Gratuitous worthless-cold-remedy plug

As well as work commitments – shockingly – biting into my day, I have recently been stricken by some sort of mutant flu/Black Death ailment. Medical science being too incompetent to find a cure for these things, victims can only wait it out.

I have expelled gallons of thick nasal mucus into hundreds of tissues – and I mean serious kitchen rolls, not namby-pamby Kleenex (specifically, I recommend ultra-absorbent Regina brand). More for amusement than anything else, I have also tried cough syrup. The choice is between Madame Pearl, who looks creepy, and African Sea-Coconut. Obviously, I go for the latter, with its splendid 1950s-style packaging in Chinese, Arabic-script Malay and Tamil…

The leaflet and list of ingredients are perfect to browse through during bouts of fevered delirium (ideally accompanied by Japanese cosmic freak-out music)…

I have actually seen a sea-coconut up close, at a museum in Macau. It is the Biggest Seed in the World – bigger than a basketball and weighing in at 30 pounds with no problem. After dropping from the tree, the monster floats across the ocean in the hope of being washed up on a distant beach where it can propagate its valiant species. (The museum’s story; Wikipedia says otherwise, pointing out that the tree never spread beyond two islands in the Seychelles.)

I assume it is endangered – otherwise, why use it in Chinese medicine?



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5 Responses to Gratuitous worthless-cold-remedy plug

  1. Big Al says:

    The photo on the SCMP website of “former chief executive Donald Tsang on his way to court in a prison van” reveals something strange – his ears. Or at least his right ear, which appears to be elongated and alien-like. Explains a lot …

  2. Property Developer says:

    Apologies for any pedantry, but the coco-de-mer has spread in the past as far as India and the Maldives.

    Have you ever tried Nin Jiom Pei Pai Koa ( in hot water? Not sure if does any good, but it certainly warms the cockles.

    Get well soon! Life without a daily fix of your sanity and humour wouldn’t be the same.

  3. Red Dragon says:

    Hope you’re feeling better soon, Hemmers.

    As you mention Regina, l thought this might cheer you up.

  4. Make sure you spread it about. It’s not SARS after all.

  5. reductio says:

    Wow! Like the music. Reminds me of Gong. Now where’s my magic teapot?

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