Thursday, September 25, 2014

just can't seem to stay in one place!

I'm going on the road again, today -- next time you hear from me i'll be in Texas (unless I drop in briefly on a food-break on the way)!  This time i'll be the driver, so no passing thoughts will be typed out on the ipad in the actual process of travel....  ;-)

My gods, how things have changed since my childhood!  To be able to access the sources of information we can now, WHILE DRIVING DOWN THE HIGHWAY -- what a pipe-dream!  But there it is....

So i'll be less responsive over the weekend, while I dress in anachronistic attire and talk about anachronistic everyday affairs and drink anachronistic beverages....  If you're curious, you can see some of the latter here:  http://www.artofdrink.com/jerry-thomas/

;-)  ...here's the opportunity the trolls love to take advantage of -- they post their snotty little comments, and hope that they'll stay visible longer than usual when i'm traveling.  So i'll amend my earlier announcement that I won't be popping in to check up on things regularly -- I DO so enjoy deleting some people's snark!

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

why we do it, and why that bothers people

Last week I lambasted MDA a couple of times; this week i'm placing yet another seal of approval on The Scribble Pad -- that ought to get a few people into quite a lather!  However, I don't wind up the latter purposefully, as it gives ME no pleasure to throw rocks at hornets' nests....

No, I particularly applaud the post I just read, discussing fiber.  Wooo first straightens out the misunderstandings of people who do not read her work thoroughly enough to know what she actually does, and why -- she eats plenty of non-animal products, and in fact deplores the fact that too much protein of any kind damages the ketosis that makes her feel her best;  she enjoys meat and would prefer to eat more than she dares.  AND THIS IS WHAT THE IGNORANT DON'T UNDERSTAND -- there are two kinds of people who restrict their diets:  those who WANT to do so, to achieve a particular end (like weight loss), and those who really don't have a choice (they feel horrible when certain foodstuffs hit their systems).

So CS loses weight but doesn't FEEL BETTER on a VLC diet?  She finds it easy to fall off it, because there's no misery attached to eating more carbs.  What happens when Galina breaks her diet and consumes wheat?  MISERY.  It's that simple.

Despite what I learned from Wheat Belly and Grain Brain, it would really be easy for me to eat like "everyone else" -- except that I would feel like HELL.  All those statistics about backsliders from a low-carb diet?  THOSE, who "can't stick with it," are the ones who ONLY get weight-loss or lower BG or some such benefit from it.  But some of us get a lot more than that, and Wooo described a few conditions that help define who those people might be.

I wish I could definitively answer the question in the second part of today's blog-title.  Why DOES it bother people so much that some of us adhere so "easily" to a restrictive diet that causes us to not fit in with "normal people"?

I don't subscribe to the "because they're jealous" philosophy, which I've heard so many times through the decades in response to a wide variety of "why do they hate me" questions.  Too facile, and usually incorrect, so it probably is here, as well.  Others may wish they had our determination, but if they experienced our physical repercussions to an inappropriate diet, they'd probably be determined, too! 

It may have something to do with societies being more comfortable when everyone conforms.  But curiously enough, vegetarians get a lot more respect than, for example, wheat-abstainers.  THAT I don't get, unless it's a question of vegetarianism being confounded in people's imaginations with idealism in anti-cruelty and health-consciousness.  Somehow, health-consciousness (eschewing a "whole food group") is a one-way street in this case.

Perhaps certain low-carb-anti's, as Eddie calls them, are hostile because they know, on some level of consciousness, that they're wrong about carb limitation.  Some of the excuses they bring up are patently incorrect (low-carb does NOT fuck up your thyroid, nor give you a mucin deficiency, nor damage a previously-healthy microbiome).  Perhaps if the anti's can convince others to follow their philosophies, it provides them reason to believe that they might actually be right after all?  Or perhaps they have a psychological desire for dominance, but no-one in their personal lives who will fill that role for them?  GOK what the answer is ... and he ain't tellin'. 

But just like "carb-deficiency," "probiotic-deficiency" is a nonsense concept where people have a adequately-working GI tract.  Do you poop without distress?  It works.

Chasing the colonic bacteria of a hunter-gatherer population of a different genetic background and on another damned CONTINENT is analogous to chasing NUMBERS in cholesterol or ketones.  WHEN WILL PEOPLE (who should know better) STOP CHASING NUMBERS?!  These things are results of behaviors and physical situations, not causative factors. 

Does it matter if I have a different population of gut-bugs from a HGer in Africa?  Absolutely not.  They have different diets and different potential infective agents in their environments and different genetics -- probably different colon-lengths as well. 

...What, you haven't seen THIS graphic recently?
 
How about this chart?

 
Didn't think so.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

adventures in vitex

Anyone who also reads The Scribble Pad will have heard of Wooo's experiments with the herb vitex agnus....  After reading all she had to say about it, and looking up more info for myself, I decided it might be a "fit" for me, too.  A lot of the things she supplements fit her issues better than mine and I don't choose to try them, but I discovered long ago that one of my lifelong problems has been a shortage of dopamine.  Conclusion -- worth experimenting!

So I got myself a bottle of the encapsulated herb from a good company and gave it a shot.  Vitex wasn't a bright-light-on-the-road-to-Damascus like glutathione was, but I felt a perceptible lift to the spirits and better motivation.  Success.  Vitex is an herb worth keeping around.

I added another herb a couple of weeks later, which is also a keeper -- guggul, of which I wrote awhile ago.  When I started to experience a little heart-palpitation occasionally, first I asked Wooo if it could be vitex (and consulted WebMD), then I started eliminating things -- I was concerned it might be the guggul, and I didn't want that to be true!  But I stopped the guggul and it didn't help.  I stopped SAMe and it didn't help.  I stopped phosphatidylserine (which I planned to discontinue anyway, when the bottle was empty) and it didn't help.  I stopped the vitex and it helped.

Damn.  So a few days after the vitex-cessation and I had a few extra stressors come along ... damn again.  I haven't felt depression like that for quite a long time!  I took a vitex anyway (what's a little palpitation, compared to feeling like life isn't worth living?), and within hours I started feeling better.  And no palpitations.

I suspect that my dosage might simply have been too high.  I plan to use vitex every other day instead of daily, and see what happens.  Assuming all goes well, i'll try the herb in a less-potent form next time I need to re-stock.

The crux of the matter is, vitex agnus DOES seem to boost dopamine, and it does it more effectively than any of the other herbs I've tried.  NOTHING else has done for me, mood-wise, what this herb does.

When you're dopamine-deficient, you tend to feel that it's just not worthwhile to do a lot of things -- the reward you receive doesn't make up for the effort expended.  Things that you SHOULD enjoy don't make you feel any better, a tiny bit of discouragement puts your mood in the gutter, and thinking about taking a risk shows you downsides and no up.  Dopamine from carby foods make it impossible to stop?  HAH.  In my case, "I get no kick from ..." ice cream.  Or cake.  Or potato chips.  Food-addiction isn't the reason I was chubby as a child, or in my thirties, etc.  If you don't get a thrill out of ANYTHING, food ain't gonna help.  The distraction of a good book and the numbing effects of alcohol are the best some people can achieve.

So although vitex is not a romance made in heaven (like methylcobalamin and glutathione have been for me), it's definitely a good thing -- kinda like Bogart and Rains at the end of Casablanca -- an excellent partnership.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

just eat FOOD

http://drbganimalpharm.blogspot.com/2014/09/dont-take-resistant-starch-alone-and.html ... TLDR

Ah, Magic Health Superfoods (TM)!  They come and they go, and the poor suckers who think there's a shortcut to weight loss and optimal well-being are out a lot of money and, sometimes, physical discomfort, as well.

I'm not saying that paleo food is all you need, as some of the innocent young primalists do -- it's well-documented that some people do not absorb nutrients well enough to get what they need, and MORE who don't convert them, in their bodies, in textbook fashion!  It may be imperative to take specially-formulated vitamin, mineral, enzyme or other supplements, and take them in combination (or not) at the right times, to get the right molecules to go to the right places.

But instead of taking your potato starch (at least a couple of tablespoons per day!) plus whatever else kind of cooked starch and this fiber, and that fiber ... is there any reason that eating, say ...VEGETABLES might not provide the benefits of all of them, in one convenient package?

It has become glaringly apparent to me that different people tolerate different oligo- and polysaccharides in widely different forms and quantities.  Here's a novel idea:  each of us chooses the vegetables and/or fruits which we know we can tolerate, and EAT THOSE!  Not too much ... plants if you like 'em.  Unless i've been grossly misled, they all contain fiber and starch in varying amounts.

[evil grin]

Monday, September 15, 2014

dearie dear...

...I'm picking on two MDA posts in one week!  (and i made the mistake of reading comments again -- i know better than that)

It just goes to show how bloody CLUELESS male jocks can be, about women's fitness issues.  Sorry, guys -- i know some wonderful men read here, and i hate tarring all of your gender with the same brush ... but some of the bros (who i'm sure do NOT visit my blog) just need to learn to say "i don't know; ask a female trainer."  AND A LOT OF WOMEN NEED TO STOP SUCKING UP TO MALE FITNESS AUTHORITIES.

[sigh...  It's amazing to me that there is STILL so much male-authority-worship by women, out there.  Is it because Bro is so confident that he has the answers, and it gives them faith that he can help them?  Or is it just the attraction that "successful" men wield over women with beta-husbands/boyfriends ... if they have any men in their lives at all?]

I don't even know where to START in my critique of today's Dear Mark article!  ...Rather, yes i do know the first point i'll pick apart!!!  It's the profound ignorance of thyroid issues in otherwise sensible individuals.

Does a woman have trouble losing weight and/or fat?  Get her thyroid checked!  Ignore the fact that her energy is fine, that she's not exhibiting the pre-testing-days symptoms like puffy face and eyes, swollen mucus membranes and tongue, inappropriate chilliness, bad digestion and so on.  No, make her take a half-day off work to go to the doctor and talk him into ordering what might be a totally useless blood test (because a lot of them think the TSH is all you need)!  And when the test comes back "normal" then go through the angst of "is it REALLY normal or is it old-paradigm normal"....  I've come to the conclusion that the worst thing that ever happened to thyroid-troubled individuals is laboratory testing!  It CREATED the problem of treating the numbers, not the patient.

There are a lot of reasons a woman might have a hard time losing weight, and unless she had trouble with it before, assuming a brand-new thyroid disfunction should be much further down the list than other hormonal possibilities.  What about cortisol?  All the exercising that the bro-sites recommend is quite simply evolutionarily ridiculous for a woman.  A person who LIKES exercise will do a lot of it with no encouragement.  Those of us who DISlike running around and getting all sweaty are not going to achieve good results from it.  Maybe you've heard of people who claim to be allergic to their own perspiration -- thus expressed it sounds absurd, but if you know anything about histamine reactions you'll recognize the symptoms.  Malaise after exercise is a real thing, and it doesn't get better by sucking it up and yanking on your boot-straps -- it gets worse, and raises stress-hormones as well.  And raised stress-hormones will defeat the best efforts to lose weight.

"Maybe she's not eating enough!"  We hear this a lot.  Is there an actual RCT that shows this is possible, or is it just more made-up-because-it's-plausible-science?  Honest -- if anyone knows of any solid DATA that this is sound, i'd love to know about it!  So far, all i've heard are hypotheses and anecdotes.

When we start eating more nutrient-dense foods, we DO tend to eat less overall.  But if the postulators are right, and we need to eat more, it puts us in the uncomfortable position of trying to eat more than we really want, which is reportedly as miserable as trying to eat less than our bodies demand. Before i make myself gorge on superfluous foodstuffs, i want to be damned sure it's going to do some good.

"Maybe she really needs to be carrying more weight!  Women are healthier at higher BF%s than men!   And besides, curves are GOOD!"  ...IS THIS THE BEST YOU CAN DO?  Yeah, SHE wants to lose more weight, but who gives a shit what SHE wants!  She's just vain, wanting to look better in her clothes (or naked); and she's STOOPID cuz she's been looking at models in magazine and thinks they look good.  ...That's disgusting.  BAD advice.

Mark did NOT call her on the carpet for heavily indulging in "paleo baked goods," though it looked as though her husband (and commenters) were quick to point those out.  If she WANTS to lose weight those need to be the first to go -- even if she is eating more nutritiously than she ever has before.

It was the second letter's response that put me over the edge, though -- five paragraphs of smart-ass idiocy.  He thought he was being funny.  The commenters (mostly male) thought he was very humorous.  But the letter-writer wrote, "I am depressed by....  Is there anything i can do about it?"  When a person feels bad enough to write that they are depressed, THE LAST FUCKING THING you should do is make a joke about it.  The next last-fucking-thing-you-should-do is probably what he did -- say that it's probably hereditary but btw go get your thyroid checked, and make sure you get plenty of consistent exercise with sprints and heavy-lifting and burpees ... and also keep your stress down (see above)!  And yadayada sleep and yadayada all the rest of the things i usually say....

"Maybe this" and "maybe that" is what women have been told for a goddam CENTURY, the last half of which i've personally heard it and tried it, and it's mostly bullshit.  It's male-oriented science that is scaled down and back for us weaker vessels and physiology is physiology and the-first-law-of-thermodynamics and....

Listen:  the male body and the female body are DIFFERENT.  Hormones are important to how our bodies burn glucose and fat, and make muscle, and produce neurotransmitters and NO END of small but important metabolic processes.  The differences are even huge between young female bodies and older ones.

Mark, if you don't KNOW how to solve the ladies' problems, falling back on generic conventional advice is not the best way to deal with the situation.  Unless she's young and sheltered, you can bet your ass she's heard it all before, anyway.  If you don't KNOW something that's been shown to be helpful, she's wasting precious time and energy chasing rainbows instead of looking for someone who CAN tell her something useful.  No, if she's depressed ENOUGH, your pathetic jokes and platitudes may be the last straw, driving her to the sofa with a carton of ice cream.

And trust me, it doesn't HURT to say "I don't know" ... unless you're a beta-male.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

waking up hungry

There seems to be magic in red meat, for me.  Our dinner last night was tilapia baked with a nice fatty topping (butter, mayo, parmesan cheese and onions) plus a vegetable with MORE butter, and coffee and fat-bombs for dessert ... and i still woke up hungry!

Is it the finally-autumn-like weather?  Is it the shortening day-length, exacerbated recently by rainy weather that made sunlight impossible to find?  Is it the snack (macadamia nuts and white wine) i had after our renovation activities yesterday afternoon (our brunch was too early to last till dinnertime with the additional busyness)?

Whatever the case may be, i'm decidedly hungrier than usual this morning, and if i'm not eating "real meat" (aka beef or lamb) it's just not sticking to my ribs as well.  We're currently sitting in our favorite diner for HEARTY omelettes (i.e., in St. Louis -- we have other faves in other cities), waiting for the "western with added mushrooms" to arrive.  Billie's omelettes come with biscuits or toast, which i of course never eat, and though many customers add on hash-browns, i resist that temptation consistently.  Last time we were here i had ham-steak and eggs, and the former was so huge i took half of it home!  But their three-egg creations here are what you come for, if you want a well-stuffed one.

Ah!  Here it is!  :-)


******

I actually wrote this yesterday morning at about this same time, but my ipad resisted putting an appropriate-sized photo in, so I delayed till getting home to my laptop ... then got distracted!  The good news is, the rehabbed bathroom will be finished today, and I was kinda busy in the kitchen, too.  I made a different kind of fat-bomb (we like them with coffee after dinner), and I also made a batch of pumpkin "cheesecake" (it'll be dessert tonight).  And I made another recipe for the first time, out of the Sultan's Kitchen cookbook -- we've really been enjoying their dishes for lamb!  This time it was "cauliflower moussaka" which contains ground lamb and a whole bunch of different vegetables -- I halved the amount of cauliflower in it.

And I DIDN'T wake up hungry THIS morning!  ;-)

Thursday, September 11, 2014

making it harder than it has to be

A "dependable" blogger whose work i read regularly, but who is not on my blog list, published something yesterday that i simply cannot let past me without a comment.  Concerning protein:  we need it (no contest);  we need more of it as we age (no disagreement, there);  "we need to consume the right amount at the right times" -- WHOA.

The article i just read doesn't really define what that amount is, or if there are times when it is better to protein-load and times when it isn't;  he just listed a few occasions when a person needs more than the usual ... whatever that may individually be.  But the phrase i quoted in the previous paragraph sent up warning flares for me -- what IS the right amount?  what IS the "right time"?

We're all grown-ups, here.  We ought to be able to sense when we've had "enough" protein (and fat) because our appetite is satisfied.  To imply that if we don't get the "right amount at the right times" we really need to work on it, screams micromanagement to me or even (dare i say it!) orthorexia.  Really!!!  "The right amount at the right times"???

Make sure you get enough complete protein (eat animal-protein with every meal).

Make sure you get even more when your body is stressed, because protein is the material used in repair and growth of tissues.

IT DOESN'T HAVE TO BE DIFFICULT.  Why make it so?  Why alert us that we need the RIGHT amount at the RIGHT TIME?

No, this blog-post is alarmist, and encourages us to worry unnecessarily about what we're eating and when.  I call BS.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

guggul works

I ran out of a tried-and-true thyroid-enhancing supplement, and Amazon doesn't seem to sell it anymore.  EXPERIMENT TIME!  :-D

Having read about guggul (Commiphora mukul) some time ago, and having my memory jogged by a recent mention in an online article, i decided to renew my acquaintance with the subject.  I went to Amazon (again), identified a product i'd be inclined to try, and started reading reviews.  Naturally, one tends to see extremes reported -- not people saying "this supplement is okay" as often as "OMG I'LL NEVER USE THIS AGAIN!" or "OMG I CAN'T LIVE WITHOUT THIS!"  :-)  Okay, interesting results.  Then i went to webmd.com, to see what the "official" line on this herb is, and i was sold.

I wasn't convinced by the official, evidence-based, scientifically-savvy discussion on what guggul has been "proven" to do.  Webmd is full of NOTHING but "possibly effective for" and "probably INeffective for" statements.  No, if you want to know what an herb or stand-alone micronutrient REALLY DOES, you go to their "interactions" tabs, and see what you mustn't mix them with!  You learn all about their true actions there.

Sometimes it's a question of exacerbating the actions of the "proven" drug, and sometimes it's acting against them, but that way you see what the medical community SEES that the supplement does, but is damned if they'll admit it.  Guggul increases both estrogen AND thyroid.  I'm surprised that Big Pharma hasn't pulled strings to have it banned -- it has potential to cut way into their market share!

So i got the tincture (i strongly prefer this form for herbal supplements), and i've been using it for about a week.  Not once have i awakened with cold feet and foggy brain, despite one busy-day ... "bad feast."  ;-)   My energy has been very good, and mood also.  My digestion and sleep have been above-average, too.  No wired-but-tired side-effects, which would indicate it puts me into the hypER range.  

Guggul is definitely a keeper!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

"why YOU should..."

Life has been busy here....  We're doing outdoor renovations and indoor ones as well.  And while it's all happening, life goes on -- even when we have water turned off and sewer-lines replaced, while we're running up and down stairs doing cutting on bead-board (table-saw is in the basement) and fetching the right tools for installation of wallpaper, plumbing and carpentry, we still have to wash and launder and cook and eat ... or sometimes go out for breakfast or lunch.  Steaks on the grill and frozen vegetables, thank heavens, don't require much work.  J likes bagged salad, too.  My lunch yesterday was a can of tuna and a tablespoon of capers, all mixed up with my own mayonnaise.  Dinner was Atkins-recipe beef stroganoff on shirataki noodles and a green vegetable.

Drinking my breakfast (black coffee and Nutreince vitamins) and reading "the latest" online this morning, I came across a "gem" of a blog-post on someone else's list -- X reasons why "you" should eat more ___(insert the name of goitrogenic vegetable here).

This kind of thing REALLY pisses me off.  Not only is it full of misinformation about said vegetable's nutritional value*, its message is not why the writer found benefit from eating it herself, but why YOU should do it.

Sorry, lady, your advice is full of shit. 

A mind-blowing proportion of the western-world population is hypothyroid.  The REASON they are is probably because the western world is SWIMMING in goitrogenic substances.  From the chlorine and fluoride in the water, bromine in the pool, hot-tub, bread, and citrus-flavored beverages, thyroid-toxins in the air and food, inadequate thyroid nutrients in diets, and BAD ADVICE, it's really no wonder.

Right, left and center, we're told that "well, yeah -- THAT food IS a goitrogen but there's so little in it that if you cook it, you don't need to worry."  YOU KNOW HOW MANY FOODS THAT INCLUDES?  That "technical term" known as a SHITLOAD.  There may only be a tiny bit of harm from a single source, but when you multiply it by the potentially-large number of goitrogenic substances you consume in a day, it's quite a burden.

ALL brassicas, aka cruciferous vegetables.  Millet and teff.  SWEET POTATOES (what, you thought that paleo-darling had no dark side?).  Cassava, aka yucca.  Peaches, nectarines, apricots, apples, pears, cherries ... all the stone fruits that have CYANIDE in their seeds.  THIOCYANATES -- yeah, the "antioxidants" you love so much.  Anthocyanins, too.

While i'm on a roll, i'll just make note of another piece of nutritional misinformation that makes me furious -- people who need to be careful of sulfur in their diets being told to avoid MEAT but to INCLUDE the problematic sulfur-containing vegetables!  Thiocyanates do more harm than good -- sulfur-containing proteins are literally ESSENTIAL in the diet.

If YOU have included more kale in your diet and you find it has done you nothing but good, that's great!  I'm happy for you.  Celebrate your joy of discovery.

Just don't tell ME that I should be adding these toxins to MY diet.  Don't tell one of the huge number of hypothyroid people in the world today, who hasn't done the reading I have, that that garbage is good for them, because with the prevailing canonization of healthyfruitsandvegetables, they're liable to believe it ... to the increase of their own misery.

_____
*  NO GODDAM VEGETABLE CONTAINS VITAMIN A, OKAY???  HOW MANY FUCKING TIMES DO I HAVE TO SAY IT???  ...and anyone who isn't familiar with the term "antinutrient" doesn't know anything about the vitamins and minerals in plant-foods.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

in-process shot, just for Gwen ;-)


The wallpaper doesn't really "sing" in this photo, but it's a slightly shiny turquoise and silvery mauve that goes well with the warm browns of the woodwork. The house being so out-of-plumb, we have a lot of filling in to do on the north end of the room.  Oh well....  ;-)  When the trim is applied on the top edge of the wainscot we'll re-install the window's woodwork.  J has the new valves applied to the water lines, and they don't leak!  HURRAH!  The sink will go back in soon. 

I salvaged the "early" toilet-paper holder from the basement bathroom, and am contemplating whether I can install it in this tiny room and not wound an arm every time I sit down (it sticks out about six inches, and has a "blade" to cut the paper, which was probably not perforated in those days).  BUT IT'S SO KEWL!  :-)  I just love anachronistic appliances....

St. Louis is filled with houses of every vintage, but most of the older ones we've had a chance to see have been "updated to death."  One of the things that we like about OURS is that it's been comparatively neglected in that respect -- there are a great many original features still intact, and as we enjoy historic architecture and d├ęcor, it's been a pleasure to us to bring our house back to the style it originally flaunted.  I've been rehabbing rooms in order of ugliness -- you should have seen some of the wallpapers and carpets we've replaced!

minutia happens

When you're retired, long holiday weekends don't mean much anymore.  Mostly, they serve to remind us that visiting parks or tourist-attractions is a poor idea, till everyone goes back to work/school.  So these days, we tend to stay "in" on weekends and common times of schoollessness.  Over THIS weekend, I finally put the wallpaper up in the main-floor powder-room.

(The first time I referred to that room by that name, my husband was confused -- what's a POWDER room?  ;-)  "Half-bath" then....  I'm amused by anachronistic and euphemistic words of various times and places -- they say so much about a culture.)

The amount of paper I applied, less than two "double rolls" in a high-ceilinged room about one meter by two, with space taken up by a toilet (the sink and wall light fixture were removed), and in which my ladder's legs could only be spread completely when extending out the doorway ... took me two afternoons!  Mercifully, I didn't do the entire height -- there's to be wainscoting.  That tiny job was harder work than papering my husband's office, which is good-sized.  My leg-muscles are still recovering.

I raise my coffee-cup to whoever invented pre-pasted wallpaper.  My gods, how CLEAN it is to hang that stuff!  THIS paper was the first I have ever had to paste myself -- I had goo on my clothes, on my arms, IN MY HAIR, probably on the dog, too.  I had to use the dining-room table (covered with a drop-cloth) for the pasting surface because it was the largest and steadiest surface in the house ... besides the floor, of course ... and anyone who has lived in an old house with the original wood floors knows, that surface can be less-than-solid, too!  ;-)  I'm just happy I didn't get paste on the rug -- at least not in its damp state -- I daresay there are plenty of dry flakes shed from the dropcloth.

Have you ever looked at the ingredient list of wallpaper paste?  It reads like the ingredients of commercial food thickeners!  Cornstarch, cellulose, sodium nitrate (to help resist mold I assume).... I suppose if one were starving it could be eaten -- but what am I saying?  A lot of the ingredients in this stuff ARE eaten, daily, by people who think their diets are "healthy"!

But I lived through it, and the results were GOOD, despite the fact that room is not "square."  It is, in fact, one of the curiosities in this house -- I believe it was originally a china-closet, or maybe the place where the original owners locked up the silver.  We have a "door to nowhere" in the dining room which obviously led into this little space, and it's lined with sheetrock rather than the lath-and-plaster found everywhere else; its window is also obviously not original.  In the twentieth century, where more than one bathroom was expected to be in every house of a decent size, someone apparently chose to sacrifice the built-in closet for the sake of a WC on the ground floor (good choice...).

Today, we continue the good work, and fit in the bead-board wainscot that we painstakingly hand-grained to coordinate with the rest of the woodwork, and then we can reinstall the sink and light.  YEA!!!  It's nice to not have to use the kitchen sink to wash our hands after ... you know....