Sunday, July 24, 2016

On Alcoholism

Alcohol has had a bad reputation since its creation by the ancient Sumerians 6,000 years ago. By the way, the ancient Sumerian name for alcohol was “igi-hulu.” That’s right! The word alcohol has come all the way down to us from Sumeria almost in its pristine and distilled form.

Beer received special attention in the 18th century BC code of the Babylonian lawmaker Hammurabi and it was a capital offense, punishable by death, to be charged with rowdy behavior in a salon after its consumption. In fact some of the first writings in ancient Sumeria and Egypt were documents keeping account of the amount of beer barley and grain being stored in the royal house.

There are even some historians who argue that had it not been for the invention of alcohol, civilization as we know it would not have developed. For instance, some go on to point out that the American Revolution was given birth to in a local Boston tavern. One can imagine the founding fathers discussing the upcoming Boston Tea Party over a few mugs of beer.

The idea is not too farfetched, if you consider it.

Alcohol was also historically utilized for medicinal purposes, as in the Civil War when it was used to anesthetize a wounded soldier before undergoing an amputation of a limb. Notwithstanding this, it has also served a psychological medicinal purpose.

The anesthetizing effect of alcohol is due to the brain’s overloading the blood system with HDLPs or “High Density Lipoproteins” which causes a significant rise in the body’s production of endorphins. This process not only decreases pain, but brings about a temporary euphoric state of being.

This is the very trap in connection with large consumption of alcohol. One can easily fall into a vicious cycle of chasing the euphoria, by significantly increasing one’s intake. The problem with this process is that the body eventually builds a higher level of tolerance, so that it requires an even larger amount of imbibing to reach the same initial euphoric state. This is one of the reasons alcoholism is harder to cure than addiction to any other substance known to man.

Many a combat veteran throughout the annuals of modern warfare (in particular from the Civil War onto the present Gulf War) has resulted to alcoholism to assuage the persistent demons and traumatic flashbacks of the horrors experienced on the battlefield. 

And this is where we find our hero and main character, Army Ranger and Gulf War veteran, Staff Sergeant Hank Donaldson in my action-novel The Shaitan.

Not only is Staff Sergeant Hank Donaldson troubled by nagging flashbacks of horrific battle scenes, but he is also plagued with a guilty conscience over his recent divorce and subsequent estrangement from his children; this being the result of his chronic absence from home in the fulfillment of his military duties.

In response our hero takes to the bottle with vigor and finds himself in a drunken stupor most of the time. This wouldn’t pose such a threat, if it had not been for the fact that he was still in the employ of the United States Army, and sent out on a most sensitive mission to find and neutralize, Ismial Abdur Rahim, the world’s most wanted terrorist.

How can Staff Sergeant Hank Donaldson accomplish this vital task without jeopardizing the operation and bringing great harm to himself?

To find out the answer to this question, I invite you to purchase and read an electronic copy of my novel, The Shaitan!


The Shaitan is not sold on at this time.

To view a few sample pages or to purchase The Shaitan visit:  (Note: You must 1st remove “adult content” filter from top right hand corner of Smashword page to access the book, by clicking the “Adult Content” button before searching for book title The Shaitan in search field).

If you want to view my Smashwords Author Profile visit:

You can also check the comments I will be posting about the making of the book as well as background material out on these social media sites:

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Bon appetite!
Daniel Canada aka Obsidian