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A Tryst with Amethyst

23 Feb 2021

An attractive amethyst geode sits on my desk. Geodes are rocks with an internal cavity that is filled with crystals of a mineral. In the case of amethyst that mineral is quartz, tainted with iron...

Can You Be Drunk Without Drinking?

17 Dec 2019

It all started with a stomach exploding in Uganda. It’s the case that’s often cited as launching the saga of a fringe diagnosis: a five-year-old boy in 1946 was being treated for a chronic...

The Truth Behind "Beer Before Liquor"

6 Jun 2019

Have you ever heard the saying "beer before liquor never been sicker"? Or “liquor before beer, you’re in the clear”? What about “grape or grain but never the twain”? Well, it turns out that there...

Testing Drivers for THC Is a Lot Harder Than Testing Them for Alcohol

18 Oct 2018

To test drivers for alcohol consumption, we have the breathalyzer. It’s fast, reliable, portable and inexpensive, but it will not work for cannabis.

From Bottle to Blood to Breath: How Breathalyzers Work

15 Mar 2018

The term “alcohol” to a chemist  means an organic compound that contains an OH group, but as far as the public is concerned “alcohol” refers to one specific compound, namely, ethanol. It is ethanol...

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