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Bank Holiday Blogposting

Bank Holiday Posting stuff

So obviously I’m writing this a little late. Mostly these days I use my Instagram page to put any important info up, so if you haven’t already, pop over there and give me a follow!

Post Office was shut on the 15th April for Good Friday, and again today (Monday 18th). What this means is all the spore orders that came in on Friday got posted Saturday, and everything from 5ish on Friday is being packed up in a bit and posted first thing Tuesday 19th. Not much of a delay, and not one I have any control over, but there we are!

Ladies getting a bit drunk
Standard bank holiday carnage. I am too old for this shit now haha

Spore Syringe availability

Whatever is on the site is what I’ve currently got, and it does change sometimes! I recently had a customer asking me when the APE Reverts were coming back, and I was happy to be able to tell him it’d be a few days. After making the syringes, they have to go through a bit of a microscopic testing process to make sure that there have been no errors on my behalf. I’ve got a lot of different varieties, so sometimes life gets in the way and I get a bit backed up on this. Recently I’ve been a bit poorly (all the fun symptoms of Covid, none of the positive tests that would get me any time off work), so some evenings I’ve just been having to lie on the couch, moan, and drink Lemsips (they’re vile but my brain thinks it’s decent medicine). If there’s ever anything that is out of stock it’s always worth dropping me a message, as I should be able to let you know a rough ETA for restock. These are only rough estimates, as sometimes things beyond my control happen, but I’m happy to let you know when I think the items you want will be back in. Spore Prints are a perfect example of this – I’ve got fucking loads of them, but not much time to cut them down into individual prints, so I sometimes wait until people ask and then cut a whole batch up at once.

Orangutan sawing a branch
Workin’ hard for a living

Cool stuff that’s coming up

Well it’s cool for me anyway! Going away for a few days at the start of May to watch Tool in Manchester, so I’ve recruited a glamorous assistant who’s gonna handle the packing up and posting for me when I’m not here (they’re a mate who’s just happy to lend a hand). I’m still a very small business, so most of the time it’ll still only be me, but I’ve now got the option of a bit of help if the shit hits the fan. This means that from this point on, there won’t need to be any times when I can’t post due to having a little holiday or anything, and also means if for whatever reason I get sick the business can still roll on regardless! Got some bigger plans for the next few years too which are quite exciting but I’m not gonna bang on about them yet just in case they don’t come off.

Tool tour listing
Never thought I’d have the chance to see these dudes, can’t wait!

Bloody Peacemaker innit bruv

Have you seen Peacemaker yet? It’s all about what John Cena’s character does after the events of Suicide Squad 2, and fuck me it’s good. Really funny, has a decent bit of heart to it, great action sequences, and John Cena is amazingly watchable. I was able to watch it via Now TV, and it gets the completely made-up Orangutan Seal of Approval. I’m not the biggest DC film fan, I mean, yeah, I watch them but I’m pretty ambivalent about them (although I thought Suicide Squad 2 was great), so I think it’s probably more that I like James Gunn’s writing and directorial influence. The man knows how to make films about weird superheroes in a funny way, that feels genuine. Anyway, watch Peacemaker, don’t vote Tory.

Peacemaker pulling a weird face
Me when I’m foraging in October
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Where are Magic Mushroom spores legal?

It’s pretty simple!

So those of you that follow my social media will have seen that I am now able to post to Ireland again! Yay! Now, spores have always been legal in Ireland (like most places in the world), but for some bizarre reason (most likely Brexit related), their local postal carrier, An Post, decided just before Christmas 2021 that Royal Mail’s electronic customs information was incorrect. I got in contact with Royal Mail who told me that no, it was all fine, and it was a problem on An Post’s side. This meant that pretty much all of my packages to Ireland got sent back (and not just mine, most eBay sellers too), which obviously cost me a whole lot of money in refunds, and I had to stop sending to Ireland. I am now giving it another shot following some discussions with customers who assure me all the eBay packages are coming through fine now, so yeah, it’s a good day!

But: legality! Currently, as far as I am aware, the only places you can’t have magic mushroom spores are three states in America (California, Georgia, and Idaho), and, bizarrely, Norway. This has always struck me as kinda weird in California’s case, because they seem to be quite relaxed and left-leaning on a lot of issues (or as much as America can be, anyway). As a fun side-effect of those three American states not liking spores, the banks class spore vending as super high risk, which is why spore vendors can’t take card payments.

The spores are completely legal everywhere else though, because in most countries it’s the Psilocybin that’s illegal, and it’s only when someone attempts cultivation and tries to germinate the spores that Psilocybin begins to be produced. Basically, this means that you can collect all the magic mushroom spores you like, and it’s not gonna cause you any problems at all!

Team America: World Police
Fuck Yeah

Customs Shenanigans

In my experience so far, (and to be fair, I send a lot of packages abroad every week) your local customs agents really don’t give a shit, in a good way. They’re on the lookout for anything illegal or incorrectly declared, that’s their job. Thankfully for you (unless you live in Norway, California, Idaho or Georgia), Psilocybe Cubensis spores are legal, so there’s nothing there that they care about. I personally import a large amount of spores from various countries, these are inspected at different stages of the customs process, and no-one cares. I suspect unless they’re into mycology themselves (and it’s still quite a niche hobby after all), they likely don’t know what the product actually is – they’re only human, and it’s not like they would have an encyclopedic knowledge of every single item everyone in their country imports.

Officer Doofy
How I picture customs officers

The Future

What do I reckon will happen in the future? I think my best guess would be this: it’s a great time to collect all these spores and keep them in your library. Can’t do anything else with them now, obviously. However, I’m confident that in the future there may well be a relaxation on the laws surrounding the cultivation of magic mushrooms. There’s a reasonable amount evidence out there supporting the therapeutic benefits of a bit of Psilocybin, and there’s a growing surge of popularity around mushrooms to the point where even fanny-candle vendor Gwyneth Paltrow is banging on about them.

Seems plausible then that it’ll probably end up like the Cannabis market, with most places relaxing prohibition, and very possibly the industry getting co-opted by rich old Tory fucks. That would still be cooler than it is now – I’ve said multiple times that I think the cultivation of magic mushrooms should be legal, especially for personal use. Sadly that isn’t the case at the moment, so that’s why we just collect them and wait for a better future!

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It’s time for a bit of Q and A!

I get a lot of questions sent to me via my Insta, which is probably the best way to get hold of me. My phone’s often in my hand (I am a filthy millenial), and although I do check emails quite frequently my inbox moves pretty quickly. This is mainly due to the amount of “your order is being processed/sent” – basically, the people using Insta to get in touch are doing the right thing if they want a speedier answer. With that said, there are loads of questions I just can’t (and won’t) answer, so I’ll try and explain why here, as well!

“Can I talk to you about growing magic mushrooms?”

Fuck no! Nope. Big ol’ nope! Magic mushroom spores (like the ones I sell) currently occupy a nice little grey area, much like cannabis seeds, where they’re totally legal to own and legal to do whatever you like with as long as you don’t grow the fuckers. And when I say grow, I mean any kind of cultivation attempt, so this includes Agar work too. Do not ask me about any of this kind of stuff or send me any pictures of anything like this.

Do I think this is a morally correct law? No. It’s a dumb law, made by some old-fashioned dudes, and it flies in the face of all available research. However, being morally correct doesn’t mean you can just do whatever you like. I can do some good in the world by providing spore syringes for people to have a look at under the microscope, and that’s what I want to do, so I’ve gotta play by the rules no matter how dumb I think those rules are.

There’s a definite distinction here – yes, personally I think growing magic mushrooms is cool and good, but I won’t sell anyone spores to break the law with or I’d be part of your evil nature crimes. I do genuinely have to block people when they talk about illegal shit, because I’m running a legal business, and I don’t want to jeopardise that in any way.

It's the Hamburglar doing crimes
Goddamn criminals

“Can I buy your spore syringes to sell in my shop?”

Yes, you can. I am more than happy to talk about wholesale pricing depending on how you want to do it. The amount of discount depends on a few things! Obviously you’d have to buy quite a few at once (100+), and I can either supply them like I do for my customers, all stickered up and in the bag with a needle and an alcohol wipe, or I can supply them completely unlabeled just as the syringe, and you can add your own branding to it all. For bigger orders, I’ll need a bit of lead time which will usually be around a month (I’m pretty busy just keeping my own stuff in stock).

Like I’ve said in a previous blog post, I think there’s loads of room left in the UK market for people to make a few quid, so if you wanna have a crack at it yourself, you should!

“Can I pay you with PayPal/Western Union Transfer?”

Nope! If you check out the Payment Methods page, you’ll see the available ways to pay! PayPal are a bunch of fucks for about a million reasons, so fuck that, and I don’t live in a city, so it’s just not manageable to regularly be heading out to receive money via Western Union. You really should try Wise, as it’s a fast and cheap way to send money, or if you’re in the UK/USA then Cash App is pretty cool. I’ve got a referral code for Cash App over on the Payment Methods page, so we’ll both get a free fiver if you sign up. It’s like having a free beer!

“Surely you grow magic mushrooms yourself to get the spores?”

No, of course not, like I’ve said that would be illegal. A little-known phenomenon is that due to the vastly reduced growth rates of one of Britain’s endangered species, Woods Porn (killed off by the Internet, sadly), something else has filled that evolutionary niche, and that’s spore prints! If you go down to your local nature zone, have a good look in the holes in the trees and under the bushes. Instead of finding curiously stiff pages of Razzle featuring ladies with all their bits on display (like you would’ve done in the eighties), you’ll find top quality dense spore prints. Nature works in such wonderful ways.

Basically the trees eat benches and then lay spore prints. It’s the circle of life.

“How long will my order take to arrive?”

This varies, loads. Sadly Royal Mail will not change their descriptions on their website of the delivery aims – they’re still claiming First Class is 24 hours, and yeah, sometimes it is, but just as often as not it’ll take a couple a days.

This is more of an issue with International orders – again, Royal Mail claim delivery in around five days, but it can take a lot longer due to items having to go through customs. Basically Covid has made things a lot slower, as there are a lot of stages where staff sickness can have a significant knock-on effect. Your item has to go to my local post office, to a sorting office, to the airport, to UK customs, then it gets a ride on the airplane, then customs on your end, then to a sorting office, then to your local sorting office, then to your post worker – and at any stage of this, a few people being ill or having to socially distance can create a backlog. In terms of the product, it’s still fine, as it can be stored at ambient temperatures for six months or so quite happily.

As always, I’d recommend tracked shipping on anything international – it costs a little more, but it’s insured in the case of loss, and you’ll be able to see what stage of the shipping process your package is at!

“When is the podcast coming?”

Just as soon as we work out if we can say anything interesting enough to take up your time! We’ve got all the gear now, so hopefully this weekend we’re gonna have a little test run and see if it’s worth half a damn. If we’re not both cringing massively at the sounds of our own voices, then we’ll upload it somewhere!

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What about that good ol’ Elden Ring, huh?

So yeah, I like to play some video games when the chance arises. Time was, I could happily manage a huge session lost to the latest release, but since starting my own business and becoming a dad, the “me time” ratio has dropped off quite sharply. Most of the time once I’m done with the spores and I’ve had some dinner, I’m fucking done for the day.

But! I’ve always been a sucker for anything with that unmistakable Dark Souls flavour (I missed out on Demon’s Souls due to not owning a PS3 at the time and I didn’t fancy trying to get a PS5 just to play the remake), so Elden Ring was something I was looking forward to. Previously to this, my favourite Souls game was Bloodborne, because it was this weird Lovecraftian nightmare that got progressively more weird as you went through it. Very existential. It affected me that much that I actually had genuine nightmares about it, which is my mark of something great – “fucked me up? Yeah man I’ll have some of that”. Apparently George RR Martin who pretends he’s still writing Game of Thrones did some of the writing on this, but I’ll be honest, you wouldn’t be able to tell. It’s just normal Souls stuff. Bad things have happened, they’re still happening, you are a different kind of human to all the others around, and you have to go and kill things, a lot, until everything still goes to shit. That’s not a spoiler incidentally, that’s what all of the games are about.

Starscourge Radahn, massive bastard
This guy is giving me a massive headache right now

Elden Ring is fucking amazing. It’s got all the other From Software stuff that I like (if anyone else is a fan, there’s even an enemy that’s just like Sif), with an open-world setting, and get this: the open-world stuff somehow isn’t shit. Mind blown. I’m sick to the tits of Far Cry and Assassin’s Creed and all the other tedious busywork simulators, because my life already involves me trying to source millions of tiny little collectibles for my spore prints, so there’s no way I want to be doing that in my precious off-time.

I guess what I like about this sort of game (much like a decent psychedelic trip, if I’m honest), is that for the most part of it, I simply do not have a fucking clue what’s going on. I’m just trying to get by. And then at some point all becomes clearer, I start to understand some of the mechanics, my character is a bit more powerful, and I can start enjoying it rather than being all tense. I’d never thought about it in any meaningful sense before this, but I guess these things live in a similar position in my brain. I like being confused, and then I like figuring things out. Makes me feel smart, I guess. Early game, I opened a random treasure chest, which then teleported me to a horrible cave full of weird bastard crustacean dudes that fucked me up, and when I escaped that, I was in some super dangerous mushroom landscape, which made me laugh because now I’m in this industry, I just seem to find mushroom related stuff everywhere. You can even get mushroom armour! The mycelium is calling…

Mushroom armour in Elden Ring
Sick grow, bro

I think on the whole, I preferred Bloodborne’s aesthetic, because rolling through a horrible Victorian-style hellworld with a massive cleaver and a shotgun was a fuckin’ laugh, but on the whole Elden Ring is a better game. I’m some kind of magic using dude with a set of Freddy Krueger claws and it’s cool. Also there’s a horse and you feed the horse raisins. What’s not to like about that?

The Souls games get a lot of shit for being too hard (they’re not that hard, honestly) but Elden Ring isn’t anywhere near as hard as any of the other games of it’s ilk (I’m lookin’ at you, Sekiro), because if you find a particular bit too tough and you’ve started trying to bite through your controller, you can just go somewhere else until you’re either more skilled (not me) or have levelled up far more than you need to (probably me). Or you can just cheese the fuck out of things (100% me, if I can snipe them with arrows from a room that’s too small for them to get into then I am fucking gonna). There’s no judgement here buddy, you play the Souls games how you need to. What I’m saying is that You Should Buy Elden Ring. Buy it. Also don’t vote Tory.

Cheers for now, have a good one! OTC

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Trying to stay calm in a world that’s quite frankly fucking mental

Crikey. Things have gone a bit weird lately, eh? I’ve not had the best of mental health throughout the whole Covid thing. I am a bit of a worrier sometimes, and also I could probably take slightly better care of myself, so Covid had me shitting it a bit. Whatever your take on it is, great, more power to ya, but I banged those vaccines in my arm the second I could. Fill me full of it. If someone had come up to me in a nightclub back in the day with some free stuff in a syringe I’d have had one in each arm so it seemed like a no-brainer to me. I know some of the psychedelic crowd aren’t into this and hey! Whatever. You do you. We can all get along.

And then just as it seems like that might be getting a bit more manageable, Putin decides to add to my brainworm collection, start killing loads of innocent civilians, and moves us a little bit closer to the kind of war that the Fallout games begin with. Now, I quite like the Fallout games, but that’s because it’s got a nice mix of 1950’s Americana in there; that might sound fun, but picture where we’d be: a mash-up of all the worse bits of that crossed with Tory Britain. Gigantic radioactive dickheads sanctioning everyone. I’m alright, thanks.

Steve Brule calling someone a dingus
Goddamn dingus

I am now Not Young, I was born in the early 80’s, and I used to read shitloads when I was a kid. So obviously I had the vague vibe of “oh man maybe one day some dickhead is gonna push a button and I am going to melt” as a constant bit of background information in my little brain. I too have seen When the Wind Blows as a child (it was a bit unsettling). In the past 20 years, I haven’t really thought about it, but here we are again, except this time I’ve got a couple of youngsters to look after now, and I’d quite like it if they got to be old people one day.

I’d genuinely thought that the world had moved past the idea of Nuclear bombs being an option, and it’s kinda shit that all of that stuff seems to be back on the table. Like my dad used to say to me when I was young, “Putin you fucking stupid bastard, leave your sister alone and stop being a twat” (strange coincidence that he used to call me Putin I suppose).

I’m not a dude that gets particularly anxious on the regular, but yeah, it’s been a long couple of years, if I’m honest, and I’m certainly drinking and smoking too much as a bit of a crappy coping strategy. I’m checking the fuckin’ news way too many times a day too, and I’m not finding it very helpful, I’m just fucking compelled to. Doomscroll till the break of dawn, baby.

Man toots like it’s going out of fashion

But! Here’s what I’m doing, anyway. I’m trying to remind myself that this is yet another situation that I have no control over, and very little real information on. There’s so much about this situation that I will never know, so I’m trying to worry less about it. I’ve also got zero input on whether things escalate or not (obviously me and the current Government aren’t really on speaking terms anymore, haha), so there’s little point me worrying about it. Everything could get better, who knows. I hope so anyway.

Bit of heavy one really, eh? I hope you and yours are safe, warm, and fed, and continue to be.

Anyway, next time it’s back to irreverent bullshit hopefully. Been playing a lot of Elden Ring, that’s got mushrooms and magic in, so it’s probably on-topic enough! Seriously Elden Ring is really good.

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Make your own spore syringes from spore prints!

Spore prints are a great way of keeping genetics safe and sound (swabs are great too but spore prints are easy to store), and every spore vendor uses these to make heaps of syringes. As usual there are fifteen thousand ways of doing things, but this is how I like to do it. The important thing to note here is that I have to make sure everything is super cleanly done, as I’m producing hundreds of syringes at a time and I can’t risk anything at that level (imagine the fun of refunding all of that), so the way I do things involves spending lots of money on a big-ass flow hood, pressure cookers, scientific equipment etc.

You, on the other hand, might just be turning a spore print or two into a buttload of your own spore syringes. It’s a super economical way of doing things, and obviously if you’re just doing your own, you can go a bit lighter on the aseptic procedures if you like. It’s probably fine, most of the time, and if I was just knocking out a few for myself at home I would very likely cut a few corners – mycology should be accessible to all, and much like the amazing Uncle Ben tek, there are various slightly hacky methods of making spore syringes that will be likely good enough to get you up and running with a minimum of expense.

I sell some of my spore prints – they’re the same ones I use to make my syringes with! They are insanely good value if you are prepared to put a bit of work in yourself, and they travel very easily to countries with uptight customs agents.

Anyway, here’s what I do:

Get some distilled water from wherever your favourite shop is. I need this because it’s got nothing else in it (they basically evaporate the water to collect it), which means there’s less chance of the spores trying to germinate and zero chance of any shit being in the water. You could take a chance and use tap water if you’re doing it at home!

Fancypants water
Fancy water for fancy lads

Place your science beaker (yeah I know it’s got a proper name but ain’t nobody got time for that) in your pressure cooker (on a trivet so it’s not touching the bottom), throw your magnetic stirrer into the beaker, and top up with lovely distilled water. The science beaker is made of Borosilicate glass, which means heat won’t fuck it up. Water in the beaker, water also in the pressure cooker. Some of this water will evaporate so add a bit more than you think you need.

Heat up your pressure cooker, and once your weight is rocking about like a motherfucker set your timer for 25 minutes. Due to the wonders of science, the water’s boiling point is now 120 Celsius, so this 25 minute blast will kill anything that might be lurking on your equipment or in your water. Once you’ve cooked stuff for the 25 minutes, turn off the heat and allow your water to cool down. This takes ages but that’s life. I tend to do mine in the evening and leave them for the next morning, as this means I can spend valuable time sleeping, which is ace. I fucking love sleeping.

Turn your flowhood on, wait 20 minutes. Put all your stuff that you are going to use in front of your flowhood – alcohol spray, alcohol wipes, spore prints, sterile scalpel (I use disposable ones, but you could easily just get an all metal one and pop it into the PC when you’re cooking your water), magnetic stirrer plate, sterile syringes, sterile luer locks (they’re the little end caps for the syringes). Clean your hands and arms thoroughly with the alcohol wipes or spray, and then I usually put gloves on and clean them too. Wipe your surfaces! Wipe everything! Overkill is your friend here.

It's the band Overkill
“Hello, we’re your new dads”

Now open your PC in front of your lovely flowhood, and, making sure you keep everything within the airflow, place your beaker full of water on top of your magnetic stirrer. Now comes the fun bit!

Use your sterile scalpel to scrape your spore prints into your water. It’s up to you how many you use, but you’ll get multiple syringes per print, easily. Turn your magnetic stirrer on, and watch the radical little spore cyclone turn your water a shade of purple. Once you’re happy that you’ve got nice bit of spore broth going on, turn the speed on your stirrer down a bit. Don’t turn it off – if it’s just gently circulating you’ll have better distribution of your spores for the next bit.

Open a sterile syringe, and suck up some of your solution. Then open up one of your luer locks, and cap your syringe. Bingo bango, you have now made a spore syringe. You are a god amongst men.

Dennis Reynolds being a Golden God
“If you say another word I swear to god I will dice you into a million little pieces. And, put those pieces in a box. A glass box, that I’ll display.”

Like I said, if you’re doing this at home you don’t have to go to these lengths. You can take a few risks! There’s a great video by Philly Golden Teacher over on YouTube that’ll guide you through it, but you basically just need some water, a syringe, a shot glass, and a pressure cooker. You can’t really get away from needing a pressure cooker in this game – it’s a really worthwhile investment though if you want to get into mycology in a big way.

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Starting up a Spore Business in the UK

I’ve been asked a few times now by other people “should I start up a spore business” and uhhh, yeah, probably go for it? Maybe? Depends how much you like working I guess! Here’s my take on it, in handy readable form.

Please bear in mind that by most sensible metrics I could be described as a ‘fucking idiot’ so don’t take this as the Ten Commandments of your Life Coach, alright? It’s just words about my experience so far.

The best life coach and psychedelic priest, Jeremy Usborne
“You’ve been thinking thoughts your whole life. Look where that got you”

I think there’s loads of room left in the UK market for people to start their own spore businesses, whether that’s magic mushroom spores or gourmet LC’s. There really aren’t any “big” companies hoovering everything up, most of the businesses seem to be one/two person operations, so everything is quite small-scale. It’s very easy to get a whole load of spores, some decent kit, start up a little business and scale it up month by month. Personally, if I did it again I would do it (mostly) the same way:

First, get your products sorted, and test them. With a microscope. If everything is looking shipshape, then setup a cheap website using Big Cartel. Like I said elsewhere, it’s probably the most cost-effective way of setting up a quick and decent-looking storefront. Customers absolutely love the security they get by using a credit card or PayPal, and this combined with a nice-looking theme will get you sales.

Second, and very important, choose Stripe instead of PayPal as your payment processor (or use both if you must, but be prepared to take your money out of PayPal daily, which also pretty much guarantees they will cotton on to what you are doing quicker). Both of them are gonna pull your accounts as soon as they realise you’re slinging spores, but Stripe will continue paying out what they owe you whereas PayPal will lock your funds for six months. You’ll probably have a couple of months before this happens, which is enough time to get some money coming in, and for customers to realise that you’re legit. You absolutely do not want whatever cash you’ve got to operate with locked up in PayPal jail at this point. I had to spend most of my rent money on my Royal Mail bill at one point due to PayPal and my missus was not very happy about this.

Angry girlfriend who is a monkey
“You’ve spent the rent money on fucking what?!

Third! Once your payment options on Big Cartel are locked out, you’re gonna have to switch to a different website, one that lets you take whatever payment options you want. So hopefully you’ve spent every spare hour doing this in the background in your first couple of months, and then you can instantly change over. This is the hard bit, I guess. Assuming you’re starting off with “zero money”, like me, you are going to have to learn quickly. Fiverr is great for getting people to do the trickier bits for small sums of money (the quality can vary hugely so make sure you spend some time checking the vendor out), but unless you’ve got deep pockets you are going to be doing a lot of it yourself.

Fourth! Now can you can muck around with your site to your heart’s desire. Feel free to try adding other card payment processors, but to be honest they’re all gonna lock your funds at some point so I think it’s a bit sketchy if you like “actually having functional cashflow”. You will probably have to bite the bullet, like the rest of us, and just take payment by bank transfer and cryptocurrency. On the plus side, crypto is taxed completely stupidly in the UK (it’s a capital gains thing) so even though you’ll have to declare it, you won’t be paying a lot of tax on it. On the downside it’s less hilarious when your little pot of moon money halves in value overnight. It’s like gambling I guess.

At this point, if you wanna go mad and start making grow kits, substrate, monotubs and whatever, fill your boots. I have no idea how other people find the time for this as I am the busiest motherfucker just selling Cubensis spores, but maybe you’re more efficient than me. There are loads of guides out there on how to do this sort of thing properly. Once again, make sure you test your products – the last thing you want is to have to give a shitload of refunds (and getting lots of bad reviews) a month down the line because you made a mistake in your processes.

A picture from one of the best films ever made: Demolition Man
My boggle is that actually I think Denis Leary’s guy was the bad guy in this film, he was a dick

The only major boggle here for me is that you will find is that if you didn’t sell Cubensis spores, you would be able to take card payments and have a Shopify website and all of that normal, non-grey-area stuff, so at the end of the day would you not be better just focusing on those bits instead? It’s a difficult question, and one that I see lots of vendors all taking completely different approaches to. I think if I were doing that I’d split the businesses into two separate entities, much like another cool space-based vendor – that was a really smart move.

Like I’ve said, I think there is plenty of space left in the UK for other people to start up mycology businesses (less so in America but that’s another story), so if anyone else wants to have a crack at it, and is happy to put in quite frankly insane amounts of work (do you like days off? Uhhhhh unlucky, chief), then it’s not a bad gamble.

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IT’S A FUCKIN’ FAQ

So yeah, let’s keep this train a-rolling. Didn’t have any better ideas so thought I’d do a bit of an FAQ based on – guess what – the questions I am frequently asked. So, with no further ado, feast your saucy little eyes on the hottest FAQ this side of my OnlyFans.

Are you actually Chris from Mycopunks?

Fuck yeah, always have been mate.

Holy fuck really?

Naaaaah. Probably not. I do have these rare disassociative moments where I’m not even sure who I am or if I’m some kind of Tyler Durden-esque figment of my own psychosis but most of the time I reckon we’re separate dudes.

I’ve actually known Chris for quite a few years now, back before all the spore/substrate shenanigans, because we both used to do Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (Chris pretends he’s gonna go back one day whereas I don’t think I can be arsed with it anymore). BJJ is simultaneously one of the most useful bits of combat sport, and also the most absolutely homoerotic. It’s ace watching all these macho dudes trying to pretend to be tough whilst huffing the gas out of each other’s crotches and dripping sweat into each other’s mouths. My favourite position in it was called North/South and basically it’s where you sit on a guy’s face. Not even joking. I’m about sixteen stone too so it wasn’t a good time for anyone involved. Top quality shit right there.

Sex moves or grappling position? You decide (it’s both) Image Credit: Digitsu

Anyway, Chris popped down to the club I was training at and after strangling the living piss out of him, I found we had a lot in common (both being similar-aged pasty-looking beardy white dudes with a penchant for weirdness). I thought he was a good egg and many years later we’re still mates. Fun Fact: there were four people who helped me out a lot in getting this business started and he’s one of them.

Why just Psilocybe Cubensis spores?

Basically, because of availability. It’s easy to get loads of ‘genetic material’ for the various Cubensis phenotypes, and they sell very quickly due to the ease of use. Much, much harder to get enough of the other types of active spores, and they kind of really only appeal to the more hardcore mycologist so the supply/demand issue continues!

Why are you so handsome?

Genetics innit, and a strict dietary regime of beer, saturated animal fats, and cigarettes (yeah I know, I’m trying to quit).

Me IRL

Can I be your friend?

You can all be my friends. I’m nice like that. I would buy each and every one of you a Vienetta of your choosing.

What made you think of the charity donations?

Well, this is a contentious issue so allow me a bit of a soap-box moment: It doesn’t seem fair to me that because of a few lucky choices I don’t have to worry about keeping food in my children’s bellies any more. Now, the government should look after those that need looking after, that’s their role. It isn’t fucking cool or good and the fact there are so many fucking foodbanks in this country should be enough to make people start setting fire to stuff (and yet the Tories still manage to maintain power). I decided that as soon as my business started turning a profit, I’d start taking a slice off so that hungry people could be less hungry, and thus that’s what I did and that’s what I’m going to continue to do. I want my business to be a force for good in the world, and this is one of the ways that it can be that, and it’s probably going to be very much needed moving forward due to the coming price-of-living increases that are gonna make a whole lot more people unable to buy food. Now, really, it shouldn’t be you or I that have to do this because our Government should be caring for those that are in need, but hey, Tories innit. Just have a look at what these fucking vultures think about it all.

Why do you bring up anti-Tory stuff? Surely that puts off customers?

Yeah, good, I don’t want their money. Fuck off Tories, go away. Shoo. Dickheads.

Posted on

Wow it’s a blog by OTC about Psilocybe Cubensis stuff!

Check it out yeah boyee

My friend Matt drew me this, man has talents!

Spores are ace to look at and stuff

So, uh, hello. You’ve probably seen my writing in such places as “my Facebook page“, “my Instagram page” or “this website“. I like writing ridiculous words about things, and so I thought I might as well fire some of that into some blog posts. Probably one a week or something, who knows, likely some behind-the-scenes stuff? I expect I’m just going to write a load of old nonsense bollocks but who knows, some of it might be Solid Fucking Gold so you’ll have to look at all of it on the off chance you miss anything life-changing, eh?

Just to get this out there nice and early – I like psychedelics, and I like the ol’ magic mushrooms (whatever variety you can find, I am a fan). They are rad. I think they’re a great mental health tool when used correctly, and also they’re fun. However, and this is very fuckin’ important, I absolutely do not and can not condone or help or be okay with anyone trying to grow any of those from the spores I sell. My personal views are my own, but I run my business according to what the law is, not what I wish it was. So basically don’t go taking any of this as an invitation to message me daft incriminating stuff because even if you’re my mum I’m gonna block you, you filthy criminal – and once more, for those right at the back, my products ain’t for growing.

Anyway!

Running a magic mushroom spore business in the UK is really weird. It’s basically in this mad grey area, where you can sell magic mushroom spores, and they’re very popular and 100% legal, as long as you don’t grow the fuckers, but also lots of people and organisations get kinda weird about it. Due to these spores being illegal in like three states in America (California, Georgia, and Idaho if you’re interested), the major banks that underwrite all the payment processors just say “nah bruv” as it’s easier for them to not have to navigate that complexity for the small amount of money involved (on their scale, obvs). This makes it a real twat-ache, especially when you’re starting off and you haven’t got a lot of “social proof”. People get a bit twitchy around bank transfers sometimes, and much prefer the safety of PayPal or a charge-backable credit card, especially if you haven’t got loads of reviews, which can make it hard to get going. I’ve now got tonnes of really good reviews both here and on Reddit which is great, people seem to like what I’m doing and that makes me happy.

Oh monkeyman, how did you begin your quest?

I started off on Reddit, where I’d previously bought a load of spores myself. It was a little bit easier back then, as there were some very big subreddits that you could advertise on – they were mainly US-based, but that just meant that there were hardly any other UK vendors on there, so it wasn’t too hard to get a few sales. Some cool dudes that I’d met online started up r/EuSporeHub as a way to try to have a little base on Reddit that was more focused on this end of the world, so I signed up to that first and then American subreddits and started firing out spores. I realised quite quickly that if I was having to chat to every single customer to make a sale, I wouldn’t be able to cope and it would become quickly unmanageable.

Reddit has since gotten a bit harder to advertise on, as most subreddits now won’t let you even mention active spores at all, not even for microscopy. Reddit moderators have now gotten a bit sketched-out by it all. It’s fair enough really. I don’t give much of a fuck about platforms banning things, on one hand it’s not exactly fair, but on the other it’s their platform and they can decide what they want on there or not.

Picture of a baby orangutan that doesn't do magic mushrooms
My baby did not look this because I am not an actual Orangutan it is merely a theme I am running with

I had a look around for a cheap website solution – we’d just had a baby here at Orangutan Manor so money was a huge issue, and we were probably a couple of weeks off needing to visit a foodbank. Every quid I put into the business was a gamble with a potentially huge downside. I had to build up a piece at a time, starting off as cheaply as possible. I checked out Big Cartel (it’s like a tenner a month and it’s great), used a simple theme, bought a domain, and away I went. The only problem (I would probably still be using Big Cartel otherwise) was that they lock your payment options to Stripe or PayPal, and I already knew they would suspend my accounts and hold my money as soon as they knew I was slinging spores (that fun ol’ grey area shit again).

And inevitably that happened! Stripe were pretty good about it (not like PayPal), and just said “you can have your money but we won’t take any more payments for you” and actually told me that they had no moral judgement on my business, but also that their banks wouldn’t allow it, so it was a no-go. However, I had been a crafty old Orangutan, and like I say, I knew that getting my payment options stopped was inevitable. I’d been working every single night and most weekends, and had taught myself how to do a bit of website magic, and built this site as my “SHIT HAS HIT THE FAN” resort. I had it waiting all along, and as soon as my Big Cartel site wasn’t able to take payments, I just switched over to this one. I figured if I did it that way, I wouldn’t have weeks of downtime while I tried to learn how to make the fuckin’ CSS do what I needed it to. It was pretty knackering to be fair but here we are, it worked out alright in the end.

That’s about it for now, if anyone’s got any ideas of things you wanna see me write, feel free to message me on Insta which is definitely the best way of getting hold of me at the moment.

Cheers now! OTC