Delusions after mistaking one drug for another with a similar name

Setting: Mars, mid to late 2030s (for a The Martian fanfic)

If possible, I need my character to mistake one drug he needs to take (and is not familiar with) with another drug with a similar name that ends up giving him delusions for a short time. (He's going to think he's a cat. Don't ask.)


  • He's trying to be careful, so the drugs need to be reasonably close in spelling, at least enough for a layman to mix them up. He doesn't know how to pronounce them, so that doesn't matter.

  • Both drugs need to ones that a group of astronauts spending a month on Mars could conceivably need.

  • The drug he's trying to take needs to be a fix for something fairly obviously wrong with him. It does not matter how serious the medical issue is, so long as taking the wrong drug won't leave him dead or disabled, so anything from treating an upset stomach to something he'd need to take after performing surgery on himself will work for story purposes.

  • It is not a drug for a chronic condition, simply because there won't be a long-term supply available. This, unfortunately, seems to rule out antidepressants, unless there are any that are used short-term?

While I have found some similarly named drugs where one can cause delusions, I haven't found one with a 'partner' that he would need and might be available. (He doesn't have Parkinson's or HIV, isn't trying to induce ovulation, isn't trying to treat a mental illness, etc.)

Search terms used:
1) Drugs that cause delusions, prescription drugs that cause delusions, drug side effect delusions
2) Similar drug names, confused drug names, similar drug names, drug names that look alike
...Followed by cross-checking until my eyes wanted to bleed.

Roses and Paintings in 1920s New England

EDIT: So far I've been searching "red rose varieties" (and other arrangements of those words), which led me to a site containing information on the oldest varieties of hybrid tea roses, but I'm not sure what to narrow it down to specifically to find "red and white roses a very wealthy person would have growing outside his mansion".  As for paintings, I have now found a list of the most expensive paintings ever sold, but I feel like it would stretch credibility to have a fictional character in a fictional place own a painting known to be in the possession of a real-life person in 2016 (or would it?) Would it matter, since this is a fictional story, or would I have to find some means of creating a backstory for how the painting came into my character's possession?

I'm working Google pretty hard right now, but I'm still undecided on this. Basically I'm trying to find varieties of very deep, richly-hued red hybrid tea roses most likely to have been growing in a garden or involved in the landscaping of a mansion in 1920s New England. So far I've identified...that hybrid tea roses do indeed grow well in New England, and that there's a variety of rose that smells like oranges but is not really what I'm looking for (although I feel like I could use that whole orange-scented thing).

Does anyone have any particular opinions on this?

Another issue I'm having a bit of a time with is finding paintings an extremely wealthy person would be likely to display in the public areas of their home-- I've been trying hard not to go with super obvious names like Monet, but I also keep getting tangled up in trying to identify the worth of different paintings at that time in history since the value would have changed by now. The story is actually set in an unidentified year, but it's somewhere between 2006-2016, so I don't think their worth would be the same within that ten-year span as when the paintings were first created-- but the paintings do need to be pieces that would have been hanging in wealthy homes in the twenties.

(I can explain the time thing if necessary, haha.)

Plausibility/details check: how can I turn ~100 people into zombies with no one noticing

I'm not sure if this is *quite* appropriate for here, but I'm running out of ideas. My research has consisted of things like asking my boss (who is sort of a plane crash expert), positing probable scenarios on Yahoo Answers as questions, and so on. I have no idea how to actually search this one.

Time: now-ish. Probably either right before Christmas, or right before Spring Break. Location: ideally, western Colorado, though I can move them if I *have* to.

First, how my zombies work.Collapse )

But I'm trying to form the first zombie hive, back when only... maybe a few thousand people in the world are infected, and there have been a single-digit number of actual cases of zombieism.

So, I need a situation where:
1. ~100-120 people are in a relatively confined area.
2. One of them dies, at a time/in a situation where the rest of them can't get away easily, but are at least mostly still alive, though I'll need at least a few to be on the verge of dying.
3. Once we have ~100 zombies, I need them to be able to walk away from said confined area, *without* anyone being able to be *sure* that they did so for at least a month. This is the part that's proving tricky.

Scenarios that I've tried, that have been shot down:

A. Plane crash, with the survivors destroying the plane. It has been deemed implausible that they would, with the materials at hand, be able to destroy it thoroughly enough that investigators wouldn't be able to tell, fairly quickly, that there were no bodies.

B. Plane crash, with the survivors *hiding* the plane. Even with a helpful avalanche and the like, it has been deemed implausible that they could hide a crashed commercial flight long enough that it wouldn't be found and uncovered long before my hive of zombies have had a month or so to go about their business.

A few people suggested that I use a bus crash, but I think that would have, if anything, even *more* problems with the crash being found too soon, since busses tend to travel on, you know, actual roads.

So, any other suggestions, or any ways you can think of to make a plane or bus crash work?

I don't mind unlikely, as long as it's not actively implausible, or at least not so implausible that it breaks anyone's disbelief suspenders.

Travel to Athens and Alexandria, Regency (1812) - Papers and contacts - FOUND

Greetings all,

It's 1812. My MC is in Athens (Father went to try and snaffle some antiquities but instead drank himself to death). The family had a firman (authorised travel document for the Ottoman Empire), but now my MC is all that's left, and has to make their way back to the UK via Alexandria.

TL:DR Who is the British Representative in Athens and in AlexandriaCollapse )

OMG - Folks! Folks! Major piece of VERY useful information. I present to you the list of EVERY British Consular Official to Turkey and the Levant from 1581 to 1860. It's a PDF, and of COURSE I've saved myself a copy. Click here for the download.

Short answer: Alexandria - Samuel Briggs who was Pro-Consul at the same time as he was agent for the Levant company
Athens: Spyridon Logothetis (with his relative Alexandros taking over some years later).

Airport security check gone wrong

Hi, all!

I'm looking for any and all information on how an airport security check could go horribly wrong, specifically at Heathrow airport with today's security measures.

I googled things like "airport security checks", "Heathrow security checks", "failed airport security checks", "Heathrow security officers", all that kind of thing. Most of the information I got was on how to make security checks go smoothly, and what a wonderful people-person job it is to be an airport security officer, while the "failed airport security checks" search gave me lists of all the times airport security has failed to find a weapon or something, not what happens to a person when they fail a security check.

My scenario is this - Character A works as a security officer at Heathrow Airport. Character B is heading off on a business trip and is going through the customary process to board his plane. Character A recently met Character B and has reason to strongly dislike him, as well as suspect him of a crime committed against someone he cares about. I need to know all the ways in which A could make B's life miserable while going through this security check, in a semi-comedic sort of way that B would think is just because of the dislike between them, but actually serves the added purpose of A searching for evidence. I also need to know what part of the security process it would be best to have A doing. I'm thinking he's the guy who does the wanding and patting down, simply to make B as uncomfortable and intimidated as possible? (Do they still do wanding? I kept trying to search for that, too, but I'm still not clear on it. And if they do still use the wand, is it used by the same person who does the pat-downs?) Also, is there any other part of the security check he might do, or would that be his whole job? How many other security officers would he have to convince to play along with his little scheme?


Prohibited items on Airlines


I'm trying to find out about food items prohibited on domestic airline flights within the US. I've gone to specific airline websites (Delta, British Airways, AA) to see what items are prohibited- liquids, flammables etc are listed, but when it comes to food items it seems vague.

What I want to know if someone is flying within the US could they take food items such as raw meet (in a cooler bag), smoked meat, cooked food etc in their hand luggage.

My premise is a young man going away to college and his parents filling his suitcase with food! Has anybody done this, especially on the more smaller carriers such as Great Lake Airlines (which I've checked but their website is very basic). I imagine smaller carriers more relaxed, and the larger ones more stricter. But I could be wrong.

Any advice greatly appreciated!
  • Current Location: My sofa
  • Current Mood: creative

Holiday Food/Drink and Teaching Secondary Education in England Circa 1970s

Hi guys,

I've recently been looking into the educational systems and holiday customs of different countries for something I've been working on for awhile. Background and setting under the cut:

Questions and links to things I"ve found as well as background.Collapse )

Any and all help appreciated, and I'm sorry if I've misunderstood anything. Thanks again!

Edit: I also had one more question about what school uniforms would have looked like and at what age(s) they were worn. What did they generally look like? It seems to vary a lot, but what do male and female uniforms usually consist of?

Losing checked carry-ons and having them returned in weird circumstances.

Hi. Long time lurker, first time poster. I have some questions about a scenario I'm working on, one of which mostly needs rubber stamping and one of which I need help developing. I hope this is ok.

Setting: Christmas 2014 in a modern superhero setting (thing DCTV or MCU pre-AOU)

Search Terms: "lost checked carry on," "lost luggage" "delayed luggage," "checked carry on" "return lost luggage to origin" "lost luggage policy," "checked baggage reimbursement", "how long delayed baggage"

Search Terms for Secondary Issue: "temporary custody" "runaway law" "michigan runaway law" "new york runaway law"

TLDR: I've figured out how to strand my teenage character without clothes on an emergency holiday trip to a relative's, but I've never flown and am not sure where the missing bags will turn up. I need them to go back to the origin, not the destination, or to reach the destination in 24-36 hours but the minor not to show up to claim them until reaching the airport 36 hours later. I also have some tentative conclusions about the custody situation with the kid that I need rubberstamped.

Scenario: I have a 17-year-old AMAB nonbinary character, let's call them M, who attends a high school in NYC and lives with their gay brother C. C is attacked and his family threatened, and so from his hospital bed he directs a few friends to take M home to pack a bag and books M a flight to stay with their only living relatives, an estranged Uncle and Aunt in Detroit. M packs a carry-on, which is checked due to late boarding and full overheads, and travels from Newark to Detroit after a layover in either Orlando or Atlanta. The luggage doesn't make it to Detroit.

Trigger Warning for Transphobia and Child Abuse in regards to secondary concern re: custody. Also lots of detail not necessary for travel question.Collapse )

My main issue is, if M's lost bag goes back to Aunt and Uncle in Detroit, M will never get it back. It would be helpful storywise if they eventually got it. If M reports the bag stolen, will it be sent to Detroit or Newark? If it's sent to Detroit and it was delayed because of a tight layover, would it arrive by the next day, or the day after? Could the evil Uncle prevent M from finding out about the missing bags when they come in, but S&G find a way to help them pick the bags up when they head to DTW to fly back to New York? How worried do I need to be about Aunt and Uncle, delayed luggage reimbursement, and fraud claims?

From the custody point of view, does what I have make sense given Michigan law? Would the police permit the child to go with two unrelated adults with a reputation for protecting children and a long personal history with the kid? And if so, would they insist charges be filed against the uncle or a hospital trip be made with the teenager?

Thanks for your help.