“Sheds on Prescription”

A  recent article in the British Medical Journal suggests that doctors may be finally giving up on pills as a solution to all ills.  A study by Professor Alan White of Leeds Metropolitan University, suggests that a peaceful retreat may help lower blood pressure.  He goes on to add that pottering about with odd jobs may have a positive impact on self-esteem.  Actually, I didn’t know I had a problem with my self-esteem but if the good doctor says so, I suppose I must.

It is timely that I saw this article because I am due for a medication review shortly so it gives me the chance to think about the shed I need in the garden – strictly for medical purposes of course!

Nothing too small – as big as a garage at least, and heated – definitely heated.  Plenty of light – a view of the garden and a veranda – but out of sight and hearing of any wifely calls.  I could manage a kettle for my tea or a flask with coffee and brandy in the winter.  There would need to be room service for elevenses and sandwiches for lunch (with the crusts cut off).  Maybe I could have a barrel of beer on tap or brew my own?  I could bring out my collection of Malt Whisky and quietly sample one or two (or three a day).  Even have some other connoisseurs around for an afternoon tipple.  May not be too good for the blood pressure though?

I could also move all my books into the shed – all the ones I have and haven’t read and the ones I want to read again one day.  Then I could leave them lying open all around the shed at interesting pages just in case reading takes my fancy at any moment.   Newspapers – I would need at least two delivered to the shed everyday, and if I didn’t read them, I could stack them in a pile in the corner until I could get around to reading them.

Corners – now there is a thought – corners are always a good place to tidy things away, so as well as the corner for old newspapers, I could have a corner for string, you never know when you might need string – and another corner for bamboo canes, old broom handles and long bits of metal, absolutely essential in any garden shed (and for low blood pressure) (and self-esteem).  A corner for a grow bag for tomatoes near the window, and another corner for a grow bag for hops for my home-brewed beer.  A corner for the plastic Christmas tree and another corner for the illuminated Stetson hatted Santa Claus that my Texan friend, John Tripplehorn, sent me.  In fact, maybe I could use all the Christmas tree lights to light the shed , then I could stay out there on dark nights.  But I would need mince pies and sherry to get into the true spirit of Christmas all year.  So that’s a shed with at least six corners – better have eight because corners seem to fill up quite quickly.


Oh and don’t forget the shelves – you can never have too many shelves.  Obviously I need shelves for the books – strong shelves so they don’t fall down like the ones in the house did.  Then there needs to be shelves for everything else – all the de-cluttering we are going to do in the house:-

  • Shelves for all the gadgets we have bought and never used ;
  • Shelves for all he booze I have bought and never drunk – Plum Brandy from Czechoslovakia, Marsala for the Zabaglone that I never made ;
  • Big wide shelves for all the suitcases that have long since be superseded by other suitcases ;
  • Shelves for all the ornaments dotted all around the house.  Dozens of ornaments which will fill at least three walls and bring me joy every time I look at them ;
  • Shelves for all the empty vases around the house.  The small ones that are too small; the big ones that are too big.  I will leave in the house only the ones that are just right – if I can figure that out ;
  • A shelf with hooks for saucepans that we might need one day ;
  • Several shelves for box files that contain bank statements, bills and letters from the taxman that go back to when I first earned money as a paper boy ;
  • Last, but not least, in my garden shed, shelves for jars and pots.  Jars full of nails, nuts, bolts, labels, can tops, wire, more string and assorted screws that I might use one day.  The pots are left over from the plants I have bought over the last ten years.  It seems such a shame to throw them away.

With the house de-cluttered, we should be able to turn some of the upstairs rooms into extra walk-in wardrobes and my garden shed will feel just like home.


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5 Responses to “Sheds on Prescription”

  1. By god sir everything one dreamt off but the dry ‘NETTY’ where you dispose of your paperwork and book pages one by one hung on a nail in a covenient corner: Off course the cheap editions for a final trim but the glossy’s for your initial works of wonder??? and after all that the ‘Netty’ could be composted to the garden, and reintoduced in your grow bag, an effluent and sweetness of life giving breaths. John what a load of C___, but good reading my mind went all over the place, and wifey dismisses my comments as being very rude?-I trust not from a fellow reader, and maintainer of sanity. David

  2. Maureen o'Neill says:

    How my husband would have once loved a shed on prescription. As it was we bought a second very large shed 20′ by 10′ and then had the two fixed together with a large gap in the middle. Filled with wood turning stuff , hooks shelves jars etc containing various small items it was his special place,- he did share it with some field mice. The neighbours fitted the first shed with curtains and a rude name plate for the shed but they soon became filthy and were taken down. Joking apart I think his shed kept him sane (and me) as we both had little bolt holes and he was not under my feet as I cooked and did housework (and I did in those days.) It also meant he produced some very good articles in wood.
    I think a shed on prescription is a very good idea. !!! An extra prescription for various tools would be a good idea too!!!!

  3. Champion237 says:

    John For your and my shed reading is this book (Note the aurthor). My father gave me this book to read as a young teenager in 1956. (My father read this book as a youngman in the late 1920’s so it has been around?). I was totally enthralled by the letters, and also with Rovering to Sucess by Baden Powell (BOY SCOUT VIntage): These two books gave a lively minded teenager a perspective on life as how to treat people, and behave as a responsible adult. Both books I found impressionable, and would recommend for your shed shelves on prescription reading while waiting for the doctor or the nurse in her long black nylons, pretty blue uniform and smart white cap, and her blue cape OOOHHH AARR???

    By the way this was triggered off by the google page-looking for Smiles and Grumbles John Graham, The next entry down was John Graham and the Gutternberg Press- I must be retaining some of my memoery John, so yes my flat is not large enough for a shed, but my memories are still vivid and very real-A large expanse of questionable facts and know how.
    I wish you all good reading

    Title: Letters from a Self-Made Merchant to His Son
    Being the Letters written by John Graham, Head of the House
    of Graham & Company, Pork-Packers in Chicago, familiarly
    known on ‘Change as “Old Gorgon Graham,” to his Son,
    Pierrepont, facetiously known to his intimates as “Piggy.”

    Author: George Horace Lorimer

    Release Date: June 28, 2007 [EBook #21959]

    Language: English

  4. Lola says:

    Great stuff, you helped me out so much!

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