Dr. Hurley’s Summer Vacation


ear Intrepid Snake-Oilers,

We know you may have been missing us of late. Never fear; there is reason for our absence, and it is not because we don’t love you anymore. No! The reason behind our recent absence is twofold.

Firstly, Dr. Hurley himself has been travelling and so our offices have been taking a well earned break (though dearest Seamus is a wonderful man, he can sometimes be a workhorse who demands similar stamina of his workforce). Secondly, we editors feel that it is time for a spring (or summer) clean around these parts, and so we’ve been putting our energies into revitalising Dr. Hurley’s Snake-Oil Cure and the SnakeOilCure.com site.

So while we while away the wee hours working on sprucing things up, enjoy what you missed from Snake-Oil Cure Vol. II, Weeks 21-23:

What else can we do while you’re away? we hear you yell. During our spring/summer clean, we’d like you to find your best writerly, artistical, poetry-loving, video and music-making friends, and encourage them to submit to Snake-Oil Cure. We love our regular Snake-Oilers, but we want more than ever to encourage newbies and give them a chance at getting published. So, here’s what you should do:

  1. Regular contributors: If you have something for us, then submit! If you have many things for us, then we’d ask that you try to work on a Snake-Oil exclusive, and send us your best work! You are those who keep Seamus happy, and keep us editors engaged and thankful to be running Snake-Oil Cure. Our favourite submissions will kick off our revamped site!
  2. Newbies: Submit! Most of all, we want to encourage new submissions from new writers, artists and the like. Submission guidelines here.
  3. All and sundry: Submit to one of our ongoing series. Check out the Trees series and our Smithsonian series (covered by the Smithsonian Institution’s blog!).

Although currently lost in the winding back roads of County Kerry, Dr. Hurley is eager to see your finest new submissions upon his return, so don’t let him down!

We will resurface on September 10th, 2012, with brand new writing, art, multimedia, and potable content, as well as a slight revamp for SnakeOilCure.com. We thank you for your patronage, and eagerly anticipate your correspondence.



Dr. Hurley’s Summer Contest Series № 2: Wet/Dry

Dear Snake-Oil devotees,

The doctor has informed us that he is inspired by the extremes of weather we have been experiencing around the world this Summer. While on a research mission, we, the Editors, experienced a taste of England’s Worst Summer Ever – by which they mean rain, floods, cold, and damp. Meanwhile, the States are experiencing history’s worst-ever drought. Where England’s strawberries and potatoes are rotting in the ground, America’s waves of proverbial amber grain are shriveling under an ever-hotter sun.

Never one to despair, Dr. Hurley has chosen to assign these phenomena as the basis of his next Summer Short-Short contest! Send us 100 words of fiction about Rain or Drought (or other major meteorological phenomenon if you’re in a more wintry clime) by next Sunday, July 29!

Hop to, writerly friends! We look forward to your scribblings!

Sincerely yours,

EEJ & DLR, Eds.

Dr. Hurley’s Tonic № 006


onic to Enhance Escapism and Reduce the Malaise Brought on by the End of Summer.

  • 4 parts rhubarb juice
  • 2 parts Vodka
  • 1 part Licor 43

In order to pretend summer is not over, shake 4 parts of rhubarb juice, 2 parts of vodka and one part of Licor 43 with ice cubes and strain into a stemmed glass. Take a sip, close your eyes and daydream yourself to your favorite Spanish beach. Repeat as needed.

Note: Dr. Hurley originally prescribed a mixture of vodka, rhubarb juice, and his own tincture which involved citrus, aromatics, and vanilla.  The closest approximation of his recipe we have been able to find in today’s liquor stores is Spain’s golden Licor 43.

recipe sourced by Wiebke Henning