Scandinavian archaeology, history, skepticism, books and music
September Pieces Of My Mind #1
Google Play Music’s randomiser has recently served me up with two songs about extremely talkative girlfriends. In the Spongetones’ “My Girl Maryanne” the singer finds the woman’s chattiness adorable. In Gap Dream’s “Immediate Life Sentence” he finds it annoying and concludes the song “I don’t need to get laid that bad, I’ll just stay home and get high”.
The crappy one of Sweden’s two big pop-sci monthlies has been using freebie trinkets in its marketing for at least 30 years now. They sent me the alarm clock I used in high school. Now they’re trying to entice me to subscribe with a little metal puzzle.
Heard a recent arrival get a pleasant lesson in how public-sector Sweden works: dude tried to pay for using a computer at the library, was happy when he understood that it’s free.
My colleague who organises conferences for the Academy of Letters reports that, unusually, Piranesi scholars are not allergics or vegetarians.
I was prepared for this Judith Tarr novel being science fiction. I was not prepared for it dealing extensively with psionic abilities and horses.
Jrette just asked “What is the definition of [this one Chinese syllable]?” Not “What does it mean?” *geek dad squee*
Magpie pecked at my find bags in the yard and pulled out some Medieval animal bones.
Woah. Bigger excavation team means more finds. Last year we brought home 3.8 kg of animal bones from the castle ruins we’re studying. This year it’s 24.5 kg. I’m going to have to apply for dedicated osteology funding.
Jrette is waiting for the rice cooker to finish making porridge. I suggested that she honour her Germanic heritage and have a ham sandwich to tide her over.
I’m Fb buddies with this guy from the boonies. Met him several times, really nice, good dependable sort. He’s clever but doesn’t have much education and isn’t the bookish type. And oh, the cartoons and other Fb circulatory material he posts… I don’t even know where to begin. The unthinking sexism and xenophobia are just staggering. It isn’t overt hate stuff. It’s intended as humour, mostly. Building on an assumption of shared views of society. I wish I could show the guy that if I shared a few of his postings people would unfriend me here in the hundreds.
Sometimes you come across these people who don’t understand common social boundaries. I put up an online ad to give away an old TV. “Email me and collect the TV.” This woman finds my phone number instead, calls me and tries to a) get me to deliver the TV to her home 12 km away, b) get one of my friends to deliver the TV, c) get me to throw in a TV table as well, d) get me to lend her a trolley.
So annoying when scifi writers put archaeology into their stories without researching any real archaeology or its terminology. Nancy Kress calls archaeological finds “relics”. Judith Tarr has excavators “sifting remnants” and looking for gold and manuscripts. *facepalm*
Nightmare occasioned by our recent kitchen renovation: I come home and find that my wife and my dad have agreed between themselves to remove the entire (flat) roof of our house and replace it with a high saddle roof.
Reading this paper in English that would be decidedly difficult to understand if I didn’t know Scandy and recognised what words the author is failing to translate correctly into English.
“Lapland: home of the Lap Dance!”
Embarrassed. One of my students has a learning disability and so has been granted help with note-taking during lectures. I solved this by asking for a volunteer student who takes a lot of notes anyway for himself, and then introduced the guy with the disability to the note-taking guy. ”Just shoot his notes with your phone after each lecture.” Except. Except that I grabbed hold of the wrong student. One with the same initial as the one with the learning disability. Who is probably really confused about why I singled him out and told him to copy the other student’s notes, without a word of explanation.
Google Inbox allows you to preset three times o’clock to which you can snooze email. I just moved my morning back to 6:30, my afternoon to 12 and my evening to 17:30.
Software fail, LibreOffice spreadsheet. If you type CTRL-A and sort a sheet, the software doesn’t limit the job to lines with any data in them. It doggedly sorts all sixty-four thousand whatever lines, effectively freezing up for a minute or two.
I sailed a Nordisk Familjebåt today (length 8.85 m) together with its friendly owner in a local competition. Strong wind, sunshine and the beautiful surroundings of Stockholm’s inner archipelago, very enjoyable. And I also saw a sailing hydrofoil for the first time, which absolutely blew my mind. That shit looks like CGI! And it zipped past so fast!
The English habit of referring to noblemen by their titles — “the Earl of Leicester” or even just “Leicester” — makes it really hard to understand narratives about them. I tend to conflate them all into one faceless piece of scenery, the Title of Place Name.
Had to look up “withal”. It’s an adverb meaning besides, therewith and nevertheless.