March Pieces Of My Mind #3

I like this illustration. Note the spirals in the woman's hair, repeated in the clouds. Also the hint of post-nookie intimacy suggested by this being *breakfast* tea.

I like this illustration. Note the spirals in the woman’s hair, repeated in the clouds. Also the hint of post-nookie intimacy suggested by this being *breakfast* tea.

  • Been helping Jrette study French for a test. Love making up absurd sentences for her to translate. “On my right is Charlemagne. He is wearing Father’s pink beret. If you take Father’s beret he will not be very nice. But Charlemagne gets to borrow it.”
  • Finally got it. The name of the crowdfunding site IndieGogo references indigo.
  • Listening to Tubular Bells. Can’t get over that Oldfield was 19 when he recorded it.
  • Updated Facebook Messenger and suddenly got access to this enormous backlog of messages from strangers who have tried to contact me for years, most of them quite legitimately, yet which have been automatically muted. /-:
  • Planning some fieldwork, I just got schooled in documentation by a metal detectorist. He politely told me we should collect much more accurate information about where each detectorist goes on the site, and offered to organise it.
  • 30 March was my tenth anniversary as a daily Linux user. I’ve never really had to learn the command line interface. I still don’t know how to compile source code. It just works. I particularly like that Linux installations don’t spontaneously get slower with time, and that updates don’t noticeably demand more processing power.
  • Jrette showed me some male celebs whom she finds handsome. They looked like me with hair and smaller noses. Then she asked me to show her a male celeb whose looks I like. I showed her Mattias Bärjed 15 years ago. Who, I realised, looked like me with hair.
  • Don’t write “Not to scale” in captions when you illustrate small finds. All images are to some scale even if it’s unknown to you. The only exception is if the image is funhouse mirrored so that the object is deformed.
  • It’s kind of nice to think that Swedish has no equivalents of the verbs sneer and frown. Instead we have to say “to derision-smile” and “to wrinkle the eyebrows”.
Check out the hammer marks on the copper dome / lid that Ola Lindgren excavated inside the kastal tower at Stensö in 2015! 15-20 cm diam. No fancy finial, sadly. X-ray photo by Carola Bohm.

Check out the hammer marks on the copper dome / lid that Ola Lindgren excavated inside the kastal tower at Stensö in 2015! 15-20 cm diam. No fancy finial, sadly. X-ray photo by Carola Bohm.

Domed sheet copper lid, inside view, Stensö Castle

Domed sheet copper lid, inside view, Stensö Castle

Here's my paternal grandpa Kurt Rundkvist (1911-51). He was a cheerful sort who enjoyed canoeing. I wish he'd still been around when I grew up. Luckily I did get to see a lot of my maternal grandpa Ingemar.

Here’s my paternal grandpa Kurt Rundkvist (1911-51). He was a cheerful sort who enjoyed canoeing. I wish he’d still been around when I grew up. Luckily I did get to see a lot of my maternal grandpa Ingemar.

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65 thoughts on “March Pieces Of My Mind #3

  1. Birger@44 – Don’t generalise.

    Probing ahead (of advancing the tunnel face) is now standard practice. As it carrying out competent ground investigations before tunnelling even commences.

    But you *do* need to choose your tunnelling contractor carefully. Not choosing the tender with the lowest price is a pretty good idea.

    Eric@50 – Bertha bored a circular hole, like all tunnel boring machines. (Not all tunnels are bored – some are drill and blasted. The choice depends a lot on the ground conditions.) Circular openings underground perform particularly well under earthquake forces, which in any case tend to be attenuated with depth – they deform, but then resume their original shape. Lots of documentation of this.

    Suggestion – don’t always assume that engineers are idiots who don’t know what they are doing. Only some of us are. And some knowingly do the wrong thing for money. It happens.

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  2. Suggestion – don’t always assume that engineers are idiots who don’t know what they are doing. Only some of us are.

    Oh, I know there are good engineers out there–I have been fortunate to work with a few over the years. But there are also far too many idiots with engineering degrees. Witness the large numbers of climate change denialists who are engineers–whenever somebody circulates a list of “scientists” who claim global warming isn’t happening, you will find that the overwhelming majority of them are actually engineers.

    Cascadia is a subduction zone. In previous earthquakes land has been known to drop significantly in elevation. So the risk to this tunnel is that it would be flooded with sea water (via the ends of the tunnel, not necessarily the middle) in a major earthquake. But as I said, there aren’t good options here; it’s quite possible that this tunnel is the least bad option. Simply replacing the viaduct with a new elevated highway is definitely a poor choice, from an aesthetic as well as an engineering point of view.

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  3. BBC are reporting at least three dead, and several injured. The beer company that owns the truck says it was stolen this morning while the driver was making a delivery. The incident is being treated as a terrorist attack for now, but it may not have been terrorism related, especially if the truck was stolen only a few hours before.

    When I visited Stockholm, both my hotel and the conference center were in that part of town, and the route between the two (as well as to the restaurants of Gamla Stan) took me along Dröttninggatan. And I remember that the Ahléns department store is a landmark along that street.

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  4. Eric@55 – If there is an M9 megathrust earthquake on the Cascadia subduction zone, Seattle is going to have a lot more to worry about than the inundation of one tunnel.

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  5. “Marmite is closely correlated with the End of Days.” And Poms.

    Yet another reason you should only eat Vegemite.

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