- Ben Aaronovitch = Benjamin Aaronson wrote The Rivers of London. I wonder if it’s a pen name for my grandpa’s grandpa Aaron Benjaminson, who was a farmer in Tanum.
- Two students are trying to play verbal chess while digging. The board is in their heads.
- “Well, I’m not the world’s most physical guy / But when she squeezed me tight she nearly broke my spine / Oh my Lola” /Ray Davies
- Sudden thought: Christianity is a 2000-year extension of a state of spiritual emergency that Jesus thought would last a year or two.
- Sweden has recently reformed its coinage. Convenient for me and the students: when it was time to seed trenches B and C with fresh coins before backfilling, for once we had lots of recent issues.
- Talked about books with a dinner party dominated by Swedish non-geek journalists. Almost no overlap of references. Someone read the country’s biggest newspaper’s recommended books list out. Nothing rang a bell with me. I pay no attention to Swedish-language publishing, particularly not as regards mainstream fiction.
- I’m kind of surprised that nobody’s tried to buy my loyalty. People have demanded it on the flimsiest of grounds, but nobody’s willing to pay. The stupidest case was the asshole Norwegian professor who told me to shut up online because I was hurting the workplace environment at his department. The one he was keeping me from employment at.
- Just taught 7 Wonders to nine Dutch and Spanish students. Phew!
- Threw out some hooks, and lo & behold, I got a nibble right away!
- Public transport apps really make your movements across town incredibly efficient. I could never have come up with these combos back in the days of paper time tables.
- At the Museum of World Culture: benumbed and queasy from a context-less global kaleidoscope of dissociated fragments.
- The charcoal from the hearth the students excavated earlier this week is alder, Alnus sp. This is good news because alders don’t live for very long, and so the risk of a high intrinsic age is low when we get a radiocarbon date. (The centre of an oak trunk is hundreds of radiocarbon years older than this year’s fresh growth.)
- I just deleted the automatic reminder in my calendar that has had me checking the academic job ads every third Monday for 14 years. *bliss*
- Fun idea for a Rechthaber with a lot of spare time. Apply for all academic jobs in some field and systematically & immediately publish all applications and evaluations online to invite public scrutiny. In Sweden the authorities can’t refuse to divulge any paperwork having to do with public-sector hiring.
- My new buddy the Palestinian engineer from Homs tells me his brother is at university and doing super, super poorly. On purpose. To avoid graduating and getting conscripted into Assad’s army.
- This is very weird. I no longer have any reason to improve my archaeological qualifications. If anything, I may one day have to re-train completely to become a licensed librarian or teacher. But I no longer have to publish or perish. It’s been one of my main drivers since I was 22.
- I’ve seen a dramatic improvement in Norwegian’s time-table accuracy from Gothenburg to Stockholm in the past three weeks. First week the flight was 6 hours late. Second week, 3 hours. And yesterday only ½ hour!!!