November Pieces Of My Mind #2

A pretty nice view on the road I cycle to town
  • Re-reading Trollkarlens hatt / Finn Family Moomintroll. As a teen I found it childish and a little silly. Now I love it again. ❤
  • OK young folks, of course you revel in health and beauty and youth. But there is more to come! You have never yet experienced the sublime fulfilment of finally tweezing an elusive bristle out of one’s ear!
  • All political parties emphasise “freedom”. The Right means freedom for rich people. The Left means freedom from rich people.
  • Santería is an African diasporic religion that developed in Cuba between the 16th and 19th centuries. It arose through a process of syncretism between the traditional Yoruba religion of West Africa and the Roman Catholic form of Christianity. All Finnish men named Santeri are members.
  • Europeans hate US elections where the Electoral College overrides the popular vote. But if the EU had a federal president chosen by popular vote, the <10 million Swedish voters would have very little influence on who was elected.
  • Impressed by Dr. Hannes Rolf’s new PhD thesis titled A Union for the Homes — collective mobilisation, tenant organising and power struggle on the rental market in Stockholm and Gothenburg 1875-1942 (main text in Swedish).
  • The Viking Period ship burial currently under excavation at Gjellestad is only 5.4 km from the Swedish border. Dammit!
  • The classic and highly inventive horror writer Arthur Machen translated Casanova’s autobiography into English.
  • Cycled home from town, took an hour, then had hot chocolate and my own toasted sourdough with Västerbotten cheese before bedtime. ❤
  • Using the ZooMS method, Sam Presslee of the University of York has identified the animal species sacrificed prior to the building of the Aska platform mound: horse, as an unnamed 1980s osteologist had already determined. Also the animal species whose bone was made into gaming pieces used in the Aska mead-hall: right whale, Eubalaena glacialis, Sw. nordkapare. This beast measures 13-16 m in length and weighs about 100 tonnes. The bone was probably collected from a hunted or beached whale on the coast of Norway and traded via Kaupang or Heimdalsjordet.
  • Should I try to get the phrase “Don’t Hassle The Hoff” into my report on the fieldwork at Hassle in Glanshammar?
  • Listening to a podcast about Japanese military & civilian mass suicides on Saipan and Guam in 1944. And I recall the Swedish Extreme Right’s “victory or death” rhetoric in the 2018 election. Oh, you little absolute shits.
  • Old guy posts a map of a nearby area dating from the 1700s where all the relatively low-lying agricultural land and bog has been cut out to represent the sea. Claims that this is what the Medieval shorelines were like. I take a deep breath, get a real shoreline map from the Geological Survey’s site (where anyone can get it) and post it with some friendly words.

Author: Martin R

Dr. Martin Rundkvist is a Swedish archaeologist, journal editor, skeptic, atheist, lefty liberal, bookworm, boardgamer, geocacher and father of two.

4 thoughts on “November Pieces Of My Mind #2”

  1. “Europeans hate US elections where the Electoral College overrides the popular vote. But if the EU had a federal president chosen by popular vote, the <10 million Swedish voters would have very little influence on who was elected."

    Of course, one could argue that Sweden as a country, following the one-person-one-vote principle, shouldn’t have a disproportionally large say. The real problem, of course, is the idea of a federal president with real political power. A parliamentary system, with proportional representation of course, is highly superior.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. “Should I try to get the phrase “Don’t Hassle The Hoff” into my report on the fieldwork at Hassle in Glanshammar?”

    Only if you can get in something about a knight riding in, perhaps looking for freedom.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. “Re-reading Trollkarlens hatt / Finn Family Moomintroll. As a teen I found it childish and a little silly. Now I love it again. “

    I don’t know who originally said this:

    There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.

    Liked by 2 people

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