February Pieces Of My Mind #3

This guy was just chilling behind our house
  • I find it really remarkable how pretty much all narrative scenes in Ancient Mediterranean art can be explained with reference to a surviving text. The Scandy pagan imagery is way later yet often incomprehensible to us.
  • A couple of 11th century runic spell amulets found at Köpingsvik invoke Christ and the Virgin Mary on behalf of a woman named Oluv. She is being threatened by ”the roaring giant”, ”the three-headed giant” and ”the unmanly/homosexual giant”.
  • Howard Williams and I have recently been used as a decorative citation in a Taiwanese journal paper titled “Energy Saving and Carbon Neutrality in the Funeral Industry”. The authors cite us completely irrelevantly to support the claim that cemeteries use valuable arable land. I’m guessing that they googled “landscape +cemetery”. 😃
  • Have you ever received a dick stereophotogram?
  • As a middle-class 1980s teen I was really surprised to learn that type setters were considered (skilled) manual labour. I have since learned that my unreflected intuition wasn’t far off: they were always the working class’ intellectual elite and started the first Swedish labour union.
  • Remember when Putin was seen just as this ex-KGB spook, evil but wily and rational, basically quite competent?
  • Not sure about the causal relationship here, but on the day when Russia invaded Ukraine, I signed up for a rookie time slot at a comedy club.
  • German colleague sends a message on behalf of Jenny Smith. Gets the phrasing wrong, begins her message IN THE NAME OF JENNY SMITH…
  • Suddenly remembered how you’d hear your 5-y-o kid come running out of their room and you just knew that any second now they’d stub their toe on a threshold or trip over something and start hollering.
  • Mechanised passenger railway services. They’ve been around for almost 200 years.
  • American tank mechanics and veterans are advising Ukrainian civilians on Twitter about how to take out tanks in an urban environment. :-0
  • I just heard for the first time what must be one of the oldest jokes in planetary science: Venus is Earth’s hot sister.

Author: Martin R

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

7 thoughts on “February Pieces Of My Mind #3”

    Yes, we have quite a Jenny Smith cult going in Germany. And many people who translate word-for-word when they should not.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Me on 22 February: “Its hard to believe Putin would actually invade because it would result in massive sanctions, a military buildup in the EU and NATO, and probably either a long and bloody conventional war or a long and bloody insurgency. Putin is a thug but he is part of the reality-based community and he avoids military adventures except to protect friendly governments.”


  3. -“Viltfoder Granngården 20 kg” för 189 kr skall passa för rådjur och andra hjortdjur om du vill locka dom bort från din trädgård.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I can think of two reasons a lot of Scandinavian stories from the pagan era were lost. The society didn’t have a big literate culture so a lot of stories were never written down and a lot of stories were lost when Christianity was adopted. I’m guessing a lot of stories fell into obscurity as new stories were imported and old stories restructured. In contrast, Greek stories got a boost when the Romans adopted them, and Jewish stories got a boost with the spread of Christianity.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I was always told that the difference between blue collar and white collar work was that you were more likely to get dirt on your clothes doing blue collar work. There were a lot of highly skilled, well paid blue collar jobs. Typographers were pretty high up there, but I gather tool and die makers were up at the top. My family’s back up plan for me, if I couldn’t get the credentials for a white collar job, were to get me into plumbing. There was a guild, but one of my second or third uncles was a plumber, so I had a connection.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. It does feel weird that railroads and steamboats have been around for two centuries. We always think of the past as not being mechanized. Automobiles and airplanes have been around for over a century. In another thirty years, computers will have been around for a full one hundred. I probably won’t have to see it, but I’m sure a few people will notice and get that feeling.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: