24.08.06: y'know, i'm not dead.
no. i'm just in rugby, and we can argue the differences later. i thought i better just say "hi", mention that the full story is shaping up nicely, i'm having lots of fun and you can hear about it as soon as i'm settled. this seems a million miles away, although really it's only about 4000.
also sorry for not replying to emails very well, but i can't type since i let my nails grow to 10cm long, or got sunburnt on the ends of my fingers, or rubbed the tips off on a sanding machine. something like that.
why did the chicken cross the road? cos it was easier than the atlantic..
07.08.06: travel interruption. stop.
i just had a bit of a scare. flipping through the archives i noticed a few enteries were missing. gone. not slightly lost or hiding in some weird file, but actually 'no more'. so i panicked, freaked out by the thought of losing things that i've written, no matter how meaningless. you do the obvious things, like check the google cache and the other lower search engines, but i found nothing. it was a mystery as to where they'd gone. i must have deleted them after too much coffee.
this story does have a happy ending though, because i'm not one to give up when it comes to solving problems on the internet. i started searching for combinations of my domain and dates that i thought might be missing and finally got lucky. msn has two cached versions of my homepage from different dates (is this something they've started doing or is it a glitch?). the second cached page was from around two weeks ago so had one of the missing post but not the other. i went back to yahoo, and this is the only time i'll ever be grateful for yahoo's crapness, they'd spidered my domain without the 'www' (did slurp not notice my 301?) last week.
so that rather narcissistic emergency is over. but it's got me thinking, how much have i lost by careless errors over the years? and those enteries where only noticed as awol because they had images in them. all that meaningless crap just drifting off into the ether. i guess you wont be losing any sleep, huh?
04.08.06: so that's it, i'm gone. i'm in oslo til friday and then in denmark til tuesday. after that i have no idea. i'll be in brighton on the 22nd though, and i'll be looking for a nice pub at around half seven. who's with me?
yesterday was wicked. i'd sent out all of my invoices for the work i've been doing the last couple of months and they came back rather favourable. one of the companies actually paid me more than i'd invoiced them for (an extra 42%), "due to the quality of what you have done + the speed you have done it". who ever heard of a loan company being generous?
i think what that really means is i undercharge for my services ;]
to celebrate i bought a 'pepe original', my second this week and the best corporate licourice ice cream money can buy from any decent kiosk. that shit is the shittest. i also went for a cycle along islands brygge, before realising i needed my camera and cycled all the way home and back again. there's huge sculptures all along the front made of various railway remnents and they were screaming to be photographed. further west there's also a place where you can go swimming right in the harbour, without being surrounded by the walls of the main swimming thing there. if i could explain that better i would have done. you know that right?
anyway, i have like.. cleaning and packing and sandwich making to do. so stop bothering me and wasting my time when i'm busy. okay?
oh. and guys, this really isn't the way to fight for net neutrality. all you're doing is demonstrating how disposable and full of crap the internet really is. but then, actually i should just shut up. it's probably perfect. this is what the internet's been reduced to so what better way to speak to the teeming masses? at least it's better than moby's pathetic attempt.
also, can someone explain to me how this effects people outside of the united states? because i can't really figure it out.
02.08.06: we had an almighty storm but i missed it on account of watching 'true romance' and trying to sleep (emphasis mine). the crack-a-booms and pounding of rain filled my head and it just wouldn't let up. like chinese water torture, only not at all.
yesterday morning, out by the lake and with a mild smell of something like sewage, i finally finished reading gödel escher bach. it definately had one of the most satisfying endings i've read. it's up there with animal man, which has a startling similar last chapter/issue. my head began exploding with grant morrison style possibilities. the implanting of characters into peoples minds as both sub-personalities (one person) and meta-personalities (many persons). everything everyone says starts to make sense when you start mapping all their concepts together. hofstadter, morrison, moore, it's all the fucking same - ant hills, the dc universe, idea space.
but ignore that last paragraph.
i'm just about to release my first bookcrossing book, rather imaginatively on the ferry to oslo where emil found his book. i was a bit disappointed after it was me who killed its exciting trail. especially since it would have given us clues as to what fucker broke into, squatted and trashed our last house before the landlord had a chance to see what great condition we'd left it in (cough). dan brown would have actually come in handy in solving our own annoying mystery. how fanciful. but then, who would bother reading dan brown if you were out busy squatting and such things?
the best thing we did yesterday was get pizza and eat it down by the canals (again). then me and julie rented a boat and rowed up and down christianshavn. i could so easily get used to it. i love water so much. and even if the tourist boats and luxury yachts are a pain in the ass, i don't care. although i swear the guy on the norwegian boat heard me shout "good to see you've spent your money well". how can they sleep at night? shame the guy in the hummer waiting beside me at the lights didn't hear my "nice car, shame about our environment". they're the most anti-social vehicle going, have you seen the space between the driver and passenge seat? if only i had seen greenpeace's new gas guzzler advert at the time i could have written "wanker" on the back of his car. time to break out the 'danger global warming' tape again.
then down comes the rain again, teasing my sleepless state. calling it rain doesn't really do it justice. it's a brutal mass of water. i still love it. but then i'm not julie, who's currently out doing her janitorial duties and probably getting soaked.
01.08.06: the summer morning, bright but cold because it's still early, it makes me feel like i'm on holiday. weary and in an unfamiliar place, somewhere that's only temporary. this isn't a real feeling, it's just a memory. but it does seem rather fitting.
lost due to lack of sleep, is about right.
so, these are our last days in copenhagen. i feel like i should be spending them better. it's two weeks before we leave on our rock'n'roll trip across europe and the atlantic, and six days before my birthday. "halfway to fifty" has a nice ring to it, but lets not hear that phrase again.
you start thinking you haven't been taking full advantage. all those places you're going to miss, why weren't you there more? but, what can you do? you can get some sleep and realise you're starting to talk shit.
something is bothering me though, but i can't put my finger on what it is. probably it's that i have no idea what i'm doing. come september my world could look like anything. i'm clueless. it's a void. from your point of view i'm living my dreams, doing exactly and whatever i want. living that shit. really i'm just forcibly throwing myself from comfortable situations into uncertainty. as if that isn't the same thing?
so excuse my self-indulgent crap, but lack of sleep is no one's friend.
what i'm worried about really is when i'm next going to be able to swim in the sea. all i want to do is hurl myself from a pier, spinning out of control into the murky depths. fuck the jellyfish.
31.07.06: when children are young we encourage them to be creative and express themselves. we give them crayons, pens and chalk and tell them to go wild. we give them the pavement and they create wonderful patterns and images:
time passes and they grow up and all of a sudden they're being told they can't do this anymore. no wonder they're all so fucked up and confused. those ones that end up so irreversably messed up are probably the same ones who create such stupid concepts as the bbdo poster campaign against graffiti. good one, you fucking 'tards. the posters have caused a flood of adbusts, my favourite being these ones which nicely illustrate bbdo's key flaw - adverts are as equal an ugly intrusion into public space as any graffiti, even shit tags. the only difference is their premise. the purpose of an advert is basically control and manipulation (not to like, beat around the bush), where as graffiti enriches space with art and culture. at its least it's reclaiming. whether you agree with that or not, couldn't the money they wasted on such an ineffectual campaign have been put to better use, some kind of community project that would have benefited everyone?
but anyway, the kids chalk scrawlings inspired me. the moment everyone had retreated to their apartments i went sick to work:
but the sky lit up and cracked and then the rain came. everything was washed away and my plan to subconsciously root these destructive concepts in the minds of the children was foiled utterly. until next time.
that was after i'd had my chance to neck the bottle of absinthe and go 'swimming' in the paddling pool they'd erected earlier in the day. surprisingly deep for a paddling pool. we pulled the tarpaulin back and jumped in, joined by our recently befriended neighbour (why must me only make friends with people just before we leave) who had already asked me if i'd seen the film pi (which i've decided should be called phi, but that's for another day) and challenged me to a game of chess. we weren't in there long but it was awesome spontaneous fun none the less. except of course it wasn't spontaneous, i'd been planning it all day.
30.07.06: what was going on last night? i'd just got to bed when a barrage of fireworks went off somewhere nearby. hanging my head out the window i could see their reflections in the windows at the end of the street. last night i missed all the fireworks? for over an hour after there were cheers and whoops echoing along our street. whatever it was i'm sure it wasn't worth getting out of bed for. whatever it was i'll never know or be able to witness again, so of course it was worse getting out of bed for.
yesterday i went out in the sunshine to take some photographs i've been meaning to take for a while (in some cases months). so here's some more local graffiti, pretty much all of it within five minutes of my house:
copenhagen isn't the tapestry of graffiti that it should be, but if you look hard (especially in the areas around christiania and ungdomshuset) there's plenty of impressive and inventive art on display.
doesn't my homepage look particularly beautiful today? don't the birds make you feel free?
anyway, we all have better things to do than this.
29.07.06: you may have noticed me moaning about the recent google image update yesterday. well i'm about to elaborate on it a little, so skip the next few paragraphs if you aren't interested in the fascinating world of search engines.
so in a post on webmasterworld matt cutts said that there's been an "images update". that much was obvious, but did he mean an index update or an algorithm update? i suspect the cheeky blighter kept it ambiguous on purpose. a lot of people have lost images in the index (presumably a lot of people have gained them aswell, google aren't the type to cut down on their data), which has created some new and rather annoying results. for instance, check out the results page for graffiti4 tuesday (yes it's a rather forced example but it still illustrates my point). the image that ranks is hosted on my server and linked to from my within my site (in several places). unfortunately it's also 'hotlinked' from someone else's site and when you click on it you're taken to their site instead of mine. i picked grilly because he's cool, but these other fuckers who hotlink, not only are they stealing your images and bandwidth, they're now stealing your traffic as well. i have quite a few images indexed in this way and i think it's a real flaw.
it does suggest an algorithm update (i.e. preferring images on pages rather than linked to via text or thumbs) but it may also be due to the indexing of less images per site. since those images haven't been spidered on my site they've been attributed to someone elses page instead. as if you didn't hate myspace enough already, this is a really poor show.
anyway, back in the real world (let's not forget it exists) i'm eating my cornflakes dry. that's how hard i've become in my months away from british culture. hear me roar, etc.
last night we went for dinner at mette's place (real name 'meta'). the food (and cake) was super awesome and would have totally shown up our efforts from when she'd come here had we done anything other than barbecue (which trumps all by default). stuffed vegetables - simple but always impressive. we listened to music that reminded me of tanya donelly's last album and played the danish version of cranium but with improvised rules that enable you to play with only three people (including one who doesn't understand all those complicated danish words). unfortunately we'd left our bike lights at home so had to walk home, got back too late, and then couldn't be bothered to go dumpster diving.
now i eat my pizza outside in the courtyard while watching a small gang of children try to demolish a sheet of cardboard with their coloured plastic spades. it's futile yet they carry on relentlessly for over five minutes before calling a retreat and scrambling up into the kids play house. i think me and grilly made better use of it (something we both omitted from our accounts of his visit), sheltering from the summer downpour while drinking bourbon on the rocks. it may seem childish but it's a fine thing to reclaim, running through the rain and getting soaked. you big fucking kids.
it's called sand sand sand and it made me confused when doing the washing because the water didn't quite react how i expected it to.
28.07.06: we have this brilliant roll of toilet paper at the moment which has no perforations. just think of all the wasted energy that goes into making the thousands of perforations on millions of toilet rolls when they're completely pointless (unless you only have one spare hand i suppose). now all i need now is to get rid of those stupid dimples and we're in business.
bip's been throwing some good links my way. like the electronic intifada and an article titled lebanon in a wider war. i also liked this bbc article. by me giving you these links it saves you the displeasure of me ranting on about it. although (and this might just be me being ignorant) doesn't it look like america is using the crisis to build up a better case for invading iran? honestly, these stupid fucking people. it really is enough to make you get up and join a terrorist group.
anyway, i have some old photos floating around from our trip to dyrehavn ages ago. this will calm you down, look at the nice passive deers and my lovely girlfriend:
they're all a bit green, but nevermind.
in other news there's just been a google image update and i faired quite badly. it's particularly annoying because for the first time i made an effort with my image optimisation (experimenting somewhat, my previously ranking images were irrelevant to the searches they appeared in) and it had completely the opposite effect - zero visibility. or did it? since google updates their image index so infrequently there's probably a huge lag between google spidering images and you seeing the results. perhaps google didn't even see the optimisation that i did and i was wrong to change it, thinking i'd been way off base.
not that the traffic is worth much to me. it just dents my ego a little when i lose it, you know how it is. i really appreciate my visitors and it hurts me to see them go. whimper.
26.07.06: so where are we at? i'm guessing too many days in the future, where all significant points have melted into something meaningless and indisguishable and the order of things has turned all fuzzy. my problem is memory is too malleable and i hate to forget experience, so it's like they never happened. this is to be discussed elsewhen.
the dream i had two nights ago didn't help. actually it was two mornings ago, i know this because morning dreams are the worst. we were running down the streets of this vibrant and inticing city. i don't know who 'we' were, but it was like we were childen again. every street corner was drenched in intimacy, wonder and excitement. how things can be so perfect in dreams. but there was an overriding sadness. we'd only just begun to explore, barely even put our roots into the ground, and we soon had to leave. i woke up feeling awful. it's been a while since a dream has managed to trick me into being unhappy about something i can't wait to embrace. it took half the day to shake the feeling.
the last few days have been brilliant though. it's hard to know where to start. it's hard to know what stories have significance, or what stories are even stories.
for instance, picture me standing outside copenhagen airport reveling in the sun and my nutty icecream. i'm staring into the water fountain, lost in the patterns the water makes across the shiny black slabs. i'm daring to run along the water jets between the burst. it could be done. it could. but this story isn't going to go anywhere. so instead we're waiting for grilly, sitting on the floor in arrivals and i'm thinking about the contrast between departures and arrivals.
soon we're beginning the trail of decadence with nachos and dark beer at our local posh cafe, then lugging a crate of beer back to the apartment followed by the braising of tofu and drinking of cheap beer (cheep bear?). conversation involves all the usual topics, my favourite being consensual cannibalism. when julie goes to bed we relocate to a grassy spot down by the lake and get sick on spicy nuts and crisps. we wait for the sun to rise but get bored soon after it's set.
the next day starts slowly and i show grilly around town, popping imaginary caps into random tourists and generally trying to stay out of the way, spending hours in comic book shops and eating a nice scone (these are all important details). too many animal photos to absorb in one viewing and a relaxing beer sitting infront of a church. we finally get to properly meet up with julie at 4pm and stuff ourselves rotten with vegetarian buffet stodge. it was sometime around then that i spotted a palestinian flag and the possibility of a demo. it couldn't have been worse though, infront of the parliment was a large flock of blue and white flags. i already felt sick enough from eating too much, it was all a bit much. i can't even begin to grasp how solidarity with israel works in this situation.
incidently, the hunger strikers are still there. they've got quite an impressive camp set up now as well. there's some fucking solidarity for you.
onwards with the plan, we picked up some more beers and rented a rowing boat, spent the late afternoon unelegantly gliding up and down the christianshavn canals with the tiny fishes and the enormous tourist boats, banging into stupidly expensive boats (yachts?) and getting a bit excited by the 10" jellyfish i spot. it's all very pleasant and we carry it on in christiania, finding a nice grassy spot with an atmosphere fattened up by a rather sexy live dub band - who we don't really watch but i enjoy immensely. at some point it got dark and i can't even remember noticing. we buy more beers and everyone gets annoyed with me for hoarding all the bottles (well they paid for breakfast). we finish the night off with a quick dumpster diving escapade.
saturday was to be spent lounging on the beach and making the most of the sea. digging tunnels and burying julie in the sand. trying to eat icecream before it melts and goes all over you, forcing you to go swimming again. water frisbee never was going to be that great an idea. i was determined to find another jellyfish but it just didn't happen. for dinner we decided to go for pizza, and since our local was closed due to holiday we went in search of the apparently amazing pizza parlour in christianshavn, with a name like gastronoma it must be good. also with a queue of that size. so we took some beers and ate pizza down by the canal, taking care not to feed the birds (unlike the guy on the other side who was mobbed by seagulls). there were three girls messing around on their boat, repeatedly jumping off the roof into the water. pulling silly poses, showing off to the tourists and getting shouted out by boat drivers. being generally photogenic. not punk rock but care free. i blame them for my bad dream. also i feel bad because i accidently saw boobies when they were getting changed.
we wandered home and played some games in our courtyard that involve anarchy, war and pirates (the "isael starts nuclear war and everyone dies" card never came up). darkness came and we lit some candles, drank bourbon instead of rum. then eventually got our butts in gear and caught a bus over to nørrebro for stengade dancing action. we got there too early of course, downstairs wasn't even opened, so we sat upstairs listening to cock rock and the dj didn't have any mcclusky (the classic "i have it at home"). what i wanted was indie but it never really happened. when downstairs opened it was a weird mix of songs that could have been played at my ideal club night, but they'd be the ones i wouldn't dance to. i'd like to pretend they played 'the power' back to back with 'release the pressure' so i could say "who would do that?!", but they didn't. i can't even remember any other songs i enjoyed dancing too. it felt like we left early but that's just danish clubbing times, i have some idea that it was 3am when we got home. although we did walk all the way back.
we started sunday with our best approximation of a vege breakfast and tried not to waste too much time getting out. we cycled over to the botanical gardens to see it properly (last time we went it was raining). they have a bizzare collection of plant, all spikey, twisted or bloated. there is also a rather impressive orchid house, although it's only open for an hour (or something ridiculous). all this green, i just wanted to fall into it and go to sleep. but then i wouldn't have seen that awesome black butterlfy with bright pink and pale blue patches. we moved on to the national art gallery (statens museum for kunst) where we caught a crazy live jazz band. i always wanted to see someone play there and i thought they were amazing, but that might only be because i don't listen to jazz. i love the evil of a double bass. back in the gardens we sat around trying to decide what to do and grilly found a mobile phone hiding under a stone (um, sort of). now there is an adventure to be had. we met the very grateful owner back in town and treated ourselves to smoothies (grilly had a panini'd bagel - awesome).
we were on our bikes so it seemed only right to cycle up to the mermaid for pure tourist indulgence. tourists are fucking annoying though, so we went a bit further out and sat right at the end. surrounded by sea, it lapping up at our feet whenever a boat passed nearby. just brilliant. but we couldn't stay there forever. it was nearing dinner time and we hadn't eaten in christiania yet (unless you count the falafel with awesome chilli sauce). i'd go into details about the food but i've bored you with boring details enough already right?
back at home we did the right thing and watched a couple of films until some stupid time in the morning (i put my foot down at watching memento forwards though). this meant we got up kinda late and "wasted" the first half of the day watching a grant morrison talk about magic, aliens and how we're all a larvae ("it works! go home and do it!"). shame we missed hope6 though. but me? i'm just a tourist anyway.
so julie eventually finished work and we all went swimming in the harbour. it wasn't as busy as before and much better for the lack of people. we didn't swim all that much, but enough to work up an appetite for a stupidly priced but rather amazing hot chocolate. sitting outside the cafe we discussed the possibilities of taking food from an abandoned and almost full plate, only to have the owner return 8and then barely even eat it as he read his paper). it was this that made me slightly hesitant when taking a whole brownie from the table next us, and probably why i left the other brownie and one and half muffins. that some expensive food wasting (probably because they were norwegians, julie said). we got some good stares and (the amateur that i am) got nervous when the waitress came and ate half the brownie myself, when i should have been asking her for the other muffins. i'll get them next time. but it doesn't really matter because we headed over to the ever friendly spicy kitchen for dinner (via the calm riverside of the black diamond) and were all thouroughly stuffed afterwards. painfully.
after this all that was left to do was finish the bourbon and watch fight club. how can you can watch that film and still maintain your worker bee lifestyle? unless you're dom and, having completely missed the point, go home and start your own fight club. that wasn't his problem though, his problem was that he lied about doing it. the demeaning prick.
but wait, it's bed time and that's pretty much it. and it's surprising how much i've managed to write considering i really couldn't be bothered. it has been
five six days though. i apologise profusely.
and now i've burnt my popcorn
19.07.06: we've got some weird sleep patterns going on here, and my days are becoming rather too repetative. this is only because i'm trying to knuckle down and i know how crazy things are going to be become all too soon. all will be saved by the imminent arrival of grilly. tomorrow.
so, this was one of my favourite swimming spots recently:
really i've got nothing to say because there is nothing to say. i've spent the last half hour flicking between bbc news and music television, putting rage against the machine back into their right context.
the miserable image i'm taking to bed is superman vs george bush..
17.07.06: i'm going to have a shot of absinthe and tell you about my weekend. but don't get excited, it doesn't mean it's going to be good. the absinthe is for my benefit, not yours.
first i want to tell you about our internet provider, and luckily for them i don't have a clue what they're called. they're nowhere nowhere near as bad as NTL (who are nothing but scum - you know this already), but they're still driving me to shout repeated "fucks" whilst i'm trying to eat my breakfast (this morning, incase you're worried i'm drinking during breakfast). why does our connection go down at the worst possible moment, at the times when i need it the most? well apparently it's because we have "noise on our line". all i did was tell the nice man our customer number and he said "i can see that there's a problem". oh really? well why couldn't you have seen that before and fixed it without me needing to call? couldn't you have done that weeks ago when we first reported the problem?
meanwhile our neighbours continue to argue with brutal intensity. you worry about domestic violence. or one of them burning down the flat in a spiteful rage. police asking for witness statements. that kind of thing. mostly it just ruins my dinner. it's one of those horrible awkward things that everyone's aware of but no one dares mention. having said that, earlier today our upstairs neighbour vaguely alluded to it, "there aren't any secrets here". what can you do?
anyway, we've played host twice and i think we did a good job. it's great having guests over and a decent excuse to sit out in the courtyard drinking wine and eating cake til midnight. it's so calm out there when all the babies have been put to sleep. i mean, to bed. our guests on saturday bought two children (we didn't tell them we were vegetarian) who were a lot of fun and not at all annoying. that sounded sarcastic but it wasn't supposed to. they loved my camera:
another time you could find us having romantic drinks down by the lake. our own huge stretch of grass, just us and all the thousands of insects also enjoying the late evening. then that guy who stopped nearby for a random piss into the water. and with such conversations as the intricacies of the plot and subsequent paradox that stretches over the terminator films (also how the third installment unapologetically ruins the whole thing)
one night we watched 'american history x', which was brilliant. who would have though edward norton would look so good with a fat swasika tattoo above his breast. who would have thought anyone would? i didn't like the end but not because it was a bad ending - i wanted happy ever after. another night we watched 'alien versus predator', which wasn't even worth mentioning (which is why i wasn't going to, but nevermind).
we go to the beach, we go swimming. we see a bubble car and i get more excited than i thought possible from a bubble car.
the literal high point of our weekend was climbing to the top of the church of our saviour, which is located just across the lakes from us in christianshavn. the copper stairway spirals up and around the spire, the steps becoming narrower and narrower as they approach the top. you're 90m up and it's probably one of the best views you can get of copenhagen. you can see pretty much everything. our timing was terrible though and we were surrounded by americans, it made me really appreciate this graffiti:
other photos may come later, as soon as i stop being annoyed at my lack of email.
pat smear - best last name ever
15.07.06: i've been feeling a little less than balanced recently. i'd like to blame it on the book i'm just over halfway through - american psycho - but i'm not sure the blame will fly. usually i love reading about dismemberment and inexplicably violent yet casual murder. normally i'd laugh when reading about someone killing a dog with a coathanger. normally, y'know. i would. but there's a sick repetitive mantra running through the book that makes me feel quite queasy. there's something about bret's choice of words that makes me feel a tad unsettled. they make me think such things as "my tan is fading already". or how certain cups are too grotesque to drink from. i've started washing my hands obsessively and poisoning julie's plants. and i'm thinking how someone should really do something about that baby upstairs that never stops crying.
and i have to finish the book, because if i don't then it'll never be resolved. exorcised.
probably it has nothing to do with the book.
probably it's more to do with my diet of only cheese and onion toasties. or the pint of coffee i've taken to drinking while working. the coffee seperates work from play. or maybe that's the problem, that i need something to make the distinction.
anyway. we're having guests over now, family, and we've cooking a wonderful lunch for them including brocolli quiche, mushroom frittata and other dishes all seemingly involving egg. we have homemade lemonade and potato salad. all i have left to do is go the toilet and smear thick lumps of shit around the rim.
now do you see what this book is doing to me?
up next, why companies shouldn't judge potential employee's professional abilities and working personality based on their personal website persona, and how it affects you.
13.07.06: your man daryl recently waxed lyrical (as is his style) about the shifting trends in internet usage - from google to myspace, from search to share, from marketing to socialising.
if you want to read about the internet moving towards social networks, then i could think of much worse places to start.
(by the way, that's me trying to create a blog fugue [i belief perhaps it's grilly's turn next?])
so myspace's popularity has overtaken google's in the US. who's laughing at rupert murdoch for buying it now? me, the whole thing is ridiculous.
the internet is a social network, we don't need myspace or xanga to consolidate the whole concept. once-upon-a-time the internet was distributed, shared and neutral. now it's becoming monopolised, rigid and contrived. myspace is nothing but a bloated and redundant metainternet at best. at worst it's a diseased and rapidly growing cancer.
i despise myspace and everything that goes with it, especially the never ending barrage of hotlinking which they happily ignore. it doesn't really demonstrate anything, but xanga never replied to this suitably polite email i sent to them last year:
I am emailing you to request that you do something about your policy on users linking to external images. Your current stance on 'hotlinking' creates problems for many people - people who run their own sites and pay for their own bandwidth. Every day I have more of your users linking to my site's images and I'm having to constantly pay extra money for it. You clearly say on your site "If the site isn't yours, be sure to ask permission first!", but not one single person ever has - why would they bother?
You also say "Some websites just hate Xanga, and remote-block images just from visitors at Xanga". Some websites are forced to block Xanga, I would also be blocking your site if I had enough control over the server that hosts my site. But it is nothing about hate, and I think that it is irresponsible of you to use such language - suggesting that webmasters are blocking your users for no reason.
I understand that hotlinking is hard to police (some people have their own webspace or authorisation), but it is theft and you have a responsibility to combat it.
One suggestion is to introduce a 'report and remove/ban' policy that would work as follows. If one of your users is hotlinking to images on someones site then they can submit a complaint against the user. The user gets a warning message and told to remove their unauthorized link. If they fail to do this then the link could be automatically removed by your system. If this repeatedly happens the user could be banned or stopped from using external images. Hopefully this would work simply as a deterent.
Please note that I have completely ignored the issues of Copyright, which is also a problem with your current system - it just happens that I do not personally care about it.
I appreciate that you probably don't care two shits about this.
Yours sincerely enough
i also hate the myspacer trend of embedding videos and music in pages. except it's not a 'trend', it's almost obligatory.
i don't want some random emo crap to suddenly start playing while i'm browsing,
and i really don't want a video at the same time. i don't care what music you like and i definately
don't want to listen to it. it kills my internet speed and the computer i use.
i suppose that's my fault for using a slow pc?
some lessons in usability wouldn't go amiss either. neon fonts are hard to read, so are
crossed out fonts.
a large and complicated background image is more annoying than you can possibly imagine. add it up and it's
far from sociable.
actually i lied. i'm not laughing, i'm crying.
12.07.06: so i was having a nose around and discovered my site listed in what appeared to be a rather mysterious file on the microsoft site. all of a sudden i felt like a paedophile. but no, it turns out it's part of their strider url tracer research project and is a (non-complete) list of websites using statcounter's tracking system.
i've been "automatically and systematically exposed". i feel outed and dirty. way to make me the criminal here. now i'm accused of all kinds of privacy violations and it was you who came to my site. i never invited you (actually i might have).
what's the big deal? well, when you browse the internet you give off all kinds of strange smells. this is necessary or else you'd never be able to browse and recieve files at all. all i'm doing is sniffing what you sent me. your 'name and number' has been collated in a way which enables me to perve over such delicious details as your IP, hostname and path through my site. i even know how you found my site. aren't your palms get sweaty just at the thought of it?
you may feel uncomfortable that i can see every page or photo that you looked at, but really i know relatively little about you. this data is rarely looked at individually, it's generally looked at collectively, so it's all very impersonal. also, any webmaster can do this because every server keeps a log of file requests. this log can be data mined for exactly the same things (although the data is less accurate than a tag based system for reasons i don't need to go into). no one seems to care about log files though, is it because it goes on behind the scenes and you never really think about it? or am i missing a trick here?
well anyway, the problem strider has with my site is that it's a third party (statcounter) who is taking your details. did you eat the complimentary cookie when you arrived? they now have the same data about you that i have, and more if they keep it. if they're really clever they may even be able to watch you travelling across all sites that use their tracking system. is that worrying?
so what about your ISP? everything you do on the internet goes through them - your page requests, file transfers, emails, chats, voip conversations. are they storing all of that information? are they selling it to a third party such as hitwise? are they giving your government access to that data? because it isn't me who's going to bust down your door and shoot you seven times in the head (once in shoulder). all i'm doing is laughing at you because you used google to find "60 things that look like vaginas" or "monologues for two people".
i have no answers, at least not until i've finished my breakfast.
but there are downsides to having tracking on your website though. for instance, you get to see when no one visits your site. or when people only spent 5 seconds looking at something you were really proud of that took you hours to make. or when a prospective employer spends half an hour browsing your site and you start to get a little paranoid.
you see how this works both ways?
11.07.06: where are all the flies coming from? am i dying or something? does my flesh smell of death?
sorry, i'd start again but the delete key is playing up.
so just over in christianshavn there's a cute little cafe/restaurant that we've wanted to visit pretty much since we arrived in copenhagen. the thing is - every time we've walked past it there's never even standing room. through the steamed up windows everyone always looks real happy though, like some unattainable class we could never be apart of. so it remained on the list of things we should eventually do some day (along with climbing up the impressive spire of the church of our saviour and renting a boat to paddle around the canals in). well i was in a good mood yesterday and not a little hyper, so i dragged julie out for dinner (doubley celebrating her grade in economics, which was an 8 that will mean nothing to you - a 6 is a pass, people rarely get 13 and there is no 12). how dumb are we though, it's called the spice kitchen and i never realised it was an indian. they serve less typical 'indian restaurant food' than the other indian near us, but it's definately better food. more in the vein of planet india (and as equally reasonably priced).
(some sleazy dub floats from the stereo and a gentle breeze from outside, as if planet india is calling me from an entirely different time zone)
anyway, the reason i mention it (apart from it being a suitable vehicle for pointing out i was in a good mood and julie got her good grade) is the couple who came in and sat beside us just as we were finishing up. i noticed they were ordering from the vegetarian menu, and then that they ordered the same mains as us, followed by an identical single chapati. i asked julie if they were copying us, just as they also ordered the same sweet mango chutney we had. perfect comedy timing in the real world isn't something that works when translated onto paper, so you'll have to forgive me for recounting something i found quite amusing (mildly disturbing) in a rather unamusing way.
(then fanny packer, although by the time i actually got around to typing this kim gordon is already making me feel sleepy with her husky voice)
as a random topic change, i havn't done any active link building on my site for a long time now. it seems a pointless exercise when there's a real world out there that actually responds nicely when you engage it. i'd write a request for any regular readers who have their own websites to offer their gratitude for my services in the form of link, but i'm hopefully not that desperate or shameful. i'd link to my amazon wishlist before i did that. actually, it'd probably be the other way round and in very quick succesion. but then what was it that i did not two sentences ago?
anyway, the reason i should make an effort is because i lost a few links a while ago, not that it had any noticeable impact on my site (and not just cos i was banned at the time, insert your own ugly fucking winking smiley face). losing the one from the spannerworks site (relating to kilimanjaro) was a bit gutting. but then my site was banned so removing my link was perfectly reasonable. if only i'd coded my kilimanjaro photos on that site as hotlinks to mine, but that wouldn't have been at all cool. i lost a few other links because i made a mistake on my links page. a few people, who were apparently only linking to me because i linked to them, dropped my link from their site. that's what counts for friendship on the internet. but i'm determined not to get sucked in by such (i want to call it pettiness but that's not what it is at all) things, so i corrected my mistake and put their links back up (minus a couple because i was offended at their reactionary behaviour, their site had died, or i just simply didn't like them). sigh, the plague of reciprocal linking plagues us still.
(then the dead brothers and it reminds me of the good times. but my memory's rudely interrupted and ruined by ibarber, "what is this shit?" as he he skips it and puts on mr blue sky for the third time that day and jumps dj sammy to the top of the playlist - laughing like we all find it funny too)
actually, i noticed one of my old clients finally achieved their desired rankings through 'inspired' use of a reciprocal links page featuring completely random and unrelated sites. i honestly didn't know whether to laugh or cry.
and who buys mugs with dope leaves and smiley faces on anyway? who would possibly want to drink tea from such a grotesque cup? sigh
09.07.06: in our courtyard on a sunday, at around 5:30pm, you get the most amazing smells as everyone starts to cook dinner. it's summer so the air is heavy and everyones kitchen windows are opened wide. wafting down is the smell of a thick thai curry, onions frying in butter, tasty garlic and tomato sauce. then smoked sausages, roasted potatoes, pastry - perhaps from a pie. after that my dinner was going to be nothing but a disappointment, despite how hungry and inspired i was.
and then the rain came. not the big fat drops it should have been, but crap unsatisfying rain. it dulled the heat and eased the pressure, so for that i'm grateful. really, if i wanted to get wet i could have just joined in the kids' waterfight.
anyway, is reading the first part of gödel escher bach in two days a bit overkill? i'm paranoid that if i stop i'll lose the clarity that i've managed to cling on to this far. heed this as a warning though, i too may start writing self-referential meta-acrostics (that isn't a hint, so don't waste your time looking).
oh, and i was looking at the thumbs of my photos from the glyptotek and thought they looked boring (good advertising), so i'm only putting four here:
the rest are hanging around at the end of that link.
and i suppose it's my fault that i rank for "getting fucked by a horse and then dying". well, it is now.
08.07.06: doing nothing but lounging. just watching the planes come in to land and the ferries go out to sea. drinking homemade lemonade, stretching out on the grass. putting your bike in top gear. and everywhere you go, the smell of barbecue. when you were young summers like this lasted forever. why can't they now?
so if you were wondering why i've been quiet it's because i was waiting for an important phone call (that never came, but that's okay) and couldn't really concentrate on anything else. the whole thing ended with me freaking out when a rather large piece of seaweed wrapped itself around me. the reflecting sunlight made it look like a fucking man-o-war. giant squid, or something. you may not see the relationship between these things but they will forever be linked in my head. and i hate irrational fear. jumping at spiders is okay because it's instinct, but then not being able to go into the same room as it is just annoying. so i'll go swimming in deep and open water, but sometimes it take a whole lot of concentration to just not get the fear. it's not sharks, that's verging on irrational. it's anything that wraps itself around you that you can't see. it's being vulnerable and blind in a foreign ecosystem, no matter that your the largest and meanest predator.
i'm not a predator, i'm a pissing vegetarian. but nevermind.
my big break through today happened as i took my first bite of the licorice ice lolly i'd previously lacked the bravery to try (or stubbornness to buy). it takes the danish with their love of salt licorice to come up with something like that. you think it sounds disgusting right? well, you would.
actually, the biggest news is that i finally finished william vollmann's 'rising up and rising down' (the abridged version). it was nothing short of amazing. now i have an almost painful desire for the full seven volume encyclopedia. i never though i'd ever finish the abridged version, but now my life wont be complete if i die without reading the whole thing. it's the last two sections that have been culled the most (the studies in consequence and the photographic portfolios), and it's these that were the most compelling. i knew i should have paid out for it when i had the chance.
then watching little white bugs fall and rise from the grass. it's a beautiful picture until you realise they're aphids and you hate aphids. some kid got a new toy and now that stupid air rocket with it's "pfhut" sound is being launched into the air over and over. they were doing it when i went to bed last night and their still doing it while i'm eating my breakfast this morning.
i have too many other things to do.
05.07.06: okay so i lied, but only technically. i think in any reasonable argument you could equate swimming in the harbour with swimming at the beach. it doesn't matter since the chances are you have no idea what islandbrygge is like, so only i can pass judgement on this. but i'll go and fuck that up by telling you anyway. and confuse myself in the process as well, because i've no idea when the sea becomes a river and not the sea. but, anyway. between where i live and the centre of copenhagen is something i suppose you'd call a river, you can cross it over the knippelsbro bridge (which i mention because the name holds endless entertainment for me) or the langebro bridge. beside the latter they've build a kind of swimming platform that allows for safe outdoor swimming in a place where you'd otherwise get cut to pieces by boats and imaginary sharks. and as you might predict, when the weather's nice enough for swimming it's packed, but then most people seem happy enough to stand around beside the water and not actually go swimming. go figure. it's not the beach, but then the beach doesn't have a five metre diving board (although, annoyingly enough it kind of does) and you wouldn't want to swim out far enough to have eight metres of water below you. swimming in water that deep is too sexy. like this it may as well be bottomless.
i'd forgotten how amazing it was to jump from height into water. on a bad day i'd be an asshole and liken it to the experience of being born. if it was really bad then i'd just quote straight from ghost in the shell. but it happens to be a nice day, the smell of coffee is wafting down from an apartment infront of me and there's cherry stalks littering the floor. not one of them has a knot tied in it.
also i've been trying to make friends with some of our neighbours. i had a suspicion they were quite cool and then the other day we sparked up a conversation about pwei, what better way to break the ice? but then they started throwing cups and the like out of their apartment window at us and talking about us in their kitchen, about how we'd been down the beach and now we were sitting outside drinking tea. anyway, one of them just waved at me from the window which is quite cool. although it completely fucks up my continuity because the next paragraph was written earlier while i was inside. it just doesn't make any sense but i'm sure you can forgive me.
i'm watching some random music tv channel that is supposed to "100% rock" but the best thing they've played so far is avril lavigne, that's excluding the little advert that tells you it's "100% rock" between every shit song, which i'm already starting to look forward to again. rock!!if you're worrying about my authenticity, i'm not really watching tv at all. i'm clearly writing on my website, duh.
but did you know emoware is a fully interactive experience? it's a compliant lifestyle choice built around you. dip your toe in, the water's lovely. there's nothing but friendly greetings and tender embraces waiting for you.
04.07.06: if you're looking for me then i'll be on the beach. and i'll be down there every day this week, just you try and stop me. those beautifully clear calm waters of the amager strand beg for zero half measures. you can even get vegeburgers down there, from this arabian tent get-up which has the most comfortable cushions to lie on. there's a place you could lie for hours just staring up into the endless blue sky.
ages ago, while on one of my random and painfully long walks, i came across a tree that had thousands of dummies hanging from its branches by lengths of string. i've no idea what it was in aid of, or supposed to mean, but it looked pretty. from a distance at least, up close the rubber was rotting and the little trinkets in plastic bags looked warped and alien.
pacifiers from around the world? i think my favourite were the japanese!
by the way, if you use amazon you might have been tricked into buying something from amazon_jersey. it pissed me off anyway, because that item then doesn't count towards your free postage and when i tried to cancel the order you can't. well, not via the normal way. so i emailed them and they said they'd refunded my account, but then i recieved another email almost straight afterwards saying the item had been dispatched and including all kinds of crap about returning items and refunds. i ignored because it's not like i didn't want the item, i was just being awkward. the funny thing is though, they refunded my account and send me my order. it's been nearly two months since then and i haven't been recharged.
oh, and happy independance day. good to see you looking so independant. what's next? happy autonomous day?
03.07.06: yesterday i finished the epic ya basta! ten years of zapatista uprising, so i'm now fully primed and loaded for any debate (or argument) relating to the zapatistas. it was good timing too, because yesterday was the mexican presidential election. although today there's still no clear victory, even with mexicans around the world being able to vote. you would have thought that since the running was summed up as "free market policies" (PAN) verses "for the good of all, the poor first" (PRD) it wouldn't have been a competition at all. but judging the candidates on a single statement alone kind of misses the point, especially when what you really want is democracy, liberty and justice (something the mexican state-party system doesn't seem to be able to offer). if you're interested, there's a few zapatista communiques from marcos here ("august 2005 - letter to don fermín hernández" is a good one) that explain why the zapatistas don't back the PRD.
as for the book, i fully recommend it. it's an entertaining and inspiring read. it may be large but it's necessarily large, removing any of the communiques would make it incomplete and that'd only take away from its uber sexyness. it's not such a hard read either as it's been broken down into good chunks and marcos writing style is quite infectious. infact the only difficulty i had with it is that there are events which are discussed but not fully explained or detailed (e.g. the acteal massacre). a few editorial comments and explanations would have been a great addition, along with the public letters that marcos often addresses (easy to find on the internet but they're rarely in english). now i'm just waiting for the translation of "EZLN: 20 and 10, fire and word". what's taking so long?
so i've got a bunch of photos lying around, here's a random one and a change of format:
that building's perspective makes me sick.
i saw the video for sepultra's 'convicted in life' last night. it got my pretty excited, all those animals getting cut up and tortured in abatoirs. there should be more videos featuring shit like that. perhaps it's time for the second birth (if being stillborn counts as a birth) of the clandestine vegetarian guerilla army.
and how dare the lostprophets have an album called 'liberation transmission'?
anyway, it's a lovely day and i should be embracing it rather than writing rubbish about mexico, something i clearly know piss all about.
01.07.06: i should have ended my last post on a cliffhanger. where was it they were going to eat dinner? how would they end this awesome day? what could they do to top it?
well we ate at the new copenhagen wagamamas, which at first doesn't appear all that exciting. of course it's identical to every other wagamamas the world over, from the layout of the condiments to the way they scrawl your order over your placemat. as far as i could tell the only difference in the menu was you could order tuborg here. i mean, you may as well be in london. almost. the benefit of this wagamamas is its two entrances, and hence exits. there's the usual entrance for us normal folk and another at the other end of the restaurant for people at tivoli. they wouldn't want to miss out on those customers now would they? and if you don't know what tivoli is, then it's an amusement park that's right in the middle of the city. during our dessert we joked about leaving through the other door and visiting tivoli, skipping the combined entrance fee of 150kr (which is insane considering you still have to pay for the rides). but what did we have to lose? i readied my "oh sorry, i'm english and stupid and didn't realise we weren't allowed out this way" rountine and we walked straight out into theme park heaven. well, that's kind of what it felt like, y'know? our timing was perfect, i don't think it's something you could easily get away with at any other time than just before closing.
this was my first time inside the walls of tivoli gardens, and under what better conditions than free? ooh, and under the cover of darkness. because no matter how tacky it might actually be it sure looks beautiful at night. every single one of those tiny and bright colouful lights reflect off a hundred different surfaces. fair ground rides in ray gun gothic and steam engine chic poking out between the trees and each other. pagodas and pirate ships. delicately illuminated lakes and fountains. and some of those rides look genuinely terrifying. and the dragon just looks extremely horrible. there was also a concert going on, which might have been exciting if the band weren't quite so dull. it did have the benefit of keeping a large number of people out of our way, always a good thing, until they finished and the tivoli streets were too packed to be particulary enjoyable. it's about then that we left.
anyway, that was yesterday. this morning we decided we weren't done with cycling trips and went up north along the coast (such a joy in this weather) to dyrehaven. it's a rather large (10sqkm) managed forest and deer park near bakken (the other theme park, can you guess what we do later?) and bellevue beach. we we're hoping to see deer, but since they have over 2000 of them we almost became bored of them in the end. i don't think i've ever seen so many deer, and i've definately never seen albino deer before. they were tricky buggers to photograph though, but that's probably wild animals in general right? i felt bad bothering them until they were all over the path infront of us. we snuck up slowly, only to have an army of joggers march noisily past, pushing the deers back into the trees. sigh. we lunched on top of a mound in the middle of a huge open field and next to a watering hole (for the buffalo).
so when we were bored of the woods (stupid sleater kinney) we went to visit the bakken amusement park. i'm not quite sure what we're doing visiting them both in the space of 24 hours but it's not like we had to pay for it. it's not as exciting and shiny as tivoli but it does have its charms. you should have seen how much mayo she put on my pomme fritz. and my icecream complete with a fløderbolle (no r, cos it's not plural) was disgusting, but so awesome i just had to have one. then someone had scrawled "fuck bush" on the toilet wall. as for the rides, some of them look a bit crazy but nothing as insane as what tivoli has to offer. although there is a 5d cinema, potentially the most absurd claim i've heard all year. we didn't go in because it would have only made me angry ("five dimensions?! you don't know what the fuck you're going on about!!"). we went on one ride that looked reasonably tame (even though it takes you updside down in a big loop) but it still made me regret eating all that cream and mayonnaise. more than i did already.
we had a little trouble finding our bikes (amusement parks disorientate you like that) but then headed down to the beach. a bit further north of bellevue we found a quiet spot away from the danish 'tourists' that was perfect, and this time the water too. a few groups of locals joined us and left again while we were still swimming. they didn't seem to mind us swimming in out undies. i could have stayed there forever, not wanting to get out. i much prefered laying on the sea bed with the dead crabs and jellyfish. it was just too beautiful out there. and lying naked on the jetty, trying to dry in the sun, i was feeling quite liberated. you know, we can live like this every single day if we want. you only have to take the plunge. why don't you come join me?
so 66 people die in iraq and there's fucking insanity in the gaza strip, yet it's the football that makes your top headline. pricks, the lot of you.
(obviously that was directed at the people whose fault that is, not everyone who likes football. that would just be ridiculous. it's not like you can help it if your country's foreign policy encourages the fucking the world up for everyone else. right?)
30.06.06: it's one of those perfect days. you know the ones, where you go off on unexpected bike rides, discover interesting places and new flavours of ice cream you never knew existed. the sun, corn fields and endless roads. eating pizza in a village square, it could be spanish or italian but really it's danish. then reading and drinking in a hip bookshop cafe, listening to 20s swing music and prince. afterwards whizzing down the city side streets, bathed in the afternoon sun, happy you just wasted your last 30kr on the best coffee in town.
the longer version..
in pursuit of 'work clothes' we cycled down to the south amager industrial/commericial zone (from one end of the courtyard comes a bellowing "yeah" but from mine emerges a rather angry"nej", football crapping on my serene again). it's a disturbed suburb of warehouses and distribution centers populated soley by trucks and strange alien looking birds that pick at the grass that's poking up between the huge concrete slabs. it reminded me of that chapter in generation-x where they visit the abandoned radioactive town. open, flat and in the middle of nowhere, the sun's beating down and there's no shade. but me with my bike, i'm super fucking cool. the person who invented the bicycle should be awarded the "best contribution to increasing the joy of the human race" award.
we race through tunnels, watch the planes taking off and find our way to dragør (don't ask me to pronounce it). i'll steal julie's word and describe it as an idyllic harbor village, with tiny thatched orange houses all tightly packed together, beautiful cobbled alleys and bright roses coming at you from all directions. if they had a fire they'd be fucked. we ate pizza and i felt perfectly content. i didn't even get angry when they charged us 40kr for water.
we cycled home and still i wasn't getting bored of it, us and the sky and the fields. although my ass definately wasn't enjoying it, so i treated myself to icecream. kiwi and cookie icecream (er, not mixed). after that i could have fallen into the trap of staying at home and working (or something equally dull), so i followed julie into town and wasted another hour and half thouroughly enjoying myself. and i'm going to do it again in an hour, in a restuarant, because we haven't been decadent enough today (or this week).
i'm surprised i've managed the exertion (oh barely "exertion"). yesterday was the end of school term (at my language school) so we had a three hour canteen picnic involving many beers and wines and many loud skols. it was a little sad for me because it was my last 'lesson' ever, by the time school starts again i'll already by leaving copenhagen. i've been really enjoying my two lessons a week and i'm going to miss them. they kept me on the straight and narrow (that's a joke, btw). so it was my first set of goodbyes and it felt quite premature, i guess because it is, we're still hear for a month and a half. i'll just not be hanging around with as many diverse and friendly characters. they were an interesting bunch. and who was it who put the half-eaten flødeboller in my bag? i mean, honestly.
after the party there was talk of people potentially going to the free salsa night at mambo. since i was already drunk (and just bought another pack of ten and a donald duck book of collected pirate stories, which really i should have stolen) i decided we should go. it was awesome. and good to dance again, even if it was a little unconvential for me. we weren't in the salsa room so it wasn't too bad. i really can't salsa, or have the desire to. but i didn't at all feel out of place. shame we didn't get to dance to shakira though. damnit.
anyway, the result of all this was me being far too drunk. we ate a whole giant bag of crisps when we got home and half watched some awful programme about women competeing to marry some guy. i'm sure i ranted through the whole thing. then had really fucked up dreams and felt less than hot this morning. lucky for me we have a lifetime supply of free bananas. you would too if you had the balls
and i've swore three times since writing this, and i promised i was trying not to swear anymore. i also dissed football which isn't doing myself any favours. bah, fuck 'em. football's turned into a terrible beast and you know it. the money involved in it is sickening and no matter how much you love football you can't deny it would be better off without the evil hand of capitalism rammed firmly between its butt cheeks. football may make millions of people happy, but it does fuck all for the millions of people who simply want (no, need) food, medicine and shelter.
come on, take your best fucking shot.
29.06.06: it's true, we've been binging on museums and galleries. and not because we know we're leaving so have to do things (like doing nothing all your life until your told you have three months to live), but because julie only starts work at 5pm every day.
so yesterday we visited the glyptotek, which has just opened after three years of renovating. as a collection of statues it's quite impressive, but then statues have never really impressed me that much - you've seen one you've seen them all. that's not quite true, and there's at least a few worth seeing at the glypotek, although really it's the building that i like the most. all those walls in dulled shades of red, green and blue (the occasional swastika decoration is also amusing), and the indoor garden-thing complete with palms and fountain. i took photos, so at some point (when i'm finished with all the other crap i have to do) i'll put them up.
then after 5pm (when it's free but on wednesdays only) i went to the danish design centre, somewhere i should have been when i first got here. stupidly for me it's currently only hosting one exhibition, the flow market. it's a sterile and 'no frills' supermarket of products based around "a mindset focused on creating sustainable growth" (to the background music of bjork, nice). it's supposed to be a permanent exhibition but everything on the shelves is for sale. all those cans of "inner calmness", bottles of "addiction liberators" and boxes of "commercial free space", you can buy them. you can also purchase pots of "renewable energy" and "pollution dissolver" (a bargain at 35kr). everyone laughs as they walk in, but about halfway around they go quiet, like they suddenly realised how disturbing this is. a series of barcodes recount chilling facts, such as "each eu-cow gets approx $2 a day in farm subsidies. 1 billion people globally lives for less than $1 a day", "only 0.6% of the approx 5000billion plastic bags, that factories produced around the world in 2002, were recycled", and my own personal favourite "91cents of each dollar spend at traditional food markets goes to the suppliers, processors, middlemen, and marketers; only 9cents of each dollar actually goes to the farmer". let's hear it for urban self-sufficiency. unfortunately the market doesn't include a space for dumpster diving.
anyway, the down arrow and delete key aren't working on this computer, so i can't be bothered to use it anymore.
27.06.06: since when was the start of summer the break up season? since this year perhaps. since you all started realising you were in the wrong place and needed to escape. or since you got shat on by that person. i know too many people to count on my fingers (my other hand is busy typing) that have had their lives forcibly pulled apart in the last month. you don't really know where to look.
but anyway, if it's any consolation, you're all writing amazing blog entries because of it (not to sound like an asshole or anything).
today we finally got to see jeppe hein's invisble maze - and it's pacman day! awesome. i think what i liked most about it is you couldn't help but smile while walking around, your head buzzing every time you hit an invisible wall. it was both an isolated and shared experience. if that bullshit at all makes sense. it was funny watching people walk backwards and forwards at least.
after this we thought we'd make a morning of it and visit the botanical gardens, which is right next door. those humid greenhouses are the best place to be trapped during a serious downpour. if only i'd bought a book i could have sat there for hours surrounded by palms, the rain beating itself hard against the glass. and i'd go on about all the trees they have there and how interesting they are, but that's julie's job and i'd hate to take it from her. plus i wouldn't know what i was going on about. i would have taken a whole bunch of photos but it looked exactly the same as kew gardens, plus i didn't have my camera, duh.
okay. sleater kinney can suck my balls. fucking, suck my balls. for two reasons. firstly for cancelling on me, what was my last chance to ever see them ever (yes, two evers), and secondly because that's a suitably chavanistic thing to say for the occasion of their untimely demise.
well, it was a good run they had anyway. but i suppose i better shut up about them being "the best rock'n'roll band of all time" now. no wait, that still works in the past tense. hurrah. i really wanted one of those fox tshirts (to go with my koala) though, damnit.
26.06.06: talking about things taking up their new shapes, this is the new shape of my forseeable future:
it's all booked, signed and sealed. so an official statement is probably in order. i think you can consider this it. if you were planning on visiting us here in copenhagen you have until the end of july (and it's tight at the top). at the start of august we'll be visiting friends up in norway, followed by the party back in copenhagen. we'll then be travelling down through europe (holland, germany, france, wherever) and finally to england around the 20th, where we'll be for a week and no more. during this time we'll for sure be in brighton for one night only (so book now!). then on the 27th we're on the move again and this time we go west. the furthest west i've ever been isn't very far west at all, so i'm super-psyched about this (it may just be the coffee i'm drinking, thick and fast). we haven't secured residence yet (nor me a job) but we'll be in toronto for at least 16 months. so yes, a long time. consider yourself officially told.
now back to my current kitchen. where the percolator clicks in the time with music. the slinky beat slows and breaks down, giving way to the muted guitar as it chunks its way from the background to the foreground. from outside, through the open window comes the distant cries of children, their voices disguised in french and jibberish. a gentle wah rocks back and forth. it may be dull outside but hits of sunshine fall all around you.
i hope you feel suitably suitable.
25.06.06: a few days have passed but it seems like more. peaceful copenhagen is currently held hostage by an army of students, driving round in their combat trucks, shouting and screaming, blowing their whistles and flashing their rude bits. turning the city upside down. the english just don't know how to celebrate finishing their exams, clearly. on a more personal front, things are starting to take up their new shapes and also it's my nan's birthday today, so a heartfelt happy birthday (this is how you might translate the card i sent). now i have to go back four days and tell you about the lovely protest we had.
i've mentioned ungdomshuset many times before, it's an occupied house and punk magnet that's been threatened ever since the council broke their promise and sold it to a christian organisation (you know the ones, always causing trouble and lying to kids about evolution). they have a court case coming up so have been staging regular demonstations (of varying legality), some of which have been quite 'messy'. the demo on thursday was part of k-town (a punk festival they have every year) so the number of participants was going to be significantly high, along with the possibilities for trouble. apparently last year a group of people tipped a cop car. that's nothing i condone, antagonising the police, at least not before the outcome of the trial. and it's no way to get public opinion on your side. but anyway, i'm digressing. i'm pretty sure they'd organised this one properly and everyone was determined to have a good and safe time.
on the way to gammel torv, skipping the main roads, you could see police vans weaving (or is it sliding?) their way through the backstreets. they're always hiding in these small alleys, disguising their numbers. like when they follow protests using the laughable plain clothes 'civilian police'. that group of five bulky guys in beige with the ear pieces.
it was quite a group that gathered in gammel torv, you could probably call it international (i spoke to a few english and swedes), but i didn't hear any figures for our numbers. as soon as the van arrived and the music started we moved down, along, and then past the council building. after a brief pause and shouting the protest moved on over the lakes and finally stopped at sankt hans torv.
a band set up and played some very angry music, punctuated with shouts like "if the police come in, don't run - fight!. they looked and sounded awesome, although the song about the local policeman who everyone knows and hates might have been a bit much (lyrics roughly translated "you're gonna die tonight").
it went well enough and only two people were arrested, at least one of which was really asking for it (there's a photo somewhere). back at ungdomshuset (just a quick walk and passed the police station that was graffitied on mayday - now behind a wall of police) stalls were set up for the festival and vegan food was being served, which is a shame because i spent my last 100kr on quiet rumours: an anarcha feminist reader and a couple of sexy pamphlets. luckily toby bought low alcohol beer, which i didn't feel at all bad about skanking. then a crazy dog attacked and popped all of the black, purple and green balloons. what do they feed that dog? is that the result of vegan pet food?
anyway, i couldn't stick around for the fun because i wanted to meet julie after work and take her out for dinner. the sun was setting and the rain was coming and town was bathed in the most beautiful light. i took a few photos but the rain made it quiet difficult, plus i thought i was running late.
walking back over knipplesbro you could hear a lone drummer under the bridge, welcoming in the dusk. that was also pretty cool.
so then to yesterday, which was the silver wedding anniversary of one of julie's uncles. it was a very nice affair and i got to dress up a little (not really). everyone was looking very colourful, and then there was me and emil, looking like we were going to a funeral. the food was awesome (i've rarely said that about danish vegetarian food, but when have we been to a posh restuarant?) and the cakes were amazing, all four of them (yes, i ate well), and all homemade.
then we visited steve bloom's outdoor exhibition at nytorv (which also appears to be serving as negotiating table for the rowdy students, one rotating student penis is one too many). his exhibition encourages comparison to bertrand's due to it's sheer scale and ambition. after so long even being impressed becomes passe - oh, it's another amazing photograph of a [insert animal] [eating/flying/jumping/charging]. i bet he burns fuji film. don't visit his website though, you have to register to view large copies of the photos, and that isn't cool.
i know i've written loads but we went for a pre-breakfast morning swim down at amagerstrand (amager beach) and we found a jellyfish. well actually this other guy did, and then bought it over for us to look at. i'd never held one before (i'm presuming you have to hold them the right way around), it had the strangest texture and was the best pink. i wanted to squidge it. that or eat it. it would taste like raspberries. i'm sure. once it was back in the water you could hardly see it.
okay, now enough.
23.06.06: and just incase you were thinking i take myself too seriously:
those were taken by julie, apart from the one that obviously wasn't. and i didn't realise it until just now, but that photo of me from the other day (which i took from above) is one of those painful myspace-style pose shots. now i have to justify it. well firstly, my camera is bigger than yours and it's pretty hard to hold it at a distance, especially when your waist deep in the sea and are really worried about dropping it. secondly, if i hadn't taken it from above then you wouldn't have seen the sea, duh. that still doesn't stop me from looking like a classic myspace twat though. for that i sincerely apologise.
maybe i should be really 'ironic' and do a whole series. you'd rather i shoot myself right? i'd prefer that too.
anyway, back to important shit:
these guys (and woman) are on their fourth day of hunger strike. they've been sitting outside the parliment since they started, all day and night, through sun and rain (and yes it's been raining). they havn't moved and they wont, unless they fall asleep and the police move them on (uh, they're on fucking hunger strike). they're protesting against denmark denying iranian refugees political asylum and sending them home. last week an iranian commited suicide because he was to be sent back to iran. there's a protest at 3pm but i can't attend it. i guess this is my way of giving my support.
we also had an ungdomshuset demo yesterday, but that can wait for another time.
21.06.06: the weather's waning today but i think it's a good thing. just for one day, to release the pressure a little. you could crack your skull on the air, so best not walk too quickly.
there's a whole bunch of political stuff going on but i'm feeling a bit disconected. it's too complicated to me explain, even if i did understand it properly. but either way, there are protests and activism happening and i'm feeling too apathetic or uninvolved to get out there. if you'll excuse my french.
tiredness doesn't help either, and my list of things to get done isn't going down. that's why i don't have anything interesting to say.
although we did visit the islam expo yesterday. there's some awesome photographs and a lot of friendly english descriptions. the most interesting section explained some of the biological knowledge stored in the quran. some of it is a bit suspect - that the word for worker bee is female (don't most languages have similar things? aren't french cats all female?) and quotes like "the pollinating winds" before sciene 'knew' about pollination (which is meaningless without an explanation of the translation, wouldn't the word pollinating only arise after science had discovered that plants reproduce this way? i don't know), but fascinating stuff none the less. far more interesting than christianity. i wonder what that christian fascist moses hansen thinks of it all, i've had an urge to kick his ass ever since that racist bastard blessed me. anyway, it's in front of the parliment building if you want to check it out, which i recommend you do (although statistically you're hundreds of miles away, maybe even thousands).
know every persons truth have just started an interesting collaborative art project which i'm featured in (i was invited to join them, ha). it's fun though, if you're into that kind of thing.
19.06.06: the weekend was spent in køge bugt, about an hour and half's travel south of copenhagen. it's not exactly miles away (although technically and literally it is) but distant enough to feel in the country side. definately far enough to enjoy being out of the city. aske has a summer house out there, complete with barbercue, nearby beach and distant store. it's a bit like being on the isle of wight.
to give you an idea of the kind of time we had, on the first day we drank around 90 beers, two litres of wine and a small bottle of jaegermesiter. and that's between only five of us. although not all of the wine was drank, some of it was snorted (nothing to do with me). these photos might also help:
a disconnected list to remind of the good times:
- "that's what your mum said yesterday"
- mini-megadrive with flicky
- kennet's manic guitar playing (and the impressive blister that resulted from it)
- too much raw garlic
- trivial pursuit but no moo-pah-chi
- scrambled egg made with water and cheese
- nazi mosquito squadrons
- the smell of petrol lawnmower
- throwing emil in bushes (containing nettles)
- emil asking jølle to do it again because i didn't get a good picture
- drinking neptune beer in the sea
- the crow that sounded like a dying cat
- no 'boten anna', thank fuck
and jølle, if you read this, i really need to breed your mp3 collection.
16.06.06: as i'm writing this my stupd website is still down. you can't read it and i can't update it. i don't know why i'm even bothering to write this. i'm particularly pissed off cos i'm going to be away all weekend (although i have no idea where exactly, just "somewhere"). and those punks better work weekends. oh, except it's friday now. of course i forget. so they better be working hard now. how difficult can it be to keep a server up and running? it's not like they have to do anything else.
also i dreamt i shaved my head. again. so you've been warned.
15.06.06: while not really trying to get out of bed this morning i had the strangest sequence of dreams about a bunch of kids i used to go to school with. it was all very confusing. the various school related dreams i've had over the years have completely tainted my memory of what middle school was like. most of my memories of that girl i had a crush on aren't even real, they're dreamed conversations. and this other guy, whose name i daren't mention, i can't even remember what happened between us. i know we were friends at one point and not at another, but i don't know when. i can remember fantasising about smashing his ugly fucking face repeatedly into the concrete playground, although i have no idea when that was. he was a proper prick anyway.
where i'm going with this is i just had to do some internet digging around on them. turns out there's nothing. i even checked friends reunited (spit, ack, spit). how can these people be completely invisible on the internet? it confounds me. i hate not knowing the end of a story.
the weather wasn't too hot yesterday but i went out with my camera anyway. i ended up getting completely lost and taking hardly any photos. a few strange turns and all of a sudden i was lost in a city i thought i was getting to know quite well, better than the people who take the bus and never look behind supermarkets at least. it looked like places i knew, like a familiar square but maybe from a different angle, or in a mirror. you have to revel in the novel, so off i walked in the wrong direction and into fredricksberg. who knew this place even existed? and who knew copenhagen had a planetarium?
after three hours i was so tired that i'm not even sure where i went. i know i made it all the way to the zoo and back (via paris, budapest and a rough area of london). halfway around the park i remember hearing the foreboding 'quarantined' by at the drive-in and 'sit down stand up' by radiohead. i was obviously doomed as the sky continued to darken. but managed to get home before the rain came.
the only thing i remember from the day before that is the huge low red moon over christiania, the one that followed me all the way home.
13.06.06: how do people in hot countries managed to even get out of bed in the morning? i can barely stand it. and i was thinking how i only know it's the weekend because the grass by the lake is busier than normal. but then i just realised it's tuesday. so what do i know anyway?
yesterday our house was cleaned in a flurry (also "fury") of cleaning chemicals, no doubt fast tracking us to throat cancer, and now it feels kind of alien. surfaces that squeak disturb me. and when all was done my armpits smelt like celery. it's not much of a super power but it's all i've got.
on the pages of the book that's lying open next to me is the best photograph i've seen in a long time. it's of malcolm x, taken by eve arnold, and he's looking quite dapper. this isn't the photograph that interested me though. at the bottom left of the next page is another, this one taken at a black muslim rally in washington dc where malcolm x was speaking. the photo looks out into the crowd of what you would expect to be, well, all black muslims. sitting at the front however (and taking up most of the photo) are three very white americans, armbands around their arms showing clearly the swastika. the man sitting in the middle is george lincoln rockwell, the founder of the american nazi party, and he shows more than a passing resemblance to an evil christopher reeves. the guy to his right is clearly his bitch and the other guy his muscle. at first this photo just didn't make sense.
the demands of the black muslims (nation of islam) included seperation from the united states and taking the entire east coast for themselves. these goals exactly matched those of the nazi party, who would take the rest of america. a scary and chilling thought.
it's an amazing photograph.