news [archive 40]

07.04.2009: my favourite game is that time just after waking, lying in bed eyes closed, feeling the fresh air and listening to the city just outside the window, trying to work out where i am. does it feel like brighton? toronto? rugby? copenhagen? unfortunately it's not a game you can play for very long. stupid brain.

But in a black hole, space is strongly curved, distorting the path of light rays. "My first thought was, this is impossible, binocular vision becomes useless," Hamilton told me. "It was a great revelation to me when I realised - oh my goodness, this is just a limitation of human beings." With the extra perspective of a third eye, he realised, you would be able to compensate for the gravitational distortion and therefore judge distances well.
(new scientist)

3D eyes would work just as well i think, and with the bonus of being able to make sense of 4D space too. stick that in your black hole. pretty video though, and all quite useless i'm sure.

and there's nothing better than seeing last night's borscht again.

anyway, travel and all that. we will see you at our gig on the 17th. please.

now i'm just waiting for sheep.

06.04.2009: truth is, people are idiots. all of us. constantly.

time was, when traffic lights changed the cyclists wouldn't just stand there and stare at the old woman on crutches barely halfway across the road, somewhat terrified. they'd help her across, corking the traffic at the very least. anything but just waiting with mild amusement to see how the grisly events play out.

time will be, a cocky driver waiting to turn infront of the oncoming traffic wont feel the need to stop and sleaze up a pretty girl waiting to cross. and when the car infront of him moves he wont pull squealing away, smiling back like the prick he is, not looking at all at the road and only trying to impress someone who couldn't care less. that way, he wont almost hit the oncoming car that drastically swerves to avoid him. it's just another scar on the road. and he fucking laughs.

we'll be better when they're all dead.

"how about meat flavoured monkey face?"
"no, mint".

tomorrow we're leaving for england. i'll miss sitting in studenterhuset, drinking pots of tea and listening to "jesus loves me" (but not my wife). but not really.

05.04.2009: me in this huge barren room, four floors up. the walls all glass and we're falling into a burning sky. wide and open, an empty office space vista. warmed by the new spring sun. the guitar's beautiful chrome splashing her golden afterbirth across every surface. unleash the fucking squid.

windows cracked open to the world. the sounds of the city burping and vomiting. three cheers for spring.

but then it's dark and we're burning through boiled sweets and coffee. all this talk of global value chains, outsourcing, export value, kenneth has turned his living room into a sweatshop. our heads down, racing towards the deadline. the remaining hours now in single figures that lead past sunrise. it's about half two in the morning and i'm on the fourth page of a sixteen page chapter when i realise i can't continue. finishing the chapter means looking up and it's morning, and all the pain that it entails. so that's the limit of my usefulness tested. and broken. 16 of the final 25 hours is a commitment i'm happy with. you can even call it an investment.

we were planning on celebrating the whole thesis completion thing on friday night, but tiredness and the complications of day rhythms got the better of us (i went to the garden centre and had vegan lasagne for supper). so saturday instead, a long band practice followed by 400kr of beer and the meanest ingredients for an indian feast. we make a good team. walking down norrebrogade in search of spices, wearing just a tshirt, beer in hand. i also had yellow feathers in my hair, but i'd forgotten about them at the time.

i can't really begin to explain to you how excited the idea of summer makes me.

and sunday has been the proper spring clean. all day gutting. emptying the cupboards. taking stock. repacking and repotting. all surfaces cleaned and wiped. one thing i will not stand is a return of the meal moths. we are ship shape and super tight.

02.04.2009: but i have to say something.

i'm vomiting on the inside.

no. although, i did overtake a woman this morning who was talking on her phone whilst cycling, wobbling all over the lane, and she had her child on the back. idiot woman, seriously. copenhagen cyclists are terrible. they need to go learn to cycle in a city where people die on their bikes every other week, teach them to ride safely.

some quotes i've had lying around going nowhere:

"walter benjamin asked himself how in 1830 the paris rioters shot at town clocks, in different parts of the city and without coordinating the action; for our part we cannot fail to reflect on why wild youths of today are burning cars. in fact, what does the car represent in contemporary society? we leave the question unanswered."

and with that as segue - "the automobile can't be blamed for anything. its conscience is as clear as monsieur citroen's conscience. it only fulfils its destiny: it is destined to wipe out the world", ilya ehrenburg.

a random person from this discussion, "i do hate the word freegan though, you don't have to be a tofufucker to dumpster dive". i like the delivery and sentiment, but not the rationale.

the independent did a good article about axxo (who you'll only know if you download films) that is worth a read. an interesting look into the bittorrent scene. i love the "i am axxo" comments at the bottom.

and i thought i should give a shout out to an untitled story it's the most enjoyable and long-lasting platform game i've ever played. it's harder than doukutsu (minus ridiculous end boss) and knytt put together, so it's not for everyone. but the exploration element kept me at it, and a year later i finally finished it (around the 98% mark, the arcades and rainbow challenge were just too hard). and it's such a damn cute story too. pay back a little love.

01.04.2009: happy april. from now on - all out joy. i'm very excited about this month. we have prospects. so let's burn them all in a towering pyre of joy. punch holes through the air. unravel indra's net. set the dolphins free. close your bank account and let the fuckers drown. 3 years, 8 months, 23 days.

and i never pulled an april fools on you. don't forget that.

and on the third most fun anarchist holiday of the year. if it was a holiday. hey, if you're an anarchist every day is a holiday. celebrate the good times.

london town, looking sharp. enjoy yourselves.

whilst i disappear in a haze of bad films, coffee and hard candy.

30.03.2009: there's something beautiful about instant coffee. something evocative. the not-quite-real taste and texture, a familiar something. comforting synthetic. maybe i'll discover exactly what once the caffine kicks in. but more likely it's just a forgotten feeling. how smells trigger emotions more effectively than any other sense.

i was going to write last night, what with it being the end of the weekend and me awake and alone in the apartment with having nothing to do. but i just couldn't be bothered. i played a stupid game with martin instead (between). it made little sense as a "two player game", but was strangely compelling. something tactile. something about signal to noise. like a co-operative game without the co-operation. i understand what he's getting at, and i like it. it's just a shame other players drop out so frequently.

anyway. my arms are lying limp. it's not so bad, but when alex asked if we'd be helping her move she didn't tell me her new apartment was on the top floor. fourth, fifth, sixth, whatever. i haven't climbed so many stairs since training for climbing kilimanjaro. but at the top of that final step, that beer and cheeseless pizza tasted wonderful. phew.

saturday had been our sunday and friday had been fun. we met up with jolle and company somewhere down amager for a few beers. entering the friend's livingroom almost all ten plus people were smoking. how often do you see that these days? through the smoke you could hardly see anything. and there were two people smoking outside too, maybe forced out by habitual routine. then later we were back to christiania for some voodoom reggae. the band was fun, we had a good time dancing some. it was straight foward, no complications.

but back outside, before entering the venue, we're standing around a roaring bin fire and finishing our beers. pusher street is quiter than a normal friday night, maybe because of the weather, but we're enjoying the atmosphere. after five or so minutes, the large bastard we're sharing the heat with, he comes over and tells jolle we have to move on. they're doing illegal things and we're not allowed to hang around and witness. jolle tells him christiania is for everyone, but this guy doesn't think so. the dark side of christiania raises its ugly (bald) head and shit dribbles out of its mouth. drug gangs, dirty business.

and tonight i'm missing mono. a mistake perhaps, another one, but 120kr is just too much money.

and why am i drinking instant coffee? because kenneth and katrine love that stuff and i'm round there apartment proof reading kenneth's thesis. indian denim. global value chains. i will be dreaming about it, which will be a nice change from the weird shit of last night. that's if i can ever sleep after all these coffees and sweets. this is the sound of me vibrating.

and i should tell you that on saturday we made chestnut and mushroom pie and it was delicious. i think my job here is done.

27.03.2009: hate breeds hate, blah blah blah. if only the knowledge of it solved the problem. truth be told i'm as much a hateful mother fucker as the people who piss me off. be it the guy on the bus demanding the driver stop playing indian music (and then claiming to not be racist), the guy in class talking offensive shite to the chinese girls (them being either oblivious or infinitely polite), or the woman on kobemagade shouting "det er en gaa gade" at me when i'm not even riding my bike. she must have an extremely sore throat if she shouts like that at everyone riding a bike on that street. hag.

but there's a difference between me and these uptight nasty people. if only i could tell you what it was. i'm sure.

back on the bus, at our stop, we made a point of exiting from the front of the bus and telling the driver we liked his music. he was a nice guy, and despite what the asshole's racist wife had suggested, he did understand danish.

so go back to your frikadeller, pigs and little mermaid. and fucking stay there.

and it rained. and i may as well have stayed where i came from too. i played the entire band practice in my boxers, trousers lying wet in the corridor. attempting to dry. leaving the student house i'm treated to all new smells. what country was this again? spring's pulling at the buds. kobemagade smells all metallic, smouldering wood, broken glass. soldering. lighty salted air from a sea battered by the rain. oxidisation. the last lingerings of a kitchen disaster not quite happened. different flavours of rain. the vast chasms of cold between the stars. you can actually taste it.

26.03.2009: why i love grant morrison in three simple quotes:

I don't know if we're so much inured to apocalypse as almost sexually obsessed by it. We could only love apocalypse more if it had 4 liters of silicone in each tit.

We know we've fucked up the atmosphere and doomed the lovely polar bears and we can't even summon up the energy to feel guilty anymore. Let the pedophiles have the kids.

Mogwai are very cool.

from an interview with wired, which is worth reading in its entirety. and now i feel stupid for missing out on all the batman and superman crap. i had 'final crisis' down as more perverse DC self-inflating marketing bullshit, but now it's at the top of my must read list.

25.03.2009: i wake up with a start, a little later than i'd hoped for. the room's filling up with thick sunshine and i have about thirty seconds to get out before it goes boom. i give the apartment about forty five minutes. something in the air reminds me of the time we lived here before. perhaps it's the reshuffle of our room. or perhaps it's just me. but it's three years and nothing much has changed. we didn't even celebrate our anniversary this march, but then julie barely even celebrated her birthday.

but where to escape to? i don't know.

two hours later i'm sitting cosy in studenterhuset. winning some gammons and watching the snow fall malaciously outside. jolle and carl dancing in a single strip of sunlight, forced outside by nicotine. the tea and coffee mugs pile up all around us. bowie plays, or doesn't.

later again and i have language class and we're all delirious. sleep deprivation or too much coffee or lack of food. we're talking about overpopulation and i point out that it's problem that solves itself - "we're churning out all these babies and people say there's a food deficit?". an injoke breaks free and wreaks havoc. "yes, coming from a vegetarian". so we talk food. and vegetarianism is an arguement i cannot lose, but will never win. just please don't think i'm trying to say that starving africans should go vegan.

back to the house for what i think was our most productive band practice yet. perhaps it was the erin taking up sofa space so we couldn't take breaks so easy, or perhaps it's because we have so much to get down. these pretty pretty ditties. i'm happy. now all we need is new equipment. then i'll be ecstatic.

and when i arrive home, some time around 1am, the apartment smells like an indian cornershop. and that's the perfect end to my day.

22.03.2009: too much has pissed me off this weekend. it's pathetic. let me catalogue these good times.

it started midweek when i went to the main library and the book the computer had promised me wasn't there. i should have reserved it that morning, but when is it ever necessary? i tried to check again but the library catalogue database was offline. back home i requested it delivered to my local library and on friday it arrived. except the library had closed by the time i got there, which is fair enough and i bear no grudge. but when i went back on saturday, all excited about the book i was supposed to be getting, it turns out i'd reserved the york advanced notes edition. wankers. the lot of them.

we went to the vegetable shop for aubgerine. this grocers is brilliant, they pack up old veg in huge bags and sell them for 10kr, often a bargain. that's four aubergine for just over a pound. but i decided to get just one aubergine instead, off the shelf, and they charged us 16kr for that medium fucking aubergine. if only i'd realised at the time. it's nothing, sure, but annoyance accumulates. and i was still a bit annoyed at paying 80kr for two beers on friday night, not even pints. and more recently annoyed at accidentally using the wrong card to get money out, taking a pitiful amount of my english account instead of my danish, a mistake that probably cost me over 50kr.

we made it a good saturday night though. we burgered at halifax, a smallish burger bar in town that does both celleriac and chickpea burgers. impressive menu and massive food. beautiful toilets too, whoever had been in before me hadn't flushed, and i couldn't quite work out if they'd been sick or had serious diarrhoea. a very strange shade of orange.

cinemas. does anyone know a cinema that doesn't reak of popcorn? please. i can't stand that greasy filth in the air. and it makes me sound like a right pompous prick, but whatever. we saw the watchmen, which i might comment on another time, but i might not. if you need my opinion on it be satisfied that i enjoyed it as much as someone whose read the comic so many times can.

now it's sunday and we discover we've been sharing our room with various molds and fungus, all shades of grey and churlish, creeping their way up the walls in the far corner. the discovery set off a serious spring cleaning, we've had to move our wardrobe across the room and dismantle our gorgeous green plastic milkcrate shelves. one area of the wall had fungus bulging from it, a thick vertical carpet the same colour as the wallpaper, scraped off in thick clumps. now our room smells like mushrooms. a great way to spend sunday. airing out.

nice day for hanging out in christiania though. even when manefiskeren have run out of soya milk and i really wanted a cappuccino. and none of their cakes are vegan. bastards. but anyway. good times.

21.03.2009: more tentacles. a bit rough, but they wouldn't have you any other way:

also i've really let radio emoware slip. i've had 'happiness is a warm gun' in my head for two weeks now, and it seems perfect for this grey but hopeful spring morning. especially if you're walking back from the local bakery with a big bag of rundstykker. six. sure, lennon does is it better, but you'll have to make do with kim and tanya (haunting away in the background there) as it's the only version i have right now. so hurray for gratuitous meter shifts.

btw, my favourite breeders record is still the safari ep. incase you were wondering. did it just get cold in here or is it just goosebumps? "and this i know.."

18.03.2009: i've been practicing my tentacles:

subconciously, of course. though i do need to be able to doodle in 6/8. a thought at this hour that almost makes sense.

more soya milk necessary

jolle is back from his travels, but march is proving not to be the month of the butterfly. first our gear was stolen, now the bass amp packs in and the drum stool busts. we've not given up on either of them, but after half an hour dissecting the amp we came up with nothing. what gives? at least my reherser graffiti finally managed to offend someone (my response, "i think it means more kill the concept of god, rather than any god in particular, because that would just be stupid"). but it was a stupid night up there, like being asked by a volunteer to drink up and leave because we're closed ("er, actually we're just about to get another drink").

so any ideas what's wrong with the amp? there was no crash or bang when it stopped working, the sound just ceased (although it was hard to tell behind jolle's raging guitar noise). we plugged in another cab and that worked, so that rules out the amp being blown. we opened it up and all the connections to the speaker cone seemed to be in order. putting it all back we tried another cab again but this time that wouldn't work either. there's always the chance that we had the gain on zero somewhere, but it's unlikely. bouts of stupidity aside. help.

also, i've totally fallen for a guitar. he has one left and it's many hours away, so luckily i can't touch it, else i'd probably have to keep it. to come to my senses i'm taking myself into town to look in all the guitar shops, to remind myself that there are many nice guitars out there. and i don't need this one. but honestly though, it's been many years since i saw a guitar i really liked. and when was the last time i bought myself anything expensive? long time ago.

17.03.2009: bah, these are just winter thoughts. in the summer none of it matters. and today the spring is raging so hard there's cardboard flying around all over in the street. the police are roping off street corners because of falling materials. all the bikes are on their sides. laurence has rosy cheeks and all smiles.

yesterday i was going to write about the cleaning day at studenterhuset, but i got somewhat distracted (sorry about that) and now i can't really be bothered. what's to tell anyway? every size of broken glass behind the bar. six months of grime, disease and shards. the perfect combination to be on your hands and knees in. arm stretched out, no light down there, cleaning under the beer tubes and my hand gets trapped, pushed down by the weight of them. something slices deep into my knuckle. i haven't bled like that since i used to pick my nose too vigorously. and after a morning of organic sodas and a night of little sleep i almost panicked. but it was nothing. i'm over exaggerating of course. and it's healed surprisingly quickly.

the night before katrine was hosting a little party, proper nice and all that. two crates provided endless beer and a table of nibbles provided endless food. and there was thai curry (finally some vegan green curry paste, although something made it taste like cream of asparagus) and spring rolls. all that in combination with the early start the next day, followed by a bad breakfast (fuck the student house for not cattering better for us vegans), i was all exhaustion and little else. fucking cleaning chemicals. i slipped into two naps during the eight-or-so hours i was there, then made a quiet exit after dinner. one can only take so much cheesey metal.

back home i collapsed on the sofa and didn't move much during the following 24 hours. totally wasted, and i didn't even have the pleasure of getting smashed before it. phweee..

16.03.2009: i've been doing a lot of volunteer work recently. all last week i was busy. it was fisk on monday, then helping out with greenpeace on tuesday wednesday thursday, and then helping clean up studenterhuset all saturday. i'm at fisk again now. i guess there's something about working for no money that appeals to me. or maybe it's the other way around. i can't stand the feelings of imprisonment that come with paid work. studenterhuset is just for fun. but fisk is good, it's definitely a worthy cause, but somehow it doesn't quite satiate. perhaps it's too indirect, the benefits of my work too far removed, or perhaps i'm too cynical of those benefits. or maybe what i'm doing is just too damn easy. perhaps i need something to be a challenge before it seems worthwhile. if it's easy anyone can do it, no? so why should i bother. it's tricky for sure.

"will program for food", etc.

more annoying is that someone just bought in a huge stack of new cups, including seven that are identical to my favourite cup. so now that's not even special anymore. and now even worse, she sees my cup and "oh perfect, now we have a set of four to sell". i try to tell her they're actually different, they have different stamps on the underside, but she doesn't care. "but, but that's my favourite cup" i tell her. "well, do you want to bring money into fisk or have your favourite cup?". i nearly clock the bitch. "i'm down for triple shifts this month, do you want your shop to stay open or do you want me to fuck off?", i don't ask her. so now i'm in a bad mood. so be it.

i rant to myself. "compare it to the number of free fucking lattes and cakes you munch down on everytime you come in here, you fat fucking fuck. the number of customers you scare away with your ghastly fucking witch cackle, your terrifying burning eyes". i go on and on and i could be ranting about anyone now. i used to be such a nice child.

sigh. talk about immaturity. talk about emotional instability. talk about needing to punch a woman (whilst wearing a bear suit). i'm such a dick today.

i'll take it out on the mammoth. we have practice after shift and the rage will help. last practice we played so hard i gave myself a sore throat. i must have been growling or something. i'm starting to really love our material. it will make a beautiful ep.

but back to the shop, how is volunteer work going to satisfy you when you feel so unappreciated? my usual all-smiles facade cracked somewhat. no matters.

nothing is quite working out today. the book i went to pick up from the library was no longer there. then the camera shop wanted to charge 600kr to clean my sensor. now i'm going to lose my cup to that meddling hag. at least i'm stocked up on soya milk. i have seven cartons in the house. thank you netto and your obscene offers (8kr off).

13.03.2009: we have no hot water here. not for the last two days. but i can't complain, at least not whilst grilly is reading (who had no hot water for the longest time).

remember a while back i wrote a letter to symingtons, complaining that they made sosmix non-vegan and boohoohoo? i received a letter from them the other day (an actual letter, how nice), in which amongst other less interesting things is written:

Firstly, we as a company only use natural ingredients, which the old recipe did not have.

Secondly, when we created the recipes for the the three Granose products affected, we did not have a milk free alternative for the flavouring needed, as it needs to be non-artificial, have the same shelf-life and mix well with the other ingredients.

We are now however happy to let you know that our supplier of flavourings has informed us that they have found a milk-free alternative and we have updated the recipes for the three products in question and the flavouring containing milk have [sic] been removed.

i like their reasoning and i like that they've managed to fix it, so hurrahs all round for those who complained. i'm a little sceptical as to whether this magic new ingredient wasn't available to them before, but that's a minor point really.

i haven't taken any photos for a long time. i've been feeling uninspired. and i've been having dreams where my camera is broken and unreliable, i take photos but they don't get transferred to the memory card. it's unsettling. and i have a similar problem in reality too, i'm starting to get that blasted "err99" when taking the occasional photo, rather just than when switching the camera on. also i've got dust all over my sensor filter. so much crap to fix. but anyway, the point was going to be that here are some photos i took a while ago and only just remembered:

i like the tree especially. proper like gnarly.

12.03.2009: i've spent most of the last three days attending energy crossroads, a student climate conference hosted by copenhagen university. i can sum it up nicely by saying it's been a good mix of the interesting and the pointless.

i got in as part of greenpeace, manning a table of materials for people to browse and take. the stickers were very popular. the booklets in danish were not. and this is where the 'pointless' comes in, many hours spent reading 'a clockwork orange' behind a desk of information that no one can read. drinking coffee like it's water. on the second day i was too tired and uninterested to listen to the talks. but that was ok. and then on the third day we went back to the greenpeace office and stocked up on the english language material which they should have given us in the first place. bad planning? they clearly hadn't researched who was going to be at the conference. and someone should be asking why greenpeace's office is so hot (is 23.5 degrees too obscene? it felt like it coming in from the cold). that third morning nearly all of material went in the first break - a mad five minute rush with 200 people trying to get coffee, crazed. proper horrorshow.

today there was a great panel discussion about decoupling economic growth from energy consumption. can we keep developing sustainably (we?), through increased efficiency and new technology, or do we need to seriously curb our consumption? writing it like that makes it seem very black and white, but the discussions were good. i was close to asking a question relating to the excess duty being charged on wind farms, them having to be shut down at night, and how we can decrease our reliance on coal when such stupid issues occur, but i chickened out. then i felt compelled to ask how you can talk about constant and sustainable economic growth on a global level when it's a closed system with limited resources. but there's no need to drop my lack of economic knowledge on everyone. something else i'm wondering, the reductions in CO2 that some western countries are trumpeting, how much of it is due to them shifting production abroad?

also, i know it's only fair that a representative from "denmark's leading energy company" was there (dong energy), but i can't help think those invested in not acting should be treated with much caution. i'm cynical, yes.

i was just tainted by our run-in with the schiller institute the day before. those shady mother fuckers, they tried to slip their filthy propaganda ("british climate lies will lead to genocide") in with the greenpeace reports (possibly without realising it). i'll give anyone space, they seemed to mean well, but after reading the flyer properly there was no way we could let people think greenpeace endorsed it. five minutes later they came back and i explained my problem with their misleading and manipulative bullshit, that i strongly disagreed with it, then tried to help them find somewhere suitable to leave it (not in the trash necessarily, but as far away from us as possible). looking back, i wish i'd asked them what is their agenda, exactly? it seems to me that they're climate change deniers (at least of man-made climate change) and are promoting inaction. apparently we should rely on technology that hasn't been invented yet. you're starting to sound like the scientologists, and i just know you're going to hate that.

returning to the good guys, we also saw daniel kammen (incorrectly billed as obama's climate advisor) who was a great speaker, and james hansen, who wasn't so much. he is however massively fucking cool (and quite cuddly). plus we trekked out of the way to see his free talk, open to all, at the frie gymnasium (an independant/democratice/alternative high school that happens to have one of the denmark's highest grade averages). the fascinating venue and vastly different context (organisation and action ahead of the copenhagen climate summit in december) made it all worth it.

but damn i've eaten a lot of salad.

10.03.2009: there are important things you need to know. i'll be in england from april 7th to april 19th. more specifically i'll be in wales from the 9th to the 14th (or thereabouts). i will be in london from the 16th to the 18th and in reading that night. drunken butterfly are playing with to the boats..! (recognise the site design?) on the 17th at the white hart, which is three minutes walk left out of whitechapel tube station (not to be confused with the white hart next to aldgate east on whitechapel high street).

please deal with this information in a responsible and appropriate manner.

09.03.2009: i like my thoughts in the morning. they're fresh and clear, untainted by the processes and experiences of the day. this is my excuse for staying in bed so long. cosy and warm, i can snuggle up with whatever remains of my last dream. whatever that might have been. perhaps i should ditch my non-dairy diet and start eating cheese just before i go to bed at night. that way i'll be able to get up early.

it took a hit this weekend anyway, but it was planned. for julie's birthday we surprised her with a trip tp perch's tea room. she was miserable all morning because it was the only thing she wanted and to do and she was convinced we weren't going ("you're dragging me to an art exhibition instead?"). and there was no chance i was going somewhere so posh (i was dressed up, smart shirt and tie and everything, but our waitress still saw straight through it) for high tea and not trying the scones. and i had a matcha tea smoothie, which felt totally inappropriate - sitting in a tea house where you have to book well in advance and i'm drinking a milkshake? but i look at our reflection in the huge mirror covering the back wall and we don't look as out of place as i'd have thought.

we did highstreet shopping and we did sushi. like a birthday is an excuse to become a different person. like you need an excuse.

sunday was international womens' day. did you notice? there were a few demos here in copenhagen, but the one i wanted to go to was for women only. i was not welcome. which, to be honest, is just bullshit. we are all in this together. if it was a 'take back the night' i'd understand, but not a party in the middle of town. i was busy in the kitchen anyway, and what better way to celebrate womens' day? we cooked an almighty roast or brutal proportions, as we are to do. the six of us ate ourselves silly.

it's been a good weekend for food. it was vegan pizza that tore me away from studenterhuset on the friday, but that's another story (see below). kenneth's friday was much more interesting, but that's not my story and he doesn't have a blog. so nevermind.

i've been enjoying exploit. it's a clever puzzle game where you have to hack into various systems. it just feels right. it's an fun model. and you get to create your own levels. here are mine:

moving swiftly on.

06.03.2009: it was a great practice we had yesterday - all shock and awe and dense levels of irony. we went down into our basement only to find the reherser door open, and inside nothing quite how we left it. taking stock, we're missing jolle's guitar, a cymbal, the hi-hats, a snare bag, and a sports bag. several expensive pieces of equipment had been messed with, their wires pulled out etc, and the soundcard had been pulled out of kenneth's computer and carefully placed back on top, but all had been left. a small flight case had been opened to reveal a very expensive mic, but that had also been left. all our pedals were sitting pretty, and the sexy ibanez bass sat shining on the guitar rack. it makes no sense at all.

brilliant, because if it's someone who knows us they now have a list of what they should have taken, all our which we now have stored elsewhere. infact, the only consolation is knowing that whoever did this is a complete fucking moron. you'd have to be an imbecile to fuck up a theft so badly. it's almost funny.

there were no signs of forced entry, so we can only presume it was someone who had a key for all three doors that stand between the street and our shit. supposedly there may be a few of them knocking around in the wilderness. that or the wankers very good at lockpicking (i promised kenneth i'd get the word "wankers" into our update). the gate to the street and the outer building door may have been left momentarily open, but we're satisfied ourselves that our door was definitely locked when we left it.

if we ever find out who did it they have a violent date with our egg slicer.

04.03.2009: emil has left us (but shafts of light sometimes grace the corner of our rooms). we swap one person for another. we followed him to the airport and off the skinny dude went to africa for two months, in baggy pants and with a baseball cap covering over his mowhawk. saying i'm jealous wouldn't begin to explain how i feel. but most of my emotions have more to do with a sleepless night than being at an airport with nowhere to go.

all scandinavian airports smell of hotdogs. which reminds me of the other great thing about julie being back - she bought a huge bag of vege products from sweden and they are absolutely incredible. why can't you get them here? the vege bacon (not rashers, but chopped up into pieces) is better than anything you can get in england. the vege hotdogs are definitely comparable. i think in the future we will be taking more bus trips to malmo.

i was totally on the tv today. this came as a surprise, alex shouting at me from the living room while i was trying to balance five saucepans on the hob (swedish bangers and mash, of course) you can see me here in the background at 3:15. that's me drinking from my favourite coffee cup. and now you know what fisk looks like as well.

i was fisking monday too. the new coffee machine is much better than the last one, stop by and i'll prove it. then we had a "last supper" with emil. burgerandfriescore. followed by a beer at zum bier garten, where i managed to discover my new favourite beer and also forget what it was. it was dark brown, smooth toffee, but not particularly sweet nor sour nor bitter. it began with a t and ended in much joy (taffelol).

and edward from ireland, thanks for the "blah". although i'm not sure why you bothered.

01.03.2009: you should never check the date just after midnight. it's much too confusing.

we had a pretty mellow time working at the student house last night. shouldn't places like that be booming on a saturday night? but it was quiet, but not without it's mishaps and oddities.

we had a couple of purses stolen, which is a real shame. although i have very little sympathy. the signs that are plastered all of the walls warning of theft are not there for fun. you don't put expensive looking bags down on the floor and expect them to still be there an hour later. after the second bag was reported missing i told them in a nice as way as possible that it was almost certainly gone and not coming back. not that it stopped them from walking around the entire area asking everyone if they'd seen it.

then someone threw up over one of the sofas. we did our best to save it but there's only so much you can do. i wheeled it into the corner, turned it around and barricaded it off with tables. and that still didn't stop someone coming along later and sitting in it. that's the price you pay for moving tables, chairs and sofas around. they're usually put where they are for a reason. but what's so difficult about making it to the toilet or outside to be sick? or you could at least aim for the floor. to be honest i'm just gutted that i missed the guy bent double across the chair and wretching. seeing it might have made up for the pain of cleaning up.

when it came to the cleaning we were done quickly. the last time i looked only two beers had been checked off on the cleaning sheet, meaning us volunteers had only drank two of the allocated 16 free beers. mellow indeed. we had great music too. and ipod battle is barely a battle when we all share the same music. i think we even played the oitonomous ep a good few times, it sounds good over the big sound system.

i was in bed before five, which is something of a victory. i think. although that last falafel played havoc with my stomach sometime around 8am. really i have nothing more to stay. apart from julie has now come back, hurray.

27.02.2009: isn't it just the prettiest day? i feel kind of wiped out after our recording session last night, but it's gorgeous out. it's almost hoodie weather. i cycled extra slow into town to enjoy it as much as possible. freewheeling along the canal. now i'm sitting in fisk trying to do some work, but not getting much done. can you see a theme emerging? coffee too.

but the recording session, five tracks with only minor difficulties (ska and odd speed changes). this morning kenneth's bouncing the tracks around and they're sounding great. i can't help laugh and smile when listening to them back. bring the oi! we'll get some previews up as soon as we've agreed on final versions (and titles). perhaps i can knock up a website too. just thinking out loud, sorry.

i read earlier than danish wind turbines are producing too much energy at night and they might have to shut them down during these periods. what kind of bullshit news is that? apparently energy producers have to pay excess production duty on electricity generated when there's too much in the grid. how the fuck does that work? the energy production costs are minimal, and why shut down the wind turbines when you could shut down non-sustainable energy production. it's backwards. and that's ignoring the fact they should be using hydrogen cells to store the overproduction.

a scarily large group of goths just walked past. the corner sofa is a great place for people watching, with the huge window wide open onto the street. the cute giraffes and rows of lamb silhouettes (which mean what exactly?).

now i'm really hungry. have nothing interesting to say. sorry. and there's all this chaos going on around me. people looking through clothes from africa, making orders. signing stuff. crazy colours and patterns and smells. but that was just the tulip burning. i thought it was toast.

and last night at studenterhuset, after closing, listening to the recording of the noise from our gig. pure hysterical magic, perfect over a good soundsystem. i just wish i'd been at the gig to hear it, rather than being at the gig making it. again i apologise for talking rubbish. maybe i should just go home and make borscht. try and listen to the recordings of the dear lake bros from last friday without crying. i lost sleep again, to the pit of dirt outside my bedroom window. and i've been sitting here too long anyway, it's turning dark already.

26.02.2009: no, it's not at all spring. but we are near enough to the equinox that i can cycle all the way to school during daylight. you don't know how happy it makes me. and so i'm stuck in the middle of a junction on norrebrogade, trying to turn left, waiting for the bus that always decides to pull out when i pull in, and the smell from all the turkish and arabian restaurants and takeouts makes you feel like you're actually in a different country. smatters of arabic graffiti. the light is just so, slowly scrapping across the horizon and clambering over the city. beat up cars. you could be anywhere.

so no wonder the danish rightwing hate this place. all the shootings are just an excuse.

my language class is becoming uninspiring. i missed a lesson last week for the emergency band practice and it's as if all i did was blink. i could sleep through these lessons, i could spend a whole lesson and only say a few words. the teacher does all the work. it's kind of annoying.

after class it was back to kenneth's to cook lunch for his apartment. we make a good team. he'd already prepared spring rolls (from scratch) and prepped the aubergine. i got to business with the thai curry. it was a great meal.

yesterday i stayed in, knuckling down but mostly wasting time. grand games of backgammon.

and now i'm off into town to hang. that's our great plan. we used to love doing this as kids, just hanging for the sake of it. what we were doing was killing time. that's what you do when you're young. you're waiting for better things, to grow up and spread your seed wings. you're immortal and have nothing better to do. just kill time. i'm sure we hated it back then. miserable, sitting around at bus stops, littering up the town centre. scaring grandmas. but now it seems idyllic. it's what happens when you're not trying. not paying attention.

24.02.2009: saturday became sunday and sunday kind of disappeared. monday was plagued by insomnia induced zombie antics and now it's tuesday and i can't do the work i was promising myself i'd do, because despite trying about five different ways to access my gmail i simply can't get in.

saturday unhappened. i think we all drank a little too much on friday (some on thursday too apparently). but that's all just part of the process. rock and roll needs its fuel. and i had a great time. the gig went well. it was variably sloppy but invariably fun. brash with hints of pop. and we topped it off with some good solid noise (which you can listen to on the drunken butterfly website, if you particularly want to). egg slicer mashup. and everyone elses feedback was good too. but we sold a total of zero CDs, which doesn't actually bother me. it's not like we're out for the hard sell. and what is it about crazy people dancing at the front of our gigs? we always attract the weird drunk ones.

the only reason i can still remember saturday is because kenneth and katrina came over for massive dinner. i cooked three different curries and made onion bhajis. the whole dinner used a garlic bulb and 1kg of onions. we'd have had popadoms too if only i hadn't been worrying so much about the rice. then we watched batman and ate gelatine free sweets. you couldn't ask for much more, huh?

sunday was me and alex hanging out in the kitchen. we played backgammon, made inky mess, and found films we wanted to watch. ate potato soup. i would have stayed in all day if only i'd not left my phone in the reherser. ghastly fucking weather.

but why couldn't i sleep? the bed just didn't feel my own. i should have gotten up, pissed, shook the duvet, read a chapter, then gone back to bed. instead i just lay there staring out the window, wondering how come there's so much traffic at 4am on a sunday night. i watched some jpod, which i've got into despite it not being very good (sorry douglas). and despite it all i manged to get up 8am.

hurray for fisk. i played reggae all morning and the only people who bought anything were polite rich norwegian girls. i brewed a whole pot of coffee and i was the only person who drank it. but my buns were awesome. anyway.

spring me up.

20.02.2009: our new washing machine has arrived. it's very tiny. when i look at it i feel funny. proportionally untethered. it's odd. but very welcome. when we were in haliburton we had a bath to wash clothes in, here we got nothing.

but i'm exhausted today. i had two band practices yesterday, nicely seperated by shepherd's pie and few bottles of wine. we need to get our chops up and our shit together for a last minute support slot at studenterhuset. we've been pretty sloppy since jolle broke his arm, so it's good to tighten it all up again.

and there was oi! practice too, which is always easier after some lubrication. we had a couple of guests along for it and they didnt seem too unimpressed. we're making good progress, rewrote some old songs and baesjed out another one. we're going to be ready to take it to the streets at about the same time emil fucks off to africa for two months. we'll work something out. and it seems like it'll be easy for us to get gigs, what with us being the only band that actually plays oi!. or some weird shade of it.

so i got home a bit late and julie left early this morning. i would have liked to have given her a better goodbye, but i was too busy being a lazy and crap boyfriend. my punishment is being lonely all week.

i thought this article on indymedia logs was really interesting. always a contentious issue, but let's be honest, if you've got information important enough to require higher levels of security is indymedia really the place for it? i'm beginning to think most of their security is purely to protect the careless people who don't know what they're doing.

anyway, here's why i like philip pullman, my favourite paragraph from 'the subtle knife':

"there are two great powers and they've been fighting since time began. every advance in human life, every scrap of knowledge and wisdom and decency we have has been torn by one side from the teeth of the other. every little increase in human freedom has been fought over ferociously between those who want us to know more and be wiser and stronger, and those who want us to obey and be humble and submit."

kill god.

18.02.2009: i guess it comes down to something like low-level warfare. cycling home late last night i noticed they'd cleaned up all of the cult shaker adverts. which is a funny use of the word, since the only way to clean them is to remove them, but you get my meaning.

of course it wasn't long before they'd all been attacked again:

this was a tuesday night. i imagine it's much easier than on a thursday, which is probably why the ones on the main crossings got hit too.

but then this morning two of them had already been cleaned again.

what was that about burning them down? i vote for escalation.

i actually had an opportunity to steal one of the 'keys' that open the advert frames the other morning. a worker was putting up a new advert and had walked back to get something from his van. he would have seen me, there was no way of avoiding it, but i was on my bike and fully masked. i'd have been gone before he could do anything about it. but nevermind.

we had a great band practice yesterday. instrument swapping and sitting around on the floor playing with effect chains. it's amazing the noises you can make by sucking on the end of a single jack plug (not advised in a room without grounding). that classic g-sharp buzz for half an hour, mutated through everything noise box we have. halfway through i unplugged the input and the sound just kept on going. relentless. the noise dies when we say so. another few minutes and i could smell the distinctive odour of burning. what was it now? valves and coils melting. but it was nothing. maybe just ear hair.

16.02.2009: i do these fisk morning shifts to keep me on my toes. which it does. especially when i'm the only person here. when i turn up and the lights are on and the alarm's off. coffee's been left in the pot (from saturday), the till's closed (as opposed to open, so people can see there's no cash here) and all the money has been counted incorrectly (more annoying because you can't open the till until you know how much money there is). ok, not all the money. but enought to warrant me counting it all out again. my tills balance these days. faktisk. also the sandwich board thing was missing. i finally found it where i'd left it friday night, meaning they hadn't even put it out on saturday. but that's no biggie.

then i come back to the till and i'd been logged out of gmail. grr.

i have to go downstairs to restart my music. that's 33 'mates of states' songs already. and that's when i find the small jug of milk glued to the table. cream. i refuse to look at who had the last shift, i just don't want to know what useless volunteer was responsible for all the mess.

outside it's snowing ever so lightly. this is not weather that's conducive to playing spaz guitar. and that's what i really need to be doing right now. spazzing. glitch.

so once the carrot cake has finished baking me and kenneth walk over to studenterhuset and drink tea until it's 4pm, the time the antique shop besides our practice room closes for the day. then we play some spaz and talk shop. i realise i need to investigate my pedal futher. i've only ever had a superficial understanding of it. i've had it for over ten years now (wow, is that true?) and only today have i unravelled the beauty that lies within its effect chains. to think i could never build my own patches from scratch. shame on me.

now, how can i use this knowledge to take over the world?

15.02.2009: sunday evening again. where were we? i guess that depends.

earlier today we were just up north of copenhagen checking out the new max ernst exhibition at the louisiana gallery. it's a confusing little place, very expensive, but it seems they have an excellent curator. and after seeing the great job they did with ernst i'm pissed we missed the manga exhibit. now i want to paint. giant burning donuts in the sky. and read doom patrol. all of it in one go. surrounded by birds.

we were up there on thursday too, but not quite so far. we woke up "early" and went for a longish walk through dyrehaven and jaegersborg hegn. they're nice parks in the summer, but in the winter there's hardly anyone else up there. it's brilliant in a snow and trees way. and calling them parks is somehow totally weird because they're more like woods. and of course julie knows them quite well, she did a project on jaegersborg hegn recently. she seems to know every stand, exactly what tree goes where, etc.

but i couldn't find a reverb pedal anywhere.

then on friday me and emil were rocking fisk. we make a good team. we were there from 2pm to about 1am, since we were having a volunteer klub fisk film night thing. it's a long time to run the place, but since it's unpaid and i finally discovered i can plug my ipod into the soundsystem with the right cable, it's was all good. especially since i had the balls to whip us up some scrambled eggs mid shift (water and sunflower oil, tastes amazing) and i found myself another sexy tie. at about half six we locked up and took a quick walk around town to 'check out' the cult shaker adverts and acquire food. then we opened again for the film. it wasn't my style, so i sat upstairs on my own, most of the lights off and with a beer, and got right stuck into my new book.

when everyone had left i closed up the till on my own, and for the first time it went without a single hitch and even balanced. then i met up with julie and alex who were hanging in out in a smokey bar around the corner that was full of the usual semi-obnoxious and entertaining characters. and i didn't eat falafel on the way home. but julie did. and you know what we should have done when we got back? something to do with cult shaker, but we were way too drunk. drunkenness plus law breaking is a bad combination.

moving on, saturday night we had dinner at the k's apartment. i took a day out of my diet for kenneth's demon lasagne, made with plates of deep fried aubergine and about 750g of various cheeses. the dish is so hardcore it took five bottles of wine to wash it down (or was it six?). but then we were six people. so. maybe it's not too bad. they do a damn fine dinner party those two.

you know what they say about cheese though, i had horrendous dreams. i dreamt our room was half full of water inhabited by flesh eating squids. they hide under the cupboards until feeding time.

what i really hate is the old woman, the bitch with the huge fur coat, who gets on the bus infront of you and takes the only two seats left in the whole bus, sitting in the outer seat so no one can take the other. i'd have asked her to move up, but i'd rather stand than sit next to such a dead animal (the coat).

14.02.2009: the cult shaker adverts are back. they just wont stay dead. the new adverts aren't as offensive as their previous efforts, not quite (you can see most of them here), but they're making up for it in sheer numbers. the adverts are absolutely everywhere. like a dirty fucking rash across the whole city. pimples.

i can't explain how angry it makes me, that they can get away with this over and over again. i wish someone would go around and smash up every single billboard featuring their adverts. burn them down, i don't care. since the advertising regulation authority wont stop them, the only course of action is to make it too expensive for AFA JCDecaux to continue giving cult shaker advertising space. property damage?

at least some people are making an effort:

it's a start, but that's all.

the funniest one is right in the centre of town (kudos to whoever did it) where someone had sprayed "sixim" instead of "sexism". it took us a while to work out what it said ("i love to fight sexism"), but that's not important, because the actual message is clear. we don't accept these adverts and we wont stand for them.

maybe you'd like to tell AFA JCDecaux what you think.

11.02.2009: it turned me all a little sour. that's what it felt like tuesday morning, standing in the shower at gone 2pm. sour.

monday morning i was woken up by a call from fisk asking if i could come in that afternoon. everyone was sick and they think i'm brilliant so they call me. and it's funny, because on my calendar it said i was already supposed to be working that afternoon anyway. so there i was again, working the whole place on my own. it was great until a trainee came in and wanted training. i'm totally the wrong person for that, but it was ok. i managed to send her home early, she was just making too much mess and destroying the coffee machine.

then we had our first drunken butterfly practice since absolutely ages ago. i was exhausted and having trouble getting into it, especially since we have a new bass amp (eske stole his back) and it wasn't being nice to me. then i managed to fall asleep down there, and then it really was time to go home.

then came the sour.

but what else? how do you tell the difference between sleep paralysis and dreaming about sleep paralysis? is that a distinction you can make? i've had something like that a couple of times recently and it's terrifying. but as soon as you wake up it's like the bubble pops and the fear dissipates instantly. or at least until you look it up on the internet and read that it can last up to several minutes. i have a few very distinct memories of similar things happening when i was younger, but again it might just have been dreams. very frustrating dreams. anyway, i want to stop thinking about it now.

i just printed about 80 photos. that felt good. although the shop printed them a bit too dark, especially compared with the other printing place who printed them too light. really this is ok, because it means it's not my fault when they come out wrong. or something like that.

and i finished reading philip pullman's 'nothern lights' last night, at some stupid hour. it was very enjoyable. i had many exciting things to say about it, but my brain being what it is has mushed it all up. i love how he writes so explicitly anti-church. and how the evil people are all authoritarians and the good people are all gypsies and witches (ok that's not strictly true, but i like how it sounds). i get the feeling the film is going to disappoint me in this respect. and speaking of which, it's time to watch it.

09.02.2009: my mistake was following that all up with a midnight shift at studenterhuset. they were one person short and kenneth had already signed up, plus i'd been promised they'd be shutting as early as two. i couldn't resist. and infact, i was even disappointed when we turned up to be told the whole till system was down and they might not stay open past midnight. meaning we'd get our beer tickets and our housecards renewed for only doing cleaning, but there would be no fun serving at the bar.

me and kenneth descended into (what you can quite accurately describe as) the bowels of the student house to kick off our shift with an ear and nose bleeding musical smash-a-thon. we rock out, and it's as if our amps, all burning valves and menacing vibrations, have summoned kali into the room. the best takes you never record.

it was an easy shift and there weren't many assholes. i befriended some american students, newly in copenhagen, who kept coming back to the bar for weirder and weirder scandinavian shots. the cleaning was easy too, since there wasn't much in the way of cleaning to be done, although sweeping clean floors just feels a bit redundant and pointless. i was a bit worried when one guy locked himself in the toilet for about an hour being sick, but that's just part of the job.

even better, this time they remembered i don't eat dairy and ordered me a falafel for when we'd finished up.

we then spent the next few hours sitting around and talking about pretty much everything. and then you have the doomed feeling when you suddenly notice it's starting to get light outside. that's the time to leave. i have no idea how they cope in the summer when it's light before 4am, the time they normally close if there's a big event on.

so after that sunday kind of disappeared into the arse of saturday. so it goes.

07.02.2009: what i'm wondering is, would we have crashed the party if i hadn't have read that book? it was beyond late, we'd already been drinking for about ten hours straight, but the party shining brightly up on the forth floor of our building was the only rational place to be. missing this opportunity to get friendly with the neighbours would be criminal. so we put our slippers on, i made myself a martini, and we went up.

it was smooth. the person who let us in told us who lived there and we went straight over to introduce ourselves, explaining how we were totally crashing but weren't going to outstay our welcome. we're just saying hi, and look, we even bought our own drinks. he was just happy we weren't the cop who lives upstairs. it's funny how everyone hates that guy, although not at all surprising. when we ran out of people to talk to we danced, with a mammoth head on a stick and me wearing a top hot. an irish guy sank me his story over the song that was playing. and as were leaving the host topped up my now empty glass with jagermeister. friendly people at 3am.

we'd started at the geology bar at 4pm, on the dot. it was their grand opening so there was free champagne and bottles of beer two for 10kr. it was me, julie, kenneth and emil. also a guy called martin. then later jolle and his sister too. so we were a good group. playing table football on what might be the oldest table football table in existence. when we got bored of the beer (it took about five bottles, plus one for the walk) we left for china box and to see some bands at studenterhuset (the first band were neither here nor there, but the headliners were incredible. or at least their drummer was). we had an epic game of meyer, kenneth won.

it was a good night on all fronts. and really i guess it was more like day. but whatever. it's been a long time since we've had such a session.

on the way home a girl started chatting with us, wanting to walk with us because she didn't feel safe walking alone, and she'd drank too much to cycle. she'd taken full advantage of the free alcohol at the party she'd been to, which was something to do with same brand as the jacket i was wearing.

and that's when we saw the house party.

all the hilarious things i've forgotten.

my mushrooms this morning smell like twiglets.

06.02.2009: halfway through the film and halfway through the whiskey i realised i'd made a mistake. why are we here when we could be somewhere? across the lake math rock is happening, but we have missed the boat for a profit of 60kr. watching this film is like watching porn because you're not sure if you want to have sex.

and here i am at university again. i'm such a faker sitting here at emil's desk (that he still hasn't sat at) in the geology department. full of salad at 6kr per 100g. tanked on coffee and a lack of sleep. when someone asks me what i'm reading i don't really know how to answer. not when they work for a NGO in palestine and north iraq.

yeah but can you play guitar like a ravenous beast eating its young? nor can i, but at least i'm trying. if i fuck up it's because i'm getting too good at imagining my fingers as tentacles. it would be ok but it's not my guitar. i feel so dirty.

coffee, it's a filthy drug.

language class last night, i was trying to explain to a czech woman the difference between use and abuse of coffee. using coffee is when you drink it to wake up. coffee in the evening or when you get out of bed. when you need it. the regular habitual consumption that dulls it to the point of being mundane. and it's pathetic. it gives you the runs. no. coffee should be a tool. like an emergency flare, used only when you need it. and then aim for the face, triple espresso or nothing. if you're not going to abuse coffee then you should be drinking tea.

i wish i was drinking tea right now.

and about the whiskey, what i'm actually talking about is only a single glass. so don't start worrying about my drinking habits.

anyway, it's time for the friday bar.

05.02.2009: all i'd written was "it's snowing oh so gently", which is just useless. it evokes nothing of the whiskey drinking by the fire, which is where i wanted to be. so what's the point? and we don't even have an open fire. the best i could rustle up for you is a bin fire in christiania - a romanticised image that'd hold true until someone realised you were drinking 16 year old bushmills. or worse, 18 year talisker. those are the options in this apartment, two whiskies with a combined age of 34. and what it says about us is a total lie. but nevermind. it's damn cold anyway and the pretty snow has stopped.

i had to write a to-do list for today. all those stupid little things that never get done. what i'm doing now isn't one of them. but we bought oats and posted an angry to letter to symington's and collected a boot from the cobbler. i pulled the front of our letterbox off the door. came up with some riffs. ate lunch. did my homework.

i've been quiet. i don't know. we've been sleeping badly. julie's had a horrendous cough and the upshot of this is fairly obvious. the other day we didn't even get out of bed until midday. and she never stays in bed that late.

we've been clearing out. doing our spring cleaning early. we even made 100kr by selling a nice set of books that we'd found many months ago, when we wanted to initiate a book swap in the court yard.

pause to eat an avocado. what a great word.

in the last forty eight hours i've completey devoured 'fear and loathing in las vegas'. to think i've been savouring it all these years just to blow it in two days. now we're going to watch the film. and afterwards i'm going to fucking rampage.

let's see what country we end up in.

so, where did that quart of whisky go?

31.01.2009: this morning feels like a brighton summer morning. which is completely inexplicable. but it's true.

the night before, just as we're leaving the bar, this young guy comes up to me and asks me what regiment i'm in. his friend's standing behind him and they're both looking pretty sharp. army boys, proud and serious all the way. i'm wearing my UN army shirt, complete with badges and stripes, and i know he must be fucking with me. because just look at me, i'm so far from looking like i have ever been or ever could be in the army. nevermind a sergeant. and his question, did he think that i might actually be trying to pretend to be in the army? i'm not that shade of asshole either. i tell him i just found the shirt and he tells me it's illegal to wear rank insignias. he said he's army police too, but he's not going to do anything about it. i guess that's nice enough of him. i could tell he wanted me to take them off right there, but instead i finished putting my outdoor clothes on and promise to deal with it later, thanking him for his information. his expression was one of mild disbelief, that i was joking around on the edge of an abyss, not at all realising what i was fucking with. but nevermind.

at the next bar i took them off and turned them inside out. is that good enough for you?

and i must confess i had a very non-vegan day.

back to today. in the evening we have a household dinner. i make another pie (the orange loaf mould was a great christmas present) and julie bakes amazing cookies. halfway through dinner the power goes out - the washing machine finally trying to kill us. so we eat by candlelight, something everyone should do more often. then we settle down to a film.

slumdog millionaire. it deserved what it got. go and see it. and when i'm less tired i might comment on "slum voyeurism". two quotes (both from indians) that i'm trying to deal - "it is indian at its core and western in its technical flourish" and "the west loves to see us as a wasteland, filled with horror stories of exploitation and degradation". all criticisms valid, but i do think it's an honest cultural collaboration (akin to grant morrisons' vimanarama), rather than an exploitation/misrepresentation of indian culture for western benefit. this is what i'm hoping, but of course what do i know? i haven't read vikas swarup's book or even been to india. more importantly i'm not indian, and i'm clearly the film's target audience, so i'm biased in ways i can't begin to understand. but ultimately, whatever the film is trying to be, it made me download a good few gigs of bollywood. and that's for the win.

30.01.2009: here's me back at university. if not for just the one day. though at this speed it'll take me several. i'm reading kenneth's thesis. this is what i bring to my circle of friends (there's nothing circular about friend networks, just ask mark zuckerberg), english proof reading. it's a nice new office he has here, open plan, great view over the canteen. quiet and calm. and the canteen does really good food.

spirals on the surface of my coffee. i'm picturing tiny pirate ships and miniscule colossal squids. but soon the chaos has subsided and there's nothing but a murky expanse. entropy on a scale i can deal with. still, i miss the squids. and the instant coffee is weird with the even weirder boiled sweets i've been supplied with.

ask me about global value chains, i dare you.

this morning i was told off cycling through the park. twice. what is wrong with people? i don't know, maybe i'm just an asshole. because i think i can cycle anywhere. but why exactly can't i cycle through the park? a park devoid of anyone but two self important municipal representatives who have it in for me and my bike.

even further back, i'm tormented by flashing orange lights. until march. all last night there was a work van parked outside our window with it's hazard lights flashing. all morning and all day. all month.

28.01.2009: the big news in denmark right now is a cop who was caught on video calling a pro-palestine demonstrater a "perker" (paki). it should be big news, constitutionalised racism present in the police force shouldn't be ignored. but three days later and all everyone is discussing is whether it was "perker" or "perle" (pearl) that he said. apparently this makes a difference, whether he used actual racial slur or wordplay on a racial slur. apparently it changes his intention, altering the fact that he's a racist cop asshole. so if he said "perle", which he clearly didn't because it's too ridiculous, i guess it makes him just an asshole cop, and that's something that society can accept. it's typical media spin, rather than dealing with the intrinsic racism and forcing the powers-that-apparently-be to do something about it, they're bringing in language experts to discuss exactly what it was he said, as if it matters. i'm not asking for the guy to be fired, we all know what all cops are, and you can't fire all of the bastards, it'd just be 'nice' if the problem was properly addressed, not turned into the farce it's become.

there's something askew deep inside my back. it's nothing major. nothing a good car crash wouldn't fix. a few minutes on the rack. but i can feel it like a badly placed nail in cheap piece of wood. two cogs in a vast machine and their teeth don't quite match up.

so what i do is lug a heavy guitar around town all day (actually it's the case that is heavy). all in the name of rocking out. in the name of ska. and the exercise is all good i'm sure. i just wish i could encourage the palm mute calluses in a less painful way. but the oitonomous is coming along nicely. harder faster scooter, apparently. it's fascinating to see everyone adapt and develop so quickly. and amongst the layers of parodys we might even develop a sound, something to go along with our image (think punk meets the village people). all very silly.

the book i borrowed from the library today (the gum theif) is a copy signed by douglas coupland. what library has signed books?

26.01.2009: the bbc are refusing to air an emergency charity appeal for gaza (so are sky). i like the bbc's reasoning. they're not wrong about needing to remain impartial - it's something i strongly agree with. they're just wrong in a different way. how is it impartial when you run a charity appeal for one group of people in need but not another? also, balanced and objective reporting is one thing, but it's far from a balanced situation. it's not "picking sides" when one of those sides is in dire need of aid and the other isn't. an emergency charity appeal isn't about being impartial, it's not a report, it's about directing aid where it's urgently required to save lives. maybe the content of the two minute charity appeal is too biased, maybe it rants on about the terrorist acts of the israeli state and likens the israelis to hitler. you never know. but state the facts - people are dying in gaza and they need aid. partiality not necessary.

in the book i'm reading i keep finding little notes someone has scribbled in orange crayon across the top of the page. they way they're written, it's just strange to find it in a library book:

nordisch hobel deine sanftmutige bute
habe dich sicher in meiner seele ich trag dich bei mir bis der varhang foillet
du hast i eden raum mit sonne geflutet

my coding doesn't let me do umlauts. sorry.

but do go and sign the drunken butterfly guestbook. it would be really nice of you. especially if you already said you would but haven't.

i feel like i'm getting a lot done. replying to emails, getting work moving along again, sorting out tax etc. hopefully. this is good.

25.01.2009: i'm trying not to get too excited or hopeful about the world's new american president. after all, he's the president, he's a person who wanted to be president. but yet, his first three days have been really interesting. maybe it's easy to impress when following in the footsteps of that fucking gimp bush, but making moves on stem cell research and guantanamo bay so quickly is amazing. having actual scientists in the whitehouse is nice too.

it's the line between naivety and cynicism. i don't know.

but what have i been up to? last night julie went to see oasis, emil went the cinema, alex went to see a friend and so i went over to kenneth's place (the other k k house). so that was nice. they made omlette, sided with salad and huge dollops of homemade hummus, but i just had a single carrot on my plate. i wish i'd had my camera. i'd already eaten - my first (and very succesful) attempt at thai curry. then drinking beer that may or may not have been made with coffee beans collected from mule dung. i missed the last bus, and with over half an hour wait until the night bus decided to walk it home, meeting up with julie at isola. it was a good night in, but at someone else's apartment. i heard they kept going until gone 7am. i'm not sure if i missed out on that or not. or something.

friday we ate at the ethiopian restaurant (the only one in town) and it's still good. we walked home all the way from there too, stopping off at a strange posh-esque cafe bar with nice use of glass and mirrors. and nice strawberry and elderflower smoothies. but totally not our kind of place. most places were people come in wearing fur aren't.

going back a few more days i totally nailed the baba ganoush. using tahini really is the trick. i guess we've been quite cultural in our eating recently. i was going to write "ethnic", but what the fuck does that mean?

i also feel like we've been shopping a lot. although i haven't really bought anything exciting for me. apart from a bar of soap. i really wanted that white chocolate with licourice, but i'm currently non-dairy, so it was out (i was considering buying it but not eating it until i'm having a "cheese eating break", but how little sense does that make?). we bought us a shiny new red fire extinguisher that i'm very proud of (pride? i don't know) and i painted a black board on our kitchen door.

completed 'cave story', 'within a deep forest' and 'a brave new world revisted'. visited the newly renovated library, liked it a lot, borrowed 'kafka on the shore'. now i'm just waiting to find out whether 'the golden compass' is in english or danish (i'm hoping english, because of the title, but that isn't the english title).

i've generally been feeling like i'm coming down with something, but i haven't. and then my back went and fucked up this morning in the bathroom. but nevermind, it'll be ok hopefully.

now i've got "let the sunshine in" in my head. and i can't really be bothered with any of this. 25th of january, the date rings a bell.

anybody want me to make them a website?

21.01.2009: i really do fucking hate the IFPI. the two largest ISPs in denmark are now blocking the pirate bay, one because the IFPI took them to court (currently under appeal) and the other because they're spineless bums who don't care about their customers. we've been here before, why are we here again? we're considering contacting TDC to tell them we're changing our ISP to one who will stand up for our rights, in court if necessary, and not back down like the pathetic shits that they are.

i thought they'd implemented a simple DNS block, but using openDNS doesn't seem to be helping. it looks like they're a bit more serious this time. bur it's about time i installed tor properly anyway (for a quick fix you could just use any old proxy server, i personally quite like anonymouse because it has a googletoolbar button, although it's nowhere near as hardcore as tor).

china, kuwait and denmark. strange list to belong in isn't it?

topic change. i was interested to see if anyone had analysed the use of black presidents in pop culture and the effectiveness of it in realizing a black president. but all i could find was this list. nevermind.

and at amager centre you can buy a pink toolbox full of pink tools. so you can be just like that woman on extreme house makeover (or whatever that stupid programme is called). also, the fire alarms we bought there have a cardboard backing featuring a delightful photograph of a 1950 housewife. which makes about as much sense.

there's some great photos sets over on you should check out their year 2008 in photographs and their greek riot photoset. fantastic.

18.01.2009: an open letter to symingtons:

Dear Symingtons,

I have recently discovered that when you purchased Direct Foods last year you scrapped Sosmix in favour of Granose "meat-free sausage mix", an almost identical product in every way except for its use of dairy products. Unfortunately, as it is no longer Vegan, many of your previously loyal customers can no longer use it. I grew up with Sosmix, there was always a box of it in our pantry and we used it on a regular basis. Now that I can't I'm extremely disappointed. Every christmas we'd make Sosmix rolls (way too many Sosmix rolls), and this christmas was the first time without.

Since the new and old products are so similar, I can only presume that by using milk you've managed to reduce your production costs by an amount you consider more important to you than your vegan customers (at least those of them who will notice the change). This saddens me deeply and I hope it is not the case.

When Mars started using calf rennet in their chocolate the outcry made them realise what a ridiculous decision it was and they reversed it. Hopefully you can do the same.

I have already signed the petition I found at, but since I feel so strongly about your product I am compelled to write to you as well.

Yours Sincerely,
Laurence Ashmore

i missed out the bit about corporations being scum and how they can stick their "convenient to prepare" meals up their arse. but the whole thing is so obscene it pisses me off. so if you can suspend your disbelief maybe you could sign the petition too? that would be lovely. i can't wait for inevitable stupid comments from their PR department. although it can't possibly be as amazing as mars's comment - "a less strict vegetarian should enjoy our chocolate". horrifically offensive, but it's given strength by you "vegetarians" who eat gelatine or cheese containing calf rennet (parmasan, etc), a byproduct of veal production. don't get me started on fish.

yesterday we made vegan pie. and it was great. especially considering it being the first pie i ever made. first proper pie with pastry and everything. it was a kind of mushroom and potato pie with a layer of baked beans (a tribute to richard, of course). now i want to make more pies. but i'm settling on a carrot cake.

and my new favourite thing is raw broccoli florets dipped in humus.

17.01.2009: last night we finally got around to watching 'battle in seattle' (i was going to link to it, but already if you search for information on the seattle protests all you get is the film). it might work as a simple introduction to the 1999 WTO protest, but why watch something based on real events (i wont called it dramatization, it was quite dramatic in reality) when you can watch an actual documentary?

there is plenty wrong with this film. there are some serious representational issues, and i thought it was far too emotionally manipulative, but in general it gives fair portrayals of most of the major players. too fair in some cases, like justifying police violence through unfortunate circumstance (did all the violent cops lose a baby that day?). officials are given the benefit of the doubt, suggesting they were forced by the situation to make the choices they made. and there is little analysis or critique on general police practice, if anything the film suggests more policing to begin with would have made the situation better.

considering the film is not a documentary they do cram a large amount of details in their (some more subtle than others). between the stereotyping and sympathizing there were actually a lot of issues covered. the anarchists are laughably unrepresented, but even their tiny one minute cameo covers many good points, even if it is painfully superficial (and the situation is totally unrealistic, a single anarchist on his own?). for the whole film the black bloc is left completely in the background, like some weird evil mysterious force disrupting everything. but nevermind that, they have their own films and those are much better. center stage.

so don't forget to watch breaking the spell (or if you want it on dvd). crimthinc also have good pamphlet directed at the film. you might also want to check out the real battle in seattle website.

i had clever things to say about the film i'm sure. but nevermind. it's best i point you towards the good material and you get on with it.

16.01.2009: it's funny because i wasn't even going to come into fisk today. for some reason i was on a "let's volunteer as much as possible and be really awesome" trip. and now it's my third shift this month alone. but i am rocking it. ok, i've only had two customers, but i did open up all on my own, fixing the mistake i made with the till (actually i bodged it, i may have caused more problems than i solved). the lights are all on, the music is playing. coffee is brewed, buns are cooking. and they look awesome too.

shame the plumber hasn't phoned like he said he would (typical) and the big delivery has been cancelled too. nevermind. but am i supposed to not use the dish washer or what? one never knows.

i'm not used to being up this early. it's a drag but it's fun. i can drink as much espresso as i want. until i can't focus or stand still. but i shouldn't complain about being tired. i woke up some time gone 6am and julie still hadn't returned from uni. i called her and they were just finishing up the final edits on their group project. students..

i wonder what i'm forgetting. i just wish i'd brough my own CDs today. if i'd thought for one second that i'd be on my own i would have. also now i have the problem of needing a long break in the toilet.

and the plumber still hasn't phoned, but at least now i've realised it's the washing machine that's broken, not the dishwasher.

maybe i shouldn't stand here talking to myself like this.

i just sold a fur coat for 1000kr. except it was on sale. i hate these fucking people who come in all covered in animal skin, it's disgusting. and that we even sell fur. but it's a charity shop and what are we to do if people donate fur and people buy fur? throw that potential money away? it's a strange clash of ethics, but the animal's already slaughtered and been through the system. we can only make the most of it now, can we not?

my danish is going well today. and i've managed to completely empty my inbox. from over 300 emails to 1 (and that one is from me). i feel terrible because some of those emails i should have replied to months and months ago. last summer. the christmas before. my dad once told me about his chinese business contacts, that if they don't respond to an email within a couple of days they decide that it couldn't have been important and never reply. i think there's a strange truth in there somewhere. but yeah, anyway.

i'm starting to lose focus.

this place has become much better since i realised the cookies are vegan.

were not wasting paper [or grammar]
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