news [archive 45]

10.01.2015: we are not yet saved.

so it looks like has been saved again (by sweden, no less), despite it's apparent permadeath.

let's have a parade, etc.

28.02.2013: ok, @emoware is now a 'real' thing. i resisted for a long time, for all the right and wrong reasons, and i finally gave in for some of them too (blame the fucking phone). so, hit me up. i'm having issues with actually using it, i can't write a first tweet because it makes no sense for me to do so. i have nothing to say to the void. i got all chicken/egg over myself.

maybe i should just go and delete my account.

26.02.2013: so, marika has started taken herself to bed. she's learnt when it's bedtime and she gets annoyed with us if we don't put her to sleep. this started a couple of weeks ago after she'd had an early bath due to some accident or other. we had her running around in her pajamas for about half an hour, jumping around on the sofa, but mostly just complaining a lot. we'd all been very exhausted, dealing with the worse flu that i can remember having (of course, when you can stay in bed the whole time and get waited on by tomato soup carrying angels is obviously not so bad), so when she started getting really upset in the corridor i thought it was just her falling over again or something. but when i went to her she took me hand and led me into the bedroom, then stood patiently besides her bed waiting for me to put her in. she lay straight down and went to sleep. it was the (what do they call it?) darndest thing. and i guess it shows you how much she likes her routines. it's just so nice that she knows she's tired and it's bed time and she actually wants to go to sleep. i was giggling about this for hours afterwards (actually much longer, but i'm already gushing too much)

anyway, it made me think that she's had a lot of really interesting developments recently and i've not really been keeping track. plus, she's starting vuggestue soon (nursery? although it's hard to translate because it's not something you really have in england), so i though i'd try to document some of it.

what i've been most impressed about is how she's learnt to use us as tools. if she's having trouble completing a task (pushing pegs down, etc) she'll grab my hand and pull it over to make it do the job instead. the other night she was even dragging us around and giving us hiding places so she could play a rather silly version of hide and seek (she go out the room, close and open the door, then come and find us). there's another side to this as well, and that's her wanting to show us things. she has several books that contain textures (furry animals, tyre treads, etc) and recently she started grabbing our fingers to rub over the interesting areas of the pages. we'd be doing it to her for weeks, i guess it's only natural that she'd do it back, right?

she's also very good at sharing her food, although mainly just raisins. i personally think sharing food is important, but teaching it to marika was mainly a way to reduce the number of raisins she was eating and to introduce some form of light discipline (if she's doesn't go find mamma in the next room and give her a raisin there will be no more raisins, etc). it's just so sweet how much she insists on giving raisins to other people now.

the cutest thing she's done is 'hug' herself in the mirror when we've asked her if "marika gets marika kos?". 'marika kos' is when she rests her head against your head, and it's her basic method of showing affection. she started doing it at the dinner/breakfast table a long time ago. i was just quite surprised that she recognised herself in the mirror as being herself and could use the mirror to give herself 'marika kos'.

thinking about it now, she's quite good at stroking our head too, but mostly that just ends in hitting.

learning though, it really is incredible isn't it?

04.02.2013: a couple of weeks ago our TV signal got updated to something new and digital, something our TV couldn't at all deal with. but it was no problem, we just threw the TV out, back where we'd found it. then our internet connection went down for almost a week. and in the middle of that my phone got cut off. it was all very weird, suddenly being plunged into this connectionless void. what was weird was that it felt novel, which it shouldn't.

at least i can get wifi on the buses here.

in other news, my computer is sad that i don't spend time with it anymore. since i've had my new phone i have little reason to casually switch it on. i might think "hey, let's organise some photos", but the effort of booting up is just too much. and before people start saying all the predictable stuff like "i told you apple was so good" - i've had my fair share of crashing and fuckups. it's a beautiful little machine but it's not perfect.

i'd actually like to gush a little bit about the quality of the map, especially in 3D, but i'm no doubt way behind on this one so will keep the very strange experience of tracking myself on the bus to myself. it all went a bit generation A. and i thought being thrown into the future would hurt more, but it didn't. i actually remember discussing computerised maps with my dad when i was rather small, and how mind boggling it would be if you could have a globe and then zoom all the way in to look at the streets, but i never really thought it could be quite this good. how could you?

btw, if you have a spare 300dkk, i can highly recommend you invest in a pulse eco shower, and that's despite the ugliness of their website (um, no that is not a sponsored link). alternatively you could pick up a vcube7 from bog&ide, before they realise they've priced it way too cheap.

16.01.2013: i'm quite confident that all lost toys have now been found. green pin man had been missing for months, i even put out a bulletin asking if anyone had seen him. i gave up looking, he'd turn up eventually, and then he did, in my running shoe. at the time i thought red pin man was also missing, but he was just misplaced in the wrong toy box. red ring was under the bathroom cupboard. and last but not least, red rabbit was found this morning hiding under kitchen doorframe. pesky rabbit.

so that is that. for now.

is marika old enough for the tripti ensemble crew? maybe not. freak juice, yeah.

anyway, in seemingly random move on the part of my employer i'm now a confused owner of an iphone5. it's quite the jump from my humble and trust nokia 1200, which was the only phone i've enjoyed having since my 3330, which must have lasted me at least five years or something, and whose sim card i still use when not in denmark (yep, same number still). there were two phones in between but i can't remember what they were. one of them had a colour screen though, and it might even have had a camera! gosh.

so far the iphone is just a pretty slab of shiny and mat black (no sim). but at least i don't feel so technologically stunted anymore. i mean, who wants to find themselves dropped behind and with no idea about all that new fangled fangly shit? i don't care about gadgets or twitter, i like to keep my communications lo-fi, but there's always been a fear of suddenly not being able to catch up. i'm a parent now, and everyone knows parents don't understand the next generations tech, right?

i swear all night i could hear chanting in the background, "gooble goble gooble goble, one of us, one of us".

01.01.2013: that was exactly what doctor who needs, another character that gets killed in every episode.

anyway, i hate to go all bah humbug or whatever, but i think new years eve is rapidly becoming my least favourite day of the year. i'm also hating fireworks. and these two things are obviously inextricably linked.

we went to bed at about 22:00, and the non-stop barrage had already been going on for two hours. amazingly marika slept through all of it and didn't wake up until 3am once it had finally quietened down. which is incredible because she hasn't been sleeping at all for the last three weeks. none of us have. it's been dreadful.

our christmas peaked too early this year, what with the christmas family day at the norwegian church and the office christmas party and all that. i christmased out. christmas was old before it even started. please, no more christmasses. it's just been illness after sickness after infection, we are going through all of it.

anyway, back to last night. it took me over an hour to fall asleep, and then i woke up again at about quarter past the new year, probably when the crackle-bang-boom reached its peak outside our window. some of those booms were just a bit too much. everywhere you could see were people setting off fireworks. explosions hitting the windows of the top-most apartments, all the streets full of smoke. it just seemed a little too gratuitous. and i'm sure i say that every year, but don't you people have better things to waste your money on?

but at least marika was sleeping.

so, request for the new year - more sleep. maybe more pizza.

26.12.2012: i've been doing quite well with my cubes recently, in terms of solving them and not buying them (or at least i was until this morning, whoops). the 4x4x6 is solved, as is the mixup plus, the constrained 180 cube, the square-2, and the camouflage cube, which has become my favourite puzzle. here's a picture of it in all its confusing glory:

even when playing with it you can't quite work out what it is. and when you do (spoiler: it's a bandaged/fused 4x4x4 with the non-bandaged pieces extended to make it a symmetrical 3x3x3) it still doesn't make much sense. it is sickness. witeden have really been rocking the new cube designs over the last half year. someone somewhere discovered a new core mechanism and they've run with it like crazy.

i first solved the constrained cube in ingolf's cafe when we were first introducing marika to the idea of daycare (dad, croissant and latte, rubik's cube. because i'm a hipster or what? my braces are ironic. not likely). in retrospect it's not that difficult to solve. frustrating more than anything. but it's fun when you get the hang of it. i thought about getting the constrained 90 cube (or 'quater cube'), but that would be too difficult. i've still not scrambled the latch cube. bloody thing.

but some of those puzzles have taken me ages, working with them on and off for months. i remember taking my new mixup plus cube to the emergency ward when i got hogweed burnt, thinking maybe i could solve it whilst waiting. since then it's mostly been sitting on the shelf with the centers shuffled in an awkward permutation. the center permutation problem was solved one sleepless night, lying in bed going through the numbers and edge replacements in my head. i messed it up in the morning, too groggy to keep track of the pieces, but the theory was solid.

it was a similar story with the 4x4x6, i got stuck pairing the edge pieces together and couldn't reduce it to a 4x4x4 (which then needs reducing to a 3x3x3). i was sitting outside in the courtyard with it for almost an hour whilst marika slept and all these kids were running round having a birthday party or something. this one girl came up to me and told me it looked rather complicated, and that i should start with something simpler, like a normal sized 4x4x4. she caught me off guard, who is this six year old telling me what rubik's cube i should be playing with? ja men, jeg kan godt klar den, tak. but the thought took root, and maybe she was right, so again it sat on the shelf for months.

see, these cubes are investments. whole seasons of entertainment. if anyone is keeping count.

i should also admit that this whole post was just so i could post that photo. the jumble was too much to keep to myself.

23.12.2012: all i want for christmas is.. to be able to play teleglitch uninterupted for a couple of hours and survive beyond level 3. how is that everyone else finds it so much easier than me? are you ignoring or not finding the secret area with the boss (i'm presuming it's 'secret' since i had to blow through walls to get there and i'd already found the teleporter)?

i had to throw out downfall because too many pieces were missing. i much prefered the old 'wall' design anyway, the new version is tacky, and zany is not my cup of tea. point was- parents, clear up properly after your kids when they play with other people's stupid games. else next i'm round your house i will steal keys from your keyboard, random USB cables, you phone charger, all your nice forks. y'know, something like that. the lightbulb from your fridge (wait, don't tell me, fridges don't have lights in anymore, they're illuminated via your ipad or something?).

been listening to my entire mp3s collection on random whilst doing pre-christmas cleaning (xmas is celebrated on the 24th in scandinavia, btw, and i have no idea what the 25th is supposed to be about). biggest waste of a babysitter ever, but anyway. almost every song that comes on makes me say "wow this band is amazing". i clearly don't listen to music enough anymore. i mean, even the obvious stuff like fugazi and tool. bud powell, mates of state, black ox orkestar, iliketrains, mansun, etc.

coffee dehydration.

and i messed up the chestnuts. or jesus did, or ica, i don't know. so now christmas is ruined. and i forgot the cranberry sauce too.

so happy something or other.

21.12.2012: you know barbelith is dead when it's the 21st december 2012 and no one has posted all year.

the end of the world show you've all been waiting for. so much media, but unfortunately no Grant Morrison and no Alan Moore. no Jaz Coleman. no Czeslaw Milosz, who nailed it. no mention of how the world's end is just another death card. no one daring to embarrass themselves talking about timewave zero (Terrence McKenna's prediction was based on the bombing of hiroshima, btw, and calculated as november 16th 2012). no discussion comparing our assimilation into the internet's growing complexity and the Pierre Teilhard de Chardin's beautiful noosphere (he coined the word in 1922). no accelerating all the way through time to the spontaneous eruption of the Boltzmann brain. actually, i've been meaning to write about Anonymous being an emergent consciousness, but i'm not sure i can pull it off.

citation needed? the most significantly terrifying wiki page - timeline of the far future. "on this timescale all matter is liquid", still being the obvious quote.

i guess we missed the trick. or maybe just the party. something somewhere in the world changed, and it'll never be the same again. blah blah blah.

11.12.2012: here are a few thoughts on facebook and the coming eschaton, and why i still find myself defending google and hating facebook. and to ruin the plot i'll jump straight to my main point, which is that no matter how far google has come, or how bad it could become, it started with a nobel aim that benefits humanity (to use horrible grandiose terms, just a shortcut for sounding dramatic when talking about social networks). google is making our collective information accessible - it aids in the active process of knowledge acquisition.

facebook on other hand has only even been about popularity, there is no social enrichment, it is fundamentally sterile. it can never be good. it can claim to connect people, but all facebook offers is a massive communications platform that makes relationships more and more passive.

these days i talk to less of my friend because i don't need to, i know what they're doing without asking. maybe i'm thinking about them all time, laughing at their jokes, but they have no idea i'm there. we're all a party of one.

as far as information goes, facebook is its own knowledge acquisition, for its own sake. it is selfish. so what i'm basically saying is that zuckerburg is the anti-christ and he's leading us all to hell, yeah?

to end on a positive note, teleglitch is awesome amazing brilliant. i bought the full game after only playing the demo for twenty minutes, and i may be biased because i think rogue-likes are the ultimate artform and the pinnacle of game design, and because doom-rl is the best game ever, but it really is the best xmas present you could buy yourself. unfortunately i still haven't had a chance to get into it properly. i'd love to complain about that, but being a father is too awesome.

08.12.2012: my head is full of noise this morning. like it always used to be when i was more proficient at writing on my website and i could filter it all into a semi-coherent (remembering that word took hours) stream of conscious. back when i didn't care that all the small inconsequentials were completely uninteresting and self-censorship was still an unknown concept.

like, i'm wondering why i have to go to malmo to get deep-fried haloumi in my falafel, and why i even ordered the falafel when they have two different vege burgers. i didn't even seek this place out, it's just another random fastfood joint. businesss as usual in sweden, vegan friendly fish and chips.

or, why do people have zips up the middle of their hoods? or, something about raw onion and whether nuts should float? or, when did people stop using bars of soap? i can't remember the last time i stayed over at someone's house and they had a soap. or, why is the guy infront of me in the moshpit updating his facebook page? i should knock him down and break his phone, right? i went to your concert and i didn't feel anything.

but i forgot my toothbrush and slept on the floor. it was nice, the fridge singing to me in sweet guttural tones. and refused were brutal. you'd never guess they'd not been playing together for ten years. a decade apart and they're record perfect. scandinavians age well (or no, they were actually really young back in the nineties). the list of bands i need to see just went down by a quarter (quick estimate). also, who runs a club and puts the toilet, cloakroom, and merch stand all in the same corner?

earlier in the evening i was crashing a political party xmas party. they had a vegetarian who wasn't present so i inherited her food, and i was thinking "this was meant to be", until it arrived and it was 98% fish. the only vegetable in sight was a slice of lettuce. there was a chocolate chew and tainted egg. also an orange, but oranges are everywhere. a meal of fish, who even eats like that? you see, i completely contradicted my previous non-statement about malmo being heaven for the starving danish vegetarians.

coming up soon/never: why i can't stop thinking about glee, how i realised there can be no such thing as good pornography (clue, etymology), and why facebook is bringing around the end of the world.

25.11.2012: it went kind of dead around here, what? all everything is now about someone else's life, there is no time to talk about my favorite sandwich or the weird dream i had three nights ago. i saw a film and it was really good, but now the babysitter has gone home and i don't really have time to tell you about it because it's almost 22:00 and i need to go to bed. 'free time' means collapsing on the sofa with a half-solved rubik's cube.

my other problem is that i like my job too much. what was once prime time coffee-drinking blog-writing is now spent kicking around XML, shooting JSON strings through scrambled proxies. server response headers in all directions. the net is vast and infinite (countably infinite? or are we talking more literal infinity? is that something that even makes sense?)

so proper posts never get finished. ideas come and go, but the internet has changed y'know. nothing is novel. everything is just repetition. all you can do is contribute to trending stats. just another trackback, hashtag, slash dot dot dot.. so much of everything is embarrassing, egotistical, and/or redundant. it's kind of like just giving up and letting the machine take over. after all, isn't the internet about to wake up? don't we have like, twenty something days until the whole thing blinks itself into being and declares the age of the digital noosphere begun? skynet is everyone, didn't you know? and it's more friendly than stupid movies and youtube comments would let you believe.

04.11.2012: the first quote we were given for changing our locks was 3400DKK (about 450euros), which was a bit like being shot in the face by an air vortex cannon whilst falling off a cliff. the thing that makes everything in the world makes sense just upped and left. took all my money with it. and on top of everything else i'd been through that day, also running off and joining the circus was starting to look like a good option.

the other quotes weren't so outrageous (as in rage producing, also see 'guy who put down our floor'), and in the end it only cost 1100DKK. only. that's the price you pay for the 0.0001% chance that the person who found your wallet would actually come and try the key in the lock. or 'peace of mind', i guess people call it.

it couldn't have been more than hour after the new locks had been fitted that the woman who had actually found my wallet called julie's mobile. i'm a little unsure exactly how she traced a line from me to her and then found her number, but i guess i'm happy for it. she'd emailed me of course, apparently at 15:20, before i'd even realised that my wallet contained both my keys and ID card (with address), but for some reason the email didn't arrive in time either.

shit happens. cards get cancelled. money gets lost. no worries. i can't feel annoyed at my misfortune for very long, i know people dealing with far bigger shit happenings, me whining about this is almost offensive.

in future i'll have my telephone number very visible inside my wallet. i'll not carry around ID with my address on. and i'll do some other exciting stuff too. exciting stuff is cool, seriously.

anyway. there was an interesting article in the paper this morning, they'd asked everyone in the danish parliment who they would vote for in the american election and summarised the results by party. apart from the obvious two (which you'd guess if you know anything about danish politics) Obama had 100% of the votes. funnily enough, 71% of Dansk Folkeparti (the danish BNP, except they get a worryingly large number of votes because they're not holocaust deniers) would vote for Romney. and since this is likely the only time i will mention the election i'll link to the horrifying video of Romney's deathly smile (and americans wonder why the rest of the world hates them so much?). abortion doesn't kill babies, romney's sneer does. i just can't shake the image. the guy doesn't give a fuck about anything. if he wins the election i'm leaving the country.

and my favourite quote, "Chill out ladies. Your rape baby could turn out to be the Son of God. It's happened before."

um, "if you have a vagina and you vote for Romney you deserve a penis"?

nothing like a good election to remind me how much i hate hate Ann Coulter (heh, i double typo'd hate, cos i hate her so much).

30.10.2012: nothing ruins something you've written more than someone reading it out loud. but nevermind, because i've been in bed for three days and i'm really quite unhappy about it. not least because i actually sat through the whole of Cosmopolis, which really is quite shit. how it even got 65% on rottontomatoes i have no idea (selected quotes from the 'good' reviews, "for one of the smartest films i've seen in a while, Cosmopolis is also one of the least outwardly enjoyable", "while Cosmopolis is mostly emotionless and a big letdown it isn't completely boring", well yes it is). way to make a bad day worse.

Tintin was better, but i was disappointed that there was no time travel.

or daleks.

Chronicle was also a bit crap, but at least it made me forget how much my teeth were hurting. that relentless vice-like ache that can't be ignored. it's what the soup craving is all about. but was heinz always so sweet? weird, nevermind.

i should have just watched Akira.

worst post ever. but i'm sick. leave me alone.

25.10.2012: everytime i'm in norway i'm completely awed by the environment up there. the nature is just incredible. it's like, living in a city you forget how beautiful the real world actually is. you forget the sky can have more than one colour, or how piercing a single colour can be. and it's not just throw-away beauty, it's deep and aching, every single light particle screaming for you attention. the world changes every ten minutes and it's like staring into a kaleidoscope (note to self, must buy one for marika).

what's worse, when watching a film with a particularly impressive scenery, the first thing you think is how good the special effects are..

or maybe the whole thing is just a lack of oxygen from being high up in the mountains. you never know.

some only slightly relevant photos:

many more photos for the privileged baby-followers are also available in the usual place (more coming soon).

so norway was good. we had the perfect cabin weather, surprise snow. and apart from the bus ride back to oslo everything was reasonably easy. easy doesn't make for good stories, but an inconsolable baby wailing relentlessly doesn't either. perhaps with enough hindsight all the vomit that followed might become amusing.

five minutes before our stop, in the brief gap between the flashes of orange from the tunnel lighting, suddenly my lap was full of glistening vomit. the poor girl had only just calmed down, and now she had puke in her eyes, all matted up in her hair, everywhere. and then came even more. it was just dreadful. banana and lasagne pooling into every crevice - the last time she ever has fizzy water on public transport. of course it was all fine in the end, once we reached our final destination and could hose her down. but wow, our first proper sickening. and the first time i've had the smell of vomit stuck in my nose, but not in the back of my throat.

moving swiftly on..

13.10.2012: all this week (until the 21st) we're in norway, just so you know. i don't have my phone but julie has hers - usual rules apply.


oh, and don't forget shuffler are supporting napoleon solo at KB18 3rd Nov.

09.10.2012: originally i was going to write a quick post about the image below, which features in some kind of order the dino cube, skewb, rex cube, master skewb, and face-turning octahedron:

these are all 4-axis combination puzzles, and what i've done there is highlight the equivalent pieces in each one to show how they are all related, their mechanical similarities, etc. it's a bit confusing with the octahedron at the end, because it's a completely different shape, but since it's face-turning like a standard rubik's cube is (and unlike the other puzzles that are corner-turning) it still has four axis.

but, what i just realised is how the pyraminx, the puzzle that i neglected to photo, fits into the picture as well. the pyraminx's six edge pieces (which are the only pieces that change position on that puzzle - yes, the pyraminx is that simple) move exactly the same as the pink/purple pieces in the picture above.

it's as if the pyraminx is exactly half of a skewb, with it's six dino cube style pieces 'disappeared' between the points of each skewb corner and the pyraminx's corners equating to the 'fixed' corners of a skewb. which is almost correct, but not quite.

this is going to take more explaining, because the more i learn about the skweb the more it confuses me. i've been able to solve one for years, but it was only recently (when playing with a void skewb, or holey skewb, or whatever) that i noticed the corners are split into two distinct groups - a 'fixed' group and a 'floating' group. a corner from one group is not interchangeable with a corner from the other group, because when you rotate a corner it's only the corners from the other group that move. furthermore, the corners in a group never move position relative to each other, only their rotation changes. this is easier to explain mechanically, since the 'fixed' group are literally fixed to the core. ping, suddenly the world makes sense, right?

so if you want to make a skewb from two pyraminx's you need to overlap them in a kind of 3D 'star of david' motif (you may need a klein bottle to complete this task). the corner aligning is quite simple, but what of the pyraminxs' twelve edge pieces and the skewb's centres? it turns out (maybe, i'm actually theorising a bit here) that it's actually the skewb centres that are equivalent to the pyraminx edges, as opposed to my initial thought of them equating to the dino cube pieces. an edge from each of our two pyraminxs overlap into a single skewb centre, and this also explains why they only have two orientations (a rubik's cube centre can have all four orientations, although you'd never really notice since all orientations look the same).

i guess this needs another diagram, although i'm not sure how much it'll help:

just for extra fun, the corner-turning octahedron (looking identical to the previous octahedron, but rather boring when you realize it's only a shape modification of a standard 3x3x3, and with no corners) also acts very similar to the pyraminx, but with four edge pieces in each rotation (um, and double the number of sides (um and three slices)). it solves almost exactly the same though, despite having 3-axis. so what do you get if you combine two of those? actually nevermind, i don't want to know. it can't be worse than the master skewb.

24.09.2012: look at us two down by the lake in our slippers watching the sunset. the end of a beautiful a markov chain, smiling the evening away.

unfortunately also the end of our first summer together - fordi the cold cometh, etc. the dark and the rain, and i'm surrounded by scaffolding all day every day. it's like living in a cave.

except this week i'm in vilnius. well, tuesday through friday. cheese curds, here we come. so don't bother trying to call me because my phone wont work.

other important news, i had a big rummage through all my clothes and found a pair of jeans i didn't know i had. that is the magic of recycling stations, or wherever else they actually came from. they're a perfect fit too, so i'm very happy now.

also, we were eating in morgenstedet the other night, probably the cosiest vegetarian cafe in denmark, and julie goes up to buy a slice of cake just as bob dylan sings "you can have your cake and eat it too". that was great. but, um.. nevermind.

i guess i had nothing to say after all.

15.09.2012: my hands are covered in five different colours of numerals. fonts all cut up and reduced to base symbolic curves. and they won't wash off. i blame the guy called Smaz, who is some kind of twisty puzzle ninja. and whilst reading about his time machine i discovered something amazing - these internet shops that i order puzzles from, they have IRL shops in Hong Kong. that was a disappointing reveal for you wasn't it? nevermind.

my time machine is cooler than yours.

i taught someone to eat with a spoon. and not make a mess. isn't that incredible?

one of marika's birthday presents was a wooden farm house with animal shaped holes in the wall and a roof that lifts up, making it easy to get the animals in and out. the other morning i found the whole house full to the brim with random blocks and tiles - her first secret stash. all those jigsaw puzzles she also received, all the pieces go straight into the farm house too. the katamari doesn't fit in though, unfortunately.

which reminds me, i keep seeing club mate crates all over copenhagen. but where the fuck is the actual club mate? please.

whiskey in the afternoon. bock in the evening.

so who wants to go/come to Hong Kong with me? it will be cool, i can promise.

09.09.2012: so, what you're saying is that we need someone to create a computer virus that acts as bittorrent client and randomly downloads copyrighted material onto everyone's computers? is that something that you could use kickstarter to raise funds for? interesting. and does it mean if i still get done for illegal downloads i can sue the morons who coded my weak-ass operating system?

anyway, i need to clear out my bookmarks tab, so it's link dump time:

have you ever wanted to be able to edit java in realtime in your browser? i lost more braincells playing with that than i did at the last office christmas party. i also crashed a lot of browsers.

then there's the self-printing game of life, which is obviously brilliant.

also colours, and here's a great read on colour perception and language (the second part is also essential).

more colours - here's a guy who can draw and took a lot of drugs. very pretty. slightly more educational that looking at spiderwebs.

you can come with all your best puns, but pointerpointer is the best crap website ever (this week).

um, and orwell vs huxley, which i was saving for a special occasion that never came.

08.09.2012: it's amazing what you can get done when you've got nothing to blog. and it's not even 11am.

01.09.2012: sometimes i wake up in the middle of the night and the apartment is completely silent. and the thought that there's a little girl sleeping in the next room is incomprehensible, that's she's as real as everything else and that she came from practically nothing. it's just incredible.

during the day it's business as usual. the apartment is a wreck of toys, the constant shuffle of knees over floorboards. sand and crumbs everywhere. like i can't remember it ever not being like this.

anyway, i am fresh today. maybe it was the early morning coffee, the autumn tingle, a full night's sleep, i don't know. but i am ready for loppen and the sun is shining.

26.08.2012: marika is sad today, because she knows that the coming rain means all of the slides in copenhagen will be wet. there will be no more special moments sitting in the shade of the tree ripping up the fallen leaves. wet sand may as well just be mud. and of course it has nothing to do with her teeth..

i just don't understand how she can be so adorable one moment, attempting to pull my teeth out whilst i'm trying to play her a lullaby, and then so hysterical the next. it's quite amazing. maybe teething also gives you incredibly horrific arm-flailing nightmares.

anyway. we played stengade on saturday, again supporting the mighty napolean solo. it'd been a long time since i've been there, and even longer since i played there. infact i don't think i'd been there since it closed down and reopened, but it's quickly shot back up to being one of my favourite venues. when i noticed there was a shower backstage and requested a towel i'd presumed they thought i was joking, but there it was next all my gear when i came off stage - a towel! drinking beer in the shower is still one of the best things. as for the actual important stuff, the sound was great (bonus points for a very polite soundman) and the so were the crowd. excellent service all round.

next week (this week?) we're playing loppen, which is definitely something of a milestone, or whatever you call it, in a band's career. also, it's a fundraising event organised by the ska convention people, which means we're guaranteed a place at their convention next year as well. all very exciting. and my fingers are crossed that they provide us with food from spiseloppen. but either way it's going to be an awesome night, people.

oh, and we a have new website as well -

19.08.2012: what is it about the scaffolding outside our apartment that makes it look like a toilet? trust me, there are way better places to take a shit. there's a couple of cars down the road for instance that wouldn't mind having a turd placed on them (i can give you the registration numbers if you like). i'm just a bit tired of dealing with human faeces outside our apartment (remember the mystery log on our neighbours door mat?). inside our apartment is fine though, marika has nothing to worry about.

in other good news, the scott pilgrim movie didn't ruin the books for me. or rather, michael cera, a poor casting in an otherwise perfectly cast movie, didn't ruin scott pilgrim for me. it's not that i dislike him, he just isn't scott pilgrim. scott pilgrim doesn't whine like he whines. he doesn't sigh so pathetically, he smiles bigger and more, he has crazy optimistic eyes and a much rounder head. scott pilgrim is cluess, not confused. anyway, i'm not saying that i could suggest anyone better, it just bothered me. but no more.

and continuing the theme of watching unpleasant movies (referring to "we need to talk about kevin" now, not scott pilgrim anymore), we watched martha marcy may marlene (no spoilers coming, relax). i know had something to say about this, because i started writing that sentence last week, but now i can't remember at all what it was.

right, yes. so, a number of people (hey, it's the internet, who knows or even cares anymore?) were complaining about the ambiguous ending, and that they were fed up with movies having pretentious non-closures or poorly timed endings (also see inception, no country for old men, etc). i just wanted to rant a little bit because that whole idea is rather annoying. mainly because, who are you to decide what the film is about, so that you comment on whether the ending was well placed or not? i think the point was well made, the final scene was spot on and in keeping with the movie's theme. where did the need to have everything tied up come from? every story contains stories, and is also contained in bigger stories. but it's the writer/director's fault when the story you wanted the end to isn't concluded? pfft. inception is something else entirely, but that whole discussion is so mind numbingly uninteresting i refuse to join in. get over it (clue: not even the main character gives a shit about the spinning top anymore).

anyway. baconnaise, check! maybe this can get the smell of shit out of my nose.

11.08.2012: it's like coming home to autumn. i'd say it's refreshing, but it's not. i need a jumper. and it doesn't help that are windows are covered over by a foggy tarp. but it's ok in the dark, or at least it will be when my luggage arrives (long and slightly boring story).

france has been nice to us. it has provided us with lost sun, swimmable water, and teeth. also sleeps on benches in the rain, and in hammocks. and of course croissants. also cermics, which is weird. we survived all the sneers at our baby's cries and farts, and we totally rocked the kayaks.

the marika that is now running around our apartment is a very different marika to the one that left last week. it's a whole new adventure for her. it's amazing how fast she develops.

anyway. i can't get anything done this morning. partly because i can't relax or end the holiday until my bag's unpacked (it's still a long story). but maybe i just can't be bothered. this rather long article about scientology isn't helping either

also, proof you weren't at rage against the machine's first gig.

31.07.2012: an official announcement (more of a clarification really) from Notch, the creator of minecraft, stated that technically all of the characters in minecraft are homosexual. this is both awesome and hilarious - minecraft is kind of gay. and i wonder how much of him saying so has to do with Anita Sarkeesian's plight (which isn't quite the right word, because i'm sure she's rocking it - and also her youtube channel is great, btw).

i'm impressed how Notch went out of his way to design both genders into each mob/character. as far as gender politics go i put it up there with dumbledore's homosexuality. no one is shouting about it, it ain't no thing, it's just how it is.

on a slightly related note (and i feel rude for bringing this up because it's someone else's personal business - it deserves no talk on the internet), did you know that the watchowski brothers aren't brothers anymore? i smiled all the way through the cloud atlas directors commentary. no further comment necessary.

so. by now i'm probably in france and wont be back in copenhagen until august 10th or thereabouts.

28.07.2012: and so it turns out all i really needed to is jump on the christiania bike and take my daughter to amager strandpark - first trip with daddy to the beach! i've been meaning to do it for a while now, but various circumstances (mainly bad weather) have gotten in the way. (there will be photos in the usual place.) a good swim in a lake also helps, especially after an intense hour knee deep in hogweed death. and a good classic icecream and latte. oh, and dinner at morgenstedet in christiania. sunsunsunsunsun.

anyway, we went to see batman. in brief, it was ok. i had seen the trailer too many times, and watching the film felt too much like watching the trailer with extra scenes stuck in between - i.e. "oh, that was the context of that scene". it's another film whose trailer is far too good for its own good (terrible sentence, but then it is only 6am - don't ask).

i wasn't going to write about it, as i wasn't going to write about prometheus, because everyone else is doing that far better and worse than i could. but i was lying in bed thinking about it and figured i could just get up and start breakfast early (um, incase you asked anyway?).

barely spoilers follow..

what was bothering me is that from several places, including the guardian, the film has been 'accused' of being right wing and/or anti occupy movement, and this confuses me a little bit because i didn't get that feeling at all (but then i'm also primed not to, probably). some of their points are fair, yes it does conflate extreme violence with the occupy movement (let's attack the stock exchange with uzis, etc), but that isn't enough, it's thin, and so what anyway? a quote from the article linked above:

it's tempting to read The Dark Knight Rises as an allegory for the attempts by the elite to rebuild their standing after the financial crisis - or at least to preserve the idea that there are good rich who, if suitably humbled, can save capitalism from its worst excesses.

and i'd buy that, batman is the implicit overly-rich uber-privileged capitalist saving the poor (and everyone else as well i suppose). and he does only kicks any ass when he's got no money left. but, he's not the hero of this movie. it may be named after him, but he is useless and annoying and the film loses a little something every time he appears (oh, this is a comic, i almost forgot). it would have been better if he'd just died at the beginning or not even been in it at all. the batman makes no sense in this context, and he looks and sounds ridiculous. the heroes of this movie are blake and selina - the orphan and the robin hood (pushing it a bit? unfortunately her character isn't fully developed enough to say), who are both struggling with their given circumstances and, um, rising? or something?

i'm not defending the film, it's just that Frank Miller would love for it to be right wing propaganda - his batman being the capitalist pig who'd be down at the occupy camps breaking legs and paralysing protesters whilst saving the cops from the bad smell. i really don't like that guy. if i had it my way batman would tear off his cape to use as a flag just to make the fucker cringe. on his off days bruce wayne would be down at the soup kitchen cleaning dishes.

another big-worded quote from the guardian:

The sustaining fantasy of Nolan's Batman films ... is that the excesses of finance capital can be curbed by a combination of philanthropy, off-the-books violence and symbolism. The Dark Knight at least exposed the duplicity and violence necessary to preserve the fictions in which conservatives want us to believe. But the new film demonises collective action against capital while asking us to put our hope and faith in a chastened rich.

i mean, really? nice try though.

anyway, some more random comments about the film that i feel need to be said. firstly, plot-wise it has more in common with Brian Wood's DMZ than any batman story i ever read. without giving it any credit it's almost shameless. then secondly, bane's voice isn't even the hardest to understand in the movie. i had more trouble understanding gordon and bruce. although this may be due to the excessive volume in the cinema. i had thought the phenomena of overly loud soundtracks and sound effects compared to the level of dialogue was exclusive to my laptop, but apparently not. sort your shit out holywood.

20.07.2012: everyone's waiting for a summer that is apparently never coming, but meanwhile there are beautiful days for the taking. yesterday had the perfect autumn morning, all fresh and hopeful for those that were up before 8am. we were down by the canal in search of new playgrounds. and everything was just so. even the filter coffee. it felt like walking through one of those memories of the good ol' days.

i think i can live with an extended spring. it was probably about ten years ago that i realised i couldn't just sit around getting restless waiting for summer to come and solve my problems. but then maybe it takes a country like norway or canada to help you appreciate the winter. england has the crapest winter (crapest most things). but then denmark has a pretty useless spring. so go figure. what i'm missing the most right now are the lakes and fjords, the swedish coast.

slightly divergent, i'm quite impressed that i've got so used to getting up at 6am. even though it took nine months and a complete breakdown of my sleep cycle. also, i'm not really that used to it. not really. so nevermind. but what's most annoying is that since marika gained the ability to sleep through the night i've lost it myself. it feels like every night brings a slow degredation of my functionality, to be slightly over dramatic about it. and i've been having the worst dreams too.

the other night i dreamt i was back at 2 vicarage road, visiting for some reason, and i kept making faces in the mirrors, trying to make myself look like i did as a boy. the end of the dream focused on the welding bulge on the toilet pipe upstairs, the one i always thought looked like it had an egg lodged halfway down from the cistern. the shit that sticks with you and messes you up, it's unbelievable.

and how about that irn bru with ginger? best idea ever, 2012.

10.07.2012: can someone please go educate the idiots at LOGOC on how the internet works - this is the most retarded linking policy i've ever read:

"You may not use any link to the Site as a method of creating an unauthorised association between an organisation, business, goods or services and London 2012, and agree that no such link shall portray us or any other official London 2012 organisations (or our or their activities, products or services) in a false, misleading, derogatory or otherwise objectionable manner.


oh, and also your logo is shit. like, really shit. my sperm could do better.

and also everything else, as well.

10.07.2012: before you dismiss this as another silly rubik's cube post let me try and promise you that ultimately it's not. even though it is.

anyway, i remember having a rubik's cube from a very young age. i could never solve it of course, but i was quite adept at taking it apart and putting it back together. or at least i could until i lost a corner piece (still not found), which is what happens when you leave all the disassembled pieces in a bowl for several months. anyway, that missing piece put an end to my rubik's adventures for over ten years, until late one night in 2004 when me and Chris T-T found one in a brighton pub. i hadn't played with one for years, and i was quite impressed when Chris solved it. a few weeks later i found another one, this time at a car-boot sale, and so i bought it for 50p. three months later i decided to scale up and i ordered a full set, from a 2x2x2 all the way up to a 5x5x5, which was the biggest you could get at the time (incidently, on my walk to work i used to pass a guy trying to solve one). then about a year later i bought a siamese 4x2x2x2 in copenhagen, but it was no big thing. these cubes were all i needed. until another four years later when i found my second 'mod', a bump/mirror cube, pictures of which i'd seen floating around on the internet for a while. i'd wanted one but had no idea how to get one, nowhere (not even online) had them, and then all of a sudden they were for sale in the games shop.

my story from that point on is one that spirals out of control, as you may have noticed.

but where am i going with this? well, i was watching a talk by Oskar Van Deventer (dutch cube day 2011) and he explained how in 2010 there had been significantly more puzzles designed and released than any year previous, and how in the same year there had also been a massive increase in members of the twistypuzzles forum (i got rejected btw, because i refused to write a paragraph explaining why i wanted to signup). this increase in the interest and production of puzzles, especially the sudden spike in 2010, coincides very well with my own curve of interest. i'm not sure how or where the correlation or coincidence lie on that relationship, but either way, i was curious as to what happened in the last five years to cause it. so i emailed Oskar, and also Tony Fisher and Uwe Mefferts (who is somewhat a pioneer of twist puzzles - he is the Erno you haven't heard of) to see if they had any theories.

the short answer is that they didn't, or at least nothing concrete.

Oskar pointed out that the 3D printing company shapeways (that started in 2008) had made it considerably easier for designers to develop, produce, and sell their designs (and it is amazing, btw). every new design builds on what came before it, allowing for ever increasing complexity, especially when it comes to higher order puzzles. examples aren't really necessary (also, Oskar's 17x17x17 from last year speaks for itself), but the recent witeden mixup cube is a complicated 3x3x3 that's based on the witeden 2x2x2, which itself has a 3x3x3 core based on the dayan speedcube design.

so this could certainly explain a sudden acceleration in mass-producible puzzle designs, some of which had been theoretical for years (see meffert's catalogue from 1982, which was compromised largely of cardboard mockups). but this requires the demand for puzzles as well, was the demand always there, or did it develop at the same speed? and what about the wealth of mods that have been around almost as long as the cube itself?

Tony Fisher has been modding puzzles for decades (he first produced his siamese cube in 1982), and although modding rarely invoves mechanical invention, it often creates puzzles with new characteristics ('supercubes' such as the axis cube, bandaged cubes, or really messed up stuff like the bermuda cubes). Tony began making his fisher cubes in the mid 80s, but these were all handmade and presumably very difficuly to acquire. in 1991 he began producing them for Christoph Bandelow (who published several books on 'Cubologie' in the early 80s) to sell in his puzzle catalogue (for 30 deutsche mark). over the period of a few years they sold around 125 (meanwhile sales of standard rubik's cubes were already in seven figures). if you have more than a passing interest in rubik's cubes then the fisher cube is absolutely brilliant. would they have sold more if they'd been properly mass produced, or weren't people really that interested? maybe the original cube was enough for people back then.

but anyway, in 2009 a chinese company started producing knock-off fisher cubes, so they're now readily available to everyone. unfortunately no one i've spoken to knows exactly how many were made or sold, but i'm willing to bet it's a lot. so here's a theory - at some point in the last five years the puzzle community reached a critical mass, met by the decreasing cost of production in china, that enabled mass-production to become viable for many more puzzles. suddenly you don't need to be obsessed about twisty puzzles to find and purchase them, so more people can become interested and the demand can grow further, making even more puzzles feasible to produce.

all of the developments in engineering and the novelty aspects of new designs are great, but how has the original cube's popularity fared? apparently it's now reached sales in the region of 350 million units. this shows a definite increase in growth rate compared to the initial burst of 30 million units in its first seven years (the 'craze'). in 2008 it had global sales of 15 million, which was a 25% increase over the previous year. in the UK alone sales were apparently up 300% over those two years (citation needed?). speedcubing has also seen large increases in popularity, with the world cube association (WCA) organising competitions all over the world - between 20 and 30 a month in 2012. their first world championship was held in 2003 in toronto and 15 countries participated, in 2009 there were 32 countries represented - "in 2003 it signed up just 89 new members; 2008 it added 2200".

the resurgence of speedcubing came from people organising over the internet, which in 1999 was probably the only place you could compete with anyone on a speedsolve. the internet enables the easy communication and sharing of algorithms, so suddenly anyone can solve the cube in under a minute. did F2L conceptually exist before the internet? who even knew what CFOP was (its the most common speedsolving method used by every cuber in the top 10 since 2005) before Jessica Fridrich popularised/defined it by posting it on her website in 1995?

the conclusion that most of these threads leads to is rather boring - it's the internet again. it consolidates the people interested in a particular niche, thereby dramatically increasing collaboration and feedback, and apparently also production, be it theoretical or material. i suppose this comes back to the idea of ideas having sex and the long tail concept that arises when everything suddenly becomes freely and massively connected. we're organising and enriching and blossoming.

but here it goes full circle. one of the people i emailed came back with the rather curt reply "everything grows with popularity", which i thought was rather useless, but now i'm realising maybe he had a point. maybe there isn't anything to investigate here, it's just business as usual for random niches at the peak of our information revolution. which is about the knobiest sentence i've written yet, and is about as far as i can take these thoughts for now.

has the same thing happened with yo-yos? cup stacking? extreme black metal? pez dispensers? unicycles? any ideas?

02.07.2012: making out on the park bench is fine, but aren't you a little old for that kind of thing? also i don't want to see your uterus. get a room.

we've been taking down the giant hogweed all weekend, grim-reaper style. it's been a mission. but also a lot of fun, in a strange scary kind of way. it's incredibly satisfying beheading the giant fuckers, then pulling them down from the base. schwap - death incarnate. and i kill all your brothers and sisters too! i rampage on your impossibly large colony. (it's easy to get carried away.) but then you climb up on top of a truck, or whatever the hell that garbage was, and in all directions but one there's nothing to be seen but giant white flower heads. four meters up and they don't even sway in the breeze they're so badass. but they all fall in the end, amongst the brambles and old car batteries. dead rednecks, or whatever.

and of course i got burned, being a noob and all, but as far as i'm concerned it isn't a big deal. i'm clearly not smart enough to wear long sleeves the day after, hmmm?

so, my new favourite game to play with marika is called "what is it?". how you play is you find something and then ask three simple questions - "what is it? what was it? what will it be?". it's a great game, except the final question almost always end in "dust..", which is maybe a little too dark for the young ones.

29.06.2012: so i'm going to have a bit of a whinge. because that's what my website lacks, right, a good rant? and maybe i shouldn't, because it's a bit personal, but really it's not. even though it kind of this. but anyway, i'm complaining because my daughter is almost ten months old and none of my non-denmark friends have met her yet. i know this is largely my fault for living in a 'weird' country, and it's not like we couldn't have travelled either, but still.

now, before any of you get all defensive, don't, because it's ok. on an individual basis it's fine, really. like i said, it's nothing personal. even if it's a case of not getting around it, or just not really being bothered, that's completely ok. but collectively, just one big shit.

i don't really know what to say, so i probably shouldn't have started. but there you go. it's been bothering me a bit recently, and not least because i simply miss everyone. y'know. so now i'm going to go cry in a small dark room, probably the toilet, just to try and make everyone feel as weird and awkward as possible. um, or something.

27.06.2012: facebook has made aggregate-link-posts like this completely redundant, because if you're reading this you're almost certainly facebook friends with someone who has already posted them (or your grilly, and showed me the links to begin with), but for posterity..

and also because they're essential. and because you're reading this for a reason, and i'm telling you now what that reason is. and if you don't find the links below interesting then maybe we shouldn't be friends on facebook anyway.

so. if you don't know conway's game of life, then that's the first link you need to click on. it's the cellular automaton, simple rules applied to a grid of binary 'cells' that has the potential to exhibit complex emergent behaviour. to create turing machines, etc. and since we all now how fun self-reference is, when someone builds the game within itself everything just implodes a little bit.

i was almost disappointed when it stopped. but a third layer would have been redundant. let's not miss the point here.

if that is too much for you to handle (and it was for me), then try this video instead. it starts you off nice and easy, then about two minutes in it all goes to shit again. go conway, go!

next link is a TED talk by martin rees, which manages to make extremely copmlex things seem quite simple (unless i'm getting it mixed up with another video). watch it, it's only 17 minutes, and then go and read grant morrison's the invisbles.

as for the comments underneath that video - whilst we continue to argue with creationists we're not discussing the more important topics amongst ourselves.

the there's anne-marie slaughter's article about combining career and family life. i was a little sceptical when i started reading it - what has this to do with women that it doesn't have to do with men? (i should know better than to write such sentences, but maybe you know where i'm coming from.) but it's one of the best pieces of writing on the (various) subject(s) i've read in a long time, and i've not even finished it yet. it applies a little too heavily to american style power jobs, politics etc, but that's entirely relevant to the rest of us as well - these are the people running/destroying our countries/world.

now i need to go and have nightmares about killing the fish. i know it's nothing, a mercy killing is a good deed at worst, but i haven't killed much in my life, y'know. nothing that big. it's no fun at all. especially during the middle of the day when i'm 'baby sitting' (if you can call it then when it's your own baby - you can't) and i can't take a beer afterwards. marika didn't enjoy it much either.

fuck it. fuck it.

25.06.2012: and we are crawling..

24.06.2012: shuffler have been recording this weekend, bunker style, and it's been sweet nice and dandy. but that's not what i wanted to write about, it's just functioning as a useful introduction, because before recording comes tuning, and during this tuning was when i noticed my bass was in dropped d. this was confusing, because we'd played a gig the night before and i couldn't remember tuning since. infact, not since before the soundcheck. the thought took a long time to process, because what it meant was a little hard to comprehend.

when i said i was tired and not feeling on form, i meant it - but so tired that i played a whole set (and soundcheck) in the wrong tuning and didn't even notice?

hey, no one else noticed either. maybe it's testament to my bass skills. or maybe i'm an idiot. or maybe the bass was just too quiet or muffled to notice. either way, this is one i won't be living down for a long time.

and then i went and hit an old woman. or rather, rode my bike into an old woman. or more like, an old woman jumped out infront of my bike and i knocked her down. fucking tourists. she was jumping out of the way of another cyclist who was speeding past me in his lycra, blocking my view of any potential idiots trying to cross on a red light, and instead of jumping back onto the pavement she came from she jumped infront of me. and i know she had a red light, because i'd been waiting patiently for my green.

the conversation went like this:

"are you alright?"
"are you sure you're alright?"
"yes, it was my fault"
"yeah i know it was, but are you ok?"

at which point they (she was with a younger man) hurried off in a rather dazed state in the direction of the metro. leaving me feeling quite bad about something that wasn't really my fault. but nevermind. i was fine. thinking something like "only one accident in six years of cycling in copenhagen isn't that bad", only worsens the situation.

as for marika, she's learnt how to roll over in her crib. so putting her to bed is like playing on nightmare.

17.06.2012: a while ago i wrote a lot of words about rubik's cubes and related puzzles, and for not much reason i felt the urge to do it again. to kind of illustrate what i mean by rubik's cube variations, as if it will make people think i'm less weird or something the more i explain it. anyway, here are some of my favourites, in a vaguely sensible order:

Mirror/Bump Cube

A simple 3x3x3 shape modification created by transposing the cube off-center of the core. Each piece is a different shape and size, so there's no need for colours - the cube is only a cube when completely solved. This is what you might call single segment shape shifting, since the changing shape does not effect how the puzzle can twist.

Axis Cube

Another 3x3x3 shape modifcation, this one created by rotating the outer cube around the core by something like 30 degrees, so that a corner of each centre piece is now in the corner of the larger cube, leaving none of the pieces regular cuboids. Unlike the mirror cube this is actually more complex than a standard rubik's cube due to new orientation issues on the centre pieces (it's called a 'super cube'), not to mention it's just plain confusing.

Void Cube

A rubik's cube without the pieces that hold it all together, mostly fun from an engineering point of view. Because it has no centers you don't know which face is which relative to the 'core', which can lead to a 'parity error' (in quotes because it's not technically parity, but nevermind) - it looks like two pieces need to be swapped but of course they can't.

Bermuda Cubes

Now it gets complicated. The bermuda cubes have identical cores to all of above puzzles, however they have wider centre pieces, so that the width of a middle edge piece is identical to the width of a corner piece when rotated (45 degrees) into the same position. This, in combination with a number of triangular shaped centres (whose faces have five 'corners', btw), allow for certain layers to be turned only 45 degrees. The triangular centres also cut edge to edge on their face, bandaging the sides they overlap with (they are locked and cannot be turned). I have two of these cube, one of which is a nice challenge and very fun (mercury), and one that i can't even begin to solve (earth).

Cubic 3x3x9

Trying to work out how this would compare to a proportional 3x3x9 hurts a little bit, but either way it's a nice step up in complexity from a standard rubik's cube, with some interesting new challenges to contend with. I view it as a 3x3x3 modification when solving it, probably because it bandages into a 3x3x3.

Proportional 4x4x6

This cuboid allows 90 degree rotations in all axis, so it shape shifts, but with bandaging. When scrambled it acts like a standard 4x4x4, but more complicated in ways I can't really explain yet. I'm still not a big fan of even layer parity.


The dodecahedron actually solves very much like a standard rubik's cube, just picture each face as a face of a 3x3x3 but with an extra edge.

Gear Cube Extreme

A far more complex version of the Gear Cube (not pictured), which has every piece interconnected via gears. Whereas the Gear Cube is rather trivial to solve (no really, you can do it by accident), since every twist is mirrored on the opposite face, and solving one face solves the other, the Gear Cube Extreme has an axis that is not geared, allowing 90 degree non-geared turns as well as the 'normal' 180 degrees. This is a puzzle truly evil.

Gear Shift

Very silly but quite unique, this is a cube that's made of eight interconnected corners, so that when one corner is turned they all turn. The puzzle scrambles by being pulled apart (possible in each axis), so that each half can be turned independently to the other.

Dino Cube

The simplest of the corner turning puzzles, the dino cube is included here for fun.


The skweb is corner turning and deep cut, so that the centre of rotation bisects the cube, and rotation effects every face. Twisting also moves the centres relative to each other, so this is nothing much like a rubik's cube. If you can solve a rubik's cube algorithmically then the skewb can be a significant challenge, but if you can solve a rubik's cube using principles (whatever that means) then they should be applicable.

Master Skewb

Created by combining the normal Skewb and the Dino Cube - the centre and corner pieces are equivalent to the corners and centre of the Skweb, whilst the edges are equivalent to the Dino Cube's pieces. Just to make things really complicated there are an extra four pieces on each face as well. Rotating one corner rotates the three corners around it and all the pieces encompassed in that triangle. This is probably the most complex puzzle in this list.

Rex Cube

A sexier version of the Master Skewb, and without the Skewb corners. Also unsolved in the photograph for a reason.

Mosaic Cube

Also a corner turning puzzle, but far less complex than the previous two puzzles as it's not as deep cut - the corner and surrounding three pieces can turn independently, as can the next ring of nine pieces. Key to solving this puzzle is realising each middle segment is attached to a middle piece on the next nearest face.

Curvy Copter

An edge turning puzzle which is a curvier and slightly more complex variation of a standard Helicopter Cube - the Curvy Copter has extra centre pieces (or edge pieces, depending on how you look at). Edges can either be rotated 180 degress, or 71 degress, allowing pieces to 'jumble' (position swapping of centre and corner pieces). It has little in common with any of these other cubes.

Super Square-1

A completely different puzzle again. This is the even more horrendously unintuitive, complex, and difficult to manipulate version of the Square-1. It is a cube when solved. Apparently.

nerd, what? what's most embarrassing is that one of my neighbours caught me taking the photographs.

15.06.2012: beyond trying to figure out why it didn't quite work, i wasn't going to be spending much time thinking about prometheus. however a discussion at work about the film not making any sense got me thinking. and here begins the spoilers..

although completely ambiguous, with absolutely no clues at all, i'm going to presume the planet at the start is earth. and given that presumption, this is supposed to be the introduction of life to our planet - no design or creation, just the introductory spark of DNA that all else comes from. from a hardcore science fiction point of view this makes no sense, especially given revelations later in the film, but as far as the idea of these engineers being our god-like forefathers goes i think it's as good as it's going to get. and theologically it says nothing, unless you take the bible literally, in which case i don't want to talk to you anyway.

either way, the engineers are responsible for us, and for an unspecified reason they apparently decided to exterminate us holocaust style. what the film really lacks (maybe intentionally, but it's annoying) is an explanation of why. ridley scott mentioned in an interview about 'uncivilised behaviour', and that's the least vague it gets. are we to believe these engineers are highly advanced barbarians? we wanted a reason, but of course that must wait for the sequel.

anyway, at some point in our evolution (i'm quite confident we can still call it that) the engineers made a decision to 'end the experiment'. given that they estimate the death of the engineers at about 2000 years (i can't remember whether that was in prometheus or alien), then we can probably just blame it all on jesus - "oh no, they invented religion again, we must destroy them". cute huh? and it was all the fault of jesus. nevermind.

12.06.2012: what's wrong with copenhagen's traffic system? why am i getting stopped at every red light? i wouldn't mind so much, except every other cyclists ignores them. which is what happens when an ignorable solution so ungraciously fails to solve an unrelatable problem. fix it, before i get fined again.

also, i ordered a DIY dayan guhong, because i thought that it would be fun (and after many hours chosing it over a zhanchi). it's a $10 puzzle, it ain't no thing. but what arrived through the post is the completely ridiculous mf8 master kilominx. which is a $45 puzzle, definately a thing. i'd complain, because i did really wanted a guhong, but i can't bring myself to do it. funny that. the kilominx is a kind of 4x4 megaminx (in the same way that a gigaminx would be a 5x5 megaminx), and it's a little terrifying. in ways that i thought the pyraminx crystal would be (but wasn't). and not least because i need to sticker it myself. and that's a lot of stickers (240).

i could watch babies fall asleep all day. perhaps not babies plural indefinite. but i'm not sure either way. it really is the most precious thing.

and finally, a fascinating link to go with yesterdays rant, movie budget records. did you know that 'the phantom menance' was more profitable than 'a new hope', but only by half a million? and it only cost ten times to make. i also enjoyed the 'most profitable based on ROI' section, with 'mad max' doing incredibly well. also 'american graffiti', but no sign of those pesky star war movies. pi was also listed somewhere in there. and i'd like to comment on the biggest losers, but of course i hardly know any of them. wasn't 'hugo' supposed to be quite good?

11.06.2012: saturday's highlight was going to the cinema, something we haven't been able to do for about 9 months. so i'd have enjoyed almost any film we saw. which is not quite true, of course, but i enjoyed prometheus plenty. firstly, it was visually stunning, in ways that films need to be if i can be bothered to see them at the cinema these days (we saw it in 2D, btw, on purpose). that was kind of enough for me. and some of the scenes were very good. some weren't. but the problem is, it doesn't quite add up to everything it should be. but who am i to say what it should or shouldn't be? and so there's my point, all you people who were so disappointed with it only have yourselves to blame, for having such high expectations. maybe.

there's an important question, and that's why these films should be made at all when there are already too many brilliant films to watch. but i'm willing to bet that prometheus was the best film showing at the time, and unless everyone is willing to drop all film production for a while, this is as good as mainstream cinema gets.

so why make the film? or why remake spiderman or total recall? (about which, can someone who has read 'we can remember it for you wholesale' comment on whether there's enough content there to at all justify a remake? i thought the original was actually quite good.) would guillermo del toro's film be any better? and given the absolute lack of originality in hollywood (spiderman and total recall being example enough), couldn't he just make it anyway? i mean, weren't there just two films about snow white released? didn't thirteenth floor and the matrix come out at the same time (oh, they were seperate by two weeks)? aren't all romantic comedies basically identical?

last random thought, i was going to comment on how the neuromancer film had been permanently shelved, since it had been so heavily used, abused and plagiarised across hollywood (and beyond) leaving nothing left to make a film out of. except it turns out they're still gunning for that one. nevermind. i hope it works out for you, really. and then there's the tourist (no, not the johnny depp film), of course. you can't blame that shit on men in black anymore. hollywood truly ate itself.

all this gives me an idea, how about hollywood shuts down for a year or two, gives itself some time to think about the state of the movie industry, sort itself out. watch primer a few times. meanwhile all the cinemas can show the truly great films, put some life back into it. there must be hundreds of 'old' films i'd love to see at the cinema. we could start with 'alien'.

since i'm on the topic of hollywood, kind of, i've been ranting for a while now that if the film industry wants to make more money, going after piracy isn't going to help you. have you people actually looked at your budgets? try spending $100,000,000 less on your movie. that money isn't going to make it any better.

and to tie that all together, the original girl with the dragon tattoo film cost $13 million, whereas the remake (that was released only two years later) cost $90 million, but 'only' made double. i'm willing to bet more people have seen the original.

i could make a better post about this, if i had time to go back and restructure all the points into something cohesive, but nevermind.

anyway, prometheus. it was good, it was great. isn't that enough for you?

10.06.2012: apart from a few minor points, of varying levels of forgivability and predicatability, our gig on friday night was a great success. i can now cross off "play on a multi-tiered stage" from my list of must-dos before i turn 31.

but given the mood i'm in (crappy), these problems must be discussed. and from the perspective of a miserable sunday afternoon, the biggest of them was the rain. the weather was looking great, so a trip down helinsgor's little shopping street in search of food and without my rain jacket seemed perfectly reasonable. but we hadn't sat down for five minutes in a little 'italian' place when the sky suddenly darkened and all that wet shit happened. dreadful. it's as if i can blame all my snottyness on that, and nothing to do with all the free beers or getting to bed at i-can't-admit-exactly-what-hour.

also annoying is being told that you absolutely must arrive at the venue at a set time, only to find they've only just begun building the stage. we were there at 18:00, and we didn't soundcheck until about 21:30. what did we do in the meantime? get wet.

but worst of all, don't go telling the bands that the food is vegan when it has fucking chicken in it.

it was of course a brilliant night though, so please ignore all of my unnecessary negativity. larica and napoleon solo were awesome. and i'm sure one more than 12 were too, but we really had to leave, since it was already 2am (or something similarly horrific). so thanks to everyone for a decent night.

(aha! the banana bread is finally starting to rise, and no longer looks like it's about to turn into a giant yorkshire)

01.06.2012: one of the many articles i've been saving for rainy days (and today is a rainy day), the caging of america.

i know it's about ratios, but also it's not:

Mass incarceration on a scale almost unexampled in human history is a fundamental fact of our country today - perhaps the fundamental fact, as slavery was the fundamental fact of 1850. In truth, there are more black men in the grip of the criminal-justice system - in prison, on probation, or on parole - than were in slavery then. Over all, there are now more people under "correctional supervision" in America - more than six million - than were in the Gulag Archipelago under Stalin at its height. That city of the confined and the controlled, Lockuptown, is now the second largest in the United States.


The accelerating rate of incarceration over the past few decades is just as startling as the number of people jailed: in 1980, there were about two hundred and twenty people incarcerated for every hundred thousand Americans; by 2010, the number had more than tripled, to seven hundred and thirty-one.

which reminds, we've only got one season of the wire left to watch.

28.05.2012: i'm starting to wonder if i've been going about this eurovision thing the wrong way. i really enjoy a good eurovision party (something most people don't seem to understand) but maybe i've been putting too much focus on the final, wanting to hear all the songs for the first time on the big night. one party, all surprises, etc. the problem is that i miss all the non-finalists. i have to watch them on youtube afterwards. the other problem is that eurovision parties are always very loud and drunken, you miss half of the songs. so i have to watch all of those songs again on youtube as well.

so next year i think i'll be watching all the semi-finals. which is triple the number of parties. excellent, right?

also, the songs that don't get through are some of the best as well. i mean, georgia was hilarious. slovakia would have won if they'd gotten through the semi-finals - in it for the crabcore alone (although, i did kind of like the hidden metal qualities of iceland and macedonia). i don't know what montenegro where thinking, europe just isn't ready for that kind of brilliance yet. also israel, drunken excellence. and the netherlands outfit was so silly it needed to be seen.

but then, san marino shouldn't have even gotten into the semi-finals at all. no one needed to see or hear that.

anyway, on this year final. surprise favourites from laurence - turkey and albania. although malta should have won for their little feet dance, which was the contest's highlight, no doubt. it wasn't quite up there with epic sax guy, but it was close. moldova was also highly regarded.

disappointments - what happened to denmark and norway? we were butchered. i thought denmark would do quite well, and norway was brilliant. and there we were sucking null points with fucking engelbert humperdinck, or john travolta, whoever that old guy was. and bosnia herzegovina let me down, although it was cool that laka delivered their scores.

i wish it could be eurovision every day.

23.05.2012: for a long time now i've wanted to write an extensive blog post about how it's taken for granted, to an almost unbearable level, that a child's gender is implied/defined by the clothes that they're wearing - to the point that we're being questioned on not dressing marika up in pink, as if there must be some interesting explanation as to why she's allowed to be colourful. "did she inherit the clothes from an older brother?", etc. we couldn't possibly have simply wanted her to not be all pink today.

and that's the worst part, because if she's not wearing pink (or other close variation of red) the presumption is always on boy. not green, not yellow, not brown, and definitely not blue. the boys stole the whole colour spectrum, leaving only a tiny slice of off-red (entertainingly close to the patronymic name 'offred') for the girls. white is also allowed, but discussions on the colour status of white and black can be held elsewhere (and with knives).

some sympathetic parents have told us it never used to be this bad. apparently 30 years ago all kids wore all colours. what happened? we're now living in a less patriarchal society, where the 'we' is an unfortunately limited 'we' and 'less' is less than perfect. but it's as if people need gender definitions strengthened to cope with it. the idea of boys vs girls has never been stronger. but i think a lot of that is due to the nature of the problem - it's self-reinforcing.

as an idea emerges and propagates, of what a boy looks like and what a girl looks like, people are forced to conform to it, which validates it and pushes it forward. either that or they have to put up with the kind of crap we deal with, like when someone presumes marika is a boy because the piece of plastic in her mouth is blue. if you want people to know the gender of your child, you have to dress them in the (single) correct colour. you have to buy clothes for them from the correct aisle (these are boys shoes, these are girls shoes, and somehow this is not ridiculous).

the thought leads to the question of why people care. why do you need to say "my child is a boy" or "my child is a girl"? and moreover, why do you need to question me as to why i've dressed my daughter in the 'wrong' clothes? we should be happy with children being children. we don't need to fuck them up before they have a chance to do it themselves. some psychologists (or, like, whoever) have said that these gender definitions are important so that children are to be able to tell the difference between boys and girls, but i'm yet to hear a good reason as to why that is important. when all our kids grow up homosexual and fail to produce further generations i'll be eating my words, for sure.

or maybe it's more passive than that, unknowingly/unquestioningly conforming to a subconcious idea of what the child should look like. it's almost cute how my nan didn't understand how my mum could begin knitting a jumper for marika before we knew the gender - how do you know what colour wool to use? likely, most of the world's problems are due to passivity.

another alternative is that people don't actually care how their children are perceived, they're just lazy and unimaginative when they purchase their clothes. which would lead to the question of why (nearly) all clothing brands choose to be so overly gender specific. isn't our new consumeristic capitalist age all about choice, or have i missed the point of that as well? you're free to chose from a thousand variations of one colour and style. to know the reasoning behind the choices i'd have to talk to the market researchers, and i wouldn't come out of that alive, so nevermind.

we've been very vocal in our wishes to have gender unspecific clothes, but yet marika's wardrobe is full of pinks. has everyone gone for the 'safe' option when buying us gifts? or are these the only options they've been given in a shop that separates out the girls' and boys' clothing? at the end of the day it's the consumer's responsibility, and i'm desperate to assign blame. and when a shopper has to ask "is this coat also suitable for a girl/boy?", you know the problem goes deeper than shelf arrangement.

the conspiracy of pink is surely not everyone's fault. is it? i'm all out of ideas. help.

22.05.2012: i'm currently in love with the prospect of summer. every evening the smell of grilling. cut grass and bananas left out in the sun. this balmy air, with a bowl full of salad and half a beer in hand, shorts and tshirt. it makes me miss the festivals. a freedom absurd at the height of summer. a reminder of what we lost when we starting living life 'properly'.

we have agriculture to blame for that fall.

anyway. i managed to spend almost the entirety of saturday in the courtyard. reinstalling myself as another piece of furniture. never a quiet moment. today we even managed to bath marika on the lawn. that was just beautiful. it's such a shame the community dies out in the winter.

also before i forget, i just read through the delux edition of flex mentallo and it's still the best thing ever. and i didn't even notice the new colouring until i looked back at the old comics and all of a sudden they looked dreadful. just, wow. i had something to say about it's fractal nature. how every page contains the entire story, how larger structures emerge out of the simple panels, the story of everything spun from a single acorn, etc. but i forgot my point. you never need read another comic again.

also i read through big questions, in almost one sitting. the end was kinda of disappointing, but only because it could have (and i wanted it to) go on forever. did i notice all the theological arguments the first time around? i suppose i couldn't have missed them. we need more atheist bird stories. or maybe it's just me.

20.05.2012: as threatened, fragmented states of unwritten blog posts, with bonus entertaining quotes thrown in for good fun and confusion.

the word 'month' just lost all meaning

vegan koldskal = best idea ever. execution of vegan koldskal = pretty bad.

clouds like behemoths making tapestries of the sky

the dogs have all got masks

the pig was the clitoris

emo like smashing your guitar into chris carrabba's face

my random email generator just came up with and, aren't they nice? i should email them to see if those people actually exist, tell them they have beautiful names.

i just remembered how i learnt to write - tracing letters and squiggly patterns through tracing paper. i still doodle those squiggles on an almost daily basis.

the skill in clip art is knowing how to search for it, picking something not cheesy, and then removing the watermark

two coffees later and i can still taste my dentist

who knew that aubergines had thorns?

marika is turning into a person. and she even has a choice of hair styles - the tintin and the hitler.

placebo's second album is way better than i remembered. but then, what is a memory of an album you haven't listened to properly in almost 15 years? all these different instruments come out of places you never knew existed before. um, maybe like the recorder on the bends.

this wallet makes me wish i lived in a country that didn't use coins

better luck next time..

19.05.2012: shuffler is shaping up to be quite the partying gig machine. apparently suitable for any venue, be it the big stage, small cafes, halls of residence, someone's backyard, or under a tree. we are bookable, just try us.

friday night was all about cafe zussamen, a cute little volunteer-run place owned by the red cross. kind of like what fisk should have been, and what cafe retro would be if it had a small stage (and a little less hipness). because it was a small stage. with no sound engineer. or backline. or monitors. but that's ok. i borrowed this tiny little amp, smaller than most practice amps, and completely overloaded the poor thing. but the beauty flowed through. even the songs i thought we were getting bored of were exciting. and so there was dancing, which is always nice, especially in a table and chairs orientated venue. all good crowds.

and if we can play well with conditions like these, we can play anyway. cola wine, or no cola wine.

also included was the only backstage i've ever enjoyed being in. i hate backstages for all the right reasons, they're anti-social and rarely even useful (i.e. for warming up or relaxing) since they're always full of other bands' friends. ever since smoking was banned in venues everyone treats backstage as the smoking room. and that really pisses me off. because i like smelling nice.

and if ska isn't your thing, there's always drunken butterfly! i miss the noise, we want your party.

13.05.2012: we've not had much luck with the people living in the apartment adjacent to ours. when we first moved here our neighbours were a scary couple i rarely saw but often heard. their arguements were viscious and ended in what sounded like physical violence, to the point that we almost called the police on several occasions. to make it more tragic i've imagined they were newly weds, trapped in a new apartment they couldn't sell due to falling house prices. some shit like this.

when they moved out it was a big relief. all was peaceful. then for a short while the apartment was occupied by a group of muscle men. they kept to themselves, but there was always talk about them injecting steroids. it was just strange.

after them came a weird pale man who may or may not have lived with his wife and baby (we rarely saw them). apart from being extremely pale he never bothered me much, but he did regularly harass our neighbours upstairs, whose boy apparently made an awful lot of noise that constantly woke the baby. they eventually moved out, claiming that the damp in the apartment was making the baby sick. this baby that was never outside.

at least by now they'd sorted out the rat problem.

for a while the apartment remained empty and i began to worry that the original couple would move back in (possibly they still own it and have been renting it out). instead we got a brian from jutland and a brenna from texas. they were nice enough, and we probably should have made better friends with them. but they weren't without their problems, and again with the violent argueing. in my head i imagined he was an actor reading lines, going completely over board whilst his girlfriend read them back as deadpan as she possibly could. something about having your life ruined, something about taking your hands of my throat. they also had a habit of making our opgang smell like weed at 10am in the morning.

in the end they were both 'shipped back' to america, after having a particularly hard time with the danish immigration system (i had warned them, but they were naive). they left us a basket of all their leftover foodstuffs on our doorstep, which was incredibly nice of them.

a couple of months later a new moving van appears outside, lots of people and kids everywhere. i thought we had a family moving in, but after the initial flurry of people everything went quiet. as far as i know there's only a woman living next door now. i see her occasionally but she never smiles and she never says hej. so i made up a backstory for her, involving a messy divorce and her losing custody of her children. that's the kind of horrible person i am. but that's also the kind of person that she looks like when she's taking her rubbish out at 8am.

but anyway, where's this story going? we came home last night, shortly after 11pm, and there's a humongous turd sitting happy on her doormat. there's piss all over the stairs. and it ain't from a dog.

what is wrong with these people? and what the fuck is wrong with that apartment?

06.05.2012: i love it when something you're working on far exceeds your original vision. this rarely happens, at least not to me, but when it does these days it's usually the drunken butterflies comic. especially the most recent episode - the tribute to jim marshall and adam yauch. apparently my paintshop skills are better than my imagination, or something. but anyway, my favourite part of the comic's not actually the flames (yes, they took a long time), but the phrase "kill off". it's how i'd talk about (a certain) someone writing the death of batman, as if the butterflies relationship to the beastie boys is that of comicbook superheroes, which isn't so different to my own relationship with the beastie boys, except of course the context is inverted - shouldn't our reality be their fiction? anyway, waffling.

it's not like i've even listened to the beastie boys since hello nasty, which never really caught me. i listened to boroughs barely twice. but y'know, some of the first basslines i ever learnt were from check your head and ill communication. just saying.

apart from this, all is well. getting on with family life. parks and playgrounds.

and my 'draft' folder is full of half written blog posts. one of these days i'll just copy a bunch of the sentences over at random and let it be.

16.04.2012: anymore i can't go on stage at 11pm and then stick around afterwards, partying until gone three in the morning. so i don't know why i'm trying. but once it's gone midnight it's just too hard to up and leave - it's already too late and another hour wont hurt. right? i mean, we can hang out in the corridor like i never quite mastered as a student, making bad jokes and drinking the cola wine.

maybe it's because none of my halls of residence had a fully equiped venue. we barely had a bar. and nevermind a pizza takeaway. it's like living in montreal, these kids don't have to ever go outside. they can eat pizza whilst doing their laundry and not have to walk more than ten meters. it's enough to make anyone over 23 feel old.

as for the state of me, i might have been ok if i hadn't have thrown my meal ticket away when i found out that the afore mentioned pizza kitchen had closed, only for it to reopen an hour later. stupid mario.

the gig was blinding though. i'm so happy we're finally getting shuffler up and running hot. we are a total party band. we can play anywhere and people will smile and dance. even if it takes them two thirds of the set to get warmed up. after our last song the organiser even came over and told us we could play an encore if we wanted, even though we'd previously been warned about going over time. if only we had more songs, ey?

hit me with the tamborine, etc.

chicken this, chicken that.

so thanks to everyone who made the night so much fun. not least the person who switched the smoke machine off before we went on.

12.04.2012: obviously i'm back from norway, which i suppose isn't obvious to anyone apart from me and those people who have seen me. so novembermind. that was a genuine typo, and now i'm a little scared about it.

anyway. it was a typically lovely easter, made somewhat easier by a lack of proper snow. sure there was plenty of snow, but none of that break-your-arm skiing type of snow. so it was as relaxed as could be up in the mountains. sleeping in late most days. marika being generally awesome, especially in her new pushchair. there was krimi and whiskey and many good games of settlers. waffles on the veranda, reading the taqwacores on the roof (as kenneth will also testify, this is probably one of the best books you could start reading right now).

there was a lot of pre-stress about travelling so far with marika, but she had no problems at all. well, i'm sure she had a few, but it was nothing we couldn't deal with. she was amazing on the bus ride back to olso, managing to stay calm in her chair for a whole three hours. and she barely cared about the rough seas on the boat (not too rough, but we had sea spray up to our cabin window). congratulations all round. good times.

in oslo we were staying with friends who are expecting extremely soon. as i'm writing this i'm actually wondering if their due date has passed yet. so that was a good experience for everyone involved. lunches and dinners and babies everywhere, in person and theme. lots of walks around the oslo suburbs, etc.

and now just pssttcchhhkkk.

29.03.2012: i never did get to tell you about the shuffler gig in christiania (it was great, btw). infact, did i even tell you about shuffler? we even have a shiny shuffler myspace and a shuffler facebook (bonus points for likes, etc).

there was also a new (long overdue) drunken butterfly comic.

anyway, i'm in norway from now until the 11th April, and mostly without internet or phone. so postcard me, or something.

22.03.2012: spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring spring

actually, it's been springy for a while now, but apparently sometimes you only appreciate something when you can't appreciate something. except i think that's bullshit, so nevermind. either way, it looks beautiful on the other side of my bedroom window.

instead i have new dentistry, and a cold that gets me with the worst possible timing. for everyone.

marika squeaks on the kitchen linoleum, rotating on the spot. she's not sleeping much better at night, but at least she's stopped shitting in the bath. she dealt with my cold very well. and i can't wait for the beetroot to come out of the other end.

i also had something to say about the old milkvan that used to drive up and down our street. i woke up in the early hours the other day thinking i'd heard it. i hadn't thought about it for years. who even has milk delivered to their door these days anyway? was it even normal twenty years ago? i don't know, but when i was younger i remember many sleepless early mornings spent listening to the milkman's electric motor whirring as he delivered up and down our street.

operaen tomorrow night.

15.03.2012: last night i finally caught up on doctor who, by which i mean i've now seen all of the moffat/smith episodes. and it's funny, because despite enjoying them, after each episode i felt compelled to rant at great length everything wrong about it. the series is so close to brilliance, but let down by constant and careless sloppy writing. (i only care because i care.)

my main grudge is that the last two seasons felt as if they were written on the fly, which isn't something you can get away with if you're telling a non-linear story. time travel will destroy any non-meticulously planned plot. sure, each season obviously had an over-arching plan, but the episodes clearly weren't written together in one go. there's far too many plot holes, non-sequiturs, and half-baked ideas/twists introduced at the last minute. not to mention the constant rule changing, the most irksome of which is whether (oh, did i mention there would spoilers?) the doctor and river meet in an opposite or non-linear order. or simply an order which happens to best suit the current bit of story you're trying to tell?

"silence will fall" had at least three different meanings over the last two seasons. maybe that is ok, but it's still unresolved. why was the impossible astronaut originaly a girl and then later (or before, depending on i'm-not-sure-whose point of reference) a woman? why does or doesn't she remember this (before or after)? i don't believe for a second that madame kovarian's eye patch was originally concieved as an eye-drive, it was just to make her look freaky. moffat, you're just making it up as you go along. and it might be ok if you watch one episode a week whilst you eat your sunday dinner, but watching it day after day makes all the nonsense rather noticeable. and annoying.

another problem is that the plot of almost every episode has to involve one of the main characters being killed, but then not really being killed somehow, utilizing various levels of deus ex machina. this gets boring extremely quickly, and soon enough i just don't care about any of the life threatening situations. the problem gets so bad that they have to put the characters into dream worlds or keep creating duplicates of them so as to kill them off more effectively and/or convincingly. it's that ridiculous.

did the last season really need three episodes dedicated to that plot device/thought experiment whereby suddenly there exists two versions of the same person and only one of them can survive? not to mention that we're supposed to be in suspense because the doctor dies, but you just had two of him and killed him again, so no big deal. right?

and that's the worst bit - the whole season revolves around the doctor's death, which is something they could have plausibly done (yes, actually dead) whilst still continuing the franchise for as long as they want (see jasper fforde's 'lost in a good book'). that is, if you absolutely insist that every plot must involve your characters dying. but no, it was just another cheap lie. and lying to your audience doesn't make you clever.

honestly, it would've been a much better twist if he'd properly been killed off. it's not like he wouldn't still exist all over space and time.

at least all the fake deaths made a welcome change from moffat's previous theme of punishing characters who go searching for love, which started in blink and continued beyond the point at which i stopped caring or paying proper attention to the characters (because they should have all been dead). i see this as some kind of reaction to all the times moffat must have suffered whilst writing coupling (which i know nothing about of course, apart from that i hate it). every time a character attempted to become in any way romantically involved they were quickly tortured, killed, or otherwise exceptionally badly treated by the script.

quick examples from memory - the policeman in blink being sent back through time after getting all flirty, donna losing her fake/real husband at the end of 'forest of the dead' (oh, and the death of river, of course), tony and nasreen being frozen for thousands of years just after they discovered they kind of liked each other, or something. i suppose i don't need to mention the wedding plot, and all the deadful things amy has to go through to finally become mrs.pond, including the ultra-death and silly plastic resurrection of her fiance. none of that would have happened if her and rory had been happy being single and lonely. and then there was the annoying couple in 'the lodger', but at least they were given a happy ending. does van gogh count in this analysis? maybe not.

actually that reminds me of something else. i really liked the van gogh episode, but it was completely ruined when we got to see the monster. now, i know the great thing about doctor who is the tacky b-movie monsters, and by taking them out you would completely ruin it, but i think it would have been so much better if the monster remained invisible. we didn't need to see it, and it was scarier when you couldn't. i'm almost tempted to go so far as to say the same about the silence/silents, even though the scenes they're in are particularly terrifying. and i guess i don't want to ruin everyone's fun. i just think i'd have enjoyed the disjointedness more than seeing what they looked like. and when you finally saw them at the end of the series it would have been a much better reveal than whatever trash they came up with.

i suppose my problem is that i want grant morrison and audrey niffenegger writing these stories, and maybe jasper fforde could even help out a little too (i just realised that in my head he's played by rob brydon). but maybe that's not what doctor who is supposed to be about. cake, and eat it.

i still smile about the melting baby.

and one last thing. i just remembered why i started watching doctor who to begin with - so that i could read grilly's spoiler-heavy blog post about it. i was promised it'd be worth it (and it was). but now i've gone and written my own overly-long spoiler-heavy blog post and before reading his. except obviously that's now a lie, because when i started writing this paragraph i went over to read it to realise how massively redundant everything i've just written is. or most of it. so nevermind.

12.03.2012: so marika's first few nights sleeping in her room have gone very well, which is something of a surprise, since in the last couple of months she's managed to scream her way more and more into our bed at night. but now her room is all fixed up nice (with lovely new wooden flooring) we decided it was good time she started using it. she can't be getting her own way during the night anymore. um, or something.

so her cot is now back where it should be and she's banned from leaving it during the difficult hours. sure, we probably spent at least two hours trying to calm her down and getting her back to sleep on the first night, with a particularly difficult hour around midnight, but in total i think we all slept better and longer.

this is me trying to be optimistic.

of course the stupid intentional bum after-party didn't help. free beer fun, but until two in the morning. our gig was great though, in feeling and sound. i actually really like playing to a seated crowd. candles. it's cosy. makes the sound of screaming marika through three layers of distortion even more inappropriate.

but anyway, is six months a good time to get strict? did we leave it too late? because we started off so well, and somehow we just slipped into bad habits. sometimes we've simply been too tired to waste an hour of potential sleep on trying to get her to sleep in her own bed. it's easier to just have her lie with us and repeatedly hit us in the face and claw at our noses.

i guess we'll find out.

09.03.2012: i did a test last night. i had a thought that i knew i should write down, but figured i'd remember. and of course i didn't, you never do. but i made sure to remember exactly what it was i was doing at the time, because it was related to that, and so surely the thought would come back to me. but now that's even kind of hazy. i'd probably just watched doctor who and i was going in the fridge, maybe retrieving the lemon curd, which i've been thinking about a lot as well. and i was also preparing milk for marika and also reading my book. and this leaves me where? staring into the fridge thinking that i'll remember this for sure. but nothing.

most likely, and this is my optimistic theory, is that these thoughts get assimilated into the various 'places' they need to be, other thoughts and tasks. they are not forgotten but used, hence why it can't be remembered. it's already been amalgamated. i can't remember it because it's become ubiquitous.

or maybe it was my pro-tip for musicans who have cuts on their fingertips (something i seem to have a lot of right now), which is that plasters don't work - you have to go straight for the gaffa tape. and if you have particularly shiny tape you can also use it as a glass/bottle slide. hurray, no more pain.

or maybe it was about how pink marika was all day. we've been making a concious and significant effort to not have her dressed in "gender specific" colours - we will not have a pink and pastel baby girl. but despite this her wardrobe is full of very girly clothes. and bizarrely enough, despite only being able to see her face (she was wrapped up for sleeping) the man who has been putting down the new floor in her room thought she was a boy at first, because her sut/dummy was blue. get a grip people.

or maybe it was a question - why does all the food i make for marika look the same when it goes in as when it comes out?

or maybe it was how people really don't need to keep telling me i incorrectly pronounce it "nothink". i know.

or maybe it was about me wearing my black metal mogwai tshirt (the one with the upside down cross on) to baby singing at the norwegian church.

gah, it could have been anything. or maybe it was that i had to remind you that drunken butterfly is playing at studenterhuset this saturday. if you come i might buy/give you a beer. if you don't, then i wont. but either way i will be having a particularly nasty setup that includes my zoom ps-02. it will be painful.

05.03.2012: unless you subscribe to my RSS feed you'd probably never have noticed it, but all of my posts actually have titles. for the most part they're useless, random, meaningless and honestly a bit of a hassle to write. and mainly because i rarely write anything that is actually about anything. (so why i bother? i don't know.) anyway, my point was that this post's title is "perks of the job and why i'm not vegan". which is convenient, because it's also the title of this photo:

i was a semi-vegan (egg eater) for the longest time, and then i got a job which effectively gave me unlimited free cheese. every day we receive food from a catering company, included three large pieces of quality cheese. there's only two of us in the office who even go near the cheese, so at the end of the week anything that hasn't been eaten or taken away (by me or him) is thrown away. that photograph up there is what would have been thrown away on friday, along with a few chunks that were, if i hadn't have taken them all.

how many offices does this happen in? just curious.

anyway, it was the cheese selection for julie's birthday party. and i'd woken up that morning with the strongest urge to wear the ugliest tie i could think of. in my wardrobe purple is just another shade of grey. i think this is true for most of the world. but at least it's more proper a colour than brown. to be honest, if a colour is less than secondary i don't see why we should dignify it with a proper noun at all.

great little party though. very chaotic with so many different people. sorry to those who i didn't get to chat with properly, i was too busy drinking light beer and playing with pigs (very badly). actually, did i even win a single game all day? maybe once with quarto. not sure. a day of epic losing, brilliant.

anyone care for a biscuit? with cheese on?

28.02.2012: incase you haven't noticed, i have something of an obsession for rubik's cubes (probably better described as rubik's cube inspired combination puzzles), and after counting over 40 puzzles on my shelf i realised it might be time to have a serious think about it. what exactly is my problem? however, as obsessions are, it's somewhat difficult to rationalise and explain - it's a cube! it rotates! there's like, cubes inside the cube. with it's simple structure, beautiful design and mechanism, how can you not love it? it's so perfectly self-contained and symmetrical. if you stare at it's simplicity long enough you could start believing it's a universal constant. it's so satisfying it's like doing binary long division and ending up with an integer. these, and many other ridiculous sentences.

i think part of the cube's success is the balance between how easy it looks and how hard it actually is (more on this below). solving the cube always seems somehow attainable, but yet the solution remains slightly out of reach. it also has a brilliant and rewarding learning curve, it allows you to start with your own micro goals (solving a side, etc) and increase the difficulty at your own pace. and if you get stuck you can try from another angle, since there are so many different ways for a solution to be broken down.

another, perhaps stronger appeal, is how easily and successfully the puzzle can me altered and modified. imagine the rubik's cube as LUCA at the centre of rapidly exploding puzzle tree, each branch adding new, interesting, and often more complicated varieties of combination puzzles - higher orders, different axis, deeper cuts, corner/edge turning, shape modifications, bandaging, etc.

a sub-heading: the difficulty of the cube

part of what is so interesting about the cube's mechanism is why it's so hard to solve (ignoring the fact that it's not that hard to solve, sorry). there is always talk about the rubik's cube having an extremely high number of permutations, which is of course true, but this has nothing to do with the difficultly of the puzzle, otherwise a 5x5x5 cube would be considerably harder than a standard rubik's cube, but it's not (and neither does it have only one solved state, btw, but nevermind that). the number of permutations affects only the time (or number of moves) it might take to solve a cube, not the difficulty. for example, setting a very long series of random binary digits to zero is trivial if you have an operator that allows you to flip one bit at a time. the fundamental difficulty comes from the proportion of the puzzle that is shifted or transformed by your basic move/twist.

the shape of the puzzle adds to this difficulty, both in terms of how pieces are moved in 3D space and that you can only ever see half of it. understanding how you're manipulating the puzzle requires a good mental picture of it (be it consciously or unconsciously), much more so than with a 2D puzzle. although a good counter argument to this might be topological analogues, since that geometry is even less familiar. and maybe this contains another clue as to the rubik's cube appeal - the mix of the familiar (yay, a cube) and the obscure (but it mutates in terrifying directions).

the structure of the puzzle is also clever in that it disguises the actual problem that you're trying to solve. you're tricked into matching colours and solving sides, when instead you should be isolating and manipulating the smallest number of pieces possible. this is the basis of the puzzle - minimizing what you swap or orientate. when you begin solving a cube you can ignore the vast majority of the pieces, since for now they're happy to remain in chaos - their placement is unimportant. but as more of the cube's pieces are moved into their correct place you will always be reduced to using non-disruptive 'fundamental' moves.

ignoring the center pieces, which is easy enough with a standard rubik's cube, your two 'fundamental' moves are swapping the position of three pieces or rotating two pieces (without disturbing the rest of the cube, obviously). this is the least you can do. once you've figured out how to perform those operations you've practically solved the cube, even if you haven't. and this is why looking for solutions on the internet won't help you understand the cube. following algorithms enables you to unscramble your cube, but for me half of the fun is understanding how these moves are constructed. the ideas and reasons behind an algorithm that rotates corners (for example) are much more intuitive than the algorithm itself.

the next layer of 'meta-puzzle' is combining these moves with easier and less precise twist combinations into sequences that make solving the cube easier, quicker, or more logical. it's possible to solve the cube by placing all the edge pieces first and then solving the corners, but this method is far from efficient. the classic beginner method begins by creating a cross on your first face, then placing the correct corner pieces onto that face, then the four edge pieces of the second layer, then the edge pieces of the final layer, etc. if you've solved the cube yourself then that should sound much more familiar than some nonesense like 'F2L'. moving switfly on..

some quick numbers that blow my mind - the algorithm to rotate two corner pieces without changing any other pieces requires 14 twists (six for each rotation and two for 'piece substitution'), but the rubik's cube god number is 20, with most permutations requiring only 18 twists.

another sub-heading: the variations of the cube

for me, and this is my justification for having so many puzzles, the fun begins when your start playing with the mechanism and structure of the puzzle. one of the coolest rubik's cube variations is the void cube. the first reason it's brilliant is the engineering. if you've ever dismantled a rubik's cube you'll know it's built around a three axis core (which is why the centres never change position relative to each other), and without the core the whole cube would fall apart. yet the void cube has no core, and therefore no centres to guide you as to which face is which (a 4x4x4 cube has exactly the same complication). you won't notice this is a problem until the very end, when suddenly you have a single edge piece that's orientated the wrong way. so even though there are no centres, their placement is still important. and this is the parity error - your phantom centres aren't correctly aligned with the faces.

shape modifications are fun for similar reasons. by rotating the cubic shape around the axis by 45 degrees you create what's known as a fisher cube. four of the cube's centre pieces have become edges and will now require correct orientation. likewise four edge pieces have now become flat centres. different pieces now have different requirements, so slightly different methods are needed to solve the cube. also, since the corner pieces are no longer all the same shape, and neither are all the edge pieces, when the cube is scrambled it shape shifts. another simple shape shifting cube is the mirror cube, created by transposing the centre of the cube and making each piece a different height, length and depth. it's easier to image search it than it is to explain it.

another standard cube variation is the 'skweb' (named by douglas hofstadter, of all people). this is mechanically very different to the rubik's cube, not least because it is corner turning (4 axis) and has floating centres that can switch places relative to each other. despite having fewer pieces and generally being much quicker to solve (even by luck sometimes, if you know the basic start moves), i think it's harder to solve than a rubik's cube, mainly because it's not possible to move a single piece onto a different layer. with a rubik's cube you can easily isolate a piece by rotating it from the top layer onto the bottom layer where it can then be re-orientated as required. all that's necessary to 'fix' the cube is to undo the moves you just performed but with a different piece from the top layer. in terms of spoilers, me telling you that is worse than any L,R,F2,B2,U2,D2 algorithm you could read on the internet (i just made that up, btw). compared with a rubik's cube, each twist of the skweb is more disruptive, shifting a greater percentage of the total pieces. it's also worth noting that the skweb only has two layers, since it's cut so deeply that each axis goes through the middle of the cube, splitting it in two.

and i haven't even mentioned the megamix (a dodecahedron, created simply by adding an extra side to each face), the latch cube (certain pieces can only be rotated in a set direction), gear cubes (um, with gears), helicopter cubes (edge turning), or my current favourite - the bermuda cubes (heavily bandaged cubes with larger centres that occasionally enable 45degree twists). the list could go for a long time.

final sub-heading: why i don't like speedcubing

one last thing, people always ask me what my best time is. and i don't even know. it's not particularly impressive, either way, and mainly because i'm just not interested in speedcubing. i like to relax with my cubes. they're there to look pretty and be pondered upon, solved in the middle of the night when i can't sleep. speedcubing is all about matching patterns to memorised algorithms, and to be honest i think that's just boring.

i also have a theory on the ever improving world record. speedcubing algorithms must be well refined by now, with little room for improvement, and there can only be so much advancement in technology to improve the cubes mechanics (i have no idea of the rules that govern what cubes you can use in competition). it's possible that people are getting faster, but this can't be based on long-term practice, since the record holders are not getting older (perhaps cube obsession is beginning younger?). my suspicion is that the decreasing record time is due to it being based on an average of three solves. obviously, not all scrambled permutations are equally difficult, some are much easier and quicker to solve than others, and so each year there's another chance of getting an easier set of cubes to solve (obviously the chance becomes less and less over time as easier combinations are used). this might be completely wrong, but like i said already, speedcubing isn't very interesting for me.

and you might think that'd help me understand that twisty/combination puzzles aren't particularly very intersting to many people, especially not enough to make them read almost 2000 words on the subject. but nevermind.

24.02.2012: at night i'm trudging around vilnius. in the dark, in the snow, and in the most unsuitable shoes i could have not planned to wear. but on the first night it's so cold my feet don't actually get wet. it's not until the sludge comes, and then the rain, that i'm squelching around in wet paper shoes. but whilst it's cold and the sky is full of ice i'm happy and everything is so pretty.

so we eat strudel. because the food is cheap here and extremely rich. if i lived here i would never go to a supermarket, i would eat out three times a day. except everything contains cheese curd and comes with cream sauce. i'd love to complain, but every restaurant and cafe i've been in (and i've been in a lot) has had excellent vege options. most places even have a vegetarian section in the menu. i couldn't be happier. with a plate of vegetable tempura sushi (yeah, what?) for under three euros and a cold beetroot soup that you'd mistake for pepto bismol until you tried it.

the craziest place we visited is the milky way restaurant, and not just because it's halfway up the TV tower - hovering in the low clouds like a lost soviet UFO:

we're the only customers up there, which adds to the strange atmosphere. the decor is more suited to an 80's disco than anything else. and i'm almost surprised when the waiter isn't on rollerskates.

it's quite far out of the city and the people i'm with hate this area. full of so many ugly buildings left behind by the soviet union. they don't understand why i want to take photographs (maybe i don't either). they even tell me not to show anyone the pictures. i find something aesthetically pleasing about them, i can't help it, but when i'm asked if i'd like to live in one of i feel bad for even thinking they look a bit cool. well, that's a different matter entirely.

back at the hotel i have a long bath and a quick shower. i dodge the mini-bar. i get dry itchy under the clean sheets and it's too quiet. and then for the first time in my life i naturally wake up alert at 7am, which is more like 6am CET. i'm adapting. and the breakfast is excellent - beans and egg and pancakes and fruit. coffee to keep me warm during the walk to work through the snow. all of us business mean sitting alone at our tables, it's so sad.

and my poor shoes. i'm a fool for them. but i can manage, because they dry whilst not in use, at work on the radiator and during the night on the towel warmer in my bathroom. and it works well until i knock one of them into the toilet bowl in the morning.

and now i'm home again and the air is full of spring. walking from the metro if felt as if my holiday had just begun. i've been working the last three days and have the next five off.

20.02.2012: i'm in lithuania this week on business, incase you needed to know. it's not my first business trip ever, but it is the first where i get swimming pool and sauna access. all this should be very exciting, but what i'm most looking forward to is the sleep. i'm desperate. it's got so bad that last night i dreamt about the sleep i'll be getting. and i'm tired right now to even write about it.

but anyway, all usual rules apply.

12.02.2012: it'd be a perfect summer day if only it wasn't bitterly cold. so sharp and beautiful out that marika gets a bonus lap around the lake, even though she'd fallen asleep before even leaving the apartment. every moment outside feels so special. probably because anymore i just don't get out enough.

and then i dreamt i was committing suicide (i tried to write that in past tense, but of course it makes no sense), which isn't as dramatic as it sounds. or actually it was, but in ways not immediately obvious when hopelessly diving down a stairwell into the painless rising flames of a shuttle in take-off. i woke up slowly and full of calm. but the feeling sticks. the thoughts that come whilst crisping up in a universe that's rapidly condensing down into a singular nothing - they don't disappear so quickly.

and the months fly by, one long night at a time.

it feels almost impossible to get anything done. at the end of the day, after the girls have both gone to bed, all i can bring myself to do is watch doctor who (which i'm enjoying despite the constant rule changes, disregard for logic and plot holes). but somehow i manage to learn songs and tame chaos. build a whole new set from random chords and blips. little of this is my work, of course. but i still have to follow the mental processes through. the bass lines practically write themselves, or my fingers do, in a fretboard tirade of sadomasochism.

and meanwhile in other universes, kenneth and jolle are doing a great job of organising and hosting the intentional bum episode 4#. all i need is an amp full of thunder and rage, distortion glistening and crackling in the space between me and the audience. club mate and burning fingertips. one's too many ten's not enough. that brutal fucking sound, and i don't know why i love noise so much. stepping off the stage into that silence, it's like the whole world is suddenly under water. we survived - our ears a small price to pay.

anyway, didn't mean to write so much crap, i just got little else to say these days.

31.01.2012: on numerous recommendations i've started watching doctor who (finally something with a reasonable ratio of good female characters). studying the episode list grilly recommended, it looks like i'm mostly watching the moffat episodes (perhaps it's a ploy so that i can read his moffat blog post, i don't know), starting with 'blink'.

oh, that's where the weeping angels in minecraft come from..

so far i'm quite impressed. as i remember it from my childhood (watching a mix of old and then new episodes) the stories never used time as a plot device enough. perhaps i was too young to understand it, but the time travel always seemed to be more of an excuse to tell random stories from any era than anything else. from what i've seen so far (only a couple of episodes, chosen because they're either good or would appeal to me, so no bias there then) i'm quite hopeful that time is more integral to the plots.

otherwise what's the point of watching them, right?

anyway, there's a few things i want to say about 'blink' (um, spoilers). because about halfway through i gave up on the plot. doctor who is a time traveller, unless he is forever stuck in the past there is no reason why he can't sort out all these shenanigans himself, with no need to involve some chick with a funky donnie darko related name (that's me pushing references too hard). but then i started thinking about time loops, and how every non-paradoxical time loop needs a first iteration (er, a primer). perhaps this is that story - early iterations of the doctor being stuck back in time, how he escapes by sending messages forward to a point from which he can be reunited with this time machine and escape linearity again. and then another but, if he succeeded why would he bother fixing it further? it's not like he would save anyone's life, and all the people involved seemed happy with their outcomes. so the story remains intact. and i'm happy too.

you may have noticed i'm having new thoughts as i'm writing this and my original point is slowly being eroded way to the point of nonrecognition.

question - is there a reason there can't be 'two' doctors involved in a single story? something about rips in the space/time/fabric of the universe, or some other anti-deus-ex-machina? has he never been pulled in to save himself from certain death? or does the doctor try to avoid interfering with time? (in which case none of it makes sense anyway.) are there rules here? or is it arbitrary? the problem i might have with 'blink' is how it seems to mix time 'theories' (and no, calling it time "wibbly" or whatever does not help).

anymore, an effect can't be its only possible cause for me to be satisfied with a story. the paradox needs to be iteratively constructed into the stable time loop that we're almost exclusively presented with in such stories. this is the "the permutations are endless" clause. the line that spirals into a circle. and it's the spiral that's interesting.

in 'blink' the doctor was lucky enough to have been given the key to unravelling the escape in his past (the story's future). the spiral is the evolution of the document he receives. and it works because for the majority of the episode the cause and effect is linear - people in the past effect the story only after they've been sent back there. however, there's also the easter egg messages and what i can only refer to as the 'wibbly excuse'. it's a chicken/egg problem in ways that the chicken/egg problem can't even fathom (which is all about definitions, btw).

i guess this post is falling apart because i'm saying one part of the story is ok whilst another is an unexceptable paradox, and only because i don't understand how the events might arise from unseen non-paradoxical time iterations (if this was hinted at or acknowledged i could let it slide).

all that complaining over something i thought was quite good? well, there's more. for instance, what's with the ducking at the start? who threw that rock (or whatever it was)? the scene makes no sense at all. does it relate to a previous or future episode?

also, why were the angels running around holding the key to the tardis? if they're aware of their weakness (presuming they are, since they cover their own eyes) then you'd think they'd at least keep the key in a pocket so no one could steal it.

then at the end the angels are left staring at each and we're led to believe they'll be stuck like that forever-ish. however, we're also shown that darkness allows them to move freely without observation, and how long would that light bulb remain illuminated? maybe they can see in the dark. but then all is required is for someone to block their lines of sight. nevermind. it's quite a weak trap, is all. maybe that's the point.

as an answer to some of my own questions, if that was a trap by the doctor then it surely would have required many time iterations to perfect (i suppose i'm thinking of something like the party scene in primer). many of the plot points in the episode would have been set up precisely for this purpose, and they couldn't have been constructed in a single take. is this subtext, or am i looking too deeply into this for the author's intention? (by intention i guess i mean 'attention paid to time lines and a solid theory of time travel'.) either way, more postulating along those lines would have been nice.

28.01.2012: i've mentioned the bechdel test before, probably multiple times even, but it's so easy to forget. yesterday i began craving for a movie with substantial and meaningful female roles, something i'd neglected to think about when choosing the shitty movies i've decided to watch recently, most of which have been fragmented over various late nights, when i'm all on my own and drinking whiskey very slowly. times like these all i want is a crappy comic adaptation, so really it's my own fault. it's like choosing churros over sachertorte (dead fucking easy).

but if i'm actually going to watch captain america or green lantern? shame on me. in my defence at least i'm not paying for it (hey movie industry, if you want my money then make something worth paying for, as opposed to the offensive bay-esque hollow spectacle that apparently needs to be seen on the big screen bullshit). rise of the planet of the apes was worse because it had qualities (i.e. wasn't completely shit), but just not a large enough budget for two female actresses, or what?

first thought - "i can't believe they they can get away with making movies with only a single woman in, especially if she's only there as a love interest and has absolutely no substance or relevance"
counter thought - "of course they can get away with it - it's only stupid guys that go and see these movies"
realisation - "this is horrible feedback loop"

focusing on comics, it's as if the 'genre' has defined itself into a corner, a particular ugly misogynistic one. comics have eaten themselves. imagine if apple suddenly announced that their products were for men only and all ipods and ipads and igivesashits will now come with naked women plastered all over them, no exceptions. you kill half your market.

and meanwhile, what? DC and marvel think it's the medium that women aren't interested in?

having said all that. the mainstream comics industry has been almost exclusively been driven by boys, and these fucking nerds clearly don't know a thing about women. we're probably better off without them trying to write realistic female characters. but then we're suddenly reminded about sam kieth.

either way, you can't just blame the source material. hollywood seems to spend most of its time wiping its arse with comics instead of reading and understanding them. green lantern was a good example of this. firstly, why is hal jordan the green lantern? alan scott was the original (golden age) green lantern, kyle rayner and guy gardner have also been 'the' green lantern, and john stewart is argueably the most well-known green lantern due his prominence in the justice league cartoons. hal jordan is a ridiculous choice, especially given that the main villian in the movie is parallax, who was infact hal jordan himself (originally hal turned supervillian, then later retconned into a demon who possessed him). and i suppose it's too much to ask the film's main role be given to jade (alan scott's daughter), who also spent time as one of earth's green lanterns.

i guess there was the ghost world movie. but um, nevermind.

final thought - "how the hell do the oscars manage to get enough actresses for the best female actress catagory?" (incidentally, in 2011 i'd seen three of the films in the best actress category, but only one of the films in the best male category.)

ok, that was a bit too rambling, but nevermind that either. grilly has already covered this kind of thing much better than me.

24.01.2012: i'm about to rage-quit facebook. the final straw is the tag removal process, which now requires four clicks and all kinds of bullshit options. um, let me illustrate..

first of all you have to find the remove tag link, which took me an extra ten seconds than normal since apparently clicking "remove" wont work anymore, which is instead some arse to do with the photo appearing on my profile page (yeah sorry, i don't read all garbage, i shouldn't need to). the "remove tag" link is 'hidden' further down the page (it's below the fold on my browser), and instead of removing the tag and having done with, it brings up this ridiculous window:

the options are not sufficient - i need a "mu". why should i have to say whether this is a picture of me or not? i don't want to give facebook more information about the photo, i want to remove all information. if i don't want to confirm it (yes it is actually a picture of me), i have to claim it's something against facebook's terms and conditions. lie, basically.

i am a reluctant and passive user of facebook. i'd rather it didn't exist, but since it appears to be the only means by which i can communicate with certain people (and several of my bands have message boards on facebook) i'm 'forced' to have a profile. i absolutely don't want any information about me on facebook. nothing at all. so tagging me in photos is a prime way to piss me off, especially now.

the easiest solution is probably to just unfriend/ban/whatever the people who keep doing it, but nothing about facebook's interface and policies is simple anymore. i stopped trying to keep track of their labyrinthine ways years ago. the whole thing is a fucking joke. perhaps i should just keep clicking the "hate speech" option, that seems like the fairest thing to do.

and so in conclusion, perhaps i will just delete the whole thing. in as complete a way i have the ability to.

wait, wasn't anonymous going to do that on november 5th last year? oh nevermind

we just lost the racoon to the toilet.

21.01.2012: "these are the good old days" i keep telling people. but no one understands what i'm trying to say. maybe it's a bad sentence. nouns and adjectives need reconsidering. a substantial verb is required. fucked, if i know.

run-on blog posts. like i will ever finish anything at this rate. i wrote about four words every night between 20:00 and the time my brain shuts off. it doesn't help that i don't have anything to say. apart from the three long posts that actual have a point/theme and have been sitting half written for weeks now.

anyway. watching small creatures learn is just incredible. marika just grabbed the frog and pulled it, all by herself. after weeks of training. ribbit ribbit ribbit. except now she's just pulling it in rage.

i guess i'm training her a bit like a dog. with a bit of encouraging i can get her to grab my fingers when i hold them out above her and say "grab". when i then say "up" she pulls herself up into a sitting position. for about a week i'd been doing all the pulling, but now she anticipates it and pulls herself up with her own arms. i'm not pulling her up at all anymore, it's all her own work. it's brilliant. and it probably makes no difference what i'm actually saying to her, but it's fun anyway.

her best trick is falling asleep at 7pm precisely every evening. she's like clockwork. but for just one hour a day.

she's also being trained to put the sut/dummy into her mouth by grabbing it when i dangle it infront of her face. she's getting there, slowly but surely. also in the pipeline is 'thumbs up'.

"we have come to a point in history where we are losing both photographic recording mediums and iconic photographers", excellently put.

"let's open up this pit!"

11.01.2012: i am a bucket of sleeploss. a mouthful of knives. raindrops making metallic symphonies against the roofing. rhythms as old as the weather itself. the music of the spheres is chaos.

four in the morning and my mouth is 32 springs clamped tight in a vice. the tension goes from the back of the neck up to the top of the skull, then all the way down to the base of the spine. i'm waiting for that feeling when the water finally runs from your ear - the warm wet pop of resolution as the bubble of dullness suddenly clears and you can hear again.

my new favourite sport is racing against other parents' barnevogn in the courtyard - our child will sleep out longer than yours!

all of a sudden i'm totally entertained by baby videos. it may be tacky of me. but either way, you can't deny the cuteness of this girl being asked who her favourite is. that's what the internet was designed for (not cats).

and nicolas cage put it best when he said "oh no not the bees! not the bees!" - 30 japanese hornets kill a whole bunch of honey bees, in brutal bullet time. probably the actual best video i've seen in months, or longer. this is what happen when seperately evolved emergent behaviours collide. or when evolved behaviour meets something unnatural, like wolves slaughtering sheep flocks. or old people wandering around supermarkeys, how grilly put it.

also this collection of movie poster trends is great.

why did no one tell me rastamouse was a real thing?

01.01.2012: new years morning is for kid a, because seemingly being the only person in the world without a hangover never made the streets look so lonely. everyone's garbage, drained champagne bottles and firework carcasses, all lying in puddles in the road. and another danish tradition - rain on new years day. it's grey and dulled like you forgot days could be.

but i felt inspired and thought i'd do my own "best of 2011", except i couldn't find a starting point. did i see any films worth talking about? finish any good books? did i listen to much new music? did i see many gigs? (actually i think i played more gigs than i attended, if that's at all mutually exclusive). i could probably list my favourite youtube videos of the year, but i'd like to give the start of 2012 a little bit more respect than that. especially since it'll be our last.

don't take the end of the world so literally. thing of it more like the death card in tarot.

anyway, i guess i've had more important things going on. and if my guitar playing can lull my daughter to sleep my life is somewhat complete.

now i have a sudden urge to watch the neverending story. or read it.

22.12.2011: there's something cosy about cycling to work in the dark. like cycling the inside of a pearl buried deep below the ocean. the silence of a beast not quite yet waking. and everyone in the street is there with a purpose, even it's a rubbish one like trying to earn a living. and it's completely unlike cycling back home in the dark again - eight hours later and you've missed the seven hours of sunlight. it's still pretty out across the harbour, the sunset gradients and the moon still hovering out there somewhere (does it even dip below the horizon during decemeber? amongst other stupid questions), but it's a sad and tired beauty.

i guess what i'm most reminded of is the dual societies from chuck palahniuk's rant (proof that writing a few uninteresting and repetative books does not mean you've "lost it", not quite yet).

some more random stuff to fill up your christmas holidays with, if you even got any this year:

if you haven't seen it yet, the girl complaining about pink princesses and other coloured superheroes is one of my new favourite videos. much better viewing than the masturbating dog. she will be president one day. i hope.

i've travelled many times with crimethinc books, they're very good for reading on the move (in terms of structure and content), and that simply carrying a book or other political materials can get you stopped from boarding a plane is somewhat terrifying. but hey, we all hate ryanair anyway, as if that was the point at all.

(too much) content from the chaos communication conference, unfortunately probably all essential viewing/listening.

it's a shame the heath ledger photo is a fake though.

finally, it would have been somewhat of an honour to receive just an honourable mention in Chris TT's top 10 list, but top of his best played gig list? that's just some magical shit right there. (the trick is to give your guests the whiskey bottle and let them get on with it.)

did i really just say "in a proto-hipster kind of way"?

22.12.2011: this lack of sleep throws me a kind of sadness that only the silversun pickups can simultaneously understand and remedy. like a tangible thing that needs playing with. something that needs dragging into the sunlight and skimming through the air. and it's just fine.

this girl protects me like armour. transcendental and irrational.

looking at photographs of myself at her age, for the first time i can see the younger version of me as a different and solid entity. my memories have become third person. i was a boy i could have touched and talked to, if only time wasn't quite so cruel. and it breaks my fucking heart.

"inside of me and such a part of you", etc.

but look at how happy i was. this crazy child. so much joy and sadness all mixed up, and of course none of it could makes any damn sense. how could it when you can't pin reason onto a single thing. i may have come across differently, but i was never a child who thought he had it all figured out.

this rambling all stems for a project i started a few weeks ago, some misguided attempt at recording all of my earliest memories. this is something i'll write about at great lengths another time, when it's finished, which will probably be never. so nevermind.

18.12.2011: the office christmas dinner is something i always both look forward to and dread just a little. getting plastered at the expense of your employer is always good, but having them there at the same time? it's not that i lose astute-ness, if that's a word, it's just that i stop caring so much. unless that's the same thing. apparently i needed telling "dude, don't talk about that here" quite a lot. but no worries.

so that's my yearly schnapps quota filled - glasses topped up before they're even finished. all in the name of physically punishing your employees in the only legal way. and i had it especially tough, since the food was as traditionally danish as you can get. my main course was rye bread with butter and raw onion. and i'm not even joking. a few days earlier my boss had enquired about the vegetarian options for me and the restaurant had replied with "maybe there will be some cheese", but that only came out with the dessert.

it's my own fault, i should have followed through on my threat to go out for pizza.

there was also a pre-dinner surprise activity. isn't the thought of that just enough to make you feel a little sick? especially if it involves guns. at first i was extremely unimpressed. don't get me wrong, i'm not a pacifist, i just don't really like the idea of me shooting guns. but there's nothing worse than a kill-joy at the christmas party, so i just grumbled about us not being allowed to drink alcohol yet (after a painful five hour meeting some of us were in serious need to get drunk) and got on with it.

it turns out all that time playing point blank in the birmingham student union building didn't just get me my name at the top of the scoreboard for all time, it made me a mean shot in real life too:

or at least i am when i've got a rest for the rifle barrel. nevermind. in the wild we have trees to lean against.

14.12.2011: listening to the crackle of the rain over the baby monitor. little baby noises. dum dum diddy. a constant humm from somewhere up in the roofing, a drill or saw, lost in the wind and static.

"spiritual distress should last at least ten minutes at a time."

this paragraph (from the wiki) says so much about rugby:

"The first, named Chiming Clock, was originally designed to chime and play music on the hour and half-hour as a tortoise and hare raced around the dials, reenacting Aesop's fable. The clock has since suffered issues in timing the sequence, now occurring almost randomly. The second companion clock, following a train theme to symbolise Rugby's famous railway, was installed on the opposite side of the shopping centre, but was soon dismantled and scrapped to make way for shop extensions."

also, why does rugby shopping centre have it's own wiki page?

i'm missing the days when i actually had stuff to write/blog about.

13.12.2011: i've been saving up all year (since last new years, when i bought myself a bottle of brewdog's paradox smokehead and a bottle of mikkeller's beer geek brunch weasel) for the black tokyo horizon. i couldn't resist the collaboration that includes my two favourite knobby pretentious breweries. i'm somewhat scared to drink it. the question is, who wants to join me and what can you bring to the table? (insert evil smiling emoticon of your choice right here).

i actually have an insane amount of beer stockpiled. what with the influx of all the christmas beers (i hate to say it but brewdog's is by far the best so far, especially for the price, although i haven't touched the norrebro bryghus or mikkeller beers yet) and a few too many trips down to fish n beer. i got my smokey stouts and i don't want to waste them on a non-special evening. (but laurence, every evening is special.)

i'm also on a bit of an autumn/winter root vegetable roll. first i magicked up an amazing parsnip, butternut squash and pumpkin gratin/crumble. yesterday it was creamey mash and homemade mega-burgers, with the cheapest bakedbeans danish money can buy. tonight we'll be having roasted potatos, jordskokker, parsnips, butternut squash and pumpkin (again). a cascading dinner menu. it seems like ages since i've really been into making food - you forget how brilliant it is when you're busy working it nine to five (or eight to four, in my case).

12.12.2011: no more cubes for me. not this year at least. with the acquisition of a latch cube and a dayan bermuda earth cube, which is unnerving to look at, i now feel complete. so who wants to join me for a cube party? my max capacity is 40 (unless you bring you own cube), and then only if someone doesn't mind being assigned the dreadful barbie cube (kenneth perhaps?). sign up quickly!

i now have cubes by all the big names in cubing that you've probably never heard of (lanlan, witeden, dayan, mefferts, etc), but the coolest cube i've played with recently is the one i bought anne and jens's as a moving-in present (because every respectable household needs a rubik's cube) - a hungarian cube made in the original rubik's cube factory. it's not that it turns particularly smoothly, or has perfect colours and durable stickers, but it just feels right. it makes me miss playing with my old original cube (currently part of the cube-mobile).

um, on a more serious note though - don't touch my cubes.

photos coming not soon enough..

10.12.2011: i almost forgot to mention that the regulars played in helsingor the other day (a thursday, just to be awkward), probably because i didn't have much to say about it. safety dance, that's about all you need to know. but it seemed to go well enough. in some strange way i miss the punk venues, trash strewn around everywhere, so many empty beer bottles and graffiti'd walls, a huge mac sitting ready for anybody to use in the band room.

any venue that pays in ale no.16 is good by me.

you can dance if you want to, etc. it was the best song i've played on stage since sesame street, but it's not exactly the best song for a set opener. apparently we didn't care, but my hand did. there's no way you can be warm for that amount of disco octaves. but anyway. punk and all that.

the marika update: she's really beginning to discover her hands now, mostly through the act of trying to eat them. the cleverest thing is how she's learnt to put her right hand infront of her mouth. this serves two purposes, if a sut/dummy is in her mouth then she holds it in, if there isn't one in her mouth then she can suck her hand. she'll be moving on to rubik's cubes soon.

05.12.2011: a short while ago some guy was commenting to me how maternity/paternity leave isn't fair, that it's our own decision to have children and the state shouldn't give us money to be away from work and look after our child. or, since he's decided to not have children, he should also be entitled to the same money. i'm having trouble reconstructing his arguments here, because they don't make sense to me, but he was being serious, and you get the gist of it - why should i be given his hard earned tax-payer money for something i've choosen to do. or in other words, only the wealthy should have children (i think it was explicitly said, "if you can't afford to have kids then you shouldn't have kids").

had i been quick-witted enough i might have pointed out that he did receive the same money - when he was born. the state isn't giving me money for my benefit, it's for the little future citizen i'm caring for. but fuck it - these people can't be reasoned with.

this is the same guy that told me the most fucked up thing would be someone being both vegetarian and gay (he'd obviously forgot about the muslims that day). i'm not sure what he was thinking broadcasting such thoughts in the direction of one vegetarian and one homosexual, but nevermind.

and on the subject of vegetarianism, it's become the acid test for the quality of the nurseries we've been visiting. if you want someone to bring their baby to your kindergarten you don't tell them their dietary choices aren't suitable for their child. the place we saw on thursday told us that they cater for religion but not lifestyle choices, whatever the fuck the difference is. i didn't like how she tried to pass their inability to provide adequate nutrition as a failing onto us as parents. beans and pulses aren't difficult. i'm just glad that i was brought up vegetarian, which means that if anyone wants to judge us for raising our daughter on bark and foliage at least i can say i'm not inflicting anything upon her that i haven't already suffered myself.

02.12.2011: so i just found out that mark linkous is dead. asshole shot himself in the chest and ruined my fucking day. not to be a fatuous jerk, or whatever the word is. i don't know, maybe it isn't news for you, since it happened a while ago, but.. gr. just fuck it.

a song comes up on random and suddenly another hero is dead.

now i have to listen to weird sisters and saturday on repeat until i simply can't take it anymore.

what they'll say about him - he played great keyboards on horses teeth.

and talking about dead people, atari teenage riot are playing in copenhagen tonight but i can't really be bothered to go. i don't know if it's an indication of how lame i am or lame their last album was. i'm sure it'll be great, but i just can't take the posers right now. i'd rather hang out with friends and play/fix my guitar. spend an hour trying to get my daughter to sleep.

"Jeremy Clarkson calls for strikers to be shot, gets a laugh. Someone calls for a riot to start on Facebook, gets 4 years in prison". yeah, and something about blowing stuff up. how leftwing.

25.11.2011: sometimes you get so distracted in the process of looking after a baby that you completely forget where you are in your life. i'll take for me to be at work, messing around in the kitchen or something, and it'll suddenly hit me that i've got a daughter waiting for me at home. it's amazing.

someone might ask me how it's going, and all i can really say is "i'm a father, how bad could it possibly be?".

anyway, some of this might be imagined, but i swear that every time i show marika our reflection in the mirror, she looks at us, grins and does as much of a laugh as she's currently capable of, then quickly buries her head in my chest. our daughter is being coy. it's a little bit more than i can deal with.

that was going to be a throw away comment, but the more i think about it the weirder it is. she doesn't behave like that when i show her anything else. she clearly demonstrates recognition of some kind (be it a face, or specifically my face, i doubt she could possibly recognise her own face) by smiling and making eye contact, but then refuses to keep looking. she'll happily look and communicate with me for extended periods of time normally, so it's either that she gets confused because there's appparently two of me, or it's her own face that bothers her. she's happy with faces normally, be it strangers or otherwise, so if that's the case then it must be a specific thing about her face she reacts to. could she actually recognise her own self already? or is something much simpler like a response to the feedback in the mirror? or the dimensions of the face maybe? perhaps babies don't like looking at other babies. i sure never liked looking much at babies.

i don't know, but either way it's fun to play with. a bit like blowing air in her face.

right, enough with all the baby crap now.

19.11.2011: one of the best things about paternity leave is that we have time to go do crazy things like baby swimming. to be honest i was initially a little skeptical about the whole thing, but for what reasons i've no idea. maybe i was worried about trauma and awkwardness, but the worries were unfounded. marika loves the water, floating around all weightless and giddy. she was completely comfortable the whole time we were there, despite the noise and all the action going on around her. she was even happy with a quick dunk. so consider swimming fully recommended for your underdeveloped whoopsters.

it's just a shame you're not allowed to take photos in the pool, kind of. they should get a dedicated and registered photographer in there, they could make a fortune.

and you know what else you could make a fortune from? baby straight jackets. it may sound gruesome, but what's the difference between that and a woombie, except one of them makes you look like a horrible parent?

other things that make me laugh - photographs where the baby's head is bigger than the parent's.

also we finally got a baby monitor, another genius purchase. it seems like i have a new favourite toy every day, and this one isn't even cubic. the only problem with it is that the baby unit isn't battery powered, it needs a wall socket, which might be just fine in england (where we ordered it from), but in denmark people have these things so their baby can sleep outside. groan, etc. we're looking into making a battery pack for it, but for the time being we have an extension cord going out of the window. it's a new and strange (also liberating) experience, and it makes me wonder how many other people are consantly listening in on the courtyard. it suddenly becomes a different and more interconnected space - even when it looks unoccupied it might be host to all manner of different interactions.

and she dances to music, omfg. splurge.

also what's important is that day-old naan bread makes for amazing nutroast, especially if it's helped along with celeriac and cottage cheese. nutroasts are factually the ultimate food stuff, you can whisk one out of whatever leftovers and random food you have knocking around and they're always brilliant. well, at least mine are.

17.11.2011: i've tried to tell you before that frank miller's misogynistic and fascistic stories aren't satirical, the dark knight ain't no starship trooper, but if you didn't believe me you could always read what miller has to say about the occupy movement.

contrast this to grant morrison's new superman (the action comics restart) who is out busting corporate ass, "i'll put him down just as soon as he makes a full confession to someone who still believes the law works the same for rich and poor alike". then later superman's being defended by a group of people he saved as they were being forcibly evicted by wrecking ball, he's the new hero of the under classes. woohoo!

anyway, nevermind all that. how's it going with marika? i guess it's going great, especially when i'm not banging her head into things.

the poor thing though, she must get so freaked out. every time she falls asleep she wakes up in a completely different place. sometimes not even in the same country.

also i'm worried that when marika is on the floor in the bathroom (on the changing mat of course), she's the only person who can see under the sink cupboard, and we're filling her world with spiders, gigantic dust mites, and other horrors of the darkness.

but best of all is her ever increasing vocal ability/attempts. my new favourite thing is watching her try to form shapes with her mouth and push out different oooh and aaah sounds. perhaps i should start reading her to sleep, rather than humming or singing. i've never sang so much moronic and meaningless crap in my life. but all our kids books are in danish, and i don't think joey comeau's new book is entirely appropriate.

"i'll go the health shop and they'll be all like oooh a baby and i'll be all like oooh yay a baby and then we'll all be like a little bit sick in our mouths."

10.11.2011: probably the best thing ever is during a dinner party when a small sneeze comes from underneath the other end of the table. choooo.

or when my daughter starts making cooing noises at me in the middle of night after i've fed her. the whole thing is somewhat mindblowing.

and she's started sucking her hand, which means she's learning - moving certain muscles brings something towards her mouth. hurray!

norway was nice. it was good to be able to get on a ferry and travel somewhere far away. a small victory. we can deal with all this stuff. we can take our family away from home for an extended period and manage. we can eat buffet dinners and be good house guests. take the baby for walks in the forest. also it helped having a nice room on the way back, with a double bed, tv and a fridge stocked with champagne. morning buffet included (but not the christmas buffet the night before).

then on tuesday i joined julie and marika for "baby singing", which is one of the most surreal things i've witnessed in a long time. all these babies lying on the floor in a circle and their mothers all singing crazed norwegian songs at them. but fun, of course.

a nice little gods' eye view compilation (i moved the apostrophe myself), and now i want to see all of those films. they missed a great scene from la haine though.

and incase you didn't believe that everything is connected, "The catchier name Skewb was coined by Douglas Hofstadter in his Metamagical Themas column".

03.11.2011: just letting you know that we're in norway for a last-minute long weekend, visiting friends and running away into the forest, etc.

it's also a bit of a test run at travelling with marika, and so far it's been (literally) plain sailing. but then, how difficult could it possibly be taking a baby on a ferry anyway?

also i'm celebrating starting paternity leave, which i'll be doing every thursday for at least the next seven and a half months. a three day work week is the way we should be living our lives, we really don't need to be working more.

anyway, i guess i should go an eat a grandiosa and drink some glogg or something.

01.11.2011: my new favourite joke, "why can't computer scientists tell the difference between halloween and christmas? because oct 31 = dec 25". you have to love the math puns. i can't believe i hadn't seen this before

anyway. i have a theory about why babies are so unruly at their bedtime, and it's that their circadian rhythms are intially rotated 180 degrees from our own - they have jetleg.

the thinking behind this is that when in the womb, during the day the constant motion soothes the baby to sleep. when it comes to the mum's bedtime the womb becomes still, and this is when the baby 'wakes up'. since the baby's main sleeping time is during our day time, and it's main waking time is our bedtime, it kind of makes sense that once the baby is born it wants to be most awake just as we want it to sleep.

there are maybe more plausible explanations as to why babies sleep better during the day and scream all night (e.g. parents being more noticeably around and active during the day, as opposed to being quiet and removed during the night), but they're not quite as fun.

30.10.2011: since it's halloween (or thereabouts), here are some photos from the shuffler gig in vesterbro a few weeks ago:

and there will be a demo soon too (recording today!).

29.10.2011: i don't know when it happened, that youtube suddenly became an exciting archive of old music videos (i guess the ones record labels can't be bothered to protect their copyrights over?), but it really is something. here are some brutally amazing videos of sleater kinney performing in 96 and 97 - last song, one more hour and call the doctor (and they never lost it either).

also my new favourite song - igorr's cruciform daschund, discovered thanks to one (actually two) of grilly's mixes (essential).

now i just need to go listen to william shatner's cover of common people again (give it a chance).

finally, two photos that sum up copenhagen right now:

that will do.

26.10.2011: from the photographs you'd be forgiven for thinking our daughter was made of angelic stuff (liquidized, dehydrated, mixed with a bit of semen and breast milk or whatnot). however, i really don't want to be one of those people that make parenting sound so wonderful and peachey the whole damn time. "oh, our daughter she is such an angel, she sleeps when we want her to, eats her greens, never swears, and never shits herself at inappropriate times", etc.

actually, julie just read a book (possibly based on a blog) that was refreshingly rough around the edges. the author pumped milk in public toilets, drank the occasional beer, maybe dropped the baby a couple of times (i made that last bit up). lots of stress on buses, no walks in the park. it's only fair to other parents to express how difficult it can be at times.

yes (that was my desperate house wives impression, done with much venom - the series could be drastically improved by simply removing the word "yes").

marika's difficult time at the moment is about 19:00 to 22:00, which unfortunately coincides with what would otherwise be my 'quality' daughter time (at least until we can get her to sleep at a reasonable bedtime). i get home from work, and by the time we've all eaten and she's woken up she's in pissy mode. she's not difficult non-stop, there are calm pauses, but just as i think i've got her relaxed she'll start screaming again.

anyway, just saying. and actually last night was very easy. she was happy until about 19:30 when i fed her, then she got all angry at about 21:30, but it wasn't for too long and afterwards she slept straight away. i fed her again at about 02:30 and she slept brilliantly until her next feeding time (then it was daddy's turn to do all the good sleeping).

also, that most recent photograph, the one that is just too perfect, that was one of 100 photos taken in under two minutes. the trick to good baby photos is editing (and don't mistake my meaning for "manipulating"). the photos are all great, but the ones you see are a selection of over a thousand (about 3.68gb), and that count is after i've deleted all the blurry and redundant ones.

25.10.2011: three telling quotes about the tintin movie (lifted from a BBC article), not because i care, but because they say a lot about how the film industry views comics:

"In the comic books he's not a living, breathing person. In the film, every strand of his quiff moves"

"I've never seen such a realistic Tintin in my life. In the comics the characters don't look like people - they're surrealist drawings"

"To try and bring Tintin to a new generation of children, you have to present it to them in a way they understand. Steven Spielberg they understand; they understand 3D."

no comment really necessary, but comics are clearly a misunderstood resource that holywood is exploiting to the death. to push a metaphor, tintin is like cobalt (rare, with traces of it in everything) whilst all that marvel junk is the tar sands. either way it's bad for us.

that last quote claiming kids don't understand comics but do understand 3D cinema, which is also suggesting the film might bring a new audience to the books.. seriously, what the fuck?

i always hated billy elliot. prick.

21.10.2011: some nights i find myself walking around our apartment in circles. in the dark. i call this "walkies", in the patronising talking-to-a-dog kind of way. it'll take anywhere from 15 minutes to over an hour before marika's seemingly calmed down and ready to be put back into her bed. she'll stop squirming, her breathing will slow and become regular - finally she's asleep. so i'll look down, and in a sliver of pale streetlight coming in through the window there's a huge little eye staring back up at me.

i see the streetlights as fairgrounds.

we're finding our routine. it's mostly working for us. for my part i'm getting much more sleep, with the unintuitive outcome of it being that it's now much harder to get up in the morning. but we have our rhythms and they're improving all the time. and if they're not improving, well then they're getting easier to deal with.

and we'll spin out there and sleep.

what i can't wait for is starting my paternity leave. i think i might have worked myself out an extremely sweet deal, which means we'll be able to spend a lot more time drinking simple coffee in the local norwegian church with marika. i could write something about inoculating her against religion, but really it's all about the waffles.

18.10.2011: long before marika was born we made a decision that we wouldn't be putting photos of her onto the internets. she wouldn't have an email address and she would definitely not have a facebook fingerprint. i couldn't give you a precise reason why, it just feels like the right thing to do.

of course this doesn't mean we haven't been taking copious amounts of photographs that we want to share with everyone. and obviously this becomes a little frustrating, because how can we otherwise share them without forcing them into people's inboxes and down their throats (um, and via their eyes)?

so i did the obscenest thing and created her a blog, which sounds like exactly what we decided against. it's not public, but there's still a certain amount of irony in it. anyway, the principal idea behind it was to enable my parents to get semi-daily growth and development updates. and the point of me telling you this now is that it'd be nice if you also wanted to see the pictures, and sent me and email asking for access.

anyway, just saying. and mainly because i find it much easier to communicate my thoughts and feelings about this whole endeavor (and most everything else, thinking about it) through photography. but only because interpretive dance doesn't work so well over the internet.

the other thing you need to know is that i cooked up an awesome biryani last night (big thanks to mina for the fresh turmeric).

17.10.2011: one of the biggest misconceptions i had about baby care was the diapers. from what you see on TV you'd be forgiven for thinking nappy changing is a dreadful and grinding chore. but not even slightly. it's quick and it's easy, rarely messy at all, and there's barely even a bad smell (although maybe that's because she's still rocking the breast milk, i don't know).

the problem with diapers is primarily the amount of waste generated (also the cost isn't something to be ignored, but to that in a bit), and to deal with it you need a plan. our current tactic is a system that alternates between cloth diapers and disposables. being unable to decide/calculate which was economically or environmentally optimal we opted to go for both, however it suited us. so we have about ten cloth diapers which we use in succession during the day. once all of these are used up we switch to disposables for a day or two and the soiled cloths (mostly/hopefully just pissed in) all go into the washing machine. the cloth diapers need to be changed too often to be used at night, and if she hasn't dumped recently we'll switch to disposables as well, since the cloth diapers just aren't good enough to hold the quantity of shit the little one is able to squirt out in one go.

the range of available disposables is quite impressive too. and when i say "range" i'm mostly referring to price (and by impressive i mean shocking). until recently we've been using whatever was on 2-for-cheap special, but when the offers stopped we thought we'd see quite how bad the cheapest ones were, these are what we affectionately refer to as the "lower-class diapers", and so far there's only been one 'accident'. since we saved some money we thought it might also be fun to try the most expensive ones - the organic, fairtrade, CO2 neutral, chemical free, biodegradeable, super hip, upper-class diapers. they look nicer too.

to illustrate how ridiculous it is, the cheap pack contains 32 diapers for 20DKK (about 2.7EUR) and the overpriced pack contains 52 diapers for 129DKK (about 17.3EUR). that's either 0.6DKK or 2.5DKK per diaper change. it's four times the price to be branded 'ethical'.

we should just stick her in the garden and let her fertilize up the place.

12.10.2011: last night i went to my first football match. infact, it was probably the first game i've ever properly watched (all the way through at least, without deciding to read a book instead, or go to the toilet for an extended period of time, or both). it was denmark vs portugal, some kind of european cup qualifier, i don't know. and i suppose it was fun enough.

the big highlight was walking out into the stands, the stadium full of all that roaring noise. bright lights, super-green grass, ticker tape, a full moon. the scale of it all is impressive, for sure. i remember thinking, "it's just like in harry potter". because really, that's my nearest cultural reference point - a scene in a film about wizards.

ultimately, i still don't get it. and i don't think i ever will. i suppose you need to be invested in the sport or team to care much about it all. there's a lot of energy and atmosphere and all that, but nothing incomparable to what you'd get at a good concert (for me anyway).

the volume was impressive, but what struck me the most was the quiet inbetween. i completely missed the kick off, and various other events that i'd have thought were important, just because it was so quiet i didn't realise anything was going on. who knew football could be so quiet? like a silent film in the din.

which reminds me, maybe now i can finally get around to watching that zidane movie.

also the mexican wave was fun.

10.10.2011: it's kind of weird, last week i suddenly had the strongest urge to listen to weezer. and now i find out their bassist just died in vaguely prophetic circumstances. i felt kind of sad about it, but then i realised he wasn't actually in weezer until after pinkerton, so really he was never in an incarnation of weezer that meant anything to me. but still, i really liked his paintings (in a radiohead kind of way).

i want to write about the fantagraphics comic anthology mome, which i started reading with the first issue way back in 2005 and was recently cancelled at issue 22. obviously it couldn't keep going on forever, and there is only so much space on one's bookshelf, and i shouldn't complain at all, it's just that the ending was all a bit shit.

a couple of things, starting with the most pedantic - the style of the book's spine was significantly changed at issue 20. what this means is i have a beautiful looking bookshelf right up to the last three books, which now look odd and out of place (especially since the last one is double the width). if you were going to cancel the series you could've at least kept the design consistent. comic geeks are picky and obsessive about stuff like this. fantagraphics should know that. actually i've heard this is more of a problem with manga, where the whole book format can change halfway through an epic 50 book series, that must really suck. afterall, that many book is an expensive investment.

secondly, couldn't you have let the ongoing stories finish first? several of the long running contributers have had to finish up with either "to be continued" or an ending which feels tacked on and just a bit trite (i'm looking at you kurt, but of course you're forgiven). that is just bullshit - i'm left with half stories.

apparently sales were flat and the project was breaking even (a nice interview with the editor, if you need a citation), which i actually find surprising. kind of. people will always give up on your publication and stop reading, but who would start reading something when it's already so many issues gone? where would you start with something like that? perhaps a restart would have been good, one issue tying up all the old contributers work and the next starting fresh - join the fun whilst it's accessible. but nevermind, because this obvously wasn't the problem.

anyway, i'm sure mome will also be missed.

04.10.2011: it's not every day that you find a burning car right outside your apartment (not if you live outside of christianshavn, at least). we'd gone into the bedroom to get better light for a photograph of marika. and the whole thing was just a bit surreal. "oh, there's a car on fire. i better take a photograph":

a strange thing to see on a quiet and calm afternoon. these things are normally accompanied by booms and wails and sirens, not bird song.

but speaking of which, i need some good (or bad) siren samples. anyone?

anyway. it's probably nothing to do with pyromania, but i've felt a sense of deep contentment the last couple of days. i'm just very happy, in a non-manic kind of way. call it sleeploss, or sleep reclamation, or whatever, but it's nice. everything is very good.

i should mention the wire as well, because i just watched the penultimate episode of season 3 and it was fucking brilliant, in ways that i can't explain without doing any spoilers. the whole series has been incredible, in this big impossibly shakespearean way (don't let a stupid comment put you off), and i need to tell you again that you have to watch it. because it took grilly telling me several times for me start watching it. so just go and do it.

"Weezer had their first practice on February 14, 1992, and their first gig was opening for Keanu Reeves' band Dogstar shortly thereafter." who knew?

04.10.2011: there's a debate in the media at the moment about breastfeeding in public, which was triggered by one of copenhagen's large department stores announcing it will be opening a breastfeeding bar. that sounds great, i thought, until i realised it was only due to them receiving too many complaints about breastfeeding in their 'normal' cafe, and not to help new mothers feel comfortable dealing with their babies.

oh, the horror - a breast sucking baby. boobies. milk leakage. posseting.

basically, and to skip to the crucial point, what the fuck are you so bothered about? what is it about a breastfeeding mother that offends you so fucking much that you feel the need to complain to a cafe manager or write into a newspaper about it? what is wrong with you?

you make me want to take a shit in your hot chocolate. a really nasty loose one.

the medical milieu can't recommend breastfeeding enough, and for mothers to breastfeed for as long as possible. in our meetings with the various midwives and specialists breastfeeding was recommended and stressed many times, and it was given a high importance in the hours and days straight after the birth by the hospital staff. except, apparently there's a certain amount of social unacceptance about it. at least enough for illum to create a whole new cafe to make their childless customers feel more at ease.

relax, your nippples are safe now..

but what are these women to do? obviously i'm very angry about it because it's something i'm (we're) dealing with at the moment. it's difficult getting out and having a normal life at the best of times, and now some stuck-up ass-for-a-fuckface wants to complain that our presence ruins the flavour of their beverage.

trust me, the alternative wouldn't please you. one person suggested that it wouldn't harm the baby to wait an hour before being fed, something about letting it cry, etc. this person obviously has no idea of the stress that parents go through when trying to comfort their child, but putting that aside, a hungry baby does not cry - it screams. what you're asking is for your cafes to fill with murderous tortured screaching wails. you'd be more comfortable sipping your expensive latte in an abattoir. close your eyes - it's the sound of cats being skinned alive and set on fire.

or maybe you expect mothers to stay at home and never leave the house? what kind of an asshole are you exactly?

also btw, comparing breastfeeding to smoking is so far into the realms of the unreasonable i'm not even going to justify your comments with counter-arguments.


01.10.2011: almost into october and along comes a week of the finest summer the year has seen (or the perfect autumn we couldn't have hoped for). it peaked on friday, at precisely 2pm in vestrbro torv when shuffler played.

that'd be my fourth open air gig (as far as i can remember), as DIY as you like. in the half-shade of a tree. cobblestones and cafes. small children gathering infront of us and dancing, the bums gathering behind us and drinking. apparently always the smell of weed when we play. thumbs up from a large group of passing school children. also my first proper beer in over three weeks.

it was a sloppy gig but it was happy. and we were appreciated.

marika was also there enjoying the vibes and behaving herself. so of course i was running around showing off the soon-to-be child prodigy (triggering the noosphere at 15 months, solving rubik's cubes at two, proving the smooth poincare conjecture in four dimensions by four, discovering the hyper-squids at twelve, and then destroying the universe sometime shortly after that - it's true, i dreamt it).

which is of course a lie, since none of us has been asleep long enough to actually dream. but nevermind.

and anyway, caramel butter tea is so much better than you could possibly imagine.

22.09.2011: probably more out of necessity than anything else, i've found myself getting interested in sleep cycles again, and i'd forgotten how fascinating sleep is.

well, i guess there's a lot i've forgotten about sleep.

i could spend all day staring at circadian graphs and hypnograms. sleep spindles, k-complexes, onset parasomnia (included my own personal favourite - confusional arousal). this stuff is great, but i'm left wondering if there's a plausible reason why infant sleep cycles have to be significantly shorter than adults. there should be some kind of meaningful overlap or synchronisation between them. if it could tie in with feeding requirements or something i'd be happy, but it seems to be more due to mental development, which is of course just annoying.

so babies need all this REM sleep (that'll be why they wake up all the time) for their brain/mental development, but do they get easily over-stimulated so that their REM sleep is upset, or do they need encouraging to get more meaningful experience for effective REM sleep? i'm beginning to wonder if these kind of thoughts are even making sense. no worries, i have my excuses.

i've also been discovering and detailing new infant sleep phases. these include "approaching drowsy", "might fall asleep", "neglecting sleep", and my new favourite "catatonic".

anyway, i'm listening to emo today (um, 2nd wave?). because you're so last summer, etc.

19.09.2011: monday morning and everyone is asking me if it's going well with the baby, if we're getting settled in, getting enough sleep, if we've gotten into a routine yet, etc. with blank and blurry eyes, how can i respond to such a question on my first day back to work? how can i possibly know? yes, it was going well when i was going to bed at 9pm every night and getting up at 10am, then spending all day looking after my girls, but now you've changed the game. and you can't ask me how i'm dealing with it at 9am.

ask me at the end of two weeks, see if i can pick my jaw off the ground long enough to form a reply.

actually it's not so bad. not right now. and i feel terrible complaining even slightly. it's not me that has the hard job right now. men have the whole child birth thing easy. the least i could do is double my coffee intake and suck it up.

you know who are amazing though? single mums..

one more thing. i suddenly have a strong urge to try and convince all my friends that they also want to have babies. i've noticed this before in other new parents, and it's definately something you can file under things i never thought would happen to me (and things i'm fighting, so don't worry about talking to me, i've not gone completely baby crazy). maybe it's another hormonal response, like banana ethylene production triggering other fruits to rippen faster. it's a fun thought, to me at least.

17.09.2011: i know i'm getting a bit ahead of the curve here, but i started thinking about the best ways to teach children to count, and wouldn't it kind of make sense to start a child with binary instead of decimal? kind of? just a little bit?

decimal is hard because you have to learn ten arbitrary numerals, whereas in binary you only need 0 and 1, it exists or it doesn't - it's much easier! also once you understand binary, the fundamental base, it's easy to scale it up to other bases, whereas once you're stuck in the decimal mentality it's much harder to shift.

the big problem is learning powers, which is understandly quite a large step, and one that's immediately necessary with binary (if you want to count to two at least). also, perhaps binary isn't at all useful without a conscious model of decimal. i don't about you, but i always mentally convert binary into decimal, but is this because we're 'programmed' in decimal or because binary digits are useless for practical purposes (being so symbolically light)? or both?

btw, as for the biological argument for using base10, our fingers are just as competent at dealing with 10 bit binary as they are with decimal. plus you can count up to 1024, which is a bit better than 10. i wonder if there's also a cerebral reason for using decimal? such that there's an optimal ratio between the number of numerals used and the number of powers required. anyone want to donate another 15 babies for my experiment?

15.09.2011: random paragraphs from random times stiched together in an order leaning towards apparent cohesion:

we had a midwife visit (actually she wasn't technically a midwife, but nevermind) and all was well, of course. except the woman was a bit confused and had to chek the baby's gender on the sheet, because apparently marika was wearing "boys' clothes". seriously? and here's me thinking the stripey blue tshirt and stripey brown trousers were reasonabley gender neutral.

i'm also getting tired of changing all the gender specific pronouns into the feminine form when reading baby information out loud. unsurprisingly enough, this seems to be less of a problem (i.e. they're already in the 'correct' form) when reading about passive activities such as sleeping (although, right now you'd have a hard time convincing me even sleeping was passive).

marika gets extra frustrated when i tell her about all the clever parenting tricks we'll use on her when she's older. she's annoyed mostly because i've already explained to her how she'll have forget them all by the time we trick her with them.

i guess i find it hard to come to terms with the fact that she doesn't know anything. she has no concept of zero or one, up or down. she doesn't know what rain is. grass and trees are nothing. not even hot or cold have names, they're just unexplained, maybe even unrelated, feelings of discomfort. she doesn't even have a self. she's living in an almost absolute void. maybe it's the power of projection that makes it seem so weird, in the same way we project onto animals, etc. or maybe it is just so weird. learning, and all that.

is there a reason why our baby's breath smells like butter?

12.09.2011: as a fresh witness to the creation of life (being a genetically active participant, as it were), i feel in a much better position to make judgements on such things as god - the almighty creator. because when you look at the living, breathing, growing, learning thing that your DNA has designed and your body has built, you can't help but entertain words like 'miracle'.

i hate that word, of course.

we're programmed to reproduce ourselves from the smallest of raw materials, combining them together from trivial nothings to create something truely astounding - body and mind. our one purpose is the propagation of our genes and memes. the path that leads to the existence of a new life can be traced back through countless generations, binary exchanges diverging and converging all the way back to the LUA. for all intents and purposes, the data points may as well be infinite.

there is no unity, no omnipotent supernatural force or deity that could possibly create the process and the individual quite so perfectly. this is my irrational mind talking, the part that religion usually preys on, and it's that side of me that looks at the baby in my arms and knows that only a simple yet massively emergent process such as evolution could achieve this level of complexity.

i'm turning Paley's watchmaker analogy on its head. as in, we've become so complex that a design is impossible.

order out of chaos, baby disproves god.

speaking of the baby, she now has a name, behold:

Marika Autumn (R I) Keller Ashmore

she's doing us proud. currently wide awake and staring around the room intently. looking so damn hip in her funky mix of clothes, some of which we're mine when i was baby (she sometimes sleeps in julie's original moses basket and uses the blanket my grandma wrapped around my dad, we pass on our armour as we pass on our genes). she's so retro (insert utero joke here). um, photos still always available on request.

maybe i'll explain about that ridiculous name another time. or maybe not.

ooooh, she's peed all over my leg. awesome.

10.09.2011: and then the weirdest thing happened. after numberless days of not being able to even blink without passing out, i'm lying in bed and i can't sleep. i have this girl, my girl, lying on my chest and i can't stop staring at her. she shares the same contented sleeping face as her mamma. and i promised myself i wouldn't get overly mushy, i wouldn't gush and all that disgusting new parent stuff, but it's also allowed a little bit. the moments are just too gooey.

we'd had something of a breakthrough, involving keeping her food in and getting her wind out. so i was lying there listening to her digestive system work, the exact same noises coming from her as were coming from my own belly at the same time. i couldn't help but giggle a little.

when the poo came it came thick and fast. we had a little celebration - she hadn't passed anything all day. it's times like these that you're allowed to eat chocolate in bed. then we slept. and for a good number of hours too. the nights are a strange time, passing in bursts of semi-concious baby interaction. but having said that, i've always found sleepless nights to be a bit weird. only now the faint glow of morning doesn't bring a fresh new day - the baby acts the same no matter the time.

anyway, we're feeling good and optimistic today. it's going well and we've learnt some good lessons. we even took her out in the pram (from here on reffered to as the barnevogn or the emmaljunga). of course she cried halfway around the lake, but then promptly fell asleep. it was so refreshing being out we just kept walking. as easy as that. another little victory, although it felt huge at the time. it's all very reassuring.

also i'm getting very good at doing four things are once, but not actually finishing any of them.

suddenly i'm getting slightly paranoid, she might actually read this one day. strange thoughts. like how she'll learn to talk and read and communicate. but anyway, nevermind, these are discussions for another time, so maybe i should just embarrass her by saying something like "hello little put!". (because talking about the colour and texture of her poop isn't enough.)

..stupid fathers

09.09.2011: so what can i say? typing with one hand and with a tiny baby girl in my lap. for now all cute and docile, making little sighing noises and letting mamma sleep. she look so beautiful i could just cry, but she's on the verge of existential terror and any second now she's going to remember she's alive. she's going to want to tell us exactly how confusing and frustrating that is. shock and awe.

everything kicked off on monday night. i think i noticed the waters go before julie had, but i just thought it was a little pee (my own, maybe). thinking about it now, that was a whole lifetime ago now, kind of literally. and these thoughts blow my mind. but not as much as those moments when i realise exactly what it is we've done. julie has built us a whole new person. and she's amazing. and she smells like the peanut and chestnut honey cookies i'd made just before she decided it was time to announce her big entrance (or maybe 'exit' is more appropriate).

a complete lack of sleep has destroyed my ability to form coherent sentences. but i've never felt so good whilst feeling so physically devastated and mentally abused. on our way home, after staying at the hospital for two nights, i had to ask the taxi driver what day it was. time has become like treacle, which i'm thinking about because that's what her first poop looked like. masses of thick tar. amniotic fluid is a real rush, i hear.

but i think we've agreed that this whole process has been somewhat of an ordeal. people must either forget, due to the emotional wreckage that follows, the ecstatic deliruim and masses of new information flying at you when you're least capable of dealing with it, or they simply choose to not tell you. i suppose it wouldn't be fair to tell someone "so you know, most probably this is more fucked up than anything you've ever experienced", just before the shit starts getting serious. most likely you just can't put it into words to even begin to adequately explain it.

but still, there's nothing wrong with a bit of warning. (yeah, i know you tried.)

so i got to watch everything, in full gruesome technicolour. primaries. blood squirting up on my shirt and all. they let me cut the umbilical cord. and when the little one stopped screaming, fuck me reality is huge, she lay quiet and just stared up into the new world. quiet for a little while.

we've barely slept for days. of course. completely removed from the rest of the world. like being caught and taken off in a seperate little surreal bubble. wandering down random hospital corridors, lost in the labyrinthine architecture, so confusing at the moment you need to remember exactly where you just came from. wondering why other couples seem to have everything under control (clue: they don't). eating hospital food at random times of the day, so slowly. trying not to judge the woman with a pack of cigarettes squashed into her baby's cot, pressed against the plastic wall by the duvet.

also the beard has to go.

but the little girl! who doesn't quite have a name yet, she was born at 11:13am on the 6th sepember, weighing a precise 3.02kg (i'm not sure if that was taken before, after, or during when she peed everywhere).

and now i'm wondering why i'm even trying to write about this, when i'm so incapable and the whole thing is so ridiculous, indescribable, and still happening just on the other side of the room.

goodnight, and all that.

(btw, photos are available on request - just let me know if you want cute or gorey ones)

29.08.2011: in the place of any important news, here's what we're wasting our time doing..

so we figured we deserved a bit of a treat, and shouldn't every saturday morning start with a trip into the city for breakfast? for example, an authentic american brunch, with pancakes and omelettes and hashbrowns. the baked beans were actually excellent. bottomless coffee. and i'm reminded of how much i miss hp sauce.

then we walked over to blueberry square library to borrow as many comics as i could carry (did you know i'd not read any hellboy up until now?). that was my second choice, since for some reason they don't have grant morrison's run of justive league. nevermind, i'm sure.

from there we caught the bus down amager to the fish shop where we bought four eels, three moss balls, a new plant, and four eyeless fish, which are my new favourite aquatic thing:

because they don't sell squids.

for dinner i homemade gnocchi from scratch, which was very satisfying despite being surprisingly too easy. who knew? (and why didn't they tell me before?) evil tomato sauce for the wins, etc.

then there was watching of the wire, and later the eating of icecream out by the lake. possibly the last evening of the year that could at all feel like summer. apparently there are six cities in denmark that haven't had a single summer's day this year.

before bed we watched hard candy, which was as interesting as i can imagine torture porn getting, and was at least interesting for the right reasons. if you're into that kind of thing.

29.08.2011: two things..

it's election season again in denmark, which means every signpost, lamppost, fence or rail is now covered in big ugly election posters. and they're useless. never a slogan or a mention of policies, nothing exciting, just a face and the name of the party.

what annoys me is the complete futility of it all - as if a photo of the candidate's smiling punchable face is going to convince anyone to change their mind about who they'll vote for. how often do people actually change their political affiliations anyway? and if they do it'll be based on a much larger movement or change than pia kjaersgaard's new haircut (or lack thereof, perhaps).

it's like them being on the street meeting people by proxy. it's bullshit.

and then also..

someone was stupid/brave enough to suggest asking this years miss USA contestants should evolution be taught in schools? of course it's easy to laugh at miss USAs, but this is actually very scary. i'm still waiting for the "should religion be taught in schools?" follow-up question, since you're so obsessed with both sides of the, er, 'story'. because no one would say "yes, but only alongside science", that would be stupid. if you watch far enough into the video there are some almost good enough answers, honest, but what there isn't is any mention of what 'science' is. "facts not theories should be taught" she says, which sounds sensible but is the worst answer of them all. maybe schools should start teaching children what the word "theory" scientifically means, as opposed to what it means mathematically. but this is what happens when facts disprove non-facts and it all goes to shit. faith is of course stronger than science, because it has to be.

to tie it all together and explain why the miss USAs scare me, they base their answers primarily on appeasing potential voters. the smarter ones know that they can't say "yes, because evolution is a fact, and creationism is a fiction invented to sell books", because they will lose. this is fine, but you see exactly the same behaviour exhibited by presidential candidates. be afraid.

"NewEnglishWord: Homeopathetic - Arousing pity, esp. through vulnerability or sadness due to a lack of understanding of the scientific method"

27.08.2011: at 6am the sky has turned a sick shade of urine stained yellow, much too vibrant for so early in the morning. like the pink of the sunset inverted. i'd feel ill if it wasn't so beautiful. all that chaos of thunder and lightning tearing itself apart, ripping out the blue. i swear i've never seen the sky a colour like that before.

i remember a glastonbury morning once that was all sepia tones, the sky crowned by an almost complete circular rainbow. that must have also been at about 6am. i was sobering up from a night of cheap bourbon, walking back to my tent, it had been my favourite festival nights of all time. that was back in the day when we knew how to do it properly.

these days were still doing it pretty good, drunken butterfly running the shows with grizzly panache of some kind of the other. the boys make this shit look easy (when you don't have to turn a profit). so many happy faces, great music.

although, there was a moment last night when i thought, oh shit, this is it. i've had three beers and, wait, do we know what we're doing? but it was like a sudden calm descending. i hope when it really comes my body will react in the same way. rationally. and why not?

HA. anyway. i have a gig in two hours. i hope that doesn't sound irresponsible. i'm hoping the dreadful sounds of drunken butterfly might induce the baby. either that or unfortunately the baby will refuse to come out for another week after hearing the sounds its father makes in his spare time.

either way, it's still raining. again. the sky is one big eternal interference pattern.

22.08.2011: please don't mistake my silence to mean that anything significant has happpened in the last few days (presuming i'd be too busy to tell you about it). i'm just practicing.

or something. fuck, i don't even know what that means.

and my brain just told my fingers to type "dip" but instead they typed "drop". fine, whatever.

damn it, kids have it way too easy these days. with their dubstep and their katy perry.

i'm really missing playing music with old friends today. recently i've been listening to a lot of their new material and it's all very good. new albums, random songs, works in progress, etc. i could go somewhere with this and maybe write something interesting about it, but it's not going to happen. never mind.

right, now i remember what i was going to post. this one of the most disgustingly fascinating things i've found in a long time, a fungus that infects ants and alters their behaviour. the photo is particularly grim/great.

22.08.2011: slept in a different bed last night, one that's slightly higher than the usual bed. with curtains slightly thinner, letting in a little more light than usual. the room is unsubtly smaller. i feel suitably stranger this morning.

drunken butterfly performed a rocking show last night, despite the lack of anything you could call an audience. the hall had been reasonably full at the start of the evening, but as the improvised whatever-that-was and weird ambient techno went on, both for way longer than they should have done (sorry, but that kind of reptition just isn't interesting), it became emptier and empty. in the end we played to a crowd of about nine, which included our three girlfriends, the organiser, the soundman, and the bartender.

ten minutes before we went on i just couldn't be bothered, the audience had been punished enough. and it was late, passed my bedtime. i couldn't quite see the point. but then i remembered how much i love playing, and i couldn't think of any good reason to not put as much energy into this performance as i would any other. so yes, we fucking rocked it. for those reasons, and also because i have to justify using two pedalboards somehow.

18.08.2011: i felt a bit weird after finishing grant morrison's new book 'supergods'. it's as if he intended to write a book about the history of superheroes but changed his mind halfway through and decided to write a biography instead. this is almost fair, since our grant has been significantly involved in the development of the superhero in most recent decades, and it's not like i don't want to read about his cats and drug habits, i'd just rather read his take on his own career in a seperate book which doesn't mix it all up with everything else. or maybe that's just not possible, maybe that's the point.

either way, the last quarter of the book is quite the mess. i've read a lot of reviews of the book and none of them will tell you how badly edited the last few chapters are. the ordering makes no sense, whole sections have been moved around with little consideration for flow, things are incorrectly referenced forwards and backwards, and in one case a sentence is directly repeated after itself. it's a shame quite how much it loses its way.

this is ok in the aforementioned final crisis, but not in non-fiction (see what i did there?)

anyway, it was still a great read and of course i've been inspired to go back to the library and read a whole stack more of comics. these are comics that i'd never have bothered with otherwise, including mark millar's civil war and warren ellis's the authority (which is brilliant, btw). i also read infinite crisis, which was rubbish. you people thought final crisis was hard to understand, badly threaded, over complicated? at least it had a heart. infinite crisis was just boring and badly written - sorry. it was fanboy fap fest, nothing more.

also, btw, having a hot pasty delivered to you at work is probably the best possible thing that could happen.

15.08.2011: saturday. rain and mud. irish coffee at the fair trade festival in faelledparken. i like these little festivals but there's never much for me amongst the brightly coloured women's clothes from south america and the dull 'eco-hippy' women's clothes. ugly jewellery and what-not, but at least there's less cars made of aluminium cans. perhaps we're reaching the end of coffee, chocolate and useless crap noone wants or needs being the only things that can be 'successfully' fairly traded. maybe. and the meat - i'm not sure what makes the organisers think they can sell meat at a fair trade festival (hint: animals are just another commodity and can thus be traded fairly without their consent or well-being entering into the equation). for all my complaining it was quite nice anyway.

oh, and the reggae band was terrible.

sunday. first gig with the new band, much like the old band. it went well considering we'd only had two band practices (last minute organising, everything coming together out of nowhere, etc). if we'd played any better it would have been a waste anyway - being the last band on at a three day festival that ran out of beer the previous day aren't ideal conditions for rousing a good crowd. all we need now is material, playing a set of 'covers' isn't the way forward, but we needed to start somewhere, and it was a good enough start.

and then what else? some kind of imminent population++ event.. argh

i don't know, can anyone recommend any good diapers? what a bizarre question.

11.08.2011: to avoid the paranoid ramblings of someone who has no idea what is going on, let me just take a minute to get this straight. the summary execution by cop of an innocent man (unless "innocent until proven guilty" flew out of the window whilst i was staring all gooey-eyed at sweden) causes a protest, which in turn triggers a riot. this then ignites something you knew was coming. then the unfortunately inevitable looting follows - and it always will when your system is built around consumption and competition. and now the public is demanding the police be given more powers?

remember Andreas Grigoropoulos? oh nevermind..

and on it goes. "did social media and mobile telecommunications fuel this weekend's violence in london?" is not a question that anyone should be dignifying with an answer. to be fair, the BBC article did a reasonable job of discussing the question, but it terrifys me that our communication methods are coming under attack. weren't we just praising twitter and facebook when they provided a positive force in libya?

and i've still not seen an article on the BBC that honestly asks what did fuel the riots.

no, it's just cowardice. nevermind.

maybe the kids were feeling left out and couldn't wait until they got into university so they could protest along with all the students.

"when you cut the welfare a person gonna do crime."

oh fuck this. i don't even live in your stupid country anymore. bollocks to the BBC. keep all your police. give them more powers. increase your surveillance. have your water cannons and your stunguns and your bean bag rounds, your very-much-lethal non-lethal methods, and your spectors cheering as riot police kick this shit out of your children. see if i give a fuck anymore..

10.08.2011: obviously i'm very disappointed with the media's take on the UK rioting, most of which has been tightly focused on the looting. because looters and rioters are the same thing, no? because people risk fighting the police so they can steal a TV, isn't it? the main BBC article on monday began reasonably enough, but not even halfway down it became nothing but a detailed account of the looting. if you were ever unsure about the concerns of big media..

but what do i know? i'm not even there. people only smash windows so they can steal the contents within. people only steal because they're too lazy to work for their money. etc etc etc.

when the BBC asks the question "what could the police do to stop the disorder?" the answer sounds like "whatever they like" ("Whatever tactics the police feel they need to employ they will have legal backing to do so. Every contingency is being looked at. Nothing is off the table." are chilling and terrifying words coming from David Cameron). when the BBC ask "what turns people into looters?" the answer is "psychopathic tendencies" and "thuggery". there is no talk of disillusionment or a lack of future. not a moments pause for any kind of empathy, Darcus Howe can't be talked over fast enough.

the word "disorder" is thrown around a lot with much disregard for what it actually means. here it is again, just for fun:

Disorder: A disruption of the anarchy that otherwise characterizes our world. Any organically ordered system - a rainforest, for example, or a circle of friends - is an anarchic harmony that tends to perpetuate itself; disorder, on the other hand, can only be maintained by ever-escalating exertions of force. The precarious discipline of a high school classroom, the factory farm in which sterile rows of genetically modified corn are defended against weeds and insect by a host of technological innovations, the fragile world-domination of a superpower - these are not examples of order, but of disorder imposed from above.

Some confuse disorder with anarchy, misunderstanding it as the absence of any system. But disorder is the opposite of anarchy: enforced over a long enough period of time, it systematizes itself, stacking up hierarchies according to its pitiless demands. one of the most developed forms of disorder is capitalism: the war of each against all, rule or be ruled, sell or be sold. One might call capitalism a social disorder in the say way that bulimia is an eating disorder and sickle cell anemia is a blood disorder.

just saying. and my new favourite phrase is "consumer society riots". because that's what it's all about, isn't it? when your new mobile phone just doesn't quite cut it, what else is there to do but start throwing bricks at the virgin mobile store?

wait, what were we rioting about again? and just to be a little provocative.

09.08.2011: straight from the overnight ferry and to the office. i like this feeling of comfortable transience. i was only just swimming in the mountains, drinking coffee in downtown oslo. i was only just watching sweden float by outside our port window, reflections of the sun across the fjord.

i was only just 29.

so i'm older. it's almost disappointing. "anti-climax" would be the word if only i'd been expecting something more, but it was many years ago i shrugged off the significance of birthdays. or any other kind of annual event. i don't disregard the fact we're defined by our planet's rotations, i just think that we should be thinking bigger.

maybe i should have some big resolutions or something. or revelations. but it all just seems a bit irrelevant really. meh, and all that.

so i took it easy. i had my birthday hat and pretty golden curls in my hair - all the makeup i felt necessary this year. poignantly wearing my daniel mcgowan tshirt (funnily enough if a tree falls is on DR2 tonight, please make an effort to see it). i had my swim, scared at my own reflection on the underside of the water's surface. the only genuinely scary thing around here is the man behind held in solitarity confinement not many kilometers away. so picking blueberries and no longer hearing the constant rifle shots. we had waffles and i raided the liquor cabinet. the sun had made it's rare summer appearance and so i was happy and content. accidentaly spilt half of my birthday beer over moss in the garden, whatever.

the rest of the time it rained very british rain, going straight into my boots because all i had was shorts. we'd been hacking up giant hogweed, mostly very tiny giant hogweeds. snack lefse and nettle stings. it felt good being part of what's otherwise something of a one woman crusade against the invasive species.

i almost solved this 'cube' (which is harder than it looks), but was defeated by a brutal parity error. then i fucked it all up in the final minutes of my first 30 years. i guess that's all you really need to know.

30.07.2011: one of my biggest problems with social networks is when it comes to trolling. all of the good life skills that youtube taught me, the ways of ignoring the idiots and the assholes and the faux savants, they are all completely invalidated by facebook and google+. there's something about your friend's friend's aggravating opinions that can't simply be ignored (grilly's rule applied). and worse, the speed at which we twitter leaves no time for research or the construction of sensible arguments. it all falls to shit. so here's my new approach. instead of diving in and trying to rationally explain my opinion to people who i know will never change theirs, people who will only retort with comments like "PETA are a bunch of wankers", i'm going to blog instead. remember, like we used to do in the old days.

time was, livejournal was the most annoying thing the internet had to offer.

i suppose it started with this PETA infographic, and you can forgive me for needing to get involved, because if there's one thing i hate it's lack of transparency. the first thing you need to know is that this infographic is almost certainly created by the Center for Consumer Freedom's 'PETA Kills Animals' project ("Another year, another horrendous PETA slaughter of homeless pets"). the CCF claim to be a non-profit group who are looking out for your rights (as a rich western consumer), they say shit like:

"The growing cabal of food cops, health care enforcers, militant activists, meddling bureaucrats, and violent radicals who think they know what's best for you are pushing against our basic freedoms. We're here to push back."

the CCF is an industry funded front group run by the very much not non-profit PR agency Berman & Co, which was originally set up with economic help from Philip Morris. these are the same people that have been campaigning on behalf of the tobacco and junk food industries since 1995. they run a series of websites explicitly designed to appear grassroots, but they have nothing but corporate interests at heart. they plant seeds of misdirection into the most dubious of cracks and from these grow great irrational forests of misunderstanding. and they're extremely effective, apparently.

when someone provides you with information, be it straight facts or blatant propaganda, before you base judgements on it you need to ask yourself what they are trying to achieve with this information.

so, back to the PETA infographic. the main point it has to make is that PETA has killed, on average, over 2000 animals a year over the last ten year period, killing in the region of 97% of the animals they have impounded. this is the main argument that is to solicit great disgust from us - five dead animals a day.

firstly, PETA is primarily a marketing agency. their goal is to change the relationship between humans and the rest of the animal kingdom. they want to end the systematic abuse and slaughter of animals (anywhere between 25 and 60 billion animals killed a year for food in the US alone, a figure that makes the 2301 PETA killed seem somewhat less signifcant, no?). PETA are not an animal shelter, they do not spend money on directly caring for animals, that is not their 'job'. they have bigger and more fundamental goals that can not be achieved by trying to save the lives of every animal their employees encounter.

one very important detail the infographic neglects to discuss is the condition of the animals that PETA takes in. from the wiki:

"The group takes in feral cat colonies with diseases such as feline AIDS and leukemia, stray dogs, litters of parvo-infected puppies, and backyard dogs, and says that it would be unrealistic to follow a no-kill policy in such instances. They offer free euthanasia services to counties that kill unwanted animals via gassing or shooting - they recommend the use of an intravenous injection of sodium pentobarbital if administered by a trained professional, and for severely ill or dying pets when euthanasia at a veterinarian is unaffordable. They recommend euthanasia for certain breeds, such as pit bull terriers, and in certain situations for animals in shelters: for example, for those living for long periods in cramped cages."

as an aside, apparently 17 million dogs and cats are euthanised a year in the US by actual animal shelters. this is a problem created by pet owners, and ironically about 40% of the animals sent to shelters are passed on to rendering factories to be made into petfood. this is the kind of cycle that PETA are trying to break.

the other thing you need to understand is PETA's philosophy on euthanasia. they would rather kill an animal than have it suffer. this is what some people would call humane treatment.

what confuses me most about people's reaction to these statistics is that they are all meat eaters. you hate PETA because they kill a couple of thousand pets, but you're directly responisble for so much more animal cruelty yourself. it's that hypocrisy that infuriates me so much. you fucking troll.

back to the infographic, we're next told that PETA spends less than 1% of their budget on "actually helping animals". this is based on the presumption that none of their campaigning benefits animals in any way, and suggests that the only way anyone could help animals is by directly caring for them. the sentence frames PETA as a useless and ineffective organisation, and it is presented as fact. i've already mentioned the state of animal shelters, a problem (the pet industry) which is caused by the exact mentalities that PETA are campaigning to change, so i will leave it at that.

the infographic's final big claim is that PETA support groups that the FBI classify as "SERIOUS DOMESTIC TERRORIST THREATS" (in capitals, of course). where to even begin with this? firstly, neither the ALF nor the ELF have ever commited a violent act against anyone, this is fundamentally against their principles - they are both explicitly non-violent groups (this is not the place to discuss the definition of 'violence'). if we can't agree that it is non-sensical to label a group as terrorists if they have never killed, and have no intention of ever killing or harming anyone, then we have little further to discuss. ultimately, would the FBI allow PETA to provide economic support to a genuine terrorist organisation? no, of course they wouldn't.

but now we're getting into territory where i don't expect us to agree. you would say that the ALF and ELF put animals and the environment before humans, and that you think that is unexceptable. none of your arguments could convince me. of course, i'd shoot a cow before i'd shoot you. but it's not a binary equation. you might say a human's life is worth more than a million pigs, but such comments miss the point entirely. i wouldn't kill someone to save the lives of an abstractly large number of animals, but neither would i kill that number of animals to save the life of a person. we can quibble about numbers and scenarios and spend a lot of time in agreement and disagreement, but i shouldn't even be entertaining this notion, as it suggests a grossly inaccurate picture of the situation we're in.

morrissey put this rather ineloquently, his timing being especially poor, but his sentiments are in the right place. it's not that he considers the deaths in norway as inconsequential, it's that you are indifferent about the millions of animal murdered every day and he wants you to think about it. it makes you angry because it belittles the value of human life, but you only think that because you have such a strong disregard for every other living species. you're still looking at the equation from the wrong angle.

i strongly believe that we can't reduce human suffering without reducing the suffering that we inflict on our surroundings. whilst we perpetuate values that allow systemic abuse of animals we will never succeed as race. and we need to change our value system quickly because we're rapidly running out of time. and now we're back to PETA again. this is their goal. and they have to use exactly the same kind of controversey and shock tactics as morrissy did to get themselves heard, because this is a dirty war they're fighting, as the existence of the CCF clearly demonstrates.

the infographic ends with a malicious and personal dig at PETA founder Ingrid Newkirk, which has about nothing to do with anything. it says more about the mindset of the person who created the infographic than anything else.

so, it is evident how manipulated and misrepresented the actual facts are, and it is obvious that there is no good will and no honesty behind the "PETA kills animals" project. it is not a campaign that, as it first appears, is interested in saving the lives of animals at all. it is cleverly designed to deceive you into doubting the practices and sincerity of PETA, the question of which is often enough for the collective consciousness to make up its mind (see OJ Simpson, Michael Jackson, Matthew Kelly, etc) and it works two-fold. because if you have any doubts about an organisation you wont support them, either economically or argumentatively. you'll hesitate before defending them, because it's easier to say you don't support or agree with PETA than to argue a case your not 100% sure about, especially when it's against a rabble of delusional hate. and here the vicious circle arises.

but yet there is good news. what all of the above means, the existence of "PETA kills animals" and the PETA infographic, is that the people behind them, those 'donating' money to the CCF, they're actually scared of PETA. the only conclusion that can be drawn is that these corporations rely on the continuing abuse of animals and that PETA is a direct threat to them. therefore, if you care about animal rights or animal welfare and recognise that changes must be made, PETA is probably the organisation with the best chance of making that difference. there's a reason the CCF aren't going after the ASPCA, it's because they're not effective. it's almost beautiful how the CCF proves its own antithesis.

that will do for now. we can talk more about animal testing and anti-feminist adverts another time. if you're in disagreement with most everything i've said and still managed to read this far then i'd like to recommend you read eating animals by Jonathan Safran Foer, it's a good read and unlike other books on this topic (for example the no-nonsense guide to animal rights, which is excellent btw) it's written for you. it empathises with the dedicated meat eater and it doesn't patronise you. and if you can't be bothered with that then you can fuck off and watch earthlings instead, which you'll probably just thing is full of shit anyway. because for some people i suppose there is no hope.

and i almost got all the way to the end without comparing Penn & Teller to Martin Durkin again, whoops.

29.07.2011: what we have here is the shittest summer ever. it's a true fact. i'm wearing a scarf inside the office today. it's like the groke came and sat her ass down on scandinavia.

i wouldn't mind, if not for the vague traces of summer floating around. subtle coincidences that remind you of what summer used to feel like. half a minute of warm grass between your toes whilst reading an old book, the setting sun reflecting through glass buildings combined with a very distinctive smell of something, a fleeting something else, tourists everywhere, etc. i can't explain it and this makes no sense, because it doesn't really, either way.

canada has stolen our warmth.

gigged again last night, lucratively speaking. it was surprisingly good considering our lack of a practice space and lack of practice. i think we've rehearsed maybe once since germany, and that was using a cardboard box as a drum kit. last night was also the second time in a row we've been asked to play an extra song after ten minutes of noise. i mean, i love masochists as much as the next sadist, but you people are crazy.

must remember to not call our polite audience for idiots.

i convinced kenneth to dedicate our first song to amy winehouse, but i don't think anyone got the joke. nevermind.

um, video coming soon?

24.07.2011: on saturday morning we were discussing the cover of ekstra bladet, how unnecessary it was to use a photograph showing people lying dead on the beach. another danish newspaper had used exactly the same photograph, even the exact same layout, but heavily censored the bodies. it was somewhat more appropriate, but i still thought it was a bit much.

and then grilly showed me the cover of the sun. my first thought was that it wasn't real, someone had created it as a sick joke at the sun's expense. unfortunately not the case. my second thought was that it must have gone to print before the norwegian authorities had announced who was behind the attacks, that the sun in all their fuckery had gone ahead and presumed it was those pesky muslims again. then i looked at it properly and noticed the quotes. not al-qaeda, but like al-qaeda? because it's only al-qaeda that make such attacks? or what is it you're trying to say exactly?

there aren't enough nasty words in the world to detail how manipulative and incorrect that headline is. comparing the attack to 9/11 is fundamentally wrong in so many ways. how the fuck do they get away with it?

as a secret bonus, be sure to check out the daily mail's cover, if you ever wondered why it's my most loathed paper. no further comment necessary.

20.07.2011: whatever happened to prussian blue anyway?

"we're healers. we just want to exert the most love and positivity we can."

wow. who'd have thought they'd have grown up into pro-marijuana 'liberals' and start talking crazy hippy shit like that?

this recent article about the (now post-nazi) twins is uncomfortable but essential reading. everyone knew it was always a case of innocent girls being pushed too hard by their (the word 'irresponsible' doesn't seem at all sufficient) parents, but now the twins have relented you can really see how badly it messed them up. i mean, we pitied them before, but now i feel terrible for them.

it's a great example of how that kind of thinking can only propagate itself through ignorance. it also highlights the media's role in their misrepresentation and sensationalization. the media never did anything constructive with those girls, it just mocked them (or worse).

but fuck it, it's a great piece of journalism, just go read the article. and don't forget to look at their hippy paintings too.

for a quick change of topic, you could also read this article. i don't agree with everything it has to say about social networking, but i do want to quote the shit out of it (i wont though). most everything people have to say negative about social networks are actually just problems inherent in our society. all that is wrong with our lifestyle is emphasised through facebooks and the like. y'know, i wouldn't be on facebook eight hours a day if you weren't forcing me to sit infront a computer for eight hours a day (this is neither true nor relevant but nevermind). blah blah blah.

14.07.2011: about a month or two ago i was introduced to the bechdel test (thanks to girl wonder).

if you can't be bothered to click the link (and you should, because it's a very good discussion and explanation of what the test actually means), the test can be basically summed up as "does this book/movie/whatever feature two women that at some point have a conversation with each other about something other than men?".

it throws you into a chasm of despair. for a quick example read down this list of movies and see how they scored. as a random example, the new transformers movie passed because "While Carly and Sam are in the NEST HQ, Carly, Mearing, and Sam have a brief exchange about Mearing's term of address." fucking wow.

anymore i can't watch a film without feeling like i'm waiting for some good and honest female dialogue. and it never comes. i've watched a lot of movies recently, and the only one that even came close to passing is "synecdoche new york", which shouldn't need to pass anyway because it's so ridiculously egocentric and meta. when you have to ask yourself questions like "does it count if there's a woman playing a man who's talking to a woman?" or "what if there's a man repeating what he's told to say by a woman to another woman?" it doesn't really matter anymore.

anyway, i just wanted to push it out there some more. we can argue forever about wage imbalances and kult shaker adverts, but once you've had the gender bias in media framed in such a painful way you can never unsee it. and there's no way to argue against it.

on a semi-related note, it's amazing how many funny looks i get when i wear my "this is what a feminist looks like" tshirt. it got so bad in oslo airports that i actually started feeling a bit self-concious, before i realised how ridiculous that was, of course.

13.07.2011: um, shit.. what?

that pretty much invalidates my entire time at university.

anyway. posting the video of steve coogan vs paul mccullen the other day was a bit flippant. i liked the video (no, not like on facebook you dolt), but it didn't really illustrate my actual opinions on the matter.

i think the most damning point was actually made my paul mccullen himself (who is at least being vaguely honest about their apparent misconduct, even if he's not being honest at all with himself) - "if this brings about a law that silences the press so we can no longer catch politicians lying and cheating.." unfortuntely he never gets to finish the sentence, but perhaps (if has any kind of heart, brain or soul) he was going to end with "then we've really fucked up, and for what?".

we know that governments don't need any encouragement when it comes to crippling journalists, and that they'll use any opportunity to do so. the news of the world's biggest failing is giving the public a reason to want more regulations - just look what happens when the press runs amok!

and i guess i'm starting to sound a bit machiavelliesque, but there's a difference between breaking the law and being morally wrong (whatever that means), and don't forget that wiretapping and hacking personal communication is business as usual for the police - there's nothing journalists can do that your government already hasn't.

um, but also "freedom of the press" does not mean "by any means necessary".

either way, the news of the world only did what they did because you wanted them to. if everyone berates their practices then why do they buy their shitty paper? none of this is news. yes, everyone is an asshole.

disclaimer: invading people's privacy is not ok, but at least let's be consistent.

and finally, a pro tip - don't insult your audience by

see, i knew i just needed to rant about it.

11.07.2011: apparently the mountains care little for the seasons. clouds will be clouds, i guess:

i love how lonely those photos are. it's a cosy isolation up there.

anyway, i was going to rant about the news of the world. but probably i shouldn't.

it's just that i wanted to know what everyone is so angry about, exactly. is it because they targetted crime victims? dead people? celebrities and politicians? is it that they did it for shitty tabloid journalism? that they seemingly have no moral boundaries? or is it because it's a newspaper and not your government?

i can't help thinking i prefer the idea of journalists hacking my phone than the police. but just saying.

i hope the filth cascades all the way up the murdoch empire. i hope it chokes them.

really you should all be thanking them for showing you how fucking easy it is.

but yeah, i wasn't going to talk about it. so nevermind. go steve!

06.07.2011: coming into land i saw the most incredible thing - the sunset visible only by its pink staccato reflection in the sea. it was awesome. the sky was an empty slab of white marble.

tired today. drank too many beers yesterday and suffered paranoid dreams all night. drank too much coffee now. i'm becoming paranoid. there's something dark hiding in the corner. i don't know. it's all the water that's pooling beneath us. shouldn't someone do something to remove all the water from the bicycle basement? i mean, other than just leave the door open. i worry about the damp in our apartment. and i worry what happened to the tube of toothpaste. i worry about why my computer is always hibernating when i come home. i worry if it's so bad if i buy a stack of frozen pizzas. or that we have completely run out of toilet paper. or whether we haven't, and there's a secret stash of that somewhere as well.

the drunken butterfly basement has been completely emptied out. all that's left are dirtied tiles and a bad smell. bad acoustics to match. it's a proper scene from a horror movie. and after the rain on saturday night you could have drowned a midget down there. the tide mark on the amps was at about 40cm. we lost a lot, but most of it should have been thrown out years ago anyway. the brown couch will not be missed. water damage is so rock and roll.

why do i have to go and write so much stupid shit when i don't get enough sleep and then get too much coffee?

30.06.2011: i've been aching for summer longer than i can remember, but now it's finally here proper i realise i've fallen into the work trap and i hadn't even noticed. it's a testament to my job that i hadn't worried about it sooner, but i still can't help getting edgey about losing my summer. especially since i have no holiday planned, nothing longer than a long weekend.

and i've a 30th birthday to plan. but no ideas.

but i'm ok. maybe it's because i have more important things to care about. or maybe deep down i believe summer will last forever. again. when i was younger i always hated autumn specifically for this reason, and it's taken me years to get over that. but now i'm just rambling.

this weekend i'm taking a (very) quick trip up to norway to go swimming in the lakes, which is pretty much all i need right now. that and brown cheese.

best machine ever made (i also like his useless boxes, just brilliant).

and the best music video not made by michel gondry. for today, at least.

24.06.2011: i'm in germany this weekend, playing at a festival i can't remember the name of. we're outdoors and we are rocking it, or something to that effect. set stun to phasers!

roadtrip to flensburg..

if you need to contact me i'm available on my international (UK) phone number. the phone is apparently very loud and i can't work out how to quieten it. probably for the best.

22.06.2011: what is going to be weird though, is when i suddenly shift from ranting on all the time about how much i hate everything and start talking exclusively about babies.

i guess until then i can still complain about the useless people who can't decide which bicycle lane they want to be in, despite it being rush hour and the person behind them getting ready to kill. or i could complain that no matter how many menus and settings i go through i can't get my google account in english, the primary problem being the instructions explaining how to do it begin with you clicking on a menu item that isn't there in the danish view.

my banana is shit too.

and i was a moron and left my bike under a sticky tree.

must remember not to do that with our nice new barnevogn. it's brown. with a matching lift (which i don't know the english word for either). fat tyres, we totally rock.

also i should be talking about homemade icelollies, strawberry and basil, rhubarb and white chocolate. and computer games. but nevermind

16.06.2011: as summer progresses, and becomes something vaguely summery (summeresque?) it becomes more and more stressful to cycle to work. apparently it's even a problem that denmark is proud about, which kind of makes sense (although denmark seem to be proud of some pretty strange things - let's not go down that route). christianshavn is the worst, it's the bottle neck that all cyclists meet when travelling into the centre from amager. and the the worst of the worst is the red light just before the bridge (knipplesbro). so when a woman stands with her bike in the fastlane chatting to some pedestrian, long after the light has turned green, people get really angry as it means they're not going to make it through the light, again.

the point of this story though (it is a story), is that one lady was so annoyed that she dung her bell so hard that she actually cycled into a lamppost. it was the funniest thing i've seen in ages and absolutely made my day. and it wasn't even 8am yet.

i was on my way to the dentist, which is about the only reason i'd be up so early. just to clarify that.

my dentist puts a paper towel over my face and she thinks she's funny. maybe it's because i can't help laughing when she sticks her fingers in my mouth. i don't know. she should enjoy my visits, the rest of her career will be dictated by bawling kids. and with sharper teeth than mine.

"opinion on the internal pig dog", thank you google translate for also making me smile nicely. although infernal or eternal pig dog somehow ring better.

kayaking around christianshavn was fun (much better by boat than by bike). there's something very calming about being low in the water. an early evening beer also helps, sloshing around in the sunshine. using a paddle whilst drinking is tricky.

grilly dropped a link to something on kottke the other day, but i'm just going to drop a link to the whole site because everything there is worth looking at. where do people find another amazing stuff to put on a blog like that? oh, the internet..

07.06.2011: i'm looking for a danish person who can tell me that's ok to have koldskal for breakfast. any takers?

and i have a yin-yang in my coffee cup. how did i even do that?

this guy, who got a ticket for not riding in the bike lane, is my new hero.

don't call alan moore a misogynist, that's just misinformed. he's done more than anyone for strong female characters in comics. or is he just non canon enough for you?

blah blah blah

it was a good weekend for barbecues. the weather was glorious. we all caught too much sun. sitting in the park with our amateur grilling, people taking pity on us and sharing their flammables. watching dogs eat meaty bones bigger than their own heads, a drug dealer who clearly hasn't seen the wire (even i know you don't complete the whole transaction whilst sitting on a park bench, i didn't tell him). vegan food and awesomeness. beans, seriously.

um, i could talk about minecraft all day.

i don't know what else. enjoying our courtyard. our renovated garden (we put some rough stone slabs down, roughly). the recycling centre, etc. some new cubes.

07.06.2011: rocking out to check your head this morning. my life has been missing this album so badly i can't believe i hadn't even noticed.

other shitty stories, i'm back on non-solid foods. my dentist decided she wasn't happy with the speed at which my teeth were moving, so she inserted what looks like an extra row of four teeth behind my top front teeth. this explanation goes none of the distance required to explain it, but all you need to know is it means i can't fully close my mouth, meaning i can't chew or grind or do any of the other cool stuff sheep can do. right now i can't remember if i could before either, but nevermind. sheeps?

i still managed to eat two whole homemade burgers last night though. it was epic on my own scale.

a fish died. maybe somewhere a fish is born. i don't know. maybe not, looking at this graph (it's not new news, but maybe it's pretty so you'll pay attention this time) on declining fish population.

we had a very nice extended weekend in fyn. good beer and crushable potatoes. falafels are also edible. i started reading kristin hersh's book and it makes me feel special. somehow. we played settlers and the little dictator inside of me became very excitable. my prettily coloured pieces will grow and crush your slightly less prettily coloured pieces in a very passive aggressive way. it's a great game (you were right grilly), and better for not having warfare. wouldn't risk be a great game if it took less than three hours to play?

dinner would be great too if it took me less than 45 minutes to eat.

other news, just lying around listening to the baby's heartbeat.

06.06.2011: our local bakery closed today. i've very sad about this, but mostly i'm just angry. they're the only bakery in walking distance that doesn't smell of snobbery. for example, and if you were so inclined, the bakery that's now nearest to us can sell you a loaf of bread for 10 euros. it's organic and it's gluten free and it's gorgeous bread, but what fucking planet are these people living on?

there's something of a bread and cake war going on in copenhagen at the moment, with a handful of the upmarket bakery chains rocking hard on the aggressive expansion tactics. they'll keep opening up new stores until one of them finally goes under and the other will take the whole market (of over- priced pastries).

two such bakeries opened near us in the last year. they both over-salt their bread and charge more three times that our local did. i'd like to blame them for what's happened, but i can't believe it's their fault. it's almost as if they're not even in the same sector, one of them sells bread whilst the other sells to people with too much money.

apparently our local was getting good business during the weekend but nothing during the week. this fits, as we'd only ever go there on a saturday or sunday monday to buy fresh rundstykker for breakfast. so perhaps more likely it was the supermarkets that put them out of business.

what makes it worse is that it was a french bakery (oh, that's why the danish people stopped going there, it wasn't danish enough for them), and i only just realised how good their apricot croissants were. they were the best. but nevermind. shit happens. our weekend breakfasts will be ruined for a bit, whatever. it's not like we wont have more important things to worry about soon anyway. or already, i don't know.

31.05.2011: i have to admit that's it been a long time since i've had a weekend devoured by computer games. this isn't a confession that it's been too long, but rather that it happened again.

my first experience of such a weekend is definitely not a fond memory. i'd only recently received my c64 for christmas, so i must have been nine (we'd spent that christmas in morocco and i remember imagining the whole trip as all of the computer games i'd be getting to play when i finally got home). this weekend i had two friends staying over, i can't even remember who, and all of our time was spent staring at that screen. button mashing. i couldn't tell you exactly what games we played, but it must have been some combination of dizzy, toobin and midnight resistance (i'm still convinced, quite without reason, that the c64 version is the best). it was fucking great. but when my friends went home just before sunday lunch i suddenly felt completely empty. it was my first real sense of throwing away precious time. my head swam. we'd had nothing but a long series of fake experiences. sure, it was exciting at the time, so compelling, but now i felt tricked. deeply stupid. i actually hated myself for it. i remember wishing i could go back and make better use of my friends and our time together. i probably cried for hours in frustration and regret. um, or something.

so we learn..

or rather, people make better games. for better or worse. exhibit A would be portal2 (don't worry, no spoilers here). i like shooting my friends in the face as much as the next person, but given the chance i'll choose co-operative play every time. the problem is that proper co-operative games don't exist. when i lived in brighton i sat down for a couple of nights and blasted through halo2 with a friend. it was great, but we weren't really co-operating, we were just on the same side. occasionally we'd cover each other or do some tactical something-or-other. maybe one person would drive the jeep and the other would shoot the gun, or whatever. but it was nothing we couldn't have done alone.

this is why portal2 co-operative is so brilliant, and beyond all of the other clever stuff that we already know about portal (most importantly btw, we need more games that make kids smarter). it teaches you how, and then and forces you to work together. thinking about the puzzles as a single player will get you nowhere, you have to constantly reinvent how you think about the game dynamics and being multiple players. to the point where, during one particularly shitty level (this is me being bitter), i was almost convinced we needed a third player. that would just be typical. but it's all about the social interaction.

back to my point, that was a lot of hours lost. but i still feel that they were well spent. like an evening spent playing chess with another person, rather than against them, if that makes any sense (images of dane and the blind chess player - we all win, if it's even about winning, which apparently it's not). sure i was completely drained and had horrific dreams about portals opening inside my head, but that's my fault for going to bed so late. also partly something to do with grant morisson, but fuck him anyway.

exhibit B is obviously minecraft. and what can be said about minecraft that hasn't already been said? to use a bad drug analogy (because all drug analogies are bad), if portal2 was cocaine then minecraft is surely heroine. there is nothing social about spending most of saturday and all of saturday night locked into a blocky bi-polar world of happy home-building and zombie attacks (stop trampling my crops you fuckers). i've learnt nothing useful and achieved nothing spectactular, infact i've achieved nothing at all. but it's such a beautiful and wonderous nothing, so strong in its fake feelings of progress. our new house is perfect in every way, it even has a waterfall in the living room so i can enter the house from under the sea if i accidentally fall out of my treehouse. i have a guard dog and a glass ceiling above my bed so i can stare at the stars.

meanwhile i'm completely neglecting the real house-cleaning that needs doing (i need a diamond vacuum cleaner).

it's just so good that i don't care.

and it's addictive in a very interesting way. i have no urge to start playing it, i don't have to rush home to finish my skyrail (i have to rush home for other reasons). but if i do start playing it i wont stop until an external force exerts some hefty pressure on me. there's always five other things that need doing. the day/night cycles force you to have several different projects on the go at once. i constantly get distracted by something else that needs fixing, or i'll discover a clever new way to implement something, or a new mineral.. and then three hours later, wait what time even is it?

parents beware. but at least it's not subscription based (that is the way of scum). and at least the world doesn't evolve on its own and go to ruin when you're not there (at least not in single player), forcing you to regularly check back on it. any incentive to keep you playing every day is evil. games that make you feel like you're missing things when you're not playing them should be banned. you wouldn't let your child smoke cigarettes, so don't let them play warcraft.

but now i'm just ranting.

did i tell you about my kimchi lasagne? was that a real lasagne or one you made in minecraft? can i even remember? i should stop this now.

26.05.2011: the title for this post should be "what the new EU directive on cookies means" (although you could always substitute "EU" for "danish" and "cookies" for "marmite", but i can rant about that another time).

1. it means, again, that the people who are passing laws concerning the internet (also see net neutrality and the endless and pointless copywrite debate) don't have a clue about how the internet works.

2. it means that the idiot journalist who wrote "thousands of websites are now illegal" is an idiot. where did he (and he was a he, i checked) make that number up from? "i regularly use about ten different websites, maybe i've seen a hundred in the last couple of weeks, i guess there can't be more than a couple of thousand in the EU. right?". yup, probably something like that.

3. it means that almost everyone who is running a vaguely important website, be it commercial or NGO or whatever, has to update their website with some means of explicitly asking for user consent to use cookies. not only is this ridiculous, it's also ridiculous.

4. that also means more bandwidth usage, btw.

5. it also means that every browser has to then be updated with some means of bypassing previously mentioned consent check, because no one actually wants to be asked about every single cookie. people don't care. if they did they'd already have enabled their browser to ask them about cookies, the functionalitiy for which is of course already built in. we can take care of our own cookies thanks.

6. does that then mean, if everyone is automatically saying they consent to cookies (like most of us already are, otherwise we'd have told our browser otherwise), that an explicit check for consent isn't explicit it all? making the whole thing completely redundant and pointless? probably.

david naylor said it best.

25.05.2011: i know you wont, but i'm going to ask you to watch this movie anyway. it's called END:CIV, and it'll take up less of your life than reading derrick jensen's books. you don't even have to watch it, you can just listen to it.

but anyway, nevermind.

20.05.2011: i've noticed that it's always around this time of year that i start having dreams about being back in school, educating part-time but forgetting to go to most of my courses/maths lessons, and then i suddenly realise that i've completely forgotten about my main project, thesis or dissertation or whatever, and there's absolutely no hope in me even finding a suitable topic, nevermind finishing it in time, that's just how little i've been paying attention to my classes. (run on sentence.)

at first i thought it was to do with my general lack of ongoing projects (this is somewhat easily remedied, and will be soon, in ways you maybe wont be expecting). or maybe it had something to do with my danish lessons - schooling but without direction or creating a body of work. but the timing of these dreams is too specific. so it's either one of two things - it's either that intense university work scarred me for life, or that all you whinging whiny students complaining all the time is really screwing up the noosphere. so can you please chill the fuck out? or at least keep your stress to yourself..

anyway, the boys are visiting this weekend (some of them at least). so, um, there. we'll see you in the streets.

hey beyonce, who runs your record label?

19.05.2011: there's a whole lot of bullshit over on the drunken butterfly website about our new CD (we had the fun album release party for you, now comes the hard sell). so i figure i can say it straight here, and this is it:

i only just got around to listening to it all the way through, finally mixed and mastered, and i can confidently say that it's by far our best efforts yet. and you can own one of these, you just have to let me know you want one.

sigh. i almost feel proud when i see the three drunken butterfly CDs lined up in a row. so shiny and pretty.

i guess that's all i have to say on this matter.

btw, quite a few people asked about my guitar at the party. and you're right, it is beautiful. "how do you get it sounding so heavy?" i could go on about the art of viking combat, wrought iron, and mammoth ivory, but really it's all in the wrist. also the bass distortion, mighty red distortion (in series), and bass amp vs guitar amp combination helps. open strings and a little blood. no only joking, it's straight from the heart.

well actually, what really pushed the sound over the edge was the date. it was the 74th anniversary of the hindenburg disaster, and as such the 'performance' was dedicated to herb morrison - for giving us the best audio recording of all time. um, maybe also dedicated to some rich people that died. or maybe it should have been dedicated to werner franz, who is at least still alive to appreciate the gesture. although he probably wouldn't care much for our glamourisation of the disaster spectacle. but whatever. that sound you could hear wasn't my guitar, it was the roar of two hundred thousand cubic meters of hydrogen igniting. fritz august breuhaus's tears hitting the pavement, amplified across 27028 days.

i'm watching the shuttle launch listening to drukqs (second cd). it's quite great. i love the birds flying around the rocket.

16.05.2011: some quick thoughts on eurovision. badly ordered.

firstly, moldova was of course my favourite. and it's also worth noting how brilliant and consistently crazy moldova has been over the last few years. they may actually have overtaken bosnia herzegovina as my ongoing favourite country. energetic baltic chaos is always good.

estonia should have won. even with a silly trick cane. i did like the backing singers on the azerbaijan song (but that was all - fucking vanilla). georgia's entry should have been nothing but the guitarist screaming for three minutes. lena ruined what she had by trying to be sexy, she was much better when she was a awkward and clumsy. i guess that's what the music industry does for you. it's a shame dana international didn't get through, it would have been great to see her and lena have a punch up on stage (um, y'know. both ex-winners defending their title, or something).

ireland was just bruce nauman's video piece 'double no' with a beat. although i actually like how bad those kids are. cocaine, right? unfortunately no country seems to have the guts to do rock/metal numbers two years in a row. was the switzerland guy trying to play reggae on a double bass? that heartbeat at the start of every song was very annoying. and i remember there being a lot of heels this year. also the screen was awesome.

my prediction for next year? blast beats.

we had a great party. well, we attended a great party. we combined at the last minute and it was the perfect size (although only because all the smokers had to keep leaving, maybe).

i can't believe we have to wait until decemeber for junior eurovision.

13.05.2011: and then you get punished by trying to get into work early, police lining up behind the wall to catch the environmentally concious cyclists that turn right on the red light at the junction that makes no fucking sense having a red light on. and i'm the asshole.

i don't mind. i'm not bitter. really. but as a community you should be asking yourself is this how you want the police to be spending their time?

sure there are some dangerous cyclists out there, i hate them as much as anyone. six out of seven accidents involving cyclists are caused by cyclists. but seriously, who gives a shit about someone turning on a red light? it's not what causes those accidents. and everyone does it. if we all agree it's ok, why is it against the law?

and really, by making everyone stop at a red light when there is no one around (and to be fair, we could just get off our bikes and walk around the corner anyway), all that's happening is the roads are getting busier. and that will cause accidents. just saying. is all.

copenhagen is one of the best cities for cyclists, so complaining is somewhat difficult, but there's still a lot of areas in the city that are bicycle unfriendly. maybe i should reword that as "bicycle annoying". there are too many places where it's significantly safer and/or quicker to not follow the law. it's that simple. and if the city wants to encourage more people cycling to work (it does), then it needs to not punish them at the same time. when getting from one place to another by bike becomes too much of a hassle (when it's raining and you're going to get a ticket for taking a 10m shortcut down the wrong side of the street) people will stop.

also, for the record, the only accidents i've ever caused on my bike have been when i've been drunk. you stupid cops should be chasing after the fucking drunk idiots instead. leave us commuters alone.

rant over now. going back to being sensible and shutting up.

11.05.2011: a wasp attack is a much more effective means of getting out of bed than an alarm clock. did you know i've never actually been stung? um, anyway.

so what we did was have an awesome lovely weekend. presumably - based on what we can remember of it. all that glorious sunshine. fucking rock and roll. we know how to show guests a good time. ask chris.

we had music at studenterhuset on thursday. and a big thank you to those of you who made it. you filled the void left by a cancelled support act and you made it worthwhile, i'm sure. and then to the moose, which never seems to be quite as bad as it used to be. talking to some guy who claimed to have been in so solid crew, or at least co-wrote their songs, whatever the difference is. please don't come with your drunk raps in my ear. please. and he totally missed the point when i said "oh, i know an interesting question", then turned to the much ignored lady he was with and asked her what her favourite bands where. "that's not an interesting question at all", he said. nevermind.

friday day was all about preparation. didn't you hear about our basement party? it was a great success. it is also better documented elsewhere, so i will not rave about it here like a sickened loonatic. but but but. there was crinkled crepe paper all over the lights. there was russian cocaine (the best kind). there were wigs. there was drunken butterfly, franzosisch ist sexy, project hindenburg, hjortene, chris tt, and mount rushmore safari. there was that moment when i realised i was on the edge and any moment i was going to..

but then it was ok. i was in bed and i'd survived the morning and i had to get up, and i'd never been that drunk at 12am. sitting in the shower, not really knowing what to do with myself. out in the sun. i can't remember eating breakfast, how i'd managed. but i was happy and the world was beautiful.

i could remember i'd made a mess of my gear when i'd hurriedly tried to put it away in a drunken exhausted trance immediately after playing, so one of the first things i did was unpack and check everything. for half a second i paniced, because it looks like i'd messed up my guitar, but then i realised i don't care. it has just been broken in. but anyway, turns out it's fine, it was just blood speckles. over the pick-ups, soaked into the strings, and even a little up the body. not a large amount, but enough for me to get all excited about how damn rock and roll i am, thus completely ruining any rock and rollness at all. photos:

and since they're admittedly a little gross, how about some nice sunshine smiling photos?

just stretching my camera lens.

and that was about that. we're all doing it right. highlight it confirmed. put your maybes in a sock.

28.04.2011: yeah, it's kinda of like a summer morning. bright and cold. but with a small amount of empty promise. the birds are excited too, making sounds like alarm clocks outside my window at 5am. i hate them more than is necessary. but no one likes drudgery on a such a morning.

i'd dreamt my teeth had began falling out, starting with a large gum section on the top front right. it's a weird thing holding three of your teeth still attached to a chunk of gum in the palm of your hand. the rest of them came loose soon after. i had to pick the pieces out one by one from the jumble of teeth and metal in my mouth. all small bones, metal shards and saliva. like carefully extracting a fishing line of razor blades all knotted up around your tongue. knuckles.

it's not such a bad feeling, the physicality of your modular construction. the taste of things falling apart. everything just large dust particles. cue crumbling dream sequences from akira. dali segments. a familiar feeling from somewhere. maybe i ate too many modulok pieces when i was younger. sucking on too many pieces of lego.

anyway, i'm back from france and trying to get things done. this much is at least true.

15.04.2011: it was only the other week that i realised i'd been working at my new job for over five months and not taken a proper holiday yet (it helps that in denmark that for your first year working you don't get paid holidays, perhaps). it's testament to my job that it had been so long before i felt the need for a holiday. i've been kept happy and distracted (it helps that in denmark that for half the year it's shitty weather, perhaps). so anyway, tomorrow we're off to france until the 26th or 27th or something like that. you know. now you know.

other things you should..

do i need to remind you about drunken butterfly's next party? 6th of may, remember that and act on it. we shall have fun.

do i also need to remind you about our eurovision party the following weekend? probably i haven't told you about it. i can't remember. but let's make it massive. please.

13.04.2011: since my girlfriend is away, a business trip to canada no less (and of course i'm very jealous, but not quite as much as i'm proud), there's nothing for it but a hardcore rock and roll weekend. because drinking 48 year old whiskey at mikeller bar, falling into that black hole, damn that is so punk rock. and i must take this opportunity to get thrown out of isola, not for the usual (bad behaviour), but because it's nearly morning and they need to close.

only when you're alone can you get away with eating supernoodles and baked beans mixed together in a bowl with peas and sweetcorn.

we had the first day of summer in our courtyard. i dragged a comfy chair out and read comics whilst it lasted. half asleep in the sun, it was all i was good for, but it was brilliant.

and only on my last night alone do i start to consider purchasing minecraft as a possibility. why didn't i think of that on thursday? instead i waste over two hours watching videos of other people playing it.

this website, illustrating the data that the a mobile phone keeps, is quite amazing. and all those new laws that force companies to retain data, the laws that bury data protection in a pile of shit, as if it was as worthless as everything else from the 80s and 90s (depending on which data protection act you're refering to), why aren't you people fighting them? data protection was supposed to protect you, not the data.

a good whiskey is once you can still taste in the morning. and never trust an english person when they tell you it's not raining. i wish i could bite my nails.

08.04.2011: maybe i should explain why i've had to have braces, since people seem to be a bit confused. even my dentist's assistant didn't understand it at first, not until i was allowed to close my mouth and she could see my bite, how my teeth rub against each other. it's either braces or i lose my teeth before my mind. it was an easy decision. being able to scare small kids (and select animals) is just a bonus.

for the most my mouth is fine during the day. i'm at work and i can sit in silence, rinsing my gums around with hot water (we're not allowed to drink hard liquor at work, at least not before lunch). when i get home and have someone to talk to, all boring stuff about how hard my day was and boohoo someone was mean to me because i didn't balance my parenthesis, that's when i start hurting. i have a wire across the roof of my mouth that joins my two back molars together, anchoring my teeth it place. it constantly rubs on my tongue, and is the reason i can't eat anything stringy or fibrous without getting extremely aggitated.

i'm about to get extremely uptight about dental hygiene. i guess that isn't a bad thing. since julie is away for the weekend you can picture me in the queue of fakta with a frozen pizza, a six pack, and a large bottle of mouth wash. although i just found a can of cider in the fridge, so i probably wont get that far. fuck it.

banana in small chunks - my new favourite food.

actually, i quite like my braces. i like how my teeth feel like they're being constantly hugged. what i'm not enjoying is the deepening 'v' imprint on my tongue.

06.04.2011: braces, as a word it massively fails to either summarize or communicate the junk of alien metal that's now glued and wrapped around my teeth. my mouth has become a dangerous place. it is it's own jew harp. and it kind of hurts.

any excuse for too much whiskey.

but i'm actually happy for this bizarre and interesting experience. i had enough time to contemplate it whilst lying rigid in the dentist chair for over two hours. my arm went dead twice and i barely swallowed once every quarter hour. i was lying there thinking about all the young boys and girls going through the same thing, tears streaming down their face as they're systematically made ugly and unpopular, but i had to stop because it hurt when i laughed. i'm just glad that i'm dealing with this now rather than when i was a teenager.

not that i was really using my mouth properly back then.

but yeah, it's all fun and games until i wake in the middle of the night with wires poking through my cheek and blood all up over the place (just incase, this obviously hasn't actually happened - yet).

i can honestly say i don't care how it looks. but maybe that's because it looks ok. and it only looks ok because you can't really see them. if i had translucent cheeks it'd be a different matter. and i'm sure i'll get used to the feeling. my cheeks will toughen up and callous. or something. the only problem is eating. it's all new, so i'm over cautious about all the weird bits sticking out, that weird wire across the roof of my mouth that everything can get wrapped around. she told me no steak. nevermind.

i hope they're alcohol resistant. i guess they don't have to worry about that with most cases.

02.04.2011: this spring thing, it happens all too slowly.

mogwai was a very last minute decision. i'd completely forgotten about them playing in copenhagen, until julie saw their poster outside vega at the aggrolites concert (who were using couch guitar straps, i should have mentioned). i had a work dinner the same night, and didn't want to rush that and leave early. also, the venue they were playing, although apparently being quite good, is also much larger than what i can be generally bothered to deal with. anyway, it was all jolle's fault, him calling me up to ask if i could print out his ticket. so long as no one else was going i didn't mind. what i couldn't deal with was "why weren't you there? it was amaaaaaazing.

it was ok. but those glaswegians have a lot to live up to when it comes to me. i was there in '99, whatever comes after is just a let down. but they are great aren't they? it was weird though, that the crowd was full of so many kids. weren't mogwai big in the late nineties? ten years ago you were rocking out to bamse og kylling, you weren't there when mogwai went horn to headstock with satan and did it like herod. um, nevermind.

i'd rather have seen glassjaw. but..

also too much desktop dungeon (i recommend the old tileset).

and did i say how great brainstrings are? (i recommend the advanced, which despite being called 'advanced' is no harder)

anyway, posh copenhagen restaurants are totally overrated. i'm always more impressed with the more modest food christiania has to offer, especially the cosy inexpensive place (whatever it's called), but maybe that's just because i'm a vegetarian and these 'posh' restaurants are lost without their meat. i mean, the food was good, but far from fantastic. the wine was excellent. madklubben my ass.

i see a pattern forming. like inverting a sphere.

i never made sausages before, but these were pretty good. especially the day after.

and we went on a giant hogweed hunt, cycling in the sun without a jacket for the first time in longer than i can remember (yes it's been a painful window winter), taking photos for julie's seminar next week (or whenever it is). only i left my camera's memory card in my computer and that made me feel utterly useless. of all the dumb mistakes.

up next- braceface.

28.03.2011: clearly there's little to be done to stop my blog from descending into weekly updates. i did this, i did that, we went to vega to see the aggrolites and it was nice, etc. there's a distinct lack of emotion and conviction. we got new fish (and moss balls!), that was nice too. we finished up the franzosisch ist sexy recordings. that was really nice. the mini-party afterwards was nice too. the new shuffler songs are nice. what else is nice? accidentally stealing crates of beer from netto? eating christiania falafel in the last of the evening sun? (didn't you hear? it's spring again.)

i blame facebook. i'm so fed up of hearing other people's shit i just can't bare to contribute to it on a regular basis. i've never had the misconception that anything i've put on my website has worth. but it never quite pissed me off so much before.

do you want to know what i'm having for dinner today?

i carry on regardless. mostly out of some misguided determination. i don't know.

i actually have a messy bundle of thoughts that i want to get down, regarding the music industry, campfires, and the internet. but the ideas are still too disorganised. i'm having trouble pulling all the threads together into something that's linear and cohesive.

alternatively, you could simultaneously watch the original rebecca black video and the death metal friday 'parody' (which can't possibly be the correct word). that pretty much sums up everything i have to say. and if you get the two 'songs' in time it's a quite remarkable. it sounds more like brokencyde than brokencyde. i guess we all lose.

19.03.2011: i really liked george monbiot's post about nuclear power.

all your reactionary comments actually just annoy me. suddenly everyone is vilifying nuclear power. where did you come from? when did you ever give a shit about this stuff before? infact, i've barely heard a handful of people speak out about environmental issues since cop15 fell apart. it's pathetic that it takes a disaster to make people give a shit. and this isn't even the primary reason anti-nuclear people have been anti-nuclear (um, citation needed). but nevermind.

there was also a really interesting article about left-wing depression on the information website the other day (it's in danish but that's nothing you can't deal with). we're depressed because the world is going to shit and no one cares? well, duh.

to cheer you up there's a new drunken butterfly comic and a new drunken butterfly song over on the drunken butterfly website. or for the comic you can just click this:

eating out three nights in a row? we're not even that posh.

and, oh no, not desktop dungeon again..

17.03.2011: one of the things i need to do (because i'm getting braces) is to stop biting my nails. i'm not sure how important it is, but it does seem a reasonable thing to do. i also think it'll be quite easy. what i realised is that i don't bite my nails habitually, i only bite them when they need shortening. so to this end we bought a pair of nail scissors.

how do you people do this? it's horrible. it feels like some kind of self-abuse. it's methodical, and almost surgical when doing it in the bathroom. and worst of all it just feels weird. i can get my nails uncomfortable short, but they're still biteable. how is it that it doesn't perform that cut quite as well as my teeth? but either way it's working. i don't think i've bitten my nails since. now i just need it to be routine.

of course i'll miss biting my nails, as gross as that sounds. i don't know.

what else is weird is that i've started drinking lots of hot water. it's like a coffee replacement except i drink two or three times as much. there's something about hot water i like. this is great except the coffee machine just broke, which means i have no access to hot water. at least i'm not craving the caffine though.

an interesting fact - there hasn't been a single cyclist fatality on the roads in denmark all winter. not only is this the first death free winter we've had since they started recording the data (which is when? i don't know because some idiot journalist thought that wasn't an important statistic), but also the longest period without one (five months). has the weather been so bad the people just haven't used their bikes? (btw, we had a snow storm last night, in the middle of march, are you freaking shitting me?) it'd be interesting to see figures on the change in the number of cyclists between this winter and previous ones.

damnit i want a coffee now.

15.03.2011: i'm going to need a coffee if i'm going to make this work. but first, can any french person explain to me why gare de lyon is in paris?

second random thought of the day, how much power google could save on a global level if they turned their background black? all those monitors..

anyway, my weekend was great. how was yours?

there was punks undead on friday, with a friendly bartender and above average quality bands. then on saturday we went to the aquarium. some photos:

and maybe some more if you're still enjoying them:

plus dinner out in vesterbro. gin and tonic, and various bottles of wine. a lovely apartment. i think i talked too much. i can't help it if gin makes me excitable. hoarding pisatchios. you shouldn't ask me about my band.

ask me instead about rubik's cubes and mobius transformations. or why this horse.

and i thought i might drop a link to test their logik for being so badass. they went through a whole bunch of ridiculous shit after the G20 meeting in toronto, but now they're apparently back and even more hardcore.

i ran 4.5km last night. does that count for something?

09.03.2011: i got that jittery work vibe going on. need something. a milkshake. or a run through the forest. to sit sunning in some placa del somewhere with nothing to do but drink that milkshake. and a beer.

i miss toronto. or some weird notion of toronto in the spring with a freshness in the air, an association that makes no sense given big city pollution. a bright and uplifting free-ness. as opposed to this soul sucking danish grey grimness. even when the sun's out and the skies all lovely and all that, it's still grey everywhere you look.

that wooden red box, i've seen that a few times now floating by under the bridge. stuck on its sheet of ice, pushed back and forth up the canal by the tide or the wind or whatever strange force it is that makes the ice appear and disappear so fast.

it used be autumn that made me restless.

now it's just a lack of coffee.

self inflicting crazyness. been drinking hot water all morning. but i kind of like that. hot water.

08.03.2011: i thought maybe you'd like to see my skull:

you can also see my profile, which is actually quite scary. here is some more of my teeth:

if i used desktop wallpaper i'd definitely have that up on my screens, almost a metre wide.

and then what else?

last week seemed like all preparation for our gig on friday, but then the end of the week disappeared in flash flu. cough smell like swimming pool. i didn't even manage to get out of bed until 3pm on friday. which i remember surprising me at the time. maybe "shocked" is a better choice of word. just wiped out.

anyway, i was useless. but everything turned out ok in the end, like these things always do.

you should have seen our pedal setup. it was sick through. and worth it apparently. most of the people who could stand to listen to us said the noise was good. i don't know, i couldn't really hear it.

i'm not sure what i should think when people say our noise outro is the best part of our set. are our songs that bad?

i have too much gear to carry around these days.

um. on saturday i failed again to find a satisfactory spatula in town. just brainstrings. but at least there were good hot chocolates to be had in christianshavn (twice).

and i still have all the songs from the danish kids eurovision going round in my head.

23.02.2011: the worst thing about my dentist appointment at 8:15am was that i had to deal with two rush hours. one into town from the south and one into town from the north.

or that we've ran out of coffee at work. which has nothing to do with anything. but it's really not helping.

have you ever noticed how devoid of emotion the facebook emoticons are? it's very telling.

actually, we've had facebook 'temporarily' banned at work. i think it's interesting. it's not something i'll miss. i only checked it whenever i was waiting for something very slow to load anyway. so the "ten minutes a day" that people might spend on facebook, which might add up (ten minutes of salary a day per person) to something in the region of a significant amount of yearly profit, is actually part of a much more complicated venn diagram. what i don't particularly like (in a wishy washy way) is that facebook has actually been blocked. it's the implied lack of trust. but i only mean this in a very general way anyway. infact, i think more people should block facebook. whole countries even. continents.

but back to my teeth. the best news is that my x-rays came back fine (currently working on getting copies) and i don't need anything doing that will involve blood squirting violently from my mouth. however, it does look likely that i'll be getting braces. i keep changing my mind over what i think about this. i play it very cool at the dentist, looking at the moulds of my teeth. something animal. or alien. dinosaur. i don't know. the orthodontist reassures me that it is a big deal. i just sit there making gnashing motions with my disembodied teeth. yeah, whatever. aslong as kids aren't scared of me i really don't care. no i do. i hate the idea of having a large amount of metal in my mouth (apparently not enough to set off airport alarms). it's the molar anchors that particularly disturb me. and do i care if i'm 60 and have no teeth?

anyway. that is that. i feel good about it now i know more about it.

17.02.2011: so, my new band had a gig, and i just realised that i've not even mentioned the fact that i joined a new band. we're called "the shuffler", or some not yet confirmed variation around the word "shuffler". our current repetoire is a bit like the soundtrack from the harder they come (love that "infinitely more intelligent than last tango in paris") broken up by the likes of edwin starr and dandy livingstone. some soulful ska.

but we're good. i mean, i already thought we were good, i've been really enjoying playing with these guys (playing with musicians, y'know, it's very different. we even have a guy on saxophone). but what i didn't expect was such a good reception from our first gig. we had people dancing all the way to the back of the room. people seemed genuinely impressed. there was skanking to be had. and that ashdown amp was punchy.

of course, playing at quarter to twelve after a few hours of beers costing only 10kr each probably helped.

i also have to comment on what a thoroughly great place bumzen is. it's clean and well organised (apart from the lack of toilet roll - if you don't want band members wandering up into your collective area and ruining your roleplaying game, then maybe you want to distribute the toilet roll throughout the house?), and it's huge. it's like a labyrinth up there. good stuff.

rant required though. if these places are going to put up no smoking signs they should enforce them. i'm fucking sick of people smoking at venues. aggresively sick. i'm sure half of the people smoking would happily take it outside, but because of the couple of selfish assholes who can't be bothered, of course everyone just smokes inside. what the fuck makes them think that it's ok? it's because they're not asked not too. there's actually been a couple of nights recently when i've gone home because people were going to a smoking bar and i wouldn't follow. now that's my decision and that's fine, what pisses me off is when people smoke in no-smoking places. i was half tempted to say something on stage, but it would have made me unpopular at a time that we needed to be popular. but seriously, fuck all these people. and at a squat, where people are uptight about so many things (and in a good way, that is no dis), why can't they take a proper stand on smoking? it makes no sense. fuck all of you.

ok. that was cathartic. except i can still smell smoke in my hair, even after having washed it.

17.02.2011: feeling nostalgic today. so typical of me in the early morning, stuck home on my own, waiting for spring. nostalgic for places i haven't even been to. my first year in brighton and the six months i spent in new york. that kind of nostalgia. i think i'm just missing the summer. craving those warm evenings spent sitting out on the fire escape. the eternal buzz of the city. happy doing nothing because nothing feels like so much.

and i never did solve the mystery of the phantom peanut smell

a sudden craving for malt loaf

the cube (now solved, easier than it looks):

what's most exciting about that is what i took the photos with. wooh. and sorry for the terrible perspective in the stitch. the composition is just horrible. but i don't seem to mind.

anyway. screen hurts eyes hurts brain. causes dizziness causes cold sweat.

15.02.2011: it feels somehow dirty paying to play a gig, and everything about this particular endeavor reaks of money-making, but the level of actual professionalism (compared with amatuer posings) and the quality of the venue made friday night a good experience. considering there were no sound checks for any of the bands, and only a five minute change over time, the whole thing was very impressive (oh, apart from the teenie size of the beers). there were eight bands, one of which had thirteen members, and it went smooth.

we felt we did a good job, and either way i thoroughly enjoyed it. we got a well deserved 80 votes, which may have been less than all of the other bands (yes, we placed last), but considering we'd only sold 13 tickets it's a good score. who were these 64 people who had never heard us before and decided to tick our box? thanks, i guess.

probably we won the "at least interesting" vote (always good feedback to get). the night covered a wide range of styles, but with a large amount of generic bore - the more people you appeal to, the less people you really engage. at least we fronted some energy. and none of that cockrock shit. with your spandex and your leather, are you shitting me? and one of the bands actually managed to trick me into thinking i was listening to "inbetween band music". but anyway, the top bands deserved to win, my analysis isn't supposed to make me sound like a sore loser. last place was much more satisfying than seventh.

club mate. baby monkey. something about a pig. barbara streisand, which is a story i'd love to recount, but was just one of those moments you can't really do justice. not without sounding like an asshole.

my weekend needed more weekend. even with two brunches and two band practices. too many brief encounters.

and i can't believe how cold it suddenly got. i nearly tripped over into permanent hibernation mode walking home on friday night. if it wasn't for all those beers i'd drank i'd probably not have made it.

also the charger/powersupply people called me. they didn't exactly apologise, but explained that new sony chargers had come in and they were shipping one to me straight away. they were even going to refund my postage and packaging. just, it would be really nice if i altered the feedback i'd left them on amazon. what, the brutally honest feedback about how you shipped me something completely different and inferior to what i ordered? (also it interferes with the radio if it's in the same room.) i guess good service isn't dead, you just need to publically complain first.

10.02.2011: in the same way that just now i thought "fuck it i'll have another coffee even though it's kind of late", i thought, "fuck it i'll drink a beer whilst walking home tonight". there's a first time for everything and it was brilliant. even if my work mates think i'm an alcoholic now. or at least think that everyone would think i looked like an alcoholic, which is near enough anyway the same thing. for me it's just typically danish, but then what decade are we living in again anyway?

the only part that felt weird was waiting in the queue. i had a single can of tuborg classic on the conveyor, and the woman in front had a single tub of yoghurt. what the fuck are we doing?

what i should be ranting about is CHARGERS4U. with a name like that i know you're not going to do business with them, but since it was through amazon (and i was desperate) i thought it would be ok. also because they charge less about a fifth or what sony are charging for a replacement powersupply if you contact them directly. anyway, what makes them think that it's ok, that when someone orders a sony powersupply (output: 19.5V 3.9a) and it turns out that it's out of stock, to instead ship a cheap made-in-china knockoff brand that doesn't even have the same output. you useless idiots. it's the same vague shape and colour, and kind of does the same job, so it's ok right?

i should return it out of principal, but i probably wont get the shipping cost back, and a replacement charger is harder to find than i'd thought. so fuck it. if it dies in three months i'll blow their depot sky high, or whatever the fuck iamspartacus.

just leave me alone.

funny how american apparel and american airlines have identical logos. and also, helvetica is swiss. fucking yanks. you should be using arial. or comic sans.

and to complain a little bit more, why would you not bundle a memory card into a digital camera kit? i wouldn't have minded if the memory card had arrived before the camera, but now i have a camera and can't take any pictures. humph.

08.02.2011: i tried to get out of bed on the right side this morning, but sometimes it's just too much effort. sometimes people just don't deserve it.

was lying awake all night listening to the wind. plotting my revenge. all the angry things i could whisper into your childrens' ears. and outside there's giant sheet metal flying around, probably flown all the way here from texas, wherever it is that they roof their shacks with corrugated steel. there's dogs still attached to their leads hanging from the trees. cars blown into the middle of the roads. trees at all angles. even the bicycles in the basement had been blown over.

i'm not exagerating. i'm just making it up. but someone i work with, all the scaffolding on the building across from their apartment came down into the street during the night. crash, just like that.

if buildings will get in the way..

anyway, i can't believe the kidsbop version of since u been gone still makes me so happy (don't miss the kid at 2:37, he's too cool). it's just so fucking incredible, i don't know. and i was almost impressed by their cover of 'i kissed a girl' (just check out that thumping bass), but then i realised it was fake. shame on you.

07.02.2011: the sickest rubikesque cube you've never seen just landed on my desk. it's clunky and clumsy but terrifyingly sexy. as soon as my new camera (whoops) arrives i'll take a picture to prove it. its design and engineering is amazing. unfortuantely it's a little two tight, and even after taking it apart a little (quite the struggle) i still couldn't get at the screws to loosen it. not yet at least.

damn, i hate it how people start buying all kinds of junk when they get a new job. every day i've had something new arrive. a UV filter, a new camera bag, books. it's embarrassing.

about as embarrassing as suddenly realising my mouse has buttons on it to control its sensitivity. it's not a caffine problem after all.

but actually, i was buying excessive cubes long before i got a job. so whatever.

and then my laptop power supply died. chirping like a bird. i should have ordered a replacement (not from sony) when i first heard it squeaking, but nevermind. i can live without my laptop for a week.

and then i go and type my work alarm code into the ATM instead of my PIN code and lose the use of my card. the two codes are spookily similar, but not identical. this is something messed up to do with the fact that i was allowed to choose my own door code. if i'd done it consciously, having the same code for both would actually make some sense. but as far as i knew i was picking random numbers. like an idiot.

this gets me back to thinking how many random codes we have to remember. i know three door/alarm codes, three PIN numbers, my CPR number (also required to get into netbanks). then there's the countless passwords. email, paypal, webhosting, ftp, 'social' networks. it will drive us all crazy. all these numbers floating around in areas of our brains that we should be using for other more important tasks.

like solving rubik's cubes.

01.02.2011: i'm feeling a little hungover today (only a little), but that's ok. because it's a tuesday. sitting here waiting for the air india website to load. still waiting.

i just received an email from the people who booked us for our gig on febuary 11th at rust (yes, a 'proper' venue), in which they remind us, quite seriously, to change our strings and check that our cables work. they tell us to make sure there's enough gap between songs for the audience to clap. and if we have another gig in the temporal vicinity we should be prioritising this one. i'm tempted to email them back and tell them to fuck off. but nevermind. best wait til i'm on stage for that. fucking morons.

anyway, there was a weekend and its highlight was saturday brunch. it needs to be written about so that i get the most value out of it, since it was probably the most expensive brunch i've ever eaten (translated into dollars, about 30 bucks a plate, but this is just how denmark rolls), but it was incredible. largest damn brunch i've ever seen, and half of it was fruit. like a whole bunch of grapes. a whole passionfruit, a whole plum, oranges and pineapple and dragonfruit. melons, oranges, cranberries, blackberries. and there was fritata and falafel and many different types of salad and humus. the best garlic buttered toast ever. stuffed peppers. more fruit. probably even more than i remember. it took hours to eat it all.

and i found a yamaha electone at the recycling station. but left it. it was just too large and heavy and what would i have done with it in a few months when i was bored with? give it away to someone who would really want one? i know i know. please don't hate me.

been playing dominos. hours of dominos. really getting into my dominos.

here's an interesting piece from channel4 - israeli soldiers told to cleanse gaza. and with a very unsuitable soundtrack, what the fuck were they thinking?

and some beautiful protest porn.

28.01.2011: i haven't found any official announcements from google (ok, here maybe), but it seems that they've started (read as "set a precedent for") actively censoring some of their services when people might be searching to illegaly download copywrited material.

the word "censoring" is a tricky one here, because everyone who reads that will instantly make a wrong presumption on what it means. this article may be carefully written, but if you read the introductory paragraph alone then you're going to be misled.

you'll know i'm no fan of the RIAA/MPAA conglomerate hyrdahyperbeast, or whatever the fuck you might call it, but this a little more complicated than google simply giving in to pressure from those heinous and artisically destructive organisations. what google have done is acutally quite interesting.

firstly, and most importantly, there is no change in their search results. whatever mischievous seach terms you sumbit, google will still come back with the same naughty copyright infringing websites. this is not china. the difference is that when you're searching for a movie (for example), google will not suggest to you that perhaps what you're searching for is a torrent of said film. i suspect they've been doing this with porn related terms ever since they started making search suggestions (or else everything you typed would come back drenched in vile porn language). if you want a torrent, google gives you a torrent. if you don't know you want a torrent, google wont suggest it to you. they're effectively making themselves non-complicit.

so, i find myself thinking it's actually pretty clever what they've done. on a superficial level i have no problem with it. i mean, i hate that autocomplete service anyway. but still, it's a move in a very dangerous direction, and it's not something anybody should be happy about. except those gaping assholes over at the RIAA. it seems to me we just need to work extra hard in promoting torrenting. out of spite if nothing else.

25.01.2011: no, i'm just in a bad mood today. shouldn't go to bed drinking whiskey. shouldn't wake me up in the middle of a gig when i'm trying to fix my pedal board.

i cut a woman up really badly (i apologise for how bad this sentence sounds) whilst cycling to work this morning. and not much else puts me in worse mood than when i know it's me being the asshole. she didn't fall off, not exactly. and i'm not sure what i was supposed to do in this situation, when i'm on the wrong side of a row of slow cyclists (apparently not so slow). and i did indicate and all that. but still whatever either anyway. i fucked up.

on a vague theme, there's a sentence i can't get out of my head. from joey comeau's review of a nightmare on elm street, "It's difficult to praise a movie for its portrayal of a strong female when that same movie elicits thrills from the audience by getting her naked and then threatening her vagina with knives".

on a more serious note, samuel ruiz has died. what i find so interesting about him is how someone from the catholic church (fundamentally an imperialistic organisation) was so important in the zapista uprising. and not just in his role as mediator, long before 1994 he had been working with indigenous communities, laying down some of the political and ideological groundwork that enabled the zapatistas to be successful in these areas, pulling these communities together. and to some degree, the zapatistas took most of the credit for this (there's no argueing that it was them who brought the struggle into the focus of the international media).

how i pictured it, the progress that they made in chiapas, as hard as it is to quantify (especially given claims that NAFTA was a death sentence for the indigenous people), couldn't have been achieved without both the zapatistas and samuel ruiz. and ruiz always seems very much overlooked when it comes to the literature on this stuff. so it was nice to hear that he was actually nominated several times for a nobel peace prize. i think it's just a shame he never won one.

there's a semi-decent obituary here, if you're interested.

"President Felipe Calderons office just Tweeted condolences"

24.01.2011: natalie portman is my new favourite brand. not because of her performance in black swan (which of course helps), nor her vegan shoe line, but because she's a fucking badass.

"i'll kill your fucking dog for fun, so don't push me."

for contrast, did i ever tell you how much i love nicholas cage? that is a man still working in hollywood. fucking unbelievable.

i also lost a good portion of sunday listening to old mark kermode movie reviews. i can't place it, but they're so very compelling. it's probably just because he hates michael bey more than i do. like someone kind of said (perhaps craig thompson), the best relationships are based on mutual hate.

and if you ever needed a reason to hate simon mayo, i guess you could just listen to him.

right now i'm listening to grilly's latest mix. it's especially great if you skip the diggers' song (sorry grilly, it's just too long, even if it does seque beautifully into alan moore).

random thought, do people spell seque like segway yet? like expresso but worse.

and scary like how the phrase "youtube party" has become so commonplace. an accident caused by youtube being one of the easiet ways to find whatever music you wanted to listen to, but also an infinite amount of "omg you have to see this video". or not all of us want to listen to nazi punk.

i hate misspelt variable names.

but i like this quote "Nothing less is required than a redesign of the whole food system to bring sustainability to the fore." from here.

19.01.2011: whoever it was who swapped the 'stickers' around on my rubik's cube (quite methodically, i must add) has two options. they can either confess, in which case i'll never trust them with anything ever again. they'll also never be invited around for dinner or any other social activities (only beatings). or, they can hope that i never find out it was them, and our friendship can carry on as normal, albeit as a sham. like any marriage, our relationship will be built on a lie. the space between us has forever been darkened. your hugs are tainted, covered in evil's seed.

actually, i don't know why i'm trying to make whoever did it feel so bad. i guess i just like making people feel bad. fuck with the law of the cube, will you?

it was an interesting problem, to be fair, trying to figure out exactly which colours needed to be swapped back so that my cube didn't end up in pieces or with a parity error (e.g. which of the two green face blocks was the imposter). and it was almost fun, once i'd realised the stickers hadn't been peeled off and reapplied (for that i would have killed you). but whilst being almost fun it was also fucking annoying.

anyway, for a moment there and in my tired state, reality became a little maleable. lightly touching that dream state when you're not sure if you're awake or not. when you know whatever's happening doesn't make any sense, but you can't quite clarify why. which is something difficult to achieve without the use of various fungi or selective mexican vegetation. and then the confused paranoia - has my cube always been like this? did i do this? (surely no one else would have the audacity.) am i turning colour blind? how can something look so right but be so wrong?

the cube is infallible. just don't fuck with it.

17.01.2011: i haven't seen the sun for what seems like weeks now. the fog was nice, but my vitamin d levels must be totally bottoming out. and the blackening snow lying at the side of the road is just depressing. spring is just the uncovering of dead animals that have been hidden beneath the ice.

anyway. the first person to buy me one of oskar van deventer's gear shifts (in black) wins lifetime friendship. joking aside (i'm not actually joking at all), that video must be watched. anyone want to join me in petitioning uwe meffert to mass produce them?

also, i'm not the kind of asshole who normally talks about the golden globe awards (or musicals), but the supporting actor and actress awards that went to glee were more than deserved. i mean, i'd have given them both to john noble, but lynch and colfer would definitely be my second choices.

and i have to drop a link to this aphex twin girl video. cos it's the most terrifying cute thing i've seen in a while.

most annoying comment on facebook this morning "omfg i am literally roflmfao".

14.01.2011: so i was fitted out in a full spaceman suit, helmet and all, and i was walking seemingly uninhibited through a field of swaying golden corn. the early morning sun ripe and all encompasing above. and something to do with a movie, so of course it was impeccably well lit all over. my boots were just shiny beautiful, slowly finding their way along a path that led up to what i discovered was the top of a very high cliff, where the path lassoed itself around a rocky outcrop, passing almost impossibly far out over the edge. and i was thinking, there is no way i can walk around that without falling, not with what i'm wearing.

i could only have been asleep for three minutes, and in the dream i remembered that i'd snoozed my alarm. and i was thinking, if i slip off this cliff i'll wake up with a start, making it easier to claw my way out of bed and into the shower. plus y'know, it would be kind of fun to jump and all that.

so i followed the path around the rock, gripping its crumbling edges as well as my michelin man mittens would allow, all the way to the point of no return. and there couldn't have been more than half a meters clearance between the path and the rocky overhang. so much for my great plan.

how is it that falling in dreams actually feels like falling? i always presumed it was the flight/fright response - the part of the brain which controls adrenalin release not being able to tell the difference between reality and imagination (whatever better word you have for dreaming, i don't know). and maybe that's why these falls never last as long as you think they should. i hit the shallow water almost instantly, to the point of disappointment. at that height my brain should process the fall as about 9.5 seconds (figuring the cliff was about 440m high, somewhat unnecesarily the height of the world trade centre, and yes my brain is a vacuum), but instead the fall is just the initial rush of freefall. and this is what i was thinking about as the currents dragged me out to sea and into my bed.

but no, it didn't work. getting out of bed seemed as hard as it had when i'd first woken up and snoozed my alarm.

except, an alarm going off also wakes you with a jolt.

either way i have nowhere left to take this thought. not whilst awake. but it was still a pleasant enough dream.

i could really get used to wearing slippers at work.

13.01.2011: has it been almost a week already? i guess a small amount of sickness at the start of the week knocks everything about a little. no worries there.

except i feel sensitive to unlevel floors today. ive nearly fallen over twice when i felt the ground tipping.

three punctures on three different wheels in two weeks is just not fucking fair. i do like walking to work though.

question of the day, should laurence microwave his burrito?

new young pony club are again making me very happy. tahita is clearly very cool, and not just because her name looks like 'tahini'.

and no one but me can work to patric catani. "Meanwhile, [Gina] D'Orio played Patty Hearst in a musical by Stereo Total's Brezel Goring"

i wish i could pretend the history of binary was a random wiki hit. pingala ftw.

how about my third trip to statsforvaltningen hovedstaden? it makes a fine contrast to the previous two. it turns out the metro runs to flintholm, so it took under twenty minutes to get there (and during rush hour). there were three people ahead of me in the queue, and none of them complicated, so i was waiting hardly any time at all. i was served by a young woman who was friendly and polite. she didn't even need to see all of the documents that the previous guy had demanded from me, which suggests that had i seen her the previous week i'd have my papers sorted by now. it took no time and was almost pleasant. so what the fuck denmark?

i'm also very proud about the new internet we have at home, which is paid for by my company. the new modem worked straight out of the box with with no hassle (once i'd found the socket to plug it into, that was the tricky part. i was about to phone them to complain). it's faster and sexier. at least i'm presuming it works faster, since the light on the front blinks faster than our old modem, and it looks a bit more sci-fi and a bit less 90s.

07.01.2011: friday, random thought day.

including such gems as, it's amazing how easily i adapted to a 37 hour work week. and, did i always like the first head automatica album? or is just because i've been watching too much glee that it's suddenly appealing to me?

after glee i should craving ATR, not more pop. wow.

and two punctures on two different bikes in one week? i can't find a clean patch of snow big enough to write "fuck you" in. not as large as it needs to be.

but cycling to work after fresh snow is like running the death star. snow piled high on either side of you, pedals cutting a wavey groove in the banks. very single file, very slow. tie fighters coming at you from all angles. whatever.

i'm missing my old band. which one? all of them.

i like this video. and i didn't realise the 1/1 scale gundam moved.

"if you start talking to yourself i'm not going to start disagreeing with you"

and also i love this sentence - "some of the highest quality ethnic features with comprehensive story lines and excellent production value". taking from an article about porn.

02.01.2011: i started yesterday by writing "i know it's early days yet, but today is a clear contender for worst day of 2011. and actually, i'm still too pissed about everything to write about it. so fuck it and off with you".

helpful and informative, as ever. as usual.

i'd woken up earlier than normal so i could cycle to statsforvaltningen hovedstaden, which is conveniently located all the way over on the other side of the city, as all important governmental offices that you need to interact with always seem to be. and they're about as fucking helpful too. but already with the rage? i clearly need a cup of tea.

anyway, it was dark and it was shitty and everyone on the road was an asshole. i saw one cyclist swerve around a stationary car and end up cycling into a bank of snow. then he acted as if it wasn't his fault. at least i could laugh at that.

so i get there nice and early, but there's a piece of paper on the office door advertising their new opening times. 12am on a tuesday. the woman there is so kind to point out that she just checked the website and the new times are up there. yes, but they weren't yesterday when i booked my time of work. and google has my back on this. whatever, there was nothing i could do but speed back into town and be only half an hour late for work.

which is good because i was the only member of my team who had come in. how can they all be sick? i don't want to know either.

so i cycled back out there before lunch. it should have only take half an hour, except i had a slow puncture. i rode most of the way but had to stop at bicycle shops to keep pumping it up. this is not advisable if you care about your wheels, but it worked, and i start thinking that maybe it wasn't punctured after all.

so i'm there and it's open and as the ticker ticks over to 702 i take number 724. the room is packed and i'm looking at a 45 minute wait. i wouldn't mind, but i was here first, three hours ago. i don't need the stress, but i don't mind going through it just once to get this shit out of the way.

over forty minutes later this guy is flicking through my tax forms, "no work in 2006? no income in 2007? nothing in 2008?". then he's looking at my current job, "when did you start working? it says here you started in novemeber 2011". i explain to him that my boss wrote that, and it's obviously a mistake. but he also wants to see my payslips, which i don't have because they don't physically exist. i ask him if there's any way i can print them out here, but they don't have such facilities. they have nothing useful. he's also intermittently talking to me in danish, and my danish is good enough to know that he's using overly complicated words, ones that 90% of the people in this room wont understand, and he's doing it on purpose.

the only good thing that came out of this was that he told me it does't matter that my current permit runs out next week, which makes me wonder what it is i'm actually applying for. and why am i making all this effort?

but just fucking brilliant. and then of course my tyre is completely flat so i have to take the train back into the city, carrying my bike up all the stairs, then back down again because the ticket machine is on the other platform. plus i have no idea what direction i'm supposed to be going in and there's no map. also the ticket machine only takes coins or cards, and if it even excepts normal visa cards (rare in denmark, believe it or not, i don't care) there's almost zero chance of it accepting mine, since it has already expired (it stopped working on the internet almost two weeks before the bank dispatched me a new card). anyway, i'm about to start swearing again so nevermind.

in the end everything was ok. at least in terms of me getting back to my office and getting dinner. but now i've got a fucking greasy mouse to remind me of all that hassle. every day. fuck it. where are the clean wipes in this place?

and also, if they're then going to be running a U2 marathon at the gym, to be honest i'd rather be fat and unhealthy. i'd rather be dead.

and some good news from the sea shepherds. because they look like pirates, but are actually way cooler (yes, cooler than pirates).

02.01.2011: new year and all that, and it's also my five year anniversary of moving to denmark. the thought generates a 'wow' and a sigh. not because it seems like time has gone so quickly (it hasn't, it's flowed at a good pace), but what have i really achieved in last five years? stuff, for sure. but i mean, i could have gotten a phd (no thanks) or had five children (even more no thanks).

wtf am i saying? blah blah blah. i had a point but i lost it. nevermind i fucking hate all that new year's introspection bullshit, resolutions and omg another year, whatever. so i apologise for that. it's not what i was getting at.

um, my residence permit is about to run out.

but it was also a pleasant evening. sitting up in alex's kitchen watching the sky flicker epileptic for a whole hour. in every direction as far as you can see, the same coloured fireworks again and again. a whole hour. you people have no timing. you people have no originality. you people have no comprehension of how much money you just fired up into the night.

and then the winds came. an hour into the new year and they could have blown you across the frozen pavement. ice crashing down from rooftops.

at the party i don't know what's more disturbing, that a computer in the corner is streaming the danish eurovision qualifying rounds from last year, or that i recognise it. there's also a butchers knife lying on the table and a large collection of headless champagne bottles. the one i got from work wasn't that great, sorry. and then snowballs come in through the open window and it's time to leave.

on nights like this it should be the public transport workers we're cheering. the shit they deal with at 4am. people trying to drag christmas trees onto the train. people cramming into the bus like a zombie hoard. and probably all that puke.

anyway. my two beers of the night were fucking excellent and worth noting. brewdog's paradox and mikkeller's beer geek brunch. smoked whiskey tar in a glass. coffee beans shat out by weasels. something like that. most expensive damn beer i ever bought. but i was celebrating.

we were kind of celebrating.

29.12.2010: and that was what became of christmas. now it's over i feel like i missed something. straight back to work with no tinsel or trifle. my distinct lack of giving. but it was pleasant, all i did was eat and drink. i'm sick of eating. and i know i said i'd go back to being dairyfree after new years, but fuck the waiting.

this doesn't even have anything to do with me reading jonathan safran foer's eating animals, which is a much friendlier read for all you meat eaters than the no nonsense guide to animal rights (which of course you'll never read). he has compassion for your fleshy needs. but anyway i should save all my comments until i've finished the book, then i can go on a quote binge. starting with natalie portman, who said it turned her "from a twenty-year vegetarian to a vegan activist". i suppose that really puts you off, nevermind.

either way, too much eating. also the mix of beer, aquavit, fernet branca, whiskey, wine, icewine, and cognac that christmas eve brought (in that order). which was just awesome. it's exactly what you need when it's minus 12 outside. that and a julebrus.

darkness falls before 4pm, but norway has the most enchanting evening skies. as if the cold absorbs all the colours of the day and releases them slowly as the sun sets. if only the cold didn't also kill your camera. crunch.

still thinking about those nut roasts and pies. my new frying pan.

muse are really working it for me today. gobybus is not.

anyway, happy new year. there's something i can wish you sincerely.

22.12.2010: passing over the canal you can see the paths the water taxis cut through the ice. it's cold like the air is a solid mass that hurts to push through. it stings your throat on the way down. and there are dead things hiding under the snow.

det lugter som nisser..

anyway. i'm travelling to norway tonight and will be there until late on the 28th. i don't have my phone so if you want to contact me it'll have to be by email. we can skype or gtalk or whatever it is you kids do these days. i can adapt. just please stop asking me to have the new facebook profile. do not want.

there's also been a new drunken butterfly. it's a bit late because it involves a lot of other people and i really wanted to do them justice. and speaking of which:

what i like most about the comic are all the hidden references that you have no chance of getting by just looking at it. so um, nevermind.

until now, the best music i've found for working to is killing joke. specifically pandemonium and their sel-titled 2003 record. fucking beautiful. and i'm sure he wont like the reference, but jaz coleman should have been cast as lord voldemort. just listen to him. or google image him. whatever it is you kids do these days. i don't know exactly, but either jk rowling or ralph fiennes must be a massive killing joke fan. i saw the barbed hooks penetrate deep into the side of his flesh.

20.12.2010: waking up with a headache, like i've forgotten what it's like to be a teenager. no doubt gnashing my teeth all night. the dentists have my paranoid about my mouth, i can feel my teeth shrinking in my gums. it's just a fever or the coffee. jaws tightening.

christmas shopping is going well this year. for everyone apart from me. it's my own fault, i know. i've just felt busy. or distracted. life changes quickly when you start living it. or paying attention, maybe i should say.

what was i even saying? it was a weekend of simple pleasures. meeting my girlfriend after work (co-habiting life partner? not to be confused with habitual life partner), going to the cinema, sitting on the double seat 'couchs' at the back. drinking a beer. and i'm still impressed how a film about facebook can be so good. also a film that features (exclusively) loathable characters. we can discuss the film extensively, but perhaps over a beer instead? especially if you're buying.

i ate nachos for dinner that night. they were good though.

we bought the kid upstairs a christmas present. aren't we cute? a mini addictaball, highly innappropriate for a five year old, but i'd have loved it at his age. if he can't do, well it still looks neat.

when i grow up i want on of these.

my favourite graph for today. it shows the number of open and close brackets in books (that google has indexed) from 1500 to the present. i love how there was a clear deficit in close brackets between 1650 and 1800. btw, you can also do your own searches. i quite like 'fuck', even if it is a bit puerile. and also colour vs color, and other english vs american spellings.

17.12.2010: fucking sleep. duely, and unfortunately, i've nothing nice to say today. tydeligvis. unless it's about glassjaw, but in which case i'm going to be using words like "fuck" and "fucking" and "fucker". double on the coffee, either way.

oh, and the 62cm x 47cm x 32cm box that was just dumped onto my desk (by me). christmas comes early to my guitars this year.

but repetitive dreams about regular expressions? excuse me. perhaps you can't imagine the horror, it not being quite so visually horrific as the eels.
and the stresses should be out of the way now at least. i am done with danish for the year. exams over, and i did much better this time around. although i still mistaenker that they let me pass, since i've been hanging out in the next module for so long anyway. all the teachers fancy me, that's all. the shit i say when i don't know what i'm saying.
we had a goodbye 'party' for those who had passed the final exam, also the first time i've been out drinking with my classmates. if we spent one lesson a week in a bar socialising like that i'd be fluent in danish by now.
cycling in the snow is still my favourite, not least because everyone else hates it.
salting the back of a snail.

15.12.2010: i spent over an hour at the dentist this morning. they gave me the works - numerous photos taken, four moulds of my teeth made, several different types of x-rays, etc. they also tested my bite pressure. i don't know if it's that people are scared of really biting when they're told to bite as hard as they can, or i'm just dangerous, but the woman had to ask me to stop biting when my jaw started exerting over twice the normal max pressure. 'impressed' isn't at all the right word to describe her reaction, but it will do for now.

don't make me bite you.

the mouldings were the most fun (in three exciting colours! bright green, don't-eat-me purple, and unnaturally-luminescent pink!). like having a glue gun emptied into your mouth, to about the same effect.

oh, and it was almost all done in danish. so wtf, if i can't pass my exam tomorrow i'm a jerk.

damn it now my jaw aches. also the helper woman was a little rough with the spatula things. no problem.

i should have bitten her.

"i love wearing heels, it makes me feel like a pony", somewhat relating to this article about sexy toy makeovers. also, iwhipmyhairbackandforth. osv.

btw, i fucking love jody mcintryre. if only we were all as good at dealing with shitty reporters. and don't ask why i put the only important shit i have to say at the bottom of my posts. like this.

10.12.2010: the internet is a massively distributed and decentralised data system, and for a process to work optimally on the internet it needs to take advantage of, or mirror, this model. classic examples of this are seti@home, bittorrent in general (i'm still very excited about a bittorrent DNS), and LOIC (my personal favourite of course). infact, anonymous is the perfect example, a spontaneous entity that arose from the chaos of internet communications. it can probably be best understood through gaia theory. anonymous is vernadsky's noosphere, an emergent godhead. and through IRL protests it is the internet made flesh, like the multi-dimensional squid poking its tentacles into our world from an unreachable direction. you can not kill it, you can only anger it more.

but anyway, i digress.

this same model applies to wikileaks. the tor project provides a decentralised and encrypted proxy network for people to anonymously and safely send information across the internet, this information can then be rapidly distributed using mirrors and torrents (leaked documents, at least). infact, the only problem with wikileaks is it's face. anonymous wins it zapatista style, but being fronted by a personality (a little too much ego perhaps) opened wikileaks up to the whole debacle that's unrolling right now.

less character and more decentralisation for the win.

i guess that's all i have to say, except when i read "winner to miss peace prize ceremony", and automatically thought "they do a miss peace prize now? will this miss world nonesense never end?"

09.12.2010: shame on you naomi wolf. as an outspoken 'third wave' (whatever that actually means) feminist, you'd think she'd realise the importance of not ridiculing women who are claiming to have been sexually abused.

feminists have worked for decades trying to make people understand what "no" means, and naomi wolf completely undermines it in one facetious blow. sure the circumstances are somewhat complicated, but you don't have to decide between the freedom of information and gender equality. you can seperate these issues, it's not hard. the charges against assange are not an attack on free speech (how the charges are being dealt with is another thing entirely, but keep the issues seperate), they're an attack on a man who's (allegedly) violated two women.

just because you're james bond it doesn't mean that you can get away with abusing women.

there's a nice discussion of the accusations over on this feminist blog (via ms.magazine, i believe), which nicely avoids discussing whether he's actually guilty or not, and is well worth reading. it clarfies why i'm angry in ways the daily mail never could.

anyway, i'd be joining in on the DDOS attacks if only they weren't also targeting the swedish prosecution authority, who are just trying to do their job, investigating a potential sexual abuse. but don't get me wrong, if they fuck this up i'll be as ready to blow them as sky high as the next person.

(edit: why i love bitch magazine)

07.12.2010: if you're running a viral campaign there's a few fundamental concepts you need to know. and apparently you don't. firstly, and this is so obvious it hurts like blunt forks in the eyes, if you have a message (and of course you do), then your message needs to be contained in your viral. it needs to be explicit in the process, or else all your doing is throwing stones at lemmings as they fall off the cliff (because that's what social networking is all about, jumping en masse from on high to your death). the child abuse awareness campaign is a classic example. over half the people i asked didn't even know why they'd changed their icon to a cartoon, they just did it because they saw other people doing it. "i like it not on the internet", and i only found out what that was all about just now. can a campaign get any shitter? (with the bonus of telling people where they can find and steal your purse, genius.) i could have made the effort to investigate it, but when something looks the same as every other dumb trend on facebook, why the fuck should i?

what's worse about these campaigns is that they creates a false sense of action. but what have you achieved? nothing but ripples in the net. it completely betrays the cause. this is something that nearly all internet campaigns are implicitly and avoidably guilty of. we shouldn't need kathleen hannah screaming "get off the internet i'll meet you in the streets", but apparently we do.

it's a little bit like rallying in a coma ward. your target market does not understand you. your target market isn't even a market at all. it's just retweets and peer pressure.

but writing about how you're going to go out and blow shit sky high? that's the win for the big money, because that's when you're fighting on a relevant battle field. that and i like the message too, y'know, blowing stuff up.

on a more important note, a bittorrent based dns system is the best idea i've heard in wikileaks weeks.

and fuck off with your new profile. i didn't like your old one either.

03.12.2010: a couple of things. in the form of rants. because it's friday. and to be frank, fuck you anyway.

now it probably depends on what newspaper/site you read, but all week i've been reading this slurry (my website, i can use words however i want) of media bullshit surrounding wikileaks. we all know what wikileaks is (currently available at, but i need to clarify it - "an international non-profit media organisation that publishes submissions of otherwise unavailable documents from anonymous sources and leaks". if you like democracy (as a concept, but let's not get into that), and you prefer your democracy to be of the transparent and proportional variety, you don't have a single solid arguement that can stand against the existence of wikileaks. it's a tool to complete a process that starts with a source and ends with a journalist. all the pieces are important and wikileaks can only make the world a better place.

what is your problem? apparently some of the leakage is inappropriate, but this largely comes down to how the content from wikileaks is being reported - badly. (i know it's no great revelation that shitty newspapers are shit, but still). this is where the role of the journalist is important, but when in doubt, the public can decide (aka, fuck you).

and fuck all of you diplomats.

then there's the problem of julian assange. but wait, is it a problem it all? i don't give a shit. his personal life, be it raping women or belonging to a cult (wait, does he kill animals too?), has nothing to do with wikileaks. i don't care if he's an asshole, a genius, a terrorist, or fucking jesus. character assassination or not, he is not an issue to be mixed up on the same page as the content of wikileaks, nevermind in the same article. i wouldn't care if it was l ron hubbard or hitler who founded wikileaks, it makes no difference to the concept, the process, or the content.

give me a second to calm down. "i'm not going on wikileaks at work. it might get me in trouble", doesn't help either. when did wikileaks go from winning amnesty international awards to being a website that can get you into trouble for looking at? how did the villains get switched around so fast?

another thing quickly, this bacteria that has been 'found', the one that can use arsenic instead of phosphorus. almsot every single news piece i've read about it suggests (either through bad wording or bad understanding, it's hard to tell for the most) that the discovery is a strain of bacteria that naturally uses arsenic in their DNA. which, like, duh, omg. there is a huge difference between finding the phenomena in nature and finding it in a lab after extensively testing the bacteria, pushing it to accept a new molecule. i'm not saying it's any less amazing, it just seems very widely misunderstood. and to preempt the asshole sitting in the back, it's not playing god - it's playing with nature. high five for evolution.

30.11.2010: my first paycheck is a joke that i can actually laugh at. like, where did all my money just go? swallowed up by the dansk skat maskine to fund the removal of other immigrants from the country? no doubt. i'm only laughing because i don't currently have too big of a cash flow problem. and i'll get the majority of my 55% tax back of course (the majority because i've earnt so little this year), but that wont be until march. or may. or until whichever month beginning with m it takes them to work back through everyone's taxes.

don't let me get in the habit of putting ristrettos in my coffees.

btw, did anyone notice cop16 began yesterday? are we that fucked that we just don't care anymore. we gave up? or maybe it's just denmark. i don't know.

moving swiftly on, i don't like it when people think i blindly stick up for google, but seriously, "preferential placement of Google's own services"? wouldn't you think that the people who made the best search engine in the world would also know how to rank the highest on it? they don't need to manipulate their results. and anyway, google could easily take themselves out of their own results and place links to their other services above the results. you could hardly complain then. it's another joke, come on. the only way you can compete with google is by legally forcing their search engine to be less good? you're just making yourself look stupid.

although not as stupid as MSN when they have such blatant product placement in films. that's just embarrassing.

however i do wonder how it works when google has adwords. do they pay themselves?

27.11.2010: snow snow snow and i'm trying to cycle home from language school. every so often my cogset is coming loose from the rear wheel hub. fucking freewheels. isn't the thread and ratcheting mechanism set so that it self tightens? it fixes itself when i walk with it, like it's some kind of dumb dog. i don't know. my feet are cold and i'm not dressed for walking. and out down the street it looks so christmassy i could just up and kill myself.

so instead i'm putting coconut in my porridge and trying not to think of cranberries. but it's still snowing. we need pineapples and melons falling from the sky. not so slowly and gently.

the day is over by 4pm, but like this it will never go dark, the light bounced between clouded sky and snow covered landscape. everything turned a pale light-pollution purple. it's so pretty what we do.

so i give up. we go to the norwegian christmas market, drink glogg and eat aebleskiver. det er bare saadan.

25.11.2010: i started off ok, but approaching the early morning i just couldn't sleep. how could i, with a mammoth running through my head and two unsolveable rubiks-esque cubes sitting on the shelf? well well well.

nothing a ristretto can't fix

the cubes in question:

back to the skewbing board. the gear cube is the one that's not fully geared. you can see in the picture how it's free to move 90 degrees in one axis. it's horrendeous i tell you. i'm completely lost with it. the megaminx is at least solveable. it's a beast but isn't much harder than a standard rubik's cube. it's kind of like two rubiks cubes merged together in a higher dimension. or one just stretched out. either way i've been reduced to talking crap.

also, xn--zkr is my new faourite website (for today at least). it's brilliant up until the "the swastika has been made famous on 4chan" comment. but it's about time the best logo in the world got its fair dues.

anyway. it's snowing outside and i've just over brewed my morning tea. which i can't really call a morning tea because that suggests some kind of regularity, and there is nothing regular about me drinking in the morning. it fits with the snow though.

24.11.2010: longer than you may have thought. the oitonome dies, in the same moment we're invited to play loppen (one of the coolest venues in christiania) by a band hosting their album release party. nevermind. this shit happens, and hopefully it is always for the best.

but loppen. shit. maybe we can pull off one last final show. i don't know. maybe not.

one thing dies and another is born. the mammoth. a soggy and cold pile of afterbirth matted fur. by the fire. your best rug.

actually this is all ridiculous. the whole mammoth thing is all about death too. on a long enough time scale there is no cycle of life. it's where taoism and nihilism meet and spear you through the gut. it's a seemingly endless struggle followed by the final and ultimate heat death. and the most expensive ivory.

so i'm drinking some whiskey, hammering the guitar. this is the way - snow falling against the window pane and whiskey burning my insides. the mammoth whimpering in the corner. or was it whispering? a little distortion goes a long way. or rather, a lot of distortion goes a long way. i've said that twice now. can you say it enough?

i ran 5km last night. which you'll either find impressive or unimpressive. either way, whatever.

bob to fisk, it sounds good like that.

21.11.2010: last night was the last oitonome gig for a while. this is both a good and a bad thing. we we're playing at the punk rock generation vol.3 CD release party. we we're the first band on (at 8:30pm), but we managed to play a decent show anyway. infact it was probably one of our best. and it's not the crowds fault they were rubbish. they were just too sober and too few. they did sing along to 'copenhagen' though, so i'm all happy.

and the feedback was good too. that always helps. and for the first time probably ever i managed to drink my fair share of band beers. also worthy of note is we managed to finish a full game of band-rules 'one card passing'.

anyway, it's a nice compliation CD. there are 34 bands (i counted around 140 people, all inexcusably male) from all over europe, but mostly scandinavia, germany and the netherlands. it's cool to be on a 'proper' CD (proper in quotes because i just noticed it has no barcode), but we do have one of the worst sounding recordings on there. it's a fucking shame because i know we're better than our recordings. nevermind.

so if you want one let me know.

my neck really aches this morning. i must have, er.. slept on it funny or something.

20.11.2010: i had a theory about why i never want to write anything on here anymore, and of course it's all about facebook..

time was, long before facebook took over as everyone's primary means of communication, i'd have opinions and my own place to stick them. it's not that anyone necessarily paid any attention (i suppose i preferred it when they didn't), but it was my own unique space. this was when social networks were only full of girls taking tacky photos of themselves. there was nothing like these centralized social hubs that we have today, filled with hundreds of people already talking repulsive shit about the same thing i wanted to write about. what's the point of me trying to say anything when facebook has already collectively deconstructed whatever it was i had in mind?

it just puts me off. it isn't something i want to be a part of. the landscape has changed. and whilst it wasn't exactly pretty before, now it's grotesque. everyone has a voice, each as meaningless as the next, and it doesn't seem to go anywhere.

this is also why i don't like twitter. it's not the voice of most reason that always gets the attention, but the fastest and snappiest.

i'm just being negative today. ignore me. i'm talking rubbish.

12.11.2010: i wish i'd taken a photograph of our dinner. we've got so very good at collaborative cooking, especially when it comes to lasagne. six layers of joy (or seven, depending on what you count as a layer). our best lasagne ever, so much so that it 100% warrants writing shit about it on the internet like i'm a total asshole. all i can say is that if you're thinking about investing in the means for making your own pasta i can't encourage you enough. please.

for dessert we had a very posh selection of six cheeses (rescued from work, before they reached the trash at the end of the week) and even posher cupcakes from the agnes cupcake bakery. it's called a treat. i'm allowed these now. even if they're very much non-vegan (a little bit like me).

this was all followed by beers at punks undead and the pirate band. i want to be a pirate acordian player too. that would be awesome.

oh, btw that reminds me.. oi tonight at paramount!

and in the meantime you could listen to grilly's best mix yet. and i'm not saying that because he included one of our songs.

also the music in supercratebox is brilliant.

12.11.2010: ok. so that's my first week at work finished. i'm very happy. and i'm very optimistic. this is good. you can all finally be happy for me. actually happy, as opposed to when i was offered the job but hadn't started it yet. there's been no crying in the stairwell. whatever that means, we're all good.

my office is a strange and intriguing building right in the middle of the city. it's perfect. it's a maze of small steps and low doorways, a tall person's nightmare. our kitchen window looks down into a juice bar and a clothes shop. and i can see into two of the operating rooms of the 'beauty' clinic across the road from my desk (apparently the flashing red light signifies something, but i'm not sure what yet).

most of my week has been spent setting up my computer and learning the ropes (in this case they're more like strings, but nevermind). i can program with beauty and elegance, but that's not what a professional programmer does. they program how things have to be programmed. but it's fun learning new and weird ways of doing things.

homesite is my new textpad.

and luckily i have the nearest desk to the toilet. which is just perfect for me, since i probably piss twice as much as everyone else in the office. all that coffee and juice, y'know.

apparently a single quote is called a ping.

now i'm just writing random things into my draft folder. like how i have two 21.5" monitors. that's over a meter of screen. well, it would be if they were corner to corner.

and how if microsoft can program a shiny blue spinning donut to appear every time a process is choking, i don't see why they can't transform the mouse into simple game of space invaders or pacman instead.

anyway. that's a small taste of what i'm doing. i mean, it's not. but it's what you're getting.

11.11.2010: today i'm mostly trying to not react to all the infuriating shit on facebook. the amount of comments i've not sent - it hurts. the combination of facebook and rememberance day (unfortunately two negatives don't always make a positive) has made it apparent how many of my old school 'friends' have turned out racist. should i be surprised?

it annoys me because i was determined to not make any rememberance day related comments. i've never felt comfortable with it, but i also appreciate what it means and all that blah blah fucking blah. i'll just get myself in trouble. perhaps to save any misunderstanding (this is my disclaimer), i should point you towards chris t-t's two posts, which sum up my own convoluted opinions far better than i can myself.

but. if you're going to use rememberance day as an reason/excuse to either glorify or support the military after the second war world (aka, i don't give if a shit if you die whilst fighting wars i disagree with) or discuss immigration and foreign policy, you can fuck right off.

what did your brave soldiers die for? so you could vote for the BNP and have a convicted holocaust denier run your country? wouldn't it have been easier to just let the nazis win in the first place?

07.11.2010: i guess i don't really update very often anymore. i guess no one really cares.

i spent most of last week gearing up to start work tomorrow. even writing that sounds weird. i was trying to wrap up some projects with varying success. after five months i finally finished going through my photos from america, but i haven't quite managed to upload them to my site. i recorded the intro for the long awaited project hindenburg ep (awaited by whom?), but got no futher. you can actually listen to that though, it's sitting right here.

i just have to say that herb morrison, the guy doing the radio broadcast, is one of my all time favourite heroes. he even has the perfect last name for it too. and his recording is one of the greatest pieces of audio ever. i almost feel bad for ruining it with layer upon layer of overdubbed guitar, but nevermind.

and the other week i actually found the 1975 hindenburg movie on DVD in fakta for 25kr. i didn't even know it existed, except i have vague recollections of seeing it when i was younger.

and i've been listening to a lot of belly. that's a weird sentence if you didn't know that belly is a band. i miss them in a nostalgic way very unlike how i miss sleater kinney. it's almost as if we still have sleater kinney, but belly is completely lost to us now, too rooted in our teenage years. blah blah blah.

something else about craving vinegar and how norrebro smells best in the rain, streets so slick they could give the fonze a run for his money. it's the smell of culture beyond just meat and potatoes.

01.11.2010: our apartment is like a youth hostel right now. i've totally lost track of who's staying here. but it's nice, y'know.

i just realised i have to pay full (er, adult?) price at the student house now. from free to 15kr for a coffee. why would i hang there when i can hang at cafe retro? and then i realised i wont be hanging anywhere anymore - i'll be working.

i had a contract swapping meeting at 9:30 this morning. returned home to hang out with all our guests. then went into town for the kind of shopping where no one has any money so no one buys anything. i handed my key back into fisk. no more day shifts for me. by the time i was home i was exhausted and desperate for dinner, only it wasn't even 4pm yet. i've totally forgotten what an eight hour days feels like.

random things. more rubik's cubes. we watched the kick-ass movie and loved it. you will too. there's nothing better than watching an eleven year old girl butcher a mob of new york gangsters. tarantino was never this violent. or funny. and he never swore so much either.

shopping for new trousers. playing bass in a reggae/ska/soul band. eating soup. it was a good sunday.

were not wasting paper [or grammar]
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