Thursday, September 30, 2010

Books I've read in 2010 - September

Lady Susan, The Watsons and Sanditon by Jane Austen - AUDIO
The Haunted Doll's House by Stevenson/James (a Penguin 60)
The Catcher in the Rye by JD Salinger
Gutten som hadde svar på alt by Vikas Swarup - AUDIO
Battle royale by Koushun Takami
Turtles and Tortoises by Bartlett/Bartlett
Ondskapens hjerte by Chelsea Cain - AUDIO
Ridende rytter til hest by Per Egil Hegge
Sinnets mørke by Jason Moss
Gentlemen of the Road by Michael Chabon
Peter Pan by JM Barrie
Drømmenes land by Vidar Sundstøl - AUDIO
Kameleonens skygge by Minette Walters - AUDIO
The Prince of Fire by Gorup/Obradovic, eds.
The Harmony Silk Factory by Tash Aw - AUDIO
Världens bästa by by Arto Paasilinna
Lakse-enka by Ingrid Bjørnov - AUDIO

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

A question

What exactly is a 'wart factory'?

I'm only asking because Thomas Thiis-Evensen apparently thinks that Karl Johan Street* looks like one. Oh, I'm sorry, only parts of it. Which parts, I wonder? Where does the wart factory begin, where does it end?

All these questions ...

*Oslo's main street, named after King Carl XIV Johan of Sweden and Norway (1818-44, the 'bedchamber regime' ... he was a total hypochondriac.)

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

NORWAY 1960 - Voi voi

The first year we competed in the ESC was 1960, which marked the contest's fifth anniversary. We did pretty well, ending up in 4th place. Sure, there were only 13 competing countries, but still. We beat Sweden, they came 10th. Of course this was the most important thing - they got a head start on us, they competed for the first time in -58, but we still managed to beat them on our first try. Tee-hee. Pretty solidly, too. That's what we like to see. :-)

Anyway ... our performer that year was the fantastic Nora Brockstedt, who, no kidding, is still going strong to this day, literally half a century later. She is AFAIK the oldest living recording artist in the world. o_O She rocks. :-) The song is about a Sami girl looking forward to seeing her sweetheart on Saturday night, and Brockstedt was dressed in something that was supposed to look like traditional Sami clothes. Oy vey, voi voi ...

This is Nora Brockstedt performing Voi voi by Georg Elgaaen. He competed in the Royal Festival Hall in London, England on Saturday, March 25th, 1960.

Lyrics with translation here.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Points for creativity

As I've mentioned before, I'm not a big fan of the Sad Keanu meme - I think it's barking up the wrong tree, so to speak, in a number of ways. But this one is actually pretty good. I like this one. :-) Click to enlarge.
Just in case you've seen the series of photos that these are taken from: they don't show Keanu being totally depressed and pining for better things, cupcakes or otherwise - they're from a movie he's shooting, Generation Um. So there. :-)

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Videos from Ireland, yay!

I'm finally getting around to uploading my videos from Ireland to my Youtube channel. Four down, 22 to go. o_O The first two were pretty dull, just scenery from the plane. But now I'm getting to the good stuff. :-) These two are from my first day in Ireland. We immediately set off on adventures. :-)

This is from Knowth and Newgrange, an amazing place ... especially the latter. Wow. A tourist destination for 300 years. :-) Five thousand year old grave mounds, with the world's biggest collection, if that's the word I want, of megalithic art.

This is another such grave - a passage grave called Fourknocks - AFAIK a little more recent, maybe no more than 4500 years. :-D It's a lot smaller than either Knowth and Newgrange - a lot - but in some ways it's more special because you can go inside it, which you can't at Knowth, and it's beautifully decorated, much more so than Newgrange, where you can enter the tomb. But you can't use a camera in there, they don't allow it. Does this make sense? :-)

Here's the video I made, anyway. Ancient grave sites and pretty horses. What's not to like? :-)

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Quote of the Week

Faith is often the boast of the man who is too lazy to investigate.
F. M. Knowles

Friday, September 24, 2010

Operatic art

Did you know that the chandelier in the opera house in Oslo weighs 8.5 metric tons ... ? :-o

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Show Your Consideration

I haven't seen anywhere near all the episodes of Curb Your Enthusiasm, and here's something that I've missed. Brilliant. Reminds me of that scene on Seinfeld where Jerry talks to a phone sales guy and asks for his phone number so he can call him back later. Hey, recycling is good. Upcycling, even, in this case. :-D

Fullscreen here.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Do you want to see ...

... the Dunning-Kruger effect in action before your very eyes? Well, the wingnut in question has been blocked from commenting now, so it's not exactly happening any more, but you can read the discussion as far as it went, here. I'm sorry, 'discussion'. It's amazing. I don't understand how someone with such a poorly functioning brain can manage on their own in society. It's scary how religion damages the mind. Not that this guy would ever have been much good, but seriously ... he's completely ruined. Sad. But hey, at least he can comfort himself with the fact that he is an 'apostle'. :-D

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Superfantastic Postcrossing card

I got this amazing postcard from a Postcrosser in Germany last week - check it out:

She wrote that she picked it for me because I love turtles and I like to travel. :-D

Ooh, and happy birthday to Findabair!! Congratulations on finishing your thesis while you were still 28. ;-)

Monday, September 20, 2010

'Keanu Reeves' by Jonny Kock

So, the other day I was browsing around Platekompaniet's online store, looking for ... well, something ESC-related. Totally by accident *cough* I came across something really weird - a song by a Swedish singer I'd never even heard about, Jonny Kock. A total unknown to me. And, it would seem, to most people. But that's neither here nor there. The song, strangely, was called Keanu Reeves. I know, right? I just had to buy it. It's from an album, apparently, but they don't make you buy the whole thing ... that's something I really like about that store, in their mp3 section they sell both whole albums and single songs. That's maybe totally common, I don't know, I don't buy a lot of music online. :-) But I like it, anyway. It was a very good thing in this case, because having listened to this one song, I definitely wouldn't want the album. ;-)

Anyway ... I was hoping it might be a good song, but it's not, it's just some whiny emo thing. Alas. I had to share it with the world, though, so I made a video. Remember I said I figured out how to make videos from still photos? Yay me. :-) I knew just the picture that would go great with this song, with just a little addition. Yay for the lolcat builder over at ICHC, too. ;-)

In the unlikely event that Jonny Kock should see this, no offense. It's nothing personal.

Widescreen here ... and also my translation of the lyrics. There's one word I don't get - I hear it, but I don't understand it in that context. The last word of the first sentence in the second verse. Anyone?

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Ballet, anyone?

No, you're right, ballet is totally not my thing. I am not a ballet kind of girl. :-) But I still have a piece of ballet to share today ... I was at Oslo Book Festival all day yesterday and at one of the events I went to - this was at the Opera - they showed a part of a new ballet they will be debuting next weekend. World premiere. It's by Jo Strømgren who is one of the most famous Norwegian dancers and choreographers. Not that he has a lot of competition, but still. :-) The ballerina here is Maiko Nishino, she is the prima ballerina of the Norwegian National Ballet, so it was kind of a treat, I suppose, to get to see her dance without paying through the nose for it. I don't really get it, but even I can tell that they're really good at what they're doing.

The ballet is inspired by Antonio Vivaldi's The Four Seasons, so obviously that's where the music is from.

Fullscreen here.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Quote of the Week

Success is getting what you want, happiness is wanting what you get.
Ingrid Bergman

Seemed appropriate in light of the parliamentary election in Sweden tomorrow. I predict that the incumbent government will most likely stay in power. Don't be too impressed if I get it right, though. :-)

Friday, September 17, 2010


I learned something new today - I figured out how to make videos from still images. I think. And I'm sick too so my brain's not working properly, and I still managed to work it out. Yay. :-)

To celebrate, a photo showing how today's young people are stupid fucking idiots.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Bugs ...

I've got lots more things I want to rant about, but after the past two days' worth of text it's probably time to break it up with something lighter. Rather convenient as I hardly have the energy to type ... I'm sick and feel like shit, a head cold with a fever that I thought I only had on Tuesday, but now I'm suspecting it may have come back ... so argh. I don't know how I managed to write all that stuff yesterday and Tuesday. :-) Tonight I've been feeling totally out of it, zero energy. So here's a pointless video for your enjoyment.

I posted some pictures of insects last month, you may recall ... this video is about the same thing. It's a wasp I met in the woods this summer. I wanted to check out how well the macro function on my camera would work on the video setting. Pretty well, as it turned out. :-)

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Oh, the ignorance ... !!

Just have to rant a little bit about some blatant ignorance on display on prime time television tonight. But first, ignorance in a local paper. Tanumine found this article in the paper edition and saved it for me. :-)

As I've posted about before, it's the Food Authority that is the be all and end all when it comes to reptiles in this country. They are responsible for enacting the ban on reptiles in private ownership. Since what they do means literally life or death for the animals that end up with them, it would have been nice to know that they had the basic knowledge in place, at least. But no. The FA representative in this article is actually quoted as saying that because land turtles (tortoises) are the only type of reptile that they give dispensations for, if we get an aquatic turtle handed in, then we know that it's been illegally imported. ARGH! NO, you don't know that!! This would probably come as a shock to a lot of FA employees - and not only to them - but enough reptiles are bred in this country to pretty much fully cover the domestic market. Yes, some reptiles are imported as well, because people sometimes want something they can't get here. (Which is probably due to the ban, yeah.) But the supply of lizards, snakes and turtles that is bred in this country is sufficient to cover the demand. So no, you don't know that they've been imported illegally. This species, Trachemys scripta elegans, is easy to breed - they're the rats of the reptile world (yes, it is Raphael's species :-) - and I think I can pretty much guarantee you that this particular specimen was bred and hatched in good old Norway, birthplace of giants.

This article is kind of sad. Could have been worse on the scaremongering front, but could have been so much better on the actual facts front. >:-(

But back to the TV show. The new season of Dyrlegene ('The Vets') on TV2. Trude Mostue is on it, blech. She's not doing any veterinary work, though - she's just the host, like any random stupid TV personality chick. Way to waste an expensive education. In tonight's episode, someone had dumped five turtles (again, T.s. elegans, or RES - red eared slider) that they apparently no longer wanted to keep, in the turtle pond at the garden center Plantasjen in Asker. They had eight RES and suddenly there were thirteen, and the new arrivals didn't seem quite healthy. So, call in the vet. In all likelihood a vet with no real knowledge of reptiles, alas. (See the comments of the earlier post I linked to above if you need an explanation.)

This vet showed her ignorance by saying several things that were pretty much ... just ... wrong. First she says that the turtles are slimy, and that this is a bad sign. Hello, they're slimy because the water is filthy! Indeed, when the pond had been emptied out and cleaned and given a full water change, the turtles that were left were not slimy. Gee, I wonder if there's a connection. She said that both their shells and their skin was slimy - if the latter is true, then that may be bad, it may be a fungal infection. I didn't get a chance to see, there weren't any good closeups. I couldn't see any sign of it, as far as that goes. But 'sliminess' isn't an objective quality. I hope there aren't any ignorant or relatively ignorant turtle owners out there who saw this show and are now thinking Oh no, my turtle is slimy too, it must be sick! No, that is absolutely not necessarily true.

What else? She said that they had algae on their shells and that that is bad. Well, they had hardly any that I could see, and algae is not bad. It's not in itself a problem. It can only be a problem if the shell is covered to such an extent that it hinders vitamin D uptake during basking. But for that to happen, it has to be a really extreme case ... like this guy. :-D Just a few bits of green, that's absolutely not a problem. Don't worry if your turtle has a little algae. :-)

She claimed that four of the turtles were so ill that they had to be put down. So, a sad ending. I personally, from what I could see from the TV footage, would have kept the animals for observation for quite a while before passing a death sentence on them. They did not seem at all that sick to me. And I wonder what kind of experience she has that allows her to say this, all things considered. In fact, I question her experience.

Most especially when she said this final thing - that something else she was worried about was salmonella. Because turtles often have salmonella and then, if they do, that's a disease in these animals, and they can end up infecting humans. Bah, humbug!! How on earth can a veterinary professional say something like that?? No, turtles carrying salmonella do not have a disease. The key word is carrying. They are carriers of the bacterium, but it doesn't make them ill. This is exactly why reptile keepers need to be so careful about hygiene - you can't tell if your turtle or other reptile has salmonella in its body, because they don't show any symptoms, because they don't have a disease - they're just carriers.

You see, miss doctor lady, salmonella isn't a disease, it's just a germ. Salmonellosis is the disease.

It's one thing that laypeople mix these terms up, we don't know any better. But when medical personnel do so on prime time TV, that's another matter.

This is what happens when authorities issue blanket bans without scientific foundation. The result is one big mess. >:-(

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Sent out to nothing - and?

I've been thinking about these forced returns of asylum seekers that have happened in the past few days, and I feel like writing down some of these probably not very profound thoughts. Be warned: I'm not very sympathetic towards the plight of these people.

Background: Kosovar Serbians have lived in Norway for a few years, have applied for asylum and had their applications denied, have refused to return voluntarily and have now been forcibly thrown out. I do agree that maybe having the cops turn up in people's homes in the middle of the night is rather extreme ... but it is also true what the Justice Department (from now on JD) says - that if people know the cops are coming, they may hide away, and that can't be allowed to be an option. So.

First of all, I have to say that I'm having a really hard time accepting the claims the returnees are making that this was such a tremendous horrible shock. How can it be a surprise, let alone a shock? They have applied for asylum, their applications have been denied - they have appealed this decision, the appeal has been denied - they have been instructed to return home - they have refused to do so - what the hell did they think would happen? That the JD would just say Oh, OK, since you don't want to leave we'll just let you stay? Obviously that is not an option. The way in which it happened might have been a shock, but the fact that they are now being forcibly returned can't possibly come as a surprise to anyone who's been paying attention. I don't accept that.

Second, I do understand that it's traumatic for the children to have to go through something like this. However, I think the way the parents handle it is probably the determining factor. Kids are resilient. And it's also, unfortunately, the kind of situation where something's gotta give. Yes, it's sad for the children, tragic, whatever. But we cannot under any circumstance and for any reason accept anchor babies. That's just the bottom line that we cannot deviate from. Because the fact of the matter is that everyone can't come to Norway. We're a small nation with limited resources (the Petroleum Fund is a collection of numbers, don't start with that richest country in the world shit) and we cannot help everyone. Anchor babies cannot be accepted and we just have to deal with that as best we can.

Third, it's been said that these people are being 'sent back with nothing'. Yees ... but whose fault is that? Isn't the practice that if you return voluntarily, the JD gives you a certain sum of money, I'm not sure how much, but a sum intended for you to take with you to help you land on your feet, so to speak, when you get back to wherever you came from. However, if you refuse to go, and you're then forcibly returned (which you are supposed to be), you lose the right to this money. So by refusing to return, they put themselves in the situation that when they were returned, they would get nothing. Like I said, my sympathy is limited.

Fourth, the personal trauma that is so unbearable here. I do understand that it's a bad situation for those involved ... (to the point that I can understand it when I've never experienced such a thing myself) and I understand the local people who don't understand why 'these law-abiding taxpayers have to go when criminals get to stay'. I understand that emotional reaction ... but it is an emotional reaction, which the law cannot take into account. (Plus, now we're sending the criminals out too, so the argument loses at least one leg.) The mayor of Vadsø has been on the news saying that it's such a loss for their community ... and I do understand that, it's a small place and probably not that easy to get people to move there. But this is not a matter for the law or for the JD. And in any case, how impossibly traumatic is it really? I'm having a hard time with the arguments being used here. It's so horrible to have to go to Serbia, because they don't belong there, it's not where they're from, they'll be strangers there, they don't know anybody, they don't have anything there, etc. But wasn't all this true when they came to Norway, too? Yet they are so happy here that they can't bear to leave ... even if everything they say about Serbia now was true about Norway then. The one family that has been in the news the most have a little boy, I think he's five, who now will be damaged for life by this experience, apparently. But they have an older boy also, who was similarly little when they were uprooted from Kosovo, and the mother herself has been on TV saying how well he's doing and how well-adjusted he is. So, again, how is this different between displacement #1 and displacement #2? Where does the difference lie?

If I was going to be mean, I would say that the only difference I can discern is in how much financial support Norway is able to offer new arrivals in comparison with Serbia. But, like I said, that's if I was going to be mean.

Fifth, and last, what this all boils down to is the simple fact that the term asylum actually has a specific meaning. And it doesn't mean that if your life is difficult you have the right to start over someplace else. What it means is that if you are being persecuted you may have the right to protection. (Note that this doesn't apply if you're being 'persecuted' by the police for actual crimes you have committed.) If you are not a victim of unfair persecution, you don't have the right to claim asylum. So it's pointless to apply for it if you don't have the grounds to do so ... and it's beyond pointless to be aggravated when your groundless application is denied. Accepting such groundless applications can and will do serious damage to the entire institution of asylum ... not to mention to the situations of those who really truly need the protection that that institution offers.

Poverty is sad, but it doesn't equate to persecution.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Keanu @ TIFF

Toronto's supposed to be nice this time of year, isn't it? OK, maybe not. But they've got their film festival going on now and of course Keanu's there. He's promoting Henry's Crime - it doesn't have a distributor yet, so that's what they're working on now - but he would almost certainly be there anyway, he's usually in town for the TIFF. It's his home town, he's showing support. Hm, that gives me a crazy idea ...

Champagne, anyone?

Sunday, September 12, 2010

More Liberace

Aw, I just can't get over it. My dream will never come true. Unless they manage to find some new location ... but I have no idea how likely that is. Maybe not very. :-( Aww. Enjoy his brilliant piano skills, anyway.

Moon River. Not my favorite recording that he did of this piece, but it'll do. :-)

Rhapsody In Blue. I love the jacket he's wearing. I'm pretty sure this is from Sincerely Yours.

A Spanish medley ... you've got to see this to believe it. The video is not speeded up at any point. :-)

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Quote of the Week

I had to dare a little bit. Who am I kidding - I had to dare a lot. Don't wear one ring, wear five or six. People ask how I can play with all those rings, and I reply, "Very well, thank you."

I am sad ... !! I just heard on Twitter that the Liberace Museum in Las Vegas is closing. Bwaah ... !! From October 17th I will have one less reason to visit the US. I've never been there, and I haven't particularly wanted to go, but if I ever do then I have a short list of things I want to see. I want to go to Roanoke, Virginia to meet my friend Vickie who lives there; I want to see San Francisco; I want to go to Memphis and visit Graceland; and I wanted to go to Las Vegas to see the Liberace Museum. But alas, it is not to be. I am sad. :-(

Tanumine (my best friend, previously known here as C., but now registered on :-) - you have been there and I envy you so much right now ... !! :-(

Yes, I am a Liberace fan. You wanna make something of it?? If you're not, it's your loss.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Aasmund Nordstoga Band live at Rudi farm

I promised someone that I would post some performances of traditional Norwegian music here ... parts of a concert I saw this summer, at Rudi farm in south Fron in Gudbrandsdalen. It used to be a working farm but now focuses on culture ... the owner, farmer, whatever (he still keeps a few goats, I think) runs an art gallery on the farm, there's a restaurant, and the barn has been converted to a concert venue. It's really cool ... a beautiful place, and with amazing views of the beautiful valley. My mother wanted us to go see Aasmund Nordstoga perform with his band ... her cousin and his wife were going and they told us about it, and my mother immediately decided that we must all go too. :-) I'm glad she did, it was a really good concert. I want to get some of his CDs now. :-)

Anyway ... I recorded some of the show and ended up with three videos. Here they all are. Follow the links below the videos to get a little more info on what's in each one. Don't miss the third one, Nordstoga performs Ved Rondane with all four verses and hardly any music. Beautiful.

Fullscreen and more info here.

Fullscreen and more info here.

Fullscreen and more info here.

Is it just me or is the video quality kind of fucked up ... ? o_O Well, as long as the audio's good, that's the important thing with these, I guess. :-)

Good news for some: These were the last of the videos I made from my mountain vacation this year, so now I'm all set to upload all my Ireland videos! Count 'em - 26. :-o I have some issues. But I hope there'll be something worth watching. :-)

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

I missed something

But fortunately I watched the Daily Review tonight, so I got my dose of annoyance and outrage today too. Oh, good.

Am I not paying attention or has this been snuck in under the radar - the new regulations stipulating that all new apartments (presumably also houses, but the topic of the news report was apartments) must now be constructed so as to accommodate wheelchair users? Like, totally regardless of whether any wheelchair user is going to actually ever live there? A guy from OBOS was interviewed and he showed some blueprints and whatnot from the new buildings they're putting up at Ensjø ... the smallest apartments there apparently cost 1.5 million, now with these new regulations that they have to follow, they would have gotten so much bigger that they would have cost 2.1 million. Because as-is they are too small for the wheelchair (which has to be able to be turned around fully in every room! wtf!) so under the new regulations these small 'starter apartments' will have to be constructed larger. Whether or not it's necessary. o_O

These regulations apparently took effect as of July 1st. Have I been sleepwalking or has anyone else missed this as well? I have to say that I think it's crazy. Yes, of course, there must be a number of 'wheelchair-friendly' homes available. But not every single one! To paraphrase Jack Nicholson, we're not all in wheelchairs, baby. The building industry has tried to get the new regs made more lenient, ie, with room for exceptions, but no such luck. Apparently this has not even been considered ... which, if true, is nuts, IMO. But then again, this info came from Liv Signe Navarsete, who was interviewed, and I'm really not sure how trustworthy she can be considered anymore. She came off like an idiot, I have to say. She said that ... let's see if I remember it correctly ... that now we're in 2010 and it really is only reasonable to expect that everywhere in our society should be accessible to everyone. Say what??

No, everywhere does not need to be accessible to everyone! Like for instance, my home. Precisely because it is a private home and not a public place. My apartment is not wheelchair accessible (second story walkup) but that is not a problem for wheelchair users - it is only a problem for me when it comes time to sell the place, if & when that happens ... because I will then have a smaller pool of potential buyers. But seriously, how much smaller? Again, we're not all wheelchair users. They are a rather small minority and will likely always be just that. And 'everywhere' will never be accessible to them. They can't walk, deal with it. Being disabled makes your life more difficult ... that's why it's called disabled. Yes, of course they should also be able to get apartments where they can live comfortably. But why make EVERY apartment bigger just so they can live in a few of them? Let's say someone wants to build a highrise (or what passes for a highrise in this country). Why not have them make some of the apartments in that building wheelchair accessible, and the rest as usual? Is there really a huge interest among wheelchair users for 12th floor apartments? Wouldn't they prefer, maybe, ground floor, first and second? Then make smaller and cheaper apartments in the higher floors, so that young people with normally functioning bodies and normal wages can afford to get into the housing market at some point?

I am a little shocked that I missed this when it happened. Was it not discussed? I don't remember hearing anything about this at all. Which maybe is the best thing, overall, for my blood pressure. o_O

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

The irony, it burns ... !!

Sometimes you just have to see it to believe it.

WTF is wrong with people??! This was taken at Tanum in Byporten mall yesterday. Please note which book has accidentally (??) been placed above and slightly to the right of the sign. It's almost too good to be true.

Hands up who thinks I should email this to Per Egil Hegge. :-D

Monday, September 6, 2010

'Henry's Crime'

First live footage was released from Henry's Crime last week. I am so psyched about this movie. Here's hoping it'll actually be in theatres here.

Henry's Crime - Clip
Uploaded by ThePlaylist. - Check out other Film & TV videos.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Airport security is BS

Yeah, I know, that's hardly news. But I had the ultimate proof when I went to Hammerfest last week. Get this.

So, I check in one item of luggage, and then of course I have one item to take on the plane with me. This is always the same, a bag that is made to the exact measurements of cabin luggage, so that I know I will never have any problems getting it on board the plane. When I travel anywhere it's usually stuffed full, and it was this time too. At Gardermoen I dump it in the security check and assume I'll have no problems, and then I go through the metal detector. Then when I go to get my bag, there's a security guard there who asks is this my bag. Yeah, sure. OK, can I please step over this way. Umm, sure, I guess. I go over to where she's standing with my bag, and she starts asking all the usual questions, did I pack it myself, etc. (What do they think people are going to answer? No, my neighbor Mohammed packed it for me?) Then she asks whether I have any liquids in the bag. No, because I'm not mentally challenged. (Which of course I didn't say, I just said no. Alas.) I have two bananas, but they're not quite liquid yet, I hope. She says OK, but it looks on the x-ray like there is something liquid there. Sure, whatever, but there's no liquid in the bag. She says OK, but that's what it looks like, so can you please open the bag and let me take a look. Well, I don't have any contraband, so of course I open up and let her check out what they figure is liquid in there. Guess what it turns out to be.

Biscuits. Seriously. These people looked at a package of Bixit oat biscuits and thought it was a bottle of water. If I'd had a bomb in there, I don't know what they would have managed to confuse that with. o_O

Current standards of airport security are BS. The authorities want to look like they're doing something, but in actual fact it's all appearances. And we all put up with it. Sheesh.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Quote of the Week

The objections to religion are of two sorts - intellectual and moral. The intellectual objection is that there is no reason to suppose any religion true; the moral objection is that religious precepts date from a time when men were more cruel than they are and therefore tend to perpetuate inhumanities which the moral conscience of the age would otherwise outgrow.
Bertrand Russell

Q.E.D. Widescreen here.

Friday, September 3, 2010

The yellow follower stole my monastery

If you don't understand what that means, you need to start playing Carcassonne ... ! :-)

Anne Ida played yellow and she stole my perfect monastery spot. Augh ... !

But I recouped it later though, twice over. (I played green.)

Check out the Pig of Fortune ;-) in the background. How cute is that. :-)

Thursday, September 2, 2010

46 may seem old ...

... but when you have such amazing genes that you hardly change from 29 to 44, what's another couple of years? :-)

Happy 46th to Keanu! I hope he's having a good day ... not like when he turned 39. I hope his friends & family will give him some good books as presents. :-)

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Lom in Gudbrandsdalen

A couple of videos from my summer vacation in the mountains this year ... almost done uploading these now, just some music left and then I'll move on to videos from Ireland. :-) These two are from the snug little place called Lom in Gudbrandsdalen in central Norway. The pretty valley, compared to the dark and dreary East Valley where my mother is from. :-D The first one is various footage from around the place, including the beautiful Lom stave church ... the second is from the Norwegian Mountain Museum, a place well worth the visit if you're ever in the area. (Yeah, their woolly mammoth is just a doll. It's still pretty cool. :-)

One of my regular commenters over on Youtube said about the museum video that he was so surprised that I was allowed to film inside the place. He's an American and he said that he didn't think that would be allowed in any museum in the US that he knows of. o_O Is it really that weird, foreigners? It's mostly allowed in this country. o_O

You can see the first video in full screen here and the second here.