Wednesday, August 31, 2005


A whole city gone, just like that, and a few smaller towns. They can't even make any sensible death tolls yet, because the catastrophe is still in progress and they have to look for live people.

Yeserday it did not yet seem quite as bad, but today everything looks horrible. It's somehow even more horrible that there is not a lot of pictures since pretty much nobody can get in.

Will there be a New Orleans after that? Note to self: visit all places you want as soon as you can, you never know if they will still be there when you get around to it.

How are they gonna get the water out of there?

Bless their mayor for ordering the mandatory evacuation.

Monday, August 29, 2005

News of the peaceful

Hamas released a Mohammed Deif videotape, where he promises to continue struggle until the state of Israel is erased from the map. Mohammed Deif is a fairly high-profile Hamas terrorist who has masterminded a lot of suicide bombings but somehow never managed to go to paradise himself; I am sure Israeli security forces will correct that oversight eventually.

After the Gaza pullout a number of representatives of the local terrorist organizations have vowed to continue armed struggle until Israel has pulled out of all of their lands, which in their opinion include Israel. One of them even went as far as to point out that their lands in his opinion also include Andalusia. Since Israel is not currently occupying Andalusia, Spanish government please take notice.

Since Israeli settlers have been removed from Gaza the Palestinian gestures of goodwill included a few rockets, stabbing a British tourist in Jerusalem and blowing up a bus station in Beersheva. Abbas condemned the bus station attack in stronger language than usual, which is nice.

Abu Sayyaf blew up a ferry in the Philippines, apparently in hope that Philippinos would pull out and stop occupying Philippines or something like that.

The weekend: doing nothing much

Killeri came over on Friday, and we had a good time. Had a beer with Suvi after that in Angle, which was fun too.

Mostly vegetated all weekend and did not do anything much. Watched a lot of DVD's, probably more than during all this summer. Modesty Blaise was somehow boring - must be one of those movies that do not survive the test of time. Shallow Grave was excellent as always - I love that movie. The Heroic Trio was very good too.

Heli came over yesterday, and we had some wine, and then she went to a movie. I was supposed to go to the movie too, but it was sold out. It's the newest Von Trier, so I suppose it will be in the regular theaters fairly soon.

It was raining like hell yesterday.

On Saturday went to check out the Eesti Herkut store on Kolmas Linja. They had very good wild boar sausage, nice herring (although the old guy in Hakaniemen halli has better one) and sour cream that was very sour indeed (in a good way).

Found a new Chinese store on Kolmas Linja too. Selection and prices much similar to Vi Voan.

Oy vey (or should it be oil vey?)

Oil has hit $70 a barrell. Temporary, of course, in view of the hurricane, but still doesn't look good. I think "oil has reached the record high" has become a sort of permanent news by now.

A huge hurricane is about to hit New Orleans 5 hours from now, and almost the whole city has been evacuated. Hope the hurricane does not fuck it up too much.

Friday, August 26, 2005

Standard fucking deviation

Google News finds 33 articles on the Irwing and Lynn's finding that men are on average 5 IQ test points more intelligent than women, and none of those 33 mention the standard deviation of that IQ test.

(Yes, this Lynn is the Lynn of the Lynn&Vanhanen fame in case you were wondering, but that is not the point.)

When I am the Queen of the World (don't hold your breath) I will order every journalist who writes about IQ points without mentioning the standard deviation of the IQ test publicly whipped. The whipping won't be painful but they will also have to attach the picture of their naked ass with a whip to all their writings for 6 months afterwards and will have to explain publicly what a standard deviation is.

All the journalists who can't tell the difference between mean and median and still insist on writing about either of them, however, will be whipped in a very painful way and banned from publishing anywhere at all, including public bathroom walls.

Down with fundamentalist preachers!

Uk has finally decided on rules for deporting foreigners who incite to murder and preach terrorism. Just about 20 years past the time, too, but better late than never. Now they just have to decide what to do with the ones who are citizens and cannot be deported, but I am sure the new laws for that are forthcoming too.

The move was greatly condemned by many human rights organizations, especially the ones in whose opinion making any link between terrorism and the most peaceful religion is a violation of human rights, and punishing apostasy by death is not.

I think we need laws like that in the US too. It would help us get rid of fundamentalist imams, and with any luck also of Pat Robertson.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Niyazov is having fun again

The President-for-Life (his official title, which does not mean "president against abortion" but "president who is not supposed to be replaced during his lifetime") of Turkmenistan Saparmurat Niyazov is at it again. This time he banned all recorded music, or at least all use thereof at public events and private parties (listening to it home by oneself still might be legal for all I know).

Niyazov is a dictator with a major case of personality cult and a Little Red Book of his own, called Ruhnama. His other projects since I last mentioned him in my blog last year involve trying to build a giant ice palace in the desert, closing all rural libraries on account that "rural people can't read anyway", closing all rural hospitals (apparently rural people don't get sick, either), firing 15000 medical workers and replacing them with army conscripts.

Colonoscopy with a cannon pipe, anyone?

Pants crisis

An attempt to exampine the contents of the wardrobe revealed 3 pairs of intact jeans, 2 pairs of jeans that are falling apart and 6 pairs of jeans that have already fallen apart, in addition to the countless number of jeans that are either too small or, surprisingly, too big.

Shit. I thought I had more. More intact ones, I mean.

There are also several pairs of pants that are not jeans, but mysteriously all but one of them make my ass itch.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

People who wish for the world to end

I often run into people who are predicting the end of the world and/or Western Civilization in one way or another. A lot of them sound concerned, but some - more than a few - predict the end of the world in a fairly gleeful tone. What exactly is wrong with those people? Do they actually want the world to end? Is that some kind of an extension of a death wish?

I need a vacation

Continuously tired now. I need a vacation. I have a vacation fairly soon but have to do a lot of stuff before that.

Janka's and Orava's wedding was on Saturday. It was a very good wedding and seems like everyone had a lot of fun, including Janka and Orava. There was good food and booze and full moon and good company.

On Sunday was the first session of Kristel's Buffy campaign. Was, fun, too, despite the hangover.

Sunday night: hangover and nightmares. Couldn't really sleep.

Monday: went to visit Anu with Elaine. Elaine brought a delicious cake and we had a good time, but it seems that the fifth evening in a row in a household that has cats was a bad idea no matter how many pills I swallow.

Finally brought my little telescope to Anu's place (she has a great view out of the window) but it was cloudy.

Friday, August 19, 2005

Lucky me

I must be lucky this week: I start wanting stroopwafels, and they jump right into my hands from the shelf of the K-supermarket in the Kamppi terminal.

They are honey-flavored (to add insult to injury, they have two different kinds and both are honey-flavored) but this is just a small drawback.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Come here! Come here! We have just raised the prices!

The Ministry of Education is planning to set tuition fees for foreign students. The sums have not been decided on yet, but the sums between 3500 and 9500 euros per semester were suggested.

The real fun was the reasoning behind it. As Helsingin Sanomat put it: "Maksut liittyvät tavoitteisiin lisätä korkeakoulutuksen kansainvälistymistä. Esimerkiksi ulkomaisten tutkinto-opiskelijoiden määrä on tarkoitus kaksinkertaistaa." (Basically, they want to start charging fees from foreign students in order to make Finnish education more international and attract twice as many foreign degree students as they have now.) You see, as soon as the foreign students hear that now we charge for the education, they will all rush here. Sure thing. Raising prices will get us many new and enthusiastic students. And war is peace. And freedom is slavery. And arbeit macht frei. And Islam is a religion of peace. And your hair will become longer faster if you trim it regularly. And eating a lot of chocolate will make you lose weight.

The most criminal profession

According to a survey conducted in Russia by Levada center, people there see police officers as the most criminal profession. 38% of respondents thought that way. Somehow I am not surprised.

Politicians came in a distant second, with 19% of votes.

Only 14% of those surveyed considred the actual professional criminals to be the most criminal profession.

All of this reminds me of a joke:

A Chukcha parked his car in the middle of Kremlin's inner yard. A cop sees that and starts yelling at him:
"How can you! Don't you know that this is Kremlin? Deputies and ministers walk here!"
"That's OK, I locked the car very well."


Want them. A coworker fed me a few, and I remembered how good they were. If anybody knows where to get them in Helsinki, please tell me.

Bombs in Bangladesh

300-400 bombs (numbers vary in different sources) exploded in Bangladesh, all because they attacked Iraq. Oops, wait, they didn't. Never mind.

Luckily the bombs were Bangladesh-quality and killed only 2 people. Hope all the other terrorists will learn their bomb-making from these ones.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

The no-fly lists

The no-fly lists are a total idiotism (as opposed to check-those-people-especially list). I understand that some people are very suspicious and should be checked thoroughly, but hey, after you went through every item in their luggage and gave them a cavity search, wouldn't even Bin Laden be fairly safe to fly with? What is he gonna do, crash the plane with the power of prayer, or fart toxic fumes? (Hmm, how is that for the Cypriot plane disaster conspiracy theory?)

Very few people in the world are as dangerous as to pose a threat to aviation even after a thorough search. If somebody is a known terrorist, just arrest the fucker. God knows you don't need evidence or probable cause anymore. If somebody just has the same name as a known terrorist, just search them properly and let them onboard.

The list is supposed to contain names, dates of birth, nationalities and passport numbers. Problem is, the Transportation Security Administration compiled the list with the normal federal government accuracy, which means that a lot of data is missing. So for the most part it's just the real and fake names of known terrorists. And the fuckers have been so inconsiderate as to use most common Arabic names and some common non-Arabic ones.

The latest idiocy has been trying to ban babies from flying because their names appear on the list. I know that Hamas has used teenage suicide bombers a number of times, but isn't a 10-month-old a bit too young?

The terrorists probably use new names instead of recycling the old ones, and in the meanwhile perfectly good citizens are barred from flying and have a hell of a difficult time removing their names from the list.

Even the Congress and Senate are not immune. Some of their members found themselves on the list. Some terrorist with a sense of humor has used the name T. Kennedy, and they tried to prevent Senator Edward (Ted) Kennedy from boarding five times. Do those morons have any idea how common the name Kennedy is? (It is the 137th most common name in the US and 0.067% of population has it, which makes about 200 000 people.)

Come on, people. The Congress might be the opposite of progress, but I don't think anyone in the House or Senate is a terrorist or a threat to aviation. Not even Darrell Issa. At most our elected officials just drive drunk and embezzle taxpayer money.

And what, pray tell, are people supposed to do if they are barred from flying? Walk? Swim? What happens if their name gets on the list while they are traveling somewhere, how are they supposed to get home? I can almost see a scenario: an honest citizen Muhammed Ibrahim comes from his native Camelfuckistan to visit his relatives in America. On his way back he is stopped from boarding the plane because his name is similar to one of the 100 names used by the notorious terrorist Al-Zawahiri. He asks "but how do I get home?". TSA answers: "not our problem". The next day, while he is still trying to figure out the details of booking a plane ticket from Canada and actually getting there, the USCIS arrests him for overstaying his visa. "But they did not let me go home yesterday!" - "Not our problem."

If any terrorist happens to read this: can you please use the name George W. Bush the next time you are in the US? The whole nation will have a lot of fun when they don't let Dubya into Air Force One on account of his being a threat to aviation and national security. Air Force One is a military airplane and is therefore probably not covered by the TSA rules, but hey, a girl can dream.

The weekend: movie, karjalanpiirakat and modem

On Friday I went to see the Hitchhiker's guide to the galaxy. It was OK. Spent the rest of the evening home with Killeri.

On Saturday Janka invited some people to bake karjalanpiirakat. It was an awful lot of fun - maybe I should try that at home. And the piirakat turned out much better than the ones you buy in stores. Was almost dead from the lack of sleep, but had a very nice evening anyway.

On Sunday morning went to Reetta-Leena's place to help her install her modem. She called me and asked me to buy her some cigarettes on the way. I did, and was very surprised when I felt a rather strong urge to explain to the cashier that I was not buying them for myself. I suppressed the urge but she probably figured it out when I did not know that there is more than one kind of green L&M's.

Nothing came out of the modem intallation because she did not have an ethernet card.

In the evening booted my own computer at home and it did a weird thing: kdm would let me log in but then would throw me out, and when I tried virtual consoles it showed me six of them on the same screen in small unreadable letters. Booting helped; for a second there I considered installing Debian.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Wars don't work

German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder said that Bush should not be considering military action against Iran, because we have seen that it doesn't work.

Hey, it worked in 1945. For the Allies, anyway.

Sunday, August 14, 2005

They said WHAT?!

Maher Arar, a Syrian-Canadian citizen who was detained in the US as he was returning to Canada through a US airport and deported to Syria in violation of US laws (the Immigration and Nationality Act says that unadmissible aliens should be deported back to the country where they just arrived from, which in this case would have been Switzerland), is understandably trying to sue the US Government. And look what a senior lawyer for the US government is telling his judge:

At most, Mary Mason told a hearing in Brooklyn, N.Y., passengers would have the right not to be subjected to "gross physical abuse."

If passengers are deemed to be inadmissible, they have no constitutional rights even if later taken to an American prison. Mason told Judge David Trager that's because they are deemed to be still outside the U.S., from a legal point of view.

Mason said the interpretation means travellers can be detained without charge, denied the right to consult a lawyer, and even refused necessities such as food and sleep.

SAY WHAT?! Somebody, please take those people to the Supreme Court, and the sooner the better.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Bakri comedy continued

Omar Bakri Mohammed: You can't keep me out of the country! I need a heart surgery!
British authorities: Yes we can. We are sure there are perfectly nice hospitals in Lebanon.
Lebanese authorities: Omar Bakri Mohammed, you are arrested. No, we don't have to tell you why.

Turns out Lebanon let him in because he is a Lebanese citizen, in addition to being a Syrian citizen. The guy has hard life: dual citizen of Syria and Lebanon, and has lived in Saudi Arabia and UK, and is wanted in all four.(Well, the British authorities are still thinking.)

The Bakri comedy continued

The media: Hehehehe! Omar Bakri Mohammed ran away!
Omar Bakri Mohammed: I am on vacation! I'll be back! Unless the British government says they don't want me.
The British government: We don't want you!

"We are all different!" - "No, I am not!"

One good thing about blogs is that they give you extra data points about how similar or how different you are from other people in various aspects. I usually find it difficult to access the ectent of similarities or differences by guessing. I tend to assume most people are in most aspects quite similar to me and get rather surprised when I run into an exception to this rule.

I mean, of course I know where I stand in relation to most people in most ways that are either very visible or very commonly quantified, such as age, height, weight, intelligence, salary, education level, breast size, hair color, etc., and now - bless the Net - know that some people share my sexual fetishes, but I often wonder about many other things that people don't talk about because they just are not that important. How many people get moments of extremely violent rage like I described in the previous entry? How many people strongly prefer rye bread to any other kinds? How many people sometimes see something that looks like lightning when they close their eyes? How many people configure their desktop so that focus follows mouse? How many people throw up if they try to read in a moving car? How many people are paranoid about getting pregnant? How many people have some hairs that turn gray and then turn dark again?

The most amazing discovery so far has been that apparently very few people can get very sharp bursts of a very pleasurable sensation in their necks by stimulating some particular nerves in their hands and arms. Before I wrote that entry I assumed everyone could do it. Then I wrote it and it turned out almost nobody knew what I was talking about.

Anger will lead you to the dark side

If graphic violent fantasies bother you, please do not read.

Sometimes I get angry. Not normally angry, but really, really angry: there is the feeling of more energy flowing through me than my body can hold, and extremely vivid violent images. There is a feeling of buzzing in the head, sort of like some kind of drug (adrenaline?). Some 7 or 8 years ago there was a short period when suppressing this impulse caused physical pain, but this has passed.

Among some other things, this is often triggered by unexpected physical pain or sudden threat thereof.

Yesterday I was walking by Forum and some guy who was smoking there threw his cigarette, which he did not bother to extinguish, right in my direction, missing my leg by centimeters. He did not mean to hit me - just threw a burning cigarette on a sidewalk about three meters from him without even looking.

I immediately went into my "enemy! kill! destroy!" mode, and the very graphic images of assaulting the guy, throwing him on the ground, stomping on him, ripping his nostrils out, scraping his eyes out with a pencil, breaking every joint in his body, etc., started overflowing my mind. My face, apparently, too, because the guy started screaming "sorry, sorry!" and disappeared faster than an evil spirit.

I have no problem suppressing such impulses, at least in the sense of not acting on them (or in general choosing to act according to my much better judgement rather than to my occasionally rather bloodthirsty emotions). But still there is always fear in the back of my mind: what if one day the suppressing does not work? What would have happened if the guy's cigarette had not missed my leg?

It also scares me to think that this kind of ultraviolent impulses happen to everybody else, including people with less self-control. Anu says they do not happen to everybody, but I find it hard to believe that they are particularly rare.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Vote today, hellfire tomorrow

I found the webpage of al-Ghurabaa, allegedly one of the successors of the late al-Muhajiroun. The webpage seems dedicated to explaining how voting and running for office is against Allah's will and will lead you into kufr, hellfire and eternal damnation. Anyone who votes or runs for office is an apostate, and you know what you are supposed to do with apostates... The thing is complete with a fatwa from our old friend.

It came to my mind that if I ever were concerned about the political power of fundamentalist Muslim population (perish the thought) this is exactly the kind of webpage I would put up.

I am not admitting to anything, mind you. I would never admit to that quality of web design.

Oy vey!

Shit, what did I drink yesterday?

There was a company party, and it was a good one. We played minigolf, which was fun although I really sucked at it. It was a bit windy though, and the wine cups tended to go flying all by themselves. At some point it started raining really hard and we started running to a restaurant, but by the time we got there we were all wet, or at least I was.

The restaurant's name was Central, and they had exceptionally good steaks. I wish I could make steaks like that.

Then we went to Punavuoren Ahven, which has arranged more non-smoking space and got some new Belgian beers since I'd been there last time. Should go there more often.

There had been some kind of storm, and when we went home there were pieces of trees everywhere.

But now I am hung over.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

What the fuck?

What the fuck are Russians doing in our airspace?

Lebanese vacation

Now Omar Bakri is saying that he is on vacation and will be back in 4-5 weeks. Hope the police have the handcuffs ready.

Goodbye Omar, and don't come back

Omar Bakri Mohammed, an extremist cleric who has dreamed of making Britain an Islamic state, fled the country with his tail between his legs as the authorities were considering bringing charges against him for treason and encouraging terrorism.

Different sources say different things as to whether or not he intends to be back, and whether or not authorities will be waiting for him in the airport with a nice brand-new pair of handcuffs.

It is interesting to note that while Omar Bakri Mohammed encouraged young men to die and kill for Islam, he himself fled the country at the first hint of a chance that he might have to spend the rest of his life in prison as Abu Hamza's roommate.

Instead of going to hell and onto a frying pan where he belongs Bakri Mohammed went to Lebanon. Lebanon has my condolences, although one could think they would learn from the experience of the previous countries that hosted the esteemed sheikh. He was expelled from his native Syria for trying to participate in a coup, and is still wanted there, and was later expelled from Saudi Arabia for islamic extremism. Frankly, I don't see why anyone would want him with a resume like that - doesn't Lebanon have enough trouble already without him?

According to BBC the Muslim Council of Britain had said his departure would bring joy and happiness to the UK's Muslim community. I am sure the Christian, Jewish, Hindu, atheist and all the other communities share the feeling.

Monday, August 08, 2005

Getting old

A few friends have written about getting old, and now is my turn.

I am not really bothered much by it in any way other than physical. I find the idea that I and everybody I know will become progresively older and sicker and then die terrifying. Change - or stagnation - is not.

(BTW, when I die, please bury an axe with me. I don't really believe in the afterlife, but just in case there is one and I get to visit the creator and discuss the question of aging and mortality with him/her/it/them, I don't want to come there with empty hands, but with a weighty and sharp though somewhat primitive argument.)

As for change and stagnation - I used to be worried about what I will become when I grow up. I have grown up, and I have become what I have become, and I don't miss the angst of my younger years at all. For the last 3 years I have been more or less satisfied with my life, and the thought of 50 or so more years of it sounds like too little.

I always knew I don't want children. It took me many years to realize that I don't really want an academic career either, or any other career that interferes with my life too much. I like having a job that is reasonably fun and pays reasonably well, such as writing software. I like having good friends, and a good boyfriend, and spending my evenings with them. I like movies, and books, and good food and good beer. I think I could go on like this forever.

I suppose it is the sign of stagnation that I am satisfied with my life and do not feel like I need any change. I am not worried, though.

I don't feel like I have any problem finding people to hang out with in the evenings. I am either out or having some friend over almost every night. In fact my social calendar is a lot fuller now than it was when I was 18, and the company is better (I used to know quite a few very good people back then, too, and still see them now when I have a chance, but the ratio of nice people to obnoxious assholes in my social circles has improved dramatically over the years.)

Some problems of youth are long forgotten, such as fake IDs and homemade booze. We are drinking better wine, and often can afford food with it.

Everything that used to be fun when I was a teenager is still fun, and I found some new fun things, such as role-playing games.

I used to worry about friends having children, and still worry about many friends having children at the same time, but even this is less scary that it used to be. Much as the desire to have a baby is uncomprehensible to me, it's usually not the end of the world when somebody who wants them has them. Some people tend to disappear after having a kid, but some just cheerfully continue life as usual. Friends who had a baby a year ago did not disapper anywhere, nor did the ones who had a baby a few months ago. A whole group of friends who have started disappearing 8 years ago when they started having kids is starting to resurface now, and don't seem any worse for the wear. One friend has a real live teenager now, and she is quite entertaining. I think one can easily survive friends' childbearing if the first ones already have adult children when the last ones are still just trying to get pregnant.

Sometimes I run into people who tell me that I should grow up. Usually they are relatives. Often it's a reaction to me being excited about something. Don't know what the fuck is that about.

Life is good. Want more of the same. More software to write, to earn more money, more travel and books and movies, to meet more nice people.

Sometimes I am bothered by the fact that I see people younger than myself who have achieved more, but I know that most of them paid some price that I did not want to pay.

Mommy! Mommy! This is not fair!

Omar Bakri Mohammed finally figured out he is about to be deported or worse, and he is totally shocked.

He thinks it's not fair. He is lived in the UK for about 19 years on taxpayers' money, has recently received a £31,000 Ford Galaxy, courtesy of the British taxpayer, and does not want to leave it all behind. (The article I quoted engages in a fairly lengthy counting of the taxpayers' money in Bakri Mohammed's pocket.

"I have wives, children, sons-in-law, daughters-in-law. It would be hard on my family if I was deported." Don't you worry, Omar. I am sure that British taxpayers will continue to take care of them.

He is wondering that if he has done something wrong how come nobody has charged him yet. I am wondering about it myself, and I am sure that a lot of other people are asking the same question. I am sure this oversight will be corrected very soon now. However, I think that any reasonable person should figure out that if you move to a foreign country, don't bother to find a job for 19 years, found an organization whose purpose is overthrowing the current state, recruit people for terrorist organizations and declare a war on the country where you live, there just might come a time when they kick your sorry ass out.

Last winter I did point out here in my blog that declaring war on the enemy while being in the enemy camp and surrounded by overwhelming numbers of the same enemy might not be the most winning survival strategy. He should've read my blog. Or at least von Clausewitz.

The weekend

Drank in the park with Anu and Elaine on Friday. At some point it got cold and we went to my place. It was nice, but it was probably this summer's last drinking in the park for me, at least in Helsinki.

Otava tried to rape a chihuahua, almost successfully. Almost gave us all a heart attack, too, including the chihuahua.

Forgot a sparkling wine bottle in the freezer. I got it out the next day and figured it would just melt by itself, but instead it opened by itself an produced a fountain of very cold sparkling wine ice. Brr!

On Saturday went with Killeri, Maija and J.-P. to a family party in Tampere. Good party, and the weather was good for a change. Was nice to see all the people, too.

At night went to Mos and Pörrö's place. It was very nice to be there, but I was too tired to be able to participate in any of the games people were playing, and went home early.

Lost one of my favorite earrings somewhere on the way.

On Sunday I was pretending to be a vegetable but then Seanna came over with beer and I cheered up.

Tested the new washing machine and it works much better than the old one. Also tested an air cleaner I just bought and it works, or at least makes scary sounds.


Who the fuck did we elect to the city council again?

Some genius bought an ice cube for 60000 euros and put it in the Pikku-Parlamentti park, where it promptly melted. OK, it was a real huge ice cube, but 60000 euros? At the time when Helsinki's dental care is Tampere-sized?

Another genius (or maybe the same one) decided to have a city marathon during the Friday evening rush hour at the place where all the Espoo buses come into the city. The traffic got so constipated that the buses let people out on the bridge and everybody walked. Thanks god for the subway.

Friday, August 05, 2005

Surprises of the business world

Endero's recruiting is going slower than they want. Gee, who would've thought...

Britain gets tough on terrorism

From BBC:

Tony Blair decided to get tough on foreign terrorists. British hospitality had been abused and people should know the "rules of the game are changing", he said. It's about time.

"Among the planned changes he said people would be refused asylum if they had been involved in terrorism."

What? Do they mean Britain is now still giving asylum to people who had been involved in terrorism? One would think that even Blair could figure that one out before the terrorist attacks, especially since Blair likes to remind British people that they were warned about terrorism before it happened.

Why would anyone in their right mind let a known terrorist in? Yeah, they are often persecuted in their home countries, and usually for a good fucking reason - because they are fucking terrorists. Bugger the humanitarian reasons. There are a lot more refugees in the uncivilized world than places for them in the civilzed world, and the civilized countries can choose. There are millions of decent people in the world trying to flee war, genocide, Sharia or something.Take them as refugees and leave terrorists where they are. If they are going to get mubaraked there, good riddance.

"The Hizb ut Tahrir organisation and Al-Muhajiroun - or its successor group - are to be banned, Mr Blair announced."

Just in time, yeah. Al-Muhajiroun was disbanded last October. OTOH, the Saviour Sect is hopefully considered to be its successor group.

The real development is that they will start deporting foreigners for advocating and glorifying terrorism, but they have not decided on the exact guidelines yet.

A Jewish terrorist

Fuck. Eden Natan-Zada, an Israeli settler, has killed 4 people and wounded 12 on a bus in Shfaram, an Arab town in Israel. This is the biggest terrorist act by an Israeli Jew against Arabs since Baruch Goldstein killed 29 people in 1994.

Natan-Zada had connections to Kach, the same terrorist organization that Goldstein belonged to.

The citizens of Shfaram have already dispensed the swift and well-deserved justice to Natan-Zada. And he ain't getting any virgins in paradise, either.

And now a bit about the root causes (media loves talking about root causes of terrorism, so maybe I should too): just like some of the London terrorists, Natan-Zada has recently found religious (in his case Jewish) fundamentalism. Authorities should really look into the question of who was his rabbi and what was he saying in his synagogue.

Thursday, August 04, 2005


OK, picture gallery is up and running now. You can still censor your own and your pets' pictures out of it by sending me an email saying which pictures you want out.

Little bits of absurdity

1. On Tuesday Anu and I had several glasses of wine at my place, and then I remembered that I had a frozen 3-kilo piece of meat. Operating dangerous tools while drunk being our proud tradition, we took out a saw and started sawing it.

My saw proved too small and unadequate for the task. Every time the sawing stopped or even slowed for a second the saw would get stuck like that. Sawing with a knife was not much easier. Finally the combination of knife and hammer brought us the long-awaited victory.

2. A coworker comes to work, puts his jacket on the coat rack, his sword in the corner and his Lidl bag on his sword.

3. Yesterday Killeri and I dragged one washing machine out and another one in. Absurd moments were many, but luckily nobody was around with a camera. Hope the neighbors did not get too traumatized.

The Jews have poisoned all bananas

Via Jihad Watch and Little Green Footballs:

A visiting imam in Werribee College, an Islamic school in Australia, told students that the Jews were putting poison in the bananas and they should not eat them.

Hey, I understand that hating Jews is a professional duty for every properly radical imam, but why does the guy hate bananas so much?

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Intelligent design

Our chimp-in-chief has told a group of reporters that American schools should teach alternatives to evolution, such as intelligent design theory. Ugh. The man himself is a living proof that an alternative to evolution does exist, although I would not call him a result of intelligent design either.

OTOH, what do you expect from a guy who asks Pope for scientific advice?

Fundies are all excited. "It's not some backwater view. It's a view held by the majority of Americans," said Gary Bauer. Yeah, and we have a name for those people in America. They are called "the lower half of the bell curve". (I seriously hope there is no more than half.)

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

A weird name thing

I have always been under impression that among the civilized classes in Finland people are free to change or not change their names when getting married without inviting disapproval either way. I mean, there are a lot of people with strong feelings one way or the other, but I used to think that everybody agreed that other people should do whatever they please and that it's OK.

Apparently there is an exception. A few people have recently said things that showed that they consider it somehow improper for a married person to still use a last name they got from a previous spouse.

Never ran into this phenomenon anywhere else. I know somebody back in the US who is still using the name of the husband number 2 although she is married to number 5 now. Is it common here to disapprove of married women using ex-husbands' names?

Wedding! Clothes! Panic! Panic!

Viljo and Jenni got married and had a wedding party in Gustus&Vera last night. After the regular panic of looking for clothes and locating my only pair of pantyhose I even managed to come there on time in spite of the fact that I fell off my shoes all the time.

Note to self: don't buy any shoes that have low but very narrow heels. You can't walk in them.

Viljo and Jenni looked great - Jenni had one of the best wedding dresses I'd ever seen - and had apparently gotten accustommed to people jumping around them and taking pictures. The party was good, and the cake was good, and there was a lot of people that I should see more often.

After the party I went home to change into real clothes before going to a bar with friends, and got a call from Oska saying that he needs me to proofread one document right-fucking-now. OK, he told me that before and I should have done it over the weekend, but when I opened it on Monday morning and realized that it was 113 pages instead of the usual 5-10 I figured it could wait. I was wrong.

Oska was pissing boiling water and saying that he needs the thing right away, I was struggling to open the fucking thing (a .doc, of course) in Abiword and OpenOffice, the thing was so fucked that it did not want to open properly in either and after I did get it open it turned out to contain all the texts of all the previous revisions inside the text.

Saving the thing as a .txt and a .html produced fucking monsters. In the end I got a semi-readable version. I would not describe the text here for fear that the author (who was not Oska but whose English was no better) might read this and also because I don't feel I know enough swear words. Struggled with it till 1:30, did half, called Oska and he told me to forget it and go to sleep, which I gladly did.

I am seriously considering...

...uninstalling OpenOffice, KWord, Abiword, etc., from my home computer and sending all the .doc-files that I receive by mail straight to /dev/null where they belong. I really don't want to see them. If you have a .doc file that you want me to see, do me a fucking favor and save it as a .txt before sending it to me. Or a .pdf, or a .html, or something else sensible. Keep your .doc to yourself and your Windows where it belongs.

And yes, Oska, that also concerns you. Especially you.

Monday, August 01, 2005

Hey, now we know where cancer comes from!

According to Haaretz, Rabbi Moshe Tzuriel (apparently an opponent of Gaza pullout) has cursed... oops, I mean issued a halachic warning that god will punish police and soldiers who participate in the pullout with cancer and traffic accidents.

"Some years thereafter, if he suffers a malignant disease or a fatal road accident, everyone will know where he got it from."

Should've rather threatened them with the flu. The punishment rate would've been about 100%.

The world is changed... I feel it in the water... I feel it in the earth... I smell it in the air...

British police are not only carrying weapons, they are shooting suspects in the head.

Revoking extremists' citizenships, so unthinkable a year ago, is being used in France now.

While a couple of years ago French ban on veils in schools ignited fierce debate and threats from Islamists, Italy has banned face-covering veils even on the streets now, and it has gone almost unnoticed. Many Belgian cities have banned it too, with just as little noise.

Pakistan has kicked all the foreign students out of the religious schools.

British transport police is trageting certain ethnic groups, and is saying so openly.

Some of this is undoubtedly a healthy reaction to the state of the world and is a positive development, but all of this put together gives me a strong and unpleasant feeling of living in interesting times. Last time my interesting-times-meter was ticking so violently was in the late eighties.

A sad sign on interesting times is that when I read the article title "British, Italian Police Grill 21 Suspects" for a second there I took it literally.

The dumbass

The 21.7. terrorists were arrested, one of them (Hussain Osman) in Rome. He decided to talk to journalists, and claimed that he did not mean anything bad by trying to detonate a bomb. He just wanted to attract everyone's attention to the war in Iraq, and wouldn't hurt a fly, you know, that's why he blew up a detonator next to a big canister full of explosives.

"I hardly know anything. They only gave me a rucksack to carry on the Tube in London. We wanted to stage an attack, but only as a show. Who gave me the explosive? I don't know. I didn't know him. I don't remember. We didn't want to kill, we just wanted to scare people."

You take a bomb from somebody you don't know, believe that it won't explode for real, take it on a subway with you and press the button? Hey, somebody please contact Darwin Awards. I think we got this year's winner right here. (Assuming that Darwin Awards accept cases of people unable to breed due to being locked up for life.)

Hell, and I thought that I heard the dumbest excuse ever when a relative of mine was on the jury in the trial of a drunk driver who claimed that he drank a bottle of vodka after his accident while waiting for police to arrive.

The weekend

Had a bunch of linguists over on Friday. Lots of people I should see more often. Had a pretty good time in spite of too much chocolate cake.

Went to a Finnish beer breweries event with Jari and Risto, ran into some other friends there. The company and the weather was good, the breweries were unimpressive. went to my place after that, had some hot chocolate.

Sahti is all right but it says "murr" in the stomach. (Sahti is a Finnish beerlike drink but not quite beer, for those who don't know.)

Small miracles of our age

"Those damn Islamists give all of us terrorists a bad name," - decided IRA and laid down arms.