Dr. Martin Rundkvist is a Swedish archaeologist, journal editor, public speaker, chairman of the Swedish Skeptics Society, atheist, lefty liberal, board gamer, bookworm, and father of two.

Anders Winroth (born in 1965) is a Swedish historian who received his PhD from Columbia in 1996 and now holds an endowed professorship in history at Yale. He has written several books on the Viking Period for lay readers, the latest one of which I’ve been given to review. The main contents of The Age…

My whole housing development recently changed Internet Service Providers. We now have optical fibre from Ownit, offering hundreds of megabits per second. It works just fine. But there’s a security issue and Ownit aren’t taking it seriously. All over Sweden, Ownit are deploying wifi routers that work out of the box. If you want to…

October Pieces Of My Mind #1

The Relentless Babblings of the Darkmire Soothsayer: “And then there shall come a day when things will be lost and people won’t know where things really are and brothers will run away for absolutely no reason at all and fathers won’t know where other fathers are or where they once were. And friends will walk…

I did a fun exercise with my Umeå archaeology freshmen Monday: a role-playing debate about the ethics of burial archaeology. The framework was a hearing at the Ministry of Culture regarding a planned revision of the Ancient Monuments Law. I assigned randomised groups of up to 4 students roles as archaeologists, neopagans, the Swedish Church,…

September Pieces Of My Mind #2

Did I just tell the students that “polysemic” refers to people who donate repeatedly to sperm banks? Surely not? In mid-70s Dungeons & Dragons, players would often bring their characters from one dungeon master and gaming group to another, effectively skipping between worlds. Unheard of in Swedish 80s and 90s gaming. Annoying: seeing that the…

Fornvännen’s Winter Issue On-Line

Fornvännen 2013:4 is now on-line on Open Access. Ulf Ragnesten on an ornate late-1st millenium BC bronze chain belt from a cremation grave in a Gothenburg suburb. Lars Larsson and Bengt Söderberg on recent excavations at the huge 1st millennium AD royal manor complex of Uppåkra, with in situ arson victims found among the building…

The Sweden Democrats (SD) is a racist populist party that got 13% of the vote in the recent Swedish parliamentary election. They got into Parliament four years ago at the expense of the Labour Party. This time around they more than doubled their support at the expense of the Conservative Party, who lost a precarious…

September Pieces Of My Mind #1

Why you should never get a tattoo: it’s a fashion item that can never be upgraded. Imagine being forced to wear 1979 glasses all of your life from age 18 on. So boring to proofread hyphenation. Artists referenced in the sleeve notes to Goat’s first album: 1. Dan Andersson, 2. Boubacar Traoré. Jrette has excellent…

Rocky Horror References John Carter

“He was a splendid specimen of manhood, standing a good two inches over six feet, broad of shoulder and narrow of hip, with the carriage of the trained fighting man. His features were regular and clear cut, his hair black and closely cropped, while his eyes were of a steel gray, reflecting a strong and…

Arrival Songs

The English language has a rich tradition of songs celebrating the joys of orgasm. Here are just a few examples. Sumer Is Icumen In (anon., 13th century) Come Again (John Dowland, 1597) Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus (Charles Wesley, 1745) Come, Thou Fount Of Every Blessing (Robert Robinson, 1757) Come, Ye Disconsolate (Thomas Moore, 1816) Oh…