Pieces of Mind

Category archives for Pieces of Mind

February Pieces Of My Mind #1

I wonder what kind of event lead to entire 20-metre dinosaurs becoming fossilised as articulated skeletons. There’s been a lot of psychological research into the mental differences between conservatives and lefties. Chris Mooney’s The Republican Brain summarises it well up to 2012. And the refugee situation has really brought this out to me. I follow some…

January Pieces Of My Mind #3

People who got some very bad ideas drummed into them during the postmodern 1990s are now writing policies for Swedish schools. New study of twins documents that indeed, pot smokers aren’t as smart on average as other people. But most likely they become a) stupid and b) pot smokers because of their social environment. Pot…

January Pieces Of My Mind #2

One reason that it’s so hard to talk to believers about alternative medicine: the sharing of alt-med advice is largely a social, friendship-reinforcing activity. It’s not just irrelevant to believers, but quite rude, to question the medical efficacy of someone’s advice. This is not the case when you’re talking about tax forms or sewing machines.…

December Pieces Of My Mind #3

When we go out for dinner my wife wants to sample everyone’s dishes. And I want to make sure no food is wasted. So we both end up sampling everyone’s dishes. Danish metal detectorists refer to their finds as “cousins”. “Can somebody please ID this cousin?” I’m a typical Swedish atheist. I’m uncomfortable with people…

December Pieces Of My Mind #2

Wearing my early-90s Tolkien Society outfit for tonight’s Viking yule feast with the students. Been so long since I wore it that I’d forgotten where I’d put it. It was neatly stacked in the back corner of my closet’s top shelf. I’m slow on the uptake. It took me long to realise that the subway…

December Pieces Of My Mind #1

Found the secret passage between the humanities building and the library. Now I can go eat lunch without braving the elements. I flew to Umeå today along the contrail left by the aircraft when going south earlier in the morning. Contrails are really pretty up close. Once I saw two parallel ones, really thick and…

November Pieces Of My Mind #3

One of the most annoying and amateurish things a graphic designer can do, in my experience, is to insert hard hyphens. I make a policy of keeping conservative and libertarian people in my Facebook feed and not muting them even though I don’t agree with them. But lately I’ve had to add a subclause: I’m…

November Pieces Of My Mind #2

Oh, will you look at that? Ten weeks into the term I find the staff lunch room with microwave ovens and free tea. Typical academic precariat long-distance commuter. Last year I started to let the students suggest questions for the exam. The more I think about this idea the more I like its ramifications. Free…

November Pieces Of My Mind #1

I just saw toilet roll draped over a tree for the first time since 1977 when I lived in Connecticut. Hallowe’en has recently been imported into Swedish culture. It’s brought the tricks with it. Is somebody going to cover my dad’s car in shaving foam again? Lack of sunlight is a cause of vitamin D deficiency.…

October Pieces Of My Mind #2

Nice ad here on my blog for once. It does have a pretty woman in it, but she’s not a white Russian mail-order girlfriend. She’s a black potential student on the course “Swedish for programmers”. Movie: Taikon. Documentary about Swedish novelist and Roma activist Katarina Taikon. Grade: Pass With Distinction. The guy who installed the…