Lazing On A Sunny Afternoon


September unexpectedly turned warm and sunny. I'm a little under the weather and so can't do anything very energetic. But reading a review copy of a new geology book for the blog in my yard, in the sun, with my dressing gown down around my midriff isn't too bad.

Photo by Junior.


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But Sweden's meant to be cold, not warm, while it's cold here in England. It's not fair! it maybe really cold in Sweden now, and you're just trying to show how hard you are by lounging outside in shorts?

By Ian, Brighton (not verified) on 25 Sep 2010 #permalink

You are of course aware that the Vikings we sent to conquer the British Isles were the ones that were too wimpy to be allowed to remain in Scandinavia. (-;

You need to do some weight training.

Seriously. After the age of 30, you lose 10% of your muscle mass per decade.

It's OK, you learn to love the pain. It's a big serotonin kick.

You don't need to join a gym - get some dumbell sets and a bench, and you can do everything you need to do at home.

By Sandgroper (not verified) on 25 Sep 2010 #permalink

Cool, the temperature over here on the Canadian prairies also turned warm and sunny. After weeks of hovering around 4 or 5 degrees, today is a lovely 22 degrees and sunny. Gotta love the Indian summers!

Sandy, I'm a cyclist. I have some fairly respectable muscle but it's hidden by the dressing gown in the pic.

Martin, not all of it's hidden - just look at those calves!

By eleanora. (not verified) on 26 Sep 2010 #permalink

Martin, I know, I don't have any concern about your aerobic fitness and lower body development. But...and don't take this too personally...your upper body could do with some work, you skinny bastard. You need some muscle mass up there.

Plus I get the sense that you have been a bit sick for a while and I'm concerned your immune system might be a bit suppressed.

We all need both - everyone needs to do some resistance training, even the elderly - it maintains muscle mass and bone density, which are important when you get old.

Call me an old woman, but I worry about my mates, you know.

And is The Real Face of Jesus your longest running thread? It seems to have taken on a life of its own.

By Sandgroper (not verified) on 26 Sep 2010 #permalink

No, Paddy, IIRC he's already done that.

Although looking at one may be the next step up in energy expenditure as he recovers his strength...

By eleanora. (not verified) on 26 Sep 2010 #permalink

Paddy, topless calendar, I've done one of those!

Sandy, thanks, you're right, I'm a skinny bastard. But my health is excellent, I just catch a cold now and then.

The Jesus thread is very long! It woke up the other day with some fundie woman who started preaching. The much-commented entry about US politics having no left wing has far less comments.

Ian: "But Sweden's meant to be cold, not warm"

The warmth is because Martin and the other Southerners have exported the crappy weather to us up in northern Sweden! The only advantage is, while the bioinvasive species play murder with the ecology of the south, they usually drop dead when confronted with their first northern winter.

Haha, when global warming has helped scorpions, spiders or "serrasalmus nattieri" get comfy in the south, we in the north will be all scahdenfreude about it :)

By Birger Johansson (not verified) on 26 Sep 2010 #permalink

I had to look up Serrasalmus nattereri. Red bellied piranha? Seriously? Strewth! I'm strongly opposed to people keeping exotic pets. I guess finding piranha in local water courses is not quite as bad as getting your face chewed off by a chimpanzee.

M - I haven't been keeping notes or tracking you or anything, that would be extremely creepy, I just have a vague impression that you seem to get colds fairly frequently, or at least that you have mentioned it a couple of times lately within a fairly short space of time. I could be wrong, obviously. I could also be suffering from the onset of dementia.

Having lived in Hong Kong (the epicentre that spread the SARS virus to the world) through the SARS epidemic, which was a very stressful experience for everyone in HK who lived through it, and bearing in mind that HK was also the place that had the very first bird flu fatalities, I tend to be a bit jumpy about viruses, especially having a vulnerable child to look out for and try to protect during that period.

I am a strong advocate of getting an annual flu shot - there is no real downside, very few people seem to have any adverse reaction (apart from children under 5 this past flu season in Australia, some of whom died apparently from the inocculation, which is definitely not funny, but I think that was specific to Australia), and even for the young and healthy, it saves a lot of downtime and misery. For the elderly and health-impaired, it saves death. Well, maybe for the elderly it's a merciful release, I dunno, but when my time comes I'd much prefer an overdose of morphine to the swine flu, thank you doctor. I'm also a strong advocate of euthanasia, but that's a different topic. Fuck the fucking Christians for opposing it on fucking moronic religious grounds, you total fuckwits. Thank fuck that when my Dad was dying of cancer, his palliative care doctor was a compassionate Muslim who had no problem with it.

My wise old Chinese doc in Hong Kong (who slipped me some antivirals to keep to protect my family from bird flu if needed) advised me about 10 years ago to have a flu shot every year, and since then I haven't had a single dose of flu or a cold. It's worth it. Seriously. You know the old adage "What doesn't kill you makes you stronger?" It's bullshit. What doesn't kill you outright makes you weaker. I could write an essay on that topic. And check out the expression "herd immunity". It's real.

The other thing that photo reminded me of is how white skinned you northern European types are. Blinding. But the upside of that is that you don't need to make an annual pilgrimage to the skin specialist to get checked out for skin cancer. I grew up under a hole in the ozone layer and a culture that favoured lying out on the beach in 40 Celsius to get as burnt as possible, and now I and my countrymen are paying for that stupidity big time. Perth, Western Australia, skin cancer capital of the world. Don't come here, it sucks.

Anyway, M, I'm sorry for making personal comments, they simply reflect my misplaced paternalistic concern for your well-being, and I hope that cold disappears very soon, and doesn't come back. We made a connection and I care about you Brother, that's all there is to it.

By John Sandgroper (not verified) on 27 Sep 2010 #permalink

I'm not unhappy at all about that, it's great that you care!

And I agree completely about the flu shot. Even though I've had surprised comments from the district nurse, silly woman. It costs a pittance and it may save me from a week of feeling like a zombie. Also, it reduces the risk of me inadvertently killing some old person by sneezing on them.

Ironically, many international comments on Martin's political blog entries concern what is referred to as the Swedish 'nanny government' situation. When Martin posts a nice little picture of himself, however, many commentators (and commentatrices) starts worrying about the poor man's health. :-)

They've forgotten about the nanny state that keeps me alive. They just think "Holy shit, he's an archaeologist and makes no money, look at how skinny the poor bastard is!".

Though actually, the only public money I receive is the universal monthly barnbidrag "feed your kids" check. My cash money is otherwise entirely traceable back to old industrialists who established private endowments back in the day.

I promise never to say you are a skinny bastard again.

By Sandgroper (not verified) on 28 Sep 2010 #permalink