Monday, May 07, 2007
Saturday, February 17, 2007
Birthday, lazing about
I can't believe I'm 27 now, it's such a grownup age... farewell "around 25" hello "almost 30". Anyway, it was nice to see my friends - for the first time in ages. It's so stupid how we all live in the same city but almost never hang out. Everyone seems to be so busy with school and work... I feel like I have at least two or three full time jobs right now. With school, the blogs (ok, so I write a lot less in this one than the other), the music stuff plus all the other time consuming projects I'm working on, it's getting a little crazy.
I read this article in the newspaper the other day about how Swedes my age don't worry much about their careers, and they don't feel like pouring their heart and soul into some job, because what really matters to them is hanging out with their friends and besides they know their gonna get some awesome job anyway so why worry, right? And I kept thinking "Who are these people?" Apparently they exist, because they keep showing up in polls, I've just never seen one in real life.
So. This weekend I'm going to do nothing except hang around the house, watch movies and possibly, if I can muster up the energy, go down to the store and stock up on junk food. Who knows, by sunday afternoon I may have turned into one of the "why should I care about a carreer"-people. Not likely though.
Wednesday, January 24, 2007
It's Buffy, baby
The new semester started two days ago, and once again I am reminded why I love social psychology: My next assignment is to prepare a discussion on an article about sociologists who are also Buffy-fans and their handling of the dual identity of scholar/geek when going to a slayage convention (yes, that is the actual term for the event). Ok, so I found the article myself, but still - I can't believe there's a discipline that lets me get away with this stuff.
Monday, January 22, 2007
1. Three names I listen to
Teresa, Axner, Tea
2. Something I like about myself:
I am genuinely happy for other people when they succeed
3. Something I dislike about myself
I procrastinate. A lot.
4. Something I am scared of:
dumbing myself down
5. Three things I want every day
Time to write, junk food, sleep
6. Three things I absolutely cannot do:
Play soccer, any two things at the same time
7. Favourite stuff to do:
Watch good TV shows, read, write, sing, engage in stimulating conversation
8. Something I want to do right now:
Not face the fact that I have a school assignment due tomorrow (see no. 3)
9. Best feeling:
being in the moment/outside of my head
10. Worst feeling:
11. Qualities I look for in a mate:
warm heart, honesty, scepticism
12. Am I in love right now?
Very much so
13. I want to get married...
...Meh, why not.
14. Three things I want to do before I die:
Have at least one kid, write for a living, go to Canada again
15. My most valued possession:
Soon: my magnificent home recording studio, for now: my computer
16. Something I want as a gift:
One of those fancy media player things so I can watch downloaded TV shows while I commute. An Ipod would be ok.
17. What I'm wearing right now:
A t-shirt that says "Howling at the moon" picturing wolves howling at the moon. And a bunch of other stuff obviously
baggy jeans, warm cardigans
19. Favourite animal:
The insane gangster of a cat known as Molly
20. Genres of music that appeal to me::
Super main stream hip hop, bluegrass and other folksy stuff, 80s pop
21. Current favourite songs:
Bowl of Oranges by Bright Eyes, Cherry Cola by the Eagles of Death Metal
22. Best/worst subject in school:
best: Music in grade school, post structuralist theory at university. worst: gym in grade school, cinematography at VMPS
Aquarius (not that i believe in astrology)
24. A book I love:
American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis
25. A movie I love:
Cry-Baby by John Waters
26. Tv-show I like:
27. Favourite scent:
fresh bread, washing detergent
28. I prefer to eat:
dad's clam chowder
29. I prefer to drink:
30. Favourite candy:
31. A place I want to go for a vacation:
Anywhere warm where they speak english (or by all means swedish, but those two demands are NOT going to be met in any one place). And Canada of course.
32. Colour of my eyes:
33. My height:
34. I believe in:
35. I play:
Actual guitar every day, Guitar Hero on PS2 every week, Rayman Raving Rabids whenever Johannes brings the Wii around.
36. Someone I admire:
37. My living situation:
With my boyfriend, his twin brother, younger brother plus girlfriend, parents and above mentioned cat in a somewhat crowded 6-room apartment in Stockholm
38. Number of dead plants in my home:
None, no thanks to me though - I tend to kill any plant in my care within a month (including cactuses)
39. This turns me on:
Whoa, too personal
40. This turns me off:
personal questions without having established sufficient level of trust
41. Favourite colour:
brown maybe? All the clothes I buy seem to be grey or brown nowadays
42. Favorite quote:
"Back off man, I'm a scientist." - Peter Venkman in Ghostbusters
43. A secret I know:
Actually, surprisingly few people tell me their secrets. Or maybe I just don't know very interesting people.
44. Best present I ever got:
I got a bike when I was a kid, I was pretty excited about that.
45. Last purchased album:
Uhm... I don't really buy albums. Pieces of You by Jewel maybe? That was a LONG time ago.
46. My best feature:
I guess my eyes. Most boring answer imaginable, but it's what I get the most compliments for, so whatever
47. My worst feature:
Horrible posture a lot of the time. Is that a feature?
48. Odd ability/talent:
I excell at solitaire
49. If I were an animal I would be:
A jittery horse maybe?
50. What are you listening to right now?
the hum of the computer
51. What have you done/are you doing today?
Made some of phone calls I've been putting off, got a hair appointment, went to class, bought a bunch of books, spent around two hours on various types of public transport.
52. Where are your parents born?
Gävle and... Norberg? Fagersta? Swedish small towns anyway
53. The latest program I installed on my computer:
Uhm... Miranda? I don't do a lot of installing as I share my computer with more tech savvy people
54. My favourite restaurant:
Don't really have one. There's a special place in my heart for Fifth St. Bar & Grill in Victoria BC, though
55. When did you last swim in a pool?
56. Were you ever in a school play?
Ha! Was I ever? I WROTE the damn things. Thank god noone still has those embarrasing spectacles on tape
57. How many children do you want?
More than one. Actually more than two - but it depends on how much time I have...
58. What style of music do you hate the most?
Blues rock with extended guitar solos, TRL-style "punk rock"
59. Who are you going to vote for?
Three years to decide thank god. Left rather than right though.
60. What TV channels do you have?
Uhm... Somewhere between 10-20, the standard swedish ones plus the Hallmark Channel for some bizarre reason
61. Ever been on a moped?
62. Ever made a crank call?
I was an incredibly neurotic child who was scared of being on the phone with strange people and therefore didn't get the point of crank calls
63. Ever gotten a parking ticket?
I don't drive
64. Have you ever/would you ever try bungy jumping or skydiving?
Pttf. Scared of heights, so no way
65. The farthest place you've visited?
That would be Victoria BC
66. Do you have a garden of your own?
Dude, I don't have my own room.
67. What's your favourite comic?
68. Do you know all the words to the national anthem?
The first two verses I know by heart after spending my formative years in endless choir practice. Swedes generally pretend the last two verses exist, so I've never had to memorize them.
69. Bath tub or shower?
Shower if I must choose
70. The best movie you have seen this month:
Little Miss Sunshine. How original.
71. Favourit pizza?
72. Potato chips or popcorn?
Popcorn. All the way.
73. What colour lipstick do you use?
Red, I guess? How many colours are there?
74. Have you ever smoked peanut shells?
75. Have you ever entered a beauty pageant?
I was in a choir school for six years where only the slim pretty girls were selected as soloists, so pretty much.
76. Orange- or apple juice?
Orange... no, apple.
77. Who last accompanied you to a meal at a restaurant and what did you eat?
I went to fancypants media hangout Allmänna Galleriet with Oscar and Anders, where I nearly ruined myself on some super expensive mutton something or other with risotto and some even more expensive wine. It was worth it though.
78. Favourite chocolate?
Marabou Frukt & Mandel
79. When did you last vote?
At the annual meeting of my favourite geeky gamer club, where I was elected president. Alright, chairperson, but president sounds so much more Rushmorian.
80. When did you last eat a homegrown tomato?
81. Have you ever won a goblet?
82. Are you a good cook?
Actual food: not really, fancy desserts: you bet
83. Can you put gas in a car?
Never tried. Again: don't drive
84. Have yoou ever ordered anything from the home shopping network?
I certainly haven't
85. Pepsi eller Coca Cola?
Coca Cola or rather diet coke
86. Have you ever had to wear a uniform in your job?
Yup: a rather french maid-like thing on my head when I was a waitress and construction worker gear when I was a construction worker.
87. What was the last item you purchased?
A soft drink
88. Have you ever thrown up in public?
At least not in front of strangers
89. Would you rather be a millionare or find true love?
I think I have the love part covered, so money please.
90. Do you believe in love at first sight?
I absolutely don't, that's the dumbest concept I ever heard of.
91. Can you be friends with your ex?
Depends on you as well as your ex
92. Who did you last visit in a hospital?
Grandpa? I took Anders to the emergency room once when he had sprained his ankle, but that's not really the same thing
93. Did you have a full head of hair as a baby?
I wouldn't know
94. What is your answering machine message?
I rarely listen to it. It's pretty basic I think.
95. What's in your bag?
Accumulated crap from months and months. Mostly school books, other books, pens & pencils and about a million scraps of paper.
96. A favourite thing to do before bed?
Snuggling up with the boyfriend and watching old Scrubs-reruns
97. What are you grateful for today?
That higher education in Sweden is still free
98. Where did you find this list?
It's pretty much on all of my swedish friends' blogs
99. Three people I want to fill out this questionaire:
Like you would ever do it, Matt - you're too lazy. Everyone else I know already has.
Friday, December 08, 2006
I'm exercizing the right not to think
He started by writing the word "OBSERVE!" in large print on the blackboard, then proceeded to slowly and deliberately sort through his notes while the class presumably pondered what great meaning could lay behind this move. "So", he finally said with a knowing smile. "What does this mean?" The following long and painful draging-uneducated-answers-out-of-eager-to-please-students session was followed by another open question: "How is thinking done?" And another: "What does 'understanding' mean?"
I spent most of the lecture not pondering how cognitive processes happen but rather why I get so insanely annoyed with this method of teaching. First off, I should explain that the questions he posed weren't the open philosophical conversation starters they might sound like - in the field of social psychology, there is actually a gigantic amount of research on exactly how people think, what observation is etc etc - and there are definitely right and wrong answers. Basically it was as if he was asking high school kids: "So, do you think there is some special pattern to how Homer writes?"
It's probably 90% my inner control freak talking, but it frustrates me to no end when people ask difficult questions they already know the answers to. What is the point? I mean, apart from seeming really clever? I felt like I was transported to one of those college movies where the young super hip (possibly plagiarized right out of Dead Poets Society) professor really challenges his students, and makes them think like they have never thought before. Not that it's the first time this has occured to me, but if I was in one of those movies, I so would have been the total square who runs to the headmaster at first chance to rat mr Super Cool out. No wonder I had such a riveting social life in high school...
Wednesday, December 06, 2006
I'm taking social psychology (that would be micro sociology, not group psychology - there's a world of difference) and there's this paper due in january that should be about... uhm, 25 pages or something. I had gotten the impression that there were a bunch of limitations on it, but in the end there were only two: We have to pick a scientific method from a short list, and the whole group (three people) have to agree on the subject. So. We're doing a discourse analysis (incredibly clever and post structuralist) on how teenagers are portrayed in the Tina Fey/Lindsay Lohan comedy Mean Girls plus in Queen Bees and Wannabes (the parenting guide book it was based on). The idea is basically to make a little chart of all the assumptions popular psychology makes about teenagers, and hopefully come up with som dastardly clever theory about it. In OTHER words: I get to watch DVDs all winter for school - admittedly the same DVD over and over again, but who's counting, right?
Anyway, I'll convince the others in the group to write the abstract in english so I can post it here. I'm sure it'll be fascinating stuff...
Thursday, November 30, 2006
Sweden was never much of a colonizing super power - we mostly just bullied the fins and norwegians as best we could for a few hundred years - but there was a brief period of time (around the second half of the 17th century) when Sweden could actually claim to be a major player in Europe - also known as the time of "the Swedish empire" (no, seriously). Charles XII was somewhat optimistically called "the Alexander of the North", and for a few years Swedes' egos nearly exploded with their own international importance (kind of like whatever the hell is going on with swedish indie music nowadays). The only thing remaining of Charles XIIs legacy today is a bunch of turkish dishes he imported, a statue and an obscure scholarly debate on wether it was the norwegians or his own soldiers who shot him - and then of course the aforementioned crazies.
Swedish neo-nazis don't have a lot of national heroes to hang on to, as most Swedes through history have opted for a more discreet flavour of racism, rather than the balls out, shaved head approach. In the spirit of loving the one you're with, and with a little creative history rewriting, Charles fit the bill of aryan über king well enough to suddenly find himself - three hundred years after his death - as the poster boy for an annual "pro-swedish march". This of course made the far-left crazies (who I personally have lot more sympathy for than their right wing counter parts) super miffed,they in turn got organized, and in no time at all November 30th had gone from "obscure memorial-day" to "Can the nazis really do that publicly?-day" to "Riot in the streets-day". The perhaps worst result of this alarming development was the truly horrific, based-on-West-Side-Story, even-worse-than-it-sounds teen romance flick 30:e November, which was savagely released onto an unsuspecting public in 1995.
Tomorrow I expect to read about a few half assed manifestations in the paper - as much as they try, the reclaim-kids of today just don't seem to have the fire they did back in the day (or maybe they're saving it for the Salem march, but that's another story), and the fascists are currently doing their very best impression of a bunch of really nice guys who just like to have a bit of law and order (also another - long and scary - story). In other words, the rest of the country can take a deep sigh of relief and then continue to slowly mozy along towards the right wing - business as usual.