Wednesday, January 31, 2007

In which the world reminds me how small it is

In the morning, on the way to work, I listen to news podcasts. Generally, I'll listen to NBC or ABC and if I can fit it in, the KUT podcast. KUT is Austin news.

Imagine, then, how happy/gobsmacked/amused I was this morning to hear the voice of my dear friend Oliver being interviewed on KUT as I listened to this morning's podcast. Oliver is the husband of my (also) very dear friend Lindsay.

It's just so strange to be on a train in a completely different part of the Earth and be taken straight back home by a voice which is so familiar to you.

This has happened before, of course. Maybe not quite as personally, but many times I've seen things that are based in Austin, or are from Austin, in totally different parts of the world.

Like the time Rich and I were in Budapest and an old movie filmed in Austin came onto the TV in this tiny little traditional wine bar we were sitting in. So strange to see that familiar landmark, the Texas Capitol building, there on the TV when you are in a completely foreign place.

The time I was in Turkey, hanging out in a youth hostel in a town near the ruins at Ephesus and met a guy from Austin with whom I have mutual friends.

When someone I know is mentioned in the media or a band from Austin plays in Norway and everyone acts like it's the second coming of Christ. (Texas music is WAY popular here.)

When you see someone you know, and you are both in different cities, way far away from home, and you're both like, "Whafuck? What are YOU doing HERE?"

And, of course, the vice versa when something from Norway comes into my consciousness when I am in Texas. Like when that bar named Oslo opened in Austin (it has since closed) and everyone I ever knew in Austin was all like "Have you been to Oslo yet? Is it like Oslo?" (Answers are Yes and No.)

Anyhow, in case you have forgotten or have just not thought about it lately, the world is a very small intimate place. And oddly enough, the more you travel, the smaller it gets.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Monday, January 29, 2007

things that happened Saturday night

My dress was a success. Though, I must admit, breasts tend to be an instant attention getter, both from guys (**eyes pop**) and women ("Wow what a dress! Aren't you cold?").

The hotel was quite cold, I never really warmed up all night. But then, what the hell was I thinking, basically wearing a silk slip in 20 degree weather in Norway?

Everyone looked very nice...I was impressed with the variety of lovely dresses and the men were all dashing.

The dinner was really tasty. I had scallops for the first time, and decided I like them.

The dessert was creme brule, and I had to fight Hannah for Mary's unwanted portion, but she was nice enough to offer to share it with me as a compromise so we did not have to stick forks in each other's necks. Hannah really likes creme brule, so I sort of think she would have taken my ass down had we not decided to share......

We were seated in the back of the dining the kitchen. I think our reputation had preceded us and they stuck us loud rowdies at the back . We were actually quite well behaved. For us.

I did not trip over my dress once. I was very proud.

I spilled a full glass of red wine all over me. Miraculously enough, it did not stain my dress, in fact it did not even show up on the dress. Which is really strange as it's red and black on a white background, and made out of silk. Oddly enough, the wine DID stain my underwear all to hell. I'm thinking that this dress is the perfect one for me...indestructible, comfortable, no bra necessary and versatile. Thank you Roberto Cavalli.

Mary broke her wrist on the dance floor. As far as I know, no one saw her do it.

I was pretty drunk, but not horribly so. I have a natural cut off ,where, when I start to feel a certain way, my body just WILL NOT accept any more to drink. I just can't do it. I don't know if it's a natural defense or yet another manifestation of my fairly moderate (as in, non-addictive) nature, but I rarely get so drunk I don't still have command over myself. In fact, as I like to say, I never do anything drunk I would not do sober, I just do it louder, better or with more fervor.

I had lots of fervor on Saturday night.

I had less fervor on Sunday.

And today? Today as I was gathering my vitamins this morning, an Omega 3 oil pill sort of broke and got fish oil all over my hand. Can I just tell you how absolutely HORRIBLE that smells? Oh my God, it's like dead fish that's been dead for three weeks, mixed with ass and grease and a bit of fish shit. And it's oily and it won't wash off. There's a hint of skunk there too. I have washed my hands about 700 times today and the smell did not go away until I chopped garlic for tonight's dinner. So now the fish stink is mitigated, but at the price of an eau d' garlic.


Saturday, January 27, 2007

One million and one things before 5pm

So tonight we are going to Rich's company's big New Year party. It's really the same as most people's annual Christmas party, except in late January, my theory being they have it because it's cheaper then. This is fine with me as it gives us something to look forward to in the winter doldrums. We get to dress up and they ply us with alcohol until we can't move, in true Norwegian hospitable tradition. It's always a good time. What's not to like?

Anyhow, I am all in a flutter as I have a million things to do to get ready for it. I will wear this dress, so at least I have that part figured out. But that is about ALL I have figured out. So, before 5 pm I must:

*Shave every available bit of myself that I have been ignoring as it's winter and who is gonna see my bare legs anyhow?
*Self pedicure.
*Self facial. Rinse. Repeat.
*Moisturize like crazy.
*Find contacts, put them in and get used to them.
*Self body scrub.
*Condition hair.
*Find way to mitigate the copper disaster of Thursday. Not possible..FUCK!
*Decide to wear hair up? Or down? Hate it either way and wear it same way as usual...big like all proud Texas gals.
*Makeup makeup makeup. Bemoan own suckage at applying eyeliner.
*Choose jewelry. Gold from Turkey? A necklace I made? Ropes of pearls?
*Figure out what to wear under and over very thin silk dress so that I can venture outside to catch train without literally freezing own tits off. Will probably have to wear leggings and boots under and remove upon arrival.
*Pack bag with things I might need, ie., cute shoes, eye drops, make up, glasses, aspirin, etc.
*Lose 10 lbs.
*Lose 10 years.

So that's what I need to do. Here's what I actually have been doing.

*Listening to iPod and dancing around house. new favorite song is a remix of a Goldfrapp song that so totally moves my ass, it's not even funny.
*Went to the local Turkish store and bought some Turkish cheese, Turkish delight, Turkish squash (no, I did not know they had their own squash either) and pomegranates. I do not know what I will make of these. Said thank you to the man at the cash register in Turkish. Was proud of myself, for about 1 second, until he started speaking Turkish back to me at a great speed, at which point I said thank you again and then left the joint with a sheepish grin.
*Made breakfast casserole for tomorrow in anticipation of hungover need for cheese, eggs and carbs.
*Got coffee at favorite coffee place.
*Got Boller at bakery. Nummy.
*Cleaned oven (yes, for real, what am I, a freak?)
*Cleaned microwave.
*Cleaned bathroom.
*Did two loads of laundry.
*Advised Rich on his wardrobe choices and sent him off to buy a new tie that did not have red stripes on it or look prep school. All his ties look exactly the same to me. It must be the male version of women's 100 pairs of black shoes.
*Did this blog post.

I will apparently do ANYTHING (clean the oven? Whafuck?) to avoid beautifying myself today. However, I will now get to it as I've run out of stuff to write about.....

Friday, January 26, 2007

meme because I am lame and a bit cranky

I took this from Jaye. I'm still cranky, with hair I did not ask for and an attitude, so I hereby warm you my answers could well be misanthropic.

1. When you looked at yourself in the mirror today, what was your first thought?
Where the HELL is the blonde I wanted?

2. Do you read while you’re in the bathroom?
Yes though I usually don't spend long enough to get any quality reading done.

3. What’s a word that rhymes with “fit”?

4. Favorite planet?
Stupid question?

5. Who is the 4th person on your missed call list?
I have a missed call list?

6. What is your favorite ring on your phone?
I don't do ring tones.

7. What shirt are you wearing?
A sweater from Noa Noa I got on SALE yesterday. Woo! Sale!

8. What were you doing 20 minutes ago?
Stirring my experimental chicken veggie white bean, and whatever else I can fit in the pot, soup.

9. Name the brand of shoes you’re currently wearing?

10. Bright or Dark Rooms?
Bright, except when I'm trying to sleep

11. What do you think about the person who posted this survey?
She's someone i hope to get to know alot better when I get back home.

12. If you’re in a room with two beds, which one do you sleep in?
The one I fall onto first.

13. What were you doing at exactly midnight last night?
Tossing and turning.

14. What was your last text message you received on your cell?
I dunno...probably one of those "Welcome to our coverage area" messages that the providers send out.

15. How do you like your eggs?
Scrambled hard with cheese or boiled to powder.

16. What’s a word/phrase that you say a lot?
I said alot of "fucking L" today when the trains were completely fucked up and it took me an hour and a half to get to work...a 15 minute trip normally.

17. Who told you he/she loved you last?
My mom

18. Last furry thing you touched?
Teehee...Rich's butt. (SORRY sorry, could not resist.) Ok, ok....a scarf I have.

19. How many drugs have you done in the last three days?
one chill pill...but it ended up being vitamin b.

20. How many rolls of film do you need to get developed?

21. Favorite age you have been so far?
20 was cool. I liked 34 too.

22. Your worst enemy?
Me. And a certain George.

23. What wallpaper do you have on your desktop?
A picture of my bedroom in Austin before I redid the house. It just looks so homey and calm.

24. What was the last thing you said to someone….
Ha det bra.

25. If you had to choose between a million dollars or to be able to fly?
fly. Fly fly fly.

26. Do you like someone?
I like everyone until they prove me otherwise.

27. If you could punch one person in the face, who would it be?
Anne Coulter.

28. What is the closest object to your left foot?
My right foot.

29. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be.
I'd like to stay at my high school weight forever.

30. If one thing about you could always remain the same, what would it be.
My sense of humor.

Aren't you lucky? You get a two-fer meme. This one from Vivi the Magnificent.

The "where were you?" meme....

1) Where were you when Armstrong first walked on the Moon?

Was I born yet?

2) Where were you when you heard Princess Di had died?

I was at a gathering at my friend Kirk's house. I'll never forget, me and a friend named Misty were sitting on an ottoman chatting and the news came on and we just stared at each other and were like "what the fuck?" We drank beer and were riveted to the turn of events.

3) Where were you on New Year’s Eve of 1999/2000?

I think we were in New Orleans. THAT was wacky.

4) Where were you on Sept.11, 2001?

I was about to start a new job the next day. That morning I had a wierd attack of hives and my upper lip swelled to about 4 times its normal size. I looked like Lisa Rinna. Went to the emergency room and they gave me anti-anxiety, anti-swelling pills. Those were fun. Anyhow, I was at home applying ice and preparation H to my lip to calm the swelling, and flying high on the pills, when the news hit. My lip swelled even more. I did start the new job the next day, but my eagerness for the whole thing was dimmed. I was pretty sure that was it for all of us. Start of the End of Days. It might still have been, come to think of it.

5) Where were you when you first heard about the big 2004 Tsunami?

In London, staying at my friend Karen's posh flat on Cadogan Square. (The flat was bigger than the one in the link, fyi.) The news was tremendously moving, and worrisome, as many of the people involved were British. Colleen, my step mother in law, was on a house boat in India, near where the tsunami hit there, and we were freaked out that she might have been hit. Luckily she was fine and didn't even feel it.

6) Where were you when you first heard that Madonna would go on tour last year?

I don't even have a fucking clue. And don't honestly care.

Thursday, January 25, 2007


Badger and Bookhart both just did posts about things that annoy them.

Here's my two cents. Possibly, four.

Blogger. Blogger is pissing me off. I hate this new google log in system. I hate the fact that I have to use an email address to log in instead of just a user name as before. I also hate hate HATE those word verification thingies...I can never read them, they are way too long and they are a pain in the ass. Blogger is also still slow, and my blog is loading much slower than it used to so that annoys me as well.

Cold. It's really fucking cold outside. Like last night it was ZERO. FAHRENHEIT. That's fucking cold.
Ice. Ice goes with cold and I can't walk on it, so it pisses me off too.

Hair. Right now I am hating my hair. I spent, like, 1400 kroners today on getting highlights. I wanted blonde and copper in chunky streaks. I also wanted to have my grey covered...I seem to be sporting a grey streak right in the front of my scalp. Instead I got just sort of an overall red with no streaks, and the grey is still totally there. I should have just fucking gotten the 65 kroner box of Foxy Brown at H&M and done it would not have been very different.

People who don't say excuse me when they run into you or acknowledge your existence as they push past you. Also, bitch at Noa Noa today? Yeah, you? Um, maybe instead of reaching in front of me and shoving me out of the way because you wanted that shirt on that rack that I was standing in front of, you could have waited a half a fucking second or so for me to move on. Because, yes, I do exist and I am fairly trying to pretend I'm invisible WON'T work. Instead, it's gonna get you a very dirty look and a "tsk tsk".

The TV show "Ugly Betty" and the movie "Devil Wears Prada". While these are both great, entertaining and well written, I get very annoyed with normal, healthy women being referred to as fat.** Size 6 is NOT fat. Size 10 is NOT fat. Hell, size 14 is NOT fat. I'm so sick of this obsession with thinness. People come in many shapes and sizes and people need to accept and appreciate the beauty in being different. Not all of us are size 4, and I for one like having an ass and boobs and a sexy softness about me. Gives me something to shake on the dancefloor.

My knees. My knees are older than me. I was dancing last Friday night and the next day my knees were NOT happy.

Pretty much everything happening politically in the US, with the exception of Barak Obama, who is very impressive. I think I am most annoyed with people who are against something or have moral issues with something (abortion, gay marriage) and so want to make it illegal for EVERYONE. Why do I have to be imprisoned by your beliefs? Back off and let me go on with my life. You don't know me and have no right to tell me what to do if it has no bearing on your life. Thanks.

People who beg for money because they say they are hungry, so you offer them food, and they refuse it saying that they want money. Well then don't ask for money to buy food if what you really want is cash!

Socks. I am really sick of wearing socks.

So now I am going to take a chill pill, a hot bath and have a glass of wine. All at the same time.

**You go Tyra! Who might I add, is similar in height AND weight to me...which means I am a supermodel.....right?

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

ya win some and ya lose some

Over on Vivi's blog she has been writing about how speaking a new language can be an up and down thing...sometimes you do it like a native and people treat you as such, and sometimes you just can't get it together. You never know when it will go right or wrong...but it can throw you for a loop either way.

Like today? I had to run some work errands and so stopped at Burger King for a burger at lunch. (I NEVER have Burger King in the US, but here it's actually the closest thing to a good burger I can I treat myself sometimes.) So I ordered my usual...a Whopper with cheese uten mayo. Uten means "without". I order this all the time, in Norwegian, and never have problems.

So HOW I got a Whopper with cheese with not only EXTRA mayo but also two packets of mayo on the side, I don't know. But I did. Only thing I can think is somehow my pronunciation of "uten" sounded like "two" which is pronounced pretty much like the English two, but a bit rounder.

I don't know. I really don't. All I know is when I took it back the guy was all like "you ordered two mayonnaise" and I'm like, no I said "uten" and he said "yes, two". DAMMIT!!!! So I'm like, "INGEN Mayonnaise!" "Ikke Mayonnaise"! " NO mayonnaise!"

It was depressing. Very depressing. And kind of gross, with all that mayo. Ick.

In my sad little defense, he was not a native Norwegian either, and so I think we both had accents that neither of us understood...which happens alot here. Norwegian is not a difficult language to learn, but it's damned hard to pronounce.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Eight big fat inches.

Oh yeah.

All night.

Eight inches.....................................

..................................................................................................Of SNOW, ya pervs!


It snowed all weekend.

I just thought you might want a change from the penis talk.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Ya think it can't get any better and then it DOES

Oh My God.

I went to pick up the tickets for the puppet show today. And there, on the tickets, is printed:


(Karla begins rolling around on the floor laughing and giggling and clutching her stomach in gleeful agony)

Stand up! Presents Puppetry of the Penis! Oh will they? I hope so!!!!!

I am already having so damn much fun with this show I almost don't need to see it. Really.

I got tickets on the 8th row. I thought that was close enough to see things without the use of opera glasses, but far enough away that if there is any Gallagher type stuff I won't get hit....

**This just in**
Guys? Anyone looking for a job?

Friday, January 19, 2007

Just two things to tell you

1) I got stuck in the elevator at work today. I had to press the emergency alarm and security came to get me out. I felt like such a dweeb.

2) I bought tickets to Puppetry of the Penis. I'm taking a friend, as Rich just would NOT go. (In his defense, would I go see Puppetry of the Pussy? Hell no.) (Though I did see the Vagina Monologues, but the difference here is that the actual vaginas were not doing the talking.)

Ok so I have just in these few sentences used every naughty googleable word possible. Oh wait, forgot one.....TITS.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Puppets of an unusual nature

I'm sure where you work you get those general "all office" emails, making announcements of a generic nature. New copy machine, Bob got promoted, there's a new HR person. You know, that sort of thing. Maybe you also get cultural announcements, about things happening in town or a play or something? An office gathering or party?

Today, at MY office, we got an announcement about the Puppetry of the Penis. It's playing at a local theatre.

Of course, and ironically, I could not click on the link as the office web filter blocked it as being obscene, but the "all office" email did send us pictures, so I guess that's ok......

Damn I love Europe.

And I really kind of want to go see the hell out of sock puppets any day.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007 Texas!

It's snowing in Texas! Which, basically, is not quite a miracle? But almost?

Badger posted about it, as did pretty much every other blogger I know in Austin. Some are loving it, others (most of the people I know who blog, actually) are going a bit stir crazy. I mean, it HAS been four days of no work or school for most of them (Monday having been MLK day in the US) and from what I hear, kids start to get antsy by about, oh, Saturday at 10am?

It's just so funny to me that Austin is colder than Oslo right now and will be for a couple of days! With more snow! And ice! So, y'all come on up to Oslo for a bit of warmth and sunshine, ok?

HA hahahahahahaha!!!!!!

Dammit. Spoke too soon. We are forecast for more snow tomorrow night. Well, we'll see. Maybe Austin can still beat us.

I still remember the snow of 1987, when I was in college, in Austin, living in the dorms. We all got lunch trays from the cafeteria and used them as sleds down the hill at the LBJ library. I remember that being a GREAT day. Honestly, I haven't sledded since then...guess I should do that this winter, huh?

The best thing about living somewhere that does not have winter weather is that when you DO have it, you make the most of it. Because you know it will be gone in a matter of hours and it won't happen again for years.


I think "variety" sounds better than "random shit cuz I really don't know what to write".

Anyhow. I'll just write about the day I had today.

I found out today when calculating my travel expenses, etc, for work that I've accidentally been riding the train every day this week with an expired month card. If the train cops had caught me I would have had a good fine to pay. I totally didn't realize my card was expired...I can't believe a whole month went that fast, but it did and I was riding the rails outlaw style for the last three days of it! I'm SUCH a rebel. Speaking of the train ride, there's this damned woman on the train in the mornings who stares at me non stop. Everyone tends to get on the same car on the same train in the mornings (creatures of routine) and she ends up in mine. And she JUST STARES. I really wish she'd quit it. Luckily she only rides for one stop (it's an express train) but it's unnerving to have someone stare at you quite that intensely for a 7 minute period. If she does it again tomorrow I am SO gonna make a face at her. That will probably make her stare more, though.

Things are hopping along at work. I've got some projects going that I have no idea how to achieve, including redoing a web page using software I've never seen before. Not to mention that I really don't know HOW to do a web page, but never mind, life is all about the lessons learned, right? Right. We got a new coffee maker on our floor, which doesn't seem like all that big a deal, until you SEE the coffee maker. It grinds the beans in the machine for each serving, gives you a choice of espresso or coffee right out of the machine, lets you set not only cup size but also coffee strength, and has a setting for how hot you want your milk. It's freaking AWESOME. I'm enthralled with it. I'm so hopped up on coffee every day now that I might have to restrain myself to two cups a day and then just hang around and watch other people make their coffee.....

The staring train lady was not on the ride home, thank god. How come the train home always takes twice as long than the train to work, even if it's the exact same route? I always wonder about that. It seems ENDLESS, while the morning one isn't even enough time for me to listen to one podcast....

After work I ran errands, as usual. It's not icy on the main sidewalks, but if you venture off, you will fall on your ass.

The grocery store had entrecote (basically rib eye steak) for 98 kroners a kilo, which is like, a bit less than $7 a lb., so I bought up a supply of it. That's is a SCREAMING good deal. I have to cut it into steak sized pieces myself, but for that price I am willing to put up with strangely sized steaks, yo'. They don't have food specials often here, but when they do they are really good. I am waiting for the chicken sale.....

Home now. Making Rich cut up one of the entrecotes for dinner. We will have it with Italian red wine and some asparagus. We are on a vegetable kick. Meaning that, I try to have at least three veggies with dinner. Tonight is asparagus, a salad and corn. And mushrooms. Ich liebe mushrooms.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Auntie Em Auntie Em It's a twister!

Jeez, y'all. We are having a windstorm and no lie. It snowed yesterday. A bit wet floppy snow. Now the wind is howling and the result of fast hard wind on snow is that the snow gets shaved down and compacted We've got wind gusts up to 60mph! Probably it's a good thing it's winter and the trees don't have leaves and there is not much stuff left outside to blow around, otherwise there would be alot more damage than we are getting.


What is also interesting is that the weather here has been oddly paralleling the weather in the States least, the Texas part of the States. Because El Nino? Affects the weather in Norway as well. It's all jet stream related. So y'all have been having a warm winter, as have we. And now you get an ice storm? Yep, check. In fact, this week it will be colder in Austin than it is here.

Welcome to Winter!

We've had a busy weekend. Friday we went to the pub for a beer, which in my case ended up being, like, 8, and then I decided to introduce some newbie Americans visiting here to aquavit. Even *I* knew that was a bad idea.
Anyhow, Rich ended up leaving the bar because he was tired and I sort of partied on for a while. I'd never been there without him and was curious what the "nightlife" at the bar is like late at night. (It's a fairly popular late night spot though I could never figure out why.) So I hung around with some friends who also were staying later and then I learned why the bar is popular: TOTAL pick up joint. Very flattering for the old ego, lemme tell you, as, being an old married lady, getting hit on in bars does not happen to me much because I'm usually with the man. And nothing dampens the ardor of someone trying to hit on you than a 6'7" husband glaring at them in a definite "buggger off" sort of way. But, it seems from my two experiences in bars this year when by myself (in London in August and on Friday) that I still have got something that is pick-upable. So, that made me feel good. I told the husband all about it and I don't think he is going to let me be at the bar without him anymore......

Then last night we went to Hanna's house for a drinks and games night. To say I was off my game is an understatement. Oy. My brain just would NOT work. So I was unfortunately not the life of the party. We had a nice time, even with my slug self. There was a lovely fire and good conversation. We girls DID kick some boy ass playing Pictionary, I swear we were almost psychic with the guessing and the communication. And it snowed on the way home, which was nice as it covered the ice and made walking alot easier. And it was beautiful, too. Never forget the beauty.

Today I am going to make some soup, recreating a recipe we had in Tallinn for vegetable soup with tiny little meatballs in it. Rich is watching some sci fi movie or other and I am about to curl back up with my book.

The wind still howls and pounds on the windows.

Friday, January 12, 2007

More pictures of Tallinn

We did manage to get some shots of Tallinn in daytime.....

This is the outside of Contrevento, a really REALLY good Italian place. I mean, REALLY good. I was like Meg Ryan in that scene in "When Harry Met Sally" when I was eating my steak. It was REALLY good. Rich, of course, preteneded he did not know who that moaning orgasmic woman was at his table, but once I made him taste the steak, he sort of got why I was so vocal. And the pasta did not suck either. The restaurant, by the way, is in St Katerine's Passage, this ancient alleyway by the old city walls that has become home to artists. The Artist's Guild is there and there is lots to look at and buy.

A monk who reminded me of Rasputin, walking down the street.

I got an email out of the blue from some folks who run an educational website. They want to use some of my photos as aids for teaching about cultural geography. I checked them out, they are on the up and up and it's a really big and interesting website, and I am flattered as now I am a professional (albeit unpaid) photographer!

More photos of Tallinn below, plus do check the bighead blog for some other ones involving either my or other's large craniums in beautiful settings.

tallinn winter sunset

tallinn winter sunset, originally uploaded by karlakp.

We caught the evening (well, 3:30 pm) sunset at just the right time. This is a view from Toompea Castle walls overlooking Tallinn and the Baltic.

me and two old queens

me and two old queens, originally uploaded by karlakp.

Well, it's actually one queen, but still....this is in Kadriorg Palace Museum, Tallinnn.

Church exterior in Toompea castle, Tallinn

I love the black and white and the starkness of the church and the trees in winter sunset. I think this is a Lutheran church. Toompea Castle sits on a bluff overlooking the rest of Old Tallinn.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

iTunes meme

Jaye made up this meme all by herself. I like it so I am doing it. Yes it's for iTunes but I bet if you use a different software you can use it too......tweak at will.

I don't tag anymore...but Dave, this sort of has you written all over it.

Open iTunes. Click the column header for "Play Count". What are the first five songs listed?
Black Sweat...Prince
Take Me To The Club...Mannequin
Word Up...Cameo

Click the column header for Last Played. What are the first 5 songs?
French Fries with Pepper...Morphine
Forbidden Love...Madonna
Faster than Light...Neil Finn
Fascination Street...Cure
Enjoy the Silence...Depeche mode

Click Party Shuffle. What are the first 5 songs?
Hypnotic Tango...My Mine (electronica from a dark wave compilation)
Throwing Shapes...Dirty Vegas
King Tide...Neil Finn
The other Side...Morphine
Oh La la...Goldfrapp

Click the column header Year. What are the first 5 songs from 1994?
Well, they are all from albums and show up in album order, so I will pick the first one from each album, how's that?

Supernaut...1000Homo DJ's (from the WaxTrax Black Box)
Body and Soul...Love and Rockets (Hot Trip to heaven)
Cuz It's Hot....Thrill Kill Kult
Closer to God (single) ...NIN (Downward Spiral)
Nobody's Fault but Mine...Page and Plant (No Quarter)

Click the column header My Rating. What are the first 5 songs?
I don't rate. Who's got time?

Finally, look at the bottom of your iTunes window. How many days of music do you have?
2.9 days.

BTW, if we look at the bottom of the Podcast page, I've got 6.8 days...I am podcast obsessed.

I brought my iPod speakers to work and it's certainly a nice touch to my office. I like to hear the podcasts in the background, without having to use the earbuds . I especially like listening to news from home, like from Austin, it's almost like being there. Except, of course, when they say it's like, 75 degrees outside and sunny, and I look out the window and it's dark and rainy here....
I've also brought in some smelly candles and some small bits of artwork that I like, and it feels homier in there now. Peole are actually coming into my office just to hang out, which is a complement? But it also drives me fucking NUTS because i actually have alot of work to do and I don't want to have to be rude and say, "Um, dude, don't you have any WORK to do? Because I sort of do and you are keeping me from it."
I;ve never been one to hang out at the office if I don't have work to do. I like to work, get shit done, and go home. I don't dawdle over lunch or anything like that. Work, get home. Home's more comfy and I can wear my jammies there.

Monday, January 08, 2007


Some pictures of beer drinking in Tallin...........

At the Beer House.
Big glass of yum.
Can I have this to go, please?
Beer as big as yo' face.
And Ye Olde Crapper....for when ye've had too much o' the brew.

Friday, January 05, 2007

Why was I the only one who noted this?

On our flight to Tallinn on Norwegian Air, every seat had a little advertisement stuck to the tray tables. It's a new ploy to make some money, which, hey, that's fine with me, but I wonder who vets these ads, because maybe, just maybe they should sort of edit them first for appropriate placement?

So, I get into my seat, see the ad and bust out laughing. It's an ad for a new album by Norwegian singer Morten Abel:

Yeah, the title of the album was "Some of Us Will Make It".

And they put this ad on a PLANE!? A plane that's VERY FULL? In front of EVERY SEAT?

I dunno about you, but I don't want just SOME of us to make it, I want ALL of us to make it because if we don't it's gonna be one damned uncomfortable flight.

Nobody else on the plane saw the irony of it. I pointed it out to this one girl, and she just said, "Yes, it is a new album by a famous Norwegian singer". And I'm all, "Uh, yeah, but don't you think the title is a bit strange to be on an ad in a plane?" and she just shrugged and said "It's a good record". She totally didn't get why I was sniggering and taking pictures.

Is it just me or is this really funny? I still giggle thinking about it.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Night shots of Tallinn

Since it gets dark early this time of year, we took alot of shots at night while we were in Tallinn. This was in addition, of course, to the drinking and eating.

My camera takes AMAZING night shots. I don't know why or how, but as long as I hold it still enough, it sort of does the rest. I love that.....

Anyhow, following this are some shots of Tallinn at night. The moon was half full, so it also makes an appearance. It was so gorgeous.

This is looking down a little side street into the main square of Tallinn. Behind the tree is the Town Hall.

The main square at night. There was a guy sitting under the tree, playing didgeridoo. It was a big didgeridoo, and the sound was deep, round, primal and sexy, yet also timeless. It bounced off the walls and shivered on my chest. It was incredible. I got chills. I should also mention that didgeridoo is one of my favorite musical instruments, I love the depth of the sound and the rythmic nature of it. How wierd to have a traditionally aboriginal sound being played in a town that probably never saw anyone from that part of the world until the early 20th century, but how cool, too.

dusk sky in tallinn

blue sky moon over steeple, originally uploaded by karlakp.

The sun was almost set and the moon was up. It rested on the church spire for a while before it continued its journey. I think it might have been tired. Tallinn is STUNNING in every way.

cloudy moon over tallinn square

cloudy moon over tallinn square, originally uploaded by karlakp.

I love the way the moon is playing in the clouds...

THAT was an evening wasted

I thought I would do that new Blogger Two new layout thing... you know where it will let you upgrade your layout and it's supposed to be "simpler"?

Yeah, it's so simple it takes away all your choice.

I mean, I'm no html guru or anything, in fact, I know bubkus, but at least I've managed to tweak a few things on my blog by trial and error. The new layout thingy is easy to use, but if you need to tweak, say, side bar size or something, it's pretty near impossible to do. Especially when, as what happened to me, your Haloscan Commenting fucks up your sidebar widths and so they disappear when you enable the comments. So, I am left with a choice of having comments using haloscan, which I like for commenting and with which I have a long history, or not having sidebar items. All because of a width problem that I CAN'T FIX BECAUSE THERE IS NOT THE FLEXIBILITY ANY MORE!!!!!!

Shit! So if you came by here today and it looked different, it's because it was. But then I had to revert back to the old style because I couldn't fix the comment problem and don't feel like spending another two hours on it. Not now.....not tonight.


Back to some more pics tomorrow.

****Another hour and a half later*****Gah! I think I've got it fixed. This was not my first choice of template, but at least all the bits seem to be working together......whaddya think? A little travel-y looking, no?

Monday, January 01, 2007

The Irish made me do it

Damn those Irish. They made me sing karaoke last night.

The people who live across the hall from us, she's Irish, he's Norwegian. Her family was visiting from Ireland (mother father brother and sister in law), and they were having a NYE party. With karaoke. We all know my feelings about's one of those no no's I always swear I won't do. Actually, though, it was pretty good karaoke, through a Playstation, so it was the original music and with the original video and you sang along with the singer, which totally helps you stay on target. AND it also scored you and you could competitively sing against another person. And it was 80's music. Which I like. Duh.....

Let's just say, this girl can sing a raunchy Roxanne. More a la "Moulin Rouge" than the Sting version. I made the Irish dance and holler, and was referred to as a "super star" and also as a "prime article". I think that last one is good.

It was fun. We blended our little NYE gathering with theirs and it became a good ol' drunk fest. We drank ALOT of champagne (some of which we bought in Tallinn, on another night when we were drunk, which explains why that one bottle of champagne was SO DAMNED expensive.....though it seemed reasonable at the time. It WAS good, though.) The fireworks were really wonderful, especially considering it was raining, sleeting and foggy. We ice skated on the deck for a bit in our shoes. Hey, we were drunk and it seemed a good idea at the time.

For our party I managed to pull together a fairly decent spread of munchies. This is made more impressive, to me, by the fact that we had not done any grocery shopping since before Christmas and no shops were open when we got back from Tallinn yesterday afternoon, so I basically had to create a party spread from whatever I had on hand. This turned out to be hummous with "toast points" (ok, so it was slightly stale bread that I toasted the hell out of in the oven), cheese cubes (diced cheese from the Gouda and other cheeses we had on hand), a 7 layer dip, variety of chips and nuts and chocolates and stuff, plus a fruit salad brought by Martin and Aime and a yummy plate of onion bahjis and chicken wings brought by Will and Mary. Plus Grant brought me a pint o' wee heavy from Scotland that I did not share with anyone and some amazing whiskey fudge, plus some Dalwhinnie scotch for Rich. It's always a good idea to be friends with someone from Scotland if you like Scotch whiskey or beer. The relationship is beneficial.

This morning there was the inevitable exchange of switched wine glasses from our neighbor's flat to ours, a gathering of misplaced clothing (jackets, sweaters, shoes, etc.) and a cheesy eggy bacony breakfast served to our two overnight guests, Martin and his daughter Aime, who, since the party was still going at 3am, decided to just crash here rather than face the cab ride home. They are brave souls, as we don't actually have guest facilities and so one got the floor and the other got the sofa. But at 3:30 am, who really cares WHERE they sleep as long as they do so......Aime and Martin left around 1pm.

It's now 2:30 and we are still in our jammies and have no intentions of changing out of them.

I'm recharging camera batteries, then will offload my pics from Tallinn and try to post some here today, the internet willing. It's been slow all day.....