Archive for the ‘Deep Thoughts’ Category

Mike, meet Mike

Friday, December 19th, 2008

I know a disproportional number of Mikes. Not too many as my close personal friends, but everyone (almost) at work, at the gym, and in the store seems to be named Mike. I usually have a pretty hard time remembering people’s names, but it makes things a lot easier when all you have to remember is one name. I even have a Mike at work who’s last name is Jackson. I try not to moonwalk too much when he’s around.

So, if you run into a guy you don’t know and strike up a conversation, just call him Mike and watch how he lights up, in total disbelief, surprised that you knew his name.

Candy raccoon?

Tuesday, December 16th, 2008

Each year on the 13th of December Sweden celebrates Saint Lucia day. It’s usually celebrated by a procession and singing of Swedish Christmas carols the morning and heavy drinking at night. I used to be a diligent participant of both, but have in recent years only attended the more child friendly singing event.

For the second year in a row we’ve had a Lucia procession at our local IKEA with the Swedish school that our kids attend, so they can learn and enjoy some of the Swedish traditions that I grew up with. All people that are at least mildly familiar with this tradition know that the procession consists of: One Lucia wearing a crown of lights on her head and then a bunch of tärnor (girls dressed in white, just like the lucia but without the crown of lights), gigngerbread men, stjärngossar (directly translated as star boys, dressed in white with white cone hats), and elfs. And that’s it. There are most definitely no Candy Raccoons.


Comedic genius

Thursday, December 11th, 2008

I feel like a bad father. See, my son, thinks he’s really funny. And to be brutally honest, most of the time, he’s not. I’m not really sure why. It could be his potty humor, or the fact he keeps making weird noises and expecting me to drop to the floor laughing. Usually, I just look at him, with an emotionless face, thinking: Is that all you’ve got?! And I feel bad, because I really want him to be funny, and it hurts me to see him fail so miserably.

I also don’t want to encourage him too much. At least not the unfunny, juvenile material of his repertoire. Once in a while however, something funny escapes him. We laugh. Sometimes even a lot. And knowing that he’d penetrated our hard exterior crust of coldheartedness, he fires off a cascade of backup jokes, that once again fall flat.

I admire his persistence.


The Imperial coolness factor

Friday, November 28th, 2008

Calm down, I’m not talking about Star Wars. I’m talking about the Imperial units.

Like most people that moved to the US I have the  utmost hatred for the Imperial units. It’s beyond me that this system is still being used by any civilized country on the planet. Did you know that there are about 3 noses to an armpit? Yards, feet, elbows, whatever. It makes no sense.  Ask anyone on the street, citizen or alien, and they won’t be able to tell you how many yards to a mile (1760, and I had to look it up).

I’ve actually had people here ask me how many meters to a kilometer. Are you kidding me?! Sorry, the conversions are just killing me. Miles/gallon to lit/mil, sqft to m². I’ve had several home improvement project where I’ve had to measure stuff, and had I not been extremely careful about what I say around my kids, they would have been damaged for all eternity (Dad, where the f*#$& are you? Can you come and read this f*#$& book to me?).


Going to concert, feeling old

Wednesday, November 26th, 2008

Yesterday I went to a concert at a local venue close to where I live. My good friend suggested I should see this band called Wintersleep that he really likes, so I thought I’d stop by and check it out. I prepped hardcore by listening to their latest album on repeat about 10 times, making sure I could sing along, or at least recognize some of the songs.

Finally, after work, I was somewhat pumped. I got to the place way ahead of time, not really knowing when Wintersleep was going to play and as it turned out they were the opening act, before two other bands. Excellent! There would be no need to stick around if the other bands happened to suck.


Price of gas

Saturday, November 22nd, 2008

We do a lot of driving here in the US, and in the last couple of months, as most of you know, the price of gas has plummeted. Probably not as much in Europe as it has over here due to the dollar having gained in value against other currencies lately, but I figured it out, and it has fallen about 55% or so from when it was at its peak. Even though it’s not going to stay this low for long, I’m enjoying not spending a fortune at the pump these days.

The downside of this is of course, that more people might feel that the renewable energy issue isn’t as critical anymore… I don’t know who those people are, but I’m sure they exist. In Alaska maybe?

Anyway, that was my deep thought for the day.

A little bit of the good ol’ crazy

Monday, November 3rd, 2008

Election is tomorrow. Finally. What we also vote for here in the US besides the candidate for the presidency and representatives for congress are different Propositions. Propositions are basically issues that have gained enough support publicly, but not received any attention by various politicians in power. In any case, it’s pretty much the closest for of direct democracy we have here in the US. They get put on the ballot and voted on.

The proposition that has, by far, gained the most attention is Proposition 8. A ‘yes‘ on 8 would mean a ban on gay marriage that would be written into the Constitution and a ‘no‘ would leave things as is. Meaning that gay marriage would continue to be allowed and recognized under California law.


Kill all the trees

Monday, October 20th, 2008

I’m a little frustrated right now. Everyone is used to paying bills, but for some unexplained reason, bills in this country contain an ungodly amount of crap.  People not living in this country might not know what I’m talking about.

A normal, let’s say, phone bill, in Sweden contains: the phone bill. The end.

A normail phone bill in the US contains: the phone bill, 1 envelope (since a lot of people still use checks to pay bills, so they need an envelope to put the check and the bill in to send back to the phone company), some advertisement letting you know about how absolutely wonderful this phone company is and possibly some more advertisement about some other deal explaining how you can call your loved ones in Burundi for only $2 a minute.


The Octobox

Wednesday, October 15th, 2008

Politics for me is something of a love/hate thing. I really want the election to be over, but at the same time, it’s fodder for so much bullshit, some of it occasionally amusing. Especially news. Most of the people don’t know what they’re talking about anyway, just repeating other people’s opinions and talking points (just like me actually), but somehow they end up on the news expressing those opinions, talking and shouting over each other.

That’s why I love shows like The Daily Show, that calls people out on their bullshit. Below is a clip where one of the news channels had eight people, in eight different boxes on the screen at the same time, hence the name Octobox (at least that’s what The Daily Show calls it). They have since aired a newscast with 10 people simultaneously. Where does it end and how is this useful to me as a viewer when all I hear is noise? Maybe I’m just particularly bad at multitasking, but I usually understand best when listening to one person talking at a time.


Election rambles

Friday, September 26th, 2008

It’s hard not being sucked into this when you live in the US. It’s everywhere. TV, internet, sings, phone calls. You name it. I’m of course talking about the presidential race. Ideally, I would like to go to sleep and wake up when everything’s over. Let me know who won, and that’s it.

For us living in this country, we’ve been exposed to this circus for over a year now. I’m tired of it. If someone could make it stop, that would be great. Right now, if possible.