Sunday, December 31, 2006

Happy New Year, asshats

Saturday, December 30, 2006

The first outing

Another big day for freedom and democracy

I wasn't a big fan of Saddam Hussein's or anything. But death by hanging? In the name of what values, exactly? And when, oh when, will international disputes be resolved by presidential sabre duels?

"They said this mystery never shall cease: The priest promotes war, and the soldier peace."
William Blake

Friday, December 29, 2006

I never thought this day would come

But it has: I am finally out of adhesive tape. I have no tape in my possession. No scotch tape, no insulating tape, no masking tape, no gaffer tape. I am out of tape.

Me of all persons. Who would have thought? Not me, that’s for sure. Well, there’s a bit left on that one roll, but it’s not a lot. I better go out and buy some more tomorrow.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Falk


The maternity ward at Sykeland Hønsehus was built in 1926. They squeezed it in right between the church and the graveyard. It seemed like a good idea to keep the circle of life as tight as possible.


We check in at a quarter to eleven and Monica the midwife tells us this may take awhile. From the cemetery below, hundreds of candles flicker in the wind; a stark reminder of the seriousness of the enterprise. Funny how these moments in life always bring out the... Hey, isn't that oxygen tank in the parking lot a bit of a fire hazard?!


Suddenly everything happens very quickly, and an hour and a half later we have a son.


Great. Another mouth to feed.


Let's see what we've caught here: Yes, it's definitely an ill-tempered boy.


Let's get him out of that cosy aquarium and into the bed.


Sweet Jesus, he takes up a lot of room. Move over, will you?


Let's have a closer look... OH MY GOD HE'S A PIRATE!!!


But look how happy he makes us!
(I stole this picture from my dad.)


We'll name him Falk. Let's wrap him in the blanket that Sara knitted (or knat, or whatever) and take him back to HQ so he can stay up all night drinking, just like his parents.


And another thing: Now that I have a spare, I can finally realize my long-time ambition and sell this delinquent to the gypsies.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

A new citizen of Finnmärk is born!

On boxing day, 23 minutes after midnight, Sara gave birth to a healthy boy. Two weeks ahead of schedule, he has ten fingers, ten toes, dark hair, a match weight of 2860 g, and is 50 cm long. Mother and child are well.

Monday, December 25, 2006

Let the effacement commence

It's started. I'm waiting and listening to sad music, but I feel calm and happy.

Lock up your daughters



Or maybe I'll lock up my son.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

The Fly


Little Fly,
Thy summer's play
My thoughtless hand
Has brushed away.


Am not I
A fly like thee?


Or art not thou
A man like me?


For I dance,
And drink, and sing,
Till some blind hand
Shall brush my wing.


If thought is life
And strength and breath,
And the want
Of thought is death;


Then am I
A happy fly.
If I live,
Or if I die.

William Blake

Saturday, December 23, 2006

OMG WTF

We just won a completely undeserved Claws Award! It'll look great on the mantelpiece next to the Nobel peace prize, the Academy Award and the Iron Cross.

We would like to thank the good people over at Swedish Erotica, makers of the Temptress Tiger, without whom none of this would have been possible.

Homosexuals condemn papal marriage

Homosexuals all over the world condemn the Vatican, under the new leadership of Pope Benedict XVI, for passing a controversial Christmas bull sanctioning papal marriage.

The solemn decree, which was issued on Friday from the offices of the Papal Chancery (registrum bullarum), also allows papal couples to adopt.

This new development is seen as a dramatic step in the rapid secularisation of what was once one of the most devoutly unmarried offices in Europe.

The bull makes Pope Benedict XVI the first pope to be able to marry since Adrian II, pope from 867 to 872. The last papal marriage ended badly when the wife and daughter of Adrian II were carried off and assassinated by Eleutherius, Anastasius the librarian's brother.

Since that time only the Netherlands have approved papal marriage, but due to the relative lack of Dutch popes this has hardly been viewed as controversial.

Rehnquist P. Winterbottom, a spokesperson for the gay community, described the new bull as profoundly iniquitous. He said gay and lesbian Catholics should be prepared to renounce their sexuality rather than co-operate with the Vatican on this issue.

Interviewed in the Italian newspaper Corriere de la Sera, Winterbottom said homosexuals worldwide were making an urgent call for freedom of conscience for Roman Catholics and appealing to them to resist the bull.

He said every profession linked with implementing papal marriage should oppose it, even if it meant losing their jobs.

Winterbottom also insisted that just because something was made a papal bull it did not make it right.

Pope Benedict XVI took office in April 2005, making it clear he intended to make the Vatican a secular state and remove what he called "the Roman Catholic Church's undeniable backwardness on the issue of papal celibacy".

There are likely to be further tensions with the gay community as the Pope has made it clear he intends to streamline papal divorce law and even to relax the conditions placed on papal abortion.

The Pope also stated, in a press briefing Friday, his intention to marry the head of the Vatican's Pontifical Council on the Family, Cardinal Alfonso Lopez Trujillo, and adopt an African choirboy named M’butu.

When asked what title Cardinal Trujillo would assume upon their marriage, Pope Benedict XVI answered simply: "I’m the Pope. Alfonso can be the Mome."

Friday, December 22, 2006

"Evgenij, does my armpit look OK to you?"

It was an ordinary day in the Bulgarian disco garage. Svetlana was trying to do her stiletto aerobics, but she just couldn't get into it. She kept thinking about the eye operation.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

No respect

Monday, December 18, 2006

Something is fishy in the city of Lüleå

Anarchy and chaos reign in Scandamanavia. Revolution is in the air. The Copenhagen riots have spread even as far as peaceful Lüleå. This article from Danish newspaper Politiken tells the harrowing tale of vandalism, defacement of public buildings and, dare I say it, terrorism.

The Danish Consulate in Lüleå has been terrorized by fundamentalists with probable links to a dangerous teenage youth centre in Copenhagen.

As Vice Consul Bente Frikorps Dahl explains: "This is terribly annoying. It will have no significant impact. I can’t understand why they want to waste their time by walking all the way up here to spray some paint on our house."

She points to the fact that the Danish Consulate is located a 25 minutes walk from the city centre.

But wait a minute: If we measure the exact distance from the Danish Consulate to, say, the Lüleå train station (as I did late last night when I happened to be passing by), we find it to be exactly 1051m - which translates to roughly a kilometre in layman’s terms. This means the Vice Consul takes 25 minutes to walk a distance that would take any other person approximately 12 minutes. No one in the diplomatic corps could be so hopelessly out of shape! What is she hiding?


Let’s dig a little deeper. The Vice Consul goes on to say that she will make a formal complaint to the Lüleå police first thing after lunch: "There's not much else we can do. Other than paint it over. Which we will, as soon as we can get a hold of the painter."

We ask you: How hard can it be to get a hold of a painter? Something smells fishy here.

When we investigate further, the plot instantly thickens into a veritable Lüleå fish soup. No one witnessed the vandals, and yet according to the Vice Consul they were "definitely from Lüleå."

How can she be so sure? The SHÄDY ÄCRES preliminary investigation points in another and more sinister direction. This crazy gang has obviously been infiltrated by left wing rabble, as you can plainly see by the psychedelic art.

From such fanatics, this type of wild sabotage is exactly what you would expect. This whole thing could easily be a clever ploy to create interest in their warped agenda. In short, they had the motive and the opportunity.

We make no allegations. You be the judge.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Så blev det alligevel jul...

...i den gamle købmandsgård.

Stop what you're doing - this just in!

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Suttonhoo has a date with destiny

So it seemed like a good idea, for some reason, to tell you your future. Now that I have the cards out and everything, I must confess I’m beginning to have my doubts about the soundness of the undertaking. But that’s the way I always feel before a reading, so let’s dismiss those doubts altogether and proceed in good cheer. I am, after all, no psychic. I’m just a hardcore rationalist who also for some reason happens to be a Tarot ace. Go figure.

Since I’m broadcasting this (as always by means of a huge internet antenna made out of empty beer cans and string) I must first of all explain to everyone else that I don’t know Suttonhoo from Adam, and since I make no claim to this being anything other than a party trick, I shouldn’t technically have any reservations about making it public. But then anyone with any kind of experience with the Tarot, even a last ditch rationalist like myself, knows that for some reason or other this stuff works. In the hands of a reader with even a little practice, the cards will unexpectedly spring to life and start spilling the beans. So I may hold back just a little. Anyway, it’s just a pastime and I know you can take it.


Aesthetics are the chief component in all magic, and divination is no exception. I use the Ryder-Waite deck, simply because I find it the most beautiful, and therefore the most powerful. To me it is not a beginners’ deck, or a bland, generic deck as some would see it. As far as I’m concerned it is the only deck there is. I keep the cards in an empty toffee tin, and like to spread them on a piece of black cloth. Today I will be using a fine Vietnamese silk kerchief of Sara’s that she has graciously rented out to me for a small fee.

I never pick a Significator card, as some do, to represent the questioner. But should I have to choose one it would probably be the Page of Cups. You strike me as a Page of Cups kind of girl. I will not be asking about anything specific, since I know next to nothing about the particulars of your life, but rather seek a very broad and general reading.

Here we go.

As soon as I start shuffling the deck a severe hailstorm erupts outside, without warning, as if on cue. I am not making this up. Car alarms go off all over the place and the electric lights flicker. Such occurrences are not unusual, and even though I can easily dismiss them as coincidence, they are part of why I have my reservations about using the cards at all. It always freaks me out when my paradigm is challenged by the undeniable fact that I possess strange mystical powers. You will soon discover the truth of this.

I will not dwell on my shuffling method, other than to say I try to avoid reversing the cards. Once I know the cards are shuffled just right I cut the deck in three stacks with my left hand and spread them. When I consult the cards for myself I like to spread them face down, turning them one by one, but for this reading I will spread the cards face up. I will use the Queen of Avalon spread for you.


The Queen of Avalon spread - named after the great Morgan le Fay, a witch close in blood to King Arthur, who was according to legend the ruler and patron (dominatrix atque patrona) of those parts - is a thirteen card version of the well known Celtic Cross spread. It was taught to me many years ago in Vienna by an old, one-eyed gypsy that I just made up.

The spread is divided into five parts:
1: The Cradle: This cluster of three cards tells about your life in general and the situation at hand.
2: The Floor and the Crown: This two card axis offers suggestions about the foundations and possibilities of the situation at hand.
3: What came before and what lies ahead: This two card axis tells about your past and your future (duh).
4: The House, the Ghost and the Enemy: This streak of three cards reveals your surroundings, your hopes and fears, and the forces that oppose you.
5: The Fan: These three cards hint at one or more possible outcomes.

Are you ready? OK. These are your cards:


MY READING
A few general tendencies:
The cards are evenly distributed between the suits, with a slight majority of Cups, which supports my initial intuition about you. It also points to a reading related to emotional issues, love and family. There are three Major Arcana cards in the spread, a nice, average number, which would indicate that you have your own destiny firm in hand. An overweight of Major Arcana cards in a spread tend to be a sign that "the answer is out of the questioner’s hands", so to speak. Also, you’ve got a couple of Aces, which would be pretty good if we were playing poker.

The Cradle
The Questioner: The Knight of Cups.
See? This is why I never pick a Significator card. As I said, I would have chosen the page of cups, but then the cards seem to know you better than I do. You are a dreamer, obviously. A poetic, emotional girl, highly cultured, but perhaps a bit on the lazy side. Lately you may have gotten yourself temporarily involved in some sort of emotional entanglement.

What covers it: The Wheel of Fortune.
The crux of the biscuit: Things have been set in motion, huge things, and now events in your life suddenly seem to whirl beyond your control. This seems to be a contradiction, but then you may have underestimated your own influence - I get a strong feeling you’ve started all this yourself. I sense that you are standing on the brink of a great change in your life, but that you are somehow blind to it. All is chaos, and yet all is quiet around you. You are at the eye of the storm.

What crosses it: Eight of Swords.
You are under strong, direct pressure from your immediate surroundings on this issue. You are censored and bound by severe, almost crippling restrictions. You have to make a decision. This is very important. You have to act now, or the knot will tighten.

The Floor and the Crown
The Floor: Seven of Cups.
What lies at the root? Choices, possibilities, daydreams, illusions… I see you running through the fenland at dusk, chasing the faint glow of a lamp between the trees. The ground is wet and slippery beneath your feet. The sun is setting. You must find a way out of the marsh or perish. This card supports the impression that you have some sort of vital choice to make, and soon, before the ground gives way underneath your feet.

The Crown: The World.
And you have been thinking about making some kind of drastic change in your life. If push comes to shove it could mean the end of a cycle for you, for better or for worse. You could free yourself from the restrictions than presently bind you. You could move somewhere else and start over. Well, maybe not. But you know what I mean.

What came before and what lies ahead
What came before: Seven of Swords.
This is such an annoying card because it carries a contradictory meaning. Are you the sneaky guy in the fur hat stealing away with his enemies’ swords on the eve of battle, or is it the other way around? One reading could be that sometime in the past you ran off with someone else’s lover, and then it didn’t work out. But then it could also very well be the other way around. Or you could have a penchant for fur hats.

What lies ahead: The King of Cups.
In the near future you have a date with this guy. Probably a fair man, a bit older than you. He is a man of the world, friendly, creative, used to responsibility, used to getting his way – if not by force then by stratagem. Shrewd, I think is the word. Maybe this clever, manipulative side to him is the reason why he is so highly respected, and yet not loved by many. Maybe he was the same one we saw stealing the seven swords, he just got a little better at it. Maybe you see something in him that I don’t. Anyways, you have a date with him soon.

The House, the Ghost and the Enemy
The House: The Lovers.
This confirms my suspicion. You’re obviously having an affair. Don’t try to deny it.

The Ghost: The Queen of Wands.
You’re afraid of this dark, practical woman, maybe because you’re sleeping with her husband. Or it could be your mother, that would make sense. God knows I’m afraid of mine. No, I’m not really getting anything solid on this one, so I’m going to have to pass. She’s a generous, popular sort of woman, loves nature and takes great pride in her home. Maybe a relative. For some reason your darkest fears are connected to her.

The Enemy: The Ace of Cups.
I’m sorry to be the one to tell you this, but you might be pregnant. Or you want to be pregnant, but you’re not. Either way it’s some kind of bummer connected to fertility. There may be a risk to your health involved.

The Fan
First Leaf: Nine of Swords.
One possible outcome of your sordid affair is complete and utter ruin. Disappointment. Regret. Depression. Loss. Suffering. Scandal. I’m not going to lie to you; this is not a nice card. It has darker connotations still, but I don’t want to scare you. There could be some really dark days ahead, very soon.

Second Leaf: Four of Wands.
On the other hand, you could run off and marry your secret lover, the sword thief. That would be nice. See how the people in the card are dancing and waving bouquets of flowers in the air? That could be you on a tropical island.

Third Leaf: Ace of Pentacles.
Plus you have some money coming, maybe not in the immediate future, but pretty soon. That’s good, right? And not just the quick and easy kind: The foundations of real economic security. You will endeavour to make a material approach to spiritual matters, through the appreciation of all the good and beautiful things in life.

That concludes my reading. Now you know why they call me "the Oracle of Lüleå".

Friday, December 15, 2006

Deck the halls with machine gun fire


Yes, it's that time of year again.


A time to spend with your loved ones.


A time to cherish with your family.


Some have traveled far and wide to spend this magical time with you.


What will Santa and his little helpers bring this year?


Maybe a new bicycle?


Or a nice, friendly pet?


But let's never forget what it's really about.


Tradition. Heritage. Rituals that bind us together as a community.


Dare I say it? Love.

Happy, Merry Christmas from all of us here at SHÄDY ÄCRES! We love you like a retarded cousin. Now get lost.