Wednesday, 30 April 2008

Fashion?: The Sequel

Dear friends and other readers (who are of course also friends).
I have been surfing around the blog world for a while now, and i am always surprised by how many good blogs are out there. It seems though, that the ones i like the most are always picture blogs, and most often fashion picture blogs. so, considering I cannot contribute anything of my own wardrobe to that cause of looking good and being well dressed, I will contribute to the world of fashion blogging with some pictures i took of my personal fashion guru, David (well known for uttering frases such as "I love animals, but I love fur more' and 'isn't this just sooo equestrian chic?' in a ringing Northern Irish accent):

Sunday, 27 April 2008

Sisters in arms

When you finally sit down to write a blog post to your dear friends, and the world, it is quite disconcerting to discover that you do not have an issue that you are truly eager to put out there. I am apologetic that I’ve been a lousy contributor to our cyber community. I have been thinking that I should write around the issue of the Olympics in Beijing, from my little Amnesty point of view. But then I thought the media covered that in such depth, that I didn’t feel like it after all. And then there are all sorts of issues that you think you could say a word or two about, but no. Well, the truth is that I am not entirely sober in this authoristic moment (world spelling does not approve of “authoristic” but I like it. What do you think?).

My parents are visiting in Tromsø this week. They both lived here in the seventies. 70’s! Tromsø is actually where my parents met each other, and then got engaged and moved to Mandal (my father’s home town. This night he proclaimed the seven reasons why he left Tromsø for Mandal). So, in the occasion of visiting me, my parents are living with their old friends from the days back then. This night, and then night before, we had dinner and wines with these old friends, and I got a deeper acquaintance with my parents youth-life. What comes forth (which I already know) is that my parents were so politically engaged. And so engaged in general! And while sitting there as the little child and bystander (who is about the same age as the one they are reminiscing about), I feel like a vital potential hardly exhausted. Is this because my youth is not taking place in the 60’s and 70’s, or is this because this generation/individual (me!) is dull? I want to be out there on the parole. But can I do better than for example engage in Amnesty international, when the political parties are more and more “catch-all” parties as the political scientist like to call them? I guess I want a discussion going back to the broad lines of how we can make a contribution to changw this ever worsening world (outside from doing our recycling, fair-trade ++ micro scale efforts)! Shall we go political comrades?

Sunday, 20 April 2008

Pimp My Blog!

Ok, so it might just be that I am suffering from severe procrastination syndrome, but what better to do in such a situation than revamping the blog!?

Hit me with your appraisal or hatred, I shall try and accommodate for everyone's opinion; this is after all the Democratic Republic of the World (And Other Issues).

Much love.


today i read an article on about the young, up and coming fashion bloggers of norway, and i must admit i was a little tempted by the idea of starting a fashion blog. maybe a nicely sarcastic one like, or just a nice little thing of inspirations. so i looked through my photos to see if this was feasible.

clearly not:

Thursday, 17 April 2008

Bad Music

So, as you all may know by now, on Saturday my poor little computer had a bit of a catastrophe (no one knows why!) and when it finally woke up in the hospital, it couldn't remember shit. As in, there's not a note of music in my iTunes library anymore. Therefore, I have been using the "Shared Library" dealio that iTunes have, and I have discovered that I have really truly disgusting taste in music. Like really really terrible, I would never own this crap awful (actually I think I used to own some of it); I LOVE IT!!

Highlights include:
1. Gasolina (Daddy Yankee)
2. Dhoom Machale (?)
3. Wonderwall (Oasis)
4. All the Things She Said (Tatu)
5. Girl's Not Grey (AFI)
6. Does your Mother Know? (ABBA)
7. Sk8er Boi (Avril Lavigne)

What are your favorite awful songs?

Tuesday, 15 April 2008

the new oslo opera house

dear friends, now that we have discussed issues of both smell and olympic torch relays, i feel it is time for me to get into my field and discuss a little architecture.

the occasion is the opening of the new opera house in oslo, designed by norwegian architects snohetta (picture from saturday's opening galla)

following the opening of this massive new opera house comes, of course, much debate about whether we need an opera house, whether everybody should pay for the opera house (it is financed through taxes and cost approximately 4 billion norwegian kroner, or approx. 800 million dollars.) etc.

it is built in the harbour area of bjorvika in oslo, in front of the central station (when seen from the sea), and takes on the shape of an iceberg rising from the water. this whole area is one that is under development at the moment (anthony is doing his thesis project on the site right next to it, designing a new ferry terminal and hotel). i find it quite astonishing that, from what i can deduce from the debate pages on, nobody seems to understand the importance of this building in terms of regenerating this area.

to enlighten you a bit more, the area around the central station has always been a major hang out spot for the drug addicts and hookers of oslo (the drug addicts have moved elsewhere after a government initiative was implemented a while back, but the hookers were definitely lined up two weeks ago when me and anthony went for an evening walk down there) and whereas most of the motorways in oslo are underground in tunnels, at this tricky place the road comes back up from the tunnel and separates the whole harbour area from the rest of the city.

in order to make the opera house work they have built a pedestrian bridge over this motorway, connecting the opera to the central station.

having studied issues like this in my "built environment" lectures, i found it incredibly interesting when anthony took me down there a couple of weeks ago. the whole area is rather cut off from the rest of the city, which was clear to me because it took an englishman doing his thesis to drag me down there (i had never been before, and i am from there. uhoh.)
i have since developed a burning interest in the development of the harbour area, because it is one where nothing has been done for years and years and there is so much land which has been left derelict because of this incredibly disruptive motorway (and also the train lines from oslo central).
i am very excited to learn from anthony that work has already started on building a tunnel for this road to go in. there is also a project called the "barcode" which will be a business park of high rise buildings organized in a "barcode" way behind the opera house. the first one has already been built and i happen to think it is an excellent building.

so i guess my concern is that people only seem to think of this as a building which has cost way too much money for everyone that is not going to use it (the common man doesn't go to the opera etc, but in fact let's say we have 4 million people in norway, so if you do the maths the opera will, if it stands for 100 years, cost each of us about 4 kroner pr year. which after all is pretty much the price of half a pack of bubblegum), but i think most people fail to see the real point of this. not only is it the first time in YEARS that a major new cultural building has been erected in oslo (i believe the last one was the national theatre in 1899), but it is also oslo's very first landmark building which will undoubtedly speed up the process of the urban renewal of oslo's harbour which it so badly needs.

also, i have real doubts that it will only be used for opera - rock concerts are already scheduled.
also, (again) i've already immensely enjoyed this building simply by walking around it and taking it in. also, the installation in the lobby by olafur eliasson is VERY nice.

Thursday, 10 April 2008

On a lighter note...

One thing I have been struggling with recently is the concept of perfume. My roommate feels the need to spray it all over herself, and it is a very sweet and jarring smell to wake up to. I don't quite understand why she wishes to change the way she smells, because she bathes regularly and has pretty good hygiene habits, but I guess that's her business and none of mine.

I had attributed it earlier to the fact that my roommate is kind of a "fashion diva," by which I mean she has about twenty pairs of shoes in a nice straight line under her bed, and a cacophony of shiny, flimsy material in her closet. It's pretty admirable the way she puts herself together; it kind of makes me feel like a hobo.

But it turns out that this smell-changing phenomenon of changing one's natural smell doesn't stop at my roommate, and that's why I've decided to write about it. The other day I was cramming myself into a crowded elevator (as usual, for that is the way of NYU) on my way to class when a wall of musky cologne seemed to wash over me. This was a boy! And he did not seem like a "fashion diva" at all. Intriguing...

So, let us delve into the concept of changing one's scent! As I was saying, it's something I don't quite understand. I mean, I use deodorant, but other than that I don't really smell like anything, at least not anything I can detect. I've tended to quite like the unadulterated smell of the boys I've dated (maybe it has something to do with why we dated?), and been off-put by boys wearing perfume. We're animals, after all, and we learn a lot about each other and our potential compatibility from the way we smell.

That's my side of the story, anyway. I think I need to interview my roommate to get the other side of the story, because if I remember correctly, neither of you guys alters your smell, either. Readers? Scientists?

Monday, 7 April 2008


so, after huge protests in london yesterday, the olympic torch relay has come to a finish in paris, with the torch actually being extinguished and transported though the streets on a bus rather than by foot.

i was sat in my bed yesterday, watching the bbc news from under my array of green, yellow, blue, red and white flags, following the torch on its way from a modest ceremony at some stadium to the streets to stop by gordon brown back to the streets and finally back into some other stadium. i am really torn about this. is it right for the olympics, the ultimate arena for peaceful (though rather sweaty) interaction between nations, to become the ground for political conflict? or is that just what the olympics should be; a way of highlighting relevant issues and pushing for change?

i am excited that the whole world seems to be engaged in this issue (except for inhabitants of beijing, it seems, answering with questionmark-like faces when asked by a bbc reporter yesterday about the protests in london) but also i am sad that the olympics have become an arena for world politics rather than sport.

as an avid olympics fan, who at 11 woke up in the middle of the night for two weeks in february 1998 to catch the action in nagano, i remember when the torch relay passed my house in 1994, how excited i was, and how proud we all were to organize the olympics. lucky for us our government was not torturing and depriving the lapps of their culture at the time.

thank god for the deserved publicity the tibetans struggle is getting.
i'm just upset it took the flame of the olympic torch with it.