Monday, 31 December 2012

Looking Both Ways (A Recap)

And so we're here again. Tomorrow I can proudly wear my imaginary "I survived the Mayan Apocalypse, Twice!" t-shirt and make fun of people. Tomorrow I will officially — and unofficially I might add — been without smoking for exactly 100 days. Which mean I — or We — have spent roughly £544 on other stuff. I also celebrated my 300th post a few posts ago, but I decided — I forgot, okay? — not to make a big deal — no one really cares but me — about it. Tomorrow, it will stop being 2012 — for those of us using the Gregorian Calendar at least — and start being 2013.

So sit down, this is going to be a long one.

The Bechdel Test

You there! Yes… you. Go, donate! Donate now! Next year I am going to write more about why we all should all care about this. Because you should. Feministfrequency.com is pretty awesome and very, very needed.


Sunday, 30 December 2012

A Christmas In Pictures

Since I talked about posting pictures of my Christmas I decided to create a new set on Flickr. So, here you go. Enjoy the embedded slide show after the jump.

Saturday, 29 December 2012

The Siegel-a-thon Continues

After having watched "The Five-Year Engagement" we are now going to continue the Jason Siegel-a-thon with "Jeff, Who Lives At Home". I like Jason Siegel. He does good stuff.

The Festering Turd That Is Sylvia Browne

I'm an agnostic. I use to think that I was an atheist but as it turns out I simply don't "not believe" any more than I "believe" so I have realised that the closest approximation — and it's a very close one — is agnosticism. I acknowledge the possibility that there are deities, one or even many for that matter but until science discovers a way to measure their existence or the existence of matter reacting to those deities I can't know for sure. Believing fairy tales is for suckers. As far as I'm concerned you either know something or you don't. But that is of course what I think and as such you are free to think otherwise… and as long as you keep your stupid beliefs to yourself, so will I. Alternatively you can always write a lengthy post about how "we can't know how old the earth is" and that "creationism is just as valid as science". And I promise that I won't read it.

Five Gold Rings

This post title makes no sense without the previous post title. And the only reason I point that out is because some time, in the not so distant future, someone might find this post and they might wonder "What the fuck?!" this ppost relates to "The Twelve Days of Christmas" -song. Rest assured. It doesn't. But if I've kept you so far here's a link to the lyrics… bye.

Now, that we finally got rid of those people, let's get real. And when I say real, I don't actually mean real "real", I mean I'm going to tell you what I ate for Christmas real.

Chicken. A nicely sized 1.5 kg chicken roasted in an oven, with spices. The usual spices like pepper, salt and olive oil. Oh, and also raisins (or sultanas as some might call it). It was actually pretty good although a bit weird. Then we had Christmas pudding, which is well… sweet and "no thank you". We had Holly as decorations for the table. We also kept Finlandsvenska traditioner alive like watching Kalle Anka (which is actually a Nordic tradition, but it is one that has always been and important tradition for the Swedish speaking people of Finland) and the giving of Christmas presents on Christmas Eve.

We also had gingerbread cookies that I personally made because, well… gingerbread cookies with actually ginger in them is pretty weird to me. Our gingerbread cookies don't have that. They do have pepper though, which seems to be a spice that isn't quite as common here. At least not the fun and unexpected places.

We also had Swedish meatballs. I say Swedish because that's what it said on the packaging but it could've just as well been Scandinavian meatballs. Good though.

So, in the end… what we basically did was, take a chicken, stuff it with English stuff and eat it one day before Christmas (on the Eve of Christmas) instead of the day. Then we just continued celebrating how best we pleased, regardless of the consequences.

Counting down to New Year Eve.

Which we're obviously going to mix-and-match as well.

Friday, 28 December 2012

And a Partridge in a Pear Tree

So I have celebrated an English Christmas in England — the "in England" being a fairly obvious part — and apparently the experiences I have had so far are not extra-ordinary by any measures. Which is to say, I'm not special in any way. Everything I have experiences so far is not, and I repeat, not special in any way. But coincidently, this is one of those occasions when I don't mind, not being special.

The "And English" being a less obvious part. Why, you might ask? Because, the Christmas we celebrate — although not vastly different from theirs— is one of differences worth mentioning. None more apparent than by visiting English pubs and talking to people that have… simply lived here for… well.… 60+ years. The have already had the pleasure of having the experiences that of most us inevitable seek to replicate, regardless of not knowing it. Their experiences are honest. To the point. And without the guilt of overcompensation for the past.

And whilst I suppose a part of me should assume that they're lying — because I'm Finnish and distrustful — most of me is still going to err on the side of caution and simply assume that they speak nothing but the truth. Because we all know how well known the English are for speaking the truth.

Good? Irony pointed out? Excellent. Now I can tell you about our Enginavian Christmas without you judging me. Well… too much at least. Or at least until my friend in Thailand starts writing a fecking blog…

Yeah. dude. We're still waiting.

So. English Christmas. What is it like? I could, should but won't… post a picture of our Christmas feast. Mainly because I will probably pale in comparison to the others have had, but I will still describe it and hope that that is good enough.

Stay tuned for part two.

Tuesday, 25 December 2012

Merry Xmas To The Power of Two

Tonight we dine! On crackers, cheese (including Stilton, fuck yeah!) and wine. The entertainment for the evening has so far consisted on "Just Friends" and "The Nightmare Before Christmas". So, to all a good night and a merry Xmas.

I love Ryan Reynolds in this movie.

Monday, 24 December 2012

A Bird Amongst Cats

Merry Xmas according to my country of origin. Tomorrow, you can look forward to the congratulations according to my country residency.


Sunday, 23 December 2012

We Are But Floating Wax Bubbles

Today's post. At least for now, is the delightfully thought-provoking Zach Weiner's Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal and today's comic. I thought about linking to the image.. or just posting it here. But that's not very nice, I mean think about it, I would have deprived Zach from almost seven, maybe even eight visitors. Assuming everyone who reads these clicked through and visited smbc.

Anyway.

Click the preview to read the rest.


Saturday, 22 December 2012

A Slight Delay of Plans

As I am sure you've all noticed I haven't uploaded a Christmas song yet. Don't worry. The plan is still to record and upload it. But after yesterday's company party and today's hangover I simply wasn't up for singing the song just yet. That and the fact that it isn't quite ready yet. As in I'm still writing it. I'm hoping that at the very latest I will have done by Christmas.

At least that's the plan I have set out. Now whilst I know it deviates from the original plan of "today" it's still close enough to be valid. I'll just have to put off going to Disneyland for a couple of days. Which is fine. So a new plan is born. Out of necessity rather than anything else. And I'm fine with that too.

Until then, here's another video of a Russian guy playing acoustic guitar. Only this time it's "November Rain" by Guns N' Roses. It's still just as feckin awesome though. Enjoy.

Acoustic Dubstep By A Russian Guy

This is pure awesome!

Thursday, 20 December 2012

I Can Haz Secret Too

Well. Kind of, at least. The plan/secret is this; Write and compose a Christmas themed song. Have it done by tomorrow. Record and upload to youtube by Saturday. By Sunday, having simultaneously achieved world fame with said song, cured all forms of cancer and saved everyone's Christmas — that was obviously going to suck, without said song — retire to enjoy life and maybe go to Disneyland.



Good plan, right?

I've gotten this far on the song; "It's that time of the year, the season's drawing near…"

See you (pop)starside.

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Bioshock Infinite, First Five Minutes

Are you excited? I know I am!

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Jingle Bell Rock

Nothing brings in the Yule tide spirits like a little Walk off the Earth.

Monday, 17 December 2012

Hell Of A Town

Like I said earlier. Quantity over quality. But also this video was kind of cool so there's also that.

Sunday, 16 December 2012

Rough Trade, by Oglaf



Because a) Oglaf his hilariously awesome albeit inappropriate at times and b) I'm too tired to write anything.

Thursday, 13 December 2012

I'm Thankful For This Shitty Song

This shitty song almost makes me want to kill myself. But only almost. The fact that this shitty song has over 13 million views, now that, makes me want to kill myself.

But instead of actually "offing" myself I'm just going to continue to write sad and brooding songs called "Most Lesbians" or "My Undying Love For You Will Never Decompose (But My Body Might)".

Speaking of which, I haven't uploaded a recording using my new equipment yet. I should really do that as soon as this cold I've caught — or flu or whatever — subsides. My voice isn't its best right now because of it. But at least — thankfully and finally — my singing voice has normalized more since I stopped smoking.

At some point I want to start recording and uploading unfinished songs, riffs, or just random bits. Basically the musical equivalent of a sketch. Why? Well, no real particular reason other than the fact that I personally think the result is never quite as interesting as how you got there. So, in that spirit I should contribute with my process of working.

In the end, it's probably mostly because I'm a self-indulging narcissist. But let's at least pretend I'm doing it for the good of mankind… or whatnot.


Wednesday, 12 December 2012

An Atomic Duke Worth Having

Happy Holidays people, here have some Duke Nukem 3D: Atomic Edition as a gift from me — but actually from GOG.com — to you. Better hurry up though as it's only valid until this Friday at 14:59 GMT. Or in the famous words of Duke himself: "What are you waiting for? Christmas?"

Monday, 10 December 2012

Robot Unicorn Attack

I am lost for words. No really, I am. And if that's wasn't enough. It's gets better worse.

Sunday, 9 December 2012

The 467 Character Post

4 hours of sleep last night. 10 work days until my Christmas vacation is on! I've spent most of today drawing different t-shirts for the digital avatar of Carlos. Obviously you have seen some of them already but most of them are going to be my little secrets until the revised Fiinix Design Carlos Eriksson website is finished. Now, I am going to go to sleep. So, even though this post is quite short, it's long enough (467 characters, haha!) to not fit into a tweet.

Saturday, 8 December 2012

Doctor Molestation

Fatawesome.com is awesome… and well… fat too, I suppose? And here's the proof of its awesomeness and coincidently of my sense of humour, as well. Consider yourself warned?

Posted after the jump because the image is quite long.

Friday, 7 December 2012

Funny vs. Amazing

This video is amazingly cool. But be warned as there might be a spoiler or two in case you haven't seen Prometheus yet.




This is just funny. Have a happy 11 minutes of what's left of this Friday. Also, double post. How cool is that? Pretty cool. Unlike Skype.


How Skype Took A Dump On My Metaphorical Carpet

Taking a small break from writing copy for my website — in between the gingerbread baking — I take a moment to reflect… on life, death, and…

Nah, I'm kidding.

I rant about Skype and its piss poor User Experience.

Thursday, 6 December 2012

Fuck You, Pay Me!

Originally I was going to call this post "Fuck You, Pay Me!" in honour of Mike Monteiro but I decided against it and changed it to "Sit Down And Shut Up!" because I thought it might be too offensive. Then I changed my mind back and forth for a while, always wanting to revert back to my original idea but always feeling a bit hesitant, like a small child doing something they know is naughty. In the end, as you can see I decided on the more — possible — offensive way because… well… Fuck you. Pay me. That's why.


Tuesday, 4 December 2012

The Reinvented Light Bulb

I would like five of these please, LIFX.

Monday, 3 December 2012

The Other Kind of Writing

Today I'm writing and rewriting copy (text) for my website. Pretty much all of my earlier copy is being revised, reworded or simply removed to make room for better copy. Some of it is shit, some of it is okay and some of it is actually still  — surprisingly — good and probably won't need as much work. Here's a few movies I can recommend for you whilst you wait. Solaris, a science fiction-psychological drama from 2002 starring George Clooney. Creepy good but not for those who don't like a bit of thinking. Paranorman, a 3D stop-motion animated comedy horror film from 2012 made by the same studio — Laika — that made the beautiful and excellent Coraline. I'm not actually going to spoil this one at all but if you're even the slightest fan of stop-motion animation or their earlier Coraline, you need to see this movie right now.

Also, have a comic why don't you.

Today's comic brought to you by the excellent kateordiecomics.com.

Sunday, 2 December 2012

A Dickensian Christmas

I was actually going to write a post about the relationships between Love and Hate but I am too tired to get the bubble charts to display accurately. Damn it! The numbers don't add up! I will have to save the charts for some other day. Instead I am going to keep this one short and just tell you about how we went to Rochester and experienced their Dickensian Christmas.

Saturday, 1 December 2012

You Can't "Like" My Poop Any More

I would like to say that I have been going back and forth with it for some time now but the truth is, I haven't. As you might notice, the "Like" button is gone. And it isn't coming back either. Now there are a number of reasons — three — for this and I will gladly tell you them all, even the really, really sad one.

Friday, 30 November 2012

Carlos Versus Cancer

Obviously I don't have cancer. No. Today just marks the end of November and the end of growing a moustache to raise awareness for prostate and testicular cancer.

Thursday, 29 November 2012

What The Fuck Am I Eating?

Curse me and my curious nature. Curse it to the bowels of the deepest, darkest recesses of my colon.

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Above All Else, Focus

I'll leave you with this great quote for the day. And that's it. I've got stuff to do.
"every single element of cognitive burden removed makes it easier to stay focused on the task in hand"

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

The Quest For The Perfect Gingerbread Cookie

It has begun. Unless if was already apparent by yesterdays little story — and more accurately where it ended, but I can imagine that maybe that was only clear to me — I have begun looking for the perfect gingerbread cookie recipe.

Monday, 26 November 2012

A Rainy Night On Drury Lane

Have a seat and join me for a little story why don't you. Picture the following scene…

Sunday, 25 November 2012

Waiting To Shave

I've already posted about this once before, but seriously… I… want… to play… this… game tomorrow. I obviously can't. Just like no one else can either… well… aside for the people of Big Robot, who is making the game. They obviously can, but that sort of defeats the point of me saying "Gah! I want to play this, but I can't. No one can!" if in fact… someone can. Anyway, I'm obviously talking about Big Robot and their stellar Kickstarter funded-to-be, survival and stealth in a procedurally-generated world, "Sir, You Are Being Hunted".

Saturday, 24 November 2012

A Guiding Hand In Hollywood

Unsure which movies to watch? Fear not for you are in — moderately — safe hands. Lean back, relax and make yourself uncomfortable as I venture out into the wild to find you the movies worth your time. And the ones you should avoid like the plague. You know how to avoid something like the plague, don't you? No? Jeez, do I have to do everything in this relationship? Oh well, after this… you will know.

Wait, that last bit sounded a bit more ominous than I had intended. Oh well. Also, before you continue after the jump, I suggest you go make yourself a sandwich and maybe empty your bowel. You're going to be here a while.

Friday, 23 November 2012

Don't Starve

This little piggy is going to sleep, so until tomorrow I am just going to leave this here, mkay?

Thursday, 22 November 2012

Mary Fudgemas

Which you know… sort of, kind of, rhymes with "Merry Christmas". But this post isn't about Christmas. Don't worry though, we'll get to that at a later date. No, this post is mundanely just some minor ramblings and two pictures.

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Not a Shower, Nor a Grower

As you might remember I was going to raise awareness for cancer by growing a pitiful moustache. Here's some photographic evidence of my — so far — less than impressive attempt at growing a 'stache. Let this be a lesson to everyone. I challenge you to not look like an idiot, in a moustache.

Monday, 19 November 2012

How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Cigarette

8 weeks and 1 day ago I took a long and semi-permanent break in smoking. That post title over there. Yeah, that one. A reference again, I like you those as you probably already know and I am not planning on stopping them any time soon. Not that you've ever complained. This post, the one after the jump. It's about how I realistically managed to stay smoke free.

Sunday, 18 November 2012

Sunday Flu, Monday Stay Home

I'm sick. Again. For fucks sake.

Saturday, 17 November 2012

Do You Feel That?

Keeping up with my current theme of "writing" I am simply going to leave these three videos here, mkay? So they're releasing Jurassic Park in 3D… in celebration of 20 years later. But to be honest — the movies were all right I suppose — the only thing I could think about when watching the new trailer was that it feels oddly edited towards the attention span of a modern audience. I say "oddly" because it actually irked me. In a way I suppose it all makes sense, but at the same time I would have genuinely enjoyed the opportunity to watch a frame for frame remastering of the trailer from -93. The movie is the same, why shouldn't the trailer be too?

Anyway, I'll let you judge for yourself after the jump.

Friday, 16 November 2012

Friday Boob Video

It's Friday so you should get a funny video about boobs. Well… sort of about boobs anyway. At least it's funny.

Thursday, 15 November 2012

A Promise Is A Promise

So yeah, I stupidly promised my wife I wouldn't sit at the laptop today. And whilst I am very open the idea of relaxing away from the computer, this time it was ridiculously  easy to follow my wife's advice because I am so tired that I actually just want to sleep.. Hence the shortness of my post, okay?

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

I Miss Certain Kinds of Fish

This post's title is a reference to the Thanks For The Fish post I wrote the day we left Finland. That post title in turn was a pretty obvious — at least I think — reference to Douglas Adams' "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy". Right. Now that we have covered all the various references made here and there, let's get to the point of this particular post. Which should also be pretty obvious at this point but lest it isn't, I will simply state it here. I miss — amongst other things — Salty Liquorice, a lot.

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Living In The Moment

Today, just like yesterday you are — disappointingly, I might add — going to have to settle for something short. Only this time, to spare you the effort of reading a Victorian book about the language of flowers, I thought I would provide you with a video instead. David Mitchell's Soapbox ranges from "awesome" to "meh". Here's one that's a bit "above average" on that scale.

Monday, 12 November 2012

Please Accept This Zinnia

And that's all you're going to get to today. Well… that and a link this book.



Sunday, 11 November 2012

Anomalous Atmospheric Conditions

Some posts write themselves — metaphorically of course, I still write them and those damn posts aren't going to get all the credit — in a couple of hours, whilst others take weeks, even months of doing research, collecting data, making various charts and then starting over because you didn't like the charts. This is one of the latter posts. The 28th of September —2011, not 2012 — is the time stamp for on of the first files I have on this, mind you back then I didn't actually think it would be a post. But here it is, in all its glory. Enjoy!

Saturday, 10 November 2012

The Death of One, The Life of Another

Which probably sounds a lot more mystical and life-altering that it should when really, it's about how my stupid USB-Mouse decided to die on me today but "Hey", at least the Gyro sensor on my phone is working again. Weird, right? And not to so mystical. More after the jump.

Thursday, 8 November 2012

This Is The Post Title

Holy crap. I honestly forgot that I was supposed to write a post today. Yeah, despite having done it now — to my own surprise — every day I still managed to forget it. Well… almost at least. So to make up for "almost forgetting" to write, I thought I'd ramble a little and then show you some screen shots of how the brand readjustment (from Fiinix Design to Carlos Eriksson) is going.

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Sui Generis

Stop whatever you're doing and watch this video. To be perfectly honest I have a hard time believing it's true, that's how amazing it looks.


EDIT: Here's their website and their Kickstarter page.

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

It Went Down On Me

As in, my website is down. Or what did you think I meant? This is a bit worrisome as it shouldn't be down. So I hope you'll excuse me if this is all I write today, as I'd really like to get to the bottom of this. Whilst you wait you could always donate to Wikipedia or play Halo 4. Damn it, I wish I could play Halo 4.

Monday, 5 November 2012

In Honour Of That Dude

This time I am actually going to keep it short. My wife suggested "Tadaa!" as being appropriately short. But pondering on this plan I perceived that perhaps it would be preposterous to presume it passable to pen such a poor piece. So I didn't. But I hope you know where this is going anyway.

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Lazy Sunday Rain

Because it's Sunday, it's raining. And well… I suppose I'm lazy. Yes, especially because I'm lazy. So lazy so, that this post will mostly feature a bunch of videos stuff about indie and/or AAA games I would really like to play. If watching reading that doesn't float your boat, well… I hope you brought a life vest.


Saturday, 3 November 2012

Surprisingly Not Hungover

I'm sure you weren't expecting to read something this early today, considering that I was out yesterday. Well neither was I, so in a way it feels like a third person should be the one to jump out from behind the curtain yelling "Surprise!", but alas there is no third person here so we're just going to have to settle without the "Surprise!" -part. So let's talk binge-drinking and ageing.

Friday, 2 November 2012

Why I Don't Believe In Voice Recognition

I'm going out tonight, so instead of NOT posting something - which wasn't really much of option given my recent challenge - I thought I would try the voice recognition on my phone. Turns out there doesn't seem to be a way to get a (dot) at the end of a sentence. Which makes for pretty odd sentences. Have fun deciphering the paragraph after the jump.

Thursday, 1 November 2012

November, Movember

This year I thought it would be "fun" to support prostate and testicular cancer initiatives so I'm joining Movember's cause to raise awareness for men's health. So I've decided to grow a moustache this month and surprisingly my wife doesn't object. Then we discuss what would be appropriate t-shirt slogan for cancer awareness for men.

Wednesday, 31 October 2012

I'm The Multitasking Man

Faced with writers block I sat around and procrastinated for 30 minutes before actually getting anything done. During those 30 minutes of procrastination however I did manage to chat briefly with my sister, come up with a topic to write about and edit the images to go with that topic. All of this whilst watching the movie Slither with one eye. So today I talk about my — sort of — new phone and how well it compares to what I used to have.

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

It's That Time Of The Year Again

And with that I of course mean "Time to carve some pumpkins!" in honour of Halloween. Not only that though as this year I got to carve two pumpkins, one to take with me to work — for the office "Carve-Off" — and the other one because quite frankly I'm spoiling my wife. She wants a pumpkin, she gets a pumpkin. As a bonus, this year is the first year where my son is old enough to appreciate/fear the pumpkin carving.

Monday, 29 October 2012

The Bird In The Hand Is Dead

"Rebuilding a Brand" is such a boring fucking title, which is why I went with "The Bird In The Hand Is Dead" instead. Also because I like being cryptic in my titles in some sort of vain attempt to capture the attention of my audience — that's you — and then give it all away by explaining the purpose — changing my brand from Fiinix Design to Carlos Eriksson and giving you a sneak preview of it — of the post before the jump.

Sunday, 28 October 2012

A Quick Fixxah

As you might recall — Nah, I'm kidding, I don't expect you to remember a post I made almost two years ago — I bound my own book some time ago. I called it Petite Cuisine D'amour, showed you some pictures of how it was made and then never mentioned it again. Yeah, that one.

Well, I'm sure you have been dying to know whatever happened to that book. No? Not even a tiny little itty bit? Oh well, then you're probably not going to enjoy the part where I tell you what happened to that book. And share some of its secrets. And when I say secret I mean that you should replace the word "Fixxah" in the title with "Pizza" and well.. I probably ruined the surprise now.

Saturday, 27 October 2012

On A Very Special Carlos

This week on a very special Carlos I talk about how beije makes me look bad by writing more than I do, what it's like to "pause" smoking and the Victorian Music Hall we're attending this evening.

Saturday, 29 September 2012

The Art of Spending More Time Doing Less

Sitting with a freshly ground, newly brewed cup of coffee in my metaphorical hand — no way I'm actually going to hold the cup, the memory of Oaky still burns too fresh — and thinking slightly about the week that has passed way too quickly. In terms of my own perspective of the passing of time at least. It hasn't actually passed at a rate any slower or faster than usually, or that couldn't be predicted to a certain extent by the observation of our universe.

Yeah, okay.. that rabbit hole went I bit further than I would have expected.

Anyway.

Coffee. Hand. Laptop. Last week. Yes, last week. I have been completely cigarette-free since last Sunday (23rd of September). And counting. Since I started smoking, roughly 12 years ago, I have smoked about a pack a day and I have only ever once been without cigarettes this long. And that time I was heavily medicated and under intravenous painkillers, so in all fairness.. it doesn't really count as being cigarette-free if you're getting better, more addictive shit. So far, so good and that is all I will say about it. Not for any fear of jinxing it but rather that the craving is more as I think/write about it. So I simply wont. Focus, clarity and other words than sounds like buzzwords until you manage to get your mind into those states.

The company I work for/at/with.. under? is moving office and come this Monday it will be interesting to see how much they have managed to get sorted over the weekend. And because of the move everything was chaotic yesterday, to the point of no one really getting any work done and only some actually even trying. I was one of the people not really trying.

Now, I imagine what you might be thinking. Well, depending on if your my boss and reading this — whilst very possible, highly improbable — or if your simply a friend of mine back in Finland (or Sweden). If you're the latter, "Hey, how nice of you to drop by!".

And for the former. Chill dude, I didn't actually sit and roll my thumbs an entire day — I get bored too easily to do that — No, what I did was something I wish was endorsed more than I at times feel it is. Now I am not pointing any fingers at my current employer simply because I am not actually 100% sure what their policy is, but for for those of you who don't subscribe to this particular train of logic. Allow me to explain. I call it proactive labour. I am sure I am not the first to coin this term or even think about this, but since I have never read about it anywhere that I can recall I am now freely going to assume I am the first. Until proven otherwise of course.

Proactive labour — or lazy people aren't lazy but effective and inventive — at its core is very simple. Mind you, not necessarily easy but very simple. It all stems from a single point of thought;

"Why spend less time doing more when you could spend more time doing less?".

And I will gladly illustrate what I mean. Imagine you are facing a problem, possible a problem you will end up facing more times than one. Now it seems to me, most people will rather solve it in 3 hours the first time and 2 hours every consecutive time. I don't. When facing a problem that may or may not recurring I want to (and for the most part do) go for analysing the shit out of it and solving it in 6 hours the first time. So far, so bad, right? Well, yes. But because I have taken the time and considerable effort to understand the problem in a much more fundamental way, every time the problem recurs, I solve it in 1 hour. You do the math and then tell me which method is more cost-effective and productive in a fiscal year.

That's what I thought.

Again. I am not pointing any fingers at my current employer but more at the general attitude amongst many employers. An expression I have heard too many times is "You're over-thinking it". To which my answer from now on will be "Yes, so that next time I won't have to".

For simple clarification as to how I practically spent my time at work yesterday — since I didn't actually get to that part yet — I basically spent my time creating a project template to remove all the redundant steps I have to do every time I start a new website design. Such as creating and consistently naming folders to keep projects organised. Does this take a long time in itself? Well, no. But it takes long enough and requires enough brain effort that I thought it was best to delegate this action to a .bat file instead. Why should I remember the names and structure of all the folders and files I need every time I start a new project, when a .bat file could do it for me.

So, I created a template folder (that can evolve as needed) with all the necessary files and my own css grid template, js libraries, etc.

I have taken something that in total can take anywhere between 15 minutes and 2 hours and condensed it into ~10 seconds.

Now I honestly don't think this is very mind-blowing. A part of me thinks it's quite crude in its simplicity, though I suppose that's part of its charm. No, the question becomes, "Why is there not already such a .bat file or similar time-saving device?" Why?

Thursday, 20 September 2012

I Suppose I Should Feel Bad

For you know, not really writing that much lately. And whilst I admit a part of me does feel bad.. there's an ever bigger part that doesn't. And today I thought I would talk to you about that part. The second one, not the first one.

Truth be told, I have so many different things to talk about. But I don't feel like I have the time to talk about them, at least not yet. Are things still hectic here? Well.. yes, a little bit. Obviously not as much as the first couple of weeks when we were moving on a two week basis, from one place to another not even knowing where we were going until a few days beforehand.

Wow, that feels pretty crazy in retrospective.

So, at least it's not that crazy. But there are still quite a few things to attend to which means that I don't feel like I have enough time to devote to writing. Well that's not entirely true either. I have started writing a manuscript for a short movie I want to make. But it's still very early stage writing, fleshing out back stories and character motivations. So yeah, I haven't been writing here, but I have been writing.

So why do I not feel bad about it? Well, aside for the reasons I already said, there's also the other reason. A very exciting reason.. at least for me. I want to refine my website.

Yes, again.

As a growing entity (much like the internet itself) I think it should grow and evolve as I evolve. And also because I am a little bored with it. And with that I would like to merge my blog with fiinixdesign.eu. This is something I have thought about for a couple of months now but I still haven't decided what the best way would be. Obviously there are perks to letting the almighty (and slightly scary) Google host it, but at the same time I can't help but to think that as the "brand" I would like to consider fiinixdesign to be, it would benefit greatly from a unified and single source design. Hence, I want to merge to two.

Whilst I could easily just start writing under my own domain, quickly creating a CMS to manage that, I would obviously like to export all the posts I have written here to its new home too. And that's where it gets a bit trickier, not for any other reason than that I have some ideas I would like to refine with this merger and with that I would have to go through every post I have made and clean them up. By no means an impossible undertaking, but a time-consuming one nonetheless. And one that I don't particularly feel like undertaking at this moment. Any good ideas beije?

Anything else? Well, for one I get to do web design every day now, which is a lot of fun. But it has also reminded me of how much I like doing other things like; sculpting, painting, writing, composing, copy writing, branding, interior design.. and well, a lot of other forms of design. But "Hey!", that's what spare time is for, I suppose.

Except I don't have enough of it.

Which is why the posts here have been shining increasingly with their absence. I won't assure you that things will get better — though they probably will — instead let me part you with these sweet words of sorrow (or something that makes more sense).

I finally got a digital kitchen scale again, so I am now one step closer to the MBJ. Hurray for me!

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

The Friction Blew My Mind

Just wow.

Les Friction. Remember the name.

Monday, 3 September 2012

Inbetween

This.. is super-extra-licking-awesome.. and I'm have to buy this album.

But instead of linking to just one song — check out Bonfire Of The Dolls — I am going to link to the whole thing. So yeah, go check out this.

Saturday, 1 September 2012

Reviving the MBJ

Oh [deity] I just realised how much I miss my morning hit of MBJ. Yes.. The EmBeeJay.. The Manhattan Blow Job. Coffee, remember?

Since we moved I have been force to improvise many times, been forced to do things I'd rather not remember and much less speak of. You know what I mean. Drinking instant coffee — I'd rather stick my tongue in Satan's fiery butthole — buying ready-to-drink coffee drinks at Tesco's — "Are you fucking kidding me?!" it tastes like sweetener with a tiny little bit of coffee. I did at one point manage to find coffee beans in a few shops but when the package said proudly "BEST BEFORE May 2013" they lost me. Methinks not, no.. two week at best.. from the day the were roasted, which it didn't say. So no thanks, he who shall not be named *cough marks cough and spencer*.

So far, the wonderful people at Hasbean has been keeping me sane with door delivered fresh coffee. One of their beans, the Nicaragua Limoncillo Pacamara Natural 2012 "Funky" is so awesome it's mind-blowing, imagine a strawberry milkshake and you're pretty close. That reminds be, I should order some more before they run out of stock.



Right, I'm back. We're good? You're good? I'm good. So we're good? Good. Now that I have that taken care of let's get back to the MBJ — not to be confused with other street drugs — I have decided to revive it, by which I mean, start making it again and hopefully improve it even more. Although the summer's coming to an end and Autumn is rearing its red-tinted head (the carpet matches the drapes) some might say that "Surely not, it's getting too cold for you to drink Ice Coffee". I have two points of information for those nay-sayers. 1] You can make hot or cold coffee using a cold brewed concentrate. 2] On average the temperature drops to -15 °C around February in Finland, here in England it only drops to -5 °C. And last winter I had nothing but Iced Coffee, all winter. And it was magically delicious.

But before I can revive the MBJ I need to find a decent digital scale (didn't take my old one with me), some cloth to filter it through (I can't remember what it's called but I know where to find it), some ice cube trays and a good supply of coffee beans (the tiny bags at unnamed shops won't do).

I'll get back to you when I have successfully revived it. I'm also going to start roasting my own beans soon. And I have plans of recording some more songs.

Let's see how many of these things I manage to complete before the end of the year.

Sunday, 26 August 2012

Living In Alan, With Alan

The ironic part is that it took me so long go get this written, that Alan no longer lives here. Thus making my clever title moot. But I am going to go with it anyway, because I wouldn't want to disappoint you — my numerous readers — who have patiently waited for me get my metaphorical thumb out of my metaphorical ass and actually write this. So here it is, the full scoop. The "So real, it's like you almost lived there yourself" -post.

Hmm.. maybe I'm overselling it a bit? Nah..

Come next Tuesday I have been working at Sitewizard exactly three months, which means it's been exactly three months and one week since we took a bag each and moved to England. Or departure has been called "brave and courageous" by some, "pretty 'effin stupid' by others (I'm the one who called it "pretty 'effin stupid" once).

What have I (or the collective We) learned so far?

Well for starters, people who move abroad seem to be under the delusion that everything will be so different and strange, and whilst that is true in some cases (and probably more so if one moves to a less developed country) for the most part, it's simply a matter of finding that particular shop that stocks whatever weird thing that you eat regularly that isn't as common in your new country. Case in point — you're going to love this one Beije — Lonkero, the most popular alcoholic beverage in Finland (feel free to look it up if you don't believe me) isn't readily available elsewhere. And obviously the bartender hasn't heard of it — why would he? — so he can't mix something up. One quick google search later we had a recipe thanks to Fred Fry and his blog, lo and behold;
  • A shot of Gin
  • Grapefruit Soda
  • Top of with a splash of Tonic Water (Optional)
Mix in highball glass filled with ice cubes.

We actually tried it with two shots of Gin (just like Fred, don't!). But felt the Gin came through too strongly. And the pub we were at didn't have Grapefruit Soda, so we substituted it with Elderflower, which worked surprisingly well. We also added a splash on regular soda water to take the edge of it. So yeah, not really following the recipe at all, but "Hey", when in Rome.. (or something of equivalent explanatory level).

Either way.. there you go, "Lonkero".. or Tentacle if you will, which is the literal translation and also the name I am going to start calling it. "One Tenctacle, please.."

So yeah, you can pretty much find anything here too, Crisp bread being the only exception so far. I have not been able to find that.. then again.. I haven't been looking that thoroughly either.

So, why the title "Living In Alan, With Alan"? Yeah funny story — assuming you have bad sense of humour — the house we live in is called Rupert Alan House.. and our former next door neighbour's name is Alan. So there you go, though as I write it and check for spelling and/or grammatical error I am struck by the sudden realization that it isn't nearly as funny as it was in my mind. Oh well, can't win them all. Obviously I used "with" in a very loose sense, though we do have some of his furniture which should count for something.

No?

Fine. Here's a picture tour of our humble abode, with captions to boot. I will try to make a video tour as well. But that's going to have to wait to another day (so realistically you should expect to see it by the end of this year).

The entrance that no one can ever find.

The house and the communal yard.

Take a left to our door, or a right if you're visiting someone else. Obviously.

Master Bedroom/Dining Room/Living Room/Office/Kitchen.

"Free" apothecary we took the liberty of liberating from its previous owner.

The Kitchen -part of the Multi-Purpose Room.

The offspring gets his own room.

He's also the only one with a TV.

Friday, 20 July 2012

Bend The Sky

Instrumental metal band from Australia, check them out at bandcamp. Pretty awesome if you ask me, especially liking "Tides" right now. Just bought the album so now I am going to annoy the missus with metal music.


A Hole In The Wall

After almost two months of—as a friend put it—"radio silence" I decide to start things up again.. not with a whimper.. not with a bang.. but with an 'effin flame. Well, not just any 'effin flame. The Olympic mother-fucking torch of all mother-fucking flames!*

Please, please contain yourself.. you're gasps and amazement are dripping all over the floor.  And trust me when I say, it's significantly cooler than you think.

Nah, I'm kidding. It was actually surprisingly lame in the end. (Yeah, there I go spoiling it right away..). Hundreds, possible thousands of people, waking their children up at dawn, hurrying to the streets just to watch as a dude dressed like any random jogger runs by, a torch in one hand and waving with the other. And done. Now it's just like you would have been there. No need to thank me, I do this from the kindness of my heart. Though I obviously wouldn't say no to a blow job. Now you might be wondering why I would attend something that I clearly have very little interest in? Well.. I was curious and I figured "This is probably one of those 'once in a lifetime' -sort of things". Unless I go to to where ever Mr. Jogger will be in a couple of days and watch it again, thus defeating the "once" -part of the saying "once in a lifetime". And before you ask—yes—the mice keep me up at night, so I get plenty of time to think about how to be clever in my blog.


One of the pictures I took this morning. Cropped and Shopped, for your pleasure.


Yeah, we have mice. I'm going with plural because I've been told you never have a mouse-problem.. you have mice-problem. Pest Control has already been here, nice guy, first thing he said when stepping into our flat was "Oh, you look like you have a cocain-problem rather than a mice-problem!" Referring to the enormous line of flour lying on the kitchen floor. I wanted to see where in the kitchen the mice were coming from, so I had poured flour on the floor the night before. He took a look under and inside our kitchen cabinets and concluded that the mice were probably coming in from the big gaping hole in the wall. Big might sound a bit on the extreme side, but it's about 20 cm in diameter and I've slept very little so you'll have to excuse me if I'm a bit over-dramatic. But yeah, apparently we have a giant (it's expanding as we speak..) hole in the wall, so now I need to contact our letting agency again and request that they send in a builder. It shouldn't be a problem, they have been very helpful so far but it still annoys me a little that whoever renovated the kitchen in the first place felt it acceptable to leave an enormous herculean (oh god, it's becoming sentient!) hole, knowing full well that it's not uncommon to have mice-problems.

That aside, life is pretty sweet. And as we speak (though I do most of the talking in this relationship) I am trying to take some good (and not so good) pictures to post in the all-encompassing "Living In Alan, With Alan" post, that I will write soon. Very soon. I promise. I have the entire weekend to write it, so I'm fairly certain I'll get around to it at some point. Not conviced? Fine..

I, Carlos Eriksson, hereby do solemnly and sincerely swear to write a blog post entitled "Living In Alan, With Alan" containing both in photographic- and written form, a full disclosure of our current living accommodations by "this weekend" as defined by a mutually agreed upon relative perspective of the space-time continuum know as "this weekend", not Euclidean space because fuck that guy for no reason.

Better?

Good, see you then.

* Snakes on a plane -reference? Yes. Have I watched it recently and now think it's really awesome to say "mother-fucking" in front of everything? No, I haven't seen it at all.
† Like I said, I haven't slept that much.
‡ I really should get some sleep.

Wednesday, 6 June 2012

Home Is Where I Walk Around Naked

You know.. as opposed to "Home is where the heart.. blah blah". Today I got it (super extra) confirmed that we're getting the apartment (flat) that we looked at two Saturdays ago. Come this Saturday we're signing the papers and getting the keys. Awesome! Our current temporary accommodation is ridiculously over-priced (and not that great either, but I will complain more on that once we're out of here) so it's going be really nice not having to worry about that as well as getting a place we can truly call our home. That also means we might be off the grid for a couple of weeks or so, but I promise I will post pictures of our new home once we have an internet connection.


The Boons latest addition to his vehicular armoury.


Besides we have more pressing things to care of that take precedence over the internet.. like a fridge.

Yeah, apparently it's not as common to rent apartments that already have them. Sure you can find apartment that come with white goods included, but we really liked the place we looked at and with the general price difference it's actually more affordable to buy our own fridge.

Oh yeah. And something to sleep on.

So, some things to think about before we're completely out of the woods. But so far so good. My NINo should arrive tomorrow (I was actually expecting it today) and I have a meeting with my personal banker on my birthday.. Yeah, turns out my birthday's coming up next (weeks) Saturday and I had pretty much forgotten all about it. I have no idea what I would/could want.


Expensive, looks good in a picture but less nice to actually live in.

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Refurbishing My Inventory

This list is more for myself than it is for you. Don't worry, I'm still writing a post about my experiences in the UK so far and one about the weather differences, but they're both taking a lot longer than I thought and I want to do them right.. so in the meantime I am now basically writing myself a shopping list of games I want to buy.. again.. I sold most of them before moving. So here we go.. the games I am going to buy again and the "lame" excuse I would tell my wife as why I "have to" buy them again.. I don't actually have to have an excuse because she's awesome, but I figured it might make this post a little more worth your while.





Batman: Arkham Asylum and Batman: Arkham City, both two incredible awesome games on their own merit.. add a sprinkle of Batman and mind-blowing performances by Mark Hamill (as The Joker) and you have two of my favourite games.. ever. I have to get these again.

The Excuse: "I haven't played Harley's Revenge yet, and.. umm.. I don't quite remember how the story goes so obviously I have to get both of them."

Ed. Note. Crap, Now I want to watch Batman: Under The Red Hood again.





Fallout 3 or Fallout: New Vegas. Including all DLC's.. obviously. I ploughed at least 150+ hours into Fallout 3 back when I bought it. Fallout 3 has its flaws definitely, Bethesda seems to go for the "oh my god, it burns my eyes!" -style of character modelling when it comes to NPCs. Simply put, they are ugly fuckers. I never really had to endure their crippling (and sometimes game breaking) bugs but that also seems to be a problem with Bethesda games. But man do I love the iconic Vault Boy character.
I'm not sure which one I am going for here, on one hand Fallout 3 is the safe card for me.. but then on the other hand Fallout: New Vegas is developed by Obsidian (meaning many original Fallout developers) and also Hardcore Mode. I think I might go for the latter.

The Excuse: "Unlike Halo, the background music won't bother you."





Bioshock, Bioshock 2 and (at some point Bioshock: Infinite). So yeah, Bioshock with its creepy (and awesome) atmosphere scared the crap out of me so much that I actually haven't played most of it yet. And by most of it I mean.. I played about 30 minutes of it and that's it.
But I totally will, I really will! I vowed that I wouldn't get to buy Bioshock 2 until I had played through Bioshock. And I really do want to play both of them. And Bioshock: Infinite whenever that actually gets released.

The Excuse: "I never had the time to play Bioshock the first time I owned it. Don't you feel bad for poor Bioshock?.. sitting there.. never getting played. Look, now Bioshock is crying."

...

So yeah. I didn't really own that many games, and some of those were "The Simpson's Game" which I have no intention of ever buying again.

And then of course, there are games that I never actually owned but I intend to squeeze in there anyway because I have wanted them for some time. Games like Alice: Madness Returns, Portal 2 and probably some other games I can't remember right now.

Any other suggestions?

...

Also there are some games that I won't have to get again.. because I kept them for sentimental reason or what have you. Like Fable 2: Limited Collector's Edition, Fable 3: Limited Collector's Edition, Halo: Reach: Limited Edition, Halo 2: Limited Collector's Edition. I guess you are seeing the theme here, I basically kept various Collector's Editions of games. Partly because I wasn't sure if I would be able to find some of these and partly because I wanted to keep them.

Friday, 1 June 2012

Please Don't Be Shit

After my enormous disappointment of Dead Island and the severe disconnect between how its teaser trailer had nothing to do with the actual game, apart from both featuring zombies, here's hoping that Dishonored won't be as much of a disappointment. Fingers crossed and butt cheeks clenched that Arkane Studios doesn't mess it up. Because I am genuinely super-mega intrigued by this game, the atmosphere alone is hooking me in and keeping me on my toes.


Wednesday, 30 May 2012

I Charted Myself

So yeah. I suppose some of you might have been waiting for this post.

Prepare to be disappointed.

Good, now we have that out of the way I can.. well.. not really write much at all. I have spent the past three hours designing various charts in Illustrator and now I'm too tired to actually write anything yet. So it'll have to wait. Yeah, I know.. I'm terrible. But at least, when I do get all the charts done I can make an awesomely long post about the weather and how our journey has gone so far. Right now I wouldn't be able to tell much anyway since everything is in a state of uncertainty. Today I filled out all the various forms that are required when letting (renting) a flat (an apartment). Now we're waiting to see.. do we get the apartment or not. So hopefully you'll bear with me as I promise to bare with you soon enough.. soon, my precious..

 If nothing else, maybe you got a good chuckle out of the title?

No? Okay.. here's a picture of the palm tree that grew in the back yard of the first accommodation (link goes to our specific accommodation) we rented when we arrived in England. Many thanks to Duncan, he was great.

Yeah I know.. awesome right? A palm tree!

Sunday, 27 May 2012

The Sittingbourne Sessions, part II

For once.. I have made good on my promise. In one and a half hour we're relocating to Maidstone, after which I wouldn't be able to finish the Sittingbourne Sessions without lying about our location. Now, my conscience is guilty-free. Feels good.. Mmmm.. Oh yeah, guilty-free..

Anyway. Here's one cover and one of my own songs.. I did two of my own, but the vocals were barely existent on the second one, so I will re-record that once I have gotten a microphone stand. I also separated them so you can easily listen to the one you like the most on repeat.. you know, because I'm such a nice guy or something.




Friday, 25 May 2012

Javascript Select Parser, part III

Why part III you might be asking yourself. Well.. beije already so nicely did part I and part II. And well.. whilst prototyping for NHL v.4 I wanted to see if I could get form elements to behave nicer.. in other words.. to actually style them. At which point I blatantly stole (expect beije gives out everything without a license, so not technically not stealing..) his Javascript select parser.

"Select" not pictured because I haven't gotten around to that yet.


So far I haven't actually gotten around to doing much about beije's select parser, but after mucking around with checkboxes and radiobuttons in my own prototype I came to thinking.. I should share the stuff too. But the NHL v.4 prototype is ugly, semi-commented at best and filled with unused codes because.. well.. it's a rough prototype.. it's me playing around with codes for the fuck of it. It also uses .svg graphics a lot.

So instead of sharing my complete mess of a code I thought I could re-write the checkbox/radiobutton parts and add it to beije's Javascript select parser.



It's still pretty quick and dirty. Tested and working in Firefox, Chrome and Safari. Not as much in Explorer (hover state doesn't work), but then again beije's was a bit iffy there too. Just like beije's though it retains some backwards compatibility, any browser that doesn't support opacity probably won't support pseudo selectors either and thus it falls back to normal checkboxes and radiobuttons.. I think.. Perfectly semantic though, as there are no extra containers or shit like that.

I put in a dropbox share for now. Here you go. And like I said, all the kudos goes to beije for the select part, I had nothing to do with that. I just expanded on it.

Being Friday and all, I thought I'd give you one last reference to the original author. And I just did. :)

Monday, 21 May 2012

The Sittingbourne Sessions

Here's.. finally.. a new video. It's quick, dirty and to be perfectly honest, a bit shit. But a sort of, good shit I suppose.. adequate bowl-movement perhaps? Remember months ago I sort of promised I would upload a video of me singing Accidents Can Happen, because that's the song I sang when auditioning for Idols? Well, I figured that they might upload a video of it, because I did an extra take for some behind the scenes web stuff, but alas that never made it to their website. So here's the song I sang for the Idols judges + two more songs. Partly because my wife thought I did the Kent song better (she's right) and partly because I thought it would be fun to do a little Bruno Mars.

Obviously my plan is totally to make a part II to this. But you know me, one doth never know if I will.



Also, fyi. I totally got the job.


Friday, 18 May 2012

Double Whammy

Interview done and I feel as though it went very well, come start of next week we'll see if I was right. And not just that, it feels like the kind of place where I would sincerely enjoy working. So double awesome!

So yeah, to all of my many, many (seven) readers out there, fingers crossed and let's hope for greatness.

The Bachelor

Because Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal by Zach Weiner is still totally awesome! As anyone ever doubted it.. :)


Monday, 14 May 2012

So Long, And Thanks For All the Fish

It was delicious. Oh, well.. it was okay at least. Goodbye Finland. As soon as I've gotten the worst of the travelling smell of me,.. that and the smell of cat urine. Don't ask. Anyway, as soon as I have taken care of the smell I am going to make a post about the differences between Finland and UK, some common myths regarding the weather and such. So you know, stay tuned and what not. Now I need to go find some food.

Friday, 11 May 2012

Oh, Jack, You're So Much Bigger In 3D

It was that or giving it the title of "This Is An Interlude II", which felt a bit.. well.. sequel-ly. Either way, here you go.. in 3D!

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

This Is An Interlude

Too much stuff to deal, getting things in order before we go. So I present you with an interlude whilst you wait for something to actually read. Here's a picture of handsome fellow, whom I would totally do if I was into penis. I'm maybe a 1 or 2 on the Kinsey scale though.
It's Joseph Stalin by the way.

Saturday, 5 May 2012

Nothing Ventured, Nothing Gained

People think we're crazy. Rightfully so I suppose since we have decided to move without accommodation and without employment. And without sufficient funds.

To be fair though, sufficient funds is a subjective matter since that mostly pertains to lifestyle choices. Our lifestyle is one of a very moderate nature so in that sense we should/could be fine. Will we? Only time will tell I suppose. Things are hectic to say the least as of right now.. and quite stressful. Between coordinating every last nuance of the "selling our shit" and "trying to not get scammed by people offering accommodations at ridiculously low prices" we have our hands full. I was being polite with the whole "distrustful" thing as I didn't want to point fingers. But in all honesty I should point fingers, if for no other reason than to enlighten others.

There are many people who have been scammed. People who have lost their hard earned money because they are, well.. partly because they are a bit naive but as far as I am concerned, for the most part, because they want to believe in a world that is more honest. A world where people do want the best for each other and are willing to help one another. Sadly, the world we live in is no such world. It's a cruel, dark and rancid Petri dish waiting for it's next victim to swallow. I wish it wasn't so, but wishing isn't going to make a difference. Changing the small monkey sphere you live in might, and even that's a stretch. I still want to think that the only difference you can make is the one that starts with you.

But back to pointing fingers. Because I want to whether I should or not. So far persons/people from Nigeria and The Netherlands have tried to scam us into believing that someone would realistically rent a 2 bedroom flat in South West London for £500. Should or does this reflect badly on everyone living in Nigeria and The Netherlands? Of course not, I am sure there are more honest people there than dishonest. But "Hey!" if you are from either of those countries and you're reading this. Those loud fuckers are making the rest of you look bad. Just thought I would let you know. Don't shoot the messenger.

So.. stressful yeah. Things are quite stressful. We're moving in less than 10 days and I suppose this story of mine will continue then..

Not to make this into a cliffhanger or anything like that. It's just the way things are right now.

Friday, 13 April 2012

The Calm Before The Storm

WARNING: The following text might (who am I kidding) contain profanities. If you are sensitive to such foul language.. well.. first of all, why are you reading my blog to begin with? Anyway, if you are sensitive to foul language and/or have a more conservative sense of humour. Here. Go there instead. You're better off. But don't start surfing around there, everything isn't safe there either.



17 days and counting down. It's 17 days until we (that's the plan at least) move to the UK. We don't know where we're moving yet, I have no job to speak of as of yet nor does my wife. I still keeping my fingers crossed on the job part. Things have a way of turning around when you least expect it. I know Dr. Phil would say I should take responsibility for my own reality. But I sort of prefer thinking more along the lines of "The light that shines the brightest, comes from the darkest of places". Either way, it's a bit scary to say the least. No, scratch that. It's fucking terrifying.

But in a way, I suppose that's what it should be like. Safety and comfort is for people who only dream about all the things the could do and later wish they had done. Not to say that Safeort (portmanteau of Safety and Comfort, just go with it.. I just made it up) and living your dream isn't mutually exclusive, but sometimes you just have to sacrifice some things.. to gain others. Some people live their whole life with unfulfilled dreams, unspoken desires and unrequited loves. I don't want to be one of those people. One thing that was made painstakingly clear to me some years ago is that our time here is limited at best. For some, even more limited than for others. But what a waste of oxygen I would be if I squandered my own possibilities. And for what? Because I am scared? Well yeah.. but of which, failing or succeeding?

I imagine Mr. Luther is turning in his grave.


But yeah, still scary obviously. Just like any great unknown would be. But fear not, as I have an awesome back-up plan.

...

I bet you're thinking prostitution. You are, aren't you? Shame on you. How dare you assume I would ever.. could ever stoop so low.

...

That's Mr. Man Whore to you and I charge by the hour, just like.. well.. every other prostitute I suppose, I don't really know how they go about their business. Maybe I should have done a little more background research before this particular segment. Oh well, too late now.

See? Even in this time of uncertainty I still have a sense of humour. What will our moving mean for this blog? Probably not much though I suspect I might have a difficult time posting actively at first, until we have settled in. Yeah, I know what you're thinking "How could you possibly post less than you do now?". To that.. I.. well.. don't have good answer. But I'm sure I could!

One thing is certain, a (big!) part of me is looking forward to finally moving so that I can hopefully start being more creative with other things again. I want to record something for my youtube channel, but I just don't feel like I have the energy to unbox my recording equipment , plug it all in, record, equalize, export, film some footage, import, edit it together, upload it.. and then after that, write some witty post about it. But as soon as I feel more energetic, I will.. I want to. Of course I would have to decide which song to record too. I should probably put that as step 1. But which song?

Until next time, remember.. you can also have a dream, even if it's a stupid one.

Saturday, 7 April 2012

Go, Go, Fallout-Boots!

I'll be short and get to the point right away. Go, get the original Fallout from gog.com for free! You obviously need an account if you don't already have one, which you should have anyway. Until 23.59 GMT on 8 April it's totally mindbogglingly free.. Already own Fallout? Well go get it anyway, you also get the 205 page Fallout Bible.. and wallpapers.. and the Soundtrack. Clicky clicky.

Gog.com even make sure that older games work on newer systems, how awesome isn't that!

If you check out this thread in No Mutants Allowed you can even get a high-resolution patch, you know.. if the rose-tinted shades of nostalgia isn't enough.

Tuesday, 3 April 2012

Come Over Here and Smell My Man-Cans

Because, you know... Real men don't own scented candles unless they come in a metal can and smell like bacon when you light them? Right? Or maybe candles that smells like Gun Powder. Or Dirt.

I am seriously not making this shit stuff up. Apparently (I must assume) if I were to be a real man I wouldn't want a candle that smells like vanilla or some other "girly" smell. Which is really too bad, because I quite like vanilla.
Just like a real woman wouldn't be caught dead using a no-brand random hammer she found in the super-market, but no no no.. she needs to use this pink hammer or maybe even host a (are you fucking kidding me) Tool Party.

Then again, I imagine it would be kind of fun to try to pick up someone at a bar with the line "Hey baby, wanna come back to my place, and smell my man-can? My man-can smells like bacon". And then, when (and if) you somehow manage to get her back to your place, you would.. you know.. actually show her your bacon-scented man-candle.

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Deceptive Drawings

Found this brilliantly simple, yet hilariously executed online game called "Drawception". It was made live last Monday, it's still in beta and the site is getting pretty hammered by requests due to linkage by rockpapershotgun.com, so be prepared for the occasional time-outs if you visit it.

Here's some of the ones where I have contributed (link, link, link and link) and if you doubt the hilarity of people and their lacking drawing skills (mine included) combined with miscommunication, then check out this one entitled "Sexy Old Lady". I rest my case.


Monday, 26 March 2012

Cutting Into The Swiss Design

Or... "How I thought I was smarter than Microsoft's Logo Designer".

I'm busy designing UX/UI Icons, which I hopefully will be able to disclose a bit more as it gets closer to completion. But this post isn't about that, but rather about me needing a small but well earned break from designing the icons. So what do I do? I design something else of course...

To my knowledge I am not the only one who has complained that Microsoft's upcoming "Windows 8" logo looks.. well.. "not so good" seems to be the general consent. It's one thing to criticize and complain about how something could be better, it's a completely different thing to actually do something about it. For instance, I respect the second one significantly more than I respect the first one. Maybe their logo is a "love it or hate it" -approach to design and everything in it is by choice, I sure hope so. I can respect a conscience choice even if I don't agree with it.

But I don't know.

And since I partly agree with some of the criticism that's been floating around I thought "Surely I can do better than that!". Not so surprisingly enough, that is actually where many of my projects start from. Well.. enough talk. This post wasn't go to be about my narcissistic tendencies.

The short version is: I don't like Microsoft's new "Windows 8" logo so I designed a new (ish) one using Microsoft's own Visual Guidelines for their Metro interface. Feedback and opinions are of course greatly appreciated, because I am actually very curious to hear what other people think.. Did I do a better job at it?


This Monday Sucks a Little Less

Some times Mondays just suck, don't they? Probably where they expression "Having a case of the Mondays" comes from. As a "fun" exercise, if you type in "mondays sucks" into Google you get about 130 000 000 (130 million) results. No try typing in "fridays sucks" and you're presented with a measly 5 370 000 results.

In fact...

Because I love statistics and will take any excuse to make a chart of any kind, here's a handy chart depicting the amount of "sucks" for every day of the week, so illustrate how much Mondays suck more than any other day of the week.

Fun fact, Monday is pretty tightly followed by Thursday.. I didn't expect that but I suppose it makes sense in a Western work week sort of way.

I wonder if xkcd has ever done this joke?


So why am I bringing this up? Well, because despite the fact that Mondays clearly "statistically" speaking sucks more than any other day, this Monday sucks significantly less. Why? Because of coffee of course, my dear readers.

Today my "long" — and by "long" I mean it got blended/roasted/shipped last Wednesday, but I am a very impatient man — awaited coffee arrived in our mailbox. Many thanks to everyone at eightpointnine, and more so to Kris and Jess. Now I want to make some things clear right of the bat. I am a single estate kind of coffee drinker. I don't want my delicious beans blended and diluted to form an incoherent drink that lacks character. That hasn't changed one tiny bit, it's just how I like my coffee not to say that there's anything wrong with liking blends or anything. It's just a personal preference.

But if I were to prefer blends over single estate coffee, by God I would order it from eightpointnine.com. The reason I felt the need to point out my liking of single estate isn't because I am a pompous buffoon, it's because I have tried many blends and never liked a single one. It's always been something too wrong with them to make me want to include them in my repertoire of beans. I think I'm inclined to change my mind now, or at the very least, consider the fact that "Yeah, I could add a blend to my repertoire".

Itella however should really get their shit together.



The verdict: Wonderful sweetness. Excellent mouth-feel. Appropriate acidity (I like mine less). The figs had more of a side role, which is where I like my figs. The caramel-y butterscotch-y-ness was quite present through and through, very nice. The only drawback is the lack of character that I suspect is a bit of a curse and blessing with blends, for comparison I can easily recall the flavour profile of Monsooned Malabar even though it's been months since I drank any. I can imagine "forgetting" the profile of this coffee because it doesn't give me a tangible note to hang on to. But at the same time I am already wanting to have another cup of it. So maybe the lack of character is balanced out by it's stability in flavour instead. Because this feels like a consistent coffee. Having said all of that I am giving this a 4+ out of 5.

For those interested, my personal blend — You can design your own blend — consists of 96% Colombian, 2% Brazilian and 2% Costa Rican and packs a rich mouth-feel and sweetness to it. Eightpointnine recommends having a coffee-to-water ratio of .055 when brewing coffee, which is definitely a good ratio but I like mine at .066. Which means instead of 16,5 grams to 300 grams of water I use 19,8 grams. But out of curiosity I am going to try their ratio too.

Eightpointnine doesn't ship internationally.. yet. But as soon as they do, you owe it to yourself to try them out. You can even get the first box for free using either of these codes (8PT9FREE or GQ94BTN) so you what are you waiting for?

...right.. international shipping. Unless you live in the UK, in which case. Go! Order now! Let me know, what you thought?

Thursday, 15 March 2012

Sssh, They Might See Me

Journal, part I

I'm preparing for night two in this foreign land. I feel pretty confident at this stage that the local population had been made aware of my presence, despite my best efforts to conceal it. Fear not though dear readers as I have figured out the patterns by which they move and with the secret to blendning in.

It appears many of them use a sort of sub terrainial form of transportation, referred to by the local population as "ndrgrnd". And when using this transportation they all appear very.. well.. bored for lack of a better word, trying all forms of entertainment whilst in "transit" such as reading newspapers or listening to "music". It is in these observations that I have made my discovery, which I shall call "Carlosian Stealth", after it's great inventor.. me.

By appearing as indifferent as the local population I have managed to blend in, become one of them. Or so I hope because I can only imagine what would happen to me should they ever find out that I am not truly one of them. I may have tasted their local cuisine (an odd sausage looking thing with beans on the side, that I hope to never have to endure again) and walked amongst them but I have not yet become as they seem to call a... "Lndner".

As night falls I have taken refuge in my temporary shelter for I dare not try to walk amongst them at night. With time I will most likely be forced to venture out at night as well, but for now I have managed to make due with the supplies at hand.

Only time will tell... only time.

End of Journal, part I

Sunday, 11 March 2012

Up, Up And Away

Next week will be very exciting. On Wednesday evening I am flying to the UK for an interview on Thursday. Obviously I don't know how things will go yet, but I am very (very) excited about the prospect of landing a job in the UK before we move there. Oh, right, I don't remember if I mentioned that. We are moving to the UK regardless of my employment status. Besides, so far most of the rejections I have received have been based purely on the fact that I (and we) don't already live in the UK. Which tells me it shouldn't be that hard to get a job, aside for the recession and high unemployment, for me it's mostly been about geographical location. Which is easily rectified. Which is why we (as the collective whole) have decided that we will move regardless, according to our own schedule were are "out of here!" by the end of April, but obviously if I get a job before that, we will move before that.

I have never before noticed how many of my sentences start with "Which", I wonder if I do that a lot or if it's just a fluke that the three previous sentences started like that. Hmm.. maybe I  could research that with a word scanning algorithm of some sort? Oh, the things I do.. "For Science!".

Ahem, the side-stepping aside, point of this post is that I am excited, and whilst I am going for a casual and cool "Orlando Bloom"-ish excited look I am pretty certain I come across as more of a "Small Randomly Googled Giddy Girl with Crudely Photoshopped Rainbow Shooting Out Of Brain".. ish.. look. You get the point, right?

Interesting side fact, both of these pictures were a result of me typing in "excited" into Google's Image search. I use the term "interesting" very loosely, it's more of a "interesting" in the same manner as observing the current weather is interesting.. as opposed to "Oh, my god, this hot-dog is the awesome-est hot-dog I have ever eaten! I can't breath for how awesome this hot-dog is"[1] -interesting.

[1]. Eddie Izzard in his Stand Up Special "Circle".