Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Chez Herbert

An old school friend, who is a Francophile and usually spends the summer in southern France, had a summer holiday in Reunion Island this year and sent me this photo with the caption "Die Folgen des Brexit" (Brexit consequences).

Thursday, September 15, 2016

The Quality of Leicester

Publication of the third (apparently entirely new) edition of the popular and impressive The Quality of Leicester book should be more or less imminent, as indicated by author Michael Taylor during a talk he gave last November (see "poster" below).
In the meantime, 'preview' photos were installed on the hoardings around the construction site at the recently demolished "Faulty Towers" building (former HQ of Leicester City Council) – see screenshot from Google Street View below. The temptation to take "photos of the photos" was too great to resist, resulting in an online photo album.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016


Sogenannte "Autoposer" scheinen in Deutschland zu einem Problem zu werden. Siehe Spiegel-Berichte hier und hier.

Foto: Spiegel

Foto: Spiegel

Interessanterweise steht "Poser" (und "Poserin") bereits im Duden! "Autoposer" wird wahrscheinlich demnächst aufgenommen.

Als Reaktion auf Autoposer empfiehlt sich demonstratives Wegschauen.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Reading list: The Goblin Reservation

The Goblin Reservation, described as a forgotten classic and "more light-hearted than most of Simak’s other novels" comes with a 'highest recommendation' as "a near-perfect blend of action, humor, and conscience". It was also recommended by a Russian translator colleague.

Cover of the original Berkley paperback edition
of 1968, courtesy of Polite Dissent

Illustration by Soviet artist Eugenia Sterligova,
from Wikipedia

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Laundry balls

Laundry balls were all the rage a few years ago. The corresponding marketing claims always seemed somewhat pseudoscientific. Cf. Wikipedia. It seems quite a few 'eco stores' were taken in by the apparent greenwash propaganda – or worse, were perhaps 'complicit' in misleading well-meaning 'green consumers'. Could it all have been a load of balls?

Friday, August 12, 2016

Positive Psychology

Anyone suffering from symptoms of post-Brexit depression would probably be well advised to avoid reading the horror scenario described in an article by Tobias Stone with the title History tells us what may happen next with Brexit & Trump.

La Peste di Firenze, Marcello 1348

On a related note see Spiegel article under the heading The Horrifically Contemporary World of Hieronymus Bosch.

Hieronymus Bosch, "The Garden of the Earthly Delights"
Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid/ Depósito de Patrimonio Nacional

You have been warned, but if you can't resist the temptation to read the article, it would no doubt be a good idea to put it into perspective by reading the article on positive psychology by Tim Lomas.

Interestingly, a few weeks ago the same author wrote an article on 'lexical limitations to happiness' under the heading How other languages can reveal the secrets to happiness, featuring the German terms Schadenfreude and Waldeinsamkeit, for example.

Learning the language of happiness. Kzenon/Shutterstock