TNET 45: Baelin’s Route

This is a kickstarter funded short film made by a group of New Zealand actors.

It is not the mostest originalest story ever written and it does contain a lot of fanservice to fans of their Epic NPC man series that probably does not resonate with audience outside that particular circle.

But I liked it and maybe some of you will too.

Open thread, talk whatever you like, just do not be an asshole.

Previous thread.


  1. Gelaos says

    Oh hey, never thought I’d see Viva La Dirt League content here. I stumbled upon this channel just a month ago and had a lot of fun. The Epic NPC man series is about videogame mechanics or gaming in general. I don’t know much about the NPC man, only that he says “Mornin’! Nice day for fishing, ain’t it? Ha ha!” a lot :)

    There are also few videos, e.g. Female armor in games, that adress (albeit still in a funny way) how the videogame industry and players can be often sexist.

  2. says

    Heya, I’m home today as the second vaccine shot apparently knocked me out. I got really bad nausea, which hit while driving, which is no fun. I then sat in school for an hour for my stomach to calm down and then carefully drove back home.


    I’m not sure which smells worse, cow manure or dried and pelletized chicken manure (which is the most common commercial biofertilizer here). Any way, an old saying here is: “Manure is the lord of the field.” (Sonta on pellon herra.*)

    I got the pelletised chicken shit as well. It stinks, but it decomposes quickly. I always laugh and think of my gran who used to rant that people would buy “shit in a nice bag” when something was really unnecessary and/or bad quality, because it’s exactly that (though not unnecessary)

  3. lumipuna says

    Giliell -- Sorry for your side effects. Since I explained my own longterm health issue in a recent comment, I was given an appointment for a vascular specialist on 30 August -- two days after I’m due to my second vaccine shot. Now I wonder if I should reschedule the shot.

    The chicken manure quote is from Ice Swimmer (not that it matters). Speaking of chickenshit, a month ago Finnish public broadcaster ran this story of a local environmental disaster in Pobeda, Russia. The top photo is a literal shit creek flowing from a field where a soviet-era chicken farm has dumped thousands of tons of chicken manure over the decades. People living in the village 1 km away suffer from the smell and polluted groundwater, and the leaking nutrients end up polluting the Baltic Sea.

    The story says there are many of these gigantic animal farms (esp. chicken farms) near St. Petersburg, to supply the city’s consumers, but not enough farmland the distribute the manure. The village of Pobeda is located about halfway between the city and Finnish border, formerly known as Finnish Kanneljärvi (“Harp Lake”). The places in that area were given new Russian names after WWII, of which Pobeda (“Victory”) is very historically symbolic.

  4. lumipuna says

    Yesterday’s top temperature at my nearest weather station was 31.6 C, which must be one of the highest ever recorded in June. Last night’s minimum was 22.6 C, which might be the highest ever recorded in June locally, if not nationally. Today, we seem to be staying just below 30 C, while there’s a big thunderstorm underway in parts of western Finland. Some places have reportedly had 3 cm diameter hail.

    Cooler weather can’t arrive soon enough.

  5. lumipuna says

    My brain is melting. I typed an update on the weather, then clicked “refresh” instead of “post comment”. That’s how the weather is here.

  6. lumipuna says

    We did have 30 C again, in early evening. One place in southeastern Finland had 33.6 C, when the national all-time record for June is 33.8 C.

  7. says

    I am barely able to function right now, I am getting severely depressed again. And not without a cause.

    The prospects of me making knives do not look well, for I am in a bureaucratic gridlock. My little workshop is perfectly OK and legal as long as I do not try running a business from there. Once I try that, some additional rules start applying (like an obligation to have running water) that are simply not possible to fulfill for me without investing serious money to completely re-wamp the whole building. I am reading up on the issue before I visit the business registration office next week. As far as I can understand the law, if they are forthcoming, I can be OK. If they are pissy and pedantic, I am screwed.

  8. lumipuna says

    Sorry for your workshop, Charly. Bureaucracy sucks.

    Speaking of which, we’ve just been told that mail order deliveries from the outside into the EU will be congested this summer, because the custom system will be adjusting to the new requirement of making custom declarations for each and every 10€ Chinese buttplug. Last week, I was told by the doctor I need to wear the compression bandage on my leg until I get the custom made compression socks from a manufacturer in Switzerland, which seems like lengthy processes even without mail delays, and assuming I can achieve some reasonable wound healing first.

  9. lumipuna says

    I’ve never seen the Finnish meteorological institute post so many warnings/advisories at once as today. There’s heat warning, and separate advisories for impending thunder, possible torrential rain, moderate wildfire risk and UV radiation.

  10. lumipuna says

    The storm is here -- just starts to rain with huge intensity. I’m home and just closed the windows. Thus far, more rumble from the wind than thunder. Half dark, first flashes.

  11. lumipuna says

    The storm is over, apparently with no major damage. Finally, the weather turns reasonably cool. We had almost 30 C before midday, now it’s below 20 C for the first time in days.

  12. says

    Oh fuck, Charly I’m sorry to hear

    We’ve been having thunderstorms and heavy rain here for the last days. Though I’m glad about the water and it should also have put an end to the severe plague of harvest mites we’ve been having.

  13. Ice Swimmer says

    Charly @ 8

    That sucks. I’m wishing you can find a loophole and the officials are not in the mood to be assholes.

    lumipuna @ 10 -- 12, Giliell @ 13

    The storm started quite dramatically here, huge gusts of wind, dust and water in the air and then thunder and torrential rain. I think the Capital area escaped with very little damage. The rest of the Finland less so, there were/are blackouts in rural areas (at one point 100 000 households without power) and earlier this week a previous storm killed one person in Oulu, when a tree fell on them.

  14. Jazzlet says

    I hope the officals are reasonable, and so sorry starting your busines is proving to be less simple than you hoped

    Sorry to hear about your skin problem. Mr J has a recurrent problem with ulcers or more usually with will-be ulcers-if he’s-not-very-careful, but he’s 62. The compression socks do help and you get used to wearing them, though I don’t think it ever gets pleasant. Do you have a specialist ulcer service? Not to disrespect your doctor in any way, but he has had a lot of useful advice from the specialist nurses who would come and dress his ulcer if he let it get to that stage.

  15. voyager says

    Oh, Charly
    I’m sorry things are not working out as you hoped.
    I’ll hold good thoughts about the bureaucracy and your home shop. Maybe you’ll get someone who’s feeling kindly disposed.

  16. lumipuna says

    Jazzlet -- Ah, ulcer is the word I was looking for. I was looked at by a couple different skin specialists at a public hospital, and they instructed my neighborhood public clinic on how to dress the ulcer -- I have to go there 2-3 times a week for maintenance. They also referred me to see a vascular specialist on August 30.

  17. Jazzlet says

    If Mr J’s experience is anything to go by the people doing the dressing may know more about the day to day practical care of your ulcer than the specialists; the specialists are great at diagnosis, but don’t look after the relatively mild, small kind of ulcer. I know keeping the area well moisturised once it has finally sealed over is vital, and also that the healing can take an awful long time. I hope the vascular specialist will be able to do something so this won’t have to become part of your life!

    There have been a couple of deaths of young trees, one in our garden the other in next-door-but-one’s garden, both conifers. Our neighbour who has lived here longer than us says it’s honey fungus, which would explain the death of the green gage we put in, and the state of the cherry. It’s not awful, there are trees and the walnut we put in at the same time as the green gages and cherry is doing very well, but we’ll have to give anything new we put in a lot of care to have a chance of getting it past the really risky age.

  18. lumipuna says

    My browsers (Chrome and Edge) keep clogging/crashing even after I cleared their memories from junk. Any ideas of what gives?

  19. lumipuna says

    This June’s mean temperature has been officially the warmest ever measured in Helsinki, and much of Finland. The June high temperature record was probably broken early last week in many places, but not quite nationally. Some models predict the relatively warm weather will continue into August.

    Crip Dyke just wrote on how the recent record-breaking heat in western North America has also largely broken the local society’s heat adaptation capacity. I might not experience that kind of truly extreme heatwave in my lifetime (that is extreme by local late July standards; statistically it’d be even more freaky if same locally extreme temperatures actually happened this early in the summer). However, heatwaves like the one we had last week will be increasingly common, and regular hot weather will be increasingly regular in summertime.

    As I approach middle age, I increasingly feel like even mildly hot weather is seriously detrimental to my comfort, productivity and freedom. I find I structure my whole life around staying cool, and keeping my home as cool as possible. It’s not a matter of life and death, but of avoiding discomfort during increasingly extensive periods of time. I increasingly wonder how people living in hot climates (with their traditional cultural adaptation, but traditionally without air conditioning) manage to get anything done in their regular hot weather.

    Recently I’ve started seeing talk on how climate change could make world’s hottest areas truly unlivable for humans, beyond any cultural adaptation capacity (other than using lots of air conditioning). I must presume that, well before that point, the heat should severely restrict human life, happiness and economic productivity.

  20. Oggie: Mathom says

    Hello, all.

    Just some updates.

    As of June 29th, I am retired. That Saturday was my last day as a National Park Ranger. Now I am on the roles of OPM. Of course, I will be remaining on OWCP, but I am retired.

    Which is mindblowing. I am 55 years old and rerired. I spent 30 years as a park ranger — tours, ed groups, bus groups, talks, walks, illustrated programs, programs with props and artifacts, compiling statistics, writing grants, justifying the continuation of grants (hint — the term ‘underserved communities’ is very helpful in that), directing traffic, teaching first aid, CPR and AED, responding to injuries, finding and killing and removing paper wasp nests, graphic manipulation and preparation for publications, exhibits and signs, staffing road blocks at federal incidents (including checking vehicles for bombs at the Javett’s Center after 9/11 and keeping a short battalion of National Guard ‘safe’ after Katrina) and forest fires, managing the security component fires and incidents (one fire at which I was SECM (Security Manager) was 1.2 million acres and I had 31 people with 34 vehicles (it can get weird — a couple of earlier security people kinda forgot to turn in rental trucks)), and basically enjoying a dream job which, after husband and dad, was my life. And now it is over.

    Which feels wrong.

    Oh, well. I shouldn’t complain. Lots of quality time with the 2-year-old twins. Who I have to go help control dinner time.

    Love to all.

  21. Oggie: Mathom says

    And I forgot collecting fees, taking reservations for train rides, telling people where to go (and how to get there), dealing with co-workers etc.

  22. says

    I’m still going to wish you a happy retirement. I know from family members that adjusting can be hard, especially when you really like the job. And I bet the twins are a great distraction.

    Yay, my wound management has been downgraded from bandages to band aid. The wound is healing nicely and the stitches will come out on Monday. What is still giving me trouble is the nerves. The finger is pretty numb and a wrong movement will send up a jolt of pain, but not where the wound is. My GP says that it’s probably pinched in the stitches, which had to be pulled real tight because I nicely severed a larger blood vessel. I can tell you, feeling your hand lie in a nice warm puddle of your own blood is an experience.

    Weather here was cool and rainy, but not the catastrophic rainfall they had in some parts of Germany.

  23. StevoR says

    The power and beauty of the human voice :

    (For so many years I mistook this song for Chinese not Welsh whatever that means and is worth,)


    (17 minutes long. yet low, deep tones & known remembered mythology such power.)


    (The Doctor -- & not the Fremantle one of cricketing fame. Tho’ given th scope of his travels..)

    Fictional all but such emotional power. For me anyhow.

  24. StevoR says

    Then the music that vibrates inside you bones (well mine anyhow) :

    The highlight of my day as a kid once. Seeing this, hearing this.Sad maybe. True.

    Also this surreal old Greek gods in space turned into SF manga / anime :

    Then for something completely different and satirical and true as F :

    Scott NoClue. Also best use of the pause in a while..

  25. says

    @Giliell, if you have severed the nerve, all is not lost but it will take years to recover. I really do hope the nerve is just constrained by the stitches and that you will get better really soon. If the knife was really sharp, the wound will heal better.
    The tip of my left middle finger that I have injured with a hatchet over two years ago (how the time flies) is slowly starting to feel normal again, but still is not fully recovered.

  26. lumipuna says

    IDK if this is a severed nerve issue, but I have a numb spot on the inside of my thigh, presumably from the hernia surgery I had 10 years ago. It took me a year or two to even notice it, so it’s not really a problem. However, the support net thingy they installed in my groin has since unraveled, and I feel somewhat frustrated about the prospect of getting another operation.

  27. Ice Swimmer says

    Oggie @ 23-24

    Happy Retirement, Oggie!

    Giliell @ 25

    Hoping for the best with your finger and nerve.

    lumipuna @ 31

    Could the orifice through which “tyrä rytkyi” have become tighter or less elastic, or will it be necessary to get a new support net?

  28. StevoR says

    Interesting article here :

    Via Slate and also another good Slate unterview one just seen here :

    Also, in totally unrelated news, our daytime star has flared up again :

    Which may be good news for any aurora-seekers here..

  29. lumipuna says

    Ice Swimmer:

    will it be necessary to get a new support net?

    Probably, though I haven’t consulted a doctor on it. In any case, it seems a second surgery would be more complicated than the first one. My hernia is basically only a mild inconvenience, and a cosmetic issue (though no one sees me naked anyway).

  30. Hekuni Cat, Social Justice Ninja, MQG says

    Giliel -- I got the package. They are beautiful!

  31. says

    @Hekuni Cat
    I’m glad to hear! Sorry it took me so long.

    Well, the stitches are out. The outer side is back to normal again, the inner side is still numb. But I can wash my hands again. At least I noticed how much into the habit of washing my hands I’ve gotten.

  32. Jazzlet says

    Yay for stiches out and being able to wash your hands (and everywhere else that hand would have washed) again. Nerves do grow back, I think how fast may to an extent depend on how important the feeling in the area is, so longer for places like lumipuna’s inner thigh, and the half moon area (pelvic bone straight across to pelvic bone curving upwards to tummy button) above my hysterectomy scar which took maybe ten years, but shorter for thing like fingers. I hope so, I have an operation on Friday to remove the strange hard lump from my left ring finger, the lump itself has interferred with my nerves so the feeling above is as if I was wearing a glove. I don’t think I’ll have any feeling there after, they’re doing a skin graft over the area as the lump removal will apparently leave too large a hole. The lump is only 15 mm by 8 mm at it’s longest and widest, I’ve had holes that large heal perfectly well (ok with some scarring) but they weren’t across a finger joint. Anyway I hope your healing continures to go well and that you have full sensation back jolly soon!
    Incidentally what do you look for in dried petals for your resin work?

    Congratulations, I hope you find enjoyable things to occupy your time when you are not helping with the twins.

    That is frustrating, I hope if you do need further surgery it fixes the hernia for good.

    The weather here has been deeply frustrating, June was so dry I’m not sure we will get any garlic at all despite watering it, the onions are a little better but I don’t think it will be a good crop. Who knows about the poatoes, except now that it has rained every day for over a week, and heavily on many of those days I’m sure some of the potatoes will be split. I suspect everything will be somewhat delayed.

    I have been able to see my SiL and a friend which was fantastic, but I’m not/wasn’t allowed to see anyone from Monday when I had a PCR test to after my little operation on Friday -- they really don’t want patients bringing in COVID, quite understandably.

  33. lumipuna says

    It’s midnight here, and temperature at my nearest weather station just dropped below 25 C -- the Finnish meteorological threshold for a “hot summer day”. This might become the warmest night ever recorded in Helsinki. We’ll likely break the record for the number of hot summer days this year, too.

  34. lumipuna says

    The overnight minimum was 21.9 at my station, 22.4 in city center. Probably not a local record, but very close. IIRC the highest overnight temperature recorded in Finland was about 25 C, somewhere in south coast islands.

  35. Ice Swimmer says

    lumipuna @ 41

    Have you been able to sleep well in this heat? I’ve found that taking a shower and going to bed while one’s wet makes it easier to fall asleep or continue sleeping if you wake up. The skin dries fairly quickly but the hair and the beard are wet for much longer, helping to keep cool for a while.

  36. lumipuna says

    My sleep schedule is extremely broken. Thankfully, I don’t need to leave my home much, especially during daytime. Today, I took a nice walk at 4 AM.

  37. says

    I mostly look for nice structure and the ability to keep its colour.

    Aaaaand just when I got my finger mostly healed, my spinal prolapse is back with a vengeance. Went to the ER yesterday and they were very much not very helpful. I was advised to take more of the pain meds I’m already taking. I think I got pegged as “drug seeking” and not given anything more effective. Dude, I’m a public school teacher. If I want drugs, I ask my students…

  38. Jazzlet says

    Oh no, it is so frustrating that women’s reports of pain aren’t taken seriously by far too many doctors. I hope you manage to get some relief from the pain killers you do have.

  39. says

    I mean, do they even listen? So I went to my GP today, who looked at the letter from the hospital and said “so you have back pain?” and I was like “no, I most emphatically don’t have back pain. I have a spinal prolapse which manifests in an inflamed nerve down my leg”
    “So I can push here and here and here” and yes, you can push there until I bruise. Just don’t make me sit or stand for longer…
    But it is a lot better already, thankfully not as bad as the last time, when I spent a week in hospital.

  40. Jazzlet says

    Glad the spinal prolapse doesn’t seem to be as bad this time.

    Honestly it amazes me on occasion how people don’t read what is in front of them especially when they should know about it. When I was given my discharge letter on Friday, after the operation on my finger, there was a handwritten note on the top -- OPDA IJM clinic [time and date] -- I asked where this appointment was still being a bit whoozy and the nurse assured me it was at my GP’s practice. It wasn’t until I got the ‘letter’ link on my phone that I realised it meant Out Patients Department A [consultant’s] clinic, but that really ought to have been obvious to the nurse or if not she should have asked instead of giving me the wrong information. Grrr.

    And I’m beginning to think I should give up on touch typing, I’ve only got the use of my left index finger, but that and all my right hand seem to type better than all both hands.

  41. Ice Swimmer says

    Giliell @ 46

    Ouch, but good that it’s subsiding. The society can be so fucked up about pain meds. Too stingy for some people while others get them without much asking.

  42. says

    Heya, just in case anybody saw the images of the severe floodings in parts of Germany, I’m fine, my area lots of rain, but nothing as severe. A colleague’s village got flooded, but she’s fine, too. I hope Avalus and his family are OK, they’re in the same general region.

  43. lumipuna says

    I just saw the news of flooding in western Europe. Scary.

    The jet stream has been bent out of shape for weeks, with a persistent heat dome (or whatever) stuck in northeastern Europe and corresponding rain front in the west. Today we had 31.7 C, and tomorrow will be about equally hot. However, there’s a dawning promise of seasonally normal temperatures next week. Still no rain, though.

  44. Jazzlet says

    Thank you, (it was last week) the operation went well, the dressing was changed yesterday so I got to see the wound which is looking good. I got finger exercises which for some reason make me laugh.

    We’ve got sun, but I’ve been thinking about you and hoping all of you are safe, and stay safe, the power of water is terrifying. That so many lives have been lost in a developed country like Germany gives us an awful foretaste of what we all have to fear.

  45. Ice Swimmer says

    Jazzlet @ 52

    I’m glad the operation went well. Finger exercises do sound like they fit in the same category as “trigger finger massageur” (in one of the popular sketch comedies here, a long time ago, there was this gangster sketch in which a purported high-level gangster had a trigger finger massageur, a thing which struck fear in lesser crooks.) But yeah, I can see that the execises are useful.

  46. StevoR says

    Not sure if I’ve mentioned this event here already but tomorrow, well, technically today now, marks 8 years of ongoing indefinite wrongful imprisonment and torture for refugees who came by boat seeking asylum in Australia but have been locked up in offshore jails ever since. To commemorate and protest this there’s a Refugee Rally on in Adelaide starting 2 pm from Tarntanyangga / Victoria Square. Details :


    Event by Adelaide vigil for Manus and Nauru
    Tarntanyangga / Victoria Square Adelaide
    Duration: 1 hr 30 min
    Public · Anyone on or off Facebook

    ** Indefinite Detention Is Torture – 8 Years of Harm **

    8 long and destructive years will soon have passed, since when on 19th July 2013, Kevin Rudd announced that all asylum seekers coming by boat would be sent offshore, and never be settled in Australia. Over 3500 were subsequently taken offshore by force. Many of these people continue to this day to be detained, without charge, indefinitely. Quite possibly to the end of their earthly life. For 13 that has been the case, with death in detention by medical neglect, suicide, and murder. The Australian parliament (LNP with Labor support) has recently changed our laws to allow indefinite detention, without any charge, to continue. It is a law that does not apply to ‘us’, but to ‘them’. Over 1000 are still waiting for settlement – enduring and despairing. About 230 remain offshore in harsh conditions, in Port Moresby and Nauru; 70 in oppressive locked detention in Australia, 500 in community detention, and 500 on a 6 month ‘departure visa’ with nowhere to go.

    The Royal Australasian College of Physicians states:

    “Australian held (locked) detention is harmful to the physical and mental health of people of all ages in the short and long term.” *

    We have seen the expected harm unfold year by year.

    Indefinite detention without charge or trial should be anathema to anyone who has any concern for others as fellow human beings. In Adelaide on Sunday July 18th, we will remember and stand with those still suffering ongoing indefinite detention – 8 Years and still increasing. We will meet 2pm at Tarntanyangga / Victoria Square, and walk to the Vietnamese Boat People Monument (next to the River at the end of Kintore Ave), with speakers telling of the unjustifiable harm being done. Will you join us in opposing the appalling harm of indefinite detention and calling for a home for these vulnerable and suffering people?

    Source : Yes face book, sorry folks but still :

    Plus for the Physicians statement :

    There’s also been this song created by Anthea Falkenberg for the occassion :

    8 Years Of Trauma; 20 Years Of Shame

    They came across the waters,
    They came from far and wide;
    They trusted Australia
    Simply to be kind.

    8 years of trauma,
    20 years of shame.
    Uncage Australia’s heart.
    People all need the same:
    Freedom! Safety! Future!

    Each person seeking safety
    Is just like you and me
    But born in a place and time
    That threatened their safety.


    Imprisoned on offshore islands,
    Rejected from our land,
    These women, men and children
    Suffered pain no-one could stand.


    Some have been settled safely
    But a thousand still need hope.
    Please take the time to feel
    How you would in the same boat.

    8 years of trauma,
    20 years of shame.
    Uncage Australia’s heart.
    People all need the same:
    Freedom! Safety! Future!
    Freedom! Safety! Future!

    Source :

    I know a few others from Adelaide do read this blog so, if folks can, please come along and help us.

  47. says

    Yay, my contract got renewed, so now I get another year of mortgage paid. I didn’t realise how tense I was until I got it in the mail this morning and started crying with relief.

  48. lumipuna says

    Giliell -- Congrats!

    In personal news, my ulcer seems to be healing, albeit very slowly, like Voyager hinted.

    The weather has turned reasonably cool, with actually very low humidity. Next week will be again hot, though perhaps not super hot. Vegetation is really dry, and there likely won’t be much rain until the summer is gone.

  49. says

    I hope the healing continues.

    Rant incoming
    Sigh. I love Mr, and we hardly ever fight, which makes fighting even worse, but some days there’s really no alternative.
    We’ve been having problems with the pool this year. Too cold to go swimming, but very humid weather, made algae grow like mad. So he bought a biocid, but it was too late and we decided to replace the water. Only… I’d trusted him to have checked beforehand, but it turns out that when you add that stuff you can no longer just let the water soak into the ground (though I’m also blaming labelling, which should be required to say “once you put this into your pool, you must not let the water soak into the ground”). And living next to a water reserve, I take such things very serious.
    And thus started a fight in which I said “I showed you five articles now, one from the environmental organisation you’re a member of, that say you must not do this!” and him repeating that he had thought that since the stuff was heavily diluted and had already failed to kill all the algae, it was ok to pour it into the ground.
    Rinse and repeat. He’d started with a faulty premise, without checking, and when reality collided with the faulty premise he decided to keep repeating it.
    In the end we bought a pump to get the water up to the sewers. Which he has now decided is a good thing anyway because with heavy downpours becoming more frequent it’s not a bad idea to have one. WE don’t hold grudges (life’s too short for that), but it does take an emotional toll.

  50. StevoR says

    So. Today. A record amount of Greenland melted :

    We saw X-ray flash echoes from the supermassive black hole at the core of Zwicky 1 a galaxy 800 million light years away.

    Plus a year after arriving the Perseverance rover is about to take its first Martian samples -- but will still take 11 days to do so :

    Among so indefinitley near infinitely many other things.

  51. StevoR says

    In other astronomical news whilst most volcanoes on Earth are silicate ones, a small metallic asteroid may well have had iron based eruptions as Phil Plait explains here :

    Meanwhile in the sporting bubble that is F1 its statistically greatest driver who is mixed -race and dark-skinned gets booed despite getting ideal results incuding a record 101st pole as he strives for a record-extending 100th Grand Prix win by racists because, of course. :-/ :

    Oh & Aussies have been talking about this for over a hundred years :

    yet our appalling excsue for a government is yet toact on it stil

  52. StevoR says

    So Formula One is its own weird (not-so?)little bubble of a world and this may or may not have even been intentional on these driver’s parts yet for this :

    For Sebastian Vettel, Lance Stroll, Carlos Sainz and Valteri Bottas as good human beings versus the homophobic Hungarian regime. Respect. New and more respect. One of those pictures say more than moments ..

  53. lumipuna says

    I just received my fancy compression socks and got rid of the compression bandage. Thanks to summer holidays at the disability aid shop, it took 7 weeks instead of 4 or 5. OTOH, summer weather has been generally easier than winter would have been for this kind of hassle, in terms of dressing and wearing socks and shoes. Also lucky that I was already working/hiding at home during this time.

  54. Ice Swimmer says

    lumipuna @ 64

    Congrats on getting the compression hosiery at last. It seems that the summer holidays make it difficult to get many disability related things.

    I think the shop for the sight-impaired/blind people has also been closed for the summer. Luckily my blind friend has had some luck with his white cane and hasn’t needed to get a new one (even though they’re made of carbon-fibre reinforced plastic, if someone steps on the cane or trips on it, it is highly likely that the thing breaks enough to lose its ‘feel’).

  55. Jazzlet says

    Iumipuna @64
    I hope the compression socks make life easier for you.

    I know it takes a ridiculous aount of time for Mr J’s compression socks to come, he has particularly large calves and only one German brand make socks large enough. I find the whole thing rather odd as there is clearly a small market for these things yet he often waits weeks for them -- and this is in normal pre-COVID and pre-Brexit times. My guess is that the market is small so they only run the machines to make that size once a month, and if they run out you have to wait for the next run, but it seems an odd way to run a business, when the delays happen so regularly you’d hae thought someone would say “let’s up production a bit”. It annoys our pharmacist who checks the new lines of the other manufcturers periodically as he’d really like to find a more reliable source.

    My finger is now bandage free and the wound fully closed. the area around the wound is quite sensitive as for some reason all of the tough top surface of the skin around the wound area has peeled off leaving relatively tender skin that I’m trying to harden up. I have more feeling at the top of the finger beyond where the lump was than I did before the operation, which is good as I was warned I might have less feeling. The combination of the two things is making me aware of my finger in a way you aren’t normally, it’s just a little odd noticing it doing things.
    TL:DR My finger has healed well, it just feels a little odd as it’s more senstive than I am used to.

  56. lumipuna says

    Yay for all the healing fingers in the community.

    My socks are custom made to size, so I guess 7 weeks isn’t too bad. Also, publicly paid expenses etc.

    The socks fit really well, but getting them on and off takes some effort. Can’t recommend them for people with mobility issues or hand disabilities*. I even had to buy rubber-skin type gardening gloves to get a proper grip of the socks. They’re also quite warm, but thankfully the weather is now cool, and fall is coming. I look forward to skipping the socks during future summer heatwaves.

    *Or people who are extremely clumsy and accident prone. As a kid, I once somehow managed to injure my left middle finger while pulling on a regular sock -- don’t ask me how it happened. I’ve improved somewhat since then.

  57. says

    Yay for stockings!

    Yay for quick healing.

    TL:DR My finger has healed well, it just feels a little odd as it’s more sensitive than I am used to.

    It’s funny that I’m doing the same thing, just in the opposite direction: getting used to a less sensitive finger…

  58. Gelaos says

    Safe Sweden faces up to wave of women’s killings or Denmark passes law to relocate asylum seekers outside Europe. I always considered Scandinavian countries to be in the top tier regarding immigration policies, etc. But in last few years, I became more worried about possible long-term consequences of such large-scale immigration (per-capita), especially to Sweden. Not to say that immigrants aren’t used as scapegoats by lots of a**holes, but the future doesn’t seem very nice nevertheless.

  59. says

    Denmark and Sweden have been two big disappointments. Denmark by applying Nuremberg style laws, forcing people to move out of their neighbourhoods because they’re the wrong ethnicity, and Sweden by letting Covid run wild.

  60. lumipuna says

    I got the second vaccine shot yesterday, eight and a half weeks after the first one. I was initially given an appointment at 11 weeks, but they recently made it possible to reschedule it earlier, since there weren’t too many takers for first shots any more.

  61. chigau (違う) says

    I woke up at 4AM in a panic because I was convinced I had a term paper on Saddam Hussein due today. Really my last term paper was over 40 years ago and I never took a course that included him.
    What the fuck does my subconscious want?

  62. Jazzlet says

    Give it time, nerves take a long time to grow back compared to other tissues, but they do. After I had my complicated hysterectomy I had a half moon of skin, hip bone straight across to hip bone curving up to just under my tummy button, where the surface was numb, if pressed hard it felt like I’d got a double layer of thick duvet on top of it. By around three years after the operation most of the feeling was back to normal, by five years it was all back.

    Yay for getting your second jab, hope you don’t get any side effects.

    No idea, I still get the occasional dream involving the school I left nearly forty five years ago and I’ve no idea what they’re about either.
    My finger is pretty much back to normal now which is nice.

    I am being subject to heavy breathing, by Jake. He thinks it is time for his supper treat of fish skin chew. It is not, not for another fifteen minutes, I will not give in to any amount of heavy breathing.

  63. lumipuna says

    University of Helsinki has just updated its Covid-19 guidance, as semester will begin in a couple weeks. Here’s some background:

    During last summer, after a strict spring lockdown, any office workers were still required to work almost entirely remotely (when not on holidays), even though infection rates in Finland were very low in June and July. Meanwhile, people were going to bars and restaurants quite normally, and by August, infection rates were again creeping upwards. As a result, the university cautiously delayed its partial opening, which was planned for late August. Teaching started almost entirely remotely, and remote office work continued.

    At the beginning of October, partial on-site teaching and working resumed, apparently because someone at the top had realized the covid situation wasn’t going to get any better during the whole winter, so the extremely cautious approach was dropped as unfeasible. Around this time, masking finally became seriously recommended in Finnish public spaces, including at the university.

    Then, at the end of November, a surge in infections forced the university to backtrack its partial opening anyway. Masking became mandatory in university buildings. Meanwhile, restaurants remained open, albeit with various limitations, until there was another, even higher infection surge in March. Spring semester passed under lockdown, although we did manage to teach some labs.

    Around June, infections were again briefly quite low. Restaurants opened and, by July, infections began duly creeping upwards. The university’s security level was downgraded at some point, but office work was set to continue almost entirely remotely until late August. Then, we were supposed to resume partial on-site teaching and working, while probably still maintaining the mask mandate. Sound familiar?

    In recent weeks, infections have increased hugely, although since high risk people are generally already vaccinated, the situation is only mildly alarming thus far. Some mild limitations are being imposed on restaurants. Apparently, there’s hope (?) that the infections become much more easily controllable once we finish vaccinating young adults over the next couple months.

    To my slight surprise, the university now still plans to partially open on-site teaching at the beginning of semester, though office work will continue remotely. There’s the mask mandate, but anything like a vaccine mandate at the university isn’t going to happen in foreseeable future. At least last spring the university also recommended that teachers use a face shields during labs, which IMO is entirely pointless if everyone is already wearing a mask that will catch the larger droplets.

  64. Gelaos says

    Someone once said: “It happened so fast that we didn’t even had the time to be astonished.” I think this quote fits current events in Afghanistan perfectly. Out of all the 2021 bad things so far, this one is probably the most depressing. Initial succesful supression of radicals, 20-year occupation, billions of dollars, thousands of both civilian and non-civilian casualties, hopes for at least by a tiny-bit better country -- all for nothing, as everything crumbles in a manner of weeks. USA and NATO look like fools, EU is (like usual) just helpless bystander and Afghanistan is on the course back to middle-ages.

  65. lumipuna says

    We’ve had enough rain to end the drought, for the remainder of the growth season, but the rainy weather pattern seems to have just gotten started.

  66. lumipuna says

    In June, I mentioned getting the first vaccine shot exactly when 50 % of Finns were past that line. Now, nine days after my second shot, 50 % are fully vaccinated while almost 70 % are (presumably) on track to get there within a couple months. The authorities initially flouted 70 % of total population as a rough threshold for the herd immunity goal, but that was taken back long ago. With Delta, we can apparently only expect to get a partial herd immunity from hopefully a very high eventual vaccine uptake.

    Vaccination of 12 to 15 year olds has just gotten started. We should get close to 80 % if nearly all school age children (7-15) and a few of the remaining adults get the vaccine in near future. However, vaccine uptake in young adults (who are the most efficient spreaders of the virus) seems to be stalling at around 70 %. This is despite the recent surge of infections in young adults, who either are or could be partially vaccinated already.

  67. Ice Swimmer says

    lumipuna @ 79

    I think the “stalling” is pretty much due to the high amount of second shots that are given and the limited a supplies. Yesterday there was about 150 000 doses available in storage, which is enough for ca. 3-4 days. They give about10 000 -- 15 000 1st doses and 30 000 2nd doses daily (7 day running average).

    Today, about 430 000 doses are available in storage, so there must have been a Pfizer delivery. This means about 280 000 -- 300 000 doses for next week. The number of second doses could be around 25 000/day next week, which would give around 15 000 first doses/day. If the 15 000/day fails to happen, a glut of vaccine doses should be developing, but so far I’ve seen no signs of it. I’m not sure how many people get their second doses early.

    Over 400 000 doses/week should be perfectly doable if there were supplies. Two 400 000+ weeks could be coming (next week 460k doses and then 425k doses), but after them, the two next weeks are going to be only 225k/week.

  68. says

    In Germany it seems like 70% is pretty much the current limit. Vaccination for kids 12-15 has only now been recommended, and the stupid hesitation of the responsible people, combined with lots of talk about “long time risks” have confused many parents and also made them hesitant. You cannot keep talking about how Covid is no big deal for kids and young adults, and how risky the vaccine is, and then be surprised when young people aren’t getting vaccinated.

    I think the “stalling” is pretty much due to the high amount of second shots that are given and the limited a supplies. Yesterday there was about 150 000 doses available in storage, which is enough for ca. 3-4 days. They give about10 000 — 15 000 1st doses and 30 000 2nd doses daily (7 day running average).

    Germany actually has a surplus now. We’ve already made a pass at the latest delivery of Moderna, leaving them to other countries. There’s walk in vaccine centres at Ikea. We’re still not making much progress with first shots.

  69. Jazzlet says

    The UK government in it’s great wisdom is only recommending that 16 and 17 year olds along with vulnerable younger teens get vaccinated.

  70. says

    Older daughter got vaccine shot #2. Younger daughter still has 2 months to go until she turns 12. But I’m really proud of #1 and how she’s handling the whole thing. You know she’s on the spectrum, and a couple of years ago she’d rather not have ice cream than talk to the person selling it. Now she walked in there, even chatted and joked with the person vaccinating her.

  71. Ice Swimmer says

    Giliell @ 83

    Nice to hear that she has found ways to be social.

    What you told reminded me of one thing I did or actually not did. I remember being about 12 and bicycling (1 -- 2 km) to a farm to buy some fresh milk and turning back from the door since I couldn’t bring myself to open the it and go inside to ask for the milk. We were at our family’s summer cottage with my dad, who then had to take his bike and get the milk. I had visited the farm with adults, and knew the people to some extent, but still it didn’t feel right. It has made me wonder sometimes if I’m somewhere in the spectrum.

    On the other hand I had at that point been traveling by bus alone for years (to my grandparents’ places, the cottage and back) as well as gone to shops and cafés alone and attended two (all-ages) rock gigs alone (it was this band).

  72. lumipuna says

    Something curious I just noticed when looking at the contact information of the Russian embassy in Helsinki (don’t ask me why):

    There’s a staff list that names about 50 staffers (almost all men) and their spouses (excepting a few who probably don’t have one). About 12 of the spouses are named Elena, including the wife of the ambassador and three other most important people on top of the list. IDK how many Russian women in general are named Elena, but anecdotally it doesn’t come up nearly this much. Must be a workplace in-joke.

  73. Ice Swimmer says

    I talked about not seeing a glut of vaccine doses developing @80. Now I’m seeing signs of it. There are about 600 000 unused doses now. Unless the number of first doses given starts to rise quickly among 20-somethings, I’m starting to agree with lumipuna @ 79.

    lumipuna @ 85

    There are probably proper statistics in Russian about the popularity of names in Russia, but from some decade-old tourist propaganda I got the info that Elena/Yelena* is among the ten most popular female names.

    As for the contact information, you must have known the street, but yeah that isn’t enough for most purposes. For the non-Finns out there, Tehtaankatu** is the street and it is a well-known metonym for the Russian embassy. During the Cold War, it was politically beneficial for a Finnish politician to have good relations to Tehtaankatu.
    * = The transliteration Yelena is probably more phonetically correct.
    ** = Factory street, which despite the name has had very few factories. The western end of the street was supposed to go through an industrial district, but the plans changed and Eira became a residential district.

  74. lumipuna says

    I talked about not seeing a glut of vaccine doses developing @80. Now I’m seeing signs of it. There are about 600 000 unused doses now. Unless the number of first doses given starts to rise quickly among 20-somethings, I’m starting to agree with lumipuna @ 79.

    I was basically just looking at how few first doses were apparently given between late July and mid August, without considering how many were getting their second shots during that time. I heard there was some glut of vaccines in some places in July, but then they allowed people to re-schedule the second shot earlier and that probably caused a rush in second shots over the following weeks. Also, I seem to have misread the news because the portion of twice vaccinated is still below 50% of population.

    * = The transliteration Yelena is probably more phonetically correct.

    Makes sense (now that I think about it), though the list was presented in English, possibly written by someone who normally transliterates Russian to Finnish.

    Oddly enough, the embassy’s actual website has no English language section, just Russian and Finnish. Some parts of the Finnish section are just links to English translations of relevant documents, while the news/statements from Russian Foreign Ministry are also sometimes in English (otherwise in Russian). Then there’s some boilerplate information about Russia in quirky Finnish translation, and some Finland specific info. It was mildly interesting to see the official wordings and framings as relates to historical Finnish-Russian relations.

  75. says

    Today we went to my friend’s flat to look through some things, pick memorabilia and useful things.
    Turns out she had started hoarding stationary. I mean, if it had just been Harry Potter and Game of Thrones notebooks you could put it down to collection but there are like hundreds of standard college blocks and packets upon packets of post it’s. I have no idea how long that has been going on. She didn’t do that back when we still lived together.

  76. StevoR says

    Just in case things weren’t already cheery enough, sorry :

    Authorities in Cyprus are monitoring an oil slick that originated from a power plant on Syria’s Mediterranean coast and could soon affect the island.Syrian state media said last week there had been a spill from the plant, which is inside the Baniyas oil refinery. Satellite imagery showed that the slick spread north along the Syrian coast before moving eastwards towards Cyprus.

    Also rather worrying news although it is in the ISS’es oldest module and seems it can be fixed :

    In better still news (?) this new technology seems to have potential :

    Certainly seems like a step up from plutonium fusion to me albeit still not any “silver bullet.”

  77. Ice Swimmer says

    I had a online job interview today and will have another tomorrow.

    So, to recuperate, I went to this public sauna. The owner has a small dog, that likes to come to the hot room (he’s small enough to fit under the door). The dog did just that, hopped on second-highest bench and started to lick my (sweaty) legs (between the knee and the foot) and then proceeded to lick other guys’ legs. Apparently this happens regularly, but for me this was a first. I’ve never been licked by a dog in a sauna.

    As I’m slightly afraid of dogs, I’m a bit apprehensive (besides, he’s getting a bit too touchy-feely for my Finnish human sensibilities), but definitely not freaking out, even if I had a hard time suppressing the laughter as the tongue tickles my ankles.

    So, I was a salt lick for a diminutive canine. How was your day?

  78. says

    Ice Swimmer
    Good luck for the job interviews. The encounter with the doggie sounds adorable, though the owner really ought to ask people if they’re ok with it. Alas, I’m always of two minds: I love doggie snuggles, but I also want dog owners to make sure their dogs don’t approach strangers (because not everybody likes doggie snuggles)

  79. Ice Swimmer says

    Giliell @ 91

    Thank you! I guess the interview went quite OK today, we’ll see how the things will turn out.

    I don’t know if the owner will tell about the dog to new customers. Regulars and people who frequent public saunas (I’m in the latter category) know about the dog, but of course, tourists and others probably not. When the owner asked if I’ve visited before I said I have. However, the dog hasn’t been as exhuberant with his tongue before. I didn’t hear what the owner said to the foreign guy who was in a sauna for the first time in his life.

  80. says

    Ice Swimmer
    And thus it became lore in a small remote village that Finish saunas hasn’t a small dog and that to be licked by the dog is considered a sign of good luck.
    20 years later the third cousin of the original guy travels to Finland only to find out that the custom had sadly been lost.

  81. lumipuna says

    And thus it became lore in a small remote village that Finish saunas have a small dog and that to be licked by the dog is considered a sign of good luck.

    Good luck or bad luck, depending on whether you like that kind of thing.

    This summer, when it was super hot I tried to sleep naked, but there was also a housefly hanging around in my home and it kept coming to lick my apparently tasty skin and it was tickly and super annoying. These are the kind of flies that are very difficult to swat because they dodge so quickly.

  82. says

    Now we get somewhat normal weather, not too hot, not too wet. Now, when the growing season nears its end. These last few years the weather is completely out of whack, it is either boiling hot or it is cold and it pours and pours without end.

    @lumipuna, I had to sleep naked too when it was very hot for a few nights in August. I had no problem with flies, but it got drafty in the night, my right shoulder got cold despite the heat and it hurts still to this day. One of the boons of getting older, I guess.

  83. says

    We’ve been having amazing weather, just as school started again. And since the government is giving us a few scraps, we could hire a guy who does nature pedagogic so I got to spend the day with two donkeys, a puppy, and a ton of excited kids in the woods and will get to repeat this three times more.

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