Monthly Archives: February 2009

An unexpected honour

Fishing in Utopia, already entered for the Oondatje Prize, has just to my astonishment been long-listed for the Orwell prize for political writing. Given that the other candidates include Patrick Cockburn, Ahmed Rashid, Phillipe Sands and Tony Judt I don’t … Continue reading

Posted in Literature, Sweden | 6 Comments

Sisters, not parent and child

An interesting and important point from John Barton’s essay on conceptions of the afterlife in the current TLS (not online): Jews and Christians do not of course believe the same things, but the structures of the two faiths are much … Continue reading

Posted in God, Journalism | 3 Comments

Who put up the money for The Pirate Bay

I haven’t seen it mentioned anywhere in the English language press that the man who put up the money for the Pirate Bay has a remarkably unsavoury past, straight out of Stieg Larsson. Carl Lundström inherited a fortune from crispbread, … Continue reading

Posted in Net stories, Sweden | 13 Comments

Wiley Interscience

… may sodomise themselves with spiky reindeer antlers. I am paying their exorbitant charges for article reprints: $34.44 with VAT; and each one comes with the following boilerplate: %(loony)IMPORTANT: You now have 24-hour access to this content. Access to this … Continue reading

Posted in Blather, Journalism, Science without worms | 10 Comments

New and noted from PLOS

I came across this when looking for a report about empathy in mice: The mouse empathy story turns out to be of rather more lasting interest. I had been going to use it as an example of sloppy journalism: the … Continue reading

Posted in Blather, Literature, Science without worms | Comments Off on New and noted from PLOS

Darwinism as religion

One reason I am not writing much here is that on top of everything else I have been sent fourteen (at last count) books on Darwin to review. Well, fifteen, counting the hardback Origin of Species which turned up this … Continue reading

Posted in Blather | 10 Comments

National Character

Not to stereotype or anything but I have just had my first piece of German blog spam and it’s wonderfully fake-professorial: two paragraphs analysing the performances of different sorts of fund in Frankfurt last year. This is illustrated with lots … Continue reading

Posted in Blather | 1 Comment

Nature notes

It was almost my birthday today, so we ate lunch at the Three Horseshoes in Madingley, which just gets better and better. What I liked best this time was a lemon sorbet which tasted of all the different smells that … Continue reading

Posted in Blather, Pictures | 2 Comments

Book Search

If this list is Google’s idea of the history books we might want to read on our mobile phones, Amazon can breathe easy. Five books are listed. One purports to be the memoirs of Napoleon; two are by those well … Continue reading

Posted in Blather, Literature, Net stories, nördig | 4 Comments

Random resumption

I know I have written nothing here for the last month. I don’t think that’s good. It started off as a consequence of Guardian blogging, where I felt that I had to turn everything that occurred to me into a … Continue reading

Posted in Blather, Journalism, Sweden, Travel notes | 8 Comments