June 2004

June 30, 2004

“Fiction in a hurry”

Citypages’s story on Plain Layne, including an interview with Odin Soli, fills in some gaps in the story.

“People have asked at what point readers began to suspect that Plain Layne was make-believe, and the answer is, from the very beginning.”


June 29, 2004

Be still for long

Unable to settle, it feels good to have something different on the horizon.


After work

I stand in front of the Helsinki Railway Station, confused. I have just left work, my first day in an office in almost a year. What is it that I usually do after work? It’s not that I can’t remember, it’s that I don’t know.


TV:stä tulossa

Kun yksittäisistä tv-ohjelmista lähetetään lehdistötiedotteita, on lähetykset kai syytä katsoa. Sekä BBC että CBS ovat haastatelleet ex-presidentti Bill Clintonia. Haastattelut esitetään:

  • ke 7. heinäkuuta, klo 19.05 (TV1)
  • su 11. heinäkuuta, klo 19.00 (Nelonen)

Silmään tarttui myös uutinen, että Luupäiden luoja Jeff Smith saapuu vieraaksi Helsingin Sarjakuvafestivaaleille 18.-19. syyskuuta.

  • Kottke redesigns, puts web designers to shame. It’s not just how it looks, it’s how it works. Note to self: emulate shamelessly.
  • There’s some great stuff on Emma’s link list. Check out the fabulous Youyesyou and the faintly Chris Ware like Supermundane.

June 28, 2004

Work more for free and don’t lose your job!

Siemens won’t be moving production to Hungary after more than 4000 workers agreed to work five more hours a week without additional pay. Hooray for capitalism!


The Plain Layne story

I first heard about the Plain Layne story from Kottke, who has done an exemplary job summing up what’s happened. There are, of course, links to the various twists and turns, such as a discovery and a confession.

Plain Layne, as a hoax, is in no way wrong to me. But then again, I’ve never read her weblog—I might feel different if I had, and felt betrayed. While presenting yourself as someone you’re not isn’t nice (and I mean when interacting with other people, not when writing a journal or a weblog), it still seems funny—all this outrage over assumed identities—considering how often it was said in the early days of the Net that one of the great things about it was that it would afford people new ways to explore their identities.

Remember, on the Internet, nobody knows you’re a dog.

My only gripe is that Plain Layne’s weblog has been taken off the Net. Why? So the cat’s out of the bag, and the journal’s been discontinued—this isn’t a reason to remove it from the Web. Unfortunately, there doesn’t seem to be much of it archived, either.

I support the right to write fictive journals without disclaiming them as such. But if such a creative endeavour is undertaken, isn’t it artistically reprehensible to take it down once you’ve been outed?


Some new blogs

Some good-looking blogs I’ve come across recently: Airbag Industries, Simplebits, PixelChatter, Unreal Travels, most of them found via Cameron Moll’s “wicked worn” tutorial. I like the wicked worn look (despite the name), but I suspect the style will age quickly. No pun intended.


Of boredom

Boredom is not so much about having nothing to do at present. Boredom is more about the unlikeliness of this changing in the immediate future.


June 25, 2004


So I called the nurse yesterday. All three tests came back negative. I am sexually transmitted disease and strep throat free. The nurse, curiously, said: “You’re clean in every way.”

Last night I dreamed I had lung cancer.

(Note: The date for this entry was mangled in an update to the metadata. I’m note sure what the original date was exactly, but it was around there.)


June 24, 2004

We take care of our members!

With a smile on her face and a telephone headset, this lady looking at Rasputin’s pickled member could be model from a photo on the site of a webhosting company.


June 23, 2004

Low-impact Garfield

The other day, while talking about comics, Emmi said: “Garfield can’t be anyone’s favorite cartoon character.”

I don’t remember exactly why this came up, we probably saw a movie poster in the metro, but there might actually be an explanation proving Emmi right. Slate has a story on how Jim Davis made Garfield purposely bland. Crafted as a purely commercial cipher, the secret of Garfield’s long lifespan has been that he doesn’t elicit strong emotions, which could lead risk overexposure.


June 18, 2004

Thursday night

Uzva and Manogurgeil played at Stella Star last night, but we never made it up from our table to see them. They sounded okay, though.


June 16, 2004

Getting tests done

I went to check out my sore throat today. The nurse looked at my throat and said it didn’t look like I had strep. I didn’t think I did, but my girlfriend had it last week and Karkki swears I gave her strep three times last fall. I don’t believe in visiting the doctor all the time.

I asked the nurse about STD tests. I’ve never been tested. I’ve had unprotected sex with multiple partners. This is stupid, I know. The only thing I’ve cared has been not getting anyone pregnant.

“Do have any reason to be tested? Do you have any symptoms?” the nurse asked.

“Well, I’ve never been tested,” I said.

“Have you had unprotected sex? With partners you don’t know?”



“Uh, yeah. Last fall.”

“So a good six months ago. Have you experienced any changes... down there?”


She then ran down a list of STDs (syphilis, gonorrhea, chlamydia, condyloma and HIV), describing their symptoms as applicable. What I found amusing was how dismissive she was of some of the diseases. “These are rare in Finland,” of syphilis and gonorrhea, and “HIV is rare in instances of heterosexual activity, and is a problem mainly with drug users.” Was she trying to talk me out of getting tested?

In the end I ended up getting a throat swap and giving blood and urine samples. I was at the clinic just over a half an hour, a strangely painless experience. I call in for the results next week.


June 13, 2004

Essential applications

A list of essential applications for Windows. I don’t know all the software, but I agree with most of the list. I prefer Tiny Firewall over ZoneAlarm.

Having had a few headaches with spyware, I downloaded WinPatrol (the first spyware-buster I’ve seen that hasn’t had serious integrity issues).


June 10, 2004

June 7, 2004

Real life is sponsored

When real life looks like an ad. The caption reads: “Family members of a kidnapped and murdered girl take pictures of the dead bodies of the three men convicted and hung for the crime in Saudi Arabia.”