Category Archives: Ramblings

The Most Precious Resource of Them All

I have finally figured out what is the most precious resource in Finland. It’s toilet. It’s almost ridiculous to what lengths various instances are prepared to go to stop un-worthy people of using their toilets. Even if you are a customer at a shopping centre, you’re faced with the humiliating task of asking for a token from someone so you can use the toilet. If you are not a customer, you pay!

Some even go further than that. The biggest movie theater complex in Helsinki has their toilets secured with a  keypad. The passnumber is written on all the movietickets. Although it does make you feel slightly jamesbondish, that tight a guarding of your precious toilets makes it all feel a bit weird.

You have to ask why this is the case, why lock down the toilets like that? I think it’s another form of tragedy of the commons. If everybody else doesn’t allow anyone to use their toilet, then everyone and whatever side-effects they might bring, real or imaginary, will pile up on the few that do allow it. Everybody knowing this, will just relieve themselves to the nearest gateway.

Monday Night Ramblings

Hello, good evening, how are you? I’m fine thanks.

The best way to stay relevant in Gooogle searches is to keep on producing content. As it’s just me and the bots, it really doesn’t matter what the content is, so, as usual, this is me leaving the here and now on a tangent.

I read yesterday that Chris Robertson had died. He won an oscar in 1968 as a mentally challenged man in the film Charly. The film was based (faithfully as I recall) on Daniel Keyes’ novel Flowers for Algernon. I remember being rather impressed with the novel as well as the film. In the story, Charly receives an experimental procedure that makes his intelligence rise first to a normal level and then high above normal. He goes through life, from where it had stopped for him, in an accelerated pace (e.g. finally understands that the men in the bar weren’t friendly but making fun of him, falling in love).

Of course, in a Hollywood film like this, this can’t be the case for good. The experiments effects subside and Charly recedes to his previous level of intelligence. Despite its premise (a procedure that improves intelligence, albeit briefly) for this lowly way to solve a “what-if” scenario I would be hesitant to call the story Sci-fi. For a counter-example how to solve the premise (and be Sci-fi), see Isaac Asimov’s Lest We Remember.