lördag, november 17, 2007

Therapy for the Count and Countess in Figaro

The Gothenburg Opera have started a series of presentations including some 'therapy' before the opera performances.

This time it's in connection with 'The Marriage of Figaro' ('Le Nozze di Figaro...') where the opera house also invited a psycho therapist to analyse the problems between the Count and the Countess.
Will the singers sing or act better after this? Judge for yourselves if you have the chance.
In Stockholm one also practice introductions to the opera performances but not yet with psycho therapists - thank God!

(Photo poster copied from:: www.seriesam.se)

Backa theatre

A new theatre is inaugurated in Gothenburg today.
It's the so called 'Backa theatre' and their ensemble who now can use a new building for their theatre performances.

They are celebrating this with three performances all of which are based on 'Crime and Punishment' by Fyodor Dostoyevsky with Raskolnikov in the center of course.
The three plays use the same scenography (stage design), the same costumes and partly the same actors but have different kinds of intonation and are directed to different ages.

(Photo Backa Teater copied from: http://www.stadsevent.se/files/location/jpg/52c368e97e6e89329c4236b1f9285abe/0.jpg)
(Picture book 'Crime and Punishment copied from: http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-7MdUC8h8CEc/TZrNU8b_UEI/AAAAAAAABAs/pquiOxeavQk/s1600/1122.gif)

Female discrimination?

Female company owners get less support from the Swedish state than men.
Men is getting governmental support in a variety of ways and also greater amount of money when supported financially.
It's the Swedish Agency for Economic and Regional Growth that have made a survey published in one of our newspapers in Sweden.
Two explanations:
1. Women are generally more cautious when seeking a loan and are also running other sorts of companies than men.
2. I haven't read the report but if the latter is true one maybe have to take a look at the benefit system to see if one can change it in some way.

Volvo in trial in France

Tuesday 13th of November, a legal process started in France. A state prosecutor is putting Volvo, a driver and the French retailer of Volvo cars on trial for an accident in 1999 when a woman killed two children when she couldn't stop the car. This was according to the woman due to problems with the brakes.
This was a Volvo 850 combi, 1996 model, and she has all the time claimed that she couldn't use the brakes as the pedal became stiff and impossible to use.
Volvo on the other hand of course state that they have investigated the car and have not being able to find any problems with the brakes.


(Photo copyright: http://mybangladesh.net)
The problems in Bangladesh after the tropical cyclon are tremendous. More than 900 fatalities are registred and now the authorities trie to find information concerning the remote parts of the country.

In connection to this catastroph (climate changes?) - one of many in this region - I heard something the other day that made me wonder concerning how easily we (or I) forget things.
In 1990 or -91 there were a cyclon like this in Bangladesh killing more than 100 000 people according to the figures I heard. In 1970 there were another cyclon in Bangladesh then killing more than 500 000 people!
I have forgotten this and that's a shame.
If we compare to the terrorist attack in the United States - 9/11 2001 - people will continue talking about this for a long time but when it comes to areas like this, it's - as always - less interesting.
Because they are not like us in the West? Because they die in great numbers anyway due to poverty or diseases?
Whatever the reason is I think it could be appropriate to remind ourselves of these catastrophies from time to time.

What we can do? Send money to organizatons working in this area or engage ourselves personally. It's up to each and everyone to decide.
By no means do I defend myself or suggest that I do more than others. Not at all. I have given money to different projects from time to time but that is all.

To discuss and talk about the problems for people in these regions is one way of focusing on more urgent problems than those we in the developed countries sometime tend to focus on.

Climate change

(Photo copyright: http://iarnoticias.com)

The Secretary General of the United Nations, Ban Ki-Moon, make a sharp warning concerning the climate changes and he urge countries to act immediately, before it's to late.
Preceeding a new report on climate change he writes in The International Herald Tribune that the world is on the verge of a natural catastroph.

Today the Interngovernmental Panel on Climate Change present their new report in Valencia, Spain. Preceeding this report Ban Ki-Moon says that the climate changes are principally and foremost our own fault.
According to him however there are very few people that fully understands the seriousness and how urgent the problem is.
He also claims that the climate changes can be stopped if everyone make an effort.

The discussion among so called experts has been going on for years and meanwhile not least the Western world continues to live in the same way as before, taking few initiatives to a radically changed lifestyle.
Today I feel that most scentists agree to that there are great changes taking place in the climatological development.
However there still are some scientists who engage in pseudo discussions as I would like to call them.
For example: Some scientists still argue to and fro concerning if the problems we are experiencing mainly is due to natural fluctuations in the climate or to our lifestyle as such.
I think this discussion is superfluous.
We don't have to be scientists/experts to understand that the way of life in the West and in other developed countries in the world have negative impact on nature. To what extent and how long it will take before it affect us is totally irrelevant. It has already affected great parts of the world and not least in some poor countries with a climate that already before these changes were harsh.

The relevant questions are:
In what way does our lifestyle affect the nature? Negatively or positively. Negatively!
Can nature exist without us? Yes.
Can we exist without nature or natural resources? Not today and surely not within a near future.
If we would reduce the amount of cars and other vehicles run on fuel that discharge carbon dioxide, would that lead to better consequences for our environment and our health? Yes.
Of course someone could argue that this depends on what we replace these vehicles with but generally speaking a reduction of carbon dioxide is of course something positive for us and for nature as such.
We can't wait until scientists find a fuel that solely let's out steam - even though this has existed according to many reports.

Can we change our way of life? Yes.
Do we want to? This is the main problem. People often talk about the environment and love to breathe fresh air, swim in clean oceans and so on but don't seem inclined to make an effort doing anything about it.

Emissions trading is one way even though I question its efficiancy. It could be perceived as a way to clean the private or corporate conscience. However when travelling with civil aviations one has the possibility to trade emissions but in a survey in Swedish radio very few knew that they could do so. Some said that they found it to complicated!

Our Minister for Agriculture, Eskil Erlandsson, said in a interview the other day concerning the problems with Methane gas from cattle, that he thought it better that the scientists found an answer to the problems with this than us trying to reduce our meat consumtion.
This is of course very unwisely spoken. To reduce our meat consumtion does not mean that everyone has to become a vegetarian like me. There are also a lot of problems of other sorts when it comes to eating meat.
To produce one beef one have to use 5 000 liters of water and as we all know clean water is something very rare in many parts of the world leading to diseases and death to many millions of people. But who care?

I think one have to shut down the scientists who still argue that we can't be shure if the climate changes are mainly caused by us or by nature as such.
We have to act and by doing so we won't lose anything important in life. By not acting we could lose our natural habitat and for the poor people in the world living in regions that will become warmer, the development is radically changing for the worse.

fredag, november 16, 2007

Delphinium and Asplunds library

The proposal called 'Delphinium' won the competition concerning the extension of the Municipal Library in Stockholm, also called Asplunds library after its architect, Erik Gunnar Asplund.

A link to pictures of the winning proposal:


onsdag, november 14, 2007

Astrid Lindgren 100 years today!

Today it's one hundred years since Astrid Lindgren (click to see how this i celebrated in Sweden) was born. This is celebrated in different parts all over Sweden. Of course they also celebrate her birthday in her hometown Vimmerby (with information about the celebration in the rest of the world as well) in the southern parts of Sweden (Småland).
A garland of flowers with one hundred roses where placed on her grave in Vimmerby.

Somewhere in Sweden (I don't remember where right now) they put up a show with 'Pippi Longstocking' in Arabic. When doing so one found that the song Pippi sings is translated into Arabic but not the text in it's entirety. They then had to engage a teacher to translate the text before putting up this show. They where all convinced that this text had been translated into Arabic as it has been translated into so many other languages, but no.

Strike among stage hands/-workers


We heard some days ago that there was a strike among stage workers at Broadway. This means that the tourists and other interested visitors to the theatres have to find something else to do. Both 'Mamma Mia', 'The Phantome of the Opera' and other musicals are cancelled.
This is the end of the three months of negotiations preceding this strike. Not so succesful negotiations as it seems. There are however 'strike free zones' (see the link).

Bether wages and other benefits are the demands. I can imagine, especially tourists not living in New York, are being very dissapointed. I heard a woman from another state in the US complaining on radio and she said that this might be the last time she visits New York and she had hoped to see one of the shows (don't remember which one).

It's of course easier for those living in the Apple. On the other hand, why shouldn't the stage workers go on strike. I imagine their wages are low and other benefits also. This compared not least to the most famous artists performing on Broadway.

In Stockholm we awaited a concert with Barbara Streisand but she cancelled. I have a friend who wanted to see her performance but after she cancelled she bought a ticket to Meatloaf instead (no comparisons) but he cancelled!
Bad luck or nonchalant behaviour from the artists?

söndag, november 11, 2007

Strike among screen writers

(Photo copyright: http://blog.pairwise.com)

Tim Robbins vs Arnold Schwarzenegger is an upcoming match in California.
The Governor has declared that he wants to mediate in order to make this conflict come to an end.

I haven't seen any of the shows affected by this strike lately but now they are not broadcasting them anymore. Jay Leno and the other talk show hosts can't manage without these men and women making them what they are.

Well I can't say that it's a loss to the world if Leno and his colleagues or opponents can't go on the air. What do you think?