Thoughts

2015-09-15: Any educated person ought to be able to speak at least three languages: The language of his or her ethnic group, the dominant language of his or her country and, for international communication, English. It may, of course, happen that two or even all three of these languages coincide, but you can't count on it. (In my case all three are separate.)

2015-05-24: The trouble with time is that it runs. When you learn that 7 * 19 = 133 or that a lithium atom contains 3 protons, you can expect these facts to be true forever. But when you look at a clock and see that the time is 11:42, this will soon be false. (This is, of course, much the same thing as in my thought from 2013-03-18.)

2014-09-01:Optimism and idiocy are not the same thing. But sometimes it's hard to see the difference.

Summer 2014, inspired by reading about the French Revolution
Typically revolutions go like this: First the revolutionaries rise against the old order, and a shitload of people gets killed. Then, if they win, they start fighting among themselves, and a shitload of people gets killed. Finally some faction wins and starts getting rid of everybody it doesn't like (such as members of the losing factions, surviving representatives of the old order, people who are too uppity, people whose property or wives and daughters the new leaders want, people with the wrong ancestors, people who wear spectacles -- as in Cambodia under Pol Pot -- etc.), and a shitload of people gets killed. End result: Three shitloads of people get killed and the survivors are less free than before.
Certainly there are exceptions, but this pattern is common enough to be considered the usual course of a revolution.

2013-03-18
Being old: The days run away too fast for me to get a good grip on them.

Older stuff (This contains some of my less gloomy notes from my youth, but some of it is pretty downbeat anyway. Read it only if you don't mind that.)

1968-05-08:
A nuclear war that extinguished all life would at least solve the problem of tooth decay.

1969-03-25:
There's one thing at which I'm superbly skillful, namely being lazy and doing absolutely nothing useful.

1969-07-06:
Loving inanimate objects has the advantage that they don't reject one's love.

The Universe couldn't care less about anything.

1969-09-17:
A bicycle is a strange vehicle: The motor, the control system and at least most of the payload are combined in a detachable and, when necessary, replaceable module.

1969-12-06 (the 52nd anniversary of Finland's independence):
Independence = the freedom to make one's own mistakes instead of having someone else's mistakes forced on one.

1970-03-18:
So long as there is hope, there is impatience.

Wasastjerna's extension of Murphy's First Law: Anything that can't go wrong will go wrong anyway.

1970-06-01:
Is it really a good idea to know oneself? Life gets boring if you can't surprise yourself.

1970-06-27:
Ideologies are at best approximations of the truth, and no approximation is valid in all cases.

1970-07-26:
I've been vaccinated against religion. (The vaccine was Christianity.)

Eternal life is too frightening a prospect to face.

1970-07-28:
A person who lies awake at night, thinking about suicide: A sleepless dream about a dreamless sleep.

1970-09-06:
Life: The situation is catastrophic but not serious.

1970-09-23:
May the Devil take all red tape! It's probably his invention to begin with.

1971-06-11:
Eat, drink and be merry, because tomorrow you may not be in a mood for it.

1971-06-18:
Comparison of 'crazy': crazy -crazier - optimistic.