Farewell, my dearest bike

I am an idiot, so yesterday I left my bike overnight at the train station where I have my garden. Today my bike was gone. It looked like hell and barely functioned normally, so I really wonder if it was worth it for the thieves to break the two locks to try to sell it.

It was stolen once before by some stupid kids in Orust East Side, who cut up the saddle and tyres and dumped it in a ditch, where a nice old lady found it and responded to the notice we had posted. I posted a note now, too, although I doubt anyone will care to respond.

I had that bike for 16 years, in Hannover, Finland, Sweden and now in Berlin, and it was like an extension of my body. Everyone I borrowed it to hated it, because it had weird quirks that probably made it uncomfortable and even dangerous to ride if you didn’t know it very well. It was like a difficult horse that only a very special person can ride. I have been kind of that person with horses, so maybe it’s not so strange that I loved this bike. It was really fast, too. :3

A few years ago, outside Lund, Sweden, when it was considerably less rusty:

My parents bought me that bike in Hannover, when I was 13 or so, after my previous bike had been stolen. There was another bike in the store with the same price tag, a “better” bike that was on sale and had a white and mint green paint job. My parents wanted me to take that bike, but I refused. The salesman and my parents sighed and rolled their eyes. But I wanted the black bike. I wonder how many years the fugly mint green bike would have held up.

The only significant problem my bike had since then was that the chain wore out just three years ago, after my stupid boyfriend had talked me into oiling it. Which, as I later found out, you should never do unless you also clean it very thoroughly – otherwise the oil will help the dirt and sand move into the chain and break it, which is exactly what happened to me.

My next bike will certainly have a hard time filling its shoes. (Tyres?)

Dahlewitz trip

Bauwagen 3

So Ilan actually seems to agree that getting a house outside the city could be a good idea. (Maybe he’s gotten nervous about my fantasies of refurbishing a construction trailer, like the one in the photo above …?)

We went to look at this fantastic old house today. It’s in pretty bad shape, and, most importantly, it is way too huge for us, so we aren’t going to buy it, after all … But it was fun to visit it nevertheless.

(Continue reading …)

I survived Stockholm SPX10

I wrote a long report about it in Swedish for the Epix blog, with lots of photos, too. You can check it out over there.


(Photo by Stef Gaines)

I sold my self-published comics zines and also represented my publisher Epix, sharing a table with Ainur and the Evil Mochi Dummy. My zines were perhaps a bit overshadowed by my “real book”, but that’s okay, I guess.

As always it was great fun, and since the festival just keeps getting better and better every year, it was more fun than ever before. Not least because I personally know more and more comix industry people every year, so I’m not nervous about going there anymore, like I was the first time I attended and didn’t know anyone.

Lots of amazing events and epic meetings took place, but they were all overtrumped by the totally astonishing discovery I made when the festival was over and we were packing our stuff: a secret admirer had left their underwear under my chair!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! With pubic hair and everything!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Fancy underwear, too.

So I got a nice frame for them and will hang them in a special place on my wall. ♥

Thank you, Mr. Secret Admirer.

* * *

I got that frame from the Euro-Flohmarkt on Schönhauser Allee, near U2 Vinetastraße. It’s a really nice place, a big yard inside an old factory complex, with all kinds of crap, from millions of mugs over tools, rusty sewing machines and coal stoves to really very nice antique furniture and old doors, with very decent prices. There is an invisible doggie behind a wall who barks if you come too close to the wall. The people who run it are really nice, too, and when I also bought a pair of coffee cups the guy noticed that one of them was broken, and went to find me two even nicer ones.

I first tried to find a frame at the hipster heaven at the Sunday market in Mauerpark, but the only frames in the right size I could find came with stupid paintings or lithographies and were priced at 25-50 € … Nooooo.

I actually noticed that nice junkyard yesterday when I was one of the 10.000 people – antifa and union activists, local politicians and not least regular residents of this neighbourhood, who drove out the couple hundreds of Neo-Nazis who had organized a demonstration on Bornholmer Straße, on Labour day of all days. They had planned to march about six kilometers, but after only a few hundred meters and massive opposition from counterdemonstrators and residents of the surrounding buildings, the police decided to turn them back and escort them out of Berlin.

Kein Sex mit Nazis

Police doggie

Heroes

I have never been this proud to live in Prenzlauer Berg.

Tinet’s Amazing Mold Bingo!

We’ve had some problems with mold in our apartment this year, with the very cold winter. There were some previous occurrences, as well … Who knows if or when there will be some new mold somewhere again?

Out of frustration I am now making it into a contest where you can win original art drawn by me!

Background:

Basically the mold has been here latently all the time, but it has pretty much been our own cluelessness that has brought it out in bloom. When I moved in here I did not know that you should never put anything too close to cold outer walls. I piled some cardboard boxes under my book shelf, and they nicely insulated the cold wall against any warm, dry air from the room, allowing a huge mold colony to grow.
The last winter (2009/2010) was exceptionally cold, and we didn’t heat enough in the bathroom and the kitchen, so the cold outer wall became moist and grew mold. As for the mold on our southern windows, it might be because we have kept the curtains drawn way too much. Once in a while it’s mysteriously gone, but there is sometimes a surveillance camera on the opposite building that might or might not be directed straight at us, as well as offices filled with bored guys who would like to watch me do morning exercises and change my clothes, and the glaring sun bothers me when I work.

Of course, our building is not exactly in perfect shape. We live on the top floor, where the crumbling firewall, which might not have been worked on since 1946 or so, is exposed to the cold northwest. In the attic there are holes straight through it. On the inside, that wall has been covered with “insulating wallpaper” and thin styrofoam. But if they don’t stick properly to the wall, pockets of cold, moist air can easily form between the wallpaper/styrofoam and the naked wall. And they do not stick properly to our walls.

So far any mold has not come back again to a place I have removed it from. I have previously used an “organic” mold killer called Jati Schimmelpilzentferner (that you have to order from the pharmacy), and most recently a chlorine-based one from the hardware store OBI. After applying the mold killer, I scraped off any wallpaper and plaster that was affected, and painted the naked wall with special moisture regulating paint for bathroom and kitchen areas.

Anyway, if you’d like to get a chance at winning some original art by me, please study the floor plan of our apartment closely and place your bet!

So what am I doing right now?

Right now I am at my mum’s place again, working as usual (ah, the benefits of freelancing – you can go anywhere as long as you have Internet and your laptop). And skiing.

The fuzz in the corner is mum's sleeve.

The thing is that I needed to apply for a new passport, and since it costs 1000 Swedish crowns more if you get it at a Swedish embassy abroad, I might just as well spend that approximate amount of money on going to Sweden and enjoying the winter properly in the meantime. Ilan happened to attend the Pixelvärk festival in Gothenburg, so it all worked out perfectly.

And we get to hang out with mum’s ketteh Mr. Yellow:

Mr. Yellow checks where we've been.

On Tuesday, when there are decent bus connections (as opposed to the weekend), I’ll also check out the  Art Comics Life exhibition about contemporary Nordic comics at the Watercolour Museum in Skärhamn, since it’s right here on the next island to the south.

Too bad that all the ‘happenings’ at that exhibition were on the weekend. Mum lives in the middle of the forest with no car, so we rely on the bus connections.
It’s not difficult at all, because besides the regular buses, there is a really nice “local bus” service that’s more like some kind of collective taxi – you order it the day before, and then it picks you up at your front door and takes you to town, and picks you up again two hours later. The bus drivers carry your groceries for you and help you with anything else if need be. It’s mainly elderly people who use the service, although it’s open to anyone. So when I go shopping with mum here it’s us two and then a bunch of happy grannies and grandpas in a minibus. The bus drivers are really sweet, and they are incredible drivers, driving up and down these tiny snowy roads in the hills like it’s nothing.

Frozen lake

See more photos from Orust on my Flickr.

Fashion blogging (first and last time ever)

Ilan and I went to this fashion party (it was the fashion week in Berlin) where they had set up a photo session where all the guests could have photoz taken of their mad threadz combinationz skillz. The only reason we went was that Ilan’s friends Meneo were playing at the party. But the location itself – the Villa in Friedrichshain, a former brewery building, was pretty interesting too.

Photo by Iwo Gospodinow at fashionfreaks

After the shoot they tried to ask what brands I was wearing (they asked everybody about that). I said “No brands, all home made.” Here is the long answer that I did not give at that occasion …

Tinet – “Tatar swineherd at the local Kolkhoz”
Fur hat: dress uniform, Soviet government issue.
Wool jacket: home made by me.
Bathrobe: home made (?), inherited from my great-grandma Varma, 50’s or 60’s.
Skirt: home made by unknown person, found at thrift store.
Leg warmers: inherited from my mum.
Boots: vintage 80’s, any labels long since worn off.
Not visible: knitted bright red shorts made by mum, thrifted undershirt, panties from some Finnish department store I have forgotten the name of (vintage 90’s!!).
Okay, I guess I could have named H&M as a brand, because my wool-mix tights that are full of holes, two of my earrings and also my socks were bought there in the early 2000’s.
Ah, and I’m also wearing a cloth pad from Randumosity. Whee!

Severiina – “Rebellious youth”
Kheffiyeh: unknown make.
Spiked collar: thrifted, with a ribbon from a Sachertorte box and a metal chain found in the street.

Ilan’s outfit was even better, like he’d come straight out of a Moebius comic, and our Spanish friends were certainly some of the best dressed people at the party, just a bit more understated.

Severiina had a ball – she really enjoyed Meneo’s concert, and she was even invited to dance on the stage with those two wild Spanish boys!

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