Toxic Elephant

Don't bury it in your back yard!

Finally, B'stilla

Posted by matijs 30/10/2006 at 21h36

More than ten years after my only trip to Morocco, I have finally had the pleasure of eating B'stilla. Amazing! It's sweet, hearty, rich, succulant and crunchy.

What I wanted to try but found hard to actually order in Morocco -- as I recall, few restaurants served it, and if they did it had to be ordered a day or so in advance -- I can now get right here in Amsterdam, at a restaurant just a short bikeride away.


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Resolution Evaluation

Posted by matijs 15/07/2006 at 15h13

We’re now more than halfway through the year 2006, so it’s about time to evaluate the status of our new year’s resolutions. Now I realize many people give up on them by the time februari comes around. This is because they think a resolution should be followed all year, instead of being something to strive for all year. That way lies failure, clearly. And it’s also a kind of lazyness: “Oh, it’s now the second of januari, and I’ve already smoked a cigarette/forgot to call my mother/killed a kitten, might as well smoke/not call my mother/kill kittens all year.” If that’s your attitude, resolutions are dead cheap. Lazy bastards.

Anyway, on to my resolutions. Let’s see:

  • Answer all relevant e-mail within a reasonable time.

Well, that’s going pretty badly. Friend requests from cute orkutians, praise for msgconvert, ex-colleages who want to keep in touch, they all go unanswered. Of course I’ve been busy, but that’s really no excuse. My humblest apologies to you all.

  • Find out what I really want to be doing, and do that.

More luck here. I quit my job, after it had turned from just an ok way to make money into a constant source of frustration. So, as of June 1st, I am a self-employed software developer, IT consultant and web designer, which gives me the freedom and tranquility to think thoroughly on where I want to go and how to get there. Where I want to go would probably be somewhere where there is a nice PhD position in computational linguistics or computer science.

  • Post to my blog more regularly. I’m going to try mondays, but don’t hold your breath.

Well, you can all see how that’s going.

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I Got Married!

Posted by matijs 29/06/2006 at 23h22

On June 16 and 17, Naoko and I got married. On the 16th we had our civil wedding, while our church wedding was on the 17th.

This is a photo from the first day, made by Thomer Gil:

Jim Forest has some pictures of the second day on flickr.

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Finland wins

Posted by matijs 21/05/2006 at 23h19

Wow. It’s been almost 24 hours, and I’m still amazed: Finland has won the Eurovision song contest. For the first time in fifty years. With a hard rock band. Cool.

When I saw them in the semi-finals, I was, for the first time ever, actually tempted to take part in the televoting.

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Addicted to Caffeine

Posted by matijs 25/02/2006 at 15h35

Today, I was suffering from a very bad headache. I was curled up on the couch, cursing the loss of a saturday, when I could have been processing lots of overdue paperwork. Then suddenly, I replayed in my head the moment I last put coffee from the bag I buy it in into the storage container. I realized the bag had a blue print on it, meaning it was decaf coffee. Oh no! The two cups I had this morning to satisfy my addiction were in fact decaf! Clearly, the bad headache was a caffeine withdrawal symptom. I immediately made a third cup, this time with the full goodness of caffeine. Now I just have to wait for it to take effect.

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New Year

Posted by matijs 12/01/2006 at 21h42

My resolutions:

  • Answer all relevant e-mail within a reasonable time.

  • Find out what I really want to be doing, and do that.

And of course:

  • Post to my blog more regularly. I’m going to try mondays, but don’t hold your breath.

I realise these are resolutions of widely varying importance.

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Posted by matijs 27/04/2005 at 23h04

Language log talks about Blendie. I like Blendie a lot. The following conversation results:

N: Hiingnyiiiiiing.

M: What are you doing?

N: I'm trying to be a blender.

M: I still love you even if you're not a blender.

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