Mar 30, 2017

Coffee and Cake: The Book Cafe

Turun kirjakahvila, or the Book Café, located in the Brinkkala courtyard on the historical Suurtori market square, is something completely different: a volunteer-run vegan café that hosts author visits, book circles, and all kinds of cool events for the alternative crowd. As the name suggests, they also offer a lending library of interesting books on social justice issues, distribute small press zines and books, and there's also the opportunity to swap used books or buy them for a reasonable fee. You can also donate books to the café. 

Here's the chocolate mousse cake I had. Delicious. The tea was fair trade, and you could choose soy or oat milk with your coffee. I've tried the seitan sandwich on a previous visit, and it was also very tasty.  

If you enjoy interesting events and a relaxed college coffee bar atmosphere, give the Book Café a chance. And don't let the vegan part stop you; honestly, if I hadn't known that cake was vegan, I wouldn't have been able to tell the difference. 

Mar 27, 2017

Loot Crate: Primal

Here's March's Loot Crate. You can see the Logan fig there on the very top. That's my favourite item this month.

The T-shirt's a bit too aggressive for me. It's from Overwatch, I think. 

And hey, why open your microbrew with a normal, boring bottle opener when you can use this Predator one? 

This is fun, but I have no place to hang it. (It's not really wrinkly, that's just the protective film I didn't take off yet.)

This month's pin.

Mar 25, 2017

It's Here!

. . . I hope it doesn't suck. (Shouldn't have read the reviews before playing.)

Mar 23, 2017

A Surprising Side of Wäinö Aaltonen

Finland is celebrating its 100th year of independence this year, and the Wäinö Aaltonen Museum in Turku is joining in with an exhibition of Wäinö Aaltonen's work. When I think of Aaltonen, what comes to mind are his sculptures, like these gilded figures that once stood in the Finnish Parliament. Apparently they were deemed too ostentatious and replaced with bronze casts at some point, but the originals are returning to the parliament house this year as part of the celebration. But that's not all there is to Aaltonen, and this exhibition is a great opportunity to see some of his more experimental work. 

This one is titled Beholder from the Depth. Pretty Lovecraftian, no?

Atlantis II. I love that dreamy, fairy-tale blue. 

This piece was hard to photograph, but that dark bit is actually missing. The piece is titled Shadow on the Face.  It's super creepy in person, because if you approach from the left, it looks like a perfectly normal sculpture, and then you suddenly see that gash on her face. Unsettling. 

The exhibition is running until May 7th if you want to check it out. 

Mar 20, 2017

Raindrops on Roses and Whiskers on Kittens

Monday getting you down? Here are a few things that are making me smile.

Spring sunshine.

Beauty and the Beast 2017 poster.jpg
Original theatrical release poster, image from

Seeing the new live action version of Beauty and the Beast. (No, it's not as good as the original, but I liked the modern touches to casting and character development and the new songs weren't half bad. And it looks gorgeous. Mind you, I'm incapable of losing the nostalgia goggles here, because this is a childhood favourite.)

Glad threads for summer.

Spaaaace broccoli!

The way honeydew melon seeds look like slimy monster teeth when you scoop them out just right. (Yes, I'm in my thirties, not tweens. What?)

And, best of all, only a couple of days to Mass Effect Andromeda!

Mar 19, 2017

Two New Writing Courses from The University of Iowa!

A heads-up to any writers out there: the University of Iowa is offering two free MOOCs this summer. Read more on their website: 

Mar 13, 2017


Where did the weekend go? And how is it Monday again, faugh. 

I spent most of Saturday watching Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency on Netflix. Totally worth it. If you like Douglas Adams' wacky style and don't mind a few (okay, a lot of) gruesome scenes, this is the show for you. Any writers out there might want to check it out as a masterclass in plotting. I bet you won't see the ending coming, and when everything becomes clear, you can almost hear all the mismatched, jagged pieces clicking into place.  

I didn't slack off all weekend, though. I finished my piece for the Stepanin koodeksi 4 anthology competition (and kind of freaked myself out in the process). Note to self: don't write horror alone and  late at night. Or maybe that's exactly what you should do? Any Finnish writers out there with a love of all things eldritch? Here's the link to the competition; the deadline's not until April 1st. I also rewrote the opening scene of that bothersome sci-fi story that's been giving me so much trouble, and I  have the new ending plotted out, too. Should be almost done, right? Well . . . After some consideration, I decided that the story would sound better in past tense instead of present, which isn't exactly a quick fix with 17k words of goofy action-adventure fun. Sigh. I'm also a bit stumped about where to submit this kind of thing; it's not exactly literary science fiction, and 17k is an awkward length. Maybe Writers of the Future? 

I also hung out with my family, checked out Aboa Vetus, which is a lot more fun with kids, and had an awesome popcorn-and-salted-caramel cupcake at the MBakery café. Not too shabby. 

Ooh, and did you see the teaser trailer for the final season of Game of Thrones? Looks pretty cool, though I'm a bit disappointed it won't be a full ten episodes.