Stranger In An Even Stranger Land - blog by Gurdur


A blog of random jottings on events, science, renfairs, travel, reading, music, humanism, religion, atheism, and even the odd spot of gardening.


The Garissa terrorism attack by Al-Shabaab in Kenya, and its context

Posted 08-Apr-2015 at 03:23 PM (15:23) by Gurdur (Stranger In An Even Stranger Land)

Six days ago, Al Shabaab gunmen entered Garissa University and murdered at least 148 people. The initial death toll was reported as 147, thus the hashtag #147NotJustANumber, which was created by Kenyans to honor the murder victims. The terrorists had taken over 700 as hostages, then let most of the Muslim students go, and ended up murdering 149, mostly Christian students aged between 19 and 23. At least one Muslim was also murdered by the Al Shabaab terrorists.

Al Shabaab is an Islamist,...
Posted in Uncategorized
Views 10226 Comments 3 Gurdur is offline
Rating: 7 votes, 5.00 average.

When I invited a Duchess down Edgware Road for some qat (khat)

Posted 22-Sep-2011 at 10:01 AM (10:01) by Gurdur (Stranger In An Even Stranger Land)
Updated 22-Sep-2011 at 11:14 AM (11:14) by Gurdur

Not all that many people will invite a real true Duchess out for khat (qat) on meeting her for the first time, so all this demands quite a bit of explanation. When I arrived in London on Wednesday 31th August this year, preparing to go to the Science Online London event (#SoLo11) in the next days, and I found the hotel where I was staying, suddenly it was like all my Christmases had arrived at once. The hotel proved to be just across the road from the British Library convention rooms where #SoLo11...
Posted in Uncategorized
Views 5699 Comments 4 Gurdur is offline

Thoughts on ethics and so on about the first recent tourist to Mogadishu, Mike Bown

Posted 24-Mar-2011 at 05:02 AM (05:02) by Gurdur (Stranger In An Even Stranger Land)
Updated 24-Mar-2011 at 05:32 AM (05:32) by Gurdur

So the other day I blogged in whimsy on a bloke, Mike Spencer Bown, who claimed to have been the first recent tourist to have visited Mogadishu (as a tourist), Somalia. And that particular case of course brings up one hell of a lot of ethical questions surrounding it all; and I am going to lay out why it's all a very mixed bag with no one single simple answer or judgment.

First off, there's one (relatively at least) rich boy swanning off to a desperate region only so he can say he's...
Posted in Uncategorized
Views 4441 Comments 2 Gurdur is offline

Someone even more foolhardy than I am; Mike Spencer Bown claiming to be first recent tourist to Mogadishu, Somalia

Posted 20-Mar-2011 at 07:05 PM (19:05) by Gurdur (Stranger In An Even Stranger Land)

I've just come across a case of someone being blithely irresponsible and foolhardy to such a degree that he even surpasses me in that (look, there's a lot of true stories I never tell). This guy - Mike Spencer Bown - alleges he has visited Somalia as a tourist; it sounds in a way exactly the kind of thing I would do, except for the bit where he talks about:

"They tried four times to put me back on the plane to get rid of me but I shouted and played tricks until the plane left without
Posted in Uncategorized
Views 3303 Comments 0 Gurdur is offline

All times are GMT +2. The time now is 04:15 PM (16:15).


Credits and thanks:
Basic Style design: Design By: Miner
(much altered by Gurdur)

For smilies:

Koloboks, including Aiwan, ViShenk, Just Cuz, Laie, Connie, snoozer, Viannen,
and especially Mother Goose too.
KitKatty. and PederDingo, and phantompanther.

For help, coding, and/or modifications:

Different people at, and a whole lot of people -- too many to be individually named, sorry -- at

For artwork, avatars, backgrounds and so on:

KitKatty, and verte, and britpoplass

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.2
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright is asserted for the Heathen Hub itself and for its owner by its owner, from 2008 onwards. Copyright of individual posts remains the property of the original poster, however by posting on the Hub the poster grants the Hub the rights to host and present the posted messages for perpetuity. The Hub is in no way responsible for opinions or messages posted in any way on the Hub by its members. Please also see this here. Copyright of individual icons and other graphics, as for individual vBulletin styles, remains the property of the original owner/creator. Copyright for the vBulletin software itself, and the vBulletin Blogs software, remains with Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd, as in the copyright notice above.
Welcome to a place to talk about atheism, religion, science, humanism, evolution, politics, Creationism, literature, reason, rational inquiry, logic, cooking, reading, and travel - the Hub: a community for everyone.