long time gone, constantinople
I hadn't realized that Kaliningrad, the major city in that little Russian oblast sandwiched between Lithuania and Poland, used to be Königsberg, Kant's home and Euler's model for the beginning of graph theory and topology. (I think everyone had to do that "Bridges of Königsberg" problem in ninth-grade geometry.) What the article doesn't mention is that Kaliningrad is all fucked up these daysisolated and economically depressed and so on. I think Russia's a little worried about its ability to keep hold of the oblast in the long term. They're trying to put a good face on it, though:
We can already say now that the industry of the oblast revives. Proximity to European markets, a lot of imported commodities in the shops of Kaliningrad place local producers in the situation of the strongest competition. Close joining EU by the adjacent countries makes orientation on the European standards in production of goods the main line of oblast development. And the residents of the oblast prove that they can produce goods of the top quality.
The geographical term for such a piece of territory separated from the principal nation is "exclave."
Caterina contemplates Burning Man; I was intrigued a few years ago, when it had just started and I was living in Reno and the local papers couldn't get enough of it, but my interest has since paled. All the photos seem to show people who are not enjoying their drug experiences because they are in miserably hot tents. Our drummer is going nevertheless; the other night he was trying to explain the shape of his tent and used the non-word "rectahedron" and Rectal Tent became the joke of the eveningthis sort of thing happens with bands. Later we determined that said tent will actually be a right octagonal prism.