Nummern, Zahlen, Handel, Leute

Posted by – August 8, 2009

I’ve gone several years now without buying practically any books or records (maybe a total of 10 in three years). At one point I felt I was accumulating too much stuff, so I stopped getting more and started selling/trashing/donating it. But now I’m starting on a sci-fi reading kick, and the library isn’t really good enough. So I bought some stuff.

How the ecstasy of buying, gaining and owning once again floods my mind! How the dread pain of parting with money grips it! Sweet possessions, horrible mortality.

I just bought three books off Amazon marketplace, where the independent booksellers get to try to undercut Amazon’s prices in exchange for a cut of the profits. It must be a slim cut indeed:

1 Isaac Asimov, The Caves of Steel £0.01
1 Isaac Asimov, The Naked Sun £0.01
1 Isaac Asimov, The Robots of Dawn £0.01
3 Postage & Packing £3.94
Total £11.85

This isn’t exactly how I thought reading books would work in 2009, but I guess it’s better than the way it was before (or…?)

I did buy some stuff from a regular bookstop as well: Asimov’s The Complete Robot and Emergency by Neil Strauss, a book about the dangers of the modern world and how to escape them. The latter is pretty disappointing, but it does give me some additional paranoia-fuelling ideas.

One of the things Strauss does in it is get a second citizenship (St. Kitts) as part of a “life backup plan”. This re-reminds me of something a friend reminded me of recently: that I should be able to get a UK passport if I wanted to. According to said person, getting the passport in Helsinki would cost me at least 154 euros. That’s a bit much for a bit of paranoid fun. Also, when the zombies attack it’s hard to see how the UK will be safer than Finland. But still, it’s tempting. Of course, for meaningful security I’d ultimately have to establish a base / financial presence of some sort there, which would take some doing.

I still dream of Canada and South Korea, but in paranoia terms Canada is pretty similar to Finland and South Korea is about as bad in a bad situation as anywhere.

2 Comments on Nummern, Zahlen, Handel, Leute

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  1. G says:

    €154 is a bit much, and the fees are bound to keep going up in the future.

    One thing to note is that usually it’s not a good idea to enter one’s country of citizenship with another country’s passport (e.g. enter the UK with a Finnish passport if you’re a UK citizen). While this rarely leads to anything adverse, in theory it’s not allowed. The U.S. in particular has been funny about this, as witnessed by the Mayor of London at

    Just to be on the safe side, I will continue entering Finland on my Finnish passport as long as I’m a Finnish citizen, even if I acquire other passports.


  2. Jo says:

    Come to Switzerland. No Amazon only the real proper thing like Ex Libris or Orell Fuessli. No global commercialism. Free market as Adam, or Karl defined it.