Category Archives: Random weirdness

Random weirdness for the week of Jan. 23, 2018

filmfest

This week’s madness is a madcap movie marathon, beginning with what is currently the world’s northernmost film festival. The nine occupants of the Bjørnøya Meteorological Station gathered last weekend for the 5th annual BØFF (Bjørnøya Filmfestival), watching five movies during a two-day period.

Random weirdness for the week of Jan 16, 2018

boxgetty

OK, we definitely don’t want the competition given our status as Svalbard’s resident street beggars, but since we’re journalists first and foremost we feel obliged to point out the riches this utterly boring and obsolete photo is worth to folks outside Svalbard who don’t know any better. Yup, it’s a drab and dull photo of that giant Santa’s mailbox that no longer exist (except in pieces in a storage container where it once stood), but digital copies are selling for 4,000 each at Getty Images, a publications, magazines and other media/PR venues. Check out the related images beneath and it’s clear anyone with a smartphone can take premium-priced images if they’re accepted as a contributor. Yup, we’ve sent in our stuff, so if nothing else we’ve got a brief headstart on folks who actually know how to use a camera…

Random weirdness for the week of Jan. 9, 2018

foxlights

We run lots of nudity during our nearly ten years of existence, but we feel safe declaring this the foxiest photo ever published b a tabloid. And it was taken a virgin, no less. This shot of a polar fox under the Northern Lights near Longyearbyen was captured on film Jan. 5 by Lise Loktu, a cultural heritage advisor for The Governor of Svalbard, who said this is her first photo of a fox. As animal porn goes, it definitely delivers a glow…

Random weirdness for the week of Dec. 19, 2017

boxgone

With Christmas nearly here it surely must be a merry feeling to many there isn’t a huge ugly red box outside Po Lee Lin’s Santa-themed workshop any longer. OK, at least not that big red box. Instead, the pieces of what used to be her 9.4-meter-high Santa’s mailbox outside the workshop are now being stored in a large red container a short distance from where the box stood before being removed in late November.

Random weirdness for the week of Nov. 5, 2017

voxmovie

We’re launching an all “#fakenews” roundup this week with what we’ll call The Frightmare Before Christmas. Lot of charming drone footage of Barentsburg, interspaced with lots of animated maps and a narrating hypothesizing about Russia’s sinister Arctic ambitions, with bits of military propaganda footage mixed in at the end. All that’s needed is a shot of Longyearbyen at the end that fades to white while an explosion sounds and you’d have a North Korean snuff film.

Random weirdness for the week of Nov. 28, 2017

lastjedi

OK, here’s our totally not made-up Star Wars secret reveal: The Last Jedi Are Headbangers.

Random weirdness for the week of Sept. 26, 2017

navyship

Hmmm…this week we’ve got the military strutting its stuff in our non-militarized haven, the mayor worrying tourism will soon be as unpopular as mining (at a time when many local pols are rooting for boom times in both industries) and outrage in Hong Kong about the exorbitant prices of our local “super premium” Svalbarði bottled glacier water. So which to lead off with? Well, since a real newspaper would go with the item most likely to significantly affect the most people reading this (and in this case the plural reference may be overly optimistic), we’re obviously starting with the water weirdness…

Random weirdness for the week of Sept. 12, 2017

reindeerkids1

The sight of gunshot-riddled reindeer carcasses hanging from what’s normally a swing set at Kullungen Kindergarten is yet another reminder Svalbard is a right-wing conservative haven, no matter what stereotypes they have about Norway being an Arctic version of North Korea.

Random weirdness for the week of Aug. 29, 2017

bearflame

Maybe they’re just getting back at us for overheating the planet and melting all that sea ice they used to hunt on.

Random weirdness for the week of Aug. 1, 2017

firefighterrainbow

Maybe the photo above reveals why so few rainbows are seen in Longyearbyen. A rainbow stretching from the sea towards town earlier this month failed to make it across the road due to firefighters doing their duty at the scene. Pepa Beltran, a resident of Spain, suggests in a Facebook post the photo she took is about “fighting fires with rainbows,” but at least one commenter suggests it “looks more like they are fighting the rainbow…”