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Born in Stockholm (Sweden), now live in Sapporo (Japan). Hold a Ph.D. in computer science and work with computers during the days, perform magic in a bar during the nights (and weekends, for kids). Also used to teach historical fencing back in Sweden.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

University staff New Year party: long speeches, lots of food, and a magicians' battle

Giving a surprisingly short speech, in front of large amounts of snow.

Yesterday was the yearly Hokkaido University Information Science Department Staff New Year party. In Japan we have both "忘年会" (end of the year party) and "新年会" (start of the new year party), and at our university they end of the year party is with your lab (students and staff) and the start of the year party is with the department staff.

Every year there is lots of food, and free beer. There are also very long speeches, one before you are allowed to eat, and one before you are allowed to go home. This year, the first speech was much shorter than normal. Presumably because the guy giving the speech is getting fired by the end of March, so instead of detailing "everything we need to do the coming year", he only detailed "everything we need to do the next three months".

There is a professor working at the Information Science department that also does magic. He started learning magic about two and a half years ago, I think. He found out that I am a magician, and every year he finds me and asks me to show him something. He also shows me things he has learned recently. This year he also performed for a bunch of other people, and he had me show some things to one of the secretaries that happened to pass by. She later came with another secretary and told me to do the "perfect match" (predicting the perfect type of man for the woman you do the magic for) again.

I also hammered a nail into my nose, did some ESP style card magic, and made some of the other guy's rubber bands disappear. It was quite fun.

Here are reports from the magic battles and food orgies of 2013 and 2012.

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