Lessons From Couchsurfing: More Trust, Less Fear

Couchsurfing party on a much more hopeful election night in 2008.

I’m writing this in the wake of the United Kingdom’s referendum to leave the European Union. No one really knows the full implications of what this means for the future of Britain, the EU, or the global economy. The one…

Fewer Prayers, More Action

Source: vox.com

When it comes to terrorism, liberals are often accused of “seeing the world as you want it to be, not as it is.” It’s now time for liberals to accuse conservatives of the same when it comes to guns. So…

Overcoming Fear and Standing For Our Values

schengen

Author’s Note: I started writing this post on January 10, 2016 after being stopped at the border between Denmark and Sweden. I wrote it purely for some peace of mind, and then revisited it with some new thoughts in March. The day…

On Free Education

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There’s a reason I ended up in Eastern Finland, and it’s not for the weather or abundance of mid-winter sunlight. No, it’s to study. While the program–Master’s Degree in Environmental Policy and Law–was appealing, the price tag was even more…

Driving a Tesla

Tesla

Before I even managed to utter my first syllable of appreciation I was cut short, “You can’t say anything about his Tesla. He’s our competitor.” Christine and I were on our way into the her parents’ restaurant, Glashuset, and a shiny new…

It’s Time To Rethink American Elections

elections-ahead-sign-600x400

The U.S. 2016 presidential election might still be a year away, but it has basically been happening since the day after the 2012 race. For some, running for office has become a viable career choice, not merely a means to…

Dogs In Space!

A notable exception, Cosmo. Source: http://marvelcinematicuniverse.wikia.com/

Man and dog have been inseparable since long before recorded history. The domestication of the dog from its wolf common ancestor is a hallmark of human history, and as we have found each other so useful over the years, it…

Bluebird Cafe, Nashville

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Nashville, long renowned as a hotbed of musical talent, has gained another feather in its hat in recent years–a network prime-time drama by the same name. I’ve never watched the show. I never really wanted to watch the show. Christine, however,…

80 Couches: 200 and Counting…

To the next adventure: Finland!

This is my 200th published post on 80couches.com! When I started this blog five years ago prior to my move to Korea, I had no idea where my random brain-droppings would take me, or where I would take myself. Since…

The Norden

Nordic Flags. Source: Wikipedia

Recently, through my various wanderings about YouTube, I came across a most excellent Finnish TV program, The Norden. The show explores various aspects of Nordic societies (prisons, police, religion, gender, work, and family values) through the eyes of a foreigner. The episode…