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Oct 31 2011

Episode CCLXVIII: Spooky story time

Since it’s Halloween, we should be telling spooky stories. Here’s one.


I guess that was more like creepy disturbing than spooky.

Episode CCLXVII: Clarity!.

714 comments

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  1. 501
    Ing

    The Recent Comments is still fucked up beyond belief.

  2. 502
    Dhorvath, OM

    I gave up and went back to keeping tabs open for each thread I am following.

  3. 503
    The Sailor

    Not quite caught up, but I’m skipping ahead a bit because I just got notified that my lab’s peer reviewed paper just got accepted with only very minor requests for revisions.

    The reviews were all complimentary, just 1 request to expound on a technical detail and one request to change the format of the images. I’m 3rd author;-)

  4. 504
    pelamun

    Do you mean the tab on the side bar or the RSS feed? The feed’s not been working well for me either?

  5. 505
    cicely

    What if instead they are robbed or beaten or, I don’t know, forced to eat mushrooms at knifepoint?

    Or even taken out into a field of peas, and abandoned there.
    -

    Not quite caught up, but I’m skipping ahead a bit because I just got notified that my lab’s peer reviewed paper just got accepted with only very minor requests for revisions.

    *confetti*
    -

  6. 506
    Dhorvath, OM

    Hey, 3rd author, good job.

  7. 507
    Inaji

    Ing:

    The Recent Comments is still fucked up beyond belief.

    Yeah, I know. It’s rarely accurate and there seems to be zero interest in fixing it. I’ve been keeping separate tabs open, but that’s a pain in the arse.

  8. 508
    First Approximation

    Complex numbers are a different mathematical tool that lend themselves to certain aspects of conceptual exploration.

    This is a very good point. If you are just counting fingers or number of people, the natural numbers are good enough, i.e, {0,1,2,3,4….}. However, let’s take your example and say you wanted to use money and wanted to represent being in debt. Then you would need the integers*, i.e, {….-2,-1,0,1,2….} and the negative numbers represent how much you owe. You can construct the integers out of the natural numbers. Now let’s just say you wanted to start worrying about the ratios of integers. You were studying music or something. Then you need the rationals, e.g, 1/8, 1/3, 22/7, etc. You can construct the rationals from the integers.

    Let’s say you started doing Euclidean geometry and have to start worrying about irrational numbers like the square root of 2 or pi. Then you need the real numbers. Construction of the reals isn’t as simple as the previous two constructions, but they can be made from the rational numbers.

    So:

    Natural numbers -> Integers -> Rationals -> Reals -> Complex numbers

    People in the past objected to the concept zero and negative numbers. The Pythagoreans objected to the concept of irrational numbers. There are some who still object to the idea of the real number line. Therefore it’s no surprise you get people denying the idea of complex numbers.

    Mathematics is much more than just integers or the real number line, which is what people usually just take it for. Mathematicians have many, many more mathematical tools at their disposal and complex numbers are just one of them.

    Again, whether you need natural numbers, integers, etc. depends on what your doing. If you’re counting ducks, all you need are natural numbers**. If you’re doing Euclidean geometry, you need the reals. If you’re doing quantum mechanics or working with circuits, you’re gonna need complex numbers.

    * Work in units of pennies, so forget about the whole decimal thing.

    ** This being Pharyngula I anticipate jokes about maimed ducks.
    _ _ _

    Incidentally, you can construct the natural numbers themselves from set theory like so:

    Take 0 = ∅ = the empty set

    1= {∅} = {0} = the set that contains the empty set

    2= {∅, {∅}} = {0,1} = the set that contains both the empty set and the set that contains the empty set

    3= { ∅, {∅}, {∅, {∅}}} = {0,1,2} = [not gonna write that out]

    etc.
    _ _ _

    thanks. One thing I’m still trying to get is

    (a,b)= a(0,1) + b(0,1) as a + bi

    Why would we take (0,1) here?

    Because I fucked up. Sorry if that caused confusion. Dhorvath has it right at 502.

  9. 509
    Carlie

    The number counts on the replies lags, too.

  10. 510
    consciousness razor

    FYI: Here’s what a “piano roll” looks like, when referring to the software version. It may indeed become gooey or sticky if it gets above a certain temperature, but I’ve never tested this.

    The term comes from the rolls used in old player pianos, which used punched holes in a long scroll to notate when the keys would be activated, in the same way old computers used punch cards.

    Some people prefer it because they don’t read standard notation well; because you can see all the parts for different virtual instruments on the same graph (though having different instruments play the same part is more complicated) rather than on separate staves; and because sometimes it’s a bit easier to see how pitches, durations and rhythms relate to one another. There are also a lot of technical reasons why it’s better in some cases: writing with some non-standard tonal systems, or for non-pitched instruments like drum machines, or being able to change all sorts of parameters (like changing tone colors in the middle of a note or time-warping effects) , etc., are possible when it would be extremely difficult or impossible in standard Western notation.

  11. 511
    Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls

    Sailor, congratulations on the paper. Complimentary grog on the way via intertubes/USB.

  12. 512
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    Ouch
    My arm has informed me that it does not approve of two consecutive evenings of felting.
    And I was hoping to finish tonight.

  13. 513
    SallyStrange

    Ohhhh, a piano roll! I’ve actually seen and sung along with one of those antique crank pianos. So cool! I had no idea that someone had adapted it for musical programming, but it makes perfect sense.

    Neat. But, no. I already know one form of musical notation.

  14. 514
    Setár, Elvenkitty

    Walton #301:

    The papers are fond of going on and on and on about Prince Charles’ £18 million income from the Duchy of Cornwall, but usually neglect to mention that he spends much of it on public and charitable works,

    Occupy Wall Street is fond of going on and on and on about the massive tax cuts given to the rich and large corporations, but usually neglect to mention that they spend much of it on creating jobs…

    Jesus fuck, Walton. It doesn’t matter whether or not you back the claim up, it’s the same bullshit regardless. How the fuck can you not see that?

  15. 515
    Benjamin "Derp" Geiger

    Electronic piano roll. And I love this song.

  16. 516
    pelamun

    and it turns out that this entire imaginary numbers thing was a confused analogy of NOMA. Head, meet desk.

    Science is like someone who wants to construct imaginary numbers without leaving the realm of real numbers.

    Therefore, NOMA. (note how you can use the fact that you use real number pairs to construct complex numbers for this analogy).

  17. 517
    Dhorvath, OM

    pelamun,
    I so totally didn’t follow that .

  18. 518
    pelamun

    Non-Overlapping MAgisteria.

    Well I must confess it first did look like “imaginary numbers therefore God” to me, but it turns out it was a NOMA metaphor.

    And I don’t think you could blame anyone for not following, it’s preposterous.

    Though I could react to it more vehemently to it than others because in my days as an agnostics, I also was a proponent of NOMA (though I didn’t know the term)

  19. 519
    First Approximation

    and it turns out that this entire imaginary numbers thing was a confused analogy of NOMA. Head, meet desk.

    Science is like someone who wants to construct imaginary numbers without leaving the realm of real numbers.

    Therefore, NOMA. (note how you can use the fact that you use real number pairs to construct complex numbers for this analogy).

    *confused*

    Isn’t ‘non-overlapping magisteria’ a sufficiently good analogy for NOMA? Is this person just trying to say science and religion are orthogonal to one another?

  20. 520
    pelamun

    this person had studied math before and felt like bringing up an analogy from math might be illuminating. I can’t wait to hear his sermons once he becomes a pastor – NOT.

  21. 521
    Tethys

    Ing

    That’s 1 point. it’s not of how it could work, it’s that I’m insanely skeptical it would have any GOOD result, not just the possibility of a bad result. I see someone doing that and my mind jumps to motive and what they’re thinking and what kind of person does such a thing. I told her the best case scenario was that a doucehbag has her number. Did anyone really think someone who does that is doing anything but indiscriminately seeking tail?

    Sadly, many people think that this is romantic. It might indicate that he has boundary issues, but it’s also possible that both parties are merely behaving in accordance with “prince charming” cultural stereotypes. Ask your friend what she finds attractive enough about this stranger to give him her phone number.

    —–
    On a somewhat related note, I read this blog because I learn all sorts of interesting things here ranging from imaginary numbers to bizarre movies. Somebody mentioned Pink Flamingos (the movie) and I checked out a clip on you-tube. It was very weird, and I have little interest in seeing more of it. I did however discover a TV show called Wonderfalls that I found quite entertaining. One episode is named Pink Flamingos, and contains a scene that seems pertinent. (starts at 2:25)

    Wonderfalls

    Benjamin Geiger

    Now that was funny! (I liked the soap photo too)

    Caine

    Yay for Esme! The white ratty paws are so cute.

  22. 522
    Dhorvath, OM

    pelamun,
    Thanks, I wasn’t really asking you for clarification so much as expressing incredulity with the argument.

  23. 523
    First Approximation

    this person had studied math before and felt like bringing up an analogy from math might be illuminating.

    Usually an analogy is suppose to make ideas simpler for the intended audience. Theologians sure have a way of obfuscating things.

  24. 524
    pelamun

    Actually he could also be arguing the position of Georg Simmel that both religion and science are about the entire reality, but make use of a different “sensorium”. I mean he keeps arguing that there are many things science can’t prove, that you can’t explain religious experiences (people experiencing the presence of Jesus in their lives).

    I actually don’t care if it’s Simmelian or NOMA, they all irritate me.

  25. 525
    pelamun

    Dhorvath, sorry. Hard to read undertones on the internet sometimes.

  26. 526
    Dhorvath, OM

    I can be a bit dry in person too, so it might have had similar impact face to face.

  27. 527
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    Looking at the date-rape thread, i’m happy to go to bed now.

  28. 528
    The Sailor

    Nerd, Dhorvath, thank you. Only the 1st and last authors really count in my field.;-)
    ++++++++++++++++++
    Irrational and imaginary as applied to numbers are misnomered [/neologism].

    It’s like trying to convince someone that ‘theory’ does not mean what they think it means.
    ++++++++++++++++++
    PZ, I think you are wrong about Walton’s Manarchy [sic] posts.
    And lately he has only been responding to others’. I have a tealdeer bar, and I can choose for myself what to follow and what to ignore.

    What Walton posts no more hijacks a thread (hard to hijack the TET;-) than the many responses he gets.

    Pedantic, compulsive, erudite, … well yes. Trollish? Nope.
    ++++++++++++++++++
    Benjamin, that was funny! So how’s your love life?
    [instantrimshot.com]
    ++++++++++++++++++
    Dhorvath – “I can be a bit dry in person too, so it might have had similar impact face to face.”

    Well, that’s gonna leave a mark.

  29. 529
    Dhorvath, OM

    Too close then?

    (That’s just Sailor, he thinks he’s funny.)

  30. 530
    BattleAubergine

    I uhm. Hi!

    I’m BattleAubergine, and uhm. I’m the one with the daftly long comment on the date-rape post. Any current topics, or…?

  31. 531
    Janine Is Still An Asshole, OM,

    BattleAubergine, that was not a long comment. It was what you needed to get your story across.

    You do not need to ask what the topic is. Just go off on what you want. There is normally a number of different topics going on at the same time.

  32. 532
    Tethys

    BattleAubergine

    Hello, and welcome to TET. There are usually several different topics, but feel free to go off on tangents.

    I read your post, and wish to convey my support in hoping your rapist is arrested. (unfortunately its unconstitutional to tattoo rapist across their foreheads)

  33. 533
    Inaji

    I uhm. Hi!

    Hi BattleAubergine, welcome to TET! There’s no set topic, talk about whatever you like.

    Your comment was not overlong at all. It’s difficult to tell the story of your rape in a short paragraph. I can’t tell mine that briefly.

  34. 534
    SallyStrange

    Welcome, BattleAubergine. I read your comment too and I am glad you shared it. It’s not too long. I’m happy for you that you did report your rape, at the very least you can say that much. I never reported my sexual assault because… well, the reasons shifted, but it was a combination of blaming myself and minimizing the seriousness of it and not correctly identifying it as sexual assault. So thanks for sharing. Stick around! This is a pretty supportive place.

  35. 535
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    BattleAubergine:

    Welcome. Be safe.

  36. 536
    Janine Is Still An Asshole, OM,

    Fun and games from a weekly letter to the FRC prayer team.

    I will quote a couple of sections in case you do not want to visit the site. I cannot blame anyone who does not want to.

    Planned Parenthood is secretly killing black babies.

    Herman Cain on Planned Parenthood — We are one year away from the 2012 Presidential Election, Experts say we can expect nastier politicking in the next 12 months than we have seen in our lifetimes. Recent accusations aside, Herman Cain stirred up an army of spiritual hornets by saying on national TV: “I still stand by that” (referring to statements he made about Planned Parenthood: that it has a “secret agenda to kill black babies” and is “working to commit genocide against the black community.”

    He said 75 percent of Planned Parenthood facilities were initially built in the black community; that Margaret Sanger (Planned Parenthood’s founder) was tied to the eugenics movement; that she worked on a project known as the “Negro Project” started in 1939 to provide ‘birth control’ services to black communities in the South.

    Planned Parenthood, of course, denies any such thing, but the facts are there for all to see. The “pro-choice” national media has yet to air the history of Planned Parenthood’s targeting of blacks. Now the Obama administration and Planned Parenthood are legally warring against the states that have decided to discontinue taxpayer funding, whether from state or federal coffers, to support the nation’s largest abortion provider (see Cain, Sanger Denial; Maafa 21; Negro Project Pt.1, Pt.2, Pt.3, Genocide Study; 2011 Study).

    May God expose Planned Parenthood and keep defunding in the debate! May a pro-life President end the present pro-abortion policy so America can begin to heal (Gen 9:6; Ps 106:37-40; Pr 1:11-16; 24:11-12; Jn 10:10; Rom 13:1-4).

    Children are better off in the system then with people who might care for them.

    Homosexual Adoption — Building upon Congress’ passage of a pro-homosexual federal hate crimes law, the overturn of the law against homosexuality in the military, and the legalization of homosexual marriage in her home state, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) has introduced the Every Child Deserves A Family Act. The Act would end all federal funding for adoption agencies that refuse to place children in LGBT “families.” It will punish public and private agencies that act on their view that traditionally married couples are the best candidates to adopt. It will trounce on adoption agencies in the 31 states that have passed marriage amendments. It will put some Christian groups that take federal funds out of business altogether. Moreover, it will subject foster and adoptive children to the homosexual indoctrination and behavior of LGBT “parents” (see Bill, Peter Sprigg on LGBT Adoption, 10 Myths)

    May God intervene and stir Americans to resist and stop this effort to advance the radical homosexual agenda and literally to possess our nation’s children. May God open our eyes! (Gen 1:26-28; 2:21-24; Lev 18:22-30; Dt 26:7-8; Pr 28:4; Lk 17:1-2; Acts 5:29; Eph 5:31-6:4

    Look at that, religious organizations should get federal money even when they violate federal laws.

  37. 537
    Inaji

    Janine:

    Planned Parenthood is secretly killing black babies.

    FFS, that chestnut is so damn hoary I’m amazed people are still using it.

  38. 538
    Janine Is Still An Asshole, OM,

    Pointing at Samantha Sanger’s racism in order to smear PP is the same tactic as pointing at Charles Darwin’s racism in order to smear modern science. It may be hoary but among a certain unquiet segment of the american population, it is manna from heaven. It is used because it works.

    Just look at direct marketing during the last forty plus years.

  39. 539
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    FFS, that chestnut is so damn hoary I’m amazed people are still using it.

    Why not? Leviticus (well, certain parts of Leviticus) still have ‘em rolling hating in the aisles. The oldies still work.

  40. 540
    Inaji

    Janine:

    It is used because it works.

    Ogvorbis:

    The oldies still work.

    I know. I suppose it was wishful thinking that people would get a fucking clue.

  41. 541
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    I know. I suppose it was wishful thinking that people would get a fucking clue.

    One of the problems is that their ‘instruction manual, second edition’ worships ignorance. And the ‘teachers’ foster it.

  42. 542
    Ella

    In what comes as a surprise to absolutely noone, Rupert Murdoch is at it again. Although he already owns 70% of Australia’s newspapers he’s trying to acquire Australia’s public international TV news network. AVAAZ is doing an email campaign. You can attach your name to the form letter here -> http://www.avaaz.org/en/murdochs_secret_abc_attack

  43. 543
    Rossignol

    I know I’m coming a bit late to the garden golem party, but…

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/nadiapriestley/177161311/

  44. 544
    Kevin, 友好火猫 (Friendly Fire Cat)

    This is why I love my Senator, and also why I am so goddamned depressed with this country.

  45. 545
    A. R

    I’m just waiting for the Republicans to stop showing up. It would be better than what they’re doing now, and about as useful.

  46. 546
    Cipher

    BattleAubergine, I see that you’re already here!
    …So I really need to start paying attention to things…
    HAI! Welcome! Pull up a chair.

    My current topic of interest is Oakland’s general strike. Twitter’s all atwitter about it; the Port of Oakland has been shut down, and several businesses also closed in solidarity. I’m still trying to figure out how to articulate my exact frustration with people who try to insult the Occupiers by calling them unemployed and talking about how they’re better because they have a job. There is so much wrong embedded in that one thing that I just can’t… even…
    Then you have the Chicago Board of Trade making me so hyperventilating-angry that I can’t focus on anything else.
    And I feel upset because I can’t get to the Occupation near me, I probably couldn’t stay very long if I did get there, and I don’t have money to contribute materially. So I’m sitting here trying to decide whom to write letters to. Iuno.

  47. 547
    pelamun

    What I love about the Guardian, part 128:

    Citing News of the World’s legal counsel: “[another editor] was moving towards telling [phone-hacking victim] to fuck off

    My most favourite newspaper in the world would have written something like “said something to the effect of telling him to go away”

  48. 548
    Esteleth, [an error occurred while processing this directive]

    Bleh.
    It’s been an interesting day. Staff meeting (long).

    The committee has my thesis. Defense is T-30 days. Have submitted a dozen applications for post-docs.

    Went to D&D, killed the immediate underling of the Big Boss. Big Boss fight is next week.

    Got a concerned e-mail from my mother. Seems that she saw a picture of me taken at the department Halloween party on FB. Is “worried” that I’m wearing a Pride shirt in it. Thinks this will make people think the “wrong thing” of me. Ugh. Concern trolling, at it’s parental best. Also thinks I’m being silly for complaining that the Sibling was asked if they were bringing their (opposite-sex) SO to Thanksgiving, cause if so that’s cool and another place at the table will be set. A few years ago I was told flat-out that I could not bring my (same-sex) then-SO. After all – she and I broke up! That means it doesn’t matter now.

    Dammit.

  49. 549
    Aratina Cage

    Pointing at Samantha Sanger’s racism in order to smear PP is the same tactic as pointing at Charles Darwin’s racism in order to smear modern science.

    Funny you should mention that, Janine. The first question from the audience given to Dr. Coyne at the end of his debate with Haught used that exact tactic of bringing up Darwin’s racism.

  50. 550
    Kamaka

    Hiya Caine

    No derail here!

    That box of books should keep you reading through our cold, hard ND winter.

    That “Inflationary Universe” thingy is a real mind-bender…I read it, but I don’t know how much of it I understood.

    “Destructive Emotions” is a very interesting read It’s a far better attempt at reconciling religion and science than the usual accommodationist crapperoo.

    Anyhoo, have fun with the library addition!

  51. 551
    Philip Legge

    Over on Almost Diamonds, Stephanie’s concocted the latest “Elevatorgate” challenge, asking what morally obligates someone to refrain from outing a morally reprehensible pseudonymous poster. Neat.

    (And back at comment #103, Ragutis is correct in imputing the main story in the third Hitchhiker novel relating to Krikkit was grafted in from a rejected Doctor Who story-line; this is separate of another Doctor Who story, Shada, which progressed to a fully written-out script, was partially filmed and then abandoned, and which when later melded together with parts of another Doctor Who story City of Death that had been successfully filmed, provided significant elements of the novel Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency. Ariaflame at #161 has incorrectly conflated these multiple divergent outcomes of Douglas Adams reusing his storylines.)

  52. 552
    Weed(less) Monkey

    Dhorvath, Isis is almost what I like in metal music but just not quite there. A bit too clean, perhaps. :)

    Straight to the gutter: Weedeater – It Is What It Is

  53. 553
    cicely

    Welcome in, BattleAugergine!

    I haven’t gotten far enough down the current ‘Predators’ thread yet to have read your post, but we’ve had some truly remarkable tealdeer here on TET, so don’t be worried about it.
    -

  54. 554
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    Okay, damnit! I have to ask. What in the name of purple pluperfect hell is a ‘tealdear’? And why is it on TET?

  55. 555
    Kamaka

    Tealdeer

    I had to google that one. Damn, language evolves fast in the intertoobs age.

  56. 556
    Janine Is Still An Asshole, OM,

    T(oo)eal(ong) d(id not)ear(ead)

  57. 557
    Kamaka

    Father Og

    You owe me a Coke. Or I owe you a Coke…or something.

    http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=teal+deer

  58. 558
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    T(oo)eal(ong) d(id not)ear(ead)

    Ah. Makes sence.

  59. 559
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    Though my spelliing does not. All hail Tpyos!

  60. 560
    Inaji

    Kamaka:

    That box of books should keep you reading through our cold, hard ND winter.

    That “Inflationary Universe” thingy is a real mind-bender…I read it, but I don’t know how much of it I understood.

    “Destructive Emotions” is a very interesting read It’s a far better attempt at reconciling religion and science than the usual accommodationist crapperoo.

    Anyhoo, have fun with the library addition!

    It will! Thank you again. I’ll put those two on top of the to be read list.

  61. 561
    Esteleth, [an error occurred while processing this directive]

    Ogvorbis,
    Teal deer is a backwards expansion of tl;dr. Too long; didn’t read. There are other alternate spellings, such as teal dear, etc.

  62. 562
    Kamaka

    @ Caine

    You got me started on “Collapse” by Jared Diamond.

    I’m just finishing it. Damn good read.

  63. 563
    Inaji

    Kamaka:

    I’m just finishing it. Damn good read.

    Oh, good! I’m glad you liked it. I found it very interesting, if often disturbing reading.

  64. 564
    cicely

    And now that I’ve read it, I can only say…I’m sorry it happened, and I wish you the best in your recovery. And that I hope he is tracked down and successfully prosecuted.

    If I may ask—and if I may not, just ignore me—why “aubergine”? I didn’t think eggplants were particularly combative vegetables. Peas, now…peas’ll mug you in a dark alley just for the hell of it, because they’re evil, and it’s Wednesday, and they’re bored, but eggplants?
    -

  65. 565
    The Laughing Coyote (Canis Sativa)

    If you say T L D R out loud, it actually kinda sounds like you’re saying ‘teal deer’.

  66. 566
    Inaji

    Cicely:

    If I may ask—and if I may not, just ignore me—why “aubergine”? I didn’t think eggplants were particularly combative vegetables.

    Aubergine is also a colour.

  67. 567
    Weed(less) Monkey

    If I may ask—and if I may not, just ignore me—why “aubergine”? I didn’t think eggplants were particularly combative vegetables. Peas, now…peas’ll mug you in a dark alley just for the hell of it, because they’re evil, and it’s Wednesday, and they’re bored, but eggplants?

    I’d guess it’s because aubergines are nowhere near as tasty as peas, and their shape is perfect for bludgeoning.

  68. 568
    Rossignol

    This may be something of a long shot, but does anyone hereabouts know anything about the care and feeding of chickens?
    My BF is adamant about filling the back yard with them and I want to know what he’s getting us into.

  69. 569
    Kamaka

    @ Salem

    I want to know what he’s getting us into.

    Lots of noise, for starters.

  70. 570
    Kamaka

    @ Salem

    And if he doesn’t have a good plan for dealing with chicken shit, he’s clueless.

  71. 571
    Inaji

    Lots of noise, for starters.

    Lots of shit, too. Salem, Patricia would be the best one to talk with, but she hasn’t been around lately. I’d hit google pretty hard, looking up chicken keeping in your specific area. Depending on where you are, it may be against the law.

  72. 572
    Alethea Kuiper-Belt

    Hello all, I have been at a conference where I got excited about graph databases. And even so I see Philip has managed to out-nerd me. *shakes fist*

    @Sally, Lilypond is excellent but does take quite a lot of learning.

    @BattleAubergine: welcome, and do have some e-hugs if you would like them.

    @Salem: they are MESSY, although on the plus side it’s good fertiliser. And they can be very vicious – “pecking order” isn’t just a metaphor. I don’t know how big your back yard is, but I’d suggest starting with just 2 or 3. I’d love to keep a couple, but my yard is way too small. My friend in the country has about 80, so most of my info comes from her.

  73. 573
    Alethea Kuiper-Belt

    Oh, and also congratulations to Caine on the new girl. Even if she does look like supper to the ginger boy who was sitting next to me when I looked at the pics.

  74. 574
    Kamaka

    @ Caine

    Lots of shit, too.

    Seems we had shitty thoughts at the same time!

  75. 575
    Weed(less) Monkey

    So… anyone seen the prequel to The Thing yet? The Cameron one is one of my favourite movies ever, and I’m hoping they wouldn’t fuck it up.

  76. 576
    Weed(less) Monkey

    … didn’t

  77. 577
    Pteryxx

    @Predator Handshake: I was exposed to scabies via a friend some years back, and was immediately put on pre-emptive treatment with some sort of whole-body cream, no diagnosis or wait required. I also had a week off work so I didn’t expose anyone else in the facility. Oh, and that was via my regular doctor, not a dermatologist. Good luck with that.

  78. 578
    Tethys

    Does anyone hereabouts know anything about the care and feeding of chickens?
    My BF is adamant about filling the back yard with them and I want to know what he’s getting us into.

    I would first suggest a proper coop and fenced run. Chickens are easy to keep and care for, but they need to be protected from predators. Chickens are fairly prolific guano producers. I can see a large flock becoming a hygiene issue on a typical city lot.

    There are many different factors to consider including; available space, climate, main goal of raising chickens.

    I think this book is a good resource. It is often available in public libraries.

    Chickens In Your Backyard

  79. 579
    Ron Sullivan

    @ # 247, walton says:

    *ahem*

    Occupy Walton!

    (Blame my work history. I’ll recycle any old thing.)

  80. 580
    Tethys

    a good plan for dealing with chicken shit

    Chicken shit and bedding > compost > garden.

    I used to grow the best spinach and lettuce by top dressing a garden bed with coop scrapings and turning the bed in fall. Come spring it was a perfect planting bed as soon as the snow melted.

  81. 581
    Philip Legge

    *waves back at Alethea*

    I think it was pure chance that I posted on that subject before you: I’ve returned from a successful looting and pillaging tasting and acquiring of many fermented grape vintages grown in the famous valley north-east of Adelaide, and driving home on Melbourne cup day didn’t really allow time to concentrate on posting corrective Douglas Adams minutiæ. (And then yesterday, I was being just plain slack.)

    It is my firm opinion though, that Dirk Gently’s H.D.A. is the best-ever novelisation of a Doctor Who story to be made available in print – even if the basic story has been welded out of pieces from two different tv scripts and then transplanted into a completely different fictional universe; DNA was not one to let good ideas go to waste. And it even has a full recitation of S.T. Coleridge’s poem Kubla Khan in it! That simply can’t be beaten.

    Add my greetings of welcome to BattleAubergine also.

  82. 582
    Inaji

    Alethea, thank you. Esme might just qualify as an amuse bouche, but definitely not enough for dinner!

  83. 583
    Ze Madmax

    Hello everyone!

    *grabs mug, sniffs, chugs contents*

    My brain hurts. Grad school is hard. I like cake. Is that cake? CAKE!

    *runs off*

    P.S.: Sally Strange, a couple of months ago (July?), the subject of Pandora internet radio came up, and you mentioned making a station with Toubab Krewe, Diplo and Emperor Penguin as the seed artists.

    That station has kept me awake and (relatively) sane through many a dark night typing away for school. It is AWESOME. So, thanks for that :D

  84. 584
    Cipher

    “One night after supper, the lead dog turned up a snowshoe rabbit. The dog lay down low to the race, his body flashing forward, leap by leap. He was sounding the deeps of his nature and the parts of his nature that were deeper than he, going back into the wombs of time.”

    -Call of the Wild, via Buffy, being pretty

  85. 585
    The Laughing Coyote (Canis Sativa)

    So… anyone seen the prequel to The Thing yet? The Cameron one is one of my favourite movies ever, and I’m hoping they wouldn’t fuck it up.

    I believe the name you are thinking of is ‘Carpenter’.

    I haven’t seen it yet, but from all accounts they did kinda fuck it up. But I was expecting as much. I’m still gonna give it a shot, but I’m gonna have the Carpenter movie on standby to wash the taste out of my mouth afterwards.

    Tethys: Thanks for your advice about rocks with a waxy surface texture. I think I’ve been making some progress.

  86. 586
    Weed(less) Monkey

    I believe the name you are thinking of is ‘Carpenter’.

    Thanks.
    I dont know what I was thinking.

  87. 587
    chigau (違う)

    Hi.
    Welcome.
    Hugs.
    Grog.
    Pickles!
    ‘bye.

  88. 588
    SallyStrange

    the subject of Pandora internet radio came up, and you mentioned making a station with Toubab Krewe, Diplo and Emperor Penguin as the seed artists.

    That station has kept me awake and (relatively) sane through many a dark night typing away for school. It is AWESOME. So, thanks for that :D

    YESSSSS. So glad someone appreciated it.

  89. 589
    Alethea Kuiper-Belt

    Philip, no, you posted after me, but with a lot more detail on both aspects. I concede to you the Dr Who/DNA Trivia Crown.

  90. 590
    Philip Legge

    *looks* It seems I missed your #108! Whoops. I went looking over on the Pfft just now and am very saddened to discover that Jane Belson (Douglas’ wife, and mother of their daughter, Polly) passed away on 7 September: readers who purchased some of DNA’s novels through the late 1980s will have first heard of her indirectly by way of the author’s biographical page saying that “[h]e lives in Islington with a lady barrister and an Apple Macintosh”. She’d remarried an underwriter at Lloyd’s; I notice among those who added a remembrance to her obit in the Times were Lalla and Richard Dawkins of Oxford, Oxfordshire.

  91. 591
    dawnbyrnes

    *sticks head in*

    Is it safe for an autistic bisexual Norse pagan to come in?

  92. 592
    Cipher

    Hello Dawn! Welcome in! Greetings from an autistic bisexual atheist! Pull up chairs, have some swill, get to know everybody :)

  93. 593
    John Morales

    Hi all.

    Greetings from rainy, cloudy Alhaurin de la Torre. Off to the airport to go to rainy London in an hour.

    (Not much of a traveller, I)

    Greetings, dawnbyrnes.

    Not that safe, someone might respond to you. :)

  94. 594
    dawnbyrnes

    *sticks head in a little more*

    I promise I won’t go viking in your backyard and will offer you the head of the fundagelical of your choice. :)

  95. 595
    The Laughing Coyote (Canis Sativa)

    I just looked at the clock, and realized it’s been november 3rd for 46 minutes already. Today, I’m 27.

    I’m not sure what to think of that.

  96. 596
    Tethys

    Hi dawnbyrnes,

    Come on in, don’t be scared.

    I can deal with norse paganism just fine. I think many of the regulars are conversant with ancient pagan traditions.

    Just don’t offer to cast any runes unless you want to be teased mercilessly. ;)

    ____

    TLC

    I’m glad it was helpful. So many stones are suited to knapping but they vary wildly in color. Waxy is one of the few terms that applies to all of them.

  97. 597
    Tethys

    Happy birthday TLC!

    *confetti/cake/candles/herbage*

  98. 598
    dawnbyrnes

    Tethys, I don’t even cast runes. In fact, many of the organised Norse pagans would scream ‘No True Asatru!’ if they met me. :P

  99. 599
    The Laughing Coyote (Canis Sativa)

    Thanks Tethys. Now I just need to find a piece that’s relatively flaw-free.

    I found a huge gorgeous green one on one of my walks, but it was right in the midst of someone’s cleverly hidden river camp. I only became aware I wasn’t alone when I heard a cough that might have been deliberate, and I figured they wouldn’t appreciate having some stranger bash rocks in the midst of their area, so I made myself scarce.

    And thus the search continues. At least I know what to look for now.

  100. 600
    The Laughing Coyote (Canis Sativa)

    Dawnbyrnes: I’m considering putting runes on my short sword/dagger just for the hell of it, but I can’t figure out how to engrave metal yet.

  101. 601
    John Morales

    TLC, engraving is hard, acid etching not so much.

  102. 602
    pelamun

    If I could choose a Republican presidential candidate, it would be John Huntsman. He was on Colbert recently. Did you hear him speak Mandarin? Unfortunately it was quite garbled (“副美国总统 fu4 mei3guo2 zong3tong3″ vice-American-president was cringe-worthy). He was better than Kirsten Gillibrand, but can’t hold a candle to Kevin Rudd.

    Too bad that he had to overstate his Mandarin language abilities, that doesn’t really help his credibility. At least Obama is more modest about his Indonesian abilities.

    http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/explainer/2011/10/is_jon_huntsman_fluent_in_chinese_.html

    Still waiting for the analysis of the folks over at Language Log though…

  103. 603
    pelamun

    Jon Huntsman. But then, as TRMS noted, his own campaign misspelt his first name when he announced his candidacy (and had some other mishaps, it was quite an amusing segment on TRMS)

  104. 604
    opposablethumbs

    Happy orbit-round-the-sun day, TLC!

    Esteleth #552 – argh. I’m sorry your mother is being so stunningly insensitive.

    Great to see BattleAubergine and dawnbyrnes. Hope you enjoy it here – there are a lot of wonderful people among the many and various denizens!
    (apropos of nothing else, I love the nym BattleAubergine btw)

  105. 605
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    Good morning

    Happy Birthday TLC

    Esteleth
    Oh dear deer. I hope she will learn one day. I know my in laws one day figured out that they could either accept who their son is an win a new family member, or they could lose their son.

    Welcome all the newcomers

  106. 606
    First Approximation

    I doubt anyone is surprised by this, but…

    Biggest Public Firms Paid Little U.S. Tax, Study Says

    A comprehensive study released on Thursday found that 280 of the biggest publicly traded American companies faced federal income tax bills equal to 18.5 percent of their profits during the last three years — little more than half the official corporate rate of 35 percent and lower than their competitors in many industrialized countries.

    The report is being released as corporations are pushing for a cut in their official tax rate, saying the current system puts American companies at a disadvantage with competitors abroad and encourages them to shift jobs and investments overseas.

    The study said that the shelters and loopholes in the current tax system rewarded companies that aggressively avoided taxes at the expense of those that did not. A quarter of the companies in the study had a federal tax bill of 35 percent of their profits, while a similar number had an effective rate of less than 10 percent.

  107. 607
    First Approximation

    Arghhh, must not post before morning coffee, must not post before morning coffee,…

    Here’s the correct link:
    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/03/business/280-big-public-firms-paid-little-us-tax-study-finds.html

  108. 608
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    If you’re interested in adding your 2ct, Stepahnie Zwan is discussing whether or not Hoggle’s real name in order to warn women around him.

  109. 609
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    Ehm, insert “to release” in appropriate place

  110. 610
    pelamun

    I wonder if this is the health care system the teabaggers want for America as well, and more importantly, WHY? (including stuff not mentioned in the article like corrupt doctors, nurses and hospital admins, embezzling hospital funds, double-charging patients etc)

    http://oigs.indonesiamatters.com/221-babies-die-and-the-elite-plunder/

  111. 611
    First Approximation

    Remember John Haught? The cowardly theologian* that didn’t want to release the video of his debate with Jerry Coyne?

    Well, he relented. The video is available here.

    * Yeah, yeah redundant.

  112. 612
    First Approximation

    John Haught, Tone Troll Supreme:

    I’m still in shock at how your presentation ended up. I was so offended both personally and as an academic by the vulgarity of it all that I did not want other people to have to share what I witnessed that night in October. I still don’t.

    Yet another example of someone attempting to use their offense to silence critics (except this time it really didn’t work).

  113. 613
    First Approximation

    Of course I refresh the main page after I post 616. Today is not starting out well.

  114. 614
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    Speaking about tone-trolls:
    I got the first one on my little blog. I’m so happy.
    And it’s a good one. Xie doesn’t only think that I’m writing “anal” (yeah, I’m not making that up), xie also thinks that it’s because I’m German.

  115. 615
    myeck waters

    How much is 27 in coyote years? Happy birthday, TLC!

  116. 616
    The Sailor

    Happy B-day, TLC!

  117. 617
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    Happy birthcay, TLC.

    And happy Tuesday to everyone.

    I had a discussion yesterday evening with a local libertarian teaparty mayoral candidate for our small city. I was out on the porch, wearing my cowboy hat, smoking a cigar, and she walked up the sidewalk stuffing campaign brochures in doors. She handed me one and asked who I was planning to vote for?

    (This is not an exact, verbatim, transcript, but it is pretty damn close to reality — especially the rant before I asked her to leave)

    I ignored her question (I have read enough about her in the newspapers to have already formed a very negative opinion) and asked, “Who paid for the sidewalk you just walked up?”

    She paused for a moment and said, “You did, with your high taxes.”

    “No,” I replied. “I didn’t. That sidewalk was already here when I bought my house. It was paid for by previous taxpayers. Who paid for the road your big SUV is sitting on?”

    “You did, with your taxes.”

    “And so did everyone else in the country, since part of the repaving project was paid for through a federal grant.”

    As soon as I paused to take a breath, she jumped in. “But the sidewalks and roads are necessary. Of course we need to pay for those. But most of our taxes go for stuff that nobody wants and most of that gets wasted.”

    “Have you even read our city’s budget? Infrastructure and emergency response are more than half of our budget. Are those waste?

    “You have the damn gall to drive up here in your $60,000 SUV and tell the people on this street that if they stop paying taxes, if public education is defunded, if the streets are allowed to rot, if we go back to 1890 and let the poor die in the streets, they will be better off? You drive on public roads, you are protected by the public police, your company depends on workers who can read, write and do math thanks to public schools, you eat food that you can be reasonably sure is safe, you have clean water and waste disposal, and you have built a good life for yourself taking every advantage of all the hidden good that government does and now you want to make it as hard as possible for anyone in this middle-class neighborhood to follow your example? Get off my lawn.”

    And she did.

    And then I said, “The sidewalk is public. We all paid for that. Enjoy using it as you walk away.”

    The stunned look on her face was precious.

    And then I continued reading Going Postal as I smoked my Romeo y Julieta Reserva Real Minutos Petite cigar.

    Maybe she thought, with the cowboy hat and the cigar, that I was a kindred spirit.

    She was wrong.

  118. 618
    Ing

    I’ve complained about the local Uni’s student paper before, but the tone of it is becoming virulently right wing. So much so that there was a Editorial asking people to stop sending complaints about the bias of their columns

    To get a feel of it, they of course have a liberal and conservative column…for balance

    Conservative story: LIBERALS PROMOTE POVERTY!
    liberal: GOP CANDIDATES HAVE SOME FLAWS

  119. 619
    opposablethumbs

    Nice one, Father Ogvorbis.
    You are clearly one of those people who remember the things they want to say at the right time, rather than ten minutes after the person (or libertarian teapartier, in this case) has gone.

  120. 620
    cicely

    Is it safe for an autistic bisexual Norse pagan to come in?

    I can’t see any reason why not; welcome in!
    -
    Happy birthday, TLC. I promise not to sing to you; not quite as good as money in the bank, but you’d thank me if you’d ever heard me sing. Trust me!
    :)
    -

    Tethys, I don’t even cast runes. In fact, many of the organised Norse pagans would scream ‘No True Asatru!’ if they met me.

    I have an SCA friend with a Norse persona who’s into Asatru (however that might more properly be put; I blame the ferocious case of Morning Brain that has my number this morning), and he has extremely caustic things to say about casting runes. It particularly pissed him off when he was trying to teach a class on runes in their historical perspective, and someone(s) in the class would invariably try to make it all about the modern mystical…stuff.
    -
    Happy Tuesday, Father Ogvorbis; I’m working on Fourth Monday, myself, and so far it’s blowing chunks. Of phlegm. *hooorrrrrkk! spit!*

    Nice story, btw! Maybe she’ll even have caught a clue, who knows?
    -

  121. 621
    Muse (evidently temptress of Pharyngula women)

    Standing ovation for Ogvorbis. That’s an awesome rant.

  122. 622
    chigau (違う)

    Happy B-day TLC.
    Nice speach Fr. Og.

  123. 623
    Janine Is Still An Asshole, OM,

    Jerry Coyne has a new post about Bill O’Reilly and Deepak Chopra tag teaming against Richard Dawkins. Two bad tastes that tastes bad together.

  124. 624
    Birger Johansson

    Could this be…JESUS?!!!!! “Canadian doctors see face in testicle” http://medicalxpress.com/news/2011-11-canadian-doctors-testicle.html

    Regarding theobabble: ”kenosis” sounds like what potheads experience. Or is the emptying of the mind what victims of extra-terrestrial mind parasites go through? (see Heinlein novel)

  125. 625
    Carlie

    Dan Savage gets glitter-bombed for being transphobic

    Although I’m on record as disagreeing with glitter bombing as a tactic, I’m glad somebody’s publicly calling him out on his shit. Just because he’s sex-positive in a lot of ways doesn’t give him a pass on the ways he’s still a bigot.

  126. 626
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    opposablethumbs:

    I knew who she was before she opened her mouth and had seen her coming. So I had about 10 minutes to plan my response.

  127. 627
    chigau (違う)

    There’s a Pharyngula Store??‽!!

  128. 628
    Kevin, 友好火猫 (Friendly Fire Cat)

    @Carlie:

    Glitter bombing is a terrible tactic! It makes you sparkly for days! Give glitter to a child and they’ll have little bits and pieces on them even after long baths!

    But yes, he deserved to be called on his transphobia. A shame that the LGBT community isn’t always as cohesive as it should be.

  129. 629
    Rossignol

    Thanks to everyone who responded Re: chickens!
    It seems the SO has already checked the local statues, purchased a composter and drawn up plans for a coop, so I think I’m doomed.
    I will definitely check out that book, Tethys.
    I’m still a little worried about the noise. Or rather that the noise will cause the neighbors to wield pitchforks.

  130. 630
    Ing

    Could someone give a transphobe example for Savage? I’m not saying he isn’t, at all, I’m presuming that I missed it.

    I’ve been irked a bit by his occasional promotion of no-bisexuals and some stuff like that.

  131. 631
    Carlie

    Ing – the article at the link then links out to other articles that have examples; he commonly uses the term “shemale”, for a simple instance.

  132. 632
    Dhorvath, OM

    BattleAubergine,
    There is no topic too small, no topic too large, no comment too large. I see cicely already covered peas, other than that you should be relatively safe to say whatever crosses your mind here. It’s the lounge, have a drink and pull up a comment or two.
    ___

    Esteleth,
    What wrong thing could a pride shirt make people think of you? That sends all kinds of right message. Ah, I see, selfish short sighted parents seeking to influence, not understand their children. My sympathies. Would you prefer hugs or chocolate?
    ___

    Weed Monkey,
    I am not entirely surprised, ISIS is certainly clean. I don’t know too many bands that play that game at all, I do tend to the more technical rather than texture bands. Still, loving the links, I have a dearth of new input.
    ___

    dawnbyrnes,
    Welcome, don’t let the facade fool you, we are a bunch of softies here. New people are great.
    ___

    TLC,
    And a happy day to you.
    ___

    Ogvorbis,
    You did well. Get off my lawn even!
    ___

    Carlie,
    I have hope that Dan can figure this out. As a target for a prank heads up, I think he is a good one.

  133. 633
    Carlie

    Here’s one of the more egregious Savage columns, entitled “Bad Tranny” (no, seriously), in which he chastises a man for a sex-change operation as a “selfish tranny”, a “stupid tranny”, and refers to the person wanting the sex change as being “imperfect”.

  134. 634
    Ze Madmax

    Happy birthday TLC!

    And I join on the standing ovation to Father Ogvorbis.

  135. 635
    Benjamin "Derp" Geiger

    … oh, this is rich.

    I just got labeled a “smarmy prick with a pointless axe to grind” because I requested evidence for a claim. And this from another member of an atheist organization.

  136. 636
    Ingdigo Jump

    Ah yes. that was a very bad one. Sadly I have more hope I think for Savage than for say Dawkins….

  137. 637
    Ingdigo Jump

    @Ben

    That happens all the time. People call me elitist for requesting people back up shit with facts. Because then it turns a discussion into a shouting match. Noooooooooooooo not having facts turns it into the shouting match because then it’s a bunch of assholes seeing who can fart loudest.

  138. 638
    Benjamin "Derp" Geiger

    Ing: It actually gets worse. The labeling happened today… the request for evidence happened back in August.

    PS: It is not particularly easy to search for a status update in Facebook.

  139. 639
    myeck waters

    The “Predators among us” thread reminds me, yet again, of the amazing sheer perseverance of the horde in countering MRA bullshit. Y’all are like superheroes. I don’t know how you do it.

  140. 640
    Janine Is Still An Asshole, OM,

    The “Predators among us” thread reminds me, yet again, of the amazing sheer perseverance of the horde in countering MRA bullshit. Y’all are like superheroes. I don’t know how you do it.

    Because there are a lot of us. The burden does not fall just to one person or one small group of people. It would be even more wearying if it was only a few.

  141. 641
    Predator Handshake

    @pteryxx: thanks for the reply; I thought my post might have been buried in the middle of royalty-chat. I’ll probably have my PCP call the pharmacy for some of that cream just to be safe. Did you also have to sterilize your bedding and all that? The woman who may have exposed me is, but it seems like that’s not necessary unless you definitely have it.

  142. 642
    RichardAustin

    So caught up briefly.

    Happy Random-Theoretical-Completion-Of-An-Orbit-Around-Your-Primary-Celestial-Body, TLC!

    Welcome new folk!

    Yay chickens!

    Boo chicken noise!

    Today is Imaginary Productivity Day, on which I spend hours in meetings and, when I’m not in meetings, I get to be working on powerpoint slides.

  143. 643
    Janine Is Still An Asshole, OM,

    Chicken Boo

  144. 644
    PZ Myers

    There will be a Pharyngula store, imminently. I’m going through Skeptical Robot, the same outfit that handles Skepchick and SGU and George Hrab merchandise. See? I’m selling out in good company.

    We’re aiming to have some Happy Monkey cards out in time for the holidays, as well as t-shirts and buttons, that sort of thing.

  145. 645
    Weed(less) Monkey

    Dhorvath, how about Gojira? They have mastered a filthy sound while being extremely technical at the same time.

  146. 646
    Rossignol

    Re: Dan Savage, ugh, just read that “Bad Tranny” article. I hope he’s improved at least a little in the intervening years.

    @ Ing, is Dawkins also transphobic?

    @ Janine, oh no. Now I am worried about the noise, and the possibility that the chickens will disguise themselves as me and usurp my life.

  147. 647
    Weed(less) Monkey

    What a hilarious name for a song: Gojira – Satan is a lawyer

  148. 648
    RichardAustin

    Link borked, oh leader-type person.

    Skeptical Robot

    But if you don’t have a plush squid, Horde membership badges, or at the very least Pharyngula-brand yarn, you’re likely to have a revolution on your hands.

    Or, hey, how about a bumper sticker: “99% of all statistics are made up! #OccupyTET”

  149. 649
    pelamun

    Salem,

    probably Ing means that Savage might still see the error in his ways, while Dawkins – sadly, I must say – seems to be entrenched in his way. Not having followed Savage that much, I can’t say whether that’d be realistic or not, the only thing I can see from here is that he got his age going for him. Dawkins was socialised under quite different circumstances, but I’ll stop armchair psychologising now..

  150. 650
    Rev. BigDumbChimp

    There will be a Pharyngula store, imminently. I’m going through Skeptical Robot, the same outfit that handles Skepchick and SGU and George Hrab merchandise. See? I’m selling out in good company.

    We’re aiming to have some Happy Monkey cards out in time for the holidays, as well as t-shirts and buttons, that sort of thing.

    Squid shaped grill brand / bacon press. Not that I’ve ever used either but I’ve received a pig shaped variety of both.

    Squid embroidered hats

    Squid decals / car emblems

    Squidy fake beards

    Squid beer glasses / mugs

    I can go on

  151. 651
    RichardAustin

    Random link from a progressive friend on FB:
    Note to Innovators: Sex Matters

    We all need to demonstrate more interest in sex and gender. Intellectually.

    And if we do it well, says history of science professor Londa Schiebinger, we’ll save lives and influence the way researchers approach almost every field of study.

    [...]

    In simplest terms, Schiebinger’s message is that public policy and scientific research often fail to account for key differences between men and women, leading to alarming flaws in products and services. Two striking examples: seatbelt testing and design that ignores the effect of the restraints on pregnant women; and, in health care, inattention to the way osteoporosis afflicts males as well as females.

  152. 652
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    BTW, inspired by yesterdays discussion of fictional writing I translated another one of my short stories.
    If you’re interested, it’s on the blog, if not, ignore (not trying to clickfish, meant as a factual statement)

  153. 653
    pelamun

    Question to Buffyologists here: “Cuts you up” by Peter Murphy seems to have a motif similar to the title music of Angel. Or is that coincidence? The motif I mean appears right at the beginning of the song, and is repeated in-between, reminding me of how the title music of Angel begins..

  154. 654
    chigau (違う)

    PZ #648
    Pharyngula Store link is borked.
    I would like dead porcupine temporary tatoos.

  155. 655
    The Ys

    I’ve been perusing the news and this stupid headline jumped up and grabbed my attention:

    http://ca.eonline.com/news/justin_biebers_alleged_baby_mama_now/273194

    She gets death threats for filing a paternity suit? Bieber must be so proud of his ‘fans’.

  156. 656
    pelamun

    Headline “Fracking probably caused earthquakes, report find”

    Yes, I’m a Whedonist.. so you probably know what I first thought this was supposed to say…

  157. 657
    theophontes, Pedante Royale

    [architecture]

    Not China…

    Oy Vey! … well then it will have to be India and South Africa…
    (Sadly, a lot of my old pics have disappeared over the years, but I shall make a plan.)

    Christopher Alexander

    *applause*

  158. 658
    Janine Is Still An Asshole, OM,

    The Michigan Senate just passed an anti-bullying law. But there is an out. As long as the bullying has a moral or religious element to it, it is allowable.

    The law includes a section noting it doesn’t abridge First Amendment free speech rights or prohibit expression of religious or moral viewpoints — a provision Democrats fear could be used to justify harassment of gay, lesbian or transgender students.

    One has to be able to tell a fag, a dyke, a sissy or a butch that they will be going to hell. And that their presence threatens their peace of mind.

  159. 659
    pelamun

    theophontes,

    I was just saying for “good pieces from developing countries”, because China no longer is under the same economic constraints your average developing country, and the architectural landscape probably reflects that.

    However, I’m still more than interested in your expert opinion on good pieces in China of course! I’ve only been to Beijing, and the last time that was before I was interested in architecture, the next time I hope to widen my scope a little bit more, to include Shanghai (I’m quite interested in what the Bund will feel like, as a mixture of colonial legacy and modernity), and maybe other regions, but that’s always a question of time…

  160. 660
  161. 661
    Kevin, 友好火猫 (Friendly Fire Cat)

    @pelamun:

    Puts a new spin on “when this van’s-a-rockin’, don’t come-a-knockin’”

  162. 662
    theophontes, Pedante Royale

    always a question of time…

    This is always the problem. I will just have to post to TET as I find stuff.

    You should also consider a visit to Shenzhen if you want to see a city that has grown from nothing in about the last 30 years. The Pearl Delta is an amazing place in terms of urban development. (This could also involve drinking beer though, be forewarned.)

  163. 663
    Aratina Cage

    I really can’t believe the antics going on at ERV. They are rehashing Kershenbaum’s FAIL post where the Intersocktion fell for Wally Smith’s fabricated smears that were lifted free of all context and presented as accurate quotes written by members of Pharyngula, yet almost every single one was able to be debunked and quite a few had never been written at all (the garden rake one spoke of by Wally Smith’s “Petra” comes to mind). So now ERV is falling for Wally Smith’s dirty socks? Currently linked to as support for ERV’s Pharyngula exposé are posts by Caine and Janine. I can’t for the life of me figure out what point she is trying to make by pointing to those comments and making glib statements like “Don’t have food/liquid in your mouth if you follow this link” or “Theyre like fucking goldfish”. I’m completely boggled by this.

  164. 664
    Esteleth, [an error occurred while processing this directive]

    More fail from the parentals!
    Now, I’m being mean for calling out the homophobia. I need to be “sensitive” to the fact that both my parents are recovering fundamentalist Christians and that they’re “trying, but just aren’t there yet.”
    Oh, and I’m totally disrespecting my (straight) sibling and her SO by insisting that my (TOTALLY ENDED, SO IT’S OKAY TO INSULT IT) same-sex relationship is equivalent to theirs and deserves the same respect.
    (Even though the sibling in question says – I quote – “That’s homophobic bullshit.”)

    Dammit.

    Also: why don’t I call more often? They want to hear from me! Also, why is it that we frequently argue! Can’t we get along?!

    ::headdesk::

  165. 665
    Janine Is Still An Asshole, OM,

    If anyone can read those words that I wrote condemning the words and actions of Wally Smith as actually being a expose of Pharyngula, it shows that being truthful is the farthest thing from their agenda.

    And yet I cannot seen to care enough to find out how else my words are being twisted.

    Let them stew in their own hoggle juice.

  166. 666
    Janine Is Still An Asshole, OM,

    Esteleth, my father blamed who I am on the fact that he shook me too much when I was a baby. (This is wrong on so many levels.) Let’s just say that I had very little to say to him during the last decade of his life. And I did not go to the funeral.

    Sometimes, it works out that way. And sometimes it works for the best that way.

    I wish I had something more uplifting to say.

    At least your sibling is supportive. Go with that. (But I am sure you already know that.)

  167. 667
    Predator Handshake

    Skin-graboid watch: I called my PCP office and they told me they can’t write a prescription without a visit, and the visit would be a waste of time unless I’ve developed symptoms. Of course, now that I’m thinking about it I have that “just brushed a spider off” itching and I’ve found a few tiny red dots on my upper arms if I really look for them. I had a tetanus shot a couple of days ago, though, so I’m trying to convince myself that it’s just a side effect from that. The cream sounds like it ain’t no thing, but the process of disinfecting all my clothes and furniture sounds like a real hassle.

  168. 668
    Jamie

    I was also going to post a link to the law in Michigan to allow bullying (for religious reasons), but I see that Janine has already done so at #662.

    I really wish that they would think their laws through though. I know that they just want to justify their ability to be bigots, but it could easily turn on them. I mean, there *are* other religions out there, and not all of them are Christian-friendly. This silly law would allow a Muslim for taking actions against a Christian according to their “moral convictions.”

  169. 669
    Janine Is Still An Asshole, OM,

    Jamie, follow the link I provided at 664. The senator does a great job of pointing out how dangerous the “anti-bullying law” is. Also, it is telling that the father of the teen the law is named for is furious about it.

  170. 670
    Janine Is Still An Asshole, OM,

    Also, you know that “religious” reasons should be read as “christian” reasons.

  171. 671
    Rossignol

    Esteleth, here’s hoping your parents try a bit harder.
    That shit is a small but significant part of the reason I’m still closeted (though I guess it’s a bit irrational on my part, since my parents aren’t recovering Christians.)

  172. 672
    Josh, Official SpokesGay

    I’m curious if anyone else’s browser is displaying some fucked-up-edness with Pharyngula. I’ve got text running into blocks of solid colors, and weird font outlining effects. Here are some screenshots:

    http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/215/pharyngual1.png/

    http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/20/pharyng2.png/

    Would love to know if it’s just me. :)

  173. 673
    Esteleth, [an error occurred while processing this directive]

    Janine,

    Thanks for the support. :)

    FWIW, I’ve got the support of essentially everyone on one side of the family (grandparents, uncles/aunts, siblings, etc) EXCEPT my parents.

    My late grandfather spent a lot of his time volunteering at his local AIDS charity and LGBT group and proudly wore a be-rainbowed “Ally” button on his coat. His son thought the local LGBT group coming to his funeral to give a truly lovely eulogy was in “poor taste.”

    *exasperation*

  174. 674
    Dhorvath, OM

    Yay, it’s a Josh sighting. Nope, mine is displaying perfectly normal.

  175. 675
    Josh, Official SpokesGay

    Howdy Dhorvath!

    Been scarce lately cuz of work. Now I have a cold and just sitting here on the couch is tiring me out. But not enough to retract my claws on the Predators thread. Grr.

  176. 676
    Dhorvath, OM

    Josh,
    Claws noted. Mmm hmm. You have an inescapable presence.

    Colds suck, I slept the couch the past three nights to keep my coughing down to a minimum.

  177. 677
    cicely

    It’s your misfortune and none of my own, Josh. Glad to “see” you; I was thinking of asking the troops if anyone knew whether you were buried in a snowbank or somesuch.

    Still worrying about blf.
    -

  178. 678
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    After getting triggered over at the MRA thread, I got to go to a 2-hour conference call about changing the width of the content area in our web CMS. And yes, we played buzzword bingo. And all three bingoed rather quickly.

    And then I come back and read Custador’s ranting. Man, he is seriously math challenged.

  179. 679
    myeck waters

    Math is the least of Custador’s weaknesses.

  180. 680
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    Hi Josh.

    At work and home, things look right. Must be you.

  181. 681
    Inaji

    :Declaring bankruptcy:

    Dawn, welcome to TET!

    TLC, Happiest of Solar Orbitry!

  182. 682
    Inaji

    Chas & Esme are all curled up in their igloo on the top floor of the rat condo. Aaaaaw.

  183. 683
    RichardAustin

    Esteleth:

    I don’t know if it helps, but I’ll say it anyway.

    You have no obligation to prove yourself to anyone, least of all your parents.

    It also might need to be said that the simple fact you’re related to someone does not mean you are required to love them, like them, or even think of them as decent human beings – “trying” or otherwise. Sometimes the best solution is to simply walk away and build a new “family” (in whatever sense that means to you) that loves you and respects you without qualification.

  184. 684
    Cipher

    **HUGS** to Ogvorbis :( I’m sorry, I got the impression that perhaps you had been triggered but I wasn’t sure. I’m sorry that happened to you and I’m sorry it got dredged up now.

  185. 685
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    I’m sorry that happened to you and I’m sorry it got dredged up now.

    No need to be sorry. You weren’t the pillar of the community. I appreciate the thoughts, though.

    Wading into the MRA threads seems almost cathartic to me. First, that I am not alone. Second, that there are others out there just as angry and just as willing to to wade through shit to make even an infintessimal difference. And it does make a difference. Pre-Pharyngula, I would have been one of the ones hoping that a prisoner in jail for a heinous crime gets raped. I would have been one of the ones laughing at a rape joke, not objecting. And you, and many others, are fighting the good fight. Keep safe.

  186. 686
    Weed(less) Monkey

    I don’t understand sandiseattle at all. For some unimaginable reason he’s been trying to rub shoulders with the commentariat for months, and then he just comes out as a

    http://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/2011/11/02/predators-among-us/comment-page-1/#comment-130816

    flaming asshole.

  187. 687
    Dhorvath, OM

    Not even sandiseattle gets sandiseattle.

  188. 688
    Ring Tailed Lemurian

    I’ve just left the rape thread and find Custador is being mentioned (unfavourably) here too. I didn’t say anything on the other thread (enough derailment there already) but I feel I should say something here.

    Custador got a lot of abuse (as well as argument). Yes, as well as derailing the thread from a discussion about how to prevent/minimize the rape of women, he got his figures totally confused and failed to realise some figures were about the annual number of rapes and some were about lifetime, or incarceration length, rapes, but it seemed fairly obvious to me from what he said that he had been a victim of male on male rape.

    I’m prepared to cut a rape victim some slack and suggest that Custador’s emotional reaction to his personal experiences lead to him grabbing the figures (from a confusing and sometimes contradictory set) which confirmed his bias and vastly overestimated the amount of m-on-m rape. He didn’t seem to be pushing the usual MRA vomit (like Hyperon) and I would have expected a little more empathy here. Poor show, imho.

  189. 689
    Cipher

    I’m prepared to cut a rape victim some slack and suggest that Custador’s emotional reaction to his personal experiences lead to him grabbing the figures (from a confusing and sometimes contradictory set) which confirmed his bias and vastly overestimated the amount of m-on-m rape. He didn’t seem to be pushing the usual MRA vomit (like Hyperon) and I would have expected a little more empathy here. Poor show, imho.

    Well, it’s worth pointing out that a lot of those responding to him are survivors too, so if we’re cutting slack… And he didn’t just use the broken figures, he also claimed that Ing accused all men of being rapists. Which is the common line, in fact, and deeply frustrating. Not to mention that in fact, he was treated rather patiently by most people who responded.

  190. 690
    Inaji

    Weed Monkey:

    For some unimaginable reason he’s been trying to rub shoulders with the commentariat for months

    Months? Sandi has been doing it for years. He’s a theist who thinks everyone here is absolutely awful, but frequently pretends to be one of the regulars. Not long ago, he kept trying to get access to PET on facebook, and someone not so familiar with him let him on, until Mattir found out and kicked his ass out. He had plans to get in and then invite all his theist pals in.

  191. 691
    Dhorvath, OM

    RTL,
    It would not be the first time I have missed pertinent points in someone’s comments during a long thread. I have gone back and I still don’t feel that anything Custador said would have lead me to assume anything about his personal experiences in how I replied. What am I missing?

  192. 692
    Inaji

    RTL:

    Poor show, imho.

    You obviously didn’t read mine @ 532 in that thread. I had to restrain myself considerably to be that considerate, by the way. Custador presented himself as an ass with fudged stats and when it was pointed out they were wrong, kept bull-headedly insisting they were right. Sorry, but the majority of rape victims are female. What he refused to understand is that not one regular here condones male rape. Not one. He then went on to say his point was actually “rape is rape, gender doesn’t matter.” Well, it does matter, because it’s women who are taught from the earliest years all the rules and that if something bad happens, it’s most likely gonna be our fault.

    The dynamic is very different and his refusal to face that was not remotely helpful.

    I have gone out of my way, in one thread after another, to help and encourage survivors, men and women both. If he needed to share an experience, he would have been encouraged and empathized with, to say the least. Ignoring every single comment before his (many of which did talk about male rape) and accusing us all of being stupid and dismissive was not bound to get a good response.

  193. 693
    Dhorvath, OM

    Ah, nevermind, it is much deeper in his replies before I would have had any chance of making that connection. I couldn’t have put that together until a hundred comments or so had passed. You are correct, a failure on my part to read with concern.

  194. 694
    Weed(less) Monkey

    Caine, Fleur du Mal

    Months? Sandi has been doing it for years.

    Thank you for the correction. I was thinking about writing “aeons” but decided that might have been a bit of an exaggeration.

  195. 695
    The Ys

    Esteleth:

    That sucks. I’m glad the rest of your family is supportive and sees your parents’ behaviour for what it is.

    ————————-

    @ RTL:

    There are a lot of rape survivors here. The fact that we are rape survivors is irrelevant, however. There is no reason whatsoever for any of us to put up with skewed bullshit and derailing.

    The thread was on a specific subject. It’s not like we were preventing him from discussing his choice of subject anywhere else on the web.

  196. 696
    Jamie

    Sorry, what is PET? I’ve heard it mentioned only recently, and only about sandiseattle trying to get in.

  197. 697
    Inaji

    Jamie, it’s the Pharyngula Endless Thread on facebook. People there use their real names and such, so it is very carefully guarded and you have to be known here and vetted before being allowed in.

  198. 698
    Dhorvath, OM

    It’s our super secret facebook group.

  199. 699
    First Approximation

    Pharyngula Endless Thread on facebook

    Yeah, it’s kinda weird that the ‘Pharyngula Endless Thread’ (PET) is neither on FTB Pharyngula or SB Pharyngula.

  200. 700
    The Sailor

    Conga rats to the (sleeping) Conga Rats!
    Seems like Chas accommodated & Esme acclimated pretty quickly.
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    I haz a small victory at work today. I’ve been working for a few weeks on a program that cracks a raw data file from an OCT (Optical Coherence Tomography) instrument and it was tough slogging. The XML meta data was wrong. (Yes, 0 thru 12 = 13, but 1 thru 7 is seven, not 8!) That sounds obvious but it takes awhile to sort thru 55k rows of data to suss it out.

    But I got it to work last week and plotted the curves of the retinal layers. Did not get the results we expected in some files. My boss had told me to recheck my work. A fair request, but I had re-checked it before I reported it to her.

    Today I proved to her I was right. Backwards & forwards. She agreed. Either the instrument was wrong, the operator was incompetent, or some patients have really fucked up eyes.

    Step 2) Do a statistical analysis on the differences.
    Step 3) ?
    Step 4) Profit!

    We’re slightly limited here because we are analyzing raw data from an instrument that while being FDA approved is not necessarily accurate. We have to reverse engineer where they get the numbers from and we can’t have access to the rest of the patients’ files.

  201. 701
    Weed(less) Monkey

    I got rid of Facebook a couple of years ago, but damn. The possibility of joining PET makes it much more palatable.

  202. 702
    RichardAustin

    Jamie:

    PET = Pharyngula Endless Thread. It’s the shorthand for the Facebook group and to distinguish it from TET (which is here).

    Re: custador:

    I stay away from those threads (I often can’t keep up at work, too many things to do). So, I just jumped in and read. His first comment was okay if a bit of “you skipped everything up until you posted, didn’t you” to it. His second already starts insisting that male-on-male is the most common kind of rape(“Male-on-male rape is anecdotally far more common than male-on-female rape”) – a statement which is likely false but certainly unsupported, and which is a normal kind of tactic in these threads for MRAs: it’s a thread discussing issues for women, but we need to make it about men.

    He probably deserves anything the Horde threw at him – which, knowing the Horde, was little more than “you’re a fucking idiot, go fuck yourself” in various terms and methodologies.

    You get three swings; either back off and learn or you get the porcupine.

  203. 703
    Alexandra (née Audley)

    Jamie:

    … and only about sandiseattle trying to get in.

    Well, fuck. I’m a mod of PET and I hadn’t even noticed– the membership requests have slowed down A LOT lately, it seems.

    Anyway, just baked brownies (with coconut, yay!) and I’m listening to the new Florence + The Machine album. It’s more “produced” sounding than Lungs and… I don’t know. It’s not bad, it’s just not grabbing me like her first album. I’ll give it a few more listens before I make my final judgement.

  204. 704
    Alexandra (née Audley)

    PS Caine,
    I love that you named the new rattie Esme. ♥!

  205. 705
    Ring Tailed Lemurian

    Classical Cypher

    Well, it’s worth pointing out that a lot of those responding to him are survivors too, so if we’re cutting slack…

    The logic of that escapes me. I would have expected fellow victims to be more understanding, not more abusive.

    And he didn’t just use the broken figures, he also claimed that Ing accused all men of being rapists. Which is the common line, in fact, and deeply frustrating.

    Well, that “all men are rapists” line has been used by various people (not here, I mean historically) and it’s not completely crazy for Custador have missed all the subtleties in Ing’s post (I had to reread it carefully to make sure what was meant). And Custador didn’t argue about that when he had been corrected.

    Not to mention that in fact, he was treated rather patiently by most people who responded.

    Yes, most. It’s the minority response I was responding to.

    ———————————————————-

    Caine

    You obviously didn’t read mine @ 532 in that thread.

    I wonder what your response would be to someone who equally erroneously said that to you.
    (No I don’t really. I know exactly what it would be like) :)

    I was commenting that I thought some of the response to Custador were unnecessarily abusive. Was I supposed to also list all the non-abusive posts?

    ———————————————————–

    Dvorath – His first hint was in his first post, #351, and then, more explicitly, again in #452 (of the Predator thread).

  206. 706
    Ring Tailed Lemurian

    Dhvorath, one day I’ll get your name right the first time. Don’t know what it is about your name and my blind spot to it. Sorry.

  207. 707
    Dhorvath, OM

    WeedMonkey,
    Come over to the dark side.

  208. 708
    Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls

    WeedMonkey,
    Come over to the dark grog side.

    *sorry, couldn’t resist, carry on*

  209. 709
    Cipher

    The logic of that escapes me. I would have expected fellow victims to be more understanding, not more abusive.

    If it’s acceptable for Custador to, in a fit of emotion, spout false facts and refuse to acknowledge their inconsistency, why is it not acceptable for other survivors, being triggered by the bullshit, to respond with anger?

  210. 710
    Dhorvath, OM

    ring tailedlemurian,

    Dhvorath, one day I’ll get your name right the first time.

    Or the second.
    Ain’t no bother to me, just don’t try to pronounce it. Bad things will happen. Bad things.
    _

    I would not have got that out of 351, and it wasn’t until 452 and more particularly 456 that I would have had any chance of understanding. Still, I read those and should have done a better job of reading more than the first sentences.

  211. 711
    PZ Myers

    NEW THREAD!

  212. 712
    Ring Tailed Lemurian

    Dhorvath

    Or the second

    That one was intended to be a joke.

  213. 713
    The Sailor

    ring tailedlemurian – “Dhvorath, one day I’ll get your name right the first time.”

    But today is not that day, grasshopper.

  214. 714
    dawnbyrnes

    Thanks for the welcomes, guys!

    @BattleAubergine – awesome username! And I hope things improve for you, hon. *hug*

    @Esteleth – if push comes to shove, put your sanity and health above any affection for your bs’ing parents. I did with my racist, biphobic, conservative mother after she went off the rails and abused me one too many times, and I’m happier for it. *hug*

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