Around FtB »« Why I am an atheist – Inflection

[Lounge #366]

This is the lounge. You can discuss anything you want, but you will do it kindly. Shhh—don’t wake the baby skunk.

Status: Heavily Moderated; Previous thread

Comments

  1. A. R says

    dianne: The whole Hep D superinfection thing is weird as all hell, IIRC, it steals envelope proteins from Hep B. Also, there is a possibility of Hep F.

  2. Azkyroth, Former Growing Toaster Oven says

    A second apology, for those offended by my dumbass attempt at not offending.

    Accepted. :)

  3. dianne says

    I can’t figure out if any of the candidate hep Fs turned out to be “real” or not. And G only occurs in HIV coinfection or something? I knew I shouldn’t have slept through that last medicine grand rounds…D is a weird one. I keep hoping everyone will get vaccinated for B and it will just go away on its own. IIRC, hep B is an obligate human host virus so eradicating it is a possibility. The vaccination programs in the far east (reached from where I am by traveling west) have already reduced infection and HCC rates. Now if we can get the anti-vaxxers under control and stop the CIA from creating fake vaccine programs (throwing the real ones into ill repute), we might get somewhere on a world wide scale.

  4. Stevarious says

    @SC

    People will like it or not, criticize or mock it or not, choose to comment at or read your blog or not, and that’s it. Get on with the substance, man.

    He’s a philosopher. An extended treatise on the ethics of a comment policy IS substance, to him.

    I’ve been with him more or less up till this point in this series – a few points I mildly disagreed with but nothing major – but he lost me on this one.

  5. Azkyroth, Former Growing Toaster Oven says

    ….I take it you’re not supposed to exercise to the point of flu-like symptoms?

    *whimpers*

  6. Azkyroth, Former Growing Toaster Oven says

    I have had feminists try to dox me

    What the fuck does this mean?

    Find out and publicize an online poster’s real-world personal identification, as I understand it.

  7. FossilFishy (Νεοπτόλεμος's spellchecker) says

    And sometimes feeding an infant can go right off the rails. My wife’s milk came in just as my daughter’s jaundice was peaking. The combination of difficulty in suckling and a lower energy level meant she just stopped trying.

    We were keeping a diary of when she got fed and for how long, and it wasn’t till we consulted it that we realised that it’d been eight hours since she’d eaten, hooray sleep deprivation induced inattention. At that point we couldn’t rouse her. We hadn’t tried to get her to take a bottle yet, but if we had maybe when she started to refuse the nipple we could have kept her going with formula. Assuming of course we did a better job of noticing the problem.

    As it was an ambulance was called and I got to see first hand just how effective our medical system can be. You want to get through an emergency ward quickly? Show up with a newborn in distress. It was like magic, doors were opened and we didn’t stop moving until suddenly we were in a room with four people intent on helping our baby girl.

    The following is what I wrote to one of the nurses who was there that night. I did so specifically to give credit where it was due and to counter the usual “Thank God!” nonsense that medical professionals hear all the time.

    Kirsten, [Mrs. Fishy] pointed out that you were the nurse who ran in Em’s IV first try after several others had been jabbing at her futilely. To me you are, and will always be, the nurse with the magic hands who saved my daughter’s life.

    I cannot say just how serious the situation actually was, perhaps we overreacted. I’m more than willing to admit the possibility; I’m no medical expert and the ambulance driver seemed to think we were worried over nothing. (He has no idea just how close he came to getting beaten for that little act of compassion-less snark btw.)

    Then again perhaps not, when your 3 day old daughter refuses to eat (willful, headstrong, clever, beautiful little beast that she is) something has to be done and you did it. No fuss, no muss, just get in and get it done. You were the very essence of competent professionalism and I have a hard time expressing the elation I felt when I heard the words: “It’s in.”

    You see, my daughter stands at the center of my world and three days into her life it was driven home just how big a part of me was now tied up in her. And there you were in the midst of that revelation, doing your job, just one more task in an evening full of such things. And there I was, dumbfounded, sleep-deprived and scared in a way that was entirely new to me. Scared for another human being who had come to be the heart of my definition of love.

    Please keep all that in mind as I say this, these two words carry a freight beyond anything one could reasonably expect of eight little letters and two short syllables: Thank you.

  8. A. R says

    Dianne: Well, G doesn’t actually cause Hep, but it is IIRC, associated with HIV co-infection. Also, IIRC, one of the F candidates looked promising a year to two ago. WRT B eradication, you would still have to deal with carrier infection of yet to be, or un- vaccinated persons. We never had to deal with that with Smallpox.

  9. dianne says

    Ah, finally stopped being lazy and went to medline. There is a virus called hepatitis G or GB virus-C, but it doesn’t actually cause hepatitis. Per this article anyway.

  10. Antiochus Epiphanes says

    I have retreated to mor comfortable topics. Turns out that aphids synthesize carotenoids endogenously and may use them to capture solar energy.
     
     

    Bad. Ass.

  11. says

    Find out and publicize an online poster’s real-world personal identification, as I understand it.

    The YouTube people seem weirdly obsessed with it – denying that they would ever do it while frequently accusing their enemies of trying to do it to them.

  12. dianne says

    Vaccination for B can and should start at birth and children of carriers can be given gamma globulin, to reduce infection. If only people didn’t buy the “too many too soon” propaganda. Not that the first vaccination guarantees immunity, of course.

  13. says

    Or, y’know, go to Patheos.

    I had something in my feed reader the other day that I can’t find now, a commenter at Hemant’s gleefully remarking on how the recent additions to Pathetic, sorry Patheos, show how bad and uncivil FtB is yadayadayada.

    I hope they are happy at their new and oh so civil platform.

    I’m off to buy an e-guitar.

  14. A. R says

    dianne: That would probably work. Unfortunately, far too many people do buy the “Too Many Too Soon” bullshite. Of course, optimal immunity is achieved after the full series, but there’s no reason that one or two couldn’t confer some pretty strong partial.

  15. dianne says

    Ironically, the one thing we (think we) know about early childhood immunity is that too LITTLE antigen exposure is bad for small children. At least, low antigen exposure is associated with asthma and allergies.

  16. A. R says

    dianne: Yep. As George Carlin (and my intro immunology professor) once said: Your immune system needs fuckin’ target practice.

  17. Azkyroth, Former Growing Toaster Oven says

    dianne: Yep. As George Carlin (and my intro immunology professor) once said: Your immune system needs fuckin’ target practice.

    So allergies is your immune system being the gun nut who sleeps cuddled up to his rifle and blasts his kid sneaking in late?

  18. A. R says

    Azkyroth: That would be autoimmunity, allergies would be more like shooting the postman or random (but non-threatening) people who walk into your house.

  19. PatrickG says

    @ Ms. Daisy Cutter:

    You are indeed a Vile Human Being for causing me to look at the comments section in that linked article. VILE.

    Brain. Needs bleach. Now.

  20. PatrickG says

    A. R: My girlfriend just happened to walk by as I opened that. It was good for a laugh when she basically said “what the fuck?”

  21. ibyea says

    @Azkyroth
    That would describe my immune system. Stupid immune system keeps itching and swelling my skin for no reason at all.

  22. Happiestsadist, opener of the Crack of Doom says

    Likewise, ibyea. Not ten minutes ago, I started getting all hive-y and itchy. And the tiny spot on my cheek where I scratched looks like I got hit. Meh. Happens. Im not in public or around people who will annoyingly freak out.

  23. thunk, circumzenithal arc says

    Well ouch ibyea, HS.

    I was raised for a few years in a city widely regarded as filthy, which could explain why I’m not as allergic as some other people.

  24. Happiestsadist, opener of the Crack of Doom says

    NO.

    If I am this itchy, so is everyone else.

    (More realistically: Will do.)

  25. ibyea says

    @Happiestsadist
    Annoyingly for me, I spend most of the time working in a deli. Not good, since you know, scratching my back and handling food is not exactly sanitary. I hate it, it never stops, and the only relief is that hydrocortisone anti itch cream.

  26. PatrickG says

    @ Happiestsadist:

    I stood outside at dusk for a good half hour. In Kentucky. I am now itchy in places I really don’t want to mention.

    Damn bugs.

  27. Happiestsadist, opener of the Crack of Doom says

    As long as I take my pills and avoid allergens that aren’t my cats, I’m usually fine. After spending a bit under 20 years with some mystery skin issue, I have become a master of not scratching while I’m awake most of the time.

  28. thunk, circumzenithal arc says

    avoid allergens that aren’t my cats

    Now I’m really confused… what’s the point of cats then if you’re allergic to them?

    More generally, what is with people who absolutely love homicidal felids?

  29. chigau (違わない) says

    *starts rocking chair*
    When I was a youngster…
    I went to the same small school for 9 years, during the 60s.
    Out of the 200(tops) kids I knew, 2 had alergies or asthma.
    Now, I know about 200 kids and at least 20 have alergies or asthma.
    /anecdote
    What’s up with that?

  30. Happiestsadist, opener of the Crack of Doom says

    PatrickG: That is why my lone experiment with outdoor sexytimes was never repeated.

    I’m just using the store-brand desloratadine. Seems to keep things pretty well under control, especially given the whole “allergic to my own pets, one of whom is almost always on my lap” thing. Also, no soaps/shampoos with sulfates, I am ridiculously sensitive to them. That alone cleared up a lot of the problem.

  31. PatrickG says

    @ thunk, circumzenithal arc:

    Criticism of homicidal felids should be taken to the Thunderdome, because any attack on love of such is clearly a personal attack, and I must defend the kittehs with extreme language.

  32. PatrickG says

    @ chigau:

    I’d hazard that some portion of that is due to improved diagnosis or a geographical difference, but I’d refer you to:

    http://www.californiabreathing.org/

    http://www.arb.ca.gov/research/asthma/asthma.htm

    That’s specifically for California, but there’s a lot of interesting data linked to from those two sites. I’d offer a general comment that increased population density near sites that impact air quality plays a large role, despite advances in control technologies.

    In particular, diesel exhaust is one air quality issue that hasn’t quite kept pace when it comes to control. Particulate matter emissions from diesel have gone up significantly along transit corridors as populations expand/become denser. This is a representative study (London, in this case), though it focuses more on impacts of people with asthma than triggered events in mild cases. I could link you more stuff if you’re interested, but I’m not really in the mood for a lit review at the moment…. late night, I’m lazy. :)

  33. Happiestsadist, opener of the Crack of Doom says

    thunk: Because my enjoyment of them is greater than any discomfort they cause, the latter of which can be easily mitigated, and developed late enough in my life that I already had a pleasant association with fuzzy cute animals?

    I’m also allergic to kiwifruit and pineapple, both of which I also like, but do not partake of. Much. Often. Especially not after the last time with the kiwifruit.

    I think it comes down in my case to intense stubbornness, actually.

  34. PatrickG says

    @ Happiestsadist:

    That is why my lone experiment with outdoor sexytimes was never repeated.

    Outdoor sexytimes are much easier to accomplish in coastal California. Kentucky… not so much. :)

  35. Happiestsadist, opener of the Crack of Doom says

    It was fun at the time, but then there’s conifer sap on my hands, and bug bites everywhere on both of us. Apparently they like asses?

  36. Happiestsadist, opener of the Crack of Doom says

    Well, we both had pretty excellent butts, so I can’t fault them for their taste. It was next to a pheasant preserve. We decided the pheasants needed a demonstration of what they need to be doing to be less of a threatened species. *sage nod*

  37. PatrickG says

    a demonstration of what they need to be doing to be less of a threatened species.

    Haha! Well played. Well played indeed.

  38. Happiestsadist, opener of the Crack of Doom says

    The ring-necked kind, so yes. I think. They live up where I’m from as well.

  39. A. R says

    Happiestsadist: Oh OK. I’ve always preferred Red Pheasants for some reason. Perhaps it’s because I can imagine them speaking to each other in brogue.

  40. Happiestsadist, opener of the Crack of Doom says

    Most other varieties of pheasant are, well, prettier. Though the ring-necked ones are nice.

  41. Happiestsadist, opener of the Crack of Doom says

    They were, chigau. I don’t know why they are being preserved as an introduced species, I assume hunters. But then, my home province is a very strange place.

  42. Happiestsadist, opener of the Crack of Doom says

    When perplexed by anything in the province of New Brunswick, assume rednecks. (Note: I am referring to my own extended family.)

  43. Happiestsadist, opener of the Crack of Doom says

    We’re a different kind of weird, though Alberta does have many transplants from my province. :P

    We export lumber, fish, and our own crazy people.

  44. chigau (違わない) says

    Happiestsadist
    We (Alberta) used to import Newfies to work in the OilSands.
    (but, to be honest, no Albertan can tell the difference(s) among anyone east of Manitoba)
    [irony]
    [not really]

  45. Happiestsadist, opener of the Crack of Doom says

    Plenty of NB people out that way working the oilsands as well.

    How to tell East Coasters apart: leave out a plate of Jiggs’ Dinner and a bottle of Keith’s. The Newfie will go for the Jiggs’ Dinner, the Nova Scotian will pounce on the Keith’s, and the NBer will be loudly complaining in an Acadian accent that they’re totally different from the other two, and was forgotten again. :P

  46. Happiestsadist, opener of the Crack of Doom says

    PEI is weird. I’ve known like one person from there, ever. Though they were really nice, it seems weird that I don’t know anyone else who’s from there. I don’t think they let people leave.

    Jiggs’ Dinner is horrifying, as is pretty much all well-known Newfie food. FLIPPER PIE. WHAT. NO. (I said, with a vicious PMS craving for poutine.)

  47. chigau (違わない) says

    *Thinks*
    I have never met anyone from PEI.
    *oh now I’m scared*
    *whatif they’re, like, ninja?*
    [cod cheeks]

  48. Happiestsadist, opener of the Crack of Doom says

    I think there are Anne of Green Gables-looking Terminators keeping people from leaving the island.

  49. chigau (違わない) says

    On an note from another thread, there are alot of Japanese Anne of Green Gables cultist going to PEI.
    What does that mean, eh?

  50. Happiestsadist, opener of the Crack of Doom says

    Chigau, oh, I know about the Anne-cultists. Trust me. Something about having had red hair when I worked in tourism and a lot of people coming through NB on the way to PEI. So many Anne-fans.

    Also, I am reminded of the way I found out that the place I had just moved into, a lovely Victorian place divided into a B&B and apartments, was a stop on the “historic downtown” walk. I found this out shortly after we moved there, when I went to get the mail in ratty boxers and a kids’ undershirt and found myself surprised by the crowd on onlookers in front of my porch.

    There are a few nice things about living in a modern building in a big city now.

    A.R.: They had to get far from the Anne-bots.

  51. chigau (違わない) says

    Happiestsadist

    I went to get the mail in ratty boxers and a kids’ undershirt and found myself surprised by the crowd on onlookers in front of my porch

    I’m ROTFL. You are so in the holiday powerpoint of many Japanese holidayers.

  52. Happiestsadist, opener of the Crack of Doom says

    Oh, I know it. And it’s hilarious enough to me that it’s not even triggering.

  53. says

    Good morning
    Not freaking out yet.

    Outdoor sexytimes: I have the bad feeling that by the time Mr. and I get the opportunity to have them again, we’re going to be too old to do it on the ground…

    +++

    dianne: That would probably work. Unfortunately, far too many people do buy the “Too Many Too Soon” bullshite. Of course, optimal immunity is achieved after the full series, but there’s no reason that one or two couldn’t confer some pretty strong partial.

    Antivaxxers are people who induce real Raaaaaaaaaaaaaaaage in me. Did I like it when people stuck needles into my kids? ‘Cause not, who likes it when somebody makes your newborn cry? Did I like it when they were all cranky and getting a temperature afterwards? NO, hell not.
    But I had to make it through a hell lot of those “childhood diseases” and I’m damn going to prevent my kids from having them,

  54. birgerjohansson says

    Itch?
    Gary Larson cartoon: Friend visiting dude in hospital. Looks at cast, says “does it itch? Man, when I had a cast it was itching a lot. Are you sure it’s not itching? ”
    — — — — — — — —
    Don’t diss Canadians. We need them to tease ´Merkuns. They are to USA what Ned Flanders is to Homer Simpson; an annoyingly perfect neighbour that makes your own flaws stand out in contrast :-)

  55. chigau (違わない) says

    an annoyingly perfect neighbour that makes your own flaws stand out in contrast

    Can I get that on a t-shirt?

  56. says

    Damn, feministe is blocked at work. Must check later. Fincke was giving me the irrits, so I don’t want to go there any more. But well done to all the attempted educators still struggling on! Is it a lost cause yet?

    Also, I see John M is being annoying again. But would you mind please not going on about “hack”, because I just can’t hack that kind of shitting on my vernacular :) It has different connotations here, specifically with no blame attached, and NO implication that one SHOULD somehow be able to cope with whatever bullshit it is that one is just bloody well not putting up with any more. Mr Annoying Pedant *could* have explained that and avoided a lot of fuss, but noooo, that would be too reasonable.

    And I do not wish to know about anybody’s nipples. WTF – SPLITTING? AGH NO!

  57. John Morales says

    Alethea, were I a woman, I suspect I’d think split nipples would be nothing compared to an episiotomy.

    <shudder>

  58. blf says

    the rats (or a rat) ate through my laptop’s power cord.

    Forty-foot high killer rats can obvious eat whatever they want, besides climbing whatever they want, sleeping where-ever they want, and basically anything else they want. Often without realizing they did it.

    Welcome to the world of monster-breeding. (The smelly vats and lightening bolts are optional. Employing an Igor is recommended.)

  59. carlie says

    I’ve also read some interesting things about rubber particulates being correlated with asthma rates – all those tires on the road are throwing off bits of rubber into the air all the time. But I have no idea how one would separate the effects of tire detritus and exhaust fumes when the correlation is just higher asthma rates next to highways.

    Can I mini-rant for a moment? I went to an informational session for a volunteer in the schools type thing last night. During it, one of the older gentlemen asked whether the kids could call them by their first name, and the instructor said no (it’s one of the ways the teachers maintain a level of authority, and it is not breached inside school walls. Adults are referred to by last name). Later on she was handing out assignments and apologized to him for having just written his name on the sheet, as she found out after that he was “Dr.” so and so. He laughed and said that was ok, and then said that was why he asked the question about names, because he wondered “if ‘Dr.’ would be too intimidating”. She said she thought not. And I sat there fuming, thinking “You know, you COULD go by Mr. at the school. Nobody is forcing you to use Dr. all the time.” But I didn’t say anything, because I’ve never met those people before and it seemed a bit harsh. But jeez, I hate people who do that. You know when it’s appropriate to call yourself “Dr.”? At work, where it’s relevant. Know where it’s not appropriate? ANYWHERE ELSE.

  60. StevoR says

    There is someone commenting as Steve R on at least one other FTB blog – Ophelia Benson’s in the recent “Dawkins disses Mormonism” thread.

    To clarify – I am NOT the same person as Steve R. Common enough name I guess. But potentially confusing here. Just so y’all know.

    Contemplating changing my username to avoid that confusion. Will let you know if I do that naturally.

  61. John Morales says

    Setár:

    -looks at the title of Fincke’s latest bit of rhetorical diarrhoea-

    Why are people still defending this guy?

    Who’s defending him?

  62. John Morales says

    StevoR:

    Contemplating changing my username to avoid that confusion. Will let you know if I do that naturally.

    What about if you do it unnaturally?

    (For lack of a comma, irreverent jocularity accrued)

  63. says

    John
    You’re being an ass again. Please stop or take it to Thunderdome.

    +++
    So, I’m back and things went pretty smoothly. So, yay, real progress. Funny enough: all the lecturers I liked can remember me. Those I couldn’t stand don’t. Probably that’s a good thing.

    Now tell me why I’m making Mr.’s favourite dish to celebrate that I had a good week? OK, OTOH I like Canneloni a lot, too.

  64. Beatrice says

    Giliell,

    Congrats. I hope your studies continue as smoothly as they have started :)

    I’m sorry if you already mentioned it, but which program are you in?
    (Wild guess: languages?)

  65. says

    John
    You ain’t. I oppose animal slurs, they haven’t done anything wrong.

    beatrice
    thanx. English and Spanish as teacher. The pedagogy part will be a lot more work ’cause tehy really reformed that for the better . It sucked when I started…

  66. John Morales says

    Spanish as a teacher?

    (One of my sisters is qualified as an teacher by the (la) Real Academia Española — not something many non-Spaniards achieve.

    (She’s spent nearly 20 years teaching French, English and Spanish overseas — including a two-year stint in Saudi Arabia.

    You’d think she was ridiculously Islamophobic with her opinion of the place, but she has lived there as a woman)

  67. John Morales says

    Gah!

    I just looked at the Wikipedia entry for the RAE, and it’s pretty feeble (and the extremely poor translations therein are pretty bad.

    E.g. “The RAE’s emblem is a fiery crucible, and its motto is “Limpia, fija y da esplendor” (“[It] cleans, sets, and casts splendour”)

    No, no, no!

    That should read “Clean, unchanging and resplendent” as a first (literal) approximation.

    Bah)

  68. John Morales says

    [Also, what's happened to Pelamun?

    I liked it (a lot!) when an actual linguist was a regular here]

  69. McC2lhu saw what you did there. says

    @Audley, & Alethea (because you waaaAAAAAHHHHH, FREAKED OUT!)

    The nipples do not need to split! Pick up some Lansinoh lanolin cream while you are nursing. It will protect against chapped/sore nipples while you are breastfeeding and (according to their propagandists) have made it safe to use even if you don’t wash it off before feeding. Having a hungies babby does not have to result in unexpected extreme body mods.

  70. McC2lhu saw what you did there. says

    John Morales @96:

    I think the RAE did it on purpose as a field study to see how many cases of apoplexy they could cause by poor/literal translating.

  71. birgerjohansson says

    “Novel non-antibiotic agents against MRSA and common strep infections” http://medicalxpress.com/news/2012-09-non-antibiotic-agents-mrsa-common-strep.html

    — — — — — —
    Having an Igor is bloody compulsory in some fields of work.
    When the workplace contains saws, rotating blades or other dangers an Igor is your best chance of getting the fingers/ ear/ entrails stiched back in time.
    — — — — — — —
    “You’d think she was ridiculously Islamophobic with her opinion of the place, but she has lived there as a woman”
    My brother -a building engineer- worked there. He has worked all over the world but Saudi was his least favourite place.
    And he worked in East Germany when it still existed!
    — — — — — — —
    Dianne
    “too LITTLE antigen exposure is bad for small children. At least, low antigen exposure is associated with asthma and allergies”
    Grew up on a farm. Never had allergies.
    Major cat-related problem: Shirt shredded by friendly cat resting on top (with me inside). Smell from when said cat does not cover his mess properly with sand at the litterbox.

  72. ImaginesABeach says

    It appears to me that John Morales is well suited to discussions over at Camels with Hammers. Those parts of his personality that occasionally make the Horde unhappy here (ability to avoid emotional responses, pedantry) serve him well over there.

  73. carlie says

    Seriously, that’s one of those things that “they” tell you will never ever ever ever happen if you’re nursing correctly.

    Oh no, it won’t happen if you’re nursing correctly – only if yer doin’ it wrong. Very wrong. And if you don’t go to a lactaction consultant for a week or so because you don’t know shit about breastfeeding, and “it ought to get better soon, right?” and then only go because your husband says if he hears you gasp like that at latch-on one more time he’s taking the baby, giving it a bottle, and not letting it near you again. Jeez, you’d think those intelligently designed babies would know how to do it right the first time, wouldn’t you?

    And second on the Lansinoh. That stuff is more precious than its weight in gold. Go to the store, look at the tube, balk at the price, and then buy it anyway. One tube will probably last the entire length of breastfeeding time with some left over.

  74. huntstoddard says

    I just added adblock to chrome. Bald fat, elderly guy who turns into bald, elderly, freakishly muscled guy is what pushed me over the brink. I hate to have to do that, since it ultimately deprives blogs of revenue, but there’s only so much a guy can take. Too bad advertisers don’t realize they’re their own worst enemy.

  75. carlie says

    Jeez, and I just wrote a big post there! I still refuse to get a Patheos account, because I just don’t need another account to deal with. And I’m in moderation, probably because I used bad words several times in my post, even though they were as examples, or is he moderating all comments now rather than deleting them after the fact? I guess it doesn’t matter now that he’s moving.

  76. Beatrice says

    Some of our commenters must be psychic: Read Camels With Hammers At Patheos, Starting Today

    Ha, ha, ha.

    Considering the kind of commentators than hang out on Firendly Atheist, that should prove interesting.

  77. Beatrice says

    carlie,

    I can see your comment, if this the one:

    I sat and thought awhile, trying to figure out why I “police” the use of sexist/ableist/racist/homophobic/transphobic slurs so much, but bristle so much as being policed on the use of terms like “asshole”.

  78. Beatrice says

    Fincke:

    What I am saying though is that you can thoroughly take abusive people to task without crossing the line into insults and I fear that as cathartic as insults might be (and even as they may be valuable in certain contexts in ordinary life where they’re one of the only recourses of self-defense), I see them constantly escalating hostility towards women and I see the seething repressed rage of the members of dominant classes that become all the more hard headed against the causes of social justice that I care about.

    Stop insulting bigots because your insults escalate the hostility! If you were just nicer to bigots, they would treat you better!
    *puke*

    Ugh. Seriously, good riddance.

  79. John Morales says

    rorschach, (sigh).

    So Fincke is going to the Dark Side.

    (Ah well, I am not impressed and have said as much there)

  80. says

    So I lost my RDO. I’m back to straight 8s starting October 1 unless I can provide medical documentation about the fact that I get massive panic attacks. The only way I can get that is by getting a therapist… and the only reason I haven’t done that yet is because I get panic attacks when I start to think about getting a therapist.

    So essentially, I’m hosed. Gonna go back to wasting my sick and annual leave now, or just sit there in my cube and hope no one talks to me on the panic attack days cause I don’t want to flip out on my work colleagues.

    Oh yea, and guess what. I’m having a panic attack now.

  81. ChasCPeterson says

    You know when it’s appropriate to call yourself “Dr.”?

    I remember as a kid the first time I called my dad at work (he’s a PhD chemist but worked in industry). A secretary answered the phone “Dr. Peterson’s office.” It freaked me out. I knew my dad wasn’t a Doctor!

    When one isn’t actually a doctor? ;)

    Nope. In that case it’s obnoxious (though not as obnoxious as listing a series of unearned degrees).

    ;)

  82. John Morales says

    Katherine, RDO=Rostered Day Off?

    I’m back to straight 8s starting October 1 unless I can provide medical documentation about the fact that I get massive panic attacks. The only way I can get that is by getting a therapist… and the only reason I haven’t done that yet is because I get panic attacks when I start to think about getting a therapist.

    Nasty. :(

    I’m tempted to advise you to bite the bullet and get that therapist’s certificate and so trade short-term pain stress for longer-term unhappiness and stress, but then I have no experience with panic attacks and I’m pretty sure you know that is an option, so I shan’t.

    All I can do is encourage you to do whatever you can for yourself, and wish you well.

    So: best wishes and may things work out for you.

  83. Louis says

    Katherine Lorraine,

    That’s horrible. Is there any way to get a therapist without inducing panic attacks? Is there anyone who can help/intervene in a way that minimises panic? Or is it simply the very thought of getting a therapist (for perhaps financial reasons, I obviously don’t know why you’re panicking) that triggers you?

    {Hugs} if you want them.

    Louis

  84. dianne says

    Katherine Lorraine: Do you have a primary care doctor? She or he might be able to diagnose you if your panic attacks are classic. You’d still need a therapist because a PCP isn’t qualified to treat panic attacks, but you might be able to get the diagnosis, which would take the pressure off of you at work and might make the situation enough better for you to be able to tolerate the stress of getting a therapist. (If this advice sounds like it completely wouldn’t work for you, just ignore it. I don’t know your situation and may be absolutely wrong about it…I’m adding this just in case having this advice sitting here increases your anxiety. If it does, flush it. I’m just some random nut on the internet.)

  85. blf says

    Dr works very well in a nym of evil. Dr Horrible, Dr No, Dr Darkheart etc.

    Piffling amateurs. Dr Myers (and his even-more-nasty side-kick, Dr Meyers), Dr Poopyhead, et al., are examples of true evviiillll…

  86. says

    Well at least in other news is going well. I’m editing the first draft of my book, and I’ve come upon a part that I want to poll the viewing audience about:

    I describe a character as an “older tallis woman” without stating her exact age. (A tallis is a hyperactive, science-minded, steampunk race of dragon-people – utterly devoted and focused on (usually) a singular science – i.e. pathology and engineering as per the two tallis in my story.)

    Would it be better to explicitly say “Ona was a 44-year old tallis woman?” Or leave it up to the following sentence, “Age had treated her well, with a still youthful appearance despite a few streaks of grey hair through her long, black hair” to explain how old she is?

    @Louis:

    I think if someone basically sat there and forced me to make the call I would be able to do it.

    The problem isn’t the finances, it’s the finality. It’s the fact calling up a therapist is going to put a start to the “cure” for my gender identity problems. That’s the most terrifying thing to me because I’m going to have to tell my boss, my family, my friends, my work colleagues that I’m going to therapy to deal with gender dysphoria. I don’t know who I’ll alienate through that group. I’ve also spent the past three years building myself up as a subject matter expert, and changing my gender will very likely slam the door on three years of work.

    It’s scary as fuck, and I just can’t deal with it by myself.

  87. dianne says

    It’s the fact calling up a therapist is going to put a start to the “cure” for my gender identity problems. That’s the most terrifying thing to me because I’m going to have to tell my boss, my family, my friends, my work colleagues that I’m going to therapy to deal with gender dysphoria. I don’t know who I’ll alienate through that group.

    Two thoughts that may be reassuring: If your therapist can’t deal with-or not deal with- the gender identity issues in the way you want them to be dealt with, get another therapist. Therapists are NOT there to bully you. Also, there’s no need to tell your coworkers why you’re going to therapy. Tell them you’re going for stress, if you don’t feel comfortable saying “it’s none of your business”: it’s true enough and a problem everyone can relate to. Again, usual caveats about ignoring the non-useful.

  88. says

    @dianne:

    Nope. I don’t have a PCP. I should get one at some point, but I’m usually of pretty good health (except panic attacks, sciatica, mild aggravated scoliosis, a host of problems due to being pretty severely underweight, and very likely some form of anemia from being a vegetarian) so I only go to a doctor when I need to go to one.

    @Audley:

    *hugs*

  89. says

    @my 132:

    And no. Underweight is not from being vegetarian. I eat like a… person that eats a lot. Underweight is cause that food just goes nowhere. Ridiculously high metabolism FTL.

    @giliell:

    I dunno, there are quite a few Pharyngulites in my immediate area. I just think it’s something I have to do myself.

    @dianne:

    Well, I’ll eventually have to tell them, like at the point where I’m explaining “I no longer go by that name, call me ‘Katherine.’”

  90. Louis says

    Katherine Lorraine,

    Gotcha. Can’t move forward because it’s effectively coming out to a world of stigma, can’t go back because it is a negation of the self.

    I know it’s coming from my place of ignorance, privilege and not being you (i.e. not having the details), but is there any way to do what Dianne said in #131? I.e. go to a therapist (one that supports YOU in your therapeutic process, not bullies you into THEIR precise mould) and keep your gender dysphoria and/or transition secret until you absolutely have to come out (for obvious reasons).

    BTW If I inadvertently fuck up regarding trans/gender issues, please forgive me a little bit. Only a little bit! I am deeply crap at this stuff and not sure precisely how to phrase things. And after you’ve forgiven me a tiny bit, you can bollock me/ignore me as appropriate! ;-)

    Louis

  91. says

    @blf:

    It doesn’t. But I don’t want to run into a situation where people reading my book think Ona is a 20-year old woman. She’s older than almost all of the other characters in the story (the Captain of the Guard is the oldest character at 60-ish.) She’s hyper-smart, and has spent the last 45 years of her life honing her knowledge of pathology to the point where she’s the best coroner in the entire kingdom.

  92. says

    Katherine

    I dunno, there are quite a few Pharyngulites in my immediate area. I just think it’s something I have to do myself.

    Why?
    Don’t listen to the monkey-brain, it’s lying.
    You’re not weak, dumb, stupid, a failure or whatever it tells you for needing a hand with this.

  93. blf says

    …and has spent the last 45 years of her life honing her knowledge…

    Assuming that point is made, isn’t the concern solved? A 20yo won’t have 40+ years experience. And a “hyper-smart” experienced whatever probably has many opportunities to allude to the fact, and/or for the fact to be alluded-to.

  94. trinioler says

    Katherine, suggestion:

    Keep the vague language, and have a minor or throwaway dislikeable character comment negatively on her age.

    When your main protagonists see no issue with it, and its people the readers codify as {antagonist} or {bad person}, then it serves to avoid ageism.

    This is part of show don’t tell.

    I used this in DMing a bit actually. I’d have old people shuffle and move slowly and cautiously like their bones were brittle, or I’d have attractive characters get hit on by hilariously inappropriate npcs, like a gnome with a fetish for tall girls hitting on an elf…

  95. trinioler says

    On that note, I’m working on a tabletop rpg where you play as cephalopods!

    I’ll send a review copy to PZ when its closer to done. :)

    Features:
    -3d combat
    -cephalopod society, religion, science, and magic, based around and on their underwater perspective, like there being whale mages, and sharks being regarded as equivalent to demons.
    -Build your own cephalopod, using points to purchase features

    Still working out the core mechanic, if it’ll be sheet-based, deck-based(ala Dominion), or what.

  96. AshPlant says

    how am I being a donkey?

    Well, what characteristics are traditionally associated with donkeys? Hint: they rhyme with ‘flobstinacy’ and ‘scubbornness’.

  97. says

    @trinioler:

    I think the tallis couple is my favorite two characters in the story. They’re largely background, but they’re a great couple. Both dedicated to their work, but also to each other.

    Ona (the coroner) is a somewhat dainty, feminine woman – who takes apart dead bodies for a living. She wears dresses, pretties up her hair, wears perfume, and enjoys things like parties and festivals.

    Shaura (the inventor) is aloof, technically minded and somewhat more masculine. She wears trousers and tunics, is highly introverted, and doesn’t care much that she ends up with grease spots and soot from her experiments.

    They’re a very sweet couple, and both play off each other’s neuroses to make sure they’ve got the most comfortable living situation. Ona will spend time alone with Shaura, and Shaura will reluctantly take her wife to a party when she gets invited.

  98. blf says

    Still working out the core mechanic, if it’ll be sheet-based, deck-based(ala Dominion), or what.

    I read that as duck-based. Like in the ex-dinosaurs that go quack. Quack for this, a quack-quack for that, and if you can get all the players to walk in a circle quacking, a bonus tentacle or something…

  99. opposablethumbs says

    Katherine, damn. Seconding Giliell, if there’s anyone geographically close enough who you’d feel comfortable to have supporting you, you shouldn’t feel you have to go it alone. I do hope there is someone, if you want that. I’m talking from privilege here too, but I imagine it would be way, way beyond daunting to consider setting out to do all this – you’ll be doing all the hard work, why not have someone walk along with you for a bit, if you can. {{{also hugs}}} if you want ‘em.

    And yay for the story progress. As blf said, I’d go for having the character’s age implied by the extent of their experience, maybe a passing reference to how long it’s been since their studies/first job/whatever would make an appropriate milestone? And/or implied by other characters’ reactions to them.

  100. thunk, circumzenithal arc says

    Ouch Kat. Hugses etc… hope you find a way to get through these panic attacks. Good luck with editing the story, too.

  101. trinioler says

    Hey there’s a perfect comment. “I haven’t been to a party like this since I entered medical college… ” “When was that?” “Before you were born.” Or something like that.

  102. Nutmeg says

    an annoyingly perfect neighbour that makes your own flaws stand out in contrast

    Fuck, I wish this was true. Don’t get me started on how much the Conservatives hate science and the environment. And how they want to repeat all the mistakes the US has made, because apparently we can’t learn from our neighbours. And how we’re stuck with Stephen Harper for at least 3 more years.

  103. says

    So… my wife is upstairs packing all her clothing. We’re assuming that nothing is going to go wrong in the next 48 hours and she’ll be on her way to her new job either tomorrow or Saturday. I’m trying to keep my anxiety in check until my wife is safely out of the house and on her way, and then I’m going into full-on panic mode.

    In the meanwhile, it was kind of funny when I dragged the suitcases out of our storage room. My wife looked at the luggage and said “Wow, I forgot how BIG it all is!” I did good work shopping for luggage, let me tell you. In the meanwhile, I’m digging up extra phone chargers and an ethernet cable in case my wife needs to plug her computer in at the hotel.

    In semi-happy news, I am the proud owner of my wife’s Samsung Galaxy tablet, since she’s not going to take the laptop AND the tablet AND the Kindle with her. It is funny, she was complaining about how slow it is, and it turns out she was running Android 3.0 because she’s NEVER updated the damned thing. She somehow missed 3.1, 3.2, and 4.0.

  104. carlie says

    Hey there’s a perfect comment. “I haven’t been to a party like this since I entered medical college… ” “When was that?” “Before you were born.” Or something like that.

    It hit me yesterday that there was no email when I was in college.

    (get offa my lawn)

  105. blf says

    Vagina by Naomi Wolf covered up by Apple iTunes:

    Apple’s iTunes store has starred out part of the title of Wolf’s new book Vagina, calling it instead V****a, and replacing the word throughout the book’s description. So, according to Apple, Wolf’s book is “an astonishing new work that radically changes how we think about, talk about and understand the v****a”. The author, writes Apple, “looks back in history and show[s] us how the v****a was considered sacred for centuries until it began to be cast as a threat”, and asks why “even now in an increasingly sexualised world, it is thought of as slightly shameful”.

    Amazon and Waterstones’ online stores both allow the word to be seen in full. And unfortunately for Apple, a picture of Wolf’s book jacket clearly displays the title on iTunes just centimetres to the left of the starred-out version.

    Ok all you silly sluts in the hoarde, it’s now official. You have a v****a. I assume that means the even more ridiculous other part is now a p***s. Typical feminazi repression. They get an extra *!

  106. carlie says

    The author, writes Apple, “looks back in history and show[s] us how the v****a was considered sacred for centuries until it began to be cast as a threat”, and asks why “even now in an increasingly sexualised world, it is thought of as slightly shameful”.

    Irony, meet thyself.

  107. blf says

    It hit me yesterday that there was no email when I was in college.

    I suspect something more like “I didn’t have access to(or know about) e-mail when I was in college”? E-mail has been around since c.1965, networked e-mail a bit later, but not commonly available until quite some time later. For instance, I was using e-mail in the late 1970′s, but it wasn’t until the 1990′s that I could routinely assume someone on the other side of the disc also had e-mail. (Actually, I presume the “routinely” is a “First World” bias…)

  108. Matt Penfold says

    It hit me yesterday that there was no email when I was in college.

    We had email after a fashion, but it was only internal and then only accesible when logged onto the mainframe. So it never got used much. The University did try to start using it as a means of communuting with staff and students, but had to give up as people were not reading their messages. We all coped quite well with old-fashioned pigeon-holes.

  109. carlie says

    We had email after a fashion, but it was only internal and then only accesible when logged onto the mainframe.

    Heh. We had that too, but I mainly only used it for live chat with other people who were “online” at the same time. I forgot you could do stored messages with it as well.

  110. FossilFishy (Νεοπτόλεμος's spellchecker) says

    Katherine, one of the things that made finding a therapist easier for me was the realisation that what I had to do was learn how to find a therapist. I’d never done that before of course, and like anything complex and new it takes practice to get it right. It made that first move into one small step rather than a leap into a full-on exploration of what all that was wrong with my brain and behaviour. It also kept me in control of the situation because I was there to simply learn about what this particular therapist’s methods were and to get a sense of them as a person.

  111. Matt Penfold says

    We didn’t have personal computers when I was in college.

    We did, but the IBM PC had only recently come on the market. Commodore PETs were used a fair bit and other machines (I forget what they were) that used CP/M as an OS.

  112. blf says

    I forgot you could do stored messages with it as well.

    Ok, makes more sense now. Same here (late 1970′s), albeit there was an ARPAnet IMP and hence on the by-then intercontinental (wow!) “internet”. However, it was hard to get an account on the machine connected to the IMP, so most e-mail was either local-Host-only, or only between Hosts using the same proprietary networking kit. Except for this weird little system over in High Energy Physics running something called “Unix” with something called “UUCP” and something called a “modem”…

  113. chigau (違わない) says

    Oh yeah.
    Commodore PETs, etal.
    But ‘people’ didn’t own them, schools and businesses did.

  114. says

    Stop encouraging Erikthebassist! First off… bassist! Secondly, next thing you know he’s an example of someone who changed their mind because of the take-no-bullshit attitude around here, and then DEEEEEP RIFTS! Thirdly, once DEEEEEP RIFTS! are in play Imma have to stick my peepee in it, and nobody wants that.

  115. Matt Penfold says

    I had this little darlin’ as my college computer; my dad was a systems analyst and they finally upgraded him to a newer model, so I got his old one. TWO disk drives, baby. And a handle.

    And free surgury to repair the hernia from lugging it around ?

  116. Beatrice says

    I have my issues with Feministe, but I’ve read this there and wouldn’t mind it becoming a thing (link):

    PrettyAmiable 9.13.2012 at 7:20 am | Permalink | Reply

    [Caperton] 1. There has to be some kind of Godwinesque law about privileged white guys invoking the name of Martin Luther King, Jr., to convince marginalized people to behave themselves.

    We can call it Fincke’s law! Let’s make this a thing.

  117. says

    You know what pisses me off about people like Fuckee invoking the whole “Martin Luther King, Jr. was civil and peaceful, and look how far it got him” thing?

    IT GOT MLK FUCKING KILLED!

  118. UnknownEric says

    Stop encouraging Erikthebassist! First off… bassist!

    Hey, I’m a bassist named Eric (spelled correctly, however) too.

    Thirdly, once DEEEEEP RIFTS! are in play Imma have to stick my peepee in it, and nobody wants that.

    Don’t worry, I have some mashed potatoes. Yep, it’s that kinda party!

  119. Matt Penfold says

    I would hardly call MLK civil. Non-violent certainly, but not civil. The whole point of his political actions was not to be civil.

    There is more to civility than not saying fuck and not hitting people.

  120. says

    First off… bassist!

    Is this a bad moment to admit that I… umm…

    (Small voice…)

    May in fact own a bass. Which I may, in fact, have even played on occasion.

    Listen. I was young. Everyone was experimenting.

    (Also, I wanted to thicken up some mixes, and c’mon. Four strings? How hard can this be?)

    Way more seriously: Erik, just wow.

  121. UnknownEric says

    c’mon. Four strings? How hard can this be?

    That was my reasoning. I desperately wanted to be in a band and I figured, hey, I can do that. And I could! I taught myself the basics in about a week.

    Only problem is, 19 years later, I still haven’t improved since that first week. ;)

  122. says

    Only problem is, 19 years later, I still haven’t improved since that first week. ;)

    Sounds kinda like how I play it.

    Tell ya honestly, I’ve no hatred whatsoever for basses. Mingus especially is easily one of my musical heroes.

    … but despite having (I think) pretty good harmonic sense (used to be able to improvise vocal harmonies around a melody… probably still could), my trouble with the bass is: frequencies that low don’t seem exactly to jump up and announce ‘emselves to my brain as ‘I’m a C#!’…

    … no, those denizens of the basement registers, they more murmur something like ‘I may be somewhere below F… but I’m not sure I really want to let on as I’m kinda shy about it…’ Which is far less helpful.

    Probably it’s partly a matter of training, and I haven’t put in the time at those frequencies. But yeah, just from that: respect for anyone who can actually do that well.

  123. consciousness razor says

    You have a v****a. I assume that means the even more ridiculous other part is now a p***s. Typical feminazi repression. They get an extra *!

    It’s all part of G*d’s plan.

  124. says

    We can call it Fincke’s law! Let’s make this a thing.

    I support that.

    ***

    Some of our commenters must be psychic: Read Camels With Hammers At Patheos, Starting Today

    Ha!

    (And there’s John Morales, being an ass to Fincke for leaving. After Fincke talked about how a primary motivation for the move is the fact that he’s a fucking poor adjunct going ever deeper into debt. Stay classy, John.)

  125. PatrickG says

    @ carlie:

    I’ve also read some interesting things about rubber particulates being correlated with asthma rates – all those tires on the road are throwing off bits of rubber into the air all the time. But I have no idea how one would separate the effects of tire detritus and exhaust fumes when the correlation is just higher asthma rates next to highways.

    There’s been a bunch of occupational research on latex/rubber allergic events. This is a pretty decent survey of occupational hazards, pathopsychology, and mitigation possibilities. Limited to occupational settings, however (e.g. hospital workers, tire plant workers, etc).

    Re: tires as a source of ambient pollution — I found this useful. People doing high-volume particulate matter sampling, with subsequent analysis of the sample constituents. It appears that for a while, people were assuming some portion of the rather nondescript black “ash” in these samples was precisely that (fly ash from incinerators or manufacturing); however, a closer look revealed it was fine particulate rubber, of just that size to allow maximal penetration into deep lung tissue.

    So. Given that we have a body of toxicological research on latex and asthma, all we need is a robust sampling data set combined with a population census for asthma, with all movement, medical histories, and sources of pollution identified. Have it by tomorrow, pls. ;)

  126. chigau (違わない) says

    I finally installed the killfile.
    It makes things unsightly and I’m scared to use it.
    I think I’ll have another cup of tea.

  127. says

    Audley:

    Uh, Dr King didn’t behave himself. Are these people confusing nonviolence with acceptance?

    Once the right wing realized that demonizing King wasn’t going to work anymore, they distorted the historical record around him quite a bit to make him look much less radical and confrontational than he actually was, and a lot of white Americans buy into those distortions. I doubt many have ever heard of “Letter from Birmingham Jail,” let alone read it.

    UnknownEric: Is it when the bassist is drooling equally out of both sides of hir mouth that you can tell that the stage is level, or is that the drummer?

    /I keed, I keed

  128. Rey Fox says

    Would it be better to explicitly say “Ona was a 44-year old tallis woman?” Or leave it up to the following sentence, “Age had treated her well, with a still youthful appearance despite a few streaks of grey hair through her long, black hair” to explain how old she is?

    The latter. It’s the “show, don’t tell” dictum, and I think it’s good to have flexibility of this sort of thing*, to leave a little to the imagination of the reader. More important than the number is what the accumulated life experience of the character has imparted to zir personality/outlook/demeanor.

    * Particularly in a fantasy setting where the different races may have different lifespans from humans.

  129. UnknownEric says

    UnknownEric: Is it when the bassist is drooling equally out of both sides of hir mouth that you can tell that the stage is level, or is that the drummer?

    Ha! I was usually too busy trying to jump around and look cool than actually play well, so my drool was everywhere. :)

  130. chigau (違わない) says

    So engaging the killfile makes conversations impossible to follow.
    Unless you show one comment at a time.
    Is this really worth it?

  131. Stevarious says

    So I had this big long rant that I was going to post in response to Dan’s comment, and it got portcullissed, and I’m not sure if the, ah, subtext of my comments will translate to their comment structure.

    But I had this excerpt that was just… just a work of art, and I have to share it somewhere.

    In a fairly civil article entitled “The Necessity of Domestic Violence”, where no one was called any of those mean old abusive names except the author himself (well, right up to the very end, where he drops the act and shows his true colors), we have: “Women should be terrorized by their men; it’s the only thing that makes them behave better than chimps.” It’s a real thing that real people – real atheists – believe. Nothing hypothetical about it, excepting that they have not dropped by Dan’s blog yet.

    (I say ‘yet’ because an overriding commitment to ‘civility’ to this degree WILL attract this sort of commentariat. As we can see, he’s already attracted the ‘Thank you for your commitment to civility, I’m a perfectly nice guy who gets called all kinds of mean names everywhere I go for no good reason because I believe something unpopular!!1!’ sort of lying MRA special, unique person.)

  132. Beatrice says

    chigau,

    I use killfile, but it gets worthless when everyone but me doesn’t ignore the troll. It’s mostly useful when a troll posts one or two barely acknowledged comments that I then don’t bother to unkill.