Comments

  1. chigau (meh) says

    Monday is rarely happy, no matter when it happens.
    Happy day, anyway, Oggie.

  2. Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought says

    rq,

    he,he

    Anyone been to Budapest recently, and has a cake shop or restaurant to recommend?

  3. Nutmeg says

    Beatrice: My friend was there in the spring, and she really liked Bors GasztroBár.

  4. Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought says

    Thanks, Nutmeg! Name and address written down for a possible brunch/lunch/whatever… We’re going only for three days and are rather restricted since it’s an organized trip.
    Might just ditch the guide and proceed on our own, though. :)

  5. David Marjanović says

    No hope of catching up. *pouncehugs in random directions*

    USAliens and permanent resident aliens, donate to the campaign against Mitch McConnell within the next 12 hours and have your donation triple-matched by the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee. “McConnell is the most unpopular senator in the country, and right now he’s tied (45-45) with Alison Lundergan Grimes. With Nate Silver projecting that control of the entire Senate could hinge on whether we can defeat McConnell, it’s absolutely necessary that we answer President Clinton’s call to action.”

    I’m reading this as “I won’t judge you, child, but God will [muahaha!]

    In other words, he has a better moral compass than his own god.

    Frankly, that doesn’t surprise me.

  6. yazikus says

    Anyone been to Budapest recently, and has a cake shop or restaurant to recommend?

    Beatrice, is this the trip that maybe wasn’t working out?

    Finally some cooler weather. A local paper ran a dreadful story yesterday about an american farmer going to Mozambique to farm.

    The bits that really bugged me were the “I’ve gone west. For me it’s the chance to go out and pioneer,” he said. and “That country has a lot better attitude than a lot of African countries,” Rogers said. “They haven’t seen a lot of dependence on foreign handouts. They went through a revolution and then with the new government found their own people treated them worse. They accept foreigners and work together, all have different skills, which is perfect for working together” and Unlike the many regulations and restrictions on American farmers, Mozambique has virtually no restraints on what can be done. “It’s truly a free market,” Rogers said.and “God is pushing me to do this”.

    Blegh.

  7. David Marjanović says

    Esteleth, I just read your post. I think the thing about M. Curie being the first or only woman scientist that comes to people’s minds is The Smurfette Principle. There’s one scientist with a long beard (Darwin), one scientist with wild hair (Einstein), and one scientist with lady bits (Curie – more famous than her husband).

  8. Esteleth, statistically significant to p ≤ 0.001 says

    So the red velvet cupcakes were a hit – but the attendance was low. Because we frequently get 20+ people, I made a double (i.e. two-pan) batch. Attendance today was nine.

    Um, cupcakes anyone?


    David, I have to admit that when I saw you write “M. Curie,” I was all confused because my essay wasn’t about Pierre, but Marie..

    I studied French for 5 years, you see.

  9. says

    I am feeling really cranky today. Bah.
    ****

    I enjoyed the beschamel talk :)
    ****

    This is potentially a horrible increase in religious privilege:

    http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2013/07/31/2388461/federal-judge-catholic-church-has-a-constitutional-right-not-to-compensate-victims-of-sex-abuse/

    Excerpt:

    ” A federal judge in Wisconsin handed down an opinion yesterday granting the Catholic Church — and indeed, potentially all religious institutions — such sweeping immunity from federal bankruptcy law that it is not clear that it would permit any plaintiff to successfully sue any church in any court. While the ostensible issue in this case is whether over $50 million in church funds are shielded from a bankruptcy proceeding triggered largely by a flood of clerical sex abuse claims against the Archdiocese of Milwaukee, Judge Rudolph Randa reads the church’s constitutional and legal right to religious liberty so broadly as to render religious institutions immune from much of the law.”

  10. rq says

    Who needs some cute? I’ve got all of it right here – no, no Horses, just kittenkittenkitten.

    Also, watch an inmate escape. Yup, apparently it’s that easy…

    +++

    Some days, when I make the perfect cake, I really feel like I’ve missed my calling.
    Then again, thank goodness all our birthdays are nicely spaced out throughout the year.

  11. yazikus says

    Some days, when I make the perfect cake, I really feel like I’ve missed my calling.

    May I inquire, rq, what kind of cake the perfect cake is?

  12. carlie says

    I’ve been inspired – I’m going to try to make a lemon meringue pie. It may end in tears. And ambulances. And fire trucks. I might be better off with a merengue. ;)

    On female scientists – I was with three people with Ph.D.s the other day, and Barbara McClintock came up, and none of them had ever even heard of her. It made me sad. :(

  13. Crudely Wrott says

    Re: Lauren Green interviews Reza Aslan.

    Just found this short post over at Slate. Not really news in terms of headlines, more like another nugget that helps flesh out an ongoing story. Money quote:

    “Well, look, I watch Fox News, anyone who watches Fox News knows that they have an inherent anti-Muslim bias in their reporting and has been for quite some time,” Aslan told MSNBC’s Alex Wagner. “It’s very successful for them. I don’t actually blame them for it. They’re a commercial enterprise. They know how to sell a product and, frankly, fear sells a product. I do want to say one quick thing though. Look, I feel really bad for Lauren Green. You know this, Alex, anybody on your show knows this that Lauren was sitting there being yelled at by some producer in her ear.”

    Funny how non-religious, non-doctrinal personalities don’t get really, really mad when faced with defenders of religion and doctrine nearly as often as the believers do. Must be some kind of sign.

    My take is that with a name like Aslan I’m surprised he didn’t just eat poor Lauren right up in two bites!

    Linky: http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slatest/2013/07/31/reza_aslan_lauren_green_zealot_author_says_he_feels_really_bad_for_fox_news.html

  14. Crudely Wrott says

    Tony, I’m sorry your cross today. Your post, though, contains a solution!
    Read more about beschamel and less about religious privilege. That ought to work. :)

    Could the judge by a Catholic? Is there a priest putting the squeeze on the judge?

    Judge Rudolph Randa reads the church’s constitutional and legal right to religious liberty so broadly as to render religious institutions immune from much of the law.”

    Harumph. I always thought that law was at the heart of faith. Right up there, just above the love part. Whoa! There’s a study of contrast.

  15. blf says

    It may end in tears. And ambulances. And fire trucks.

    The mildly deranged penguin points out that a proper end to an attempt to make lemon meringue pie involves an emergency teleport back to orbit, a wrap-speed retreat, and precisely two penis-free toasters. Only the later is a problem, they are as rare as virgins and harder to find (unicorns aren’t interested (stupid saber-nosed horses)).

  16. chigau (meh) says

    I made a salad with tomatoes, green onions, parsley and basil. All from the garden.
    The oil and vinegar were from the cupboard.

  17. Crudely Wrott says

    bluetnx, Guv Pat really is clueless. Clueless.

    What a shame that Jamie, the surprised recipient of Pat’s latest attempt to soothe rather than represent, wasn’t perspicacious enough (or just pissed off enough) to begin sailing the cookies one by one, Frisbee style, at Pat’s retreating back.

    Two years I’ve lived in this state. Were it not for family being here it’d been more like two weeks!

  18. cicely (Still hating it, but what can you do?) says

    chigau: Apart from a kick-ass pot of chicken soup that my best friend from college once made, my experience has entirely (to the best of my knowledge) been of canned soups.

    But I just can’t get excited about some full-grown dude being 15% more civil than his horrible predecessor, no matter how much of his own luggage he carries.

    And the New Pope is officially just exactlyas infallible as the Old Pope! Something to munch on.

    “Happy Monday”? Ain’t no such animal.


    *pouncehugging* randomly in David’s direction.
    :D

    kittenkittenkittenkittenkitten!
    -

  19. carlie says

    Pie out of oven.

    Custard: tasted good

    Meringue: looks ok

    Structural integrity: highly suspect. Will wait until cooled to poke at. Pic on twitter. :)

  20. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    Oh hai!

    I’m so far behind that I fear for the evolutionary fitness of my offspring. I hope that everyone’s well.

    It’s done.

    Really done.

    De-spidered, pressure washed, keys handed back kinda done. And that means that the Alpine Victoria campus of The Pharyngula Commune is now open! Come on, come all, and mind the crocs, they’re a bit hungry.

    There were tears. They was bloodshed. There was rat poo, and chook poo, and cow pooh. No Winnie the Pooh oddly enough, but I’m sure I’ve got him in a box somewhere. There were mysterious bits of machinery that met with a shrug, and long lost treasures that were met with a happy dance, followed by the stifling thought of: “Where the hell can I put this?”

    The shed has no usable work space left in it. At the end I was considering folding space along its eleventh dimension in order to make it all fit. I apologise in advance, it’s entirely possible that over the next couple of days a mote of dust will land on that pile and initiates its collapse into a world destroying black hole. Spaghettification for everyone!

    My back, arms and legs are sore. I’m not sure that pulling star pickets out of the ground will be the next big fitness craze, but it sure is a whole body workout. Do that in intervals with cleaning the things and jerking the boxes and no muscle will be left un-pulled.

    There was even fire. Cleansing fire at that. The cardboard from the car-port boxes with their delicate frosting of various poos made a quite a nice conflagration. Mind you, Ms. Fishy was quite adamant that this was not an acceptable method of cleaning the house.

    But now it’s all done, and regular life can begin again….once I figure out which box I put it in.

  21. chigau (meh) says

    cicely

    Apart from a kick-ass pot of chicken soup that my best friend from college once made, my experience has entirely (to the best of my knowledge) been of canned soups.

    That makes me sad.

  22. chigau (meh) says

    Yipeee!!! for the FossilFishyFamily Home!!!
    Ms. Fishy maybe mistaken … fire good.

  23. bluentx says

    FossilFishy!

    *Kermit the frog hand waving ‘Yaaay!’*

    Ask and ye shall receive – I was just (last couple of days) askin’ myself: “Did I miss the big, blow-out House Warming BBQ?”

    No, huh?

  24. Crudely Wrott says

    [stops writing bluentx at iteration 42]
    Wow, there is a balance in all things, isn’t there? ;^>

    Conga rats, Fossil Fishy, for finishing a monumental job. Were I in your place I would have saved some stuff to build a, err, monument of the accomplishment.

  25. cicely (Still hating it, but what can you do?) says

    It’s done.
     
    Really done.

    *firework&confetti&champagne*
    Congratulations!
    -

  26. carlie says

    YAY FOSSILFISHY!!!!

    Apart from a kick-ass pot of chicken soup that my best friend from college once made, my experience has entirely (to the best of my knowledge) been of canned soups.

    That was me until a couple of years ago. I’m not sure what got me into making soups – I think it was a recipe I saw in one of those women’s magazines at the doctor’s office waiting room. It was so simple, and I didn’t realize a soup could be so simple, and I tried it and it was good*. Then I found Soupsong and tried a few, and they were good (especially the thanskgiving leftover soup). Somewhere along the way pattern recognition kicked in and I figured out that if you have a)stock (which I always use from bouillon because it’s easier) and b)caramelized onions, just about anything else can be thrown in and it will taste ok.

    *I think the ingredients were: bouillon, a can of small white beans, one egg (beaten and whisked in slowly), and onion.

  27. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    Thanks folks. The sad thing is that we had 28 days to do this and we still ended up scrambling around in the dark on the last day. You’d think I’d have learned something in the eleven or so times I’ve done this before…

    I will pass on the one big lesson I learned from all t his:

    Living in a big, rambling farm house may seem like a beautiful, romantic idea, but it has a hidden cost. one that shows up only when it comes time to move. Old houses are harder to clean and even if your family has only three people you’re going to end up using all the bedrooms (six in this case) to the point where you *will* have to clean them. When I walked in the back door with the petrol can and matches I was only partly kidding.

    The housewarming has yet to happen. The Small Fry did have her sixth birthday last Sunday but the consensus was that it didn’t count as a housewarming even though the attendees for both will be much the same. It’s a question of the nature of the presents.

  28. Crudely Wrott says

    Re: #537

    Sometimes I just want to turn and walk away; far away.
    Those times have been happening more frequently during this so disappointing administration.

    It has become apparent to me that instead of experience informing those in offices of leadership how to, how shall I say, actually lead the citizenry, exactly the opposite has happened. Those in said offices, bearing the full faith and trust of the electorate (if only for the duration of the campaign and the swearings in) have only learned how to follow themselves.

    ‘Round and ’round they go
    And where they stop
    We now sadly know.

    We should have already known but there is this hope that encourages belief. Hollow hope. Tragic hope.

    Leadership is no longer a burden, an obligation of the gravest import. It has become a circle jerk, a fast track to ever more profitable schmoozing and glad handing for the profit of the few. The many? Fuck ‘em. Feed ‘em beans.

    Now I’m nearly as cranky as Tony. Please! more talk about soups! cleaning old houses! loving and honoring one another!

  29. David Marjanović says

    *precisely aimed pouncehug in cicely’s direction*

    And the New Pope is officially just exactlyas infallible as the Old Pope! Something to munch on.

    Neither of them has so far performed an ex cathedra statement, however. Infallibility is used extremely sparingly, because otherwise its absurdity would be way too obvious. It’s bad enough as it is! :-)

    Apart from a kick-ass pot of chicken soup that my best friend from college once made, my experience has entirely (to the best of my knowledge) been of canned soups.

    Aw. I want to make a few pots of vegetable soups for you now. :-(

  30. Crudely Wrott says

    News flash! More of the True Cross found!

    http://www.nbcnews.com/science/piece-jesus-cross-relics-unearthed-turkey-6C10812170

    The artifacts were unearthed during a dig at Balatlar Church in Turkey’s Sinop Province, and displayed this week by excavation team leader Gülgün Köroğlu. “We have found a holy thing in a chest. It is a piece of a cross,” the Hurriyet Daily News quoted her as saying.

    Never mind that the total mass of relics purported to be parts of the One True Cross span a range as wide as guesses about the number of inhabitable planets for which there is considerably better evidence:

    The 16th-century Protestant theologian John Calvin famously joked that if all the pieces linked to the “true cross” were assembled in one place, “they would make a big shipload.” However, the Catholic Encyclopedia quotes the 19th-century French archaeologist Charles Rohault de Fleury as saying that all of the cataloged relics would amount to less than a third of the wood in a 3- to 4-meter-high (10- to 13-foot-high) cross. Relics linked to Jesus’ cross can be found in many churches, including the Shrine of the True Cross and the Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart in Texas.

    New pictures of the Ark on Ararat in 3 . . . 2 . . . 1 . . .

  31. bluentx says

    With all this talk of food/cooking…
    I’ve recently been experimenting with herb/spice combinations when roasting vegetables (especially mixed root veggies but any veg/flavoring advice is welcome). Any favorites you care to mention?

    And on a more personal anti-theist note dovetailing with food… [Yes, my mind works in mysterious ways,too.] I’ve come to realize that I (little ole me!) may have single-handedly stopped a family tradition!

    My mother frequently told a story that goes like so:

    I supposedly looovvved corn so much as a child (well, that part’s true even to this day) that when asked to say The Blessing before dinner one night the following happened:

    Solemnly bows head.
    Reverently intones: “Corn, corn, corn……….. Amen”
    ( I was four or five years old. What did they expect – Billy Graham?)

    Thing is, I heard that story over and over for years after, but I don’t remember my brother or sisters being asked to ‘say grace’. (Just my dad reciting the same, memorized, uninspired, monotone delivered, say-it-as-fast-as-you-can-to-get-it-over-with script.)
    So maybe that was an attempt to start a tradition that tricycle-rider me nipped in the bud?

    A radical Gnu-Atheist in the making?

  32. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    A radical Gnu-Atheist in the making?

    No, no, it’s more than that, it’s mystical atheist powers! Obviously Dawkins rode his fetus-fueled time machine back to your youth to destroy your family’s faith. How else could you explain it?

  33. carlie says

    Success!
    The custard at the middle is a little too soft, but it’s also still warm, so maybe it will firm up overnight. Tastes good, a bit tart, better than oversweet. Egg whites are just right.

    I’ve recently been experimenting with herb/spice combinations when roasting vegetables (especially mixed root veggies but any veg/flavoring advice is welcome). Any favorites you care to mention?

    I wish I knew!

  34. bluentx says

    Sometimes I just want to turn and walk away; far away.
    Those times have been happening more frequently during this so disappointing administration.

    Seconded.

    Leadership is no longer a burden, an obligation of the gravest import. It has become a circle jerk, a fast track to ever more profitable schmoozing and glad handing for the profit of the few.

    Seconded here, too.

    As Mano posted:
    http://freethoughtblogs.com/singham/2013/07/30/the-washington-cesspool/

  35. John Morales says

    Crudely:

    Relics linked to Jesus’ cross can be found in many churches, including the Shrine of the True Cross and the Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart in Texas.

    That just begs for scientific validation.

    (Which need not require destructive testing)

  36. Crudely Wrott says

    carlie said:

    Somewhere along the way pattern recognition kicked in and I figured out that if you have a)stock (which I always use from bouillon because it’s easier) and b)caramelized onions, just about anything else can be thrown in and it will taste ok.

    My father said that he was taught to cook by an old Mexican and by a cookbook of uncertain provenance. He said each recipe in the book started out the same: “You take an onion . . .” Ol’ Pap was a damned good cook. Not fancy. Good. Except cooking bacon. He thought crisp was an abomination. Never could talk, or cook, him out of it.
    [shakes head sadly, knowing it’s too late now.]

    I’ll be caramelizing some tomorrow morning as part of breakfast for grandcubs and I. (suddenly wonders if he should go do the onions now and set aside till morning. just for the fragrance. decides to stay put. the fragrance of the day will be sufficient. tee hee. love to rip of the book.)

  37. Crudely Wrott says

    John said:

    That just begs for scientific validation.

    (Which need not require destructive testing)

    Valid point taken. Now, shall we go collect them so we can begin the examinations?

    Something tells me that would ruin the sanctity of the relics’ repose, which is ever so important to the sanctity of the savior who first sanctified the splinters, and make all the magic go away. Permission to do so would [[almost]] never be granted for fear of interrupting that cycle of self justification. Those who did grant permission would be sent to the corn field. Another no-evidence symptom of mythology taken way too seriously.

  38. says

    FossilFishy, congrats on a job … done. I don’t want to move ever again.

    Soup? I got all the ingredients for this soup this last weekend … just haven’t had the spoons to make it. I admit that I don’t actually measure the spices (probably 1.5-2x what is called for), and the garlic … well, 3-4x.

    Albondigas Soup

    Ingredients:

    * 1 tablespoon cooking oil
    * 1 small yellow onion, chopped
    * 4 jalapeño peppers, seeds and ribs removed, chopped
    * 3 large zucchini, 1/2-inch dice
    * 1 1/2 bunches chopped fresh cilantro
    * 2 1/4 teaspoons dried oregano
    * 2 teaspoon ground cumin
    * 1 quart canned low-sodium chicken broth
    * 2 cups water
    * 1/2 cup jasmine rice
    * 1 1/2 cups drained canned diced tomatoes (one 15-ounce can)
    * 1 3/4 teaspoons salt
    * 3/4 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper
    * 1 pound ground beef (97/3)
    * 1 pound ground turkey/chicken (97/3)
    * 2 cloves heads garlic, minced
    * 1/2 cup dry bread crumbs
    * 1 egg, beaten to mix
    * 1 can sweet corn kernels
    * 2 tablespoon lime juice

    Instructions:

    1. In a large pot, heat the oil over moderately low heat. Add the onion and half the jalapeños and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the zucchini,1 1/2 teaspoons of the dried oregano, and 1/2 teaspoon of the cumin and cook, stirring, until the zucchini starts to soften, about 3 minutes.

    2. Add the broth, water, rice, tomatoes, 1 1/4 teaspoons of the salt, and 1/2 teaspoon of the black pepper; bring to a simmer. Simmer for 15 minutes.

    3. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine the ground beef, garlic, the remaining jalapeño, 1 teaspoon cumin, 3/4 teaspoon dried oregano or 1 tablespoon of the fresh oregano, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, the bread crumbs, and the egg. Shape the mixture into meatballs, about 1 inch in diameter.

    4. Add the meatballs, cilantro and corn to the soup and simmer until the meatballs are just done, about 5 minutes. Stir in the lime juice.

    Yeah, several ingredients are ‘canned’ … And I don’t make my own broth/stock (just never something I learned how to do). But it’s quite good.

  39. chigau (meh) says

    broth recipe
    put stuff in a large pot
    add water to cover stuff
    simmer for a couple of hours
    strain

  40. Crudely Wrott says

    I read Mano’s post last, bluentx, and coupled with the information that is wriggling its way into the light like night crawlers* when in rains, my estimation or that fraction of my generation who just insist on goin’ to the state house or goin’ to Washington to “do great things for the great people of America” has really nose dived and augered in like a 1949 jet fighter test pilot.

    Then I remember that there is a large cohort at large in the nation, the world, too, that aren’t sycophantic, aren’t all taken in by the promises and the seeming mystic machinations of “their” senator, “their” voice in the state house. Hey, White House right on down to local school board and town council, right? Probably more people than I might suspect.

    Here in the Lounge lounge about a sub-cohort who aspire to the goals of equity of rights and responsibilities as does the whole while aspiring to and actually living lives of greater liberty. Free of the same old BS that starts when you are little and told who you must be afraid of. All of us have at some moments in our early years sat slack-jawed as some venerable one told us tales of murder and deceit, shadow lurkers and evil incarnate. Each one of us has shivered wide eyed in bed, afraid that a moment’s inattention would let in the boogie man, the woebegog, the witch or the little talking doll with the mean eyes and the funny accent. The degree to which this sub-cohort has shaken off and evaded the ravages of these petty fears that once loomed ultimately large is much larger than the whole cohort and very much larger than the population at large. I think that’s a good thing. I am proud, and profoundly relieved as well as happier than a frog in wet to be a part. Ya’ll give me confidence; but you had to earn it.

    I ramble. Symptom of so much going on at one time. Good brain exercise even if tiring.

    In sum: There are serious problems afoot. Many threats to equity, respect, cooperation, commerce, barter, shuckin’ and jivin’ and swapping favorite songs are currently here and cannot be ignored. Also threatened is the ability of preachers, politicians and peddlers to bamboozle us as they have for the past several thousand years. (suddenly wonders if someone else had the same thought — several thousand years ago. yipe!)

    On the other hand, church attendance is down and politicians are mired up to their knees in their own excrement. Their is a loud cry going out across the land and it is not directed up to the sky. It is broadcast laterally, equitably to authorities every where. We’re saying, “Prove it. Prove it or take a hike.” We’re just not saying it enough.

    Oh, the peddlers? If their shit sucks we don’t buy it.

    That’s why I think there is hope and that’s why I’ll be cooking breakfast in the morning. I’ll take an onion . . .

    *night crawler: a large (10 to 14 inch) earthworm that makes the world’s best fish bait. Commonly caught by wringing wet children during rainy late spring and early summer nights. You have to pull them up slowly in order to get the whole worm. They have teeth on the outside of their bodies.

  41. Crudely Wrott says

    Well, picking up the cue comes this from BBC. (sorry no link; live radio)

    Uruguay has just legalized the cultivation, sale, possession and use of dat ol’ debil weed! The gummint line is essentially that the “War on Drugs” has been and continues to be a failure.

    [yeah, and the shit’ll cost $750 bucks a quarter by the time it makes NC, you just watch]

  42. Crudely Wrott says

    broth recipe
    put stuff in a large pot
    add water to cover stuff
    simmer for a couple of hours
    strain

    Ha! Just the way the old man cooked! Me too.
    You can’t hurt it by cooking it slowly, until you like it. How else are you to know?

  43. bluentx says

    I just don’t get why so many of the conservatives I talk to (in meatspace it’s a necessity*) seem to accept the idea of :
    – leave government service… go to work for the corp. you were just in charge of overseeing (or vice versa)
    No conflict there!
    or
    – accept checks from lobbyists (right on the House floor no less)…
    No big deal

    When did either of these become ‘okay’ instead of what we always condemned in Banana Republics? A little thing called corruption.

    *In these parts there ain’t too many other kinds and even a day-sleeping vampire like me has to interact with ‘em sometimes.

  44. Crudely Wrott says

    When did either of these become ‘okay’ instead of what we always condemned in Banana Republics? A little thing called corruption.

    Well, it looks good, bluentx. You see, if your party does not express outrage at the least turning of the other party then how can you claim you follow someone who claims that you granted them leadership? If you can’t bite across the aisle how can you bite across the precinct?

    Ending snark to say that this is the gravity well in which we are trapped. Those who profess to represent us in the execution of high duties are all falling into a singularity where all particles repel at ever increasing rates and energies.

    I just hope the bubble bursts sooner than later. The resiliency of the people is not without fatigue.

  45. says

    broth recipe
    put stuff in a large pot
    add water to cover stuff
    simmer for a couple of hours
    strain

    Okay, I put some old shoes in the pot along with the dog’s bone. Spiced with blood from dog bite wound. Set it on simmer. Isn’t smelling all that appealing. Are your sure that this really is a good recipe? [doubtful look]

    That is to say it sounds easy if you’ve done it before or at least seenit done, but really? “Stuff”? What constitutes (acceptable) ‘stuff’? [glare-y eyes] [Hrumph] And “strain”. Ah, run it through a collander? wire mesh splatter shield? cheese-cloth (where does one get such a thing)? Am I supposed to skim off the top scum first?

    chigau instructs kids on riding a bike:
    straddle bike
    sit on seat
    pedal with feet
    steer
    don’t fall down

    signed,
    cranky dontpanic

  46. Crudely Wrott says

    As a metaphor I just thought of, consider:

    Adolescents first let loose.
    A coming out of ingenues and young stalwarts for the first time given free (well, oversight has been tactfully withdrawn but not disabled) time to establish their own relationship and congress. Observe their youthful errors and embarrassments.

    I used to think that as I grew up, so would the rest of the world. That the world didn’t put rest to my idea that the world wouldn’t grow up without a swift kick in the ass.

  47. chigau (meh) says

    That’s how I learned to ride a bike and I still have the scars as evidence ;)
    .
    If you want chicken broth, ‘stuff’ should be chicken.
    Similar for beef or vegetables.
    Strainers are available at most grocery stores.
    but I do use a paint strainer when I make jelly.

  48. John Morales says

    dontpanic, since it’s food that’s being made, the “stuff” refers to food-stuff.

    (What, you eat old shoes?)

  49. cicely (Still hating it, but what can you do?) says

    but I do use a paint strainer when I make jelly.

    …’cause Spam don’t shake like that.
    :)
    -

  50. Crudely Wrott says

    Sometimes a strainer is just a strainer. Sometimes it’s not.

    To decide consider the sizes of what you want and the sizes of what you don’t want.

    Philter don’ care.

  51. chigau (meh) says

    I went to the Spam homepage.
    I’m stunned.
    I think I’ll buy some Spam socks…

  52. bluentx says

    Oooh, Crudely’s link to Twistedsifter is nifty. I may be there a while.

    I got hung up on the crater lakes part for a while. Must remember to visit again when I have more time.

  53. rq says

    I had some kittens in my last post, Tony, and chigau put some out soon after.

    They make socks from Spam? :/

    yazikus – While Tony is mostly right (any cake I fix perfectly is the perfect cake), this time it was as-ordered by Eldest (who is now 6! yay!): a chocolate cake with nuts, and whipped cream and berries in the middle and on top. I experimented with the cake recipe, since I seem to have lost my go-to page of standard relative amounts (it’s actually a banana cake recipe but it has worked for oodles of other kinds of cakes). Would you like the actual recipe? I can try to remember it! (It is delicious, but unfortunately nowhere close to being gluten-free or vegan.)

    dontpanic – I never remove the scum off the top of my broth, unless there’s a lot of it (and this is subject to opinion). I strain through an ordinary macaroni strainer, because it’s nice when the smaller garlic chunks make it through. Also, chigau makes no mention of how long it all has to simmer, but my Standard Time is overnight. Oh, and stuff = [broth flavour of choice], garlic, onion, fresh herbs (if have any – dried will do), peppercorn, 1 carrot, 1 celery (this is its only purpose in celery-life, to make a good broth), [other], salt to taste. Takes a bit of trial and error.

    bluentx
    Spice/herb combinations?
    Ha. One of my favourites is lemon-rosemary-garlic on chicken, with optional honey and mustard.
    I make baked vegetables with large amounts of thyme, marjoram, oregano, rosemary, fennel seed, basil, garlic, mint (I call it ‘Greek’ but it really isn’t).
    One that works nice with pork or beef is sweet paprika, chili, cocoa powder (unsweetened!), tomato paste (paste, not sauce), molasses, onion, juice of one orange, sometimes a touch of vinegar.
    Basically, start with garlic, and work your way out from there (whatever’s closest).

  54. rq says

    And a Major Congrats to FossilFishy for completing the move. But it only counts if all the boxes are unpacked. ;) I’m glad all is well in the FishyAquarium, and belated happy birthday to the Small Fry!
    (We unpacked some more this past weekend, but we’re still not moved in completely. Lack of shelving. *ahem*)

  55. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    Thanks rq

    But it only counts if all the boxes are unpacked.

    Uhmm, about that…If that’s the case I have never fully moved in the last ten years or so. ‘Tis the hazard of being a reader in the book business for so long.

  56. bluentx says

    Thanks,rq, for the ideas!
    I’m a tarragon chicken fan but rosemary is good too!

    I also forgot to say thanks to 1) carlie for the links @ 535 and 2) dontpanic @ 549.

  57. bluentx says

    My parents bought the house I live in in 1971.
    We moved from Louisiana in 1970.
    About five years ago I cleaned out the barn and found boxes and wrapping newspaper (Dad’s bottle collection) from the 1960’s.
    So, rq, you’re saying my parents didn’t fully move in… until after … they were… dead?
    Have I got that right?

  58. bluentx says

    Tooooonnnnyyy!

    Did you say annejones three times over in Thunderdome or somethin’? You seem to have resurrected a zombie!

  59. opposablethumbs says

    CONGRATULATIONS FOSSILFISHY!!!!!!! confettifireworksstreamersfizzydrinkofyourchoice!!!!!

    .
    I tried to make fudge yesterday. It was a dismal and total failure.

    Now what to I do with a small container of something that tastes good (vanilla-caramel-ish-with-a-hint-of-maple) but has the appearance and consistency of dark brown thick (like extra-thick double) cream?

    I suppose it could be the filling in a cake … I’d consider blodging some onto ice-cream, but it’s too sweet for that so needs to go with something tart or at least less sweet. Could put a bit on fresh fruit, but have been told that would be a waste of strawberries.

    Oh well … :-\

    Oh! Maybe I should make pancakes. But only I could persuade others to use it up instead of the One True Pancake Thing (dulce de leche, of course (not for me, though – it’s sugar and lemon all the way for me)).

    The sun is back, for one day only. I have to go outside.

  60. bluentx says

    Now what to I do with a small container of something that tastes good (vanilla-caramel-ish-with-a-hint-of-maple) but has the appearance and consistency of dark brown thick (like extra-thick double) cream?

    Pretend you’re a kid again and ‘clean the bowl’?

  61. bluentx says

    Yes.

    You just don’t want to rethink that ‘moving philosophy’. I see how you are!

  62. rq says

    opposablethumbs
    Too bad about the fudge, but maybe, instead of ice cream, you can try a sorbet of some kind? They’re usually nice and tart, and lemon might go well with your creation.
    Pancakes is also a solution, or, better yet – waffles!
    Also, enjoy the sun, while it lasts. ;)

  63. rq says

    bluentx
    My moving philosophy is cared in erm uhh on the side of that moving box over there, and I’m not moving it or emptying it unless I absolutely have to. Because when they’ve all been emptied, I no longer have the excuse of ‘but we just moved in!’, which excuses everything from dirty dishes to unswept floors to the unrenovated bathroom. ;)

  64. bluentx says

    Things that make you go ‘hmmmm’…

    http://www.thedailymeal.com/cutlery-can-change-flavors-study-says

    http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/jurisprudence/2013/07/obama_needs_to_fix_the_crack_cocaine_sentencing_gap.html

    In 2010, recognizing the racial bias reflected in these drug laws and the profound impact they had on African-American offenders and communities, Congress passed the Fair Sentencing Act to significantly reduce the penalties for crack cocaine offenses……
    …..Congress, however, did not make the new law retroactive. So it does not formally apply to those convicted and sentenced before the date it was signed into law, although, somewhat ironically, the U.S. Sentencing Commission—the federal agency responsible for developing fair sentencing guidelines—was permitted to make its guidelines retroactive in a way that could help some of the more serious crack offenders serving the longest sentencing terms under the old law.

    *facepalm*

    http://www.news9.com/story/22979171/oklahoma-mom-charged-for-using-gasoline-to-treat-daughters-lice

    There are not enough facepalms to cover this one!
    [Side note: Oklahoma’s Own— I wouldn’t brag.]

  65. rq says

    bluentx
    I recently saw a similar study about how the colour of the container changes our perception of the taste of the food inside… Now cutlery is important, too!
    So all that time when my dad was telling me it’ll taste the same no matter which plate I use – or which fork – it was lies. Lies!

  66. carlie says

    My father said that he was taught to cook by an old Mexican and by a cookbook of uncertain provenance. He said each recipe in the book started out the same: “You take an onion . . .”

    Now that’s my kind of cooking. :) I never even ate onions until after I was on my own, though – I don’t think my mom has ever used an onion in her life.

    Need rq’s master cake recipe!

    I recently saw a similar study about how the colour of the container changes our perception of the taste of the food inside… Now cutlery is important, too!

    Read Mindless Eating, and freak out about everything involved with food presentation forever.

  67. rq says

    carlie
    Or, alternatively, convince the kids to eat anything and everything on their plates… ;)

    Mmkay, RQ’s Master Cake:
    * Working from memory, so hopefully this is correct (I can’t vouch for the topping; I’m pretty sure I use different amounts of everything each time, plus it’s optional, so…):

    2 eggs
    1/2 c. butter (melted/room temp.)
    3/4 c. sugar (pref. brown)
    [1 tsp. vanilla extract]

    2 c. flour
    1 tsp. baking powder
    1.5 tsp. baking soda
    1/2 tsp. salt

    1 1/2 c. [stuff]

    [nuts]
    [fresh/dried fruits and berries]

    Topping:
    fresh fruit/berries
    1/4 c. butter
    1/2 c. flour
    1/2 c. oats
    1/2 c. sugar (brown)
    cinnamon
    nutmeg
    cloves
    dried ginger

    – Cream together butter + sugar
    – Add eggs (and vanilla flavouring, if desired)
    – Add [stuff]
    – Mix together dry ingredients
    – Stir dry ingredients into wet mix
    – Bake at about 350 up to an hour

    Notes:
    In place of vanilla extract, coffee liqueur, whiskey, mint cream, etc. may be used;
    [stuff] = originally bananas, but I replace with sour cream + [other berries / chocolate], or sour cream and molasses if making spice cake (which requires extra spices in the dry ingredients);
    Any spices can be added to dry ingredients for taste, also lemon zest;
    Nuts and dried/fresh fruit are optional, but delicious; I’ve had great success with raspberries;
    For topping, sprinkle/place fresh fruits, then mix all ingredients and sprinkle over top.

    Baking time varies, yesterday’s variant (available on request) took 45 minutes flat, but I’ve baked up to an hour and a half (the more fresh fruit/liquids inside, the slightly longer the middle takes to rise).
    Something like that!

  68. carlie says

    Thanks, rq! :)

    I’m also thinking about trying “lightning cake”, which I got from “Ask A Glutton” at The Hairpin:

    Lightning cake (which, if you wanna fancy it up, you can call Blintz Kutchen), is as easy, or easier, even, than any mix, and a million times more delicious. All you need to do is turn the oven on, grease up whatever pan you have handy, and mix together one stick of softened butter, one egg, one cup of milk, two cups of flour, and four teaspoons of baking powder. If you have any vanilla lying around, put some in there. If you have some old lemons softening in the back of the fridge, grate off their zest and add that. If you think it’s too early in the morning to eat cake, sprinkle some brown sugar and nuts across the top and call it coffee cake. Then pop in in the oven, and about twenty minutes later, like magic, you will have an essentially perfect cake that’s great with cut-up fruit, or jam, or ice cream, or just plain with a glass of milk, out of your hands in front of the fridge like some kind of animal, which is the way I like to do things.

  69. rq says

    carlie
    Bookmarking that for next time last-minute guests decide to make an appearance.

  70. blf says

    [C]umin flavored cheese exists.
    It’s wonderful.

    Yep. I’m trying to keep some hidden from the mildly deranged penguin right now: Sealed in a vacuum flask, surrounded by a slush of peas and diesel fuel in a concrete-lined drum, buried under a field of horses, in a nuclear fallout shelter stuffed full of celery. On Mars. Several hundred years ago. With a slightly modified value of π, and an armed troop of Atlantean T. rex calvary.

  71. yazikus says

    Now that’s my kind of cooking. :) I never even ate onions until after I was on my own, though – I don’t think my mom has ever used an onion in her life.

    Carlie, I can’t imagine cooking without onions! I think I use at least one onion every day. At least.

    Rq, thanks for the recipe, it sounds delicious! My hat is off to all the excellent bakers round these parts.

  72. blf says

    New York woman visited by police after researching pressure cookers online:

    Michele Catalano, who lives in Long Island, New York, said her web searches for pressure cookers, her husband’s hunt for backpacks, and her “news junkie” son’s craving for information on the Boston bombings had combined somewhere in the internet ether to create a “perfect storm of terrorism profiling”.

    … Catalano said, the police were “peppering my husband with questions”.

    “Where is he from? Where are his parents from? They asked about me, where was I, where do I work, where do my parents live. Do you have any bombs, they asked.”

    It was at this point that the conversation took a delightfully culinary turn, with quinoa making an unlikely appearance in the FBI’s inquiries:

    Do you own a pressure cooker? My husband said no, but we have a rice cooker. Can you make a bomb with that? My husband said no, my wife uses it to make quinoa. What the hell is quinoa, they asked.

    “Do you have any bombs?”
    “Not any more. The last one was used to free the previous idiot’s penis from the toaster.”

  73. blf says

    The Grauniad is reporting Silvio Berlusconi’s prison sentence confirmed…:

    BREAKING: The verdict is in. The Italian Supreme Court has upheld Silvio Berlusconi’s one year* prison sentence for tax fraud in the Mediaset case. It has also ordered a review on the ban on public office that was handed down.

    *originally four years, but reduced to 1 year under an amnesty

  74. says

    Reasons I hate this shithole of a country #1,238:
    If you’re on unemployment and having trouble paying your mortgage, there’s a special program to help you out. If you’re on unemployment and having trouble paying your rent, fuck you. Also the minor fact that I’ve just had a letter saying I won’t be receiving unemployment insurance anymore anyway, unless I qualify for a particular program; to find out whether I do or not, I have to wait an hour and a half on hold while a recorded voice tells me about the options available to mortgage holders.

  75. blf says

    My cheese knowledge is minimal

    The mildly deranged penguin gasped so hard when she saw this that the wedge of cheese she was eating was sucked in whole and flew out of one of her ears, embedding itself in the wall. Her Penguinistaness didn’t seem to notice, but did fall over in a faint, crawled to the corner, and is now crying.

    The wedge of cheese made a spirited run for it, but was tackled by the extremely angry mouse, who then subdued it with threats of peas and is now munching away quite happily. The cheese doesn’t seem so happy, screaming and trying to invoke horses.

  76. Esteleth, statistically significant to p ≤ 0.001 says

    Things I learned this morning:

    (1) red food coloring, if consumed in sufficient quantity, exits largely undigested. WHEE.
    (2) habanero and jalapeño peppers are fucking delicious, but somewhat uncomfortable on exit.
    (3) The combination of these two facts is terrifying.

  77. Esteleth, statistically significant to p ≤ 0.001 says

    Hi Tony!

    *douses Tony in water, transforming the Flaming Queer Shoop to a Damp Queer Shoop*

  78. blf says

    douses Tony in water, transforming the Flaming Queer Shoop to a Damp Queer Shoop

    I suspect it (the water, not the Queer Shoop) flashed into steam, so Tony is now Teh Superhot Queer Steeeeeeam.

  79. opposablethumbs says

    Thank you for the disastrous-not-fudge rescue ideas. And I’m copypasting some of those cake recipes (though I’m a pretty rubbish baker, really; I’ll get inspired, but then just do another basic cake in the end. Never mind, as long as it’s edible!). I have been informed that pancakes can ONLY be eaten with dulce de leche, so I’m going to use the not-fudge as filling in a cake this weekend because it’s DaughterSpawn’s birthday! And she’s coming home for a visit with her boyfriend (after celebrating with pals the night before) so it’s birthday cake time.
    .
    I don’t know how to cook without onion, carlie. My idea is that if in doubt, start by frying some onion (and I’m often in doubt) (and if I’m not in doubt it’s usually only because I know I’m supposed to start with onion) (with the possible exception of cake). If I remember rightly, you said your family didn’t use herbs and spices either, so you’ve essentially completely revised the whole cooking idea since then.
    .
    I wish I could do something to help, Dalillama :-((( I hate it that you have to deal with this – and you’re absolutely right, how come there’s extra support for mortgages but not for rent? I suppose they just think having a lot of foreclosures would look bad, and would ultimately be bad for the banks, while rent problems don’t show up on their economic radar.

  80. says


    opposablethumbs

    I suppose they just think having a lot of foreclosures would look bad, and would ultimately be bad for the banks, while rent problems don’t show up on their economic radar.

    I really think it’s a lot more classist than that. America is supposed to be the ‘ownership society,’ so home’owners’ are ‘real Americans’ who deserve help, while renters are losers who deserve their suffering because god hates them.

  81. blf says

    I suppose they just think having a lot of foreclosures would look bad, and would ultimately be bad for the banks, while rent problems don’t show up on their economic radar.

    Another reason is because renters are often thought to be more mobile or transient, and hence able to move quickly, easily, and more willingly. In this modelfallacy a “homeowner” is bound to the house like a serf is bound to the land.

    Ergo, if you have rent problems, just move to a place with lower rent. But if you have problems paying for yer houseindenture, then the desk chairs can be rearranged to further the indenture and keep you bound.

  82. says

    NOT a Tony Tale:
    A young woman who works at my restaurant complained about a guest being rude and how she was going to tell her off. When I mentioned she shouldnt and to keep in mind the owner was nearby, she said she wasnt worried and that he was not her boss, God was. I told her that the owner writes her checks which pay her bills. Her response was that god takes care of her and that she is very blessed. Nearly threw up in my mouth, but just nodded and walked away. It was not the time or place to say what I wanted.

  83. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    Leadership is no longer a burden, an obligation of the gravest import. It has become a circle jerk, a fast track to ever more profitable schmoozing and glad handing for the profit of the few.

    “Become”?

  84. bluentx says

    Her response was that god takes care of her and that she is very blessed.

    Does she have kids or others dependent on her salary? How blessed will they feel by her ‘God will provide’ principle when they’re living out of the family [in the] Focus?

    I know, this is probably a worst case scenario I’m imagining here.

    It’s just that I see sooo many instances of this sort. People that have their fish emblems on the back of their junkers, witnessing to you at the drop of a hat, living in hovels while spending hours (several nights a week) doing church work (for free)….
    When will they realize ‘God is not providing’. They are providing and giving their time (and money) away is not helping anyone but the tax-exempt church.

    I’m not an ‘ always do what the boss says sort myself (legality and safety factored in) but sheesh, “You’re not the boss of me! God is!” Really?

    “Become”?

    True, political ‘jerkers’ aren’t new it’s just they’ve become so blatant about said jerkiness and openly proud of their creedo: “Everybody does it. Why not me?”

  85. Crudely Wrott says

    Become?

    Yeah, Azkyroth, I asked myself the same question as I was writing that post but I was on a roll and made little editing effort.

    Positions of power have always provided plentiful opportunity for abuse. Some things never seem to change except this:

    Self serving bastards have better tools to hide dissembling and (oooh, I love this term) moral turpitude than they had in the past. Interestingly, those tools are the very ones that others can use to expose them.

    . . . which has always . . . been the case . . .

    So why did I write “become” as if it was something new under the sun? Most likely because as time passes I become more aware. When I was younger the world seemed to be a brighter, happier place. As time passes it darkens and there are scratching sounds coming from the walls as if something is trying to get in.

    Sure, iffy wording but I’ll let it stand.

    Good catch. I was actually wondering if someone would raise the point. ;^>

  86. Crudely Wrott says

    . . . aaaannd I see that bluentx has a different take that entails not hiding wrongdoing.

    I’ll bet six hundred and sixty six quatloos that good arguments for both hiding and flaunting could be made. Dog knows there are enough examples gamboling about.

    Bring back the pillory and the ducking stool, I say! Nothing cleans up a mess like humiliation. Too bad that’s considered bad form these days.

    [Preview seems to be not working. Just me?]

  87. says

    On page 1 of this chapter of the [Lounge] thread, Texas sauntered into the spotlight with bad news, all kinds of bad news: EPA hobbled, abortion rights abridged, science textbooks adulterated with creationism, voting rights denied, etc.

    Okay, time to keep the Texas-WTF!? list going.

    Texas wants women seeking abortions to take adoption classes first. And, oh horrors, it is a Texas Senator that is a Democrat who is pushing this new bill.

    … Eddie Lucio, the only member of his party to vote in favor of the state’s sweeping new abortion restrictions.

    Lucio’s bill would require the Health and Human Services Commission to develop an “adoption education course” that women would be forced to take, in person or online, before being approved for an abortion. After completing the course, a woman would present a certificate of completion to her doctor….

    And wait, there’s more. Texas Republicans want Wendy Davis to foot the entire bill for their recent special sessions during which Davis filibustered the draconian anti-abortion bills. Link.

  88. Jacob Schmidt says

    So I need to apologize. In comment 29 in Chris’ recent post, I made some triggering comments. I don’t think my trigger warning was near sufficient considering how serious my comment was. I don’t think I should have made that comment at all. I’m sorry I posted it, and if I can repay anyone I hurt, I will.
    Thank you A. R for bringing that to my attention.

    I’m also sorry if I’m crossing a line in commenting on topics from a locked thread, but I really do think an apology is necessary.

  89. cicely (Still hating it, but what can you do?) says

    Linkies!
    I Do Not Want My Daughter to Be Nice.
    Today’s Tree Lobsters!

    rq: If a move only counts if all the boxes are unpacked, then I am in big trouble. The Husband and I have boxes that have been moved…let’s see…5 times now, in the last 30-ish years, and are sitting in the garage—still packed. Among other, more-recently-deposited boxes of…stuff.
     
    I’ve heard this rumor that garages are intended to be used as bedrooms for cars, but I don’t believe it.
     
    One day, we must mount up an Expedition with Son, to see what is in there.
    “One day, my Son, all of this will be yours!”
    :) :) :)

    On writing Wonder Woman.
    -

  90. cicely (Still hating it, but what can you do?) says

    Also, fuck Russia and its homophobic laws, together with its willingness to foist them on others.

    “Do you have any bombs?”
    “Not any more. The last one was used to free the previous idiot’s penis from the toaster.”

    I *snortlerofl’d*.

    Large *hug-drop* on Dalillama, with sympathy on the side.
    Wish I could help.
    :( :( :(

    (1) red food coloring, if consumed in sufficient quantity, exits largely undigested. WHEE.
    (2) habanero and jalapeño peppers are fucking delicious, but somewhat uncomfortable on exit.
    (3) The combination of these two facts is terrifying.

    1) That would be…alarming. And what are we callling “sufficient quantity”, just out of curiosity?
    2) Habanero and jalapeño peppers are Painful Hot Objects; Do Not Eat!!! Which takes care of the whole “exiting” problem (at the thought of which, my hemorrhoids twinged in alarm).
    3) To say the least!

    I really think it’s a lot more classist than that. America is supposed to be the ‘ownership society,’ so home’owners’ are ‘real Americans’ who deserve help, while renters are losers who deserve their suffering because god hates them.

    Intersecting with “If they’re poor, it’s their own damned fault; if they’d just get off their lazy asses and get a job…” cluelessness and venom.
    -

  91. Esteleth, statistically significant to p ≤ 0.001 says

    And what are we callling “sufficient quantity”, just out of curiosity?

    The amount in a single red velvet cupcake.

  92. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    Fuck. The Shwyzer discussion is melting my spoons. I need to bail on it NOW. :(

  93. says

    Did everyone see the life+1000 year sentence given to Ariel Castro? I watched it and felt so sick thinking about what he did to those women. I hope they have friends and family that love them and will be supportive.

  94. bluentx says

    . . . aaaannd I see that bluentx has a different take that entails not hiding wrongdoing.

    Ahhh… but you see therein lies the insidious multi-layering. [Amway goes to Washington.]

    First: Try to hide your underhandedness/transgressions.

    Second: If you get caught shout: “But you don’s understand! This is how business gets done!”

    Third: If your party is in power anything you do is good. When your opponents are in charge denigrate everything they do… even if it was your idea originally. Those other people are evil-minded and don’t know how to handle power don’t you know.

    Bonus:If you are a pious fraud fellow and get caught (boinking a staff members spouse, diddling the babysitter, testing your tap shoes with the guy in the next stall) fear not! You just proclaim: ‘I was anointed by GAWD! You must not question my methods! I am forgiven!

    Ta-Da!

    Did I forget anything?

  95. bluentx says

    America is supposed to be the ‘ownership society,’ so home’owners’ are ‘real Americans’

    Owners trying to maintain said home without falling into the credit card debt trap.

    Sometimes I fantasize about the good old days when I could just call the landlord to ‘Come fix it!’.
    Then again, living in a small town ‘tenants rights’ are practically non existent.

    Landlord: ‘No, I’m not going to fix it. But you better pay that rent on time and expect to forfeit any deposit when you leave because that damage wasn’t there when you signed the lease.”

    Tenant: ‘But you wouldn’t fix the problem that caused the damage!’

    Landlord: ‘Doesn’t matter. The damage happened during your lease period.’

  96. Crudely Wrott says

    I’d only add the occasional megalomaniac that cheats, steals, kills, makes war, enacts bad law and so forth because that megalomaniac is concerned for my welfare.

    “I’m only doing this for your own good. If I didn’t something about the prevailing badness would be too much for you to bear.”

    Other than that you have the field well covered.

    [More in a while . . . Eldest daughter needs ride.]

  97. Crudely Wrott says

    Eldest changed her mind. Where was I?

    Oh, yes. That famous quote from C.S.Lewis. Now to go find it . . . here it is courtesy of quotationspage.com:

    Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.

    linky: http://www.quotationspage.com/quotes/C._S._Lewis/

    Like overbearing babysitters there are those who just know better what is good for me than I do. Ain’t that the shits.

    [Preview still not working for me.]

  98. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Dang, upgrades can be funny. I upgraded my security suite for my iMac which included a program for back-up/synchronize function, and I started getting an error message during on synchronization. Something about a file that supposedly wasn’t on the drive. Erased the B drive, then synced from the A drive. Error still there. Erased the A drive, and synced from the B drive. No error, 4.1 TB of data transferred later. Since some of the data was knitting shows for the Redhead, now breathing easier….

  99. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    Owners trying to maintain said home without falling into the credit card debt trap.

    Mrmmmpht?

    [spits]

    Sorry. I was just gnawing on my leg, for some reason I can’t seem to get it free.
    (And our home is brand new, I can’t imagine buying an older place with preexisting problems.)

  100. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    And our home is brand new, I can’t imagine buying an older place with preexisting problems.

    You set aside so much per month, and do repairs upgrades as one can afford to pay cash for them.

  101. bluentx says

    You set aside so much per month, and do repairs upgrades as one can afford to pay cash for them.

    That was my plan.
    Then:
    -I needed $2,000 in gas plumbing replaced (in February).
    -Other plumbing froze and burst (not all of which I could fix myself). Plumber= $$ chaching $$.
    -6 months after that the water heater went kurput!
    -My cell phone died (not covered by over priced calling plan, of course).
    -Former SO, whom I lent money to (to pay off IRS bill) stopped paying me back.
    -Needed new tires to get to/from !!&8#!! job…………
    -……
    -……
    -……
    -……

    -Plan shot to hell….

  102. cicely (Still hating it, but what can you do?) says

    That was our plan, too.
    Then:
    – 9/11 axed several large, pending, East Coast installations, causing financial troubles at work, and therefore at home.
    – Former business owner damned near killed the company altogether by not paying taxes…and ignoring the IRS’ communications on the matter. Also, embezzlement. Further financial trouble at work and home.
    – Bankruptcy.
    – Just clear of paying out in installments on Bankruptcy, the MRSAcre.
    and most recently
    – Just clear of paying out in installments on MRSAcre, the Husband’s Completely Uncalled-For Gall Bladder Emergency.
    – Plus: Much Ado With Malfunctioning Automobiles, in Diuerse Partes.
     
    *sigh*
    One day, we will take care of the alarming floor situation. One day, we will repair/replace the heating and air duct-work. One day, we will replace the squirrel-gnawed under-eaves. One day, we will fix the squirrel-gnawed places in the attic. One day, we will insulate the damned, squirrel-gnawed attic. One day, we will paint the damned house.
    One day.
    *double sigh*
    -

  103. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    I’m sorry bluentx and cicely, I really have little to complain about in the face of that. We got caught because Chez Fishy needed driveway* and a couple of other things that weren’t in the building contract. Those overages ended up on the cards and now we’re struggling.

    *Our land had been a rail station and a lumber yard for a mill in the past and we were hoping to get away with it. But noooo, of course the solid ground isn’t where the drive needs to be.

  104. says

    bluentx:

    That was my plan.

    Yeah. Funny how when plans collide at 180kph with reality, reality always wins.

    That’s why I no longer make plans. I plan contingencies.

    Not that it’s made any difference.

  105. cicely (Still hating it, but what can you do?) says

    FossilFishy: *hugs*. Not your fault, and I certainly didn’t perceive any hint of “more persecuted than thou”! Just, no plan ever survives contact with the squirrels.
     
    …the damned, fucking squirrels.
    -

  106. cicely (Still hating it, but what can you do?) says

    In any case, I think that, inasmuch as we do have a house, with functioning plumbing and electrimaticity and all, my Tally of Woe has to come under the heading of First World Problems.
    -

  107. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    Squirrels!!!1!!!1!!

    Do you think they might be in league with the… >.> [whispers] opossums? <.<

    Hugs right back at you.

  108. bluentx says

    …no plan ever survives contact with the squirrels.

    …the damned, fucking squirrels.

    Raccoons.

    …my Tally of Woe has to come under the heading of First World Problems.

    That’s how I try to look at it… could be a lot worse…. But could I please have just one month…even a week without something else going wrong? I get the first ten items on the ‘must do list’ taken care of, start to save a little…. think I see light at the end of the tunnel and…. the refrigerator craps out….and the washing machine is on its last leg….. and the A/C goes out….

    A break… plllleeeeaaase ?[/ Roger Rabbit voice]

  109. says

    Just a note that I looked up the progress of AJ Johnson’s lawsuit against American Atheists, and it is still active, although there hasn’t been any hearings yet. No-one seemed to have posted the docket number before, so I listed it (and various other legal details) in this comment over at the article on the lawsuit at Black Skeptics.

    There are three documents that have been filed so far, which are not available online — it would be nice if someone would request them from the court and post them somewhere.

  110. says

    bluentx:
    I invoke Who Framed Roger Rabbit frequently at work using just that line. I like to think I get everything but the slobber down.

    Gosh, I love that movie.

    “My only purpose in life is to Make. People. Laugh!”
    “Shave and a haircut, two bits”
    “OH MY GOD ITS DIIIIIP!”
    “Do you remember me Eddie? When I killed your brother, I talked JUST. LIKE. THIIIIIS!”

  111. says

    Excerpt:
    “According to Florida Escambia County Sheriff David Morgan in a CNN interview Thursday, the police officers who fired 15 shots at 60-year-old Roy Middleton in the driveway of his and his mother’s home acted entirely within their limits in response to a 911 call for a suspected car theft. For his late-night excursion to grab cigarettes out of his mother’s car, Middleton is now recovering from a bullet wound in his leg, along with bullets piercing his mother’s car and the side of the house.”

    http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2013/08/01/2396801/escambia-sheriff-unarmed-shooting/

  112. cicely (Still hating it, but what can you do?) says

    Squirrels!!!1!!!1!!
     
    Do you think they might be in league with the… >.> [whispers] opossums? <.<

    I wouldn’t be a bit surprised.
     
    Ever notice how much cuter small furry animals are when they aren’t destroying your house?

    Something to warm the hearts of Trekies everywhere.

    *sniffle*
    …something in my eye….

    Raccoons.

    Oh, yes; damn them, too! Cute, deceptively-cuddly-looking little kibble bandits. We may know that it is not a humanity-loving Universe by the fact that those fuzzy little suckers have hands.
    *grumble*
    Does the bag say Purina Raccoon Chow? Well, does it???
    No. I thought not. So quit “foraging” in our cats’ food dishes!!!
    It’s probably not “nutritionally balanced” for you anyways.
    *grumblegrumblegrumble*

    Ah, Who Framed Roger Rabbit! The very first movie we took Son to, when he was three. And very well-behaved. :)
     
    The Husband and I were reminiscing about that movie just yesterday, over lunch.
    -

  113. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    Ha, success!

    From the estate agent:

    Thank you for leaving [address redacted] in immaculate order….”

    Emphasis mine.

  114. cicely (Still hating it, but what can you do?) says

    immaculate order….”

    Probably such a miracle in their experience that they are now looking expectantly for the arrival of Three Wise AssesMen from the East.
    :)
    -

  115. rq says

    I, too, am among the new homeowners who wishes that any and all emergency repairs (heating system, no bath in bathroom, etc.) had waited at least the first six months to rear their heads, because our amazing financial plan, wherein no part of homeowning was to be a burden beyond the essential, has been shot all to pea-hell. But, First-World Problems.
    I grew up in a house of constant (and now, I suspect, permanent) renovations.

    cicely
    re: Wonder Woman
    I think yesterday I posted a link or two about why the excuse of ‘Wonder Woman is complicated!!!’ is just a silly excuse. And it is. Especially if you think (really think) how many alternative and all-kinds-of stories male superheroes have.

    Dalillama
    I’m really sorry the law is such an asshole, and I’m really, really sorry you won’t be qualifying for unemployment for whatever dumbfuck reason, and I really, really, really wish there was a better way to help you out. :(

  116. cicely (Still hating it, but what can you do?) says

    rq, you did. That’s why I added mine.
    -

  117. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    They must have been really impressed, the agent just called Ms. Fishy to thank her. Seems like a sad statement on the usual level of care they see as much as it’s a commendation of our efforts. Or: Here come the wiseguys!

  118. says

    cicely

    Oh, yes; damn them, too! Cute, deceptively-cuddly-looking little kibble bandits. We may know that it is not a humanity-loving Universe by the fact that those fuzzy little suckers have hands.

    I have often thought that it would be interesting to see if I could teach them to use wrenches and screwdrivers.

  119. rq says

    Today in links:

    The beautiful rainbow eucalyptus of the Northern Hemisphere.

    They had me convinced at “cheese is the Grand Poobah”.

    Apparently, the wrong vodka is being boycott, but in my opinion, they can boycott away – it’s not like Latvia has the amazingest record in LGBT rights.

    The power of genetics, as shown in uncanny portraits. The article is below the album, but it’s a superficially interesting read – in that it gets evolution wrong. But their heart is in the right place!

  120. rq says

    Dalillama
    Don’t say such things! Considering their abilities to get into the raccoon-proof chicken-feed cans, I’m pretty sure they’ve been practicing secretly, and are now sending negotiating parties to join forces with cephalopods.

  121. bluentx says

    They (raccoons) use the ladder (but so do my cats) to get on the roof. Also, watched one of the buggers use the vinyl siding to walk…down..the…side…of…my…house. Those little fingers fit under the overlapping panels just right apparently. It was rather weird to see.

  122. rq says

    bluentx
    Raccoonman!! Opens all cans and all bags in the dark of night, leaving a trail of stinking garbage to hide his own scent. No wall is too steep, no opening too narrow! As long as theirs garbage at the end of the tunnel, he’ll do it for ya!
    And they can drive, too!

    (There’s a car commercial advertising awesome brakes with raccoons and garbage, can’t find it right now.)

    Also, I went to google ‘raccoon skeleton’ because I’m convinced they have tiny skeletons underneath all that skin, fur and fat, but this showed up instead… :o

    I think I lost my Master Cheesecake recipe. :( Can’t find it, need it. :(

  123. bluentx says

    Raccoonman! ….and his minions!
    Or is just a nice middle class family? I have up to 5 for breakfast some days. Some are teenager-ish but a couple of those suckers are huge !

    Heh! the Wendy’s commercial….

  124. Thumper; Atheist mate says

    I’ve just read Chris Clarke’s piece on Suicide as a Rhetorical Tool. I am annoyed for several reasons; so, in order of annoyance:

    1- I was in a relationship when I was 17 which I have recently come to realise was an emotionally abusive one. I developed severe committophobia as a result of that relationship, and almost six years later I’m just starting to fix myself. One of the ways she kept me in that relationship was by threatening suicide when I tried to break up with her. Chris broached an important, if difficult, topic and instead of actually discussing the topic, a lot of commenters merely attacked Chris for daring to write about it. Some of what Chris said was poorly phrased and I could see why some commenters had concerns. Some commenters (Esteleth springs to mind) very reasonably pointed out these concerns. Others simply misinterpreted the post and indulged in quote mining and brow beating until comments were shut down. That was a conversation I really needed to have, and I’m dissapointed that a place that is usually very good at tackling difficult issues allowed discussion on this one to be shut down.

    2- There was a lot of bullshit about how suicidal people are selfish, notably from unclefrogy. That pissed me off. This trope is ridiculous and stupid and harmful, and I am fucking sick of hearing it. To say it in a thread where you know full well there are commenters who suffer from depression, suicidal tendencies and some who have attempted suicide makes it even worse.

    3- As I said, it’s a difficult topic, and an important one. It must be very difficult to write about, especially for Chris, since Chris suffers from depression and suicidal tendencies, something he has mentioned before. And yet despite this some commenters chose to take the uncharitable position that Chris was attempting to shame any depressed people from talking about it in public; a position I don’t understand since it didn’t come across like that to me at all, let alone that it would be entirely nonsensical for someone who suffers from depression and suicidal tendencies to discourage discussion of it in public. There were several commenters suffering from depression on that thread who said the same thing. It must have been a delicate and difficult subject for Chris to write about, and I imagine one very important to him, and some people’s reaction was to descend in righteous anger and indulge in gratuitous misinterpretation, strawmanning, brow beating and minimalising of Chris’ experiences; effectively bullying a depressed man off of his own thread. This annoyed me more than any of the others.

    P.S.

    Since I’ve finally broached the subject; I owe a thank you to anyone on here who has discussed their own abuse at any time. Not just emotional abuse, but any kind, because this forced me to realise that the definition of abuse I was working to was incomplete. This in turn made me do some research, which made me realise what it was that happened to me and forced me to admit it to myself. Now I’ve admitted it, I find I can start to fix myself and it’s happening a lot quicker than I thought. So thank you.

  125. John Morales says

    Thumper:

    That was a conversation I really needed to have, and I’m dissapointed that a place that is usually very good at tackling difficult issues allowed discussion on this one to be shut down.

    Was it not Chris Clarke who shut the discussion down?

  126. carlie says

    Thumper – I had the same kind of reactions you did to the whole thing (I also read about it after). But this is probably better Thunderdome talk rather than lounge talk.

    John – because he kept being chastised about it long after he had written several comments clarifying and refining his rhetoric.

  127. bluentx says

    Good ta see ya Thumper!
    Agree with most (if not all) of what you said (it’s late-for me- comprehension not the best– will read it again later).
    I came late to that (thread) party and had nothing substantive to add (that others had not already said better anyway).
    I hope Chris’ “I’m out” was misinterpreted. (Nooooo! Chris don’t gooooo!)

  128. bluentx says

    Forgot this link yesterday…

    Another one almost lost to the War on Drugs:
    http://www.onenewspage.com/n/US/74vxqpt0k/Forgotten-student-in-jail-awarded-million-in.htm
    “Forgot?” Should I apply with the DEA?

    I missed the date and I didn’t get Med anything!:
    http://www.dailykos.com/story/2013/07/30/1227697/-Happy-48th-Birthday-Medicare

    Repeat as many times as necessary: “I will NOT make Linda Lovelace joke, I will NOT make Linda Lovelace joke… I will NOT…”
    http://www.dailykos.com/story/2013/07/31/1227970/-Obama-gives-Larry-Summers-full-throated-defense-as-dissenters-push-Yellen-for-Fed-chief

  129. Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought says

    I wasn’t sure what to do, so I figured I’d just ask:
    Am I still welcome here after what happened yesterday with Chris?

    [crossposted Lounge/Thunderdome]

  130. Thumper; Atheist mate says

    @John Morales

    yes, but only because, as I said, he was essentially hounded off his own thread.

    @ carlie

    OK, I’ll x-post to there. Sorry if it was inappropriate.

    @bluentx

    Thanks :) nice to see you too. Have you not been around lately, or have we just been on different threads?

    I too sincerely hope “I’m out” merely meant that thread :-/ I enjoy Chris’ writing.

  131. bluentx says

    Past bedtime.
    Have lost THREE drafts of comment.
    I give up!
    Goodnight/good morning!

  132. rq says

    Who called raccoons kibble bandits? cicely? Because you’re right – look at those little hands go in that video! Also a case to be made for raccoon bipedalism at the end there…

  133. rq says

    News from Latvia.
    One of the largest hospitals in the capital was on fire today (article in Latvian); 23 oxygen tanks in the basement exploded. Under investigation. (This shouldn’t impact my workload, since fatalities are few.)

    Yesterday, a prominent Latvian journalist was forced to apologise on air to the catholic church for saying it should be disbanded and liquidated. His notpology (for this once, I’m glad it was a notpology) was followed by the assertion that the catholic church should look into its own sins.

    And prominent internet news site announces: reason for this year’s catastrophes is the 11-year sun cycle! Because we value our science education.

  134. says

    I am having one of THOSE days.
    I woke up crying and cannot get out of that mood.
    Stressed about no car and not going to get one again anytime soon.
    Stressed about the tickets I cannot pay.
    Stressed about the insurance company trying to collect.
    Stressed about paying $40 one way to work five times a week.
    Stressed about these fucking fleas.
    Stressed that one of my cats has some irritation under her skin.

    I just feel so fucking helpless and adrift.
    The face that I put on is but a fake one.
    The joy found in life has been absent for so long.
    The loneliness is palpable.

    The weight feels unbearable at times.

    Sigh.
    Dont mind me.

  135. Owlmirror says

    Oh, yes. That famous quote from C.S.Lewis. Now to go find it . . . here it is courtesy of quotationspage.com:

    Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.

    Of course, C. S. Lewis was perfectly capable of being a moral busybody himself.

    I’ve been following Ana Mardoll’s deconstruction of Narnia. It’s sometimes uneven — I don’t buy off on every interpretation she’s offered — but she points out a lot of bad/lazy/implicitly unfair stuff that Lewis did in his writing.

    Anyway, her most recent post goes off on a bit of a tangent based on this quote from Lewis’ The Problem of Pain.

    My own idea, for what it is worth, is that all sadness which is not either arising from the repentance of a concrete sin and hastening towards concrete amendment or restitution, or else arising from pity and hastening to active assistance, is simply bad; and I think we all sin by needlessly disobeying the apostolic injunction to ‘rejoice’ as much as by anything else.

    I think a lot of the problems with C. S. Lewis’ writing can be summed up by: C. S. Lewis was often kind of an asshole.

  136. howard says

    @Tony:

    A very wise person once said… yes, all this that’s going on is just ‘in your head.’

    But so are you. That’s the most important place of all, ‘in your head.’

    Feelings are real and important and feeling like that sucks.

    I hope you can feel better.

  137. rq says

    Tony
    *hugs*
    That’s all I’m good at, plus there’s a cute raccoon video in one of my comments. ;)

  138. rq says

    Owlmirror
    Oooh, thanks for a new time-waster! I was a big fan of the Chronicles of Narnia when I was younger, it’s one of the first (if not the first) series I read and loved, that and the Tripod Trilogy (forget actual name/author). I read them because they seemed so grown up due to the fact that they were gifted to my older brother and he was reading them.
    Anyway. I’ll be going through the deconstructions – even if they’re wrong, they’re no doubt interesting!

  139. opposablethumbs says

    Tony, you’re a very special person around here – I’m truly sorry this has hit you again, but know that you are genuinely liked and admired and valued in these parts; geographically distant internet-stranger-friends are not the same, I know, but you matter to a lot of people! Would it sound just too daft and sentimental and nonsensical if I were to admit that one of the things I’d do if I won the national lottery is ask to visit your bar for a drink some day? I can honestly think of few things I’d enjoy more than hanging out at your bar and chatting in person, and I’m willing to bet that a lot of people who do have the pleasure and privilege of conversing with you irl really appreciate it too.
    I’m not likely to win the national lottery (hey, it’s only about 25 million-to-1) but I’d just like to send a bunch of hugs if that’s ok.

  140. Crudely Wrott says

    Tony: The weight feels unbearable at times.

    Yes. But bear it you will.

    I went looking for a song for you because it always got me grinnin': “What’s Happenin’ Jim?” by Shawn Phillips. YouTube doesn’t seem to have it but on Shawn’s MySpace page it is available for free listening though it appears you have to sign in. Maybe you can find it? It’s no cure all but boy, howdy, is it one nifty little ditty!

    Here, have some fortitude. I’ve got a little extra just now.

  141. says

    Owlmirror @677, Thanks for the quote from C.S. Lewis. I enjoyed that.

    Mormon brethren are always quoting C.S. Lewis … but not that quote. Mormons love C.S. Lewis. I think it may be because he is one of the few relatively competent writers that is LDS-approved.

    Mormons necrodunked C.S. Lewis, of course … multiple times:
    http://exmormon.org/phorum/read.php?2,403168,403782

    Honors C.S. Lewis was taught as a legit course at BYU.

    Past Prophet/Seer/Revelator Ezra Taft Benson plagiarised his sermon on pride from C.S. Lewis.
    http://www.exmormon.org/mormon/mormon315.htm

  142. says

    Tony @ 646, I saw that story about the shooting of yet another black man in Florida.

    Just what is fucking up with Florida? Dystopia.

    Maybe Governor Scott’s attitudes have seeped into the water.

  143. yazikus says

    Mormon brethren are always quoting C.S. Lewis … but not that quote.

    I think other christians select their CS Lewis selectively as well. I wanted to purchase his book Till We have Faces, and thought Oh, I’ll pop down to the xtian book store, they love CS Lewis there.

    So there I was in the xtian bookstore, but the book I wanted was nowhere to be seen. I went up to the counter and inquired, was given a chilly look and told “We don’t carry that CS Lewis book in our store”.

  144. carlie says

    I’m trying to decide between two almost identical shades of tan to paint a room.

    I have so many sample patches on the walls I might as well just make alternating stripes and get it over with.

  145. Crudely Wrott says

    Carlie, when I was doing home improvement not so long ago, one of our customers had picked out a color but could not decide between the flat finish and the eggshell finish. Solution? Alternating vertical stripes about ten or twelve inches wide. The end effect was really quite nice and the customer was very happy with it. Perhaps you could do something similar? (That way you wouldn’t have to choose just one shade.)

    Her color was a deep red wine color, I forget the name. You’re choosing shades of tan. Sherwin Williams has a color called Softer Tan that was gaining popularity a couple years ago. Our painters brushed and rolled several acres’ worth of wall with it.

  146. says

    God, is there anything redeemable about the Republican party?

    Excerpt:

    http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2013/08/02/2404301/36-senators-introduce-bill-prohibiting-virtually-any-new-federal-law-helping-workers/

    More than three-quarters of the Senate Republican caucus signed onto legislation introduced Wednesday by Sens. Tom Coburn (R-OK) and Rand Paul (R-KY) that could render it virtually impossible for Congress to enact any legislation intended to improve working conditions or otherwise regulate the workplace. Had their bill been in effect during the Twentieth Century, for example, there would likely be no nationwide minimum wage, no national ban on workplace discrimination, no national labor law and no overtime in most industries.

  147. chigau (残念ですね) says

    carlie
    Lightly scribe a picture of Jebus or the FSM into the undercoat.
    Let us know if anyone can see it after you paint.
    ;)

  148. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    I was in a relationship when I was 17 which I have recently come to realise was an emotionally abusive one. I developed severe committophobia as a result of that relationship, and almost six years later I’m just starting to fix myself. One of the ways she kept me in that relationship was by threatening suicide when I tried to break up with her.

    Well, obviously you should have Shown Some Empathy, no matter what she’d done to you or how sincere you reasonably believed she was.

    As I said, it’s a difficult topic, and an important one. It must be very difficult to write about, especially for Chris, since Chris suffers from depression and suicidal tendencies, something he has mentioned before. And yet despite this some commenters chose to take the uncharitable position that Chris was attempting to shame any depressed people from talking about it in public; a position I don’t understand since it didn’t come across like that to me at all

    The assertion that someone has said something Problematic cannot fail. It can only be failed.

    (I may have mentioned this discussion being hard for me?)

  149. grumpyoldfart says

    Albert Mohler, President, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
    Friday, August 02, 2013

    How should Christians think of Ariel Castro? Is he just sick? Is he a monster? Could he really be “a normal person”? Well, in the first place, Castro is a sinner. That puts him right within the human race. After the Fall, the “normal” identity for humanity is sinner — that includes every single one of us. And, like every sinner, Ariel Castro’s only hope is Jesus Christ. He needs a Savior.

    It is normal — indeed universal — for human beings to be sinners, but few among us are sociopaths. And for that we must be ever thankful. Christians must thank God for the restraint against evil that he has given humanity. These restraints include the moral law, the human conscience, government, social structures, and the providence of God in human affairs. Without the moral law and the restraining power of the human conscience, we would all become sociopaths — in a hurry. Without government and its responsibility to execute justice, sociopaths would roam freely. Without the providential reign of God in human affairs, sociopaths would rule completely.

    http://www.religiontoday.com/columnists/al-mohler/i-am-not-a-monster-ariel-castro-as-sinner-and-sociopath.html

    Is he saying that we should not blame god for allowing sociopaths to commit their crimes but that we should thank god that he doesn’t allow more of them to do so? I think he is.

    And what is he saying about the victims whom he regards as sinners with the potential to become sociopaths?

  150. says

    @695: Ariel Castro went to church regularly. One his victims testified that he went to church every Sunday and then came home after church to abuse the women he held captive.

    Ariel Castro seems to consider himself a Christian, a saved man.

    Castro also claimed the sex he had with the women was consensual.

    Fucking hypocrites and deluded idiots, all of them.

  151. cicely (Still hating it, but what can you do?) says

    Am I still welcome here after what happened yesterday with Chris?

    I think so—but then, I came along after the thread went critical, and later read the whole thing with considerable confusion—it seemed to go south in several directions at once. Whether you need to sort anything out with Chris would be up to you and him.

    I figure that the raccoons are the potential Next Team, if we leave them any livable land-based area to work with. And if they were to team up with the crows, we’d be toast right now.

    A train-load of *hugs* for Tony. I know those feelings all too well.
    All the things that opposablethumbs said.

    rq: You have a return email.
    :)
    -

  152. Nutmeg says

    A belated congrats to FossilFishy on the new house!

    ***

    Assorted *hugs&icecream&puppies* for those who need them. I’ve only been able to skim this week.

    ***

    Update on my sleep weirdness and associated data collection:

    I managed to record a night terror about 10 days ago (can’t remember if I mentioned it here), but the microphone on my webcam didn’t pick up good sound quality. I can tell that it’s a night terror and it lasts about 3 minutes, but not much else. (I didn’t wake up and I don’t remember that episode at all.) So I bought a cheap microphone, which is still better than the webcam. I haven’t done anything weirder than a bit of sleep-talking one night since then, but I should be able to get a good recording the next time I have a night terror. My stress levels are a lot lower right now, so I’m not expecting much to happen until I get closer to my defense date (late August).

    My hypothesis that the tangled bedsheets were from frequent, unremembered night terrors seems to be incorrect. I’ve had lots of nights with tangled sheets but no weirdness on the recording. It may be that this set of sheets is particularly easy to dislodge, or I may be thrashing a lot in my sleep.

    I had an interesting discussion with a couple of labmates today – one of them also had thesis-induced night terrors, and another has had a whole bunch of weird sleep stuff for years. That makes me feel a lot better, actually.

  153. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    he kept being chastised about it long after he had written several comments clarifying and refining his rhetoric.

    Maybe people should stop doing that.

  154. blf says

    [I]s there anything redeemable about the [thugs] party?

    The mildly deranged penguin speculates that ground up and sprayed out of aeroplanes as chemtails they might slow down peamageddon.

    I think they would be so corrosive the slurry would dissolve the tankers before reaching the airports.

    However, it does occur to me they are so dense that, squished into bricks, you could build a nuclear waste safe repository out of them.

    Throwing them to the lions, scorpions, piranhas, bears, lampreys, et al., as a public entertainment, has its attractions. Unfortunately, the lions, scorpions, prianhas, bears, lamperys, et al., are liable to throw them back as being too toxic to eat.

    Pushing them off the edge of Earth on an expedition to find the bottommost turtle is a possibly (a B Ark without the spaceship).

  155. Walton says

    It has been a good week. The Walton now has an offer of pupillage, starting in October 2014, and so will actually get to practise as an immigration lawyer.

    Also, after all these years of reading PZ’s posts, I have finally become really interested in evolutionary biology. Today I’ve even been arguing with a creationist over on the Scienceblogs version of Pharyngula.

  156. Walton says

    I’ve recently been reading Sean Carroll’s The Making of the Fittest. I think he’s a better writer even than Dawkins,* and that’s saying something.

    (*I don’t care for Dawkins as a person, for many reasons, but even his most vociferous detractors would have to admit that he’s a great science writer. I compromise by borrowing his books from the library, thus making me able to read them without actually having to give him any money.)

  157. bluentx says

    Gak!
    After saying yesterday that I have up to five raccoons come to chow down on my kitties kibble…. there are seven for breakfast today!
    Is my front porch listed in the Zagat Guide Raccoon Edition?!

    Maybe I should stop talking about it or tomorrow I may have ten show up!

  158. carlie says

    Congratulations, Walton!!!! You have certainly earned it. :)

    Nutmeg – hugs. I had nightmares about grad school for a decade after being done. In some ways school is the best thing ever, but in others… not so much.

  159. rq says

    Congrats, Walton!

    bluentx
    The word is spreading… ‘Hey guys, free buffet! Yeah, catfood! Woo hoo! Let’s go!’

    +++

    Escalation:
    I’m going to go prune the roses a bit.
    Oh look, large weeds. I’ll pull those out, while I’m here.
    (an hour later on hands and knees)
    I guess I got the little ones, too.
    At least the roses look tamed again!

  160. carlie says

    Wow, this is fantastic: kickstarter for tactile watch. It’s a beautiful design, too. They have over 11 times the amount requested, so it’s obviously filling a big desire/need hole. I was quite amused by the part of the video demonstrating all the reasons sighted people could make use of it, too. :)

  161. says

    rq, is that “Tripod Trilogy” you’re thinking of: The White Mountains; The City of Gold and Lead; The Pool of Fire by John Christopher? I really liked those books at a kid — though I haven’t read them in many years
    I actually think I know where they are on my shelf. I was kind of hoping that I could someday either read them to, or encourage Spawn to read them on his own. Alas, that will probably never be. Too much
    drama in them would trigger his anxiety issues. I wonder how they hold up; worth re-reading?

    Found sufficient spoons to make the albondigas soup. nom, nom, slurp, slurp. yum. We’ll have leftovers for a few days … which is fine with me.

    Work has me stressed out for reasons … co-workers who, ah, disappoint me; too much to do against a fast approaching deadline; worked on task that really needs to get done but isn’t in the area I’m supposed to be working on so awaiting a chastizement from supervisor; coming in late to a discussion of requirements between groups (that I was on the periphery of) that was completely bollocked and I think one of the people is gas lighting me* when I think it was he that completely dropped the ball.

    *
    Him: How could you ever think to expect the system to do reasonable things X, Y and Z? It’s all spelled out in the requirements document. You were silly to attempt what you did.
    Me: Which document? I see few scatter hither and thither, none of which say I shouldn’t expect X, Y or Z.
    [crickets chirp]
    Me: Hello, where can I find this primary document?
    Him: Ah, in your e-mail inbox today. See, your name is even first (alphabetically, of everyone who was involved in a discussion or two we had 1.5 years ago) on this poorly edited, incomplete, document that I was writing but never completed, distributed nor made public. But it was all settled over a year ago; if you had issues you should have expressed them then.
    Me: [I don’t remember ever seeing that paper other than perhaps over his shoulder while we we having brainstorming session. Am I completely forgetting some important later discussions?]

    Can I also rage against a coworker who asked for help, but types too damn slow for the dictation I’m giving them. To the point where both parties are frustrated and I’m invited to do the typing on their machine. And only after a few minutes of that … they start hacking a cough and mention that they don’t feel very well. dafuq? Thanks. I’ve been pretty steadfast in avoiding typing on other people’s computers for some months now (after continually being sick for some months), and you lull me into breaking that streak…

    Tony, and others, I wish there were something I could do to help. Virtual hugs and chocolate for any in need, in lieu something more concrete.

  162. carlie says

    Walton – so does that mean you’ll be Karl Davies’ Lyle Anderson to someone’s Stephen Fry’s Peter Kingdom, except with all immigration cases instead of the wacky and adorable goings-on of a small seaside village? :)

  163. bluentx says

    The word is spreading…

    Yeah, but I never see the possums pigging out, or the skunks (thank FSM!), or the family of dear that pass through. It must be a coonspiracy!

    [No, thanks autocorrect… I meant to do that!]

  164. carlie says

    bluentx – interesting; you have to get 9 down in the cast list before even getting to a woman. *sigh*

    dontpanic – I’m so sorry about the work stuff. I hate routine incompetence. My anecdote: I just found out yesterday that someone who’s been on one of my important email lists for two years has never gotten any of my emails, because the work system auto-filled their address to one that’s defunct. And not like they changed their own address defunct, like a quarter of the employees used this particular system and then the employer stopped using that system and wiped them all out so the employer knew damned well those were all dead and should have erased them from the system defunct.

    It’s just … why can’t things just work the way they’re supposed to? It’s just basic correct operations and people acting decently and performing their jobs we’re asking for, right?

  165. opposablethumbs says

    Many congratulations on your pupillage, Walton. You’ll be a great immigration lawyer! (I only wish everyone got to encounter a lawyer as committed as you are).
    Haven’t read the Carroll – it probably ought to go on the wish-list …

  166. rq says

    dontpanic
    Yes, that’s the one! I’ll have to seek it out and give it a re-read as well. I remember it being fairly decent, but then, I thought that about a lot of things. ;)
    *hugs* for the work situation, if you want! :(

    bluentx
    Thanks, and good night!

    carlie
    That’s a nice watch! Very elegant, and I love the fact that it has a purpose besides looking fashionable.

  167. Ogvorbis: Purveyor of Mediocre Humours! says

    The Walton now has an offer of pupillage

    When I first read this, my mind went weird (I did read the link, so I understand now). I wondered if The Walton, now entering pupillage, was then going to go to chrysalisage and then butterflyage?

    So congrats on your pupillage, Walton.

    ======

    One of Wife’s few vices is the purchase of scratch tickets (she likes the crossword ones best). Last night, she had a moderately big winner. So we went to the grocery store and had fun.

    Boy and I got two large chunks of a fish called a wahoo. And (if it isn’t raining) we plan to grill them tonight — brush with olive oil, sprinkle with alder-smoked salt, and consume with grilled veggies.

  168. nightshadequeen says

    Congratz, Walton!

    ————–

    In the line of minor derails, does anyone have any experience with MoodGym?