[Lounge #413]


This is the lounge. You can discuss anything you want, but you will do it kindly. I need a nap so bad.

Status: Heavily Moderated; Previous thread


  1. Pteryxx says

    my first thought: “Too small to ear-tag yet. Could still genotype, with determined Sharpie-wielding.”

  2. says


    That’s good news. Although it’s getting better, the NHL still has a race issue it needs to deal with. Simply put, playing hockey as a youngster costs money, more so than many other sports, so minorities are extremely under represented in the NHL.

    They would do well to spend a lot more money bringing the sport to poor communities. It’s an investment that would pay off in the future for sure.

    Giliell, I agree, thanks =)

  3. says

    Weeee! New Lounge!

    Only 7 lounges left before Lounge #420!

    I fear I may not have the required things needed for Lounge #420 because saving up for the WiS2 conference has made me unable to afford most other things.

    Speaking of which… I booked the hotel! It’s going to cost $478.61 (that’s with taxes and stuff added). $530 was donated, which means I have $51.39 to donate to CFI for the WiS conferences…

  4. Beatrice (looking for a happy thought) says

    Vaya Con Dios are going to play in Zagreb as part of their farewell tour. Yay!

  5. Xaivius (Formerly Robpowell, Acolyte of His Majesty Lord Niel DeGrasse Tyson I) says

    A new lounge exists. And lo, PZed looked upon it, and declared that it “Was nice, but needed more tentacle”
    and lo, there were tentacles.
    NateHevens, resident SOOPER-GENIUS… apparently…@7

    you might appreciate this from a Washington State University lab.

  6. rq says

    Giliell from L.412:710
    *raises hand* Ummm, my younger brother did something similar in first or second year in university – didn’t get kicked out of uni because it was off uni property, but got drunk with some friends and pointed a toy pistol out a second floor window at a passer-by and told him he was going to kill him as a joke… Got the special ops team on the job. He wasn’t allowed to leave the country for two years’ probation, but because he hadn’t been in trouble before and wasn’t in any trouble during, and had all kinds of references for good behaviour, it was struck from his record once his time was up.
    If he’s been a good kid, I really hope the system will give him a similar chance. But getting kicked out of uni, that just sucks.

    I hope discussing kissing didn’t make you feel bad (although it sounds as if it did). I didn’t mean to put any pressure on or awaken any bad feelings, but it looks like I may have – I apologize! But you have no reason to feel bad for not liking kissing. You’re a great person anyway!

    I think I’m going to have to steal some curriculum ideas from you. Let me know how the trebuchet-building goes (I’ll be expecting photos!). In the meantime, the kids hone their LEGO skills.
    And yes, I’m looking forward to the development of the Hornettes. The vocalists are amazing. I’ll see if I can dig up any other videos or recordings.


    Took the kids to see a modern ballet/orchestral piece for children today (Husband won the tickets from the radio – a first-time event in our family!). The piece was a new composition from a local composer based on Jules Verne’s Around the World in 80 Days. The music was great, most of the dancing was ok except for two specific individuals and one group, but what disappointed me most was that Middle Child asked me to wear a tie (picked out a nice one of Husband’s, too) to the event (since he and Eldest would be getting all prettied up as well), but changed his mind at the last minute. :( After I changed my shirt, too, to make sure it was a reasonably tie-able shirt. Oh well, next time I’ll insist (at least he knows I’m game).

  7. rq says

    Oh, and I know it’s not anymore, but happy Gagarin day. On this day 52 (that’s 4 times 13, for those counting like the Mayans) years ago, the world realized we can actually get off this rock and survive.

    And I sign off with some dating advice. Slightly related to previous conversation.
    Good night!

  8. Denverly says

    A week or so ago I posted in another thread that I was worried abdominal pain I was having. To Caine, opposablethumbs, cicely, and anyone else who may have noticed/cared in that allies-on-the-internet kid of way, results came back normal. Mystery pain is probably hormonal mystery pain, but not what-the-heck-is -that-on-your-ovary kind of mystery pain. See, the clenched tentacles worked. All praise Cthulu and the Dark Lord Myers. I shall sacrifice an appropriate number of brain cells to Acolyte Nerd’s grog.

  9. chigau (please don't let me be misunderstood) says

    Yay for not-so-bad mystery pain.

    in other news:
    I was going to put-away the snow shovels for the season but we’re under a snowfall warning.

  10. says

    @ Asher Kay (#5)

    Thanks. I might do some posts on emergentism, physicalism, and standard arguments for dualism chez moi in a couple weeks. It’ll have to wait until after this deadline, though. And right now I’m going to go get that nap.

  11. Tethys says


    Hooray for the diagnoses, and tentacles crossed the pain stays gone.


    I hear you. We had almost melted out on Monday, and then got a winter storm. I am so tired of white, and cold, and shoveling.

  12. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    Back, finally. The guy who yesterday got out of his car and yelled at my mom, then punched her car, when they were stopped at a red light after he tried mightily but unsuccessfully to stop her from getting over a lane and got flipped off for going out of his way to be a shitbag, then followed her all the way to my daughter’s school where she was dropping said daughter off to class, had his car parked outside the school (though he wasn’t visible) the next day (we’ve never seen it before and it didn’t seem like he knew the neighborhood streets, she said). So I was helping her file a police report.

    Any other suggestions?

    But…. and this is something I seriously sometimes feel ashamed about because I’ve never heard anyone talk about this in other than a shaming and/or patronizing way… I don’t care for kissing.

    I…enjoy kissing but often not for extended periods. In large part because I don’t breathe well through my nose.

    I don’t think you’re reading Rutee wrong, but I’m very, very wary in around this sort of topic. I’m so privileged in most things that I really struggle sometimes to come to terms with arguments about oppression.

    I haven’t followed this thread, and won’t, but I’ve seen the kind of argument described.

    I have the following thoughts:

    1) Stopping people from being subject to physical violence is legitimately an extra-high priority and should be a concern of everyone’s. If a case in which it genuinely matters comes up, people who are subject to physical violence can reasonably be said to have it worse than those who generally aren’t.
    2) This attitude and its cousins played a major role in developing the level of built-up anger and hurt that spilled out in those posts that everyone was so concerned about a few days ago, and figured prominently in the interactions that left me in a deep state of cognitive dissonance where I felt like Pharyngula SHOULD be a Safe Space to discuss my feelings but had learned painfully that it wasn’t, that kept it built up for years until it sort of spilled out when I was chemically disinhibited and reminded of it.
    3) I recall reading somewhere that at one point at least one medical association considered cocaine to be “non-addictive” because it didn’t exhibit the exact same dependence pattern as heroin. This absurdity is perhaps instructive.
    4) Aside from the issue in 1), it almost seems like having the working or “official” definition of “oppression” tailored to the specific harms and marginalizations your group experiences could be a kind of privilege in itself…a sort of lesser version of the way common white male concerns are usually recognized as “broadly relevant”.

    In the course of an online conversation you come to feel people are misreading you, what is a good way to determine if the fault lay with yourself for expressing yourself poorly, or with others (shoot, even a combo)?

    I’d be interested to know too. So far the message I tend to get usually seems to be “the fault is ALWAYS with you.” :/

  13. John Morales says

    auntbenjy, I hadn’t seen that before. From your link:

    Prominent climate change sceptic Viscount Christopher Monckton has demanded Victoria University rein in three professors who dismissed his views as rubbish.

    The formal complaint was met with hilarity by the accused academics yesterday, none of whom appeared concerned about disciplinary action.

    In a letter to Victoria University vice-chancellor Pat Walsh, the British aristocrat claimed the professors had been dishonest and brought the university into disrepute.

    He claimed professors James Renwick and David Frame, both accomplished climate scientists, had insulted him in the media by calling his views harmful with no scientific basis.

    “In saying I have ‘no training’ he [Professor Renwick] has lied. I have a Cambridge degree in classical architecture.”


    (What a clown)

  14. Orange Utan says


    “Lord” Monckton has been causing some hilarity in AustraliaNew Zealand.


  15. Ogvorbis, broken failure. says

    Hi, all.

    Sorry I’ve been absent.

    I needed a break. I promise I will try to be smart (and cowardly) and stay the fuck out of threads (like ‘those boys’ lives will be ruined! (not even going to read it)) that I think I might not be able to handle. I’ll try to be boring.

  16. dongiovanni says


    The Engineering department at the University of Auckland invited him to speak. I was disappoint, but the talk was rather amusing. We pointed out that a number of his graphs were very crudely drawn in MS paint(!) and I think we may have convinced the two people in the audience who were genuinely unsure, as the graph was on display for five minutes while he accused us of insulting him.

    The flat earth society was there as well, so it was a relatively amusing talk.

  17. cicely (mumblemumble-SomethingHalf-Witty-mumblemumble) says

    Denverly: Very glad to hear that Worrisome Mystery Pain didn’t turn out to be Incredibly Worrisome Serious Condition Requiring Drastic Measures! Now, if only I can get those tentacles unknotted….

    in other news:
    I was going to put-away the snow shovels for the season but we’re under a snowfall warning.

    Fixed that punctuation for ya.

    *wide-eyed with alarm*

    We were beginning to worry.
    I would describe you as more “Scratched and Dented” than “Broken”.
    And you are not a Failure!

  18. Pteryxx says

    thrashed and threadrupt, pardons.

    welcome back, Ogvorbis. <3

    Azkyroth @19: warn the school, too. Describe the car, the incidents, everything; give 'em a copy of the police report so they can call the cops directly he shows up again.

    re being misunderstood: only thing that's ever worked for me is leaving the conversation lie for several days and coming back to reread it later. If I've been an arse, it's usually pretty darn clear to me by then.

  19. Ogvorbis, broken failure. says

    I would describe you as more “Scratched and Dented” than “Broken”.

    Makes me sound like a gas dryer that’s on special this week.

    And you are not a Failure!

    Ah, but I know what is inside my head and just how I failed. A definite advantage.

  20. Ogvorbis, broken failure. says


    Seconding Pterryx. let the school know what is going on.

    And as for misunderstanding? My default position is that I have failed to express myself properly. Which really doesn’t work because that means that I feel obliged to restate my position. If I still feel like I am being misunderstood after the restate, I carefully read what I have actually written (both times) and try to figure out what I am actually saying. And if I still don’t understand, I usually just back off. No matter what I have to say, others will (usually) say it better than I ever could.

  21. cicely (mumblemumble-SomethingHalf-Witty-mumblemumble) says

    Makes me sound like a gas dryer that’s on special this week.

    A very high quality gas dryer! A bargain at thrice the price!

  22. Portia, worn out says

    Crip Dyke:
    All ready forty minutes early?! Way to go :D Hope you are having a few beverages and relaxing appropriately. *high five* for getting through the week.

    You’re not a coward
    Glad to see you.

    I won tickets on the radio once, and it was my first concert: Alice Cooper. I was obsessed with him then, when I was sixteen. Super fun. Glad the family had a good time : )

    I figured y’all would enjoy the offerings to Typos, plus I would’ve made it worse trying to fix it on my phone ^__^

    I am home now, exhausted.
    Rachel Maddow is going to have to do without me tomorrow, I fear.
    Sorry for making everyone needlessly jealous.
    I haz a sad, but my car is as yet unfixed, and I can’t justify the expense of renting a car for something that’s juts for fun like that.

    It’s sort of blending in with the rest of the sad I’ve got going on though. I feel like I’m sad most of the time nowadays. Blarg.

  23. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    …okay, the police report was filed online using the link for “Assault” on the “online police reports” page on the local police department’s webpage. When it was accepted, it was apparently with the code “SUSP – Suspicious Person”. Anyone know if that’s as inappropriate as I think it is?

  24. Portia, worn out says

    I don’t know what you mean by inappropriate?
    Technically the guy committed a battery, though.
    The difference is immaterial in this situation, though, I would think.

  25. says

    *HUGS* for Ogvorbis, and welcome back. You’re not a coward, that’s just plain smart.

    Hugs for Portia and Azkyroth, too.

    When it was accepted, it was apparently with the code “SUSP – Suspicious Person”. Anyone know if that’s as inappropriate as I think it is?

    Not sure why it would be; a person doing that sort of thing definitely fits the category of ‘suspicious behaviour’ insofar as that means ‘likely to be involved in something violent, and therefore should possibly be investigated if violence is committed by someone described similarly. There may be information I missed, though.

  26. Portia, worn out says

    I’ll try to be boring.

    Like I try to be nice. :)

    Awwww. :) That makes me want to hug you :)

    (Wass “WB”?)

  27. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    It sounds like the sort of report you’d file if you saw someone snooping around your gate. A crime was actually committed here.

  28. Portia, worn out says

    I don’t have enough ‘w’ for the length of “aw” that went through my mind.
    I love it.

  29. Ogvorbis, broken failure. says

    John Morales:

    So we’ll both be trying? That sounds accurate for me.

    Hi, Portia.

    John, did I ever tell you about my uncle, Euripides?

  30. Portia, worn out says


    I wouldn’t stress too much about the label. It probably covers a broader swath of behaviors than it sounds like.

  31. thunk, warm air advection says

    well I’m also threadrupt as yay. it’s a moderately quiet period in school work..

    So I have time for the daily agonizing self-introspection thing again. it’s annoying, because then I can’t help like feeling like shit. and yuck.

  32. chigau (違う) says

    Welcome back!
    (I was about to come looking for you.)

  33. Portia, worn out says

    Hey thunk, good to see you.

    I empathize with the Introspection Messiness. I’m sorry : ( *hugs*?

  34. thunk, warm air advection says

    yes. the agonization is mainly due to a disconnect between the way I perceive my gender most of the time and how I want to perceive it.

    Both of these viewpoints are valid, I just felt the really relic need to choose between one of two binary options. which is flawed for eleventy bajillion reasons, as you all know. Also, because stereotypical feminine traits felt a bit weird to me, and I couldn’t quite decide whether it was due to being unused to it, or just being too cis. Which is flawed too, because gender expression =! identity.

    so yes, I know why I beat myself up, and I know it’s fundamentally silly. :)

  35. says

    Good to see you again.
    You would have to try mighty hard to be boring.

    I am glad your mystery pain turned out to be not too bad. Hopefully you will overcome it with quickness and be back to normal soon.

  36. chigau (違う) says

    Have another *hug*.
    I won’t offer advice other than a grandmotherly “It will get better.”

  37. rq says

    Good morning!
    *hugs* for Portia and not seeing Rachel Maddow :( I haz a sad for you.
    *megahugs* for Ogvorbis, who may be dented but less than broken and definitely not a failure, and who would have a hard time being boring.
    round of *hugs* for anyone else who wants or needs, they’re free for today only! (May be replaced with gesture of affection of choice – or drink/cocktail of choice, but then Tony has to be involved since my repertoire is limited.)

    That label covers also the fact that he seems to be lurking around the school/engaging in stalkerish behaviour, which makes him a very suspicious person. It’s a heads-up for the police to be aware of the kind of back-gate snooping that you seem to have in mind, even though it comes after the fact of a real violent event.
    Also, what Pteryxx said about warning the school and giving them the information.
    I hope things are resolved soon – *hugs* for you, too?

  38. says

    Don’t be sad for Portia. See, she’s totes gonna drive down to Pensacola to pick me up, and we’re going to drive cross country, touching on as many Hordeling home towns as we can before we see Rachel Maddow (hopefully she’ll be wherever we land).

  39. rq says

    Because that’s just so much more convenient and less time-consuming than just going to the show? ;) A heck of a lot more fun, sounds like… I want to come too! As long as you travel the world afterward. Because we’ll all write super-blogs about our travels and make sooooo much money off our writing.


    I don’t like the idea of patented human genes. At least, not the already-naturally-occurring ones.
    And another reason gay marriage should be legal. Or at the very least, gay relationships more widely accepted as perfectly normal and competent to make decisions for each other.

  40. says

    Good morning

    Just glad you’re ok (for a given vaue of “ok”)


    If he’s been a good kid, I really hope the system will give him a similar chance. But getting kicked out of uni, that just sucks.

    Yeah, it sucks, and I’m sorry for him and especially for his parents, but I also think that the college did everything right.
    You can’t have students on campus who scare other students to death “as a joke”. The young woman he threatened shouldn’t have to deal with running into him on campus and in the dorm. I’m damn well not going to abandon my stance on those things because I really like the “kid” who got in trouble.
    I hope he can get to another university, should he decide that he still wants to do something with his life. He wasn’t the most ambitioned student before, to put it mildly, and it doesn’t seem like this incident shook him up à la “fuck I need to change something”.
    I said it before and I’ll say it again: “boys will be boys” is also a hate crime against boys. Because some day they’ll just behave the ame way that got excused all their lives and suddenly they find themselves in a situation when somebody sensibly says “no, unacceptable”. And then they feel oh so unjustly treated, probably by the evil feminazis.

  41. rq says

    re: trebuchets for children
    Interestingly enough, by pure coincidence, the children’s program usually on Saturday mornings (the educational one) has a segment on today about medieval weapons, including a short lesson on how to make a bow. It’s not quite a trebuchet or catapult, but it’s a start!

  42. rq says

    I completely agree – the university did everything right, and I really think that someone’s past behaviour (or other ‘favourable’ characteristic) shouldn’t determine the punishment they get for a certain thing/fuckup now, esp. something as serious as threatening people with [fake] weapons just for fun. I just think that his past behaviour, combined with his future behaviour, should work in his favour to show that he is capable of learning from his mistakes (and I would extend this benefit to absolutely anyone in a similar situation, which I know doesn’t always occur in real life).
    It’s a shame the incident doesn’t seem to have shaken him into introspection; in my brother’s case, seeing as how he missed out on two incredible professionally-related summer jobs in the States and (I think) an internship in the States, it was a huge kick in the ass to get some of his act together.

  43. rq says

    I’ve always thought of it as a combination of that happy-pounce that cats do when they’re happy sometimes, and a regular ol’ hug.

  44. says

    I feel silly.
    I should have expressed myself better. I can figure out the “kitty pounce meets hug”, but what I am curious about is where it came from (and who created it)? In my haste to make my comment, I failed to ensure I asked the proper question.
    (Note to self: phrase questions such that answers I receive are what I seek:: this is nothing against you rq)

    I continue to be pissed off at the asshole who manipulated and violated Ogvorbis. To see such a good man refer to himself as a broken failure is frustrating.
    Ogvorbis- from what you have said in the time I have been here, I see no broken failure. I hope one day you can see what I-and others-see in you.

    Portia or Dalillama:
    Any chance either of you are awake? I haz a question to send via the emailz.

  45. says


    I just think that his past behaviour, combined with his future behaviour, should work in his favour to show that he is capable of learning from his mistakes (and I would extend this benefit to absolutely anyone in a similar situation, which I know doesn’t always occur in real life).

    Absolutely. Nobody wins if he never gets professional training or a degree and stays at home until his parents kcik him out and remains on welfare for the rest of his life.
    Dunno if he’s going to face criminal charges as well (or a bill from the police).
    It’s his job to figure out that the consequences are those of his behaviour and not of people being unfair to him.

  46. rq says

    See, that’s what I thought you were asking, but seeing as how the Lounge is always quiet this time of day/Saturday, I felt I should make some noise. :)
    I’m not offended that you don’t want to hear my answers. (They’re not the right ones.) :)

    I continue to be pissed off at the asshole who manipulated and violated Ogvorbis. To see such a good man refer to himself as a broken failure is frustrating.
    Ogvorbis- from what you have said in the time I have been here, I see no broken failure. I hope one day you can see what I-and others-see in you.

    Repeated for truth-value and support.

  47. John Morales says


    where does “pouncehug” come from?

    I associate it with David Marjanović.

  48. DLC says

    Late in, but still: Ogvorbis : keep plugging along old chap. we’re cheering you on. Go at the best pace you feel comfortable with.

  49. opposablethumbs says

    Denverly – glad to hear it’s hormonal and no what-the-heck is involved. Thank you for passing on the news (and I hope the pain is vanquished).
    Yay Ogvorbis!!!! You’re back!!!!! I’m glad you’re back!!!! I may have to engage in a very un-Brit-like pouncehug, doncher know. (I’m very glad you’re back)
    Portia I’m so sorry if you don’t make it to the talk. Hope you get another opportunity before too long (and sympathies for the whole feeling-down-all-the-time-just-now thing. I can sympathise :-(
    hugs to thunk. Glad you’re here. People here are the best, like you are.
    Azkyroth, hope the school pay attention. It’s good that they should take this seriously and I hope the police do too.
    ::waves:: to rq and parrowing and Giliell and FossilFishy and Tony and chigau and cicely and Dalillama and Pteryxx and and and actually there are too many of you. ::waves:: to Horde.

  50. Parrowing says

    *Waves* back to opposablethumbs


    I’m sorry that happened to your mom and daughter, Azkyroth. What an unpleasant and creepy asshole that guy is.


    Don’t worry, rq, it wasn’t the discussion here that made me feel bad. The thoughts just popped into my head and I realized that I was almost certain to get a different response here than I would anywhere else. I was right :). Thanks to you and FossilFishy.

    And speaking of, that situation you described FossilFishy seems very familiar (I don’t mind it but after a LOT of experience, I’ve realized that pot just doesn’t do much for me, so I don’t seek it out anymore or partake often). I’ve been you in that situation and I’ve also been the one watching as others put someone else in that position, wanting to say something but feeling afraid to and not knowing whether I should. I feel more confident about it now, but should the situation ever arise again, I’ll remember my Fishy friend and feel even better about saying no if I want to or supporting others who say no.


    Nice to see you again, Ogvorbis :)


    I’m sorry that your car wasn’t able to be fixed in time, Portia :( . Hopefully there will be another opportunity for you to see Rachel Maddow speak. I’m also sorry to hear you’ve been feeling sad lately. *hugs* and *bunnies*


    I’m glad that your test came back normal, Denverley. I hope you are able to figure out what’s causing the pain and are able to manage it soon.

  51. opposablethumbs says

    Argh. That scumbag forced-birther is sliming up the Thunderdome again, all happy to use Gosnell as a big “gotcha”. Ugh.

  52. Portia, worn out says


    It’s 6:40 am here. I’ve been up since about 3:30 am yesterday.
    I’m going to bed now.
    The conference was awesome.
    So was the housefire that kept us all up all night, in a different way.
    (No one was hurt, but I did feel sad for the dog that was running around yipping at us, really confused about what was happening to her home).

    Ok, I’m going to try to pass out now. Will catch up with y’all in a bit.

  53. Beatrice (looking for a happy thought) says

    Eeeee! I don’t want to highjack thread dedicated to crowepps, so I’ll enthusiastically wave to Algernon here, in hopes she takes a look in the Lounge.

    Good to read you, I hope you’ll decide to hang around again!

    Also, hugs for Portia, I’m sorry you missed Rachel Maddow.

    Damn, the situation your mother is in sounds a bit scary. Better let the school now that some suspicious and dangerous guy is hanging around. *hugs*

  54. carlie says

    D’oh! Right, Portia deals with other people’s fires, not having those of her own.

    Also very glad to see Algernon post.

  55. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    @ Azkyroth

    “SUSP – Suspicious Person”

    I used to be a 911 dispatcher. Suspicious person has a particular connotation: it lets the cops know that the intentions of the person in question are unknown. It’s used differently in different departments I imagine (I only know how it was used in 2 places, my work and one other), but where I was it wasn’t a trivial thing. The officers are actually more at risk when they don’t know what they’re trying to address, so trying to put it in a more specific category when you’re really not sure ends up possibly misleading the officers into thinking they know how to address something. That doesn’t typically go well. It’s better that they know up front that it’s a situation where the intentions of the person in question are unknown.

    Plus, the other thing is that if you did it online, there’s not the back & forth with someone who’s been doing it for a while. I imagine their system defaults to “not sure what’s happening” much more than a 911 operator would do.

    Finally, the police officers in any city nowadays have computers in their cars, and if they don’t (tiny town, on horse patrol, what-evs), there are dispatchers radioing information. The complete info will get read. If the dispatcher is anything like the super-competent people with whom I worked, they also mentally juggle different things of different severity and different immediacy. They’ll do a good job of bringing priorities around.


    Ah, but I know what is inside my head and just how I failed. A definite advantage.

    Oh, I know that one. But you’re wrong. You’re a great person. *I’m* the one that more appropriately analyzes my success or failure than outsiders analyze me, based on my interior secret failings.

    Crip Dyke: More Broken Than Thou

    I would like to obsess about how truly, truly awful I am, but maybe instead we could each have some chocolate and try to laugh at how our brains hate us. :P

  56. Beatrice (looking for a happy thought) says

    I would like to obsess about how truly, truly awful I am, but maybe instead we could each have some chocolate and try to laugh at how our brains hate us. :P

    *dumps an enormous chocolate bar in front of Crip Dyke and Ogvorbis and all the rest of us horrible awful folks to share*

  57. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    No Maddow & now a fire?

    Crud, Portia! Let us know if you need the Horde to do something.

  58. Minnie The Finn, qui devient bientôt vierge says

    *tries to pouncehug Ogvorbis but misses*


    Hi all, I have a lovely basket full of fresh hugs for all in need. Spring in Finland is just around the corner (I saw it crouching there earlier) and next summer’s status has been upgraded from ‘never gonna happen’ to ‘plausible’. So, yay, I guess. Despite the sad news about Joan.

  59. says

    I am not a fan of people who use open threads to write an online book about an issue that is important to them and since this concerns clinical research and is a bit off-topic for this blog, I will refrain from doing so myself. If you care about the ethical conduct of human subjects research and/or the research reputation of the University of Minnesota, however, the case of Dan Markingson and a current petition to Governor Dayton for an independent investigation of psychiatric research misconduct at the U of MN may be of interest to you. It is a disturbing case getting international attention and it needs transparency if the U’s reputation is to be upheld.

    Here is the link to the petition: http://tinyurl.com/markingsonpetition

    Here is a link to a blog post (my blog) with additional supporting material about the case: http://tinyurl.com/markingson

  60. Pteryxx says

    following up on #80: yes it’s a real issue, not just someone blog spamming. With a friend, the mother of Dan Markingson (the patient who committed suicide) started a Change.org petition to demand an investigation into U of MN.

    PZ signed the petition last month, but the discussion didn’t mention the consent forms or financial conflicts of interest: http://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/2013/03/14/call-for-an-accounting

    To be fair, he might not be permitted to bring up those aspects himself, if he even knew. The articles I linked below have come out since then.

    Direct link to Change.org petition:


    New questions about identical patient consent forms – MinnPost

    Last month, University of Minnesota bioethicist Dr. Carl Elliott, who has written about the Markingson case extensively, raised concerns in his blog, Fear and Loathing in Bioethics, that the “evaluation to consent” form found in Markingon’s file appears to have been filled out in identical ways to the consent form in another patient’s file.

    If the forms were filled out identically, it would mean that the patients had not been individually evaluated to determine whether they were mentally capable of giving their consent to be in the study. Markingon’s mother, Mary Weiss, has long contended that her son was incapable at the time of giving informed consent. Indeed, in the days leading up to his enrollment in the study, he had been found repeatedly incompetent of consenting to treatment.

    Summary of the investigation as U MN’s top attorney leaves for a new job – MinnPost

    St. Paul native Markingson stabbed himself to death in 2004 while enrolled in a U of M clinical trial of the antipsychotic Seroquel. His mother had objected vehemently and repeatedly to his participation, insisting that he was suicidal and incompetent to give informed consent. The researchers conducting the trial, U of M bioethicist Carl Elliott wrote, had financial incentives for enrolling patients.

    U of M bioethics professor Carl Elliott has written extensively about the case, on his blog, Fear and Loathing in Bioethics, in national publications and in his most recent book, “White Coat, Black Hat: Adventures on the Dark Side of Medicine.”

    After his first major piece was published in Mother Jones, a group of faculty asked the university Board of Regents to order an independent investigation. Two years ago after the regents declined, Rotenberg controversially addressed the U of M’s Academic Tenure and Freedom Committee, asking whether the faculty had a role in “addressing factually incorrect attacks on particular university faculty research activities?”

  61. says

    Thanks Pteryxx (#81). I don’t even work for the U, but hesitated posting anything on my own blog given the aggressiveness with which the U has gone after critics on this topic, so certainly understand that others need to be even more circumspect.

    For me, as someone who works in the rare disease patient community, this has much further reaching implications. We very much recognize the value of clinical research and have been at the forefront of advocating and recruiting for studies in rare disorders. If the protections meant to ensure patient safety are missing before, during and after participation, however, I’m not sure it is even ethical to encourage participation (and I’m positive the U of MN is not alone in this–just getting the lion’s share of exposure due to this case). Particularly concerned about the ‘sovereign immunity’ stance taken by the U and upheld by the courts, as that means no person who has been harmed as a victim of research misconduct at the U of MN has standing to seek relief in court. How can this be? At the very least, this aspect of participation needs to be clearly spelled out in the informed consent process. Imagine how that would read on a consent form and how honesty about this would impact recruitment. This is a bad situation that needs attention over and above justice for Dan Markingson.

  62. says

    I’m awake now, anyway. Feel free to send me an email, if the question still pertains.
    RE: Pouncehugs, I’m not certain what the origin is, but I’ve been seeing them for as long as I can recall on the interwebs; it’s not new, I don’t think.

  63. Hekuni Cat, MQG says

    Crip Dyke – I hope all goes well with your exams. *hugs and chocolate* Also, Will at Skepchick was extremely helpful. Thank you so much for the suggestion.

    cicely – *pouncehug* Congratulations on acquiring your new wheels.

    Are the players in your D&D campaign now broke? My players never seem to keep money (of any amount, large or small) in their pockets for long. Of course, I have the exact same problem when I’m a player. :D

    Caine – I’m so sorry your pancreas is giving you more trouble. *lots of hugs*

    chigau – I hope you have recovered from your root canal trauma. *hugs*

    Obvorbis – *gentle hugs* I’m glad you’re back; I was worried. You are definitely not a coward.

    Denverly – I’m glad your mystery pain isn’t a serious problem. Feel better.

    Azkyroth – *hugs* for your mom, your daughter, and you. Please take care.

    Portia – *hugs and chocolate* May you live in less interesting times for a while.

    thunk – *hugs* I’m glad you’re back.

    Tony – Pouncehugs weren’t created; they evolved. Cats were probably involved though.

    algernon – *waves*

    Pteryxx – *anklehugs* for general awesomeness. I really appreciate how often you provide context and links.

  64. says

    Pouncehugs weren’t created; they evolved. Cats were probably involved though.

    Something tickling at the back of my brain makes me think that visual media were involved; possibly a comic(s), deviantart, something of that nature.

  65. opposablethumbs says

    Is giving someone a pouncehug the same as glomping them? If not, what are the differences?

    Do both feet/back paws have to be off the ground at the same time?

  66. says

    “I’m very concerned about this measure; I am concerned about where it may go once it gets to the Senate floor and what might happen in the House. This idea of background checks is very concerning given the fact that the United States military has been increasingly showing hostility toward evangelicals and Catholics as being somehow threats to national security and people that need to be watched.

    “Well, what does that have to do with gun control? Well, what happens if all the sudden you are identified as an evangelical, bible-believing fundamentalist and the government decides you’ve got to be put on a watch list? Part of the provisions of this background check is kind of a system where if a caution comes up when they put your name in, you don’t get a chance to buy a gun.”

    That’s Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, coming up with yet another bizarre reason to be against gun control legislation, while simultaneously be for buying moar guns.

    One wonders if Perkins knows anything about the heavily evangelical Christian influence in the Air Force, as just one example of many facts that would smash his factoids like Thor’s drunken hammer. Can a hammer be drunk? I’d like to think so.

    World Nut Daily picked up the nonsense from Perkins and is spreading it around. Since World Nut Daily is one of Michele Bachmann’s trusted sources, I think we have not seen the end of this conspiracy theory.

  67. says

    America’s most religious metro area is Provo, Utah.

    No, Provo, that is not a distinction of which you should be proud. Mormons being proud in the Deseret News.

    The Provo-Orem area, an educational and family-centered mecca for Mormon families, is the most religious of 189 metropolitan areas in the U.S., according to the results of a Gallup Poll released Friday.

    From the Gallup Poll link:

    Provo, Utah, tops the list of America’s most religious metros, according to survey results recently released by the Gallup Organization. More than three-quarters of residents in this metro reported that they are “very religious.” Three of the top five most religious metros are in Alabama — Montgomery, Birmingham, and Huntsville. Jackson, Mississippi, also ranks among the top five….

  68. says

    Patriarch Kirill, head of the Russian Orthodox Church, is afraid of women. Well, he has a point. Women will likely be one of the forces exposing his patriarchy as a fraud.

    Kirill said Tuesday that feminism was a “very dangerous” phenomenon offering an illusion of freedom to women who should focus on their families and children.”

    More blathering from the cowering Kirill:

    I find very dangerous this phenomenon, which is called feminism, because feminist organizations proclaim a pseudo-freedom of women that should in the first place be manifested outside marriage and outside the family.

    Man turns his sight outward — he should work, make money. While a woman is always focused inwards towards her children, her home. If this exceptionally important role of a woman is destroyed, everything will be destroyed as a consequence — family and, if you wish, the homeland.

  69. says

    Pat Robertson thinks everyone, but especially leaders in the USA, should abandon all efforts focused on a Middle East peace process.

    It seems our new Secretary of State, John Kerry, is inviting the “wrath of Almighty God to fall on this nation” by working for peace in the Middle East. There will be divine retribution.

    I think this is headed for disaster for the United States. God says, they divided my land, there is something about dividing God’s land, he said this is my land, I gave it to Abraham and his descendants and I don’t want it taken away from them and Jerusalem is the eternal capital of Israel. For the United States to get into a deal where they’re trying to split Jerusalem and take it away from the Israelis and split up their capital, huge mistake. You are asking for the wrath of Almighty God to fall on this nation and when it falls it won’t be fun, it won’t be fun. We should do everything we can to restrain our leaders from this course of folly and it is and it is a course of folly and it will result in terrible suffering for people in the United States.

  70. Esteleth, the most colossal nerd on Pharyngula says

    Second-degree burns on four fingertips. Owie. :(

  71. says

    New batteries in The Behemoth as of yesterday.

    Need to go grocery shopping — partner is coming up for a few days. And crap… I don’t have a human to drag with me.

  72. Portia, worn out says

    I’m up too now (Yeah, 2pm, feels good :) )

    I’m sorry for the ambiguous way I worded the comment in my sleep-deprived haze. Someone else’s house burned up last night. Mine is just dandy. (Though I am more cautious than ever now about not running dishwasher or dryer when I am absent or sleeping). You all are so wonderful and kind and compassionate to immediately offer help at the first hint of distress. *pile of hugs*

    Also thanks for all the sympathy about missing Rachel. I bet she’s knocking it outta the park right as I type : ) Someday the chance will come again. It’s just as well I was planning to not go, at this point, because without any sleep I would have been miserable.

    Ooowwww… Chocolate milk with a straw? (It’s chocolate you don’t have to pick up).

    Holy crap. I got nothin’ else.

  73. carlie says

    Northeast Pharyngulites – Roy Zimmerman is doing a concert at a library in Middleburgh, NY on Wed. May 1 at 7pm. Anyone interested in a meetup?

  74. yazikus says

    What I don’t get is that many women (from what I have heard) are drawn to orthodoxy because it doesn’t disappear women the way other christian faiths do. Why he would want to alienate women is beyond me.

  75. rq says

    I hate weddings. Religious ones, that is.
    And I also know why god is so scarce in the third world: he keeps popping in to Catholic weddings to spread his blessings around (today, you are even closer to god!) and make sure people are discussing the fertility of the now-wife and the Fruit of Love that are Children in Marriage (marriage makes people
    more equal (I admit, I snorted out loud at this point, but quietly)!).
    (It was a nice, pretty, artful church and the music was great but it was the first time I actually made a point (to myself) not to participate in any of the responses. It was odd but strangely liberating. And the children behaved.)
    And then the groom’s father made a very distasteful, sexist joke that everyone thought was funny when opening the official portion of after-church ceremonies (May your wife be a snake only three days in the year! May your husband only think of other girls/women only seven day a year, and only in his dreams! *this is me retching on the inside*).
    And I realized I really, really don’t like how I look right now, and I hate the clothes I have available for such occasions but I have no money to buy something all-purpose yet decent, never mind the amazing, bargain, all-purpose dress shoes I lost back in the fall (good for choir concerts and special occasions with dancing!).
    I guess it wasn’t a great day. And I can’t shake that feeling of an imminent *crasssshhhhh*.


    Glad the fire was dealt with well, I’m glad there were no casualties, and I’m glad you’re ok! *hugs*

    *hugs* and finger-free snacks for Esteleth, I hope healing is quick!
    *roundofhugs* for everyone else.

  76. Beatrice (looking for a happy thought) says


    Haven’t been to many weddings, only two, but it looks like a lot of weddings are just expensive exercises in sexism and misogyny.

  77. Portia, worn out says


    Lotsa hugs. I hate hate hate losing things that I like. I know that feel. I’m really sorry you don’t feel good. I think you’re really great, and I have all these hugs here if you’d like one.

  78. opposablethumbs says

    Ow, Esteleth. Sorry to hear about the fingers, hope you have plenty of ice to distract your nerves. Second degree? Shit.

  79. says

    Barry Smitherman, a Republican who oversees the Texas oil and gas industry tweeted an image listing the GOP senators who voted with Democrats to go ahead and have a debate on gun control legislation. The image is illustrated with a depiction of a noose with a “treason” label.

    So, yes, some Texas Republicans think that merely agreeing to debate, (let along vote on), gun control legislation is a hanging offense.

    For those not following this story, Republicans had previously filibustered a proposal to move gun control legislation out of committee and onto the floor for debate. Using this maneuver they wanted to prevent the legislation from even being put to a vote.


  80. says

    More Republican nonsense surrounding the issue of gun control:

    Rep. Jeff Duncan (R-S.C.), who enjoys an A rating from the National Rifle Association, took to Facebook on Thursday to warn Americans of the “evil consequences” of a national gun registry, comparing the dangers of expanded background checks to the Rwandan genocide….

    Read about the Rwandan genocide, the Hutu and Tutsi tribes. Read that all Tutsi tribe members were required to register their address with the Hutu government and that this database was used to locate Tutsi for slaughter at the hands of the Hutu. (Since the government had the names and addresses of nearly all Tutsis living in Rwanda (remember, each Rwandan had an identity card that labeled them Tutsi, Hutu, or Twa) the killers could go door to door, slaughtering the Tutsis.

    Not with firearms, mind you, but with machetes.

    I use this example to warn that national databases can be used with evil consequences.

  81. says

    Eden Foods, the “oldest natural and organic food company in North America,” doesn’t like birth control and they don’t want contraception covered by insurance that they, as employers, offer to their employees. They had their lawyers file a complaint that included the company’s belief that “these procedures almost always involve immoral and unnatural practices.”

    That is, Eden Foods — an organic food company with no shortage of liberal customers — has quietly pursued a decidedly right-wing agenda, suing the Obama administration for exemption from the mandate to cover contraception for its employees under the Affordable Care Act. In court filings, Eden Foods, represented by the conservative Thomas More Law Center, alleges that its rights have been violated under the First Amendment, the Religious Freedom Restoration Act and the Administrative Procedure Act.

    More here: http://www.salon.com/2013/04/11/organic_eden_foods_quiet_right_wing_agenda/

  82. Ogvorbis, broken failure. says

    Made bean soup today.

    We found some actual country ham — the real stuff!

    I made it with navy beans, roasted yellow sweet pepper, roasted onion, roasted garlic, and diced country ham. For those who haven’t had country ham, it has a truly unique and unusual and unusual flavour. Good stuff.

    And I smoked a Gurkha Beauty. Wow. Good stuff.

  83. cicely (mumblemumble-SomethingHalf-Witty-mumblemumble) says

    *hugs* for thunk.

    *waveback* to opposablethumbs.

    *hugs* for Portia.


    Hekuni Cat: *pouncehugback*.
    Took the new wheels out for a roll today; a much easier wheelchairing experience than the old chair! Plus, the old chair is now in the possession of one of my SCA acquaintances, so it’s good all around.

    Second-degree burns on four fingertips. Owie. :(

    What happened?

  84. thunk, warm air advection says

    hia all. I feel much better today, it seems.

    It’s been a really good hair day, among other things. Just the minor accomplishments in life.

  85. The Mellow Monkey says

    Cracked seems to have hit a new low with Adam Tod Brown’s weird list about how we shouldn’t feel sorry for some types of “victim.” Apparently, heckling Daniel Tosh when he shows up to do an unannounced set is exactly morally equivalent to him joking about the audience gang raping you.

    And then when I made the ever so terrible faux pas of remarking on Facebook that people should be called out when they’re that hateful, a friend (the same one who told me the rape in the first episode of Game of Thrones was okay because “Drogo wasn’t trying to be a jerk!”) got all FREEZE PEACH! on me and wanted to have a nice logical discussion about how necessary it is to make terrible jokes about rape and to not be swayed by emotional reactions.


  86. birgerjohansson says

    Hugs to all of you who want it.
    … … … … … … … … … … … …
    An evangelical Republican who died recently once got disenchanted with the Bush administration after it turned out the whole “compassionate conservatism” thing was just a PR trick.

    I have tried finding more information about the subject, but a good starting point would be remembering the name of the guy…I have spent two hours trying to locate articles about his passing away with no success. My interest is based on the inherent conflict between cleptocracy advocates and religious Republicans (who sometimes may have some vestigal social conscience).
    … … … … … … … … … …
    Gagarin was one of those “heroes of the Soviet Union” who actually deserved to be called a hero. A symphatic person who would use his prestige to help ordinary people who wrote to him about their troubles.

  87. rowanvt says

    I have a foster kitten! His name is Parsnip and he is 2 days old. And I’m freakin’ worried about him because he can’t pee well even with tons of stimulation. I’m gonna take him to the E.C. after another try and have them drain his bladder with a syringe so he can start ’empty’ and see if that helps. Hopefully he needs a little more time to mature and will be okay. :/

  88. cicely (mumblemumble-SomethingHalf-Witty-mumblemumble) says

    Tentacles crossed for little Parsnip.

  89. Portia, worn out says


    When your hair is part of your gender expression, and that’s what’s’ giving you consternation, I don’t think it’s a small thing at all. *high five* :)

  90. thunk, warm air advection says

    thanks, portia.

    things seem to be settled down. never mind the moderate amount of homework.

    Hugs to all who want them. And may your days be as fabulous as mine.

  91. Portia, worn out says

    *scoops up hugs, snuggles into ’em*

    Moderate amount of homework sounds like a manageable amount. Glad it’s not crushing.

    Also glad to hear you sounding cheerful, happy for your good day.

  92. ednaz says

    Hello All! Caught up to 110


    Took the new wheels out for a roll today; a much easier wheelchairing experience than the old chair!

    I haz a happy!

    I was relieved when I realized you were working at a fire.

    I haz a sad, but my car is as yet unfixed, and I can’t justify the expense of renting a car for something that’s juts for fun like that.

    Why? I don’t know anyone who has too much fun. You work very hard, you deserve some enjoyment.
    Also, a Rachel Maddow speech is fun AND educational. I hope the next time you get a chance to see her, you are not exhausted and are able to throw any guilt(?) out the window. : )

    *unsolicited advice* I throw guilt out the window. When it goes through the screen, it seperates into thousands of tiny pieces and is dissolved by the sunlight (this works in moonlight also).
    *unsolicited advice*

    Yay! You are back! : D

    You are
    not boring
    not scratched and dented
    not a coward
    not a failure.

    You are a kind and compassionate person. You are helpful. You share your knowledge with others. You make remarks that make me snort pop out of my nose. You tell wonderful stories about your family.

    We are lucky to have you. ♥

    chigau (違う)
    Have another *hug*.
    I won’t offer advice other than a grandmotherly “It will get better.”


    chigau (違う)
    Is your tooth pain gone? Are you feeling O.K.??

    Sorry for a lousy day. ) :
    Sending a *hug*.

    Is it O.K. if I send you a *pouncehug*? : )

    Hope to catch up some more. : )

  93. Hekuni Cat, MQG says

    Esteleth – Ouch! I hope your fingers heal quickly.

    rowanvt – Good luck with little Parsnip.


    Is giving someone a pouncehug the same as glomping them? If not, what are the differences?

    Do both feet/back paws have to be off the ground at the same time?

    In my head, it is more like the way Tigger tackles Winnie the Pooh in that overly enthusiastic and very happy fashion, so the back and front paws can be off the ground (and ultimately on the person in question) at the same time.

  94. rowanvt says

    Parsnip pulled a ‘white coat syndrome’ on me and 15 minutes before the vet came in (long wait, but I was a good client and was patient) he decided that, with stimulation, he was going to pee A LOT. His bladder is still quite big, but now I know he can actually release urine in a reasonable amount. Vet did an ultrasound to make sure there was nothing wonky inside (for free, wonderful vet!) in part because he has some edema under the skin on his belly. But she thinks that might be due to the super watery formula his old owner was feeding him.

    So, so far things are looking good even though I get to do stimulations every 20 minutes until his bladder is a normal size. No sleep for meeeeeeeeeee!

  95. chigau (違う) says

    My tooth-pain is gone because antibiotics + root-canal.
    scientific medicine ROCKS

  96. rowanvt says

    He urinated a bit more for me just now before eating. Very happy, and he eats like a champ. I shall be a terrible person and photograph him at his next feed.

    He’s a weird looking one. He has markings like a hooded rat!

  97. ednaz says

    I am so sorry for what you and your family were put through.
    I hope the police get to work quickly to resolve this to your satisfaction.
    Hope you are feeling O.K.

    Minnie The Finn
    Spring in Finland sounds SO nice. : )
    May I take a hug from the basket?

    Will check out your link.

    I hope you are feeling better.
    *very gentle pat on the shoulder*

    OUCH! and I’m sorry!

    Yay! for new batteries!

    Mellow Monkey
    I am sorry you’re being subjected to jerky people. : (
    Can I send you a beverage?

    So glad Parsnip is getting such excellent care from you.

    So, so far things are looking good even though I get to do stimulations every 20 minutes until his bladder is a normal size. No sleep for meeeeeeeeeee!

    Goodness! How long will that be?

  98. rowanvt says

    @Ednaz, probably just through most of tonight. The formula his old owner was giving him was so thin the vet thinks he’s hypoproteinemic and that’s resulting in some edema on his tummy. No free fluid though. But with proper nutrition his bladder is gonna being able to do its work better so it’s going to fill faster. But he should balance out pretty quick. I’m glad I have Tues/Wed off to catch up on sleep.

  99. chigau (違う) says

    We can always haz rum.
    [sometimes it tastes a bit like beer or wine]

    I wish that everynewbe who skips to the bottom to comment on a thread (without reading the other comments) is greeted by something like rowanvt’s #121.

  100. rowanvt says

    What, Chigau, so they can have a giant moment of “what the fuck sort of conversation did I just walk into”? XD

  101. ednaz says

    I know a woman who does not believe in atheists.

    She says things like – ‘They say they’re atheist, but they’re really agnostic.’
    These are people she knows and likes and works with.

    The other day she said – ‘These people say they’re atheists, but they still go to funerals.’
    She rolled her eyes like it was a big joke.

    I said to her – ‘Wether they’re atheist or not, they have had a loved one die. They want to pay their respects and say goodbye.’

    She said – ‘Oh…yeah.’

    I don’t know if I made a dent or if she just didn’t want to hear any more about it from me. But I was glad I said my piece.

    Baby steps.

  102. rowanvt says

    Sometimes I have to laugh at how I must sound to others. There are days at work where it seems all I do is hold penises (for catheters), palpate testicles (checking for cancer), clean vulvas and stick things (thermometers, my gloved fingers….) up butts.

    On animals. Which makes it better, I guess? But geez we are so inappropriate at work on those days. “All I’ve done all day is play with penises! Why can’t I get butt duty???”

    I get strange when I get tired. It’s only going to get worse.

  103. chigau (違う) says

    rowanvt #126
    How many times have we seen someone read the OP, skip to the bottom and post a topic that was dealt with in 200 comments yesterday?

    He urinated a bit more for me just now before eating.

    By itself should prevent anyone from commenting before they read the other comments.

  104. ednaz says

    So glad to hear your good news! Especially being able to catch up on Tues/Wed. : )

    chigau (違う)
    Hee hee! : D

  105. rowanvt says

    Maybe a new rule: Every 10 comments there shall be an out of context comment about foster kitten care that doesn’t mention the word “kitten”. :P

    It would be nice to not get to rehash all the things previously said with person#9684316879864687341.

  106. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    Glad to hear you’re feeling better chiqau. Though I must say: Science, puleeez! It was the sacrifice I did for you of a Humboldt squid under the gibbous moon using the widdershins ass of a jawbone that did the trick. ;)
    Oh hanky-hell Esteleth, your tale of digit immolation had me doing the squidgy dance. Have this soothing balm made from only slightly used squid guts.

    Glad to hear you’re doing well today thunk. Been missing you round these parts.

    Ogvorbis, there’s no shame in taking all the time away that you need. There’s nothing I can say that hasn’t been said before, but I’m going to try it anyway:

    You are a kind, compassionate, intelligent, valued member of this community. A world filled of people like you, people who do good, who care and try their best despite the evil that’s been visited upon them would be a world vastly improved over the one that is. One generation of people like you and the cycle of abuse would slam to a stop so suddenly that history would ring with it for millennia.

    Thank you for being who you are.

    Thank you for sharing your story.

    Thank you for giving me hope. If only I could return the favour.

  107. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    Huh. Okay, my senior project group is not gonna like me for this. My calculations suggest the way we decided we weren’t going to make a scraped surface heat exchanger might be better after all.


  108. ednaz says

    Since your post was serious, I’ll be innapropriate and say I Did Enjoy the drumming video (from Way Back in the thread).
    : D

    And the masterful piece you wrote upthread.

    *ducks and runs out*

    : D : D : D

  109. chigau (違う) says


    It was the sacrifice I did for you of a Humboldt squid under the gibbous moon using the widdershins ass of a jawbone that did the trick.

    So that smell of burning gutta percha was you?

  110. says

    Portia, Dalillama: for the life of me, I cannot remember what the heck I wanted to ask. Ah well, it may come to me again.

    Glad to hear you are ok. At first, when reading the responses to you, I thought the fire was in your home. Then I read for comprehension.

    Ouch! I hope the burns heal quick.

    Having not been to many weddings (and the few I went to were years before my awareness of social justice, feminism, et al.), so I am curious what you meant by ‘weddings are an exercise in sexism…’
    Glad you survived the experience :-)

  111. says

    I welcome any and all hugs, no matter how they come?
    I do wonder what a pouncehug combined with Pteryxx’s anklehugs would be like…
    I also like your response to Mrs “no such thing as atheists”.

  112. ednaz says

    Hey Tony!
    In order
    I would like to see that. : )
    Thanks! That’s the first time I said something about atheism in meatspace.

    How are things progressing at work?

  113. Beatrice (looking for a happy thought) says

    Good morning!

    I haven’t had my morning coffee yet, so I’ll give just a short answer.
    If you go to a traditional wedding, half the customs come off as sexist. One example: a friend of mine (my age – 26) got married a year and a half ago. One would expect that she ditches some old customs that are really fucking sexist, but she did the “Dance with the bride” thing. Men pay her to dance with her. I heard some do it by putting money into the bride’s cleavage, but I doubt/hope most women wouldn’t agree to that. (She had two cousins standing there with baskets for the money). Then there’s the bouquet tossing. …

    It just looks really humiliating to me. But then again, maybe I should have written that weddings here seem to be exercises in getting the money you invested into it back, preferably with lots of extra.

  114. says

    Good morning
    Probably already forgot half the things I wanted to say…

    Shit, those people are scary.
    People who become violent and threatening for no reason whatsoever.

    Yeah, I got especially amused by the fertility crap at catholic weddings.
    They are a bit more bearable than funerals, because the occasion in itself is at least happy.


    warning cute kids story + TMI
    The little one entered when I was on the toilet
    She: You have a vagina*, right?
    Me: yes I do
    She: We’re both girls
    Me: Yes, most girls have a vagina
    She: Yours is furry!
    *pars pro totum

  115. McC2lhu doesn't want to know what you did there. says

    In what has been the closest thing I have had to a religious experience outside of an astronomical observatory, I had the numinous pleasure of observing Lucy’s bones (or Australopithecus afarensis, if you prefer) in person at the Bowers Museum in Santa Ana, CA. I thought I had better get a firsthand look at them before they go back to Ethiopia next week for good. I have a fear of some religious nutter trying to destroy them at some probably not far off future date, trying to prove…whatever it is superstitious credulous gits think they can prove with Teh Stoopid, so I didn’t want to squander such an opportunity. You should stop by and take a look if you’re in SoCal this week and want to envision a much larger family portrait than just your Auntie Mildred and that horribly gassy dog she totes around, sitting next to that cousin that has never been seen without a finger up his nose to the n’th knuckle. Lucy is very cute, in the fleshed out version, albeit shorter than expected for a rellie and only slightly less hairy than Mildred.

  116. Walton says

    Following on from my comments in the last thread: I support the Yarl’s Wood Movement for Justice.

    This brutal inhuman, torturous system of detention must end. We do not accept the racism, sexism and homophobia that asylum seekers are subjected to. We do not accept the racist lies and rhetoric spouted by politicians. We believe in and fight for a society with equality, freedom and justice at its heart. Where people can travel freely across nations and borders; where we stand together with our neighbours, friends, coworkers, fellow students and family to make this vision a reality.

    Also, I am glad that Ophelia has written about Jackie Nanyonjo.

  117. Walton says

    Good to see you, Ogvorbis. It’s been a while. (I haven’t been posting here much for the last few months, either.)

  118. rq says

    That is the single most adorable little baby cutey kitten I have ever seen. It’s so tiny!!! (And I’m glad to hear things seem to be on the mend – may progress continue!)

    As per the usual, I have missed you, but hello anyway! *waves*

    As Beatrice mentioned, traditional/religious weddings are very sexist. I mean, the church part goes without saying, but (as an example) the post-ceremony celebrations in Latvian weddings are all about the division of labour in the home, becoming a man/woman (as opposed to being a boy/girl), how many children will the couple have, how much money will the husband make, etc. I know Husband’s mother was horrified that we (I) wanted to cut out many ‘essential’ parts of the after-ceremony-performance (which, these days, isn’t so much a free-for-all party (which I prefer) but a carefully choreographed performance complete with games, activities, humiliation, and practically no free time for dancing at all – oh, and lots and lots of toasts for the men (because, as I learned at a wedding last September, women don’t drink alcohol), like the waking of the bride and groom. This is where first they put the couple to sleep (by placing an axe under the bed – for a first-boy-child! yay! – and lots of noise and horrible jokes, and then they wake them in the morning, with lots of noise and a whole brouhaha about did-they-have-sex.
    Actually, some of this stuff is less about sexism and more about humiliation.
    Anyway. Husband’s mother was upset that we didn’t want to do the whole waking thing. I hate that kind of attention, it does not put me in a good mood esp. in the morning, and I was 5 months pregnant at the time and it was just too much of privacy invasion.
    That’s the long story.

    It’s a happy occasion, until the priest goes on and on about how children are only good children if conceived in wedlock, etc. Single/unmarried mothers/fathers be damned for all eternity, god will burn you up in hell! (But that’s mostly implicit rather than explicit.)

  119. rq says

    Also Giliell re: kids and TMI
    I’ve got the same question from Eldest –
    “Where’s your penis?”
    “I don’t have one.”
    “Oh. Girls don’t have one?”
    I don’t.”
    “Why is it hairy?”
    “Because when people get older, they start growing more hair.”
    “Oh. Is that why dad’s penis is also hairy?”
    “Yes. Yours will get hairy eventually, too.”
    “Oh. Sort of around, like this? [showing with hands]”
    “[Middle Child], too?”
    A very meh conversation, which, I suppose, is how it should go.

  120. Beatrice (looking for a happy thought) says

    Another point on “Beatrice should never have kids” list.

    I am horribly self-conscious about my body and I can’t imagine having this kind of frank conversation with my kids… or being caught on the toilet without getting really upset. I read what you (Giliell and rq) write and think how great you are with kids and how people should totally use this kind of no big deal approach, but at the same time I don’t believe I would be able to do it without lots of mental effort and later being upset.

    I hate my brain. I can deal with not having kids, I’m not entirely sure whether I really want them or not anyway. But this is obviously making me all kinds of awkward around people, especially combined with being convinced that people find touching my body revolting. :/

  121. Beatrice (looking for a happy thought) says

    … I’ve also become vary of anyone touching me, so I react with flinching from casual touch. WHich is really weird since I crave touch and recoil from it at the same time. I don’t really have any trauma in my past to make me react like that.

    That’s why I give virtual hugs, they don’t make me feel weird.

  122. carlie says

    Beatrice- I have two kids, but bathroom time is absolute private time. As is changing time. We make liberal use of the locks on the doors. So not everybody has to be entirely open in that regard.

  123. Esteleth, the most colossal nerd on Pharyngula says

    Second-degree burns on four fingertips. Owie. :(

    What happened?

    Liquid nitrogen. They are “cold burns.” Which arre physiologically indistinguishable from “conventional” burns, just caused by a temperature gradient in the opposite direction. In this case, LN2 is negative 320 Fahrenheit or so.

  124. rowanvt says

    Parsnip’s bladder is still a little large, but so much better that he can go the normal 2 hours between feeds/potties. He also likes to go a little before he eats, and a then go a lot more after. He also ate his biggest meal yet with me. Probably downed close to 10 mls, the greedy little thing. He looks like a pingpong ball with legs attached now. :P

    And now to get ready to go to work all sleep deprived wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

  125. The Mellow Monkey says

    Glad to hear Parsnip is doing better, rowanvt! Now, here’s to hoping you are doing okay with all that sleep deprivation…

  126. says

    Well, this shall be known as the year in which spring wasn’t. On Wednesday I was wearing my winter coat, today I ran around in a T-shirt and it was more than sufficiently warm.
    I’m also very, very naive.
    I thought my aunt was coming from Berlin to give my sister a break. Stupid me. My parents have gone on a holiday…


    It’s a happy occasion, until the priest goes on and on about how children are only good children if conceived in wedlock, etc. Single/unmarried mothers/fathers be damned for all eternity, god will burn you up in hell! (But that’s mostly implicit rather than explicit.

    Nah, not in Germany, German priests aren’T stupid because unmarried parents are way too common and quite often wedding and baptizing will be a joint event, or the older children are already the flower kids. After all your clients pay a handsome church-tax every month and you don’t want them to leave.

    As carlie said, lots of this is parenting style, not a mandatory requirement. I grew up in a house with no locked doors, and as long as everybody is comfortable with it it remains like that.

  127. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    If there wasn’t enough reasons to love this place already, here I find folks discussing a topic (nudity and privacy) in a calm and reasonable manner. I guarrentee that that topic would start a nuke throwing parenting on many sites.

    We’re pretty casual about it too, but there is a code phrase that is non-negotiable. If someone says “Can you please leave me in peace.” they get left alone, no arguments. And that includes if the Small Fry says it to us, provided of course she’s in safe place etc.

  128. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    …parenting war

    There are moths bigger than my thumb attacking the windows and I’m typing on an iPad. That’s my excuse and I’m having it tattooed on my ass the next time I go to Melbourne. :)

    Goodnight to all. It’s been a weird day in a weird world, but then, aren’t they all?

  129. Portia, worn out says

    Here’s a vomit-worthy example of pretty common attitudes about weddings, at least here in the U.S. This video made the rounds on facebook with lots of “OMG THAT IS THE SWEETEST THING EVAR.” Another way weddings are sexist is that they retain a lot of the transactional elements that they have had throughout history. “Who gives this woman to be wedded to this man?” is still a really common verbatim part of the ceremony ’round my parts. Whichever bridesmaid catches the bouquet is supposedly the next to get married. And they’re all supposed to riotously clamor to catch it, because if they’re single, that’s obviously a problem. Let’s see, what else…like rq and Giliell said, there’s lots of humiliation, but it seems mostly for the bride. The biggest one I can think of is the garter-fetching. It always struck me as squicky how everyone hoots and hollers as the groom sticks his head up her skirt (because he has a right to, now, is the undertone I get from the ritual) and grabs the garter, only to salaciously sling it to his buddies. Right down to the color of the dress the bride wears…did you know it’s white to symbolize her sexual purity?

    You’re right about guilt. It’s a good policy…I just have a terrible guilt problem generally. I am working on it, though. I like the visual of throwing it out the screen ^___^

    I’ll be sure to be more careful in the future when I talk about fire, and clarify. :)

  130. Walton says

    Beatrice: Oh, I feel awkward and self-conscious about my body too. And I have never wanted children of my own, and long since vowed never to have them. So you’re not the only one to feel that way. It’s perfectly okay not to want children.

  131. Emrysmyrddin says

    Just as I was going AFK I realised there’s a soft, squidgy little misogynist troll on the Anthropology thread. I really really have to go AFK, I can’t stay to chew: I’m hoping that the sninyfang signal can be lit.

  132. Portia, worn out says

    I chewed a little on the chewtoy. : )

    Hope you aren’t too worn out from the jerks at patheos, WMDKitty. Also hope your visit with partner is wonderful. Thanks for letting us know you’ll be away.

  133. says

    wedding thingies
    We totally and absolutely banned all games, traditions and things from our wedding. Didn’t stop my mother from throwing rice at me. I threw a “bouquet”. Actually I threw several small bunches of roses, one for every young woman present, which mostly meant children. My bouquet remained with me, together with the flower-wreath I had in my hair. I also had a red gown.

    I remember reading about conflicts between the church clients and especially the RCC because people increasingly think that weddings, baptisms and funerals should be somehow about the person who’s at the centre and the chrch being annoyed that no, you can’t have any old pop-song just because it means the world to you and your partner and is the perfect symbol of your love and commitment to each other. It’s gotta be approved by Jesus.
    I don’t think they’re faring very well with that because for many church-goers in Germany it’s not about belief but about tradition. My two BFFs are a submarine Roman Catholic and a Lutehran Sexton who both believe neither in god nor in Jesus.

    Don’t answer if you don’t want to, but is your vagina an Object of Wonder™ to your boys the same way Mr.’s penis is to the girls?

    More parenting stuff
    From tomorrow on, the great “get dressed, get a dinosaur” fun commences.
    I’m sick and tired of having a fight with them about getting dressed every. single. morning and. every. single. evening. So I made them little cards where they can collect stamps. If they get dressed within 10 minutes they get a stamp. If they have 10 stamps by the end of the week (for the first weeks) they can swap their cards for a little dinosaur toy.
    Now, since they’ll sleep over at my in-laws on Tuesdays (I come home very late from work on Tuesdays and will have to leave very early for school on Wednesdays) I needed to inform my mum-in-law about the rules. My dad in law turned to his wife and said “we never had those problems with our kids”.
    Mum in law said: “No, but they also didn’t have to get dressed themselves at that age, only if they wanted to”
    Mr. remembers that his mum put out his clothes while he was already well into secondary school…

  134. says

    Salon published an article about Beatles songs that were never released, not officially released anyway. Some of these songs were satires of anti-immigrant sentiments. Apparently, some people felt the satire was subtle enough to be mistaken for anti-immigrant statements. Some subtle, some not so subtle.

    A thousand times they have shouted at me,
    “Go home, you don’t belong here”
    Let me remind the Gringo
    That I didn’t cross the border, the border crossed me
    America was born free—Man divided her
    They drew the line so I would have to jump it
    And they call me Invader
    That’s a big error
    They took eight states from us—who is the invader here?
    I am a stranger in my own land
    I don’t come to make war—I’m a working man

  135. says

    How the right wing operates in the voter suppression arena:

    All across the country following the 2010 midterms, Republican legislatures passed and governors enacted a series of laws designed to make voting more difficult for Obama’s constituency — minorities, especially the growing Hispanic community; the poor; students; and the elderly or handicapped. These included the creation of voter photo-ID laws, measures affecting registration and early voting, and, in Iowa and Florida, laws to prevent ex-felons from exercising their franchise. (Florida’s governor, in secret, reversed the policies of his Republican predecessors Jeb Bush and Charlie Crist, policies that would have permitted one hundred thousand former felons, predominantly black and Hispanic, to vote in 2012.) Democrats were stunned. “There has never been in my lifetime, since we got rid of the poll tax and all the Jim Crow burdens in voting, the determined effort to limit the franchise that we see today,” said President Bill Clinton in July 2011. Once again, the voting rights of American minorities were in peril.

    The newly elected Republican officials were able to act so quickly because they had the help of an ultraconservative organization known as the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). Its founder was the late Paul Weyrich, a legendary conservative writer and proselytizer who founded both ALEC and the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think-tank dedicated to limited government, an economy free of federal regulations and the sanctity of traditional marriage. Backed by conservative corporations such as Coca-Cola, Philip Morris, AT&T, Exxon Mobil and Walmart, among many others, and funded by right-wing billionaires Richard Mellon Scaife, the Coors family and David and Charles Koch, ALEC provided services for like-minded legislators and lobbyists. ALEC wrote bills and created the campaigns to pass them. Its spokesmen boasted that “each year, more than 1,000 bills based on its models are introduced in state legislatures, and that approximately 17 percent of those bills become law.”

    Much, much more here: Link. The virtue of this article is its scholarly approach and the fact that it doesn’t restrict itself to generalities. The details are all there.

  136. says

    Saturday Night Live on the U.S. Senate’s approach to gun control. Video at the link:


    [SNL version of President Obama speaking] As you know, over the past few months, I have made gun control legislation a top priority for my administration. Which is why I am so proud to announce that last week, the Senate voted 68 to 31 to begin debating the idea of discussing gun control. Let me say that again: They’ve agreed to think about talking about gun control.

  137. says


    Right down to the color of the dress the bride wears…did you know it’s white to symbolize her sexual purity?

    Actually that one’s apparently a sort of folk-etymology; the white wedding dress started as a social climbing/conspicuous consumption thing. Queen Victoria got married in one, and after that, people started wanting them to show that they were aspiring to be like the queen, and that they could afford a quite expensive and easily ruined dress (in the days before good bleaches and cleaners, it was really hard to get cloth that white to start with, and you’ll never get even the slightest spill or stain out of it.).
    Oh, what an adorable little kitty.

  138. says

    Bill McKibben, writing for Rolling Stone, covers the organized resistance to the fossil-fuel industry, and the support for organizations attempting to address climate change.

    It got so hot in Australia in January that the weather service had to add two new colors to its charts. A few weeks later, at the other end of the planet, new data from the CryoSat-2 satellite showed 80 percent of Arctic sea ice has disappeared. We’re not breaking records anymore; we’re breaking the planet. In 50 years, no one will care about the fiscal cliff or the Euro crisis. They’ll just ask, “So the Arctic melted, and then what did you do?”

    Here’s the good news: We’ll at least be able to say we fought.

    After decades of scant organized response to climate change, a powerful movement is quickly emerging around the country and around the world, building on the work of scattered front-line organizers who’ve been fighting the fossil-fuel industry for decades. It has no great charismatic leader and no central organization; it battles on a thousand fronts. But taken together, it’s now big enough to matter, and it’s growing fast…

  139. says

    As a follow-up to my post @169 on voter suppression laws, here’s a Rolling Stone article on the Five Most Outrageous Facts About Our Broken Voting System


    1. African-American voters wait in line nearly twice as long as white voters.

    2. Hispanic voters wait in line one-and-a-half times as long as white voters.

    3. True-blue Democrats wait in line 45 percent longer than red-bleeding Republicans.

    “Strong Democrats waited an average of 16 minutes, compared to an average of 11 minutes for strong Republicans.”

    4. Voting in Florida remains a shitshow – even compared to other big states.

    5. The federal Election Assistance Commission is on its last legs. It is supposed to have four commissioners. It currently has four vacancies.

    Details at the link.

  140. says

    Fucking bankers and hedge fund managers! Most of them anyway. Why are some organizations still trusting these guys? And inviting them to speak and to sell their wares to the unwary?

    Dan Loeb, who isn’t known as the biggest hedge-fund asshole still working on Wall Street (only because Stevie Cohen hasn’t been arrested yet), is on the board and co-founder of a group called Students First New York. And Students First has been one of the leading advocates pushing for states to abandon defined benefit plans – packages which guarantee certain retirement benefits for public workers like teachers – in favor of defined contribution plans, where the benefits are not guaranteed.

    In other words, Loeb has been soliciting the retirement money of public workers, then turning right around and lobbying for those same workers to lose their benefits. He’s essentially asking workers to pay for their own disenfranchisement (with Loeb getting his two-and-twenty cut, or whatever obscene percentage of their retirement monies he will charge as a fee). If that isn’t the very definition of balls, I don’t know what is.

    More details here: Matt Taibbi, writing for Rolling Stone

  141. Portia, worn out says

    Interesting, I (obviously) didn’t know that was the origin.
    I guess my statement should be amended to the perception of the reason for wearing white. All those jokes about “She shouldn’t be wearing white, amirite?”

  142. says

    Another excerpt from Matt Taibbi’s article about Dan Loeb simultaneously soliciting and betraying pension funds (see comment #174):

    One thing that people need to realize about Wall Street and the financial system in general: many of the self-congratulating millionaires and billionaires you read about in the news aren’t “self-made” in any real sense, but actually live either directly or indirectly off of your money. The quickest way to extreme wealth in this world is to attach oneself to giant piles of institutional money like public pension funds. The subprime mortgage crisis was fueled in large part by sociopathic hotshots from banks and hedge funds who convinced institutional investors – your corporate retirement fund, your public pension, your union – to buy crappy mortgage-backed securities.

    Guys like Dan Loeb, they don’t actually do anything, other than shave cuts off of other peoples’ money. The psychological justification for taking such high fees is that they earn for their clients, but even that’s debatable in some cases (AFT points out that some of Loeb’s funds haven’t even outperformed the S&P).

    The point is, many of these guys owe their outrageous lifestyles to people who actually work for a living, who’ve been putting nickels and dimes away week after week for years, just so guys like Loeb can swoop in, make a pitch after a fancy lunch or two, and then take big chunks of that cash to buy private jets and Picassos. For them to suddenly become self-righteous and political, to tell the world that it can’t afford real pensions and retirement funds for regular people anymore, is a rich irony.

  143. says

    Mormons, particularly Utah mormons, are still discussing apostle Boyd K. Packer’s latest foray into the wilderness of illogic and anti-gay sentiment. Of gays, Greeks, and an LDS apostle

    Aristotle must have furrowed his brow from on high when he heard LDS Church apostle Boyd K. Packer speak on the virtue of tolerance during the church’s General Conference this past weekend. Packer claimed that virtue, in excess, becomes vice, and that tolerance in particular can become a trap.

  144. says


    I guess my statement should be amended to the perception of the reason for wearing white. All those jokes about “She shouldn’t be wearing white, amirite?”

    Can’t argue there. Indeed, as an indicator of cultural misogyny that’s a pretty strong one: In less than a century, a custom that started as social climbing got reinterpreted as being about women’s sexual history.

  145. says

    Giliell, rq:
    Interesting. To the best of my memory I do not recall having any conversations with my parents like that when I was young.
    I do have a memory of waking in the middle of the night to (I think) use the bathroom and hearing strange sounds coming from my parents bedroom. To me it sounded like my mother was in trouble. I asked ‘mommy, mommy, are you ok?’ as I opened their bedroom door-to see what I now know was my parents having sex. I do not recall what happened after that, but I *think* there was some comforting by my mother at some point (of the ‘tuck you into bed and reassure you mommy is ok’ variety).
    I have a more detailed answer to give about how the job is progressing to give later (and on the laptop), but the short version is interesting, tiring, informative, aggravating. Pretty much like many peoples’ jobs, I imagine.

  146. Portia, worn out says

    Ugh, good point, Dalillama. As usual, sexist crap gets worse the more you think about it : p

    More and more often the only redeemable aspect of SNL is Weekend Update. Really, SNL? Blackface? With a black actor in the scene so the blackface actor can literally get approval during the scene? Yuck.

  147. says

    I guess I never had much reason to think about marriage in anything but a general sense. Am I to take it the subtext of ‘wearing white’ is a woman’s sexual purity? As if a woman should not have sex until married. Fuck that.

  148. says

    That’s the thing about kids catching their parents having sex (especially when the parents don’t notice it): lots of sex looks like and sounds like one hurting the other, even without any added kink.
    And if you can’t make sense of it, that’s quite disturbing.
    While naked bodies were never “hidden” at home, I grew up with some strange ideas about sex. My parents made sure I knew the technical baby-making details, but never the sex and fun and fun without somebody else part, so I grew up believing that people only have sex to make babies.
    I was shocked, I tell you, shocked to find out that they still had sex when my sister discussed contraception with my mum.

  149. says

    I have had conversations with coworkers about parents having the sex talk with teens. Many people I spoke with never had much of a talk at all. I know I never had one. It makes me wonder how, if at all, parents have this very important conversation with their children. I think I have heard of some that give the talk at several stages of development, rather than once as a teen. I think I recall some of the Horde parents talking about teaching their kids the anatomically correct terms for sex organs, as well as personal autonomy, which is great IMO. With all the religious furor over sex education in schools, I really worry that young people are not getting any accurate information. If parents do give info, how accurate is it, especially if they have not learned much either. ‘On the job training’ is not the way to learn about STIs or contraception, autonomy, pregnancy, etc.
    Damn, I just realized that problem is likely worse for those who are queer. I did not know much of anything the first time I was with a guy.

  150. says

    Now I wonder why purity is so darned important. I thought children were the sole purpose for marriage (according to church officials). You do not need to be a virgin to have children. And why are men not required to be virgins? I can see the misogyny a mile away, but the why of it eludes me.

  151. says

    As I recall, there was a health class that parents could opt their kids out of, and I wanted to do something else with that part of my day, so I asked to be excused on the grounds that it was going to be tedious and annoying, and I already knew the material. My mom made me go over the basics of safer sex and the like, agreed that I had it covered from my own readings, and I got out of the class.

  152. Beatrice (looking for a happy thought) says


    And why are men not required to be virgins?

    Men have to “shop around” before chaining themselves to a woman. Women have to stay untainted by other men’s touch. It’s like men were afraid of not measuring up or something when they came up with that one.

  153. says

    The short answer is patrilineal descent. Who you are, what you inherit, etc. are based on who your father is, and in a society without DNA testing the only way to be sure that a particular man is the father is to ensure that the mother has never had sex with any other men. In pre-Christian Ireland, for instance, descent was reckoned through the mother, so the Clan Chief’s heir would typically be his sister’s eldest son, and in that culture women (married and unmarried) had very nearly equal opportunity to take lovers without anymore social disapproval than men would suffer.

  154. Portia, worn out says

    Are my legs supposed to tingle after running/walking? This feels weird.

    Crip Dyke –

    Processing your email, preparing response.

  155. says

    worn out, Portia:
    *supposed* to be worn out? I do not know. But after various forms of exercise I have felt tingly. Whether it is biking or weight lifting, or running, etc. I do agree it feels funny.

  156. Portia, worn out says

    Shit. I just chipped my front tooth. Fuckfuckfuck.
    It doesn’t hurt and it isn’t obvious, but it’s there. Fuck :(

  157. Eurasian magpie says

    …and I’ve heard about those spell-checker things, but do not hold with them, nossirree.

  158. rq says

    re: @167
    Yes, it is.
    While we’re pretty open and casual about nakedness (mostly due to the fact that we do the whole country-sauna thing as a family (just us, no one else, though!), so it’s all out there regularly), I’m still the only anatomically-female in the family, so I’m bound to get questions about why I look different. They want to touch too, though, something I am not comfortable with, and I usually just say it’s because I don’t want other people touching me there (“Is that because you pee from your bum?” <- this was a puzzle: how can I pee without a penis?) and that nobody else but them is allowed to touch their private parts (unless it's myself or Husband helping them pee from time to time, although Eldest is growing out of that unless he's asleep).
    Interestingly, Eldest has most interest about it (mostly because of the age he's at), but I remember him asking questions when he was ~3, while Middle Child, at that age now, doesn't really wonder about it (not openly, at least – then again, Eldest discovered himself at an earlier age than Middle Child, so it's probably just an individual thing). We'll see.
    I'm hoping that by not making a big deal about body parts, at least some of that ability to communicate openly will transfer to conversations about sex and other more serious topics. I know it'll still take work and effort and a certain gathering-of-courage, but maybe it'll be easier if those things aren't considered 'special' or 'weird' to start with. [/socialexperiment]

    I also grew up in a home without locks at all, although nakedness as such wasn't as much of a casual affair as it is now. Except when we were kids, we ran around naked during the summer with the neighbouring kids.
    Never caught my parents having sex, either, only heard them sometimes.

  159. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    Thanks Portia.

    I think I’m going to take a half hour to run to the store for cookies.

    Crip Dyke: Fueled by Tea, sugar, and nutritive food… in that order.

  160. says

    Yeah, sometimes we need to teach our kids that parents have bodily autonomy, too.
    I only now managed to teach #1 that no, I don’t won’t her hand down my clevage anymore. A side effect of breastfeeding nobody tells you about. She’s not the only breastfed kid I know for whom, for years to come mummy’s breasts mean comfort long after they’re weaned.
    But I got more and more uncomfortable with it, especially since my tits can be very sensitive.
    And I think that one of the most uncomfortable/hilarious moments as a teen was when I noticed that my mum was trying to get my dad into bed but he didn’t…

    Oh, and YAY!, construction of the baby-quilt for a friend works as planned…

  161. rq says

    Oh, and for Tonyhow to train a wife. Because, see, not only pure, but well-trained is Prime! (And yes, it’s all about the patrilineal descent. Proven fertile women used to be the thing, now it’s all about who’s your daddy – even though, if a woman is cheating on the side and in secret, paternity may still be in doubt… for which consequences are dire.)

  162. chigau (違う) says

    Crip Dyke: Fueled by Tea, sugar, and nutritive food… in that order.

    For some reason I read this as

    Crip Dyke: Fueled by Tea, anger, and nutritive food… in that order.

    Seemed quite reasonable ;)

  163. carlie says

    One of the first cracks in the wall of Christianity for me was when I was telling my college Baptist Student Union group about the wedding dress I had chosen, and mentioned it was a light shade of ivory because pure white looked awful with my skin tone. The leader of the BSU, the guy who was the adult employee paid to run the place, who was in his late 30s, snipped “In my day, we had a saying about girls who didn’t wear white”, and left no doubt as to what he meant. I’d seen Christianity used as a social weapon plenty of times, but never on something quite that minor, and he was obviously not joking. So, there’s that.

  164. Ogvorbis, broken failure. says

    Thank you for giving me hope. If only I could return the favour.

    Thank you, FossilFishy. I’ve been having some weird ups and downs and some bizarre dreams in which I, as an adult, am the perpetrator. They are scary and I was realy starting to wonder if this was something I would do. I don’t think so, but damn they scare me.

    I don’t know if I have hope, but I’m glad I give it to others. Maybe I’m a carrier?

    Good to see you, Ogvorbis. It’s been a while. (I haven’t been posting here much for the last few months, either.)

    Good to see you, Walton.

  165. Ogvorbis, broken failure. says

    Shit. Sometimes (no, quite often, actually) Idespair of humanity:

    A Florida police sergeant was fired for offering Trayvon Martin shooting targets to his colleagues, authorities said Saturday.

    Sgt. Ron King of Port Canaveral Police Department was fired Friday after two officer allegedly refused to use the targets for firearm training. One of those officers filed a complaint against him, which prompted an internal review.

    From Rawstory.

    Then again, the fact that a fellow officer filed the complaint shows progress.

    I guess.

  166. Portia, worn out says

    Alright, so I’m having a crappy day and doing that thing where everything is awful and bad and terrible and blah blah blah. But, I still have the willpower to not facebook stalk S. There’s a tiny part of my rational brain squeaking “That will only make you feel worse!” and I listened. Go me.

    Speaking of S, I probably have to see him next week at a bar association event and of course I’m already stressing out about it. We haven’t spoken in a month, since I told him I wasn’t having a particular brand of his bullshit. He has been ignoring me since. Our acquaintances in the legal community don’t know we’re no longer “an item.” Painful awkwardness all around!

  167. Ogvorbis, broken failure. says


    I’m glad he was fired, anyway. : /

    *hugs* for you.

    Oh, no question. I’m impressed that a fellow officer felt safe enough to actually file the complaint.

    Sorry your having a tough day. Hugs to you.

  168. Portia, worn out says

    Thanks, Ogvorbis.

    Pteryxx, I love that link.

    Now I’m gonna have a cigarette and get to work on stuff I need to file tomorrow. : p

  169. Ogvorbis, broken failure. says

    Thanks, Pteryxx.

    By the by, do you know why you can never hear a pteranodon take a piss?

  170. Pteryxx says

    *glares* Sheesh, you people and your potty humor.

    *perches over somebody’s car*

  171. Ogvorbis, broken failure. says


    Shhhh. Just wait. I want ot wonk if Pteryxx knows that one.

  172. Pteryxx says

    Ogvorbis, your pugilistic prurience has not been passed over. (ptui!)

    (I trust I’ve pressed home my point…) ;>

  173. cicely (mumblemumble-SomethingHalf-Witty-mumblemumble) says

    chigau: Hurray! for gone tooth pain! Science FTW!

    rowanvt: Thanks for the itteh bitteh kitteh update! A *tiny scritch* for Parsnip, and a *hug* for you.

    WMDKitty: You just go on, have a good time with Partner…don’t think about uswe don’t mind at all….

    Beatrice: *completely-unweird-virtual-hug*. As a bonus, and regardless of all the jokes about catching computer viruses, a virtual hug is contagion-free. :)
    Mind you, I quite like Meatspace hugs, too; just not from everybody.


  174. carlie says

    Portia, speaking of S, Captain Awkward today might be helpful (not sure how much, ‘cuz not quite the same, but still how to get over someone who won’t leave you alone).

  175. Portia, worn out says


    You are spot on. I read that about an hour ago, and it had me in tears. Aside from the Other Woman (and other specifics) business, it was incredibly on point. The general advice is always helpful, but this one…dang. Thanks for the heads up, though, I welcome any future stuff like that that you see :)

  176. carlie says

    Sorry I was too slow, but glad you saw it! :)

    I have to say, it was sad reading about euthanizing the Golden Retriever of Love. I’ve had a couple of Darth Vader friendships in the last few years, and learning of the Golden Retriever was comforting, but realizing it needs to be put down sometimes was difficult (yet helpful).

  177. Portia, worn out says

    Killing hope is hard, I agree, carlie. This

    The best part of you wants to find a way to preserve the good in all of this, and to make everything feel less wasted and wrong. Like, if you can be friends, it will all have been worth it.

    is like she’s inside my head. It’s ridiculous…

    (If anyone else cares, this is what we’re talking about: http://captainawkward.com/2013/04/14/465-life-after-darth/#more-5359)

  178. cicely (mumblemumble-SomethingHalf-Witty-mumblemumble) says

    Portia: *hugs* and plenty of moral support for you in your upcoming Painful Awkwardness with S and the Bar Association Event.

  179. Portia, worn out says

    Thank you very much, cicely. I’m sure I’ll whine at you guys all about it afterwards : )

    (It occurred to me the other day that since my BFF got a GF (like a year ago) and S bailing out of my life, I have a serious lack of a BFF, a person I can call or text for no reason or any reason. I have my mom, and we email all the time, and she is always there, but I just don’t have…a meatspace person anymore. And it makes me kinda sad. But it also makes me all the more glad to have you all. So thanks. ♥)

  180. says


    I’m glad he was fired, anyway

    Which is a sign of progress in itself, really. Also, *big Hugs* for impending awkwardness.

    Dreams are dreams, nothing more. While I don’t mean to diminish the effects of such nightmares, the only danger is that they’ll impede your sleep, add to your stress levels, and generally do what nightmares do. *hugs*

    Comfortable *hugs* to you as well.

  181. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    4 hours ago I hadn’t yet read the 100 pages or so of aiding, abetting, conspiracy, and common intention.

    I’m about 8 pages from done (bot interrupted by kids & am not cooking dinner), and I think I really understand it, despite blowing it off completely when busy earlier in the year.

    I think I might just be prepared for the exam tomorrow… Constitutional came down to the wire getting everything read & organized [thus forgetting my copy of the constitution]. Contracts I had about 40 min to spare. Think I might be just as well off this time…and I slept 9 hours on Fri & 8 last night. I was scared those 17 hours would come back to bite me, but not so far…

  182. Portia, worn out says

    Crip Dyke:
    Those hours were well spent.
    I’m actually pretty good with conspiracy, but it sounds like you are too :)

  183. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    Portia. we’re so happy to be here for you.

    You’ve been very kind and thoughtful in talking to me about general principles knowing that we’re dealing with different legal systems.

    :heart: back.

  184. Portia, worn out says

    Crip Dyke, you make me wish virtual hugs could be IRL hugs. I, of course, don’t feel like I’ve been all that helpful to you, but I’m glad you feel differently :)

    I’m very impressed with your criminal-law intake in such a short period, too! I always did marvel at the folks who managed law school with a family. I just had myself to be concerned with and that was hard enough!

  185. cicely (mumblemumble-SomethingHalf-Witty-mumblemumble) says

    Crip Dyke: Best of luck on tomorrow’s test!
    I believe that tradition calls for you to break a leg, but I’d give it a miss, if I were you.

  186. says

    Sometimes I hate technology.
    My cellphone decided yesterday to not function for a few hours, no matter what I did. Then it miraculously (as in ‘walking on water’) decided to come back on (of its own volition). This morning I woke up to a phone that would not charge, no matter where I tried (at home, in the car, at work). Of course my battery was low as well. I will receive my replacement phone on Tuesday. So no phone tonight or all of tomorrow. I work all day Tuesday, so no chance to get the phone and bring it to a retailer and have them switch all my info over. Then I work Wednesday morning, and *hopefully* I can get off work in time to get to a Verizon dealer. If not, then it will be Thursday. It couldn’t be as simple as walking in and swapping my phone for a new one. :: le sigh ::

  187. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says


    Crip Dyke, you make me wish virtual hugs could be IRL hugs.

    If you ever come to the PNW, either side of the border, LMK.

    Chigau @202:
    Crip Dyke: Fueled by Tea, anger, and nutritive food… in that order.

    Seemed quite reasonable ;)

    Been known to happen.

    @ everyone…
    Settled in for the night, if I have any discipline at all, I won’t be back til tomorrow morning.

    :hugs: for consenting all and sundry

    or is that:
    for all and sundry consenting

    I think grammatically they both kinda work & both kinda don’t. have at it any grammar nerds who wanna.

  188. Portia, worn out says

    Night, Crip Dyke, take care and good luck.
    I’ll let you know if I’m in the area :)

  189. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    I hear you Tony, but when it works it’s damn near miraculous. For. Instance, I’m sitting on top of a hill in a pine plantation resting my legs before I ride back down on a race trail called Uzzi. (From shop to top 50 min. A new pb.) And yet I can still see how you folk are doing half a world away. We live in an age of commonplace wonders and uncommon annoyances. Tis a fine time to be alive.

  190. says

    No argument there.
    Compared to all that technology has done for us, as well as what it continues to do and will do in the future-from saving lives (of so many wonderful living beings on this planet) to extending lives, from peering deep into the universe to seeing on a microscopic level, from bringing us across the world to taking us to the moon and more–technology is a wonder (and all the people, of all shapes, sizes, genders, nationalities, sexualities, and beliefs who helped create all the wonderful tech we have–no forgetting you).
    I think know I can deal with temporary first world problems.

  191. rowanvt says

    @ Crip Dyke- You can do eeeeet!

    I spent most of the day practically asleep on my feet, I am so exhausted from this kitten. Fortunately, he seems to prefer feeds every 3 hours so I can get some better/more sleep tonight and be ready for work tomorrow. The clients were very patient with me today after I explained that the kitten had kept me up most of the night.

    Gonna go feed and then crash into bed for a while again. Hugs for everyone who wants one!

  192. says

    I am drawing a blank here.
    I was reading something recently about “American exceptionalism”, and remembered an Index of some sort that compared the United States with other countries (and the US was found lagging behind in so many areas). What’s the name of that Index and/or a link to a site that talks about this?

    Gah! I hate brain farts.

  193. chigau (違う) says

    I don’t know if this is what you’re looking for but the CIA World Factbook has a tonne of comparative charts.
    You can google it.
    I won’t link ’cause oooh CIA.

  194. says


    What was that about being the first male Slayer?

    I wonder, if we ask nicely, would P-Zed or Chris put up a 420 thread on that Most High Holiday?

    (Mods/Community Watch folks — Please pass on the request to our Overlords?)

  195. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    So, I have an absurdly underexplained lab to figure out, got allotted the most time consuming part of the calculations for it, and it’s due tomorrow at Midnight. By “lab” I mean “do calculations from a horribly formatted data set gathered over several hours and distributed by the instructor with no lab handout or guidelines aside from vague verbal explanations by him and the lab tech.” WHO THE FUCK DOESN’T PROVIDE WRITTEN INSTRUCTIONS FOR AN UNDERGRADUATE LAB ASSIGNMENT?!

    I volunteered to do a FMEA analysis on my MechEng senior project for another class and give the rest of my group talking points for it, and that presentation is Tuesday.

    And tomorrow I still have to find time to meet with my group and my boss and discuss the fact that I just determined that we may have to go back to a series-of-tube-in-tube scraped-surface heat exchanger design (because six, 4 1/2in long and with an interface tube of 10in nominal diameter stainless pipe, or 20 stacked 24in coolant plates, with one scraper each in both cases and sealing issues for each unit, will do it), and convince my group of it, when they’re heavily invested in the plate idea, which means I need to have calculations to show them as to WHY the tube-series is better, and that has to happen by 18:30 tomorrow…and we need a complete design drawing package by next Wednesday morning. :(

    And I’m still underslept. Also, my ex did not see her daughter at all this weekend, but txted me at 7 this evening to announce that she’d been busy moving again, just when I was starting to really hope she’d finally been annihilated by a bolt of divine retribution. :(

  196. rq says

    *hugs* all around, and thanks for the support yesterday, which I sort of left hanging because I didn’t come back to the computer after complaining about my marginally crappy day. Sorry for being so rude!

    I’m so behind you on the whole S thing, I have my pom-poms out (virtually; it’s tough to go to market with pom-poms in hand), and I think I’ll email you about this one!

    *hugs* for you, too.

    That’s great news about the kitten being better, but I certainly hope you get some extra sleep soon! (Baby animals, they’re all the same, cross-species and all…)

    Annnd… more later.

  197. Beatrice (looking for a happy thought) says


    *hugs* for each and all of you

    I’ll take two. *hugs back*

    I don’t know if there is something in the air or what, but it’s apparently “feeling shitty” day all around. Take care. We’ll slog through the day somehow and tomorrow will be better.

  198. rq says

    Yes, tomorrow will be better!
    Also, I hope Justin Trudeau will be better for Canada (and hopefully the Liberals will get it together next elections), because after reading this whistleblower’s letter about the Harper government, I’m scared of the Conservatives winning again.

    And if anyone ever wondered what Latvians are like, here you go. And yes, we’re all like that, right down to the top hat. ;)

  199. Portia, worn out says


    Up for a fire call and of course I have to check in and of course I see your smile-inducing comments : )

    (Thumbs crossed for lotto winning).

    Night/morning everybody.

  200. Beatrice (looking for a happy thought) says


    Do you first have to start buying lottery tickets, or have you already got that one covered?

  201. Portia, worn out says

    Thanks, rq. I’m home safe now, trying to get sleepy again. (It takes 3 and a half hours to set a capsized semi to right…yeesh). I look forward to your email, but no rush. : )

    Beatrice, I hope you’re right about Monday. : p

    Giliell, hope your day is going great.

  202. opposablethumbs says

    Thank you for the good Parsnip news, rowanvt. Hope it continues to go well!

    Good luck for the next exam, Ms Crip Dyke, I have every confidence that you will continue to knock their socks off. All the socks, obliterated by your mighty competence and skill!

    It would be rather awesome if you and Portia were to meet up some time. You would probably cause some sort of implosion in the fabric of reality, due to such a concentration of Good-People and Lawyer in the same place at the same time :-) (I know nasty-lawyer is a bit of a cliché and you two are living proof of the opposite, but the only lawyer I really know personally in meatspace is someone I’d much rather avoid so it sort of makes me feel you two are even more special. If you see what I mean. Not sure that sounds quite how I meant it to sound.)

    My sympathies for the ongoing process of disengagement re S, Portia. I’d just like to send you these {{{virtual transatlantic hugs}}} if I may.

  203. blf says

    I’m suer they are a charming bunch of bigots, Inquiry launched after Islamic group holds segregated lecture:

    The University of Leicester has launched an investigation into gender segregation at a public lecture held by its student Islamic society.

    The talk, entitled Does God Exist?, featured a guest speaker Hamza Tzortzis as part of an Islamic Awareness week. Seating at the event was segregated, with different entrances into the lecture theatre for men and women.

    It follows news that a London university, UCL, has banned an Islamic organisation from campus after concluding that it attempted to impose segregation at a debate which also featured Tzortzis.

    In Leicester, more than 100 students attended the segregated event, which took place last month. A photograph passed to the Guardian shows signs put up in a university building, directing the segregation.

    A message on the group’s website says: “In all our events, [the society] operate a strict policy of segregated seating between males and females.” The statement was removed after the Guardian contacted the society.

    A spokesman for Leicester said: …”The University will not interfere with people’s right to choose where to sit. If some people choose to sit in a segregated manner because of their religious convictions then they are free to do so. By the same token, if people attending do not wish to sit in a segregated manner, they are free to do so.”

    The issue made the headlines recently after Prof Lawrence Krauss, an eminent atheist, walked out of a segregated event at University College London (UCL). He returned after organisers said segregation would be abandoned. Richard Dawkins later described the attempted segregation as a “sexual apartheid”.

    The University of East London also recently blocked an Islamist meeting which was also set to have segregated seating.

    Dawkins wrote on his website: “Isn’t it really about time we decent, nice, liberal people stopped being so pusillanimously terrified of being thought ‘Islamophobic’ and stood up for decent, nice, liberal values?”

    Unfortunately, this time no-one stood up to them.

  204. blf says

    Mr Stirling Moss is a legendary racing driver back in the days when it was outrageously dangerous. He’s also a bit of a right-wing crackpot (e.g., he supports the UKIP — all you need to know about those nutters is they have(? had?) Monckton as their shadow Science Minister), so perhaps it’s not too surprising that …Stirling Moss: women lack the mental aptitude to compete in F1:

    • ‘The mental stress I think would be pretty difficult for a lady’
    • ‘I completely disagree,’ says development driver Susie Wolff

    …Stirling Moss says he is “not surprised” there are no women drivers in Formula One as he believes they do not have the mental strength to compete.

    The 83-year-old added that, while women have the physical strength, he does not think they have the mental ability to cope with wheel-to-wheel racing.

    “I think they have the strength, but I don’t know if they’ve got the mental aptitude to race hard, wheel-to-wheel,” he said in comments made in a BBC Radio 5 Live special.

    “The mental stress I think would be pretty difficult for a lady to deal with in a practical fashion. I just don’t think they have aptitude to win a Formula One race.”

    Just five women have raced in grands prix and only one has scored a point, however Danica Patrick became the first woman to win an IndyCar race in America, took pole at the 2013 Daytona 500 and is a former IndyCar rookie of the year.

    The Williams development driver Susie Wolff, who is hoping to become a Formula One driver, was angered by Moss’s comments.

    “I completely disagree with him. It makes me cringe hearing that,” she said. “I’ve got a lot of respect for Sir Stirling and what he achieved, but I think we’re in a different generation.

    “For Moss, it’s unbelievable that a female would drive a Formula One car, which is fair enough. In the days they were racing, every time they stepped into a car, they were putting their life on the line. But F1 is much more technologically advanced, it’s much safer than it was.”

  205. blf says

    Antarctic ice melting at record rate, study shows:

    Summer ice is melting at a faster rate in the Antarctic peninsula than at any time in the last 1,000 years, new research has shown.

    The evidence comes from a 364-metre ice core containing a record of freezing and melting over the previous millennium.

    Layers of ice in the core, drilled from James Ross Island near the northern tip of the peninsula, indicate periods when summer snow on the ice cap thawed and then refroze.

    By measuring the thickness of these layers, scientists were able to match the history of melting with changes in temperature.

    Lead researcher Dr Nerilie Abram, from the Australian National University and British Antarctic Survey (BAS), said: “We found that the coolest conditions on the Antarctic peninsula and the lowest amount of summer melt occurred around 600 years ago.

    “At that time temperatures were around 1.60C lower than those recorded in the late 20th century and the amount of annual snowfall that melted and refroze was about 0.5%.

    “Today, we see almost 10 times as much (5%) of the annual snowfall melting each year.

    “Summer melting at the ice core site today is now at a level that is higher than at any other time over the last 1,000 years. And while temperatures at this site increased gradually in phases over many hundreds of years, most of the intensification of melting has happened since the mid-20th century.”

    The mildly deranged penguin is not happy.

  206. blf says

    Progress. France’s legalization of gay marriage is very likely to be passed (despite a very noisy protest from the raping children cute and the other usual idiots). And, Ireland to hold gay marriage referendum:

    Convention set up to reform Irish constitution recommends that same-sex couples get full marriage equality

    Ireland is to hold a referendum on legalising gay marriage after a special convention set up to reform the Irish constitution recommended that same-sex couples in the republic be recognised in law.

    The convention voted 79% in favour of full equality for same-sex marriage in Dublin on Sunday.

    The convention was established by the Fine-Gael-Labour coalition to secularise much of the Irish constitution, which has given the Catholic church a great deal of power and influence in the state since its foundation.

    Writing about the so-called “evolution” by various USAlienstan cupcakes towards legalising gay mariage, Gary Younge, also in The Grauniad, shows why he’s one of my favourite writers:

    [W]ith a few exceptions, professional politicians have the spines of jellyfish. Their impulses are electoral not ethical. Far more adept at working out what is prudent than advocating what is principled, their political imagination can comprehend what is possible, but it rarely stretches to creating new possibilities. They do what they are forced to by people like [Madeline Davis, who in 1972 “…rose before the Democratic National Convention in Miami Beach and argued for legal protections for gay equality”], who organise and fight to make them do it. In the words of abolitionist Frederick Douglass: “Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never has and it never will.”

  207. birgerjohansson says

    Don’t cat moms lick the kittens genitals/bums to make them pee ?

  208. rq says

    I hope global warming stops for the sake of the MDP, but really, it would help if she stopped nuking everything from outer space.

    Yes and no. Husband buys the lottery tickets, but we never win (besides occasionally making back the ticket price). So maybe I should start buying them. ;)

  209. blf says

    [I]t would help if [the mildly deranged penguin] stopped nuking everything from outer space.

    No, no, not from outer space. In outer space. You know, pesky planets where herds of cheese don’t roam, or they raise peas, or are infested with hors— hum, perhaps you have a point.

  210. Walton says

    (e.g., he supports the UKIP — all you need to know about those nutters is they have(? had?) Monckton as their shadow Science Minister),

    They’re also disturbingly racist, and are benefiting politically from stirring up hatred against immigrants. I saw a UKIP billboard the other day saying “Stop open door EU immigration. Enough’s enough.” I guess they’re not even trying to hide their xenophobia any more. And these fuckers are actually getting votes. :(

  211. Ogvorbis, broken failure. says


    Yesterday I made chicken pot pie. With onions, garlic, sweet red peppers, asparagus, carrots and peas. Yes, peas. And I sprinkled some nice Welsh cheddar over the mashed potatoes used for the upper crust.

    Don’t nuke me, bro!

  212. blf says

    And then there’s this: Really? Little Red riding Hood?

    Apparently, yes. Good grief. Banned Books & Censorship (blog):

    Little Red Riding Hood
    Houghton-Mifflin version of the story was banned in two school districts of California because in “Red’s” basket a picture of a bottle of wine was found.

    … “In 1989, two California school districts banned Grimm’s Fairy Tales because Little Red Riding Hood carries food and wine in her basket to grandmother.” Having a picture of a bottle of wine is not something a person should be concerned about. “The reasoning cited concerns about inappropriate use of alcohol.”

    A newspaper report from 1990 adds:

    “It gives the younger ones the wrong impression about alcohol. If they should refrain, why give them a story saying it’s OK?” said Vera Jashni, assistant superintendent for instruction.

    Jashni, who ordered the ban, said it was the final paragraph of the story that sealed her decision – the part after the woodsman kills the Big Bad Wolf.

    “The grandmother drank some of the wine, and . . . after a while, the grandmother felt quite strong and healthy, and began to clean up the mess that the wolf had left in the cottage.”

    In a few minutes of quick searching, I have not been able to determine if either ban is still in effect, or if other school districts have also banned the book / edition.

  213. Beatrice (looking for a happy thought) says


    Yesterday I made chicken pot pie. With onions, garlic, sweet red peppers, asparagus, carrots and peas. Yes, peas. And I sprinkled some nice Welsh cheddar over the mashed potatoes used for the upper crust.

    Oh Bog. My lunch/dinner is still at least an hour and a half away and this sounds delicious.

  214. blf says

    …this sounds delicious.

    It contains peas. And chickens are stoopid enough to share barnyards &tc with horses. Also, the generic “Welsh cheddar” could be a form of British Industrial Cheddar™ — known to the rest of the world as Toxic Biohazardous Contamination and generally avoided. (Unfortunately, it’s not powerful enough to kill the peas.)

    Nuking from orbit is probably not sufficient. Or safe.


    For dinner last night I made a Gratin Dauphinois–Macaroni & Mozzarella di Bufala Cheese dish. No peas or horses. Unfortunately, no MUSHROOMS! or garlic either (it was thrown together from leftovers and none of those were leftover).

  215. Beatrice (looking for a happy thought) says

    Also, the generic “Welsh cheddar” could be a form of British Industrial Cheddar™ — known to the rest of the world as Toxic Biohazardous Contamination and generally avoided.

    Living in a country that doesn’t import cheddar (at least not to any stores I know), I will take almost any cheddar I can get. I did buy some abomination in Slovenia last time that could be descried as Toxic Biohazardous Contamination and I’m not falling for that one again. Unfortunately, that might mean no cheddar for me. :(

  216. chigau (違う) says

    Slow morning [Pharyngula Standard Time]*.
    Have the Overlords gone into hibernation?

    *I’m assuming We™ don’t do that daylightsavings crap.

  217. blf says

    I’m assuming We™ don’t do that daylightsavings crap.

    When One™ is the source of Enlightenment, what’s the fecking point?

  218. rowanvt says


    I use gauze squares. :P When I had my last dog, he would help potty the kittens for me. My current girl is afraid of babies and will run away from while doing the nervous drooling.

  219. rq says

    And it seeeems to meee
    You lived your life
    Like a caaanndle innn the winnnd…

    Sorry, wrong song? All this talk of candles, and Elton John came to mind.

  220. blf says

    I use gauze squares.

    Ohhhhh-kayyyyy, so you give the gauze squares to the Trebuchet ammo to piss on and then lick them?

  221. chigau (違う) says

    That’s a good song.
    As long as it’s the original not that other one.

    Parsnip doesn’t weigh enough to make good ammo.
    He needs to be fed and fattened for a while.
    I refuse to comment on the licking thing.

    ♩hooold me closer tiny da-a-ancer♫

  222. blf says

    Illegal food: step away from the cheese, ma’am (I added the hyperlink):

    The US has banned mimolette, a cheese from Lille made with mites. So what other foods are forbidden?

    Last week, the United States put a blockade on mimolette, the brightly colored orange cheese that traditionally hails from Lille. To refine the flavour of the cheese, mites are deliberately introduced, a practice that up until now has not caused a problem. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has claimed, however, that the tiny organisms could cause allergic reactions and halted the sale of Mimolette , outraging French producers and importers of the cheese in the US.

    The mildly deranged penguin is happy! This means there will be more of the stuff locally

    The article goes on to discuss other banned foods (not just cheese). Some more cheeses:

    [I]n the US the FDA has a strict ban on the import of unpasteurised, raw-milk cheese, less than 60 days old.

    In its final days, the Bush Administration placed a 300% duty on [Roquefort] cheese, essentially keeping it out of the American market.

    Because of food and hygiene regulations, [Casu marzu, a] traditional Sardinian sheep’s milk cheese containing live insect larvae was banned until recently by the European Union. But here’s where food culture reigns: the ban was lifted on the grounds that Casu marzu is a traditional food made using traditional methods.

    Cheny & Bush ][ banned (effectively) Roquefort!?!!1! Then they are not only genocidal warmongering kleptomaniac delusional creeps, but actually evil.

    (Yes, a serious comparison of Cheny & Bush ][‘s atrocities to a trade spat about cheese would be insulting to their victims.)

    Apparently, the 300% duty — it’s apparently no longer in effect — is in retaliation for the EU banning beef from USAlienstan stuffed full of hormones. Not sure if the horsemeat content was too high or too low.

    Also, nothing else which got an increased duty in that pointless round of tit-for-tatism, my pensis is longer than your’s-ism, had such a huge duty imposed. The obvious guess is that was extra “punishment” for being made by “cheese-eating surrender monkeys” (the sheer vindicative evilness of Cheny & Bush ][ is hard to understate).

  223. says

    The mildly deranged penguin is happy! This means there will be more of the stuff locally…

    I share this sentiment.

    So, I survived the day
    First class is a very intense gramar class. Lots of work, second class, I can’t tell yet, lecturer is not the best organized one. Last class, booooooooooooooooooooring. Composition for beginners. Don’t need it in the sense of education, but need it for the credits…

  224. blf says

    chigau, Apologies if I upset you (I am getting a sense that I might have from your comment @282).

    The mildly deranged penguin seems to agree with you. Starting flying lessons when extremely young doesn’t work very well. Besides being a bit lightweight — making the flight path difficult to predict — mom (even if an experienced flyer herself) seems to take considerable exception and will actually chase Her Penguinistaness. Well, try to chase… End result usually involves a pair of tights, some oatmeal, and a Ray Comfort CD. It ain’t pretty…

  225. Portia, worn out says


    You are so sweet. Thanks for the hugs.

    Beatrice,you said today would be better. *whiiiiiiiiiiiine*

    Thanks for the email, I’ll get one back to you once this day calms down :)

  226. rq says

    You see I’ve forgotten if they’re gree-eeeeen or they’re bluu-ooooooo
    [mumble mumble humhum hummm]
    What Iiiii real-ly mee-ean,
    Is yours are the sweeeee-test i-eyezzz… I-aaaaaaah’ve ever seeeen!

    *hugs* for everyone.
    I pruned the roses. A lot.
    I hope they survive (but the book said it was ok!).

  227. cicely (mumblemumble-SomethingHalf-Witty-mumblemumble) says

    Some Mad Science, from Animals Talking In All Caps.

    We now own my ass, free and clear!
    Yes, today saw the last payment on it, and we are no longer in partnership with the [redacted] Medical System on ownership. Okay, so it took all of the remainder of our tax refund, and it merely clears the decks for our shared ownership of The Husband’s Absence of Gall Bladder, but hey, at least we won’t be paying on both projects concurrently.

    rowanvt: *hugs*. How long will Parsnip be on such an intense feeding schedule?

    Giliell: *hug*. Mondays are shitty by nature. All we can do is ride them out.

    I don’t know if there is something in the air or what, but it’s apparently “feeling shitty” day all around.

    Monday. The Horses and the peas took control of it long ago; that’s the way They are—give ‘Em an inch, They’ll take 1/7th of the week.

    I can’t make heads or tails of this image: Racist theist eagle firefighters?

    Exaggeratedly-patriotic-to-the-point-of-caricature theist eagle firefighters?

    hooold me closer tiny da-a-ancer♫

    …and Prancer, and Vixen, and Comet, and Cupid♫….

  228. chigau (違う) says

    No no. Not upset at all (well maybe the licking thing)
    The MDP flies?
    That BBC thing was real?

  229. blf says

    That BBC thing was real?

    Sssshhhhhh!!!1! The penguins don’t like the word to get out…

  230. Portia, worn out says

    Woooo dentist had a cancellation and can see me tomorrow at a time when I don’t have three things scheduled! And a semi-local auto repair place can see me this afternoon. I just hope it’s not an expensive problem.

  231. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    Portia, I love your icon.

    I know I’ve been spamming the list with law school finals updates. Anyone who’s been to law school will tell you it’s a stress fest and that first year, and especially first year exams, are by far the hardest part of the very hard thing.

    Thanks for your patience. I will try not to try it.

    Which of course segues into ExamNews(tm):

    It’s 10am here & I don’t have to leave the house until Noon…and I slept for 3.5 hours last night… and I’m done.

    What the heck?

    I can’t decide whether to start in on property right now, or just have some OJ and a bagel. I feel like an Architeuthis at the surface!

  232. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    @ cicely:

    Belated congrats on your wheelchair. I remember what a big deal it was when I got my power chair. It wasn’t covered by insurance ‘cuz i can walk, but my bones were so bad I couldn’t get out of the house more than 2x a week. Ugh. Plus, y’know, it’s just fun to go outside. So I got it at a bad time, but kept it for spins in the park with my dog so I didn’t have to worry about how long she wanted to play, etc. etc. Used it for Walk for the Cure one year. Good times. Made an awesome difference in my life…until the joystick fritzed and I couldn’t get a new one. Oy.

    But all that is secondary to what I wanted to say which is: That link was F’n stellar. Great photoshop job, awesome way to bring it around to the inability to move one’s head at the end. Just amazing.


  233. says

    Evangelical Christian and Mormon groups that encourage adoption of infants from Africa and other countries have used religion as an excuse to break lots of ethical boundaries. Mother Jones has posted a new article that highlights the personal stories of some adoptees, and that also provides some details and statistics. As you might imagine, christians adopting children in order to “save” them turns out to be, all too often, a scam.

    The Mother Jones article focuses on evangelical christian adoption programs, but if anyone is interested I can provide links to similar abuses within mormon adoption programs.

    Home schooling in evangelical christian homes was not up to par.
    Black African children were required to do more household chores, farm work, construction, etc. than while children.
    There are cases of physical and sexual abuse.


    They didn’t attend school, either; home schooling mostly consisted of Serene reading to the younger children. When the older kids watched a school bus drive past on a country road and asked why they couldn’t go, they were met with various excuses. So Isaiah and Alfred worked with Sam in his house-painting business or labored in Nancy Campbell’s immense vegetable garden while CeCe, Kula, and Cherish cleaned, cooked, and tended to a growing brood of young ones. It was also the job of the “African kids,” as they called themselves, to keep a reservoir filled with water from the creek. CeCe hadn’t yet learned to read when Serene gave her a book on midwifery so she could learn to deliver their future babies. “They treated us pretty much like slaves,” she said. It’s a provocative accusation, but one that Kula and Isaiah—as well as two neighbors and a children’s welfare worker—all repeated.

    Discipline included being hit with rubber hosing or something resembling a riding crop if the children disrespected Serene, rejected her meals, or failed to fill the reservoir. For other infractions, they were made to sleep on the porch without blankets. Engedi, the toddler, was disciplined for her attachment to CeCe. To encourage her bond with Serene, the Allisons would place the child on the floor between them and CeCe and call her. If Engedi went to CeCe instead, the children recalled, the Allisons would spank her until she wet herself….

  234. Beatrice (looking for a happy thought) says


    I said tomorrow as in Tuesday :P
    And it will be better. It better be better or else…

  235. Ogvorbis, broken failure. says

    Oh Bog. My lunch/dinner is still at least an hour and a half away and this sounds delicious.

    It was delicious. Very good.

    Also, the generic “Welsh cheddar” could be a form of British Industrial Cheddar™ — known to the rest of the world as Toxic Biohazardous Contamination and generally avoided.

    Welsh Colliers Cheddar. Made in Wales.

    Sort of like spermecetti, I guess.


    For dinner tonight:

    Grilled pork tenderloin (smoked salt and brown sugar) with an apple butter glaze; asparagus baked in phylo with butter, Romano and Parmesan Reggiano cheese; and a salad with English cucumbers, sweet red peppers, sweet green peppers, sweet onions, red onions, chives and scallions (all diced together with a little salt, olive oil and red wine vinegar added).

  236. rowanvt says

    @Cicely- Parsnip has decided he eats better on a 3 hour schedule (a first from my kitten experiences, but he prefers it) for now. At a full 2 weeks old, he’ll be dropped to every 4 hours. Then every 5 at 3 weeks old and every 6 hours at 4 weeks old which is when weaning begins and will stay on the every 6 until fully weaned.

    But as he is currently only 4 days old, I have 10 more days of getting up every 3 hours. x_x

  237. rq says

    Crip Dyke
    Ditto what Portia said at 293.
    Your schedule sounds intense; if you have time for a breather, do it.

    I hereby present you with this Certificate of Ownership, to be filled out for Your Ass. Congratulations! :) *confetti&sparkles*


    re: Mondays
    I swear, Mondays are a time-warp or something. This is the third Monday in a row where I totally, completely lose track of time (not in a good way). I’m usually really good with knowing about what time it is/how long things take, but these Mondays… It’s like I turn around, and suddenly it’s after 6PM and I still have to feed Middle Child and Youngest (since Eldest and Husband are home only ~8.30PM due to piano lessons). Which is what I don’t understand – we’re less people at home, we do the same thing as any other day, and yet somewhere, I’m losing an hour or two. And I end up rushing the tail end of the day and feeling shitty for being unproductive*.

    *This does not apply to today; I pruned (most of) the roses, I took out the garbage, we did the grocery circuit, fed both children the requisite amount of times, got them asleep the requisite amount of time, did a small translation-correction job, read my book and got dinner done (not in order), so I’d say I’m pretty good for today. But it still took more time than (I thought) it should.
    The one thing I haven’t done is called the water supply people about that contract they were supposed to email me back, because I’m scared of them (irrationally) and I know we have to pay the water bill, and we can do it without the contract, but technically we need the contract, and we could sign the one that has the wrong Husband’s name on it, but I’d rather one with the correct name and I emailed them about it two weeks ago because it’s a hassle to actually go there (small rooms, large stroller, two children… yeah) and they haven’t even emailed me back… Somebody needs to kick me about this. [/unreasonablefears]

  238. cicely (mumblemumble-SomethingHalf-Witty-mumblemumble) says

    @Crip Dyke:
    Alas, I can only dream of a powered chair (lasers! shark-flingers! napalm-cannon! disintegration ray! serious force shielding! ), but it’s so nice to not be limited to places that provide chairage of some sort, while not having to worry that Insufficiently-Heavy-Duty Chair will abruptly suffer a Fatal Exception.
    And I agree with you in all respects about the link.
    :) :) :)

  239. Ogvorbis, broken failure. says

    I swear, Mondays are a time-warp or something.

    My Mondays, doubly so. Today is Saturday in the Ogvorbisverse. All you calendarist oppressors get to suffer through Monday today, but my Monday is not for another two days. Thppppt!

  240. rowanvt says

    Today is my Friday. :P I get two whole days off starting tomorrow in which to feed kitten, sleep, and stare at my snakes while demanding they hurry up and lay their eggs so I can feed them.

  241. Ogvorbis, broken failure. says

    Collier’s Powerful Welsh Cheddar? I recall that. Not British Industrial Cheddar at all.

    That’s the stuff. Excellent cheese.

    The mildly deranged penguin has just taken off…

    The cheese is currently sitting under a bowl of peas. Good luck with that.

  242. Ogvorbis, broken failure. says

    The mildly deranged penguin has just taken off…

    I just reread that.

    Erm, what was the MDP wearing, exactly, and what did she take off? Please be specific?

  243. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    So the guy’s car was outside the school this morning again. I spoke to the principal, and had mom forward her a copy of the police report, and they’re going to be handling it. In the mean time, I helped mom figure out a different route to take to drop daughter off on the days I have class the same time school starts for her.

    On an unrelated note, I want to send this to my mom but I’m pretty sure she’ll just Be Insulted instead of fucking learning from it.

  244. cicely (mumblemumble-SomethingHalf-Witty-mumblemumble) says

    I hereby present you with this Certificate of Ownership, to be filled out for Your Ass. Congratulations!

    :) :) :)

    So the guy’s car was outside the school this morning again.

    Do Not Want!
    :( :( :(

  245. Beatrice (looking for a happy thought) says


    Oh crap. I hope police and the school deal with him.

    Any news about Caine and her misbehaving pancreas?

  246. rq says

    Notify police he’s showing up still/again?
    I’m glad the principal sounds forthcoming, and also glad there’s an alternate route.
    But still… Ew. *hugs* if you should want!

  247. says

    Is Anton A Hall a.k.a. AssholeAtheist.com in here?

    If not, does anyone know anything about him? I’m debating him regarding the existence of rape culture on twitter right now and the character limit is a pain in my rear. But then given what I’m debating him on, I’m not sure if I should continue, or if anyone has experience that says I’m wasting my time…


  248. says


    There are cases of physical and sexual abuse.

    I would be amazed if there were cases where there wasn’t, given who we’re talking about. Something seriously needs to be done about those people.

    Ugh. *hugs*

    I had an interview this morning with Parking Enforcement, it seemed to go well, so hopefully something comes of that.

  249. Portia, worn out says

    Tentacles crossed for you.

    Yikes! I’m sorry you all have to deal with such threatening creepy behavior. I’m glad the school is proactive.

  250. rq says

    Not that I’m particularly creative, but I saw a bit of myself in the highly sensitive personality. Although, I would like to know the definition of unusual perceptions, as used in this sentence:

    All of the musicians reported some degree of unusual perceptions, especially relating to high sensory sensitivity.

  251. Ogvorbis, broken failure. says

    Crossposted on the Thunderdome:

    Two bombs at the finish line of the Boston Marathon.

  252. says

    Off to bed soon

    Crip Dyke
    My very best for exams (results)
    I know it’s fucking difficult to get any serious studying done when there’s kids around.

    Yay on wheelchair and paid bills.
    You showed the horses who’s the boss.

    Are you taking pictures?
    Sorry if I overread that, but it might be really important later to have evidence.

    Boston: Fuck. I hope the body-count stays at 3…
    But I make a prediction: There will be action taken. That would not happen if somebody had gunned down those people

  253. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    I had an interview this morning with Parking Enforcement, it seemed to go well, so hopefully something comes of that.

    I guess you do what you have to. ;/

    Good luck :)

  254. Ogvorbis, broken failure. says

    On a happier note: A new barbecue sauce:

    1 cup apple butter
    4 Tablespoons cider vinegar
    2 Tablespoons Worcestersheerschire shauce
    1/4 cup catsup (or ketchup, or kestup, or . . . )
    dash of garlic powder
    salt and black pepper to taste

    Heat in a saucepan until all is mixed thoroughly. I just had it on pork tenderloin in my first barbecue of season. Mmmmm.

  255. Portia, worn out says

    That’s it, Ogvorbis, I’m going to stop working and eat something.
    I’ve actually done enough work for long enough that I don’t feel guilty! Woo!

    Seriously though, that sounds amazing.

  256. says

    So there’s this cat, lives somewhere within a block of here, that thinks xe owns the neighborhood. Bully Cat decided to come in to our yard and give Gracie shit.

    I had the (dis)pleasure of walking right into the middle of a cat fight.

    Gracie’s okay — a little rattled, but okay.

  257. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Dang, trying to follow a Redhead recipe is playing Calvinball. I’m making a chicken paprikash from a recipe book we bought shortly after we were married. The chicken is cooking, and suddenly I hear “I usually use two peppers and two tomatoes”. The recipe calls for one of each, which were already added. Good thing I bought two peppers and two tomatoes….back to the chopping board…

  258. says

    So I just became a member of the board of a local nonprofit, taking over as volunteer coordinator, which puts me on the board mailing list. I just received an email from that list, regarding volunteers, with the following signature.

    In Yeshua, and For His Glory Only,
    The value of the individual is pictured by the cross, where the Almighty gave that which was most precious to Him for the life of another.

    I am distressed and annoyed, and uncertain of how best to respond.

  259. Ogvorbis, broken failure. says


    Is this a religious nonprofit, or secular? Is this religious statement in conformance with their mission statement, etc.?

  260. says

    Entirely secular, and it absolutely is not. It is currently located in a church, but that is a business arrangement; we rent space from them, and are currently seeking space elsewhere.

  261. Ogvorbis, broken failure. says


    Is there a national/statewide office you can contact about this inappropriate use of the charity’s name?

  262. says

    Hi IJoe! *hugs*. Sorry I’ve not been on the email, I’ve been kind of wrapped up in stuff at home.


    Is there a national/statewide office you can contact about this inappropriate use of the charity’s name?

    No, we’re it. The organization is a tool library, and we serve a particular area of town. There are similar organizations covering other areas of town, but there’s no actual affiliation between them; they’re all independent. We’re under the aegis of a larger group in the sense that we don’t have our own 501c[3] charter, so we’re under theirs. To clarify, there is organization related content in the email; the stuff I posted appears to be this person’s standard signature (Which also makes the email virtually unreadable, as it’s all in bold and in multiple colors.)

  263. mildlymagnificent says


    The introverts in her sample seemed adept at using introversion and extroversion in various facades to manipulate their appearances to the various circles of friends, acquaintances and others. As Grimes puts it, musicians were adept at “juggling multiple faces” (I really like this way of phrasing it!).

    I’m a bit surprised they didn’t look at similar work with other performers. I took a long time to realise, and many friends never worked out, that I used performance and public speaking roles as masks to hide behind. It’s extremely easy to be confident when it’s not _yourself_ doing it.

    As for that heightened sensitivity – as I recollect from far too many years ago, that was a part of those magic moments when everything just seemed perfect, a bit out of this world. A few differences in choral/chorus from solo performance but that might just be a function of what you concentrate on in the two environments.

  264. Ogvorbis, broken failure. says


    That was it for me. Shot my bolt. Sorry.


    Just helped Boy do his local taxes on line.

    Couldn’t find his w2

    Figured we could print out his tax form online from company A Online Service. Couldn’t find it. Spent 45 minutes on the phone with the help desk. They couldn’t find it. While on hold, went to company B Online Service and there it was.

    Took 3 minutes to file his taxes on line, including creating the account.

    Aaaaaaaaaaaargh!!!!!!!!! Sometimes I really am an idiot.

  265. Ogvorbis, broken failure. says

    And heading for bed. Wondering what nightmares this latest attack will bring.

    Hey, at least they probably won’t be scout related, right?

  266. Portia, worn out says

    *hugs* if you want them. Have some decaf earl grey to get you sleepy.
    : (

  267. chigau (違う) says

    Hugs Oggie.
    Sleep dreamless.

    I changed some of my passwords (at long last).
    But (of course) I keep forgetting them.
    Fortunately, my habit of using mild expletives with the occasional number and upper case substituted means I can find them again after a few trials.

  268. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    …And now, 2 exams remain.

    If I didn’t ace that exam, there’s no justice in criminal law.

  269. cicely (mumblemumble-SomethingHalf-Witty-mumblemumble) says

    *hugs* and a wish for sleep without nightmares for Ogvorbis.
    Heck, for everybody.

  270. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    So, I feel yucki about Boston – it’s home to a number of friends and even more families of freinds (don’t know how I keep picking up connections to there when I’ve never lived anywhere close to there). The ones that are closest to me are all accounted for, btw.

    So I feel a little weird posting this here, but my partner & I tell stories to the kids every night at bed time. We call the make-up stories. Well, I worked the Flying Spaghetti Monster into one a few weeks ago, and it seems to be slowly occupying more & more kid conversation space.

    And now?

    They just invented the Flying Yakisoba Monster.

    I :hearts: my kids

  271. chigau (違う) says

    yakisoba no hikou oni
    yakisoba’s flying demon

  272. Portia, worn out says

    That’s cute, CD : )

    (pssst…if you wanna make a ♥ it’s &hearts; :) )

  273. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    I heard about the bombing twenty minutes ago. I’m in the shop, crying, snot running out of my nose. And do you know the worse part? If someone were to walk in and see me they’re more likely than not to think that I’m being stupid about it. After all, I didn’t know anyone there and I’m on the other side of the fucking world. I hope that someday public displays of compassion are not thought distasteful, I won’t live to see that world I’m afraid.

  274. chigau (違う) says

    and by CripDyky, I hope you know I meant Crip Dyke.
    yes, the rum is helping.

  275. says

    You know you can let out all that compassion here.
    Compassion for your fellow humans should never be denigrated.
    I was in much the same boat when I heard about the explosions.
    I was at work trying to do some training of new employees. Hearing about the destruction, injuries and lives lost brought tears to my eyes.

    My heart goes out to all those injured, killed and their families.

  276. chigau (違う) says

    re: crying in the shop
    No man is an island entire of itself; every man
    is a piece of the continent, a part of the main;
    if a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe
    is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as
    well as any manner of thy friends or of thine
    own were; any man’s death diminishes me,
    because I am involved in mankind.
    And therefore never send to know for whom
    the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.

  277. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    Holy crap chigau, I’m ashamed to admit I’ve never read the whole thing. Thanks for that.

  278. chigau (違う) says

    If I were 10% as articulate as Fishy, I wouldn’t need to quote someone who died almost 400 years ago.

  279. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    Cross posted from the Boston terror thread:

    I don’t grieve for the dead, their pain and suffering is now past. I grieve for the living, all the living.

    I grieve for the ‘wounded’, there’s so much suffering packed into those two syllables. Physical pain, emotional trauma and years and years and years of suffering can come from surviving such a thing.

    I grieve for the uninjured bystanders. They have no shelter from the reality of the random dumb chance that meant they came away unbloodied. Their injuries will not be obvious to casual inspection.

    I grieve for the victim’s loved ones. They too will struggle to deal with this, and often their trauma will go unrecognised and unmitigated.

    I grieve for the first responders. At the end of the day they have to put down their tools, let slip the professional armor and somehow come to terms with human cost of all they’ve seen.

    The blast radius of these bombs radiates outwards far beyond the zone of shrapnel and flame, diminishing as it goes perhaps, but there’s no way to tell when and where the ripples and reflections will peak. The harm isn’t over, it’s only just beginning.

  280. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    I’m so fucking tired chigau. All I have is words and they can no more stop the bombs than prayers of the faithful. The best I can hope for is to amplify and disseminate the fact that there ARE good people in the world. That these hateful destroyers, and the inevitable compassionless assholes who will twist these events to further their own harmful agendas are a shrieking, roaring, minority. But that’s not enough, it’s never fucking enough. This burden I place upon myself is unrealistic, and truth be told, there *is* more I could be doing that I’m not, concrete, realistic things,. I fucking hate this. Okay, I’m going to go and work now, I’ll don my reading glasses and a focus close on greasy hands and recalcitrant bike parts. I’ll be alright. I’ll be better than anyone who suffered injury or loss in Boston today. May you all be well, may your loved ones be well and may tomorrow see a flourishing of unexpected hope.

  281. chigau (違う) says

    Words have Power.
    Keep on doing what you do.
    *hugs* and hand-cleaner

  282. glodson says

    Just ran into a “Pro-life” atheist on another blog. Can’t wait to here how this person makes arguments for robbing a woman of her bodily autonomy. So far, this person is proving to be a tone trolling asshole.

  283. says

    @ Tony

    (I also wonder how SGBM is doing)

    SGBM is keeping well: “just spending more time offline than usual”. I am sure a little heresy will be all that is required to invoke the ever expanding shadow of a Boltzmann Brontosaurus above one’s noggin.

  284. rq says

    mildlymagnificent @333
    Yes, what you say about the public face – I think it was in grade 10 when I discovered that I could fake it well enough for people to believe me (believe that I was social). It was exhausting, sometimes, and I know at parties, I’d last about an hour and then I’d have to take a walk on my own just to get re-settled and replace the outgoing persona. Strangely, I joined the debating club before I’d realized this, so I may have already been processing these things subconsciously.
    And what you say about music… It would be interesting to hear about other branches of music (classical, choral, etc.), because I still find myself getting lost (in a good way) in certain passages/pieces from all genres of music. Although in some way, I think it’s more accepted for classical musicians (pianists, violinists) to be outwardly more introverted (classical music being an intellectual exercise) that there may be less of that doubling in characteristics. Conductors, on the other hand… At the same time, though, they’re putting so much of themselves emotionally out on the stage for the audience, which is extroversion at its most extroverted (is that how they would classify it?).


    Husband’s ‘shy’ friend is coming for a visit, finally. He always ‘just stops by’, and ends up chatting with Husband for half an hour… outside. I/we ask him to come in, but he’s all like ‘nono I have to go’ and then it’s another 20 – 25 minutes. You know how that feels? It feels like ‘I don’t want to talk to your wife’ to me. And if he wants to talk to Husband alone, that’s great (by all means), but it’s a bit hurtful when (a) it’s never phrased/presented like that (just stopping by for a minute!); (b) it’s rarely a particularly convenient moment for us (once we were literally packing up the car and kids to head out of town and I ended up doing everything about twice as long as it should have taken); and (c) it’s always excused as ‘he’s just shy’ (socially inept, anyone?).
    But I think he’s actually coming inside for coffee this time. I’m pretty sure it’s only because we live outside of the city; if we were still in town, it would be the same old routine of no-I-won’t-come-in-but-I-will-talk-for-a-long-time. This is a Big Event. ;)
    [/whinging for no good reason]

  285. ednaz says

    Being neither learned nor eloquent
    I will simply say
    Hugs and ♥ for everyone tonight

  286. blf says

    Arrggghhhh!!!1! Parents need to know homeopathy does not protect against measles, says MP:

    The GP and Conservative MP Sarah Wollaston is calling on homeopathy’s governing bodies to make it clear to parents that their alternative remedies will not protect children from measles outbreaks.

    Large numbers of children have not had the MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) vaccine, largely because of the scare that followed the publication of research by Andrew Wakefield in the Lancet medical journal in 1998 that postulated a link between the jab and autism. The research was later discredited and Wakefield was struck off by the General Medical Council for fraud.

    In Wollaston’s constituency of Totnes, Devon, the concern generated by Wakefield lingers on and is part of the reason, she believes, for a general distrust of vaccines and a reliance on homeopathy — remedies that are almost entirely water. [No, they are entirely water!]

    About 70% of five-year-olds in Totnes were fully protected against measles last year, she said on her blog, compared with 94% of those in Brixham, just miles away.

    “Some parents have an unshakeable belief that homeopathy boosts their child’s immune system. They would rather put their faith in ‘natural’ methods, as they see it,” she told the Guardian.

    The British Homeopathic Association and Faculty of Homeopathy said… “There is no evidence to suggest homeopathic vaccinations can protect against contagious diseases. We recommend people seek out the conventional treatments,” a spokesman said.

    There are currently about 700 cases and suspected cases of measles in Wales, the biggest outbreak since the triple jab was launched in 1988. An estimated 40,000 children in Wales have not had the MMR, and special catch-up NHS clinics have been held for two weekends in a row in the worst-affected Swansea area.

    Kudos to the quack group for acknowledging that water isn’t an effective vaccine. (I omitted the text where they went on to blame the problem on rogue quacks.) What I have no idea about — albeit there may be something at Bad Science or the quack-watching site whose name now escapes me — is whether or not any of quacks say, on their websites / ads, that water is effective. There was an incident with Malaria treatment(? prevention?) some years ago where individual quacks insisted water was effective despite, as I now recall, at least one of the quack groups insisting none of their quacks would ever say that. It would not surprise me if a similar-ish sort of lying is going on here.

  287. rq says

    You? Not eloquent?

    But you see, homeopathy works – my friend said so! Her daughter’s urinary tract infection was cleared up in two whole months using homeopathy, and all conventional chemical medications did not work at all!
    (And then the whole family came down with whooping cough, but that’s a whole other story. Chose drugs for that one.)

  288. says

    Good morning
    Yay for the friend finally coming for a real visit
    But I, too, had to learn that probably it’s not about me but about them.

    Small rant
    New media are changing our lives rapidly and one of the things is that we’re suddenly expected to be available 24/7 When I started college few people had internet at home, so when class was over for the day the lecturer had to wait until the next week. Now they send you a mail at 7 pm which you read at 11pm but they still expect you to have the shit printed and prepared at 10am the next morning. There is no real free time anymore.

    Good thing
    The new “get dressed, get a dinosaur” routine is working out really well. Mornings have become a lot better

  289. blf says

    Nutters vs. nutters, Round twenty-something zillions, Nigerian Christian group threatens retaliation over Islamist attacks:

    Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta says it will launch terror campaign ‘in defence of Christianity’

    Nigeria could face a battle between rival terrorist groups after Christian militants threatened to attack Muslim targets in response to bombings carried out by the Islamist group Boko Haram.

    The Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (Mend), the umbrella body of armed groups in Nigeria’s oil-rich Niger Delta, said it would launch a new terror campaign “in defence of Christianity”.

    “The bombings of mosques, hajj camps, Islamic institutions, large congregations in Islamic events and assassinations of clerics that propagate doctrines of hate will form the core mission of this crusade,” the Mend spokesman Jomo Gbomo said in an emailed statement.

    “There is some precedent for attacks against Muslims in southern Nigeria,” said Adunola Abiola, founder of Think Security Africa. “And although there are real questions about whether Mend have the capability and the networks to carry out the attacks they are threatening now, it’s worth remembering that this is not just a group confined to the Niger Delta – they have operated in Lagos and Abuja before.”

    This most be highly sophisticated theology since I totally fail to understand it.

  290. Walton says

    55 killed and more than 300 injured in bomb attacks in Iraq.

    A string of bombings across Iraq has claimed at least 55 lives, injuring 300 more, on Monday. The surge in violence comes barely a week ahead of Iraq hosting elections for the first time since US withdrawal from the country.

    Officials said bombings hit 12 different areas, leaving 55 people dead and making Monday the country’s deadliest day since March 19, AFP reported.

    The capital Baghdad and the surrounding area have seen 10 casualties, while the oil-rich Kirkuk, where tensions over resources have particularly spiked, has lost nine of its residents. The western Sunni city of Fallujah, the former Al-Qaeda stronghold of Baqouba and Saddam Hussein’s hometown of Tikrit, also sustained attacks.

    Most of Monday’s deadly explosions were car bombings, including two blasts at Baghdad airport.

    “Two vehicles managed to reach the entrance of Baghdad airport and were left parked there. While we were doing routine searches, the two cars exploded seconds apart. Two passengers travelling to the airport were killed,” a police source said, cited Reuters.

  291. Nick Gotts (formerly KG) says

    The British Homeopathic Association and Faculty of Homeopathy said… “There is no evidence to suggest homeopathic vaccinations can protect against contagious diseases or indeed anything else. We recommend people seek out the conventional treatments, since we now realize and concede that homeopathy is a parcel of worthless woo-woo. The British Homeopathic Association and Faculty of Homeopathy will be dissolved as soon as they can wind up their affairs.” a spokesman said.

    Suggested amendments in bold.

  292. blf says

    The Everyday Sexism Project: a year of shouting back:

    When I first set up a website to collate women’s routine experiences of prejudice and harassment, I didn’t expect to receive so many horror stories — nor so much hate mail — Jane Martinson

    When I started the Everyday Sexism Project a year ago, I never imagined that by now it would have attracted some 25,000 entries and be about to spread to 15 countries. Nor even that I’d be writing about it in the Guardian — or that this would be the latest in a chain of articles that has encompassed the Times of India, Gulf News, Grazia South Africa, the Toronto Standard, French Glamour and the LA Times.

    A schoolgirl and a widow reported being pressured and pestered for sex. A reverend in the Church of England was repeatedly asked if there was a man available to perform the wedding or funeral service: “nothing personal”. A man was congratulated for “babysitting” his own children. A 14-year-old schoolgirl wrote: “I am constantly told I can’t be good at things because I’m a girl. That I need to get back in the kitchen. That all I’m good for is cleaning, cooking, and blowjobs.” A DJ explained how constant harassment and groping had made her dread the job she once loved.

    And the huge success of the project wasn’t the only thing I didn’t anticipate. One of the earliest entries read: “You experience sexism because women are inferior in every single way to men. The only reason you have been put on this planet is so we can fuck you.” The message ended: “Please die.” The sheer level of vitriol took me by surprise, as hate-filled missives poured in, ranging from graphic descriptions of domestic violence to threats of torture, death and rape.

    But as the threats worsened, I discovered the most incredible support network. Anyone who describes feminism as an in-fighting, back-biting movement has clearly never been as lucky as I was, at those lowest moments, to discover in it the strength and kindness, advice and support of so many other women and men. …

    Success stories began to pour in. In their own ways, women started to fight back. One runner, sick of catcalls and wolf whistles, started making her own “honk if you love feminism” T-shirts. A woman tired of cold-callers asking to speak to “the man of the house” started putting them on to her six-year-old son, who’d sing: “I’m sexy and I know it.” …

    The mildly deranged penguin suggests offering every misogynistic nutter a packet of dried cooties.

  293. Nick Gotts (formerly KG) says

    Thanks Walton@369 – good to see you posting! Of course, Iraq is a haven of peace and tranquility compared to neighbouring Syria, where there’s a clamour* for “western intervention” a.k.a. another neo-colonialist adventure in the Middle East, even more dangerous than Iraq.

    *I was going to say “growing clamour”, but thought I’d better check my impression that it is growing. I started putting “time to intervene in Syria” into a well-known search engine, but had only got as far as “time to inter” when Prof. Google completed the phrase for me. But looking at the dates on articles, calls for intervention seem to have come in waves – roughly one last June-July, one October-December, and one February-April this year.

  294. Walton says

    Nick: Good to see you too.

    On another note, I have to concede that back in 2010 you were right about the Tories, and I was wrong. Not only have they been systematically dismantling the welfare state and making things worse for the poorest people in Britain, they’ve also been fighting a war on immigrants. Theresa May’s anti-immigrant rhetoric is becoming terrifying. And yet no one in the British media is talking about the death of Jackie Nanyonjo, or all those who have died in immigration detention centres recently.

  295. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    I am sure a little heresy will be all that is required to invoke the ever expanding shadow of a Boltzmann Brontosaurus above one’s noggin.



  296. blf says

    Turkish composer and pianist convicted of blasphemy on Twitter:

    Fazil Say describes verdict as ‘sad for Turkey’ after being given suspended 10-month prison sentence for series of tweets

    A Turkish court has convicted pianist and composer Fazil Say of blasphemy and inciting hatred over a series of comments he made on Twitter last year.

    The 43-year-old went on trial in October accused of denigrating Islam in a series of tweets earlier last year. In one message he retweeted a verse from a poem by Omar Khayyám in which the 11th-century Persian poet attacks pious hypocrisy: “You say rivers of wine flow in heaven, is heaven a tavern to you? You say two huris [companions] await each believer there, is heaven a brothel to you?” In other tweets, he made fun of a muezzin (a caller to prayer) and certain religious practices.

    [Turkey’s prime minister, Recep Tayyip] Erdogan and his government have been accused of wanting to dismantle Turkish secularism and of curbing freedom of expression. In a report published at the end of last month, Amnesty International called the lack of freedom of speech in Turkey one of the country’s “most entrenched human rights problems”.

    If he’d pointed out that the stripper factories and beer volcanoes are a tavern and brothel, would he have been prosecuted for “blaspheming” the FSM? Or does that only happen to people who put peas in their pasta sauce?

  297. blf says

    Looks like you don’t have to wait until you go kaput for your huri, just “marry” one for a month: Wealthy Muslim married men’s sex tourism. Virgins only.. I’d never heard of that practice, but apparently there’s been a recent case where the slavegirl ran away and spoke out, Teenager exposes India’s ‘one month wives’ sex tourism:

    A 17-year-old girl has exposed the scale of Islamic sex tourism in India where Muslim men from the Middle East and Africa are buying ‘one month wives’ for sex.

    Campaigners for Muslim women’s rights said while short term ‘contract marriages’ are illegal in India and forbidden in Islam, they are increasing in Hyderabad, in southern India, where wealthy foreigners, local agents and ‘Qazis’ — government-appointed Muslim priests — are exploiting poverty among the city’s Muslim families.

    The victim, Nausheen Tobassum, revealed the scale of the problem when she escaped from her home last month after her parents pressurised her to consummate a forced marriage to a middle aged Sudanese man who had paid around £1,200 for her to be his ‘wife’ for four weeks.

    She told police she had been taken by her aunt to a hotel where she and three other teenager girls were introduced to a Sudanese oil company executive. The ‘groom’, Usama Ibrahim Mohammed, 44 and married with two children in Khartoum, later arrived at her home where a Qazi performed a wedding ceremony.

    … The wedding certificate came with a ‘Talaknama’ which fixed the terms of the divorce at the end of the groom’s holiday.

    “The next day he came to the house of the victim girl and asked her to participate in sex but she refused. She is a young girl and the groom is older than her father,” Inspector Kumar said.

    Her parents reassured him they would persuade their daughter and told her she would be punished if she did not. Instead she ran out of their tiny one room home in Hyderabad’s Moghulpuri neighbourhood and was rescued by a police patrol. The police arrested the groom, the victim’s aunt and the Qazi, and issued a warrant for her parents’ arrest — Nausheen is a minor under Indian law and cannot marry until she reaches 18. Her parents are now in hiding but will be charged…

    “If a Sudanese wants to have sex, he has to pay three times more (in Sudan) because there are far fewer girls there, or he takes a second wife. In India the girls are coming for a cheaper rate and they are beautiful. Even if they are only staying for a few days they are doing this kind of illegal marriages for sex,” [Inspector Kumar] said.

    Charming. I suppose yer average wingnut would be Ok with this, as it’s between one man and one “woman”. Girl. Child.

  298. rq says

    I know it’s not about me, but it just feels really rude. And I’m annoyed that I’m annoyed at this friend, because he’s one of Husband’s friends who I’ve actually liked all along.
    But I guess the world isn’t exactly revolving around me. Slowly getting that message.


    In better news, the sun is out in force again today (+23 degrees in the sunshine! Actual air temperature closer to 15, still decent) and I managed to rake most of the yard (the parts reasonably dry or not under snow, that is – this is sort of what it looks like now).
    Sowed some radishes and basil with Middle Child, mostly experimentally – the package says ‘from March’ but it may still be too early in the season. (Radishes are hardy!, I keep telling myself. So is basil!) We’ll see.

  299. rq says

    re: 379
    The monkey video at the bottom has video proof for why apes became bipedal.
    You can’t carry a drink on all fours.

  300. rq says

    Nope, birgerjohansson, I’m pretty sure only Gollum would be coming to reclaim his cave, and since he fell into a volcano in Iceland, I think the divers are ok.

  301. Anri says

    “I really love the fact that clicking on topic links makes pop-up ads appear!” – said no-one, ever.

    I understand that banner ads are just the way things are, and I don’t mind them. But I’m smart enough (barely) to click on ads I’m interested in, I don’t need them opening up anything at all. I especially don’t need ads opening windows when I click on blog content instead.
    Any chance we could go back to ads that just, yanno, advertised?


  302. blf says

    Top 10 TV aliens: “Do you know your Medusans from your Zygons? Your Gorn from the Volge? And just how scary were the Zanti Misfits? …[W]e take a look back at the good, the bad and downright obscure of TV aliens”.

    No peas or horses.

  303. blf says

    This is really, really, good, A Point of View: Science, magic, and madness:

    Galileo was a great scientist partly because he wasn’t afraid to admit when he was wrong, argues Adam Gopnik, who only wishes some of the people who write to him could do the same.

    When you write for a living, over time you learn that certain subjects will get set responses. You’re resigned to getting the responses before you write the story.

    If you write something about Shakespeare, you will get many letters and emails from what we call the cracked (and I think you call the barking), explaining that Shakespeare didn’t write the plays that everyone who was alive when he was, said he had.

    Now these letters and emails come more often from the half-bright, some of them professional academics, than from the fully bonkers or barking.

    You can tell the half-bright from the barking because the barking don’t know how little they know, while the half-bright know enough to think that they know a lot, but don’t know enough to know what part of what they know is actually worth knowing.

    Not long ago, for instance, I wrote an essay about the great Galileo, and the beginnings of modern science. I explained, or tried to, that what made Galileo’s work science, properly so-called, wasn’t that he was always right about the universe (he was very often wrong) but that he believed in searching for ways of finding out what was right by figuring out what would happen in the world if he wasn’t.

    The glory of modern science is that, while only a very few can understand its particular theories, anyone can understand its peculiar approach — it is simply the perpetual assertion of experience over authority, and of debate over dogma.

    Go read the whole thing. Now.
    (Found via Bad Science.)

  304. John Morales says


    Any chance we could go back to ads that just, yanno, advertised?

    If only there were a way of disabling pop-ups and redirects on browsers!

  305. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    @Chigau, #343:

    ZOMG, that’s Sooooooo Perfect!!!!

    I got them the book Tasty Baby Belly Buttons a long time back, and they love it. The Red onis chasing when they hear children’s laughter or happy noises and the green onis when they hear children angry or crying. Now both big little and littlelittle play games with inventing all kinds of *new* onis that chase after you and try to eat your belly button for entirely different reasons…and some onis that do entirely new things, like “hug”.

    So they are already familiar with oni as a concept. Yakisoba no hikou oni will make a lovely addition to the collection.

    BTW: “hikou” pronounced “Hee Koo? or something else?

    @ Portia:
    ♥ you for the ♥ lesson.

  306. carlie says

    “Swedish divers in shock underground cave find”

    My reaction to watching the video of them swimming through the underground tunnels: “NO NO NO GOD NO MAKE IT STOP NO NO ARGH NO”

    That was worse that watching the videos of walking El Camino del Rey and tower climbing.

  307. rq says

    I watched the beginning and I thought to myself, I could do El Camino… crawling, but I could do it.
    But I realize that I couldn’t. Not in the state it’s in now, probably not ever.

    (How long until there’s a theory about how it was a special walkway built by aliens for weird ritual purposes? See, it’s that kind of perfectly human technological feat that gets idolized by posterity…)

  308. Beatrice (looking for a happy thought) says

    El Camino… I think I could do it. Or at least try. The worst that can happen is that I fall to my death. No biggie.

    Diving through underground tunnels? Having those walls suddenly start closing around me, while I slowly choke to death in panic or start flaying around and injure myself on the walls while I’m slowly choking to death after I knocked off/used the oxygen? No thanks. I’ll pass. Really. At least El Camino del Rey looks amazing (and open, lots of open space good).

  309. rq says

    I, on the other hand Beatrice, could do the underwater caves easily. I love water and under-water. It’s the heights that get me, in the end.

  310. says

    I’ve been reading all the posts about the Boston bombing, and I posted one comment in PZ’s latest offering, but in general I don’t have anything to add. I called my daughter that lives in NY to check on all of our friends and relatives in the northeastern states. She followed everyone on Facebook and was able to report that no one in our immediate circle was injured. Still, I cried. It’s just so frustrating to see that much stupidity in action.

    On another subject, The New York Times posted an article today about a nonpartisan review that concludes:

    “it is indisputable that the United States engaged in the practice of torture” and that the nation’s highest officials bore ultimate responsibility for it.

    Cheney and Bush are still semi-hiding from this truth. They ought to be in jail.

  311. Beatrice (looking for a happy thought) says

    Oh Bog, as if I needed another reason to be scared of seeking professional help for depression.

    The guy who managed to get himself a position of head of the Psychiatry department in our largest medical facility believes in possession (Hitler was obviously possessed), and of course exorcism.
    That‘s one of our leading psychiatrists.

    This “scientist” approves of faith healing too. *spits*

  312. Beatrice (looking for a happy thought) says


    I like and hate swimming in the sea. The feel of the water is amazing, but having that large dark nothing under and around me is a bit scary. If I start thinking about it, I can “feel” something brushing against my leg or “see” something from the corner of my eye.

  313. says

    A bit of good news: scouting troops that welcome gay members are growing. I think they will eventually succeed in breaking the hold that the Boy Scouts of America have on scouting. In some states, mormon-oriented troops have degraded Boy Scout troops enough that, even without the despicable campaign against gays, those troops should have been disbanded long ago.
    Gay-Friendly Scouting Organization Doubles Its Numbers in One Year</i?


    The Boy Scouts of America (BSA), which discriminates against gay scouts, atheists, and families who want to put their sons and daughters in the same scouting program, has seen its membership plummet in the last decade. Many former scouts have left scouting altogether. But a number of families fed up with BSA policies have found Navigators USA—a small organization that “welcomes all people…no matter what gender, race, lifestyle, ability, religious or lack of religious belief” and has seen its chapters (comparable to Boy Scout troops) double in the last year….

  314. cicely (mumblemumble-SomethingHalf-Witty-mumblemumble) says

    Today’s Pop Culture Shock Therapy.

    “Swedish divers in shock underground cave find”

    Always check for Magic, first; then check for Traps, second! Only then should you consider entering a surprise cave—no telling what the surprise may be!

    Peas Bad.
    Words to live by.
    They sometimes lurk in caves, y’know.

    carlie, you cannot make me click on those links. Again.
    The first time was enough; I’m convinced.

  315. Beatrice (looking for a happy thought) says

    I just realized that we don’t have any more peas, the last went into the risotto on Sunday. O.O
    Frozen peas added to the shopping list. Thanks for reminding me, blf & cicely!

  316. Hekuni Cat, MQG says


    Always check for Magic, first; then check for Traps, second! Only then should you consider entering a surprise cave—no telling what the surprise may be!

    Words to live by.

  317. rq says

    WARNING: bit of a link dump.

    How the Boston Marathon tragedy revealed the best side of social media

    This is only cool if the dolphins have lasers attached.

    A thoughtful perspective on the Thatcher grave-dancers.

    Some of the butterflies I hope to see this summer.

    Analysis of the Chelyabinsk meteor continues.

    Knitters: anyone want to knit me this hat? I’ll pay you – yarn+labour+shipping

    And for anyone who needs the help, this is what I look like when I hold thumbs for you (yes, it’s a repeat because it’s cute!).

  318. cicely (mumblemumble-SomethingHalf-Witty-mumblemumble) says

    Beatrice: Don’t thank me; when the treacherous little green bastards get you—as, of course, they will—I want it understood that I am not in any way complicit in your mushy demise.
    I do not ally with peas or Horses.

    Hekuni Cat:

    Words to live by.

    *nodding vigorously*
    Yep. Unless you have a reeeeeally unimaginative DM.
    Also, of course, have your saves pre-calculated.

  319. says

    Home sweet fucking home
    Tuesdays are not for those faint of heart because they basically mean that I’m 13 hours on the run.
    Oh, I was home in between college and work for like 45 minutes to pick up the kids’ stuff (they’re sleeping at their gran’s) and work.
    Now a shower, the laundry, finding out where I have to be tomorrow, then bed

  320. Portia, worn out says

    *hugs* Giliell. Congrats on getting through that day.

    I want a nap now. No time..

    Josh, tell me that’s not actually trending. Please.
    Fucking fuckheads.
    Pressure cookers have a purpose that is not limited to killing things.

  321. Pteryxx says

    Nah, nothing will come of it. The Big Pressure Cooker Industry will just ramp up their glossy advertising so hobbyist pressure cooker collectors can feel good about themselves. (A very few might actually learn to use them for canning!)

  322. Portia, worn out says

    It’s really insensitive of pressure cooker control advocates to use this tragedy to push their political agenda.

    Oh, wait. That one’s not even snark.

  323. Josh, Official SpokesGay says

    I’m totally trolling, sorry that wasn’t clear! Thing is, it wouldn’t surprise me because we are, in fact, that fucking stupid. And it would sail along with none of the angst over gun control, I’m sure.

    As a proud pressure cooker owner, they’ll get mine from my warm, tender-cooked dead hands.

  324. Portia, worn out says

    Oh, I didn’t think you were proposing it, Josh. I was unclear. I was just incredulous that people would satirize the issue like that, the damn day after. It sounded like what it was, conservaturd gun nut satire. I was just hoping you hadn’t gotten it from real conservaturds. Twitter dashed my hopes.

  325. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    I’m actually sympathetic to a certain use of the “ban pressure cookers now” satire. It’s not b/c I think there’s at all a comparison with guns. The comparison is with the things that TSA does, banning all liquids b/c liquids were used in one attack. There really is an authoritarian control response that needs to be satirized and fought.

    Of course, I’m insulated enough that when I saw that, I reacted with glee looking for lefties lampooning gov’t security excess. Instead I get NRA types who think banning nail clippers in checked luggage is great, but banning guns from checked luggage is a tremendous violation of their 2nd amendment rights. They wen’t and got a permit for that gun and everything. They’re permitted for F’s sake. Don’t you realize that any yahoo can buy a nail clipper?

    Sigh. Sometimes I wish that my worst imagination of how bad the world could possibly be was actually the floor for how bad the world could possibly be.

  326. Portia, worn out says

    Well, notice they’re not calling for the ban of gun powder, which was the actual incendiary material involved.

  327. says

    As I was growing up my mother often used a pressure cooker to prepare meals. We were so poor that we didn’t have indoor plumbing. That pressure cooker was often cooking beans, a cheap and nutritious part of our diet. One day, the cooker blew up. I was about five years old, entrusted with the task of feeding my baby brother. I swear my mother grabbed the baby out of the highchair, and picked me up to rush out of the kitchen before the sound of the explosion had dissipated. From the other room we peeked around the corner to survey the damage. The ceiling was covered in beans. The lid had blown off, but otherwise the pressure cooker was intact.

    I thought then that I would avoid pressure cookers for the rest of my life. I didn’t know that bomb makers could force pressure cookers onto any of us.

    In other news: “The Excel Error Heard Round the World” — We all know that Paul Ryan and various other Republicans have used faulty or questionable statistics, math, and logic to promote fucking insane budget plans. Well, now it turns out that some of the stupidity related to economic predictions can be traced back to a couple of fools who do not know how to code an Excel spreadsheet.


    [Economists] Reinhardt and Rogoff made a coding error in an Excel spreadsheet. Kevin Drum called it the “Excel Error Heard Round the World.” (I think Kevin means that literally, since the Reinhardt/Rogoff study has helped bolster the austerity agenda in a wide variety of countries.)

    …according the Reinhardt/Rogoff research, once a nation’s debt-to-GDP ratio tops 90%, the result is economic contraction. The revised research based on the same data points to 2.2% growth. It is, in other words, an enormously consequential error.

    Paul Krugman added that plenty of sensible people “never bought” the argument in the first place, because “the observed correlation between debt and growth probably reflected reverse causation.” He added, “But even I never dreamed that a large part of the alleged result might reflect nothing more profound than bad arithmetic.” …

  328. Josh, Official SpokesGay says

    Let me be clear. I made that up for pure snark. I know off no one actually proposing banning pressure cookers, but I wouldn’t be shocked.

  329. rq says

    Why is it that, whenever a child (a sample child, not a specific child) is mentioned in a text, it is referred to in the female pronoun? (Babies sometimes get the male pronoun.) [/partlyrhetorical]
    *Based on personal observations of children mentioned in official and unofficial texts and not to be considered as a sweeping statement indicting absolutely all official and unofficial texts out there.

  330. Josh, Official SpokesGay says

    modern pressure cookers do not explode in the kitchen.they just don’t.period. Its an obsolete myth from Ann older time and long gone appliances.they are popular the world over. Its only Americans that go nuts about them. This is not going to help.

  331. rq says

    And wow. Apparently, just cleaning the CD can fix it and stop the skipping.
    Although the victory is bittersweet… This means I have no more excuse to keep from playing those particular children’s songs ad nausem every. single. evening.
    With this cheerful thought, I am to bed.

    Good night to all, I hope my potential 405 comes out of moderation, and *hugs* for those in need, together with commiseration or congratulation, as appropriate.

  332. says

    Josh @421

    modern pressure cookers do not explode in the kitchen.they just don’t.period.

    My experience of the flying pressure cooker lid, plus the bean-strewn ceiling might be considered pre-modern since my mother’s kitchen equipment was all ancient. However, I postulate that she may have just failed to seat the lid properly, and/or the pressure-relief valve was defective. I was too young at the time to investigate.

    I remember my mother cleaning beans off the ceiling. That must have been quite a chore, but I remember thinking it quite entertaining.

  333. Portia, worn out says

    Just went to the hometown dentist. I feel so happy I could cry. He didn’t charge me at all to drill off the rough spot made by the chip I put in my tooth*. Money is stressing me out this week ($315 to get the car fixed, yuck), and his kindness is such a relief. I mean, he spent 5 minutes on it, but still. He has expertise and tools and staff and everything and he just decided to be nice. (Probably helps that he knows my family and whatnot).

    Entertainingly, his receptionist told me when people talk to her about the new lawyer in town, they call me by my mother’s name, and she has to correct them. :) I told her it’s a good thing I like my mom so much, because that happens a lot with how much I look like her.

    *The chip was so tiny that he just smoothed out the bottom of my top front teeth a tiny bit. (Which was actually good because I have long front teeth and the unchipped one was sort of rounded at the bottom. Win-win!) The original chip was totally not obvious to the casual observer, and now the irregularity is all but imperceptible. I can feel a rough spot with my tongue, but it’s not sharp like it was before. More nail file on my tongue than “take off three layers of paint” sandpaper. And no fractures in the tooth (which I expected, given that it was a very low-force impact). I’m so relieved. I feel so lucky to have access to a local practitioner who cares about me as a person and is so kind and fair and good.

  334. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    Rock on, Portia. Good for the dentist and lucky for you.

    Back to property. This ist he exam I’m going to fail if I’m going to fail any of them. Property is just … not my thing.

  335. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    Yeah. Sigh. I’m not even studying productively ‘cuz I gotz the nurrvvzzz.

    also, I hate it when I have to do this:

    Property is just … not my thing.

    see what I did there?

    Gallows humor, I hate it when it passes unnoticed, but perhaps that’s my poor execution?

  336. Portia, worn out says

    Ha. Sorry I missed it. :)

    I presume there’s a curve. I also know you’re damn smart. You feel like you don’t know enough property, but everyone else knows less. (It’s Machiavellian, but we both know it’s how to get through this). You can do this. I have confidence in you.

  337. otrame says

    Need something to cheer you up? How about Michael Voris (man voted “Worst Hair on the Internet” 3 years in a row) lamenting the decline of Real, True Catholicism.

    Now, mind you, this is the guy who thinks that a Catholic Monarchy is the only way to go, so he is a raging nutcase, but the numbers he cites in this little piece are encouraging as hell to those of us who would like to see that evil empire go away.

  338. Owen says

    I saw it, Crip Dyke – and the second time, too. Further to Lynna’s post at #401, my kids are in Navigators, and I usually refer to it as “sort of like the Scouts, but without the homophobia and religious bigotry”.

    Hopefully the link will work – looks rather odd in preview…

  339. Ogvorbis, broken failure. says

    Let me be clear. I made that up for pure snark. I know off no one actually proposing banning pressure cookers, but I wouldn’t be shocked.

    And yet, banning pressure cookers would actually be far, far, far easier to pass than actual useful gun control.

    Besides, the 1% have cooks, so it wouldn’t affect them making it even easier.

    Property is a beast, for sure. That’s tomorrow?

    Well, if it would be simpler, you could use the 1% attitude towards property: What’s mine is mine, and what’s yours is mine.

  340. carlie says

    I am so far behind the times, but just found this out and it makes me happy. Boggle the Owl is still around! I had noticed quite awhile back that it had turned into a spam blog, and I thought the person who did it had just stopped. Turns out they had just switched to a different URL! Boggle the Owl loves you. Now I have many pages of Boggle to catch up with.

  341. Pteryxx says

    from Jenny Trout’s blog:

    Two nights ago, when I stumbled wearily to bed, I used the last of the toilet paper in the upstairs bathroom. Because I am a loving wife, I used my lipstick to make a note on the mirror, to warn my husband of the situation: “TP BEFORE U POO.” This morning, husband I found the message neatly corrected, in a different shade of lipstick, in our eleven year old’s handwriting: “TP AFTER YOU POO.”

  342. Owen says

    I have never seen Boggle the owl before. But now I seem to have something in my eye…

  343. cicely (mumblemumble-SomethingHalf-Witty-mumblemumble) says

    Portia: Hurray for your kind-hearted dentist!

  344. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says


    Well, if it would be simpler, you could use the 1% attitude towards property: What’s mine is mine, and what’s yours is mine.

    I once joked – near the beginning of the year, that possession is 9/10ths of the law, therefore I couldn’t get less than an A-.

  345. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    Since I’m assuming it’s more right-wing lying, does anyone have a source that refutes the claim that the Affordable Care Act stipulates that doctors will be paid less after it takes effect than they are now, to the tune of the new salary being 5-10 times lower?

  346. John Morales says

    Carlie, obviously the Boggle ain’t for me.

    (Your link didn’t amaze me, it irritated me)

  347. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    5-10 times lower?

    You’re dealing with morons. We are not going to give doctors no salary while asking them to pay 4 to 9 times their old salary into the system.

    Sigh. Innumeracy’s cost to society is incalculable.

  348. Portia, worn out says

    Innumeracy’s cost to society is incalculable.

    This time, I see what you did there. (Right?)

    I once joked – near the beginning of the year, that possession is 9/10ths of the law, therefore I couldn’t get less than an A-.

    I know I got that one :)

    Thanks for the joy-sharing, cicely and Crip Dyke : )

    Crip Dyke (Is it okay if I call you CD?)
    Feel free to shoot me a line if there’s any way I can try to help with Property. And remember, it’s nobody’s thing.

    I like your link.

  349. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    This time, I see what you did there. (Right?)

    Yep. Intentional.

    Feel free to call me CD.

    I may shoot you a line, but while there are bound to be a lot of similarities in, say, tort or contract or criminal law – at least in basic concepts – the property systems are *so* different. Or at least so I imagine. Who knows. If I get my self organized & do my last minute reading & I come up with a question I’ll send it on even if there’s little chance you can answer it. Don’t worry: I won’t expect you to be able to.

    You can help more on Torts, if you wish.

  350. Portia, worn out says

    Oooh Torts, I like Torts.

    I gave a short lesson on torts during our emergency responder training tonight. It was the Legal and Ethical Duties section. I couldn’t get the instructor to understand the “Not-Revokable” is not the same as “Effective.” I didn’t belabor it though because I’m sure I’m the only one who cared. I’m getting better at knowing when not to press a point. (Yay incremental maturity!)

    I’ll be as helpful as I can.

  351. Portia, worn out says

    I need to email someone for advice on dealing with a suicidal friend. Can anyone help?
    my email is bravoportia at gthingy.

  352. Portia, worn out says

    I have a friend who told me he once was on the verge of suicide recently. He’s going through a tough divorce. I pressed him about getting an individual therapist becasue seeing the couple’s counselor isn’t good enough in this sort of situation. And told him to call me whenever. I’m pretty sure he knows I mean it because we are family sort of friends. He posted a facebook status about death just now. (Turns out to be a line from a Greek tragedy). I’m just sort of freaking out.

  353. chigau (違う) says

    I don’t do facebook so I don’t know what that means.
    Can you get him on the phone?

  354. Portia, worn out says

    Shit. I should have told someone. It sounds like he made an attempt recently. Shitfuckshit. But people closer to him than me know, and they are watching out, it sounds like.

    Should I call him or should I ask if he wants me to call him?

  355. chigau (違う) says

    If this is happening right now and there are people in meat-space nearby they should get on it.
    phone him

  356. Portia, worn out says

    I appreciate the link, chigau. I remembered it but couldn’t find it.
    I don’t know whether I should send it or not. Gah.

  357. Portia, worn out says

    He is alone, he’s drunk and taken pills and apparently people were there and decided to leave him alone. I’m on the phone now and don’t know what to say. This is happening now.

  358. Portia, worn out says

    “God will choose in the end, and I think he’s just trying to choose early”

  359. Beatrice (looking for a happy thought) says

    Portia, *hugs*

    Do you have a number of any of his family members or some friend who lives close?

  360. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    Keep him talking. If there’s any way to call or signal someone else who can go physically to his location do it. If all else fails, assuming you have a mobile and a land line, get the other one and dial someone who might understand the situation and hold the phone so they can hear what you’re saying to him. If he hangs up, call emergency services. Better an unneeded embarassment than a dead friend.

  361. Portia, worn out says

    I sent a text to a person he said knew about the situation, who is a paramedic and can hopefully help.

  362. Portia, worn out says

    Apparently EMS was there earlier and left him and his pills at home. He says he just wants to go to sleep.

  363. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    In these situations there’s no fucking way to tell just how likely they are to go through with it. When I had the knife to my wrist I was contemplating just how hard I was going to have to saw to do it right. But if you’d been talking to me on the phone, hell, if you’d been talking to me in person and been unable to see my hands you’d have never have know how far gone I was. My aspect was so flattened by that point my emotions just didn’t show.

    Shorter: assume the worst and apologize later if needs be.

  364. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    well, crud, Portia

    Sorry I wasn’t around earlier. Can you get him to say whether he’s taken *more* pills since EMTs left? Do EMTs have a legal right to force someone to come with them? I didn’t think so. But police certainly do, and the EMTs could call the police. I have literally no idea about the police’s ability to confiscate meds in that situation. Is there a rule against suicide? Does attempt law apply? If so, and he’s admitted wanting to die and taking an unspecified number of pills, can the police confiscate as “evidence”?

    Seems a really thin pretext. I don’t know what other power cops would use.

    I’m not in favor of such means, BTW, at least not in a generic sense. I’m in favor of low-coercion responses. In immediate situations, some tactics are justifiable that wouldn’t be for strong and persistent ideation without an attempt.

    LMK if you wanna talk. I obviously have a lot to do but I can spare some time.

  365. says

    If he’s taken pills, especially if he’s taken more since EMS left, he should on no account go to sleep. I would frankly advise you call EMS to his location again. If that person who you texted can get to him they should, and if you can get to him in meatspace, that would not be a bad thing. He should not be alone right now, and he should not be asleep right now. *Hugs* to you, and also to him.

  366. says

    So I was sitting there at the bar, after a 12 hour day at work. I had a few drinks and a couple of shots. I was tired, but other than that, everything seemed ok.
    I fucking hate this.
    I don’t know where it came from or why.
    All of a sudden, I felt this wave of sorrow and realized I couldn’t hold it back. I knew I was going to just let loose soon. So I close my tab out, left the bar and drove home.
    I cried all the way home.

    I know it’s petty.

    It’s silly.

    In the grand scheme of things, my sadness really isn’t that important.

    But, to this day, I just cannot shrug it off.
    I can’t say “oh, you’re single? Great. Enjoy it.”
    Instead, I say “you’re single? There’s something wrong with you you fucking loser. No one wants you because you’re screwed up. Other people out there who treat their SO’s like shit get to have what you dream of. You don’t imagine some fairy tale romance. You know that things aren’t all hunky dory all the time. You just want to know what it’s like to have a boyfriend. You want to know what it’s like to build and develop a relationship. You want to know what it’s like to share your life with someone you care about. You imagine vacations. You imagine arguments. You imagine dinner…movies…arguing over which way the toilet paper goes…painting the house…buying groceries. You know there is an element of fantasy to it that reality won’t match up to. Yet you still long for it. You suspect that the odds are against you…that the relationship will fail and you’ll be back to being alone. But you still dream…you still fantasize…you still hope that ONE day. ONE fucking day. You won’t be just a piece of meat. You won’t be just “that guy that someone wants to fuck/get fucked by”. You’ll be the guy that someone wants to actually date. You’ll be the guy that someone else thinks of the way you think of him. You’ll be the guy that someone else wants to spend their life with. But that time wasn’t 15 years ago. It wasn’t 10 years ago. It wasn’t 5 years ago. It wasn’t 5 weeks ago. That time has never existed. That time is the time that you’ve never had. You can only imagine what it’s like. You look around and sometimes it feels like other people get to experience the joys of intimacy and sustained relationships, and love and joy, and all you can do is to look from the outside in on relationships. You get to only imagine what it’s like. You’re going to die someday and you’re never going to know what it’s like to be in love. Because you lack the gene or whatever it is that fucking everybody seems to have that you don’t.”

    Sorry to dump that in here, but I needed to release somewhere.

    I’m going to go home, go to bed, and cry myself to sleep.

  367. chigau (違う) says

    I had my daily windows not responding meltdown
    tell us something when you know

  368. says

    big *hugs*. Your problems are also important. I’m sorry to hear that you’re not doing well, and I wish that I could do something to help, besides electronic hugs. If anything occurs, do let me know, though.

    Second what chigau said. Let us know when you know, or if there’s anything else we can do for you.

  369. rq says

    *hugs*, so many *hugs*!

    *hugs* and I hope he backs away from the edge!
    9-1-1 is probably best.

  370. yazikus says

    OMG. Tax season is over. Thank the fsm. First day off in 6 weeks. I’m brushing my teeth and going to bed knowing I don’t have to work in the morning and I am so happy. I had to leave my house today due to my ‘velvet leash’ (ipad/work email) going “ba-ding” every 10 minutes on my supposed “day off”. I hope the Horde is doing well. And has either (in the usa) filed their taxes or an extension. Happy after Tax Season (in usa) to all!

  371. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says


    It’s not silly, not in the least. It’s human to want, to dream, to hope for things beyond your current reach. You’re human, and more: you’re a profoundly caring, empathetic person. A good person who deserves all the joy that life can bring. Your time on the outside will allow to you appreciate those joys far more when they come your way. A faint comfort that I know, pitiful in it’s inadequacy. I’m sorry that it’s taking so long to find a partner. All I can offer in the interminable wait is the all love and caring that an internet friend can give from the other side of the planet.

  372. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    Your problems are not less than Portia’s. I want solace for you every bit as much as I want it for Portia, and don’t you dare try to minimize that b/c we know each other over the internet.

    1. There is no magic gene.

    2. There is no magic person.

    3. There is meeting someone who’s good enough and who thinks you’re good enough at a time when you can both treat each other well enough to make it work.

    It’s not something that happens everyday, and yet, look! It happens every day. Whatever your weaknesses and whatever your strengths, it can happen for you, when you’re ready. You just have to buy a lot of tickets before your number comes up.

    When I was writing, people would tell me how many rejection letters to expect for each acceptance. They told me to cherish the rejections because it was one rejection closer to acceptance. It’s a lot rarer to find someone to settle down with than it is for a writer to sell pieces or a researcher to pass peer review. So you have to deal with more rejections. But they all count.

    Hugs to everyone.

    Do please let us know how you are and how your friend is when you have news, Portia.


  373. opposablethumbs says

    Yay for happy dentist news, Portia.

    Assorted hugs, Nice Cups of Tea or confetti as appropriate – how is it possible I’m getting threadbare (a less severe form of threadrupt) again? I blame … I think I blame the insecurities this time.

    Swimming in the sea is brilliant, but I think I can only manage to go out any distance if it’s a flat-as-a-pancake day. Last time was … last holiday. Maybe about 5 or 6 years ago?

  374. Portia, worn out says

    You always say that everyone’s trials and tribulations are important and worthy of hearing and empathy. Don’t sell yourself short. *hugs* for you, and sympathy and love.

    I am back home, and I think we are in the clear. I have his sleeping pills on my own nightstand, but he drew the line at me taking him to the hospital or his case of beer home with me. I also included the option of him sleeping on my futon, but that wasn’t appealing to him. And by not appealing, I mean he put on his stubborn, stern voice that I know means he isn’t budging.

    I asked if I could come get his pills from him when he told me over the phone that the paramedic acquaintance who came had said he should see a doctor and he refused. He said I could come get them so I talked on the phone to him the whole two mile drive over there. When I knocked he said “Hang on a sec someone’s here.” He had been telling me all the reasons he’s worthless and he hates life. I said we could keep talking, and he did. It seemed to help. I kept encouraging him to let me take him to the hospital, but he’s adamant against it. (CD, theoretically a mentally ill person may be transported to the hospital against their will, but I don’t know exactly what the criteria are for that. The cops were at his house earlier too, and I know they can do it but again they probably have a higher threshold). He said he took 6 of his sleeping pills.

    I tried the “What are you looking forward to?” gambit on the phone but it backfired. He said all he wanted was to make his kids’ lives better and he felt he could do that by leaving their lives. Ack.

    I got a text back from the paramedic acquaintance and he said that he was there earlier in the evening and he had agreed to talk to Friend in the morning and thanks for letting him know. So apparently he wasn’t that concerned.

    Friend expressed deep appreciation for my coming over and listening and caring. I think that helped. I hope it helped. I compared depression to the flu over and over again. I told him I would bring my friend soup if they were sick, and this is no different.

    Thank you all so so so much for being the wonderful supportive knowledgeable people you are.

    You really gave me a eyes-wide-open moment with your experience of not showing signs of self-harm. Thank you for showing me how necessary it was to go over there.
    You too, chigau.

    Thank you all for your support and advice.
    Thank you, Dalillama, rq, Beatrice, Tony, Crip Dyke, chigau, FossilFishy. And you too for the song, JM.

    I will be okay. I’m a little shaken. I am so worried I did something wrong. I was really insistent about the hospital. And the beer. He promised he wouldn’t drink it but I don’t know why he wouldn’t let me have it for the night.

  375. rq says

    I’m glad things have settled for the moment! Yay you! ♥ (Also, belatedly, yay for fixed tooth!)
    As for the beer, well, some people have a deep and abiding love and attachment to their beer. I know some people like that – they’ll let everything go, but the beer.

    What Crip Cyke said so well.


    I have a small issue with this article on polygamy, mostly because it defines polygamy as ‘1 man + many women’ (implicitly), rather than any multiple-partner arrangement. Any more experienced poly people want to weigh in on this?

  376. opposablethumbs says

    Oh, shit, I thought I refreshed only shortly before writing – but now I see I missed the really important stuff. Portia I hope your friend is OK. I hope you are able to help. And that you are driving carefully, even now.

    Tony, of course what you said matters! Don’t feel for one second that because it’s a different type of issue that it doesn’t matter. Come to think of it we probably all feel that sometimes … hell, I do it all the time. Fwiw, I think you are a really great person – intelligent, compassionate and with great integrity. I would a million times rather have spent my evening with you last night than where I did.

  377. says


    CD, theoretically a mentally ill person may be transported to the hospital against their will, but I don’t know exactly what the criteria are for that. The cops were at his house earlier too, and I know they can do it but again they probably have a higher threshold)

    The behavior you’re describing would be a borderline instance here, as far as the police intervening, but presumably they know more about how things work locally than I do. You’ve done all you can, from the sounds of it, and all you can do is all you can do. Check on him again in the morning, though.

    Fossilfishy said it better than I did.

  378. Portia, worn out says

    Oh, and CD, you are too kind, but you focus on your exam, lady!

    Thanks, rq. I think I’m still sort of in my rescue-mode and need to unwind.
    Thanks for the yay for tooth. :) You too, opposablethumbs.

    Oh and re: beer. He first said I could put it in his truck, lock it, and take the keys. I was skeptical, and said so. He admitted he had spare keys. Then he said he has full access to his neighbor’s garage fridge which is full of beer. And said he wants to keep his beer because he doesn’t want to walk to the neighbors. This sequence of statements made me concerned he was going to keep drinking. But like he pointed out as he ushered me out the door, I had done all I could do. (Short of sleeping on his floor, which I felt awkward about after he confessed having feelings for me.)

    *moarhugs* for Tony. You really are wonderful. You’re too wonderful to not find happiness. Thirding or fourthing CD.

    Opposablethumbs, thank you for the well wishes and concern. I am safely back in my bed and contemplating calling him in an hour or something to make sure he’s good. He promised to text me by 7 am when he’s up to check in.

  379. Portia, worn out says

    Thank you for the reassurance. I need it. Posted my last before I saw yours.

    I didn’t see FossilFishy’s to Tony until just now either. Wonderfully put.

  380. Portia, worn out says

    I’m turning in as well. Thanks again, everyone.
    *hugs*, ♥♥♥♥, and sweet dreams/sunny day to everyone.

  381. opposablethumbs says

    Portia, what you did and said sounds wonderful to me. I have no experience in this kind of situation, but I think what you did could mean a lot.

  382. rq says

    Good night, Portia and Dalillama!
    I hope the night is full of restful sleep.
    I’m (We’re) off to see if the ice is moving in the river. Flooding season has begun everywhere else (happens every year, when it gets warm enough for all the meltwater to swell the rivers and break up the ice and push it up on the banks and into houses).
    We’re up on the upper level of the city (up a rather high, steep hill – if the flooding gets to us, it means half the town is completely under water), so we’re ok. But I’ve never seen the ice go. It’s supposed to be an impressive sight. (I saw the aftermath of one such massive ice-going, will have to dig up some sample photos. Giant blocks of river ice flattening greenhouses.)

  383. opposablethumbs says

    Wow, rq, that sounds like something to see all right. I’ve only ever seen such things on TV – rivers hardly ever even freeze here (unless they’re tiny ones, maybe). Of course it has happened … but the last Frost Fair on the Thames was in 1814, a bit before my time :-)

  384. rq says

    A bit before your time? ;)
    And I’m sorry to say we had to miss out on the sight after all, today… We got most of our abbreviated grocery run done when I discovered Middle Child is running a fever. Because he never asks for his mittens to be put back on, or for his hood to be tied a bit tighter; he never complains that he’s cold. Except when he’s sick. :(
    If he’s ok in the afternoon, we’ll try again tomorrow (also, less chance of rain tomorrow). Don’t want to miss it.

  385. opposablethumbs says

    Oh no for Middle Child running a temperature :-(

    It’s so hard to wrangle multiple small people, I’m always impressed when anyone gets out of the house at all! (and I’ve only got two … some things get so much easier when they’re older. Just as other things get harder! :-) )

  386. carlie says

    Oh man – hugs to Portia, hugs to Tony.

    It must be the day for it – I’m in the middle of a row myself with a very depressed friend. It’s that argument where the funk they’re in makes them interpret everything I say or do as an attack no matter what it is, and I’ve never been good at dealing with that kind of thing. I’ve at least figured out by now not to engage the substance of the accusations because trying to say they’re wrong about that just feeds into the idea that they’re all bad, but apologizing and saying I didn’t mean to make them feel that way doesn’t get me very far either. Blargh.

    John – I think you and Boggle are diametrically opposed entities, like matter and anti-matter. ;)

  387. ImaginesABeach says

    It turns out that Huge Work Project wasn’t as done as I had hoped and I’m still threadrupt, but it looks like cicely got new wheels and I just wanted to take a moment to say yippee!

  388. Anri says

    If only there were a way of disabling pop-ups and redirects on browsers!

    …not putting them there in the first place?

    My own personal solution has always been to assume that websites that used them were far more interested in pocketbooks than their own content, and that they believe their visitors were so stupid as to buy something just because a flashing light went off above it. This prompts me run my own form of adblock: a script on my Personal Processor saying “don’t go to that website again”.

    In other words, the ads are an apparent assumption that FTB considers its target audience to be the sort of people that buy stuff from pop-up ads. If so, I’m not the target audience.

    I’m letting them know that.

  389. John Morales says


    In other words, the ads are an apparent assumption that FTB considers its target audience to be the sort of people that buy stuff from pop-up ads. If so, I’m not the target audience.

    Ads? What ads? :)

    This prompts me run my own form of adblock: a script on my Personal Processor saying “don’t go to that website again”.

    You’re doing a good job of ignoring your script, then.

    In other words, the ads are an apparent assumption that FTB considers its target audience to be the sort of people that buy stuff from pop-up ads. If so, I’m not the target audience.

    Not quite — the assumption is on the part of the advertisers; FTB is just the host.

    I’m letting them know that.

    But that’s not the script you claim you run, is it?