[Lounge #471]


This is the lounge. You can discuss anything you want, but you will do it kindly.

Status: Heavily Moderated; Previous thread


  1. opposablethumbs says

    Now they all delight in chewing up the little trees (as the little elves living in them scream in pain,

    You’ve reminded me – we used to have food that had to go to the Grand Ball being held inside people’s stomachs.

    Sounds like the whole food adventure is going rather well in your respective households, rq and Giliell :-)

  2. rq says

    *hugs* and *anti-pain medication* for the back, hope it holds out for the day with as little strain on it as possible! And heals right quick.

    Middle Child indulges in too much fruit, at the expense of everything else (except the sweets, but since those aren’t freely available, I don’t worry about that), right down to upset tummies because ‘green apples are delicious!’. He reminds me of a fructivorous bat sometimes.


    the Grand Ball being held inside people’s stomachs

    An idea worth stealing for future use. :D

  3. says

    With normal meals, #1 eats the veggies at the expense of the rest, the little one goes for meat and potatoes. Only that occasionally they’ll both ignore everything and only eat hot dogs. Or fish fingers. Or dry pasta. Or…
    Basically, I’ve given up worrying. I don’t let them substitute dinner for sweets, but the rest of it, I don’t care.

    Lower back with pain in the legs and butt cheeks?
    Or hardly being able to stand straight?
    Speedy recovery.
    After eschewing my beloved armchair, I’m almost fine again. I guess I need a new one :(

  4. opposablethumbs says

    A few minutes ago I was taking a quick break outside, sunbathing under a bright blue sky. Right now it’s hailing. Not bad for August …

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

    But green apples really are delicious!

    Sympathy for your pain problems.

    Figured that I should do something for my birthday, so I’m gonna take myself out for a nice late lunch/early dinner.

  6. opposablethumbs says

    Beatrice, it’s today? I lost track???? Oh, happy birthday if it is!!!!! – all my best wishes from way over here to your west
    *\o/* *\o/* *\o/* *\o/* (= birthday sparklers being waved)

  7. rq says

    *clears throat*
    Happy birthdaay tooo yooooou,
    Happy birthday tooooo yooooou –
    Haaaappy biiiirthdaaaay deeeearrrr Beeatriiiiiiice,
    Haaaapppyyyy Biiiiiirthdaaaayyyy Tooooooo Yoooooouuu!!!
    and cake. Forgive, it’s not a pure green apple cake, but it is a green, apple cake. With kale. :)
    All the best to you on this anniversary of once-more-around-the-sun/

  8. says

    My sympathies on the back pain.
    I woke up with an aching upper back today, so I feel you.

    I hope you have a lovely, enjoyable birthday (don’t forget, you get an entire week).


    I mentioned over a year ago meeting a guy who lives less than half a mile from me. Very attractive man who is an atheist and we share a few other things in common. I remember mentioning here that he was talking to someone else at the time, but didn’t mention it until after we’d gone out a few times. I declined to continue seeing him as I didn’t want to get in the way of that, and I felt somewhat deceived by him not telling me. I didn’t bear him any ill will, and I’d pretty much written him off (going so far as to delete his number from my phone).
    He texted me out of the blue last week, and turns out he’s been single for some time now, and says he’s thought about me often. He finally sent me a message and we hung out last night. It was nice. Especially the kissing. It had been more than a year. I hope to do it again.

  9. says

    Nerd, in the older comments you provided some updates on the Redhead’s condition. Thanks for that. I was appalled to hear the ICU was understaffed. Methinks some hospital administrators may be trying to make more profit for themselves.

    My few hospital experiences tell me that, as a patient, one needs a knowledgeable patient advocate, preferably an experienced RN. Otherwise, who is going to prevent the hospital staff (or lack of staff) from making your stay worse than it needs to be, or even from killing you.

  10. Great American Satan says

    I saw someone have a seizure. By the time an army of EMTs had shown up, it was past, but he was still in tachycardia. So I go meet him at the hospital and I’m there when the ER doc comes in to give him a rundown of how they’ve been treating him and what happened/what it means. There is no mention of a seizure, just some bullshit about cardiac health. I say, “This is well and good, but what about the seizure? It was the reason I dialed 911 and I told the EMTs more than once about it.” It was the first he’d heard.

    A Led Zeppelin song comes to mind.

  11. toska says

    Great American Satan
    I hope your friend/acquaintance pulls through alright. I know someone who has seizures fairly regularly, but it’s still scary to see it happen. It’d be even worse if it happened out of the blue like that.

  12. says

    Yay for Tony

    Oh, another one of the kids’ favourites is squash. Ever since Hokaido squash returned to the stores about three weeks ago we’ve had it like twice a week. Soup, fritata, stir fry…
    Tonight it’s soup again, this time European style with bacon.

  13. says

    Beatrice, Happy Birthday!

    Tony, yay!

    Kevin, feel better soon and do be careful not to overdo.

    Tomorrow Husband and I are going to my mother’s to sit in on her phone appointment for financial counseling, so she can apply for a reverse mortgage so she can continue to pay for the 24/7 care she needs. She needs lots of emotional support, and I’m worn out already. Any spare good thoughts folks have lying around would be much appreciated.

  14. says

    Midterm elections this coming November are expected to help Republicans. That’s not good.

    […] Republicans are looking to take over senates in Colorado, Iowa, Oregon, Maine and Nevada, and houses in Kentucky, New Hampshire and West Virginia. Republicans could emerge with complete control of the legislatures in New Hampshire and Kentucky, though both of those states have Democratic governors.

    They hope these victories will help them push through legislation that has been stymied by Democrats until now, such as pressing the kind of restrictions on labor organizing the party passed in Wisconsin, or rolling back gun laws in Colorado. In Iowa, Republicans are looking to eliminate a tax on manufacturing and enact a ban there on telemedicine abortions, where women in rural areas obtain abortion pills after videoconference consultations with faraway doctors. […]

    New York Times link.

    A few states will benefit from voter restriction laws that will still be in effect for all of 2014, even if the ACLU and other organizations are challenging them. The issues will not be resolved in the courts until 2015. Look at North Carolina, for example:

    Since 2011, Republican policymakers in much of the country imposed sweeping restrictions on voting, but arguably no state was quite as ferocious on this front as North Carolina. Led by Gov. Pat McCrory, GOP policymakers slashed early voting, placed new limiting on voter-registration drives, made it harder for students to vote (and even register to vote), ended same-day registration during the early voting period, and made it easier for vigilante poll-watchers to challenge eligible voters.

    If the Supreme Court conservative justices has not gutted the Voting Rights Act, laws like those in NC would never have been passed. Now that we have those kinds of laws in several states, each instance of disenfranchising voters has to be fought in the courts.

  15. says

    That was one of the better weekends that I have had in a while. I owe that partially to you folks. I got to have some meaningful interactions around here during the week, and Friday with a couple of people my wife works with and we game with on occasion. And my wife and I are doing what we can with the Xbox360 version of minecraft (I managed to install switch activated hidden defense turrets). It was a good weekend. Hopefully I can channel that into a week of effective job hunting.

    RE: depression earlier in the thread.
    I have spent the last two years skipping across the surface of clinical depression like a stone and trying to get to the shore before I sink. I describe depression like a filter because it’s not that the things you see while you are depressed are wrong, it’s that the emotional state filters how you respond and think about things. It often lies with the truth by covering up positive interpretations and rumination. Looking at the differences between optimism and pessimism are revealing with respect to this. Too much optimism is bad too and there are balance issues all over the place.

    About a year and a half ago I started noticing the signs because I have read about it since my wife has always been clinically depressed. For example I stopped enjoying everything that I normally enjoyed (hobbies, interests, etc…). I tried to move from academic research to public education because of my mental diagnoses and this ended up being a mistake. I just can’t survive in the typical emotional environment of a Texas public school and the structural flaws are just offensive to me. Not to mention that the reality of substitute teacher is often like daily worst-case-scenerio. I was starting to approach something like PTSD and just had to stop when the depressive symptoms started. Now I’m trying to reprogram how I feel about the future. Depression is an insidious creature.

  16. says

    Oh hell. That should be “If the Supreme Court conservative justices had not gutted …” instead of “If the Supreme Court conservative justices has not gutted…”

  17. Great American Satan says

    Toska – That was his first, close to two years ago, but the meds wiped ’em out. Go Lamotrigine! I just pointed it out as an example of watchin yo back at the ER.

  18. rq says

    Just going to hang out here (as usual) while sorting paper[stuff] at work (no actual writing to do today, alas?) and hope some of allayer goodsense rubs off before I get home and continue the poutfest.


    I hate squash. The kids love it. I make myself try some every damn time, and it just won’t work its magic on me. :(
    (Except summer squash, it’s close enough to zucchini that it doesn’t matter. And zucchini is awesome.)

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

    Thank you! :)

    I admit I was totally fishing with that “off-hand” remark.

    Lunch/dinner was disappointing. Admittedly, I should have asked what the dish was like, but I didn’t want to be a bother so I assumed. Never assume.
    I should have read the description of the dish literary – meaning that I should have expected a mound of green salad topped with slices of ham and cheese (but who expects that? I thought they meant some nice cheese with the beef, like parmigiano). Oh yeah, the beef… let’s just say it was far from the main ingredient (so everything literary except the beef part).

    I mean…. slices of ham and cheese on top of green salad? Who does that? I guess it would have been good if those actually had some beef to accompany as it was probably the idea.

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


    That cake looks strange. I’m not entirely sure what I think about vegetable cakes, but I might try it.
    Have you tried the recipe, how does that combination taste?


    Holding thumbs for you! Yeah, kissing is nice, I hope there’ll be much more of that in your near future :)

    Take care. Just drop in to restore your truck with all the hugs and support whenever you need.

  21. blf says

    slices of ham and cheese on top of green salad? Who does that?

    Not quite the same thing, but I make myself a salad consisting of tomato chunks, smoked meat / sausage chunks, and cheese chunks, drizzled with olive oil (not in chunks), and sometimes with a dash (not a chunk) of pepper.

  22. rq says

    Actually, I have no idea, since I found it by googling ‘birthday cake with green apples’ specially in your honour today, but it sounds really intriguing. Plus the colour!
    I don’t know what kind of kale I need to use, though, or what kind I have available here – I looked it up, and it turns out there’s a freakish amount of variety in that vegetable family (even within the category of kale commonly known as ‘kale’ they seem to be using in the recipe).
    Sorry your salad was such a disappointment. :( Alan Rickman has a suggestion for you.

  23. rq says

    I hope all goes well tomorrow, with as little stress and complications as possible!!
    *extra hugs* for you!
    And don’t Eat All The Things, what will you give the cat tomorrow morning????

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


    I’m a bit lonely and whiny. The whole project here is going downhill and no matter how much I try to ignore it after work, it still upsets me. So a salad gets more blame than the poor thing deserves.

  25. opposablethumbs says

    Sorry the dish was disappointing, Beatrice, that kind of thing really shouldn’t be allowed to happen when something is supposed to be a bit of a treat – Not Fair!

    But I reckon that means it doesn’t really count; after a few days or when a good opportunity arises and especially if you can pick a moment when you’re in a good mood anyway, give yourself another little treat instead to make up for it, if you can – one you know will be nice.
    Tony! that’s so nice to hear! Thank you for letting us share the pleasure of a bit of good news! :-)))
    Re watching your back at the ER – yes, and just when you’re at your most vulnerable and think you’re in the safest possible place.

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

    … which is nicely illustrated by Rickman’s overreaction :)

  27. rq says

    .. But I’m sorry the project isn’t going as well as it should. I hope it does a bit of a turn around soon. Or, at least, saves all future meals from the Wrath of Alan Rickman. :)

  28. says


    Holding thumbs for you! Yeah, kissing is nice, I hope there’ll be much more of that in your near future :)

    I asked him a few times if he’d like to get together in the future and he enthusiastically said yes. So I think there shall be more kissing.

    He was sweet too. As I don’t have a car, I walked to his house around 11 pm last night. It’s a short 10 minute walk. As time went by, I remembered he had to work in the morning. When I told him I needed to go, he insisted on driving me home, which I had to politely argue him out of. It’s only a ten minute walk. No sense wasting gas. The weather was awesome last night-no humidity and the temperature was in the mid 70s. It was the perfect weather to walk in. He was worried about crime, which I can understand. Last year, his car was stolen out of his driveway while he was home, so I understand. I just pointed out that I only have $2 in my wallet, I’m not a car, and the walk is only 10 minutes. Plus I would be walking down a main street, rather than back alleys, plus I had my phone. He finally relented. I thought it was sweet though.

    Don’t get me wrong, like I mentioned a short time ago, walking to the convenience store at night, I think about how I’m a Person of Color, in Florida, where you find Stand Your Ground. So yes, there is that tiny voice in the back of my mind that keeps me conscious of walking at night (hence the fact that I usually wear brightly colored shirts, and make use of my cellphone; through the neighborhood, I walk down the middle of the street as well).

    On another note, I noticed when I woke up today that he gave me a hickey. I figured that would happen bc I am such a delicate flower :) But I rather like the sensation of getting one. I needed to walk to the store and initially I mildly freaked out “OMG I have a hickey, what will people think?” I still have some makeup that I bought a looooooong time ago (before I moved to FL) that would have been sufficient to cover it up. But then I thought “I don’t give a fuck what people think. I had fun last night, a hickey doesn’t harm anyone, and if other people judge me for that, it’s their problem, not mine.” So I wore a tee shirt and walked in there like normal.

    Incidentally, while I have no problem with them in certain contexts, I do realize that there are places where a visible hickey probably isn’t a good idea. So if I have a job interview I’ll of course either wear makeup or wear a shirt with a collar.

  29. morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor says

    Tony, congrats on the new friend. Now all you need is a new job and things will look a lot brighter. Holding thumbs.

    I’m completely ‘rupt. The black dog is sitting on my chest.

    Hugs all around.

  30. says


    I mean…. slices of ham and cheese on top of green salad? Who does that? I guess it would have been good if those actually had some beef to accompany as it was probably the idea.

    slices of cheese? That’s odd. Shredded cheese sure. Or crumbled blue cheese (which is *divine* on a salad). But slices?



    Not quite the same thing, but I make myself a salad consisting of tomato chunks, smoked meat / sausage chunks, and cheese chunks, drizzled with olive oil (not in chunks), and sometimes with a dash (not a chunk) of pepper.

    I usually have shredded cheese on a salad, but I think in the future I’ll switch up to mini chunks of cheese so that I can get it on my fork with greater ease.
    As for pepper…well if I’m at a restaurant, I server is likely to get tired grinding fresh pepper on my salad. I *love* freshly ground pepper on anything-especially salads :)



    I know, I know, I should learn to make pretty linkies, but it’s hard enough we working on Nixie’s little wee touch keyboard as it is.

    I say do whatever is easiest/best for you. Back when I only had internet on my cellphone, I couldn’t do those special links, so I had to copy/paste the link and drop it into my comments. Works perfectly fine.

    Tomorrow Husband and I are going to my mother’s to sit in on her phone appointment for financial counseling, so she can apply for a reverse mortgage so she can continue to pay for the 24/7 care she needs. She needs lots of emotional support, and I’m worn out already. Any spare good thoughts folks have lying around would be much appreciated.

    Good thoughts to you and good luck as well :)

  31. says

    rq, the cats have their own very expensive special catfood from the vet. It smells ghastly, so that’s no temptation at all. Their special hypoallergenic cat treats, however… The first ingredient is chicken livers, and they smell like chicken broth.

    Anyway, it’s the people food that’s the real problem. I ate some fruit, and I made a nice thermos of decaf tea, since I’ve already had enough of the leaded stuff for today. I just have to keep my hands busy, that’s the trick. Gah.

  32. says

    *hugs and support*

    All the best for the Redhead and for you.

    If you ever make it to Germany, never order salad. ;)
    This is kind of standard if you have “Salad with XYZ” on the menu.
    Green salad and XYZ on top. “Italian salad” is green salad with ham, cheese, usually eggs and sometimes tomatoes.
    We like it as a “pick and mix” dish: I put all the toppings in little dishes and everybody takes what they like. The kids usually ignore the lettuce part, but there’s never anything left (after a few hours)

  33. says

    PZ is falling down on the job. We still don’t have FtB recent comments in the sidebar, nor do we have the ‘return to top’ button back. How in the world am I supposed to believe he is the ruler of FtB if he can’t get stuff like this done?
    No cookie for him.

  34. blf says

    [My] server is likely to get tired grinding fresh pepper on my salad. I *love* freshly ground pepper on anything

    Yes! So do I. I actually have made a server (actually, the (co?-)owner of the restaurant, his partner(? SO?) was the chef) tried of grinding fresh pepper (onto a steak, not a salad) — I was a frequent customer there, so he felt quite comfortable joking with me about all night. Which was all the more amusing since neither one spoke much English, and I didn’t speak much useful French. So there was a great deal of Italian-style miming and giggles from the rest of the clients…

  35. blf says

    zucchini is awesome

    Compared to moar bloody pototaoes, perhaps. I suspect almost anything would be awesome, with the obvious exceptions of peas and celery. And squash. And horses. And British Industrial Cheddar.

    Well, Ok, British Industrial Cheddar is “awesome” in its very own special way, similar to Dwarf Combat Bread, but more deadly (to both sides and all lifeforms thereafter).

  36. says

    Whoa. I’ve sat on the sidelines of this recent spat of potato bashing, but on the sidelines I shall sit no more.


    Compared to moar bloody pototaoes, perhaps. I suspect almost anything would be awesome, with the obvious exceptions of peas and celery.

    In the eternal words of Bugs Bunny: “Of course you weawize, dis means war!”
    Pick your weapons!
    I am armed with a slingshot. My slinging weapons shall be mushy peas and slimy lemons.

  37. cicely says

    *careful hug* for Kevin, and I hope your back bounces back quickly.

    Happy birthday, Beatrice!
    *cake & ice cream & fireworks*

    Tony!, I’m so glad for you! I hope this works out well.
    :) :) :)

    *hugs* and a truck-load of good thoughts, Anne.


    That was one of the better weekends that I have had in a while.

    Hurrah!…and may there be many more!

    Squash is not food.
    Except for pumpkin.

    Anne, Do Not Eat All The Things!!!
    Some of them are squashes, or, worse, peas.
    Or, even worse, Horses.

    *manyhugs* for morgan ?!
    Sorry about the black dog.

  38. blf says

    I am armed with a slingshot. My slinging weapons shall be mushy peas and slimy lemons.

    I have a trebuchet, some cats, and an unopenable cupboard full of the fermented byproducts of fermented potatoes (possibly miniaturized Latvians).

    And I’ve just opened a bottle of vin

  39. blf says

    Squash is not food.

    True, albeit I’ve head it can be used as horse repellent. Especially zucchini.

    Except for pumpkin.

    Heathen! Heretic!! Blasphemer!!!
    No cheese for you, until you repent.

  40. blf says

    OoooOOOooo, I’m so scaaaaared.

    Ah, half the battle won: The massed zucchini hordes are already running scared.

  41. rq says

    Don’t be fooled by your common-place appearance. ;)
    ‘Normal’ is relative, and unfortunately, being ‘normal’ for the Lounge doesn’t really qualify you for actual normalcy. :)
    And hey, I thought we were both finally on the same side, here. Up with Zucchini?

  42. says

    This is probably not the time to mention that I like some sorts of squashes, if and when properly prepared.

    Alas, my dark and shameful secret has been revealed, how shall I live with myself now?

    Oh, it’s lunchtime. Never mind.

  43. says

    Speaking of squashes…anyone who finds themselves with a squash and wishes to divest themselves of the seeds, please send them my way (not by way of slingshot though…looks at blf). I love to season them and bake them. They are delightful.

  44. morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor says

    I’m afraid this battle must be postponed. St. Crispin’s Day is not until Oct. 25. All our missiles will be mush by then. Alas.

  45. rq says

    Oh, you’re with blf on this one. *sigh*


    Righty, well I’m going to go and head on home and try not to take the car for a swim (again). Drove right into that storm on the way here (unmetaphorically speaking), hopefully it will have passed on its merry way by now.

  46. rq says

    Invest in a good cellar, I always say – plus, mushy vegetables just make a much more satisfying *thwack* on landing.
    (PS May the black dog find elsewhere to lie down – for example, a dark corner of the world where nobody else is nearby.)

  47. says

    Nay. The battle must not be postponed. We potato lovers have been kept down for too long. Tis time for an uprising.

    Squash and zucchini though…they are naught but food for horses.

  48. blf says

    [I]s there ANY vegetable you actually eat?

    You mean besides apples, chicken, nuts, duck, cheese, beef, MUSHROOMS!, pork, vin, seafood (of all sorts), unpolished rice, …?

    Tomatoes, beans (of all sorts), garlic, cauliflower, broccoli, …

    Even, as I have said before, peas, in the correct circumstances: For instance, at Pea Soup Andersen’s (my family used to live relatively close to Buellton).

    And I don’t dislike potatoes, except “french fries” (although properly done Belgian fries get a pass, especially when served with mussels, mayonnaise, and mustard).

    Squashes and British Industrial Cheddar are not fit for consumption, or even for use as boat anchors.

  49. morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor says

    Them’s fightin’ words M. Tony!
    Though I love the noble tuber, I am a loyal member of the Squash Brigade. Prepare your weapons!

  50. morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor says

    What the feck is “spam juice”? Liquefied penis extender?


  51. jefrir says

    Congratulations, Tony!, and I hope it turns out well. It is nice to be kissing someone again after being single for a while, isn’t it?

  52. morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor says

    SPAM is a “processed meat food product” produced by Hormel Co. Very popular during the last great war. It is encased in a gelatinous goo that, at this point, need no further description.

  53. says


    Spam is a canned precooked meat product made by the Hormel Foods Corporation, first introduced in 1937. The labeled ingredients in the classic variety of Spam are chopped pork shoulder meat, with ham meat added, salt, water, modified potato starch as a binder, sugar, and sodium nitrite as a preservative. Spam’s gelatinous glaze, or aspic, forms from the cooling of meat stock.

    The gelatinous glaze is the juice of which I spake.

    Yes, it really is nice. It’s also great to have something good happen in my life, as these last two months have just been a major downer.

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

    I like both potatoes and zucchini.
    Especially baked in the oven together, with some minced meat. Or tomatoes. Or cream and cheese. Or some combination of those.

  55. morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor says

    Alas, I must concede this first battle to the Noble Tubers. My high caliber marshmallow gun is no match for pasty pasta slathered in spam juice. We will fight another day.

  56. blf says

    SPAM is a “processed meat food product” produced by Hormel Co.

    Yes, and “spam” is a common name for unsolicited commercial e-mail (UCE), such as Nigerian 409 scams and penis extenders.

    Neither, to the best of my knowledge, is typically juiced.

    There does seem to be a drink called “spam juice“: A blend of Strawberry, Pineapple, Apple, and Mint. With the possible exception of the mint, and that sounds rather good…

  57. says

    Tony! You can’t have my pumpkin seeds, because I also like toast and eat them. I will save all the others for you, though.

    The Hawaiian BBQ place up at our shopping center has a lot of spam-involved dishes on their menu, along with their versions of various Japanese dishes. I guess it’s traditional. We got some spam musubi there once. It was… odd.

  58. morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor says

    Tony! you can have ALL the Spam Sushi. Knock yerself out. As a sprog I was forced to eat much of this so called food product, along with Velveeta, Cheese Whiz, Wonder Bread, and Miracle Whip. I eventually became a good cook in self defense.

  59. blf says

    spam sushi

    That is an abomination unto Nuggin.

    I think we’ve found a common enemy. All slingshots, marshmallow guns, trebuchets, at the Ready! Aim!! (No, no, at the spam sushi! Geesh, some people…) Aim!!! F— we interrupt the normally scheduled programming to bring you an unimportant announcement, which we seem to have lost. But it something to do with memory loss. Please stand by, normal service might eventually be resumed……

  60. blf says

    I was forced to eat much [SPAM], along with Velveeta, Cheese Whiz, Wonder Bread, and Miracle Whip.

    Any actual, you know, food?

  61. says

    Oh, I don’t want it.
    When I was young, my father was in the military and my mother was going to school and working part time. We were poor.
    I ate a lot of spam.
    As I got older, I began to dislike it. I haven’t had it in 20 or so years, and I really don’t want to ever have it again.



    Tony! You can’t have my pumpkin seeds, because I also like toast and eat them. I will save all the others for you, though.

    They are soooooooo much better freshly baked too. I really need to buy a bunch of pumpkins the day after Halloween (when they’re cheap) and save the seeds. Plus dogs like pumpkin, so I wouldn’t be wasting the squash (I don’t like the taste of squashes).
    Have you ever tried the seeds from other squashes or gourds?

  62. morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor says


    Any actual, you know, food?

    Not much. We were poor folks with too many kids. Most of the ready cash went to the parents’ alcohol habit. I may not have had decent clothes, but the parents always had their fuckin’ whiskey. When I took over all the cooking in my early teens, everyone was grateful. My mother never met a vegetable she liked. And any piece of meat had to be cooked to a crisp. As I said, I became a good cook in self defense.

    I’m gonna go clean up the marshmallow gun.

    Speaking of guns, one of my neighbors got in a tiff with a friend the other night and shot the friend. The friend is still alive, barely. And a good time is had by all here in the rural west.

  63. opposablethumbs says

    Who are they stotting, or will the drummer just stot anybody’s heid in that opens the cupboard?

  64. says

    Fuck. That’s awful. I hope your neighbor survives and gets back to health quickly. Fucking people and their guns. Bad enough that we turn to violence to resolve conflicts at the drop of a hat, but some people have to resort to using firearms.

    As I said, I became a good cook in self defense.

    Did you have to teach yourself to cook, or did you have access to cookbooks?

  65. morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor says


    Yeah, fuck the guns… and the violence. Massive stupidity. Haven’t heard any news about the friend. I hope he will be okay.

    I was fascinated by the process of cooking from a very early age. Kitchen chemistry. I learned the very basic basics from my mother and then I taught myself via cookbooks and asking questions. My grandmother was a pretty good cook. And I read everything I could. Cooking is a very meditative activity for me. It was a way for me to remove myself from the daily family drama.

  66. blf says

    Who are they stotting, or will the drummer just stot anybody’s heid in that opens the cupboard?

    No, it’s the drummer who is pronking.
    It’s probably the most intellectual thing he’s ever done. And has the useful benefit of keeping him away from the drum kit…

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

    British Industrial Cheddar?


    The seeping toxins from Depleted BIC shells have been responsible for more post-conflict deaths than land mines. Touching Depleted BIC is the number one cause of limb morbidity requiring amputation in the Falklands since April 1982, accounting for over 13 times the raw number of amputations from British possession in 1833 to March 31, 1982. Moveover, this represents a 410% increase in the annual, per capita amputation rate before Depleted BIC was used on the islands and a whopping 5240% increase in the annual per capita rate since antibiotics went into widespread use after WW2.

    Depleted BIC is a war crime.

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


    Cooking is a very meditative activity for me.

    Cookig works like that for me too. Unless I screw up. Then all the calming effects are annulled, the failure amplifies whatever was bothering me and I want to throw dishes.

  69. toska says

    Fucking hell…
    I hope your neighbor’s friend survives, and I hope your neighbor gets all gun privileges revoked. Stay as safe as possible while living next to a trigger happy asshole.

  70. rq says

    I’m glad to have you on Team Zucchini, but unfortunately, the rest of the Squash are to be shunned.
    I learned to enjoy cooking when I realized it was a lot like chemistry: all that mixing and matching to get a wonderfully delightful, sometimes surprising, delight.

    I hate spam.

  71. morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor says


    Oh yes. I have the 2004 edition of McGee’s book. A hefty tome it is, but I read it like a novel when I got it in 2004. I still refer to it often.
    And I worship at the altar of Brillat-Savarin who said, “Tell me what you eat, and I will tell you what you are.”
    From Wikipedia – “Brillat-Savarin is often considered as the father of low-carbohydrate diet. He considered sugar and white flour to be the cause of obesity and he suggested instead protein-rich ingredients.” I guess I’ll never be a vegetarian.
    And of course the original Joy of Cooking, and the fabulous Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia Child. I have lots of great food books.

  72. rq says

    *happy dance*
    Tony has a day-ate! :D
    I hope you have a good time, with as much kissing (etc.) as everyone consents to!

  73. morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor says

    Hooray Tony!! I hope you have a lovely date. And eat a great meal! And have loads of fun.

  74. morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor says

    Beatrice @ 104,
    That is wonderful music. Although I understand not of word of it, it reminds me of Leonard Cohen.

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

    Well, crap, Morgan.

    There just aren’t any words for situations like this. Yes, I hope friend recovers. Yes, I hope you get to a good place. Yes, I hope that the shooter is held accountable, but it’s just hard for me to begin to understand the mindset that goes from “I am mad at you,” to “I will do something to hurt you or kill you in order to express my anger.”

    What the fuck is it that these folk think violence will accomplish? Absolutely incomprehensible to me. Absolutely.

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


    Hm, maybe a bit. But I have a hard time comparing anyone ot Leonard Cohen. He’s a class of his own.

    Caitie Cat,

    Oh, I’m so sorry.

    Any more appeals or is this it?

  77. says

    Crip Dyke:
    I echo your sentiments.
    On one level, being human, I understand the violent impulse (as I’m sure you do; I don’t mean to imply that you don’t get this). Hell, I’ve had it before and I’ll likely have it again. But it’s been rare when I’ve actually acted on those impulses. What is more common is recognizing that violence isn’t going to solve anything and often will just make things quite a bit worse. And that’s talking about normal violence, not firearm related violence. I have never wished to commit violence on someone with such an extreme measure. *That* I can’t fathom.

  78. opposablethumbs says

    Fuck, morgan, I’m sorry. Hope the neighbour’s friend survives, no thanks to the neighbour.
    Judging by your recipes, you sound like a totally amazing cook. So in a way you have taken something horrendous and deeply mean, like the shit in your upbringing, and made it into something wonderful and generous by your own effort and strength. That’s some amazing alchemy.
    Tony!, yay!!! Hope you both have a really good time and that the whole dating-and-getting-to-know-better-and-better thing just gets better and better :-)
    Oh CaitieCat that is so shitty. I’m so sorry. Bastards. I hope you can have a Hipy Papy day in spite of them.

  79. morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor says

    I’m so sorry they turned down your disability appeal. Did they say why, or just say no? Now what? Can you dispute it? I hope your birthday tomorrow is a much happier day than today.

    And Beatrice, a big Happy B’day to you.

    And CD, I agree wholeheartedly on the incomprehensibility of violence. Is violence mostly just a biochemical reaction? Is it mostly learned? I need to learn more.

    I grew up in a very violent family and the result is that I NEVER EVER resort to violence or even anger. I abhor both.

    I’m leaving a big pile of assorted hugs and chocolate and items of comfort. Help yourself everyone. And Tony, sparklers for you.

  80. morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor says


    I am happy to be an official member of Team Zucchini, and I promise to shun other squashes while in your presence. Speaking of zucchini, a while back I had an abundance of zucchini and fresh basil so I created a variation on lasagne using the zucs, basil pesto and spicy Italian sausage. Beyond yummy. I think I need to dig out the recipe and make it again, in honor of The Team.

    Thanks lovely Horde. You are raising my spirits.

  81. says

    Bad news out of Tennessee:

    A state judge in Tennessee has upheld a law banning recognition of same-sex marriages, snapping the extraordinary winning streak for marriage equality in several dozen state and federal courts since the Supreme Court ruling U.S. v. Windsor in June 2013.

    Circuit Court Judge Russell E. Simmons ruled that Tennessee need not recognize the union of Frederick Michael Borman and Larry Kevin Pyles-Borman, who married in August 2010 in Iowa. The judge invoked Tennessee’s state laws defining marriage as between one man and one woman.

    “Tennessee’s laws further provide that if another state allows persons to marriage who are prohibited from marriage in Tennessee, then that marriage is void and unenforceable in Tennessee,” he wrote in a ruling last Tuesday, which has now been published online by Lyle Denniston of SCOTUSblog. […]



  82. Ray, rude-ass yankee (Whimsy, I has it) says

    Fried spam dipped in spicy brown mustard with potatoes, zucchini… & peas… & horses. So there!

  83. says

    Morgan- Throwing in goood thoughts with the rest on th neighbors friend. I hope he pulls through and hte neighbor gets the book thrown at him.

    In my neck of the woods, I’m all “Ok, I’ll set aside trans research and let stuff sink in for a bit” then chaos in that segment of my Twitter feed erupts over the weekend. That was interesting.

    And then my cars radiator developed a 6 or so inch long crack. Tank along the top just split right open, sprayed coolant everywhere. That killed me financially for the week. At least swapping out a radiator on the 99 Maxima is easy, if it wasn’t, this might have killed me financially for a month or so. Saw some dealer/mechanic prices people reported online… apparently that can easily be over $700 if you have someone do it. Rather than around $130 or so if you do it yourself.

    Started reading hte Sailor Moon manga and watching the new anime. I’m liking it. Tuxedo Mask seems to be a much darker and more ambiguous figure than in the original DiC dub of the old anime. That’s definitely interesting. The first three episodes are fairly close to the manga, and apparently, being closer to the manga was one of the reasons they decided to reboot the anime. Some questionable animation decisions though. You’ll have a scene looking like traditional animation, and then they do a transformation sequence and it looks like a video game cut scene. While setting the transformations off as something special I think is a good idea, I think they should have overall kept either a traditional style, or the video game style, for the whole thing. There is room within that to set the transformations apart. Still, the story is good and the animation at least acceptable.

    I have a question though, to anyone that knows Japanese culture better than I do. Usagi, referring to Ami finds here really cute. The way it was expressed, I wouldn’t expect that from a straight girl in the US. Yes, straight females recognize and comment on other women being attractive, but there seemed to be an expression of attraction, not merely aesthetic appreciation. With Rei, it was even stronger, “So pretty I’d follow her anywhere” or something like that. Given Japanese culture, would it be reasonable to read Usagi as bi, or at least curious, based on these things? I could certainly imagine a culture where these statements might more immediately read as aesthetic statements, rather than attraction statements. SO I’m not sure how I should read it.

  84. says

    Voter restriction laws in action:

    Last Tuesday, Beth Hiller, a 97 year-old nursing home resident from Topeka, Kansas, boarded a shuttle along with several other residents of the nursing home’s health care unit. It was a difficult process for many of the residents, who had limited mobility and depended on wheelchairs or walkers in order to move around. Yet Hiller and her fellow residents also boarded that shuttle intending to exercise one of their most important rights as citizens — the shuttle was there to take them to a nearby polling place so that they could vote in a primary election.

    When Hiller arrived at the polls, however, she was told that she could not exercise her right to vote after all. Hiller was turned away because she did not have a photo ID, and Kansas has a strict voter ID law that disenfranchises voters without identification. Indeed, Kansas’ voter ID law is so strict that it even prohibits voters from casting an absentee ballot unless they have ID.

    To add insult to injury, Hiller was also denied the opportunity to cast a provisional ballot, something she is entitled to do even under the state’s voter ID law, although it is doubtful that it would have made much of a difference if she had cast a provisional vote. Under Kansas’ voter ID law, a voter who casts a provisional ballot because they lack photo ID must still show up at the local election office with identification before their ballot can be counted. […]

    Think Progress link.

  85. Ray, rude-ass yankee (Whimsy, I has it) says

    Shall have to see if I can borrow my older sons marshmello crossbow so I can join in the fun!
    Mmmmm, edible ammunition.

  86. says

    Here’s a great story: a female athlete excels, and she’s only 13 years old. Photo at the link.

    Mo’Ne Davis struck out six batters and allowed just three hits Sunday in leading Philadelphia’s Taney Youth Baseball Association to a berth in the Little League World Series.

    But the reason Davis is such a big story coming into this week’s World Series is only partially explained by the batters who keep swinging and missing. The other reason Davis stands out among the crowd of young ballplayers who will descend on Williamsport, Pennsylvania in the next few days?

    She’s a girl.

    Davis, a 5-foot-4 eighth grader, boasts a 70 mile-per-hour fastball and induced a game-ending double-play to seal her complete game shutout and Taney’s place in Williamsport […]

    Davis, who struck out 10 in a previous outing at the regional tournament, is an honor roll student who has played for a local travel team since she was 7, according to Philadelphia Magazine’s Marc Kravitz. She will become just the 18th girl to play in the Little League World Series since it began allowing them to play in 1974. Emma March of Canada’s South Vancouver Little League will also play in the tournament, making March and Davis just the third pair of girls to appear in the same Little League World Series.

    Another girl, 12-year-old Kayla Roncin of Toms River, New Jersey, struck out 10 batters in 5 1/3 innings of work during the Mid-Atlantic Regional tournament against the same Delaware team Davis baffled in the regional final (Roncin’s team lost before her and Davis could face off on the field).

    Davis and March will make their first appearances at the World Series on Friday, when March’s Canada team takes on Mexico (1 p.m., ESPN) and Davis and Taney meet South Nashville Little League (3 p.m., ESPN). […]

    Think Progress link.

    Game highlights on ESPN.

    Even where no official rules keep them out of baseball, girls face enormous pressure to switch to softball. “They get chased right out of middle-school baseball,” said Jennifer Ring, the author of “Stolen Bases: Why American Girls Don’t Play Baseball,” whose daughter fought to play in high school and played a season on Vassar College’s Division III men’s team. When a girl persists in playing, Ms. Ring said, “you can’t count on it being a good experience, because you have to explain why you’re even there.”

  87. toska says


    On one level, being human, I understand the violent impulse

    The thing I hate so much about guns is that it just takes the smallest violent impulse for something very bad to happen. Although I am against violence in all of its forms, with firearms, it only takes the pull of a trigger to cause death or extreme injury. Without a weapon, people have more time to think and scale back the violence before actually swinging a fist. By the time you could clench a fist, with a gun you could have already pulled the trigger. I would only trust someone with exceedingly high impulse control to handle a weapon in a high stress situation.

  88. Ray, rude-ass yankee (Whimsy, I has it) says

    Happy Birthday, Beatrice!
    Go Tony! Hope you have fun on your date.
    Kevin, hope your back settles down.
    CaitieCat, Happy (early) Birthday!
    Anne, good luck tomorrow!
    For all those I missed: congratulations or condolences as appropriate.

  89. Ray, rude-ass yankee (Whimsy, I has it) says

    Tony! The Queer Shoop@126,
    I’m thinking marshmallows are as deadly as I want to get. Plus edible & biodegradable. Although cooked peas would make a very satisfying spread pattern splat. Hmmm, this need thinking on.

  90. says

    Rightwing religious/political pundits are still mad at Archie comics:

    Tim Wildmon and Ed Vitagliano of the American Family Association are upset about the direction of Archie Comics, and spoke with Religious Right pundit Larry Tomczak on today’s edition of “Today’s Issues” about how Archie is corrupting young people with messages promoting “the occult and homosexuality.”

    Tomczak described how in a recent issue Archie dies while taking a bullet for his gay friend, something Wildmon apparently found hilarious as he cracked up while Tomczek detailed the plot. […]


  91. says

    I’m on a pc today, so let’s see if I can hit all the important notes:

    Zucchini, squash, potatoes and peas are evil. Pumpkin is good in spice bread or pie.

    Horses are good, but not food.

    Anything mushy/ooshy is a ‘hell-no!’

    Beatrice Happy Birthday!

    *squeeee* for Tony! I hope the dates and kissing continue.
    (I’ve never had a hickey.)

    CatieCat Holy shit, they rejected your appeal? What the ever-living hell is wrong with them? I hope you have more avenues to pursue.

    gworroll I’m not super familar with Japanese culture, but I am reasonably familiar with it as portrayed in anime. I also interpreted Usagi as bi in those situations, because they had her blushing and stuttering much like she does around Tuxedo Mask and the blond guy from the arcade whose name I can never remember. Given that female/female relationships are already in the Sailor Moon universe (Uranus and Neptune), it’s a totally reasonable interpretation.

    Also, I hope your car starts behaving.

    Morgan *safehugs*

  92. says

    Thanks, folks – yes, there are more appeals yet, but it’s a matter of finding the emotional energy to push past and try to get them sorted, as they’re a lot more work than the first appeal. It’s all such bullshit, game-playing to see whether it’s serious enough for me to want to push through the crap. :/

    gworroll, I don’t know his source, but TemporaryFlatmateCraig says that Usagi (which I keep wanting to hear as “Unagi”, which is somewhat less flattering) is in fact bi in the reboot. The only thing I don’t like is the sheer length of the transformation scenes. I timed it. The Moon scene is 30 seconds long, as are the others when they’re individual. And it’s identical every time. And the words “Shiny Make Up” make me laugh, because everyone I know who wears makeup wants it NOT shiny. :)

  93. Ray, rude-ass yankee (Whimsy, I has it) says

    Tony! The Queer Shoop@129, I fear you have the advantage of me in weaponized food firepower, but I will never surrender! I will fight on the seas and oceans, whatever the cost may be. I shall adopt guerrilla tactics and only fire marshmallows (or my own overcooked peas) from cover, behind horses. I will find a way to neutralize your “spam juice covered cooked spiral pasta” with my own improvised pasta devices (IPDs) Ha, I say! Ha!
    {scurries off mumbling something about having to work in the morning}
    “G’night all”

  94. says

    Rawnaeris- That’s a good point- whatever the cultural standards at play are, the individual reactions of the character are also important. She does react in much the same way as she does with guys she is clearly attracted to.

    CatieCat- The preexisting female/female relationships do help to make it a plausible interpretation.

  95. says

    Oh this is totally awesome.
    400 protesters drown out a KKK rally

    Approximately 100 members of the Ku Klux Klan took to the streets of Troy, North Carolina on Saturday to protest immigration, but they were drowned out by over 400 counter-protestors who attended the KKK event, The Courier-Tribune reports.

    Instead of a formal speech about installing a “shoot-to-kill” border policy, however, Grand Dragon Chris Barker instead led his fellow Klansmen in what were meant to be rousing shouts of “white power,” “come get some,” and “read the Bible,” according to Jasmine Spencer, who attended the event.

    Troy locals carried signs and responded with mockery, shouting “Don’t come back to Troy, boy!”

    I love reading stuff like this (from the article):

    Another resident, Jack Cagle, said the event was a dream come true. “I have always wanted to talk trash to a grand dragon,” he said.

    Suck it you racist shitstains.

  96. A. Noyd says

    So today I tried to act out the concept of “not careful” by tripping over a chair and falling onto the floor. Might have been a little too realistic given how shocked the students were. But hopefully that made the concept stick. (And I’m sure the students all thought I was bonkers long before this.)


    blf (#77)

    What the feck is “spam juice”? Liquefied penis extender?

    More like jellified butthole puckerer.


    gworroll (#120)

    Started reading hte Sailor Moon manga and watching the new anime. … Some questionable animation decisions though.

    That’s putting it mildly. The animation is some of the worst I’ve ever seen.

  97. says

    Re: Sailor Moon animation. Mostly I find the combination of the old style huuuuuuge eyes with the super defined lips in the otherwise modern style of animation to be really jarring. The animation itself seems smooth enough though.

    I’m also really sad it’s only airing once a fortnight.

  98. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    Has anyone else here ever had the misfortune of encountering the commenter who goes by “Verbose Stoic”? >.>

  99. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    More “sophist” than “stoic,” though.

    I’m just wondering when we’ll see one of his comments submitted half-finished due to his own major intestine, in a desperate attempt to save life and civilization, leaping straight up through his neck and throttling his brain… >.>

  100. cicely says

    blf, I maintain that pumpkin is excellent, in its place.
    Which would be, a pie. Possibly as pumpkin bread.


    Up with Zucchini?

    Maaaybe. Depends.
    Up who? Or what?
    And, is it a consensual action?

    morgan ?!:

    SPAM is a “processed meat food product” produced by Hormel Co.

    Spam is Genuine Imitation Processed Meat Food Product, hence a relative-in-spirit to the hypothesized Genuine Imitation Cheese Food Spread.
    They shall be Anathema.

    Speaking of guns, one of my neighbors got in a tiff with a friend the other night and shot the friend. The friend is still alive, barely. And a good time is had by all here in the rural west.

    I hope the friend recovers.
    Be safe.

    Tony!: I hope your date goes/went well.

    *hugs* for CaitieCat, and a Happy Birthday-ing in advance.
    Sorry about your disability appeal; that sucks, both deep and wide.

    Ray, this is me snubbing you, firmly.
    *pointedly looking some other direction*

    gworroll: My sympathies on the death of your radiator. Malfunctioning automoviles are no fun.

    There’s probably Horse in Spam.
    Food for thought, though not for eating.


    Robin Williams died today. It appears the Black Dog got him.

    :( :( :(

    My heart goes out to Zelda Williams and the rest of his family.

    Mine, too.

  101. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Sigh, typical hospital SNAFU. ICU wanted to move the Redhead “upstairs” to a regular floor. No room in the Inn so to speak. At least they took down the gowning requirements. We talked to the Social Worker, so things are in motion for the discharge plan….

  102. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    And the discharge plans may not need the care originally expected. Still leaves out her former rehab place, which she liked, but doesn’t do wounds….

  103. jste says


    blf, I maintain that pumpkin is excellent, in its place.
    Which would be, a pie. Possibly as pumpkin bread.

    And pumpkin scones. And baked in unwholesome fats and smothered in a thick gravy, served along side whichever meat said fat came from. And in quiche-like things. And and and… Um. I think that’s all. Pot roast? Wait, now I want a pot roast.

  104. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    …anyone have any suggestions on finding information on the acidity of different alcoholic beverages that aren’t “Living Alkaline” woo (apparently that’s a thing…)?

  105. says

    I recall Verbose Stoic commenting at Pharyngula a while back. The nym was well earned.


    My date was quite nice. We had dinner-in the midst of which I found out about Robin Williams…such a damn shame. We talked about a lot of the stuff the Horde talks about here, which was nice. J likes to watch FOX news (and I’m tempted to not say anything further just to imagine ya’lls mouths agape, but I won’t) to see what new idiocy they’re going to spout. He’s on the liberal end of the political spectrum. He recognizes that Obama is a centrist and not a liberal, and that we don’t have a true liberal party in the US (and least not one with any political clout).
    When dinner was over, we watched a movie-American Beauty. I’d never seen it before. I liked it, but between creepy, stalker, boundary crossing neighbor and dad who fantasies about a barely 18 year old girl, the creepy/ick factor was high. I’m glad they didn’t glamorize anything in the movie though. There were consequences to everyone’s actions. Tragic ones in more than a few cases.
    All in all, a very nice evening. Think I’m heading to sleep.

  106. A. Noyd says

    Azkyroth (#150)

    …anyone have any suggestions on finding information on the acidity of different alcoholic beverages that aren’t “Living Alkaline” woo (apparently that’s a thing…)?

    Sorry, I don’t, but I understand your frustration. A few weeks ago I was trying to look up info on the actual health hazards of dryer sheets. It… didn’t go well.

    Wait, I know. Set up a fundraiser for testing all the alcoholic beverages yourself!

  107. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    So I spent a whole 38 minutes on the phone today with a friend who’s having surgery tomorrow. Can borrow a few thumbs?

  108. says

    All my hopes for your friend.

    Happy Bday!
    American Beauty is a very well done film; the factors you mention are there deliberately, to throw the creepiness of it into relief, I think.

    …anyone have any suggestions on finding information on the acidity of different alcoholic beverages

    The pH of most booze is going to be as near to 7 as makes no difference, but slightly on the acidic side. Mixed drinks will vary depending on what they’re mixed with, but plenty of mixers are on the acidic side (e.g. citrus juices, coffee, etc.)

    that aren’t “Living Alkaline” woo (apparently that’s a thing…)?

    That explains the places I’ve seen selling ‘Alkaline Water’. When I was a kid we went to some lengths to make our water less alkaline (it came from a well, and had a bit of a flavor to it, which was better reduced).

  109. rq says


    Fuck them for turning down your appeal. Stupid government organizations. :(

  110. blf says

    The pH of most booze is going to be as near to 7 as makes no difference…

    The figures I am finding puts “beer” at a pH of c.4, and “wine” with a slightly lower pH (more acidic). Mixed drinks are all over the map, probably due to the mixers, but I haven’t found much on the liquors themselves. And, of course, “beer” and “wine” are both quite broad categories, I suspect there is far more variation there then the simple numbers I’m finding.

  111. blf says

    Harold McGee, in On Food and Cooking, says “The acid content of a wine is important in preventing it from tasting bland or flat; it’s sometimes said to provide the ‘backbone’ for the wine’s overall flavor. White wines are usually around 0.85% acid, red wines 0.55%.”

  112. says

    Will someone please remove this large Black Dog from my chest?

    Yeah. One of those days. Well… multiple days. There isn’t even an identifiable thing that’s bugging me, it’s everything and nothing all at once.

    I’d like to sleep until this passes, but sleep brings dreams, and dreams bring more sad feels.

    Meh. So long as I can reasonably function, I’ll give this time to pass.

  113. bassmike says

    As usual I’ve missed a lot of stuff over the weekend.

    Happy Birthday to Beatrice and CaitieCat and sorry to hear that your appeal was turned down.

    Sympathies to WMDKitty there are so many of us that suffer from the Black Dog. I’m beginning to wonder if it is the default human setting rather than an exception.

    Thumbs at the ready for Azkyroth

    Tony I’m so pleased for you. New relationships are so exciting. I hope things develop in the way that you want. You deserve it all!

    On the subject of cooking: due to the excess of rain on Sunday we were stuck inside so I baked some cakes with my daughter. Just a simple sponge with chopped cherries. She enjoyed helping…and eating the finished product! I then went on to cook a roast dinner for us. I spent a lot of time in the kitchen on Sunday.

  114. opposablethumbs says

    Crossing my fingers for friend-of-Azkyroth. And for the Black Dog to leave people in peace.

  115. says


    *hugs* because of administration assholes
    And *tröööööööööööööööt* Happy Birthday anyway

    My cousin sent pictures of their 16 months old foster? adoptive? daughter (I don’t know the legal status exactly). I especially like the one where she’s toddling at the hand of her 5 yo “nephew”. :)
    Another reason to got to Berlin in autumn.

  116. blf says

    Will someone please remove this large Black Dog from my chest?

    The Aliens are mutating!?

  117. birgerjohansson says

    Infodump below (medical news, mostly about cancer research).
    (Most readers will find the links boring,but I post them to show that A LOT is happening that will transform health care for disease once thought incurable. Just hang in there for a decade as basic reserarch turn into clinical results.)
    -Newly discovered heart molecule could lead to effective treatment for heart failure http://medicalxpress.com/news/2014-08-newly-heart-molecule-effective-treatment.html
    -Venom gets good buzz as potential cancer-fighter http://phys.org/news/2014-08-venom-good-potential-cancer-fighter.html What they do is go directly to the tumor, where they bind to cancer stem cells, blocking their growth and spread.
    -Synthetic molecule makes cancer self-destruct http://phys.org/news/2014-08-synthetic-molecule-cancer-self-destruct.html Might also work for treating diseases such as cystic fibrosis. To be useful in treating cancer, a version of a chloride anion transporter will have to be developed that binds only to cancerous cells.
    -Scientists demonstrate long-sought drug candidate can halt tumor growth; disrupting the function of MYC, a cancer regulator thought to be “undruggable.” http://medicalxpress.com/news/2014-08-scientists-long-sought-drug-candidate-halt.html
    -Master regulator of key cancer gene found, offers new drug target; A key cancer-causing gene, responsible for up to 20 percent of cancers may have a weak spot in its armor. http://medicalxpress.com/news/2014-06-master-key-cancer-gene-drug.html

  118. says

    Also, I feel the need to mention that the English way of naming vegetables sucks.

    Why on earth do you need cucumber and gherkin? Seriously, the vegetable is a Gurke and when you pickle it it become a Saure Gurke. And pumpkin and squash and zucchini and courgette and then you draw the fucking lines differently in different countries.
    Here’s the easy way: If it’s soft on the outside you call it Zucchini. If it’s yellow you can call it Gelbe Zucchini. Everything else is Kürbis and you simply specify which variety you mean by putting something like Butternut, Hokaido, Spaghetti and so on in front of it. But nonono you need to have some special rules as to what is what.
    Seriously, and then some people claim that English was a language that is very good at classfying things.

    /End non-native speaker rant

  119. blf says

    Vegetable names are easy: If it is a squash, pea, celery, or horse or similar (e.g., brussel sprouts), Who Cares What Is Called — just Run Away! Run Away!!

    Otherwise, it is edible. So Eat It (Who Cares What It is Called?).

    Just don’t call it cheese or else you will upset a certain penguin. And confuse the real cheese plants, which tends to spoil that year’s vintage. (Very sensitive, most cheese plants. Even the mobile carnivorous ones.)

  120. rq says

    Oooookaaaaay, so I thought yesterday was bad driving weather. Cue God (or, you know, just that massive system of on-again, off-again, unpredictable rain that we’ve been experiencing now that the heat-wave is officially over). I have not experienced white-out conditions due to rain in… ever? But I made it to work.
    I hope the weather-nasties up there either hurry up and get finished while I’m here, or hold out until I’m at home, because that will not be fun at all once it’s dark.

    *hugs* for the Horde.

    I could agree, except my years growing up in Canada have biased me towards more specific and colourful nomenclature, and I still get confused in Latvian grocery stores in the pumpkin aisle… Because obviously, they are not all ‘ķirbji’, some of them are squash – which is also ‘ķirbis’! And then my brain dances away the pain and I move on. To the ‘kabači’, which are obviously zucchini but not ‘cukīni’. *sigh* I guess there’s no standardizing language.

  121. says

    Geez. Those driving conditions sound horrendous. I hope it all clears up before you head home later today.

    I cannot believe I woke up at 6:30 am. I’ve gone to bed later than that before. I guess that’s what happens when you go to bed at 11:30 pm (which is vewwy, vewwy, early for me).

  122. blf says

    I have not experienced white-out conditions due to rain

    Lots of fun on a bicycle. (Fortunately, it was a mountain bike, not a road racing bike, so I had a certain amount of control, if almost no visibility or brakes…)

    Even the Gore-Tex® rainsuit gave up (unsurprisingly).

  123. blf says

    I cannot believe I woke up at 6:30 am.

    Your timezone or someone else’s? And do you the other person(s?)?

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

    tony, I’m very happy about your date.

    While you didn’t describe it as the best date any small group of humans have ever had, it does sound like a nice evening. And when one hasn’t been dating for a while, a nice “I can do this” evening that doesn’t set unrealistic expectations for future experiences (with whomever) might best suit your needs…regardless of what would have suited your desires.

    Conga rats are dancing for you.

    As for rejected appeals, they suck. As for birthdays, they rock. As for the idiosyncrasies of language, well, while they suck to learn, it’s just those things that allow those of us who put in the practice to have quite a lot of fun playing with language(s).

    More later. Kids calling.

  125. Brony says

    Good afternoon everyone (or your time of day).
    Robin Williams? Really? Damn…

    @ Nerd of Redhead, cicely
    I hope your situations get sorted out. I’m continually amazed at the sort of health problems that get roadblocks and red-tape problems.

    @ Azkyroth, Tony
    Got a Verbose Stoic link? I’m curious.

    @ WMDKitty
    Hang in there! Depression is hard to throw off because it’s a reinforcing emotional filter. Those sorts of things think they don’t want to leave be we don’t deal with environments as brutal as our ancestors so our emotions can get mismatched with reality.

    @ bassmike

    I’m beginning to wonder if it is the default human setting rather than an exception.

    It would be fair to say that negative interpretations of things are easier than positive ones. This may have to do with the fact that missing the lion that was there does not leave descendents (false negative threat detection), but thinking you saw a lion when you do not (false positive threat detection) does leave descendents.

  126. blf says

    I hear that a spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down.

    It also help the medicine on the way back up.

  127. rq says

    those of us who put in the practice

    It’s on my to-do list. Somehow I never get down that far.

  128. blf says

    It’s on my to-do list. Somehow I never get down that far.

    Oh, a linearist. Reads lists in only one direction. You’ll never get anything done, which, provided that’s not the first item on yer list, is usually seen as a problem. (Solution at bottom of list.)

    Trying reading the lists non-linearly. E.g., throw dice and read the indicated item. Feed the list to a cat, and read the first vomited-up item. Burn the list and then read everything that isn’t too charred. Write each item on the list on a separate piece of paper, fold into paper aeroplanes, and have a distance contest; read the ‘plane which landed closest to you.

    Then go do something else. Feck whatever it is you read.

  129. rq says

    You’re right, of course.
    (Incidentally, I translate for a firm called Linearis. Your choice of words is freaking me out. (Ah, coincidence…!))

  130. blf says

    Your choice of words is freaking me out. (Ah, coincidence…!)

    You fink that was a coincidence?!

  131. cicely says

    Well, I don’t think I’ll be getting a grandSon for my birthday. Not unless he gets a wiggle on.

    Tony!, I’m glad your date went well.
    :) :) :)

    *proffering a bucket-o-thumbs* to Azkyroth.
    Take these for your friend.

    *scritches* and sympathy for WMDKitty.

    (Very sensitive, most cheese plants. Even the mobile carnivorous ones.)

    Especially the mobile carnivorous ones.

    Brony, my health-related woes are relatively trivial. I think you probably meant CaitieCat?

  132. blf says

    I don’t think I’ll be getting a grandSon for my birthday.

    Not to worry, babies are not really a prime cake ingredient, unless you’re thinking of something along the lines of mincemeat pie…

  133. Brony says

    @ cicely
    Damn it yes. My head likes to swap things inappropriately and for some reason names can be a problem. Didn’t I do that to CaitieCat last time too? I’m sorry CaitieCat.

  134. says

    It’s really quite alright, Brony, and anyone else. I will never complain at being mistaken for cicely, in the same way i wouldn’t complain about being mistaken for Maya Angelou, or Ruth Bader-Ginsburg, or any other Woman of Awesomeness. :)

  135. Brony says

    That was you and cicely I confused last time! It’s funny in a way because I don’t think it’s a coincidence. I have discovered that bad habits can be created in me just as easily as good habits. That’s one of the downsides to being a more pattern based thinker that can jump around in lists or books, and one of the reasons I double check myself a lot. Taking personal characteristics into account can get really weird.

  136. blf says

    I have discovered that bad habits can be created in me just as easily as good habits.

    You will mail a certain penguin a wheel of cheese every week (c/o me).
    You will mail a certain penguin a wheel of cheese every week (c/o me).
    You will mail a certain penguin a wheel of cheese every week (c/o me).
    You will mail a certain penguin a wheel of cheese every week (c/o me).
    You will mail a certain penguin a wheel of cheese every week (c/o me).
    You will mail a certain penguin a wheel of cheese every week (c/o me).
    You will mail a certain penguin a wheel of cheese every week (c/o me).
    You will mail a certain penguin a wheel of cheese every week (c/o me).
    You will mail a certain penguin a wheel of cheese every week (c/o me).

  137. morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor says


    Might I tentatively and humbly suggest that we commence construction of Teh Commune? I’m feeling great need of a place of refuge from the horrors of this country. Or maybe I should just leave the country, but where would I go? Sigh.

    Actually, it is my responsibility to stay and fight all the ignorant fuckers out there. But there are so damn many more of them.

  138. rq says

    Sadly, we haven’t yet settled on any location. Personally, I like this one. But other people have expressed preferences for things like ‘tropics’ and ‘no winter’. Any ideas?

  139. Brony says

    Nice try blf! But the things that get imprinted have particular emotional resonance and are often context sensitive. Names have an interesting sort of “read/write” head.

  140. morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor says

    I know, Tony. I’m reading it. BTW, I can’t help thinking about you being without a car and walking home at night. You, or any other black person are easy targets. Seems to be open season on black folks. Can I make a request? If you are offered a ride home at night, please accept it. I worry. We worry.

  141. says

    This from the really big category of Fox News Pundits Say Stupid Stuff:

    Keith Ablow, Fox News’ psychiatry contributor and adult baby, was on Outnumbered today to talk about First Lady Michelle Obama’s various health campaigns and to spew general hate.

    “I can’t pack things [my kids are] not going to eat, so we have to find a happy medium,” said Kennedy. “We don’t need the federal government applying, projecting these standards on us. Michelle Obama is like the duchess when she speaks about this.”

    At that point, Keith Ablow thought he could win some ratings with the absurd notion that Michelle is not a good role model when it comes to health: “And how well could she be eating?” he asked. “She needs to drop a few. I mean I’m telling you, let’s be honest. Who are we taking nutrition advice from? Let’s be honest there are no french fries happening? That’s all kale and carrots? I don’t buy it. I’m just saying, her husband, I’d like some nutrition information from Barack.”

    His co-hosts audibly gasped and attempted to interrupt his verbal excreting, except for ole reliable Kennedy who chimed in with a poorly thought out Queens tough guy accent, “Yeah, Michelle Obama, she needs to lose some junk in the trunk,” and “I like her booty.” […]


    May I just say that Michelle Obama’s body is just fine. And besides all that, she’s an intelligent and effective leader, so body type is way down on the list of things on which Fox News should comment.

  142. morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor says


    I’m sure not picky about our commune location, as long as it isn’t too hot. I just want this retreat available now. Would be nice, doncha think? And I would be the chef.

  143. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    @ Azkyroth, Tony
    Got a Verbose Stoic link? I’m curious.

    Most recently cited here, though observable on several previous entries in that series.

    I’m not sure linking just one thread fully encapsulates his infuriating arguing-for-the-sake-of-arguing.

    Money quote:

    I haven’t read the book, but for the argument to work shouldn’t the key points be quoted in the argument?

  144. rq says

    I’m all for it!
    And my oh my, did that thread just blow up, just when I thought I had something smart to say. :/ Eep.

  145. blf says

    Sadly, we haven’t yet settled on any location. … Any ideas?

    Commission a planet from Magrathea.

  146. morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor says

    You are hereby deputized to commence commissioning a planet.

  147. says


    Can I make a request? If you are offered a ride home at night, please accept it. I worry. We worry.

    I appreciate the concern, and it’s been in the back of my mind, nibbling away at me. I don’t know that I’ll accept a ride home for certain, but I lean more strongly towards not opposing it.

  148. says

    The penguin was replaced by the ladybug. All future endeavors needing the assistance of the Lounge mascot must be performed with the lovely ladybug.


    There appears to be a lull in that thread.

  149. rq says

    Also, Tony, re: what morgan said about worrying… Yeah, I do, too. Please do consider the ride.
    (And it is so utterly, and painfully, STUPID and heartbreaking that you should have to do so, and that we even ask you to do so. :( )

  150. Brony says

    Actually there is another aside in that accidental name switch that is more broadly useful. It’s hard to be certain, but I was nervous and new to a community and worried about making mistakes. Under that emotional context I was writing to memory in a particular emotional context. I made a mistake and “SNAP” a connection was made.

    This sort of thing describes lots of things like depression as well where emotional contexts can create all sorts of ways of remembering and recalling reality. Brains are screwy, interesting, and fucked up things.

  151. morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor says


    I’m acquiring wheels of cheese as we speak. Would British Industrial Cheddar be acceptable?

  152. says

    Happy International Left Hander’s Day this Wednesday, August 13th. There are quite a lot of us.

    Make sure your children’s schools are teaching your kids how to write properly, some won’t make the extra effort required. And remember at work today to staple all your papers at the top right hand corner or along the right hand side. The papers will open to the right and be easier to write on with the left hand. Let the righties deal with a creased spine for one day.

    I mentioned this a while back elsewhere in Ms. Benson’s Withdrawing Room. I said I wouldn’t harp on about it, so I’ll mention it this once.

  153. blf says

    morgan, Whilst the stuff is indestructible, it is not a very good substance for making a planet out-of. As one example, you can’t carve it into fjords. It’s also inedible, and so will neither care for or provide the right sort of attention-to the mildly deranged penguin. However, it is effective against ladybug impostors, but so are flyswatters and car windscreens.

    So, well, basically, no. Sorry!

  154. morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor says


    Yeah, I’m missing the crotchety old girl, too. Perhaps BIC is of insufficient quality to tempt her return. Suggestions?

  155. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    Motion passes.

    …ironic given all the disdain for rich sources of fiber around here :P

  156. rq says

    I’ll think on it on the way home. Limburger comes to mind, just off the top of my head (I think the security guard was having some earlier, eeewwww).

  157. blf says

    I kind of liked having the penguin around.

    She’ll eventually show up. Probably with a BANG! and the Transdimensional Watch’s Interuniversal Taskforce (TWIT) in hot pursuit. In the meantime, enjoy the quiet, savour the cheese, the hide the MUSHROOMS!

  158. cicely says

    *throwing up hands in frustrated dismay*
    My compliments and respect to those who are able to stick out the stoopid on the Robin Williams thread.

    CaitieCat…you are being utterly ridiculous; I am merely a Woman of Adequateness.
    But I would be delighted to sign on as your Comedy Relief Sidekick, if you should find yourself in need of one.


    This from the really big category of Fox News Pundits Say Stupid Stuff

    At last!…a use for that Acme ™ Bottomless Pit I got on sale from Dungeon Supply Warehouse!

    Brony, it’s okay, truly!

  159. blf says

    I have been paying no attention to the Mr Williams thread. Is it possible to summarize the stooopid in, say, ten words or less without creating a black hole of stoooooopidityyyyy…?

  160. says

    “PZ is a poopyhead and shouldn’t be interfering with our worship of the dead comedian, and it’s just a bummer that he has to bring up that stupid feral animal and his deserved shooting.”

    It’s not ten words, but it shouldn’t take too long to get through.

  161. blf says

    Please don’t tell me someone said or implied what currently looks like a deliberate extrajudicial execution / assassination by a paramilitary is a “stupid feral animal and his deserved shooting” !

  162. says

    Guh. Time for a lie down, meds-taking sort of thing.

    Seeing the flood of MORALLY OUTRAGED trolls on that thread (literal quote: “this is the most contemptible thing I’ve ever read from an atheist”) is truly discouraging.

    And absolutely no one seems to want to acknowledge or hear my point about depression and suicidality being non-identical categories, so we keep having the two constantly conflated, which isn’t doing my own depression any good. :/

    So, turning off the mail sync on my phone, and going to lie down for a couple of hours til my meds kick in.

  163. morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor says

    Do you think this will tempt the MDP to return:

    Two slices wonderful bread of choice
    Several white mushrooms, sliced, caramelized in butter
    Generous grating of Gruyere cheese

    Lightly butter both sides of both bread slices. Spread mushrooms on one slice, topped with grated cheese. Top with second slice of bread. Toast in a panini press until lightly browned. Enjoy with a small green salad and a chilled glass of Prosecco.

  164. says

    John Oliver skewers payday lenders.

    Excellent coverage. There are more payday loan lending outlets than there are Starbucks or McDonalds in the USA. This is a big problem. Three quarters of the borrowers that use these services do not pay the short-term loan off in time. They get socked with high interest rates and fees. “Recycling human misery.”

  165. blf says

    Oh for feck’s sake! I just finished the bottle of vin — correction, of Retsina (which worked quite well with tonight’s dinner of kebab and feta cheese, despite reminding one of turpentine) — and now it’s boiling out of my ears.

    (Does anyone know the ignition point of Retsina? I fear an explosion…)

  166. morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor says

    The autoignition point of ethanol is a few orders of magnitude higher than human body temp, so I guess you are safe, but you might avoid open flames for a while.

  167. Brony says

    I would summarize things with this comment blf.

    Many of the people coming in are essentially “attacking” and the have a nice tight little objection and context in mind (with many ways of protecting that little structure). Sure we can’t get at the underlying emotions driving them directly, but the way they slide around what people really say, and differences in experience and social power (they have to avoid that to avoid talking about social justice) there is clearly something motivating them. And it’s not addressing what people are actually saying and doing, even if just to disagree.

    I have a fascination with “internet fights”.

  168. morgan ?! epitheting a metaphor says

    The RW thread is exhausting. Thank you everyone who is posting there and fighting the good fight. I fear what we have now is simply the blockheaded trolls who will keep it up until either they get banned or PZ shuts it down. Anybody want to make book on how many comments will ultimately be posted?

  169. rq says

    Stop it with the delicious food! *drools*
    And I have a cheese for you – it is (creatively) called Latvian cheese, and it stinks to high heaven (despite not having any mould on it), but is rather delightful eating. :)


    That #IfTheyGunnedMeDown hashtag is making me tear up. There’s just… not enough justice in this world to go around, apparently. Gahds I wish I knew how to do better.

  170. Brony says

    @ cicely

    Brony, it’s okay, truly!

    I don’t think there is a way to portray this well over the internet, but I entered the “I’m fascinated by the shape that my flaws take on an intellectual level” frame of mind. I guess it’s hard to get across without looking like I’m defensively talking about it :P

  171. rq says

    Right, I’m out for the night. (Tony, what’s ‘the other thread’ referenced in the RW?)
    Good job, everyone fighting the stupid. I’d stick around, but unfortunately time-zones. I’ll see what I can do about throwing in a good word and some logic tomorrow morning.

  172. says

    Hugs, congratulations, crossed appendages for those in need of same.

    Aged Mum’s phone counseling session went well, we learned all about reverse mortgages and the interviewer ran some numbers for her – looks like she maybe eligible for some government assistance. I need to contact the BiL who has been talking to lender people so he can do whatever the next step is.

    And then I got home to an email from my favorite cousin. Her brother (who is also good people) had called her – his wife had died suddenly. I get to tell AM, but I’m going to wait until tomorrow when she’ll call anyway, because I’m worn out and she probably is too.

    I read the Robin Williams thread. I admire and thank all of you who’ve been fighting the good fight over there, and I don’t know how you’ve kept your respective cools so well. I’m staying out of it.

  173. toska says


    And absolutely no one seems to want to acknowledge or hear my point about depression and suicidality being non-identical categories, so we keep having the two constantly conflated, which isn’t doing my own depression any good.

    There are a lot of people in that thread throwing around armchair diagnoses with no confirmation. It really is disheartening to see generalizing statements about mental illness. I have to say that, although I didn’t acknowledge your point in that thread, it was a good reminder for me. Diagnosing RW with depression on internet forums is a bit like labeling Elliot Rodgers (SB shooter) with all sorts of mental health issues that were never diagnosed.
    Take care of yourself, and know that your point did bring things in perspective for at least one person.

  174. Funny Diva says

    Delurking to leave a wagon-load of grog, one of chocolate-covered bacon and another of hugs or other acceptable expressions of thanks, support and respectful affection for Inaji, Tony! The Queer Shoop and all other Hordelings for their *tireless* efforts (all! day! long!) over in the [not really about] Robin Williams thread.
    I’m sorry this round of Fighting the Good Fight has been necessary, but so very glad you’ve been there to fight it. Your comments give anyone and everyone making a genuine, good faith effort to understand the serious problems PZ’s post is critiquing the explanation and information to do so. (It’s a shame, though unsurprising, that the point-missers, water-muddiers and well-poisoners on that thread are so much louder and more persistent than any temporarily under-informed commenters of actual goodwill/good faith).

  175. Esteleth is Groot says

    So, I picked a great day to say, “Hey, I haven’t read FTB in a few. Let me see what’s going on.”

    I’ve been feeling quite raw lately, so I decided to inveigh myself of the free 10-sessions thing the student counseling services offers. So after a extraordinarily complicated process (seriously, it was way too complicated, and “Are you having an acute crisis? Are you suicidal? Are you in danger?” should be asked well before the 30-minute mark) I’ve made an appointment for tomorrow morning.

  176. Funny Diva says

    Also, too:
    wagon-loads of support and comforting wishes to everyone who’s dealing with depression or other mental illness and had the coverage/discussion of Robin Williams’s death make things more difficult and painful…again. Thank you for being here to remind me that I need to care about your struggle too.

  177. Funny Diva says

    Oh, phooey. HTML tag-closing failure. Only the second line of #251 was supposed to be hyperlink. *sigh*. (I even _tried_ to close the darned tag, too, honest!)

  178. shala says

    Hello again everyone. It’s been a really, really long time since I last posted, though I’ve remained lurking and reading the main posts of Pharyngula whenever I had the chance. I’m hoping to get the chance to post a lot more now.

    Best wishes for those suffering.

  179. says

    Thanks, toska. That helps a lot.

    shala, it’s nice to have you back, though I don’t think I was here when you were before. I saw your interaction with Inaji in That Thread, and anyone who’s okay with Inaji is okay with me. I hope you’ll feel comfortable to stay for a while. :)

    *hugs* and bukabrollies all ’round, my dears. Her Ex-Cellency came by with a birthday tea and donut, a lovely surprise. Sad that we’re supposed to have rain all night again, meaning three days of the Perseid peak will have gone by without getting to see any of my natal meteors. I’m hopeful it’ll clear tomorrow night.

  180. says

    Tony, I know Portia hasn’t been in the Lounge much lately, a lot going on for her. If it’s important, you could e-mail her directly at bravo plus her nym @ the google thingy. If you can’t follow my description, e-mail me and I’ll send you it in the clear.

  181. says

    Thanks, but I’m sure Portia is sleeping right now, and I kinda need a response fairly soon (I already checked Facebook, and she’s not on; last I chatted with her there, she said work was keeping her busy). Ah well. My mistake for waiting so long.
    Basically I have to go before a judge for some sort of pre-trial hearing. It involves not paying a $1400 credit card bill in some time, and they’re taking me to court. It’s tomorrow @1:30. I’ve never appeared in court before, and I was just curious if there’s anything I should know…how I should dress…that kind of thing.
    Hell it’s not like they can get anything out of me, seeing as I’m jobless at the moment.
    I’m such a horrible procrastinator, I could have asked long ago, but I wait til the day before (night before really), to ask for any advice. It was tickling the back of my mind all day, and into tonight during my third date with J. Not enough to ruin it, but I felt like I couldn’t relax as much as I wanted.

  182. Esteleth is Groot says

    Tony! I have limited advice to offer, but as for dress, I’d suggest a suit and tie, or failing that at minimum khakis and a pressed collared shirt.

  183. says

    Understandable, Tony. If it were me, I’d go for something neat but comfortable, given the likely local weather. No point in going all suited up and being drenched in sweat the whole day. Also, expect to wait; in my experience, courts are rarely on time.

    I don’t know what your usual speaking register is, but there’s a tendency in middle and working-class people to try and “talk up” when in court or formal situations. If this fits you, try and remember to just stay with your natural register, speak in the way most comfortable to you, so you’ll have less risk of saying things you didn’t want or mean to say. Be honest, but don’t volunteer information you’re not asked about, unless you’re testifying for yourself.

    As much as I hate to say it, keeping your temper is important too. The judge may well react poorlier* than you, if you don’t. I hate to say it because the way the system is stacked against poor folk is reasonably enraging, but it’s a place where being appropriately deferential is part of the dance. :/

    Hope it goes well for you. Solidarity, brother.

    * Shhh, it’s late and I’m tired and sore. :)

  184. PatrickG says

    Inaji/A Hermit:

    I know not your intent, but I’m sobbing in front of my keyboard right now. In the midst of a depressive episode, to have two people come down so hard on me after I expressed such clear indication of mental health struggles and suicidal ideation… It was a troll-infested thread, and I guess I just feel like a casualty. I may not be a regular-regular, but I’ve been commenting for years, and … really, Dear Muslima? That’s how you read me?

    I don’t even know why I’m posting this. I’m just completely crushed and felt like I had to say something, and that thread certainly wasn’t the place.

  185. PatrickG says

    You know what, don’t even bother responding. I’ll just stay away from Pharyngula comments sections for a while. It never ends well for me, and that’s my problem.

  186. says

    PatrickG isn’t the only one sobbing right now. Please go read this. I just wrote it in the Williams thread.
    And while you’re at it, can I have a hug please? Or ten, because I can’t stop shaking and crying right now. I shouldn’t have to worry about walking home at night and facing the kinds of things that people of color do in this country.
    It’s just not motherfucking fair.
    (no nothing happened tonight. J drove me home, but that thread…that fucking thread just HIT ME like a fucking runaway train and I just feel so small, and so fucking powerless right now)

  187. Brony says

    As many hugs as I can spare for Tony, Patrick and everyone else.

    This is not hitting me as personally and I am happy to help.

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

    Good luck!

    I have stopped following that thread so I have no idea what was going on, but *hugs* and take care.

  189. FossilFishy (NOBODY, and proud of it!) says

    copypasta from the RW thread.

    It matters to me too.
    And I’ll go further. I suffer from depression, I attempted suicide. I wish PZ hadn’t used this particular argument to make his point, but his point is obvious to me and I agree with it. I agree with you.
    But then, I spent the better part of two years of my youth being hunted, for lack of a better term, by bullies in my neighbourhood. I can’t breath properly through my nose and I have one tooth that doesn’t line up because of those bullies. I can’t sleep at night with an unlocked door or window in the house, even thirty years after those events.
    You could say that I’ve had empathy for the vulnerable in society beat into me, and I’ll be fucked if I know how to make those who haven’t had that awful training understand your experience. Hell, I can’t even imagine what it must be like for it to go on, and on, and on, instead of just for a couple of years. Or of how it must feel that the very institutions that protect people, select people, are the ones that must be feared.
    All the hugs. All of ‘em.

  190. toska says

    I’m so sorry for your pain. I’m sorry that so many people care so little about the struggles (struggles? Seems like such a meaningless word when we’re talking about murder and threat of murder) of PoC. And I’m especially sorry that so many PoC are terrorized, not only by civilians, but by the government as well.
    I hope you get all of the hugs you need tonight. And I hope Michael Brown can be a tipping point for this country to finally change.

  191. Brony says

    Sleep Tony. For what it is worth I will be your brute around here all I can. Rhetorical whack-a-mole.

  192. Funny Diva says

    Adding moar virtual hugs to the pile for Tony and Patrick G. And anything else comforting and/or conducive to restorative sleep.

  193. blf says

    Fields Medal mathematics prize won by woman for first time in its history:

    Maryam Mirzakhani, who was born and raised in Iran, has been awarded the highest honour a mathematician can attain

    “I am thrilled that this day has finally come,” Sir Tim Gowers, a Fields medallist and mathematician at Cambridge University, told the Guardian. “Although women have contributed to mathematics at the highest level for a long time, this fact has not been visible to the general public. I hope that the existence of a female Fields medallist, who will surely be the first of many, will put to bed many myths about women and mathematics, and encourage more young women to think of mathematical research as a possible career.”

    It was Mirzakhani’s brother who first piqued her interest in science. He used to come home from school and talk over what he had learned. He told her the story of the German mathematician, Carl Friedrich Gauss, who displayed his precocious skills as a schoolboy when he worked out in seconds how to sum all the numbers from 1 to 100. (The answer is 5,050 and the trick is to look at pairs that add up to 101.) “That was the first time I enjoyed a beautiful solution, though I couldn’t find it myself,” she said.

    The seed that had been sown began to germinate, with help from her school principal, a strong-willed woman who made every effort to ensure her students had the same opportunities as the boys. …

    Mirzakhani declined an interview, but she told Oxford University that while maths was not for everyone, many students did not give it a real chance. She did poorly at maths for several years at school because she was not interested in the subject. “I can see that without being excited mathematics can look pointless and cold. The beauty of mathematics only shows itself to more patient followers,” she said.

    Speaking to the American Mathematical Society last year, she said the situation for women in mathematics was still far from ideal. “The social barriers for girls who are interested in mathematical sciences might not be lower now than they were when I grew up. And balancing career and family remains a big challenge. It makes most women face difficult decisions which usually compromise their work,” she said.

    Frances Kirwan at Oxford University, one of Britain’s leading mathematicians, said: “Maths is a hugely rewarding subject, but sadly many children lose confidence very early and never reap those rewards. It has traditionally been regarded as a male preserve, though women are known to have contributed to its development for centuries – more than 16 centuries if we go back to Hypatia of Alexandria.

  194. blf says

    Archaeologists uncover vast ancient tomb in Greece:

    Site dates to end of Alexander the Great’s reign in 4th century BC and may be grave of a prominent Macedonian, say officials

    Archaeologists have unearthed a vast ancient tomb in Greece, distinguished by two sphinxes and frescoed walls and dating to 300–325BC, the government announced on Tuesday.

    Archaeologists have found two sphinxes, thought to have guarded the tomb’s entrance, and a 4.5-metre-wide road leading into it, with walls on both sides covered by frescoes. It is circled by a 497-metre marble outer wall.

    Experts believe a five-metre-tall lion sculpture previously discovered nearby once stood atop the tomb. …

  195. carlie says

    Hugs for everyone, extra for everyone who was in the RW thread and upset by it, and Tony, I wish I could just hold you and stroke your forehead until you fall asleep.

    This week is a really tough week for me because of Reasons, so I was a little more forceful than usual in that thread – I’m really upset about Ferguson and the treatment of POC in general, but I was also displacing a whole lot of other hurt and frustration onto it. If I stepped on anyone I shouldn’t have while making my points, I’m sorry.

  196. katybe says

    This seems like a good place to leave a standing ovation for Tony for the power in your words, and as many hugs and good wishes from a stranger as are acceptable. I may not comment often, but you’re one of the people I most admire in here.

  197. says

    I was reading one of my security blogs this morning – Bruce Schneier – and he linked to an IT specialist who tricked a telemarketer into resetting their telephone to factory settings.

    I was not amused for the briefest moment with regards to that, because thanks to that IT specialist, someone may have lost a job.

    I don’t care if you think telemarketers are the devil. Say “no thanks” and hang up if you don’t like getting called by them.

  198. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I don’t care if you think telemarketers are the devil. Say “no thanks” and hang up if you don’t like getting called by them.

    I like to tell them I’m in the do-not-call registry, so their call is a federal crime. *Which isn’t being enforced like it should be*

  199. opposablethumbs says

    Kevin #282, yes, I agree. It’s a total pain in the arse getting those calls, but it’s not the fault of the poor bastard trying to earn a living at the other end of the phone. I usually say something about how I’m sorry and I know it’s a hard job before ending the call.

    Not when it’s an actual scam, though. Them, I tell it’s disgusting before slamming down the phone. Had a few of those in recent months, including one lot known to the police and who I actually saw featured on TV a few weeks later – crimewatch or something – warning people about them!

  200. opposablethumbs says

    Has anyone heard of or from Ogvorbis?

    Ogvorbis, if you see this – you are missed. Very much hope you are OK.

  201. opposablethumbs says

    Tony!, fuck I am so sorry about all the crap that’s being flung on that thread and about what it’s putting you through. All the hugs and well wishes to you.