1. says

    Brony @498:

    When blogging what are good considerations to keep in mind when dealing with sensitivities in your group that you want to blog about? I already have a list of things I know have to careful with. But I was curious if there were any opinions that were more generally applicable?

    I’m not sure I completely understand what you’re asking here, but for my approach, I don’t blog with any specific considerations in mind. My blogging is approached from a humanist, atheist, feminist perspective, but it’s rather across the board. I use my blog to express my ideas, my concerns, and frustrations. I also use it to point out some of the good in the world for a better balance. I’d say my main focus is on feminism and LGBT issues, but I don’t think that I deal with any sensitivities.

    Or maybe I’m just not understanding you fully.

  2. says

    The cost of housing is a whole other issue, but assholes like these are frankly part of the problem on that score. There’s no goddamned excuse for a roof over your head to cost so fucking much, not in Chicago, not here, and not anywhere else in the country either.

  3. cicely says


    cicely, beware! O.O



    There’s no goddamned excuse for a roof over your head to cost so fucking much, not in Chicago, not here, and not anywhere else in the country either.

    Sure there is!
    Status. Trophies.
    How are other people to know that you are winning, and they are losing, without some obtrusively-large, physically-imposing Monument To $u¢¢e$$?

  4. Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate) says

    Hi Loungers –

    I’m shamefully rupt. And I’m about to be shamefully self-centered. I need advice. My new assistant, L, is doing a great job. She’s prompt and helpful and diligent and punctual. One of the things that hampers our time efficiency is her tendency to need to apologize to me several times for the smallest mistake. I know that’s the fault of how women are conditioned in our culture — I don’t fault L for it in the least. It’s just sort of wearing on me and my need to just move on to the next thing we have to do. Especially given the state of both our workloads right now.

    My question is: how can I best put her at ease, and communicate that she does not need to apologize over and over, without making her feel worse about apologizing? I’m currently just trying to be straightforward, kind, and concise with redirection or correction. I have a tendency to over-apologize, sometimes, so I’m trying to think of what would make me feel better/more comfortable in her shoes. Does anyone with more management experience and/or people skills have any suggestions about trying to resolve this? Is it something I should even worry about, or just wait for her to get more comfortable as time goes on?


    *hugs* over here if anyone would like one

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

    Hard to know, Portia. It certainly does depend on her personality. Does she **know** (or at least believe) that she apologizes too frequently as part of socialization?

    Then the answer may be as simple as having a frank conversation and then writing up a post-it for her space that she can look at that says something like, “It doesn’t matter that you made a mistake. I trust you to fix it when you can, and get it fixed by someone else when you can’t.”

    Of course, it could be that despite her conversations with you, that she still really believes that she’s bad at her job or something that makes her think she **should** be apologizing that frequently.

    Venturing into that territory is more tricky. You’re not her psychologist, and despite your positive intentions, you’re not entitled to know what’s going on in her head…and your supervisory position makes it possible that even gentle in inquiries with privacy disclaimers will be perceived as coercive. (Think about whether persons reasonably feel free to leave the presence of a police officer and how tricky that question gets!)

    I’ll be happy to help more if possible this evening, but I need to go get some stuff done. If I’m still commenting in 5 min, I’m probably inappropriately procrastinating, so someone slap me.

  6. cicely says

    Tony!, I see that it clearly warns of INVISIBLE HORSE.
    I take the warning seriously, and deploy the *napalm!* regardless of any “” disclaimer.
    The existence of an invisible Horse is a powerful motivator!

    *pouncehug* for Portia.
    Unfortunately, I have nothing useful to contribute.

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

    Oh, let me just say:

    If she’s not fully aware that she’s over apologizing, a message similar to the note can be helpful. When I was a volunteer coordinator I used to ask questions when people apologized for making a mistake:

    “Can you fix it?”

    then when they say, “I can fix it” I would follow up with:

    “Then i trust you to do that. No need to talk to me about it.”

    The key here is you trick them into calling themselves competent, instead of trying to inject the message from outside.

  8. says

    What I always said to my kids, Smokey, is ‘Making mistakes doesn’t define you. We all do that. What matters is what you do next.’

    My own apology algorithm I laid out once at Miri’s Brute Reason: FOFISSAMO. Find Out; Fix It; Say Sorry; Move On (no link cause I’m on my phone, but should be findable).

    The last part is important; apologising repeatedly is basically for the sake of the apologiser. It’s a need for reassurance that the mistake-maker is not a bad person, or incompetent, or whatever, and requiring the person who was ‘wronged’ to do that work. I’ve had some success with overapologisers in pointing that out – that the extra apologies are actually making the thing more difficult for both parties to move on. The last thing they want to consciously do is make it worse.


  9. says

    Part of me thinks maybe having a conversation with her about it could help. Along the lines of “Hey L, I’ve been wondering something, and I’d like to talk to you about it. It’s nothing bad, in fact, I think you’re doing a great job, but there’s something I’m curious about. I’ve noticed you apologize a lot and I wondered why that is. I don’t want to pressure you into providing an answer, but I have to admit I’m curious.”

    Unrelated: great to see you!

  10. says


    Sure there is!
    Status. Trophies.
    How are other people to know that you are winning, and they are losing, without some obtrusively-large, physically-imposing Monument To $u¢¢e$$?

    That’s not really the problem. The occasional, or even not so occasional, megamansion is obnoxious but not actually the principal problem. The problem is that in many places a 30 year old 2 bedroom in moderate repair is going for near half a million. The cost of housing has increased by a factor of 10-20 since the mid-nineties almost everywhere the country. That is to say that a house that would have cost you $45,000 then will go for $450,000 and up today. Meanwhile, the overall size of the economy (the cause of inflation in a functioning system) has increased by a factor of maybe 2-3 in the same time (and that’s using some pretty crap measures of the size of the economy, but that’s another story), and average incomes haven’t increased at all in real terms. The source of the problem is the housing bubble; Flip that House, mortgage-backed securities, the whole nine yards, until we have millions of units of housing empty and rotting (tens of thousands just in the city where I live) while the number of people sleeping on the streets just keeps going up, all because of asshole speculators who refuse to believe that the bubble burst and no-one can pay them for the profit the believe they’re entitled to anymore, and can’t get credit either. Frankly, any house that’s been empty for more than about 4 months, and any apartment/condo complex that’s at less than 50% occupancy for the same time frame ought to be seized by eminent domain, brought up to proper code if necessary, and then issued to the poor at no cost, starting with the homeless, then moving to anyone whose current residence is below code (which will heavily include minorities) until you run out of housing units. Then seize anyplace that the landlords haven’t brought up to code in the meantime on the same conditions.

  11. says


    It makes me think of a documentary I saw in a class some year ago called The Color of Fear ( I highly recommend watching it if anyone has the opportunity). The director gathered eight (American) men, two African American, two Latinos, two Asian American and two Caucasian, for a weekend retreat where they discussed race and ethnicity. A scene that sticks powerfully in my mind was when one of the white guys, who had been pulling a lot of the ‘not racist but’ type stuff that’s common from liberal and moderate whites, downplaying the problems of racism and whining about affirmative action discriminating against whites and the like. Towards the end, after he’d made a remark about his daughter not getting into her college of choice due (he said) to affirmative action, one of the black men asked him (paraphrasing because I don’t recall his exact words): “And now what if I said to you, ‘That’s all in your head. It’s just your perception of things, but it’s not real; I know, because I know your experience better than you do.’ What if I said that, how do you feel about it?” The white guy looked for a second like he’d been slapped, and then the light visibly dawned on him and he burst into tears and started sobbing out apologies for how he’d been acting the whole time, and indeed pretty much his whole life. A very powerful moment.

  12. Esteleth is Groot says

    Can I once again brag about the Horde?

    On Monday, JAL posted an appeal.

    Seven hours later, $500 had been donated via PayPal, with more being pledged in the “there’s a check in the mail” variety.

    Seriously?! We rock.

  13. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Portia, re your assistant, ask her to just acknowledge the mistake (which is where learning starts), but she doesn’t apologize for minor lack of experience errors since you need to progress on to other things.

  14. says


    Thanks for your reply.
    I’m not sure if I communicated the whole thing:
    She was perfectly able to control her bladder when awake. She no longer does. She’s always wet, but not a full pee. Just a little. Maybe a shot glass full, but enough to be visible.
    At night she goes for the full monty.
    It could totally be that she’s trying to assert control.
    I don’t understand her. OTOH she constantly promises that tomorrow everything will be fine, but she also actively works against any solution.
    Just tonight she got ready for bed, we put the sensor into her undies, she went to bed and played a little on the tablet. When I came to get the tablet, she was wet. The sensor was lying next to her.
    “It’s not my fault, I didn’t notice that I need to pee!”
    “But why aren’t you wearing the sensor, it’s there so you notice!”
    “Because I didn’t want to notice it.”
    Like, WTF?
    I told her I will get her diapers again if she keeps removing the sensor and she should damn well know that this is not a threat but a promise and still she chooses to ignore everything.


    Just wanted to let you know that I’m doing the reading and thinking part of your workshop, but I just can’t be arsed to do the writing part.

  15. says

    The Color of Fear sounds interesting. I checked Netflix, and sadly they don’t have it available :(


    3 year old boy gets prosthetic Iron Man hand:

    The Maui boy, called “Bubba” by his family, was born with amniotic band syndrome, which left him without a right hand. Although he did fine with just one hand, his grandmother Rulan Waikiki told Hawaii’s KHON that when Rayden noticed his little sister had two, he wanted another like hers.

    A prosthetic hand can cost as much as $40,000, and a growing boy like Rayden would have to be refitted regularly. However, several months ago, Waikiki made a discovery online: Thanks to 3D-printing technology, a mechanical hand could be constructed for just $50. And with help from e-NABLE — “A network of passionate volunteers using 3D printing to give the world a ‘Helping Hand’” — Rayden’s Iron Man hand didn’t cost his family a penny.

    There’s also a prosthetic Wolverine hand:

    Here’s a terrific follow-up of sorts to the heartwarming story of Rayden Kahae, the 3-year-old boy who received a prosthetic “Iron Man” hand thanks to 3D-printing technology and the efforts of e-NABLE: There’s also a Wolverine hand — with claws, naturally.

    The organization describes itself as “a network of passionate volunteers using 3D printing to give the world a ‘Helping Hand,’” and one of those is Aaron Brown, who wanted to build a hand to take to a local children’s hospital and to the MakerFaire in Grand Rapids, Michigan. As he wanted to use bright colors, and the University of Michigan’s mascot is the Wolverine, there was only one imaginable option for the comics fan.

    “The comic-loving nerd inside of me (along with some Facebook friends) said there is no way I can make a Wolverine hand without CLAWS,” Brown told e-NABLE. “So I modeled some in Sketchup the morning before the MakerFaire, printed ‘em, spray-painted ‘em silver and velcro’d ‘em on there. Turned out pretty darn cool!”

    The response from the children was, predictably, overwhelmingly positive. “People’s faces just LIT UP!” Brown said. “The kids went crazy over it.”

    He assures there’s no need to worry about anyone getting injured: The claws aren’t made of adamantium; they’re rounded plastic — and removable.

    Sometimes the world seems really shitty, but other times, I’m reminded that there’s a lot of love and joy and some awesome STUFF in this world of ours.

  16. says

    Incidentally, the reason I asked that of Esteleth if anyone is curious:
    ?? I was raised in conservative Protestant and the version we recited about every 5 minutes ended for thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory forever and ever amen. I remember attending a Mass once (this is a funny story – it’s how I got kicked out of Girl Scouts) and being baffled that the prayer was different.

  17. JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness says

    Esteleth, yes ya’ll certainly do.

    Portia, I’m one who does constantly apologize and have had people, including bosses bring it up. Just please don’t do the “Stop apologizing!” line, with or without wide grin, chuckle or adding “already” to it. IMO it’s highly embarrassing (especially since my first response is saying sorry) and doesn’t stop it from happening. It just makes it very noticeable and awkward when it does, which lead me to being more reserved, insecure and quiet. Of course, I say it all the time due to no self-esteem and my fucked up childhood so this might not apply to your assistant at all.

    Unfortunately, I have no idea how to do it correctly since no one’s tried with me beyond the above and even Roomie’s gentle, reasonable requests to stop apologizing to him have just made me feel worse. It’s probably not going away without therapy and treating the underlying issues in my case. =/ At my longest employer I eventually felt comfortable and confident but still apologized a lot whenever I screwed up. The string of short term call center jobs afterwards just aggravated the habit. Uh, (deleted sorry) good luck.

    In other news, I’ve now got an amazing new book to read, thanks to Pteryxx. Time to hurry up with other bothersome things (omg, the neverending dishes) so I can dive in.

  18. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Portia, following JAL #25, (and querying JAL), would one apology at the end of the meeting be more appropriate if one must be made? Rather than for every incident? Considering the move the meeting along factor?

  19. JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness says

    Oh! I forgot. Since the steampunk genre come up here, it keeps popping up. For instance, I recieve an email subscribtion about e-book freebies and deals. Today it had Third Daughter by Susan Kaye Quinn, which is described as “when steampunk meets Bollywood”. It’s free so I got it and plan on trying it out later. I haven’t read anything by this author before, but I’ve heard great things about her Mindjack series, which I also have copies won from a giveaway that I need to read.

  20. says

    Good news for the environment for once:

    In some rare good news for the environment, the UN on Wednesday said Earth’s damaged ozone layer was “well on track” for recovery by mid-century, although fixing it over Antarctica would take longer.

    In their first review in four years on Earth’s vital shield, UN agencies said a 1987 treaty to protect the ozone layer was so successful it was indirectly adding to problems in another area — global warming.

    Without the landmark Montreal Protocol, two million extra cases of skin cancer would have occurred each year by 2030 and levels of ozone-damaging compounds could have increased tenfold by 2050, the report said.

    The pact had also averted ultra-violet damage to human eyesight and to plants and animals, it said.

    “The Earth’s protective ozone layer is well on track to recovery in the next few decades,” the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) said.

    It may not have been the friendliest place for furry little creatures, but three newly identified squirrel-like mammals thrived in the trees of the Jurassic Period, with dinosaurs walking below and flying reptiles soaring above.

    Scientists announced on Wednesday the discovery in China of fossils belonging to three critters in a find that sheds light on a poorly understood collection of ancient mammals, and indicates that mammals as a group appeared earlier than some experts thought.

    The three species come from a group called haramiyids that previously had been known only from isolated teeth and fragmented jaws. Scientists had not even been sure they were mammals at all.

    The nicely preserved fossils from Liaoning Province in northeastern China proved definitively they were mammals, in part because of the presence of three bones of the middle ear characteristic of all mammals from shrews to whales to people.

    The three species – whose scientific names are Shenshou lui, Xianshou linglong and Xianshou songae – date from about 160 million years ago, a time when dinosaurs ruled the land. But a number of recent fossil discoveries have shown that mammals were far more diverse during that period than previously recognized.

  21. JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness says


    Portia, following JAL #25, (and querying JAL), would one apology at the end of the meeting be more appropriate if one must be made? Rather than for every incident? Considering the move the meeting along factor?

    Mine’s automatic so whenever I screw up, come up short or whatever, it just pops out. Whether in a group setting and I’m not being addressed directly or in a one on one meeting. Believe me, I don’t want to out myself as the moron who fucked up in front of everyone but it happens. I’ve never been asked to wait and apologize later so I dunno if that’ll work. But my habit might be a different beast than her assistant’s.

    Now that I think about it, my best employer moved past the fuck ups quickly, shut me down when I started with my sorrys and focused more on what to do next time and other tasks. Funny how I didn’t notice that before or thought it rude with her snappy “Now…” with a hand waving motion dismissing my sorrys. I guess it’s because I know my habit is annoying (I’ve been told often enough, which is understandable but not really helpful) and knew she didn’t mean anything by it since we were still friendly. I thought that’s just how she rolled but she never did it to anyone else.

    Hmmm. I also say it when I don’t screw up like when people bump into me or feel awkward, like that’s my fall back response and when I bump into inanimate objects.Huh. I learn things about myself all the time here.

  22. says

    Sometimes I forget that I live in the United Fucking Theocratic States of America:

    A Pennsylvania teen was charged on Tuesday with desecrating a sacred object after he posted photos of himself simulating oral sex with a statue of Jesus Christ.

    A police report obtained by The Smoking Gun said that the teen, who Pennsylvania State Police did not wish to identify, had “posted pictures of himself on Facebook desecrating a statue of Jesus” at Love In the Name of Christ in Everett.

    The photo shows the head of a kneeling Jesus in the crotch of the teen. The teen did not appear to be violating indecency laws because he was wearing pants, but no shirt.

    Instead, state police charged him under what The Associated Press reported is “a rarely used 1972 law that makes it a crime to desecrate a venerated object.”

    A spokesperson for the ministry told Raw Story that Love In the Name of Christ did not ask police to press charges against the teen.

    “And repercussions that have come from this have been because of what he has posted on Facebook,” the spokesperson said. “We have asked for prayer for this young man. And Love Inc. did not press charges against him. So, what is happening is from the police. It is not from the ministry.”

  23. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Just talked to the Redhead. They finally got her on her feet. Even if just for a little bit, it is a start.
    *does a happy dance, reminiscent of my gravitar*

  24. Esteleth is Groot says

    The story of how I got kicked out of Girls Scouts:

    I was a Brownie scout (for those of you not up on your GS lingo, a Brownie scout is a girl between the age of 7 and 9), and I enjoyed tromping through the woods, making handcrafts, and gorging myself on cookies. Like most troops, mine was sponsored (which, as near as I can tell, means effectively nothing but is a bragging-rights thing) by a local “adult” group – in this case, a local church (this is very common). The church, in obedience to the GCUSA rules, did not attempt to meddle in the affairs of the troop, but held an annual Mass (they were Catholic) in which girls who were interested were welcome to attend and be prayed for and blessed. This was very heavily emphasized to be optional. When that time came, I decided to attend.

    I was, as previously mentioned, raised Protestant. Presbyterian, to be precise. Presbyterian of the “the stained glass is abstract geometric shapes” variety. Rather austere and plain. I suddenly, at a rather tender age, found myself in the sanctuary of an Irish Catholic church that the parish had obviously taken great pains to make beautiful. Gold and art abounded, as did lace on the vestments, fringe on this and that, and beautiful and ornate everything. This was interesting to me, as I’d never seen anything like that.

    Who those boys in dresses were, and what they were doing, I did not know.
    Who those ladies who were wearing rather strange headgear were I did not know.
    Why that guy was walking around swinging a thingie that emitted funny-smelling smoke I did not know.
    Oh, and I’d never seen a crucifix before.
    Like, ever. I was pretty sure it was Jesus (I’d seen pictures), but I didn’t understand what precisely he was doing in the middle of the sanctuary I couldn’t understand. I also was somewhat disturbed by the, ah, detail that the artist put into it.
    I didn’t get what the bowing and kneeling and all that was, or what half the prayers were about, or anything.

    I did, however, think it was pretty cool.

    Anyway, afterwards I went home. My mother (who was still rather fundie-evangelical) asked me how it was, and answered all my questions. All my questions, including ones that a girl my age probably shouldn’t have been told about.

    A few days later, I danced into my troop meeting and greeted my troop leader with, “Mrs. [Name], my mommy says you’re a dirty Papist and that you’re going to hell!”

    My troop leader called my mother. Words were had.

    And long story short, that was the end of my Girl Scout experience.

  25. Morgan!? Militant Pacifist says

    How I got kicked out of the Girl Scouts:

    Actually, it was Brownies. The troop evidently did not have enough volunteer leaders. Therefore, it was decreed that the children of any Mother who could not volunteer several hours a week would not be allowed membership. So if your mother worked, or did not drive a car, or whatever, you were gone. I was gone.

  26. Brony says

    I want to blog about Tourette’s, and my experience of it. But it’s all about sensitive emotions. Literally. I need to make it me in every sense that I can, but this stuff touches on very sensitive parts of human nature. It’s a fact that the most risky metaphors are actually helping me to better understand things.

    I can’t remember any specifics well enough to find the right words for the topic, but I seen people within social activist groups deal with big disagreements over how to do that activism (like “deep rifts” but specific to LBGT or another group). One person feels that another represented the group wrongly, except with more to do with innate characteristics issues and less with behavior that can be changed as a group.

    I am preparing a post on a TS forum, but I did not want to “reinvent the wheel” when other people have already been there in many ways and might have insights I might not encounter.

  27. says

    chigau @37:
    When I read that story I wondered that too. I can’t see the possible relevance.
    In fact, it stood out quite a bit to me. So much so that when I read about Stevie Wonder’s response to the mayor of Ferguson, I noted that there was-properly-no mention of him being blind.

  28. Brony says

    @ Giliell

    It could totally be that she’s trying to assert control.

    You could be right. Children do go through stages where they test authority, more than one stage. Since you mentioned possible non-neurotypical issues I thought I might be able to see if anything I knew might resonate with things you have heard other parents talk about. But if nothing comes to mind I’m not sure I can do much more.

    Most of the realities of parenting are things that I can’t speak with much knowledge about. I wish I could help with that, but my brain wants to go to something like Piaget’s stages of development and I think that I might mess something like that up. But I hope that you find someone with the right parenting experience and knowledge.

  29. says

    Brony @40:

    I am preparing a post on a TS forum, but I did not want to “reinvent the wheel” when other people have already been there in many ways and might have insights I might not encounter.

    I think you should go for it. You’re a very thoughtful and considerate person, so I imagine any post you write up will have considerable thought go into it in an effort not to step on toes or offend anyone. That may still happen, but I imagine if it did, you’d take any criticism to heart. Don’t forget that while others have insights you’re not aware of, the same applies to you. Writing the post about yourself and your experience with Tourette’s sounds like a good way to minimize any potential problems.

  30. says

    I’m not certain why they repeated that she was pregnant. I assume that the reason the pregnancy was mentioned in the first place is to clarify why someone picked a fight with her over the fact that she was drinking, as many people consider themselves particularly entitled to police the behavior of pregnant women.

  31. says

    Dalillama @44:
    The article is slightly confusing, but I don’t believe she was drinking with them. I think she was working.

    The affidavit said Serban, 40, and Reiger, 46, were drinking cinnamon whiskey shots with a pregnant bartender along with beer at Mikie’s Pub on Indianapolis’ south side when Serban became annoyed at patron Bradford Bohanon, who was getting loud, cursing and getting belligerent with the bartender, the probable cause affidavit said.

    A videotape of the incident showed the bartender and Bohanon having a disagreement — she had asked Bohanon to leave — when Serban went behind the bar and placed his badge in front of Bohanon’s face, according to the affidavit. However, Bohanon, believing the badge was fake, threw it to the ground before the melee broke out, the affidavit said.

    The ‘coming behind the bar’ indicates to me that the off duty officers were sitting at her bar while she was working.

  32. thunk: metallocene says


    I have been stupendously good at emotional resilience over the past month, when a whole bunch of things decided to go wrong and screw me over at once, But I think I reached my breaking point today, when my laptop gave up after dropping it. (why am I so clumsy?)

    I now feel like going to bed, but not really, and just go home and cry all day–or just stare blankly at walls.

  33. toska says

    I’m sorry things have been generally rough for you. I hope they improve soon.
    You probably want to rest right now and get your mind off of your laptop, but as a tech support person, I’d like to offer a bit of advice. Often when I work on dropped laptops, the problem has to do with the hard drive. Sometimes the hard drive has simply been disconnected in the jolt, so the computer can’t see it (probably your best case scenario). Or sometimes it’s become damaged and unreadable. But a brand new hard drive is cheaper than a brand new computer, so hopefully that is the case. If you’d like any help with trouble shooting or repairs, let me know, and I can give you my email.
    Good luck with everything.

  34. JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness says

    So while eating something before I start reading tonight and web surfing, I found out Tim McGraw’s new CD is titled “Sundown Heaven Town”.

    Now, is it just me or does that sound really, really fucked up? I looked into and he’s said this about it:

    To me, the title of the album is all about that time where you stop doing what you have to do, and start doing what you want to do.

    I am seriously not understanding. Looking at the released tracklist, I’m not seeing a connection there either. There’s even a Countdown to Sundown website. That’s all I could find since it’s on pre-order but it all makes me feel worse about it. Just, ewww.

  35. says

    I found your comments on my blog. They were trapped in the spam queue. I just approved 3 of them. I guess those were ones you tried to send from work. I’m still learning various technical details of blogging. I should get the hang of it sometime before I turn 40 next year.

  36. rq says

    Interesting, since at work they don’t even show up as being in moderation or something. :) Some of them are doubles, though – feel free to delete those that repeat information.

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

    No. I’m so not staying in a hostel dorm during my work payed trip. Wtf?
    I only realized we were talking about a dorm when I was asked whether I mind a mixed room.

  38. says

    This is fantastic!

    In German: When in doubt, use pictures of naked women. A journalist was looking for coverpages on which there were naked women when the topic was not remotely naked women.
    My favourite one is dental care and dentists. Somehow, the sentence “please take off your clothes” was never mentioned in all the years I went there…

  39. rq says

    Ah, but the phrase “Open wide”…

    What, really? Hostel dorms? … They should be able to manage nice double rooms without the fancy, no? :/ Hope it gets sorted out properly!

  40. Rowan vet-tech says

    Dear Horde:

    Much random thinking today, and enjoying the reading of the blog when the post with that awesome “Dear White People” blog reminded me that without this website, I would have been even more clueless about racism than I probably still am. I was reminded of an incident, many seasons ago (about 10, actually), where I was pondering proper rebuttals to the idea of slavery in the bible being something completely different and benign as compared to American slavery. And I thought this thought: “But most people in this country back then were okay with slavery, too.” I paused for about 10 seconds and then said aloud to myself “Holy shit, that was such a fucking racist statement.”

    I credit this blog with allowing me to realise that I’ll never be entirely racism-free in my words, thoughts, or deeds simply because of the culture I’ve been raised in… but I can be less blatantly so, apologise when I catch myself doing it, and humbly accept correction when I don’t catch myself.

    Thank you Horde, and thank you P.Z.

    This concludes your maudlin/sappy 2-a.m.-and-I’m-still-feeding-snakes-help comment from the RVT.

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

    Found another hostel with double rooms. An old student campus and it shows, but as long as I have privacy I’ll be ok for a week.

    My next trip is going to bw to the most expensive city here (Dubrovnik) so I’m not looking forward to the travel&accomodation conversation

  42. birgerjohansson says

    Oh, no. Richard Kiel is dead, just 74 years old.
    If you are as old as me, you may recll him playing the tall indian playing against Jack Nicholson in The Cuckoo’s Nest.
    Mostly, he got to play villains, like “Jaws”.

  43. says

    thunk, sorry about your laptop, I hope the damage is minor and quickly fixable. I’ve got hugs if you need them.

    JAL, that’s not a good title for an album. I suspect (hope) the man is just clueless, but still, you’d think somebody, somewhere would’ve pointed out the unfortunate implications before the thing got this far. Yeesh.

    More tea. Need more tea. Catch you all later.

  44. Rob Grigjanis says

    birgerjohansson @61:

    the tall indian playing against Jack Nicholson in The Cuckoo’s Nest.

    That was Will Sampson.

  45. thunk: metallocene says

    Thanks everyone. It’s okay. Everything’s still quite cool here.

    As for the laptop– it’s not really fixable, the screen is cracked. And I was expecting some breakage to happen anyway, so as to use a moderate sum of money given for this express purpose… Which, as I have not used it in a month, may just end up being attached to an external screen and used that way.

  46. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    Thunk: depending on the brand, it may well be possible to buy a screen secondhand and replace it yourself.

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

    Hmm, I really have to work on this standing up for myself thing.

  48. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    Mmph. Aside from various levels of disappointing and alarming personal-and-professional-life developments, I’m having what is very clearly a skeletal muscle cramp, but nevertheless in the general vicinity of the middle of my chest. As a big fat guy, this is kind of unnerving. :(

  49. blf says

    Mostly, he [Richard Kiel] got to play villains, like “Jaws”.

    That’s the steel-toothed James Bond villain, not the roboshark.

  50. The Mellow Monkey says

    A Call for Black Male Feminists

    Black women have called on Black men to aid in the dismantling of the systems that oppress us for decades. We have pleaded. We have cajoled,. We have berated. Yet the intended recipients either ignore or dismiss our voices without thought. And at this time, it is clear that although Black women can light the way and clear the path, this centuries long battle will not be won without the aid of the Black men with whom we live in community. This is not a concession to patriarchy but a recognition of the depths of its grasp.

  51. says

    Ah, I see that über conservatives in the USA’s House of Representatives have yet another reason to threaten to shut down the government (a Continuing Resolution funding the government runs out on September 30th).

    The conservative activists who played a key role in sparking the government shutdown last fall are waging a similar battle this year, pushing House Republicans to threaten a standoff over a credit agency that a large majority of Americans haven’t heard of or don’t care about.

    The Club For Growth and Heritage Action each issued a “key vote” on Wednesday calling on lawmakers to vote against the House GOP’s continuing resolution to keep the government open past Sept. 30. They took issue with the fact that the bill reauthorizes the Export-Import Bank through the end of June 2015 — the activists want to shut it down.

    In other words, they’re pushing House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) to threaten a government shutdown — just one month before the midterm election — unless Democrats agree to close down Ex-Im.

    Background info on the Ex-Im bank:

    […] The entity, also called the Ex-Im Bank, has been around for 80 years, extending loans to foreign entities so they can more easily buy American products.

    Congressional support for the Bank has always been one-sided – critics have never come close to defeating it and votes have been lopsided, when they’ve been held at all (the Bank has routinely been reauthoritized by unanimous consent) – but things are different this year. […]

  52. says

    The humanitarian crisis on the Mexico/USA border is easing.

    The Department of Homeland Security released new figures on the number of apprehensions along the Southwest border Monday and the numbers continue to plummet, for both unaccompanied children and adults with children. “In July the numbers of unaccompanied children were about half of what they were in June,” DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson said in a statement. “August was even lower – lower than August 2013 and the lowest since February 2013.”

  53. Brony says

    Thank you for the compliment. I’ll try to make the results of anything worthy of it.

    We are clumsy because we are distracted. Often by important things, or a collection of things that feel important anyway.

    If it helps, standing down for yourself in the right situations is also hard. This stuff is complicated in ways that are simultaneously kind of interesting.

    Are you worried about it being referred pain from something else?

  54. says

    Azkyroth @70:

    Mmph. Aside from various levels of disappointing and alarming personal-and-professional-life developments, I’m having what is very clearly a skeletal muscle cramp, but nevertheless in the general vicinity of the middle of my chest. As a big fat guy, this is kind of unnerving. :(

    Fuck. I’m sorry to hear that.
    I dearly hope it’s nothing serious.

  55. The Mellow Monkey says

    As A Father Of Daughters, I Think We Should Treat All Women Like My Daughters

    Listen, as a father of daughters, I’m really against this kind of behavior, this kind of treatment of women. The kind where they get hurt or they can’t vote or we don’t give any money to them. You know the kind I’m talking about. The kind I don’t want my daughters to experience, and then I just sort of extrapolate out from there.

    It didn’t always used to be this way. I used to only have sons. Things sure were different then. How merrily I used to drive down country lanes in my old Ford, periodically dodging off-road to mow down female pedestrians (you must remember I had no daughters then). Was what I did wrong? How was I to know? I had no daughters to think of.

  56. says

    When all else fails, just try to run out the clock. That’s what Republicans in the Senate are trying to do.

    […]As Burgess Everett explained, “Senate Republicans have a new strategy: Vote to advance bills they oppose.”

    The GOP broadly opposes both of these proposals [Paycheck Fairness Act and a constitutional amendment to campaign finance laws] – but they are voting to extend debate on them to chew up the remaining few days on the legislative calendar and prevent Democrats from holding even more campaign-themed votes on raising the minimum wage, reforming the student loan system and striking back at the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby decision. [emphasis mine — outrage mine]

    […] everyone in Congress is eying the exits for general election season, the GOP figures if it strings out debate on proposals that it opposes, the damage will be limited. […]

    When Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.), for example, asked why his party is suddenly voting for the same measures Republicans have killed in the recent past, he conceded, ”The timing has a lot to do with it.” […]

    Maddow Blog link.

    Republicans are voting to allow debate, as opposed to mounting filibusters that prevent debate and prevent the bills from coming up for a vote. Allow debate to eat up what little time is on the Congressional Calendar for actual work.

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


    It took me a moment to understand what you meant. Yes, both are hard, and worse – they feed into each other.

  58. says

    Tony @79:

    Lynna @77:
    I initially thought “that’s a good thing”. Then I thought about it and realized that it could mean more people are dying before they can make it to the border :(

    In terms of very callous political calculations, it is a good thing for Democratic Party candidates because it lets some of the air out of the bombastic conspiracy balloon — the one which claims Obama is importing disease-ridden kids in order to cause a crisis that will require him to declare martial law, a move which will allow him to stay in office past 2016. I know, incredibly stupid, but still a potent theory on the far right. It motivates right-wingers to vote.

    it’s very hard to say with confidence exactly what’s caused the recent trend. Vinik noted that the Obama administration’s ad campaign in Central America may have helped get the word out, and Mexico stepping up enforcement likely contributed to the progress.

    As for the theory that more children are dying along the way, I think the percentage has remained almost constant.

  59. Brony says

    @ Beatrice
    It might be complicated, but perhaps we can help one another with that if we ever see an opportunity. Helping my opposite (if I learn to do it right) is probably a good way to make sure I’m getting the perspective right on my own excess. But I suppose there might be risks in that too.

  60. says

    Lynna @84:

    it’s very hard to say with confidence exactly what’s caused the recent trend. Vinik noted that the Obama administration’s ad campaign in Central America may have helped get the word out, and Mexico stepping up enforcement likely contributed to the progress.

    Ick. If they’re going with the “Mexico is enforcing the border more and that’s probably contributed to a reduction in immigrants coming into the US”, all that means is that the people fleeing the horrific violence and sexual assault going on in Central America are probably still dealing with it. They just aren’t making it to the US border. The problem still exists. We (i.e. the US) just don’t have to deal with it.
    Is the puke bucket around?

  61. says

    Fewer undocumented children showing up on the southern border also deflates some of Ted Cruz’s bombast about deporting Dream Act kids.

    President Obama tried to point out in his Labor Day speech that progress had been made on dealing with the humanitarian crisis on our border, but that we still need money and practical solutions to address undocumented children crossing the border. Instead, Fox News wailed away for hours about the color of his suit.

    Republicans are continually in search of an election-winning issue, only to find their hopes dashed on the shores of facts. Reality and the Republican Party have an adversarial relationship.

  62. says

    Lynna @87:

    President Obama tried to point out in his Labor Day speech that progress had been made on dealing with the humanitarian crisis on our border, but that we still need money and practical solutions to address undocumented children crossing the border. Instead, Fox News wailed away for hours about the color of his suit.

    Oh, yes, bc the problem is undocumented children coming to our borders rather than the shit that’s causing them to leave their countries in the first place. Let’s not address that Mr. President.

  63. says

    Tony @85:

    [….] all that means is that the people fleeing the horrific violence and sexual assault going on in Central America are probably still dealing with it. […]

    Right. And that is stomach-churning. One Republican politician even said in a TV interview that we should deport the children even if it does mean they may be killed or sexually assaulted in their home countries. The lack of empathy is astounding.

    […] When ThinkProgress asked Pittenger if these deportations should continue in the light of reports that some of the children have been killed upon return, he said they should.

    “It’s the most egregious, awful crime and a pity, what has happened to these young children,” he told ThinkProgress. “But do you want to open up America’s doors to the entire world? We can’t handle the healthcare and education today for our own population! We have to be sensible about what we our system can manage. So you put them on planes and you send them back.” […]

  64. chigau (違う) says

    “But do you want to open up America’s doors to the entire world?”
    “Give me your tired, your poor,
    Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,”
    New York will be under water soon, might as well melt that statue down and recycle it now.

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

    Just so story debunked.

    Interesting reading. What’s particularly interesting is that I think I believed half of the correct picture accidentally.

    Not trained in geology, I had interpreted certain descriptions in a way apparently inconsistent with the dominant picture of then-current geological science. I still did believe the bit about thermal expansion driving the upwelling of heat from the lower mantle – which is no pretty close to being confirmed as incorrect. But the idea of narrow jets coming from deep below the continental crust, that I hadn’t believed. I had always believed (correctly, but only on accident because I had misunderstood my sources) that heat and pressure from below was widely dispersed under continental crust, but that it comes up in particular places b/c of weakness or cracks or deformations in the continental crust, not because a narrow bit of hot rock blow-torched its way through the crust in small areas.

    Anyway, if you’re interested in geology, give it a read. I’m still not sure whether, say, Hawaii is the result of the broad “super-plumes” that are known to exist, or whether there’s a shallow pool that’s relatively stable and occasionally finding a split or seem in the oceanic crust. But the continental edge volcanoes appear to be mostly, if not nearly-uniformly, of the shallow pool + weakness type.

  66. cicely says

    Nerd, that is indeed good news!

    *hugs* for thunk, and condolences for the death of your laptop.


    I’m having what is very clearly a skeletal muscle cramp, but nevertheless in the general vicinity of the middle of my chest. As a big fat guy, this is kind of unnerving. :(

    “Unnerving” is a bit of an understatement.
    The first time I had one of those—I guess this would be fifteen-ish years ago—I panicked; the doctor had me hooked up to an EKG to check it out, there were no heart-related problems to be found…but still. You know. Pain. It should be caused by something. And however am I going to be able to recognize if I’m having a heart attack???
    I later determined that there is, for me, a strong correlation between that particular pain, and my having for whatever reason spent too much time with my shoulders (most often, the left shoulder) pulled forward and toward the center. This may or may not be Relevant To Your Interests, but it couldn’t hurt to look for such correlations.

    *handing Tony! the barf bucket*

    Oh, yes, bc the problem is undocumented children coming to our borders rather than the shit that’s causing them to leave their countries in the first place. Let’s not address that Mr. President.

    Or the hand that various U.S. agencies and administrations have had in setting up the environment for the current situation.
    *rapidly looking right and left, and whispering*
    (I hear that there are still terrorists in the Middle East.
    Y’know…brown, Mooooslim people.)

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



    Although in this case, I don’t think there’s much chance of helping me out of the full “I’m so stupid for not saying something before, she must be laughing at me for being so stupid to accept this, no wonder people think they can walk all over me when I let them, I deserve whatever I get for being a fool…..” mode.

    Gad, I hate when I’m stupid and only realize it after things are done. Fuck

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

    The ex-student dorm? Not so much ex. This hostel is actually hostel & student dorm.

    So I guess I have to ask for links to websites for my accommodation being sent to me beforehand for vetting. Because this place apparently doesn’t have minimal standards for where they send their workers.

    Sorry for harping on about this. I’m in the loop. I can’t stop thinking about this. Probably won’t sleep much tonight, am already near in tears.

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

    Tony, thanks. I just feel like they think I’m a fool, and that really upsets me and I can’t help feeling humiliated… even though that’s probably not the case, and there wasn’t really as much deliberation as I give them credit for. Except I can’t be sure, so I mull over it for hours and keep getting at worse and worse conclusions.

  70. Brony says

    @ Beatrice
    It’s not stupid. It’s a familiar set of behavioral routines for both of us. A set of routines that we have discovered is unhealthy for us and other people. Routine is often comfortable. Brains don’t really like to have to change the way they are used to responding so our “demons” will find ways to try to convince us out of it (or into it in my case).

    Being assertive can risky. Being assertive thoughtlessly is dangerous and I doubt that you would be doing that since you are thinking about being more assertive a lot. Our demons will overemphasize either the risks or benefits because that is what the more childlike parts of our minds do when they place the extreme ends of emotional possibilities. My wife is working on similar things with her psychologist.

  71. says

    That sounds very much like what I’ve done before. It almost always happens when I feel like I’ve been mistreated, but I don’t have all the information in place to know for sure that’s what happened. So in my mind I just replay everything I know over and over, unable to take my mind off of things, and each conclusion I reach just confirms my fears. The times when I’ve learned further information almost always results in me realizing that my worst fears were not justified. Doesn’t change how I react when a new situation arises.

  72. says


    (a) You are Not Stupid. Not, Not, NOT. Too nice, maybe, too worried about being a good employee and not rocking the boat, probably, but never ever stupid.

    (b) Hugs if you want ’em. Standing up for yourself is hard, especially for women. Been there, done that, still feel like a horrible person when I do stand up for myself.

    I spent nearly two hours driving around and walking around, but all the errands are done, I dropped off the sample at the vet’s, the groceries all got bought. And I even browsed the local Goodwill on the way home. Tomorrow, if all goes well, I will stay home and try to get restarted on one of my many UFOs while doing the laundry. So there, life.

  73. says

    After eight years, Alan Moore has completed the epic first draft of his long-discussed novel Jerusalem, which clocks in at more than 1 million words.

    “Has finished the first draft of his second novel, Jerusalem,” the writer’s daughter Leah Moore announced Tuesday on Facebook. “Now there’s just the small matter of copy editing a more-than-a-million word document, and its all done.”

    The Verge offers a bit of context for that staggering figure, noting that it’s the equivalent of more than two Lord of the Rings novels, or the first three installments of the Song of Ice and Fire series. The Guardian adds that it’s 200,000 words more than the Bible.

    In the works since at least 2006, Jerusalem explores the history of Moore’s hometown, Northampton, England, using stories from his family’s past, with his own interpretations of events, and fantasy elements that detour into other dimensions, and into other genres.

    When he spoke with the New Statesman in 2011, the writer envisioned a 750,000-word novel. “Any editor worth their salt would tell me to cut two-thirds of this book, but that’s not going to happen,” Moore said. “I doubt that Herman Melville had an editor — if he had, that editor would have told him to get rid of all that boring stuff about whaling: ‘Cut to the chase, Herman.’”

    Moore, who made his prose debut in 1996 with Voice of the Fire, has said he never imagined Jersualem as anything other than a novel — a very big novel.

    “In fact the decision to write Jerusalem came as a very, very strong reaction against comic books,” he told The Believer last year. “When I started Jerusalem — this would have been back in 2006 — I had just had a very violent parting of the ways with DC Comics, stuff to do with the V for Vendetta film, which I think was then current. It felt really good to finally tell the people, ‘I’m not going to be working for you anymore. I’m not going to have any more to do with the comics industry than I can help in the future.’ The decision to take on Jerusalem was very much a movement away from comics, to explore the possibilities of what the novel could do.”

    More words than the bible? Sheesh.
    That said, it will probably be far more engaging and internally consistent.

  74. rq says

    Oh, and

    “Previous interpretations have looked at Spinosaurus as something akin to a 13-metre-long great blue heron with a bad attitude,” says Ken Lacovara of Drexel University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Now it seems it was more like a crocodile.

    I almost prefer it as the 13-metre blue heron with a bad attitude. :D

    (Beatrice, you are so far from stupid, I have to twist my head all the way around to picture you in the same frame. Not comfortable and not working.)

  75. The Mellow Monkey says

    “Any editor worth their salt would tell me to cut two-thirds of this book, but that’s not going to happen,” Moore said. “I doubt that Herman Melville had an editor — if he had, that editor would have told him to get rid of all that boring stuff about whaling: ‘Cut to the chase, Herman.’”

    I rolled my eyes so hard I think they’ve slipped behind the couch.

    I’ve got an editor interested in one of my manuscripts right now–eeeeohmyyespleasemoney–and she made a single, seemingly arbitrary suggestion for revision. I followed her suggestion and as a cascade effect just about every line in the novella took on more weight and depth. A good editor can be downright magical. Publishing needs more skilled editors and an army of proofreaders.

    The fact that there are editors out there who are going to be more focused on getting the right marketable length than the best story is a problem, but it’s sheer hubris to ignore how important a talented editor is. But, no, let’s just construct a strawman version of an editor and proclaim how every one of your ONE MILLION words is necessary and perfect. Surely no one who has dedicated their life to polishing and improving prose could have insight or thoughts on the matter.

  76. cicely says

    *hugs* for Beatrice.
    I’m sorry that you find yourself in such a hostel situation.
    Also…you? Stupid?

  77. Brony says

    @ Anne

    Standing up for yourself is hard, especially for women. Been there, done that, still feel like a horrible person when I do stand up for myself.

    Very good points.

    Standing up for ourselves is a general skill society neglects in woman, is suppressed in many disadvantaged groups, and is included among things like simply being able to generally practice being dominant and aggressive in a general human skill sense. We talk about things like dominance, aggression, and assertiveness like they are bad things, and they very often are because their opposite is the submissive person, the defensive person, and the unconfident person. But they are neutral behaviors in a larger sense and can be medicine for people that can’t use them, or are being prevented from using them.

    Also behavioral routines we have established when we are young often stay with us and change is often about figuring out when and how we need to be different from what we are used to. The felt reaction to entering “dangerous emotional territory” or “familiar emotional territory” is a signal from our past. A reminder, but not one we have to listen to.

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

    I’ll just go to bed. I’ve now spent too much time looking at hotel prices and justifying the secretary because hotel rooms really are expensive.

    I’ll try to believe you mean it about stupidity, and you’re not just saying it to make me feel better.

    Anne, yeah I know what you mean. Feeling you’re horrible to yourself if you don’t stand up for yourself, horrible to others if you do. No win.

  79. rq says

    Well, I am saying it to make you feel better, because it’s true, unlike your lying brain would have you believe. :) Good night!

  80. David Marjanović says

    O hai!

    rq beat me to the good news! At the end of that article, there’s a link to an open-access paper about a new pterosaur with a throat pouch.

    Ooooh, them whales and them thar legs!!!

    The forelimbs are still there… but they haven’t been osteosclerotic in a looooong time. Whale skeletons are osteoporotic: because whales routinely collapse their lungs, they don’t need extra bone to counteract the buoyancy – they’ve reduced the amount of bone so they don’t sink.

    Now, for the bad news: there are “gay cure” “clinics” in China – they’re not only in Kansas anymore. Petition to the WHO to stop that.

    *hugs for Beatrice* You’re awesome. I’m serious.

  81. Brony says

    I just realized that social justice activism is a natural outgrowth of atheist activism if someone cares about the specific behaviors in religion causing problems.
    No wonder all the opposition seems to take the form of people that either just want to oppose social justice activism, or are feeling connected to bad behavior because of group criticism.

  82. says

    This is a followup to my comment #82. We now know the outcome of the Senate vote on Citizens United: Republicans will support the billionaires.

    By a straight party-line vote of 54-42, the U.S. Senate defeated a constitutional amendment today that would have overruled the awful Citizens United decision.

    All five Senate Democrats whose support was unknown ended up voting “yes,” whereas even Republican Susan Collins voted “no.”

    This was one of the last votes the Senate will take before they adjourn for the election season—where the Koch brothers will pour millions of dollars into attack ads to fool voters. […]

    Daily Kos link.

  83. opposablethumbs says

    Some very big ephemeral art:

    I’m not managing to cope just at the moment. All the hugs to Ogvorbis, the (belated) first-day-of-school hugs to rq and ongoing good-health wishes to the Redhead waves and hugs to Carlie and cicely and Portia and Tony! (hope the new job is soon running smoothly!) and everybody (you lot are jointly and severally the best). Maybe not around just now, but looking forward to coming back more in a bit when hopefully things will have settled down somewhat.

  84. says

    To further their never-ending persecution of gays, Cameroon has come up with new and mind boggling means of identifying gays:

    Article 347 bis of the Cameroon Penal Code punishes “sexual relations with a person of the same sex,” with sentences of prison terms as long as five years in addition to fines. According to Michel Togue, a Cameroonian attorney who has defended many people accused of homosexuality, gay and lesbian stereotypes alone are often enough to warrant charges.

    Togue told ThinkProgress that of the dozens of such cases he has represented, very few people were actually caught in the act of actually having sex. Once an accusation of homosexuality is made, police make arrests based solely on how individuals present themselves. For example, if a man is found to be cross-dressing, that could be used as proof that he is gay in court. If somebody has a job that doesn’t fit their gender, like a male hairdresser, that too could be used against them. A judge convicted one of Togue’s clients for feminine mannerisms and for drinking Bailey’s Irish Cream, which he felt only a woman would drink. […]

  85. says

    As if working a minimum wage or low-paying job did not make life difficult enough, some employers make use of scheduling practices that make workers’ lives even more difficult:

    Nearly 40 percent of retail workers report that they don’t get a set minimum of hours that they will work each week, and a quarter are scheduled for on-call shifts, often finding out just two hours in advance that they’ll be needed […]

    The findings come from a survey of more than 200 people working in retail in New York City, mostly at large, national apparel stores. While it’s not a scientifically representative sample, it exposes a snapshot of the conditions many people in the industry work under. Almost all of the workers the group interviewed have to deal with unpredictable schedules and other scheduling practices that wreak havoc on their lives. […]

    One retail employee named Heath (some names in the report were changed) recounted working a shift from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m., only to be told he had to come in the next morning for a 6 a.m. shift, getting less than 24 hours notice and leaving him with just nine hours off between the shifts. […] Many stores also expect employees to be available to come into work at any time, on any day.

    Technology has also played a big role in unreliable schedules. Stores rely on algorithms that tell them that they have too many employees compared to sales volume […] “Employers are able to change shifts at the last minute but if the employee does not know about the updated schedule and comes in late to work, they will get penalized,” the report says. […]

    Slaves. I think what these employers really want are slaves, not employees.

  86. says

    Well, it’s not the tan suit problem, but it is just as bad. Right-wingers are harping on the fact that President Obama did not deliver his ISIS/ISIL speech from the Oval Office.

    Glenn Beck is upset that when President Obama delivered his remarks laying out his plans for confronting ISIS last night, he did not do so from the Oval Office, suggesting that this is all part of Obama’s effort to fundamentally transform the nation by erasing America’s image of what the presidency represents. […]

    Right Wing Watch link.

  87. says

    Ray Comfort thinks his new anti-gay movie is going to be absolutely amazing:

    World-renown [sic] evangelist Ray Comfort is well on his way to releasing Audacity, a groundbreaking film that will graciously address the biblical truths about homosexuality — a hot topic many in the Christian world have skirted around to avoid being stereotyped as “haters,” “bigots” and even “racists.“ Instead of politicizing this controversial issue, Comfort is using his first scripted short film with professional actors to share the Gospel of God’s love […]

    “We wanted something that will hold the attention of an avid skeptic. So I wrote a script and sent it to Mark Spence (the head producer of most of our short movies), and he replied: ‘I cannot believe this is the first version of the script. It is soooooo good. I am so pumped. This is going to be amazing. Wow oh WOW oh WOW oh WOW!’ I think he liked it, and I believe others will also.” […]

  88. says

    I was curious why I hadn’t seen comments by you in a while. I hope everything settles down for you soon.


    Went to our meeting today. We finally got to eat some food. It was quite good. I had a chicken chimichanga with some delicious cheese grits and traditional mexican beans, along with guacamole dip.
    Sadly, they *still* don’t have their liquor license, so that means it won’t be til next week that we open. Thankfully my regular cab driver let me ride for free, bc I have $20 to my name.
    Feeling a little bummed right now, bc this whole being jobless thing just feels neverending.
    But hey, I got to eat for free, so there’s that.

  89. says

    Update on Dinesh D’Souza’s problems:

    The U.S. government wants conservative author and filmmaker Dinesh D’Souza to be sentenced to as much as 16 months in prison, following his guilty plea to a campaign finance law violation.

    […] federal prosecutors rejected defense arguments that D’Souza was “ashamed and contrite” about his crime, had “unequivocally accepted responsibility,” and deserved a sentence of probation with community service.

    D’Souza, 53, admitted in May to illegally reimbursing two “straw donors” who donated $10,000 each to the unsuccessful 2012 U.S. Senate campaign in New York of Wendy Long […]

    It [the government] also said D’Souza waited to “the last possible moment” prior to trial before admitting guilt, and then went on TV shows and the Internet to complain about being “selectively” targeted for prosecution, and having little choice but to plead guilty.

    “Based on the defendant’s own post-plea statements, the court should reject the defendant’s claims of contrition on the eve of sentencing,” prosecutors led by U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara in Manhattan said in the filing. […]

    D’Souza presented statements of support to the court. Those statements included one from Laura Ingraham.

  90. says

    “Just because America has fallen so far that we now treat sin, in this case homosexuality, as a civil right doesn’t mean we have the right to force that on other countries that have more wholesome and biblical values,” LaBarbera tells OneNewsNow.

    Uh, WTF. So now that evangelicals from the USA have exported fucktons of gay hatred and misinformation to African Nations, to Russia, and to other nations, they are very upset that the government of the USA is not cheering their successes and supporting their goals. The US has withdrawn support, some of it economic, from nations that violate human rights by passing draconian anti-gay laws.

  91. The Mellow Monkey says

    opposablethumbs, here’s to things settling down. ♥ Take care.

    Dang, Tony!. This whole thing is really dragging out for you. Tentacles crossed it all goes quickly and smoothly and opens up next week.

    One retail employee named Heath (some names in the report were changed) recounted working a shift from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m., only to be told he had to come in the next morning for a 6 a.m. shift, getting less than 24 hours notice and leaving him with just nine hours off between the shifts. […] Many stores also expect employees to be available to come into work at any time, on any day.

    Been there, done that. Sadly, this isn’t even remotely news to me. I think the worst was the store that closed at ten, but we had to do restocking before we could leave that could keep us there until 11:30 pm, and I’d often be asked (or downright required) to come in to open the next day, which would require I get there at 5:30 am. Oh, but at least they were decent enough to not frequently require a double-shift on top of the opening shift.

    These are not rare situations. At all.

  92. says

    Right-wingers continue to work hard when it comes to promoting a generic and fact-aversive brand of anti-Muslim groups and activities.

    ACT for America, the anti-Muslim group run by Brigitte Gabriel, held a legislative briefing on Capitol Hill today where it was joined by Republican members of Congress including Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann, Texas Rep. Louie Gohmert, South Carolina Rep. Jeff Duncan, Illinois Rep. Peter Roskam, and Arkansas Sen. John Boozman. […]

    […] In addition to pushing meaningless Sharia bans throughout the country, Gabriel has gone after Muslim Student Associations at colleges and school textbooks that she deems too friendly to Islam .

    She has also suggested the President Obama secretly a Muslim who is “not only pro-Islam, he’s pro-jihadist.” […]

  93. says

    Mellow Monkey:
    Yeah, the dragging on is just annoying as hell. What makes it worse is that I can’t blame it on anyone. The owners can’t help it that it’s taking this much time. They want to be open asap as well.

  94. says

    The Texas State Board of Education is just awful, as has been proven many times in the past. Here’s a new detail to cause head-desking in fact-based educators. The new textbooks that the board proposed and that they are reviewing, include “history” from David Barton.

    […] a number of books followed the board’s advice in making vague claims about Moses as a direct influence on the framers of the Constitution — a claim straight out of David Barton’s pseudo-scholarship. […] [emphasis mine]

  95. says

    The Mellow Monkey @122:

    These are not rare situations. At all.

    Exactly, it’s more like an industry standard for retail and fast-food corporation. Gotta squeeze just a few more pennies of profit from the sweat of employees. Not rare, and therefore deserving of a fix.

  96. says

    opposablethumbs, hugs back to you.

    Lynna@117, the wrong room? The right wing are really scraping the bottom of the barrel.

    Tony!, hugs for things dragging on, even if you did get free food.

  97. A. Noyd says

    JAL (#49) [#549]

    Now, is it just me or does that sound really, really fucked up? I looked into and he’s said this about it:

    To me, the title of the album is all about that time where you stop doing what you have to do, and start doing what you want to do.

    I am seriously not understanding.

    [TW: racism] Even before knowing he was a country singer, I interpreted it thus:

    What you have to do: Tolerate black people’s existence.
    What you want to do: Wipe them off the face of the earth.

    The real question is, would a sundown heaven town be one where they’ve successfully lynched all the black people forever and ever or one where they never run out of black people to lynch.


    The Mellow Monkey (#104) [#604]

    “Any editor worth their salt would tell me to cut two-thirds of this book, but that’s not going to happen,” Moore said. “I doubt that Herman Melville had an editor — if he had, that editor would have told him to get rid of all that boring stuff about whaling: ‘Cut to the chase, Herman.’”

    I rolled my eyes so hard I think they’ve slipped behind the couch.

    I’m reminded of the time when I was less discriminating about fantasy books and picked up Raymond Feist’s two volume Magician. In the introduction, Feist patted himself on the back for how, while an editor had originally required him to condense his manuscript into a single volume, he had restored it to its former glory for the current edition. I made it through both volumes, but the entire time I was thinking how it might have been so much more palatable as a single volume. Feist really owed that editor better. Magician was his first book and might have been his last if he’d been allowed to publish it the way he’d wanted from the start.

  98. says

    The CW’s upcoming tv show The Flash gets major props for doing the *opposite* of whitewashing a character. In the comics, Barry Allen (the Flash) has a love interest by the name of Iris West. She’s always been white. In the tv series, she’ll be depicted by a black woman. Candice Patton says that her character will not be a damsel in distress:

    As a crusading blogger, Patton says, Iris will be doing her part to unravel the mysteries behind the rise of dangerous metahuman criminals in Central City — and the actress will be carefully navigating the delicate relationship between Iris and her longtime best friend Barry Allen (Grant Gustin)

    We know the old fashioned type of hero’s girlfriend — tell me how Iris is not the damsel in distress, especially as she’s been evolving in the first several episodes.

    Yeah — what I’m really learning and loving about Iris is she’s super-smart, she’s super-curious and she’s very brave. And those are things that I love in women, and those are things that I strive to be myself, so it’s really fun to play that with Iris. Our writers are striving for that with every episode with her, that she’s not stupid and she’s not naïve — she’s the opposite of all of those things.

    So you get your share of the action? Not just romantic subplots, but you’re front and center in the action storylines as well?

    Yeah, that’s the thing about Iris — she’s super-curious, right? So she’s always on her blog and she’s always connecting with other people in the city to find out who these meta-humans are and who “the streak” is, so she’s constantly willing to put herself in danger. She causes conflict with Barry and her father, but, you know, when a woman wants something… [Laughs]

    This reminds me of the casting of Michael B Jordan (a black man) as the Human Torch in next years reboot of the Fantastic Four. There is nothing inherent to either character that says they need to be white. I’m glad to see this move toward more diversity (maybe one day the Flash himself will be a person of color).

  99. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I can tell fall is coming. Had to bring in the tropical plants (<50 ℃ the next few nights), and put the blankets back on the bed.

  100. Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate) says

    1st: Hoooray! for good Redhead news.
    2nd: I am wearing socks. Because my feet were cold in September. This is not okay with me.
    3rd: Thanks so much for your response to my work question. Gave me some good things to think about. I might work on a script that involves “Thanks for pinpointing where things went wrong, don’t worry about apologizing because I know you’re learning.” Or something.

    Thank you so much for opening up about your experiences to help me with my work thing. I really appreciate your sharing that. I don’t know where L’s tendency-for-apology comes from, but I don’t doubt it’s from some sort of ingrained insecurity and desire to ensure she’s meeting expectations. Your mention of your boss who curtly moved onto the next topic sort of made me realize that that’s what I do right now. I’m worried she sees me as rude, so I’m going to try to work on actually explicitly verbalizing. Yesterday something went wrong because of her but she had no way to know to avoid it and so I simply said “Don’t waste energy being sorry, we’ll fix it together, no big deal.” I felt like a dismissive jerk. Fine-tuning…

    Anyway, thanks.

  101. says

    I must apologize again for my ‘ruptedness. The reboots of the Lounge have coincided with weekend camping and I found myself disliking finding myself (yeah, I did that) two days behind things I wanted to respond to. Add that to my already stated reluctance to “Me, too” and I lose the Lounge. Obviously, I need to get over something, because I like interacting here and miss it.

    But still, I’d like to share this. A set of more or less “intellectual” jokes.

    Entropy isn’t what it used to be.

    This one may not format correctly:

    The bartender says, “We don’t serve time travelers here.”
    A time traveler goes into a bar.

  102. says

    I only serve travelers from around the cosmos. No time travelers at my bar. They can’t handle the Fireball.

    Here’s an interesting study on Hollywood’s treatment of LGBT actors. It’s apparently the first of its kind.
    Here’s an article from Deadline about the study:

    A survey of 5,700 SAG-AFTRA members has found that more than half of lesbian, gay and bisexual performers “have heard directors and producers make anti-gay comments about actors” and that “53% of LGBT respondents believed that directors and producers are biased against LGBT performers.” The study (read it here), conducted by UCLA’s LGBT think tank Williams Institute and funded by the SAG-Producers Industry Advancement and Cooperative Fund, will be presented formally tonight during simultaneous guild town hall meetings in L.A. and NYC.
    The study also found that more than a third of respondents reported that they had witnessed “disrespectful treatment” to LGBT performers on the set. Almost one in eight of non-LGBT performers reported witnessing discrimination against LGBT performers, including anti-gay comments by crew, directors and producers.

    “We found that LGBT performers may have substantial barriers to overcome in their search for jobs,” said the authors of the study, M. V. Lee Badgett, a Williams Institute Distinguished Scholar and Director of the Center for Public Policy and Administration, and Jody L. Herman, manager of Transgender Research at the Williams Institute, UCLA School of Law.

    One thing I’m becoming increasingly annoyed with is the tendency to use ‘gay’ as shorthand for LGBT. It’s not. Unless you’re specifically talking about gay people, ‘gay’ shouldn’t be used. If you’re referring to both sexual orientation and gender identity, LGBT should be used, or queer (though I don’t know how much that’s used outside of the queer community-obviously not counting when it’s used as a slur).

  103. Pteryxx says

    Just saying thank you to Tony! and rq for keeping the Good Morning America thread going – there’s just SO much news and so much information. Between RL and computer problems it’ll be a few days before I can catch up. (I’m less sick, at least.)

  104. says

    24 year old woman born without cerebellum

    The cerebellum is a portion of the brain that is responsible for fine motor movements including posture, balance, motor learning (like learning to kick a ball), and speech. Located at the base of the skull, the cerebellum contains about half of all neurons in the brain, though it represents only 10% of the volume. Losing partial function due to injury or disease isn’t completely unprecedented, though lacking a cerebellum from birth is exceedingly rare. Physicians in China discovered a 24-year-old woman who is only the ninth known case of a living person with cerebellar agenesis. Her condition was described in the journal Brain.

    The woman’s condition was discovered after she sought medical attention due to nausea and vertigo. CT scans and MRI images revealed the missing cerebellum, which readily explains why those symptoms would be present. It also explains why she wasn’t able to speak until she was six and wasn’t able to walk until age seven. She had never been able to play and jump like normal kids due to this defect.

  105. Brony says

    I tried posting an apology for using an offensive phrase in the reddit/4chan thread in my comment at #93, but I’m not seeing the apology comment for some reason. I actually misspelled the one in my comment, but not in the apology posts.

    I wanted to make it clear that I am sorry for the phrase I used and that I slipped into old habits. I did see and participate in the argument about it in the Thunderdome so it is particularly embarrassing.

  106. Brony says

    Oh hell, I’ll just rephrase the apology. I did not need to say anything here. I panicked a bit, sorry everyone.

  107. says

    Tony @ 138

    Ah, it seems I should have read your link/quote more closely. My comment was the Brain link mentioned in your quote:

    Her condition was described in the journal Brain.

    Brain is the link I posted, as far as I can tell.

  108. says

    Incidentally, the study I linked to upthread about the treatment of LGBT performers in Hollywood was the result of feedback from 5,692 respondents, with 301 identifying as bisexual, 465 as gay men, 61 as lesbians, and 7 as transgender (they didn’t break down whether it was trans men or trans women; nor did they break down if it was bisexual men or women).

  109. says

    From Lynna’s link @ 89

    We can’t handle the healthcare and education today for our own population

    And whose fault is that, shit for brains?!!?!?! Maybe if you pestilential parasites would quit polluting the political province with your pusillanimous prevarications, we could actually make things work for once.

    What makes it worse is that I can’t blame it on anyone.

    Sure you can. Blame it on the Republicans/Conservatives generally. I can’t prove beyond a doubt that they’re at fault for this particular instance of the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation’s Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco being a total clusterfuck, but whenever regulatory agencies are total clusterfucks, it’s usually their fault.

  110. rq says

    Depending on the word, if you spelled it right, it probably tripped the filter automatically. There’s a list of those.

  111. says

    From my link to the Deadline article @134, here are some examples given in the study of discrimination faced by LGBT performers:

    “I’ve seen gay men read for straight roles and when they left the room, the casting director indicated that they would not be taken seriously in the straight role because they were gay.”

    · “A director told me to recast a role after he found out the lead was a gay male.”

    · “An openly gay extra was fired because the lead character felt uncom­fortable having him around. In fact, two were fired a week apart for the same reason.”

    · “I’ve witnessed actors discarded fol­lowing an audition as being ‘wrong’ for a role because of perceived sexual image. As in ‘he’s too fey to play it,’ or ‘she’s too butch to play it.’”

    · “A friend almost cast a transgender actress and then found out and reconsid­ered because there would be a kiss with an actor and he did not know how the actor would feel.”

    · “People referred to the [transgen­der] performer as a ‘tranny’ and made references to using prostitution to pay for the procedures, all behind the per­former’s back.”

    · “Female actress making a disgusted face and saying ‘he’s so gay’ towards a cast member. A general feeling of ‘I can’t talk too much to this guy’ from a TV crew towards an actor. All this needs to stop.”

    · “A transgender person …[was] told not to use the changing room to change in, but given no alternative except the bathroom to change in. Most people from background to crew members treated them like an outcast.”

    · “I was told by my agent that the casting director was afraid that I would come off as uncomfortable when put into a scene in the actual production with a female love interest. I wasn’t even given the opportunity to read opposite an actress at the callback for the part.”

    · “I was cast in a commercial – although I have no proof, I believe that after I was overheard talking about marriage equality that the producers decided to fire me….I was pulled aside and told that they had made a mistake hiring me – that they had meant to hire someone else. I later heard from other actors that they were scrambling trying to find an­other actor to come to set to replace me.”

    · “Director/writer fired me four weeks into rehearsal stating I wasn’t ‘masculine’ enough for the role as he’d conceived it, tho[ugh] this note had not been stated before. And this was shortly after I had come out (not come on) to him.”

  112. rq says

    And yet I’m mystified by the fact that it’s perfectly okay, even ground-breaking and career-making, for a straight person to play a gay role (see: Brokeback Mountain). Why not let gay people be avant-garde and make their career with an excellently done straight role? (Some snark may apply to second sentence.)

  113. opposablethumbs says

    Rock Hudson wasn’t a good enough leading man for these people?

    Dalillama, may I just say I like your way with words.

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

    Slowly crawling my way back to some semblance of a civil(ish) humanity.

    Hey rq, care to tell my your favourite weird chord that includes G and D? I’ll give you a writing credit, not that the punters at the pub will remember when they sober up.

  115. Julie says

    I know it’s not down in the nitty-gritty chemical biology of it but I don’t understand something about disbelief in random mutation. Isn’t the fact that all my siblings look different proof of the random mutation mechanism of evolution? What am I not understanding?

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

    I’m no expert on this Julie, but I think you’re conflating mutation with recombination. Recombination is the shuffling of genes you get from sexual reproduction. That’s what is largely responsible for the difference in siblings. Mutation is when a gene is changed in and of itself. Your siblings could look different also due to mutation, but that is much, much rarer. I think?

    And now I humbly await the inevitable confirmation of my ignorance. (One of the things I love about this place: no matter the topic, there’s someone here who really knows what they’re talking about.)

  117. says

    No, that’s more like recombination of chromosomes. Think an ice cream stand with different toppings: If each one of you and your siblings got 5 scoops you would end up with something that is still fairly similar (ice cream with toppings), but also quite different. Random mutation would be more like an accident in the production line where the chili is added to the rice crispies instead of the crisps. Depending on the amount this can go unnoticed (benign), become a huge success (benevolent) or result in everything being thrown out.

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

    And now I shall have to go to be with my chordal question unresolved….

  119. rq says

    My favourite chord with G and D also has an A in it, and that’s it. I’ve always wanted to stick an F# on that, too, though, if it needs to be weirder still. Couldn’t name it for the life of me, but there you are. Sorry if I missed you, I’ve been bad with refreshing the Lounge lately. Email?

  120. rq says

    PS I don’t actyually know the names of any chords, since I have never worked with chords, besides learning my triads and dominant and diminished fifths. Generally I just play/sing the notes written for my part, and trust the conductor when he says it sounds about right.

  121. rq says

    Actually, can I just gripe for a bit? Totally self-absorbedly. A dishes thing. :P When I’m away at work, Husband has no issues (that I know of) doing the dishes, no matter if he’s had to do the entire dinner prep or just some of it, or none at all. When I’m at home, suddenly it’s either (a) a long-drawn out semi-sarcastically humourous attempt to drag him into assisting (with most of the responses of the ‘Do I have to?’ type, or (b) no action at all. And I’m wondering is it because I’m home? Is it some weird automatic assumption that I’ll take care of it – either that evening or the next day? (Because I fucking hate leftover dishes from the previous evening, except in strict, pre-defined situations arrived at through mutual agreement on the unnecessity of doing the dishes that evening.)
    So now I’m being petty and not putting the dishes in the dishwasher, even though I know he’ll want to leave ASAP to the country once he gets home. I’ll do them within the hour, no worries, but right now I’m working on fooling the brain into believing that I’m doing so totally voluntarily. But dammit, it’s annoying.
    Oh, and I’ve been reducing pastry intake, but there’s some on the kitchen table that I should share with the kids… but I’m having a hard time suppressing the desire to EAT THEM ALL NOW!!!!
    Okay, end rant. I feel better now.

  122. dianne says

    This is what I don’t understand about disbelief in random mutation: DNA is not a mysterious thing. We know what it is, we know how it works, we can play with it in the lab. One thing that you learn very, very quickly if you do play with it in the lab is that it mutates quickly. One problem with PCR diagnosis of disease is that it’s hard to tell a true positive (i.e. this mutation is present in the patient) from a false positive (i.e. the mutation happened in the PCR amplification.) So how can people in a modern, first world country NOT believe in random mutation when we see it in the lab all the time?

  123. says

    rq, hugs! I think it’s the assumption that you’re there, so you’ll take care of it. Mine sometimes wanders off after he’s finished eating dinner, without even clearing his own place, and he knows better.

    Can you put the pastries someplace out of your direct line of sight, or will they just keep calling your name?

  124. bassmike says

    rq in our house I’m the one who prepares the meal, and does the washing up. I’ve never really understood the reluctance to assist/do the washing up; if you have a dishwasher there’s even less excuse!

  125. consciousness razor says

    My favourite chord with G and D also has an A in it, and that’s it. I’ve always wanted to stick an F# on that, too, though, if it needs to be weirder still. Couldn’t name it for the life of me, but there you are.

    Well, without the F#, that’s a quartal/quintal sonority. It doesn’t exactly have a name or function in tertian harmony because… well…. it’s made of people fourths, not thirds. It’s breakin’ teh rulez.

    Assuming you also include F#…. Is G in the bass, the lowest note?

    D / G — meaning D major, over a note G. That’s the simplest route to take, if you hate people who actually attempt an analysis and wanted to throw them off the scent of your (probable) trickery.

    Whether G’s in the bass or not, another (only slightly whacky) way to identify it would be this:

    GΔ9 (omit 3)

    I’d assume the third (if it weren’t omitted) would be B, not Bb, because F# is a major seventh, and we’re already making enough assumptions as it is.

    The choice depends on how the chord functions: its context in other chords around it. Most likely, considering the open fifths, I’m guessing for you it probably works as a G major ninth (again, lacking the third). Sort of has a static but uneasy feeling about it. This could be useful information somehow, as you might consider tossing in a B or Bb too. If that sounds too off the wall, then it’s probably doing something else entirely.

  126. says

    Republican dunderheads in Missouri overrode an earlier veto of Governor Jay Nixon to pass an anti-abortion bill that requires a 72-hour waiting period. Jay Nixon is a Democrat, the legislators that overrode the veto are Republicans.

    Missouri lawmakers on Wednesday tripled the time a woman must wait to get an abortion, making its new 72-hour waiting period the nation’s second-strictest.

    Only South Dakota and Utah have equally long waits. South Dakota’s is the strictest, as it excludes weekends and holidays from the wait and contains no exceptions for rape or incest. Missouri’s law, which will go into effect 30 days from Wednesday’s vote, according to the Associated Press, also contains no exception for rape or incest.

    Washington Post link.

    Governor Nixon called the GOP policy “extreme and disrespectful toward women,” and he noted that it “serves no demonstrable purpose other than to create emotional financial hardships for women.”

  127. rq says

    consciousness razor
    Wow, thanks for that analysis. :D Was not expecting, but good – and I do this kind of visually, with, yes, G at the bottom in the basses. No real reason. But I suddenly feel like going down to the piano to play around with those Bs and Bbs. (And yes, static and uneasy sounds about right. And trickery? Hrmph.)

    Thanks, I ate one pastry but resisted the rest, so I count that more of a win than anything else. Then again, I haven’t been down to the kitchen since…

    bassmike (and Anne)
    That’s the thing, we do have a dishwasher. And it’s always better to put fresh dirty-yet-rinsed dishes in than those that have been standing around for a while.
    But oh well, as I said, things are generally fine. I just don’t like the wandering-off aspect (or, turning-telephone-games-on aspect) of post-dinner non-conversation.

  128. Brony says

    Hello everyone!
    @Tony 134
    That study is interesting in unfortunate ways. Should I be surprised that another stereotype that I was raised to believe is bullshit? That Hollywood is totes gay-friendly to the point that it is a threat to conservative culture, and Hollywood would never see discrimination problems for LGBT people?

    How many more cultural portrayals do I have to discover are in fact covers for abusers, and tools for bigots (the answer is all of them but this sucks…)

    @rq 148
    I read about that. I’m very very interested. I’ve been wishing that they would come up with chemically long-term birth control options for men. I don’t really want surgery options if I can help it.
    @ 157
    I’m sorry about your husband. For full disclosure until recently I was too much like that myself and sarcastic humor was a defense mechanism. I can’t say what the the defense is for in your husbands case. In mine it was for avoiding ADHD related memory issues and my wife and I have gotten some help from a book that talks about patterns that ADHD causes in both partners in marriage.
    @julie 150
    FossilFishy, and Giliell’s answers are correct. The differences we see between siblings have more to do with the mixing of the DNA from parents from unique subtleties in the expression of genes from parental gene mixtures, and the nurture effects from slightly different experiences of siblings. The unmutated “mechanical bits” of what we are and how they interact have a whole lot of variety all by themselves. DNA changes tend to only accumulate in noticeable ways over longer periods of time. We are different from our parents by an average of a couple of thousand base pairs though so someday we might be able to measure those effects. The signal of new mutations just does not stand out from the noise most of the time.

    @dianne 159

    So how can people in a modern, first world country NOT believe in random mutation when we see it in the lab all the time?

    Unfortunately because they are not in the lab. And they have a cultural echo-chamber that tells them things about what is going on in labs that is not true, and encourages them to avoid information about what is going on in labs. “Seeing is believing” too often.

  129. says

    Brony @171:

    That study is interesting in unfortunate ways. Should I be surprised that another stereotype that I was raised to believe is bullshit? That Hollywood is totes gay-friendly to the point that it is a threat to conservative culture, and Hollywood would never see discrimination problems for LGBT people?

    I thought the same thing. Funny thing is, up to a point, it’s accurate. The study points out that the willingness of LGBT performers to be out to other groups in the profession decreased as those groups’ decision making power increased, with the least openness to producers, the media, and industry executives.

  130. Brony says

    @ Tony
    So it’s more like this is highlighting some of how discrimination and bigotry works, by filling in where they shade towards more discrimination and bigotry in a culture that is more LGBT friendly?

  131. blf says

    There’s the mildly deranged penguin’s strategy for dealing with the dishes, which she applies with great gusto. It varies depending on which paces of construction equipment she has in her pockets or hidden away under one of the cheeseboards, but is generally of the form of driving over them(the dishes) in streamroller or using a cement mixer as a dishwasher (and cleaning off the cement with a piledriver, jackhammer, or burning bar).

    My strategy for doing the dishes is to let her deal with them. This means the relocated lair is now full of dishes awaiting her attention, and sporting several thriving civilizations, at least one of which is working on either interstellar space travel or else unsynchronized mass bombarde playing with the Amps turned all the way up to 12.

  132. blf says

    Gundies (gun fundies) and their stooges, the goons (“police”), on the rampage, Chicago priest ‘receives death threats’ after gun control rally outside store:

    Illinois affiliate of NRA brands Catholic clergyman an Isis-style ‘terrorist’ following protest calling for tighter gun restrictions

    A Catholic priest on Chicago’s South Side claims he has received death threats from gun-rights advocates following a weekend rally in front of a local gun shop that authorities say is the number one supplier of guns recovered from crime scenes in the city.

    Father Michael Pfleger, the pastor of Saint Sabina church, says the threats originate from social media posts and internal emails from the Illinois State Rifle Association (ISRA), an affiliate of the wider National Rifle Association (NRA), and its supporters which are calling Pfleger a “terrorist” and likening him and similar advocates to Isis, the terrorist organisation also known as Islamic State.

    The threats escalated last weekend when Pfleger led about 300 people in front of Chuck’s Gun Shop & Pistol Range in suburban Riverdale, an effort in coordination with the Brady Centre to Prevent Gun Violence in Washington. NRA members staged a counter-protest. According to Pfleger, local police barred his assembly from entering the shop door to meet with its owner and forced them to walk back and forth between two assembled NRA groups where they were verbally threatened. He also says he received many threatening emails and phone calls at his church before and after the event.

    “We would like to tell Pfleger one thing: Come for our guns and you will know what hell on earth is all about — Got it?” read one email, he said.

    Rich Pearson, the ISRA executive director, says he stands by his effort to label Pfleger a “terrorist”.

    “You have to call him what he is. He’s an anti-gun terrorist, he’s trying to destroy businesses, he’s trying to prevent people from having the right of self-defence,” Pearson says.

    Mark Potok, an expert on extremism at the Southern Poverty Law Centre in Montgomery, Alabama, says the NRA has “a moral responsibility” to moderate its language.

    Pfleger says he is deeply worried that “guns have become a first line of offence in how we handle our problems in America.” The threats, however, have not deterred his advocacy.

    In addition to the goons, I’d suggest the real “terrorists” here are the No Rational Arguments gundies.

  133. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    Long piece on the death of adulthood in modern pop culture, rather interesting conclusion at the end.

    A working definition of “adulthood” would have improved that essay, I think. I’m not sure if I agree with her argument or not, given that.

  134. cicely says

    *hugs-back* for opposablethumbs.
    That beach art is terrific!
    And I’m reminded of a…ah…very heated conversation I had with a woman who believed that crop circles are Aliens At Work, who considered it impossible that anything that large and intricate could be done in just the hours of darkness.
    I told her that it would be a trivial effort for any competent marching band.

    *on-going hugs* and support for Tony!.


    Governor Nixon called the GOP policy “extreme and disrespectful toward women,” and he noted that it “serves no demonstrable purpose other than to create emotional financial hardships for women.”

    It also serves to signal voters on the far-Right that they can be trusted be vote in a suitably discriminatory fashion, and should therefore be re-elected.

  135. blf says

    Crop circles, being obvious, are obviously distractions. Or bait

    The real alien artifact is that fleet of upside down invisible floating giant pyramids which is behind you. Always behind you…

  136. Esteleth is Groot says

    Today, at my therapy appointment (yes, I have a therapist) I was babbling on about some detail or another of my childhood and my therapist broke in.

    “You mention frequently that you were a “difficult” child or a “handful.” Tell me, how often were you told that you were “good” or made to feel that you were valued as a child?”

    I’m sure that it happened from time to time (and I said so), but I honestly cannot recall a specific instance.

    Huh. May have had a breakthrough there.

  137. blf says

    Ye Groot, That sounds promising / encouraging.

    But I must ask…
    Was there a strange crack in yer bedroom wall? With voices and something about a “Prisoner Zero”? And a raggedy doctor…?

  138. Esteleth is Groot says

    Was there a strange crack in yer bedroom wall? With voices and something about a “Prisoner Zero”? And a raggedy doctor…?

    What? I have no idea what you’re speaking of.

  139. says

    Yay for the breakthrough!

    As if regular tornadoes aren’t scary enough

    Hollywood, death by lava is such a cliché. No worries, though: Iceland is here to help. Last week, the country’s cold, stormy weather and blazing volcanic eruption hatched a terrifying new way to die at volcanoes — the volcano tornado.

    The toxic tornadoes were spotted in a poisonous cloud of sulfur dioxide gas spewing from Iceland’s Holuhraun lava flow on Sept. 3. One narrow, swirling column stretched 3,300 feet (about 1 kilometer) into the air. A remotely monitored infrared camera caught the dramatic whirlwinds on video.

    “We haven’t seen anything like this before,” said Fred Prata, chief technology officer at Nicarnica Aviation in Kjeller, Norway, the inventor of the infrared camera used for the images. “I was quite surprised to see it.”

    Nicarnica’s infrared camera can track ash clouds from planes, but is now undergoing a ground-based test run in Iceland through the FutureVolc project, an international collaboration to monitor Europe’s natural hazards.
    The volcano tornado was most likely a spinning ribbon of sulfur dioxide gas, similar to a fire tornado, Prata told Live Science.

    Tornadoes born from fires and volcanoes are completely different beasts from the lethal tornadoes spawned by powerful thunderstorms. A true tornado spins up in the atmosphere and requires colliding cool and dry air fronts, wind shear (rotating air) and warm, moist air near the ground.

    But narrow volcano and fire whirlwinds rise from ground level, not from high in the sky. In these terrible twisters, superheated dry air starts spinning faster and faster until the vortex tightens into a tall, tornadolike column. (The phenomenon is similar to a figure skater who rotates faster by tucking her arms closer to her body.)

  140. says

    Esteleth @179, hugses, and I hear you. I vividly remember many, many times I screwed up, and many, many times my dad told me what a useless horrible kid I was, but I don’t remember him ever telling me I’d done something right. He must have at some point, yes? But I don’t remember any. Not until he was in the hospital, his last year, and I was camping out at their house taking care of them. Then he said I was “one of the good ones”. Anyway, I think you’re onto something there. More hugs.

    Tony!, I read your “toxic tornadoes” as toxic tomatoes, and I had to look again before I got it right. My brain is very weird when sleep-deprived.

  141. says

    Anne @184:
    Thanks for that link. I love reading stories that show people-especially women-successfully breaking out of traditional gender roles.

    As for ‘toxic tomatoes’, hee hee! Must be the second sequel to Attack of the Killer Tomatoes (Return was the first sequel).

  142. says

    Oh, this is just deeply asinine:
    State Rep. Paul Joseph Wieland and his wife Teresa are suing the Obama administration over its minimum coverage requirements for health plans under the Affordable Care Act, which includes contraception. They say the government is forcing them to violate their religious beliefs because they have three daughters, ages 13, 18 and 19, who are on their parents’ plan and might get birth control at no additional cost. […]
    “The employees are to Hobby Lobby what the daughters are to Paul and Teresa Wieland,” Timothy Belz, an attorney from the conservative Thomas More Society, who represents the Wielands, told a panel of three federal judges on the appeals court in St. Louis on Monday. A district court had dismissed the case, saying the Wielands lacked standing to sue.

    Belz also said that making birth control more accessible under health plans was “as though the federal government had passed an edict that said that parents much [sic] provide a stocked unlocked liquor cabinet in their house whenever they’re away for their minor and adult daughters to use, and Mormons came in and objected to that. It is exactly the same situation.”

    I won’t be able to dictate what my children will do to when they reach adulthood, so I want the government to. WTF?!

  143. Esteleth is Groot says

    If they argued that they should have a say in the doings of their 13-year-old, a court might listen to them, as she’s a minor. But “I should be allowed to meddle in the affairs of my legally adult children” isn’t going to fly anywhere.

  144. JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness says

    #131 Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate)

    Thank you so much for opening up about your experiences to help me with my work thing. I really appreciate your sharing that. I don’t know where L’s tendency-for-apology comes from, but I don’t doubt it’s from some sort of ingrained insecurity and desire to ensure she’s meeting expectations. Your mention of your boss who curtly moved onto the next topic sort of made me realize that that’s what I do right now. I’m worried she sees me as rude, so I’m going to try to work on actually explicitly verbalizing. Yesterday something went wrong because of her but she had no way to know to avoid it and so I simply said “Don’t waste energy being sorry, we’ll fix it together, no big deal.” I felt like a dismissive jerk. Fine-tuning…
    Anyway, thanks.

    I’m quite happy to help and am glad that you’re thoughtful and considerate of her enough to ask. I didn’t think of my good boss as rude, so you might be stressing over nothing. If she does, well then maybe instead of just critiquing yourself you could bring it up to her. Rather than just assuming or saying you’re sorry for being rude, ask if she’s felt you being dismissive or rude towards her. It’ll show you care, you can find out what she prefers and open up a dialogue. Discussion just how things are said, not just what, rarely comes up in work conversations unless you’re apologizing for a grievous wrong like cursing someone out. So breaching that subject on a different topic, might her more comfortable and maybe even open up later.

    That’s another thing my good ol’ boss was good at. Pity I didn’t appreciate it then. But of course, my experience is different. I was so young at my first job, trying so hard, and utterly clueless on such simple things. Huh, I’m still the latter two of those, really. I feel like I was raised by wolves.*

    *Pteryxx, If only Nighteyes and Wolf-father! So much better than regular people, if I must say.**
    **Book reference, couldn’t help it. Sorry, everyone else.

  145. says

    Sometimes little accomplishments can make you feel good.
    In this thread at the Mary Sue, commenter Kris Kail says:

    My problem with “Lady Thor” and “Black Captain America” is that they’re basically saying its the highest honor for a female to attain the identity of a male or a black guy to attain the title of a white guy. The Falcon is a strong enough hero on his own, it shouldn’t be praised that he’s taking on the mantle of Captain America. The female Thor issue isn’t as deep as the Falcon/Black Captain America issue, because this is a new character entirely who can hopefully be as deep and fleshed out as Carol Danvers, but the point still needs to be made that its problematic to have a female or a person of color take on the mantle of a traditionally straight white male and have that be considered an “honor”.

    I responded to them with this:

    I disagree with you on Falcon. In the US, race relations haven’t improved significantly since the end of the Civil Rights Movement (there has been some progress, but we take a few steps forward and several backward). Race, and how it is treated in this country is an ongoing issue. There appears to be no resolving this issue anytime soon. The treatment of African-Americans in the US is often, well CRAPPY comes to mind (look no further than the death of Michael Brown or the disproportionate presence of blacks in prison). Black people are still viewed by many people as inferior or unworthy of respect. Blacks are still viewed as being thugs and degenerates by many.
    The idea of putting a black man in a role that symbolically represents the United States is a powerful statement. It’s saying that black men can represent this country too. It’s saying that the values often associated with the US aren’t held by just white people. Those values are held by and important to black people too (let’s leave aside for a moment whether the US actually embodies those values).

    Xe responded back with:

    That’s a VERY good point. While I still think its weird to say giving a black man a white man’s title is a high honor, I will agree that America shouldn’t be a white man’s country and anyone should be able to represent it. You got me rethinkin this.

  146. says

    While I’m on the subject of The Mary Sue, Here’s a new post about fat-shaming:

    Since it looks like fat shamers need a reason to stop doing it other than they’re an adult and should know better, how about this: A new study shows that what people need isn’t less of whatever food fat shamers have decided would be most insulting to taunt them about—we really just need less fat shamers.

    The weight gain data was pulled from the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing, which takes a broad look at lifestyle and health of the UK population over the age of 50.
    Dr. Jane Wardle, one of the authors on the study and professor of Clinical Psychology at University College London, wrote in UCL’s release:

    Our study clearly shows that weight discrimination is part of the obesity problem and not the solution. Weight bias has been documented not only among the general public but also among health professionals; and many obese patients report being treated disrespectfully by doctors because of their weight. Everyone, including doctors, should stop blaming and shaming people for their weight and offer support, and where appropriate, treatment.

  147. says

    I just noticed that I got what I think is my first Pitter comment on my blog. I didn’t realize it was a Pitter at first, until I was poking around looking at where some traffic was coming from. I’ve since deleted the comment.

  148. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says


    As an engineer, a human being, and a person who just purchased and will be returning a leather vest one size larger than what I wear comfortably in t-shirts, let me just say, we require a new constitutional amendment:

    1) each size of clothing indicated by standard sizing labels, indicted by numbers, letters, any combination thereof, or any other system except that of explicitly stated tailoring measurements relevant to the design of the garment in question, shall be required to conform to specific standard measurements – thus, every “XXL” garment will have a specified chest measurement, a specified waist measurement (if different from the chest), a specified sleeve length, and so forth.

    2) every article of clothing sold according to such standard sizing labels shall be required to conform to these measurements within margins of error to be established.

    3) the decision-makers responsible for any line of clothing sold which does not conform to these specified measurements shall be required to EAT THE ENTIRE FUCKING PRODUCTION RUN, evenly distributed among them.

    (I slipped a “3XL” vest on over a comfortably-fitting “2XL” t-shirt. It is not merely unclosable, THE BUTTONS ARE SEVEN FUCKING INCHES APART!!!!)

  149. blf says

    If the cat would get up, I could change the sheets.

    Trebuchet. You can launch the cat up to whatever altitude desired. And, for that matter, the sheets. And the bed, albeit that will tend to go BOOM! on landing and thereafter be mostly useful as chopsticks (if made of wood)…

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


    I know that US doesn’t care much about international law, so I suggest making that international law in addition to making it a constitutional amendment.

  151. blf says

    Nobody can make you despair as much as your own kid.

    Yeah, if overcooked they tend to be tasteless or chewy.

  152. says

    Ever since the new school year started she’s decided that homework is for other people. It’s not that she’s having difficulties with the exercises, it’s just that she doesn’t want to. So far our Saturay consisted of nothing because milady’s not been doing her maths homework for the past 5 hours.

  153. UnknownEric the Apostate says

    I can empathize. My daughter has also decided that asking her to do tiny bits of homework is cruel and unusual and will throw pencils and cry rather than just doing the 2 minutes of homework given. She also refuses to learn how to read. It’s going to be a long, long year.

  154. says

    This may have come up in the Lounge earlier, but there are a few new developments:

    An atheist member of the U.S. Air Force has been told he must swear “so help me God” as part of his military oath or else he will be forced to leave the service, the Air Force Times reports. The airman, who has not been identified by name, is currently serving in the Air Force at Creech Air Force Base in Nevada until the end of his current term of service in November, but was denied reenlistment last month when he refused to sign a sworn oath that included the religious phrase.

    Slate link.


    In the Army and Navy, Americans have the discretion to omit those final four words. The Air Force, however, has a different “interpretation” of Pentagon regulations, and has told the unnamed airman that he will be excluded from military service, regardless of his qualifications, unless he swears an oath to God.

    It’s worth noting that the U.S. Constitution – the one the military supports and defends, and which trumps Defense Department regulations and forms – says quite explicitly that “no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States.” To date, the Air Force has found this unpersuasive.

    Some notable conservative voices have rushed into the debate to endorse the Air Force’s policy. The American Family Association’s Bryan Fischer said, “There is no place in the United States military for those who do not believe in the Creator.” He added, “A man who doesn’t believe in the Creator … most certainly should not wear the uniform.” […]

    The airman in question is considering a legal challenge to the policy blocking his military service. […]

    Last quoted material is from Steve Benen of The Maddow Blog.

    Those “notable conservative voices” are just putting their ignorance on display. I hope the airman gets all the legal support he needs to fight this.

  155. says

    Christians often don’t act like their own definition of Christ-like Christians. Case in point: Reginald Wayne Miller. (This story reminds me of the frequently awful conditions and hours in which Mormon leaders make their missionaries work.)

    Reginald Wayne Miller, the president of Cathedral Bible College, was arrested Thursday on accusations that he forces foreign students at his school to work long hours for low wages and then threatens to revoke their student visas if they complain or fail to comply with his demands.

    The 65-year-old Miller — whose school recently moved from the former Myrtle Beach Air Force Base to Marion, where Miller now lives — was booked into the Florence County Detention Center shortly after 2 a.m. on Thursday. […]

    Agents with Homeland Security Investigations filed a criminal complaint against Miller saying they have probable cause to charge him with forced labor, a felony that carries a maximum prison sentence of 20 years for each count. […]

    Investigators this week interviewed eight Cathedral Bible College students who “described a pervasive climate of fear in which their legal status as non-immigrant students was in constant jeopardy, at the sole discretion of Dr. Miller […]

    The students told investigators that the classes offered at Cathedral Bible College “were not real” and the main focus of the school is having students work full-time hours at the campus and at Miller’s home,[…]

    The students also told investigators that their living conditions at the college were substandard, including long periods of time without any hot water, heat or air conditioning. They also stated that the food provided by the college “was expired or insufficient for consumption and nutrition,” according to the affidavit.[…]

    I’m sure Reginald Wayne Miller thinks those students are “ungrateful” and lazy.

  156. says

    Note the Air Force/Religion connection in the Cathedral Bible College case outlined in comment #206.

    […]Cathedral Bible College markets itself via the Internet to foreign students and purportedly offers degrees in theology, divinity, Christian counseling, Christian ministry and a diploma in Bible studies. The college maintains a satellite campus at the former Myrtle Beach Air Force Base for American and former military students.

    Miller, who said on his website that he earned a doctorate of divinity degree, also was the former pastor at Grand Strand Cathedral church, located on the former base.

    Miller has had a past run-in with law enforcement. In 2006, the Horry County Police Department charged Miller with lewdness and prostitution after Miller exposed himself to an undercover police officer in a bath house at Myrtle Beach State Park, according to a police report. Miller entered into a pre-trial intervention program and the charge ultimately was expunged.

    Miller moved the school to the former Myrtle Beach Air Force Base in 1995, purchasing property at a reduced rate under a federal program that gave incentives to educational facilities relocating to closed military sites. [Your tax dollars that support the military of the USA at work.]

    the federal government approved Cathedral Bible College for the visa program.

  157. says

    Giliell, UnknownEric, you have my most sincere sympathy.

    Kitty went through a phase (from about 5th grade through junior high) where she did her homework, but hid it in her bed rather than turn it in. So we had a kid who aced the tests but failed the class anyway. I never did figure out what was going on, but I suspect it was her way of rebelling.

  158. says

    Not a single fuck. I’ve told her that since she apparently has trouble doing her math, it means that she obviously spends too much time playing on the tablet, drawing, watching TV and meeting friends and that she would have to change that until she can do her homework.
    Yeah, the really anoying thing is that she can do it in no time at all.
    Tuesday she didn’t finish in school and when I told her that her friend couldn’t come if she didn’t finish it until she arrived, she managed in 20 minutes. Maths AND German

  159. says

    My sympathies, Giliell, that sounds really frustrating. I’m a lot better at the 10-and-up level of child-raising. When your sprogs get to be kidpoles, I’ll be a lot more useful.

    Does anyone else feel like snickering when they hear ‘Doctor of Divinity’, because it sounds as impressive as ‘Doctor of Applied Astrology’, or is it just me?

  160. says

    CaitieCat @213:

    Does anyone else feel like snickering when they hear ‘Doctor of Divinity’, because it sounds as impressive as ‘Doctor of Applied Astrology’, or is it just me?

    Laugh out loud so hard your brain hurts?
    Could be worse. Imagine ‘Rumpology Doctor’

  161. blf says

    Fracebork, one of the NSA’s divisions, is apparently demanding people use their real names. The idea is that will decrease the attack-posts and trolling. The far more certain disadvantage is it makes it far easier to identify people, possibly for nefarious purposes and possibly putting people’s lives / livelihoods at risk. If you are a pro-democracy advocate in Big China or Hong Kong, or gay rights advocate in many places, or numerous other examples, using your own name is a very dangerous / brave / foolish thing to do. Facebook under fire from drag queens over ‘real-name’ rule:

    • Social network demands performers use their legal names
    • 6,800 sign petition, arguing policy can be harmful

    Many in the drag-queen community are up in arms over a Facebook requirement that user accounts must be operated under “real names”.

    The performers say Facebook has forced them to use their legal names if they want to continue to access and use their accounts.

    The tech giant’s policy is resurrecting controversial questions about privacy on Facebook, as some observers argue that such “real-name” policies can be harmful to groups such as victims of abuse or activists.

    Facebook’s name policy says a profile name “should be your real name as it would be listed on your credit card, driver’s licence or student ID”. It also says that forcing people to use their real identities helps keep the social network safe.

    “If people want to use an alternative name on Facebook, they have several different options available to them, including providing an alias under their name on their profile, or creating a page specifically for that alternative persona,” Facebook said in an email sent to the Guardian.

    “As part of our overall standards, we ask that people who use Facebook provide their real name on their profile.”

    Performers, however, say that along with using their stage names for privacy reasons, their personal Facebook pages are not commercial enterprises.

    “We are not businesses selling products, we are encouraging our friends to come to our events and performances, promoting charitable causes, and making calls to political action, with occasional mundane daily life updates like every other Facebook user,” a Seattle-based performer, Olivia LaGarce, wrote in a petition.

    I’ve no idea why The Grauniad’s article is focusing (mostly) on drag queens (other than, perhaps, being seen as a colourful group with the nous to (more-or-less safely) publicly fight back). Denying protected anonymity affects far more people than just that group.
    Or why the NSA needs people to openly declare who they are.

  162. Xaivius says

    Breaking news! Photos from the secret files on what PZ’s freshman courses look like:

    Exclusive Photos!

    so yeah, I might have gone to the seattle aquarium a few weeks ago…

    In related news, looks like I’m going to be spending more time at Washington State University than I anticipated. Joy of joys.

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

    I forgot season 5 of Haven started on the 11th. Yay!

    (last two seasons were pretty much crap, but I’m still holding hope for something at least almost as good as season 1)

  164. blf says

    Does anyone else feel like snickering when they hear ‘Doctor of Divinity’, because it sounds as impressive as ‘Doctor of Applied Astrology’, or is it just me?

    No. Not feel. Do. Often loudly.

    I’ve sometimes wondered if a more accurate honorific would be “Head-in-Arse Practitioner of Credulous Handwaving” or something similar. “Poopyhead” is, however, already taken.

  165. says

    Doctor of Divinity = Doctor of God-addledness. Bobble heads of God. Hypocritic Oathtakers.

    In other god-addled news, rightwing religious doofuses have explained the problem of Ray Rice hitting his fiancé. It’s her fault.

    On his “Focal Point” radio program today, Bryan Fischer offered his insights into the Ray Rice domestic abuse scandal by saying that Rice’s then-fiancée, now-wife Janay Palmer Rice was essentially responsible for her own abuse, which was the result of engaging in unbiblical cohabitation.

    Right Wing Watch link.

    Don’t really see why God let’s Ray Rice off the hook when it comes to being punished for cohabitation.