1. says

    Rowan, your brother is an asshole. The whole thing reminds me unfondly of the way my dad used to act – never admit a mistake, throw a fit, and in his case, ban the “offender” from his home.

    Anyway, you did nothing wrong, and I am so sorry your weekend was ruined, and your week ahead made harder. [hugs and kitty snuggles and purrs.]

  2. blf says

    Today I found [my scissors] in the cutlery rack.

    Not the freezer, spice vault, vin cave, or, most usually, in orbit around one of the Kuiper Belt objects?

    Professional Tip: Don’t put them in orbit around one of the parked starships. That tends to trigger all sorts of sensors and alarms, and leads to a rash of UFO sightings. Sometimes “They” even find the scissors and return them. Please keep Outer Space tidy.

  3. opposablethumbs says

    most cables have unique connectors on each end and will only fit in a corresponding socket.

    blf, Rowan could see this. She did see it. She told The Expert that the cable he had pointed out for her use did not fit – anywhere on the device in question. Expert continues to insist that it’s the right cable and that she ought to be able to find where to plug it in.

    And this is the problem – not the cable and socket issue. In fact, it actually has nothing to do with the cable and socket issue.

  4. rq says

    Apparently it was incredibly difficult to walk into the room, take a look at the cable, and say, ‘oh crap, wrong cable, try this one!’.

  5. blf says

    most cables have unique connectors on each end and will only fit in a corresponding socket.

    blf, Rowan could see this. She did see it. She told The Expert that the cable he had pointed out for her use did not fit – anywhere on the device in question.

    YES, but what wasn’t done was Try Another Cable. That is what I am completely failing to understand.

  6. blf says

    Apparently it was incredibly difficult to walk into the room, take a look at the cable, and say, ‘oh crap, wrong cable, try this one!’.

    Yeah, the arsehole is a total idiot. But it also seems to have been too difficult to look through the collection of cables and, as one example of many, ASK, “That one does not fit, but this one does, please show me what is wrong.”

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


    Cables are not the point. Forget the cables. Brother’s reaction to this minor situation is the problem.

  8. says

    theoreticalgrrrl @483 in the “older comments” section, that is an awful story, awful thanks to the clueless mormon missionaries and their tithe-collecting supervisors/leaders/dunderheads. Almost criminal.

    That’s mormons all right. The old lady who hit her head is not worth their time because she’s not an active member. They talk a good game when it comes to charity and kindness, but even within their own tribal circle they limit their willingness to help for the most part.

    May I repost that story, (without your handle if you like), on an ex-mormon discussion board?

    Remember when Mitt Romney tried to establish his loving human nature by trotting out regular folks to extol his virtues during the Republican National Convention? All of those testiphonies came from mormons. So Mitt is, apparently, capable of helping some fellow church members while ignoring the plights of everyone else.

  9. rq says

    It is also entirely possible that the collection of cables isn’t in plain view, and that our fellow commenter was simply handed a Cable from the Sekrit Cache and not given any options. Does it matter?
    Especially since Brother’s reaction was to get angry at Rowan for having the wrong cable, and then, in the face of her upset, leave the fucking house?
    Also, offering options on how to avoid conflict with the 20/20 vision of hindsight is rather victim-blame-y, especially since in escalating emotional situations, many of us (yes, I include myself!) are unlikely to think of All the Options due to – yes! – being upset. This does not justify the horrible reaction to Rowan’s clear distress and willingness to step away from the conflict. “If you had only…” is not a good phrase for situations like these.

  10. Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate) says

    Glad the munchkin enjoyed the chocolate and it’s journey so much ^_^
    Sorry I was delayed getting your email – spent yesterday curled up in bed with a disgustingly disproportionate hangover. : p

    Rowan: *hugs*
    Ugh :(

    Sorry I was late getting your email. Sorry it turned out to be a scam. People are such royal assholes.

    Relationship with my mom is hard. Maintaining boundaries and weathering the fallout thereafter is hard. Ugh.

  11. Esteleth is Groot says

    rq, shoot me an email. Maybe we can work something out re: JAL and your lack of PayPal.

  12. says

    Tony @474, I did see that story about a mormon bishop making the claim that no good mormon can be a Democrat, therefore, praise god that Harry Reid got booted from his leadership position in the Senate.

    I think it qualifies as a Moment of Mormon Madness. It’s one of those times when a church member lower down in the hierarchy says something that most mormons believe … and then the mormon General Authorities freak the fuck out because it is such bad PR, and it’s not official doctrine, blah, blah, blah.

    The incident sparked a lot of discussion in the Salt Lake Tribune, and on ex-mormon forums. It’s still the “most popular” story on the SL Tribune site, with more than 2000 comments. Some examples below show that non- or ex-mormon readers of the newspaper are not cutting the bishop or the church any slack:

    it makes the Mormon church an arm of the Republican party
    If you can only belong to an organization if you are a republican, that is not a church, that is a political organization and should pay taxes like everyone else.
    You can hear the same comments made by this errant bishop in the parking lot after Priesthood Meeting in any ward in Utah on any Sunday. It’s part of the Mormon culture.
    Reid wasn’t elected by the LDS church. He represents the constituents of Nevada.

    And here are a few typical comments from mormons, which, I have to say, are currently swamping the reasonable comments. A lot of mormons hate Harry Reid, and a lot of right-wingers who are not mormons also hate him. I didn’t realize they had made Reid into the symbol of all that is evil.:

    Reid is totally free to support and vote for anything he wants to in his position as a Senator and as an individual citizen. He is also bound by the doctrine of the Church he with which he voluntarily associated himself. If those things he supports and votes for are counter to the doctrine of his church, he is free to leave the church and representatives of the Church are free to ask/tell him to disassociate himself if he cannot accept church doctrine. Publicly pointing out that truth may be a politically incorrect thing to do and hurt some feelings, but it remains the truth none the less. Reid’s public conduct is counter to the doctrine of his church.
    When you talk with a registered Democrat just remember that per their political platform you are talking with a registered thief (coerced wealth redistribution); a registered liar (socialism works per the progressive Dem); & a registered killer (late-term abortion is just fine). If the Mormon church wants to impact the nation, it needs to speak up for what it stands for.
    Harry Reid is a disgrace to the US Senate–not just the Mormon faith…He had the gall to slander Mitt Romney from the floor of the Senate in an election year [Oh, my, that is a sore point, slandering mormon stalwart Mitt Romney with the truth.]
    The religious community has been beaten into submission and are now addicted to that tax exemption. It tip-toes around the issues like abortion(which every religion I am familiar with considers murder) and homosexuality (which is universally an abomination to G-d!). Much of the American Revolution was fired by the churches — read your history! Pastors (Rabbis, Bishops, ….) are suppose to lead and guide —- how can they if they are muzzled!
    I agree with the bishop’s comments and I will further state that Harry Reid is either seriously mentally impaired, possessed by hateful demons, or is a dishonest thug. Anyway you look at it, he is not fit to hold a temple recommend and should never darken the doorway of the temple. His terrible example of dishonesty and thuggery blackens the eyes of the Church and it’s members. It is a good thing for him I am not his bishop. Public sins equate to public discipline.

    Official LDS church blather:

    “Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are, of course, entitled to express their own political opinions,” spokesman Dale Jones said in a statement. “However, publishing such views while using a title of a church officer, even if only as a leader of a local congregation as in this case, is entirely inappropriate.”

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

    Ever lost 5 hours trying to figure out what you did wrong, only to realize it was someone else’s mistake, but thanks to your low self-confidence you were convinced it must be yours so didn’t even bother to check until you were desperate?

    Yeah… there went my Sunday, writing and rewriting the same damn thing that was correct about 4 hours ago. I’m *this* close to crying now.

  14. rq says

    Do you like halva? I can share some of my halva with you. It’s the first real halva (that is, sesame seed halva) that I’ve found in the country. It is quite delicious.

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

    Thank you, rq.
    You remind me, I have some chocolate covered marzipan at work. Will share tomorrow.

  16. sawbones79 says

    Tony: Thanks for the tip, just the kind of thing I was looking for. Now, if I could only find an organisation dedicated entirely to exposing and counteracting the festering rot that is “gamergate”, my weekend would be complete.

  17. Akira MacKenzie says

    Well, weeks of counting every calorie that passes my lips and infrequent physical activity seem to be paying off. When I started this diet on October 2, I weighed in at 367lbs. At my last weigh-in, I was at 342 lbs.

  18. says

    Excerpt from the penguin robot story, link in #25:

    The team also studied the effects of the penguin-bot on the more-skittish emperor penguin. While the researchers used a less-costumed robot on the king penguins, they sent both the naked and furry versions into the group of emperor penguins. The scientists found that upon the approach of the first rover, 47 percent of birds tested showed no reaction and 25 percent actually demonstrated curiosity and went up to the robot. When the bot that more closely resembled one of their own, every emperor penguin allowed it to come near enough for scientists to get an electronic identification of the usually-timid bird.

    Some penguins, both adults and chicks, even tried to make conversation with the chick bot. Instead of scurrying away, they “sang to it with a very special song like a trumpet,” Le Maho told the Associated Press. Le Maho speculated that the adults’ honks were attempts to secure the rover as a mate for one of their chicks.

  19. toska says


    Now, if I could only find an organisation dedicated entirely to exposing and counteracting the festering rot that is “gamergate”, my weekend would be complete.

    I know it isn’t Anita Sarkeesian’s entire mission, but I’d say you can’t go wrong to donate to Feminist Frequency with this goal in mind. :)

  20. toska says

    As someone who works in IT, I feel the need to sort of apologize for those of us who are tech savvy. For some reason, there is this culture among tech people that feels the need to berate people who are not tech people, and it’s wrong. I see it all the time. We aren’t all like that, but unfortunately, most of us are. You did nothing wrong. You were following the advice of someone who knew what needed to be done, but was careless about it.

  21. says

    For those who may be interested, here’s a website that has collated links to, and short summaries of, all of the new essays from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

    While pretending to be “transparent” and to offer explanations for historical facts previously denied or buried, mormon leaders commissioned these essays. Then they promptly hid the essays so it would be difficult for members to find them.

    LD$ Inc. failed in their hide-the-facts-campaign because lots of other internet sources posted the essays, and provided interpretation of the still-heavily-spun “facts.”

  22. says

    Holy buckets! What a convoluted stew of conservative/mormon myths. Here’s another excerpt from the comments attached to the Salt Lake Tribune article about Harry Reid and the no-true-mormon-would-be-a-Democrat culture in mormon communities (in reference to comment #12 above):

    Taxes applied by force and extracted in order to distribute to a low class of stupid lazy people and in order to retain them as a voting block is SLAVERY pure and simple. The Democrats support slavery of 2 kinds Taxation and Dependency. Both are inarguable for the Criminalization of Harry Reids actions which in turn qualifies him for sanction from the LSD Church. He is a liar as well as a thief. It is about time he was excommunicated from the human race. Kicked out.

  23. Brony says

    Too much alcohol last night, urg…
    Did I see epic equestrian artwork on the previous page?

    @ rq 456
    I can beat Talk Sexy to Me. (I’m confused about warnings too. Some people might find it worth a warning).

    @ Rowan 488
    Don’t feel guilty. There is no cause for choosing attitude over helpfulness, and then doubling down when discovering that the mistake was one’s own. Reinforcing that sort of a habit is a flaw-building exercise. By not putting up with it hopefully he will be less likely to do it again in the future, if he is aware of it that is. On occasion my wife has let me know that I did something like that and I was oblivious to what I was doing. Maybe a camera next time?
    @ Tony 489

    I don’t understand why he (and other people like him) can’t simply say “oops, so sorry. My mistake.” It’s not the end of of the world to be wrong, especially over something relatively minor.

    I can’t speak for Rowan’s brother but in my case I think it’s a combination of aggressive personality characteristics and bad habits (and sometimes stress). Normally I’m a really friendly, upbeat, person but the last couple of years has required me to learn about how certain switches can be flipped. Every personality characteristic has particular excesses. Some people treat a contrast as a conflict instead of just something to be investigated, especially if it’s an issue they are used to being socially “dominant” with (the tech person). Something contrasted with his reality and he went to aggression to solve the “problem”.

    @ sawbones79 19
    I’ve also been wishing for an organized group of people that spent time investigating, exposing, and in general counteracting groups willing to use those kinds of tactics. That’s a bit wider than gamergate though. There are a lot of good individuals out there though. David Futrelle at We Hunted the Mammoth does really good work. I’m sure others here can point out other examples.

    @ Akira 20

  24. says

    I know that spice phenomenon.
    What I just cannot resist are those little mills with spice blends. Also, whicle it is totally possible to cook without Garam Masala I see no reason for doing so.

    Chucking in something.
    Afraid it’s not going to be mzch

    Yay! for Akira

    Your brither is an asshole. He chose to turn a situation that would not have amounted to more than a footnote into a major fight. I don’t think there’s anything you could have done to prevent him from being Terribly Offended™ except magicing the cable into a HDMI one.

  25. says

    More from the nasty comments on the Salt Lake Tribune website (in reference to comments #12 and #32):

    For me and my house we will serve the Lord, not Obama, the Hitler clone, but the Lord and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

  26. says

    Oh, almost forgot…
    Reading up on Narcistic Personality Disorder was almost like reading a description of my mother. The problem of getting them diagnosed is that they are actually convinced that they are not the problem.
    The best thing you can do is to set your own limits, which can be fuck difficult if they’re a close family member or the other parent of your child…

  27. opposablethumbs says

    toska, thank you for saying that! I wish I knew of an IT/tech savvy person locally who had your attitude. It matters a lot.
    Akira, well done and good luck! Hang on (mentally converts into proper measurements), is that … about 11 kg/almost 2 stone in about a month? Bloody hell, scratch that well done and make it a conga rats dancing line. Steady as you go, mate!

  28. toska says

    I think it helps that I don’t hang my entire identity/self confidence on my tech skills, but I’m not sure. I just notice that even tech people who are nice and professional when helping someone will joke behind their back. It’s not ok, and it needs to change, but the culture is so saturated in this attitude.

  29. kestrel says

    Giliell, you have hit the nail on the head – this is The Partner’s mother who is currently in assisted living. Talking with the doctor etc. we have concluded that No Contact is the best option available at this point. WOW. What a revelation. We hope that The Partner can take time to heal from this incredibly difficult childhood and adulthood. The damage these people leave in their wake is no joke.

    Akira, congratulations! Well done! That is very exciting.

    Agree Rowan’s brother is really over the top here. I don’t know if this is “tech people” so much as “people”. There are simply those who can not and will not ever admit to a mistake because they would lose face or something… because of course admitting to a mistake kills people, as is well known… ***near fatal eye roll*** Seen it before… SIGH.

  30. says

    Adding my two cents: the “no contact” approach is often the only good option, so I think kestrel is right there, and am wishing both kestrel and The Partner good luck with that.

    Congrats to Akira on losing weight. That is awesome.

    Rowan’s brother is a self-involved asshole. Other tech people may also be self-involved assholes, but some, including my son, are not.

  31. says

    I see that we have Pharyngulites in financial trouble. I’m so sorry that I can’t help out this time. I’m looking at a dental bill that is staggering. Have to start paying that off.

  32. says

    So sorry you were subjected to that from your brother. So many kinds of awful; bad family dynamics, patriarchal punching down; abuse with bystanders who wouldn’t help you out. That was obviously unwanted and completely undeserved. With any luck your brother is taking this time by himself to reconsider what he did. You deserve a complete apology from him. Sending hugs if you want some.
    If you want help with that setup, I’d be happy to provide some so you can enjoy your TV again. Let me know and we’ll work it out.

  33. says

    OK, I have just found the limits of my tolerance for spiders in my flat. I usually even like them and watched the little spider cocoon in the living room with interest, waiting for the little spidrens to hatch. But this is not OK. This spider was over an inch with legs, and I don’t mean those tiny body spiders with those very thin long legs, not the fat body fat legs variety, running over my floor, almost over my feet.
    No, I didn’t kill it, of course, but it needed to leave so 5 minutes ago.

  34. Brony says

    Is there anyone who I should consider contacting when it comes to gathering intelligence related to situations of interest around here? I can’t help thinking about things like gamergate in military strategic terms and I’m hoping to get better connected with people that could use the info. Unfortunately I don’t have a very well developed social sense.

    I’ve been watching for responses to this article about Women, Action & the Media partnering with twitter in dealing with Twitter harassment that Tony posted the other day. I have now found some things, but I’m hesitant to post links to places like 4chan’s /pol/ board and I’m not so sure that doing military strategy type things really fits in with the social boards around here.

    Would it be acceptable for me to post links to such places around here as long as I label them clearly?
    Who would be interested in analyzing these social conflicts in such a way and where can I find them?
    Is there a place where such strategizing takes place so I can be helpful over there?

  35. rq says

    By the way, Brony, friendship is indeed manly! Thank you for that. ;)

    Email tomorrow, but I’ll most likely snail mail it again.

  36. says

    Making Pharyngula your base of operations would make it and the regulars here targets. Probably not a good idea. It would be easy to go through the archives and find enough to doxx many of the regulars.
    I am curious what strategies you’re considering, if you can find a private place to discuss it. Looking at e.g. Anita Sarkeesian versus her opponents, one of the major problems seems to be coming up with strategies when you are public and a decent person, and your opponents are deceitful and despicable.
    If you have information that WAM would find useful, perhaps you could forward it to them?

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

    I was checking how I can report an uncovered manhole (to make it worse, it’s in an unlit corner of the street) and of course there’s an application for that.

    I’ll take a photo in the morning and we’ll see if anyone will come fix it.

  38. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Esteleth, check your e-mail.

    I’ve emptied the shredder five times today, but I can move about a lot more freely. Now for the second basket of crap. Most of which has the name of the health insurance provider on it. Quite a stack. *ugh*

  39. Brony says

    @ Wilbefort 47

    Making Pharyngula your base of operations would make it and the regulars here targets. Probably not a good idea. It would be easy to go through the archives and find enough to doxx many of the regulars.

    I completely agree which is why I just mentioned the situation and asked questions. I’m very aware of the history of this community with respect to the kind of harassment that WAM is concerned with. I’ve been a peripheral member of this community for more than ten years, but it’s only recently that I became more active. I’m not interested in doing anything that increases such risks. I also don’t want to have a bad effect on the emotional tone here. I realize that such things could be triggering.

    I am curious what strategies you’re considering, if you can find a private place to discuss it. Looking at e.g. Anita Sarkeesian versus her opponents, one of the major problems seems to be coming up with strategies when you are public and a decent person, and your opponents are deceitful and despicable.

    I’m still working out specifics myself as this is an idea that I’ve had kicking around in my head for the last three years. The general idea is that of including an extra layer of activity to what is already being done. I could say “military strategy as it relates to social conflict”, but that only technically applies because I’m mostly thinking in defensive and analytic/predictive terms. I’m not interested in using harassment, abuse, deception and similar myself. The most that I would consider in terms of what might be considered an “attack” would involve deliberately going into comment sections to help deal with large scale abusive harassment. But would be a thing to consider farther down the line if any of this is useful.
    That others are acting as if this is a war makes a military framing of the problem reasonable and logical. Planning on that sort of a strategic level is a neutral in this context since there is a conflict, people are being attacked, and human conflict has structure and form. The emotions are identical despite the virtual nature. Getting serious about treating it like a conflict helps with understanding and responding effectively. What prevents problems are clear ethics, rules, and objectives. I would not want to become what we are dealing with.
    As for where to discuss it, I’m not really sure myself.

    If you have information that WAM would find useful, perhaps you could forward it to them?

    I’ll contact them to let them know I have it. I’m not sure how useful they will find it. Basically it’s a stored copy of a 4chan thread (which don’t last forever, this one was closed). That sort of thing can allow people to think about a lot of things from how de facto enemies might react in terms of specific actions, to the opinions and attitudes making good material for best responses in comments.

  40. Brony says

    @ Dalillama
    I’m sorry that happened! Is there any way of getting the people responsible to pay?

  41. Brony says

    Related to what I said above I thought I would point out a really good tool for copying web pages for evidence and analysis later.
    They have a firefox addon. You end up with a really convenient pdf with a couple of clicks.

  42. cicely says


    Eat the ghost peppers (bhut jolokia). They’ll perk you right up. In fact, you’ll probably be running around, flapping your arms, and making roaring noises like a jetliner about to takeoff.
    Tip: Remove them from the jar first. Glass shards ruin the taste.

    But, since peppers taste only of Pain and Regret, that’s actually a plus.

    However, according to Ye Pfffft! of All Knowledge, Dr Gould was talking about Eohippus, whereas the found critter is Eurohippus, apparently a different beastie.

    PrimEvil, in either case.
    Or, possibly, prEvil.


    47 million year old pregnant horse found. Dead, of course.

    So I should hope. If They were functionally immortal as well as Elementally Eeeeeevil, there would be no hope at all.

    Dalillama, I’m so glad that you found out that it was a scam, before getting into it for money!
    I’m thinking that this may not be the first time Scammy Sammy has pulled this.

    *hugs* for JAL.
    I…may actually be able to help, a little, this time.
    I shall ask The Husband.

    Tony!, I can only be breath-taken by the way the artist has captured the Evil that is Horse.
    I fear that They will soon come for him, to punish him for ripping away the glamour with which They cloak their essential Evility.

    *hugs* and *frolicking kittens* for Rowan. I know those feelings all too well. It is not your fault.
    I’m so sorry your brother is being such an asshat—which is also not your fault..
    Next time, invite him to shove that cable Where The Sun Does Not Shine.
    You know—over Slice-way.

  43. Esteleth is Groot says

    Nerd, Giliell, emails received. Thank you.

    rq, I’ll look for your email in the morning.

  44. cicely says


    Yeah, the arsehole is a total idiot. But it also seems to have been too difficult to look through the collection of cables and, as one example of many, ASK, “That one does not fit, but this one does, please show me what is wrong.”

    I speak only for myself, as one of the Technologically Inept, but I have had too many of these apparently-obvious tech-related decisions go awry, to ever assume that just because something tech-related appears to be correct, it must be correct. And the price of making (wrong) tech-related decisions typically having the asshat upgrade the unjustified anger and emotionally-violent behavior to DEFCON 2, with an option on 1, instantly. From there, it is only one, small step to Global Thermonuclear War
    We are not talking about a Rational Responder, here.
    A Rational Responder would never have picked up the *napalm!*-thrower in the first place.

  45. Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate) says

    Two of my friends went in together and got me some cozy lovely yarn with subtle color variation. I’m so tickled. I can’t wait to make it into something for myself. :D

  46. says

    cicely, I do like your style. I wish to sit at your feet, and learn Attitude from you.

    Portia, new yarn? What will you make? Pictures, or at least descriptive adjectives, please!

    Dalillama, I hope that your horrible neighbors are indeed moving out, and that you find a nicer place to live, too.

  47. Akira MacKenzie says

    Thanks everyone. I think most of the credit goes to dropping sugared sodas and other sweetened soft-drinks from my diet, that and finding out what my actual caloric needs are per day and finding out how my previous diet fit into them… needless to say, it didn’t. I try to make smarter decisions on what I eat, and while I can’t entirely avoid eating out, at least I know that I can swap out fries for a side salad or skip the mayo on a sub.

    Hey! On the topic of food: any tips for keep lettuce fresh? Salads have become a staple but I can’t buy a bag of lettuce without it going bad in a manner of days. Yes, I’m using the fridge’s crisper, but that seems of little help.

    Getting active is a little harder for me. I still have nightmares about the horrors and indignities that were middle/high-school gym class. Right now, I try to walk laps around the upper floor of my office building during my lunch break. I can go about 3 mph, so 20 minutes is about a mile, and that’s 170 calories burned. On days off I try to put in two miles, walking from my house to my old grade school down the road and back. I don’t imagine I’ll ever do any jogging, much less run an marathon. Swimming has it’s appeal, but I’ve grown sort of self-conscious about my horrifically flabby and bloated appearance (which I’m sure is going to look WORSE once I start losing weight and I start to resemble a deflated Michelin Man). That, and there aren’t many public pools here in the sticks. The high school pool is only open to residents during the summer. I can’t swing the $50 bucks a month to join the Y.

    Any more ideas from the peanut gallery?

  48. says

    still kind of ‘rupt
    Not bloody likely.
    Definitely isn’t the first time, someone with the same surname (or pseudonym), story and (apparently nonexistent) address was listed on a site called Scamwatch.
    Congratulations on the progress. As far as advice goes, it’s going to vary depending on where you are. Specifically, if you’re not in some exurban hellscape like Dallas or Phoenix or L.A. or someplace, I might suggest getting a cheap bike and riding it on shorter trips.

  49. Rowan vet-tech says

    Ah. Well. Apparently part of the reason my brother exploded yesterday is that he’s decided to break up with his wife, who is now moving in with me. I think I got the better end of this deal.

  50. cicely says

    *hugs* for Beatrice.
    Look! *dancing kittens*!

    Congrats on the weight-loss, Akira MacKenzie!

    Lynna, that Three Different Ways To Breathe gif was awesome!
    I’ve sent the linky to an educator friend of mine.

    *extra hugs* for Dalillama; I hope they are indeed leaving. Maybe the landlord/lady issued an ultimatum?
    Sorry about the slashed tire, though.

    Anne, I am flattered.
    And *blushing*.
    But there are so many Splendidly Attitudinal people here to help you find The Way.
    And when you have found It, and claimed It, and perhaps set up a few ambush points adjacent to It (for the purpose of leaping out upon the Unwary (with optional *napalm!* traps)) then, truly, you will have found Your Way.
    *humming in a transcendentally-inspirational kinda Way*

  51. chigau (違う) says

    Akira MacKenzie
    Start with one floor down per day.
    Don’t increase or start on going up until you’re floating down that one floor.
    If your knees don’t like it, keep up the floor circuit but speed up.

    I don’t eat lettuce but you can keep celery forever in a jar of water on the counter-top.

  52. says

    Akira, congrats on the getting closer to your goals. I might suggest wrist and ankle weights for your walks, if you feel up to it and if your joints agree. It would slightly increase your calories burned, and developing muscle definition might be nice. You probably already have decent musculature if you’ve been able to remain active—it’s needed for moving that bodyweight.

  53. Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate) says


    I think I might go with something like this for my self-project. I’m very excited.
    I like this one a lot, but it seems to be in some Scandinavian language and google translate makes me leery in those sorts of situations ^_^

  54. Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate) says

    Dalillama –

    I’m so so sorry they decided to make things just extra shitty.
    Hope they are leaving.

  55. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    I don’t understand why he (and other people like him) can’t simply say “oops, so sorry. My mistake.” It’s not the end of of the world to be wrong, especially over something relatively minor.

    Some people, especially when one was going up, can do a pretty good job of burning the idea that being wrong IS the end of the world into your subconscious.

    That’s not, of course, Rowan’s fault, but I can empathize to a degree, being left in the obnoxious position where my jerkbrain responds to anticipated (reasonably or otherwise) humiliation in a fashion that’s actually humiliating. >.>

  56. says

    Wilbefort @42:

    If you want help with that setup, I’d be happy to provide some so you can enjoy your TV again. Let me know and we’ll work it out.

    How would that work?


    Damn, those neighbors are shitty as fuck. Hopefully they’re leaving soon, so you won’t have to deal with them any longer.

  57. says


    If you want help with that setup, I’d be happy to provide some so you can enjoy your TV again. Let me know and we’ll work it out.

    How would that work?

    Well, let me know the make and model of everything you want to connect, and I’ll grab their manuals off the web and go from there. At some point I’d also need to know what cables you have on hand. If you want, my name here links to my FB page; send me a friend request and we can do it through FB chat instead of cluttering the lounge with cables. Wouldn’t want to trip anyone, especially groggy peeps trying to leave the bar.

  58. rq says

    Somebody’s trying to leave the bar?

    *extrahugs* Rowan, you may have the better end of the deal, but it’s still shitty to get caught in the middle of a breakup.

    Congratulations, Akira! That’s a great start, and I hope progress continues, with all the perks that come with it. Regarding the lettuce, what kind of lettuce are you buying? I’m not sure how to keep iceberg fresh for longer, but the more leafy kinds might do better in water rather than the fridge. Really depends on the kind of lettuce, too, though – some of them are just wilty!

    Dalillama – that’s crap about the tire-slashing, I hope they are moving out! *hugs*

  59. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    Oh hai.

    In the grand tradition of recipes that no one will comment on, I offer the following rough draft:

    Demon Kooshball Infinity:
    In a 22oz glass:
    -Doubles (50mL) of:
    –Tawny Port (suggested brand TBD)
    –Tequila Anejo (suggested brand Kirkland Signature…? O.o)
    –Gin (suggested brand Beefeater, optionally half-and-half Beefeater and Bombay Sapphire East)
    –Brandy (suggested brand Korbel)
    –Rye Whiskey (suggested: High West Double Rye, or go fancy with A Midwinter Night’s Dram [need to confirm this one, subject to change])
    –Scotch (suggested: Glenmorangie La Quinta Ruban [need to confirm this one; subject to change])
    -1/2 bottle of The Bruery Smoking Wood Barrel-Aged Imperial Rye Stout, or closest approximation

    Garnish with maraschino cherry and a modest hunk of Point Reyes Blue, chase with entire 20oz bottle of Vanilla Coke in the dirty glass.

    By the time I retire I hope to make these a birthday party staple. I must arrange to have them served liberally at my memorial service….

  60. says

    Good morning

    Ha, just met a really good friend, the mum of my godson, godmother of the little one, outside of the supermarket. We managed to lose each other’s phone number by needing new phones. And since we’re both busy-busy people just driving by hoping the other one is at home is just too much time with too little hope. But the good thing about really good friends is that you both understand that life is hard and no hard feelings and we just pick up where we left.

    Swimming is my favourite exercise, ’cause I don’t feel my weight that much, as opposerd to all the land lubber sports. If you are self coscious about your body: at my local swimming pool half the people are heavier than me, half the people are thinner than me and I’m a size 18. Nobody seems to give a fuck because contrary to popular belief, people go there for some exercise (or chatting with a friend) and not for watching gorgeous bodies.
    You also probably know this already, but be careful with salads, ’cause depending on the dressing they can be real energy bombs. Personally, I find hard boiled eggs and chicken breast (without skin, of course) quite good food cause they’ll fill you up for quite some time.

    When my dad’s brother and his wife split up we decided we want to keep his wife, too. A much nicer person…
    (They are still married and come to family reunions together)

    *hugs* to your partner. I know quite well how much damage such a parent can do. It took me a lot of therapy to be able to function as a person again. I have my occasional slip-ups (and nightmares), but it got better. Incidentially, I noticed how much I have in common with people who were raised by very religious parents, even though my parents are liberal atheists.

    now for dying my hair. Can’t they invent a pill that keeps your hair from getting grey?

  61. carlie says

    Akira – I find that lettuce heads keep longer than bags of lettuce, especially if you wrap the bottom with a wet paper towel covered with plastic wrap (or a baggie). If that’s an option where you shop, that might work. You do get less per price for a head than a bag, but if a quarter of the bag is going slimy anyway, it works out about the same.

    Do you have the space to use workout videos? There are some online that you can subscribe to – someone here, I think, once mentioned a youtube channel that was all good workout videos that you can do in a typical living room, and if you search for “small space exercise” a lot of things come up. I’m a fan of ridiculously cheerful workout people, because I can both snark at them and be secretly grudgingly glad that they’re telling me I’m great. I unironically adore Richard Simmons. :) If you like walking, Denise Austin does a lot of videos that are based on “walking” in a small-ish space (four steps in every direction). (warning – she is chipper.

  62. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    … *does a quick mental calculation* …then divide among six people. >.>

    (Actually, now that I think about it there are probably other reasons why “put a representative sample of my favorite booze all in one glass” isn’t a popular trend, too.)

  63. kestrel says

    Thank you for the well wishes! Giliell, if your mother was anything at all like The Partner’s… you have my deepest sympathy. Anyone who has had to deal with NPDs, ditto. Because, yikes. I had no idea of the horrific damage and suffering they can cause. (Turns out ol’ Fred “god hates stuff” Phelps was most likely NPD.)

    Kind and gentle hugs to any who would like them, it sounds as though some people could use them. Between horrid people slashing tires and jerks leaving their wives (although this may be an improvement for the poor wife in this case) it does not sound good.

    The Cabra al Vino is soaking in the wine now and starting to look good. Now to wait… let’s see, about 6 weeks, to find out how it tastes! In the meantime the Italian hard cheese will soon be done and I will happily share with all who would like some. And look! I just baked some Scottish bannocks. I made them very lightly sweet, and baked instead of cooked them on a griddle, but I think they turned out well.

  64. says

    For the most part, the “American People” did not speak during the midterm elections:

    […] General election voter turnout for the 2014 midterms was the lowest it’s been in any election cycle since World War II, according to early projections by the United States Election Project.

    Just 36.4 percent of the voting-eligible population cast ballots as of last Tuesday,[…] To be sure, voter turnout in midterm elections is always lower than in presidential elections, so no one was expecting impressive vote totals last week.

    But 36.4% is practically the punch line to a bad joke. […]

    The apathy is tragically counter-productive – what Americans don’t like about politics invariably gets worse when voters withdraw […]

    Keep these turnout statistics in mind the next time GOP leaders hold a press conference to announce “the American people” sent Republicans to pursue a far-right agenda.[…]

    Maddow Blog link.

  65. says

    The possibility that the Supreme Court may gut the Affordable Care Act has some beneficiaries really worried. One example is David Tedrow of Durham, North Carolina:

    The Obamacare subsidies saved my life. Now, I’m scared the Supreme Court is going to gut them.

    In 2010, at 54, I was diagnosed with non-alcoholic cirrhosis (end-stage liver disease). It’s debilitating, and a transplant is the only cure.

    Tedrow published a powerful piece in the Washington Post, detailing the severity of his illness, the treatment that saved his life, and the unavoidable fact that the Affordable Care Act is directly responsible for saving his life. […]

    “After my year-long recovery is complete, I’m hoping to go back to work,” he wrote. “I’ve had three careers — in higher education, in biomedical engineering sales and as a small-business owner. Because of my insurance, I’m able to contemplate my future. And I’m really frightened that the Supreme Court might cut the subsidy for me and so many others. For me, the subsidy is the difference between life and death.” […]

    a group of regular people whose lives were saved by the Affordable Care Act wrote an amicus brief for the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals, and it’s not easy reading. These innocent Americans, whose only crime is getting sick, have faced horrible medical ordeals, and now they’re left to wonder whether the Supreme Court will effectively deliver a death sentence over the legislative equivalent of a perceived typo.

  66. Pteryxx says

    Akira, more serious congrats. That’s a lot of habit changes and food/drink changes in a very short time. Maybe the Y could give you a discount in exchange for some volunteer hours or similar – or if they have a one-session guest fee, perhaps swimming once or twice a month could fit into your budget as a start.

    re lettuce – seconding that whole heads stored upright generally last longer than bagged, especially pre-cut bagged lettuce. Also in my experience lettuce from *certain stores* lasts longer than that from others. I’m told this has something to do with their supply chains and how they handle their produce when the stores close overnight, but I’ve found that at some local stores I can get say romaine hearts that grow fluff in three days, while the same hearts at another store, packaged the same way, last a week or even two. I’ve had the best luck with whole unpackaged lettuce from the lowest-end stores. If you’re fortunate enough to have more than one store to choose from, maybe that will help.

    Reminder to all that the Horde signal is up for JAL – see her 478 on the previous page and Esteleth has offered to collect at 484.

  67. says

    Uh, yeah, rightwing dunderheads, you are publishing stories dissing the wrong Loretta Lynch! Please get a clue, and while you are at it, get some journalistic integrity.

    According to a November 8 article by Warner Todd Huston, “few are talking about” the fact nominee [U.S. Attorney General nominee Loretta Lynch] “was part of Bill Clinton’s Whitewater probe defense team in 1992.” Huston pointed to a March 1992 New York Times article that “reported that Lynch was one of the Clintons’ Whitewater defense attorneys as well as a ‘campaign aide.’” And in a November 9 article Huston’s colleague, Senior Editor-at Large Joel Pollak wrote, “The connection to Whitewater ought to provide additional fodder for Republicans during Lynch’s confirmation hearings.” Link.

    Members of the conservative media are attempting to scandalize President Obama’s Attorney General nominee Loretta Lynch by suggesting she was involved in the Whitewater investigations of the 1990s. However, the Loretta Lynch that played a bit role in Whitewater – an investigation into fraudulent real estate deals that did not include any wrongdoing by the Clintons – is a different person than Obama’s attorney general nominee. […] initially added an amusing one-sentence correction to the piece before eventually pulling it down, but not before it had already been picked up by other far-right websites – including conspiracy-theory sites like WorldNetDaily. […] Link.

    If rightwing media does decide to issue a correction, they do it badly. It’s like the clown act version of journalism:

    Breitbart then issued a ‘correction’. But like I said, it’s a correction for the ages.

    As you can see, the headline and the entire article is intact, replete with various references to Lynch’s time in the early 90s defending the Clintons. There’s a little “[Corrected]” tacked on to the headline, even though the headline stays the same. And that’s it.

    Until you get all the way down to the bottom of the piece.

    See an image of the article and the asinine correction here.

  68. says

    rq @92, thanks for dating rules link. I enjoyed that.

    In other news, President Obama gets behind net neutrality in a creative way:

    In a huge development for millions of net neutrality advocates, President Obama has issued an unequivocal statement in support of net neutrality, calling on the Federal Communications Commission to reclassify broadband internet access under Title II of the Telecommunciations Act. […]


  69. says

    This is a followup to my comment #90. Yes, beneficiaries of the Affordable Care Act do have reason to worry:

    “Republicans should use reconciliation to fully repeal ObamaCare,” said Ken Cuccinelli, president of the Senate Conservatives Fund. “Voters know that nothing is a bigger threat to the budget and our economy than ObamaCare. Senator McConnell is on record saying that the law can be repealed with 51 votes and Republican voters expect him to keep his word.”

    Dan Holler, the communications director at Heritage Action, said “the most important” thing that Republicans could do in the majority would be to “use the reconciliation instructions to repeal ObamaCare.” […]


    […] Even if McConnell’s 51 senators pass a repeal under reconciliation, and the House passes it as well, there are “at least 27 points of order Republicans would need to change to clear the pathway for a reconciliation bill that would strip away ObamaCare.” Senate rules require 60 votes to change those points of order. McConnell would have to be really committed to full-on repeal in order to blow up the Senate to get around existing rules, and then would still face a presidential veto.

    But he’s going to have his crazy caucus—with ranks now buttressed by new senators Joni Ernst, Tom Cotton, Thom Tillis, and Corey Gardner—to contend with. He’s probably going to have new sympathy for House Speaker John Boehner now, and the Senate is going to be just as ridiculous as the House. The least productive Congress in history is about to get even worse.


  70. says

    Based on the belief that he had an obligation to give a fetus a chance for life, a judge in Washington, D.C., ordered a critically ill 27-year-old woman who was 26 weeks pregnant to undergo a cesarean section, which he understood might kill her. Neither the woman nor her baby survived. […]

    This article covers several examples of what women lost in terms of reproductive rights, both before and after the midterm elections. Some “fight back” strategies are discussed.

  71. says

    Followup to rq’s comment and link @#87, and mine @#96:

    Solutions? The authors suggest we ‘stop focusing on abortion and start working to protect the personhood of pregnant women.’ […]

    In Iowa, a pregnant woman who fell down a flight of stairs was reported to the police after seeking help at a hospital. She was arrested for “attempted fetal homicide.”
    In Utah, a woman gave birth to twins; one was stillborn. Health care providers believed that the stillbirth was the result of the woman’s decision to delay having a cesarean. She was arrested on charges of fetal homicide.

    In Louisiana, a woman who went to the hospital for unexplained vaginal bleeding was locked up for over a year on charges of second-degree murder before medical records revealed she had suffered a miscarriage at 11 to 15 weeks of pregnancy.

    Florida has had a number of such cases. In one, a woman was held prisoner at a hospital to prevent her from going home while she appeared to be experiencing a miscarriage. She was forced to undergo a cesarean. Neither the detention nor the surgery prevented the pregnancy loss, but they did keep this mother from caring for her two small children at home. While a state court later found the detention unlawful, the opinion suggested that if the hospital had taken her prisoner later in her pregnancy, its actions might have been permissible.

  72. Brony says

    Schadenfreude too good not to share. Via the comments at We Hunted the Mammoth (I really need to start commenting there, that place looks like fun).
    A gamergater tries to form an alliance with bitcoin advocates at r/Bitcoin. Things did not go according to plan (expand the comments for extra fun). I don’t think that a warning is necessary given what I see, but since it is Reddit caution is warranted.

  73. says

    Wow, too many good comments to pick a favorite there.
    I love the links to the gamergate operations wiki in the original post. The wiki has a long list of articles they don’t like and a boycott list of advertiser contacts. I think the wiki page is awesome; it’s a great list of great articles, a perfect 101 resource for anyone interested in the whole sad affair, and the contact list can be used to find and to urge the advertisers who folded to reinstate their ad buys. =P

  74. says

    Uh-oh, some research done at the University of Utah has been found to have fake results, based on fake data.

    An investigation has found faked research at a University of Utah chemical engineering lab.

    A graduate student doctored photos for a paper about microscopic structures called nanorods, making it appear as if a theory on how to change their position worked, said Jeffrey Botkin, the associate vice president for research integrity at the university.

    “There was no legitimate data in that paper,” Botkin said. […]

    The paper purported to show a method for bringing the ends of the nanorods together at an angle that could have had implications for creating synthetic antibodies.

    The paper published by the journal Nano Letters has already been retracted.

    A university investigation found doctoral candidate Rajasekhar Anumolu changed the images, which were the basis for all the findings in the paper published in June 2013, Botkin said. […]

    The investigation cleared Leonard Pease, the senior researcher on the paper whose theory the paper was testing. He’s the head of the lab that produced the paper, which was testing his theory, and reviewed the work before it was submitted for publication. There’s no evidence he was aware of or participated in the cheating, said Botkin. […]

    Salt Lake Tribune link.

    And, as always when a story about science is based in Utah, there are lots of doofuses dissing science in the comments:

    Hmm similar to all the climate change schlock for sure ….. Of course if my livelihood depended on some scientific Mumbo jumbo I would make sure I was towing the line and collecting the cash… Scientists aren’t above it… They are like coyotes to th carcass
    False Science… what a shocker. Not only can science be wrong, it is apparently intentionally misleading. Now lets talk about Global Cimate Cooling…. wait make that Global Climate Warming….. no wait, make that Global Climate Change, Ohh shoot, make that local ‘intense’ weather…..
    Brings to mind the falsification/tampering with climate data … which at one point perpetuated the man made climate change hoax. Obviously academia is not above reproach.
    I wonder if this was a foreign student or an American? I ask because if he took the place of an American grad student in the program and faked his research, we have been doubly defrauded.
    Faked “research” at taxpayer funded universities is actually the norm not the exception.

  75. says

    This is a followup to comment #94 about Net Neutrality.

    Net Neutrality” is Obamacare for the Internet; the Internet should not operate at the speed of government.

    That’s Ted Cruz disagreeing with President Obama’s plan to support Net Neutrality.

    Net neutrality puts gov’t in charge of determining pricing, terms of service, and what products can be delivered. Sound like Obamacare much?

    And that, my friends, is Amanda Carpenter, self-described “Communications Director for Ted Cruz. Proud DeMint alum.”

    Now it is even clearer which side of the issue is being supported by rightwing dunderheads.

  76. says

    Here’s a reader’s comment from the Talking Points Memo article in which Ted Cruz mouths off about Net Neutrality:

    There’s nothing the plutocrats would like more than to be able to use the intertubez to kill their small business competition, stifle innovation that might end up as competition and control what information is given the most prominence on the intertubez. As I said in the other thread: “If you can’t imagine a world in which giant corporations and political dark money groups actually pay providers to disallowing [sic] their competitors any bandwidth, then you’re not paying attention.”

    Cruz would like nothing more than to live in a world in which the Koch brothers and their ilk can offer Comcast $50B per year in exchange for Comcast’s promise that liberal groups would get blocked on their infrastructure. And let the bidding war begin…

  77. says

    Another comment associated with the Talking Points Memo article about Net Neutrality:

    Net Neutrality is the principle that corporate and big money websites shouldn’t be prioritized over everyone else’s, so of course he [Ted Cruz] is against it.

  78. says

    Here’s another juicy comment re Ted Cruz’s take on Net Neutrality:

    Offering faster speeds at tiered prices is just fine on the consumer side. To use a dated analogy, everyone should be able to control the speed of their own “on ramp”. The situation that net neutrality is intended to counter is when providers can pay more to control the speed of their content coming down your “onramp”. It’s predatory and monopolistic.

    Cruz’s position is such a prick position to take. It’s not even a conservative position, just a “anti-Obama” one.

  79. says

    Steve Benen’s masterful take on the Ted Cruz versus Net Neutrality discussion.

    […] Apparently, the right-wing senator believes we’ve reached the point at which comparing something – anything, really – to the Affordable Care Act is so damning that Americans should be reflexively repulsed.

    The fact that net neutrality is in no way similar to the ACA apparently is irrelevant. The fact that the Affordable Care Act is succeeding by every metric matters even less.

    Cruz’s problem has always been surprisingly simple: he’s not dumb, he thinks you’re dumb.

    But there’s larger pattern to all of this. Republicans are so preoccupied with their irrational disgust for the Affordable Care Act that they’ve become preoccupied with the “[Policy X] is the Obamacare of [Subject Matter Y].”

    Common core standards are “Obamacare for education.”

    Dodd/Frank financial-regulatory safeguards are “Obamacare for banks.”

    Efforts to reduce carbon pollution are “Obamacare for energy markets.” […]

  80. says

    I’d like to ask for some advice. I feel a little embarrassed doing so, being new here and all, but I’m a bit overwhelmed right now.
    Four weeks ago, I was attacked and robbed while sitting on the front steps of my home. The attackers stole my bag with some belongings, and broke my jaw and nose. At the moment my jaw is wired shut, and I’m staying home from work on extended leave.
    – I’m not asking for money, at all. Even if in the worst case I lose my leave pay, I think I can get that reimbursed by the state through the victim restitution program. My largest major monthly bill is my rent, and I rent from my sister, so she’s not going to kick me out if I get behind a month or so.
    – I’m having trouble getting enough calories. I’m on a liquid diet. If it doesn’t fit through a straw, I can’t eat it. I’m living off blended soup, blended mac and cheese, and banana/milk/egg smoothies, and I’ve lost about 5 pounds. I’m underweight to begin with and I spend most of the day feeing a bit shaky. Anyone have suggestions for ways to add calories?
    – The paperwork is overwhelming me. I have medical bills I don’t have the money for yet. I’ve applied for victim aid from the state and haven’t heard back yet. I have to send in restitution forms to the DA and respond to the court’s subpeona and I’m taking too long. The physicians at the hospital haven’t replied to my employer’s request for documentation, and the extended leave income is being jeopardized by that. I don’t have a primary care provider, and I have to find one and get examined in order to return to work.
    – I have mild general social anxiety issues, and this whole attack thing has made them worse. I have a therapist, but I haven’t seen him since the attack because mouth wired shut, and I’m experiencing completely irrational resistance to setting up my next appointment.
    – I’m basically avoiding taking the next steps for dealing with everything. I feel stuck. Encouragement and advice for getting unstuck would help. Thanks in advance everyone.

  81. Rob Grigjanis says

    Wilbefort @107: Have you tried adding peanut butter to your smoothies? Cream and butter are other possible additions to any blended meal.

  82. says

    Wilbefort, I have no advice, but big careful not-hurting hugs, if you’d like them.

    Akira, congrats on the weight loss and exercise! I’m a bit ‘rupt, so apologies if you’ve covered this, but are you doing any strength exercises? I’m having to start exercising too, and found this page the other day. I’m not in a position to do gym stuff either (even if I had the $$ I hate gyms) and this is gentle stuff aimed at older people, “gentle” rather than “older” being the important bit here. It looks like a good way to do strength training at home without any special equipment.

  83. Morgan!? Militant Pacifist, SJW says

    Doofus alert. I don’t understand how to make pretty links. Can someone please point me to a resource that explains how? Much gratitude.

  84. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I don’t understand how to make pretty links.

    I use BBCode Extra, a Firefox addon at home. I also do this at work:
    Link to html tags. would look like this: Link to <a href = “url of the link”>html tags</a>.
    which comes out looking like this:
    Link to html tags.

  85. Morgan!? Militant Pacifist, SJW says

    Nerd, thanks, but didn’t work. I use Firefox but it says BBCode Extra does not exist. Next?

  86. says

    I’m going to hit post even though the tags for the code don’t work in preview. Let’s see….

    * ** **** ** *

    Morgan, to do a link you need three things:
    1. This bit of code, which never changes:

    2. The URL for the webpage you want to link to, for example:
    3. The text you want to add the link to, for example:

    First, take the piece of code. Then your URL goes inside the quotes, and your text goes just before . Does that help?

  87. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Nerd, thanks, but didn’t work. I use Firefox but it says BBCode Extra does not exist. Next?

    Sorry, Looks like I misspelled the misspelling. BBCodeXtra
    Try here.

  88. Morgan!? Militant Pacifist, SJW says

    Thanks 2kittehs,
    Never knew about this tool. I should get curiouser… I think.

  89. Rowan vet-tech says

    Sooo… A couple weeks ago I sounded the idea of maybe doing a story on Bramble for the newsletter we send out. Somehow, in those 2 weeks, it morphed from “small thing in newsletter” to “You’re going to be on TV”…. D:

    And it’s less a story about Bramble, than about *me*… D: !!!!!

    Namely, about why I’m keeping her, what led me to do it, blah blah blah. Apparently it’s a little local thing this news channel (and it’s one of the larger ones) does to highlight people in the community doing good/helpful things. So I’m going to chatter about the ‘fospice’ program, and how we want these critters to have a good and happy life for however long they have. I’m going to be doing a phone interview with the reporter for 30 minutes tomorrow. O_O and one of the questions is basically ‘why are you doing this, why are you in this field?” And unfortunately my answer, while deeply and profoundly true, could also cause fatal eyerolls of cliche-ness. I *need* to help things, to protect them, to heal them. I *still* rescue worms from puddles, and rolypolies from the sidewalk. If it’s injured, I’m drawn to it with this *need* to make it better.

    Bramble is fundamentally broken, and because she’s broken and in my care, I have a fierce about her. I’ll let her go when it’s time, but until then … MINE, because she needs help. MINE.

    *runs away flailing at the idea of a camera crew trailing her around work*

  90. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    MINE, because she needs help. MINE.

    Hmm…The Redhead is fed, changed, and talking to a friend. Bedtime for Nerd, after a short night last night.

  91. Morgan!? Militant Pacifist, SJW says

    Nerd, you are an Exemplary Good Person. The Redhead is so lucky to have you.
    I propose a new acronym… EGP… there are a lot of them around these parts.

  92. says

    You’re welcome, Morgan! I didn’t find it myself, someone on WHTM told me about it. I run into a brick wall of wat when I look up techy stuff. :)

    Rowan, thirding Morgan and Anne.

  93. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Forgot to mention BP also checked, and evening OTC pills dosed.

    Question for the those with a medical background. The Redhead had high BP for years, but ever since the wounds became infected, her BP, without medication, has either been low, or at the present, normal. Does this make sense?

  94. Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate) says


    A rest well-earned, as usual.


    I’m glad other people see how excellent you are. ^_^ Sorry if it made you genuinely uncomfortable to be in the spotlight, but the recognition is very deserved. I hope it wasn’t too painful. :)

    Anne, and any other fellow-knitters:

    I realized maybe someone here can help me figure out if there’s a trick to the twisty-switchy thing in between the two colors of yarn in this pattern. The translation instructs to “change color at the middle of the floor so that the threads twist” but I don’t know if there’s more to it than that to make the neat line of knit stiches down the middle. Any thoughts are most appreciated.

  95. Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate) says


    Glad to hear you’re feeling better.
    Oh, what a relief that BiL found someone. That timeline takes a lot of burden or prospective burden off of you, yeah? So glad to hear that.

  96. chigau (違う) says

    I can’t even see the colour-change. (my eyes? my internet?)
    My first thought is to just switch to the other colour.
    You can tidy-up the loose ends at the finishing stage.

  97. Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate) says

    I think this photo might show it best. The colors are pretty similar. Thanks for the input, I’ll probably go that way :)

  98. Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate) says


    I have a tea called “Tension Tamer” – it’d go great with a cookie, thanks :)

  99. chigau (違う) says

    on another needle
    I have, sometimes,
    stripped out two strands from one colour (~30cm)
    two strands from the other colour (~30cm)
    carefully re-twisted them
    carefully knitted that segment
    Carried On.

  100. Portia (aka Smokey the Advocate) says

    I’m visualizing. You mean, sort of cabled just the two (four total) stitches of the different colors?

    Mmmm :)

    I’m packing my lunch for work tomorrow (trying to make it a habit…(new) habits are hard) It always becomes “Oh, yeah, I need to eat up that….and that…and that….before they go bad. Well, random combo lunch it is! yay!”

  101. chigau (違う) says

    let me try again
    (your pictured yarn doesn’t appear to have ‘ply’)

    My scenario
    if you have yarn with ply
    take your tiny scissors and snip out half the strands from one colour and
    half the strands from the other colour
    put the loose ends from one colour up against the uncut end of the other colour
    twist those orphans together so they make a whole strand (with blended colours)
    knit (carefully) past that weird segment

  102. rq says

    Unfortunately I’m only good for moral support.
    I hope you heal fast and complication-free, and that the paperwork becomes less overwhelming, taking it one piece at a time.
    Incidentally, is it possible to go to your therapist and write instead of speak? With someone else to make the appointment for you?
    Anyway, good luck and *hugs* if you accept them!

    Wow, I’d be annoyed as hell, too, but… that’s pretty cool! And cliches or not, helping wee helpless animals makes you a pretty awesome person, so I say enjoy as much as you can of the experience, and don’t hesitate to give the crew shit if they get in your way when you’re actually working. :)

  103. Brony says

    More complete greetings tomorrow. I wanted to get this for sure before bed.
    @ Wilbefort
    Don’t be embarrassed. Many of us got involved because life got overwhelming. We have a social brain. Peers and friends cheering, or prodding us on is a real thing that helps. If things are overwhelming often anxiety makes making any decision harder so it can be nice to get others to help with choices.
    I’ve battle a lot of anxiety myself despite my arguing around here.
    As for the calories, I hope that the advice that you have gotten so far is good. My brain only points out baby food (I am unsure of how many calories there) as a possibility. I worked some google-fu and found these,
    I’m sorry that the hospital is being difficult. Is there is system in place to notify the court that the hospital is holding things up? I hope they at least have a good excuse.
    Maybe your therapist would be willing to work with you over Skype or something. There are therapists that do that already and if you can’t talk they should be willing to be reasonable. You should talk to your therapist given what is going on right now.

    As for getting through it all. Make a list. A real one on paper (I only mention that because I’m in an ADHD support group and I hear that). Focus on the next thing you need to do in these areas and write them down one at a time, but maybe not too many. Focus on doing them one at a time. The important thing is consistent completion of something so that you can work on a sense of control and achievement.

  104. says

    Good morning

    *gentle hugs*
    to Wilbefort
    I don’t have much to add, most things have already been mentioned, like upping food with cream, butter, etc.
    I agree with what rq said: let somebody else make the appointment. As somebody with somewhat similar issues I learnt that it’s OK to rely on friends and family for the occasional boost. Even if you just feel too stressed out to call once you’re healed, ask somebody else to do it and tell the monkey brain (that’s my pet name for the part of my brain that keeps telling me horrible things and makes it difficult to get things done) to shut up.

  105. sawbones79 says

    Toska, Brony:
    Thanks for pointing those out to me. For some silly reason I´d gotten the impression that feminist frequency ran a one-off kickstarter, som I´m delighted to see that they still accept donations.

  106. bassmike says

    Wilbefort all I can offer is sympathy and vicarious support.

    Rowan good luck with your media exposure. Honesty is always best, even if you feel it’s cliched.

    Going back upthread a way: I know a few people who have all the symptoms of narcissistic personality disorder. Also, I find the description of impostor syndrome rather to close to home for my liking.

    My wife has been sick for a few days now. We’re hopeful it’s simply food poisoning and will pass quickly. If it’s a bug and my daughter and I get it too, thing could get messy!

    just dropping off a wheelbarrow full of decontaminated hugs for anyone who wants them.

  107. opposablethumbs says

    Wilbefort, I’m very sorry you’re enduring such a horrible situation. I hope some of the things the Horders have said upthread are helpful.
    Might protein shakes/drinks meant for athletes be any good? Don’t athletes get very high-calorie drinks they can take e.g. during a triathlon (no, I have never done this) so as to replenish energy with no risk of stomach cramps while running etc. … might be worth looking into, and there are definitely some athletic Horders who might know though I don’t know if any of them are around the Lounge.

    Rowan, I think it’s great that you get the chance to say a few words about this. I hope it’s not too excruciating doing it, but it’s wonderful that more people will get to hear about it and maybe some will want to offer some support. Also you are totally a star :-)

  108. birgerjohansson says

    “The cat’s meow: Genome reveals clues to domestication” “Cats, unlike dogs, are really only semidomesticated”. Meh. Every cat owner knows that.
    “Cats also have better hearing than most other carnivores, including an ability to hear in the ultrasonic range to better track prey. Their vision is also exceptional in low light.
    “Cats tend to be more active at dawn and dusk,” said Montague, “so they need to be able to detect movement in low light.” Accordingly, the team identified specific genes that likely evolved to expand cats’ hearing range and their vision in low light.”

  109. birgerjohansson says

    So this is what those land sharks of SNL were homing in to?
    “Odor that smells like blood: Single component powerful trigger for large carnivores”
    Linköping University in Sweden wanted to find out which substances of blood trigger behavioural reactions.
    — — —
    Assyria then, South California today. Too many people, not enough water: Now and 2,700 years ago
    — — —
    Molecular breakthrough could halt the spread of prostate cancer
    — — —
    Study shows marijuana’s long-term effects on the brain

  110. says


    I’ve only done one piece where there were different yarns going vertically, and I just twisted them together at each change on the row. I doubt that’s an approved method, I was making it up as I went along, as usual. However it hasn’t fallen apart yet after plenty of wear! :P

  111. rq says

    What an interesting piece of history, and I believe sexism may have been involved: although there were more mixed choirs and many women’s choirs at the time, the first Estonian song festival was open only to men’s choirs and brass bands (presumably populated only by men) in order to maintain ‘a moral atmosphere’. Heh. I mean, you know what happens when you get a bunch of choristers together in one large public location, eh? *nudgnudgewinkwink*

  112. opposablethumbs says

    Headteacher apparently abused by parents (who had been geed up by SPUC – lovely to see them encouraging homophobia while still sticking to their core mission of bullying and attacking women trying to access reproductive healthcare) for implementing a national anti-homophobic-bullying initiative.
    Of course there are a lot of people who think telling kids about facts – that homosexual people exist and form families just like heterosexual people do – and encouraging them to be tolerant and question bigotry is tantamount to pushing them to engage in same-sex sexual activity.

  113. rq says

    Ooooh, opposablethumbs, that’s terrible!
    But you remind me of an opinion piece that I read today from a local entertainment celebrity, about how all the sickos should resign from Parliament – that is, all the gays. Because, as he said, everyone knows the gays are all about having fun all the time, and are incapable of doing any real work. He was specifically thinking of the Foreign Minister, who recently came out, and is currently on a business trip to represent national interests to the EU. Yes, he’s all about that play, is Mr Rinkevics!
    Also, apparently being openly gay in Latvia is ruining the author’s traditional family and all their values. Didn’t know that, I guess I should go ahead and be offended right now?

  114. rq says

    Also, opposablethumbs, considering the actions of those parents, I would say they’re unfit to teach their own children about bullying. But that’s just my opinion.

  115. birgerjohansson says

    I don’t know about inclusive/intersectional, but these have an element of the surreal;
    Stanislaw Lem’s “The Investigation”
    the Strugatsky’s Philip-K-Dick-esque “Definitely Maybe”
    Algis Budrys´”Rogue Moon”
    J G Ballard´s “The Voices of Time”
    Much material to inspire a film poster…

  116. birgerjohansson says

    “Cancer-killing nanodaisies”
    Tiny drug carriers -nanocarriers called “nanodaisies” are used to kill cancer.
    See video:
    Excerpt: The nanocarriers are made from a polymer called polyethylene glycol (PEG), to which researchers attach the cancer-killing drug camptothecin (CPT) like bunches of grapes on a vine. A second drug, doxorubicin, also floats in solution around the PEG.

    Both drugs are hydrophobic, meaning they dislike water and shy away from it. PEG, though, is hydrophilic: When exposed to water it stretches out to maximize contact, while the T-shaped joints that hold the CPT tug in the opposite direction and fold inward. The anti-cancer drugs thus end up tucked into a protective shell of PEG. The resulting nanocarrier is shaped like a flower—hence the term “nanodaisy.”

    Once folded, the nanodaisies are then injected into the bloodstream and absorbed by unwitting cancer cells, which are porous enough to let them in. The nanodaisies’ outer shells of PEG protect their payload of drugs and keep them from prematurely leaking.
    The design of the nanodaisy also ensures that the two cancer drugs release at complementary speeds as their carrier comes apart inside the cancer cell. Each drug inhibits different enzymes in the cell, and they work in tandem to prevent or delay the development of drug resistance.

  117. birgerjohansson says

    From Mano Singham:
    “Everything you think you know about the news is probably wrong”
    This link with some basic statistics suggests that much of our gut feelings about important statistics may be wildly off, strongly influenced by the amount of attention the subject gets in the news media.
    The Ipsos MORI market research firm polled people in 14 countries in the developed world on a range of issues, asking them to estimate things in their own country like the rate of teen pregnancies, percentage of the population who are Muslim or Christian, percentage of immigrants, voting rates in the last major election, unemployment rates, and life expectancy. People tended to wildly overestimate figures if those items figured in political controversies, like the number of Muslims or immigrants or unemployed or teen pregnancies.

    Based on the results, they ranked countries in order of ignorance. Italy was the worst, followed by the US, South Korea, Poland, Hungary, France, Canada, Belgium, Australia, Great Britain, Spain, Japan, Germany, and Sweden.”

    (Notes position of Sweden. Does happy dance!)

  118. birgerjohansson says

    READ: J. Edgar Hoover’s wretched attempt to destroy Martin Luther King in a letter “Gage tells us that portions of the letter have been in the public domain for many years, but this is the first time that the entire, uncensored letter has been released.”
    — — —
    I am shocked, shocked, I tell you, to learn that an American chief of police has engaged in unethical behaviour! (sarcasm)

  119. Brony says

    @ Nerd of Redhead 130

    The Redhead had high BP for years, but ever since the wounds became infected, her BP, without medication, has either been low, or at the present, normal. Does this make sense?

    I’m pretty good at finding answers to questions, though I am an educated amateur at best anything I mention should be run by a professional.
    Causes of low blood pressure.
    As for things directly connecting infection and BP,
    Sepsis causes low blood pressure. I tried to look up chronic infections and many of those seem to also cause high blood pressure. This one is worth talking to your doctor about.

  120. says

    Several midterm contests have not yet been settled. There are recounts, provisional ballots being counted by hand, etc. In one of these races the Republican candidate is trying to stop the counting of ballots in Democratic-leaning precincts. Yeah, another skew-the-vote tactic from the rightwing.

    Some of the provisional ballots wouldn’t be provisional if rightwingers hadn’t passed voter-restriction laws that forced some voters to cast provisional ballots.

    A judge in Arizona’s Pima County Superior Court denied a push by Republican congressional candidate Martha McSally’s campaign to stop the ballot counting in Democratic-leaning precincts of Pima County, according to Tucson Weekly.

    McSally is in a tight race against Rep. Ron Barber (D-AZ). Her campaign had moved to stop the counting of provisional ballots through a temporary restraining order in Pima County Superior Court.[…]

    McSally currently leads Barber by a tiny 341 votes in the race for Arizona’s 2nd Congressional District.

    Officials estimate that there are 9,300 provisional ballots that have not yet been counted in the race, according to Tucson Weekly.[…]

    As TPM has previously noted, Pima County is 35 percent Hispanic and five of the Pima County precincts in question went for President Barack Obama over Mitt Romney in 2012. […]

    At least the Judge refused the request to stop counting ballots this time.

    Talking Points Memo link.

  121. says

    Letter from a Canadian to USA citizens in general:

    Many of us Canadians are confused by the U.S. midterm elections. Consider, right now in America, corporate profits are at record highs, the country’s adding 200,000 jobs per month, unemployment is below 6%, U.S. gross national product growth is the best of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries. The dollar is at its strongest levels in years, the stock market is near record highs, gasoline prices are falling, there’s no inflation, interest rates are the lowest in 30 years, U.S. oil imports are declining, U.S. oil production is rapidly increasing, the deficit is rapidly declining, and the wealthy are still making astonishing amounts of money.

    America is leading the world once again and respected internationally — in sharp contrast to the Bush years. Obama brought soldiers home from Iraq and killed Osama bin Laden.

    So, Americans vote for the party that got you into the mess that Obama just dug you out of? This defies reason.

    When you are done with Obama, could you send him our way?

    Richard Brunt

    Victoria, British Columbia

    Daily Kos link.

  122. says

    There may be more reasons than Death With Dignity laws to move to Oregon. Oregon doesn’t fit into the Republican-sweep-of-the-midterms category.

    Oregon Democrats, especially in the Senate, virtually ran the table Tuesday night, clearing the way for an ambitious agenda heavy on environmental and income-equality issues in the 2015 legislative session.[…]

    Democrats expanded their majority in the Oregon state Senate to 18-12. They have a 35 to 25 majority in the Oregon state house.

    Oregon voters put a Democratic candidate in the governor’s seat, and they legalized marijuana.

  123. says

    Republicans remain firmly in the anti-science category:

    Nothing is easier, if you’re a political philistine playing to an audience of anti-intellectual rubes, than to ridicule scientific research projects by caricature.

    Rep. Lamar Smith, R-Texas, who frighteningly enough is chairman of the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology, appears bent on polishing this methodology to a lustrous glow. As detailed in a thoroughly unnerving report by Science’s Jeff Mervis, Smith has his staffers compiling a spreadsheet of National Science Foundation grants vulnerable to being lampooned as, in Mervis’ words, “silly, obvious, or of low priority to society.”

    So, if Republicans are saying “I am not a scientist” with boring regularity, what makes them qualified to decide what NSF grants are “silly”?
    LA Times link.

  124. cicely says

    A Typeface Designed to Help Dyslexics Read

    *hugs or other appropriate-and-non-intrusive gestures of sympathy and support* for Wilbefort. Have you tried protein shakes? I don’t know what they cost, but I know they’re available at Walmart, and I assume also at Grocery Stores Everywhere.

    Rowan, I hope you will weather the Publicity Storm and emerge unscathed.

    And Nerd continues to be Awesome.


    How to watch someone’s plant while they’re away.


  125. says

    With no congressionally imposed travel bans, with no more isolation tents being set up in New Jersey, and with no more action being taken to close the border with Mexico, the USA is currently Ebola-free.

    This is a big accomplishment, and it is one that Republicans are ignoring. Some of them used ridiculous Ebola-scare tactics to win their midterm campaigns. Those asshats are remarkably silent about the USA’s success in treating and containing Ebola here.

  126. says

    Oh Arizona voters, cheezits, this is really stupid.

    Arizona has approved a ballot measure designed to push back against the federal government […]

    The measure will change the state Constitution to allow either the Legislature or the voters to declare unconstitutional any federal mandate, then block state or local resources from being used to enforce or administer those laws.

    Arizona Republican leaders […] touted it as a solution to federal health-care mandates, children dying under the watch of the state’s child-protection agency and Environmental Protection Agency regulations harming farmers and ranchers.

    Supporters included several influential political figures linked to conservative billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch and the American Legislative Exchange Council […]

    Arizona Central link.

  127. says

    Chris Hayes interviewed Matt Taibbi and Alayne Fleischmann. We’ve had so much discussion on the J.P. Morgan settlement, and on the witness (Alayne) who has come forward with more damning evidence, that I thought some Pharngulites might want to watch this segment. Link.

    And for those who didn’t get it before, here is the Rolling Stone link to Matt Taibbi’s article.

  128. says

    In one of these races the Republican candidate is trying to stop the counting of ballots in Democratic-leaning precincts.

    Maybe it’s time for the Republicans to just admit that they’re against democracy. Instead of gerrymandering and lawsuits, they should just come out with a proposal to eliminate elections altogether.

    We all know that’s what they really want. The only surprise would be that they were willing to admit it.

  129. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    – I’m having trouble getting enough calories. I’m on a liquid diet. If it doesn’t fit through a straw, I can’t eat it. I’m living off blended soup, blended mac and cheese, and banana/milk/egg smoothies, and I’ve lost about 5 pounds. I’m underweight to begin with and I spend most of the day feeing a bit shaky. Anyone have suggestions for ways to add calories?


    Also, sweetened condensed milk is like 2000 calories per 10oz can.

  130. says

    Thanks everyone. (wraps up in hugs and curls up on virtual support). I’ve got an appointment with my therapist next week, and the leave management company finally got my leave approved. So I’m feeling a little better.
    Still hungry though. Thanks for all of the suggestions. I need to go shopping.

  131. says

    If you’re concerned about eminent domain overreach and in gentrification’s negative effects, read about a case in Philly right now here:

    James Dupree is a world-renowned artist and native son of Philadelphia, who is about to see his art studio turned into a grocery store, thanks to the rubber-stamp review that passes for judging when his city exercises the power of eminent domain.

    James’ artistic accomplishments are truly awesome. He has five paintings in the permanent collection of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Others can be found in the National Museum of Art in Cardiff, Wales; the Schomberg Museum in New York; the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts; and the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.

    You can see the Philadelphia Museum of Art from James’ studio. It is located in the Mantua neighborhood of West Philadelphia, where James grew up. The studio was a dilapidated warehouse when he purchased it for a little under $200,000. He spent $60,000 installing new electrical equipment and plumbing, $68,000 on roof repairs, and thousands more on renovations, furnishings and appliances.

    There is a petition on to have the city return the deed to him here:

  132. says

    Another doctor visit today.

    Good news: I’m getting better. Also, I have the heart of an 18 year old, and he’s not getting it back.

    Bad news: bad scary results from blood tests. New consult scheduled. More tests coming. Biopsy. Knives. Chaos, doom, destruction.

  133. Esteleth is Groot says

    Oh dear. Best of luck, PZ. I hope those tests and consults go well and you get good news.

    Reminder, everyone! As JAL said here, she’s facing a bit of a funds crisis at the moment. I am collecting funds to be funneled to her. Contributions can be made to the PayPal account linked to my nym at the google mail service. If this is unacceptable, you can email me at that address and we can figure something else out.

  134. says

    I’ve commented a lot recently about the new series of essays from mormon leaders, essays that, (with some spin and obfuscation), admit to much of the LDS church’s sordid (read “factual”) history.

    They threw Brigham Young under the bus by laying the blame for mormon racism at his feet; they admitted that the mormon Book of Abraham is not an exact translation from an Egyptian scroll, etc. They even issued a video showing and supposedly explaining the sacred garmies [underwear] and temple clothes.

    Of all the essays, the one addressing the polygamy, polyandry, adultery etc. of Joseph Smith is the one the mainstream media has picked up. This essay, which mormon leaders commissioned and then artfully hid on their website so that it was hard to find, has been exposed to the light of day. Lots (most) TBMs (True Believing Mormons) did not know about Joe’s sexual exploits. If they did know some of the story, they excused the polygamy as “spiritual marriage.” Now it’s all out there, about 40 wives, the marrying of women who were already married, the grooming and seduction of pre-pubescent girls.

    Here’s one of the better mainstream media articles: Washington Post link.

    Some of the more notable acknowledgements in the essay include the detail that Smith “was sealed to a number of women who were already married,” which the church speculates may have been a way to strengthen bonds between early Mormon families. [Cough! Bullshit! Smith sent the husbands away on missions for the church and then helped himself to the wives.] Helen Mar Kimball married Smith before she turned 15 (however, most of his wives were between the ages of 20 and 40 when they married Smith). [There were nine teenagers.]

    The story made the front page of The New York Times.

    Coverage in Slate.

    a statue of Smith gazing into the eyes of Emma, his first wife, that stands in the Temple Square in Salt Lake City—drives home how much the other 30-plus women in Smith’s life—including one who was just 14, and some who were still married to other men—have largely been ignored.

  135. rq says

    Yay for your heart but boo for the blood tests… I hope it’s nothing that can’t be easily fixed!! Best of luck.

  136. says

    Bad news: bad scary results from blood tests. New consult scheduled. More tests coming. Biopsy. Knives. Chaos, doom, destruction.

    Damn. Sorry to hear about the bad new coming swiftly after some good news, PZ.

    On the other hand, somebody has to keep the healthcare system in the USA afloat. I heard they have a cash flow problem that is affecting their ability to buy yachts, real estate, Harleys and other necessities. One of my doctors needs a grand piano. I am doing what I can.

  137. says

    Tentacles crossed that your health woes resolve-positively-asap.


    Wilbefort @107:
    I’m so sorry for what you went through (and are currently going through). I hope the advice of others has proven helpful.

  138. Tethys says

    Damn PZ, hopefully the scary blood work is due to the infection and not other, more dire conditions. Great news that the heart is in excellent condition. I will suggest that if your urologist has not already got you drinking cranberry juice, you start doing so. It is very helpful to many of the maladies that can occur in a urogenital tract, especially if one is having difficulty completely emptying their bladder. (disclaimer…it only helps relieve the painful urination, and possibly help prevent a UTI from developing on top of the prostrate infection, though that effect seem stronger in women than in men.) YMMV, but it may help and couldn’t hurt. Glad that you are feeling a little better in any case.

  139. says

    How the hell is this NOT mocking the catcalling video?

    It wasn’t a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, but recently, right here in the streets of New York City that Princess Leia silently walked the streets for ten hours and recorded every catcall, every “Hey Princess….”, every attempt to introduce her to an “aid” named Lobot that was flung at her.

    It’s the latest parody of the Hollaback! PSA, which captured the experience of a woman walking the streets of NYC and getting catcalled to raise awareness about street harassment. The spoof manages to be fun to watch without making too light of the original video’s serious message.

    As Leia drifted down the street wearing a conservative ankle-length, turtleneck white tunic and simple ear buns, she was called after by everyone from Darth Vader to creepy hooded Jawas to supposed good guy Luke Skywalker and even Boba Fett, who just walked silently along side her for several minutes. While obviously noted sleaze-ball Lando Calrissian hollered at his girl, even Jedi Master Yoda couldn’t help but shout-out to the princess who was just trying to mind her own business (and probably save Alderaan).

  140. says

    Here’s some good gaming news:
    BioWare Designs Custom Mass Effect Level To Help Woman Propose To Her Partner

    Jackie and Amy are both huge Mass Effect fans, so when Jackie decided she wanted to propose to her partner, she contacted the Montréal studio for their help. Jackie wanted to be able to propose to Amy in-game, so studio manager Marie-Renée Brisebois sent out an immediate call to developers for help with the project.

    After assembling a writer, level designer, and QA analyst – who all worked on the project free of charge – the team created a brand-new Mass Effect level. They made realistically difficult while also making it impossible for Amy’s character to die (so she wouldn’t have to start over), and also included some references to Jackie and Amy’s relationship (while still keeping it subtle enough that Amy wouldn’t be tipped off).

    Brisebois sent Jackie and Amy a letter, saying that they had won a contest called “A Day with Our Devs” at PAX East, and that they were invited to tour the Montréal studio and test out Mass Effect 4. Here’s how the adorableness went down:

    Once she reached the end of the level, Amy walked into a room with a lone console in the center that had her and Jackie’s names for one another spray-painted on the wall in 50-foot high graffiti. When she clicked on the console, a message popped up: “Dear Amy, Jackie would like to ask you something.


    All of us at BioWare”

    Jackie then got down on one knee, took out a ring, and proposed.

    Amy said yes.

    Here, I’ve got a box of tissues for anyone who needs one.

  141. carlie says

    PZ – worried for you also, sending good thoughts your way. We can’t change the results, but we can let you know that we all care and are hoping for the best.