Re: Ah, Mommy-pants

1

You know, I primarily post so that you all will entertain me with your comments. I'm grading here. Where's my entertaining comments?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 8:30 AM
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That's funny. I helped my mom set up a blog for work recently. She was sort of adorably eye-rolly at times ("I KNOW how to upload a video to youtube. But can you help me download this URL?").

Yes, Mom. I'm downloading that URL right now. Keep uploading to youtube.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 8:33 AM
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3

1: There's one!


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 8:33 AM
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4

We've got a couple professors who always, always
1) reply to all (but lots of people do this)
2) put their response at the bottom of their e-mail instead of the top, so you're like, "Why did Old Fogey send a blank e-mail?" [scroll, scroll, scroll] "Oh."


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 8:36 AM
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5

4.2: You better hope Old Man Apo doesn't see that part of your comment.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 8:38 AM
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4: You're obviously not from the Usenet era.


Posted by: paranoid android | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 8:40 AM
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7

Old Fogeys generally don't get that you're talking about them, so I should be okay.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 8:40 AM
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6: That is true. You had to scroll to the bottom every dang time? How Old Fogey '09.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 8:44 AM
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9

I'm pretty sure the primary reason your mom is confused about texting is that there aren't any links she can doubleclick.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 8:44 AM
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10

The thing that makes it really hard to write out the instructions is that you don't know the way they typically navigate the phone. Like, do they scroll through a menu and press enter? Or press the number on the keypad for their choice directly? Etc.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 8:51 AM
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11

STOP DOUBLE-CLICKING ON EVERYTHING, MOM!


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 8:51 AM
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12

An iPhone is clearly the answer.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 8:53 AM
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11: Can you text that same message to my mom too? Maybe she'll listen to an outsider.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 8:54 AM
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14

my 'theory' is the people with alive parents are not full adults yet
later in life they become parents/guardians to their aging parents, so blessed they are, but until then they are still like kids and have that secure feeling of being secure in the world


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 8:54 AM
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15

serenity now.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 8:56 AM
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16

you are not a fully functioning adult yet, MM, by my criteria


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:01 AM
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17

See, M/tch, you can't possibly know what it will be like to be an adult until you are one.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:03 AM
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18

b/c you didn't experience the full range of possible human suffering of losing someone who gave you life
other types of suffering is kinda feels less, only losing one's child is perhaps of the same intensity


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:04 AM
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16: Oh noes! How crushing not to be adjudged an adult by so discerning a person as you!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:05 AM
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20

And burying one's parents is the true hallmark of maturity.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:06 AM
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21

19
see, like a baby


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:07 AM
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22

My mom's developed an abiding gadget love pretty much as soon as I moved out of her house. Her strategy is to buy ever-more-elaborate pieces of technology, then utterly fail to learn how they work. Sure mom, let me come on over and program that touchscreen remote for you, again. Oh, and you wanted to put that DVD you rented on your phone, did you? Great. Right after I show you how to set up Wii Fit one more time, and get the bluetooth synced in your car.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:08 AM
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23

Hey read? You don't actually know what sorts of human suffering I've experienced, so how about you shut the fuck up?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:08 AM
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24

23 another example of immaturity


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:08 AM
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25

24 to 24.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:09 AM
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26

So teach me, oh wise read. How does one achieve your stunning level of maturity? And does losing a parent still count if that parent had life insurance?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:10 AM
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27

there is 23 in 24, so 25 is not making sense


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:10 AM
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28

What if you leave your parent in the backseat of your car on a hot day?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:11 AM
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29

27: It's probably because apostropher is so immature.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:11 AM
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30

Well, actually the full range of possible human suffering is eating one's child. If you haven't had that, you're not really an adult.


Posted by: Unpronounceable Awl | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:11 AM
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31

KILL YOUR PARENTS


Posted by: OPINIONATED PARTIAL HUMAN | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:12 AM
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32

if one accepts the life insurance benefits provided by one's parent's death it's perverse and degenerate


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:13 AM
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33

22: OMG Sifu and I have the same mom!


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:13 AM
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34

30: What about eating your child's tongue but replacing it with yourself? That sounds pretty intense.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:13 AM
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35

Sifu and Oudie dine on the same meal!


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:14 AM
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36

Those who don't want to be perverse and degenerate can mail their parents' life insurance payouts to me.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:14 AM
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37

34: That's just disgusting and degenerate, M/tch. Really, I'm surprised at you.


Posted by: Unpronounceable Awl | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:15 AM
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38

nda, so very childish responses and i should know of course better
i meant i don't understand people complaining about their parents


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:15 AM
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39

I don't see how people can possibly complain about how gross Hot Pockets are unless they've barely evaded death by starvation.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:16 AM
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40

38: It's not really complaining. It's a loveable sort of goofiness that many people's parents demonstrate reliably.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:16 AM
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41

I think 32 is absolutely correct. In fact, I think inheriting anything from one's parents after their death is perverse and likely creates an incentive for murder, at least here in the US where we're so degenerate.

The safest thing is probably to make sure that ones' parents live in utmost poverty; that way there's little temptation to kill them for their money. I'm pretty sure Sifu and oudemia are plotting the demise of their mother right this moment, so they can get their twisted paws on all her shiny new gadgets.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:18 AM
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42

See, read means that by complaining about my mom, I don't fully value her and appreciate her, the way I will when she dies. Merely having her diagnosed with terminal cancer and watching her go through treatment has not taught me anything. Furthermore, all those times before she got sick when I hugged her and said "I love you, Mommy-pants!" were totally immature and not really getting it, either, because I think she does funny stuff sometimes.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:19 AM
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43

i meant i don't understand people complaining about their parents

Then how about starting off by asking a question about that, instead of immediately accusing people of immaturity?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:20 AM
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44

Reading 14, it doesn't seem to be accusing anyone of immaturity.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:21 AM
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45

44: Huh. What does "not full adults yet" mean then?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:23 AM
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46

42: Girl, you'll be a woman soon.


Posted by: Neil Diamond | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:23 AM
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47

44: I mean, perhaps I'm wrong and she didn't start until comment 16. I'm not sure I see how that makes a difference?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:24 AM
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48

re: 45

You can only read that as accusation of immaturity if you're being pretty thin-skinned about it. Saying that 'you aren't fully an adult until life-event-X happens' is a pretty common-place observation that people make all the time.

Where X is , "had your first child", "left home", "buried a parent", or any number of other things. Taking that sort of world view isn't accusing anyone of immaturity, except in the most innocuous possible way.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:26 AM
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49

40 people never can tell when i'm kidding, thanks for explaining of course
but MM is a kid who seems suffered a lot i'm curious what sufferings
the sufferings concerning one's self is not that very painfully sufferable, any physical, moral, emotional pain concerning just the self-person
if there is a story about a child with cancer for example i empathise more with his/her parents, not with the child


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:27 AM
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50

48: All those common statements are condescending. "You don't really get it until you have a kid" is an obnoxious thing to say.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:29 AM
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51

Although maybe read will understand once she has a baby.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:29 AM
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52

re: 50

Sure, those things can be really annoying, but that's not how 14 read to me.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:32 AM
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53

52: You don't have a kid, either, do you.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:32 AM
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54

48: Said in a general way, sure. In this specific context of a post by heebie about her mother, I disagree with you, and think read's comment is pretty pointed.

Of course, while I didn't like what read implied about heebie, I didn't actually respond to read until she directly accused me of being a "not fully functioning adult" in 16.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:33 AM
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55

Anyway, Sifu, I think that you should help mom set up the fucking Time Capsule she just bought.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:34 AM
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56

55: What's to set up? Dig a hole. Done.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:35 AM
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57

You're not an adult until an isopod has replaced your tongue with itself.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:35 AM
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58

re: 54

Again, I think that's a pretty harsh reading of 14. I've had pretty similar conversations with friends, where people have said more or less exactly the same thing.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:37 AM
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59

feel,
51 yeah, i've noticed that too, my sisters for example became so very lax with a lot of going in their lives once they had babies as if they realized that there are like more important things then some petty issues to worry about
i thought the intense physical pain (and it's the only exception of the physical pain concerning oneself, coz it concerns another being too) they've experienced allowed them to realize that, i will never know hopefully that coz don't want to, it's like too much pain to cause to the other


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:39 AM
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60

than
people have said more or less exactly the same thing.
:(, i thought it was my like original thought, but whatever
MM is a secretive kid


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:42 AM
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61

I could buy that it's read's brand of humour even in 16, but 18 is the one that makes it difficult, because of too much alternation.
Like:
14 is just throwing something out there, a random 'theory' that occurred to her.
16 is a joke playing on the thought.
But then 18 continues as though there were no joke!
and 21 takes the joke to a completely earnest level!
(Aaah things are escalating) 24! 32! 38!
And then 49 is like, 'oh, who, me? Yeah, I was kinda kidding all along.'
Ambiguity!


Posted by: Unpronounceable Awl | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:42 AM
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58: I think the word "friends" is pretty key in your sentence, as opposed to "acquaintance who regularly condescends in an obnoxious way".

But anyway, I'd similarly mock anyone here who made the same assertions as read has in this thread.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:42 AM
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54: Really? Even though in the very anecdote I mention feeling panicked that something might have happened to Mom, ever since she got sick? Until Mom actually dies I still have that "secure feeling of being secure in the world"?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:42 AM
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64

63: You're just being thin-skinned, heebie.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:45 AM
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65

It doesn't read to me like it was about _you_. It's a general observation. Perhaps I'm wrong, and it was a deliberately cruel thing to say, rather than just someone making a general comment about parents and adult children _in a thread where people are talking about their parents_, but it just doesn't come over that way to me.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:45 AM
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66

65: Not necessarily "deliberately cruel". "Obnoxiously insensitive" works just as well.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:47 AM
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67

It's a general observation.

Which, when applied to heebie's specific situation, the subject of the post, means . . . .


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:48 AM
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68

okay, HbGb is a responsible adult, doubly so, my apologies
but why do you that want to be an adult, i'd prefer to be blissfully infantile forever if it was possible


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:50 AM
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re: 66

Well, as I said, we disagree. It doesn't seem obnoxious to me. However, there's not really much of a debate to be had since it's one of those subjective things that's immune to refutation on either side.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:50 AM
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70

69: Seriously, if your parent were battling cancer and someone told you "you're not a full adult yet since he/she is still alilve. You're still like a kid and have that secure feeling of being secure in the world", you wouldn't take that at all amiss?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:55 AM
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To be earnest, I don't think being an adult is a result of painful experiences so much as the result of thoughtful reflection, and living according to your values. While losing one's parents may trigger thoughtful reflection and therefore is often a period of growth, I think many of the people here are already sufficiently thoughtful.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:55 AM
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I thought it was obnoxious and insensitive. There's plenty of other crap that can happen to people (and *asking* them outright what that might be is pretty rude too) to turn them into a grown-up.

Having a baby isn't a foolprood method of ensuring someone grows up. And if you do feel more like an adult once you've had a child, it's got nothing to do with the pain of labour, that's a crazy theory. For one - erm, fathers???? For two - it doesn't have to hurt that much.


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:55 AM
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73

Re: 70, I'm beginning to suspect that the Scottish are hopelessly perverse and degenerate. First they kick flaming crime suspects in the balls, and now this?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:56 AM
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74

55: hah! Eerie.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:58 AM
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75

74: You're going to bury the time capsule in a lake?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:58 AM
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76

And I don't think you have to suffer to become an adult either. There are myriad ways of getting there. And seriously, blissful infantilism hasn 't appealed to me for a long time.


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:58 AM
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77

It's impossible to really understand adulthood until you've helped your mom set up automated backups.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:58 AM
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78

re: 70

As I already, it doesn't read to me like it was directed at heebie. Mildly insensitive, in context, maybe. I think we just have a clash of perspectives. Does read even KNOW that heebie's mum has cancer? I didn't.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:59 AM
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79

deliberately cruel, obnoxiously insensitive
a very romantic person the young MM, likes always exaggerrated phrases
i would so love to read a literary account of his sorrows, but he won't indulge me it seems
i did not know about HbGb's mom's illness, i'm very sorry, i understand you've taken my 'observation' too personally, it was not about you, it is all about me


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:59 AM
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80

77: I recommend an epidural for that.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:00 AM
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81

read, M/tch is like 70 years old.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:01 AM
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82

i did not know about HbGb's mom's illness, i'm very sorry, i understand you've taken my 'observation' too personally, it was not about you, it is all about me

I appreciate this.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:02 AM
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83

81: But I'm a spry 70!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:04 AM
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84

DIDN'T YOU IDIOTS EVEN READ ME? WHAT PART OF "Now, I get a bit of a panic response since Mom got sick, anytime there seems to be urgency to returning a call." IS THAT HARD TO FIGURE OUT?


Posted by: OPINIONATED ORIGINAL POST | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:06 AM
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85

READ ME!


Posted by: OPINIONATED FUCKING ARCHIVES | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:07 AM
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86

re: 85

Oh fuck off.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:10 AM
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87

Glad read's first comment wasn't directed at Heebie. But many of her subsequent comments have been personal insults, based on no facts that I've ever gleaned from reading Unfogged.

read, I don't like how you've acted in this thread. I have no authority here, but I personally wish you wouldn't do this. It makes me sad and angry to see someone attack people I like and respect, especially based on the attacker's mis-perceptions.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:12 AM
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88

i totally skipped that part, ADD, i know
i thought she's a dutiful daughter who pulls off whenever her mom calls (approvingly), but feels an urge to complain a little (read disapprovingly, coz that should be generally a blessing) afterwards coz her capricious mom calls her about trifles
nothing to do with real HbGb and her mom
i read blog posts as if i read some fiction fyi that's why the misunderstandings
thanks , ttaM, you are a knight :)


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:15 AM
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89

well, well, Megan, please don't censor me
i know what and when to say and to what reactions without anyone telling me how


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:18 AM
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90

Off to go jogging.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:19 AM
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91

i read blog posts as if i read some fiction fyi that's why the misunderstandings

Oh this will end well.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:20 AM
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91: Dude, at least give us a "SPOILER ALERT" warning before you go revealing the ending like that!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:21 AM
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93

90 is very in character for heebie.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:22 AM
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94

89- Megan wasn't censoring you, she was expressing unhappiness with your behavior. She did this in a way that is very similar to your various expressions of unhappiness with others' behavior (e.g. complaining about their parents, making degenerate jokes, trying to censor you), only more honestly and politely phrased.


Posted by: Cecily | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:22 AM
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95

This story has a chorus!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:24 AM
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96

89 to 94
and no more lectures, please!!


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:24 AM
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97

It's the constant shit-stirring that really annoys me about read. She's just a troll these days, and I don't know what her purpose in coming here is, other than to bait M/tch.


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:25 AM
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98

94 to 96! It's a fugue!


Posted by: Cecily | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:25 AM
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99

86: NO NEED TO BE SO THIN-SKINNED ABOUT IT!


Posted by: OPINIONATED FUCKING ARCHIVES | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:25 AM
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100

and no more lectures

Do you promise? Because no more lectures from you would be excellent!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:26 AM
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101

baiting MM is hard, coz he reacts irrationally


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:26 AM
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102

re: 99

86 is an expression of mild discontent.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:27 AM
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103

Well, what do you expect? It's not like he's a fully functioning adult.


Posted by: Cecily | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:28 AM
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104

She's just a troll these days

I actually disagree. Her behavior is shitty and childish sometimes, but I don't think she's just a troll.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:28 AM
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105

103 to 101


Posted by: Cecily | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:28 AM
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96 - they're not lectures! Some people are actually trying to get you to understand that the way you behave here is obnoxious. If you honestly think that you are the only rational one, and every other commenter here is a fucking idiot, then fuck off and find somewhere else to play.

Heebie - glad your mum was fine. I can imagine the panicky feeling very well.


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:28 AM
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107

that was not a lecture, but an observational sentence not aimed to anyone which didn't need any response imo
but if it elicited some of them i naturally felt an urge to contr-respond
and i hate the comments telling me what to do, keep them to yourselves


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:31 AM
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108

I think I'm with ttaM. I tend to read these read-misdirection threads as follows.

A. read makes some generalized, perhaps half-thought-out observation.
B. Someone takes it to mean something personal.
C. Defensive posturing ensues from both sides.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:34 AM
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109

i hate the comments telling me what to do, keep them to yourselves

you don't see any problem with this command?


Posted by: Cecily | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:34 AM
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110

half-thought out observation
yeah, i know i have to cite pubmed everytime i open my mouth
109 but who was the first


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:37 AM
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111

^


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:38 AM
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108: I'm not really seeing how there's a way to take 16 and 18 other than personally, Stanley, seeing as they're addressed to me?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:41 AM
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yeah, i know i have to cite pubmed everytime i open my mouth

That's what's so frustrating, read. You know you're required to cite pubmed, and yet you keep neglecting or refusing to do so.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:43 AM
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114

112: I took 15 as taking the piss out of 14, which would normally fun-'n'-games hour but with read seems to set everything careening towards misunderstanding.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:49 AM
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115

Anyhow, I'm off to swim jog eat Mexican food. (No, really!).


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:51 AM
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116

I can't stay either. We're repainting my front screen door. (Cec, how I wish you were here.)

I want my opinion to be clear before I go. I think read insults my friends here in ways that we would never accept in person or from a native speaker. Every time I see it, I'm going to say that I don't like it. My strong preference would be for read to stop attacking people here.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:56 AM
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117

yeah, 16 was not possible without 15, it's like karma fyi MM
if you skipped your humorous urge, i wouldn't address you personally i think
well, i'll go to do something else too, enough for today interesting blog interactions


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:58 AM
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114: Ah. Actually, 15 was a "those goofy moms!" response, but I can see how it looks like a "that darn read" response. In fact it works just as well for the latter, so you have a point.

Regardless, I don't see any other way to take 18 other than obnoxious given that read doesn't actually know anything about me or my life.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:03 AM
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if you skipped your humorous urge, i wouldn't address you personally i think

Hey! You promised no more lectures!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:04 AM
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it is really hard to write out easy instructions on how to text message, because there are so many pathways at any given spot, and you want to give streamlined instructions yet encourage the user to use some freaking intuition if the mood strikes them.

All-purpose instructions here.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:05 AM
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have addressed,
that was not a lecture again, just explanation
you really like the word obnoxious, do you
i find that strange
now, let me go to do things


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:09 AM
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I can't teach my mom how to do anything on a computer, because I can't stand the fact that she doesn't know what she is doing, and then I take over and/or get grumpy. I find this reaction strange and more than a little disturbing. I mean, I'm not the most patient person in the world, but generally I have no problems waiting for someone to understand things. Maybe it's just because I expect her to know how to do everything already, since, after all, she's my mom?


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:11 AM
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122: My experience is very similar.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:17 AM
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Step 1 is take the battery out. cel phones have more modes than vi.

Actually jitterbug is a cel phone company like a fisher-Price for old folks.

'This cel phone recommended for ages below 9 or over 90'.
-----------------------------

There is an arguement for the benevolence of a dealth tax somwhere in the above posts.


Posted by: Econolicious gerontologist | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:18 AM
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Good Morning kids! What's up? Hey, maybe we can all get together and put on a show!


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:23 AM
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Further to 122: I mean, I'm a patient teacher in general, but with my mom, I find myself getting impatient and grumpy very quickly. She's actually hyper-competent in pretty much anything she sets her mind to, so part of it may be me assuming that if she isn't getting it, it must be because she's not really trying or has just told herself she can't.

Actually, the "Oh, I just can't do this" defeatist response is one of the things I find most frustrating during teaching, so that probably plays into it as well, but still, my fuse is much much shorter when it's my mom doing that than when someone else does.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:26 AM
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126: THE BAND!!!

(I wish there were a way to link to youtube videos but start them at a particular point, in this case at 1:50)


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:33 AM
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And I do NOT recommend trying to teach one's mom to use a chainsaw.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:34 AM
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(I wish there were a way to link to youtube videos but start them at a particular point, in this case at 1:50)

That's a good idea. Perhaps you should comment it on the many videos contained therein. I understand it's a venue for high-brow considerations.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:39 AM
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129.last: Ask and ye shall receive.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:40 AM
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i always meant to ask what's chandala, ToS? puta is a Spanish word i know, and i'm not that as far i know myself
and i find all kinds of cults eh, obnoxious


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:40 AM
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Every time I see it, I'm going to say that I don't like it.

For full effect, you have to find another blog read comments at, and say it *there*. Over and over and over again.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:41 AM
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130: Awesome! Thanks, Josh!

132: Eh, if Jes had been reacting to new instances of something, I wouldn't have had a problem. It was the fact that she kept doing it regardless of topic that was annoying.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:47 AM
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Posted by: | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:57 AM
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It's impossible to really understand adulthood until you've helped your mom set up automated backups.

I can't believe I forgot to have children!


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:57 AM
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M/tch, please do not skip your urges to be humorous. Completely aside from read, please don't take that advice.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 12:00 PM
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136: Stop telling me what to do!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 12:07 PM
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91 is great.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 12:11 PM
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Ooooh, I'm prepping your lecture right now, M/tch. Gonna be a long one, on your duty to the community to be funny.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 12:12 PM
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(I wish there were a way to link to youtube videos but start them at a particular point, in this case at 1:50)

There is! At the end of the URL, append a tag (that is, just add a few extra characters) using this syntax:

#t=1m50s

You can change the numbers before the m and s to edit the minutes and seconds.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 12:16 PM
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disappointment, i thought it's something more like that, masons or something


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 12:17 PM
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140: Stop telling M/tch what to do, fishbasket.

(Actually, that's really neat; thanks!)


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 12:24 PM
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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8D9FXNmDGlY#t=4m06s
thank you, it's very useful, i 've tried this and it's not working, i mean i wanted to cut out and exclude the last seconds of the clip, how can i do that? thanks in advance for the tip


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 12:45 PM
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maybe i can't do that if it's not my uploaded video, pity


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 12:51 PM
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I can't figure out how to do automated backups on my netbook, and our wii is broken. But my oldest child is only six! How long will I have to wait to get the tech support I need?


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 12:56 PM
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140: I think it's obnoxious the way you ignored Josh's 130 like that, rfts.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 1:01 PM
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Both my parents have died. It's an overrated experience, let me tell you.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 1:02 PM
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Although I also think it's insensitive the way Josh pwnd you. I mean, by a whole 36 minutes? That's just too much. You should be ashamed, Josh.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 1:02 PM
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147: Don't try to confuse things with actual evidence, Walt.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 1:03 PM
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EVIDENCE IS FOR PUSSIES!!


Posted by: OPINIONATED DICK CHENEY | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 1:05 PM
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Sob, pwned!

Yes, read, all you can do with the URL manipulation is to control where the playback begins; you'd have to edit the file yourself and upload the edited version if you actually want to exclude part of the file. As far as I know, there's no way to make it just stop playing before the end.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 1:06 PM
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by a whole 36 minutes? That's just too much.

It is rather extreme.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 1:07 PM
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You can also just use the form here, which makes me nostalgic for the early days when you had to use the new york times link generator to create lasting links to old NYT articles.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 1:07 PM
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153: I love the text at the bottom.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 1:08 PM
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147 a real adult speaking
if you can prove otherwise i'll retrieve my observation
i'm talking to the hypothetical 'insensitive' WSG
but i think for the christians or any deeply religious people it's a bit different, they associate that parental reverential feelings with their god, Virgin Mary, etc i guess, their parents are for them just another humans, not that different from any strangers especially if they (the parents) happened wronged them somehow, i mean not like child abuse cases, there the parents abusing their kids are irresponsible immature not worthy their name etc
it's just my wild speculation, no need to refute it severely, i'm just trying to understand how people severe their family ties over some for example political issues


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 1:25 PM
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You know, when I first saw the post title, I thought this was going to be a post about "mom jeans". Or maybe even "mom genes" (on the veldt), because heebie is all clever like that.

Despite my initial disappointment that such was not the case, I ended up thinking it was a pretty spiffy post anyway. Well done, heebie.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 1:26 PM
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recall i meant


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 1:27 PM
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116

I want my opinion to be clear before I go. I think read insults my friends here in ways that we would never accept in person or from a native speaker. Every time I see it, I'm going to say that I don't like it. My strong preference would be for read to stop attacking people here.

So you think it is wrong to make allowances for people from other cultures?


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 1:42 PM
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How did James B. Shearer get so good at deriving moral rules from blog comments? It's uncanny.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 1:54 PM
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i don't want any allowances, just i'm always like a bit baffled whenever i say something a bit different people react too strongly, why not just to read and pass it like that's one's viewpoint
or argue somehow, no, one needs to ridicule, reprimand or just plainly tell to go elsewhere
i don't see any of that famous tolerance thing


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 1:56 PM
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no, one needs to ridicule

You might want to read back through your comments in this thread.


Posted by: bailey | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:04 PM
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What famous tolerance thing?


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:07 PM
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people with alive parents are not full adults yet

Obama is the first orphan president since Reagan, no ?


Posted by: Econolicious, 40-44 or fight ! | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:44 PM
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it's a pity J left when she was told to go away, where is one's perseverance, endurance etc
ToS's anti-Jewish and other abusive sentiments i don't understand but he has some character which i think i kinda respect
161, 162 whatever, please, talk to each other


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:44 PM
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I have found that I am unable to gain the perspective and self knowledge afforded by certain events (e.g. birth of a child) without experiencing those events. Reading others accounts doesn't help a priori. I think that is Read's original point. Furthermore, remember the Internet is serious business.


Posted by: W. Breeze | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:46 PM
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164

it's a pity J left when she was told to go away ...

She wasn't told to go away, she was told to stop beating a dead horse.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:48 PM
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160: Read, everyone here gets ridiculed, so if you truly don't want any allowances, you're going to have to face ridiculing when you say things that others find ridicule-worthy.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:49 PM
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maybe, that was equivalent to telling her to go away


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:50 PM
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you're going to have to face ridiculing
and you have to deal with my harsher comments, deal


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:51 PM
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161, 162 whatever, please, talk to each other

Seriously, if you want to say things and not have others comment on them, start your own blog with comments disabled. Please don't expect to come here, post whatever you want, and not get any reactions or replies. No-one else gets such careful treatment here as you seem to be demanding. Why should you?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:52 PM
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Guys! I'm thinking of a word. Quick, what is it?


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:52 PM
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169: Fine by me, and I don't think I've ever said otherwise.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:52 PM
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171: merkin


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:53 PM
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171: Bonobo?

Weltschmertz?

Tin?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:53 PM
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I'll give you a hint: Dom DeLuise


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:53 PM
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Is there a word version of Boticelli?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:54 PM
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wow, jms. that was fast


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:54 PM
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Ok, now I'm thinking of another word.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:54 PM
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Cannonball?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:55 PM
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pwn?


Posted by: pwned again | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:55 PM
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no, not any of those.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:56 PM
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Guacamole?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:56 PM
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Puissant?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:56 PM
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no, afraid not


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:57 PM
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Cabbage?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:57 PM
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I'll give you a hint: Dom DeLuise

John Rhys-Davies


Posted by: Criminally Bulgur | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:57 PM
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Okay, I just google image searched to see if I was thinking of the right person, and when the results came up my immediate reaction was "why is my screen filled with photos of Paul Prudhomme and Luciano Pavarotti?"

I'm pretty sure that makes me a sizist.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:57 PM
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another hint: the Isle of Man


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:57 PM
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Sizist? Is that the word?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 2:59 PM
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Triskelion?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:00 PM
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time's up. it was corsage.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:00 PM
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Okay, I just google image searched to see if I was thinking of the right island, and when the results came up my immediate reaction was "why is my screen filled with photos of the Isle of Wight and Guernsey?"

I'm pretty sure that makes me a, um, um, bad person of some sort.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:00 PM
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pwned :(


Posted by: corsage | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:01 PM
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I'm not very good at text's game.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:02 PM
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194: That's okay. Neither is text.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:02 PM
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Oh I know, let's play that memory game where the first person chooses a word beginning with a, then the second person has to remember that word and add a word beginning with b, and so on through the alphabet!

I'll start:

I'm going on a trip, and I'm taking an aardvark.

Stanley, you're next!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:04 PM
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158: So you think it is wrong to make allowances for people from other cultures?

{singing}
There's just two songs in me,
And I just wrote the third.
Don't know how I got the inspiration,
Or how I wrote the words.
Spent my whole life just diggin' up
my music's shallow grave,
for the two songs in me,
and third one I just.... maddddeeee.....
{simulates tuba with armpit}

131: and i find all kinds of cults eh, obnoxious

A rich man once told me,
'Hey, life's a funny thing.'
A poor man once told me that,
'I can't afford to speak.'
Now I'm in the middle,
like a bird without a beak.
Cuz there's just two songs in me,
and I just wrote the third.
Don't know how I got the inspiration,
Or how I wrote the words.
Spent my whole life just diggin' up
my music's shallow grave,
for the two songs in me,
and third one I just.... maddddeeee.....
{simulates tuba by blowing on forearm}

155: i'm talking to the hypothetical 'insensitive' WSG

So I went to the President,
And I asked old what'shisname,
'Have you ever gotten writer's block,'
or somethin' like the same?
He just started talkin',
like he was on TV,
'If there's just two songs in ya, boy,
whaddya want from me?'
{special secret tuba noise}

121: you really like the word obnoxious, do you

So I bought myself some denim pants
and a silllllver guitar
But I politely told the laydeez
you'll still have to call me...sir.
Because I have to keep my self-respect,
I'll never be a star!
Because there's just two songs in me
And this is... nummmbbbbbbberrrrrrr thhhhhhhhhreeeeeeeee!

max
['I shoulda made a singing sock, I think.']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:05 PM
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Neither is text.

well I've never lost at it.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:07 PM
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196: I'm not sure I understand. So I would say something like this?

I'm going on a trip, and I'm taking an aardvark, beyotch.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:08 PM
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I get a bit of a panic response since Mom got sick, anytime there seems to be urgency to returning a call.

I experienced the other side of this recently when in conjunction with some vacation planning I phoned a couple of my parent's sibs to whom I rarely speak. The initial "Why would JP be calling?" catch in their voice was palpable (and which I had anticipated and tired to counteract by announcing myself in an upbeat). My parents are quite old, and at a stage of their lives where the relative imminence of death is a constant companion. Through her assorted civic activities, my mother had been friends with many older women and even years ago pointed out to me the prominence of funerals on her social calendar. Not trying to say that it is all bad, but it is certainly there.

And this does speak to the fact that there is undoubtedly something that changes in you when both parents die. Here at age 55, I still have a place to go which provides a pretty good semblance of my childhood surroundings complete with old people playing with an uncanny parent act (I always make a PB&J sandwich late at night when I am there, as I was last weekend.) But ascribing general characteristics to people based on where they are in that cycle is really quite silly in the bad way.

On preview, I can see that my timing for posting this is exquisite, you immature little poopyheads!


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:08 PM
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Pssst! Stanley! Here's a hint: the first word was "aardvark".


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:08 PM
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I'm going on a trip, and I'm taking an aardvark, beyotch. Clever.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:10 PM
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201 posted before 199, but Stanley changed it around with his corrupt posting powers.

202: Good. Text, you're fourth!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:12 PM
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I just hope I get "m" so I can say "mommy-pants"! That would be so cool!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:15 PM
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I'm going on a trip, and I'm taking an aardvark beyotch, Clever, down to the market to buy some thick sausages.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:16 PM
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well I've never lost at it.

And I've never lost a Super Bowl.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:16 PM
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I'm going on a trip, and I'm taking an aardvark beyotch, Clever, down to the market to buy some thick sausages even some thin ones, I'm no girth queen you know,


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:19 PM
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Speaking of games, who here has played the game known as "The Minister's Cat"?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:20 PM
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"I'm going on a trip, and I'm taking an aardvark beyotch, Clever, down to the market to buy some thick sausages even some thin ones, I'm no girth queen you know," longingly said as she eyed my pajamas;


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:20 PM
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" longingly said as she eyed my pajamas;

You suck at this game too! It's supposed to start with the letter "f".


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:27 PM
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Not to mention that this is supposed to be a family game, sicko.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:28 PM
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I'm not really seeing the point of this game.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:29 PM
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I thought we were going last letter, so now you need a q.

and it is a family game! keep playing to find out more.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:30 PM
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rather, first letter of last word. time's a-wasting.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:32 PM
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212: It tests memory. And you're next!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:33 PM
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i know it's that, dead horse? now, but
ascribing general characteristics to people based on where they are in that cycle is really quite silly in the bad way
how it hurts anyone i can't understand, you are a baby for your parents however old you get and that's the most blessed thing for one, was the only meaning i had in my mind and people all got offended by that, how strange


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:34 PM
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216: Well, people often get offended when they feel they're being grouped into a category inaccurately or unfairly.

If someone said, for example, that "doctors care more about their own egos than helping people" or "Asians are immature", how would you feel? And if they then told you you were strange for feeling that way?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:40 PM
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210:flongingly faid as she feyed my fe fi fojamas?


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:47 PM
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i would certainly not tell to that someone to go away or shut up, jumpy people


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:52 PM
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218: Exactly! Who's next?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:52 PM
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mcmanus, manus, bo-banus,
banana-fana fo-fanus
fee-fi-mo-anus
mcmanus!


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:53 PM
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219: Well, many of us lack your amazing maturity and self control, read. Show a little tolerance!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:53 PM
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fee-fi-mo-anus

Hottt!

But deeply inappropriate for a family game.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:53 PM
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It's a fundamental part of the game.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:55 PM
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Show a little tolerance!
i'm still talking to you, what do you want


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:56 PM
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225: Well, that does show tolerance! Well done, read, well done! I stand in awe.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 3:59 PM
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still have a place to go which provides a pretty good semblance of my childhood surroundings complete with old people playing with an uncanny parent act

Hm. My family has broken and reformed in different combinations so many times that this is simply impossible. (Although the setting does seem somewhat less important than the bit about being with your family members. Hanging out with my sister with the rest of my family turns me into a 13 year old, which is not very pleasant for anyone involved.)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 4:00 PM
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You're all a bunch of adult children unless you aren't adults or don't have parents. I think that clears it up.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 4:06 PM
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227: I just hope your family has learned a valuable lesson from all that.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 4:13 PM
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229: I have. Mostly, don't get married. (I kid.)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 4:16 PM
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It tests memory.

How?


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 4:20 PM
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231: You have to remember the alphabet to play. Duh.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 4:21 PM
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231: Really, teo, I get the feeling you're not even trying . . . .


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 4:22 PM
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(I kid.)

And so, the search for Emerson's successor must go on.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 4:23 PM
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234: Yes, I'm too much of a romantic to sign on with Emerson. But the oppressed cynic in me thinks he's right.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 4:24 PM
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235: But you've signed on with the other Emerson:

But granting that for ends so sacred and dear, some relaxation must be had, I think, that if a man find in himself any strong bias to poetry, to art, to the contemplative life, drawing him to these things with a devotion incompatible with good husbandry, that man ought to reckon early with himself, and, respecting the compensations of the Universe, ought to ransom himself from the duties of economy, by a certain rigor and privation in his habits. For privileges so rare and grand, let him not stint to pay a great tax. Let him be a caenobite, a pauper, and if need be, celibate also. Let him learn to eat his meals standing, and to relish the taste of fair water and black bread. He may leave to others the costly conveniences of housekeeping, and large hospitality, and the possession of works of art. Let him feel that genius is a hospitality, and that he who can create works of art needs not collect them. He must live in a chamber, and postpone his self-indulgence, forewarned and forearmed against that frequent misfortune of men of genius, -- the taste for luxury. This is the tragedy of genius, -- attempting to drive along the ecliptic with one horse of the heavens and one horse of the earth, there is only discord and ruin and downfall to chariot and charioteer.

Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 4:34 PM
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And:

I have now spoken of the education of the scholar by nature, by books, and by action.

It remains to say somewhat of his duties.They are such as become Man Thinking. They may all be comprised in self-trust. The office of the scholar is to cheer, to raise, and to guide men by showing them facts amidst appearances. He plies the slow, unhonored, and unpaid task of observation. Flamsteed and Herschel, in their glazed observatories, may catalogue the stars with the praise of all men, and, the results being splendid and useful, honor is sure. But he, in his private observatory, cataloguing obscure and nebulous stars of the human mind, which as yet no man has thought of as such, -- watching days and months, sometimes, for a few facts; correcting still his old records; -- must relinquish display and immediate fame. In the long period of his preparation, he must betray often an ignorance and shiftlessness in popular arts, incurring the disdain of the able who shoulder him aside. Long he must stammer in his speech; often forego the living for the dead. Worse yet, he must accept, -- how often! poverty and solitude. For the ease and pleasure of treading the old road, accepting the fashions, the education, the religion of society, he takes the cross of making his own, and, of course, the self-accusation, the faint heart, the frequent uncertainty and loss of time, which are the nettles and tangling vines in the way of the self-relying and self-directed; and the state of virtual hostility in which he seems to stand to society, and especially to educated society.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 4:37 PM
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237: Don't you just want to hug that man? Ahem, that is, god I love Emerson.

On the parental thing, it's certainly the case in my own experience that having no living parents changes things significantly. JP's I still have a place to go which provides a pretty good semblance of my childhood surroundings complete with old people playing with an uncanny parent act (I always make a PB&J sandwich late at night when I am there, as I was last weekend.)

sounds quite familiar to me. When that emotional place* goes away, it can be somewhat ... bewildering.

* Funnily, I always reverted to certain eating habits as well when visiting my mom: in cool weather, hot ovaltine!


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 5:20 PM
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|| I think you all should be sitting in a circle with two guitars singing Beatles songs like I am. Seriously, this is good times. |>


Posted by: emdash | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 5:30 PM
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|| Except now everyone's singing the harmony parts. Someone take the melody, dammit! |>


Posted by: emdash | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 5:32 PM
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239: And yet you are posting to unfogged! Why?

I'm with you, though. Sounds great. This is being done around a campfire, of course.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 5:35 PM
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I figured M. Dash was talking about this.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 5:48 PM
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242: Nope, it's an old-fashioned hootenanny. And now I just had the distinct pleasure of a real professional musician playing one my songs in a sing-along. I'm having a good day. And am somewhat Becks-style.


Posted by: emdash | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 5:58 PM
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242: Oh. That occurred to me. I still like the campfire scenario.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 5:58 PM
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Aha! 244 crossed with 243, obviously. Yay hootennannies!


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 6:02 PM
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re: 239

Playing two guitars requires some pretty impressive chops.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 6:05 PM
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246: emdash is singing harmonies as well. He's fussed because nobody will sing the melody. I hope he won't be embarrassed in the morning.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 6:08 PM
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Playing two guitars, singing harmony, and commenting. He's a one-man multi-media extravaganza!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 6:12 PM
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||
High School Acquaintance is updating facebook about the wingfest in DC:

(Wingnut Acquaintance) is back from the March on DC!!!! They said CNN reported 5,000 demonstrators. I was part of a crowd of 1.2 MILLION according to the DC Police. I got many Thumbs up and requests for pictures with my "YOU LIE!" sign. Jim got pats on the back for his "STAY AWAY FROM MY CHILDREN!" Mom's asked "Will YOU pay my taxes, Mr. Obama?" Yes! We came, we protested and we were heard! WE THE PEOPLE ARE COMING FOR YOU!
[comment on update] You didn't really expect the Communist News Network (CNN) to report the truth, did you? Glad it all went well. Would have been good to be able to go to.
(Wingnut acquaintance) I was so stoked to attend this. It's said we surpassed the Million Man March of the mid 90's though that will be proven or disproven later. We surpassed the Vietnam Protests of the 60's. It was a great feeling to be walking from Freedom Plaza west of the White House to the Capital. The Inaugural route in reverse! I think they may have heard us. But just to be sure "CAN YOU HEAR US NOW!!!!!!!!"

Crazy, crazy, crazy.
|>


Posted by: Cecily | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 6:13 PM
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On that Facebook acquaintance thing, specifically the high school alumni: I am not a bad person for receiving a friend request from someone it took me 2 hours to recall last night (as in, I know that name, kind of, I think, but who is that? I don't know, I really don't, maybe I should just write and ask her who she is, but no no, that's not good, um). I know that it's not bad of me not to have responded to the friend request.

More seriously: I've just spent two weeks clearing out my mom's house in NH. Memories were aplenty, and I can't take much more right now. So, onetime friend from high school, or junior high, we knew each other very briefly, and I don't speak Facebook.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 6:39 PM
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Catching upon the thread:

On tech support: you don't know the way they typically navigate the phone

This is so true. I have solved some absolutely confounding problems simply by sitting next to someone and watching as they use a computer. Every time it happens I can add another shred of knowledge ("never assume that a left arrow will be intituively understood as a 'back' button"), but it ultimately doesn't matter, because people have so many different ways to react to piece of technology that you really just have to sit there sometimes.

On the topic of parents and loss, I think there is a palpable shift in many people's lives when they become the person responsible for things that they used to think of the older generation as being responsible for. Being the person who hosts holiday dinners, being the person who reliably takes the older aunt out to lunch, being the person who advises the young nephews on car purchases or serves as executor for an estate.

Often, this shift happens as a result of death, but also often not. It can be a more gradual process, happening in some areas of life decades before it happens in others. I know adult children of alcoholics who more or less completed that shift by the time they were 9 or 10, and have other friends in their 50s with parents in their 70s and 80s who in certain key respects really have not made it.

I guess what I'm fumbling around to say is that I do share a certain agreement with read's initial statement, in that having living parents often places people in a category that later, in retrospect, feels comparatively privileged and secure, even with all of the challenges, grief, conflict, and estrangement that a present-day parent/child relationship can have.

Maybe I'm biased about this, because it did occur to me about a month ago in a conversation with my best friend that literally every one of my 12 or 14 closest friends has living parents, including step-parents. But it does seem like a true gulf.

OK, enough argumentativeness. The thread is probably getting silly or political now anyway; it's taken me so long to write this. Off to jog eat Mexican food paint!


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 6:42 PM
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250: I reject friend requests more than seems to be the average, because I don't really want to know about all the details of my former acquaintances' lives. I think it is easier to deny (ignore) friendship in the first place than to delete friends later.


Posted by: Cecily | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 6:49 PM
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I guess what I'm fumbling around to say is that I do share a certain agreement with read's initial statement, in that having living parents often places people in a category that later, in retrospect, feels comparatively privileged and secure, even with all of the challenges, grief, conflict, and estrangement that a present-day parent/child relationship can have.

Agreed, and thank you for articulating it. I felt I couldn't.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 6:51 PM
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I guess what I'm fumbling around to say is that I do share a certain agreement with read's initial statement

I share a certain agreement with it too, although "certain" is definitely doing some serious work in the sentence. It's the bald assertions without qualifiers in read's initial statement that grate.

having living parents often places people in a category that later, in retrospect, feels comparatively privileged and secure

The word "often" in this sentence is important. There are also people who only begin to feel secure and actually truly alive and free once they no longer have living parents, and people at all points in between as well.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 7:08 PM
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Which is why no statement of personal experience counts as evidence, but is merely anecdata.

Have I ever said, by the way, how much the appeal to evidence (the increasingly prevalent statement "I see no evidence that [x]") annoys me? Evidence is called for some times, and not at other times.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 7:29 PM
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I see no evidence you should feel that way, parsi.


Posted by: paranoid android | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 7:51 PM
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the increasingly prevalent statement

Cite?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 8:29 PM
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Evidence is called for some times, and not at other times.

But to be serious, can you give some examples of what you're talking about? When is evidence not called for but gets called for? Are you just talking about in matters of personal taste or something?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 8:38 PM
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After I'm done laughing, I note that "cite" is short for "citation," so I've gathered, which is apparently lawyer-speak. That annoys me too.

"Cite" is a verb, okay?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 8:42 PM
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259 to 256 and 257.

I can't answer 248, M/tch; I'm tired, I'm afraid. All I can say is that the phrase "I see no evidence that" is increasingly employed in cases where I would not have thought that evidence of the sort apparently called for is required. It begins to seem like a verbal parley.

No, not just in matters of personal taste.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 8:48 PM
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In 260, "248" s/b "258".


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 8:50 PM
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the phrase "I see no evidence that" is increasingly employed in cases where I would not have thought that evidence of the sort apparently called for is required.

Yes. I've seen it primarily in online arguments, where it's really common from political trolls, sometimes to the degree that it's hard to tell when it's actually coming in good faith. In blogs where it's expected that you have a shared understanding of the world it often comes off as a particularly jerkish way to say "If a subset of society that really cares about numbers and measurement hasn't found a way to document what you're talking about, I'm not going to believe it exists."

It would be like if, when we had the "random-men-ordering-women-to-smile phenomenon" discussion here, instead of people reacting with "Me to," or "Wow, I've never seen that happen, but I take your word for it," we'd gotten a slew of people saying "So? Where's the study? How do we know this is an actually occurring issue and not just one nutcase woman or some anecdata?"

In general I love empirical data, but I definitely recognize a tendency (again, mostly but not exclusively online) to use the holy grail of data as a bludgeon to dispute or cast aspersions on someone's reported experience and observations.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 8:58 PM
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Good heavens. "Me too," of course.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 8:59 PM
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Further to 262: However, you can usually deduce which ones are the bad-faith arguers, because when you present empircal data they find a way to dismiss it. I just got a mailing about an upcoming lecture series, and my immediate reaction to the list of speakers was "Wow, it's all men." Then I decided I was being knee-jerk about it, so I sat and counted. Each page was 5-1 or 6-1 M-F, except for the last two pages, which were 5-4 and 4-5 respectively.

That's the kind of thing where, if I'd been discussing it with someone who disputed my claim that the series was disproportionately male, and then I gave the data, the definitive bad-faith argument would be something like "Well, but you don't know the pool of speakers they were choosing from. It could just be that there are a lot more qualified men."


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:03 PM
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I think you should smile when you say things like that, witt; you might get a better reception if you weren't so, you know, confrontational.


Posted by: alameida | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:24 PM
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Witt has gone farther than I was willing to go in suggesting that the call for evidence can be a case of bad faith argumentation. That's because I'm a wimp lately (it's circumstantial), and she isn't.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:26 PM
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262: Thanks, that makes sense.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:30 PM
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I see no evidence (nor any good reason) that "cite" cannot also be used as a noun.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:32 PM
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268: Do you want me to call in Farber? I believe he's on record opposing the use of "reference" as a verb.

I feel we might as well call in DS on the use of "going forward," but that's mostly because I miss him. I'll throw in "grow your business," though. That one bugs me.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:40 PM
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269.1: Huh. So Farber can be wrong! Although of course I'll need a cite of him saying that before I really believe it.

269.2: Personal preferences are fine and dandy, just don't stray into language police work.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:46 PM
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Ah, the OED lists "cite" used as a noun at least as far back as 1957, and not as lawyer speak either.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:53 PM
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270.2: Oh, I know. I'm just having fun. Those were ones that bug me, that's all.

270.1: Farber carrying on against "reference" as a verb is somewhere on ObWi, I think. It is a new phenomenon, isn't it? To say "so-and-so referenced x", rather than "so-and-so referred to x". How is it wrong to think that "reference" is a noun?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:53 PM
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272.2 It's wrong to think of reference only as a noun, since quite obviously it gets used effectively as a verb quite often. I don't know if it's a new phenomenon or not, although I doubt it, but even if it is, what's the problem with new phenomena? Too startling?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:58 PM
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at least as far back as 1957

I was born in 1787, so you can't fool me.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:59 PM
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I think it's Strunk and White that rails against "contact" as a verb. I have to say I think I've grown used to that one.

I was terrorized into using "quotation" rather than "quote" as a child, and now in my editorial role terrorize others. Thus does the cycle of language police continue.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 9:59 PM
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I am prepared to hear M/tch's defense of "quote" in place of "quotation." Lay it on us, M/tch.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:05 PM
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Here's a good post on "reference" as a verb. I particularly like the last several paragraphs.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:09 PM
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This post captures my feelings on the subject of language peevery/policing pretty darn well.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:11 PM
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276: It's pretty complicated: "quote" is widely used and understood as a noun. What's the problem again?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:14 PM
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Few things are more awesome than the use of cite as a noun. You can attribute that quote to me going forward.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:16 PM
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I like it when M/tch orneries.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:18 PM
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280: You can attribute that quote to me going forward on a go forward basis.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:25 PM
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I had the quote/quotation thing drilled into me as well. I'd use quotation as the noun form in anything formal/academic, but otherwise don't care. Same with cite/citation. Lots of people who deal with citations talk about "getting the cites" or "pulling the cites" or whatever.

To me it's more analogous to using the apostrophe instead of writing out the full words: "you're" instead of "you are", "it's" instead of "it is." I had it drilled into me that you do not do the contraction (with the possible exception of possessives) in more formal/academic writing. So I don't.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:30 PM
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277: Hm. Well, I like the term "verbing." As for how many Google hits a given formulation shows, well, okay. We all know that language morphs. I'll get over it, I'm sure, and accept "nite" and "lite" sometime soon. (Note to self: check Google hits for those.)

More seriously, of course "reference" as a verb enjoys broad use, and "cite" is increasingly common. I'll stop complaining, then. The language becomes. "Reference" as a verb will always sound awkward and appropriative to me.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:36 PM
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Silly M/tch, citing a linguist when discussing matters of language usage. Everyone knows that devoting one's life to the study of a subject instantly disqualifies one from having any credibility whatsoever in arguments over that subject among normal people, who are guided by inerrant common sense rather than a bunch of fancy sophistry and book-learning.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:42 PM
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Teo is rite!!


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:46 PM
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"you're" instead of "you are", "it's" instead of "it is." I had it drilled into me that you do not do the contraction (with the possible exception of possessives) in more formal/academic writing.

I've attempted to drill that out of hundreds of students, so far. We'll see.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:48 PM
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285: teo, I don't follow you. What I gather is that some of us have been confessing that certain terms are "cringe expressions" (per the link in 278). We're also confessing to having been trained to certain usages.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 10:53 PM
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What I'm saying is that when a linguist points out that that sort of thing is nonsense, one of the common responses is to say, "oh, he's just a linguist, and you know how they are, all descriptivist and everything; does anyone know the real answer?"

(To bring the thread full circle, I'm mostly thinking of my mom here. But I've seen this dynamic crop up from time to time at Unfogged as well.)


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:02 PM
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To clarify, I'm not reacting to anything anyone has said in this thread. It just reminded me of other, similar conversations.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:12 PM
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289: Okay. I couldn't tell if you were referring to something in the last 30 comments or so.

And if you're still here: What's that sort of thing [that is] is nonsense? It's any prescriptivist account of language-use? (Just checking.)


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:15 PM
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I had it drilled into me that you do not do the contraction (with the possible exception of possessives) in more formal/academic writing. So I don't.

Blah. I've repeatedly written things in papers like "Let's take a look at what happens when..." only to have collaborators turn it into "In this section we will examine the consequences of...". I'm not convinced this is to be preferred.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:16 PM
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And now, to find an ATM in Schiphol.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:17 PM
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It's any prescriptivist account of language-use?

Pretty much, yeah. The idea that a language consists of a finite set of words and rules, and that any deviation from those words and rules is wrong and needs to be avoided. (A lot of people seem to see this as even something akin to an issue of morality, as Zwicky points out in one of M/tch's links.) This leads to a lot of anxiety about getting the rules right, so people often ask what the "right" answer is if they're unsure, and self-appointed "grammarians" are only too happy to give them one.

Descriptive linguistics, of course, considers this all totally inaccurate as an interpretation of how language works. Languages are constantly changing, adding new words, shifting their grammatical structures, etc. What was ungrammatical 200 years ago is now standard. And there's nothing moral about it. People talk the way they talk, and what they say is the language. If it differs from the prescriptivist rules, that's an interesting fact worthy of study for what it might reveal about ongoing change, socioeconomic variability, or any number of other aspects of language as it's actually spoken.

But just try to tell the grammarians that, and you're out of the club.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:22 PM
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"In this section we will examine the consequences of...". I'm not convinced this is to be preferred.

Indeed, what about the rule against using the first person in formal writing? (And so on and so forth; you can see how quickly this dissolves into total absurdity.)


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:23 PM
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294: Understood. I was, in a previous decade, a philosopher of language.

Still, it's a mistake to suggest that there are no things that are roughly rule-like in language use, or to suggest that usage is *all* that matters. We could all dispense with capitalization altogether tomorrow (see texting and a lot of emailing), or with punctuation, but it really would be incorrect to say that our collective usage is the only guide at our disposal.

Basically, the descriptive/prescriptive opposition is misguided, a red herring. It's not a question of what we do do, vs. what we should do; we are guided in very large part by what we should do (we would be unable to learn to speak without knowing how we *should* do so).


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:34 PM
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Still, it's a mistake to suggest that there are no things that are roughly rule-like in language use, or to suggest that usage is *all* that matters.

Sure, but the point is that the actual rules (as opposed to the made-up rules) can only be determined by looking at what people actually say and examining it for the underlying patterns and uniformities. Which is basically what linguistics is all about.

We could all dispense with capitalization altogether tomorrow (see texting and a lot of emailing), or with punctuation, but it really would be incorrect to say that our collective usage is the only guide at our disposal.

But those things (like all forms of writing) are inherently arbitrary, so they don't have much relevance to language as such. Their main usefulness is just in setting a standard to maintain a certain core level of intelligibility even between people with quite different idiolects. Most linguists don't really care about prescriptivism over that sort of thing.

Basically, the descriptive/prescriptive opposition is misguided, a red herring. It's not a question of what we do do, vs. what we should do; we are guided in very large part by what we should do (we would be unable to learn to speak without knowing how we *should* do so).

Hoo boy, now you're opening a real can of worms.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:43 PM
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292: Agree that the second construction is dispreferred; I would have turned your contraction into "Let us." Though that does sound less elegant.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:44 PM
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I had a language teacher refer to that, in its equivalent form in Russian, as the "lettuce" construction.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:47 PM
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I might write "This section examines" or "Next we examine." But I don't know. I don't think it's necessarily better the way I learned it; it's just been drilled well enough that I don't think about it.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:49 PM
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A typical way for an archaeologist to phrase that would be "In this section the consequences of x will be examined." Archaeologists love the passive voice. I'm not sure why.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:51 PM
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I think I might even let let's slide. It's the many other contractions and colloquialisms to be found in students' papers that bear the wrath of my (not-red) pen. After all, presenting yourself professionally in writing is a skill that college graduates need.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:52 PM
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I would have turned your contraction into "Let us."

But almost no one ever says "let us", right? I can't think "let us" without thinking "... go then, you and I, when the evening is spread out against the sky...."


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:52 PM
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301: No, no passive voice! Bad! (I have been trained thoroughly in this matter and will never be able to shake it.)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:52 PM
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Indeed, what about the rule against using the first person in formal writing?

Well, let's is also first person. And anyway, not very many people would argue for avoiding the royal we in formal writing, would they?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:53 PM
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After all, presenting yourself professionally in writing is a skill that college graduates need.

I agree with this actually. There's a time and a place for prescriptivism, and this is it. The trouble comes when people start to reify the rules and interpret them as actual things rather than arbitrary hoops to jump through.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:54 PM
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(Note that the passive voice in 304 was intentional. I'm terrible; others wish I was not so.)

303: What's so wrong with making a TS Eliot reference in a scientific paper?


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:54 PM
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(And now I'm eating something resembling lunch, which makes no sense in either the time zone I'm in or the one I came from. Someone really needs to perfect the freeze-you-in-stasis-and-unfreeze-you-at-your-destination mode of transport.)

Um, sorry for the travel-livebloggingcommenting, which must be very boring. But, well, I'm very bored.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:55 PM
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And anyway, not very many people would argue for avoiding the royal we in formal writing, would they?

I think some would. This may be the motivation for all the archaeological passive voice.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:55 PM
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perfect the freeze-you-in-stasis-and-unfreeze-you-at-your-destination mode of transport

Nothing would make me happier. For dental procedures, too.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:56 PM
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I'm fairly indifferent to the passive voice in general, but I've read so much archaeology lately that I'm getting pretty sick of it. Quit hiding, archaeologists! Have the courage of your convictions!


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:57 PM
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The trouble comes when people start to reify the rules and interpret them as actual things rather than arbitrary hoops to jump through.

If you couldn't already tell from my commenting, I know almost nothing of formal grammar and am rarely prescriptivist.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:58 PM
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303: So this is an anesthesiology paper?


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:58 PM
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309: Yeah, I guess it's another of those field-dependent conventions.

302 After all, presenting yourself professionally in writing is a skill that college graduates need.

I agree with this too. But in my own professional writing, I always feel like it's better to be relatively informal and explain things in the way I would explain it to someone one-on-one standing in front of a blackboard. Mostly because I find that the papers I learn the most from are the ones written in that way. But this impulse always gets thwarted by the "rules", many of which seem to be aimed at making things dry and dull.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:59 PM
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Don't worry, (). I'm not talking about you specifically. Just musing in general.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-12-09 11:59 PM
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297.last: Hoo boy, now you're opening a real can of worms.

Yeah. Sorry. We're also talking past one another to some extent, using terms in different ways. It's far too late for that.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:00 AM
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In Soviet archeology, courage of convictions are had by you.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:00 AM
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I guess it's another of those field-dependent conventions.

Oddly, there's a fair amount of the royal "we" in archaeological writing as well, but it's nowhere near as common as the passive voice. Scarcely an "I" to be found, though.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:01 AM
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313: Could be. Or we could take the other route, through certain half-deserted streets.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:02 AM
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314.2: It seems to me that professional writing in academia is a whole other thing entirely; there, I agree with you that direct and clear is better. However, I suppose I have a bit of the "you have to know the rules before you can break them" mentality; I want students to learn how to write formally before they begin to stretch towards working in slang and other such informal constructions for maximum effect.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:04 AM
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The rule I learned was against first person singular, specifically. "We" is like a form of "one" - maybe it was out of opposition to the french use of "on" for "nous."


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:06 AM
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"In this section, we examine the potential of squeezing the universe into a ball."


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:08 AM
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294

... People talk the way they talk, and what they say is the language. ...

The spoken language. The written language can be different.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:09 AM
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It's hard to apply all of this to philosophical writing, I must say. When would one say "I"? Primarily just in laying out what one intends to argue, or in laying aside certain counter-arguments with which one is not concerned, for certain stated reasons. Otherwise, the first person singular really wouldn't come up.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:10 AM
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Archeology: "Here the stone images were raised by our team of researchers. This project was funded by grant money from the estate of a deceased benefactor."


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:10 AM
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Oh, I went and saw pretty pictures of stars tonight at a gallery. And to a comic book store to see my friends promoting their web comic, but that's even more of a tangent.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:10 AM
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"Despite early claims in the literature [1], we find that a universe squeezed into a ball does not, in fact, roll.

...

[1] Eliot, T.S. "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock". ..."


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:11 AM
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Wait, does 304 actually use the passive voice? I suppose, technically, "have been trained" does count, but does it really matter in cases where it would be more awkward to include the actual subject?


Posted by: paranoid android | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:12 AM
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"...The questions raised were therefore underwhelming."


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:12 AM
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Oh, I went and saw pretty pictures of stars tonight at a gallery.

On a magic lantern screen? (You know what I mean.)


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:15 AM
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328: It could be argued that knowing who did the training makes that sentence even more meaningful; my general rule of thumb for avoiding the passive voice is that one should never be obscuring the actor.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:16 AM
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330: Sadly, no. They were framed, and in a proper gallery.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:16 AM
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Wait, does 304 actually use the passive voice?

Yes.

I suppose, technically, "have been trained" does count, but does it really matter in cases where it would be more awkward to include the actual subject?

Depends what you mean by "matter," I guess. It's definitely the passive, but it's probably the most elegant way to phrase the sentiment here. A prescriptivist would probably say to rephrase the whole thing.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:17 AM
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"I have seen my bunsen burner flicker and I have seen the infernal review board snicker, and in short, I was unfunded."


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:21 AM
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There can't be that many more lines left in the poem.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:22 AM
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And I botched the meter on that last one. So I'll stop.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:23 AM
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You've done nothing with rolling trousers or coffee spoons or Michelangelo.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:24 AM
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A descriptivist would just go ahead and write: "Yo, here's the shit:"


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:24 AM
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338 to 333.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:25 AM
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Mermaids singing! Windowpanes! Lonely men in shirt-sleeves!


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:28 AM
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"In the control sample, the subjects come and go, taking doses of a placebo."


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:28 AM
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Arms that in the lamplight are downed with light brown hair!


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:29 AM
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And I totally forgot about posting this comment a few days ago. I must be in a very Prufrocky mood or something this week.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:31 AM
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An old, related thread.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:32 AM
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(Start at comment 79. But see also the post title.)


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:33 AM
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"On the acoustic properties of voices beneath the music of a farther room"

Anyway, I think what the descriptivists are saying is, don't let those prescriptivists fix you in a formulated phrase! Then you'll be stuck, sprawling on a pin.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:34 AM
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Damn, Christina Ricci is hot.


Posted by: paranoid android | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:40 AM
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"Now we turn to an examination of the effect of wind on the color of waves."


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:40 AM
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"All measurements in this study have been expressed in the unit of the coffee spoon."


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:42 AM
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"The coroner's report indicated that the accident occurred after the cyclist's unrolled trousers became caught in the chain ring, causing the cyclist to lose control of the bike.

"The shop owner said the damage to the window panes, compared to the loss of life, was minimal and would be covered by insurance.

"A lone man, whose shirt sleeves stood out from the dress of the other mourners, was seen placing a flower on the grave following the service."


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:49 AM
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"random-men-ordering-women-to-smile phenomenon" discussion

Was this recent? I'm well behind in my thread reading.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:50 AM
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Happy now?

Prufrocky mood

I've been waiting for and riding the bus a lot lately, and since for the brief period when I was memorizing poetry I generally recited it only to myself, silently, while waiting for buses, I've been trying to see how much I still remember.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:52 AM
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352.1 to people wanting more lines from the poem.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:52 AM
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I think there have been a few. Here's one.


Posted by: paranoid android | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:54 AM
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Yes. 350.1 is especially pleasing because I've envisioned that particular death for myself before.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:55 AM
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355 to 353, I seem to have lost my italics.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:55 AM
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Why does the little newsstand store need to know my flight number and whether I'm planning to consume the beverage I'm buying before or during my flight? The Dutch are enigmatic.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 1:08 AM
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I remember destroying the bottom of a pair of pants in junior high when I rode to school before learning to roll up the side by the chain.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 1:09 AM
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Probably because they're not allowed to sell to you after X minutes before departure. And possibly because if you're planning on consuming it on board it will need to be passed through security.


Posted by: wispa | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 1:34 AM
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Descriptivists are right that language is what people say or write, but surely the point is that prescriptive usages are widely used as tribal markers. And always have been.


Posted by: OFE | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 5:26 AM
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re: 269

Christ, yes, "grow your business" could easily drive me to murder. Not so much prescriptive versus descriptive as a matter of aesthetics, and some uses of English are just ugly, dammit.

I've been reading and re-reading a bunch of old (mostly) dead philosophers recently* and I've been struck by how elegant some of their prose is, and how badly a lot of contemporary philosophers write by comparison.

* as part of Operation-Revive-Brain-by-Reading Philosophy-Entirely-Unrelated-to-One's-Area-of-Research ...


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 5:37 AM
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But in my own professional writing, I always feel like it's better to be relatively informal and explain things in the way I would explain it to someone one-on-one standing in front of a blackboard. Mostly because I find that the papers I learn the most from are the ones written in that way. But this impulse always gets thwarted by the "rules", many of which seem to be aimed at making things dry and dull

I heart you for this.

Re: passive voice -- there are indeed times when you want to obscure the actor. The key is recognizing that this is what you are doing and making a deliberate choice.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 5:38 AM
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re: academic prose

One of my D.Phil examiners had a real hostility to the use of 'intention' in academic writing. In a couple of places I'd written things like, "In the follow section I intend to demonstrate the incoherence of $X, before coming back to discuss $Y in the light of $Z", or, "It is my intention to show in sections 1 and 2 how $bloke's views on $stuff, are incompatible with the orthodox view that $blah". Apparently that was utterly unacceptable.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 5:45 AM
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Passive voice was deliberately chosen as was intended.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 5:49 AM
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And ttaM, I do understand the impulse to give read the benefit of the doubt. 14 *is* facially innocuous, perhaps even cliche. But her own clarification later on was that it was indeed meant to cast aspersions. She missed the affection behind people's "crazy things my mom does" stories and instead read these stories as complaints, which she felt compelled to chastise. "If you people were fully adult, with dead parents, you wouldn't say such things!" Which follows a pretty consistent pattern: misunderstand a person, make no attempt to clarify or attempt a generous reading, cast sweeping moral judgment, express shock that people take offense at being morally judged based on inaccurate perceptions. Despite many offers of guidance, read prefers not to attempt to tread more cautiously and continues to rush to judgment. And why should she do otherwise? After all, this is all a work of fiction to her, not real people with real feelings.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 5:59 AM
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Yeah, I understand, given past comments, why she doesn't get cut as much slack as other people, but sometimes it seems a bit uncharitable even given that, and I'm more or less in agreement with what Stanley has to say in 108.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 6:09 AM
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Yeah, I guess I'm just inclined to believe 108 is an intended result.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 6:45 AM
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359: you mean the American "if you buy a liquid after going through security, it's fine to take it on a plane" rule doesn't apply in the EU?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 7:03 AM
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re: 368

No, it's the same in Europe. Once you've gone through security you can buy liquids. Sometimes they ask for flight numbers for tax reasons, though.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 7:08 AM
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OFE is right in 360, and that link is interesting. (And the Wikipedia page itself links to a definition of "good old boy networks" which is a perfect example of the lack of citation we were discussing last night.)

there are indeed times when you want to obscure the actor.

One of my chief frustrations with other people's writing is exactly this.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 7:09 AM
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The list of U and non-U terms in that wiki article is interesting. I'm from about as non-U a background as you can image [working class, and Scottish] but my own idiolect features many of the U rather than non-U alternatives as standard.

I wonder how much of that is a direct influence of precisely that type of article [Mitford's, I mean] and its suffusion through the popular media?


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 7:37 AM
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but my own idiolect features many of the U rather than non-U alternatives as standard.

Wouldn't that more likely be related to the fact that the U/non-U distinction was supposed to be between the aristocracy and the middle class, rather than between the middle class and the working class? The non-U usage tends to be fussy and Frenchified (e.g., 'serviette' rather than 'napkin'), while the U usage is supposed to be simpler and less pretentious.

I'd figure you'd expect a working-class dialect to be largely U, and the remainder usages that don't show up as non-U either, but as off both lists.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 7:46 AM
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OT -- we picked apples yesterday and intend to make pie today. Any help re: crust recipes? I recall earlier threads in which lard is urged. I make terrible crust.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:10 AM
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Got a food processor and a recipe that calls for it? Those are pretty foolproof.

If not, I can type in Rose Levy Berenbaum's recipe, which is baroque and annoying, but works reliably (from the point of view of another pie-crust impaired cook).


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:15 AM
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374a: I don't, but we have to go to the store first anyway and I've wished I had one on more than one occasion... So if I google "pie crust" and "food processor," I should be safe?


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:20 AM
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Hah, Berenbaum's recipe is online, both by hand and with a food processor. The by hand directions work great, as do the foodprocessor directions.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:23 AM
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Thank you! I will save you a slice. Is pastry flour the same thing as cake flour?


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:29 AM
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her own clarification later on was that it was indeed meant to cast aspersions.
i like people still talk about me, but 'clarification' comes always after some heated conversation, why is that, i don't understand
i say something not meaning any offense, people take offense, i try to understand what offended them, the offended people say me to shut up or go away
just for the record, i say things not aiming that from the beginning as like some critique of someone particular, but when one takes offense i feel the need to explain my thought then it becomes a fight
if i was wrong i apologize, if i feel i'm right i stand by my thought, just no need to offer any guidances
if 'chastising' offends you, your 'guidance' does the same to me
i hope it clarifies things, i'm not that fight-mongerish as people paint me, just it seems to me there is no need to get defensive everytime i say something different


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:37 AM
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re: 372

There may be an element of that, yeah, and also, being Scottish the various class-markers are sometimes somewhat orthogonal to the distinctions drawn in English English.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:42 AM
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377: Pastry flour is all-purpose with maybe 1/4 replaced with cake -- RLB has a formula, but I mostly just use all-purpose and throw some cake in.

378: Like everything else, it's a communication problem. You say things that offend people, they get offended, and because it's happened a fair amount in the past people probably get offended at you more easily than at someone they hadn't interacted with in the past.

I wouldn't worry about it too much -- no one with any power to make you shut up and go away is asking you to, you should stay and say what you like. All that's going on is a mutual exchange of annoyance: you annoy people and are annoyed by their reactions to you. To the extent you're happy with standing by your intitial remarks, nothing particularly serious is happening, just a little mutual bristling.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:46 AM
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Any help re: crust recipes?

I have had good luck with the Cook's Illustrated recipe that uses vodka. Much less finicky to work with then most pie crust recipes in my opinion.


Posted by: CJB | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:48 AM
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I wonder if the vodka serves the same purpose as RLB's vinegar -- some kind of tenderizing agent.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:50 AM
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Here is a link Pie crust


Posted by: CJB | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:50 AM
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Shorter read: Offense in the face of my offensiveness is no virtue, defensiveness in defense of my defensiveness is no vice.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:51 AM
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I wonder if the vodka serves the same purpose as RLB's vinegar -- some kind of tenderizing agent.

It adds "moisture" to the dough making it easier to work, but the alcohol doesn't form gluten so it does help keep the dough more tender.


Posted by: CJB | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:53 AM
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I actually thought the whole thread would be about the religiousness of the babysitters. I am terrible about predicting these things.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:04 AM
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378: read, my intent in pointing out your later 'clarification,' was this: M/tch's response to 14 looked perhaps a bit rash/oversensitive -- he assumed you meant something critical when you might have meant something else. Your clarification appears to confirm that M/tch, in fact, read you correctly. Which is why I disagree with those who think the issue is one of miscommunication. The problem, in my view, is that you say offensive things and then play victim when people get offended.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:08 AM
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I agree with Di that there was no communication error.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:18 AM
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384, 385 well if to talk about intentions
some general observation again: which i observe on myself, 'my' observations are always observations only on me, don't know anyone better than me coz
so, people get defensive if the offensive thought occured to them before and they don't like to be associated with the thought, projection etc
if one never thought the offensive thought before by themselves, it just doesn't occur to them to get offended/defensive
so knowing that people take offense at the thought is like crediting the people of their not-wanting to be associated with the offensive thought and it's a positive thing characterizing them
if they thought the offensive thought before and justify/continue to stand by it, then okay, there will be a plain fight
if people do not take any offense implied to them by the 'intended attack' they are clear of the thought and do not get defensive, but i said that already
i never intend to bait people in these conversations, but if it becomes that then what to do, have to play my part
about playing the 'victim', perhaps one'd understand when one is told to shut up or go away, it's like giving the birth, so you wouldn't understand / a joke


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:20 AM
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389: You've said a couple of times that you're really not interested in being told how to behave, so I'm not going to. But the way you react, once one of these interactions starts, looks like baiting people, even if you don't mean it that way.

You should keep on reacting however you like, but to the extent that you keep reacting the same way, people will react to you as if they're being baited.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:27 AM
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389: The part that bothered me was when you said "I don't understand people complaining about their parents."

It really bothers me that this silly, gentle story about Mom's foibles would seem like evidence that I don't fully appreciate her. That there will be a lesson for me when she dies.

You apologized yesterday, and I accepted your apology, so you and I are square.

I bring this line up because in 389 you said you're always talking about yourself, but when you said "I don't understand people complaining about their parents" you were clearly talking about me.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:30 AM
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Y'all sure are easily trolled.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:40 AM
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I think Cassidy just woke up and your wife decided not to take Noah out to a movie after all.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:43 AM
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389 is utterly disingenuous in light of 21, 24. Very UNG-like, frankly.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:45 AM
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392 is wildly correct.

Except in the case of M/tch. He wasn't getting trolled, exactly. He was doing something subtly different.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:47 AM
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Getting into online fights for the heck of it? No one in this repeated interaction seems to be learning from experience.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:53 AM
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You should keep on reacting however you like, but to the extent that you keep reacting the same way, people will react to you as if they're being baited.
i have no problem with that
i think i've explained all i could, so continuation of this conversation i'd consider as baiting me


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:54 AM
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Given that you "have no problem with that", there's no problem, then, whether the conversation continues or doesn't.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:00 AM
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Shorter 397.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:01 AM
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400!


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:02 AM
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Getting into online fights for the heck of it?

Little bit of a prosiac way to put it.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:03 AM
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I am nothing if not prosaic.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:09 AM
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386: I was expecting a series of jokes riffing on "In Christ, Babysitter". Like, "Regarding Augustine, Paperboy", or "To Mary, VCR Programmer".


Posted by: Merganser | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:18 AM
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396: I thought that was the point of the internet. That and pie.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:23 AM
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Mmmm, pie.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:40 AM
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386

I actually thought the whole thread would be about the religiousness of the babysitters. ...

Watch out for secret baptisms.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:45 AM
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Funny! Although, do Protestants do that? I'd associate stealth baby-baptism with conservative Catholics. I think of the kind of Christian heebie's probably dealing with in Texas as more of the adult baptism type.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:49 AM
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408

Protestant attitudes toward baptism are kind of all over the map. It's one of the major reasons there are so many Protestant denominations, in fact.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:52 AM
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409

Y'all sure are easily trolled.

Only those who actually respond!


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:23 AM
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On the crust front, I finally found a recipe that works for me. It's more time intensive, as you let the dough sit at room temperature for an hour and then chill it, but before hitting upon this recipe's instructions* I could not roll out the damn crust well to save my life. The sitting at room temperature bit gives time for the gluten to do whatever it is that it does. Or something. (I've forgotten the food science justification.)

*The ingredients are totally normal, I think it's just the sitting out that helped me.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:29 AM
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Rory is making salsa; I'm on pie. We will find out in a few hours how LB's recipe above works if you are an idiot and misread "baking powder" as baking soda. (Hoping a little extra cider vinegar helps offset that.)



Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 12:20 PM
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392, indeed. I find it incredibly easy to ignore the comments of regulars who annoy me, and it keeps me blissfully bristle-free. Harder to ignore are large sections of threads I'd otherwise like to read, which have been rendered boring by pointless bickering.

Anyway! I recently had the experience of trying to explain the difference between desktop client vs. web app email to a grandmotherly person who speaks only rudimentary English. It was really hard; in fact, I believe I failed. Not having the underlying metaphors to refer to (e.g., "client," "browser") and no easy way to get to them b/c of the language was the killer.

My mother has just enough computer knowledge and unjustified confidence to be dangerous, and to make trying to help her impossible. Every time we try to have a trouble-shooting session over the phone or skype, she won't stop trying things on her own while I'm attempting to guide her.


Posted by: piminnowcheez | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 1:46 PM
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so many Protestant denominations, in fact.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 2:08 PM
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On the crust front

I am entertaining myself by imagining this phrase used in a war context.


Posted by: piminnowcheez | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 2:20 PM
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372: I imagine that a lot of the class distinctions in that article are simply outdated after 55 years.


Posted by: paranoid android | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 2:30 PM
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re: 415

You'd be surprised (or maybe not!) how much currency they still sometimes seem to have, even if some of the details may have changed.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 2:34 PM
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Except in the case of M/tch. He wasn't getting trolled, exactly. He was doing something subtly different.

Aw crap. Caught. Apparently not subtle enough. Have to keep practicing.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 4:08 PM
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Pie crust turned out great. Easy, and great.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 4:10 PM
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418: Congratulations! Which recipe did you end up using?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 4:12 PM
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Dude, M/tch, read the thread.

We will find out in a few hours how LB's recipe above works


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 4:13 PM
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421

(Being a little bitch is quite fun, it turns out.)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 4:14 PM
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The link in 376. With the slight modification of baking soda instead of baking powder. A, um, very deliberate substitution...


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 4:16 PM
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I find it incredibly easy to ignore the comments of regulars who annoy me, and it keeps me blissfully bristle-free. Harder to ignore are large sections of threads I'd otherwise like to read, which have been rendered boring by pointless bickering.

Eh, it's easier to ignore annoying comments or think of something as pointless bickering when it's not directed personally at you. Also, see the Willpower thread.

I certainly do a lot of ignoring comments I find annoying, but I also don't think there's anything wrong with people speaking up about or employing sarcasm towards or doing whatever for comments they disagree with or think are wrong.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 4:22 PM
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Many historians believe that the extreme temperatures experienced over the long duration of battle on the Crust Front resulted in greatly shortening the Pie war.


Posted by: piminnowcheez | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 4:23 PM
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Rose Levy Berenbaum has mystic powers. The recipes look insanely complicated and annoying, but when you follow them, they work flawlessly.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 4:23 PM
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I certainly do a lot of ignoring comments I find annoying

You're talking about #420, aren't you?


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 4:23 PM
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Dude, M/tch, read the thread.

I thought that 411 was just a work of fiction.

Oh wait, I mean: Stop telling me what to do!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 4:24 PM
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426: Nope, I'm sober as a judge.

425: Yep. I've got all three of her Bibles, and while I find her deeply annoying as a cookbook person, they do work.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 4:25 PM
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423: Like I said to read, I'm not going to tell you to change your mode of communication. In this particular instance, though, it seems clear that read is not taking your input in a spirit of "Huh, M/tch is annoyed. Maybe I shouldn't have said that and will back off now," but rather in a spirit of "M/tch is out to get me, so now we'll bicker for awhile." If you enjoy the bickering, go for it, but you're certainly not doing anything to reduce the incidence of read saying things you wish she wouldn't.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 4:27 PM
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428: I haven't done much with the Bread Bible -- I've looked at most of the recipes and decided that I'm just not buying that many kinds of flour. But the Cake and Pie and Pastry Bibles? Spectacular. I have my eye on the cookie book as well, but then I'd just start making more cookies, and that's probably a bad idea.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 4:29 PM
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but I also don't think there's anything wrong with people speaking up about or employing sarcasm towards or doing whatever for comments they disagree with or think are wrong

I'll see you your "don't think there's anything wrong" and raise you an "I think it can be good to speak up when personal shit is directed at people who don't deserve it, not because it is going to have any effect on the shit-director, but because it's good to support people who don't deserve to be shat at."


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 4:30 PM
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but you're certainly not doing anything to reduce the incidence of read saying things you wish she wouldn't.

Yeah, patient explanations have been tried a million ways and times by many people here, including me, and haven't really resulted in much of anything. I have no expectations anymore on that front when it comes to read.

Generally I ignore her when I think she's being annoying/shitty, but sometimes I feel like responding to something she's said that I dislike or think is ridiculous.

15 wasn't actually a response to 14, as 14 hadn't appeared in my browser window yet. 15 was just doing more of the "sigh, moms" schtick plus adding a verboten Seinfeld reference. I did indeed find 14 foolish and annoying once I read it, but didn't feel like addressing it since I knew it wouldn't do any good. But 16 was directed at me, and I didn't feel like sitting on my hands over it.

And yes, I can see how it's perfectly reasonable to see 15 as a response to 14.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 4:42 PM
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I agree with 431, and it goes both ways. In this thread, ttaM thought read was being treated unfairly, and spoke up about it. I disagree with him about that judgment, obviously, but I have no problem with his speaking it.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 4:49 PM
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|| Oddly apt. |>


Posted by: paranoid android | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 5:01 PM
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433

... In this thread, ttaM thought read was being treated unfairly, and spoke up about it ...

For the record I also think read is being treated unfairly. The problem is there is a group of people here who dislike read and whenever one of them disagrees with read about something the others pile on in support. Which seems a bit unsporting to me.

Also mobs are known for being more agressive and less intelligent than their individual members. I don't think the denunciations of read are very interesting.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 6:36 PM
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The only thing that's interesting to me about the read-related bickering is the question of so-called nannying. We've been told before that nannying -- telling people what they may and may not say, telling people to shut up -- is unwelcome. I've understood read to have said several times that she will not be nannied in this way, and for some reason she's been, well, nannied in response.

Yes, there are nuances, and they're important. Which goes toward the general point that "no nannying!" is a bit ridiculous as a general blog principle unless you actually mean it.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 6:49 PM
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437

I've understood read to have said several times that she will not be nannied in this way, and for some reason she's been, well, nannied in response.

Huh. In the course of squabbling with people, read has laid down standards for how they should talk to her and those standards have been ignored? I am, somehow, unsurprised by this.

And 'no nannying' is, as you say, a silly rule.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 7:03 PM
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||
What is the world coming to when a new 5-pound hunk of trash by Dan Brown gets a jolly front page "review" in the NYT (online) by Janet Maslin? Is the woman senile? Or does she just need a new pair of shoes?
|>


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 7:13 PM
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438: Don't you read Revelation? Respectful reviews of Dan Brown come in between the rain of locusts and the sea turning to blood.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 7:20 PM
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It is an exceptionally stupid review, replete with dreadful turns of phrase such as "This time he again enlivens his story with amazing imagery."


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 7:21 PM
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437.last: Comity! With the caveat that people who are nannied can stick out their tongues and say "naaahhhh!" (or however you spell that) and then accept the consequences. Every blog needs a good fight now and then. We can't all just make pie together all the time (boring).


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 7:23 PM
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Maybe Maslin has warm feelings about Dan Brown because he represents the possibility of getting fame, fortune, and affection in return for producing appallingly clunky prose.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 7:23 PM
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443

Every blog needs a good fight now and then.

I was sort of thinking this, too. It's our birthers movement.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 7:25 PM
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444

The problem is there is a group of people here who dislike read and whenever one of them disagrees with read about something the others pile on in support.

I and heebie both bickered directly with read in this thread. I don't see much "piling on" though. Plenty of people participated in a typical whimsical Unfogged manner or voiced their own opinions, but those opinions were by no means uniform. And I'm not really seeing how voicing disagreement with read's opinions or how she behaves qualifies as "denunciations".


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 7:27 PM
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443: I can't be a birther. I haven't had a kid yet.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 7:30 PM
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445: You won't understand that there's nothing really to get about having a kid until you have one.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 7:32 PM
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447

446: Racist.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 7:33 PM
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448

You mean Raiseist.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 7:34 PM
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448: Oh, and now you're making fun of ebonics?

Stay classy, breeder.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 7:35 PM
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Maybe Maslin is awed by the fact that Brown is making millions for writing a giant Mary Sue:

Why is Langdon in such demand? He's barely off the plane when a woman brings up his last book, the one about the church and the sacred feminine: it seems to have created some kind of stir. "What a delicious scandal that one caused!" she says. "You do enjoy putting the fox in the henhouse!"

Or by his bracingly naturalistic dialogue.


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 7:36 PM
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450: This one sounds Mary Sueier than his previous works, but all his crap is very very Mary Sue.

Um, or so I've heard.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 7:39 PM
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452

Mary Susist.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 7:57 PM
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453

417 could have been funnier. I, on behalf of the audience, am demanding.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:05 PM
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452: Sousaphone.

453: Sometimes I can only satisfice.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:08 PM
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454: The best I can ever do is Simonize.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:21 PM
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456

In Reno, I ripped a sock, just to watch it die.

max
['And then I darned it.']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:26 PM
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455: Eh, it beats Garfunkeling.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:29 PM
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458

Well I stubbed my toe in Reno, just to hear me cry.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:37 PM
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459

Well I brought a toddler to Reno, just to ask me "why? why?"


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:37 PM
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460

Well I attended a math conference in Reno, just to discuss pi.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:38 PM
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461

Well I make these dumb jokes about Reno, just to make you all sigh.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:39 PM
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462

I think it's pretty obvious why I shot heebie in Reno.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:40 PM
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463

Well I discuss denying health care that humanity demands we provide to undocumented workers, just to hear you shout "YOU LIE!"


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:41 PM
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464

I mean, if there's one thing I can't stand, it's a really bad sousaphonist.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:41 PM
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And then the octopus said, "Play it? I'm just trying to figure out how to get it's skirt off!"


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:43 PM
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466

And then SHE said, "yeah, but they hold you funny."


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:46 PM
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467

And then the extra apostrophe was like "check, please!"


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:47 PM
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468

I find the expectation that people who are being personally attacked here, or elsewhere for that matter, should remain silent, very odd. But that's probably because I'm not well-versed in the teachings of Jesus Christ. Maybe I should see if heebie's babysitter will share with me the Good Word.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:48 PM
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And then I went to bed but not in Reno, just so that I'd be able to function tomorrow after waking up with Hawaiian Punch throughout the night and then at 6 am, aye.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:48 PM
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468: You're horrible and degenerate, ari. Now shut up.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:50 PM
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aye

Be it Talk Like a Pirate Day already?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:52 PM
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472

I'm turning the other cheek, M/tch/ell.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:52 PM
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473

That's Mai Tai Chi Chi Bitchell to you, ari.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:53 PM
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I don't see much "piling on" though.

Er, megan piling in because she's still shitty with read from ages ago kinda struck me as not-helpful, to be honest.

I get that Megan doesn't like read's behaviour, but it seems a bit eh.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:54 PM
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Yep, as long as you're going that route, ari, you might as well use my full Christian name.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:54 PM
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Hey, I should weigh in on the original stupid! To wit: I thnk read's being a jerk, but I like jerks.

Solved!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:56 PM
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477

I don't know how to spell Old Scratch, I'm afraid.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:56 PM
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because she's still shitty with read from ages ago

How exactly have you deduced this?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:56 PM
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477: Simple: Old Scratch. Just like it sounds.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 8:58 PM
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480

More seriously, I wish I could sigh, count to ten, and then ignore every barb that comes my way. Maybe when I'm a bit more evolved. But really, I'm not sure I want to live like that. Or, more accurately, I'm not sure I want to hang out in communities where the assholes don't get called on their assholishness. I say that even though I know that some significant percentage of people here think that I'm an asshole. Which is to say, I was glad when several people jumped on me for jumping on gswift a few weeks (months? years? decades?) back. I was out of line. It was good for me, and good for the community, to hear about it. By contrast, when people have asked me to back down when bob has said something nasty about me*, I've not taken it very well.

* Which hasn't happened in some time. And I'm really quite grateful for that. I don't miss the sparring at all. But I'm still not willing to let especially egregious insults stand unanswered. Again, because I haven't carefully read the New Testament.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:06 PM
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481

I used to use English Leather myself.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:08 PM
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482

Ari, you're super fat.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:10 PM
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480: More seriously, I wish I could sigh, count to ten, and then ignore every barb that comes my way

My history professor is a fish.


Posted by: Vardaman Bundren | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:11 PM
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484

A super fat fish.


Posted by: Vardaman Bundren | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:12 PM
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480: God, but that "turning the other cheek" bit is a tough one to learn. First you have to figure out whether this occasion is one where you'd be better off keeping your mouth shut and walking away. And once you get good at figuring that out, you still have to figure out how to put a lid on that adrenaline rush and make an actual deliberate decision.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:14 PM
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486

How did Faulkner worm his way into this discussion?


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:15 PM
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487

485: Y'know, I do it all the time with people I like. When friends say shitty things to me, I'm quite good at doing the "is it worth replying" math. When my wife isn't especially nice, I almost never reply in kind. Because, after all, what's the margin in escalating a fight? People have bad days, after all. And she cuts me plenty slack for being such a fat fish. But when serial assholes tote out their tired act, I'm not sure why the aggrieved party should be expected to do anything other than retaliate. People don't like it? Fine, step in and police the community. Or ignore the fight. Whatever. But don't wring your hands after the fact.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:19 PM
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488

Through his mastery of narrative hooks.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:19 PM
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488: I set 'em up, you knock 'em down. Who says good help is hard to find?


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:19 PM
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490

No better vector for worms than the super fat fish.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:20 PM
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491

How exactly have you deduced this?

By apply logic to evidence. Look, I really don't want to get all strict and rigorous on this, but I really don't think Megan's being helpful, and I'm sure she disagrees, but eh.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:21 PM
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492

491 is super disingenuous! Fun!

I mean, I'm not even picking a side!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:22 PM
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493

Helpful with what? What is the point? Is there some communal effort toward some defined goal?

Plenty of people on Unfogged have certain habits that can be annoying if you spend any time caring about their comments.

If someone is being too much of an ahole, usually people call it out. But, it takes a lot.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:25 PM
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494

I'm not sure I want to hang out in communities where the assholes don't get called on their assholishness.

I can definitely sympathize with this, but on the other hand, I don't want to hang out in communities where the assholes do get called on their assholishness either. I'd rather find communities without assholes. If that means giving up on a place I otherwise like, so be it. But then, it's been demonstrated several times that I'm extremely conflict-averse.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:25 PM
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495

This is a really great meta thread. You know what else I think? There are a clique of commentes whose style of rhetorical argument is by definition disingenuous. I'm not even kidding. Let's run this.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:27 PM
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496

468, 480: What the hell has any of this to do with the New Testament or Jesus Christ?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:28 PM
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497

Helpful with what? What is the point?

That's exactly the right question. Nobody is going to say anything in these situations that will inspire a kumbaya moment, but I don't think that is what anyone is shooting for.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:28 PM
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498

"commenters". Also, take that to task.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:29 PM
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499

Jesus died for somebody's comments, but not mi-ine.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:30 PM
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496: In that the one option for responding to offensive comments would be "turning the other cheek," an approach advocated by Jesus Christ in the New Testament.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:30 PM
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501

What people should be aiming for, ideally, is an unfogged so totally introspectively pointless that even the people embroiled in the introspective battles don't read the threads.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:30 PM
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502

We love hating each other, but only in strictly defined ways that none of us agree about.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:31 PM
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503

No. We hate loving each other.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:32 PM
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504

496: Read your bible, parsi. It's right there, in the drawer of your bedside table. All shall be revealed. Or so I'm told.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:32 PM
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505

I know it is disingenuous as all get out, but the alternative is to be utterly utterly assholish and nasty and start trawling through the archives and quoting people in great detail, which isn't really fun or sensible.

So I'm not expecting anybody to take that comment seriously & yet I'd feel bad if I didn't say it.

And yes, that is also rather disingenuous and slippery, and I really shouldn't have said if I couldn't back it up, but eh, again, I'm going to be immoral and just leave it there.

Helpful with what? What is the point? Is there some communal effort toward some defined goal?

Well, interesting conversation, or whatever. The lack of a goal doesn't mean there doesn't exist a set of anti-goals. In general, this is an anti-goal situation; in general, people leaving is an anti-goal. In general, things like what Megan has here said are contributory, in my opinion, to anti-goal situations,

But again, that all above is disingenuous and really quite unfair to Megan who isn't here with an opportunity to reply; and I have very little expectation it should be taken seriously.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:32 PM
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506

That Maslin review really is quite something.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:33 PM
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507

I like you, JP, I really do.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:33 PM
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508

um, yeah, me.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:33 PM
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509

507 would be to 499.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:34 PM
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510

486: For every southern boy growing up, it's always just a moment before this discussion starts.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:34 PM
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511

502: A conjecture no less vile argues that it is indifferently inconsequential to affirm or deny the reality of the shadowy corporation, because Babylon is nothing but an infinite game of chance.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:34 PM
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512

505:

Well, sure.

As Teo said, I'm not interested in hanging out with a bunch of assholes.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:35 PM
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513

Good lord, 506 is right. The very first sentence:

One of the theories espoused by Dan Brown's new book is that when many people share the same thought, that thought can have physical effects.

Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:36 PM
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514

You know what's really fun? Ping-pong on Wii sports resort.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:37 PM
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I cant believe mcmc took the time to read the review. But, bc she mentioned it, I went back and read it.

I would assume that Dan Brown's publicist sent her the first draft of that review.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:37 PM
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And it goes on:

Dr. Katherine Solomon specializes in noetic science, with its focus on mind-body connections. She admits that her field is not widely known. But when her story comes out, she suggests, noetics could get the kind of public relations bump that Mr. Brown gave to the Holy Grail.

Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:38 PM
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I propose all commenters be required to meet once a year in a chat room, where by means of a lottery or other game of chance one will be selected to be banned.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:38 PM
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an unfogged so totally introspectively pointless

cf. the archives.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:38 PM
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504: Read your bible, parsi. It's right there, in the drawer of your bedside table. All shall be revealed. Or so I'm told.

Well, I haven't read the bible, and it's not really on my reading list. I don't see the relevance of bringing it up here. Yes, I get the 'turn the other cheek' reference, but I'm sure that sentiment can be found in many other places. I'd rather ditch the Christian/non-Christian allusions altogether.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:39 PM
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Speaking of which, omputer people, how far away are we from relatively affordable, in-home virtual reality? Because I want my orgasmatron.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:39 PM
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Or "computer". Whichever of you has the answer I seek.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:39 PM
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I thought it had been scientifically proven that the NYT book review is, on the whole, if not in every individual review, not fit for the wrapping of fish, fat or otherwise. You'll have to find the cites yourself; I'm not being rigorous.

Actually, I was recently told that the fiction reviews are overall better than the non-fiction.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:40 PM
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519 is, like, an awesome case in point. Like, so awesome, that I have to believe it's a set-up. But then again, maybe not.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:41 PM
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Speaking of which, omputer people, how far away are we from relatively affordable, in-home virtual reality?

Willy Wonka and the Oompa-Loompa Programming Team are rumored to be working on it right now.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:42 PM
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This was a "books of the times" review, I think -- those are generally, in fact, worse.

Actually, I was recently told that the fiction reviews are overall better than the non-fiction.

What the fiction reviews mainly are is few and far between. Irksome.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:42 PM
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522: Tanenhaus really has a lot to answer for. Then again, if he offered me a gig tomorrow, I'd jump at the opportunity. [Replace subjects above with fish and hooks where appropriate, okay?]


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:44 PM
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What do you expect from a review of a Dan Brown book?

"Along with Dean Koontz and the soft-core porn writers, Dan Brown ranks up there as one of the finest writers of our time."


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:45 PM
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523: Case in point of what, pray?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:45 PM
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Not sure why I used brackets rather than parentheses. Mysterious!


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:45 PM
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530

Maybe you were just feeling a little square and unbending.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:46 PM
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515: Renowned author Dan Brown has long been an object of perverse fascination for me, Will.

And the Margaret Dumont character who escapes from a Marx Brother movie to enter Brown's novel and fawn on his alter ego is just so delicious.


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:46 PM
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528: Well, most obviously, nannying. And then also a situation where I wonder if it's worth saying, "Hey, if I want to make silly and obvious jokes about turning the other check, what's it to you?" But really, so long as you don't accuse me of relishing the murder of innocents, or some such thing, I think we're cool. Unless we're not. Whatevs.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:48 PM
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529: Stage directions?


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:48 PM
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mcmc:

I would love to see the following:


"Wow. What a load of crap!"

applies to Common Sense, by Glen Beck, and all Dan Brown books.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:49 PM
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534: Well, yeah.


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:51 PM
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I think a fair review of Dan Brown might consist of, "If you like Dan Brown books, this new Dan Brown book is the Dan Brown book for you." And leave it at that.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:52 PM
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"Fans will be predictably overjoyed, and can rest assured that this Dan Brown novel is indeed a Dan Brown novel."


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:53 PM
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"Some may be tempted to think that this novel was written not by Dan Brown, but by someone using the same name, but rest assured, this is indeed a novel that Dan Brown authored."


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:55 PM
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"They may also like to know that it is, in addition, National Treasure."

Oh, man, I read some other article about how various Masonic entities in DC are preparing to duck and cover their heads when the wave of Dan Brown tourism hits, and there was a specially fantastically crazy bit from a guy who wrote some bestselling guide to one of the other ones. Let me see if I can find it..

"Could he go in the direction of human cloning?" Burstein wonders. "Could some Freemasons . . . could they have known something about the cloning? And now we hear that Dan Brown is interested in the Rosicrucians," a secret society of mystics formed in medieval Europe. "So what does that mean? Some theories say the Rosicrucians had a piece of the cross. Maybe if you had bloodstains on some pieces of the cross, you could clone Christ."


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 9:58 PM
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I get at least two or three people each year calling me about Dan-Brown-related subject matter. That may not sound like a lot. But it's enough.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:01 PM
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"Dan Brown's name is listed as the author of this book!"*

*ghost written by grad students.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:01 PM
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I couldn't bring myself to read the review, it just seemed so tedious—and that's coming from someone who has actually read this entire thread. Take that, Janet Maslin.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:02 PM
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532: But really, so long as you don't accuse me of relishing the murder of innocents, or some such thing, I think we're cool. Unless we're not. Whatevs.

I think that about covers it.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:02 PM
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You should consider going in the direction of human cloning. I bet that would help a lot.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:02 PM
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539: Oh, no. I know that This American Life story about Second Chance the bull. If this is what Revelations predicted as the second coming, it's going to suck even more than I thought.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:03 PM
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Maybe if you had bloodstains on some pieces of the cross, you could clone Christ."

But I bet you'd only be able to reproduce His human nature, not the divine, which is a more subtle substance. So would your cloned Christ be able to do miracles? I very much doubt it. Yes, I doubt it.


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:04 PM
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mcmc is a blasphemer.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:06 PM
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548

Next stop: Turin.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:06 PM
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501: The target has been reached. This place has entered a time warp wherein most everyone has returned to early high school.


Posted by: Biohazard | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:06 PM
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545: Perfect. It will all be going according to plan and then one day instead of feeding the masses he starts zapping them. But they'll still love him. Billy Bob Thornton will play him in the movie.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:08 PM
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549: We return to Transylvania, prepare the transit beam...


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:12 PM
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549: Gah, and it sucks to be sucked in to it. What is wrong with me? Seriously, this place needs to be jettisoned.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:12 PM
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You're free to leave at any time.


Posted by: movementarian collective | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:17 PM
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megan piling in because she's still shitty with read from ages ago kinda struck me as not-helpful, to be honest.

Actually, my objection is less to read (whose comments are fairly easy to skip) then it is to the set-up. My genuine objection is to people acclimating to asshole behavior. I don't want people to be so used to someone who takes potshots that they all laugh and tell the target to ignore it. Even discounting the source, those slings do hurt the target and it is easy for that person to feel isolated when the mode is "oh, that person is [always an ass on the field][an alcoholic][old-time sexist], and we all just let it pass because it isn't worth making a scene every time].

If that statement would be shocking and hurtful from one of the genial commenters, it is also shocking and hurtful from someone who does it regularly. That is the person whose behavior should change, not the community's. Sure, hearing me react to it is annoying, but I'll stop as soon as there is nothing to react to.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:19 PM
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yeah, but i really don't think what you are doing has any positive effect at all, and mainly just makes people more annoyed.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:24 PM
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And anyway, not very many people would argue for avoiding the royal we in formal writing, would they?

Not only would some argue for avoiding it, some would argue for dragging it out back of the barn and shooting it. The royal we in formal writing has no redeeming features.


Posted by: opinionated . | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:26 PM
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Hmph. Parsimon wishes she could quit us. We shall see, Parsimon, if you have the willpower.


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:27 PM
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Well, when I was the target of the professor everyone knew was an asshole, I would have loved for someone to 1. call the professor out and 2. confirm that the behavior really was outrageous. But instead everyone ruefully agreed that "yep, he does stuff like that". Made me fume.

I may not have any influence on the way read addresses us, but I hope I let her target of the day know that someone else thought her statement was inappropriate.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:28 PM
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Megan!


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:36 PM
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560

Just emailed you!


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:37 PM
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I may not have any influence on the way read addresses us, but I hope I let her target of the day know that someone else thought her statement was inappropriate.

Target of the day? That seems to me utterly in bad faith, and I really don't see why you expect read to treat you with any respect; you are quite willing to be very rude to her, so why should she make any effort back?

(also, re:professor, the analogy ban exists for a reason.)


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:37 PM
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I'm sorry. That was too hasty and careless. I should have said "her target that particular day". I don't think she has any goals for daily antagonism.

I dunno, Keir. By this point, I perceive myself to be responding to a chronic situation. I guess I'll have to rely on my general reputation (whatever each of you think that is) and ask you if you're used to seeing me go after people without cause. I don't think I'm usually an aggressor or an initiator, and I'll have to rest on that.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:46 PM
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I do not mean that I am actually asking you, 'cause I don't want a poll on the topic or anything. I meant, in your minds.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:48 PM
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I don't think the analogy ban exists for that reason.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:49 PM
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Even discounting the source, those slings do hurt the target

Really? How is it possible for words to hurt when they come from a source one doesn't respect? I mean, we're not talking about crap going to one's boss or spouse or the like. It's just noise.


Posted by: Biohazard | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 10:52 PM
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566

And yet, 391. (For example.)


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:06 PM
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567

I don't think the analogy ban exists for that reason.

I rather thought it did: because the other situation doesn't throw much light on this one, because there's a collection of pertinent differences.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:06 PM
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I love hating half of you, and hate loving half of you. Which is which? I can't tell.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:12 PM
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The glaring difference is the position of authority, which the professor had and read does not. Other than that, it seems to me that proceeding from empathy into a social situation because you're reminded of a certain feeling is an apt use of qualified analogy.

One could extend the analogy ban to a pretense that unfogged is a sui generis form of interaction, but countless process reflection threads suggest otherwise.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:15 PM
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It helps explain my motivation.

Do you think my concern about acclimating is misplaced? That there's no tendency to say "well, you know, that's just how that person is" for the sake of peace in the comments while someone quietly feels hurt?


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:18 PM
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565: I don't know bob well enough to know if I respect him. I don't know parsimon well enough to know if I respect her. And yet, when bob says outrageous things about my character, I find myself angry. Anger not really being an emotion, I'll assume that's because the outrageous things hurt me. And when parsimon tut-tuts me for the umpteenth time, that makes me angry, too. See above.

My point isn't that anyone should feel bad for me. But I don't want Megan thinking she's alone. When people act like jerks, it's not an entirely victimless crime -- even if I mostly manage to maintain my sense of perspective: it's just the internet, and all that.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:20 PM
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572

Anger's not an emotion?


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:24 PM
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Anger not really being an emotion

So...what is it? A handy desk too? A nutritious treat?


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:25 PM
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tool?


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:25 PM
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575

Wiki, first line:

Anger is an emotion.

Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:28 PM
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576

Someone else can check Aripedia.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:28 PM
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577

My bosom companion? My strength and warmth? The fire in my heart?


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:29 PM
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578

Sticks and stones break the emotions of my bones.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:29 PM
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I think the anger ate ari up from the inside before he could explain what it is to us.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:31 PM
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Anger is a voracious shrew inside Ari!


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:32 PM
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581

577: The light in my loins.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:33 PM
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And I'm not paying $64.95 to find out the whole story.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:34 PM
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583

Books about shrews are expensive.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:36 PM
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I was riffing off the school of psychology (psychiatry?)* that says that anger's not an emotion. But whatever, that wasn't really the point. That said, the point wasn't all that interesting.

* As I think about it, it was almost an inside joke with myself. I had a good friend in Denver, a psychiatrist who used to say this about anger all the time. We often argued about this issue. Ah, the hijinks that ensued. Hey! Look! This story isn't all that interesting either!


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:38 PM
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Sorry, I'm doing my usual "check in on the comments at unfogged while editing something else" thing. The thing I'm editing isn't all that interesting. I detect a theme.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:39 PM
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"Anger is natural; it just isn't necessary", says Jeannette Kasper in her book, Anger Is Not An Emotion. Rather than looking at anger as a feeling, Kasper sees anger as an attack mechanism, through which defensive behaviors trigged by our "safety brain" can destroy marriages, families and work relationships.
Kasper shares her own insight and experience at recognizing this safety brain, which triggers immediately when we feel threatened, as opposed to our "thinking brain" which helps us to reason and plan healthy responses. She doesn't teach anger, but shares her understanding and her experience of it. Her approach teaches how to understand and manage ourselves.
Kasper shows how our safety brain is always on the lookout for danger, and cuts in automatically, often before we realize what is happening. This happens whenever we feel back into a corner, when we need to protect someone, and whenever we are vying for position or power.

Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:39 PM
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anger is an energy, duh.

The glaring difference is the position of authority, which the professor had and read does not. Other than that, it seems to me that proceeding from empathy into a social situation because you're reminded of a certain feeling is an apt use of qualified analogy.

Also, the moral certainty that the professor is consciously being an asshole, the fact that people being sympathetic to Megan wouldn't make everything worse for the rest of society, the fact that the sympathy might make a positive difference, the ability to express sympathy through other means etc etc.

The general fact that the two situations are really quite different, and Megan should make her case based on the facts here, and not drag irrelevancies into it.

i don't think acclimatisation is anything other than a red herring here. the point isn't that we should accept read's not nice, because I reject that idea, or anything. the point is that megan isn't helping. if you want to express solidarity, there's better ways to go about it.

i also think people generally aren't particularly correct to read, and it can really fuck me off when people act in ways that seem to presume bad faith and so-on.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:39 PM
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Anger is not an Emotion

I've been extremely upset when random idiots on the internet have made unfounded attacks on my good character and intelligence. And it gets worse when internet bystanders don't seem to recognize that the attacks are indeed unfounded.

But fortunately it's not that hard to walk away from the computer.


Posted by: Commenter-in-exile | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:40 PM
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PWNED.


Posted by: ANGRY COMMENTER-IN-EXILE | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:42 PM
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590

Gawd I love Yahoo! Answers.

Question:

Psychopaths have no morals, no emotion. Yet a psychopath can feel anger. Does this mean that anger is not an emotion? If so, does this mean love is not an emotion??? This would mean that psychopaths can indeed feel love.

Best Answer:

i do not believe that anger is an emotion i think anger is a state of mind i think if your angry you can be angry at something like one thing while being sad is something that you feel you can't be sad at one thing it has to be a constant its either your sad or your not if your angry you can be nice to your friends but be angry with your parents right the love thing i dunno i think thats also a state of mind yes i believe psychopaths can indeed feel love

Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:42 PM
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Anger is one letter away from danger, you know. It's also one letter away from banger, hanger, manger, ranger, angel, auger, angler, and a few other words, so you might not want to make too much of that.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:50 PM
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That's it two letters away from mangler is the most interesting thought I've had all night. So thanks for prompting me to do my best work.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:52 PM
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That my best work contains a stray apostrophe s tells you all need to know about the quality of my work this evening. I'd go to bed, but I still have more prose to mangle.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:53 PM
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Well, we're likely to continue to diverge, because I'm pretty serious about the acclimatisation. It is my main issue.

I don't care whether read is nice in her heart. She may be stunningly nice for all I know, but some of the things she says aren't. Now that it is a pattern, I'm objecting.

What would be an appropriate way for me to respond, given my goals? Please tell me very specific ways to 1. condemn the statement, 2. reassure the target (who may not care, but may feel relief) and 3. convey that it also hurts me to hear my friends talked about like that.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:54 PM
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It's two letters away from angora. Mmm, soft, fluffy angora.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:55 PM
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596

Can a prose-mangler feel love?

if your mangly you can be nice to your friends but be mangly with your academmic articels right the love thing i dunno i believe prose manglers can indeed feel love


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 09-13-09 11:56 PM
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... may not care or may feel relief...


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:00 AM
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594: Jay Smooth is cool, but he'd be funnier if he were just a smidge more racist.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:00 AM
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What would be an appropriate way for me to respond, given my goals? Please tell me very specific ways to 1. condemn the statement, 2. reassure the target (who may not care, but may feel relief) and 3. convey that it also hurts me to hear my friends talked about like that.

You are assuming there is a solution to the problem.

You are assuming that I have a duty to propose a positive answer. I don't; I merely have a duty to point out that your attempted solution doesn't work.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:00 AM
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444

... I don't see much "piling on" though. ...

Besides Megan there was Cecily (94), Asilon (97), Di Kotimy (365) and JP Stormcrow (384).


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:06 AM
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It works for my 1-3. It doesn't work in the sense of calming the comments section, but I don't have the tools or authority (editing comments) to do it by force. And read herself is the only person responsible for her behavior.

If "no solution to the problem" shakes out to "letting people repeatedly behave badly and the victims should take their lumps because we all do" then I'm going to be annoying and keep saying "no, that's bullshit."


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:07 AM
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your attempted solution doesn't work.

It seemed more like you were pointing out that you don't like it.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:08 AM
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I really can't fault what Megan said in her first comment. In fact it seems like precisely the right thing to say in the circumstances (certainly the second paragraph; I don't want to re-read the previous comments to check the factual claim in the first).


Posted by: wispa | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:10 AM
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My point isn't that anyone should feel bad for me. But I don't want Megan thinking she's alone. When people act like jerks, it's not an entirely victimless crime -- even if I mostly manage to maintain my sense of perspective: it's just the internet, and all that.

This, and some of Megan's comments above are disingenuous. It's _not_ that everyone agrees that some particular behaviour is an instance of someone behaving like a jerk, but then everyone disagrees about how best to tackle this behaviour, and indeed _whether_ to tackle it. There's disagreement about whether the behaviour is the behaviour of a jerk at all.

Or, in other words, what Keir said in 587.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:11 AM
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My comments are sincere on my part; I think I've been consistent about them for months. You may not think they're the main issue, but I'm not intentionally being disingenuous.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:17 AM
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If "no solution to the problem" shakes out to "letting people repeatedly behave badly and the victims should take their lumps because we all do" then I'm going to be annoying and keep saying "no, that's bullshit."

I think the point isn't that there's no solution, but that there isn't necessarily always a problem to be solved. That isn't advocating quietism about other people's bad behaviour, it's just disagreement about what constitues bad behaviour, and disagreement about when it is occuring or has occurred.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:18 AM
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But fortunately it's not that hard to walk away from the computer.

...proclaimed the commenter as the thread approached 600.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:23 AM
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some of Megan's comments above are disingenuous.

But Megan didn't say "everyone agrees". She's quite specific that she's expressing her opinion.

Some people think read's a jerk, some think she's a troll, some think she's Andy Kaufman. I happen to think she's funny, provocative and rude, and is capable of interacting with and pulling back from the reactions she elicits.

I think things like PASIIR are obnoxious, but nothing in this thread approaches that. She pokes, people swat, the world keeps turning. Very little that she says is beyond the pale, but plenty of it sounds outrageous, and people take mostly polite exception.

there isn't necessarily always a problem to be solved.

This would be one thing if Megan has said, "let's band together to stop read", but she's actually been very cautious about owning her responses. To me, it sounds like you're saying she's not got a right to her responses.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:26 AM
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604: You'll note that I was responding to 565. So wait, who's disingenuous?


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:28 AM
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607: This thread has reminded me, again, that I was out of line the last time the two of us interacted. Sorry about that.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:30 AM
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Shoot. I don't want to discuss specific comments without read here.

What would generally constitute bad online behavior?
attacking the speaker and not the comment/content
digging in and escalating
willful misinterpretation
presuming bad faith/bad character
dodging the points/moving the goalpost
overgeneralization

Context could mitigate most of those, including on-going antagonisms and a forum where being contentious is explicitly OK.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:31 AM
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what has happened to the font? is something wrong with my browser? I am trapped in some sans-serif hell! I went to a nice chinese temple today, maybe I can appeal to the duke of hell for exit from this hell into another one, like the hell of the iron mortar and pestles. but then again...


Posted by: alameida | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:33 AM
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To me, it sounds like you're saying she's not got a right to her responses.

No, I'm just saying I think she's wrong in her diagnosis of the situation. Just like I said I thought M/tch M/lls was wrong above.

re: 609

I took your second paragraph, specifically:
When people act like jerks, it's not an entirely victimless crime -- even if I mostly manage to maintain my sense of perspective: it's just the internet, and all that.
to be a general comment, rather than tightly directed solely at 565.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:34 AM
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468

I find the expectation that people who are being personally attacked here, or elsewhere for that matter, should remain silent, very odd. ...

I don't expect this but I think it would be nice if people didn't go nuclear unless they were sure they being personally attacked. Which means obvious attacks as a lot of "subtle digs" are not in fact intentional personal attacks.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:36 AM
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As penance, ari, dedicate Mrs. Officer to gswift.

And she know I'm raw, she know it from the street
And all she want me to do is fuck the police

I'm to bed. Wish me luck, I have an interview tomorrow.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:39 AM
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My comments are sincere on my part; I think I've been consistent about them for months. You may not think they're the main issue, but I'm not intentionally being disingenuous.

I don't care if you're sincere or not. Good intentions are not enough. To take the professor example, it really sheds no light on the situation; the only thing it actually does is some rather basic semiotic connotation whereby you get to look like the poor kid getting picked on by the professor, which is to put it bluntly bullshit. In particular, there's a whole bunch of annoying assumptions being smuggled in under that cover.

But I doubt you meant to do that; it would take far more evil geniusness than you posses. It merely suffices that it does that for me to feel it isn't the sort of thing you should say.

The thing is that there is a pattern to this behaviour, and you can't pretend otherwise, You can't act like we're all atomised individuals and talk about community and pitching in when people are being badly treated. For instance, if you think I'm against pointing out when people are being dickish, what do you think I'm doing here? The issue is not if any individual is right or wrong; the issue is the communal action.

In particular, stuff like `target of the day' really really really fucks me off. It's offensive bullshit that begs so many questions I think it takes a degree of shamelessness to treat someone like that and then carry on chastising them. The apology really isn't enough either, tbh. And yet, I think I was the only one who expressed any disagreement with that, which rather makes me think that if you want to stand up for a pure anti-dickishness, there's a flaw in that plan, viz. it failed miserably here, because yeah.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:40 AM
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I'm just saying I think she's wrong in her diagnosis of the situation. Just like I said I thought M/tch M/lls was wrong above.

Very fair, but IMHO could be clearer.

gnight


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:41 AM
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607: This thread has reminded me, again, that I was out of line the last time the two of us interacted. Sorry about that.

No apology needed. I wasn't being very cordial, and it wasn't your fault.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:42 AM
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`You' in that above comment is rather dodge; first two pars it's Megan, and then it is generic.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:42 AM
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613: Well, given given that I made it clear that I was explicitly responding to comment 565, I'll continue to take exception to being called disingenuous. I mean, in the spirit of the discussion.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:43 AM
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618: That's very decent of you. But like I said at the time, I was totally pissed about other things, things related to the thread, and thus very likely misdirected my anger at you, who had no part in the other things that were pissing me off. Poor form on my part. I'll send you a copy of the new Dan Brown book to make up for my bad behavior.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:45 AM
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594

I don't care whether read is nice in her heart. She may be stunningly nice for all I know, but some of the things she says aren't. Now that it is a pattern, I'm objecting.

The pattern I see is read is feuding with a bunch of people here and as is often the case both sides aren't covering themselves in glory.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:46 AM
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Heh. I pretty much did the same thing. No posting while angry!


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:47 AM
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let's get serious here, people, does everyone else's unfogged look fine and mine alone is in some other font? this is bothering me.


Posted by: alameida | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:48 AM
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I think we should all just agree that everyone is right and we're all talking past each other. And go to bed.


Posted by: paranoid android | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:48 AM
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I found 616 unintelligible.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:50 AM
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re: 620

Really, now you are just being silly.

565 is directed at your interaction with Bob, but your second paragraph references Megan. It's pretty hard to read that as anything other than a fairly general comment re: people being jerks on the internet.

re: 624

I've had the same thing happen in the past. It's some sort of css/cookie related thing, I think. Clearing cookies and restarting my browser fixed it.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:50 AM
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624: My beloved serifs still here, alameida. Maybe the Narnian government banned them for being a danger to the public order?


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:52 AM
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In honesty I think the solution is for everybody to install that Greasemonkey script and filter out the commenters they don't want to see. Best for everyone's sanity and cordiality. It's not ideal, since it will let the cruel nasty bullshit go uncalled, but it'll avoid both hurt and these interminable meta-discussions where people talk past each other and are utterly unable to comprehend the perspective of the barbarians.


Posted by: wispa | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:53 AM
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625: Nope. Megan is right. And read is wrong. bob, to the extent that he's stopped accusing me of having propped up South African apartheid in the early 80s, is right (he's probably right about a lot of other things too, but that's beyond the scope of this discussion). And I'm wrong for having been a jerk to gswift. k-sky is right for something or other -- just because. John Emerson, meanwhile, is wrong for having left. Oh, and alameida's also wrong for trying to scare us all into sharing her flashback. I can keep going, if you'd like.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:54 AM
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Walt, if you'd care to elaborate?

(That comment isn't going in the Best Of, I can say that much...)


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:55 AM
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627: No, actually my read is that you're being willfully obtuse and/or digging in. (See how this whole perspective thing works? It's fancy.) Biohazard made a point about how easy it is to laugh off assholishness when you don't respect the source. And I said, to biohazard, that it's really not that simple. Or that maybe it's that simple for some people, but that, like Megan, I don't find it simple to laugh off some of what gets said about me around here.

And then you called me disingenuous! Fun times!


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:01 AM
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I think we should all just agree that everyone is being disingenuous and we're all talking past each other. And go to bed.


Posted by: paranoid android | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:03 AM
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To be clear, ttaM, I don't really care very much about my original comment. But given the nature of the discussion, no matter how mind-numbing it may be, I'm not excited about being called a hypocrite.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:04 AM
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re: 632

Heh, maybe we should just leave it, eh? Clearly this perspective thing is causing me difficulty, and the perspective I'm adopting now isn't a very pleasant one.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:05 AM
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Er, you called me disingenuous. Hypocrite is in the other thing I'm doing. Oops, see above about my flailing.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:07 AM
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635: Happy, as ever, to agree to disagree.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:08 AM
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Alameida, I'm seeing the standard font.

Keir, I'd be happy to give other examples of when I've seen the phenomenon happen, but you're right that no analogy would be a perfect reflection. I've also made a few clean attempts at directly describing the situation here, so we can refer to that to discuss whether it is going on. I thought ttaM's summary: "advocating quietism about other people's bad behaviour," was a good one. If the professor example bothers you, I'm happy for us to strike it.

I've already said what I meant about "target of the day". I was typing too fast; shouldn't have phrased it that way

Finally:
The thing is that there is a pattern to this behaviour, and you can't pretend otherwise, You can't act like we're all atomised individuals and talk about community and pitching in when people are being badly treated.

You're objecting to "piling on"? Honestly asking here, because I'm guessing "pitching in" is British slang saying that.

To what do you attribute the "pitching in"? Because the cool people are doing it, so everyone loves to slam the outsider? Because we're all just a little bit racist (that's a quote from a song, intended to be a gentle way to get at the same thought)? Because Unfogged looooooves to take sides? Because we're getting off a little on kicking the down person and it feels good to be in the mob?

Those would be super sucky motives, but for all that I can tell of myself, they aren't mine. Mine are that I've resolved ttaM's first question (is there bad behavior) to my satisfaction and I've moved on to futilely saying I don't like it. I don't know others' but I do note that of the people cited in 600, at least two of them were people that read previously said shitty things to. It may be that they just don't like seeing that, and she's said enough shitty things to enough people that when they all speak up, it looks like "pitching in".


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:08 AM
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re: 634

I didn't say you were a hypocrite. My comment re: disingenousness was re: a bunch of comments that seemed to be addressing one issue [how do we deal with agreed instances of assholery] rather than another [how do we agree about what _are_ instances of assholery]. This seemed to me to be fairly question-begging re: one of the major points at issue. The point wasn't that either you or Megan were insincere but rather that it looks like a wilful disregard for the question. In retrospect, if you really were only addressing 565 rather than making any general comments re: the topic of the thread, then fair enough, that maybe doesn't apply in your case.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:09 AM
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Hee. I thought ttaM was calling me disingenuous.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:10 AM
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re: 641

I kind of was, only in the best possible way, of course. A more charitable way of putting it would be 'talking past your interlocutor'.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:14 AM
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it looks like a wilful disregard for the question.

This is dicey, because it is sucky to get into that question without her here. Otoh, I don't want to dodge what you consider the primary question.

I know my opinion. I was trying to find a decent way to discuss the question in 611 without discussing read tonight. Maybe that's over-sensitivity considering the whole thread.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:15 AM
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`pitching in' -- you know, when there's a whip round, and you all pitch in, or someone breaks a leg and you all pitch in and help them out while it mends or whatever. The community spirit thing.

The problem is that these community standards really aren't evenly enforced; so if you are going to start arguing for community standards, I am going to be very very unimpressed if it only occurs selectively, which is my general observation here.

I've already said what I meant about "target of the day". I was typing too fast; shouldn't have phrased it that way

And yet you did, which rather stands as my point. You can't just pretend you didn't say it, and that nobody really objected, because lo! it was so. Which is quite worrying, I'd imagine, if I was peddling general anti-assholishess as a principle given it seems to have fallen over rather badly in this case and resulted in very much suboptimal results.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:17 AM
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re: 642

I know my opinion. I was trying to find a decent way to discuss the question in 611 without discussing read tonight.

Yeah, fair enough.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:21 AM
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nobody really objected

You mean, in the nine minutes in the middle of the night before you pointed out it was rude and I agreed with you? It was a fast approximation of "person that she attacked that specific day", and then I apologized for secondary connotations it might carry. I didn't mean those.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:22 AM
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This discussion is insane. This thread went like 80% of all read blowup threads: 1) read says something. 2) M/tch gets offended. 3) read begins to deliberately bait M/tch. None of the first 3 things happen, and this thread doesn't happen. And none of these have squat to do with Megan.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:25 AM
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Yes, but Megan's squats are reputed to be epic.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:27 AM
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I mean when she lifts weights. Oh dear, so many possible misinterpretations. And ttaM, I really didn't mean to type hypocrite. That was a rather unfortunate case of my toting something I'm writing about in another window over to this one. Oops.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:28 AM
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well, yes, that's a weak point in the argument, but then that's a general problem with experiments involving humans. I would have been very much surprised if anybody had objected quickly, given it isn't the first time that people have very tendentiously characterised read or her arguments. I mean, that whole acronymy read thing when dsquared buggered off? It took a while before anybody got sharp about that, and even then. (And there's at least one other case I was a bit sharp about before M/tch would admit he was moving very quickly between read's words and what he thought they meant, which again did not impress me.)

And it was an assholish thing to say, so even alone it remains a point against `i'm anti-asshole'; you may be, but that was acting like one.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:30 AM
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`i'm anti-asshole'; you may be, but that was acting like one

OK, fine, cool. Let's use it as an example. After that, when I was called out, did I:

further attack you? (Which in this case would be attacking you for the first time, but assume that I went on to say more asshole things about specifically Keir)
declare that maybe I meant it and maybe I didn't, but you shouldn't care?
attack characteristics I assigned to your nationality?
dig in and defend the concept unto absurdity?

If I had done those further things, would you be justified in thinking me even more of an asshole?


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:35 AM
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I knew what you meant and was flattered by the compliment, Ari.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:36 AM
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it really doesn't matter, the specific point is that the asshole quotient in this thread really wasn't reduced by your intervention, which rather makes me think, what's the point?

The broader point is that people aren't too consistent about this stuff and so on.

but anyway, i'm going to stop talking now, barring any major developments.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:41 AM
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638

... but I do note that of the people cited in 600, at least two of them were people that read previously said shitty things to. ...

So they were holding a grudge?


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:46 AM
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It kinda does matter, since it gets to the initial question that you and ttaM say hasn't been resolved.

I take your point that I can and should be even more careful with my words (although that gets into Witt-ian levels of goodness). I don't actually want to contribute to assholery, but I haven't seen the argument that will convince me to change what I'm doing.

Anyway, I've got to go to sleep. I look forward to seeing the thousand comment count when I get up in the morning.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:48 AM
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Keir, I really have trouble seeing anything wrong with what Megan said, viz., "read, I don't like how you've acted in this thread. I have no authority here, but I personally wish you wouldn't do this. It makes me sad and angry to see someone attack people I like and respect, especially based on the attacker's mis-perceptions.". It's absolutely the right thing to say (my kindergarten teacher would be so proud if I'd produced it), and it really should decrease the asshole quotient when people recalibrate their own behaviour to match it. It's full of "I" statements, about how she feels, and it explains both what the problem she sees is and the effect it has on her, and nothing else. People spend thousands in psychotherapy to get to that point.

You're right that the whole discussion here is going nowhere and never going to go anywhere, because whichever half of the population one isn't in is so clearly horrible and degenerate, and never going to see the light of the one true perspective. But I would be sad all the same if people didn't call out troubling behaviour they saw, provided they'd been clear and polite about it.


Posted by: wispa | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:54 AM
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Thanks lots, Wispa.

I'll use this good note as the one to go to sleep on.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 2:01 AM
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OMG, I wish I could go back in time and decide not to read a single comment in this thread. It is crazy-making! I guess the point, Megan, is that it's your job to police the subtleties of emotional innuendo of your own comments to ensure they contain not a whiff of ill-feeling toward anyone, you monster, while others should never, ever be called out for saying anything, no matter how outrageously offensive and hurtful.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 4:24 AM
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Thank you AWB. Having just arrived at this thread, I shall follow your sage advice (implicit). Byeee.


Posted by: OFE | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 4:28 AM
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it really doesn't matter, the specific point is that the asshole quotient in this thread really wasn't reduced by your intervention, which rather makes me think, what's the point?

I think Megan rather nicely explained what her point was -- essentially providing support and reassurance to people who are hurt by hurtful comments.

the point is that megan isn't helping. if you want to express solidarity, there's better ways to go about it.

Megan isn't helping you; you are not who she is aiming to help here. Having been a target of hurtful comments in the past, I found that responses such as Megan's here were indeed very helpful. What seem to be the alternatives -- minimizing the hurtful conduct, making the injured party responsible for keeping the peace, etc. -- are the opposite of helpful from the perspective of the person feeling hurt.

So they were holding a grudge?

No. It's precisely Megan's professor analogy. I appreciated people speaking up when shitty things were said to me; I think it's important to speak up when shitty things are said to others.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 4:45 AM
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Because the cool people are doing it, so everyone loves to slam the outsider? Because we're all just a little bit racist (that's a quote from a song, intended to be a gentle way to get at the same thought)? Because Unfogged looooooves to take sides? Because we're getting off a little on kicking the down person and it feels good to be in the mob?

that famously sarcastico-funny Megan, congrats, you've successfully baited me
i forgive you all you said about me here and hope it pisses you off
the same goes to the victim of my day DK and ari and who else i forget, calm down, girls, calm down
just don't hope me to go away that easily, I'll play by your rules then, one victim per day, ha, that will be amusing and entertaining i promise


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 5:22 AM
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eh read seems to think it is over, so i shan't say anything further on the matter.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 5:36 AM
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I don't think 44 comments is enough sleep.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 7:05 AM
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returning to the important point, my fonts look fine now that I relaunched the browser. I know you're all very relieved. now let's just pretend this thread never happened.


Posted by: alameida | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 7:15 AM
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I will never forget that your fonts looked wrong.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 7:19 AM
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I stopped scrolling up at around comment 465, but in order to help this thread reach 1000, I thought I might engage in some serial baiting

ari is a fat fish who doesn't read his Bible. So there. Let the wars renew.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 7:24 AM
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Also from the Maslin review:
'Actually, Katherine, it's not gibberish.' His eyes brightened again with the thrill of discovery. 'It's ... Latin.'


Posted by: Molly | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 8:03 AM
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Missed this thread, but I'm glad and a little surprised to see around 438-450 that other people share my opinion of Dan Brown. I thought I was the only one. Well, now that I think of it I probably shouldn't be surprised; the reasons I hated The Da Vinci Code weren't all that idiosyncratic. The ham-handed ESL dialogue and the treatment of very well-trod fantasy/sci-fi plots as controversial just because they were aimed at a mainstream audience might be problems to me more than to most people, but surely no one can defend the prose or the Mary Sueism.

500
In that the one option for responding to offensive comments would be "turning the other cheek," an approach advocated by Jesus Christ in the New Testament.

Which would actually look interesting put into effect in a blog comment section (although maybe I shouldn't keep this going, if Keir and read are supposedly ready to drop it). "Turn the other cheek" = give them, unambiguously, a chance to hit you again. In commenting terms, feed the trolls. I generally try to avoid that, although I'm not always successful. (For the record I'm not calling anyone here a troll at the moment, and I obviously don't think that's good advice in all situations.)


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 8:06 AM
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666 -- Molly's is the Devil's Comment.

Yeah, Dan Brown and Latin. His occult and hermetic riddles are supposed to have withstood solution by the finest minds over a couple millenia, but would not in fact withstand the mental assault of, say, a freshman who's made it halfway through Wheelock.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 8:09 AM
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I think 657 gets it exactly right.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 8:15 AM
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It's the terribly poor quality of Brown that's insulting. He really doesn't give a shit. A lot of pulp writers are actually pretty good writers. They plot well, write passable dialogue and avoid obvious factual howlers. Brown is well well below the level of people like Koontz. He clearly doesn't care about producing even a passably good product.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 8:17 AM
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667: I think most people here think Dan Brown's work is beneath contempt, so it never gets mentioned. I'm just astonished that the NYT and Maslin are shameless enough to provide him with a well of blurbs.


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 8:19 AM
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I have no idea what happened here. Is the pathology of saying "The only real asshole is the person who claims he's not an asshole, because he's a hypocrite. You see, I know I'm an asshole and I'm proud to admit it." now spreading to racism?

"How dare you claim to not be a racist? You make me sick."


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 8:22 AM
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omg!1!Latin!?!


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 8:23 AM
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667: "Turn the other cheek" = give them, unambiguously, a chance to hit you again. In commenting terms, feed the trolls.

Honestly, I think it's sort of the opposite. Hitting back is more the feeding of the trolls equivalent. Turn the other cheek is Mom's classic advice that if you just ignore them they'll quit picking on you.

But it seems the debate moved on from whether M/tch should have responded to being called a "baby"* (i.e. should he have turned the other cheek) to whether Megan should have spoken up to say, "I don't like it when you call M/tch a 'baby'."

*As one example, not to overlook or minimize others.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 8:24 AM
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(Not to keep beating the horse. Sorry. But I do think it's a challenging question beyond just this thread to figure out when to respond and when to walk away, when to intervene and when to stay out of it.)


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 8:27 AM
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He clearly doesn't care about producing even a passably good product.

Oh, maybe he's tortured about it but just can't do any better. I'm sure the buckets of money are some consolation, but how much?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 8:28 AM
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I have no idea what happened here. Is the pathology of saying "The only real asshole is the person who claims he's not an asshole, because he's a hypocrite. You see, I know I'm an asshole and I'm proud to admit it." now spreading to racism?

This doesn't strike me as particularly what's happened in this thread, no.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 8:29 AM
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Making Light had a thread on September 12 about bullies in comment threads.

End line:"And the good bouncers are a fact of this community, to whom we owe the greater part of the pleasure of this site."

(I miss Emerson)

That particular thread only runs 134 comments, but it does refer to a previous thread, so there may be hours and hours of argument to study.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 8:40 AM
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I stopped scrolling up at around comment 465, but in order to help this thread reach 1000, I thought I might engage in some serial baiting

ari is a fat fish who doesn't read his Bible. So there. Let the wars renew.

I think you're going to have to start praising Dan Brown as a genius in order to be successful.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:01 AM
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I really appreciate how the mineshaft has taken the very first comment in this thread to heart.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:04 AM
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680: How dare you call us puppets and clowns!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:06 AM
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682

But seriously, we have to take something into our hearts, because there's a gap there where Jesus should be, but isn't.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:07 AM
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683

682: I've got a couple of babysitters you could talk to.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:09 AM
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684

Here is a good comment I liked from the start of that thread.

Of course, all argumentation includes subtle assertions of power. If I say that the other person is right in some regard, I give them power. Likewise if I say that I am wrong. But those are cases where the transfer of power is not against my will.

(Here's the sneaky clever thing. Being big enough to admit when you're wrong is actually more powerful, in the long term, than winning every argument you're in. But that requires longer focus and a consistent community)

..."abi"

Admitting you're wrong can be a great tactic. I'm not going deep into that thread.

Look, over the weekend I read a back-and-forth
between two Dutch intellectuals about "nomadic subjectivity" and the French post-structuralists(?). From what I was able to understand of it, it not only looked vicious and hurtful, though couched in academic obscurantism, but directly or indirectly touching on matters of great and immediate importance to Dutch politics and policy. IIRC, people have died there in battles over group identity and the politics of discourse inclusion/exclusion.

Do they have a gov't yet? Or is that Belgium?

Is this comment rambling, disjointed, off-topic, dismissive and hurtful because it's an attempt to intellectualize and universalize a particular instance of an actual person(s) hurt feelings? Am I supposed to be able to absolutely understand myself enough to be sure of what role I am trying to assume, in the realtime of a blog comment section?

Maybe I'm just trolling.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:11 AM
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685

Trollin, trollin, trollin. Keep them dogies trollin'.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:12 AM
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686

683: I was going to comment, but never got around to it, about the "In Christ," stuff. Over the years I've had my share of friends who sign things that way and I've never quite been able to figure out what it is that differentiates the ones who annoy the crap out of me thereby and the ones from whom it strikes me as an endearing thing. The best I can tell is that in some cases that closing comes off just as a natural expression from the writer's heart and in others it strikes me as a big banner designed to makes sure I know that the letter-writer is a Christian who is not going to Hell like all of those non-Christians out there.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:15 AM
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687

685: Is one of us supposed to be a dogie in this scenario?


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:15 AM
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688

687: Are you cute and furry and do you sniff people's butts?

Actually, I always think of the dogies as being dachsunds, because of a M*A*S*H joke where someone goes "Git along, little dogie!" and Hawkeye says "I had a long little doggie. He was a dachsund."


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:18 AM
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689

Little dogies are cute.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:19 AM
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690

On the internet, no-one knows you're what's a dogie.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:21 AM
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691

Pass the dogie on the left hand side.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:22 AM
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In the American Old West, a motherless or small, runty calf was sometimes referred to as a dogie,[4] though in the classic traditional folk song, Dogie's Lament also known as Git along little dogie, the "dogies" in question referenced cattle strong enough to be herded from Texas to Wyoming, including weaners, yearling steers and other young, not-necessarily-orphaned animals.[5]

You really thought they were herding dogs?

Sicko.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:22 AM
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693

I had a long little dogie. He was a stretch limo-calf.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:26 AM
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694

Big Dogie just wants you to think they're small and runty.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:27 AM
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695

Are you cute and furry and do you sniff people's butts?

Wasn't directed at me but I'm 2 for 3, and the 3rd is in the eye of the beholder.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:28 AM
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696

Their brown eye?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:29 AM
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697

695: No, apo, you're objectively furry.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:29 AM
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696: So is that what the Van Morrison song is about??


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:30 AM
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699

Unfortunately I already had someone make that terribly unshakeable association for me years ago.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:31 AM
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700

700!


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:31 AM
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701

699: You're saying they dedicated that song to you, or put it on a mix tape for you or something?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:33 AM
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702

My eye is more hazel, actually.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:35 AM
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703

But I wear a color contact, so.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:37 AM
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704

No-one knows what it's like, to be the sad man
Behind brown eye.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:43 AM
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705

Another comment from Making Light.

But I wonder whether some cases of internet bullying, or at least inadvertent ML bullying, might stem from the combination of that stereotypical fan's inability to read social signals clearly, coupled with the wish to play with others who seem to be able to wield words deftly, and model memory banks full of decades worth of books where dialog does what the author wants it to, without remembering that rapiers, witty or otherwise, are sharp and pointy and hurt people unless you're very carefully matched and wearing protective fencing gear.

That's analogy, huh. I'll ban myself.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:48 AM
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706

Pssssssssssst!


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:48 AM
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707

there's a gap there where Jesus should be, but isn't

I'm here for you, M/tch.

Is the dogie reference supposed to steer (har har) the thread onto a discussion about cute, furry animals, or about veal?


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:51 AM
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706: How does that work? It is, like, pot smoke in a can?


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:55 AM
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709

It's magic, Jesus.


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 9:57 AM
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710

Stuff's a little strong, maybe.


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:02 AM
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711

No, apo, you're objectively furry.

Nobody has objected to it yet.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:08 AM
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712

707: Well, you can't have one without the other.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:08 AM
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713

711: The butt-sniffing, on the other hand . . . .


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:12 AM
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714

Wow, complicated thread.

But to return to the religious baby sitter, I'm reminded of the Voltaire comment -- "I want my lawyer, my tailor, my servants, even my wife to believe in God, because it means that I shall be cheated and robbed and cuckolded less often. ... If God did not exist, it would be necessary to invent him." Presumably to keep the baby sitter honest.

I'm actually curious whether those who grew up among a lot of born-again types found them to be any more honest and reliable on a personal level.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:18 AM
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715

714.last: Not in my experience, no.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:23 AM
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716

714, 715: Not in my experience either.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:26 AM
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717

I mean, if you can make yourself believe nonsense, you can also make yourself believe that your horrible behavior is still somehow in line with that nonsense.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:27 AM
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718

Also, if you know your entire community will likely shun you for certain transgressions or nonconforming thoughts, you are pretty motivated to cover them up as best you can. Shame does not inspire a great deal of openness. (Not speaking from any particular experience here so much as from extrapolation.)


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:34 AM
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719

714: I've thought that about a couple of individuals -- people where I thought they were unusually honest, helpful, and self-effacing, and connected it to the fact that they were also unusually (IME) pious and seemed to be making a genuine effort to be good people for that reason, but that was a couple of individuals, not a verdict on religious people generally.

I've never been around many born-again types, though -- the two incidents I'm thinking of were both Catholics.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:35 AM
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720

Come to think of it, perhaps that is the point of the Garden of Eden story -- shame leads to cover-ups.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:35 AM
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721

659

No. It's precisely Megan's professor analogy. I appreciated people speaking up when shitty things were said to me; I think it's important to speak up when shitty things are said to others.

Plenty of bad things have been said to read as well.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:35 AM
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722

660

just don't hope me to go away that easily, I'll play by your rules then, one victim per day, ha, that will be amusing and entertaining i promise

You don't have to play the role your enemies have cast you in you know.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:38 AM
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723

I've seen a couple people whom (I guessed) used their religion as a guide to being spectacularly good people. One is a devout Catholic and works on environmental justice issues for farmworkers. Oh, I know two mediators who anchor their practice in being Quaker. But the people I'm thinking of hold themselves to a very rigorous interpretation of aspiring to Christ-like behavior.

I don't know people who are casually religious, so I have no idea how that crowd acts.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:39 AM
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724

I do wish I could edit my own comments for grammar.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:42 AM
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725

676

Oh, maybe he's tortured about it but just can't do any better. I'm sure the buckets of money are some consolation, but how much?

More likely he thinks his books are good as shown by the fact that they make a lot of money. I am not aware of any evidence that he is capable of writing better books and is just not bothering.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:43 AM
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726

721: You are welcome to speak up when you feel that is happening. Certainly, I encourage that as a general principle.

722: I wouldn't worry yourself over it too much, James. It's all just a work of fiction. Presumably, read will play whatever role she feels adds the most entertaining twist.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:45 AM
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727

721: I don't think anyone is contesting that.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:46 AM
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728

722: But she promises it will be amusing and entertaining, James. Why do you hate amusement and entertainment?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:47 AM
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729

685: Trollin, trollin, trollin. Keep them dogies trollin'.

Troll, troll, troll your boat
Gently down the screed!
Hairily, harily, hairily,
Life is but a scream.

max
['Blogs: new and different, dammit!']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:47 AM
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730

Uh oh, I fear Di and I are piling on.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:48 AM
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731

730: I hate that. Tell you what, you take the next one. We'll do it like pop-ups in the outfield -- just call for it when you are going for the play.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:53 AM
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732

731: But I thought we already centrally coordinated our comments so we knew when to swarm and mob certain commenters?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:58 AM
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733

remember one victim at a time
okay, i have my lunch time, so DK looks the most vulnerable and easy prey, i'll explain her how i find her perpetual whininess and self-centeredness boring and annoying
please keep your UNG comments to yourself, it spoils my appetite just recalling them
and fyi you brought him into the discussion, not me iirc, so there
i hope you now have a great day, my day was enlightened by your comments


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:58 AM
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734

717 is worthy of Voltaire. But it would be wittier in French.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 10:59 AM
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735

Hmmm. Read's first entry is not so amusing and entertaining after all. Mostly just sad.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:00 AM
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736

Here we go again...


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:01 AM
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737

736: What you mean "we", paleface?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:01 AM
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738

patience, MM, patience, you'll have your turn
and my today's quota of trolling is up


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:02 AM
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739

738: But if 733 is the best you can do, I think I'm going to have to cancel my subscription.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:04 AM
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740

737: I'm just along for the ride.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:05 AM
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741

I am so going to stop with my jokey attempt to turn this thread into a Theory War.

Me Me! read attack me! I like it, I thrive on it, it is my raisin dirt!


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:08 AM
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742

You'll have to wait until tomorrow, Bob.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:09 AM
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743

557: We shall see, Parsimon, if you have the willpower.

My willpower sucks. That's part of the problem. In any event, I threw a temper tantrum last night which was directed primarily at myself, so I'm sorry I got it on all of you.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:09 AM
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744

736: I wouldn't worry about it.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:10 AM
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745

I will speak up and say that I like Di Kotimy's comments, thoughts, observations, etc. and don't find them whiny, self-centered, boring, or annoying.

Not that anyone actually accused Di of that. To think so would be to jump to conclusions and read read's comment uncharitably. I'm sure 733 was either only about read herself, or about a work of fiction not involving any real people.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:10 AM
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746

if 733 is the best you can do
aha, that's my major complaint about DK, whenever she opens her mouth her precious UNG is there, how one wouldn't get bored by repetition is beyond my comprehension
i'm most satisfied by my performance, said it once out loud and won't repeat it again, great, it's like loads off the chest
if she stops her UNG references that'll even make my another day, but i don't count on that


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:13 AM
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747

I don't think that comments 733 and 746 really add value.


Posted by: emdash | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:14 AM
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748

Aw, thanks M/tch. Truth be told, I quite often find my own comments whiny, self-centered, boring and annoying. Though I'd hoped that I'd begun to look less vulnerable as I do feel I've grown a bit in that regard.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:15 AM
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749

I do feel I've grown a bit in that regard

You should keep an eye on that or else Joe Tex ain't gonna bump with you no more.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:17 AM
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750

Now I just feel dumb -- what does 749 mean?


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:20 AM
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751

Lame joke about the size of your regard.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:23 AM
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752

re: 750

Mr Tex was a popular music entertainer, m'lady. I believe he was once heard to opine his preference for ladies of smaller stature.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BQrxtIXMe7o


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:24 AM
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753

727

I don't think anyone is contesting that.

If your rational for intervening is that you don't like seeing people subjected to hurtful comments it hardly seems consistent to ignore hurtful comments directed at read.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:25 AM
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754

738: and my today's quota of trolling is up

Never stopped you before.

max
['I sorta miss the fakey gibberish though.']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:25 AM
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755

So, Di, how are you and UNG getting along these days?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:25 AM
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756

If your rational for intervening is that you don't like seeing people subjected to hurtful comments it hardly seems consistent to ignore hurtful comments directed at read.

I've never made any claims to being some kind of Defender of All Commenters, James. I don't like seeing people I like or who I feel don't deserve it subjected to hurtful comments.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:28 AM
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757

728

But she promises it will be amusing and entertaining, James. Why do you hate amusement and entertainment?

Not all of us find picking on the person who is a little different as amusing and entertaining as you appear to.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:30 AM
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758

And further to 756, how does my acknowledging that "Plenty of bad things have been said to read as well" amount to ignoring them?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:30 AM
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759

My cheeseburger. Let me show it to you.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:32 AM
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760

I've been reading up about Mongolian culture and it turns out insults are the traditional Mongolian way of saying, "I care." With this understanding I now find read's 733 rather touching and sweet.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:32 AM
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761

757: And not all of us find read being an asshole as defensible as you appear to. I don't care that she's "a little different". Plenty of people here fit that description in a multitude of different ways. I just don't like the way she behaves sometimes, and unless you're saying such behavior is a result of her being "a little different", whatever that means, I don't see the relevance.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:34 AM
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762

755: Why just last night he was dicking me around on childcare issues again. It was very frustrating, though I was pleased to note that my ability to not get sucked in has been improving. Thanks for asking!


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:35 AM
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Shearer: The implication that the people who are picking on read are doing it because she's "a little different" is an imputation of nasty motives. Would you be willing to believe that some or all of us are "picking on" read* are doing it for the reasons we state (because she says mean things to and about our friends)?

*Without conceding that calling people out for specific instances of meanness is "picking on" someone.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:36 AM
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764

Not all of us find picking on the person who is a little different as amusing and entertaining as you appear to.

Not all of us consider telling someone that we don't like them shitting on people to be "picking on" them, as you appear to.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:37 AM
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765

762 is a little light on detail, Di. Please tell us more.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:38 AM
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766

759: Is your cheeseburger big and fat? Because, um, well, I might have a problem with that.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:42 AM
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767

I mean, if I said you had a big fat cheeseburger, would you bump it against me?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:43 AM
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768

Also worth noting:

Malls has been here for years, virtually all of which he did not spend picking on people who are different. I have, however, seen him get angry at people who slighted the community here (me included). There are two factors at work here: "a little different" and "says mean things to people", and given that we actually know him and have his track record available to us, I think it is ungenerous to accuse him of acting in response to the first factor.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:46 AM
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769

Besides all that, he's funny.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:47 AM
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770

funny LOOKIN!


Posted by: Cecily | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:54 AM
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771

says mean things to and about our friends

It's the repeated reference to one's friends that perpetuates the feeling that one must be careful whom one takes issue with: for that person has certain friends who will be upset by extension for the very fact that their friend is the object of criticism!

It's the way communities work, of course, but in a blog environment, it does invite thoughts about cliques and so on. I say all this by way of explanation. The reference to one's friends suggests that a similar kerfuffle with someone who is not one's friend would pass without comment.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:55 AM
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772

I assumed she meant funny in the good buttsex way.


Posted by: emdash | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:55 AM
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773

Further to 771: I sound like Shearer to my own ears. Lunchtime.

Never post when hungry!


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:58 AM
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774

It's the repeated reference to one's friends that perpetuates the feeling that one must be careful whom one takes issue with

I understood Megan to have been using the term "friends" quite inclusively in reference to the commenting community at large. For the most part, aren't we kind of all friends here?


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:58 AM
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775

It's the way communities work, of course, but in a blog environment, it does invite thoughts about cliques and so on.

Cliques? Or just natural groupings of mutual affection? Are there not certain commenters that you, parsimon, go out of your way to express your admiration for? If someone said something nasty about one of them, would you not feel stirred to rise to their defense?

Are you really implying that having friends here is a bad thing? Here's a shocking news flash: I don't like each of you equally.


Posted by: emdash | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:59 AM
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776

but in a blog environment, it does invite thoughts about cliques and so on

Oh no, not cliques.

What is it about online communities that encourages people to think that normal, commonplace rules of social interaction don't apply? There are cliques and in-groups offline, there are damn sure going to be cliques and in-groups online too.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 11:59 AM
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777

The reference to one's friends suggests that a similar kerfuffle with someone who is not one's friend would pass without comment.

Actually, the real reason I specified that is that I try very hard to let comments about me pass without saying anything. I wasn't contrasting my ingroup friends with others who are fair game. I was contrasting people I know with myself. You are definitely right that I should police Ingroup and Others equally, if I am righteous enough to do it at all.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:00 PM
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778

775.last to 774.last...


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:00 PM
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779

776: Because people here can't see how ugly I am and how badly I dress.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:01 PM
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780

778: Heh.


Posted by: emdash | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:02 PM
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781

779: (and yet mysteriously you all seem to sense it and ignore me just like people in real life)


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:02 PM
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782

None of you aholes had better mess with emdash! Ive got her/his back.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:03 PM
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783

Well, unable to stop trying to calm the waters and distract from acrimony by violating the analogy ban, because bringing peace and comity is just how I roll:

The Congressional Republicans knew aheadatime that Joe Wilson was going to spontaneously emotional outburst the President. But that isn't my subject.

Joe Wilson trolled the President. Now the ensuing MSM news cycle was not about the President's speech, nor really about immigrants or the President's credibility (although those things got time) but was way too much about the troll (Joe Wilson).

Does this sound familar?

Am I seriously saying that there is something to learned from blog comment threads that can be applied to progressive political strategies for controlling the discourse? If I am, is it absurdly hackneyed, cliched, and unoriginal, or boring in some new and interesting way?


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:03 PM
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784

Because people here can't see how ugly I am and how badly I dress.

The front-page posters can, actually.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:03 PM
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785

And put on some pants already.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:04 PM
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786

What is it about online communities that encourages people to think that normal, commonplace rules of social interaction don't apply? There are cliques and in-groups offline, there are damn sure going to be cliques and in-groups online too.

Truthfully? Because an awful lot of you have been awfully nice to me over what is now many years here. And have done so since I first popped up over here, a sad sack with no particular in-group connection to anyone. Unless I am just that much cooler online than I am in real life, the cliquishness of the real world does indeed seem relaxed to me here.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:05 PM
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787

782: Damn right. Will and I actually are in a clique. Well, not a clique so much as a gang.


Posted by: emdash | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:06 PM
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788

If I am, is it absurdly hackneyed, cliched, and unoriginal, or boring in some new and interesting way?

A new way of boring! hurray for mcmanus!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:06 PM
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789

Unfoggeders, come out to play........

I might not look so good in a vest shirt. Can our gang wear suits?


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:08 PM
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790

785: But...those are my pants.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:09 PM
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791

The default for gangs is vest shirts?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:09 PM
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792

791: Well someone just blew all her street cred.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:10 PM
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793

777: You are definitely right that I should police Ingroup and Others equally, if I am righteous enough to do it at all.

Thanks -- that's all I was trying to say, though I said it as though I had a stick up my butt or something. I've been exhausted lately.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:10 PM
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794

My gang wears open-toed sandals and tooled leather belts and is never late.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:12 PM
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795

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uwcLL0Ffj7I&feature=related


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:12 PM
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796

794:

And tells math jokes.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:14 PM
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797

789.first: meetup!


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:16 PM
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798

sorry, JBS, it's not that i disregard your opinion
i'm having my fun too, it's a liberating experience i see now how it is to be a troll
DK, shut up and go away


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:16 PM
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799

Math jokes are how we throw our gang sign.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:16 PM
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800

800!


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:17 PM
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801

775: Are there not certain commenters that you, parsimon, go out of your way to express your admiration for? If someone said something nasty about one of them, would you not feel stirred to rise to their defense?

Of course there are people I like more than others. Would I rise to their defense, though, more readily or righteously than in any other case? No, I don't think so. People stand behind, take responsibility for, their own words here.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:17 PM
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802

Anyone have experience getting a recalcitrant MacBook to connect to a wireless network that it sees, but gives a "Connection failed" error for? (No authentication needed; maybe the signal is just weak.) iPhone connects without issues.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:17 PM
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803

Would I rise to their defense, though, more readily or righteously than in any other case? No, I don't think so. People stand behind, take responsibility for, their own words here.

Hmmph! Some friend you are!


Posted by: emdash | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:19 PM
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804

802: Try "Join Other Network..." and type the network name in?


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:20 PM
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805

Sweet. I seem to have driven a stake into the heart of this unholy thread.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:27 PM
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806

Oh, I thought "Join Other Network" was your way of telling us all to go away...


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:29 PM
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807

805: Unholy? No, this thread has Christ in its heart.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:30 PM
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808

MISSED MY HEART, DAVE!


Posted by: Opinionated Vampire Thread | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:30 PM
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809

806: Me too. I was this close to removing Bave from my extended network, just like I did with Tom.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:32 PM
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810

809- wait, HOW close?


Posted by: Cecily | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:33 PM
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811

806: DK, speak up and stay put.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:33 PM
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812

THIS CLOSE! THIS CLOSE!!!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:34 PM
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813

803: Hmmph! Some friend you are!

Heh. Yeah, I thought that. I should have added: I'd go off-blog. Which I know may seem weird, but really, if it were a personal blood-match on-blog, throwing one's two cents in doesn't help matters, to my mind.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:35 PM
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814

I dunno, that doesn't seem very close to me.


Posted by: Cecily | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:35 PM
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815

I mean, I've seen closer, is all I'm saying.


Posted by: Cecily | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:36 PM
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816

i hoped for today she'd shut up about her real and imagined misfortunes and traumatic past, but, no
long to wait it seems
maybe i'll bring up her alcoholic friend, how she's doing, not in the rehab as i would have prayed to all the gods, maybe she's still terrorizing our poor little DK
my condolences then, you deserve that


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:37 PM
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817

811: You're not the boss of me!


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:37 PM
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818

oh, she can stand for herself, what a surprise, she's not a perpetual victim of the world, i see some light


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:39 PM
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819

Further to 813: Whereas off-blog support and/or remarks along the lines of "hey, you're having a tough time there, hope you're okay, I don't want to say anything there on the matter as it'll just blow things up further, but stay calm if you can" seems right.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:40 PM
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820

read, although this forum has had a wide latitude for contentious substantive argument in the past, being directly and openly mean to individuals is still hurtful, and, I think, widely frowned on. I genuinely regret when anyone tells anyone to go away. I wish asilon hadn't said that to you, either. Still, although there's disagreement about the origins of the antagonism towards you, being consistently mean to someone here (and openly delighting in it) is only going to strengthen the impression that you are not acting in good faith towards reconciliation. (Which I believe would be met by good faith from the people here.)

So I have to ask the question: what do you want to get out of Unfogged? You put time, thought and emotion into it. What do you want back? The place is broad enough to include you when you add an intriguing perspective that doesn't attack people. It is, however, a pleasant place for smart-asses to chat during the day, and it is damaged when you use it to experiment with the feelings of trolling. I wish you wouldn't do that.

What do you want Unfogged to be for you?


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:41 PM
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821

819: I've had folks do that as well, and appreciated it, too.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:42 PM
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822

it's delightful, delightful, Megan, you are right
but i'm not talking to you, wait for your turn, okay


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:43 PM
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823

819 - Yeah. It really is touching and helpful when the lurkers support you in email.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:43 PM
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824

boring in some new and interesting way?

Mouseover?


Posted by: Criminally Bulgur | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:44 PM
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825

I am rethinking having pari in my gang. I like her. She has great access to books.

Yet, her thirst for blood vengence seems low.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:44 PM
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826

come on, DK, complain some more, give me that, fodder to attack you


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:46 PM
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827

You know, if Bush were still in power we wouldn't be squabbling like this, we'd be outraged at his latest policy of flaying bunnies alive after sexually abusing them.

IOW, Obama killed the blog.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:46 PM
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828

820: I admire your patience and effort, Megan. Doesn't seem to be taking, which may be understandable, given history. Perhaps Keir or ttaM or JBS or someone else can talk some sense into read?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:47 PM
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829

pity, have to go offline
but see you in the evening, DK, enjoy your miserable day


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:49 PM
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830

What is it about online communities that encourages people to think that normal, commonplace rules of social interaction don't apply?

Because these are disposable identities in a place that disappears when the laptop closes.

This place is different for its kindness and thoughtfulness, for the way people generally behave like adults in the face of disagreements.

The thread about songs the other day was especially great, still skimming music from that one. Especially nice is that people are willing to share pieces of their lives here.

ищите, и найдете


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:50 PM
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831

LB, you can't possibly be suggesting that there were no interminable personality-based squabbles over incredibly fine distinctions in the 2000-2008 period of Unfogged.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:50 PM
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832

826: You sound a little desperate, read. Is your job very boring?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:51 PM
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833

I can suggest anything I like. If that were what I was suggesting, I'd be laughably wrong, but that doesn't necessarily mean I wasn't suggesting it.

I've been laughably wrong before. Frequently. It's almost a hobby.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:52 PM
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834

read, obviously your reputation is really your own, but you are making people who spoke up for you look foolish.


Posted by: Abelard | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:52 PM
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835

830: In order to make my Reading of The Fucking Archives more efficient, can you link to the thread about songs? I think I must have missed that.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:53 PM
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836

827: I don't think "we" are squabbling, at this stage. I do think there comes a point where those with the authority to do so ought to think about where the boundaries are for permissible discourse and whether lines have been crossed.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:53 PM
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837

I'm off to lunch as well. At this point, my feeling is that I've extended my hand and it is hanging there. If the goal is reintegrating read for her good qualities, I think the next move should come from her, someone she trusts, or someone who wants that reintegration enough to advance the situation.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:54 PM
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838

All I can really think of at this moment are pastry, socks, and hammers.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:56 PM
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839

The thread about songs the other day was especially great

Which? I think I missed it. I like songs, even earnestly depressing ones like Felt's "All The People I Like Are Those That Are Dead."

And sort of oddly pwned on preview.


Posted by: Criminally Bulgur | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:57 PM
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840

839: Who you calling odd?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 12:59 PM
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841

those with the authority to do so

As one of such people, nuh uh. While 'no banning' isn't a hardline rule (ToS, that guy Charlie not-Whitaker, some guy back in the days of Ogged and Unf), I prefer it to be a very very high bar to clear, and I don't think anyone's particularly close. Read's being a jerk right now, but there honestly have been provocations on both sides.

And short of banning, 'authority' doesn't mean much.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:01 PM
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842

I've been laughably wrong before. Frequently. It's almost a hobby.

I get really pissed off when I disagree with LB and she is laughably wrong (AS ALWAYS!!!) and my peeps dont support me. emdash?? Parsimon??


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:02 PM
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843

Read's being a jerk right now, but there honestly have been provocations on both sides.

Yes. The horse was dead long ago. At this point, it is just getting old on all sides.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:03 PM
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844

841: Oh, and Bitch, even though she got unbanned thanks to luaP emansistahW.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:04 PM
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845

842: This peep is on LB's side, Will.

Except that she's wrong about her being frequently laughably wrong.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:05 PM
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846

804: Thanks, but that gives the same "connection failed" error. Sigh.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:07 PM
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847

Read's being a jerk right now, but there honestly have been provocations on both sides.

As the declared target of the day, I frankly fail to see what I've done to provoke anything, and in particular I would take the position that bringing up an emotionally sensitive point involving exceedingly serious issues affecting someone I love -- for the sole and expressed purpose of hurting me -- is, in fact, beyond the pale.

But this is not my blog and I do not set policy. Congratulations, read. You win. I'm out.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:07 PM
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848

845:

Oh yea??!?!? Bring it on, peep!! Bring it on!

I wanted a cult, but I will settle for a gang.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:08 PM
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849

As the declared target of the day, I frankly fail to see what I've done to provoke anything, and in particular I would take the position that bringing up an emotionally sensitive point involving exceedingly serious issues affecting someone I love -- for the sole and expressed purpose of hurting me -- is, in fact, beyond the pale.

Read's comments about you were totally out of line.

Prior to her showing up, I thought maybe people were piling on a little....but, then, she showed up and acted very poorly.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:10 PM
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850

848: I'm not scared of you, Will!!!!

But, could you please remind me what we're fighting about? I'm all worked up and angry, but I can't remember why.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:11 PM
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851

I do think there comes a point where those with the authority to do so ought to think about where the boundaries are for permissible discourse and whether lines have been crossed.

read's beating up on you, for sure, but it's a sort of laughable caricature by now.

I'd thought to mention this before: everybody here is intelligent and independent enough to draw his or her own conclusions about what goes on. If anything, those occasional off-blog lurker emails remind one of this. Whatever an emergent consensus on-blog may look like, people are making up their own minds, and are not stupid. It's always good to be reminded that something that may seem huge in some blow-up thread is actually viewed as a silly dust-up or whatever.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:12 PM
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852

850:

Oh, dont act like you don't know. It is that thing you said. Back in that thread.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:13 PM
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853

Read's comments today aimed at Di have really pissed me off.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:13 PM
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854

I'll support you, Will.

M/tch, Megan, Di, you know I love you, but however right you may be, there are better ways to deal with someone who is obviously angry and defensive. Read, you know I love you, but however right you may be, there are better ways to deal with people who are angry at you. Community and all. Plus, you're boring the fuck out of me.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:13 PM
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855

Just checking in. Have I missed anything?


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:13 PM
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856

And short of banning, 'authority' doesn't mean much.

It does include the ability to close threads. Just sayin'.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:14 PM
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857

I think 847 gets it exactly right. I think there's some seriously false equivalency going on in 841.

I'm not actually arguing for banning, but I find it pretty maddening that you're excusing read's behavior in that way. Has there been provocation? Sure. Does that mean read gets to behave as badly as she wants, specifically directed to someone who didn't actually provoke her? It boggles my mind that you would think so.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:15 PM
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858

What Jesus said. (WWJS? Apparently, 851.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:15 PM
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859

834 hi,
please stay out of it, pity you prefer poor victims
i'm not used to that treatment and will defend myself however myself pleases
853 i'm delighted, thanks for your assurance


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:17 PM
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860

856 is right.

IOW, stop me before I post something even stupider.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:18 PM
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861

laughable caricature

This sums up nicely how I felt about read's comments. It really seemed like the comments of the elementary school kid with tears streaming down her cheeks, throwing back anything that she thought might be hurtful.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:18 PM
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862

but it's a sort of laughable caricature by now.

Easy to say when you're not the target of it.

Plus, you're boring the fuck out of me.

Jesus, you know I love you, but I'm not doing this for your entertainment, and I wouldn't be doing it if I didn't actually think there was something important at stake. In addition, your mother wears combat boots.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:19 PM
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863

Jesus, read.

Just stop already.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:21 PM
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864

song thread, MM comments included

Cheeky Girls, no MM


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:23 PM
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865

It does include the ability to close threads. Just sayin'.

Or to threaten banning if certain behavior doesn't stop.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:23 PM
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866

864: Ah. Duh.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:24 PM
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867

Further to 865: Or to delete comments that so closely resemble TOS drivel as to be nearly indistinguishable (although I understand that such policing is a pain in the ass; but hey, that's why the front page posters get the big bucks, right?)


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:26 PM
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868

859 to 854, 863
sorry, but i have to play my role at least one day, or no, i mean as i feel it's needed
867 yes, how you are right, that's my next ambition, to be deleted, you are making me a favor


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:28 PM
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869

861: Well, read is snarling, teeth bared. If it were me feeling that way, I'd issue a great Fuck You, and be off. She's chosen a different path.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:29 PM
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870

856: Not from work it doesn't, and on top of that I don't know how. Deleting and editing comments I can do, I could probably remember how to ban an IP address, but not close a thread.

857: Be maddened, then, if you like. You're right, Di didn't say anything that could be remotely construed as sufficient provocation for Read's last couple of comments at her. You, on the other hand, fond as I generally am of you (and I really am) are half or more of the reason this thing blew up, and I wish you'd quit it.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:32 PM
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871

And 862.1: Easy to say when you're not the target of it

is of course right.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:34 PM
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872

862: My mother has never needed combat boots to kick ass, for better or for worse, and your mom, well, she made me promise I wouldn't say what she wears.

Look, I know there's something important at stake, and I really don't want to extend the argument, but it's easy to see why read might feel like an outsider (e.g., her initial comments were ascribed to a spambot), and why (without defending her comments) a different approach would be preferable. I would much rather have you and her and anyone else remain part of the same community. For reals.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:37 PM
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873

I put up a new thread. Hey everybody, look! A new thread!


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:40 PM
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874

872: My mom was in the Israeli Army, so she did actually wear combat boots.

When kids used to tease me, "Your mom wears combat boots!" I would reply, "Not anymore!", and then run away and cry.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:41 PM
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875

Does 'combat boots' in that phrase mean something more specific than "Your mother wears unfeminine shoes"? I always felt that I wasn't fully understanding that one.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:43 PM
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876

You, on the other hand, fond as I generally am of you (and I really am) are half or more of the reason this thing blew up, and I wish you'd quit it.

I'll stop after this, but I really do think this is more of a false equivalency. If read's behavior was provoked, then I certainly think mine was. Regardless, since I'm not actually directing vitriol at bystanders, I'd think you might also ask read to quit it too, while you're requesting if of me.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:43 PM
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877

You're right, Di didn't say anything that could be remotely construed as sufficient provocation for Read's last couple of comments at her.

Last couple? Try 733, 746, 798, 816, 818, 826, 829...

You, on the other hand, fond as I generally am of you (and I really am) are half or more of the reason this thing blew up, and I wish you'd quit it.

I find it personally offensive for you to cast blame on M/tch for read's unquestionably poor behavior. Placing the blame for that conduct anywhere other than with read is aiding and abetting her abusive conduct.

With that, I am done.

I am also deeply dismayed that you find her treatment of me in this thread acceptable. I have truly loved this place, but I do not intend to stick around knowing that it is deemed acceptable to treat me this way. Or that it will be acceptable to treat the next person this way tomorrow. It is not acceptable.

For those who find read's antics "laughable," let me assure you, I am not laughing.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:44 PM
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878

Your mother did something for a soldier when she needed shoes. Now she has his.

You're welcome, Margaret Dumont.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:44 PM
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879

Thanks, Jesus, for the discretion you show in 872.1, and for the magnanimity you show in 872.2. I do bristle when something that is obviously meaningful or important to someone gets casually written off as "boring" or "silly".


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:48 PM
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880

Di, if this thread drives you away, I will deeply regret it. You're someone who I really value around here.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:49 PM
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881

880:Me too.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:51 PM
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882

Blog overlords, how're you feeling about the proposition that read will choose a different person to attack each day (660), with the goal of being deleted (868)? And the evidence that she'll be pretty vicious about the personal confessions people make here? She'll run out of people who could be somehow construed to have provoked her by October. (Don't think Di did initially provoke her, either, which makes read's continuing personal attacks even meaner.)

I see what you mean about a very high bar, but if you take read's statements about her intentions at face value, I think she's looking good to clear it. If you don't take her statements at face value, you're racist about Mongolians.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:52 PM
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883

I've tried to stay out of this spat, coming as it does so closely after the Jes dustup. However, read has made perfectly clear ever since she returned that her intention is to troll, and has even said exactly that on multiple occasions. People can accept that or not as they see fit, but saying that she's doing anything else is ignoring her own stated intent.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:53 PM
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884

Also, Megan sucks for pwning me.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:55 PM
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885

876 - Not directing vitriol at bystanders, nor starting randomly directed fights where none existed.

And besides, much as this confuses the issues, M/tch is funny, which has always been a mitigating factor here. We can drop that, because I don't think he's been that far out of line. But if he were that far out of line, being funny brings him back in line.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:56 PM
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886

880

agreed.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:56 PM
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887

882 i can't wait for tomorrow


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:57 PM
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888

For the record, I'm not going anywhere. And, I don't care how boring or silly it seems to anyone here, read's behavior for much of this thread has been shitty and I plan on speaking up about it if future occasions arise.

I certainly don't think read should be treated any more carefully than I treat anyone else here. I will try to be slower off the offense mark when it comes to read's comments if she sticks around, but it clearly isn't just me who has a problem with the way she behaves sometimes. Just ask the lurkers in e-mail.

Also, of course, I hope Di sticks around. I think it's pretty shitty when people stand idly by when read is spewing her crap, perhaps especially those who have defended her previously. It doesn't negate an earlier defense of read to speak up and say "okay now she's crossed the line."


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:58 PM
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889

and for the day after tomorrow


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 1:59 PM
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890

read, are you planning that I'll be the person you talk about tomorrow?


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 2:00 PM
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891

I am torn about continuing this thread, but I really want to say that I would miss Di terribly.

I don't think I have ever seen a single other person here subject to such a sustained volley of deeply personal abuse.

Ben is a frequent target of the ToS, but those of course get deleted.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 2:01 PM
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892

Am I reading 889 right when I think that you are saying that M/tch is on deck for Wednesday?


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 2:02 PM
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893

i hope you'll do some more research of Mongolians
by tomorrow and we'll see who will leave or not
bye, DK


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 2:03 PM
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894

889: Maybe you could publish a calendar of targets, so we can know which days will be especially amusing and entertaining? Or like if one of your targets won't be online that day, they can switch with someone else?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 2:03 PM
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895

single other person here subject to such a sustained volley of deeply personal abuse.

I thought Dsquared took a good long run at me, but somehow that got lost in the noise and his reputation.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 2:03 PM
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896

Is 877 Di? I would really hate to see Di leave.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 2:06 PM
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897

I honestly wish read would respond to 820. It doesn't really seem like she is having that much fun- 861 seems right to me. Is there some other way we could have conversations that would make this same fight stop happening over and over?


Posted by: Cecily | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 2:06 PM
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898

Read: You just sound like an idiot now, okay? Any blog or community anywhere is full of people one can attack. There's no good reason for this.

Take it somewhere else if you want to do it.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 2:07 PM
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899

895: For the record, I thought Dsquared was an ass to you, and should have spoken up about it at the time, but it was a feudy thread and I didn't want to get into it with him too.

Also, I kept thinking his descriptions of you seemed off the mark in an uncharacteristic way (he's usually very pointed and spot-on with whoever he sets his sights on) that made me think perhaps he thought you were actually McMegan?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 2:07 PM
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900

896: It is, and I would be too.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 2:07 PM
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901

900!


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 2:07 PM
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902

887, 889: It's nice that read leads such an exciting, fulfilling life.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 2:08 PM
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903

888:I think it's pretty shitty when people stand idly by when read is spewing her crap

Look, dood, we all have our reasons. I don't feel it's my place to police this blog, and I can't help remembering how pathetic read looked trying to fit in over at Kotsko's. Reading her there, I was hoping she might find her way back here. I apparently was wrong to hope that.

Some of you may remember Emerson & I having arguments over how to deal with trolls. This may have more to do with character than judgement. I am a withdrawer and asocial by nature, and it is very hard for me to join other people's fights.

If it matters, I am more on the side of MM and Megan and apo and of course Di Kotimy than the appeasers and moral equivalence group.

If I ever ever use RL material to hurt people here, and I think I have once or twice, I hope I am called out on it. Sternly.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 2:09 PM
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904

901: It's okay, heebie. You're a mathematician, not an arithmetician.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 2:10 PM
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905

Close the thread. Let's start new.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 09-14-09 2:11 PM
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