Re: I, for one, hate bedrest.

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Justifiable Homicide

Dogby reports on Tiller murder trial


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:32 AM
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1: I wonder if they'll let the Fort Hood gunman use that same defense.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:45 AM
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So perhaps "Justifiable Kidnapping and Unlawful Confinement" is next.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:46 AM
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a possible way that someone's opinion here wouldn't be easily predicted from their opinion on abortion:

Say your support for abortion rights is grounded in the belief that a mother may exercise her unborn child's right to suicide on its behalf. That might be consistent with a desire that a mother be legally obligated to act in the interests of the child in a broader context.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:47 AM
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2: I think it's only endangered American fetuses that justify murder. Iraqi and Afghani fetuses don't count.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:48 AM
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it seems like there are hazy grey areas in abortion too. that some conservatives think focusing on conception eliminates the question of when personhood attaches is just a reflection of denial in support of the character flaw on their part.

or do many people really focus on the 'can do whatever with my body' sort of argument and not the 'its a foetus, not something important like a person' kind of argument?


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:54 AM
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This comment at the site gets it right:

Why is this an article in the NYT Magazine?? This is not adventures in parenting!!! This is a major legal/privacy/etc. issue and should be treated as such with a properly treated article in the New York Times newspaper.

Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:55 AM
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anyway are there laws against maternal smoking or not eating enough fish (or too much lead/pcb accumulating fish)?


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:56 AM
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Judicial interference with medical decisions and the obvious potential for dueling physicians aside, the prescription of "bedrest" seems intolerably and, more to the point, unenforceably vague.

OT: I had to create a gmail account for this handle to respond to KR's message in the previous thread, so people can send Scientology personality tests Ballys Total Fitness membership bargains new revelations about the Knights Templar and the Rosicrucians -- why you should buy gold now threats to the linked address.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:59 AM
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are there laws against maternal smoking

Given the rate of accumulation (and increasing intrusiveness) of anti-smoking ordinances, it's only a matter of time.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 11:00 AM
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I had to create a gmail account for this handle to respond to KR's message

Worried about catching cooties?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 11:03 AM
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10: Cuwwentwy, you have to specificawwy wequest a non-smoking womb.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 11:05 AM
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||
Awesome find via Andrew Sullivan. Purchasers of communion wafers are also apparently big on buying Bibles, communion cups, and Astroglide.
|>


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 11:13 AM
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Oh man, is that awesome.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 11:29 AM
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Can we get some federal civil rights charges here, please?


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 11:31 AM
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That is so appalling. I wish the story included the names of the doctor and hospital so that pregnant women would know not to go to them.


Posted by: tulip | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 11:50 AM
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This is another example of why all my talents go to waste. I would be great at bedrest!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 11:51 AM
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I think the woman should file the moral equivalent of an inverse condemnation action. She should admit abuse/neglect and turn over custody to the State of Florida, then damand that Florida take care of the kid and let her go on her way. Or maybe just drop the foetus off at a fire station.


Posted by: Michael H Schneider | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 12:25 PM
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18: Somebody didn't read the article!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 12:27 PM
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what did I miss?


Posted by: Michael H Schneider | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 12:35 PM
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20: After three days of hospitalization, she had to undergo an emergency C-section and the fetus was found dead.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 12:37 PM
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You're right, I skimmed past that.


Posted by: Michael H Schneider | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 12:40 PM
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She still could have dropped it off at the fire station.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 12:43 PM
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Showed up in court and pitched it at the judge?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 12:46 PM
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and everyone agrees that somewhere there is a line that shouldn't be crossed.

What do you mean by this, Heebie? I'm having trouble thinking of any order a judge might give a pregnant woman w/r/t her fetus that I'd be comfortable with.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 12:55 PM
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25: How about an order to not throw fetuses at judges or risk contempt?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 12:56 PM
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25: that fetus is not allowed to have sex with a horse!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 12:56 PM
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Also on the list in 13:

A book called Jesus Wants to Save Christians and a videotape of The Holocaust, so you can see Jesus in action not saving Jews.

(Bonus item: the Wii dancing mat. To practice dancing desperately over the flames of hell if one doesn't manage to make it upstairs?)


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 12:58 PM
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25: You are not allowed to sell your fetus to Glaxo Smith Kline.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 12:58 PM
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Are there real examples of judges putting heroin- or meth-addicted pregnant women in jail until they give birth, or does that only happen on Law & Order: The Handmaid's Tale?


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:01 PM
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Wii dancing is acceptable as long as you don't actually touch the mat.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:02 PM
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30: I seem to remember hearing about cases on Indian reservations where alcoholic women were confined during pregnancy to prevent fetal alcohol syndrome. But that may have been some kind of tribal intervention thing, and not specifically a judge's order (anyway not a US court).


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:05 PM
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What do you mean by this, Heebie? I'm having trouble thinking of any order a judge might give a pregnant woman w/r/t her fetus that I'd be comfortable with.

I'm not sure if there's anything that I'd want a judge to order a pregnant woman to do. What I was picturing when I wrote that is that there'd be widespread agreement that a woman with a very late term fetus should not egregiously harm the baby in some situationally, uh, bad, um, way.

I can't think of any example that doesn't treat women like idiots, or doesn't allow for some bizarre special situation. But, say, no one wants a very pregnant woman to do something that would be painful to the fetus for no good reason.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:07 PM
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30: I would totally watch that, ofM/tch!


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:11 PM
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"No one wants" is not a workable juridical principle.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:11 PM
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Say, she was a mad scientist and wanted a reptile baby -- we'd be opposed to her injecting the placenta with radioactive snake venom for that purpose.

I kind of know what you mean, but I'd agree with DaveB on this one -- I can't think of a plausible enough situation that I'd want either legal regulation, or even disapproval without full knowledge of the whole situation.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:12 PM
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"No one wants" is not a workable juridical principle.

Oh, good. Because then that's consistent with "I'm not sure if there's anything that I'd want a judge to order a pregnant woman to do."


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:12 PM
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As in so many cases of medical ethics, the inevitable question arises: What about the Christian Scientists?


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:16 PM
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I think people are Dave and NPH are pushing back a little against 'intolerable extremes on both sides'. The 'intolerable extreme' on one side is 'say some woman wanted to injure her late term fetus for no reason at all. As a matter of principle, that's her unquestionable right.' And that's not so much an intolerable extreme on one side, because first it's not clear who holds an opinion like that (my first guess is that in that form, no one really), and second it doesn't seem that an opinion like that would be 'intolerable', because the odds are it would have literally no real world effect on anyone.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:16 PM
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ofM/tch

Um, huh?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:17 PM
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opposed to her injecting the placenta with radioactive snake venom

Luddites.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:17 PM
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Offred is not the narrator's real name--Handmaid names consist of the word "of" followed by the name of the Handmaid's Commander.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:18 PM
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Say, she was a mad scientist and wanted a reptile baby -- we'd be opposed to her injecting the placenta with radioactive snake venom for that purpose.

Tsk. So small minded!


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:18 PM
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Okay, let's call the "intolerable extreme" to be denying healthcare to a preemie.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:18 PM
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The interests of the fetus would be better addressed by confronting this problem:

she had two toddlers to care for and a job to keep
But, you know, intolerable extremes.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:18 PM
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In the distance, you hear a mournful "pwwwned".


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:19 PM
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42: Ah, thanks. Haven't read THMT.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:19 PM
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Okay, let's call the "intolerable extreme" to be denying healthcare to a preemie.

Erm, I can think of situations where that would be humane: "Your baby's going to die. With heroic efforts, we can keep her alive for maybe a couple of months of pain. Or we can give up now."

What were you thinking as intolerable -- someone who wants to deny healthcare to their premature baby out of spite?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:21 PM
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it's not clear who holds an opinion like that (my first guess is that in that form, no one really)

There are a non-negligible number of people who injure themselves for (in your and my perception) what amounts to no reason at all. Devil's advocate: what about a psychotic mother who tends toward harm when she goes off her medications?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:21 PM
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I'm having trouble thinking of any order a judge might give a pregnant woman w/r/t her fetus that I'd be comfortable with.

As am I, but consider the question of civil commitment. The standard is, to my meager but not entirely uninformed knowledge, high, but one can all too easily imagine judges and unscrupulous prosecutors colluding in findingss of "risk of harm to self or others" with respect to pregnant women who indulge in an occasional cigarette, glass of wine, etc.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:24 PM
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Luddites.

But those reptile babies are going to destroy our livelihoods, apo!

(The Luddites get a bad rap. They weren't opposed to technology per se, just to technology that only benefitted a few at the expense of many. On that basis, I hereby order apo's utterance stricken from the thread, and pwnage removed from rfts.)


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:24 PM
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49: I'd need to know if she has lizard super-strength before wading into that hypothetical, I think.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:25 PM
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49: No, what I meant is that I'm not sure anyone's out there who thinks that the right of a woman to intentionally injure a baby she intends to carry to term is an important one to protect, not that no one would engage in behavior that might injure a fetus.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:25 PM
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before I wade into that hypothetical, I mean


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:26 PM
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Oh, and still first down.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:26 PM
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52: Not lizard super strength, but let's say average adult chimpanzee strength.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:27 PM
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28: The Wii mat caught my attention too. I like to think that priests split roughly evenly between those who follow communion by busting a groove and those who prefer to bust a nut.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:30 PM
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25

What do you mean by this, Heebie? I'm having trouble thinking of any order a judge might give a pregnant woman w/r/t her fetus that I'd be comfortable with.

Not to take mutagenic drugs like thalidomide or accutane. In general not to do things which are likely to produce a severely damaged baby.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:31 PM
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52: Lizards have that weird regenerative power, too.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:31 PM
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Maybe the Astroglide is for the Wii mat. Ups the difficulty of the dancing game significantly, donchaknow.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:31 PM
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Super strength lizard vs. average adult chimpanzee: who wins?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:32 PM
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Devil's advocate: what about a psychotic mother who tends toward harm when she goes off her medications?

This turns out to be a fairly challenging situation.


Posted by: Harry Truman | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:33 PM
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Super strength lizard vs. average adult chimpanzee: who wins?

Is it really cold in the Octagon? Is the floor coated with Astroglide?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:33 PM
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61: Depends on the lizard, probably. We saw a huge -- at least six feet from stem to stern -- iguana in the Florida swamps a few weeks back. That thing would have made quick work of a chimp.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:35 PM
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39:In this country, with the current political climate and the state of the discourse on abortion, I believe it is both politically and morally necessary to take as "intolerably" extreme a position on a woman's right to choose as I can. There are entirely too many other "reasonable" people discussing the "hard questions" giving discourse space to my enemies for me to be needed there and too few absolutists building defensible walls, and defending them enthusiastically.

For the public record, there is nothing to discuss. The right to an abortion should have no legal limits.

1) There is, according to EK, a referendum on the California ballot about protecting fertilized ovum.

2) The various woman's groups have refused to score the healthcare bill with the Nelson-Stupak language. IOW, they have give the Congress a free vote on the bill.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:36 PM
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Apo, needless to say, knows the right variables to consider.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:36 PM
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People are capable all manner of stupid and self-destructive shit. I don't have a categorical problem with a court being able to commit a suicidal teen, or with a judge being a little faster on the draw with a pregnant suicidal teen. Suicidal adult or pregnant suicidal adult, if it were shown that the adult suffers from a treatable medical condition.

I don't like interfering with personal autonomy, but I don't think the proper response to mental illness is 'well, that's her trip.'


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:37 PM
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62: I momentarily forgot local pseud norms, and was wracking my brain: Bess? Margaret? Mrs. Truman?


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:39 PM
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67: Sure, we've got laws providing for commitment and so forth for someone who's incompetent due to mental illness, and there's nothing about those laws that shouldn't operate during pregnancy. The question is whether pregnancy is a reason to take action to constrain the decisions of a competent (even if misguided) woman whose decisions you disagree with. And I can't think of a realistic situation where I would.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:40 PM
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in the Florida swamps a few weeks back

This was presumably before they started falling half-frozen out of trees.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:41 PM
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Apo, needless to say, knows the right variables to consider.

Say what? He didn't even mention flow, much less rhyming skillz.


Posted by: M/tch m/lls | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:43 PM
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I say we give the lizard a gun and the chimpanzee a machete, just to make it interesting.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:48 PM
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69 -- Right, but I'm allowing the court to add pregnancy to the slate of factors to be considered in making the decision. As I would cancer, or, more realistically, diabetes.

This is not the extreme position.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:50 PM
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72: Flippanter is really Michael Vick.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:51 PM
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67: So what you're saying is, pregnant women are incompetent?


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:53 PM
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74: Have I offered odds or a range of table games and Texas Hold 'Em in my tastefully decorated and air-conditioned all-events venue, which features world-class shopping as well as day care? No. This would be purely an exhibition: no wagering. Please check all concealed firearms with the front desk and enjoy the buffet.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:54 PM
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60: Slip Hop.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 1:57 PM
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As I would cancer, or, more realistically, diabetes.

You'd allow a court to consider whether someone had cancer or diabetes in deciding whether they were competent? I'm not following this at all -- either what it means primarily or what the analogy is with pregnancy. Say it again slower, and with shorter words?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:00 PM
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67, 69: Except that since the '70s, my understanding is that almost all of those laws are for extremely, extremely short periods of time. E.g. 72 hours.

That's not to say that they aren't arbitrarily and unfairly enforced against marginalized people such that people get held in the system (usually prison rather than the psych hospital) for longer than that, but even so they're not generally there for months, in my observation.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:01 PM
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And obviously, I really don't get what being pregnant has to do with being incompetent. I can imagine a legal regime where you'd constrain a competent pregnant woman's decisions out of concern for the fetus (wouldn't approve, but I understand it), but that's got nothing to do with incompetence, does it?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:02 PM
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I really don't get what being pregnant has to do with being incompetent

Oh c'mon, LB, you know that pregnant women get forgetful and clumsy.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:04 PM
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79: One reason that people are no longer routinely involuntarily committed for months or years at a time is that there are neither public nor private insurance funds for the very high costs of in-patient mental illness treatment. A very cruel scenario can be imagined involving rich (or otherwise supported) and merciless parents or in-laws.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:05 PM
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Personally, I favor involuntary commitment for that so-called bagger who put the squash on top of the bunch of parsley. I'm not making salsa verde, you incompetent clod!


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:05 PM
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I really don't get what being pregnant has to do with being incompetent

Actually, it's mostly post-pregnancy that they pee themselves.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:07 PM
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83: There was an old SNL fake commercial about a "Hire the Incompetent" program. Bill M. F. Murray played a bagger and mumbled on about his packing strategies.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:10 PM
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84: But how do you think they got themselves in that condition in the first place?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:12 PM
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squash on top of the bunch of parsley

At least it's living up to its name.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:12 PM
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86: I suspect the whitish slime from hot dogs plays a role.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:13 PM
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Having (unfortunately) some recent experience in this area, I can say that it is extraordinary difficult to get someone involuntarily committed for longer than 72 hours. The standard is danger to yourself or others, but in practice anything short of being in imminent, clearly demonstrable, danger of killing yourself or severely injuring another person won't suffice.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:15 PM
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88: It's quite common for girls of a certain age to touch the white slime on their dog.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:15 PM
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61 et seq.: your sporting contest strikes me as both brutal and unedifying. There are vastly more sophisticated ways to inject a little bit of sport into one's life.

I, for one, bait headrests.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:16 PM
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Semi-OT: did you know you can now call you fetus on your iPhone?

Only $129.99!


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:17 PM
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69

... The question is whether pregnancy is a reason to take action to constrain the decisions of a competent (even if misguided) woman whose decisions you disagree with. And I can't think of a realistic situation where I would.

So you don't agree with the current constraints on pregnant women taking Accutane?


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:19 PM
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93: There are restrains beyond the willingness of physicians to prescribe Accutane to women who are or may be pregnant? Those I'm good with.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:22 PM
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91: Racist. Rap is just as sophisticated as headrest-baiting. And besides it's what the lizard and chimp youth are into these days. They're just not going for the fusty old headrest-baiting of their parents' generation.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:22 PM
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LB, you're thinking of the 'liability' phase, and I'm thinking of the 'remedies' phase.

I agree with 79. I'm still not at the extremist position.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:27 PM
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94: Sir Kraab's exhaustive explanation of the legal and other restrictions on Accutane.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:30 PM
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96.1: I am entirely confused. Liability? Remedies?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:32 PM
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Slightly off-topic, but it surprises me that Accutane has not been supplanted. It worked wonders for my skin when I was a freshman in college, but that was rather a while ago and Accutane had been around for a while even then.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:34 PM
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Once you agree that a fetus is a person, then a pregnant woman who drinks is clearly dangerous to others and may be imprisoned.


Posted by: Michael H Schneider | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:43 PM
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Having diabetes doesn't have anything to do with being incompetent. Competence/incompetence isn't really a binary proposition: there are levels of compentence/incompetence. There's a level of incompetence at which commitment is legally permissible. It's a range, really, from that minimum level required for commitment to nearly vegetative state. Because the consequences of failure to regulate chemistry can be so serious, I can see a court being more willing to commit an incompetent person with diabetes in the near end of that range than a person for whom the consequences of incompetence are less likely to be dire.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:43 PM
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93: There are restrains beyond the willingness of physicians to prescribe Accutane to women who are or may be pregnant? Those I'm good with.

Oh my god, are there ever.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:43 PM
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101: are you saying anything more than that behaviors which might pose little risk in a healthy person could be very dangerous to the self of a diabetic, and therefor more likely to justify imprisonment and forced medication?


Posted by: Michael H Schneider | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:46 PM
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I'm feeling a weird urge to write a script that takes an unfogged comment page and runs it through the text-to-speech service on the mac but consistently using a different voice for each commenter, so it would be like listening to a real conversation but without having to schedule a meetup with annoying human meatsacks.


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:47 PM
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104 -- Do we get to choose voices?

103 -- '. . . a healthy but incomptetent person . . . an incompetent diabetic . . . Nothing more than that.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:52 PM
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104: That would be really kind of you. Or how about a script that parsed the commenter's name and put it before each comment and then read the comment, as in "104, Hamilton-Lovecraft. I'm feeling a weird urge ..." Then I could read Unfogged while I cooked or cleaned the kitchen. (I once put on the regular text-to-speech thingie reading a comment thread while also listening to a "dark ambient" (or some such) netradio station; the effect was super eerie.)


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:53 PM
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Charlie, your clarifications still leave me a bit confused. You're just saying that you'd be comfortable with a judge leaning a bit on the near boundary of "incompetent" when ruling about a pregnant woman (or someone with diabetes)?


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:55 PM
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108

105.1: I call Bubbles!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:58 PM
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105: Can I be Christian Bale's Batman?


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 2:59 PM
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108: Trailer Park Boys Bubbles or The Wire Bubbles?


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 3:02 PM
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105- I'd probably have a table mapping commenter names to voice selection, and randomly assign voices to any names not found in the table. It would be easily customized.


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 3:03 PM
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110: I was assuming he meant the Powerpuff Girl.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 3:03 PM
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I call TPB Bubbles if that's not who you meant, Sifu. If 112 is correct, I'll have to fiddle with the PASIIR script to silence you. I have limits.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 3:08 PM
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MJ Bubbles


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 3:08 PM
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Can you do nosflow in a Joanna Newsom voice?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 3:13 PM
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Ah. I may be getting confused between incompetent and incapacitated. NM has adopted a version of the Uniform Probate code, which defines "incapacitated person' as:

"F. "incapacitated person" means any person who demonstrates over time either partial or complete functional impairment by reason of mental illness, mental deficiency, physical illness or disability, chronic use of drugs, chronic intoxication or other cause, except minority, to the extent that the person is unable to manage the person's personal affairs or the person is unable to manage the person's estate or financial affairs or both; "
http://www.conwaygreene.com/nmsu/lpext.dll/nmsa1978/9b0/133a7/13992/13996/13997?f=templates&fn=document-frame.htm&2.0#JD_45-5-101

Which is different than what I thought was the constitutional standard for involuntary committment and forced medical treatment, which is 'danger to self or others'.

That, in turn, is different from capacity in the sense of capacity to make a will, or capacity to enter into a contract. I don't think we use 'imcompetent' anywhere, but I'm probably wrong.


Posted by: Michael H Schneider | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 3:15 PM
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My comments should be understood in the voice of Stefan Gierasch, as Del Gue.

107 -- Let's assign numbers, not because what I'm saying is susceptible of actual quantification, but because it will be more easily understood. 100 is perfectly competent, 25 is the maximum level of competence at which a person may be committed. I can see a judge committing a person with a medical condition at 22, where absent the medical condition s/he might let someone at 20 or 21 stay out.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 3:22 PM
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||
Since this is the law + medicine thread...
|>


Posted by: Merganser | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 3:26 PM
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113: Bubbles is one of the built-in Macintalk voices.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 3:26 PM
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119: That is really sad. Once again reality fails to deliver. Stupid reality.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 3:31 PM
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Gierasch


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 3:32 PM
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Reality delivers in 118. And how.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 3:38 PM
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118 kind of reminds me of that Charlatan book:

In 1917 the charlatan John R. Brinkley experienced what was truly a seminal moment. This so-called doctor, whose diploma had come from a medical school that was "vague, obliging and long defunct" and whose expertise was dubious at best ("if the white coat reassured people, the healing had begun"), was consulting with a 46-year-old Kansas farmer named Bill Stittsworth. "I'm all in," Stittsworth said. "No pep. I'm a flat tire."

Then both farmer and doctor gazed out the office window. They spied livestock. And they experienced a shared brainstorm. Supposedly at his patient's urging, Brinkley agreed to try to restore the man's virility via an unorthodox transplant operation. The farmer wound up with two extra testicles courtesy of one luckless goat.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 3:42 PM
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I remember liking Annie Proulx's "The Goat Gland Operation," which is about this.


Posted by: beamish | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 3:51 PM
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Huh. Somehow I had thought that there were more than a handful of voices, and that they had some tuning options for more variety.

Here's a first pass for you mac users: mineshaft.py. Run from the command line as "python mineshaft.py http://www.unfogged.com/archives/comments_10280.html" or whatever comment thread you want read off to you. By default it reads the Paleolithic Lifestyle Services thread.

Edit the voice_mapping table at the start to force certain voices on certain people.


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 5:03 PM
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It works! But it gives me errors:

ConnectPort: can't find mach server port name = jackdmp_entry.502_default err = unknown error code
Cannot connect to server Mach port
jack server is not running or cannot be started

Is this because I installed the Jack audio server last week but don't have it running? Or because you coded Jack into the script? Anyway, it reads the text fine.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 5:17 PM
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Ah, looks like it's my own slightly fucked audio setup.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 5:19 PM
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LB sounds like StrongSad.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 5:25 PM
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Looks like the code needs to be told to escape ('s.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 5:33 PM
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I can see a judge committing a person with a medical condition at 22, where absent the medical condition s/he might let someone at 20 or 21 stay out.

Thank you.
We have a rather more complicated statutory scheme here. It's not a binary commit/don't commit. We've adopted the least restrictive alternative ideal, and are supposed to craft guardianship orders - or treatment guardianships - or conservatorships - in the narrowest way possible to preserve autonomy:

Guardianship for an incapacitated person shall be used only as is necessary to promote and to protect the well being of the person, shall be designed to encourage the development of maximum self reliance and independence of the person and shall be ordered only to the extent necessitated by the person's actual functional mental and physical limitations. An incapacitated person for whom a guardian has been appointed retains all legal and civil rights except those which have been expressly limited by court order or have been specifically granted to the guardian by the court.

http://www.conwaygreene.com/nmsu/lpext.dll/nmsa1978/9b0/133a7/13992/139f5/139fb?f=templates&fn=document-frame.htm&2.0#JD_45-5-3011


Posted by: Michael H Schneider | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 5:40 PM
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Essear, what's the symptom? Is the problem with parens in commenter names or in comment bodies?


Posted by: HamLove | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 7:08 PM
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Is it random? Or does everyone get an OFE who sounds like some sort of Eastern European? And Sifu sounds like he's taking a bong hit?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 7:18 PM
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131: For instance, when running on http://www.unfogged.com/archives/comments_10271.html,

11 - NickS: 10: Sorry, it was an obscure (and not very funny) reference to an earlier threa in which it was observed that ogged had a pattern of becoming very attentive (not in a bad way) to some female blogger every year or so. I was just noting that H-G has been linking to you a lot lately. I almost didn't post the comment because I didn't want to complain. I just thought it was amusing.

sh: -c: line 0: syntax error near unexpected token `('
sh: -c: line 0: `say -v Kathy \'10: Sorry, it was an obscure (and not very funny) reference to an earlier threa in which it was observed that ogged had a pattern of becoming very attentive (not in a bad way) to some female blogger every year or so. I was just noting that H-G has been linking to you a lot lately. I almost didn't post the comment because I didn't want to complain. I just thought it was amusing.\''
12 - NickS: 10: Sorry, it was an obscure (and not very funny) reference to an earlier threa in which it was observed that ogged had a pattern of becoming very attentive (not in a bad way) to some female blogger every year or so. I was just noting that H-G has been linking to you a lot lately. I almost didn't post the comment because I didn't want to complain. I just thought it was amusing.

sh: -c: line 0: syntax error near unexpected token `('

If I run "say" from the command line, it works on things involving parentheses. But something about the '\' in the line that shows up in the error message might be problematic?

Comments involving the pause/play symbols give similar errors.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 7:24 PM
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Is it random? Or does everyone get an OFE who sounds like some sort of Eastern European? And Sifu sounds like he's taking a bong hit?

Here's what the code seems to be doing: Sifu and LB are given specified voices. Everyone else gets a random choice, but seeded in such a way that it's consistently the same choice for a given commenter every time. I'm not entirely sure if the random number seed/generator in the Python random package will give the same results platform-independently, so it might be possible that the consistent voice you get on your computer is not the same as the one you get on mine. HamLove can enlighten us, presumably.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 7:30 PM
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Is mineshaft.py python 3 syntax? Bad boy is failing to run over here.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 7:51 PM
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Oh, never mind.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 7:53 PM
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135: Per my 132, I think you, specifically, need to take a bong hit for it to work.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 7:54 PM
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Well, now we all know what Sifu's up to.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 7:54 PM
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There must be a more interesting way to handle quoting.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 7:54 PM
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The voices are random except for LB and me.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 7:57 PM
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There's a python 3 now? I'm behind the times.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 7:57 PM
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There is, but it's stupid and annoying and mean and I hate it.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:03 PM
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Blogging adaptations for insane deaf people is a good idea. Unfogged will probably keep falling behind, though, in this new world of blog subcontractors.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:08 PM
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Python 3000's syntax is substantially the same as previous pythons'. mineshaft.py doesn't use it (one of the big backwards-incompatible changes was that print went from being a statement to being a function).

essear/HamLove: the problem is the use of os.system, which requires sanitization of any input that might have characters significant to the shell. Better to use os.spawn, or subprocess.call. (Add "import subprocess" to the top and replace the first two lines of say_it with "subprocess.call(["say", "-v", voice, text])".)


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:09 PM
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Python 3 has been in the works for a really long time, essear. For shame.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:10 PM
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How does the script handle hyperlinks? It would probably be best if it just gave a brief summary of whatever the linked item is.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:13 PM
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essear/HamLove: the problem is the use of os.system, which requires sanitization of any input that might have characters significant to the shell. Better to use os.spawn, or subprocess.call. (Add "import subprocess" to the top and replace the first two lines of say_it with "subprocess.call(["say", "-v", voice, text])".

Interesting. My usual way of doing command-line things is commands.getstatusoutput(cmd). But I guess this is deprecated and I'm, in this respect as well, behind the times.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:13 PM
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I don't like anything that has you pass the whole command a string to be parsed by the shell. Way too easy to get tripped up by refractory input.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:15 PM
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Is it just me, or do other people also find nosflow's command of Python strangely sexy?


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:17 PM
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Mis-posted in the other thread: So there is there a way for us simple people to make it read other threads? I find it oddly enjoyable to have playing in the background.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:17 PM
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Nubile bay-area lurkers, that's your cue.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:17 PM
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See above, Stanley.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:18 PM
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150: "there is" s/b "is there"

I suck at the internet.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:19 PM
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149: From my point of view, the best that can ever be said about anything related to computer programming is that it is not actively unsexy.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:20 PM
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153: it should say "is there there"?


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:21 PM
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149: Yes.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:26 PM
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See above, Stanley.

I keep trying that unsuccessfully. When I click on the thing that I downloaded, it plays the Paleo thread. But I try to run a new command with the suggested code (for instance "python mineshaft.py http://www.unfogged.com/archives/comments_10280.html") and I get errors. I'm doing something stupid, right?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:31 PM
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What do the errors say?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:34 PM
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158: python: can't open file 'mineshaft.py'


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:35 PM
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Hm. Are you sure you're running the command from the directory where the file 'mineshaft.py' is located?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:37 PM
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Although if not, I think your error message would say 'No such file or directory', or something to that effect.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:39 PM
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I think I'm prepared to give up and admit technical n00bery.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:43 PM
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Are you using a Mac or a PC? If you're using Windows, I'm clueless.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:45 PM
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Mac.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:46 PM
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Stanley, I had to point my terminal to where the script was. So "python Users/bavescomputer/Downloads/minshaft.py http://unfogged....."


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:47 PM
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Or, you know, without typos and stuff.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:47 PM
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Are you running the command from inside Terminal? And do you know where you saved the file?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 8:48 PM
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167.1: Yes.

167.2: It appears to be on the desktop.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 9:12 PM
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So: "python /Users/whateveryourusernameis/Desktop/mineshaft.py" and then the url of the comments thread you want to listen to.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 9:15 PM
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With quotes or not?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 9:18 PM
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No quotes.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 9:20 PM
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Yeah, didn't work. I'm sure I'm doing something else stupid and am prepared to give up on the endeavor personally. It's been that sort of 6 months.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 9:21 PM
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Maybe the cats peed on your Mac?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 9:22 PM
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Try "python ~/Desktop/mineshaft.py"? (And see if it works without the URL, before trying an URL.)


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 9:22 PM
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Or maybe a more zero-order question: does anything happen if you just go to the Terminal and run "python"?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 9:24 PM
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Feel free to give up, of course, if the process of fixing the problem is more annoying than the problem itself.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 9:26 PM
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Will you be my life coach?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 9:30 PM
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174: python: can't open file '~/Desktop/mineshaft.py'
[Process exited - exit code 2]

175: Python 2.3.5 (#1, Jan 12 2009, 14:13:25)
[GCC 4.0.1 (Apple Computer, Inc. build 5363) (+4864187)] on darwin
Type "help", "copyright", "credits" or "license" for more information.
>>>

I probably just gave you all access to my checking account, right? Well, there's not much there anyway.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 9:41 PM
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ok ok
stanley
listen to me

i will help you

in your terminal

do like this

"$ " denotes the prompt

$ cd
$ cd Desktop
$ ls -l mineshaft.py

then

tell us what happens when you do that

ok


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 9:45 PM
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179: ls: mineshaft.py: No such file or directory

You people are patient.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 9:49 PM
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Then you see it didn't download to your desktop!

ok stanley

do like this

do what i say

this will help

go back to comment 125 and right-click the link

save it to the desktop

then do the ls thing again

if you get a different message

you should be able to

$ python mineshaft.py http://www.unfogged.com/archives/comments_10278.html

for example

go with god stanley

i believe in you


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 9:51 PM
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go with god stanley

i believe in you

I am so using this on the next tech support email I get. I might replace "stanley".


Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 9:55 PM
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181: Clicking the "Get Info" option tells its at /Users/stanley/Desktop


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 9:56 PM
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its s/b it's


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 9:56 PM
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Huh. And you see it on your desktop and everything? If you run ls ~/Desktop in your terminal, does the output correspond to the other things on your desktop?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 9:57 PM
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185: Nope. says:

ls: ~/Desktop: No such file or directory [Process exited - exit code 1]

And I'm fully prepared to give up and start watching a movie, with a sense of much gratitude.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:00 PM
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neb's tech support is so sexy, I think there's a business opportunity here.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:01 PM
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THIS IS BAFFLING

So if you do this, in a new desktop:

$ cd Desktop
$ ls

You can't give up until this is solved or I go to a concert, whichever comes first.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:02 PM
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Something is keeping Stanley's machine from seeing itself?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:07 PM
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Go write a post or something, nosflow. I give up on this nonsense computer talk.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:07 PM
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This is bizarre. Open a new Terminal window and tell us the output of :

$ pwd
$ whoami
$ ls /Users/stanley/Desktop


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:08 PM
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Something is keeping Stanley's machine from seeing itself?

Maybe at this point he's just fucking with our heads.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:09 PM
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Fun!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:10 PM
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191: That results in a list of files which are on my desktop, which desktop is terribly cluttered and should be cleaned up. I'm sorry, desktop.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:11 PM
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Stanley is too upright to be fucking with us.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:12 PM
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Stanley's shell doesn't grok tilde expansion?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:12 PM
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And

$ ls /Users/stanley/Desktop | grep ines

What about that?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:13 PM
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194: But mineshaft.py is not among those files? And the 'pwd' and 'whoami' bits? Do they tell you '/Users/stanley' and 'stanley'? If so, 186 is utterly mysterious.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:13 PM
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Stanley's shell doesn't grok tilde expansion?

Inconceivable!


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:16 PM
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Note how I used "grok" there—that's how you can tell I'm legit.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:16 PM
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I just ran into an amusing bug, where M/tch's comments interrupted Kraab's comments, so he was talking over her. Rude, M/tch!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:17 PM
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197: it gives stanley-stanleyslongpolishlastnames-computer-2:~ stanley$

198: mineshaft.py is on the (very long) list.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:17 PM
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Stanley just do 'pwd' and report back.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:17 PM
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198: mineshaft.py is on the (very long) list.

Well this is really interesting.

However, I have to go to a concert.

Essear, you take it from here.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:18 PM
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Oh, wait, never mind me.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:18 PM
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198: mineshaft.py is on the (very long) list.

It's there! It's not there! It's... I'm confused.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:19 PM
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Have we tried having Stanley actually cd into Desktop yet?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:19 PM
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I don't actually care this much. I'm going to smoke.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:20 PM
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OK, so to be very clear:

$ ls /Users/stanley/Desktop

gives a list of files including 'mineshaft.py', but:

$ python /Users/stanley/Desktop/mineshaft.py

generates an error message that the file is not found?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:20 PM
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Have we tried having Stanley actually cd into Desktop yet?

See 179 and 180. I'm lost.

Maybe Stanley should just give us all accounts on his machine and let us ssh into it and play around.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:21 PM
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Mineshaft Tech Support is officially a failure, I think.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:26 PM
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Better kick it up to level two. Stanley, go ask on YouTube.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:28 PM
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Your help has now helped! It's reading the Pat Robertson thread. Wow, that was complicated, and I'm dumb.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:36 PM
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The successful code was: python /Users/stanley/Desktop/mineshaft.py http://www.unfogged.com/archives/comments_10280.html


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:43 PM
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Now that Stanley has solved his problem, I register my resistance to peoples' comments being read in assigned voices which may or may not bear any resemblance to reality.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:48 PM
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I guess that should be "people's".


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:49 PM
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There was a chance for people to pick their own voices. Some of us jumped on it, some of us didn't.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:50 PM
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I am currently hacking mine to use the rest of the voices. Should somebody sound like Trinoids? Yes, somebody should.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:52 PM
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217: There was?


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:53 PM
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I'd gotten the idea that the range of available voices was mac derived. I don't even own a mac!

I'll just say this: I'm an alto, okay?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:53 PM
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rfts is now "hysterical": hysterical!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:54 PM
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I'd like to sound like a drunk Mexican. Is that an option?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:56 PM
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Unfogged meets Mystery Science Theater.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 10:57 PM
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I want to be Bruce!

(I'm commenting from underneath the SF Bay!)


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 11:03 PM
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Sigh. No one comments here anymore--it's too empty. I am alone in a bar. But I just beckoned someone via IM to come over. I was on a date-type-thing. It was so-so. She was pretty but I don't feel like we "clicked". Maybe I am expecting too much on the first encounter?


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 11:36 PM
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I am alone in a bar.

Show up with mix-gendered friends. That's my crappy advice.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 11:46 PM
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Well, the trip to the bar was rather impromptu. I got off the train a few stops early just because I felt like it. I am *that* impulsive. I can stay out past my bedtime now. And a friend is on his way. Really. He's not even my Canadian friend.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 11:50 PM
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You have to watch out for the Canadians, or so I hear.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 01-13-10 11:58 PM
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Otto, I am SO proud of you.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 12:47 AM
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im glad everything worked out for you stanley

i knew you could do it

im so proud


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 1:11 AM
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The new nosflow should stick around, and the new and old nosflows should alternate, and the new nosflow should attempt to date read but nothing good will come of it!


Posted by: U. Awl | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 2:23 AM
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I object to the implicit peer pressure that other commenters who have not been attempting to date should start to do so. On the other hand, Emerson left long ago.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:41 AM
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Also, I rate best head.


Posted by: U. Awl | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 4:56 AM
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No more masturbating to Teddy Pendergrass.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:40 AM
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232: If other commenters decided to jump off the Brooklyn Bridge, would you do that too? Look, if dating should inadvertently occur, we should be patient and exercise tolerance. Just know that in not actively attempting to do so, you are doing the right thing.

(I'm *trying* to do the right thing, but this one fellow keeps rather persistently encouraging me to stray from the relationship-free path, and his entreaties are objectively charming, and I really have a hard time letting someone down. But in my heart of hearts, I know that true happiness lies in the not-dating.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:32 AM
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Look, if dating should inadvertently occur...

How did I get to this restaurant? Why am I wearing my nice clothes? Who brushed my teeth?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:46 AM
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this is apostro-fear in five


Posted by: Standpipe Bridgeplate | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:46 AM
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But in my heart of hearts, I know that true happiness lies in the not-dating.

I'm fairly certain that Emerson never made any claims about "true happiness". His only claim was a reduction in suffering. He was too honest to be much of a salesman.



Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:48 AM
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I'm fairly certain that Emerson never made any claims about "true happiness".

Emerson must not have been privy to the full Revelation. True Happiness. It lies in the Not-Dating.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:59 AM
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How did I get to this restaurant? Why am I wearing my nice clothes? Who brushed my teeth?

You may tell yourself, "this is not my beautiful date!" You may say to yourself, "My god, what have I done?"


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:59 AM
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Fortunately for our ostensibly accented friend, in our culture techniques for not-dating are materially less complicated for boys than for girls. I'm going to guess that this is true even (a) in college (b) on the West Coast, (c) of Canada. As to whether FA has what it takes to succeed in this difficult environment, only time will tell.

I root for the other team, though, as a matter of course.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 8:03 AM
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five what?


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 8:08 AM
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239: As I expected! Di Kotimy is aiming to be the St. Paul of the "no-relationship" gospel.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 8:10 AM
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Yea though I walk through the valley of the shadow of dates, I shall fear no romance.

For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son, who did not himself date.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 8:16 AM
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244.2: That's what they want you to think!


Posted by: Dan Brown | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 8:18 AM
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When I say that FA is in a challenging environment, it's comparing little league to American Legion. As a smart attractive professional woman in the Midwest, our Di is playing in the majors. Where, you know, even when not facing future hall-of-famers, an average of .350 would be astonishing.

Neither corked nor juiced; it's a more impressive feat.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 8:31 AM
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246: Those stupid, unattractive, unprofessional women have all the luck.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 8:33 AM
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247: Yet, still probably not as lucky as any shy ordinary-looking man.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 8:38 AM
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248: Those with chronic flatuence are the luckiest of all.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 10:07 AM
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Okay, uploaded a version with your fix, nosflow. Seems to work - listening to the jeans thread it did both a comment with parenthesis and one with pause/play.

I like the way it says "heebie-geebie" with a hard G.

I wish there was more control over the voice, though. :/


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 12:26 PM
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I am a hard G.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 12:27 PM
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Wee models.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 12:38 PM
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251: Regulate, heebie, regulate!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 12:38 PM
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252: The British are odd.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 12:40 PM
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I should send you diffs, H-L. I added the rest of the voices, along with code to de-googleproof Mai Tai and neb's pseuds.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 12:45 PM
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I think next I'd like a persistent state, so it would pick up where one left off on a thread.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 12:46 PM
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It was so-so. She was pretty but I don't feel like we "clicked". Maybe I am expecting too much on the first encounter?

It's always so hard to tell. On the one hand, I generally believe in the go-on-a-2nd-date-if-the-first-one-didn't-suck rule; on the other hand, I don't think the 2nd date ever changed my mind when I thought I didn't click with someone. YMMV.

Either way, it's excellent that you went out on a date!


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 12:52 PM
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Is this a Mac-only thing? Am I the only person here who still uses Windows? That's quite a blow to my self-image. (I normally run Linux, but I'm too lazy to get the wireless to work.)


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 1:04 PM
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There's 'we didn't click' in the sense that 'I'm not feeling the romance' and 'we didn't click' in the sense that 'I didn't enjoy myself'. I went out with Buck a second (and third) time because the first was a pleasant evening, but I wouldn't really say there was a 'click' until several dates into it.

So, you know, if the evening's pleasant enough in itself, give it another try and see if anything develops. If you literally didn't have a good time, I wouldn't bother.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 1:05 PM
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258: I'm all Windows-y myself. But I have no computer skills beyond using software.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 1:06 PM
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258: Windows for me.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 1:08 PM
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essear needs to stop making sense.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 1:10 PM
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261: I use Windows too. And I have no computer skills at all. (except for making italics in comments -- you all taught me that!)


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 1:19 PM
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257, 259: Yeah, I'm not sure what to think. On one side of the ledger, she's smart, physically attractive, and at a similar station in life. And at least from my perspective, our conversation was not overly laden with long pauses or miscommunications. On the other side, our interactions were also marked by relatively few moments where I felt like I had become lost in conversation and had stopped being preoccupied with ensuring I had another topic enqueued for when the present one was exhausted.

So, not bad conversation (at least from my view--who knows what she thinks, or whether she was even really a conscious being at all (how do we know when we cannot directly monitor the mental states of others?)), but also not conversation that flowed easily enough for me to conclude that we could obviously talk for hours and hours. But perhaps I am too Gladwell. Buddy who showed up at the bar downplayed the importance of first date interactions.

I also felt like my, for lack of a better word, "energy", was higher than hers, and it was a bit frustrating to not feel like my energy and engagement was shared by her. I feel like I'm on the defensive after long enough of feeling like I am the more enthusiastic party in an interaction. But she did express tiredness and stressedness, so.

Like I've said, I'm still kind of a n00b at this, so it seems plenty plausible that my reads of the situation and conclusions drawn about it are off.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 2:45 PM
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Have you tried mailing her an ear?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 2:48 PM
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265: The Van Gogh dating strategy??? Highly not recommended!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 2:50 PM
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264: It sounds like the one date definitely didn't provide enough information to judge whether there's anything there. Maybe she really was just tired, or had a slight headache, or who knows what. Few of us can be on top of our game at all times. Maybe she was nervous, and once nervousness is gotten over, the two of you could talk for hours and hours.

I'd say it's worth another date, assuming she's interested in one. The vibe the second time around may well be completely different.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 2:55 PM
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Don't underestimate the seductive potential of a well-prepared ear. Just don't tell her it's yours.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 2:56 PM
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Just don't tell her it's yours.

She'd notice, wouldn't she, when he turns his head? Or at least she will when she goes in for a nibble at the lobe, assuming it progresses to that stage.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 2:58 PM
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Removing an ear says, "I'm really into you because if this doesn't work-out, I've only got one more shot at love."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:00 PM
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(how do we know when we cannot directly monitor the mental states of others?)

Would this even help? After all, how could you be sure that what you were monitoring really was the mental state of another, and not a cleverly-prepared simulacrum? I don't think you should accept solipsism just yet, though—why not call this potentially delightful young lady up and explain to her the situation you're in vis-à-vis other minds, and would she perhaps be willing to give assuaging your worries a shot? True, most people would rather be appreciated for who they are than that they are, but if you think there might be no one at all, they sort of run together.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:00 PM
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269: she might notice that he hasn't got that ear, or any ears, but whether she'd notice that it was his ear before is another question.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:01 PM
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271: Excellent counsel, nosflow! Have you thought about starting an advice column?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:03 PM
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marked by relatively few moments where I felt like I had become lost in conversation and had stopped being preoccupied with ensuring I had another topic enqueued for when the present one was exhausted

I don't think this often happens on first dates, nor with strangers in general, despite those "our eyes met and we stayed up all night talking, never noticing that 12 hours had gone by and neither of us had taken a pee break" stories one hears.

You sound like you're generally pretty self-conscious (as am I), so I'd be cautious about taking this as evidence that you wouldn't have more relaxed conversations with her in the future.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:04 PM
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Or try the ear thing. Whichever.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:06 PM
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despite those "our eyes met and we stayed up all night talking, never noticing that 12 hours had gone by and neither of us had taken a pee break" stories one hears.

I have actually had this happen. OTOH, she was completely uninterested in me romantically, so take that for what it's worth. OTOOH, we're still friends 15 years later (albeit with an interruption of a few years where we fell out of touch).


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:08 PM
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What are you trying to say with the ear thing? That she can talk to you any time, that you'll listen? "You have my ear" is the reassuring message of a superior to a supplicant, or a king to a counselor, not of a lover to his inamorata, and "she has his ear" is a recommendation of one person as a route to another, not an envious assessment of the first as appropriately suited by the second.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:12 PM
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274 over 275. I can't emphasize enough how much I regret having, in my youth, taken Vincent Van Gogh as my dating role model.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:13 PM
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I don't think this often happens on first dates, nor with strangers in general, despite those "our eyes met and we stayed up all night talking, never noticing that 12 hours had gone by and neither of us had taken a pee break" stories one hears.

Totally my first date with AB. Not even kidding. We closed down the reception at the museum. Our first "official" date (the previous one had ostensibly been me letting her know that there was a lecture she might be interested in, and would I see her there) featured a basement gallery lined with life-like vibrators lining the walls, but still not an awkward moment.

That said, it totally sounds like you should give this woman another go, Otto.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:13 PM
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"our eyes met and we stayed up all night talking, never noticing that 12 hours had gone by and neither of us had taken a pee break"

One does here a lot of those stories, doesn't one? Maybe the people who have 12 hour conversations with people they just met are more likely to be storytellers, though.

Thanks for the feedback, all. Maybe I can just send a plaster cast of one of my ears? I rather like having both of them, is all.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:14 PM
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I know nothing about tech support, but bedrest is near and dear to my heart.

It turns out that it has never been proven effective for preventing preterm delivery. Not for twins, not for shortened cervix. It doesn't work. Doing it well has serious risks, including blood clots, fluid in the lungs, and muscle wasting. I've even seen women with pressure ulcers. Nevertheless, it's extremely common for doctors to "order."

The patient might very well have gotten a second opinion that it can't help and might hurt.

As for being required by law to follow a doctor's advice, has anyone here ever been told to stop smoking and lose weight? Did you? Did the cops come? Do you want them to?


Posted by: Shamhat | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:16 PM
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278: Do you have to use duct tape to get one side of your glasses to stay-up?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:16 PM
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282: Duct tape! That could work!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:17 PM
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277: I think the effect is all in signaling. It is a costly, hard to counterfeit expression of interest.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:19 PM
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And MacInTalk brought much joy to my childhood, by the by.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:19 PM
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By that standard, going to prison after taking revenge on her enemies would also work.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:20 PM
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featured a basement gallery lined with life-like vibrators lining the walls

It sounds like that gallery should meet up with Nouriel Roubini's apartment.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:23 PM
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Whoa you guys, Otto's not even sure he likes this girl. He's only got two ears, let's not spend them recklessly.

That said, Otto, your plaster cast idea is crap. You have no idea how to woo a woman.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:25 PM
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I have no idea how to date. I've always just sort-of known interesting men.

I don't know any interesting men now.

I don't have time to "go out" much, but I would make time for sex a couple of times a week.

I would prefer someone who already has kids, because my second husband was younger and didn't, and I felt bad about potentially taking that away from him.

I also am only attracted to men who are smarter than me, and for unfortunate imprinting reasons I prefer physicists.

Where does one shop these days? Should I just put the above on Craigslist and ask for responses with a CV or results from a G-loaded exam?

Or a contest? "Be the first to show me how magnetism is a relativistic effect of a moving point charge, and you'll win a woman who understands that men don't sleep well when they don't get frequent enough blowjobs, and makes the world's best chocolate chip cookies?"


Posted by: Shamhat | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:27 PM
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"I had this lifemask made for you. If you reject me, the next thing you get will be my deathmask."


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:29 PM
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Oh my gosh, Shamhat, if you were in Austin, I could hook you up with about twenty wonderful eligible guys. I'm not sure they'd actually be smarter than you, but they'd certainly be physicists. Or mathematicians, at least.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:30 PM
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290: Some assembly required, but I left you everything you'll need.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:31 PM
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289.last: That makes for a really interesting ad. Huh. I just see all kinds of men hauling out their physics primers in a hurry.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:32 PM
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289: Drive down to Princeton and start hanging out in the IAS parking lot?


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:33 PM
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I understand how magnetism is a relativistic effect of a moving point charge. Laydeez.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:35 PM
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294: In a very thin t-shirt that says "Quantum Packets Boost my Jacket."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:35 PM
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But parsimon is right, 289 pretty much as written would likely make for a highly successful Craigslist ad. (And you'd hopefully get responses from men who use fewer qualifiers than I. Gotta be assertive!)


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:36 PM
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And who don't comma splice. Fuck.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:36 PM
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289: Drive down to Princeton and start hanging out in the IAS parking lot?

Almost all of them are married.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:36 PM
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299: Right now they are. As I understand it, you can jump from one state to another depending on the level of excitement.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:38 PM
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As I understand it, you can jump from one state to another depending on the level of excitement.

I think you also have to be observed.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:41 PM
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301: You're assuming a bit too much about how coherent these people are.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:41 PM
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301: I hear that's a common kink, but I don't think it is limited to physicists.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:43 PM
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289 and 294 bring so many other amusing thoughts to mind, but (a) none of you would know who I'm talking about and (b) my pseudonymity would be even more flimsy than it already is. Oh well.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:43 PM
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Plus, I would bore everyone and kill the thread.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:45 PM
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Also, I only get "hours and hours" talkative when I'm hammered, which is a state best avoided on first dates, I'm led to believe.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:47 PM
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This is why it's best to wind up dating someone you didn't initially intend to date: no pressure early on, plenty of room for the hours and hours of talking, perhaps to your mutual surprise and pleasure, in a state of hammeredness or not. Then maybe one or the other of you eventually says, "You know what? I have this ... idea."


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:56 PM
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I can converse endlessly, but I'm told me babbling is not actually one of my positive traits.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:56 PM
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I'm in Manhattan and wouldn't have time to go all the way to Princeton for nookie.

Unfortunately due to a bad marriage and worse divorce (one of those physicists who went into finance after peace broke out and wrecked the economy--turned out to have a personality disorder rather than just Asperger's), I ended up working nights as a nurse. It's inconvenient.

And thanks, guys. Maybe I'll get to work on this.


Posted by: Shamhat | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:58 PM
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I only get hours-and-hours talkative when there are several people paying attention to me. Then I can get a little heady from the spotlight.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 3:59 PM
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305: Sorry, I got distracted by the girl who came in here to complain about the behavior of MATLAB's nansum function when it is given a vector of all NaNs as input.

OK, so talking is overrated. A future date?


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 4:04 PM
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and worse divorce

Oh, were you the one with the horrid story about the divorce and accusations of abuse and all that? Are things any better?


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 4:07 PM
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Post to craigslist encrypted, pin hardcopy with no email address but the craigslist UID to the BB of your target academic department. Or post in the wanted section of craigslist with a tagline "Physics books wanted." Or maybe " for sale" if postdocs are too young.

Smarter may narrow your scope considerably. Hope that your personal situation is resolving, or at least not getting worse.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 4:08 PM
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289: I would prefer someone who already has kids, because my second husband was younger and didn't, and I felt bad about potentially taking that away from him.

I have to say that this is one of the most frustrating things about dating if you're not in the market for procreating: I've had at least one promising relationship (with a younger man) break off because he still wanted the option of having kids some day, and that couldn't happen with me.

I'd been concluding, sadly and with a bit of annoyance, that this just meant that I should not date younger men, end of story; but maybe just being upfront about it would take care of the problem. And yet that seems so lame, akin to asking someone on the very first date whether he wants kids.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 4:15 PM
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It turns out that it has never been proven effective for preventing preterm delivery.

This is really good to know. I've known a couple of women put on bedrest; I'll encourage any in the future to get a second opinion.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 4:17 PM
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I would prefer someone who already has kids, because my second husband was younger and didn't, and I felt bad about potentially taking that away from him.

I would know a good physicist fitting your description (divorced, has kids), but he's 50+ miles LIRRward of Manhattan, which is even farther than Princeton.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 4:29 PM
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but maybe just being upfront about it would take care of the problem

It can be a selling point. I don't want kids and it is hard to find women who also don't want kids.


Posted by: CJB | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 4:31 PM
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317: It just seems so premature to bring that up before two people have even gotten to know one another. I much prefer the 'let's see where this goes' approach to relationships, and mentioning the long-term relationship goals, or features, one has in mind seems like jumping the gun big time. At least: it would freak me out a bit if someone I'd just met as a romantic prospect suddenly said, "Now, I'd like to be clear: I don't/do want kids."

I'm having trouble articulating what seems problematic to me about this.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 4:42 PM
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Usually reticence about personal desires is attractive-- I want this and I feel that are generally pretty boring unless you know that your interlocutors care. Maybe the problem is in the implied assumption of interest, a less superficial version of specifying preferred dress style.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 4:47 PM
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||

My divorce lawyer office-mate is doing a land office business just now. A post-holiday rush.

|>


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 4:47 PM
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312: "Oh, were you the one with the horrid story about the divorce and accusations of abuse and all that? Are things any better?"

I had been divorced and remarried for 8 years when my oldest daughter from my first marriage needed a bit of leverage and chose to make an accusation of abuse. I have come to understand that she inherited her father's IQ, her father's nose, and her father's personality disorder. It's scary.

My second husband gave up on fighting the charges due to the expense, and he's doing well now. He even has a nice young girlfriend who will be able to bear his offspring.

Despite the weirdness going on with my first ex, I'm not a bad person or a bad girlfriend. I'm still friends with every man I connected with in my life, from my junior high school boyfriend on, with my first husband the only "bad breakup." Even that wasn't all that bad--when he left, I finessed the situation in a way that he didn't cut off all contact with the children. (OK, I instructed my lawyer to agree to everything he wanted so that he would feel like he won, but it worked for 8 years!) I'm financially ruined in the long term, but in the short term I can make the payments and cover my own expenses.

I don't think I'm a grouchy, bitter person, and most people find me reasonably likable. I'm 43 but I haven't let myself go, and I enjoy sex. It seems like there should be options. I just need to get to work, I guess.


Posted by: Shamhat | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 4:51 PM
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It just seems so premature to bring that up before two people have even gotten to know one another.

Dating websites usually have that as one of the standard pieces of information listed so depending on how you are meeting people it might be something you are going to know upfront.


Posted by: CJB | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 4:57 PM
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||

People wonder what our governor is going to do after his term ends. Some say he'll seek to replace Sen. Baucus. I'm thinking Hollywood.

|>


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:02 PM
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Is it reasonable to expect people, as a matter of course (though there are plenty of people who choose single parenthood), to want or not want, or more precisely to know whether they want or do not want, children, in the absence of specific knowledge/stipulation along the lines of "with [name of specific person]?"


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:06 PM
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The whole ear thing upthread kind of freaked me out. Do people really do aural after only a date or two? Kids these days...


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:06 PM
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324: That may be part of what's weird to me about this. I think a lot of people do know, or think they know, that they do/don't want children, in the absence of specification of the partner with whom said children may be had.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:13 PM
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324: Well, I think it's reasonable for them to be able to articulate either yes for sure, no for sure, or depends on circumstances. Not that people don't change all of those positions, but I'd expect most anyone to have such a position.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:16 PM
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320: Cutting out 90% of the usual holiday stuff this year ended up being really nice. Not necessarily sustainable, but nice.

321: Mine Will's client list for physicists who travel regularly to NYC?


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:16 PM
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I have said before that having kids and not having kids are very divergent choices, and that it strikes me as strange to not have a preference or be ambivalent about the choice. The two are not alike.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:16 PM
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The two are not alike.

Undisputed, but similarly distinguishable are the cases of "kids with X" and "kids with Y."


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:18 PM
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What does the fact that they're not alike have to do with it? Have you never before been faced with two options, not alike, and found yourself not equivocal?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:18 PM
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321.last: I hear you. I could have written exactly the same thing. There are options; I hear there's a whole population of (usually divorced) men of roughly the same age who find themselves in a similar position.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:20 PM
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Seems to me that having kids with X or having kids with Y are much more like each other then not-having kids.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:20 PM
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than they are like not-having kids.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:21 PM
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Consider, then, the cases "kids with [person certain]" and "kids."


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:23 PM
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325: That ear thing was partially my fault, so I'm willing to come right out and say, "I'm sorry you are so over-sensitive on the subject of romantic self-mutilation."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:23 PM
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I'm not having kids with lots of people...laydeez.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:24 PM
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I have once, neB, when I had to choose whether to evacuate in front of a fire. But when I try to remember instances, that's the only one that comes to mind. I make decisions pretty fast, and the more divergent the options, the easier it is to choose one.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:25 PM
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321.2: Very sorry to hear about that. That must really pull hard in six different directions at once.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:25 PM
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Really, between evacuating and not evacuating, it was more or less one to you?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:30 PM
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340: Really, neB? Hanging the fruit a bit low, aren't you?


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:35 PM
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What about when the implications of the options are only partially known? "Two roads diverged...", you can tell they'll be very different, but can't tell what either will be like?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:35 PM
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No, they were very different. But I didn't know enough to know which to do.

Having kids or not-having kids would be even more different than that, every day, all the time. Which is why I don't understand people who don't know which they want. (Although I understand they exist and respect them and their expression of the beauty of human diversity.)


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:37 PM
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What about when the implications of the options are only partially known?

"The way of the samurai is one of immediacy, and it is best to dash in headlong."


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:37 PM
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Are you asking me, LB?


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:38 PM
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345: Well, sort of asking, and sort of saying that that was how I felt about having kids -- I didn't have a very strong opinion about whether it was a good idea, because I felt as if I had absolutely no idea what my life would be like with kids. I wanted to, in that revealed preference kind of way, but if you asked me what my reasoning was, I wouldn't have had a coherent thing to say.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:41 PM
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Australia and Italy are very different, but I don't necessarily have a strong preference for which one should be the next "big" trip.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:42 PM
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No, they were very different. But I didn't know enough to know which to do.

I know they're very different. Otherwise it would be irrelevant.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:43 PM
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Yeah, having the second set of siblings arrive when I was twenty gave me a lot of information to work with.

Yeah, but I bet that if you were going to move to one of them within the year and live there for the rest of your life, you'd find ways to develop a preference.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:44 PM
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My cat has developed a habit of wetly sneezing on me and/or my food. She must be trying to give me some strange evil new disease.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:47 PM
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you'd find ways to develop a preference.

You might commit yourself to finding out more about each of them, maybe visit once or twice, etc., but that's a far cry from "I make decisions pretty fast, and the more divergent the options, the easier it is to choose one".


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:48 PM
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Yeah, having the second set of siblings arrive when I was twenty gave me a lot of information to work with.

I can see that. I'm the youngest of my generation, among family we spent time with, and I had kids before my friends did. So I had pretty much no direct experience beyond teenage babysitting.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:49 PM
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She must be trying to give me some strange evil new disease.

Hm. Was the cat recently stung by a bee?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:51 PM
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Hm. Was the cat recently stung by a bee?

No, but she hunts spiders for a living.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:52 PM
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354: Okay, good to confirm. Your description sounded as though it was not the Bee's Sneeze.

(I'll be here all week. Try the veal.)


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:54 PM
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Ask not for whom the cat sneezes. It sneezes for thee.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:54 PM
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343: Which is why I don't understand people who don't know which they want.

I'm going to assume that all of this is prefaced with the assumption that the person with whom you would be having kids is a terrific person with whom you would like to have kids, and who also wants to have them, with you.

What's been unknowable to me, in advance, is whether or not I'd like to have kids regardless of the father. If it turned out that I didn't find myself in a relationship with someone who wanted to have kids with me, then I wouldn't have them. If I did, then we would. In that sense, then, I didn't feel strongly one way or another, in advance of the situation. I'm not sure why this is such an unfathomable position to take.

(Of course, this all turned out to be moot in my own case, since it turned out that having children would have been a significant health risk.)


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:55 PM
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As between Siberia and Thailand, I can choose pretty damn fast, because they are not alike. I don't even need to know much about them. Ohio and Iowa might take more effort and knowledge about the details. But really, when you are talking about two very different lifestyles, either of which you'd be living with every moment of the day, I personally don't understand ambivalence.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:56 PM
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I went from thinking no way would I have kids, to (upon falling for my partner) thinking definitely kids with this person someday, to KIDS NOW PLEASE. People who have kids: how long did it take you to conceive? Several months in, I am trying not to let the internet fuel crazy infertility fears, but if we need help I don't want to delay needlessly before we get it.


Posted by: Grace Coolidge | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:56 PM
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358: Pick Ohio. They're very different.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:58 PM
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It's like you're an alien from another planet. You couldn't imagine thinking that this would be ok, and this other thing would also be ok? EVEN THOUGH they're not the same?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 5:58 PM
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"Several months" is way too soon to worry.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:00 PM
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I can imagine thinking two unalike things would both be OK. But if the two are mutually exclusive, I can't understand not-knowing which I'd rather have.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:00 PM
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362 to 359


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:00 PM
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359: I thought the rule of thumb was a year, but I dunno. Are you doing all of the temperature-taking/mucus-inspecting stuff? I've heard good things said about this book along those lines.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:02 PM
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I figured that out, Moby. But thanks for the extra precision.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:02 PM
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But really, when you are talking about two very different lifestyles, either of which you'd be living with every moment of the day, I personally don't understand ambivalence.

The unstated assumption is that you have to make a decision right away. Applied to the topic at hand, it makes your argument a bit circular.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:02 PM
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And I say that more because the temperature-taking and so forth bit sounds entertaining in a science-project kind of way, rather than that I think there's any real need to go there if you're not that way inclined.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:03 PM
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There's fifteen or twenty years to make the decision, and my lifestyle, the active decision making is only for ten of those years. But it is pretty final once that passes.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:05 PM
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359: No pregnancy for a while during a high-stress period, near-instant pregnancy when the stress went away. Have you considered a long, sex-filled vacation?


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:06 PM
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Have you considered a long, sex-filled vacation?

Ladies....


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:07 PM
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369: Right, it's possible to be at a point in your life when you have to make a decision. That's different from saying everyone should have a well-defined preference at all times.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:08 PM
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371: God knows the tourist industry around here could use all the help it can get.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:09 PM
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359: Taking Charge of Your Fertility is indeed very useful. I conceived quickly (after getting the hang of my cycles for fun before we were making any efforts in that direction). I know people who took several months, and many others who needed help to get there. The official rule of thumb is that a year of no luck is when things become significant, but if you are doing all the charting stuff and haven't conceived after six or more cycles, it doesn't seem like it would be nuts to start investigating things on a more formal basis.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:09 PM
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God knows the tourist industry around here could use all the help it can get.

As the bishop said to the actress.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:09 PM
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I actually don't remember how long we were trying with Sally, but it can't have been long -- say, less than three months. With Newt, we decided to start trying in November, and I got pregnant despite using a diaphragm in October. So, negative one month.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:11 PM
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374: My further impression of the charting bit is that it can be diagnostic -- that is, if you started doing it, and noticed after two or three months that 'huh, my temperature doesn't do any of the things it says in the book', that might be a signal to wander into a doctor's office with your graph paper and ask if something was going on.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:13 PM
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Thanks for 362, Moby. LB, my body makes the mucosal changes obvious, and we do pay attention; the temperature-taking seems like it would be clinically interesting but somewhat destructive of libido.

NPH: yes. No dice. Fun trip, though.


Posted by: Grace Coolidge | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:15 PM
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the temperature-taking seems like it would be clinically interesting but somewhat destructive of libido.

? You know you're supposed to do it first thing in the morning (like, literally -- slap the snooze button on the alarm as you put the thermometer in your mouth). I never actually did charting, being lazy and disorganized and prone to getting knocked up at the drop of a skirt, but you don't have to take your temperature during sex or anything.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:19 PM
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I wander into doctor's offices carrying graph paper all the time. So far, no baby, but I did get an infection in jail that I call Leonard.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:19 PM
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378.2: In our case the transition was from prepping for and then second-chairing a 5-month jury trial to unemployed (we moved). Maybe a longer trip?


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:22 PM
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379: er, yes. I quite like morning sex, is the thing.


Posted by: Grace Coolidge | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:22 PM
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Can someone explain the temperature/mucus thing to those of us un-bekidded?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:24 PM
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A cycle day 3 FSH level is a good way to gauge your ovarian reserve. Just get a requisition from your doctor and go to the lab and have your blood drawn 2 days after your period starts.

If you've ever had chlamydia, it's not a bad idea to check to see if your fallopian tubes are patent. It involves squirting a dye vaginally and taking X-rays to see if the dye makes it out through the tubes and into the abdomen.

The older you are, the less time you can afford to spend trying to get pregnant naturally. Typically, women over 35 are encouraged to get checked out after 6 months of trying.

That seems counterintuitive, but if you are 27 and (unknown to you) will never get pregnant naturally because you have blocked tubes, your chance of getting pregnant with IVF is essentially the same at 28. If you are 36, waiting a year significantly decreases your chances. Ditto if it turns out there's a male factor.

Plenty of doctors will cheerfully do pre-conception workups, including not only checking out your girlie parts, but also genetic counseling.


Posted by: Shamhat | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:25 PM
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372: That's different from saying everyone should have a well-defined preference at all times.

Indeed. A life in which one had a well-defined preference on any particular matter at all times would be really stressful, to my mind: prone to frustration and disappointment every step of the way.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:25 PM
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382: You know, I actually thought of that after I'd posted. To be the voice of doom, I used to as well, but kids have shot that to hell -- I daydream about when they go off to college for that very reason.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:26 PM
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a well-defined preference on any particular matter at all times

Naw. It is really fucking awesome to know that you are where you want to be.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:28 PM
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(Thanks, all, for the reassurance and book recommendations. I have to run but will check back in later.)


Posted by: Grace Coolidge | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:28 PM
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I can't post links nicely, but here's a good overview of observable changes during the menstrual cycle, including temperature, mucus, and sensations (as well as photos of her cervix).

http://www.beautifulcervix.com/cervix-photo-galleries/photos-of-cervix/


Posted by: Shamhat | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:29 PM
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383: If you take your temperature first thing in the morning every day with a very very accurate thermometer (and you're an ovulating woman) and graph it on a chart, it will go up and down in a degree-or-two range over the course of the month (where month means menstrual cycle, rather than calendar month). The pattern in which it moves allows you to pinpoint exactly when you ovulate, and so exactly when you're fertile.

The texture of cervical mucus also changes over the course of the month in ways that give the same information, from slippery like an egg-white when you're fertile to sticky/pastier when you're not.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:30 PM
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358

... But really, when you are talking about two very different lifestyles, either of which you'd be living with every moment of the day, I personally don't understand ambivalence.

Makes sense to me. You don't have kids and they look like a lot of trouble but people with kids generally say they are worth it.

Even if you have experience with both options you might still be ambivalent if they have rather different good points and bad points. And being very different might make it harder rather than easier to rank them.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:30 PM
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People who have kids: how long did it take you to conceive?
The first one was like two or three months, maybe? The second one? A day, I think (good timing following a long absence).


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:33 PM
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It is really fucking awesome lucky to know that you are where you want to be.

Alternatively: It's really fine to know that you're okay with where you are.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:34 PM
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How is the little one treating you?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:34 PM
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389-90: Thanks. I didn't know that.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:36 PM
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It isn't luck, parsimon. I thought about where I wanted to be and went there, having tried other places. (There's all sorts of luck behind that privilege, but besides that.)


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:36 PM
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395: It's also the basis for the non-insanely reckless version of the rhythm method (me, I'd be too nervous to rely on it still, but I understand that if you've got the charting down, it's got a reliability comparable to condoms).


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:39 PM
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Which is why having a preference and satisfying it makes my life better than not-knowing what I want.

It is hard when my preference can't be satisfied. But since I'm extraordinarily privileged, I can mostly satisfy my tastes.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:40 PM
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396: I was talking about the luck behind the privilege.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:41 PM
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Rory was conceived less than two weeks after I stopped taking the pill and we decided to start trying. I vindictively hope that if and when UNG and the UGF start trying (she's already told me all about her plans for a home bith!) That they have excruciating difficulty.

The up-front about reproductive desires thing makes perfect sense to me. Maybe not first date stuff so much. But early on. Personally, I'd rather like another baby. And I'm not especially enthused about dating-qua-dating (see supra). Were I to find myself dating someone who didn't want kids, I'd appreciate knowing it sooner rather than later before I wasted a bunch of (clock is ticking!) time. I can imagine, in theory, that someone could come along who was so fabulous it wouldn't matter if kids were an option.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:45 PM
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Naw. It is really fucking awesome to know that you are where you want to be.

So either (1) you have perfect knowledge of exactly what's down every road not taken and how you would have reacted to that, or (2) you're really good at telling yourself a story about how the life you're living is the perfect one for you. (1) is implausible. (2) is fine and healthy, but no less fine and healthy than "eh, I make my choices and I live with them and mostly that works out OK."


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:58 PM
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No more fine and healthy, that is.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:59 PM
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No more masturbating to Teddy Pendergrass.

This usage is dangerously close to becoming reflexive for me, and I know the first time I utter it to bewildered stares in the elevator at work is going to be very awkward. And it's not a statement whose meaning is very easy to explain--most attempts to do so will only dig you into an even deeper hole.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 6:59 PM
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Here's the basic process, written in frosting."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:00 PM
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404: What, may I ask, do the ladybugs signify?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:01 PM
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403: The great thing is that if you screw up in the near future, it can be part of the first impression you make at your new job!


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:02 PM
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405: That's a question best answered by a professional baker.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:03 PM
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406: Then, after the explanation is made, there will be no more masturbating to the new job.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:04 PM
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Charting: fertilityfriend.com


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:04 PM
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406: Which is good, because it's always best to set yourself a low baseline so you can later blow people away by demonstrating basic competence.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:05 PM
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409: Because God knows a sheet of paper is way too complicated.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:06 PM
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I'm also someone whose body probably wouldn't allow for pregnancy, what with my spine pushing various organs out of their spots and my tailbone curving up inside. My partner's in her 40s and not interested in pregnancy, and I think adoption would have been our first choice anyway.

So now we're waiting to see if we'll be matched with a child or two same-gender children ages 3-16(ish) before we hit her deadline in June. So much of it is out of our control and I'm not sure if having a million options helps. I like seeing other peoples' stories here, though.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:06 PM
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It has sample charts of patterns associated with various outcomes, similar to the book recommended above.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:08 PM
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413: Yeah, I'm just being an asshole. And get offa my lawn.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:12 PM
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All is for the best Megan-life in all the possible worlds; isn't it obvious?


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:13 PM
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But if the two are mutually exclusive, I can't understand not-knowing which I'd rather have.

See, this is strange to me. What does mutual exclusivity add that makes knowing which is preferable easier?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:16 PM
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401: Or (3) an ability to carefully think through what you want and then not second guess yourself when you get it. Knowing you are where you want to be doesn't mean you know there is no possible parallel universe that could be better; it just means you are sufficiently content with the universe you live in not to spend all your time fretting over the alternatives. (Mind, I'm personally incapable of such a thing. How on earth do people not spend their spare time immersed in endless thoughts of "what if"? But it seems like a very pleasant way to live. And, actually, doesn't sound all that different from being content with what life sends your way without committing to any firm preferences in advance.)


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:20 PM
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"I'm sorry you are so over-sensitive on the subject of romantic self-mutilation."

If you think you might have to say this, I would recommend not watching this with your partner.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:22 PM
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401: (2) is fine and healthy, but no less fine and healthy than "eh, I make my choices and I live with them and mostly that works out OK."

I think Megan's narrative requires her to feel that she personally has muscled and/or engineered her way through to the awesome arrangement she currently enjoys.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:23 PM
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And being very different might make it harder rather than easier to rank them.

Shearer's observation here rings true to me -- it's much easier for me to choose between two similar options, because then their points of difference are easy to enumerate, evaluate and compare. Two extremely different options, and I'm floundering.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:23 PM
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421

420: Is it like comparing apples and oranges?


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:26 PM
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Yes, which is hard! Whereas comparing satsumas and mandarins is easy, satsumas, every time.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:28 PM
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394: she's great; nice healthy lungs.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:29 PM
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Now go back to cutting off your ear, Otto.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:29 PM
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417.last is right. The "not second guess yourself" part is doing all the work in 417.first and can be performed by slackers as well as by engineers.

"What if?" is not your friend.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:29 PM
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I'm completely paralyzed by minor, unimportant decisions.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:30 PM
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Two extremely different options, and I'm floundering.

Do you own a dartboard? Or a quarter?


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:30 PM
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Figuring out which job to take and where to move for years? Easy! Figuring out where to eat lunch? Terrifying and difficult!


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:31 PM
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"What if?" is not your friend.

"What if?" has stood by my side through thick and thin. It never abandons me!


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:33 PM
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422: Likewise, tart, crisp Granny Smiths versus mealy, sweet Fujis. Granny Smiths, every time.

424: Yes'm.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:33 PM
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Braeburns for the win.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:34 PM
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Chehalis.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:35 PM
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Gesundheit.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:37 PM
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429: That's got to be exhausting. Maybe you should rest.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:37 PM
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I have never had a Granny Smith I would call "tart" and "crisp". Granny Smiths are always somehow disappointing. Fujis and Galas, when good, are excellent.

However, the best apples of all are Pink Pearls and Ashmead's Kernels, hands down.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:43 PM
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Fruits are incomparable. I can't believe they were ever placed in the same category.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:44 PM
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I can't decide if I should go get something to eat and then come back to the library or if I should go home and makes something to eat and stay there.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:45 PM
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"What if?" has stood by my side through thick and thin. It never abandons me!

Me too.

And yet . . .

There's madness to the method when you pay the piper twice. Once when you start to worry, once again when you begin to take the future on the chin. I know that you think worry is your ever-faithful friend, cuz nothin' that you worry over ever happens in the end. And there might be somethin' to it, but it sure gets in the way of fun today. What you say we try and have some fun today.

Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:45 PM
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437: I understand there are people like you who have trouble deciding between mutually exclusive options, and though you are strange, I respect you.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:47 PM
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435: I'm not very good at talking about food, OK? All I know is that 99% of the red apples I've had in my life have been mealy bland shite. Green apples, on the other hand, have often been good.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:47 PM
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434: You think? See, not thinking about the "what ifs?" seems unfulfilling to me. It almost seems like maybe different people have different personalities and thrive on different approaches to life. Crazy!


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 7:51 PM
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Whatever works, Di.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 8:02 PM
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The older you are, the less time you can afford to spend trying to get pregnant naturally.

Yes to this. It may also be worthwhile considering that trying-unsuccessfully-to-conceive sex can get very stressful and all-around not fun pretty quickly, and is best avoided.

Also, Honeycrisp apples rule.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 8:07 PM
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However, the best apples of all are Pink Pearls and Ashmead's Kernels, hands down.

Incorrect. Arkansas Black for teh win.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 8:09 PM
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It took me six months to get a puppy after I conceived the desire. She's from a litter of only three. The owner of the sire explained that the owner of the bitch had dun it rong. "You have to leave them together unti they're sick of each other and don't want to be in the same county, let alone the same kennel." On a more positive note: spayed Monday, fully recovered now. No grandpuppies for me.

This isn't helpful, is it? I felt the need to re-enact the reason for the analogy ban.


Posted by: Michael H Schneider | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 8:13 PM
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I felt the need to re-enact the reason for the analogy ban.

Are you saying you spayed your kids?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 8:18 PM
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Why did I think you already had a dog -- a standard poodle, I'd thought. Is the new puppy an addition to the old dog, was the old dog a past dog, no longer around, or am I just imagining things?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 8:18 PM
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443.last gets it exactly right. Appliest apples ever.


Posted by: Gabardine Bathyscaphe | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 8:22 PM
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Had I any kids, I would have spayed or neutered them. But I don't. Unless Heebie's colleague knows of some.

I had a standard poodle from 1990 to 2001, when she died. This is the new standard poodle, which I think I mentioned back last May or so. From the same breeder as the first. I picked her up in CA in September. Your memory is good.


Posted by: Michael H Schneider | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 8:26 PM
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I think that the type of apple matters less than where you buy them. Super market of 7-11 checkstand apples? Often bad. Farmstand, farmers' market apples? Often good. But I will ALWAYS get at least one mealy one, no matter the varietal or the store, because God hates me. (Actually I just got like 3 pounds of apples from my CSA unexpectedly, and even the one that I dropped on the floor from great height is pretty good.)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 8:41 PM
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That of should be an or, up there.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 8:42 PM
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Honey Crisp apples are indeed the best. I wish I had never tried any other apples, because I would still know about Honey Crisp apples being the best, and I wouldn't have wasted all that sad, lonely non-Honey Crisp apple eating time.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 8:49 PM
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While I'm nattering on about food, I would like to state for the record that I achieved near dinner nirvana tonight. First, I finally managed to perfect my home-made hummus (thank you, Paula Wolfert). Then, because I was feeling in the mood for a steak-house dinner without the expense, most excellent steak (that I finally got to the exact state of rare bordering on medium rare that I like), creamed spinach and roasted cauliflower. And yeah, a rather lot of hard cider, thus the nattering. Plus, left-overs!


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 8:53 PM
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It's also the basis for the non-insanely reckless version of the rhythm method (me, I'd be too nervous to rely on it still, but I understand that if you've got the charting down, it's got a reliability comparable to condoms).

And unlike the rhythm method (as practiced for religious reasons, anyway), you can still have sex during fertile periods -- you just have to use some other kind of BC.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 8:53 PM
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I haven't seen Honeycrisps out here, but my one Arkansas Black experience confirms my suspicion that Josh is a crack smoker.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:02 PM
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453: Yum!


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:06 PM
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I roasted a duck tonight. Holy fuck is that a pain in the ass. Roast duck: a lovely thing to order at a restaurant.

Sure was tasty, though.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:08 PM
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I so, so do not want to get pregnant that I feel like I always need 2 forms of birth control -- currently, the pill and condoms. I know that each is highly reliable (when used correctly, etc.), but I don't know if I can deal with using just one. (And I'm not going to get a hysterectomy. I believe in avoiding major surgery whenever possible.)


Posted by: Mary Todd Lincoln | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:10 PM
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But if you roast it at home, you get all the fat! I'm pretty sure they won't send you home with a doggie bag of fat at a restaurant.

And, yum!


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:10 PM
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I haven't seen Honeycrisps out here, but my one Arkansas Black experience confirms my suspicion that Josh is a crack smoker.

I can't help the fact that you're wronger than a wrong thing, nosflow.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:13 PM
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457: What in particular made it more of a pain than roasting any other fowl?


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:14 PM
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Yes, we did get all the fat, that's true. And arguably the recipe I opted to follow was somewhat more complex than strictly necessary. But we looked at two recipes, the less complicated of which called for a hair dryer. I am of the opinion that good roast duck is a pain.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:15 PM
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Marcella Hazan's command to chop the duck liver, mix it with rosemary and sage, and smear it all over the inside of the duck cavity was a wowza good idea.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:18 PM
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I like Paula Wolfert's recipe for roast duck in Slow Mediterranean Cooking. (Or something like that, I can't quite remember the title.) I didn't find it particularly difficult but I sort of like complicated recipes.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:19 PM
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But we looked at two recipes, the less complicated of which called for a hair dryer.

Marcella Hazan's?

Paula Wolfert seems to think that roasting-derived fat can't be used for as many things as more gently-rendered fat.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:19 PM
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Boy, can I call 'em or what.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:19 PM
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461: well, the first problem was that it didn't defrost enough. Okay, can't blame the duck for that one. But then I had to trim all this fat before cooking it, then I had to steam it which involved constructing an ad-hoc steamer from aluminum foil and a roasting pan, then the recipe called for a hair dryer post-steaming but I didn't have one so I had to set up this whole complicated apparatus with fans in the hallway, then our house kinda filled with smoke look it was just complicated, basically because they have so damn much fat all over the place.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:19 PM
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Something about duck and punctuation just doesn't mix.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:21 PM
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Also keep in mind I can barely cook a chicken.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:25 PM
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Sifu, that does sound complex. I say, pat yourself on the back and then luxuriate in your duck fat and full belly.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:27 PM
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Okay. Tell us about your steak technique.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:28 PM
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I wonder how warm duck fat would have to be to be liquid enough to allow one to bathe in it.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:29 PM
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Oh, I don't do anything special. Usually I do the sear on the stove-top then high heat in the oven thing (is that from Cook's Illustrated or something? A friend taught me); tonight I made Nigel Slater's steak au poivre, which just calls for thoroughly peppering your steak (and salt), then into the pan with an indecent amount of butter (and a little oil to prevent burning), 3-4 minutes on each side, then a quick pan sauce with alcohol of your choice (cognac tonight) + MORE butter. Relatively high heat.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:33 PM
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(I did that because while the steak was of decent quality, it wasn't superb and I wanted it to taste luxurious.)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:35 PM
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ALWAYS pepper your salt.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:37 PM
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It's very important, nosflow. The key to cooking success.

I need more cider, but the bottle is out. This saddens me.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:39 PM
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When will the bottle return?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:44 PM
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Ok, the bottle is out. Has anything else in your apartment got any?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:45 PM
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Nothing else in the apartment has cider, no. So sad. (I did not know if I would like it, so I just bought one liter. Now, I know I should have bought two!) And if I mix my alcohols I feel ill, and I would like to avoid that.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:50 PM
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I am convinced that the alcohol-mixing thing is psychosomatic.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:52 PM
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I used to think the same way as you, nosflow. I blithely drank away, and after three epic two-day hangovers, and multiple smaller ones, I've decided there must be some truth to it, for me at any rate, and have stopped doing it.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 9:56 PM
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Sigh. I got Pizza Hut at the train station for dinner. I envy you all.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 10:00 PM
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I can ship you my left-overs, Di. There's enough for one more dinner!


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 10:02 PM
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Hey, don't feel bad, Di. I just had leftover risotto.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 10:02 PM
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Thanks guys. I do have a steak in the freezer, which I have now decided will be defrosted for the weekend.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 10:07 PM
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I am eating chard, chickpeas, red onion, green onion, almonds, mushrooms, dill, kalamata olives, olive oil, and balsamic vinegar. I did have a bigass chocolate chip cookie earlier today, though.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 10:31 PM
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I think you need to put some butter in there, somewhere.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 10:37 PM
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There's a mushroom on my eyelid,
There's a carrot down my back,
I can see in the distance a vast quantity of beans.
To you I'm just a flavour to make your soup taste nice.
Oh my God! Here come the onions and, I don't believe it,
at least a pound of rice.

There was a time when bacon sandwiches
were everyone's favourite snack.
I'm delicious when I'm crunchy, even when I'm almost black.
So why you make a soup with me,
I just can't understand.
It seems so bloody tasteless,
not to mention underhand

Now there's no hope of getting out of here,
I can feel I'm going soft.
Dirty waters soak my fibres,
the whole saucepan's getting hot
So I may as well resign myself,
make friends with a few peas,
but I just, I can't help hoping
that a tummy ache will bring you to your knees.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 10:38 PM
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Butter is for wusses.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 10:42 PM
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I think the thing with the mixed alcohol is that one's hangover is as bad as the worst of the alcohol one consumes. That, and that variety and volume of alcohols tend to correlate. In general, clear and expensive spirits are best and funkily fermented things (geuze, mead) are worst.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 10:52 PM
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Oh, and broccoli. There's broccoli in this mélange, too.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 10:56 PM
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I had always assumed that ethanol was ethanol.

There are obviously a lot of other things in the drinks one consumes, and some of it (in cheap distillates especially) does you no favors, but until there've been actual reproduced studies in which all the subject consume the same amount of ethanol I won't buy it.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 10:57 PM
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variety and volume of alcohols tend to correlate.

This is probably an explanation for what happens to me - at a certain point in drinking I begin to lose the sense that having more is in fact a bad idea. This tends to happen only in situations where multiple types of alcohol are available to me.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 11:05 PM
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Fusel Alcohols. Wiki links to a study in which they give hangovers to shrews (presumably the rat-orgasm antiparticle) and find fusels blameless, but I'm skeptical. If you're curious, you could always consume 40 oz of any product labeled "High Gravity", and all will become clear. Eventually.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 11:06 PM
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Right, fusel alcohols, I couldn't remember the name and was just coming up with "esters" for some reason. In higher quantities in cheap distillates because the tails aren't excluded (or not as well). Also applejack produced by freezing.

That doesn't really substantiate the "mixing" rule, though, because you could mix a lot of different low-fusel stuff, or not mix only one higher-fusel thing.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 11:08 PM
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Honeycrisps are not the best apples. They are one of the most consistently tasty apples, but their peak isn't as high as some other varieties.

But I like tarter apples.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 11:12 PM
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Wait, honeycrisps aren't tart? how can they be esteemed?

Fuselöle, Aldehyde, Restalkohol.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 11:13 PM
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That video sucks. Maybe this is better.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 11:14 PM
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My understanding is that distillation of higher-quality spirits involves the cutting off of more of the heads and tails; it means less volume, which helps to explain the expense. Some of the aromas you get in the rejected fractions just smell like headache.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 11:18 PM
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If you redistill the rejects, can you get some usable middles out of them?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 11:22 PM
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Yes.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 11:24 PM
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I am convinced that the alcohol-mixing thing is psychosomatic.

Many years ago, after two rounds of Long Island iced teas, three of us convinced ourselves that it would be OK to move on to beer because the adage is "beer then liquor, never sicker" implies that you should be fine if you reverse the order. Seven pitchers later, that turned out not to be true. Probably as close as I've ever come to killing myself with alcohol. In hindsight, puking in your sleep without waking up is kind of a scary thing and I'm glad I was sleeping on my side.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 11:26 PM
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||

One of my good friends from high school is getting married this October and I'm in the wedding - not my favorite thing at all, but, well, that's what being a good friend is all about, right?

But, I just want to express my absolute loathing for the wedding industry. The dress shop where we will be purchasing the bridesmaid dresses gives out discounts if all the dresses are ordered at the same time. Sounds great, but they demand that you have a measurement session so that they may order up for you one ugly dress that you'll never wear again. Thus, it's been requested that I drive 600 miles round trip not just once but twice! to have the dress fitted properly. (Or, optionally, I've just been told, I can pay someone to take my measurements professionally here.)

Here's the deal. I could understand multiple fittings were it my actual wedding. Or if it were a really expensive dress. But no. We're talking $100, pre-discount (and actually, thank you, bride friend of mine, I appreciate that). I buy more expensive clothing (alright, originally more expensive) off the rack with nothing but my dress size! Why, why, why is it considered necessary to do this sort of thing?

Also, I'm irritated by the way they pitch these things. In case you couldn't tell, said friend is more traditional than I, and very much into the wedding culture. She says, quite earnestly, that the storekeeps have informed her that such fitting sessions are an excellent way for the bridal party to bond, and that she really should try to make sure we all make it to both. I don't want to bond! I don't like the other girls! I will never see them again in my life!

Ok, phew. Sorry that was so long. Needed to get the rant off my chest.

|>


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 01-14-10 11:32 PM
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503: Easy! Just tell the bride you're boycotting heterosexual weddings in the name of equality. Unless gay marriages are legal there, you're out of it. Or you could be like me and not be friends with any marriageable people who are not already married. I have managed not to be invited to any weddings in the last five and a half years.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 12:15 AM
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(Or, optionally, I've just been told, I can pay someone to take my measurements professionally here.)

I did this for my sister's wedding since I was on the other side of the country during the measurement phase. The bridesmaid dresses didn't fit at all.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 12:37 AM
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Also, I think the tux ended up being slightly too large. (No one noticed - at least my sister didn't think so when I mentioned it - but the jacket felt a bit loose. No big deal, I guess.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 12:39 AM
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I think the thing with the mixed alcohol is that one's hangover is as bad as the worst of the alcohol one consumes. That, and that variety and volume of alcohols tend to correlate. In general, clear and expensive spirits are best and funkily fermented things (geuze, mead) are worst.

Mead isn't funkily fermented, is it? You just do it the same (roughly speaking) way you do sparkling wine, don't you?


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 2:26 AM
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I've made a few batches of mead back in the day. It's just like homebrewing beer.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 4:20 AM
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That's reassuring. I've got a crate of mead in the cellar (actually at a mate's house but cellar sounds better) and I was rather worried that I had half-a-dozen litres of undrinkable honey-alcohol there. How long did you let it age? Any helpful tips?

(Did you ever try making rhubarb (or any other exotic) wine? Found this most excellent book about housekeeping which includes, amongst the tips on how to make a window-frame and so-on, heaps of recipes for rhubarb, orange, elderberry etc wine. I am keen to try one of them but worried it will go horribly wrong.)


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 4:32 AM
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It's been a very long time. I do recall brewing a batch shortly after Rory was conceived and serving it for her baptism. It wasn't great. I still have a 1.5L bottle of it tucked away for when Rory hits 21 and am hoping it improves with age or that she'll at least appreciate the sentimentality. We brewed a sparkling one with ginger which I remember really liking, but I have no idea how long that aged. I seem to remember it taking longer to ferment than ales, and using champagne yeast. I should perhaps go out and get myself some equipment an explore this hobby again.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 4:59 AM
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According to this page, the longer you age it, the better.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 5:03 AM
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I had thought up a recipe for a dry mead with gran cru style spicing that I always imagined would be delicious. I really ought to make it one day, just so I'll know.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 5:08 AM
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Buck brews, and has made some very decent mead. Champagne yeast is right, and Di is right that it needs to sit in the bottles for an awfully long time compared to beer -- like, more than six months before it tastes good, possibly.

If it's too fresh, I find it has an unpleasant aftertaste -- kind of wet-cardboardy. But give it long enough and that taste goes away.

Di, you should get back into it -- it makes Buck very happy. (And means he's very popular at his gym, where he hands out samples to get feedback.) Ginger is good in mead, as you say, and concord grapes also make a very pleasant addition.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 5:55 AM
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I buy more expensive clothing (alright, originally more expensive) off the rack with nothing but my dress size!

Another of the annoying parts of the WIC is that dress sizes for wedding-related garb seem to have nothing to do with dress sizes in the rest of the world.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 6:28 AM
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the wedding culture

I am saddened that this phrase exists and has descriptive value.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 6:57 AM
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I have no idea what it costs to have measurements taken professionally, but I can't imagine that it's more than the gas to drive 600 miles.

Too bad, though, that your friend's princess-for-a-day fantasy includes not just an apparent sisterhood of matching women, but an actual sisterhood of matching best friends. She probably already mentally pairing each of you -- the single ones anyway -- with the guys in the wedding.

I've always thought very ill of the WIC; really, honest, it's not just having a 23 year old daughter . . .


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 7:11 AM
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505, 506: Did you have to pay? I was able to get measured for a tux for free, when I was in the same boat.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 7:11 AM
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three of us convinced ourselves that it would be OK to move on to beer because the adage is "beer then liquor, never sicker" implies that you should be fine if you reverse the order

That's right--the full phrase is "beer before liquor, never sicker; liquor before beer, never fear". So your inference was solid.

I don't think the phrase is necessarily gospel, though.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 7:16 AM
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519

Women Infants and Children, the government program?


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 7:17 AM
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520

Wedding-Industrial Complex.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 7:18 AM
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521

Maybe Buck could brew up my gran cru mead (I'd planned to call it Gan Pooh -- isn't that clever?) and report back.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 7:26 AM
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My understanding of the WIC size problem is that it's about vanity sizing -- a modern, say, 8, is a 1950s 14 or so. Readymade clothes sizes have changed a lot, but sewing patterns and custom clothes are still sized like they were decades ago. So, annoying, but not really a particular WIC bit of malice, just historical weirdness.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 7:28 AM
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523

I love the WIC.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 7:31 AM
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521: If you have a recipe, or sketchy ideas toward a recipe, send it along: Buck's always playing around with new stuff, and we'll mail you some of the results. (There's the occasional oddity -- a beer flavored with grapes and rosemary that was undrinkable, but makes a nice gravy base, an alcoholic rootbeer that's just kind of foul -- but mostly things turn out well.)

(Buck has a clever name problem as well -- a cherry lambic where the fermentation got stuck and had to be restarted got saddled with Cripple Kriek; the mead flavored with Concord grapes is Thoreauly(Thoreau for Concord, that is) Bzzzare.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 7:34 AM
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When my sister got married half-way across the country, I just walked into the local store where I bought my last suit. After five minutes and zero dollars later, I had measurements and the tux fit fine. My minor example of male privilege, let me revel in it.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 7:41 AM
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O.K. Done with my reveling, but I hope nobody was waiting for me to finish.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 7:51 AM
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527

Just tell the bride you're boycotting heterosexual weddings in the name of equality.

Too late for that, and she's the sort of person who would be genuinely hurt if I held my principles over her happiness. (And she knows I've been to weddings recently, so it would be lying, and that would suck.)

that dress sizes for wedding-related garb seem to have nothing to do with dress sizes in the rest of the world.

Oh, so true. Friend is very upset that she ordered a 10 (she's a 6 in "normal" clothes) and it doesn't fit quite right. Instead of going up one more size, she's exercising like crazy.

includes not just an apparent sisterhood of matching women, but an actual sisterhood of matching best friends.

In fairness, the other girls like each other quite a bit, and they're nice, and I think it is important that we work together to make sure she has a nice time with all of this. But I have nothing in common with them beyond my friend, so it's that awkward, forced cheer stuff that I tend to have problems with.

So, annoying, but not really a particular WIC bit of malice, just historical weirdness.

But they've changed fairly predictably - at least, when I was sewing, I knew what size I had to get in patterns to match what size I was in the stores. This should not be something that requires two fittings. But I am just going to have my friend who sews a lot take my measurements and then hope I don't gain or lose weight between now and October. (Another thing that seems to make this ridiculous.)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 11:09 AM
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528

Are you trying to make me revel again?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 11:13 AM
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529

Instead of going up one more size, she's exercising like crazy.

Arg, just fucking go up a size, Paren's friend. No one will ever know. If you end up with a 12, it doesn't actually mean you're too fat to live.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 11:17 AM
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You mean they don't print the size of the bride's dress in the wedding program?


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 11:18 AM
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529 was actually me talking to my 13-year-old self, who decided if I ever was fat enough to wear anything bigger than the jeans I owned at that time, I would kill myself. I never have bought anything bigger than that size, but when I find myself buying exactly that size, I do actually have to remind myself that sizes vary. It's so stupid.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 11:21 AM
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532

530: They should print it in large type on the front and back of the dress, like a football jersey.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 11:24 AM
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532: And the groomsmen could wear LED signs giving their BAC throughout the ceremony. You'd probably have to remove the sign for the reception as the bartenders might use that as an excuse not to serve them.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 11:37 AM
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529, 531: I know. I was very concerned, actually, when I heard about all of this because she's had problems with eating disorders in the past. I tried to suggest that she should just order the 12, but it wasn't the time or place to say anything more serious when she told me, and I am not sure how to deal with it from far away (especially when our friendship is really just a few phone calls here and there and seeing each other at the holidays and lots of great memories).


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 11:43 AM
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I'm declaring this on-topic for the original post. I think my wife is going to go into labor in the next few hours, and it's freaking me out. Since this is the second time, I've been incredibly blase about the whole thing until now. To calm my nerves, maybe I'll start drinking heavily. Sure, my wife'll be pissed, but someday it'll be a cute story. Right? Right?


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 11:49 AM
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Wow. Good luck.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 11:51 AM
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537

It's baby time at Unfogged! How come you people never mention that your partners are pregnant?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 11:51 AM
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535: That's worse than my ear advice. Good luck, best wishes.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 11:51 AM
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Yay, more commenter babies! Second babies are really nice -- I think you'll be pleasantly surprised by how much better you are at the whole process this time through. (The whole process meaning baby care; labor, of course, you're in a peripheral support role for.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 11:52 AM
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Congratulations in advance, Walt!


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 11:52 AM
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539: But still not peripheral enough to be drunk.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 11:53 AM
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542

You can drink, but not heavily.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 12:01 PM
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543

If you do drink heavily, your best excuse is to cut-off your ear.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 12:06 PM
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Careful with the drinking, Walt. Father Alcohol Syndrome is no laughing matter.

Also: congratulations, and best of luck.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 12:06 PM
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Thanks, everybody!

When I drove to the hospital for the first one, my wife said I fulfilled every TV stereotype of the husband driving his laboring wife to the hospital ever.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 12:17 PM
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My mom's last meal before my 36(!)-hour labor was White Castle, and I turned out great. So you should go to White Castle.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 12:36 PM
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I've always thought very ill of the WIC; really, honest, it's not just having a 23 year old daughter . . .

Don't worry, CC. I'm willing to live in sin with her.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 12:41 PM
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includes not just an apparent sisterhood of matching women, but an actual sisterhood of matching best friends

The matching fetish is so annoying. If it's that important that everyone match, get 'em those cheap polyester graduation robes. Otherwise, tell everyone to wear something nice and shut up.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 12:56 PM
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Wow, more babies (good luck, Someguys!). The commentariat appears to be having entirely more sex than they let on.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 1:11 PM
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Oh, and congratulations, Walt! Please be sure to dress your kids in matching outfits as often as possible.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 1:23 PM
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I will, and I will drive 600 miles to get the measurements made, in solidarity with Parenthetical.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 1:32 PM
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Congrats Walt.

I was thinking, nos, more along the lines of asking Di and/or Emerson to pay her a visit.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 1:35 PM
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Be sure to have bonding time, Walt. That's essential.

And congrats on your impending child!


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 1:35 PM
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Just don't drive 600 miles like a stereotypical TV labor-husband and you'll be fine. Well, also don't do it while drinking heavily. But survive the labor and enjoy the fruits of it! Congratulations to the family.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 1:36 PM
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Just don't drive 600 miles like a stereotypical TV labor-husband

Indeed, find a closer hospital than that.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 1:48 PM
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Hey, every year at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway they manage to drive 500 miles within a fairly small area, so who's to say 600 miles implies a distant hospital?


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 1:52 PM
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517: I can't remember if it was a small fee or just free.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 2:10 PM
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My wife declared that she feels better, and is now watching the many violent TV shows that she's TiVo'd. (The only TV show she found too violent was Dexter, and she had to watch an entire season before she came to that conclusion.)


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 2:50 PM
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558: eekbeat finds Dexter too violent. I tell myself that I'm okay with it, because they don't fetishize the violence. But I don't know what I'm talking about.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 5:11 PM
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Thanks Di and LB.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 7:05 PM
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I've never seen Dexter, but whenever it gets mentioned I invariably think of this show instead and am momentarily confused. Violence? What violence??


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 7:05 PM
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561: Racist.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 7:06 PM
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Dexter is bizarre indeed in its somewhat casual treatment and depiction of horrifying violence. People here at some point castigated the various Law and Order series for their intolerable sex'n'violence routines, and I couldn't help but wonder why Dexter might pass in that case.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 7:14 PM
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Haven't seen Dexter, but also mix up the name with Webster. Go figure.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 01-15-10 7:22 PM
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In which comment thread did the birth announcement end up?

Thanks!


Posted by: Shamhat | Link to this comment | 01-16-10 7:46 AM
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A comment thread from the future... future... future... No baby yet. Babies are so unreliable. This must be why we don't let them vote or drive.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 01-16-10 9:17 AM
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I also find Dexter too violent. If Jammies is watching it, I'll stop and watch for a while, but there is always at least one scene that is so gory that I cover my eyes.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 01-16-10 9:55 AM
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Someone needs to do a Webster/Dexter mash-up. Someone get on that right away, please.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 01-16-10 10:35 AM
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Haven't seen Dexter or Webster, so I usually think people are talking about this.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 01-16-10 10:43 AM
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I know a guy who a) doesn't talk much, b) always sounds negative when he does, and c) loves Dexter. I already have my "But he seemed so normal!" speech ready for the TV cameras.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 01-16-10 1:03 PM
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I am a puss about violence. My mom can't bear hearing a lot of curse words. My dad won't watch anything with sex in it. We don't get to watch a lot of movies together.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 01-16-10 1:10 PM
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571: Pixar?


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 01-16-10 1:19 PM
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