Re: It's for you

1

This post is brought to you by I really need to sleep.


Posted by: Standpipe Bridgeplate | Link to this comment | 02- 2-10 10:48 PM
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You could do what I do and use Elvira as a ringtone.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 2-10 10:51 PM
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Something about this post makes me think, "Harry Mathews".


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02- 2-10 10:51 PM
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2 is addressed to the post. The effect of the Oak Ridge Boys on insomnia has not been studied.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 2-10 10:54 PM
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The Mistress of the Dark might have interesting effects.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02- 2-10 10:57 PM
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I often mistake change rattling in my pocket for my phone vibrating.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 02- 2-10 11:04 PM
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You should leave your phone in the back seat of a cab.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 02- 2-10 11:05 PM
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It won't be too long before I'm a cinnamon bun short of a Madonna.

Or a 4'33" short of a John Cage. Look on the bright side!


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 02- 2-10 11:14 PM
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That's why my phone is on silence. And now every time it's silent at hoe or work I think my phone rings.


Posted by: Martin Wisse | Link to this comment | 02- 2-10 11:27 PM
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Spurious pattern recognition is getting me down.

Conspiracy theorist.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:03 AM
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Let us examine the unspoken assumption that one must answer a ringing phone. Consider the wisdom of Charlton Heston in 55 Days at Peking: "Open a letter and you have to read it. Read it, and you may have to answer it."


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 5:25 AM
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6: Didn't the NYTimes do a piece on phantom cell calls a few years ago? I used to get lots more, now that I have specific music linked to callers, I don't.

IMX it's difficult to force the theme (my default) from "The good, bad, and ugly" onto random street or office noise.


Posted by: Biohazard | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 5:58 AM
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My ringing tone is Bloodgroup's Chuck, so there are very few circumstances when this is an issue. Also, I can receive phone calls in total privacy as 90-odd % of the population howls and flees as soon as it goes off.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 6:04 AM
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Because I still don't own a cell phone, all I hear is the voice of God.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 6:18 AM
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I was recently at a deposition of a pretty high corporate guy who testified that he never read any email on which he was merely a cc. Life's too short to waste on messages primarily intended for others.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 6:25 AM
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15: Because nobody being deposed has any reason to not know something.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 6:50 AM
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I am still thinking of going with Willie Nile's "Cell phones ringing (in the pockets of the dead)". At least give the someone a chuckle as they load me into the meat wagon.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 7:00 AM
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16 -- Everyone believed him.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 7:14 AM
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18: You try becoming a corporate big cheese without being a convincing liar.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 7:15 AM
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I'm more likely to accidentally ignore my phone ringing. But I have been woken up a few times by imagining the front door bell ringing. (I know I am imagining it because C has been there awake, wondering why I've jumped out of bed.)


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 7:15 AM
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19, appendix: And if you do succeed, can I have a job?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 7:16 AM
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18: Everyone? And I thought I was uniquely naïve.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 7:22 AM
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No matter how naive you get these days, it's impossible to keep up.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 7:28 AM
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Diaeresis elided for commenting speed.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 7:28 AM
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22: I'll believe you are naïve when I read that you're getting married.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 7:29 AM
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25 was me. I was too focused on my umlaut.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 7:30 AM
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I often feel my cell phone vibrating in my pocket when my cell phone is not in my pocket.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 7:36 AM
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20: I'm not the sort to wake up all confused - barring genuine sleep deprivation*, I'm pretty much alert and aware of my surroundings by the time my eyes open, let alone feet hitting the floor. However, one time in college (when genuine sleep deprivation was pretty common), I came to awareness sitting on the edge of my bed, shaking my unresponsive alarm clock, as my roommate shouted to get my attention and inform me that the fire alarm was going off.

* as opposed to "I haven't had an 8 hour night of sleep in three days."


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 7:37 AM
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#2, 5. She was a tightrope walker and the Mistress of the Dark?


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 7:40 AM
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25: Bite your tongue! Should you ever read such a thing, I do hope there will be an intervention swiftly assembled. But I certainly have believed some really stunning corporate bigwig lies in my day...


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 7:42 AM
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29: Unrelated, I think. "Giddy-up-a-boom-boppa-boom-boppa-bo now" doesn't seem very dark, thought I suppose having your heart on fire could be taken literally.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 7:43 AM
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Tough crowd.

He was kind of sheepish about it, because in the particular situation it would have been better for him to have known some stuff. But he's a busy guy and, maybe it's because he came up through the ranks, and runs a unit that actually produces real physical stuff, but he totally sold it.

Moby, I'm as big a cheese as my company will ever have. Don't call me, I'll call you.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 7:47 AM
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I can haz bonus?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 7:52 AM
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it would have been better for him to have known some stuff

Indeed. It strikes me as incredible that someone dumb enough to think he could just ignore all those emails would rise to the top. [/naivete]


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 8:01 AM
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32, 34: Actually, I could buy it in some circumstances. Ignoring e-mails is one of my productivity tips.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 8:03 AM
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My other productivity tip is to avoid learning how to work the voicemail system. If somebody has the option, they'll spout random, ill-formed thoughts on a recording and make it your responsibility to figure out what they want and if it is even possible.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 8:05 AM
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35: But you have to have *some* system for filtering out what you can or can't safely ignore. "I'm just a cc" seems like a pretty stupid system.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 8:07 AM
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36: Actually, I figured out a great system for that situation. I use the forward message function to send it to my assistant and tell her to call the rambling idiot back and figure out what he wants.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 8:12 AM
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I imagine it would be pretty consequentially stupid to ignore ccs (cc's?) from, say, the CEO.

I used to mistake the phone just bouncing around in my pocket for vibrating. I guess that happens less often now; maybe a new phone.

Last night I sat near someone who had the most distinctively annoying ring I'd heard in ages, and yet seemed not to notice it ringing for at least 10 seconds.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 8:13 AM
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37: It is true that you do need a system. In my situation, I have group of collaborators and colleagues who would fill a small school bus. One of them is the only one who can give me a raise, so that's the top. Then another half-dozen have too much grant money to ignore. Next comes another three or four who know more than I do about something that I want to know more about and they go next. Then comes the office manager who will remind me if I've forgotten anything important, like my parking pass renewal. Everybody else gets skimmed or sits in the inbox until I get caught-up.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 8:14 AM
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My other productivity tip is to avoid learning how to work the voicemail system.

Ha! When I started my current job, my office contained a phone and a big fat book about how to set up the phone. I took one glance at the long explanation of how to use voicemail, thought "fuck that", and never bothered to figure out how to use the phone. If people are desperate to leave me a voice message, they can call my cell.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 8:16 AM
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42

send it to my assistant

Sigh. If only I had a minion assistant.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 8:18 AM
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43

A person can get away with all manner of idiosyncratic shit if they're good enough at what they do.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 8:19 AM
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43: Or underpaid.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 8:26 AM
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Whose email client separates directly addressed from merely cc'd messages? The dude's story is fishy.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 8:43 AM
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Whose email client separates directly addressed from merely cc'd messages?

Mine marks them differently.


Posted by: CJB | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 8:51 AM
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Personally, I've heard the "I don't read cc'd e-mails" line too many times when it was too convenient for the witness. And too often when the same witness could coherently recall and analyze cc'd e-mails that supported his version of whatever story he was telling.

But who knows? Sometimes dogs do eat homework.


Posted by: widget | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 8:55 AM
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My cell phone is usually set to vibrate, but when it does make a tone, I think the tone I have it set to is a waltz. Or if that's not the case now, I know it has been at times. Because I'm that classy. And there's definitely no risk of it fading into the background noise or mistaking it for someone else's.

I need to find some better way of filtering stuff I can safely ignore. It hasn't actually got me in trouble yet, but once it's been embarrassing and another time I just plain faked knowing what I was talking about. (I probably could have confessed and got back to him later that day with an answer I could have been confident of, and if I had known about the problem in advance I would have, but I just plain forgot about it.)


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 8:56 AM
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43: Sure. But ignoring emails that were specifically addressed to you (even if on the cc: line) strikes me less as "idiosyncratic" and more as "not doing part of your job". Believe me, I know all about getting away with idiosyncracies...


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 9:01 AM
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49: Wouldn't it depend on what your job is? I'm often at sea when trying to fathom the habits and techniques of people whose work consists mostly of managing or coordinating others. I could see where somebody managing something might be expected to read everything that crosses their desk, but I fail to see why I should be expected to pay attention to every one who has access to a departmental e-mail list. If I were capable to dealing with large numbers of people at once, I'd almost certainly have a different profession.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 9:13 AM
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50: You're underestimating yourself, Moby. You do an awesome job dealing with all of us here at Unfogged.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 9:17 AM
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51: Maybe, but this is different. None of you can make me go to a meeting.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 9:21 AM
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Also, while we're on general office-related griping, argh. I'm on a team for which my main responsibility has been creating a matrix (archive, database, workbook, whatever you want to call it). It keeps track of quotes from about 65 documents sorted into 50 different categories, as determined by subjective judgment calls made by three different reviewers. Some of those quotes have different classifications as well, such as whether they advocate X, Y and/or Z. This archive has been stored in three different places since it was created, and several people have preferred to work in it by e-mailing copies between themselves or saving a copy on their desktop and saving it back over the master copy when they're finished. One document has no ID number, and a good fraction of them have more than one.

Obviously, keeping this straight is a problem. When one of the reviewers found one error at the 11th hour - and ironically, this one was caused by multiple ID numbers for the same thing, which means it's harmless and easily fixed - he asked for a peer review. OK, fair enough. Someone offers to check my work and she said she'd have it in a week.

Three weeks later, it's only half done and she's left the office. She flagged 21 purported errors and right now I'm going through and hoping that some or indeed any of them are harmless and easily fixed like the original one. The meeting tomorrow is not going to be fun.


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 9:24 AM
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53: That story reminds of one definition of stress that I have heard -- "responsibility without authority."

It doesn't sound like you can really be responsible for version control errors.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 9:27 AM
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53: See, that's why I stopped being friendly.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 9:30 AM
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I fail to see why I should be expected to pay attention to every one who has access to a departmental e-mail list.

Agreed. That's why I said "specifically addressed to you" -- ignoring crap sent to a mailing list you are included on is a different story. I ignore most emails addressed to "All Attorneys - Chicago." But if "Di Kotimy" appears on any address line, I have to assume the sender wanted me to read the email. If I read the email and it appears pointless, I might send a snippy reply asking why the person my boss just wasted my time. But that gets filed under "idiosyncratic shit you can get away with if you are very good at what you do underpaid.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 9:37 AM
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54: Thanks. Obviously, some mistakes really will be mine, because there is a lot of information to keep track of, but I'd be amazed if most of them are. Half my preparation for tomorrow's meeting will be figuring out how many of the errors found so far I can disclaim and/or convincingly argue aren't errors at all and just looked that way to the reviewer. The other half of the preparation will be figuring out to do with the remaining as-yet-unreviewed part.

But the thing that really bugs me is that it seems like this was all preventable. 90 percent of the work done on peoples' own computers instead of the master copy didn't have to be. I know this can't be the first project which experienced some of these problems - for example, I think every such project has to deal with multiple ID numbers - but if there's any standard way to handle them I don't know what it is. And so on.


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 9:40 AM
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I enjoy (because I cannot stop it) the spiral of pointless e-mails. Some subset of the recipients ignore the mass e-mails about some form that needs to be completed because they get too many e-mails. The administrators respond by sending three e-mails about the next task that needs completed. More people start ignoring e-mails from the administrator. The administrator then figures if three e-mails get 50% responses, six e-mails are bound to get 100%. It is sort of like currency in Zimbabwe except that the vending machine is still full.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 9:44 AM
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There is a way to handle collaborative editing-- version control, written guidelines for edits, and formalized workflow. Doing that winds up costing more and taking longer, feels different than doing your own thing. But no clusterfucks, and if there are problems, you can untangle what happened and not do it again next time. The project manager's choice not to do this should be on the agenda.

A key point is the ability to store independent edits and merge or choose later, so no-one can lock others out of working.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 9:49 AM
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58: Heh, I'm not seeing that at work - spiraling e-mails are rarely pointless here - but it's hitting me at home some. I started using meetup.com relatively recently, and there's one group that's just getting started so the schedule is still getting played around with and organizers are trying new things and stuff, and it seems like everyone replies to every e-mail instead of using the Web site or replying to the original sender alone. It almost makes me want to change my e-mail address to another one I only use for spam-heavy services, but there are other groups with a higher signal-to-noise ratio.


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 9:51 AM
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58: And then, inevitably, some jerk hits "Reply All" to apologize for ignoring the first 5 reminder emails. Then three bigger jerks Reply All to chastise the first jerk for improper use of the Reply All option...


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 9:52 AM
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I keep getting put into these emails about meetings that have no description of the meeting, just "WILL YOU ATTEND THIS MEETING?" and some buttons offering to put it on my calendar for me. There's usually some kind of title to the meeting, which inevitably has nothing to do with me, and no information about what my role at the meeting would be. I've ended up attending them enough to wonder if the person sending them just doesn't like to be alone in her office with anyone, because it's usually just her, me, and a third person, and no one addresses me, responds to me when I speak, etc. I've started ignoring the ones I can't imagine having anything to do with. I'm not traveling to the campus and back for an hour of listening to other people talk about something random.

I hate my job.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 9:55 AM
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62: That's great. I mean, obviously, it's annoying to you, sorry, but it's typical of office problems in a great way. Is it always the same person?

Are rules of etiquette really such that if one is invited to a meeting for which one has no apparent reason to attend, one cannot simply ask "why?" Or could you in some situations but not with this particular person?


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 10:02 AM
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it's usually just her, me, and a third person, and no one addresses me, responds to me when I speak, etc

And you haven't asked her why she keeps inviting you to these meetings? Do you just enjoy the occasional dose of surrealism in your life?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 10:05 AM
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Pwnèd.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 10:05 AM
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The main problem is that no one knows what I do, but they like my job title and think it's fun to have a "Thing I Do" listed as attending various meetings, even if they have no interest in my input. That's how I got hired, in fact. Someone in admin heard about people at other campuses doing "Thing I Do" and thought it would be fun to have a "Thing I Do" running around. So my job is incredibly stressful because everyone assumes that my job is doing whatever thing they just thought of that very second.

I'm friends with people who do "Thing I Do" elsewhere, and their jobs have, like, descriptions. They have time to work on projects related to their job titles. They're considered experts on "Thing I Do" and get training and spend most of their working hours at home developing things. My job involves going to meetings, trying to find something to contribute to the conversation, and being told, "That's not what we're talking about right now," or that my ideas might work at some fancy-pants hippie academy for douches, but not for "our" students.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 10:12 AM
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61: Relevant.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 10:19 AM
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Most of the emails come from the person who hired me, who is the closest thing I have to a supervisor, and seems to hate me. I'm sure she rues the day she offered me the job, as I rue having taken it. But ever since then, it's been the number one task on everyone's list of important tasks to fucking waste my time and humiliate me as much as possible.

I think the main problem is that this school is trying to seem like they're interested in experimental, cutting-edge pedagogical stuff, and I marketed myself as someone who does experimental, cutting-edge stuff. The profs I work with think it's great and I love working with them. But on the level of admin and program organization, everyone seems to think their job is to put me in my place, remind me that I am dependent on them, and make fun of the work I do.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 10:19 AM
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54.1 has painful resonance with me. I'll never again accept a position where I have responsibility without first ensuring that I have authority to actually make people do what I say. My first job after grad school was in a lab where I had responsibility for a bunch of things including safety, but the PIs on the project routinely told students to go ahead and do stuff I'd explicitly forbidden (like bypassing interlocks). Pretty much everyone figured out that if they didn't like what I said they just had to talk to a PI and they'd get permission to do whatever. We didn't have a fatality thanks to pure luck.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 10:22 AM
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We didn't have a fatality thanks to pure luck.

God protects fools, drunks, and children. Graduate students always hit at least two of those categories.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 10:25 AM
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(like bypassing interlocks)

Didn't they realize that they could end up destroying our entire dimension that way?!


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 10:27 AM
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Let's say you had a chicken sandwich (broiled chicken and mayo on Italian bread) that you forgot to take out of your bag when you came into the office. How long could it have been sitting at room temperature before you don't eat it? Let's assume you aren't Brock.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 10:31 AM
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72: I'd still eat it for lunch. But perhaps you'd be best off assuming you're neither Brock nor me.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 10:33 AM
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73: I'm fairly certain I'm going to eat it. I remember in grade school we'd all set our bag lunches on the counter every morning and eat them three hours later. But back then I used Miracle Whip because real mayo was too flavorful for the Midwest.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 10:35 AM
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72: I wouldn't worry at all about eating it for lunch -- in fact I pack an unrefrigerated lunch daily, and it reasonably often incorporates mayo.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 10:40 AM
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I am within a few blocks of the ER and I have a ton of sick days. Why not?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 10:42 AM
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72: A few hours should be fine, I think. I can't find anything in the first few links on Google about exactly how long it takes, but room temperature doesn't seem as bad as some conditions. This says that most kinds of mayonnaisse actually help prevent food poisoning.


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 10:43 AM
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76: But be sure to save some for your baby.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 10:46 AM
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78: I don't keep mine around the office.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:07 AM
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79: Surely you must have an extra in the car.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:22 AM
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80: Don't say that. You have no idea how afraid I was of doing that back when he was small.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:24 AM
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72: Yeah, seriously, unless your office is totally overheated, I can't imagine this being an issue. Among other things, the first hour or two, it was still closer to fridge temp than room temp.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:24 AM
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82: It's been over a half-hour. I should be fine. Maybe I'll go get some Swedish Fish, just in case gelatin and sugar can entrap harmful bacteria.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:29 AM
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80, 81: Oh, please let's not go there...


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:29 AM
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80, 81: A woman in town was just arrested for "leaving her baby in a locked car in subfreezing temperatures."* Because leaving your baby in an unlocked car is so much more secure, and because the car interior was surely the same temp as the exterior - if only it had been 80 degrees outside!

Honest to god, the hysteria surrounding parenting these days is fucking insane.

Oh, and the baby was placed with social workers while the woman awaits a hearing. Because that's awesome for a baby's welfare.

* the article says for "at least 15 minutes;" that's probably above my limit for that being just fine (I'd say ~10 minutes is about what I'd consider acceptable, depending on circumstances, like can you see the car/baby from wherever you are), but the response is still insane. I realize this is a well-worn subject around here.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:30 AM
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83: This may be a stupid question, but in what respect are Swedish fish Swedish? When I was in Stockholm, there were candy stores all the hell over the place but their inventory comprised mainly chocolates and fudges (the Swedes seem to like vanilla fudge a great deal), and I didn't see many gummy things.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:32 AM
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86: See here. And, apparently, I was wrong about them having gelatin.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:36 AM
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I mess-up the link. Go to wikipedia yourself.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:36 AM
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87: Huh. I was sort of hoping for an odder story.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:39 AM
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89: Its wikipedia. Just write a story with more oddities.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:41 AM
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And more apostrophes.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:41 AM
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If you are a bigshot of sufficient stature*, 90%+ of the emails that carry your name on the cc line include you solely for CYA purposes. The balance of risk favors ignoring these. If you are a CEO, only the board can fire you. Is the board going to fire you because you failed to read an email on which you were cc'd? Unlikely. Will they fire you because you ignored wrongdoing, or gave your tacit consent to a disastrous decision that was duly brought to your attention in a cc'd email? Quite possibly.

If your sniveling, ass-covering subordinates don't have the cojones to address an email to you directly, it isn't important enough for you to read.

*haven't actually reached that stature myself, but if I did, I would avail myself of the privilege of ignoring cc'd emails. I do however, filter out mail sent to mailing lists in which I am one of more than 10 addressees.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:41 AM
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68: Sorta related: I was at a gathering of slightly underemployed smart people the other day, several of whom work for a large local public sector institution. They were complaining that one of their colleagues has been allowed to create a 15 minute podcast every week, and email it out to something like 350 employees in their division. So basically, it's like they have 2.2 FTE worth of people whose job is listening to this person's podcasts. (Assuming everyone did, which they don't, but still.)

Ah, institutions.

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As of last night, I am officially a Democratic ward-heeler in my precinct.
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Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:41 AM
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93: If you lived in Pittsburgh, that would mean the potholes on your street would get fixed.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:43 AM
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93.2: !!!! Anarchist ward heelers! Is that like asking, uh, a cat to herd people?


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:44 AM
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Lawyers send many e-mails to recipients who will never read them, not least out of a passive-aggressive desire to inform the client that the lawyer was in the office at 2 a.m. on Saturday.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:48 AM
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96: Or to show that they know how to set the e-mail client to send a message after a delay.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:56 AM
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You say passive-aggressive, I say good career management. One step up from that is receiving an email from a colleague at 2 am, and replying to it at 2:20.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:56 AM
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94: If I lived in Pittsburgh I'm sure someone would've roughed me up on the way to the caucus to make sure I didn't actually attend.

95: I know, I know. Nobody else really wanted to do it. (Our precinct gets 20 spots for the Senate district convention [where the gubenatorial nominees are first advanced], we had 13 people show up.)


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:58 AM
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80, 81: Oh, please let's not go there...


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:59 AM
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One step up from that is receiving an email from a colleague at 2 am, and replying to it at 2:20.

Did this just this morning! It was a super duper urgent request from the boss in another time zone, no less.


Posted by: KR | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:00 PM
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One step up from that is receiving an email from a colleague at 2 am, and replying to it at 2:20.

I love doing this.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:01 PM
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72: I had the same thing happen a couple weeks ago -- homemade chicken salad that I'd really been looking forward to, left in my bag rather than transferred to the fridge. It was fine, and I take a late lunch.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:03 PM
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Anarchist ward heelers!

Anarchists are inspired by Obama, Sher Zieve tells me.

"Did you hear of any reports from the ObamaMedia about the Obama-inspired black-masked goons' attack on a Maricopa County police officer and her horse? I didn't think so. It seems as if every time some think that Obama can't get any worse, he does."


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:03 PM
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If my lawyer is working on my case at 2 AM I would assume he or she is completely dysfunctional. That's a time when only chronic procrastinators facing a do-or-die deadline should be working, or people working the night shift. Obviously I don't understand how lawyering actually works.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:03 PM
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105: Lawyers work long hours. To make-up for it, they get to invent prepositions like "wherefortheonabout".


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:04 PM
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105: Law is a service business; the client's schedule may be aggressive or optimistic, but the work still has to be done.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:07 PM
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105
That's a time when only chronic procrastinators facing a do-or-die deadline should be working, or people working the night shift.

Or insomniacs, or people with cross-time-zone business. If someone is working at 2 a.m. every night for a week then they have a problem, but just once doesn't prove anything.


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:07 PM
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The only way I have much hope of getting an email response from one colleague is to write between the hours of 1 and 3 AM and hope that he responds within five minutes of receiving my message.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:08 PM
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If someone is working at 2 a.m. every night for a week then they have a problem

I do not!


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:09 PM
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110: Obviously, different standards apply for strippers.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:11 PM
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107: It's also a business with a lot of deadlines that get set outside your organization. My deadlines get set by courts and opposing counsel -- I can move them around some, but not always. When you get a deadline pileup, that means working late, even if you haven't yourself procrastinated yourself into a bad position.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:14 PM
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If someone is working at 2 a.m. every night for a week then they have a problem

Or little kids and deadlines.

Also: 80 comments later, no one has scolded Moby for calling a diæresis an umlaut. Standards, people!


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:14 PM
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One of the profs at my institution will (seemingly) give an intelligent and appropriately lengthy response to any email within ten minutes, no matter when it was sent. It is also said that he once, when a student, broke into his department to turn a paper in—and that the latest he ever turned anything in was a week early.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:14 PM
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All this talk of procrastination is making me think I should stop reading the internet and start my day's work. If I keep going until 2 AM, I might actually make real progress.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:15 PM
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115: Making progress at reading the Internet? Don't worry, you're almost there.


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:19 PM
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A law professor at a minor major Ivy League institution was rumored to have been the first associate in New York to bill 25 hours in a calendar day.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:19 PM
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Didn't Halford claim to have done that? (Or, rather, to have messed around with the time zones so as not to obviously have done it?)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:22 PM
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t is also said that he once, when a student, broke into his department to turn a paper in--and that the latest he ever turned anything in was a week early.

Fucker!


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:23 PM
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We all love the music of Judas Priest, LB, but their jurisprudence succumbed to the sophomore slump pretty precipitously.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:24 PM
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the latest he ever turned anything in was a week early.

I once did all the work for an entire class before the class even started, because I had a month of free time in the summer and the professor had posted all the assignments on the web. And I even TeXed them up. I'm pretty sure I was a different person then.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:27 PM
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I end up working at 2 AM from time to time so I'm not in a position to judge, but that's no reason not to. I'd just feel a little nervous thinking that my future depended on the quality of work produced by someone else at the tail end of an 18 hour work day. I, OTOH, produce perfectly excellent work while sleep deprived, stressed, and overcaffeinated.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:28 PM
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I'm pretty sure I was a different person then.

That's good. Otherwise we would have to kill you.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:28 PM
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I had one glorious quarter my first year in college when I was ahead of every deadline and got enough sleep and had time to hang out with friends. Never before, never since. I would like to recapture the brain chemistry that made that possible, please.


Posted by: Gabardine Bathyscaphe | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:33 PM
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the latest he ever turned anything in was a week early.

I once wrote a paper early due to impending other deadlines. The week I brought it to class, the professor announced that the entire assignment had changed. I submitted it anyway, with a pointed note that I was working full-time and had other class assignments, and would not be able to rewrite it. Boy, I was am an officious little jerk.

(Well, I would at least be politer in the note today. Slightly.)


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:33 PM
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I'd just feel a little nervous thinking that my future depended on the quality of work produced by someone else at the tail end of an 18 hour work day.

Don't read the NYT's annual "Are America's medical residents going to freak out from sleep deprivation and murder us all?" article.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:34 PM
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My sister (general surgery resident) claims to have worked 111 hours in the past week—this despite the supposed modern regime of a hard 80 hour weekly limit. Becoming a doctor: not worth it.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:43 PM
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127: That sort of shite is why I dismiss out of hand the AMA's claims to care about patients. If anyone ought to know the dangers associated with sleep deprivation it's doctors.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:50 PM
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Yet year after year, there is no shortage of warm bodies happy to beg for the opportunity to fling themselves into this breach (see also: law school, I suppose). People are strange.

I find med school admissions season around here, which we're in at present, to be kind of darkly amusing. So many stressed interviewees being led around campus in suits that they look far too young to be wearing. They all seem to carry around these pocket folders. What the hell is in those folders?


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:54 PM
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What the hell is in those folders?

Illegal copies of the Garth Brooks cds.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:56 PM
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IIRC, one or more of JHU's residency programs actually lost their accreditation a few years back for too many violations of the 80 hour limit. They got their act together, but I gathered their response in the meantime was, "Fuck it, we're Hopkins. People'll come here anyway."


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 12:56 PM
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Update: So I psyched myself up to go into work today and law down the law about my job description and hours. Of course I did it in the most ingratiating way imaginable.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 2:01 PM
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Any reaction?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 2:06 PM
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132: I was just doing my ordinary morning complaints. I hope I didn't start anything bad and that it all worked well.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 2:09 PM
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The way I put it is that I want to do a lot more presentations and host more meetings, so this will prevent me from doing [x and y bullshit], which was a good plan for my first semester, as it helped me make contacts, but now is the time for me to get down to the real business of doing my job, which I then defined.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 2:10 PM
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I think she took well to it, since her basic attitude toward me last semester was that it seems like AWB should be getting more done... let's assign her more bullshit tasks until... something happens.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 2:11 PM
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Re 117 or so -- Because of a change in time zones, if I'd used "what date is it in the location where I'm sitting right now" as the criteria for what constitutes a "day" there were two occasions where I could conceivably have billed more than 24 hours in a "day.". It's actually very easy to have that happen if you try to do an LA to NY business trip in one day, and can bill for travel time (most of which I spent asleep). But that's not really billing 25 hours.

I was told once by a client that, when he got our emails at 10 or 11 at night, he assumed that we either didn't know how to organize anything or that we were putting his work on such a low priority that we were willing to do it in the middle of the might after doing other stuff first. So I think there's a lot of truth in Togolosh's point.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 3:22 PM
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Right, I remember that when you spelled it out, it didn't sound implausible at all -- all night on a plane, deposition all day and working meals, and on a plane back home at the end of the day.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 3:29 PM
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Tangentially related to the late hours are dubious hours premise, I was always annoyed by people who claimed that architects weren't overworked as students, but were just lazy/poorly organized/the type of people who'd rather bullshit around socially than get their work done and get on with their lives*. My response was this:

Second year I got an assignment (I recall the project, but not the specifics of the assignment - presumably a model of some sort) at the end of class on Monday (~4:30 pm). I went to the art store for supplies, ate dinner, and then came back to work, worked til ~3 am. Next day, other classes, lunch, more studio time, dinner, all-nighter, other other classes, and worked up until the prof walked in. Sometimes, there's just that much work, and "organization" has nothing to do with it.

* that last one really chapped my hide, as you can imagine


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 4:08 PM
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138: I'm sure that some architects get paid for travel time, but boy howdy, that's not typical (ime, you bill for either travel expenses or time, but not both. Mind you, architects' hourly fees are 1/2-1/3 what lawyers get. Not that I'm complaining. Oh wait, yes I am.).


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 4:10 PM
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Yes, but architects are way down toward the bottom of the list of people to put against the wall when the revolution comes*. Which is nice.

*Unless I make the list and the architect in question had anything to do with the building I work in.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 6:02 PM
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Actually, if I'm making the list, quite a lot of architects will come toward the top. But nearly all of them are much older than you and I'm not very likely to be the one making the list.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 6:09 PM
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I was always annoyed by people who claimed that architects weren't overworked as students, but were just lazy/poorly organized/the type of people who'd rather bullshit around socially than get their work done and get on with their lives*.

The only architect stereotype I've encountered is "Architects combine the best qualitites of artists with the best qualitites of engineers. Boy, I wish I was an architect".


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 6:22 PM
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Architects combine the best qualitites earnings potential of artists with the best qualitites costly and time-consuming higher education of engineers.

Fixed that for you.


Posted by: KR | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 7:14 PM
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OT, but this thread did briefly wander into medicine so I thought I would disappoint everyone by noting that I do not seem to actually require opiates to kill my dental pain. I don't know whether to be sad or happy about this - surely it would have made my comments more interesting.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 7:54 PM
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Glad to hear the pain is better. If the teeth come out in good shape, please consider a post-procedure treat for yourself.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 8:01 PM
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You could take the opiates anyway. I don't think you value our entertainment enough, ().


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 8:02 PM
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But yes, hooray for not being in pain.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 8:03 PM
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Oh, my teeth are going to come out so ugly that there's no way I'd be able to make jewelry out of them. Sadness.

Apparently enough antibiotics plus being very vigilant about the stronger motrin means that I'm at a workable level of pain. It hurts, but it isn't crippling. And I slept last night. Woo!

And tell you what, essear - I'll comment when I'm coming off of anesthesia. (If I remember.) Though I sincerely doubt I'll be as entertaining as Btock.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 8:10 PM
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149: Not if you go to a quality tooth-jewelery professional. They'll polish the tooth and pick a setting that will hide flaws and accentuate the positive characteristics tooth. For example, if you smoke or drink coffee, you'll probably want a yellow gold setting. If the tooth has caries, they cover that with the metal or with a small gemstone.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 9:15 PM
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And tell you what, essear - I'll comment when I'm coming off of anesthesia. (If I remember.)

From what I recall of coming off of anesthesia after wisdom tooth surgery -- or rather, what I don't recall but have been told -- it is unlikely that you will remember to comment, but likely that the result would be entertaining if you did.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 9:52 PM
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Borrow someone's smartphone and tape it to your hand so that you remember to and are able to comment right after you wake up.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 10:01 PM
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152: I'll try that. Or I'll tell the friend that is picking me up to remind me....

I'm groaning over how much all of this is going to cost. I really don't understand separating dental insurance from medical insurance - this is a medical necessity, even if it deals with teeth. But no, it's only covered under my dental, and benefits are capped at $750. $750! (This is nothing in the world of root canals and extractions! God, don't even mention something like a crown - that's not even covered under my plan.)

I've really never seen a good explanation for why dental and vision are separate policies when they are just as central to health. Now, that's something I wish Obama-care would change. (Does it? That would be awesome, thanks.)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 10:11 PM
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Now, that's something I wish Obama-care would change. (Does it? That would be awesome, thanks.)

Not that I ever heard, but I could have missed it.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 10:38 PM
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I have, when working all night as a grad student writing a paper - on which no one's life or livelihood depended - waited until after 6 to send e-mail to my advisor so it would look like I was up early. As I expected, he responded in a few minutes; whenever I e-mailed him in the evening or at night (but not late night), he'd always respond around 6 the next morning. It must have been his routine.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 10:41 PM
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I avoid emailing my students in the middle of the night - I do NOT want them to think that I might respond to them when they email me at 2 am the night before an exam. I'll draft the message and then send it when I wake up.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 10:45 PM
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I've also done draft and wait. I've found you sometimes have to change something minor from the draft stage or else the e-mail application might keep the middle-of-the-night timestamp. That might have been just eudora. I've been on webmail exclusively for years now.

Someone's advisor in my old grad program told an advisee to get some more sleep based on repeated middle of the night timestamps.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 10:51 PM
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I'm up right now "working" on a presentation for a 7 AM (EST) meeting that I need to e-mail to the organizer. Will probably send it now out of paranoia that something will be broken if I wait until just before the meeting, but I'm not really fond of the "optics".


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 10:59 PM
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Speaking of presentations, I finally opened powerpoint a few minutes ago for my presentation tomorrow. I think there's a good chance I'll be not using any visual aids, although the presentation is in the afternoon, so I have time to work on it. Plus, no one has to get any e-mails.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:04 PM
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159: You could use the Gettysburg one, but then give your talk as planned. It would be, like, art, man.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:17 PM
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That's great.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 02- 3-10 11:20 PM
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Am I the only one who thinks some of Tufte's excerpts on his website amount to just saying "powerpoint sux"?


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 12:55 AM
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Architects! Not so long ago I had the opportunity to attend London Metropolitan University's graduate show. It was crammed with fascinating, tall models...and some of the projects weren't bad either.

(Later, some of them tried to build a giant pyramid of beer glasses in the pub across the road. Structural failure ensued. This is why they have engineers.)


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 2:27 AM
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||

This cartoon serves as an adequate summary of all Internet arguments I have read up to now.

|>


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 2:33 AM
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Your face summarizes all internet arguments.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 3:46 AM
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163.2: Also, why they have bouncers.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 6:36 AM
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I've really never seen a good explanation for why dental and vision are separate policies when they are just as central to health.

Ignoring, for a moment, the category error of looking for a rational explanation for *any* aspect of health care provision/financing in the U.S., there is a good explanation for why vision care is a separate benefit ("good" in the sense of "explains everything", not "makes sense from the point of view of patient care").

The largest vision care plan in the U.S. is part of a vertically integrated enterprise that controls the entire value chain of eyewear, from manufacturing to retailing. When you sign up for a vision care plan (and these are generally subdidized only minimally, if at all, by the employer), you are in effect just signing up to purchase a pair of glasses from Luxottica on the installment plan.

This has been another edition of "KR shatters one of your few remaining illusions."


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 9:47 AM
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You've shattered that illusion before. Every time I walk by an eye-glass place, I think about your previous comments about Luxottica.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 9:52 AM
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I have? I'm becoming the boring uncle who endlessly repeats the same stories?


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 9:57 AM
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I wait until just before the meeting

Flash drive. Every single other presenter will do this. Find the AV tech behind the scenes in the coffe break/lunch interval.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 10:03 AM
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I didn't remember the previous comment (still don't, in fact). It's ok for now.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 10:03 AM
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169: Yes, yes you have. Or possibly I have the gift of Sight when it comes to your blog comments.

171: It's because you have those crappy Luxottica eye glasses, so you couldn't see it.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 10:05 AM
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169: Emerson hasn't been here in a long time. Somebody had to take his place.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 10:09 AM
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Walt has a good memory. Today's version omitted some of the interesting details.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 10:10 AM
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I didn't know all of that about vision insurance, but I never took it. It was a simple matter to figure out that it wasn't saving me any money unless I replace my glasses yearly.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 10:24 AM
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Interesting. I'm pleased to see that I've avoided the Luxotticapus altogether - my optometrist is a local guy (fellow alum, in fact - I didn't even know CMU made dentists), my eyeglasses are from a megacorp, but not that one, and my vision coverage is, apparently, still being covered by the City if Pittsburgh*, which AB left over 3 years ago. Woo-hoo!

* this is a complete mystery, btw. Somewhere along the line I had vision benefits through Pitt, where AB teaches and gets benefits (not nec. in that order), but last time I went to the eye doctor I wasn't covered, so the office manager ran my old, City-based coverage, and voila! Free eye exam.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 10:27 AM
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Goffman has a lot on speech being more like a jukebox than one might like to think, in Forms of Talk. He doesn't specifically address how this might become more obvious in the elderly; I haven't looked to see whether he writes about aging as a special case. Probably just one more form of stigma as far as he is concerned.

I learned only recently that his wife commited suicide, which fact changes the way I read a lot of what he writes.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 10:28 AM
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Also, yay to 143, boo to 144.

141.*: if you tell me the building, I'm more than happy to name names.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 10:28 AM
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178: That's why the architects will need to be shot come the revolution: no sense of trade solidarity.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 11:02 AM
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167: Figures. Just my luck to be as blind as a bat with teeth as soft as marshmallows. Though, I'm bucking the Luxottica trend, unless they also manufacture gas permeable lenses - I haven't bought new glasses since 2002.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 11:06 AM
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gas permeable lenses

Are those the hard lenses that they still make for those of us who cannot wear the good kind? I lasted about 10 years before they just got too uncomfortable to wear.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 11:10 AM
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That happened for me with contacts generally right around when Newt was born. I wore contacts continuously from when I was twelve to when I was thirty, and can't handle them for more than a couple of hours now (which means I don't wear them at all).

It's really annoying from a vanity point of view -- glasses change my face a lot, and not for the better.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 11:15 AM
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Gas permeable lenses are the good kind. I can't wear them anymore, but when they were comfortable, they were better than the soft lenses I now wear in many ways.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 1:06 PM
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181 - 183: I think it really depends on what sort of eye problems you have and how your eyes hold up to them. I don't find mine to be particularly uncomfortable, unless something gets trapped underneath, in which case it is excruciating, want to claw my eyes out pain.

I have severe astigmatism, which means I can't wear soft lenses and my glasses simply cannot correct as well as contacts. I really hope that what happened to you all doesn't happen to me - the difference between glasses and contacts is huge for me. It's been 16 years, so far....just need to hold out for another 50! (Or until I can afford Lasik - which is probably 50 years away, too.)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 2:02 PM
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I think wistfully about Lasik -- I made a feint at it about ten years ago, and got as far as the initial eye exam, but was put off by fear of a bad outcome.

(What actually put me off is that the very respectable and well recommended practice I went to claimed that in in thousands of patients, they had never had a bad outcome. Given that I'd heard several anecdotes of problem results after Lasik, this seemed really implausible to me, and suggested that their definition of 'not a bad outcome' included a lot of stuff that I'd find unpleasant, but that they weren't going to give me statistics on.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 2:10 PM
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My mom had it done a few years ago. She is mostly happy with the results, but there were a lot of side effects that they did not properly warn her about that were rather distressing (dry eyes, how fast her eyes started changing in the opposite direction, etc).

I hope that by the time I can afford it, the technology will have improved. I imagine that there is already a huge difference between what you could get done 10 years ago and today.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 2:14 PM
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better than the soft lenses I now wear in many ways

You wear them like this?


Posted by: KR | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 2:16 PM
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I really hope that what happened to you all doesn't happen to me - the difference between glasses and contacts is huge for me.

In my case, I did not try anything to see if I couldn't make the contacts more workable. And I mostly had problems at the end of a long day at the computer. I've always assumed I could go back to contacts for at least part of the day without any problem.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 2:18 PM
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but there were a lot of side effects that they did not properly warn her about that were rather distressing (dry eyes, how fast her eyes started changing in the opposite direction, etc).

Yeah, exactly. I figure I've mostly aged out of Lasik by now -- the myopia's fixable, but I'm not all that many years from needing either bifocals, or if the myopia's gone reading glasses. At which point what's the point.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 2:18 PM
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Eh, my mom did it at 56 or so and there was a definite improvement to the quality of life - I wouldn't say you've aged out entirely just yet! When doing needlepoint she has to wear cheapo reading glasses (the ones you get at the drug store for $3.99) with one lens popped out, so you do risk being made fun of by your family, but other than that it seems like on the balance it was a good decision.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 2:24 PM
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Kids these days and their Lasik surgery. What ever happened to good old-fashioned radial keratotomy?


Posted by: KR | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 2:28 PM
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191: I always thought they were the same thing!


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 2:33 PM
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But who knows? Sometimes dogs do eat homework.

My dog ate part of my passport. My next passport said "This is a replacement for a mutilated passport."

I want to be good enough at something so that I can be idiosyncratic.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 4:37 PM
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128: The sleep specialists do care. The other doctors think that sleep is for other people, not for high performers.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 5:56 PM
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Parenthetical, you have dental. It only came in 8 or 9 years ago.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 6:01 PM
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This fast-acting articaine with a half life of 20 minutes was weird for me. I got my shots at noon. It was only really starting to wear off around 4:45. That is, I could feel my tongue then, but my cheek didn't start to feel anything until 6:30.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 6:03 PM
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I remember an eye doctor in the Eugene area: Dr. I. Howard Fine.

Which I thought was great.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 6:03 PM
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167: I thought it was all eyemed which owns LensCrafters. It's really just pretax healthcare, because it covers expenses that you don't really need to insure against--unlike certain dental things.

And the dental is such a mess, because if you have some sort of trauma or injury which does damage to your teeth, that is covered by medical insurance.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 6:06 PM
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Ohh. Should have read the links.

I have an eyemed plan. I use it to buy my contact lenses. And you can get $60 for an eye exam. A good one around here costs $150 or more.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 6:08 PM
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My BF's company used to package vision with the regular health insurance, so there was no adverse selection issue.

There's a web site for an online optician which goes through the fact that even though they're out of Eyemed's network, their prices are cheaper, so you'll still pay less.

New England Eye takes Eyemed, but don't go there if you want the correct prescription or value your eyes in any way.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 6:12 PM
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I have severe astigmatism, which means I can't wear soft lenses and my glasses simply cannot correct as well as contacts. I really hope that what happened to you all doesn't happen to me - the difference between glasses and contacts is huge for me.

Don't know whether this applies to you, but they make soft toric lenses--in those fancy new silicone hydrogels too. Cooper Vision's Biofinity has a Toric (the lens my doctor first recommended), and I wear Ciba Vision Air Optix for Astigmatism.

Silicone Hydrogels are supposed to let in a lot more oxygen, though they probably don't let in as much oxygen as rigid lenses do.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 6:16 PM
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The artificial tear drop makers see Lasik creating a huge market for their product.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 6:18 PM
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Now, I will stop commenting on a dead thread.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 6:20 PM
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When I was looking into Lasik, they gave me a bunch of results of clinical trials. After going through them, there was no way in hell I was going to have surgery. Partly, that was because my eyes wouldn't qualify for the normal surgery since my pupils are too large*, so I could only consider newer and less tried technologies.

None of the studies I saw defined "long term" as any longer than a few years, which made me think that it's going to be the people who have actually had the surgery in non-trial contexts who are going to learn about that first. The reassurance that they've been doing eye surgery "for years" in other countries was not actually reassuring.

To his credit, the doctor whose office gave me all the info, also recommended against me getting any surgery before I even had a chance to say I didn't want it. His view was that if I were in my 50s or 60s it might be a good idea, but for now it was best to wait.

At the time, I was going through a long period (10-15 optometrist visits over about 5 months) of trying various kinds of lenses because my eyes could no longer handle the ones I'd been wearing for 14 years and glasses were just not good enough. I still don't like the soft lenses, but the ones I have are ok now.

*Ladeez.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 6:29 PM
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I have severe astigmatism in one eye and moderate astigmatism in the other, and for a long time I could only wear gas permeables, but I've been wearing SofLens Toric for like ten years now and they work great. A couple of weeks ago my doctor prescribed me hydrogel lenses for astigmatics, whose brand name I now forget. The thing is that sometimes your lens rotates on your eye so you go blurry a second, and then you blink and everything goes back into focus. This is kind of annoying. But I really hated gas perms.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 6:34 PM
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They should more widely market goggles for severely myopic people. The problem with glasses is that my eyes are so bad that my lenses are like a big cube of plastic with a deeply concave hollow in the middle, and a sweet spot that is approximately this big: o. So unless my glasses are perfectly centered on my face, I can't see for shit, but since they're so clunky and heavy they slip all the time. What I need is a way to strap them in place and hold them right up against my eyes.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 6:39 PM
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I have a minor astigmatism that better stay minor or I don't know what I'll do. At -10.5/-11, glasses just don't cut it. With the gas permeable lenses, the blinking was never an issue, I saw better at night, and I could buy lenses only once every year or two (once my prescription stabilized).

The first types of soft lenses I tried, the moving lens issue was so bad that it would be like suddenly taking my lenses out and putting them back in. Blinking sometimes helped, sometimes not. The worst was when I'd be meeting with a professor - I was studying for my oral exams - and as I'd answer a question the lens would slowly move until I couldn't see him anymore. I couldn't very well stop speaking and start blinking in the hopes that the lens would come back in place, so I'd keep looking at the same direction and then try to blink more naturally while he came up with the next question.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 6:41 PM
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I realize that there are now improved ways to fix vision, and I suppose I could explore my options. But I went to kindergarten in clunky, black plastic frames with very heavy, thick glass lenses because there was no other option. As long as I can have the new light lenses and some choice of frames, it is enough of an improvement that I'm happy.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 7:43 PM
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Parenthetical, you have dental. It only came in 8 or 9 years ago.

Trust me, I know I have dental insurance. The problem is that it has an incredibly low yearly maximum benefit, so I'm already way over it and need other work done this calendar year.

SofLens Toric

I do not know about these! Are they more expensive than gas permeable? I'm guessing if so my eye doctor probably didn't even bother to tell me about them (she seems incredibly good otherwise) as she knows I don't have very good vision coverage or much money.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 11:39 PM
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My dental insurance is fond of sending me hilariously Nabokovian letters. "Benefit partially denied. Amount owed by patient: $11.43." Fuckers.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 11:42 PM
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210: me. I should get my computer fixed so I don't have to coöpt the roommate's.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 11:45 PM
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I just got a new brand of contacts over the winter break that are supposed to be better for moisture and comfort. I haven't really noticed a huge difference - they're better, but not by that much and are so hard to take out sometimes that I wonder if it's worth it. Anyway, I just looked at the box to see the name - Acuvue Oasys - and realized that the labels are half-English, half-Chinese. I guess that's what happens when you go to an outlet of a giant Chinese/Taiwanese chain in San Gabriel based on relatives' recommendations.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 02- 4-10 11:46 PM
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