Re: Le Freak, C'est Chic

1

I say we cut out the middleman and make E.Messily a front page poster.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 3:27 PM
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And drain the life out of her? Better to become E. Messily commenters.


Posted by: Standpipe Bridgeplate | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 3:35 PM
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What makes this different than Twin Falls, Idaho?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 3:35 PM
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2: Typical tenured faculty behavior: pull up the ladder, create new and innovative ways to deflect the rising stars away from membership in the privileged caste.


Posted by: KR | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 3:39 PM
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I enjoyed that link about the last Fat Man.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 3:41 PM
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I met someone a few months ago who does burlesque. I had to ask them what they meant, since I thought "Isn't that like an antique term for stripping? They can't mean that." It strikes me as an odd hobby.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 3:46 PM
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EM can have my spot if she likes. That's not the point. And now I must swim.


Posted by: Standpipe Bridgeplate | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 3:54 PM
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Strong recommend: Half-Life by Shelley Jackson, a story told by one half of a conjoined twin in a world where conjoined twins are a fairly ordinary minority.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 3:55 PM
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3 - It's not going to feature a rousing performance of "Jackson".

In tangentially related news, I saw a picture of Alex Sink, the Democratic candidate for Governor in Florida. She looked not-entirely-Northern-European, and I was a little curious about her ethnic background. Turns out she's descended from one of Chang and Eng, although this article bizarrely doesn't indicate which one:

http://www.sptimes.com/2006/06/11/State/Twins__great_granddau.shtml


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 4:00 PM
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There are a number of running burlesque shows. The best known in L.A. is Velvet Hammer, which also has a lucha libre spinoff called Lucha Va-Voom. Titillation plus fancy garnishes like humor, production values, acrobatics, women of all shapes and sizes, and ironic self-conscious referentiality.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 4:01 PM
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Bawlmer loves its burlesque, sure does; people offer classes in it from time to time. Since I'm a humorless pedant, I don't get it.

Didn't someone declare the death of irony recently? Curious!


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 4:18 PM
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No, that was auto-tune.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 4:38 PM
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I have some friends who are very into burlesque dancing. I saw the Toledo show almost every weekend when I lived in LA, cause of being on the band's list and knowing the bartender. There are arguments to be made about reclaiming or owning stereotypes etc which I am at least sort of sympathetic to. I think I would be (am?) sympathetic to the idea of actual conjoined twins doing some sort of freak-show inspired art. Nonconjoined nontwins making art about freak shows feels like a different kettle of fish to me.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 4:56 PM
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There was a tlc documentary on these guys that was pretty fascinating:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abigail_and_Brittany_Hensel

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BkKWApOAG2g


Posted by: Lemmy Caution | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 4:58 PM
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Reader Poll: Has the Discover Health Channel taken the place of the freak shows of yore?

I say yes. Who has a rebuttal?

(I know TLC is not the Discovery Health Channel. But it reminded me of it.)


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 5:07 PM
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+y


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 5:08 PM
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It depends. What network airs The Biggest Loser?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 5:11 PM
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America has become nothing but a freakshow


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 5:14 PM
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This is a great DD song:

i've been driving around town
with my head spinning around
everywhere i look i see
your '96 jeep cherokee

you're a bully and a clown
you made me cry and put me down
after all that ive been through
you'd think i'd hate the sight of you

but with every jeep i see
my broken heart still skips a beat
i guess its just my stupid luck
that all of boston drives that same black fucking truck

it could be him or am i tripping
and i'm crashing into everything
and thinking about skipping town a while
until these cars go out of style...

i try to see it in reverse
it makes the situation hundreds of times worse
when i wonder if it makes you want to cry
every time you see a light blue volvo driving by

so dont tell me that you're off to see the world
i know you wont get very far
dont call me if you get another girl baby
just call me if you get another car


Posted by: bjk | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 5:17 PM
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Because of my job, I have had occasion to meet not only burlesque performers, but modern vaudevillians, geeks, fire-eaters, and some disabled self-described freaks who run a show. It's a pretty diverse world of performance and lifestyle. And I'm not sure I can sign on to it 100%, politically. I have lots of friends who are close to
these folx
, and am assured that they have a solid analysis. But still.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 5:44 PM
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For a while in Boston it seemed like every show had some burlesque in there. Fine, you know, but not always so creative. One innovator promoter replaced the burlesque segments with lesbian drag standup and underground baton twirling. More satisfying!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 5:51 PM
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Underground baton twirling?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 5:57 PM
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underground baton twirling

This is where the performer is situated beneath a trapdoor in the floor of the stage and throws the baton upwards, above-stage. No performer in sight: just twirling baton!


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 5:58 PM
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The baton twirling underground is pretty hardcore. Don't think that they won't rip that sequinned majorette hat right off your head, bitch.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 6:01 PM
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neb's got the idea.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 6:02 PM
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Look out!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 6:03 PM
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19 is the awesomest lyric ever. Or at least the awesomest in this thread. In any event, I am finding it awesome.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 6:06 PM
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27: Dresden Dolls.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 6:10 PM
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28 was supposed to be a question. But now I've googled and see that it is.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 6:14 PM
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28, 29: I am grateful for the question and answer, in any event.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 6:19 PM
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In DS's footsteps, I will note that in the old unfogged this topic would have led to tons of off colour, nasty, but often amusing comments, a several hundred comment all around flamewar, or most likely both. For the present day unfogged, I propose the following SWPL vicious argument bait: Anti gentrification activists who devote much of their energies to blocking new, expensive, residential development in gentrified or already very rapidly gentrifying neighbourhoods are either idiots or cynical propagandists aiming to make sure that ever more new neighbourhoods get depopulated of their poorer, mostly blue collar population. Discuss.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 6:31 PM
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From the link in 31:

"It's just inexorable, this authenticity in the visual language of sameness," she said.

I find it hard to imagine that an actual person uttered that sentence jumble of words.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 6:45 PM
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Another good one . . .


and sappy songs about sex and cheating
bland accounts of two lovers meeting
make me want to give mankind a beating


Posted by: bjk | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 7:15 PM
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Didn't someone declare the death of irony recently?

Um, about nine years ago. Irony died a fiery death on September 11th and then, miraculously, it rose on the third day!

I know people who do burlesque. They're very cool, and I like them a lot, but the whole "burlesque" scene has always struck me as a little, uh, nerdy. It's like a naked Renn Faire. (YMMV.)

On the topic of Evelyn Evelyn: of course, the artists should have made it clear that the conjoined twins were actually real dolls.


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 7:27 PM
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I'm not into burlesque. I have friends who are, and really seem to enjoy it, but the main difference seems to be that the performers smile while they're dancing instead of scowling and looking put-upon.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 7:29 PM
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36

The girl in 26 is not a very good baton twirler. (PS Did you know I used to twirl? I did!)


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 7:32 PM
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It's like a naked Renn Faire.

TITTIES! HUZZAH!


Posted by: OPINIONATED RENN FAIRE NERD | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 7:35 PM
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It's like a naked Renn Faire. (YMMV.)

Suddenly I realize why I can't stand burlesque! Thank you, Populuxe!


Posted by: winna | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 8:42 PM
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naked Renn Faire

For many people at my alma mater, where they have an annual (and mostly non-SCA-type) RF, this is redundant.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 9:10 PM
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36: it's different underground.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 10:00 PM
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But the lady in the gentrification thing is basically right & yeah she speaks like an academic thinker about what it means for places to be authentic/samey etc, but so?


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 02-19-10 10:43 PM
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36: it's different underground.

Specifically, the baton-twirler is evaluated on her looks rather than her twirling.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:08 AM
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43

Oh my god, I hate Adam Gopnik so much.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:55 AM
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44

41 When I was saying she's an idiot I was referring to her opposition to new residential construction as a supposed cause of gentrification, when it really is both a result of a well advanced process of gentrification and an inhibitor of its the spread to other neighbourhoods. Gentrification is basically the creation of new upper middle class housing, and is the result of the number of upper middle class people who want to live in a city growing faster than the amount of housing in existing UMC neighbourhoods. New construction satisfies the same economic demand. It is true that the initial wave of gentrifiers is mostly made of sociologically UMC's but economically not so much who are priced out of older UMC neighbourhoods by the conversion of the crappier units there into straight up higher income units. They're young and childless, so they need less space per adult than much of the blue collar population of the area they're moving into, can spend a greater share of their income on housing, and will often pool resources with strangers in the form of apartment shares. Then comes the second wave as the poorer economically UMC types get priced out of their neighbourhoods and move into places that have the amenities that they want, courtesy of the first wave. These types are also potential customers for new construction, and the more there is of it, the more slowly the geographical spread of the process of displacement occurs.

But she's also annoying on her other point. When she fetishises areas like the Village of thirty years ago, or Williamsburg of the mid to late nineties, what she's really saying is that she happens to like places in mid gentrification, but it's a type of neighbourhood that can only exist for an extended period of time in a city with a perfectly balanced supply and demand of housing for the UMC, sociological and economic, but which was unbalanced not to long ago, whether through downward or upward shifts in the class make up i.e. frozen after economic forces created mixed neighbourhoods, but before they managed to destroy them. I happen to like those kind of places too, but it takes a special form of oblivious class privilege to celebrate the results of partial class displacement and demand that it be frozen at just the right point to satisfy her aesthetic tastes, bemoaning its continuation in the name of a pseudo concern for the working class. When you add to that a support for urban planning policies that accelerate the spread of the displacement of the working class, the total picture is just ugly.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 6:19 AM
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45

I concur with 44 in all of its particulars, but for the sake if thoroughness, I note the omission of the critical role of gays as the shock troops of gentrification.

As a disproportionately childless demographic, they can overlook deficits in public education in neighborhoods where the aesthetic properties of the housing stock exceed the quality of public schools. Also, their consumer behavior (stereotyping here, but accurate enough to be economically meaningful) supports the type of shopping and amenities that appeals to the same UMC tastes that make gentrification self-sustaining.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 7:13 AM
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As a disproportionately childless demographic, they can overlook deficits in public education in neighborhoods where the aesthetic properties of the housing stock exceed the quality of public schools.

Well, and they're ill-served by child-focused suburban communities that often enough skew conservative and don't particularly want them anyhow.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 7:29 AM
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One can very easily imagine places that are both in some senses gentrified and yet not inexorably on the path to purely UMC-dom. (Robert Hughes talks about artists' lofts, for example)

And the idea of mixed housing isn't an aesthetic choice; it's a moral imperative. If you are rich, you ought have to live near those who aren't.

Housing isn't the result of market forces just; it is the result of policy choices. I think a good policy is one that results in mixed neighbourhoods.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 7:31 AM
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44 is describing, of course, imperialist nostalgia, as described by Reynardo Rosaldo in Culture and Truth: ""the peculiarity of their yearning, of course, is that agents of colonialism long for the very forms of life they intentionally altered or destroyed. Therefore, my concern resides with a particular kind of nostalgia, often found under imperialism, where people mourn the passing of what they themselves have transformed."

Vis-a-vis burlesque, everyone keeps telling me that there is all this awesome radical burlesque out there, with women of various ages and conditions involved. But whenever I've gone, all I've seen are thin, conventionally pretty white girls getting even more props for being so "in touch with their sexuality" in front of an audience of annoying hipsters, annoying punks and various women who think it's transgressive to be bisexual. I have never seen a fat burlesque performer; I have never seen an old one. The one video performance I've seen by a fat woman felt really tokenistic to me, like everyone was all "you go, you're so awesome to be naked even though you're all fat and most of us would never ever sleep with you, but it's nice that you have, you know, self confidence". Also, the burlesque performance I saw at the otherwise awesome radical theater referenced by Natilo--well, that was the one where the one male performance was played totally for laughs.

Mostly, I think, as porn has become more respectable, the popular and fashionable girls see it as one more way to cement their fashionable popularity. I freely admit, I am kind of jealous of women who are beautiful and body-confident and can leverage those things into even more friends and fame. It's not a feeling I'm proud of having; I would like not to care. I would find it easier not to care if radical and radical-fellow-traveller communities weren't always talking about how revolutionary it is for pretty women to get praised for being pretty.


Posted by: Frowner | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 7:32 AM
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And of course the only way to meaningfully mitigate gentrification (as opposed to couching your NIMBYism in an alleged concern for poor residents) is to support both new affordable housing development and the rehab of existing affordable housing stock, which early-gentrifier anti-gentrification activists are often loath to do because it doesn't fit in with the character of the neighborhood.

You want to see [X neighborhood that used to be so diverse] keep some poor people in it? Advocate for subsidized housing. You want to help those poor people's lives? Fine. Advocate for the building of more (non-WF chain) supermarkets in [X neighborhood that used to be so funky and fun].


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 7:33 AM
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One can very easily imagine places that are both in some senses gentrified and yet not inexorably on the path to purely UMC-dom. (Robert Hughes talks about artists' lofts, for example)

Every neighborhood I've ever known which contained "artists' lofts" inevitable eventually contained yuppie lofts. I mean, I suppose I can imagine a neighborhood where that didn't happen, but I certainly can't think of one.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 7:34 AM
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Artists are the shock troops. Followed by merchants pandering to visitors who come to see art but stay to shop for tableware.


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 7:35 AM
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Obligatory Onion link.


Posted by: KR | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 7:36 AM
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Er Sifu, just today I voted to make that part of the NZLP's next election manifesto. Pro-mixed suburbs people: not always idiots.

(& Somehow I doubt people like Owen Hatherley are really just after in-keepingness.)

(as for artists' lofts: really? there are a great deal of neighbourhoods that have had small artists' colonies but then never really took off --- I'm thinking Armagh Street in chch here, but as a rule this is where biased sample issues come into play.)


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 7:38 AM
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51: Tomato, tomahto.


Posted by: KR | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 7:38 AM
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I end up thinking that blaming the artists (or even the yuppies) for moving to the (horrible, Dwell-ized) neighborhoods that they enjoy is the wrong approach to the problem. Give people who live in a place the money and political clout to stay in a place, and the problem of gentrification is solved. Alternatively, since it's probably desirable that neighborhoods change over time (an influx of money allows rebuilding, new immigrants have to go somewhere, etc etc) addressing the various structural inequalities of redlining, food deserts, precarity and so on will give the poor and vulnerable more options to go to other places which suit them.

In fact, I propose a refinement on imperialist nostalgia--some kind of segregation nostalgia, or xenophobia nostalgia, a longing for the city when it was shaped even more openly and intensely by racism and fear of immigrants, so that there were wonderful "authentic" neighborhoods everywhere you turned. I don't know what a truly egalitarian city would look like, but I doubt that it would provide an endless string of charming little neighborhoods for the better-off to discover and move into.

I feel bitey this morning.


Posted by: Frowner | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 7:43 AM
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Frowner, I think you are overly bitey here. Blaming hipsters for liking to live in non-monocultural places is a bit daft. The issue is that urban policy results in monocultural suburbs except in transitional moments.

The solution is to maintain the `transitional' moment, not to insist that the moment is really just a way to get to a monoculture.

And why shouldn't an egalitarian city consist of charming little neighbourhoods? It isn't like charm is a property of inequality.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 7:51 AM
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Me too. Anarchism sucks. The only place an authentic experience can be had in the parking lot of a mall.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 7:52 AM
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I sort-of don't get the point of burlesque, of what they're trying to acheive. The burlesque troupe the person I met was in did have that whole "women of all shapes and sizes" angle, and one of the four women in it was fat, but I have trouble believing that the main problem with stripping is that there are no fat strippers.

Imagine that ten years from now, a Las Vegas completely revives the old-style burlesque. (I haven't been in Vegas in a while, so maybe this has already happened.) From the point of view of people who do burlesque, is that a success?


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 7:57 AM
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both new affordable housing development and the rehab of existing affordable housing stock, which early-gentrifier anti-gentrification activists are often loath to do because it doesn't fit in with the character of the neighborhood.

I don't understand this at all. Maybe it's because my perspective is so completely Pittsburgh (which doesn't have a growing UMC population, and so doesn't face strong gentrification pressures), but:

Step 1: Typical run-down, working class neighb with "good bones"
Step 2: Gays move in, followed by some cafes/vintage stores/decent restaurants, and hipsters
Step 3: Demand rises, housing not-so-cheap. Oh noes!

Now here's where people are (rightly) advocating for the construction of new, affordable housing. What I'm not getting in Sifu's comment is why that housing in any way would/could/should conflict with the existing stock. Either the existing stock is rowhouse/narrow frame house stuff, in which case that's exactly what new affordable housing looks like anyway*, or the existing stock is larger, fancier stuff (that fell on hard times and was subdivided into cheap apartments - iow, my neighb), in which case you just build duplexes that look like big, fancy houses, but are actually paired affordable units. Unless you think "affordable housing" == "projects", there is absolutely no conflict between affordable housing and context-sensitive housing.

* or, if the neighborhood has existing apartment buildings, then you can build new apartment buildings with affordable units - easy-peasy


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 7:58 AM
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59: Don't forget the architects, JRoth! No, seriously, the town of Asbury Park, NJ is a town of ridiculously gingerbreaded Victorian houses around clusters of tiny lakes and on the ocean. Gays and artists found it simultaneously (that Venn diagram, it overlaps!?), but a friend of mine from high school, now an architect, moved his office there very early on, and now there are newspaper stories about his "vision" being behind the rebirth of the city. (The city and its housing stock are much more beautiful these days, and in the summer particularly, all the groovy restaurants and bars have lines out the door, which is weird, and while the new tax base is presumably helpful to the city's poorer residents, it sure doesn't seem to me that the new stuff there is helping them directly. The retail is basically pure Christopher St., but there's always been a grocery store there, I guess, as well as scads of smaller "ethnic" markets.)


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 8:06 AM
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Further to 59, There have been (basically) 5 Pittsburgh neighborhoods that have gentrified to a significant extent in the past ~30 years (South Side, Mexican War Streets, Friendship, East Liberty, Lawrenceville, the last 2 of which are ongoing). Only 1 of them has seen gentrification in the negative sense, with all lower-income people driven out*. In all the rest, new housing, at the high and low ends, has been built to take on demand, and lower-income and legacy residents have persisted. Now a lot of this is thanks to Pittsburgh's demographics (aging, net decline, but modest, gradual increase in UMC cohort), but it's also due to neighborhood-driven redevelopment that prioritizes protecting long-time residents and maintaining the urban fabric. So you see a lot of infill housing, scattered-site rehabs, and support for subsidized housing.

Everything I talk about in 59 is SOP around here. Obviously there's displacement in gentrification, but it doesn't need to be wrenching, or wholesale.

* the exception is the Mexican War Streets, which constitiute a small, tightly-defined historic district surrounded by one of the city's worst neighborhoods. An observant visitor could map out the precise boundaries of the district based on gorgeous houses that have and have not been rehabbed. The residents also include some of the biggest assholes in the city, but I think that's coincidental.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 8:09 AM
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FWIW, lots of European cities, as far as I can tell, seem to contain fairly socially and economically mixed neighbourhoods whose mix seems fairly static. Certainly lots of Glasgow is like that. Large chunks of the city seems to get along quite well with a mix of students, older people, UMC types, and so on. There are, of course, very upscale neighbourhoods, and, on the edges, large and bleak housing estates that are inhabited only by the poor. But significant sections of the city aren't polarised like that, and I don't expect that's especially unusual.

I've always imagined some of the less sprawling US cities would be similar? But perhaps I'm wrong. I've always assumed that something like that follows from tennement type architecture and the absence of a car culture.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 8:14 AM
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60: Oh, Friendship, which starts 1 block form my house, consists of 15-18 city blocks (it's kind of a pocket neighborhood) populated by at least 50 architects (someone did a count a few years back). An older classmate of mine was one of the pioneers, buying a huge house, complete with carriage house, when the neighborhood was probably 85% multifamily (in big old houses). Word got out, and the place flipped in about 5 years. There's still tons of renters and poorly-maintained houses, but even 10 years ago AB & I couldn't afford to buy in the neighborhood - everything's been either fixed up or the owners are looking for a big payday.

One interesting thing, btw, is how the boundaries are bleeding. That's typical for hot neighborhoods, of course, but Pittsburgh is pretty strict about defining its 90 neighbs, and F'ship is bounded on 3 sides by major streets. But the housing stock blends on the 4th side (I can never even remember which street is the boundary, and I'm a planning/mapping geek), and our house, which is across one of the major streets, fits that neighb as well. But the market knows the truth - houses on my block cost half what they do on the other side of the boundary.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 8:18 AM
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Every neighborhood I've ever known which contained "artists' lofts" inevitable eventually contained yuppie lofts. I mean, I suppose I can imagine a neighborhood where that didn't happen, but I certainly can't think of one.

We have artists' lofts around the corner from us - been there 10 years. Still mostly artists. Same deal with one in Lawrenceville. But again, a lot of this has to do with population growth - if Pittsburgh were gaining 1000 yuppies/year, I'm sure gentrification would be growing more insidiously.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 8:26 AM
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49 She specifically references the Atlantic Yards project which would include forty percent subsidized housing. There are serious issues with whether the low income housing provisions are properly contractually guaranteed, which the opponents of the project have brought up. However, they have also made crystal clear that tightening up that contract would make no difference to their opposition, while reducing the number of new units by two thirds or more, even if that meant far fewer or no subsidized units, would be fine. It's this sort of shit that makes me wonder if some of these folks are just cynically aiming to speed up the gentrification of bordering neighbourhoods to cement the UMC character of their new homes. I mean they can't all be this stupid, right?

Favorite conversation on the subject a year and a half ago, a very left wing historian (tenured) and lawyer couple organizing for the Obama campaign, expressing shock that I don't oppose the AY. First saying that it will cause gentrification. Look around, think of what this area looks like now, and what it looked like five years ago, ten years ago, if that is you ever came here ten years ago. Three years ago you started seeing market rate residential development in this area for the first time in decades. This only occurred once the area was well on its way to full gentrification. Now go look in a mirror and see what the causes of gentrification and developer interest are. Then they flipped around and said, but think of the housing crisis and the price drops, it would have been even worse with thousands more units. Ummh, yes, that's the whole fucking point. But it will change the character of the area, more people, and rather than the quaint nineteenth century Mcmansion housing being ringed by abandoned characterful industrial buildings or ones turned into expensive, fashionable lofts, it will be ringed by high rise apartments. Filled with folks living in them rather than transforming another area into a copy of this one with ever more working poor people pushed out of sight and out of mind in exurban subdivisions or, in the case of the even poorer ones, crowded into ever less living space in crumbling apartments in areas where gentrification hasn't yet reached.

53 Not the case in NYC. Semi gentrified neighbourhoods have, at least so far, always been on the path to full gentrification. And I'm supportive of mixed income neighbourhoods, but you do this by creating low income, subsidized housing. Also, re suburbs, one of the direct consequences of opposing residential growth in urban areas is more exurban sprawl, with all the environmental consequences that entails.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 8:28 AM
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J Roth, natt, as I said, gentrification is a consequence of the demand for UMC urban housing growing outpacing supply. The UMC population in the wealthy high density metropolitan areas has grown, at least in absolute terms along with the population. There has also been a big shift in preference among this group for urban vs. suburban life. If these two things aren't around then you won't have major gentrification issues.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 8:36 AM
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Blaming hipsters for liking to live in non-monocultural places is a bit daft

Hipsters don't move to a new neighbourhood because of their old one became mono-cultural, but because they can no longer afford the old one. It wasn't the folks in cheap rent controlled places in the East Village that moved to Williamsburg and began its gentrification.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 8:43 AM
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My mother lives in the gentrified East Liberty -- on the Shadyside end, but the gentrification of Sliberty means that she has lots of stuff to walk to--groceries, restaurants, tchotchkes--that wasn't there at all when I was a kid. She doesn't drive and it isn't a problem in the slightest, which is really fantastic for her. But interestingly, too, the neighborhood is in many ways more like it was when she was a kid. I wonder if part of what makes gentrification in Pittsburgh seem more benign is that a lot of it is taking the form of plumping neighborhoods back up that were on hard times, rather than the relentless colonization of fresh new neighborhoods. All the destruction of interesting, pleasant, close-knit communities belonging to racial and ethnic minorities already happened, so now it's easier to be happy about what upswing we can manage?


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 8:44 AM
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65.last conflicts with 66. If people prefer urban life, then they won't move to exurbs in the absence of (cheap) urban housing. Indeed, witness the revival of Hoboken, a concept unimaginable 25 years ago.

My point is that there are gentrifying pressures here, but they are tempered by strong community groups, City commitment to affordable housing, etc. There's no inherent conflict between improving a neighborhood and enabling longtime residents to stay.

WRT Atlantic Yards, maybe it's just that not everybody's impressed by Frank fucking Gehry.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 8:47 AM
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WRT Atlantic Yards, maybe it's just that not everybody's impressed by Frank fucking Gehry.

AGGGGH HATE.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 8:48 AM
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67: Aren't hipsters generally youngsters coming from outside the city? I doubt that any significant proportion of the (early) Williamsburgers came from apartments they were paying for elsewhere in the city.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 8:48 AM
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Gehry is out entirely at AY.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 8:49 AM
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71: A whole bunch of folks did indeed move from places in the East Village whose rents had gone way up. As far as I can tell that happened and made B-burg a place that youngsters from elsewhere wanted to move.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 8:51 AM
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68 strikes me as largely right. And actually, isn't what's happened in Harlem largely of that sort of benign character?

Where the heck does yr mom live, foxy? Not very much of East Liberty housing is "on the Shadyside end".


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 8:51 AM
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73: Ah, I had misunderstood the dynamic. As it happens, hipsters are moving to Lawrenceville partly because it reminds them of Brooklyn/Williamsburg - no one got priced out of anywhere else (I guess a couple pioneers maybe would have lived in Friendship if they could have, but they're not comparable neighborhoods in any way).


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 8:54 AM
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OK, wish I could stay and talk, but I have to go make Iris cry (by telling her no more homophobic donuts).


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 8:55 AM
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We're discussing real estate instead of women taking off their clothes? No wonder Unfogged is dying.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 8:56 AM
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re: 66

Yeah, Glasgow's population is about 1/3 of what it once was, so there isn't quite the same pressure. There's still been price rises, and some areas with shifting demographics, but the areas I lived in during the 8 or so years I lived in Glasgow were socially quite mixed then, and, as far as I know, little has changed in that respect.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 8:57 AM
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Ald/r Court -- so, lovely upscale housing stock of long standing. I'm not quite sure where Shadyside ends and East Liberty begins, but it seems to me that she lives in Shadyside but does all her shopping and bus-catching in East Liberty.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 8:58 AM
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In re nekkid ladies: I am more or less with frowner. Burlesque for the most part makes me roll my eyes. No, you are not reappropriating the signifiers of your objectification; you're taking off your clothes for people. And that is cool and I have precisely zero problem with it, rock out, but, no, no binaries are being deconstructed blah blah blah. This doesn't magically change because you have a tattoo.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 9:01 AM
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I think Pittsburgh may be a somewhat different case. What I'm thinking of are low density urban neighborhoods with cool housing stock where the gentrifying pressures are so intense (and housing prices get pushed so high) that it's simply not feasible to build low-density affordable housing there, anymore. But then when you try to build higher-density housing (to make the financing work) you get a lot of pushback from gentrifiers, who like the "character" of the neighborhood.

But that said, I imagine that the whole housing funpocalypse has messed with the conditions I used to assume.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 9:03 AM
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Pwned'y.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 9:05 AM
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65.last conflicts with 66. If people prefer urban life, then they won't move to exurbs in the absence of (cheap) urban housing. Indeed, witness the revival of Hoboken, a concept unimaginable 25 years ago.

Nope. People who prefer urban life but can't afford it will still want housing. It's a class domino effect. And Hoboken as an example of exurban sprawl? Actually it's urban gentrification - existing working class urban area ten minutes subway (PATH) ride from Wall St gets tons of young folks moving in, looking for cheap housing close to Manhattan. Housing stock gets renovated, place gets more expensive, and the process starts over someplace else. No different from Brooklyn except for the somewhat different submix of gentrifiers - more first job corporate types, less artists and grad students.

Aren't hipsters generally youngsters coming from outside the city? I doubt that any significant proportion of the (early) Williamsburgers came from apartments they were paying for elsewhere in the city.

Some of both, but new arrivals only started moving to Williamsburg when they couldn't afford the East Village anymore, so they went one subway stop away across the river. Then they got priced out and started moving further east or north to East Williamsburg, and now Bushwick, or Greenpoint.

And Gehry isn't an issue here. The opponents scream about the thousands of new units, and demand the number be drastically lowered. I've spent plenty of time talking with them and browsing their sites.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 9:06 AM
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74 Harlem illustrates a case of what often happens if you have rent control - i.e. not that the existing community gets destroyed by the direct economic displacement of its residents, but that it doesn't get renewed. As the older folks die or move away, they get replaced by a whole other type of population. And in the case of Harlem it's worth noting that buppies moving in and replacing poorer Blacks is still a change in community. I live in Clinton Hill right next to Fort Greene. When I moved here, Fort Greene was well on its way to full gentrification, but whites were still a small minority (I was often the last white person left in my subway car by the time we hit the Fort Greene stop) - the hipster and yuppie bars were filled with young, well educated blacks, be they artsy types or Wall St ones. And what Harlem or my area also illustrate is that when gentrifying whites are looking for a poor neighbourhood with affordable rents, they have a very strong preference for ones with an existing white population even if it is only a fairly small minority. Hence the spread of white gentrifiers to western Inwood, with its lower end housing stock and greater distance from 'nice' areas before they moved into Harlem. That only happened once a class shift was already under way.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 9:33 AM
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REDFOX and SNARKOUT are having a conversation about Sally Quinn and David Broder.

REDFOX: Ugh. Shut up, you... you... What's the word I'm looking for?
SNARKOUT: "Monstrous fuck"?
REDFOX: No! There's a word I'm looking for!
SNARKOUT: "Parvenu"?
REDFOX: [smacks Snark's foot] YES! THAT WAS THE WORD I WAS LOOKING FOR!

(Thoughtful pause.)

SNARKOUT: But you know, David Broder there was calling Bill Clinton a parvenu.
REDFOX: I know! But HE IS THE FUCKING PARVENU!
SNARKOUT: Mm. Guess what?
REDFOX: What?
SNARKOUT: It's mole.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 9:35 AM
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The Atlantic Yards brouhaha produced some really frustrating conversations here in the Slope. If it came up, I'd start talking about the failure of the plan to include sufficient infrastructure (transportation, schools, fire and police protection, etc.) for all the new residents of that area, which would disproportionately place the burden on the surrounding neighborhoods. And then someone would inevitably say, "And the very worst part is that the stadium will block my light! Don't they know it's west of Park Slope?" Yes, you're right. The very worst part is the change in your shadows around 5pm.

80: Yup, yup, yup. It's the superiority to "regular" strippers that bothers me, as if strippers aren't performers who are conscious of what they're doing. I was invited to go to a burlesque show with a guy I was sleeping with and his girlfriend, and they were all "oh it's so radical and artsy." I did not join them, and the following night, they emerged pretty shell-shocked. Apparently the show they went to was much more freak-show than titillation. A woman inserted a bunch of items into her vagina and shot them out. Men in very good drag slowly stripped and then waved their dicks around menacingly. It might have been more on the radical end of burlesque, but as far as titillation goes, they agreed with me that it would have been more pleasurable to just go to a strip club. They may have achieved the goal of deconstructing the striptease quite well, but the effect seemed to be the alienation of the audience, which is cool if it's performance art.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 9:42 AM
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Re: naked ladies, this thing had me rolling my eyes so hard that something comical happened involving my eyes.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:00 AM
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You jaded Californians. An evening of young man having carnal relations with their bicycles was good enough for J.G. Ballard, it should be good enough for you.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:11 AM
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Yes it really is that amazing.

OMG vomit. Every line of that is obnoxious.

Who are these people who can think abstractly about the social/ecological virtue of their political choices and also get off at the same time? And if you are someone who sexually fetishizes your own political virtue, aren't you a total fucking douche?


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:14 AM
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88: It's not the idea of bike-fetish that bothers me. It's the aren't-I-virtuous fetish that does.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:16 AM
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the gentrified East Liberty

Wait, what? Clearly Pittsburgh has changed much more than I could have ever expected.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:17 AM
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90 - Chains! Lube! Nipples! Quick release seatposts! Derailleurs! Young men with ridiculous handlebar mustaches mounting their velocipedes with tantalizing slowness!


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:21 AM
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The burlesque thing has never seemed that political, to me. I've seen a few TV shows about the UK 'burlesque scene', and the people involved seem quite transparent about the fact that basically they want to show off and have people look at them, and they think that doing it retro/burlesque style is more fun/cool/hip. I don't really remember anyone involved claiming that it was particularly about reclaiming anything, or subverting much at all.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:22 AM
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87: Did you actually go to that? I read the description the other night and my eyes were rolling already.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:22 AM
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92: Reduced carbon emissions! Critical Mass rides! Saddlebags full of organic greenmarket produce! I'm almost there...


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:24 AM
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The burlesque thing has never seemed that political, to me.

Yeah, me either. I always read it as a kind of "strip clubs are great and all that, but the outfits are so cheeseball, and there's no drama anymore, and anyhow the music's stupid and the crowd sucks" kind of thing.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:26 AM
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Although obviously it clearly does have that dimension for a lot of people.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:26 AM
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I may have said this here before, but I think we really do need some new paradigms for thinking about gentrification. A lot of the old methods are simply obsolete -- when's the last time you heard about real estate agents engaged in "block-busting"? -- and there are new ways on the march.

I attended a meeting of a sustainable arts group a couple of weeks ago that was very interesting. It's an ongoing series of meetings, and this one was focused on transportation. Part of the reason I went was that I felt, rightly as it turned out, that the largest part of the proposed "green" alternatives would be focused on bicycling. Now, I don't even own a bicycle, but I've always tried to be a bike supporter. However, I sense that there are a lot of unacknowledged biases present when MC and UMC white people get on the bicycle bandwagon. In fact, some of that was made very explicit at the meeting (without negative comment). A representative from a non-profit that aims to provide a rental bike service in MPLS allowed that their research had shown that the ideal target market for improving bike commuting numbers was professional women in their 20s and 30s. Therefore, rather than focusing on neighborhoods where there was a great need for alternative transit, they've identified the neighborhoods where they think that a lot of middle-class, employed women would be likely to patronize their service. Unsurprisingly, the clusters of rental bike depots were downtown, the university, and the overwhelmingly white and middle-class south side of town (i.e. Uptown, for those of you who are familiar with how we use that term around here). Furthermore, their pricing structure actively discourages their customers from using the rental bikes for more than 30 minutes at a time. And the bikes have no cargo capacity. So basically, if you want to bike to work, or to hang out in a shopping district, or catch a concert or a movie, and you live in a majority-white section of town, you're golden. Commuting from working-class neighborhoods, doing your grocery shopping by bike or even just using a bike for an extended period of time? No dice. Basically, the plan is just to ease up rush-hour traffic, make yuppies feel good about themselves and make it very likely that most of the patrons will still need to own and maintain a car.
It was a disappointing meeting. One of the other presenters is apparently sitting on a huge pile of federal anti-congestion money. Can he give it to the county board to improve bus service in working class neighborhoods, so that people don't have to drive all the way to their jobs at the mall? Nope, the only thing he can spend it on is technology to make it easier for office workers to telecommute to their jobs one day a week. Unbelievable.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:27 AM
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All the irritating awfulness of 87 et seq. in one picture!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:28 AM
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94: Oh, I didn't go. I meant reading the description had me rolling my eyes.

Who are these people who can think abstractly about the social/ecological virtue of their political choices and also get off at the same time?

Not to mention there are plenty of people who use bikes because they like bikes, or because they're economical means of transport, and not specifically because the man! is trying to keep bikes down! Except in Portland and Denmark! Likewise, I'm sure some people who are one of LGBT don't glory in the transgressiveness of how they anyway are.

Reduced carbon emissions! Critical Mass rides! Saddlebags full of organic greenmarket produce!

Cockles! Kombucha! Whole Foods!


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:29 AM
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95 - That's the spirit. Thing about what the Frankfurt School might have said about critiquing American consumerism by riding a fixie, baby.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:29 AM
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99 - Oh my God.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:30 AM
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93: This is one of the many ways in which Americans are more annoying about sexuality. I don't know if it's because of latent Puritanism or the need to organize in the face of anti-sexuality conservatives, but there is way, way too much politicization of the bedroom. Like, you have to be able to theorize an ethical system around what turns you on. Maybe other people can get off that way, but I can't.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:31 AM
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Wow, 99 doesn't mess around.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:33 AM
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98: in moderate defense of the approach, if not the people: poor immigrant populations actually use bicycles for transportation at a significantly higher rate than UMC white people do (there's a report on "hidden cyclists" which discusses the numbers (reasonably sure poor minorities using bicycles as their sole means of transportation vastly outnumber other kinds of riders) but I can't find it). Much of bicycle advocacy is focused on pure numbers: get more people to ride bicycles, without necessarily thinking about demographics. That's because increased bicycle ridership per se makes bicycling safer for everybody (NYC has recently shown that as ridership numbers went up, the absolute number of accidents actually went down), and makes bicycle infrastructure more of a priority. Also, every engaged UMC white person they can get to start riding a bike becomes somebody advocating for a less auto-centric city. Now, this kind of trickle down advocacy is a little sketchy, and pretty much everything in your comment is still valid, but it's not like bike advocacy is entirely irrelevant to poor neighborhoods, and it's not like bus service is any kind of panacea.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:36 AM
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A propos to the conversation about gentrification, it's interesting to me that yuppies are starting to reclaim Vancouver specials. I think it is a good thing, and a sign of people feeling more positively about previous immigration, but I'd be curious if anybody knows more than I do about the specific social and/or architectural issue in play.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:38 AM
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105: Now, this kind of trickle down advocacy is a little sketchy hella sketch

Fixie!


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:41 AM
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I love that the girl in 99 can only exist if she's got a trust fund from God Himself. Either that, or retail and part-time modeling pay really well in SF.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:49 AM
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108: I love that she has a $400 fork on her bike, probably ten grand worth of tattoos, yet she can't afford handlebars, health insurance, or underwear.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:50 AM
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109: I was thinking the same thing. Except that the handlebars and underwear are probably both by choice.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:52 AM
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I love thinking about all those qualities as dealbreakers for the artist. "I'm sorry. You have health insurance and don't like gummi bears? This isn't going to work out."


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:54 AM
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108: Now I have this stuck in my head.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:55 AM
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Just watch out for those chicks who've been to Europe five times. Four is really the sweet spot.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:55 AM
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108: It's a composite, like New York Magazine does.

But seriously, I know a few people sorta like that. Or who would be mistaken for that woman by a casual observer. Most of them aren't so bad. Yeah, they, and their brethren, indulge in conspicuous consumption, but who doesn't? I saw a 45 y.o. working class white woman get off the train the other day wearing a black t-shirt with the words "BLACK MILF" picked out in fake rhinestones on it. And so what? People need to seize what joy they can in this horrible civilization. Now, don't get me wrong, I still sneer at hipsters all the time, but I have more respect for the ones who actually ride the bike and drink the PBR than I do for the ones who merely put on the drag.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:55 AM
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She saves a lot of money on beer, though, 'cause she prefers PBR.

I love that she's been to the utterly general "Europe" the quite specific four times.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:57 AM
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Also, to V the S of OBC, Frowner was pointing out a few months ago that nearly everyone we know in common has more tattoos than they can reasonably afford. The thing is, mostly it's because they have at least one tattoo artist friend, so usually a $400 piece is probably exchanged for a case of Black Label and some vegan brownies or something. And by "something" I mean a sack.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:58 AM
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fake rhinestones

So they were actually diamonds?


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:58 AM
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114: it's not the idea that there might be people like that anyone is reacting to, AFAICT (though there would be plenty silly about any actually existing such woman). It's the artist's putting out what is transparently his masturbation fodder as an ideal (about which presumably there is nothing silly).


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 11:00 AM
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114: I don't think anybody's actually making fun of the imaginary woman involved. I think they're making fun of dude who doodled his overspecific dream girl like a 10 year old drawing a dream house full of batman costumes and waterslides.

Also, women of the world: I don't care if it makes some dumbass in SF get a boner: for your own comfort and safety, unless you're wearing bike shorts with Chamois or for some reason wish to be naked while riding, wear underwear when riding your bicycle.

Also, women of the world with unrealistically drawn giant, real tits: maybe think about wearing a bra while riding, too, for your own comfort.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 11:00 AM
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Also, women of the world: don't run red lights indiscriminately, especially if the only means of stopping you have is a coaster brake. (I guess this implies she isn't riding a fixie? Curious.)


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 11:02 AM
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(I guess this implies she isn't riding a fixie? Curious.)

Fixies are for dudes? Blume and I were puzzling over that one as well.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 11:09 AM
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What's especially especially irritating about that cartoon (aside from the "girlfriend on the side" -- because lesbian sex is like totally hott and of course wouldn't threaten her devotion to her man, since a girlfriend could never be the primary romantic relationship in her life) is that this guy's fantasy girl works retail. Really, retail is his fantasy? If she were an attorney, or an academic, or a 3D computer modellor this would be less hot? Is it the ambition or the earning power that threatens him?


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 11:11 AM
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120: Part of the fantasy is that she'll get hit by a truck and, without health insurance, will die from internal bleeding, and then he'll spend the rest of his life lobbying for bicycle awareness. In telling the sad story of a young beautiful life cut short, he will get endless sympathy blowjobs from tattooed vegan girls with access to drugs.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 11:17 AM
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My rib-area is still sore from my collision with the pavement on monday. If I die from internal bleeding, I hope that as many of you as possible exploit my story for sex.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 11:18 AM
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I'm not sure it works for girls. If you die, I promise to give it the old college try.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 11:21 AM
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123: Would that really work? Excellent.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 11:22 AM
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123: Yeah, I think that is the aughties update to "My Girlfriend Fawn Liebowitz Who Died in the Kiln Explosion."


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 11:25 AM
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The picture linked from 99 gets it all wrong: there's no way she would be wearing a helmet. No one who rides a fixed-gear bike and runs red lights wears a helmet.


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 11:32 AM
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There's also no way someone that obsessively vegan is in love with gummi bears. Most of them contain the murdered flesh of our animal brothers and sisters!


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 11:36 AM
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129, No, that's totally believable actually. She had a dream in which her spirit animal told her that gummi bears were okay to eat.


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 11:39 AM
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Although I wonder if the gummi bear thing doesn't highlight what is such a turn-on about her, which is that she's a hypocrite (or, more kindly, non-ideological). She embraces the fashions of the working class while actually being leisure class. She supports vegan fashion while not actually being an irritating vegan. Her bike is barter-gear except for the parts that cost hundreds of dollars. She's cool in all the ways hipsterism offers while not being the sort of girlfriend who will hassle you about your consumer choices.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 11:41 AM
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...and of course, fucks chicks without being in any way a "lesbian" (shudder).


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 11:44 AM
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She has real breasts, but they're still gigantic.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 11:47 AM
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Actually, I rather like football there are lots of brands of vegan gummi bears, just not Haribo.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 11:52 AM
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...and of course, fucks chicks without being in any way a "lesbian" (shudder).

Certainly not. On the side only. Thank god her custom frame was built by an ex-boyfriend. What if she had built it herself? Or if the girl on the side built it! That would be terrible.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 11:53 AM
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134: I have probably eaten my weight in those, but they are not much like gummi bears (much squishier). German vegan stalwart Steinbacher makes pretty good Haribo knock offs.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 11:57 AM
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Er, Seitenbacher.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 11:58 AM
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"The sour bears, thankfully, are not that sour"

THANKFULLY?!

This only confirms that vegans have a messed-up relation to food.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 11:58 AM
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Am I the only person that thought 99 was deliberate parody (as in, making fun of the absurdity of this hypothetical woman)? It sure reads that way to me. Why else would she have vegan shoes but like gummy bears, have been to "Europe" four times, have a nice bike but no health insurance, wear a helmet but run red lights, etc.?

I'm not sure where everyone is getting fantasy masturbation fodder.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 11:58 AM
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After a meeting with a dissertation advisor yesterday had reached its conclusion, my advisor handed me a cup of gummi bears, told me to choose one, and ritualistically murder it in the manner of my choosing. I


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 11:59 AM
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Brock, you're too good for this world.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:00 PM
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140 was supposed to end with "I [heart] my committee" but it was disappeared.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:00 PM
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I thought you were just too overcome by the memory of your terrible act.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:00 PM
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139: I tried to read it that way too, Brock, but I don't think it holds up. The romance of "Intelligent mind" and the names of all her tattoo artists is too sincere.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:01 PM
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No one who rides a fixed-gear bike and runs red lights wears a helmet.

Weirdly untrue. They pick their safety-conscious sanctimony somewhat randomly.

Her bike is barter-gear except for the parts that cost hundreds of dollars.

Or more, in the case of a custom frame. Which was free? Oh I KNOW! The framebuilder is supposed to symbolize Hephaestus, the girl in the picture is fixie single-speed Aphrodite, and the dude drawing the picture is Ares, the god of radical urban riding.

You would think fakengers would be more into Hermes.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:01 PM
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139: Spent much time in the SF Mission, Brock?


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:01 PM
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To continue, I mean.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:02 PM
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Plus, you know, it doesn't say that she's a vegan. It just says that she has vegan shoes. You can have the shoes, and can even have bought them because they're vegan, without being vegan or even vegetarian. You just want to show your support?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:03 PM
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139: you're welcome to browse the artist's web site to see if you find any evidence for that proposition.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:04 PM
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148: Which goes to AWB's astute 131.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:05 PM
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She exists!


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:06 PM
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151: except those tattoos are drawn on.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:06 PM
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151: I WAS GONNA SAY!


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:07 PM
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"Big-handed Hephaestus", I believe Homer calls him.

I read the subject as more of a Diana type, though.

Diana is way hotter and more badass than lame conventional Aphrodite. Don't forget that Aphrodite is married to lunkheaded Hephaestus and seeing i-banking Ares on the side. Whereas Diana is unknowable and mysterious, just like the checkout girls at Villain's Vault.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:08 PM
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144: doesn't the label at the bottom, "The Modern San Franciscan", imply the cartoon is a stereotype, not a dream girl? (Unless the illustrator's dreams are satisfied by all "modern" San Franciscans...")

The "Intelligent Mind" struck me as probably intended both as objectively true, and as self-aserted (or at least consciously known), i.e., an implication of a sense of superiority. The named tattoo artists struck me as turning art and self-expression into another form of branded consumerism.

146: And yes I realize this (closely) resembles some actual real people. That's why it's parody. I think the author was making fun of those people, not masturbating to them.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:10 PM
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While Athena is calling the shots at her firm with big consulting contracts with the Department of Defense.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:11 PM
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The named tattoo artists struck me as turning art and self-expression into another form of branded consumerism.

Not like Mike Giant!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:12 PM
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The illustrator's dreams are satisfied by real modern San Franciscan. Anyway, it's the ideal type, the perfection of the San Franciscan, with reference to which all actually existing San Franciscans are judged.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:12 PM
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From the link in 157:

My super fav thing to do in hotels is take down all the painting, photos, or whatever from the walls and draw on the back of them, then hang them back up. Suck this!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:14 PM
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Hmm. The website in 149 doesn't seem to support my thesis. I'd assumed this was a comic strip from an artsy local newspaper. Maybe not. I still contend it wouldn't be out of place if it appeared there.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:14 PM
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Speaking of freak, a dude in front of me on the train is singing along, loudly, in falsetto to the unrecognizable boring girlpop coming out of his headphones. The little kids across the aisle point and laugh, but it doesn't faze him.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:15 PM
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I think the author was making fun of those people, not masturbating to them.

But this just doesn't work for a lot of the characteristics, especially the specific kinds of body parts. "Perfectly curved hips" is a judgment the artist is making about the subject, not something she's thinking about herself.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:16 PM
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And Artemis was just trying to do her woman-only burlesque, when she was forced to aggressively bounce male interlopers.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:17 PM
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Oh god now it's "Don't Stop Believing."


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:19 PM
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Hold up, we can't have Artemis and Diana running around here. I realize that I was the first shamelessly to intermingle Greek and Roman names, but I have a soft spot for Diana.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:19 PM
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Blume, in light of 160 I've given up my theism, but "perfectly curved hips" works fine as a parody, of the sort of person to whom it's very important to be in great shape. (And there's no reason to think it's not intended both as objectively true and as her own (mildly arrogant) self-assessment, just like an "intelligent mind".)


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:20 PM
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Um, it's my thesis I've given up, not my theism.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:20 PM
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"perfectly curved hips" works fine as a parody, of the sort of person to whom it's very important to be in great shape.

This is reaching, to my (intelligent) mind.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:20 PM
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165: Artemis >>>>> Diana. So there. No backsies.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:21 PM
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Well *I* thought the comic was funny, even if all of you are taking it way too seriously, and even if the author didn't actually intend to be a comic at all.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:23 PM
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A kind mind,
A shapely, powerful heart,
Intelligent calves.

Is anyone a gentlewoman without these?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:23 PM
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I want to say something about the problem here not so much being the dude's masturbatory fantasy of the underwearless fixie chick but the clear implication that spanking it to a chick with tattoos and vegan shoes and crap taste in beer is subversive, but I think "because I'm a feminist" has already hit this point. I'm happy that he's able to get models in to act out his fantasies, though it would have been funnier if he had fixated on She-Hulk.

165 - Not Diana? Or even Diana?


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:23 PM
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I don't know those Dianas (though I do like Howl's Moving Castle the moviefilm). But I also like Current 93's cover of Comus' Diana.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:25 PM
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I'm happy that he's able to get models in to act out his fantasies incredibly successful, regularly invited to display his work in galleries, hailed as something of a hero by the fixie community, and lords over an ever-expanding commercial empire.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:26 PM
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173 - Not recognizing Emma Peel + liking Current 93 = Nazi. They used this formula at Nurmeberg.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:27 PM
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174 - Why else would models come in to act out his fantasies?


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:27 PM
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Just because she doesn't do what
Everybody else does
That's no reason why
We can't share our love

She's not a rebel, oh no no,
She's not a rebel, oh no no,
To me-ee-ee-ee-eeee


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:28 PM
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176: 'cuz he's ugly.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:28 PM
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I was born too late, and in too inhospitable a climate, for The Avengers. We haven't all had the privileges you've had, snarkout, and if some of us take comfort in apocalyptic neo-pagan "folk" music to ease our pain, who are you to judge?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:30 PM
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172: No, Diana


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:34 PM
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And how did I ever forget how totally fucking awesome that theme song/incidental music was?


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 12:37 PM
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As I get older and my misanthropy increases, I'm finding that misanthropy harder to identify and contain. Do I hate that picture because of what it reveals about the artist's individual fantasies? His implied politics, or lack of self-awareness? Because of what it reveals about the state of certain "hipster" enclaves, such as the City of San Francisco? Because all unrealistic sexual fetishizations are despicable? Because of knowledge that the object of the fantasy, though a ludicrous pastiche, nonetheless represents a certain kind of success in youth, beauty, and freedom which itself, at some level, is despicable? Who knows, but I really hate that picture.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 1:13 PM
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What I hate about people like the fellow who drew that drawing is that, if you're ever foolish enough to engage them in a conversation about the way they're complicit in their own reification, about the way they totally play into capitalism's recuperation of their "rebellion" into the mainstream commodity structure, they just whine about how they need to get paid for their art, man. And that's not the point.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 1:19 PM
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182 gets it exactly right.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 1:20 PM
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I approve of 182!


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 1:21 PM
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Aren't they at least as likely to whine about how at least they're doing something, even if it is only symbolic?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 1:21 PM
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I think after I drop out of grad school, I'll start a cult of Symbolism, where you're ONLY allowed to do things that are symbolic, because doing things that are real never lives up to the ideal and is therefore a sin against the Everlasting Symbol.

I probably will have a few more tenets but I'll work those out later. There also will be a ridiculous diet of some sort, so that people don't feel like it's just another church. This one's DIFFERENT, man. This one makes you work hard for your salvation, and your poor unenlightened neighbors will scoff at you, but you will just believe even harder because of how their mockery proves that you are one of the chosen few.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 1:29 PM
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Anyway, Halford, your story shows that you are on the path to enlightenment. You must strive to remove the mediation of your experience of the picture's hatefulness by relating it to other, more general things and accept it as simply hateful.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 1:30 PM
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I might also stage some cargo drops at carefully determined times and places.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 1:31 PM
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187: Adherents could dye themselves green and wear jodhpurs.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 1:32 PM
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The problem is that even your symbolic gestures have to participate in reality a little bit in order for them to symbolize anything at all. Some adherents, consequently, will retreat wholly into inaction, saying (or letting it be said) that this symbolizes the vanity of all worldly attempt; others will plunge headlong into the world of action, saying (or letting it be said) that this symbolizes the vanity of all worldly attempt.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 1:34 PM
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191- they would both be right! and as long as they kept up with their tithing, they would remain members in good standing.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 1:37 PM
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I take it only nonsymbolic tithes will be accepted.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 1:39 PM
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FWIW, Brock, your initial theism was mine, too, and I was reading along wondering why people were getting so bent out of shape about a piece of bog-standard hipster-mockery. But I too have given up my theism.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 1:41 PM
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"bog-standard" in this context s/b "blog-standard".


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 1:42 PM
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I would have thought it was (mild) satire, if I hadn't seen the guy's site.

I'm with Halford, both in the misanthropy, and the questioning of it. (I spend a bunch of mental energy in talking myself out of succumbing to being the cranky old man who yells at the TV.) Why is this guy's masturbatory fantasy so bad? Is it having any idealized type automatically wrong? If not, then what should he fantasize about? Lawyers? I-bankers? Unfogged posters? Would it seem more legitimate if he only fantasized about women that he found politically objectionable.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 1:43 PM
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98: Everybody did notice this, right: Now, I don't even own a bicycle, but I've always tried to be a bike supporter.? I just don't want it to entirely go to waste.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 1:45 PM
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Don't worry about it, Walt. Odisse odientibus est esse.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 1:49 PM
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193- no, no, the tithe is itself a symbol. On so many levels! For one thing, currency is inherently symbolic because it just stands in for debt. For another thing, giving your currency to ME is symbolic of renouncing the public sphere and consumerist society and unsymbolic fleshly charities and embracing the Symbol.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 1:51 PM
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That cartoon is obnoxious. So effortlessly fuckable! And she puts out on the first date, too!


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 1:51 PM
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197- I giggled.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 1:51 PM
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200: and her on-the-side girlfriend might come along too!


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 1:53 PM
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E. Messily, shouldn't your cult be called Symbology?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 1:59 PM
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And she puts out on the first date, too!

I found this part almost poignant. Dude, almost everyone has fucked on the first date at some point or another. Maybe just not with you.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 1:59 PM
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Ah, but if it were a policy


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 2:01 PM
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203: probably! Would you like to be the Bishop in Charge of Naming for it? You can have a cut of the tithes, but not as big as mine.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 2:02 PM
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If not, then what should he fantasize about? Lawyers? I-bankers? Unfogged posters?

My elaborate Will/Dsquared fantasy lets me do all there of these at once.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 2:04 PM
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Will/Dsquared doesn't sound that elaborate to me. Implausible, impractical and implicitly embarrassing, yes, but elaborate, no.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 2:09 PM
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The pairing itself doesn't need to be elaborate for the fantasy to be.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 2:11 PM
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79: I used to babysit a kid in that building! And it's totally Shadyside, but I see your point about East Liberty. Indeed, that's part of what makes it possible to revive commerce in East Liberty without displacing all the residents. Poor, black East Libertarians aren't exactly the Whole Foods' core market, but they're always in there.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 2:14 PM
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I'm still partly a follower of Btock's original theism. Here's an interview with the artist (but not specifically about this picture) that folks can read to assess. I must be old or something, because I could not really even make heads nor tails of the answers.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 2:18 PM
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That upside-down INRI cross would be a lot better if he had included the "o" in "Ivdæorvm".


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 2:22 PM
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I'm sorry to be going back so far, but this is my kind of thread.

And Hoboken as an example of exurban sprawl?

Obviously not - I know all about the history of Hoboken, because it was my HS classmates who were part of the first wave of moving there. You were presenting this notion that, if you don't let people build skyscrapers in Brooklyn, then people who wish to live in Brooklyn must then live in exurbs (and bear in mind, in NYC terms, the exurbs are Sussex County, NJ).

My point is that there are, literally, a million or more empty housing units/vacant lots in urbanized Greater NYC. The failure to build a few thousand units in Brooklyn is not forcing anyone to live in Long Valley, NJ.

The Gehry line was just a joke, obvs. Indeed, if anything, he was there to appeal to the gentrifiers (is there a more SWPL architect than Gehry?).


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 2:22 PM
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210: Official City of Pittsburgh view of the situation. I would have thought the busway would have been the boundary. I assume the street signs follow these boundaries? And why does that one little block north of Centre get to be Shadyside? (I assume this is hugely political, do they ever adjus tthe lines?)


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 2:28 PM
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And it's totally Shadyside

Yeah, it really is. But it's so close, and she so always heads out in that direction, that East Liberty looms large in the experience. It's fascinating for me. I went to Reizenstein for middle school and to the huge East Liberty Presbyterian church for my driver's ed classes. And now the Nabisco factory is "Bakery Square"!


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 2:33 PM
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Yeah, huh, I'd think the busway too.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 2:34 PM
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in the case of Harlem it's worth noting that buppies moving in and replacing poorer Blacks is still a change in community.

As was the replacement of buppies by poor blacks in the '50s and '60s - those gorgeous houses in Harlem weren't built for poor blacks, that's just who ended up in them when the black middle class left Harlem. And the elderly are not a sustainable demographic for any community but a retirement village - it was absolutely inevitable that, when the blacks who settled in Harlem in the 40s and never left died, they'd be replaced by another population.

Neighborhoods that are uniformly poor and/or uniformly elderly cannot survive. Either gentrifiers move in, or properties continue to deteriorate until there's little left. The Hill District of Pittsburgh is in many ways a model inner city community, complete with some of the earliest public housing in the USA. It's been "spared" gentrification; instead, I've seen it go from run-down to ghostly, in just 15 years. The bulldozers never stop tearing down old houses (and commercial properties), despite plenty of investment in new affordable housing and the replacement of nearly all the projects with new, subsidized housing targeted to the previous residents. There's simply no way that you can have a community occupied exclusively by extremely poor people in which the physical infrastructure is maintained - there's no money to do it with, no matter the efforts of the public sector.

My point is that, when done appropriately, gentrifiers can move into a neighborhood without making it uninhabitable for the previous population; you seem to object to anyone who isn't dirt-poor living in a dirt-poor community. The poor should stay in their hovels so that we can sigh at their picturesque plight.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 2:35 PM
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The Hill District of Pittsburgh is in many ways a model inner city community, complete with some of the earliest public housing in the USA.

It also got famously fucked by the construction of the (then) Civic Arena.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 2:38 PM
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217: Lots of white folks moved into Harlem too, and it caused a certain amount of upset. I remember in the early 00's the neighborhood was covered in posters mimicking the RATS posters the city puts up -- the posters said YUPPIES (or something of that sort) and had a drawing of a stereotypical white dude on a cell phone. The text again parodied the RATS posters, talking about all the resources that will be consumed/destroyed by the arriving hoards. I kind of thought they were funny, but they meant to be taken seriously. (At the time I knew all these white French people who had moved to Harlem. The first came there just because he got a beautiful apartment -- from a buppie -- and the rest followed on his recommendation. They all loved it because there were so many French speakers up there -- Haitian, Senegalese, etc.)


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 2:42 PM
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214: That's the UPMC Cancer Center, and fuck me, I can't recall what preceded it (nothing special, possibly surface parking). I'm guessing it was important to UPMC that it be in Shadyside (it is across the street from, and associated with, Shadyside Hospital).

There is no regular process for adjusting neighborhood boundaries, but they do get revisited occasionally - I've been told that North Point Breeze is a completely new invention, ca. 1992. Thing is, the boundaries are almost always well-defined (I agree that it's funny that the Busway isn't the boundary there - everyone assumes that it is - but of course, that's not a public right of way*, and it would be unusual to have a boundary that wasn't - it's nearly always streets), so it's hard to move them.

* the map shows it as a street, but I don't think that's quite right - it used to be part of the railway, and certainly it's not a publicly accessible ROW. I think it's actually PAT property.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 2:43 PM
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BTW, you know Reizenstein is now "Schenley HS"? Confused the hell out of me the other day when there was criminal incident "near Schenley HS" that was on Denniston St., which of course is nowhere near Schenley High School.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 2:45 PM
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219: Oh yeah, no doubt - in fact, wasn't there recently an article in the Times that Harlem is now majority white? But my point is that the neighborhood had been largely hollowed out - I'm pretty sure the population is higher now than it was 25 years ago - such that the first gentrifiers weren't displacing anybody (I don't think of dead people as having been "displaced" from their homes).


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 2:47 PM
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Things to know about Mike Giant: looking at pictures of him, he appears to be in his 40s, if not 50s.

In honor of that picture I just took a bike ride without a bra on.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 2:50 PM
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221: Speaking of P'burgh schools and the Hill (actually the Bluff I guess), it was 5th Avenue High School that had the first chapter of the National Honor Society back in the '20s.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 2:53 PM
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OK, I checked - Harlem bottomed out at ~100k in 1990, down from ~240k in 1950. It's up to ~118k. If the political will is there, no one need be forced out.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 2:55 PM
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In honor of that picture I just took a bike ride without a bra on.

But were you wearing panties?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 2:55 PM
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226: no!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 2:58 PM
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Girlfriend on the side.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 2:59 PM
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228: Now I just want to punch him in the face.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 3:04 PM
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229: That's mighty punk rock of you. I'll bet you have perfectly curved hips.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 3:09 PM
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230: And vegan gummi bears! RAWK!


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 3:10 PM
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Dude, almost everyone has fucked on the first date at some point or another. Maybe just not with you.

Sigh.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 3:11 PM
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(I am realizing that I literally cannot remember the last time I was on a bicycle. Weird.)


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 3:13 PM
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Wanna go out some time, JRoth?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 3:13 PM
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Yeah, my first reaction to 99 was Brock's, but the guy obviously enjoyed drawing hott chixxx (but with killer tats) far too much for it to be anything but beatoff material.

I don't understand how any of you Californians can stand yourselves.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 3:19 PM
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234: You're the best, apo.

Actually, I do realize that twice I probably could have gotten laid without even going on a proper date, but I was too dense/Catholic to make it happen.

I wasted a lot of time, people.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 3:20 PM
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I don't understand how any of you Californians can stand yourselves.

My Jewish heritage has enabled me to withstand levels of self-hatred that would be downright lethal to the average Presbyterian.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 3:27 PM
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237 is so great.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 3:28 PM
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Regarding the OP, I found this the most succinct description of what bugs me about Evelyn Evelyn:

you don't have to deal with the drawbacks of the trait you're highlighting, but you get to use its novelty to sell and make records. This is a problem regardless of whether or not you meant to hurt anyone.

I was vaguely sympathetic to Amanda and Jason until I saw this interview. Clearly clueless. Not that cluelessness isn't redeemable, but nothing either of them has written so far in response seems to show much sense of figuring out what the problem actually is. It all reads basically as "sorry you were offended, but we're nice people!"

Also, I thought this was pretty apt:

AMANDA PALMER WANTS TO SHOCK YOU. Just Don't Get Upset About It, 'Kay?.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 3:52 PM
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Also also, I'm not familiar with the site at all, but I do love the name "Tiger Beatdown".


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 3:53 PM
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you don't have to deal with the drawbacks of the trait you're highlighting, but you get to use its novelty to sell and make records. This is a problem regardless of whether or not you meant to hurt anyone.

Curiously, the same thing is true for a lot of gangsta rap.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 3:59 PM
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239, 240- you know you just hate art. Admit it, you hater!

hater.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 4:04 PM
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On second thought, they did have to learn how to play the accordian, ukelele, etc. in tandem, so in a way they did have to deal with a drawback of the trait they're highlighting. I guess I am just a hater.

Curiously, the same thing is true for a lot of gangsta rap.

Might I interest you in my new act, TwinzNdaHood?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 4:16 PM
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225 is right, Harlem's huge decrease in population means there's room for a large influx of people before people will be pushed out. In my corner of Harlem there seems to be a giant price differential between the new condo buildings on the corners and the older houses in the middle of blocks.

The times article mentioned in 222 was a stupid article which used a definition of Harlem that was much much too expansive, and so concluded that not only was Harlem majority white, but it'd been so for quite a while.

217 French tourist/Senagalese resident interactions are quite amusing. I like it when someone asks for directions in poor English and gets an answer back in French.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 4:26 PM
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hmm, the one thing Palmer said in her own defense that seems reasonable is that Evelyn Evelyn is a concept album with a long story arc that hasn't been revealed yet. It could be that there is more going on here than simply displaying disabled victims of child rape for the shock value. If the characters are developed and and the story meaningful, then what Palmer is doing is within the realm of normal art. Artists are allowed to pretend they are someone else to tell a story. From the outside, at least, pretending to be someone else looks like a big part of the fun.

On the other hand Amanda Palmer refers to Amanda Palmer in the third person an awful lot.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 4:34 PM
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I don't understand how any of you Californians can stand yourselves.

We can't, but at least we can console ourselves with cheese courses at just about any restaurant we please.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 4:40 PM
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That has not been my experience.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 4:44 PM
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245: I thought about that possibility, but it's lessened for me by seeing the clips of them performing as Evelyn Evelyn. It seems pretty clear that the whole point, for them and the audience, is how funny it is that they're dressed up as Siamese Twins and having to play in tandem.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 4:56 PM
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On the other hand Amanda Palmer refers to Amanda Palmer in the third person an awful lot.

JRoth doesn't see a problem with that.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 5:09 PM
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We can't, but at least we can console ourselves with cheese courses at just about any restaurant we please.

My god, all that unmerited self-regard and they won't serve you a proper dessert? No wonder you're always throwing yourselves off the Golden Gate Bridge.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 5:20 PM
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I've thrown myself off the Golden Gate Bridge more times than I can count.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 5:29 PM
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251: math skills can suffer after that kind of fall.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 5:30 PM
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It's important to get back on the horse and try again, though.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 5:32 PM
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BTW, I recognize 246 as an impressive feat of memory.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 5:38 PM
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87: Her saddle seemed to spread invitingly into the most enchanting of all seats while her two handlebars, floating finely with the wild grace of alighting wings, beckoned to me to lend my mystery for free and joyful journeyings, the lightest of light running in the company of the swift groundwinds to safe havens far away, the whir of the true front wheel in my ear as it spun perfectly beneath my clear eye and the strong fine back wheel with unadmired industry raising gentle dust on the dry roads. How desirable her seat was, how charming the invitation of her slim encircling handle-arms, how unaccountably competent and reassuring her pump resting warmly against her rear thigh!


Posted by: OPINIONATED FLANN O'BRIEN | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 5:39 PM
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I feel bitey this morning.

Is this common with anarchists? I arrested an anarchist last night with some kind of vampire caps, like these.

http://www.vampfangs.com/

He didn't bite anyone, but he did wave a knife around at a birthday party. Apparently someone convinced him to put it away by punching him in the face. His drunken plan was to then call the cops and have us arrest the guy who punched him.

I was going to try and get a proper pic of the whole package, vamp fangs along with anarchist symbol covered cap and leather jacket. Unfortunately, he got spitty at jail and they put one of those mesh spit hoods on him.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 5:44 PM
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To me, at least, the ferocity of the California hate seems disproportionate. I get that there are obnoxious people here, who have stupid bike porn film festivals and just in general take themselves way too seriously. But mostly I don't interact with them. Mostly I interact with people who have some of the following characteristics: niceness, intelligence, an interest in health and fitness, a desire to weird shit outdoors, creativity, entrepreneurialism, the dullness of being work-focused and introverted, and happiness.

Despite some large ups and downs, an unexpected uncertainly about my future after grad school, loneliness, and the periodic return of the depression that began long ago, the last few years have been some of the best of my life. Those years very clearly began when I moved out west. So I just can't hate California that much.


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 5:51 PM
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He may not have been an actual anarchist, gswift. Nor an actual vampire.

Also, he can't come to my birthday party.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 5:51 PM
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257.2: California's awesome, just some Californians are smug. And some are stupid, obviously, but show me someplace without stupid people and I'll die of asphyxiation because we're on the moon. Which would actually be pretty stupid of me so that doesn't even count.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 5:53 PM
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My god, all that unmerited self-regard and they won't serve you a proper dessert?

Cheese courses and dessert are not mutually exclusive. Why, just last night Sir K and I plied our dinner guests with both a cheese course* and dessert. The SWPLness was exquisite!

*As of just last week, Austin at long last has a proper cheese shop! My last three abodes (Brussels, Brooklyn, Edinburgh) prior to Austin were all literally within a block or two of fine cheesemongers, and it's something I've truly missed.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 5:53 PM
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I get that there are obnoxious people here, who have stupid bike porn film festivals

I'd like to point out that the stupid bike porn people are from *Portland*, thankyouverymuch.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 5:55 PM
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He may not have been an actual anarchist, gswift.

Ridiculous. He screamed "fuck the government" many times at jail. And come on, anarchist symbol on hat and jacket? What more do you need?


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 5:57 PM
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I did not know that there was an anarchist symbol.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 6:07 PM
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263: That's because their marketing department can't get itself organized.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 6:10 PM
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Eh, he was of that species of anarchists I like to call "Jr. High Anarchists". Although I personally have never met an anarchist with vampire teeth caps, I can certainly subscribe to the notion that they exist. I doubt I would invite any of them to my birthday party either, though.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 6:10 PM
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263: I learned about it from Batman comics when I was a kid.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 6:12 PM
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256: Well, many anarchists are vegans, so we probably wouldn't actually drink blood.

What you describe is not classic political anarchist behavior, no. Although for some reason I am reminded of a line spoken by one of the good characters in a GK Chesterton short story (The Vanishing Stars? Don't have it handy) about how changing policemen into sausages was a better definition of socialism than some that had been recently given.

Honestly, truculent spitty anarchists are sometimes just jerks expressing their jerkiness and self-importance in a tawdry way--they lean libertarian and think the Joker is really cool;l sometimes they're people without a theory background or a political support network for whom anarchism condenses their (generally accurate) feeling that the deck is stacked against them. (The first anarchist I met was of this variety, a working class kid from a not-super-cultured background who was fag-baited by the school bully, hit back and ended up in juvvie; I wonder what ever happened to him, but suspect it was nothing good.) I tend to sympathize with even the most badly-behaved anarchists simply because hey, sometimes the world seems so dreadful and hopeless to me that I too long in an untheorized way to smash everything and spit on cops. (Although if you introduce yourself as an Unfogger I won't spit on you personally, G Swift.)

I also assume that people who spit on cops are generally either white, high or so beat down by the system that they feel that they have absolutely nothing to lose.


Posted by: Frowner | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 6:18 PM
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266: Huh, that's interesting.

gswift's perp shouted "Fuck the government" -- perhaps he was a Tea-Partier.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 6:22 PM
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You know, I just don't see how an anarchist can threaten to call the cops and still expect to be taken seriously.

I know the anarchist symbol from a George Woodcock book that I bought at a garage sale when I was a teenager.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 6:25 PM
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Regarding the cartoon woman in 99: I could even believe that she is (a) not that much of a parody, and (b) not that much of a trustafarian.

Consider: Katharine "Kat", born in 1982, is the daughter of a school district administrator and a social sciences professor who grew up in the Connecticut exurbs. She spent 3 semesters at RISD studying fiber arts, dropped out and went to Portland, where she held a number of service industry jobs, studied massage and got to know a lot of people in the bike punk scene. She played drums in a punk band for 5 gigs and moved with her boyfriend to SF in 2006. She has a smallish trust fund that nets her about $600 per month, and her parents fly her back to the east coast 3 or 4 times a year. She was covered by her dad's health insurance until she was 25, and knows that her parents would help her out if she got into real trouble. Her parents also give her $1,000 every birthday, and whenever she goes home her mother takes her on some errand -- getting new contacts or some dental work -- that means she doesn't have to pay for those things herself. She lives in a shared house, paying about $850/month plus utilities and cable. She works about 32 hours a week at some boutique, making $9/hour. One of her housemates works at a pizza joint, so there's always free food around, and the people next door dumpster a lot and share their booty. She has similar hook ups for cosmetics, bike parts, clothes, tattoos, weed, etc. She was vegan for a long time, but her health is a lot better now that she eats fish and some dairy. She was involved with a feminist group in high school, but doesn't really do any activism anymore. She rides in Critical Mass a few times a year, and used do a lot of alley cats until she fucked up her back. She's had two shows of her own work, plus participated in some group shows, and every once in awhile she sells a piece.

All of those attributes are based on actual people I've met, and while I don't know anyone who fulfills them all, I bet if I hung out in the Mission all the time, I would have.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 6:26 PM
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269.1, meet 258. Don't you hate it when people can't get their story straight?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 6:30 PM
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270: and used do a lot of alley cats until she fucked up her back

?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 6:33 PM
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They scratch.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 6:34 PM
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Hm, well, either she was rescuing alley cats, but all the running around to catch them and bring them to the SPCA or otherwise find homes for them eventually fucked up her back;

or she was giving blow-jobs to dudes known as "alley cats" in the alley, which of course fucked up her back;

or she was doing, like, performance art in alleys -- that's underground! -- and her back got fucked up along the way so she couldn't do that any more.

I've known, or been acquainted with, a few people like those Natilo describes. Excepting the alley cat part.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 6:53 PM
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It's a kind of bike race through an informal city kind of course that includes alleys, I think. For bike punks and messengers and so on. You could certainly fuck up your back doing them.


Posted by: Frowner | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 7:01 PM
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You are kind, Frowner. Thanks.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 7:04 PM
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Nat, I'm not sure what you mean by "not that much of a trustifarian." If you are imagining that the woman in the picture has as much family support as your friend Kat, I'd say she's a full blown trustifarian. He trust may not pay out enough that she can avoid work altogether, but she has the most important feature of wealth: security. Unemployment will never hover over her the way it hovers over most people.

I don't mean this as a criticism. I have that level of comfort, too. But I don't fool myself into thinking I'm anything but privileged, and I imagine Kat feels the same.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 7:06 PM
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228 - The most interesting thing about that to me is how dated all the bands are. Which is the case for most punk rawk leather jackets, and yes, the Black Flag logo is the most stylish thing evar, but I am old and no longer punk rock and all those bands are way older than me. If, as Sifu says, Mike Giant is a grizzled dude in his 40s, that would square with his hawt tattooed ladies being into the Dead Kennedies and Slayer instead of Fucked Up and Kylesa or whatever today's discriminating bike messenger actually listens to.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 7:49 PM
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Artists are allowed to pretend they are someone else to tell a story.

And again, I'm not sure I see the difference between Evelyn Evelyn and Twin Falls, Idaho. Or Tommy, for that matter. Granted, I haven't read anything about this other than what's in this thread. I suppose I'm probably not the first one to bring either one up.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 7:50 PM
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279 - Part of it is that unlike TF,ID or Nikki S. Lee, I don't think it was made immediately apparent that Evelyn Evelyn was fictional. I mean, we take it for granted watching What's Eating Gilbert Grape? that Leo DiCaprio is not retarded, but given the press releases that Palmer seems to have been building, I don't know that it would have been immediately obvious that this was a character that she was putting on for an album.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 7:55 PM
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I'm not sure I see the difference between Evelyn Evelyn and Twin Falls, Idaho.

It may be simply the sensitivity with which the characters are treated. I haven't seen Twin Falls, Idaho, but I remember it got a lot of critical respect, and no complaints like these.

The difference between E^2 and TF,I could be the like difference between Long Duk Dong in 16 Candles and ...some sensitive treatment of Asian American high school students that I can't think of right now.

To know, I would have to listen too the E^2 album and watch TF,I. But I'm not going to do that right now.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 7:56 PM
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279: I haven't seen Twin Falls, Idaho, and am not familiar with it. But are you implying it's above any criticism?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 9:31 PM
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I haven't seen Twin Falls, Idaho, and am not familiar with it.

You should see it. It's a good movie. Made by a pair of identical twins who play conjoined twins in the film.

But are you implying it's above any criticism?

No, just that I don't remember any such controversy surrounding it, and it had a much higher profile than anything Amanda Palmer does. People can and will criticize whatever they want, of course. And as I said before, everything I know about Evelyn Evelyn is contained in this thread. I guess my puzzlement is over the notion that fictional characters could actually cause people such anguish that they feel they are owed an apology (or something - I haven't read the disabledfeminists thread) from the creators for ever having created them.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:25 PM
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I don't remember any such controversy

Which may just mean that I missed it, I suppose. Were it not for this thread, I'd still be completely unaware of EE, much less that there's a big fight going on over it.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:41 PM
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To me, at least, the ferocity of the California hate seems disproportionate.

speaking for my bit of California-hate, I was being facetious. I actually think that most of the 99-hate was coming from Californians; what I was commenting on was that the particularly nauseating aspects of 99 are apparently so ubiquitous that Californians bristle at it incredibly strongly.

This has come up in past discussions of hippies, New Agers, and earnest, Prius-driving liberals; apparently these mildly annoying (but basically benign) types are so common, if not dominant, in CA that y'all are hypersensitized to them. It doesn't seem healthy.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 10:54 PM
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283, 284: the criticism of Amanda Palmer, deserved though it might be, is largely because of her boyfriend, I think. Nobody else would give a shit, otherwise.*

* N.B. I am stealing this theory from the guy who has the cat with the most twitter followers, who was sharing it earlier. I doubt it's original to him, either.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-20-10 11:09 PM
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and whenever she goes home her mother takes her on some errand -- getting new contacts or some dental work -- that means she doesn't have to pay for those things herself.

Wait, what? I had to pay for my new contacts myself! Although I did get a bit of a referred-through-the-family's-immigrant-network discount.*

*No actual discount, but it turns out that a US branch of one of the largest optometry chains in Taiwan is less expensive than a regular US-based place.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 2:32 AM
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The hate directed at 99* did not, until it was said to have been, strike me at all like California hate. Lots of different people in that state and one type or even a few aren't really enough to stand in for the whole state. Anyway, I've never run across anyone like 99; no doubt this is another blow against whatever Bay Area cred I might have had.

I did find out recently that I will be in SF this summer, and will need to live in SF itself, so I guess I'll be able to update my knowledge. I do want to find a place where there's parking, so that will probably put me out of many neighborhoods.

*"99" made me think of the highway in the central valley until I realized it was the comment number.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 2:48 AM
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Cheese courses and dessert are not mutually exclusive. Why, just last night Sir K and I plied our dinner guests with both a cheese course and dessert. The SWPLness was exquisite!

The Heartlanders serve cheese and dessert at the same meal too, M/tch. It's just that the cheese is served in cubes with the hors d'oeuvre. Or possibly melted on top of the broccoli with the main course.


Posted by: KR | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:01 AM
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The hate directed at 99* did not, until it was said to have been, strike me at all like California hate.

I don't think the original reactions to 99 were California hate. What I was trying to get at is that the hate of 99 was so strong that it instantly jacked the thread, which struck me as suggesting that the elements contained in and around 99 are so immanent in CA that people are on a hair trigger about them. That* made me, facetiously, make comment 235.

* Plus the evident loathsomeness of the artist, as revealed by his website, and the fact that the guy's some sort of star out there.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:43 AM
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Followup to 76: The good news is that Iris didn't cry about not being allowed to get donuts from Mr. Rightwing Donuts. The bad news is that she wanted to either jail or assault him for his beliefs. So we got to have a bonus First Amendment discussion.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:52 AM
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||

Hey, Megan, if you see this, you* might be interested in this very nice map of watersheds and damming in this neck of the woods. I know that eastern water issues are alien to you, but still: watershed maps in the local paper.

* as well as others of a geeky bent

|>


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:56 AM
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279, 280, 281

I haven't seen TFI, either, so I have no idea whether or not there was/could have been/should have been any controversy. I think 280 is largely correct, that it is the portrayal in each circumstance and whether it is dealt with nicely or not, rather than any particular appropriation of disability, that gets people upset.

I completely agree that Tommy raises many similar and related problems. As do any number of other books, movies, and television shows that include inane, stereotyped versions of disability, usually played by someone without any.

the notion that fictional characters could actually cause people such anguish that they feel they are owed an apology

Really? If AP had made up the story of a poor, abused, orphaned, neglected black girl, who had been "discovered" by Amanda but was apparently borderline retarded and wouldn't do any interviews, and then Amanda started "touring with" the character, which was played by her in blackface, while she giggled about how funny her dark skin looked - this would get an apology. I feel like this kind of thing happens pretty regularly, fact, that people push boundaries and get called out for hurting people. That's fine. Usually they see that they've gone too far, apologize, and stop. Usually they don't insist that they don't understand how anyone could think they meant any harm.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:13 AM
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The Heartlanders serve cheese and dessert at the same meal too, M/tch. It's just that the cheese is served in cubes with the hors d'oeuvre. Or possibly melted on top of the broccoli with the main course.

Uhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh cheddar and apple pie?????????


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 10:12 AM
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I'm calling sexism on the idea in 286. Palmer has a big fan base for Dresden Dolls and her solo work, and the controversy started in her fan base, perhaps with some outside attention because of the involvement of FB Cobain.

When men get media attention, people rarely say it is just because of their girlfriends.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 10:12 AM
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But the Dresden Dolls aren't very good.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 10:16 AM
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I guess my puzzlement is over the notion that fictional characters could actually cause people such anguish that they feel they are owed an apology (or something - I haven't read the disabledfeminists thread) from the creators for ever having created them.

The post at disabledfeminists is very tempered and doesn't demand an apology or anything like that. It's just an examination of how the author interprets what's going on with AP's representations of disability.

And I guess I'm puzzled at your puzzlement. Media images are pretty powerful, and particularly for minority and marginalized groups that don't get portrayed very often, how they do get portrayed can matter quite a bit.

And in this case, the author of the post at disabledfeminists is a fan of AP, so I can definitely see why she'd get upset when someone she seems to like and admire does something so clueless with respect to an issue the author is personally affected by.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 10:26 AM
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Ben, if not being very good kept you from having a big fan base, we would live in a very different world.

Actually, I hadn't checked them out until now. (We basically missed all music aimed at grown ups that came out in the aughts.) I thought the videos were entertaining. She has a real presence.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 10:30 AM
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"Uhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh" s/b "Mmmmmmmmmmm".


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 10:32 AM
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296: Is Neil Gaiman any good?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 10:36 AM
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Not IME, but M E is pretty limited.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 10:37 AM
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The post at disabledfeminists is very tempered and doesn't demand an apology

That's true (I had read the post, but not the attached comments).


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 10:54 AM
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Since I've been accusing other people of sexism, I might as well admit that by "a real presence" I meant "looks good in her underwear."


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 11:03 AM
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Twin Falls, Idaho is very good. It's been a while since I've seen it, but I do remember that it dealt pretty intensely with problems of identity and separation in ways that were not like "oh these people over here who are super-freaky have special problems no one can really understand but boy isn't it interesting" (like Rainman), but more like a story about the twins as human beings with needs and desires different from one another. I don't know; maybe it's a fine line. Maybe it was just a freak show. But I didn't get the sense that it was making some kind of joke or curiosity out of disability; it was about people, who have a disability. I'd like to hear the argument that it was disability porn and I am just missing it.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 11:09 AM
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I have a friend who went out with Amanda Palmer once. I wasn't going to share that story, because look! Boring story. But I learned last night that activity for the one date was a nude modelling gig. Now it's a slightly less boring story, because look! Nudity!

295: I don't really know enough about it to say, but the idea is not that people are only paying attention to her because of her boyfriend, it's that her boyfriend's fans are pissed at her in a "She's Yoko!" kind of way, and are thus trying to start shit with her.

I don't like the art either of them produces all that much, and have never seen either of them in their underwear, so there you go.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 11:28 AM
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I've been thinking about it a bit more, and the difference is maybe that the empathic perspective of the viewer seems to be aligned in TF,I with the twins themselves, not with the girl who falls in love with one of them. She's interesting, but we don't feel, as viewers, like outsiders looking in on what it's like to be them. We're granted the opportunity to imagine the world through their experience.

That seems different, to me, from the kind of movie where there's a "normal" person whose perspective on the disability mediates our spectation, or where the perspective of the film is at a sort of condescending distance from the mental and emotional life of the disabled character (like Forrest Gump--isn't it funny when he does that silly dance? oh yay for him that the girl likes him after all!).


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 11:29 AM
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have never seen either of them in their underwear

But have you seen them in your underwear?


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 11:31 AM
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How is nude modeling a date activity? Come watch me hold still while a bunch of art students draw me?" Or was it "come watch me hold still while the photographer fucks with the lights for an hour and then I vamp a little"?


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 11:32 AM
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308: They were both modeling, at the same time. I don't know if it was for an art class or a photo shoot, or what, but it was a two person tableaux.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 11:33 AM
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If it was "a", it was a tableau.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 11:41 AM
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309: Sounds like a "twist" on one of those semi-scripted blind date shows on MTV.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 11:42 AM
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310: fine. The tableaux, in whatever number, incorporated persons numbered more than one.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 11:44 AM
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Im not sure 312 is right either, but I'll be damned if I'm going to try again.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 11:45 AM
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I'm not telling you who Im is, either.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 11:45 AM
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311: that was my thought when I heard about it. A little precious, or something.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 11:46 AM
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It's actually "Thex tableaux".


Posted by: Awl | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 12:11 PM
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never seen either of them in their underwear

In a google image search for Amanda Palmer, easily 9 out of 10 pictures are her in her underwear.

M/tch: I guess the issue is that "offensive" and "art" aren't words that really fit together in my head. Dumb, boring, poorly executed, sure*. I've snorted and rolled my eyes a-plenty--even been nauseated here and there--but have never felt offended by art, even (perhaps especially) the kind that's calculated to offend. Maybe that's just an expression of clueless straight white male privilege**, but I'd like to think it's more philosophical than that.

*I haven't seen enough of the project to know whether any of those apply; I'm also only minimally familiar with AP's other work, so.
**This probably reads as sarcastic and dismissive, but I mean it straightforwardly and unironically.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 12:53 PM
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In a google image search for Amanda Palmer, easily 9 out of 10 pictures are her in her underwear.

I believe it.

On the other hand, in a google search for "Neil Gaiman underwear", only about 6 out of 10 pictures are of Amanda Palmer in her underwear.

So I guess now I've seen that!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 12:59 PM
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I didn't know she had a famous boyfriend. I just know I don't like the songs. It strikes me as something with an entirely female intended audience.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 1:09 PM
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319 - She's married to comic book dude and best-selling fantasy novelist Neil Gaiman, author of Coraline (among many others).


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 1:37 PM
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I didn't know she had a famous boyfriend. I just know I don't like the songs. It strikes me as something with an entirely female intended audience.

Huh, that's not my impression at all.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 1:45 PM
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An unrelated aspect that irritated me a lot: Some AP fans responded the complaint (this project seems to ignore the lives of real people with disabilities) by getting offended on behalf of conjoined twins, because being called "disabled" is an insult.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 2:23 PM
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I [...] have never seen either of them in their underwear

Congratulations! You clearly have managed to avoid Boston magazine and the weekend culture and arts insert from the Globe.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 2:53 PM
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You clearly have managed to avoid Boston magazine and the weekend culture and arts insert from the Globe.

True. But then apo had to go and trick me with the google search thing.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 3:01 PM
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She's married to comic book dude and best-selling fantasy novelist Neil Gaiman, author of Coraline (among many others).

Hmm, either I didn't know that or I had heard that but didn't register that fact because I didn't know who Amanda Palmer was.

Is it wrong that this makes me like Neil Gaiman less?* I mean, of course he would marry a sexy nerdgrrl burlesque performer who is 16 years younger than he is. It's hard to imagine a pairing that would do more to reinforce a certain stereotype of him.

* I am inclined to say that it is wrong. I think, in general, that it's easy to read too much into who someone chooses to marry -- like any low frequency event there's no way to tell whether or not it is part of a trend. Also, I really don't know much about Amanda Palmer other than what has been said and linked in this thread, and that has skewed negative.

But, still . . .


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 3:16 PM
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322: Wow, that is annoying.

I think (non-disabled) people are generally confounded by disability issues. Do we need a national conversation on disability, or is there another route to improving understanding?

One of the weird things about the ADA was that it wasn't the culmination of a public struggle for rights/recognition/accommodation. There were, obviously, public aspects of the struggle that occurred, but it wasn't primarily or explicitly public (in the way that other civil rights issues have been). I would imagine that some of that is that, paradoxically, the pre-ADA public was inclined to ignore the disabled (even when they were protesting and calling attention to themselves), and I certainly don't wish Bull Connor or Stonewall on disabled people. I just suspect that some of the popular confusion on this issue (are you allowed to call people disabled; are you allowed to call the non-disabled "fully able") comes from this fairly recent sea change in the social status/role of the disabled without an accompanying narrative of transformation.

Also, I think that the conflicts within the disabled community (eg, deaf parents who don't want their children taught to speak) are more foregrounded than the internal conflicts of previous groups fighting for civil rights, which leads to further uncertainty.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 3:32 PM
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Palmer and Gaiman are engaged, not married. (Unless they got married yesterday or something.)


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 3:36 PM
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conflicts within the disabled community (eg, deaf parents who don't want their children taught to speak)

elaborate on this?


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 3:38 PM
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also FWIW the "Deaf Culture" take on this is that deafness is not a disability and that deaf people are not disabled. I find this to be problematic in several ways.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 3:40 PM
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328: There was a long comment thread on this here.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 3:44 PM
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On whether or not deaf children should get speech therapy?


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 3:47 PM
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Wow, I don't think it's a good idea at all for me to read that thread.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 3:48 PM
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No, on whether deafness is a disability.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 3:50 PM
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Yeah, I don't have any interest in having that discussion here. I AM interested in knowing what, exactly, JRoth meant in the quoted bit, before I respond to it. JRoth! What, exactly, did you mean in the quoted bit?


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 3:52 PM
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Yeah, don't, E. Mess. I am wrong in it a lot. Also, in it, I admit to having seen Bubble Boy, which I now cannot remember ever having seen.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 3:52 PM
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I can't help it! I started reading it! Somebody take my internet away! MAN, you guys don't know what you're talking about.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 3:54 PM
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293 seems entirely reasonable to me and the initial post on the disabledfeminists site was quite moderate. I found myself reacting a bit against the tenor of some of the comments over there, in which the proposition that any representation of an experience other than one's own is a colonialist appropriation seemed to be accepted uncritically. Of course all representations need to be critically evaluated, but art has to allow for imagining the experience of others. Similarly, while I can see the able-bodied benefactor helping the diabled artist trope, the more immediate one would seem to be the persons semi-established in the music industry helping (imaginary) non-established persons one. I'm not thinking of examples, but I feel like there have been other examples of "discoveries" that were actually known artists trying out a new persona.

I also am not sure how much the metaphor of Blackface applies here. To bring in another recent persona project, would folks consider Of Montreal's Georgie Fruit character to be an offensive example of Blackface? I guess the question, once we take the Othello/Miss Saigon version of Blackface off the table, is whether this is ultimately a caricature or not. I'll have to see what the final project is like, should it ever come out, to decide if it's actually offensive or something more complex and interesting.

I certainly agree that Palmer's response so far has been a pretty tone-deaf (in the metaphorical rather than literal sense), and her fans have displayed that unfortunate internet Us v. Them thing.


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 3:55 PM
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336: This is true. It seemed that way at the time, too. I think we used to have a lot more randomly speculative conversations without any evidence, which is why the analogy ban had to be instituted.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 3:55 PM
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MAN, you guys don't know what you're talking about.

SCMT isn't around anymore, don't blame us for him.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 3:58 PM
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Today is Bave D's birthday, so I guess we can't give him shit about this either.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:00 PM
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Men have tried to pick me up in bars with remarkably similar lines. Multiple times. Also (in the presence of a hearing friend who was signing with us and interpreted the whole thing) loudly discussing the theory, the likelihood of its being true, and what it would be like with deaf girl.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:04 PM
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Now I'm quite pleased to have expressed almost no actual opinions in that thread.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:06 PM
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Whoops, sorry not to answer faster. All I meant is that issues like what you describe in 329 are out in the open in a way that internal conflicts among, say, black civil rights movementarians were not. IOW, I, as someone who doesn't pay any special attention to disabilities issues, know* that there are significant numbers of deaf people with radically different takes on deafness and its meaning; I don't think that a similarly-attentive white person in 1964 would have been aware of internal dissent in the civil rights movement.

The result is (to exaggerate) paralyzing uncertainty - it was straightforward to know what a pro-civil rights stance was in 1965, but it can be much harder to know what a pro-disabilities rights stance is now (e.g., am I offending deaf people by treating deafness as a disability).

* and not just from reading about it here


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:07 PM
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I still can't tell what it is that you "know", though- are you saying that deaf children should be forced into speech therapy? There's no "conflict within the disabled community" that I know about that looks anything like this.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:12 PM
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BTW, this isn't to blame the disabilities rights movement for not giving clearer guidance or anything; it's good that people are more aware of nuance. It's just bad for behavior during the time period when cultural norms are rapidly shifting.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:13 PM
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Anyway, there are lots of big marches and sitins and protests for accessibility, and laws, and funding, and housing. They don't get covered. MSM like cripples when they are being inspiring, not when they are calling attention to themselves. And people without disabilities don't like thinking about disabilities very much, I've found.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:15 PM
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There's no "conflict within the disabled community" that I know about that looks anything like this.

Maybe the cochlear implant issue?


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:18 PM
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To be fair, no marches or sitins or protests of any sort are ever covered by the MSM, except anti-tax things, anti-abortion things, anti-gay things, or pro-gay things.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:21 PM
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Maybe. My experience about implants has been pretty uniformly that hearing people don't know anything about them and think they are a miracle, and that deaf people are opposed to drilling into babies' heads and then forbidding them to use any signs. Which I wouldn't really characterize as "within" any sort of disability community


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:21 PM
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348: this is a good point. BURN SHIT DOWN!


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:22 PM
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344: I was speaking unclearly because I couldn't actually recall what the details of the issue were - I know that there is or was a controversy involving non-deaf children of deaf parents, and how best to raise them.

Perhaps the controversy was between the deaf and non-deaf, but my understanding had been that there was internal disagreement on the subject.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:22 PM
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I still can't tell what it is that you "know", though- are you saying that deaf children should be forced into speech therapy?

Since he wasn't saying anything one way or the other about what he thinks about what the children of the deaf should or shouldn't do, I'm confused why you think he might be saying anything of the sort.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:25 PM
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OK, sorry, I have to go be with my own children.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:26 PM
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I am curious what the operative understanding of "disability" is among those who do not think deafness is one.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:27 PM
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Because there isn't any internal conflict about this: speech therapy should not be mandated. So if he was thinking about a conflict, it would presumably involve someone thinking that it should be mandated.

Also I wrote that badly; I didn't mean that JRoth thought the argument, but that he might be referring to the argument.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:28 PM
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355 -> 352

354- no, the Deaf Culture people think that disability means exactly what all y'all normals do, except they don't include hearing loss at all. Then they all shriek loudly about It's A Culture Not A Disability, while people with non-aural disabilities frown and write blog posts about Disability Culture.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:30 PM
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Someone, sure; anyway, he was talking about children of deaf parents, not deaf children; are they also candidates for speech therapy? I suppose the absence of speech from one's parents when very young is a pretty big influence.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:30 PM
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the Deaf Culture people think that disability means exactly what all y'all normals do, except they don't include hearing loss at all

Picky readers might think that if they don't include hearing loss/inability to hear, then they couldn't mean what w'all normals mean, unless they also argue that w'all normals just don't know what we mean by "disability". Which doesn't make very much sense.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:32 PM
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Okay, but he was using it as an example of the kinds of things he knew about, to point out that he didn't know about some other things. But I am not familiar with whatever it is that he was talking about, which makes me distrust the premise that he is more aware of internal dissent than people were in the 60s.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:34 PM
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358: do you know?


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:35 PM
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358 continued: an even pickier reader might take note of the cleverly used word "except" marking off the very way in which the Deaf Culture perspective differs from the Normal one.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:37 PM
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Surely two people can define A the same way, and still disagree on whether X is a form of A.


Posted by: David | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:38 PM
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Anyway, my point actually is that people who have defined themselves as normal, and do not want to be called disabled, have similar ideas about what "disabled" means, whether or not they can hear.

These ideas are bad, and include all sorts of tired old stereotypes and discomfort and fear. But the Deaf people have them too.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:39 PM
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Deaf Culture people think that disability means exactly what all y'all normals do

Somehow I resist being called a normal.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:40 PM
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I couldn't articulate a definition, no. But that doesn't help the DC people claim that they use "disability" just as I do, given the fact that I'm inclined to include deafness among disabilities. I assumed that people who make the claim "it's a culture not a disability" (as if cultures couldn't exist among people with disabilities?) have given some thought to what they mean by "disability" (and "culture"). If it turns out that the answer to the question what it is that deafness is not is "the same thing you mean", that's pretty dissatisfying.

If the claim is that when I say "disability" I actually refer to something that doesn't include deafness, despite my belief that disability does, and that's why I and the DC people use the term univocally—that's what doesn't make sense. (N.B. I will not be convinced by counterarguments involving arthritis and "arthritis".)

I especially wonder why deafness is singled out. I mean, suppose I also thought that blindness was a disability, or hemineglect, or something.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:43 PM
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You'll always be abnormal to me, parsimon.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:44 PM
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Look, man, I think the "deafness is not a disability" thing is whack. But the people who do think it have similarly disorganized thoughts to yours- EXCEPT they don't include hearing as an element of "normal" or "unmarked" or "default" or whatever.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:47 PM
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That is, suppose I and a deaf culture representative had the following conversation:

DC person: Deafness isn't a disability.
I: Huh, really? What do you mean by "disability", then?
DCP: Exactly what you mean.
I: But I think deafness is a disability.
DCP: No, you don't.
I: Ok, forget what you mean. What do I mean?

Surely there must be an answer? The claim is substantiated somehow, no?

(In the back of my mind here is the thought, hey, it's not as if the absence of perfect pitch is a disability.)


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:48 PM
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Disability, in general usage, is ill-defined and completely dependent on sociocultural whatever. Having terrible eyesight used to be a disability, but now it is not because we have glasses. Being 5' tall is not a disability, but being 3' tall is. The idea that anyone needs to be all up in arms insisting that they are not disabled is dumb, and also really insulting to everyone else who is (differently) disabled.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:50 PM
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Anyway, my point actually is that people who have defined themselves as normal, and do not want to be called disabled, have similar ideas about what "disabled" means, whether or not they can hear.

These ideas are bad, and include all sorts of tired old stereotypes and discomfort and fear. But the Deaf people have them too.

This seems very usefully put.

It seems like there's an opposing but not necessarily preferable dynamic, too, where some people who would call themselves disabled are invested in a particular triumphalist narrative that is all about "Behold, I triumph over my disability! You would never even know I had it!" And that take seems also problematic. Or maybe I'm a churl.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:51 PM
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Disability is "not having all of the abilities that someone normally has".

Your definitions of disability are the same. Your definitions of normal are different.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:51 PM
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Drat, I forgot about the quirks of the i tag here.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:51 PM
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367: It's perfectly fine for them to think that deafness isn't a disability without a theory of disability to go along with it. (Though surely some of them must have one? There is theoretical work on disability, after all.) It's the further claim that there is no disagreement between them and me as to what a disability is that's set me off. And it seems as if the absence of a theory must be disadvantageous in conversation with those who disagree, simply because the latter are in the majority and will, unless COMPELLED to by the rigorous power of DIALECTIC and ARGUMENT, simply be able to say "look, you can use the term however you like, Humpty, but really you are disabled." You want to be able to come back with some account of what disability really involves such that deafness isn't one!

Though, really, in casual conversation it probably doesn't matter, likewise for group-formation etc. I don't even know what the ambitions of the DC people are. Maybe I should just bow out.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:52 PM
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Your definitions of disability are the same. Your definitions of normal are different.

Second verse, same as the first, then; and it again puts pressure on the advocate of the nonstandard definition to say what makes the trait picked out as not part of what goes into normality such.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:55 PM
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this other thread is really something.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:55 PM
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I'm not going to look at it because I can't remember it.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:56 PM
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I'm glad I'm not in the thread linked in 330. I always thought the Deaf Culture take on deafness-as-non-disability was more of a rhetorical thing, and was specifically making a point about language instruction. Like, from the perspective of language instruction, acquisition, and learning, deafness is no more of a disability than growing up in (say) Japan: you don't speak or understand English.

If, on the other hand, it's a more literal thing, then I'm a little bummed, because (being partly deaf and not knowing sign language) I appear to be in the disability valley, whereas if I had perfect hearing and spoke sign language natively, I would be doubly-abled and some sort of superman.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 4:58 PM
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I don't understand what you want me to say in response, here. It's not a position I believe. Some other people do, even if you think it's an illogical position.

Most people (apparently including you) haven't thought about exactly what they mean by "disability" very much at all, except to be glad they don't have one. People with disabilities, who identify themselves as such, think about the word a lot. People who say to themselves "I am Normal" don't.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:01 PM
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378 to nosflow


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:01 PM
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I thought the height and eyesight examples were useful -- what you get from the canonical DC advocate Cecily's describing is a sense that there is a basic sense of being "disabled" that goes something like: you're disabled if you lack some normal ability that leaves you at a disadvantage, and it totally sucks, man, and who would want to be that? Then the DC person says, now, you think being deaf meets that definition. But it doesn't! I'm not at a disadvantage, and I am not a "disabled" person, that's just absurd.

There's a similar thing where some people with autistic spectrum disorders, or their parents, are very invested in the notion that autism is NOT a disability or a disorder -- how dare you taint them with that brush! -- it's just different.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:02 PM
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I'm aware you don't hold the position, but you obviously know more about it than I do. I'm not asking you to defend it, I just thought that its advocates had a more theoretically involved position than (as I gather) they do. That's all! And I enjoy expressing my surprise at the actual state of affairs vehemently and repeatedly.

except to be glad they don't have one

Snippy!


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:05 PM
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I always thought the Deaf Culture take on deafness-as-non-disability was more of a rhetorical thing, and was specifically making a point about language instruction. Like, from the perspective of language instruction, acquisition, and learning, deafness is no more of a disability than growing up in (say) Japan: you don't speak or understand English.

There is a whole range of takes on it, for extra fun.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:05 PM
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382: internecine debate in Deaf Culture? Fie you say!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:08 PM
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I know I should be capitalizing Deaf in this instance, but can't for the life of me figure out if I should be Capitalizing Culture.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:09 PM
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"Fie" is not "the hell", Sifu.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:10 PM
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Not that anybody's asking me, but I'm increasingly taken with the idea that Deaf advocates should argue that deafness is, in fact, a superpower.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:10 PM
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385: prescriptivist. That usage returns a whole five hits on google.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:11 PM
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I capitalize D when I'm talking about the Deaf Culture people who like their name to be capitalized. I don't capitalize it when I am talking about other (or unspecified) people who can't hear.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:12 PM
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369: The idea that anyone needs to be all up in arms insisting that they are not disabled is dumb, and also really insulting to everyone else who is (differently) disabled.

371: Disability is "not having all of the abilities that someone normally has".

While neb's 366 is dear, I meant something substantive in 364. For example, I have a seizure disorder. I consider it a condition: it conditions my life (it has ruled out having children, for example).

The language of abilities (or lack thereof) doesn't serve as well as a language of conditions, to my mind. People's lives are conditioned in various ways.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:13 PM
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There are actual demonstrated benefits to being Deaf. Spatial cognition is improved in native signers, you have a happier and more fulfilling life as a senior citizen, and you don't have to listen to screaming babies on airplanes. Ever.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:14 PM
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389: I don't even SEE color.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:16 PM
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Question!

Does Evelyn Glennie experience the screams of babies?

(Someone once argued to me, I think facetiously but I'm not sure, that Glennie wasn't the first 20thC full-time percussion solois, on the grounds that the piano is a percussion instrument.)


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:17 PM
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390: and your pronouns are way awesomer than other people's pronouns!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:17 PM
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Thank you!


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:22 PM
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Shorter 381: I'm a little bitch.


Posted by: David | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:24 PM
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391: You're colorblind? We normals assume you get on with life in any case.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:25 PM
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I do my best. I smile bravely through the tears. I try very hard to keep up with the others, and not to be too disappointed when I can't.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:27 PM
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I'm tempted here to get involved in this discussion [having spent the best part of a decade developing a theory of disease and disability], but I expect I'd just end up swearing a lot.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:27 PM
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399

You could just post your dissertation in a series of comments.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:28 PM
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re: 399

That'd be cruel and unusual punishment.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:32 PM
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397: I know, right? It can suck to be differently conditioned.

ttaM should totally contribute. We need more theory.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:36 PM
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I think we used to have a lot more randomly speculative conversations without any evidence, which is why the analogy ban had to be instituted.

Wait, are you saying that was a bad thing. That was (part of) what made unfogged great (despite occasional unforced errors).

Your definitions of disability are the same. Your definitions of normal are different.

It occurs to me that there are any number of ways in which I don't maximize my personal capabilities.

Imagine that I was talking to Megan and she mentioned, casually, that she thinks that normal people can dead lift their body weight, and that anybody who can't is, functionally, handicapped. But, says she, thankfully for most people that's a handicap that can be easily overcome with some training.

In that hypothetical conversation I would have to concede that, while I don't think of the ability to dead lift one's body weight as part of the definition of "normal" I couldn't say that Megan would be misguided or wrong for thinking differently.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:38 PM
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(despite occasional unforced errors)

Your definition of "occasional" is different from mine.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:41 PM
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397: Such an inspiring personal story. If only it could be represented through a movie or a song or a something. Has "The Quiet Black and White Rainbow" already been taken for a title?


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:46 PM
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380 There's a similar thing where some people with autistic spectrum disorders, or their parents, are very invested in the notion that autism is NOT a disability or a disorder -- how dare you taint them with that brush! -- it's just different.

This one is even more troublesome because, at least from my privileged neurotypical perspective, there are people with autistic spectrum disorders for whom it really isn't much of a disorder, and there are some for whom it is clearly a devastating illness that more or less obliterates their ability to function in society. I once spent a couple of days having an argument somewhere on LJ with one of the former (someone with Asperger's who was perfectly able to carry out a sustained and intelligent argument on the internet) about whether, if it were possible to treat the latter (people with autism who have extreme difficulty functioning in society) to render them more neurotypical, it should be done. To me it was an obvious yes, as people with extreme forms of the disorder suffer and can't negotiate the world on their own; to her this was a direct attack on her unusual way of experiencing the world, and her affinity for people with autism led her to insist that they are not truly disabled, just cognitively different. I don't think either of us budged in our opinion.

One thing that strikes me here is that for many cognitive disorders -- depression, OCD -- there's a similar continuum, and yet we don't encounter, say, people with a mild form of OCD railing against medication of those for whom it is a serious obstacle to getting by in their daily lives. I can't quite put my finger on the distinction that makes autism-spectrum disorders more likely to elicit these sorts of defensive responses.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:46 PM
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This one is even more troublesome because, at least from my privileged neurotypical perspective, there are people with autistic spectrum disorders for whom it really isn't much of a disorder, and there are some for whom it is clearly a devastating illness that more or less obliterates their ability to function in society.

Yeah, it's genuinely thorny.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:51 PM
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Further to 405's I can't quite put my finger on the distinction that makes autism-spectrum disorders more likely to elicit these sorts of defensive responses.

Although maybe that distinction is just that those far along on the autism spectrum are unable to articulate a preference for whether or not they should be treated. But I'm not fully convinced by this; it's possible, for instance, for someone with severe depression to express unwillingness to have it treated, but I don't think anyone would view it as morally wrong or an exercise of neurotypical privilege to try to push a depressed person to seek treatment.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:53 PM
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There are some bipolar disorder groups who also advocate against medical treatment, FWIW.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:53 PM
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I think it's correlated with whether you consider "people on a certain spectrum of disability" to be your primary social group, or you consider yourself to be on the end of a spectrum but primarily affiliated with those not on it.

To my knowledge, people with OCD have generally stayed in gen pop, while people with Aspbergers often felt unwelcome and so shifted their allegiance to the spectrum.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:54 PM
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407: shizophrenics are very often unwilling to self-medicate, right? That seems related.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:55 PM
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normal people can dead lift their body weight cars.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:57 PM
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Megan!

I failed miserably all week to put your box in the mail. Perhaps this week will be an improvement. We must hope.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 5:59 PM
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409 makes a lot of sense.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:00 PM
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Megan, happy birthday (belated).


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:04 PM
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Miss Mess! I am hoping!

(I am also out the door to go on a puddle walk.)


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:04 PM
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409, 410 sound kind of like symptoms.

||

Megan, I saw a documentary about a rainmaker last night. Look for it: Next Year Country. Also saw Salt -- Jesus, what a movie.

|>


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:05 PM
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Hm. Symptoms of what?


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:08 PM
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To my knowledge, people with OCD have generally stayed in gen pop, while people with Aspbergers often felt unwelcome and so shifted their allegiance to the spectrum

This seems right. It seems fair to say that definitions of normalcy shift along with changing senses of what counts as functionality. The ADA seems to have gone a long way toward exactly its goal: to bring more differently-abled people into the general population. (In my own case, we all know that the dreaded epilepsy was considered a scourge for a very long time, still is frightening to many to some extent, and no, one doesn't talk about it much.)

And of course being black is considered increasingly normal.

I might ban myself for analogy foolery.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:11 PM
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410 doesn't quite work. Schizophrenics go off their meds because a)schizophrenia meds can have serious side effects (often severe weight gain or sedation) and b)they're crazy in the first place. I'm sure there are schizophrenics that are inclined to treat their condition as an asset, but a decision to discontinue medication would be overdetermined.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:22 PM
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It isn't beside the point that basically pretty much everyone is getting pathologized in some way or another because it benefits the pharm industry to do so. Having periods can be cured. Looking older can be cured. Gradually losing libido can be cured. Shyness? Take drugs. Anxiety? Take drugs. All these things are genuinely reductive of quality of life as it might be defined according to some perfect standard of "normal" that pretty much no one actually fits. One could ask that we be a little more flexible, as a society, to people with the misfortune of having been born female, socially awkward, prone to human aging, etc., such that management of less-than-"optimal" experiences of life would not be a burden. Medicating away life experience to the point that the culture becomes even more obsessed with the pretense of "normalcy" is a short-term cure that creates long-term problems, and a less tolerant society.

So for people who are struggling with experiences of life that really are beyond the experience of many others, especially those who pretend there is this thing called "normal" that makes sense, the desire to medicate or politically organize against medication (or whatever "treatment") is a lot more real and immediate.

What I think we have to figure out is how to construct a society in which we can recognize that "normal" is a null set, and learn how to interact with a wider variety of people with various experiences, without, in the meanwhile, denying the help that may be offered by management and treatment.

Does that make sense? I guess I'm thinking, in part, of a student I had who was really suffering in one of my courses, despite being a remarkably brilliant young woman, because, according to the dean, she'd been homeschooled and never really learned to deal with being autistic in public. She was often massively anxious, volatile, unable to follow conversations or stay in her seat, prone to weeping or making noises, not able to make eye contact--basically, all the other students were freaked out by her. OTOH, I don't think she'd ever conceived of herself as someone with a "disability," and she held herself to the same standards everyone else does, throwing herself into material and situations that upset her horribly over and over again. I kept thinking, damn, someone needs to help this woman learn how to manage her life as an autistic person. But then I'd think, what would she have not participated in and been a part of if she were always thinking of herself as a person with a disability? That's not a dilemma for me to have an opinion about. My job was to create an environment where she felt safe and valued.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:29 PM
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Wait, are you saying that was a bad thing. That was (part of) what made unfogged great (despite occasional unforced errors).

Gahhh. It's all fun and games until it comes to a topic you actually know something about. Then it's somewhere between gnashing of teeth and extreme rolling of eyes, depending on how seriously you're taking things that day. (Why, hello there foreign language pedagogy thread!)


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:31 PM
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b)they're crazy in the first place

That's a big, hairy b right there.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:32 PM
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BTW, I'm not in any way saying that people shouldn't medicate or seek treatment for anything. But I do wish we lived in a world in which, if someone who could survive and function without medication, and wanted to, could do so without being judged as outside acceptable society. I have anxiety, and don't take meds, mostly because I react really really poorly to almost all medication, but I don't judge those who do. You have to do what you have to do to get along. And if you're not around caring people who can make space for your individual weirdnesses, you've got to do it.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:36 PM
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One could ask that we be a little more flexible, as a society, to people with the misfortune of having been born female, socially awkward, prone to human aging, etc., such that management of less-than-"optimal" experiences of life would not be a burden. Medicating away life experience to the point that the culture becomes even more obsessed with the pretense of "normalcy" is a short-term cure that creates long-term problems, and a less tolerant society.

OTOH, the current approach is probably better than what we had before, which was basically "Don't fit? Then you don't exist."


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:38 PM
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Could you say that a person has a disability if their thing isn't accomodated by mainstream society, and a feature if it is?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:39 PM
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|| Since I entirely lack any decent google-fu, I need some help. Bave made some recommendations about which works by Freud I might like to read. I can't figure out how to find this in the archives. Help, please!

|>


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:43 PM
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Did you try emailing bave?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:45 PM
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Bave is on his way to my apt right now. I'll ask him to check the thread.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:47 PM
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Thanks, NickS. I'll look for those, CCarp.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:48 PM
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You can start with Interpretation of Dreams in the mean time. I frikkin' love that book. Not only is it a great text about narrative, you also just get so much of Freud's personality. He is so, so excited to nonchalantly tell you about his his friend's mistress's abortion.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:50 PM
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426: Maybe this one?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:51 PM
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That's a very sensible suggestion, neb. It's pissing me off no end that google is sucking so bad.

Could somebody send me Bave's e-mail address? His old blog seems to be password protected.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:52 PM
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Lemme plump for Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality and Beyond the Pleasure Principle.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:53 PM
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essear gets it right, I think. But I'm hardly a Freud expert. (I just read In the Freud Archives, which was totes fun.)

-- Bave at AWB's place


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:57 PM
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I'll second Blume on TIoD (Anna Fweud! Stwawbewwies!) and suggest Dora, because, heck,it's Dora and you must, even if you'll end up yelling at the book a lot.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:58 PM
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Yes, essear found the right thread.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 6:58 PM
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I'll read Dora and then maybe the IofD. Unfortunately, those aren't the two Freud books available on Project Gutenberg.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:01 PM
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Stwawbewwies!

So Carol Channing was making a sophisticated reference to Freud. I wouldn't have guessed.


Posted by: Standpipe Bridgeplate | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:02 PM
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Blume is convincing me that I've always read Freud wrong, since I thought of him as a scientist and tried to evaluate whether his concepts had any validity or not (not really, by and large). I should go back and see about that.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:04 PM
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You can find IofD online, or bits and pieces of it anyway.


Posted by: Standpipe Bridgeplate | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:09 PM
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Freud is more interesting to read on a reread as an historical phenomenon. A moment, if you will. And a turn.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:19 PM
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shizophrenics are very often unwilling to self-medicate, right?

Unfortunately, the unwillingness often doesn't extend to non traditional meds like crack.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:21 PM
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442: in their defense, it's likely to be a hell of a lot more fun than antipsychotics.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:22 PM
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439: She's right. It's quite an inspirational story, really. It just shows that with talent, confidence, and an adequate pharmaceutical supply anyone can insinuate their neuroses (gah!) into Western civilization.

Also, have any Austrians ever done anything useful? I can't think of much. There's Kafka I suppose, but they seem a rather impractical nation.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:28 PM
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It isn't beside the point that basically pretty much everyone is getting pathologized in some way or another because it benefits the pharm industry to do so.

Since the current tendency is to insist that various conditions are not diseases but a normal part of human diversity, I would like to go ahead and speak up for pathologizing depression. Depression sucks ass. It is not a healthy part of the human condition. You should not stay off your meds in order to stay true to your identity as a person paralyzed by sorrow and anhedonia.

Of course, there really wasn't much danger of people normalizing depression. the standard alternative to viewing depression as a disease is to view it as a character flaw. The problem is that for most aspects of the human condition, the only available categories are "character flaw" "disease" and "normal." Of the lot, "disease" is very often the most constructive, because no one tries to improve on "normal" and character flaws are to be punished.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:29 PM
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444.2: fie, you say?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:30 PM
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Those Oesterreichers make awesome eaux de vie. And cheesy pancakes.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:31 PM
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I think Mozart was Austrian.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:33 PM
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Blume is convincing me that I've always read Freud wrong, since I thought of him as a scientist and tried to evaluate whether his concepts had any validity or not (not really, by and large). I should go back and see about that.

I had a similar problem.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:33 PM
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These guys.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:33 PM
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439: but instead, you now think …? I haven't any Freud in a while, but that's still what I thought.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:35 PM
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But I repeat myself.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:35 PM
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Though I think I never mentioned here the additional data point that the lecturer's wife was a psychoanalyst. Can't question the validity of what pays your bills, I suppose.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:38 PM
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In the IofD and Dora, Freud is the ultimate unreliable narrator, but one that you can't help but find compelling, because of his incredible intelligence and outrageous ego.


Also, have any Austrians ever done anything useful?

Not a big classical music fan, eh?


There's Kafka I suppose, but they seem a rather impractical nation.

Kafka did really practical stuff! In his job at the Worker's Accident Insurance Institute, he suggested improvements to lathe shafts that reduced injuries by a significant amount. He also helped institute rules prohibiting drinking and smoking in workplaces around explosives.
(Leaving aside the question of whether we could call Kafka Austrian.)


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:38 PM
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Aside from the "not really, by and large", though I'm pretty undecided about that. I meant, rather, reading him as someone at least attempting to do something scientific, elaborating his theories in response to what was perceived as new data, etc.

IIRC, no less than Jonathan Le/r is responsible for my thinking this. Thus, e.g., the need to move beyond the pleasure principle in the face of post–great war trauma.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:39 PM
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Also, have any Austrians ever done anything useful?

There's always Hedy Lamarr's invention of frequency-hopping.

</Emerson>


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:40 PM
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I don't think anyone would view it as morally wrong or an exercise of neurotypical privilege to try to push a depressed person to seek treatment

I think there are elements of the right to die movement who are an inch away from saying you should honor a depressive's suicide wish out of respect for their autonomy.

Most states which allow for a physician assisted suicide have provisions that rule suicide out for the depressed, but there is a lot of play in what counts as depression.

The recent move in the Netherlands to allow euthanasia for people over 70 who report that they are "tired of living" is genuinely alarming to me.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:41 PM
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The Russian ice dancers. OMG.


Posted by: Standpipe Bridgeplate | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:44 PM
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455: I slot Freud with Minsky, Chomsky and (plausibly, although I'll get way out of my depth instantly if I try to argue this) Aristotle in the category of "genuinely brilliant thinkers who created whole fields of inquiry while simultaneously getting everything wrong".


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:44 PM
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One of the weird things about the ADA was that it wasn't the culmination of a public struggle for rights/recognition/accommodation.

All I meant is that issues like what you describe in 329 are out in the open in a way that internal conflicts among, say, black civil rights movementarians were not.

I'm certainly not an expert on either struggle, but based on what I know I'm pretty sure both of the above statements aren't accurate.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:45 PM
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I wonder if 459 is idiotic? History will judge.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:46 PM
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My grandmother, who died at very close to 105, reported that she was pretty much waiting to die for at least the last five years of my life. I don't think she was depressed.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:46 PM
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Leaving aside the question of whether we could call Kafka Austrian.

No.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:47 PM
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462 presents the eerie possibility that nosflow is speaking to us from the other side.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:48 PM
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462 to 457.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:48 PM
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455: I slot Freud with Minsky, Chomsky and (plausibly, although I'll get way out of my depth instantly if I try to argue this) Aristotle in the category of "genuinely brilliant thinkers who created whole fields of inquiry while simultaneously getting everything wrong".

I kind of feel like this is more about charisma than brilliance.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:48 PM
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||

This is a pretty great hockey game.

|>


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:49 PM
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459: Aristotle certainly fits that category. The others, I'm not so sure about.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:49 PM
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the last five years of my life

Don't do it, neb! You could have many fruitful years ahead of you!


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:49 PM
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Er, her life.

I kind of feel like this is more about charisma than brilliance.

What, even Aristotle's manuscripts?

Besides, A got a lot right.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:50 PM
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Rob has never been more wrong.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:50 PM
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467: HOLY SHIT MY HEAD IS EXPLODING.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:50 PM
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||

"Duo" backwards is "oud". Oud … duo. Think about it.

|>


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:51 PM
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472 to 473.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:52 PM
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472: right? right? I know, right?!

Wow.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:52 PM
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Not that kind of oud.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:52 PM
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471: Sadly, I have. I probably will be again, too.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:53 PM
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Hal B. Oud Duo: Blah!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:54 PM
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461, 459: I'd have left Aristotle out of it.

Freud offered a narrative, really, that was deeply compelling for generations, and inflected everything from film to child-raising to the visual arts and literature. It doesn't really work to say that he just got things wrong: our thinking now is infused with his thinking in a variety of ways.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:55 PM
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Ryan Miller was for the past 20 minutes the hardest working man in the world.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:56 PM
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I'm certainly not an expert on either struggle, but based on what I know I'm pretty sure both of the above statements aren't accurate.

Talking Wheelchair Blues.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:56 PM
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That that was Freud's effect does not mean that that's what he offered.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:56 PM
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478: A halb duo is just one.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:56 PM
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Was Freud ever as orange as Bob Costas is right now?


Posted by: Standpipe Bridgeplate | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:59 PM
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Further to 481, and related to AWB's comment above, I like the end of that song:

Anyway, i look at it this way -- / In fifty years you'll be in worse shape than i am now. / See, we're all the same, this human race. / Some of us are called disabled. and the rest-- / Well, the rest of you are just temporarily able-bodied."

Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 7:59 PM
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So am I wrong to think that Aristotle basically invented systematic biology and logic as a discipline separate from rhetoric?


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:01 PM
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482: Change the tense of my statement, then: Freud [his writings] offer a narrative.

I feel on the verge of the same kind of argument a friend insists on every six months ago about, like, just how stupid was Jung or what, right?

Well, no, not exactly.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:02 PM
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What makes you think that Aristotle got everything wrong in logic and biology?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:03 PM
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Was Freud ever as Fred Rogers as Chris Collinsworth is right now?


Posted by: Standpipe Bridgeplate | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:03 PM
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Was Freud ever as orange as Bob Costas is right now?

Are you sure that's not just your reception?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:03 PM
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It's very un-PC and anti-psych rehab to talk about "schizophrenics," Sifu. You're supposed to say "people who have experienced schizophrenia" or "people who have been diagnosed with schizophrenia."

Likewise, one is not supposed to say "I'm bipolar," because that would be identifying one's whole self with a disease. So, instead you're supposed to say, "I have bipolar disorder
."


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:05 PM
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488: Well, not everything.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:05 PM
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Yes, I'm sure. Compare Costas with Collinsworth and Michaels on the split screen. Someone in the makeup department hates him bad.


Posted by: Standpipe Bridgeplate | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:05 PM
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Have you discovered that, for instance, with a major premise "As are B" and the minor premise "this is an A", you can't infer "this is B"?

Likewise, one is not supposed to say "I'm bipolar," because that would be identifying one's whole self with a disease.

This is why I always say "I have blue eyes" and never "I'm blue-eyed".


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:05 PM
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Similarly, one must never say "I am happy". Rather, "I am presently experiencing happiness".


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:06 PM
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I will presently apologize to neb for my abuse of the word "presently".


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:07 PM
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I am presently experiencing muppet-esque sportscasters.


Posted by: Standpipe Bridgeplate | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:08 PM
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460: The second assertion is purely a historical impression - I don't think that an inattentive white in 1963 would have known much about, say, the black nationalist strain in the civil rights movement. But I wasn't there, so I don't know.

As for the ADA, I'm using the handy heuristic of "did I know anything was happening?" And the answer is, "No." I found out about the ADA (which passed when I was a young adult) solely because it was going to have a massive impact on my future profession. I was a reasonably attentive teen/young adult - I could have told you about ACT UP and AIDS, about the ERA, and a fair amount about ongoing black civil rights issues. I'm not sure I could have told you a single thing about disability rights activism.

Obviously the ADA came from somewhere - Congress doesn't pass sweeping laws ex nihilo - but I can't come up with a definition of "public struggle" that translates to "person who reads the paper (with a focus on national, political, and opinion news) every single day for 4 years is unaware of it."

This is not an attempt to denigrate the work disability rights activists did - as I said, and Ned reinforced, it's a media problem, not a failure of activism - but an observation of what actually happened. The one (big) thing that I'll concede is a strong east coast bias - if it wasn't getting significant coverage in the NYT, but was a big story in LA, I would have missed it.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:10 PM
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I don't think that an inattentive white in 1963 would have known much about, say, the black nationalist strain in the civil rights movement.

Um, Malcolm X?


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:15 PM
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Yes?


Posted by: Malcolm X | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:17 PM
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You can't describe somebody as diabetic either, essear.

I deal with this all the time in my work, essear. I know one guy who absolutely refuses to do it. There's also the annoying usage of the word "consumer" to describe mentally ill people.

It takes a lot of restraint for me to refrain from making those kinds of comments.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:19 PM
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Yes, I'm sure. Compare Costas with Collinsworth and Michaels on the split screen

Okay, sweetheart. Costas always looks like that. I think he likes it.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:20 PM
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There's also the annoying usage of the word "consumer" to describe mentally ill people.

Several question marks in a row?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:21 PM
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ORANGE


Posted by: Standpipe Bridgeplate | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:21 PM
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I mean, I think he'd like to be wearing a cravat, but that might be just too much.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:21 PM
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I suppose saying that whites might have been aware - and/or afraid of - people like Malcolm X is not to say that they would have known much about the black nationalist strain in the Civil Rights Movement.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:21 PM
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There are several comments above which have implicit or explicit suggestions for things that I should do, think, or say. I'm going to go ahead and ignore all of them, and people shouldn't be offended.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:22 PM
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There's also the annoying usage of the word "consumer" to describe mentally ill people.

Specifically those mentally ill people who are availing themselves of the particular services on offer, one presumes, as opposed to a simple substitution for every circumstance where one might use the phrase "mentally ill person."


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:25 PM
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"My client deserves leniency in his sentencing because he is a consumer."


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:27 PM
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508: Yes, but it's because the word "patient" is thought to be too pejorative. Frankly, I find the term really offensive, because it implicitly compares obtaining mental heath treatment with shopping. It makes me think of Wal-Mart.

Michael Sandel put something out a while ago about how we never think of ourselves as citizens, merely about whether something is good for the consumer. Maybe participant would be a better word. I refuse to call myself a consumer.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:29 PM
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How the fuck is "patient" pejorative? If I go to the doctor because I am, I don't know, in possession of GI distress, I'm a patient. Undergoing care. This is like, I don't know, Munchausen by proxy, for hypersensitivity to imagined slights.

It used to really piss me off when transit agencies, it must have been the CTA at the time, referred to riders as "consumers" or perhaps "customers". It's a public fucking agency.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:33 PM
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Costas *does not* always look like that. I rode the Acela next to him last month and he was not orange. He was teeny and blackturtlenecked, but not orange.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:33 PM
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Oh, ha, link in 511 NSFW; I forgot about that.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:34 PM
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Yes, the word "consumer" is generally gross all around. Consumer of X thing one actually consumes, sure. I'm a consumer of natural resources, ice cream, and souls. (Nyam, nyam, nyam.) "Consumer" as identity, horrid.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:34 PM
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It took Michael Sandel to say that?

What's wrong with "client" for people in the mental health system? This shift is incredibly strange to me. Really, what was wrong with "client" that a change to "consumer" occurred?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:36 PM
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Instead of calling someone a consumer, you should say that he or she has consumption.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:36 PM
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Costas *does not* always look like that.

He does on the teevee. Neener, neener.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:39 PM
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Oh, shit. 516 is funny.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:40 PM
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Client isn't totally gone. It's just that over time, because it was associated with poor people, it got to be negative.

Among higher-end types, some therapists refer to people as clients, other more medically-oriented people talk about patients.

I guess the problem with the word patient is that there's a stigma attached to the phrase "mental patient." That just further ghettoizes mental illness, because nobody ever talks about "consumers of cardiac services." The field of psych rehabilitation is not an intellectually rigorous or consistent one. I think that this is true of most non-academic areas, and trying not to point that out to people is one of my greatest challenges.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:41 PM
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I'm told that the president of my college once tried to get the teachers to refer to the students as "customers." It didn't go over well.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 8:55 PM
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Desiring to be normal strikes me as a disability. ('Normal' as in statistically most frequent, not as in relation to the good, ideal, etc.)


Posted by: currence | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 9:23 PM
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277: (sorry, I know this subthread is dead, but I spent 8 hours drinking last night, so I'm just picking it up again) No, of course, there's an essential difference between that level of lower-UMC security and what the average person deals with in their life. But my point was that the real trustafarians -- people who actually skate through life without ever having to work or worry about healthcare or what not -- are an order of magnitude or two more secure than this composite. To a great extent, I've had the wind at my back my whole life too -- intellectual parents, caring and supportive family structure, middle-class expectations, white, male etc. -- but not so much that I've ever been able to, for instance, fuck off to Europe on a whim and not worry about what happens when I get back. The less pleasant side of my composite backstory for 99 is that she's probably bailed on at least 3 living situations owing her working- and lower-middle class roommates for unpaid utilities, that she functions as a kind of drag on the bike-punk scene, using resources but putting very little back in, that she presumes on a lot of her acquaintances to provide her with these little props to her lifestyle essentially for free; obviously, people like that aren't exactly history's greatest monsters, but they're pretty superfluous to any kind of forward movement.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 10:02 PM
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522 was me, obv.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 02-21-10 10:04 PM
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You can't describe somebody as diabetic either, essear.

I actually pay a fair amount of attention to this myself when talking to others, and tend to say "I'm diabetic" or "I have Type II diabetes" rather than "I'm *a* diabetic", precisely because the latter does make it feel like the disease is defining me, rather than being one aspect of who I am.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 12:41 AM
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522: The richest trustafarian I ever knew actually rescued poorer housemates, including me. ...But she was also very, very plain and smart as a whip.

Hypothesis: beauty is even more toxic than money.

Refrain: I'm so happy I'm a beta!


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 12:48 AM
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In the IofD and Dora, Freud is the ultimate unreliable narrator, but one that you can't help but find compelling,

I felt compelled not to read any more Freud. Isn't there a part of Dora where he says something like, she didn't actually say X, but surely she would have if she hadn't been holding back, so let's just say she said X anyway, as it surely must be something she should have mentioned, and now I will tell you what X says about her? It might have been in a footnote, or a figment of my faulty memory.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 3:15 AM
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As for the hockey game, the crowds in downtown became subdued very quickly after the empty net goal. Later on some people were chanting "USA go away" and "you got lucky." Most people, if chanting as they walked around, were just chanting "Ca-na-da", not in response to anything in particular. I'm attending curling this afternoon.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 3:21 AM
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re: 526

Yeah, I don't think anyone thinks Freud's accounts are reliable. That doesn't mean that the sort of psychodynamic model he devised isn't interesting, though.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 3:36 AM
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457: The recent move in the Netherlands to allow euthanasia for people over 70 who report that they are "tired of living" is genuinely alarming to me.

Wait, what now? There are fairly strict euthanasia laws over here and they require a lot more than somebody being tired of living to not be prosecuted for murder.

(There was a documentary recently about a specific woman who wanted to die while nothing was wrong with her other than her age, but that had nothing to dow ith policy changes.)


Posted by: Martin Wisse | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 4:43 AM
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529: Huh. I've definitely seen references to such a change in Netherlands euthanasia policy elsewhere recently -- if it's not true, someone should be debunking it.

I'll try to remember where I saw it.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 5:58 AM
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"genuinely brilliant thinkers who created whole fields of inquiry while simultaneously getting everything wrong"

This is a fun (and possibly useful) category for modern thinkers, but if you include Aristotle you have to include pretty much every natural philosopher before Francis Bacon, so it gets full quite fast.


Posted by: OFE | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 6:07 AM
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genuinely brilliant thinkers who created whole fields of inquiry while simultaneously getting everything wrong

Sigmund Freud
Talcott Parsons

Honorable mention: Emil Durkheim, Friedrich von Hayek.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 6:23 AM
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I've learned so much from this thread. For example, deaf girls are easy. Thank you, Unfogged.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 6:25 AM
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Well, if one is being strict about one's definition of 'wrong', the vast majority of natural philosophers/scientists after Bacon, too.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 6:25 AM
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What field of inquiry did Hayek create? Implausible chains of consequence that lead to fascism? Road to Serfdom may be the first example of Godwin's Law avant la lettre.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 6:28 AM
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What field of inquiry did Hayek create?

Crucial economic role of tacit, dispersed knowledge, and the role of price signals in eliciting the same. Laid the groundwork for a great deal of subsequent work in financial economics. I would argue that Spence and Stiglitz owe Hayek a great debt as well, even as they showed the limits of his theory.


Posted by: KR | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 6:37 AM
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534. Come on, you know what he means.


Posted by: OFE | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 6:37 AM
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Further to 536: I can only hope that D-Squared is taking the day off today, because I am neither prepared nor competent to defend the preceding against rebuttal from anyone truly knowledgeable on the subject.


Posted by: KR | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 6:39 AM
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529: Huh. I've definitely seen references to such a change in Netherlands euthanasia policy elsewhere recently -- if it's not true, someone should be debunking it.

I'll try to remember where I saw it.

Maybe it was in the context of a discussion of those death panels that they have over there.


Posted by: S. Palin | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 6:41 AM
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Francis Galton (sometimes).


Posted by: OFE | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 7:01 AM
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Gottlob Frege, quite famously.

536 is more or less right, although I would substitute "capital theory" for "financial economics".


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 7:38 AM
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Good grief. We might as well toss in Newton while we're at it.


Posted by: Standpipe Bridgeplate | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 7:43 AM
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I don't think Hayek really did create any of those fields. While people like to invoke Hayek as cover for what functions as a (slightly) center-left critique of markets. No one has ever written down a robust model where price signals work at all the way that Hayek suggested. If you believe the evidence of those models, they suggest that pretty much markets don't work, and that the price system will break down rather than integrate dispersed information. Information economics is like a great big Christmas present to technocratic liberalism.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 7:48 AM
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I guess that you can make the Hayek/Freud analogy work, in that the conclusions of the theory are the exactly opposite of what Hayek claimed.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 7:51 AM
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Information economics is like a great big Christmas present to technocratic liberalism.

As a technocratic liberal, I say "Ho ho ho!"


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 8:09 AM
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530: were you thinking "Switzerland" instead of "Netherlands"?


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 8:10 AM
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My favorite thing about Freud (or, really, Freudian psychology) is all the mid-20thC fiction written on the basis of an uncritical belief that a simplistic version of Freudian psychology is absolutely true. People uncovering repressed traumas and being instantly healed of neuroses -- there are a couple of Hitchcock movies, Marnie, and one with skiing, and more novels than I can remember.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 8:10 AM
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one with skiing

That would be Spellbound, which I'm fond of despite its flaws. Hitchcock didn't uncritically believe the psychoanalysis bits, but the film's producer (David O. Selznick) did, so they clashed over it. Selznick cut a lot of the DalĂ­ sequence, unfortunately.

Marnie was less memorable, for me. Maybe I've repressed it.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 8:36 AM
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Sean Connery, and I'm blanking on the female star's name, but she was very famous. She's a thief, and poses under a series of false identities, and IIRC it's all about sexual repression which Connery cures in a fashion that looks unfortunately non-consensual to a present-day viewer. But I may be garbling the plot.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 8:48 AM
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I just looked at Akerlof's "Market for Lemons" (Wikipedia has a link to it), and it doesn't seem to mention Hayek. I don't know the earliest Stiglitz information paper, but Stiglitz and Weiss "Credit Rationing in Markets with Incomplete Information" doesn't mention Hayek. Spence's "Job Market Signaling" doesn't mention Hayek, but is pretty lacking in the references department.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 8:57 AM
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I sort-of liked the movie The Prince of Tides just because the psychology in it was so retro-Freudian. I saw the movie The Seven-Percent Solution when I was a teenager. I wonder if I saw it as an adult I would roll my eyes.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 8:58 AM
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549: Tippie Hedren: mother of Melanie Griffith and noted ornithologist!


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 9:02 AM
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That's it -- I was thinking Tippi Hedren, but rejected her because she was in The Birds, and I thought I was confusing them. Wasn't she the woman in The Hustler, too? Love that movie.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 9:08 AM
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Speaking of Alfred Hitchcock, I watched "To Catch a Thief" last night and it was basically "Ocean's (some number below 11)". Totally silly. Not good.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 9:09 AM
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According to Tippi's WP page, she is the reason there are so many Vietnamese nail salons. In 1975, she visited some refugee camps in Vietnam with her manicurist and had her teach them how to do nails, and then helped them find places in the US.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 9:22 AM
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516 is seriously funny.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 9:32 AM
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My favorite thing about Freud (or, really, Freudian psychology) is all the mid-20thC fiction written on the basis of an uncritical belief that a simplistic version of Freudian psychology is absolutely true. People uncovering repressed traumas and being instantly healed of neuroses -- there are a couple of Hitchcock movies, Marnie, and one with skiing, and more novels than I can remember.

I took this absolutely heinous comp lit class a few years ago--known to all as "the Freud class", it is taught in alternating terms by a bizarre, manic, brilliant father-obsessed scholar and by an unspecified adjunct. I drew the adjunct. And I certainly don't mean to make light of adjunctification, but there was a reason why this guy wasn't tenure track. Holy crap, we read almost nothing but Patricia Highsmith, which we interpreted with an absolute kathunk-kathunk literalness--her characters, they are sick because of their eeevvilll possessive mothers, who they murder! Or because they are sexually repressed! The slugs, they symbolize sexuality!

Did we read critics of Freud? We did not. Did we read pre-Freudian alienists? We did not. Did we read anything a-tall to suggest that Freud was a person of his times and that the upper middle-classes in pre-WWI Vienna were not actually proxies for all human beings everywhere? Of course not!

We also watched, I think, Strangers On A Train and wrote boring, literal Freudian interpretations.

In fairness, my somewhat disproportionate anger and resentment at the content of the class forced me to do some serious and productive thinking about my own anxieties about academic failure, snobbery-as-cover-for-insecurity, etc.

Also, I have a recurring anxiety dream in which I do not know my grade for that class, am afraid I've ruined my transcript, and can't seem to log in to the online grade system.


Posted by: Frowner | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 12:14 PM
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529: I should have said "movement" not "move." The idea was suggested an activist group, but isn't policy.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 12:18 PM
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Also, I have a recurring anxiety dream in which I do not know my grade for that class, am afraid I've ruined my transcript, and can't seem to log in to the online grade system.

But of course such dreams don't really have anything to do with your resentment about the class; rather, they are an expression of your wish for a closer relationship with your mother.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 12:32 PM
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I also wish for a closer relationship with your mother.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 12:36 PM
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I had a long dream about oral sex the other night. I wonder what that was really about?


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 3:11 PM
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Cigars.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 3:20 PM
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Piper Laurie was the lead actress in The Hustler. 555 is great, although it seems extraordinarily implausible.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 3:43 PM
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563: Dammit, that's right. Tippi, Piper... it's practically the same name. I'm so bad at actor/actress faces.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 3:45 PM
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I get Billie Burke confused with Billie Piper. They look pretty similar but were born 98 years apart.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 3:50 PM
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There's a Pippi Longstocking joke in there somewhere, but I can't get it to come out right.

Tippi Hedren now runs a giant preserve for aging lions and tigers from the film industry, out in a wild desert area just north of LA. Weird place.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 3:58 PM
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re: 537

I wasn't being facetious. There's a lot of discussion in philosophy of science of how we make sense of degrees of wrongness, and how we ought to understand what science does -- in terms of say, truth -- when by any strict standard the vast majority of past science was wrong. Followed by inductive arguments to the effect that we are all likely wrong, too, etc.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 02-22-10 4:02 PM
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I don't see why you couldn't be mocking and fantasising, simultaneously. Thats why you do about people cooler than yourself. Or people a little less cool, too. ok actually i think tahts just my default stance toward everything, a giggle and boner.


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 02-25-10 6:49 PM
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Tippi Hedren never made a bird movie like this.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 02-25-10 6:58 PM
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