Re: My Old High School Is Wracked By Controversy.

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the results are pretty uniformly middle class, not necessarily high income, but certainly skewed to parents with education living in nice neighborhoods

In New York, where is that going to correspond to in terms of national income percentiles? 90th?


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:18 AM
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Back in the time of ogged (pbuh), front page posts aimed to troll all the commentariat, not just a single person.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 7:04 AM
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Oh, probably down to 40th or 50th percentile or so. A good friend of mine's mother was a journalist for some small left-wing newspaper, and made bupkis -- they were really pretty seriously broke, while remaining well-educated and culturally UMC. But NYC bupkis, while it can mean genuine financial hardship, is probably a dollar amount that would go a lot further in rural Missouri.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 7:08 AM
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Quiz Bowl powerhouse Hunter College High School. It's up there with New Trier and Walter Johnson High School in Bethesda.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 7:11 AM
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a dollar amount that would go a lot further in rural Missouri

I dunno, I could eat a heck of a lot of Steak 'n Shake.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 7:12 AM
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2

Back in the time of ogged (pbuh), front page posts aimed to troll all the commentariat, not just a single person.

I don't think Steve Sailer reads Unfogged. I know you all think he's evil but it is amusing how often you post about the same thing . He was all over the SWPL business also.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 7:15 AM
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I don't think Steve Sailer reads Unfogged.

He just won't admit it.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 7:20 AM
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Kagan's brother was apparently involved in pulling off a coup against a principal who didn't want quotas

And shockingly, Mr Sailer made up a version of the story to fit his biases.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 7:23 AM
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8: I'd like to see Jeffrey Lords take on Sailer's use of the term "coup".


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 7:27 AM
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8: Oh, that is funny -- he got the reason the principal left precisely backwards (assuming he's working from the NYT story -- I don't have first hand knowledge).


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 7:43 AM
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the kids who got in would have had about the same results going anyplace else. going anyplace else that selected the same well groomed student population and left them to their own devices.

Seriously, along with small class sizes and parental support, having a good student culture is one of the most important factors in promoting real learning. The main thing St. John's has going for it isn't the old books, but the fact that every student has been self selected for valuing learning for the sake of learning.

The school is in a tricky position. If the curriculum and teachers aren't adding value, disrupting student culture could kill the one thing they have going. Adding diversity would mean carefully seeking out students from different backgrounds who value education the same way the current population does.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 8:03 AM
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A commenter at Mr. Sailer's site picked out the same sentence to make a different point:

Kagan's brother was apparently involved in pulling off a coup against a principal who didn't want quotas.

This is the money quote - everything else is irrelevant.

The sole purpose of the "Civil Rights Movement" was to allow the Bolsheviks to accumlate [even more] power [than they already possessed] in 20th Century American politics.M/i>

"Civil Rights" = bolshevik-phariseeical nihilism.

Nothing more, nothing less.



Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 8:04 AM
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bolshevik-phariseeical nihilism

Truly a phrase for the ages.

Nothing more, nothing less.

Sounds modest and reasonable to me then.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 8:06 AM
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CRAP! SAILER'S COMMENTERS ARE ON TO US!


Posted by: OPINIONATED BOLSHIVIKS | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 8:07 AM
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"bolshevik-phariseeical nihilism." would be good rollover text.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 8:10 AM
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16: The blog isn't going to just roll over to your bolshevik-phariseeical nihilism, snarkout.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 8:13 AM
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I thought anti-Semitism was meant to be dog whistled these days.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 8:14 AM
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The school is in a tricky position. If the curriculum and teachers aren't adding value, disrupting student culture could kill the one thing they have going. Adding diversity would mean carefully seeking out students from different backgrounds who value education the same way the current population does.

The thing is, I think there's a fair argument that 'the one thing they have going' isn't much -- it's like the NBA bragging about making people tall.

I do think that adding much meaningful diversity would have to include bringing in kids whose backgrounds weren't as absolutely academically supportive as the current kids, and would therefore mean that the school would have to come up with some more value to add, or it would end up with very different results.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 8:17 AM
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STOP THAT WHISTLING! I DON'T EVEN SEE JEWISHNESS.


Posted by: OPINIONATED DOG | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 8:21 AM
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having a good student culture is one of the most important factors in promoting real learning

Is that the kind of culture where the class doesn't have to be dumbed down to the modal attention span?


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 8:25 AM
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20: We all know what rob meant. Don't expect us to spoon feed it to you.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 8:36 AM
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This may be pure grass-is-greenerism, but I always had the impression of the other selective public high schools in NY as both more economically/socioculturally diverse, and as having somewhat higher academic standards in terms of what was expected of the students. IOW, I don't think there's a whole lot to lose from shaking Hunter up some.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 8:38 AM
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the impression of the other selective public high schools in NY as both more economically/socioculturally diverse,

I should hope so. If, out of all five boroughs, you can't find more than five black sixth graders who could hack it at prep school, it's because you don't want to.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 8:52 AM
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I always had the impression of the other selective public high schools in NY as both more economically/socioculturally diverse

I don't know about economic diversity, but Stuyvesant is 2% black and 3% Hispanic. Also 69% Asian and 26% white.


Posted by: Mr. Blandings | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 9:03 AM
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Yeah, I guess I'm giving them credit for economic diversity because lots of the Asian kids are going to be moderately broke children of immigrants. (Also, I think Stuy, while still heavily Asian, wasn't that heavily Asian in the 80s, which is my frame of reference.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 9:08 AM
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Bronx Science has slightly more black and Latino kids, and only 60% Asians, but not too different.

And of course the 80s are completely irrelevant.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 9:12 AM
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WHAT? THE 80s ARE TOTALLY RELEVANT.


Posted by: OPINIONATED MAX HEADROOM | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 9:17 AM
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Sixth grade? Does high school in NYC start earlier than high school everywhere else?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 9:31 AM
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Hunter is like a combination junior high and high school -- seventh through twelfth.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 9:35 AM
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The selective test you're talking about is the SHSAT, right? I'm tutoring a bunch of kids for that right now. They all want to go to Stuyvesant or Brooklyn Tech. None of them has even mentioned Hunter HS. I've got four students for the SHSAT, and half of them are minorities. Two of my students I think really need to be in a magnet school because of their intelligence and dawning contempt for their peers. The other two just really want a leg up. They don't really want to travel that far from their neighborhoods---they all live in Brooklyn---so maybe that's why they're focussing on BK Tech or Stuyvesant.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 9:57 AM
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Although I don't recall participating in the tutoring myself -- I can't recall why.

My money's on inborn genius.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 10:01 AM
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30: I got the impression that Hunter had its own special admissions test. Is that wrong?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 10:06 AM
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A note on the test, if it is the SHSAT we're talking about here. It's actually a rather interesting format, for a standardized test. There's a math section, of course, but I don't tutor that since I suck at math. There's a reading comp section, very similar to the usual SAT business.

Then there's a wacky scrambled paragraph section, in which you're given a bunch of sentences out of order and must put them in logical and grammatical order (all correct, or you get no points): it really tests kids' ability to think as a writer, and it's very challenging for most of them.

Finally, there's a big section on logic. Sequence games: if John finishes before Mary and Mary is in third place, where does Alex place? Formal logic: if Sam does X, then Joe does Y. What MUST be true? And code games, often with a nonsense-language cryptology to figure out. These are all pretty fun to tutor.

Obviously the kids with a better home life are going to do better on these tests. I have one scary-smart student whose parents have bought him books of little logic puzzles to work on for fun. One lower-income kid (out in Canarsie! the commute is killing me!) is slaying the logic but has a hard time mustering the patience for the scrambled paragraphs. The kid whose parents have been going through a messy divorce for some seven years (how does that happen?!) is going to do fine if he ever gets his confidence up for it. And then the older student hoping to transfer into Stuyvesant is working her ass off but I'm not sure she has the inherent smarts for the test. It's a weird system.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 10:07 AM
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Oh, if Hunter has its own proprietary test, it's no wonder they're having trouble attracting a broad student pool. With all of these damn tests that kids are studying for, who wants to prepare another one?


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 10:09 AM
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31: I think you mean because she worked so hard.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 10:09 AM
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Hunter has its own test which is taken by 6th graders, the essay component is what prevents it from being 103% Asian or whatever the other specialized high schools are running at now.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 10:11 AM
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I don't know about economic diversity, but Stuyvesant is 2% black and 3% Hispanic. Also 69% Asian and 26% white.

Hello my childhood! 'Cept not so white.

Thing was, we were a smaller school on the same campus as a standard high school in the barrio. So the magnet brought its 20% white students into an entirely hispanic and black student population. If there were ten blonds in the 2500 students, I didn't see the other five.

(Yes, there was mingling at lunch and in sports. And kids in the home high school could take our classes if they wanted.)


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 10:13 AM
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36.---Christ, never mind. 30 and 33 can be stricken. (Struck?)


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 10:27 AM
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30, 33: Hunter has its own test because it starts in a different year -- sixth rather than ninth -- and because while public in the sense of being funded by the state government, it's not part of the NYC school system. It's run by Hunter College, which is part of CUNY; it started out as an experimental school for the Hunter College education department to play with.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 10:29 AM
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I actually find it very, very weird that public high schools would have admission tests. Given that some do, one would think that some sort of outreach program would be a natural step.

I'm not really seeing what's debatable about this; I suppose it's conceivable that the school's outcomes would change with a less perfectly-groomed student body, but I can't really see this as disastrous. One would like first and foremost to avoid de facto segregation.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 10:30 AM
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My cousin went to Hunter. Her friends are one source for my theory that about 60% of middle class/UMC NYC kids are incredibly sheltered nerds, but the remaining 40% are unbelievably insanely wild. They all seemed pretty smart, though.

I have to say, I think increasing diversity at elite schools has the most out of wack frequency of discussion: importance of issue ratios of any topic in the world. I say, keep Hunter non-diverse and let a thousand Brooklyn Techs bloom.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 10:31 AM
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One would like first and foremost to avoid de facto segregation.

Who does "One" refer to in that sentence?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 10:31 AM
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while public in the sense of being funded by the state government

Just curious: how's the funding work? I normally think of public schools as being funded by local taxes, with schools in higher-income areas able to spend more per capita on students, but in NYC I don't know how that would work (since y'all are all so squeezed in to a small space, and presumably don't just go to the nearest local high school).

What's the per capita spending discrepancy between a place like Hunter and most of the rest of the NYC public school system (70% black, according to the linked NYT article)?

I don't expect you have answer to that question at your fingertips, obviously; but I'd assume that Hunter is spending more dollars per student than your average NYC public school, and don't know how that works.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 10:38 AM
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I have to say, I think increasing diversity at elite schools has the most out of wack frequency of discussion: importance of issue ratios of any topic in the world.

Yglesias just had a post on the total unimportance, from a social justice point of view, of who gets into Harvard (and by extension into Hunter, which gets you into Harvard). And he's 95% right, but there's something left that makes it a real issue: the whole mandarin system, where a hyper-prestigious school is an incredible leg up toward getting any of a fairly small pool of very powerful political and media jobs.

If you're just worried about access to education, you can get a seriously good education at most state universities, and the thing to worry about is the elementary/secondary school systems that prepare you or don't to make use of it. But if you're worried about whether your perspective is going to be represented in the media or on the Supreme Court, worrying about who gets into Harvard isn't nuts. I think the answer, probably, is not so much to micromanage Harvard admissions, but to figure out some way (when I say this is the answer, I have no idea of how to bring it about) to break the hold Harvard and similar schools have on that pool of prestigious jobs.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 10:39 AM
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I actually find it very, very weird that public high schools would have admission tests. Given that some do, one would think that some sort of outreach program would be a natural step.

It is weird, but Stuyvesant, Brooklyn Tech, and Bronx Tech are among the best high schools in the country, public or private. There's also a performing arts school and an art school, and you have to submit a portfolio or do an audition to be accepted into them.

I do think there is a form of outreach: LB mentioned school tutoring programs in her original post, and I have the impression that even the private companies try to work with schools and do some reduced prices for small groups.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 10:41 AM
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42: Well, I in the first instance. You'd have to apply your imagination to think to whom else it might refer.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 10:42 AM
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presumably don't just go to the nearest local high school

You would if you weren't accepted into one of these selective high schools. Kids commute massive, massive distances to go to the selective schools, and consider themselves lucky.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 10:43 AM
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43: I don't know. I would guess, actually, that our funding might have been less per capita than NYC public schools. The building was pretty remarkably sucky, books weren't new, lab equipment was usually not quite enough to go around, and so on. And of course we had no students with educational special needs -- that might have changed some (that is, there might be some kids with learning disabilities who made it through the entrance exam but still need services), but still much less than in a regular school. Teachers were good, but I don't know whether they were paid the same, more, or less than city teachers -- I think they could probably have filled their spots with good teachers without paying a premium because people like teaching easy kids.

Funding came out of the CUNY budget, but that's all I know about it.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 10:44 AM
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47: I should be more on top of this than I am, but I don't think anyone automatically goes to the closest high school anymore. You list your preferred high schools in your district (if you're not applying to the selective ones) and they match up people by preference.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 10:47 AM
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But if you're worried about whether your perspective is going to be represented in the media or on the Supreme Court, worrying about who gets into Harvard isn't nuts.

Maybe, but I think this is a very NYC/legal perspective. In the media world out here, going to Harvard doesn't mean very much (not nothing, but not very much). It is true, though, that the legal world is unusually obsessed with a tiny handful of private schools as a gateway to opportunity.

I think that Harvard's diversity policies mostly benefit Harvard -- if it allowed itself to exclusively admit old school WASP grandkids of alumni (n.b. - this would personally benefit me), it would fairly quickly become irrelevant and get its lunch eaten by state schools as, to some extent, actually happened between about 1920 and 1980. Anyhow, even if you think that changing admissions policies elite schools could be some kind of a vehicle of social change, it's not a particularly important one.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 10:51 AM
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You'd have to apply your imagination to think to whom else it might refer.

I figured that asking the person who wrote it what she meant would be faster and more accurate. I'd be surprised if avoiding de facto segregation actually was the first and foremost goal for many involved in this issue.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 10:52 AM
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the remaining 40% are unbelievably insanely wild

Do they keep bees? Catch the occasional snake? Have sex in front of open windows? Insane!


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:00 AM
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Maybe, but I think this is a very NYC/legal perspective.

Say, NYC/Washington/legal/media/politics. Which you're right, isn't the whole world, but it's a big slice of power.

But most of the over-attention to it is a symptom of the same thing -- the chattering classes think of Harvard admission as a huge important deal, because it's a huge important deal for people who want to be them.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:01 AM
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52: I wouldn't know. 60%er here.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:02 AM
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51: So would I, but I gather Hunter heard a corrective message from its valedictorian, young Justin Hudson. Yay, Justin.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:03 AM
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Yay, Justin.

parsimon has Beiber fever!!!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:06 AM
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Not actually the valedictorian, we didn't do that. The faculty picked him to give the student speech at graduation. (Hmphf. Back in my day, the students voted for who was going to give the speech: the guy who won my year gave a very funny, clever speech at the audition, and "Graduation is not an ending, but a beginning" pap at the actual graduation. At the party afterwards, I told him his speech sucked, and he poured a beer over my head, which in retrospect was richly deserved. I had some imperfectly bottled up hostility going on at the time.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:06 AM
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Do they keep bees? Catch the occasional snake? Have sex in front of open windows? Insane!

Megan, I know you like to think of yourself as wild, but there is wildness beyond Meganess.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:07 AM
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Naw, I think of myself as sedate, and am always surprised to hear what you object to. So I need to calibrate your claims of wild behavior.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:09 AM
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Catch the occasional snake? Have sex in front of open windows?

But you repeat yourself.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:10 AM
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I told him his speech sucked, and he poured a beer over my head, which in retrospect was richly deserved.

!


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:10 AM
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The party had been going on for awhile, and I really was quite rude.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:12 AM
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57: Hmphf. Well, technically the valedictorian is just the person who gives the farewell speech, whether elected to do so, or having earned the position through being the first in the class. Except, er, that makes me not the valedictorian, since I was disinvited to give the speech, so, uh, never mind.

Anyway, yay Justin Hudson!


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:13 AM
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More like cocaine, sexual precocity, going to clubs/parties with 30 year olds, staying out until 4 am at age 16, that kind of thing. I was shocked, shocked, to learn of these things as a visiting 14 year old.

Anyhow, I don't view all of your Megan-like activities with shock and dismay. I view urban beekeeping as sociopathic, snake-catching as terrific (it's letting the large snakes out of the terrarium that I object to), and sex in front of an open window as A-OK.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:15 AM
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there is wildness beyond Meganess.

M-wild.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:18 AM
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+ness


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:21 AM
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break the hold Harvard and similar schools have on that pool of prestigious jobs.

I think this is already happening. The Old Boy network is fraying, Supreme Court Justice nominations notwithstanding. Almost all of the Harvard alums that I know are really upset with their alma mater, not giving donations, not encouraging their kids to apply, etc. I don't know when that hits a tipping point, because I know that there are plenty of people, especially foreigners who look at Harvard as the ne plus ultra. Rig the US News Poll so that they drop out of the top ten?


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:25 AM
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OK. I think I'm getting calibrated to your views. Now I know better what to expect from that crazy 40% of LB's classmates.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:27 AM
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41: What year was she there? If it's within a couple of years of class of '88, email me so I can see if I knew her.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:32 AM
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6 years, I think.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:32 AM
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64.1: No wonder you think that northern California people are uptight and prudish. That's kind of a high bar to clear, Rob.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:33 AM
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62: I think ttaM was just surprised the the kid took criticism in the traditional Scottish manner.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:37 AM
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70: No shot I'd know her, then.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:37 AM
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72: The fact that I wasn't chibbed establishes that the guy wasn't a Scot.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:38 AM
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I didn't read the Yglesias thing on the relative importance of Harvard admissions, but I feel the need to say that the place does provide a first-rate education for many, if not most, so it's not clear to me that it needs to be taken down a peg in terms of the education it provides. Is that a contentious thing to say? Seriously, though, there's no way I'd have gotten that kind of education in a state school. Maybe I'm wrong.

The quality of the education is a different matter, of course, from what LB points to in 44.2.

(One of the things I've been finding uncomfortable here lately is the privilege; and here I am contributing to it in some sense.)


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:42 AM
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Maybe I'm wrong.

Yep.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:44 AM
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One of the things I've been finding uncomfortable here lately is the privilege

This is kind of unpleasant, parsimon. I, for example, have led a life characterized by all sorts of privilege -- white privilege, straight privilege, raised-by-professionals UMC privilege, and so on. If you mean that conversations with my ilk are uncomfortable for you, (a) I'm rubber and you're glue, and so forth and so on; (b) there's nothing I can do to have been less privileged, so there's not much you can do except stop talking to me -- raising my, e.g., privilege as if it were a moral failing I could fix is incoherent.

If there's some fixable behavior that's making you uncomfortable, it'd be easier to do something about it if you'd be more specific.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:50 AM
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Maybe you could be a bit more groveling about your privilege, LB. You know, mention it more often, caveat all your comments with a preface about your privilege.

I suppose we could do that in our heads, since we've known you for years, but maybe Parsimon would be more comfortable if we all talked about our privilege before we said the things our worldview inexorably leads us to.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:54 AM
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if we all talked about our privilege before we said the things our worldview inexorably leads us to.

Where you stand depends upon where you sit?


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:57 AM
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77 is a bit hostile. I'm not parsimon, who of course can speak up for herself (and likely will have done so by the time I post this), but my guess is that she meant conversations exclusively or overwhelmingly among the privileged make her uncomfortable (at times), not that having conversations merely involving privileged people make her uncomfortable, much less that there's anything you specifically are doing that's making her uncomfortable, or that it some sort of moral failing on your part. (I'm speculating about all this because I feel the same way at times.) Of course, you're not trying to do anything to prevent less privileged people from participating in conversations, and would no doubt welcome that participation, so there's nothing you're necessarily doing wrong.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:58 AM
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One of the things I've been finding uncomfortable here lately is the privilege

If you think privilege is uncomforatable, trying being unprivileged.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:58 AM
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77: The only thing to be done about it is for me to read more widely. But I'm just very aware of how many people are struggling significantly right now (economic downturn), and threads from the perspective of those who are pretty much fine (indeed hiring maids in some cases) sometimes make me cringe.

As I say, nothing to be done. I put the remark at 75.last in parentheses because I thought I might be helpful somewhere along the line to indicate why I've been fussy around here lately. I'm trying to keep it in check.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:59 AM
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If you think privilege is uncomforatable, trying being unprivileged.

Amazingly, English is this commenter's first (and only!) language!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:01 PM
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Seriously, though, there's no way I'd have gotten that kind of education in a state school.

Oh, sure you could. What you don't get is a comparable professional network.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:02 PM
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82: I can't afford a maid! I up to my ears in debt!
Does that make you feel better, parsimon?

I feel worse.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:03 PM
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I have a maid. She gets $62.56 an hour.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:04 PM
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What you don't get is a comparable professional network.

I would like to see a study of the cross generational benefits of these networks, especially now that the old guard is transition out of the workplace.


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:06 PM
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threads from the perspective of those who are pretty much fine

And yet some of us are pretty much fine, for now. Life is uncertain; fortunes shift. But are we only to talk about the things we think about when we aren't doing OK?

Parsimon, the problem is never that people are doing OK, even that they talk about the choices they face as they are doing OK. The problem is always that not every is doing so well. The goals isn't that people should stop talking about their trivial privileged problems. The goal is for everyone to do so well that their problems are equally frivolous.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:08 PM
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87: I think we can safely say that Mr. Douthat would not have his current position, if he had attended a state school.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:09 PM
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||
Hey, I just realized my newest student lives a block away from the "Ground Zero Mosque." This is awesome for many reasons. 1) Apartments in that area are totally swank and interesting to visit. 2) After class, it will be convenient to wander over with a giant 1st Amendment placard. 3) Century 21, baby!
|>


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:11 PM
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But I'm just very aware of how many people are struggling significantly right now (economic downturn)

Yes. I wish someone would hire me!


Posted by: Opinionated Maid | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:12 PM
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I'm trying to keep it in check.

That'd be nice, because people here are generally fairly self-aware and alert to the larger world. They already know they're a tiny sub-section, and even so, not entirely homogenous. Even so, while I'm sure they'd be the first to say they don't face wrenching problems on a world scale (although some of them do at some times), they nevertheless want to parse through their own concerns without being told those are frivolous when others are suffering more.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:13 PM
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I think we can safely say that Mr. Douthat would not have his current position, if he had attended a state school.

What if the state school was Cal? He probably wouldn't have written a book about Harvard, so you got me there.


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:13 PM
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After class, it will be convenient to wander over with a giant 1st Amendment placard.

Bitching on the internet is even easier that carrying a placard.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:13 PM
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Parsimon, the problem is never that people are doing OK, even that they talk about the choices they face as they are doing OK. The problem is always that not every is doing so well. The goals isn't that people should stop talking about their trivial privileged problems. The goal is for everyone to do so well that their problems are equally frivolous.

Yeah, I have a friend with to whom I make a similar argument on a semi-regular basis.

The world is horrible, unfair, and cruel, but it's also lovely and frequently offers interesting opportunities even to people who are struggling in their lives.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:14 PM
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92: I get it, Megan, really.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:16 PM
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I've only gone to state schools that were best known for football. Does this mean I'm more authentic (or whatever) than most of you?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:18 PM
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I never said anything about cake, ya know.


Posted by: Maria Antonia Josepha Johanna Bourbon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:18 PM
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The placard will be easier than spraypaint, which figured in one of my daydreams. I'm surprised how much the hoopla about this pisses me off; you'd have thought I'd be desensitized by now.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:19 PM
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people here are generally fairly self-aware and alert to the larger world.

"fairly" seems like an important qualifier in that comment.

I can certainly say, from my own experience, that there have been any number of conversations on unfogged that have made me contemplate the limitations of my own experience and perspective. So I appreciate the times when somebody says, "you all are taking a lot for granted in your comments."

If you read 75 as saying, "please don't talk like this" that's different, of course, from contributing another perspective to the conversation. But I don't believe that's what parsimon intended.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:19 PM
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But I'm just very aware of how many people are struggling significantly right now (economic downturn), and threads from the perspective of those who are pretty much fine (indeed hiring maids in some cases) sometimes make me cringe.

I think it might help foster discussion, as opposed to mere annoyance, if you, in this instance for example, explained what makes you cringe and why, instead of just griping at people.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:21 PM
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96: And I'm sorry I jumped on you so hard -- this sort of thing is something where it's hard to be clear without sounding enraged. I'm not enraged, I was just a little piqued by your parenthetical, and wanted to spell out in detail why I thought it wasn't a useful way to communicate.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:21 PM
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Oops. 101 was me.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:23 PM
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100: What you say makes sense but a blanket "you all are taking a lot for granted" isn't exactly helpful; what is helpful is the specific pointing out of where privilege is blinding a person. For example, when I offhandedly commented that making $30/hr sounded appealing in the maid discussion, and was then reminded that hey, that's not a salary - you have to subtract supplies, overhead, commute time, etc, etc - that was a helpful reminder for someone who's never had to do contract work.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:24 PM
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90: You could also call me for lunch.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:24 PM
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And I am pwned, and now appear just to be piling on. Sorry!


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:25 PM
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105.--Sweet! I'll be there mostly on weekends though, and you decadent state employees only work Tuesday and Thursday, right?


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:25 PM
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want to parse through their own concerns without being told those are frivolous

Or at least to be entertained while being mocked. Seriously, this is a staple of contemporary comedy, telling the comfortable audience that they suck.

The problem here IMO is that this kind of humor does not translate well to little comment boxes, and that there is simultaneously distance appropriate to strangers coincident with personal details here. It's easier to be serious than funny, this very remark for example, I've got nothing funny at the moment besides my vanities.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:25 PM
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97: Wow! A REAL American!

Do you chew with your mouth open too?

(actually my 2 degrees are from a state school which may be best known for its football team, and another state school known outside the state almost exclusively for a shooting incident)


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:26 PM
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Sometimes I get jealous or annoyed with how smug and successful everyone online seems to be, but then I just act like a dick for a while and I feel better.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:26 PM
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I'm surprised how much the hoopla about this pisses me off; you'd have thought I'd be desensitized by now.

People hold grudges for a long time. On this issue I heard one wag say " There's no Benihana's at Pearl Harbor, either." But there is one at Waikiki


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:27 PM
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So I appreciate the times when somebody says, "you all are taking a lot for granted in your comments."

Me too.

If you read 75 as saying, "please don't talk like this" that's different

75 plus a string of comments in the last several days have seemed to be saying just that.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:27 PM
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106: You are truly history's greatest monster.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:29 PM
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110: Yes, I think of you as one of the smug and successful ones.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:29 PM
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109: I knew a guy who taught at the shooting incident school if it was the original shooting incident school.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:30 PM
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113: Thanks, M/tch. I've now been properly castigated.

||

Cats are seriously the grossest creatures ever.

|>


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:30 PM
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When I was selling books to pay for groceries, I didn't exactly want to talk about it online.


Posted by: Mary Todd Lincoln | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:30 PM
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I've only gone to state schools that were best known for football.

My state school hasn't won a bowl game since 2001.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:31 PM
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115: A school specifically devoted to shooting incidents? Man, you can get a degree in anything these days.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:31 PM
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Seriously, this is a staple of contemporary comedy, telling the comfortable audience that they suck.

I kind of hate that (see my failure to be terribly amused by the SWPL thing). It seems like a way of desensitizing people to the fact that they are in fact doing harmful things and should stop insofar as they can figure out how.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:32 PM
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117: I've been almost there a few times this summer (not that things are sooo bad but doing piecemeal work meant that my income has been sporadic). Sympathies. It sucks.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:32 PM
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Cats are seriously the grossest creatures ever.

I've already called you history's greatest monster. No need to overdo it.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:34 PM
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A school specifically devoted to shooting incidents?

But of course.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:34 PM
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117: Other than that, how was the play shopping?


Posted by: Opinionated tactless reporter | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:35 PM
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115: Must be the same school -- "what if you knew her and saw her dead on the ground?"


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:35 PM
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When I was selling books to pay for groceries, I didn't exactly want to talk about it online.

I think this is right. We all have lots of anxiety and shame and bad feeling, about financial things, sure, but also professional, social, whatever. At least, I sure do. It's just not necessarily what comes to mind when you think about what you want to share with a bunch of random strangers on the internet.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:35 PM
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122: My two cat's aggressive and seemingly obsessive mutual butt licking is getting to me. STOP DOING THAT IN FRONT OF ME!


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:36 PM
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doing piecemeal work meant that my income has been sporadic

Try commission sales in this market. With a wife used to the finer things. There have been some sleepless nights, I tell you. Cue "Dip into principal??!!" jokes here.


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:37 PM
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Cats are seriously the grossest creatures ever.

Rabbits drink straight from the tap, yo.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:38 PM
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seemingly obsessive mutual butt licking is getting to me

Jealous?


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:38 PM
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129: Yeah, I had rabbits as a kid. The thing there is that you never actually see them DOING that. So you can safely put it out of your mind and enjoy the snuggly bunny.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:39 PM
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With a wife used to the finer things.

People are shy about money, but they'll brag about their penis given any opening.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:39 PM
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Why did I click on that link?


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:39 PM
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in this instance for example, explained what makes you cringe

The way you hold your fork while telling other people what to do is bothersome.

120. "should" makes people tune out, I think. Seriously, who listens, ever, if it goes against self-interest?

Possibly it's effective to say that something is unflattering, but this requires earning the target's respect in the first place. Which I am not doing here-- most of the humor that comes to mind here is pointed and kind of nasty, just leads to bickering.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:39 PM
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obsessive mutual butt licking

You need to establish a clearer heirarchy between them.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:40 PM
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Cue "Dip into principal??!!" jokes here.

Here? No, I think you're going to have to go to the Opinionated Investment Banker blog for that.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:40 PM
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It's just not necessarily what comes to mind when you think about what you want to share with a bunch of random strangers on the internet.

Perhaps I shouldn't have shared my not-so-heartwarming thoughts on my cats.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:41 PM
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133. +1.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:41 PM
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Seriously, who listens, ever, if it goes against self-interest?

Liberals, right? Isn't that our schtik?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:43 PM
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Jealous?
I long ago abandoned all hope of licking my own junk, but I'm proud to say I can scratch my left ear with my unaided foot.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:44 PM
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what comes to mind when you think about what you want to share with a bunch of random strangers on the internet

That you're really a dog?


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:45 PM
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With a wife used to the finer things.

I don't mean you in particular, because of course I don't know anything about your marriage. But when I've heard of similar set-ups, my thought is always, "but then you guys figure out what this year will bring and everyone adjusts accordingly." Is there really grief at not always maintaining the peak standard of luxury? Where does that come from? The commissions-earner, who doesn't like to admit to the spouse that commissions have cycles? The spouse, who would rather have the commissions-earner hide that and pretend to be able to afford the same finer things? Does the luxury-adapted spouse really value believing in that level of wealth over the commissions-earning spouse's sleep?

With that, I'm off to swim! Really, swim!


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:45 PM
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||

More good gay news: Target CEO Apologizes For Company's Support Of Tom Emmer.

|>


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:47 PM
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143: Now we can call it Tar-gay! Damn, I'm funny.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:54 PM
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but then you guys figure out what this year will bring and everyone adjusts accordingly

The problem is that there is no way to know what this year will bring. One can be off your guess significantly. Adjusting spending downward is fraught with peril, but better than the alternative. It depends on baseline assumptions. Not going out to dinner all the time is one thing, going camping instead of hotels, these are not problems. Sweating the tuition payment, problem. Putting the kids in public school almost ended the marriage. I didn't have a problem with it, and in fact the boy has thrived. The girl had some adjustment issues, which still need to be addressed. Life goes on.


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 12:57 PM
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143: That is good news! And actually suprising to me.

In retrospect, it's clear they had no choice. What designers would they be able to get?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:00 PM
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101: I think it might help foster discussion, as opposed to mere annoyance, if you, in this instance for example, explained what makes you cringe and why, instead of just griping at people.

To this and various others, I admit I'm a bit unclear whether I should shut up or explain.

Brock at 80 and NickS at 100 roughly capture my perspective.

Megan's 88.last is most interesting:

Parsimon, the problem is never that people are doing OK, even that they talk about the choices they face as they are doing OK. The problem is always that not every is doing so well. The goals isn't that people should stop talking about their trivial privileged problems. The goal is for everyone to do so well that their problems are equally frivolous.

That is the goal, agreed. However, we don't live in that society, not even close. Pretending that we do is akin to supposing that the rest of the non-privileged world doesn't exist, and we've already achieved the aspirational world.

There's an interesting thread on CT about this. I don't see a way to link to a specific comment there, but the thread is here. Comment 55:

There's a difference between saying we are entitled to demand and collectively to create socialism (and thereby secure its benefits for ourselves and each other) and saying, what I think a lot of people think, that I am entitled to secure those benefits or benefits of equivalent value under capitalism.

You'd have to scroll up a bit in that thread to see the context. The top is entitlement, or rather privileged results, and the right thereto.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:03 PM
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144: Not that I think I'm being original, mind you.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:07 PM
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142: The problem arises when you calculate an affordable mortgage based on, "I'm sure I'll never make less than 75% of my lowest year in the past decade, " and then . . .



Posted by: unimaginative | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:13 PM
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Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:15 PM
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Oh, at 147.last there, "top" should be "topic."


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:21 PM
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I'm torn on this. I don't like smugness and am totally fine (and think we all should be reminded, all the time) about how lucky we are. For me, in many ways, my greatest personal shame is failing to live up to a set of incredibly lucky breaks. On the other hand, there is a certain holier-than-thouness about this that I find distasteful:

Pretending that we do is akin to supposing that the rest of the non-privileged world doesn't exist, and we've already achieved the aspirational world

Who is pretending that? People are just trying to talk honestly about their experiences.



Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:23 PM
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Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:26 PM
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Speaking as somebody who will very soon be making almost as much as I was at the end of Bill Clinton's first term (plus benefits!), I think now is the time that we should be really tearing into those less fortunate than us for their incompetence and sloth.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:29 PM
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152: Yeah, that's about where I come down. I know Strunk and White has been discredited as a style guide, but still, parsimon? I think a fair amount of what I was bristling at is a tendency you have to gently deplore patterns of behavior in sentences that don't identify an actor, such as "Pretending that we do is akin to supposing that the rest of the non-privileged world doesn't exist, and we've already achieved the aspirational world." I mean, you're right, pretending that we live in socialist utopia would be a lousy thing to do. But uttering that sentence implies that it's an error you think someone who might read the sentence is in danger of falling into and should be warned against, and if you don't identify who you're cautioning, there's a certain risk that all sorts of readers will get their hackles up at you.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:31 PM
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Yeah Tweety!

(I'm assuming that's cause for celebration.)


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:34 PM
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152.last: I understand that. People are free to talk about their experience of life as they currently live it. Obviously.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:35 PM
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(I'm assuming that's cause for celebration.)

It basically is. It's a weird world we live in, but having a job with benefits is vastly superior to having no job or having two or three jobs with no benefits, ill-defined responsibilities, and under-accounting of hours worked. So in that sense, hooray.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:37 PM
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Man, college degree, married, job... our little Tweety is all grown up.

All you need is a dog.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:38 PM
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All you need is a dog.

I know just the one!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:40 PM
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158: In modern life, ahedonia and delusions of grandiosity are often hard to tell apart.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:42 PM
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155: I'm not going to make targeted remarks toward specific people, LB. A comment like the one you quote is general for a reason. If your hackles rise at it, I imagine you'd want to consider whether you think you're subject to the behavior in question; if you think you aren't then you're fine.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:43 PM
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if you think you aren't then you're fine

Or, you know, clueless. One or the other.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:46 PM
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I am, in fact, not the boss of you. If you're comfortable sending out the message that you disapprove of some unidentified subset of the people you're addressing, and that everyone reading should check themselves to figure out if they're the ones on your bad side, then you're good. I just thought you might not realize how the untargeted comments came across, at least to me.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:47 PM
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162 is one of the most hilariously passive-aggressive things I think I've ever read on this site. I look forward to the inevitable thousand-comment meta-thread enthusiastically.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:47 PM
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161: delusions of grandiosity? Is that when you incorrectly believe yourself to feel superior?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:48 PM
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Anyhow, no, I'm very excited to have a job. Whether I'm excited to have this job (as opposed to all the other jobs that weren't offered to me, but anyhow) is sort of an open question.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:49 PM
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Just to make for the four-peat, I'm actually dealing with the effects of anhedonia in one of my projects at work. Eerie!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:50 PM
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168: Have you tried getting outdoors and getting more exercise?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:50 PM
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All you need is a dog.

A dog that craps pot?


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:51 PM
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164: As I said earlier, it's really best that I just drop the matter, read more widely, and not complain about unfogged being unfogged.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:51 PM
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I'm very excited to have a job

It sounds like you're mostly excited to have the pay and the benefits, not the job.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:52 PM
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169: Rapid cycling is often found when a period of anhedonia ends.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:55 PM
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I really appreciated the maid discussion. My partner (who'd much rather spend money than spend time on cleaning) has been pushing for one for quite a while, while I've been tangled up in not wanting to spend that much money and also just feeling generally inadequate for not keeping the house magnificently clean. Then this conversation was posted and my physical therapist told me that on days when I'm having certain kinds of pain I shouldn't even be taking the stairs if I didn't need to, so I'm now much more open to the idea and have a sense of how to go about it. But I never got around to posting this comment there and thus will leave it here instead.

I'm not always part of the target audience of a post or discussion tangent, but I still enjoy hearing what people have to say. I also supplement with reading elsewhere and think that's probably a good idea for all of us. Well, maybe not the ToS.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:58 PM
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172: For most of us those things kind of go together.

Congrats Sifu!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 1:59 PM
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how lucky we are

I take your point and I'm picking on you only because you used a blanket "we" most recently, but I think it's rather important that we don't gloss over the fact that the commentariat and lurkitariat aren't all equally lucky or privileged and aren't all from or in the UMC (not to mention other forms of privilege). I don't think you meant to imply that, but one could read it that way.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:01 PM
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176: We are all lucky to have internet access! I think that is a safe generalization.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:02 PM
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More good gay news: Target CEO Apologizes For Company's Support Of Tom Emmer.

Did he take the money back or donate an equivalent amount to Emmer's opponent? Because otherwise I don't see what's so great about an apology.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:04 PM
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165: It really is a masterpiece of the form.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:06 PM
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I had some imperfectly bottled up hostility going on at the time.

I'm going to frame that one and treasure it forever.

Also, 88 gets it exactly right and, to be direct about it, parsley's commenting style is at times uncongenial.

And yay Tweety!


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:08 PM
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180 was me.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:08 PM
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176 -- fair enough and very good point. Apologies for some sloppy writing on my part.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:12 PM
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It sounds like you're mostly excited to have the pay and the benefits, not the job.

You know, I might be excited about the job. I took a pretty substantial pay cut from what I think I'm worth in order to come here, and in theory that should pay dividends for me down the road, but I'm still finding my way in the environment (read: I haven't yet determined if I'm surrounded by jerks) and what I'm doing is more similar to what I used to do than I had hoped might be the case, given the (relative) sacrifice involved. But if it works out, it should be pretty good.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:12 PM
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I haven't yet determined if I'm surrounded by jerks

If you have trouble figuring out who the jerk is, ....


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:15 PM
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178: For one, they presumably won't donate any more. For two, a major corporation apologizing for indirectly donating to someone who's anti-gay rights is highly unusual, especially given that Emmer isn't, as near as I can tell from a significant lack of research, a frothing-at-the-mouth, kill-the-fags type, merely a mainstream-ish pro-DOMA, anti-adoption homophobe. For three, I wish it were more than an apology, but it's a start.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:15 PM
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I disapprove of people who do things I don't like, and you can decide for yourself whether you're going to incur my disapproval.


Posted by: Cryptic Ned | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:16 PM
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183 sounds like genuinely good jews.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:17 PM
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I'm actually dealing with the effects of anhedonia in one of my projects at work.
I didn't know one could get health insurance in this line of work.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:17 PM
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s/b "news"


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:17 PM
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90: Also if you are lucky someone will ask you how to get to "ground zero" and you can make use of one of the many fine sarcastic responses discussed here in weeks past, or invent your own! W/r/t Century 21, I'm still trying to figure out if there's an hour of the day when it isn't a complete nightmare.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:17 PM
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Good luck, Sifu!

Some things on the internet do not make me grateful for my access, I admit.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:17 PM
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At the door of every happy person there should be a man with a hammer whose knock would serve as a constant reminder of the existence of unfortunate people.

Parsimon is just knocking on the door with her hammer.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:18 PM
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186: You should also disapprove of people who do things that you like, on grounds that no one likes a suck-up. And of judgmental people.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:18 PM
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191.2: What? That's adorable!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:19 PM
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191: You've probably seen it before, but if you haven't "regretsy" is that link on meth.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:19 PM
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Thanks for 189, Brock!

I didn't want have to go all ADL on you.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:21 PM
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194: It's absolutely adorable, but what the fuck? I love the thought that someone's making money selling patterns for little girly Sherlock Holmes dolls (for knitting or crochet, no less!) but it's also incredibly weird.

195: I don't read regretsy very consistently because it got sort of one-note and dull, but it can be cheering during times of anhedonia. I suppose it could also plunge you into a pit of despair, but that hasn't been my experience.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:23 PM
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190: I go in waves with Century 21 -- it saves my ass for last minute Christmas presents every year, but I keep on thinking I'm going to be able to buy myself work clothes there cheaply, and I never really manage it. Sometimes I don't find anything, and sometimes I buy odd things that I later regret.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:26 PM
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This Century 21 talk confused me. So I googled it and it turns out it is "New York's Best Kept Secret!"

Wow! New York isn't very good at keeping secrets, is it?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:31 PM
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Man, college degree, married, job... our little Tweety is all grown up.

That's quite a list. Does Blume know about the man, though?


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:40 PM
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And then the internet stole my self-exhonorating "/borsch belt" html tag. Rats.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:43 PM
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190: Like 7 am, or whenever it first opens, for about half an hour. Anytime after that you're trading elbows with European tourists.
I have way, way, way more consistent luck there for CA (ties, dress shirts, sport coats), but the relative hit-or-miss-ness of my own experience is pretty much made up for by the grand-slamitude of the hits (I'd name them, but I might get scolded for buying fancy clothes on markdown.)


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:44 PM
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201: Then it misspelled two of the words in your explanatory comment!


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:45 PM
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"Exhonorating" really needs to be a word, though.


Posted by: Mr. Blandings | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:46 PM
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I'd name them, but I might get scolded for buying fancy clothes on markdown.

You already gave up too much info.

Consider yourself scolded.



Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:47 PM
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198: As long as we're talking clothes . . . do any of you laydeez know a place to get cotton slips? It's too goddamn hot and sweaty to wear polyester ones. Finding a cotton one at a brick-and-mortar store seems to be impossible and I'd welcome a recommendation to narrow down the google results.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:48 PM
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I'd welcome a recommendation to narrow down the google results.

Try searching "cotton slips -shitacular"


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:50 PM
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Certain unnamed people just don't appreciate the privilege involved in wearing fancy clothes, and might want to consider whether certain other unnamed people might be bothered by the fanciness of those clothes, or so I might or might not have heard someone say somewhere once.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:51 PM
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Well, thank god your hear to corect them. Wait, what's the second word? Am I supposed to have written "borshch" to reflect phonetically ahistorical conventions of Russian-to-English transliteration?


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:51 PM
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I got nothing -- I don't think I've worn a slip since the first Bush administration. What do you wear them for -- opacity, or cling-avoidance?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:52 PM
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Way back in 18 there is a point I want to clarify:

it's like the NBA bragging about making people tall.

Only if hanging around other tall people could make you even taller.

Getting a bunch of really smart kids together in one place will create an educationally transformative experience. So its not like the school is doing noting. People come out different than they cam in because of an environment the school created.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:53 PM
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209: I think I've seen it as "borscht". I have no opinion about correct transliteration of the Russian.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:54 PM
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209: You're got the t in the wrong place. It should be "You can ring my borscht bell."


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:54 PM
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210: Opacity. Thin cotton skirts plus bright sunlight = TMI.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:56 PM
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210: I wore slips a lot in the 90s. But, like, only the slips.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:56 PM
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So its not like the school is doing noting.

What did your school do?


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:56 PM
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214, 215 -- This thread is moving in the right direction.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:57 PM
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211: You know, mmmaybe. I mean, in theory I accept that, and I'd believe that I came out of Hunter a little cleverer and less alienated than I would have at a school that was less of a hothouse. OTOH, I've met a lot of people who went to non-hothouse high schools, and if the experience I had at Hunter was educationally transformative, I'm not sure what you'd use as evidence for that.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:57 PM
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http://ru.wikipedia.org/wiki/%D0%A4%D0%B0%D0%B9%D0%BB:Borsch-tube.jpg


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:57 PM
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"Century 21"? Century 21, the real estate agency... slash thrift store?


Posted by: Cryptic Ned | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 2:58 PM
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219: Coolest thing ever!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:00 PM
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211, 218: I'm pretty confident that if I had gone to my neighborhood high school instead of a magnet school, I would have gone to college at a state school and ended up leading a very different life than I do now. Maybe the same isn't true for kids in NYC, but going to a magnet school put options on my radar that just wouldn't have been there otherwise.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:00 PM
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220: Out here in the Real America it's a real estate agency. But there in Bolshevik Pharisee Land it's a BIG SECRET! That everyone knows about!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:02 PM
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221 to 215.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:03 PM
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I'm pretty confident that if I'd gone to my neighborhood high school, I'd have been as ostracized as I was when I went to elementary school with those kids, and I don't think that I would have lived through it. I credit the magnet schools with everything that is recognizable as my life.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:06 PM
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224 may be right.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:06 PM
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What did your school do?

High school or college?

St. John's College introduced me to Oudemia, who at the time was wearing only a slip.

My first high school was like Hunter, except private. The social environment there normally gives people all the skills and connections they need to survive in the elite world. It made me suicidally depressed.

My second high school was an ordinary suburban public school. I took my first philosophy class there, so it couldn't be all bad.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:07 PM
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222: I shouldn't overstate the uselessness of selective schools -- the 'putting options on your radar' thing is a real effect. (Buck went to college at all because he went to a school where there were UMC kids who expected to go to college who he was friends with; in his family, it wouldn't have been on his radar.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:07 PM
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210: I wore slips a lot in the 90s. But, like, only the slips.

Were you surrounded by hazy sun at all times? Did you have freckles?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:08 PM
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Growing up, we didn't even have a magnet school.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:08 PM
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Although one of the smartest people in my high school went to a state school, then to an Ivy for grad school and a different Ivy for a postdoc. On the other hand, he became progressively more devoutly religious with ever passing year. So, uh, mixed results for the state school control experiment.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:08 PM
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Originally Steve Sailer wrote:

Kagan's brother was apparently involved in pulling off a coup against a principal who didn't want quotas.

In a testament to his high journalistic standards, he weaseled it to this:

Kagan's brother was apparently involved in mounting a coup attempt against the principal's boss, who didn't want quotas.

But not until after I submitted my comment:

Allow me to clarify it for all of you "Wooda gutten to Huwood if hit wadn't for dem Thuh Joos" Geniuses with superb reading comprehension skills:

The principal of Hunter College High School was Eileen Coppola, who is pro-diversity, but she resigned despite the support of the faculty.

Jennifer J. Raab, the president of Hunter College, is the one who doesn't want "quotas" and she did NOT resign. Nor was she the victim of any coup. And it's rather telling that you failed to mention how she was appointed.

Of course, getting the facts straight would have made it impossible for you to fit them into your persecuted, underappreciated anti-PC iconoclast narrative.

Not to mention the fact that the urge to libel Elena Kagan's brother must have been too tempting for you to resist.

P.S. It's nice to see the acolytes here finally get that high school students join JROTC and not ROTC.


Posted by: Immigrant Group Quintilingual | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:09 PM
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+y


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:09 PM
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I shouldn't overstate the uselessness of selective schools -- the 'putting options on your radar' thing is a real effect.

Not just real but huge. As I've said before, my son is about 20 years ahead of where I was in his understanding of the world. We'll see what he does with it.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:09 PM
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Ah, borscht. Right. I swear I'm not being a pedant when I say I forgot it's pronounced like that in English. I just never had much occasion to talk about it before I spoke Russian. It's borsh, more or less. борщ.

умерших слов разлагаются трупики,
только два живут, жирея -
"сволочь"
и еще какое-то,
кажется, "борщ".

хуй с тобой, clown.

-V. Mayakovskii


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:10 PM
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We'll see what he does with it.

He'll probably become history's greatest monster.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:12 PM
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225: I was an ostracised mess in grade school, too. I honestly don't know what would have happened to me in a neighborhood high school -- I might have snapped out of it.

(In fact, my parents were worried enough about me that the plan was to spend money they really didn't have on a ludicrously expensive girls' school for me if I didn't get into Hunter. The tour I took for the admissions interview horrified my reverse snobbish sensibilities to the point that I was considering digging in my heels and refusing to go if it came to that. I would have come out of there either a brainwashed preppie tool, or a heroin addict.) (Actually, it would probably have been fine. I'm sure the school has many charming and functional alumnae.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:14 PM
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231 doesn't actually make a lot of sense, I guess, since the same options were on the radar for anyone who went to my high school, even if they chose to go a state school. People who went to my junior high mostly seem to have ended up married with children by age 19.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:14 PM
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236: Everyone needs a hobby.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:15 PM
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232 - That'll teach Steve Sailer!


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:15 PM
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I misread 232 and ban myself.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:16 PM
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Hey, look, a new crazy person has shown up!


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:18 PM
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242: No, I think the comment's just unclearly formatted. (And it's not exactly clear why it's here rather than on Sailer's blog, but it'd make sense there, I think.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:21 PM
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To keep the universe balanced, shouldn't somebody go make a cock joke on Sailer's blog?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:26 PM
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Shearer reads over there, you think he's up for it?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:27 PM
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I think that because the last six lines of 232 are preceded by "But not until after I submitted my comment:", the last six lines of 232 constitute a comment that was submitted to Steve Sailer.


Posted by: Cryptic Ned | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:27 PM
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237: Brearley? I was once at a party where every woman but me had gone there and every guy had gone to Riverdale.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:29 PM
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I love the Steve Sailer/Matthew Yglesias relationship. It's the love that only a precocious, Harvard-educated hispanic Jew and a old white racist crank can know.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:30 PM
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247: Actually, yes. The place creeped me out big time, but what did I know, I was eleven. In any case, I didn't have to make a stand about it (and probably would have folded like a cheap suit if it had come to that).


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:32 PM
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I know someone who went to Dwight, which I believe is the last chance rich kids prep school in NYC, and apparently stands for "Dumb White Idiots Getting High Together."


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:32 PM
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I don't think I've ever actually bought anything at Century 21. The prices are still too high, compared to the Goodwills I'm used to. I enjoy browsing there, though: I like fondling nice fabrics.

For at least one of the kids I'm tutoring, I believe that the selective high school will make a significant difference in outcome. I'm thinking particularly of the super-smart kid, who at 11 years old shows the signs of either being a total multi-discipline genius or a first-class juvenile delinquent. He's already set my lesson plan on fire a couple of times. Another one who could really benefit from the selective school is the kid in Canarsie, son of a Caribbean immigrant, who has obviously gotten too used to being the smartest kid in the class. He's very polite and respectful (see other thread), but it's pretty clear that he has contempt for stupid people AND for questions he can't answer right away. I'm not sure that the outcome difference will be in the quality of their educations, but I'm pretty sure that their personalities and social skills will be affected by a smarter peer group.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:33 PM
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CA went to as fancy a public school as they come (the one ogged went to), and yet was so committed to his punk-rock malingering that he only went to college (well, the first time) because his father filled out and mailed in an application to the University of Iowa. He later ended up with me and helpy-chalk at Keep-Arguing-about-Kant-While-Drunk-at-Parties College.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:33 PM
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He's already set my lesson plan on fire a couple of times.

In context, this is really ambiguous.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:34 PM
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CA went to as fancy a public school as they come (the one ogged went to)

Pff. Pikers. Now, my public school?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:37 PM
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To clarify: I have scorch marks on my notes. The math tutor reported that on one occasion the kid locked himself in the bathroom rather than come out for his lesson. In fairness, when the kid is in a good mood and feels reasonably challenged by the material, he's completely charming. His parents seem sort of helpless about it and are REALLY hoping that he gets admitted into Stuyvesant.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:38 PM
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The two kids sound like they should star in a buddy movie. The super genius would set the respectful kid on fire a little, the respectful kid would loosen up, and they could fight crime together.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:40 PM
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Of course, if they both get into Stuyvesant, they can bond over complaining about my tutoring.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:42 PM
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This is in fact the plot of an existing Jonathan Lethem novel.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:42 PM
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Now I must go meet up with my social life.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:42 PM
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LB or someone, would you mind cleaning up 150&153?


Posted by: Tiny Hermaphrodite, Esq. | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:43 PM
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The privilege discussion has passed on a little, but I don't really see us Unfogged-ites as being super economically privileged by American standards. Culturally and educationally privileged, yes, definitely, but there are frequent stories of economic stress around here.

The top 20 percent of U.S. tax filers have a family income of $110,000...I'll leave it as an exercise for the reader how many of us fit in that category. Some, definitely, but my guess would be not a majority.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:48 PM
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Some, definitely, but my guess would be not a majority.

The proportion will definitely start increasing as the many graduate students here finish up and move on to lucrative endowed chairs.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:49 PM
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243: Indeed, it's a repost of my comment from there. I just wanted to spare you all the trouble of wading through the other comments at Sailer's blog.


Posted by: Immigrant Group Quintilingual | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:51 PM
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I actually went looking over there to see if it was a repost. Boy, he's got some disturb(ing/ed) commenters.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:53 PM
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The proportion will definitely start increasing as the many graduate students here finish up and move on to lucrative endowed chairs.

Or marry people earning good money. The figure was for "family income" after all.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:55 PM
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as the many graduate students here finish up and move on to lucrative endowed chairs.

Send your well-endowed chair photos to nosflow@unfogged.com.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:57 PM
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261: Also relevant are 1) how many people are supported on the family income, 2) non-income economic benefits (e.g., health care and retirement), and 3) wealth.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 3:58 PM
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Essear means "well-endowed-chair photos".


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 4:01 PM
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(The address is actually poster name at unfogged.com, not commenter name at unfogged.com, though.)


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 4:02 PM
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232: Is it inappropriately revisionist to ask for a cleaning up or reposting of 232? As it is, it makes IGQ sound ToSesque (maybe not quite that bad, but trollish anyway).

Also, quintilingual? That's quite impressive, even if pig latin were counted as one of the five.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 4:03 PM
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264: Keep in mind, those are only the ones that make it through the moderation.


Posted by: Immigrant Group Quintilingual | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 4:04 PM
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261:And that is what makes it all so sad


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 4:12 PM
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Jeez, did people really go to Sailer'sssss?

Be careful with those embedded links, please. I value my innocence.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 4:14 PM
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Alternatively, you could go to Jeff Goldstein's and read 700 comments on how the judge that overturned Prop 8 is a big San Francisco homo and should therefore have recused himself.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 4:29 PM
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Sailer is evil wrapped around this somewhat withered core of an interesting mind. It's like the Gollum, he might have had potential but then he put on the ring of racism and he got all twisted. The site is a real anti-semitic hangout now too.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 4:36 PM
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Kagan is confirmed. 63-37.


Posted by: Tiny Hermaphrodite, Esq. | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 4:37 PM
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Great, another Jewrist.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 4:40 PM
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That was in honor of Steve Sailer (whoever that is), of course.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 4:41 PM
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And $26 billion in state aid is passed, and child nutrition. The Senate needs to go on recess every week.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 4:41 PM
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Why? Are they hurrying to get stuff done before the recess, or are we passing things willy-nilly without the Senate?


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 4:47 PM
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278: I don't know who he is either.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 4:49 PM
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277: The Catholic-Jewish takeover of the Court is complete!


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 4:51 PM
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282: Not a Brearly grad to be found.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 4:53 PM
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279: Oh that is good news.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 4:54 PM
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There will be a Jewish Pope by the end of the decade, just you watch.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 4:55 PM
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280: they are hurrying to get things done before the recess.

After we return, huge logjam --

--extension of dozens of expiring tax provisions
--small business bill
--estate tax
--Bush tax cuts expiring
--Defense reauthorization
--continuing resolution so gov't doesn't shut down
--energy bill?


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 4:56 PM
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and not complain about unfogged being unfogged

Not to pile on, but I thought the particular line illustrated well what gets the hackles up. When one offers a characterization of a set or subset of people while further indicating that one finds people so characterized to be unpleasant, and where, moreover, the set or subset being characterized includes people who likewise find the characteristics unpleasant, then member of the set or subset are going to take offense at being characterized as unpleasant.

No one likes feeling like they've been mischaracterized. And it's all well and good to say, "Well, if you feel you are not unpleasant, you need not worry that I'm talking about you." But you are talking about someone or several someones, and if no one knows who exactly you *are* talking about, then no one is able to evaluate whether you are being unfair in your characterization.

Sure, everyone can choose not to feel defensive (on behalf of themselves or of their friends), feeling confident that your characterization is absurd if directed at them. But then, if it is unclear exactly what you are irritated by and you are unwilling to point to anything specific, then the logical choice is to simply ignore whatever point it is you are trying to make. Surely, you consider your complaint worthy of attention or you would not voice it, right? And in asking for clarification, one is attempting to demonstrate a good faith effort to take your point seriously.

The idea of "unfogged being unfogged" is a bit hard for me to grasp, honestly. Does that mean people making cock jokes? People engaging in terrible puns? People being charmingly witty and insightful? People taking mean-spirited shots suggesting deeply held but obliquely expressed resentments? Warm and accepting support for individual struggles? Humorless hypersensitivity? Humorless insensitivity? At various points, "unfogged" is all of these things. Infuriating and seductive, unpalatable and irresistible.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 5:03 PM
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I heard from NPR several times this morning that Pelosi intended to recall Congress to vote on ... but now I can't remember ... something before the end of recess. Was that the state aid package?

"Recess" always makes me laugh, by the way: Congress on leave for 6 damn weeks to bounce a ball around the yard! Everybody needs a break.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 5:06 PM
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288 to 286.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 5:07 PM
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Does that mean people making cock jokes? People engaging in terrible puns? People being charmingly witty and insightful? People taking mean-spirited shots suggesting deeply held but obliquely expressed resentments? Warm and accepting support for individual struggles? Humorless hypersensitivity? Humorless insensitivity?

Preferably all of these things at once, in the same comment.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 5:12 PM
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My cock has cried three times before the morning. Life, you see, is like a box of chocolates -- perhaps a bad one, like a Whitman's sampler, with one mediocre taste after the next. Which, of course, is like the experience of talking to some of you -- you know who you are -- on this blog. If you don't know what I'm talking about, don't worry; unless you should worry. Thorn, good luck with your adoption, and M/tch, happy birthday. The struggle of abused women is not funny. Lose 10 pounds, all of you.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 5:18 PM
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287.last: For heaven's sake, Di, in this context it means unfogged being (white) UMC. Such that it talks about issues surrounding "the help" and talks about black people as though they're specimens, and about how the selective school for gifted individuals will experience lesser "outcomes" if it accepts a broader base of students.

This is really, really obvious to my eyes in reading unfogged. This is a place for people who have experienced the positive and helpful aspects of all these things. It happens to have been relatively unrelenting lately, and somewhat insensitive to those who might not have experienced those benefits.

I really don't feel like I'm saying anything shockingly new here. It's just been bugging me lately, that's all, and I've already said that there's no need to try to reconfigure the blog, because it is what it is, and I'm just being an ass.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 5:19 PM
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Maybe if you stopped being an ass, you wouldn't have to keep explaining yourself to people like me. As a nice side benefit, we wouldn't have to put up with your ass-y behavior.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 5:39 PM
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Perhaps this blog should perform some kind of outreach to obtain a more diverse participation. Upper-middle-class black people wouldn't cut it, though, nor would Asians who are concerned with selective schools, because those people are pretty white by definition.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 5:41 PM
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Maybe if you stopped being an ass...

You're really going to need to be more specific on the 'you' with that.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 5:43 PM
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293 to 292.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 5:44 PM
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Attempting to defuse the situation with a bad joke fail.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 5:47 PM
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Related to why I'm never going to be a best man again.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 5:47 PM
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Thing is, and I haven't been keeping up with threads lately so maybe I'm missing something, but I would totally get your point if the discussion of "the help" had revolved around, I don't know, how hard it is to find good help these days. But as I read, it seemed to be more a discussion of what are and are not the social justice obligations of well-intentioned lefties when hiring people who clean houses. The thread on black teachers -- and, to be fair, I can sort of see the "specimen" characterization -- but I read the underlying point as reflecting how lack of or limited exposure to black (or otherwise diverse) authority figures has a way of creating and reinforcing stereotype which are sometimes misunderstood cultural features and sometimes just plain weird. As for lesser outcomes resulting from broader admission, I don't believe anyone here was advocating that thinking as their own goal or ideal, but rather it wa4 descriptive of the existing state of things. Also, that last gripe is rather hard to swallow from the commenter who opined she couldn't have gotten as wonderful an education as she did at a mere state university. I got a rather fabulous education at U of State for a fraction of what one pays for Hahvahd. See also, "How do you like them apples?"


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 5:48 PM
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299: Understood.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 5:55 PM
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You know who wasn't an upper middle class white person? Read. Just saying.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:02 PM
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I wish people would stop the piling on. 293 in particular is just nasty.

Cute kittens, anyone?


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:03 PM
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302.2: I can tell more stories about my disgusting but adorable cats, if you like.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:05 PM
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I think the rise to centrality of the term/concept "privilege", in certain kinds of lefty discourse, is.....well, not to say the term is actively useless but I think it's way too central, and I worry that it fits a pop-psych style of social analysis that Americans love like crack. Invocations of privilege and reality TV go together. Judgment Theatre is our favorite show. "You're a bad, bad X!"


Posted by: (damn it Jim, I'm a) lurker | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:08 PM
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that last gripe is rather hard to swallow from the commenter who opined she couldn't have gotten as wonderful an education as she did at a mere state university

That might be pretty specific to the department, to tell you the truth: Hahvahd at that time was filled with leading lights in the field of philosophy, so I got lucky. On scholarship, also lucky.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:10 PM
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Well, Halford knows the key to shutting me up... Disgusting cat stories it is. The other night, my cat was apparently impatient with my cleaning of his box, so he just crapped on the floor next to it.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:12 PM
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303, further: For instance, the kitten just got a look at the crock that holds his food (I buy in bulk). His eyes lit up - you could tell he was thinking it was the biggest gosh-darned (he's still a baby, you know) food bowl in the world and that he was the luckiest kitten ever. (And then I put the lid back on and put the whole thing back in the closet and ruined the fun.)

(I wish I could tell jokes. That would be better than kitten stories.)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:13 PM
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Well, the downside of making unspecified accusations of cringeworthy levels of privilege and un-awareness is that everyone will have to check whether they fit the accusation. That may be an outcome that is fine by parsimon (per 162), but then, when several commenters chimes in to reply that actually, they were annoyed at being lumped in with the vagueness, it looks like "piling on."

If 293 strikes you as particularly nasty, MC, that's a shame. But I'm saying nothing stronger than parsimon said in her self-description. Moreover, since she understands the dynamic well enough to be frustrated at people explaining it to her and asserts herself and her grouchy mood to be the cause, she can stop initiating it.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:13 PM
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The idea of "unfogged being unfogged" is a bit hard for me to grasp, honestly. Does that mean people making cock jokes? People engaging in terrible puns? People being charmingly witty and insightful? People taking mean-spirited shots suggesting deeply held but obliquely expressed resentments? Warm and accepting support for individual struggles? Humorless hypersensitivity? Humorless insensitivity? At various points, "unfogged" is all of these things. Infuriating and seductive, unpalatable and irresistible.

I want to marry this blog, as soon as SCOTUS extends Perry to include text creations.

The blog, though, not the people. The people suck, and anyway not even Elena Kagan will allow group marriages in multiple states w/o benefit of clergy. That's an abomination.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:16 PM
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Better than kittens.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:16 PM
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I am cringeworthily privileged. It's pretty nice. I'd like it if everyone were cringeworthily privileged. And a pony that craps pot.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:17 PM
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Privilege? Ahahaha. Ahahahahahahaha. Ahahahahahahahahaha. Now get back to work.


Posted by: OPINIONATED EVERYONE HERE'S BOSS | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:17 PM
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Also, my first cat, who now lives with my parents, has a big, squishy lump on his back. Cyst? Boil? He's very old.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:18 PM
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312 killed the blog.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:23 PM
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I was once unfortunate enough to witness a small tapeworm exiting my cat. It was horrible, but if mentioning it is what it takes to bring peace to Unfogged, so be it.


Posted by: persistently visible | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:30 PM
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315: Oh dear god. Thank you - not - for bringing back memories of the time my childhood cats had worms. Holy batmoly, that was fucking disgusting.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:32 PM
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I love you.
You love me.
Feline bestiality.
With a knick-knack, paddy whack,
Give your cat the bone.
This old beast's glad you're home.


Posted by: Amorous Cat | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:32 PM
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I'd like it if everyone were cringeworthily privileged. And a pony that craps pot.

If everyone had a boat
They'd go out on the ocean
And if everyone was a pony
They'd go out on their boat...


Posted by: persistently visible | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:33 PM
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316: Cats, hell. I can remember having worms myself.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:33 PM
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Adorable kitten story.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:36 PM
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Once upon a time I brought home two cats from the animal lab of the med center I was working in. A couple of days later my (then) wife started screaming "WORMS!" as one of them coughed up a bunch of roundworms in front of her. I'll have to ask if the PTSD still lingers.


Posted by: Biohazard | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:40 PM
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319: I hope you enjoyed using the pronoun "we" when referring to yourself and the worms.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:40 PM
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322: We are not amused.


Posted by: Victoria Regina | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:45 PM
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We are still pissed about the Act of Union.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:47 PM
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And that our chamber pot looks like something out of Tremors.


Posted by: Victoria Regina | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:50 PM
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303: 302.2: I can tell more stories about my disgusting but adorable cats, if you like.

Dammit, I meant to say something about the butt licking. The cats need their anal glands squeezed out. That's why they're licking their butts - to get the junk out of the glands. A vet will do it for you.

max
['Something I learned about the odd way.']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 6:53 PM
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326: Yeah, trust me, I know about the anal glands,* and the vet showed me how to do it for them (since one of my cats has a real problem with it). And I do - so I don't think that's the problem, though I'll check with the vet when I take the kitten in to get snipped.

*It is very, very disturbing when your cat suddenly starts leaking an incredibly odoriferous substance all over you, and your bed, out of its butt. (The cats have it out for my bed. It's been peed on, anal glanded on, in the crowning glory, had shit tracked into it.)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 7:02 PM
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and, not in

(And of course all of those things happened when I was trying to sleep. And I forgot about the time one of them puked on me while I was sleeping.)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 7:04 PM
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326: my cat had the gland leakage thing happen... while stepping over my head.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 7:08 PM
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So: I ask for cute kittens and I get worms and anal glands? The unfoggedness of unfogged!


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 7:11 PM
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325: That's an image that isn't going to get out of my head very quickly.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 7:12 PM
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330: I tried to take a picture of the adorable kitten for you but he refused to stay still.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 7:14 PM
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I think I prefer Apo's shit-eating rabbits to the cats.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 7:27 PM
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do any of you laydeez know a place to get cotton slips?

Mine is sufficiently mature that I can no longer remember where I (mail-ordered) it from. However, assuming you don't care about fashionability, the Vermont Country Store?

This Century 21 talk confused me.

I was genuinely puzzled because in my world, Century 21 meant a real-estate company. It was nice to read on and see that according to Ned et al. this means I'm a Real American.

I see that I missed a whole kerfuffle upthread, and will just say that in my not-at-all-humble-opinion:
- This blog, as delightful as it can be, is an astonishingly privileged place
- The thread about black teachers made me distinctly uncomfortable, to the extent that I wrestled with posting a super-earnest comment thanking heebie for being brave enough to post something on race (seriously, if you've ever seen the crickets chirping on Pam Spaulding's race posts you gain new appreciation for how hard it is to throw something out there when it's a topic that most people avoid like the screaming meemies), and yet expressing my...errr...distinct discomfort with how the discussion played out. Kind of like watching a bunch of guys discuss abortion without any women in the room.

Oops, analogy. I ban myself.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 7:28 PM
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Does anyone recall that site that Apo once directed me to, where you can upload photos without having an account?

(I want to post a cute photo of my puppy).


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 7:34 PM
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Just now, I came this close to posting "Sexist"* on a friend's Facebook page. Adjusting to the part of the internet that isn't unfogged is hard.

*As a joke, the status update was completely innocuous.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 7:35 PM
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Adjusting to the part of the internet that isn't unfogged is hard.

And to life in general. Someone today told me, in all innocence, that in southern China people like to eat beaver. It was all I could do to avoid laughing or making a joke, and in context it would have been a bad thing to do.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 7:49 PM
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The people of southern China take oral sex very seriously.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 7:51 PM
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Someone today told me, in all innocence, that in southern China people like to eat beaver.

Was this someone under 13, over 80, or foreign? Because otherwise I don't buy the part in bold.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 7:51 PM
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339: Foreign.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 8:06 PM
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I wonder what animal serves as a slang term for vagina in southern China.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 8:07 PM
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340: In that case I think you owed the foreign individual an explanation of the phrase, as a courtesy.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 8:14 PM
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"explanation of the phrase" s/b "blow job"


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 8:19 PM
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343: Sexist.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 8:20 PM
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We once purchased for our cats a can of wet cat food that was labeled as 100% beaver. It's a bit head-spinning if you do anything but take it at face value.


Posted by: Nathan Williams | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 8:35 PM
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"explanation of the phrase" s/b "blow job"

It was a woman who told me this.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 8:41 PM
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344 to 346.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 8:42 PM
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Did she study at Oregon State?


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 9:22 PM
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348 - At Beaver College, formerly known as the Beaver Women's Seminary.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 9:53 PM
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287

... Infuriating and seductive, unpalatable and irresistible.

Irresistible to a very narrow segment of the population. Unfogged is not very diverse.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 10:41 PM
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You add diversity, JBS. Which is a good thing.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:02 PM
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Yeah, Mr. Shearer is obviously a diversity hire. I'm told they didn't even look at his test scores before approving him for 'regular commenter' status.

(It's a non-salaried position, James, with no pension and no cash benefits whatsoever. You do it for the glory, of course, or else for the greater good, perhaps).


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:21 PM
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301: I hope that your bringing up read wasn't a rejoinder to Di. That would be a cheap shot and cheap shots aren't your style.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08- 5-10 11:29 PM
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351

You add diversity, JBS. Which is a good thing.

Not all that much if you object to an UMC white monoculture.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:04 AM
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I'm not UMC. [Piping up in a small voice] I'm not even MC. Arguably not really Anglo-saxon, or Protestant, either. Judging by the propensity for sunburn and the ginger beard, definitely white, though. Take that, narrow Unfogged demographic!


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:13 AM
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Cheap shots are totally my style! But no, that wasn't meant at all as a rejoinder to Di, just a reminder of our last really nasty fight just as people seemed to want to start another one. Plus, I kinda miss Read (yes, I know what happened). I still think Read's "I will viciously pesonally attack one randomly-selected commenter per day" plan had a certain kind of genius to it.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:30 AM
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The problem with trying to drive away people who annoy you is that you also tend to drive away people you don't want to drive away. Possibly also that being annoyed isn't the worst thing in the world, but I don't know if I'd go that far.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:03 AM
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44: LB, do you have a link to that Yglesias post? I haven't been able to find it.


Posted by: Dave W. | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:55 AM
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(It's a non-salaried position, James, with no pension and no cash benefits whatsoever. You do it for the glory, of course, or else for the greater good, perhaps).

The greater goooood.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:04 AM
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I still think Read's "I will viciously pesonally attack one randomly-selected commenter per day" plan had a certain kind of genius to it

You'll understand, I'm sure, if I beg to differ.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:46 AM
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356: I miss read too, but some shit just isn't tolerable. It could be that a given set of intolerable behaviors has culturally exclusionary implications, but my bet is that insisting on sharing highly personal and negative judgments with strangers is what got her run out of Mongolia.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:58 AM
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358

Yglesias on elite college admissions. He sure does post a lot.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 6:26 AM
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361

I miss read too, but some shit just isn't tolerable. It could be that a given set of intolerable behaviors has culturally exclusionary implications, but my bet is that insisting on sharing highly personal and negative judgments with strangers is what got her run out of Mongolia.

This is ridiculous.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 6:28 AM
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This won't end well for anybody concerned, but may I suggest that Shearer check out Standpipe's blog?


Posted by: Situ Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 6:32 AM
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Not everyone shares the same view of the 'read' controversy, so I'm not really sure it's the wisest thing to revive, tbh.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 6:48 AM
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365: Agreed. Though anyone who thinks her thinks her deliberately vicious personal attack of me was justified can, respectfully, go fuck themselves.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:01 AM
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read was pretty funny sometimes.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:04 AM
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but then, so's (almost) everybody.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:04 AM
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Do we have a demographic profile of TOS? We might be more diverse than we realize.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:07 AM
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(And thanks so much, Halford, for dredging that up. Really. Good times!)


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:09 AM
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re: 366

Yeah, that wasn't what I had in mind, but some of the stuff preceding that stage. It's picking at old scabs, though.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:11 AM
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It's picking at old scabs, though

You never know what you might find underneath!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:16 AM
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It's picking at old scabs, though.

Indeed.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:17 AM
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Do we have a demographic profile of TOS?

A commenter on Holbo's blog the other day reckoned he'd identified it. Dunno, me. It showed up on CT recently.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:21 AM
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negative judgments with strangers is what got her run out of Mongolia.

I really need to go look at that particular fucking archive.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:56 AM
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If anybody wants old scabs, I've been throwing stuff like that between the back of my desk and the wall. Scabs, finger nails, and the desiccated remains of various nasal discharges. The desk weights several hundred pounds and has a back panel that goes clear to the floor, so no worries unless we move.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:59 AM
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376: I'm not clear on this, Moby. Can you access these "scabs, finger nails, and the desiccated remains of various nasal discharges" easily? Are you offering to mail them or are you just saying that we are welcome to come over and take them?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:05 AM
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377: If I had a stick with a ball of tape, I could probably get them by myself. If you come over, two of us could move the desk and then you could pick and choose with greater ease.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:09 AM
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Agggh. I wasn't actually trying to revive the read controversy, which IMO brought great shame on almost everyone involved on all sides (including me, and excepting Di, whose reaction at the time was understandable and who is still understandably sensitive, and no I am not interested in discussing that further). I was mostly just joking, obviously too obscurely. The intended message was: don't start pointlessly nasty fights over norm-policing, which is where, upthread, the conversation seemed to be heading, the reference was trying to defuse that a bit.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:12 AM
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And here I thought there was nowhere to go from adorable kitten anal gland discharge but up...


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:14 AM
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The thread about black teachers made me distinctly uncomfortable, to the extent that I wrestled with posting a super-earnest comment thanking heebie for being brave enough to post something on race (seriously, if you've ever seen the crickets chirping on Pam Spaulding's race posts you gain new appreciation for how hard it is to throw something out there when it's a topic that most people avoid like the screaming meemies), and yet expressing my...errr...distinct discomfort with how the discussion played out.

This is weird stuff to deal with. The demographics around here are fairly, albeit not uniformly, pale (although of course on the internet nobody knows your ethnicity unless you happen to mention it. Comments that assume, even if they're deploring, that the commenter/lurker population is all white are misguided. I think only parsimon's 292 did that in this thread, but I've seen it before in the past).

Avoiding the topic of race entirely seems wrong. Talking about racial stereotypes in a conversation where most of the people talking are white feels creepy, though, even if nothing said is particularly objectionable. I'm genuinely unsure if that feeling of creepiness is one that should be respected, though -- whether it's rooting in a recognition that the conversation is genuinely not a good one to be having, or if it comes from the kind of nervous avoidance of thinking about race that we should all get over.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:19 AM
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380: How sweet and naive of you to think!

"Unpalatable" indeed!

And, Moby, I'll be over in a few hours.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:21 AM
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Talking about racial stereotypes in a conversation where most of the people talking are white feels creepy

And yet is by no means the creepiest topic in unfogged discourse. It's not even in the top 10.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:28 AM
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You're just saying that because Moby hasn't offered you any of his scabs.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:30 AM
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383: Can you put together a list?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:31 AM
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Long before this week, Parsimon has lit into me for egregious privilege such as not having a roommate during grad school and not having moved many times in my life.

Also included in her "recent threads" accusation was the Justin Bieber thread, where I sat on my lofty throne and dared to accuse teenagers of being adorable.

I've been privileged as hell in my life, but somehow I'm more inclined to roll my eyes at Parsimon's accusations than take a long, hard look at my entrenched biases.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:33 AM
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381: I'm probably as guilty of this as anyone else, but thread drift in the sensitive/intense/earnest threads can make it difficult for me to keep talking on the original subject. I wish there had been more discussion about the black teachers post (and have a vested interest since I'm in a relationship with one who's apparently both a hardass and a complete pushover at various times in the classroom, which is not ideal but there you have it) but it seemed like it would be so much work to make it happen that I said my thing and when no one responded I left it at that. And of course that means I wasn't responding to other people. I don't know; that was one post that hits the sweet spots of what I like to talk about and I also found the discussion creepy in parts but still didn't engage.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:34 AM
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I'm drinking coffee on little food and less sleep, and am finding Moby's reference to his scab and booger filled desk affirmatively nauseating. Will I be able to hold down this horrible Starbucks food? We'll see. Thanks, Unfogged, for provoking a physical reaction.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:35 AM
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dared to accuse teenagers of being adorable.

Well, you have to admit that bob has a point, and everyone who's ever watched a Justin Bieber video is, essentially, a child molester. Myself, I remain pure -- I know his name from my kids, who despise him, but the rest of you perverts should be ashamed of yourselves.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:35 AM
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I just don't think that lusting after small children demonstrates privilege exactly. I was going for a more seedy-van-in-the-shadows vibe.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:36 AM
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Moby's reference to his scab and booger filled desk

It isn't my desk, but behind it. I'd be nauseated if I could see it.

OT: Every "Modern Love" column sucks so much worse than this letter. I'm guessing the NYT actually pays people to write so I'm starting to have doubts about capitalism and grocery store savings cards.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:38 AM
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389: If Roman Polanski ever watched a Justin Bieber video, he would totally not be a child molester. Fuck you!


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:38 AM
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390: What, heebie, you don't recognize and interrogate your seedy-van-owner privilege? Hmph!


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:38 AM
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People are just trying to talk honestly about their experiences.

Privileged people don't have authentic experiences, though. That's the whole point. And when they seem oblivious to that fact, their talk gets tiring, after a while.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:39 AM
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Comments that assume, even if they're deploring, that the commenter/lurker population is all white are misguided. I think only parsimon's 292 did that in this thread, but I've seen it before in the past).

Just for the record, I was making a different point -- that the spoken conversation and the "space" created in this thread was overwhelmingly culturally white. You don't even have to have an all-white commentariat to get there -- it just requires that the non-white people participating in the conversation are sufficiently familiar with majority-white spaces that they can code-switch as necessary.

The work of that adaptation is generally invisible to everyone else, but that doesn't meant people aren't doing it (or self-selecting away from the conversation, and heading for a thread about food or vacations, because they decide they don't feel like doing that work right now).

Avoiding the topic of race entirely seems wrong. Talking about racial stereotypes in a conversation where most of the people talking are white feels creepy, though, even if nothing said is particularly objectionable. I'm genuinely unsure if that feeling of creepiness is one that should be respected, though -- whether it's rooting in a recognition that the conversation is genuinely not a good one to be having, or if it comes from the kind of nervous avoidance of thinking about race that we should all get over.

Speaking as somebody who spends an awful lot of time talking about race, I don't think it's the *fact* of white people talking about race that's creepy. It's how it occurs -- context matters. You mentioned stereotypes above, and there is also sometimes* a weird frame in which (white) people talk about race as if it's a quality that other people possess.

There are lots of interesting (fun, silly, horrible) conversations to be had about racial issues. But it takes a deft hand to guide them, especially in groups that don't have a good shared understanding of the landscape. (Remember the paroxysms this blog went through over feminism? And that was WITH a ton of women here, speaking up.)

I really appreciated heebie's willingness to get a topic going, but was sort of torn about -- as I said above -- how the discussion actually went.

/end meta commenting.

*Anywhere;I'm not singling out Unfogged.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:39 AM
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To Martin's point, also touched on by Jackmormon and maybe Witt, it's been my experience that there's a lot of friction in terms of stereotypes and identity between recent-ish immigrant blacks especially from the Caribbean and straight-up AA black families. The physical discipline thing is a big issue and there's a lot of talk about how the problem with white people is the won't spank their kids.

I was actually wondering about this -- I couldn't quite tell from what you wrote where you see the points of conflict between recent immigrant blacks and African Americans.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:39 AM
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Possibly also that being annoyed isn't the worst thing in the world

Well, I'm going to have to think about this for a while.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:39 AM
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386: We should thank Parsimon for making the blog a little less "irresistible" so that we can occassionaly get something done.

Come to think of it, you should probably also feel a little grateful to me for the same reason.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:39 AM
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Thanks, Unfogged, for provoking a physical reaction.

I have been made obsolete. Guess I can go ahead and retire.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:40 AM
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everyone who's ever watched a Justin Bieber video is, essentially, a child molester

No, not a child molester. Complicit in a culture of child molestation, at worst.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:41 AM
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We should thank Parsimon for making the blog a little less "irresistible" so that we can occassionaly get something done.

No, no, I love conflict. I've just been at a conference and on vacation. I'll catch up next week and revive all of this.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:43 AM
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401: Yes, I knew as I was writing it that my comment was completely false. As you all know so well, that never stops me.

For some reason, the unpleasantness makes us more totally absorbed in the blog.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:48 AM
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396: I wasn't writing clearly at all and was sort of conflating certain points. I don't entirely know how to answer that because it's very complicated, but there's a push for obedience in recent-immigrant families and in many cases a deliberate rejection or devaluation of big parts of AA culture as "ghetto" or some similar concept. I wouldn't be surprised if their kids are often expected to perform more similarly to kids in Asian immigrant families than local black kids.

In the second sentence, I was talking about more generally one thing I see my black friends from either immigrant or native (for lack of better terms) backgrounds saying is that white people need to discipline their kids better and with more physical punishment, though I have a feeling the kinds of behaviors that prompt this comment are a little different in the two communities.

As another anecdote, I've been surprised on several occasions at church to hear someone say, "I don't let ANYONE discipline my kids, but I've learned to let my wife do that and she's the first person ever." To me, it blows my mind that these people are co-parenting for years before the step-parent is allowed to do any disciplining, and it's never been clear to me whether that means merely physical discipline or discipline more broadly. There's a strong mindset at least here that raising a child is the mother's job and the mother's job exclusively.

Anyway, I'm not making any of this clearer and I have to be on a conference call now, so I'll cut off and try to come back to this and make it semi-coherent.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:50 AM
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383: Each reader has their own list of special creepy moments, but surely masturbating to dead people would figure in most. And The Greatest Unfogged Thread Evar wasn't entirely uncreepy.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:51 AM
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Where is 396 coming from? Did a comment get deleted or am I hallucinating?


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:52 AM
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405: It's from my comment on the thread about strict black teachers.

(Stupid calls never start on time!)


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:53 AM
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C'mon, we can bring this up to 1000 comments! Almost at the hump!


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:53 AM
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The Resistable Rise of Arturo Unfogged

I dunno, I know LB hates it when people praise the blog too much, but I'd rather read a discussion about the minutiae of racial construction in the US on Unfogged than anywhere else. You go to those sanctimonious "progressive" sites where every fucking comment has to have 3 pages of disclaimers tacked on to it, and you're not even discussing race at all, but rather everyone's desire to establish a hierarchy of abasement -- some people constantly humbling themselves, poor miserable sinners that they are, and some people glorying in their ability to crush other commenters into submission with their perfectly articulated arguments for why the most important anti-racist action is excoriating other anti-racists for being insufficiently anti-racist. It's just a sadomasochistic passion play for those people, they don't actually want anything to change.

At least here people are able to make a good point once in awhile.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:54 AM
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Speaking as somebody who spends an awful lot of time talking about race, I don't think it's the *fact* of white people talking about race that's creepy. It's how it occurs -- context matters. You mentioned stereotypes above, and there is also sometimes* a weird frame in which (white) people talk about race as if it's a quality that other people possess.

This is all, I think, right (as is the point about white-identified space which is also true), and it's true that the conversation was kind of creepily tin-eared, in a way that I can identify, but don't have the knowledge or the chops to steer away from.

There's something, though -- let me pull out a huge and tortured and probably inapplicable analogy. Ogged was, while fundamentally wellmeaning, kind of a mess on feminist issues, which led to all those feminism argument threads: he'd post something kind of tin-eared and obnoxious, and the fur would start to fly. But his (and other commenters) willingness to wade in and say stupid shit, and then stay engaged with the ensuing brouhaha, made a useful space to work some stuff out. If Ogged had been more superficially appropriate and respectful on women's issues when they came up, and less willing to mix it up in defense of his entirely wrongheaded opinions (I'm abusing the poor man in his absence, he wasn't all that bad), I think this blog wouldn't have become as good a space for women as it now is.

I guess I'm thinking that where you've got a fairly ignorant community (as this is on race issues), there's a virtue to throwing stupid shit out there, if only in the hopes that it'll attract people to set you straight.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:57 AM
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Each reader has their own list of special creepy moments, but surely masturbating to dead people would figure in most

What? Masturbating to dead people is beond creepy; it's a debased perversion (even when it occurs inadvertently). But that's why it isn't allowed! I'm pretty sure no one here masturbates to dead people, or at least they don't talk about doing so. If we had comment threads discussing the various dead people that various commenters were masturbating to, then yes, I agree that would be top 10 creepy.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:58 AM
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As long as we're circling back:

"Recently promoted to become China's youngest major general, Mao Zedong's grandson says he aims for deeper involvement in the politics of the communist state founded by his grandfather, according to an interview appearing Thursday."


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:59 AM
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Privileged people don't have authentic experiences, thoug

Wait, what?


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:00 AM
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409 is exactly what I meant when I said "shared understanding of the landscape." How we got to that on this blog, around feminism, was through exactly the process you describe.

And *getting* there was possible for the reasons you describe, AND because there was a critical mass of women with a shared (enough) perspective among themselves to push back when somebody made a sweeping statement or Ogged threw out troll-bait.

Remember what gender conversations on this blog were like before there were a significant number of self-identified female commenters, and remember that there was a period of at least a year when I barely read it (except when linked by other bloggers) and kept avoiding the thought of posting because it felt sufficiently unfriendly.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:01 AM
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413: Maybe we could ban Doctor Slack from the blog for having opinions while black? It worked pretty well when Ogged did the same thing to Bitch.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:05 AM
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That's a good point, Natilo. I'm not a fan of the abasement race-to-the-bottom, and writing out the disclaimers is a skill not everyone has (mostly Witt and LB are the people I've seen write them in ways that don't make the rest of the paragraph too dull to wade through), especially since once you start making the disclaimers explicit, the one that gets left out is then assumed to mean something because it wasn't mentioned.

Since that shit is dull, it could be avoided by the presumption that in a forum where we've known each other for years, people are mostly bright, aware and well-intentioned if not yet fully enlightened although some of us may be. Issuing that kind of trust would save us all work and reading disclaimers. More importantly, it keeps us off the path of escalating self-abasement and sanctimony one-up-personship.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:06 AM
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I'm pretty sure no one here masturbates to dead people

This seems like the most significant area of total agreement here. There appears to be a general consensus to do all we can to prevent this from happening

In fact we could rename Unfogged, The Society for the Prevention of Masturbation to Dead People.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:06 AM
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411 cannot be good news.

This is not an easy landscape to negotiate though. If you're trying to do it in your fourth language it's probably harder, but y'know, basic intelligence should tell you there are universal limits.

Privileged people don't have authentic experiences, though

Jane Austen will fight you on that.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:09 AM
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I dunno, is the reemergence of Mao's grandkid in politics anything other than neutral? Dynastic politics is bad, generally, but China had that going on already, and I don't know anything about this guy that's worse than anyone else.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:13 AM
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416.last: That name doesn't lend itself to a catchy acronym. It won't do at all.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:15 AM
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419: You're right. Darn!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:17 AM
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What I found most weird about the flight attendant/stereotype thread was how completely foreign the experience of dealing with black people or thinking about these issues seemed to some folks here. I thought HGs original post was premised on a lot of lived experience (in the south, if I'm remembering right) with black teachers and parents, and a lot of folks reaction was, basically, wow, gee, no experience with that at all, how weird. But that's not a creepy racist reaction -- that awkward silence was the sound of a bunch of people realizing something real about their lives. I'm not sure why the right response is to shut that conversation down because OMG people here are so white.

Actually, I'd go further -- it's precisely the refusal to think about or own up to these issues in real life (or to do the more progressive variant, the hierarchy of masochism that Minne describes) that keeps people from thinking about the role that race plays in their lives and that allows white people to think that race is somebody else's problem. Having an honest conversation about the fact that a lot of folks have literally zero experience with black authority figures seemed like an actually genuinely enlightening thing to discuss, and a real issue.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:18 AM
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I think the rise to centrality of the term/concept "privilege", in certain kinds of lefty discourse, is.....well, not to say the term is actively useless but I think it's way too central, and I worry that it fits a pop-psych style of social analysis that Americans love like crack. Invocations of privilege and reality TV go together. Judgment Theatre is our favorite show. "You're a bad, bad X!"

I agree with this. Awareness of privilege is a good prophylactic against becoming the kind of asshole who feels obnoxiously entitled to all the stuff you've lucked into but to the extent it drives self-flagellation and self-censorship it seems pointless.

At the same time, though, I think Parsimon was getting a bum rap above for raising the issue, and as too often happens around here it led to some of the piling on that can make people reluctant to speak up freely.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:20 AM
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a lot of folks have literally zero experience with black authority figures

The president is black. Time to move beyond the denial stage, racist.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:22 AM
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423: What if we only listen to the president half of the time?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:23 AM
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how completely foreign the experience of dealing with black people or thinking about these issues seemed to some folks here.

Personally I don't deal with black people, unless I'm making some kind of financial transaction with them. If I meet a black person I talk to her. Is this wrong?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:24 AM
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I skipped most of this thread, but, hell with it, here I am anyway.
67
[Re: Harvard}: Rig the US News Poll so that they drop out of the top ten?

More like "stop rigging the US News poll to keep them on top". The US News & World Report college rankings should be considered a joke. They have changed their methodology at least once to ensure that Harvard, Princeton and/or Yale remain the top three (or two of the top three, or something).

261
The top 20 percent of U.S. tax filers have a family income of $110,000...I'll leave it as an exercise for the reader how many of us fit in that category. Some, definitely, but my guess would be not a majority.

Maybe not a majority, but I wouldn't be too surprised if it actually was, and almost definitely more than 20 percent of us. No need to declare income levels, of course, but yeah, I think we're a pretty privileged group by that measurement as well as the others.

Also agree with 409.


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:24 AM
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I just realized that vague accusations of "oh my, I detect privilege but I won't say who" goes directly to breaking down exactly that trust that people here are mostly doing their imperfect best. Since that trust is a very valuable asset, for removing the need for disclaimers if nothing else, I wish parsimon would get specific or cut that shit out.

I suppose the counter-argument is that no, race is too hard for people's imperfect best to be adequate, and besides, you can never have trust in an online commenting community because tone is too hard so disclaimers will always be necessary. But I'm not convinced by those yet.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:24 AM
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Also, we must never forget that this blog was founded by a Mexican.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:24 AM
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The president is black.

Can't know this for sure until we see his *real* birth certificate, though.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:27 AM
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I'm with you, Btock. 394 was awesome, made me laugh aloud.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:27 AM
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425: I'm not sure I follow you, but I think there might be a British English/American English tonal difference in what 'deal with' means. I read it as a fairly neutral equivalent to 'interact with in any manner' -- does it sound different to you?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:28 AM
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431: In British English, you'd use 'knocked up' instead of 'dealt with.'


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:31 AM
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I think he means "vote for for president."


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:33 AM
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lit into me for egregious privilege

So a lot of the discussion here is assessment of widely-held but unstated attitudes. Pretty often this starts with assessing something written by someone here. Front-page posts are fair game IMO. Being persistent about working through exactly what someone means and being confrontational are a pretty fine line to straddle.

There has IMO been a string of front-page posts that are SWPL or twee or something, as well as not so much with politics lately.

I do not find the idea of privilege useful. The way I prefer to think about unearned advantage is risk-- if you're born into a good place in society, and if you don't alienate the people who can help you, you don't stand to lose much. If you don't know how things work, don't have resources, or are hated by a minority of the population for being the wrong race or religion or whatever, you can't afford mistakes at all. Risk is an assessment of circumstances rather than of character. Character is usually best left unexamined, IMO, since slippery generalization is easy.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:34 AM
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If we had comment threads discussing the various dead people that various commenters were masturbating to, then yes, I agree that would be top 10 creepy.

Be the change you seek.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:35 AM
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431. I was being mildly snarky. To my ear if you deal with somebody you cope with them at best or get rid of them.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:36 AM
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Hmm, I'm torn between commenting that I am happy to engage with everyone here, because I've gotten to the point, after hundreds of threads and tens of thousands of comments where I can be pretty sure that almost everyone is arguing in good faith (or, if they're not, it's because they're having a bad day or something); or instead, commenting about the whole decline of progressivism theme.

But I dunno, it is weird to think about how big a wage gap there is between the richest and poorest foggers. If I got a full-time job with benefits tomorrow that paid $15 an hour, I'd feel like I was on easy street again. My main worry this week is that trying to go to the several Fringe Festival shows that my friends are in this year is going to completely torpedo my budget.

And, also, that my friend the famous Wobbly activist is finally going to be forced out of Sbux, and that she and her partner won't be able to visit in a few weeks. That would really suck. Stupid union-busting corporations!


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:37 AM
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436: I figured it was something like that.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:39 AM
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But I dunno, it is weird to think about how big a wage gap there is between the richest and poorest foggers. If I got a full-time job with benefits tomorrow that paid $15 an hour, I'd feel like I was on easy street again.

It is odd. Didn't you just (last year or two) move from the middle/top of that distribution (some kind of financial industry job) to pretty close to the bottom? That had to have been a pretty intense adjustment.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:41 AM
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That name doesn't lend itself to a catchy acronym. It won't do at all.

Alliance to Stop Self-Abuse to Persons Eternally Sleeping?


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:44 AM
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439: Well, more the middle than the top. I was making $23/hr plus bennies, and now I'm making just above minimum wage with no benefits. But the old job was killing me. New job is stressful too though, and I'm getting sick of being so broke.

Remember all those people I had to lay off? A bunch of them have already found better-paying, more career-advancing jobs. Even in this economy. I am a complete loser. Sacrifice my principles over and over again and what do I have to show for it?


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:47 AM
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I was making $23/hr plus bennies . . . Sacrifice my principles over and over again and what do I have to show for it?

Huh, like LB I would have thought you were making more, based on the vague hints dropped on the blog.

The odd thing, which I have experienced, is the way that a similar job can pay widely differing amounts in different organizations.

It is certainly convincing that salaries aren't based on the difficulty of the job. They may be based, in some way on "value" since successful businesses have a lot more money to pay people, but it does seem like luck (or worldly wisdom, to reference the earlier conversation in this thread) whether you end up getting well or poorly paid for any given job.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:55 AM
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Having written 445, I realize that it is valuable to me to work for an organization in which there isn't lots of money to fight over, since I think it makes for a better culture (though, from experience, I probably don't recommend working for failing businesses).

That has certainly played a role in my job decisions (not that I've turned down any higher paying jobs, but I haven't gone looking either).


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:57 AM
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I think I had Nat vaguely in the "works in the financial industry" box, which I think of as meaning that you make quite a bit. But of course there are jobs at all sorts of pay scales in any industry.

Man, though, minimum wage with no benefits is hard. God knows what to do about it in this economy, other than cling to it like glue while you look for something better, though.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:59 AM
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No-one really believes that salaries are in any way related to either the difficulty of the job, the financial benefit to the company that accrues from the doing of that job, or the benefit to society that the doing of that job brings, right?


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:59 AM
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445: Huh, like LB I would have thought you were making more

I know, right? It was an insanely stressful job, with a huge amount of responsibility and very little power, and I was making what a decently-placed admin with seniority, or a fast-food franchise manager makes.

I gotta say though, before it is deleted, that "buttfaggot allies" really makes my day. Now I have a sign to bring to the next Trans March!


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:00 AM
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As a member of the society to stamp out hyperbole, if I can substitute 'tightly or systematically' for that 'in any way', I'm right with you.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:01 AM
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literally zero experience with black authority figures

See, I have loads of experience with black teachers, but didn't share it because the thread was squicky. Now I can reveal that it's a lot like that scene in the wire where they round up all the corner kids in the auditorium: "I know your mother, Jamal. [Yes ma'am] Now she didn't raise no clowns, now did she? [No, ma'am]".


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:01 AM
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re: 447

Oh I'm not being hyperbolic. The best paid people in our society are largely parasitic scum. Most of the most crucial jobs are done by the very worst paid.

Of course in some jobs there is a fairly tight correlation between income earned (for the company) and income earned (by the employee), but, as a general rule, I'd be surprised if there's much of a correlation beyond that.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:04 AM
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No-one really believes that salaries are in any way related to either the difficulty of the job, the financial benefit to the company that accrues from the doing of that job, or the benefit to society that the doing of that job brings, right?

I actually do think that it's very loosely related. I mean, salary is based on what somebody will pay you to do the job and (I'd hope) that at least some of the people hiring have a reason for what they're offering.

The caveats and exceptions are, of course, too numerous to list, but I don't believe that pay is completely disconnected from "value to somebody"


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:05 AM
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get specific or cut that shit out

I don't know if she's here, but this seems pretty counterproductive to me, likely to lead to sniping. Insisting on carefully supported statements always would make this a much more boring place, pace 409, which post I basically agree with. Are footnotes really necessary to say that this place runs smug occasionally?

I've known relatives on hard times recently to benefit from a resume rewriting session, costs nothing but a little ego and doesn't take long. Good luck, not enough coming in sucks.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:06 AM
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to either the difficulty of the job, the financial benefit to the company that accrues from the doing of that job, or the benefit to society that the doing of that job brings, right

There's no relationship at all between salary and (i) and (iii), but there's generally at least some relationship between salary and (ii).

Accepting the stark truth of the concept that salary does not equal worth is one of the hardest things for an American to grasp, though!


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:07 AM
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The best paid people in our society are largely parasitic scum.

My working (unexamined) theory is that, in any society, there are always going to be some people willing to structure their lives, personalities, and careers around a single-minded attraction to making money.

Because of their single-mindedness those people will, on average, out compete other people for high-paying jobs, relative to their competence. Which means that you will inevitably get a lot of marginally competent (and completely mercenary) people in high paying jobs, and this is just a dead-weight loss inherent in having a society which (1) produces high-paying jobs and (2) allows some level of career choice and job mobility.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:08 AM
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I've known relatives on hard times recently to benefit from a resume rewriting session, costs nothing but a little ego and doesn't take long.

You know, that's true --people have some surprising resume blind spots. We've got a kid here a year out of law school, who's volunteering because she can't find a lawyering job. And she does good, competent work, and I'd hire her if I had a job to offer. But I got her resume to forward to a contact, and it had a couple of things that would have made me sort it out of a pile of possible hires on one look (failure of parallel structure in the prior job descriptions: three out of four jobs were described in resume-speak, and the fourth was in full sentences; and an "Interests" heading that made her sound like an airhead.) It was kind of heartbreaking thinking she'd been looking for a year with an unnecessarily bad resume in this climate.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:11 AM
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409 makes the point I was thinking about how to make a little earlier. I was mostly a lurker for the stages of it that I witnessed, but back in the days of Ogged, there were contentious threads about feminism that actually did a lot of good. These days most denizens of the blog are closer to being on the same page feminism-wise, nipple incident notwithstanding, and so those interesting discussions don't happen. And while those discussions might have pissed people off on occasion, I do think they were very useful; certainly, the ones I read made me pay more attention to the role of gender in the world around me, and more sensitive to the presence of the patriarchy.

It would be interesting if a similar thing could happen with race, but I suspect the commentariat is too racially uniform for it to happen.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:11 AM
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One of the big frustrations at my current job is actually that some of the people who are most crucial to the organization take home the least amount of money per month, while some people who make a comparatively minor contribution make the most. Of course, nobody makes a living wage, but still.

At my old job, there was definitely a plateau/ceiling/whatever: Lots of rank and file people making $35-$50K, with a huge variation of value/job difficulty/experience covered by that range; then just a very few people stuck in the $50-$70K bracket, and then a whole bunch of people who, with bonuses, made between $100-$500K per year, with fairly reasonable benchmarks for each salary tranche.

So, I guess I'd say it's not necessarily that there's no correlation between what a job is and what it is paid, but there's rarely causation.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:11 AM
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re: 452

I think even ii) is a fairly loose correlation, and breaks down completely when we think about the highest paid and the lowest paid. In the middle, and in roughly comparable jobs, there is some correlation, yeah.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:13 AM
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No-one really believes that salaries are in any way related to either the difficulty of the job, the financial benefit to the company that accrues from the doing of that job, or the benefit to society that the doing of that job brings, right?

I think these things are related, yes. There is a weak positive correlation between salary and the first factor, a moderate positive correlation between salary and the second factor, and a strong inverse correlation between salary and the third.

There are other factors in play too, of course; those three are far from determinative.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:13 AM
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It was kind of heartbreaking thinking she'd been looking for a year with an unnecessarily bad resume in this climate.

I found a job very quickly after I removed any mention of how physically attractive or repulsive I found each of my previous employers.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:14 AM
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Well, you have to admit that bob has a point, and everyone who's ever watched a Justin Bieber video is, essentially, a child molester.

Thank you for this, LB, although I myself might not go quite so far. There might be a few who watch/listen to JB because they appreciate the music, which only goes to show that contrary to conventional wisdom, there are worse people than child molestors or even Republicans.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:14 AM
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Unfortunately, I agree 100% with 457, thus producing comity. Can we get back to fighting about race or whether everyone here is a smug privileged fuck?


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:14 AM
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My first boss at a real job was hot and it's been downhill from there.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:14 AM
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One of the big frustrations at my current job is actually that some of the people who are most crucial to the organization take home the least amount of money per month, while some people who make a comparatively minor contribution make the most. Of course, nobody makes a living wage, but still.

This mirrors my experience working for minimum wage at a drug store.

At my current job, I can honestly say I have no idea what's going on at all. That has its advantages.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:15 AM
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There might be a few who watch/listen to JB because they appreciate the music, which only goes to show that contrary to conventional wisdom, there are worse people than child molestors or even Republicans.

Awesome, bob!



Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:16 AM
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It would be interesting if a similar thing could happen with race, but I suspect the commentariat is too racially uniform for it to happen.

That's the problem, isn't it. The dynamic depended on a combination of the shit-stirring and on the existence enough feminist women and men who were attracted to this place enough to engage with the shit-stirring, and I don't know that we've got that on race.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:17 AM
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465: Gah. I mostly agree with this, as I was saying upthread, but f I weren't working I could probably come up with some semi-tangential but still interesting stuff for us to chew on, even in the absence of that productive dynamic. Let me think and maybe I'll have some suggestions later in the weekend.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:20 AM
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Guest post! Email to me or heebie.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:21 AM
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We should totally, totally have a thread where everybody reveals their income.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:21 AM
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408: that is a perfect summary of what drives me batty* about such discussions in many places.

*I know, I know: flying mammalist!


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:22 AM
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Or we could do it like Secret Santa -- everyone draws another commenter to stalk, and posts whatever they can figure out about their income. It'd be like a game!


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:22 AM
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468: Even better, one where everybody guesses what everybody else's income is.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:23 AM
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It would be interesting if a similar thing could happen with race, but I suspect the commentariat is too racially uniform for it to happen.

Boy howdy.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:23 AM
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We should totally, totally have a thread where everybody reveals their income.

I still think this would be great. As I recall, I was the only salaried person who posted last time we tried.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:23 AM
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Or, let's have a thread where everybody pwns me.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:23 AM
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pre tax 73k household, give or take small, very small bonuses

2.5% raise this month, after no raise last year.

anonymous because of corporate policy


Posted by: Simone Weil | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:24 AM
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Or we could do it like Secret Santa -- everyone draws another commenter to stalk

I think you're doing Secret Santa wrong, LB.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:25 AM
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the commentariat is too racially uniform

Except where it counts.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:25 AM
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468: IIIRC we already did that. (Anonymously.) There were some frightening numbers. Of course, people might have been making shit up.


Posted by: Brock Landers. | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:25 AM
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473: I think I did as well.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:25 AM
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408, 469: Like, say, this from Ta-nehisi Coates' comments (I'm not linking because I don't want to start a blogfight, and his comments generally aren't like that at all, the below is an exception):

But, of course, this is a post that is designed to explicitly admit to subconscious racial prejudices, while really being an attempt to exculpate yourself from that unchosen prejudice. Right? I see this all the time online; it's a very common set of tropes. What is expressed on the surface level as self-criticism is ultimately a matter of self-aggrandizement because the self-criticism is expressed in a way that is designed to earn you plaudits for your honesty. (At a certain point, people come to think of honesty as the cardinal virtue, even when what one is being honest about is a set of undesirable traits.)

To be clear, I don't think that this is a damning criticism. I think what you're doing here is very common and entirely human, and I think it is a natural reaction to our frankly deeply unhealthy racial dialogues. I'm certain that I've expressed similar thoughts in the past and been guilty of the same things. But I think ultimately what this is is, first, a genuine and thoughtful attempt to explain some less-than-ideal racial thoughts and feelings on your part, and to deal with guilt over them; an implicit but blatant attempt to shed that guilt through the supposed superior honesty of expressing those thoughts; and finally a bit of inter-liberal jockeying whereby you show your superiority by allowing yourself to admit to some sort of racial prejudice, and in doing so demonstrate your honesty and self-critical capacity. (They all are too frightened to confront their racial baggage, but not me!) I have criticism only for the last, and then only gentle.

I imagine that the comments will quickly fill with praise for you for writing this, which you might see as supporting my point.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:25 AM
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Btw, for the curious-minded, I found this astonishing public record of Congressional staff salaries the other day. Bizarrely enough, it as the very first hit when I went looking for someone's job title.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:26 AM
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447 and 453 are right.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:27 AM
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And not just because it's the RULES, and trouble begging, but because it's nice to have somebody else pay for lunch once in a while


Posted by: Simone Weil | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:27 AM
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As are several other comments.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:28 AM
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478: It's embarrassing to admit that I don't know exactly offhand -- right around 80K, but I've forgotten the number. Buck's all over the place year to year -- he's got one salaried job at the moment, and then gets paid by his own business which varies, but I'm pretty sure he's heading for over 100K this year.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:28 AM
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posts whatever they can figure out about their income. It'd be like a game!

Strangely enough, you can get salary information about any California state employee from the Sacramento Bee's website. I suppose that's fair. The people pay us. But it feels a little strange.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:29 AM
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very small bonuses

Also, the concept of bonuses, and thinking of them as part of your income that can be counted on is foreign to me.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:32 AM
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Maybe this is a Californian bias, but to me the interesting thing about people's income isn't salary, but (monthly salary minus mortgage). I can't tell how secure people are unless I know whether they're house poor.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:33 AM
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Aren't most of the salary effects explainable on the low end by the supply of workers and on the high end by social networking?


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:34 AM
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489: No. Some correlation, maybe, but there are big differences between, and even within, employers for pretty similar work.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:37 AM
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I'm not sure why that would be more interesting than monthly salary minus student loans, or minus car payments, or minus any other sort of fixed bills.

If you're just using is as a general cost-of-living proxy, monthly salary minus median housing payment seems like it would be better. (Or, of course, you could use an actual cost-of-living adjustment tool.)


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:37 AM
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491 to 488.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:37 AM
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I earn more than the UK median wage, but , looking, I'm not much off the median wage for London [which is higher than the UK as a whole].

While I'm not an academic, I get paid on the same pay scale as academics [my position is 'academic-related'], so I make roughly the same as I'd make if I had a full time non-senior lecturing job. Which seems like shit-all living in London, but, nationally, is a decent basic income.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:37 AM
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488, 491: No, the interesting number is how many other people Bob is going to shoot before he gets to you.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:38 AM
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Aw heck, I don't know that this is a good idea but why not?

I am hourly (but with some benefits), so my income varies, it's generally mid 40s. Though I have a lot of flexibility to schedule my own hours which is a very nice element.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:39 AM
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Because people's houses are the most likely to be disproportionate. My UMC and MC friends don't seem to buy fancy cars and they went to state schools, so I their car and student loans are probably manageable on what I'd think is a professional salary. But if they bought their two bedroom bungalow in a bad neighborhood in 2005, they might be spending a $2500 per month in mortage, and I wouldn't have guessed that from the outside.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:41 AM
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Strangely enough, you can get salary information about any California state employee from the Sacramento Bee's website.

My salary is also listed there, but only because I put it in the classified ads.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:41 AM
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488: Benefits (presence or absence) are a significant factor as well.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:42 AM
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Someone in grad school made a remark once about the problems that are reinforced by seekrity-ness about salary and since then I talk reasonably openly about mine in contexts where it seems appropriate. I make about 52. Not bad, not great.

Oh and 454 isn't an interests section on a resume considered not the thing? I had one, once upon a time, and was advised by one or two people that it made me look like a dork. Of course that might be because of my interests.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:42 AM
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Just like they wouldn't guess that my mortgage is so low because I bought in 1998 when Sacramento was so sleepy.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:42 AM
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I used to make a lot. Now I make a lot less, although still an amount that ought to be more than enough, although the adjustment has been difficult and is still ongoing. I've started brown-bagging lunch every day for the first time since sixth grade. (Although clearly, if that's my great hardship, I'm doing fine, for sure.)


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:42 AM
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I don't know that this is a good idea

No! It's not a good idea! It's a really, really, terrible idea. That's why I suggested it.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:45 AM
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Of course, as a Brit, I don't have to pay for health insurance or any of that.

Housing costs where I live are so high that you couldn't even think about buying the flat I rent without an income in the region of 4 or 5 times median wage. Minimum. And you'd need 200,000 USD or the equivalent to put down as a deposit. Whereas when I lived in Glasgow and earned under median wage, I had a LOT more disposable income.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:45 AM
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Oh and 454 isn't an interests section on a resume considered not the thing?

I'd generally avoid it on a legal resume, but it'd be okay if the interests were interesting and impressive: "Discovered comet Smearcase-Johnson with backyard telescope" or something. She had something tantamount to "watching YouTube videos", which wasn't making her look good.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:46 AM
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Strangely enough, you can get salary information about any California state employee from the Sacramento Bee's website. I suppose that's fair. The people pay us. But it feels a little strange.

I share information on our firm's income with our lawyers who are getting ready to make partner even though such things are to be kept secret. I think part of the reason is that I spent the first 21 years of my working life as a government employee and my pay was a matter of public record (and in the Army, most people had pay tables and looked). I have not been socialized to keep such stuff secret. And because they want to know and it is important to them.


Posted by: Idealist | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:46 AM
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"Discovered comet Smearcase-Johnson with backyard telescope"

That's what they're calling it now, eh?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:46 AM
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488: Is rent/mortgage openly discussed in California? I always think of it as unique to New York that it is absolutely not rude to say "what do you pay for this place?" but I'm not sure if I'm imagining that.

There was a sort of funny scene in an otherwise unmemorable-enough-that-I-can't-remember-anything-else-about-it movie with Jennifer Aniston (Anniston? Hi nosflow!) and I think Kevin Bacon where they are about to screw and they're tearing PG-13-compatible amounts of each other's clothing off and she says, breathless, "is this place stabilized?!"


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:48 AM
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But if they bought their two bedroom bungalow in a bad neighborhood in 2005, they might be spending a $2500 per month in mortage

I know that is true, because I've read it in the newspaper. I still can't internalize it. The really scary thing is that about 1/2 of Pittsburgh thinks prices in my neighborhood are as absurd as I think prices in California are.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:49 AM
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No! It's not a good idea! It's a really, really, terrible idea.

This is true, for obvious reasons, and yet I also agree with Smearcase in 499. There is value in people being honest about money (whether that value outweighs the potential for bad feelings . . .)


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:49 AM
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I don't know about the US, but I've probably discussed with friends how much they paid for their places [rent or mortgage] quite freely, although I don't know how much most of them earn.

My monthly rent is about $2000USD + taxes + bills.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:50 AM
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I don't know why 490 contradicts 489.
"Interests: obsessively refreshing Unfogged threads during work hours" should probably be avoided.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:52 AM
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Is rent/mortgage openly discussed in California?

Slightly more than salaries, I'd say. I apologize before asking, but will ask if the purchase is new or the topic comes up.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:54 AM
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494:Aw, c'mon. After forfeiture, re-education camps for most.

Via a link at Angry Bears, I watched this PBS American Experience doc on the CCC last night. 63 minutes, very typical Burns-style. Made me cry at several points.

Provided many many thoughts. After threatening the bankers and conservatives in his Inaugural with "extraordinary measures", FDR, over the protests of most of his cabinet including Perkins, in three months had 250,000 strapping young men who owed their lives to FDR in camps in every state of the union. Umm, planting trees. Not integrated, but equal access for blacks and Hispanics.

But by the end I was pondering a different question, a question about privilege and advantage, what it really is what it means. The CCC graduates considered themselves "privileged" to have participated. The question came to mind if I would rather spend two years in the CCC or two years in Hahvahd.

The Greatest Generation were made, not born. We have lost so much since then.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:54 AM
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And further to 510, I simply couldn't buy a place to live anywhere near either where I live or where I work. It'd be financially impossible.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:56 AM
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513: The CCC planted pretty much every tree in Nebraska that isn't in somebody's yard.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:57 AM
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This is true, for obvious reasons

And for non-obvious reasons! And for reasons we probably haven't figured out yet!

Here's what's funny:
1. everybody who is willing to play will be in the range of the first few people who take the bait because
2. people who earn significantly over that range and aren't total douchebags aren't going to open themselves up to that, thank you, and
3. people who earn significantly less than that don't want to seem resentful or like failures, even though they may well be, meaning that
4. not only will it incur tons of resentment, it will incur tons of unspoken resentment, and nobody will know who resents it, except the people who do resent it etc. etc. until the community's torn asunder like as the moon in Galactus's maw.

To follow up my Galactus reference with a War Games reference, the only way(s) to win is (are) (1) not to play or (2) to be as homogeneous as possible. That's why it's the perfect thread.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:59 AM
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Of course, some say that planting a whole forest in what nature wants to be grassland is not very environmentally sound. The Nebraska National Forest looks a bit scruffy, like it knows it shouldn't exist.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:00 AM
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Did Sifu just call LB a "total douchebag"?


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:02 AM
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not only will it incur tons of resentment, it will incur tons of unspoken resentment

The lurkers hate me in e-mail?

I don't know that it's quite as bad as you're making it out to be. Anybody who has been reading unfogged obsessive enough to pay attention to my occasional comments about my job could probably guess my income +/- 10K.

The thing that strikes me, however, is that it's way less risky for the regular commenters to reveal their salary because they've already given enough information about themselves to make it possible to guess. It does pose a bigger hurdle for the occasional commenter or lurker who hasn't already talked about their job.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:05 AM
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518: LB, being one of the first few to take the bait, has ably set the high-end of the range, meaning that a significant subset of law-talkin' commenters are now going to (rightly!) sit on their commenting thumbs, because they work for big, private firms.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:05 AM
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they work for big, private firms.

s/b "big, firm privates." It's been way too long since a penis joke.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:06 AM
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514 - which is why we live in Reading ...

We own a house pretty much because C's grandpa gave us the deposit, and so we were able to buy our house as soon as we got married in 1996. If we'd had to save up a deposit, we'd have been screwed, because we sold our house (in Oxford) 4 years later for double what we'd paid for it. And bought our house in Reading (1.5 times the size, better in our opinions in other respects too) for the same amount.

You all know I don't work. I charge £20 an hour for my tutoring (will be a bit more for my new tutees in September), which is more than a cleaner would get round here.

C earns mid 60's (GBP). Which doesn't feel like much divided by 6 of us, and when I look around our house I'm pretty sure his colleagues with partners who also have proper jobs live a lot better than we do. But we're better off than most of our friends.


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:07 AM
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Would Galactus eat the moon? I have a vague memory that he actually needed planets with life on them (so that the Silver Surfer would steer him away from planets with intelligent life, but toward those with lush forests, etc.). Could be wrong, though; it's been a while since I was really expert on such things.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:09 AM
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way too long... penis

Hurr hurr hurr. I make Butthead money.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:09 AM
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Suffice to say I disagree with 516.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:09 AM
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526

And for whatever it's worth: 60, with ~1.2 going to rent each month.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:09 AM
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527

Would Galactus eat the moon?

Maybe by accident, like a shark mistaking a surfer for a seal?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:10 AM
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528

The Nebraska National Forest looks a bit scruffy, like it knows it shouldn't exist.
I've heard that much of what was once prairie only stayed that way through human intervention, but I have no idea if that is true.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:12 AM
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525: I didn't actually mean to call any commenters douchebags. Nobody is! Reveal all, you lunatics! Let the internet breathe easy in full knowledge of your compensation package! Don't listen to me!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:13 AM
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488: Is rent/mortgage openly discussed in California? I always think of it as unique to New York that it is absolutely not rude to say "what do you pay for this place?" but I'm not sure if I'm imagining that.

I ask pretty directly among friends. Almost all of us rent and as we're jockeying for new places it's an important thing to know.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:15 AM
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531

English people talk about house prices all the time. It'd be rude *not* to ask.


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:16 AM
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3. people who earn significantly less than that don't want to seem resentful or like failures, even though they may well be, meaning that

I've never made more than $20,000 a year, and many years not even close to that. Right now this doesn't bother me so much but I suspect that by the time I'm 30 it's going to hurt. (Hopefully I'll have a real job by then.)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:17 AM
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One interesting measure of household income here (which ttaM won't know about) is Child Tax Credit. People will talk about how much CTC they get, and then it's quite easy to estimate what income that equates to. We've just this year stopped getting it, which I don't usually say to people in real life.


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:19 AM
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534

Reveal all, you lunatics! Let the internet breathe easy in full knowledge of your compensation package!

On the bright side, the tone of the thread is much less contentious now than it was earlier.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:20 AM
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I can be the total douchebag! I've been practicing law for 20 years. Annual compensation has ranged between $300 and 750 K in the past decade. We do contingent fee stuff, so it could fall to zero in any upcoming year. Student loans paid off long ago. I never particularly wanted to make lots of money, it just sort of happened.


Posted by: unimaginative | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:20 AM
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I've never made more than $20,000 a year, and many years not even close to that

!!!! I guess that's not surprising for being in graduate school -- and you're in your mid-20s, right -- but, still. Incredibly hard to get by on that without parental help.

I am totally not playing this game, but if you want to get stalkerrific you can figure out my salary readily enough from published reports about what big firm mid-level non partner lawyers make in LA. I will say that my mortgage payments are ridiculously high and that my house is near underwater, so I do have a house-poor feeling. Poor me.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:23 AM
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537

Jeez, we all resent you now! You fool!


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:24 AM
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538

537 to 535. I'm resenting Robert even more for not playing. Does underwater mean literally or does it mean something else?


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:26 AM
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536: It's the norm for grad school, which is why I feel silly even mentioning it. And we can look forward to fantastic well-paying jobs as soon as we graduate....oh, wait.

And I'm 28...so, unfortunately, no longer mid-20s. I did have one year where I was an assistant manager at a movie theater* but surprisingly that paid less than grad school.

*I am clearly super ambitious.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:27 AM
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528: I've heard that also. The theory being that delicious buffalo wanted new grass, so the natives torched the land to burn the old grass which kept trees from growing (and must have been pretty much the most fun they could have their loincloth on since they didn't have booze or horses).

My guess is that applies to the parts of the prairie further to the east, where there is more rain. The Nebraska National Forest is in a very dry area and constantly wants to burn just from lightening.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:27 AM
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541

Didn't we have a post-your-salary thread a while ago?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:28 AM
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538: I read that something like 1/2 the houses in California are underwater just a bit. If it were colder, they'd freeze their toes off.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:29 AM
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535: holy crap! That's real money. What does it feel like?

We should let unimaginative post a long front-page screed about how it's vital to renew the upper-income tax cuts.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:30 AM
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Earnings, I should say.

anonymous because of corporate policy

Aren't such policies illegal?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:30 AM
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I bill hourly, and it could fall to zero in any upcoming year. But then, I'm a graduate of Montana State, so what can I really expect in life anyway.

On the subject of prior discussion, I'll note that I live in a city (and county) that is 94% white. "Privilege" has to have a different meaning in such a community, or else it becomes cartoonish.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:30 AM
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546

More than 10 percent of California homeowners are 50 percent or more underwater. That's at least a quarter million in the hole at the typical bubble prices.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:31 AM
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538, but seriously: "Underwater" means the mortgage is for more than the likely sale price of the house.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:31 AM
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541: Yes. But it's fun! We should do this every month!

(Do we have a tag to indicate a sarcastic tone? What would the appropriate emoticon be?)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:32 AM
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Now's your chance to get in on the ground floor in patronizing me, unimaginative.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:33 AM
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550

I think talking about house prices and especially rent prices is totally open. Talking about income and wealth, not so much.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:33 AM
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551

Wait wait wait. I don't mean this in an uptight, crankypants way but I didn't "take the bait." I just answered the question because why exactly* are we not supposed to talk about it? I think a lot about how much I make and how ok I am or am not with it. I talk about it sometimes with other human beings. I in fact have blug about it. Don't go making me all self-conscious that I've been a sucker or an exhibitionist for doing so, or I will...I will...be sad for a few minutes or something.

*the fuck


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:34 AM
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552

My income for the coming academic year will be ca. $23K, and I pay $515/mo in rent.

NOW YOU KNOW.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:34 AM
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541: Right, and as I recall Ogged (pbuh) felt that it was a very bad idea; Witt did not concur. That's all I remember about it.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:35 AM
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Now's your chance to get in on the ground floor in patronizing me, unimaginative.

I would think that having him as a patron would be better for you than just having him make sarcastic comments about your career choices.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:35 AM
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I see I was mistaken in thinking that no one would stoop to make such an obvious joke.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:36 AM
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What type of cases do you do, unimaginative?


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:36 AM
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552: how do you live in the Bay Area and pay $515 in rent? Do you live with ten people in a group house? In a family member's basement?


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:37 AM
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551: well, insofar as I was trying to bait people into doing something I thought was a bad idea, you did. You may be (are!) less convinced than me that it's not a good idea, in which case more power to you. I just think that unfogged, insofar as it's a "community" is likely to be very sensitive to weird status-oriented things like salary, as it has been in the past to things like SAT scores or (f'rinstance) private schooling, or city of origin. Because salary on its own is so meaningless, and yet is so perfectly meaningful, sharing it in the contextless way one must share things on the internet allows for very few obvious (to me) positive uses to be made of it.

Which isn't to say it isn't interesting. I'm very interested in what you all make! I'm just no-fucking-way taking part.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:38 AM
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557: Don't live in the basement of a California house. That's the first part that goes underwater.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:38 AM
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s I recall Ogged (pbuh) felt that it was a very bad idea

IIRC, ogged thought it was a bad idea because he worried that it would be non-conducive to the idea that "on the internet everybody is equal" or something like that.

It does feel like, compared to that era of unfogged, there are fewer new commenters dropping in, and there is even more of a sense of everybody having known each other for a while, so I think the situation is different.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:39 AM
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I live with four (actually now three but the fourth ought to be replaced by the Master Tenant soon) other people in a house next door to which the landlord, who is not cupidinous, lives. The master tenant has been here ages and ages without a rent increase.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:39 AM
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562

Or we could revive the grand tradition of sending in cock-pictures.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:40 AM
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563

I'm just no-fucking-way taking part.

Hardly fair of you.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:40 AM
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IIRC, ogged thought it was a bad idea because he worried that it would be non-conducive to the idea that "on the internet everybody is equal" or something like that.

Well, right. It introduces the "friends with money" and/or "one broke friend" complications into an environment where they needn't have a place.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:40 AM
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Sifu feels uncomfortable that his salary changes by tens of millions of dollars from day to day because it's based entirely on stock options for his high-flying tech startup.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:41 AM
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566

It has also happened that people send me tit shots. I'm just sayin'. As long as we're talking about reviving traditions.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:41 AM
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567

563: I know, right?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:41 AM
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565: sometimes the killer robots knocks over the bank, sometimes the bank knocks over the killer robot.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:41 AM
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569

I see I was mistaken in thinking that no one would stoop to make such an obvious joke.

I admit, I'm glued to this thread, at the moment, waiting to see what will happen with it. So I've got nothing better to do than make jokes that belong on standpipe's blog.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:42 AM
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564: I don't get that. Those complications generally arise when you are actually physically interacting with each other, which often requires money. I don't really see how that can be quite the same problem online. (I do get the idea that there could be resentment, etc.; if I made real money I might be less likely to post about it.)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:43 AM
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What we don't have here AFAIK is people who make/have made serious money from equity in a business. We do have the range from minimum wage to very good professional incomes, and I'm pretty much with Sifu in thinking that putting names to points on the range isn't necessarily comity-enhancing.

Also, please use more drugs. It's good for our economy.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:43 AM
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572

What we don't have here AFAIK is people who make/have made serious money from equity in a business.

How do you know?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:44 AM
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Those complications generally arise when you are actually physically interacting with each other, which often requires money. I don't really see how that can be quite the same problem online.

There's always the danger that at a meetup one person will not-so-subtly imply that another should buy more pizza.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:44 AM
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574

I wish I knew how to read.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:44 AM
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575

What 572 should have said is that of course I don't know that either, but it wouldn't surprise me in the least.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:45 AM
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576

573: Yes, if I ever make it to a meet up you can buy me a slice, since you make slightly more than I do.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:45 AM
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On a slightly connected but not really note, can someone explain the etiquette of round-buying given that people drink at different rates and therefore aren't all up for refills at the same time? I was bitching about this last night, largely because while I attempted to buy rounds of drinks at the UK meetup, I mostly failed; at the times I wanted a refill, there was never more than one or two other people with a near-empty glass.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:46 AM
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578

All drinks are always already on unimaginative!


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:47 AM
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579

577: that's why you buy a round of shots.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:47 AM
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A little more than $36K per year with pretty good benefits. At my previous job, from 2006 to 2008, I made about $22K with almost non-existent benefits.

481
Btw, for the curious-minded, I found this astonishing public record of Congressional staff salaries the other day. Bizarrely enough, it as the very first hit when I went looking for someone's job title.

Interesting. I Googled my girlfriend soon after we started dating and found her salary at that site or one very like it and I remember thinking that she made just a little bit more than me. Looking at it again now, though, she makes more than just a little more than me.

Re: prior post-what-everyone-makes threads, I have the feeling that there was one more recently than Ogged has been seen around here. Not sure, though. I'll try to look it up, even though I think Sifu might be right. Although I'm contributing to it anyway.

As for being insular though, we've attracted a few new people here and there or induced lurkers to delurk over the past few weeks, haven't we? Maybe not all that many, but there's still some growth and churn. Feel welcome, new people! Unless you make less money than nosflow. Then you suck.

Kidding! Kidding! Sorry.


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:47 AM
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581

572: I don't, hence the "AFAIK". You may have. I don't remember comments from others that pointed that way, but there's lots that I don't remember.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:48 AM
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572: I don't, hence the "AFAIK". You may have. I don't remember comments from others that pointed that way, but there's lots that I don't remember.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:48 AM
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at the times I wanted a refill, there was never more than one or two other people with a near-empty glass.

I think I know how to read, and I think this implies that LB was drinking faster than the UK-based commenters, and I'm not sure I can credit that.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:48 AM
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584

574, 575 to 581, 582.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:49 AM
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585

in thinking that putting names to points on the range isn't necessarily comity-enhancing.

I guess I really don't get this. I don't resent anyone for the salary they have. (Ok, Goldman Sachs people, a little.) Salaries are not a zero sum game. They're not keeping me from making more money.

(I was just having this conversation with a friend who is significantly better off than me - and most people - in regards to whether or not to tell people they had bought a second home. This is one of those slices of human emotion/behavior that I totally fail to comprehend.)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:49 AM
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543: the word is "comfortable." Not worrying about the little stuff is very pleasant, especially when the little stuff isn't always so little (e.g. when the car was totalled I was able to replace it the same day). I don't really get much pleasure from having expensive stuff. My highest goal is to retire fairly young so I can lurk at free web sites during the day without guilt. And maybe read a novel or two.

In my professional life I know many people with much much more money than I have. The weird thing about them is how much effort they put into increasing their own wealth, mostly by working hard. Many of these folks keep running their law firms well into their 80s. I don't get it.


Posted by: unimaginative | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:49 AM
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It would be hard for really rich people can't have personal friends who are poor, for fear that the next question would be "ummm, can I have some money?". I know that would be on my mind when visiting my buddy's private island.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:49 AM
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Unless she was drinking slower, at a rate that just happened to put her between the other attendees when she finished. That I can believe.

*phew*


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:50 AM
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583: of course not. As long as LB was drinking out of phase with the bulk of the UK commenters, whether faster or slower, that would have been the case.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:50 AM
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573
There's always the danger that at a meetup one person will not-so-subtly imply that another should buy more pizza.

Or that people who might otherwise go to meetups won't, because they're worried about their extreme wealth or poverty showing.


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:50 AM
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591

We should see if the insurance company will give us some money if we replace "AFAIK" with "AFLAC."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:50 AM
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Apologies for the double post.

575: There are enough techish sorts around that it wouldn't surprise me a lot, but the general slant of the place is academic/professional/bookish.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:50 AM
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I continue to think that it's weird that academics in the humanities make so little. Whatever you do can't possibly be more useless than what I do.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:51 AM
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445 to 593, I guess.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:51 AM
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It would be hard for really rich people [who? because they?] can't have personal friends who are poor, for fear that the next question would be "ummm, can I have some money?". I know that would be on my mind when visiting my buddy's private island.

Indeed.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:51 AM
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at the times I wanted a refill, there was never more than one or two other people with a near-empty glass.

This is why chicks don't buy in mixed company, unless they are total boozehounds. Ya gotta keep up, even if it means chugging, bro.


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:52 AM
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597

You're a postdoc, right essear?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:52 AM
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592: there are also people who've worked in finance. In general I'd say the actual distribution of occupations here is much wider than the distribution of revealed occupations. For instance, ogged is a barber.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:52 AM
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583: She did say she appreciated the help in being escorted home. Or to the hotel in this case.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:53 AM
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There's always the danger that at a meetup one person will not-so-subtly imply that another should buy more pizza.

Or that one person will stare longingly at a piece of pizza and have to be cajoled into taking it.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:53 AM
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601

588 got in just under the wire.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:53 AM
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583: of course not. As long as LB was drinking out of phase with the bulk of the UK commenters, whether faster or slower, that would have been the case.

I think you need some visual aids. I want plots of alcohol consumption vs. time for various commenters.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:53 AM
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Fine. About 70 without furloughs; 60 with furloughs. If I pass the Professional Engineer exam this fall, I'll get about a $17K raise. You'd think I'd study for it.

My mortgage is $800/month.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:53 AM
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558: Fair enough and no, I don't think it's a bad idea. Though that might be because I make neither enough to be the object of searing envy nor little enough that it drags my self-worth down too terribly/evokes pity.

The thing is it's been on my mind a lot because a coworker just got a job doing the same thing but for a great deal more money. And I get resentful and start thinking "why do social workers make so little money?!" until I hear her on the phone saying to people "well I had to leave. They pay us nothing here" and then suddenly I'm indignant and think "check your financial privilege!" Well, not that exactly.

Anyway, slightly less five-dollarishly, I find I'm interested in what problems arise if we know what folks around us make and whether those problems are good reasons not to discuss it or, I am obviously going to say, good reasons to discuss it.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:53 AM
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605

Ogged has my dream job, in fact.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:54 AM
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606

The obvious solution for meetup-related financial disparities is for grad students to slip away and leave the state without paying.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:55 AM
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598: True dat.

586.last: I am beginning to think that I am in danger of becoming one of those people who likes their job and keeps doing it longer than economically necessary. At least some higher-salaried jobs are also more interesting, pleasant, and autonomous, which of course is why people have to be paid more money to be willing to take them.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:56 AM
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Though that might be because I make neither enough to be the object of searing envy nor little enough that it drags my self-worth down too terribly/evokes pity.

And, you know, that's probably the case for the vast majority of commenters here. Which -- if they all weighed in -- would only make things harder on the exceptions. Except the rich exceptions, obviously, who should just shut up about their problems.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:57 AM
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About 70 without furloughs; 60 with furloughs

I can see why you would be so fond of the furloughs. That does sound like it could be a very-close-to-ideal balance of work and time.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:57 AM
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I'd just like to say, should any of the commentariat actually work at Goldman Sachs, I don't resent you. Not at all. I do wonder what it's like to work at a job where your firm's name is shorthand for being bloodsuckers. That's got to be weird. (I actually have wondered this about the lawyers, too. I would have a hard time dealing with that sort of negative stereotype.)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:58 AM
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I drink pretty fast, which is silly of me because my alcohol tolerance keeps on dropping so I end up drunker than I'd like to be. Last night my bridgeplaying was a scandal and a pity -- after a couple of beers I couldn't tell the difference between hearts and diamonds. I screwed up one hand so thoroughly we had to toss in our hands and redeal.

So I might have been outpacing the UK commenters -- I'm not sure.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:59 AM
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Which -- if they all weighed in -- would only make things harder on the exceptions. Except the rich exceptions, obviously, who should just shut up about their problems.

Tweety, I promise to not ask you for money. Ever.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:00 PM
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I make enough money that I always have slightly nicer than average pants* but not enough that I don't have subpar shoes.

*Trousers, not underwear.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:00 PM
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You're a postdoc, right essear?

Right. For comparison, in grad school I made $30-34k/yr.

At post-seminar dinners and whatnot in my world, it's often the case that faculty subsidize the meals of grad students (like, faculty pay $40, postdocs pay $30, grad students pay $10, or something). Meetups could adopt a similar policy, but sorting out who pays how much could get awkward.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:01 PM
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I drink pretty fast, which is fun at meetups silly of me because my alcohol tolerance keeps on dropping so I end up drunker than I'd like to be.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:01 PM
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604: One problem (and this is an "afflicting the comfortable" kind of problem, of course, so not to be avoided) is that for the people on the top end of the income distribution, like me, it becomes wickedly embarrassing that I think of money as tight, like, pretty much ever.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:01 PM
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617

I continue to think that it's weird that academics in the humanities make so little. Whatever you do can't possibly be more useless than what I do.

The crappy pay of academics in the humanities is probably more amenable to McMeganish explanations than most pay disparities.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:02 PM
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I keep ending up with mildly frayed pants. But at least I have shiny shoes at the moment. If Moby and I swapped, at least one of us could look respectable.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:02 PM
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619

Someday I'll own pants.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:03 PM
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614: Yes, I should have made it clear that mine was about the norm for a humanities graduate student at a state school. I know that grad students in the sciences at my institution make more than I do but I think it's more in the $25,000-27,000 range.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:03 PM
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621

My pay is somewhere in the low-40K area and I assume that getting additional education to be able to work in anything that would interest me would leave me making little if anything more than this, which is one argument against grad school. We're in a situation where there's a second mortgage, but I think the two combined would be under 1K/month if we weren't paying extra on them. I appreciate living in a relatively low-cost area.

It's also the kind of area where if you want to buy a round, the bartenders give you tiny plastic glasses to give to the people who aren't ready for theirs, which they can then cash in for real drinks at their leisure. I've never been a serious enough drinker elsewhere to know whether it's a tacky local norm or a wider one.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:04 PM
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622

615: Yeah, at a couple of days short of thirty-nine, you'd think I'd have learned to manage my alcohol tolerance by now. Luckily, I'm not the kind of drunk who gets in knife fights, mostly.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:04 PM
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623

621.last: I have never heard of that, but it is both ridiculous and solves all of my problems. I love it.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:05 PM
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620: I was a social science graduate student at a state school. We barely got $1,500 a month before taxes when you taught you own section. It was a minor, but not irrelevant, contribution to me not having a Ph.D.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:05 PM
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625

Luckily, I'm not the kind of drunk who gets in knife fights, which makes for disappointing liveblogging mostly.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:05 PM
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626

621.2: I, for one, haven't encountered that, but it sounds kind of brilliant.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:06 PM
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627

One other thing, if we're talking about money -- don't get divorced (i.e., don't get married)! Supporting two households totally blows and will likely keep me from ever "feeling" rich. And the only thing worse than being the higher-earning spouse is being the lower-earning spouse.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:06 PM
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628

621.2 only works if they don't let you leave the bar until you've cashed them all in.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:06 PM
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629

I should probably put on some pants and go earn my good but not outrageous salary.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:07 PM
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630

627: I told them, but they never listen.


Posted by: Ghost of John Emerson | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:09 PM
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631

I want to point out, before this goes any further, that my household income this year is likely to be around $50K, and I am covered by health and dental benefits from someone else's job. It's just that I, personally, am not contributing too much to that. Also, there's the house, which cannot possibly be underwater, although getting all the equity out of it might be tricky in a forced-sale situation. However, having a housemate paying a moderate rent is right now the difference between feeling broke all the time and being broke all the time.

So, nu, it could always be worse.

I really don't mind talking about money at all. Partly that's working in the financial services industry for awhile, partly it's just irritation at Midwestern stuffiness, and partly it's a political thing.

Mortgage: $800/month

710 verbal, 660 math btw, and 99th percentile on the PSATs. And what did it get me but heartache?


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:10 PM
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632

it becomes wickedly embarrassing that I think of money as tight, like, pretty much ever.

Happens fast enough when young couples are paying for a big mortgage ($2-4,000 per month) and day care for two ($2+00 per month). That's not even rare among people I know.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:11 PM
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633

Supporting two households totally blows and will likely keep me from ever "feeling" rich.

You can make supporting two households seem easy if you have the right attitude. Go hit on women until you're support three households and paying for the implants of an aspiring actress.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:11 PM
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634

For some reason I have no objection to people posting income but test scores seem like a terrible idea.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:12 PM
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635

I should have made 633 much more sexist, on honor of ogged.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:13 PM
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Also, I'm commenting too much because I don't want to write the two measly paragraphs I promised someone I would put together after lunch. Get back to work, lazy bastard self.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:13 PM
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Huh. I'd bet the distribution of test scores is much flatter than the distribution of income -- no outliers on the top end because everyone's clustered against the top of the scale, and I doubt any outliers on the low end would still be feeling bad about it.

But it's boring, so people shouldn't do it.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:14 PM
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638

Send your college transcripts to ben@unfogged.com!


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:15 PM
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628: The worst-case scenario is that the bar gets paid for drinks that are never consumed, which sucks for the person who bought the round but is no skin off the bartender's nose. I know the really hole-in-the-wall lesbian bar here has a limit on how many you can pile up (3?) or else people come in just before the end of Happy Hour and buy for their whole night. I do not do this, because even though this relationship got a little U-Haulesque, neither of us lives up to the stereotype that lesbians are bad tippers and unfriendly to bartenders and the like.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:15 PM
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556: securities fraud and related complex financial litigation, mostly but not entirely class actions.


Posted by: unimaginative | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:16 PM
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I would also bet that people here are likelier to think of their test scores as reflecting something important about themselves than they are to think the same concerning their income.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:16 PM
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642

640: plaintiff's side?


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:16 PM
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643

To 632, I dunno, it feels pretty tight to me, even though by any reasonable standard I earn a ridiculous amount of money for not doing that much. I don't know why I'm revealing this here, but, between the mortgage, private preschool with unbelievably-ridiculously-named- children, and child support I have $6800.00 going out the door every month on the first. I still lead a pretty charmed and wonderful luxury-filled life, and it's ludicrous to bitch, but I don't really see that tightness feeling stopping unless I jump up a notch on the lawyer tree.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:16 PM
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644

neither of us lives up to the stereotype that lesbians are bad tippers and unfriendly to bartenders and the like.

Do I need to get out more or is this stereotype news to others?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:17 PM
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645

stereotype that lesbians are bad tippers and unfriendly to bartenders and the like.

God, there are more stereotypes in the world than I'd ever dream of.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:18 PM
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644: That too may be local, but it's shared by every bartender I've ever talked to about it. (Which wouldn't have been many, but they bring it up.)


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:18 PM
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647

644: news to me.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:18 PM
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648

641: The combination imparts far more information.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:19 PM
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649

Lesbians are the Indians of wherever Thorn lives.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:19 PM
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650

645: you're that type.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:19 PM
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651

One other thing, if we're talking about money -- don't get divorced

amen, brother.

I promise at the next LA meetup I attend to buy more than one round.

The crowd I with run with here in Pasadena includes a lot of dynastic wealth. I'm glad some of these guys have good investment advice, 'cuz they ain't the smartest tools in the shed. I have had one childhood friend go from merely wealthy to famously wealthy, and it has made him a total asshole, especially since all he did was get born right. The rich are different.


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:20 PM
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646: I've known waitresses and female bartenders who have felt that women were bad tippers. But that was because they were trying to use physical attractiveness to increase tips from me(n).


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:20 PM
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653

I'd heard of the stereotype, although never seen anyone living it out in action.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:21 PM
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654

I guess it depends on which bars you go to. I mostly go to punk bars, and pretty much the only people who can be counted on to tip well are people who have themselves worked in the service industry most of their lives, so, old punks. Some of whom are lesbians.

Sorry if I offended any of you with my mediocre-to-okay test scores. My grades have never been as good though, if that makes you feel better. I'm just a good test-taker. But I can't earn money for shit.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:23 PM
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I'd heard of the stereotype, although never seen anyone living it out in action.

It is a pretty niche part of the porn market.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:26 PM
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But I can't earn money for shit.

But you can, if you have enough of it.


Posted by: Opinionated Farmer | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:26 PM
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604.last: I find I'm interested in what problems arise if we know what folks around us make and whether those problems are good reasons not to discuss it or, I am obviously going to say, good reasons to discuss it.

I don't strongly weigh in on one side or the other on that question -- this has been interesting so far, after all -- but if nothing else, knowing that someone makes significantly into the 6 figures puts a possible slant on whether his or her views on, say, health care reform should be credited. Not because the high earner is a jerk in some way, but just because what $7,000/year for health care means to me is very very different from what it means to someone making a great deal more.

So I find political implications in all of this. N.B. I would not go about ignoring what someone has to say because of his or her salary. Yet it is just the case, in my experience, that higher-income people sometimes don't quite register the economic concerns of lower-income people.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:26 PM
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658

Two Girls, One Tipjar


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:26 PM
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659

646
That too may be local, but it's shared by every bartender I've ever talked to about it. (Which wouldn't have been many, but they bring it up.)

This seems more than a bit tactless of bartenders. "Hey, don't be like all those other lesbians - fork over the dough!"

Personally, if they said that about me I'd tip well that one time and not come back. But if every bartender says that I guess you don't have a choice if you like going to bars at all.


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:28 PM
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660

642: always. Can't get rich on hourly pay.


Posted by: unimaginative | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:29 PM
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659: To clarify, my partner put herself through grad school by bartending, so she has lots of bartender friends (and shares this bias) and that's why we've had a lot of conversations with bartenders, not because they're trying to wrangle more change.

I think it's because it's mostly the lower-earning lesbians who go to the (generally somewhat scuzzy) gay bars around here and they want to smoke and play pool and drink cheap beers, and they don't think they should have to pay much for that privilege. I suppose swanky lesbians go to the martini bars; I've never asked the bartenders at the place where they make their own bitters whether there are any stereotypes there.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:31 PM
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The crowd I with run with here in Pasadena includes a lot of dynastic wealth

Not so much from Pasadena, but I know a fair number of these people, too. They are especially infuriating to have as Facebook friends. Oh, you're now on your fifth straight week of posting from the ranch in West Texas or the summer home in Santa Barbara or in Maine or from St. Tropez or whatever, with your insanely fit bodies and super attractive children and no work whatsoever. Awesome. Thanks for the status update.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:31 PM
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663

I pay $415 in rent, for half of a two-person share in a great neighborhood.

I am an ex-graduate student. I have gotten by every year of my life with some combination of less than $20,000 a year or/and parental assistance (one exception: worked a year as a 28K salaried employee at a regional theater).


Posted by: Criminally Bulgur | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:32 PM
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664

||
So one of my FB friends, a young woman whom I've always liked, but don't really know too well, posts constantly about how she can't get a date, how upset that makes her, and how awful men are. Today she highlighted something from a newsgroup where some Nice Guy (TM) said "unless he looks like V/ggo Mortenson, the average guy can reach the age of 40 without being asked, out of the blue, for a date" ("Straight guy" is, I think, pretty clearly implied here.) She was very offended, I infer because she has mustered up the courage to ask men for dates and been rejected.

I feel bad for her, but jeez, at some point this stuff begins to veer into Nice Girl (TM) territory. (Especially when there's a fellow who she might reasonably have fun going out with who is constantly leaving FB comments that suggest that he's into her. [Not me, but rather someone who is more attractive, holds more power and makes much more money than me. He is kinda eccentric though.])

I dunno. Can't save people from themselves.
||>


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:34 PM
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660: The business lobbies hate you guys with a white-hot, burning passion.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:34 PM
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661: Having spent a good amount of time waiting tables and tending bar, I'm a ridiculously good tipper. But it is kind of ridiculous, when you think about it, to give someone $1 just for opening a bottle of Budweiser for you, at least as ridiculous as tipping someone for handing you a latte. Still, it's the custom, and I follow it religiously.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:35 PM
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Yet it is just the case, in my experience, that higher-income people sometimes don't quite register the economic concerns of lower-income people.

There's nothing surprising about that. Heck, six years ago (when I was ~ parenthetical's age -- I feel old now) I was making half of what I make now. As my income has crept up one of the benefits has been that I no longer have to devote mental space to certain financial calculations.

I am occasionally surprised when I think about how easy it is for something to go from the category of "expense I have to think about" to "I know I can afford it, so I'm not going to think about it." (I remember having the feeling that buying a movie ticket was a noticeable expense, which seems crazy now, but was only mildly crazy at the time).


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:35 PM
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666: Especially if you're making minimum wage and there are 30 other people in the bar tipping the one bartender. This could get us back to the maid conversation pretty quickly, so I'll stop.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:36 PM
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664: Nobody has ever asked me out and I like like V/ggo Mortenson if that's the name of the guy who played Denethor.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:36 PM
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668: I justify it by reminding myself how annoying it can be to be the only sober person in a crowd of drunk people.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:38 PM
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I remember having the feeling that buying a movie ticket was a noticeable expense

Not the movie ticket, the popcorn. You need an SBA loan ferchrissakes.


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:39 PM
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672

669: Aragorn. Stop trolling.


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:39 PM
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673

s/b "I look like V/ggo Mortenson"


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:39 PM
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665: And they send a fair number of us to Club Fed for the first year or two of retirement. OK, only those of us who commit serious crimes in pursuits of millions. But that seems to be a bunch of us. No one at my firm so far.


Posted by: unimaginative | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:40 PM
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675

674: Bribing judges is a bit of a problem worthy of jail.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:41 PM
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676

I like like V/ggo Mortenson

669: You know what they say: "like like can lead to looooove."


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:43 PM
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673: Are you sure, 'cause I thought maybe you like liked V/ggo Mortenson. "V/ggo and Moby, sittin' in a tree..."


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:43 PM
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678

Dammit.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:43 PM
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679

Aragorn. Stop trolling

Still prettiest


Posted by: Legolas | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:44 PM
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680

Step off, bitch. He made his pick.


Posted by: Arwen | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:45 PM
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681

678: Sorry.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:46 PM
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682

You weave-sporting tree-humper.


Posted by: Arwen | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:46 PM
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having the feeling that buying a movie ticket was a noticeable expense, which seems crazy now, but was only mildly crazy at the time

Given that in the last 6 years, the price of a movie ticket has increased by at least 50 cents a year, sometimes more, this has actually proven to be a real problem. I went from seeing movies all the time (for free) to now considering it a real luxury to spend at least $10 (after like, 4 pm) for something, that, if I wait 6 months, I can just have included in the $15 I pay monthly to Netflix and watch a whole bunch of other stuff too.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:46 PM
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684

682 to 681.


Posted by: Arwen | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:47 PM
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685

I'm sensing a Middle Earth rap war developing . . . .


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:48 PM
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to now considering it a real luxury to spend at least $10

Family of four, plus popcorn, candy & drinks is more than what my wife and I spend on date night for the two of us, even with a decent bottle of wine at a good restaurant. And they wonder why no one goes to the movies.


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:50 PM
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687

Legolas is the long blond-haired dancer-like elvish archer, right? Hott.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:50 PM
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688

This is more in the rap opera vein, but picture the opening scene of the Lord of the Rings:

Gandalf (to Bilbo): Go shorty, it's your birthday . . .


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:51 PM
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689

Fucking elves.


Posted by: Opinionated Nice Dwarf | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:52 PM
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690

687, 689: Racists.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:52 PM
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691

Don't make me link to the source. If you haven't read it yet you will lose all productivity for the rest of the day. Assumes LOTR affinity.


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:53 PM
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692

I've never asked the bartenders at the place where they make their own bitters

Didn't you say you live in the sticks? Or was that just my blameworthy inference from deep redstatia?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:53 PM
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693

Fucking elves.

Yes, please!


Posted by: Opinionated Aragorn | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:53 PM
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694

687: I'm telling you, that hair isn't his.


Posted by: Arwen | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:53 PM
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664: There's really no way to sound good complaining about how you can't get a date, is there. Man or woman, it always sounds bad.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:54 PM
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696

Gandalf v. Balrog rap battle, as previously linked.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:55 PM
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697

691: It was terribly funny, wasn't it?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:55 PM
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686: Oh, I know. I worked at a movie theater for 7 years. Prices blow. I especially loved it the day I realized that the large popcorn cost more than I made in an hour. (Which I always refrained from pointing out to the customers who complained endlessly about the prices - I get complaining about it in a forum like this or to friends, but for god's sake, don't do it to the theater workers.)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:55 PM
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699

I want to know what LB and TLL are talking about.

696 cont'd, I don't think it had white-on-white text that had to be highlighted to read in the original.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:56 PM
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700

But it's totally worth it to be able to see cinematic masterpieces like Salt.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:57 PM
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701

Yeah, if I had one piece of advice for aspiring film reviewers, it would be: Do not buy your food at the movie theater.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:58 PM
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692: We're less than a mile away from the downtown metropolis, but across the river that divides the state line. So life here (I believe I'm in Brock's state, if that helps) looks much redder than it is. So I live in a small town, but I can also hear the fireworks from the stupid baseball stadium at night.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:58 PM
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703

You've been warned.

http://www.ealasaid.com/misc/vsd/


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:59 PM
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704

(You'd think they could hire some humanities Ph.D. for $1.95 an hour to string the chases and fight scenes together, but nooooo.)


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 12:59 PM
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705

I'm pretty sure concessions is the only thing theaters make money on. They break even or lose money on the films, but those are the essential bait to get people to come in and buy very expensive food and drink.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:00 PM
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706

but I can also hear the fireworks from the stupid baseball stadium at night.

The Pittsburgh Pirates have fireworks after every home game and this is clearly hear from my house some 6 or 7 miles away. It used to annoy me, but now when I hear the fireworks, I just go look at the web to see how much they lost by.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:01 PM
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707

Stupid baseball stadium?? Your stupid baseball team, the Bolsheiviks, is currently having an unexpected run of success! You should totally go to a game. Meanwhile, my Dodgers have made my life misery for the last month.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:01 PM
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708

705: Yes, this is true.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:02 PM
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709

694: I'm telling you, that hair isn't his.

Uhhh. Uhm. Well, uh, okay, though this is depressing, and I admit I wondered when he showed up in Pirates of the Caribbean with completely different hair and didn't look nearly as nice. Huh. Boo.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:02 PM
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710

705 -- Yep.

Also, it's awesomely pathetic that the Pirates have fireworks even when they lose.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:03 PM
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711

my Dodgers have made my life misery for the last month.

How the hell do you break your hip after you've been tagged out?


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:04 PM
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706: Our team used to only do it when they won, but that doesn't happen often enough (though apparently this is a decent year) and they now have a fireworks extravaganza every Friday home game. The dog is not a fan. Our metropolis now boasts more reality tv stars on its football team than any other. It's not as if we lack for culture!


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:04 PM
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713

710: I think they only have fireworks when they lose.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:06 PM
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714

707: It's a very nice stadium. I'll go some breezy night, because it's an easy walk from our house. I find baseball pretty boring and don't drink beer, but knitting keeps me amused.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:07 PM
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715

V/ggo Mortensen is an impressive art photographer. (Also, googleproofing seems... misguided, here.)


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:11 PM
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716

715: I couldn't remember if it was Veggo or Viggo, so I just copied the "/".


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:13 PM
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717

I find baseball pretty boring and don't drink beer

You could learn to keep score.


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:14 PM
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718

V/ggo Mortensen went to Stuffwhitepeople Like University. I knew a lot of people who had him in their classes. Probably their best looking graduate since Kirk Douglas.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:17 PM
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719

Viggo as in vigorous.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:17 PM
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720

It sounds like an Edwardian patent medicine: Drink Viggo for Vigor!


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:19 PM
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721

My mortgage is $800/month.

WHAT? Seriously, how can that be?


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:20 PM
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722

It sounds like an Edwardian patent medicine: Drink Viggo for Vigor!

IYKWIM,AITYD


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:25 PM
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723

536: Published reports about what big-firm mid-level non-partner Chicago lawyers make would likely give you an absurdly inflated picture of what I make. And yet, I live more than comfortably and, while I have to fret big-ticket outlays (eg., home improvement, maintenance), I never think twice anymore about buying lunch. I spoil my kid rotten. I can hardly complain.

Except when partner-level colleagues with high-earning spouses start griping about hard times and not being able to retire at 65 as they so richly deserve.


Posted by: DK | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:25 PM
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724

I think she bought more than ten years ago, before prices went up in Sacramento.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:25 PM
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725

721: I think it's called "the midwest" or something.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:25 PM
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726

Ari (and NPH), see comment 500.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:28 PM
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727

721: The house next to ours is on the market for 99,900, which the info paper claims gives you a $400 monthly payment if you can put 20% down. Ours is a little nicer (both two bedroom, one bath, two-story plus slightly sketch basement) but theirs has a hot tub and is quite livable.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:28 PM
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728

721, 724: Oops, was that Megan? I thought it was Natilo. And yeah, adjusting for differences between Sacramento and here, it's consistent with what we paid for our first house here in 1999.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:28 PM
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729

726: Right, she bought it from someone who was really sleepy and so left off a zero.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:29 PM
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730

I think she bought more than ten years ago, before prices went up in Sacramento.

Apparently there's a wide range of prices in Sacramento.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:29 PM
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731

One problem (and this is an "afflicting the comfortable" kind of problem, of course, so not to be avoided) is that for the people on the top end of the income distribution, like me, it becomes wickedly embarrassing that I think of money as tight, like, pretty much ever.

This. I'm on the high end of the (revealed) spectrum, but I feel like I've got less disposable income than most people I know (including here). I could be wrong about that, of course (and it partly depends a lot on how you define "disposable"). But it's tough to talk about without giving the impression that we're just spendthrifts.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:31 PM
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732

730: Wonder what the foreclosure auction on this place will bring.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:32 PM
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733

Thank you, neb. I feel...something. Not better, I guess, but less bad. Having bought at the absolute peak of the market (like, to the day) has caused us some consternation these past couple of years, such that, despite making LBish money, we often feel strapped and always worry that if we have to dump our house for some reason, we're going to find ourselves in a spot of bother.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:36 PM
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734

731: Well, one of the main differences is kids. Most of us who have revealed incomes on the lower side don't have any.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:36 PM
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735

703 is very good and this is the first I've seen it (I think) despite the fact that I was "Arwen."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:37 PM
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736

731: No complaints at all, but I'm also in demographic to which Halford's monthly nut looks reasonable.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:37 PM
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737

+ the


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:39 PM
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738

130k+ spouse a little more.
1600 monthly mge, comfortable equity, public school.
Delaying divorce partly because setting up a second household will not be cheap.


Posted by: Abe Lincoln | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:39 PM
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739

738.last: Yow. That's got to be unpleasant. Hopefully things are tolerably low-conflict while you're waiting.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:41 PM
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740

738: Plenty of people live happy, if cramped, lives in mobile homes. If you are in a hurry.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:42 PM
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741

Delaying divorce partly because setting up a second household will not be cheap.

I hear this all the time of late. I hope being old is more fun than being middle-aged. But I sort of doubt it is. Oh well, at least it's all got to be better than being young was.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:42 PM
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742

I don't think I understand 736.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:43 PM
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743

731: This. I'm on the high end of the (revealed) spectrum, but I feel like I've got less disposable income than most people I know (including here). I could be wrong about that, of course (and it partly depends a lot on how you define "disposable"). But it's tough to talk about without giving the impression that we're just spendthrifts.

I feel similarly (not so much about people here, as about RL friends and acquaintainces). I find myself wondering if we manage our money very badly, or if people I know are terribly in debt.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:43 PM
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744

re: 522

Yeah. Moving to London hasn't been the wisest move financially.

I think I came across as a bit snooty about Reading at the meet. Which wasn't what I meant. I just meant [through a mild beer haze] that I've never met anyone _from_ Reading, just people who end up living there for work. Which is why, oddly enough, it's one of the places in SE England I've been out boozing the most.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:44 PM
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745

Delaying divorce partly because setting up a second household will not be cheap.

Since buttinskies are all the rage here, let me ask if there are kids? 'Cuz if you can tolerate delay, maybe you don't need to split. If no kids, put the jerk's stuff on the curb.


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:46 PM
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746

745: I'd take "public school" to mean that there are kids, or at least kid.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:47 PM
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747

746: Or Abe is married to Justin Bieber.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:49 PM
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748

Yes, of course, deferring a custody dispute and providing stability as long as possible are the main reasons for delay. Just saying there's more to wealth than money.
739: thanks, arctic rather than volcanic.


Posted by: Abe Lincoln | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:49 PM
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749

re: 611

I'm pretty sure I bought at least one interstitial round because I was drinking faster than most. I tend to be around median pace among my drinking friends, but I have one friend who is so ridiculously fast he usually buys drinks in between rounds for himself as there's no way for rounds to work otherwise.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:49 PM
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750

742: Just agreeing, or commiserating, more or less. We have more breathing room now than we did when we were younger, but expenses do have a tendency to keep up with income, especially in expensive places.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:52 PM
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751

Good catch. Helps to be able to read, doesn't it. Not knowing the particulars, of course. Not to be Dr. Laura, but split households are even harder to run than unhappy intact ones. Frying pan, fire sort of thing. And the last thing anyone should rely on is advice from pretend internet friends.


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:52 PM
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752

748: Best wishes. Sorry for the mockery. At times I keep forgetting that people here are real.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:52 PM
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753

And good luck Abe. That really sucks.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:53 PM
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754

731: Kids. A stay-at-home spouse or a spouse who makes a lot more than you. Big mortgages or high rents. Living in places with high costs of living in general. They're all totally reasonable reasons to worry about money more than your place in the income percentile ranking might suggest.

Thriftiness is a rational response to your conditions to an extent, but it's also an attitude, a personality trait and/or a learned habit that isn't broken quickly. Despite a roughly 60 percent pay increase from my last job, I think I have roughly the same levels of spending and worrying about it. Spending a little more, sure, and worrying a little less, but not 60 percent less.

Of course, I have little sympathy for someone with a "so hard to find good help these days" or a "keeping up with the neighbors" attitude, but I never get that sense from most people around here. Either I'm oblivious or you're sufficiently humble to be "good people" despite raking in the cash or you hide it well.


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:53 PM
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755

On the other hand, my parents stuck together for about twentyfive years of arctic, I'm not sure quite why but I think the expense and hassle of setting up separate households was a part of it, and they came out the other end very unhappy -- I think it would have been worth an awful lot to them to split up in the late seventies rather than the mid nineties.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:54 PM
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756

Abe, sincere best wishes to you and your family in what sounds like a really unpleasant time.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:55 PM
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757

Good luck to Abe. I've been hearing a bunch of similar stories, too. Who knew that 2007 was the year to get divorced.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:56 PM
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758

If it helps, Abe, that's about what I was earning and a little below our mortgage at the time (spouse earning much less). Turns out establishing a second household was less painful (for me) than expected. Given current interest rates, you may be able to get further than you think, with less of a pinch through a cash out refi. Worked for me.


Posted by: DK | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:58 PM
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759

Who knew that 2007 was the year to get divorced.

My wife heard rumors, so I had to switch the gym where only old people go.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 1:59 PM
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760

There's really no way to sound good complaining about how you can't get a date, is there. Man or woman, it always sounds bad.

And yet I kept that blog going for three years.

My mortgage is $800/month.

WHAT? Seriously, how can that be?

Well, you see, I'm paying it down faster so I can finish off my mortgage early.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:01 PM
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761

If only Abe were in Sacramento....


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:03 PM
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762

Sorry, dumb and uncalled for.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:03 PM
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763

You weren't actually complaining that you couldn't get dates -- dating was happening, just not being productive.

Complaining about not being able to get a date is more like me talking about college, and blaming my romantic invisibility on a series of very bad haircuts. And a personality like a wounded bobcat, but mostly the haircuts.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:04 PM
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764

No worries; I thought your comment was by-and-large right and funny. 'Sides, I've changed a lot since that blog, so I don't mind making fun of my old personality. (Or my current one.)


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:06 PM
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765

Well, you see, I'm paying it down faster so I can finish off my mortgage early.

And now you're just rubbing it in, Marie Antoinette.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:07 PM
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766

Thanks for the kind words; life's not terrible, not setting myself out for pity, but divorce came up as part of finances so I mentioned it.
758. That would work if we cooperated and were both thrifty, who knows what will actually happen. 755. Yes, too bad there's not a breakeven date stamped somewhere.
764. a married man is not a great catch, I understand.


Posted by: Abe Lincoln | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:09 PM
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767

By "wounded bobcat" do you mean "cougar"?


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:09 PM
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768

Yes. I was. I'll buy you a drink at Pub Quiz next time. Sunday?


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:10 PM
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769

764: don't be so self-deprecating.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:11 PM
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770

do you mean "cougar"?

Not when I was in college, no. Just a tendency to lurk in corners, sulking about how nobody loved me, and then snarling at anyone who interrupted my precious sulking time.

I suppose I'm the core cougar demographic now, but Buck gets all cranky when I bring home cute young men to toy with, so I've been cutting back.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:12 PM
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771

Buck gets all cranky when I bring home cute young men to toy with

Because he is a feminist.


Posted by: Idealist | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:20 PM
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772

Hey, Idealist.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:22 PM
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773

766.2 -- Luckily, I had a very thrifty and cooperative... Oh, wait. Well, at least it's arctic and not volcanic where you're at!
766.last -- No, indeed they are not. But you are in that prime marketing pre-release hype stage. Coming soon!


Posted by: DK | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:23 PM
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774

770.last: With all these meetups, have you considered switching to balding 47-year-olds?


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:24 PM
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775

774: You think Buck would like that better?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:25 PM
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776

775. At least he could play?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:27 PM
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777

774: What kind of a slacker waits until 47 to start going bald?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:27 PM
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778

You think Buck would like that better?

Aren't you supposed to know your own husband's fantasies by now?


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:27 PM
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779

775: It's all about giving the client options.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:27 PM
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780

777: RTFA.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:29 PM
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781

Lord lumme, 407 wasn't serious.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:29 PM
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782

781: Now you tell us.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:30 PM
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783

Best of luck, Mr. Lincoln. That sounds like no fun.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:31 PM
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784

Look, ma, no hoohole.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:34 PM
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785

I make a quite comfortable salary for an individual, but adjusted for the interest/excitement level of my job I feel like I'm rich. You usually have to get involved in crappy stuff to really make a lot of money. Of course, I'm not getting a vacation this summer, so there's that.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:36 PM
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786

I hope being old is more fun than being middle-aged

If my parents are any guide, the answer is yes. Not that they have a "Spending the kid's inheritance" bumper sticker on the RV, but they are comfortably retired and both in good health. Just back from a Black Sea cruise. There is a sort of nagging late in the 4th quarter trying to run up the score feel to their current life. I hope it lasts.


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:37 PM
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787

784: Oh, hey. I was actually on that thread.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:38 PM
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788

784. Oh my grace, there ain't no hiding place.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:38 PM
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789

I have a sugar mama while I'm trying to break into Mammonwood. Last month I worked a lot of contract gigs and she saw that I was less happy and less creative than usual and told me to knock it off and get back to making things up.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:43 PM
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790

788:Oh my lord, let me remember without googling.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:48 PM
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791

Let me forget things without liver damage.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 2:52 PM
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792

I hope being old is more fun than being middle-aged

I can't imagine how. I expect it's all the woes and scourges of middle-age, only with lots more constipation, failing body parts, and dying friends.


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:06 PM
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793

This is probably too late for Mr. Lincoln (because of the 48 month vesting period), but divorce insurance does exist. I still don't understand how that works when the insured has so much more knowledge than the insurance company.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:06 PM
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794

792. Yup.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:08 PM
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795

792, 794: I seem to remember research saying that on average, old people are happier than middle aged people, who are happier than young people.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:09 PM
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796

795: Maybe the left tail of the "happy" distribution doesn't make it to old age?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:11 PM
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797

I seem to remember research saying that on average, old people are happier than middle aged people, who are happier than young people.

Only if you control for health.

On average, old people are less happy, because they have the kinds of chronic diseases that tend to bring down happiness levels. However, if you compare chronically sick old people to chronically sick young people, the older folks are happier. And similarly for the healthy old and young.

The result is interesting because it suggests that as you age, you basically get smarter at living. You learn how to be happy. If only your stupid body wouldn't fall apart.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:13 PM
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798

I looked briefly for the study LB mentions, which I remember too. Age cohort would matter a lot, is what I wanted to check for. But aside from physical decay and dying friends, old age should be pretty good-- there's less pressure to get everything right, and ideally some wisdom.

The most distressing thing to me is that looking at older people in my family, age does not bring either wisdom or clarity about what one really wants all that often. But I also remember that (at least in the US) self-reported happiness picks up.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:14 PM
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799

However, if you compare chronically sick old people to chronically sick young people, the older folks are happier. And similarly for the healthy old and young.

The former could be explained by the chronically sick young people comparing themselves to the not-sick young people around them. The latter seems like it says something more nontrivial about how people age.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:17 PM
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800

Unless the healthy old people are gloating because their friends are all suffering from chronic illnesses.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:17 PM
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801

800: Or just happy not to be suffering from a chronic illness.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:18 PM
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802

798: I wonder if we are thinking about the same study. I remember hearing about it just through a TED talk by Dan Gilbert or Dan Goleman or some other psychologist named Dan G____ who works on happiness.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:19 PM
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803

Or, old people who are healthy can take Viagra or get jiggy with somebody who takes Viagra.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:20 PM
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804

It's interesting that impending death doesn't seem to have a big effect on people's happiness levels -- I wonder if it's that old people don't perceive death as particularly impending, or that it doesn't bother them.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:22 PM
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805

Daniel Kahneman.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:24 PM
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806

795: Here is a report on a recent one. (from a Dr. Arthur Stone at Stony Brook). The data was apparently from a Gallup survey taken in 2008--I do wonder how they control for potential generational bias.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:26 PM
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807

really no way to sound good complaining about how you can't get a date, is there

Speaking of which, my strategy of hiding in my room, not shaving, and waiting for the ladies to proposition me has paid off! Is there anything that's changed in dating protocol in the last ten years or so?


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:31 PM
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808

Nah, nothing's changed. As long as you're sure you've brought enough frogs, you're good.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:32 PM
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809

I understand it's no longer considered impolite to request anal on a first date. I think I learned that here.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:35 PM
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810

Although that doesn't apply to lunch dates, IIRC.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:36 PM
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811

804: WHAT'S THAT? DEPTH? DEPTH NEVER BOTHERED *ME* LITTLE LADY! WE WERE ALL GOOD SWIMMERS AT MY SPECIAL PUBLIC SCHOOL, BEFORE THEY RUINED IT BY LETTING IN KIDS WHO LEFT ONE WHOLE SIDE OF THE TEST PAPER BLANK. THE IMPORTANT THING WAS THAT WE HAD ONIONS TIED TO OUR BELTS WHICH WAS THE STYLE AT THE TIME. STOP ME IF I'VE TOLD YOU THIS BEFORE. BACK THEN I NEVER HAD A BLACK TEACHER, NARY A ONE. AS I SAID, THIS ALL HAPPENED BEFORE ...


Posted by: OPINIONATED | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:38 PM
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812

807: I've been trying that and it doesn't help at all! Must be a gendered thing.


Posted by: DK | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:38 PM
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813

Well, I found Brother Claude Ely's "Ain't No Grave" covered by hundreds under slightly different titles like "No Hiding Place" but it didn't help enough. I was remembering some 60s group doing the refrain almost as a nursery rhyme fadeout. Doors? "Soft Parade"


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:40 PM
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814

812: Ah, but did you try 809?


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:41 PM
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815

808: It may not be the young men, but all the frogs Buck objects to...


Posted by: DK | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:43 PM
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816

... MOST I EVER MADE WAS FIVE THOUSAND, NO WAIT, FOUR THOUSAND EIGHT HUNDRED DOLLARS A YEAR AND WE FELT PRIVILEGED, PRIVILEGED! I TELL YOU TO ..., NO WAIT IT *WAS* FIVE THOUSAND DOLLARS THE ONE YEAR. I REMEMBER BECAUSE WE HIRED A MAID, PAID HER FIVE DOLLARS TO CLEAN THE WHOLE PLACE, I WAS LIVING DOWNTOWN WHICH IS WHAT THEY CALLED LOWER MANHATTAN IN THOSE DAYS. YOU COULDN'T GET WHITE ONIONS BECAUSE OF THE WAR.


Posted by: OPINIONATED | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:46 PM
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817

814: Ah, that age old question: which came first, the anal or the date?


Posted by: DK | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 3:56 PM
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818

which came first

Isn't the answer always already Labs?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:06 PM
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819

All due praise to Opinionated.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:11 PM
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820

And here I thought OPINIONATED was the TOS.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:23 PM
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821

Which is to say, unless I'm misreading the tone therein, 811 and 816 are pretty over the top. But then again, opinions differ.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:25 PM
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822

Delaying divorce partly because setting up a second household will not be cheap.

Does Mrs. Lincoln know this?

Feel free not to answer if I'm poking too deeply in your business (IYKWIM). I'm just curious. It seems like the answer could affect both the tolerability of the current situation, as well as (potentially) the ethics of it.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:26 PM
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823

If no kids, put the jerk's stuff on the curb.

I regret to inform you that that sort of thing is strictly illegal in New York City.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:27 PM
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824

I don't think the TOS makes allusions to Abe Simpson.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:27 PM
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825

I was wondering that too, but was too inhibited to ask. Now that Brock's violated your boundaries, though...


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:27 PM
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826

821: OPINIONATED is riffing on a similar monologue that appears in the mouth of Grandpa Simpson in some episode or other, after the Simpsons was good but before it became definitively shitty.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:28 PM
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827

826: And doing so quite humorously.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:34 PM
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828

Ah, once again my lack of familiarity with The Simpsons leaves me unmoored in the treacherous waters of an internet discussion chatboard.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:36 PM
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829

821: So, do people think it's unethical to start planning/strategizing the divorce before telling your spouse that's the plan?


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:45 PM
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830

No, that episode occurred while the Simpsons was still good.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:45 PM
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831

Which is in turn a riff on the Monty Python Yorkshiremen, no?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-eDaSvRO9xA

[original]

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FatHLHG2uGY

[Hollywood Bowl]


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:45 PM
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832

some other psychologist named Dan G____ who works on happiness.

Daniel Gilbert? I think he works more on people's assessments of whether they will be happy after some course of action.


Posted by: Criminally Bulgur | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:46 PM
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ttaM - no, of course you didn't sound snooty about Reading! I myself am frequently less than complimentary about the place - it's not exactly somewhere anyone would aspire to live, but once you find yourself there, it's surprisingly okay. Apart from stuff like this - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-berkshire-10887855 - happening in my street (that's my house above the 'A' in the photo).


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:48 PM
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(Crappy article, but the only one with a photo of my house!)


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:49 PM
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The endings of long relationships are pretty much always the worst times of people's lives. What's ethical starts to seem like a luxury in all the flailing around.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:49 PM
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829: Not categorically. I mean, on some level, every divorce is going to be someone's idea first,. which is going to involve planning to some extent. But I could see potential for acting in an unethically deceptive manner, if you were sitting on a plan for a long time, and your spouse was acting on the basis of a belief that everything was just fine.

But I wouldn't think that any specific person had acted unethically absent a whole lot of insider knowledge about their actions, motives, and circumstances, which I'd be very unlikely to have about someone else's marriage.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:50 PM
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831: I hadn't read it that way. In the episode in question, the workers at SNPP go on strike, with Lisa as their Joe Hill-esque balladeer. Mr. Burns wants to hire strikebreakers, but the only ones he can find are Grandpa [Abe] Simpson, Jasper, and a bunch of other old men. Grandpa alleges that when he was formerly a strikebreaker, one of his best tactics was to interfere with the pickets by telling meandering stories with many irrelevant digressions, hence the "wore an onion on my belt, which was the fashion at the time" and "nickels used to have a beehive on the back, we'd say 'give me five bees for a quarter'"
The point of the sequence is not to point out Grandpa's frugality, or harsh upbringing, but rather to elucidate the ineptitude of his strikebreaking tactics.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:51 PM
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804: Death itself doesn't scare me. Getting trapped in an ICU waiting for it as the quacks keep delaying it scares me silly.

One thing I've observed as I age is the general angst level drops. Many problems were solved, many others have been classified as not important or unsolvable.

That's happening on the personal and global levels. People are killing each other for silly reasons? Governments are trying to increase their power? Business exploits the workers? What else is new?



Posted by: Biohazard | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:54 PM
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re: 833

Erk.

Believe it or not, I know two sets of people who've had people break into their home, tie them up, etc, in a similar manner. One, the brother of the people whose house was invaded was a school contemporary of mine and, I think, he owed some people money.* The other couple had the bad luck to live above a Post Office that some headbangers planned to rob [via their flat].

* he had a brief failed career as an armed robber. Terminated when him and his mates starting swanking about our village in nice suits, and made the fatal mistake (as per their status as criminal masterminds) of _buying_ their getaway car from a scrappy who knew them by name.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:54 PM
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my strategy of hiding in my room, not shaving, and waiting for the ladies to proposition me has paid off!

Ah. My mistake is shaving. Never would have guessed.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:55 PM
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Which is in turn a riff on the Monty Python Yorkshiremen, no?

nnnnnnnnnnnnnnnot really.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:58 PM
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Ah, in reviewing the episode guide at snpp.com, it is apparently Mr. Burns who is responsible for his own undoing, as he tells Smithers to get him strikebreakers "the ones they had in the '30s" -- which Smithers interprets rather too literally.

It's episode 9F15 if you want the full synopsis.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 4:58 PM
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This seems like a good time to recommend Labor's Troubadour to anybody interested in fond recollections of the rise of the post-war American labor movement.

It's just one slice of labor history -- told by a musician who had the good luck to become involved with it just as the modern labor movement immediately after WWII, but it's well written, and has a number of very interesting and entertaining stories.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 5:07 PM
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The Simpsons was still good 9 seasons in? Huh. I've only seen the first three or four seasons. Maybe I should watch more.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 5:08 PM
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Or is that not what the 9 means?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 5:09 PM
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829: There's probably a point where it could become unethical, like if you moved money to a safety deposit box or started dating somebody, but I don't see how you could be expected not to start planning something.

One thing to consider, especially if you are the least attractive member of the couple or are otherwise unlikely to have a new partner who looks at good as your current one, is to memorize your partner naked. Keeping photos or video is unethical, but what is in your head is yours.



Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 5:17 PM
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846.2: Good advice. I'm unlikely to have a new partner, perhaps, but if I get too lonely picturing UNG naked is amazingly effective at killing any semblance of libido.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 5:37 PM
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OT: I know this is desperately off-topic, but quick: if you had to choose a movie to put next in a Netflix queue (i.e. the next movie you're going to watch), what would be an obvious choice? That is, something you're probably not going to hate, not overly cerebral (sorry), not overly maudlin, just a more or less sure and reasonable good-to-see sort of thing?

I realize this is a ridiculous question. But my household has just signed up for Netflix, we watched Avatar and are about to return it, and my housemate has put some awful thing called "Cloverfield" in the queue next. The only thing in the queue.

I really need to champion something else. Juno? I'm not looking for obscure or clever here, just solid.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 5:41 PM
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848: The Heart Of The Game.

Everybody I know who has watched has enjoyed it, including one person who, as a general rule, actively dislikes organized sports.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 5:43 PM
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There are hundreds of movies that should come in front of Cloverfield. Return of Martin Guerre, Run Lola Run, What Dreams May Come, Heavens Gate, River Runs Through It, just to pick a few at random.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 5:47 PM
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Parenthood is a favorite of mine. Or Mostly Martha.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 5:47 PM
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849: Okay, I'll check.

Meanwhile, I'm onto something! I'd had a note to check out more Miyazaki: I saw "Princess Mononoke" last year and loved it.

So, for Miyazaki: Spirited Away, or My Neighbor Totoro? I think the former is considered a must-see.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 5:49 PM
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Recent movies? Any movies?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 5:50 PM
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The More the Merrier, if you like screwball; Dragon Inn if you like Hong Kong pseudohistorical adventure; Jiri Kylian's _Car Men_, although it's a dance, uh, story; the version of _Sense and Sensibility_ with Aishwarya Rai, can't remember the title; Totoro;
Oh! What a Lovely War.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 5:52 PM
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(also, we've found the Netflix recommenders reasonably accurate, so try just rating everything you've already seen. WE'd probably get better results if we didn't have a single account and different tastes.)


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 5:53 PM
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Thanks, Charley: seen 3 of those (your recommendations list probably looks like mine). Return of Martin Guerre is a good idea.

851: I've never heard of Mostly Martha. Will check.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 5:53 PM
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If, for some reason, a documentary is out of the question, Le Femme Nikita might be a good choice. A very smart action movie.

I am trying to read between the lines of original comment to guess things that you would enjoy, but could pitch to your housemate. That might be a stretch for your tastes, I don't know.

I'm trying to think of other movies that would appeal to a wide range of tastes. I recently watched Wag The Dog, having missed it when it was current, and thought it was far funnier than I expected.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 5:54 PM
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I still have a copy of Run Lola Run unwatched upstairs. "Gift" from UNG because he really wanted it. Never watched it because I was so annoyed at receiving a gift that he'd clearly gotten for himself. But made a point of keeping it in the split because I'm a spiteful little bitch.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 5:55 PM
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This is helping. Thanks, all. I got one look at what my housemate had in the queue and felt I had to get on this, like now. A case of mild alarm.

I'm going to explore the suggestions. It's also made me realize that looking into other work by the same directors is (obviously) good. For example, whoever did "Raise the Red Lantern" -- I've seen at least one other film by said person -- check that person out further!

I've rated, um, 91 movies so far on Netflix. I'm telling them everything about my soul!


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 5:59 PM
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Mostly Martha is a German flick (subtitles). Very, very good without being overly heavy. They did an American remake recently with Katherine Zeta Jones, but I can't remember what that one was titled.

I may have to watch My Neighbor Totoro tonight, now that you mention it. I bought a bunch of Miyazaki for Rory when LB mentioned Nausicaa and Spirited Away here. Totoro still hasn't been opened.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 6:00 PM
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No thoughts on the Miyazaki? 'cuz that's what I'm tending toward at the moment. I just don't know which one. What about his "Howl's Moving Castle" which I've also heard intriguing things about?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 6:02 PM
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860=me


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 6:04 PM
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For example, whoever did "Raise the Red Lantern" -- I've seen at least one other film by said person -- check that person out further!

Zhang Yimou. I like his early movies that I've seen a lot more than his more recent blockbusters.

Farewell My Concubine comes to mind as another good Chinese film from the same time period as Raise the Red Lantern, but it's a different director, Chen Kaige.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 6:05 PM
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Spirited Away is indeed a must see. Nausicaa as well. I suspect you might particularly enjoy the environmental themes in Nausicaa. I think I have an unwatched Howl's here, too. Huh. I need to watch some movies!


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 6:07 PM
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...I still have a minor bee in my bonnet about an old accusation of 'privilege'. Way back months ago, I was enthusing about sewing; or possibly someone needed to know what a crotch curve was, I forget. There were also some discussions of finding a tailor, if one didn't have the time or skill to sew oneself; and of facing the serger. So.

And a lot of this petered out, as I remember, with the 'reminder' that this was all a discussion coming from a position of privilege. The more I think about that, though, the nuttier it is, when applied to homemade or even professionally tailored clothes by someone already on the Internet.

First round of handwaving; making and remaking one's own clothes is not rare among the low-paid. The payoff is less than it was when almost all women learned to sew and were paid bupkis, but it's a deeply practical skill for people I know in the low-salary parts of the world.

Second, what less privileged alternative is there? Clothes are going to be available used; home-made; independent-maker-made; or mass-produced. We can't all get them used (not permanently). Home-made means that people with care and art and practice can wear much better, more durable things than they could purchase. I made myself good dresses for years before I had a *sewing machine*.

Buying clothes from a tailor sounds luxurious, but unless you're finding sweat-free mass-produced clothes, a lot of what you're paying is for better conditions for the worker.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 6:12 PM
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861: What about his "Howl's Moving Castle" which I've also heard intriguing things about?

What I've seen of it I can recommend.

max
['Good stuff.']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 6:17 PM
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Farewell My Concubine comes to mind as another good Chinese film from the same time period

Yes, agreed. I've seen it. I really need to rate these things on Netflix; it seems to do a decent job in recommendations based on what I've rated thus far. I just haven't rated enough things.

Di, Run Lola Run is good; I'd say don't worry about the UNG connection. It's a good movie. Red-haired sort of punked-out woman, running a lot due to circumstances.

For now, I think Spirited Away is it. Environmental themes make me happy. That's kind of where I want to be right now with a film.

857: Le Femme Nikita might be a good choice. A very smart action movie.

I've seen it a couple of times -- it showed up on cable. I absolutely loved the TV series Le Femme Nikita. I hope I should not be embarrassed by that.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 6:22 PM
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822, 825, 829 --

Not to speak for Abe, but I think what he's saying is that because of the housing market, job market, etc., it's hard for them to figure out financially how to set up an arrangement in which both husband and wife could financially sustain separate households with anything like their current standard of living. So they're stuck staying in the house for a while and saving up while figuring things out. This is a huge problem for people divorcing right now. I don't think at all that he's saying "I'm secretly plotting my financial getaway scheme behind my wife's back."


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 6:34 PM
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865: I still have a minor bee in my bonnet about an old accusation of 'privilege'. Way back months ago, I was enthusing about sewing

clew, I'm not sure if you're talking about me and something I said about tailored clothes. I remember that you at some point took me to be saying something negative about sewing, and I thought I explained that I did not mean that at all, but I might not have done that well enough.

If I didn't then, I do now: sewing is noble and (obviously) skilled work, which generates in me, anyway, a very broad smile and nod, and would that I were set up better than I am myself, with my sewing machine not mostly stuck in the closet (and seriously needing an oiling of its works, I think).


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 6:48 PM
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Parsimon,

Airplane! is the best movie ever.

Zardoz is an under appreciated gem that has been discussed here before.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 6:49 PM
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Parsi, Nausicaa is the one with environmental themes, unless I just missed that in Spirited Away. Howl's Moving Castle is a lot of fun, especially if you haven't read the book.

OT: Are there ever Austin meetups? We may be there Labor Day weekend and I'd love to see some internt people besides the ones I'd be going to visit. We'll make our final decision about going Tuesday or Wednesday, but it's sounding like a good bet.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 6:51 PM
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Heebie, M$tech, and Kraab are all Austin-area, I'm pretty sure, and maybe some others.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 6:55 PM
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Di, Run Lola Run is good; I'd say don't worry about the UNG connection

Oh, I know this intellectually. It's a stupid hangup. But that's the kind of gal I am, I guess...

868: So true. And even if you utterly despise one another (which does not sound like the Lincoln's situation), when your child(ren) will be going back and forth between the households, there is pretty good incentive (for decent folk) to want to do what you can to make sure both households are reasonably comfortable and stable.

God bless them that they can maintain a reasonably peaceful and stable household in the meantime.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 6:56 PM
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OMFG, a film thread! And I am already weary!

Miyazaki: Howl's Moving Castle is, unfortunately, among his worst. Jack Z/pes, in a personal communication, correctly identified a creeping Americanism in it. Here's Miyazaki, best to least best:
1. Spirited Away (1.1 Graveyard of the Fireflies -- amazing, but hella depressing)
2. Princess Mononoke
3. My Neighbor Totoro
4. Porco Rosso
5. Pom Poko
6. Castle in the Air
7. Nausicaa
8. Kiki's Delivery Service
[Haven't seen The Cat Returns, My Neighbors The Yamadas, and it's been forever since I saw the Lupin stuff, and I feel like I'm forgetting something, but all my DVDs are packed up.]

What else do you like?
How about: Dirty Pretty Things, The Grifters, Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus, The Wind That Shakes the Barley, The Score, Rabbit-Proof Fence, Fox and His Friends, High Art, My Beautiful Laundrette, Adventureland, Pickup on South Street, to name a few.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 6:57 PM
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Not to speak for Abe, but I think what he's saying is that because of the housing market, job market, etc., it's hard for them to figure out financially how to set up an arrangement in which both husband and wife could financially sustain separate households with anything like their current standard of living. So they're stuck staying in the house for a while and saving up while figuring things out. This is a huge problem for people divorcing right now. I don't think at all that he's saying "I'm secretly plotting my financial getaway scheme behind my wife's back."

Well, right... "hard for them to figure out... they're... saving up while figuring things out" all implies that Mrs. Lincoln is informed about the situation. Which was what I was asking.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:02 PM
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Wait, maybe I like Pom Poko better than Porco Rosso. It's definitely sadder, but the politics are better, I think.

The thing is, pretty much all of Miyazaki's work has a significant environmental theme. Nausicaa is post-apocalyptic environmentalism, but Mononoke, Totoro, Pom Poko and Castle in the Air all have environmental concerns as major plot drivers.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:04 PM
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I couldn't begin to recommend movies unless I knew a little about what you'd seen, and liked and not liked.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:05 PM
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Nobody has mentioned Ponyo? Privileged.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:06 PM
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877: That would be required only if you were trying to give useful recommendations.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:07 PM
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877, 879: Or, I don't know, perhaps you might construe the relatively open-ended request for recommendations as an indication that Parsimon is feeling pretty open to hearing what *you* enjoyed.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:11 PM
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OT: Are there ever Austin meetups? We may be there Labor Day weekend and I'd love to see some internt people besides the ones I'd be going to visit.

I'll be there too! I was just going to ping the Austin contingent.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:12 PM
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Parsley should watch Point Blank with Lee Marvin.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:14 PM
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882: Given that he's been dead for 23 years, that may be a bit difficult.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:16 PM
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880: I'm not willing to make myself that vulnerable in a forum like this.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:19 PM
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880: In that case, I said Airplane!.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:19 PM
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I know this is desperately off-topic, but quick: if you had to choose a movie to put next in a Netflix queue

Stalker

But all his stuff is online right now, and I should be watching it.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:22 PM
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880: That's what I was going for in 874.last: a whole bunch of good movies, more or less accessible to a range of audiences, that might prompt further explanations of the parameters we are to use in creating a list of recommendations.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:22 PM
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Bizarrely, I was also thinking about doing a trip to Austin over labor day. Hmmmm.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:24 PM
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Damn, now I don't know whether to put Spirited Away or Nausicaa next. Environmental themes are desired, but then again everyone says Spirited Away is a must-see. I've switched them around in the queue twice now.

Thanks, y'all.

Moby, you silly, I've seen Airplane! and Zardoz.

This Netflix thing is going to wind up feeling like an assignment, isn't it? I've heard of people giving it up for that reason.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:25 PM
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Moby, you silly, I've seen Airplane! and Zardoz.

I mostly watch the same movies over and over instead of watching new ones that might suck.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:27 PM
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Also, Point Blank is amazing. And Lee Marvin is the world's ultimate man.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:29 PM
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874.last is an excellent list, given that I love My Beautiful Laundrette and The Grifters. Thanks.

Sorry it's taking a little while to absorb all this.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:29 PM
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887 -- Your Miyazaki rankings were very useful. I've seen the first two and last two and seem to have the rest right there on the shelf waiting (apparently when I ordered Spirited Away, I just ordered all of them... ) I've decided to watch Pom Poko.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:30 PM
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885: Airplane! for sure.

I watch a lot of TV through Netflix's "Watch Instantly," and have recently enjoyed the first season of Veronica Mars.


Posted by: JennyRobot | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:33 PM
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888: Do it do it do it.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:40 PM
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How about: Dirty Pretty Things, The Grifters, Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus, The Wind That Shakes the Barley, The Score, Rabbit-Proof Fence, Fox and His Friends, High Art, My Beautiful Laundrette, Adventureland, Pickup on South Street, to name a few.

Meh, meh, unseen, no, ok, ok, unseen, yes, yes, no, meh

After Dark, My Sweet better than Grifters

Land and Freedom better than Wind That Shakes

The Cake Eaters better Stewart indie than Adventureland


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:46 PM
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665

The business lobbies hate you guys with a white-hot, burning passion.

As a shareholder on whose behalf they are supposedly working I'm not too wild about them either. I get a check for like $2.73, the lawyers get millions and the company in which I own stock pays for it all. I have trouble seeing the benefit to shareholders.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:51 PM
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How can you not like The Wind That Shakes the Barley, bob? That movie was like made for you! (Although, I admit, almost more compelling than the film itself was the minidoc about Ken Loach that showed snippets of his earlier work.)

I like The Grifters and The Getaway (the Peckinpah version), was disappointed by After Dark, My Sweet and Coup de Torchon and am trying not to get my hopes up too much for The Killer Inside Me. Frankly, I don't think anyone has come closer than Peckinpah to really understanding what Thompson was going for. I'd kinda like to see Linklater or the Coens try Pop 1280, or maybe Park Chan-wook or Takashi Miike would be a better choice. Actually, they should all each do a version.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 7:58 PM
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848

My movie recommendations. Five star and four star.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:01 PM
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I never knew you had a blog.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:06 PM
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Seriously? No one recommended Snakes on a Plane?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:06 PM
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Am I the only one without a blog?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:06 PM
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I don't know whether to be chuffed or gobsmacked that our tastes overlap that much, Shearer.

Can't go wrong with Billy Wilder though, everyone should agree on that. (Obviously there are some exceptions: One, Two, Three is only going to be of interest to the completist or scholar of film history.)


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:07 PM
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Putting Natilo's and bob's responses to that list of films together in order to decide which to see is quite a task.

The "meh" responses from bob are making me laugh. Thanks, everyone! Some good stuff mentioned. My imagination seems to flee when faced with endless choices, at least in an online format. It was never so difficult in an actual video store.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:07 PM
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901: That was on basic cable last night. I watched about thirty seconds.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:07 PM
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901: SOAP is useful primarily in that it inspired the Geoffrey Chaucer Hath A Blog parody.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:08 PM
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It astonishes me that there are any movies (that anyone has heard of) that bob hasn't seen.

On another note, this comment at Crooked Timber makes me wonder....

In a broadly post-industrial economy, was it not inevitable that trade unions would find it harder to maintain their power and voice?
Why? It's not so post-industrial that no one works for anyone else. If the labor force is shifting into different industries (that aren't manufacturing), why not unionize those industries?
ISTM that the answer to that question is political, not some kind of inevitable destiny. And the first point of evidence in favor of that is that the ruinous collapse of unions in the US has not been matched by other countries making the same technological changes.

...how much of the original drive toward unionization was driven by highly visible dangers and injustices? People getting maimed or killed by machinery, forced overtime, etc.?

I'm just wondering if part (just part, mind you) of the decline in unionization is that it's harder to detect the inequities in more isolated, independent white-collar jobs. You might get diabetes or have flare-ups of a chronic illness or even have a heart attack and die, but it doesn't have the immediate visceral impact of, say, having an arm caught in a machine. And even working overtime is something that happens more in isolation -- it's not everyone on the shop floor staying later because the boss says so; it's a bunch of individuals in their own far-flung cubicles feeling pressured to stay on and finish a project.

I don't want to push this too far; I can think of a dozen objections to my own argument off the top of my head. Still, it's interesting.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:09 PM
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Geoffrey Chaucer has a blog. Standpipe has two blogs. Everybody but me.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:09 PM
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898:I very quickly got the feeling that Cillian Murphy was uncomfortable with and too inexperienced for Loach's improvisational style. I saw terror in the actor's, not the character's, eyes. Ian Hart not as pretty but very good.

ADMS was the most interior of those films, which is why I think it's the best. Nothing much happened, which is good. Thompson

Getaway with the novel ending might have been good. Ali McGraw?


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:11 PM
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910

Query: Has anyone recently seen the 1978 miniseries of The Dain Curse? I watched a tiny bit of it when I was a kid, but couldn't really get into it. Is it any good?


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:11 PM
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911

I'm finding it so hard to imagine Shearer watching The Devil Wears Prada. Never mind liking it.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:11 PM
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912

Somewhat randomly: Double Indemnity, The Lady Vanishes, Persona.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:13 PM
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913

909: Concede that Ali McGraw was not well cast. She is hardly a Thompsonian femme fatale.

911: I'm finding it harder to believe that bob liked High Art


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:15 PM
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914

Speaking of movies, Casablanca is on right now. TMC or AMC or something. I was watching and it was very good, but it made me want to smoke. I had to stop watching because I'm not far enough at quitting nicotine.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:16 PM
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915

Hey! Topic convergence.

If we were ever going to do an Unfogged reading group film club again, we could all watch Ae Fond Kiss and then discuss what we thought would happen after the ending.

It's far enough removed from American b/w racial dynamics that I bet we could get at tricky and puzzling issues without triggering the guilt/discomfort/apology dance.

Plus, sex (okay, sexy scenes) and selfish behavior (yay judgmentalism!).

Well, anyway. Pretend this is an orange post title.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:17 PM
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916

Also, BBC America has a show called Me and My Big Breasts. I can't help but that it will suck because if it was interesting they wouldn't have had to work so hard on a title.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:18 PM
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917

915: Wouldn't that be funny if we all ordered it from Netflix tonight? Everyone would be so confused!


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:19 PM
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918

911: why?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:20 PM
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919

914: Fun. TCM. And then Notorious and then Autumn Sonata. They're doing an Ingrid Bergman marathon, I guess.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:21 PM
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920

I'm finding it harder to believe that bob liked High Art

OMG. Euro-junkies and Radha Mitchell & Patricia Clarkson. Moral corruption, desperation, games played so deeply even the players may not be sure what moves they are making. Seen it 10+ times, trying to determine how corrupt Radha was from the beginning.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:22 PM
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921

894.2: I watch a lot of TV through Netflix's "Watch Instantly," and have recently enjoyed the first season of Veronica Mars.

Well, you know what they say. She's a marshmallow.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:23 PM
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922

918: Are you serious?

::assuming that you are:::

Because the topics that reliably induce him to comment are so far removed from the concerns of the movie; because his comments are so notably lacking in the kind of interpersonal interest and leaps of imagination that are generally required to enjoy a light movie about coming of age and human relationships; and perhaps most of all because the other movies he rated as excellent are, in my totally objective opinion, actually excellent. As opposed to Devil, which I unprecedentedly stopped watching after 20 minutes.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:25 PM
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923

Other random things Netflix tells me I gave 5 stars: Cocteau's Beauty and the Beast, The Passion of Joan of Arc, To Catch a Thief, In the Mood for Love, The Thin Man, The Rules of the Game.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:25 PM
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924

922: I was serious. Even taking his Internet personality to be a useful synedoche of his complete personality, that movie has interesting things to say about power relationships and hyper-competitive fields, and also has a lot of good actors and is pretty snappy.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:29 PM
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925

So this is like The Netflix Challenge: The Thread? Cuz kinda silly.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:31 PM
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926

Geez, Sifu. You don't want to talk about incomes, you don't want to list Netflix ratings. What do you want to talk about?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:32 PM
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927

My take on High Art may be slightly idiosyncratic. Mitchell is a pretty poison user, even if she is too callow to admit it to herself, and Clarkson knows, almost from the beginning, Mitchell will end up killing Sheedy. Clarkson loves Sheedy. Sheedy like a lot of 40-somethings when 20s chase them think she can get her youth back.

There is also a lot of post-modern subtext.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:32 PM
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928

926: farts!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:33 PM
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929

907: I think some, Witt. But as I understand the early moves to organize what we think of as the early craft unions, the bigger issue was loss of workplace autonomy, especially the advent of so-called clock time. Put another way, even before the industrial shop -- in any of its guises -- doing most kinds of labor was a dangerous business. But laborers had more control of their own working conditions. They could come to work drunk or take a day off if they chose. They could quit for the day when it suited them. And they often controlled the fruits of their labor. (I can adopt appropriately Marxian terms, if you want.) That changed as bosses slowly began rationalizing the workplace in the 1820s and 1830s, and workers didn't like the change. They especially didn't like that they lost control of time, that time previously had a certain fluidity but now was kept by a foreman or, later, the railroads.

Anyway, I could go on and on, but while danger had something to do with it, I don't think that's the whole story.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:33 PM
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930

Oh, _Thank_You_for_Smoking_. Except for you, Moby. Not just yet.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:34 PM
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931

923:Watch those movies before you die. Some multiple times. 2nd Thin Man, like 2nd Tarzan, may be slightly better.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:35 PM
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932

920: My best friend in the world did the music for High Art and the rest of Lisa Cholodenko's movies. Now will you be my friend?


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:36 PM
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933

Heh. Devil Wears Prada was also an UNG gift. The Christmas right before the divorce was final. Turns out, it's his girlfriend's favorite movie.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:38 PM
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934

I guess not. Well, it was worth a try.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:38 PM
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935

Weird. In the sidebar, my comments are back-to-back with Di's tale of UNG's classiness coming next. But here, that's not the case. This has something to do with The Simpsons, doesn't it?


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:40 PM
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936

This is another good movie about an aging artist and ingenue fan. Langella is playing 60ish here.

Watched The Box with Langella last night. Bad movie.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:41 PM
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937

899: James, I like those lists.

Re: Netflix, I love the convenience of it, but I really don't cycle through enough movies to justify the monthly fee. Too many choices combined with not enough limits (no due dates, no late fees) really brings out the procrastinator in me. I guess I'm their ideal customer (and there must be many more like me, or I don't see how they could stay in business).


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:41 PM
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938

929: Ah, excellent. Always good to have an actual historian's perspective to go along with my mindless speculation.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:41 PM
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939

928: I can discuss acid reflux and general gastrointestinal discomforts if you like.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:41 PM
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940

929: My job remains pretty fucking unrationalized. Which is why I'm willing to stay at it for present pay and why I wouldn't be that interested in a union. I'd be willing to join a union, if somebody else made it, only if I was sure the union couldn't rationalize my job.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:42 PM
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941

The adjacence of 938 and 939 is making me laugh.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:44 PM
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942

939: haha! Poop!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:46 PM
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943

Yeah, the irrationality of my workplace is one of my job's best features. Being able to come and go as I please, being able to show up drunk or not at all, being able to keep my own clock, these things are worth a great deal to me. And yes, I think these things are one of the reasons that it's so hard to organize faculty at elite universities -- because, no matter how much we bitch, we know we've got a pretty sweet gig. Not to mention, most faculty I know delude themselves into thinking that they're management.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:47 PM
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944

I'm guessing I couldn't come to work drunk more than once. But, I'm staff (research), not faculty.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:48 PM
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945

You can be my friend, ari. Even eric.

Think about you, and Megan & Halford & bphd and all, with every California story I read.

I didn't want to talk about myself, but if ari or Halford have 6 figure incomes, it doesn't much bother me. I assume the Californians are seeing stuff that hurts like hell every day.

But wealth doesn't bother me. Everybody hurts. I have relatives in 7 figures that buy Remingtons and Russells on a whim, and people in trailers, and they're both Republicans, so I feel about the same toward each of them. Just kidding.

I don't envy. I don't want anything for myself. Fuck Paris. I want ari and Megan to feel better about stuff.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:51 PM
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946

Being able to come and go as I please, being able to show up drunk or not at all, being able to keep my own clock,

Ari is Don Draper? Who knew?!


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:51 PM
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947

Showing up to work drunk would probably be frowned on at my current job. Getting drunk while *at* work, however, would not only not be frowned upon but might actually be required for advancement.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:52 PM
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948

At my old job, where I was much less happy than I am now, I used to speculate about what sort of things I would have to do to get fired. (This was post-tenure, by the way.) I decided that not showing up to teach my classes for an entire term wouldn't be enough. Someone would eventually, very sheepishly, approach me about the issue, reassuring me that not showing up wasn't really a problem, but hey, did I think I would be absent the next term as well. Because then they'd have to get someone to cover my classes. As for being drunk, always, absent belligerence, that wouldn't even lead to a reprimand. In the end, I decided that serially fondling students would probably be a problem, as would the commission of more than one felony.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:53 PM
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949

I used to get drunk at work with some regularity, but that's different from showing up drunk. Oh, dotcom era office parties, I do miss you.

On the other hand, I might get drunk at work as soon as next Friday. So there's that.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:54 PM
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950

Hah! So Pwned.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:55 PM
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951

That's kind of you, bob. But we're having a very mild summer, and the tomatoes are even better than usual, so I'm feeling alright, thanks. I just try my best, as I eat my tomatoes and enjoy the relatively cool weather, to ignore the declension narrative that's unfolding around me. Now, when Governor Whitman decides to abolish tomatoes, then I'll be miserable.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:57 PM
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952

928, 942: You should totally have been at the Mary Roach event in Porter Square tonight.


Posted by: Nathan Williams | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:57 PM
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953

being able to show up drunk or not at all

To faculty or other committee meetings? To class? Aren't you a member ex officio of every committee?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:58 PM
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954

In the end, I decided that serially fondling students would probably be a problem, as would the commission of more than one felony.

Not if the students gave you permission. Did you try asking nicely?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 8:59 PM
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955

Getting drunk while *at* work, however, would not only not be frowned upon but might actually be required for advancement.

Expect me to contact you beseechingly in January.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:02 PM
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956

I want ari and Megan to feel better about stuff.

As I suspected. You're a rank sentimentalist.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:02 PM
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957

I checked, and the Tarkovsky's have apparently been taken down. These were Criterions, with obvious logos, and this was a minor but legitimate art and amateur film site, so I can't imagine what they were thinking, unless just to get some hits.

Criterion is good people.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:05 PM
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958

956:duh. Maudlin. Labile.

Oh. Also watched 9 last night. Looked good. Neat steampunkvision. I cried.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:09 PM
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959

932/957: One of my friends did the art & design for the packaging of the Criterion Testament of Doctor Mabuse, so everyone should be my friend.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:10 PM
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960

Criterion is good people.

We're not so picky.


Posted by: Opinionated Soylent Green Maker | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:10 PM
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961

Criterion has published multiple discs of movies directed by Michael Bay and, to my knowledge, nothing by Michael Mann. On the other hand, I'll probably buy their The Thin Red Line.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:22 PM
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962

Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story is underwhelming so far.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:26 PM
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963

955: Because I haven't tried it, I can't know for sure. But my sense is that it would take some time before people would even sit me down for a little chat about my tippling. And then, I just can't imagine that I would be fired, even if I showed up to meetings and class drunk. Maybe eventually, but it would take serious time and effort on my part to be fired for drunkenness or absenteeism. It's a helluva thing, I tell ya.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:33 PM
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964

963 to 953 and not, as stated, 955.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:33 PM
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965

Lo, way back in the booming '90s I had a friend who got a job as [ generic programmer ] at [ generic biggish dotcom possibly owned by even bigger firm ], making oh, probably very low 6 figures. He showed up the first day, got his direct deposit sorted out, got set up with a desk, maybe got a little bit of instruction as to what he was expected to be doing. Then he never showed up (he might have answered the occasional e-mail, but he didn't do any work) again. They paid him for, I think, 6 months. Then he got unemployment.

Those were the days, boy.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:37 PM
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966

I should note that if someone showed up, a noob let's say, and that person, even if tenured, immediately began missing classes all the time and belching up bourbon fumes during department meetings, that person might face some kind of official sanction and maybe sooner rather than later would be sacked.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:39 PM
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967

Believe it or not, I hadn't seen 965 when I posted 966. As ever, Sifu's gang has more fun that the professoriate.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:41 PM
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968

belching up bourbon fumes during department meetings

Vodka would be harder to sense in someone's belch.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:41 PM
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969

As ever, Sifu's gang has more fun that the professoriate.

Oh, we had more fun than anybody back in those days. Now it's all peripheral neuropathy and and type-II diabetes.

Nah, I kid. All my friends from back then are rich now.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:43 PM
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970

and and type-II diabetes.

And...conjunctionvitis!


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:48 PM
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971

Oh, we had more fun than anybody back in those days. Now it's all peripheral neuropathy and and type-II diabetes.

Goddammit, I really *am* a cliche.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 9:56 PM
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972

Huh, Shearer's list contains one of favorite movies ever -- Broadcast News. I note with mild disappointment, however, that My Dinner With Andre does not make it onto either list.

...how much of the original drive toward unionization was driven by highly visible dangers and injustices? People getting maimed or killed by machinery, forced overtime, etc.?

Allow me to plug the book in 843 again. Not that it would definitively answer that question, but it does give a sense of the historical moment in which the modern labor movement evolved, and then stalled.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:00 PM
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973

Mostly off topic: My car decided to break today. I'm sort of bemused that it's probably a relatively minor fix (I need to replace the ignition, I think), as I had been planning on simply getting rid of my car the next time it broke as I can't afford a new one and didn't want to sink another $1000 into a 15 year old car. (This would also allow me to feel very virtuous.)

I went on a bike ride (after biking to the dinner I had planned to drive to) and picked blackberries instead of worrying about it too much. Biking instead of driving while I'm waiting to decide what to do should be good for me, at any rate, though it's going to make looking for an apartment in the next city over a little more difficult.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:17 PM
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974

Thank you, Bob. I'd love to be watching a better governed California. But there are better recipients of your care. I'm one of the lucky ones. (And tomatoes are in season.)


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:18 PM
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975

Thinking about unions I think that one part of the story of why unions have been in decline for the last 30 years is that their opponents evolved, and the types of conflict between labor and management have changed and that unions haven't quite figured out what conflicts they can take advantage of.

I have no evidence for this theory, and it may be of minor importance. But I do think that the union movement developed certain tactics that worked and then, as they got stronger, business realized that they were better off trying to avoid the situations for which the union tactics were well suited, and how to fight the PR battles more effectively.

You could argue that the union tactics that were successful from the 40s through the 70s were, themselves an evolution in response to the fact that management had a great deal of success using brute force against unions and they had to be able to combat that.

But, again, I have no sense of how the changing legal environment affects union/business conflicts, so that may be more important in those shifts.

On preview, parenthetical, I'm sorry. That sounds stressful.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:23 PM
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976

That was very sweet of Bob, but yeah, I'm pretty much lucky too. California is nice!

Personally, I am in favor of getting drunk, but I really hate drinking in the office, which combines all the weirdness of office life with the disorientation of drunkeness. Keep your work and social life separate, folks.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:30 PM
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977

I don't know whether to be chuffed or gobsmacked that our tastes overlap that much, Shearer.

I looooved Lone Star, and I think I'm the only person I know who did. Now it's me and James.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:31 PM
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978

Thanks, Nick, but it's not serious. I have AAA for towing, it's parked in my drive way, and I have good friends who'll drive me around if necessary. I don't actually need a car where I live, thankfully, and I've been thinking about getting rid of it for awhile (as much as I like the freedom of having it). Plus, if the thing that is wrong with it is what I think it is, it'll be a relatively cheap fix.

(Really, it's all because I washed my car and vacuumed it out yesterday. My car prefers to be ill-kempt; do something like that and it repays you by breaking.)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:33 PM
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979

I have no sense of how the changing legal environment affects union/business conflicts

It matters a lot. I'm not current on this stuff, but I wonder if Obama is doing anything about the appalling anti-labor regulatory environment.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:36 PM
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980

Parenthetical, giving up my car was far easier than I expected. Highly recommend it. Sac-Davis by train and bike is straightforward and would take you less time than LB's daily commute.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:47 PM
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981

Cars are less important, in some life contexts, than internet access. So there's that.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:53 PM
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982

Thanks for the encouragement, Megan. My guess is that I'll fix it this time around but I suspect that my carless days are coming soon.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:57 PM
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983

Or is that not what the 9 means?

Something like 500 comments were posted just in this thread while I was driving today, so I haven't and won't read the whole thread, but the Simpsons episode with the strike is "Last Exit to Springfield", I think in season 3. There are a number of good Simpsons episodes many seasons in, but it's more common for there to be a good sequence in a bad episode, or just a thoroughly bad episode later on, so finding the good stuff means wading through a lot of terrible shows.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:57 PM
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984

And since 981 might have been too glib: that really does suck.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 10:59 PM
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985

Trust me. Right now I'd be much more pissed if I my internet were out for a week than my car.

Plus, did everyone miss the part about the blackberries? For once, it hasn't been too hot for them in the valley and they're lovely.

(Also, I unexpectedly gained 10 pounds since being fitted for a bridesmaid dress in spring. Biking might be a much cheaper alternative than getting the dress altered.)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08- 6-10 11:01 PM
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986

Am I the only one without a blog?

No. I thought about starting one about five years ago and then I realised I had nothing to say.

And the first point of evidence in favor of that is that the ruinous collapse of unions in the US has not been matched by other countries making the same technological changes.

Is this true? I was in Barcelona a few years ago and noticed a building where the FAI (Anarchist) and CCOO (historically Stalinist) were sharing office space. I mentioned to the Catalan guy I was with that last time I'd looked they'd been shooting at each other, and he said that with union membership down to about 5% you took the premises you could afford.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 4:10 AM
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987

I looooved Lone Star, and I think I'm the only person I know who did. Now it's me and James.

This, exactly.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 4:14 AM
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988

Not if the students gave you permission. Did you try asking nicely?

I hereby authorise Professor Kelman to commit as many felonies as he wants.


Posted by: A slightly dishevelled student | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 4:25 AM
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989

Lone Star? The John Sayles Lone Star. I love that movie! One of Sayles' best. It's didactic, like most of his, but it brings out a lot of different perspectives.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 7:16 AM
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990

there should be a second question mark after the second Lone Star.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 7:17 AM
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991

989: I really liked it. Everyone I know liked it! Who didn't like? Self-styled "intellectual" film critics. J/ona/than Ros/e/nbaum -- I'm looking at you.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 7:23 AM
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992

Are films the new food for Unfogged thread cool downs?


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 7:48 AM
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993

Hey, I like Lone Star. it may not be Sayles' best work, exactly, but it's very good. One interesting thing is comparing Frances McDormand's character in that to her character in Blood Simple -- they can't really be the same person, but it's fun to try to think of ways they could be.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 8:22 AM
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994

993: I like doing that with actors. In particular, I think Paul Reiser's character in Aliens is the same as his character in Mad About You.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 8:39 AM
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995

I'm scared the blog will break at over 1000 comments in a thread. Or maybe even the Internets!

"Nobody knows where it started, Andrea, but there was a cascade effect of overflowing cockjokes and recipes..."


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 8:54 AM
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996

You're safe, Bob, no cock jokes here these days.

However this morning my sister sent me a souvenir from Bletchley Park which includes a recipe for a casserole made under conditions of WWII rationing. Want me to post it?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 8:58 AM
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997

So it's still food after all.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 9:00 AM
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998

I suppose you'd have to call it food.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 9:06 AM
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999

Per person:

1 large potato (unrationed)
1 rasher bacon (adult ration 4 oz per week)
I small onion (unrationed)
1/2 pint stock (probably bovril)
1 or 2 sausages (unrationed)
Cooking fat (adult butter ration 2 oz per week, use lard
seasoning and mustard powder

Slice potatos thinly and layer in a dish. Roughly chop onions and bacon and fry till onions are soft. Spread over potato layer. Fry sausages until brown, arrange on top. Mix the stock, seasoning and mustard and pour over. Cook in a medium hot oven for 40 minutes. Yum.

Internets still there?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 9:19 AM
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TOS? If you really want comment 1000, go ahead and put up something inoffensive enough that I don't have to delete it. If you can put something harmless together, I'll leave it up for you.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 9:20 AM
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Oh, damn. Sorry, dude, 1000's gone. Back to our regular deletion policy.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 9:21 AM
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Come on!


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 9:21 AM
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999: I guess I'd thought British war rationing was much less generous. Maybe lack of availability or price was a problem, but all the potatoes, onions, and (probably horrible) sausage you can eat would seem to be enough to keep you going.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 9:41 AM
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Criterion Films on Netflix On Demand


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 9:50 AM
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1003. Your instincts are right. Vegetables (mostly) weren't rationed, but if you weren't in a position to grow your own they might as well have been for many people. And nothing much out of season. The sausages were truly nasty - they hadn't recovered by the mid 50s when I can remember point blank refusing to eat them and nobody forcing the issue.

Here's another standby, on the site of the World Carrot Museum, no less. An awful lot of serious nutritional science went into designing the rations, even though it may look a bit dated.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 9:56 AM
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Famously the population has never been as healthy as it was during the war years. Funnily enough, not getting much sugar or butter, and being forced to get the bulk of your calories from veg and staple carbs turns out to be OK for you. Who knew?!


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 9:58 AM
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the World Carrot Museum

That this exists pleases me greatly.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 10:00 AM
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986

Is this true? ...

Probably not. I was under the impression that unions had been declining in many countries. For example according to this:

The findings parallel historical and recent labor trends in the U.S. Like other industrialized nations, union density in Japan has been declining in the postwar era. In Japan, the number of workers joining unions peaked in 1949 at 55.8 percent, steadily declining over the last few decades to less than 20 percent in 2003. Similarly, the percentage of U.S. employed workers in unions hit its zenith in 1954 at 28.3 percent, according to a report by Cornell University's School of Industrial and Labor Relations. By 2003, just 11.5 percent of employed workers were union members.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 10:01 AM
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I am continuing to use the new DVR to pursue my investigation of the concept of the "TV show". "Castle": unwatchably stupid. "Fringe": unwatchably smarmy. "The Good Guys": watchably stupid, not entirely clichés. It's nice to watch something and be absolutely sure that I understand everything that's going on once in a while.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 10:34 AM
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972

Huh, Shearer's list contains one of favorite movies ever -- Broadcast News. I note with mild disappointment, however, that My Dinner With Andre does not make it onto either list.

Never seen it. Also there are a small number of movies (like Casablanca) which I liked but which aren't listed because I compiled the lists from the list of movies I had ordered from Netflix.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 10:35 AM
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911

I'm finding it so hard to imagine Shearer watching The Devil Wears Prada. Never mind liking it.

Perhaps I liked it in part because it is the sort of thing I don't usually watch. I tend to like things that are a little bit exotic. So the more movies I watch the fewer that stand out. Which means my lists were influenced by the order in which I saw various movies. I included a number of older films which were historically (film industry history) significant. I read somewhere (and it makes sense to me) that modern viewers sometimes undervalue these movies because they were imitated so much that they don't seem very original if you see them after having watched a bunch of modern movies. But because before getting a Netflix subscription I had seen rather few movies these old films were fresh to me.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 11:00 AM
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1011: I also loved that movie despite it being well outside the genres I usually watch (which lean heavily towards historical fiction, sci-fi and documentaries). IMO the whole movie is carried by Emily Blunt making faces in the background.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 11:30 AM
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907: I'm just wondering if part (just part, mind you) of the decline in unionization is that it's harder to detect the inequities in more isolated, independent white-collar jobs.

I'd say unionization was most successful (when it didn't have political support) when unions were centered in factories, and unions could make that work because a small number of dedicated workers could stuff up the entire works simply by refusing to work. Trained specialists are hard to replace on a moment's notice when you need every one of them you have working for you working at full speed all the time. Whereas people operating in cube monkey jobs tend to be fairly easily replaced since they aren't working on an assembly line, so timing is not an issue, and neither is the type of hyper-specialization that factory line jobs develop over time.

In short, it's hard to unionize a bunch of generalists working in parallel, as opposed to a bunch of technical specialists working in series. It's too easy for management to replace the former.

max
['See libraries, for instance.']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 12:05 PM
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I would totally watch a version of "At the Movies" where Siskel and Ebert were replaced by Shearer and McManus. With guest radical commentary by Minne.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 12:15 PM
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Brad DeLong also liked The Devil Wears Prada, as did I. I thought it was very well done.

The thing that I think it got really right (or, at least, which matches my experience) is that what can make a bad situation truly seductive isn't money or perks, but when it inspires you to pull something off that you didn't think you could do. At that point you don't want to leave because (a) you associate the bad situation with the strength and ability that it inspired in you and (b) the other people there know what you did, and if you go nobody will care.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 12:17 PM
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I enjoyed both the book and movie versions of Devil Wears Prada, but given that my tastes usually run to Bring it On and Center Stage, I don't really have a ton of credibility. I justify my preference for trashy books and movies on the grounds that I study one of the most depressing topics in the world.


Posted by: JennyRobot | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 12:54 PM
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1014: Diavlog podcast!


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 12:55 PM
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1017: I was thinking something like bloggingheads, but how do we get them not to talk about politics?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 12:56 PM
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I don't care if the thread's dead! And over 1000 comments! I still have stuff to say, and I was babysitting tonight without Internet access, so I couldn't say it before. The horror.

But because before getting a Netflix subscription I had seen rather few movies these old films were fresh to me.

Then you ought to watch Charade and North by Northwest. I don't think those were on your lists. Maybe also The Trouble with Harry, although it's quite different from the others, and not IMO as good a movie.

I really liked [Lone Star]. Everyone I know liked it!

Ditto. I honestly don't know who didn't like it. I mean, yeah, it's didactic in parts, but ISTR it being widely popular at the time, and not exactly panned by the critics or anything.

In short, it's hard to unionize a bunch of generalists working in parallel, as opposed to a bunch of technical specialists working in series. It's too easy for management to replace the former.

This sounds entirely plausible, until I remember that one of the major unionization successes of the '90s and '00s have been...uh...janitors.

Well, it's a problem for my theory too.

['See libraries, for instance.']

At my weekend gig we're covered under whatever the FOP manages to negotiate, at least as far as raises, holidays, etc. Could be a lot worse.

I would totally watch a version of "At the Movies" where Siskel and Ebert were replaced by anything featuring Shearer and McManus. With guest radical commentary by Minne.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 10:04 PM
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Oh, and I liked Center Stage just fine (was that the ballet movie?), not to mention umpteen other romantic comedies and teen coming-of-age movies (heck, I've seen She's All That and Ten Things I Hate About You *more than once*). So it isn't snobbery on my part.

Instead, what put me off The Devil Wears Prada was an officious speech about how the character who thought she wasn't influenced by fashion was wearing a sweater in a shade of blue that was dictated by some fashion maven high up and and then trickled down to the masses. There may have been some deeper point that escaped me, but my knee-jerk reaction was: And? So? If the fashion maven didn't exist then she'd be wearing a sweater of a different color. Maybe even something ugly or un-coordinated with the great mass of humanity who bought sweater that year. Ye gods and little fishes.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 10:10 PM
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I would totally watch a version of anything featuring Shearer and McManus.

Wow, that sounds just absolutely horrible. What are you even saying?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 10:15 PM
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There may have been some deeper point that escaped me

Which may not have been revealed until the end of the movie.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 10:16 PM
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Sorry, didn't mean to do a mini-pile on Witt, there. I just think you're wrong on those two points, is all.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 10:16 PM
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1021. Maybe Witt meant to say:

I would totally watch a version of Say Anything featuring Shearer and McManus.


Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 10:24 PM
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They'd just fight over who got to hold the boom box over their head.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 10:28 PM
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I would totally watch a sitcom about Shearer and McManus sharing an apartment.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 10:30 PM
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I'm totally going to think of Ione Skye tonight.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 10:34 PM
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I just think you're wrong on those two points, is all.

1. Seems pretty natural you'd think I'm wrong on this one; your relationship with mcmanus is completely different.

2. ?? Seriously, I don't mind the thing being spoiled, so I'd be curious to know how that dumb speech was ever given its logical comeuppance.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 10:45 PM
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1028.2: the deeper point (which isn't actually very deep) revealed at the end of the movie is that regardless of that triusm, the fashion mavens aren't so important compared to the truly important things like allegedly valuable newspaper jobs and the chance to bonk whatsisface from entourage.

1028.1: because I'm willing to point out that he's a troll and a hypocrite who regularly says unconscionable things? Or why?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 10:49 PM
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regardless of that triusm

Wait, what? This is the whole thing that confused me. What "truism"? Saying that the blue sweater is blue because it's a popular shade this year is trivially true. What she actually said was...OK, I just went and looked up the speech.

'This... stuff'? Oh. Okay. I see. You think this has nothing to do with you. You go to your closet and you select... I don't know... that lumpy blue sweater, for instance because you're trying to tell the world that you take yourself too seriously to care about what you put on your back. But what you don't know is that that sweater is not just blue, it's not turquoise. It's not lapis. It's actually cerulean. And you're also blithely unaware of the fact that in 2002, Oscar de la Renta did a collection of cerulean gowns. And then I think it was Yves Saint Laurent... wasn't it who showed cerulean military jackets? I think we need a jacket here. And then cerulean quickly showed up in the collections of eight different designers. And then it, uh, filtered down through the department stores and then trickled on down into some tragic Casual Corner where you, no doubt, fished it out of some clearance bin. However, that blue represents millions of dollars and countless jobs and it's sort of comical how you think that you've made a choice that exempts you from the fashion industry when, in fact, you're wearing the sweater that was selected for you by the people in this room from a pile of stuff.

Millions of dollars and countless jobs...most of which would have existed regardless of whether there was a high-fashion industry or not. I mean, people still need clothes. Bah.

because I'm willing to point out that he's a troll and a hypocrite who regularly says unconscionable things?

Nah. Because his trollish and hypocritical tendencies, for whatever reason,* get under my skin less than other people's similar tendencies.

It doesn't make me a better person than you; it means our reactionary buttons are installed in different locations. I mean, good lord, you managed to talk to Megan McArdle courteously.

*I suspect it's because I know and like some Bobs in real life.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 11:09 PM
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1030: For me, it's quite simple: I like Bob, but I don't like that other person. Bob can be a bit hyperbolic, sure, but he's not a troll, much less a hypocrite.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 11:31 PM
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The way I see it, is that our trolls are OUR trolls. Sure, we can abuse 'em, but we still love 'em. Kinda like my gimpy cousin locked in the cupboard.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 11:38 PM
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Footnote to 1031: Just to be clear, by "that other person" I don't mean Sifu (I like him too, though I disagree with him very much on the subject of Bob), but that glibertarian with the unaccountably high-profile blog at the Atlantic.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08- 7-10 11:49 PM
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Millions of dollars and countless jobs...most of which would have existed regardless of whether there was a high-fashion industry or not. I mean, people still need clothes. Bah.

No bah unless everyone gets to wear identical Chinese peasant outfits when the New Unfogged Order takes over and inequality is banished.


Posted by: Biohazard | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 12:08 AM
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Well, since we're all agreed that Mao was a net positive...


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 12:10 AM
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We could all compare outfits. I'm wearing...jorts! Yay, jorts.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 12:11 AM
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Bob can be a bit hyperbolic, sure, but he's not a troll

I don't believe anyone has ever been more wrong in the history of the Internet.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 12:13 AM
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I thought cerulean blue was made fashionable by that X-Files character who could control minds.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 12:49 AM
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Well since some people think others are holding out, i made 8k and change last year.

AFA unions go, i would guess one change is drop in capital used (not overall, but now its all in robot-factories and there really isn't much in an warehouse of cubicles, or even walmart really).
Having a really pricey manufactory stop working gives workers some leverage. Now, there isn't this risk.


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 4:01 AM
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It's hard to unionise people who fall for the scam that they must be rising in the world because they wear a suit to work where their father wore overalls. And that scam is pushed pretty hard. It prevents people noticing that they're actually earning less in real terms while wearing that suit than their father did in his overalls.

Mass unionism involves a level of social solidarity which has been under ideological attack for as long as I can remember, almost. It's the most insidious part of the class war waged by the ruling class, because it flies under most people's radar.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 4:20 AM
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1037: well, possibly later in the same sentence.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 5:12 AM
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Bob is magnificently inconsistent. Does that make him a hypocrite?

Do I contradict myself?
Very well then I contradict myself,
(I am large, I contain multitudes.)


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 5:23 AM
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Why have I started getting random 403s on this site? Am I intermittently or incompetently banned or what?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 5:25 AM
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It doesn't make me a better person than you; it means our reactionary buttons are installed in different locations. I mean, good lord, you managed to talk to Megan McArdle courteously.

That has nothing to do with button-pushing. Believe me, I think McMegan is a far, far worse person than bob (who is harmless) could ever be.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 5:29 AM
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I believe I would pay money to watch Shearer and mcmanus do "At the Movies".


Posted by: One of Many | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 7:07 AM
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I really was annoyed by the book version of TDWP -- mostly because her friends were unrecognizable to me. They were constantly whining that she was working too hard and couldn't come hang out with them in bars at 6pm, because -- ew -- she had to go to the Costume Gala at the Met. Patently absurd -- and any group of reasonably ambitious fancy college grads recently moved to NYC would never, ever behave that way. In the book it's made clear that if she sticks it out at Runway for one year, she gets to move to the New Yorker. I am the world's laziest person, lacking all ambition, but any group of 22yos who nag their friends to quit jobs with such promise so that they can all hang out more are selfish and/or insane gits.

The movie is a thousand times more nuanced than the book.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 7:16 AM
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I really liked [Lone Star].

I was stuck in an airport security line next to Chris Cooper once. I was sorry afterward that I hadn't taken the opportunity to tell him how much I liked Lone Star, but we did talk a little about why we were pulled aside by the Stasi.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 7:47 AM
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Chris Y in 1040 gets it exactly right, IMO. It turns out that if you pretend that everyone is a professional, you can kill solidarity and pay folks less while flattering their vanity. Cf. Wal-Mart's "associates."


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 8:29 AM
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The definition of "troll and a hypocrite" is hopelessly subjective and mostly means "this person pisses me off". It would be interesting to see someone try to work out an explicit definition of the permissible boundaries of disagreement and some method to gauge supposed insincerity.

I like Noah Baumbach's movies, he's smart and perceptive although he writes for/about a particular UMC subculture.

"Restrepo", the Sebastian Junger doc about Afghanistan, is one of the more compelling you-are-there takes on war I've seen and is definitely worth seeing when it comes around. It has no explicit political agenda at all, but there are some compelling examples of what it means to send armed 20-something Americans to bumble around in such an alien place.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 9:33 AM
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There are also goofs the unions made. They mostly didn't pay any attention to the increasing ability of off-shore workers to make good quality stuff and they didn't see what computers and robotics were going to do to the need for their workers.

My father kept saying the leadership was stuck in the "Made in Occupied Japan" era (that marking signifying cheap crap to everyone of his generation and mine) after it was well over.


Posted by: Biohazard | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 9:58 AM
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The definition of "troll and a hypocrite"....

Slightly off-topic, but there is an epic to be written on the career of "hypocrisy" from acknowledged universal flaw to crime against humanity.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 10:04 AM
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1049:I went looking, but I couldn't find the lefty review of Restrepo that ripped it to pieces for the way it ignored and infantilized the Afghanis while valorizing the soldiers killing them. One of the very worst at disregarding the context.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 10:28 AM
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1051: Too late, it's called The Diamond Age by Neal Stephenson, and there's bonus Yellow Peril!

Unions and why they are losing: The AFL-CIO sold out non-members during the New Deal. Also, most of the AFL-CIO unions, even if they had some pretense of industrial unionism when they started, are firmly in the craft union camp at this point. Also, J. Edgar Hoover gave the Mafia a pass for a long time, allowing organized crime to rot many unions from within. Also, the McCarthy hysteria (and the other Red Scares) wound up purging the very people who made the most effective union organizers -- actual radicals -- from most unions. And finally, the bosses are not stupid. They're actually quite adept at, say, playing the Teamsters off against AFSCME and weakening both unions in the process.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 10:31 AM
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Here Just a Lefty at Corrente reviews Restrepo

Not very good; but Ebert mentions we never see any Taliban and few Afghanis.

I know what I would expect from machismo Unger

You should also know how I feel about these close, personal, compassionate views of Americans in the war zones since my end-of-days at Obsidian Wings. This doesn't end war;it enables it.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 10:45 AM
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1019

Then you ought to watch Charade and North by Northwest. I don't think those were on your lists. Maybe also The Trouble with Harry, although it's quite different from the others, and not IMO as good a movie.

I have watched North by Northwest (but not the other two). As I recall I liked it but not enough to single it out as really good. As I mentioned I have a tendency to rate most things 3.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 10:51 AM
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There is not an epic, but there may be a lyric, to be written on the vacancy of "context," when it is demanded and insisted on always, everywhere. I imagine a sort of companion piece or epilogue to the last canto of Forever Sophomore; Or, I Will Cold-Bloodedly Murder the Next Person Who Mentions the Performative Nature of Anything.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 10:56 AM
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I have watched North by Northwest (but not the other two). As I recall I liked it but not enough to single it out as really good.

I prefer To Catch a Thief myself, because I prefer Grace Kelly to Eva Marie Saint anything, but you have to admit Grant's suit in NxNW is pretty fantastic, though I understand that the title makes navigation instructors grind their teeth.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 10:59 AM
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1020

Instead, what put me off The Devil Wears Prada was an officious speech about how the character who thought she wasn't influenced by fashion was wearing a sweater in a shade of blue that was dictated by some fashion maven high up and and then trickled down to the masses. ...

Actually that speech is one of the things I liked about the movie. In it the boss shows she really knows her business. Similarly I liked the scene (in Broadcast News?) where the airhead announcer starts talking about how he plays to the camera and you realize he is a skilled professional. I have a (perhaps undue) respect for expertise.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 11:03 AM
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The "Its easier to kill someone by being friendly until they they turn their back" approach doesn't just work for unions. For my law school class on mediation, we had some lawyer from halliburton talk to us about their mediation program (this was prior to it coming out that it also covered rape) It turns out is saves costs in many ways!


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 11:12 AM
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Witt, two things about The Devil Wears Prada. One is the point that Sifu has already made - the Streep character, Miranda Priestly, wasn't the hero of that movie.

The other thing about that speech is that it explains Priestly's own self-regard - she's a big shot in an industry that she cares deeply about. Priestly understands Adrea's sense of superiority, but knows that Andrea's taste is shaped by the judgments of people like Priestly.

Who cares who shapes Andrea's taste? Well, Priestly does, and I think Andrea maybe does, too.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 11:25 AM
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Hm, Cloverfield, the movie all of these are better than, is what i was going to watch next (which given my leisure habits, could be a while yet). i liked nbnw a lot tho


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 11:42 AM
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Why have I started getting random 403s on this site? Am I intermittently or incompetently banned or what?

No ban but (completely ex recto here) possible server shakiness as the thread goes over the 1000 mark. I suppose I could go try to figure out how to close comments, or someone with more knowledge than I could just make that happen. Oh, the possibilities are endless, really.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 11:48 AM
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1054: yes, it is definitely told from the American perspective, and sentimentalizes it exactly the way the soldiers themselves do. It's like the soldiers' home movies, basically.

But there are quite a few scenes where Americans interact with Afghans (and yes, infantilize them). It's probably an indicator of my politics that I found those scenes subtly but utterly damning of our effort in Afghanistan. I felt the point was obvious enough that editorial intervention by the filmmaker wasn't even necessary. I suppose someone with different views than mine on U.S. imperialism might have a different view though. Have no idea whether Junger would have the same interpretation.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 9:25 PM
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1030: Millions of dollars and countless jobs...most of which would have existed regardless of whether there was a high-fashion industry or not. I mean, people still need clothes. Bah.

Well, people still need clothes, but they might not need to replace their clothes as often if it weren't for the ever-changing dictates of the fashion industry, which means that there might not be nearly as many jobs and dollars at stake without it. Maybe Andy isn't affected as directly by that part of it if she just fishes whatever she likes out of the discount bin and wears it until it falls apart, but her available choices are still being dictated by the industry without her knowledge.


Posted by: Dave W. | Link to this comment | 08- 8-10 9:54 PM
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But old andy doesn't care about what the choices are, she just wants something socially acceptable and inexpensive.

like if someone told me they were the one responsible for the flowers on the texture of toiletpaper, *makes jerkoff motion with hand*


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 08- 9-10 10:21 AM
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If clock time drove early industrial workers to unionize, perhaps 'Blackberry time' will drive early online workers to unionize. Mm, probably not; it's balanced by the Suit Illusion.

I think what we need is a morality-of-bureaucracy movement which will have in its tail a just-treatment-of-the-clerks requirement. Be a good cog, actually get information to those who are supposed to have it, follow the umbra and penumbra of laws about the information, and you can quit working after 40 honest. Desk workers of the world, unite! You will be able to catch up on your Netflix queues!

belated topic merge, there's a Londoner living for a year on the 1941 clothing ration; good blog. Not as scary as unrationed sausages.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 08- 9-10 12:28 PM
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