Re: ATM: Only the lonely

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x. trapnel, you've got some 'splainin' to do!


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 11:19 AM
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Heh.

I was just going to suggest that she write a(nother?) dissertation. What could go wrong?


Posted by: x. trapnel | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 11:22 AM
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Trashy fiction is a good way to get out of your own head, if that's what you want to do and pharmacological methods are ruled out.


Posted by: x. trapnel | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 11:23 AM
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3: Yeah, that's definitely true for me. As well as throwing yourself into absorbing projects at home. And the standard advice about figuring out what you like to do and joining a group that does it.

In her situation, I think I might take all the dating advice ever given and apply it to making friends, which can be even harder than finding a partner once you're into your late 20s and beyond. Friends can do a lot to stave off loneliness.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 11:27 AM
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Trashy fiction can also leave you feeling sort of empty and with that 'where did all that time go' feeling if you over-indulge.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 11:28 AM
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Moving to a foreign country can be very lonely-making, but it also gives you a great excuse to be aggressive about making friends. I mean: if you've been in the same city for half a decade, and are out of your early twenties, if can feel weird (= felt weird, to me) to be putting yourself out there on the friendship market. So to speak.


Posted by: x. trapnel | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 11:30 AM
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So, what's needed is advice for filling the loneliness *without* sex, drugs, or alcohol.

Food! And not junk food on the couch, either. Cook really good meals for yourself full of the foods that you personally like and others (including stinky boyfriends) think is disguisting.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 11:30 AM
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Trashy fiction can also leave you feeling sort of empty and with that 'where did all that time go' feeling if you over-indulge.

Yes, balance the trashy stuff with pirated academic-press ebooks from gigapedia.


Posted by: x. trapnel | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 11:31 AM
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7 is really good advice. Invite your new friends over for dinner. Actually, on second thought, invite your old friends instead. Less pressure.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 11:32 AM
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I realized recently that I have a truly ridiculous number of cookbooks and have been trying to think up various "challenges" to get me to use them. It's all in the name of procrastination, of course, but I think it might be fun.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 11:34 AM
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I can't believe I'm actually about to type this and god knows it isn't advice I've ever followed myself or probably ever would follow, but (non-crazy) churches are good places to make new friends.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 11:39 AM
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APOSTROPHER LUUUUUVS JESUS!


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 11:47 AM
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Cook bison that you raise yourself.

All the benefits of cooking + gets you outdoors.


Posted by: AcademicLurker | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 11:47 AM
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Those first months after I got separated were incredibly lonely.

I think the key is to recognize your loneliness and then be proactive about addressing it.

1. reconnect with old friends.
2. meet new friends. Join new groups of people. Try new things. Swim! Run! Join the Museum. Volunteer.
3. Read lots of Buddist stuff. (The Miracle of Mindfulness helped me.)

I used to make excuses to go to Target or the book store just to be around people. Dont be afraid to ask your friends to include you in stuff. "Help me occupy my time."


Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 11:48 AM
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10: If you need motivation to cook from them, I volunteer my services as an eater.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 11:50 AM
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With regard to sports: Almost all sports activities welcome newcomers who really suck at sports. I coach swimming. Many people are raw beginners.

Running is the same way. Have you seen the people in these running training groups? They are SLOW. Walkers essentially. Dont be afraid to try it.

Should I mention Ultimate?


Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 11:51 AM
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Apo loves me, this I know
Heebie-geebie told me so
Little ones to him sing songs.
Theirs are wee, but his is long.
Yes, Apo loves me
Yes, Apo loves me
Yes, Apo loves me
And Heebie tells me so.


Posted by: Jesus | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 11:52 AM
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Soccer was definitely the highlight of my week back then and probably the most constructive thing pre-therapy that I had going for me. Definitely agree with the group sports tip.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 11:53 AM
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Volunteering is a very good idea.


Posted by: x. trapnel | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 11:53 AM
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So, what's needed is advice for filling the loneliness *without* sex, drugs, or alcohol.

I'm pretty sure the word for that is "Farmville".

Seriously, though, this has been an issue for me, and group activities do seem to help, especially a class or regularly scheduled sort of thing. On-and-off group things like I've done through meetup.com have been less helpful, because you seldom end up around the same people from one meetup to the next; IME the more structured the activity and the more regular your attendance the better.

Also, I know this is not probably going to sound very reassuring, but while the shock of adjusting to that unfamiliar degree of solitude can be painfully acute when it first hits you, you do adjust over time. Not to downplay how hard it is to adjust to, but It Gets Better™.

On preview, I endorse will's recommendations too.


Posted by: persistently visible | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 11:53 AM
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I used to make excuses to go to Target or the book store just to be around people.

If you're mired in post-breakup loneliness, here's one activity to avoid like the plague: do not go to the mall during Christmas season. It's nothing but happy-looking couples pushing strollers as far as the eye can see. It will seem like a good idea at first, but it isn't.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 11:58 AM
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Food!

Porn! Masturbation!

You know, a really dedicated sinner can wallow in depravity without ever having to resort to alcohol, drugs or sex.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:04 PM
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I endorse 7: Food! And not junk food on the couch, either. Cook really good meals for yourself

Combine that with a structured activity, something that meets at a regular time and place with a recurrent group of people, and you might have the ability to not just make new friends, but also figure out what the heck to do with them (that's not sex, drug or alcohol related).

I'm remembering that I had pretty good luck with that when I first went to grad school: I'd relatively recently switched to full-scale vegetarianism, and wound up having a person here and a person there over (or getting together at their place) for a home-made exploratory veg dinner that was cooperative in the making.

The cooking makes for conversation, and the making it together, at least to an extent, makes for camaraderie. You can expand this to making a 'date' to go the farmer's market together, and so on.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:05 PM
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On-and-off group things like I've done through meetup.com have been less helpful

I looked at meetup.com for the first time recently. Looks useful, but holy Christ the vibe of "OMG HALP WE'RE STILL SINGLE" was overwhelming. Plus, I detest the fact that they make you come up with a cutesy phrase to describe the members of your meetup.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:06 PM
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Marksmanship is a difficult, rewarding discipline, and can really take your mind off of your troubles. The star of the movie Targets spent a lot of time alone, but did he seem lonely? No he did not.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:06 PM
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IME athletic activities, reading, and volunteering are excellent ways to get outside of your own head (especially if you can find a consistent weekly volunteering gig - tutoring, or packaging bags at a food closet, or whatever.)

Cooking classes? Language classes at the Alliance Francaise or similar? Stitch-and-bitch type gatherings? Getting involved in local activism? If she has any performance yearnings, attending/eventually doing open mics? Starting a music criticism blog so she has a reason to go to shows alone and start meeting people, if just going to shows alone is too scary? Also, some bookstores sponsor book clubs w/ meetings to discuss the book in question.


Posted by: julia f | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:10 PM
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Volunteering worked for me. In this case, avoiding the harder sex/drugs/alcohol ones might be formally indicated, but I avided them just because I wasn't brave.

It wasn't actually so good for meeting people who then became my friends, but it sure filled up some YOU ARE A BAD MONKEY USELESS GO FIND AN ICE FLOE channel that was otherwise... too loud.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:12 PM
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22: rob -- is that a philosopher thing to see porn and masturbation as completely distinct from sex?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:14 PM
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People always say "do more group activities" and they're absolutely right, but then the groups that they suggest are always lame and chock full of desperation (e.g. squaredancing) or require a preexisting skill that one often doesn't have (e.g. if you suck at soccer playing group soccer is often non-ideal). For the record, can we get a definitive list of potentially life enhancing, loneliness dispatching group activities? Personally, I have:
1) Church
2) Crossfit

And that's it.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:14 PM
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You could go out of your way to cultivate friendships with really miserable couples.

It will help you appreciate being alone.


Posted by: AcademicLurker | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:15 PM
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22: Also, while those activities can certainly be pleasurable, most people, I think, can only do them for so long, and after one doesn't always feel any less lonely.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:16 PM
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Food! Porn! Masturbation!

Art!

Produce an illustrated version of the book of Deuteronomy using only stick figures! Record the greatest hits of Elvis Costello on ukelele and tamborine, with autotuned vocals! Invent a language for a neglected race of sci-fi aliens! Has anyone ever invented a language for the Martians in War of the Worlds? I think not.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:16 PM
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32.3: Now those are some good ideas!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:18 PM
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is that a philosopher thing to see porn and masturbation as completely distinct from sex

They are still available to heterosexual women who have sworn off men. Come to think of it, I should have listed lesbianation, too.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:19 PM
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Commit a misdemeanor and get sentenced to community service! You never know who you'll meet picking up trash on the highway!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:19 PM
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Starting a music criticism blog so she has a reason to go to shows alone and start meeting people, if just going to shows alone is too scary? Also, some bookstores sponsor book clubs w/ meetings to discuss the book in question.

Ooh, yes. Especially if you're someone who never got any formal schooling in cultural criticism--take the time now to dive in! If there's a nearby university, it probably has lots of interesting lectures or other public events. This sort of thing has had been feeling less lonely the last week or so, at any rate.

(And now I'm off, to go to a concert.)


Posted by: x. trapnel | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:20 PM
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I've found it quite therapeutic to put on podcasts and clean for hours at a time. The limitation to this approach is that it's only applicable if you've been sad and out-to-lunch enough to let things get to the point that you've got several hours' worth of cleaning to be done.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:21 PM
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When I used to get really lonely I'd talk to my genitals.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:22 PM
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37: A basement shitting cat would give you many hours of cleaning.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:22 PM
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Oh, and further to cleaning, throwing shit out/giving stuff to Goodwill makes me feel immeasurably positive and productive for a few days.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:22 PM
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40 to 39.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:23 PM
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I've found it quite therapeutic to [...] clean for hours at a time.

Have you thought of discussing this with a qualified professional?


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:28 PM
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I try to stay knocked up.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:29 PM
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Regarding books:
I also made sure that I had three kinds of books by my bed. 1. trashy, easy ones 2. educational ones. 3. decent literature.


Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:31 PM
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Yoga, cooking, reading, masturbation. Walking or jogging. Accountability (to a therapist or one patient friend) for not wallowing or indulging in any harmful vices.

5. You know, I've felt regret for wasted time spent masturbating, playing video games, and watching TV, but never for time spent reading fiction.


Posted by: Hamilton Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:32 PM
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43 She did say no sex


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:32 PM
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43: So your advice is to get back with the guy just long enough to get pregnant and then dump him again, but this this time with a kid on the way and, therefore, no worries about being all alone?

Original!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:33 PM
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One word: Chatroulette. Non-stop LOLz to be had there.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:35 PM
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29: This is probably just me, but Audubon is great. You have to like hanging out with old* people, though.

*By this, I mean, largely, retired people. Every once in awhile there'll be some people closer in age to me, and there's definitely a decent sprinkling of the middle-aged.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:41 PM
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This thread makes me vaguely depressed because so much of the advice seems both good and potentially difficult to apply.

For myself, feeling lonely tends to exacerbate my introversion so group activities (while enjoyable) felt very tiring.

And if I'm feeling mildly depressed I tend to shy away from cooking/cleaning. I believe that is because when I'm feeling badly I find myself much less able to put up with small failures or obstacles and cooking/cleaning can easily feel like a succession of things going mildly incorrectly and I find myself wanting to turtle feeling like, "I just want something to go right."

Sorry to be a downer.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:42 PM
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Sometimes it can kind of seem like the people in late night infomercials are your friends.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:42 PM
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29: can we get a definitive list of potentially life enhancing, loneliness dispatching group activities?

- Taking a class. Actually, one in something that most of the participants haven't done before might be better, because then they reach out to each other. Something like painting or pottery-making (shut up) has the benefit that the circle of those who do it extend beyond the class itself: they all belong to a pottery studio, say, so you could, after the class, sign up for studio time and still go back there and chat with the people; or you could help out at the studio's annual public pottery sale. Something like playing soccer doesn't seem that way: you show up, you play, it's over.

- Volunteering. I've been attracted to the relatively new Free Store in town here. They take donations of stuff, sort it somehow or other, and the Free Store is open on weekends for people who are hard up to take anything they want. I imagine there's a lot of work to be done there.

I'm thinking that the presence of a larger structure/network connected with the activity is key.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:43 PM
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50 see 45. I hate group activities.

What sort of cleaning failures are you experiencing?

For cooking, start with one-dish meals. It's pretty hard to screw up tomato sauce for pasta.


Posted by: Hamilton Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:45 PM
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For cooking, start with one-dish meals. It's pretty hard to screw up tomato sauce for pasta.

No, it isn't. You people are just way too competent.



Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:48 PM
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If you need motivation to cook from them, I volunteer my services as an eater.

I'm pretty sure you're a more sophisticated eater than I am cook!

I've been making a lot of cakes recently, which are not good for a single person, so I've taken to dropping them off at friends' houses. I'm not sure if they love me or hate me for it.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:48 PM
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54: It's is easy to burn tomato sauce. It is also easy to have it bubble over and make a big mess all over the burners and wall which could then transition into the kind of cleaning failures that NickS is talking about.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:49 PM
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Oh, if the questioner's friend doesn't already have a roommate, that could be an option as well. Doesn't work so well for me in the long-run (I'm a crazy control freak, I think), but I really enjoyed having someone else to share my space and time with.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:50 PM
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55.last: time to switch to dropping them off of friends' houses.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:50 PM
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56: I seeded 10 pounds of tomatoes yesterday. There were tomato guts everywhere. I particularly like the spray you can get going along the sink backsplash.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:50 PM
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59: So gory!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:52 PM
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If she has geographically distant friends or family and doesn't already do this, Skype is nice.

People are different-- pushing a little to do slightly more social/athletic versions of what she already likes makes sense, as others have said.

I like reading Buddhist writing a lot. The Dhammapada and Thich Nhat Hanh are both readable. Also an enthusiastic second for junk fiction. George V Higgins, Elmore Leonard, John D MacDonald are crime fiction faves. Time in nature-- shores, cliffs, sweeping vistas that take an hour to hike up to.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:53 PM
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57: true! Once when I was feeling lonely and down I let a slovenly, obese pot- and cokehead with a fondness for hookers (matched only by his fondness for throwing trash on the floor) sleep on my couch for a year and a half until he had broken the couch, clogged the drain with body hair, burnt a hole in the carpet with bleach, and contaminated much of my other furniture with febreze (when you don't have time or inclination to shower!) reek. When I finally made him move out, it really lifted my mood!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:53 PM
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29: Low skill exercise things? This is speculation, rather than anything I've done, but I bet organized bunches of people who ride bikes for long distances, or train for running races, or anything similar, are easy to join and provide some kind of accomplishment/social contact feeling.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:53 PM
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57: Having a roommate is usually good for me, too. As a bonus, if you get two roommates instead of just one, the house suddenly has three residents, which it turns out is the exact minimum number of people necessary to exponentially increase the messiness factor of the house, thereby facilitating the cleaning advice I offered above. Virtuous circles!


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:54 PM
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62: Rabbinical wisdom! Have I ever told you all the story about the goat?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:55 PM
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54, 56: See that knob on the stove? If you are trying to boil water, set it to 'high'. If you are cooking anything else, keep it between 'medium' and 'low'. Turn on the radio and stay in the kitchen. Do not wander off to masturbate, do laundry or yoga, or surf the net.


Posted by: Hamilton Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:55 PM
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Sure, it's easy to remember not to wander off now. But what about ten minutes from now?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:57 PM
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Do not wander off to masturbate

You should probably at least step back from the stove a bit, no?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:57 PM
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Hire a hooker to come over and keep you in the kitchen.


Posted by: Hamilton Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:57 PM
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66: But once I close the door to the stove, how do I see what is going on in there?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:58 PM
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68: Cry, cry, stick your dick in the tomato sauce, cry, call ambulance.


Posted by: Hamilton Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:58 PM
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What sort of cleaning failures are you experiencing?

Just that moment of picking something up and thinking either "I don't know where this should go" or "I know where this should go, but I have to move three things before I can put it there" can be rapidly demoralizing (for me).

For cooking, start with one-dish meals. It's pretty hard to screw up tomato sauce for pasta.

Oh, sure, that's exactly the sort of thing that I'll cook if I'm feeling depressed or burned out. But it isn't the sort of thing that creates much of a feeling of satisfaction.

I mean, yes, tasty food is better than not, but it doesn't make me feel like I'm doing anything to fight a sense of malaise.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:58 PM
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66: No masturbating? no surfing the net?

Wow! Cooking is even harder than I thought!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 12:58 PM
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72: Pick one room and tell yourself you're going to get it nice and tidy and fuck what happens to the rest of the apartment. Today I will make the living room nice, and as a reward, I will watch dumb TV in my tidy living room. I will not go into the bedroom until it is time to sleep, and I will not turn on the light in there, so I will not see the piles of crap everywhere.


Posted by: Hamilton Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:01 PM
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Also, I should warn you that I've recently started taking antidepressants, so I'm all cheerful and effective and shit right now, which might be irritating to you.

Serotonin fuck yeah.


Posted by: Hamilton Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:02 PM
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66 is funny.

Turn on the radio and stay in the kitchen.

My housemate can't get this one. I'll be cooking something, and I have the radio on, and he wanders into the kitchen to ask somewhat querulously whether I'm listening to the radio? Because he's trying to watch TV in the other room? So if I wasn't actually listening to the radio, does it need to be on?

Yes! I'm cooking here!


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:03 PM
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For cooking, start with one-dish meals. It's pretty hard to screw up tomato sauce for pasta.

Better yet, start out with Sunday brunch. Anyone can make fruit salad and french toast or waffles. And getting people over for a Sunday mid-morning meal is lower pressure than Saturday night. And there's less of an expectation that alcohol will be served as part of having a good time.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:04 PM
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77: People. *shudder* Yech.


Posted by: Hamilton Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:06 PM
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Speaking of housemates, and cooking tomato-based things: my housemate the other day made some soup that was sort of Sandra Lee-esque. Two large cans of tomato juice into a pot with chopped up carrots, onions, and celery. I'm not sure if there were any other ingredients. Simmer forever. Soup!

It wasn't bad; it was however very, very salty.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:08 PM
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Yay to the Buddhism reading suggestions. A therapist trained in mindfulness approaches has been essential to maintaining my sanity.

Looking back at the time I was in almost this exact situation, the most important thing that I did during that period was de-programming, and thus it was the one time that group therapy was really effective for me. I had to have everyone else point out that "hey, that was an abusive relationship" to really begin to grapple with how this was so.


Posted by: JennyRobot | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:09 PM
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If Dear Friend was an athlete in his/her youth, he/she could consider coaching a youth league. There's always a demand for capable, non-pervert volunteers, and you'll gain new acquaintances in the form of the coaches of the opposing teams, the game officials, and the parents of the players (some of whom will be eager to suck up to you).


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:10 PM
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Anyone can make fruit salad and french toast or waffles.

Well... I do know how to cut up fruit, so I guess I could make a fruit salad.

I know how to put frozen waffles in a toaster.

I'm glad I'm not the one with this problem.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:10 PM
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I'd advise taking advantage of not being in a couple to enjoy the things your partner didn't. Is there a kind of movie you liked but didn't indulge in because your partner hated that genre? Buy a ticket and go see it by yourself! Go to a nice restaurant you've wanted to try. And, as above, spend all day in your pajamas reading a book you've put off reading, and then cook an amazing meal just for you.

One of the things I used to do when trying to get over a breakup faster was probably not very healthy, but it was effective. I'd try to imagine a fictionalized account of the relationship as if my partner and I were characters in a novel. I usually came to the conclusion that if I were a character in a book, I would have, as the reader, thought that I, the character, was an idiot for not ending it sooner. This is either a symptom or a cause of pretty disturbing emotional distance though, and is not recommended.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:13 PM
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I know how to put frozen waffles in a toaster.

Then go another step down the skill ladder: grits and ham; blueberry muffins from a mix; smoked salmon and cream cheese with bagels. Brunch is a meal designed to be prepared by the hung over.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:16 PM
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I'm pretty sure you're a more sophisticated eater than I am cook!

A) I like simple food too and 2) think of it as an opportunity to try more sophisticated recipes!


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:19 PM
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MMORPG seem to fill up a lot of time. Not very productive, though.


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:28 PM
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I'd try to imagine a fictionalized account of the relationship as if my partner and I were characters in a novel.

I am extremely prone to this mode of thought as well, but IME it is a recipie for disaster at every stage of a relationship, from initial meeting to divorce. Real life does not have the narrative structure of fiction!

But maybe that's a side issue.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:29 PM
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Real life does not have the narrative structure of fiction!

Next you're going to tell me I'm not really dating Veronica Mars, but I swear we've been hanging out practically every night for weeks!


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:33 PM
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I should have listed lesbianation, too.

I find the use of lesbianation effects in theater extremely distracting.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:36 PM
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75: I'm taking antidepressants too. And they are not working so great. I adjusted the dosage by half (on the advice of my physician, and now I am hitting a serotonin wall every day around 1 or 2. It is looking pretty bleak right now. And my back and leg hurt a lot. And I have a headache. And I hate my job and the person I work for. And I just want to crawl into bed and imagine I am building a house in the woods. Which I will never get to do, because I am stuck here in the city until I finally die of heart failure in my early 60s.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:37 PM
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Food! And not junk food on the couch, either. Cook really good meals for yourself

I speak from experience when I say that this can quickly come to seem pathetic. (But! I have 16 cups of extremely gelatinous pork stock in the freezer! Made with genuine feet!)

Also, I highly endorse x. trapnel's gigapedia endorsement.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:37 PM
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Um lol@therapy helping loneliness


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:39 PM
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I speak from experience when I say that this can quickly come to seem pathetic.

I apologize for asking you every time you make some elaborate thing if you plan to share it with a special someone. I cook for myself all the time (less so now that I have roommates, of course) without having anyone to share it with.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:41 PM
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|| As usual, this month's DC Bar magazine has a neat little bit of wisdom from Jake Stein. |>


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:41 PM
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Woof! Wooof! WOOOOFFF!!!


Posted by: bob's dogs | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:45 PM
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These suggestions seem like so much work. Depressing! What the hell is wrong with sex?


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:46 PM
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If you're really lonely, building yourself a chocolate fountain can backfire pretty badly.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:46 PM
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Get a cat. How can you be lonely when you have a new cat? And if that doesn't work, get another one.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:46 PM
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Eggplant just figured out why I have two cats.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:47 PM
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It's lonely at the top.


Posted by: Kobe | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:48 PM
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So, what's needed is advice for filling the loneliness *without* sex, drugs, or alcohol.

If sex, drugs and alcohol cured loneliness, then the histories of literature, the visual arts, the theater, popular music, economics, politics and philosophy would be awfully different, and Charlie Sheen would be the new Buddha.

([N]on-crazy) churches are good places to make new friends.

I wouldn't want to encourage anybody to believe that church provides anything social in nature that cannot be obtained elsewhere or, more perniciously, that he or she is missing out on some special comfort by not being religious. I am pretty fond of the Big J, but I can't say that I have felt less lonely in church than out. I suspect that the congregational comfort of church is not substantially different from that of any other gathering or group activity: e.g., a glee club.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:49 PM
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99,100:Pwnd pwnd pwnd by 95

So much for wit.

Shocked I hadn't seen pet suggestions above.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:50 PM
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is that a philosopher thing to see porn and masturbation as completely distinct from sex

IT'S A LEGAL THING: SAYING I NEVER HAD SEX WITH THAT WOMAN ISN'T THE SAME THING HAS SAYING I NEVER THOUGHT ABOUT IT WITH MY HAND IN MY PANTS.


Posted by: OPINIONATED BILL CLINTON | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:52 PM
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102: I thought about it, but it seems to me that without knowing more about the situation suggesting a pet was a little radical. (Yes, more radical than a roommate. After all, you actually have to live with the pet for the rest of its life. Or you should.)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:52 PM
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Um lol@therapy helping loneliness

Really, oh condescending one?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:53 PM
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I liked 95, bob.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 1:53 PM
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If anyone else wants her, I would be happy to give them my dog. Who cures loneliness for about 30 seconds, before "No, really, I would prefer it if your paw was not on my face" becomes annoying, which is followed by, "OK, time for you to eat dinner in a separate room." It's like having all stages of a relationship compressed into a 10 mintue timespan!


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:02 PM
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85: Noted! There should be a revolving Unfogged Bay Area dinner party thingy. I nominate nosflow first. Pork stock sounds like it would lead to good things.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:04 PM
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105: I don't think he's condescending; I think he's desperately lonely as well as in therapy.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:05 PM
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107: Step back from the dog and put your pants on.


Posted by: Opinionated Humane Society | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:07 PM
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107: But what about the long chatty conversations with other dog-owners as your dogs frolic about sniffing each other (or, in DogBreath's case, cowering fearfully and snapping at anyone who attempts to sniff her)?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:12 PM
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And the sex is great!


Posted by: bob's dogs | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:13 PM
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Back to the original post -- what are her resources in terms of nearby family or family-like friends? If she's got someone who she could plausibly sort of move in on; set up a regular once or twice a week "I'm going to show up at your house and cook you dinner or order takeout because I need to spend time with people", that seems like a good idea.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:17 PM
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I don't think he's condescending; I think he's desperately lonely as well as in therapy.

Oh, fine, be charitable. I took it as mocking my experience, and got defensive.

I definitely was very lucky to have a brilliant therapist who I also put up on a pedestal and so really wanted to please her, which was a very good combination.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:18 PM
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If you are willing to try new things, you can find a hobby that makes the papers.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:24 PM
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115 should be in the food thread. Gator tail good, fatty meat not so good (tastes fishy).


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:27 PM
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I'm guessing that very little of the meat on a gator big enough to pull a boat is good eating.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:28 PM
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I've not done any time in therapy, though my father was a psychiatrist, and I've certainly spent my fair share of time living with people who were in therapy. So I'm not really speaking from direct experience, but. What I've watched leads me to believe that there is a specific type of person for whom therapy works and if you're not that type of person, you'll mostly just find therapy to be expensive.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:30 PM
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Holy cow, he harpooned the thing? People still harpoon things?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:30 PM
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I would have, as the reader, thought that I, the character, was an idiot for not ending it sooner. This is either a symptom or a cause of pretty disturbing emotional distance though, and is not recommended.

Emotional distance is an underappreciated virtue. The trick is figuring out which things one must distance oneself emotionally from. Of course that, in itself, requires a certain emotional distance.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:30 PM
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A tail that big would make an enormous batch of jambalaya. Probably fine if it's cooked right and sufficiently spiced.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:31 PM
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there is a specific type of person for whom therapy works and if you're not that type of person, you'll mostly just find therapy to be expensive.

Oh, I definitely agree with this, too.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:32 PM
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Many good suggestions to the OP, and many of them have something in common: Work.

But I don't think that paid work has been specifically mentioned. This is a good time to throw yourself into your job (if you've got one and you don't hate it).


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:33 PM
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119: there is a specific type of person for whom therapy a harpoon works and if you're not that type of person, you'll mostly just find therapy to be expensive. the gator eats you.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:34 PM
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there is a specific type of person for whom therapy works and if you're not that type of person, you'll mostly just find therapy to be expensive,

The type of person that doesn't have really good health insurance?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:35 PM
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122: I have a poorly supported belief that this is true, and that I'm one of the ones who it wouldn't possibly work for. Which is annoying, because I am fairly strange in ways that could probably benefit from being straightened out somewhat, but I just can't imagine therapy being any actual use at all.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:37 PM
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But I don't think that paid work has been specifically mentioned. This is a good time to throw yourself into your job (if you've got one and you don't hate it).

I should note, this was what worked for me but there was a definite downside.

I ended up (metaphorically) breaking myself pretty badly, and it took quite a while to recover from that.

Happily I didn't end up resenting the person that I worked for at the time too much, but that seems like a very likely outcome.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:38 PM
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benefit from being straightened out

Chiropractors aren't real doctors, LB. Don't buy the hype.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:38 PM
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128: Chiropractors aren't real doctors

Arabist!


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:43 PM
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and that I'm one of the ones who it wouldn't possibly work for.

How come?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:43 PM
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I'm still chuckling at 124.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:44 PM
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126. I may have mentioned that my only experience of therapy ended when the doctor fell asleep in the middle of a session. I got up and left and never went back. Well, what would you do?

Fortunately I reacted well to the extent that I felt better about handling the situation than I'd felt about anything for a while. But it's been hard for me to take psychiatry all that seriously since (pace Apo's dad).

Anyway, I'm never going to recommend therapy to anybody I think might be fundamentally vulnerable, as opposed to "fairly strange", and that's why.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:45 PM
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130: Not Jewish.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:45 PM
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it's been hard for me to take psychiatry all that seriously since (pace Apo's dad)

He's been dead for almost 25 years, so no worries. I have the same basic take on the profession as you.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:49 PM
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I have also experienced a horrible therapist and a mediocre therapist. So I would not recommend therapy to someone without a hearty qualification about sunk costs about shopping around until you find someone brilliant, and how hard that is to do when you feel like shit.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:50 PM
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Happily I didn't end up resenting the person that I worked for at the time too much, but that seems like a very likely outcome.

Just to follow up on this, I feel like the big risk in throwing oneself into work as a response to depression/loneliness is that you're investing a big chunk of your sense of self into something that most likely isn't really under your control, or set up with mental stability as a goal.

I've quoted before the line that I like of one definition of stress as having, "responsibility for something without having authority over it." That happens a lot at work, and can be a pretty unpleasant sinkhole for energy.

But, as I said, I think it also had a lot of benefits for me personally.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:52 PM
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130: I think my odds of running into a therapist that I couldn't bullshit (while trying to be honest, but it's awfully hard not to bullshit about sensitive stuff) are fairly minimal. Largely because my experience of running into people I can't bullshit about sensitive stuff is pretty minimal. Mostly, the stuff that I think I could profit from being straightened out is stuff that I'm defensive about, and I've got some seriously good defenses going. (This is hard to describe without sounding all impressed with myself, which I don't mean to be -- I'd rather be less adamantly resistant to good advice and help than I am.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:52 PM
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I'm in an unpleasant fight over money with my ex-therapist, who more-or-less unjustifiably billed me for a month after I stopped showing up and then sent the bills to a collection agent. So, I'm not that happy about therapy right now. I'm considering just paying in order to avoid thinking about the whole thing, but it's a lot of money.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:53 PM
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119: Holy cow, he harpooned the thing?

Apparently he originally was a Yorkshireman. So maybe he was just cleaning the house.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:55 PM
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126. I may have mentioned that my only experience of therapy ended when the doctor fell asleep in the middle of a session. I got up and left and never went back. Well, what would you do?

Fortunately I reacted well to the extent that I felt better about handling the situation than I'd felt about anything for a while

Did you consider the possibility that this was a brilliant ploy by the therapist?



Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:57 PM
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I think my odds of running into a therapist that I couldn't bullshit (while trying to be honest, but it's awfully hard not to bullshit about sensitive stuff) are fairly minimal.

This is Jammies' position as well, and it's totally baffling to me. He'd say "It's just so obvious what the 'right' answer is, and so I just say it." I agree that it's totally obvious what the right answer is, but I was never tempted to do more than say "I know X is the right answer, but I'm not there." It would be like going to office hours and faking that you understand the help you're receiving. Which lots of people do, and I sympathize with, but what a waste of time.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:58 PM
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So yeah, therapy is probably not a good use of your time.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 2:59 PM
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130: I think my odds of running into a therapist that I couldn't bullshit (while trying to be honest, but it's awfully hard not to bullshit about sensitive stuff) are fairly minimal.

If they're good, and you've got enough time, that sort of doesn't matter. For one thing, constructing ever-more elaborate defenses to keep from getting at things you don't want to address means, sort of by definition, gaining information about the shape of those things.

Also, this:
I'd rather be less adamantly resistant to good advice and help than I am

Doesn't much sound like the process of therapy as I understand/have experienced it. It's far more internal than that.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:00 PM
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137: Well, you can find people to bullshit for free, can't you?


Posted by: Hamilton Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:02 PM
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I agree that it's totally obvious what the right answer is, but I was never tempted to do more than say "I know X is the right answer, but I'm not there."

Your bullshit-fu is weak. I can get into a conversation about sensitive stuff, and explain the facts in such a way that whoever I'm talking to insists to me that I was totally sane and in the right, and the only problem was that I'm being too hard on myself. And when I say I can, I mean I have a hell of a time not doing that.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:02 PM
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Advice from my breakup in late 2003:

Overstimulation was really helpful for the first 3-4 months. I made big plans for the future, drank tons of coffee, listened to loud music, called or wrote to friends old and new. The fact that the breakup had *finally* happened meant that I was happier pretty much every day than I had been during the relationship, and I kept reminding myself of that, even when I hit serious local minima. I moved into a co-op, so I lived with 25 mostly-friendly people. I traveled a lot, and I highly recommend that (although domestic airfare was quite cheap then) -- it gave me opportunities to visit friends and see art and pretty landscapes.

I think the real benefit of a lot of what I did was that it was all pretty explicitly temporary. I formed loose friendships that I didn't firmly expect to last forever. I moved into temporary lodgings to save up money to move permanently (then moved permanently). I abandoned a course of study when it seemed like it wasn't the right time (premed postbac -- boy, was it ever not the right time for that, but at least i was thinking about functional groups rather than my broken heart for a few months). Basically, I just threw a ton of things at the wall and took stock of what had stuck (sticking-stock?) after a year. But with respect to loneliness, which is kind of inevitable, I would say that trying to make acquaintanceships rather than friendships is really, really valuable. Don't let your fears about not yet being the person you want to be stop you from talking to people. They don't have to love you, nor vice versa. You do not have to be their girlfriend. In fact, almost no one wants you to be as available, well-explained, well-justified and bare-souled as a fucking abusive boyfriend does, so go into ALL your new relationships without fear of that. And if you get it from anyone, run, don't walk.

This process is slow, so take it in stages. Two years minimum for the readjustment. And... I don't know. If you decide to learn to knit, say, and you devote three months to it, and your hats come out lumpy and horrible and you hate it, it's better to curse your knitting than to curse your life. There are little things that can be sacrificed in the course of fighting major depression/addiction, like those hats, or your jump shot, or 1/3 of your savings account, or o-chem. Or all four. What matters is you.


Posted by: lurkey | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:02 PM
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144: Largely, it's what I get paid for.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:03 PM
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And when I say I can, I mean I have a hell of a time not doing that am a lawyer.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:03 PM
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143: If they're good, and you've got enough time, that sort of doesn't matter.

How on earth do you diagnose 'good'? I mean, I can imagine spending apparently pointless hours with a therapist who doesn't appear to be able to cut through my bullshit, and then realizing after 'enough time' that I was actually benefiting from the experience. But I can't figure out how I'd know that was likely to happen without spending a year and thousands and thousands of dollar on it without any reason to think it was likely to work.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:06 PM
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There might be a therapist or two in NYC with some experience working with the whip-smart bullshitter. Just maybe.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:06 PM
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147, 148: Pwning you makes all the time I waste here feel worthwhile.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:07 PM
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149 to 150.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:07 PM
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Lurkey makes great points in 146.


Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:07 PM
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I think my odds of running into a therapist that I couldn't bullshit (while trying to be honest, but it's awfully hard not to bullshit about sensitive stuff) are fairly minimal. Largely because my experience of running into people I can't bullshit about sensitive stuff is pretty minimal.

Right, but how many of them are professionally trained to deal with people who are bullshitting them, and how many of them do you explicitly start talking to because you've got some sort of an issue? And how many of them do you talk to about the same issues over and over and over again?


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:08 PM
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145: it depends on the therapist (some will definitely challenge their patients, which doesn't seem like it's likely to work for you) but there are certainly plenty who are perfectly happy to let you come up with whatever justifications you want, and are willing to let the process of introspection and elaboration do the work of helping you talk yourself out of things you might need/want to be talked out of. It's not oppositional, nor is it driven by assertions based on evidence.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:08 PM
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How on earth do you diagnose 'good'?

You find yourself sitting there and feeling uncomfortable and earnestly reflecting, rather than finding yourself feeling like you're winning at hood-winking them.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:09 PM
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Wait, this isnt Jungian play therapy?!?!

What the hell have I been doing here all these years!?


Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:10 PM
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Help me make NetworkX apply a reasonable scaling factor to the graphs it draws with matplotlib. Hey, LANL invented it - it's your responsibility in some vague distant way.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:11 PM
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I like the first few suggestions that reading books can help. If you're feeling lost and without direction then having a solid direction (i.e. forward in a large book or large series of books) can be really nice. If you're worried that trashy fiction is going to feel like you're wasting your time I recommend finding some long classic (but still a little trashy) novels. I had a great experience reading War & Peace post breakup. I could see other large similar undertakings (the complete works of Jane Austen?) also being good. Not only does it give you direction, but if you pick the right sort of book it also gives you perspective (see how miserable that character was 100 pages ago, and now they're all engrossed in something else).


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:12 PM
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149: well, if you like them and can make yourself go to the appointments, that's an excellent start. If you occasionally find yourself mildly surprised by something that happened, or thinking about it later that day or the next day, that's a good sign. If those are the conditions and you manage to do it for a few months or so, the sunk costs effect might start to play a role.

That said, if you don't want anything to happen, you can likely prevent something from happening. But if you can motivate yourself to go, then you're actually looking for somebody to work with you, as impregnable as you think your defenses are, and that is when you have a chance of being in business.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:13 PM
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Shorter 154: the lightbulb has to *want* to change.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:13 PM
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Another good way to deal with loneliness when not being in a relationship is that *not being in a relationship doesn't have to mean you live alone.* If you live in a house with several people then it's much easier to be social without working at it.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:14 PM
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Seriously, I'm not well adjusted enough to offer advice about this. I would say, however, that if you get into therapy/analysis, you're not meant to be immediately happier. Far from it. You're meant to end up better. As the man said, the aim is to replace the misery of the neurotic with the common unhappiness of the normal.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:14 PM
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Something I've been curious about -- people who talk about shopping around for therapists until you find a good one: how much time/money do you invest in a therapist before you give up on them? One appointment? Four? Ten?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:14 PM
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164: you will be perhaps unsurprised to learn that it varies. Certainly, if you go to an appointment and think "I don't like you. You're an idiot." then you can pretty much stop it right there.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:16 PM
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Somewhat related to LB's discussion and Alex in 163 and Sifu in 160, often the results are not readily apparent to you, but are very apparent to those around you.

This is a relatively common issue with pharmotherapy. The patient says "These meds havent helped me!" But, the patient's family thinks otherwise.


Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:17 PM
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164: Having been in therapy a few times, I can tell within one or two sessions if it's going to work out with a therapist. Even before I'd go in for a session, though, I'd have a chat either over the phone or via e-mail with a potential therapist, just to get a sense of whether or not we'd work well together.

Narrowing down by treatment modality is also helpful. I know from past experience that anyone who does Freudian analysis will not be right for me, so there's no need to even interview someone who does that sort of work.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:18 PM
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I'd say 3 sessions. First session is all background info. Second session your spidy sense kicks in. If the third session confirms your misgivings, voice them. If the therapist can address your misgivings, fine, but otherwise find someone else.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:18 PM
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This is a relatively common issue with pharmotherapy. The patient says "These meds havent helped me!" But, the patient's family thinks otherwise.

I've definitely been around this phenomenon.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:19 PM
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I also think, LB, that you almost certainly haven't come across the particular style of interaction that therapy can provide "in the wild"; it's pretty difficult to bullshit somebody who just listens supportively to everything you say. It's not like you're going to get to a certain point and they're going to say "You're lying!" or "You're cured!"


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:21 PM
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Although the horrible therapist I went to only took one session for me to ditch. And then I didn't try anyone else, and I really needed someone to talk to, at that stage. I can still get a bit angry at that asshole.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:22 PM
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Eh, I think I've been sounding like 'talk me into this', and I shouldn't be, because while I think I'm fairly goofy, I also don't have the energy to invest in developing the kind of expertise that seems to be necessary to screen therapists, as well as being seriously unconvinced that I'd get anything out of it. I get a little wistful when people who've profited from therapy talk about what it's done for them, but I really don't see myself getting there from here.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:24 PM
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it's pretty difficult to bullshit somebody who just listens supportively to everything you say.

It's true; Chaunda just absolutely trusted whatever I said, and that kind of 100% trust puts you in the position of being your own bullshit detector.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:25 PM
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I think I've been sounding like 'talk me into this', and I shouldn't be

Nah, you sound like LB, ie "it's fun to argue".


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:26 PM
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I also don't have the energy to invest in developing the kind of expertise that seems to be necessary to screen therapists, as well as being seriously unconvinced that I'd get anything out of it.

More importantly, you don't sound like you have anything that's really driving you to go into therapy.

(But do bear in mind that there are many different kinds of therapy. You don't sound like you'd get much from traditional talk therapy, but I suspect you'd find cognitive behavioral therapy far more congenial, particularly since a lot of the tools of CBT are things you do by yourself, without a therapist. Really, there's no point in bullshitting a thought chart.)


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:31 PM
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Anyone have any suggestions for someone who's a good CBT therapist? I've pretty much determined that talk therapy is useless (for my personality type) but CBT retains considerable promise.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:34 PM
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I've had three therapists, one terrible, one great, and one mediocre. I spent almost a year with the last one. I hate to call her mediocre, because I knew how hard she was trying, and even after I ended it, I got handwritten letters and emails trying to remind me that she was "there" for me if I needed her. But I felt like she kept thinking she was trying really hard to respect me, and that it made her feel good about herself to have accomplished this. There are only so many times someone can ask you if you think they respect you before you begin to suspect maybe they don't. It had not occurred to me that she didn't until it became the main focus of every session. She would also repeatedly insist that she really thought I was a brilliant, thoughtful, caring person and that nothing was wrong with me; why, then, did she think I was in therapy, and that I must not stop going?

It was weird. It was better than nothing for a while, but it was still weird. It never got any deeper or more helpful than conversations I'd have with eight or nine of my closest friends.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:40 PM
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Man, that sounds irritating.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:48 PM
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This is a good time to throw yourself into your job

With the caveat that, if someone should ever tell you that they've contemplated throwing themselves in front of a train "throw yourself into your job instead!" is a very bad response.

I want to endorse this Lurkey person in 146 as well. Delurkey, Lurkey!

LB, I suspect you'd benefit from the type of therapist my good therapist was -- wqhat appealed to me most was the intellectualisation of everything. Maybe because that promoted emotional distance? And appealed to my hyper-analytical mindset. I knew from the first session (with UNG) when, after a half hour of basic intake he offered his initial analysis and it more or less encompassed everything I had been feeling for an ungodly amount of time but couldn't articulate.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 3:56 PM
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Modern Love has the answer to the OP: meditate.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 4:03 PM
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180: not having yet read the article, I note with enthusiasm that the author's name is Pagan Kennedy. That is funk pucking rock.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 4:07 PM
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I can't imagine anything more boring-sounding than eight hours of meditation. Eight hours!


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 4:08 PM
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I haven't tried real meditation practice, but I could very easily spend eight hours not doing anything. I want to spend eight hours not doing anything RIGHT NOW.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 4:11 PM
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I actually rather liked that Modern Love.

And I'm horrible at meditation and Zen and all that, but I've found that I enjoy the poetry of devotees. Especially those who have left the fold.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 4:15 PM
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I also endorse, from personal experience, rooming with lots of people, but I had the good fortune of having the opportunity to do so with a bunch of people I knew and already liked.

I also endorse - contra pretty much everyone - the Rebound Relationship. But that, too, took place with someone I already knew and liked.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 4:16 PM
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This probably won't be much help except to the kind of person who tries to intellectualize themselves out of emotional problems -- but then again, there must be a few of those in here -- but I found this here book to be both interesting and helpful in a non-magic-all-better-now kind of way. If nothing else, it paints such an alarming picture of the consequences of chronic loneliness that it may scare you into going out and making friends.


Posted by: piminnowcheez | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 4:29 PM
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Sorry, just got back from concert, a bit inebriated, slowly catching up, but ... this cannot stand:

And there's less of an expectation [at Sunday brunch] that alcohol will be served as part of having a good time.

What?! What kind of barbaric community do you live in? The "u" in "brunch" is for "under the table."

Everyone knows that.


Posted by: x. trapnel | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 4:37 PM
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God, I love you people. Sincere thanks for all the helpful suggestions (and the unhelpful but funny ones). That Modern Love actually kind of rocked, and I've been meaning to send Dear Friend a book on Vipassana meditation. But really, now I think the real answer is that she should write a Modern Love column detailing her recovery from loneliness and abusive boyfriends!


Posted by: Regular Commenter Friend of the Dear Friend | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 4:39 PM
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Hmm, I found her conviction that she was doing the guy a favor by giving him a fake phone number rather dubious.
||
If anyone wants to feel a little worse about their own athletic accomplishments there is a documentary about Kyle Maynard on ESPN.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 4:46 PM
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|>


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 4:46 PM
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189.1: That was the part I didn't like.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 4:47 PM
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it's pretty difficult to bullshit somebody who just listens supportively to everything you say

Ummh....


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 5:03 PM
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Wow, still slowly catching up (inebriated!), but, uh, 146 is clearly The Right Answer.


Posted by: x. trapnel | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 5:05 PM
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My therapists had a court order and the keys. Resistance was futile, and transference mandatory. I loved them all.

As y'all know, they help me tremendously to become what I am today.

More seriously, I always did take resistance very seriously. If I wasn't getting what was needed out of the therapy, that was my problem, not hers. What mattered was not what she said or thought, but how I reacted to it.
Etc.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 5:23 PM
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Ok I'm like 123 comments in and have a dozen things to say but the big one is kind of a Captain Obvious idea. Recovering alcoholic? What about meetings? I know one goes to fewer of them a few years into recovery, but I'd think "just broken up and really lonely" is a great time to use meetings for support and connection.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 5:59 PM
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88 Next you're going to tell me I'm not really dating Veronica Mars, but I swear we've been hanging out practically every night for weeks!

You'd better be ready to get tangled up in ruined lives and shed blood, spanning continents. She'll break your heart, dude.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:03 PM
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Interestingly, she's only started going to meetings in the past few months -- the first two years of sobriety were a go-it-alone effort. But, yes, meetings are a good idea and to be encouraged. I'm also thinking that combining Stanley's therapeutic cleaning approach wit LB's advice to make a regular "date" to visit a friend could be nicely combine: my house could use the cleaning!


Posted by: RCFotDF | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:07 PM
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"Come with me, O despondent broken-up-with friend of mine. I shall take you under my wing, and you, well, you shall clean my toilet. It will set you free!"


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:12 PM
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R. Halford, I'm a big fan of CBT and have gotten quite a bit out of it in the past. I don't know how to find a good therapist in general, though, and the CBT guy I like is never on my insurance.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:15 PM
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I also endorse - contra pretty much everyone - the Rebound Relationship.

Oh definitely. And you always have to keep in mind both that it's a rebound relationship and that at some point you're going to lose track of the fact that it's a rebound relationship. But then it will all crash and burn and you'll remember that again. And it's good that way.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:23 PM
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I note with enthusiasm that the author's name is Pagan Kennedy.

She was born Pamela Kennedy, according to Wikipedia. But her name-change was successful enough at being memorable that all these years later I instantly recalled her article about a "Boston marriage". Funny; at the time I thought she sounded really young, but apparently she was already 15+ years out of college.

I'm with Eggplant's 189.1, although "dubious" is perhaps a bit kind.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:27 PM
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I believe that Pagan was the name (nickname) of one of the characters in the 80s potboiler-cum-miniseries Lace, in which Phoebe Cates speaks the immortal line, "Which one of you bitches is my mother?"


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:33 PM
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It drives me nuts that I missed this thread all day due to a late afternoon jaunt to Rikers Island.

So, I want to sorta poke at the binary of "therapy isn't for everyone," if it isn't too annoying. Therapy isn't for everyone at every time, for one thing. (Hey let's make this about me.) I hadn't been in therapy, but felt like I had some shit to sort, so I went back, and I'm feeling like it just is not what will help me right now. I'd quit, but I'm dreading the conversation about me quitting qua resistance, especially since I sort of yelled at him last time about a really annoying thing he does*, which makes great fodder for "it seems like maybe we touched on difficult material last time" and so merrily forth down that road, if I try to bail. Um so yeah, I basically believe therapy (given a good therapist, which is not a simple thing to define) is helpful to many people, some of the time.

I guess most everything else I was meaning to say Sifu kinda said. Most specifically the idea of pulling one over on a therapist, intentionally or not, assumes some things about what a therapist and client are doing that may not be true. I think the shorthand phrase/cliche one would find in some books in a 2nd year elective in an MSW program would be "it is the relationship that heals." This is of course modality-specific, but therapy probably needn't be about your therapist figuring you out, exactly. I know I've often had a sort of transferential thing with some magical thinking in it where I think "once I express everything fairly clearly, my therapist will say: Here Is What Is Going Wrong And Here Is How You Fix It."

*Somehow we repeatedly get on the topic of being a neat and tidy person, and how this is objectively good, and my slovenly ways can only be expressing something.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:35 PM
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advice for filling the loneliness *without* sex, drugs, or alcohol.

Hm. Yoga, dog-walking, and cooking? Lord, I don't know.


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:36 PM
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203.1: Next time, outsmart the po-po and you won't have that problem.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:37 PM
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Hello everyone. I'm the subject of the original post, for which I humbly thank my dear friend for opening up to discussion on my behalf.

I appreciate all the advice, truly. Worthy of mention, however, are a few things that might keep you all back on track. The abusive ex-boyfriend used to call me a "delightful bundle of neuroses." Here are some other zingers to add my already complicated mix:

1) I suffer from anorexia. It's certainly compounded by my depression. Hence, all the food commentary is sorta moot. I just don't eat.

2) Roommates? I live in a cramped house with my mother, who drives me insane, and my 10-year old son, of whom I have half-time custody. (Pretty much the vast majority of my kid-free time the last 3 years has been spent with the boyfriend.)

3) I'm bipolar (manic/depressive). On meds for that. Depressed. On meds for that. Have a lot of other health issues (meds for those too).

4) I am in counseling already with a competent CBT therapist, though she's been doing more talk therapy with me lately because I have all these, gasp, feelings that need to be voiced. Harumpf.

5) It's been a one-day-at-a-time, conscious decision not to turn to one of my other (poor) coping mechanisms, which is cutting myself. I used to routinely take a steak knife to my forearm when I was upset. Haven't done that in almost 2 years, since I've been properly medicated for the bipolar. That doesn't mean I'm not entertaining the idea of cutting at this very moment.

6) At least I'm not drinking. Or using.

7) I work part-time. I do give my all to my work, which is in a medical office. It's definitely something I look forward to that gives me purpose and fulfillment.

8) Drug/alcohol damage and what feels like adult-onset ADD prevent me from doing much leisure reading. That said, I have to get my ass in gear because come January, I'm taking an Intro to Psych class as a pre-req for going to grad school and getting a Masters in Counseling Psychology with a concentration in Addiction/Substance Abuse Therapy. School will be very, very good for me.

9) I've always wanted to take up boxing. I'm not really an athlete. But I think boxing would be a terrific way to vent.

10) I'm an introvert. Not terribly good at going out and meeting people. Frankly, the idea of it gives me a great deal of anxiety.

11) I'm already an anal-retentive neat freak, so my house doesn't need cleaning. I was cleaning the ex-boyfriend's house for $100 every 2 weeks as extra income, which will probably have to now be sacrificed. Not too much in the way of budget to go out and do big and wonderful things, i.e. travel, et al.

And the ex-boyfriend? He still wants me to be his "best buddy." He still wants me to come over and hang out with him (read: screw him); just not as "often" as I did before. Basically, he wants some of the comfort and security and companionship of a long-term relationship without having to commit to me and be able to get all he wants on the side while I wait dutifully in the wings.

The reason I've closed myself off to the notion of love or romance is because I honestly feel too damaged and heartbroken to ever want to put myself through this again. I don't think I'd survive. Plus, eHarmony thus far has only matched me with guys who are over 45 and live in The Dakotas or elsewhere prohibitively afar (I'm in Chicago).

So again, thank you for all the input and special thanks for the original post, my friend. Keep it coming, if you can, because I'm trying to be open to ideas, I'm just sort of a mess. I just wanted to give you all a little more intel about me and what's going on.


Posted by: Anniearchy | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:38 PM
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My advice is simple: Eat, Pray, Love.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:38 PM
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207 is probably better in the alternate reality where I remembered to make the author's name replace my pseud. Erm.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:39 PM
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And now the actual advice seeker shows up right when I'm being all non-serious. Crap.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:40 PM
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I note with enthusiasm that the author's name is Pagan Kennedy.

Falls a little short of Galaxy Craze mark, but still impressive.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:43 PM
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Plus, eHarmony thus far has only matched me with guys who are over 45 and live in The Dakotas or elsewhere prohibitively afar (I'm in Chicago).

I think I see your problem.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:45 PM
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209: At least you didn't use a term you learned from a Ke$ha song.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:45 PM
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The reason I've closed myself off to the notion of love or romance is because I honestly feel too damaged and heartbroken to ever want to put myself through this again.

Preach it, sister.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:48 PM
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213: wait, you're single, she's single, you're both lost in a mire of excruciating loss and sadness, you both comment pseudonymously on the internet... well, what, do I have to spell it out? It's like nobody's even seen Maid In Manhattan.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:50 PM
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Anniearchy

It has to be said: this is a great pseud.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:52 PM
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214: Nobody has, have they? Or was that "Gigli?"


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:55 PM
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...you're both lost in a mire of excruciating loss and sadness....

You have been eaten by a grue the blues.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:55 PM
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216: Yentl. Everyone has always already never seen Yentl.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:56 PM
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Dammit, Flippanter! Now I have that stupid song stuck in my head.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:58 PM
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How, exactly, did Yentl get financed and made? What about its thumbnail, nutshell, whatever-else-the-screenwriter-blogs-say presentation shouted "the populace will love this"?


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 6:58 PM
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I have Yentl on DVD.


Posted by: Anniearchy | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:00 PM
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Anyway, I know some 40 year old people in the Dakotas, but they're all either married or really bad risks for another marriage.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:01 PM
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I LOVE THIS MEET-CUTE!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:01 PM
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Nobody has, have they? Or was that "Gigli?"

I saw Gigli. It wasn't bad in the spectacular way my friend and I and the three queens two rows in front of us (the only people in the theater) were hoping.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:03 PM
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That Yentl puts the SHE in Yeshiva!


Posted by: Crtyptic ntged | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:05 PM
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219: I sympathize. I've been trying to get rid of this one for days.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:05 PM
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And now the actual advice seeker shows up right when I'm being all non-serious. Crap.

Somehow, I think she's okay with that. Though, 207 would have been even funnier if she was also an atheist!


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:06 PM
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How, exactly, did Yentl get financed and made? What about its thumbnail, nutshell, whatever-else-the-screenwriter-blogs-say presentation shouted "the populace will love this"?

I thought I remembered that Yentl made money, and I was right:

Yentl was a box office hit, opening at number 5 at the US box office and stayed in the top 10 for 9 weeks, peaking at number 3, in its 3rd week. Yentl went on to gross more than $40 million at the box office on a budget of $12 million. In rentals it also grossed $19,680,130 giving a total US Box Office gross of $60 million. In Australia the move grossed $1.7 million and 2.3 million in sweden.

To 206, hang in there. Boxing sounds like a great plan.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:08 PM
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225: Do they make an iPhone with an extra small key pad?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:08 PM
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Redacty, please.

Drug/alcohol damage and what feels like adult-onset ADD prevent me from doing much leisure reading

This! This happened to me for like six months when I quit drinking. The good news is that a) I got better and b) the literary tastes of morons with ADD are well catered-to.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:09 PM
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Also, I had no idea Flip was lost in a mire of excruciating loss and sadness. Try SSRIs! Or cooking!


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:09 PM
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Maybe people should move to Delaware to cheer up. I have no idea why, but any state that has both Biden and the witch-candidate must be interesting.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:19 PM
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232: Dogfish Head! Rehoboth! Mastercard! Easy access to other states!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:20 PM
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Somewhere in the archives, someone links to a thorough takedown of The First State, including a rant about the credit card companies and the exorbitant tolls on their little stretch of I-95.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:23 PM
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I've pretty much determined that talk therapy is useless (for my personality type) but CBT retains considerable promise.

I meant to reply to this earlier... Unfortunately I can't recommend anyone in your area, but you might want to check out the Anxiety and Phobia Workbook; it's not a replacement for therapy, but it'll give you some of the same tools a therapist would, which might be helpful while you're looking.

Obviously, if you've done CBT before and know this already, I'll feel like an idiot.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:24 PM
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233: I can get to like three other states easily. But, other than buying liquor, only Ohio is worth the trip.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:26 PM
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207 is funny. But please tell me that book/film/vehicle-for-Julia-Roberts craze is finally winding down? That's the sort of book that makes me hesitate to join a reading group (because in that case I'd have to read it, of course, and then I'd probably say something snarky and come across as a crank).


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:27 PM
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Oh, forgot to add that not only am I an active churchgoer, but I also play drums in my church's rock/pop contemporary praise band twice a month, which gives me something to do on weekends (practice/gig). Drumming definitely helps. So sorry, not an atheist. The ex boyfriend is, though!

He didn't appreciate it much when, in a fit of anger, I reminded him of Romans 12:19, where God implores us not to seek revenge on those who have done us wrong, that God will take care of vengeance and people will get what's coming to them.

Let's see, here, now....the ex-boyfriend is unemployed, can't find a suitable alternative apartment for when his lease is up @ the end of the month, and has had a miserable time with the women he's chosen to date in place of me. Thank you, Jesus, for the little ways you say "I Love You."


Posted by: Anniearchy | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:29 PM
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234: This Jonathan Chait rant, I'm going to guess.

Until one day several years ago, I, like most people, harbored no ill feelings toward the state of Delaware. I suppose in some vague sense I thought of it as harmless and even endearing, the way you tend to regard other small things, such as Girl Scouts or squirrels.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:30 PM
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I had no idea Flip was lost in a mire of excruciating loss and sadness. Try SSRIs! Or cooking!

I am afraid of drugs and not so interested in food as to put any work into it. Also, there's no pill or recipe that would fix an acute case of having wasted a third of one's life, played out the string to its thready end and found oneself neither wanted nor needed by anybody, anywhere, for anything.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:30 PM
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Jeez, Flip, you're one of my favorite commenters. I mean, really. Surely that helps, right?


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:33 PM
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Falls a little short of Galaxy Craze mark, but still impressive.

Wow. We're a little obsessed with Ms. Craze, aren't we? (I mentioned her not long ago, but that thread's fallen into the hoo-hole already; but I also mentioned her a few years ago, something I'd totally forgotten about. Yikes. Now I'm creeping myself out.)


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:33 PM
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Also, there's no pill or recipe that would fix an acute case of having wasted a third of one's life, played out the string to its thready end and found oneself neither wanted nor needed by anybody, anywhere, for anything.

I mean, you have to smoke it rather than take a pill, but there's always DMT.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:34 PM
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Indeed, Delaware's image as small and inoffensive is not merely a misconception but a purposeful guise. It presents itself as a plucky underdog peopled by a benevolent, public-spirited, entrepreneurial citizenry. In truth, it is a rapacious parasite state with a long history of disloyalty and avarice.

This is the best thing I've ever seen from Chait.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:35 PM
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Overhearing my mother cackling as she watches "Dancing With the Stars" downstairs and they're croaking out Katy Perry music isn't helping to improve my sullen mood.


Posted by: Anniearchy | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:39 PM
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Ditto 241. And seriously, however miserable life might be right now, you haven't wasted it. Whatever crap's behind you? That's the stuff you learn from that makes you the awesome person you are today and will be tomorrow -- it's the manure that makes your prize roses bloom! When you've played out a string to its thready end, it's time to find a new ball of yarn. Or a kitten. Kittens *love* the thready ends of strings.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:41 PM
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240 Flip, please tell us you're engaging in a bit of deliberate hyperbole. If not, and if you're opposed to treatment, or even if you're not, I suggest shutting things out with books, the internet, and uh, I guess food is out, but something else that works well to take your mind off your life.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:43 PM
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Oh oh oh Flip may I also recommend unfogged meetups? Worked like the dickens for me. Karaoke! Go for karaoke!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:44 PM
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something else that works well to take your mind off your life

"Dancing With the Stars," perhaps? You could comfort yourself with the knowledge that you at least are not listening to anniearchy's mother cackle. Annie -- at least you aren't unemployed and on the verge of homelessness.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:48 PM
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Just remember, Flip, tomorrow's always worse than the day after tomorrow.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:51 PM
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I unabashedly admit I get a major perverse pleasure in seeing my ex-boyfriend's life collapsing little by little.


Posted by: Anniearchy | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:55 PM
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Kind, passing kind words, friends, but Sifu, is it DMT* or karaoke?

* That's the machine-elf/Blue Fairy stuff in ayahuasca, right?


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:56 PM
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I think Flip left the meetup he came to before the eventual and inevitable karaoke.

I started coming to meetups for basically this purpose and for being the kind of thing I would never do, it's worked out pretty well.


Posted by: Mr. Blandings | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:57 PM
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252: that's the miracle of it! You don't have to choose!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:58 PM
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254: "I DO NOT SEE THE SONG 'THE VIBRATING CURTAIN SURROUNDS ME BUT I WILL SPEAK TO THE INFINITE DIMENSIONAL PEOPLE' IN YOUR CATALOG BUT I THINK I CAN MAKE IT WORK TO THE TUNE OF 'IF I WERE A RICH MAN' PLEASE KARAOKE COMPUTER"


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:59 PM
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Wait, so who is Blandings sleeping with?


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 7:59 PM
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256: oh man, who isn't Blandings sleeping with.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:00 PM
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Overhearing my mother cackling as she watches "Dancing With the Stars" downstairs and they're croaking out Katy Perry music isn't helping to improve my sullen mood.

Katy Perry and Dancing With the Stars are actually two things that can raise my mood, though that might not be true if I had to endure them sober, or with my mom.


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:04 PM
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247: I think Flip decided to learn to hang-glide, and flies around the world flinging himself off cliffs.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:07 PM
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I've skipped the past couple of meetups because I suspect I wouldn't be very good company.

My thoughts tend to bounce unproductively among "Fuck you, former colleagues to whom I have to be polite on the off-chance of a useful connection; fuck you to death," "I wish my conversations with [name redacted] weren't so much like being stabbed in the stomach" and "If I run into a college classmate on the street, I'll say I'm off to rehab? pimping teenaged runaways? writing a yoga memoir? to cut the conversation short."


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:11 PM
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...and I thought putting my pj's on at 7pm was a hoot. We've come to the exciting portion of our evening when I get to take all my nighttime meds, while listening ad nauseum to Cat Stevens' "Trouble."


Posted by: Anniearchy | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:11 PM
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because I suspect I wouldn't be very good company.

Unpossible.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:13 PM
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260.2: hee! Been there! Definitely try drugs on for size.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:14 PM
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...and I thought putting my pj's on at 7pm was a hoot.

I do this every evening I'm not going anywhere. The subtle joys of living alone!


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:18 PM
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The subtle joys of living alone!

If you live alone, why are you wearing pajamas?


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:20 PM
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I am now imagining essear in an union suit every night at 7 pm. With a glass of wine.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:22 PM
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Holy shit, Flippanter, I've been there.

This depression thread is for some reason, kicking in my moribund social instinct and making me think I should throw a party. Isn't the MLA in Los Angeles this year? Maybe I'll do something then and invite all Unfogged.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:24 PM
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I have always slept in pajamas, but one of the less than subtle joys of living alone is the ability to walk around the place naked whenever the spirit moves one.

In fact, when I lived in Humboldt Park, frequently the first thing I did in the summer when I got home was remove my clothing.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:25 PM
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Isn't the MLA in Los Angeles this year?

Yes, in January.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:26 PM
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What's a union suit? Googles... what the fuck use is a union suit. If for nighttime it would seem to make trips to the bathroom somewhat annoying.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:26 PM
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And, speaking of being pathetic and parties, have I ever mentioned here the time I threw a party and literally no one I'd invited came? My ex had also invited a lot of people, and all of her guests showed up. That wasn't humiliating at all.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:26 PM
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259: Paraglide and they're more like 30-60 degree slope hills before you get to a sharp drop,* really. I think the rotor effect over a true cliff would stall or collapse a frameless paraglider's airfoil shape.**

* I went over something almost like a cliff in Alaska in June. The video on my FB page doesn't show it properly, but it was pants-wettingly terrifying super-extreme to the max. Fist bump! [Collapses into whimpering heap at the recollection.]

** And kill me.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:27 PM
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270: For some reason it's often the go-to-pajama set in cartoons.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:27 PM
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Flippanter digs the mid-tempo electro-house.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:29 PM
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Wowzers, insults from the ToS and I'm not even a regular? And here I was worried I wouldn't be warmly welcomed into the unfogged fold. Bless you all.


Posted by: Anniearchy | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:30 PM
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272: I get a touch of the queasy on high bridges without a solid rail.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:31 PM
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the go-to-pajama


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:31 PM
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Bless you all.

Didn't even sneeze.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:32 PM
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People paraglide over cliffs all the time in the winter. They start upslope, get some speed, and whee... Lower chances of fucking up your legs as well. Or so I'm told; the paraplegic son of my dad's boss seemed like a good reason not to go paragliding.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:32 PM
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274: Speed wings: small, agile, unstable, very dangerous. My pretty bird full-size is probably twice the area of those.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:32 PM
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274: holy shit, when they bank to go through that fin-like protrusion. Intense.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:33 PM
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145

Your bullshit-fu is weak. I can get into a conversation about sensitive stuff, and explain the facts in such a way that whoever I'm talking to insists to me that I was totally sane and in the right, and the only problem was that I'm being too hard on myself. And when I say I can, I mean I have a hell of a time not doing that.

They may be doing this because they think it is socially required rather than because they actually believe it.

Of course therapists may also have a considerable financial incentive to flatter their patients. Seems like it would be tempting to help the patient construct some elaborate explanation of their issues that can be worked on for years without ever addressing their real problems.

Myself, I figure I know what my problems are and if I really wanted to fix them I could.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:36 PM
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Huh, it turns out that the MLA is being held pretty dang close to my house. If I did something, would anyone come? Do I want to know the answer to that?


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:36 PM
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279: That's what I meant: you're not just hopping off the edge like a BASE jumper.

A bad launch on snow is a lot nicer than on bare ground -- cold pants and feet are better than a face full of pebbles. Not that I would know.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:36 PM
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Remember, if CBT doesn't work for you, there's always CBT [NSFW].

Welcome, Anniearchy! Think of us as a highly-entertaining bipolar therapist with multiple personality disorder. Nay, tripolar. Massively Multipolar. Omnipolar.


Posted by: Hamilton Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:36 PM
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Myself, I figure I know what my problems are and if I really wanted to fix them I could.

Don't you go changin', James.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:38 PM
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282: Jesus, Shearer. My paranoid delusions did not need that scenario as input.


Posted by: Hamilton Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:38 PM
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272: Paraglide. Good. I hesitated between hang-gliding and parasailing, realized I didn't know the difference in the first place, and tossed a coin.

Hasn't that done anything interesting for your frame of mind? For your perspective on matters of life, love, beauty, and the rest of the kit and kaboodle?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:38 PM
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Huh. Broke my hyphen again. Don't remember when that happened; I hope I enjoyed it.


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:41 PM
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Fuck, Halford, I would probably come.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:41 PM
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better than a face full of pebbles

What you really want to avoid is a face full of Bamm-Bamm, because he's got that big club.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:44 PM
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275: He's special, isn't he?

Good luck with digging out of the hole you're in. It's no fun, but it does get better. Sounds like you're doing some of the right things. Now it's just a matter of adding in one more at a time as you're able. I'm in the late stages of a similar process. Finally to the point where the prospect of being genuinely happy seems plausible. It's a slog, but it really does get better.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:48 PM
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HamLove had hyphen restoration surgery?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:48 PM
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I can't quite decide if 291 is deliberately dirty or if I just have a filthy mind.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:49 PM
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295: Why choose?


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:50 PM
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295: The latter, but run that ball down the field, sister!


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:51 PM
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283: I'd be there.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:52 PM
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293: Twice now.


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:53 PM
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Omnipolar.

I wish to pronounce this with antepenultimate stress and then express that I have scarcely made her acquaintance.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:53 PM
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287: That possibility never occurred to you before? I'm 99% sure my mother's therapist pulled that with her.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:54 PM
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Driving on freeways in Brooklyn and beyond: pleasant or un-? I have to go to Long Island tomorrow night, and not the convenient NYC part. I'll probably take the train but the LIRR is so slow.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:54 PM
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297: carpool!


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:55 PM
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299: Well, by all means do, then, chap.


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:55 PM
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301: The BQE is kinda wild but not super crazy. Nobody seems to observe the posted speed limit of 35 (on the part I was on anyway).


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:56 PM
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302: Sure. We might have a bit of an issue settling on music for the trip, though.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 8:57 PM
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Hasn't that done anything interesting for your frame of mind? For your perspective on matters of life, love, beauty, and the rest of the kit and kaboodle?

Difficult to answer, but not for lack of material. It's common for bros and dudes to call a risky pastime "better than sex," but when somebody asked me just that, I told him instead that it was almost as good as love, though it's hard to explain how. I said once that flying unprotected was like being on fire, and that hasn't diminished. I've tried to explain it to one or two women, but one of them just thought I was nuts and another criticized my lack of ambition ("surfer bum," thanks).

I've never been able to explain it to [name redacted], but I did tell her once that it would do wonders for my self-esteem if she acted impressed by the mad risks I took to win her attention. The other day, though, she asked me whether I had thought of writing something about flying and I thought, but didn't say, that the experience would be as impossible to capture as when, with her, I felt for the first time that I wasn't incapable of happiness.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:01 PM
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People are making travel plans for your party, Halford, so you don't have much of a choice.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:01 PM
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The other day, though, she asked me whether I had thought of writing something about flying and I thought, but didn't say, that the experience would be as impossible to capture as when, with her, I felt for the first time that I wasn't incapable of happiness.

That's (a) some heavy shit, dude (b) better than most Modern Love columns already, so I think you should fill it out a bit and send it in.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:03 PM
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I misread "wasn't incapable" as "was incapable" but I stand by 308.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:03 PM
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I stand by 308, too! In any event, I am loving this: "I thought, but didn't say, that the experience would be as impossible to capture as when, with her, I felt for the first time that I wasn't incapable of happiness."


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:07 PM
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283: I'll be there!


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:09 PM
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309: oh but that would have been fantastic.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:09 PM
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I had the same misreading. You should submit that version to Modern Love, Flippanter.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:11 PM
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304: Thanks. I'll probably wimp out and take the train.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:16 PM
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308: Pride is a sin, but I would write ad copy for ThinkGeek's NerdStigmata(tm) temporary tattoos* before I wrote a "Modern Love."**

"Wasn't" is kind of the crucial point, nosflow.

312: That would be a Modern Love column.

* "Witness to LINUX? Called to be an Apple apostle? Microsoft martyr? Bear the holey [sic] marks of your personal Lord and Server on your brow, side, palms and feet! Available in iPhone white, Unix colorless, Google grey, Windows puce and Facebook Asperger's."

** "Modern Hate"? I'm listening.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:23 PM
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You'll be fine on the BQE, essear. The main idea is to understand that you are not a professional driver, and you don't need to keep up with the professional drivers. They know you're there; just be sure to use turn signals and watch for anyone coming up fast when you change lanes. But it's not as scary as it seems.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:25 PM
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"Wasn't" is kind of the crucial point, nosflow.

Yes, I know, but you have to admit that the sentence would also have worked swimmingly (albeit to describe something very different) with "was".


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:25 PM
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For the record, I considered "Appostle," but I like to think I have some shame.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:25 PM
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it was almost as good as love, though it's hard to explain how. I said once that flying unprotected was like being on fire

Both of those things make complete sense to me. I don't know who these people are who think you're nuts or lacking in ambition (first of all: ambition? What has that to do with anything?)

Anyway, thanks. I've had that feeling from time to time when sailing. Not that I'm a solo sailor, but wind and speed, not amplified by internal-combustion engines, do something ... I believe the standard word is "exhilarating." Beyond that though: takes you out of yourself, triggers a base joy.

I'd hoped that your depression over semi-recent events might have been lifted a bit by that.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:27 PM
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Is anybody else following the hilarious Make Magazine "downwind faster than the wind" flame war, featuring noted climate denialist and general sci-fi douchebag Charles Platt? No? Oh my it is delicious, in an incredibly, incredibly nerdy kind of a way. Turns out you totally can go downwind faster than the wind, unless you're Charles Platt and people are mean to you on the internet.

Nobody else cares about this at all, do they? Oh well.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:32 PM
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320: I wasn't terribly interested until I discovered that one of the people involved was M/ark Frau/en/felder. Got links?


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:36 PM
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320: Is Charles Platt the guy who got all huffy at the Internet a while ago after people at bo/ingBo/ing made fun of his "Wal-mart is great" piece?


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:38 PM
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When everything is right, skiing can give me that feeling. The combination of speed, a subjective sense of risk, physical exertion and a sense of total control, all while surrounded by gorgeous scenery is like nothing else.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:41 PM
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321: Yes indeed I do.

I won't link to Charles Platt dickery because... oh, what the hell, right?

My favorite part of the whole thing:

I know very little about Rick Cavallaro's cart, and am not very interested, partly because Rick has been extremely abusive, obnoxious, and condescending to me, and partly because, as I say above, I am quite willing to believe that his vehicle can move into a headwind.

Oh well that's fine then!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:43 PM
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322: yes! Yes he is!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:43 PM
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325 cont'd: I'll be going home now. And yes, I'm taking my ball.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:45 PM
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He seemed like a tool at the time and, by the by, evidence of the eternal return of the same right-wing/SFF dorkery.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:47 PM
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From Platt's wikipedia page: Platt is the nephew of Robert, Baron Platt, of Grindleford.

I had vague memories of him being a decent but not memorable author of short fiction in the mags from quite some time ago. Very not memorable. Nothing on the page rang any bells.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:53 PM
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Further to 319, there's actually something -- called "flow"? Maybe? in some book of a decade ago -- described in various literature. I was taken enough by the notion, and seemed to recognize it enough, that I dressed as "flow" for Halloween one year.

I'm pretty tired, and am off to bed. But I recalled this because some skiers describe a kind of love and fire thing in their experience.

I'm sure I'm completely mangling what this "flow" is supposed to be.

Huh. I wrote that 5 minutes ago, but am surprised on preview to see teraz mention skiing.

Bedtime.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:54 PM
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Further to 319, there's actually something -- called "flow"? Maybe? in some book of a decade ago -- described in various literature.

Csikszentmihalyi?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 9:56 PM
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I want to thank you all for making my loneliness a little less lonely tonight. Though hard to see the light @ the end of the tunnel, I guess deep down I know I'll be alright. I have my son, most importantly; my work, my band, my friends, school and God going for me. And now unfogged. :)


Posted by: Anniearchy | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 10:00 PM
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We'll probably turn on you if you keep using emoticons, in the interest of full disclosure.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 10:01 PM
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267.2: Yes, please. One long-time lurker and one wife-of-a-lurker who both went to grad school in southern California before landing facefirst in the panhandle will almost certainly be there if you do.


Posted by: Stranded in Lubbock | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 10:02 PM
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329: In his Heidegger book, Rüdiger Safranski spends a few pages on the old man's enthusiasm for skiing and suggests that he considered writing philosophy about it. Safranski links this to the issue of not-being-forgetful-of-Being, not without sympathy, I thought when I read it.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 10:04 PM
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Those faster than the wind carts are really neat machines.

Flippanter, 240 and 306 are great writing. When times get better you'll have new people. You're not alone in feeling like 240. Academic dead-ends are not exactly high points for anybody, also not rare.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 10:09 PM
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Flippanter's an academic?!? I thought he worked for some kind of a laser-wielding supervillain?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 10:10 PM
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Only a laser-wielding supervillain can save us.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 10:12 PM
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Oh, I guess I read too much into third of a life and stabbed in the stomach.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 10:12 PM
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I don't think Flippanter is an academic. Isn't he a lawyer?

In any case, Flippanter, you really are a fantastic writer. No matter what happens, you've got that going for you.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 10:13 PM
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You may be in despair, but at least it's exquisitely expressed despair.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 10:14 PM
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Hey, it's something.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 10:16 PM
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I'm kinda weirded out that nobody has seemed to mention getting a dog. You might hate dogs; this is a bit of information that I do not have! But dogs help with structure, meeting people, and a whole chunk of adoration in a wiggling and soft package. Plus the snoring: like a boyfriend, but without baggage.


Posted by: Annie | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 10:17 PM
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Plus the snoring: like a boyfriend, but without baggage.

OTOH a boyfriend (hopefully) won't pee all over your stuff.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 10:18 PM
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I'm kinda weirded out that nobody has seemed to mention getting a dog.

Bob did.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 10:19 PM
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a whole chunk of adoration in a wiggling and soft package

!!!


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 10:21 PM
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I'm torn between "was a lawyer, now nothing" and "was an employed lawyer, now un-," but yeah, one of those two.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 10:22 PM
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like a boyfriend, but without baggage.

You just made ogged's day.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 10:25 PM
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Csikszentmihalyi Never heard of the guy, but trying to quickly say his full name first hungarian style, then western style might provide a few moments of distraction.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 10:31 PM
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I do not understand inviting something into your bed that will snore but won't, uh, provide other services. If you're going to lose good nights of sleep to snoring, there better be some rewards.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 10:37 PM
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I know there's some low-hanging fruit there. Just ignore it.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 10:38 PM
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I'm torn between "was a lawyer, now nothing" and "was an employed lawyer, now un-," but yeah, one of those two.

Lots of people wish they were doing what you're doing now, Flippanter. Not that many people feel bad about not being lawyers. Personally, I can imagine few life changes more desirable than going from an office job to jumping off mountains.


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 10:38 PM
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Further to 330, Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi. And I can't begin to imagine how one would make a "flow" costume, but I sort of don't want to know. It's more amusing for me just trying in vain to visualize it.


Posted by: persistently visible | Link to this comment | 11- 8-10 10:40 PM
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I don't have a lot to add for Annie that wouldn't essentially be a kitten hanging from a branch with the legend "Hang In There," other than to note that if your current meds aren't working, tell your presciber and try different ones. I'm beginning to suspect that I'm adapting to my current one and am kind of dreading the process of tapering off while experimenting with another one. Hoping to make it through the next few months of work before that becomes a necessity. But seriously, hang in there/it gets better.


Posted by: Chopper | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 12:21 AM
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Also, taking (), Josh, and Ben's gestures in this direction as serious, can I offer to host a Bay Area dinner party, sometime in early December, say? I know Santa Rosa is a haul for lots of folk, and I don't have my Minnesota pantry's bag of tricks to make me feel comfortable promising good eats, but I think I can whip together an acceptable main course/vegetarian alternate. Just putting it out there, but the missus and I could use some social connection with adults.

Interested parties should ping me at the e-mail above.

(Halford, depending on the weekend and how things are shaping up between now and then workwise, put me down as a strong maybe.)


Posted by: Chopper | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 12:26 AM
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re: 206


9) I've always wanted to take up boxing. I'm not really an athlete. But I think boxing would be a terrific way to vent.

I don't have anything to add in general, other than sympathy, but re: this particular thing: boxing and martial arts classes can be surprisingly friendly and supportive places; there's something about combat sports that makes them -- the occasional arsehole aside -- challenging but relatively unstressful places to be. So if the idea of getting _really_ fit, and hitting people/things* appeals, go for it.

* the venting part is better on things, than people.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 12:40 AM
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Unless the one job to which I applied picks my name out of the going-to-interview hat, I will not be gracing the MLA with my presence this year.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 4:11 AM
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I was reminded of this thread just now while meeting up with Mystery HD Lurker, who used to play rugby. This might be worth trying out- similar to boxing in terms of, well, the violence, but I imagine it's cheaper to do, and very sociable. Though i guess that isn't really a winter thing. Hockey?
Oh, and since someone has to throw it out there- you could try World of Warcraft. Giving meaning to the lives of lonely people is kind of the whole point of games like that.


Posted by: X. Trapnel | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 4:42 AM
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356: Too true, sister. I get to be rejected by about 20 jobs before MLA, but I still have to send the applications. It does not help that one of my roommates is a philosophy professor who tends to go into lecture mode whenever the job market comes up. "If I see an application letter that isn't specifically written for my department in its entirety, I just throw it out. Or if it's from someone who still has a chapter or more left to write on their dissertation? Or not even any substantial publications? Are you fucking kidding me with this shit?" THANKS FOR THE SUPPORT.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 5:02 AM
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Seconding 355: the traditional remedy is to go off and join the Foreign Legion, and while this may not be entirely practical, there's something to be said for chucking yourself into a strenuous and unfamiliar environment. Book a skydiving course or a trekking holiday or something like that.

Freud was a reserve officer in the cavalry, and thought it was great. "I know of no better cure for neurasthenia than the inescapable must of military life".


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 5:08 AM
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I am sending flippanter and anniearchy mad love from narnia. I am about to be forced to go to sleep by my well-intentioned husband--a thing which I asked him to do earlier. stupid past self and your stupid, healthy ways. well, forced to turn out the light and not look at the internet; if I had possession of a machine that could induce sleep I would be rich beyond my wildest dreams of avarice, etc.
is the person who invented DMT rich?


Posted by: alameida | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 5:37 AM
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oooh, and you all that need cheering should laugh at the people in the vows column. you know you want to.


Posted by: alameida | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 5:38 AM
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360: How can you go to bed when it's time to get up and entertain me? Christ, your husband is selfish.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 6:42 AM
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Myself, I figure I know what my problems are and if I really wanted to fix them I could.

"I'm a man, but I can change, if I have to, I guess."

I'm pulling for you, James. We're all in this together.


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 6:58 AM
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363: That show was the best part of Canada.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 7:02 AM
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O.K. Some of the mountains are very nice, but it was the best part of Canadian TV.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 7:05 AM
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The best part of Canada is the maple syrup, the two-fours, and the milk in bags.


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 7:31 AM
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||

Quick gardening question: I have a rosebush in my back driveway that has not been well cared-for. I definitely need to prune the dead stalks off of it, but I just noticed a week ago that it sent up several super-tall (~8') stalks. Is now a good time to prune those back? I'd like to transplant it to someplace with better light and soil. Should I do that now or wait till spring or what? Any thoughts?

||>


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 7:35 AM
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||

It's been a full four weeks now that Slate's front page has been spotlighting Saletan's article about how he's sorry he hasn't been thinking about sodomy and female sexuality enough. WTF

|>


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 7:37 AM
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376: I'm not sure about pruning, but transplanting is definitely a fall/early spring thing - you want to move the plant while it's dormant. So now is good (or maybe in a week or two? Wait for a frost if you haven't had one?). Pruning, I think is also a late fall/early spring thing, but I'm less sure about that.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 7:39 AM
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The best part of Canada is the maple syrup, the two-fours, and the milk in bags.

You forgot back bacon.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 7:42 AM
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Not to mention single-payer healthcare, the Montreal Expos, and the Guess Who.

Okay, maybe I'm kidding about two of those.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 7:49 AM
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Tricia Helfer and low rates of gun violence.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 7:53 AM
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Matt Stairs.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 7:56 AM
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Lindsay Beyerstein, most of what is actually funny on U.S. TV and moose.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:12 AM
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Second best national anthem on earth (France wins by a hair).


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:18 AM
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Flip: Im sorry that you are going through a tough time. I hope it gets better soon.

Anniearchy: Welcome to Unfogged. I'm certain you will be a good addition here. Maybe we should have another Unfogged music post to welcome her????


Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:20 AM
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The traditional welcoming gift here (as you well know, will) is a fruit basket. It's nice to meet you, Anniearchy.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:23 AM
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He didn't appreciate it much when, in a fit of anger, I reminded him of Romans 12:19, where God implores us not to seek revenge on those who have done us wrong, that God will take care of vengeance and people will get what's coming to them.

Let's see, here, now....the ex-boyfriend is unemployed, can't find a suitable alternative apartment for when his lease is up @ the end of the month, and has had a miserable time with the women he's chosen to date in place of me. Thank you, Jesus, for the little ways you say "I Love You."

In all fairness, I'd be a little nonplused, too, if my ex's deity of choice, docile by reputation*, rained vengeance down upon me like the demon in a horror movie.

*Unless you are a fig tree in which case watch your back.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:27 AM
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Feh. Misplaced tag.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:28 AM
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Music thread! Music thread! Bitter breakup mixes for anniearchy, and up-pumping don't-stop-believing mixes for Flip?


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:31 AM
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You know what song has been running through my head non-stop since I first heard it last week? Lydia, by Two Cow Garage.

Doesn't really have anything to do with break-ups or depression, but it's catchier than swine flu.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:40 AM
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369: Thanks. That's kinda what I had thought. We have had several hard frosts already.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:41 AM
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Natilo, just to reinforce what LB said, I would prune it now if you're motivated, but wait until spring to transplant it, just because of the "you never know" around real freezes this time of year. Or you could wait for spring and see how much pruning the bunnies do for you in the interim.


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:51 AM
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I made a pretty good break-up mix a couple of years ago. Maybe I can peice it back together.


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:52 AM
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Or piece it even.


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:53 AM
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Bitter breakup [music]

"I Wish It Was Over" by Teddy Thompson?


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:53 AM
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Bitter breakup [music], cont.:

Agustin Lara "Piensa en mi" ("Se tienas ganas de llorar, piensa en mi...")
Lola Beltran "Soy infeliz" ("Vive feliz en tu mundo de ilusiones! No pienses mas en tu amor y tus traiciones!")

Less bitter:

Old 97s "The Curtain Calls"
Vetiver "Won't Be Me"
Cowboy Junkies "Sun Comes Up, It's Tuesday Morning" (downright exuberant, actually. I heard them once in concert and Margo Timmins described it as the happiest breakup song there is.)

And depending how bad the breakup was, there's some nice stuff in Strauss' Salome.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:21 AM
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I'm surprised NickS went for Teddy over Richard.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:24 AM
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I'm surprised NickS went for Teddy over Richard

I've been thinking, lately, that I really need to talk up that album (Separate Ways) more. It's remarkably good, though very bitter. And that performance is quite good, I think.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:26 AM
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St. Vincent & The National, "Sleep All Summer."

Though that's not necessarily for a hating-the-bastard breakup--more for a sad one. Oh, well.


Posted by: x. trapnel | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:28 AM
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"I've Got To Go Now" By Toni Childs.

Definitely more "traumatic break-up" than "sad break-up."


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:39 AM
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Bitter breakup albums

Pete Hamill Over

"One of the best albums ever made about the end of a relationship and the trauma that results, Over is the harrowing document of the failure of a long-term relationship Peter Hammill had been in." ...AMG

John Martyn Grace and Danger
Richard Thompson, Shoot Out the Lights of course
Lyle Lovett, Road to Ensenada
Beck, Sea Change
Dylan, Blood on the Tracks
Cure, Disintegration

Only listing ones I know well


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:42 AM
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I know, all guys. Liz Phair?

I blame the patriarchy.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:44 AM
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Linda Thompson was also involved in Shoot Out the Lights.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:46 AM
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KMFDM's version of These Boots Are Made for Walkin'.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:47 AM
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A breakup song that is not by Leonard Cohen is not the best breakup song.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:48 AM
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Oooh. Bitter break-up song: "Sea Anemone," Jets to Brazil.

and it's so nice
sleeping here all alone
with my ashtray and
white courtesy telephone
now I'm making out the shapes
like the shower rod - can it take my weight?

Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:52 AM
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"I wish my conversations with [name redacted] weren't so much like being stabbed in the stomach"

I can't recall if this has been said before but, despite her angelic perfection, you really need to get [name redacted] the fuck out of your life.

Or so it seems to this imaginary person on the Internet.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:04 AM
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390: Hey, that's a Crooked Fingers song. And a fantastic one.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:04 AM
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I think Counting Crows' "I Wish I Was A Girl" is about a sad breakup. A whole lot of their songs are, and that's probably my favorite of their songs.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:06 AM
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398: Yeah, what pf said, including the disclaimer about being imaginary and all.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:06 AM
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When my sister's marriage was ending, I put her onto the Indigo Girls. They've got some exquisitely depressing torch songs that are just right for people like me and my sister who regard celebrations of our own misery as ennobling.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:07 AM
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I know, all guys. Liz Phair?

Divorce Song.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:08 AM
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I love "Sun Comes Up, It's Tuesday Morning." The AV Club did a list of gleeful break-up songs not too long ago.

(Also, Chopper food sounds awesome.)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:08 AM
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Jane Siberry, "Love is Everything".


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:10 AM
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American Music Club, "I've Been a Mess".


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:12 AM
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Ass Ponys, "Grim"

(features my favorite lyrics about urination which I posted not long ago)


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:13 AM
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Ani DiFranco "Untouchable Face" is good, but probably too kind to the ex.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:20 AM
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I know, all guys. Liz Phair?
Divorce Song.

My parents divorced ~5 years back, after near on 30 years of marriage. Not long after, the family converged on Pasadena to celebrate Christmas together with my sister, who was doing her PhD there. (This was the christmas when my father gave us all--his now-ex wife, his son, his daughter, and his daughter's boyfriend--Hitachi Magic Wands. A rather awkward Christmas morning!)

Anyway, the point is, it was all very tense and emotional-minefieldy. On the drive back to the airport, I insisted on controlling the audio, and subjected everyone to a carefully curated playlist featuring Divorce Song--twice--and Go On Ahead. Because I'm super mature an asshole.


Posted by: x. trapnel | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:35 AM
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This was the christmas when my father gave us all--his now-ex wife, his son, his daughter, and his daughter's boyfriend--Hitachi Magic Wands.

Wow! Kind of expensively strange!


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:42 AM
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Sorry, I'm not adding anything helpful for Annie except that I like her already and am glad she's here!

I just felt I had to inform you that the episode of Go Diego Go we're watching featutes a leatherback sea turtle named
Tuga.

Oh, and peep gets to be my friend forever for citing that Jane Siberry. I love that whole album, but that's the song that makes me cry and for some reason it became sort of an anthem through this whole adoption thing.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:53 AM
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The version of the Peter Gunn theme with lyrics sung by Sarah Vaughan is nice and to the point.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 11:00 AM
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The Waitresses "No Guilt" (only can find this lame version on YouTube).
Laurie Anderson, "Sweaters".
Tonio K. - "H.A.T.R.E.D" ..."but then again maybe with the proper counseling we can work this out"

That's if you're breaking up in the late '70s to early '80s when I got my hand in.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 11:15 AM
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Wow, Thorn!

I love that whole album, but that's the song that makes me cry

Me too!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 11:29 AM
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Lonnie Johnson has a few nice ones:
http://www.ilike.com/artist/Lonnie+Johnson/track/When+You+Fall+For+Someone+That%27s+Not+Your+Own

http://www.ilike.com/artist/Lonnie+Johnson/track/Let+All+Married+Women+Alone

He's quite good, IMO underrated.

Nina Simone and Billie Holliday, of course, but there are a bunch of prewar recordings of less well-known women singers telling it like it is with shades of vaudeville as well.

http://www.ilike.com/artist/Lizzie+Miles/track/I+Hate+A+Man+Like+You

I particularly like songs where the sense of the lyrics and the style are at odds; Nina Simone's "Feeling Good", BH's "Don't Worry About Me" are both good. PJ Harvey's good as well, occasionally grim without irony.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 11:41 AM
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409 is an awesome story.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 11:57 AM
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up-pumping don't-stop-believing mixes for Flip

"Eye of the Tiger" on repeat should do it.

Actually, are there any such songs that aren't, at best, guilty pleasures?


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 12:09 PM
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There are no guilty pleasures.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 12:20 PM
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What, you're a Unitarian all of a sudden?


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 12:37 PM
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418: Pedophilia?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 12:38 PM
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Are we listing divorce songs? Because there's the toe-tappingly terrible
"Goin' Through The Big D (And I Don't Mean Dallas)"
which I secretly love.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 12:43 PM
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420. Bite your tongue. Or better, let me.


Posted by: David Thorstad | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 12:54 PM
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Huh. Scrolling up and reading the thread, it seems like there's actually interest in a January party. Fuck it, let's do this, I'll host a party. So, the MLA is 1/6-1/9; probably the nights of 1/6 or 1/7 would work best for me. Or should we do it a day before or after if people are stressing about giving talks about the New Historicism or whatever (n.b. -- reference may be both typically middlebrow and 10 years out of date). Or are people who are interested actually coming to the MLA?


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 1:54 PM
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If you do it on 1/6, you can make it a Three Kings Day party. Epiphany fun all around!


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 2:00 PM
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If you do it on 1/6, you can make it a Three Kings Day party.

George Clooney, Mark Wahlberg, and Ice Cube have their own day now?


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 2:01 PM
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"Eye of the Tiger" on repeat should do it.

Let's not forget John Farnham's "You're the Voice".


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 2:05 PM
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423: W00t!


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 2:06 PM
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424: And insist that all guests bring you gold, frankincense, and myrrh.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 2:07 PM
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I thank you all for the Angel from Montgomery earworm I've got going right now. Even better than the O Canada earworm I had this morning.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 2:17 PM
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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZlcP3FOTM0U

My favorite cover of it. God, this improves my day whenever it rolls around on the iPod.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 2:26 PM
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bring you gold, frankincense, and myrrh.

That could be misinterpreted.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 2:50 PM
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OK, here's a break up mix. It's bitter, but mostly not in a triumphant way, more ... wallowy, as per my own inclinations. A couple of the songs have been mentioned here already.

Impending Doom:
1) The Lucksmiths, "What Passes For Silence"
2) Elvis Costello, "Baby Plays Around"
3) The Mabels, "Unhappy Holidays"
4) Markéta Irglová, "The Hill"
5) Kate Nash, "Foundations"

Acceptance:
6) Billy Bragg, "Little Time Bomb"
7) Semisonic, "Gone To The Movies"
8) Belle & Sebastian, "Don't Leave the Light on Baby"
9) Marianne Faithfull, "Last Song"
10) Dylan Hicks, "Rocketship"

Heart Break:
11) Bettye LaVette, "Somebody Pick Up My Pieces"
12) Amy Winehouse, "Wake Up Alone"
13) Beck, "Guess I'm Doing Fine"
14) Beth Orton, "I Wish I Never Saw The Sunshine"
15) Ida, "Don't Get Sad"

Regrets:
16) The Lemonheads, "Favorite T"
17) Secret Stars, "Some Sinatra"

Anger and Recovery:
18) Final Fantasy (remixing Stars), "Your Ex-Lover Is Dead"
19) 'Til Tuesday, "(Believed You Were) Lucky"
20) Lily Allen, "Smile"


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 3:06 PM
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Yay, Ida! (For parochial went to college with reasons. Well, other reasons too, but.)


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 3:11 PM
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428: "And thanks a lot for the gold and frankincense, er, but don't worry too much about the myrrh next time."


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 3:11 PM
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That's a great mix, JP. I really love your last one(s) too, by the way.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 3:12 PM
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Thanks! It's the thing I got done today (well, some other things too, but today has been a rally bone-headed day for me).


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 3:20 PM
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That's right, I called a rally for bone-heads, but then I forgot where it was supposed to be held.


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 3:21 PM
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437: Already happened. National Mall. Glenn Beck hosted.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 3:22 PM
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I also realized that I can't really call Jimmy Pongo JP now, can I? At least it was clear. I listen to the last ones you posted on repeat far too often to admit.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 3:26 PM
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8) Belle & Sebastian, "Don't Leave the Light on Baby"

10-ish years later I still haven't totally sorted out how I feel about this and a few other songs on this album. It's probably not unreasonable to call Fold Your Hands Child the soundtrack to my first year of college.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 3:33 PM
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439.1: Yeah, one of the things I do not like about my pseud. Not that I'm going to change it and incur the wrath of you-know-who, have you. Although if I had to do it over again I would have gone with my alternate online gaming handle, StableMagma.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 3:34 PM
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Stormcrow didn't even post a mix, did he? I think that makes the initials mine by default.


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 3:36 PM
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This will make you feel 10x more sophisticated, adult, and in self command as a result.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 3:47 PM
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440:
Heh. It came out my first year of grad school. I'm not sure what the soundtrack to my first year of college was. Probably a mix of Fugazi's Steady Diet of Nothing and Michael Penn's Free for All.

What are the mixed feelings about? Fold Your Hands was a disappointment for me over all, but I think "Don't Leave the Light on Baby" and "The Model" remain among their best songs.


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 3:54 PM
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I really like "I Fought in a War" (and "Don't Leave the Light on Baby"), but "The Model" doesn't do anything for me.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 3:57 PM
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432: I am a Douchebag Deluxe for having discovered Bettye LaVette via The New Yorker but oh well. (This was this morning. I've only listened to a couple of songs but I'm intrigued.)


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 4:03 PM
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I don't know where my copy of Fold Your Hands is. It's the first album they brought out after I left Glasgow [as I've mentioned before, I used to share a flat with someone in B&S], so it's the first album of theirs I wasn't sort of vaguely aware of as it was being made. TBH, I don't listen to them that often, but when I do, it's usually the 2nd album, or the series of EPs that came out just after. Since I sort of know* some of the people the songs are about, they are a bit different for me.

* often only very vaguely, but Glasgow is a small place socially. e.g. the girl on the cover of T'germ1lk was in my tutorial group at Uni when the album came out.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 4:06 PM
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And Bettye LaVette has one of the greatest voices, ever.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 4:06 PM
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449

We (me, Snarkout, AND infant) will be going to LA during MLA even if I totally strike out on the job market, since it is so nearby and I promised to cast a vote for something or other to do with the status of "Cognitive Approaches to Literature." We'll come down sometime in the PM on Thursday and probably leave earlyish on Saturday. It seems unlikely that we will be top-notch party animals, what with the baby, but I'd love to see people. We're staying at the Wilshire Grand.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 4:11 PM
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My band often has to put on an iPod when we take a set break at a party. This past Saturday, I threw together a quick on-the-go playlist for this purpose. It seemed to be well received until it got to Belle & Sebastian's "Another Sunny Day". My iPod was promptly unplugged and replaced by something the partygoers deemed "more danceable". Kids these days!


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 4:12 PM
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I second 445, but wish to include "Family Tree" in the "really like" column.

nattarGcM ttaM, I now view you as the closest thing to a rock star that I know pretend to know over the internet.

I discovered Betty LaVette via apo here, and have been meaning to download that album where the Drive-By Truckers are backing her.

Also, I don't even own an awareness of what MLA stands for.


Posted by: persistently visible | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 4:21 PM
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Mawkish Librarian Ass'n


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 4:23 PM
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453

Sign me up!


Posted by: persistently visible | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 4:26 PM
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I'm not sure how I feel about their new one, Write about Love. I enjoy most of the individual songs, but the album as a whole hasn't grabbed me yet.

And, as I believe apo has observed previously, LaVette's Scene of the Crime is a master work. By all reports, don't start with her new album Covers of Random Well-Know British Songs.


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 4:29 PM
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re: 451

I know or have met quite a few well known musicians, via the Glasgow scene -- I've told an embarrassing Alex Chilton story here before -- but I'm a fat ageing not-quite-academic. Which isn't very rock star.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 4:32 PM
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Best impending break-up song: Townes Van Zandt's Tower Song.

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


Posted by: One of Many | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 4:39 PM
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I'm a fat ageing not-quite-academic. Which isn't very rock star.

I BEG TO DIFFER THERE


Posted by: OPINIONATED ELVIS PRESLEY | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 4:40 PM
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423: Hooray! Both of those days should work for at least one of us. It's pretty much impossible to anticipate interview timing, so just choose something that works for you. And thanks!


Posted by: Stranded in Lubbock | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 4:42 PM
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I'm afraid I'm still with Steven Wells on Belle & Sebastian. Actually I'm not afraid at all.

Here's an alternative Glasgow option. Nobody noticed when I blogged this, but perhaps it's a logistics thing as last.fm links don't always work.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 4:42 PM
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As B&S breakup songs go, "I'm Waking Up To Us" always seemed the most heartfelt. But who doesn't want someone to take some joy in something they do?

I continue to think ttaM might be too cool for the rest of us.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 4:47 PM
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454: It's grown on me a lot. But it doesn't seem all that memorable. I liked "I'm Not Living in the Real World" a lot better live. Never been a huge Stevie fan, though.

"I Want the World to Stop" is good. But I kind of want them to do something radically different and surprise me again.

God Help the Girl was
nice, though. Catherine Ireton's voice is a nice change from Stuart's.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 4:53 PM
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461:agreed


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 5:09 PM
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re: 459

I'm sort of with the negative take on some of their music, tbh. As I said above, I don't really listen to them much, personally. But as people, most of them aren't much like their public image at all. To the extent that I remember one early Melody Maker profile that was angry to discover that they liked football, clubbing and drinking . And Wells was really very wrong* about the actual tastes in music of the people involved which were a shit load more eclectic than the NME itself ever covered [although he was probably right about the 'whiteness' of the music they actually made].

Still I like a good bit of invective, and Wells' did capture something. There was a lot of that tweeness around on the early/mid-90s music scene and it _was_ fairly annoying.

* which extended to running club nights DJing precisely the kind of -- black, dance-oriented and/or electronic -- music they were accused of not liking.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 5:17 PM
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My general musical taste is extremely, passionately anti-twee. Nonetheless, B&S can't be denied; I see them as pretty much the apex of a truly horrible genre. Not that I'm their biggest fan or anything, but they are the best at what they do.

My sense of the cultural Zeigeist -- based on my ultrahip activities "working in a law office" and "surfing the internet" -- is that even white people want their music a little less white than 4-5 years ago.

In re: LA Party, I'm doing this, so people had better come. I think that Friday January 7 is probably best, but I'm open to other suggestions, and we can set up a planning thread at some point. James B. Shearer: You are in charge of the cocaine.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 5:39 PM
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How does one put together a mix like this? I've got iTunes. Can I do it with just that or do I need something more? Is there some sort of online guide for digital music illiterates that you guys would recommend?


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 5:41 PM
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James B. Shearer: You are in charge of the cocaine.

James is going to a party in LA?!


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 5:43 PM
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465: Tweety supplied a helpful rundown of his process (which apo then endorsed) the last time people were sharing mixes.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 5:47 PM
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This is embarrassing. I don't even know how to make a playlist. I click on new playlist and I've got a blank iTunes list and... Very embarrassing.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 5:51 PM
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468: drag songs over to it. Ta-da!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 6:04 PM
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Halford, I'll help you throw the party, in gratitude for it not being at my house. But yay!


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 6:05 PM
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But I kind of want them to do something radically different and surprise me again.

My impression is that most of the really funny, striking and apposite moments in Stuart Murdoch's lyrics derive from a take on a certain time of life, before you're fully fledged, when your world is comically limited - room, school, bicycle - and you're aware of it, but are not sure how to get beyond it.

You liberated; A boy I never rated; And now he's throwing discus; For Liverpool and Widnes

The problem for Murdoch, I think, is that he doesn't want to be stuck doing teenage material into his forties, and so has been trying to strike gold in other lyrical territories. But I don't know that he has as good an eye for other stuff. E.g. for what goes on when you're at least nominally in charge of your own life.

His tunes are still lovely a lot of the time, but they need that lift that they're not getting.




Posted by: One of Many | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 6:25 PM
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I went to see B&S when New Pornographers opened for them. It was right after that album with the soul horns all over it. I've always enjoyed hearing them but rarely wanted to put them on, and it was a little hard to fully enjoy the concert around so many people who were just twee-swooning all over the place. Especially because the beating love for the old songs led them to put the new, upbeat, high-energy horn songs at the front of the set, leading to an early peak and total collapse in my own interest when the arrangement got steadily softer and twee-er and everyone started calling out for Fox in the Snow.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 6:36 PM
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470: Awesome! Frankly, that has just made it a realistic possibility that the party will be a success.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 6:41 PM
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Unfortunately the tool for editing the file stuff is for Macs, I've got a Windows machine. Any editing tools for idiots to recommend?


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 6:47 PM
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472: When I saw them on that tour, I spent most of the show hoping they would play "Your Cover's Blown", their not-at-all-twee new B-side, and they finally did, late in the set. But they do always save some of the real crowd-pleasers off Sinister for encores.

That was also the worst set I ever saw the NP's play. Kathryn hadn't settled into her role yet, I guess?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 6:58 PM
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Just double-checked and yup, I definitely don't like Belle and Sebastian. I'm sure you're all shocked.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 7:36 PM
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The only B&S song I know at all is that one where they sing about Ho-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-rses. And I only really know that line. Which I am now singing over and over again. Which actually is kind of okay, because it is getting this song out of my head.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 7:37 PM
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I once made a mix composed entirely of covers of "Poupée de cire, poupée de son" and B&S were on it.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 7:41 PM
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white people want their music a little less white than 4-5 years ago

How many decades has this statement been true, I wonder.

Very many, I suspect.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 7:44 PM
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478: I love the bit where Isobel interrupts the announcer to say "Sorry - sorry if my French was bad".


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 7:57 PM
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I was about to say that "Upward Over the Mountain" is the one B&S song I know, but it turns out that is the one Iron&Wine song I know. "The State That I Am In" is the one B&S song.

Both were from a mix tape that I like a lot, but never felt inclined to look up their other music.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:02 PM
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I kind of can't stand Iron & Wine. Not sure what the deal is.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:05 PM
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476: I'm shocked and appalled.

I saw B&S on The Life Pursuit tour as well and while they did start the encore with "Judy and the Dream of Ho-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-rses" (and they didn't seem to hear, from where we were sitting, my shouted request for "Le Pastie de la Bourgeoisie"), I was struck by how much they had reorganized their repetoir to emphasize the less folky, more up-beat numbers. As to the whiteness of white people music thing, which, really, who cares, I think Northern Soul has been one of the key elements of their sound, probably all along but at least since Jonathan David.


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:07 PM
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I kind of can't stand Iron & Wine. Not sure what the deal is.

Probably because it's slow and mopey, or at least that song is. Which is fine for one song in isolation, but really, music is meant to have a beat.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:08 PM
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You mean, there's always been a dance element to their music?

/old person's joke


Posted by: One of Many | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:13 PM
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485 to 483


Posted by: One of Many | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:14 PM
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Just because a record has a groove doesn't mean it's in the groove.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:14 PM
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476: tweety--surprise yourself and everyone by liking belle and sebastian, since they are great. the machine elves told me.


Posted by: alameida | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:19 PM
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Meh. They aren't as awful as some other bands, but not really getting there. That guy's voice is kind of nails-on-a-chalkboard.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:23 PM
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If it helps, I also dislike the Postal Service.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:25 PM
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I always get confused and call the non-twee Decemberists song "Your Cover's Blown" and the non-twee B&S song "The Perfect Crime".


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:26 PM
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I DISLIKE THE POSTAL SERVICE TOO.


Posted by: OPINIONATED JOHN BOEHNER | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:29 PM
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music is meant to have a beat.

Lies.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:33 PM
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The only B&S song I know at all is that one where they sing about Ho-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-rses.

"Judy and the Dream of Horses".

Not the best song on that album by far!


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:35 PM
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That guy's voice is kind of nails-on-a-chalkboard.

Blame Nick Drake.


Posted by: One of Many | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:45 PM
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Man, what are you talking about.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:49 PM
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I have a music request for the party.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:52 PM
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I mean, I like Nick Drake - but I'm pretty sure he was the model for Stuart Murdoch's earlier vocal stylings.


Posted by: One of Many | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:53 PM
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"Judy and the Dream of Horses" is a great song about what to do if you're lonely!

If you're ever feeling blue, just write another
Song about your dream of horses
Write a song about your dream of horses
Call it "Judy and the Dream of Horses"


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:55 PM
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Sure, but, nails on a chalkboard?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:57 PM
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440 is true for me too, if you replace If You're Feeling Sinister as the album, because I am old.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:57 PM
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But enough of this—everyone listen to the song in 497.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:58 PM
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I have a music request for the party.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 8:59 PM
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goddamit.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:01 PM
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I have a music request for the party.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:02 PM
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I would attend the Halford party, but I have to be back in the soggy north by January 4th.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:08 PM
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That guy's voice is kind of nails-on-a-chalkboard.

I think Stuart's singing, and the technical skill of the band overall, improved a lot over the years. Though I like the sound of their early albums, even in the early years I think a lot of their best work was when they weren't sounding "like B&S"; take "Lazy Line Painter Jane", for instance.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:08 PM
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Looks like I need to come up with an excuse to go to LA in early January (a better excuse, that is, than "there's this party with people from the Internet" or "you're all driving me crazy and I have to go away for a bit").

On Belle and Sebastian, I'm at the point where I'm pretty sure I don't like them and don't want to listen to any more to find out for certain.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:09 PM
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Second best national anthem on earth (France wins by a hair).

Alanis Morisette's rendition of the US national anthem in that clip is really sort of embarrassing. In fairness to Alanis, the US anthem is impossible to sing unless you're 1. a professionally trained vocalist with an operatic range; and/or 2. Kate Smith. Also sort of embarrassing: the Canadian crowd sings its anthem on cue, and basically on key, because their spirits are moved because it's a hockey game.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:10 PM
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I just don't like the band, is all.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:11 PM
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501: I've probably mentioned here before how my first-year college roommate insists that the very first thing I did when moving into the dorm was to plug up a CD player and speakers and put on "Get Me Away From Here, I'm Dying". I'm pretty sure it didn't happen quite that way, though.... (I had him listening to B&S within a week, I think, and he's a more zealous fan than I am now.)


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:11 PM
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510: The gusty bus.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:14 PM
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I played B&S for my mom, who just got mad because they were ripping off Donovan.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:16 PM
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I really don't get the Donovan comparison, even though everyone including the band themselves seems to have made it. Maybe I haven't listened to the right Donovan albums.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:19 PM
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I like Donovan too!


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:22 PM
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I like 497.


Posted by: One of Many | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:27 PM
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to the op: go to church!

hmmm, maybe it'd be more fun to stay home and rub one out.


Posted by: OPINIONATED STUART MURDOCH | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:37 PM
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I have a music request for the party.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:45 PM
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I have a music request for the party.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:50 PM
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Probably because [Iron & Wine] is slow and mopey, or at least that song is.

The first Iron and Wine song that I heard was "Woman King" which I like and is not slow and mopey.

I have a vague sense of liking Iron & Wine, and I remember thinking that the sound on Our Endless Numbered Days was really well done, but I don't have a strong opinion.

I should listen to it again.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:54 PM
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I like wine.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:55 PM
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I like Donovan too!

I like your taste in Donovan.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 9:56 PM
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I have a music request for the party.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:00 PM
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I have a music request for the party.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:05 PM
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Did I mention this summer that I saw the Poème Symphonique, uh, "performed"? It was pretty awesome.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:11 PM
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509 -- I liked the way she sang ours: straight and human, better than the bombast one usually gets. And I also like that the crowd gets into theirs -- it's not their fault that the song is designed to be easy and fun to sing. And that they're watching their team playing in the championship of their national sport in their national capital.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:13 PM
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525: Really? Where? I've wanted to hear it live, but never had the opportunity.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:15 PM
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you can rub one out a church, too. maybe meet someone into s&m at bible study, if that is your cup of tea.


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:20 PM
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Well, i spent the whoel of the time iwas writing that comment thinking "wtf does fox news have to do with anything?"

:shame:


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:21 PM
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I liked the soviet anthem. I really like soviet art though. anyway singing rule britania while the walls cave is si grat


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:23 PM
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just to note, i am reading this thread from bottom up, so i hadn't seen any scottish music references


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:24 PM
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527: at the Berkeley Art Museum, part of a concert series booked by I believe Sarah Cahill. This particular concert was percussion-centric and all of the performances that actually involved humans (there was a second one which was pure process, in which four microphones were allowed to swing pendulum-style over speakers—Reich, I think) were performed at least in part by William Winant.

The standouts, aside from the Ligeti, were James Tenney's Having Never Written a Note For Percussion and a piece whose name I've forgotten by Lou Harrison.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:25 PM
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Solo for Anthony Cirone, apparently.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:26 PM
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And it wasn't this summer either. How about that.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:26 PM
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WTF does BEll&seb have FENDER CARS!!!@! font on their webtube?


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:26 PM
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in which four microphones were allowed to swing pendulum-style over speakers

I think in my old age I'm gradually becoming comfortable with saying that some things are simply too avante garde for me.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:32 PM
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srsly can't imagine bs as a psychadelic-drugu listen.

also, decided about 5 years ago nick drakc was just all wank.

432 wasn't bad.


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:32 PM
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Huh. I was just writing about Lou Harrison yesterday. Plate of shrimp.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:33 PM
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536: huh i always feel young and punk when i say how much i hate installation art.


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:33 PM
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471 reminds me of the fools who think you should make dramas of people older than high school.


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:35 PM
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Also I wish these kids would get off my lawn. By which I mean I wish the people having entirely too much fun* in the next hotel room should go to bed and let me sleep.

* of a non-sexual variety.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:35 PM
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* of a non-sexual variety.

Pop-o-Matic Trouble™?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:39 PM
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516 is exactly right.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:44 PM
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544

537.3:
I'll take it!


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:54 PM
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It boggles the mind that No Children never came up in the breakup song run.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 10:59 PM
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542:
For a second I thought you were talking about This thing, and I thought, "Man, that's the best thing ever!" But then I remembered it's the simplified version of parcheesi with the dice dome thing that sometimes works, and I thought, "Yeah, that's pretty OK, I guess. Doesn't really compare to sex, though."


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 11:01 PM
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that the experience would be as impossible to capture as when, with her, I felt for the first time that I wasn't incapable of happiness.

That is the saddest, most beautiful thing I've read since... well, if you must know, since Virginia Woolf's suicide note. Um. I really hope you feel better.

(You too, Anniearchy.)


Posted by: YK | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 11:06 PM
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545: NPR Music had a break-up song thread a little while back, and that was the one I saw nominated the most often. It seems to work best as a sing-along.


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 11:11 PM
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"Nothing Like You" by Frightened Rabbit (speaking of Scottish bands that are better than B&S) is more a "getting over a breakup by having casual sex" song, but that counts. Plus, I'm going to their concert tonight! I am very excited.


Posted by: x. trapnel | Link to this comment | 11- 9-10 11:51 PM
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This thread has been eerily (and rather horribly) on point for me -- a recent sad breakup, ensuing paralyzing loneliness and a college obsession with Belle and Sebastian -- yep, all there. Anyway, the advice throughout the thread, and in 146 especially, are smart and apt. I'll add the wisdom of my several minutes' ago experience -- it's way too early to listen to If She Wants Me, Marx & Engels, or, especially, anything on If You're Feeling Sinister. No really, don't.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 12:09 AM
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Not that I'm likely to be in LA in January, but I nominate FR's "The Twist" and "Keep Yourself Warm" ('You won't find love in a hole / It takes more than fucking someone you don't know to keep yourself warm.') for Halford's party playlist.


Posted by: x. trapnel | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 12:23 AM
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What's going off here? A zillion comments full of angst over whether B&S sound too white and then suddenly everybody's "I like Donovan!" Get a grip, people.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 1:08 AM
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re: 552

I don't personally mind bands sounding 'white' [although that isn't generally how my own personal taste in music runs], but I think there was something to the criticism at the time; in terms of the narrowness of influences on 'indie' music; which was engaged in a full-on ouroboros-like devouring of its own [mediocre] recent past. Although I'd have taken it more seriously as a bit of music criticism if the critics involved hadn't been pushing an equally narrowly-influenced set of bands where the only real difference was the volume of the guitars.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 3:01 AM
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Thanks for all the music suggestions! I really need to go out of the box and quit listening to the dark, depressing music that makes me feel like the loser in this equation.

I need to grieve and heal, but I want to do so healthily.

Don't know enough Belle & Sebastian to form an opinion, but I'll check it out.

Currently reading "Taming the Tiger Within: Meditations on Transforming Difficult Emotions," by Thich Nhat Hanh. Buddhist. Helpful. Encouraging.

Learning over the last few days to ward off my anger and suffering with mindfulness and acceptance. My ex still refuses to accept any responsibility for my present, depressed state of mind, but vis a vis one of my best gal pals (the original poster), I'm coming to accept the fact that *I* know he hurt me, that he's at the root of my depression, and I don't need him to validate that for me. I know what's going on.

After spending days cursing God for my misfortune, then relying on God to seek His revenge on my ex, which he's doing a beautiful job of handling on my behalf, I'm redirecting my trust back to the Lord and repeating the mantra I learned at AA the other day, which is "God's got it."

Meeting a good, positive girlfriend for coffee and catch up tonight. 'Twill be good for the soul.

Thanks again for all the support and suggestions. You've all helped me a lot.


Posted by: Anniearchy | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 7:22 AM
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509: An entertaining thing that happens at opening night at the Metropolitan is that you get to hear a room full of people who are really upset that they are not opera singers tear the national anthem a new one. I don't get to sing along because in 1992 or some shit my dad took me to the Cincinnati Opera's opening night and I sat silently with folded hands while people sang it (because I was 19 and this was a Very Important Symbolic Gesture) and my dad thought this was neat and told all his friends, so now as a little gesture of affection I do the same every year, despite the fact that I would sorta like to sing along. People probably just think I'm a Jehovah's Witness. Or Seventh Day Adventist. Or whoever it is I mean.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 7:44 AM
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556

Learning over the last few days to ward off my anger and suffering with mindfulness and acceptance.

I'll never sell as many books as Thich Nhat Hanh, but anger is an important and necessary part of the process. Also it gives you energy, unlike depression which just produces lethargy.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 7:48 AM
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557

I really need to take another look at the New Testament and Christianity. I didn't realize they were so much about vengeance. The Buddhist reading sounds helpful to me, though I suspect the Buddha isn't going to be as obliging about opening a can of whoop-ass on your ex.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 7:54 AM
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558

ANGER IS AN ENERGY
ANGER IS AN ENERGY
ANGER IS AN ENERGY
ANGER IS AN ENERGY

May the road rise with you
May the road rise with you
May the road rise with you
May the road rise with you


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 7:57 AM
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559

Jehovah's Witnesses don't do Christmas. Seventh Day Adventists may or may not do Chirstmas, I can't recall.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 7:57 AM
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560

"God's got it."

You'd think God would have taken some antibiotics for it already. Stupid Obamacare.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 8:01 AM
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561

B & S reminds me a little of early Caravan, probably because of the Sinclair vocals and minor key etc

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RexRohnp-zE

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bb3RyOooTT0&feature=related


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 8:07 AM
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562

559: They are vegans. This is the extent of my 7th-Day Adventist knowledge.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 8:13 AM
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563

555: I was once in a crowd (at the CSO) that sang Happy Birthday to Pierre Boulez. Everyone started in key -- it was weird. (Alas, I cannot sing for shit, despite the influence of the Head Chorister.)
I used to refuse to sing the Nat'l Anthem at baseball games, because I was too punk rock -- at a baseball game.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 8:17 AM
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562: That too. I assume that if you can't eat cheese, butter, and eggs, you may as well wait for the world to end.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 8:18 AM
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565

563: I was once at a concert in backwoods Arkansas where they began with the national anthem. The audience sang in four part harmony. I guess there are a few benefits from a heavy dose of old-timey religion.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 8:23 AM
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566

I was once at a concert in backwoods Arkansas where they began with the national anthem.

And then the death metal bands came on?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 8:31 AM
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567

And that they're watching their team playing in the championship of their national sport in their national capital.

Hey, if I had been there, I would have been singing along too. And I was crushed when they went on to lose to the Anaheim Ducks. But displays of patriotism do sort of embarrass me.

I'm trying to imagine Mister Smearcase as a Seventh Day Adventist. It's not really working for me.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 8:36 AM
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568

It seemed a little banjo-intesive for death metal. I did enjoy the songs of the Confederacy section, though.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 8:36 AM
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569

I can only assume this pause is due to the commentariat googling for banjo death metal.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 8:50 AM
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570

569: I'm busy pitching a show to MTV called Headtwangers Ball.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 8:54 AM
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571

569: Appalachian Death Ride


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 8:59 AM
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572

I'm trying to imagine Mister Smearcase as a Seventh Day Adventist. It's not really working for me.

Nor me, thought that might be because I've never knowingly met one.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 9:05 AM
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573

I've never knowingly met one.

My best friend in the apartment complex we lived in from 2nd to 4th grade was a Seventh Day Adventist. I started to say she was the first girl I ever saw naked, but then remembered that she would actually have been the second.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 9:09 AM
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574

I went to school with a pair of Seventh Day Adventist sisters who were total partiers. They did the balancing act of keeping their grades us and wearing long skirts and never cutting their hair and going to church and then drinking a lot behind their parents' backs.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 9:12 AM
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575

Random unsolicited thought for Flippanter:

Have you thought of abandoning lawyering and going off to teach or guide or whatever you call it paragliding? I'm not sure that this is a good idea, but it's where the narrative arc of everything you've been saying about your current life is seems to point; you didn't like lawyering when you were doing it, and now you've got an uphill battle to get back in; you should probably get away from everything that reminds you of your ex, including your ex herself; paragliding and similar are the only things you really enjoy; you don't seem to have any dependents or responsibilities that would make going off and leading a silly life genuinely irresponsible. And of course nothing's forever, if you did something along those lines for five years, you wouldn't be that much worse off for restarting a legal career than you are now.

I'm sure you've toyed with the idea -- it seems fairly obvious.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 9:13 AM
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576

||

http://leninology.blogspot.com/2010/11/massive-london-demo-against-cuts.html

>


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 9:15 AM
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577

It seemed a little banjo-intesive for death metal.

Spoken like a man who's never heard Wrnlrd.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 9:23 AM
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578

And of course nothing's forever, if you did something along those lines for five years, you wouldn't be that much worse off for restarting a legal career than you are now. you will have a Modern Love column and a book deal.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 9:23 AM
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579

Red Pocket's "Never Two Weeks" is a breakup song, I guess.

I think "No Children" is a little too much, among all of the appropriate Mountain Goats tunes. Why not something a little subtler, like "Snow Crush Killing Song"?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 9:25 AM
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580

576. So we're back to students trying to save the world single handed again. It's like the last 40 years never happened.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 9:29 AM
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581

It's like the last 40 years never happened.

Did you just wake-up in bed with Suzanne Pleshette?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 9:32 AM
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582

I really need to take another look at the New Testament and Christianity. I didn't realize they were so much about vengeance.

They're not, really. But Chan-Wook Park is, and I would recommend his oeuvre to Ms. Archy. Dude would fuck Jesus up.

paragliding and similar are the only things you really enjoy

They may be among the only things he enjoys at the moment, but he is a depressed person: that may say more about his ability to enjoy new things than it does about paragliding.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 9:33 AM
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583

re: 580

We'll get all the usual 'sympathetic' voices sighing about how the property damage and rioting undermined their credibility, and then a load of student bashing, often from people who will have forgotten they were once students themselves under far more privileged circumstances, and then a bit of cynical reverse-snobbery in the tabloid press.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 9:33 AM
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584

581: Nice reference!


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 9:38 AM
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585

Thanks. I enjoy mocking the pain of British people by using references they probably won't get.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 9:40 AM
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586

"God's got it."

I may really for real play this at the party, since it is one .my favorite things ever.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 9:41 AM
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587

Further to 583, I'm already reading 'friends' on facebook bitching about students. Arseholes.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 9:51 AM
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588

Interesting. I saw a family with girls wearing those tube-shaped ankle-length denim skirts in the grocery store this week, and they had an incredibly dour-looking mother. Did not seem to be Jews or Amish or Mennonites. Seventh-Day Adventists?


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 10:06 AM
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589

Seventh Day Adventism prescribes vegetarianism rather than veganism - most that I know are just vegetarians, but many eat meat as well - and while many follow the no-jewelry rule most don't wear the ultra-conservative clothing. (Of course, this is with the caveat that most of the SDAs I know are probably atypical.)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 10:16 AM
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590

Wait so isn't there some religion where you're not allowed to do stuff like sing the national anthem? Or am I making shit up, and really it's just the religion composed of 19-year-olds who are draping their authority issues over sketchily thought-out political discontents.


Posted by: Seventh Day Smearcase | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 10:23 AM
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591

587. The fuck? What are they doing that's any better use of their time?

(According to the Beeb, the official organisers' estimate was a lot lower than the SWP, but still good.)


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 10:29 AM
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592

Uh, are you thinking of Quakers not taking oaths?


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 10:30 AM
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593

590: Jehovah's Witnesses are not allowed to salute the flag of any nation, recite the pledge of allegiance, stand for or sing the national anthem, run for public office, vote, or serve in the armed forces.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 10:32 AM
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594

Uh, are you thinking of Quakers not taking oaths?

What? Then why do they have "Quaker" right on the box?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 10:32 AM
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595

590: I think Jehovah's Witnesses have some oddball prohibitions like that, but don't know exactly what.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 10:33 AM
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596

re: 591

You can never over-estimate how many people think it macho to slag off students. I've had lots of stuff about how they just need a good kicking, wouldn't know a day's work if it bit them, this is what I pay my taxes for, etc. All from people who know fuck all about what the cuts entail, were often students themselves under easier circumstances, and whose primary motivation seems to be tabloid-newspaper style faux-prole posturing. Cunts, the lot of 'em.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 10:34 AM
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597

Isn't there a Pythagoras cult that considers singing that far out of tune an insult to the gods?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 10:36 AM
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598

I had no idea that Jehovah's Witnesses couldn't do any of that. I had a childhood friend who was one and once I found out about the no birthday rule (and the reason for it), my curiosity died.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 10:37 AM
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599

596 is an keen insight that cuts across national boundaries.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 10:41 AM
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600

The set of rules for Witnesses is pretty odd. They also don't believe that Jesus was crucified on a cross but on a stake, and wearing crosses is forbidden as idolatry.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 10:43 AM
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From wikipedia:

Jehovah's Witnesses believe their highest allegiance belongs to God's kingdom, which is viewed as an actual government in heaven, with Christ as king. They remain politically neutral, do not seek public office, and are discouraged from voting, though individual members may participate in uncontroversial community improvement issues.[204][205] They abstain from celebrating religious holidays and birthdays and reject many customs they believe have pagan origins. They do not work in industries associated with the military, do not serve in the armed services,[206] and refuse national military service, which in some countries may result in their arrest and imprisonment.[207] They do not salute or pledge allegiance to flags or sing national anthems or patriotic songs.[208] Jehovah's Witnesses see themselves as a worldwide brotherhood that transcends national boundaries and ethnic loyalties


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 10:45 AM
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599: Two countries separated by a common idiocy.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 10:48 AM
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603

Jehovah's Witnesses believe their highest allegiance belongs to God's kingdom, which is viewed as an actual government in heaven, with Christ as king.

How are they doing with funding for public services up there?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 10:51 AM
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603: Fine, because they limited the population to 144.000 and took a hard line against immigration.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 10:53 AM
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605

They abstain from celebrating religious holidays and birthdays and reject many customs they believe have pagan origins.

Did not know this, and I'm really hoping the girls are home the next time we get Witnesses at the door. "Sweeties, these people want us to join them, but we have to give up birthdays and Christmas and Halloween. What do you think?"


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 11:01 AM
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604. Oh, right, I forgot that bit. As my BiL put it, "My father's house has many mansions, but not that many."


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 11:08 AM
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Not having known a Jehovah's Witness since 12th grade, my corpus of knowledge regarding Jehovah's Witnesses and their doubtless rich theology is Chus Lampreave as "Portera Testiga de Jehová" in Women on the Verge, when Carmen Maura asks her to pretend she hadn't seen her, saying "I'm sorry, but I'm a Jehovah's witness and my religion doesn't allow me to lie. I'd love to, but the bad thing about being a Jehovah's Witness is that we can't."


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 11:13 AM
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608

My ex still refuses to accept any responsibility for my present, depressed state of mind

Anniearchy, if you have any way of getting your ex out of your life, you should do it.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 2:50 PM
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609

On the curious religious front, I saw a bumper sticker today that said "My sufficiency is of GOD not GOV'T", which I thought was kind of a weird locution, but which google suggests is a fairly common biblical reference.

Anyway, the only thing it did for me was put that one Big Lebowski song in my head but with alternate lyrics: "I just walked in to see what condition my sufficient was in".


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 3:25 PM
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609.2: Kenny Rogers before the drugs made him all weird.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 3:33 PM
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611

I guess it was supposed to be "dropped in" not "walked in". SORRY.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 11-10-10 3:41 PM
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612

I want a bumper sticker which says: "PAY TAXES. Render unto Caesar that which is Caesar's"


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 11-11-10 4:33 AM
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608: AMEN!


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 11-11-10 4:40 AM
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614

Well, thank goodness the Democrats decided to put off dealing with the tax question until after the election.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 11-11-10 5:15 AM
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615

My partner the Opinionated Academic was on the demo, although she didn't storm the Conservative HQ.

Clean sweep of today's front pages. The Sky News coverage was weird - like a mashup of their stock TERRORISTS TERRORISTS FEAR FEAR FEAR story and the cliche EXAM RESULTS: BLONDE GIRLS KISSING story.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 11-11-10 5:33 AM
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re: 615

Yeah, if you want a demo to bring an issue to the front pages, invading Tory Party HQ will do it.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 11-11-10 5:46 AM
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Jehovah's Witnesses believe their highest allegiance belongs to God's kingdom, which is viewed as an actual government in heaven, with Christ as king.

Sometimes I think I overestimate the purview of post-Kierkegaard theology, and sometimes I'm sure.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 11-11-10 6:05 AM
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575: Occasionally, but I really doubt I'd be a good teacher because I'm a terrible narcissist my sensibilities are too refined I'm married to the sea I'm kind of a goof-off I take a really long time to learn anything purple monkey dinosaur of the Liberal Media.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 11-11-10 6:10 AM
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619

577: I ran across some band the other day that described itself as "lust metal" and now I can't find it. I know there are a lot of kinds of metal, but "lust metal" was new to me.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 11-11-10 6:38 AM
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614: honest to god, I'm generally very sympathetic to the 'don't attribute to malice what can be explained by incompetence' school of thought, and lord knows the Democratcs have proven themselves plenty incompetent from time to time, but turning this obvious a political (and policy!) win into this obvious a political (and policy!) loss seems difficult to explain any way other than them getting the result the really wanted here. The only difficult part of their dance--and the reason for all the public awkwardness--was their effort to try to make the base believe the party was on its side. They've done a relatively poor job of that, but, then again, if this is the result they were trying to achieve, I'm not sure they could have played the hand much better.


Posted by: urple | Link to this comment | 11-11-10 7:03 AM
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621

I know there are a lot of kinds of metal, but "lust metal" was new to me.

Gold, traditionally.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 11-11-10 7:20 AM
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622

619: Horresco Referens?

http://www.myspace.com/horrescoreferens


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 11-11-10 7:48 AM
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623

DBT-based therapies are also a good variant of a behavioral therapy. True DBT involves groups in addition to individual therapy and the therapists are supposed to support each other, but that's for really hard-core sufferers from Borderline Personality Disorder with lots of self-injurious bahvaior. It incorporates mindfulness techniques.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 11-14-10 2:24 PM
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624

177: Your one therapist who had to move sounded great, AWB. Did you ever consider going to the person she recommended?


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 11-14-10 2:30 PM
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625

622: That's the one!

624: Eh. Didn't have the money to continue at that time anyway.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 11-14-10 2:33 PM
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