Re: You probably shouldn't be having a party.

1

This is just the excuse I needed not to have a party!


Posted by: Merganser | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 8:59 PM
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"Hosts don't want to have to look after their guests' needs,"

Absurd. It gives you something to do.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 9:04 PM
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3

Thanks for the tip, NYT. My daughters' birthday is coming up in a couple of months.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 9:06 PM
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4

Some hedge fund guy probably started the trend accidentally as he attempted a little lawsuit protection. ("My client hired a professional bartender to ensure that no guest was served too much. If Mr. X drove into the East River, he must have been drinking somewhere else later.")


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 9:10 PM
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5

Sh-bam?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 9:13 PM
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6

My first guess would be "obscure shell-scripting utility".


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 9:14 PM
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7

I helped host a party tonight. I made alcoholic punch. I did not have a sh-bam, nor was I feeling like a dirt-bag. I just got tired and went home early.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 9:34 PM
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5:

Picture it with hand gestures.

Are you picturing them? The hand gestures?


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 9:53 PM
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9

Find: Bartender.
Replace: Stripper.

Better article.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 10:01 PM
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10

What would we do without the New York Times?


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 10:03 PM
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11

Now that I'm comparing it to what people pay strippers for a party, $100 to $200 really isn't much. Why are these bartenders' only clients the idle rich?


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 10:03 PM
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12

These people sound like assholes but, in there defense, they also sound pretty shit-faced.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 10:04 PM
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13

Find: Bartender.
Replace: Pygmy.

Better article still.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 10:05 PM
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14

I may be punchy from too much grading, but this

said his job was to get models and Saudi royalty into hot clubs

May be the funniest thing I've read in the Times in months.

I'm going to be up all night grading, so I'll need to save more of this for later.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 10:08 PM
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15

How hard do you suppose it is for models and Saudi royalty to get into hot clubs on their own?


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 10:11 PM
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16

I saw a guy get off at my stop with a whole bunch of liquor bottles and bar tools in a bag and I figure this is what he was doing. 2 is right; if I can't be looking out for my guests, I might have to fret or drink too much out of nervousness.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 10:20 PM
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17

You know you have arrived when you have Naomi Campbell on one side of you, King Abdullah on the other, and you are in a hot tub.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 10:20 PM
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18

The article kind of sounds to me like it was written with tongue in cheek.

Though (and this shows, I know, that I've never lived in New York) the thing that horrifies me most is the thought of parties involving so many people crammed into such a small space.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 10:34 PM
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19

This article sounds to me like the reporter attended a party with a bartender and decided to turn it into an article.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 10:38 PM
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20

14, 15 -- Opening scene, Days of Wine and Roses.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 10:39 PM
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21

19: Perhaps even the party hosted by Ms. Argiro.


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 10:41 PM
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22

21: Indeed.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 10:44 PM
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23

And is having a Mad Men vibe really a good thing? I mean, there's some general aesthetic whateverness about the show that's appealing, but in terms of alcohol specifically it just leads me to think unwanted come-ons, grown men pissing their pants, or accidents involving lawnmowers.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 10:47 PM
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24

I hope this article paid for a lot of solid investigative journalism somewhere.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 10:48 PM
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25

1. What fucking assholes

2. Not a new trend. I first saw it in college, and it's been going on ever since with anybody who has the money for it.

3. It can be very nice if the bartenders are good. Most of the time it makes no difference, even to the host. How much work does it take to lay out a bunch of booze and glasses on a table?

4. If I had the inclination to do a large party, and was loaded, I'd consider it.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 11:01 PM
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This is how we know that the Times is a journalistic entity and Wikileaks isn't.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 11:05 PM
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27

Does Julian Assange hire bartenders for his parties? Now there's a topic for some investigative journalism.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 11:16 PM
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28

The Daily Show already made the joke about "Sex By Surprize" being a drink consisting of kalua, ameretto and nyquil (or some such).


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 11:26 PM
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29

Ah, it was Drambuie, Kahlua and Nyquil. That makes more sense.


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 11:29 PM
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30

||

Fuck, I can't continue. Between the sleepy, and the very religious student who said her favorite bible passage was "give a man a fish, and he'll eat for a day, teach a man to fish and he'll eat for a lifetime," and the student who wrote "Deflation is actually a good thing. You should check out mises.org. It is a real life-changer" I am just worn out. Good night, and God bless.

|>


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 12-13-10 11:33 PM
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31

Based on those essays, rob, I'm thinking you're not really in a position to be putting in a good word with God.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:33 AM
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32

I'm surprised you didn't comment on "Everyone is going to stand within a 10-foot-square radius of the liquor".


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:00 AM
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33

How hard do you suppose it is for models and Saudi royalty to get into hot clubs on their own?

This is annoyingly ambiguous. Either he's employed by models and Saudi royalty to ensure that they can get into clubs into which they would not otherwise be able to get, or he's employed by the clubs to entice otherwise-unwilling models and Saudi royalty in, in order to give the clubs a bit of class.

Neither seem probable. It's unlikely, as teo notes, that models and Saudi royalty wouldn't be able to get into hot clubs on their own - unless the clubs were along the lines of the Athenaeum, of course. And it's also improbable that the average Saudi royal would need encouragement to go into a hot club. Normally the problem is getting rid of the blighters.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:54 AM
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34

Why are these bartenders' only clients the idle rich?

Emphasis on the idle?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:10 AM
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35

If I ran a club, I would certainly have a door policy of excluding saudi royalty. Models need closer definition. I've nothing against people who are photographed wearing sweaters for clothing catalogues; I would totally ban Katie Price and everybody like her.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:18 AM
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36

35: "model" is one of these English words like "cleave" and "dust" that has two exactly opposite meanings.

Cleave: to cling together; to split apart.
Dust: to put a fine powder on something; to clean a fine powder off something.
Model: someone whose job is to be photographed wearing clothes; someone whose job is to be photographed not wearing clothes.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 3:38 AM
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37

In the 50's and even into the 80's certain UMC types would make the food themselves, but then hire in "help," a maid of some sort, to serve it so that they could enjoy time with their guests.

If you could get a really good bartender who knew how to make a bunch of really good drinks and had access to good supplies, I think it would just represent an efficient division of labor.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 4:50 AM
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38

These people were rich, but we're not talking hedge fund managers.

Frankly, worrying about dishes in the kitchen isn't relaxing, and if I could have the deep ellum bartender or one of the people from cucci cucci at my party, I'd do it. I'm not going to be as good at making drinks as they are without a lot of time and effort (and money).


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 4:55 AM
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39

9: I have a friend who employed topless bartenders you might have enjoyed at parties at his place in Malibu. As far as I know they were working for tips. As it were.

I'm pretty sure that article's just one big piss-take.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 4:57 AM
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40


36 made me chortle in public.

30: I'm trying to imagine what subject is being taught here that both these lines could be thought somehow apposite. Freshman composition? Introduction to discredited sources of authority?


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:01 AM
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41

In the 50's and even into the 80's certain UMC types would make the food themselves, but then hire in "help," a maid of some sort, to serve it so that they could enjoy time with their guests.

I can attest that this practice did not die out in the 80's.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:15 AM
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42

hot tubs, hot clubs, whatever.

I should probably revisit the papers I graded after midnight last night.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:18 AM
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43

Nope, I was reading the papers carefully. He really did say: "Deflation gets a bad rap by the banking class and popular cable news shows, but it is a good thing. I would encourage you to visit Mises.org for economic philosophy that is life changing stuff."


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:33 AM
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44

43. Is he writing a paper or an Op-ed? does he understand that these are not the same thing?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:37 AM
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45

re: 44

I used to get that kind of thing when I was marking philosophy essays, too. Sometimes with references to the Bible, and/or some new age 'guru', sometimes the likes of Rand.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:41 AM
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46

And the other one:

"I think you can acquire wisdom from parables from the bible - some may be harder then others but they do publish teaching bibles. My two most favorites are "don't put a splinter in someones eye when you have a plank in your own" basically telling you not to judge others because everyone has skeletons in their closets. The other one I love is "feed a man a fish and he eats for a day - teach a man to fish and he eats for a lifetime" thats basically is talking about the importance of hard work and earning what you desire. "

This is an ethics class. I am cherry picking the oddest quotes, one from a student who decided to make up his own essay topic, and one from an online discussion forum.

I do like the idea of an "introduction to discredited sources" course. Ok, back to work.

I


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:48 AM
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47

I've been working very hard to get my students at Religious College to recognize that good art is almost never reducible to a "moral of the story" or "theme." They're pretty open-minded about most content, actually, but probably because they're so excellent at turning everything they read into a lesson for themselves. It's not as bad as the totally off-topic papers trying to get prof to accept Jesus or become a libertarian, but it gets tiresome wading through 36 papers that all say how the entire history of human culture, from cave paintings onward, is actually about this one nineteen-year-old girl and how she learned to apply its lessons to her life.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:49 AM
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48

46: Holy fucking shit. They do know they're allowed to read books before "quoting" from them, right?


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:49 AM
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49

Absurd. It gives you something to do.
The truly conscientious host allows the guests to fend for themselves.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:03 AM
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50

"feed a man a fish and he eats for a day - teach a man to fish and he eats for a lifetime"

That's in Revelations, right?


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:57 AM
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51

I'm guessing it's Matthew 4:19, just in one of the modern "translations".

"Don't put a splinter in someones eye when you have a plank in your own" is even more entertaining, IMO. Don't put a splinter in someone's eye, indeed.


Posted by: urple | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:02 AM
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52

"The central message of Buddhism is not 'Every man for himself'."


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:05 AM
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53

51: Actually, the original Greek says "Knock it off, you'll poke someone's eye out!"


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:14 AM
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54

"Jesus did not have wheels"


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:14 AM
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55

"It's easier for a rich man to pay for someone else to pass his camel through the eye of a needle."


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:17 AM
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56

Don't put a needle in a camel's eye without first letting a rich man poke your eye.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:18 AM
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57

36: I like the word "antagonyms" for those.


Posted by: Annelid Gustator | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:21 AM
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58

You know, I shouldn't fall into negativity or a culture of blaming students. My intro students have written many very charming dialogues, and they are really cottoning on to the interplay of thesis and counter example. They are a good bunch.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:21 AM
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59

Death to all those who would whimper and cry


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:22 AM
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60

feed a man to a fish and he it eats for a day

That's the Book of Jonah.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:23 AM
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61

First cast out the giant flopping-around ahi tuna out of your own eye; and then shall you see clearly to cast out the guppy out of your brother's eye. (Cf.: Fishin', heal thyself.)

vs

Give a man a splinter, and he'll probably just go "thanks for the splinter." Teach him to make his own splinters and he'll have like shitloads of splinters, probably more than he needs.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:25 AM
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62

Thou shalt not pay a lot for that muffler.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:33 AM
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63

Ustedes son los mejores!


Posted by: Pauly Shore | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:37 AM
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64

57: Not the same thing (and etymologically incorrect), but I've always had a place in my heart for the internal contradiction in "monopoly".


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:37 AM
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65

"Give to God what is God's, but respect the property rights of other people."


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:39 AM
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66

The Nice Guys shall get the babes.


Posted by: Awl | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:41 AM
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67

"if someone slaps you on your left cheek, turn the other cheek for that you may aim your cheek-lasers directly at them."


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:41 AM
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68

..and as the Bible says, "go know thyself."


Posted by: Awl | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:47 AM
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69

"Ephesians drive like this; Thessalonians drive like this."


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:49 AM
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70

69: NOT FUNNY, YOU RACIST ASSHOLE.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:53 AM
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71

"There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear ... laydeez"


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:53 AM
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11
Now that I'm comparing it to what people pay strippers for a party, $100 to $200 really isn't much. Why are these bartenders' only clients the idle rich?

First of all, I assume at least a little tipping is expected in both cases. And to answer your actual question, I'd guess that their only clients are the idle rich partly for practical reasons ($150 on a one-time basis might be no big deal, but that's not the only expense of a party and who can afford all that regularly enough for it to be routine? And who else has a kitchen or serving area that's large and well-organized enough to turn it over to a stranger? Who has guests who can be expected to tip?) and because it takes a certain attitude of entitlement and ostentation to hire someone to run your party. I'm not saying it automatically makes the employer a horrible person, of course, but it's not a good sign.

33
Neither seem probable. It's unlikely, as teo notes, that models and Saudi royalty wouldn't be able to get into hot clubs on their own - unless the clubs were along the lines of the Athenaeum, of course. And it's also improbable that the average Saudi royal would need encouragement to go into a hot club. Normally the problem is getting rid of the blighters.

The problem is, I'm guessing, that this "hot" club isn't "hot" enough yet that it can attract models and Saudi royalty on its own by sheer name recognition, so it needs to hire someone to offer personal invitations and targeted decor and stuff to lure them away from all the other "hot" clubs.

57: I like "autoantonyms".


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:06 AM
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$150 on a one-time basis might be no big deal, but that's not the only expense of a party and who can afford all that regularly enough for it to be routine?

Is throwing a party "routine" for most people? Why can't it just be an occasional splurge?

And who else has a kitchen or serving area that's large and well-organized enough to turn it over to a stranger?

Not the people in the article, from the sound of it. A 400 sq. ft. studio?

Who has guests who can be expected to tip?

The article says there is no tip jar; the tip is paid by the host.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:18 AM
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74

This is annoyingly ambiguous.

do you really want to know what model-Saudi guy does? A despatch from Richistan:

He is a "promoter". In the olden days and in Britain, this would mean someone who hired the DJs, printed the flyers and generally organised club nights for nightclub owners too lazy or untrendy to keep up with the difference between Deep House and Trance.

In modern times and in America, it means someone who pays money to hire a roped-off VIP section of a nightclub, and who takes a percentage of the money spent on hiring tables and buying bottles of liquor by the people thereincontained.

The name of the game would obviously be to fill it with formula 1 drivers and Saudi Royals. Such people are a bit thin on the ground, so "Lebanese businessmen" will do for princes of the desert, and "local crooks" will do for sports stars. And these have the advantage of a) being a bit more realistic to hope for since the "hot" clubs are never quite as "hot" as they wish they were, and b) spending quite a lot of money anyway.

The problem then arises because formula 1 drivers and Saudi royalty tend to bring their own girls, but investment bankers and local thugs don't. So you have to eat into your profits by providing free tables and vodka to superrmodels in order to have them sitting around and convincing the cash-spenders that you're offering them a good deal. There is obviously a fine line between this, and just being an actual pimp.

Then - oy, this business! - you have the problem that superrmodels aren't really any more plentiful than Saudi royals, and most of them aren't going to come to your crappy club. So "model" gets defined down to "any local girl who isn't obese". And yer in business. The consequence of this is that local pretty girls are sitting in local nightclubs being chatted up by local thugs and investment bankers, but somehow you're making a wage.

So yer man here basically exists to sell the concept of the one slightly Arabic-looking guy he knows, plus his room-mate's sister's friend who's smoking hot, to crappy nightclub owners, letting them believe that he's the right hand man to Prince Faisal, and simultaneously able to pimp out the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue.

It doesn't tend to attract many Albert Schweitzer types, as a profession.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:27 AM
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75

I'm not saying it automatically makes the employer a horrible person, of course, but it's not a good sign.

I'm not sure if this makes me a horrible person or you a self-righteous jerk, but $150 strikes me as fairly cheap for the convenience of not having to worry about mixing people's drinks, and classing things up a little bit from the college style "here's a bottle of Tequila and a red plastic cup." I guess the $150 is on top of the booze you'd have to purchase, and it's kind of a needless expense, but, without checking, I think the article said that the total cost for the party was around $600, which seems well within the range for a once or twice yearly splurge for a huge range of households.

Or, as Heebie says, basically this is just low-cost semi-catering.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:28 AM
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76

I think what makes the employer a horrible person is a) hanging round with nightclub promoters who say things like "if you don't have a bartender at your party you're a failure, and b) serving mixed drinks at their party. Seriously, this is the bit that doesn't make sense to me. People can sip beer and wine all night, but if you've got a bartender mixing cocktails, then either the party ends before 10 (which I suppose might be te case since promoter boy was able to go to it), or people are going to be a bit repulsively drunk by the end of it. I have nothing against getting repulsively drunk, obv, but it seems a bit just-out-of-collegey for a house party.

The only time one might be sensibly hitting the spirits at someone else's house would be in quite old fashioned parts of Scotland, in which case a) usually there wouldn't be women around, and b) you don't really need to pay someone to pour whisky into a glass.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:36 AM
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77

Wait, you don't serve mixed drinks at house parties in the UK?

My guess is that the party went from 10-12, and people got fairly, but not remarkably, drunk.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:40 AM
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74: .... so I'm guessing from that post that dsquared didn't always work for a bank.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:40 AM
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79

The whole "cocktail renaissance" thing seems to have evaded dsquared.

In any case, it's perfectly possible to serve (exciting, well-mixed) cocktails at a party that ends later than 10 and keep the terminal level of drunkenness hovering comfortably just below "sloppy". "Repulsively" drunk seems to imply just-out-of-college-style guzzling, which is not the expected mode when you're having drinks that require serious preparation.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:41 AM
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80

So the hidden assumption in 76 is that parties will run all night and people will drink the whole time? This is not really my experience, post-college. Or even during college, for that matter.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:42 AM
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81

Also, whisky is consumed in parts of the world outside of Scotland, sometimes even in the presence of the womenfolk. Shocking, I know.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:43 AM
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82

79.2 gets it right, and the cocktails don't even have to be exciting or well-mixed. Oh, and I should make clear that I am not endorsing hanging out with nightclub promoters or referring to anything as "my sh-bam."

Actually, what the hell does "my sh-bam" mean? I'm hoping that it's a reference to the awesome, beloved-by-French-teachers-in-the-US-in-the-80s film La Boum but that seems unlikely.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:45 AM
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83

I'm with Halford, particulars of this specific party aside, the general idea strikes me as sound.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:47 AM
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84

I googled sh-bam and found another response to the article.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:47 AM
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85

I know a bunch of very nice club/rave promoters but they very much are not involved with the kinds of clubs d^2 is talking. I also vaguely know some sleazy club promoters who are, but I try not to hang out with them, for obvious reasons.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:47 AM
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86

God you types. "Cocktail rennaissance" doesn't mean you can drink them all night, you know - there hasn't been an "ethanol metabolising renaissance" to go along with it. The point of cocktails is that you have one or two of them, before your dinner; or if you're pretending to be in advertising, two or three with your lunch. You can't drink cocktails all night - it would be like drinking whisky or brandy all night.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:47 AM
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87

You can't drink cocktails all night

And yet, I have.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:48 AM
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88

it is also physically possible to wear brown shoes in town ...


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:50 AM
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89

Oh god I've just remembered, is the "cocktail rennaissance" like that horribly embarrassing episode where you nerds decided that you were going to get really into beer, and that putting loads of hops in everything was going to demonstrate how cool you all were? In general, people who want to use everything pleasurable as an excuse for showing off their own cleverness should be diverted into motor racing, where at least they can do some good.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:53 AM
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90

Whatever happened to the entertainingly clinical sounding UK concept of the alcohol unit? A beer/glass of wine/serving of liquor will each have about an equivalent amount of alcohol -- there's no reason you have to get drunker on one than the other unless you're drinking fast. It's easier to modulate one's drinking with larger volumes of something weaker, but not impossible to sip cocktails moderately. I'll accept that it's hopelessly gauche (or whatever) to do so, because I wouldn't know if it was or it wasn't, but I've certainly walked home competent after a late night of drinking liquor.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:53 AM
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91

not impossible to sip cocktails moderately

one shouldn't, though, because they tend to taste foul when they get warm.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:54 AM
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92

And my suspicion that the real issue isn't that you can't drink cocktails without getting unpleasantly hammered, but that it's uncouth to do so, is confirmed by 88. Good to know.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:55 AM
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93

What's your problem with 77 and 79, dsquared? Parties can run for a few hours in the late evening, with people slowly consuming a few drinks over the course of the night. We're not talking downing a cocktail every ten minutes for hours on end.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:55 AM
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I'll accept that it's hopelessly gauche (or whatever) to do so

That is, I think, his point. The fellows at the Drones will never let you hear the end of it if you spend an entire evening drinking cocktails.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:55 AM
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89: Fuck off.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:56 AM
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I have often hosted parties where I drank cocktails all night, and still managed to get everyone out the door by 3, with a minimal amount of stuff-breakage or things-better-left-unsaid being said.

And here I thought those Limeys were hard drinkers. Hmph.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:57 AM
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There's a rule against brown shoes now?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:58 AM
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You can't drink cocktails all night - it would be like drinking whisky or brandy all night.

I don't quite see that this follows. A shot of whisky's roughly equivalent to a half-pint of beer in alcohol content. I don't see why you couldn't drink it at the same rate per hour.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:58 AM
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89: you will be shocked and offended to learn that enterprising young urban Americans have also discovered the joys of a well-cooked, thoughtfully planned meal. If only we had stuck to boiled sandwiches like gentlemen.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:58 AM
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Also, most of my really bad experiences with alcohol have come through drinking wine. With beer and hard liquor, it's easier for me to moderate my consumption, but even fairly crappy wine just goes down like grape juice and the drunk sneaks up on you.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:00 AM
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It's not "hopelessly gauche", 89 was a joke, ffs. It's just a daft thing to do, which is why the social convention exists. If you're drinking short drinks which are largely spirits, then it's quite difficult to keep track of your drinking, plus after one or two you really can't taste them. If you're standing around chatting and in general having a nice time at a party for a couple of hours, wine is a better thing to sip.

I mean, it happens to be unbelievably gauche to drink tequila with your dinner. But this isn't just because it's notthedonethingmydear, it's because tequila doesn't go very well with food.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:00 AM
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97: Only in 'town'. I expect the definition of what, exactly, constitutes 'town', is highly technical.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:00 AM
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Now I'm going to be seized with uncertainty every time I do anything, fearing that somewhere in the world there is an angry Welshman who disapproves. How can I carry on?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:01 AM
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But really, what can you expect from someone who prefers Budweiser?


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:01 AM
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The only thing tequila goes well with is vomit.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:02 AM
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101.1 isn't exactly wrong, but many of the cocktails I'm thinking of are things like flips and sours, which are not quite in the same category. But that said, there's still no reason a night spent drinking Sazeracs has to end in unfortunate personal revelations and/or puking. You just have to pay attention.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:02 AM
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pwned by 90.

dsquared is making his countrymen look bad. I've never been to a party and drunk nothing but cocktails, mainly because I don't much like cocktails, but I certainly can't see a reason why it's not possible. And people can certainly get unpleasantly hammered through just drinking beer or wine all night.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:03 AM
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89 is awesome. Bring back the fighting spirit!

TBH, I don't even understand the gaucheness concept as applied here. We are talking about a stand-around-and-talk party in the evening time, presumably after dinner, not cocktails before a formal dinner. Is the idea that you're supposed to have one cocktail and then switch to beer or wine, and anything else is gauche? (n.b. -- this strategy, as LB indicates, does not necessarily lead to being less drunk). There's certainly no rule in the US that would suggest that one would need to take that approach, in any setting.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:03 AM
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people who want to use everything pleasurable as an excuse for showing off their own cleverness

Indeed, it is quite impossible to like anything without being a giant wanker.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:03 AM
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shot of whisky's roughly equivalent to a half-pint of beer in alcohol content.

true when we were at school and 4.5% ABV was "export strength", but these days the beer would be quite a lot more. Which is more than offset by the fact that a single shot of whisky is a very small amount of liquid, and people tend to just finish it off in a way they wouldn't do with the beer.

In principle you could titrate, but in practice people who drink spirits all night tend to be the ones you worry about.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:03 AM
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101: Actually, I'm kind of with Nat on the difficulty of keeping track -- I find long nights of sipping wine kind of brutal in terms of getting drunker than I meant to, because it's continuous (I hate hosts who refill half-finished glasses of wine for that reason). Drinking liquor, and pausing between drinks, works better for me over a long night.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:03 AM
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I mean, it happens to be unbelievably gauche to drink tequila with your dinner. But this isn't just because it's notthedonethingmydear, it's because tequila doesn't go very well with food. we are not currently in Mexico.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:04 AM
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105: And destruction of property.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:04 AM
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I expect the definition of what, exactly, constitutes 'town', is highly technical.

Whatever it is, it clearly excludes the more fashionable parts of Paris and Milan.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:05 AM
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Now I'm going to be seized with uncertainty every time I do anything, fearing that somewhere in the world there is an angry Welshman who disapproves. How can I carry on?

This sounds like an excellent goal for a party: would this activity enrage a Welshman?



Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:05 AM
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98 is exactly what I do if I end up in a situation where everyone is drinking cocktails. I drink roughly one shot of straight whisky an hour.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:05 AM
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100, 111: Yeah, every "wow, I'm way drunker than I meant to be" moment I've ever had has involved wine.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:06 AM
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I've been out boozing and drunk nothing but cocktails all evening and not been gibbering drunk at the end of the evening. But it is true that a lot of cocktails contain a fairly high amount of alcohol by volume; the substantial point for a lot of them being that they contain three or four good sized measures of spirits but don't taste like drinking half a pint of neat whisky/gin/rum. I could easily see that a party where everyone was drinking mixed drinks would definitely result in a few people being utterly shit-faced at the end of the night.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:06 AM
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This sounds like an excellent goal for a party: would this activity enrage a Welshman?

Not nearly challenging enough.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:06 AM
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Which is more than offset by the fact that a single shot of whisky is a very small amount of liquid, and people tend to just finish it off in a way they wouldn't do with the beer.

In principle you could titrate, but in practice people who drink spirits all night tend to be the ones you worry about.

Or you could drink it in the form of a cocktail mixed with non-alcoholic things, instead of drinking a single shot of whisky.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:06 AM
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You know, you could start the evening with a couple of dry martinis, move on to a half-bottle of wine with dinner, enjoy a glass of port with dessert and then move on to a nice warm brandy or two and end your evening pretty impressively plastered, all without ever moving outside the comforting confines of the droite.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:07 AM
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And I can't imagine drinking so slowly that I was only getting through one shot an hour. No matter what I was drinking. And dsquared is right re: who you have to worry about at parties.

That said, Glasgow parties ...


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:08 AM
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108: You shouldn't have cocktails before a formal dinner anyway, it ruins the palate.

I would say that the problem with the highly-mixed, strongly-flavoured sort of cocktail is that it's very difficult to keep track of what you're drinking, because it tends to slip down rather easily so you forget that it's basically almost neat alcohol. (Much as Natilo finds with wine.)


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:08 AM
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pausing between drinks

this may be the issue - I would regard it as quite bad manners to fail to top up one of my guest's glasses, and might even inquire after the health of someone standing around at a party without a glass in their hand (if the response was "well you see I'm drinking vodka and I'm trying not to get to drunk", I'd probably assume they had a drinking problem).

I suppose that with knobby "flips" and "Sazeracs" and similar fanfaraw and godhelpusall, there would be a natural tendency to titrate the alcohol consumption, simply from the time spent standing around grinding your teeth and tapping your fingers while the host fucks around making the thing (and even more time while he explains to you at length why it's real and authentic and much better than ...)


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:08 AM
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Larb goes pretty well with tequila, IMO, but 101 isn't wrong.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:08 AM
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And dsquared is right re: who you have to worry about at parties.

This seems like it might be a cultural thing. If somebody at a party was doing shots, sure, keep an eye out. But I'd be more concerned about the party guest who was moving through fancy (high alcohol) beers at an impressive clip than the one who was gingerly sipping a Pink Lady.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:09 AM
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While of course I'm offended by dsquared's comments, I wouldn't say that he's terribly inaccurate. Drinking cocktails or pure spirits for an evening really does seem like a poor plan, in most cases.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:10 AM
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and even more time while he explains to you at length why it's real and authentic and much better than ...

Yes, god forbid anyone have to put up with a lecture on what is authentic and proper.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:10 AM
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a single shot of whisky is a very small amount of liquid

For you..


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:10 AM
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A few years ago we hosted a small (10-12 people) engagement party for a couple who were some of our closest friends. The groom's Best Woman hired a bartender who spent the party making cocktails and encouraging people to name ingredients they liked so she could improvise for them. It was a lot of fun, it let us enjoy ourselves and it was wicked cheap for the amount of Enjoyable Party Experience we were getting. It totally does not require assholery to make this happen or for it to be a good idea. The people in this story are assholes, yes, and all I can say is, well, welcome to "lifestyles" journalism.

Also, I cannot believe d^2 is the prude on this. Really? Cocktails = 10pm sleepy times? It's called pacing.

First cast out the giant flopping-around ahi tuna out of your own eye; and then shall you see clearly to cast out the guppy out of your brother's eye. (Cf.: Fishin', heal thyself.)

And lo, thou shalt drive splinters, then twigs and then larger things into thine own eyes for the Fish, squamous and slithering, silver-lined in the frigid glare of a bulbous, loathsome moon, approaches. (Dagon 4:19)


Posted by: Robust McManlyPants | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:11 AM
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Thinking about it, I had tequila with dinner -- in cocktail form! -- two nights ago. And did not even get remotely drunk.

I don't think I go through a standard-sized Martini much faster than I go through a beer; I guess the Martini has more alcohol in it, but not much.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:11 AM
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I drink roughly one shot of straight whisky an hour.

that's something like half a millilitre per minute? Presuming you don't have magic pipette lips, I guess this means that you're spending a lot of time standing around leaving your glass half-empty?


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:11 AM
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it's because tequila doesn't go very well with food.

If margaritas and Mexican food are gauche, I don't want to be the opposite of gauche!


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:11 AM
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re: 126

I don't think I've ever been to a party with 'fancy' beers, unless you mean ordinary continental beers, which, given that we are in/on-the-edge of Europe are probably a lot more mundane here.

But yeah, it's probably a cultural thing, beer with our mother's milk and all that.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:11 AM
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I suppose that with knobby "flips" and "Sazeracs" and similar fanfaraw and godhelpusall, there would be a natural tendency to titrate the alcohol consumption, simply from the time spent standing around grinding your teeth and tapping your fingers while the host bartender fucks around making the thing

I am being drawn ineluctably towards the conclusion that the Welsh simply don't know how to drink.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:12 AM
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129 only applies in 'old man' pubs in England. In Scotland standard pub measures are larger, and in a lot of pubs in England they dispense drinks as doubles anyway. It certainly never applies at home.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:13 AM
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Or you could drink it in the form of a cocktail mixed with non-alcoholic things

Well, yes. Gin and tonic, for example. Or whisky and water. But I don't really think of those as cocktails: cocktails to me have more than one alcoholic component and their composition is non-obvious.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:15 AM
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If the missing assumption is that all guests must be holding a full glass of alcohol at ideal drinking temperature at all times, that'd certainly be hard to do with anything but wine or beer. I don't, myself, mind having my hands free occasionally -- it allows me more scope for gesticulating wildly -- but if it's not allowed, then it'd get tricky drinking liquor all night.

(Actually, I'll often have a drink, then a club soda, and so on. But I really hate being hung over.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:15 AM
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the Welsh simply don't know how to drink.

Where, after all, did the Methodists originate?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:16 AM
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124: while the host fucks around making the thing

And thus back to the OP.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:17 AM
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If the missing assumption is that all guests must be holding a full glass of alcohol at ideal drinking temperature at all times

I was presuming this was the point of employing the professional bartender? (Also, a 10pm finish also makes the wage quoted in the article make a bit more sense).


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:17 AM
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re: 138

Well, yes, that would be the normal assumption. I think dsquared is basically right re: British attitudes to leaving one's guests drink-less. And I feel awkward as fuck at a party without booze in my hand. Made worse since i) I basically stopped smoking, and ii) smoking became roughly equivalent to mainlining heroin among polite people.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:18 AM
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The people in this story are assholes

Having finally read part of the story, I note that the "bartender" is filling up cups with punch, rather than making cocktails, and all I can say is, new career!


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:18 AM
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that the Welsh simply don't know how to drink.

Some of them anyway.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:19 AM
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I was presuming this was the point of employing the professional bartender

Now I am wondering if Dsquared has, in fact, ever been to a party. No, the point of the bartender is to mix the drinks, not to come around making sure that everyone's glass is full at all times.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:19 AM
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Mate, in that article he is, as noted in 143, ladling punch into cups.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:21 AM
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I'd be more concerned about the party guest who was moving through fancy (high alcohol) beers at an impressive clip than the one who was gingerly sipping a Pink Lady.

I'd agree with this and disagree with 134: I've never seen someone get violently drunk on cocktails, but I've seen it happen on beer any number of times. (Probably because the sort of person who gets violently drunk isn't the sort of person who asks for a Mai Tai.)


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:21 AM
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But I'd be more concerned about the party guest who was moving through fancy (high alcohol) beers at an impressive clip than the one who was gingerly sipping a Pink Lady Mister Smearcase.



Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:22 AM
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I note that the "bartender" is filling up cups with punch, rather than making cocktails, and all I can say is, new career!

$150 is a hell of a lot to pay someone to fill up cups with punch for a few hours. This isn't so much hiring a bartender as hiring a waiter.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:22 AM
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Now, if someone hired some Tom Cruise wannabe (or someone calling himself a "mixologist", and talking about steeping herbs in surgical spirit, or whatever's fashionable) for their party, then I hope I don't have to explain why that would be fearful.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:23 AM
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I was going to support dsquared in e-mail, but that sounded like more work. My own personal experience is that people who are used to drinking beer and wine (i.e. almost everybody I know) will drink cocktails way too quickly for purposes of being able to stand up until the end of the evening. People who are used to cocktails are, I'm sure, common in certain social classes, but not my own.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:23 AM
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147: I beg to differ.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:23 AM
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And while I'm editing:

Drinking cocktails or pure spirits for an evening really does seem like a poor plan an Unfogged meetup


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:24 AM
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This sort of thread is why we need more Russian commenters. An evening spent drinking nothing but pure spirits is known in Russia as "an evening".


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:26 AM
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149: I suppose approximately $130 of that is for being civil to assholes like promo-boy.


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:27 AM
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Good lord, you're right about the article. I don't think I've ever seen a hired bartender do nothing but ladle pre-made punch into red cups; often they'll have a "special" pre-made cocktail, but they ususually also have a semi-full bar and beer and wine and can mix drinks, etc. Now that $150 is looking expensive.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:27 AM
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137: technically, I guess those are highballs and, indeed, not cocktails.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:28 AM
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Everybody at the party last night really liked my extraordinarily declasse punch. It was just pineapple juice, seltzer water, ginger ale, light rum, dark rum and orange sherbet. But people were knockin' 'em back. I let people ladle up their own though.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:29 AM
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I've gotten very drunk off drinking drinks from every category of alcohol, and paced myself without much trouble, drinking drinks from every category of alcohol. These generalizations by category sound very in the "Beer before liquor..." high school wisdom vein.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:29 AM
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I'm getting hung up on the assumption that there's a problem if everyone is shitfaced at the end of the party.


Posted by: urple | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:32 AM
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Oh! Oh! I have something else to share: One of my friends has an annual cocktail party in December. For the past two years, the gimmick has been bacon-infused vodka, which is then used for making martinis some cocktail with vodka in it.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:33 AM
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re: 160

Someone needs to be able to hold the women's hair back while they puke; and separate the people trying to punch each other.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:35 AM
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One of my first - and worst - times getting drunk was off a bottle of Triple Sec. It didn't occur to me that I was the third sibling to raid my parents' liquor cabinet, and thus only the weird liquors would be left by the time I came along. Triple Sec is really gross by itself, let me tell you. Good thing I was so dedicated.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:35 AM
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If you give me some Grey Goose, I'll give you vodka-infused bacon.


Posted by: Opinionated pig | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:35 AM
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162: truly ttaM is the perfect host.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:36 AM
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When I was growing up, the only people I knew who were likely to get really drunk were relatives who drink only beer, mostly out of cans, and who would have thought that a cocktail or even a good single-malt scotch was a sissy drink.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:37 AM
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D2 is right about everything, and you kids, with your swipple renaissance, should get off my lawn.

(A single cocktail, consumed on the lawn, wearing white shoes, is acceptable, of course.)


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:44 AM
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Dustin Terry lives below the hostess. I bet she just invited him so he wouldn't complain about the noise, and now he's ruined her lifestyle article! Just ruined it!!!!


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:47 AM
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An evening spent drinking nothing but pure spirits is known in Russia as "an evening".

Indeed. I made up "Max's rule" for hanging out with my one Russian friend: You will always drink more hanging out with Max than you think you will, even if you've taken into account Max's rule.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:49 AM
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Drinking cocktails or pure spirits for an evening really does seem like a poor plan an Unfogged meetup

Which are usually on weeknights and so not likely* to last into the wee hours, so...


*"Not likely" may simply describe the state of mind that led to picking the initial venue and may not be valid for all meetups. User discretion is advised.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:50 AM
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I always liked the Soviet joke about the Russian guy who goes to visit friends in the US. After raving about the various differences between Moscow and New York, he goes on: "We went round to his apartment for a drink; he poured us a drink and do you know what he did then?"
"What?"
"He put the cap back on the bottle."


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:52 AM
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For those lacking white shoes, we have a winter house cocktail: wheat vodka, cranberry juice, small handful of frozen huckleberries. No one would care about having an employee pour the liquid, but the idea of letting the help fondle the 'blue gold' is a complete non-starter.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:55 AM
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You can drink nothing but straight up shots of vodka all night and not get silly drunk. I've done it a number of times. Nor do I see why drinking wine is more likely to get you trashed. I don't drink beer and never have, so I'll be either doing mixed drinks, straight hard liquor, or wine. From what I can tell it's the same approach as with beer, pacing. WIne is stronger than beer, but people seem to sip one and gulp the other. Same with cocktails. The way you end up unintentionally trashed once you've learned how to pace yourself, say by your senior year in high school, is when you get roped into one final nightcap at the end of things or multiple rounds of vodka toasts.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:59 AM
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I found this article puzzling. Don't they have at least one servant competent at making drinks? Who makes the drinks normally?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 10:01 AM
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I love the Slavic Liquor Vortex. Pure class.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 10:01 AM
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If you go to a bar in the US and order straight whisky, how much do you get? That's what I was thinking of as a shot, though I guess it's more two shots or three.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 10:08 AM
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The first time I got drunk was on my 18th birthday in Leningrad. (Yep, Leningrad: 1991) I imagine the reason I lived to tell about it is that I had a superego equal in power to the Russian love of vodka and I only had a few.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 10:09 AM
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177: Did they enforce a minimum drinking age in the Soviet Union?

Also, if you live a long life maybe your obituary will say that you were one of the last surviving Americans to get drunk in Leningrad.

Something to shoot for!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 10:23 AM
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I think if you "order straight whisky" and don't use the word shot, you get two shots. Maybe with ice.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 10:27 AM
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Maybe with ice.

Blech.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 10:34 AM
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I would have guessed typical whisky serving $\approx$ [better, nosflow?] 2 shots.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 10:35 AM
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The internet seems to tell me that typical servings of whisky or cognac are only 1.5 oz, which seems consistent with what confused me in Canada. I feel like all the restaurants around here give me more like 3 oz. Maybe I'm imagining things. Or they use miniature glasses that look more full, or something.

I'll stop talking to myself now.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 10:51 AM
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but the idea of letting the help fondle the 'blue gold' is a complete non-starter

It only gets blue if you keep it out on a cold day.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 10:51 AM
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I pictured the party in the article running approximately 10pm-1am, with people expecting to leave semi-sloshed for clubs or better parties afterwards. The three or four cocktails one might consume (and I can't help but believe that the article simply isn't mentioning the beer and wine that the bartender server also has behind the bar) during this period seem both adequate and appropriate. Also, as described in the article, he's not walking around with a tray. People are coming to him to refill drinks, so they are effectively self-pacing.


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 10:56 AM
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If you go to a bar in the US and order straight whisky, how much do you get?

It depends on where you go. I still tell the story of the time at my sister-in-law's small town WI wedding I asked for the Maker's Mark I had spotted behind the bar and was given a cocktail glass approximately 2/3rds full in exchange for the $5 I had found. In fact the young woman might have filled it all the way to the top if I had not begged her to stop.


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 11:01 AM
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gingerly sipping a Pink Lady.

A drink with egg whites seems like it would get particularly nasty if allowed to warm.

* * *

I find the reaction to dsquared's comments amazingly funny and somewhat out of proportion, and I think you all should know that.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 11:08 AM
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||

I just love how the media is reporting Assange's bail as if he's on trial for Wikileaks.

|>


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 11:18 AM
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162: truly ttaM is the perfect host.

Darn it, I had been the only person that google recognized as having used that phrase.

Also, the continuation of the quotation here seems apropos to dsquared's depiction of a party:

Usually Bucket No. 3 produced philosophical nostaglia. This intellectual condition, coupled with an acute awareness of our isolation, had the catalytic effect of producing strong anti-social tendencies in most of the guests -- this was the most critical time of the evening for any host, he had to evict or be evicted!

Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 11:18 AM
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It is true that in another age, mainly before WWII, people used to have cocktail parties. But they were designed not to last all that long. In my own misspent youth, and I suspect dsquared's, parties started at closing time after you'd been in the pub quite a while, and tended to go on till breakfast. Under those circumstances if you drank mixed drinks throughout, you'd end up in A&E (ER), either with acute dehydration from not taking enough fluids or from alcohol poisoning. Do your parties not follow this pattern?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 11:43 AM
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Thinking about it,"The Man In The Gray Flannel Suit" contains a memorably ghastly description of what actual cocktail parties of the 1950s were like, which ought to be required reading for the Mad Men crowd.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 11:54 AM
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parties started at closing time after you'd been in the pub quite a while

I'd say it's more common (though not always the case) that the parties I attend to go in the reverse direction. Or, more precisely:

(1) Meet at a friend's house with 3-5 other friends for a pre-party drink, maybe a light snack.
(2) Head over to party.
(3) Head to a bar for a night cap before closing.

Step #3 would be an option exercised by some but not all attendees of the party.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 11:54 AM
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I have a pathetically dull life, but I can't think of the last time I've been to a literal party at a friend's house -- socializing tends to follow the pattern of a number of couples over at someone's apartment with everyone's kids, and people eat and drink various things from around five or so until around ten, at which point we all realize that the kids need to get to bed and go home. Depending on what whoever's hosting hands me, I'll drink wine, beer, or mixed drinks, in any case slowly enough that getting the kids home safely isn't a challenge.

Up drinking all night, I haven't done for ages.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 11:56 AM
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Up drinking all night, I haven't done for ages.

But that's all going to change on FRIDAY, JANUARY 7 IN LOS ANGELES. Seriously, K-Sky and I are going to throw a party for anyone who is around then and would like to come. Maybe with a paid bartender, maybe not. This thread has been inspirational.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:03 PM
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Do your parties not follow this pattern?

No. A more common pattern for us is for people to come over in the afternoon or evening after a meal and hang out for 1-3+ hours until they have someplace else to be or we kick them out.

a memorably ghastly description of what actual cocktail parties of the 1950s were like

Also ably dissected in Susan Cheever's memoir, her father's fiction, and for that matter Mad Men itself.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:08 PM
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Thinking about it,"The Man In The Gray Flannel Suit" contains a memorably ghastly description of what actual cocktail parties of the 1950s were like

Described in this NY article.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:08 PM
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And I'm actually not sure why dsquared thinks people who serve cocktails at parties are influenced in any way by the show Mad Men, and I'm secondarily not quite sure why anybody would watch Mad Men and latch on to anything besides the fashion as a net positive in one's life.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:10 PM
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196: Just fits in with dsquared's understanding of Americans -- idiots that watch idiot box, and imitate what they see on it.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:13 PM
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Well, I do that, of course.

I should probably stop watching Saturday morning cartoons exclusively.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:14 PM
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I've always loved this New Yorker piece's implicit comment on the demise of that kind of culture:

He beamed at the approach of an icy Martini or a lowdown joke--he was an appreciator above all--and his sacramental phrase "The Great Transformation" (for the after-dinner moment when the company shifted from wine to Scotch) fell into disuse only after the advent of Pellegrino and good sense.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:15 PM
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I'm afraid I've never watched more than five or ten minutes of Mad Men because the characters all make my skin crawl. I love cocktails, sure, but when I imitate TV it's usually by solving a crime in a fashion that breaks all the rules of my profession.


Posted by: Robust McManlyPants | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:17 PM
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But that's all going to change on FRIDAY, JANUARY 7 IN LOS ANGELES. Seriously, K-Sky and I are going to throw a party for anyone who is around then and would like to come. Maybe with a paid bartender, maybe not. This thread has been inspirational.

I was going to ask if we could get a thread to discuss that. If it's actually going to happen, I need to get a move on on finding a place to stay.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:18 PM
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I imitate TV by videotaping people getting hit in the nuts with baseballs and then sending it in to TV, which I then imitate.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:19 PM
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191: pubs in England don't, or at least didn't, stay open long enough for that to be an easy option.

196: well, Mad Men is very popular and involves cocktail parties, and its popularity coincides roughly with the return of the cocktail party. Doesn't seem like a weird conclusion to draw.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:19 PM
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203.2: well yeah except not really. Mad Men premiered in 2007, when the whole cocktail kind of dorky scene was well under way, and anyhow the cocktail dorks tend to drink much different stuff (from a much different era) than seen on Mad Men.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:22 PM
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when I imitate TV it's usually by solving a crime in a fashion that breaks all the rules of my profession.

Robust is Monkfish.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:22 PM
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204: I cheerfully acknowledge ignorance of both "Mad Men" and the whole cocktail kind of dorky scene. Whisky and "The Wire" is good enough for me, or possibly Dutch beer and "Generation Kill".


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:23 PM
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197: Maybe dsquared actually has a more nuanced view of Americans -- they are fools easily riled up by any random insult on the internets.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:25 PM
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I imitate my television by sitting still in the corner and pretending to fire a cathode-ray gun. PEW! PEW! PEW!


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:25 PM
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Stanley is old-timey.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:27 PM
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actually i referred to MM because I'm browsing on a mobile device and "cocktail-recipe-book-have-you-tasted-my-unusual-bitters- its-more-like-haute-cuisine-really-actually-weve-brought-a-lot-to-this-neighbourhood-SWPL-cockmerchants" seemed like a bit of a chore to type.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:28 PM
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I'm sure you could set up a macro.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:30 PM
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But macros are so bourgie.


Posted by: Annelid Gustator | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:31 PM
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I didn't know you'd moved to Dalston, dsquared.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:31 PM
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and it was! but strangely rewarding! Now I await someone from the undergrounf yet booming hyphenated-insult scene to tell me I'm doing it all wrong.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:31 PM
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"cocktail-recipe-book-have-you-tasted-my-unusual-bitters- its-more-like-haute-cuisine-really-actually-weve-brought-a-lot-to-this-neighbourhood-SWPL-cockmerchants"

Why do you hate nosflow, dsquared?


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:32 PM
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198; Am I guessing correctly that you mostly imitate Wily Coyote?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:32 PM
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I too have no idea what Mad Men is. But it becomes clear that at least one person here (Sifu) is accustomed to parties so brief and moderate that drinking cocktails throughout would be no problem.

My own objection to cocktails is that they're almost all too sweet (Gin & It is OK, if that counts). I don't like sweet drinks that don't involve noble rot.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:36 PM
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Mad Men actually doesn't feature cocktails very prominently. Mostly just drinking straight or rocks bourbon in one's office.

To 201, the party is going to happen -- January 7, near downtown LA. We still need to pick a time and figure some other stuff out. You're welcome to stay at my place, if you'd like; I have space but not a great guest-bed situation other than an air mattress.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:41 PM
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Mad Men is a show about gorgeous furniture. Also there are people that move around among the furniture.

177: It was my impression there was a minimum drinking age that was not even gesturally enforced, but I don't really know.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:42 PM
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203.2, 204: I this a continuation of the 1990s (I would have even said late '80s) cocktail revival or some new one? Per discussion last time we had cocktail chat here and these interesting reads (Cocktail Renaissance: The Re-emergence and Re-invention of the Cocktail Way of Life" and "The Cocktail Nation" from American Demographics).


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:42 PM
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207: Curiously plausible.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:42 PM
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220: I s/b is.

Also from the first link, In the early part of this century, H.L. Mencken wrote that the cocktail qualifies as "the greatest of all contributions of the American way of life to the salvation of humanity."


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:45 PM
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Chris; I think the secret our friends in the cocktail fancy have discovered (and sadly they have spread beyond their haunts in Dalston and Hoxton to my own beloved NW1) is that if every drink takes ten effing minutes to make,you can hang around drinking them all night and not get drunk, though obviously thirst will become a problem.

Slow bar service really is one of my betes noires.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:46 PM
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217.1: well, I'm pretty old.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:48 PM
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223.1: you can always slake your thirst with an ice-cold glass of water if you're worried about dehydrating.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:52 PM
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I didn't know you'd moved to Dalston, dsquared.

I quite like it out there! The London Fields area of Hackney also seems a bit of a hub these days. But it's still associated with "Shoreditch hair".

Anyway, people should stop knocking delicious cocktails. They taste great, and who the hell cares if they take a little while to make. That's why you're supposed to have these people known as friends around, who you may converse with.

And on preview, I see that dsquared is mostly annoyed with slow bar service in London. In that case, I'm utterly agreed, but I do not feel it's unique to cocktail making. I've waited far too damn long at understaffed bars post-work for just a simple pint pull.


Posted by: Po-Mo Polymath | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:52 PM
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Speaking of apartments, but otherwise OT:

My landlord called an urgent meeting for tonight with my roommates, but won't tell us what it's about. I'm afraid we are being evicted, or at least threatened with eviction. Should we get a lawyer?

The situation is that the apartment is great--we love it and keep it in really nice shape--but there were problems with the radiators in the newly-added part of the house. The landlord's family members have been coming over to help out with getting the heat working, which has apparently been a nightmare with workers being very hard to find this time of year. And when one thing gets fixed, often another gets broken. Or we make a minor request (like a heating bulb in the shower) and they do a major thing like rerouting the heat through that part of the house. Everyone's been totally solicitous and friendly and helpful.

They were finally getting it all settled yesterday, but I came home to two of the relatives screaming at me, saying we should just get out if we're so goddamn demanding, and that it's not worth it for them to do all this for nasty people like us. Apparently our kitchen window was open 2 inches for ventilation and now they feel we're trying to steal from them. I said I didn't open the window, and that I've been very content, but my roommates were the ones affected by the heat situation and I thought it was reasonable. I thought we left it fine, but now there's the urgent meeting with the landlord.

Am I about to be thrown out of my home? Should I look into lawyers?


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:53 PM
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Ho ho, you cannot be so easily thrown out of an apartment in NYC as that, AWB.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:55 PM
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I feel awkward as fuck at a party without booze in my hand.

You people do understand that it is possible to drink something non-alcoholic from time to time, right?


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:56 PM
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More on-topic: I noticed when I was in Europe this summer that everyone I met watched all kinds of American TV, and even our particularly shitty TV, but had never heard of Mad Men, which is probably one of the most talked-about and innovative shows of the past few years. No appeal? Or it hasn't been distributed?


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:56 PM
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226: Anyway, people should stop knocking delicious cocktails.

People aren't, just dsquared.

Also, Po-Mo!


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:57 PM
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Yeah, perhaps the lawyers can give you some phrases to bandy about, but it is *really hard* to evict someone, and retaliation (like they seem to be engaging in) makes it that much harder.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:58 PM
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228: I didn't think so. But the urgent-meeting stuff really has us spooked. We've asked several times what the meeting is about, and he won't respond. One of my roommates is particularly up-in-your-face about things like this, and though I think she's right, she doesn't bother to frame things in the typical nice-American way of, "If it is at all possible, at your earliest convenience, and not too much trouble..." and people who are used to that kind of treatment really make her blood boil. I'm worried about how that conversation will go, and if it will end with "fine, fuck you, we're out of here."


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 12:59 PM
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almost certainly not worth bothering with a lawyer. sounds to me like the guy just wants to let out some frustration at the amount of expensive problems he's had to deal with. Buy him a nice bottle of wine for Christmas (NOT a nice mixed drink) and youll be fine.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:00 PM
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232: If he starts to make threats, you could mention your good friend that works at the AG's office.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:00 PM
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Heh. Truly, dropping my name will strike fear into the hearts of miscreants everywhere, so long as they're suing the state to get their real estate broker's license reinstated.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:04 PM
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(NOT a nice mixed drink)

No eggnog for the landlord.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:05 PM
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I didn't think so. But the urgent-meeting stuff really has us spooked.

Look at it this way: there's a vast difference from the owner saying "I'm evicting you" and you actually being forced to move. He can say whatever he wants; he can't actually enforce it.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:06 PM
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231: Well, yes, true. But he should still lay off (even if he won't). They're pretty wonderful in the right places and crowds, and he normally seems to keep a better "live and let live" sort of attitude going.


Posted by: Po-Mo Polymath | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:07 PM
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238: Fuck the landlord, how many divisions does he have?


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:10 PM
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Alternately you could try to soften him up with some poetry:

Dark and lonely on a Summer's night.
Kill my landlord.
Kill my landlord.
The watchdog barking, do he bite?
Kill my landlord. Kill my landlord.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:16 PM
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217.1: well, I'm pretty old.

Not to me you're not. Saturday, I was chatting (over a glass of quaffable Spanish red) with a mate who I regard as an older contemporary, and he mentioned that he was 73.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:17 PM
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When someone calls a meeting, and won't say what it's about, they shouldn't have much in the way of expectation that other people are going to show up.

I know you'd tell me if it was something really important. As it isn't, I'll be sticking with my prior commitment, which happened to be having cocktails with my lawyer.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:19 PM
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I am happy to live and let live with respect to normal people's cocktails - I regularly suck back a couple of pre-dinner martinis myself when out with Ma Digest of a Friday night. But the ponced-up cocktail with provenance and complexity is a more than a bit ridiculous and actively harmful when it causes delays in bar service. And you just can't, factually, drink them all night without messing around with glasses of water or waiting between drinks (an antisocial act itself on licensed pre.ises of fixed capacity) or other similar unsound bollocks.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:23 PM
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AWB, I'm inclined to think 234 is most likely. But... does this guy often hold meetings, urgent or otherwise? If it's uncharacteristic behaviour, he's probably scared about something, maybe new city charges or bye-laws, maybe some rumour about development of the neighbourhood. You can't tell. If he's given to calling meetings, he's probably going to talk about the same stuff, except it'll be trivial.

IME landlords don't make a drama out of evicting people. They try to keep it as low key as possible.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:24 PM
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(an antisocial act itself on licensed pre.ises of fixed capacity)

Truth be told we've lagged on tavern licensure for our apartment.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:26 PM
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So, what kind of drinks are you serving at the meeting, AWB?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:26 PM
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Actually 244 is interesting, because around here the kinds of places that serve time-consuming cocktails tend to (at least sort of) specialize in them, so it's not like you're causing the shot-and-a-beer crowd a great and trembling anguish, as apparently happens in London.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:29 PM
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Dsquared's favorite.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:30 PM
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Glasses of water are useful no matter what form of alcohol one is drinking. They help to separate the independent, and often contradictory, desires to quench thirst and to consume alcohol.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:31 PM
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But the ponced-up cocktail with provenance and complexity is a more than a bit ridiculous and actively harmful when it causes delays in bar service.

Does it? Bars, in my limited experience, either mix simple drinks quickly (sometimes well, often badly) or are the kind of place where you go specifically to get a handcrafted Lychee Swizzle, in which case no one's expecting speed. If you were waiting for your beer while someone set orange peels on fire, I could see that being annoying, but I wouldn't have thought it was a problem.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:32 PM
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or waiting between drinks (an antisocial act itself on licensed pre.ises of fixed capacity) or other similar unsound bollocks.

The Russian male early mortality rate explained in one simple blog comment.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:35 PM
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Sounds to me like Dsquared should chill out and have a Sazerac, and then liveblog it from his phone.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:36 PM
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248 gets it right. I have never seen a single, let's say, room, in which there were both people ordering cocktails that take twenty seconds to make, and people ordering cocktails that take five minutes to make.

I also find it extremely tiresome when I go to the deli counter to get a pound of ham and a pound of salami, and the butcher's busy with a customer telling him exactly where to shoot the grouse and how it should be carved.

Fortunately the trolling has not taken over the thread entirely, because the structure is really rudimentary.

Publius: Cocktails are a good option.
Daemon: The idea that pretentious cocktails are a good option is one which should have been nipped in the bud. Cocktails are a good option, nobody's denying that, but you cunts with your pretentious cocktails make me sick.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:36 PM
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252: Pretentious cocktails save lives!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:40 PM
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As z regular drinker in a small number of bars in the City, Mayfair and Camden, I can indeed cinfirm that there has been quite a rash recently of otherwise decent boozers acquiring the services of supercilious young knobbers who want to put half a dozen ingreedients in anything (presumably this is by way of a margin enhancement strategy on the part of proprietors impressed with young Tarquil's way of tripling the value of a bottle of Stoli by sticking a sprig of lavender in it). The comparison between these characters and an actual chef was actually made to me at one of my locals, seemingly by way of a response to my polite enquiry as to whether it had been strictly necessary for him to swim all the way to Spain to get the fucking lemons.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:41 PM
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Places that serve complicated labour intensive drinks just need table service. Even at the bar they need to operate like ordering food. You place your order, go out for a smoke, come back, chat, it eventually shows up, you drink it, chat some more, and rinse, wash, repeat.

If the d-squareds of the world wish to drink themselves silly chugging one beer after another, there are plenty of places that will oblige them. Some of these places are even uncrowded, and thus without that annoying rush hour barside experience.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:41 PM
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256: Huh, I definitely hadn't run into this in Mayfair yet, though that could also be due to the differing crowd I drink with there rather than out east.

Actually... Any recommendations for decent cocktails in Mayfair (outside the excessively-overpriced Connaught)? Camden is a bit outside any of my London haunts, and I refuse to spend any more time in the City than I absolutely have to, but it would be nice to know a couple more places on the west end.


Posted by: Po-Mo Polymath | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:47 PM
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Anyhow, most cocktails aren't particularly labor intensive. Bitters+simple syrup+bourbon+ice+mixing+pouring+orange peel takes under 1 minute, as does vermouth+gin+ice+stirring+pouring.

And cocktails that are labor intensive are sometimes awesome, sometimes not, and there's your problem and your solution right there.

I will bet $10 that Dsquared himself orders a fancy cocktail within the week, but doesn't admit it to us.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:48 PM
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Mad Men is a show about gorgeous furniture. Also there are people that move around among the furniture.

This is exactly right. Also the point of some of the people is to flesh out beautiful dresses.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:48 PM
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I went here for dinner the other night. They make their own tonic and feature fancy-pants cocktails. I had a something or other (featuring the aforementioned tonic) that was absolutely delicious. Then I found five dollars in my pizza.


Posted by: ari | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:48 PM
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Places that serve complicated labour intensive drinks just need table service. Even at the bar they need to operate like ordering food. You place your order, go out for a smoke, come back, chat, it eventually shows up, you drink it, chat some more, and rinse, wash, repeat.

Well this is more or less what Daniel is saying so I don't know why you're all getting your knickers in a twist about it. Meanwhile, as you point out, people who just want a beer or a glass of wine can get it and return to their tables without losing track of the conversation. People who drink beer aren't all chugging them you know. Two or three pints in a night is perfectly normal, but the point of the night is chatting with your mates, not standing at the bar reading menus.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:51 PM
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no, no compromise, silly cocktails must actually be banned, by primary legislation if necessary. Or if that proves incompatible with human rights law, I suppose I will settle for believing them to be pretentious and overpriced,and the myriad of their drinkers who had previously believed their hobby to have even a shred of my approval will just have to do without it. That's my final word.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:51 PM
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261.last: that's unbelievably disgusting. Do you know how filthy money is?


Posted by: Annelid Gustator | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:54 PM
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Actually, I quite like silly cocktails.

But I like a shot and a beer too. (After wine, the worst drunks of my life have been caused by incautious ingestion of boilermakers).


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:55 PM
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silly cocktails must actually be banned

Well, this is self evident in the case of things called "Slow comfortable screw against the wall" etc., but I think I can personally be a bit pluralist towards people whose only offense is that they have a sweet tooth.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 1:57 PM
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I went here for dinner the other night.

I live like 5 minutes from there. I'M HURT, ARI.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:01 PM
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Chris, if you had seen, as I have seen, a grown man sticking a bunch of basil leaves in a blender and looking around as if he expected to be congratulated for it, your heart would harden.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:01 PM
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263: You drive a hard bargain. How about we allow for two or three annoyed comments about the length of wait for bar service per night, an additional jibe about the cut of our trousers, and in return you throw in three side-long glances at our glasses with some curiosity and just that hint of longing?


Posted by: Po-Mo Polymath | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:02 PM
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I'm so blindingly enraged by this entire conversation that I'm going to go home and infuse some sour cherries with absinthe.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:04 PM
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268: He was making pesto?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:05 PM
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I move for a ban on all cocktails that do not contain real cock and genuine tail. Authenticity demands no less.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:07 PM
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I like delicious fruity cocktails. Recently I found ChocoVine, which I know intellectually to be disgusting, but my heart says "Come here, you delicious chocolate drink."


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:08 PM
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How about you agree to drink normal cocktails and I agree to "infuse" the winners of the Evening Standard mixology contest in a delicate mixture of 20 parts water to 1 part electric toaster?


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:08 PM
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a grown man sticking a bunch of basil leaves in a blender

Muddle or face scorn.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:09 PM
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LB, it's a sad measure of how little I stop by anymore that I just now realized that you and I now have the same job title. Sweet!


Posted by: NCProsecutor | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:11 PM
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Meanwhile, as you point out, people who just want a beer or a glass of wine can get it and return to their tables without losing track of the conversation.

Not in a place where a high enough proportion of the stuff being ordered is complicated. There anyone wanting a beer or wine will just need to place their orders like anyone else.

I'm waiting for d-squared to go off on those who think nice cheese or nice wine or nice clothes or pretty towns or furniture or coastlines or books or whatever other thing he's decided is the anti-SWPL cause of the day. Then we can all have another thread debating just how wrong D2 is.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:12 PM
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273 -- I was going to chide Dsquared for his transparently fake alco-populism (is there anything less persuasive than a banker pretending to the simple values of the working class stiff?) but I guess I'd be willing to ban all cocktails if it could make ChocoVine not exist.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:12 PM
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dsquared is wrong about cocktails, but 274 made me chuckle out loud.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:12 PM
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272: For years we owned a bottle labeled Five Penis Liquor (made in China, purchased by my wife in West Africa). It apparently was the export version of this sort of thing.


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:13 PM
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could make ChocoVine not exist.

I've been told that it's good when added to coffee.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:14 PM
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So George Washington got a six pack? I guess I don't need to read Standpipe's other blog after all.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:16 PM
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277,278 I have nothing against good wine, as long as it isn't accompanied bt the same sort of cork sniffing pretence that characterises the "cocktail renaissance" crowd. Some things, like Burgundy, Tallegio and good gin, don't gain from being fucked around with by a twentysomething haircut. (Also: pouring from a bottle into a glass or over ice cubes is not difficult to get right and does not make one the equivalent of a chef)


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:23 PM
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I'm going to go home and make an enormous bowl of a classic raw egg-based cocktail. Just for dsquared.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:28 PM
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but I guess I'd be willing to ban all cocktails if it could make ChocoVine not exist.

You must be thinking it's some fancy expensive wine. Surprisingly affordable! I've never had the Rasberry flavor, though.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:30 PM
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fucked around with by a twentysomething haircut

I think we have discovered the real enemy: twentysomething "haircuts" who are blatantly pretentious in a new-school way, not subtly pretentious in an old-school way. Actually, I can get on board with that prejudice, as well.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:32 PM
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Even I draw the line when the bartender's cutting his hair into my drink.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:33 PM
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88: God help me, I've just fallen in love with D2. Again.


Posted by: tedra | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:33 PM
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I am being 100% honest when I say that just the thought of ChocoVine is giving me super-unpleasant stomach rumblings and making me feel slightly queasy.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:34 PM
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And for the record, Mr. B. and I are hosting two cocktail parties this holiday season. Both are scheduled to end by 7 pm.


Posted by: tedra | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:35 PM
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290: In honor of your new Internet persona, shouldn't it be Mr. T?


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:37 PM
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288: .... though I assume he will indulgently overlook my occasional enjoyment of silly cocktails, since I am, after all, a girl.

Okay, now I have to put pants on and go buy some stout to make a birthday cake for my husband.


Posted by: tedra | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:38 PM
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I used to think that cocktails would allow me to get sufficient vitamins and minerals while drinking, but now I just dip a multi-vitamin in my whisky.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:39 PM
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291: No, his actual surname begins with a B. It was a happy coincidence that my inability to come up with a decent pseudonym for him fooled the world.


Posted by: tedra | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:40 PM
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288: He's a no good so and so, but she'll never let him go
Though she knows it will never work, she loves the jerk.
She loves the jerk.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:40 PM
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Hey, Tedra, you linked a new parenting blog of yours a little while back, and I lost the link and can't find it in the archives. Link it again, if you would?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:40 PM
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Okay, now I have to put pants on

Possibly the saddest sentence in the English language.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:41 PM
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go buy some stout to make a birthday cake for my husband.

A stout gingerbread cake?


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:42 PM
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I hope we can all agree that good parenting requires the infusion of some kind of alcohol by the parents.


Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:43 PM
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KOBE WANTS HERBSAINT


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:45 PM
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296: Parenting book blog is at talktoyourkid.wordpress.com. It hasn't had a new post in a while, though, b/c I've actually been talking to my kid instead of blogging.

298: Chocolate and stout. Two of his greatest loves, both sadly off diet for him these days. Hence a special bday treat.

Okay, now I really am going.


Posted by: tedra | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:46 PM
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297: So true.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:48 PM
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274 is pretty great. No one does erudite cultural curmudgeon better.

Do the pour-over caffs that seem to be popping up all over central London similarly annoy you? It's pretty much the same issue, where a drink that used to be a simple pour from a big bucket becomes a drawn out process typically administered by hirsute twentysomethings.


Posted by: Po-Mo Polymath | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:48 PM
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299: Toilet training is making me want to have the kind of drinking episodes that lead to memory loss, though I doubt it would actually do me any good. Plus, no point risking puking myself when I've already hit my bodily fluids bingo for the day.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:49 PM
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Good lad ,welcome to the team. In actual fact, the reason why the "new pretence" is worse than the "old pretence"is that it's much more based on a kind of Emperor's New Clothes.

Consider "craft" brwers. Such individuals have a basic problem, which is that small batch production makes quality control difficult. In fact, the only way you can get a consistent product at small scale is to make it very strong and hoppy, so it consistently tastes of nothing but alcohol and hops. Now you have the much simpler task of convincing the consumer that what "quality" means in beer is "very strong and very hoppy". I think we can all see what's wrong with that.

Similarly in cocktails, the problem is that there's very little real art there - the nicest cocktails are the standard ones, and these can be made competently with a minimum of training and practice. So if you're going to differentiate your brand, you have to invent all sorts of reasons for the punyters to believe that they want a drink with basil in it, or that the new cucumber flavoured gin that Diageo has just brought out is better than Plymouth (don't underestimate the importance of simple bribery in the development of drinks fashions) or what have you. And they need to create a lot of pointless mystique about what ought to be an utterly straightforward activity in order to justify paying a price premium for having your booze poured out of bottles by one guy rather than another.

St. Emilion and Lagavulin don't need to build a customer base - they've already got a lot of people who want to buy them (possibly because of a similar exercise 100 years ago). Modern pretension involves a lot more market-creating activity, which is what I don't like about it.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:52 PM
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294: Bo-ring. What if we refer to him as D1?


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:52 PM
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304: "bodily fluids bingo" -- awesome!

Perhaps not so awesome from your perspective.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:52 PM
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It will get better, Thorn!

My Monday morning started with a scene that could have been from Carrie. Except in my daughter's bed. As she gleefully rubbed blood into her sheets while sitting on the bed, laughing.


Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:58 PM
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Do I understand right that "Chocovine" is just chocolate flavoured booze, like Bailey's? If so I find it hard to work up much moral outrage against it - can't see myself ordering it but some people have a sweet tooth and I bet it's nicer than anything Torquin could come up with after ten minutes' frenzied muddling with Kahlua and cacao pods.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 2:59 PM
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309: Actually, a quick google reveals that it's red wine with chocolate in it. Which, even from the point of view of someone with a sweet tooth, sounds incredibly gross.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 3:00 PM
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304: This too shall pass -- once it's over, you'll forget how annoying it was.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 3:01 PM
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From this thread I've also learned that "Tarquin" is the stereotypical young yuppie. Like most Americans the only time I've heard that name is in reference to Tarquin Fimtimwhimbimlimbim F'tang F'tang Ole Biscuit Barrel.

The pretentious cocktail renaissance here is mostly among, let's say, the Mtthw Ylsias type of person. As such, its participants don't really expect your average bartender to know how to make anything at their rarefied level -- they go to specialty places or they experiment at home. The expected response of the average bartender would be "Sorry, we don't make those here."

I guess it's different when you've got some extremely rich bankers who just want something simple, and then a different group of extremely rich bankers show up and want something complex. The barman might actually be unhappy if they took their custom elsewhere.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 3:06 PM
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Even in Bedford Falls, Clarence's order of a silly drink would have raised eyebrows. In Potterville, though, Nick the bartender knew just what to say.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 3:14 PM
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At which point extremely rich banker etiquette requires that they rumble*.

*Sadly, not in the gangfight sense. They just kind of make low muttering noises at each other.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 3:14 PM
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This too shall pass -- once it's over, you'll forget how annoying it was.

But the butt-wiping continues for so much longer.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 3:21 PM
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Just went to a coffee shop to meet a friend who was in town. I am not a coffee drinker, so I was persuaded to try a Mexican hot chocolate. It took a long time to make and slowed down the line of people who just wanted their espresso fix. This makes me a terrible person, right?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 3:22 PM
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311 is a lie. You never forget.


Posted by: tedra | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 3:23 PM
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Do you have pants on yet, young lady?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 3:25 PM
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it's red wine with chocolate in it. Which, even from the point of view of someone with a sweet tooth, sounds incredibly gross.

It doesn't actually taste anything like red wine. More like a super chocolatey liquor*.

*How do you spell the word that is pronounced like liquor, but with the accent on the second syllable? I can't even get google to help me out.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 3:52 PM
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Liqueur


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 3:53 PM
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I think we have discovered the real enemy: twentysomething "haircuts" who are blatantly pretentious in a new-school way, not subtly pretentious in an old-school way.

TELL IT BROTHER. Words cannot describe the hatred felt by the right-thinking man for the arriviste who is blatantly trying too hard.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 4:00 PM
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Possibly the saddest sentence in the English language.

No, that would be: "Oh, shit, I was just out and I forgot to put pants on."

I'm amused to see that dsquared's Quixotic project of defending Molson and Budweiser from the savage depradations of the craft brewer is semi-current again. Though he actually seems serious about it this time, which makes me feel a little bit like I felt when I found out what's really on Gallagher's mind when he smashes a watermelon. The world is so unkind to our innocent dreams.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 4:03 PM
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Anyway here's the part of this thread that enraged me:

You can't drink cocktails all night - it would be like drinking whisky or brandy all night.

I drink whisky all night ALL THE TIME! In fact I'm drinking some right now, and I don't ever plan to stop. Case closed.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 4:04 PM
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323: Hell, I sometimes drink whiskey all day. All week, even.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 4:05 PM
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320: Thanks!


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 4:07 PM
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In fact, the only way you can get a consistent product at small scale is to make it very strong and hoppy, so it consistently tastes of nothing but alcohol and hops.

I agree with 322, but I'm dismayed that he holds everyone else in such low regard that he would troll with this kind of low-grade crap.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 4:07 PM
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312 From this thread I've also learned that "Tarquin" is the stereotypical young yuppie.

Command+F is telling me its first appearance in this thread is in your comment. But 256 mentions 'Tarquil', whatever that is.

I thought the name Tarquin died out in 500 BC or so.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 4:07 PM
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I thought the name Tarquin died out in 500 BC or so.

Is *that* when the Death Star got blown up?


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 4:10 PM
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Tarquin is still around. Tarquil is a confusion of Tarquin and the equally upperclass but more Celtic Torquil.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 4:11 PM
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320: I might! But I'm still waiting to hear whether she has pants on yet.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 4:13 PM
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329: I thought it was a combo of Tarquin and Tanaquil.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 4:19 PM
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329 and 331 make more sense than what I was thinking, which was a combination of Tarquin and NyQuil.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 4:21 PM
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I am pleased to discovery that there are ludicrous, pretentious upper class names that haven't made it to my kid's preschool yet. I wish there was some way to bet real money on what the fancypants names of three years from now will be.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 4:22 PM
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I SEE A TARQUIL AND A TORQUIN IN THIS THREAD, BOTH BY dsquareD. COMBINED, THIS IS TARQUIN, I ASSUMED


Posted by: OPINIONATED GRANDMA | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 4:22 PM
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Stop torquin' us around, grandma!


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 4:24 PM
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328: "A long time ago in a galaxy far away..."

long is just relative... Space Laydeez.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 4:31 PM
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88: Boston is somewhat unusual in that old-time Yankees are notorious for wearing brown shoes in town. People (fairly upper crust ones) have even been known to wear brown shoes with blue suits. The same gentlemen probably know not to do this in London.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 4:35 PM
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I think we can all unite against the bartender described in the opening paragraphs here.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:17 PM
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Er, middle paragraphs, rather.

Also against the waiter.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:17 PM
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338/39: Oh, pfft. That's made up. Or not, hey, I am willing to believe most things about my fellow humans, but I have never in my life been asked shaken or stirred; have seen manhattans shaken at any number of absurdly twee bars and even more serious old skool bars; and can't imagine a waiter/bartender simply refusing to make a standard drink because of the season. Also, mix is ultimately from μίγνυμι, which is Greek.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:31 PM
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red wine with chocolate in it

I was actually convinced to try a bit of it, or something like it, at the local shop's weekly wine-tasting; the staff and proprietor kept on and on with the "No really, I know, but really, it's not bad at all!" It's actually not, though I couldn't see having an entire glass of it.

ludicrous, pretentious upper class names that haven't made it to my kid's preschool yet

I gather we're talking about "Tarquin", but I've just had the opportunity to be reminded of the names of three young ladies (sisters) of my acquaintance: Madison, Logan, and Savannah. What make ye of these?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:32 PM
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I probably should have google-proofed those. Anybody around of a mind to do it for me? Sorry.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:34 PM
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Why would you need to google-proof three very common names?


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:37 PM
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Those are very common little girls' names. (Logan is bi, really.)


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:38 PM
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What make ye of these?

Oh, honey, those are so over they have long since been strippified. Get ready for G/eorgia, H/arriet, L/ucile, V/iolet and U/rsula. It's the boys names that are truly bizarro, though: M/agnus, B/althazzar, and V/ander.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:42 PM
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And can we all pretend that I'm not actually making fun of my kid's three and four year old classmates?


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:43 PM
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We can but try.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:44 PM
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Madison, Logan, and Savannah. What make ye of these?

Porn star names.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:45 PM
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343: Because they're sisters, sharing a surname, I guess. Probably no biggie.

Those are very common little girls' names

Yeah, I think it's just the fact that they're kids of the same family that tends to throw me. Why not toss an Anne or an Emily in there? I can't shake the feeling whenever I spend time with them that the parents were going for something specific, in any case, and wondered if anyone else thought the names resonate in a particular way. They speak horsey set to me, actually. I'm mostly curious, since I definitely don't have an "Oh, yes, common names there" response.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:45 PM
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You're making fun of their parents, no?

(Speaking as someone blessed with a not entirely common first name.)


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:46 PM
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Savannah was strippified first, no? Or at least she was a pretty famous porn star in the 80s (or maybe early 90s?). A 2d cousin's kid is named Savannah and both of my brothers said, PORN STAR. And then a different 2d cousin named his kid Amberlynn, and my brothers said, PORN STAR.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:54 PM
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338: I've never found a fancy bartender who quizzed me, and I've definitely been to the kinds of places the author describes, and some that she's hinting at without naming them. I would feel weird if I were with someone who ordered an amaretto sour there, but I would take my own personal Oklahoma relatives there anyway. It's not too good for them; it's that you take guests where they serve what they want.

That said, I have Ohio friends coming this week and have described one such bar as a possibility with the instruction, "This is the kind of place where you don't order; the bartender will just make you something." They said that sounded nice.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:57 PM
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I would not take


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:58 PM
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(Logan is bi, really.)

That's a reading a bit much into his interactions with Weevil, but yeah, seems plausible.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:58 PM
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Man, the name Madison tweaks me irrationally. A friend and I have a running joke about people naming their kids after dead presidents and trying to predict which one's next. I'm holding out for a bunch of tykes named Taft.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 5:58 PM
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I believe that Amber Lynn was the full nom de porn of an 80s porn star. There was definitely a Ginger Lynn. And Savannah, of course -- who dated Pauly Shore (mineshaft tie in!), before killing herself. I'm pretty sure there was one known as simply "Madison" as well.

I can't recall a "Logan" but I'm sure you wouldn't have to look too far to find a porn actress with that name.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:01 PM
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Madison has been one of the top 5 most popular girl's names for the past decade.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:04 PM
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355: My money's on Fillmore.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:06 PM
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I like (actual porn star) Faye Reagan. The name has that nice porny mix of Southern/presidential.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:06 PM
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Fillmore

It's the Comstock Lode of porn/presidential!


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:08 PM
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There are lots and lots of little boys named Carter around here.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:10 PM
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I think I've mentioned before the woman I know whose archconservative dad named her "Reagan Lee."

I was thinking that "Roosevelt" would have been an awesome name if I'd had a boy, but it's a little ridiculous. "H/arrison" is another name of a kid at the preschool of amazing names.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:10 PM
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360: Much pornier than Taft.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:10 PM
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Nothing porny about naming your daughter Bush.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:10 PM
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The family friends who named their girl babies these things did so in the mid-90s, so I guess they weren't clued in.

Man, the name Madison tweaks me irrationally.

Yeah, I don't know why I'm irrationally tweaked, but there it is. Eye-roll. Logan is okay.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:11 PM
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I was thinking that "Roosevelt" would have been an awesome name if I'd had a boy, but it's a little ridiculous.

Doesn't strike me as ridiculous; strikes me as a black name.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:11 PM
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362: I know a Roosevelt! He goes by Roo. It's cute.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:13 PM
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And, to 366, he's also black. And gay.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:13 PM
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Years ago I tutored a kid named Sirpatrick. He was really meek and sweet, but a little too young to really get how unusual his name was. I saw it play out a few times that a new tutor thought he was being mouthy when he was asked his name, and he didn't have the wherewithal to clarify, or didn't follow why exactly they were reacting weirdly.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:14 PM
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Logan is okay.

Parsimon's inner X-Men fan, revealed.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:15 PM
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If your kid could be as bad-ass as Rosie Greer, it would be pretty cool.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:15 PM
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Roosevelt is now totally a black name, which is a great name that it would have been fun to reclaim for white people, except that my posh background ex actually was friends with one of the actual presidentially-descended Roosevelts, which would have meant that we might have seemed weirdly to be asserting a non-existent family claim and . . . . ultimately, I had a girl so the issue didn't come up.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:18 PM
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Naw, that would be sweet. Reclaim the name! Have a girl Roosevelt!


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:19 PM
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Girls' names:

Madison
Buchanan
McKinley
Kennedy
Reagan
Obama

Boys' names:
Washington
Jefferson
Jackson
Tyler
Monroe
Harrison
Pierce
Lincoln
Grant
Hayes
Arthur
Garfield
Cleveland
Roosevelt
Taft
Harding
Wilson
Eisenhower
Clinton
Carter
Ford

Depends on the situtation:
Taylor
Truman
Hoover
Polk
Van Buren
Adams
Coolidge
Fillmore
Johnson
Bush
Nixon


Posted by: Cryptic neds | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:20 PM
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Hoover makes a fortuitous nom de porn.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:22 PM
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370: An X-Men fan through the mid-80s! And he was one of my favorite characters, sure.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:23 PM
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I know tons of Taylors and Tylers.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:24 PM
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Rosie Veldt?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:25 PM
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There's a controversial Navajo intellectual named Taft Blackhorse. I've discussed his ideas a few times. I don't know where the name came from in his case, but he's actually Taft Blackhorse Jr. so it apparently goes back several decades.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:25 PM
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Hoover makes a fortuitous nom de porn.

Harding too.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:26 PM
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374: Oh, I just can't hear "Obama" as a girl's name. Or any first name.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:27 PM
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Someone should have three children and name them Cleveland, Harrison, and Cleveland.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:27 PM
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I'm currently enjoying a nice glass of ChocoVine.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:32 PM
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I know tons of Taylors and Tylers.

Me too. Also lots of Grants and Jacksons. Looking down 374, I know a surprising number of people with presidential first names.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:32 PM
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Because they're sisters, sharing a surname, I guess

The Graeae have gotten pretty tame in their old age.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:34 PM
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374: "Jackson" and variations thereof are already girls' names. "Monroe" should totally be a girls' name. And I believe I've mentioned before my sister's erstwhile schoolmates N/xon and Jul/e Vang. (Grateful Hmong parents.)


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 6:47 PM
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354 made me happy, though it took me a second. I wonder if there is Logan/Weevil slash. There's gotta be.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:03 PM
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385: They finally became bored and turned to pubescence, which wreaks an equal amount of havoc.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:04 PM
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those are so over they have long since been strippified

Friends of a friend named their child "S_v_nn_h G_yle." I couldn't help it; the first thing out of my mouth when I learned this, was "Wow. Do they want the child to grow up to be a stripper?" (Not that there's anything wrong with that.)

Ford.

A great name for an astronaut.


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:05 PM
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A great name for an astronaut.

Or a very shallow person.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:08 PM
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Update! My landlord just came over with his psycho mother (the one who screamed at me about the window and that we should move out) to repeat, to all of us, while refusing to take a seat, that the windows should not be open, and that we do not live in a luxury building, and also that we are welcome to break our lease if we are unhappy. We replied that we are happy, and the window is closed now, thank God, and... is there something we are failing to understand here? In that this was such a crisis that we had to have an emergency meeting and not an email?


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:11 PM
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391: So what was his reply?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:16 PM
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391: My dad, a lawyer, now retired, once had to fly to Belgium, go to a one hour meeting, and then fly back to the East coast of the US.

"I have to threaten somone," he explained.

"You can't do it over the phone?" I asked.

"Its just not the same."


Posted by: Madison Ford | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:16 PM
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(Yep, just read some Logan/Weevil so that exists. Now the quest begins for Logan/Weevil/Giant Squid dubcon MPreg AU PWP.)


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:20 PM
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(Our relations with our landlord here can be somewhat similar: a phone conversation in which he asks whether we're thinking of moving out, say. Um, not particularly -- why? Would you like us to move out? Or are you reassuring yourself that we are not intending to? It's frustrating as hell. There's also an extended family, Italian, involved. Not that there's anything wrong with Italian families, of course, but man, they do do the clan thing, and dealing with your landlord's in-laws isn't necessarily helpful.)


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:21 PM
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394: Wow. That detention time they spent together was really meaningful, I guess.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:23 PM
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So I had grown to love this thread already, somewhat inexplicably, but whatevs, and then: BOOM. 393.

I completely agree.

Also, Madison(s): call me.


Posted by: donaquixote | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:25 PM
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394, 396: One doesn't have to stretch "you like playing with yourself, or you want to make things interesting?" all that far, really.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:25 PM
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||

I had no idea esr was such a nutjob, or a nutjob in these particular ways.

|>


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:46 PM
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Not as much of a nutjob as Kobe.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:49 PM
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Further to 400: He's been going on like that for ages and ages; I remember him talking up "The Bell Curve" on Usenet. (And claiming he couldn't be racist because he'd slept with a black woman!)


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:52 PM
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399: I don't know who this guy is, but I clicked through to his blog, and he's got a Heinlein quote at the top which is so wrong it seized control of my brain for several minutes while I categorized all the ways it was wrong.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:56 PM
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402: My reaction also. What's the mystery here? Did this individual at one time do something non-nutjobish?


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 7:57 PM
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Did this individual at one time do something non-nutjobish?

Wrote some computer code and decided it made him an expert on everything, including women's sexuality, IIRC.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:02 PM
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402, 403: Yes, a number of things.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:04 PM
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You know, I can't think of any form of expertise besides programming expertise that is less likely to correlate with expertise on women's sexuality.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:04 PM
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Well, I had thought of him as the superlative nerdy crank, but I thought it limited itself to cod-libertarianism, obsessing about guns and programming languages, and writing the occasional cunnilingus HOWTO (for reals).


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:05 PM
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Oh, maybe that wasn't precisely it. Anyway, here is Eric S. Raymond's Sex Tips for Geeks.

AMAZINGLY, I just now figured out that the "catb" domain must mean "Cathedral and the Bazaar".


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:07 PM
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Oh Jesus, from that link in 408:

Some men have this down well enough that they can make eye contact with a woman they've never met before, smile, say "You're very pretty." and make her smile back. Try this sometime. The self-confidence required to pull it off is attractive to women -- if you sound sure of yourself when you do it, the response you get may surprise you.

Cathy: Try this on a stranger in an elevator, if you must, to minimize the fear level.

Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:11 PM
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Speaking of which, did anyone see that movie about the people stuck in an elevator with the Devil? Was there more to it than that? Why would anyone make a movie like that? It would seem to be the exact inverse of No Exit, and predictably stupid as a result.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:15 PM
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And written by M. Night Shyamalan, to boot.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:18 PM
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406: Model rocketry? Musical theater? Monster Manuals?


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:23 PM
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For a population with the average IQ of hackers poetry composition should be a relatively easy skill to acquire

I love this.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:23 PM
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I saw it. It was not the worst movie he's written.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:24 PM
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414 well, I can believe that. Read the Wikipedia synopsis. Still sounds fairly stupid to me.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:28 PM
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It was forgettably bad.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:31 PM
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Try this on a stranger in an elevator, if you must, to minimize the fear level.

There's just nothing like being stuck in a sealed 5x5 metal box with a stranger gettin' his sarge on to put a lady at ease.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:32 PM
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410 I was totally curious about how you could make a whole movie out of the premise, but emphatically not curious enough to see it. Oh maybe I'll see if it's fully outlined on wikipedia. They have spoiler-rich plot summaries. (I know because I sometimes read the summaries of horror films. I absolutely can't watch them but I have some kind of unpleasant curiosity. It's hard to explain.)


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:33 PM
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Sweet christmas I am awfully full of eggnog. Suck on that, dsquared!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:36 PM
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That being my eggnog tap, as I will hopefully be more comfortable if some is drained off.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:37 PM
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That movie sounds godawful.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:37 PM
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420 I would say "I'd be happy to relieve you of some of that" except, um, with the setup and all it sounds like...yeah.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:39 PM
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I know because I sometimes read the summaries of horror films. I absolutely can't watch them but I have some kind of unpleasant curiosity.

My brother. When Paranormal Activity came out my students thought I should see it, but I stayed up very late reading reviews and probably freaked myself out more than if I'd seen it.

In other news, after Tron: Legacy, I'm most excited about the film of The Monk coming out. !!! Vincent Cassel as the Monk! I mean, there goes my make-a-million-dollars-writing-a-screenplay idea, but yay!


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:40 PM
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Almost the only thing I remember about it was seeing a preview for it in the theatre, and hearing the entire audience groan when Shamalan's name flashed on screen.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:41 PM
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Does Tron: Legacy actually look good? Or at least fun and not childhood-memory-wrecking?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:44 PM
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402, 403: Yes, a number of things.

Looking at the Wikipedia entry I have to give him credit for this position:

In his open source advocacy, Raymond refused to speculate on whether the "bazaar" development model could be applied to works such as books and music, not wanting to "weaken the winning argument for open-sourcing software by tying it to a potential loser".

Few people, having become famous for a simple-to-understand idea, resist the temptation to apply to idea to everything in the world.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:46 PM
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425: I am way too excited, and have been for years. I am going on Saturday. In related news, there is already a porn parody planned. Yay!


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:50 PM
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425: no. 427: yay!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:52 PM
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Um, make that two Tron porn parodies. (This is the link with the notable porn stars in it.)


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:52 PM
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I saw it. It's not the best Tron movie. But Daft Punk!


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:55 PM
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I suppose it depends on what your childhood memories are. My childhood memories (from a long ago laser disc player/laser disc brithday rental) are that the original movie was awful. I'm not really sure how that could be ruined.


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 8:56 PM
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When I saw the trailer I thought, who is this movie for? Folks my age full of nostalgia and the desire to see contemporary CGI effortlessly recreate very early computer animation, or kids of today who know the 80s movie from ... what, were there endless TBS or Disney channel showings when I wasn't looking?


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:00 PM
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Well I thought it was for nostalgic Disney boardmembers, but it turns out to be for AWB. Yay AWB!


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:04 PM
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My childhood memories of it are too hazy to be worth anything, really.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:04 PM
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I was like 3 and a half when I saw it in the theater, but have seen it many times since then. I liked the minimalism of it; it's quiet sometimes, and it looks that the new movie might also have some quiet scenes. It's all I ask. We're having an original Tron gathering Thursday followed by a new Tron viewing on Saturday, for the purpose of constructing the "prosthetic American childhood" as I said recently one immigrant roommate refers to it.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:12 PM
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I saw the original Tron for the first time this year.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:12 PM
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The original Tron was awesome for several reasons: the production company they hired were basically this insane low-budget animation shop with a totally insane process for photocopying every frame and then backlighting it. That meant that they couldn't move the camera. Second, they (through some miracle of not-thinking-it-through) got Wendy Carlos to do the soundtrack. Third, they somehow managed to land the most lunatic marquee actor of his generation. The third movie doesn't really have any of those things (Daft Punk is one of my favorite bands, but the soundtrack is basically not Daft Punk). I'm hopeful, but not optimistic.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:15 PM
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Oh I forgot, the first movie also had the 100% swankest bachelor pad of all time, which was slung out over an arcade (!) with wraparound picture windows providing a view of the gaming floor (!!) and had a built-in sectional couch and carpeted conversation nook (!!!).


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:16 PM
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You might be wondering why I called the second Tron movie the third Tron movie. Well, this all makes a lot of sense inside my head, where [ CONFUSING, PRIMARY COLORED MONTAGE INVOLVING AIRWOLF, THE COMMODORE VIC-20, SHIGERU MIYAMOTO AND, FOR SOME REASON, JESSICA FLETCHER FROM MURDER, SHE WROTE ]


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:18 PM
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435: It's paced much like the first, with quiet, enjoy-the-scenery moments.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:19 PM
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The parody is called "Pr0n: Legacy", right? And that's a zero.

Third, they somehow managed to land the most lunatic marquee actor of his generation.

Who?


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:20 PM
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I've never seen the original Tron, and I have no intention of seeing the new one. I'm sure you're all shocked.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:21 PM
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438: This one is a mixture of cityscapes and bachelor pads.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:21 PM
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441: that joke is 15 years old at least. This is not your fault.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:22 PM
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But Daft Punk!

Can't say that I recommend the sountrack.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:26 PM
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teo, go rent the old Tron. It's important.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:26 PM
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Hmm, I may need to see the original as an adult. Nine year-old me found it difficult to follow and borring. Sifu isn't really convincing me otherwise, but I like quiet pretty moments, so I may try again.

Also, 439 made me laugh like crazy.


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:29 PM
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[ CONFUSING, PRIMARY COLORED MONTAGE INVOLVING AIRWOLF, THE COMMODORE VIC-20, SHIGERU MIYAMOTO AND, FOR SOME REASON, JESSICA FLETCHER FROM MURDER, SHE WROTE ]

I want to go to there.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:33 PM
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449

I just watched the trailer and (a) I'll watch it, though probably on DVD and (b) weird -- Kevin Flynn became Obediah Stane.

As a reference point I just watched the original move a couple of years ago and thought it was well done but I was surprised how cynical the movie was towards video games and gamers. I felt a low level hostility towards the imagined kids who get excited by the sorts of thrills that the movie was delivering.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:34 PM
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446: Rent? Do places still do that?


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:36 PM
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448: welcome.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:37 PM
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I think it's an archaic form of the word "Netflix".


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:37 PM
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408 is the link that keeps on giving:

.In our ancestral environment, the man's key question was "is she able to survive the stress of pregnancy and birth to give me many children?", but the woman's key question is "is he both able and willing to provide for me and the children?". (Usually. A woman already mated might have been asking instead "Should I cheat with him, trying to con provider/hubby into raising his kids, in order to capture maximum genetic variation for my offspring?"

Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:41 PM
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The first movie (WHICH I LOVE) is one of the things that helped me understand that I am missing some stuff in my brain that deals with plot. I had to see it several times before I knew what was going on and it is not a complicated movie.

Oh, this is so exciting. And to be experiencing it with other giant raging geekosauruses is really ideal.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:42 PM
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449: so, just to put you in the right frame of mind, the movie came out before War Games. It was not only the first movie that had computer animation in it, it was the first movie that acknowledged the concept of computer gaming as, like, a thing. That it was a little dismissive was irrelevant. It had fucking computer animation in the movie. Highly limited computer animation rendered with the world's sickest PDP-11, yes, but computer animation. That said, watching it as an adult what I like the best is the weird, late-70s-California Super-Marionation-esque film processing; only in a world before widespread computer video effects could somebody possibly think that was a good idea. And they filmed it in Cinemascope! So gloriously confused.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:43 PM
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451: But you promised us Jessica Fletcher! Among other things.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:45 PM
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456: oh, okay. That wasn't actually what it's like inside my head. Good DVD, though.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:47 PM
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Dear Mineshaft: if I were a reasonable person I would be going to sleep right now, but I'm feeling a strange temptation to open up a bottle of wine. Oh wait, this isn't really a question after all.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:49 PM
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449: so, just to put you in the right frame of mind, the movie came out before War Games. It was not only the first movie that had computer animation in it, it was the first movie that acknowledged the concept of computer gaming as, like, a thing.

Fair enough. It would be more accurate to say that it was clearly a movie in which different people involved in making it had different opinions/level of familiarity with computers and that it was apparent that at least some of the key decision makers behind the film were pretty cynical about them.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:49 PM
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459: well, but it's better than that: the key creative movers behind the film had nothing but blue-sky dreams about computers. They really didn't use them. The whole "computer animation" side was actually imposed by Disney; the central plot was dreamed up by a bunch of weirdo not-so-successful animators with a crazily stupid technique based on (literally!) backlit photocopies who somehow convinced Disney to bet the farm on their technology, and also somehow thought that they were cutting-edge.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:51 PM
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So wonderful.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:52 PM
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Re 433, the Disney board members are definitely NOT nostalgic for the time period of Tron (actually, I don't think there's anyone from that time period still on the board who was there way back then). But maybe they're hoping that the remake, like the original, will signal the end of a shitty era.

I saw the first Tron when I was a kid, and thought it sucked. Then I saw it as a grownup, and it still sucked, and not n a so bad it's good way. What can I say, I hate computers.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:57 PM
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Wendy. Fucking. Carlos. Genius.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 9:59 PM
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This is pretty great.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 10:02 PM
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464: the whole soundtrack (minus the Journey songs) is pretty fantastic.

Oh! They also got whatsisface to do the industrial design. Syd Mead.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 10:14 PM
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This is pretty great.

Hmmm, so it is.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 10:16 PM
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This 8-minute clip probably tells teo (or others) all they want to know about whether they should see the whole movie.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 10:17 PM
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Thread really bring to mind the important question of our age: is trolling a sin?


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 10:18 PM
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When the current batch of hipsters who wear neon spandex and giant urkle glasses starts plopping out spawn, they'll name them ironic names like Fred and Virginia and Bob.


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 10:27 PM
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467: Huh. Well, it's certainly totally unlike any other movie I've ever seen in several ways. Doesn't particularly make me want to watch the whole thing, though.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 10:31 PM
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I eat chocolate while drinking red wine all the time. I have no sweet tooth at all. Chocovin does not appeal, mostly because it sounds like a profit center.


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 12-14-10 10:40 PM
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"This is the kind of place where you don't order; the bartender will just make you something."

Such a bartender clearly need to have his nads "muddled" with the toe of my boot.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 12:10 AM
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Madison, Logan, and Savannah. What make ye of these?

They were all conceived in medium-sized American cities, or their airports?

Future siblings will no doubt be called O'Hare, Midway, Kennedy, Orlando and Homestead. And the twins, Dallas and Fortworth.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 2:35 AM
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Having been out at a gig in Dalston last night, can the fucking gentrification get a move on or something? (This is notoriously a question it doesn't do to ask.)

Also, Tarquil - treat this as a broadcast message to Tarquils in general - would it kill you to keep your show within a nodding acquaintance of the times on the set list? If I'm coming out on a work night I can do without standing about pointlessly waiting for people to show up.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 2:45 AM
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Google says Tyler is a girls' name: "Tyler girls name", 5.7 million; tyler Boys name 2 million.

I could get behind calling a boy Wat Tyler Smith, and then if they wanted to use their middle name fair play, but I don't see how it gets to be a girls' name at all.

I was at school with a Tar/quin in the 60s, so it's not all that new a name. I completely made no effort to stay in touch with him, but much later he produced a movie called "Home Alone" and one called "Ferris Bueller's Day Off", so I expect he can afford whatever cocktails he wants these days and keeps a bartender on retainer.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 2:51 AM
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The Tyler is the outer door guard at a Masonic Lodge - I also don't see how it could possibly be a girl's name.

I am now worried about Camden gentrifying a bit too far - ie, going from being like Shoreditch in the 00s (as it was when I moved in) to being like Notting Hill now. A new pub opened up by Mornington Crescent and I thought to myself, while drinking a quite swingeingly expensive Bavarian lager "at least these prices will keep the student mob at bay". I went in on Friday night and it was chock full of students, seemingly happily paying four quid a glass and braying at each other in the corresponding accents.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:14 AM
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476: that boat, I think, has sailed. Camden Lock is rapidly turning into the Goth equivalent of the Notting Hill Carnival.

Oh, hey, you know where to go for a drink in Camden that's free of students? Cocktail bars!


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:20 AM
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I didn't notice any objectionable braying, but perhaps it was simply loud enough to drown them out. Students, certainly.

Mind you, as well as being tardy, the group of Tarquils in charge organised a "Christmas meat raffle" after the show. Having been to plenty of pubs that do this for real, I wanted to eat my own brain.

So yes, combination of self loathing, hangover, and fleeting sense of having done something absurdly hip. I think that's what we came for?


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:28 AM
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I am now worried about Camden gentrifying a bit too far - ie, going from being like Shoreditch in the 00s (as it was when I moved in) to being like Notting Hill now.

Perhaps you should open a new boozer dedicated to attracting the most disreputable customers in North London? Serve a choice of Long Life, Budweiser, or quid a can Latvian lager while entertaining them with your famously cheerful attitude and accessible music policy (see Thursday music links, passim).


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:31 AM
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Places that serve complicated labour intensive drinks just need table service.

English pubs and bars (other than, say, hotel bars, or restaurants disguised as bars) don't do table service. And even if they did, they never have enough tables to make more than a tiny dent in the amount of people who would be queuing at the bar.

As for Tarquin, it's famously the name of the spoilt child in the Viz comic "The Modern Parents". The question is, did Tarquin as the archetypal upper middle class twat name come before the comic or was Viz's choice of name inspired by an already existing phenomenon?


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:43 AM
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Perhaps you should open a new boozer dedicated to attracting the most disreputable customers in North London

Aren't there enough Wetherspoons pubs already?


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:45 AM
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Oh, hey, you know where to go for a drink in Camden that's free of students? Cocktail bars!

Sadly not true! Inverness Street has "gone cocktail", with disastrous results. The really sad thing is that Bar Vinyl, which used to be very strictly professionals-only (as in, you really would not get served if the staff suspected that you weren't a disc jockey) has changed ownership and is now catering to the bridge and tunnel crowd. I never used to drink there (for obvious reasons) and still don't, but it's a bit sad to see some of the town's industrial heritage slipping away.

#479: I did pitch a Tuesday night residency "Unlistenable Music For Pretentious People" to the landlord of the Crown & Goose, but he was quite drunk at the time and has since sold the boozer. Luckily though, the Constitution still remains bearable, if quite studiedly unfriendly.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:46 AM
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the group of Tarquils in charge organised a "Christmas meat raffle" after the show

I think this may be becoming a trend - I have seen it on flyers and posters, choking down the vomit for exactly the same reasons. In the name of Christmas charity, I am assuming that it's being carried out not so much by Tarquils, but by only-gay-in-the-village types from up North who are ironising and decontextualising the culture of their youth, now that they've gone to university and started promoting club nights in Camden. But the charity is certainly wearing a bit thin.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:49 AM
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I did pitch a Tuesday night residency "Unlistenable Music For Pretentious People" to the landlord of the Crown & Goose

You could form a multinational company with nosflow.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:50 AM
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I've never encountered many students in Quinns. Or cocktails. Just a staggering array of beers.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:57 AM
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Yeah, that's more Kentish Town though innit. To be honest I don't mind the students all that much - it's just that a student pub will reliably be too crowded on Friday night.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 4:11 AM
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It's much closer to Camden Town tube than Kentish Town tube, but, yeah, it's technically Kentish Town.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 4:14 AM
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I should go to Quinn's much more often than I do - somehow Kentish Town Road is a bit of a psychological barrier for me (also it used to be a little bit stabby a few years ago didn't it?). Maybe I need to piss on a few lamposts round that way to give myself more of a sense of being in the right territory.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 4:18 AM
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That's the eternal quest, isn't it? To find a pub that's i) not totally shit, and yet ii) not completely rammed to the gills. These days I end up in semi-dubious Irish bars out Hanwell way as that's where mates drink, but even the quiet middle-class boozer nearest my flat in Ealing has been crammed to bursting recently.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 4:23 AM
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*Everywhere* in North London has gone through a phase of being a little bit stabby. Except Highgate High Street, and the IRA blew that up...


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 4:29 AM
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It may be different in London, but up here pubs are closing like they were going out of fashion, which, apparently, they are. Also, the breweries are rack renting the landlords and the landlords are voting with their feet. There's a perfectly good pub across the road from Bramall Lane football ground which has closed, ffs. It ought to be a licence to print money.

So there's less floor space in licenced premises anyway, unless you want the poncy cocktail scene or Wetherspoons. Makes it hard to find one that's not rammed to the gills.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 4:32 AM
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I should go to Quinn's much more often than I do - somehow Kentish Town Road is a bit of a psychological barrier for me (also it used to be a little bit stabby a few years ago didn't it?).

No more stabby than, say, the 29 bus. 3 murders on that bus (including one at my stop) during my previous 1.5 year residence in NW5.

That's the eternal quest, isn't it? To find a pub that's i) not totally shit, and yet ii) not completely rammed to the gills.

Absolutely. It's not too hard early in the week, but on a Friday or Saturday it can be a nightmare.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 4:41 AM
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I feel more cultured just reading Unfogged this time of night. (Last paper of the semester.)


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 4:56 AM
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I feel more cultured just reading Unfogged this time of night. (Last paper of the semester.)


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 4:56 AM
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I think it's beautiful that ~500 comments later, the conversation is still about drinking.

What can I say, I hate computers.

It's over between us, Halford. Take your leather-daddy cap and go.


Posted by: Robust McManlyPants | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 6:19 AM
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So, I'd never heard of this Wetherspoon's chain (that's the one you guys are on about, yeah?). The objection is what, exactly? The drinks themselves? The type of clientele they attract? The décor?

They kinda sound like TGiFriday's or Applebee's, maybe with fewer potato skins or something. (Which is to say, not ideal, but it'll do in a pinch for a beer or three with friends.)


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 6:28 AM
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496. Characterless, apart from a general resemblance to an aircraft hangar. Not actively horrible, more dispiriting. The sort of food that give Britain a bad name.

||
BTW, couldn't they just fire this guy for absenteeism?
|>


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 6:33 AM
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475: I could get behind calling a boy Wat Tyler Smith, and then if they wanted to use their middle name fair play, but I don't see how it gets to be a girls' name at all.

Actually, it's a pretty common progression in Anglo-spheric naming to go surname=>boys' name=>girls' name. Viz. "Courtney", which had apparently never been a girls' name until Pamela Moore named her protagonist that in Chocolates for Breakfast.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 6:38 AM
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The second one, mainly. For a short while, during the great real ale drought, Wetherspoons was a actually a force for good. Their pubs always have a couple of real ales in addition to the usual Carling/Fosters/Kronenbourg rubbish, and they were really cheap, so they helped counter the "nice beer is elitist" line of argument. But, partly because of their cheapness, they do tend to attract a certain crowd, and they also tend to adopt arsey management policies in response (a mate of mine has been an assistant manager at several Westherspoons and I've heard some real horror stories). Plus they're almost all built as enormous soul destroying barns so they can fit as many people as possible in. The food's disgusting as well.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 6:40 AM
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When the current batch of hipsters who wear neon spandex and giant urkle glasses starts plopping out spawn, they'll name them ironic names like Fred and Virginia and Bob.

Alternatively, when Savannah Brandy grows up and becomes a stripper, she'll take the nom de guerre "Gertrude" or "Maud"


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 6:41 AM
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499 to 496, obvs.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 6:42 AM
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Recent names of children in my reformed-hipster milieu: Olive, Oliver, Evelyn, Ivy -- I don't know why there are no "Veras", "Victors", or "Vincents" yet, but perhaps they are on the way.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 6:44 AM
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498: Actually, it's a pretty common progression in Anglo-spheric naming to go surname=>boys' name=>girls' name.

Yes, I think Leslie is an example.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 6:52 AM
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Long-ago reply to 392: When we started to question the necessity of strange standup meetings in which we get lectured repeatedly for something that is already taken care of, and about which we've already been lectured after it was taken care of, this seemed to result in the repetition of the point that windows are not to be opened, please, I cannot stress this enough. Yes, actually, you can. You can stress it even too much! To the point that you look like a crazy person maybe!

It sort of reminded me of how I used to get about plagiarism. Whenever you get up on a high horse to lecture someone about their moral failure in a case where morality really has nothing to do with their decision-making process, you end up sounding like a crazy person.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 7:09 AM
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Olive, Oliver, Evelyn, Ivy

Evelyn girl or boy?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 7:11 AM
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Old-fashioned names have been fashionable for some time, haven't they? The country's been filling up with Jacks for years, and the trend has got more powerful. Anecdata: one premier-league British blogger/journalist has a charming little son called Alfie (who I last saw filching a £20 note from his dad's pocket with the elan of a Parisian apache of the Belle Epoque).

Also, with the burlesque scene's midcentury obsession, I'm pretty sure I could find you a stripper using "Gertrude" or "Maud" as a pseud within a quarter-mile radius of my office.

Wetherspoon was a force for good when they were mostly buying actual pubs and putting proper beer into them. Unfortunately they've moved on to converting other buildings, like an enormous 1930s cinema on the Holloway Road*. They've also stopped advertising the beer in favour of that nightmarish sign with "Global Beers - Family Dining - Lavazza Coffee" on it.

*Islington says: fuck the movies, let's get shitfaced


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 7:11 AM
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It's also true that during the 90s Wetherspoons was sustaining literally dozens of small breweries who really appreciated having a regular, recurring order for significant amounts of beer in order to do things like pay rent and power bills on time, but I think real ale has now got prevalent enough that this isn't as big an issue as it was. The guy who would know would be J/ohn B/and, having been a financial analyst specialising in the drinks trade.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 7:16 AM
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504. Is there a thread in the archives where you explain how forbidding windows to be opened isn't in itself a sign of a crazy person? If not, what am I missing here? I means windows, they come with hinges, or in extreme cases sashes...


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 7:16 AM
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508: It is strange, and certainly not something that is stated in our lease agreement or anything like that. When we suggested the possibility that this was a bit much, he asked us, "When you came to see the apartment, did I make it seem like this was a luxury building? Is this some kind of fancy-person place to live where you can pour heat out the door if you want to? It's not! It's not a luxury place, and that's what you want, so break your lease if you want to! We just want you to be happy and you're so miserable here!"

The whole thing got stranger and stranger.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 7:24 AM
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3XTR3M3 W1NDOW SASH3Z!


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 7:24 AM
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509. Umm... Yes, crazy. Still, if it's a good apartment/palace/whatever, and he doesn't let himself in all the time, who cares? If he keeps it up, ask him to repair the finials.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 7:30 AM
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Also, are you not responsible for your own heating bills?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 7:31 AM
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Paying for your own heat would be unusual in an NY apartment -- normally, it's part of the rent.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 7:38 AM
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512: No. In NYC, landlords have to provide heat. In my last apartment, the landlords never came in except for a few emergencies, but because of all the work being done, they're here all the time, and obviously increasingly cranky about it. I just don't know how we went from Saturday, when they were begging us to forgive them for the difficulties in getting all this fixed (and there was even a discussion about the open window) to me coming home on Monday to them screaming about how maybe someone tried to break in, because what kind of psychopath cracks a kitchen window two inches? I think it's obvious that this is about just getting tired of fixing stuff and wanting us to be intimidated by them. Luckily all the stuff is fixed now so we can stop having crazy people in our apartment.

And I think the parents have been trying to make the son, our landlord, feel like he's a failure for seeming too friendly with us. One gets the sense that he is trying to be hip and cool and the parents are like, no, tenants are the enemy! Show them who's boss!


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 7:40 AM
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Paying for your own heat would be unusual in an NY apartment -- normally, it's part of the rent.

Wow, no wonder rents are high.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 7:48 AM
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Too damn high, to coin a phrase.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 7:51 AM
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The conversation about bars and gentrification is of a genre that happens constantly in New York, usually involving people who want to be the only person of their demographic in a place and doubt the motivations of others who show up there.

I had endless iterations of this conversation with a guy I know in my neighborhood who kept referring to a cafe I like as "The Worst Place on Earth" and talking about how much better the bar where you could buy heroin in the bathroom was. I'm pretty sure he used the word "authentic" ffs. "Too many white people," he would say about the cafe, and I'd say "but, O, you're Canadian. Of Scandinavian heritage. You're practically translucent. You don't even speak Spanish." And he'd come back about how a sandwich costs ten dollars and reiterate "it's the worst place on earth!" in that hipster, I'm-kidding-if-you-press-me-on-it way until I gave up and said "you're right, it's basically like they opened an outlet of Auschwitz in Darfur" and then he sort of shut up about it.

I don't know, it's the whole SWPL ethos. It bugs me. Or like Sasha Frere-Jones calling Stephin Merrit a cracker. You're the wrong kind of our suspect set. By pointing out your wrongness, I'm the right kind.

(Um, this isn't aimed at dsquared who I don't really know, and who may not indulge in this tactic. It just reminded me of a thing that bugs me and I went off on it.)


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 7:52 AM
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Is it a technology difference? Most apartment buildings have radiators with steam heat, and there wouldn't be any way for the landlord to determine who was using how much heat -- to make it a separate charge, they'd just have to pro-rate the building's fuel by apartment, which would come out the same as lumping it into the rent.

I think a building with, say, electric baseboard heaters could leave you to pay your own electric bill -- the landlord's obligation is for there to be functioning heat in the apartment, not necessarily to include it in the rent. But I don't think I've seen an NY apartment without central heating. They probably exist, but they're the exception.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 7:54 AM
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518 to 517.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 7:56 AM
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518. Probably. Most rented flats in Britain will have central heating, but it'll be gas or electric with a boiler in each flat for heating and water (Same as owner occupied ones, in fact.)


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 7:58 AM
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517: If there's anything respectable about that kind of thinking (which, the specific guy you're talking about, probably there isn't), it's in not wanting to live in a monoculture, and being afraid that people like you will drive everyone else out. I like not being the dominant demographic in our mutual neighborhood. OTOH, I also like the new market that opened a couple of years ago a block from my apartment that's clearly catering, at least in part, to my ilk. (As well as to some unidentified group of people that buys chamomile flowers and whole cloves in bulk. That doesn't seem likely to be a Dominican thing, but I don't know who it is.)

If I thought the neighborhood was changing to the point that it was going to be 95% English speaking only, I'd be bummed, and might easily be saying stupid stuff about authenticity.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:01 AM
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you're right, it's basically like they opened an outlet of Auschwitz in Darfur

I love you, Smearcase.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:04 AM
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That doesn't seem likely to be a Dominican thing

Chamomile and cloves feature importantly in autos da fe. They make the smoke smell better.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:05 AM
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It's weird. Nice little store, decent produce, normal staples, certain amount of catering to the SWPL trade. Some bulk beans, but not a broad selection of bulk stuff except for the giant bulk bins of chamomile flowers and cloves. I suppose I could ask.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:08 AM
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And chickens that still have their heads.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:08 AM
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No, I'm not that kind of a snob, I'm a socially more annoying but economically less pernicious kind. Camden Town has always been a media industry cluster (the MTV Europe studios and Hat Trick productions are located there, plus a ton of PR firms and publishers, plus the remains of what used to be a music scene). So it's always been pretty dang middle class, and my bit of it almost exclusively so. What appears to be happening though is that it's turning into more and more of a dormitory suburb with a tourist trap attached. If there were loads of bankers living here I would be cool with that too, but it actually appears to be the children of the idle super-rich.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:09 AM
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518: No, we have the same heaters up in Boston and we pay out the ass for heat individually.

517: Don't you know how hard it is for white people to have authentic experiences? I used to go to this bar where I was robbed and murdered every night, but ever since they got plumbing in it's gone to complete shit. I blame hipsters.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:10 AM
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Old-fashioned names have been fashionable for some time, haven't they? Anecdata: one premier-league British blogger/journalist has a charming little son called Alfie (who I last saw filching a £20 note from his dad's pocket with the elan of a Parisian apache of the Belle Epoque).

One notable british comedian has children named Matilda and Horace [both under 5].


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:10 AM
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I am guilty of complaining about "too many white people," despite being, as a friend of mine says, "like Jane Austen white." I grew up in a pretty integrated place, and then moved to Cleveland where if there aren't some black people around, it's definitely true that you are hanging out with the kind of white people who say n----r. Where I teach, a white man in the class who isn't an immigrant is about 1/100. So one tends to notice that the demographic of the place one is in doesn't resemble the rest of one's life at all. 100% white people isn't itself the problem; it's just a situation that only rarely doesn't end, IME, with someone saying something shitty and racist and expecting me to agree. (True of my experiences in Ireland, too! Oh, you're American? We just love hearing about your Civil War and those brave rebels who fought to keep the proper social order.)


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:14 AM
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I too really liked the Auschwitz/Darfur line. I'd be tempted to add or maybe you mean Disneyland just to twist the knife a little.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:14 AM
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The national motto of Ireland IME seems to be "It's not that I have anything against Negros, but..."


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:15 AM
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Huh. That's the neighborhood my husband's old boss just had to move out of a year or so ago: King Henry's Road, or am I geographically confused? And yeah, the twenty-somethings on the street when we were there with him last summer did look as if they weren't worrying about holding down jobs. Nice restaurants, though: we ate at a very pleasant little Cypriot place.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:17 AM
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532 to 526.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:17 AM
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The second, as our friend emir will attest, is "That isn't ladylike!"


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:17 AM
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One notable british comedian has children named Matilda and Horace

Germany also has the old-timey name revival going on; Matilda (/Mathilde) has been a popular name there for several years now. I also know a couple who named their kid Agnes, which I think sounds awful in German.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:19 AM
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100% white people isn't itself the problem; it's just a situation that only rarely doesn't end, IME, with someone saying something shitty and racist and expecting me to agree.

PDBS would be a refreshing change for you.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:19 AM
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named their kid Agnes, which I think sounds awful in German.

Not so mellifluous in English, either. But in French!


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:20 AM
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536: Penn Del Bead Society?


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:22 AM
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537: A French friend was telling me some story about an old girlfriend in Paris who was named Elizabeth, but insisted on being called Agnès. I asked why and he was baffled. "Elizabeth? It does not sound very well, no? It is not a nice name like Agnès."


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:27 AM
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a situation that only rarely doesn't end, IME, with someone saying something shitty and racist and expecting me to agree

No one ever talks this way around me. I'm not sure whether it's because I'm with people who are more buttoned up in general, or if there's some vibe where they don't think I'll agree. Or maybe it's going on, and I'm so determined not to acknowledge this sort of thing at all that I'm not even hearing it.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:29 AM
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The national motto of Ireland IME seems to be "It's not that I have anything against Negros, but..."

A close friend (white but with a black kid) was centrally involved in setting up the first organisation in Ireland to lobby for anti-racist legislation less than 30 years ago. So yes, pretty much.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:29 AM
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Well and in fairness this cafe that I like is probably sort of a parody of SWPL. You know, they serve Dogfish Head and red velvet cupcakes and they have trivia night. But it also has some advantages over other places in the neighborhood that I don't think I find advantageous just because I'm a White Person Who Likes Stuff White People Like. It doesn't have giant tv screens visible from every vantage in the place. You can sit around there for a long time and they don't care. And the food, though not conspicuously cheap, is good. My neighborhood: not a foodie playground!

And yes, of course it's worth making sure you don't spend most of your time around people exactly like you. I don't mean to question that idea for the sake of snark. But it was weird being the target of someone's Sasha Frere Jones takedown and I didn't think it really won anything for anyone except my friend who got to feel like The Guy Who Gets It.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:29 AM
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100% white people isn't itself the problem; it's just a situation that only rarely doesn't end, IME, with someone saying something shitty and racist and expecting me to agree. True of my experiences in Ireland, too!

Wait, the Irish are white now?


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:32 AM
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And yes, of course it's worth making sure you don't spend most of your time around people exactly like you.

And of course your cafe is providing that service for those people not exactly like you in the neighborhood. That's kind of what I like about the food store I was talking about -- it's catering both to the SWPL and to the immigrant Latino population (and the chamomile people, whoever they are).


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:32 AM
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'Cause I got friends. And that's a fact. Like Agnes, Agatha, Jermaine, and Jack.


Posted by: Biz Markie | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:32 AM
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And yes, of course it's worth making sure you don't spend most of your time around people exactly like you.

Speaking of which, isn't this blog a little too gentrified? Can we get some more authentic people to come hang out with us?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:38 AM
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On the internet, nobody knows you're inauthentic.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:39 AM
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548

Wait, the Irish are white now?

For several decades, now.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:39 AM
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549

Speaking of which, isn't this blog a little too gentrified? Can we get some more authentic people to come hang out with us?

Should ttam and I start talking about stabbing again?


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:41 AM
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550

you're right, it's basically like they opened an outlet of Auschwitz in Darfur

At once so very right and so very wrong.

I blame hipsters.

And society! Don't forget society.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:41 AM
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551

548: I'll go and get a kebab.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:42 AM
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552

547: Never have to worry about counterfeits at 2am
'cause that's all there is

On the internet like at 2 am -- inauthenticity is assumed.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:44 AM
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553

Also, this.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:44 AM
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554

Names like Roosevelt and Jamaal are really authentic.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:45 AM
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555

539: What? But Elizabeth sounds awesome in French! But maybe I'm biased.


Posted by: LizSpigot | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:47 AM
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556

King Henry's Road, or am I geographically confused?

Geographically you're very close indeed; sociodemographically miles away. North London's funny like that.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:48 AM
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557

Wait, the Irish are white now?

When I lived in Chicago someone told me that the first mayor Daley referred to anyone who wasn't Irish as a Polack. Does that answer your question?


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:49 AM
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554: I've noticed brief looks of surprise on several occasions when a person discovers that someone named Russell Barnes living in Durham is a straight-up honkoloid.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:50 AM
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559

The kid in the preschool o'names with French parents is "Gui/lhelm" which is pretty impressively old fashioned. I don't think "Hildegard" is back yet, but if they ever got my proposed baby names futures market up and running, I would be bullish on it.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:53 AM
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560

I am amused by 557. Two states of being: Irishness and Polackity. Then, one day, a black swan...


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:53 AM
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561

Isn't Russell a girl's name by now?


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:54 AM
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562

558: Jammies made his football coach cry when he showed up on the first day of practice in 8th grade.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:55 AM
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563

559: Good bet. My friend with a German husband named her kid "Gustav," which, at least a few years ago, was considered enormously old fashioned by native German speakers.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:57 AM
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564

562 is funny.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:58 AM
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565

562. Didn't his mother tell him to leave the CS canisters in the locker room?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:59 AM
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566

563: Gustav is such a great name. So is Gerhardt.


Posted by: LizSpigot | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:01 AM
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567

"This is the kind of place where you don't order; the bartender will just make you something."

Such a bartender clearly need to have his nads "muddled" with the toe of my boot.

Surprisingly, dsquared is right. Stopped clock and all that, I suppose.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:02 AM
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568

The problem with 567 is that every time I've been to a bar with that kind of model (and they usually ask if there are ingredients or a style of drink you're particularly fond of) I have been served something fucking delicious.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:11 AM
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569

568: Hear, hear.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:13 AM
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570

In fact, Kraab, come to Boston or New York and we'll prove it to you.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:15 AM
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571

Yeah, seriously. I generally like much more downscale bars, but the let-me-curate-your-cocktail-tasteway-this-evening model is really fun every once in a while.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:15 AM
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572

Not to speak for oudemia, or anything.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:15 AM
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573

570: It's true!
572: No, you can be my spokesmodel on cocktails.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:21 AM
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574

Further to several comments above, it's not like you walk in and order a whiskey neat and they OVERRIDE your order and bring you a Singapore Sling. It's a place you go because the bartenders know a ton of drinks and have swell ideas. If it sounds awful, they absolutely do not strap you down and waterboard you with Shillelaghs.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:23 AM
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575

I like fancy cocktails, but I'd pay real money to see Dsquared kick someone in the 'nads with his boot. Comity!


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:24 AM
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576

Anyhow, as I know we've discussed here, the fancy cocktail trend seems to be either plateauing or in decline.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:27 AM
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577

I'd pay real money to see Dsquared kick someone in the 'nads with his boot

You don't order that specifically, he just chooses the best way to curate your violence tasteway this evening.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:28 AM
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578

re: 549

For authenticity, we can talk about chibbing.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:29 AM
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579

On the subject of authenticity, my paralegal (whom you may recall is from the Far East, out past Glasgow) has a cousin with a new video out.

Authentic fusion.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:32 AM
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580

I am reminded of the machines in Hitch-hiker's Guide To The Galaxy that would analyse your tastebuds, process your hormone levels and compute the optimal taste experience, before serving you a liquid almost, but not quite, entirely unlike tea.

I think the most undignified spectacle of the kind I have ever witnessed was in a posh bar in Glasgow, where a waiter and a bartender actually had a (polite but passive-aggressive) argument over whether it was "correct" to take water in a particular malt or not, which my colleague had to interrupt by reminding them that, discussions aside, he had actually asked for some and that this fact potentially offered a Gordian solution to the question.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:37 AM
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581

Incidentally, I think I had the first intimation of imminent old-age and/or death. I've been looking at various year-end Best of 2010 album lists, and realizing I've only heard about 10% of them. Shit, in some cases I've only heard _of_ about a third of them. This is bad.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:38 AM
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582

By that standard, not only have I been long dead, I have never actually been alive.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:42 AM
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583

I am reminded of the machines in Hitch-hiker's Guide To The Galaxy that would analyse your tastebuds, process your hormone levels and compute the optimal taste experience, before serving you a liquid almost, but not quite, entirely unlike tea.

Why?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:43 AM
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584

re: 580

Let me guess, some place like Babbity Bowser's? The Chip?


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:49 AM
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585

576:
Shut up Halford LA! You don't get to decide this!

I have the typical Upper-Midwestern/lower middle-class twitchies about paying $10 for a cocktail, but most of the craft cocktails I've had have indeed been amazing.


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:50 AM
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586

Almost, but not entirely, like tea

Especially annoying when what you really wanted was a Pan-Galactic Gargle Blaster.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:54 AM
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587

Idle curiosity from a simple fellow in Ohio -- how much do these fancy cocktail places typically charge for a drink?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:54 AM
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588

a simple fellow in Ohio

peep is John Boehner?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:55 AM
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589

588: yep!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:56 AM
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590

[weeps]


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:57 AM
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591

590: Hey! That's my thing!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:59 AM
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592

Round here, $10-15, but we're simple Midwestern sorts ourselves.
This menu, pages 3-6, is representative.


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:01 AM
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593

re: cocktails. There is/used-to-be a cocktail place in Prague that hired my wife some years back,* so we didn't used to pay for drinks there. It's possible to get very very drunk if you are drinking cocktails all evening and they are free.

* as a language teacher, funnily enough.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:01 AM
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The cocktail places I've drunk in in Oxford, it's about £5 - £8 a drink. But most of them have happy hours during which drinks are half price. So I've tended to go to them, sink a few cheap cocktails, and then head off to normal pubs.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:03 AM
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583: no one knows quite why.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Technology_in_The_Hitchhiker%27s_Guide_to_the_Galaxy#Nutrimatic_Drinks_Dispenser


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:09 AM
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587: There's a very nice cocktail bar in Cleveland called The Velvet Tango room (in Tremont?). Drinks are $15 a go, I think, but before 8 or something are $9 or $10. I can find their website, but not drinks list on line.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:12 AM
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595: what I meant was, why does it remind him of that? I mean I understand they both fit the structure [AGENT LEARNS PREFERENCES, SUPPLIES BEVERAGE] but they basically seem almost, but not quite, entirely unlike each other.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:12 AM
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592: Thanks, Jimmy! I wonder if the NY & Boston establishments charge significantly more.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:14 AM
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598: certainly not, no. I can't remember ever paying as much as $15, actually, although it's probably happened.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:16 AM
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600

Incidentally, I think I had the first intimation of imminent old-age and/or death. I've been looking at various year-end Best of 2010 album lists, and realizing I've only heard about 10% of them

I get intimations of this on a daily basis, living as I do with someone who edited one of the more prominent of those lists.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:17 AM
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Because, what you are going to get is "a mixture of booze and fruit juice". Since booze is nice and fruit juice is nice, it is actually hard work to fuck that up so badly it tastes actively unpleasant. The point of similarity being that in both cases, it's a distant second best to simply delivering what you requested and not acting like Muttley asking for a medal for having done so.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:20 AM
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If on the other hand you are claiming that when you put yourself in the hands of Master Mixologist Torquil-Tarquin von Fucknut, he creates for you a sublime experience which is indescribably better than a mere Martini could ever have been, reinventing the concept of a "drink" in the manner of Ferran Adria, then I find myself simply doing that thing where you pretend to cough and actually say "bullshit" quietly into your hand.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:23 AM
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603

Because, what you are going to get is "a mixture of booze and fruit juice"

That seems like a limiting-to-inaccurate way to describe most fancied-up cocktails at the kinds of places I'm thinking of.

Also, it's perfectly easy to fuck up booze and fruit juice, if that's your goal. Have you tried a bourbon and grape? Or a nice scotch and guava?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:24 AM
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599: Ok. So, expensive but not something I would need to worry about if I happened to stumble in to such a place -- I was imagining that the bartender would pick up on my refined sensibilities and make me a special drink,and it would be so good I would drink a few and then when the bill came I would have to offer my services as a dishwasher (for the next several years).


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:25 AM
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602: well, that's okay. You certainly don't have to believe me. There are those who pretend to cough and actually say bullshit when presented with the idea that food or wine could be that much better than average, too, and my strategy is generally to let them go on ahead with their narrow, impoverished, untroubled existences.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:28 AM
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I'm with 582. I think the last time that I would have actually even heard of the majority of the people on a Best Albums List would probably be about 1832 or so.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:30 AM
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BTW, I'm not entirely happy with the denigration of Torquils and Tarquins, given that I know one of each fairly well and they're neither of them in the least like that. Actually, the person most like that whom I know is called Daniel. (a different one.)


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:32 AM
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608

Yes, there's an awful lot of Dans among them, but Torquil and Tarquin are just intrinsically funny names.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:34 AM
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609

605: Faith may not be able to move mountains, but it can certainly make food and drink taste better.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:34 AM
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609: Yes, Felix Salmon, who knows from wine, reckons that the price is a large part of the taste.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:39 AM
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611

I think that's a reasonably uncontroversial conclusion (I mean, there's studies and shit) after a certain price point, but up to around $30 a bottle or so people do seem to judge quality pretty well in blind taste tests.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:42 AM
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612

re: 606

I really like music. I don't feel obliged to check out everything on these lists and much/most of what I like isn't especially fashionable, but usually I find, just through normal listening, reading magazines, buying CDs, etc that when the year-end reviews come round I'm familiar with a lot of it. This year, I obviously didn't. I must have let most of it pass me by.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:45 AM
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610. A large part, yes. But finding something that retails at £20 in a supermarket or £40 in a restaurant, marked down to £10 - now that tastes fucking perfect.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:47 AM
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614

This menu, pages 3-6, is representative.

Reading that mostly confirms my general preference to not drink in bars but, occasionally, by a bottle of something nice.

For example, I notice on page 7, 2 oz of Jim Beam (ri1), is $16. Last time I noticed it, a bottle cost about $35. A 500% markup seems excessive.

But, honestly, I don't drink.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:50 AM
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615

Some people get a kick out of drinking the most expensive wine. Others get a kick out getting the best bargain. Either way, it's still all about money.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:51 AM
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616

a parody of SWPL. You know, they serve Dogfish Head and red velvet cupcakes and they have trivia night.

Wait … this makes it a parody?

I'm in too deep!


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:53 AM
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617

Some people get a kick out of drinking the most expensive wine. Others get a kick out getting the best bargain.

Still others, the chocolatiest.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:58 AM
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618

Only because the mention of cake and beer reminds me: last time I was in NYC, I went to see some friends' band at the Cakeshop and asked the bartender if they served PBR. She said, "No, but this is just like PBR," handing me a can of Rolling Rock.

I'm still not sure if I was being mocked or what.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 10:58 AM
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619

617: Good point, heebie.

615: Stop being a jerk.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:01 AM
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620

"No, but this is just like PBR," handing me a can of Rolling Rock.

She meant in cultural-functional terms.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:01 AM
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621

Some people get a kick out of drinking the most expensive wine.

Mere alcohol doesn't thrill me at all.

Oh wait. Yes it does.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:03 AM
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622

I think one could make the case that only a few things are worth getting in a bar, rather than making at home. One of them is draught beer, especially cask-conditioned. Your bottle of IPA is not going to taste as good as keg or cask beer.

The other thing that's worth it is a cocktail you couldn't make at home. I don't have the expertise to make a good drink, and although I can patch together a negroni, I really do occasionally appreciate a surprising and special beverage made by a skilled person who, it goes without saying, is not an asshole.

I cannot imagine ordering wine at a bar, because fuck you this "house red" cannot be worth $15 a glass. Straight liquor like whiskey or bourbon I'd only order in a bar if I don't care that the glass markup is so high because I'm never going to buy a $100 bottle of that anyway.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:21 AM
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623

Why ever bother to leave the house? Everything is cheaper there.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:23 AM
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624

Most things describing themselves as "house red" are barely worth $15 a bottle, with markup. But the point is whether you go to bars for the drink or for somewhere convenient to meet friends.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:26 AM
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625

I'm still not sure if I was being mocked or what.

If it were Heineken, it would have certainly been mockery. Not sure, in the given case.


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:26 AM
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626

623: Not everything is available though. I leave my house from time to time to get supplies. Also, to go to work.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:27 AM
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627

Why ever bother to leave the house? Everything is cheaper there.

To be honest, I am mostly a hermit.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:28 AM
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628

625: Heh.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:31 AM
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629

623: often not the case with cocktails; spending $130 on ingredients to make a drink is cost effective if you make a lot of them, but how long is it going to take you to work through all of that Cynar, chocolate bitters and liquid smoke?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:31 AM
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630

Why ever bother to leave the house?

I ask myself this quite often. Some reasons to leave the house to drink are that there is an activity involved, like dancing or singing, that requires some drunkenness. It's also useful to drink to signify that you might be interested in sex, which, unless you're in a relationship, no one seems to allow you to do sober. Conversation with friends can be assisted by drinking, but if I'm with people I actually like, I'd prefer having something really tasty that I enjoy, rather than just getting hammered on expensive liquid for no reason.

I don't particularly see the point of drinking to get drunk in public unless there's a goal like singing or having sex. I do it, but usually more out of nervousness.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:31 AM
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631

I've had to start charging myself for drinking at home, just to cover expenses.


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:32 AM
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632

630:

or to fight.


Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:33 AM
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633

632: Is that why you go out drinking, will? Itchin' for a fight?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:34 AM
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634

It's also useful to drink to signify that you might be interested in sex, which, unless you're in a relationship, no one seems to allow you to do sober.

No one lets you have sex while you're sober, or no one lets you signify that you might be interested in sex while you're sober?


Posted by: urple | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:35 AM
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635

The latter seems to effect the former.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:38 AM
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636

I prefer to sing and have sex at home. I actually don't mind doing either in public, but other people react strangely.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:40 AM
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637

In certain circumstances.


Posted by: urple | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:40 AM
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638

637 to 635.


Posted by: urple | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:40 AM
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639

638: too late. 637 to 636.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:42 AM
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640

I prefer to sing and have sex at home

Simultaneously?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:42 AM
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641

I guess 622 also refers to how I eat. I am a pretty good cook, so if I go out, I only really want to spend money on things I can't make at home. I'm certainly not going to spend money on something I make much better at home.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:43 AM
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642

I actually don't mind doing either in public, but other people react strangely.

I too have had that reaction. Particularly to my singing.

The point about pubs is that if they're good for anything, it's for meeting people who might not want to travel as far as where you live. There's no rule that says you have to get hammered in them; I often spend an evening drinking fizzy water if I'm not in the mood for booze. But the question is whether you think the company is worth the minor outlay. If so, fine; if not, stay at home and bullshit to people on the internet, which is also fine, and in my own case permits singing.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:47 AM
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643

Simultaneously?

GOD BLESS AMERICA, LAND THAT I LOVE
STAND BESIDE HER AND GUI--

What? But, but, I'm not finished. Nobody ever complained before...


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:48 AM
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644

640: Make love all day long
Make love singing song


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:49 AM
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645

||
I just got a spam email with the subject line Big penis^^like a^^girl!, which seems a bit off the mark.
|>


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:51 AM
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646

640: If I am going to sing and have sex simultaneously, I definitely want to do it in public, preferably a bar where the bartender will select a drink for you.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:54 AM
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647

645: I also got one of those recently.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:55 AM
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648

||
Wow, this one hits lots of buttons: general Slate contrarianism (at least in the headline & setup), W. Sale/tan's obsession with sexual taboos, Ivy League academia, the Bundesverfassungsgericht, legal moralism, rational-choice theory.

I'm probably wasting brain cells taking anything W.S. writes seriously, but his argument strikes me as pretty lame. The natural-law social-conservative is simply going to reply that what's at issue isn't the shifting or blurring of existing relationships, but the creation of relationships that blur social roles, and then claim some sort of essential Mother/Father binary. They'll be wrong, but nothing in Sale/tan's column will change their minds.

... anyway. This is probably conventional wisdom, but I don't see anybody--certainly not the daughter--being done any favors by the prosecution.
|>


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:56 AM
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649

632 reminds me that I heard on the radio this morning that one of the lead guys in the Decemberists is writing a musical based on miners in Butte. If Emerson isn't involved in this project, he should be.

I also heard an ad on the radio for the holiday sale, going on right now, on fine glass bongs at a store on Main Street. Tagline for the store: Pound for pound, the dopest shop around.

I didn't hear anything about any silly cocktails.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:56 AM
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650

568-574: You're on. (Now I just need a reason my job needs to send me to NYC or Boston.)


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:58 AM
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651

Also: I'm definitely hopping on AWB's "W. Sale/tan is just really creepy" bandwagon. I'm imagining him spending hours doing "research" reading the pro-incest forum he links to.


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 11:59 AM
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652

645: Obviously you just haven't met the right girl.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 12:01 PM
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653

I also heard an ad on the radio for the holiday sale, going on right now, on fine glass bongs at a store on Main Street. Tagline for the store: Pound for pound, the dopest shop around.

There's a part of New Brunswick near the main Rutgers campus where there are three headshops, one of which just opened, within literally about a quarter of a block. An illustration of agglomeration economies, I guess.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 12:02 PM
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654

630: It's also useful to drink to signify that you might be interested in sex, which, unless you're in a relationship, no one seems to allow you to do sober.

I always thought people drink to get up the courage to ask people to have sex with them. If this was a necessary prerequisite, wouldn't there be some piece of hoary old Guy Lore to warn us dudes away from sex with sober chicks? Or is there and I've just missed it all these years?


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 12:05 PM
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I always thought people drink to get up the courage to ask people to have sex with them.

That's certainly why I drink. It generally doesn't work, though.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 12:12 PM
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Is paying for heat all that rare in NYC? My impression was that in smaller older buildings that don't use steam heat it's pretty common. I pay for mine. That, general decrepitness and long tenure keeps my rent below market.

Anyone play with the NYT interactive census ACS map? It's fun.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 12:27 PM
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That's certainly why I drink. It generally doesn't work, though.

You may not be drinking enough. Or perhaps you're not at the right concerts ...

If this was a necessary prerequisite, wouldn't there be some piece of hoary old Guy Lore to warn us dudes away from sex with sober chicks? Or is there and I've just missed it all these years?

There's the weak version & the strong version of this. The weak version is simply that alcohol reduces inhibitions, so inebriated people--of either sex--are more likely to have sex with you, just as they're more likely to proposition you, too. ("You drink that drink! Alcohol has been a social lubricant for thousands of years. What do you think, you're going to sit here tonight and reinvent the wheel?") The strong, and rather misogynist version, flows from an implicit model that sex is something that men want and women withhold, and alcohol helps turn "withholding" into "acquiescing". This is a bad mindset to have.


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 12:29 PM
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Or perhaps you're not at the right concerts

About teo...


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 12:36 PM
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Anyone play with the NYT interactive census ACS map? It's fun.

That it is. It does illustrate some of the reasons I don't really like dot-density maps, though.

You may not be drinking enough.

See, that's what I thought, so I started drinking more, but it hasn't helped.

Or perhaps you're not at the right concerts ...

This, on the other hand, is so true as to be trivial.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 12:45 PM
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I take it I need to RTFA?


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 12:45 PM
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657.2: I totally get all of that, but even the Dodgiest of Rogers has always seemed to me to look at booze and drunkenness (of the target) as a potential tool in his arsenal, not as the necessary first step in the act. Indeed it's more prestigious not to have to get her drunk if you can find some other way to go about things.

(Roger's point about alcohol as a social lubricant is perfectly correct, but not really about drunkenness. Having a drink to "be sociable" and getting soused are different things.)


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 12:46 PM
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Teo needs to be infected with toxoplasmosis. That'll make our little mouse challenge those kitties.


Posted by: Annelid Gustator | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 12:57 PM
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Or perhaps you're not at the right concerts ...

This, on the other hand, is so true as to be trivial.

Surely suffering through a Myley Cyrus show would be worth it for the potential hot mom action?


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 1:07 PM
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Surely suffering through a Myley Cyrus show would be worth it for the potential hot mom action?

I'm not sure exactly what "the right concerts" would be for my purposes, but I'm pretty sure that's not it. I'm also pretty sure that's not how her name is spelled.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 1:10 PM
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I'm also pretty sure that's not how her name is spelled.

Maybe she's just being 'Myley'.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 1:12 PM
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663, 664: An adult male alone at a Miley Cyrus concert might as well just register as a sex offender.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 1:14 PM
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648: What a ridiculous article. Gay sex and incestuous sex should not be grouped together. It's disingenuous to pretend that incest between a parent and a child doesn't matter once the child is legally an adult. There is an inherent inequality in their relationship. Just because the parent doesn't have sex with the child until the child is 18 doesn't mean that the parent can't manipulate the child before then.


Posted by: LizSpigot | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 1:15 PM
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Apparently her real name is Destiny Hope Cyrus.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 1:16 PM
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I've lived in three fairly different neighborhoods in NYC and never paid for heat. I sort of thought nobody did unless they lived in some new high rise with central heat and air.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 1:16 PM
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667: I agree with your thinking as far as parent/child incest, but it misses sibling incest (I knew a guy who had an ongoing siblings with benefits thing with his sister - not healthy in the least).

People who get their morality from warmed over bronze age mythology aren't likely to find the distinction between consensual adult homosexual conduct and nominally consensual incest compelling, anyway.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 1:25 PM
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An adult male alone at a Miley Cyrus concert might as well just register as a sex offender.

Good point. Maybe teo should go to a Liz Phair concert wearing a Grrl Power t-shirt.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 1:29 PM
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666: there's probably a table by the merch where you can.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 1:33 PM
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Maybe teo should go to a Liz Phair concert wearing a Grrl Power t-shirt.

Now this sounds more reasonable. Not that I'm going to do it, of course.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 1:33 PM
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671: there you go. Or maybe carrying some zines.


Posted by: Annelid Gustator | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 1:36 PM
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I've heard The Hold Steady puts on good concerts to hook up at.


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 1:37 PM
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If Le Tigre goes back on tour, you could go with a cut-off shirt and "SLUT" written in lipstick across your belly. And carrying some zines.


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 1:42 PM
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675: In bar light she looked alright / In daylight she looked desperate.


Posted by: The Hold Steady | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 1:43 PM
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That's why, in the morning, you put on Bloc Party.


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 1:49 PM
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||
Does anyone remember that article from a year or two back about all the famous psychiatrists who can't figure out why they still engage in neurotic behaviors? I want to share it with my alienist.
||>


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 1:50 PM
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||
Also - any advice for what to do when you've promised to edit someone's abstract submission for them, but English isn't there first language, and there's really not much of substance to it, and it's due today? As in, my totally honest response would be: "My editing it would involve completely rewriting it, which would turn it into about 6 sentences, 3 of which would be setup, and 3 of which would be handwavey promissory notes."
|>


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 2:14 PM
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I've decided that you can't account for the wrongness of incest without taking purity instincts--emotional repugnance at taboo behavior involving bodily things like sex and food--seriously. Simply talking about power relationships, fairness, and consent won't cover it. You have to give moral weight to that feeling of disgust, the same way you give moral weight to feelings of compassion for the suffering of others.

I'm not endorsing any kind of Biblical control on sex or anything. But you can't understand the acceptability of homosexuality and the unacceptability of incest if you simply look at sex as a random pleasurable activity that requires consent.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 2:18 PM
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The strong, and rather misogynist version, flows from an implicit model that sex is something that men want and women withhold, and alcohol helps turn "withholding" into "acquiescing".

I like to have a martini,
Two at the very most.
After three I'm under the table,
after four I'm under my host.

The sage also wrote that Champagne makes girls want to dance and drop their pants. Just sayin'.


Posted by: Dorothy Parker | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 2:18 PM
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"If all the girls attending [the Yale prom] were laid end to end, I shouldn't be at all surprised."

Hi, Dottie. I was just quoting Benchley on another blog. How are you?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 2:21 PM
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any advice for what to do when you've promised to edit someone's abstract submission for them, but English isn't there first language

An additional proofreader is always a good idea.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 2:22 PM
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Could we talk about Ke$ha and Miley Cyrus next? Gosh, are they dreamy.

But don't get me wrong: you guys are still the best.


Posted by: Pauly Shore | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 2:23 PM
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Dead, but don't let that stop you from flirting. It hasn't stopped me, yet.


Posted by: Dorothy Parker | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 2:24 PM
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680: If it's due today, it's hopeless, right? Do some cosmetic edits, and tell them that you're not sure about the substance, but it reads better now. No harm done, and they're out of your hair.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 2:26 PM
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686. No, a little thing like that wouldn't. Did they ever sort out your legacy to the NAACP or is that still in the courts?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 2:28 PM
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680: How honest do you feel you can be? Maybe some version of, "I'll do my best to edit this, but I'm not sure this provides as much substance as the editors will expect," or, more directly, "IME, this won't satisfy the editors' expectations."

On preview, LB's probably right.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 2:29 PM
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LB's certainly right. And you'll know not to do it again. So you're older and wiser.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 2:31 PM
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And you'll know not to do it again. So you're older and wiser.

That's really not my standard practice. I mean, I guess I do get older.


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 2:34 PM
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x.t., it's nice to see you on this here bandwagon! Saletan + sex always goes in the direction of interpreting something kind of normal as a sick, perverted (fap fap fap) taboo ugh oh mom is that you?


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 2:38 PM
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But, "So you're older and have a better developed sense of self-preservation" doesn't sound as good.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 2:39 PM
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I've decided that you can't account for the wrongness of incest without taking purity instincts--emotional repugnance at taboo behavior involving bodily things like sex and food--seriously. Simply talking about power relationships, fairness, and consent won't cover it. You have to give moral weight to that feeling of disgust, the same way you give moral weight to feelings of compassion for the suffering of others.

I'm not endorsing any kind of Biblical control on sex or anything. But you can't understand the acceptability of homosexuality and the unacceptability of incest if you simply look at sex as a random pleasurable activity that requires consent.

This seems weird, since I'm under the impression that many people who disapprove of homosexual behavior do so at least partly by taking purity instincts--emotional repugnance at taboo behavior involving bodily things like sex and food--seriously. And most right-thinking people argue that they're wrong to do so.

But you would invoke those sort of insticts to dinstinguish homosexual behavior from incestuous behavior? I think for many people tripping the purity instinct is exactly what ties those two things together, and makes both wrong.


Posted by: urple | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 2:41 PM
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Or, I probably completely misread you, didn't I?


Posted by: urple | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 2:41 PM
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An adult male alone at a Miley Cyrus concert might as well just register as a sex offender.

I was totally considering going to see Kesha. Considerations like the above plus the fact that she probably isn't very good live have made me reconsider.


Posted by: lemmy caution | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 2:48 PM
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Did they ever sort out your legacy to the NAACP or is that still in the courts?

As if I'd leave anything to that bitch, Hellman. Please, honey, do yourself a favor lest everyone think you're a racist.


Posted by: Dorothy Parker | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 2:49 PM
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Please: it's Ke$ha.


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 2:51 PM
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I wasn't being particularly clear.

If you decide to toss out all purity instincts, you will be forced to accept not only homosexuality but some forms of incest and beastiality as well. (This is where Peter Singer winds up.) To separate these cases, you need to accept the purity instinct as a prima facie moral reason, one that restricts action all other things being equal, but can be overridden by more important moral concerns.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 2:52 PM
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699: Couldn't you manage incest as a prudential rule without relying on purity? "Sure, if it were really consensual and freely chosen by all parties, all of whom were competent adults, I suppose it would be harmless. However, I think the odds of that happening in any given case are so low that it's not worth trying to figure out if we're looking at the vanishingly rare case where it's harmless; therefore we should prohibit it categorically."

Bestiality is harder, but as long as you keep cruelty to animals on the books, I don't really care.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:00 PM
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accept the purity instinct as a prima facie moral reason, one that restricts action all other things being equal, but can be overridden by more important moral concerns

Sorta like how I never have a taste for French onion dip, unless it's accompanied by Ruffles™ potato chips?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:01 PM
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Alternately, we can see the purity instinct as like the empathy/altruism & reciprocity/fairness sentiments insofar as they have all informed our history of moral judgments, and are all likely explained through similar evolutionary stories, but unlike insofar as it drops out under a constructivist process of rationalizing and making coherent our sense of normativity. Any political theory needs to take purity instincts into account insofar as it needs to deal with disagreement and diversity, but that's as far as it goes. The forms of incest/bestiality that can't be condemned on other grounds aren't worth the cost of giving what's, evolutionarily speaking, the appendix of the moral sentiments any pride of place in the foundations of normativity.


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:01 PM
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To separate these cases, you need to accept the purity instinct as a prima facie moral reason

Why? You can derive a meaningful distinction from fairness and equity concerns, handwaving about "consent won't cover it" notwithstanding.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:03 PM
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699: The forms or bestiality being when the animal is interested/instigating, I assume? I still rule it all out on consent issues, but I'm also not a philosopher and am only making rules for myself. Um, that sounds wrong. Of the three, I only have any interest in homosexuality in theory or practice, but for my own sense of morality and propriety I have no trouble disallowing bestiality but do think there's nothing beyond eugenics and squeamishness that rules out certain sorts of consensual incest for most people.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:03 PM
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I suppose that's just a more longwinded way of saying that the reductio ad Singer isn't all that fearsome. Although I'm more of a Sidgwickian, really.


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:05 PM
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I have to say, "siblings with benefits" is my takeaway from this conversation. I hope I don't ever have to use it.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:05 PM
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The forms or bestiality being when the animal is interested/instigating, I assume?

Those dolphins are notorious. IYKWIM. AITYD.


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:06 PM
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I have to say, "siblings with benefits" is my takeaway from this conversation.

I was thinking this, although I wasn't going to say it. But I'm glad you did!


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:07 PM
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It's like you guys never saw "Lonestar". Or heard that old Calypso song about the guys who can't get a date because all the girls he tries to go out with are potential sisters, according to his (nominal) father.


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:17 PM
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The forms or bestiality being when the animal is interested/instigating

The bitch was asking for it!


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:17 PM
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I think the odds of that happening in any given case are so low that it's not worth trying to figure out if we're looking at the vanishingly rare case where it's harmless

There is one very interesting set of cases that goes under the name "genetic sexual attraction" or more precisely, "reunion mediated genetic sexual attraction." It occurs when adults meet close blood relatives that they had no contact with in childhood. It is discussed rather long-windedly here. Basically the instinct that prevents us from having sex with blood relatives is triggered by childhood association, not genetics. They call this the Westermark effect, and it has been well verified empirically. If someone is around when you are being potty trained, you will not view them as a sexual object, whether they are your relative by blood or by adoption.

When the Westermark effect is not in place, a the contrary urge to have sex with people who are genetically similar to you takes over. As a result parents and children or siblings separated by adoption who meet again as adults are often consumed with romantic, sexual love for each other. The experience is confusing, but many wind up acting on the impulse.

Outsiders to these relatinoships, though, are still repulsed by them. The Westermark effect and GSA govern our own sexual reactions, but not our sense of moral taboos. So we have a nontrivial set of sexual relationships that are condemned by some people's taboos against incest but not by any moral instincts around fairness or harm to others.

I'm actually tempted to say that there is nothing wrong with these relationships. But in any case, it blocks us from viewing the incest taboo as simply a prudential rule.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:25 PM
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In our state, perhaps because it's one that's traditionally the butt of incest jokes, potential married couples have to affirm that they're more than second-cousin distance from one another. I hope we'll be able to get a fairly complete list of Mara's siblings on her father's side, but I don't know that she'll ever have that level of information if they don't want contact. This has no bearing on my take on consensual adult incest (which is that it's probably usually a bad idea and "consesual" can get pretty messy but that doesn't make me believe it should be categorically outlawed) and so I don't really know why I'm adding it. Oh well.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:27 PM
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I don't understand 680. Does "abstract" mean something different than what I expect here? I expect it to mean "short summary that explains what a paper or talk will contain, but contains no details". So "handwavey promissory notes" sort of sounds like the definition of the thing to me.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:29 PM
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pwned by 709.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:29 PM
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Ethnologically, I suppose rob is right, in that some form of incest taboo is culturally universal, but what it is that constitutes incest varies considerably. Frist cousins are legally prohibited in the West, but considered ideal marriage partners in some unilateral kinship systems because they help cement bond between two separte families. People we wouldn't even consider relatives are forbidden elsewhere because they are part of the same clan/macro-lineage. So purity taboos are the animating force and the nature of kinship what gives it any particular form.

But as others have argued, that's no reason to organize our moral universe along those lines today. One could imagine some sort of magic cultural extraction regime that would remove the sense of shame and revulsion from nominally consenual (or unknowing) incest, but given that it cuts down on traumatic abuse of children/toxic familial disfunction, I say keep it in place.


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:30 PM
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>i>If you decide to toss out all purity instincts, you will be forced to accept not only homosexuality but some forms of incest and beastiality as well.

Why? And there's a world of difference between not relying on purity instincts and basing judgements on an assessment of sex as "arandom pleasurable activity that requires consent".


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:30 PM
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"Sure, if it were really consensual and freely chosen by all parties, all of whom were competent adults, I suppose it would be harmless. However, I think the odds of that happening in any given case are so low that it's not worth trying to figure out if we're looking at the vanishingly rare case where it's harmless; therefore we should prohibit it categorically."

All parties? Jesus, are you thinking of incestuous orgies??

Also, (1) I disagree that the odds of an adult, sibling incestuous relationship being "really consensual and freely chosen by all parties" are vanishingly rare*, and I'm not sure what would make you think otherwise, and (2) even if one were to accept that it's vanishingly rare, your standard is a pretty shitty thing to impose on someone who falls into that subcategory. "Not worth trying to figure it out"? Not worth it to who?

*Adult sibling incestuous relationship generally are rare, but I have no reason to think the percentage of them that are consensual are a vanishing fraction of the total.


Posted by: urple | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:31 PM
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711: Really? Many?


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:31 PM
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that old Calypso song about the guys who can't get a date because all the girls he tries to go out with are potential sisters, according to his (nominal) father.

I assume Buffy Saint Marie's "Johnny Be Fair" is a variant on that.


Posted by: persistently visible | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:33 PM
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urge to have sex with people who are genetically similar to you

Huh. I didn't know there was such an urge. What's the basis--I thought natural selection favored genetic diversity?


Posted by: urple | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:34 PM
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People we wouldn't even consider relatives are forbidden elsewhere because they are part of the same clan/macro-lineage.

The Navajo version of this is particularly extreme (one of the strictest incest taboos in the world).


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:36 PM
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Calypso song

"Shame and Scandal in the Family"


Posted by: Jimmy Pongo | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:37 PM
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I don't understand 680. Does "abstract" mean something different than what I expect here? I expect it to mean "short summary that explains what a paper or talk will contain, but contains no details". So "handwavey promissory notes" sort of sounds like the definition of the thing to me.

Well, sorta, yes, but my understanding is that the typical thing with a philosophy abstract is to bullshit by making the claim you feel you're going to end up being able to support, even if you're not really sure how yet. Whereas what I'm talking about in this situation is a level of handwaveyness beyond that--"X's work is important because ... of its contribution to Y subfield!" (Where Y is the subfield the conference concerns.)


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:41 PM
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I thought natural selection favored genetic diversity?

The way it was explained to me, inbreeding depression and outbreeding depression are both problems, and species generally develop separate mechanisms to deal with each of them.

I was mostly just thinking though of the social phenomenon where we are attracted to people who are like us, sometimes called homophilia.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:46 PM
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homophilia

Sounds like the name of a bar in West Hollywood.


Posted by: Tasseled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:51 PM
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Actually, I think my reasons for wanting to accept some purity instincts have more to do with my general view of the role of reason and emotion in ethics than any specific concerns about legitimating homosexuality but not incest or bestiality. I might wind up drawing the same lines between acceptable and unacceptable conduct as everyone else here. I just have different ideas about how the theory behind it has to work.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:56 PM
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I might wind up drawing the same lines between acceptable and unacceptable conduct as everyone else here.

Somehow I doubt everyone here would draw the same lines.


Posted by: urple | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 3:59 PM
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720: What Rob says exactly, especially because it's most common in situations like adoption where someone who's been raised with genetically dissimilar people connects with genetically similar ones in adulthood. My partner and I met her bio half-sister for the first time this summer, and while there was no element of attraction involved, there was something uncanny at times about meeting someone who looked so much like Lee and shared some of her mannerisms and preferences but was basically a stranger.

To expand on what I said about Mara, one weird thing about adoption is that in theory it breaks any legal prohibitions on incest among biological family since Mara would be legally Lee's child and no one else's if we adopted her now, since our state also won't let lesbians co-adopt. So there'd be no legal restrictions on my family members or those in her biological family since that's how adoption works here. However she'll have the cultural incest taboo with my family if she sticks around and she's got the taboo against too-close genetic sharing with her own family. I don't know what people recommending anti-incest laws think about situations like this one.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 4:03 PM
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My mom has a first cousin who married a first cousin (from the other side). They live in Thornia, and had to go to a different place to get hitched. Both were at least 60 at the time, I think, and decided not to care whether anyone cared.

I've probably mentioned that my mom's great-grandfather (and the cousin's great-grandfather as well, for those keeping score at home) was a product of two first cousin marriages: that is, each of his parents was the child of a first cousin marriage. This did not take place in Thornia -- apparently they had their own little Appalachia going in Greenwich Connecticut in the early 19th century.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 4:21 PM
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719, 722: It's an even older story. There's a French version on the web somewhere.

But seriously: The psychiatrists! Who are just as neurotic as their patients! Where are they?


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 5:05 PM
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My father's parents weren't cousins themselves, but they had a cousin in common. Hard to wrap your head around.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 5:06 PM
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711 is fascinating, and I buy it entirely even without the studies, for the reasons Thorn outlines: there was something uncanny at times about meeting someone who looked so much like Lee and shared some of her mannerisms and preferences but was basically a stranger.

I've mentioned before that I'm adopted; I can't truly imagine what it would be like to meet my own bio sister (if I have one), but don't doubt that it would freak me out in very deep ways. To see myself somewhat doubled? When I've known myself all my life as unique? Perhaps there would be a deep tie based just on mannerism and appearance, whether or I not I actually liked the woman. Ogged mentioned something like this once with respect to a particular cousin in Iran met for the first time as a fellow 30-year-old.

If my hypothetical sister were instead a brother, it's not difficult to imagine a sexual attraction that wouldn't particularly have anything to do with narcissism, but just with, say, recognition.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 5:25 PM
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Parsimon, in the not-so-much I've read about genetic sexual attraction, it sounds a lot like what you describe, that there's a peculiar and enhanced spark of recognition. I guess it's like any time you meet someone new who interests you and there's a little moment of excitement when you choose the same salad dressing or have the same favorite book or whatever it is that makes you see yourself in that person, except that it's clear that relatives even when raised separately often have more in common than do total strangers.

I do think another aspect, especially when dealing with adoption, is to what extent one or both parties involved felt a sense of loss or emptiness. Lee's biodad (whose parents adopted Lee) fathered her half-sister Shasta something like six months before he died, so she grew up fatherless and with no connection to his family, biracial in an otherwise white family. For many reasons, she felt a huge sense of loss and alienation, and while I have no reason to believe the reunion we helped facilitate raised any GSA issues, she was visibly moved to have elderly relatives saying, "Oh, your grandmother had freckles on her nose just like that" and so on, not to mention that they just plan accepted her. But she'd had time to come to terms with all this and find out through the grapevine who her family members were before meeting them, too.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 5:42 PM
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734

And since I'm throwing out only tangentially relevant comments now, I'll add that in many (or at least several) states the age of consent for a foster parent and a current/former foster child is higher (sometimes as high as 21 for the non-parent) than the age of consent in general. To me, this seems like a good way of dealing with the power differential aspect of not-quite-legally-incest relationships, though on the whole I think it's better not to infantilize (for lack of a better term) those who age out of foster care.

I really hope none of this sounds creepy in light of my curent situation. I just come across this stuff reading about adoption ethics, I swear!


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 5:45 PM
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711 really is fascinating.

Not that any of you should care about the ramblings of a non-professional, but my own strong inclination is to be skeptical of all theories of morality that rely heavily on consent, since all such theories seem like bullshit and consent is so complicated; I certainly don't think a consent-based theory can justify the incest taboo.

I also don't think there's anything generally wrong whatsoever with enforcing taboos or prejudices, and am enormously skeptical of the idea that moral behavior is closely related to reason or can usefully be explained or prescribed by anything that looks like moral philosophy. The notion that trolley problems are going to explain what's wrong with incest just seems like nonsense all the way down.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 5:55 PM
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736

A friend of mine was adopted at birth, and when he was 18 his parents gave him and his siblings [all adopted, but all with different birth parents] their adoption details so they could check out/make contact with their birth families if they wanted.

My friend found his experience quite disturbing and part of it was, I think, that his birth sisters came on to him pretty strongly. He is/was a handsome looking guy, in just the sort of rock-star 'tailored suit with t-shirt and 5-day beard' kind of way that (at the time) was cat-nip to a certain type of person, and that, plus the genetic attraction mentioned above, and the fact that while he's British his birth family are not [so he was exotically foreign to them] all sort of mushed up, and he spent his fortnight with them basically fending off his sisters.

There was, iirc, a Guardian article some years back on genetic attraction between family members who weren't brought up together with a number of similar stories.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 5:59 PM
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It's like you guys never saw "Lonestar".

I regret not taking the opportunity to tell Chris Cooper how much I liked that movie when we were stuck in the extra-screening line at LaGuardia one Christmas Eve.

Unrelated: the progress of the thread from matters of alcohol to questions of consent is reminiscent of college during the '90s.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 6:01 PM
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re: 734

The UK formalizes all relationships in which power might work that way. Consent is 16, except with individuals who work with or care for you in certain ways, when it's 18. It can get a bit silly,* but exists for those kinds of reasons.

* I have a martial arts student, and who is over the legal age of consent, but who has to bring her parent to class while I teach because I don't have the appropriate legal license to be alone with under 18s [despite the age of consent being 16].


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 6:02 PM
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she was visibly moved to have elderly relatives saying, "Oh, your grandmother had freckles on her nose just like that" and so on

Yeah, since we're wholly off-topic now: my mom was reunited with her (full) bio-sister for the first time when they were both in their late 50s/early 60s. The sister had been adopted out at birth, while my mother was kept. As it were. So there was a great deal of sharing of photos and information about parents and grandparents (deceased by then); my mom and her newfound sister looked a great deal alike, as well as very much like their mother. In retrospect, I'm not sure we were as attuned to what my newfound aunt must have been feeling (shock, a kind of push-pull, fears regarding whether she was accepted) as we might have been. It was a very strange time.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 6:03 PM
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You know, the first cousin taboo is really, really recent, and I'm pretty sure that marrying first cousins is legal in most states even now. Novels from the first half of the twentieth century and earlier, people are marrying their first cousins right and left.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 6:09 PM
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741

Legal in 32 states, including New York, right?


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 6:20 PM
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742

Oh, the reverse: Illegal in 31 states.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 6:21 PM
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735: enormously skeptical of the idea that moral behavior is closely related to reason or can usefully be explained or prescribed by anything that looks like moral philosophy

Just to note: You're viewing "moral philosophy" through a clouded lens: there's plenty out there that doesn't insist on rationalizing moral behavior, reducing moral reasoning to other forms of reasoning. Rob is sketching a way with respect to this topic.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 6:21 PM
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743: Yeah, probably right. What Rob says makes sense to me.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 6:24 PM
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745

The sage also wrote that Champagne makes girls want to dance and drop their pants. Just sayin'.

There's a reason that the item depicted on the label of the port Jesus and his pals made is a dispenser of lubricant. Or so I'm told.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 6:24 PM
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746

740: I thought 2nd cousin pairs were common in the recent past, but not first.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 6:31 PM
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747

736: I'm amazed at Russell Brand's restraint in this one instance.


Posted by: Cryptic njed | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 6:39 PM
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748

I had a thing with a first cousin. Take two kids who have always liked each other a lot, stick them alone in an isolated mountain place for a while, let the hormones do the rest. Lots of fun and after some standard issue breakup minor trauma, we went back to being close friends and have remained such for a good twenty years now. Other than being occasionally being 'aware' of the other in an ex sort of way, no big deal. Dawno i nie prawda, as the saying goes.

And to go back to the cocktail sub-thread, I went to a place called Il Matto tonight. Awesome bizarre cocktails for insane prices (low to mid teens) excellent inventive strange food for reasonable (for Manhattan) prices: low to mid teen appetizers, low to mid twenties main courses. Now Becks/Btock style, as if you couldn't guess.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 7:58 PM
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740 -- My mom's great-grandfather railed about the taboo in letters written in the 1890s. This was before he became addicted to opiates. While he was still a med school professor.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:19 PM
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His father, one of the first cousin children, was a circus performer. I've been unable to learn what his event was -- he caught some Asian cholera while touring, and died young.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:21 PM
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748: Like the song "Our Love Is Consanguinity."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 8:30 PM
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745: Incidentally, those labels (designed by my pal and co-founder Matt) won a gold medal in Wine Maker Magazine's label contest—not really much to brag about, given the look of some of the other winners and the magazine's own design sensibility—but they also got noticed by Communication Arts, which is pretty flattering.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:19 PM
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But to your point, the laydeez do seem to like it.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:20 PM
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754

I did not until just now understand which Jesus nosflow was talking about in 745.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-15-10 9:22 PM
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755

You know, the first cousin taboo is really, really recent, and I'm pretty sure that marrying first cousins is legal in most states even now. Novels from the first half of the twentieth century and earlier, people are marrying their first cousins right and left.

Charles Darwin, for example.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-16-10 1:53 AM
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756

You know, the first cousin taboo is really, really recent, and I'm pretty sure that marrying first cousins is legal in most states even now.

For certain values of recent. Canon law forbids marriage closer than third cousin, so before the reformation not only could you not marry your first cousin, but not even your second cousin, or cousin once removed. A prohibition which frequently evaporated if you were rich enough to bribe the church of course.

Not quite sure why the reformers thought it wise to change this, but they did. The Episcopalians allow first cousin marriage but nothing closer; no idea about anybody else.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-16-10 2:01 AM
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I suspect the reformers decided to change it because of the whole bribery thing. If you were a noble in mediaeval Europe, it can't have been easy to find anyone to marry who was of suitable rank and not some sort of cousin. Puts the Church in quite a strong negotiating position.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-16-10 4:12 AM
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758

If you were a noble in mediaeval Europe, it can't have been easy to find anyone to marry who was of suitable rank and not some sort of cousin.

IIRC from perusal of "Wolf Hall", it was more that marrying cousins was a good way of consolidating estates and cementing alliances.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-16-10 4:39 AM
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758: Worked too

Bella gerant alii, tu felix Austria nube.
Nam quae Mars aliis, dat tibi diva Venus.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-16-10 4:44 AM
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Wolf Hall's set a bit later than that, I think. And annulments were pretty much routine.

Awesome quote from the wiki on the subject:

"Despite the writings of Scottish deputy commissioner for lunacy Arthur Mitchell that cousin marriage had injurious effects on offspring, these conclusions were largely contradicted by researchers like Alan Huth and George Darwin. Mitchell had claimed that inbreeding in Scottish fishing communities led to a lower average hat size of six and seven-eighths, a quarter inch less than their more outbred neighbors."


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-16-10 4:45 AM
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"deputy commissioner for lunacy". That's a job title we need to revive.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 12-16-10 4:48 AM
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762

"What's that, darling? Who says family doesn't kiss!"


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 12-16-10 4:49 AM
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In a lot of Arab societies it's not only allowed but preferred: and sometimes the woman isn't allowed to marry anyone else without the approval of her male cousin (specifically, the son of her father's eldest brother). The male cousin gets first refusal, as it were. Cousin marriage rates can run at 75%.

This is why, if you want to do research into inherited disorders in humans, you go to the Middle East, where some of them run at about 100 times the frequency in other societies.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-16-10 4:51 AM
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764

"deputy commissioner for lunacy". That's a job title we need to revive.

That, and the Committee for the Rectification of Dooms. (Yes, it really existed, in the Scottish parliament in the 16th century. A relative was doing research on the topic and came across it.)


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-16-10 4:53 AM
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765

Cousin marriage is also prevalent among Kashmiris. We used to live next door to such a couple and their kids were in a shocking state. It's a very sensitive topic in health educatoin circles.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-16-10 4:59 AM
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766

765: Why can't they be like we were, multi-alleled in every way? What's the matter with kids today?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-16-10 5:08 AM
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767

We used to live next door to such a couple and their kids were in a shocking state.

Were they on your lawn constantly?


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 12-16-10 5:16 AM
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768

Were they on your lawn constantly?

It would have been nice if they's been able to get there.



Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-16-10 5:17 AM
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769

those labels (designed by my pal and co-founder Matt)

Those labels are really great.


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 12-16-10 5:39 AM
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770

I'm sure that it is both possible (likely?) that knocking-up your cousin doesn't significantly increase the chances of a genetic problem in the offspring and that having a societal preference for knocking-up your cousin can cause some problems after a few generations.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-16-10 6:27 AM
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770. Certainly. Pursuant to 765, our present neighbours are also a first cousin marriage and none of their children are remotely physically or mentally impaired - well above average indeed. But I'd be happy to see them paired off with somebody other than a cousin, just the same (I suspect they will, they've got minds of their own).


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-16-10 6:32 AM
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558: I was a bit surprised when I first met a good friend's fiance, whose name I knew was Tenisha, and saw that she was white. (Because I'm racist, probably.)


Posted by: urple | Link to this comment | 12-16-10 4:47 PM
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772: I was shocked, too—shocked you weren't the color of a violet. I had always just assumed...


Posted by: Tenisha | Link to this comment | 12-16-10 4:52 PM
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774

Didi anyone else read Green Mars?


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 12-17-10 7:51 PM
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775

If any of you cousinfuckers are still interested in cocktails, I have come back for a second bite of the maraschino cherry, in fictional form, in my Christmas sermon, currently available on Crooked Timber.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 3:49 AM
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776

Very nice. I was confused at the end, because I don't see how a Natalie Portman movie, no matter how skinny she is, relates to risk management.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 6:41 AM
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777

Yes, I hear that Taleb was absolutely aghast at what the bastards had done to his book in development.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 6:50 AM
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778

I don't see how a Natalie Portman movie, no matter how skinny she is, relates to risk management.

Lesbian sex is the safest sex of all.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 6:55 AM
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779

Oh, I thought you were talking about this place. I'm sure they dispense all sorts of wisdom if you get chatting to the regulars. Beer was alright too, last time I was there.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 7:00 AM
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778: Maybe I should go see that movie.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 7:28 AM
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558: I was a bit surprised when I first met a good friend's fiance, whose name I knew was Tenisha, and saw that she was white. (Because I'm racist, probably.)

I believe we have someone around here who now knows that because they pronounce"Siobhan" "Shavaun", it can lead to that reaction.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 8:09 AM
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782

How else can you pronounce it?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 8:16 AM
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783

See-oh-buh-han?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 8:18 AM
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784

Sure, that's the normal way to pronounce it. And it also sounds like a stereotypical lower-class African-American name.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 8:22 AM
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785

You can pronounce it that way, but you can't expect anybody to answer to it.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 8:23 AM
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786

ned, what do Irish Hyphen Americans call their daughters then? (I mean, obviously a bunch of names, but is that one excluded for sounding black?)


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 8:26 AM
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787

786: Elizabeth (the posh ones) or Mary (the rest). Duh.


Posted by: Annelid Gustator | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 8:27 AM
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788

787 s/b Bridgette and Colleen.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 8:29 AM
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789

And Eithne is excluded for looking ethnic?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 8:31 AM
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790

I think Colleen, Shannon, Bridget and Megan convey some amount of Irishness. Siobhan is by far the most popular [ahead of Sinead and Mairead] among names that use the wacky Irish orthography. Unless you count Caitlin [pronounced Kate-lin rather than the Irish way].


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 8:33 AM
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791

See-oh-buh-han?

"Sh-bam".


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 8:33 AM
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792

I know an American Caitlin. Her grandfather sticks firmly to Karcheleen (approx.) Nobody else does.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 8:37 AM
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793

||

If the Facebook is to be believed, my brother has acquired a pet scorpion. Who does that?

|>


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 8:42 AM
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794

793: Anyboy who sets down their shoes in New Mexico, according to an uncle of mine.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 8:44 AM
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795

Hey LB, sent you a message about the LA party on January 7.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 8:46 AM
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796

Siobhan (pronounced properly) sounds black? Huh. What about Niamh?


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 8:46 AM
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797

Siobhan, pronounced properly, rhymes with 'no fault insurance.'


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 8:53 AM
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798

Siobhan (pronounced properly) sounds black? Huh.

A lot of African-American names begin with an unstressed shə, lə, or də sound.

What about Niamh?

Probably sounds like a movie alien to most Americans.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 8:54 AM
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799

Seriously, Niamh is pronounced "neev"? WTF? Use the right letters, you drunks.


Posted by: Annelid Gustator | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 8:59 AM
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800

799: Of course, the internet could be misleading me, here.


Posted by: Annelid Gustator | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 9:01 AM
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801

I don't think there are any prominent Americans named "Neev", so it would just sound exotic. Actress Neve Campbell is pronounced "Nev".


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 9:01 AM
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802

801: Really? I assumed it was "Neev" and was an Anglicisation of Niamh.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 9:04 AM
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803

WTF? Use the right letters, you drunks.

THAT'S WHAT WE'VE BEEN SAYING FOR CENTURIES NOW, YOU YANKS.


Posted by: OPINIONATED ENGLISHMAN | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 9:06 AM
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804

Neve Campbell's a Canuck.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 9:06 AM
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805

Apparently Neve Campbell's father is from Glasgow and her mother is a Dutch Jew. And "Neve" was her mother's surname.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 9:07 AM
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806

See-oh-buh-han?

Or Sigh-oh-ban, as it turns out.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 9:25 AM
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807

Huh. I always thought her father was a glaciologist and had actually christened her "Névé".

"And this is my other daughter, Frazil. And my son, Growler."


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 9:30 AM
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808

And my other son, "Frozen caveman."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 9:31 AM
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809

Girls' names:

Arête
Corrie
Moraine
Moulin
Névé
Varve

Boys' names:

Bergshrund
Crevasse
Drumlin
Esker
Kame
Randkluft
Tarn
Till


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 9:38 AM
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810

Poor Cwm always gets left behind.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 9:41 AM
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811

I thought Crevasse was a girl's name, though possibly African American.

Moraine can be either. Pronounce to rhyme with the region next to Alsace, it's a girl. Pronounced 'Murrin', it's a boy.

I actually used to know a girl IRL called Tarn. Not well enough to ask he what, if anything, it was short for.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 9:44 AM
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812

Cwm's doing OK. She moved in with Rhondda.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 9:45 AM
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813

I would have totally pegged Cwm as a boy's name.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 9:48 AM
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814

811: Not well enough to ask he[r] what, if anything, it was short for.

"Tarnation", obvs.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 9:50 AM
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815

813: I would have totally pegged Cwm

Hey! Whaddya think this is, the Welsh navy?


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 9:52 AM
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816

Till is a pretty common boy's name in Germany.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 9:52 AM
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817

814 -- That's the UNC fan club?


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 10:08 AM
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818

816: Very common. In mythology, the third day of the week was Till Tiwes' Day in commemeration of his hang over-induced request, "Hush, Hush. Keep down now. Voices carry."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 10:11 AM
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819

808: And my other son, "Frozen caveman."

Ötzi.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 10:13 AM
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820

Contemporary hairstyle historians now know that the Cwmover first emerged in Wales.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 12-22-10 11:53 AM
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