Re: Hire and Fire and Hire Ed.

1

When I was a grad student, a professor I was working for once called me "a resource" to my face. He had some consulting sideline stuff going so I assume that's where I picked it up.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 5:43 AM
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A friend of mine has spent much of this year negotiating the terms of gifts to his college and B-school. I've helped, mainly by writing the gift terms. Respectable educational institutions are astonishingly venal.

OT: Another friend of mine recently informed me that he and his wife are going to get divorced. I am a little freaked out by this news, having (i) been in their wedding and (ii) thought, from the day I first saw them together, they were an ideal match.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 5:52 AM
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Have your one friend write his gift terms to include that the B-school helps the other friend and his wife stay together.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 5:54 AM
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Maybe if there was a building named after both of them, they would stay together for the sake of not having to redo the signs.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 5:56 AM
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Don't think of it as getting divorced, think of it as strategically dynamizing their marriage.


Posted by: Awl | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 6:00 AM
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2: Maybe they were an ideal match?


Posted by: real ffeJ annaH | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 6:00 AM
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"If the president had been a man, I would have conveyed the same sentiments from the board, no question about it."

Look how Dragas changes the subject here: Asked about whether Sullivan was judged in the same fashion as a man would have been, she responds that had the board reached a similar judgment about a man, it would have been conveyed the same way.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 6:01 AM
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6: And one or both of them are so unsuited to long-term companionship that divorce was still certain.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 6:03 AM
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6, 8: I blame myself, really. I should have handled the ring delivery more adroitly at the nuptials.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 6:04 AM
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Showing yet again that an Ideal must respect closure regarding its Ring.


Posted by: Awl | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 6:12 AM
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So you were best man or this was years ago and you were ring bearer? If the former, I suppose you signed the certificate as a witness. You've got to be careful because if you've witnessed two marriages that end in divorce or spouse-murdering, you're not allowed to witness any more.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 6:13 AM
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The couple among my friends I was most sure would stay together has divorced. Turns out she was unmedicatedly bipolar (and abusive) and he was closeted. One truly never knows.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 6:18 AM
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Everybody's happy now and their girls love both their stepfathers. It gets better!


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 6:19 AM
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Wait, I had to sign something? Why doesn't anyone tell me these things at the time?


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 6:19 AM
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10: Groan.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 6:21 AM
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But in recent weeks, many of them have begun to consider the possibility that there was actually no vast conspiracy, just a small circle of meddlers with a naïve faith in the capacities of heroic leadership.

The concerns of the board members do sound valid (at least the way they're described in this article), but then the stupid way they talked about the next superawesome dynamic hero everything-fixer president they were going to get kind of cancel out that earlier credibility.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 6:25 AM
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||
Sausagely made a characteristic typo in his slate blog...that made it into the title of the piece...on the Slate front page.

So much for better with editors.
|>


Posted by: Annelid Gustator | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 6:37 AM
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14: You might have saved somebody a bunch of legal bills.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 6:38 AM
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17: s/b "hold".


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 6:39 AM
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Rather, "Wearable Robots Can Held People Walk Again" s/b "Hold Me Closer, Tiny Robot".


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 6:46 AM
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Don't think of it as getting divorced, think of it as strategically dynamizing their marriage.

I am stealing this from Awl.

If only we had the Pep Band to talk about how our team has been strategically dynamic this year.

Regarding divorce: oudemia is correct. One never knows.


Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 7:04 AM
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Tiny robots with surveillance equipment could help one know.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 7:11 AM
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20: No, " "Hold Me Closer, Walking-Robot".


Posted by: Annelid Gustator | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 7:12 AM
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Or, "I Wish I Had a Detachable Femur"


Posted by: Annelid Gustator | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 7:14 AM
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The article itself is all about how we could spur the production of more useful robots by taxing the less pedestrian (so to speak) robots.


Posted by: Annelid Gustator | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 7:15 AM
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Regarding divorce: oudemia is correct. One never knows.

We all are spies in the house of love.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 7:46 AM
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How many songs about spies in houses of love are there? I was amazed to find out that Was (Not Was)'s "Spy In The House Of Love" is completely unrelated to the dBs' "Spy In The House Of Love". Now I find out they were both predated by this Doors song. Where did this love house spy concept originate? Georges Bataille or something?


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 7:50 AM
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I first thought of the dBs. But then I thought, no, polyphony is too modern for our Flip.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 7:52 AM
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24 reminds me of the opening sequence of "2001: A Space Odyssey", in which an ape attempts to fight off his enemies but fails. He then picks up a thigh bone and with the aid of this is able to batter them to death, proving conclusively that the Femur of the Species is More Deadly than the Male.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 7:54 AM
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Would you like a teaching position in my new charter school?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 7:56 AM
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27: No, Anaïs Nin.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 7:57 AM
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Via the Doors.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 8:12 AM
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32, surely not?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 8:15 AM
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I do not want a teaching position in Anais Nin.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 8:21 AM
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This story may seem absurd, but the guy who wrote is probably glad that at least he didn't have to review a Rush concert.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 8:26 AM
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35: "Libertarians use State Power to Defend Unearned Rent"


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 8:29 AM
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I thought the absurdity was that people were buying Rush merch.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 8:32 AM
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34. AFAIK Jim Morrison got the expression from NIn and everybody else got it from one or the other.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 8:34 AM
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How exactly does one set one's face in a "thoughtful rictus"?


Posted by: Lord Castock | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 9:11 AM
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I do not want a teaching position in Anais Nin.

No, she's more of a research institution.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 9:11 AM
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Also intriguing: the article is noted in the past tense as appearing in print at a future date. Trippy.


Posted by: Lord Castock | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 9:14 AM
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10, 15: Nobody appreciated it when I made that joke in our wedding program, but everyone was like, "Oh, J.L. Austin jokes! How delightfully droll!" Haters.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 9:34 AM
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Where did this love house spy concept originate?

Aaarrrrgggh.

I see neb was quickly on the case, however. People who haven't read Anais Nin are ... lack ... suffer from ... I cannot finish. Dudes, you have to read Anais Nin! Ladders to Fire, A Spy in the House of Love; I don't say you have to get into the diaries, those being pretty hard-core, but you cannot possibly imagine that you were a tortured intellectual passionate introvert nerd without ... aargh.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 10:01 AM
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I haven't read Anaïs Nin! I suffer from being unable to finish.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 10:14 AM
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Where did this tortured intellectual passionate introvert nerd concept originate?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 10:15 AM
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I suffer from being unable to finish.

If it persists for more than 4 hours, seek medical attention urgently.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 10:17 AM
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Anais Nin, duh. And Lawrence Durrell. Don't tell me people haven't read The Alexandria Quartet either! Look, I'm just saying: my whole life changed when that freshman roommate in college pointed them out to me. Ohhh, I said. This requires some thought, I said.

|| Meanwhile, I'm a tad exuberant because we've just signed a year lease with tenants on my mom's house up on the lake, I've just switched over the electric bill, and this is just such a relief. |>


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 10:25 AM
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The couple among my friends I was most sure would stay together has divorced.

My ex-to-be and I got a perfect--perfect!--score on our compatibility test. I blame the Church.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 10:27 AM
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And now I'm forgetting to do proper em dashes. Christ, everything is just falling apart.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 10:29 AM
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48: Your wedding, as described, was pretty cool too. (Seriously, you and CA should just get married.)


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 10:29 AM
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The couple among my friends I was most sure would stay together has divorced. Turns out she was unmedicatedly bipolar (and abusive) and he was closeted. One truly never knows.

How close were you with them? I get "one never knows" but if you thought you knew them very well, that would be one hell of a surprise.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 10:35 AM
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If you had visits that were completely in phase with the mood cycling, you'd miss the bipolar part.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 10:38 AM
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44: Did you get past "the joyous, joyous, joyous impaling of a woman on a man's sensual mast"? That, according to my personal records, is where I stopped reading A Spy in the House of Love.


Posted by: lurid keyaki | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 10:39 AM
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Speaking of the creative process, the whole latest middle east violence thing makes more sense now that I've learned it doesn't involve the Terry Jones I was thinking of.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 10:43 AM
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53. It would have been where I stopped too, but I've always found Nin completely unreadable and about as erotic as a frozen haddock.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 10:43 AM
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He was my best friend (XY edition) in high school. (She also went to high school with me/us, but I didn't know her well. They got together after they'd graduated college.) I had seen them a few times since their marriage and they seemed quite happy. His being gay (well, bi, but married to a guy now) wasn't surprising really I guess, not because of any "clues" just because *shrug* human sexuality. Her bipolar disorder and violence I never saw a hint of. Really, the thing that first had me wondering what was up with her was when he was awarded primary custody of the kids, which was a shocker because they both live in the same town.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 10:43 AM
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56 to 51, duh.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 10:44 AM
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I was fairly isolated in my knowledge that my sister's husband sucked, but I was, I suppose, as surprised as everyone else when their marriage flamed out so horribly. You can at least hope that seemingly compatible friends can manage a considerate, compassionate divorce, I guess. In the meantime, just keep rereading Montaigne?


Posted by: lurid keyaki | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 10:45 AM
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Not that it makes sense, but that makes more sense. I was mapping it onto my least-likely-to-break-up friends, who I see all the time and have intimate conversations with, separately, and I know Will/Apo/"You never know", and while they could certainly get divorced, I utterly can't imagine either of them being violently bipolar (currently).


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 10:49 AM
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It's an apt turn of phrase for the realization that the epistemological problem of other people's emotions is reflected in one's own self-ignorance, you reprobates.

Also, it's one of the less grossly-underwritten songs in the Doors repertoire. That hippie didn't have much in the way of stick-to-it-iveness when it came to writing anything past the first draft of a verse and a half.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 10:55 AM
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I don't like or dislike Anaïs Nin very much, though.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 10:56 AM
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53, 55: Well, anybody can be taken out of context. (Ahem.) I most remember some scenes on some guy's houseboat, and wandering the banks. I don't recall which of the Cities of the Interior books that was from.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:00 AM
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Wandering the banks after the sad, sad, sad impaling of a man's houseboat on a sensual rock.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:03 AM
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||

My adviser just came back my desk and kind of wandered around confused for a little while, like he was trying to think of something. Then he looked at me, and was very clearly about to ask me about something. Then I guess he remembered that I had sent him a bunch of work for review last night and said "oh, I haven't read your thing yet. You're off the hook for a while."

Having an elderly adviser is kind of fun.

|>


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:04 AM
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Sometimes it smacks a bit of "Twilight sucks!"-esque sexism to beat up poor Anaïs Nin's prose, but she could be pretty ridiculous.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:06 AM
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Fifty Deltas of Venus?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:09 AM
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65: Um... Twilight does suck.


Posted by: Lord Castock | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:12 AM
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Sexist.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:13 AM
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||
For the past couple of days I have been SO HUNGRY, and also, SO TIRED. I have been eating easily twice as much as I usually do, and I'll finish an enormous meal only to be ravenous again minutes later. The other day when I went to the bakery and the line was longer than I anticipated, I nearly blacked out from exhaustion and lightheadedness. This is impacting my work, because I'm so tired I can't focus and so hungry I can't think about anything but food. All I want to do is sleep and eat. What in god's name is wrong with me. I'm not pregnant, I swear.
|>


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:14 AM
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Tapeworm.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:15 AM
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69: Go to the doctor? Sounds like maybe you have a tapeworm or something?


Posted by: Lord Castock | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:16 AM
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OMG IT IS THE GRAIN.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:16 AM
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Late-onset whatever that German-name-syndrome is where the person's hunger never switches off and they have to be handcuffed to chairs and stuff?


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:17 AM
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But really, go to the doctor.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:18 AM
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Have you tried a cleanse? I've been drinking this blue stuff for weeks and haven't killed anybody! Except my husband.


Posted by: OPINIONATED WOMAN ON THE NEXT ELLIPTICAL MACHINE | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:18 AM
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73. OMG, it's prader willi syndrome. Totally this.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:19 AM
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73: and they have to be handcuffed to chairs and stuff?

"50 Shades of Grey" Syndrome, actually. It's their hunger for passion that never switches off.


Posted by: Lord Castock | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:19 AM
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73: The kid of someone I knew in high school has that (they think induced by brain damage suffered from brain surgery and chemo in infancy). She has to padlock the fridge and all the cabinets and if he isn't physically restrained he'll assault someone/anyone in order to get more food. I think he is in some kind of facility (associated with PSU?) for it now.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:21 AM
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73: Prader-Willi syndrome. Except it's not that.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:21 AM
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79: jms says you're wrong, Hick! Burn!


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:23 AM
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Have you spent much time around urple recently?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:23 AM
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jms, are you really thirsty lately?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:24 AM
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Maybe it's ebola?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:26 AM
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70-71, I'm pretty sure it's not tapeworms, because WebMD (why would I need to see a live doctor, when I have one on the internets?) says the symptoms for that are nausea and loss of appetite, not eating everything within a 5 km radius.

I just finished all the peanut m&ms at the receptionist's desk, time to go forage for more food now.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:27 AM
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82. Yes! Also, there have been rabies warnings posted around the lake where I jog.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:27 AM
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84: It almost sounds like diabetes. Probably what Mobes is getting at in 82. Been waking up at night to go to the bathroom?


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:28 AM
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Have you been doing cross-fit?


Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:29 AM
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Have you awoken in the morning mysteriously covered in blood?

Have any of your neighbors asked you about unearthly howls?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:29 AM
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My appetite is actually much calmer today. This is a fun game, but I want to assure everyone that I think I'm fine.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:29 AM
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86: That's exactly what I'm getting at.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:31 AM
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82, 86. I'm pretty sure it's not diabetes.

88. Yes, but that's not, like, a new thing.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:31 AM
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Have any of your neighbors asked you about unearthly howls?

No judgments!


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:32 AM
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91: Some blood sugar regulation issue was my first thought too.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:32 AM
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jms, go to the doctor, babe. It sounds like your system isn't processing your food intake into energy in a proper manner. The docs should be able to figure it out.

For the rest of you: stop making fun of my 19-year-old passion for Anais Nin. You haven't read the diaries. She was writing that fiction for a certain audience at the time. Also her explicitly erotic stuff was way worse than her more contemplative stuff, as was the case for the erotic writing of practically every other writer taking a stab at the genre (then and now). There remain some truly golden moments. She breaks up with people frequently, or never starts up with them, because something about them is just deeply troubling; she remains a dreamer and explorer. When did you all die inside?! Bleh! Anais Nin is important!

It's possible I'm romanticizing a bit. It was all 20 years ago when I read her.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:33 AM
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What's been in these enormous meals you've been eating?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:33 AM
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91.1: As in pretty sure because you had a blood sugar test not too long ago or pretty sure because you think you're too fit for Type II and too old for Type I?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:33 AM
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94: Try reading her again, and then report back to us.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:34 AM
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too fit for Type II and too old for Type I?

Hooray for Type 1.5! Fucking diabetes.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:35 AM
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OK, uh, maybe. I've been losing weight (not on purpose -- my mom brought it to my attention when I saw her a few weeks ago), so I thought maybe the appetite thing was my body trying to get back my lost calories, but now that I think about it, maybe it's also something else.

:(


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:35 AM
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96. Pretty much that -- I'm not in a risk category for Type II.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:36 AM
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Okay, let's talk about something else now.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:38 AM
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What Moby said. Get checked. We have a couple guys in my dept. who developed Type I as adults. It's weird but not unheard of.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:38 AM
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Running ten miles a day might contribute as well!

Sit on the couch more!


Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:42 AM
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97: I'm considering that. Now I'm fearful.

The truth is, I have a tendency to conflate Nin and Durrell; I read them in a thick intensity. I take all the pooh-poohing under advisement. If even Castock raises his brow, I pause.

How do you all feel about Henry Miller?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:43 AM
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I also know someone who developed Type I as an adult. (Also, I have the impression that while Type II is strongly associated with being overweight/unfit, that it also just hits some people for no obvious reason.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:43 AM
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104.last: Very glad I never had to interact with him personally.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:44 AM
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At least it's not like hepatitis where they keep adding new types. Still just I and II.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:48 AM
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How do you all feel about Henry Miller?

Never read him because I'm put off by the commonly held view that all the women in his character are less-than-fully-realized sex objects. Is this not the case?


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:49 AM
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98 to 107.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:49 AM
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107, see 98.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:50 AM
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The main thing I recall reaching about Henry Miller when I read him in college was that all though there were a lot of sex scenes, they were all really short, which led me to conclude that he was a 2 minute brother.

I recently picked up a volume of Nin's diaries and read a random passage. It was actually a very neat little bit about the sensual pleasures of setting type by hand.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:50 AM
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106: I'm glad I never had to interact personally with Ernest Hemingway. But I'm talking about the writing.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:50 AM
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all the women in his character

That didn't make sense. All the women in his books.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:54 AM
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I read about 20-30 pages into Tropic of Cancer and gave up. He was going on about much he preferred the happy stupid whore over the tragic whore. He seemed to be terribly proud of himself for being such a contrarian.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:58 AM
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less-than-fully-realized sex objects

I want a fully-realized sex object.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 11:59 AM
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Delta of Venus was second only to "The Hite Report on Female Sexuality" in my youthful sexual development. I think I was 10 or 11 when the dogged exploration of my parents library yielded those treasures.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:05 PM
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||

I finished my work week with a high speed pursuit with a murder suspect. Chases are dangerous as hell but man, the veldt brain really does react with THIS IS MOTHERFUCKING AWESOME. I was jacked up for hours. The only reason it didn't end with a full blown shootout at the end is because he got ejected from the car during a brutal wreck into a wall. He allegedly shot a guy named "Kenny". There were a shit ton of onlookers so it's probably best I resisted a powerful urge to kick him in the ribs and shout "Oh my god, you killed Kenny!"

|>


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:08 PM
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118

"You bastard."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:12 PM
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117: You bastards!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:12 PM
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118: You bastard!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:12 PM
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¡Ya basta!


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:14 PM
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Am I the only one with a little armchair envy of gswift's job? Office jobs would definitely be improved by a car chase/shootout a couple of times a year.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:16 PM
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122: No.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:18 PM
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122: You should wear camo today in honor of the police.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:18 PM
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124: I wear blue often to honor the police.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:22 PM
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122: I had the exact opposite reaction. But then, I am a wus.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:25 PM
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108: Is this not the case?

His sex writing is troublesome. It has to be put in perspective.

Nonetheless, he was a good writer, in fact a very good writer. The travel diary The Colossus of Maroussi is really quite good.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:25 PM
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On diabetes: yeah, unfortunately, type II is not limited to the stereotypical Immoral Fatty. I live in constant fear of it and anticipate pretty much giving up sugar and refined carbs entirely in a couple of years (I have a couple of weird risk factors, but obesity isn't one -- the genetic component is more worrying). My sister, otoh, who at various points has been twice my weight (and about my height) and eats tons of sweets, apparently has totally normal blood sugar even during pregnancy. It's really idiosyncratic.

On Anaïs Nin: it was a cheap shot, but a true story -- I really did go to the used bookstore after reading that line and exchange the book for a better one. I was 18. I have absolutely no doubt that parsimon was a more thoughtful, patient, circumspect and charitable 18-year-old than I was. But come on, it's a funny line. (Set of things impaled on masts: 1) dead frigatebird that fell out of the sky; 2) ham sandwich, stolen by rigger; 3) plastic bag from "American Beauty," once blown out to sea; 4) das Ewigweibliche.)


Posted by: lurid keyaki | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:25 PM
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I read Cancer and Capricorn all the way through, and I think some of Miller's non-fiction. I vaguely remember his time at a school in Cancer, and the messenger service in Capricorn. I never got the sex/gender stuff, but I usually don't. There was something new about the way Miller fictionalized his biography, or life as he was living it, that was historically important. I've read some Nin.

Hey, Nin fucked Miller a whole bunch, so he must have had something. I now picture him as Fred Ward anyway.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:28 PM
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I picture him as Fred Ward, too. And Remo Williams. And that astronaut who died.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:30 PM
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126: I am both a wuss and also envying gswift. If actually given the option of a more exciting job I probably wouldn't take it. Doesn't mean I can't still insincerely think that some danger and thrills would liven up the work day rather nicely.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:30 PM
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In general there should be more car chases/shootouts/attempted murders in this world, amirite?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:33 PM
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I now picture him as Fred Ward anyway.

Netflix has Tremors 2*, 3, and 4, but it does not have the original Tremors. Bastards.

* The only sequel with Fred Ward.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:34 PM
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I too know someone who developed Type 1 as an adult.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:34 PM
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131: This is roughly where I sit.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:36 PM
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A bunch of teenage boys had front row seats to it, they seemed pretty happy. There's a skate park like right in front of the crash and we'd been running lights and sirens so they had plenty of time to watch the approach, the PIT maneuver, and the resulting crash with a heavily tattooed guy getting thrown from the car and subsequently swarmed by cops with guns.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:39 PM
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127:Colossus that was the n-f I read. And some literary stuff, about Rimbaud?

I happen to think Miller is undervalued now, I suspect he was a massive influence on generations of writers, Roth, Irving...wait damn that hack!

As long as we are literary, Stirling Newberry has become active. This is a long 4-part generational analysis in which he criticizes DFW, Franzen, and Ellis, and then sums up their historical positions.

Big takeaway is that there has been only one Presidential Candidate (Edwards) that was born in the 50s. If we posit that true pure baby boomers are those born in the fifties, then boomers have been politically and culturally dominated by late-Silents (1945-50) and last-Boomers (1960-65) both of whose members really suck.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:40 PM
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And that astronaut who died.

Neil Armstrong? How quickly names fade from the public memory!


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:43 PM
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138: Gus Grissom! Sad face!


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:45 PM
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Now I have to look up who Fred Ward is.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:46 PM
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In Tremors, the main male characters are played by Fred Ward, Kevin Bacon, and the dad from "Family Ties."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:46 PM
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Which is to say, you've got to see it.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:47 PM
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Two days of weird hungriness and tiredness? Get a good night's sleep or two and see if it blows over.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:48 PM
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20-odd years ago I thought The Colossus of Maroussi was one of the best things ever. (Probably for the superficial reason that I read it just after spending the summer in one of the mere dozen or so places that gets the this-is-the-most-transplendent-spot-in-the-world! treatment in the book.) Not so long ago I was flipping through it again and jesus what a heap of exoticizing, indulgent crap. I am deeply embarassed for 20-year-old me.

I could never make my way through Durrell's serious fiction. But his Antrobus stories are an amusing diversion when you've run out of Wodehouse and can't justify another re-reading of Joy in the Morning quite yet.


Posted by: potchkeh | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:48 PM
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132: only if I'm the one doing the chasing/shooting.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:49 PM
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144: Gosh, okay.

As a sidebar, is anything ever good around here, or is it all just a case of ironic detachment and disaffection?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:55 PM
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141 to 146.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 12:58 PM
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I feel like Nin's sincerity pales in comparison to Kundera's sincerity.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:03 PM
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When did you all die inside?!

When Ogged left?


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:05 PM
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146: Sorry, any harshness in 144 was directed at myself, not at anyone else's opinion of the book. I just don't have a lot of patience for its brand of woo, and re-reading it not too long ago I was disappointed with myself for having been taken in by it in my youth.

Also, 144.last to 146.last.


Posted by: potchkeh | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:06 PM
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As a sidebar, is anything ever good around here, or is it all just a case of ironic detachment and disaffection?

The Recognitions, Springer's Progress, Riddley Walker, and The Third Policeman are all good, here and elsewhere.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:08 PM
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It's like I have to remember every little thing around here:

"Hey, look, guys! It's Fred Ward, years before Gus Grissom, Hoke Moseley, Remo Williams and Rocco DIllon, here playing Niccolo di Conti, a Venetian turned Florentine who explains how he faked his conversion to Islam in episode two of Rossellini's 1972's The Age of Medici. Ward's subsequent career would see him oddly toggling between gruff character roles and peculiar attempts at franchise-building (sure, we all remember Remo Williams: The Adventure Begins, but who among us can lay claim to first-hand knowledge of Timerider: The Adventures of Lyle Swann?) before settling into the gruff character roles and parodies thereof. Medici was his first film and it's kind of funny just how fey his characterization is (which I hope is reflected in the screen cap above); that's not really a quality too often associated with the fellow and his roles."


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:09 PM
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As a sidebar, is anything ever good around here, or is it all just a case of ironic detachment and disaffection?

Have you missed all the threads where someone asks for something to read and people recommend things?


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:10 PM
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Don't even talk to me about Milan Kundera! You might as well wonder what people think about Pynchon!

(Seriously, though, I'm off to political stuff. Romney, craven.)


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:10 PM
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All these unsigned comments are actually me.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:11 PM
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Gerry Durrell killed Laurence Durrell for me -- I loved My Family And Other Animals, but was subsequently unable to take anything written by Larry-the-character-in-MFAOA seriously. This is silly of me, but it means I've picked up the Alexandria Quartet and put it down again five or six times.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:11 PM
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Kundera really is unbearable. But don't worry, parsley, multiple unfogged persons have expressed a high opinion of Pynchon.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:11 PM
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Also I am given to understand that several people here have enjoyed Independent People.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:12 PM
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153: I wasn't clear. I liked Colossus of Maroussi. I wasn't asking for reading recommendations.

Off to the politics now.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:14 PM
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156 is me too. Probably time to try again.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:14 PM
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146: I really am now going to close the browser window and read some poetry, for what it's worth. While the answer to your question should be obvious, it should also be obvious that the best way out of the irony feedback loop is to seek out art in lieu of conversation. Ax for the frozen sea, top of one's head taken off, all those pressure-release metaphors.

It is true that my taste in literature overlaps with, as far as I can tell, that of almost no one here. I can imagine few things duller than complaining (or even talking) about it.

And now everyone else responded so never mind.


Posted by: lurid keyaki | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:15 PM
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Kundera really is unbearable.

Oh, it's on now.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:15 PM
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Don't even talk to me about Milan Kundera! You might as well wonder what people think about Pynchon!

I don't know how to interpret this. Surely you don't mean your opinion of Kundera and your opinion of Pynchon are in any way comparable?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:17 PM
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160: I feel less pathetically lowbrow. Or more supported in my pathetic lowbrowness.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:18 PM
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No man who names his daughter "Sappho" is readable.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:18 PM
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153: I wasn't clear. I liked Colossus of Maroussi. I wasn't asking for reading recommendations.

No one thinks you were asking for recommendations. The point of Blume's comment is that, since people make free with recommendations when recommendations are solicited, they must actually like things, and must not be limited to ironic detachment and disaffection.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:19 PM
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156: It's da-RRYL!


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:20 PM
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165: Oh sure. Who'd want to be named for the writer of the most beautiful lyric ever? I mean, you could go with Corinna, but that would be like naming your kid Bacchylides instead of Pindar.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:21 PM
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I shouldn't even.

Milan Kundera is the Dave Matthews of Slavic letters, a talented hack, certainly a hack who's paid his dues, but a hack nonetheless. And by his own admission, this is his worst book. If you strip off the exoticism of Brezhnev-era Czechoslovakia (this rinses off easily in soapy water), you are left with a book full of vapid characters bouncing against each other like little perfectly elastic balls of condensed ego. And every twenty pages the story steps outside for a cigarette so that the author can deliver a short philosophical homily.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:22 PM
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One simply has to ask which is the most beautiful lyric ever.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:22 PM
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Wait, I'll stay for this. What do you, Flippanter, as a man, make of the "why do chix love that hack Kundera" theme and its variations? Have you ever dated a Kundera skeptic? How did it play out?

168: less than 3!


Posted by: lurid keyaki | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:23 PM
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I do remember liking The Art of the Novel, but Nostalgia—ugh!


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:23 PM
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165: I had a cat whose nickname was Psappho. If your theory extends to disregarding all my comments (except I suppose this one) I'll understand.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:23 PM
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No man who names his daughter "Sappho" is readable.

This is why the works of Scamandronymus have not survived.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:24 PM
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Damn it, I think my credibility is now undermined.


Posted by: lurid keyaki | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:24 PM
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You know what I recommend? Jesus. The Fantagraphics Peanuts collections. A daily multivitamin and antioxidant. Hiking poles. They make a world of difference when one is ascending, descending or picking one's way across a creek. On level ground, they're sort of useless, but you can trip your friends with them when they make fun of your peeling sunburn. And of course when you're boulder-hopping you can just strap them to your pack.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:24 PM
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172: Ignorance, right? But I'm guessing you're not a bigger fan of Tarkovsky --


Posted by: lurid keyaki | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:25 PM
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No, they're still useful on level ground, especially if your pack is heavy, and you can use them while boulder-hopping as well.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:25 PM
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Also should you lose your sight you will retain the ability to detemine how far in front of you a specific point is.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:25 PM
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Also should you lose your sight you will retain the ability to detemine how far in front of you a specific point is.

At least once the pole has been incorporated into your schéma corporel.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:26 PM
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169 is perfect.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:28 PM
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Ignorance, right? But I'm guessing you're not a bigger fan of Tarkovsky --

Ha ha, quite, Ignorance, the book whose theme but not title is nostalgia.

I haven't seen Nostalghia, but I did like The Sacrifice.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:28 PM
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I do not think that was a precondition per the philosopher I am half-heartedly riffing off of, but will defer because all my faculties are consumed with ironic disaffection and uh the other thing.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:29 PM
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183 to distant 180.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:29 PM
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171: I dated a Kundera enthusiast. It ended badly, but not over Kundera. And don't even go all Danilo Kis on me. Now that is a dude whose "The Shins will change your life"-esque enthusiasts need to dial it down.

173: No, the name "Psappho" rules. I would applaud efforts to marry a Psappho off to a Taliaferro, Cholmondeley or Beauchamp.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:30 PM
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[E]specially if your pack is heavy.

[Flexes.]


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:31 PM
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At least once the pole has been incorporated into your schéma corporel.

Wrong thread?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:31 PM
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173 and 185.2 are both excellent.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:31 PM
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185.2 How about a Psmith?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:33 PM
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189: Arranged marriage has a new defender.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:35 PM
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Now that is a dude whose "The Shins will change your life"-esque enthusiasts need to dial it down.

I thought it was the Krasznahorkai enthusiasts annoying people now, but I really, really must recuse myself there, or I will become the thing parsimon hated.


Posted by: lurid keyaki | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:38 PM
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185.3 That's how SHE (the original, not necessarily the cat) spelled it, so I was just trying to be respectful. I guess I should see whether there are any photos of the year I went as Sappho to the neighborhood Halloween party on flickr for me to share. Absolutely no one guessed, which saddened me.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:38 PM
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Kundera's short stories and early novels are good. Starting with Laughter and Forgetting his writing gets flaky. I liked Unbearable Lightness OK, actually. Haven't seen the movie or read translations.

The linked rant in 169 cites a completely fucked translation of Hašek as being superior and also Ferdydurke, which is OK but certainly not great, interesting only from the aura given by the author's biography and his times. He misses Pelevin and Aksyonov also, either of whom is worth rereading in contrast to Shteyngart. Everyone gets to have an opinion and this one is engaging and well written, but off target.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:39 PM
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I thought it was the Krasznahorkai enthusiasts annoying people now

I admit that I liked The Melancholy of Resistance. It was recommended to me by someone known to us both, I think, and also by someone whom I very much doubt to be known to us both.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:42 PM
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Kis fandom is a thing? I like Kis and I've known a fair number of people who love him but every single one was a grad student in either ECE or Russian history. I didn't think many people outside that field had even heard of him.

Kundera hating is passe. To use the music analogy it's like hating on the Smiths or some other equivalent indy cred band from the eighties that every proto hipster freshman had to worship back in college. And in any case, The Book of Laughter and Forgetting is very good.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:43 PM
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I, too, love 169. Of course, I'm the philistine among my friends who likes neither Kundera nor Garcia Marquez.


Posted by: J, Robot | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:44 PM
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Possibly the British English translation of Lightness fails to do it justice. I found it content free and unpleasant.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:44 PM
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every single one was a grad student in either ECE or Russian history

I went through a Kis phase-- a Russian comp lit professor I had seem to turn a lot of people on to him.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:49 PM
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I remember liking the Book of Laughter and Forgetting and Unbearable Lightness of Being when I read them at age 19. But then it seemed like everyone with taste thought they were the most repugnant things ever, so.

I still kind of think of myself as literary although really I only watch TV or stick around this stupid site when I'm not working.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:50 PM
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vapid characters bouncing against each other like little perfectly elastic balls of condensed ego

unfortunately a fair amount of life really is like this.

At his best I think Henry Miller is a very good writer. Not really a great novelist in the Artist sense. But a good and importantt writer. He was certainly hugely influential. If he was once maybe overrated I think there's a tendency to underrate him now. George Orwell's critical essay on Miller is worth reading and gives a sense of what was significant about him at the time.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:51 PM
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what about Ariel Adorfman?


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:54 PM
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194: no "admissions" are necessary to me. I'm wholly of the annoying party. But there do seem to be annoyed parties too.

I still haven't read Kis, and maybe the time for that has passed. I love Hrabal, though. So there are two enthusiasms.


Posted by: lurid keyaki | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:54 PM
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193 I'll confess to being a Gombrowicz worshipper and to absolutely loving Ferdydurke, it's one of the funniest books I've ever read. Transatalyntyk and parts of the Diaries are also pretty awesome. His appeal isn't easily translatable since it depends so much on both playing with the Polish language and playing off various different prose styles from different eras, but the most recent Ferdydurke and TA translations did a better job in rendering his style than I would have thought possible. My biggest issue with him is the difficulty most later Polish prose writers seem to have from freeing themselves from his influence.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:54 PM
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I remember liking the Book of Laughter and Forgetting and Unbearable Lightness of Being when I read them at age 19. But then it seemed like everyone with taste thought they were the most repugnant things ever, so.

That's about how old I was when I read and liked them, too. I tried other ones, but either they weren't as good or there's a hard two-book Kundera limit before it all seems repetitive, even to a 19-year-old. But then when I revisited Book of Laughter and Forgetting in my late 20s I found it somewhere between meh and repugnant.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 1:59 PM
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I don't think there was a single moment after age 10 or so when I liked books of optimism and whimsy and romance. Unless "Sophie's World" counts.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 2:01 PM
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Btw lw, what language did you read Ferdydurke in, Czech or English?


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 2:08 PM
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I don't read Kundera; I prefer Kundera criticism. That way you learn that Kunder's isn't worth reading.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 2:09 PM
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Kundera, not Kunder's. I don't know what's going on with my typing lately, as I'm making mistakes that aren't even plausibly keys-next-to-each-other typos.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 2:10 PM
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206. Czech, postcommunist translation. I can see where it's a book that rewards attention, but it didn't light up for me. I got the same feeling I do with early Nabokov, where the book is a reaction to a previous tradition, seemed to me too close to hearing one voice in a conversation.

Sometimes that style really works, other times it falls flat for me. I don't care for Jarry either for instance, neither say TC Boyle's stories where he's showing off.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 2:23 PM
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lw: Out of curiosity, what's your feeling about Hrabal? I've only read Too Loud a Solitude, which I thought was pretty terrific.


Posted by: clark diversey | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 4:11 PM
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I don't read Kundera; I prefer Kundera criticism.

This made me chuckle. I am not familiar with this Kis of whom you all speak.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 7:04 PM
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I like Hrabal a lot, experimental, I think not easy to translate, an idiosyncratic pleasure if it's your taste. I Served the English King is nice. I guess I have a hard time seeing Solitude as literature, it's another book very closely tied to biography and circumstances.

I like Jachym Topol a lot. Michal Viewegh is breezy, writes in a hurry for profit, popular, occasionally insightful, puts out a book a year or so.

Clark Ave is one of the few streets in Chicago that was a trail before European settlement.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 09-12-12 8:32 PM
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lw, if you're still reading, I read Omon Ra years and years ago but haven't picked up any Pelevin since. Do you have a particularly recommended later novel of his?


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 09-13-12 6:11 PM
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I read Werewolf Problem in English, short stories, liked those a lot, and then Generation P in Czech, which I liked a lot also. I mention the language only because a) there's some joking around with borrowings from English and included blocks of english and b) some translations are feeble , I usually check translation reviews for books worth attention, don't know about this one. The werewolf stories read nicely, if it's the same translator, no reservations.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 09-13-12 7:45 PM
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107: I have an extremely psychotic client who maintains that her diabetes is Type III and requires that she eat adequate amounts of sugar (refined stuff). Her numbers are pretty good, because she's willing to use insulin.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 09-14-12 8:59 AM
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199: I read this site, I read unbearable treatment plan prose and documents about Medicaid. My brain is rotting.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 09-14-12 9:20 AM
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May I suggest a cripplingly dull satirical dystopia with futuristic cricket? It's public domain.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-14-12 9:22 AM
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