Re: Neat Science

1

So, is it possible that my mother did get allergies from me, as she has always claimed?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 09-27-12 11:43 AM
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Offspring-vectored DNA exchanged may be why old couples end up looking like each other.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 09-27-12 11:51 AM
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And why do we end up looking like our pets?!?


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 09-27-12 11:53 AM
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Oh, wait, DNA in cells in saliva, fine.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 09-27-12 11:53 AM
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5

I love these stories, because they feel like a way my stillborn son is still with me.


Posted by: anon for this one | Link to this comment | 09-27-12 11:58 AM
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My mom got a broken foot from me and my sister. I forgot my book bag so she had to run down the stairs and my sister was stealing calcium from mom's foot bone.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-27-12 11:59 AM
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3: My dog does lick me an awful lot. That probably explains why I've been feeling so pretty lately!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 09-27-12 12:00 PM
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6 before seeing 5. I'm sorry to hear about your loss.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-27-12 12:01 PM
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5: I'm sorry. That's really sad.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-27-12 12:03 PM
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10

Oh, I'm sorry, anon f.t.o.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 09-27-12 2:21 PM
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So sorry, anon of #5.


Posted by: Ile | Link to this comment | 09-27-12 4:08 PM
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5: I'm so sorry, that is terribly sad. I can only imagine how devastated I would feel.

I do find it interesting that my children's DNA are still inside me floating around. my cousin has a lot of immune system problems related to mine and hers all went away after her first pregnancy. overcoming her body's immune system's resistance to the fetus re-set something inside her and she's been fine ever since.


Posted by: alameida | Link to this comment | 09-28-12 12:34 AM
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12 is another irritating thing for people to suggest next time you're sick. "Did you try getting pregnant? Because that can re-set your immune system and... oh, you already did that, huh? Maybe try it again? I'm free for the next half hour or so."


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 09-28-12 1:57 AM
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14

Hey baby, want some foreign antigens to help downregulate your autoimmune response?


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 09-28-12 4:25 AM
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"What's your view on the hygiene hypothesis as an explanation for autoimmune disorders? Sounds reasonable, right? So, up for getting a bit dirty?"


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 09-28-12 6:42 AM
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I didn't mean to kill this thread. Like I said in the Lullaby thread, I am mostly OK now and this exact topic is one I enjoy thinking about.


Posted by: Anon for this one | Link to this comment | 09-28-12 7:04 AM
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||

Well then, let me do a bleg that doesn't seem front-page-worthy. Last night, Jammies wrote Hawaii's name for Hawaii to trace. She had a complete and utter perfectionist meltdown - "I can't do it, I'll never be able to do it, etc." Seriously upset.

Half of it is just that three year olds melt down all the time. But half of me is wondering what on earth I hatched - that is so opposite of me. (I was all "COME PRAISE ME FOR THIS HALF-ASSED SQUIGGLE!")

How do you get a very young perfectionist to chill out and accept that some things take a lot of practice? Without getting them down the procrastinate-out-of-perfectionism path?

|>


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-28-12 9:46 AM
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I don't have good advice on what to do about it, but Sally was like that (to the point that I sort of worried that she'd never learn how to do anything remotely difficult because she wouldn't be able to handle not knowing how to do it already). Um, she got better?

I think what I tried to do was not over-praise -- that is, if she thought her efforts sucked, agree that she was correctly perceiving that she hadn't done whatever it was perfectly, and keep hammering on 'no one starts out knowing how to do anything, you learn how to do things well by working at them. You're right that what you're doing now is imperfect, but if you work at it you'll get as good as you want to be.'

But I have no idea if I did any good. I think she mostly just grew out of it.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-28-12 9:55 AM
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(That approach was driven, on my part, by remembering being furious, as a child, with praise for anything that objectively wasn't that impressive.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-28-12 9:56 AM
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17: Help her to decompose hard problems into a collection of simple ones. That way she can gain confidence at accomplishing simpler constituent tasks before putting it all together. In the case of writing her name, start with a single letter. By fortuitous coincidence, the first letter of her name is not terribly hard for a child with limited fine motor skills to render. Work on that until she has confident mastery, then move to the next letter.


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 09-28-12 10:00 AM
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I wasn't furious with undeserved praise, but it has left me with a complete inability to accept praise as an adult. When I recieve compliments I habitually assume people are just being nice.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 09-28-12 10:02 AM
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Her name isn't actually Hawaiian Punch.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-28-12 10:02 AM
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18/19: all the pop psychology books say to praise the effort, not the result, and never the talent: "I can see you worked very hard on this. You should be proud of yourself for working so hard on this." Not "It's perfect!", and never "It's perfect, you're so smart!"


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 09-28-12 10:03 AM
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23: Oh yeah. In the moment, I forgot about that whole push.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-28-12 10:04 AM
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22: Ha ha. If I'm not mistaken about her real first name, the first letter is easier than "H".


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 09-28-12 10:04 AM
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I'm so good at just keeping trying to be a good parent!


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-28-12 10:04 AM
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Maybe you could convince her that it's spelled with only easy letters. Once she masters that, then you reveal your trick.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 09-28-12 10:05 AM
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That too, but also kind of validating her judgment. I think that kind of kid-perfectionism is partially about a kid with a good eye for seeing that her scrawls really don't look like Daddy's model yet, and it's reassuring having an adult communicate that she's right about that.

Ira Glass said something really clever about creative work that sort of goes to the same point:

Nobody tells this to people who are beginners, I wish someone told me. All of us who do creative work, we get into it because we have good taste. But there is this gap. For the first couple years you make stuff, it's just not that good. It's trying to be good, it has potential, but it's not. But your taste, the thing that got you into the game, is still killer. And your taste is why your work disappoints you. A lot of people never get past this phase, they quit. Most people I know who do interesting, creative work went through years of this. We know our work doesn't have this special thing that we want it to have. We all go through this. And if you are just starting out or you are still in this phase, you gotta know its normal and the most important thing you can do is do a lot of work. Put yourself on a deadline so that every week you will finish one story. It is only by going through a volume of work that you will close that gap, and your work will be as good as your ambitions. And I took longer to figure out how to do this than anyone I've ever met. It's gonna take awhile. It's normal to take awhile. You've just gotta fight your way through.

Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-28-12 10:11 AM
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I see what you're trying to say, but you're not quite there yet. Keep working at it.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-28-12 10:14 AM
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30

But great effort.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-28-12 10:14 AM
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31

Every time she traces out of the lines, she does 10 push ups. That'll teach her to trace.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 09-28-12 10:25 AM
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(Kidding, of course. I do appreciate the advice.)


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-28-12 10:28 AM
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Surely you can come up with a better system than that (if you try really hard...) I'm thinking conductive ink for the lines, a metal pen, and somewhere around 9 volts...


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 09-28-12 12:21 PM
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17: Mara used to have furious perfectionism. She basically chose some tasks that she taught herself to fail in ridiculous ways (like choosing the silly option on the Super Why game when she knows the right one) and trained herself through that to be better about doing things that are hard for her. She still melts down in the last 5 minutes of ballet class because it gets to just be too much. You could probably get her to play along with how much fun silly failure can be ("Does this sock go on your nose so you look like an elephant? on your elbow?" You probably already do that.) and see if that helps at all.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 09-28-12 12:52 PM
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You could probably get her to play along with how much fun silly failure can be

Try as I might, I can't my boss to see things this way.


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 09-29-12 4:19 AM
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I just had a really involved dream about a statistics book. That can't be good, can it?

|>


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-29-12 4:57 AM
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37

Odds are against it.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-29-12 5:02 AM
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38

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Anyone at Maker Faire in NY today, I'm teaching crocheting again from ten to two.

|>


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 09-29-12 5:04 AM
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39

Tell ladyada I say hi if you meet her this time.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-29-12 5:05 AM
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40

Maybe it is a charitable reading, but Carla's take was similar to mine. This is the key point: "I mean, if you are together and can live with illness, do that because it is awesome and you'd hope to get that returned for you."

If jms has an awesome relationship with the guy -- not problem-free but full of mutual respect, affection, and enjoyment -- and he has a mental illness, go ahead, albeit with your eyes open and with the expectation that he'll also support you.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 09-29-12 5:17 AM
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40.1 to 35.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 09-29-12 5:20 AM
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Speaking of neat science, I've just found out that Mark Abrahams is in the UK for the next week doing the rounds. I doubt I'll be able to make any of the events, alas, as I'm moving flat, but he's doing a show in Edinburgh on Tuesday (with Richard Wiseman among others) and in Oxford on Friday (with a bunch of mathematicians) which other Unfoggeders may wish to attend.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 09-30-12 1:47 PM
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