Re: Parents of the Year

1

Like, no background music or anything. Just repeating that phrase over and over and over and over.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:14 AM
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So what's an inniya?


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:22 AM
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Twenty dollars, same as in town.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:23 AM
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I said something like "She's from South Africa" by way of non-answer within noisy chaotic situation.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:29 AM
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I love their song "I Fink U Freaky." It's so much fun to run to.


Posted by: LizSpigot | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:31 AM
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And I like you a lot!


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:32 AM
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Is that so much different from a night at home with you guys?


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:53 AM
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Well, if Hawaiian Punch already understands "fuck", "inniya" isn't much of a challenge.


Posted by: Awl | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:56 AM
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Did Ninja do that thing where he has a microphone in a big foam dick that he pulls out of his pants?


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:15 AM
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Ugh.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:18 AM
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Do musical acts have to steal everything from kiddie birthday clown acts?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:18 AM
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I continue not to get Die Antwoord.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:27 AM
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A friend posted on fb that her kid (not sure what age, all look same to me) had asked her what "sexy" meant. I told her she should just feign ignorance, but I like the non sequitur approach, too. I didn't know that was allowed.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:29 AM
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"It means that someone is pretty in a grown up way that is not appropriate for kids."


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:33 AM
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"It means someone is pretty and it is 1977."


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:34 AM
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A South African coworker laughed and said "Vanilla Ice, maybe Eminem" when I asked him what Afrikaaners thought of them.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:34 AM
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12 is right.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:36 AM
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12 -- I'm still struggling with Die Vraag.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:37 AM
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I am sincerely curious as to how this night on the town was different from a typical night at home.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:38 AM
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12, 17. I thought they were quite entertaining at first, but I can see how they might have worn out their welcome. A bit of a one trick pony.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:38 AM
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You have a strange haggadah and you're half a year early.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:40 AM
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21 to 19.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:40 AM
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chris, do you think you could put that in a haiku for us? I might find that entertaining.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:40 AM
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This blog is so much fun!


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:48 AM
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Once he drew crowds. The
worn-out pony eats his hay.
fuck yinnias, clown.


Posted by: Awl | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:50 AM
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This blog is so much fun!

Dude. Sorry your life sucks so much that you are forced to hang out on a website with people you find boring and sucky.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:53 AM
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Why are you talking nonsense, Blume? I love everyone here.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:56 AM
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Kisses to text.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:57 AM
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No, I said that if Chris wrote a haiku, I might find it amusing. Awl, if you want to be amusing, you might go find me a good link or something.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:58 AM
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No offense Awl, he really loves you.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:58 AM
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Just because I love you doesn't mean I don't want you to use your gifts appropriately.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 8:01 AM
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good link, barfly caricatures


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 8:05 AM
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33

Die Antwoord may be adept at systematizing the otherizing of racialized and genderized identitized discourses, but they still suck and are both stupid and unlistenable.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 8:05 AM
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I don't get Die Antwoord or 32 at all.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 8:08 AM
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Finally, a wise, benevolent text that will help me use my gifts appropriately!
here you go, text.


Posted by: Awl | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 8:08 AM
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Thanks! That was excellent work, Awl.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 8:12 AM
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32 is pretty cool, but seems unrelated to the topic.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 8:14 AM
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Spot the commenter in 32.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 8:19 AM
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39

My kid told me I was a "sexy ballerina", just before his You Tube access got cut off.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 8:19 AM
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I hate my hipster parents. Why can't I just be Elmo?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 8:47 AM
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I wonder how they got the little girl to sit still for monobrow application.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 8:50 AM
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Sort of on the topic, I just met Nia's mother at the team meeting prior to an upcoming 6-month court date. I like her a lot and see a lot of Nia in her, plus she used "infer" correctly. But it's also going to be a long and painful slog for her to do all the things she'll have to do to get Nia back and it seems like she might not have patience for much of that. Tonight they'll talk on the phone for the first time in 6+ months and I know it's going to be incredibly hard on both of them and me, as the phone call supervisor and person who has to then soothe Nia and get her to bed. So much of this foster parenting thing sucks.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 8:56 AM
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I just spent Saturday afternoon playing with three of my niece's mother-in-law's foster kids, and thought of you because of it. (Thank god for kids who need to be amused at big parties of other people's families who I mostly don't know -- this was to celebrate my niece coming back from boot camp, but it was mostly her in-laws and her local friends, rather than anyone I'd met before. I slunk outside with with the kids and a dog and we all played soccer until they got tired and needed to show me rocks under which snakes had been in the recent past.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 9:00 AM
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Next they showed you which closets had the snakes in them right at that moment.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 9:12 AM
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So much of this foster parenting thing sucks.

For me, the big selling point of religion is that it gives you some ready-made dialog for situations in which something ought to be said, but it's difficult to know exactly what to say.

Here, I find myself wanting to express consolation and encouragement. So I will say: "Good luck, Thorn, I hope it all comes out okay. I really admire your willingness and ability to help out people who need so much help."

And that's okay, I guess, but wouldn't it be nicer to say, "God loves you, Thorn; He'll be watching over you and guiding you in this difficult situation. Your work has earned you many times over the bliss of heaven."

Atheist cynics say that religious folks fear death, and need a narrative to supply some consolation. What I fear is funerals, but my need for a good narrative is identical.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 9:20 AM
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46

You used to engage more effectively, text. Everything okay?


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 9:20 AM
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45: I don't know if religion would help, though I suppose then I'd think think it would all work out all right eventually. It's just not clear what IS right. Probably it would be best for her to stay with us permanently and visit with her mom long-term, although that would be (at least initially) devastating to her mom. But it's not about "best" but about what's whether her mom can minimally meet her needs, and I'd like to think she could but it would be precarious for a while at least and we all know she's not being honest about some things she'll need to be honest about.

Nia wants to go back home, but she also wants to stay with us and have visits with her mom. Lee is nervous about committing to an adoption, but she'll do it if we get to next summer and the state files to terminate Nia's parents' rights. I think it would be extremely hard for Mara and Nia to separate, but that has no bearing on any decisions that get made. Just someone hurts no matter what the outcome is, and people are hurting already.

I am just glad that I liked her mom and we made a good connection. Our worker liked her too. I'm not minimizing the problems she has, but I do believe the scary warnings we got from people only tangentially connected to the case (former foster mom and Nia's Court-Appointed Special Advocate) had as much to do with discomfort about black people who live in poverty as with specific concerns about her. That might change if her rights are terminated, but for now I'm not worried about anyone's safety in having contact with her, which is good since I don't have much choice about that bit.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 9:30 AM
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Di, you misspelled "be much less of an asshole".


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 9:32 AM
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45 really resonates with me. I am attending religious services these days partially because I am looking for an empowering narrative about this world that doesn't contradict obvious facts about it.

How about this: Good luck Thorn, your love will beget love.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 9:45 AM
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I don't know if religion would help, though I suppose then I'd think think it would all work out all right eventually.

I maybe do religion wrong, but fwiw, it doesn't work that way for me. For me, faith isn't really a promise that it will be awesome or part of God's plan or whatever. It's more just feeling that reassurance that, even if everything sucks, at least I am trying to live by the values I hold dear. Which I think holds just as well for you even without religion. You do what you do because it's who you are. And what is best for Nia down the road is something you can maybe answer down the road. What's right for her in the now is what you are doing now.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 9:54 AM
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Parent of the Year? Yea, please nominate me.

My kid kept trying to masturbate at the football stadium after the game was over, and, then, got pissed off and hit me nonstop for 45 mins. She should have been a boxer.


Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 9:54 AM
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Or, what Rob said more concisely and powerfully.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 9:55 AM
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53

A God that does not favor Thorn in every way available to Him, Her, or It ought to be fired.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 9:56 AM
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Oh, I'm not actually worried about what the long-term situation is going to be and I think I have peace with it as well as I can. So much of it is out of my hands. I can only do as much as I can and I know that. I wish I could have done more or better with Val in particular, but other than that I have no regrets about my own behavior and I know I've had a net positive impact on the kids I've dealt with, which is really the only meaningful goal.

I do hate people who say "everything happens for a reason" meaning that Mara or Nia came to us rather than someone else, because it kind of implies that it's good that bad stuff happened to them first, which would be a sucky kind of God. But the sort of people who say that sort of thing don't think it through. I mean, I'm assuming they don't and they're not just pro-torturing kids to get them into foster/adoptive homes.

Will totally gets my vote for parent of the year. I feel so lucky I've only had to deal with a little bit of violence from kids and only from very little kids. I think that would be very, very hard to manage.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 10:00 AM
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I second Carp's 53.


Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 10:01 AM
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If only religion were reassuring to me, as I understand it is for a lot of people, instead of offensive mixed with dull. It's such an easy way to find community, and that is a good thing, but I will never go to a religious service happily.

Atheist cynics say that religious folks fear death, and need a narrative to supply some consolation.

Atheist cynics say that we all fear death, and that one of the major things people get out of religion is some consolation, if I may make us sound a bit less like assholes.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 10:06 AM
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(Not that there aren't already a myriad of reasons that God -- if He She or It exists at all -- ought to be summarily fired.)


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 10:07 AM
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I will never go to a religious service happily.

You're Jewish! This is as it should be!


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 10:23 AM
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Can you draw leviathan out with a hook?


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 10:25 AM
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Spot the commenter in 32.

which one are you lw? I was guessing the one about holding your beer.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 10:34 AM
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You used to engage more effectively, text. Everything okay?

I don't get it. You tell them you love them and they act all insulted.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 10:37 AM
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I can draw Leviathan with a pen!


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 10:38 AM
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To answer your question, though, Di, I'm doing pretty good. My sister visited this weekend and we had a grand old time. I'm half-way through editing this book I've been working on forever and I think it's actually coming together this time. I've had some interesting employment relationships which may lead to something bigger down the road. And my little boy is starting to sleep a little better at night. How are you?


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 10:45 AM
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maybe you ought to draw him then, rob chalk. I have a literary type question for you. Is it rude to ask?


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 10:47 AM
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When I was about five the following discussion occurred:

PGD: Mommy, what is 'rape'?

PGD's mom: it's when a man does bad things to a woman that she didn't want.

PGD: OK.

[An hour later] PGD: Mommy, what is 'rape'?

PGD's mom: repeats explanation

PGD: That's what I thought. I'm going to tell Jeff he's wrong!

PGD's mom: Why, what did Jeff say rape is?

PGD: He said it's when a man grabs a woman, throws her on the bed, and fucks her!


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 11:22 AM
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I field all questions, but I actually teach philosophy, not literature per se.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 11:23 AM
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I'll make it a philosophy question. Do you think someone could conceivably sleep with you and use you at the same time? She would be "using you" in the sense of "taking advantage of you."

I was going to ask for examples from literature but let's tackle it conceptually.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 11:29 AM
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I actually think there's a lot more to fear than just death and that almost all of us need narratives. I also don't want anyone to think I was implying I was up for parent of the year, even ironically. I just meant that probably Nia's mom isn't since she hasn't seen her child for 6 months. I'm really happy that she loves Nia and wants to be involved in her life, however things go from here. (On that front, Lee just invited Mara's dad to M's birthday party in a few weeks, the first time either parent will have been invited to our house. I think that's a good thing.)


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 11:49 AM
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Very little of religion IME is about death or alleviating the fear of death or about what happens after you die. Even doctrinally, both the old and new testaments are nearly completely silent on this topic, while spending a lot of time on other things, and as a practical matter I don't think I've heard a single sermon on the issue (other than one where the message is: "we don't know."). Obviously there are plenty of churches that are happy to tell you that you will go to heaven if you follow plan xyz, but that hasn't been my experience even a tiny little bit, and it certainly isn't a necessary part of even quite traditional religion.

And now, having broken it, I am going back to my "never discuss religion on the internet" rule.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 11:57 AM
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I don't think I've heard a single sermon on the issue (other than one where the message is: "we don't know.").

Very different religious experience than the one I grew up with, where there was lots of talk about heaven and hell. I think it's also a topic lots of religious people are pretty interested in, given the popularity of books like Heaven is for Real, for instance.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 12:06 PM
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Oh sure, I'm not arguing with 70. I just feel sometimes like speaking up for the "liberal* religion: It exists"* camp, which I feel doesn't get a lot of airtime on the internet.

*"liberal" as a shorthand for things that might be remotely appealing to people here, not as in "liberal" theology.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 12:09 PM
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Die Antwoord remind me of a South African Insane Clown Posse except with a modicum of talent*. That they have a bizarre anti-circumcision Zulu rap anthem to their credit earns them legit rock and roll hall of fame points all on its own. That said, I enjoy them much more as an idea than actually as music to listen or dance to.

(* I love the balls-to-the-wall-ness of Yo-Landi in particular, who will probably still have a career if the group as a whole eventually craps out. The lead singer dud I can take or leave... but he'd have to fall a long way yet to be comparable to Vanilla Ice. Who was the worst. Ever.)


Posted by: Lord Castock | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 1:02 PM
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So your kids are mature enough to hear Die Antwoord shout "Fuck you in the ass", but we your devoted readers aren't mature enough to read a post about it without clicking "read more"? Christ, what do you think of us, heebie?


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 1:05 PM
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I basically agree entirely with 72, but they've got so much freaking energy that they're super fun in concert.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 1:11 PM
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73: I was actually wondering if net-nannies would purge based on the front page. Might net-nannies be better parents than I am?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 1:11 PM
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For a sane and pretty much unillusioned take on Christianity from the inside, try Francis Spufford's book Unapologetic, which seems to have launched a flame war over at CT. I loved it. My (christian) wife couldn't see why. But I find that however much I like and admire individual Christians, and no matter how well I can speak their language, when it comes to the bit in church where they confess their faith, I think "but I DON'T believe".


Posted by: Nworb Werdna | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 1:14 PM
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which seems to have launched a flame war over at CT

A remarkable accomplishment, to be sure.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 1:15 PM
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78

72. WIkipedia to the rescue: In May 2000, Van Winkle wrestled in a match promoted by Juggalo Championship Wrestling, then known as Juggalo Championshit Wrestling, filling in for Insane Clown Posse member Joseph Utsler, who had been injured during a match.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 1:18 PM
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heebie, how was the concert night different from any other of your nights?


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 1:50 PM
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80

lw, do you want to try 78 over again? Try writing out your thoughts on a different page first or something.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 1:55 PM
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I already ignored the versions of 79 above, text.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 2:07 PM
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82

Although I might have said "We reclined on comfy pillows and dipped our vegetables twice."


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 2:14 PM
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83

Thank you for responding, but again, I wanted to know how it was different from every other night of your adult life.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 2:17 PM
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84

What are you talking about? Are you trying to make some sort of Passover seder joke?


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 2:20 PM
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85

Seder? I already ate. Thanks though, if you'd told me ahead of time I'd have certainly attended.

Sorry for that. I don't know any good passover seder jokes.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 2:25 PM
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86

I get it, you're drunk or stoned or something.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 2:32 PM
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84: Yes? Or, I might have.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 2:34 PM
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Heaven is for Real

A big billboard with "HELL IS REAL" is posted at some farm on the side of the road as you drive into Gary, IN from Chicago. It always seems so fitting.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 2:35 PM
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Text, seriously, what is up? You've got a lot of history around here, for almost all of which you've interacted with people like a normal, sane, human being. Since you've been around again for the last few days, you've been sounding like a cross between a toned-down version of the Troll of Sorrow and a chatbot.

It's really disturbing, not so much because the weirdness level is intolerable in itself -- the same comments coming from a new pseud would be a little irritating but nothing big -- but it's very strange having someone who usually talks like people being like that.

I'd like you to quit it, and go back to normal. Is there anything I can say or do to make that happen? Can you tell us what's going on, or what the problem is?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 2:37 PM
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I've sort of been wondering if someone else has hijacked text's pseud.


Posted by: Lord Castock | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 2:42 PM
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69: That's mostly true. On the other hand, it is a major theme of the the earliest piece of Christian literature we have (Paul's first letter to the Thessalonians).


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 2:44 PM
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I don't understand you guys. I come back for awhile, tell you all how much I love you and this is the thanks I get?

Do you not remember how surly I always was? Don't you people read the archives anymore?


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 2:45 PM
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LB, I don't think I ever talked to you like people. Sorry. Should we play the greatest hits?

Lord Castock, I seriously have never read one of your comments before. Sorry to have offended. I am touched at your concern for my welfare.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 2:50 PM
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I, as might be expected, love the new text, enjoying his comments as some kind of artwork-in-progress. Engaging the crowd in a very disturbing but unassailable manner, revealing by repeating the kitsch as a funhouse mirror, sarcasm that may not be called because the irony and insincerity is nearly invisible...now that's some fine trolling.

80 and 85 were good, 79 was too direct and challenging.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 2:50 PM
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You were always surly, but, you know, coherent. I bow to none in my near total recall of the archives, and honestly, I don't remember you sounding much at all like this before. If you're okay and just in a weird mood, go ahead and people will snap at you when you annoy them, no harm done. But you're worrying me.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 2:53 PM
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93: I seriously have never read one of your comments before.

My God, the poor bastard's entirely lost his mind. I think we'd better get an ambulance over there.


Posted by: Lord Castock | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 3:02 PM
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LizardBreath, I have actually commented drunk here and I'm sure I've sounded much worse than this. Today I have a mild sore throat. Thanks though, as I recall, mostly we ignore each other.

Bob I love you as much as always.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 3:02 PM
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Okay, go on about your business. Certainly there's never been any requirement that anyone make sense around here.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 3:06 PM
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89: I was assuming the elliptical dickishness was an attempt to start fights borne of poor recent personal circumstances. (Been there!) But who knows.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 3:07 PM
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100

That's an option?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 3:09 PM
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101

Elliptical dickishness? I have to admit that I've never seen one I'd call elliptical exactly.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 3:11 PM
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102

I assumed everybody went to Crooked Timber for that.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 3:14 PM
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103

101: some of the dopey "YOU'RE NOT OGGED, HEEBIE" stuff has been pretty obscure, I think.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 3:14 PM
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Unfogged has always been about being a dick to each other. And I have never been more clear than I am today.

But enough about me. What does unfogged mean to all of you?


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 3:16 PM
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COCKFARTS


Posted by: OPINIONATED GRANDMA | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 3:19 PM
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I think heebie apes ogged's voice pretty well, actually.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 3:19 PM
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Opinionated Grandma, you are as always my favorite.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 3:20 PM
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asked her what "sexy" meant

"It means someone is pretty and it is 1977."

You betray your youth, Smearcase. In 1977 the girl with the feathered hair and short shorts was "foxy." The boy with the feathered hair and short shorts was "Shaun Cassidy."


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 3:20 PM
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text, are you text with a mustache?


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 3:25 PM
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fake accent you made me smile! No, I'm text with new glasses.

text with a moustache, or txet, was last seen exiting a law firm in downtown los angeles.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 3:33 PM
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Never trust a man without a mustache.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 3:37 PM
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I used to have one here on my desk but the missus threw it away.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 3:41 PM
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As to whether or not Christians are literally focused on the afterlife, you've just got to subdivide Christians, because most of the conservative ones totally are. To wit, FB status from a student today:

I don't know what I'd do if I had to live for just what this life has to offer. Thank you, Lord, that I have something to look forward to!


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 3:52 PM
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I have always depended on the dickishness of strangers.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:04 PM
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I on the strangishness of dicks.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:06 PM
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And I on ol' angry Dick Strange.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:08 PM
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Don't strangle dicks in Depends.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:10 PM
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Depends, Oklahoma?


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:28 PM
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I SHOT A MAN IN DEPENDS

JUST TO SEE HIM DRY


Posted by: OPINIONATED GRANDMA | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:29 PM
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Closeted in New York?


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:30 PM
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Sifu, you've depended on a lot, but I don't think it's working out today. OG, we're breaking up forever.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:33 PM
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I have actually worn depends at a mall in Durham, NC, nothing else. I ordered a yogurt and they gave it to me.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:34 PM
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In my experience, there is no finer place to urinate on yourself than Durham.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:41 PM
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Definitely a step up from Disney World, anyhow.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:42 PM
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The nice mall by 54 or the shitty mall?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:42 PM
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I just tried to figure out how many states I've urinated on myself in. I think I will leave off completing that exercise.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:43 PM
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the shitty mall

Not specific enough.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:43 PM
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I think it was the shitty mall. I didn't actually pee in them though.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:44 PM
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That's the problem with you people: all theory, no praxis.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:45 PM
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I swam in a wetsuit for the first time this weekend. I have to imagine that's a little bit like peeing in adult diapers, right?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:48 PM
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I thought about peeing in the wetsuit, but didn't. Apo, you'll be the first to know when that happens.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:48 PM
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I can't pee except in toilets unless I'm drunk. This has caused relationship issues.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:49 PM
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I swam in a wetsuit after not having done so in quite awhile. I've never peed in one. They say it's very difficult, as a matter of anatomy.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:52 PM
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Do you not remember how surly I always was?

What people are noticing is not surliness. It's dickishness. Have you got a link to the archives demonstrating your previous dickishness? I think this is new.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:53 PM
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I believe there is actually a not-very-funny joke along the lines of "There are two types of SCUBA divers - those who pee in their wetsuits and those who lie about it."


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:54 PM
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127: It's been ten years. I only remember the old one and the new one.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:56 PM
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How can SFT not have swum in a wetsuit before? Who hasn't swum in a wetsuit?


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:57 PM
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People who don't live in California or Florida?


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 4:59 PM
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I've never worn a wetsuit.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:01 PM
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Who hasn't swum in a wetsuit?

Me. So how does that work? Do you own your own wetsuit? Borrow one from a friend? Rent one?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:01 PM
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heebie, do you know any more unfunny jokes?


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:02 PM
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borrowing one from a friend is never a good idea. who knows where he's been keeping it?


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:02 PM
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135: At Emily Yoffe's advice column, I didn't find the question posed by "Peeing Tom" to be particularly shocking, but I was genuinely surprised by Yoffe's answer: peeing in the shower is normal behavior, and people who object to it are a bit ridiculous.

I have absolutely no desire to find out what you people are up to in swimmig pools.

No, really. I don't want to know. Don't tell me.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:03 PM
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I've never worn a wetsuit either.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:04 PM
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Oh I've changed, I've changed. I change by not changing at all, my political oblong thing or whoever you are.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:04 PM
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back when I was in the practice of buying lots of wetsuits and never using them, a friend of mine who was going swimming more regularly than me needed to borrow one. The one I gave him was an extra thick wetsuit! And he had a very bad, long swim in it. Afterwards he though I must be smaller than I actually am.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:05 PM
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OK, not everyone, but I would imagine like 99.6% of people who are into expensive road bikes have swum in a wetsuit more than once.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:06 PM
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back when I was in the practice of buying lots of wetsuits and never using them

This made me laugh.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:08 PM
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Surfing
Scuba
Snorkeling
Water skiing
Kayaking
Spearfishing
Ocean swimming/triathalon

I guess that's it. I feel like there are more needs for wetsuits, but maybe not. Still, I think that picks up 99.6% of expensive road bike enthusiasts, at least for one try.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:09 PM
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I guess windsurfing, though that's arguably a subset of surfing.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:10 PM
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Robert Halford, are you wearing one of those super thick wetsuits?


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:13 PM
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Of the seven things listed in 149, the two that are done outside of California and Florida (water skiing and kayaking) do not require wetsuits.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:15 PM
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I've gone snorkeling, but I didn't need a wetsuit for it. Ditto water skiing. Also kayaking. (That last is actually a lie; I've haven't been kayaking, but only because I had a canoe and just never got around to it. Nobody else I know who's gone kayaking used a wetsuit.)

The only people I know who have wetsuits are scuba divers, obviously, and windsurfers.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:15 PM
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I never heard of a wetsuit for water skiing.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:16 PM
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Well obviously you didn't really go snorkeling if there was no wetsuit involved.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:16 PM
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parsimon, either all your friends are in long term relationships or you know some very risky people.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:17 PM
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144: What about *two* wetsuits? Hmm?


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:18 PM
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a wetsuit is never required, actually, it's just sort of good manners. or sometimes it's bad manners. it all sort of depends.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:19 PM
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a classic mistake, oudemia. Two wetsuits actually decrease the buoyancy factor threefold, in just the situation when you think you need it most. The jellyfish are always stinging you in two wetsuits.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:21 PM
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who here has put on a wetsuit just for practice and then sat around the house in it? or put one on in bed during a road trip, thinking the guy next to him was fast asleep? Robert Halford, I'm looking at you.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:27 PM
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I'm sure there's a "sexy wetsuit" Halloween costume available somewhere.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:32 PM
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I've windsurfed, kayaked, and water skiied and never worn a wet suit. Unless a shirt made of something that stays warm while wet counts.

I've been told that peeing while in a climbing harness really, really sucks if you're a woman.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:36 PM
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156: or you know some very risky people.

How so?

It may be that the fact that I spend most of my outdoor water-related time in fresh water -- lakes and rivers and streams -- has a bearing on all this. Water-skiing on a lake just doesn't seem to call for a wetsuit; kayaking on a stream/river doesn't either, unless it's a really wild and massive white water situation, I guess. The snorkeling I did was, admittedly, not in fresh water (was in the Caribbean), but the water was relatively shallow and warm; you were advised to keep your eyes out for barracuda and puffer fish, but that wasn't a really huge danger.

Routine ocean activities would be a different matter.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:43 PM
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the traditional thinking on wetsuits is that they are not for routine oceanic excursions but rather for spur of the moment activities. Those most excited for spur of the moment swims are least likely to go on them, resulting in all those wetsuits that just sat around in my pockets all those years.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:48 PM
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did anyone's father pass down a wetsuit? I've heard of wetsuits as family heirlooms, but the practice is quite frowned upon.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:51 PM
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Guns as family heirlooms are apparently a thing as well, but I quite frown upon it.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 5:53 PM
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Not in mine.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:01 PM
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Halford the ocean on the east coast is a normal temperature, so you don't need a wetsuit to go in it (depending on the time of year, obviously). Nobody surfs on the east coast (to a first approximation) because the waves are shitty, and all the scuba is far enough south that the water is bathtub warm most of the year. Snorkeling, water skiing, kayaking, ocean swimming: people wear bathing suits.

Serious sea kayakers will wear wetsuits, but most people who take kayaks out a-jaunting aren't very serious. I am not serious either but somebody bought me one so I thought what the hey, I will engage in some October kayaking.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:13 PM
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I forgot windsurfing in 168.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:14 PM
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Also, the hell? Most people with fancy road bikes like riding bikes. It's not like you catch some weird triathlon disease.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:15 PM
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The triathlon guy I know said they only wear a wet suit if the river is below some temperature.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:18 PM
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See, that prolonged deadpan condom joke is more like the text I remember.


Posted by: Lord Castock | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:19 PM
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It's not like you catch some weird triathlon disease.

Honestly, Sifu, who doesn't catch triathlon disease?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:20 PM
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169: That's the only time I ever see wetsuits. Except there's some portly bearded dude who wears one to our pool in the summer when he shows up with his kids. I assume it's for maximum sun protection because god knows it's not for warmth here.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:21 PM
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People who... wear... wetsuits? Dunno. I'm sort of lost.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:21 PM
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Thanks, Lord Castock. You can borrow a wetsuit anytime. And I'm going to read your comments now.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:22 PM
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I've been surfing* on the East Coast ... IN A WETSUIT.

*sort of. I'm a terrible surfer and have only tried it a few times.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:23 PM
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Everyone has had the triathlon disease. It's just people who admit it who get made fun of all the time. Some of us probably have it right now.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:23 PM
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172: Huh. See, I totally didn't catch that (duh), though the signs were all there. It's possible that people are becoming too earnest around here.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:24 PM
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I would probably have worn a wetsuit if I had ever tried surfing during the several years where I lived within walking distance of some of the finest breaks in the world. Dodged that bullet, though, thank goodness.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:24 PM
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179 to 178???


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:26 PM
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I said 172 and I meant it.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:28 PM
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What do you do if you wanna wakeboard on a cold lake in spring? Wetsuit, no?

I think my insane former in law who likes to kayak in shipping lanes in NY harbor wears a wetsuit.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:30 PM
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What do you do if you wanna wakeboard on a cold lake in spring? Wetsuit, no?

Sure, but mostly people just wait until the water is warmer.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:32 PM
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I sometimes put on a wetsuit before getting in the lake at Jammies' parents' house in Montana.

I put on a wetsuit one time before going swimming with the manatees, in December in Florida.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:35 PM
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I have worn a wetsuit while whitewater rafting in Colorado.


Posted by: Mr. Blandings | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:45 PM
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I have worn a wet suit while walking from a Manhattan office to my hotel in the rain.


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 6:52 PM
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I have worn a wet suit when sneezing.


Posted by: heebie-heebie | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:12 PM
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Nobody surfs on the east coast (to a first approximation) because the waves are shitty

Not true. I know a number of people who surf in New Hampshire, shitty waves or not.

Wetsuit is required, although the water temperature does get up into the 60s during summertime.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:15 PM
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First approximation! First approximation! Sheez.

People surf off Cape Cod, too, and in Jersey. But not many, because shitty.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:18 PM
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I have worn a wetsuit to like piña coladas.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:18 PM
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To a first approximation, we're all dead.


Posted by: beamish | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:20 PM
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Someone left my cake out in the rain in a wetsuit.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:21 PM
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I found five dollars. In a wetsuit.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:23 PM
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Dot.com


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:23 PM
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Stormcrow was in Wetconsinsuit.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:27 PM
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I've worn a wetsuit for kayaking and windsurfing in the Pacific in the Bay Area. I don't remember if I wore a wetsuit kayaking in the San Juan Islands. I don't think I've ever worn a wetsuit for snorkeling, which I've done only in warm water areas.

I have not worn a wetsuit whitewater rafting, canoeing, or swimming in cold mountain lakes that still have a bit of snow on parts of the shore.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:35 PM
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Wetconsinsuit wears Mischwimigan like a bathing cap.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:36 PM
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And I still don't get Die Antwoord.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:51 PM
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Neither do I; I get the Post-Gazette.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 7:57 PM
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It's free on the internet.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 8:00 PM
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Actually, we dropped our subscription years ago. But everything is allowed in the pursuit of a cheap punchline.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 8:03 PM
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As you well know.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 8:03 PM
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I thought maybe it was a coupon thing.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 8:05 PM
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I was once walking in the woods when a tremendous storm rolled through. In my rush to get out of the rain, I tripped and fell into the remains of an old campfire. As you might imagine, I wore that wet soot all the way home.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 8:05 PM
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Sounds ember-assing.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10-15-12 8:33 PM
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You'd wear a wetsuit for almost all watersports in the UK, as the sea and lakes are bloody cold most of the year. I don't think I've ever seen anyone waterski in the UK without wearing one.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 12:12 AM
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Yep, I have worn my wetsuit many times. You can swim in the sea without one of course, and some coasts are warmer than others, but in west Wales where my parents live, wearing a wetsuit means you can stay in the water for as long as you like, rather than having to get out after ten minutes because you can't feel your hands or feet.

And I always say to myself that I won't pee in it, but as soon as I'm in the water I want to.


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 12:49 AM
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I wore a wetsuit once, but it was in Florida. For real. This isn't a pun, or a condom joke, or anything. I was in Florida, and I wore a wetsuit. That's the whole story. Honest.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 12:55 AM
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Halford: Large French-speaking city, or large German-speaking city?


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 12:55 AM
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halford, dude, people go snorkeling to see cool stuff in tropical waters, like in nevis, or phuket, or the great barrier reef. you don't need a wetsuit. what do you even see when you go snorkeling in cold-ass, rough water? turbulent sand?

I am concerned about text. either that he is having some kind of breakdown or that someone has rtfa with maniacal carefulness and is now sock-puppeting cruelly. I fear the former.


Posted by: alameida | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 4:55 AM
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A driver honked at the driver ahead of them because that driver yielded (before turning) to pedestrians crossing with the light at the crosswalk. I hate that because it keeps happening to me both as a passenger and a driver, often at that very corner. He didn't notice the crossing guard, didn't get past the light, and got yelled at until it turned germ again. Makes for a cheerful start to the day.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 4:59 AM
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I've been snorkeling both with and without a wetsuit (in Alaska and Hawaii, respectively). Both were fun, and in both cases it was rather clear whether you needed a wet suit or not.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 5:14 AM
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212: oooh, I hate that.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 5:21 AM
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what do you even see when you go snorkeling in cold-ass, rough water? turbulent sand?

Tropicalist.

Last time I was scuba diving was when I was over in Archenland this year... getting the kit from the dive centre and I asked if I needed a wetsuit in these waters. "Where are you from?"
"Scotland."
(thoughtful pause)
"Nah, you'll be fine in trunks."


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 5:26 AM
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Do you even have an crossing guard to worry about her yelling at you?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 5:26 AM
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216: actually we do have crossing guards, but I think I've avoiding getting yelled at them myself.

I do get frustrated when I'm on my bicycle and a crossing guard stops traffic and waves me across. No! I'm a vehicle! I can merge! Save your stopping-and-waving energy for the dear little children!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 5:30 AM
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"I've avoided". On that note I'm going to go run in somewhat adjacent to traffic.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 5:31 AM
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"by them". Sheesh.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 5:31 AM
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I actually find text pretty amusing, for what it's worth.


Posted by: Awl | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 5:35 AM
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Text, seriously, what is up? You've got a lot of history around here, for almost all of which you've interacted with people like a normal, sane, human being.

Not everyone has always felt that way.


Posted by: urple | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 5:59 AM
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205 and 206 together provide all the joy I need to get me through the day.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 6:17 AM
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Coal. Coal coal coal.


Posted by: Awl | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 6:21 AM
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221: 404 Not Found? That is sinister.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 6:36 AM
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We don't own wetsuits, but probably should get them. Al, it's said to be very cool to snorkel downstream while salmon are running upstream. I like the pretty little fishies in the tropics as much as anyone: problem is when you come up, you have to breathe that hot humid tropical air.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 6:46 AM
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||

I'm beginning to think that neoliberals ruin everything. This article made urban development sound as a unattractive as possible. I hope to God neoliberals don't discover sex. The articles about how orgasms promote economic development might be enough to drive me to celibacy.

|>


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 6:47 AM
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I have a wetsuit around here somewhere.

Way OT: I was just looking for something about his house, which I understood to be rather un-Japanese in design and decoration, but this 1970 NYT profile of Yukio Mishima is more generally interesting, less for the ironic-in-retrospect treatment of stuff like his little uniformed playgroup and the homoeroticism of some of his books than for its old-fashioned attitude. The writer is more respectful, almost indulgent, than someone profiling a comparably prominent cultural figure today in the NYT (or equivalent), which would be full of challenges and rebukes pulled from the Inter-ether (privilege, diversity, the women in your books/movies/television series are...). Times have somethinged.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 7:05 AM
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OT: Michael Bérubé writes about his old chair.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 7:20 AM
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228: Wasn't I a fool not to realize that Joe Paterno was in fact a preening hypocrite, styling himself as a force for integrity and rectitude while secretly presiding over what would become a scandal?

Yes.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 7:26 AM
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I found that Berube piece deeply annoying, though understandable. There is zero recognition on Berube's own part that he was part of the cult of the demigod that helped caused the problem. Of course Berube himself isn't guilty, but it seemed to me the appropriate response called for a little more introspection and a little bit less running defense (and to be clear, that article is running defense, though since Berube's not an idiot the article concedes what it needs to concede).


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 7:33 AM
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Mumble that part in The Unbearable Lightness of Being about Oedipus mumble.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 7:35 AM
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227: This is good

As for all the blood and gore in Mishima novels: "This blood and brutality is something we have stylized into a special sense of beauty. It comes from our subconscious. We have always had a special symbolism about blood. For example, we use blood as a metaphor for cherry blossoms. . . ."

And this:

"The martial spirit I would like to see restored to our culture is not like pre-World War II militarism. Japan's traditional martial spirit disappeared during the Meiji period [the reign of the Emperor Mutsuhito, who transformed Japan into a modern industrialized state between 1867 and 1912], and as it disappeared, militarism appeared. These are opposites in the Japanese mentality, although most foreigners mix up militarism and the samurai spirit. It was in fact the policy of the American occupation to mix the two up. The occupation wanted to cut off all military symbols of Japanese culture."

As far as the tone, I have read feminist theory interpretations of Mishima more sympathetic than to Kawabata. She's wrong, but in fashion.

228:Others have commented for me, especially over at LGM


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 7:41 AM
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I also was a bit bothered by Berube's piece, although I'm generally a fan.

There is a strong "You outsiders just can't understand!" subtext running through the whole thing, even while he acknowledges that that attitude is a problem.


Posted by: AcademicLurker | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 7:42 AM
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tl;dr, but the length of that essay suggests to me that it doesn't make a convincing case...


Posted by: real ffeJ annaH | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 7:45 AM
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He also makes a "you academics are snobs who hate football but like squash" move, which is kind of gobsmackingly beside the point.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 7:48 AM
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Berube needs to shut up about the whole thing. He's lucky he could trade one endowed chair for another, less-embarrassing, one. He should have just done that and leave it at that.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 7:50 AM
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The "you're racist if you don't appreciate Joe Paterno's graduation rates" passage was my favorite. Any port in a storm, I guess.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 7:53 AM
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236. Exactly. Well unimpressed.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 7:53 AM
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I think he was right about how people who went to non-football schools underestimate the extent to which academic progress is a positive externality of sports, not a competitor with it.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 7:54 AM
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academic progress is a positive externality of sports, not a competitor with it.

Sometimes true for individual schools, but false in the aggregate. Sports are a net use rather than a net source of cash for higher education, even if you consider only the so-called "money sports". One could make a double bank shot argument about how legislators and donors would commit even less to universities without the halo effect of sports, but absent such dynamic scoring, college athletics subtract from the balance available for academics.


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 8:05 AM
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I'm beginning to think that neoliberals ruin everything. . . . The articles about how orgasms promote economic development might be enough to drive me to celibacy.

It doesn't quite fit that description, but you might want to not read this article just to be safe.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 8:05 AM
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You'd wear a wetsuit for almost all watersports in the UK, as the sea and lakes are bloody cold most of the year. I don't think I've ever seen anyone waterski in the UK without wearing one.

Yeah, I had a wetsuit as a kid, though it was probably a hand-me-down from my brother who windsurfed when he was younger. As best I can remember, I used it mainly when we'd go swimming/inner-tubing in a lake fairly near my parent's house. By British standards, it was probably fairly warm in summer, but it felt cold to me. I also swam with it in the Channel a few times while sailing, and that was really cold.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 8:08 AM
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230 et seq.: Paternoster kept coaching because he feared death was, I thought, rather weak.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 8:12 AM
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I hope to God neoliberals don't discover sex. The articles about how orgasms promote economic development might be enough to drive me to celibacy.

Something something evidence of enhanced fertility something something demographic rejuvenation something actuarial crisis of defined benefit pensions.


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 8:13 AM
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I've always worn a wetsuit while scuba diving, even in ridiculously warm water. Although sometimes a shorty, I guess (the time the fire coral got me I was wearing a shorty -- grrrr).


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 8:16 AM
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Somebody call 911. Shorty's buring on the sea floor.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 8:22 AM
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246 made me laugh.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 8:29 AM
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I'm totally wiped out today and unable to come up with anything to post. Email me at heebie dot geebie at email if you've got something for me to put up.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 8:35 AM
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Glad something can. I don't understand why the name on Michael Berube's chair means anything to anyone. My guess is that it doesn't really.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 8:35 AM
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heebie, if I email you a post, will you put it up?


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 8:38 AM
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Probably.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 8:58 AM
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There is zero recognition on Berube's own part that he was part of the cult of the demigod that helped caused the problem.

And, in fact, he included a pretty specific denial that the existence of said cult led to anything untoward happening. Shorter Berube: Sometimes shit happens, and this time it happened to the Penn State football program.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 9:17 AM
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One thing I don't understand about the Berube/Paterno thing: was the chair named in honour of Paterno or because he/his family actually endowed it? If the former, why the hell would you name a literature chair after a football coach? If the latter, isn't there something seriously wrong if you're paying your football coach enough that they can endow a chair of literature? All that is ignoring the case-specific ethical stuff, obviously.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 9:17 AM
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Obviously, it is much better to name a chair in national security studies after a football coach.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 9:21 AM
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253: He speaks of writing an "annual letter" to the Paternos, which implies they endowed it.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 9:22 AM
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If the latter, isn't there something seriously wrong if you're paying your football coach enough that they can endow a chair of literature?

It's the latter. The coach in question was famously modest in his spending habits, so he had a lot of money to give away, and did.


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 9:23 AM
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They might have endowed it but it could have also been funded by gifts in their name. That is, I think, much more common.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 9:24 AM
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Do you even have an crossing guard to worry about her yelling at you?

The one nearest our house is an old woman who wears a giant clock around her neck, Flava Flav style. Since the start of this school year she has also taken to wearing shockingly bright red lipstick.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 9:24 AM
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Berube:

But does anyone seriously believe that if Jerry Sandusky had been a wrestling or gymnastics coach, journalists would be calling for the closure of small-time college sports programs across the board?

Here is Berube very carefully missing the point. The sanctions to Penn State football - and the anger directed at the program and at big-time college sports - weren't about what Sandusky did. They were about what Paterno, Spanier, Curley, Schultz and others did.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 9:27 AM
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257 rendered useless by 256.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 9:27 AM
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isn't there something seriously wrong if you're paying your football coach enough that they can endow a chair of literature?

You may also be intrigued by our policies on healthcare financing and ownership of firearms.


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 9:27 AM
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isn't there something seriously wrong if you're paying your football coach enough that they can endow a chair of literature?

In the US, IIRC, being a university football coach is what you do if you really want to be an investment banker, but you'd rather do something even more ridiculously overpaid instead.
http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1258208-college-footballs-top-50-coaching-salaries-are-they-paid-what-they-should-be

"it should go without saying that most BCS programs will throw down a few million per season for their head football coaches."
The first one in that article gets $1.7 million, which the author reckons is underpayment on an almost criminal scale.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 9:27 AM
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I was told, though I have no idea if this is true, that the family gave a one-time gift of (maybe?) $4 or $5 million in the early 90s and have given a considerable sum annually since that time. I understand further that the family has promised to continue to give that annual gift, though there's considerable uncertainty, given the sense that the university has not stood by JoePa, about what will happen with that gift in the future.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 9:29 AM
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262 -- Meanwhile, the players (who bear the injury risk, of course) are paid nothing other than a scholarship and a woefully inadequate stipend for food and books. The low stipend is set by the NCAA cartel, which also imposes a requirement against granting scholarships that are guaranteed even if a player is injured or loses his place on the team (ie, no play, no education). To call that system exploitative gives exploitative employers a bad name.

259 does spot one of the key errors in the piece.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 9:34 AM
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You can't really know, but I would tend to suspect that the culture that allowed the coverup was more of a big-football-school culture generally than the JoePa cult particularly. I've been married to a peripheral JoePa cult member (not anymore, Penn State football is dead to him) for a decade and a half now, so I've got some kind of feel for the tone of it, and it was all about how Joe could be counted on the right thing, even if it hurt the program: PSU could have had more championships if they'd been willing to sacrifice academics and so on. This, clearly, was a delusional fantasy, but I'd predict that someone who bought into the St. Joe fantasy would have gone straight to the cops because they thought Joe would want them to.

I could imagine a JoePa cultist covering up something from Joe to protect both the program from injury and Joe from having to know that bad acts were being committed. But once Joe was an active part of the coverup, which he was, the malefactors were cynically protecting the program, not part of the "Joe is the bestest, kindest, most modest, unassuming, decent coach in all of football" crowd.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 9:34 AM
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265 is entirely right. McQueary certainly didn't harbor any illusions about the ethics of the Penn State program, or about Joe Paterno. And both, by their behavior, validated his judgment.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 9:46 AM
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265 -- well, whatever you want to call it, Berube seems to be arguing that what happened with Sandusky (while criminal) had nothing to do with either the cult of JoePa at Penn State specifically or the broader cult of college football generally. Thus, the NCAA sanctions were inappropriate because this was purely a criminal matter.

That's how I read his argument, anyway (there's also a lot of rhetorical posturing that's not quite an argument). The point seems to be to try and remove any Sandusky cloud from those, including Berube himself, who were directly involved in promoting the Penn State culture but weren't involved in the specific crime.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 9:48 AM
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Not on the topic of anything but I won't send this to heebie because she'll call be a buzzkill, I just found this fucked-up blog of a white woman and her afro wig from an explanation of it here and haven't read enough to try to reassure myself that she's actually self-aware in any way.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 9:53 AM
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The point seems to be to try and remove any Sandusky cloud from those, including Berube himself, who were directly involved in promoting the Penn State culture but weren't involved in the specific crime.

Eventually, that will have to happen or the collateral damage will be too great. To a first approximation, Penn State is quality post-secondary public education in this state and I do not think you can separate Penn State from football.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 9:59 AM
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I won't send this to heebie because she'll call me a buzzkill

Probably so, but with great affection.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 10:08 AM
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I don't think anyone's calling for shutting the University down. But one would have hoped that the incident would have prompted a bit more broad reflection from someone in Berube's position about the dangers of the cult. And of course the NCAA was completely justified in treating the Sandusky cover up as a failure of the football program, even if it was also a criminal failure.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 10:10 AM
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I've never understood how people who attend a university on a scholarship which is awarded on the basis of non-academic talent and who will lose the scholarship if they don't perform satisfactorily in a non-academic revenue generating capacity are not considered employees, eligible to unionize and/or to freely negotiate their contracts with their employers.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 10:21 AM
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are not considered employees

Otherwise the sham of their being "amateurs" would be fully acknowledged.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 10:25 AM
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262

In the US, IIRC, being a university football coach is what you do if you really want to be an investment banker, but you'd rather do something even more ridiculously overpaid instead.

I don't see anything wrong with paying the coaches well. The players should be paid too of course.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 10:44 AM
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270: But of course!


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 10:48 AM
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I don't see anything wrong with paying the coaches well.

I see something wrong when you're paying coaches enough to endow a chair, rather than paying the professor in the chair.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 10:49 AM
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It would be wrong to expect any given Penn State professor, alumnus or student to go all whip-of-cords on the institution,* but I'm not going to shed a tear for the sake of the Paternos' notional appreciation of Berube's past brilliance in their name, either.

* Which is not to say that I would object to any such.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 11:24 AM
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Back to the OT, I just watched some videos ("I fink u freeky", "fatty boom boom") and I'm genuinely mystified by some of the comparisons upthread. Anyone mentioning Vanilla Ice and ICP in the same sentence, unless it includes "wish they were anywhere as interesting as", is being ridiculous.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 9:38 PM
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Also, it's a good thing I've been drinking, because I'm pretty sure otherwise Yolandi would haunt my dreams.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 10-16-12 10:10 PM
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.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 10-17-12 3:05 PM
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I've been married to a peripheral JoePa cult member (not anymore, Penn State football is dead to him)

I've honestly been shocked at how strongly negative the reaction to Sandusky has been, and how many people seem to want to disassociate completely from Sandusky and even from Penn State football as a result. Sincere question: why has this generated such a fiercely negative reaction?

I mean, comparable situations? It's been mentioned here before that Roman Polanski ought to recieve more public ostracism and shaming than he has, but I don't think many people think fans of his movies are somehow monsters by affiliation. And, you know, when I sing Billie Jean on karaoke night, people boo because I'm a terrible singer, not because "How dare you sing a song written by a serial child molestor!" But anyone offering even limited praise for Sandusky--what he did was terrible, but he was a brilliant defensive coordinator--gets looked at cross-eyed. (And it's more or less the same deal for Paterno.)

I think this has something to do with institutional culpability relating to the cover-up, but it feels like different standards being applied, for reasons I can't quite pin down.


Posted by: urple | Link to this comment | 10-18-12 7:59 AM
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Bump.


Posted by: urple | Link to this comment | 10-18-12 8:22 AM
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