Re: Assumptions

1

"Excuse me, I don't know how to tell you this...but that Christ you keep talking about....well... I killed him."


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:04 PM
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2

Only after you learn to do the Exorcist head twist and speak in Latin.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:05 PM
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3

You should assume a creepily beatific air, tell him you've come to spread "the good news" and then hand him a copy of The God Delusion.


Posted by: Lord Castock | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:06 PM
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4

Only after you point him to the comment section on PZ Myers' blog.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:06 PM
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5

(Followed by a copy of The Qur'an. Just to fuck with him.)


Posted by: Lord Castock | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:07 PM
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6

You could make the devil horn sign at him, but isn't that a football thing where you live?


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:08 PM
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7

I think to carry it off effectively, you'd have to pretend to be more religious than you are. But if you were willing to present as somewhat observantly Jewish, I bet you could embarrass him a bit.

I don't think anything you could say from an atheist/agnostic perspective would have any useful effect, but it might make you feel better.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:09 PM
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8

Or "accidentally" show him your tail and horns.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:10 PM
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9

Yes you should clarify your views, and he ought to be suitably chagrined/apologetic. If he's not, I rather wonder why he's involved. Of course, if these are some sort of faith-based "service learning projects" that focus on "the Christian experience," (doubtful from the OP) his statements are at least understandable. But if you're going to be involved, it makes sense to establish a common basis for understanding.

On preview, pretty much pwned by LB.


Posted by: bill | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:17 PM
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10

I could apologetically say "Actually, my family is Jewish." And then hiss and waggle my forked tongue.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:17 PM
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11

Tell him you don't eat pork and see if he assumes Jewish or Muslim.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:18 PM
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12

While our project is not faith-based, Heebie U does have a religious affiliation. Nevertheless, it hires heathens.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:19 PM
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13

11: He saw me eat a piece of pepperoni pizza.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:19 PM
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14

You could invite him to your coven meeting.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:20 PM
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15

I would do it in some awkward, alienating way because I am highly allergic to religious presumption.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:22 PM
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16

Tell him you eat the blood of christian babies and see if he assumes Jewish or Muslim.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:23 PM
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17

Or the blood of any babies, and see if he assumes they're Christian.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:24 PM
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18

15: That's because you're Baptist.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:24 PM
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19

10: I think that'd bounce right off -- it'd be like saying your family was Dutch, you'd get a "And your point is?" look. To get to embarrassment (I'm speculating based on limited experience here) I think you'd need to explicitly pull out "My religion forbids me from appearing to worship Christ, if these programs constitute specifically Christian worship, I and other Jews really can't participate. Which is a shame." But just pointing out that you're Jewish, so Christiany-themed stuff is unwelcoming would, I'm guessing, fall pretty flat.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:25 PM
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20

More of 19: Although might still be satisfying.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:27 PM
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21

By J(eh)ov[e], I've got it! Go Godwin on his ass! Every time you meet with him about the project, wear a yellow Star of David on your chest.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:28 PM
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22

Would "Actually, my family isn't Christian" be more explicit than "Actually we're Jewish"?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:32 PM
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23

22: Tomato, tomato.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:33 PM
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24

Guess so.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:36 PM
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25

But just pointing out that you're Jewish, so Christiany-themed stuff is unwelcoming would, I'm guessing, fall pretty flat.

Not IME. Most people in that situation aren't going to drill you on how observant you are, they're just going to back off. Or possibly get even more interested in converting you; I think they get double points for us.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:37 PM
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26

I'm a little baffled by what the question or problem is. Of course you should speak up if you're feeling a little uncomfortable; a polite "just wanted to let you know if it comes up, my family's not Christian! Now, let's get to work" should be fine. This guy sounds like a pretty decent dude and should be fine with that.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:38 PM
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27

Don't listen to me, I don't know this guy, so I really don't know what I'm talking about. But I'm guessing that someone who's blithely talking about how we all worship the same Christ isn't going to be fazed by any version of "I don't", whether it's "My family's Jewish," "I'm Jewish," "My family's not Christian," "I'm an atheist," or anything else -- it's not that he won't understand what you're saying, but he won't understand that you're therefore offended by his saying that you're all worshiping Christ together.

To make him boggle, I think you'd need to explicitly say that you have a religious obligation not to worship Christ, so framing whatever it is you're all doing together as Christian worship means that your conscience obliges you to disassociate yourself from it, or at least to correct his framing.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:39 PM
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28

if these programs constitute specifically Christian worship, I and other Jews really can't participate. Which is a shame.

...because then all 0 of the other Jews in this town will also be excluded.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:39 PM
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29

"Your Christ was a false prophet and a fool! There is no god but Zuul!"

I mean, assuming you're comfortable with saying that, theologically.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:40 PM
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30

28: zero is a heathen number, heebie.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:40 PM
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31

This guy sounds like a pretty decent dude and should be fine with that.

I think he would be. He's a very nice, generous Latino Methodist. It's more the-personal-is-the-political am I doing other people a disservice by not speaking up.

Do I feel uncomfortable with his assumption? I dunno. I don't like it but fish don't complain that they're wet.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:41 PM
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32

I don't like it but fish don't complain that they're wet.

Dunno, they might. We know that whales bitch about that all the time.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:42 PM
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26: I don't think the guy is likely to have a problem with Heebie's saying she's Jewish, I just doubt that he'll make the leap from that to "And therefore she feels excluded by my saying that we're all worshiping the same Christ," without her being really explicit about it. I suppose she could be explicit about feeling excluded without claiming specifically religious justification for it.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:43 PM
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34

Are you calling me fat?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:43 PM
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35

Don't call heebie fat, LB.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:43 PM
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36

Don't call heebie, fat LB.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:45 PM
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37

But whales are well-known teetotalers.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:46 PM
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38

Oh, stop slinking around this! He offended your religious sensibilities so cut his head off and put the video up on YouTube.


Posted by: Biohazard | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 3:55 PM
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39

He asked my religion and I replied 'agnostic'. He asked how to spell it, and remarked with a sigh: 'Well, there are many religions, but I suppose they all worship the same God.' This remark kept me cheerful for about a week.


Posted by: Bertrand Russell | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 4:08 PM
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40

Somehow on topic, can E. Messily or any other ASL speaker confirm that this is genuine? Everyone else is welcome to imagine it is, 'cause then it's pretty hilarious.


Posted by: Awl | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 5:06 PM
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41

I'm probably going to regret posting that.


Posted by: Awl | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 5:08 PM
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42

40: Given that simply making a facial expression tends to evoke the real feeling associated with it, it seems to me that there's a sincerity associated with ASL (and presumably other sign languages) that's just not there with spoken languages. That kind of makes the whole anti-whackin' it video just that little bit sadder.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 6:44 PM
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43

I don't understand the question. "Genuine" in what sense?


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 6:56 PM
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44

||
Partly because marriage equality passed in our home state, the Dwarf Lord and I are going to get hitched. All legal like. Most of our family is going to laugh and smile if we send a 'Finally we can get married!' save-the-date, but I'm a little worried that it's too mean to the rest of them. Maybe the timing will just slowly sink in.

When did save the dates become a Thing? Why not just send the invitation? There is too much weak-sauce Victoriana in all this and yet the Dwarf Lord doesn't want Dies Irae as the first waltz. (We take turns being the sane one.)
|>


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 7:01 PM
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45

there's a sincerity associated with ASL (and presumably other sign languages) that's just not there with spoken languages

I'm ill and headed for bed, but no. You can lie, mislead, employ irony, etc just as well in a signed language as a spoken one.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 7:01 PM
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46

||
The Rachmaninov use, before alls y'alls get pedantic.
|>


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 7:03 PM
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47

Congratulations, clew. A big decision (or not, now that you're free to make it).


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 7:09 PM
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48

No matter how bad you feel, Messily, it is vitally important that you find us videos of people being fatuous lying dipshits in ASL.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 7:09 PM
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49

44: I think it's to do with planning being done so far in advance, with people needing notice to travel across the country and so forth, that one needs to let people know the date before they've settled the details like time and venue that go into an invitation.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 7:11 PM
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50

(N.B. if you actually do that I'll feel like a big jerk. Feel better!)


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 7:12 PM
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51

Congrats, Clew and Dwarf Lord! That'll be a fun wedding for sure.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 7:13 PM
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52

44: You could do like my friends did and send out a "save the date" item so steeped in in-joke hipster DIY/Etsy culture that most of the recipients have no idea what you're talking about.

29: My last post in the other thread was before seeing this. Morphic field resonance!


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 7:19 PM
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53

I made a quite elaborate mock-Winsor-McKay save the date thing and then failed to mail it to anyone. That's so like me that it is possibly the most like myself think I have ever done.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 7:23 PM
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54

Or thing, for that matter.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 7:23 PM
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55

Congratulation on the wedding.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 7:32 PM
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56

I would be pretty uncomfortable asking a couple hundred people to save a date if we didn't have the time and venue nailed down. Also, what a terrible negotiating position to put yourself in with the venue.

Inquiring within, I discover that I want to hand-write the invitations*, and the Dwarf Lord has a lot of relatives. We might email a minimalist save-the-date while I get a new kind of cramp.

* Hard-sauce Victoriana.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 7:34 PM
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57

Congrats!


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 7:49 PM
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58

Yes, congratulations, clew!


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 7:57 PM
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59

Clew, shouldn't you have a murder mystery reception?


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 7:57 PM
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60

Thanks, all.
redfoxtailshrub, I had to look up Windsor-McKay. I
hope you still have the thing, perhaps in a frame or shadowbox.

The full nym is clew-to-earing, Turgid, not that I ever use the whole thing.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 8:08 PM
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Congratulations, clew and dwarf lord!

I was drafted to hand-write addresses and personalizations for one of my friends' wedding invitations, as I have reasonably nice cursive. (I cost exactly three glasses of raki.) My experience was that as long as you are ONLY doing some bits to personalize already-printed cards, you can get through it in an afternoon or two, with friends to help you focus.

If you are seriously planning to hand-write invitations all your guests, you should definitely send out a "save the date email" because this project will take you a month.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 8:24 PM
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62

60.last: welllll... You could STILL do it!


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 8:24 PM
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63

Huzzah!


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 8:25 PM
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64

Congrats, clew.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 8:26 PM
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65

I mean... You owe it to yourselves.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 8:28 PM
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66

My parents had a small wedding but sent announcements to many more. Family lore has it that they were up late the last few nights before the wedding hand-coloring their announcements (including a separate card insert to affirm that my mother was not changing her name, a big shock in those days).

Perhaps as a result, they slept through the first two days of their honeymoon. Or at least that was the story we heard when joshing them about how fast their first child came along.

Congratulations, clew! May your marriage affirm the love and bond you already share.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 8:29 PM
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67

We sent out a save-the-date email with a picture and a link to our website with details/registry/accommodations. Then we sent out a formal hand-addressed invitation later but really people had all the information already.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 8:37 PM
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68

It was nice because it took pressure off for getting the invitations out particularly quickly, so we could make them a little nicer and more customized.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 8:38 PM
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69

Congrats!


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 9:11 PM
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70

62; Arrrrrrr! But if we have a hacker pirate mystery wedding with waltzing, it will turn into steampunk will we nill we, and that's a step too far. There must be a term for the thing you hate because it's nearly yourself. In German. Trapnel? AWB?

Registries. The fuck. Excuse me. This can be the most hideous ABD procrastination ever, eh? But I don't want to throw it to the mothers, having made a point of being independent for some time.

I have no wedding-personalizing urge*, is the thing. I've been committed to the Dwarf Lord for a long time now, and this is pretty explicitly for the traditional side of the families and, you know, recognition of community bonds and other vital but blushy stuff, and I think they're going to get Miss Manners by the numbers. And good food and a live band and probably a contra caller.

* The gods are going to get me for that one.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 9:15 PM
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71

Oliver North does weddings?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 9:25 PM
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72

There must be a term for the thing you hate because it's nearly yourself. In German.

Wow, there really ought to be such a word. My German sucks, so I wouldn't know it if there were, but--Blume?


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 9:25 PM
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73

Surely it comes up on public radio!

All's y'all's sweet.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 9:26 PM
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74

I mean, our personalization was mild. The invitations were from Costco. We got custom stamps. Uh, what else? We hand-addressed them, cuz you gotta.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 9:29 PM
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75

The thing with registries is if you don't specify shit you do want people buy you shit you don't want.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 9:30 PM
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76

Registries have their uses.

(Yes, I posted that in the debt jubilee thread too. No one reads all the threads.)


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 9:33 PM
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77

Congrats clew and Dwarf Lord! And because you're doing the traditional, yea verily heed 75.


Posted by: bill | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 9:40 PM
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78

74: I must know someone with a working line-printer. See? See? The curse is working.

75 makes sense. Hm. Unexpected source of research funding. ('Pith me a mouse.')

Occupy Sandy is clever.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 9:48 PM
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There must be a term fot the thing you hate because it's nearly yourself

The narcissism of small differences.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 10:06 PM
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80

I thought that was how you loved yourself, foolishmortal? Narcissus didn't hate anyone that I recall.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 10:17 PM
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81

Nevertheless, that is the term. There's probably a German equivalent.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 10:27 PM
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82

I'm using the phrase myself in the first link in teo's link. Is Google that scary, did teo do a clever, or do the fates arrange?


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 10:42 PM
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83

I did no clever, so it's one of the other two.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 11- 9-12 10:45 PM
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84

The narcissism of small differences is the term for your hatred of something that's nearly yourself because you represent it as being much different from you (hence "narcissism" of small differences; the sneetch with the chiliagon on its belly thinks that extra side really sets him apart from the sneetch with the 999-gon on its belly)—what clew is after is quite different.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 12:06 AM
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85

what clew is after is quite different

I'm not entirely certain that it is. But I can see how it could be.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 12:09 AM
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86

I am thinking of a slippery slope down the other leg of the trousers of time. Gemmunz.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 12:15 AM
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87

Hatred of something that's nearly yourself because it's nearly yourself necessarily involves your representing it as nearly yourself, which is precisely what the narcissism of small differences excludes, I think. (Even if the small difference narcissist acknowledges a similarity, the small difference still makes all the difference.) I don't think element of "I could just see myself doing this steampunky thing, it would be so like me, etc." in 70 is narcissism of small differences (even if, having decided against that course of action, clew can still assure herself that the grace of god has kept her from going there).


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 12:17 AM
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88

But how far apart are the trouser legs, is I think the question.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 12:17 AM
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89

I am thinking of a slippery slope down the other leg of the trousers of time.

Guh Rōs, clew.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 12:18 AM
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87: Right, I see what you're getting at. I read 70.1 as being somewhat ambiguous about why clew considers a steampunk wedding a step too far, which I think is the deciding factor in determining if this is an example of NoSD or not.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 12:22 AM
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91

Congratulations, clew!


Posted by: J, Robot | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 12:43 AM
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92

87 is precisely right.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 2:35 AM
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93

going to laugh and smile if we send a 'Finally we can get married!' save- the-date, but I'm a little worried that it's too mean to the rest of them. Maybe the timing will just slowly sink in.

Why is it mean? Shocking or even offensive I could understand depending on their sensibilities, but why mean? (Fair warning: My follow-up question will be, Why should you pander to whatever the anticipated response is by concealing your ethical decision?)


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 2:44 AM
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94

I think to carry it off effectively, you'd have to pretend to be more religious than you are. But if you were willing to present as somewhat observantly Jewish, I bet you could embarrass him a bit I don't think anything you could say from an atheist/agnostic perspective would have any useful effect, but it might make you feel better.

This and LB's follow ups are weird to me. Why does she have to pretend to be a religious Jew? Telling someone you're not Christian makes it pretty clear that you don't worship Christ.

Also, re: 7, 19, and 27, heebie didn't say that her intent is to embarrass or boggle him. I assumed that she wanted to educate him that real inclusiveness covers more than Protestants.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 2:58 AM
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95

if these programs constitute specifically Christian worship, I and other Jews really can't participate. Which is a shame...

I suppose this is somewhat redundant (never stopped me before) but why equivocate in this odd way? The problem as heebie put it isn't that everyone's expected to go to church (though maybe that is part of the project), but that he's defining "inclusive" in an uninclusive way. Why not just say, "I think you're assuming everyone involved is Christian, which I, for example, am not."


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 3:16 AM
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This thread reminds me of an amusing story Fleur tells from her youth. She was Christmas caroling with one of her choral groups in a town noted for its lack of any sort of diversity. The singers were assembled in front of a house door, cheerfully singing some three-part harmony, awaiting the inevitable moment when the delighted householders would emerge, beaming at the Curier & Ives scene before them. Suddenly the door flew open, and there stood a boy of about 12. He surveyed the scene grimly, then snarled "We're Jewish!" before slamming the door shut.


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 5:24 AM
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94, 95: I may be way off base, and I probably am. But I think someone who's thoughtlessly blathering on about how we all worship the same Christ without inquiring to see if 'we' all do isn't considering the sensibilities of someone who doesn't consider themselves a Christian -- while Heebie's town may not have Jews, it's got to have non-churchgoers. I'm guessing that a bare announcement that Heebie's not Christian isn't going to have any impact, because the guy doesn't give a damn, and if she conveys that she's annoyed, he'll just think she's being stupidly touchy.

My thinking that to make the guy notice that he's being a jerk, you have to speak his language: you are interacting with people who have religious beliefs and obligations, just like yours, and what you're doing either excludes them or offends their consciences.

I could be totally wrong about which way the guy is going to jump, and Heebie doesn't need to make him feel like a jerk, of course. If she just says that she's Jewish, nothing bad will come of it. I was just going for what seemed to me to be the most effective way to get through to the guy.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 6:21 AM
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98

Yay, clew!


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:07 AM
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Congratulations to Clew and Dwarf Lord.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:18 AM
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100

There must be a term for the thing you hate because it's nearly yourself. In German.

Wow, there really ought to be such a word. My German sucks, so I wouldn't know it if there were, but--Blume?

I'm on record as really hating the must-be-a-word-for-that-in-German thing. You just explained it in English, what more do you want? You can smoosh all those explanatory words together if you want to make a compound word. Voilà.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:28 AM
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101

They sound like quite an entertaining couple.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:28 AM
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102

Italicize that second line, too.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:28 AM
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103

There must be a word in German for the phenomenon of hating when people joke that there must be a word in German about some phenomenon.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:29 AM
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104

I know I've mentioned this here before, but my grandfather, a minister, had somewhat troubling and old-fashioned theories about jewish people. He was perfectly kind, of course, but definitely worried they were going to Hell.

Things improved somewhat towards the end of his life; he ended up in a retirement home with a lot of Jewish people, and I think they managed to get across that he should really stop trying to convert them. So instead, he switched to trying to get them to be more observant. This did not go terribly well either.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:30 AM
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105

I'm missing what's old-fashioned about that theory.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:32 AM
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106

103: I can't imagine Germans being hateful.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:32 AM
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There should be a German word for asking to italicize the second line.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:33 AM
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There must be a word in German for the phenomenon of hating when people joke that there must be a word in German about some phenomenon.

Is there a word in German for ignorance?


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:35 AM
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There must be a word in German for the phenomenon of hating when people joke that there must be a word in German about some phenomenon.

You can't tempt me into making one up! Noooo!


Is there a word in German for ignorance?

There isn't, actually. Crazy, right?


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:46 AM
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Deutcheswortverbindungbarkeitbeobachtunghasse


Posted by: real ffeJ annaH | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:50 AM
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Deutcheswortverbindungbarkeitbeobachtunghasse

Woops, fixed.


Posted by: real ffeJ annaH | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:52 AM
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Crazy, right?

I wouldn't know. I don't know much German. I don't even know what the German word for wedding is. Do you?


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:52 AM
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Is there a German word for thinking someone is insulting someone else, when they're really insulting you?


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:57 AM
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I don't know if there is or not, but that sort of thing would definitely give me the creeps!


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:58 AM
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I don't even know what the German word for wedding is. Do you?

There actually isn't one. Crazy, right?


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 8:13 AM
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I guess in 108 I was being imprecise. The word I'd be looking for is "love of ignorance" or perhaps "love of that which is ignorant." But that's really awkward, even more-so in German I'd guess, so it's probably more like "love for him who is ignorant."

is "dumbfuck" German?


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 8:14 AM
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There actually isn't one. Crazy, right?

No, but it is kind of stupid of them.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 8:16 AM
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could a panic whore honey trap a dumbfuck? of that I am uncertain. It would depend on whether the panic whore were herself a dumbfuck. If so, she couldn't of course, in that a dumbfuck loves him who is ignorant, and a honey trap can only take place if the panic whore doesn't actually want to have sex with her partner.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 8:24 AM
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Congratulations, clew!


Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 9:58 AM
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Sir Kraab, I am mixed about that (93) myself. I think most of my worry is that it is so far outside reasoning they recognize that they'll feel it as gloating, not celebrating, and that that will push them even farther away from my worldview. I'm trying for 'Love and I had the wit to win'. On the other hand, if I never confront them, they have even less reason to change.

This balance is why I thought Assumptions was a good thread. The framing part is why the 'As a Jew, I can't make Christian religious observances' might work, though I would check out what 'Jews for Christ' claim to know what counterarguments might be brought up. One doesn't want it to be a matter for debate, but it so often is.

Blume, philosophical & psychological terms in German come up at Unfogged all the time; if I had been satisfied with the English I could think of I'd have used that; do you feel I've insulted German or English?

And winding up on the cheerfully trivial steampunk question, I don't hate steampunks, but I fear the appeal of slipping into steampunkery. I think the style is appealing specifically because it elides modern energy dilemmas, and I can't forget that. (Playing colonialism and happy-harlot grosses me out too, but I know more groups that are conscious of and counteracting that. Well, the colonialism. Everybody seems to joke about whores.)


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 10:02 AM
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Oh right, I got all caught up in my German annoyance and forgot the actual matter at hand: Congratulations, clew!

Re. wedding personalization, I think there are a lot of things you can go to extra trouble for because just because you like them, and you think it would be a cool thing to have at your celebration. It's when you start thinking of them as "an expression of who you are as a couple" that you're getting into the danger zone.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 10:05 AM
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121 before seeing 120. I don't think you've insulted either language! And I don't at all mind the use of German terms where they're useful. It's the must-be-a-word-for-that-in-German thing that I, as a German speaker and instructor, get a little tired of. (You were jokey about it, but still, it really does come up a lot.) Lots of languages have words that succinctly express things other languages don't. I don't think German has particularly more of them than other languages, and the must-be-a-word-for-that ends up more being a joke about the way compound nouns can get formed, along the lines of 'Haha, German words are so long!'


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 10:14 AM
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That's lovely and wonderful, clew. Congratulations!


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 10:18 AM
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Obviously, one can't argue with annoyance, but it seems to me that there's a specifically German thing here, and it's not just about length. I understand that kids used to play a compound word game -- you take turns building a word and when someone can't think of anything to add, they lose. That sounds too easy -- maybe a better challenge is to make it artful: create a word with both Messer and Fresser, that has a preset pleasing rhythm.

Maybe it is just length. All of us speakers of English can recall learning what was thought at the time to be the longest word.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 10:25 AM
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re: 122

I guess if more of us spoke/understood agglutinative languages, it'd be more, 'The Nahuatl/Inuit/Finns have a word for that.'


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 10:28 AM
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The Nahuatl have a word for 'He who stands behind someone else when a photograph is being taken, and makes rabbit ears with his fingers' , etc.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 10:30 AM
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We slam nouns together in English just like in German, we just leave spaces between them.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 10:34 AM
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120: I think most of my worry is that it is so far outside reasoning they recognize that they'll feel it as gloating, not celebrating, and that that will push them even farther away from my worldview.

Just catching up: I take it that you're marrying now in recognition of the legalization of same-sex marriage in your state, and you had declined to marry until that occurred. Why not say that, in brief, something like: 'in celebration of marriage equality for all, Dwarf Lord and I announce that we too will get hitched.'

In other words, what Sir Kraab wondered in 93. Erm, if the families are outright homophobic, I understand the concern. How bad are they?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 10:34 AM
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We could change it to "there must be a word for that in ASL"


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 10:38 AM
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I can see that would be annoying, Blume, although the particular history of philosophy and German still seems relevant -- there are Russian words in soil science, for instance.

Judith Martin has a newish book on severely mannerly weddings that are not about expressing yourselves as a couple. One of the Amazon reviews compared it to the current Post etiquette book by saying that Martin says, first make your guest list, then choose a venue that you can afford, possibly cake and punch in the VA hall; Post says, choose your venue, then make your list. Martin for me.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 10:41 AM
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it seems to me that there's a specifically German thing here, and it's not just about length

But the fact that you can put all those individual things together into a single word doesn't make it that different than having them separate. It doesn't get to a deeper unity of the concept or something.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 10:42 AM
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parsimon, the ones who are likely to come are of the 'I have a gay friend who I only mock for it behind his back and any laws protecting him would be taking something away from me' kind. There are some people who left the Catholic Church because it's too liberal. I assume they've written me off already -- eighteen years in sin! And an atheist!

Following the tradition of that wedding heebie went to with the leaky secret from half the families, I may make the funny post on Facebook and just assume the conservatives will get slow wind of it. Their social style tends to be strong on pretending no-one knows things everyone knows anyway.

Also also also, there are a dozen other half-reasons we are getting married now and not elsewhen, and we have straight long-since-married friends in WA who are stronger LGBQT activists than we are, so it's really more of a lightweight joke than not. Facebook it is.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 10:49 AM
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We hardly got married because there's marriage equality here but it was cool to 1. check the gender checkboxes on the license and 2. see the text of Margaret Marshall's decision up on a banner in city hall when we went in for the license.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 10:56 AM
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Uh, this is piffling about something I really don't know much about, but natural language words have meaning based partly on the contexts they've been used in, don't they? So the history of discourse in a language changes the available vocabulary.

Wierdest example I've ever met: the bottom-right button on Windows dialogs in Japanese in the 1990s said 'herupu' in the appropriating syllabary. I was astonished that there wasn't a polite phrase in four characters or less for 'I am puzzled', but was assured not, the very idea of requesting an explanation was American. ('OK?' someone added, and the interpreter laughed.)

In geomorphology class I think I counted thirty words for snow and we weren't specifically studying snow, just erosion. Some were Inuit, several Icelandic originally. Are they English words now? Geomorphological words?


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 10:57 AM
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Will you invite me, clew? I might even join Facebook. When I mock my gay friends it's only because I like mocking everybody, and when I get drunk at weddings I don't usually do anything I regret.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 10:57 AM
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I'd like to see a 3 word German haiku and a 5 word German limerick.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 10:58 AM
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There are, like, 130 signs in ASL for "expressive".


Posted by: Merganser | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 10:59 AM
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I'll start the Haiku:

Gotterdammurung


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:02 AM
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132.2: Got it. That's one branch of my family as well.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:02 AM
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Gesellschaftswissenschaften


Posted by: Merganser | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:06 AM
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Congratulations clew (and Dwarf Lord)!

That's just so much more awesomeness piled on top of Tuesday's awesome Sundae.


Posted by: Barry Freed | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:06 AM
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uberschadenfreud


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:08 AM
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Congratulations, clew!


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:11 AM
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Congratulations, clew! Was I the only one assuming the Dwarf Lord was male? Or is clew male? You all know each other in real life, don't you?


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:12 AM
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Everybody seems to joke about whores.

It's a side effect of rationing.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:13 AM
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In any case, I regret making assumptions about Dwarvish nobility titles.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:14 AM
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when I get drunk at weddings I don't usually do anything I regret.

The one time I did, it was during the reception, I think.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:14 AM
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Ok, a 3 word German haiku that expresses appropriate congratulations to clew and DL, recent changes, and the dozen half reasons. There ought to be German words for that, right?


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:15 AM
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(I now consider myself to have annoyed Blume sufficiently to take up all of my allowance for annoying anyone on the internet for the rest of the weekend. Adieu, mes cheris!)


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:18 AM
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Yes, I forgot to say, congratulations, clew!


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:22 AM
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The English word for haiku is poemwithapatternof5then7then5syllables. Oddly, the 5's have been silent in most dialects since the Great Numeral Shift. In order to prevent confusion, English speakers usually just say haiku.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:25 AM
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The Dwarf Lord and I are heterosexual, just pissy about details of the socially acceptable dyad, Eggplant.

There was a SFnal poetry form in the Gardner Dozois era, a quatrain with the third line one long word, but I can't remember the name of it.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:26 AM
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You all know each other in real life

There's that line someone is said to have said of Noether: 'I know her to be a great mathematician and believe her to be female.'


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:27 AM
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152.1: This conversation makes so much more sense now.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:36 AM
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'I know her to be a great mathematician and believe her to be female.'

I ripped that one off in a story, that is, made a crude simulacrum of it. The best I was capable of.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:43 AM
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It took me way too long to catch that clew and Dwarf Lord weren't the same sex. If you were actually holding off getting married until marriage equality was passed, I think it's a good idea to say so.

IMO there's no way to actually gloat about marriage equality, seeing as how it harms no one, so feel free to rub it in the face of opposers at every opportunity.


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:45 AM
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154: Yes, our conservative relatives could pretend we had come back into the fold. We kind of have, as facing middle-age and health care and whatnot makes us appreciate all the armatures of marriage. But being committed but not married forced us to think about what we thought was fair in a way that may not carry over to marriage, and if not, I'll miss that.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:48 AM
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152: Double-dactyl? Two quatrains, 7th line a single six-syllable word.


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:50 AM
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Eh, I've begun to fret a bit now. This is clew's wedding thread, but it revives something that's always deep in the background in parsimon life, which is to say that my brother is gay, and now HIV-positive. The extended family (uncle and aunt, cousins) do not officially know of the gayness -- my brother is closeted -- but since our mom died, I'm so aware of being the sole keeper of the information. Should my brother's HIV status become problematic, should he develop AIDS, I'd really like the rest of the family to be on hand. I don't want to carry it alone.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:52 AM
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Seventh or sixth line!


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:53 AM
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Jews for Christ

Jews for Jesus, actually. They're kind of hilarious when they're not incredibly annoying.

We slam nouns together in English just like in German, we just leave spaces between them.

Sometimes you've got to slam them gently.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:57 AM
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Right, that.


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:57 AM
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Or fifth line, no?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 11:57 AM
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Some very creditable examples.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 12:01 PM
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Oo, parsimon, several lumps of painful knowledge, for which sympathy. `do not officially know', yes. Is there a back-channel by which unofficial knowers make unofficial requests and negotiations? If he needs care, will the rest of the family be reliable if you describe the symptoms and never the cause?

Er, trivially, double amphibrachs seem to have inspired less silly poetry. The form worked well on ASCII pagers, presumably it would tweet.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 12:01 PM
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You mean because no one writes double amphibrachs?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 12:05 PM
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I've been struck by my own reactions over the last couple of years to people introducing their same-sex spouses as "my husband" or "my wife". Despite being queer and pro-marriage-equality I still find it startling to hear it. I wonder how much longer that will be the case.

I was playing the video game "Borderlands 2" recently, and there were two points in the story where characters in the game referred to same-sex relationships -- one, an incidental nameless character in a recorded message mentioned her wife; the other, a colorful (Victorian adventurer in spaaaaaaace!) character gave the player a quest to find out what happened to an old boyfriend of his. I hit both of these events within about an hour of each other in the middle of the game (the mission order isn't fixed, so other playthroughs would likely spread them out more). They felt somewhat tacked-on, like, "how can we acknowledge the existence of homosexual relationships in a value-neutral-or-slightly-positive way without having to alter any of the story we've already written". Still - slightly startling to me as a 43-year-old.


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 12:10 PM
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165: I've begun to think that I'm going to have to broach this, first with my brother, of course. I'll need his permission to discuss with aunt and uncle, and in fact he and I should do it together. For the record, his health is fine now, but there may come a day, and I don't think I can do it alone.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 12:13 PM
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Aw, parsimon, I don't know what would help with your aunt and uncle, but I do think you should talk about it with your brother. With cake and whiskey and the scouring wind of the declining year.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 12:21 PM
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168: Yep. For different reasons, isn't good for either of you.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 12:22 PM
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Late to the party, but: mazel tov, clew!


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 12:22 PM
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167.last: Since I'm a spry 41, I'm not easily startled. However, my boss is starting to communicate by text and this does scare me.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 12:22 PM
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172: What was before text communications? Interpretive dance?


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 12:29 PM
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169: Well, he can't really drink whiskey, but otherwise, yeah. Thanks for the corroboration. I wasn't sure if I was just freaking out.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 12:38 PM
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clew and Dwarf Lord should get married at Unfogged2013. I've married people before if you want to go full-on with the irony bit.


Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 12:39 PM
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173: Email.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 12:45 PM
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Sounds like a rough burden, parsimon. Hope you find a way to make it lighter. Also, good wishes for your brother's health. Tough stuff.


Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 12:48 PM
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177: It's fine, will. Lots of people are HIV-positive. I'm generally scared because my mom died a couple of years ago, so I'm afraid of people dying. I'm pretty sure my brother would tell me to stop freaking out. On the other hand, I'm not freaking out; just concerned.

You all have talked me down. Thanks.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 12:58 PM
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Parsi, do the other members of your family not know about your brother's HIV status, or just not know about his sexual orientation?


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 1:21 PM
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Both. They don't know of either of those things. Or rather, I'd find it remarkable if they haven't figured out by now that he's gay, but such things are never spoken of. They don't know about the HIV status.

I'm off for a while. I think it's about time we (my brother) has a conversation with my aunt and uncle, but that's going to be up to him.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 1:29 PM
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One of my close friends recently got straight-married, and did it in Connecticut, instead of here, because at the time, gay marriage was legal there, and not here, and also, it is the ancestral homeland. As part of the ceremony, a member of the wedding party read from Connecticut General Statutes chapter 815e the section authorizing same sex marriage, and defining marriage. It was very nice, although it left some people confused.


Posted by: Light Rail Tycoon | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 1:30 PM
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We've been to weddings where they read from the equivalent court decision in Massachusetts, which is really a lovely piece of writing about marriage in general.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 1:32 PM
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It's the must-be-a-word-for-that-in-German thing that I, as a German speaker and instructor, get a little tired of.

It is essentially no different from the 100 words for snow thing.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 1:36 PM
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I saw a Russian silent film where one of the intertitles took up the width of the screen with one word and they had to reduce the font to make it fit.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 1:40 PM
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Ok, Nahuatl must have a beautifully expressive word for the shame one feels upon not reading the intervening 50 comments and then realizing one is multiply pwned.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 1:41 PM
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But the fact that you can put all those individual things together into a single word doesn't make it that different than having them separate. It doesn't get to a deeper unity of the concept or something.

This is basically just repeating what Clew said in 134, but doesn't the fact that you're taking the spaces out make it more likely that this particular arrangement of words gets frozen in place, so to speak, and hence associations accrete around it in a more stable way? Whereas phrases only rarely acquire a canonical form--and when they do, it's often with the baggage of being someone's famous quotation.

I'm totally speculating, of course, knowing almost nothing about languages in general, or German in particular. Feel free to tell me I'm full of shit.


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 1:54 PM
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This is basically just repeating what Clew said in 134, but doesn't the fact that you're taking the spaces out make it more likely that this particular arrangement of words gets frozen in place, so to speak, and hence associations accrete around it in a more stable way? Whereas phrases only rarely acquire a canonical form--and when they do, it's often with the baggage of being someone's famous quotation.

Not really, no. The distinction between "word" and "phrase" is not actually as clear-cut as you might think, and of course varies between languages as well.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 1:56 PM
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159: If your brother has medical care, he's not very likely to develop AIDS. His doctor would put him on a HAART regimen a long time before he crossed either threshold for AIDS diagnosis. This treatment tends to be very effective and give people undetectable viral loads and allow them to live wholly asymptomatically.

Almost-subthread-merge, in that I am about to make a facile linguistic observation, you'll almost never hear anyone with HIV or AIDS in the populations I work with refer to AIDS without they should call it "full-blown AIDS." It's as if it were part of the name.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 2:00 PM
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I don't think spaces count for developing meaning by association (which, noted, I may still be making up); for one thing, always happy to argue for pen-rests instead of these conveniences for silent-reading moderns.

I have just set up an org-mode wedding planning list in a git repo.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 2:25 PM
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Just to reinforce what Smearcase said, data from the Lance suggests that life expectancy for a 20 y.o. HIV+ male in the US/Western Europe is 49.4 years, with some variation depending on mode of transmission and health status prior to treatment. In comparison, life expectancy for US males at age 20 is 59.0 years. (Both of these estimates are from 2008.) Further, even for those individuals who have become resistant to first-line drugs, effective second- or even third-line treatment remains available.


Posted by: extexan | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 2:26 PM
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Didn't finish the actual thought there. It's a fixed expression that would, meseems, let a string accrete meaning. I don't know if languages that agglute (?) easily regard those constructions as more or less flexible than their sentence constructions. But! when a rarely-word-constructing-language speaker learns a word, we are (I posit) likely to feel that word as relatively fixed, even if it wasn't to its original use-and-toss-asiders, and it gains solidity in its adoptive language. Symmetry-breaking (there, now I should have annoyed essear as well as Blume).


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 2:29 PM
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I don't know if languages that agglute (?) easily regard those constructions as more or less flexible than their sentence constructions.

I think they are, to a first approximation, part of their sentence constructions. That is, it's just an alternative way to construct a sentence, and no more fixed (absent some specific historical pattern of use) than any other combination of words.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 2:32 PM
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We seem to be getting at part of my problem here. German operates such that you can combine a bunch of words into a completely understandable compound word, but that doesn't make the word a fixed thing that you can find in a dictionary any more than the phrase describing that thing would be a fixed thing in English.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 2:39 PM
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Pwned, but only because I told him that earlier.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 2:43 PM
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So it makes no difference at all? Or the difference it makes it more subtle?


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 2:48 PM
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I think there are several different concepts being discussed in this thread regarding word formation, and some of the confusion stems from confusing or conflating them.

First, there are typological distinctions between languages that express meaning in different ways. Style of word formation ("lexicalization") is one key parameter in distinguishing types of languages. Agglutinative languages, such as Inuit, Nahuatl, and Finnish, tend to form words by combining long strings of morphemes in a relatively free or creative ("productive") manner. These are the languages where you get stuff like the 100 words for snow, where what's really going on is that there are lots and lots of ways of combining basic morphemes to express specific meanings. The result of this combination is what could be, and typically is, considered a "word," but it's not necessarily equivalent to an utterance that would be considered a word in a different type of language, and must typically be translated into one of those languages using a syntactically complex phrase rather than a single word.

A very different type of language is the inflectional type, to which English and German belong, in which for the most part words consist of individual morphemes or a very few morphemes in a very rigid order. In these languages a lot of the meaning is carried by syntax rather than morphology, and morphemes mostly can't be combined productively to a very great extent. Those descriptions are qualified, however, because many languages like this do allow considerable amounts of compounding, which gives some flexibility in creating words by combining existing words/morphemes in relatively productive ways. This is where the famous long German words come from. Note that this compounding in a language like German looks superficially like what agglutinative languages do, but that doesn't make German an agglutinative language. German and English are actually quite similar to each other typologically, which is unsurprising since they're so closely related. English has compound words too.

An additional issue that complicates this is just orthographic convention, and I think this is where most of the apparent differences between German and English lie. German compound words are conventionally written without spaces or hyphens, whereas English compound words more often use hypens or are spelled as multi-word phrases with spaces between the individual words, even if they are treated phonetically and syntactically as fixed units equivalent to compound words. Smearcase's example of "full-blown AIDS" might be an example of this sort of lexicalization in progress; if there's a German equivalent it would probably be written as a single word.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 2:51 PM
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And then of course there's the whole problem of defining "word" in the first place, and distinguishing it from "phrase." This is surprisingly hard, especially if you're trying come up with a definition that will apply to all languages instead of a just one.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 2:55 PM
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Thanks, Teo.


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 2:56 PM
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199

196 could be summed up in one word in a language I decline to name.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 2:57 PM
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200

So the English word for the thing you hate because it's nearly yourself is the-thing-you-hate-because-it's-nearly-yourself?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 2:57 PM
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201

100 to 200.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 3:00 PM
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Which is to say, yes.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 3:00 PM
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Hooray!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 3:04 PM
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I do think clew is right in 191 that when words get borrowed they tend to end up as fixed terms in the receiving language even if they weren't treated that way in the donor language.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 3:05 PM
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Only a member of the hoi polloi would think that.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 3:07 PM
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Said fake accent at The El Alhambra Inn.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 3:09 PM
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Does Nahuatl have a single word for the sweet feeling you have when you rip out your opponent's heart before a cheering throng and offer it up to a jaguar god? I'm asking for a friend.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 3:29 PM
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I don't think the Aztecs were so much about the jaguar gods. That seems like more of Mayan thing.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 3:31 PM
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207: That's called a delusion, Robert Halford.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 3:34 PM
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it's probably a synonym for "the sensation of being an entertainment industry lawyer"


Posted by: extexan | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 3:38 PM
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Almost-subthread-merge, in that I am about to make a facile linguistic observation, you'll almost never hear anyone with HIV or AIDS in the populations I work with refer to AIDS without they should call it "full-blown AIDS." It's as if it were part of the name.

I appreciate this use of "without".


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 3:40 PM
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Comity! at least among over-users⋅of⋅spaces.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 4:08 PM
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Re 200, would again like to stipulate that there's a difference between people I hate and people I would hate to be. For one thing, there are a lot of people I like doing things I could not pull off and shouldn't try.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 4:09 PM
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I always want to say:

Tragedy tomorrow!
Comity tonight!


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 4:12 PM
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Because the secret of comity is timing.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 4:14 PM
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This present batch of membrillo will doubtless be the best batch I have ever prepared.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 4:17 PM
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I cooked the quinces whole in the oven with just a bit of water—a technique I have used before, and which allows for the easy separation of the thereby-softened flesh from the hard seed-containing core. But this time, when I pulled the flesh away, I noticed, as I had not noticed before, the distinctive scent of almonds rising from the seedy core!


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 4:25 PM
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You know what they say about those Rosaceae, though.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 4:26 PM
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"The orchard didn't know if it was blooming for

The bitten cherry or the apple core (It did not know)."

Sung as an encore by... Medieval Baebes? It was great and I can't find any mention of it anywhere online.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 4:28 PM
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Despite this endogenous evidence of the harmony of the quince and the almond, I omitted to add any almond extract to the quince purée before putting it in the oven to reduce, electing rather to stick with a single vanilla pod and the zest of a lemon.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 4:31 PM
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The reason I am so confident that this batch will be superior, by the way (I know you've been wondering since 216) is that in all previous batches I merely put the quince through a food mill, whereas this time I composed passage through some very fine mesh with passage through the food mill, which is somewhat coarse.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 4:32 PM
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It seems I overestimated the interest this topic would hold.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 4:51 PM
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I was wondering, nosflow. I cooked mine whole the last time I made membrillo; it worked quite well.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 4:52 PM
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Robert Halford never returned to explain himself. A pity.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 5:20 PM
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188: Thanks, Smearcase.

190: I'm not sure how that reinforces what Smearcase said. life expectancy for US males at age 20 is 59.0 years. I grasp that HIV-positive people sometimes succumb to e.g. pneumonia rather than full-blown AIDS.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 5:56 PM
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parsimon, does your brother really have HIV?


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 6:00 PM
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Text, please try not to be an ass.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 6:00 PM
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The point I believe is that life expectancy for men with HIV is at most minorly reduced from men without.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 6:01 PM
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228 to 225, perhaps evidently.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 6:02 PM
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228: Oh, I'd misread. I thought the portion I quoted meant that the life expectancy for those who contracted HIV in their 20s, in the US, was 59. (It didn't make sense given the previous sentence of 190, granted.)

Reading too quickly.

I'm surprised that average life expectancy in the US (for those males who make it to 20) is 59, in any case. I think that may include some very unfortunate portions of the population.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 6:11 PM
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230: I think he meant 59 years after 20 (so 79).


Posted by: tulip | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 6:16 PM
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Oh. Well, now I'm completely confused, but if that's the case, I'm reassured. (Since my brother is now 43, a life expectancy of 49.4 years with HIV was concerning.)


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 6:30 PM
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Your brother's life expectancy is higher than (49.4 - (43 - 20)) anyway, because he's not just in the group 'HIV at 20', he's in the group 'HIV at 20 and survived another 23 years'. Clearly men who died at 23 were in the first group and brought down its overall life expectancy.

Going to be so pwned...


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 6:35 PM
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Changing the subject somewhat entirely, what kind of sauce would you make if you'd decided to have grilled salmon tomorrow night?

I was informed a short while ago that this household is harboring a house guest tomorrow into Monday. We'll grill salmon for dinner, but only, I'm told, if I know what to do about a sauce for it. Otherwise it'll be chicken.

I figure I'll just do grilled zucchini and the tried-and-true packets of potatoes+onions+garlic+ in tin foil, to go with.

Sauce?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 6:45 PM
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233.1: Right. Average life expectancy figures aren't very helpful in this circumstance.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 6:49 PM
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Sour cream and your favorite herb? ( Salmon and dill and borscht, yum.)


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 6:50 PM
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Yeah, one go-to is yogurt/sour cream and dill. For some reason I wanted to go with a green herby thing, I guess mostly because that goes better with the zucchini et al.

Something like olive oil and lemon juice, and mustard to plump it up, with fresh parsley? Too tangy?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 6:57 PM
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231 is right.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:02 PM
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You could also do a mustard sauce, mix it with oil and dill.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:09 PM
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Oh, which you just mentioned in 237b. So, yeah, I agree with that! I like grainy mustard with salmon, more than a hot mustard.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:11 PM
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Hot mustards suck.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:12 PM
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I don't have any grainy mustard in the house, god knows why, but I'll correct that. I wouldn't have thought that mustard goes with dill, though.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:17 PM
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Is there any way to incorporate kalamata olives into this?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:32 PM
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Always.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:46 PM
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With a blender?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 7:50 PM
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244: Say more. The only thing I'm seeing is a change in direction, toward a minced tomato and olive sauce/chutney, which is not really right for salmon, is it?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 8:03 PM
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So have it on some toast ("toasts") alongside.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 8:23 PM
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Possible. The truth is that I don't want this house guest, but it appears to be a done deal.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 8:29 PM
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Fish and visitors smell in three days .


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 8:40 PM
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I grasp that HIV-positive people sometimes succumb to e.g. pneumonia rather than full-blown AIDS.

Yeah, no. This is the whole thing. 1) You wouldn't end up getting pneumonia unless your immune system was already very compromised, i.e. unless you had AIDS*, which is unlikely to happen if he's receiving standard care for HIV. 2) you don't ever die of AIDS itself. You die of opportunistic infections.


*yes, people who don't have AIDS get pneumonia, but having HIV that was well-controlled would not put you at any heightened risk of it.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 8:45 PM
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There's a word in ASL that means this entire thread, but I'm not telling you what it is because you're all audists and you don't deserve to know.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 8:55 PM
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I imagine it would be difficult to convey textually (but maybe this is not so, I don't really know anything about ASL).


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 8:56 PM
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I just looked up the sign for "audist" so I can deploy it inappropriately.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 8:58 PM
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251: Nearly all my communication is written. Can you tell me?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 9:00 PM
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250 is correct. Everyone who dies of AIDS dies of an opportunistic infection, e.g. pneumonia.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 11-10-12 9:29 PM
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