Re: Lord Castock Sends Links

1

So Canada isn't run by a gay mafia?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 5:35 AM
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Beyond the part where they want to run an oil pipeline right by the ancestral Hick lands, I haven't been paying attention.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 5:38 AM
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As Castock said, from reading that I had literally no idea whether it was a joke or not, and if so, what kind. I suppose knowing anything at all about Canadian politics would have helped there.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 5:40 AM
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On the sibling thing, my brother and I fought, but we seem to have had an unspoken agreement not to punch. Because caring. My sisters and I never fought because they were too young to ever be contenders.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 5:55 AM
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My unspoken agreement with my brother was no punching in the face or kicking in the balls. Everything else though, which included some pretty rough stuff. I really did bully him pretty hard, which I feel guilty about today. On the plus side, we have a good relationship today and he later gave me credit for 'teaching him how to fight'.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 6:10 AM
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i hate LC sends links to unfogged i thought he left in solidarity with me


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 6:17 AM
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at how they treated me unfairly, really really ugl9 and i never got any ap///ologies too


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 6:18 AM
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and they say all the correctttt things about how they are not R and all, believe to people, on the internetsss of course, after then


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 6:19 AM
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so canadian commenters they cherish and all but i'm not welcome, the same mentality as with the bolivian presidential plane hijacking works there i guess


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 6:20 AM
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Wow, this really drives home how kind my girls are to each other. They grump about it when one wants to play with the other and the other wants to play alone, but that's about the extent of it. I did have to make them stop hitting each other with socks this morning, but that was because we really needed to get out of the house and not because feelings or bodies were getting hurt. And they immediately responded by putting their hands in their sock cuffs so the socks hung down like floppy paws and then sort of shake-slapping them in the direction of the other without actually making contact, which was adorable but also not a great use of our time.

I clicked through from the sibling bullying story to one about reducing sibling rivalry and found it interesting that it says, "We think that by encouraging siblings to feel like they're part of a team, and by giving them tools to discuss and resolve issues, parents can help their kids develop more positive relationships with each other, which can benefit everyone in the family[.]" My two have had the mantra "because we are A TEAM!" for most of their time together, though recently it's been that they need the same or equal things because they're twins, which is the same general concept. They are very different, but they get along so well and that amazes me, though I guess after reading these articles there are things I do to encourage it.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 6:35 AM
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The Canadian Gay Mafia would be a great name for a football team.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 6:40 AM
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Canada doesn't have enough downs to be used as a name for a football team.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 6:44 AM
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10: I think there are heavily age-driven dynamics; Sally and Newt have been more and less peaceable with each other at different ages, and it seems to be tracking fairly closely with what I remember as a kid: uncomplicatedly non-hostile through most of elementary school; close but with intervals of squabbling that got mildly violent in late elementary and middle school; and then no more violence but a certain amount of distance in high school. Doesn't mean it's going to be the same in every family, but I'd expect any sibling relationship to change over the years.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:04 AM
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13: Oh, I totally expect it to change drastically over time, especially once they share a room, but it amazes me that they went from being complete strangers to fully accepting one another as sisters so quickly. And actually Mara did a bit of pushing/biting early on and then again last week (their first week in camp) but Nia bit her back and that seems to have ended the situation for both of them.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:09 AM
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Armed siblings are polite siblings.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:10 AM
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Thalidomide: the leading cause of unpolite children.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:12 AM
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13: I was on my brother from the moment he got back from the hospital, I hospitalized him when he was a toddler. I think we fought physically on at least a weekly basis until we left home, then we immediately became good friends (is that weird?). We had lots of positive interactions too but the fighting never let up.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:30 AM
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I think I've mentioned this before, but I ran over my brother's arm with a car. It didn't break. Nor did the arm.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:31 AM
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It has to be said that, for an ostensibly straight guy, Ghostface Killah spends an inordinate amount of time worrying about the gender presentation of other guys.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:34 AM
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I think boys close in age (we were two years apart) must generate the most physical conflict. The story goes that the *day after my brother got back from the hospital* my Mom found me standing over his crib with a rolling pin to 'make him be quiet'. I understood the idea that there was now a competitor for parental resources.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:35 AM
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PGD, how did your parents deal with that? I think I would(/will?) have a hard time with that level and frequency of violence.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:40 AM
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[PGD is no fun]


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:44 AM
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I understood the idea that there was now a competitor for parental resources.

I don't think I ever felt that way when I was younger. Maybe because I had a brother before I could walk.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:44 AM
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Hospitalized is unusual, but toddler/preschooler on baby violence or attempted violence is pretty common IManecdotally basedO. Before four or five kids don't have a lot of restraint, and babies are annoying. Sally's low point as a big sister was hitting Newt in the face hard enough to slam his head back into the corner of the wall behind him when she was maybe 3.5 and he was 1.5. She thought they were unobserved, and yelled out "Newt fell down!", and then turned to see Buck having seen the whole thing from behind her.

Buck conveyed that if she ever did anything like that again, she'd regret it, and they managed not to fight much until things got conflictier again a couple of years ago.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:46 AM
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13: That certainly tracked my memories of squabbles with my sisters. Being in the middle, I recall sort of pivoting from squabbling with my elder sister (who did physically dominate me a bit) to squabbling with my younger sister around 5th or 6th grade.

Whatever pattern my kids had I seem to have forgotten the details. Nothing too much really, I think because my daughter (in the middle) was not at all a fighter. My youngest was physically aggressive as all get out until he grew out of it at about age 11* but a lot of that got channeled into sports.

*He's almost preternaturally mellow now. Which is not necessarily serving him well in the winner-take-all economy. "Where's the Energizer Bunny of Rage now when it would work for you?" I gently ask him from time to time.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:47 AM
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23: Yeah, as someone who spent a fair amount of time leaping ineffectively onto my sister and trying to kill her at nine or ten (I never had a shot of doing much damage -- the size and strength differential was always absurd. But I tried.) competing for parental resources doesn't feel as if was a driving force at all.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:48 AM
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21: lots of swooping in to break us up if they were there (often not), lots of lectures, occasional punishment, but there was a limited amount that could be done I think. I got the brunt of the parental heat because I was always the most visible escalator -- he would often needle me until I blew up, he had nothing to gain from a full-on fight because I was stronger.

As I said, we did have some implicit rules and boundaries, the hospitalization was kind of accidental -- pushed him off a chair. But I feel pretty bad about it all now. Wish I had had a better outlet for my temper.

22: redact please, thanks (I'm being paranoid but still).


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:50 AM
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My youngest was physically aggressive as all get out until he grew out of it at about age 11

My dad describes something similar about himself - that he flew into rages throughout childhood, and then it just drained out of him when he hit adolescence, and he's been mellow yellow ever since. He is exceedingly mellow.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:51 AM
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I don't think 'competition for parental resources' is a *conscious* thought kids have. But the idea that the sibling is a barrier to you getting your way in the family home and having everything the way you want it is there at a really primal level I think. Of course 'parental resources' is just one part of that.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:53 AM
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Does he smoke? I was very aggressive until I discovered nicotine. When I quit, the aggression came back.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:53 AM
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30 to 28.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:54 AM
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27: Oh, I sent my brother to the ER when I was 4, accidentally knocked down a shelf that held plates, one of which fractured and sliced his face pretty nastily. I still feel horrible about it and remember how upset I was that night. I don't think I was ever particularly violent to my little brothers, nor were they over the top with each other, though the verbal teasing by them to me and to each other got bad at times.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:54 AM
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he would often needle me until I blew up, he had nothing to gain from a full-on fight because I was stronger.

Heh. We were sort of the opposite. She was so much stronger than I was that she could (a) needle and (b) get her way with non-obviously violent force (e.g., if we were arguing over an object, she could simply take it without having to fight about it), and that would on occasion make me mad enough to start swinging despite the inevitable loss. I never claimed to have good judgment.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:55 AM
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I think boys close in age (we were two years apart) must generate the most physical conflict.

My younger twin brothers would I guess be a limit case, and they have indeed been beating on one another for nearly 40 years now (fortunately, rarely anything too serious--though there was one ER visit I can recall--and with a sharp dropoff in frequency some time in early adulthood).


Posted by: potchkeh | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:55 AM
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I semi-accidentally broke my younger sister'sleg when she was 6 and I was 10. I intended to push her, did not intend serious injury. She had a full-leg cast for much of first grade. Since then we've gotten along better.


Posted by: unimaginative | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:55 AM
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29: My son hates his cousins, for reasons like that. It's really obvious because if pay any attention to them at all, he lashes out. But he only sees them a few times a year and he's used to being the only kid around. I grew up continually surrounded by other kids.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:56 AM
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29: Still, even in hindsight, there wasn't much to compete for. Materially, things were pretty abundant, and to the extent there was scarcity, the limiting factor was clearly what Mom and Dad thought was appropriate rather than that there would have been more if she hadn't been there. Direct parental attention? Again, there was plenty, and I was more likely to be evading it than seeking it out.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:57 AM
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37: That's how I recall thinking also. In fact, I was always upset at how much less supervised my younger siblings were at any age than I was at that age.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:59 AM
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I think it's also the safety of knowing your sibling will be there tomorrow, and the next day, etc, so you don't have to court them like you do a friend, and you can just unleash your id on them.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:01 AM
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I was bullied pretty mercilessly by my five-years-older brother until I got to be big enough to fight back. This didn't scar me, and he and I were pretty close for decades until I came to grips with the fact that he's just kind of an asshole.

The whole competition-for-resources thing never made any intuitive sense to me. I had seven siblings, and wanted more. Both of my kids would be happy with more siblings, and they generally get along with each other really well.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:01 AM
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Which would imply that Mara and Nia would have a smoother path, because they're less likely to take each other for granted.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:02 AM
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Yeah, Dr. Oops was much more defiant about limits and curfews and supervision than I was, and wore Mom and Dad out. By the time she was in college and I was the only kid home, I was getting away with stuff she'd never dreamed of fighting for without having to make an issue of it at all. Drove her nuts: there was one incident where she was home on a visit, and I got a call at maybe 9 on a Friday night, saying that some friends were going out to a club (could have been CBGBs, but I think it was someplace else shortlived in the East Village). I told Mom and Dad I was going out and would be home late, and they told me to be sure to take a cab home: Dr. Oops was too stunned to even react, but has been bringing it up at intervals ever since. She'd never have gotten open ended permission to go out that late.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:03 AM
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This discussion is relevant to our decision on whether to give little PGD, jr a sibling. I have been leaning against for somewhat selfish reasons, but part of it is my sense that during childhood at least a sibling can be a bit of a mixed blessing...during adulthood better.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:04 AM
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42 to 38.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:04 AM
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43: I'd suit yourself rather than try to game out how it'll work out for the kid. Only kids do fine, some kids love having siblings, some hate it, some don't interact with them much -- there's no way to tell ahead of time.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:05 AM
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Unbeknownst to me, my mom fought hard to secure the same privileges for me as my brothers got, specifically concerning high school freedoms and late night situations. (She won.)


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:07 AM
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41: I don't know if that's entirely true. They certainly see siblings as disposable in some respects, because this will be the first time they've had siblings who stayed with them long-term and eventually permanently. Within a month, Mara saw Nia as sister in a way I don't think she ever did during Val and Alex's six months, though maybe because she and Nia are both black or because Val and Alex were so obviously each other's siblings and more like her playmate. But it's very complicated, and it's hard for them sometimes to understand the dividing lines between siblings, cousins, and friends, all of whom can feel like siblings to them sometimes.

The only place where they explicitly worry that there's not enough love or attention to go around is that it's hard for either of them to watch me do the other's hair. And since they both rassinfrassin ripped their new hairstyles out during enforced quiet rest time yesterday, I guess they're going to just have to suck it up and deal with it. For Mara, especially, this is a deep and upsetting betrayal, but I think that's because hair time stands in for a lot of more general nurture for both of them and they both do know that sometimes parents stop caring for you or can't do it consistently, so they don't take parental love or care for granted the way other kids might.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:10 AM
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Newt's already getting more freedom than Sally did at the same age. It's strictly unfair, but with Sally we sort of gradually felt out what we were comfortable with in terms of letting her loose on the subway at what hours and so on, whereas with Newt, we had Sally as a reference point, and so we could say "Sally has been doing this for a year, no problem, even though Newt's two years younger than she is, we know what he's like compared to what she's like now, so we know he can handle it."


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:11 AM
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46: If you never found out you got those privileges, does it really matter?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:13 AM
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hair time stands in for a lot of more general nurture for both of them

Man, this is alien. I hated having my hair brushed more than anything else, and Sally's the same: very attached to having a giant, unkempt mane, but really resistant to any help dealing with it. The idea that a kid sees "Sit still for an hour while I try unsuccessfully to avoid pulling your hair" as a positive is strange. Maybe you're just better at not hurting them than either I was or my parents were.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:15 AM
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My brothers and I fought like wolves. When I was maybe 5, my older brother hit me in the head with a rock the size of his fist so hard I needed stitches. Another time (I was maybe 11?) the same brother chased me down the hall with an axe, and when I got in the bedroom and locked the door before he could catch me, he literally began chopping at the door with the axe. I kid you not.

Usually we didn't actually get to that level, but I still remember my childhood as a really horrible experience.

To be fair, I also beat the crap out of both my brothers often enough. I don't remember ever trying to kill either of them, though.

This is, in fact, though, a big factor in my having only one child.


Posted by: delagar | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:19 AM
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What did your parents do after the axe-incident?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:20 AM
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When we were in the recovery room after the birth of our son, a nurse asked us if we planned to have another. We said we weren't sure, and she said you have to have another child. Her husband was an only child, she explained.

As it worked out, I think our son benefits a lot from having a little sister, but the benefits to her of having an older brother are, at a minimum, more subtle.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:21 AM
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50: Partly it might be that they had painful hair experiences in the past, but I think it's also that the girl getting her hair done sits in my lap (not really the most effective setup time-wise, but I started the precedent with Mara and have to follow through with it now) and gets all my attention and is able to have unlimited screen time until hair is done. I work very hard to be gentle and don't do any braids or twists tightly enough that the hair is pulled so tight it might fall out because of the tension, which is one reason my styles don't look as "tidy" as professional styles do. I mean, plenty of professional stylists can make tidy, perfect cornrows that aren't actually pulling the hair, but both girls have also had classmates with traction alopecia, in Mara's case as young as 3, and we are not messing with that.

But gawd, the amount of time I've spent on hair these past 3 years is probably equivalent to a part-time job. On the other hand, they both have hair that's growing, which is a sign it's healthy and cared for appropriately. It's just a lot of work to keep up with it, especially now that they swim every day.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:23 AM
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51: IIRC, he's become a rather troubled adult, too, no?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:24 AM
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Maybe he'd just seen The Shining right before?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:26 AM
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My sister and I fought a fair bit when we were kids. She was much nastier than me [in the sense of being prepared to go to greater lengths], and also more argumentative and snappy [still is*], so often I was the one who backed down first. Until we got to our mid-teens, when I'd finally had enough and snapped. I didn't lay a hand on her but I did slam the door to her room so hard I drove the wood right into the frame, and left her unable to open the door. It was a fairly decisive show of strength that ended violence as an approach she wanted to adopt. It was pretty clear that any attempt at violence on her part would now end very badly.

She's selectively forgotten a lot of her own teenage behaviour, though, so I expect if you asked her now, she'd still think she had a good chance of beating me in a fight.**

* we get on well now, but I'm definitely by far the more mellow.
** she wouldn't.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:29 AM
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Be careful. She may have an axe.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:33 AM
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My husband's sister once chased him down a hall with a kitchen knife and stabbed it through the (thin, wooden) door when he slammed it in her face. She's not floridly insane as an adult so I assume it was a moment of poor judgment.


Posted by: Dilma Rousseff | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:36 AM
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Solid-core doors: Helping keep kids safe from each other.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:38 AM
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One sibling with an axe is scary bullying. Two siblings with axes can strengthen themselves in combat until the day comes to set sail from the North in search of plunder and glory.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:40 AM
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My sister (3 years younger) had fake crying down to an art. My parents and everyone else knew this to be the case, but somehow it still worked a good portion of the time anyway. We'd get into some sort of fight that mildly physically escalated, she'd fake cry, I would be reprimanded by an adult, adult would leave, and my sister would immediately cease the "crying" and give me the look of triumph. Which would cause me to really physically attack her. I had nothing but scorn for the real tears that then resulted: hadn't she asked for it?


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:40 AM
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hadn't she asked for it?

Yes.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:42 AM
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My brother was an off-and-on bully throughout my childhood. We fought physically, but he also insulted me mercilessly about being ugly and friendless. The worst, though, was when he got it in his head that it was funny to see me scared. So he'd let me think I was home alone for an hour or so and then jump out from behind a corner. It was really insane, and definitely contributed to my childhood depression and anxiety. It also made me quite accustomed to physical violence, and having to fight back. As an adult, I had to retrain myself to stop hitting. There have been a few times in my life when I've hit someone in self-defense, but a few other times, when I was in college, I just lost control and punched someone. It's not OK! It's assault!

That "soft rappers" thing is the most misogynistic shit I have read in a long time.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:43 AM
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More largely, I think being a bullied sibling can contribute to the sense that your body is not yours to make decisions about. Whoever is bigger and stronger gets to do what he wants to you, and you have to learn to take it, and then not be a tattle-tale about it later unless you want more abuse. That's a lesson I really wish I hadn't learned.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:45 AM
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This thread is making me very happy (not for the first time) that I'm an only child.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:45 AM
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65: Mmm. I wasn't bullied by Dr. Oops (that is, I lost all the physical fights, but I probably started more than half), so I'm not agreeing with this on the basis of direct experience, but it rings true to me. I really don't like things like parent-on-child involuntary tickling on for similar reasons.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:50 AM
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I really don't like things like parent-on-child involuntary tickling on for similar reasons.

Or mandatory hugs and kisses!


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:51 AM
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66: There are real benefits (not universal, but nothing is). While I was saying that competition for parental resources, specifically, wasn't something I remember as an issue, I think it's useful empathy-building for a kid to know that there are other people whose feelings and interests matter, and siblings are one good way to get there. A default playmate, a source of advice from someone who's close enough to your problems to have a thick understanding of what's going on (particularly dealing with parents); you can get along fine without siblings, but there are definitely benefits.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:54 AM
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64.last: For real. And Kanye, at least, has already answered the charge many times. "Old [colleagues] mentally still in high school/ Since the tight jeans they never liked you/ Pink-ass polos with a fucking backpack/ But everybody know you brought real rap back."


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:56 AM
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My brother is 2 years younger brother, bigger than me from early on, and I don't remember any violence in the early years; there was a phase around late elementary / middle school, but all wrestling without hitting. I wonder if he remembers it that way, though.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:58 AM
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I think situations where the younger kid is bigger are likely to be at the minimal end of violence. The older kid has more emotional and intellectual maturity to manipulate with, and has the sense to know that violence is likely to turn out badly, so the older kid keeps things calm.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:59 AM
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I impose mandatory hugs and kisses on my kid, not to mention mandatory tossing in the air, and I'm not apologizing for it! Notions of bodily autonomy taken from contract law are totally unsuited to childrearing...but seriously, I think the difference with bullying is that there is an implicit attention to the child's response in physical interactions between parent and child. IOW, when the kid starts kicking and squirming he gets put down.

Another time (I was maybe 11?) the same brother chased me down the hall with an axe, and when I got in the bedroom and locked the door before he could catch me, he literally began chopping at the door with the axe. I kid you not.

my brother once took refuge in the bathroom and locked the door, then continued mocking me from behind the locked door, at which point I kicked the door down. I still remember the horrified look on his face as I came through the splintered door. But I was sobered by destroying the door so I didn't hit him too hard, and then we cooperated on a lie for the parents re the causes of the door being off its hinges.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 9:04 AM
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19, 64.last, 70: yeah, my reaction was definitely "holy aggressive policing of masculinity, Batman!" I found it particularly sad when he said something along the lines of, "It's okay to play with femininity, but not if you're trying to represent hip-hop and be mainstream." Sigh.


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 9:07 AM
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The interior door locks in every house I've lived in are those ones that you can unlock from the outside with a straightened paperclip or whatever. The point is to keep somebody from walking in while you're on the toilet, not to provide protection from an angry relative.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 9:08 AM
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Also, I was a terribly bratty younger brother, and once stabbed my sister with a pencil when we were fighting in the back seat of a car, and would probably have been much worse if she weren't always taller and stronger than me.


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 9:08 AM
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73.last: and then we cooperated on a lie for the parents re the causes of the door being off its hinges.

I think cooperating on lies to adults when there is a fuck-up is one of the potential "real benefits" of siblings. Working together* to subvert powerful authorities. Among my fondest childhood memories, maybe because I was *always* lying to m yparents and it was good to pull someone else in from time to time.

*Of course betrayal cuts even deeper.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 9:12 AM
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I think the difference with bullying is that there is an implicit attention to the child's response in physical interactions between parent and child. IOW, when the kid starts kicking and squirming he gets put down.

I think your last sentence saves it -- if you let the kid go when they object, it's not involuntary -- but I see a lot of tickling where the interaction explicitly involves restraining the person being tickled. And, you know, all in good fun and it's hard to say that you disapprove of that kind of thing without sounding as if you're making veiled accusations of sexual abuse (which, to be clear, I'm not). But I do think that there is a risk that the message the kid picks up is that stronger people get to do what they like to you, and if you can't physically stop them it's your job to take it good-humoredly.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 9:12 AM
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78: Yeah, I always hated being tickled (probably much more than most), and the trouble with tickling is that there is an involuntary laugh and smile response (which makes it hard to express objections), even when inside one is feeling sheer paralyzing terror.

My parents figured it out eventually and stopped, but more casual acquaintances sometimes took a while to catch on - if ever.

I am now only beginning to alieve that I can trust people to stop doing something to me if I tell them to.

I am probably a weird edge case and it's likely not worth changing one's interactions with kids based on this anecdata, but I personally would be very reluctant to tickle a kid, and extremely reluctant to tickle someone preverbal, without STRONG cues that it is wanted.


Posted by: Benquo | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 9:29 AM
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In my family, there was a lot of unwanted tickling, but we did have a firm belief in "calf-rope." Damned near saved my life. I've never heard it said outside my family, but I am delighted to see it exists on the internet.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 9:32 AM
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It's like you people want kids to grow up without any fetishes at all.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 9:42 AM
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I was *always* lying to my parents

Me too.

My siblings and I shared a policy that we would avoid lying on each other's behalf. We would generally feign ignorance - or actually be ignorant - when confronted by our parents about our siblings' behavior.

Our friends sometimes misunderstood this - how could you not lie for each other? - but the actual point was to be more effective liars.

After all, if you have to coordinate a lie with your siblings. there's a much greater chance of getting tripped up.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 9:42 AM
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Boy is this thread making me feel a-ok about Jane's only-childishness right now. Thanks, guys!


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 9:43 AM
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I impose mandatory hugs and kisses on my kid, not to mention mandatory tossing in the air, and I'm not apologizing for it!

Word. My girls love chasing down their little cousins (my brother's boys) for mandatory hugs but it's all pretty good natured. The scaring as traumatic is also a totally foreign concept. My girls hide and scare each other all the time. I'm much harder to startle and they're especially gleeful if they can get a reaction out of me.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 9:47 AM
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I more meant "mandatory" as in when they have to hug adults goodbye or accept kisses. And again, I'm not coming from the same place as a parent as everyone else here. I hold to the rule in my own interactions, while Lee doesn't, but we're both consistent in encouraging the girls to say "no, thank you" if they don't want to kiss or hug someone else, including each other, and they're encouraged to get permission before touching people's bodies, which is more to get them used to the idea than because I expect them to follow through every time.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 9:55 AM
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I more meant "mandatory" as in when they have to hug adults goodbye or accept kisses.
Good lord I hated this as a kid.
I'm pretty sure I make my dog laugh when I tickle him. Science seems less sure, outside primates.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 10:00 AM
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The problem was adults are ugly and they smell funny.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 10:02 AM
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I didn't have siblings but I used to beat myself up pretty good.

Anyhow it is impossible to make judgments about family size based on one's own experience because everybody has only really experienced on configuration but I was pretty damn lonely a lot of the time as a kid.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 10:04 AM
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I was pretty damn lonely a lot of the time as a kid.

So was I, but (and I realize this is impossible to actually know to any degree) I don't think having had siblings would have made much of a difference on that front. Maybe it would have helped to have someone else share the sense of dislocation I got from moving all the time though?


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 10:12 AM
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About tickling. I was tickled too much as a kid. How much? Dunno. It was enough that I learned how not to be ticklish. I can turn off the feeling and I always do (because I hate to be tickled). I feel it and, click, I stop the reaction. (Now that I am old I don't have occasion to do this very often.)


Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 10:16 AM
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I also decided not to be ticklish at some point. I think it has actually come back a bit since I don't have to use the trick anymore.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 10:17 AM
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90.last: Clearly we missed an opportunity at Unfogeddodecacon.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 10:21 AM
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I don't think having had siblings would have made much of a difference on that front.

That's nuts. The four of us (my siblings and I) were all born within a 5 year period and we were always running around outside and swimming and stuff. Likewise my girls are under two years apart and even with both being in high school come fall they still do things together. This morning they got up and fixed themselves breakfast smoothies and then went downstairs to play Call of Duty or something.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 10:23 AM
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19: I'm finding GFK funny in almost the way I used to find the TimeCube guy funny. Except I have the feeling he's consciously taking it OTT:

This nigga has developed his own science when it comes to that shit....its "quantum failure" nahmean. This nigga can fail without even bein awake yo. Son can fail in a dream n bring that shit back wit him to his conscious state namsayin. The nigga can inception fail his way thru life. The nigga can find the fail buried 4 levels deeper under the failure that you actually see. The nigga can fail about 78 times per heartbeat g. In fact by the time you finish readin this sentence the nigga will have failed approximately 468 times namsayin. This nigga is usin methods of failure that niggas aint even seen since the ancient Mayans n Egyptians was on earth still yo. This nigga is usin approaches to failin that brought upon the destructions of entire ancient civilizations son. Think its a game yo? This nigga takes his failure very fuckin seriously son. He dont want no failures happenin unless he involved. No chains snatched...no faces smacked...no nothin. A nigga falls off his bike in the park....he wants IN.

That is a thing of beauty, right there.


Posted by: Lord Castock | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 10:27 AM
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Far as the sibling bullying thing, it's a legit question LB brings up: how do you really tell the difference between actual bullying and ordinary harmless rough-housing... especially if (as is probably often the case) the really nasty stuff is probably happening when you're not around?


Posted by: Lord Castock | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 10:31 AM
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94 is the only thing he says that isn't about how disgusting femininity is.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 10:34 AM
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93: You've never spent a lot of time around people with whom you don't click at all? I don't know about you, but that only makes me more lonely than being by myself does.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 10:39 AM
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I hate the forced hugs and kisses. My friends with kids live nearish to my hometown, which means that I see them every other year. The kids are awesome and warm up to me pretty fast (I send notes and presents, but they're not quite old enough to make the connection), but it just hate that my friends insist that they walk up to a virtual stranger and give me a hug, especially when they're going through a shy phase. And they're so pushy about it. "Give Auntie a hug! Come on, don't hurt Auntie's feelings!" Yuck.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 10:41 AM
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Not quite only (cf. his remarks on Soulja Boy: "This nigga done splashed hisself wit enough water from the fountain of coonery to last 12 lifetimes" [which does strike me as true]). But I'm not saying he's enlightened or anything; there's as much fun to be had laughing at him as with him. That's partly why he reminds me of TimeCube guy.


Posted by: Lord Castock | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 10:41 AM
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99 to 96.


Posted by: LC | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 10:42 AM
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97: "Don't click with at all" would be an unusual reaction to a sibling, at least as a kid, I'd think. Conflicty, maybe, not sharing a lot of interests is possible, but I think they're very very likely to be close enough to you that you can get inside each other's heads. As an adult you can grow apart, but I can't think of siblings I know who just didn't click.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 10:43 AM
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I am very big into not ever telling Jane to hug or kiss anyone, just asking if she'd like to. In practice, we more often have to prevent her from leaping onto everyone she meets.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 10:46 AM
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I've forgotten exactly what it was, but remember how, I dunno, 15 years or so ago there was some popular website that you could run webpages through and they would come out in Swedish chef speak or redneck speak or something? I feel like this Ghostface Killah text has been run through an automated filter like that, like the "nahmean"s and "namsayin"s don't appear to have been put in by a human but are randomly dispersed, a little too liberally, by some algorithm.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 10:47 AM
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103: Yeah. It reads to me like he wrote a lot of the sentences in isolation from each other and sort of pieced together the jokes he thought were funniest. I don't get the sense that he's all that good at prose writing.


Posted by: Lord Castock | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 10:54 AM
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People really seem to go of on drake too. I don't see the problem.


Posted by: lemmy caution | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 10:55 AM
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Drake doesn't strike me as someone who is *trying* to be hard. I'm not an expert, but it feels like criticizing Prince for wearing blouses. It's sort of missing the point.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:01 AM
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As an adult you can grow apart, but I can't think of siblings I know who just didn't click.

My brother and I are six years apart. As kids we mostly got along but we're relatively separate just because of the age difference. I would say that we became much closer after we were both adults.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:06 AM
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Criticizing hip-hop in 2013 for not being "hard" is . . . I guess that's why Castock is laughing at it? Still, I'm having a hard time laughing at it in a Time Cube/OMG this dude is so fucking stupid way.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:08 AM
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People both go off on, and goof on, Drake.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:11 AM
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On only children vs siblings, my sister and I aren't close at all and haven't been since I was a teenager. At one point, my parents sat me down and told me to try harder to be close to my sister because she was all the family I'd have after they were gone. I suspect she never had a similar conversation. They very purposely had two kids (environmentally friendly) four years apart since that was what the experts at the time recommended for optimal sibling compatibility. A few years ago, they decided to start trying to have family vacations with us and our SOs. Luckily, she's been otherwise occupied since 2011. I didn't want to be the first to disappoint them (older child).


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:12 AM
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told me to try harder to be close to my sister because she was all the family I'd have after they were gone.

And the executor of their will knows just what to do should they die and you have a spouse and/or kids.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:17 AM
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Way, way off topic: I'm at a pub in London waiting for Ginger Yellow to show up. What words do I use to ask for a bathroom that will make it sound like I understand British English?


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:17 AM
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Where's the toilet?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:19 AM
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113 to 112


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:19 AM
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Aluminium. Mind the gap. Kind chap.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:19 AM
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If you want to be extra polite, "Excuse me, where's the toilet?"


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:20 AM
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Cheerio. Jolly good.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:20 AM
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(Thanks)


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:21 AM
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In a pub, I always heard it called the bog. Maybe you're in a nicer pub than I was known to frequent.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:22 AM
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I hate tickling and was very over-tickled as a child. Most memorable: friend of the family is tickling me, and I say "I'm going to have an accident!" and I get more and more panicky. I was probably four - old enough to find an accident severely embarrassing, let alone peeing on somebody.

Anyway, everyone thought my pronouncement was very funny, and he kept tickling me, and I peed all over him. Everyone found that just jolly hilarious! He got his just desserts! I was horrendously embarrassed and upset and mad.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:25 AM
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"Bog" is private school/Russel Group university. "The Ladies/The Gents" is middle class. "The toilet" is classless. I don't know what sort of pub EM is in.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:25 AM
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81 to 120.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:27 AM
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But forgot the coda: our kids seem to love being tickled. As in, they ask for more when you stop. I'm always very, very careful not to prolong any particular bout.

Also, I also don't like mandatory kisses and hugs. But what does drive me crazy is when the kids (particularly Hawaii, being oldest) won't verbally acknowledge someone who is talking to her or giving her a compliment. I want her to mumble "thanks" and keep hiding, that's all.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:28 AM
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121: I was at a non-Russell Group university.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:29 AM
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Whatever sort it is, they seemed to understand me.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:29 AM
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Also, the Russell Group didn't yet exist when I was there.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:30 AM
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(It's the Mucky Pup, in Islington. Come hang out with us!)


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:30 AM
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127. I'm 200 miles north of you.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:31 AM
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GY is here now and we both have beer. Things are looking up.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:34 AM
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Hi, GY. Is it a decent gaff, what brew do they do there? (Where is it anyway?)


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:43 AM
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I'm pretty sure I make my dog laugh when I tickle him. Science seems less sure, outside primates.

Just call it a lifestyle choice.

'There are now animal brothels in Germany,' Martin told the paper, adding that people were playing down the issue by by describing it as a 'lifestyle choice'.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:44 AM
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I'm kind of conflicted about Lil Wayne. Flow I guess is the word, he's definitely got a way with words, but I've never heard anything of his where he has something to say. Haven't listened to all that much, though.

I'm a little surprised that he doesn't object to Childish Gambino's nerdery, or is that not even hippety-hop for GFK?

My other big conflict with hiphop is with the tough talk-- Music that I'm basically ashamed of listening to just isn't worth it.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:44 AM
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120: In general, adults are much to eager to laugh at children when they make mistakes. Maybe some kids react to this attention positively, but I remember being horribly ashamed when the room erupted in laughter when I said something wrong.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:46 AM
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131:

There are even 'erotic zoos' which people can visit to abuse animals ranging from llamas to goats.

Is it wrong that my reaction to "ranging from llamas to goats" is "ran the gamut of emotions from A to B"? Surely an erotic zoo priding itself on the breadth of its offerings could go beyond herbivorous quadrupeds.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:48 AM
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133: I promise we'll be nicer next time you come to a meetup.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:49 AM
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134: Jellyfish tank?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:53 AM
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136: Dinosaurs? We know there's interest out there, and through the magic of cladistics, we know how to get our hands on live ones.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 11:54 AM
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Regardless of cladistics, everyone is going to be thinking "chicken fucker."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 12:02 PM
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135: You say that now, but when the time comes you won't be able to resist how adorably clumsy I am.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 12:03 PM
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101: I basically didn't connect in any meaningful way with my sister until I was almost done with college - I was back visiting my parents and friends on vacation, and realized that my sister is actually a pretty cool person.


Posted by: Benquo | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 12:07 PM
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139 to 138.


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 12:14 PM
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132.1: Having nothing to say is about right. Lil' Wayne is also notable for having used Emmett Till's death as the basis for a sexual lyric (Google his name and Till's name and you can find the reference to the incident), which, totally not cool.

132.2: Far as I can see GFK doesn't have anyone in his crosshairs for indulging in nerdery or comedy... both of which were staples of the Wu-Tang repertoire anyway.

133.3: Hip-hop has always had an air of braggadoccio about it that has almost become reflexive... which provides no shortage of rappers whose actions don't match up with mack-daddy images and rhetoric for GFK to make fun of. (I'm with Melle Mel on this one.)

Note that GFK has produced no shortage of skilled but ultimately empty lyrics of his own about running through bitches, snorting cocaine and acting gangster. He's kind of a case of someone who was able to perform this image seamlessly taking people to task for failing to do so... or in a few cases maybe not trying to. There's a certain extent, as with his comments on K. West, where maybe the genre itself is just evolving beyond the parameters that defined his own career.


Posted by: Lord Castock | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 12:25 PM
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138: But you fuck one theropod.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 12:30 PM
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It would be less confusing if the "bird-hipped" dinosaurs evolved into bird instead of the "lizard-hipped" ones. Either evolution sucks or whoever names things is a chicken fucker.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 12:39 PM
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144 -- FIST BUMP. Confusing as fuck.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 12:41 PM
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Although, technically, "lizard hipped" dinosaurs didn't evolve into birds -- birds are lizard hipped dinosaurs, eat me Urple and more revisionistically Stormcrow.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 12:48 PM
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Theropod hips lie, unlike those of Shakira.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 12:49 PM
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Eating revsionistically is bulimia.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 12:53 PM
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My late mother was totally a victim of sibling bullying from her older brother, and it definitely damaged her in a way that she was very aware of and articulate about. It also, eventually, damaged her relationship with her parents. I used to understand it as being an expression of Indian misogyny, but given more experience with my incredibly female-dominated clan, I think it was actually a much more personal and pathological problem. In some ways it was the root of a lot of the problems in her life. It was a *huge* problem when her mother was dying/died, b/c it just got in the way. It continued well into their 50s when she finally cut him off completely at our insistence, despite strong pressure from her sense of duty and extended family pressure not to do so, and her genuine love for her nieces. I accepted condolences from and wrote back to almost everyone, including colleagues and previous friends who had been quite shitty to her, but not my uncle. I was surprised at how much genuine rage I felt towards him for messing up her life. On the other hand, I'm not so sure she would have been so excited about emigrating and settling here (and therefore having me) if not for the dynamic it caused, so I guess . ..yay? And it certainly made her a more adventurous person than I think she would have been otherwise. It's a weird counterpoint to my incredibly close and loving relationship with my own sibling---I think I have a very dichotomous view on sibling relationships as a result. I totally idealize the sort of sibling dynamic that's in To Kill A Mockingbird, but I'm also very uneasy about the idea of having a boy and a girl b/c of my uncle. When I fantasize about having children it's certainly the issue that freaks me out the most, even more than dealing with my religion, and puts a brake on the ticking clock. So--thanks for posting. Hopefully there'll be more follow up on these sorts of studies with more guidances for nervous nelly people like me by the time I have kids.


Posted by: Ile | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 12:54 PM
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Eating you right back, dudisimo. But sure, "birds are saurischians."


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 12:56 PM
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148: Actually, I'm not quite sure how to precisely interpret this particular intended insult from Robert "clinger to outmoded concepts" Halford, but the broad intent seems clear.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 12:59 PM
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ydnew, etc., I don't like reluctant kids being pushed to hug me either, and now hold out a hand to shake. Which wierds the parents out bigtime, so far on the West Coast. (I tried figuring out when my grandfathers stopped expecting hugs -- maybe when I was four or five? Reinstated later because cultural norms changed.)


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 1:01 PM
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I missed whatever discussion informs 146. Which seems strange as forming strong opinions about pointless shit for the sake of argument is a hobby of mine.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 1:01 PM
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||

I just went looking for my earliest comment on CT, given their ten year anniversary post. So far, the earliest one I've found is November of '04, giving Harry Brighouse advice on making fruitcake. My life really hasn't changed much in the last ten years, has it.

|>


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 1:03 PM
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152: Here, the non-hug adult-to-child norm seems to be a fist bump, preferably the exploding kind.

And because my kids are awesome, I put a photo of them from our hyperlocal gay pride festival in the pool. Mara (in the hat) hates having her photo taken but decided that she wanted to do a Sister Picture and she and Nia helped each other choose props and were totally into it, which was adorable.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 1:15 PM
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I think you all are a little fanatical on the no mandatory hugs thing. AFAICT a mild hug is now the standard form of good he among little kids, between close adult friends, and between relatives; I don't see much difference between demanding that your kid hug the little girl who is going in for the standard goodbye hug to say goodbye and requiring that you be polite and acknowledge people and say goodbye in the first place, and I don't really think that's setting anybody up for a lifetime of sexual abuse. But I could be wrong!


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 1:31 PM
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"Good he" s/b "goodbye"


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 1:32 PM
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Back to the dinosaur front, I am a little unclear about the extent to which Saurischia and Ornithischia are still meaningful categories used by paleontologists.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 1:36 PM
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97: "Don't click with at all" would be an unusual reaction to a sibling, at least as a kid, I'd think.

I would have given a lot to be an only child. I really just wanted to be left alone. I had library books to get through.


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 1:45 PM
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155: I have totally thrilled some kids by offering a fist bump-plus-explosion in lieu of a hug.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 1:47 PM
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158: I believe they have held up as clades in the current thinking despite some challenges. Whether they are regarded as representing an "important" division, I'm not so sure. Part of why I like "birds are theropods."


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 2:02 PM
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The Annals of Improbable Research's "tastes like tetrapod!" was a bit too general, although their conclusion that T. rex tasted like chicken seems plausible enough.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 2:14 PM
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I do love a good fist bump, but my friends want the kids to greet me by running up and giving me a big hug. (Which would be delightful and welcoming if spontaneous.) They literally hadn't seen me in two years and tend to be a bit shy anyway. Last Xmas, the 3 year old had just had a minor allergic reaction (requiring Benadryl) and was going through a stage where he was scared of women. He wouldn't even make eye contact from behind his mom. Poor kid, he had a teary tantrum when they tried to seat him next to me at dinner because he was so shy and scared. He managed to wave goodbye and make eye contact after a few hours. The five year old literally ran to an ajdacent room to peek at me where he thought I couldn't see him and later would only whisper to his mom what he wanted to say to me. At that point, requiring a hug just seems like too much to ask for those temperaments on that particular day. Outgoing kids are neat; hugs and fistbumps and roughhousing are great, but who wants to feel like a terrifying chore?


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 2:39 PM
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My kid isn't even a year old yet but already gets the better of the mandatory hugs. He snatches my glasses off and then holds them away from me while he giggles cherubically. I live in fear of the day he just snaps them in half and I'm blind. He also pinches my nose and scratches my face, like, really hard, also while giggling. He doesn't do this to anyone else, at least to near the same extent. I think he's decided that I play rough with him so he can play rough with me.

His glasses snatch is incredibly dextrous and quick, I just have to drop my guard for a moment and he's got them.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 2:59 PM
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I think he's decided that I play rough with him so he can play rough with me.

This is fun while they're little. There will come a day of reckoning when he's a boisterous teenager who doesn't know his own strength, and has a lifetime of experience knowing that you're indestructible and much much bigger and stronger and tougher than you are. And come that day, you'll be a decade and a half or so older than you are now, and you'll be tired.

Not that I know anyone in this position. At all.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 3:10 PM
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but who wants to feel like a terrifying chore?

My grandmother, that's who. I think that sort of attitude is disappearing, though.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 3:11 PM
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OT: I just swam half a mile (with breaks). First real swimming since 1999. I don't feel that bad, yet.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 3:12 PM
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When I've tried swimming for exercise, I've never gotten sore -- just languid-tired. I think you have to be a pretty seriously competent swimmer to push yourself hard enough to make it a hard workout.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 3:24 PM
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Yep. Now I can't move.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 3:31 PM
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It won't work, ogged isn't coming back. . . .


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 3:36 PM
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169: Other than your typing fingers. Is there anyone we should contact to get help, or do you think you'll make it until mobility is restored?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 3:37 PM
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I'm good. Left over steak and perogi are right here?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 3:39 PM
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Swim hard or no, you still get tan, and that's what matters.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 3:47 PM
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requiring a hug just seems like too much to ask for those temperaments on that particular day

Yes! Agreed! I just think a blanket prohibition on "OK, give Suzie a goodbye hug" is maybe a little extreme.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 3:55 PM
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California has no indoor pools?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 3:59 PM
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Why would you put a pool indoors?


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 4:02 PM
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If it were indoors, how would you tan?


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 4:02 PM
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You want a roof over the pool, but no walls. That way you're in the shade but the chemical smell doesn't get trapped.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 4:14 PM
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you still get tan

And cancer!


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 4:15 PM
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I have cancer-getting skin, but I was at an outdoor pool.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 4:19 PM
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Tancer.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 4:23 PM
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168 is maybe 100M miles from accurate. Swimming badly is both exhausting and stressing. At least the way I do it--and as fate would have it, today was my first day back in the lap pool since Spring '12.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 4:33 PM
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I get a good workout from swimming badly, but I don't get extremely sore from it.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 4:33 PM
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Maybe I've invented a completely novel form of bad swimming.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 4:56 PM
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I can say that my triceps at least will be goofy sore tomorrow.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 4:58 PM
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Speaking of evolution, Slate has a great long essay on the scrotum. I'm not even joking.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 5:50 PM
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I think I would've liked having siblings when I was growing up. But it's hard to be sure -- my parents and I aren't especially skilled at relationships, and my parents haven't gotten along especially well with *their* siblings over the years. (We are all about how familiarity breeds resentment.) And yet... I saw my mother when she was in the hospital last year, and it did cross my mind that it's nice to have close relatives, who can come to see you in the hospital and have a shouting argument with the night nurse when he tries to fuck around with your medications. (Because crisis management is the kind of interaction my family is good at. Not the day to day stuff.)


Posted by: torrey pine | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 6:16 PM
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Scrotum.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 6:23 PM
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(Although, to be honest, an event that my parents consider a crisis would probably barely qualify as a bad Monday on this blog.)


Posted by: torrey pine | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 6:29 PM
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I couldn't remember the word "purslane", but a google search for "fashionable weed greens" quickly remembered it to me.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 7:46 PM
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Purslane is great. It grows like a weed (not in a bad, destructive way). It shows up in pots of parsley and chives and whatnot, at least if you've put some compost in there.

Possibly it's regional, though.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:11 PM
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188: And perhaps their Slatepitchiest tagline yet: "Why are testicles kept in a vulnerable dangling sac? It's not why you think."


Posted by: Kreskin | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:28 PM
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Yes, but still, lots of information I didn't know about an issue that matters.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:31 PM
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It's pretty fascinating, although I came away thinking the galloping hypothesis seems most plausible but then realized I only think that because that's what the writer wanted me to think, and the writer is not really that much of an expert.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:33 PM
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Plus, running can lead to smashed balls without support.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:35 PM
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Then again, what is expertise, anyway? Probably the writer spent a week reading books, which is about what I did before deciding I could manage to publish a paper about comet impacts.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:36 PM
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Still, who knew a kangaroo has its penis behind its balls or that an elephant has no scrotum.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:37 PM
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Still, who knew a kangaroo has its penis behind its balls

Readers of unfogged!


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:38 PM
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I'm sorry I missed that.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:40 PM
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Moby hasn't been to the right zoos.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:40 PM
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Maybe if I work really hard I can come up with "Effects of Da/rk Mat/ter on Testicle Evolution" before April 1.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:40 PM
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"You keep your balls on top of your penis? You're doing it wrong."


Posted by: OPINIONATED SLATE WRITER, OBSERVING A KANGAROO | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:41 PM
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Also, I had the exact same reaction as essear.
Except that comet impact thing. Dude, have some respect for academics.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:43 PM
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Led me to read up on the epididymis. Six meters long.

iPhone autocomplete knew "epididymis"!


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:44 PM
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One of my college roommates had epididymitis. Twice. Didn't seem like fun.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:45 PM
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Your Wikipedia treat for the evening: Epididymotomy is the placing of an incision into the epididymis and is sometimes considered as a treatment option for acute suppurating epididymitis.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:51 PM
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And so to bed


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 8:52 PM
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Um, I am very glad to see Lord Castock back around. Hello, friend! Pleased to see you!


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 9:02 PM
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208: Hey, you! Good to be seen!


Posted by: Lord Castock | Link to this comment | 07- 8-13 9:45 PM
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||

Please stop false alarming, smoke detectors.

|>


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 1:19 AM
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158. I think Saurischia is still a valid clade (Passer domesticus > Triceratops prorsus). You could always ask a paleontologist.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 1:28 AM
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Cheerful thought of the day: acute suppurating epididymitis.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 4:58 AM
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It's in Islington, on a side street off the Essex Road. I like it a lot, though I'm not sure how objectively amazing it is outside of my own context. It's not too busy on a schoolnight, the landlord is a very sound bloke, it's got a pool table, and now and again my mates do DJ nights there, though not as often as they used to.

As for beer, at the moment they've got Timothy Taylor Landlord, Doom Bar and Staropramen on tap (and probably some other stuff I didn't look at), and they've usually got a small but quality selection of bottles. And most importantly they serve pistachios (for free, yesterday, as it happens).


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 9:15 AM
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You had me at Tim Taylor. Did you have a good night? I notice EM hasn't checked in today - head?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 9:46 AM
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You had me at Tim Taylor.

They used to serve Deuchars, which is even better. But Landlord is in my top five British beers, too, so I'm not complaining.

Sanctity of off-blog communications and all that, but I think EM was planning to do sightseeing today.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 9:55 AM
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211: We all know what happened to the passer, Chris.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 10:02 AM
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Please stop false alarming, smoke detectors.

It's like you snuck that vaporizer into work for nothing.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 10:09 AM
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the landlord is a very sound bloke

What exactly does it mean to refer to a "landlord" over there? Is it routine for a pub's owner to tend bar, and be easily recognized as not just an employee? Or is the soundness of a landlord reflected in his/her policies?


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 11:55 AM
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What exactly does it mean to refer to a "landlord" over there? Is it routine for a pub's owner to tend bar

Fairly, yeah. Though it doesn't have to be the owner. It could be the manager or lessee.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 12:14 PM
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No it isn't routine for a pub's owner to tend bar, since most pubs are owned by huge faceless corporations based in France. However, the term "landlord" is used by courtesy to describe their managers, and yes, it is the rule that pub managers (and landlords of the few that remain in private hands) tend bar and bring their personalities to bear on the atmosphere in the pub. Is this not the case in the US?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 12:15 PM
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I suppose the latter option is technically in direct contradiction of the formal meaning of the word "landlord". But that's how it is. A lot of pubs here are held on leases from giant pub owning companies (who may also manage some other pubs directly).


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 12:16 PM
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pwned


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 12:19 PM
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It's pretty rare in the US IME for the owner of a bar to also tend bar. It's also pretty rare for bars to be owned by large faceless corporate chains.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 12:23 PM
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All the bar owners I know do work shifts sometimes and tend to stop by at least daily to make sure everything's going well, but I wouldn't necessarily generalize from that since I think the reason I know them is that they're fairly active in daily life at their bars.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 12:28 PM
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223 -- Federalism, hooray!


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 12:31 PM
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223. Hooters, Hard Rock Cafe, TGIF, O'Drinky's.... The neighborhood local or the quirky place run by that hipster chick that knows the one weird trick to make drinking fun, those places are disappearing.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 12:38 PM
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There was a bar in my old neighborhood in Chicago owned by a mother and daughter. (I'm sure they've sold it now that Andersonville is yuppie central.) They both worked in the bar but their arrangement was 6mos on and 6mos off. Not a bad deal.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 12:40 PM
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226 doesn't seem to be true here in the boring midwest where real estate and drinks are cheap. I've never even heard of O'Drinky's, but the rest are all places I'd consider more restaurants than bars, though I'm really not sure about the Hooters business model on that front. I do think there's a split between chain restaurants/bars, local bar-and-grill chains, and really local bars where the owner owns a bar or maybe two.

There are plenty of places around here where there are 3-5 drinky restaurants with the same name, concept, menu in different areas of the city, but the people who own them aren't francising them elsewhere and just own and manage those. Obviously I'm skewing my stats by going to a gay bar when I do get a chance to go to a bar or to one of the bar-and-grill places if I'm making it to knitting group, but from watching where my old classmates check in on facebook, I think the little local places are still getting plenty of activity. The one down the street from our old house was hilarious because around 9 at night the after-work regulars would trudge home and their 20-something kids would come in to start the second drinking shift.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 12:54 PM
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It's also pretty rare for bars to be owned by large faceless corporate chains.

To be clear, these aren't necessarily chains, though of course those do exist as well. They're companies that own the pub buildings and lease them to, well, landlords. There's usually what's called a beer tie, whereby the tenants are required to buy their wholesale drinks through the pub company (which has been the subject of a lot of political attention recently), but not necessarily any shared branding. A customer wouldn't necessarily have any way way of knowing if the pub was owned by one of the pubcos or by the landlord.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 12:55 PM
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226 doesn't seem to be true here in the boring midwest where real estate and drinks are cheap.

Same here in this bit of boring midwest. Out in stripmallville, though, it may be a different story.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 12:55 PM
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A customer wouldn't necessarily have any way way of knowing if the pub was owned by one of the pubcos or by the landlord.

Hereabouts, you know the bartender owns the bar if he lets you smoke openly.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 12:59 PM
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I don't think "O'Drinkys" actually exists, but there's a bar in downtown Detroit called "O'Blivion's" which is pretty much the perfect name for a bar in downtown Detroit.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 1:53 PM
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I'm sad because my favorite bar with live bluegrass music suddenly closed. The owners were local and also ran the place. According to their website, they decided to retire and put the bar up for sale. But it seemed sudden and unexpected -- in particular, I would've guessed the bar was worth more while it was still operating.


Posted by: torrey pine | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 4:35 PM
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232: Father Vivian O'blivion, resplendent in his frock


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 4:49 PM
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hilarious because around 9 at night the after-work regulars would trudge home and their 20-something kids would come in to start the second drinking shift.

High-fives in the doorway?

There's a good Trollope novel about the beer industry and its real-estate tie-ins, can't remember the title, and even with four hundred pages of plot twists the politics of it were confusing. Except that beer==money.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 4:53 PM
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235: Rachel Ray?


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 5:00 PM
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First you get the beer then you get the money then you get the women. Then you repel the women with your beer-induced assholeness.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 5:02 PM
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Yes! Rachel Ray! Which I remember fondly for the hero's determination to make *good* beer and be proud of it, if his living is to come from beer. Apparently it's considered an anti-Evangelical novel mostly, though.

Moby's almost right, except you attract the woman with your beer-proved virtue. Can't remember if Rachel ever actually drinks any, probably not. Time to reread!


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 5:10 PM
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Huh. Apparently there really is a Trollope novel called "Rachel Ray." Though personally I prefer Wilkie Collins' "Guy Fieri."


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 5:58 PM
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234: Brian O'Blivion


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 6:00 PM
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239: I'm fond of Kipling's Paula Deen.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 6:01 PM
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240: I knew this Brian Oblivion first, and didn't know where he'd gotten his handle from; I was totally confused one night when, flipping through channels, I heard somebody say "Brian Oblivion is DEAD!" on the teevee.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 6:03 PM
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I do think there's a split between chain restaurants/bars, local bar-and-grill chains, and really local bars where the owner owns a bar or maybe two.

I'd agree with this characterization, and with what other people have said about the truly local bars doing fine. That's been the case everywhere I've lived, at least. I presume the prevalence of small local bars in the US is due mainly to the hyper-local nature of American liquor laws, and Charley's 225 seems to imply the same.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 6:08 PM
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238.2: I wasn't thinking of the book.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 6:36 PM
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There was a bar in my old neighborhood in Chicago owned by a mother and daughter. (I'm sure they've sold it now that Andersonville is yuppie central.) They both worked in the bar but their arrangement was 6mos on and 6mos off.

Persephone's?


Posted by: Mr. Blandings | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 6:44 PM
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186: Speaking of evolution

We haven't delved into what a bunch of total fucking losers the birds are. Totally out-competed on land during the Cenozoic they end up with a few small island outposts while mammals run rampant. Sure they've temporarily done well in their retreat to the air, but in the fullness of time that too will collapse. I envision a night/day tag team of highly-evolved bats and flying squirrels cleaning up that mess over the next few tens of millions of years. Carnivorous bats, venomous flying squirrels, devouring shrieking baby birds in their nests, day and night; relentless, conniving and shrewd like only mammals can be. The few scattered remaining sea bird species hunted down and extirpated by the relentless Norwegian Sea Eagle Bat. Victory at long last! The theropods truly extinct. Mammalia ├╝ber alles!


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 8:46 PM
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The ruminant rearguard is with you, JP.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 8:57 PM
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Also.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 9:18 PM
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|| I wouldn't want to live here, but North Central Idaho is spectacular. I've probably raved before about driving old US 95 up White Bird Hill, but going the other way -- White Bird to Pittsburg Landing -- is quite the drive as well. |>


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 9:45 PM
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248: Forgot that you might also be an ally of this war against our feathered enemies, but then venomous flying squirrels and giant carnivorous bats might not be an improvement from your point of view.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 9:51 PM
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250: Nah, they're cool. It's not the flying that bothers me about birds.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 9:52 PM
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247 is alarming. What if they get guns?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 9:55 PM
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Then it'll be payback time.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 9:57 PM
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251: Is it the cloaca and know how it makes all bird sex anal sex?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 10:01 PM
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241: "Paula Deen" sounds to me more like a name that might figure in a Robert W. Service poem, though that's probably because it seems like it would be easy to construct longish internally rhymed lines with it.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 10:25 PM
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254: No. What's wrong with anal sex?


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 07- 9-13 10:42 PM
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256: According to this credible source the Bible doesn't condemn it, so what's the point?


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 2:50 AM
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||
This is the first conference I've ever been to where the name tags are printed on both sides. It is so smart! Why didn't anyone else think of that?

Also there is a dead body with a wax head all dressed up in a closet in the hallway. The English people don't seem to think this is weird at all.
|>


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 4:31 AM
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My eyes have seen with Paula Deen the snows of the Arctic cold;
The snows are white, even at night, in the legends often told;
But since Paula Deen has many times been made to feel under attack;
She'll go there forever because there has never been a snowflake Deen could call black.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 4:33 AM
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Goddamn it, my tag failure ruined the entire joke:

My eyes have seen with Paula Deen the snows of the Arctic cold;
The snows are white, even at night, in the legends often told;
But since Paula Deen has many times been made to feel under attack;
She'll go there forever because there has never been a snowflake Deen could call nigger black.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 4:39 AM
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256: Maybe the issue is that if everything is anal sex, nothing is? But I'm not the one who is afraid of birds so I'm just guessing.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 4:52 AM
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Maybe the issue is that if everything is anal sex, nothing is?

That's the tag-line for the porno version of The Incredibles.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 5:06 AM
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More bird tricks: Urohidrosis is the habit in some birds of defecating onto the scaly portions of the legs as a cooling mechanism.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 5:35 AM
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Defecating and urinating, the filthy things.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 5:40 AM
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This is the first conference I've ever been to where the name tags are printed on both sides. It is so smart! Why didn't anyone else think of that?

So now, if you forget who you are, you can take a sneaky look without anyone realising what you're doing?


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 5:42 AM
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re: 265

It does make sticking to your covert story easier, when engaged in international espionage and dirty tricks.

'Hi, I'm Dr Epididyma Suppurata, from the [look down] University of Western Iowa.'


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 5:45 AM
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OT: Guy on the bus with one of those ankle-mounted tracking gizmos and wearing short pants. I always wear more concealing clothes when I'm on monitoring.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 5:46 AM
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And the scenario in 246 is actually woefully incomplete; predation is all well and good, but you really need habitat displacement to fully exterminate them. I look to some branches of flying squirrels to execute this prong of attack (think about who would win the day at bird feeders if current "backyard" squirrels could fly). I look for cute little furry seed eaters with adorable fluffy babies.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 5:46 AM
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Iowa Western is a community college. Iowa State is the main university in western Iowa.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 5:49 AM
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The opening keynote is being given in Swedish Sign Language and simultaneously interpreted to 6 other sign languages plus spoken and captioned English. It's pretty crazy.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 5:59 AM
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265: exactly.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 6:00 AM
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And the scenario in 246 is actually woefully incomplete; predation is all well and good, but you really need habitat displacement to fully exterminate them. I look to some branches of flying squirrels to execute this prong of attack (think about who would win the day at bird feeders if current "backyard" squirrels could fly). I look for cute little furry seed eaters with adorable fluffy babies.

First, squirrels are already winning the bird feeder war.

Second, clearly the habitat destruction is going to occur when pandas, mammalian evolution's sleeper cell, are activated and start to eat all the trees in the world instead of bamboo.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 6:05 AM
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269: Where "western" means pretty much dead center of the state. (OK, it is about 8 miles SW of the actual geographic center of the state, and it is further west than University of Iowa).


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 6:05 AM
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Council Bluffs is kind of a dump. When you get too far west, everything nice is in Nebraska.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 6:09 AM
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272.2: Certainly. Given the irreducible uncertainties in predicting the future course of evolution, all mammalian comrades will be called on to do their part.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 6:16 AM
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I dunno, I'd bet heavily on a corvid victory in a corvids v squirrel war. And they seem (along with the Orcas, and maybe the parrots) like the animals most likely to evolve human-like intelligence. I for one welcome our future superintelligent crow overlords.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 7:00 AM
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Also, bats? Are you fucking kidding me? I mean don't get me wrong, those guys look and are cool but in terms of air superiority vs birds they are like the Air Force of Grenada. Also, much like the great Hollywood of the 70s, they are being killed off by white nose syndrome.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 7:10 AM
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And they seem (along with the Orcas, and maybe the parrots) like the animals most likely to evolve human-like intelligence.

And the cephalopods.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 7:16 AM
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Halford beats me to it. You mammalian triumphalists ae going to have to explain why our best representatives in the air spend their time hiding in caves and flitting about at night hoping they don't get spotted by owls.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 7:16 AM
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The corvids will be too busy fighting each other.

We have a lot of magpies round here, and a few years ago a bunch of jackdaws which normally roost in some trees about a quarter of a mile away started extending their foraging range in this direction. Then one day I was out in the yard and heard this incredible noise and looked up and there was this pitched battle going on.

There must have been 12 or 15 of each species, going at each other all over the sky. There was some sophisticated tactics happening as well, with birds deliberately providing backup for each other, and if say, a magpie noticed another one getting a hard time, it would break it off with the jackdaw it was harassing and go to help.

This went on for at least twenty minutes, ebbing and flowing, until eventually the jackdaws backed off and left the magpies wheeling around, screaming. The jackdaws have kept their distance since.

I don't know if this is normal behaviour - I've never seen anything like it before or since - but if those little buggers ever learn how to use projectile weapons, we're going to be in the shit, let alone squirrels.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 7:25 AM
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It's not impossible that mammals will win this war, but it won't be an honorable victory. Do you really want to be on Team Egg-Thief, or Team Death From Above?


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 7:27 AM
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You've fallen for the vicious propaganda ploy that is called Angry Birds.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 7:29 AM
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277, 279: Sure, now they are. You need to take the long view--I am putting my faith in the superior evolutionary flexibility of mammals ...

And as a product of the current partial victory of Team Egg-Thief, yeah go for it. Omelets for everyone (for awhile, then we'll just proceed with eating each other).


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 7:34 AM
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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phorusrhacidae


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 7:35 AM
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Have I, Mobes? Consider the Monkey-Eating Eagle. Or if you want to talk vicious propoganda, the much-maligned Ostrich, a bird so badass it decided to live in the Savannah's of Africa, where squirrels would never dream of going, flight be damned.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 7:36 AM
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270: viral video!


Posted by: unimaginative | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 7:39 AM
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Have I, Mobes? Consider the Monkey-Eating Eagle. Or if you want to talk vicious propoganda, the much-maligned Ostrich, a bird so badass it decided to live in the Savannah's of Africa, where squirrels would never dream of going, flight be damned.

Are you seriously claiming that the birds of the savanna are more badass than its mammals?


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 7:46 AM
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More outrageous, he's misspelling "propaganda" and incorrectly apostrophizing "Savannahs".


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 7:48 AM
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Also, why is it capitalized?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 7:49 AM
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Because Eggplant is Hitler a bird.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 7:50 AM
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Damn iPhone.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 7:50 AM
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Though this probably means I've misspelled propaganda enough that my iPhone gave up on it. But the savannah thing is all on it.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 7:52 AM
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287: I'm just saying sure they've had a few bad eons, but they've made more successful incursions into our territory than we have theirs, despite our weaselly tactics.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 7:55 AM
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You know, I wasn't going to say anything, but you've got a lot of nerve setting yourself up as some kind of mammal spokesman, given that you're plant-identified. I mean, my mammalian credentials are weak as well, but I'm not making an issue of it.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 8:02 AM
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African ground squirrel.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 8:03 AM
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287: I'm just saying sure they've had a few bad eons, but they've made more successful incursions into our territory than we have theirs, despite our weaselly tactics.

There are over a thousand species of bats, so it's not like it's some tiny beachhead. Also, we have an entire branch of mammals that live their lives in the oceans, despite breathing air.



Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 8:07 AM
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294: I'm a neutral party. You can trust my judgement. Not my facts, evidently, but my judgement.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 8:10 AM
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There's usually what's called a beer tie, whereby the tenants are required to buy their wholesale drinks through the pub company (which has been the subject of a lot of political attention recently),

Avoiding this is about the only thing that makes me feel good about the three-tier distribution system in the US.


Posted by: Nathan Williams | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 8:11 AM
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296: Also, we have an entire branch of mammals that live their lives in the oceans, despite breathing air.

Right the naval campaign is of secondary importance while we deal with this rump group of theropods. And not a moment too soon as can be seen by the obvious sympathy they elicit from the sentimental and weak-willed amongst us.

Crocodiles, turtles, lizards etc. are an afterthought, about as relevant as Donnie is in The Big Lebowski or Von Wafer is in geopolitics.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 9:06 AM
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Right the naval campaign is of secondary importance while we deal with this rump group of theropods.

Our cetacean forces are there to prevent a rearguard action by any water-loving theropods. A march of the penguins, if you will.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 9:11 AM
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299: all of us squabbling tribes will be sorry when the Kingdom of the Beetles decides to restore order within its borders.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 9:17 AM
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a bird so badass it decided to live in the Savannah's of Africa

Bloemfontein is the Savannah of Africa. (The Atlanta of Africa is Cape Town.)


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 9:18 AM
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301: I'VE ALWAYS BEEN INORDINATELY FOND OF THEM.


Posted by: OPINIONATED GOD | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 9:22 AM
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Snaps!


Posted by: J.B.S. Haldane | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 9:23 AM
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301: Edward Gorey tried to warn us.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 9:24 AM
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Birds aren't a rump group except in the squirrel loving fever dreams of the apparently self-hating "J.P. Stormcrow." There are more species of birds than mammals -- and they're getting smarter. A crow with human intelligence would have both air mobility and vastly superior eye-pecking-out technology.

Personally, I plan on soaring up among the clouds with evolution's winners instead of ln the ground with some hairy acorn-eaters.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 9:49 AM
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I learned recently from my colleague's Twitter feed that cassowaries are vicious killing machines, little changed from their ancestors the velociraptors.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 9:51 AM
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Could something the size of a crow carry the kind of brain necessary for human-style intelligence into the air?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 9:52 AM
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Sentimental, am I? So be it, then. 'Tis better to die as a theropod than live 1000 generations as a shrew-like mammal.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 9:56 AM
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307: idlewords faces them head on.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 10:13 AM
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308: Sure. One gobbet at a time.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 10:22 AM
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306.1: I'm undercover. So far the birds have been too fucking stupid to see through it.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 10:33 AM
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Species that have built remote control ornithopters:
Mammals: 1
Birds: 0


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 10:35 AM
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Bipedal locomotion, highly intelligent, complex vocalization. Humans pretty clearly are occupying an evolutionary niche that rightly belongs to theropods. If not for mammal's baby-eating prowess, that score would be reversed, JP.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 10:57 AM
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It is true that only human intelligence can produce the quadcopter mid-air suspension devices that will allow successful integration with our future avian masters. But they can still fly better than we can with the workings of our technologists.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 11:00 AM
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A turkey woulda landed that 777 fine.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 11:06 AM
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Humans pretty clearly are occupying an evolutionary niche that rightly belongs to theropods if they hadn't fucking lost.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 11:15 AM
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315: So far.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 11:16 AM
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Stupid theropods can't evolve past a single comet impact without losing all the branches most likely to develop higher-level cognition.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 11:34 AM
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314/5: Now I'm imagining David Brin's Uplift series, but with uplifted corvids and parrots instead of dolphins and chimps.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 1:23 PM
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Weren't the really evil aliens in the third book birds?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 1:35 PM
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Bird-like. With known species alongside humans it would feel different.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 1:53 PM
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More Hitchcocky.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 1:58 PM
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Hey there sailor, can you throw a hitch?


Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 2:07 PM
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The video in 257 is fantastic. Probably my favorite of theirs that I've seen.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 8:04 PM
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I keep laughing to myself reading this thread, and there's really no way at all to explain to my husband what's so funny.


Posted by: J, Robot | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 8:28 PM
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This thread truly is classic Unfogged. Hilarious but inscrutable.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 8:36 PM
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I'm going with my standard explanation: "People are being funny on the Internet."


Posted by: J, Robot | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 8:52 PM
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Everyone here is racing as quickly as possible to betray their own species, and you think think it's funny? I've heard of being unable to take your own side in an argument, but don't you think this is taking it a little fucking far?


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 9:35 PM
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What's funny is that people are being funny? That doesn't seem right. Surely what's funny is the being-funny of the people, not the fact that they're being funny.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 9:45 PM
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In short, I find your manner of expression WHOLLY inadequate.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 9:52 PM
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307: idlewords faces them head on.

I love that post:

Every so often a nature show tries to bill the cassowary as 'the most dangerous bird in the world', and even though this is technically true, it's a little disingenuous. Northern Queensland makes a lot of competing demands on your fear.

Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 10:11 PM
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I actually hadn't read that post until just now. It lives up to the hype.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 10:38 PM
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Crows and parrots both have pretty decent shots at evolving higher cognition. It's not clear to me that apes were obviously a better bet pre-humans.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 10:46 PM
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It's not clear to me that humans would be unable to win the War on Birds without the assistance of any other mammals. Maybe even without trying.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 07-10-13 10:48 PM
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335: Right, like the inadvertent scorched earth approach gambit.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 2:07 AM
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You vertebrates run away and play with each other. I'll get mine.


Posted by: OPINIONATED COCKROACH | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 2:10 AM
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-approach


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 2:19 AM
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Now I'm imagining David Brin's Uplift series, but with uplifted corvids and parrots instead of dolphins and chimps.

I cannot readily explain the cognitive lapse that caused me to misread this - twice! - as

Now I'm imagining David Mamet's Uplift series, but with uplifted corvids and parrots instead of dolphins and chimps.

but, whatever disturbing neurological implications it has for me personally, you have to agree it's an interesting concept.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 3:37 AM
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Personally I'm worried about the jellyfish. All that stands between us poor teleosts and the Dominion of the Coelenterata (paraphyletic group detected! quick, the urplesignal!) are these bad boys:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ocean_sunfish

and quite frankly their appearance does not inspire confidence.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 3:45 AM
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340: they should turn up off Cornwall in a few weeks.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 5:30 AM
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Really? Nice.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 8:07 AM
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340 is crazy. I had no idea there were bony fish anywhere near that big.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 8:13 AM
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Well, that's the biggest one. But, yes, impressive. It's still tiny compared to the biggest cartilaginous fish or marine mammals.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 8:22 AM
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A fairly well-known letter in the taxonomy/phylogenetic nomenclature debate is entitled "Am I a bony fish?"


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 8:46 AM
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So strictly speaking 344.1 is not true since all of the 344.lasts are bony fish.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 8:49 AM
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"Am I a bony fish?"

Whoda thunk Vardaman would grow up to be a biologist?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 8:55 AM
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So strictly speaking 344.1 is not true since all of the 344.lasts are bony fish.

The cartilaginous fish are not bony fish. Nor are marine mammals; they are teleosts, but not bony fish, because they're not fish.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 8:59 AM
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347: I semi-pwned you on that one several weeks back.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 9:00 AM
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348: The cartilaginous fish are not bony fish.

By "344.last" I meant just the marine mammals. Regarding which, *I* agree with your usage, but this is the dinosaurs/birds thing redux*. Cladistically-speaking they are.

*With the caveat the mammals have evolved characteristics that are much "further away" from bony fish than birds have from theropods.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 9:05 AM
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342: they start to show up in the South West Approaches in deep summer most years. o hai sunfish, i haz unusually sunny day.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 9:08 AM
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So yeah, 348.1 is correct. For the other read the link, or this blog post (and its links) "Me too! I'm a bony fish."


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 9:08 AM
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349: Dammit.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 9:12 AM
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Whatever, they're not teleosts. Teleosts are actinopterigians; marine and all other tetrapods are sarcopterigians. Diverged about 400 Myr ago.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 9:12 AM
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340: I saw a dead one of those once as a little kid and I was convinced it was just the head of a much larger fish. Freaked me the hell out.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 9:17 AM
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I should of course have said teleostomes, not teleosts.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 9:17 AM
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Stanley Meltzoff's excellent paintings of fish got linked on metafilter a while back.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 9:23 AM
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356: Of course ....

That there's some confusing terminology, but I guess for someone who actually knows Ancient Greek maybe not so much ("perfect mouth" vs. "perfect bone")? And then there's Euteleost and Euteleostome! Good perfect?

All well beyond the specificity of classification that I can keep up with much less keep in my head.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 7:07 PM
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Speaking of cartilaginous, no one watching Sharknado?


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 8:16 PM
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Speaking of mammals and qudricopters. "Giant human-powered quadricopter wins $250,000 Sikorsky Prize".


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 8:47 PM
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That's pretty awesome.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 8:54 PM
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Yes it is.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 9:01 PM
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That's amazing. Is he steering the thing by leaning to keep it in the 10X10 meter square?


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 9:02 PM
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So awesome.


Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 9:18 PM
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||

Confidential to essear & maybe Stanley too? somebody, anyway: the Veronica Mars movie is on the move. From a friend's FB feed:

Kudos to the Warner Brothers film crew (union) who bought our entire block ice cream today.They have been shooting a movie (Veronica Mars)at our next door neighbors house. We couldn't be happier. Lets keep film jobs in California!!

The shoot is in Signal Hill, if you want to come stalk.

|>


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 9:24 PM
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The shoot is in Signal Hill, if you want to come stalk.

Well now there's an idea that hadn't occurred to me before.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 9:37 PM
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Suuuuuuuure.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 9:50 PM
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360: wow.


Posted by: X. Trapnel | Link to this comment | 07-11-13 11:14 PM
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