Re: ATM: She's just so funny!

1

That isn't nearly as cruel as the marshmallow test, so I guess you're becoming a less terrible parent.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 9:13 AM
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We gave the marshmellow test to Ace, and she's been resisting for about three months now. It's really incredible.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 9:15 AM
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What is the received wisdom on whining/crying and 3-to-5 year old children? Just a phase, or something that you need to eradicate nownownow?


Posted by: Klug | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 9:49 AM
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It's very kind of you to actually document this sort of thing for her; it'll make life much easier for her therapist in 20 years.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 9:56 AM
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My goal is to make the therapist burst out laughing.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 10:00 AM
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3: Yes and yes. You can't eliminate it at 3-5, but you can start in with tactics like, "I can't understand you. We can talk about it when you can talk without whining."

You'll inevitably give in to whining sometimes, maybe lots of times, but you want to start telling them it's not an acceptable way to communicate.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 10:00 AM
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Therapist: WHEEEEE!
Hawaiian: When you make light of my struggle, I get all hurty.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 10:00 AM
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6 was me.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 10:01 AM
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Another tactic I've seen be successful when they're whining about something they want is to reply, "Thank you for letting me know." If it's a potentially reasonable request, you can add, "I'll think about it."


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 10:07 AM
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This is the worst goddamn thing about being a parent. Changing diarrhea is nothing compared to suppressing the urge to laugh. With my first one, my wife and I mastered the art of shooting the "this is the fucking funniest thing ever" look at each other. Now, though, our oldest have figured out what the look means and likes to show off how smart she is, so when our youngest does something funny and we exchange the look, the oldest will laugh to prove that she's in on the joke.

My youngest is the exact opposite of Hawaii, though. He loves it when we laugh, so when we succumb it guarantees he will repeat whatever he just did another 50 thousand times in the next hour.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 10:08 AM
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Joey gets really really upset if you call him "cute." I've been telling him he looks "fierce" as a substitute, but he can tell I still think he's cute.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 10:14 AM
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I'd love to help but you're on your own.


Posted by: Child-Hating Monster Smearcase | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 10:18 AM
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Oh, can I tell you an adorable child thing? I mean, the child may be horrible - it's just a conversation I overheard as I crossed the pedestrian bridge at Large Land Grant University. You must picture a group of rather standard middle-middle-class white people of the tall and thin and sandy blond and dressed in cargo shirts and tees sort. One of them is a small boy, perhaps six. "The future comes quickly," he says. So it does, I think, and I start eavesdropping. "The future comes quickly, so you never need to be afraid, and you'll never get hurt. Because nothing bad ever happens in the future." And then they passed out of earshot.

If I had been in this conversation, I would have asked him precisely what he meant about the future - was this a sort of infant technofuturism, where we're all speeding toward the singularity? Or was it some kind of commentary on how the future is narrated? Or some philosophy of temporality that I'm simply not well-theorized enough to understand?

Anyway, it was pretty cute.


Posted by: Frowner | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 10:33 AM
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My youngest is the exact opposite of Hawaii, though.

Yeah, this is my eldest. He was clowning before he could talk.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 10:42 AM
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11: have I told the story of when I stopped being called cute? I'm 99% sure I have, but here goes:

Five year old heebie pitches a living shit fit over being called cute. Whole family is gathered, and someone unexpectedly asks me what I'd rather be called. I stop, cold, and realize my next words will be the most consequential of my life. Everyone is rapt, and I need to deliver the most grown-up, opposite-of-cute word possible. So I said "Fashionable." Everyone's faces crumpled with laughter and I realized I'd made a terrible, lifelong mistake.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 10:50 AM
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I have mocked my children constantly since birth. They're scarred, but tough.

(I have had a couple of heartfelt talks with them in recent years about how they have to know that not everyone talks to each other like that, and they should be kinder to their friends than we are to each other at home, because sometimes other people have a hard time telling when a savage attack is meant affectionately.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 11:16 AM
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I have mocked my children constantly since birth.

"That black, stumpy thing is gross. Why don't you get a real belly button?"


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 11:18 AM
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Hawaii reacts horribly to any loss of face or appearance of not being in control. She is a highstrung little perfectionist, like her father. Only nothing at all like me, which has meant my intuition is completely wrong with her and teasing her would actually be pretty cruel, except under sufficiently gentle circumstances. Hokey pokey is more like me and rolls with it.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 11:21 AM
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17 made me laugh.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 11:21 AM
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people have a hard time telling when a savage attack is meant affectionately

Didn't the Grizzly Man have that problem?


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 11:22 AM
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10: the oldest will laugh to prove that she's in on the joke

Best. Part. Of. Being. The. Oldest.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 11:24 AM
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"The future comes quickly, so you never need to be afraid, and you'll never get hurt. Because nothing bad ever happens in the future."

He's perfectly right, but he forgot that when the future gets here it turns into the present. You should have reminded him.


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 11:25 AM
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My 5-year-old asked this weekend (after being forced by necessity to use a boys' bathroom, where she was relieved she wasn't going to have to stand up) when she'd grow a "wig/gly vul/va." I'm usually good at staying neutral, but after calmly confirming that she did indeed mean "pen/is" and had just forgotten the name, I had to turn away and breathe through my nose until I was pretty sure the urge to giggle was gone.


Posted by: Plausibly Deniable President | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 11:37 AM
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When the Calabat is sad, his face crumples in a way that would be heartbreaking if it weren't so funny-looking.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 11:39 AM
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It is a good thing PDP google proofed "pen/is," otherwise all the people googling for cock pics would come here.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 11:52 AM
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...and had just forgotten the name...

Mulva?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 11:55 AM
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I have a hard time not laughing when little PGD cries. Is that abusive? Like, when you can see him deciding whether or not to cry, his face looks super funny.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 1:39 PM
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Oh, God, Heebie, 15 is adorable.

(My apologies if this is still a sore spot!)


Posted by: delagar | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 1:49 PM
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Our ten year old baby of the family doesn't like being laughed at, which naturally happens all the time.

We have a video from five and a half years ago (when we were in Canada, the time of UnfoggeDCon 2) of her talking about a triple burger. C asked her how many burgers that was, and she answers, "probably about ... fweeee?" and pulls a funny face. She still becomes violent if anyone smirks whilst saying "probably about ...?"


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 2:02 PM
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15 really is awesome.


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 2:29 PM
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Another endorsement for 15.

15 for president!


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 2:32 PM
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I have a hard time not laughing when little PGD cries.

Before becoming a parent, this reaction would have been unimaginable to me, but I think a lot of times when the little ones cry they're cute.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 2:34 PM
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32 was me.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 2:34 PM
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Heh. My niece is 13 now, and thinks herself very grown up. She's always hated being laughed at, even though our family [because my Mum has this sense of humour] has always been fairly piss-taking. The first time she came to visit my wife and me, aged about 6, she was throwing a tantrum and my wife laughed.

That was it. She spent the next hour or so sitting on our stairs, chanting quietly but determinedly, 'I hate my Auntie XXXX, I hate my Auntie XXX.'


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 2:36 PM
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I had a boss who, in cleaning out her office, found a plastic "no whining" sign. I forget if this actually made it home with me or if just the concept did, but the important part is that we told Rory that certain areas of the apartment were no whining zones. AND SHE BELIEVED IT!


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 4:24 PM
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How did that work? I tried to tell my son that he couldn't outrun a car and couldn't get him to believe that he shouldn't try. I had to threatening to take away his Wii.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 4:33 PM
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And monsters. He won't believe me when I say there are no monsters in his room. I'm thinking of hiring a guy with a monster suit so that I can correctly predict a monster and thus get some credibility on the issue.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 4:41 PM
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When she's really, really pissed, Zardoz sticks her lower lip waaaay out, and it is the cutest goddamned thing.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 4:48 PM
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I have, I believe, taken pictures, rather than tending to whatever her needs are.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 4:49 PM
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36: Mostly the blessing of a gullible kid, I think. Counting to 3 was also really effective until some asshole friend asked me in front of her what would happen if I got to 3 and I didn't actually know.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 5:01 PM
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We have a hamster that we kill on three.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 5:15 PM
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When the hamster starts looking sick, I count faster so he doesn't realize they die on a month or two regardless.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 5:17 PM
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40- There's a whole book about that. Somehow it has more than three pages.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 5:17 PM
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37: He won't believe me when I say there are no monsters in his room.

I begin tucking him into bed and he tells me, "Daddy check for monsters under my bed." I look underneath for his amusement and see him, another him, under the bed, staring back at me quivering and whispering, "Daddy there's somebody on my bed."


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 5:39 PM
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I'd never read the Ramona/Beezus books before reading them to my kid in the past week, but it turns out that she is pretty much the real life doppleganger of Ramona, so the books have useful psychological insight. Also I'm only on book two so I'm really hoping that Book 13 isn't "Ramona the Truck Stop Meth Whore."


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 5:49 PM
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"Ramona: Second Coming of Ayn Rand."


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 5:53 PM
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"Ramona Takes on the RIAA."


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 5:55 PM
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"Ramona in Love."

Ramona goes to Princeton and falls in love with soccer star Chet Farnsworth--a dreadlocked heartthrob from New Trier High School.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 6:03 PM
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The Ramona books were okay, but I found those Fudge books extremely offensive. The asshole younger brother EATS the older brother's pet turtle! That's totally fucked up. And then the parents are like "you're not allowed to be mad at your little brother!" Assholes.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 6:04 PM
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"Ramona of the Wheatfields."


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 6:07 PM
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Ooh, we should totally do Ramona next! I don't think I'll have to push through all the Narnia books before Nia is ready for a change. She adored the Lois Lowry Sam books, about Anastasia Krupnik's little brother.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 6:15 PM
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Ramona and the Great Glass Ceiling


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 6:16 PM
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Sure, go ahead show Halford up by using proper typography.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 6:17 PM
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Ramona's dad uttered one aphorism that I still use quarterly or so.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 6:17 PM
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Ramona Trolls a Blog


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 6:18 PM
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Rihonna and Yeezus


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 6:19 PM
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54: Should we be searching the archives?


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 6:20 PM
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Always already.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 6:43 PM
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Ramona and the Horrible Reading of the Archives, he guessed realistically.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 6:56 PM
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49- Jeez, how about a spoiler alert?


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 7:24 PM
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Ramona warning: the first book chronologically (beezus and ramona) is drier and more boring and the only one that focuses on beezus's perspective.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 7:48 PM
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they should be kinder to their friends than we are to each other at home

LB's family is my family! I had to get that talk again in the fourth grade after I was a bit too sarcastic with one of the nuns.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 7:51 PM
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Another tactic I've seen be successful when they're whining about something they want is to reply, "Thank you for letting me know."

I must be a mean mommy, because I can't even imagine responding this way. Does it really work? (this is a genuine question, btw). My reply is more likely to be along the lines of Child-Hating Monster Smearcase's (#12).

One of my cousin's sons is off to France to play hockey professionally (which is pretty awesome of and for this cousin's son). This branch of the family think I'm guilty of child abuse for not putting my son in hockey from the tender age of 3 or 4 (and if the goal of parenting is to produce a professional hockey player, they are correct to conclude that I have failed miserably).

The Ramona series is excellent. I also love Henry Huggins (the boy with the dog).


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 7:57 PM
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I must be a mean mommy, because I can't even imagine responding this way.

Man, I do it all the time. It isn't the mean mommy option? Anyhow, mean or not, it works some of the time, like so many things.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 08-15-13 10:30 PM
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Yeah, I used to do it too. "I'm thirstyyyyyyy." "Ok, I'll make a note of that." They don't do it any more, so it worked as well as anything else might have. And you can be as sarcastic as you like doing it, it completely works for mean mothers.


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 1:15 AM
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"The future comes quickly, so you never need to be afraid, and you'll never get hurt. Because nothing bad ever happens in the future."

It's gonna be the future soon!
And I won't always be this way
When the things that make me weak and strange get engineered away
It's gonna be the future soon!
I've never seen it quite so clear
And when my heart is breaking I can close my eyes and it's already here.

I'll probably be some kind of scientists
Doing research on my spacelab in space
I'll fix world hunger, I'll teach dolphins to speak,
I'll work all day, spend my nights and week-
Ends perfecting my warrior robot race
Building them one laser gun at a time
I will teach them all about
Human life and what it's worth
I just hope that I can keep them from destroying the earth...


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 1:33 AM
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He won't believe me when I say there are no monsters in his room.

My mommy always said there were no monsters - no real ones - but there are.

--Yes, there are, aren't there?

Why do they tell little kids that?

--Most of the time it's true.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 1:37 AM
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Ramona Goes Back in Time and Kills Christ.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 3:40 AM
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I was so ridiculously lame when reading the Ramona books. I was always scrupulous about reading books in the proper order--sometimes that meant chronologically, but I was very upset when people putting together Chronicles of Narnia collections started trying to make them chronological.

I think that I had a weird rule where I wouldn't read the Ramona books until I was the age that the character was supposed to be in that particular book.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 4:07 AM
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Ramona Goes Back in Time and Kills Christ.

"Come with me if you want to be resurrected."


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 4:15 AM
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66: Given the topic of the thread, wouldn't Betty and Me be the more appropriate song?


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 4:17 AM
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"Come with me if you want to be resurrected."

"I'll be back. In three days."


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 4:19 AM
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"Judgement Day is inevitable."


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 4:35 AM
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Hasta la vista, God. It's me, Margaret


Posted by: Awl | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 4:45 AM
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And Jesus stood before the governor, and the governor asked Him, saying, "Art thou the King of the Jews?"

>> THOU HAST SAID IT
>> IF YOU SAY SO
>> YES
>> NO
>> FUCK YOU ASSHOLE


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 4:52 AM
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>>FUCK YOU CHRIST, WHAT AN ASSHOLE


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 4:56 AM
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74: "Go ahead, make my day religion."


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 5:00 AM
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"Your belief in me is good. It relieves tension and the fear of death."


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 5:47 AM
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The thing I remember most from reading Beverly Cleary's autobiography, which wasn't particularly intended for kids, was an anecdote where a friend's mother chided her and the friend for calling chipmunks "chippies" because "A chippy is a woman who sells her body," which young (teen?) Beverly found both baffling and shaming. So she definitely understood the being-laughed-at feeling, which I think often leads to vivid kid memories.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 6:14 AM
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--Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb.

--Oh, come on. Do I look like the mother of God? I mean, am I tough, organized? I can't even balance my checkbook.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 6:14 AM
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A chippy is a woman anyone who sells her body fish and chips, and sometimes even deep-fried Mars bars.

Or that was my understanding from limited time spent across the pond, at least.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 6:20 AM
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Maybe if you asked about a off-menu specials?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 6:29 AM
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And saveloys.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 6:29 AM
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Ramona the Poetry MFA Who Works At A Call Center


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 6:30 AM
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When my stepdaughter exclaims, "I hurt my hand!" as she frequently does, maybe because her hand inadvertently touched a surface unexpectedly, I act very concerned, "Oh my gosh! Are you ok? Do I need to perform an emergency handectomy?" This infuriates her and she yells, "No! I'm fine!"
Sometimes I'll continue to torture her, "Are you sure you're ok? I'm a little out of practice, but I'm sure I can still do the surgery."

I'm a horrible, horrible parent.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 6:30 AM
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81: I think the chippy is the shop, rather than the employee. If you called someone a chippy, that'd mean they were a carpenter.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 6:43 AM
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As nouns, I'd spell them "chippie" -- also means small bird and prostitute -- and reserve "chippy" for the adjective, which means "irritable", with class-related undertones (derives from "chip on the shoulder" I think). viz: "The chippy chippie scowled at the chippie in the chippie"


Posted by: tierce de lollardie | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 6:53 AM
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"The chippy chippie scowled at the chippie in the chippie."

Hah.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 7:01 AM
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"The chippy chippie scowled at the chippie in the chippie"

You really need to invent a use as a verb so you can outdo the Buffalo buffalo.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 7:02 AM
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89: You're thinking of that scene in Fargo also?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 7:03 AM
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Plum the plumber plumbed the plum plum.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 7:09 AM
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Alternately, "Plumber Plum plumbed plum plums."


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 7:10 AM
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"So that's why the chippie chippied the chippy chippie in the chippie"


Posted by: tierce de lollardie | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 7:10 AM
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where "chippied" is a regional variant of "chibbed"


Posted by: tierce de lollardie | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 7:15 AM
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Okay, I guess if we want to stretch the usage of "plum" as an adjective a bit, we could say:

Plum plumber Plum plums plum plumbers' plum plums.

But that's somewhat absurd.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 7:17 AM
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+b


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 7:18 AM
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97

Is there anyway I can do extra credit? I need an A- to get into law school.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 7:29 AM
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I always thought 'chippie' meant 'bimbo' or even 'trophy wife', not 'prostitute'. On the other hand the only person I can remember ever using this word is my dad.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 7:57 AM
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Nobody really wants to get into all the details of their marriage with their kids.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 7:59 AM
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100

Did everyone see the new Miyazaki trailer?

http://www.highsnobiety.com/2013/08/16/the-wind-rises-trailer-hayao-miyazaki/


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 8:56 AM
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98: Same understanding here. But I've got it from midcentury crime fiction, which was often elliptical in that area, meaning that I could have been confused.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 8:59 AM
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I had always read it, in context, as more of a synonym for "floozy" or "bimbo" -- cute, flashy, more peroxide than brains.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 9:06 AM
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101: when I came across it in a similar context I was very confused, because I'd only seen it used to mean "carpenter" and the ladies it was used to describe didn't seem to have any connection to carpentry.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 9:07 AM
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104

I had the same misconception until I watched Archer.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 9:09 AM
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104 to 98, 101, and 102. I have no idea what ajay's on about.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 9:10 AM
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What, you haven't seen all the "my boss is a Jewish chippie" bumper stickers?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 9:12 AM
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100 -- I'll bet someone here has.

One of the amazing features of the Ramona books is that they allow five year old kindergarteners to walk to school by themselves. "Remember to look both ways before you cross the street! Don't be late! I'm off to work." That's about as incomprehensible a world to me as the Hittite Empire.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 9:16 AM
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Well sure, but the guy hung out with Mary Magdalene so I didn't think anything of it.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 9:17 AM
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I started walking to school in kindergarten, I believe.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 9:21 AM
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Hasta la vista, God. It's me, Margaret

This made me laugh.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 9:23 AM
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111

I guess I stopped walking my kids to school when Sally was in third grade and Newt was in first (ten blocks or so). They probably would have been fine from kindergarten on, though.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 9:25 AM
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Fhtagn, Cthulhu? It's Me, Alhazred


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 9:27 AM
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Are you there Ahab? It's Me, Ishmael


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 9:30 AM
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I started walking to school by myself in first grade. But there were safety patrol crossing guards at every street corner.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 9:36 AM
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98: I'm not taking responsibility for the anecdote or anything. It seems like the meaning could have drifted between somebody's mom in rural Oregon in 1940 and actual slang people who knew how to use the slang would use. That or she thought floozies and bimbos sold their bodies too, which is also a possibility.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 10:17 AM
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re: 107

I walked to school in Primary 1. Aged 5.* Most of the kids did. So there was a little gaggle of kids trailing down the road, and a lollypop lady** at both the main road crossings.

* I was 4 when I started school, but don't think I walked on my own the first few months.
** crossing guard.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 11:00 AM
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Is there a contemporary story of 5 year olds walking to school by themselves anywhere in the US? It is definitely not true among my friends and relatives in eg Brooklyn.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 11:12 AM
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98/101/102/104: Same here. I think the only place I've heard that expression "in the wild" was in this song, which is great (while being admittedly creepy). I guess it could mean "prostitute" in the song, but I don't think it does.

Stay in the same comfy town, write the same old songs down, drive the same streets, / seek the same sense of dull peace, whisper the same sweet words to the chippies. / The same walk by the road, where the same ugly snow's finally leaving-- / But I'll fight off the spring, I don't want lovely things, I don't want the earth new.

Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 11:15 AM
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I would guess that at least 30%-50% of my girls' classmates walk to school at the K-2 building, though not all of them are unsupervised and the ones from farther away often walk part way with older siblings or neighbors. There are definitely some totally lone kindergarteners walking to school, but they aren't the norm. I walked the mile from school in first grade, but in a group with older kids managing the street crossings for all of us.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 11:16 AM
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That's about as incomprehensible a world to me as the Hittite Empire.

Hittite children also didn't walk themselves to school... just not in a way we can understand.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 11:19 AM
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My older sister and I walked to school when I was in kindergarten.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 11:20 AM
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I never walked to school until college, though I did walk home sometimes during grade school. For my last two years of high school, I drove. We lived 9 blocks from the school.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 11:23 AM
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Host: Teenage Moby is so lazy . . .
Audience: How lazy is teenage Moby?
Panelist: Teenage Moby is so lazy that it ought to count as accomplishing something.

Look, there's a reason that it was Charles Nelson Reilly and not me on Match Game.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 11:34 AM
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It was just the way it was done. My next door neighbor was in the same class and she drove there in her own car.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 11:35 AM
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If we could only go back in time and make Moby and his classmates carpool, maybe we could do something about global warming.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 11:38 AM
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And my dad drove his car to his office, which was across the street from the school.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 11:45 AM
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My high school was 12 or 13 miles away. Every single morning that I drove there, I nearly fell asleep at the wheel. It's a wonder I survived.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 11:45 AM
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127: Were you up all night partying?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 11:49 AM
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We just got almost 9-year old a cell phone because he'll be walking home from the bus stop in the fall (and be in charge of walking his almost 7-year old brother.) We practiced last weekend, I biked them the four blocks to the bus stop, kicked them off the bike, and said see you at home.
Michelle Obama says once the kids are 10 you can even do less than one adult per 6 kids! Of course every time I take my 4 kids out I'm violating the 1:3 ratio for younger children.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 12:07 PM
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I walked k-3, then we moved and I usually rode a bicycle grades 4 -12, sometimes walking. In grades 4 - 6, everyone went home for lunch, up to about 6 blocks.

As I have groused about several times here, about five of the 400 kids at my son's school (grades 3-6) ride bicycles, and my son is the only kid in the school who rides from our neighborhood, under two miles. Probably about 100 kids live in this section of town, all within bicycling distance.

Also, in this township it's illegal to let your kids walk without adult supervision or ride a bicycle to school before third grade.


Posted by: unimaginative | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 12:12 PM
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How old do they have to be to ride a bike to a pawn shop?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 12:16 PM
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Catching up way behind, but 15 happened to me EXACTLY except the word I recommended was "weird." This pretty much sums up my entire life of not understanding human interaction.

I also hated being laughed at when I was a kid, when I wasn't intentionally making a joke. Like HP, I had a pretty engaging sense of timing and an interesting way of talking, so people often thought I was trying to be funny when I was just, you know, trying to express myself.

OT: So all last year I was complaining that I live in Rural Seventh Grade where everyone is constantly gossiping behind my back about who I must secretly be dating or sleeping with, and it's like, duh, no one, and if I were, I'm not the kind of person to hide that information from anyone. New faculty arrives, including a handsome slutty nice guy, and we fool around, also with a friend of mine in town, and are definitely leaving it in the "not dating but certainly highly affectionate friend with whom I'll probably make out again" category. This is a category that, as far as I can tell, does not really exist in Rural Seventh Grade, and I think people would be sort of horrified if they knew. OK to hypocritically keep it a secret, after all my big talk about openness?


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 12:46 PM
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51: Thorn, have you tried The Magic Pudding? Just great.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 12:51 PM
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New faculty arrives, including a handsome slutty nice guy, and we fool around, also with a friend of mine in towni>

Wait, is this 2 separate incidents or a 3-some? Not that I'm curious or anything.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 12:51 PM
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I also hated being laughed at when I was a kid, when I wasn't intentionally making a joke. Like HP, I had a pretty engaging sense of timing and an interesting way of talking, so people often thought I was trying to be funny when I was just, you know, trying to express myself.

That was my childhood. I kept on being identified as having said acidly cutting things about adults, where I in actuality had no idea that what I'd said was funny. (My mother had access to all sorts of weird deals as a flight attendant -- all our vacations were half-price hotel stays to people in the travel industry, that kind of thing. So I had a very strong concept of discounts as something people got through work. And, it being the seventies, all the teachers in my grade school had raccoon fur coats. Asking my third grade teacher whether they got a discount on the coats was a perfectly innocent question.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 12:55 PM
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134: Threesome. Of which my girlfriend and I have had a great number, and for handsome slut was his first. So he'll probably be weird about it for a while and then get over it.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 12:57 PM
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OK to hypocritically keep it a secret, after all my big talk about openness?

Fine by me, but I never tell anybody anything anyway.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 1:04 PM
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I don't even like telling web pages when I want my tag closed.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 1:07 PM
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(A) Obviously, OK to keep it a secret, but (B) off the top of my head, I can't know how anyone else would react, but if you told people about it, I bet you'd get less weird reactions if you spun it as "My out-of-town girlfriend and I had a threesome with Handsome," rather than "Handsome and I had a fling and another friend of mine was involved as well." My guess about annoying seventh-grade-esque reactions is that they're largely driven by wanting to know who's heartbroken, or more broadly if anyone's feelings are hurt, and making it so that any relationship was you and the out-of-towner, and Handsome was a third party rather than a possible relationship that didn't progress, might nip that in the bud.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 1:07 PM
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136: Cool! I don't have a moral problem with you trying to keep it(casual, occassionaly physical, relationship with SNG) a secret, but I don't have any confidence that you will succeed.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 1:08 PM
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The earliest use of the term "friend with benefits" that this guy could find was 1997. I think it is time the phrase got introduced to Rural Seventh Grade.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 1:11 PM
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139 is brilliant. Blame the sexy out-of-towner! It really was all about her for both of us anyway.

Yeah, the larger issue here is that my many male friends here are totally boggle-eyed about my tales of casual sex or even just making out with someone I haven't intended to date. There's big talk about how sex-positive and queer-friendly everyone is, but the idea that a grown adult might occasionally want to make out with someone they don't want to marry is still experientially out of the realm of imaginability.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 1:11 PM
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||

OT: Last day for public comments.

|>


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 1:14 PM
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Also, 139 is great -- and impressively coherent for Friday afternoon of a stressful week (I'm just jealous).


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 1:27 PM
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I bow to none in my capacity to empathize with the in-theory-sex-positive-but-actually-kind-of-neurotically-nervous-about-everything demographic.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 1:51 PM
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145: Yes, this is precisely what's hard for me to understand. I think I am just sort of fine about most consensual sex--my own and others'--and especially casual stuff. Most of my friends here have only been involved with long-term lovers, and are alienated by the lack of heartbreak I feel. The handsome slutty nice guy (HSNG?) met me at a restaurant where I was with some friends from here, and he hugged and kissed me hello, and now everyone is waggling their eyebrows at me about it. I stopped them to inform them that we're both from a city where showing affection to friends is not reserved for romantic life partners. One of my friends keeps taking me to lunch to lecture me about the danger of throwing my heart away on handsome trifling men. I'm like, wait a minute, do you not understand who is the trifler in this situation? I am the one who knocks!


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 2:02 PM
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I am the one who knocks!


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 2:04 PM
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I don't understand how this Rural Seventh Grade thing happened. Didn't they go to college? Are you at the one college in the US staffed entirely by people who didn't go to college? There's no way the students there aren't having threesomes. Schools like yours are among the leading laboratories for studying the science of sexual combinatorics.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 2:05 PM
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Maybe they're homely looking, serious, and trying to get you to make out with them?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 2:06 PM
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148: The students are of course doing god-knows-what depraved sex stuff all the time. The faculty seem to be drawn from a uniquely introverted pool of very sweet, smart, clean-living loners.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 2:07 PM
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149 to AWB.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 2:07 PM
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The one who knocks?


Posted by: Bave | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 2:08 PM
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I'm imagining they're all earnest liberal ministers who are doing their best to keep up with their hedonistic flock.

Can you kidnap some and take them down to the lab, AWB? We need to study them, and figure out what makes them tick. We're forge Moby and essear's names on the grant proposal.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 2:10 PM
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149: That's possible in one case (not homely, but not self-defining as handsome), in that one man seems totally romantically interested in me but constitutionally incapable of physically touching me, lest, God, I don't know, he might explode into a fine mist. So it's weird for him to see how easy I am with other dudes. I don't know what to do about it.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 2:17 PM
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I asked my boss, who grew up in Brooklyn and then Long Island over I'd guess the late 70's and early 80's, and he walked to elementary school in both places.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 2:39 PM
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154: Lick his forearm.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 2:40 PM
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156 -- But she needs to wear a mask to avoid breathing in the fine mist.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 2:42 PM
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156 to 155?


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 2:42 PM
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156: I have tried this strategy, roughly. I kiss him on the neck goodbye, I cut his hair--he says he likes contact, but stiffens up. I say I'm no rapist. I need affection too. We are beginning a detente.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 2:44 PM
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Most of my friends here have only been involved with long-term lovers, and are alienated by the lack of heartbreak I feel.

I'm kind of in this category. Casual sex with a distant acquaintance or a literal stranger makes perfect sense to me. Friends with benefits, on the other hand... it's not that I disapprove, it's just that when I think about being in the situation myself, I'd think that if I had sex with (made out with, whatever) someone I was fond of, and the sex weren't offputting, I'd want to do it lots, on an ongoing basis. At which point if the other person agrees, you're dating on some level, or if the other person doesn't agree, someone's feelings are hurt.

Had sex, enjoyed it, remained in continued friendly social contact with the other person with no hurt feelings but no continuing sexual relationship just seems like it'd be, for me, an unlikely place to end up at. Not impossible, I can think of stories that'd get me there, but there would have to be a story.

This has been your daily insight into the thought processes of the in-theory-sex-positive-but-actually-kind-of-neurotically-nervous-about-everything demographic.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 2:44 PM
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||
My friend is considering moving, toddler in tow, from here to B/uck/head, GA. She is a Northerner, of course, and hasn't really lived outside of the cities before. Her life here is kind of a shambles. But if she goes, basically all she would be out is the price of a couple of Greyhound tix if she has to come back. What sayest thee, Mineshaftians?
(this is the same friend whose life is always screwed up)
||>


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 2:50 PM
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If you're a low-income person whose life is always screwed up, moving to a state whose government is refusing to go along with the Medicaid expansion is probably not the best idea, I would think.


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 2:56 PM
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What's in Buckhead? A job, a friend, a boyfriend, nothing at all but cheap rent?

For anything but a job, I don't think I'd do it. Getting stuck in a rural area without a job, it's hard to get one, and it's hard to get money together to move back to where the jobs are. (I say from second-hand experience.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 2:56 PM
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161, depends. I always feel like moving south is a tradeoff between low cost of living and toxic culture (racism, homophobia, etc), although it does depend on local flavor (and where you move from) how bad it will be. If she really hates cold and winter, it might be a good change. (I'm assuming you mean the Atlanta neighborhood not the town of 233 that comes up when I Google.)


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 2:58 PM
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Wasn't there that recent article on a recent study about how Atlanta is a particularly hard place to get out of poverty, because of the sprawl and shitty transit and so on? How it's very much a place where, to get from the place with cheap rent to anyplace your job might be, you'll have to spend 2 hours on buses, and so on?


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 3:00 PM
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Is this B/uck/head the neighborhood in Atlanta? Wikipedia tells me it's also a town with a population of 233, in which case, how would your friend have ever even heard of it?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 3:02 PM
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Oops, I'm pwned. If it's the Atlanta neighborhood, LB's "rural area" isn't really applicable.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 3:03 PM
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Right -- I googled and got the town. Moving to Atlanta, eh, I dunno. Could work out, could not.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 3:04 PM
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I an aware of all internet conventions places in Georgia.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 3:04 PM
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I'm increasingly convinced that Atlanta is one of the best cities ever. If your friend likes great cities, maybe it's a good choice.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 3:05 PM
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On the plus side, the Atlanta aquarium has whale sharks and beluga whales. Which seem to keep dying, and needing to be replaced. I suppose that could be taken as a grimly symbolic metaphor for the city itself.


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 3:08 PM
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160: Moving to a new city fixes problems only in movies, and not often there.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 3:09 PM
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161. Damn it.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 3:10 PM
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165, although I'm sure you're entirely right about transit, you might not realize that because there's no winter, cars hold up way better, so you can get away with a much, much older car. Insurance can be weirdly cheap, too, compared with other places - no idea why this is. Finally, community (neighbors, churches, etc) can be pretty good in a lot of places in GA if you're the right kind of poor, so that helps some folks. I think it's not too bad a place to make not enough money, but a terrible place to be really low SES.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 3:11 PM
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I had a conversation some time ago (with a bunch of middle-aged honkies in the financial industry, so, you know, grains of salt) about various cities in the U.S., and Atlanta was generally thought one of the most "closed" cities, in contrast with New York, SF, Houston, etc.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 3:16 PM
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I'm increasingly convinced that Atlanta is one of the best cities ever.

Have you ever been there?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 3:26 PM
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Maybe I'm wrong, but my major associations with Atlanta are sitting in traffic for a really long time and my mom's cousins who now live, like, two outside Atlanta and still keep moving farther away every few years when their neighborhood "goes downhill", if you know what they mean and I think you do.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 3:28 PM
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err, that was supposed to be "two hours outside Atlanta"


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 3:28 PM
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Insurance can be weirdly cheap, too, compared with other places - no idea why this is.

If you hit a pedestrian, the pedestrian is charged with bleeding on a licensed motor vehicle.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 3:43 PM
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177: I would like, just once, not to know what is meant, and to find myself delightfully surprised.

"Our old neighborhood was annexed by Disneyworld for a new petting zoo!"

"A sinkhole opened a dimensional portal into a world made of candy!"

"Three words: Jane Eyre cosplayers."

"Snoopy and Woodstock got a little too crazy on Saturday nights."


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 4:31 PM
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As a parent of a dependent child, she is actually in the already-eligible-for-Medicaid group, but it looks like Georgia's maximum income for adult Medicaid is 48% of FPL (if the person is working), so assuming she's single, that's no more than $7,444. She could get CHIP for her kid only at an income of less than 133% FPL ($20,628), but that drops to 100% when the kid turns 6.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 4:38 PM
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It was recently ranked the #1 place to be gay by somesuch pollster, which sparked a big conversation with everyone pooling tidbits about what made Atlanta great. And the one time I visited I was thoroughly charmed. It's really striking to be somewhere with a large black upper class.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 4:56 PM
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||

She's just so funny!

|>


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 5:51 PM
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Jane Eyre furries in a world made of candy. I think... I think there's someone at the door.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 6:36 PM
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I bow to none in my capacity to empathize with the in-theory-sex-positive-but-actually-kind-of-neurotically-nervous-about-everything demographic.

I could give you a run for your money.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 7:03 PM
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183 is super-cute.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 7:06 PM
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Wierdly, Jane Eyre furries and furry Janeites return nothing, even in the HP fanfic. Also the intertubes led me to Macklemore -- seriously? I must be old.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 7:12 PM
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161: Does this person run in punk/activist circles? I ask, because when I went through Atlanta on tour with a band we had a very bad experience with a local band and some of their fans. I came away with a pretty bad taste in my mouth about the Atlanta punk scene, but it might have just been a few assholes being assholes.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 8:43 PM
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172 gets it exactly right.


Posted by: Opinionated Constantine Cavafy | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 9:01 PM
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Apparently I was a very high strung little kid, who cried all the time in pre-kindergarten, apparently. I don't remember the crying, but I do remember my parents sitting me down and telling me to toughen up. They also teased me, and let me know that any response but good natured self deprecation was not appropriate. As long as it's not an excuse for abuse, I think it's very important to thicken the skins of sensitive children.* The hard thing is if it's done poorly the kid just becomes more sensitive, but being around overly sensitive adults whose parents never told them to get over themselves makes me really appreciate my parents in retrospect.

*Though, I don't know. My grandmother's parenting style was a cross between the Tiger Mom and Friedrich Nietzsche, and she certainly thought "self esteem" was an invention of the weak to feel better about themselves. Her goal was to raise strong children who could deal with whatever, and she was quite successful at that. It's hard to know if the toughness is because of or in spite of what would probably be considered verbal & emotional abuse by 21st UMC American parenting mores. While I'm digressing, sometimes I wonder to what extent are we 'damaged' by things because we expect to be damaged, or because we recognize that we are the recipients of stigmatized behavior? Does modern 'therapy culture' simply create weakness or sensitivity where none would have existed, or allow us to acknowledge damages to our psyche we otherwise would have swept under the rug or self-medicated?


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 9:02 PM
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Oh, that was me, if you couldn't tell by the "formidable" grandmother comment.


Posted by: Britta | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 9:02 PM
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On the other hand sometimes moving to New York is for the best.


Posted by: Constantine Cavafy | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 9:10 PM
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Hm, in that comment it should be "it wasn't their desire", not "it was their desire". Cf. this more accurate transcription.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 9:11 PM
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Sweeping under the rug and self-medication are bad now?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 9:12 PM
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You can't "like" dignity on Facebook, Moby, and you can't retweet grace under pressure.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 9:25 PM
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Not that precisely, no.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 9:27 PM
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Ugh, and now (update!) I went out to dinner with HSNG and a bunch of important staff members with whom I'm not particularly close, and he spent the whole night with his hands on my thighs, etc. Again, where I come from, potentially just really friendly, but in Rural Seventh Grade, that's wedding-ring shit.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 10:16 PM
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What's the downside to just rolling with it and letting the Seventh Graders freak out if they want?


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 10:20 PM
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I mean, I can see that there is a downside, but it's not clear that it outweighs the potential upside.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 10:21 PM
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It doesn't bother me around these people because they're welcome to think what they like (and I'm pretty sure they're thinking that I've surprised them) but I have noticed how weird it's made my not-entirely-non-romantic friendships with other more distant men. It will alienate people if he's halfway up my skirt at every party. And I don't think either of us wants to date each other in a serious way. He asked me to come up again tonight after we'd been in and then shopping for late-night snacks and booze, and I was all, yeah, I...


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 10:32 PM
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I should add, come up, no doubt, to talk about other girls he wants to date and then make out. Neither of us is serious about the other.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 10:33 PM
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200: Ah, okay, that's a reasonable concern.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 10:42 PM
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To be fair, I am a total slut, and have been really honest about this with everyone, and it's just that up until now my sluttiness has been purely theoretical, like, oh yes, we acknowledge your right to be slutty in the land of the free, respected colleague. When someone asks if HSNG and I are intimate and not just real friendly, the answer is yes and that's true.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 10:44 PM
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I am really happy to hear about this guy, btw. You seemed so frustrated before.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 10:44 PM
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I am still frustrated. But it's nice to not be treated like I'm radioactive.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 10:49 PM
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Quite.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-16-13 10:51 PM
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I, of course, am also still frustrated. Not that that will be a surprise to anyone.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 12:07 AM
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As a parent of a dependent child, she is actually in the already-eligible-for-Medicaid group, but it looks like Georgia's maximum income for adult Medicaid is 48% of FPL (if the person is working), so assuming she's single, that's no more than $7,444. She could get CHIP for her kid only at an income of less than 133% FPL ($20,628), but that drops to 100% when the kid turns 6.

This is one reason why America is deeply fucked up. That is all.

AWB,

As a sex positive person who reads as frigid by most North American standards and who is not used to or good at casually touching friends or strangers, the one guy (not the handsome slutty one) really might want you to keep touching him, despite body language. It might be hard for you to tell, but does he clam up like he wants you to actually stop, or does he clam up like he wants you to never stop, but is uncomfortable with the thought of letting loose sexually? If it's the latter, practice can open him up, if you're willing to work on it. It could also be he thinks he's sending out "I wanna have sex" signals with his behavior, except it's way to subdued for you to pick up on, if you're more used to open affection. I'm dating my current partner because the second time I met him, I thought he was seriously hitting on me, and uncharacteristically, decided to be more proactive in hitting on him than my usual, which is to act even more reserved and hope the guy picks up on my secret brainwaves. Later on I found out he hadn't been hitting on me at all, he was just being Italian.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 12:17 AM
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That was also me.


Posted by: Britta | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 12:18 AM
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As a sex positive person who reads as frigid by most North American standards and who is not used to or good at casually touching friends or strangers, the one guy (not the handsome slutty one) really might want you to keep touching him, despite body language.

This, definitely, with the caveat that AWB of course knows much more about the specifics of the situation than we do and is in a better position to interpret the guy's behavior.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 12:45 AM
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207: But are you radioactive? I'm starting to think something like that must be my problem.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 4:20 AM
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I think it's very important to thicken the skins of sensitive children.

Ugh. Telling a sensitive child to "toughen up," IMO/E doesn't thicken their skins so much as drive them to retreat behind self-protective wall in the knowledge that their feelings don't matter. If you want to help a sensitive child develop resilience, then meet their sensitivity with compassion and provide them with a sense of security - knowledge that their feelings will be cared for and their needs met. Some folks actually consider sensitivity a good thing that we don't want to drive out of the people around us.


Posted by: Di "Sensitive Child" Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 6:15 AM
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3 YO Rilee Jacobian had a spectacular tantrum yesterday when her dinner was taken away (after an absurdly long interval of not eating it). Her usual reaction is crying, but this time there was a large component of angry. She was shouting and physically trying to take it back from Bonsaisue. She yelled and yelled for quite some time after being escorted to her room.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 6:30 AM
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sometimes I wonder to what extent are we 'damaged' by things because we expect to be damaged, or because we recognize that we are the recipients of stigmatized behavior?

I think this is true to a very significant degree. It seems almost obvious that the message that you are being treated with disrespect is more harmful than the actual treatment in many cases. But it gives parents/educators less freedom of action than you would think, because 'stigma' is determined by wider cultural norms and not any individual parent.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 6:57 AM
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Britta, that's basically what the guy has told me about himself, and I patiently explain that I am not a rapist. Like, I can't continually hug and manhandle people who don't give me anything back. It makes me feel awful and abusive. And I want affection, too! It seems terribly unfair that for a year I've been initiating all physical contact and I get none in return. The only time he's ever willingly hugged me was when we met up out of town. I appreciate that some people are more shy than others, but after a year of giving affection, I'm getting a little resentful about not receiving any.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 7:18 AM
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Ugh. Telling a sensitive child to "toughen up," IMO/E doesn't thicken their skins so much as drive them to retreat behind self-protective wall in the knowledge that their feelings don't matter. If you want to help a sensitive child develop resilience, then meet their sensitivity with compassion and provide them with a sense of security - knowledge that their feelings will be cared for and their needs met. Some folks actually consider sensitivity a good thing that we don't want to drive out of the people around us.

Well, it's a balance. I know people who use "why can't you take a joke" to disguise their cruelty, and I know 'sensitive' people who use their sensitivity as a bludgeon and make people around them walk on eggshells all the time. I agree that some sensitivity is important, but I definitely think one can be over sensitive. Also, I would say there's a difference between good natured teasing in which no one takes themselves seriously or is designed to make someone feel better and mean teasing meant to hurt. E.g. inventing silly nicknames for oneself and friends is an example of the former, teasing someone about their weight is an example of the latter.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 7:20 AM
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Britta, that's basically what the guy has told me about himself, and I patiently explain that I am not a rapist. Like, I can't continually hug and manhandle people who don't give me anything back. It makes me feel awful and abusive. And I want affection, too! It seems terribly unfair that for a year I've been initiating all physical contact and I get none in return. The only time he's ever willingly hugged me was when we met up out of town. I appreciate that some people are more shy than others, but after a year of giving affection, I'm getting a little resentful about not receiving any.

Yeah, that's understandable, and it sounds like the guy is an extreme case. Again, I don't know if it's worth the investment to you, but what the guy might need is very clear signals and instructions from you on how and when to initiate, or even on how to touch you. He might know and agree with everything you say in theory, but then not know how to carry it out in practice. This might sound weird, but if you're not used to touching people, it's really hard to touch someone in an affectionate manner, even if you really want to. Holding someone's hand, putting your arm around them, or even brushing something off their sleeve feels strange and unintuitive. I had a boyfriend who had the same problem you're having with this guy with me, if we were sitting on the couch, he would say, "this is when you put your hand on my knee," or, "it would be nice if you leaned against me." It wasn't very sexy at first, but I did get way better about touching.

Also, ironically given how he's making you feel, but he could also be irrationally petrified of making an unwanted advance on you. His attitude could be, "I am up for anything all the time, so I'll wait for her to initiate because then I know she's interested as well." (Yes, I used to think along these lines as well, and never initiate anything.) Again, this can be trained away, but it might take awkward unsexy metapragmatic instructions at the start. This is obviously just internet speculation from strangers and it could be something completely different (weird religious hangups? secretly an android?), but the vibe he's giving off is similar to the one I apparently used to give off.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 7:37 AM
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grr. those were both posted by me.


Posted by: Britta | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 7:37 AM
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217 is all pretty much verbatim stuff he has said--especially the "I'm available all the time and I will allow other people to do as they please" thing. I have tried to counter this with stories about how painful it is to be the recipient of come-ons that invite me to do everything, that I too am shy and require validation, and that often people who invite me to come onto them then reject me, with plausible deniability. I'm sure he thinks that meaningful eye contact and accidental-seeming knee-touching is loud and clear, but it really isn't, which is why (I suppose) he's a bit freaked by HSNG, who is handsy as hell. Handsiness is next to Godliness.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 7:50 AM
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I don't mean to be unsympathetic here. I was, for a long time, very sympathetic. But once it's something you've had numerous conversations about, and I've made it clear that I'm pulling back--I can't go on doing the awkward unrequited thing--I have to assume it's just not worth it to him.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 7:54 AM
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I don't mean to be unsympathetic here. I was, for a long time, very sympathetic. But . . . I've made it clear that I'm pulling back--I can't go on doing the awkward unrequited thing--I have to assume it's just not worth it to him.

That does sound like a recipe for hurt feelings on one or both sides -- following up on the discussion above.

It does make HSNG sound much more fun.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 8:57 AM
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If this was a sitcom, AWB would use HSNG to make the shy guy nervous. Hilarity would ensue.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 11:49 AM
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I think that's what happens although it isn't a sitcom. Maybe if we film it and someone else sees it, it will be hilarious. I'm afraid what happens is that shy guy gradually stops being my friend, not wanting to get in the way of whatever HSNG and I are doing. I went by his house yesterday, as I have every day for months, and he didn't answer the door, though I'm pretty sure he was home. :-(

In the long run, maybe it's best, because he was never going to warm up to me, and being around me every day seemed to keep him from emotionally pursuing someone less frightening. But it would make me unbearably sad if that were the outcome.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 11:55 AM
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This is poor reading skills on my part, I'm sure, but I'm finding that I can't understand the situation with shy guy at all. I get awkwardly dancing around each other with the ambiguous touching that's maybe one-sided or maybe isn't being maddeningly confusing for everyone -- that is well within my awkwardly neurotic experience (and when I say within my awkwardly neurotic experience, I'm remembering experiences where I literally never figured out for sure if there was anything mutual going on at all.)

Once you've gotten him to open up enough about his feelings to have the conversation you describe in 215, though, how did he manage to bring the conversation to an end without clarifying what he wants out of interacting with you? At which point you could either go there, or if it wasn't something you wanted, explicitly not go there and abandon any sort of touch-based interaction with him.

I guess what I'm saying is that any difficult situation along these lines I recall came down to my inability to actually talk explicitly about what I wanted, or ask explicitly what the other person wanted. You sound like you're doing that just fine (being a sane adult, rather than the mess of barely-post-adolescent weirdness I was the last time dating was my problem), but it doesn't help to either get what you want, or give you enough information to tell you that what you want is off the cards. How does that (fail to) work?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 12:17 PM
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I deeply appreciate the double narrative of the sensitive, shy, available guy hurting AWB's feelings, with the dilemma of being cruel to the sensitive children vs having a more-sensitive-than-thou sweepstakes in the family.

But this set a hundred warning bells off:

The only time he's ever willingly hugged me was when we met up out of town.

That doesn't sound like someone who's worried about doing something you wouldn't like. That sounds like someone who won't do anything anybody else wouldn't like. Now, my instinct would be to write a scathing poem, not show it to him, and cool down like LN, but he clearly has charm and worth? If you invited him to an explicitly sexy weekend well out of town and took one of those foreplay dice games? And had the I Need Affection Too conversation in the afterglow. Maybe. Maybe.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 12:19 PM
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Yeah, it's all complicated and a lot is unspoken, even though much is. (a) I think both of us have been even more shy about this situation than we otherwise would be because I'm a temporary resident of Rural Seventh Grade and he is permanent. Every time I think about overwhelming his defenses, I remember that he's already lamented the future heartbreak of losing me as a friend. And there is a great deal that he wants that I don't out of life--marriage, kids, etc., all goals I don't have to worry about getting in the way of when showing affection for a flighty slut. (b) We were out of town around all of his old friends, people he cares a great deal about and feels safe around. I chalked the warmth up to the context of his feeling generally cared about, rather than anonymity. But he also has received as much speculation from our colleagues here as I have ("Are you two? *wink*") and seems to be deeply embarrassed by it--not because it's me (I hope/think) but because Rural Seventh Grade is a very embarrassing place to be, and even multi-year mutual relationships between single professional adults are obsessively hidden from public knowledge.

So all the anxieties we've had about falling in love, about touching, about future separation, about being speculated about, about our careers and life plans, etc., get yanked on pretty hard when some new pretty boy shows up at our dinner table, smooches me, calls me pet names, fills my lap with gifts from my home city, and sits there with his hand inside my knee.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 12:39 PM
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...and I can't even like vehemently deny that anything is going on, or that we've been naked together. It just doesn't mean to me what it would mean to him, or even with him.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 12:52 PM
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what it would mean to him, or even with him.

Well. That suggests a mutually heartbreaking intimate weekend out of town the week you move away.

And then he will marry a perfectly nice postdoc and have kids and a picket fence.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 1:37 PM
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Shy guy might also do better in a relationship that didn't overlap with work. Becoming romantically involved with one of your colleagues seems like an alpha-male kind of thing -- high risk, high reward.


Posted by: torrey pine | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 2:14 PM
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God, this reminds me that right before HSNG entered the picture, the shy guy and I had one of our not-exactly veiled conversations among other friends in which I said that I know he might find it shocking, but the possibility exists that human beings outside of Rural Seventh Grade could actually find me sexually attractive and worth pursuing. And he responded in kind that I might find it shocking, but the possibility exists that someone I'm very close to has been terribly in love with me for a year and is just now trying to work up the courage to do something about it. And then he blushed, excused himself, and went home. What can you do with someone like that? I can't stay celibate forever while he figures out how to declare himself.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 2:29 PM
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Yeah, I mean, given all this additional information it kind of sounds like you should give up on Shy Guy. If you've had multiple conversations discussing this stuff explicitly and still haven't been able to negotiate a set of mutually acceptable ground rules then it doesn't seem like there's much potential for anything to happen.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 2:32 PM
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As usual, tell me to butt out if I'm being nosier than you'd prefer. That disclaimer understood, what would happen if you invited yourself over to his place some afternoon, announced that you were interested in him (I think that's the case), that you believed the feelings were mutual, and asked if he wanted to make out? I mean, it sounds as if there's a possibility that literally the only problem is that he's too nervous to actually make a move, despite your general affectionateness.

If nothing this clear has happened yet, it seems like a rip-the-bandaid off method of getting either a yes or a clear enough no that you can stop worrying about him. It opens you up to unambiguous rejection, which is a reason not to, but other than that, what's the downside?

But if that's off the table, I'm with teo -- doesn't sound as if there's any level of going forward that maintains plausible deniability that will get you anywhere with this guy.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 2:51 PM
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The downside is that he's my best friend and losing him to mutual humiliation would be unbearable. But I feel like I might lose him just because he's a gentleman and doesn't want to get in the way of something between me and someone else that he can only interpret as someone finally able to give me what I've been asking him for.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 3:04 PM
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||

My girlfriend's parents are visiting her for 3 weeks and her landlord has told her that any visitor staying for more than 14 days is considered an extra monthly occupant and there is a $350/month charge for each extra occupant. This doesn't sound legal to me. With the understanding that none of you are my/her lawyer, etc, is it legal? (It's in LB's state but not city.)

|>


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 3:06 PM
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I've certainly never heard of any such thing, and it sounds wrong. Does she have a lease? If the lease doesn't say anything about this, she should tell him to go pound sand.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 3:54 PM
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The lease does state this rule, I just thought it was probably not a legal provision.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 3:57 PM
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Even if there is a lease term, my unprofessional guess is that it's unenforceable. I should know who to call, but a quick look at the DHCR website, which was my first guess, shows them handling rent stabilization/control but nothing about tenant's rights generally.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 3:57 PM
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I asked her how the landlord would even know how long they're staying, and she said the landlord's an old retired woman who told her that she'll be coming around frequently to check that her rules are being followed. Which sounds generally awful.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 3:58 PM
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She should try calling these guys. Might not be the right place, but they should refer her to the right people.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 4:00 PM
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Every lease I've ever had had rules like that. I guess that doesn't necessarily mean they're enforceable, but it's not an unusual clause.

The landlord checking OTOH sounds pretty illegal to me. Certainly in the city they'd have to give 24 hours notice before coming on her property.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 4:04 PM
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Thanks, I'll pass that along. She'll probably just pay the $700 because she's very conflict-avoidant, but I'll try to convince her she shouldn't.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 4:05 PM
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Rather the leases I've had have barred more than a certain number of overnight visitors entirely, not charged for them.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 4:09 PM
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240: My current lease doesn't have any clause like that, and I don't remember seeing it before but that doesn't mean I haven't. It seems weird for rent to be conditioned on number of occupants. If someone has a spouse move in or has a kid, is it legal to increase the rent? I wouldn't have thought so, and I would have thought this would fall under the same kind of rule.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 4:11 PM
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If someone has a spouse move in or has a kid, is it legal to increase the rent? I wouldn't have thought so, and I would have thought this would fall under the same kind of rule.

I've never heard of anyone actually doing this, but why wouldn't it be legal? As UPETGI says, provisions restricting occupancy are common in leases (mine has one).


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 4:15 PM
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Following LB's link in 239 leads to this, which spells out the rights tenants have in NY. It seems to say that there aren't a lot of restrictions on what a landlord can put in a lease.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 4:17 PM
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I can understand having a legal maximum occupancy based on the number of rooms, but restricting occupancy below that seems weird to me. Do you really have a lease that says you're the only legal occupant? Maybe it's normal, but I don't remember ever encountering it.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 4:20 PM
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My current town has strict town laws on number of occupants. The maximum number is kept on file, and you can't go over that even if the tenants and landlord agree. (I assume kids don't count though.)

My recollection is that my old lease was something like you couldn't have overnight guests more than 30 days a year or something. Obviously, they're not really enforced, but I'm not sure whether that means they couldn't be enforced. (Though again it'd be difficult for the landlords to figure it out legally.)


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 4:21 PM
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Do you really have a lease that says you're the only legal occupant?

Yep. Here's the wording of the clause:

OCCUPANCY: The apartment is leased to the Resident(s) for occupancy solely by 1 adults (age 18 and over) and 0 minors, consisting of (full name of each occupant)

Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 4:27 PM
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It goes on to say that the Resident agrees not to sublet or otherwise increase the occupancy beyond this limit. If they do anyway, the additional occupants have to be approved by the landlord and sign an amended lease.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 4:29 PM
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Restricting the number of occupants is one thing -- that seems legit. It's just charging extra for an allowed number of occupants that seems weird to me.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 4:31 PM
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MA has all kinds of weird rules about number of unrelated people allowed to live in a residence- specifically number of women, related to rules about brothels. When MIT first allowed residential sororities I think they were all in violation of various brothel laws.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 7:02 PM
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The limits on number of occupants often seems to be defined such that immediate family doesn't cross the line (you can have a kid or move your new spouse in without trouble), but you can't move in arbitrary roommates. I've usually seen it in terms of degrees of consanguinity/affinity.


Posted by: Nathan Williams | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 7:02 PM
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Oh noes, apparently that's just a common urban legend.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 7:04 PM
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Pittsburgh does have an ordinance against having more than three unrelated people living in a house. Students feel it is directed at them and I think they're probably right.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 8:10 PM
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My lease doesn't have a charge for extra people, but it requires new residents to be explicitly added to the lease, credit-checked, etc.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 9:03 PM
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Some occupancy laws were/are about keeping immigrants who aren't related from living in large groups.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 9:55 PM
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Here's something:

It shall be unlawful for a landlord to restrict occupancy of residential premises, by express lease terms or otherwise, to a tenant or tenants or to such tenants and immediate family. Any such restriction in a lease or rental agreement entered into or renewed before or after the effective date of this section shall be unenforceable as against public policy.

New York New York Real Property - Article 7 - ยง 235-F(b)(2).

There is actually some constitutional law that I've never paid much attention to that says you can't restrict family members from residing together. A case (or cases) about zoning ordinances or similar trying to keep immigrants or brown people out of a town by only allowing a certain number of people in house, or something like that. It's why you see laws limited the number of unrelated persons per unit.


Posted by: Bave | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 10:12 PM
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Next paragraph:

3. Any lease or rental agreement for residential premises entered into by one tenant shall be construed to permit occupancy by the tenant, immediate family of the tenant, one additional occupant, and dependent children of the occupant provided that the tenant or the tenant's spouse occupies the premises as his primary residence.


Posted by: Bave | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 10:14 PM
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This sounds helpful.


Posted by: Bave | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 10:16 PM
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Huh. None of that seems to directly address the issue of whether the landlord can charge extra for having another person.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 10:42 PM
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It is interesting, though, and a reminder that landlord-tenant law varies a lot from state to state.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-17-13 10:43 PM
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The lease on my Berlin apartment specified how many times a day and for how long I was to open all the windows to air out the place.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 08-18-13 6:51 AM
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Thanks, Bave.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-18-13 7:00 AM
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262: I wonder if there's a collection of interesting lease provisions around the world somewhere on the internet. Friends who've lived in Geneva all tell me they have a scheduled time to do laundry and are forbidden to use the laundry room at other times. Often they're forced to use laundromats despite living in a building with a washer and dryer just because they have something else to do at their scheduled laundry time.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-18-13 7:04 AM
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I guess if you had too many people living there you would want to air it out more than the lease allowed.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 08-18-13 7:09 AM
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I've heard the laundry-scheduling thing about apartments in Zurich as well.

My first lease, in one of the standard clauses describing the responsibility of the tenant for the actions of their guests, visitors, agents, etc., included "brainwashed minions" in the list. We had also discussed a clause that would stipulate that in the event of Armageddon, the landlord was to be considered on the side of Good and the tenant on the side of Evil, past actions notwithstanding. Didn't go for that one in the final revision.


Posted by: Nathan Williams | Link to this comment | 08-18-13 8:55 AM
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I had scheduled laundry times in my last residence. It wasn't a binding thing, and my landlords and I could ask each other to borrow days in case of need. But I guess their previous tenants were constantly freaking out that the laundry was in use when they wanted it, and my landlords were pretty slow to move from washer to dryer. I didn't mind; I had Wednesday to Saturday to get mine done.

I don't think that was in the lease, though. It was a casual agreement.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-18-13 10:10 AM
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It doesn't seem economically unreasonable to charge more for more tenants, since that will increase wear on the building (considerably, in my experience as a tenant and a landlord). The exception for family, especially children, is a moral one, not an economic one.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 08-18-13 10:39 AM
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Sorry to miss all the 161 responses! I was incommunicado for a day and a half.

I am not 100% sure if we are talking about the neighborhood or the small town. I'm thinking it is the former, but possibly the latter. The offer is: A friend and her husband and 2 kids (6 and 4) live in a big house, with a big vegetable garden and the kids are home-schooled. The husband has a corporate job. The idea is that they would share childcare, my friend could work, and get back on her feet. I am dubious, partly because my friend has a LONG history of fucking up situations like this. It always turns out that the people she was staying with are "controlling" or secretly conservative. If I was rich, I would just rent her an apartment, but frankly, I wouldn't be surprised if she fucked that up too. It can be very fatiguing to be her friend.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08-18-13 10:41 AM
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It doesn't seem economically unreasonable to charge more for more tenants, since that will increase wear on the building (considerably, in my experience as a tenant and a landlord). The exception for family, especially children, is a moral one, not an economic one.

In the US at least, it's also a legal one, as it's illegal to discriminate based on family status, which charging a family more rent could possibly be construed as.


Posted by: daughter of a housing lawyer | Link to this comment | 08-19-13 12:31 AM
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AWB

So, this was awhile ago, but given some of the new information I'm wondering if what is really going on is the guy is purposely avoiding anything serious with you because he's not sure he could do a casual sex/relationship thing, and if you have different goals on marriage & children, he recognizes there's no LT potential? If that's the case, I would back off trying anything and find someone else, because flirting with him is just going to be torture, and if something does end up happening, it mind end up badly for both of you and you might lose your friendship.

I had a similar thing where I had a huge crush on a close friend and colleague of mine for 2 years, which I'm pretty sure was reciprocated, but nothing over the level of plausible deniability happened, even though everyone in the department was convinced we were sleeping together. The sexual tension was crazy intense, but we both had a million good reasons for not doing anything. He ended up suddenly dating a 21 year old, which hurt terribly at the time but in retrospect I can see that getting out of a situation which wasn't going to end well for either of us while preserving our friendship was a sign of how much he cared for me and our friendship, and am very grateful.


Posted by: Britta | Link to this comment | 08-19-13 12:44 AM
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So, this was awhile ago, but given some of the new information I'm wondering if what is really going on is the guy is purposely avoiding anything serious with you because he's not sure he could do a casual sex/relationship thing, and if you have different goals on marriage & children, he recognizes there's no LT potential?

That's certainly one possibility, but based on what we know I still wouldn't rule out the alternate possibility that he's just so awkward and inhibited that he still refuses to make a move even after all this discussion with her about how that's what she needs him to do.

In any case, I think the real question at this point is how important this is to her. Obviously she values the friendship a lot, and worries about losing it, but is adding a sexual aspect to the friendship also a high priority? Especially now that HSNG is in the picture, it might be worth trying to come to an explicit understanding with Shy Guy that the friendship will be purely platonic from now on. Unless, of course, sex with this specific guy is something she still really wants, which may of course be the case.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-19-13 12:53 AM
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I suppose it's cruel to suggest that a shy guy who is too inhibited for a hug or basic physical flirting might be awkward and inhibited in bed, too. I sort of doubt there would be much reward for AWB's persistence.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 08-19-13 5:31 AM
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the idea that a grown adult might occasionally want to make out with someone they don't want to marry is still experientially out of the realm of imaginability.

Who ARE these people?

I kiss him on the neck goodbye, I cut his hair--he says he likes contact, but stiffens up

Oh, lordy. Some fruit's just too low even for apo.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-19-13 5:57 AM
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And he responded in kind that I might find it shocking, but the possibility exists that someone I'm very close to has been terribly in love with me for a year and is just now trying to work up the courage to do something about it. And then he blushed, excused himself, and went home. What can you do with someone like that? I can't stay celibate forever while he figures out how to declare himself.

Was that not what he was doing right then?



Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 08-19-13 6:09 AM
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273: My limited experience suggests that once the veil of shyness is pierced by getting naked together all manner of wildness is unleashed. My experience also suggests that for truly boring lays you want to go with the most conventional people, the ones who follow the rules unquestioningly.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 08-19-13 6:16 AM
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276, I am willing to bet that my experience with shy guys, somewhat limited though it may be, exceeds yours. Your experience with shy ladies, I'm sure, vastly exceeds mine.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 08-19-13 6:25 AM
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277: Could be a gendered thing, it's true. Maybe the fact that men are expected to take charge makes for a more difficult transition from shyness to wildness. If so, that's kind of sad.

Anyway, I bow to your superior knowledge. Be it resolved that a lousy lay is likely not worth pursuing or fretting over.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 08-19-13 6:37 AM
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I'm sure there's a series of instructional videos that could be useful here.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08-19-13 6:40 AM
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Agree with 275. Is that really such a puzzling statement?


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-19-13 6:49 AM
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I'm sure there's a series of instructional videos that could be useful here.

There's probably a fortune to be made in re-branding pron as MOOCS.


Posted by: AcademicLurker | Link to this comment | 08-19-13 6:49 AM
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MOOCS
MOOPS
GOOPS
Uh-oh, Gwynnie.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 08-19-13 6:54 AM
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281 Pr0n Academy


Posted by: Barry Freed | Link to this comment | 08-19-13 6:54 AM
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Oh oh update! The shy gentleman has been out of town a lot this summer, and not seeing me as much when he's around, and finally today at lunch admitted that he started seeing someone in another city. I feel a lot more comfortable, then, with the rest of whatever is going on. (There were many caveats in his story about how of course it would be ideal to be seeing someone in our town, except for that it would make work very complicated for him, and probably be difficult for the maintenance of two careers and sets of life expectations and and and...) In the long run, I do think it will be a great relief, and I will feel a lot more comfortable with him, frankly.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-19-13 12:11 PM
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275, 280: Jeez, I know, right? But I still had no idea how to respond. It doesn't fix any of the reasons why we're not dating, and the fact that neither of us has considered it important enough to act on, despite everything, would lead me to believe that, if the first thing that presents itself to either of us on other sides is so appealing, it wasn't much to begin with. Or it was, but not worth it. I would rather keep him as a lifelong friend than lose him as a lover.

Whether he would be good in bed or not is really unpredictable, IME. Some repressed people are truly fantastic, and some who are very free with themselves sexually are terrible. And vice versa. But probably no one can live up to a year of flirtation's worth of expectation.


Posted by: AWB | Link to this comment | 08-19-13 12:17 PM
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There are some weird laws about maximum occupancy in MA which makes it hard to have 24-horu group homes, since you can't have more than however many unrelated people in a house. There are some great houses which are way too big for families which would make fabulous group homes, but it's not allowed. And then, we had one set-up which was for older, sicker people who don't exactly need to be in a nursing home who live in suites with a private bath, kind of like a dorm, which was not licensed by the Department of Mental Health. It's all weird.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 08-19-13 1:49 PM
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Did MA never have boardinghouses, or were they outlawed?


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 08-19-13 1:52 PM
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MA has them (as well as the fraternity/sorority/student group hosing licenses). They're just a different pile of paperwork and restricted by zoning, but it is legally possible to have, say, 33 people in a house (A large, once-duplex, 6000 square foot house, but still).


Posted by: Nathan Williams | Link to this comment | 08-20-13 7:16 AM
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"How to cook for 33 people"


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 08-20-13 7:24 AM
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There are some weird laws about maximum occupancy in MA which makes it hard to have 24-horu group homes

To be fair, 24 horus is way too many for one house.


Posted by: Annelid Gustator | Link to this comment | 08-20-13 7:29 AM
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(An awesome large, once-duplex, 6000 square foot house, but still).

I really liked that house. Not a pretty house from outside, but an excellently comfortable place to live.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-20-13 7:34 AM
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To be fair, 24 horus is way too many for one house.

24 Osiris, on the other hand...


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 08-20-13 7:48 AM
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