Re: A glass and metal kitten?

1

"The weight and heat of your smartphone in your pocket, silently whimpering for you, a glass and metal kitten with a small, fragile body."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 11:55 AM
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The net neutrality tie-in is bogus, but in the quoted part, annoying prose aside, the man has a point!


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:02 PM
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If you don't use the internet right, it will have to be taken away for your own good, and for society's.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:04 PM
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Sure, it's the same point as the silly video that Smearcase trolled us with last week. But what a gigantic blowhard. I am unwilling to grant him anything but how hard he blows.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:04 PM
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1: Those are really, really unsettling.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:04 PM
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6

Nothing makes me detest someone quicker than striking a nerve about how much we're all wasting our time.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:08 PM
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5: It's probably not taxidermy.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:09 PM
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Nah, I genuinely don't identify with the self-loathing of internet immersion.

I love the internet and also I like being outdoors and I like books and my friends, and all these things are compromised by the shit gruntwork of life, but not particularly by each other.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:11 PM
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Book and the internet you can do with the shit grunt work. This works less well for the outdoors and not at all with friends.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:12 PM
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Nah, I genuinely don't identify with the self-loathing of internet immersion.

Me neither. People who feel like the internet is a waste of time should do something else, for sure! Lots to do.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:13 PM
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11

Yes , yes , and thrice yes, to 8.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:14 PM
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12

The later Oz books had a glass cat. Not that that's relevant, just that there is prior art in the field.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:20 PM
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13

We can change things enough to patent it.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:22 PM
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To the OP, I get the concern about the Internet replacing lovers, religion, and knitting, but wouldn't replacing whiskey "grasp[ed] tightly in [one's] hand" be a net plus?


Posted by: widget | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:27 PM
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And also there's the observed fact that the Internet and alcohol do in fact go pretty well together, though I suppose that's a separate objection.


Posted by: widget | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:28 PM
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I wonder how often people used to grasp their rosaries while watching television, and in what way it was pleasant or desirable.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:29 PM
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It seems to be possible to grasp--even to clutch!--one's pearls at the same time as doing all this, I notice.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:30 PM
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14: But how many people have found lovers on the internet???

How many people have found religion? (heard a story the other day about how the Mormon virtual missionaries were by far more successful than the ones that walk around)

How many people have found knitting patterns?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:32 PM
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"We cannot champion Network Neutrality without admitting that the Internet is no Utopia."

We cannot champion [gay marriage] without admitting that [marriage] is no Utopia.

We cannot champion [Heebie U] without admitting that [universities] are no Utopia.

We cannot champion [literacy] without admitting that [literature] is no Utopia.

etc. etc. ad nauseum.

Or, to put it another way, go away.


Posted by: DaveLMA | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:32 PM
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16: Watching a Catholic televangelist, maybe? I assume such exist.


Posted by: widget | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:33 PM
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21

Nothing worse than a reporter with literary pretensions.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:47 PM
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22

Except a novelist with literary pretensions.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:48 PM
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If he thinks people can't knit and be online and watch tv, he should come hang out with me except that I don't want him to. Maybe with enough whiskey I could be persuaded.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:51 PM
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Ian Bogost is a writer, game designer, and contributing editor at The Atlantic. He is the Ivan Allen College Distinguished Chair in media studies and a professor of interactive computing at the Georgia Institute of Technology.

I don't think that makes him a reporter.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:51 PM
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How many people have found knitting patterns?

That was the moment when I first really got what a big deal the internet was going to be for day-to-day stuff -- I was in college, 1991, finishing my first sweater ever, and I'd mislaid the pattern to do the neck. I just needed the last four lines or so. In a moment of cleverness, I went onto rec.arts.knitting and asked if anyone had the book and could post the neck of the pink sweater with the bobbles, and I had it in under an hour. The ease of finding the needle in a haystack of the person who knew exactly what you needed to know struck me as an immensely useful interaction that would come up in all sorts of contexts.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:52 PM
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26

23: Can you do all those things and drink enough whiskey too?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:52 PM
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26: I thought that was a given. I don't recall ever having had sex with the tv on and can't speak to that, but that's because I hate tv. Whiskey works fine there before and after, at least.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:53 PM
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27: Sorry! I doubted you!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:54 PM
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I really like Bogost. Here's a good takedown of techno-luxury services. Agreed that the linked piece is written in a really pretentious way for some reason.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:57 PM
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30

I can't knit and drink at all. One beer and I'm dropping stitches right and left.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:59 PM
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31

I've only read a few things by Bogost and some I thought were good and some were like this.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:59 PM
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30 is me with math. I can't knit sober.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:00 PM
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One beer and I'm dropping stitches right and left.

I'm like that with rhymes. Wait, no, with my keys.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:00 PM
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The article is terribly written, but the idea that there are no costs whatsoever to internet use, and that any position otherwise is technophobic pearl clutching, is also super lame and delusional.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:01 PM
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Talk to the needles, Halford.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:03 PM
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36

I mean they're nice pearls. You look great, real classy.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:05 PM
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37

"'Internet unambiguously awesome and totally non-problematic,' say losers wasting time on Internet."


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:08 PM
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The article is terribly written, but the idea that there are no costs whatsoever to internet use, and that any position otherwise is technophobic pearl clutching, is also super lame and delusional.

Sure. Fortunately, this article is deep in purple prose pearl territory, so we're in the clear.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:09 PM
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39

Ooh, Halford is going to pick up the troll banner and charge into battle.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:14 PM
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40

You refresh monkeys are not even...


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:15 PM
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41

My daughter has used the internet since shortly after she could read, so there's no before/after with her and knitting patterns. She has and uses pattern books, but the online resources she just takes for granted.

Old books, which I struggled for years to find copies of, I can often find in .pdf online. And manuals, exploded diagrams and repair procedures, to fix anything you have. Time was you'd go to your local library and see if they had a general manual which might have a page or two with specs or a diagram for your model, or something like it. Hit or miss. In the last few months, we've done the garage door, dishwasher and washing machine, all with good well-illustrated procedures.

And recordings. Youtube alone has given me access to vast stores of almost unavailable music, so that following an interest, even a whim, I can have legendary recordings on my ipod in minutes.

Why go on? I was a heavy user of research materials before, but my capacity to find what I want has exploded with the internet.


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:15 PM
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42

(There's a road named "Halford" in the south bay, I've recently learned.)


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:15 PM
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43

"Person makes mundane point with pretentious prose, expects to be considered deep."

Come to think of it, are we sure this guy's name isn't Ted?


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:19 PM
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44

"The article is terribly written, but the idea that there are no costs whatsoever to internet use, and that any position otherwise is technophobic pearl clutching, is also super lame and delusional. "

If it wasn't for the stupid (tying the concept to network neutrality) the Atlantic would have never publish his article.


Posted by: lemmy caution | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:21 PM
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written in a really pretentious way for some reason

Never underestimate the power of a deadline or a project you just want to move on from to make you stupid.


Posted by: Criminally Bulgur | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:22 PM
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And I'm just kidding. There are huge drawbacks to internet-dependence, though maybe not as huge as the ubiquity of tvs. I am very grateful not to have a smartphone and will hold off as long as I can, though I have an iPad that serves a similar purpose. I just think this guy was being stupid.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:23 PM
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Insofar as the internet replaced movies and TV as an obsession for people it can only be good, right?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:24 PM
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48

Speaking of net neutrality, here's the actual notice of proposed rulemaking at last, despite the best efforts of the FCC to bury the details under spin.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:28 PM
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49

Obviously, the internet is a net positive. I do think there are qualitatively different and great aspects to deviceless socializing and solitude that it would be a shame if people didn't experience periodically, but it would take a much better article to convey that.


Posted by: Criminally Bulgur | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:30 PM
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50

Here's a crazy thought, you all-or-nothing weirdos: the internet isn't so great for some people, for others it's just fine, and for still others it's a real boon. Sometimes it might even be all of those things for the same person! Or maybe at different times it's different things to the same or different people!

I do, though, tend to think the chronic wasters of time -- which is a real cost of the internet for some people (or so I'm led to believe) -- would, were the browser with which they browse the web plucked from their clutching cave-fish-white claws, just find another way to waste time.


Posted by: Ray Cyst | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:33 PM
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51

As one of those, yes and no. I would probably waste at least 75% as much time, and I would waste it in a stupider, less valuable way (paper clip sculpture and the like). On the other hand, I'm pretty sure there's at least some volume effect, and it can be significant sometimes.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:35 PM
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52

I mean, I waste shitloads of time whether I'm on the net or not. It's just what I do.


Posted by: Ray Cyst | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:36 PM
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53

LB is right--there's a mindless/addictive quality to clicking around, refreshing, checking this site and that feed and the other account. Ever since I started using the SelfControl app, I am definitely and noticeably more productive.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:37 PM
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54

51 seems irrefutably true. Also, I think accrued value of what the internet provides me is substantial and often harder to quantify than the time wasted.


Posted by: Ray Cyst | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:38 PM
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53: whenever I find myself serially hitting refresh, I turn off my computer and read a book. Or murder a hobo. I just hate myself a lot -- even more than usual! -- when I start refreshing like that, so I don't do it much.


Posted by: Ray Cyst | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:41 PM
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56

read a book. Or murder a hobo

See, deep down, you can't help but be productive.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:45 PM
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57

Well internet made it possible to locate potential documents for kid's performance, but Harvard library procedures likely going to make it impossible to actually obtain scans in time. This makes me really sad because he is DYING to take a crack at writing a piano reduction. Also, silly of school to wait til last minute but on other hand you'd think the bo/shoi school would have this.

This is how it usually works for me, find obscure thing via internet, but actual object (book, music, DVD) not available online. Thank god for interlibrary loan.


Posted by: dairy queen | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:46 PM
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Hey Ray,

Can I ask you to reconsider your pseudonym, which makes me cringe every time I see it? You should of course do whatever your ``inner voice'' requests, but I'm just saying, it's kinda weird.

Yours,
Neb Nosflow


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:48 PM
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59

I think he has a point (although he skips over it to jeremiadize) about how net neutrality continues to talk about the free, open, democratic internet when more and more our daily internet activities are dominated by huge companies, regardless of whatever rules exist now.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:51 PM
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60

Might I suggest "Alfredrick Blues?"


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:58 PM
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58: I wouldn't have thought to ask, but yeah, me too. Particularly given your circumstances (even without my actively screwing it up, you're generally not all that anonymous, and you're having issues with your internet footprint. I'm figuring you really wouldn't want comments under this pseud associated with your real life name, regardless of how innocuous the substance of those comments are.) (Although, can I say how bad I am at this sort of thing? I looked at the pseud and wondered what it meant for a while, gave up, and only got it hours later.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:02 PM
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62

Marcellus Flawless?


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:09 PM
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63

I'm not claiming the internet is a utopia for everyone ever. I'm claiming this piece is stupidly pretentious.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:09 PM
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64

Papa Slow?


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:11 PM
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65

Less subtly, Slopa?


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:12 PM
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66

Dallas Cottagecheese?


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:13 PM
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67

Rhyme Droppa. Show Stoppa.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:14 PM
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68

Lou Henesecca?


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:14 PM
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69

Wry Cooter is still available.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:14 PM
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70

Minute Bull? (Bonus: you can repeatedly correct people's mental pronunciation of it.)


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:17 PM
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71

58 And I thought I'd hated the last one.


Posted by: Barry Freed | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:18 PM
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72

Even though I did like the character.


Posted by: Barry Freed | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:19 PM
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73

Uwe Blob?


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:20 PM
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74

62 is not really thematically appropriate, and I withdraw the suggestion.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:21 PM
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75

No one will ever better Teary Ennui. Why am I even trying? Probably because I don't have a cat.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:22 PM
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76

This conversation has made me realize that I don't care one way or the other and that changing my original pseud, which I quite liked, was dumb. I mean, that I've managed to offend someone somewhere isn't really all that surprising. That the offended party is saying that they're offended isn't really all that surprising. Now, if they actually bother trying to do something about being offended, that would be very surprising.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:26 PM
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77

The only safe pseud is no pseud. We'll just assume all unsigned comments are from the same person. What could go wrong?


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:27 PM
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76: If I didn't know better I'd think you were displacing your anxiety about other things onto this whole pseud situation.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:27 PM
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And yeah, I hated seeing that pseud in the sidebar (same with the other one, actually). So thanks for saying something, neb. No! Thanks for caring enough to have bothered saying something!


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:28 PM
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80

The Return of the Dutch Cookie!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:28 PM
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81

In my view, if you have the opportunity to put a "von" in your name, you should use it.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:28 PM
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82

I am Spartacus.


Posted by: Opinionated Spartacus | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:28 PM
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83

I was really hoping for Lou Henesecca.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:28 PM
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78: I am very anxious about having met you in person. I've been sweating ever since.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:29 PM
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85

Of course, that could be the cholera.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:29 PM
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86

I hear there's a book out there that cures cholera.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:30 PM
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Only available through interlibrary loan, tho.


Posted by: dairy queen | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:47 PM
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88

Jar Jar R. Martin is available.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:52 PM
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89

Jar Jar R. Martin

Fine. Lulu Henesecca.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:55 PM
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90

I propose a general rule, cousin to the analogy ban, that any article that boils down to "X is not a panacea/utopia" can be safely discounted.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 3:04 PM
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91

That rule won't solve all our problems.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 3:06 PM
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90: Are you drawing an analogy to the analogy ban? That is no panacea/utopia.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 3:06 PM
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93

General rules are not a panacea, minivet.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 3:06 PM
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94

Being pwned is not a utopia.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 3:07 PM
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95

Violating the analogy ban is not an apologia, heebie.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 3:34 PM
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96

A kitten is not a cell phone.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 3:36 PM
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97

Ceci n'est pas un thread.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 3:51 PM
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96: Then who have I been talking to?


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 4:04 PM
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99

Mew've been catwinked.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 4:05 PM
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100

||

Amazed, though perhaps I shouldn't be, at the extent to which Steve Levitt has deliberately turned himself into a towering dolt:

They told [David Cameron] that the U.K.'s National Health Service -- free, unlimited, lifetime heath care -- was laudable but didn't make practical sense. "We tried to make our point with a thought experiment," they write. "We suggested to Mr. Cameron that he consider a similar policy in a different arena. What if, for instance...everyone were allowed to go down to the car dealership whenever they wanted and pick out any new model, free of charge, and drive it home?"
Rather than seeing the humor and realizing that health care is just like any other part of the economy, Cameron abruptly ended the meeting...

As well he might.

|>


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 4:42 PM
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Bogost actually did a pretty funny thing at GDC (which it turns out was also in The Atlantic) written from a future perspective about how game developers are nuts.

Hmm. That doesn't sound all that funny, but it was.


Posted by: DaveLMA | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 4:45 PM
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I was considering my time wasting/procrastinating habits on the drive home. Before Facebook I wasted time on Unfogged and other blogs. Before Unfogged and other blogs I wasted time playing an online word game obsessively. Before the online word game I bounced between Feed, Suck and Plastic. Before those I was straight out of college in an exhausting job but I still managed to watch syndicated TV shows, a lot of MASH.

Before that I was in college, and procrastinated by hanging out in someone else's dorm room preventing them from getting things done. I also watched Simpsons reruns on VHS tapes and picked fights in newsgroups. Before that I checked TC Boyle novels out of the library. I don't think I would ever get a lot done in any conceivable universe, but I think there would be one in which I would have a more contemplative, sitting-still-and-reading-novels mind, and this one, in which I have a much more associative-jumping-between-topics mind. I admire novels k-sky, but it's mostly grass is greener.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 4:52 PM
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Yay for the return of VW!


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 5:29 PM
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104

100 = wow.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 5:30 PM
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105

"That might work in practice but it will never work in theory."


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 6:06 PM
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106

If the internet is so much a waste of our time, how come I'm so good at tunneling in Minecraft that I was to connect two tunnels more than 50 blocks below ground with no map when they were perpendicular. On my first try, too. As long as you don't count the try where I tunneled straight up into the lake.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 8:20 PM
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107

I do sometimes wonder how I could make real-life friends who are as engaging and interesting as you imaginary internet people. Maybe I could join a co-op, or find more hobbies to do with people. But real-life friendship scratches a different itch than watching people converse on the internet.


Posted by: torrey pine | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:16 PM
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108

What about glass and metal SEA KITTENS?


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:37 PM
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109

Go on.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:39 PM
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110

Did you miss the baffling PETA thingy I linked?


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:47 PM
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111

No, I had just momentarily forgotten it.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:48 PM
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I didn't mean that in a "did you not catalog my recent witticisms?!" way just I wanted to know whether to re-link it.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:51 PM
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113

No, I do remember it now, I just didn't catch the reference when I saw 108.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:54 PM
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114

And I do of course catalog all your witticisms.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:54 PM
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115

Well that is certainly a relief.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 11:15 PM
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116

This is sure a hell of a time to be awake. Hello, lunching UK commenters, and late night teo.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 2:06 AM
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117

I remember when I pulled all-nighters getting almost a bit affronted when there wouldn't be somebody on irc to talk to me at 5AM. Stupid internet.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 2:08 AM
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118

It's still closer to breakfast than lunch (temporarily UK).


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 2:21 AM
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119

I got as far as "As Evgeny Morozov argues" and then stopped reading, because I have found this to be a useful technique to save my precious brain from an onslaught of pretentious idiocy.

Then I started again because I wanted to read the kitten bit.

Sitting in front of the television, you grasp your iPhone tight in your hand instead of your knitting or your whiskey or your rosary or your lover.

This is a particularly peculiar list of alternative options.I don't know quite who would be expected to have them all as available things for clutching. I don't even have an iPhone. Or any knitting. Or any whiskey. Or a rosary. Or a lover, come to that. It seems to be aimed at a stereotypical old rural Irish woman. "Will you have a cup of tea, Father? Or some whiskey? Or a smartphone? Or a kitten? Oh, you will now. Oh, go on. Sure, it's only a tiny little one. Go on now. They've got metal in them."

And if your smartphone is producing noticeable heat in your pocket, you should get a new one, because this one is about to catch fire.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 2:49 AM
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This is a particularly peculiar list of alternative options.I don't know quite who would be expected to have them all as available things for clutching

It's metonymy, no? Or some similar device - he's not talking about the specific items, but hobbies, booze, religion and human contact. Not that I'm defending the article.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 3:12 AM
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100: Oh wow, they found a big enough crank and dickhead that even David Cameron could see through him.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 3:22 AM
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122

As long as we're not mad at the television. The iPhone, with its devil-not-a-word-internet is the unravelling of humanity.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 3:23 AM
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It's pretty impressive. Cameron sits down in a meeting with a right-wing pseudo-economist and bestseller writer and after five minutes goes "Hang on, you're talking bollocks. Get out." I didn't know that was even theoretically possible.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 3:24 AM
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Sitting in front of the television, you grasp your iPhone tight in your hand instead of [....]

Let's all fill in the gap with things we would otherwise be better off grasping!

-- your atlatl
-- your sword, black Stormbringer
-- pizza
-- Mossberg 500
-- in your foot, leaving your hands free to swing from branch to branch
-- your catamite
-- Ali
-- the archbishop
-- a bicycle pump made from a hollow iron bar


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 3:28 AM
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-- A nutritious breakfast.
-- Straws
-- Reality with both hands
-- your iPad since the screen is so much nicer.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 3:35 AM
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126

WHO WILL GRASP MUTUMBO TONIGHT?


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 3:41 AM
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A tisket, a tasket. A glass and metal kitten. Went to bed and bumped his head and didn't get up for his mitten.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 4:05 AM
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All this talk of grasping reminds me of David Cameron's repeated use of 'grip it' with respect to political/economic/social problems, which had clearly been focused grouped.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 4:07 AM
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It's 6 am and I'm commenting from the parking lot of crossfit because none of the dude-bros who work here have shown up and unlocked the damn place.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 4:08 AM
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@100,123: That's definitely a heartwarming story. Levitt's popularity is a symptom of everything rotten with current society. If only more people would respond to his shtick with "Huh...this guy's a bullshit artist and is wasting my time." Good on Cameron.


Posted by: AcademicLurker | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 4:21 AM
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Why should they, at 6 am? They're probably sleeping the sleep of the just.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 4:22 AM
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I'd be afraid that this is Cameron PR just before he announces very responsible cuts to NHS, because I share ajay's surprise in 123.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 4:28 AM
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Except for the fact that this story appears in Levitt's book rather than in the UK press, I would definitely agree with ogged.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 4:42 AM
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There's something charming about Levitt patiently explaining that a system that's been operating successfully for sixty-five years or so is a priori impractical.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 5:06 AM
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There's something charming about Levitt patiently explaining that a system that's been operating successfully for sixty-five years or so is a priori impractical.

Or indeed arguing that a system with lower per-capita costs than almost any other western health system must in fact have over-consumption.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 5:19 AM
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If the NHS works so great, how come it won't close tags for you.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 5:21 AM
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I could imagine Cameron thinking, "Maybe in 20 years, guys, but if word gets out I stayed in this meeting past that sentence, I'll be ripped to shreds."


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 5:26 AM
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If the NHS works so great, how come it won't close tags for you.

Because we don't have to pay for them. HTML free at the point of service!


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 5:29 AM
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David Cameron would be both the most intelligent and the most ethical Republican in Congress if he came over here. For example, his version of austerity involves raising taxes, not lowering taxes.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 5:34 AM
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139: Did you come back? I thought you were "there".


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 5:42 AM
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141

I think Tom Friedman just won the pundit gibberish contest: square people


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 5:45 AM
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People who aren't hep to the latest jive?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 5:48 AM
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It's hip to be square, as long as the kids are still listening to Huey Lewis and the News.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 5:49 AM
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133: When you consider the surprising nature of the story along with the source, I assume it's not true.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 5:55 AM
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Blockheads.


Posted by: Barry Freed | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 5:56 AM
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141: I have this theory that journalists are responsive to public opprobrium, but if that were true, Friedman would have long ago died of shame. He certainly wouldn't keep writing this ludicrous crap.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 5:57 AM
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To the OP, skipping the thread:

He does a very good job of capturing the phenomenology of what it is like to be a distracted procrastinator, which is a nice service. Of course, a real distracted procrastinator can get distracted and procrastinate anywhere, anytime.

One of the things I've learned from trying to meditate is that it is actually possible to get distracted and procrastinate entirely inside your own head. No external stimulus necessary.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 6:16 AM
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If you're bragging that you can orgasm without touching yourself, just come out and say it.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 6:18 AM
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145: no, Blockheads.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 6:18 AM
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149 +1


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 6:36 AM
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|| O'Brien then asked about Farage's claim that people would feel uncomfortable if a group of Romanian men moved in next door, pressing him to say whether he "would feel the same about a group of German children".

Farage replied: "I think you know the difference. We want an immigration policy that is not just based on controlling not just quantity but quality".

You know who else thought that Germans were of inherently higher quality than Romanians?

">http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2014/may/16/nigel-farage-ukip-car-crash-radio-interview-lbc|>



Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 6:48 AM
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100 is absolutely fantastic. It makes me want to punch Steve Levitt in the throat, but that's more or less my usual state of mind whenever he comes up.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 6:51 AM
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I wonder how many Friedman columns are stabs at new book themes.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 7:03 AM
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124, 125 -- I think one has to admit that Odin's list, in verses 84-86 of the Havamal, is definitive.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 7:15 AM
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119.4 is a masterpiece.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 7:38 AM
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Also I assume we have established, perhaps repeatedly, that "lover" is a word so icky as to makes solitude sound endlessly appealing?


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 7:42 AM
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Also I assume we have established, perhaps repeatedly, that "lover" is a word so icky as to makes solitude sound endlessly appealing?


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 7:42 AM
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It really is. I was giggling helplessly at the poor priest being plied with cyborg kittens.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 7:42 AM
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154 is pretty good.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 7:43 AM
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Repeatedly indeed.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 7:43 AM
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(Our non-glass-and-metal kitten is being very amusing despite the fact that all the internetting in the house has obviated her.)


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 7:44 AM
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Also I assume we have established, perhaps repeatedly, that "lover" is a word so icky as to makes solitude sound endlessly appealing?

This is my partner, and also, I'm happy to say, my lover...

http://fundozer.com/harry-enfield-and-chums-dutchpolicemen/


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 7:44 AM
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To the OP, I'm finally having to watch Frozen for the first time and Mara very happily got her iPod out during "Let it Go" and was able to match the video on her device with the video on the tv screen. She and Nia were delighted by this. They would also probably like a glass and metal kitten.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 4:10 PM
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I just experimented by placing my smartphone on top of my cat, but she got up after five seconds and sat down out of reach. I guess you have to start the hybridization while they're young.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 8:16 PM
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I like Olaf and his song quite a bit.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 8:22 PM
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