Re: Paleo Science!

1

I stopped after the first couple of paragraphs because there's no where to go except down after that start.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:16 AM
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I'm hoping the coming revolution in gut bacteria will keep me from having to eat less junk food and get more exercise.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:18 AM
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You know what's super fascinating? The enteric nervous system. Your digestive system has a hundred million neurons. A hundred million! What do they do? It's not really clear. You can do a lot of thinking with a hundred million neurons.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:18 AM
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3: Wait, Stephen Colbert was right?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:19 AM
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I devote those hundred million neurons to thinking about candy.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:19 AM
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4: probably? In general, yes? About what, though?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:20 AM
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I thought you had to eat the poop. If rectally inserted poop can get bacteria into your gut, maybe your digestion is too slow.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:20 AM
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Wasn't the original coinage of 'truthiness' about Colbert saying that there were more neurons in the gut than in the brain, and he knew that was true because he'd checked it in his gut? Something like that.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:22 AM
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About what, though?

"I like to think with my gut." At the Bush roast.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:22 AM
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Maybe I should get my poop replaced with the poop of a French person, so I can eat rich food, drink copious amounts of wine, and stay thin. Or maybe I should just start smoking.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:23 AM
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A hundred million! What do they do? It's not really clear.

This is exactly the kind of thing I mean: clearly there's a hell of a lot going on, and there are some folk practices that reference these things in non-scientific ways, but you have to figure that in fifty years, our understanding of body and health (and mind) will be very different.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:24 AM
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I thought you had to eat the poop.

My dog seems to believe this.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:27 AM
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Metagenome sampling is easy to do. I believe that it is the ease of getting a casually-designed and cheap experiment published which is responsible for the spate of publications.

Beyond the point that a high-protein, high fat diet need not lead to an increased risk of heart disease as long as LDL cholesterol stays low, I haven't seen much that seems reproducible. Soil and seawater metagenomes look pretty interesting, those results look reasonably robust.

I definitely haven't seen anything that seems relevant to ordinary life in the US. I'd expect that metagenomic diagnosis of some disorder would come first-- anything there? There wasn't last time I checked in 2013.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:28 AM
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8: ah, okay. Well, that's still wrong, as the brain has about a thousand times more.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:31 AM
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I've been doing the butter-in-the-coffee thing--just regular butter for now as getting grass-fed requires going to a fancy store in a different neighborhood--for the last week and a half and I think I've had more pleasant mornings because of it. The crash after lunch has been less pronounced. But I'm coming from a very low baseline of good nutrition.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:32 AM
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Ooh! This is kind of on topic:

Two neighbors (one of whom I've known since college) have children of matching ages, 3 and newborn. They were ostensibly going to share childcare when the new ones came, but in the event, my ex-classmate has gotten a 4 day/week (I think) job, and the other is basically doing full-time care for 4 kids. From where we (and another observer) sit, this looks potentially fraught.

Then we find out this week that classmate's daughter isn't taking a bottle well, so non-classmate has offered to nurse her. An offer that has been accepted. Next time I see her in the park, I'll have to remember not to call her Eurycleia.


Posted by: President Odysseus | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:32 AM
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15 -- nice. You should buy ghee over the Internet like a hoss.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:33 AM
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I stopped after the first couple of paragraphs because there's no where to go except down after that start.

Actually, it changes very quickly after those couple of paragraphs - going into the details of this research project they're working on, which seems like yeoman's work in trying to catalog the diversity of the gut biome in a hunter-gatherer society, and how it shifts seasonally and in response to interaction with the environment, like different foods. He has in a boldface section that he's not paleo, that they are not making assertions as to what diets are correct for people today. It also has people (although it doesn't say professors) from various prestigious universities. I don't know what the author's role in the project is.

What he's doing is odd, but it seems perhaps in the vein of early science, do weird shit and see what happens (LHF). They did extensive tests on the stool donor for diseases.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:34 AM
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Ah, I saw John Hawks' rip on this a few days ago.

That blog post is quite the thing - a syncretic artefact. on one hand, actual science (observation: the Hadza eat a strongly seasonal diet. hypothesis: their gut flora changes seasonally. experiment: go have a look), and typical anthro-relativist thinking. on the other, a whole lot of romanticising and essentialising, what I can only call diet bollocks, and a good helping of your actual crystals-and-vaccines woo.

I get the impression he was included in the expedition to advise the lab scientists about doing fieldwork with people - pretty sensible - but took the opportunity to go off on this self-experiment for his diet blog.

Has anyone else noticed that anthro is weird, or attracts weird people? (That sounds like the punchline of a joke. Better work on the joke.)


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:34 AM
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The post title is definitely OTT.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:36 AM
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That article was great but it seems over 60% that people are going to be selling Hadza poop at my gym in the next year.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:37 AM
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18: That's basically what I meant by nowhere to go but down.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:38 AM
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My call is that probiotic eating is the next fad eating among my friends who latch on to different types of purity diets. I am relieved. It is easier to accommodate than gluten-free, paleo or vegan.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:38 AM
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17: Hrmmm. Maybe I will.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:43 AM
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Ghee tastes a little different from butter; try it before you order a bunch.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:44 AM
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I still don't really know what a probiotic diet is. Does it just mean having either yogurt or sauerkraut with each meal?


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:45 AM
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I'm going to make a brand of ghee that comes in an aerosol can and call it "Ghee Wizz".


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:45 AM
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It would be kind of great if poop became a valuable resource indigenous people could truly own and exploit. If Hadza poop becomes valuable that's good news for the Hadza. Though it will create an interesting socio-legal problem about how to prevent the increased wealth changing diet, and thus interfering with the quality of the poop.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:47 AM
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24: there's gotta be an Indian grocery near you.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:48 AM
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Timely! Just yesterday we had a requred wellness class at my workplace on "The Good the Bad and the Ugly of Gut Health".


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:48 AM
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I've never used ghee for anything but cooking. Is there any particular reason to prefer it as a spread?


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:49 AM
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My call is that probiotic eating is the next fad eating among my friends who latch on to different types of purity diets. I am relieved. It is easier to accommodate than gluten-free, paleo or vegan.

Probiotic is, like, 10 years old as a fad over here.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:49 AM
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If anyone thinks their gut microbiome is lacking something, I can inform you that the comments thread is rich in hippie crap.

Do the Hadza have any spiritual/religious/dance practices that seems to connect them to nature?

although our intrepid explorer responds:

not really.

sickburn:-)


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:51 AM
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29: Oh, huh, there is. Also in a different neighborhood but more convenient to my commute. Yeah, I'll give that a try. Thanks!


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:57 AM
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29: Quite a few, but none that are closer than the store with the grass-fed butter.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 8:59 AM
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36

Stupid work call getting me pwned.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:00 AM
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Fermented foods have been a thing among certain kinds of food crazies for a while. I have an (otherwise excellent) book about pickling etc. that is filled with pernicious nonsense about curing autism etc.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:00 AM
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You could just go to where Katzenstein's used to be, stopping at Starbucks on the way, and ask them if you could borrow a bit of ghee for your coffee.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:01 AM
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26: I don't know either, but it is pretty easy to add a dish of something cultured to the table. Easier than finding where the Venn diagrams of my friends' foods overlap.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:02 AM
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35: I'm coming from downtown. The one on Craig is good for me. Is there a place to get grass-fed butter besides the upper-middle-class supermarkets on Center and Penn?

(I'm realizing this is turning into a very lazy ATM. Help me do my grocery shopping!)

38: Kazansky's. Anti-Semite.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:07 AM
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30: They served us miso soup and kimchee.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:08 AM
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where the Venn diagrams of my friends' foods overlap

It would be a fun (probably not M-fun) exercise to figure out what single, edible dish would satisfy the most diets. Or maybe not, because the answer is probably some kind of fish with a veggie.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:09 AM
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43

Kale. All diets love Kale.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:10 AM
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44

40.last: All Eastern European names sound alike.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:10 AM
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I've been thinking about getting int pickling, because our local store sells vast number of cucumbers, but has a crap selection of pickles. If I can cure autism in the process, all the better.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:11 AM
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I've been adding salt and lime juice to shredded cabbage and putting it on sandwiches and stuff. I think I'm almost making sauerkraut if I didn't eat it right after I made it.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:14 AM
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The combination that just about broke my spirit last summer was a group with a vegan, a couple gluten-frees and a paleo. We were trying to come up with several days worth of meals.

I would much rather they all believed woo things about their guts and I could provide with some kimchee and probiotic drinks.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:15 AM
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42: If you make it a peelable fruit, you get kosher too. Grapefruit, maybe? Any other citrus would be either maybe too sweet for a low-carber, or really not stand-alone food (like, a lemon doesn't count).


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:20 AM
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Is hunter-gatherer poop kosher? I don't want to have to call a rabbi and ask.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:22 AM
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49: Also, do kosher laws apply if you're sticking it up your butt?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:26 AM
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If they don't, I'd think somebody would have taken to selling butt bacon.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:27 AM
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a vegan, a couple gluten-frees and a paleo

But this is actually pretty easy: tons of veggies and a side of meat/fish/fowl. A side of platypus.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:30 AM
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Kale. All diets love Kale.

Antisemite.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:32 AM
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52: Yeah, paleo and gluten-free are functionally equivalent, right?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:34 AM
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53: Kale is kosher as long you inspect using Method B.

http://www.kosherquest.org/book.php?id=VEGETABLE_INSPECTION.htm


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:37 AM
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52: Yeah, paleo and gluten-free are functionally equivalent, right?

… no?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:38 AM
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Gluten-free persons may feast on rice, potatoes, quinoa, buckwheat, etc.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:40 AM
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... no?

I'm up for 500 comments about what "functionally equivalent" means if you are, but if you make paleo, it'll be gluten-free.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:41 AM
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57: Oh, right! Thanks, nosflow!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:41 AM
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You fucking threw me under the bus after I defended you.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:42 AM
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58: Yes, I guess there was a tiny morsel of truth in my comment.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:43 AM
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I'm up for 500 comments about what "functionally equivalent" means if you are

Awesome!

I definitely think that "functionally equivalent" ought to involve some kind of bidirectionality, and it's plainly not the case that an arbitrary gluten-free dish will be paleo-acceptable.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:43 AM
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That's actually probably right, but I thought peep, that traitor, put paleo first deliberately. More fool me.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:53 AM
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In an "if you perform this function, you will have performed that function" way.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:53 AM
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63: it was a put-up job from the first.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:55 AM
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66

||

The Lena Dunham thread has become too dirty for my netnanny. I blame Smearcase.

|>


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 9:57 AM
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I'm just terrified that sticking someone else's poop up your butt is going to become standard medical treatment for all kinds of ailments.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 10:05 AM
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66: Funny, I was just feeling strangely pleased and gratified that the paleo poop-injecting thread has gotten more comments than the Dunham thread.


Posted by: bill | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 10:08 AM
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I mean, maybe it will become commonplace to seek out exceptionally healthy people and ask if you can stick their poop up your butt. "Oh man, there's this woman at my gym. She is *so fit*. I really wish she'd let me stick her poop up my butt."

And then there will be a market for celebrity poop, and you know we will all have fallen into the worst dystopian future imaginable.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 10:09 AM
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How come? I mean, if that worked, that would be (a) insane and (b) probably way easier than lots of other things.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 10:09 AM
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70 to 66.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 10:09 AM
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72

We just created a protocol for stool transplants at my institution. One of the things you have to provide, as a patient, is a blender. 1 use only!

It gets filtered and turned into a liquid before it's transferred into the donor.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 10:09 AM
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73

You can't clean the blender?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 10:11 AM
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One of the things you have to provide, as a patient, is a blender. 1 use only!

Seriously? I mean, aren't hospitals/biological research facilities supposed to have the capacity to clean things even if they get gross stuff on them? What's an autoclave for?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 10:12 AM
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73: Blenders don't like autoclaves, I bet. Sterilizing is hard on equipment.

72: Y'all don't have disposable homogenizers? I want to see someone bring a Vitamix, just for sheer obliviousness.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 10:14 AM
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I've never seen us autoclave something with a motor or electrical components in it. Don't know if it's possible.

I suppose you can take the blender home with you, but it should only be used once for medical fecal purposes.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 10:15 AM
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60: "Hey, what do you expect from a Jew!"

I didn't make that comment, because that would be offensive.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 10:16 AM
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One of my vacation reads was a biography in which the subject spent a lot of time in WWII Japanese POW camps. The claim was that on several occasions attempts were made to infect particularly hated Japanese guards by incorporating feces from dysenteric prisoners in their food. IIRC correctly it seemed to have worked in one instance (or at least the guard appeared to come down with some manner of gastrointestinal disorder).

That seemed vaguely relevant when I started typing it.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 10:18 AM
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Okay, but the stuff being blenderized is inside the jug, which is cleanable. I mean, if this took off as a thing, it'd be insane to buy a new blender for each treatment. You don't buy a new toilet seat for each patient in a room, and that's about the same level of plausible contamination as the motor part of the blender -- ordinary cleaning handles it fine).

(I am irate about this for some reason. A blender just seems like a serious piece of equipment to throw away. Obviously, it's what, twenty/thirty bucks, so trivial compared to medical care generally, but that's not the point goddamit.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 10:18 AM
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76: A thriving wartime black market in medical fecal blenders should feature in the sequel to Gravity's Rainbow.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 10:20 AM
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66: Let's do science. Quoth Mr. Smearcase:

I vaguely enjoyed Frances Ha despite wanting to throw everyone in it into the sea. Noah Baumbach is confusing for me because he wrote the very sweet and funny Kicking and Screaming and then a lot of terrible crap including Wes Anderson's worst, The Life Aquatic.
Oh hey I knew a guy in college who went on to write a terrible mumblecore movie called The Puffy Chair. It made me want to have a child and then wait four years so I could say "my four-year-old could write a better screenplay!" Anyway now the guy from my English class is famous and pals with Mindy Kaling and stuff though his brother who he wrote the movie with is an actor and more famous. The brother was in that thing about two straight guys who decide to make a film of them having sex, which was also terrible.

If you get banned from this thread, let me know.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 10:21 AM
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79: Or we could set one up now and LB and Cryptic Ned could make a killing. "Never previously used to process food."


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 10:22 AM
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83

Maybe someone was bullying LB in the Lena Durham thread and her workplace cut off her access to protect her.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 10:24 AM
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84

LB, since the point of the procedure is to transfer bacteria, they have to sterilize it (using a procedure they can validate), not just wash it, so a regular dishwasher isn't sufficient. An autoclave will warp the plastic (probably on the first run) and rust the blades. I guess you could get a glass blender and reuse it, but you'd then have something that can shatter if the glass is weakened by repeated autoclaving. The thing you want is a disposable kit that's basically a mortar and pestle pair. $10/each, give or take.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 10:36 AM
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Is there a place to get grass-fed butter besides the upper-middle-class supermarkets on Center and Penn?

Pretty sure the Palestinian challah baker sells it.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 10:45 AM
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I bet he does. It's a small, curated, dairy case.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 10:47 AM
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87

Trader Joe's also sells ghee/clarified butter.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 10:59 AM
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If you clarify butter, in a certain sense, you have unfogged it.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 11:02 AM
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The Trader Joe's is right near all the other stores that would sell grassy butter. If we could get a Wegman's, it would be the grocery center of the universe.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 11:14 AM
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(I love Wegman's.)


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 11:20 AM
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An autoclave will warp the plastic (probably on the first run) and rust the blades.

I don't know, we autoclave metal things like scissors dozens of times and the only rusting occurs because we leave them in the sink too long and clean them with belch. As for the plastic, that depends on what type of plastic it is.

The homogenizers should work fine. But these protocols are all geared toward being completely reproducible in every way, and in this case also biased toward procedures that technicians will agree to do.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 11:27 AM
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clean them with belch

I hope the autoclaving is after the belch-cleaning and not before.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 11:29 AM
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93

You could just hire specialized techs with fecalphilia.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 11:29 AM
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clean them with belch

If that works for you, you could definitely use some more probiotics in your diet.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 11:29 AM
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I'm so glad I didn't go for the belch joke.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 11:30 AM
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96

As anecdata, I've been eating fermented pickle cucumbers every few days for the past month and my intermittent gut issues are greatly lessened. Beet kvass also seemed to help. Yogurt doesn't, but since I recently discovered that I'm lactose-unfriendly, that makes sense.


Posted by: Chopper | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 11:54 AM
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67 et al: OpenBiome is on the case already with prescreened poop.


Posted by: Nathan Williams | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 11:58 AM
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89: We are getting a new Wegmans in a town near me. On the same strip we will have Wegmans, HMart (Korean supermarket), Market Basket and Trader Joe's.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 12:24 PM
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85: Oh, duh. I assumed they only had finished baked goods. (Also, I didn't realize that was the Palestinian-owned bakery. D'oh.)

Also: hey, if you search for "palestinian bakery pittsburgh" without the quotes on Google, it considers "Jewish" a matching search term (also "Lebanese"). That's a little, uh, provocative, innit?


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 12:34 PM
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99.2: Maybe it's drawing from data on cuisine - although even there Israeli would work better than Jewish.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 12:51 PM
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Google's word substitution tends to the wonky anyway - it continues to act like biography and bibliography are synonyms.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 12:52 PM
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102

Why is the butter supposed to be superior to cream in coffee?

Most of my friends all went paleo as a challenge a month or so ago, except for the one who is vegan which meant that our parties and barbeques became a little more complicated than necessary. Main dishes are okay, but man there is not a lot of overlap in paleo and vegan desserts.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 12:54 PM
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103

I wasn't aware that a good dessert could be either vegan or paleo.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 12:57 PM
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104

102.1: More fat.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 1:00 PM
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105

This past weekend, I made a pumpkin pie starting with an actual pumpkin and a froze, commercial pie crust. It was very good, but next time I think maybe I'll make the crust fresh and get the pumpkin from a can.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 1:01 PM
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103: Vegan is easy. Paleo is a lot trickier (and to be fair, I'm less sympathetic because if you're doing paleo because you are worried about losing weight, I'm not sure it makes a lot of sense to bother with a paleo dessert vs. just having a small slice of cake or one cookie.)


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 1:04 PM
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Maybe I should go into business selling my poop over the internet. I think a simple website with a PayPal link should do the trick. I just need to figure out how to ramp up production.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 1:06 PM
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106: Maybe I just don't understand paleo, but I thought dessert at all was outside the realm of possibility. Honey? Combined with nuts somehow? Or dried fruit? But anything with sugar at all seems totally unpaleo.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 1:09 PM
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Maple syrup is acceptable for probably woo reasons. So limited sweeteners, and no sugar (which kills a lot of baking.)


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 1:10 PM
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110

There are lots of great vegan desserts. I've made vegan apple pie to strong approval (relayed to me when I wasn't present) by snobby, mildly vegan-hostile foodies in Berkeley who -- to make clear their snobby credentials -- are good friends with a Beard award winner and in the extended circle of Alice Waters.


Posted by: Tia | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 1:24 PM
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I feel like every damn body in Berkeley is in the extended circle of Alice Waters.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 1:28 PM
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Vegan desserts are great and not too hard to figure out once you figure out what to have on hand to be substituted for eggs. .


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 1:29 PM
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113

That and butter was what I was wondering about. I know of some butter substitutes, but I don't know what might work in place of an egg.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 1:31 PM
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Fruit pie is going to be vegan without any adjustments at all, so long as you use Crisco in the crust, mostly. I guess there are some recipes that have an egg thickener, but mostly it's a no-animal-product foodstuff.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 1:31 PM
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Pumpkin pie has milk in it and apple pie is full of butter in every version I've had. I guess cherry pie is easily vegan.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 1:34 PM
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This gives me a chance to go on one of my favorite rants! People think vegan desserts are bad for two reasons. One is that they have a bad vegan dessert, and then they don't have others, but they ignore exactly how many shitty non-vegan desserts they've had to eat for the sake of the really good non-vegan desserts,

and,

a lot of cooks of vegan desserts fail to recognize that in cooking, as in CS, you pick two. You can only satisfy two constraints simultaneously, and if one is vegan, the other one has to be yummy (Smearcase, I am a honey badger), or your food will suck. So a dessert can't be vegan, yummy, and healthy, unless it's, like, fruit or something. The problem with a lot of vegan food is that it is also trying to be healthy, and sometimes also gluten free, and that is a recipe for disaster. My old roommate had some technical skill at cooking and thought she was good at it, but she never, ever made "does this taste good?" her top priority. The only time I can remember having to spit something out that wasn't spoiled was this vegan, gluten-free, quinoa pudding she made. Luckily it was at a big, noisy party, so I could just scoot away to the bathroom.


Posted by: Tia | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 1:35 PM
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Blueberry pie might be vegan, but it's impossible to eat without ice cream on the side.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 1:39 PM
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118

There's a vegan bakery down the street from me -- I think Tia's Law holds -- their stuff is yummy, but not healthy.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 1:45 PM
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113: Usually the function of an egg in a recipe is to bind it together, so cornstarch works sometimes, flax seeds mixed with water to turn into goo, etc. But seconding Tia -- if you try to make a healthy vegan dessert, just save time and eat some cardboard. (or, you know, fruit.)


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 1:48 PM
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105 gets it exactly right.

Did I mention that I made avodava the other day with a pork butt that had a thick fat cap, so I figured what the hell, and rendered it? So now I have a couple small jars of beautiful lard, some of which will go into the dough for the empanadas that I will fill with the leftovers.

One complaint: the remaining cracklins were wholly untoothsome. Perhaps they needed more time, but I didn't want dark lard. Did I do something wrong?


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 1:49 PM
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I won't eat a healthy non-vegan dessert so I do see why I should start with healthy vegan desserts.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 1:50 PM
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A neighbor's niece runs a gluten-free/dairy-free bakery on the Upper West Side, and they're surprisingly not bad (called 'By the way'). But they're not vegan -- eggs.

Maddeningly, though, at least last year they weren't certified kosher for Passover, which is insane for a gluten-free/dairy-free bakery on the UWS. It's literally the only time in the year I'd want a gluten free/dairy free dessert, and they were no good to me.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 1:51 PM
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I've never put butter in apple pie, but I do (when I remember) in both cherry and apple. And I only use egg to wash the crust, which is pretty far from necessary (and presumably there are many vegan options for adding a little color to a crust).

I'd think you'd want to do something to bump up the flavor of a Crisco-only crust, but other than that, vegan fruit pies are pretty easy.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 1:53 PM
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I'm picturing a "Fiddle on the Roof"-ish scene.

"Pastry? The pastry is dead to us."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 1:55 PM
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125

This talk did not leave me feeling sanguine about the EPA's future ability to regulate greenhouse gases. But that was kind of reading between the lines of a superficially mostly optimistic talk. teo? Lawyers?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 2:15 PM
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Usually the function of an egg in a recipe is to bind it together, so cornstarch works sometimes

OK at a stretch for pudding or filling*, but there is no substitute for eggs in cake, the queen of desserts, where egg plays a key structural and textural role.

*But do not put your yellow vegan extrusion in an éclair and try to call it crème pâtissière, because I will scorn you.


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 2:22 PM
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127

something to bump up the flavor of a Crisco-only crust

Leaf lard! Oh, wait...


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 2:25 PM
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Further to 126: For that matter, I am deeply skeptical that one can make vegan pâte à choux worth eating, though google tells me that people try it.


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 2:28 PM
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I've been basically Paleo for a while now, and I'm not sure what a Paleo dessert is. It sounds like bullshit from some huckster cookbook. Maybe with a shit-ton of sweet potatos and agave or something. I guess a limited amount of fruit is OK, but the rest is nonsense. I use Manhattans as my paleo dessert but I don't pretend that they're paleo.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 2:37 PM
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cake, the queen of desserts

Risible on its face.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 3:04 PM
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106: Maybe I just don't understand paleo, but I thought dessert at all was outside the realm of possibility. Honey? Combined with nuts somehow?

Pasteli!

Halva maybe?


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 3:07 PM
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97: Oh, god. And it probably works, too, so the time will come when I'm sick and I really have no excuse not to stick someone else's poop up my butt.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 3:14 PM
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Starburst jelly beans are the best dessert.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 3:24 PM
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133: they are really good.

Huh, the president was at the 5-gon today? I saw an unusual number of protective service folks, but didn't think they were usss


Posted by: President Scroob | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 3:33 PM
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Starburst jelly beans are the best dessert.

No way, man. They're kind of mealy.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 3:46 PM
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Applesauce or sweet potato can be used to reasonable effect in place of egg. You lose fluffiness, fer sure.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 3:51 PM
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134. That's what I figured based on an org-wide email yesterday that referenced the USSS and an entrance restriction. The email was very unusual. I have never seen such a heads up.


Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 4:59 PM
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135: Your grocery is cutting them with generic to increase the profit.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 5:18 PM
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After having fiour months or so in the clear, my sugar intolerance is back with a vengeance. Near the end last time, I was learning to abstain, but now I'm back to gorge-and-feel-awful.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 6:35 PM
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You could distract yourself by watching the end of the Crossfit Games.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 6:44 PM
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One complaint: the remaining cracklins were wholly untoothsome. Perhaps they needed more time, but I didn't want dark lard. Did I do something wrong?

I rendered a couple of pounds of lard two weekends ago (127: leaf lard, in fact!), and the cracklins also did not get very, well, crackly. It really seemed like the lard had cooked down as much as it was going to: the leftover bits hadn't gotten any more liquid in quite some time. In looking around the internet for instructions about the rendering, I found a few recommendations to put the cracklins in the oven or even the broiler for a bit.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 6:55 PM
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133: THEY ARE THE BEST. Thanks for reminding me they exist, I think I'll go get some.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 6:58 PM
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So I'm joining the 21st century and just ordered 2 iPhones. UPS tracking is weirdly compelling. I watched them go from the Foxconn plant at Zhengzhou Technology Park out to the Zhengzhou airport, hop a 755-mile flight to Incheon Korea, 3800 miles to Anchorage, and then 3100 miles to Louisville, where they left around 3 this afternoon for the 550-mile drive from the Louisville airport to my office in Chapel Hill tomorrow afternoon. Free shipping.

But it cost $8 to get the two plastic cases mailed here from Plano.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 7:01 PM
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Great, now I'm one step closer to being the only one here without a smartphone. Off to drown my sorrows in loading the dishwasher!


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 7:04 PM
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141: I used the oven to render them in the first place, and the dish was not broiler safe. But maybe I could have tossed them back in and cranked the heat for a few minutes.

Or maybe they just need salt. But, as a measure, my dog didn't bother eating the piece I gave him until later, when he determined that no other treats were forthcoming. He can be picky, but still.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 7:12 PM
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ordered 2 iPhones

Gangsta.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 7:34 PM
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If you're using them as burners I hear they're easy to fold in half when you want to destroy them.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 7:36 PM
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One of the PIs in my lab tried to bend my phone to test that. Hey! That's my phone! Lucky it's bullshit.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 7:43 PM
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Not so, Thorn!


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 7:46 PM
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Unless you are saying that Apostropher is lying about ordering iPhones, it sort of by definition is so. (I looked it up on my phone.)


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 7:49 PM
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I meant what 150 says, but the sanctity of off-smartphone communication had already let me know that I'm not alone.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 10- 8-14 7:51 PM
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UPS tracking is weirdly compelling.

My dad quite frequently posts tracking info on FB. And they live in the arse end of nowhere so he does A LOT of internet shopping.


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 10- 9-14 2:57 AM
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143. Flight tracking is similarly obsession-inducing, at least for me. If UPS did flight maps to go with their updates (showing the plane going from Alaska to Louisville, for example) I'd have that tab open all the time.


Posted by: DaveLMA | Link to this comment | 10- 9-14 5:13 AM
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The part of paleo where they try to come up with fake deserts is pretty sad. Don't eat desserts or eat fruit.


Posted by: lemmy caution | Link to this comment | 10- 9-14 8:02 AM
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The part of paleo where they try to come up with fake deserts

"The Schmahara."


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10- 9-14 8:15 AM
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153: http://flightaware.com/live/fleet/UPS


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 9-14 8:21 AM
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Also in the no smartphone club! My pay-as-you-go T-Mobile plan on circa 2004 Nokia phone still works great for me!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 10- 9-14 8:25 AM
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156. Awesome!


Posted by: DaveLMA | Link to this comment | 10- 9-14 9:24 AM
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YAY I HAZ IPHONEZ


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 9-14 2:13 PM
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Welp, I guess the flickr group is officially NSFW now.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 10- 9-14 2:19 PM
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First UPS tracking, next "Guys, this thing has a web browser!" and who knows what else.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 10- 9-14 2:23 PM
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160: just check it on your phone.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 9-14 2:28 PM
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Here's the kicker. Roberta and the kids flew to Nashville this morning to visit her sister and their cousins. But the old school flip phones these will replace are in her name (and one, of course, is with her in Nashville) so I have to wait until Monday before I can transfer the carrier stuff and actually use it as a phone. I can still turn it on and play with it on the wifi network, right?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 9-14 4:24 PM
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Yep. Go nuts with downloading apps, too. I love my smartphone so much more than I thought I would.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 9-14 5:15 PM
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The local decadent baker said that she can make a gluten-free chocolate chip cookie that tastes just as good as her original one. She is working on a vegan one which will be scrumptious, but--without the butter and eggs (most especially the butter)--it won't ever be as good.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10- 9-14 5:49 PM
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To bring this thread full circle to blenders. I saw a vitamin demo where they blended avocado, ice and agave to make a kind if ice cream-like dessert. It actually tasted pretty good.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10- 9-14 5:53 PM
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I think I see someone I know IRL in one of the Flickr pool photos, posted by someone whose username I don't recognize. Odd! But I guess if there was a time for me to more circumspect in my blog commenting it was years ago.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 10- 9-14 6:31 PM
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OT: I just killed my first Enderman. Hooray enchanted sword.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 9-14 6:59 PM
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Also, teleporting isn't a huge help in the bottom of a trench.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 9-14 7:16 PM
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You guys are only just getting smartphones? My old phone caved in in about 2010 and I literally couldn't get a replacement that wasn't a smartphone. And I tried, due to technofear.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-10-14 2:22 AM
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I managed to get a dumbphone in 2010 by simply walking into a shop and saying, "I want a phone that does calls and texts and costs next to nothing", and refusing to leave until they gave me one. You need to learn to be persistent.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-10-14 2:28 AM
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There is a special catalogue which comes with the newspapers every so often here which is mostly stuff for old people and a few weird gadgets (long handled this, stretchy and/or velcro that) and they have special phones with big number keys which appear to be dumbphones.

There was a brief mini-trend last year among some young people for old Nokias and the like, leading to a second hand market. Less so now although I think some people like to have them as an alternative phone for festivals etc.


Posted by: emir | Link to this comment | 10-10-14 2:37 AM
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The problem with the "special old person phone", an idea that reliably gets brought up and passed around the mobile industry every six months, is that...iPhones are pretty great, and it's not actually difficult or scary* to make calls on them. In fact, what are they best known for?

Back in the 90s, Age Concern ran a billboard campaign with a picture of an old person and SILLY OLD MOO in huge Futura Extra Bold Condensed text, then some message about the evils of stigmatising the old. These phones are basically a product with that sign stuck on it, something whose unique selling point is basically stigma itself.

(Further, however big you make a hardware dialpad, the buttons will be smaller than they can be on a touchscreen that literally takes up the device's entire surface.)

*scary. what are you scared of? jesus.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 10-10-14 2:51 AM
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scary. what are you scared of? jesus.

Temptation. Restricting my data to a computer makes it near enough free.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-10-14 3:01 AM
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You guys are only just getting smartphones?

Aside from a burner that I carried for one meatup weekend and then let perish, I never had a cellular phone of any type until my wife sandbagged me with an ancient flip phone this past summer. But I've mostly just left it sitting at home every day because if I have to carry a phone, I at least want something I can use to read Unfogged while I'm in the bathroom.

Sigh. It was a great two decades of first-rate curmudgeonry.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10-10-14 12:30 PM
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"meatup". Nice.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 10-10-14 12:34 PM
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But alas it is not a new coinage.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 10-10-14 12:39 PM
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what are you scared of?

Usually the fear is that an unfamiliar interface will share something you'd rather not have shared. Not crazy, actually. There's apparently a large cache of snapchat photos recently stolen and disseminated, guess they don't disappear.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 10-10-14 12:40 PM
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