Re: Ballghazi

1

Pacing, brah.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 01-23-15 10:41 PM
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Note the backdrop promoting the Gillette Flexball razor.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 01-23-15 10:48 PM
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Gillette Flexball

"Fuck it, we're going with six balls."


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-23-15 10:55 PM
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The only don't fumble much if you assume a grip being used by running backs that's similar to a quarterback throwing a ball.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 01-23-15 11:21 PM
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It looks like the Twitterer linked in the OP has a sense of humor that would fit in well at Unfogged. Do you think she might start commenting here once she turns 18?


Posted by: Todd | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 3:41 AM
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Based on the assumption that fumbles per play follow a normal distribution, you'd expect to see, according to random fluctuation, the results that the Patriots have gotten over this period, once in 16,233.77 instances
The person saying this is supposedly a data scientist? That's a pretty stupid assumption.
Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 5:17 AM
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You know what? I don't even care about the patriots; that post is an insult to the whole concept of statistical analysis.

The tweet's good, though. Balls! Good quantitative analysis.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 6:06 AM
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That analysis convinced me that Tom Brady must be really good.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 6:09 AM
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The entire kerfuffle is an insult to analysis, full stop. Yes, he's a total homer, but Charlie Pierce got it right.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 6:10 AM
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Meanwhile, I can't even masturbate to Ernie Banks anymore.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 6:16 AM
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Plus Brady mentioned ISIS in his press conference. So he's obviously a serious, well-informed man.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 6:17 AM
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The Internet always did love a good balls meme.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 6:19 AM
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If he were really serious and well informed he would have gone with ISIL.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 6:21 AM
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12: Yes, it did.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 6:24 AM
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I bet if he did an analysis of point differential the best teams would be way above where they would statistically be due to random chance, so they were probably all cheaters and their super bowl wins should be vacated. Apparently doing things that help you win games makes you more likely to win!


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 6:28 AM
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I think you guys are missing the forest for the trees here. You don't have to assume a normal distribution to see they're a wackadoodle outlier.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 6:38 AM
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Right. Winning a conference championship by almost 40 points is another good sign.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 6:44 AM
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16: that's not the issue. Please don't believe that post, ogged. Believe the patriots are big cheaty cheaters if you want, but that post is just lying with statistics.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 6:55 AM
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The bullshit 1 in 16000 or whatever, which is what's supposed to be so shocking, is based on the normal distribution assumption.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 7:00 AM
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What would Teen Wolf say? Have I mentioned that I'm friends with Jimmy Kimmel, as though that is something to be proud of? Lena Dunham is on my podcast! I'll ask for her Karate Kid 4 pitch!


Posted by: OPINIONATED BILL SIMMONS | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 7:02 AM
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Also the absolute number of fumbles is not an enormous outlier. Sifu is right, lying with stats to make an outlier that can be explained by skill chance whatever appear to be so shocking it must be teh ballz.
PS I am a Giants fan.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 7:03 AM
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Well, yeah. It's just that there are many, many other shady moves in that post.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 7:05 AM
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22 to 19.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 7:06 AM
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You don't have to assume a normal distribution to see they're a wackadoodle outlier.

If the scale on that graph started at 0, rather than at 70, the outlierlyness would appear to be a lot less wackadoodle.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 7:07 AM
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It's the same kind of shit they do in broadcasts all the time; "Tony Romo is only the third quarterback to have thrown three picks in a quarter in games played outdoors in under 55 degree weather in the past year and a month!"


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 7:07 AM
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The move from saying that fumbles/play follows a normal distribution to showing a plot of plays/fumble and observing it isn't bell-shaped is pretty cute. What's a reciprocal between friends?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 7:10 AM
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It depends on who prefers to be on top.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 7:13 AM
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Of course, "17% fewer fumbles than the next best team" doesn't sound as scary as "1 in 160000".


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 7:14 AM
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How snowy is the Boston area right now, by the way? I'm supposed to fly back in a few hours.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 7:15 AM
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A few inches of heavy snow, nothing awful, slowing down already. I drove to kids hockey no problem.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 7:19 AM
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I missed the update before. So now the patriots aren't even top in fumbles per game, only top among outdoor teams. WHAT ARE THE CHANCES!!!! I like how he keeps saying this can't be explained by random fluctuation. I guess playing in the NFL is like playing the slots, why do people even care about strategy or draft picks?


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 7:21 AM
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Fumbles/game should say plays/all fumbles


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 7:24 AM
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The link in the OP is the first thing I've read anywhere that suggests that the Patriots might have been playing with deliberately underinflated balls, not only in the playoff game against the Colts, or possibly maybe also in the playoff game against the Ravens (there have been whispers), but in all games played over the last eight years. (At least I think that is the conclusion he seems to be pointing to with his analysis.)

If there's anything at all to that, it goes from something of a joke to a legitimate scandal. And it makes doubly-silly all of the (already silly) comments about how the Patriots would have beaten the Colts with any balls so who cares if they were underinflated.


Posted by: urple | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 7:59 AM
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Tell me, mathies, is this wrong: the Pats fumble way less than other teams, and that's very unusual for an outdoor, cold-weather team.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 8:02 AM
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Depends on your definition of very unusual. But if you take whatever team had the best record over a given period you'll find that on some metric they're way better than you'd expect by chance. Especially when you start slicing it by smaller time periods, indoor vs outdoor, etc.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 8:05 AM
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Yes. You have to show that there is a difference and that it isn't spurious.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 8:16 AM
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35: They're, by far, the best performing football team in a state settled by Puritans. I'd be suspicious.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 8:20 AM
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I don't know where I would get the information to answer 34. It certainly is not in the linked post. Or what Moby said.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 8:21 AM
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If there is a negative correlation between fumbles and joiners of plays (because a fumble means fewer downs and because both relate to not being good), adjusting by plays inflates your significance.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 8:29 AM
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Joiners sb numbers.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 8:30 AM
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Following on 33, I guess there's no reason to think they have been using underinflated balls in every game for eight years. Probably just in games that are expected to be played in bad, wet weather (like e.g. the Colts game), where the risk of fumbles is especially significant.


Posted by: urple | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 8:37 AM
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The patriot defenders in this thread need to adjust their Bayesian priors. We aren't looking at the fumble statistics and trying to figure out whether they show convincing evidence that the patriots may be deflating footballs. We KNOW the Patriots have been intentionally deflating footballs. At least once, against the Colts. It seems unlikely that this was the first game in which they've pulled that trick. The fumble statistics are helping us get a sense of how long they've been pulling this trick.

Those who think the statistics are just noise reflecting the fact that the pats are a very good team across the board--why did they suddenly start getting so much better on this particular metric in 2007? Their teams were also very good before that.


Posted by: urple | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 8:45 AM
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Forget the skewed graphs and "normal distribution" stuff (which btw I don't think is such a crazy assumption) and everything else about the post.

"The Patriots ratio of 187 plays to 1 fumble is the BEST of ANY team in the NFL for ANY 5 year span of time over the last 25 years. Not was it just the best, it wasn't close:

2010-2014 Patriots: 187 plays/fumble
2009-2013 Patriots: 156 plays/fumble
2006-2010 Colts: 156 plays/fumble
..."

Yes if we had seen this three weeks ago it wouldn't give us any special reason to think the Pats cheated, but like urple says *given that we know they cheated at least once* it's quite good evidence they've cheated a similar way in the past.


Posted by: torque | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 9:17 AM
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You can't argue both that they were outliers for 25 years and that 2007 marks a particular change. Or you can, but you really set a high bar for yourself.

Either way, you beg the question "Did nobody else touch one of the Pat's balls for 25 or 8 years?"


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 9:35 AM
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I'm not arguing they didn't cheat. I'm not arguing that a statistical analysis can't provide evidence they cheated. I'm doubting a particular analysis.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 9:38 AM
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Are Tom Brady's deflated footballs even that much of a scandal?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 9:44 AM
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That article isn't helpful. It's legal to scuff the ball, as long as the ref approves the ball before the game. It's not legal to underinflate the ball. (It sounds like the refs really (wait for it) dropped the ball here, too.)


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 10:07 AM
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46: The Guardian is enjoying itself a little too much there:

Eli Manning, a man who twice beat the Patriots in Super Bowls and performs almost without discernible emotion in Toyota ads, has his balls "rubbed vigorously for 45 minutes with a dark brush," scoured with a wet towel and spun on an electric wheel, the New York Times revealed in a 2013 story.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 10:11 AM
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42. We KNOW the Patriots have been intentionally deflating footballs.

No we don't. We know some footballs were found to be lower PSI than called for, but we don't know how they got that way or who did it or if it was done intentionally or with intent to go below the 12.5 PSI lower bound.

There's also the unrelated (to Ballghazi) question of whether the rule actually has a useful purpose. Teams apparently provide their own balls. Why shouldn't they be allowed to have them at any PSI they choose? (That's Pierce's point, for those who didn't follow the link.) The NFL fine for them being outside the range is less than for "adjusting your crotch."


Posted by: DaveLMA | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 10:17 AM
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Moby I don't think you're reading that 25 year bit correctly. They looked at every 5yr stretch by every team over 25 years. The late model Pats are super good in that set. Not sure about the earlier model Pats.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 10:20 AM
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The fumble statistics are helping us get a sense of how long they've been pulling this trick.
When the "scandal" initially broke, it was all about how Brady liked a certain feel to his balls, how soft balls were easier to throw and catch. Now suddenly it's changed to fumbles that are the proof. Again, I don't care about the Patriots, but this ex post reasoning and searching for statistical significance in some filtered stats then rationalizing for why your cause of choice explains said stat is exactly the kind of shit that gets (or should get) people canned from science jobs.
You could argue that almost any offensive stat (aside from kicking, separate balls) and possibly some defensive ones too if they have an offensive component (e.g. turnover +/-) could be related to inflation of the balls. That a team that's won their conference more often than not over the past decade ends up as an outlier in some stat does not prove that a) they consistently underinflated balls or b) even if they did that the chosen stat is related.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 10:25 AM
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exactly the kind of shit that gets (or should get) people canned from promoted in science jobs


Posted by: Kreskin | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 10:29 AM
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I don't think the fumble statistic is bad at all. Why wouldn't offensive plays per fumble be a useful lens to look through?

SP and Tweety seem to feel really intensely about it, but I don't get it. Sure--it is just one, and I'd like to see more.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 10:34 AM
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Fumbles per play is much much more natural. The key question is "what are the odds that a time fumbles on a given play" which is measured in fumbles per play not plays per fumble.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 10:36 AM
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You don't see this kind of inverse calculation often. Batting average isn't measured in at-bats per hit, field goal percentage isn't measured in shots per make, etc.

The one case where you do see this backward statistic is miles per gallon (should be gallons per mile!) and it causes big problems there in that it makes real gas guzzlers not look so bad. The difference between a 10mpg car and a 20mpg car is not the same as 20mpg and 30mpg, instead it's the same going from a 20mpg car to one that magically runs on fairy dust. (A 10mpg vehicle takes 10 gallons to go 100 miles, a 20mpg vehicle takes 5 gallons to go 100 miles, so you'd need to use 0 gallons to go 100 miles to get the same improvement.)


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 10:40 AM
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Meh.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 10:40 AM
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SP and Tweety seem to feel really intensely about it

This is one of my favorite moves in online rhetoric. Surely it has a name. If not, it needs one.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 10:45 AM
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You all seem really upset.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 10:45 AM
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One reason one might not like fumbles/play in an article is that the numbers are small and hard to get a handle on. But the solution to that is to measure things per 100 or 1000 plays (which you see all the time in Basketball stats (per 100 possessions) or medical stats (per 1000 people))..


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 10:50 AM
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Oh, it's obviously called the "U mad bro?"


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 10:53 AM
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Certainly I see what you mean about looking at the rate that way stretching the apparent difference.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 10:56 AM
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I just ran the numbers using fumbles per 1000 plays just for last year's data. The Patriots still look like an outlier, but it's not as extreme. It's hard to tell from one year's data whether this is really normally distributed, but the Patriots (at 5.34 fumbles per 1000 plays) are 2.6 standard deviations away from the mean (9.76 fumbles per 1000 plays), while the most fumble prone team is 2 standard deviations away from the mean (13.16 fumbles per 1000 plays). That's still surprising, but naively you'd expect that something like that by chance one in every 200 times.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 11:01 AM
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The main problem with the way the data is presented in the article is that it magnifies outliers on one side of the data and shrinks them on the other. So it's not just that the Patriots look like more of an outlier, the fumble-prone outliers have entirely gone away. Philly fumbles a lot!


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 11:04 AM
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Not really convinced. You would have to examine every NFL stat and see what kind of variance you get on every one to judge how unusual it is that a team is so way ahead of the others in a particular area (my guess is that NFL teams employ guys to do exactly that and it would have been noticed if it were that improbable).
It's not that rare to see extreme outliers, and no, the finding of the underinflated balls doesn't really says much about the statistical issue. Lots of referees saw their balls after games all these years and found them allright. And we have no idea how much of a difference it makes, anyway.


Posted by: Charrua | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 11:04 AM
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It would be hilarious if this was all the result of a faulty pressure gauge on gameday.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 11:13 AM
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Damn it, fa, I was just about to make almost exactly that comment before refreshing the page. Which makes me wonder if it occurred to anyone to doctor a gauge just to put the whole ridiculous thing to rest.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 11:18 AM
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57 et seq. Fair enough. I agree that whoever shat out the bizarre 1:16000 chance or whatever should be mocked. But I'm mystified why all the condemnation of looking at plays per fumble or its reciprocal--either makes sense to me. The analysis, such as it is, *is* incomplete--but the first step is always incomplete, so why condemn it so vociferously?


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 11:37 AM
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In order to evaluate whether an outlier is the kind of thing you'd expect to see by chance or an actual anomaly, you need to have some idea of what distribution you'd expect the data to have. It's somewhat plausible that fumbles/play follows something close to a normal distribution, which means you can start doing things like counting standard distributions and get some idea of whether it's a crazy outlier or an expected outlier. (It can't literally be a normal curve because there's going to be a cutoff point at 0 that you can't go below, but it could be close enough for government work.) By contrast, plays/fumble is just not the kind of variable that could be anywhere close to a normal distribution. So easy Stats 101 is totally useless and you have no idea whether the outlier is surprising or not.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 11:54 AM
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There could very well still be something going on here, and it'd be great to see someone who has some clue of how statistics work (which to be clear wouldn't really include me) write an article about this data. But this article is just sloppy.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 11:55 AM
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It's probably silly for me to try to explain this here, but anyhow.

Here's one way to think about it: that first graph was "fumbles lost per play over a five year window". It's pretty well known in the football stats world that fumble recovery percentage is random (e.g. see here, scroll down). It therefore follows that if you looked at "fumbles recovered per play over a five year window" you should see the same pattern, right? Yet, in the dude's update, when he looks at "all fumbles per play over a five year window", the patriots are no longer an outlier. That means that if you look at "fumbles recovered per play over a five year window" -- which, remember, our prior knowledge about fumble recovery tells us should be basically the same -- not only are the pats not an outlier, they're somewhere well in the middle of the pack. Otherwise, the mean of "fumbles lost per play over a five year window" and "fumbles recovered per play over a five year window" (which is what "all fumbles per play over a five year window" is) would not be so much lower than "fumbles lost per play over a five year window". Why should this be? There are lots of other reasons not to trust that analysis (why a five year window? Why completely exclude teams that play their home games indoors when all teams play some games indoors and some outdoors? Why not just look at bad weather games? Why set the graph axes like that? What about statistical signficance? Why assume normality? Why do you need a "data scientist" to make up some bullshit odds for you?) but that's I think a relatively clear one.

For more on the general topic (since, really, let's not let this be the "how many days are there in a week" thread of unfogged) an xkcd and a paper by some statisticians.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 12:02 PM
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50: I did misunderstand that. But I think my broader points remain.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 12:20 PM
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A ref handles the ball before every play and over the course of a game will handle the other sides balls and the kicking balls repeatedly. An opponent handles the ball on every interception and fumble. Every bounce of every missed pass is filmed.

I'm not ready to believe in a years long conspiracy of underinflation.

I am willing to believe that a small number of elite athletes could develop ball handling skills that would show up in fumble stats.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 12:24 PM
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It therefore follows that if you looked at "fumbles recovered per play over a five year window" you should see the same pattern, right?

Wait. You can only lose fumbles when you have the ball, but you can recover when either team has the ball. Or have I misunderstood how they keep that stat?


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 12:25 PM
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Why assume normality?

It is count data. You'd think poisson or something would be the first choice.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 12:26 PM
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73: I assume that the "fumbles" he is using in the second, updated part of the post refers to "fumbles by the team running plays" because otherwise "offensive plays by team X per fumble" makes no sense; what do fumbles when the defense (and other team's offense, and other team's footballs) is on the field have to do with anything?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 12:32 PM
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You'd think poisson or something would be the first choice.

Sounds fishy to me.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 12:33 PM
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74: Yeah. but it's count data with a floor in the several dozens. Not a lot of worries there.

Sifu, thanks for the response. There are totally 8 days in this week, so... I read the OPs link before the update--I totally thought it was ALL fumbles. So, certainly that clears a lot of the interestingness right out of the Pats relative performance.

As for the rest of the questions: incomplete analysis is incomplete. I don't really have a problem with the 5 yr window b/c aggregating it to that point gets you dozens of net fumbles, so you aren't totally pantsdown on a small variable quantity. I also don't see a problem having a question about that window!

Ideally all bloggers would show us details of their parameter selection... but... quickie bloggers gonna blog.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 12:35 PM
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But by pointing out that huge miss (fumbles lost vs all fumbles) you've done me a great service, Sifu. Thanks.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 12:37 PM
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75: you're right.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 12:38 PM
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77: I think you'd do it by game, with a dummy for each team. You could control for weather/indoorness/etc. that way.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 12:39 PM
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80: certainly.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 12:43 PM
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Right, but that would get you a floor of zero.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 12:46 PM
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Speaking of "coughing it up," my 7 y.o. was spraying spaghetti hourly from about 9pm last night until 9am today. So very tired. So much laundry to finish today.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 1:25 PM
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The linked analysis is terrible, but the WSJ did a writeup that took out most of the weaknesses and also noted that Patriots who had also played for other teams recently were much less likely to fumble in a Pats uniform. My quibble with the WSJ writeup is that it excludes dome teams (when it makes much more sense to exclude on gam conditions).


Posted by: Disingenuous Bastard | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 1:27 PM
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We usually just put the sauce on the spaghetti with a spoon.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 1:28 PM
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The patriots fumbled twice in the game against the ravens. Unless deflated balls make it easier to recover your own fumbles, I don't see this as a thing.


Posted by: Lemmy caution | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 1:40 PM
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I'm mad that ogged has forced me into a position in which I am defending sports fans from MA.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 1:47 PM
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and also noted that Patriots who had also played for other teams recently were much less likely to fumble in a Pats uniform.

That was the analysis I thought of. Some potential confounding variables there, of course.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 1:48 PM
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I will defend sports fans from MA generally, Red Sox fans especially, and most of all anyone who can help me get tickets to the August 31 Sox-Yankees game at Fenway for less than a hundred bucks a pop for bleacher seats.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 1:57 PM
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Now suddenly it's changed to fumbles that are the proof.

This would be a great argument if it weren't, you know, wrong. This isn't a sudden change.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 5:04 PM
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No offense, Lemmy, but 86 is a pretty ridiculous bit of analysis. "Barry Bonds struck out twice in a game once" doesn't mean he wasn't a very, very good hitter. If the original analysis held value - and it may not! - the number of fumbles in one specific game is, literally, meaningless.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 5:22 PM
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Suppose the stats analysis were right. Why would it show that the Pats cheat rather than the Pats prefer their balls to be inflated to just to the lowest end of the legal limit?


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 5:40 PM
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It wouldn't show conclusively, of course, but if (if!) the pats are a statistical outlier and not just by a little bit, and the other 31 teams aren't staffed by morons, we'd begin to suspect something. It would be interesting to investigate the psi-to-fumble-ability graph, by which I mean it would be interesting if someone else were to do it and report back. Where's the tipping point?


Posted by: FL | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 6:32 PM
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You aren't supposed to tip statisticians.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 6:40 PM
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You aren't supposed to tip statisticians.

They have a tilt alarm.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 7:32 PM
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96

93: Right, but it's also plausible that other QBs have different preferences regarding optimal inflation, maybe preferring a higher chance of fumbles to the loss of airspeed or whatever. I'm assuming there's a tradeoff.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 7:40 PM
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97

It could be. But the range of allowable PSI is pretty small (12.5-13.5) and the tested balls were short by 2 psi. God knows how low these monsters went on other occasions. The statistical stuff (arguendo!) suggests the patriots as outliers as a team and that there are changes in performance when players become/stop being patriots. First, it just seems more likely that the point of affecting performance in this measurable way is somewhere in that broad


Posted by: FL | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 9:49 PM
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98

How odd! the part that disappeared was completely convincing and said something like

...range below 12.5 rather than between 12.5-13.5. Second if the patriots are anomalous it suggests they're consistently doing something different, and no pressure in the narrow legal range is going to be unusual in games given natural variation and inaccuracy. It might be they aim for 12.5 exactly and just missed in a big way on this one occasion, but it seems less probable.


Posted by: FL | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 9:53 PM
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99

I just can't believe there's a league where you supply your own footballs but only for when you're attacking. It's asking for this to happen - surely the rule should just be that you play with the same pool of balls all the way through?


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 10:33 PM
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100

I just can't believe there's a league where you supply your own footballs but only for when you're attacking

It's like you've never even heard of the American way.


Posted by: Just Plain Jane | Link to this comment | 01-24-15 11:36 PM
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101

There should be third-party, lightly-regulated private agencies to rate balls. "Those balls were rated AAA! Who could have predicted they'd get underinflated?"


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 12:13 AM
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102

But only two or three of them. Wouldn't want too much competition to destabilize the market.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 12:14 AM
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103

99: Yep. Since 2006. Here are articles from the NYT and WaPo from the season after they made the change that discuss it.

From the one:
Carr, like several other quarterbacks, said Denver was one of the toughest places to play. He said he thought the ball expanded slightly at the altitude and felt slick because of the lower humidity. Before Houston's preseason game at Denver, Carr instructed the ball boys to let a little air out of the Texans' footballs.

I think the results of that preseason game should be reversed. (I forgot to mock ogged for the "forfeit" remark in the last post. )


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 6:06 AM
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104

Talk of "equilibrium states" and pressure-temperature relationships in a football press conference? I guess Mart/in had the right idea trying to turn this into a science outreach opportunity.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 6:59 AM
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105

mock ogged for the "forfeit" remark

I have a crazy belief that if you cheat, you should lose. I know, I know, creeping Sharia.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 7:29 AM
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106

Cheating only exists relative to the established rules, though, and the rules already provide for a penalty.


Posted by: Nathan Williams | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 7:49 AM
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107

u mad bro?


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 7:52 AM
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108

the rules already provide for a penalty

This is correct, and so I defer to the commissioner in his infinite wisdom. The established penalty can, however, include a forfeit.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 8:03 AM
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109

u mad bro?

Every minute.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 8:03 AM
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110

105: What led to you to embrace a position of such utter imbecility in pursuit of selectively misperceived justice?

The U of C? Guilt over the caterpillar?

Maybe there's a twelve-step detox program.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 8:04 AM
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111

My dear apologist, perhaps you can explain your position, so that I might more appropriately respond.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 8:11 AM
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112

How many times has the commissioner done a post-hoc forfeiture.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 8:15 AM
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113

Guys, guys. The matter is settled!


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 8:15 AM
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114

How many times has the commissioner done a post-hoc forfeiture.

No idea, but I would guess never, and think there was zero chance of it happening here. But someone has to be a moral exemplar, and I try to bear my burden with grace.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 8:28 AM
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115

And you're doing it well.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 8:29 AM
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116

108: Actually a reversal of the results.

The Commissioner has the sole authority to investigate and take appropriate disciplinary and/or corrective
measures if any club action, non-participant interference, or calamity occurs in an NFL game which he deems so
extraordinarily unfair or outside the accepted tactics encountered in professional football that such action has a major
effect on the result of the game.

111. So my position--you Khmer Rouge wannabe--is that wanting to characterize this as "so extraordinarily unfair or outside the accepted tactics encountered in professional football that such action has a major effect on the result of the game"--which has never (112) before been invoked in the history of the league reveals a critical flaw in the moral reasoning apparatus of the person or entity holding such a position.

Here's a discussion of the related "palpably unfair act*" (happens on the field) and other unfair situations in pro and college football.

*From the post: (Note: to my knowledge, there has never been a ruling of a palpably unfair act in the NFL. The NCAA rules are similar enough that college games are included below.)


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 8:31 AM
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117

113: Fuck. That does seal it.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 8:32 AM
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118

Here is the data I saw (but only via a blog comment) on the fumble frequency of players who were on the PAtriots and other teams during the time period.

" Including recovered fumbles, Danny Amendola, BenJarvus Green-Ellis, Danny Woodhead, Wes Welker, Brandon LaFell and LeGarrette Blount have lost the ball eight times in 1,482 touches for the Patriots since 2010, or once every 185.3 times. For their other teams, they fumbled 22 times in 1,701 touches (once every 77.3)."

Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 8:55 AM
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119

These are the kind of incidents which do lead to the rules being changed or adjusted* ** but asking for some kind of super penalty is the mark of the unthinking or the morally unserious.

*See some of the instances in the blog post referenced in 116.

*As the catch rule should be (or actually should have been done after the Calvin Johnson catch in 2010). The inclusion of more precision on "going to ground" or "act of catching the ball" would probably suffice. Until something exposed the cracks in that.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 8:59 AM
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120

Kristol-lite, I think I speak for everyone when I congratulate someone of your advanced age for using the google to "support" your "point," but perhaps you could search "personal conduct policy" and not the narrower "palpably unfair act," and find the following:

All persons associated with the NFL are required to avoid "conduct detrimental to the integrity of and public confidence in the National Football League." This requirement applies to players, coaches, other team employees, owners, game officials and all others privileged to work in the National Football League.

In keeping with the penalties spelled out there, I'll settle for banishment of anyone involved in Ballghazi, and leave it up to the commissioner, in his wisdom, whether the game should be forfeit.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 9:04 AM
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121

Kill the franchise? Northeast is getting all depopulated anyway.

Does San Antonio have a NFL team? El Paso? I think Lubbock does. Fort Worth could handle one.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 9:08 AM
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122

120: Your crass and stupid ageism is always cute.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 9:11 AM
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123

||
The Onion still has its place. Unsold Google Glass Units To Be Donated To Assholes In Africa.
|>


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 9:22 AM
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124

You're in luck, because there's more where that came from. Sadly, I'm out the rest of the day, but I wish you at least one more day of life so that we might continue this dialogue.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 9:23 AM
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125

I was pretty sure this was a nothingburger drummed up to embarrass Belichick -- good job finding the only Patriots-cheating scandal I'm prepared to believe he knew nothing about, Colts; try teaching your guys how to behave during an onside kick* next time -- but that Kristol thing really is dispositive. I guess I can assume that not only did Belichick do it personally, he had a backup plan involving Curveball, yellowcake, and a ten-year occupation of Indianapolis. Hanging is too good for him.

* The thing about the "fumbles" vs. "fumbles lost" thing is that I absolutely believe that Belichick's players are better prepared to recover their own fumbles than the NFL at large; if Brandon Bostick had been a Patriot, he would have suffered some sort of Game of Thrones punishment, possibly involving being sewn inside a silk bag with angry bees, and would never be seen or even mentioned again.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 9:28 AM
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126

125 was me.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 9:28 AM
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127

Yes, I'm off as well. Might be the day I die on the racquetball court. We can only hope.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 9:29 AM
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128

Remember to wear the goggles.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 9:33 AM
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129

||

This line in a recommendation letter for a student is cracking me up:

"He has not exh/ibited any neg/ative pe/rsona/lity tra/its throughout my inter/actions with him, des/pite his high intelli/gence."

|>


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 9:47 AM
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130

Also a weird one: a letter testifying that the end of a class a student asked others "what are you guys doing for dinner?" I guess that's there so I know he has digestive organs and is not a robot.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 10:15 AM
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131

129-130: awesome


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 10:19 AM
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132

I believe we already had this debate about exploiting the rules vs cheating in the context of that biting asshole who oppressed the Africans with his handball.
The problem with ogged's position, of course, it's its pretty much the maximum penalty for a small time technicality. Might as well go all "sweep the leg" on every opposing QB. Unless he does have higher levels of punishment planned under his Sharia regime, like beheadings.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 10:38 AM
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133

|| Intimate encounter. Things are progressingsuccessfully. Your partner then apologizes and makes a quick trip to the bathroom. You remove your remaining clothing, expecting to soon proceed where things left off. Partner emerges from the bathroom, takes one look at you, and laughs.

How do you respond? |>


Posted by: Deflated Balls | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 11:31 AM
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134

The one time I read recommendation letters there was one saying a particular applicant's intellectual maturity exceeded their social/emotional maturity.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 11:36 AM
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135

Oh, here's another: "makes kil/ler meat/balls that still ma/ke my mouth wat/er thinking about th/em."


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 11:40 AM
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136

So wait hang on. The NFL explicitly changed the rules - on Tom Brady's bequest - to make this kind of ball tampering possible? Well really no sympathy. Should have seen that one coming.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 11:43 AM
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137

129,130,135: You get more entertaining recommendation letters than I do. Is it a theoretical physics thing?


Posted by: AcademicLurker | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 11:44 AM
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138

I mean I thought it was some kind of weird hangover from back in the 1930s when footballs were in short supply and if the quarterback threw them all out or something the league would lose money or whatever. Not a 2004 "how can we make Brady's life easier" rule change.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 11:45 AM
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139

137: I don't know. Breaks up the monotony of reading one right after the other but I think ultimately I'd rather have useful letters than quirky ones.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 11:46 AM
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140

133: "I know. Comically over-sized, but what can I do?"


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 11:47 AM
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141

Guys, the hell? At this moment, 133 is waiting naked in a room with someone laughing at him. TO THE MINESHAFTMOBILE!


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 11:47 AM
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142

133: Anger, hurt, and shame.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 11:47 AM
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143

Alternatively: shoot the hostage.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 11:48 AM
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144

More seriously, I'd just assume the laugh was of nerves or because they found you were a bit over-eager. Or because they remember the Friends episode where Joey takes off all his clothes when Monica went to get him some lemonade.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 11:52 AM
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145

Not a 2004 "how can we make Brady's life easier" rule change.

My understanding was that it was pretty widely a supported rule change by QB's across the league because they really do have varying preferences on that kind of thing. All the QB interviews I've seen confirmed that every QB in the league is doing minor things to the balls.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 11:59 AM
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146

133: Distract potential partner from the awkwardness of the situation by asking if they believe that the Patriots deliberately tampered with the ball and, if so, what the penalty should be.


Posted by: AcademicLurker | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 12:12 PM
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147

133: Have you considered devoting yourself to better ethics in video game journalism?


Posted by: Opinionated MRI | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 12:13 PM
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148

That was supported to be MRA.


Posted by: Opinionated MRI | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 12:14 PM
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149

133: Start planning for next time?


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 12:16 PM
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150

"My pants were chafing me."


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 12:20 PM
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151

I guess it's no weirder than letting people use their own bat, but the idea of varying, personally customised balls just seems so weird to me. Isn't the ball meant to be a concrete expression of the absolute and universal values of western civilisation, an eternal verity which is uniform and consistent across all places and times?

(Maybe that's just in football.)


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 12:24 PM
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152

"Can I get in your pants? I just pooped in mine."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 12:24 PM
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153

"Can I borrow some quarters for the laundry? I don't have anything on me."


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 12:26 PM
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154

Partner had already disrobed before heading to the toilet. I believe, in hindsight, the chuckle was a reflection of incompatible understandings regarding the completeness of the preceding course of events.

A life of celibacy sounds like a far less humiliating choice for the future.


Posted by: Deflated Balls | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 12:27 PM
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155

Obviously.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 12:28 PM
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156

154: The order of events is puzzling me. Traditionally, disrobing occurs near the beginning of lascivious activities and the end of said activities is indicated by getting dressed. It sounds like things happened in reverse.


Posted by: AcademicLurker | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 12:30 PM
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157

156 gets it right.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 12:32 PM
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158

It's hard on a face to be laughed in, as Charlie Brown said. Rule 34 implies CB saying something about hard-ons but I'm not looking.

saying something that appeals to their GGG while not whining is optimal, but what would work? Because of my childhood my queud-up lines were "kiss me, Hardy" & "Gentlemen, we have not yet begun to fight." The latter worked better.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 12:41 PM
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159

156: dejeuner sur l'herbe. (La?)


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 12:42 PM
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160

Because of my childhood my queud-up lines were "kiss me, Hardy" & "Gentlemen, we have not yet begun to fight."

Not "Gridley, you may fire when ready"?


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 12:43 PM
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161

159: Le.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 12:43 PM
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162

156: I am equally puzzled. Clearly, perceptions of beginning, middle, and end were flawed here.


Posted by: Deflated Ball | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 12:44 PM
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163

151: American football really is an outlier in the sense of the QB having this unique constant tactile interaction with the ball. In soccer everyone is expected to be interacting with the ball and it's through a shoe so the feel isn't going to be a big deal. In baseball the pitcher handles the ball more than the rest of the team but not in the same lopsided manner as in football, and I think the individual feel of the ball means less in baseball because it's small and easy to grip.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 12:44 PM
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164

In soccer everyone is expected to be interacting with the ball and it's through a shoe so the feel isn't going to be a big deal.

The second part isn't actually true. I've found that I can juggle *much* better with a top-of-the-line ball than I can with a cheapie $20 one.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 12:47 PM
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165

Why do you have shoes on your hands?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 12:52 PM
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166

160, 162: I'd appeal to Gridley if we seemed to differ on whether we'd begun.

"Nelson's bridge!" For threesomes.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 12:55 PM
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167

Pitchers have been manipulating baseballs since baseball was invented, practically. Lots of cheating in baseball history with spit, shampoo or other liquid substances hidden in gloves or caps, intentional scuffing, etc. I don't know who's in charge of the supply of baseballs at games, though. Plus umpires inspect regularly these days.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 1:01 PM
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168

Since 141 appears to be based in a misunderstanding, what ended up happening?


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 1:11 PM
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169

I got dressed. We both fidgeted with our phones for a few minutes. I went home where I could feel like an asshole in private. Well, in private and in the Mineshaft.


Posted by: Deflated Balls | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 1:24 PM
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170

Home team supplies the baseballs, all subject to inspection by the umpire. It is completely ridiculous that the NFL has 3 different sets of balls for a game -- kickers don't have preferences just like QBs?

The NCAA reverses results of games -- we won the Brawl in 2011 on just a retroactive ruling, having lost the game, and our pre-game no 1 national ranking, particularly ugly. Two Griz players were retroactively ruled ineligible for having received bail and free legal advice (for matters unrelated to football) from boosters.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 1:25 PM
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171

169: Oh my, you got dressed? Here I'd been thinking along Moby's lines in 144, that the laugh/chuckle was over your eagerness, and at the time I'd probably have glanced at my naked self and chuckled too before making a beckoning gesture.

But this sounds very different. What the hell was wrong? Partner was already nekkid, correct? So your worst sin was ... thinking that you could be nekkid too? I must be missing something.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 1:31 PM
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172

I went home where I could feel like an asshole in private.

I may be misunderstanding, but it doesn't sound as if you were the asshole there. I don't quite get it, but it sounds as if your partner perceived whatever the two of you were doing as a completed sexual encounter, and then laughed at you for thinking there was more to come? That sounds as if they were being a jerk. (Is partner's gender available information?)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 1:33 PM
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173

I guess 154 is saying that partner considered the proceedings concluded. I must say I wonder what sort of proceedings these were if Deflated was still clothed.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 1:33 PM
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174

I didn't feel comfortable being new kid after being laughed at/near.


Posted by: Deflated Balls | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 1:34 PM
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175

Deflated, someone in that situation was being awkward at best/ jerky at worse, and it wasn't you.


Posted by: Mme. Merle | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 1:37 PM
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176

173: Partially clothed at that stage. Which, yeah, is part of what led me to believe the stage of proceedings was middle rather than end.


Posted by: Deflated Balls | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 1:37 PM
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177

||

remotely on-topic:

Superman is weird.

|>


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 1:42 PM
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178

Is this a case of deflated, but blue, balls?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 1:45 PM
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179

Does that make, uh, taking my balls and going home sound juvenile?


Posted by: Deflated Balls | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 1:50 PM
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180

DB, I have to agree with 172, 175 that partner was generating the awkwardness, not you.

{clears throat} So are you going to see this person again? I'm guessing that this was a fairly new encounter, since communication was so out of sync.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 1:54 PM
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181

This seems intrusive, but that's what we do here -- did your partner get off? This seems like a totally different situation if they got theirs, went to the bathroom, and then came out, laughed at you, and left you hanging, or, on the other hand, if the two of you did whatever messing around you did, and your partner decided mid-event that they didn't want things to progress any further.

I mean, in either case, bad communication and it sounds like it's from them not you, but in the first case they're a real jerk, and in the latter case maybe just awkward a bit.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 2:09 PM
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182

180: I don't really expect to see this person again. Maybe I am being stupid, but the whole thing feels too emasculating.


Posted by: Deflated Balls | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 2:12 PM
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183

Cricket lets you spit on the ball. Also sweat.

But you can't scratch it, or use dirt to rough it up.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 2:14 PM
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184

181: I'm not entirely sure of the answer there.


Posted by: Deflated Balls | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 2:16 PM
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185

This is the most confusing sexual encounter ever.


Posted by: Tim "Ripper" Owens | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 2:23 PM
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186

182: If you don't know the person well, that sounds right, but based on what you've said I wouldn't feel bad about it at all.

If you know them reasonably well, and they're generally not an asshole, it's probably worth a "So, what happened last night? Suddenly, after you went to the bathroom, everything was awkward." I mean, possibly you need someone to mention that it was a turnoff when you asked if they'd wear a pickelhaube for you. Or something.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 2:24 PM
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187

The sexual encounter seems to have existed in some radically indeterminate state between clothed and not clothed, sex and not sex, bathroom and not bathroom, orgasm and not orgasm. initiation and completion. Maybe the laughter was actually just joy at watching the ordinary laws of classical mechanics collapse around you.


Posted by: Tim "Ripper" Owens | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 2:30 PM
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188

As with a lot of these stories, I find myself thinking that somewhere out there there has to be another Internet community with someone saying "I had the *weirdest* sexual encounter last night..."


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 2:30 PM
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189

187: Indeed. Schrodinger's fuck.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 2:31 PM
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190

I've found that I can juggle *much* better with a top-of-the-line ball than I can with a cheapie $20 one.

Sure, but the equivalent here would be how much difference you could feel between 12 new top of the line balls.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 2:34 PM
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191

Perhaps Deflated Balls is actually three basketballs stuffed into a union suit. That would explain everything.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 2:37 PM
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192

189 just made the entire bizarro encounter worth it.


Posted by: Deflated Balls | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 2:38 PM
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193

188: Goop.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 2:44 PM
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194

193: Better that than GORP.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 3:23 PM
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195

160: NUTS.


Posted by: OPINIONATED SEXY ANYTHONY MCAULIFFE | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 3:54 PM
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196

We could probably make sense of this if we had all the details, but I don't think I want all the details.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 4:14 PM
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197

I said what I thought the problem was. You don't bust out the pickelhaube until the third date, minimum.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 4:23 PM
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198

Deflated balls, did she point when she laughed?


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 4:31 PM
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199

I don't think I want all the details.

This from the man who looked up the hacked Hope Solo nudes.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 4:40 PM
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200

The Helpy-Chalk School of Self-Esteem never got off to a good start.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 4:40 PM
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201

looked up the hacked Hope Solo nudes

If I knew then what I know now...


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 4:50 PM
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202

Was that the extreme close-up butt-hole pictures?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 4:52 PM
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203

The very ones.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 4:55 PM
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186: DB: I certainly don't think you are under any obligation to contact this person again if you don't know them all that well, but I think it might be worth a check-in in any case, just to see if they are willing to talk with you about what happened. Worst case, you confirm that they are, in fact, a jerk. Better case: you both get to talk about how your expectations got off track, and can put this information to use in future encounters with other people. Best case: after some possibly embarrassing mutual revelations, you both decide that you'd like to try again in some way with better communication up front, and have a much better experience the second time around.


Posted by: Dave W. | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 4:56 PM
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I guess I'll have to stop saying I never learned anything useful here.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 4:58 PM
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Hypothesis: DB paid for one hour but his watch is slow.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 5:07 PM
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but his watch is slow.

IYKWIMAITYD


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 5:15 PM
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207: Me.

Ogged will be pleased to learn that Ray Lewis shares his concern for the integrity of the game.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 5:20 PM
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Seconding DaveW. But only if you feel like doing it.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 5:28 PM
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Like ogged, God's Linebacker answers to a higher power.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 5:28 PM
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Schrodinger's fuck.

Or maybe this is a time-reversal / causality problem? Schrodinger's problem was different:


His position at Oxford did not work out well; his unconventional domestic arrangements, sharing living quarters with two women[8] was not met with acceptance. In 1934, Schrödinger lectured at Princeton University; he was offered a permanent position there, but did not accept it. Again, his wish to set up house with his wife and his mistress may have created a problem.


Posted by: torrey pine | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 5:32 PM
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Schrodinger's Three-Body Problem.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 5:40 PM
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So what were the "preceding course of events"? This story really is lacking in detail.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in." (9) | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 5:41 PM
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Learning more things about footballs that I never really knew. Such as the white stripes college versus none in the pros. (One Super Bowl in the 70's had stripes.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 5:55 PM
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You have to pay royalties to use "Seven Nation Army."


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 6:01 PM
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Yikes, DB, yes, laughing was cruel, and even though I can imagine myself doing something like that (nervous laughter), I would have mustered an apology right away. Goodness knows it's terribly stressful to disrobe in front of someone new.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 6:57 PM
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Not that anyone on the bus cared about the stress.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 7:13 PM
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Actual conversation I had:

Person X: The first time I had sex, I actually laughed because the guy's penis was so small.

Me: Wait, wasn't your first time with Mutual Friend Y?

Person X: Umm...No, no, it was with...someone else...someone you don't know.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 7:35 PM
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218: I dated a poorly endowed fellow once upon a time. He was so terribly insecure about it that I'd never have forgiven myself for laughing. I feel like it's the sort of thing one should know, or at least suspect, in advance.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 7:45 PM
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I'm sorry, DB. Both the uncertainty about orgasms and the general uncertainty are familiar and tough. I have no advice, but you shouldn't want to be me anyway.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 7:50 PM
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Indeed. Schrodinger's fuck.

I would have gone with "Schrödinger's Pussy".


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 7:54 PM
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Heterosexist.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 8:06 PM
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221: You never know what's in the box without, um, probing it?


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 8:11 PM
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Lots of non-straight people like pussy, teo, though of course plenty both straight and non- don't.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 8:11 PM
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I think teo's probably fairly safe in assuming that DB's a guy, though.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 8:13 PM
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I was going to make the point in 225, and then thought that if we're looking for precision here, it's not impossible that DB is a trans woman, which would allow for the possibility of non-straight sex involving one person with balls and one person with a pussy, so knecht wasn't necessarily being heterosexist. But I would guess that teo's right and knecht was assuming straight sex.

Because if there's anything that's important in the broad genre of cock jokes, it's precision.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 8:17 PM
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Glad we got that all sorted out.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 8:21 PM
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There's a separate question I've thought about in terms of people who say "I'm about to come" when they are, because I don't have a wide enough sample size to generalize (laydeez!) but have generally thought it makes sense during fellatio if it's not clear what the response will be and makes sense for people who are generally chatty about/during sex and presumably for other reasons too. But is it a social norm I'm just missing for whatever personal reasons?


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 8:27 PM
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Well, if you don't announce your orgasms, it's going to handicap your sex partners' capacity to keep accurate records.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 8:43 PM
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I only wonder how they train the rats to report.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 8:49 PM
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It's a real problem. You get rats faking orgasms just to get the food pellet for reporting.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 8:50 PM
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The error reports for articles on the refractory period of rats are legendary.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 8:57 PM
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In the Victorian era, orgasms were announced by means of "calling out" cards.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 8:59 PM
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But is it a social norm I'm just missing for whatever personal reasons?

I wouldn't say it's a social norm, but if you want your partner not to stop doing what they're doing, or if you want to let them know to come with you, and probably some other reasons I'm not thinking of, it makes sense.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 9:14 PM
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Dry cleaning bills?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 9:18 PM
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234: I'd thought of the first after posting, but the second wouldn't have been as obvious to me even though in retrospect I know it can work that way. (And I mostly thought of this because it happened in a movie Lee was watching last night and I think was supposed to signal that the people having sex, although married, we're sort of strangers to each other. But maybe I was overreading)


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 9:19 PM
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Announcing orgasms is what the Yo app is for.


Posted by: Standpipe Bridgeplate | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 9:27 PM
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Announcing orgasms is what the Yo app is for.


Posted by: Standpipe Bridgeplate | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 9:27 PM
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Oy.


Posted by: Standpipe Bridgeplate | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 9:28 PM
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Rof.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 9:33 PM
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Si.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 9:34 PM
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Standpipe!


Posted by: evil alien mecha sheep | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 9:36 PM
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236: Sufficient extraversion means it isn't happening if it isn't discussed?


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 9:42 PM
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Could somebody explain 242 to me, in great detail.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 9:52 PM
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et seq.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 9:57 PM
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Thank you.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-25-15 10:08 PM
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196 is correct in all material respects. Thanks for the sympathetic ears, friends.


Posted by: Deflated Balls | Link to this comment | 01-26-15 10:31 AM
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It's not all that rare for a fellator/-trix not to want to swallow, especially in no-strings-attached circumstances, in which case advance warning isn't odd (and sometimes is requested).


Posted by: lambchop | Link to this comment | 01-26-15 2:42 PM
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Well, so much for that data analysis of Ballghazi.


Posted by: Disingenuous Bastard | Link to this comment | 01-27-15 12:24 PM
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Science.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-27-15 12:51 PM
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It is among the things I fucking love.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-27-15 12:52 PM
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So We're now at level #deflatedeflategate


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-27-15 1:10 PM
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Bob Woodward defends his legacy.

I suspect '-ghazi' will not last. Two syllables -- one too many. Too hard to spell. Also it is a scandal that has flopped so far. '-Gate' is simple, one syllable."

Says who? Says Bob Woodward, who along with Carl Bernstein did the reporting for The Washington Post that helped ignite the Watergate scandal more than 42 years ago


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 01-27-15 1:23 PM
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228: When you get to my age you say it so your partner will know you're not having a heart attack.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 01-27-15 1:55 PM
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254: As if you can't do both things at once.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 01-27-15 1:57 PM
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Tell me about it.


Posted by: Opinionated Félix Faure | Link to this comment | 01-27-15 2:01 PM
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To be clear, I'm a ghost of the former president of France, not a commenter using a presidential pseud to report his own experience.


Posted by: Opinionated Félix Faure | Link to this comment | 01-27-15 2:02 PM
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257: yeah, that was obvious. Commenters using presidential pseuds to report their own experiences are not "opinionated".


Posted by: urple | Link to this comment | 01-27-15 2:15 PM
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-ghazi is distinct from -gate -- to me it indicates a whiny nothingburger scandal, as in Gamerghazi.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 01-27-15 3:27 PM
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259: So we can rename some old scandals -- Travelghazi, Whitewaterghazi etc.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 01-27-15 3:30 PM
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259, 260: Ahem.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-27-15 11:28 PM
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My FB feed is full of Pats fans being hyper-defensive about how UNFAIR and STUPID the whole thing is. And I just can't stop thinking: if the Seahawks stood accused of breaking a rule, you'd be having a field day about it on this same social-media platform. So maybe calm the fuck down, and let the investigation happen.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 01-27-15 11:39 PM
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Great, now I'm wondering what the stats are on whether people who have sex-related heart attacks actually have orgasms too. I guess when it leads to death there'd be forensic evidence collected....


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 01-28-15 5:04 AM
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263:.Science! I don't know how they'd collect forensic evidence on laydeez, but I guess they interview survivors.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 01-28-15 5:29 AM
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Oops. Link.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 01-28-15 5:30 AM
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In an autopsy report of 5559 instances of sudden death, 34 (0.6%) reportedly occurred during sexual intercourse. Two other autopsy studies reported similarly low rates (0.6%-1.7%) of sudden death related to sexual activity. Of the subjects who died during coitus, 82% to 93% were men, and the majority (75%) were having extramarital sexual activity, in most cases with a younger partner in an unfamiliar setting and/or after excessive food and alcohol consumption. The increase in absolute risk of sudden death associated with 1 hour of additional sexual activity per week is estimated to be

I find this kinda funny.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 01-28-15 5:32 AM
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266. M. Faure wasn't laughing. I think he ticked all those boxes.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 01-28-15 5:59 AM
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He was at work. Would even a French leader have hit "excessive" on the alcohol and food by that early at the office?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-28-15 6:20 AM
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263: Evidence notoriously destroyed in one famous instance.

Nelson Rockefeller's body was cremated only 18 hours after he was pronounced dead, because Happy Rockefeller, his proper wife, did not want the Medical Examiner's Office to examine his body for evidence for sexual ejaculation.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-28-15 6:23 AM
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If she was happy, he must have been ecstatic.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-28-15 6:25 AM
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Until the end part.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-28-15 6:28 AM
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268. Was he? I thought he was shagging his mistress in a hotel. Maybe that was a different French President.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 01-28-15 6:28 AM
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Subsequent NY Times headline after questions about delayed call to 911 and various clumsy attempts at a cover up: "4 Rockefeller Children Say All at Hand Did Their Best"


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01-28-15 6:29 AM
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272: They were at the Élysée Palace. I had to look at the Wikipedia page because I couldn't spell "Félix Faure".


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-28-15 6:31 AM
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Anyway, the obvious lesson is to stick to the 1/2 + 7 rule even for mistresses and to moderate your consumption of food and alcohol.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-28-15 6:48 AM
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Fair enough. That must have been some BJ.

The gag I learned about the incident had a journo asking the cop on the scene, "Avait-il sa connaissance?*", to which the cop replied, "Non, elle est partie par l'escalier de service."

*Connaissance: Consciousness/19th century slang for an unofficial girlfriend (=acquaintance).


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 01-28-15 6:51 AM
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It was good enough for her to marry a British noble.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-28-15 6:54 AM
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But not the Duke of Argyll.

I can't find a version of the picture in question, has the internet suddenly decided to be tasteful?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 01-28-15 7:14 AM
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he ticked all those boxes

Is that what they were calling it?


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01-28-15 7:19 AM
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278: How did people see the picture back before the internet? The Sun?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-28-15 7:20 AM
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I think I saw it in a popular treatment book about the 50s. It wasn't a very interesting picture.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 01-28-15 7:23 AM
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A pop-up book would have probably been too much.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01-28-15 7:29 AM
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A further deflation of the OP link with additional details beyond link in 249. Sifu and I will accept as reparations various forms of consumable alcohol.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 01-28-15 7:40 AM
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