Re: The Pony Business

1

No, it's an old joke about the optimist kid and the room full of shit.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:09 PM
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I think McCain is referring to the fact that he kills baby ponies and buries them in his backyard. Then, after a few weeks, he digs them back up, and eats them.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:09 PM
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Started with the Simpsons, and thence to Bell, I thought.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:09 PM
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Calvin and Hobbes? Really?


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:10 PM
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You'd think ogged could spell Belle Waring's name correctly.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:11 PM
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No, I'm serious. My aunt tells this joke. The parents want to teach the kid a lesson because he's overly optimistic, and so for Christmas, they get him a room of manure. The kid says, "With all this shit in here, there's got to be a pony somewhere!"


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:11 PM
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Follow the link on "introduced," people.

Sifu, you're fat.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:11 PM
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It started with Calvin and Hobbes, yes.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:12 PM
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You all, McCain is referring to the old joke, of his generation. Not the Calvin and Hobbes strip.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:13 PM
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10

And Belle's post is definitely where Atrios got it from.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:13 PM
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11

I'M RIGHT.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:13 PM
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9: never!

Or: probably.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:14 PM
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"The Pony Engine" was an alternate title for the story better known as "The Little Engine that Could."


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:14 PM
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14

Sounds like heebie is right. Googling reveals that it is an old joke, and it makes sense in context.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:14 PM
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Heebie is being fecesious.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:15 PM
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Heebie is right, people. Humor her.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:15 PM
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17

So seriously is the misspelled some clever joke I'm failing to get?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:15 PM
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"misspelled name"


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:15 PM
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It's not even clever, fatty.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:16 PM
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20

i'mrighti'mrighti'mrighti'mrighti'mrighti'mrighti'mrighti'mrighti'mrighti'mrighti'mrighti'mrighti'mrighti'mrighti'mrighti'mrighti'mrighti'mrighti'mrighti'mrighti'mrighti'mrighti'mrighti'mrighti'mright


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:16 PM
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17: Probably.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:16 PM
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Hey, you misspelled her first name, too!

I should be smoking more pot.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:18 PM
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23

To convince you it's not the dementia?


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:19 PM
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23: exactly the thing.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:20 PM
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Where's Ben? He can probably explain the whole thing in great detail.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:22 PM
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Sifu are you doing that on purpose?


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:22 PM
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26: who knows!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:24 PM
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It's possible that Sifu honestly doesn't know why I would misspell the name. It's not a huge deal that her name appears here (it appears in other places on the blog), but I'm still going to play Mercy with Sifu if I meet him.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:24 PM
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eb is being punny. And Heebie, I'm quite happy to admit you're right. Back to the salt mines now!

(Sifu, it's explained on Standpipe's blog, except for the part that's not a joke, which once existed in a page linked on the front of this blog but vanished.)


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:25 PM
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Light is gradually dawning. Or maybe that's the pot!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:26 PM
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SO I got invited to my college graduation by a some students who think I'm the best Professor evar. But that means I will have to shell out for regalia. Regalia is expensive.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:26 PM
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I'll happily accept my award for Most Petty Commenter. Thank you all who indulged me on my rise to the top.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:26 PM
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33

Goneril is going to put on his robe and wizard hat!


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:27 PM
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34

Is Sifu's head made out of marbles? Stay tuned.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:27 PM
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35

Canadian PhDs get the goofiest hats.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:28 PM
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34: signs point to yes.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:28 PM
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Canadian PhDs get the goofiest hats.

I think there are some Eastern European places that have truly awesome stuff like ermine tricorns and so on.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:29 PM
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Goneril is going to put on his robe and wizard hat!

At the ole Alma there was a famous faculty member in the department who would go around campus (and attend talks) with an enormous carved staff and two huge dogs. When he (invariably) got annoyed at a speaker he would bang the staff on the ground and the dogs would give menacing looks.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:31 PM
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Um, speaking of non-jokes, I'm kind of horrified by the latest addition to the Flickr pool. It's not the garden-variety racism so much as the sheer astonishment. People actually take time out of their lives to bring Confederate flag signs to an MLK Day celebration?


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:31 PM
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I dunno. My alma mater has 8-sided Tams of Power.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:32 PM
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heebie, it must be sad getting old and having these young people not comprehend your cultural references. It's just you and your cohorts in the McCain generation that understand these gags any more.

It must also be infuriating that aging furriners like ogged, who also don't share your cultural framework because they are un-American, aren't deported forthwith.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:32 PM
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My alma mater has 8-sided Tams of Power.

I thought most Tams had 8 sides.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:35 PM
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One of my sweetest ESL students is signed up for a class in which I'm teaching The Wizard of Oz, and she explained that she'd never heard of it. She's been in the US for 12 years! It's sort of endearing.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:36 PM
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I imagine it is a characteristic they share with other Tams, along with making the wearer look utterly ridiculous.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:37 PM
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45

I see your point, Cala.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:42 PM
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I should get a Tam O'Shanter.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:42 PM
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People actually take time out of their lives to bring Confederate flag signs to an MLK Day celebration?

A friend of mine lived in Utah for a chunk of the mid-90's. I remember talking to him on the phone in the early spring one year after he and some friends had gone on a hiking trip in the mountains. They came across a not-too-old camp site that included, among the detritus, a framed picture of MLK that had been used as target practice.


Posted by: JL | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:43 PM
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48

Admittedly, the nose is optional.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:43 PM
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Although 8 sides is apparently only one of many options.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:43 PM
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Is that Apo at the bottom there?


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:46 PM
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The Calvin and Hobbes thing spawned the Belle
Waring thing. The room full of feces thing spawned the John McCain thing. Four separate things, parallel lines of descent. Not related.


Posted by: Fatman | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:51 PM
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52

48 to 47?


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:52 PM
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The kid digging through shit to find the pony isn't just an old joke, it's famously a Reagan joke: McCain's trying to summon up some of that Great Communicator mojo.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:54 PM
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A friend of mine here has 4 twentysomething children who have 10 ponies to play with.

Are they grateful? No. Fucking kids.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:56 PM
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55

So between the media and the cemeteries, he's pretty much got the thing locked up already.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:57 PM
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The room full of feces thing spawned the John McCain thing.

You got your verb tense wrong. The Republican convention is still in the future, and therefore "will spawn" is correct.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 8:58 PM
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It's a Reagan joke? A friend of mine co-wrote a book about the AOL/TW merger called There Must Be a Pony in There Somewhere whose title derived from the joke. But Reagan?

Also: LizardBreath!


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 9:08 PM
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55: Oh, scary. Politicians shouldn't speak idiom unless they speak blogosphere.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 9:11 PM
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Anyway...

It's unbelievable but true. The press enjoys promoting McCain much, much, more than it enjoys promoting Obama.

Obama was our only hope, to find someone, anyone in the world whom the press would be more biased in favor of than McCain!

This bodes ill.


Posted by: Fatman | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 9:11 PM
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Obama was our only hope, to find someone, anyone in the world whom the press would be more biased in favor of than McCain!

Fortunately, McCain looks like a crazy old gnome on camera.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 9:13 PM
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Fortunately, McCain looks like a crazy old gnome on camera.

Unfortunately, on camera Obama doesn't really look like he's white.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 9:14 PM
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Yeah, I have a hard time picturing anyone who might possibly vote for a Democrat ever looking at McCain next to Obama and voting for the ancient cancer-ridden troll with the baggy neck.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 9:15 PM
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57: I miss all of you guys -- I really have to figure out a schedule that lets me comment more. This actually working during the workday thing, much as I'm enjoying it, has some drawbacks.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 9:16 PM
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the ancient cancer-ridden troll with the baggy neck

This has to be sexist.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 9:18 PM
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63: put the kids to bed at 6.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 9:18 PM
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Reagan and the pony joke.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 9:19 PM
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67

I dunno. My alma mater has 8-sided Tams of Power.

You need to upgrade to 20-sided if you want to make your saving through against committee.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 9:22 PM
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68

Throw! Throw! I am full of tequila, people.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 9:22 PM
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69

Stanford's regalia sux.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 9:22 PM
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68: full? That's a lot.

It appears that Chambord has hardly more alcohol per volume than wine, and I've had much less than a glass of it, but I feel tipsy.


Posted by: peter | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 9:24 PM
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You need to upgrade to 20-sided if you want to make your saving through against committee.

I've heard that if your comeliness score is high enough, you don't have to worry so much about this.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 9:26 PM
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Stanford's regalia sux.

It does. I believe they've been augmenting it over the years, too --- initially it was all plain and egalitarian and new frontierish, but it's acquired various embellishments.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 9:26 PM
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73

It's more that I have a delicious tequila center, I suppose.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 9:27 PM
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74

53

"The kid digging through shit to find the pony isn't just an old joke, it's famously a Reagan joke: McCain's trying to summon up some of that Great Communicator mojo."

Not just McCain. Here's Clinton .


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 9:28 PM
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75

74 was me.


Posted by: James B. Shearer | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 9:29 PM
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Jesus, her comic timing is awful.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 9:30 PM
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77

She should drop out.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 9:31 PM
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78

I just had a revelation: I'm going to assume she already has.

This is going to make my life so much easier.

Hey, what's she doing on TV? It's a mystery! Oh well, moving on.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 9:35 PM
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Yeah, I have a hard time picturing anyone ... voting for the ancient cancer-ridden troll

I'd vote for ogged !!


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 10:16 PM
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From Time magazine. I actually remember reading this issue when it came out back in 1986:

Reagan still has his suits made with buttons on the flies. He refuses to wear makeup for television. He pumps iron every day. He rides a horse when he can. His favorite story is his old surreal barnyard parable regarding optimism --about the boy who finds a pile of horse manure in a room and cries excitedly, "I just know there's a pony in here somewhere."

The septuagenarian in the White House is not necessarily getting any younger. On the other hand, he does not seem to be getting any older. His suit size has been the same for years--42--and so have the ideological furnishings of his mind. His principles give him a certain serenity, and possibly the luck that comes to the optimist. Reagan keeps finding the pony.


Posted by: Gaijin Biker | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 10:46 PM
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Of course Heebie was right, and anyone who doubted her is a complete sexist. Had to google it indeed. Hmph.


Posted by: bitchphd | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 10:48 PM
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81: I know, right?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 10:49 PM
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His principles Alzheimers gives him a certain serenity


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 10:51 PM
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78 is genius. I feel the weight of the world lifting from my shoulders. Wanna be my lifecoach, Jetpack? Also: Breach sucked. Watching it in installments over three nights didn't help.


Posted by: Ari | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 10:56 PM
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84: I am so happy to help you, Ari.

I thought Breach was okay. I wish they hadn't cut all the scenes where something happened, obviously.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 11:00 PM
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86

When did Ari start calling Teacher Tweety "Jetpack"?


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 11:06 PM
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If by "okay" you mean "sucked," then yes. Also, was there ever a reason given (a joke maybe?) for why Ogged misspelled Belle's name?


Posted by: Ari | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 11:10 PM
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86: starts here, I'd imagine.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 11:10 PM
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Also, was there ever a reason given (a joke maybe?) for why Ogged misspelled Belle's name?

Someone who posts here is often confused with Ms. Wearing, and we try to keep google from exacerbating that.

IOW, RTFA, n00b.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 11:12 PM
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I thought digging a pony had something to do with Yoko Ono.


Posted by: onymous | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 11:12 PM
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86: Yes, 88's right. And as there can only be one "Arctic Wolf" -- and he is me -- Jetpack is Jetpack. Fin.


Posted by: Ari | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 11:13 PM
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IOW, RTFA

These are unions? Or mass transit?


Posted by: Ari | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 11:14 PM
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93

When I finally go pseudonymous, I'm taking Arctic Wolf from you, Ari. Sorry.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 11:17 PM
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Taking it from me, technically.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 11:19 PM
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What Jetpack wants, Jetpack gets.

(I spent close to a thirty seconds placing and them removing the comma in the above sentence. I would blame this on Ben, but I do this all the time.)


Posted by: Ari | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 11:24 PM
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89.3, for serious.

Also, pop quiz for criticizing me: instead of nothing, what should you say to him if you're in the same bar as David Cross? I was trying to come up with a never-nude joke and failing. I also considered asking what he'd done with Odenkirk's body.


Posted by: washerdreyer | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 11:32 PM
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Ari, Ari, Ari. You're embarrassing me here.


Posted by: bitchphd | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 11:53 PM
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98

When did Ari start calling Teacher Tweety "Jetpack"?

RTFA.


Posted by: bitchphd | Link to this comment | 04-15-08 11:53 PM
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99

Nothing that happened within the past week counts as being in the archives.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 12:03 AM
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100

What is this, random self-serving rule day? If you can't keep up with the reading, Benjamin, you need to drop the course.


Posted by: bitchphd | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 12:07 AM
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That self-serving rule wasn't random at all.

Those comments haven't been archived yet.

If you can't keep up with the reading, Benjamin, you need to drop the course.

Sassy!


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 12:09 AM
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97: I'm sorry?


Posted by: Ari | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 12:09 AM
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If you can't keep up with the reading, Benjamin, you need to drop the course is quote good.


Posted by: Ari | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 12:10 AM
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HEEBIE WAS RIGHT!!!!!!111!


Posted by: Belle Waring | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 12:10 AM
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I'd like to clarify, as this will all be archived, that I meant "quote good." As in, good enough to quote. See?


Posted by: Ari | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 12:11 AM
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106

Didn't bother to read the thread, but heebie is right in 1.


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 12:25 AM
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RTFA has a known corollary: RTFT.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 12:28 AM
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108

Earliest mention I found in Google books was somewhat interesting: Kesey's Sometimes a Great Notion, with a variant being told on the eternal optimist Joe Ben.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 12:57 AM
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99: Nothing that happened within the past week counts as being in the archives.

Uh, on my edition of the unfogged.com weblog, there is a link for "04.13.08-04.19.08" under the heading "ARCHIVES". When I click on said link (here! you can do it too!) I am delivered a page that contains a graphic that contains the text "The Archives". These are no longer sufficient conditions for being a part of the archives?


Posted by: Otto von Bisquick | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 1:01 AM
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102: You're supposed to *know* these things.


Posted by: bitchphd | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 2:05 AM
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111

Good morning! I'm still right!


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 6:52 AM
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111: As is well known, rightness is measured using modulo arithmetic. And with this latest declaration, you've become so right that you have wrapped around to wrong.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 7:08 AM
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As is well known, rightness is measured using modulo arithmetic.

This is somehow related to the cliche that a stopped clock is right twice per day, right?


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 7:12 AM
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My aunt tells this joke.

Heebie is related to the Clintons!!!


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 7:30 AM
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115

It's not a huge deal that her name appears here (it appears in other places on the blog)

When I asked a while ago if writing Be//e Wa//ing was an indiscretion error you *personally* said it wasn't.

I can be more petty than Heebie.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 7:39 AM
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116

115 => 104


Posted by: OneFatEnglishman | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 7:52 AM
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107: ITFJ.


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 8:53 AM
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111: Heebie and LB are so right. Famous Reagan joke.


Posted by: bill | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 9:06 AM
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Uh, on my edition of the unfogged.com weblog, there is a link for "04.13.08-04.19.08" under the heading "ARCHIVES". When I click on said link (here! you can do it too!) I am delivered a page that contains a graphic that contains the text "The Archives". These are no longer sufficient conditions for being a part of the archives?

That's right.

Being archived has to do with the database and the location of the comments files on the server.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 9:10 AM
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...and now I've said too much, and will have to kill you.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 9:11 AM
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It seems to have been an all-purpose Reagan anecdote. I remember coming across it the first time in David Stockman's memoirs of his stint as Reagan's Director of OMB, "Triumph of Politics: Why the Reagan Revolution Failed." IIRC (since I don't have my copy of the book at hand), when Stockman tried to explain to Reagan why Voodoo Economics was producing gargantuan deficits in the out-years, Reagan wasn't willing to shift policies -- said he was still looking for that pony in the pile of manure.


Posted by: nadezhda | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 10:21 AM
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121: Stockman's experience eerily resembles Paul O'Neill's and John DiLulio's about two decades later. Little-government Republicans and conservative Christians both got suckered twice by the militarists, country club Republicans, and mercenary grafters.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 10:34 AM
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122: John DiIulio, yeah?

I feel bad for those kind of republicans, sort of, but geez if you're that easy to sucker. Maybe it's because they have addictive personalities, like problem gamblers who can't really get a grip on the odds?

"This time it'll be different!"


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 10:43 AM
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While I am not quite in either of those categories, but I have suckered surely. The problem is, where to turn if one is a glibertarian like moi.


Posted by: Tassled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 10:48 AM
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124: inward, towards an examination of one's beliefs?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 10:50 AM
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126

Dude, that sounds like work. Pleasing soundbites that feed my vanity and fears alternately, that's what I want.


Posted by: Tassled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 10:52 AM
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Oh, okay. Democrats believe in freedom, TLL! They believe in protecting you from the rapaciousness of multinational capital, and in allowing you to become a captain of third-wave industrial framitzing! You'll be rich, nurtured, and proud, along with your fellows -- except the bad ones, obviously, they won't be coddled in any meaningful way.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 10:54 AM
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Pleasing soundbites that feed my vanity and fears alternately, that's what I want.

Good thing you've already discovered the blogosphere, then.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 11:05 AM
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127. When the student is ready, the master appears. They don't call you Sifu fer nuttin.


Posted by: Tassled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 04-16-08 11:08 AM
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