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Keeping Our Children Safe

Posted by LizardBreath
on 05.30.09

At a CLE presentation yesterday on sex trafficking and monitoring registered sex offenders I found out that in New York state, there is one and only one profession from which registered sex offenders are barred by law. Should your children be lost or endangered, they can turn to people working in this field absolutely assured that of all the adults around them, this person cannot possibly be a registered sex offender.

You may be thinking of teachers, daycare workers, doctors, possibly even police officers, but that would be overly simplistic. No, the professionals who can be relied on, above all others, not to prey on children, are

Good Humor men. Registered sex offenders can't sell ice cream from trucks. They can do anything else, but not sell ice cream.

The New York legislature is a fascinating thing.


 

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Modern Cartoon Love: Wrong, wrong, wrong edition.

Posted by Heebie-Geebie
on 05.29.09

In the spirit of magazines, let me just note that this is totally, completely outrageously wrong. I am sure that, as they were for me, these were a staple in all of the Mineshaft's youthful library, and that I'll get great camraderie posting this. Who is this Wodehouse fellow, anyway?


 

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Here is your trash, fools!

Posted by Ben
on 05.28.09

Graham Rawle's Woman's World is apparently some pulpy neo-noir about a cross-dressing multiple-identity-having maybe-murderer. I presume it is suitable for beachfront reading.

But wait, there's more! The novel was composed entirely from snippets taken from gal mags from the 60s, which are reproduced in the book itself leading to a delightful confluence of word and significance. If not signification. At times. Highbrow—and lowbrow! Sophisticated irony, commenting on the content through the very tools? Or a sophomoric, intellectually sterile exercise in letting clever people enjoy themselves without having to feel less clever?

Really, isn't the big accomplishment—precisely problematizing this dialectic? Remember this technique for your next intervention!

The book is now out in paperback but I presume that none of you clowns knew about it before, because surely if you did you would have told me, right?

I gather that none of us won that Quarterly Conversation thing, since May's nearly over, but as far as I can tell they haven't announced who did win it.


 

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"99 Problems", OTOH, Would Be Perfect

Posted by Becks
on 05.28.09

Amber asks a great question:

What is the most unintentionally inappropriate song you've ever heard played at a wedding reception. I have been to multiple weddings where everyone present was chanting "we want prenup!" (too late, folks)

 

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With silver bells and cockle shells, and pretty maids all in a row.

Posted by Heebie-Geebie
on 05.28.09

I have a theory that whenever you make an assertion, 75% of the responses will be kneejerk contrarianism. (No, they won't.) Sometimes this is super obnoxious. (No, it isn't.)(I said sometimes. Get off my case.)

When you're sharing something personal and making yourself vulnerable, it's a mixed bag. If you're sharing something positive, you get a lot of ominous "But be careful, because..." or "When that happened to me, I had these unintended consequences..." What amounts to people taking the wind out of your sails.

However, lately, having Hawaiian Punch and needing to vent and cry, I've observed the opposite, which is lovely. Everybody's contrarianism shows up as support, advice, and commiseration. I know that a lot of people have their guard up against sharing the personal stuff that makes life hard. But somehow that's what brings out the best in everyone else. (But on a certain level, the emotional support still feels like contrarianism. Not pointing the finger at anyone online so much as some people from real life. Still appreciated! Just observing.)

I guess in general, being contrary just reflects the mental process you go through when you hear an assertion - where does it fail to be true? (And maybe this is especially just my family's m.o. - we are terrible about being disagreeable for no good reason, and I find it super obnoxious. (Anyway, if you ever need to manipulate my parents, tell them your dilemma but omit your solution, and let them suggest it. If you initially provide them with your solution, they'll just argue with you. With an ominous overtone.)(Yes my parents have been visiting this week, why do you ask?))


 

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Identity / Politics

Posted by Becks
on 05.27.09

Go read Yglesias:

I have to say that I am really truly deeply and personally pissed off my the tenor of a lot of the commentary on Sonia Sotomayor. The idea that any time a person with a Spanish last name is tapped for a job, his or her entire lifetime of accomplishments is going to be wiped out in a riptide of bitching and moaning about "identity politics" is not a fun concept for me to contemplated. Qualifications like time at Princeton, Yale Law, and on the Circuit Court that work well for guys with Italian names suddenly don't work if you have a Spanish name.....
Somehow, when George W. Bush affects a Texas accent, that's not identity politics. When John Edwards gets a VP nomination, that's not identity politics.

 

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Down with the gente: neoyorquinos edition.

Posted by Stanley
on 05.26.09

So it's Sotomayor? I don't know terribly much, as I never got around to reading in-depth on all the possible picks.

I gather the New Haven firefighters' thing is going to be a Thing. And that Jefferson Beauregard "Jeff" Sessions III's voice will annoy me a lot. Oh, and that <scarequote>empathy</scarequote> is now a bad thing, apparently.

I leave all other judicial branch clarifications to the assembled multitude.


 

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I Have The Capacity For Repose Of A Much Younger Woman

Posted by LizardBreath
on 05.26.09

Because I am pathetic, my husband and kids got me a Wii Fit for Mother's Day, and I'm really finding it entertaining. It has very little resemblance to actual exercise, but the balance games are, considered as video games, fun (actually, what I really want is someone to make PacMan using the Wii Fit board as a controller).

The neat thing about it as ego support, though, is that the tests it uses to assess your fitness, mostly, are fundamentally tests of how still you can stand, and I'm great at that. I bow to none in my capacity to remain absolutely motionless; hence, the Wii thinks I'm in great shape. Not so bad.


 

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But I love having a (partial) QWERTY keyboard.

Posted by Heebie-Geebie
on 05.25.09

I got a new phone recently. You have to wake the screen up to see if you missed any calls. My old phone had a little blinking light which changed from green to red if there'd been any activity that you'd missed.

This is a mildly disastrous development for me, because I get phone amnesia already, and requiring one more active step for me to see if anyone contacted me will just prolong the absenteeism. The red light was helpful in reminding me that I have a phone, and people contact me.

When you're buying a phone, there's really no way to check for the tiny details that make a really big difference, because they're so uniquely specific to you, but you might not even recognize their importance until your new phone lacks them. (I got almost murderously upset because I couldn't figure out how to take it off T9 auto-complete mode, but now I'm better.)


 

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"I'm a loner, Dottie. A rebel."

Posted by Stanley
on 05.24.09

Sifu Tweety believes the Unfoggedtariat to be much better-suited to answer this question:

As I get older, I'm finding that relics of my pop-culture past fade from the top of people's memories but remain in mine. For example, I will call people "farging iceholes" and "bastages," quotes from the little-remembered and little-loved movie Johnny Dangerously, a Michael Keaton/Joe Piscopo mob comedy from 1984. I guess I say it to myself because it still makes me laugh, but outside of my high-school friends, who remembers it? So my question is, what bit of pop-cultural ephemera still sticks in your own personal quote machine that few people get?

Whatever you do in comments, please remember to stay gold, Ponyboys and Ponygirls.


 

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Everything's Connected: Law and Economics Division

Posted by LizardBreath
on 05.24.09

Flipping through the OED today (actually, looking up "Leghorn" for my father. An anglicization of Livorno, if you'd been wondering) I came across the word "coase". Apparently it's an archaic word meaning "barter."


 

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