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Filibuster

Posted by Heebie-Geebie
on 11.16.12

Snarkout posted this elsewhere:

Not thrilled with the plan that's leaking for filibuster reform -- it's better than nothing, I guess, but the obvious answer is to require two-fifths of the duly chosen and sworn Senators to sustain debate rather than three-fifths to end it.

I'd been idly wondering if filibuster reform would be addressed.


 

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Car culture

Posted by Heebie-Geebie
on 11.16.12

Blume and I walked all over Cambridge yesterday and you didn't.

It was lovely to get outside on a pretty day and stretch my legs, but what's striking is how (depressingly) little walking I do on a daily basis back in Texas. Here's my usual rationalization that I'm active: I teach about three hours MWF, which counts as active. On the off days I exercise, which counts as active. But we have a small campus, and I drive there, and it is really, really not the same thing as living without a car. Damn.

The flip side is that anytime I'm in a non-car city, I'm struck by how damn long it takes to get anywhere. Unless something is in your immediate neighborhood, taking a subway or a bus or walking inevitably means that you're budgeting at least 30-45 minutes to get there. (I've never biked in a city. But I'm sure that there are 10 minute bike rides and also 30-45 minute bike rides, and that it mostly widens the radius of places you can get to in 45 minutes.) For us, a 45 minute car trip means we were going to another city entirely.

Our grocery store is certainly walkable - it's probably 1/2 mile away - but I never do, because we're so used to the culture of doing one huge weekly trip, and the immediate parking lot and roads around the grocery store are not particularly walkable. You could, but you'd be bucking a lot of expectations of cars and people. The river and park, farmer's market, activity center and downtown square are all walkable from our house*, but those are things we'd do 1-2 a month, not daily. None of our friends live walkably close to us.

* why yes humblebrag.


 

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The non-playboy version

Posted by Ben
on 11.15.12

"what do you have the stuff for but to wear, ever, right?", said Alameida recently, thus showing her metaphorical kinship with Stephen Colbert's mother:

That's right. He died in the war. These were the goggles he wore on D-Day, and I would ski in his goggles. I remember on one of these ski trips, I lost the goggles. I had to tell my mom. I was devastated. And she said to me, "These things are to be used."

It's a good interview.


 

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Petty theft

Posted by Heebie-Geebie
on 11.15.12

My mom inculcated in me a few isolated paranoias, and one of them was that you never leave anything in a hotel room that you'll be upset if it gets stolen. (This is a specific instance of a slightly broader, grounded paranoia.)

With hotel rooms, I'm tempted to shake off this one as an adult, because the only people who go in your room are housekeepers, and they've got such gigantically high reason not to steal my laptop or crappy jewelry. It's not the same situation as, say, the locker room at a gym.

Quick survey - where are you willing to leave your laptop/purse/wallet/valuables unattended?


 

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One of these things is not like the other

Posted by Ben
on 11.14.12

"It's enlightened self-interest for us," Mr. Greene said. "We've always been very competitive when it comes to providing a great intellectual community. But we found there was something missing when we looked at the quality of life for students and faculty who are used to the kinds of amenities you find in places New York, Boston and Palo Alto."

Ah, yes, the many amenities Palo Alto has which Hyde Park (for it is in the South Side of Chicago that Mr. Greene's employer lies) lacks, such as—palm trees, and a predominance of honkies. Had I my perenially misplaced druthers firmly in my control and possession, of course, exhibiting a preference for the anodyne environs of that formerly dry town over any part of Chicago would be grounds for withdrawing the offer of admission (and the fact that it's even an issue just demonstrates how imperfect an art admitting students is).

The article whence the quotation comes is titled, somewhat mind-bogglingly, University of Chicago Works on Its Neighborhood. It's got quite the history of doing that, I believe.


 

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Guest Post - Arrested.

Posted by Heebie-Geebie
on 11.14.12

Nick S. writes:

From the LRB, a well written description of spending a night in a holding cell, awaiting processing after a traffic stop. Reading it makes it very clear how much I live my life with the expectation of not having to interact with the criminal justice system. Nothing he describes is particularly horrible or surprising, yet it's obvious that he had never imagined himself in that situation and neither have I.


 

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Unfogedodecahedron

Posted by Heebie-Geebie
on 11.14.12

Ok, my current plan is to rent a house off VRBO or something for Memorial Day weekend, 2013. So far my criteria are:
1. Easy to get to from DC. (Easy = ? I don't know. Is it possible to find something that wouldn't require a car and yet is far enough out to be on the cheap side? Suggestions welcome.)
2. Big enough for a party and to house people doing the trip on the cheap.
3. Near hotels.
4. Not necessarily near beaches or other things that would drive up the price.

Open thread for suggesting specific regions, criteria, etc for when I book this. Probably I'll book it over Thanksgiving break, but maybe not till the semester is over.


 

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Grain Alcohol and Rain Water All Around, Then

Posted by Alameida
on 11.13.12

So, OK you guys, General Petraeus is 'all in' with his biographer and fellow 'let's run 5 miles at 5am in Afghanistan because we're that sort of person' (and really, isn't it possible that people like that should be summarily executed?) West Point graduate Ms. Paula Broadwell? But then she's hella jealz of Ms. Jill Kelley, who lives in Tampa, Florida and knows the General and his wife, and who is his type, because Betray-Us likes 'em foxy and brunette, with serious cleavage, and slightly buck-toothed? (Only very slightly.) Also, he prefers that they be married and have young children so they don't go blowing things up--except back in the day, of course, when he was more into the daughters of 4-star generals who ran West Point. Because he was sufficiently careerist as a young man to let the big brain do the thinking, but now in his beef jerky years suddenly he's all "the heavenly scent of poon! My will is as naught!" Only oops, Ms. Broadwell has officially lost the plot, and is concerned that Ms. Kelley is (may be? could be?) a rival for General "When I Said Careful Counter-Insurgency I Meant Bombing The Living Fuck Out of Things From Unmanned Drones"'s affections, so she starts sending her threatening anonymous emails. Only...they're more like just bitchy emails and no one can be persuaded to care much? So Ms. Kelley turns to a friend in the FBI to figure it out, and he determines that the emails are coming from Ms. Broadwell, and then she turns up the the cray-cray and sends some from Petraeus's gmail account. Or perhaps it is only the case that in looking at Broadwell's emails, helpful FBI-lad encounters many not-so-innocent emails from Petraeus? Reports conflict on this point. In either case, he has to go to his boss and have a massively awkward conversation about how he's been surveilling the head of the CIA, for a friend, on a solo tip. And at some point along the way he falls prey to Ms. Kelley's apparently considerable charms and emails her shirtless photos of himself. Because. Um. And then the FBI takes over for real. And in fact they tell him to go away now because he's acting totally weird, and he's not invited to briefings anymore and they tell him to stop getting crullers and standing outside the glass-fronted part of the meeting room with a sad vengeful boner. But he thinks they're not investigating because Eric Holder sent that one black guy with a beret to their house to hold the door open for them, and there is nothing so frightening to a white man as that. They've been pissing all down their legs on their own personalized coir doormat their wives ordered from the Pier 1 catalog, all hot on their legs when it's October in DC. So, he goes to tell Eric Cantor that the FBI is totes covering this up for 0bama because BENGHAZI!1!!!! Eric Cantor calls the head of the FBI to yell at him and *cough totally tells the press everything in the men's bathroom of the House gym cough* So, that happens, and then the FBI agents are "consensually" searching Ms. Broadwell's home and computer, (hott!) and they have found classified files on her laptop. Only now something weird happens, since up till now this has only been completely normal, and that is that the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, General John R. Allen, has been exchanging "inappropriate" emails with Ms. Kelley which are also now being read/searched by the FBI--according to them, 20,000-30,000 pages of documents (not all of them emails)!!??!!?/1 Buh. I, personally, like to delete the quoted text, always, all of it, though I know most people...blugh. Not even close, right? Gen. Allen (Soontobe.) (Ret.) used to live in Tampa also, so maybe we can all just wave our hands vaguely and say "Florida, everybody!" like, "whatchyagonnado?" But no, seriously, as Lumpy Space Princess would say, "what the junks? No rilly you guys? What the lumpin' lumps?"


 

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Thus began my inexorable descent into piracy!!!

Posted by Ben
on 11.12.12

A: No, for which reason I have reformatted the emails between me and an employee of Stanford University Press reproduced below.
Q: Is top-posting acceptable in this froup?

On Mon, Nov 12, 2012 at 5:06 PM, [redacted] wrote:
> On 11/11/2012 9:50 AM, Ben Wolfson wrote:
>> On Jul 28, 2011, at 2:27 PM, [redacted] wrote:
>>> On 7/21/2011 7:23 PM, Ben Wolfson wrote:
>>> Hi,
>>>
>>> I have two questions regarding George Wilson's _The Intentionality of
>>> Human Action_, which SUP published in 1989 and which is apparently out of
>>> print.
>>>
>>> First, would there happen to be a copy lying around that I could
>>> purchase? (I'm located in Palo Alto.) This seems unlikely, but I
>>> understand that presses do occasionally have extras or remaindered
>>> copies (though perhaps not from over two decades ago).
>>>
>>> Second, are there any plans to return it to print? It's receiving more
>>> attention now than it got when it was published.
>>
>> Sorry, we don't have a copy, and we don't have plans to reprint.
>
> Well can you just send me an electronic version then?
>
Sorry, no. We don't have one.

Well what am I supposed to do now? Go to the library????


 

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Pundit shaming

Posted by Heebie-Geebie
on 11.12.12

Ok, ok, just a teensy bit more schadenfreude.


 

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Various

Posted by Heebie-Geebie
on 11.12.12

1. Why is this the biggest question and not one of the smaller questions with an obvious answer?

2. I laughed. (Via LizSpigot on FB)


 

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Arizona

Posted by Heebie-Geebie
on 11.12.12

Arizona hasn't counted one third of its votes. Don't worry, it's just the early votes and the provisional ballots that aren't yet counted.

Via JRoth on FB


 

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Nipple rings

Posted by Heebie-Geebie
on 11.12.12

I remember one time when I was pregnant with Hawaiian Punch, I was sitting around talking with a bunch of wives of people on Jammies' hockey team. None of them had kids, but one of them was also pregnant.

She mentioned that she wondered how nursing would go with her nipple ring. I think I said something unintentionally judgmental, because often when I'm surprised and vocal it gets mistaken for judgment (but seriously - go have yourself a merry little nipple ring. I don't care.) Nevertheless, nipple rings just hadn't come up in conversation since I was a sophomore in college and my weird conservative B-school roommate got one, and so I got loud and nosy.

It turned out that several of the wives had one and it was a common thing among this group. Nipple rings are like wigs: when it's done well, you never know who is wearing one. Who knows how common they are! Nipple rings are unlike wigs in that the latter doesn't give me chills if I picture it snagging on something.

(The only reason I bring this up now is that this pregnancy has the same timing on the calendar as Hawaii's, and so I'm remembering all sorts of oddball things I hadn't thought of in years.)


 

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Boston ME-etup.

Posted by Heebie-Geebie
on 11.12.12

I'll be in Boston for a conference Friday, November 16th! Let's have a meet-up. My main request is somewhere quiet because it drives me crazy when I can't quite make out what people are saying.

update: Next week! I'm super excited. What shall we do?

Bumped again: Nathan Williams has generously offered to host. Which is perfect, as far as I'm concerned.

That said, you lurkers should still come out. Now you just have to email me (at heebie dot geebie at gmail) (or Nathan) ahead of time to get the location. It's like a rave. Bring your pacifier!


 

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