Because The People Might Need It open thread.

Ta-Nehisi is clearly around and posting, but he’s two hours late on the open thread, and here I am, just getting back to my desk. So, just in case the folks need it: Consider this thread open! I’ll lead with dmf’s latest video offering which, I hasten to point out, really happened. It was songified, but the words of the prayer — all of the words of the prayer — actually came out of the pastor’s mouth. Boogity Boogity.

Also: Hey guess what? Nicholas Kristof tweeted a link to this blog yesterdayfrom Tunisia! “Why’s that?”, you say? Because I emailed him about the information included in yesterday’s post, and he decided to help Troy Davis out. Please, do likewise. Read the post (that’ll take about 60 seconds), watch the video (73 seconds) and then sign the Amnesty petition (30 seconds). Two and a half minutes, and you will have helped save an innocent man from execution.




  1. dmf

     /  August 30, 2011

    • The husband brought this to my attention a couple of weeks ago, and will, every now and then, apropos of nothing, bust out with “Boogity boogity boogity – Amen!”…!

      It is a clip to be highly recommended!

      • dmf

         /  August 30, 2011

        the husband doesn’t thank the lord for his smokin hot wife?

        • Except for the whole atheist thing, every day, my friend! : )

          • dmf

             /  August 30, 2011

            me too too, but sometimes its good to say it out loud, to bear witness so to speak…

  2. I am in a Very Bad Mood.

    The rescheduled picnic is tomorrow. It is:
    -In My Way

    I am behind in several ways with several deadlines, and no one is taking that seriously.

    And then I had to go click on something completely triggering from my first marriage/current relationship. I would like to vomit. Instead I am getting sent to Starbucks, because people’s need for coffee trumps my need to actually get back on track.

    please, someone help me get in a better headspace.

    • A) While at Starbucks, I would recommend their Calm tea – it has camomile and is really a nice thing. (Unless you need more caffeine, in which case I would recommend caffeine!)

      B) This pep-talk:

      I posted this once (this boy could almost be my own son — it’s freakish!) but it will never,ever not be a good and worthy thing!

      C) If none of that helps, perhaps Mr. Oatmeal will….

      • Mr. Oatmeal helped a great deal. Thank you.

        Now I just need to find a way to smile through an event run by rank amateurs which I have no power to fix and still have the emotional ability to go and meet new people afterwards. All this after having my first physical since I dunno, 2005? At which they’re going to weigh me? Seriously, it’s going to be hard enough to function after that traumatic experience, let alone deal with people in large amounts.

        • I have not known my weight since I was 18. There is nothing in any reality that requires you to know a number that the world tells you says something unworthy about yourself. You know the world lies.

          Turn your back when you get on the scale and tell the nurse that you don’t want to know the number. I have never, ever had a nurse insist, and I honestly have no idea what I weigh. To paraphrase an old Jezebel pal (I think it was tscheese, but it might have been SputnikSweetheart): I’m size bookshelves, and I weigh sunflowers! (I actually do know my size — I have to buy clothes, after all! — but you see my point here).

          • scone

             /  August 30, 2011

            Yeah, me either. I haven’t known my weight since May 16, 1999 (i.e., the last day I was a lightweight rower, in which I was weighed, daily, in front of my entire team). I just close my eyes and tell the nurse I’d rather not know, too.

          • SWNC

             /  August 30, 2011

            Consider this very “liked.”

    • Sorry to hear that. People can sometimes, you know, be annoying.

    • SWNC

       /  August 30, 2011

      My sympathies. I hate work – related social events, especially if they take place outside of regular work hours. I’m not a grouch, honest. But while I like my co-workers just fine, I like my actual family and friends more and would much rather spend my evenings and weekends with them.

      Oh, and for better headspace, check out this video of an octopus and a coconut. The little guy really loves his coconut.

      • The worst part is it’s mandatory “all hands on deck”…except it doesn’t need to be. There was literally no reason for me to be there last time. I found sh8t for myself to do because I’m that sort of person, but the truth was there was ZERO need for me to be there. And I have no doubt the same will be true tomorrow.

  3. dmf

     /  August 30, 2011

    ee keeping friends in high places, thanks for your efforts for life. on a scarier note:

  4. David L

     /  August 30, 2011

    Sully had a wonderful bit from a GQ article about the end of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”:

    “Since I’m a single officer in the Marine barracks and I’ve got the highest security clearance you can get, I also serve at the White House in close quarters with President Bush and President Obama at social events. Very seldom was the president ever alone, but one time the president had said, ‘Go and get the vice president,’ and all the straphangers went, and the president went in the Blue Room and was just standing there waiting for Biden. And there was no Secret Service around or anything, and I went, ‘Fuck it, I’m going to go and talk to the president about “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” ‘ He was looking out south—there’s an incredible view down past the Washington Monument to the Jefferson. And I just stepped in and said, ‘Sir?’ and he turned around and walks to me and I just started: ‘You know, sir, I want to let you know that there are a number of us that work very close to you who appreciate very much what you’re doing on “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”—more than you probably realize.’ And he was shaking my hand, he looks up and it’s like…he got it. I said, ‘I want to thank you for this.’ And he goes, ‘No, I want to thank you. Thank you for your service, and thank you for your courage.’ ”

    • ****chills****

      That’s so, so wonderful. Thank you for bringing that here!

      /clicks through to GQ…

    • taylor16

       /  August 30, 2011

      That’s one hell of an article … thanks for linking.

      • David L

         /  August 30, 2011

        I haven’t even read the whole article yet. I think I’d get too emotional to do it while at work. But that excerpt was powerful enough to get me to read it when I get home.

  5. Captain Button

     /  August 30, 2011

    Today in cautionary tales:

    If you live alone except for pets, you probably have someone who can get in to feed them when you are unavailable. Like if you are in the hospital. But remember to tell your other friends and family who that person is so they don’t have to go around knocking on random doors nearby to find out if the pets are being cared for.

  6. I finally got Page the Silly Kitty corralled and brought her down to the parents house for a final visit. Page is doing okay now but that cancer lump just keeps getting bigger and bigger and there’s nothing else to be done for her except wait. 😦

    • Oh sweetie, I’m so sorry. Hugs from America’s Middle West, and a scritch for Silly Kitty Page.

    • SWNC

       /  August 30, 2011

      I am so, so sorry for you and the Silly Kitty. Love to you both.

    • scone

       /  August 30, 2011

      Aww. Sometimes all you can do is make sure that kitties are loved and comforted when they are sick.

    • caoil

       /  August 30, 2011

      I’m sorry to hear this Paul. Having lost two to cancer I know pretty much what you’re going through. Make sure she gets lots of her favourite treats, and my Neville sends her a headbonk.

  7. dmf

     /  August 30, 2011

    cuz it’s overcast and I now have to return to the dmv and hope the computers have come back from the dead:

  8. For me, good news/bad news from Hurrican Irene:

    Most Vermont libraries seem to have escaped flooding problems, but one NY library may be gone.

  9. “African American” was not made to do anything except try to create a super man. “Oh don’t you dare feel bad about yourself! You’re African American!” No. You’re an American. Instead of building the country up and saying, “Lookit. We all have the right, here in this country… Look at what happened with Martin Luther King. That makes you an American. ‘Judge not by the color of your skin.’” And you weren’t over in Africa! Your great-great-great grandfather was, your great-great-great-great grandfather may have been, but you weren’t!

    And sure this country sucked for blacks. Sucked. Beyond sucked, for a long time. But it doesn’t now. It doesn’t now. Be proud to be an American. – Glenn Beck.

    Bet FOX is glad they’re shut of him now.

    • >Bet FOX is glad they’re shut of him now.

      Why? Race-baiting is one of their favorite pastimes. Hip Hop BBQ anyone?

  10. Nora Carrington

     /  August 30, 2011

    Thanks, again Emily, for providing this space.

    /shameless self-promotion, because I haven’t had any good news for too long….

    James Fallows quoted an email I sent to him about his “flying while black” series re: Vance Gilbert. Not only that, I was the person he quoted above the jump. I am giddy.

    ABL, who posts here sometimes, right? Has a brilliant wonderful amazing piece up about MLK. A nice companion/counter to TNC’s from a few days ago.

    tender thoughts for those of you having a hard time today, for whatever reason.


      That is awesome. He followed me for a little while on Twitter, and then he stopped and I was genuinely, mildly crushed! I want to win him back. Perhaps I’ll say that I’m you’re friend.

      And it’s not that ABL posts here — I crosspost there! She’s the force to be reckoned with — I’m the tag-along. Which makes me an honorary Angry Black Lady, and I enjoy that just fine.

      She had stopped posting at BJ all together because of the sheer douchey-ness of some of the commenters there, but the other front pagers have wooed her back. The MLK post is her first one back on the front page.+ You should check out her blog, too — it’s a ragtag assemblage of awesome and often funny!

      • Nora Carrington

         /  August 30, 2011

        I write to Fallows under my Real Name; if you tell him you Know Nora Carrington!! he won’t have a clue who you’re talking about. I’ve been thinking a lot about merging identities. I have an abandoned but genuine rep as “Me. on my Birth Certificate.” Google turns up published scholarly articles that are still quoted, anthologized, taught — an identity that mostly dropped off the face of the earth when I quit academia 15 years ago. I want that bitch back, bad. Otoh, I’m rather fond of Nora’s rather unconventional sex life and constant disrespect for authority. Me would have a hard time claiming Nora in public. What’s a Brainiac Slut to Do? Bitch, Ph.D. ended up not being that much help as (1) she’s married and you can do any damn thing you want if you’re married; and (2) she quit academia and shut down the blog and basically sold out as Yet Another Suburban White Woman Playing with Edgy.

        • Interesting, Nora. It’s taken me 15+ years to start using my real name, mostly because an early posting generated weird phone calls. So I used a pseudonym to keep the strangeness out of my life.

          The problem (for me) is that you also never really have an intimate knowledge of someone. So while using my own name has already caused some issues to arise, it’s where I’m comfortable now.

          I guess the problem with using a real name is that if you change over time your old postings can come back to bite you.

  11. David L

     /  August 30, 2011

    It is slowly sinking in that I have made a poor planning decision on my current project at work and am going to have to throw out about a day and a half’s worth of work. This sucks.

    Note to self: When writing software to create a table, a drawing of your data structures should look more like a grid than a flowchart. (For the code-minded among you, I was using a tree to speed calculations of sums and such, which is great until you start working on the actual output and you discover that it takes multiple layers of recursion to traverse just the leaf nodes of two different trees (one for row headings, one for column headings) just to figure out what’s in row x, column y.)

    • For the sake of argument, I’m going to presume that this is English.

    • I was handed excel spreadsheets to do data input in. I felt like a 3 year old having a pacifier stuck in its mouth.

  12. Ian

     /  August 30, 2011

    Headline in my local paper: “Sheen washes ashore in Kodiak.” Got my hopes up, but it was just a sheen of oil.

    • *snort*

      (Oh lord. I typed that and thought: “That’s what he said.” Bad ellaesther, bad ellaesther!)

  13. In today’s adventure of mowing my parents’ yard this morning, I did so under grey forbidding skies of North Pinellas. There were rolls of thunder across the horizon, but most of the stormclouds seem to hover over Tarpon Springs…

    Then just as I was getting started on the back yard…


    When lightning strikes some distance away, you get the delayed roll of the thundercrack. When the lightning strikes within mere feet of you, it’s a goddamn explosion (KA-POW).

    It was the fastest I’ve run in 10 years. People were driving in to their garages down along the street, and they came up to my dad as he came out of the house to explain to him how close that lightning strike was to where I was mowing.

    Later on, when mom got home, she found a laundry line she’d been using to hang houseplant pots along had burned off the pine tree it’d been tied to. Looking up, they spotted the exact place on the poor tree where the lightning had struck.