You need, we provide – an open thread.

You know the drill! The Khan appears to be out on the steppe, leaving the Golden Horde to fend for itself in matters conversating. And so fend we shall!

One note: I’ll be at my desk only intermittently this afternoon. If you’re new here and your first comment gets sent to moderation (or if you make that most frequent of errors and use a different user name all of a sudden), I promise to get you out as soon as I can!

Standard FYI clause: My rule of thumb is that I wait for two hours after Ta-Nehisi would usually open a thread (roughly noon, EST), and if none is forthcoming, I put one up here.



  1. jcalchemist

     /  January 17, 2012

    I’m mostly a lurker, but I just wanted to tell you all that you make my days more entertaining and informative. The Golden Horde is one of the very best things about the Internet.

    • Captain Button

       /  January 17, 2012

      Also: Wrestling camels?

      • So R created a cat bed for the outdoor one on my dresser, where she comes and sleeps and watches over me all night.
        Troublemaker and FatOne are *very* displeased at this aggressive white cat up high overlooking their humans as they sleep. They usually wait until both he and I are in bed before staking out coverage on both of us. This is why, for the last few night, I have woken up to find a large overweight male cat deliberately loafed upon my chest, his face filled with feline concern.
        For the record, Outdoor one is unpreturbed by this silliness on their parts. When she sees me sit up, she stands up stretches and jumps down and saunters downstairs for breakfast, leaving the two of them huffing and puffing and prowling the bedroom in case she returns. (As if! She down by the food bowls like a smart cat, bitches.)

    • I thought you’d be linking Darwin:

      (The moment cats figure out opposable thumbs, human society is DOOMED. Also I often wonder if part of the reason housecats use their front paws like hands so often is because they observe human behavior so much. No idea if feral cats or other cat species do it too.)

      • Drake headbutts the top of the food cannister to try and make it spin open to get at the precious dry food.

        One time i didn’t close it properly and he actually managed to get the lid off. Let me tell you, that fat cat was sprawled the fuck out on the kitchen floor, stuffed to the kitty gills when I walked in that night.

      • That is a fascinating question, and if no one has done a study yet, I’d very much like a study to be done. Do feral cats use that technique? Huh. Inquiring minds want to know! But they have no idea how to find out.

      • Darth Thulhu

         /  January 17, 2012

        Polydactyl kitties are utterly adorbz.

        And on their way to planetary dominance, obvs. Soon they will take over our computers and military systems, before demanding kitty treats.

      • AlexBlake

         /  January 18, 2012

        Late, and Anecdote not Data.

        One of the ferals around here on Saturday was using her paws to pick up a hickory nut and bat it around. It’d skitter across the ground, and she’d pounce on it, scoop it up, and bat it back the other way. It looked almost like a cross between Hackysack and Field Hockey.

        Her sister likes to try to headbutt/chop block me when I put out the food in the morning. That one’s semi-feral. She’ll let me pet her after i’ve put the food down and she’s eating.

        That Idiot Ollie is our indoor cat. He knows he’s supposed to be able to use his paws for things, but he just can’t quite figure it out. Rather than hook the cupboard door with his paw and pull it open, he just bangs on it, all confused as to why it won’t open.

  2. So this weekend I was making lentil loaf. (Those of you who are not nomnivores can pretend I was making meatloaf. But I’m here to tell you, it was yummy.)

    Anyway, the recipe called for bread crumbs, which I didn’t have because making bread crumbs is a pain and buying them is an abomination. But I did have oatmeal. So I used that and it came out great. From now on, f*** bread crumbs.

    Oatmeal. Is there anything it can’t do?

    • helensprogeny

       /  January 17, 2012

      Yea!!! Oatmeal!!

      But can it change your lightbulbs?

      • I will have to leave it out of the cupboard and see what happens. Obviously it’s not going to change any lightbulbs while I’m watching.

        • helensprogeny

           /  January 17, 2012

          But then how will you know that it was the oatmeal and not the cat with the thumbs?

          (Also, dude: Oatmeal + Horde generally = riot. Just sayin’.)

          • Oh, I know. That’s why I did it 🙂

            Guess I’ll have to take the oatmeal out of the cupboard and put the cat in the cupboard. It’s okay, he likes it in there.

            • A) This made me laugh.

              B) I would posit that the oatmeal is too short. But then, perhaps it has perfected a kind of oatmeal acrobatic-ness that will allow it to reach anything it wants. Who can tell?

    • Oh, oatmeal in meatloaf has long been the Hauser family thing!

      Bread crumbs – feh!

    • Captain Button

       /  January 17, 2012

      Samuel Johnson referred, disparagingly, to this in his dictionary definition for oats: “A grain, which in England is generally given to horses, but in Scotland supports the people.” His biographer, James Boswell, noted that Lord Elibank was said by Sir Walter Scott to have retorted, “Yes, and where else will you see such horses and such men?”

    • But… but… breadcrumbs! they last forever in the freezer! they’re fried! don’t abandon the breadcrumbs!

      • Yeah, and then they taste all freezer-y. Come over to the oatmeal side.

        • Not if you keep them in tupperware. What’s wrong with you people? Oatmeal isn’t fried!

          • Technically i don’t think that bread crumbs are always fried. That’s croutons. And maybe fried oatmeal would be good too, who knows?

            • You certainly fry steel cut oats before using them to make oatmeal.

            • I’m talking about the Ruth Reichl style of breadcrumbs: dump chunks of stale bread in the food processor, fry the resulting crumbs, and store in the freezer. Dead simple, easy to do in quantity, lasts forever. It occurs to me that that’s probably not ideal for the interior of a meatloaf, though. Croutons, in contrast, are fried cubes of stale bread.

              Toasted oatmeal is pretty good. Don’t see why fried would be worse.

            • Ooooh! Fried steel-cut oatmeal is actually delicious! Or, it is at the one restaurant at which I have ordered it several times. I’ve never had the courage to try it at home, but I think I’ll have to.

    • I actually use saltines instead of breadcrumbs. It gives a nice smooth texture when you mix it with a bit of milk and make a panade before mixing it in.

      • MILK?!

        /kosher-keeping Jew passes out.

        • Captain Button

           /  January 17, 2012

          Why is using milk in a lentil loaf not kosher?

        • Once you’ve lived with a man who thinks nothing of making Hamburger helper, it stops being quite so disturbing. At least in this recipe the milk doesn’t look like milk when mixed with the meat. (Unlike hamburger helper where he literally pours milk into the browning meat. I swear the first time I saw it, I gagged involuntarily.

    • Oats reduce blood cholesterol too. Bread, er, doesn’t.

    • My birthday is the 12th, but any potential celebration is being postponed, as I’ll be in Richmond for my niece’s 1st bday party. I’ve been dying to come to one of these meet-ups since The Horde really got going 3 years ago. If there’s a tie, would my birthday break it in favor of the 18th/19th?

    • That is the shortest survey I ever took, hehe.

    • As always, I will be there in spirit whenever one person makes fun of another person for some sort of trivial, superficial mistake.

      • I’m actually going to be there in body.

        Come on out, warrior!

        • Too far. You can drunk dial/drunk text me if you’d like.

          • : (

            I don’t even drink so I won’t even be able to do that… (which, it comes to me, I could actually do from anywhere on earth, I wouldn’t have to be present & accounted for, but never mind that).

            Alas! We’ll have to just speak of you in disparaging tones, then.

  3. By the way, am I the only one “going dark” tomorrow for SOPA?

    • Well, I hadn’t planned to. On the contrary, I’m just mercenary enough to think that by staying open, some extra bored people might find me.

      Which is not to say that I support SOPA – I don’t. I just don’t plan on going dark.

    • Captain Button

       /  January 17, 2012

      Have to look to see if there is a way to shut down my livejournal for a day. Not that anyone looks at it, (nor should they).

      • cofax

         /  January 17, 2012

        Have to look to see if there is a way to shut down my livejournal for a day

        You could delete it–deletions are not permanent for 30 days, I think. Or mark all your entries private for a day.

        But it only would have any effect if people treat your LJ like a blog: whereas most LJs are read via a friendslist/reading list, and if you don’t show up on someone’s friendslist, they would just assume you didn’t post that day.

        So I’m not sure doing it would have any value. You could instead do a post that is completely black, or something, to symbolize the censoring of the internet.

        • Captain Button

           /  January 17, 2012

          I went through and set all my posts to private. Since we are talking only a few dozen.

    • Can one also protest SOPA by not using the Internet at all? Because yeah, if I took my blog down for a day very few people would notice. But I could manage a boycott.

    • Brian S

       /  January 17, 2012

      Nope. I’m going dark too. Of course, it helps that I’m teaching my first class in what feels like forever tomorrow, so I can’t afford the distraction, but I decided to do it regardless when I saw Wikipedia was doing it.

  4. Not much to report… the county library that interviewed me twice has not gotten back in touch with me by now, so I am operating on the belief they hired one of the other three finalists. 😦 Just gotta keep plugging away…

    • At this point Paul, I honestly have to believe that they would get in touch directly either way. My impression is that if you make it that far in any interview process, they treat you like you’re deserving of a human response.

      I’m keeping my fingers crossed, well and firmly.

    • cofax

       /  January 17, 2012

      Never hurts to call HR and ask, “Is there any other information I can provide to help in the decision-making process?” That keeps your name fresh and also lets you know that you did something.

    • taylor16

       /  January 17, 2012

      Well, I’d say that it’s not over until you get that phone call. Who knows – maybe the manager who has to sign off on an offer had to go out of town for a few days. Maybe there was some kind of crisis that delayed the final decision by a few days. It’s never over til it’s over.

      And depending on how long it’s been, I’d agree with cofax … there’s no harm in calling to follow up and reiterate your interest, right?

      Either way, I’m still keeping my fingers crossed for you…

    • I’m with Taylor and Cofax. And Emily. At this point, after multiple rounds, they owe you a personalized phone call or e-mail regardless so it’s not over until you get one. If it’s been a business week (or close to one) since the last time you talked with them, dropping a quick line of continued interest to HR as Cofax suggests is a perfectly fine idea.

    • caoil

       /  January 17, 2012

      It’s also possible that they’re backlogged with work and/or still deciding. I know some of my past interviews have had a verrry long waiting period afterward (especially if it was a public service institution that has to jump through certain hoops when hiring). I waited a month to hear from Health Canada! Anyways. Never give up. Never surrender!

    • Give HR a polite poke. It can’t hurt.

      Fingers AND toes crossed!

    • MightBeLying

       /  January 17, 2012

      I agree with everyone else. And am still crossing my fingers for you!

    • Darth Thulhu

       /  January 17, 2012

      Agreeing with everyone else above, and adding in a patent-pending Darth Thulhu Even-Depressive-Clouds-Have-Hopeful-Linings (TM):

      Worst case scenario is that they are trying to hire one of the other two people, but won’t call you to confirm that they aren’t hiring you until all the background stuff goes through positively for the other person.

      Which still means, even if true, that the worst case scenario still offers the chance that the Favored Candidate’s background check could wash out.

      Give them a loving nudge. Can’t hurt.

      And if they never get back to you, that is also a silver lining and a bullet dodged, because an employer who can’t be bothered to establish professional human contact for such a position is exactly the kind of employer you do not want to be working for.

      Plan for the worst, pray for the best, and congratulations for making it into the Final Three, sir!

  5. I would very much like to thank you all for your kind well-wishes and support.

    Yesterday’s meeting concluded with a verbal offer. When paperwork exists, and is signed, and the announcement is made public by my future employer, then I can tell you all what’s going on. That’ll be in a couple of weeks. 🙂

  6. Captain Button

     /  January 17, 2012

    Now I have a vision of these threads leading to Emily transmogrifying into TNC, Dorian Gray style.

    • watson42

       /  January 17, 2012

      I regret that wordpress doe not allow me to “Like” this comment a thousand times.

    • While that would be… interesting… I think that the last few days at his place indicate that TNC is merely in a go-slow period on the blogging front (which likely means he’s on a going-strong period on other writing) and will occasionally open a thread for the Horde, as time and the mood strikes him.

      But if the other thing happens, I’ll be sure to let you know.

      • jcalchemist

         /  January 17, 2012

        “…(which likely means he’s on a going-strong period on other writing)”

        Let us hope. That, “For reasons important to my fiction” opening of the Tocqueville post yesterday was an enormous tease. I might have even salivated.

  7. mythopoeia

     /  January 17, 2012

    Ugh, head cold day. Anyone have any suggestions for relieving sinus pressure?(Operation Tea Earl Grey Hot has been in progress all day and is showing good interim results.)

    • neti pot? boil the water if you live somewhere where surface water doesn’t freeze.

    • My family’s always been really susceptible to sinus stuff. We don’t get sick otherwise, but we have perpetutally stuffy noses… until we discovered Alka Seltzer Plus—Cold & Sinus. It’s been mana from heaven this year.

    • cofax

       /  January 17, 2012

      I have become utterly dependent on Aleve D–it’s the only thing that really helps my sinuses.

    • SWNC

       /  January 17, 2012

      Yuck! So sorry. Hot tea is my go-to at work. When you get home today, a long hot bath and hot & sour soup for dinner.

    • caoil

       /  January 17, 2012

      Warm facecloths (er, if you’re somewhere you can get away with this) and gentle facial massage.

    • Horseradish – better still, horseradish and garlic tablets from your local, er, somewhere. Works a treat. In desperation, sniff wasabi.

  8. Bookwoman

     /  January 17, 2012

    Today in paperwork: I volunteer for a non-profit grant-making organization. I’m currently reading Letters of Inquiry as part of our 2012 grant process. Proofreading, people. You need to do more of it. Also, filling out *all* the fields on the (quite simple) form is generally a good idea.

    • efgoldman

       /  January 17, 2012

      Proofreading is hard!
      I used to do production for a small record company.
      Released an LP (yes, that long ago) of *Haydn* symphonies.
      I typed and proofread the liner copy. Printer typeset and proofread the liner copy. Sent it back to me for final proofing and approval. My boss checked my work. Priter Printer* proofed it again.
      500 copies of the album went out, said in 24-point type on the back: HAYDEN: Symphonies……

      *ed: Because a typo in a comment about a horrific typo is too funny to go unremarked and uncorrected, I stepped behind the curtain & did both.

      • yeah, my general attitude toward proofreading is not one of “if X makes a typo, X is obviously incompetent or careless” but rather one of “how does X’s typo fit into the rest of what is expressed here?”

        for my students, i usually just mark and correct the typo and move on. i’d much rather they make a consistent, coherent argument, than be brilliant at spelling a language that is orthographically idiotic. if it’s clear they didn’t revise or proofread at all, then i mention that.

        • Bookwoman

           /  January 17, 2012

          Yeah, it’s not like we’re going to withhold money because of typos, but if you’re asking for a grant, it behooves you to make sure that you’ve at least filled in the basic information requested. And/or that you’ve read our guidelines to make sure that you’re not going to all the trouble of filling out the forms when you’re not even eligible in the first place.

          • oh yeah, there’s a huge difference there. i was riffing off of efgoldman’s point: we all do it, and when we do it, we do it spectacularly.

      • wearyvoter

         /  January 17, 2012

        Also, there’s letting a technical journal go out the door with the wrong month on the cover. Happened at my place of employment several years ago (5 sets of eyes later–fortunately, I was not among the 5 sets– and it still went out. Mistake having to do with templates and lack of changing date in same. Inside was fine. Cover, 16 point font, boldface, wrong month.)

  9. David L

     /  January 17, 2012

    I’m pretty sure the air conditioner is on in my office. And it’s a mild-ish day outside so perhaps it’s necessary, but the net result is that it’s freezing in here.

  10. efgoldman

     /  January 17, 2012

    Posted in the last hour by Greg Sargent. The GOBP/Miister maybe ought to be more worried than they are (down ticket, too:

  11. efgoldman

     /  January 17, 2012

    That’s “Mittster”.
    No edit button for the backup horde.

    • Sorry. But I did give you shit for a typo within the gizzards of your HAYDEN comment, if that’s any consolation.

  12. mini-hordesourcing some advice:

    how, exactly, does one go about finding a good therapist/counselor?

    let me ‘splain. in much of my previous existence, i have had relatively easy access to resources for counseling, which i occasionally sought out when i was in crisis mode but otherwise ignored (in my stubbornness). these were usually referrals through either a) people i knew, b) church, or c) college.

    at this stage of my life, i find myself with access to none of these three (well, i know plenty of people, but none who i know have recommendations to give). i’m in a place in my life where i am stable, healthy, and happy, and it seems like a good time again to dig a little deeper into my neuroses (rather than waiting until another crisis wrecks me).

    but i’m not entirely sure how, aside from google, to go about this. are there any resources you would recommend, or words of advice you can give, or cautions to offer?

    • dmf

       /  January 17, 2012

      it’s worth looking into the different therapy modalities and see which might best suit yer temperament/situation, it won’t tell you everything you need to know about a therapist but it will tell you a lot.

    • taylor16

       /  January 17, 2012

      Well, when I was looking I did two main things, because I didn’t have anyone who could give recommendations either. First, I paid attention to the credentials of the people I checked out – deciding ahead of time if I wanted to see a psychologist, licensed counselor, LCSW, etc. I won’t ramble on about that process … but that was how I started narrowing them down.

      Second, I looked at the website for IU’s LGBT office, where they had a list of therapists who wanted to be listed on the site as LGBT-friendly and had been interviewed and vetted by the office prior to being listed. Now of course, I’m a straight lady … but I figured that working my way down that list might be a good way to find a therapist who I could be pretty sure would be at least somewhat compatible with my personal and political belief systems and outlook on the world (something that’s definitely not guaranteed in this red state). It has worked out very well, actually – I found someone I really liked who I can talk freely with.

      So that’s how I proceeded. Good luck!

    • helensprogeny

       /  January 17, 2012

      Sadly, I have no recommendations to make, since everyone I could recommend to you would be in Tucson. (If you’re willing to travel here, let me know and I can give you a name.) I’ve personally always been incredibly lucky just picking people out of the phone book, but clearly it’s not a method I can generally recommend unless you have a finely tuned intuitive sense of people.

      I don’t know if you have any interest in this avenue but one suggestion I can offer is body work, either as an alternative to or in conjunction with traditional talk therapy. I’ve used body work as an adjunct to talk therapy for many years and have had very high quality experiences addressing emotional and spiritual issues both as a client and as a practitioner. Bowen therapy, Rosen method therapy or anyone trained in somatic therapy can be invaluable in getting to shit and also in solidifying gains or speeding up the progress of talk therapy. Even just plain old ordinary massage can be a great accompaniment to talk therapy. A thought, anyway.

      Best of luck in your endeavors, though. Therapy is not for the faint of heart, and kudos to you for getting out ahead of a potential crisis.

    • MightBeLying

       /  January 17, 2012

      I’m a graduate student in clinical psychology so I go to professional organizations for referrals. I prefer cognitive-behavioral therapy, so I use the Association for Behavioral & Cognitive Therapies ( Their website has a database of providers, I’d also be happy to send out an email to the private listserve looking for referrals if you’d be interested.

      If CBT isn’t what you’re looking for, I’d find a professional organization that represents therapists of the kind you think would be a good fit and look for their website – most will have a provider list.

    • Darth Thulhu

       /  January 17, 2012

      Like Helensprogeny, I can only recommend Tucson avenues. Specifically, the local Catholic diocese’s Catholic Community Services has some awesome psychologists who are also priests (I wasn’t Catholic, but my wife was at the time). Each region’s support will vary in quality and funding, and I have no personal experience with the Maricopa County chapters (on the other hand, there’s *lots* of Catholics in arizona)

      You don’t have to be Catholic, since the Services are a non-profit (like Catholic schools and Catholic hospitals). If you *are* Catholic, they can sometimes work in free support from local priests and congregations.

      If money is an issue, they’re there at very reasonable rates. If it’s truly calamitous, or takes a catastrophic turn, they can even arrange free sessions for non-Catholics. In my time, I never had any effort at a conversion sell, but again, I can speak of positive experiences with the Southern Arizona chapter.

      If you want any more details, feel free to pester me at Darth dot Thulhu at the yahoos.

  13. Snowmaggedon tomorrow in Seattle. Or Snowpocalypse. We won’t know until Wednesday.

    Some are talking up to 4 or 6 inches of snow. The entire city is shutting down.

    How do other places do it with such tremendous amounts of snow?

    /innocently but maybe with a hint of irony

    • mythopoeia

       /  January 17, 2012

      The first step is panic. The second is hyperbole. Seattle appears to be responding magnificently on both counts. 😉

      (Also, please keep all the snow and don’t send any to New York. Thanks.)

      • Heh. One of my friends in NYC was demanding that I send some of the snow her way.

        • taylor16

           /  January 17, 2012

          At this point here in Indiana, I could go for some snow as well.

          I woke up this morning to a thunderstorm and tornado sirens. Roads were flooded this morning and it’s still wet all around town even though the rain stopped. And now the temperature is dropping, and it’s going to get down to about 20 degrees tonight. All of the fun of precipitation AND ice, without any snow! I’m thrilled…

          • wearyvoter

             /  January 17, 2012

            I’m to your west, and I managed to sleep through the crashy, bangy t-storms that blew through here this morning. Husband kindly pointed out that I probably didn’t hear it over my snoring noises. (Damn head cold.)

    • Sacrifice a live rooster to the demon Leviathan. Or, if that doesn’t work for you, a live rabbit will do in a pinch, although with less effectiveness in staving off the Plague of the Cold Whiteness.

      • “Leviathan” means “massive mythological sea creature” in the original Hebrew and was borrowed from the Bible to become “whale” in modern Hebrew.

        Having a hard time envisioning a demonic whale.

        • aaron singer

           /  January 17, 2012

          I don’t think Ahab had a hard time doing that.

          Or, more fun, is The Decemberists:

    • Byrk

       /  January 17, 2012

      A few different ways, but it’s all centered on living in areas with lots of snow. A place with lots of snow has a lot more snow plows and de-icing trucks. They also don’t ban chemical de-icers like Seattle does. Seattle also requires rubber on the bottom of snow plows, which is easier on the roads but isn’t capable of removing all the snow. This is all well and good during a normal Seattle snow storm, which involves a bit of snow at night followed by rain to wash it away the next day.

      People generally have cars with snow tires, sets of chains, four wheel drive etc. which people who live in Seattle are less likely to have. Snow tires over all-season tires make an enormous difference in performance.

      Lastly, we all know that you have to drive very slow and leave tons of time for starting, stopping and turning. You need to understand that you have to accelerate before a hill to get up it, and when cresting a hill you should be going very slow so that you can control the car on the downslope. That you can’t hit the brakes hard, but should use the engine to help slow the car down. You essentially need to be thinking 4X further ahead in the snow versus dry pavement.

      • aaron singer

         /  January 17, 2012

        Yeah, here in Chicago a few days ago we got a few inches (I think about 6-8 where I live) of snow. The city (Streets and San, as the department is known) announced that half the plow fleet was out on the streets: ~250 trucks. Combine that with many tons of salt and it’s very rare that a storm will seriously hamper travel (last year’s blizzard was a rare example, a ‘perfect storm’ combination of many factors). But, Chicago also has to have and keep up all that equipment because we got snow every winter (on average, about 36 inches, though thus far we’re far short of that number this season); other cities, like Seattle, or my former home of Washington, DC, simply don’t need to spend all that money because snowstorms are much more rare.

        • corkingiron

           /  January 17, 2012

          1. Unless security is a big concern, unlock your car doors. Dealing with frozen locks as we transition from humid to cold can be a real problem.

          2. SHovel walkways. When the snow arrives (it already has, here) it will be wet and heavy – but once it freezes as the temp drops, it will turn to iron.

          3. If you have to drive, Mr. Brake Pedal is not your friend.

          4. Low gear is your friend.

          5. Roads in the PNW are cambered to shed rainwater quickly. I have seen cars come to a full stop on the crown of the road – and then slide into the ditch from their own weight.

          6. It’s a snowstorm. Mother Nature wins. Accept your defeat with equanimity.

          7. Popcorn.

          • Number six. I went and bought ingredients and spent the next three days baking.

            • taylor16

               /  January 17, 2012

              This reminds me of the last time we had a big snowfall here a few years back – maybe 2007? It snowed about a foot overnight and into the morning, and we live JUST outside city limits, so that we’re always the last ones plowed when it snows.

              My husband was supposed to go into work, but couldn’t get his car down the road after trying several times. Obviously, the restaurant wasn’t going to be busy anyway so he just called, saying he was snowed in and couldn’t make it.

              His then-boss called him back about ten minutes later, ordering him to come in. He told her, again, patiently, that he truly couldn’t get out of the driveway and couldn’t come in.

              Her: “That’s not true! I just went and looked up your address on Google Street View, and there isn’t even any snow out where you live!!!”


              • aaron singer

                 /  January 17, 2012

                Wow, what a moron.

                Now, if she had access to a spy satellite, OTOH…

                • taylor16

                   /  January 17, 2012

                  Oh shoot … have I inadvertently given away one of the perks of a restaurant manager job??? 🙂

              • Sometimes there’s really nothing to say, is there.

                • Captain Button

                   /  January 17, 2012

                  “Does it show snow at the restauirant?”

              • wearyvoter

                 /  January 17, 2012

                Did one of your hubby’s coworkers deposit her headfirst in a snowdrift?

          • I got to work to a near-empty department. (One person, in town, showed up at 10:30 – the rest of the lazy miscreants stayed home.)

            But tomorrow (Wed) is officially a Snow Day so I can stay home. Currently it’s just gray and overcast, but snow is on the way, “they” reassure us.

            • I did that when we got a bit of snow in early ’07. It was actually kind of pleasant to not fight anyone for the autoclave.

    • I have a hard time imagining that it will really be worse than the ’08 Snowpocalypse. It was way colder during that week or so, so stuff stuck around for a much longer time than it usually does.

      • caoil

         /  January 17, 2012

        Ugh. That was a terrible December. Do not need a repeat of that.

        Worse than the impending snowfall is the potential for wind chills to drop well into the negatives here. Not looking forward to my freezing cold commute tomorrow.

        • The funny thing was that the week we had off that December was the longest break that I had taken from my job in nearly two years. So for me it was actually pretty pleasant. Especially the part where I snowshoed around Forest Park.

          • Where do you live again? There’s a Forest Park about two miles from my house, which is located in Oak Park, which is also next door to River Forest. Not to be confused with Park Forest. Or Riverside. Or Lake Forest. Or Oak Lawn.

            • aaron singer

               /  January 17, 2012

              I don’t know that you could snowshoe in Forest Park, IL. Maybe to an Italian restaurant.

              Also, there is no Oak River than I know of. That seems to be missing. Or a River Park. Or a Park River. But there is an Oak Forest.

              • aaron singer

                 /  January 17, 2012

                Oh, there’s a Forest Park in Oak Park, I misunderstood.
                But is there an Oak Park in Forest Park? 😉

                • No no no, man. There’s a Forest Park next to Oak Park, and vice versa. Forest Place & Oak Park Avenue have nothing to do with it! #andyousayyourefromchicago

                  • aaron singer

                     /  January 17, 2012

                    Oh, I know where Forest Park is; I thought you meant there was a park named Forest in Oak Park. Though as an Evanstonian, I don’t know much about the western ‘burbs.

              • Dude. Forest Preserve! Seriously, you have to leave the 606 on occasion.

                • aaron singer

                   /  January 18, 2012

                  Didn’t think of that. I don’t live in a 606xx, though–Evanston!

                  That said, I do kick myself for not going snowshoeing after last winter’s blizzard–apparently you can go for free on Northerly Island on saturdays.

      • During the 2008 Snowpocalypse I was stuck on I-90 (in a van pool) between Mt. Baker tunnel and Mercer Island. No cell reception, no movement for almost 2 hours. Come to find out that some yahoos had tried to merge several cars into one car at the place where the car pool lanes and the regular traffic lanes merge at the intersection with I-405. Absolute standstill for hours. Cars were abandoned everywhere.

        Got home around 9:00. My cell phone had long died by that point. My wife was surprised because there was NO SNOW where we lived. Pure chaos in Seattle.

        In ’91 (I think, maybe ’90?) I barely made it across the 520 before it locked up tight.

        So even though I make fun of people leaving early when snow is predicted – I leave early.

        And I also purely avoid using a bus during the snow, as they get canceled without notice and without any way to find out if your bus is canceled. The online schedules don’t get updated to reflect canceled trips. I once waited for over an hour, in the snowing snow, for my bus. Not going to let that happen again.

        • This is why I’m so glad that if worse comes to worse, I can walk to work. It takes about an hour, but I know that it’s a reasonably safe course of action when there’s actual snow on the ground.

  14. mythopoeia

     /  January 17, 2012

    I can’t believe that neither of the first two responses contained a Game of Thrones reference. Craig, we need to step up our game.

  15. The last of the interviews is now here. I always want to warn them about the Glee question, but I can never find the nerve.

  16. SWNC

     /  January 17, 2012

    What is the Glee question?

    • Well, it’s actually “what’s you’re favorite TV show.” But it’s important. Because my boss needs to be able to discuss his shows with coworkers. That includes Glee. Also, Game of Thrones and Project Runway.

      You can see why I got hired.

  17. caoil

     /  January 17, 2012

    So today was shaping up to be another fairly blah day in a lengthy parade of them. However, my trip to the post office was fruitful and happy-making because I (finally! have been waiting since 2010!) received the autographed pic of Gina Torres I’d requested for my collection. *claps*

  18. Hello, peoples! Happy new year and all that jazz. A new semester has finally begun and the project from hell is winding down. (knock wood.)

    SO! Photo of the day: Pitchers and catchers report in 33 days (Nationals Park, 2008).

  19. grammar quiz of the day: what is the past participial form of “fend for ourselves”?

    • Your friendly student lounge manager is sure she has no idea whatsoever.

    • Bookwoman

       /  January 17, 2012

      Fended for ourselves, no?

    • MightBeLying

       /  January 17, 2012

      fended for ourselves?

    • Were Fending for Ourselves

    • MightBeLying

       /  January 17, 2012

      WHAT IS THE ANSWER I am dying here

    • We fendit for ourselves.

      *bows courteously, and crawls back to his rather sad grammar-obsessed lair, muttering: we hates them, precious, we hates them, Bagginses*

    • fend, fended, fended. just add a “de-” in front and you’ve got the idea. (however, if you are using it intransitively, it’s a trick question, because it wouldn’t have a past participle form.)

      my students were dismayed the other week to discover that fend doesn’t follow the pattern of send, lend, rend, or bend. one of them still attempts, valiantly, to work “we fent for ourselves” in the conversation on a daily basis.

  20. efgoldman

     /  January 17, 2012

    Apparently today is Ben Franklin’s birthday.
    A commenter over at Balloon Juice posted this, just…. because…..

  21. Kinase

     /  January 17, 2012

    I remember someone posting about Red Tails at TNC’s place last week, so I will leave the NY Times’ write up on its saga, and George Lucas’ last blockbuster here.

  22. I just thought you guys might like to see this:

    Someone, somewhere in America, thinks this man could/should be President?

  23. Then to cheer yourselves up, enjoy this, which has just proved to be the most popular post I ever, er posted.

    Keep up the good work, Emily.

  24. wearyvoter

     /  January 17, 2012

    Gearing up for new uber-boss at day job. Night job winter project is done; waiting for notice about when we start spring project. Enjoying having my evenings back. Now if self-employed spouse could get home before 10, it would be perfect. (OTOH….I have the hot cocoa to myself until then.)