Your semi-daily open thread – now open.

Knock yourselves out, good people! (Though not literally. That would just be sad).

Standard FYI clause: My rule of thumb is that I wait for 2 hours after Ta-Nehisi would usually open a thread (roughly noon, EST), and if none is forthcoming, I put one up here.

254 Comments

  1. efgoldman

     /  April 19, 2012

    How can I be first? anibudel, you OK?

    • Dude, seriously.

      Ani, ani, are you ok? (<- CPR reference/joke, but still: Everything good?)

      • she’s been hit by, she’s been struck by, a smoooooooth criminal

        • I’ve been hit by, I’ve been hit by serious sugar cravings.

          *Dances away*

          • I don’t have a post due until 4:30, if someone wanted to run around to a Starbucks and then play with a kitty for a few minutes…

            • If someone wasn’t on a diet that says no sugar/no dairy/no grains until May 15th…and wasn’t tied to her desk by a construction draw.
              I think I might just take May 15th off and pretend to be a professional blogger and park my ass at Buzz cafe all damn day.

        • Ooh, good segue! (But please tell me you recognize the CPR reference. Maybe it’s a thing of The Olds).

    • Got stuck in a meeting.

      OMGIWANTSUGAROMGIWANTAFRAPPACINO

      • efgoldman

         /  April 19, 2012

        That would imply that you have a life outside the blogs. Unpossible.

        • I have to keep cat food on the floor.One day blogging might pay for that. This is not that day.

    • JHarper2

       /  April 19, 2012

      Oh, for a Like Button!
      You will have to get by with another onion for your belt.

  2. caoil

     /  April 19, 2012

    For the elves among you: a treehouse. Perhaps not as sturdy as an underground house, but still pretty neat.

    • Captain Button

       /  April 19, 2012

      Proper elves just get the tree to grow into the desired shape.

    • Wowie zowie I love that so much!

      Were you here that day that someone brought pictures of a tree house resort of sorts in (I think) Denmark? Maybe it was Iceland. Somewhere blonde. I’ll have to try to find those again – I was seriously doing the math at one point to see if we could spend an overnight there on our next trip to Israel (short answer: No).

      • caoil

         /  April 19, 2012

        Come to the floating orbs instead! http://www.freespiritspheres.com/

      • helensprogeny

         /  April 19, 2012

        (Oh, so very liked for “somewhere blonde”. Consider it stolen.)

        • A) :: curtsies ::

          B) I WAS RIGHT! Denmark! The mind is a crazy-ass thing, I’ll tell you that. The Tree Hotel: http://www.treehotel.se/

          • caoil

             /  April 19, 2012

            A tree sauna?? Those rooms are quite expensive, if they’re listing the daily rate? 3990 DKK translates to $704 USD today.

            • I know… There was a moment when I did the math all wrong and thought “Why, that’s entirely reasonable!” and then I double checked and went “uhh…”. Sigh.

              I am mildly flummoxed by the fact that the red one is called the “Blue Cone,” but maybe it’s a Danish thing.

    • helensprogeny

       /  April 19, 2012

      That is a thing of beauty.

    • efgoldman

       /  April 19, 2012

      Link didn’t work. Tried three times.

      • efgoldman

         /  April 19, 2012

        (That’s the floating orbs link.)

        • caoil

           /  April 19, 2012

          Hrm. I see what you mean. Maybe the youtube video will?

          • efgoldman

             /  April 19, 2012

            Wicked cool, altho the outhouse kind of spoils the ambience a little.
            And the stairs. Oy. May I borrow your knees?

            • caoil

               /  April 19, 2012

              I see a job here for an engineer, who could come up with some fancy mechanism by which the orb could be lowered for entry or exit and then raised again. That would solve the issue, methinks!

    • Love it… just not enough pictures of the inside, but I”m guessing Mr. Sport Sleeper doesn’t need too much internal comfort.

  3. carlos the dwarf

     /  April 19, 2012

    Today in the Shakespearean tragedy that is my job search:

    I applied for a marketing job at a non-profit, and they want to interview me. But they only want to interview me on a Sunday. Should I consider that a red flag?

    • Is it supposed to be an office job in a more or less day-shift oriented place? Because if so, that’s pretty weird. If it’s a more non-traditionally structured organization or employer, though, that may not be unreasonable…

      • carlos the dwarf

         /  April 19, 2012

        I’m going to go with not-unreasonable for right now, but I’ll keep my guard up for further red flags.

    • Not from where I sit. But it’s up to you

    • SWNC

       /  April 19, 2012

      How big is the organization? If it’s itty-bitty, they may want to have someone from their board sit in on the interview, hence the Sunday meeting time.

      • efgoldman

         /  April 19, 2012

        Correct. I interviewed for a management job with a musical organization. We did it on Sunday so the officers didn’t have to worry about their real jobs.

    • The only thing I would think is that whomever their replacing, ahem, isn’t aware of it yet.

  4. Captain Button

     /  April 19, 2012

    Today in Game of Thrones geekery.

    The primary purpose of the Night’s Watch is to guard the Wall, of course, but it serves at least three other purposes.

    As a penalty for crimes. Many of the criminals of Westeros a given an option to join the Night’s Watch. This is a terrible fate, serving to hopefully deter criminal acts and satisfy victims that the criminal has been punished.

    As a place of exile. When you have lost a war, and can’t make an acceptable peace settlement, why not fight till the end and hurt the enemy as much as you can? One way around such last stands is to allow those who surrender to join the Night’s Watch, which is at least better than being dead.
    This part is why there is such a strict rule that the Night’s Watch stays out of any wars south of the Wall. So you don’t have to worry about the guy you defeated coming back for revenge.

    As a place to dispose of excess sons of nobility. You don’t want too many sons because you could end up like the Freys with far too many nobles and not enough estates to support them. Sending them to the Wall at least gives them a living and a purpose in life, and ensures they will not sire any legitimate children to muddle up the succession.

    Beware of SPOILERS likely to come up on this subject.

  5. efgoldman

     /  April 19, 2012

    Today in ecumenical America:

    1)

    A segment of The Daily Show skewering the media fervor over the “war on women” that recommended that women use “vagina mangers” to protect themselves has come under fire from the Catholic League, who have promised to boycott the show.
    Catholic League president Bill Donohue is quoted in a release:
    We are asking Stewart to apologize. If he does not, we will mobilize Protestants, Jews, Mormons and Muslims to join us in a boycott of his sponsors.

    Because the Catholic League is on crank who is there to make the bishops look good. BTW, you notice that right-wing boycotts pretty much never work? I think the one that some lady in MI started against the TV networks in the 90s, is still going.
    http://www.buzzfeed.com/rosiegray/catholic-league-promises-to-mobilize-religious-g

    2) It’s always the Jews:

    Today, Cantor, the only Jewish House Republican, nearly affirmed that this was the reason he fought against Manzullo’s re-election, insinuating that anti-Semitism — and racism — are lingering problems among the House GOP generally. He speaking at a breakfast event organized by Politico.

    http://thinkprogress.org/special/2012/04/19/467439/cantor-anti-semitism-house-gop/

    • efgoldman

       /  April 19, 2012

      Aaaargh Emily formatting fix, please. Pretty please.

      • Done! I think. Is that what you meant?

        Wait, I’ll even add an apostrophe for you. For free.

        • efgoldman

           /  April 19, 2012

          Thank you! There’ll be a little extra something in your envelope.

    • Captain Button

       /  April 19, 2012

      Vagina mangers?

      Do I really want to know?

      • stephen matlock

         /  April 19, 2012

        Perhaps a delightful solecism.

        Perhaps.

        • enstar

           /  April 19, 2012

          even better: a delightful borrowing from french.

      • It was a real thing. Just a photo of a naked lady with a small creche in front of her . . . most interesting area. I was mildly shocked and I’m not even Christian.

    • carlos the dwarf

       /  April 19, 2012

      Is Cantor the Yiddish word for moron?

    • Bill Donohue vs Jon Stewart. I think I’ll put my money on Stewart.

      • efgoldman

         /  April 19, 2012

        Donohue’s hobby horse used to be the “anti-Catholic” Boston Globe.
        Maybe it was the start of the paper’s decline. They published every goddamned letter to the editor he wrote.
        Maybe they were trying to atone for winning a Pulitzer for exposing the archdiocesan cover-up for pedophile priests.

  6. dmf

     /  April 19, 2012

  7. Um.
    Idol? Check. Dick Clark from 1963? Check. Game of Thrones 2012 Political Meme? Check.

    Nathan Fillion being awesome for Emily? Check.

    Yup, it’s all there on my blog. Check it!
    anibundel.wordpress.com

    • WHAAAA MY LINK DOESN’T WORK. I AM A FAILURE AT THE INTERNET.

    • PS That Fillion/Downey thing is teh AWEsome! (And you don’t even know what kind of crush I have on Robert Downey, Jr. If they threw Jake Gyllenhaal into the conversation, I might just pass right out).

  8. Dear efgoldman – Feel free to rip Eric Cantor a new one. Our people’s survival of the Holocaust gives us the freedom to point out the assholes amongst us.

    • efgoldman

       /  April 19, 2012

      Well he is, that’s true. But I interpreted the piece as Cantor accidentally acknowledging an unpleasant truth about the GOBP caucus. The two things are not mutually exclusive.

      • chingona

         /  April 19, 2012

        There has been more than one instance – usually in the South – of Jewish GOP candidates being the target of anti-Semitic robocalls and push polls by their Christian GOP primary opponents. A common formulation is “Would you vote for a candidate who didn’t accept Jesus? Are you aware that candidate Levine does not accept Jesus?” Which has the plausible deniability of just asserting a fact. There have been more directly sinister ones as well.

        The country club anti-semitism (and of course, the John Birch anti-semitism) of the past has given way to fundamentalist Christianity as a litmus test for office.

        • koolaide

           /  April 19, 2012

          Not just the south. Palin’s crew did this kind of campaigning when she was running for mayor.

        • In 2010, in Baltimore, there were two guys running for executive of my county, one Jewish and one Catholic. I got calls from the Catholic guy’s campaign asking me if I knew his opponent lived in *Pikesville* and worked in *business* and went to *private schools*. (The Catholic guy? Ran his own business and went to private schools, but apparently that’s OK if he does it.) I told them I’d just decided to vote for the opponent. (Turns out he’s also a tool, but what can you do.)

    • chingona

       /  April 19, 2012

      I don’t care of Eric Cantor even a little bit, but I’m okay with him on this one.

      • chingona

         /  April 19, 2012

        care *for* Eric Cantor

        • efgoldman

           /  April 19, 2012

          Will you sign my petiton for an “edit” function?

          • Maybe we could raise funds for Emily to get a paid version of WordPress that supports disqus.

            • caoil

               /  April 19, 2012

              (Seconded.)
              er, as long as it’s still a site I can see, unlike bits of the Atlantic.

  9. Neocortex

     /  April 19, 2012

    Once again, I’m trying to bounce Occupy stuff off the Horde (sorry). Once again, it sort of touches on race (I tend to bring things things to the Horde because of its thoughtfulness about race). I would appreciate hearing what people think (and I realize that you don’t have a complete catalog of everything people are saying, just my summary).

    As you might know if you saw my last contribution to an open thread here, last weekend we had an incident where people from Occupy Boston’s queer/trans group were counterprotesting a rally with speakers from anti-queer hate groups, and the police roughed up several people and grabbed the throat of a genderqueer trans kid. The picture of the throat grab went viral, and people are upset about what happened.

    There are several people who have been trying to make a point that I very much respect, but something about the execution is leaving a bad taste in my mouth. They are saying [paraphrase] “What happened to Allie is bad, but let’s remember that this happens to poor people of color every day.” They’re getting at something important, that it’s ignorant and wrong to act, even without meaning to, like police violence is some new thing being directed entirely at us because we’re just that special.

    But I don’t like the (unintentional in some cases, intentional in others) characterization of the situation as “It’s tragic when it happens to privileged/white middle-class people” Syndrome. Because, um, it’s not like trans people aren’t routinely targets of police abuse. Or like they’re a privileged group for whom violence against them routinely gets excessive attention and condemnation.

    I feel like the bigger issues to get at here are:

    * Police violence doesn’t just happen to protesters, or to Occupiers. Don’t get too self-absorbed and fail to see wider issues. This is the point that the people in question are trying to make.

    * There’s intersectionality between protesters and marginalized communities, and it can affect response to protesters. It seems possibly significant and worth commenting on that the most police violence that we’ve experienced since the December raid was directed
    at a mostly-queer subset protesting anti-queer hate groups. And that an incident at that protest that was particularly egregious was directed at a trans kid.

    I think what bugs me is that when people try to make the valid and important points about race and class, they’re frequently not recognizing trans as another category of marginalization that makes people vulnerable to police violence. Allie’s not outside the broader issue that people are trying to bring the focus to, of people in certain marginalized groups being treated badly by cops.

    • As a trans person, naturally I’m annoyed. In general, I don’t think it’s ever okay to minimize anyone’s oppression. Then again, one does have to choose one’s battles and most people don’t have the bandwidth to get outraged about every bad thing that happens. I don’t know if there is any good rule about which battle to choose.

    • Oh! PS – no need to apologize for bringing Occupy stuff here. I moved away from Boston a couple years ago and like to be kept updated on what’s going on.

  10. Captain Button

     /  April 19, 2012

    Vatican Criticizes U.S. Nuns for Being Too Progressive

    Apparently America’s nuns are being way too lenient on gay rights, abortion, and women’s ordination–which is why the Vatican reprimanded and ordered disciplinary action against the largest group and most influential group of Catholic nuns in the United States on Wednesday. The other offenses that the Leadership Conference of Women Religious, which represents most of the 55,000 Catholic nuns in the United States, has, in the Vatican’s eyes, committed are “radical feminist themes incompatible with the Catholic faith” and supporting Obama’s health care overhaul.

    Renegade Nuns!

    Reminds me of the Renegade Nuns On Wheels expansion to the parody tabletop RPG Macho Women With Guns.

    (Isn’t it pathetic the way I can turn anything in a geek reference?)

    • SWNC

       /  April 19, 2012

      Darn those nuns for all their work with the sick and the poor! Can’t they focus on people’s sex lives instead?!

      (Seriously, sh*t like this is why my formerly Catholic mother goes into a spitting rage whenever the Catholic church comes up.)

    • Anything *can* be turned into a geek reference. That’s just how these things work.

    • Makovnik

       /  April 19, 2012

      It’s at once baffling and completely predictable that the Vatican’s answer to the question of what needed fixing in the Church is “the American nuns.”

    • carlos the dwarf

       /  April 19, 2012

      This seems like something of a dog-bites-man story to me: “International child-molestation conspiracy does something morally reprehensible. What it means for your weekend, tonight at 11!”

    • efgoldman

       /  April 19, 2012

      Every time I see a reference to nuns, my mind’s ear hears George Carlin’s “Sister Mary Hitler” routine.
      I saw an old newspaper photo recently of “Nun’s Day” at Fenway Park. Any nun (and in those days, they were all in full habit). Nuns got in for free, and they reserved a whole section for them. In those days the Sox didn’t draw flies, and the nuns’ section was usually the only one that was full.

  11. JHarper2

     /  April 19, 2012

    In Alexander McCall Smith’s comic episodic novel, The Unbearable Lightness of Scones there is a scene where the Glasgow Gangster, Lard O’Connor dies a sudden (natural) death (natural given the Glasgow Diet). Lard was a large man and although a gangster, had his sentimental side. The painter Angus Lordie, a friend of Lard’s had these thoughts.

    ..There was high cloud, white cloud banked up to wide expanses of blue, and Angus wondered curiously, what an artist might have ;made of this scene, Belline perhaps or Moretto. The angels would descend – well-built, strong angels – to carry Lard upwards to his rest; a man who had been undeserving in this world welcomed into the next, where human wrongs are forgiven and the heaviest become light.

  12. enstar

     /  April 19, 2012

    so, in living situation news, i just found out that i will indeed be moving in with a couple of my friends at the end of next month, out of my currently cheap but mediocre accommodations. this gives me a wonderful excuse to go ahead and buy some more new furniture, in addition to the new bookshelves. so i just used the second of my coaching checks to order a new bed, and a new dresser.

    this is the first time in my young life, ever, i have had the financial freedom to buy some new and nice things, and i gotta say that it feels kind of good. not good enough to keep indulging–the poor broke bastard in me would never let that happen–but still pretty good.

    • SWNC

       /  April 19, 2012

      Congratulations! Mr SWNC and I are in are mid-thirties and we are just now beginning to phase out our second-hand, hand-me-down furniture. It feels so luxurious to choose something because you like it, not just because it’s what you can afford.

    • helensprogeny

       /  April 19, 2012

      Ha. I was fifty before I let myself buy a brand new, never-before-sat-upon-by-anyone couch, so deeply ingrained was my student-forever mentality. To be fair though, I’ve never had much actual cash and have never wanted to go into debt for furniture.

      So congratulations on the new furniture! It is fun, isn’t it?

      • efgoldman

         /  April 19, 2012

        I bought a brand-new bachelor couch in the late 60s, from Creative Comfort in Cambridge. it was before they got trendy, and were still selling at hippie prices.
        mrs efgoldman and I bought a new sleeper sofa maybe 30 years ago, but we got it in the Sears outlet store for $500 or so off retail.
        Ten years ago, when we moved into this house, we bought a new couch at retail, for the first time. But we used housewarming gift money from my parents.

    • Congrats! I still feel like my double bed, bought brand new several years ago, is a luxury.

  13. Dex

     /  April 19, 2012

    Whatever racial identity you have, do you and your different-raced friends and family joke openly about race?

    [Actual conversation in our household over Christmas:
    Wife: Do you like multi-colored lights on the tree, or just plain white ones?
    Me: Oh, white ones by far.
    Wife: Of course you do. BECAUSE YOU’RE RACIST!!!!!!!!
    Me: (mouth drops open; wife starts laughing) I have to admit, I didn’t see that coming.]

    Anyway. Friends of ours came to visit from Canada last weekend. The husband is a biotech exec and manages a bunch of people. As it turns out, every single person on his team is either Indian or Indo-Canadian. Although there have been a couple of departures of late, those who left ended up getting replaced by other Indian folk. He’s white, but his last name is, um, Brown. So everyone on his team refers to themselves as Team Brown. They even put their fists in the middle when a meeting is over and yell, “TEAM BROWN. BREAK!”

    • stephen matlock

       /  April 19, 2012

      I … uh… welllll…

    • efgoldman

       /  April 19, 2012

      When I was in college (63-68) my fraternity brothers an I always did that kind of thing among ourselves. We were a heterogeneous group, and completely disrespectful, equal-opportunity jokers.
      Nowadays they’d probably throw us off the campus.

    • carlos the dwarf

       /  April 19, 2012

      Race? no. Ethnicity? All. The. Damn. Time. If I got paid every time I made a Jew joke, I’d be Donald Trumpowitz by now.

      • Dex

         /  April 19, 2012

        Actually, I believe you’re responsible for one of my all-time favorite quips by the Horde. I believe someone commented something to the effect that Carlos the Dwarf doesn’t sound Jewish and I’m pretty sure that you commented something to the effect that it had been shortened from Dwarfowitz at Ellis Island. (I really hope that isn’t a false memory)

      • aaron singer

         /  April 19, 2012

        I am Ashkenazi Jewish, and my sister’s fiance is African-American. They go back and forth with jokes every now and then.

    • koolaide

       /  April 19, 2012

      My bil is Mexican and my blood family is white. There are many jokes, some race based like the xmas light story you shared and others nationality based. For example, my sister claims that her (lifelong) predilection to lateness is b/c she’s on Latino Time now.

    • Race, no. But the Jewish and GLBT jokes flow freely. Possibly because it’s the Jews and the gays making the jokes.

    • chingona

       /  April 19, 2012

      We have a friend who is Apache, and there is a lot of pretty indelicate humor between us (my husband and I) and him and his wife (who is white). There’s also a fair amount of Jew jokes between my husband and I and some other intermarried couples we’re friends with. My BIL, though, has crossed the line several times on the Jew thing. Or, it’s not so much that he went too far, but there isn’t the baseline trust to know 100 percent certainty that he’s just joking.

    • David L

       /  April 19, 2012

      In pretty much all of these situations (race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, whatever) I let the less-privileged person make the jokes if I’m on the side of privilege, but I do certainly laugh when they come up.

    • efgoldman

       /  April 19, 2012

      I also have a good friend at work who was thrown out of Catholic seminary for being too openly gay. He is also a recovering alcoholic. We give it to each other pretty good.

    • enstar

       /  April 19, 2012

      all the time, but seldom at anyone’s expense but my own.

      whoever said white people don’t dance, are totally wrong. every time we start talking about race, we dance the hell around the serious issues.

    • That.is.AWESOME.

    • We had a running joke for a while at work, since the team was two Caucasians (one German-ish, one Austrian-ish) and a Japanese-American, we called ourselves the Axis. For a while we were trying to recruit an Italian with limited success.

      Otherwise, we stick to the basic rule: you can only make fun of them if you are one.

      • Dex

         /  April 19, 2012

        Speaking of the latter, one of my wife’s favorite things to do is to watch me squirm as my Chinese MIL goes on long, not-funny, anti-Chinese [sic] rants. I used to protest, but now I just sit there, wanting to interject about stereotyping, immigration and stuff, but I don’t. Before starting each rant, my MIL now looks pointedly at me and says: “I know it’s not nice to say, but those Chinese….”

        It’s like I feel her right to criticize her own triumphs over my desire to combat stereotyping.

    • osbenz

       /  April 19, 2012

      Yeah, from time to time. I (white guy) stray a good bit from stereotype so I get some cheap chuckles by speaking in a faux-bourgeois manner. Essentialism is our trope.

    • Darth Thulhu

       /  April 19, 2012

      “Do you and your differently raced friends joke openly about race?”

      Yes. But.

      This pretty much only happens at a very well established board/card gaming group, and with other very-longterm friends. The most common theme is for someone of a relevant ethnicity to call someone “Racist” or ask “Why is it always about race with you?” when doing something that obviously has nothing at all to do with race.

      Examples:
      1) Magic the Gathering
      Player 1: I equip Moonsilver Spear on Black Knight.
      Player 2 (Black dude): Why is it always about racial stereotypes with you?

      2) Cosmic Encounter (with 8 player colors of white, black, and the six rainbow colors).
      Player 1 (Czech): I want to be Green.
      Player 2 (Irish): Racist. I’ll be Red.
      Player 3 (Tohono): Racist. Yellow.
      Player 4 (Korean): Racist. Black.
      Player 5 (Yoruban): Racist. White.
      Player 1 (Czech): Super-Racist.

      General rule is for the faux-accuser to be of the relevant demographic to be faux-offended by the faux-offense.

  14. stephen matlock

     /  April 19, 2012

    So – after an unpleasant intersection of liquid nitrogen with skin tags, the doctor told me I have to cut out all white foods. My first response was, “Well, there goes Whole Foods,” but he meant white sugar, flour, rice, potatoes – you know the drill.

    On the plus, plus, plus side – I have to (HAVE TO!) eat more fatty fish, especially sardines, salmon, and other delightfully oily fish. It’s like being told you can’t have dried-out rice cakes anymore but now you can have delicious chocolate pudding every day.

    • caoil

       /  April 19, 2012

      Am I understanding correctly, that there’s some kind of link between skin tag formation and white foods? This I have not been told before.

      • stephen matlock

         /  April 19, 2012

        No. It was just his chance for the Lecture About Eating Right, Not White.

        • socioprof

           /  April 19, 2012

          Does your doctor not believe the words of Chris Rock when he declares that, “All White is All Right”?

          • stephen matlock

             /  April 19, 2012

            I would be totally surprised if my doctor knew who Chris Rock was.

        • caoil

           /  April 19, 2012

          Ah! Okay. I was worried there for a bit…

    • SWNC

       /  April 19, 2012

      Sweet potatoes and brown rice are far tastier than their white counterparts, in my opinion.
      (And I wish someone would tell me to eat more oily fish!)

    • mmm, mackerel.

  15. koolaide

     /  April 19, 2012

    Bo Ryan only made himself look worse in his Mike&Mike interview. Those guys are a softball interview, usually. Ryan crashed and burned.

    • efgoldman

       /  April 19, 2012

      I’ll hazard a guess that a lot of the student lounge has no idea what this is about. (I do, but I didn’t see the interview.)

      • koolaide

         /  April 19, 2012

        Ah. Right, my bad. Bo Ryan = head men’s basketball coach at Wisconsin. A player wants to transfer. While athletic scholarships are for 1 year (renewable, obvs) at a time, there are some rules governing student-athletes transfering to different schools. One of those rules requires men’s bball players to sit a season (redshirt).

        Another rule allows the coach to limit the schools a player can go to and receive an athletic scholarship. In reality, that generally gets limited to schools in the same conference. Ryan decided to list all Big10 schools, all ACC schools, plus some others. There is an appeal process and the player has appealed.

        The extensive list makes (imo) Ryan look vindictive. Ryan is holding the “this is the rule and the player can appeal” line. Even coaches that try and restrict transfers beyond conference teams keep the list smaller than what Ryan did–and most of those cite some sort of “I think there was tampering” type excuse. Ryan, imo, comes across as being an asshat here b/c he’s mad at the player for A) transferring and B) not talking to him face to face about it but calling him on the phone.

        • scone

           /  April 19, 2012

          I don’t always agree with Seth Davis, but he’s doing the lord’s work on this issue. I didn’t hear Mike & Mike, but saw Davis responding on twitter.

          I read a great column by Dan Wetzel, I think, pointing out the hypocrisy of the NCAA insisting on treating players like “students” when talking about paying players, and like contractually bound employees when it comes to transfers.

          • koolaide

             /  April 19, 2012

            I normally avoid all things Seth Davis, if possible. It’s not that I mind Dukies in sports media (no problem w/ Beau Dure or Jay Bilas) I just mind Davis. Since you recommended him, I’ll check out his feed.

            Players have pretty much zero leverage beyond their initial recruiting & letter of intent signing. They can transfer but lose a year. Coaches can not renew scholarships w/ ease and coaches can jump from team to team.

            • scone

               /  April 19, 2012

              Yeah, Seth has been on the forefront of this issue – he was also sounding the alarm about Martelli.

              • koolaide

                 /  April 19, 2012

                Ah, yes, Martelli. That was pretty crappy, too.

          • efgoldman

             /  April 19, 2012

            Joe Nocera at NY Times has a continuing series of columns/posts about how evil the NCAA is to the kids. I doubt the NCAA is paying attention.

          • taylor16

             /  April 19, 2012

            Dan Wetzel, Dave Zirin and Joe Nocera are the best people to read if you’re looking for critical stuff about the NCAA. They’re all doing great work.

            • koolaide

               /  April 19, 2012

              Agreed. Jay Bilas (hated Dukie though he may be) is also critical of NCAA in his work. When he’s not quoting Young Jeezy.

  16. helensprogeny

     /  April 19, 2012

    So, my contribution to today’s lofty conversation:

    If I never had to shave my legs again, it would be too soon. Hate. Really hate.

    • efgoldman

       /  April 19, 2012

      Thank you for sharing.

      • helensprogeny

         /  April 19, 2012

        Friend, you do not EVEN want to know.

    • Ever listen to Keb’Mo? He did a song in which he told his wife she’d never have to shave her legs for him. Hilarious.

      • helensprogeny

         /  April 19, 2012

        My partner is a very, very patient and understanding man. Very. I go for large portions of the year unshorn and he suffers in admirable silence. But it’s threatening to be 100 degrees this weekend, shorts weather is undeniably upon us here in the SW and some social decorum is required. I do sometimes say Fuck it even in shorts, but I’m feeling self-conscious about the hirsute condition of my legs today. Shaving will occur. But I Will. Not. Enjoy.

        • taylor16

           /  April 19, 2012

          Awww, I’m sorry. I wish I could loan you my skin for a day. I’m one of those people who never gets razor burn or cuts herself. I can shave my legs completely dry and never see so much as a single red bump. It’s always been like that. I don’t shave religiously or anything, but it’s really never been an issue for me.

          I’m done bragging, but I had to brag for a minute. I never thought to appreciate my leg skin before, but now I am…😀

          • Bookwoman

             /  April 19, 2012

            My many years of ingrown leg hairs hate you, but not really. Brag away!

          • R_Bargis

             /  April 19, 2012

            Same here – in fact I always shave dry because the few times I’ve cut myself have been when I used shaving cream. Never thought to appreciate it either… now I do.

          • scone

             /  April 19, 2012

            Me three. For the longest time I didn’t even understand what razor burn was. There was a brief period where I used shaving cream just so I could see where I had shaved (like helensprogeny, I can’t see for shit in the shower), but I never remembered to buy more, so I went back to my old standard of soap. I can also shave dry, but prefer to get it over with in the shower.

          • koolaide

             /  April 19, 2012

            I’ve now got razor burn just from reading about the three of you dry shaving.

          • helensprogeny

             /  April 19, 2012

            Privilege sometimes comes in strange packages. Enjoy it when and where you can! And I’m glad *somebody* out there can shave dry and get away with it.🙂

    • koolaide

       /  April 19, 2012

      Is there a requirement that you shave your legs?

      • helensprogeny

         /  April 19, 2012

        No. But see my longer reply above.

        • koolaide

           /  April 19, 2012

          gotcha. and I was kinda joking.

          I, too, shave sporadically. Recently I’ve discovered that clippers (of the sort likely used at the Hair Cuttery) work really well and (most importantly) quickly when using a razor & shaving cream would take all freaking day.

          • helensprogeny

             /  April 19, 2012

            OMG, I think you’ve just totally changed my life! I’ve never even considered an electric razor, let alone hair clippers. Imma try that for sure.

            Part of the issue for me is that I have really bad eyes and can’t fucking *see* anything in the shower. So shaving becomes an even bigger production. Then there are the ingrown hairs that develop, and the razor rash – and believe me, I’ve tried EVERYTHING to remedy both those maladies. Hair clippers might just do the trick. Thank you! (See, I knew the Horde was the right place to take this gripe!)

            • koolaide

               /  April 19, 2012

              In my (somewhat limited) experience, the clippers don’t get the legs totally smooth but they definitely make them “presentable” to folks who might unshaven legs the side-eye.

              (at the risk of oversharing…)
              I discovered clippers worked when I was visiting my parents’ house a couple of months ago. I hadn’t shaved my legs in like 5 months but had “an event” and didn’t really want to wear pants. I was standing in their bathroom pressed for time, saw my dad’s clippers on the counter and a light blub went off….

              • koolaide

                 /  April 19, 2012

                ergh. edit button. “might GIVE unshaven legs the side-eye”

              • helensprogeny

                 /  April 19, 2012

                Trust me, presentable is all I ever aim for, even with a razor. I am very excited about the prospect of clippers.

          • Yup. I usually do that when I haven’t shaved my face in a week or so, because trying to shave that much scruff directly usually results in unhappiness all around.

          • David L

             /  April 19, 2012

            Not-so-shameful confession time: During the warm weather months, I use the same clippers on the same setting for both my beard and my head. (In colder months, I go with a longer guard on my head.)

            • r_bargis

               /  April 19, 2012

              I do the same thing for an older friend with a beard who’s mostly bald. I’m kind of envious – it seems very efficient and he really only has to do it once a month, and just shave off the stubble in between haircuts.

    • I literally only just realized for the first time a couple days ago that people who get bikini waxes have to let someone put wax on their bikini area. I was gobsmacked. (Yeah, I feel like it’s related to the leg-shaving problem.)

      • helensprogeny

         /  April 19, 2012

        Oh, definitely related. And the less said about my bikini area the better. Though it has been some years since I’ve worn an actual bikini, my young and slender days being in my dim past.

      • Bookwoman

         /  April 19, 2012

        I do not understand the whole bikini waxing thing. Just the thought of it makes me cringe. And why do young women these days want to look like porn stars? This befuddles me.

        One of the good things about menopause is that large swathes of leg hair disappear (at least on me it has), and what’s left grows much more slowly.

        • chingona

           /  April 19, 2012

          Well, bikini waxing runs the gamut from just cleaning up along the exposed area to taking everything off.

          If you’re someone whose hair grows back quickly and/or is prone to unattractive razor burn, getting the stuff outside the bathing suit taken care of through waxing means you can go to the pool/beach every day for a couple weeks without constantly worrying about it.

          Not that I know anything about it. Ahem.

          • R_Bargis

             /  April 19, 2012

            This is one of several reasons why I have given up on women’s swimsuits and wear male youth board shorts or a paddleboarding skort, and a rashguard.

            • chingona

               /  April 19, 2012

              I’m about this close to going that direction. I kind of hate not being able to just say yes and grab some towels when we get invited swimming.

              • R_Bargis

                 /  April 19, 2012

                I highly, highly recommend getting a skort or board shorts. Athleta has some seriously cute ones ( http://athleta.gap.com/browse/category.do?cid=54486 ), as does REI ( http://www.rei.com/search?cat=4500268&cat=4790514&jxGender=Women%27s&hist=cat%2C4500268%3APaddling+Clothing^cat%2C4790514%3APaddling+Shorts^jxGender%2CWomen%27s ) but if you’re on a budget try the men’s swimwear section of Target/Kohl’s/etc – shorter bottoms are back in style and they can come in pretty cute colors (also, men’s swimsuit bottoms come with pockets. POCKETS!).

                Skin tight, extremely revealing clothing isn’t flattering or practical on many women, including me, so I’d really rather swim naked. Alas, that’s rarely an option in the US, so I kind of end up looking like I’m a modest Christian instead.

                • chingona

                   /  April 19, 2012

                  Ha! I remember looking at the Athleta website last year and thinking “When I have some money, I’m totally getting one of these.” But my birthday is in the fall, so by the time I got some extra money, I bought a courderoy shirt dress instead. Whoops.

                • taylor16

                   /  April 19, 2012

                  Oh my gosh … I am so going to splurge once I get my first paycheck with my new raise and buy that brown and pink flowered print one on the Athleta site. That would perfectly match my favorite suit!

                  I don’t mind wearing actual bikini bottoms (after a quick bikini line shave) when I’m physically in the water or if I decide to lay out in the backyard by myself or something (and have shorts near me that I can throw on). But I am just really never okay with walking around with bikini bottoms on at a beach or something like that. I’d be embarrassed to walk around in my underwear in public – why is underwear made of different fabric okay? Ugh.

                  • R_Bargis

                     /  April 19, 2012

                    I do my weight lifting in a skirt or skort for similar reasons – work-out shorts just feel really revealing. I’ll be nude, or I’ll be dressed, but I’ll have none of this in-between underwear business.

                • SWNC

                   /  April 19, 2012

                  Oh, God, I wish non-skeevy nude beaches were an option here. I don’t look half-bad naked. But a swimsuit is far less flattering than my whole nekkid self.

                  • R_Bargis

                     /  April 19, 2012

                    This. 100%. I look fabulous naked (everyone looks fabulous naked), but in a skintight swimsuit I look decidedly prepubescent in a way that makes me and my spouse uncomfortable.

                    Mr Knight and I make use of an out-of-the-way swimming hole when we can, but I really want to try the whole ‘nudist resort’ thing.

              • Bookwoman

                 /  April 19, 2012

                You can also find swimsuits that have a small piece of fabric that covers the front. These used to look very matronly, but there are now lots of much nicer options (Lands’ End is one place to look).

                • chingona

                   /  April 19, 2012

                  I haven’t been quite ready for that.

            • koolaide

               /  April 19, 2012

              I’ve also been thinking about going w/ boy shorts or board shorts for this summer. I think this discussion confirms my decision…

              (as does the fact that I’ve gain far too much weight this year for my other swim suits. sigh.)

          • Bookwoman

             /  April 19, 2012

            Yeah, I get that. But…ow. Plus I would have such terrible ingrown hairs you don’t even wanna know.

      • koolaide

         /  April 19, 2012

        yeah. just not going to happen. I don’t even pull band-aides on my arm off quickly.

      • Here is my friend’s delightful story of her waxing experience, analogized to the torture scene in Princess Bride:

        http://theblissquest.com/blog/2009/04/08/this-is-for-posterity-so-please-be-honest/

      • snailspace

         /  April 19, 2012

        … which is why beard trimmers/clippers, recommended above for legs, are useful for other areas, too. No waxing for me, please. But a close crop? Sure.

  17. chingona

     /  April 19, 2012

    Saw this tweet: Just saw a listing for “Jewish Chabad Lubavitch” – is there some *other* kind of Chabad that I’m unaware of?

    Wanted to tweet back at you, but my twitter account is work-related. The Jewish Chabad is the Chabad that doesn’t think the Rebbe’s coming back.

    • BOOM!

      BWAhahahahahahahahahahahaha!!

      (And all the non-Jewy Jews scratch their heads in befuddlement).

  18. corkingiron

     /  April 19, 2012

    In case you didn’t see this – and in keeping with TNC’s post re: progress, yesterday.

    http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2012/04/picture-of-the-day-obama-sits-on-the-rosa-parks-bus/256112/

    • stephen matlock

       /  April 19, 2012

      Really liked this.

      And gob-smackingly obvious: IT’S THE G***DAMN PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, sitting where Rosa Parks once sat, AND HE’S BLACK.

      I don’t think you could write this in a book without people saying “You’re just making this up.”

      This isn’t really a “Yay U.S.A.!” moment, because it would have been better to never have the need for that bus in a museum – but yeah, yay U.S.A. Sometimes we do get it right, albeit slowly, and after trying every other solution first.

      • corkingiron

         /  April 19, 2012

        I kind of view it as a “Yay Homo Sapiens” kind of thing…along the lines of “Rosa Parks is the Rosa Parks of the Zulu….or the Canadians.”

        • stephen matlock

           /  April 19, 2012

          That’s a good point. We do advance, it seems. Just slowly.

          Just hard to think what’s going through his head. Leader of the free world, and his own country doubts he’s born here.

    • I saw it, and ever once and awhile, I just wonder how he and his wife even begin to process these things. Like on MLK day, I remember thinking “What’s it like, being Michelle Obama, and waking up in the White House on this day?”

    • taylor16

       /  April 19, 2012

      I love that photo. For historical reasons, because … wow. But also, I got married at that museum!! And while touring it to check out the venue, my husband and I walked all around and looked at everything and took some time on the bus. Might have even sat in the same exact spot while I sort of looked around and thought about everything the Civil Rights activitsts had gone through.

      And now, the president is there. Just awesome. I think I’m gonna have to get a copy of that photo.

    • helensprogeny

       /  April 19, 2012

      Goosebumps of joy.

  19. efgoldman

     /  April 19, 2012

    mrs efgoldman is a life member Girl Scout.
    Our local council has invited her to an awards dinner to receive her 50 year pin.
    So she went down in the basement and dug out the vintage green shirtwaist dress. It may have been hers, it may have been her mom’s (with four daughters, Mom was damned sure going to be a GS leader).
    The dress fits. I think she should wear it.
    Did I mention that she lost well over a hundred pounds in the last five years? From a size 22 to a size 10-12.

    • helensprogeny

       /  April 19, 2012

      A thousand congratulations to mrs. ef on all counts! An inspiration in every way.

      • efgoldman

         /  April 19, 2012

        She doesn’t shave her legs for eight months a year, either.

        • helensprogeny

           /  April 19, 2012

          Sisterhood! (Though I suspect shaving might be happening before she puts on that dress, right?)

    • SWNC

       /  April 19, 2012

      That is awesome. She should absolutely wear the dress!

    • Bookwoman

       /  April 19, 2012

      Wow – that’s very impressive. Of course she should wear it!

    • socioprof

       /  April 19, 2012

      Wow. How awesome.

    • koolaide

       /  April 19, 2012

      Awesomeness and congrats to your wife for both accomplishments.

      (and now I skulk off since I can barely fit the pants from last year…forget about 15 yrs ago)

      • helensprogeny

         /  April 19, 2012

        Oh, my dear, you and me both. It has been an expansive year. Ugh.

        • Oh boy do I hear that.

          The upside of working from home: I actually eat less.

          The downside of working from home: I move about 15 feet for my commute, and get up precious little otherwise. And what I do eat tends to be crap.

          I either need to get up earlier and start working out, or buy all new pants. And I just bought new pants last year so that ain’t happening. *sigh*

          • helensprogeny

             /  April 19, 2012

            If I worked at home, I’d probably literally never get out of my pajamas. One reason I’ve kept doing massage for so long is that it’s spectacular exercise and burns a lot of calories. Which is just as well, because any time I’m not massaging, you’re likely to find me on my couch.

            I was just thinking about your new job this morning and wondering how you’re liking it. Hope it’s going well.

    • efgoldman

       /  April 19, 2012

      Enh. What else is new?

      • dmf

         /  April 19, 2012

        that this comes from a bishop, many folks are still in denial about how backwards the RCC really is and how they have invested themselves into the American political sphere. just as the right attacks righteous nuns people on the left use them to defend this deeply regressive institution. I hope that someday the liberal catholics will start another church in the democratic mores of the US.

        • efgoldman

           /  April 19, 2012

          Anyone who reads Mr. Pierce regularly http://www.esquire.com/blogs/politics/ can find out all they need to know.
          And lo and behold, i went over there to get the link, and found his take just posted.

          The emboldened Clan of the Red Beanie is at it again. Recognizing that our national attention span is that of the average flea, and that its recent history as an international conspiracy to obstruct justice has faded enough for them to start acting tough again, the Clan has decided to come after American nuns. And it should come as no surprise that the latest clerical — and, this time anyway, thankfully, only metaphorical — dick-waving has to do with the Clan’s recent mendacious finagling in domestic politics:

          Wish I could write like that.
          http://www.esquire.com/blogs/politics/Nuns_On_The_Run

          • dave in texas

             /  April 19, 2012

            You and me both. The man’s a national treasure.

            • efgoldman

               /  April 19, 2012

              The man’s a national treasure
              And he started his career as the sports guy on one of Boston’s alt.weeklies. Lupica started at the same one. Writing sports there was fun, because they could quote the athletes verbatim. One of their favorites was Luis Tiant, who apparently answered every question with “bool-CHEAT!”

  20. stephen matlock

     /  April 19, 2012

    w/r/t DMF (above)
    http://video.msnbc.msn.com/the-daily-rundown/47085735/#47085735

    Lugar is “too moderate” for the GOP. Might lose his job in the primary. RICHARD LUGAR.

    • dmf

       /  April 19, 2012

      yeah this is pretty scary, I’m really beginning to wonder if our country can hold together in any meaningful way at the level of the fed govt. or if we are too divided to survive life after the WW2 economic bubble.

    • taylor16

       /  April 19, 2012

      Yeah. Husband and I will be voting in the primary in two weeks. I don’t ever vote Republicans and I certainly don’t agree with Lugar on much … but COME ON.

      • dmf

         /  April 19, 2012

        if the court strikes down health-care we are likely in for a long dark haul into the eternal campaign, talk about tyranny of the means…

        • taylor16

           /  April 19, 2012

          I cannot even think about the possibility that the SC will strike down health care.

          Yes, I realize it’s a distinct possibility. But I can’t even *think* about it, because I basically freeze up with horror at what it will do to people and to our political and health care system.

          • dmf

             /  April 19, 2012

            me too, literally hurts my head and heart but I think we need to be prepared to react I’m just at a loss as to what that could really mean, where is absurdbeats when we need a political philosopher with her boots on the ground?

      • efgoldman

         /  April 19, 2012

        Is there a viable Dem candidate, or is this GOBP primary=the next senator?

        • taylor16

           /  April 19, 2012

          I’m completely spitballing here … but I think that it’s a GOP seat either way. If the Tea Party candidate wins then a Dem could probably pick off a higher percentage than the 15% or so that usually swing their way when Lugar’s up for reelection.

          But I don’t see Dems picking up the seat either way. We haven’t gotten the full brunt of the Tea Party horror show here in Indiana (like, say, Wisconsin), so I don’t think enough people would get fired up enough to switch parties.

          So all things considered, I’m rooting hard for Lugar to pull it off.

    • Already baited, tweeted, boggled at, the whole nine!

      And yes: Holy crow. To be a fly on the inside of his cranium. Or heart.

  21. Levon Helms passed today. He was 71.

    • aaron singer

       /  April 19, 2012

      What a legend. The Band was my day’s favorite music group of all time.

      I think it was in the OTAN yesterday that someone posted a great article on him by Charles Pierce.

      http://www.esquire.com/blogs/politics/levon-helm-america-8173059

      • dmf

         /  April 19, 2012

        seeing the last waltz at a college theatre in my teen years was a really powerful happening in the shaping of my psyche.

        • aaron singer

           /  April 19, 2012

          Such a great film, though I was left wanting to hear more stories of Levon Helm growing up in Arkansas.

  22. caoil

     /  April 19, 2012

    Oh – Emily – I tweeted this last night for you, but you had perhaps already logged out. I read it the other day, and thought it was well done, but not quiiiite as good as your ‘like a girl’ post.

    • I thought I tweeted back at you about that! But I can see now that I didn’t. Apparently this “tweeting in my head” thing doesn’t work.

      A) Thank you for your kindness and loyalty!

      B) I haven’t had a chance to read it yet, but I saw some reference to it elsewhere (Skepchick, I think?) and thought “Hey! That’s my idea!” and had to kind of talk myself down from annoyance that sometimes people have the same idea. HUBRIS.

      C) Off to read it now!

  23. I’m blown away how bad my sugar cravings are. I think quitting smoking may have been easier.

    • David L

       /  April 19, 2012

      Paleo writer, blogger, etc. Robb Wolf says he had a client who said that kicking a crack habit was less difficult than kicking a sugar habit.

      • That’s not helpful. Nor is it solving my fantasies of an Ice Cream Twix Bar.

        • David L

           /  April 19, 2012

          It was meant as a statement of sympathy.

          But sympathy is not exactly a perfect substitute for ice cream.

    • caoil

       /  April 19, 2012

      I think I was two weeks into my Clean program before I stopped wanting ALL THE CHOCOLATE THINGS. I am sending you what internal strength I can.

      • This is sugar+dairy cravings, but I am praying that this time next week, they will be slowly diminishing.

        • caoil

           /  April 19, 2012

          Are you allowed avocados and cocoa powder? If so, I can give you a weird yet effective recipe for “chocolate pudding”. Unless that wouldn’t help because it would make you want more things.

    • helensprogeny

       /  April 19, 2012

      I found hypnosis to be incredibly effective in helping me stave off the nicotine withdrawal and cravings long enough to quit smoking. I have not yet been committed enough to quit sugar, let alone dairy. My hat’s off to you, quitting them both at the same time. Sending you strength.

      Also, if you’re allowed fruit, the natural sugars in fruit can help take the edge off. Not the same thing as the actual, real, refined thing, but better than naked suffering.

  24. Holy crap, I’m already back with another musician obituary, this time from my era. http://music.yahoo.com/news/men-member-found-dead-123520587.html
    Men At Work was my first musical obsession and I had a full-blown crush on Greg Ham.

  25. efgoldman

     /  April 19, 2012

    Is there anybody who’s not flogging stuff on the toobz? Yes, I’m pretty sure ths is real. (h/t Balko)
    http://www.cafepress.com/kfashop

    • Bookwoman

       /  April 19, 2012

      I love that many of the items are labeled “Propaganda”. At least they’re honest.

    • helensprogeny

       /  April 19, 2012

      That is hilarious!

  26. stephen matlock

     /  April 19, 2012

    OK. Finished latest edit round on book. Cut about 250 words or so. Still need to work on troublesome first chapter. Going down for another dive.

  27. R_Bargis

     /  April 19, 2012

    The horn of the ancient SUV across the street has gone crazy like the bus in Little Miss Sunshine and is going off at random intervals (BEEEEEEEEEEP BEEP BEEP BEE (long silence) BEE (long silence) BEEEP BEEP BEEP BEEEEEP (pause) BEEP &cet), which is getting all the dogs in the neighborhood going. I have heard most of the front doors of the houses around me open and close as people stuck their heads out, and the inquisitive little old ladies and men on the block have made their rounds to check on things. Ah, life in a quiet street.

    Tuesday night was bulk trash night, which meant wandering around the city streets in the dark picking through junk. When the weather’s good it’s a sociable evening – a lot of people are out ‘shopping’ and stop to chat, people put notes on what works and what doesn’t, and neighbors sit on their porches with a beer and chat with the people who stop by. I got 10 cut glass drawer pulls off a board, some hinges, and a pile of 2x4s.

    The aforementioned inquisitive little old people have decided that me and the spouse are acceptable by virtue of taking strolls while nicely dressed and having a garden, and now say hello to us instead of regarding us with suspicion as darn young people who will throw loud parties and rough up the neighborhood.

    • Ian

       /  April 19, 2012

      Our neighborhood is just a handful of big (10-40 acres) lots on an unmaintained gravel dead end in a spruce bog. The public trails run through here, so there are a few mushers in the neighborhood, including my wife. We rent, but we’re hoping to buy the place next door. One of our neighbors has taken it upon himself to preserve the character of the neighborhood. The danger of these big lots is that somebody will put in a bunch of rental cabins on one of them. One person does that and the traffic and noise will increase tenfold, we’ll be towing stuck cars out of the ditch all winter, and the animals will move deeper into the woods. So this guy is buying lots as they go on the market, just to keep them down to one dwelling. Normal guy, normal income, now owns something like 80 acres just two miles from the university. The time will come when this guy will find himself faced with considerable temptation.

      • R_Bargis

         /  April 19, 2012

        pheeeeew. I hope he can resist temptation.

    • efgoldman

       /  April 19, 2012

      …and now say hello to us instead of regarding us with suspicion as darn young people …
      But you do stay off their lawns, right?

      • R_Bargis

         /  April 19, 2012

        There are no lawns on my block, just porches (all but 4 or 5 houses on my block have a porch – sitting on your porch is Serious Neighborly Business) and sidewalk. Some people have a narrow strip of flowerbed between their porch and the sidewalk. But we stay off them.

    • SWNC

       /  April 19, 2012

      I remember when we got a similar blessing from the older people on our block. Once they saw us doing yardwork and planting a garden, we were okay–unlike the frat boys who’d rented the house prior to us buying it. The ultimate seal of approval came when I shoveled our elderly across-the-street neighbor’s walk after the first snowfall. It was kind of funny and very sweet.

      • R_Bargis

         /  April 19, 2012

        The spouse and I are looking forward to shoveling out all our elderly neighbors. We were kind of disappointed we didn’t get to do it this winter, actually – it’s a great way to meet people.

    • helensprogeny

       /  April 19, 2012

      SUV notwithstanding, this sounds like an awesome neighborhood. My apartment complex is similar in that lots of swapping goes on. Small things always go out on the bench by the mailboxes before they’re offered to Goodwill. Larger things go out beside the dumpsters. It’s a lovely system which seems to work quite well.

      • R_Bargis

         /  April 19, 2012

        Four hours later the short-circuited SUV (which has a parking sticker for this neighborhood, so it’s not a random person) is still going off from time to time. Everyone within a two block radius has walked over to investigate, offer their opinion, shake the car, and confer with the various people sitting on their porches to watch the hubub, and the general conclusion is that the car will be towed soon.

        Your apartment complex sounds nice. Swapping is something I like a lot.

        Our last place was on the other side of the historic district on a block that was mostly rentals and vacant townhouses and there wasn’t much of a sense of community. Moving over here (a ten minute walk away) has been like moving to a completely different town.

  28. wearyvoter

     /  April 19, 2012

    This might be better on the remembrance thread, but I thought I’d share it here. We have a gentleman in our area who was part of the Kindertransport back in WWII. Link is here: http://will.illinois.edu/news/story/kindertransport120419/