Open thread for the many and the few.

It’s yours, good people.

Standard FYI clause: I generally wait about 2 hours after Ta-Nehisi would typically open a thread (roughly noon, EST, back when such a thing was typical…!), and if none is forthcoming, I put one up here.

128 Comments

  1. Lizzou

     /  July 12, 2012

    So…. went to the opera yesterday with the MIL. Who knew you could turn “Carmen” into a titty dance show? I do now!

    Btw, is it titty or tittie?

    • BOOBS.

    • “Exotic” is the politically correct term.

      • chingona

         /  July 12, 2012

        “Adult.”

      • Lizzou

         /  July 12, 2012

        It was in the official opera house of the 2nd largest city in France, billed as the opera “Carmen.” If I wanted exotic dancing, I would have gone elsewhere. Actually, it got to the point where I was laughing cause they were ingenious in working nakey dances into the plot…

        • efgoldman

           /  July 12, 2012

          But if I were going to organize a strip club which used classical music (high class and like that), the Habanera is one of the first selections I’d use.
          Bachanalle from <Sampson & Delilah, also too.
          Hey, fun game. Anyone else want to play? Gotta’ be classical, at least sort of….

          • Lizzou

             /  July 12, 2012

            Well, HELLO – the cancan🙂 That’s Offenbach, right?

          • dave in texas

             /  July 12, 2012

            Maybe Rossini’s Thieving Magpie?

            • efgoldman

               /  July 12, 2012

              Do you mean the plot (which I don’t know) or the music? The music is kind of heavyhanded for the stated purpose. Barber of Seville might be better.

              • dave in texas

                 /  July 13, 2012

                Sorry, that was kinda vague, wasn’t it?
                I was referring to the song from the show that’s on the Clockwork Orange soundtrack.

    • efgoldman

       /  July 12, 2012

      Saw a Met production of Macbeth in the 80s. The three witches wuz nekkid in one scene.

    • I believe it’s spelled “tittay”.

  2. GAH.
    No, really, I don’t have much more intelligent discourse than that.

    • Oh there are things on my blog.
      Consider them flogged.
      http://anibundel.wordpress.com/

      Now pardon me while I have a small meltdown in the corner about how this day is going.

      • efgoldman

         /  July 12, 2012

        Melt on me. I’ve been blessed today with two, from different quarters. What’s one more? Melt away.
        Homeward i go.

        • Today is GAAAAAAH.

          No really–somehow in posting the job listing for the PORTFOLIO MANAGER being hired by the CFO, i swapped the boxes as i entered the data and now the front page of the affordable housing report announces in huge letters that we are hiring a new CFO.

          It’s a really good thing my boss thinks this is hilarious, and is getting a huge kick out of people calling him asking where he’s moving on to.

          and that does even get into the massive amount of cryptic postie notes the one who is Not My Boss left all over my desk last night on her way out the door to vacation for the next week and a half.

          I swear if i didn’t have an intern to abuse my life would suck right now.

    • Bob Jones' Neighbor

       /  July 12, 2012

      I’m with you!

  3. still waiting for a day and time to interview for a library job next week…

    • caoil

       /  July 12, 2012

      More crossed fingers!

    • efgoldman

       /  July 12, 2012

      How’s funding holding up in your ridiculous state? Or is this other than a public library?

      • It’s a private university. Catholic-run. I hope they don’t mind Unitarians working there…

        • efgoldman

           /  July 12, 2012

          They won’t want to pay for your birth control!
          (But the blue pills? Sure, why not?

          • Captain_Button

             /  July 12, 2012

            “You take the blue pill, the story ends, you wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the red pill, you stay in Wonderland, and I show you how deep the rabbit hole goes.”
            — Morpheus, The Matrix

    • koolaide

       /  July 12, 2012

      Sneding positive thoughts your way!

  4. Yesterday I posted a piece reviewing Barbadillo Solear Manzanilla sherry. It’s really savory and not sweet at all. Which interestingly pairs with tequila rather well.

    http://cocktailchem.blogspot.com/2012/07/sherry-review-barbadillo-solear.html

    On a different note, does anyone have a rec. for a decent but not expensive sauternes? I’d like to try all of the wines that get used to finishing whisky to get a sense of what they’re contributing.

    • CitizenE

       /  July 12, 2012

      Even if the sauternes is just decent, drink it.

      • That’s the plan. TJ’s has some half bottles from Chateau Guiraud that are ~$13, so I’ll probably start there.

  5. Captain_Button

     /  July 12, 2012

    Dudley: Please sir, I want to join the Few.
    Jon: I’m sorry, there are far too many

    – Beyond The Fringe

    • You are a font, and I am so grateful that you brought your font to my Horde!

      • David L

         /  July 12, 2012

        *Squints* I believe he is Arial. Or perhaps Helvetica. Nobody except type nerds really cares, anyway.

        • caoil

           /  July 12, 2012

          As long as he’s not Comic Sans or Scriptina, we won’t have to get out the rifle.

          <–bit of a font nerd

      • Captain_Button

         /  July 12, 2012

        A monospaced font, that you very much.

    • Captain_Button

       /  July 12, 2012

      3:30 in if it doesn’t start there.

      • Bookwoman

         /  July 12, 2012

        God they’re wonderful. I was fortunate enough to see Peter Cook and Dudley Moore on Broadway in the ’70s. No Alan Bennett though, alas.

  6. But what if we’re not good people? And who decides that?

    • Lizzou

       /  July 12, 2012

      At moments like this, I just listen to Rachmaninoff’s Rhapsody on a Theme by Paganini. Then everything just kinda works out.

      That’s all I got for you, sorry.

    • ME. I am the decider.

      And you’re allllll good.

  7. David L

     /  July 12, 2012

    I find it somewhat surprising that it took until last week for most of the world to realize that Daniel Tosh was a sexist, homophobic troll (in the “doing stuff because he knows it will bother people” sense.)

    • chingona

       /  July 12, 2012

      Yeah. I’ll admit I have found his show funny, and some of the meanness of it was cut by the fact that he ridicules and humiliates himself as much as he does other people. But he’s a grade A douchebag and always has been.

      • Justin

         /  July 12, 2012

        I’ve never watched it, but I always assumed all his show did was steal jokes from the internet.

        • chingona

           /  July 12, 2012

          He makes jokes about stuff on the internet – like, they find videos and he says funny things about them. He also does a “Web Redemption” in which he tracks down people who became famous for some humiliating You Tube video, interviews them about it and then recreates the scenario to give them an opportunity to do it again, and get it right this time. That’s probably the best part of the show.

          His stand-up is separate.

          • Justin

             /  July 12, 2012

            “He makes jokes about stuff on the internet”

            Yeah, I assume that if something is on the internet, any and everything funny about it that can be said is said within about an hour

            • chingona

               /  July 12, 2012

              Okay. You didn’t watch it because it didn’t seem like it would be funny. I sometimes did watch it and sometimes laughed. So …

    • Most of the world couldn’t tell you who the fuck Daniel Tosh is.

    • taylor16

       /  July 12, 2012

      Yeah, basically.

      It also never ceases to amaze me the lengths that straight white dudes will go to defend their right to say insulting shit to women or LGBT people.

    • I assumed people weren’t bothering to boycott his show assuming it would be canceled due to lack of interest.

      • Bob Jones' Neighbor

         /  July 12, 2012

        I thought it was lack of actual comedy…

      • LizR

         /  July 12, 2012

        Personally, I’ve been boycotting his show ever since Comedy Central ran ads for it that just featured someone jumping up and down on a bed and screaming whenever I tried to watch full episodes of TDS or Colbert on their website.

  8. caoil

     /  July 12, 2012

    After walking the entire seawall yesterday, I think my body is going to kill me. Sitting is fine, but more movement than that is painful and slow. So much for being vaguely in shape!

    Also I gave myself rather a nice sunburn. I said to my coworkers, no, I don’t need sunscreen! I’ll be in the trails, in and out of the sun! I’ll be fine! Two very pink shoulders later…I am sitting here applying lots of aloe vera. :-/

    • A send you a sitz bath of chamomile tea. (“Sitz” because you need to sit; bath because it’s good for sore muscles; and Chamomile because it’s good for poorly skin, IIRC. And I might not. But it’ll still be pleasant. I think).

      • caoil

         /  July 12, 2012

        I’m thinking about a cold bath on the weekend (read: all weekend) while it’s up around 33 degrees.

    • koolaide

       /  July 12, 2012

      You always need sunscreen.

      (you in the generic ‘everyone’ sense)

      • caoil

         /  July 12, 2012

        It’s true. And you would think by this age I would have learned that. *hangs head*

        • koolaide

           /  July 12, 2012

          I’ve forgotten sunscreen or (more frequently) neglected to put sunscreen on some part (eg feet) that then procedes to get too much sun. And I, like you, then kick myself for my stupidity.

          • caoil

             /  July 12, 2012

            A few days before my high school grad I thought it would be a super idea to get a bit of sun, so threw on a bathing suit and lounged outside on the back porch. I fell asleep for a bit, and when I woke up, I had a severe burn. Which went marvelously well with my off-the-shoulder grad dress. Especially since I’d started to peel at that point. Those are some lovely photographs from that night, I tell you. So that night should have been the point where I actually learned my lesson.

            • Darth Thulhu

               /  July 12, 2012

              I can appreciate your dedication to not jump to unfounded conclusions after only one data point … but how many more surveys and data collection rounds do you need before considering yourself ready to publish with an acceptable degree of statistical confidence?

              • caoil

                 /  July 12, 2012

                I kid you not, I laughed out loud at this.

  9. CitizenE

     /  July 12, 2012

    This would probably be better for Friday, but for a change of mood, a summery palette cleanser: from Cartagena, Systema Solar, “Bienvenidos” dedicated to Emily–take a break dear and bounce around:

  10. This entire article infuriates me. http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/sunday-school-teachers-balk-at-oath-agreeing-to-all-church-teachings/2012/07/11/gJQAcAvGeW_story.html?hpid=z1

    But the part that really frosts me is this quote from the Oregon diocese pledge: “I do not recognize the legitimacy of anyone’s claim to a moral right to form their own conscience.” WHAT THE F**K!!!!!!!!

    • chingona

       /  July 12, 2012

      I think there’s a sense in which even religious people don’t really take religion seriously anymore. You read a statement like that and you think, “Really?! Who the hell actually believes that?” But that’s the official theology. People used to get killed for advocating adult baptism. Nowadays, I’d guess most Christians from denominations that practice infant baptism don’t really think not having it keeps you out of heaven – much less being a matter worth fighting and killing other people over. Or trans-substantiation – I was shocked (SHOCKED!) when I learned that communion is not supposed to be a metaphor, but actually really the body and blood of Christ.

      • I tried to actually read the document – got as far as marriage, where it said that marriages may not take place outdoors, or be photographed.

    • Just more proof that the hierarchy wants to whittle the church down to the core of believers who will follow them down to the letter and to hell with everyone else (literally).

      • Lizzou

         /  July 12, 2012

        Oh yes, and Benedict is quite frank about this!

        • In a certain light I can understand the impulse. If you really believe that doctrine is key to getting into heaven, why hold on to those who won’t be going there anyway? At the same time, I have a hard time being that certain about anything, so it’s kind of a baffling way to live from my perspective.

    • Lizzou

       /  July 12, 2012

      Arlington is one of, if not THE most, conservative diocese in the US. It felt like a time machine when I lived there and was an active church member…

    • stephen matlock

       /  July 12, 2012

      Looks like the book might be ready for release on Amazon (paperback, Kindle) by the end of July. I have a few very minor adjustments to make to the cover, and then we’re good.

      I figured out last night what the book meant–it’s my journey in the past 3 years. I could not figure out where the storyline came from.

      Well, we’ll see what happens. I have a few dozen people who promise to buy it, so soon I will be rich at $2 a book profit!

      • Dex

         /  July 12, 2012

        Congratulations!

        (I could have told you that’s what the book was about and I haven’t even read it!)

  11. chingona

     /  July 12, 2012

    How does a grown woman who never learned how to do anything with her hair go about correcting this? Are there classes I can take? (I once tried to learn how to do a proper bun by watching a You Tube video and remained just as confused at the end as I was at the beginning.)

    I don’t want to start spending an hour every day on my hair, but I wouldn’t mind being able to do something besides wash it and brush it for special occasions or even just for work. It’s very long, so I usually just twist it up and stick a barrette or clip in it. Sometimes it looks fine all day, but often it quickly falls apart or I have things sticking out in ways that are not cute. When I try and braid it, the braids look terrible. Basically, I have no idea what I’m doing. Help!

    • I would ask (and in fact have asked) the person who cuts my hair*. She forgives me my ignorance, and is, after all, a trained professional!

      *I suppose the technical term for this is “hair dresser.” Or so I’m told.

      • chingona

         /  July 12, 2012

        I have thought of asking for an appointment basically for instruction. Maybe I will do that. When I’ve asked at an appointment, they say something like, “Oh, it’s easy you just blah blah blah blah blah.” And I have no idea what they’re saying, but I don’t want to take up more of their time, when my hair is already a lot of work. (It’s very thick, and when I watch them wrestle with it for what should be a simple trim, I think I should volunteer to pay more.)

        • R_Bargis

           /  July 12, 2012

          I’m glad I’m not the only woman in the world who can’t do her hair. I’m completely mystified by blow dryers and flattening irons and kind of afraid it’s too late to learn.

        • Dex

           /  July 12, 2012

          (Note: this is without knowing much at all about how you look or what your hair is like.)

          Generally speaking, a stylist will probably suggest that you cut your hair shorter and maybe even get layers of some sort. I’m just going based on your comment that you tend to just go in for trims, meaning that your hair is mostly one length without layers (maybe bangs? I don’t know). The struggle you perceive is real for stylists because longer hair of one length takes more work. I’m 100% not saying long hair is bad or anything like that. If you want to mess around with different styles and/or have hair that can be ready fairly quickly and easily, going shorter and having layers can help. Layers make it possible to have more volume and shape to hair, whereas having everything the same length ends up with the hair being heavy and just sort of pulling downward into flatness, making it hard to do much styling beyond the ends of the hair, as the middle just pulls out flat. Again, this isn’t a judgment thing; some people have hair that works well like that; others don’t. My sister had very long hair for most of her life and ultimately went shorter and the two biggest reasons were being able to get ready quickly and to have more styling options. My wife has some of the greatest hair in the history of the world (no, seriously, she gets it cut at a hair school and the stylists have been known to pet it or to call over others to check out her hair). She also hates to trifle with her hair. As such, she keeps it medium length and layered. If it gets too long, it gets flat on top and flippy at the sides. She does do hair bands and ponytails from time to time.

          • chingona

             /  July 12, 2012

            I’ve had everything from a shaved head to hair down to my waist and a lot of in-between styles with layers. What always ends up happening is that I put off going in for a cut and a few months go by and those months turn into a year or two and it’s back to my waist. (My hair grows really fast. I once donated twice to Locks of Love in a single year.)

            So, I actually do have some layers currently, though even the shortest layers are fairly long, and it does help. When I have been a year without a cut, it starts to get a little Cousin It-ish. Part of what led to my bleg was the way the woman did my hair after my last cut. As far as I can tell, she just brushed it a certain way while using the hair dryer, and I walked out of there with really long hair, worn down, that didn’t look like a mop on my head. Frankly, I thought I looked pretty good.

            I think I’ve been hesitant to go for a medium length because something about the drama of really long hair or really short hair (see the shaved head) appeals to me. And I think with the help of some layers and the right technique, it can look pretty good long.

    • I’m a big, big fan of switching up the part whenever I tie it back. It’s impressive how it changes the look, even with a pony tail. But I would suggest playing with your hair whenever you have a spare five minutes and a mirror. It’s a lot of trial and error for what looks okay. (I’ve found magazines and videos to be very little help in the end.)

      • chingona

         /  July 12, 2012

        I’ve recently started moving my part around, and it does make a big difference.

    • LizR

       /  July 12, 2012

      Definitely ask your hairdresser for a learning appointment, be clear that you want simple stuff that you can do daily, and if you don’t understand ask for clarification or to practice on yourself. I remember learning to braid on dolls when I was little, and hair definitely seems like one of those things that’s best learned through doing, so if the hairdresser can let you use mannequins or use to mirrors to show you what’s going on in the back that might be really helpful.

      Also, I just googled “how to make a bun” and the first video result that I got actually uses a ridiculously complicated process that would definitely not be a good place to start learning to do hair. At the point at which the demonstrator announced that you really need two ponytails to make it secure (based on years of ballet, I can assure you that this is overkill), I stopped watching and came to finish writing this comment to you. If you started with a video like that, it might be worth it to switch things up and try finding something that teaches a simpler updo.

      • chingona

         /  July 12, 2012

        Heh. What I mostly remember is that they seemed to be sticking two dozen bobby pins into the bun at random spots as they constructed the bun. Also, one woman was working on another woman’s hair while a third woman narrated. That made it hard for me to imagine doing it myself on my own hair. It frequently seemed like I would need three hands to do what they were doing.

    • And Billy Bragg is playing a Guthrie show in Maryland Sunday night.

      • dmf

         /  July 12, 2012

        without our good hostess with the mostess in attendance? seems cruel…

      • …we missed him in Chicago…

        /sobs in the corner

        /will not be comforted

    • dave in texas

       /  July 12, 2012

      I saw in the birthdays thing in the paper the other day that Arlo’s 65 now.

    • cofax

       /  July 12, 2012

      Perhaps I should cue up “Mermaid Avenue” on my iPod. Except I’m listening to Busman’s Honeymoon and they just discovered the body…

      [Yes, I know the Wimsey novels have anti-semitism and racism sprinkled through them like olives in an otherwise tasty loaf of bread–I dislike olives–but I really enjoy the characters and the writing is excellent. And I love the respect Sayers gives to Harriett and her mind.]

  12. dmf

     /  July 12, 2012

    has anyone heard from silentbeep in a while?

    • CitizenE

       /  July 12, 2012

      Loved this. and d thanks for the e, be

      • dmf

         /  July 12, 2012

        you are in the land of skulls and desert roses now my friend, my pleasure as always

        • k___

           /  July 13, 2012

          silentbeep is definitely at Coates’ place on the regular!

    • James Cornwell

       /  July 12, 2012

      I cannae believe I’ve never heard of this band before. Just checked ’em out on iTunes. Fantastic! Thanks for the video🙂

  13. CitizenE

     /  July 12, 2012

    Did anyone other than me see the first episode of Hit & Miss, the affectionate story of a transexual hitwomaninaman’sbody who adopts an orphaned family in the working class English countryside after finding the diseased’s mother had borne her/him, then living in a “previous life.” a son among her four teen to small child kids.

    Only Chloe Sevigny, I believe, could have pulled off the opening scenes first perpetrating a cold blooded, pistol-silenced assassination, following it up with a full frontal, complete with breasts and, at least from a distance, somewhat impressive penis in a shower cleaning up afterword, while later explaining to her confused, new found son, frightened by the rapid turn of events in his life, mother dying and the change this new, dad who looks like a woman in his life might mean, that without change in the world, there would be no butterflies. Just asking if anyone else caught it.

    • CitizenE

       /  July 12, 2012

      I should add I also really dug the way she could walk like the dorkiest girl in the school yard up to this guy and then, first packing a punch that would worry Manny Pacquiao, stomp the rude, crude, crew-cutted blow hard bully harrying her new found famille, threatening to put them all out on the street, once he hit the ground, following that up with a few remorseless pointed toe bootends to the ribs and jaw delivered with abandon. Then, dork her way back to the family and demand that son go up and punch the lights out of bully’s son who had apparently made life miserable for him in the not too distant past.

  14. Ducklings under my back yard shrubbery!

  15. scone

     /  July 12, 2012

    I’m looking for nonfiction recommendations that I can get for my boyfriend. I’m thinking about books along the lines of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks: books about interesting but not necessarily breaking-news-type stories.

    For example, here are some books he’s read recently and liked:

    Ship Ablaze: The Tragedy of Steamboat General Slocum
    The Wave: In Pursuit of the Rogues, Freaks and Giants of the Ocean
    Midnight in Peking: How the Murder of a Young Englishwoman Haunted the Last Days of Old China.

    I figured this would be just the group to make such recommendations. Thoughts?

    • Bookwoman

       /  July 12, 2012

      The Hare with the Amber Eyes by Edmund de Waal. If I describe it as the story of a fabulously wealthy Jewish family (the author’s), beginning in 19th c. France, and told through the history of their netsuke collection, it may sound impossibly precious. But it’s riveting.

    • any interest in cryptology? The Friar And the Cipher regarding the Voynich Manuscript might be nice.

    • Oliver Sack’s memoir “Uncle Tungsten”

      • efgoldman

         /  July 12, 2012

        Almost anything by Oliver Sachs, in fact.

    • chingona

       /  July 12, 2012

      The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down is excellent and would definitely fall in the “If you liked Immortal Life, you might also like …” category. It’s about a Hmong family in California whose youngest daughter has severe epilepsy and the tragic cultural misunderstandings between the family and the doctors that lead to her not getting the treatment she needs. It backs out and tells the story of the Hmong in Vietnam and America and the science of epilepsy and the history of Central California, and then narrows in again on the family and back and forth and so on.

    • chingona

       /  July 12, 2012

      Oh, and my husband just read and really like “In the Heart of the Sea” about the Whaleship Essex (which became the basis for Moby DIck).

      http://www.amazon.com/In-Heart-Sea-Nathaniel-Philbrick/dp/0753110334

      I’m currently reading 1491, about pre-contact America, and really liking that.

      http://www.amazon.com/1491-Revelations-Americas-Before-Columbus/dp/1400032059/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1342126728&sr=1-1&keywords=1491

      Devil in the White City is another good one – about the 1893 World’s Fair in Chicago and serial killer H.H. Holmes.

      http://www.amazon.com/Devil-White-City-Madness-Changed/dp/0375725601/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1342126812&sr=1-1&keywords=Devil+in+the+White+City

      • Ooh, I loved 1491!

        Also, as someone who comes from a place where archaeology really does tend to be what Eddie Izzard termed “a series of small walls,” the pictures of the ruins were gob-smacking. Like: Clear away a little (ok, a lot) of jungle, and voila! It’s an entire temple!

        • chingona

           /  July 12, 2012

          I’ve been to a lot of sites in Peru and Mexico, and it’s pretty freaking amazing. There is a church on a big hill in Cholula (southeast of Mexico City), but the hill is actually a pyramid still covered with dirt. And then down the street, there’s another church but the stones have all these weird carvings on them because they’re from another temple that was torn down to make the church. It’s just absolutely everywhere. I once was in a pretty remote part of Yucatan with a Mexican friend who is a teacher in a village there, and there were these little hills dotting the otherwise flat landscape. Except the hills were each little pyramids – just – hanging out.

    • Captain_Button

       /  July 12, 2012

      Operation Mincemeat: How a Dead Man and a Bizarre Plan Fooled the Nazis and Assured an Allied Victory by Ben MacIntyre

      The revised story of “The Man Who Never Was”, a WW2 ploy where they dumped a dead body in a uniform in the ocean so the Nazis would be fooled by the fake plans for a Greek invasion it had. To divert resources away from the real invasion of Sicily.

    • scone

       /  July 12, 2012

      Thanks all! These are great recs!

  16. dmf

     /  July 12, 2012

    The Invention of Air: A Story Of Science, Faith, Revolution, And The Birth Of America by Steven Johnson

  17. OMG HOW IS IT NOT 5PM YET?

    this baseline confusions on the workings of linear time brought to you by thursday because thursday seems a lot longer due to not being a half day friday.