Open Thread

Just got done watching Looper, and I really enjoyed it. I don’t want to deal with the inevitable wankery in the comments about all the flaws in the time travel part of the story, so I’ll just say “STFU, nerds, all movies require some suspension of disbelief and it was in the plot.”

Good news on the computer front- spent the afternoon pulling out pieces parts and figured out the problem- one of my crossfired Radeons died, so I just am rocking one for now and ordered a new GeForce. Really happy I do not have to do a full rebuild.

Watching LSU v. Clemson. What are you up to.

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173 replies
  1. RaflW says:

    Just cooked the hell out of a ham bone from a party before Christmas. Huge LeCrueset full of creamy potato ham soup barely got dented by 4 bowls (2 each for me and the BF).

    He’s got to study (grad school doesn’t care about NYE, assignments are due online in the next 24-36 hours), so I’m off to an informal, not very boozy NYE party that will be fun but that I’ll not feel guilty about leaving at about 10:30 CST.

  2. General Stuck says:

    I just yesterday read a review on how cleverly Looper deals with the thorny plot issues of time travel and basic plausibility beyond fiction. I will watch it, and would have anyways, but good to know it could be special as time travel sci fy goes.

  3. Phylllis says:

    LSU and Clemson are a lot more evenly matched than I thought. Shame about Sammy Watkins, but Clemson seems to have adjusted.

  4. Hill Dweller says:

    I’m watching After the Thin Man and pounding the remaining bottles of Sierra Nevada.

    Myrna Loy was the bee’s knees.

  5. Goblue72 says:

    Funny, I just watched Looper last night, taking advantage of Washington state’s newfound legalization of the wicked weed. Was a decent flick. I’m becoming a fan of Joseph Gordon Leavitt. Really dug the ending.

  6. MikeJ says:

    You had two radeons, one died, and you’re going to replace it with an nvidia?Is it at the point where one new card is faster than your two old ones?

  7. r€nato says:

    to this unbalanced Republican, ‘don’t tread on me’ takes on a whole new meaning. Glad the cops were able to stem this spate of vandalism and spare other opponents.

    Former New Mexico Congressional District 1 Republican primary candidate Gary Smith was arrested this Friday after being video taped slashing the tires of at least four fellow Republicans.

  8. lamh35 says:

    Saw Looper in the theatres and I remember coming out of the theatres, satisfied if ya know what I mean. I think I really was blown away by it. It def makes you look at Bruce Willis in a different light (then u remember that they are releasing another Die Hard film next year and u go back to ur original thinking about Willis) and JGLevitt was awesome as usual.

    Anyway, you know ur getting old when it’s New Year’s eve and the ball drop is 5 hours away and you are already yawning. I may not make it to the countdown…lol.

    So if I miss it, Happy New Year’s BJ’ers. Youse guys are good people. Hope the beginning of ya’ll New Years is as exciting as mine seems it will be.

    ETA: @Brachiator: it’s one of the reasons I liked the movie I think. U feel uncomfortable because of the character Bruce Willis plays. You want to root for him cause of the back story, but what he “has” to do is so cutthroat that you really should hate him. they made him very sympathetic to a point

  9. Brachiator says:

    Really enjoyed Looper. Liiked some of the misdirection. I remember that when I saw it in the theater, some of the audience had difficulty accepting that Bruce Willis was not purely a good guy.

    Taking a moment during dinner to post this while I am still coherent. Into my second glass of a very nice Malbec.

    So, just wanted to take a moment to wish all a happy New Year. And extra good wishes to the founder of the Balloon Juice feast, John Cole.

  10. Mr Stagger Lee says:

    Same here for football,another Cleveland Browns rebuilding project, but at least with an new owner hope? I trying to find a stream to watch soccer since the NHL season is Verloren. (yes I will watch college B-ball, but I miss the San Jose Sharks)

  11. Zifnab says:

    Regarding Loopers, I honestly would have liked it if they’d alluded to what happens post-climax. It ends a bit abruptly. All told, however, the acting was solid and the plot was cleverly done. It’s not air-tight, but I feel like it could be given another 10 minutes or so of screen time.

    Hanging out in a hotel room in Rome, post New Years celebration, and packing up for my flight back home.

  12. Bob In Portland says:

    I’ve been trying to get my “Daughter of the Confederacy” sister to admit that the Republicans are trying to screw her out of her Social Security. So far she won’t talk about it.

  13. Suffern ACE says:

    Last post for the year. I’m resolving to stop following politics for a year, thinking we are going to be gridlocked and not following the stupidity might make me more positive.

    Based on the small sample size of similar resolutions, I should be posting again on January 3, after some gym mishap scares me off that wagon, too.

  14. lamh35 says:

    @Zifnab: It did end very suddenly, but I suspect the film makers wanted it to be like Inception and let the audience decide for itself what the “future” held.

  15. Spaghetti Lee says:

    Circumstance has found me in a hotel room in suburban Tampa with no car. I’d complain, but it’s not like my other NYE’s were less lame.

    I’m still depressed about the Bears. It almost seems like the most logical thing to do would be to wait until Rodgers/Calvin Johnson/Adrian Peterson have gotten old/left town in 5 years, and spend those years rebuilding the creaky old D-line and linebacker corps and the dreadful O-Line and give up on making the playoffs. It does seem logical, but boy would it be horrid to watch.

    Seriously, no other team in football has to contend with arguably the best QB, WR, and RB, on different teams, all in their division. Lovie wasn’t a bad coach, in my opinion. He just didn’t know how to run an offense and couldn’t find an OC who did. 10-6 would be good enough to make the playoffs almost every other year. Feh.

  16. Rosie Outlook says:

    I am sniffling, sneezing, and watching the Twilight Zone marathon. Hoping tomorrow is better since I must get up at oh-dark-thirty to do various boring time-consuming things.

  17. handy says:

    @Bob In Portland:

    She hasn’t been paying attention. Just ask her if she agrees with the Repubs that the federal government is drowning in debt due to “entitlement programs.” See if a lightbulb goes off then.

  18. quannlace says:

    I’m watching After the Thin Man and pounding the remaining bottles of Sierra Nevada.

    And at 10 pm, TCM is showing “The Apartment” Good viewing, movie-wise.

  19. James Gary says:

    I don’t want to deal with the inevitable wankery in the comments about all the flaws in the time travel part of the story, so I’ll just say “STFU, nerds, all movies require some suspension of disbelief and it was in the plot.”

    Jesus, Cole, you’re the kind of guy who would watch some weepy estrogen-rich movie on Lifetime and, enjoying it, pre-emptively warn BJ readers that it was supposed to be horribly schmaltzy and sentimental.

    FYI to those who haven’ seen “Looper:” the convoluted and arbitrary script is likely to feel really annoying and amateurish to anyone expecting multiple-levels cleverness along the lines of great similar-themed (and much more carefully thought-out) films like “Primer” or “Videodrome.”

    As always, just my opinion. Dissection here (contains spoilers):

  20. MattR says:

    @Spaghetti Lee: They have largely failed to solidify both the offensive line and WR corps over the past 5 years (The Marshall trade being the exception). It is hard to tell if the blame lies with the GMs not getting the right players or the coaches not teaching them and utiliting them properly. Given the offensive weapons in that division, you can’t rely on your defense to consistently win games (no matter how good it may be). And you won’t have a consistent offense when you are lacking in both linemen and receivers. You may be able to survive without one or the other, but not both.

  21. SiubhanDuinne says:

    Watching LSU v. Clemson. What are you up to.

    I know nothing about football, but my money’s on the Tigers.

  22. Dee Loralei says:

    Watching the game too. Drinking Prosecco.Made hors d’ouvres for dinner cheese palmiers, deviled eggs, drunken cherry tomatos,smoked kielbasa en croute, papaya wrapped in prosciutto and stuffed mushrooms. Quiet night at home for the family.

    Friends are coming tomorrow for brunch so the black eyed peas are soaking and the dough for the cheese danish is resting Will also bake a ham and make a fruit salad, haven’t figured out whether to make something else or not. Found a recipe for quick pickling some celery and am thinking about doing that for the bloody Mary’s.

    Happy New Year’s to all Bjers and your families.

  23. Nemo_N says:

    I’ve been thinking about watching that movie, but will it make me look smart?

    That’s the most important consideration when deciding what to watch.

  24. cathyx says:

    I made ribs for dinner and feeling fat and sassy. I will roll myself to bed later. I don’t stay up for the new year. Yes, I know I’m boring.

  25. danielx says:

    Just got done scarfing my share of the tiger prawns with cocktail sauce, waiting for the apple pie to finish baking. Then it’s time to crack open the pinot noir while fixing dinner – filets, asparagus steamed in white wine and butter, and garlic mashed potatoes with homemade bread, followed by said apple pie with vanilla ice cream…then Drambuie with coffee, movies (I voted for Practical Magic but have been overruled) and the usual midnight festivities if I make it that long.

    I tried to remember the last time I actually went out on New Year’s Eve, and it’s been at least fifteen years. No need to give the authorities any more chances than necessary…

  26. Johnny Coelacanth says:

    Working until midnight, then going home to celebrate with some brandy and quasi-legal herbs. Then to bed. Maybe some WoW in between.

  27. Raven says:

    Gonna go up the street to a bonfire at half-time. This DVR is really nice! The biggest problem is the really nice brunch party tomorrow at noon with a 1pm kickoff for the dawgs. The dvr is good but I worry some dope will show up and start babbling about the score. White people problem.

  28. Maude says:

    @Rosie Outlook:
    I went to buy one and they wanted $105. I got pottery casserole pots for about $9. The pottery ones are great.
    They clean us easy.
    Twilight Zone is wonderful. I have seen all of them.

  29. NotMax says:

    Just finished peeling 5 lb. of potatoes.

    All that is left is mashing them when they’re ready and putting together two big trays of shepherd’s pie (prepared the meat and veggie part yesterday), also assembling 3 dozen sweet and sour crab & asparagus puffs so they can be slid into the oven later on during the night.

    Spiced shrimp doing their 24-hour marinade thing in the fridge; salmon mousse looks like it set up well overnight.

  30. ruemara says:

    I have a holiday movie stack in front of me and the minute Maddow and O’Donnell are off my telly, it’s either Looper, ParaNorman or Fantastic Mr. Fox into the player. I can suspend disbelief, I’m halfway soused on 4 oz of jinro. Disbelief is the least of my problems.

  31. lamh35 says:

    @Raven: Democrats win key tax fights in emerging fiscal cliff deal

    Democrats win key tax fights in emerging fiscal cliff deal.
    The package being negotiated by Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell and Vice President Joe Biden amounts to a defeat for the GOP on multiple fronts. It not only raises tax rates, but also extends stimulus-era tax policy, prolongs emergency unemployment benefits, maintains targeted tax breaks derided by the party as corporate handouts and revives limits on deductions for the wealthy that have been dormant for almost a decade — all policies that the GOP has fought. It’s expected to raise $600 billion over 10 years.
    Above all, the emerging deal would shatter 20 years of Republican orthodoxy on taxes, undercutting a core part of the party identity that had been built around giving no quarter to any tax increase — ever.

    Question: so I thought the outrage was over cuts of SS/Medicare, but I don’t see those cuts. So that has been completely forgotten over the $400K bit?

  32. Corner Stone says:

    @Raven: Hey oldtimer, you have a ’66 Fleetside, is that right?
    Since you have nothing better to do, I’ve been looking for a project ’68 F100 SWB for a while now. So as the TSA likes to say, “If you see something, say something.”

  33. NotMax says:


    Early yet. And the gathering is not at my place.

    We’re expecting him though, unless his work schedule is funky.

    Always a crapshoot as to how many show up. With luck, we’ll get between 16 and 24 or so, including some who stop in, nibble and move on, making the rounds of a bunch of parties.

  34. gbear says:

    Just got back from a trip to the grocery store and it’s cold as all get out. I checked weather underground and it says 6 above but feels like 2 below. My legs, hands and face agree.

    It’s 8:00 here and it appears that lots of bikers have decided to do a bicycle bar crawl. Between the cold, the icy roads and the drunk drivers, it sounds like a really bad idea to me.

    I’m not setting foot outside the house until I go back to work on Wednesday. Hopefully my bottle of Robitussin DM will hold out till then.

    May 2013 be a good year (in equal measure) for everyone.

  35. TaMara (BHF) says:

    I feel like I haven’t been here in ages. I want to reply to the first 10 comments because they are all things I’m interested in. (Thin Man, love those movies, lamh35 – wishing you well on your move and new adventures, BruceS – WOOT, etc)

    Instead, let me wish everyone a very happy new year!

    I usually stay up till the ball drops, but this year I’m thinking I’ll change my luck and go to bed now. I’m hoping 2013 does not suck.

    Hugs and kisses everyone.

  36. JoyfulA says:

    @r€nato: Notice this part? “Originally, he thought it was a random act and decided not to call police. But, after replacing several more sets of punctured tires.”

  37. RedKitten says:

    We have a bunch of puff pastry hors d’oeuvres in the oven (baby is just going to have to deal with a bit of elevated glucose tonight.) I had two sips of beer and set it aside, due to raging heartburn, so my poison of choice tonight is diet Sprite. The kidlet is in bed, and the husband and I are going to hang out on the couch, nosh all evening and watch The Hunger Games on Netflix.

    Not particularly exciting, but I don’t want excitement right now — I just want to rest and relax.

    Bliadhna Mhath Ùr, everybody! May 2013 bring the return of common sense to the world.

  38. Corner Stone says:

    @Raven: Yeah, but I can’t find one anywhere in Texas. I’m sure they are all over but just in some old farmer’s barn on the South 40 acres and never to be seen again.

    I’ve found some online but all the listings are old and long gone.
    Looking for a SWB with the V8 but I’d also be interested in a straight six SWB project.

  39. Liberty60 says:

    was reading Ezra Kleins column about the deal, and this comment made me laugh out loud:

    Ezra – you freaking freak – the country cannot pay its bills. Spending cuts are not only necessary, but inevitable. Why you choose to ignore this is – I’ll be kind – “opaque” – but you’re a hack lightweight until you address the real good for the country.
    Shouldn’t you want to be David Brooks? Instead of just some dismissable blogger? Do you think that this hack political blog is any way to be great?

    Is DougJ trolling again?

  40. lamh35 says:

    @lamh35: on twitter they are saying that Pelosi and Reid both signed off on the Biden deal. So how soon before the Pelosi sell out memes start. Shouldn’t Pelosi WANT to kill the bill if it’s as bad as has been reported?

  41. Bill D. says:


    Most people don’t understand infrared light, in particular how near-infrared light behaves pretty similarly to visible light. It can be emitted by special lights, but since it’s invisible to us it can only be seen by special cameras, not by criminals or animals (the two groups do not overlap; please don’t insult the latter). As my wife pointed out, he didn’t even put on a mask, presumably because he thought it was dark and that he wouldn’t be seen. After all,it looked dark to *him*.

  42. Mnemosyne says:

    My dad is back in the hospital, unfortunately. I’m talking to my brother right now as we figure out what we’re supposed to do.

  43. MattR says:

    @Mnemosyne: Aw, fuck. That sucks. Best wishes to the whole family. You know who are pretty unympathetic about that kind of thing? Airlines. They may have a lower fare available but it is still nowhere near low (or as low as it could be).

  44. Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @lamh35: Question: so I thought the outrage was over cuts of SS/Medicare, but I don’t see those cuts. So that has been completely forgotten over the $400K bit?

    Buses are many
    under them all Obama
    has thrown us. Veal pen.

    I know the last is a non sequitur, but I think I got the haiku right?

  45. Suzanne says:

    My husband and I have both the kiddos tonight, so we are spending the evening at home. Neighbors are already starting to fuck around with fireworks, so I want to be home to comfort the puppeh. We are thinking of playing Settlers of Catan or having a Mario Bros. marathon. TheElder mini wants to try to make it until midnight for the first time. I might fall asleep. Heh.

    Last year, I resolved to take three of my licensing exams, including the two that I thought would be the hardest for me (MEP and structural). I did it…..just took structural on the 22nd. So I don’t know yet if I passed.

    I’m hereby resolving to take three more of the fuckers in 2013. I really want to be done.

  46. Rosie Outlook says:

    When will the first pet pictures of 2013 be posted?

    This thread makes me hungry. I used to read Free Republic till they began discussing the best way to assassinate a president, which was a little bit too weird for my humble tastes, and they never had food topics like you folks do. If I remember right, the head freeper got a visit from the friendly folks at Secret Service, which the fool should have anticipated. They should have stuck with discussing news stories.

  47. Baud says:

    I can’t believe the second term hasn’t even started yet.

    Next year will be great. Happy New Year everyone.

  48. Svensker says:


    And at 10 pm, TCM is showing “The Apartment” Good viewing, movie-wise.

    Thanks for the heads up, tip-wise. It’s a favorite.

    Just got back to Canukistan, SO still state-side, son is off to visit the GF, so on my own. I just made it to the supermarket before it closed until Jan 2 (they do that in Toronto!) and stocked up on eggnog fixings, salad, and ingredients for NY Day split pea soup. Sure wish there was some football, but this is Canada… The Apartment and some eggnog will sub nicely.

  49. Schlemizel says:

    Made shrimp risotto for dinner. Now a nice little white wine & well see if we can make it last till midnight.

    Nothing like starting the new year off with a bang.

    With any luck the world will come to an end before the sun comes up & I never have to worry about the shit state of the world or the excruciating slow destruction of a once great country.

  50. magurakurin says:


    Thanks, Happy New Year to you and yours as well. Not a bad day here. Chilly but sunny and no wind. Of course on the Sea of Japan side of the country they are getting hammered by heavy snow and near hurricane force wind. Amazing the difference being on the leeward side of a big island makes.

    Anybody know who this succubus is that is walking next to McConnell in this photo? She looks scary, the look in her eyes. The GOPpers really are evil. Like vampire evil.

  51. schrodinger's cat says:

    Made blackened swordfish served it with oven roasted potatoes, spinach salad and mango salsa. Had some Finger Lake wines that some friends gave us for Christmas.

    I don’t like sci-fi movies that make stupid scientific mistakes, and I haven’t seen Looper, tonight wast the first night I heard of it.

  52. Oregon guy says:

    @magurakurin :

    You are in Japan, too?

    Quiet, sunny nice here in Kanagawa-ken, albeit a bit cold. Recovering on the couch, watching my home country go down in flames from the other side of teh Pacific…

  53. WaterGirl says:

    I will confess to having caught up on both seasons of Revenge since whatever point in November all the regular shows stopped having new episodes. Just finished the last episode yesterday.

    Now I know what people mean when they say something is their “guilty pleasure”. I suppose it makes me really shallow, but I really liked it.

  54. Maude says:

    I spent a day and evening when I was 3 with a girl from Japan. We had the time of our lives. We didn’t speak each others language. We were kindred spirits. I think of her often and hope she is happy. I still miss her.
    NJ has different weather as well.
    I’ll look for photos of the storm tomorrow.

  55. magurakurin says:

    @Oregon guy: Yeah, I’m Tokushima City on Shikoku. Been here since 1998 actually. Very peaceful and quiet this AM. Kanagawa eh? That’s the big city, right? Are you near Yokohama? I’ve been to Tokyo once, but never Yokohama. It’s a bit of journey over to there for us. We visit Kobe/Osaka/Kyoto when we want to go to the big city. I actually moved to Japan from Portland, OR. Don’t really miss the clouds and drizzle, but I often miss the Cascades and wide open spaces of Central Oregon.

  56. Evolving Deep Southerner says:

    Well, Clemson’s playing a hell of a lot tougher than I thought they would. Especially with Watkins out.

    ETA: As I typed that, Clemson just coughed it up. Never mind.

  57. magurakurin says:


    NJ has different weather as well.

    Are you a Jersey Girl? I was born in Philly, raised in the suburbs, but my grandparents had a home in Longport. I spent all my summers there and still go back every August. Our home didn’t get too much damage, but some folks I know up in Ventnor had major damage.

  58. HE Pennypacker, Wealthy Industrialist says:

    I’ve been playing the Walking Dead game all day on my iPad. It rocks the old school story game mechanics really well — and the first episode is free!

  59. Steeplejack says:

    Getting into the evening late. Had an early evening siesta, then a long phone conversation with an old friend in Atlanta. Popped the champers about half an hour ago and am settling in for the evening. Just caught five minutes of the Kevin Sorbo Hercules series as I was channel-surfing. Ah, Xena in her early days. Good times.

  60. RobertDSC-iMac G5 says:

    I finished cataloging my books for the evening. Now it’s Dr. Pepper time.

    Tired of the Rethug traitor scum doing what they do. And we were so close to getting rid of the Bush tax cuts. Fuck.

  61. Mnemosyne says:

    Thanks, everybody. I was pretty sure when I left on Saturday that he was going to end up back in the hospital, but it sucks to be right. Of course all of his regular doctors are on vacation right now (slackers!) so I don’t think we’ll have any solid information until at least one of them is back in the office.

    The one thing that’s worrying me is that my dad gave me a bunch of paperwork to give to my brother, and neither one of us saw any healthcare-related stuff in there (ie advance directive, medical power of attorney, etc.) We’re really hoping he just forgot to include it, because if he doesn’t have it ready to go, the next few months are REALLY going to suck.

  62. magurakurin says:

    Looks like Hunter just started a whinegasm over at the GOS. Must suck to be those people.

    “The angst, the angst…”

  63. gogol's wife says:

    Blissfully at home this year. Didn’t watch After the Thin Man because I’ve seen it too many times (although James Stewart is dreamy in it). There was an amusing Broadway musical documentary on public TV. I love Helen Morgan!

    Happy New Year!

  64. Robert says:

    I have no problem with the time travel in Looper. My problem is that the the film doesn’t commit to the insanity. The Bruce Willis story is handled beautifully. It’s the JGL story that suffers, especially with the stuff that they cut out from Emily Blunt’s character. There are some really key lines to the why and how of her character that were in the trailer and in the early versions of the studio synopses that disappeared in the editing bay.

  65. mai naem says:

    There’s something odd about Obama basically showing off in his earlier little speech. It’s almost like he was goading the Repubs not to vote for it. Just my opinion.

  66. lamh35 says:

    President Obama got 99 percent of what he wanted. How ironic !

    uh oh, unless this is snark, both Pelosi and Ed Schultz seem to be on board? Will shouts of shut up Ed join the Pelosi ain’t a truth liberal outrage?

  67. Odie Hugh Manatee says:


    OMG, this bit is hilarious!

    “I had a hunch it was him,” Arnold-Jones tells SFR. “People tried to tell me it was the work of Democrats, but I knew that wasn’t the case. This isn’t the normal kind of political retribution you might expect. This is scary.”

    The voice of experience here…lol! She’s more afraid of a fellow Republican than she is of a Democrat. In her world, there’s normal political retribution and then there’s “scary” Republican political retribution.

    Takes one to know one?

  68. Mnemosyne says:

    @mai naem:

    There’s something odd about Obama basically showing off in his earlier little speech. It’s almost like he was goading the Repubs not to vote for it. Just my opinion.

    I’ve already been informed that that’s not possible and it was only Obama’s own incompetence that led him to do that.

    Funny how his incompetence keeps leading the Republicans to shoot themselves in the foot over and over again, and all totally by accident, innit?

    (Myself, I tend to subscribe more to the Ian Fleming construction of what’s going on.)

  69. Yutsano says:

    Get off work early, only to find my car had been towed. At least it didn’t set me back as much as I thought, but I’m gonna raise some unholy Cain with the City of Seattle in the next few weeks.

  70. Ron says:

    If I see one more “progressive” on Twitter whining that Obama made a concession on taxes, I’m gonna scream.

  71. onlymike says:

    Hi guys – sorry I haven’t been able to comment. My computer has been giving me fits. Also, my wireless svc runs out tomorrow or the next day – I’m going to see about extending it but may not be able to. I don’t know where I stand with the eviction but will know more tomorrow. I went to the VA today and was there all afternoon. Apparently, I have OCD (I kind of suspected that – I aslo suspect that I have ADHD and Agoraphobia but one step at a time) I have been prescribed Fluoxetine and will start taking in the morning tomorrow. My blood pressure doesn’t look good but I think that’s just stress. I have an appointment for blood work Wednesday morning so need to fast for 12 hrs beforehand (no problem for me I just fasted for nearly four days last week haha. I saw three different people today and they were all great to talk to and seemed eager to help (even with the holiday fast approaching) didn’t get out until just before 6pm (when the pharmacy closed so cut it close.) I wasn’t able to get to Trailer 14 so will do that Wednesday after the blood work. Also found out that I weigh much much more than I realized – Holy S***!!!!

    I’m hoping to be able to get cat pictures to post tonight – had hoped to over the weeked so …?

    Haven’t had a chance to read the comments (or most of what happened today – don’t know yet how Obama caved/betrayed/threw-under-the-bus etc yet (but if John McCain is butthurt that makes me happy.) Really looking forward to reading the link about Sean Hannity losing half his audience and as I was scrolling down I saw someone talking about watching The Thin Man – excellent. May I recommend as a great double feature: My Man Godfrey/His Girl Friday. Equally awesome: Midnight/The Lady Eve.

    One cat is curled up sleeping; the other is bouncing off the walls – I’m somewhere in between but I know I’m not going to make til midnight.

    Thank you MazeDancer and thankyou eclare, Jane2 and lurker-not-commenter Dean. And thankyou everyone at Balloon Juice – HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

  72. Anya says:

    @mai naem: According to Ed Schultz’s twitter feed “President Obama got 99 percent of what he wanted. How ironic.” Also, too Bob Cesca says: The deal as I understand it: 50% tax hikes, 25% defense cuts, 25% other spending cuts. Phased-out deductions on $200K+. How does this suck?

    I don’t know the details of this deal to judge it one way or another, but I know this, in negotiations we will never get 100% of what we want. Therefore, I am satisfied as long as the spending cuts are not at the expense of the poor and the elderly.

    I am in Toronto to help my mom pack (my parents are moving back to Boston. Well, at least my mom and dad will join her in few months), and all I am doing is following the deal via twitter. I am a terrible daughter.

  73. MattR says:

    @Yutsano: That sucks. Did you at least figure out it was towed right away? I had my car towed out of my apt complex the first week I was living on my own after college (the landlord forgot to mention the parking passes) and I thought my car was stolen. It was almost a relief to find out it was just towed.

  74. Spaghetti Lee says:

    The thing about taxes staying low for $250,000-$450,000 incomes, I don’t really mind that. One idea that I’ve heard and liked is that there needs to be more distinction in the highest tax brackets. $250,000 is different from a million, and they’re both much different than a billion. Why not tax billionaires at 60-70 percent and keep the rates low for people in the low six figures? (I mean why not logically, not why not politically: I know why not politically.)

  75. General Stuck says:

    Glory BEE, an Announcement.

    I am here to inform you the General Stuck is just now the proud mother and father of a bouncing baby kidney stone, just delivered via primal screams and a minor flame war. The sucker looks like a small meteorite of unknown origin, all swaddled in cloth. I will name it corner stone. happy new year, from me and the little one, and Charlie. See you sometime next year.
    Tally ho!! I’m going to pass out now.

  76. onlymike says:

    @Hill Dweller: Yes. Yes she was. As wonderful as she was in comedy – few have ever had as light a touch – I think of her performance in The Best Years of Our Lives. The scene when Fredric March comes home and she’s in the kitchen and she just freezes with her back to the camera … I practically tear up just thinking about that. Another great of my favorite comedic dames is Jean Arthur – if you haven’t seen Easy Living that’s one to check out.

  77. Mr Stagger Lee says:

    @magurakurin: The pie fight will be epic. I guess the “The Dems will be f&^%ked in 2014″threads in 3…2. Meanwhile the GOP will have their hair on fire brigade, The Club For Growth and Grover Norquist will do their knife work in private.

  78. Mnemosyne says:

    @Spaghetti Lee:

    One idea that I’ve heard and liked is that there needs to be more distinction in the highest tax brackets. $250,000 is different from a million, and they’re both much different than a billion. Why not tax billionaires at 60-70 percent and keep the rates low for people in the low six figures?

    Sounds good to me. IIRC, the rationale back in the day was “tax simplification,” but if you make $1 million or more a year, you can afford an accountant, or at least the super-deluxe version of TurboTax.

  79. magurakurin says:

    @Ron: Especially when they don’t look at the detail. The difference between 250k and 450k is about 100billion in ten years. The former would bring in 700 billion the latter 600. The real “concern” now is that Obama’s weak negotiating style will only embolden the Republicans to go even crazier with the debt limit. GOS is filled with dire predictions of draconian cuts to SSI and Medicare as a result of this recent sell out. I couldn’t live like those people over at KOS do. Kos needs to figure out some way to spray Prozac through their computer screens.

  80. General Stuck says:


    been off and on the phone the past two weeks with my father, who is barely getting around, and his wife, my stepmother, who is very ill. Luckily, I have a sister nurse and half brother to help them, since I am 1500 miles away, and can barely take care of myself. well wishes for your dad, :)

  81. MikeJ says:


    Funny how his incompetence keeps leading the Republicans to shoot themselves in the foot over and over again, and all totally by accident, innit?

    In sports the best teams seem to be the luckiest. Funny how that works.

  82. Yutsano says:

    @MattR: I found out pretty much right away since the guards in the building saw it happen. A couple of good friends at work helped me out, which was awesome on several levels (got to meet his wife and see his unbelievably CUTE little spud for the first time) and was home by 6. Beans and greens shall wait until Wednesday, which is fine since the bacon is still in the freezer anyway.

    @Steeplejack: It will be interesting to say the least. I already alerted a couple of attorney buds so I hope things go rather smoothly. And I think the tow guy took some pity on me since I only got charged $125, the max was $170.

  83. Jeremy says:

    @Anya: True !
    This deal is a win for the Dems. The fact that the republicans agreed to a tax increase is a big deal. The emo left will never be satisfied even if Obama gets 100 %. While this is going on the right wing nut jobs are pissed about this deal.

  84. General Stuck says:


    Nah, Charlie is fine long as the Alpo flows. It has been no fun, and this one got stuck near the prostate for the past several days. An altogether different kind of misery. Wasn’t even sure it was a stone till it popped out just a while ago.

  85. Valdivia says:


    Sorry to hear this and a very speedy recovery to your Dad. I just went through a lot of this stuff and spent so much time at the hospital I know all the nurses. I know how hard it is. Many hugs.

  86. Suffern ACE says:

    At the circus this evening. I can’t decide if I find contortionists amazing because they seem to be missing joints and bones that I think humans should have or find them annoying for reminding me that flexibility exercises are another thing that I neglect to do regularly. I think I should resolve to do a morning stretch this year.

  87. The Dangerman says:


    While this is going on the right wing nut jobs are pissed about this deal.

    Don’t know why; anything they don’t get now they get during Debt Ceiling II (which should be shitloads of fun).

  88. Emma says:

    @The Dangerman: Uh? What did they get now? A tax increase on high-income Americans? No cuts to SS and Medicare? A five year extension of several major tax credits for working families? I didn’t know the right-wingers wanted that.

  89. Jeremy says:

    @magurakurin: The funny thing is that the emo left does not understand Obama’s negotiating style by now. Obama plays the good cop and the other dems in the senate and house leadership play the bad cops. Obama goes ahead and gives a concession that the GOP asks for knowing full well that the compromise will fail. Then he goes before the American people and says he is taking heat and trying to work with the other side. After it fails a new compromise is worked out which is more tolerable for his side. This is exactly what happened in the debt deal in 2011. The president plays these political games.

  90. Mr Stagger Lee says:

    Well Kos did a massacre, of some firebaggers who called for voting third party during the elections. I think his words to the effect to the Nader rebels was.

    Fuck You, no seriously Fuck You!!

  91. The Dangerman says:


    I didn’t know the right-wingers wanted that.

    My bad; I wasn’t clear.

    I assume the Right is upset because Taxes go up but there aren’t any Spending cuts (which, at first pass, is pushed out 2 months even on the sequestration; that is what I was referencing). Those cuts can be fought in the Debt Ceiling Cataclysm.

  92. onlymike says:

    @Bruce S: Aaaahhh, i enyoyed reading that. Also, I like how they say that O’Reilly has retained 70% of his audience – meaning, of course, that he’s lost over a quarter …Happy New Year!

  93. Yutsano says:

    @Mnemosyne: Hugs. Hopefully all goes better and hopefully some greedy bean counter didn’t insist upon discharging him too soon.

    @magurakurin: A good old friend just moved to Shihkoku with his wife (she’s from there, I joke with him he married a Southern girl) and you’re reminding me I really really need to drop him a note.

  94. Jeremy says:

    @The Dangerman: The right wing was supposed to get 99 % of what they wanted during the first debt ceiling fight. But they agreed to massive defense cuts and not benefit cuts to SS,medicare, medicaid. So yeah I really trust the emo left to get things right when they have been wrong time and again.

  95. magurakurin says:


    It is like the South in some ways. The weather is similar to the Carolinas and the accent is considered fairly countrified by the big city people in the East, Tokyo. Winters aren’t really warm here, but nights that dip below freezing can be counted on one hand and even they only manage to go down to 30F. Snow is almost nothing.

  96. magurakurin says:

    I’m off to the planet surface now. Going to visit my wife’s uncle in the mountains. Of course the mountains are only 10 miles away. This is a very mountainous island. Happy New Year to all, even to the trolls.

  97. Yutsano says:

    @magurakurin: I have a standing invite to go couch surf. As soon as I can rebuild my damn leave bank I’ll seriously consider doing a massive three week tour of Asia and Australia. I can pretty much couch surf the whole way which will be tons of massive fun!


  98. The Dangerman says:


    Posturing and beating of chests … and the Republicans will shoot themselves in the foot again.

    We can only be so lucky.

    It should be a hell of a fight, but if it ends with their foot being made unwhole, that’s fine by me.

  99. Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    Does anyone know if there are enough votes to get the fiscal cliff deal through the House? I’m thinking that the Tea Jerks will all stamp their feet and refuse to vote for the thing so can Pelosi and Boehner get the bill passed without them?

  100. General Stuck says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate:

    If anyone wants to fathom what a really big deal this is, what has occurred is something that has not happened in circa 25 years. The GOP leadership has cut a deal with the democrats to proactively vote for a marginal tax rate increase. I doubt the wingnuts in the House, or enough of them will rally around the coconut tree to pass it with a republican majority. The bigger question is, is it able to pass muster with enough dem votes to get passed. I don’t know the answer to that, but I suspect it will take some time for Nancy to twist the requisite number of arms to pass it. Except for the 400 thou number being compromised, it looks like a fairly progressive bill, overall. But the House liberals will hate the agreement on the estate tax, that is deeply ideological for them, and most dems, including me.

  101. WaterGirl says:

    @General Stuck: I think it”s all been a game. the purpose of republican delays was so when they vote on this, the bush tax cuts will have expired and they can say they are actually lowering taxes for 200k to 450k.


  102. RaflW says:

    @Rosie Outlook:

    Well, I went off to that party. So I’m late to answer Rosie’s query

    Are those LeCruset pots really worth that price?

    This pot is some other brand, and at least 43 years old, possibly 50 years old. It was my mom’s Coq au Vin pot. It has just the most amazing all-natural cast iron non-stick interior – basically baked in animal fat into the pours of the black iron.

    So I love it. I’m not as sure about the white-enamel interior ones. I’d look for one like this, that’s all orangy (or whatever color suits you) enamel outside, so it’s much easier to care for than all-black cast iron. It’s also very heavy and has a well-fitting kid.

    I love that it’s stove and oven safe.

    And I love that it was my mom’s. I learned to cook in her kitchen. I was 11 when I started making mac and cheese (from the box), and grew from there. I watched how my mom cooked and now I’m a lot like her – use a recipe once or twice, then cook from memory/scratch/smell/taste/touch/experiments.

    I am a messier cook than her. Never took to the clean as you cook method. She’s been gone for 16 years now, but I can still fondly remember cooking side by side with her as a young adult. And tippling maybe just a tad too much white wine during the chop and saute. We had fun and served some great meals to dad and ourselves!

  103. Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @General Stuck:
    Thank you. You’re the person who seems to know process the best. I thought, on reading the deal, that getting it through the House is a dicey proposition. You have, once again, informed my ignorance. Guessing that the only thing to do, after calling our reps, is to cross our fingers.

  104. Mnemosyne says:


    Did you catch that the New Year’s Eve scene (when she leaves Sheldrake in the bar) aired at 12 midnight Eastern time?

    Somebody at TCM was amusing themselves.

  105. barga20 says:

    This has nothing to do with “sci fi nerdery”, but Looper‘s protagonist, played by Josh Gordon Levitt, dies at the end. He dies! So how could he be telling us the story in his own voice! He’s dead! He killed himself! Are we supposed to believe in ghosts or heavenly narrators as well as time travel? Stupid, stupid screenplay!

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