Open Thread

Running around doing laundry and prepping for a trip to the heartland this weekend. You?

69 replies
  1. 1
    Soonergrunt says:

    The heartland? Why the hell would you voluntarily go there (here?)

  2. 2
    👽 Martin says:

    The heartland? You think you live in upscale, urban West Virginia?

  3. 3
    Phylllis says:

    Running around getting ready to head to Nashville this weekend.

  4. 4
    Maude says:

    You’re coming to New Jersey?

  5. 5
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    wondering that no one points this out to them before the programs are printed

    The party did, however, choose the folks who’ll appear on the panel about “successful communication with minorities and women,” and the criticism here seems far more reasonable.
    [The session will have] a female moderator (Rachel Campos-Duffy), a female consultant (Ana Navarro), a female congressman (Rep. Jaime Herrera Buetler), and three congressmen who are neither female nor minorities: Rep. Adam Kinzinger, Rep. Scott Rigell, and Rep. Frank Wolf.
    Yep, three of the five panelists on the House Republicans’ session on “successful communication with minorities and women” are white protestant men. No one on the panel is African American.

    is “protestant” even a qualifier for lack of diversity anymore? If Peter King or another white empenised Catholic were on that panel, would it really be more “diverse” by today’s standards? Not in this aggressively lapsed Catholic’s opinion.

  6. 6
    Juju says:

    Flu. I’ll be lucky if I can deal with life by Monday.

  7. 7
    Linnaeus says:

    First big project at work where I’m the lead. Two weeks to do it. Boss says, “have fun with it!” Oookay….

  8. 8
    Maxwel says:

    Just finished another long drive in the rain, just like every other day these two weeks. Fun!

  9. 9

    For this afternoon’s work avoidance I am tuning up my snowboard. Have a trip to Vail and a few weekends in Mammoth coming up.

    ETA: Good luck with your project Linnaeus

  10. 10
    R-Jud says:

    Finished my course of antibiotics for strep, just in time to contribute to the snow-shoveling efforts tomorrow morning.

  11. 11
    aimai says:

    Picked one kid up from gym, at 4:30, will pick another kid up from theater rehearsal at 7:00, think two out of four of us are coming down with the stomach flu, planning on holing up this weekend except that one child has MLK day chorale at a church and the other has three performances of Midsummer Night’s dream to stage manage.

  12. 12
    WereBear says:

    URGENT to all dog lovers:

    Beneful dog food sickens, kills, dogs

    220 incidents so far, and NO FDA intervention, so please spread the word as much as you can!

  13. 13
    Ted & Hellen says:

    Picked one kid up from gym, at 4:30, will pick another kid up from theater rehearsal at 7:00, think two out of four of us are coming down with the stomach flu, planning on holing up this weekend except that one child has MLK day chorale at a church and the other has three performances of Midsummer Night’s dream to stage manage.

    You seem to be trolling for expressions of interest in your alleged family’s activities.

    Would that be an accurate summary of your comment?

  14. 14
    John says:

    @Ted & Hellen: Boy, you are just a breath of fresh air aren’t you? Always adding to the conversation.

  15. 15
    gogol's wife says:


    Thanks for saving me the trouble.

  16. 16
    Maude says:

    I think I’m about through the plague. I’ll find out tomorrow after I take the bus to the store and back.

  17. 17
    trollhattan says:

    @Ted & Hellen:

    Double-checked and yup, “Open Thread.”

  18. 18
    Linnaeus says:


    Thank you!

  19. 19
    Suzanne says:

    @aimai: I feel you. Mr. Suzanne and I are both still under the weather with some nasty cold, and Spawn the Younger barfed all over her teacher this morning, so I got the “come pick your kid up! NOW!” call. Husband and I have been trying to get as much work done as possible, but this is ludicrous. We both feel like hell on wheels.

  20. 20

    At the risk of incurring the wrath of Ted & Hellen, I’m going to a car club meeting.

  21. 21
    MattR says:

    @WereBear: That is scary and why I feed my dog something that the owners of the brand are willing to eat themselves.

  22. 22
    gogol's wife says:

    @Mustang Bobby:

    Trolling for interest in your so-called car hobby? How dare you? /not being serious

  23. 23
    Ted & Hellen says:

    Now come on, kids, you misunderstand. There has been a lot of discussion here lately about the definition and origins of TROLLING on the intertrons.

    That led me to thinking about “Catfishing” as the youngs call it, and the fact that there are a number of commenters here who attempt to have interpersonal relationships with people they only know thru the intertrons as a series of pixels, and who could very likely not be who they say they are.

    For example, the person who posts as aimai claims to have a very full, busy life packed with kids, activities, church, friends, etc. Why does aimai feel it necessary to bring her personal life, which one would assume to be full of plenty of affirmation and conversation, onto a political blog? And why do other commenters assume the veracity of what she presents?

    I’m not making a value judgement, but I think the dynamics are fascinating.

    For instance: Cole recently insisted I meet him face to face for him to make one of his monthly cash payments of my exhorbitant trolling fee. Turns out Cole is a 76 year old Asian American woman who lives above a tattoo partner in East Albany, NY. She has no pets. She does appear to have a fungal infection, however. Who knew?

    And as we all know since Cole outed me after purchasing a commissioned piece of my artwork, I am a lonely, misanthropic, homosekshul, racist pedophile who paints with crayon on velvet and lives under a bridge.

    But who are YOU people? Really?

    And does any of it matter/

  24. 24
    R-Jud says:

    @Maude: I walked up to the corner shop and back without collapsing/ having a gland burst, so I think I’m well and truly on the mend.

    What bugs me is that my husband seems to be getting it now, and he’s a horrendous snorer at the best of times. It will be worsened a hundredfold with his swollen tonsils flapping away.

  25. 25
    Felonius Monk says:

    Goin’ to the Heartland are you? Hmm, tourist?, missionary?, road warrior?

  26. 26
    Suzanne says:

    Has anyone heard from Gex? How’s she doing?

  27. 27
    Snarla says:

    Dismaying story in the Guardian about the criminalisation of pregnant women in the USA.

    “Hundreds of women have been arrested, convicted, jailed, detained in mental institutions or forced to endure medical procedures as a result of the “criminalisation of pregnancy” over the last four decades, a new report has found.”

  28. 28
    WaterGirl says:

    @R-Jud: I have it on good authority that there should be no snow shoveling until 48 hours after final antibiotic is taken. Do you need a note for your husband?

  29. 29
    WaterGirl says:

    @Suzanne: This is the last thing I saw, on Open Thead: Tis of Thee:

    Gex Says:

    It is striking to me, how much I look forward to getting back to Balloon-Juice to get to spill it all and reconnect with you.

    I made the call to extubate about five hours ago. True to form, this woman who has fought through challenges few others would survive, much less win, is hanging in there. They never know how it will go after they turn off ventilator assist, but I think everyone universally thought it wouldn’t take long. She hasn’t eaten in three weeks, the blood cultures showed a new infection, and she’s got metastisized cancer that has had free reign with a compromised immune system.

    Instead, she started breathing more regularly, BP stayed okay, and her pulse ox is consistently at or above 94%. I’ve told her I’m ready to let her go. I’ve challenged her to fight her will to fight if need be. But it’s going to be a while. I briefly went to find a place to nap but quickly realized that there may not be a level of exhaustion that would allow me to sleep.

    Did I tell you about the response we are getting from our circle? Kate is a stand up comic whose idol is Maria Bamford. The comedy club in the Mall of America hosts an one mic night on Tuesdays. Next Tuesday’s show has been turned in to a tribute show and Maria is flying in to headline it. Maria’s presence led to a write up in the St.Paul Pioneer Press, and a show that is lucky to get 25 attendees sold 160 tickets by lunch time. There is at least one more tribute show that has been announced. When I learned the paper wanted names to contact for a follow up article I posted on Facebook, “It’s normal to need to appoint a director of media relations in these situations, right?”

    I don’t know if words can describe this experience. The worst thing to ever happen to me is triggering such an outpouring of love and support (I’m including you guys) that is immeasurable. Every ‘like’, every message, every person who has taken charge to help me with something…

    I’m not one to experience or process emotion in real time all that much. It’s all tucked inside where I can’t get it yet or waiting in the shadows to pounce. If the cliche is true, this will continue to hurt like hell, but it will diminish somewhat, and I will learn to live with it. And then I realized today that all this awesome love and support? I will remember it forever and I feel that feeling will grow over time as I look back on it.

    I was able to support her in pursuing her passion for the last four years with no obstacles. I know she saw during my actions during the cancer fight how much I love her that I know there will be no regrets about things unsaid. And then this reaction to her and to us as a couple? This is the best worst thing that can happen to a person. I am grateful and I feel lucky that I will have peace because of these things. Later. Still a lot of tough stuff to go through. It’s not soon, but someday I will have to go back to the house and be there without her.

    Don’t know what else to add. Oh yeah. I highly recommend getting a lot of comic friends before you have a tragedy. I’m not sure you should laugh THIS much at times like this. But it’s great.

    January 17th, 2013 at 3:50 am

  30. 30
    WereBear says:

    Here is the complaint section for consumer affairs about Beneful:

    I do think the worst of the giant corporations. Because they took no responsiblity for the melamine scandal of 2007. And I got a lot of heartfelt letters about that.

  31. 31
    WereBear says:

    @WaterGirl: Thanks for the update.

  32. 32
    gogol's wife says:


    Thank you, I had not seen that. This was posted at 10:05 AM today on the Michelle Bachmann thread:

    “Thanks for asking about us guys.

    She was extubated last night around 9 PM. Since then she’s been pretty stable. Given all she’s been through to this point, I think most of the medical staff thought she’d go fast. But her BP is still strong, her pulse ox is good, core temp is normalizing, and breathing seems smoother if not normal.

    There’s no recovery from this. As much as my emotional mind is wondering why we don’t reinstate the antibiotics, the truth is we wouldn’t want her to awake to deal with the pain and misery of her current situation, then have to deal with a liver cancer that has been raging untreated all this time.

    It’s like we’re a living example of public policy failures. Can’t get married. Can pull the tubes, but can’t assist either. We just have to keep using up medical resources in a hospital short on beds and nurses. And at some point the hospital and medical insurance wash their hands of you and you need to pay for hospice, which runs hundreds of dollars per day. How am I supposed to afford that? And I’m solidly middle class with no kids.

    It wasn’t hard to decide to extubate. It was hard to have to pick the time and say, “Do it now.” I wish that could have been the end instead of sitting here and watching her die over hours, maybe days.

    So right now, it’s pretty much the same on day 15 at the hospital.”

  33. 33
    Suzanne says:

    @WaterGirl: @gogol’s wife: Thanks for the updates, y’all. It’s funny how we can think so much about someone we’ve never met,

  34. 34
    Joel says:

    I know this isn’t as fun as insulting people who shop at Whole Foods, but there’s this:

    Republicans basically acknowledge that gerrymandering is a crucial part of their electoral strategy.

  35. 35
    Machine-Gun Preacher (formerly Ben Franklin) says:


    Thanks for that. After the last China syndrome, we switched to cooking turkey and veggies for our heeler. He’s 14 years young, and we were just now thinking of switching back to dry.

  36. 36
    redshirt says:

    I spent the afternoon stuffing insulation into my chimney. What a freaking heat loss that thing is, as I knew it would be. I was not going to have a fireplace at all – for this reason – but everyone told me I had to have one, for resell value. I grudgingly agreed, but damn! I see dollars flying up the flue.

  37. 37
    Ted & Hellen says:


    It’s funny how we can think so much about someone we’ve never met,


  38. 38
    Rosie Outlook says:

    On antibiotics for walking pneumonia. Been sick for over a week and wish it would walk the hell on out of here.

    I may as well confess. I am really Stephen King, here observing the trolls to gather material for my next book.

  39. 39
    Ted & Hellen says:

    I am really Stephen King, here observing the trolls to gather material for my next book.

    Could well be.

    I’m Dan Brown. My next novel centers on a group of gullible blog commenters who prefer their Internet fantasy relationships to those in meat space. Overarching themes of tribalism, self righteousness, selective credulousness, and willful stupidity.

    Your nym is one of the primary characters. Aimai too. Watergirl is actually a Landboy.

  40. 40
    Birthmarker says:

    @Felonius Monk: Sex positions?

  41. 41
    YellowJournalism says:

    @WereBear: Dammit! That’s the only thin my picky pup will eat! She’s been eating it for years. Anyone know if those risks are associated with food sold in Canada?

  42. 42
    Josie says:

    @WereBear: Thanks for the warning. My two doggies have eaten their last serving of Beneful or any Purina product, for that matter. I can’t believe they are not reacting properly to these reported problems.

  43. 43
    toned says:

    You’re going to Stater Brothers ?

  44. 44
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Ted & Hellen:

    “Alleged” family??

  45. 45
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Ted & Hellen:

    I’m not making a value judgement


  46. 46
    Ted & Hellen says:


    “Alleged” family??


    Do you know Aimai in the real world?

    If not, why would you assume that she is telling the truth? Or me, or anyone else on here, for that matter?

    Except that since Cole outed me when he bought the artwork from me, we know that I am a lonely, misanthropic, homosekshul, racist pedophile who lives under a bridge and paints on velvet with melted crayons to make ends meet.

    What do we know about YOU?

  47. 47
    red dog says:

    All you guys are pikers compared to the Notre Dame linebacker Te’o who’s fake on line girlfriend died to inspire a football team. The media slurped it all up for three months. Virtual funeral??? Maybe he was such a jerk she died to break up with him.

  48. 48
    Ted & Hellen says:

    @red dog:


  49. 49
    SiubhanDuinne says:


    It’s funny how we can think so much about someone we’ve never met,

    By orders of magnitude, this is the best thing about this community, and why I’ve been coming back many times a day for the past, what?, five years at least.

  50. 50
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Ted & Hellen:

    What do we know about YOU?


  51. 51
    Josie says:

    @Ted & Hellen: The only thing we learned from John Cole was that he commissioned some art work from you that he really liked. Everything else you told us yourself, and it is less than fascinating. You must need entertainment badly to be so willing to rain on everyone else’s parade.

  52. 52
    DaveInOz says:

    I’m off to the Australian Open tennis tonight. I’ll be watching the Berdych-Melzer match but the Venus Williams-Sharapove match on Rod laver should be good.

  53. 53
    Ksmiami says:

    @WereBear: I adopted a husky rescue and feed him homemade with some high quality canned foods and safe raw meaty bones … Just too much crap in commercial kibble

  54. 54
    Ksmiami says:

    @WereBear: I adopted a husky rescue and feed him homemade with some high quality canned foods and safe raw meaty bones … Just too much crap in commercial kibble

  55. 55
    Ted & Hellen says:


    Oh you silly goose. Thru Cole you got my real name. Hello?

  56. 56
    Ted & Hellen says:


    What parade? Maybe everyone on here is telling the complete truth about their Meat Space lives. But maybe not. More likely some are, some aren’t.

    Surely you already knew that.

    So how is saying it out loud raining on a parade?

  57. 57
    eemom says:

    Speaking of the cyber/real dichotomy, I was thinking about organizing a DC area meetup Sunday or Monday, since some out of town folks as well will likely be here for the inauguration.

    As an extra added attraction, we could then report back to T&H re Whether We Are What We Seem.

  58. 58
    S. Holland says:

    My thoughts are with you Gex

  59. 59
    scav says:

    @eemom: just remember, don’t use any wavelengths while doing so.

  60. 60
    Ted & Hellen says:


    As an extra added attraction, we could then report back to T&H re Whether We Are What We Seem.

    How would I know you were telling the truth?

    Hey, I’m driving to Richmond, VA and back to boston over five or six days beginning next Wednesday. Hold up on the mtg and I’ll join you.

    Nah…haters here would probably assassinate me.

  61. 61
    burnspbesq says:

    In nine minutes, I’m watching Duke pound the stuffing out of Georgia Tech.

    After that, I have to put together a presentation designed to convince somebody that it’s in their best interest to accept a settlement offer from the IRS that requires them to write a check for just north of a million bucks.

  62. 62

    @YellowJournalism: I have been using Kumpi for the past 10 yrs or so. They deliver. Expensive, but the feeding size is smaller so it evens out.

  63. 63
    burnspbesq says:

    @Ted & Hellen:

    haters here would probably assassinate me

    Unlikely. Would require far more time and energy than you’re worth, Mr. & Ms. Boring and Tiresome.

  64. 64
    Neutron Flux says:

    @burnspbesq: Sucks to be you. Pro bono?

  65. 65
    Rosie Outlook says:

    For decades I’ve worked in an industry where I talk to people all over the world, including one fellow whose day job financed his orchid hybridizing. Lots of fascinating folks out there. Anyway, we’d eventually meet at conferences, and no one’s face ever matches their phone voice, so their typing probably doesn’t go with the face either.

  66. 66
    Ted & Hellen says:


    And yet you commented.

  67. 67
    burnspbesq says:

    @Ted & Hellen:

    You took two hours and two minutes to think about it, and that’s all you came up with?

  68. 68
    notgonnahappen says:

    Nothing to say about the Lance Armstrong confession? Need I remind you that you were defending him saying the ‘rumors’ about doping were a smear campaign or some other bullshit.

    When was the last time you were right about something?

  69. 69
    Ted & Hellen says:


    Don’t really just sit here at the computer between comments…waiting.

    Do you?

Comments are closed.