Open Thread

Just saw this on that facebook thingie, and it made me laugh out loud:


121 replies
  1. 1
    Rex Everything says:


    I’m not going to be using the term Obot anymore. It ruffles too many feathers, and also gives the impression that I’m anti-Obama when I’m not, particularly.

    So from now on I’m referring to Obots as “24-Hour Party People.”

  2. 2
    Violet says:

    Made me laugh out loud too. Words are so long in German.

  3. 3
    PsiFighter37 says:

    I still can’t believe Weiner was stupid enough to keep on sexting after he left Congress. I am pretty damn sure that Eliot Spitzer was smart enough to never sleep with another hooker after he got caught.

    I guess what I’m trying to say that there’s never been any real evidence that Carlos Danger was ever a real intellect, and this pretty much confirms it.

    As an NYC voter, I’m pretty stuck on who to vote for in the Democratic primary. Maybe de Blasio?! Ugh.

  4. 4
    NickT says:

    My struggle with the German tongue began in mid-October and lasted nearly the full academic year. As the most prominent figure in Hitler studies in North America, I had long tried to conceal the fact that I did not know German. I could not speak or read it, could not understand the spoken word or begin to put the simplest sentence on paper. The least of my Hitler colleagues knew some German; others were either fluent in the language or reasonably conversant. No one could major in Hitler studies at the College-on-the-Hill without a minimum of one year of German. I was living, in short, on the edge of a landscape of vast shame.
    The German tongue. Fleshy, warped, spit-spraying, purplish and cruel. One eventually had to confront it. Wasn’t Hitler’s own struggle to express himself in German the crucial subtext of his massive ranting autobiography, dictated in a fortress prison in the Bavarian hills? Grammar and syntax. The man may have felt himself imprisoned in more ways than one.
    I’d made several attempts to learn German, serious probes into origins, structures, roots. I sensed the deathly power of the language. I wanted to speak it well, use it as a charm, a protective device. The more I shrank from learning actual words, rules and pronunciation, the more important it seemed that I go forward. What we are reluctant to touch often seems the very fabric of our salvation. But the basic sounds defeated me, the harsh spurting northernness of the words and syllables, the command delivery. Something happened between the back of my tongue and the roof of my mouth that made a mockery of my attempts to sound German words.
    I was determined to try again.
    Because I’d achieved high professional standing, because my lectures were well attended and my articles printed in the major journals, because I wore an academic gown and dark glasses day and night whenever I was on campus, because I carried two hundred and thirty pounds on a six-foot three-inch frame and had big hands and feet, I knew my German lessons would have to be secret.
    I contacted a man not affiliated with the college, someone Murray Jay Siskind had told me about. They were fellow boarders in the green-shingled house on Middlebrook. The man was in his fifties, a slight shuffle in his walk. He had thinning hair, a bland face and wore his shirtsleeves rolled up to his forearms, revealing thermal underwear beneath.
    His complexion was of a tone I want to call flesh-colored. Howard Dunlop was his name. He said he was a former chiropractor but didn’t offer a reason why he was no longer active and didn’t say when he’d learned German, or why, and something in his manner kept me from asking.
    We sat in his dark crowded room at the boarding house. An ironing board stood unfolded at the window. There were chipped enamel pots, trays of utensils set on a dresser. The furniture was vague, foundling. At the borders of the room were the elemental things. An exposed radiator, an army-blanketed cot. Dunlop sat at the edge of a straight chair, intoning generalities of grammar. When he switched from English to German, it was as though a cord had been twisted in his larynx. An abrupt emotion entered his voice, a scrape and gargle that sounded like the stirring of some beast’s ambition. He gaped at me and gestured, he croaked, he verged on strangulation. Sounds came spewing from the base of his tongue, harsh noises damp with passion. He was only demonstrating certain basic pronunciation patterns but the transformation in his face and voice made me think he was making a passage between levels of being.
    I sat there taking notes.

    (Don DeLillo, White Noise, chapter 8)

  5. 5
    Baud says:

    I’m thinking of running for political office. What’s the dumbest scandal I can engage in to ruin my candidacy?

  6. 6
    Nerdlinger says:

    Old Conan skit in his NBC days.

  7. 7
  8. 8
    Emerald says:

    John, sorry to be obsessive about this, but have you found a home for


    I know you were going to try, but how did it go?

    Many many thanks!

    (VIELEN DANK!!!)

  9. 9
    Comrade Mary says:

    NOT TRUE! German is a very pretty language. English spoken with a German accent is very pretty.

    Proof 1.

    Proof 2.

    Proof 3.

  10. 10
    Comrade Mary says:


  11. 11
    lamh36 says:

    @PsiFighter37: I didn’t watch the press conference, so I hate to quote Tweety, but did Anthony really admit or was it implied that he sent text/pics to complete strangers and not just consenting minds? If so, w/o consent isn’t it like basically flashing/streaking some ole ladies in the park.

  12. 12
    pacem appellant says:

    @NickT: Bless you. Awesome! That book is re-read in my household once a year.

  13. 13
    Anne Laurie says:

    @PsiFighter37: To be honest, just about every political thing that happens in NYC makes me glad I got the hell out of there at the first opportunity (born in Manhattan, raised in the Bronx, escaped to college in the Midwest and never even considered moving back).

  14. 14
    Nerdlinger says:

    @Comrade Mary: From dick jokes to this… Oh lord, that just depressed the fuck out of me :(

  15. 15
    Comrade Mary says:

    @Nerdlinger: Watch the speed date (the third one). It will make you happy.

  16. 16
    Violet says:

    @Baud: Being a Republican.

  17. 17
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:


    Batmobile; Fleidermausmannewaggen.

    I took the good time and trouble to learn to speak Deutsch. It’s an interesting language and becoming fluent in it informed my appreciation of English (My mother tongue). Learning another language cannot help but make you a better speaker of your own.

    Deutsch has the weakness and strength of its affinity for forming compound nouns. The above mentioned is no exception. As for the language’s treatment of case, gender, past participle, and other grammatical oddities, damn.

    ETA: It’s no wonder that back in my day one of my first textbooks was Die Leiden Des Jungen Werthers.

  18. 18
    PsiFighter37 says:

    @lamh36: I didn’t watch. Mainly because I’d spend most of the time wondering if Huma Abedin has her head on straight for staying with him.

    @Anne Laurie: It’s a shitshow. Smart money says that Quinn should win this thing handily, but ironically, she’s probably the most hated candidate by the base here.

  19. 19
    NickT says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate:

    Now, if yer wants a real compound noun, a mighty, unfolding, teak-based, steel and chrome-enhanced compound noun, why, bless yer, yer wants Sanskrit, not any of that tacky modern German rubbish.

  20. 20
    Violet says:

    @PsiFighter37: Maybe Noun Verb 911 should run again.

  21. 21
    Mr Stagger Lee says:

    According to CNN, we hunted the Dildo into extinction. Why is man such a cruel crerature?
    Speaking of German, I was taught German in the Army by a guy who was from Hungary, bad enough speaking Deutch with an midwest Ohio accent but with a touch Budapest, must been fun with the Germans.

  22. 22
  23. 23
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:


    Topped. And grateful for being reminded of Sanskrit.

  24. 24
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:


    Not a stitch. Say again: binhthuy71at

  25. 25
    NotMax says:

    Case in point: 63-Letter German Word Becomes Obsolete

    (Related article from Der Spiegel here.)

  26. 26
    PsiFighter37 says:

    @Violet: Pretty sure New Yorkers hate that shithead even more nowadays. I once saw him stumping for some statewide GOP candidate in Grand Central in the morning while walking to work and had to resist the urge to pop off a few invectives his way.

  27. 27
  28. 28
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @Mr Stagger Lee:

    My own teacher, the estimable Frau Hodjera, who had crawled under the East/West wire and found asylum here in the US, always said that I sprach with a Berlin accent. Considering the number of times that I’d been to Berlin (Zero) I felt that was an achievement.

  29. 29
    NickT says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate:

    But did you tell her you were not a Berliner?

  30. 30
    Randy P says:

    I’ve spent a lot of time with German lately. I’m kind of a language dilettante and very frustrated that I’m not fluent in any of them, but I’m at least competent in the other languages I’ve tried. Every time I feel like I’ve made some progress in German I open up a newspaper or magazine or something and realize I don’t know two out of three words and feel all depressed again.

    I tried focusing exclusively on German this summer with the hope that I could get over whatever hurdle it is. But I’m still way, way down on the learning curve for some reason.

    I refuse to believe that it has anything to do with being over 50. I am a lifelong learner and passionate about my belief that you can always, ALWAYS learn. It’s just something about German and the size of the vocabulary or something. I don’t have any problem getting around trains and restaurants, just reading and having a normal conversation.

  31. 31
    j says:

    I was taught Latin and French in elementary school. When I got to High School I elected to take Spanish (because I thought it was going to be easy).

    My Spanish teacher describes other languages as such:

    English is ridiculous
    French sounds like you have allergies
    Italian sounds like you are singing

    And German sounds like dogs barking.

  32. 32
  33. 33
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:


    No idea, bro. Send me a straight up email with the subject “Dennis.” That’s my actual given name and I’ll have to kill a lot of people if Snowden reveals it to the world.

    Anyone other than raven on BJ who addresses me as “Dennis” is also in for some shit.

  34. 34
    NickT says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate:

    What with you and John Cole’s imminently renamed cat, it’s getting damn hard to keep track of who is or isn’t who these days around here.

  35. 35
  36. 36
    Nerdlinger says:

    @Comrade Mary: Still depressed… I would’ve kidnapped that little bugger.

  37. 37
    Fluke bucket says:

    Saw where 26% will vote for Liz Cheney. 1% away from that magical number.

  38. 38
  39. 39
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:


    A jelly donut? Ach, nein. I learned the language during JFK’s truncated presidency. By the time he gave the “Ich bin ein Berliner” speech I was already capable of wondering just what the hell he meant.I asked my teacher and she answered “He’s a politician, not a linguist.”

  40. 40
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    Yo. Worked. Welcome aboard!

    EDIT: Incoming? Aw shit, not again.

  41. 41
    lamh36 says:

    @PsiFighter37: Yeah, it’s her life and her marriage and she obviously love her husband. I get that whole “stand by your man” shit, but there was no need for that woman to be there, except that this time, she was essentially speaking/being used as a character witness. I reminded me of the John Edwards fiasco, and Elizabeth Edwards, RIP, and her willingness to let John Edwards keep on campaigning with her at his side and the whole time, she knew about the affair and the child. Yet they STILL decided to go ahead and run for Prez again.

    But again, I mostly don’t care, it’s her life and her marriage and her husband, but I do feel bad for you and your NYC voters with this mess

  42. 42
    Michele C says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate: not even if we quote “Holy Grail” in doing so?

  43. 43
    Michele C says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate: not even if we quote “Holy Grail” in doing so?

  44. 44
    raven says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate: I think we had already communicated at some point.

  45. 45
    Redshirt says:

    @NickT: I AM (possibly) SPARTACUS!

  46. 46
    PeakVT says:

    What’s so bad about Quinn? She was leading before Wiener popped up.

  47. 47
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @Michele C:

    And the LORD spake, saying, “First shalt thou take out the Holy Pin, then shalt thou count to three, no more, no less. Three shall be the number thou shalt count, and the number of the counting shall be three. Four shalt thou not count, neither count thou two, excepting that thou then proceed to three. Five is right out. Once the number three, being the third number, be reached, then lobbest thou thy Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch towards thy foe, who being naughty in My sight, shall snuff it.”

  48. 48
    James E. Powell says:

    @Rex Everything:

    So from now on I’m referring to Obots as “24-Hour Party People.”

    Cool. Love that movie. Especially the soundtrack.

  49. 49
    NickT says:


    My name is Maximus Decimus Meridius, commander of the Armies of the North, General of the Felix Legions and loyal servant to the TRUE emperor, Marcus Aurelius. Father to a murdered son, husband to a murdered wife. And I will have my vengeance, in this life or the next.

    But you can call me Nick.

  50. 50
    JPL says:

    @Fluke bucket: You know there is a creature in the Cole household only 5 digits behind that number…

  51. 51
    Scotius says:

    @Randy P:
    Have you tried watching German television online?
    A lot of their shows have optional German subtitles which makes following along easier.

  52. 52

    @Redshirt: I thought we are all DougJ.

  53. 53
    👾 Martin says:


    but I do feel bad for you and your NYC voters with this mess

    Don’t. It wouldn’t be NYC without this mess.

  54. 54
    Roger Moore says:


    But you can call me Nick.

    Really? It’s OK to call you by your Nickname?

  55. 55
    JPL says:

    @lamh36: The press conference was odd. She is an accomplished woman in her own right and certainly could walk out now.

  56. 56
  57. 57
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate:

    No problem, Dennis.

    /signed, raven on BJ

  58. 58
    quannlace says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate:

    Sam Gamgee: “Dwarf must be a jaw-breaker of a language”

  59. 59
  60. 60
    Mary G says:

    Just got back from seeing “The Way, Way Back.” Didn’t expect to like it much, but in the summer pickings are slim and I wanted to hang out with my movie-crazy friend. I loved it and recommend it highly.

  61. 61
    raven says:

    @JPL: I don’t think it’s realistic to try to understand other people’s relationships.

  62. 62
    lamh36 says:

    @👾 Martin: I hear ya. I’m from NOLA, home of “Dollar Bill” Jefferson, “Diaper” Dave Vitter, David “Grand-Wizard” Dukes and of course Edwin Edwards.

    We know from scandalous pols, but this is more embarrassing than anything I remember from our guys, well except Vitter

  63. 63
    NickT says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate:

    Can we call you Bosie instead?

  64. 64
    JPL says:

    @raven: Depends on the meaning of realistic. Ha…

  65. 65
    lamh36 says:

    @raven: So true. I have family members who I know well and love and they have some f-ed up relationships too. It’s just boggles my mind that’s all.

    @PsiFighter37: I will say this, it was very reminiscent of Hilary Clinton circa Monica L/Gennifer Flowers/Paula Jones, etc.

  66. 66
    lamh36 says:

    Ohh, BTW I have seen Pacific Rim and I am happy!!! I loved it. I fully admit that I had to interest in this movie until I saw that Idris Elba was in it and even after seeing the trailer awhile back ago, I still had NO idea what the hell the movie was even about, but THEY HAD ME AT IDRIS ELBA…lol! Even without Idris in it, I still thoroughly enjoyed myself. If you are into sci-fi, Godzilla, Asian monster films, then you will love this movie. If you like huge robots beating the crap out of “alien” monster, you’ll love it. I swear I think I must have been a teenage boy in another life, cause I admit I loved it. It filmed beautifully and the fight sequences were definitely on an EPIC scale. Oh and Idris…I’m sure I don’t need to say more. Anyone, guys go see it, ladies, if you’re not into sci-fi or monsters, skip it.

  67. 67
    kdaug says:

    Wait, Cole’s naming the cat Dennis?

    I mean, it’s his business and all, and I ain’t one to judge, but dude, I gotta say, that’s kinda weak.

  68. 68
    dp says:

    OK, this is really surreal. I’m in a hotel in San Francisco, on the 40th floor, and I have the window cracked (because I like it cool). Every two or three minutes, I hear the voice of a faraway guy yell, “Oooohhh, fuck you!” He’s done it about twenty times so far.

    I’m so tempted to go downstairs and find him and whoever it is he’s talking to!

  69. 69
    raven says:

    @lamh36: Does Idris use his native British accent?

  70. 70
    Comrade Mary says:

    @kdaug: Yes — Flula! I love him!

  71. 71
    dr. luba says:

    A friend of mine who grew up in Mallorca, which is full of German tourists, claims that German is not spoken, it is spat.

  72. 72
    lamh36 says:

    Loved this pic so much, I’m posting it again.

    POTUS hosted the
    Timely pic of POTUS(h/t @petesouza ) Dedicating this to Anthony Weiner.

  73. 73
    JPL says:

    @lamh36: What I find interesting about Bill and Hillary is that they show emotion when together, whether positive or negative. There are feelings. The same was true today with Huma and Anthony. Raven was correct with his comment.

  74. 74
    lamh36 says:

    @raven: Yes ma’am! And it was awesome.

    Unlike the voices of David Beckham and the like, Idris’ accent is even betta thanks to the deep timbre I

    I’ll admit, as much as I love Colin Firth, if I had a choice of hearing sweet nothings from Colin or Idris in a British accent, I’d take Idris any day…lol

  75. 75
    cathyx says:

    Thank you so much for this video John. I just came from a trip to Germany to visit relatives and I had to pass this along. So funny and so true.

  76. 76
    NickT says:


    Either that or Cole has castrated He Who Must Not Be Named.

  77. 77
    raven says:

    I’m going to be posting this shit out of this.

    CLARKSTON, Ga. — Georgia emerged as a battleground state Monday in the fight for control of the U.S. Senate as Democrat Michelle Nunn announced plans to run for her father’s old seat, joining a crowded field of Republican contenders and setting off what will likely be a fiercely contested and costly race.

  78. 78
    raven says:

    @lamh36: He was awesome in Luther. We saw the big mouthed crazy woman (Ruth Wilson in Small Island) in another role and it was weird!

  79. 79
    J.Ty says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate: We read Die Leiden des Junges Werthers too, in, um, Pillars of German Literature or some such class, auf Deutsch, of course. And this was only ten years ago or so. We also read Der Tod in Venedig and some weird homoerotic boarding school slash thing from the romantic era. Now that I think of it, that class was kind of gay…

  80. 80
    lamh36 says:

    Some more news for the ladies (or the dudes, my LGBFF absolutely loved the movie):

    Magic Mike Coming To Broadway!!!

  81. 81
    Comrade Mary says:

    @James E. Powell: Yes, great soundtrack, and great cameos. (I couldn’t find the Mark E. Smith cameo, so this scene will have to do.)

  82. 82
    Kiko says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate: My German teacher, who was from Munich and involved with the Advanced Placement test committee, made a particular point of disabusing all of his students of the “jelly doughnut” urban legend.

    My German grandparents and great-grandparents, on the other hand, were convinced the whole thing was a plot by conservatives to smear their president.

    In any case, if you understand German, you know it isn’t true!

  83. 83
    JPL says:

    @raven: Ain’t gonna happen. All the repub candidate has to do is run against the black man in office.

  84. 84
    raven says:

    @Comrade Mary: Here’s the cameo you were looking for.

    Wave your hand in the air
    like you don’t care

  85. 85
    Amir Khalid says:

    “Entschuldigunk!” “Schmetterlink!” Es scheint mir, unser Deutsche Freund hat viel zu viel Kaffee getrunken.

  86. 86
    raven says:

    @JPL: I’ll be goddamn. There’s a time to get it on and this is. I’d rather fight and lose.

  87. 87
  88. 88
    NickT says:


    But do you think Dennis would mind if we referred to him as Dennis when talking among ourselves?

  89. 89
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @NickT: @efgoldman: @NickT:
    Fuckers. Should have known better. And yes, I like all of you too much.

  90. 90
    PsiFighter37 says:

    @efgoldman: The way I think it operates (and I could be wrong) is that the top 2 candidates in the state go to a runoff if no one in the general election gets over 50%. I still think there’s a primary to determine who gets to duke it out in the general…so, in reality, this has no impact on the standard R v. D race.

  91. 91
    David Koch says:

    @PsiFighter37: you’re a smart guy, can you explain to us non new yorkers why Quinn is so unpopular.

  92. 92
    raven says:

    @efgoldman: Not for the Senate I don’t think.

  93. 93
    Comrade Mary says:

    @raven: I guess that qualifies as both wonderful and frightening.

  94. 94
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate:
    Does this mean you’ll be changing your nym to Dennis?

  95. 95
    Jay C says:

    One of the pithier comments about the German language is attributed to Holy Roman Emperor Charles V (who ruled most of Europe in his day, AND the New World to boot);

    “I speak French to men, Italian to women, Spanish to God, and German to my horse

    And, somehow, one has to think that his horse got the best deal….

  96. 96
    PsiFighter37 says:

    @raven: They have some kind of runoff – Jim Martin forced that asshole Saxby Chambliss into a runoff in 2008 (only to get creamed by 15% a few weeks later). But I’m also quite sure they have a primary, so I think the 50% rule only applies in the general.

    Maybe they changed the law since then (it doesn’t seem that smart, as all it serves to do is marginalize 3rd parties that could have an impact on the election), but I have no clue.

  97. 97
    Comrade Mary says:

    @Jay C: Unpopular opinion ahead: I know that French, Spanish and Italian are generally regarded as romantic, mellifluous languages. I think they’re pretty enough, all frilly and such, but not special, not beautiful. Boring, really.

    German, on the other hand, can be utterly sweet and charming. Its gentle, murmuring elements sound all the better for the contrast of a little bit of harshness here and there.

  98. 98
    NickT says:

    @David Koch:

    She pushed through the fix allowing Bloomberg to evade the term limit, she’s been anti paid sick-leave, and anti animal rights legislation.

  99. 99
    Jay C says:

    @David Koch:

    Not PsyFighter37: but in a nutshell, Christine Quinn is highly unpopular in NYC (to the extent that large numbers of voters are hugely indifferent to electing her or not) mainly because she is seen as as: 1) the [Democratic] “Machine” candidate, i.e., a hack: but, at the same time (seemingly paradoxically), Mike Bloomberg’s bitch: and thus just a potential continuation of Bloombergian policy.

    NYC’s politics are a fascinating subject: too bad there’s not enough pixels here to go into it too thoroughly…

  100. 100
    j says:

    @Comrade Mary:

    OMG! Re: clip #2

    “Gates of Heaven” is one of my favorite movies ever! There are so many great scenes; like the stoner son who tends the business and serenades the “residents” with him shredding licks on his Fender at sunset (and all during his interview it sure looks like he’s got a Ganja plant in a flower pot on the window sill, look at the reflection in the TV set)..

    And his older brother who has as his main goal in life to be the best Christian AmWay salesman ever in the valley!

    But the guy who said good-bye to “Trooper” was my favorite. Sure, his loyal dog dies, and his wife didn’t really seem to care, but he was really sad, but after the movie was being let out I overheard someone saying “did you see that leisure suit that the old guy was wearing” It looked just like that Armstrong roll-on vinyl floor that we had in our kitchen when I was a kid”.

    Some scenes, for the unfamiliar:

    So much for the small business owners. Some developer wanted to build an office park / apartment complex / strip mall waste of land miles from anything but near an expressway. (so cars would be a must) and the people who ran a pet cemetery were forced out of their land because a cloverleaf was needed there , and all the grieving families had to make other arrangements to move their buried pets, while the cemetery owners and their kids were scattered to the wind to fend for themselves.

    All because some developer needed an exit ramp, and Eminent Domain ruled, because the exit was deemed “for the public good”.

    Both Ebert & Siskel gave it 4 stars (before they trademarked their thumbs).

  101. 101
    David Koch says:


    I guess what I’m trying to say that there’s never been any real evidence that Carlos Danger was ever a real intellect

    And what does that say about the liberal blogosphere that absolutely loved him.

    Here was a guy who clawed his way to office using ugly race baiting and stabbing renters in the back, who cheer-led the destruction of Iraq, who was a disgusting Likudite who smeared Rabin, who never passed a single bill in 13 years of Congress, and who refused to join the progressive caucus because he was afraid of being labeled liberal. All that, but the vaunted liberal blogosphere just adored him because he would feed them empty words.

  102. 102
    catclub says:

    Ezra Klein thinks Larry Summer is frontrunner for Fed Chairman.
    I hope his reporting is wrong.

  103. 103
    Phoenician in a time of Romans says:


    In honour of the new royal baby, and in light of having just spent the last week or so obsessively playing “7 Grand Steps”, my advice to the royal family is this:

    i, Avoid having more children, preferably by avoiding having Kate and William in the same area together. If they spend time together, they’re likely to wind up with kids, and any more than two is a real pain. Abortion and contraception shall not be discussed.

    ii, If you do have children, either educate them all together or, if you cannot afford this, let them spend their time playing. Royals in particular cannot afford to educate an entire family often, since they are so busy chasing off after inventions or heroic quests. Hiring tutors shall not be discussed.

    iii, If you do manage to get the kids educated, they can come in useful working to support their parents while said parents are off chasing inventions and heroism. Child slavery laws shall not be discussed.

    iv, Training siblings in unwanted noble professions can be a good way to keep them busy while your heir is busy being educated as a ruler. This may not apply to the Windsors, since it usually involves nobles promoted to rulership within their lifetime. Universities shall not be discussed.

    v, If the kids wind up hating each other, this can be trouble. The next King may well find his treasury being raided by annoyed siblings. Accountants and auditors shall not be discussed.

    vi, And if your king winds up getting eaten by a crocodile, a sibling can be very useful. Living somewhere that does not have huge toothy amphibians waiting for the tardy shall not be discussed.

    vii, “7 Grand Steps” is a obsessively good and deep strategy game hiding underneath a single clean interface and apparently simple moves.

  104. 104
    Redshirt says:


    I don’t think it’s realistic to try to understand other people’s relationships.

    It may not be realistic, but I find it is important to try and understand everything. You may fail, you may get it wrong, but as long as you’re not passing judgment, understanding – even the effort of understanding – is always a Good.

  105. 105
    PsiFighter37 says:

    @Jay C: Eh, I don’t feel like she’s a hack – her background certainly isn’t one of someone who’s been in elected politics her whole life – but she certainly doesn’t have the activist cred that I feel like a lot of people here in NYC care about.

    The second point is more valid; she’s basically been seen as an extension of Bloomberg given how closely they’ve worked together. She was also instrumental in helping pass the term limits ban, which is always going to be a sore sticking point for liberals. There’s a reason that some no-name like Bill Thompson came within 4% of beating Bloomberg despite basically having no organizational backing and getting outspent at a stupid pace – Democrats HATED the one-time term limits bullshit.

    (not that Thompson’s a great guy or anything. Alfonse fucking D’Amato is helping fund his campaign this time around, which is why the choices suck. Quinn’s a tool, Weiner’s a fool/idiot/not really a progressive, Thompson is a sellout, and Liu is crooked as shit. That leaves me, at least right now, with de Blasio as the least of all evils, but he’s done nothing notable as public advocate that makes me excited. But to be honest, I may end up voting for Quinn, mainly because she at least comes off as competent. No one else convinces me they have the chops for the job.

    Weren’t primaries supposed to be where you could be excited to vote FOR someone?)

    @David Koch: I never was that huge a fan of him, just like I’ve never really thought much of Grayson…blow a lot of smoke up your ass and deliver nothing on the legislative front.

    @catclub: Obama should be smarter than this by now. He should just promote Janet Yellen and keep that asshole Summers as far away from Washington as he can.

  106. 106
    raven says:

    @Redshirt: You are right, I used the wrong word. Figure out I guess. (2 words)

  107. 107
    burnspbesq says:


    I’m thinking of running for political office. What’s the dumbest scandal I can engage in to ruin my candidacy?

    Take a briefcase full of cash from a government contractor, on camera.

  108. 108
    joel hanes says:

    The bones of an old joke about the beauties of various languages.
    Consider the aesthetics :

    English: butterfly
    Spanish: mariposa
    French: papillion
    Germna: Schmetterling

  109. 109
    Redshirt says:

    @raven: Subtly different! Oh, look, thread topic! Nuance of language. The more words you know the more accurately you can describe your thoughts. Lack of language limits what you can convey, or even what you can think.

    This implies the more languages you know, the better.

  110. 110
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    @Amir Khalid: Nope. Prefer Higgs.In the old days, people could change heir names a will. They were constrained back then (I’m talking about the Middle Ages) by a village system that viewed any outsider as suspect. I remain a devotee of anarchy so Higgs I’ll be for the moment.

  111. 111
    burnspbesq says:


    I saw the letter from the GA Republican Party to Nunn, welcoming her to the race; TRex posted it on the book of faces. My comment: “if they want to make this race about Atlanta vs. ‘the real Georgia,’ y’all get on up to Atlanta and get out the muthafuckin’ vote.”

  112. 112
    JCJ says:

    @Amir Khalid:

    Ich bin enttäuscht. Unser deutscher Freund, nicht “unser Deutsch Freund.”

    Adjective endings are always fun.

    Alles Liebe,

    Die Deutsche Grammatikpolizei

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  114. 114
    Linnaeus says:

    German is awesome.

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    fuckwit says:

    @dp: We have the second craziest street people in the world, second only to New York City I think,

  116. 116
    fuckwit says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate: German (and Sanskrit) remind me a lot of Java, a language built out of nouns. Hell, the Germans love Nouns so much they must capitalize all of them! And, the compound words for class names: FactoryHelperSingleton etc. I think this is why Java programmers are so numerous in Germany and India: it’s a computer language that fits the natural language very well.

    Personally, I cannot stand Java and won’t go near it with a 10-foot compiler. And Eclipse is right out.

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    gogol's wife says:


    My ex-husband, who’s a German professor, agrees with you.

  118. 118
    Fort Geek says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate: I didn’t know you were called Dennis! /King Arthur

    (runs away ;)

    (can’t resist a good Python moment…)

  119. 119
    Older says:

    I wouldn’t trust Anthony Weiner with anything important, and if I lived where I could vote for him, I certainly wouldn’t do that. But I did use to look on YouTube regularly to watch him rant.

    He was great! As funny as Fake Stephanie Cutter. He never broke out in flames, but you kind of got the impression that he might.

    But my god, he was stupid! I mean, I have known people who did stupid things, but that is far beyond anything I … no, wait. I do know someone who did something stupider. There is still a bullet hole in the side of the house.

  120. 120
    Larv says:

    @Mr Stagger Lee:

    According to CNN, we hunted the Dildo into extinction. Why is man such a cruel crerature?

    Very sad. On the brighter side, it’s only extinct in the wild; the captive population is enormous.

  121. 121
    DFH no.6 says:

    @Jay C:
    I heard this long ago as Charles V saying that “German is fit only for speaking to horses” in response to Luther wanting German (as the vernacular) used in church instead of Latin.

    No doubt apocryphal, but I’ve had occasion to employ it now and then, anyway, and it always cracked me up (being of partial German descent on both sides of my family, with a German surname).

    Same reason I find this “How German Sounds…” video funny.

    And my daughter – a fluent speaker of French – was told by her German-language professor (from Germany) that her spoken German would, sadly, always be “infected” by her French. Humorous but unsurprising assessment, I thought.

    I took русский язык (rooskiy yazik – Russian language) in HS and college, myself, but haven’t used it in many years so remember very little now. I do know it sounds like you’re talking with a mouthful of marbles.

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