Open thread

I imagine the National Security Advisor selection process went something like this.

Trump: someone GET ME PETRAEUS
aide: I got Petraeus!
Trump: Daaaavid
Trump: hello?
Trump: all right whatever, run up the flagpole that we might pick John Bolton. See what response we get.
aide: Sir, the red phone’s buzzing.
Trump: Maybe Boykin.
aide: the red phone again
Trump: screw it, Oprah’s on. See if mad dog has any ideas.

In other news, here’s a lovely pic from the Saugatuck Dunes on Lake Michigan, taken just before the election by reader MN. I hope to catch up on posting the many great photos sent in by you guys.

Chat about whatever, including but not limited to where and when you would transport yourself if you could escape the present timeline for one blessed moment. I pick Mohenjo-Daro during that civilization’s peak. I have long had a fascination for those guys. They left behind amazing feats of engineering and social organization, and an extensive catalog of art that somehow does not include a single image of war or violence.

173 replies
  1. 1
    Yutsano says:

    A TARDIS with the Peter Davidson Doctor.

  2. 2

    Physics geek working for the Manhattan project.

  3. 3
    raven says:

    Used to salmon fish in Muskegon.

  4. 4
    La Caterina (Mrs. Johannes) says:

    My 1970’s self, defying gravity in a ballet studio in Norfolk, VA.

  5. 5
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    Rome during the reign of Trajan.

  6. 6
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    Photo is beautiful. I spent two or three summers in Saugatuck as a kid. I remember picking up crinoids by the sackful along those dunes and beaches.

  7. 7
    raven says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: The end of Road To Perdition was filmed there.

  8. 8
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    Eine kleine Schadenfreude

    Debra Messing ‏@ DebraMessing Feb 19
    So Susan Sarandon was booed at the I am Muslim rally today.That’s all.

    Chat about whatever, including but not limited to where and when you would transport yourself if you could escape the present timeline for one blessed moment

    James Comey’s dreams, late October,2016 : “Don’t fucking do it, you asshole, or I’ll Freddy Kreuger your sleep till you run head first at a high window”

  9. 9
    Gin & Tonic says:

    Here I always thought Saugatuck was in Connecticut.

  10. 10
    Amanda in the South Bay says:

    I’m dealing with a schizophrenic roommate and close/long time friend, who I’m at my wits ends with. I simply cannot take care of her any longer, and I live in constant fear of what her next outbursts will bring. I’m all out of options at this point.

  11. 11
    amk says:

    are there too many russian ambassadors popping off suddenly?

  12. 12
    HeleninEire says:

    Oh Hi Raven. Open Thread. We can talk about anything ;)

    So I have missed NYC and my friends more than I thought I would, but not nearly so much to come back. And that is great. It makes me think I made the right decision to pack it all in.

    My Dublin life is fabulous. And even at 4 days back I keep thinking “I want to go home”

    Come visit. Alla youse.

  13. 13
    Paul W. says:

    Soooooo, what is happening in the first part of this post?

    Nice picture though!

  14. 14
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    Paris in the ’20s because I am a cliche.

  15. 15
  16. 16
    PK says:

    I want to go 10,000 years into the future. I wonder if civilization or humanity will survive. If it does then we probably would have reached for the stars and I want to know what we’ve found there. As far as the past, I’m not interested in visiting any point in history. It’s interesting, but it’s the same tiresome war and destruction repeated over and over. Only the future holds some hope (slim no doubt) that we can move beyond it.

  17. 17
    amk says:

    all caps ‘appy president’s day wishes from the narcissist twitler. can’t make shite up anymore.

  18. 18

    @Amanda in the South Bay: Oh my. Sounds like you need advice from someone who knows what options you might have, but I’ll bet none of them is easy. I’m sorry.

  19. 19
    raven says:

    I’d like to go back to LA in 57 when I first moved there.

  20. 20
    SiubhanDuinne says:


    It was quite the summer resort for Chicagoans in the day.

  21. 21
    raven says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: Yup, even more than Door County.

  22. 22
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay: There must be some sort of community support agency you can turn to for some help/assistance.

  23. 23
    XTPD says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: ROFL

    Also 90s manhattan

  24. 24
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    So Susan Sarandon was booed at the I am Muslim rally today.That’s all.

    Hard to express how happy this makes me.

  25. 25
    zhena gogolia says:

    I’m just sick of Trump. Just utterly sick of that fat ugly face and that horrible voice and everything he does, says, and stands for. There’s not a magazine or newspaper in the house that’s free from him (although People does its best to ignore him, I must say).

  26. 26
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    You loved Midnight in Paris, didn’t you? (Fessup: so did I.)

  27. 27
    Ruckus says:

    I just want to know which one of you jackals I need to thank for giving me the flu?

  28. 28
    Baud says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: Who knew Muslims were so neoliberal?

  29. 29
    delk says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: It was quite the gay resort back in the ’80’s/’90’s.

  30. 30
  31. 31
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay:

    Does the closest hospital have a psychiatric ER, or at least a psychiatric ward? They may be able to refer you to a social worker. It’s tough, because in CA it’s very, very difficult to force someone into treatment.

  32. 32
  33. 33
    HeleninEire says:

    @raven: Thanks. You are a man about town. Who has seen it all. And knows it all. Thanks again.

  34. 34
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: Of course I did. And The Sun Also Rises is one of my favorite books.

    Alternatively, being a New Dealer lawyer in ’30s D.C. would have it’s moments.

  35. 35
    Amanda in the South Bay says:

    @Mnemosyne: Alas I’m here in Portland, Oregon (the name comes with me).

  36. 36
    Mnemosyne says:

    I’m getting ready to retreat into the year 1815 — I have to revise 7 more pages of my novel and turn them in to be critiqued at a writer’s conference in late March.

    I also did more Disneyworld prep by going for about a 4-1/2 mile walk, with a stop at Iliad Books at the halfway point. I even got to see one of the famous cats hanging out on someone’s shoulders.

  37. 37
    Eric U. says:

    I used to pay a lot more attention to IT issues back when I was doing more serious programming. I got an IT newsletter today where they used Trump’s “drain the swamp” thing seriously, like he is doing anything other than the opposite of that. WTF, are they not paying attention at all? My twitter feed has a couple of IT folks on it, they are as anti-trump as anyone.

    @Mnemosyne: it’s very difficult to force anyone into psych treatment anywhere. My wife had a patient leave in a police car headed to the hospital 3 miles away and the patient told them to take him home and the cops did.

  38. 38
    Baud says:

    Chat about whatever, including but not limited to where and when you would transport yourself if you could escape the present timeline for one blessed moment.

    January 2021.

  39. 39
    SiubhanDuinne says:


    Are you going to tell about the NY Hilton?

    Not even sure it’s at the same location now, but when I worked in Manhattan I used to go there for drinks occasionally. It’s where I ran into Mitch Miller (used to be famous) and bought him a slice of cantaloupe :-)

  40. 40
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay:

    Unfortunately, I know even less about getting someone psych help in Oregon. But you should still be able to call the nearest hospital with a psychiatric ER or psychiatric ward for advice and/or a referral to a social worker.

  41. 41
    SiubhanDuinne says:


    Heh. Midwestern Fire Island.

  42. 42
    Ruckus says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay:
    Don’t know if this will help or if you have been there but it may be a place to start.
    This is the Santa Clara County site
    Mental Health Urgent Care (MHUC)
    871 Enborg Court
    San Jose, CA 95128
    Phone: 1 (408) 885-7855
    Hours: Monday – Sunday, 8:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.

  43. 43
    amygdala says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay: Does she have a case manager or a PCP? Not sure how emergent the situation is, but if it’s situation that needs attention in the next day or two, rather than tonight, those might be options. They might be able to get her (and you) connected to community resources.

    I’m so sorry about this.

  44. 44
    HeleninEire says:

    @raven: I first read that “wanna fight?” and I thought SiubhanDuianne is sooo gonna win this fight!

  45. 45
  46. 46
    Baud says:

    @zhena gogolia: Take a break. I do it all the time.

  47. 47
    hilts says:

    Where and when you would transport yourself if you could escape the present timeline for one blessed moment.

    There are so many things that come to mind, but this would be my first choice:

    Vienna May 7, 1824 – To witness the premiere performance of Beethoven’s 9th Symphony

  48. 48
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: Mitch Miller of “Sing Along with Mitch?”

  49. 49
    Redshift says:

    @PK: Future for me, too. It’s my best chance of getting off this rock.

  50. 50
    Viva BrisVegas says:


    I want to go 10,000 years into the future.

    I go with this. Then depending on how things turned out, I’d either hitch a ride with a friendly AI to Alpha Centauri, or else live as the King of the Eloi.

  51. 51
    PK says:


    January 2021

    Trump’s second inauguration?

  52. 52
    SectionH says:

    @Yutsano: My own Tardis. I won’t keep the brakes on either.

  53. 53
    Amanda in the South Bay says:

    @amygdala: she’s actually just starting with a brand new psychiatrist and therapist as of last week (I and her mom are helping pay out of pocket, because the mental health provider assigned by Oregon Health Plan truly sucks).

  54. 54
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @schrodingers_cat: Certainly.

    ETA: Why do you ask?

  55. 55
    Ohio Mom says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay: Have you tried NAMI?

    If not, Google for a support group near you. Everyone there has gone through what you are.

    Their national help line is 800-950-6264.

  56. 56
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    The very one.

  57. 57
    scott alloway says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Yep. I remember that as a kid.

  58. 58
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay: There’s got to be someone in Portland who can provide you with assistance. If you were in Eugene, I’d send you to CAHOOTS, which provides assistance in situations like yours.

  59. 59
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @scott alloway: @SiubhanDuinne: I’ve only seen reruns.

  60. 60
    Amanda in the South Bay says:

    @amygdala: She was in a hospital overnight, then started to yell at the voices like hell in the car on the way home. Medicated and sleeping now.

  61. 61
    SiubhanDuinne says:


    Hahaha! SUUUUUURE I am.

  62. 62
    Ruckus says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay:
    Of course I posted before I saw this.
    So lets try again
    This sounds like a place to at least start.
    I think it’s the county mental health for Portland
    These places most likely have at least some info and may be able to help. I volunteered at a city mental heath facility for nearly 4 yrs back in the 70s and we could provide resources for someone having to cope with someone else’s issues.

  63. 63
    Baud says:

    @PK: His first incarceration.

  64. 64
    Ohio Mom says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay: Just wanted to add that I admire you for what you are doing!

  65. 65
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    I’ve only seen reruns.

    Oh, hush.

  66. 66
    HeleninEire says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: So, posted on the last thread but happy to repeat here.

    I am in the middle of Manhattan at a premier hotel and they don’t have a restaurant. They have “herb-n-kitchen” which is a hopped-up 7-11. Really???????????

    There is no place to sit in the lobby. No seats at all. As a NY’er you know when you need to sit you go straight to a hotel.

    Also, in the bar, they give you a check when you are leaving and ask you to sign your name and hey what is your room number? They do not ask for a key card. So last thread I said that I may sign “Baud, president of these here United States; the White House” I would surely get out of here before they figure it out.

    That being said – the location cannot be beat. But even after 3 months, I miss Dublin.

  67. 67
    Miss Bianca says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Paris in the 1790s, because I’m a freak.

  68. 68
    KS in MA says:

    @Gin & Tonic: Yep, me too.

  69. 69
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Miss Bianca: Gotta be quick on your feet to survive. Just remember, the odd Corsican gunner is a good bet.

  70. 70
    SiubhanDuinne says:


    Sorry, missed on previous thread. I would have found it eventually, but would likely have been four ack emma.

  71. 71
    Barbara says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay: Is this a first episode or has she previously been treated? If the latter, getting in touch with prior treating physicians would be the first step. If a first episode, call her pcp if she has one. If she does not, then a psychiatric ER — if truly at wit’s end — or make an appointment with an appropriate clinic. If you call local social services you can gain some insight into the most appropriate resources. When my sister had a psychotic break it bacame clear that only my mother had the power to persuade her to get treatment. You might need to try different strategies to get her to accept treatment.

  72. 72
    sukabi says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay: have you tried NAMI national alliance for mental illness oregon…they might be able to help with finding options , services ect… Good luck with your friend. Getting help for family is hard enough, when there isn’t a blood / family connection is probably going to be a bit more difficult.

  73. 73
    PK says:


    Hoping that happens by 2018.

  74. 74
    greennotGreen says:

    I’d like to go about seven years in my past so I could have a complete hysterectomy and not get ovarian cancer. If I go far enough in the future that there’s sure to be a cure for cancer, then at least some of my family will be dead. Almost no point in the past (more than 50 years ago, anyway) is good for women because of lack of birth control and agency in general. And you distant past people – are you going to take a supply of antibiotics?

    I know. I’m being a killjoy. Sorry.

  75. 75


    Trump’s second inauguration?

    Baud’s first.

  76. 76
    Another Scott says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay: I truly admire you for doing so much to help. It sounds like you’re aware of all the local support people and are doing what you can.

    That’s all anyone can ask.

    It sounds like she needs to find the right medication, and you can only do so much in that process.

    Don’t try to be Wonder Woman. You’re already doing so much.

    Stay safe. Best of luck!!


  77. 77
    Aleta says:

    Carter Page interview Bluffing and huffin’ and puffin’ …. and squirrely

  78. 78
    SiubhanDuinne says:


    And that does all sound weird. Love the Baud sign out, though!

    Have you ever stayed at the Library Hotel? Just a short block from the NY Library, each floor devoted to a different genre of literature, and bookcases/shelves in every room. I spent a night there, wow, must be 10-12 years ago now, and adored it.

  79. 79
    Amanda in the South Bay says:

    @Barbara: Ohhhh yeah, she’s on her fourth anti psychotic, is on her second psychiatrist, second therapist, and has been to various ERs about a dozen times for this.

  80. 80
    Omnes Omnibus says:


    And you distant past people – are you going to take a supply of antibiotics?

    Hell, I’ve even been inoculated against bubonic plague.

  81. 81
    HeleninEire says:

    @Miss Bianca: Answered you earlier: missed your question. Yeah the Guardian Angels are no longer a thing. That’s what made it so sad.

  82. 82
    Barbara says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay: Just saw your last post. If she is transitioning to new medications she may be disoriented or having side effects and possibly not taking them. I would start with the new therapist.

  83. 83
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Miss Bianca:

    Paris in the 1790s, because I’m a freak.

    Remind me again, do you knit?

  84. 84
    Ruckus says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay:
    And then I see this after posting my second comment!
    It is tough to work with other people’s mental health issues, you want to help in the worst way and yet it’s usually a hard and long slog.
    Something that was very tough for me to learn was that as an involved bystander you can’t always help, some times the road is just too long, too convoluted and too rocky. Good luck but don’t be afraid to understand that this may be beyond what a friend can do. Or it may not and in the end it will have been worth the journey.

  85. 85
    greennotGreen says:

    @hilts: Yeah, if it’s just for a brief time, I second that concert choice. Do I have to wear a corset?

  86. 86
    Miss Bianca says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: yeah, it would definitely be more interesting than peaceful, that’s for sure. Alternatively, 1590s London would be pretty interesting, too…I hear there’s tbis new playwright who seems to be all the thing…

  87. 87
    amygdala says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay: Ah, got it. Did you get discharge instructions or paperwork with contact info if problems came up? Checking in with the office of her new psychiatrist in the morning seems reasonable, but I’m trying to think of a plan if you and she need help before that. If there’s a crisis line or something similar affiliated with the place at which she spent the night, the contact info might be in the discharge paperwork.

    The world would be a better place with more people like you in it.

  88. 88

    @Omnes Omnibus: I became interested in INA trials because of Vishal Bharadwaj’s upcoming Rangoon set in the Burma theater of WWII. I have kinda gone back and forth about Subhash Chandra Bose and the INA. On the one hand Axis powers were evil but Britain was not all that wonderful to India either.

  89. 89
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Miss Bianca: Chris Marlowe? Yeah, that guy has a great career ahead of him.

  90. 90
    Baud says:

    @HeleninEire: I’m going to be visited by debt collectors, aren’t I?

  91. 91
    Quinerly says:

    Packing the car for lift off from Bernalillo, NM in the AM. Hope to make Gallup for early breakfast at a place called Earl’s….been there 60 years, locals and Native Americans. Two weeks down, 2000 miles under my belt and Poco’s collar…4 weeks to go. Window Rock, St. Michaels, Ganado on tomorrow’s itinerary. Holbrook, AZ for tomorrow night.

  92. 92
    Miss Bianca says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: ha ha! No – I would have been a lousy Tricoteuse!

  93. 93
    West of the Rockies (been a while) says:


    American Prometheus was an excellent J. Robert Oppenheimer biography. The Manhattan Project would have been amazing to participate in. (Yes, I must ended a sentence with a preposition.)

  94. 94
    HeleninEire says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: Oh no. That’s fine. Loved bitching X 2. ;)

    That’s the best thing about living in Dublin. The Irish are the friendliest and happiest people in the world. And when you live around them you become them. Living in Ireland has sucked the bitch right out of me.

    That being said I got stuck on the E train on Friday and totally lost my shit. Like a New Yorker should.

  95. 95
    CaseyL says:

    There are a lot of places in the past I’d like to visit; maybe check out Pleistocence Earth (6 million years ago: post-dinosaurs, pre-hominids). But if I had to stay, I’d probably chose the future, too. Maybe not as far future as PK, though. More like 1000-1500 years.

    If humans are still around, they may have studied the Second and Third Millennia with the wisdom that hopefully comes from thoroughly fucking things up. The Second Millennium was fucked up mostly due to ignorance: people just didn’t yet know enough science, and instead shaped their world views with superstition and sympathetic magic. In the Third Millennium, humans gained a great deal of objective information but were still mostly captives to ideologies that subverted understanding what they knew. They knew the world was subject to laws and consequences, but figured they could outsmart or con their way out of the consequences. By the end of the first century of the third Millennium, that was obviously no longer possible, and most forms of metropolitan, industrialized, finance-driven society collapsed in the succeeding centuries.

    Give about a thousand years for the surviving humans to rediscover a few vital technologies, mostly in hygiene and medicine. Maybe they’ll also figure out a better balance of knowledge and wisdom. That could be a culture I’d enjoy getting to know, perhaps even live in.

    Also, hopefully, some of the near-extinct species may have made a comeback by then.

  96. 96

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Hell, I’ve even been inoculated against bubonic plague.

    That’s probably useful to have since you comment here.

  97. 97
    hovercraft says:


    Hard to express how happy this makes me.

    Rotten eggs and tomatoes would have added to my enjoyment.

    No I’m not bitter, why do you ask?

  98. 98
    amygdala says:

    @HeleninEire: I mentioned in the last thread that I wondered if the lack of seating might be a Times Square thing. I was looking for a place out of the cold, since I had gotten to the theater (Hamilton… woo!) 20 minutes or so before they were seating. No seats in the lobby or the attached Starbucks. I think it was a Marriott. It was strange.

  99. 99
    HeleninEire says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: No. Wow. Gotta check it out. Funny how when you live in a place you miss the quirks of it.

  100. 100
    GregB says:


    That clown would get shredded under oath.

    What a maroon.

  101. 101
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: I’ve heard people are very excited that he’s finally getting recognized for the great work he’s doing. Many people are telling me this, people who know.

    in other news, I can’t decide which of these I want more, for spite

    Bashar ‏@ yashar 28m28 minutes ago
    Source: Evan McMullin seriously exploring possibility of running against @ jasoninthehouse or running for @ OrrinHatch’s seat. TBD.

    I’ve also heard he’s planning to run for governor of Utah, which is I guess the smart move if he really has his eye on the Presidency.

  102. 102
    Amanda in the South Bay says:

    @amygdala: Thank you very much. I don’t know, if things get bad its either trying to get her to to the hospital in between yelling at her voices, or choosing to call 911 and praying they take her to the new mental health hospital here in Portland.

  103. 103
    Mnemosyne says:


    I ran across a program about “history’s greatest fibs” hosted by Lucy Worsley and she did one about India that sounds like it was at least partly filmed there. AFAICT, it’s about busting the comforting lies that people in England still tell themselves about the occupation of India, so you may like it.

  104. 104
    Miss Bianca says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: oh, Kit writes some lovely poetry but The Jew of Malta was just a leetle extreme…

  105. 105
    Ruckus says:

    Is it the Spanish Flu?
    Well I haven’t spontaneously started to speak a second language……. At least not any better than I did 2 days ago. Which is badly.
    The ER didn’t tell me what strain it was, just that it was a bacterial rather than viral. And that I will feel human in about 5 days. So something new to look forward to.

  106. 106
    Amanda in the South Bay says:

    @Ruckus: How do I get someone out of my life without making them literally homeless and at the mercy of the criminal justice system? Schizophrenic and trans isn’t a good combination.

  107. 107
    HeleninEire says:

    @Baud: OH YES YOU ARE. Good thing you are in the running to be President. They, apparently, never pay their bills.

  108. 108
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @schrodingers_cat: My principle (caveat: I do not practice criminal law at this time and have not done so in may years) is that I would defend anyone. The limitations on that being a case that is beyond my abilities (complex financial fraud where I could not understand the underlying nature of the activity) or something where my personal experience would prevent me from offering a proper defense (defending a alleged rapist if my significant other had recently been raped). In both cases, I would decline because I would doubt that I could provide a proper defense.

  109. 109
    Mnemosyne says:


    In 1824, you would still be in a short corset (kind of like a longline bra or bustier), not the heavy-duty things the Victorians would be stuck with.

  110. 110
    RobertDSC-Mac Mini says:

    including but not limited to where and when you would transport yourself if you could escape the present timeline for one blessed moment.

    To be part of the crew of Apollo 17, last manned mission to the Moon.

  111. 111
    HeleninEire says:

    @amygdala: Also; no trash cans. In all the public places in the hotel. This is for sure a terrorism thing.

  112. 112
    Baud says:

    @HeleninEire: They don’t pay their debts to Americans. Debts to Russian oligarchs are another matter.

  113. 113
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Miss Bianca: But that was in another country; And besides, the wench is dead.

  114. 114

    @Baud: Wait, you have debts to Russian oligarchs?

  115. 115
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Aleta: “You know nothing, Jon Snow!”

  116. 116
    greennotGreen says:

    @RobertDSC-Mac Mini: Or first mission to Mars! But I’d want to skip the trip there, just arrive magically at our destination.

  117. 117
    amygdala says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay: The ER may be the only option if things get out of hand quickly. I was just hoping there might be a crisis line available short of that, but those aren’t available everywhere.

    As you point out, seriously mentally ill and trans is a very tough combination. People who work in the mental health system are usually pretty aware of how often friends and family are all that keeps patients from the streets. Other services vary a lot by locale, but I’m going to keep my fingers tightly crossed that there’s a psychiatric social worker, perhaps, affiliated with her new psychiatrist who might be able to help. The care systems are often hellishly complex and help from someone who knows the rules and regs can be invaluable.

    I read somewhere that the criminal justice system is the biggest provider of mental health services in the US. What an indictment of us as a country.

  118. 118
    Baud says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA: Someone has to pay for Helen’s escapades.

  119. 119
    jacy says:

    I would transport myself to May 9, 2023. This is the date my youngest child turns 18 and I will never have to legally deal with his shithead father again. It has not been a good day on the domestic front.

  120. 120
    Ruckus says:

    Future for me as well. On the premise that at least there may be an improvement in humans at some point. Of course if I can go a few hundred yrs in the future maybe I can go back to being 30, and getting another run at life before cancer, before whatever it is that causes me to have shooting pains in various parts of my body, that I think is the reason I went blind for about 15 minutes once….. IOW to just be somewhat healthy, looking forward, not back. So when medicine has progressed maybe about another 500-600 years.

  121. 121
    O. Felix Culpa says:

    I’d walk the Camino de Santiago again. But wait! I am going back, this time to walk the Camino del Norte, along the northern (natch) coast of Spain.

    P.S. I just got elected Ward Chair for our local Democratic Party, so running away seems like a prudent thing to do.

  122. 122
    Baud says:

    @O. Felix Culpa: Congratulations! I feel better about our future already.

  123. 123
    efgoldman says:


    It’s where I ran into Mitch Miller

    Did you sing along with Mitch?

  124. 124
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay:

    Another option might be to call the Trans Lifeline. Sometimes it’s easier to start with that end of things than to try and explain to a psych ward that the person is transgender in addition to being schizophrenic.

  125. 125
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Miss Bianca:

    ha ha! No – I would have been a lousy Tricoteuse!

    So, you’re just there to see Madame la Guillotine in action then?

  126. 126
    Lyrebird says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay: Sending non-denominational non-pushy good thoughts/prayers your way, and… if she unintentionally hurts you while in the throes of her illness, that could leave her even more thoroughly without resources.

    Very much hoping New Psychiatrist returns crisis calls, and/or that you find a decent inpatient berth for her ASAP…

  127. 127
    amygdala says:

    @HeleninEire: The lack of trash cans could well be a terrorism thing. I wondered if the lack of seating was to discourage homeless people from spending time there.

  128. 128
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @O. Felix Culpa:

    P.S. I just got elected as Ward Chair for our local Democratic Party, so running away seems like a prudent thing to do.

    Congrats. I also am glad that you seem to have a well-thought out plan.

  129. 129
    satby says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: did you sing along?
    Edited to add: dammit, Omnes beat me.

  130. 130
    O. Felix Culpa says:

    @Baud: Hah! I haven’t told my Ward-mates yet, but we’re gearing up for Baud! 2020!

  131. 131
    HeleninEire says:

    @Baud: Ahh. Glad you have accepted your responsibilities. I await the check. You realize my last name ends in “ski” right? For real.

  132. 132
    efgoldman says:


    To witness the premiere performance of Beethoven’s 9th Symphony

    You wouldn’t have liked it. Audiences talked, came and went all thru concerts (a concert was still a fairly new concept), and the evening was endless. The symphony was broken up, with other pieces played between movements. Also, Beethoven conducted, and as he was already deaf, he had no idea what any of the performers were doing.

  133. 133
    SiubhanDuinne says:


    Not that particular night, but I confess to loving the weekly wallow in old familiar tunes on the TV. Always thought the “bouncing ball” was stupid and unnecessary, but it was a gimmick that I guess worked for him. Anyhow, yeah, his program was fun and the 10-15 minutes or whatever it was that I spent in his company that evening was enjoyable. For me, anyhow.

  134. 134
    Mnemosyne says:


    My narcissistic sister-in-law (aka the Devil Woman) got her sugar daddy to take her to New York the same week I’m taking her two youngest kids to Disney World, so the odds of her backing out at the last second are low. Small victories!

    Her son moved to Seattle recently — we can’t help but notice that it’s geographically the absolute furthest away from her he can get while still staying in the contiguous United States.

  135. 135
    greennotGreen says:

    On these fantasy trips, can we bring things back? Because I would like to bring back several clutches of passenger pigeon eggs and some adult birds to help raise them, a few clutches of different small dinosaurs’ eggs…I’d have to do some research before undertaking these species rescue missions because I’m sure there are many worthy candidates, but that would be awesome!

  136. 136
    Lyrebird says:

    @jacy: (I hope this comes through as it’s meant, which is to bring maybe a wan smile if not a laugh…)

    Okie dokie guess I will just take whatever whining I was gonna do about my single-parent overwhelm and the leaky, badly-wired house I need to sell and toss it in the circular file.

    Good thoughts of peace and safety and less stress to you and the whole mishpocha. (means “family” in Yiddish)

  137. 137
    O. Felix Culpa says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Congrats. I also am glad that you seem to have a well-thought out plan.

    Thank you. Brave Sir Robin is my role model. More seriously, we are making a concerted grassroots effort to reorganize and re-energize the party. We had over 35 people show up this evening, compared 3 (yes, three) at the last Ward election.

  138. 138
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Baud: Russian oligarchs don’t let hindrances like the legal system get in their way.

  139. 139
    Miss Bianca says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: oh, God, no – actually, in all seriousness, to go hang in the gallery of the National Assembly. And to witness some of the very first pro_woman legislation get passed, in terms of marriage and Inheritance law.

  140. 140
    danielx says:

    Saugatuck is beautiful, although not a place you want to spend the winter. But then a lot of the small lakeside towns up thataway are (shout out to Grand Haven!). Gorgeous beaches, although that water temperature! Once was there in late July and the daughter unit was about six; she goes racing into the water and says “c’mon in dad, it’s fine!”. Being the credulous soul I was at the time, I just dived in all the way…and came up gasping and totally, absolutely positive that I was never going to be the same man again.

    Ever. Have waited until mid-August to go up ever since.

    Entertaining guests at Chez X, one of whom is LD. LD is a basset-beagle mix – think beagle head on basset body, with soft fur and feet like dessert plates. LD has decided she likes it here and may stay a while. She is utterly captivating, aside from a neurotic streak. However, Zoey dislikes interlopers of any sort, and dogs are beyond the pale. She has already bopped LD a good one and cordially despises LD and all her works. Yes, she does.

  141. 141
    SiubhanDuinne says:


    Wasn’t that the concert at which his concertmaster finally had to turn him around to acknowledge the audience, because he had no idea that they were applauding their hands off?

  142. 142
    Quinerly says:

    @O. Felix Culpa:
    Congrats! I was thinking about you today and wondering if you won.

  143. 143
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @greennotGreen: Dragon eggs. I’d want to bring back dragon eggs. Valar Morgulis!

  144. 144
    O. Felix Culpa says:

    @Quinerly: Thank you! Winning is easy when no one else wants the job. :)

  145. 145
    SiubhanDuinne says:


    came up gasping and totally, absolutely positive that I was never going to be the same man again.

    The lake water was a mite chilly, was it?

    The sea, the snotgreen sea, the scrotumtightening sea. — James Joyce, Ulysses

  146. 146
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    where and when you would transport yourself if you could escape the present timeline for one blessed moment

    Ride a dinosaur with Jeebus! Shotgun.

  147. 147
    greennotGreen says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: Flying arsonists? I think not!

  148. 148
    Aleta says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay: You mentioned her mother. Is her mother coming over every day, or checking in by phone, or ? I think there’s a point when one has to turn the responsibility and decisions over to the person’s parents. To let them know that her condition has worsened and it’s beyond one’s ability to help. If you’re the one living with her, their realization may not be caught up to yours yet. But they need to make the judgements about her safety. It’s just the nature of the illness that a caring friend cannot figure out the right thing to do. Not your fault at all. But I’d let her parents know as soon as possible that they need to come and take over. They hopefully will be able to call professionals to take care of her.

  149. 149
    Ohio Mom says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay: I don’t have an answer to that question, it is a hard one.

    I hope you can find a source of in-the-flesh support for you. You need it and deserve it.

  150. 150
    frosty says:

    @greennotGreen: The antibiotics were my first thought. Then it’s OMG I don’t want to go back to adding up spreadsheets by hand, so nothing technical … well maybe a NASA geek.

    I wouldn’t mind being one of the guys with a sledgehammer at the Berlin Wall in 1989. I bet that was a party for the ages. And speaking of Berlin, a pilot (even crew chief) during the Airlift in 1948 would have been something to see.

  151. 151
    Quinerly says:

    @O. Felix Culpa:
    I’ve a wonderful time in Albuquerque. Rather sad to leave. Met so many cool people. Again, great meeting you at San Marcos. See you next year!

  152. 152

    @Omnes Omnibus:BTW both Jinnah and Nehru were a part of the defense team. Holding public trials for three officers (a Hindu, a Sikh and a Muslim) was a move that back fired spectacularly.
    * In Beltway hack terms, it was bad optics.

  153. 153
    danielx says:


    Tightening hell, I thought my parts had totally withdrawn inside my body. Or possibly frozen and broken off.

  154. 154

    @Mnemosyne: Will take a look. Brits tell themselves that they acquired their Empire by accident, and once acquired they had fulfill the white man’s burden of bringing civilization to the heathens. By starving them and killing them if need be.
    You know like burning a village to save it, same deal.

  155. 155
    Ruckus says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay:
    My point was there may not be a good answer and that if you want to help it is going to be a long, difficult slog. When I worked at that mental health center we had certain clients that called in all the time. On was a 14 yr old girl who could be a woman of any age and sophistication. She had the voices, the language, everything down pat. She was seeing a shrink regularly but I believe she was schizophrenic, just from how well she could play her roles. We had a full three ring binder of just her calls. I was at a much further distance than you but still this was difficult. It was 40 yrs ago and I can still remember the voices.
    As you can see I don’t really have an answer for you. This is something you are going to have to decide for yourself, can you do this without losing yourself in her misery? I will say that if the answer is no, that is OK, not that it doesn’t suck beyond imagination, but you have to take care of yourself too. You can’t help her if you are too conflicted or in too much pain yourself.

  156. 156
    danielx says:


    And determination to keep the bloody Frogs out.

  157. 157
    Mnemosyne says:


    I haven’t had a chance to watch it yet, but I’m assuming she gets to at least a few lies since it’s an hour long.

    Oh, and they’ll probably dress her up in a badly-fitting sari or other Indian-style clothing at some point. I don’t know why, but in the series with her I’m currently watching (“A Very British Romance”), they put her in a series of period costumes, but none of them fit correctly. It was a little weird.

  158. 158
    jacy says:


    The older kid turns 18 in a little over a year. On his birthday, he plans to pack up whatever he can carry from his dad’s little shitbox 2-bedroom fourplex apartment and never, ever look back. I’m hoping that before that time, the idiot has imploded. He’s getting more and more vindictive with the kids right now. He has weekday custody of them, but leaves every night for several hours to go stay with his girlfriend, leaving them to fend for themselves. I asked them if that really bothered them a lot and they youngest said, “No. At least if he’s not here, he’s not complaining about how poor he is or telling my I’m fat and stupid.” And there’s not a damned thing I can do about it. And even though he just sent me a letter complaining about how paying for the kids’ school (he took me to court to keep them in expensive private schools) isn’t allowing him to live the lifestyle he wants to live, he just bought a brand new car and is taking the kids to Disneyworld for Spring Break. In the meantime, my car had been sitting in the driveway since November because I can’t afford to repair it because I’m still trying to pay off medical bills and the lawyer fees for the stupid, rigged custody fight. I’m trying to maintain a positive attitude and not let him draw me into his drama, but it’s wearing on me. GAH.

  159. 159

    @danielx: The frogs were never much of a problem in India. There were some minor skirmishes and the British kicked French ass.

  160. 160
    Mnemosyne says:


    Heh. Depending on when your kids’ spring break is, I may be at WDW at the same time! I’m there for a week starting on 3/13.

    I came up with the WDW idea for my nieces because their mother will not let them come to CA since she’s pissed at my brother for telling her that she could not continue to receive her son’s Social Security check if her son was not living with her. Since she’s a narcissist, I’m operating on the assumption that she will NEVER get over being pissed off about that, so I had to come up with a Plan B.

  161. 161
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @schrodingers_cat: No, one does have to occupy a subcontinent to deny the Frogs the opportunity to do so.

  162. 162
    Ohio Mom says:

    @amygdala: Re: the lack of mental health care in this great nation of ours.

    I recently ran into another autism mom whom I haven’t seen in a couple of years. Her kid is about ten years older than mine and very, very involved. He’s in a wheel chair because he’s broken so many bones via self-injurious behaviors, he needs almost constant supervision, he has next to no language. He spends his days with aides because the day program couldn’t handle him.

    She told me that after making a new friend of a mom whose son is mentally ill, she’s come to realize that we autism families are so, so fortunate to have kids on the spectrum — our kids get Medicaid, which supports them. Her new friend’s son, armed only with paltry SSI payments may very well end up on the street when she dies. There is no place and no support for him.

    I’ve been haunted by that image.

  163. 163
  164. 164
    jacy says:

    @Mnemosyne: They’re going at Easter — and I do hope they have a good time. It’ll be Loch’s 17th birthday that week, and it would be nice if they could have some good memories of spending time with their dad. I’ve been reading a lot about “parallel parenting” with a narcissist and I’m just not engaging him, not complaining, not saying anything to the kids about it. I’m just trying to be supportive for them. But because I’m not engaging him, he keeps trying to get me to argue about something, anything, so he can have something to complain about. I’m down to just answering “yes” or “no” to anything he says that requires a response via email and otherwise just letting him stew. Today I’m being less successful at my zen attitude….

  165. 165
    efgoldman says:


    I will feel human in about 5 days.

    What did you feel like before?

  166. 166
    Alain the site fixer says:

    @Quinerly: look for the new post, it should launch at 5 am eastern. Night and travel safely, and enjoy Earls. Sounds like my kind of place.

  167. 167
    Ruckus says:

    @Ohio Mom:
    Back in the early 70s and before people could be committed against their will quite easily. We went from that to they have to be a proven danger to others and even then the help they receive is poor at best.. This changed when I worked at that mental health clinic and it made things a lot different. I’m sure there is no easy answer, as we know, for a large percentage of our citizens, from the instant you are born, you are on your own and shouldn’t receive any assistance from anyone other than your parents, and they only have to do that if they desire.
    I had an aunt who was, as people say, not quite right. I’ve visited her in more than one mental health institution but she had enough sense to commit herself. Even then she could only stay a limited time. I don’t think she lived any where other than a care home her entire adult life.

  168. 168
    efgoldman says:


    Wasn’t that the concert at which his concertmaster finally had to turn him around to acknowledge the audience, because he had no idea that they were applauding their hands off?

    That’s what the legend says, and I even used it in a set of liner notes, but of course no way to know.
    Most of those legends are just that.

  169. 169
    Ruckus says:

    I think that was my point. I’m going with eggplant though. The last couple of days though, death on a triscit.
    I just got through a few minutes of shivering like I was plugged into a light socket, and I then I coughed up what looked like a quarter of a lung. 2 layers wasn’t enough, so I’ve gone to 3 and a blanket and turned the heat up to sauna.
    ETA No more updates unless I’m planning my funeral or win the lottery. And I don’t play the lottery.

  170. 170
    J R in WV says:


    What you describe is not a premier hotel, I don’t care where it is. In NYC there are actual really premier hotels, not just expensive but great as well. And some of the older hotels are actually wonderful, big guest rooms and bigger suites, old fashioned lobby with leather couches and chairs arranged in little groups around the concierge desk.

    But with prices less than “name” hotels with terrible services. Sure you aren’t in a Trump hotel? I kid!!! ;-)

  171. 171
    Quinerly says:

    @Alain the site fixer:
    Cool. Thanks. I think we will all have a lot of fun with it.

  172. 172
    Mom Says I'm Handsome says:

    The first time I heard of Mohenjo-Daro was in the They Might Be Giants song “We’re The Mesopotamians”:

    This is my last stick of gum
    I’m going to cut it up so everybody else gets some
    Except for Ashurbanipal, who says my haircut makes me look like a Mohenjo-daroan
    Hey, Ashurbanipal
    I’m a Mesopotamian

  173. 173
    Barbara says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay: If you are still reading, now that I am no longer on a mobile device. I hope you were able to get through the night okay. When my sister was having delusions (which did not take the form of voices) I learned that it was best to avoid the ER if at all possible, because it can come across as highly threatening, and the people in the ER don’t really know her and are basically just going to give some big dose of a big drug to make her quiet. You are in a really tough position, and there are different levels of intensity to schizophrenia. Basically, the younger a person is when it starts, the harder it is to get under long term control, for whatever reason — biological or social.

    I am going to leave you with a link to an article on schizophrenia that is somewhat controversial but that I found to be very illuminating.

    Giving your friend a safe place is an incredible gift. Not seeing her purely as a mentally ill person is another gift. Good luck.

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