Relaxing Room

A social space for people to chit-chat, post links, and stay in touch. First time commenters will have their comments automatically sent into moderation (I’m keeping an eye on moderated comments so I can quickly approve them though). After that, you can post whenever you want.

This space will be moderated. There will be zero tolerance of any sort of bigotry: no ableism, homophobia, transphobia, sexism, misogyny, racism, or any other form of bigotry. I want this to be a welcoming area for people who need somewhere to kick their metaphorical feet up and chill.

Relaxing Room

450 thoughts on “Relaxing Room

  1. 352

    Hi, Jim B; Welcome In!
    At this time, I would like to draw your attention to the (revised) Questionnaire, up-thread a ways.


  2. rq

    Hello, JimB!
    Starting to think the Questionnaire will have to be shortened. Seven whole questions, and not-a-one pertaining to cheese, and a couple even require actual though! #gasp#
    Actually I think I’ve only answered half of it myself. I’ll give it a go in a moment.
    First, it’s lovely to see everyone who has just recently dropped in (#waves#). Because this still looks weird to me, I find it confusing to keep scrolling up and down (Tony, this place needs some numeration!), so yes, I’m making excuses for not mentioning anyone by name.
    Second, I’ll have a Campari with grapefruit juice and a dash of grenadine. It just sounds good.
    Third… well, there is no third, I suppose. Just one of those weeks and one of those foreseeable futures.
    You know what else this place needs?
    A piano. I’d love to go do some scales right now. Calming.

  3. rq

    #puts up BEWARE THE POMERANIAN ROUND BACK out front#

    Also, this is the weirdest commenting experience. Sometimes, the Shoop’s Roost shows up nicely, dark words on white, with a comment box… but no Submit button. Sometimes, it appears funny, dark words on a dark background, but with all appropriate buttons… Work computer, why you gotta do this to me?

  4. 357

    Tony! – Thanks, perfect.

    cicely, here goes:
    1) Favorite nighttime/evening beverage? Beer, for the most part. Especially any of the craft beers from the many NorCal brewers. But as noted above a single malt is also a favorite – Ardbeg & Lagavulin are favorites, but one of these days I will own a bottle of Macallan 25.

    2) Peanut butter or jam? Yes. Peanut butter & jam (raspberry, boysenberry, or blackberry) on sourdough…this is what “comfort food” looks like in my dictionary.

    3) Weirdest word in your native language? Matriculate.

    4) Favorite non-dirty word that sounds kinda dirty (in your native language). Someone up-thread mentioned “moist”, I’d have to agree.

    5) General attitude towards table top gaming? Enjoyed it as a kid, wife & I spent time early on playing Backgammon, sadly not much time for it now. Although got to introduce son to 2 of my favorites: Mille Borne (family favorite from childhood) and cribbage (introduced to it by my dad).

    6) Horses? Ambivalent, although one of my close friends was involved in equestrian events when we first met.

    7) Peas? Generally favorable, they make appearances in many recipes at home. And a bag of frozen was instrumental in my recovery from knee surgery last year.

    8) Miracle Whip? Not a fan. Mayo, or even better a Dijon or country mustard.

  5. 358

    The mental image I’m getting of a deadly, guard Pomeranian dog is cracking me up.
    Dijon mustard = country mustard?
    I’ve never heard of the latter.

  6. 359

    Thanks for the welcome, YOB & rq.

    Oh, and just noticed it’s plain “Tony” here, without the “!”. Apologies.

  7. 360

    I meant either Dijon or country mustard, not that they were the same. Country mustard is coarser, with whole or somewhat-whole mustard seeds. Similar to Dijon in flavor, at least type we have at home.

    Basically, I prefer any mustard that isn’t that fluorescent yellow stuff. 🙂

  8. rq

    That’s a rather modern-looking piano for this establishment, Tony, but thanks! Needs a bit of a tune, but sounds okay!

    Also, I’m taking up collection for Smashable Things, for use in emergencies. Anything will do: ricketty furniture, chipped china, old lightbulbs, etc. Gonna go set it up out back, safely separate from the Pomeranian (wouldn’t want to harm that lil fella).

  9. 362

    Hi, Tony! Thanks so much for setting this up. It’s a nice room.

    [Waves] Hello to everyone! Formerly “Lynna, OM” here.

    I think I should post a link to some political chicanery, just to keep up the tradition. As you all probably know by now, the New York Times recently published something of a hit piece on Hillary Clinton. The article was wrong on many levels and the NYT editors took forever and a day to correct it.

    There are, even after the corrections, some questions that remain unanswered. For example:

    “[…] In our conversations with the Times reporters, it was clear that they had not personally reviewed the IG’s [Inspectors General] referral that they falsely described as both criminal and focused on Hillary Clinton. Instead, they relied on unnamed sources that characterized the referral as such. However, it is not at all clear that those sources had directly seen the referral, either. This should have represented too many ‘degrees of separation’ for any newspaper to consider it reliable sourcing, least of all The New York Times.

    “Times’ editors have attempted to explain these errors by claiming the fault for the misreporting resided with a Justice Department official whom other news outlets cited as confirming the Times’ report after the fact. This suggestion does not add up. It is our understanding that this Justice Department official was not the original source of the Times’ tip….This raises the question of what other sources the Times may have relied on for its initial report. […]”


    Yeah, the NYT fucked up. They set an example of very poor journalistic ethics and methods. At least journalism professors will have a piece they can refer to as a bad example of … well, as a bad example of just about everything, including how to correct errors.

  10. 365

    pops in

    waves at AlexanderZ

    All this talk about birds makes me miss Nightjar. Then again, she did say that she preferred the Tdome to the Lounge, and this is more like the Lounge

    That was when I had a choice! But I miss having a place like this, to occasionally vent and chat and share stuff… and talk about birds, of course! And looks around this place sure looks nice (Thanks, Tony!). So, if you all don’t mind having me here… waves

    (Well, except I have a deadline to meet and work to do, so I probably won’t be here for the next few days. But after that. And I promise pics of birds. And of my new kitten, that I just rescued about a month ago and is the cutest thing ever even when she’s destroying everything in sight.)

  11. 366

    In reference to my earlier comment about The New York Times’s failure to practice good journalism when covering Hillary Clinton, it is now beginning to look like Republican leaders of the most recent Benghazi investigative committee leaked the faulty information. This is not the first time that Trey Goudy has leaked twisted “facts” to the press.

    In another example of political dunderheadedness, Republican presidential wannabe, Mike Huckabee is all smiles when it comes to the idea of using federal troops or even the FBI to prevent women from getting abortions.

    Republican presidential candidate and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee is not above using the full reach of the executive branch to prevent women from getting abortions, according to multiple statements at campaign stops in Iowa. […]


  12. 368

    Religious rightwing organizations in the USA are teaming up with anti-gay governments from other countries to affect negotiations at the United Nations. These religious doofuses have already done a great deal of harm in places like Uganda and Russia. Now they are organizing their ducks, getting them all in a row, to convince the U.N. General Assembly to more narrowly define “family” in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

    The goal is to get rid of language that might result in the U.N. including families headed by same-sex couples in the Declaration.

    The negative pressure comes from many organizations, but C-FAM (Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute) is particularly active in this latest effort. They also get in a few digs at President Obama while they’re at it.

    Leftist governments, including the United States, are trying to convince the General Assembly to discard family language from the Universal Declaration [of Human Rights] and instead use phrases that critics consider to be ideologically freighted, specifically “all families” and “various forms of the family.” These types of phrases have been rejected in recent years but the Obama administration has made it a priority to have them used in this important development document.



    C-FAM argues that language declaring that “the family is the natural and fundamental unit of society” must be kept in place to prevent Europeans and Americans from having any “wiggle room” to “promote same-sex relations as families through the UN system.”

  13. 369

    Mellow Monkey! Beatrice! biped-Morgan! Lynna! All these cool people, and a pomeranian too. :-))))

    I really hope Ogvorbis comes by, and Crudely.

    Meanwhile, the headlines that keep catching my eye are (almost) always the bad ones …
    As he’d only just been released from prison 3 weeks before, for doing exactly the same thing 10 years earlier, you can’t help but wonder about psychological assessment prior to release … 🙁

  14. 372

    Hello to the new and returning folks! hugs Great to see you all.


    I’m thinking about cosplaying someone from there for the next Comic-Con, but not sure who yet.

    This seems like a great time to mention that L has been waiting for someone to order a Girl Genius costume, so he’ll have a finished example to use in advertising…

  15. 375

    This seems like a great time to mention that L has been waiting for someone to order a Girl Genius costume, so he’ll have a finished example to use in advertising…

    Wait…What? More info pretty please. 🙂

  16. 376

    At the moment, I don’t think I can. I haven’t upgraded this blog as yet (I’m still using the free WordPress blog option). I’ll check with the great and powerful Oz to see if things will be different once we move to my own domain (I’m hoping so). Until then, would it help if I just cut down on the length of comments per thread? As I mentioned yesterday, I originally set it at 50 (that was before I started the RR), then I bumped it to 200, and then 400. I can set it to 200 per page if you and others want.

  17. 377

    Tony, Ah, I was afraid that might be the case. Not that big a deal. On my phone at least more pages is worse than scrolling so set/keep your pagination point wherever it’s comfortable for you. I’ve not used WordPress, so I’m not sure which features I’ve liked at sciblogs and ftb are pay/free for the host.
    I’m good with how it is now 🙂

  18. 381


    Tony, perchance can we get a jump to comment box/bottom of thread button? It makes long threads friendlier on mobiles.

    There’s an “Add Yours” link up at the top next to “382 thoughts on “Relaxing Room”” which brings you down to the reply box. Perhaps that helps?

  19. 384

    You may have heard the news that a focus group in New Hampshire just loves Donald Trump. Well, no, not exactly. Bloomberg Politics arranged the focus group, and asked the questions.

    Here are some excerpts from statements made by focus group participants:

    […] “What they’re taking is these snippets of us saying positive things to answer questions where they asked us to state a positive thing and then representing it as if we’re all his staunchest supporters,” she explained. “And we’re not.” […]

    DeBurro told TPM that she believed the video was selectively edited and that the questions Heilemann asked were engineered to get the focus group participants to speak positively about the real estate mogul.

    “The questions were geared mostly toward the positive,” she said. “They were all ‘tell me something you like about him’ or ‘what makes him appealing to voters.’ It was all positive-focused, not ‘what do you not like’ or ‘why do you like this other candidate better.'” […]


    Sounds like a focus group put together and paid for by Trump. Bloomberg Politics has some ‘splaining to do.

  20. 385

    Here’s a Moment of Mormon Madness for our new Relaxing Room. This is an MMM that is related to illegal use of children as laborers.

    Federal labor officials have fined a Utah electrical contractor $376,300, saying the company illegally used child workers on construction sites in Utah and Oklahoma.

    The U.S. Department of Labor said Friday that Hildale-based Reliance Electric Inc. used five workers under age 14, including a 13-year-old who operated a forklift, in the city on the Utah-Arizona border.

    Hildale, Utah and its sister town of Colorado City, Arizona, are home to the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, a polygamous sect […]

    Officials say Reliance Electric also employed three child workers at a site in Bixby, Okla.

    The Labor Department says the company did not pay the children and underpaid 56 other employees.

    Salt Lake Tribune link

  21. 386

    Oh, yeah. I’ve been to that shop. Sadly, there doesn’t appear to be any Girl Genius stuff on offer, right now. Also, it is hard for me to justify the expense to Honored First Wife. Her general response to me making such requests is usually “Don’t spend money on that. Make it yourself.”
    she does kinda have a point.
    on the other hand, his Mal Reynolds outfit would give me quite a jumpstart on a Dimo costume. 🙂

  22. 387

    I quite like the Ms.Marvel art work. Reminds of early Heavy Metal for some reason. Unfortunately, Daughter does NOT like the art and is not interested in staying with the story because of that. She is drawn [rimshot] more towards anime style art.

  23. 388

    It costs money to post each product, and those weren’t selling; just because something specific’s not up there doesn’t mean he won’t make it; use the custom costume link, or message directly. Dimo is totally something he can do. There is some expense involved, but food and rent aren’t free…

  24. 389

    I just sent him a message via Etsy. Oh, I understand the expense part. I actually have an (outdated) shop on there, as well. And I try to make money off stuff I make (or at least recoup my costs) so yeah. I totally get that.

  25. 390

    Popping back in for a moment. Had to drive down the mountain into the pit of San Bernardino and barely survived. It is at least 20 degrees cooler up here on the mountain and a whole lot nicer. Busy, busy, busy.
    Has our Vet Tech Rowan checked in?

  26. 391

    You’re in San Bernadino area? I love that range. That area is where I first started learning primitive survival 20 mumble years ago back when I was stationed at Camp Pendleton. Soooo much jealousy right now. 🙂

  27. 395

    Soup has been successfully made. It is currently cooling. I’m so looking forward to it. Thank you for the recipe!

  28. 397

    Last year I burned garlic bread while preparing Thanksgiving dinner. Twice. I think I can manage to screw up soup.


    How about YOBling?

  29. 398

    I have no idea why, but today feels like the longest day ever.

    And I’m still ~45 minutes away from leaving-work-time. Which then starts the hour-plus drive home (Friday’s are especially bad in the homeward direction).

    I can’t recall the rules – are beverages allowed in the pillow fort? This may be a Scotch-and-pillow-fort commute (I peeked at the traffic….)

  30. 400

    I drink tea in the pillow fort, and who knows what Hobbes gets up to in here. Sure, why not, as long as you clean up your own spills.

    PS Hobbes says if you have something yummy, you have to share. I shudder to think what his idea of yummy would be. Probably something tuna flavored.

  31. 403

    In the house across the back alley, someone is either watching a hilarious movie or has met Hannibal Lector.
    OK. It’s probably a TV show. There is now normal (though LOUD) conversation.

  32. 404

    New page!
    Has anyone heard from 2kittehns?

    Hello to old friends! Nightjar, opposablethumbs, Beatrice, Mellow Monkey, Lynna and anyone I’ve forgot to mention! And a very special hello to our first delurker, JimB!

    To make the page jump to the last comment, go to your admin page, go to Posts (if the Relaxing Room is a post, otherwise go to Pages), click “edit” on the Relaxing Room post.
    In the edit window, just below the post’s name you’ll see the post’s address. Click the little “edit” button right next to the address. Now add “#respond” to the end of the address and click OK.
    I don’t know what will happen when a post has more than one page of comments, but the above instructions should work anyway.


    As he’d only just been released from prison 3 weeks before, for doing exactly the same thing 10 years earlier, you can’t help but wonder about psychological assessment prior to release

    No psychological assessment. His term was up and he was free to go. What’s even worse is that everyone knew that this would happen since he plainly stated his intentions to murder participants in any Pride parade during his first trial. the judges’ response? To shorten the initial sentence because the stabber had no prior convictions.
    Regardless of the court ruling, the police should have kept its eye on him, but didn’t. They were called on this and their reply showed that Israel’s police is incapable of doing anything for these types of crimes – monitoring of potential criminals is done either by the police in the case of organized crime, or by the secret service in the case of ideological crimes. Hate crimes against gay people aren’t classified as ideological crimes, so the perpetrators are ignored until they strike again.
    Mind you, even if he had been watched, I doubt they could have stopped him. Israel law enforcement is notoriously incompetent (and sometimes maliciously treasonous) when it comes to Jewish terrorists, as was demonstrated by the other terror attack that day.

    Tony and rq,
    PZ has finally stickied the racism-in-America thread.

  33. 405

    Hello, wmdkitty

    Just to clarify – you need to add “#respond” without the quotation marks. The final address should look like this, but without the spaces and with the proper dots:
    queershoop (dot) wordpress (dot) com/2015/07/28/relaxing-room/#respond

  34. 407

    Thanks Anne. I’m nothing if not neat (like my Scotch).

    Hobbes is more than welcome to share the Scotch, although it’s typically more “peat-y” than “tuna-y”. You can tell him it “tastes like the sea”. 🙂

    Hello back to AlexanderZ.

    And……there’s a car fire just past the home freeway exit which has closed a lane and the exit ramp in that location. Lovely.

    Might need to make it a double, Tony.

  35. 412

    Okay so… time for a confession… back in the days of the great Planet Zeppelin (a music forum for Zeppelin fans), I was the owner/proprietor of what we called the Black Dog Pub. I have just regained access to our old stores, which I’m now bringing here.

    And since it’s a virtual pub limited only by imagination, guess what? We have what you want. I promise. If you want it, it’s in stock.

    Unlimited, too…

    So what’s yer’ poison, folks? Food or drink? Alcohol or virgin? Sweet or spicy? Even better, you can back here and make it yourself if you want.

    (Sorry, Tony.) 😀

  36. 413

    I don’t know why I didn’t think of it until just now- I sent PZ an invite.
    (knowing full well that he’s a busy man and likely wouldn’t make it much if at all; I just wanted to offer)

  37. 416

    I started from dried chickpeas, simmered for a looooong time, then put them through the food-processor.
    I may also have included some actual peas.

  38. 418

    Ah-ha! I found the “Add yours” button that sends you to the comment box, it’s not there in portrait on my phone but is if I rotate to landscape. It works!

  39. 419

    Biped!? (formerly Morgan!?):

    JimB, have you ever tasted Laphroaig Single Malt? I tried it not long ago, neat, and it tasted like a mouth full of dirt. That is truly an acquired taste.

    I have, and agree with your assessment.

    Single malts all have different/distinct flavors. I was fortunate enough to be friends with Scotch enthusiasts and was able to sample many different ones to determine which I liked and which I didn’t. Laphroaig is one of the latter. 🙂 But others from that same region (Islay) are different – the two I mentioned earlier as my favorites are Islays. (I just finished a bit of the Lagavulin 16, which is my “go to” Scotch.)

    A common theme of the Islays is their “peaty” nature – some more than others. If you’re willing, you might prefer a Highland Scotch – different region of Scotland, different flavors. I found Macallan 12 to be pretty approachable, and pretty common in bars, etc.

    Just one person’s opinion – far be it for me to encroach on our host’s area of expertise.

  40. 420

    The add yours does take me to the bottom of the first page, but then I have to go to the second page and do it again. I assume that if this thread goes to a third page, I’ll have to go through the process again. But still, it’s worth the effort.

    I am just finishing up a beer, so I’ll just wish everyone a good evening, and retire to the pillow fort.

  41. 421

    Hello folks. Thanks for doing this Tony. I’ll have a virgin Caesar, salted rim, enough of the hot stuff to make me weep, and a full celery stalk for garnish. I won’t eat the celery you understand, but it is traditional.

    I was surprised at just how sad I was over PZ pulling the plug.on the Lounge even though I’ve been scarce there for some time now. You folk mean a lot to me; my avoidance has nothing to do with any of you, it’s just a coping mechanism that I can’t seem to shake despite how ineffective it is. A band mate once said: “For a big guy, you’re really small.” I took offence, but it’s true. Being invisible was the safest way to deal with my father and it’s marked me. Once a mouse, always a mouse.

    Has anyone one contacted JAL?

    Improbable Joe! I was thinking of you just yesterday. I got a new (to me) chorus pedal and realised I had no one to talk to about it. Mind you, you’re a guitar-straight-into-amp sorta player IIRC…

  42. 422

    So my current favorite scotch is the Glenmorangie Lasanta. That it was finished in sherry casks is hella prominent, which is why I like it so much. I adore the flavor a sherry cask lends to a good scotch aged in it.

    Anyone want a glass? 😀

    (I will say… I actually like Laphroaig. I think it may be the uniqueness, but then I’ve always enjoyed a smokey/peaty scotch, as well.)

  43. 428


    That is truly an acquired taste.

    I didn’t find it to be. I love the stuff, have since I first had it. I don’t drink it that often because it’s not cheap, but there’s no whisky to match a 15 year old Laphroig.

  44. 430

    YOBling? I think I rather like that. Thanks.
    I never understood the appeal of Scotch (or bourbon, etc). But… No there is no but. I just don’t like the stuff. On the other hand, I really like absinthe and Salmiakki Koskenkorva although none of my friends do, so there is that.
    Busy day tomorrow so I hope everyone has a good day/night.

  45. 431

    Heh. I find that gin tastes like floor cleaner, and I loathe the taste of agave in any form.

    Bourbon is fit for mixing, but nothing else. Whiskey is an acceptable beverage, but only if I can’t get whisky, preferably Islay. (Putting mixers in that is sacrilege ). I also love a nice brandy (grape, apple, pear or otherwise).

  46. 433

    YOB – I looked up Salmiakki Koskenkorva and found this: Finland’s Koskenkorva has come up with this liqueur based on their award-winning vodka and that peculiarly Scandinavian commodity: salt-liquorice. We know, we know – it sounds vile, but our fair-haired friends absolutely adore it.

    As I keep saying – To each his own. Good night dear Horde.

  47. 434

    Thanks chigau, that means a lot to me.

    It feels good to put in an appearance. New venue maybe, or perhaps I’m back on the upswing. Here’s hoping.


    I got the MXR Stereo Chorus. It’s fully analog, not that I care all that much about that. I’m no purest, digital, analog, either’s fine so long as it sounds good, and this one sounds great. Not as good as the built in chorus on my JC 120, but then nothing can really beat an amp that separates the two speakers and does the chorusing physically out in the air. But because I’m running a RC 300 looper I can’t use the chorus on the amp without affecting all the various loops, and I don’t want that.

    I spent a lot of time listening to youtube clips of various choruses. It came down to a choice between the Boss Chorus Ensemble, the TC Electronics Corona, the MXR Analog Chorus, and the MXR Stereo Chorus. I really wanted one that had an eq so I could tweak the tone, my rig and guitar are pretty idiosyncratic so I didn’t really trust that what I’d heard on-line would be what came out of my amp. It took me 10-15 minutes of knob twiddling and I’ve got a sound that I really like. Success!

    I ended up choosing the Stereo version over the Boss and the MXR Analog because the eq on those are simple cut filters. The Stereo will also boost which gives it more versatility. The Corona didn’t make the cut because of its Tone Print feature. You can upload special settings created by pro musician using a usb cable or your phone. I could see myself going down that rabbit hole and finding something unique that I really liked. But what happens five years from now? If I manage to wipe those settings will I be able to get them back? Experience with phones and tablets says that it’s likely I’d have to keep upgrading. Stuff that. My guitar is over 20 years old and my amp older still, I want my pedals to last as long.

    The downside is that it’s an 18 volt pedal. It’s got lots of headroom which is nice, but either you have to run it with two 9v batteries or buy a separate power supply. I try to avoid batteries if at all possible, there’s enough harmful waste in the world without unnecessary adding more. I got the pedal used without the supply and that was a pain because 18v, centre negative, 2.1mm jacked power supplies seem to be really rare in Australia. There was only one place selling them that I could find.

    It’s also pretty large as pedals go, not good for a cramped pedal board. Mind you, it seems like the 18v thing and the larger size means that they’re not much sought after so I got it pretty cheap.

    TL;DR: I’m really like it. Rich sounding and eminently tweakable in happy yellow box. Perfect.

  48. 435


    In reference to my earlier comment about The New York Times’s failure to practice good journalism when covering Hillary Clinton, it is now beginning to look like Republican leaders of the most recent Benghazi investigative committee leaked the faulty information.

    Why am I not surprised?
    Bourbon is horrible stuff. A waste of perfectly good fermentation processes.

  49. 436

    Well, I haven’t gone to bed yet. It feels so good to see all the familiar nyms. Even those that have become infrequent visitors. Peeps have dared to present themselves as real humans here, or in the former Lounge, and the respect I hold for them is great. And I care. And I hope more of the human species learns to care. Otherwise, we are all going down, so to speak.

    Points to whomever recognizes the following….: We are all bozos on this bus.

  50. 437

    Oh, and in case you’re interested Nathan, my board also has:

    -Boss RC-300 Loop Station
    -EHX Knockout Eq
    -EHX Superego
    -Boss MO-2 Multi Overtone
    -Boss OC-3 Super Octave
    -Vox Wah
    -A half-rack parametric eq for when I use my Ebow.
    (The 18v power supply was a pain, but the 16v AC needed for this was damn near impossible to find.)
    -And a Boss SD-1 Super Overdrive that’s quivering in it’s circuit board because it’s about to be modded all to hell and gone.
    All of this is controlled by a Joyo PLX8 loop board.
    I’ve also got a Peterman acoustic stompbox driver mounted under the scratch plate on my guitar. It runs out to the looper and the second channel on my amp to give me some basic percussions sounds. I installed a TRS jack in the guitar to carry the extra signal.

    If you’re interested, I’m happy to talk about any of this stuff….at length apparently….

  51. 440

    Hey rq. I thought of you a couple of days ago too. Ms. Fishy, the Small Fry and I went to the Australian premier of Tim Minchen’s musical adaptation of Matilda. He likes playing with time signatures, every one of the tunes seemed to have bars of 3 or 5 inserted here and there and I remembered you mentioning how you liked that.

    I bought the sheet music and he has a funny little bit in the beginning where explains the chordal structure he based it around. Some kind of close voiced 13th IIRC, very beautiful sounding and versatile because you can drop just about any note in the bass and make the same figure function in different ways harmonically speaking. That Minchen guy is one smart, and educated, musician.

  52. rq

    Allo, FossilFishy!
    It’s very nice to see you, too. Come September, I’m going to attempt to re-insert myself into choir/music life, so I’ll probably complain about new/difficult/weird pieces here. We’ll see, though. There’s a Choir Social Weekend coming up and I’m all kinds of apprehensive about it, because last time I did something social with Choir, I’d lost the attraction of interacting with these people. And it wasn’t even a whole weekend.
    And I have no idea how to find replacement music, though I may buy a guitar and try to force myself into it at home and on my own. We shall see.
    I actually had a piece back in spring that I wanted to talk about, but now I forget what it was (time changes! whee!).


    The Pomeranian comment is from last night but for some reason it didn’t post last night but it did this morning. :/

    Also, small note referring to Pharyngula: PZ put up the racism thread (a new one) which will most likely have a permanent sidebar link. I would like to encourage everyone to comment and/or post things of racist relevance there (as they come up, so no need to go out of your way, but if you see something…), and since it says ‘America’ and not ‘USAmerica’, posts re: Canada, Brazil, Haiti, etc. and all other American (north and south) countries are most welcome. It’s been rather lonely going, though Tony is good company, but hopefully with the permanent link, we can have more and varied participation there.
    And just a small request, because I feel people here might understand: for those of us who are white, can we please refrain from comments about how ‘police were aggressive to me once, so I totally understand / so I can believe it’s a lot worse for black people’? I can understand the desire to try and empathize in this way, but if there’s one thing I’ve learned in the last year, it’s that we as white people will never understand, and it’s useless to express our own experiences, as if those are necessary for us to believe and listen to the black people who have been speaking loudly for years. I don’t think we will ever (barring an absolute police state) have the same all-encompassing, visceral anxiety re: police brutality, being white people.
    (Does that sound dismissive? I don’t know how else to word it… Because here I would like to separate individual, terrible experiences with police (esp. regarding things like rape) that have a similar (if not the same) effect (which means ‘individual’ might be a bad word, because sexual assault victims as a group, I think, are treated terribly by the justice system, in general). Maybe someone wants to curate a thread on the intersection of police and sexual assaults, which is another aspect of general policing that needs attention.)
    I do encourage sharing of stories of observed or noticed racism. Or positive stories about racism being called out, in big or small ways. Because it’s important also to note these small, individual manifestations.
    I’ll probably post a version of this comment over there, too.
    Please let me know if the above comment has been utterly insensitive in some way.

  53. 442

    Let’s try this again…

    Knock knock

    Hey all, sorry if this is my second first post. I think the one last night got sucked into the internet’s sock drawer.

    Thank you, Tony for letting us all hang out here. I wiped my feet before I came in. I hope shoes aren’t required,
    Good to see so many familiar folks!

  54. 445

    Hi all!
    I tweaked the comments per page count from 400 down to 200, so that should make it easier for people on mobile phones.

  55. 446

    So many people, all here.
    You make me happy. WElcome to the old and new faces.

    I’m still in the hat.making mania, so I’m making one for me in denim. I cut up an onld jeans of mine, which I wore until it threatened to disintegrate on my ass. And even though I’m doing the right thing, using an oldjeans instead of throwing ita way and buying fabric, something in me yelled DO NOT CUT CLOTHING!!!!
    Some lessons from childhood stick

  56. 447

    This comment falls into a category I’ll call “the company you keep.”

    In this case Donald Trump did not make the offensive comments, but one of his top aides did. I’m reminded of other Republicans hiring white supremacists and then a photo of the guy in a Nazi uniform shows up and said guy is fired. The question remains, why was the obnoxious guy hired in the first place?

    […] Donald Trump’s presidential campaign said late Friday that it was investigating a top adviser who reportedly called President Barack Obama a “Socialist Marxist Islamo Fascist Nazi Appeaser” and wrote other racially charged, birther-tinged Facebook posts.

    Business Insider surfaced the posts earlier Friday from Trump adviser Sam Nunberg’s Facebook profile. Nunberg had been re-hired by Trump for his 2016 campaign […]

    The report showed that Nunberg, like his boss, also bought into the “birther” conspiracy theory that Obama actually was born in Kenya. He made references to “universal Kenyan health care” and “Kenyan socialism” in his Facebook posts.

    Nunberg also wrote a racially charged post about Rev. Al Sharpton’s daughter and took shots at Republican politicians including former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, according to Business Insider.

    Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski told CNN that he was working to verify whether or not Nunberg wrote the posts. […]

    For his part, Nunberg told CNN that he wasn’t great with social media and asserted “anything that was posted under my name does not mean I posted it.”

    “I would also point out that all of these things were done before Mr. Trump’s campaign, if I even did them — which I deny,” he added.


  57. 448

    Jimmy Carter thinks the USA is no longer a democracy:

    Former President Jimmy Carter believes the United States’ campaign finance system is so broken that the country is no longer a functional democracy. Appearing on the Thom Hartmann show this week, Carter said that “unlimited political bribery” is “the essence of getting the nominations for president or to elect the president.” He said the same problems are present in elections for “U.S. senators and congress members.”

    Carter’s comments mirror the conclusions of a Princeton University study released last year. Author Martin Gilens found that “ordinary citizens have virtually no influence over what their government does in the United States.” Meanwhile, “economic elites and interest groups, especially those representing business, have a substantial degree of influence.”

    Giles study, which he conducted with Northwestern’s Benjamin I. Page, found the United States was more of a system of “Economic Elite Domination” than a majoritarian democracy.

    Video of Carter speaking is also available at the link.

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