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Podcast 81 Transcript

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A transcript for Episode 81: "Does the Dog Die?" (2013-06-04).

Pronoiac set up a Fanscribed page, and this transcript came from there.


jingle: (theme music)

mathowie: All right! Episode 81 of the Metafilter Podcast. Whoo!

jessamyn: 81 is a great number. Josh? Back me up.

cortex: It's a square. Heck, it's a fourth power, really.

jessamyn: Thank you!

mathowie: (noncommittal "mmm")

jessamyn: Episode 81 of the Metafilter Podcast.

mathowie: So, geez, what's happened in the last month?

It's June. I guess this is--

jessamyn: This is barely June.

mathowie: Yeah, this is all about May.

jessamyn: Yeah, last podcast was what, April 30th.

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: So this would be complete May and a couple days in June.

mathowie: Did you go--you went on some cool trips, didn't you, Jessamyn, go to (speaking quickly) some meetups?

jessamyn: Speedups?

mathowie: Meetups.

jessamyn: Oh. Speedups!

cortex: You know, speedups! You hang out with a bunch of other people from Metafilter, you take a bunch of uppers, and you get really excited.

jessamyn: (babbles excitedly) Dabadah-ba-ba-ba, I live in New England!

Did I?

jessamyn: Didn't I go to my meetups in April?

cortex: It's like that episode of Star Trek.

mathowie: I don't know.

jessamyn: No, it was in April.

mathowie: Oh, maybe I'm...oh, ok.

jessamyn: Gosh, maybe I'm wrong, though. Oh, this'll be bad if I forget the meetups.

cortex: Well, I don't think you talked about them.

jessamyn: I went to Plymouth, New Hampshire, and talked about Open Library and the pirate ghost ship that is Open Library, but I was just back from Kansas when I talked to you guys and had the fun meetup with donnagirl and hellojed and EtherealBligh...Ivan Fyodorovich, and John Ralston showed up. Josh, did you get the birthday thing that I sent you in the mail?

cortex: I did, I got my little cat drawing in the mail.

jessamyn: In the post?

cortex: Yes. Yes. It arrived via postal carrier.

jessamyn: Yeah. I like that.

mathowie: Sweet.

jessamyn: So, yeah, no, I don't think I did any travelling. I can look at my calendar to see what I actually did.

mathowie: (laughs) No, I was...

jessamyn: I joined and quit the History Committee. I have a thing that says "Lydia Lunch", which I think means I had lunch with my friend Lydia, not that I saw Lydia Lunch?

cortex: (laughs)

jessamyn: But, you know, being middle-aged, I may have seen Lydia Lunch. I'm seeing Weird Al Yankovic this weekend!

cortex: Yay! [??]

mathowie: Ooh. I heard he puts on a good show.

jessamyn: Yeah. No, he's playing at an opera house! He plays opera houses around here.

cortex: Sweet.

mathowie: Awesome.

jessamyn: I mean, they're little opera houses.

But yeah, Jim and I are going, I'm looking forward to it. No, May was just one vast wasteland of work and--

mathowie: Spring thaw.

jessamyn: Helping my friend Boris move.

mathowie: Sweet! Alright.

jessamyn: And I had Airbnb-ers stay at my house!

mathowie: Mmm.

jessamyn: Which is like getting paid two hundred dollars to clean your apartment.

mathowie and cortex: (laugh)

jessamyn: It's the best.

mathowie: Is it almost profitable, I guess, if you had a couple each week?

jessamyn: Yeah! I mean, if I had a couple each weekend, I would pay my rent with it.

mathowie: Is it like... oh, wow. And it's sort of illegal in New York now, I think?

jessamyn: And San Francisco!

mathowie: Wow.

jessamyn: It's been interesting watching that happen. In fact, I think there was an Ask Metafilter question about it! Maybe it was somewhere else. But basically, it's technically against the law a lot of places, but most places don't give a shit.

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: But places that have serious landlord and tenant legislation, yeah.

mathowie: Or a hotel lobby.

jessamyn: Right. Yeah, yeah, basically somebody asked just a couple days ago.

mathowie: "How do I get away with it?"

jessamyn: "I want visitors to stay in my apartment, but I'd prefer to not break the law." And there are some places where they're more hardass than others. And it's funny, of course, because Airbnb is so online, tech-nerd friendly. I mean, I rent out my whole place, so I just leave.

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: nerd friendly. I mean I rent out my whole place, so I just leave.

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: But, yeah, I could theoretically not live in my place for eight days and pay my rent.

mathowie: I think it was legal in New York if it was a dedicated unit that nobody lives in or something? There was some legal definition of, like, nobody lives there and then it's cool?

jessamyn: But you can't like rent out a spare bedroom or like make a bedroom out of a closet.

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: I mean, it's hilarious; I think somebody else made a post on Metafilter about..

jessamyn: Oh! Help me out here. It was like a crazy tumblr blog ..

mathowie: Oh yeah..

jessamyn: .. of like the worst apartments in Manhattan.

mathowie: Yeah.

cortex: Oh yeah.

mathowie: And how much they cost for rent and like rail the windows.

jessamyn: How ridiculous! There were shelves built out of, you know, packing crates ..

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: .. with a curtain and it was eight hundred dollars [800 USD] you know? What was that? Did we talk about that?

mathowie: Ahh it seems like it was in the last couple of weeks. There's probably a tumblr blog like, "Worst Apartments" or something?

jessamyn: Yeah. Josh do you remember?

cortex: I don't remember any keywords

there was like ...

mathowie: (like he is typing out what he is saying) N-Y-C tumblr ...

cortex: .. apartment Manhattan ..

jessamyn: (To Matt) Oh yeah. That's going to work.

mathowie: (Laughs)

cortex: Narrow it down!

mathowie: I've got like ten blogs linking to it? So let me see if I can find which ones ... the actual worst, the worst room!

jessamyn: is that what it is called?

mathowie: Yeah. It's worst room dot com. I thought it was worst room dot tumblr, but yeah.

jessamyn: Nd did we talk about it on MetaFilter?

mathowie: Um it was on metafilter recently

I don't think it was on the last podcast time. I mean I think it's in this .. let's see.. (tongue clicking) Mushroom! (laughs to himself)

jessamyn: Well we can talk about it right NOW! It was great!

mathowie: (Laughing) It was the worst! It was great!

jessamyn: Right. It was The Great Worst ... apparently was on mashable which is what's given me the most

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: And buzzfeed and everything else ... (To Matt) When was it on metafilter?

mathowie: (Audible Sigh of Frustration)

jessamyn: Was it before that? Please let it be before that ...

mathowie: (sigh) I don't know that ...

jessamyn: I would like to think that buzzzfeed gets their stuff from us? Not the other way around.

mathowie: (Chuckles)

mathowie: Worst room, worst room...

jessamyn: Oh, but maybe that's right! We posted about it on May 8 at 10:00 and as near as I can tell Buzzfeed posted about it May 8- please, please, please...

mathowie: Probably earlier.

jessamyn: At 3 P.M.! Fuck you in the ear, Buzzfeed! Ooo.

cortex: That's the spirit.

mathowie: Oh, nice, going out of the gate.

jessamyn: Well, I

mathowie: Oh! Nice! Going out of the gate!

jessamyn: Well! I'm done. You know, uh, swearing. I'm DONE done DONE swearing.

(mathowie and cortex laugh)

mathowie: I'm over it.

jessamyn: Does that make sense? I've just had some coffee and got back from the gym.

cortex: Swearing Lent is over, is what you are saying?

jessamyn: Is that something that Catholics do?

mathowie: (Chuckles)

cortex: Yeah maybe it is just a Catholic thing. You have Lent ....

jessamyn: (Laughing)

mathowie: Is today Mardi-Swears ?

cortex: It's like representative of The Big J's 40 Days and Nights in the desert so coming up on towards Easter

mathowie: nights in the desert so coming up on towards Easter, I think, or maybe specifically coming up on towards Good Friday-

jessamyn: Do you have a non-religious way to explain this to me?

mathowie: Okay, so what happens was Jesus went in the desert for 40 days and 40 nights, right? That was part of his whole thing?

jessamyn: Jesus is a religious way of explaining it.

mathowie: No, no, no, you can take this just as a secular mythology way of explaining it.

cortex: Are you citing Buzzfeed?

jessamyn: Oh, as if he's just a guy?

mathowie: Anyway, the story is this guy who went into this thing and so Lent is this sort of metaphorical show of solidarity with your bro there, where you also give up things.

jessamyn: You give up a thing to pretend

cortex: where you also give up things for forty days and forty nights

jessamyn: You give up a thing to pretend it's making you ...

cortex: Exactly.

jessamyn: Okay. I mean, I sorta knew that?

cortex: So you know, you give up chocolate or, you know, scotch ...

jessamyn: Celibacy!

cortex: Celibacy, yes. You give up celibacy and have sex every day for forty days to show Jesus how much you love him.

mathowie: Awwwww.....

cortex: And then go back to being chased ..

jessamyn: I like that.

cortex: So yeah. It's a thing. It's one of the things that I have sort of a fonder picture of than some of the other stuff just because it's kinda like the religious practice version

of a dare?

jessamyn: Shut up!

cortex: It's like reality tv as a private act. You know. Without all the cameramen.

mathowie: (Chuckles)

jessamyn: No, no, no. I hear you. Interesting. Especially if you pick something complicated.

cortex: Yes. Yes.

jessamyn: Like I could give up lobster and it's fine because i never eat it.

cortex: Yeah.

jessamyn: So it's not really giving it up.

cortex: I am pretty sure that I sarcastically gave up a number of things

(Jessamyn and Mathowie laugh)
.. for Lent over the years.

jessamyn: I remember the boy from the Catholic school who told me he was giving up celibacy.

cortex: (chuckles)

mathowie: Augh.

jessamyn: Which was a great line but it didn't really work.

cortex: Yeah.

jessamyn: I was like, "Good luck with that!" (laughs)

cortex: I may have tried to give up cleaning my room one time.

jessamyn: (laughs) Okay.

cortex: I don't think that stuck.

mathowie: And then yelling at your parents.

jessamyn: I've seen pictures of that room, Josh, on the Internet.

mathowie: I'm identifying the cheeses.

cortex: Oh, by the time I was in that room I was well and truly out of the whole being Catholic thing.

jessamyn: Oh, that reminds me! I promised my sister I would send her a picture of your sunburst bedroom.

cortex: Oh, yeah.

jessamyn: Because I was talking to her about cool paint jobs that people had done and...

cortex: It is pretty cool.

mathowie: Did you ever make it... (laughs)

jessamyn: Did you like it? Do you still like waking up to it every day?

cortex: Yeah! It's kind of weird having stripes in the bedroom after the fact when it's not brand new, but it's like eh, it's kinda cool.

jessamyn: Good!

cortex: I like that our room is geometric like that. It's got something going on visually.

jessamyn: I'm glad you still like it. So someone else is going to have to be organizing structure today, because it's just not gonna be me.

cortex: (laughs)

mathowie: Oh, yeah, yeah.

jessamyn: It's just not gonna be me.

cortex: How about some Projects?

mathowie: Yes, Projects! What are your favorite Projects? We're in Projects world.

cortex: There was this nice little Project called Maslow's Graph, by user...

jessamyn: I loved Maslow's Graph! Oh, very exciting. I loved that one. Keep going, sorry.

mathowie: curuinor [ˈkjɝɪˌnɔɹ]? curuinor [ˈkjɝɪˌnɔɹ]?

jessamyn: curui [ˈkjuˌɹi]... curu [ˈkuˌɹu]... curuinor [kəˈɹuɪnɚ].

cortex: curuinor [kəˈɹuɪnɚ].

jessamyn: co-ruinor [ˌkoʊˈɹuɪnɚ]?

cortex: curuinor [kəˈɹuɪnɚ]? I don't know.

jessamyn: Oh! I know this guy. Oh, no, I don't.

I know the real guy named John Doe and this guy says his name is John Doe but it isn't John Doe.

cortex: (laughs) You're taking us on an emotional rollercoaster right here.

jessamyn: Sorry. Sorry.

mathowie: (laughs) Sea-ruiner?

cortex: Well, we'll find out in the podcast thread.

jessamyn: (emits two slightly vacuumlike tones (B3-E4))

cortex: But yeah, no, it's neat. It's like the whole idea of taking Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs and then working out--

jessamyn: Which, can you say five words about Maslow's Hierarchy, because for everybody who might not...?

cortex: Oh, yeah. It's a basic triangle of basic escalating needs from basic food, shelter,

water, heat, clothing--

jessamyn: Basic survival stuff.

cortex: Basic survival stuff, and then you move on to some basic... oh, I'm just going to Google it, because I'm going to murder this.

mathowie: Just follow the link.

jessamyn: Well, I think the whole idea, basically, is that humans have to go after various things, and so there are some people who are just really focused on getting their basic needs met, but then once you get your basic needs met you can move up this hierarchy as

exemplified by Maslow, where there are things that are kind of more rarefied, I guess, above that.
Once you have a house to live in, then you can think about getting laid! And then once you can think about getting laid, then you can think about maybe forming relationships! And then...

cortex: Whether that's making you happy, yeah.

mathowie: Are you fulfilled?

cortex: Yeah.

jessamyn: And I always thought it was weird, because at the top of it was learning to follow society's rules, which, of course, when I learned about this when I was fifteen, I was like behhh! That's so stupid!

cortex: (chuckles) Fuck that.

jessamyn: And now I'm an older lady that doesn't jaywalk as much, and I'm like, ahhh! Ahahaha!

cortex: Well, it's not just that at the top, either.

jessamyn: Sure. Sure, sure, sure.

cortex: Okay, so the one I'm looking at, I pulled up one at random, and it starts with physiological--so yeah, food, water and shelter and such.

mathowie: Yeah. Safety.

jessamyn: Stay alive stuff. Keep your body alive.

cortex: And then safety, so sort of just basically security and stability beyond just literally being alive during each moment, and then after that love and belonging, so friendship, family, sexual intimacy,

and after that comes esteem, so confidence and self-esteem--

jessamyn: Status.

cortex: And having a sense for mutual respect for those around you. And then self-actualization, which is all the stuff you do--

jessamyn: See? That was the thing. Self-actualization is, yeah.

cortex: Well, and, you know, this is an interesting way of putting it.

mathowie: So what does this thing do? It's something to do with Markov nets?

jessamyn: What?

mathowie: This actual Project.

jessamyn: Wait, which thing? The Project, or Maslow's Hierarchy?

mathowie: No, this Project.

jessamyn: It's a different way to look at those same lists of things and not have them be in a crazy triangle.

mathowie: Oh.

jessamyn: And have you understand them different if you see different relationships between. At least, that's how I grokked it. I don't know about you, Josh.

cortex: Yeah, no, it's a way of... the problem with the pyramid thing is there's not a whole lot of information of it there other than the order things go in, whereas this is an attempt to break down the individual pieces of it in terms of how they're connected to one another, because not everything necessarily has a direct connection to everything else, but there's more than just above and below.

jessamyn: But some things really, really do.

cortex: Yeah. And it emphasizes how there is this interrelationship between a lot of these concepts, where meeting your various needs isn't a matter of just checking something off and okay, well, I'm done worrying about that. You've got to account for the fact that different things affect each other. Which is maybe sort of useful for thinking about how people can hit bottom in a bad situation. It's not just like, "Well, you lost your job and that sucks, but that's your job!"

You've still got other stuff that connects to other things that may affect your family, that may affect your stability, that can cascade to taking...

jessamyn: But there's a lot more interrelatedness with the things. It's not just climbing a ladder and you're either up one rung or down one rung, right.

mathowie and cortex: Yeah.

jessamyn: Yeah. And I'm not usually into that kind of collagey woo stuff, but I felt like this really made you think about it differently in a way that was useful and creative, not in a "Oh, what if what you thought was real isn't really real," you know? It was much more interesting than that.

So yeah, curuinor [ˌkoʊˈɹuɪnɚ], or whatever--maybe they will listen to this and let us know how to pronounce their name--yeah, I enjoyed that.

mathowie: I liked the Mitchell & Webb MetaFilter mashup, which is interesting in... so Mitchell & Webb is a--

jessamyn: Didn't I make you explain this to me already?

mathowie: I don't think we, yeah, I think we recorded... no! I think I had to explain it to you, I think, over IM.

jessamyn and cortex: (laugh)

mathowie: But yes. Mitchell & Webb is a popular comedy--

jessamyn: Someone had to explain this to me.

mathowie: Yeah. It's a popular comedy duo in the UK, very funny dudes, and someone basically broke down a hundred topics that come up on Metafilter a lot, and then found a Mitchell & Webb appropriate--

jessamyn: (excitedly) That's who that guy is!

mathowie: --YouTube. It's hilarious.

jessamyn: I see that guy, like, people screencap him on mlkshk all the time. I had no idea who the hell he was. Thank you so much.

mathowie: Oh, yeah, it was all spawned by a comment--

jessamyn: Josh, I must have made you explain it to me also.

cortex: Maybe. (laughs)

mathowie: It was all spawned by a comment from six months ago. It just said, "For the longest time I have had the theory that for every FPP there is a somewhat relevant Mitchell & Webb sketch." So someone went about to do that, and this is insane and they did it and it's funny.

jessamyn: Brilliant. malevolent, thank you very much for that. Wow.

mathowie: It's a weird Venn diagram of people who understand both things, but it's pretty good.

jessamyn: That's neat!

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: Well, keeping along the lines of navel-gazing Projects--

mathowie: (chuckles)

jessamyn: --I really enjoyed jjwiseman's Secret Metafilter. All Secret Metafilter does is basically a way to find older Metafilter threads that are way off the front page, because Metafilter threads stay open for--how long? 30 days?

mathowie: Thirty days, yeah.

cortex: Thirty days.

jessamyn: And Ask Metafilter--this doesn't do Ask Metafilter, right?

mathowie: No.

jessamyn: You know, Ask Metafilter stuff stays around for-ev-ER!

mathowie: A year.

jessamyn: And so it's kind of a neat way to see what things are still getting added. Although the answer seems to mostly be homunculus.

cortex: (laughs)

jessamyn: But, you know, he's off churning away doing his thing! Adding relevant links to things you might care about.

mathowie: Whoa! The Rob Ford crack cocaine thing was from almost a month ago? Geez. Did that ever... did they ever prove that that was the mayor? I'm still waiting for closure on that. You know what I'm talking about?

cortex: Yeah, it's--

jessamyn: Rob Ford, the crack-smoking mayor.

mathowie: Yeah. (chuckles) Like, everyone says who's seen the video, they're almost 100% sure it's him, but he's still in office and he hasn't been ousted.

jessamyn: But all his people quit.

mathowie: Oh, that's true, yeah. So weird. And if we want to continue MeFi navel gazing we should also mention the Oracle.

jessamyn: Although Gawker said that it had lost touch with the video's owner, whatever the fuck that means.

mathowie: Euhhh.

jessamyn: Yeah.

mathowie: So another Project MeFi-related was the Oracle of MeFi, which is just funny good comments highlighted around the place.

jessamyn: Oh, by Foci for Analysis!

mathowie: Yeah. And at first I was like, "Oh, this is going to totally double up with the Best Of blog," but this is mostly wisecracks and wacky stuff and it's funny.

jessamyn: Well, and we don't point out... there's a whole rubric that goes into what goes on the Best Of blog, not like it's hard work or whatever. But it's stuff that you're trying to kind of get across Metafilter to other people, you know?

mathowie: Yeah. Yeah.

jessamyn: Like, it's not necessarily for the kinda hardcore Metafilter people, and it's not for

kinda the usual suspects, which means even though sonascope is a treasure--

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: --we do not tend to feature him as often as maybe he could be featured. Yeah, no, I peeked at this and I really, I enjoyed it.

mathowie: Any Projects you loved, Jessamyn?

jessamyn: Besides the one I just talked about?

mathowie: Yeah. Secret Metafilter.

jessamyn: (laughs) I liked--

mathowie: Did you see the vector river map that Nelson did?

jessamyn: Yes.

mathowie: That's just crazy. I can't believe it doesn't crash my browser.

But a vector image of every single... where the heck is it? There's the live map. Wow! It seems like it should crash your browser.

cortex: Computers, man. It's crazy what they can do these days.

jessamyn: No, I just basically, as normal, Maslow's graph was kind of my other choice, and then of course I would like to mention my friend Scram, who does her podcast about Los Angeles stuff.

mathowie: Huh.

jessamyn: And it's interesting, because for a long time miss lynnster was our Metafilter

person who was doing L.A.-centered stuff. But Scram and her partner do these funny bus tours of Los Angeles, but they started putting together some of the stuff that they know, because they just know a ton of stuff--

mathowie: Wow!

jessamyn: On this podcast, and it's actually been kind of cool.

mathowie: Wow, I've been meaning to--

jessamyn: You would probably really like it.

mathowie: Yeah, I used to live there! I should subscribe to it. And there's a Huell Howser episode! Sweet.

cortex: (laughs) Man.

jessamyn: Yes. Well, I think that's what kicked the whole thing off?

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: Because I remember talking about Huell Howser and how much love people had for him.

mathowie: Oh God.

jessamyn: But yeah. They run this little tour thing. It's just really cool! It's a thing that everybody should do about the place that they love, you know, get a little bus tour and... Because I remember going to see LeLiLo up at Bar Harbor and going on a Bar Harbor tour on the boat, and he just got to tell a whole bunch of goofy stories about the place he loved, and people were super into it! I kind of feel like that's an idea that should catch on more.

mathowie: I wish there was, I was walking around this morning wishing that I could make an iPad, iPhone app for the city I live in for out-of-towners. We just had--

jessamyn: Well, you can! There's a whole bunch of VR kind of things that you can layer stuff over, Layers used to be the main one, but I don't know if there's a more iPad-specific one.

mathowie: Well, I was just thinking, like an iOS actual app.

jessamyn: I just posted... well, but that's what I mean. I mean, have you looked at the Layers stuff?

mathowie: No, no, I was thinking more like - there should be a plug'n'chug sort of - you could make an iOS app about any city on earth if you just say, "put in three map points, write a paragraph, and show me a photograph," you could make a framework for this.

jessamyn: What I'm saying is, there's these Augmented Reality tools that enable you to build stuff on top of it. And they're cool. And then you, the person, can build on top of it -

mathowie: Layer. Ohh.

jessamyn: But that it also has the geolocated framework, and so you can give it to--like, I would love to have that for Airbnb people! Like, here's the layer for Randolph, and it'll tell you how to get to the coffee shop and how to get to the gym and information about Justin Morgan, and there's some pretty neat things! I don't know why they haven't taken off more aggressively. William Gibson wrote about them in whatever his last book was.

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: But I think the idea of VR scares people off, because they think it's stupid.

mathowie: (laughs) Well, I'm not saying you should stand in the street and pan your iPhone around for an augmented layer of... just show people a nice map with little drop pins that say "Here's a good breakfast place! And if you have half a day to kill, go to this winery," and stuff like that where I live.

jessamyn: Well, I think you could do that with Google Maps, right? It's just...

mathowie: Yeah. There should be a core framework for... I can't believe someone doesn't have a turnkey sort of site for this. Because it would be so standardized from city to city to city, it's just... you know.

jessamyn: Kinda tour stuff. But what I'm saying is, I think that's what the Layers stuff does. Like, you can get stuff for Disney World, for instance.

mathowie: Oh, yeah.

jessamyn: Just plug it in, you go to Disney, it gives you all the information.

mathowie: All the demo screen--

jessamyn: I mean, there's five or six apps that all compete to do the same thing, but I bet one of them does what you want.

mathowie: The demo screenshots show a lot of overlays of what you're viewing through the camera kind of thing, which is a little weird, but...

jessamyn: Yeah.

mathowie: A little too much detail. But yeah, this is cool.

jessamyn: As opposed to the map.

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: The map aspect.

mathowie: I think that's all I had for favorites on Projects.

cortex: I had one other. There's a--

jessamyn: Yeah. I enjoyed Projects, but it wasn't super hopping. Shall we even talk about Jobs? Is anything going on in Jobs?

mathowie: (chuckles)

cortex: I did have one more Project, actually.

jessamyn: Oh, great!

cortex: stavrosthewonderchicken posted...

jessamyn: Oh, yeah, I saw that! We should have mentioned that. Right.

cortex: ...a site he's been... basically curating links

to stuff related to Korea and life in Korea, since he lives in South Korea. And yeah, so this site that he has been hacking at lately. And it's neat! It's just a nice collection of different people's photos and experience and anecdotes and stuff. So I thought it was cool.

jessamyn: And he's a wonderful designer. I mean, I really feel like the web stuff that he does all looks nice. Like, every time he comes out with a new thing, it just looks handsome.

cortex: Yep. He's got an eye.

jessamyn: He's got an eye and an ability to actually bring stuff to actual fruition, so yeah. I enjoyed that.

cortex: At least one eye and one hand, we know for sure he has those, probably.

jessamyn: (laughs)

mathowie: (laughs)

jessamyn: I don't know if I've ever seen a picture of stav. Is that possible?

mathowie: I don't think I ever have.

cortex: I think I have seen a picture of him, probably via MeFight Club somehow. But I'm not...

jessamyn: Yeah, yeah.

mathowie: Wow, those are pretty.

cortex: I wouldn't swear on it.

mathowie: That is a pretty site.

jessamyn: So the only thing I have to mention about Jobs is I'm really hoping that unannihilated got his laptop button fixed.

cortex: (laughs) Seriously.

mathowie: (laughs)

jessamyn: I enjoyed that adorable Job.

mathowie: (chuckles)

jessamyn: And I hope they found a person.

mathowie: There are a lot of web jobs available if you're interested in jobs, it looks like.

jessamyn: If you like doing web stuff.

mathowie: Web stuff!

cortex: And if you're one of the three people who actually knows their way around R, you could go teach someone else it.

jessamyn: I don't even know what R is! What is R?

cortex: It's a math-oriented programming language.

jessamyn: Of course it is.

mathowie: Pops and buzzes.

cortex: I think it's amazing if specifically what you do is stats, but I don't, and so I've never bothered. I had a bad experience with another weird idiosyncratic language called Prolog when I was in college.

jessamyn: No, no, no! Shut up! I know Prolog!

cortex: Yeah?

jessamyn: Really? Did you learn it in school?

cortex: Yeah! I had to learn it for...

jessamyn: I learned it in school. Piece of shit programming language. The worst!

cortex: It's so weird! Well, I mean, it's designed to do a very specific thing, and if what you're actually specifically doing is constraint satisfaction problems, it's the best thing in the world! But I...

jessamyn: It was good for query and recall stuff for library stuff. That's how we were learning it.

cortex: Yeah.

jessamyn: In library school. Like, you throw a thing through a filter and you get what you get on the other side and you can apply some things to it and show it to someone.

cortex: Yeah. For very specific... yeah, and I'd say query-based stuff, where you're really trying to do very specific sorts of sorting

handling of data it's probably great. But it was rarely when I was doing it I--

jessamyn: I don't even think so. I think it's supposed to teach monkeys to program.

mathowie: (chuckles)

cortex: Well, and the thing with it for me is like, I don't mean to knock it too hard, because I'm sure it's fine for whatever it is, but it was especially frustrating for me because I missed the first day of that class, where the professor--

jessamyn: Oh, no! (laughs)

cortex: And it was a seven-week class, and we were covering three different languages, as... because it wasn't really about any of the languages, it was just they were three different ways of looking at things for programming paradigms or something like that. And I missed the first day of class, because I got the timing of

two lectures wrong, and so--

jessamyn: No one cares why you missed it, Josh. (laughs)

cortex: But the point is, he went over Prolog--

jessamyn: But! (laughs)

cortex: --for that first half-hour to hour of that class.

jessamyn: Fuuuu.

cortex: And never returned to any discussion of the language or language resources, just every--

jessamyn: And this is before Wikipedia, right?

cortex: Yeah. So every class after that was just plowing ahead and I was so fucking lost.

jessamyn: Awww.

cortex: Like, I passed that class on the strength of managing to do A work on the other two language segments we did.

jessamyn: We had a whole class on Prolog. I can still remember I wrote a little program that you would type in a country and it would show you the flag of that country, so I got to learn a lot of the stupid graphics...

cortex: (laughs)

jessamyn: Aspects. And I only put in the countries that you could draw, so sorry Brazil!

mathowie: (chuckles)

jessamyn: Sorry Saudi Arabia. How about a nice Swedish flag?

mathowie: (chuckles)

jessamyn: How about a nice Japanese flag?

mathowie: Why don't we move on--

jessamyn: But wait. Why were you starting to talk about Prolog?

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: Did it have to do with R?

cortex: Because we were talking about R.

mathowie: Oh, right.

cortex: Just because they're both idiosyncratic specific academic languages.

jessamyn: I'm kind of pleased to hear that Prolog is really sort of a language. I thought it was just some joke thing that we had to learn--

cortex: (laughs)

jessamyn: --because we weren't smart enough to learn real programming.

cortex: It's not technically a practical joke.

jessamyn: (laughs) Just how it manifests itself.

cortex: It's like if all you had ever experienced was realist art and then you saw a Mondrian for the first time hanging in the museum, I think that's kind of like what it's like to encounter

Prolog if you're not specifically in the demographic of people who would actually have any use for Prolog.

jessamyn: Mondegreen?

cortex: It's like this is... huh? Mondrian?

jessamyn: What? Oh, Mondrian!

cortex: Yeah.

jessamyn: I thought this was mondegreen and I had to admit that I forgot what that meant.

cortex: No, no. (laughs) Nope.

mathowie: Let's move on to Me-ta-fil-ter.

jessamyn: Great!

mathowie: First thing I liked at the end of last month was Every Noise At Once. Did you guys catch this?

jessamyn: I just skipped right by something called Every Noise At Once.

cortex: (laughs)

mathowie: No, it's kinda cool, because it's trying to show a thousand genres of music, and then it shows you further delves into that.

jessamyn: This is Jordan, the mathematician. Josh, this guy is your new best friend.

cortex: (laughs)

mathowie: Yeah, and then I'll show you--

jessamyn: Whenever you go to Wisconsin, you need to look this guy up. He is amazing.

mathowie: Hundreds of examples of each person doing that genre, and then it links to rdio so you can listen to samples

and yeah, it's pretty cool.

jessamyn: Mexican sun.

mathowie: And if you're wondering what Italian disco or glitch hop is, you can figure it out.

jessamyn: I know what glitch hop is.

mathowie: (laughs)

jessamyn: (laughs) Don't you patronize me!

mathowie: I'm not judging! Yes.

jessamyn: So wait, I click on oratory, but then I don't... oh, I then have to click on these tiny triangles?

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: And let's see, Spiro Agnew is related to... dammit, now I'm listening to Spiro Agnew!

mathowie: It's kinda cool.

jessamyn: Matt!

cortex: Hey, I found boogaloo!

jessamyn: (laughs)

cortex: But where's the electric one?

jessamyn: Thomas Edison... Ossie Davis... are these all men?

mathowie: (laughs) No, but mostly.

jessamyn: Seriously, no. Amelia Earhart is a lady. Judi Bari...

mathowie: What? How'd you get there from Music? Amelia Earhart--

jessamyn: I clicked 'oratory'!

mathowie: Ohh, oh, these are like--

jessamyn: Angela Davis, Eleanor Roosevelt. And now I'm looking at a list of seventy-five dudes.

mathowie: Hm.

jessamyn: And six ladies.

cortex: Which is ironic, because pop culture has taught us that women talk more than men, so it's, you know.

mathowie: Ahh.

jessamyn: I'm going to pretend you did not say that.

mathowie: (chuckles)

cortex: I was mocking it. It's like when I bring up--

jessamyn: Just tell me it's an ironic joke.

cortex: It is. It's like Eskimos' words for snow thing.

jessamyn: It's like Matt on Twitter!

mathowie: Ironic jokes.

cortex: (laughing) No, it's not like Matt on Twitter!

mathowie: Is that all I do? I think I do do that a lot. Ironic jokes.

jessamyn: You do it a lot, Matt.

cortex: I think it was the c-word that was the real one.

mathowie: Oh geez, yeah.

jessamyn: That's when I unfollowed him!

cortex: [??] (laughs)

mathowie: Aww.

jessamyn: Life's too short.

cortex: (laughs) I was gonna say, this is totally jumping back, but one second thought is, we were talking about Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs, and it occurs to me that a good way to frame the concept of 'first-world problems' is that they're all in the top chunk of the pyramid--

mathowie: Oh! First-pyramid problems.

cortex: Like, first-world problems are self-actualization problems. It's like, oh man.

jessamyn: Oh, I see what you're saying!

cortex: Or roughly speaking, anyway.

jessamyn: That's an interesting way of looking at it. That nobody's going hungry, they're just... yeah.

cortex: Yeah.

mathowie: I always thought about the Hierarchy of Needs as when I'm having an argument about something really dumb and minuscule, then I go, "Well, you know, in the greater scheme of things, we're having an argument definitely in the upper tier of that."

jessamyn: Right, about what's the best toothbrush.

mathowie: Right. We're not worried about making rent.

cortex: Yeah.

mathowie: Like, we're having a discussion of who's pushing the pillow on the couch further to the edge or something so minor.

jessamyn: It drives me crazy, that pillow-pushing!

mathowie and cortex: (laughs)

mathowie: "It's my pillow! Stop moving it!"

jessamyn: (laughs)

mathowie: Any good Metafilter posts?

cortex: Oh yeah.

jessamyn: This one was terrific, now I'm all stuck!

mathowie: Yeah, it's kind of a...

jessamyn: It's also a beautiful-looking website, which is really good.

mathowie: Yeah. It's a cool visualization.

jessamyn: My favorite one, which was one of the "when Metafilter works the way I really want it to work", like, I think a lot of us... you know, Metafilter's sometimes exactly how we want and a lot of times it's not exactly how we want, but hopefully it's how somebody else wants it?

But this was like, I was on Facebook, and somebody posted some joke to some funny thing, and I was like, "Oh my God, this is funny, I need to send it to all my friends!" and I sent it to a couple of my friends, and then I was like, "Oh, I bet Metafilter's talking about this!" And they totally were, and I had a delightful brief thread--

mathowie: Ohh.

jessamyn: Called "'Screw cardinals.': A judgmental survey of America's state birds, with suggestions for improvements." And it's just this dumb funny article on Slate

who, like, I don't trust Slate anymore! I think Slate are a bunch of click-baiters most of the time. But oh my God, this was basically a guy who goes and looks at what the official bird is for every state, realizes that many of the states have the same damn birds--

mathowie: (chuckles)

jessamyn: And a lot of them don't even have their iconic graphic bird as their state bird, you know?

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: And so he makes suggestions. And it's just this funny... I mean, it's Honey Badger level of funny to me.

Because I am interested in birds. And birding. Like, why is the California Quail the official state bird of California instead of the California! Condor!?

mathowie: (chuckles)

jessamyn: Which is completely the coolest bird there is, and then I scrolled all the way down, of course, and Vermont is basically like, "Hermit thrush. Yep. Thanks for restoring sanity, Vermont." So I liked it. But the whole thread is just funny, because it's Metafilter bird nerds chiming in and making jokes.

cortex: I totally missed this.

mathowie: It is so...

cortex: "Florida: Official State Bird: northern mockingbird. I'm finishing this post the next day, because I had to go buy a new computer after I threw my last one out the window"--

mathowie and jessamyn: (laugh)

cortex: "--when I read the Florida State Bird was the northern mockingbird."

mathowie: Northern anything.

cortex: "I cannot think of a more pathetic choice for one of the most bird-rich states in the nation. What's their state beverage, a half-glass of warm tap water?"

jessamyn and mathowie: (laugh)

mathowie: That was the greatest Slate article, probably of the year, and I don't even think the Slate editors know why or can replicate it, but

getting someone who's very funny and very knowledgeable about something to do something that's--

jessamyn: Well, that's the thing, because the guy knows his birds!

mathowie: It's excellent. Yeah!

jessamyn: He's not making fun of birders, he is a birder.

mathowie: It's true. Yeah. And it's true from end to end, like, all the states--

jessamyn: "Screw you, Taxachusetts. Maine wins" the black-capped chickadee. Heeheehee!

mathowie: (chuckles)

jessamyn: But it just brought joy into my life, and then it was joyous to get to share it with Metafilter people who also thought it was great.

It was just a fun dumb thread.

mathowie: And then there was a little argument about Oregon's should be the... what was it, the woodpecker that's in my backyard, and that's... yes.

jessamyn: I love those woodpeckers! I think I told people that you had those woodpeckers.

mathowie: Yeah, I saw a zillion links to an old Flickr photo or something, and I was like, where is this coming from? It's coming from Metafilter?! and then, yeah, it was the comment going, It's the unofficial bird of mathowie's backyard!

cortex: (laughs)

mathowie: It was good.

jessamyn: Right. What are those things called, acorn woodpeckers?

mathowie: Acorn woodpeckers, yeah. They're beautiful.

jessamyn: Yeah! I loved those pictures, or the little video that you took, because I've never seen one of those, so I think about them.

mathowie: I see them daily!

jessamyn: Lucky!

mathowie: Josh?

cortex: I had a bunch of, oddly enough, sci-fi themed things.

mathowie: Oh. That's weird.

cortex: Although some of them only tangentially--

jessamyn: Josh, I didn't know what Babylon 5 was and we lost at bar trivia on Thursday.

mathowie: Aww.

cortex: Yeah, that's a bummer. What was the question, do you remember?

jessamyn: It was like, "What universe is inhabited by," and then humans and six things I've never heard of.

cortex: Like Vorlons and Minbari and, yeah, Shadows...

jessamyn: Yeah!

mathowie: (chuckles)

jessamyn: I didn't know what [??] was, I did know what a Cylon was...

cortex: See, that's Star Trek.

jessamyn: I know, I know, I know! But it was the sci-fi round and everyone was like, "Oh, Jessamyn, you got this,"--

mathowie: Ohhh.

jessamyn: And I was like, "What? What?"

cortex: (chuckles) 'You're a nerd, right?"

jessamyn: I know!

mathowie: Is Babylon like '95 to '99 or something?

jessamyn: Those were my offline years.

cortex: Somewhere... you know, it started in '93, because there was just a post about the 20th anniversary the other day.

mathowie: Oh, okay.

jessamyn: See, I was out of the country! I didn't have Babylon 5!

mathowie: That was college! Yeah.

cortex: It just finished up just about in time for me to go off to college, and a friend of mine made us all watch it on VHS, and we were all, "Oh, this is terrible! Let's watch another one." [??]

mathowie: (chuckles)

jessamyn: I haven't watched sci-fi TV until a month ago, or a decade ago. Yeah. But I'm sorry, get back to what your post was.

cortex: It's the, you'll have to catch up. Well, I was going to mention Riker sitting down, which was exploded on the Internet

a few weeks ago. Someone put together a little supercut of Jonathan Frakes sitting down in various episodes of Next Generation.

mathowie: (chuckles) And once you--

jessamyn: Can you explain?

mathowie: Once you see it, yeah.

cortex: Where he just brings a leg over the top of the back of the chair as he sits down, and then backwards.

mathowie: Once you see it, you can never unsee it. All you see is him doing it forever.

cortex: Yeah.

jessamyn: Oh, that's a weird thing that he does?

mathowie: Yeah.

cortex: Yeah. Well, and I don't know that he did it super consistently, but he's a tall guy, there's not necessarily a lot of room on set, he had back problems, and I think Wil Wheaton, late in the thread someone points out that Wil Wheaton went on Reddit and basically said

"Yeah, well, Jon had back problems."

mathowie: He had a [??] theory? Yeah.

cortex: And so it was just easier to just do that than to try and... especially, you gotta remember, it's not just like, "Can you sit down in this chair?", it's "Can you sit down in this chair for as many takes as we need to do right now?" So it's like, you can see [??].

jessamyn: Right. And keep your lines, and yeah.

cortex: So there was that Star Trek post, but then there was also the post about Matt Yglesias being totally wrong about which Star Trek is best on Slate.

mathowie: (laughs)

jessamyn: Skipped this one entirely.

cortex: Which, ha-ha, that'll show them for closing that, we'll talk about it for 700 comments. Suck on that, Slate. But yeah, it was just--

jessamyn: Was there any conclusion in the thread?

cortex: No. Nobody agrees on anything, so.

jessamyn: Like, does it even shake out among party lines in any way?

cortex: There's a lot of different angles, so there's sort of, you could say there's rough groups according to who thinks which one is the best, you know, there's the DS9-ers and the Original Series-ers and the Next Generation-ers,

and a couple touched individuals who think Voyager's the best.

jessamyn: Really, do most people... but see, that's what I mean. Do most people not think Voyager is best?

cortex: Most people did not think Voyager is the best.

jessamyn: Voyager's the one with the big chin guy?

cortex: Is there a big chin guy in Voyager?

jessamyn: Oh, let me solve this problem for myself.

cortex and mathowie: (laugh)

cortex: Like an alien big chin, or just a human with a big chin.

jessamyn: No, like the captain is just some guy with a big chin.

cortex: No, Voyager was Kathryn Janeway.

mathowie: It was some woman.

cortex: Katherine Mulgrew.

jessamyn: Oh, God, yeah. Okay. I know what you're talking about.

cortex: Yeah. Anyway, it's a fun thread because there's not any consensus, but people do a good job of--

jessamyn: But people agree to disagree, and nobody cares.

mathowie: (chuckles)

cortex: Well, and they dig into why. That's kind of why I enjoyed it. Because it could be a stupid, "No, you're wrong! Well, Vikings!" thing.

jessamyn: (laughs)

cortex: But instead people really dug into why they like what they like and whatnot, and I think that may be the thread where I ended up writing some

slashfic about Jean-Luc Picard as Locutus of Borg--

jessamyn: Can't know that about you. Just keep talking.

cortex: --having a romantic interlude with Mot the Barber, a bald blue-haired recurring character from Next Generation--

jessamyn: Keep walking.

cortex: I don't even know what happened, I was kind in a fugue state, but.

jessamyn: (laughs)

cortex: Anyway, it's a fun thread. It's full of people geeking out about Star Trek. So those are my two Star Trek threads.

jessamyn: Hey, did you guys see the Star Trek movie?

mathowie: Not yet.

cortex: I haven't yet. There's also some discussion of that in there, I think, eventually, because I think that came out during the...

jessamyn: Okay, I have seen the Star Trek movie. And then I spoiled it by accident on Twitter--

cortex: Oh, man.

jessamyn: Which was horrible, because I don't even think I could do that, but apparently I could. But I thought it was good, so I was just wondering if you thought it was good. So let me know when you've seen it if you thought it was good.

cortex: I will do.

mathowie: I've heard it's fanfic for current lovers of Star Trek or something, and outsiders won't be super into it.

jessamyn: There's a lot of, in scenes, callback references to eight million other Star Trek things that I felt like I got maybe 30% of? But the acting's good, and it didn't have any long,

fifteen-minute car-chase-equivalent scenes. It was punchy. Plus, I saw it in the movie theater with every kid from town, and that's the way to see the Star Trek movie.

mathowie: Yeah.

cortex: Probably helps, yeah.

mathowie: I saw Fast & Furious the other day. That doesn't make any sense at home!

cortex and jessamyn: (laugh)

mathowie: (laughing) They shouldn't even sell it on DVD. Like, you have to go to a giant arena with a hundred other people to really enjoy the ridiculousness of that.

jessamyn: I saw Iron Man 3 instead of going to the drive-in to see Fast & Furious, and that may not have been the right decision.

mathowie: Eh, it was pretty... it was kind of funny. It was alright.

jessamyn: Well, I mean, it's not supposed to be humor, though, right?

cortex: We stayed home and watched all the newer Arrested Development.

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: Wait, what, what, what?

cortex: We just stayed home and watched all of the new Arrested Development.

mathowie: Ah.

jessamyn: Oh, I haven't seen it yet! Thoughts?

cortex: You should see it! Well, I enjoyed it.

jessamyn: I mean, I'm familiar with the narrative structure they set up, at least, I read about it. Oh, before this podcast is over,

can you guys tell me about the Red Wedding? But not now.

cortex: Yeah, sure.

mathowie: Oh, I have no idea.

cortex: Before the podcast is over, or before the phone call is over? Because we probably shouldn't actually spoil it--

jessamyn: Before the phone call is over. Don't mention it on the podcast.

mathowie: (laughs)

cortex: (laughs) Sweet.

jessamyn: But I can't make any sense out of the damn Metafilter thread and I just need to know what happens. So at the end, after we're done podcasting.

cortex: Yeah, I can give you the short version.

mathowie: Sure.

jessamyn: I don't mind spoilers at all.

mathowie: Let's get back to Metafilter. My favorite post

of the month was Precise yet Arbitrary Places. This guy gets a portable GPS unit and then dreams--

jessamyn: Badass! I didn't see this.

mathowie: Yeah. About dreaming about going across the 40th parallel and then at every major degree intersection taking a photo.

cortex: (laughs)

mathowie: And at first... it doesn't sound that--oh, yeah, it took 21 years after the time he thought of it as a kid to finish it, he's a pro photographer, I think. And he has the coolest site. These places, when you

look at a map, they are so freaking remote! They are in the middle of... everything across northern Nevada is just nothing. I mean, it's just... I can't imagine how far he trekked off main roads or gravel roads just to get to these places. And then he's in the middle of nowhere and he oddly makes, you know, he's supposed to stand at a point and take a photo in north-south-east-west directions, and they're actually, I think they're large-format photos, they're actually beautiful,
even though there's no subject matter except grass or a tree.

jessamyn: But the randomness is the subject in some ways, right?

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: Like, that reminds me of one of my favorite early nerd web projects, the Degree Confluence Project?

mathowie: Oh, yeah!

jessamyn: Which is just finding all the places on the surface of the planet where the latitude and longitude are integers.

mathowie: Yeah. And that was the crowd is kind of bagging those places, like it's the first person to get to that

eastern corner.

jessamyn: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

mathowie: Yeah. That was kinda cool.

jessamyn: Yeah. And I've been to all the ones in Vermont--well, because for a lot of people who like exploring, but like to have structure to it, it's a neat way to do it. And, I mean, for this guy, obviously, he's a photographer and so it gave him a project, sort of.

mathowie: Yeah. And it sounds simple, and then... I was just looking at the map, there's a cool map of every point, and it's like, wow, some of these are so remote. I don't even know how far,

how many hours it would take to get to those places. And he had a Kickstarter that was funding the ending of the project, and I guess he just completed it. So it was pretty cool.

cortex: There was a post just the other day, basically an excerpt of a novel, and I was mentioning this to Jessamyn somehow in passing, I think on IM when we were switching off shifts. But a novel called, I think,

"The More You Ignore Me, The Closer I Get" is the title of it.

jessamyn: This was another one of those that's all blah blah ginger to me and I had no idea what was going on at all.

cortex: It's a guy, it's a novel--or at least this excerpt is, and maybe this is the entire novel is just an extended version of this, but it's written as basically this bloviating comment that just never ends on some message board, specifically a message board

for about a guy who was banned from another website for the organization of some couple's wedding. And so it's written in the style of this comment, it's essentially an epistolatory novel, except for instead of writing letters--

jessamyn: That's right, because you were then explaining to me what 'epistolatory' meant.

cortex: Yeah. Instead of being a collection of letters or whatever, it's, yeah.

jessamyn: I remember the whole conversation now. Except what 'epistolatory' means.

cortex: And it's amazing, because it's like, some people are talking about how it put them on edge, and that's exactly how I felt. My comment in the thread, after reading through it, was like, "This is basically what the Voight-Kampff would be like if it was designed to detect moderators," because I was immediately twitching and saying, "What do you mean, I'm not helping the turtle? What the fuck?"

jessamyn: (laughs) Right, right, right.

cortex: So it's a, yeah.

jessamyn: Yeah, and the whole thing looked like... that's so funny! Because I wound up not engaging with it at all because it looked like work.

mathowie: Yeah.

cortex: Well, that's the thing, it's like, I kinda, I didn't finish reading the entire, I read a bunch of it and then I was like, you know what,

this is actually bothering me--

jessamyn: (laughs)

cortex: I mean, I was really enjoying, because the guy has got a very good sense of, it's constructed very nicely to riff off the specific sort of nincompoopness that you encounter sometimes in annoying Internet people. But it was doing too good of a job, it was like, yeah, I don't wanna--

jessamyn: I hear ya. I hear ya.

cortex: So yeah. That's my glowing review of his prose, I guess. (laughing) Is that he really bothered me, so good job.

mathowie: It made you twich.

cortex: Yep.

mathowie: Awesome.

jessamyn: I also liked--now I gotta find... Well, there was a whole bunch of different kinds of threads, one that doesn't really need a lot of talking, but it was a nice place to be, was getting to hang out on Metafilter after Flickr did its thing?

cortex: Oh, yeah!

jessamyn: Because obviously the Flickr forums were horrible, and I wanted to actually be able to talk to some people about what they thought about all the changes, and was it just me or did it seem like there was parts that were

broken? And it's the kind of thing you don't want to e-mail one person, but it was nice to have a bunch of people to talk to about, most of whom... I mean, who, while may be pissed, are at least reasonable about, "Yeah, this was weird!" And whatever. So I enjoyed that, but I didn't have anything much to say about that.
I don't know if you would call this thread enjoying or not, but I loved this website. It's called

mathowie: Oh, yeah. (chuckles)

jessamyn: And it's basically a list of movies that have animals in them, and it lets you know if the animal is fine, if the animal is hurt but ultimately okay, or if they kill the animal.

cortex: (chuckles) Oh, that's amazing.

jessamyn: And it's one of those things that if you're not a person who cares about this, it's just a website you can never visit and never care. But ever since I saw Flatliners, which uses a limpy hurt dog for narrative effect,

I'm really touchy about watching movies that have a pet, especially, as a character, who then kill it or hurt it or torture it or whatever, and I appreciate (laughing) the resource that is And I enjoyed talking about it with Metafilter people.

mathowie: (airy whistle)

jessamyn: And it's just the most boring website there is, but it, you know, does what it says on

the tin. Via elizardbits's tumblr, which I am told is very popular. I'm afraid to go there, because I might not come back, but this is a good website.

cortex: I thought so.

mathowie: On the Yahoo!/Flickr front, I loved the Arrested Development thread as a bunch of smart people talking about why it was good or why it was bad. And if you look at popular critics, I guess, TV critics mostly panned the new series,

and most people think it's genius in Metafilter. If you go in that thread, it's 346 comments. The last 200 are dissecting what makes it genius, basically.

jessamyn: Well, because they went out on a limb, right?

mathowie: Right.

jessamyn: Like, without giving anything away, my understanding is there's a whole bunch of episodes that show a similar set of events from different characters' perspectives.

mathowie and cortex: Yeah.

mathowie: Pretty much every episode. And again, some people just... I mean, I started to get like, "Augh, aren't we going to move forward with the story? Do we have to rehash this same two-day period?"

And it gets a little bit long in the tooth, but the wonder of--

cortex: But there's so many great little reveals, like the--

mathowie: Yeah.

cortex: How many different things you see at the time, and I feel like that's part of the thing. It's like, you go in the first couple episodes, there's a lot of little notes that are just like, okay, well, whatever, I guess that's what that character said there, okay, I guess that was a thing that happened, I don't really get why they bothered to edit in that shot, et cetera.

mathowie: Right, right.

cortex: And then by the end you're like ho-ly shit! Every single--!

jessamyn: That's the turning point of the thing!

cortex: Yes. Every single moment.

mathowie: Yeah, and if you read the thread, people go so deep on so many pause--but I thought, when I was watching the first couple episodes, I was thinking, oh, there's a lot of pause button jokes here, like old Simpsons.

jessamyn: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

mathowie: Like, if you hit 'pause', you can see four things in the background that are funny for three reasons, and I'm not even keeping up with it, there's so much information, and people are obsessively going frame by frame through the whole thing, and there's a couple amazing comment writeups where people are diving into all the themes and all the

recurring jokes and so much stuff I missed on the first... And I got a whole new appreciation for how much insane thought went into the writers when they link up all the jokes. And it's just a great, there's just a lot of great comments about what people think is going on in the series. Because it's a comedy, right? And nothing really happens, and it's kind of got a confusing ending. I don't know. It doesn't really happen.

jessamyn: Well, people are jerks to each other!

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: So you've gotta kind of... I mean, it's a little bit like Community in that way, that there's a lot of weird snarkiness that you've gotta be able to enjoy comedically in order to be able to appreciate, I think.

cortex: Yeah.

mathowie: Yeah, and in the end people are like, "Well, maybe Job is actually the most thoughtful person out of the [??]."

jessamyn: (laughs)

mathowie: And you get it pummeled in your head if you read that thread that the term 'arrested development' has ten meanings and it refers to every character for various reasons, and it's actually the most brilliant thing in the world.

jessamyn: Nice.


mathowie: That just nobody grows up. I mean, really, nobody, nothing happens, nobody grows up. No one gets better.

jessamyn: No one learns anything.

mathowie: Yeah. They're all self-centered jerks, and the whole thing is, yeah, it's crazy!

jessamyn: And yet for some reason, it's good television. At least, I thought. So I didn't watch it when it was out, but I enjoy it, and I usually don't like the "everybody's a jerk to each other" shows.

mathowie: Yeah. Yeah. I don't even watch It's Sunny in Philadelphia, never liked--

jessamyn: Oh god, I can't stand that show.

mathowie: I never really liked the Larry David one, what was that?

jessamyn: Ohh, Larry David [??].

cortex and mathowie: Curb Your Enthusiasm.

mathowie: Yeah, like I watch these--

jessamyn: I realize he's a genius. I just can't watch that show.

mathowie: Yeah. Right. I watch these things and I go--

cortex: I've never really tried watching it, because I think Angela would just feel the same way. She'd just be like aughhh, this is just, this guy's hanging around being a miserable asshole with his miserable asshole friends.

mathowie: Like these people are--! Yeah.

cortex: I'm like, yeah, but it's, oh my god!

mathowie: These people are funny, but I don't identify, I don't like any of them, so why am I wasting my time watching them?

cortex: Well, and it took us two starts to get into Arrested Development, because we watched the first, I don't know, two or three episodes of the first season, and Angela's like, ehhh! It's like, everybody's unhappy.

mathowie: (laughs)

cortex: She was definitely feeling that this is a weirdly fucking cynical universe we're stepping into here, whereas I was like "oh my god!" But then the second time it ended up clicking and being funny enough to work.

mathowie: I wandered accidentally, I downloaded the wrong file from Usenet, and it turned out I got the Charlie Brown episode? I think it's like season

2, maybe fourth or fifth one, where everyone walks around with the Charlie Brown theme playing, because they all get disappointed.

cortex: (stifled laughter)

mathowie: And I was like, that was funny?

jessamyn: (laughs)

mathowie: But clearly I'm missing like ten storylines, and I went back to the start and loved it. So I lucked out. Accidental good stories.

jessamyn: That's right up there on the Maslow's need hierarchy, right, is complaining about Flickr's redesign or Arrested Development's extra season.

mathowie: (laughs) Character arc.

jessamyn: Not saying there's not a real problem, I'm just, this is helping me really frame a lot of my dissatisfactions.

mathowie: Pretty high up on the pyramid.

jessamyn: Right. Pretty high up on the pyramid there.

mathowie: Oh man, there's so many good... there were a couple good music posts that didn't get a lot of love. Did you see this guy, what was his name, DJ Flula? It's a British guy who records with a sampler and a sequencer, kinda like Reggie Watts,

where he makes everything, he makes the beats, he makes sounds, he records these loops, and he does it all in a car with ten GoPros going.

jessamyn: (laughs) That's gotta be cool.

mathowie: Yeah. Sometimes he's driving. He's often, he's in a crowded parking lot, and people are walking by, and he's sitting there doing a cover of Gangnam Style or s--it's like...

jessamyn: The only use of the 'epicmoustache' tag on Metafilter.

mathowie and cortex: (laugh)

mathowie: They're consistently enjoyable goofy little three minutes, like, yo! This is DJ Flula, and (beatboxes)

jessamyn: I'll have to check this out!

mathowie: Yep.

jessamyn: Thank you, radwolf76!

mathowie: They're pretty cool.

cortex: That's pretty keen.

jessamyn: Ooh, Thrift Shop!

mathowie: Yeah, he does Thrift Shop.

jessamyn: Okay, shut up all y'all, I'm just gonna watch this and talk amongst yourselves.

cortex: (laughs) I'll mention some other Star Wars stuff.

mathowie: One last--

jessamyn: (sings) Boop! Boop-boop boop, boop-boop-boop boop-boop!

mathowie: Another good music one was the Chance the Rapper post that came out, I think, on Friday. This is a great story, the kid who gets suspended from school for two weeks, for ten days,

and his mom takes everything away from him, and all he has is his computer, and he does this epic album in ten days, and he tweets about it while he does it, and it's really great, and he has a new album, or whatever you call it, mix tape, like another hour of... this is six to eight or nine different songs that go for an hour total with complex beats, and he's got a really weird style of, his voice is a little weird and his rhymes are crazy and
it's just so cool. It's just a wacky life gives you lemons kind of moment. Like, he sat at home for ten days and he made an entire album and it's a critical success and now he's making another one and he's still a teenager and it's kind of awesome.

cortex: That's sweet.

mathowie: Yeah. I would highly recommend just the free mixtapes you can download.

jessamyn: Thanks Potomac Avenue!

cortex: There was that post a couple weeks ago about Star Wars Kid.

mathowie: Oh, yeah!

jessamyn: Oh, yeah!

cortex: Talking about life from ten years after.

jessamyn: I think we pulled that out for the Best Of blog, right?

cortex: I think we might have. Or specifically--

jessamyn: I think Matt did.

mathowie: Yeah, I did.

cortex: --a comment in there, yeah.

mathowie: Something in there. Yeah, that was cool because Andy Baio kind of broke the whole story and then got to, same way I sort of... like, it's enjoyable at first, and I identify with the kid, and then you show it to the world and the world's like, "Haha, fat kid," and you're like, "Wait, what? Come on!"

jessamyn: Right.

mathowie: And everyone kinda laughed at him, and it was a really weird reaction, and he hated it,

he changed schools, and the weird part is, knowing Andy, is he would find mentions of Ghyslain basically once a year for ten years. I've known what that kid is up to. And Andy's always like, "I can't say anything on my blog, but he just graduated college! I'm really happy for him. And he just made the Dean's List!"

cortex: (laughs)

mathowie: Andy must have had a Google News alert.

jessamyn: Right. Like, he's doing great.

mathowie: Yeah. Andy always watched him from afar, going like, I'm so sorry what I did to you, kid. Also, it's

kinda cool to see this guy grow up. And he kept it on the down-low so people wouldn't be like, "Haha, fat kid!" to him as an adult. So it was nice to see the kid break the silence and do an interview.

jessamyn: Be like, "That was me and now I'm an adult," and yeah.

mathowie: Yeah. And Andy's been showing me links for so many years, it's like, he was on some Dean's List, and then he was, I think he was a civil engineer, and then when he got his first job he's listed on someone's staff page, and Andy found that.

It was really funny. It's kinda like the Kaycee Nicole story. I sort of followed all the people around that for four or five years, just because it was so weird.

jessamyn: Right, right, right.

mathowie: And yeah. So that was cool. And I think the consensus from the thread was a lot of, yeah, it's such a bummer the way the world just mocked him when we could all identify with him instead.

cortex: Yep.

jessamyn: Right. And when lots of people identified with him at the time, even. There was a lot of, wow, there but for the grace of God kind of situations.

mathowie: Yep. "Thank God there wasn't a tape going--"

cortex: (laughs) Exactly.

jessamyn: "A video of me doing those dumb things that I did."

cortex: Like, the thing that separates you from that is not somehow being a less ridiculous human being, it's just that no one found a videotape and uploaded it.

jessamyn: Noo. It's being less photographed.

cortex: Yes.

jessamyn: Right.

mathowie: And it was ridiculous to see those references back in Arrested Development, like the consolation of the George Michael doing Star Wars Kid clips.

cortex: (laughs)

mathowie: Oh, god.

cortex: Well, my--

jessamyn: Ahh. Oh, what?

cortex: I was going to say, I had one other space pop culture thing, but why don't you go first?

jessamyn: I had one other also, which was just kind of summing together, there was a bunch of terrible hurricanes that hit Oklahoma, as you know. There was a MetaTalk thread, there was a Metafilter thread, and then one of the stormwatchers, the storm chasers, died this week, and it was just this terrible thing, and smoothvirus made a post about it, and I was really nervous because euhh...

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: It's somebody dying doing something that's risky. What I hadn't really understood--and I put this on the Best Of, and I also mentioned it in the thread, which may have helped the thread go better or maybe I'm just full of myself, but I hadn't really understood the position that a lot of storm chasers have in the ecosystem of weather reporting and news reporting and scientists and all that sort of stuff, because I've only seen them on The Weather Channel, and it just seems like people driving around in their trucks getting in trouble. And there was a bunch of

people in the thread, Lyn Never and a whole bunch of other people, who talked about the jobs that a lot of them are doing, and how they're actually contributing to science and what we know about these storms, because they're able to take, or they decide to take those risks about how to do those things. So there was a lot of first-person schooling about what storm chasers are really doing, and I learned a lot from the obit thread about the storm chaser guy.
And I'm glad that all the Metafilter people appeared to be safe, although not all untouched.

mathowie: That was really cool, yeah. I thought, when I saw the post go up as a moderator, I thought it'd be "LOL Darwin, hahaha."

jessamyn: Right, right, right, me too!

mathowie: And I did not know, I mean, all I've seen of storm chasing is the sensationalist crap of adrenaline junkies cheating death. But that's really cool that they help meteorologists, they help news reporting,

like, the good ones--

jessamyn: Right. And they help people survive in a lot of cases because they can give very, very specific information about exactly where the storms are when the weather radar isn't necessarily going to be able to do the same thing.

mathowie: How did the guy actually die? Was it like a truck got picked up and slammed--?

jessamyn: I don't know.

mathowie: Like, I didn't... what, how do you... just stuff blowing away. Hm. Weird.

jessamyn: So Josh, you said you had one more thing?

cortex: There was a post about--this was sort of making the rounds, but I saw it first on Metafilter--an old Howard Johnson's advertising comic--

jessamyn: (gasps)

mathowie: Oh, yeah.

cortex: About 2001: A Space Odyssey. And it's wonderful both for being this weird Howard Johnson showing a couple kids going and seeing a movie and there's some nice illustrations of some stills from scenes from the film, but there's also this absolutely absurd review, so it'll acknowledge what a mindfuck and ambiguous ending

the film had.

mathowie: (laughs)

cortex: Because there's like, well, it sure it neat how they solved... I can't remember the exact line, but it's amazing. It's just such a weird combination of cultural elements that really don't ultimately actually flow together well. Because the answer to how do you actually faithfully treat 2001 on a kids' menu at Howard Johnson's--

mathowie: (laughs)

cortex: Is you don't! You can't do that! So they just--

jessamyn: Is you skip parts of it and pretend they never existed.

cortex: Yeah. So they just, yeah.

mathowie: Why would a child be in the audience for that film? The whole thing is a crazy premise. (laughs)

cortex: Yep.

mathowie: It's so weird.

jessamyn: Man, this is already giving me fond memories of... we had a Howard Johnson's in the town over from my town, so that was the place you'd go for grilled cheese as a little, little kid.

mathowie: I like how they're going--oh, it's the premiere, okay, it's the premiere. I was like, why is everyone in a tux in these photographs?

jessamyn: (laughs)

mathowie: Oh, and the Howard Johnson tie-in is the goofy little lobby in the waiting area in space.

cortex: Yeah.

mathowie: Ahh. That was a product placement! The forerunner of product placement.

cortex: Hoy-boow!

jessamyn: Hauu!

cortex: Oh man, I have one other thing, too, that I guess didn't get under the wire for the last podcast, so I can mention it even though it's a month and change old now. Candy Box!

jessamyn: Oh, right! I saw people talking about this.

cortex: Yeah. Everybody was losing their minds collectively over it. I ended up never quite beating it, I couldn't figure out what was the deal with one of the last levels. But yeah, it's a

you go there, and if you don't know that there's more to it, you would probably give up on it in like two minutes.

jessamyn: I give up, it's just counting.

mathowie: Yeah.

cortex: Yeah, well, leave it in a tab and come back to it, is my first suggestion.

jessamyn: But--

cortex: Second suggestion is come back and read the thread.

mathowie: Stuff happens.

jessamyn: Euh...

cortex: It's an amazing weird little game, and it's fantastic, and the Metafilter thread--

jessamyn: This is a game?

mathowie: (chuckles)

cortex: It's a game. It's a game. It turns into a game. It blooms and blossoms over time.

mathowie: Oh, you can do other things!

cortex: Yes. Reading the Metafilter thread is one of those things

where you can't tell if it's everybody is seeing something that you somehow haven't figured out how to unlock yet, or if everyone is doing that collective storytelling thing where they pretend that it's not just a blank page.

jessamyn: See also why I didn't understand how Game of Thrones ended.

cortex: Exactly. So it's kinda, this is the Game of Thrones of ASCII art-based web art.

jessamyn: (laughs)

mathowie: Single-button games.

cortex: Exactly.

mathowie: Did you see the Tucson show mineral rooms post?

cortex: No.

jessamyn: What?

mathowie: It's so weird and great and it's just pictures of the best rocks from a mineral show.

jessamyn: Wow!

mathowie: They're amazing!

jessamyn: This is awesome!

mathowie: Right. I saw people reposting these on mlkshk being like, "This is a rock I'd like to screw," or something--

cortex: (laughs)

mathowie: Like, "I'm oddly drawn to its [??]."

cortex: You know, [??].

jessamyn: (laughs)

mathowie: Yeah. And it was just like, oh my god, they're so fucking... they're just a bunch of weird rocks, but they're so beautiful, and weird, and it's on this wacky Geocities-style page.

cortex: Yeah, this is very 1995.

jessamyn: Wow. Wow! Raspberry-colored fluorite, (pitch rising excitedly) with yellow fluorite, calcite, and sphalerite! This is pretty great.

mathowie: This would go, yeah, this post is like, I don't know why I love it as much as I do, but I sure do love it.

jessamyn: (gasps)

mathowie: It's so cool.

jessamyn: (gasps) I'm really enjoying this.

mathowie: It's just rock porn, I guess. It's just amazing.

jessamyn: (gasps) Raspberry-purple fluorite crystals on micro-quartz covered matrix!

mathowie: (laughs)

jessamyn: This is better than ice cream sundaes.

mathowie: Yeah. They're otherworldly.

jessamyn: Wow. Stacked golden fluorite with calcite and (pitch rises) chalcopyrite!

mathowie: (chuckles)

jessamyn: Yeah, this is pretty good. Thanks for pointing this out, Matt. I would have missed it.

mathowie: Yeah, it's just, it's really, really weird.

jessamyn: (laughs) Yes, yes.

mathowie: I guess the Tucson Gem and Mineral Show is a really big deal.

jessamyn: I believe it.

mathowie: Yeah, people go to it, and yeah, it's a big deal. It's so cool!

Alright, do you want to go to Ask Metafilter?

jessamyn: Sure!

cortex: What should we ask it?

mathowie: Hm, hm, hm.

jessamyn: We should talk about how the cat that was stuck on the 7th-story molding is okay now!

mathowie: Yay!

cortex: That's all we need to talk about. That'll...

jessamyn: Drama in real life! (pause) I think that's actually it.

cortex: Well, you should talk about it. Yeah, that was. (laughs)

mathowie: That's it.

cortex: It really takes the wind out of it when you know the ending, actually.

mathowie: Did they... oh, they posted a picture. Oh my god, that's high up!

cortex: (laughs)

jessamyn: I know, right?

mathowie: So how did they... aww.

cortex: This was definitely one of those threads where over a period--I don't know, what was it, like a few hours? Two, three hours before the cat came in, or...?

jessamyn: Yeah, I think so. Let's see, it was posted at 4...

cortex: Oh, no, actually, it was, that went...

jessamyn: It was a long time.

cortex: That went overnight?

mathowie: A half-hour...

jessamyn: No...

cortex: Yeah, the update was like, hey, she's back at 5:26 in the morning, when it was originally posted 1:00 the previous afternoon, so yeah.

mathowie: Oh, she turned around after an hour.

jessamyn: Yeah, because people were like, look, your cat's not gonna pitch to her death, you just have to chill out and leave a can of tuna in the window. But it's hard, right? Because the cat, maybe the cat can't turn around, maybe the cat's scared, maybe the cat's sick of your bullshit, it's impossible to tell!

mathowie: But wow, and those photo updates as the cat turned around? This is fascinating. (laughs) Someone should make a musical out of this.

jessamyn: Well, and she wound up popping into the neighbor's apartment?

mathowie: Oh, man.

cortex: (laughs)

mathowie: So it wasn't over until the following day. Oh my god.

cortex: And it was one of those threads where you just keep seeing references to things, maybe on the site, maybe on Twitter, and it's just like there's this constant cloud of third-party anxiety.

jessamyn: And she's getting--I think it's she, is it? destronomics? I don't even know. I think she, but I don't even know, is getting hassled by one of the other neighbors, who's like, "Call the fricking fire department!"

mathowie: Aww.

jessamyn: She's like, "I fucking did! They told me to do this!" So it was very exciting.

And much more exciting in hindsight because we know the cat's okay.

mathowie: Yayy.

jessamyn: I put it on the Best Of blog also.

mathowie: The other thing that was great for closure was this, "Is this a scam? What's the angle here?" question on the first of May.

jessamyn: Was that the Craiglist one?

mathowie: No! So get this one, and it's spikeleemajortom--

cortex: Oh god, yeah, this.

jessamyn: Oh, yeah!

mathowie: So there's about a hundred and twelve comments, and it took about eighty comments before we got closure. So it was like, okay, I work in a bike shop, I'm a bike mechanic, this guy keeps coming in and

buying a $5,000 bike, he takes it home for three or four days, and then he brings it back. And then--

jessamyn: And we have a casual return policy, so we just--

mathowie: Yeah. And I'm a mechanic, I can tell, the brakes have not been touched. If he went on one ride--

jessamyn: He is not riding this bike.

mathowie: Yeah. If he went on one ride, we would know. Nothing is happening to this bike. And the weird part is, he comes in four days later and buys it again, and this has happened twelve times! And they said, yeah, he's up to $25,000 of returns and

purchase-return, purchase-return, purchase-return, and people are like, oh, this has to be a, what do you call it, miles card scam for his credit card, and then those are ruled out, because people have tried this, and the people who do frequent flier miles don't honor returns, and then people are like, well, maybe he has an inside man who is ringing up the returns at a different rate, and he's like, nope, nope, I looked at all the receipts, everything is coming back 100%.
And it goes on and on, everyone's speculating, and then it finally becomes clear. He missed it when they were going over the bikes as closely as they possibly could, and they're seeing no wear and nothing changed, and it turns out--

jessamyn: But it didn't occur to them, yeah.

mathowie: Yeah. He had picked out a bike that was high- to mid-level and it didn't come with the absolute greatest component tree, but they made one bike on the floor have the top-of-the-line stuff, and so he was replacing, what he was doing was testing

them, he'd replaced a tiny, just the front derailleur, and it was going from the best--

jessamyn: With a lower-end derailleur. Or whatever.

mathowie: But he was going from the best to the second-best, and the bike was supposed to come with the second-best, that's why they said they didn't notice it for two months. That like, oh my god, he piece-by-piece replaced all the top-of-the-line components--

jessamyn: This crazy metaphysical thing, yes.

mathowie: Yeah! With the second! Like, those are still expensive. So he 'stole', in quote marks, $1700 worth of bike parts, but

he replaced it with $1200 worth of bike parts.

jessamyn: Right.

mathowie: That were also brand new! And it's what the bike should have come with, so yeah, it was good just to get some closure on, "Oh! That's what he was doing!" He was slowly testing them. He tried one small part, and then he tried a larger part, and they kept taking it back like it was no problem. And people were like, oh, he's probably got a, this is a psychological condition, so he has no impulse control, or he brings it home and his spouse says no, you can't purchase it, so he takes it back.

So it was good to see that it was a straight-up attempt at slow piece-by-piece theft. So they basically flagged the guy, they have several stores but he's not allowed to buy another bike again or return it, so I think it's effectively over. There isn't a real crazy crime here, but yeah. It was good to get, "Oh, that's what that guy was doing," to finally get some closure on it.

jessamyn: Right, right, right. And it was definitely, I mean, I just enjoyed it because it was, again, a play-around, watch the thing happen.

mathowie: Yeah, we all got to play Columbo for a bit, like, what could he be doing? That's some weird behavior. And so yeah, it was good to know that there was an actual thing going on.

jessamyn: From a purely personal perspective, I enjoyed the wedding ceremony for the non-religious Ask Metafilter thread.

mathowie: Aww.

jessamyn: Because as you know, I am a Justice of the Peace, and people have been kind of asking me to perform weddings, or at least come, like, "Hey, will you marry us next year?" kind of stuff. But the big thing I have to tell them is, I'm like, "I can't say the word 'God' at your wedding."

mathowie: (laughs)

jessamyn: Like, it's not... I just can't do it.

cortex: It's not gonna happen.

jessamyn: So it's only okay if this is completely areligious. Like, if you want another kind of wedding, that's great. I totally can't do it. And so it was great to get to read

this and see the different ways people manage that, what a wedding was to them, if it wasn't a religious wedding, and there were a whole bunch of great ideas, and it was just nice reading stuff! And there was a ton of great links, and it was a thread that was very helpful, and so I favorited it both to mention on the podcast, but also (laughing) make a note, because I'm a little nervous. Weddings are a big deal. Josh, you performed a wedding?

cortex: Yeah. I married my sister. Hey!

mathowie: Zing!

jessamyn, mathowie, and cortex: (laugh)

mathowie: In Florida.

jessamyn: Were you nervous?

cortex: Yeah. I mean, it's somebody's wedding. I wasn't super nervous, because...

jessamyn: It's your sister.

cortex: Well, actually (laughing), if it was some random stranger who couldn't resent me forever if it went badly.

jessamyn: But you knew you knew her well, so you know...

cortex: Yeah. I knew what I was getting into, and they had specifically approached me with that in mind. Like, they were like, okay, but we don't want a religious ceremony,

and I was, that's not really a problem for me!

jessamyn: (laughs)

cortex: I probably would have, she says, that's not really a problem for me because you guys know I'm totally, totally an atheist, right? Whereas I think [??] may have heard, oh, that's not really a problem for me, I don't mind not doing that, I guess.

jessamyn: Well, that's what I feel like I have to be really honest.

cortex: Yeah.

jessamyn: Like, I really am an atheist. But that's fine, but you have to know that about me, because I can't do any of the stuff.

cortex: Well, and I thought it was funny, because they double-checked on it, but really, I don't know if they had some specific reason to fear someone was going to hijack them with some God. Like, maybe that happened in a wedding they had or something like that.

jessamyn: Well, I think for people for whom it's important, it's really important!

cortex: Well, yeah, no, I would be totally angry if someone pulled something like that.

jessamyn: It would be like sneaking bacon into your vegan whatever.

cortex: Yeah.

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: Like, it's really important!

mathowie: I am bummed I missed this question. I had the exact situation of the person asking it, where me and my wife--

jessamyn: You're not Jewish!

cortex: (laughs)

mathowie: No, me and my wife weren't going to mention religion at all, and my brother-in-law was going to officiate, and so he had a book of what do you call them, I don't know, not oaths, but wedding patter, basically?

cortex: Vows.

jessamyn: Sure!

mathowie: Vows, yeah. He had a book of vows, and we just said, "Get a black marker, mark out anything with the word God or mentions anything religious or anything just old."

jessamyn: (laughs)

mathowie: Like the whole "Speak now or forever hold your peace," fuck that.

jessamyn: "Man and wife," right.

mathowie: Yeah, yeah. It was so funny because [we bought ?] this book, and even the most non-God ones we'd mark out half of it, and we really were sitting there in a car the day before going, "God, what is left? Jesus!"

jessamyn: (laughs)

mathowie: Just skeletal remains.

jessamyn: Well, that's kind of what I was thinking, because I've seen so many weddings on TV, but most of my friends who have gotten married have had slightly religious weddings, and they've been lovely. But I just couldn't perform one, you know, so I don't know what it would look like.

mathowie: Yeah, and in the end we ended up going with basically the shell of wedding vows, with all the stuff marked out. The whole thing was over in eight minutes or something.

jessamyn: People appreciate that!

mathowie: Yeah, it was great. And we weren't in a church doing this, it was great, so yeah.

jessamyn: Where'd you guys get married?

mathowie: In San Diego in this little... it was a, I guess it was advertised as a wedding chapel, but sort of a non-denominational thing in a nice setting.

jessamyn: Oh, neat!

mathowie: And then we had a backyard reception two miles away.

jessamyn: Josh, where'd you guys get married?

cortex: Multnomah County Courthouse, downtown.

mathowie: Ooh!

jessamyn: Sweet! I have been there!

cortex: And then we went to work.

mathowie: (laughs) And then you jumped on public transit?

cortex: Well, we were both in walking distance at that point. We both worked downtown, so.

jessamyn: (laughs)

mathowie: Sweet.

jessamyn: You know that my first marriage, I was at a drive-up window.

cortex: Yeah? That's pretty sweet.

jessamyn: In Las Vegas? [??]

mathowie: I thought you were married in Romania or something.

jessamyn: No, then I moved to Romania with my new husband.

mathowie: Oh.

jessamyn: I recommend it.

mathowie: The drive-up window, or the Romania?

jessamyn: Both, actually! The drive-up window was cheap and fast, and Romania, man, there is nothing you can get to know somebody more quickly in a non-prison setting than having to live in a post-socialist European country with them.

cortex and mathowie: (laugh)

mathowie: You could write a self-help book like that.

jessamyn: You know? That's always been my late career idea.

mathowie: Eat, Pray, Socialize, Socialist? I don't know.

jessamyn: (laughs)

mathowie: I thought this post was super popular, about "How do you sneak exercise in your daily life?" Like park far from the door of a store so you force yourself to walk a quarter-mile.

jessamyn: Sure, like little, little exercise hacks.

mathowie: Yeah, and what's the best hacks. Which cracked me up was someone saying, a lot of people said, "Run up stairs," and I realized, someone pointed out to me that I do that all the time even as a 30, now 40-year-old.

People were like, "Did you just run up like a little kid?" And I was just like, oh, that's just how I go up stairs. Someone in the thread said, when I'm going down the hallway in my house, I always do lunges. I lunge from the bathroom to the kitchen.

jessamyn and cortex: (laugh)

mathowie: And I was just thinking of Monty Python.

jessamyn: That was bleucube, yeah.

mathowie: Yeah, Department of Silly Walks. Like, someone lunging across their house 24 hours a day, just lunge, lunge.

jessamyn: I can always tell that I'm getting out of shape if going up the stairs is suddenly like a thing.

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: But I run up the stairs too, doesn't everybody do that?

mathowie: I thought so, yeah.

cortex: I do a lot of the time, but it depends on the situation. Like, if... this is a thing with cats, where my cats kind of get spooked when--

jessamyn: You run around.

cortex: --185 pounds of me is launching up the stairs too many times.

mathowie: (laughs)

cortex: So I've taken to screaming around my house a little bit less in the last few years.

jessamyn: Hey, how is your cat, now that your cat needs medicine?

cortex: Doing okay, actually! The diabetes has been pretty treatable. We're giving her insulin a couple times a day, which sounds ridiculous from the outside but it works fairly well with our normal schedules.

jessamyn: Good!

cortex: And if we're lucky, we'll get it down to once a day and then that'll be just super easy, but yeah, no.

jessamyn: And you're finding giving the cat a shot is okay?

cortex: Yeah, no, no, she just gets, once she's eating she doesn't even really know, you just grab a little skin on the back and give her a little injection and if you do it right she seriously doesn't even notice that it happened.

jessamyn: Sweet!

mathowie: I cannot, now that I have a cat that's approaching a year old, I cannot believe what they get used to.

When we first got the cat, it had some--

jessamyn: What's your cat's name again, Matt?

mathowie: Pumpkin!

jessamyn: Fiona named it?

mathowie: Yeah. (laughs)

jessamyn: Okay. I had a Pumpkin. (chuckles)

mathowie: Yeah, so Pumpkin had some weird skin rash stuff, so we had to give it a bath every couple days for a few weeks, and now if you squirt water on the cat for like, "No! Down!" the cat's just like, "Whatever."

jessamyn: (laughs)

mathowie: You can be soaking wet and he doesn't even care. Like, doesn't even register.

jessamyn: It's not a bath every other day.

mathowie: Yeah. But we only did it for a... that's all he remembers from his childhood, I guess, was getting bathed.

jessamyn: (laughs)

mathowie: So yeah. Squirt bottles do nothing!

Any other good Ask MeFi posts?

cortex: I'm spent.

jessamyn: Here is the one that was sort of funny but it kinda depends on how you look at it? But it was one of those kind of difficult, "My best friend has cancer, I'm trying to find a way to say 'Fuck Cancer', like, I need the world's funniest cancer t-shirt," basically?

And there was a lot of... as with a lot of complicated help stuff, there was a lot of good, useful feedback. But my favorite one was basically one MeFite who had to get a hysterectomy, and their friends gave her a horseshoe-shaped floral arrangement that looked like it should be hung on a horse that wins a race, and it had a banner that said "BEST WISHES ON YOUR NEUTERING".

mathowie and cortex: (laugh)

jessamyn: And it just made me laugh like hell. I mean, the thread is like, there's a whole bunch of people who are like, "Well, maybe a funny cancer shirt isn't what she wants?" Which of course is also a valid perspective. But that comment made me laugh.

mathowie: (chuckles)

jessamyn: But not maybe enough to want to put it on the Best Of blog?

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: Because who knows, you know. But yes. I enjoyed it.

mathowie: Best wishes on your neutering. That's amazing.

jessamyn: But the big horseshoe flower arrangement, too.

mathowie: Yeah. Wow. I loved this post on, this is a problem every cyclist with a roofrack

fears, because it's not an if it will happen, but when, is when--

jessamyn: alcahofa [ˈælkəˌhoʊfə]. How do you pronounce that username?

mathowie: Let me see...

jessamyn: alcaho [ˌælˈkæhoʊ]... I don't even know. Sorry.

mathowie: alcahofa [ˈælkəˌhɑfə]? alcahofa [ˈælkəˌhɑfə].

jessamyn: Mm?

mathowie: The problem is, you mount your bikes on your roof after you drive out of your garage, you go somewhere, you ride your bikes a zillion miles, you get back in your car, you drive home, you're so tired, and you forgot that you put your bikes on your roof and you slam them into your house.

And everyone--

jessamyn: And you ruin, if you're lucky, just your bike, but probably your bike house and car.

mathowie: Yeah. But I mean, this is thousands of dollars of damage and it's happened to almost everyone I know. It's never happened to me, and I rarely have bikes. I have a rack on the rear but trailer-hitch purposely.

jessamyn: Sure.

mathowie: Because I knew I'd be out of my gourd when I came home tired and I would never remember. So people were like, "How do you... what's a surefire way to make this never happen?"

And there's a couple best answers of people who have figured out, like, there's some sensors out there, that you can, like, if you get close to the... you put a sensor on the top of your house right outside of the garage door and one on your rack and if they ever get in line with each other it beeps like crazy, so you'll do that. And a lot of people came up with some simpler methods where it was like, always put a weird, when you do this put a weird thing in your car so you know, "Oh hey, my bikes are up there."
As a way to prevent this. But god, this is something that happens to everyone with roofracks. Thousands of dollars of damage. It's crazy.

jessamyn: And I, this... I toss my bike in the back of my car, because I've got a station wagon, so I've never had this problem, but it was interesting to read about it. And I have kayaks coming up, though, so this may be a future problem for me.

mathowie: Do you have a garage, or just a carport?

jessamyn: There's a garage at my dad's place.

mathowie: Oh, right.

jessamyn: Here I have nothing. I just park in the woods and whatever. But my dad's has a garage and a carport. In fact, the carport used to have--it probably still does--a pulley system, so you could basically hook underneath the kayak and then pulley it up to the top of the carport?

mathowie: Oh, nice.

jessamyn: And then lower it down onto the car? But it was my dad's ex-wife's and I don't really know how it ever worked, if it ever worked, but I think that's what I maybe want? I think that would be cool.

mathowie: Hm.

jessamyn: So yeah, carport. And garage.

mathowie: I see. Thirty-three years old... there was this, "I just saw the Total Eclipse of the Heart video for the first time, and oh my god, show me '80s videos."

cortex: Yeah. (laughs)

jessamyn: We put that on the Best Of blog. That was so awesome.

mathowie: And I'm like, I was like, how young is this person? This person's 33 so they were born in 1980, so I could see you just wouldn't be aware.

jessamyn: I listened to that song at my first job.

mathowie: (laughs) I can see you wouldn't remember '80s videos, because you were less than ten years old! You wouldn't sit around watching Take On Me by A-ha or Duran Duran

videos as a six-year-old, but I guess...

cortex: I feel like I have a very...

jessamyn: Well, and in the '90s there wasn't that much classic video stuff, either.

mathowie: Yeah.

cortex: I feel like I have pretty formative memories of Take On Me as a video.

mathowie: There's something about being 40 now that MTV hit when I was like, I think I got cable when I was 12? So it was just, I watched MTV for two hours a day until I was 18.

jessamyn: I didn't have cable until college.

mathowie: Aww.

jessamyn: Augh.

mathowie: So yeah, I got to live through this.

jessamyn: Although my dad had it, so we got to go to divorced dad cable.

cortex: Fuckin' A.

mathowie: Wow.

cortex: My best friend down the street had cable, so I would see it at his place.

mathowie: Oh, that's right. And pre-cable I'd have to record Friday night videos, there'd just be two hours of videos on NBC.

jessamyn: Right.

mathowie: And those VHS tapes were highly prized, like there's two hours of just videos, and oh god.

jessamyn: (laughs)

mathowie: We were so easily amused back then. The Safety Dance. Oh man, there are so many great... and it's so great that they're all on YouTube.

jessamyn: And so people put together a YouTube playlist of all those videos.

mathowie: Yeah.

jessamyn: So if you just want to press play and watch them all in a row, somebody did the work so that you can do that, which I thought was pretty terrific.

cortex: Very nice.

mathowie: There was three playlists. Wow.

jessamyn: So great.

mathowie: So we're going into late '80s.

jessamyn: So great.

mathowie: Awesome. Anything else?

jessamyn: I don't think so! I had a couple MetaTalk things that I thought were interesting. Or actually, one

IRL thing. A lot of these things I wound up putting on Best Of because I was so proud of everybody. Did anybody else have another Ask Metafilter thing?

cortex: Nope.

mathowie: No, I'm all done.

cortex: I will briefly mention that never used baby shoes was--well, he's in town, but he was at a meetup yesterday. So, hey, Canadians in Portland!

jessamyn: Right! Yeah, you told me that. That's cool!

mathowie: Yay!

jessamyn: But yeah, this was a IRL meetup that the Chicago people got together and they've now cooked dinner twice for the Hyde Park Ronald McDonald House.

So the Ronald McDonald House is where families of sick kids can stay. I don't know if it's free or cheap or whatever. And the meals are often put together by local do-gooders. So the whole deal is, "You and a bunch of friends want to cook dinner for the Ronald McDonald House people? And you guys come and bring a bunch of food and we'll slot you in and then you can feed some families of sick kids and do a good thing and eat dinner with them and hang out!"
And so garlic put it all together, and a couple other people showed up, and I just thought it was really nice.

cortex: Neat!

mathowie: Yeah, that's really cool.

jessamyn: It was a nice thing that they did.

mathowie: Yeah, I think it's free to stay at them. They're always next to a hospital, you know, that specializes in this kind of stuff.

jessamyn: Yeah.

mathowie: I don't think they want to burden families of sick kids with bills, so I think it's free, because they're always asking for money at an actual McDonald's.

jessamyn: Yeah. And I think it's one of McDonald's kind of do-gooder charity things that they do.

mathowie: eamondaly was there, it looks like.

jessamyn: Yeah! He zips in and out of the picture. But I just thought it was cool, and it made me go look to see where my local Ronald McDonald House is. Because it was a neat idea for a meetup, too. Because then you hang out and eat dinner, too, so it's a way to have a meal together and make a meal together.

cortex: Yeah. That's cool.

mathowie: Sweet! Photos. Neat. That was a really cool thing.

jessamyn: And I did want to mention--I feel like this is just Best Of blog time--

mathowie: (chuckles)

jessamyn: But the MetaTalk thread where we now have an OpenDyslexic font option?

mathowie: Oh, yeah.

jessamyn: For people who... OpenDyslexic is this interesting font where the letters are weighted, so if you have trouble with reading letters because it feels like they flip around, it makes it a little bit easier to see which way is up with letters, and so we--pb, really, I guess--did a thing that you can use OpenDyslexic as an embedded font, and this thread talks about it. And we got at least one or two people e-mailing us being like, "Wow! That totally changes stuff

and made it super interesting," and pb also commented yesterday and made a list of what fonts people actually have set on Metafilter, which people would probably find interesting if you're a font nerd.

cortex: Yeah, I feel like we've, I think he's posted that sort of thing once or twice previously too.

jessamyn: Yeah.

cortex: Every once in a while it comes up and he'll do a run-down.

mathowie: (descending whistle) Sweet.

cortex: There was also, in happy MetaTalk stuff, the officialing of the Metafilter chat room.

jessamyn: Oh, right!

cortex: So is now officially out there.

jessamyn: Is a real thing.

cortex: Yeah. No more [??].

jessamyn: Yeah. We pop in from time to time, and people seem to like it, and what else is there?

mathowie: Xabber on Android? Wow.

jessamyn: I'm happy about that! I mean, that has really seemed like it's just been a net good all the way around, right?

cortex: Yep. It's just been nice. It's been cool. People seem to enjoy it. So yay.

mathowie: Sweet.

jessamyn: Hooray for Chat!

mathowie: That about it?

cortex: I think that's it!

jessamyn: It's an hour and a half! Can we say bye to the podcast and then you guys can tell me what happened in Game of Thrones?

cortex: Yeah, okay.

mathowie: Sure. Alright, we're done.

cortex: Okay, everybody stop listening now!

mathowie and jessamyn: (laugh)

mathowie: Thanks, bye!

jessamyn: Thank you!

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