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August 30, 2014, 05:16:02 pm
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1  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Do teachers these days still use overhead projectors? on: Today at 12:27:20 pm
Do teachers these days still use overhead projectors?

They do.  They're fancy now, and they're called Elmo.  At least that's a popular brand just now.  They come with little adjustable cameras so you can project little demonstrations from the lab bench on the wall, and they have buttons which you can push to dismiss them and they fold down under the bench and out of the way when you're finished.  They also have little USB ports so that they can be integrated with other learning technologies.  In the end, though, Elmo is an overhead projector, so yes.
2  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Opinion of Ernest on: Today at 12:20:42 pm
Really the only thing I don't like about him is that he's a mod,

...and a particularly poor one at that.  

Still, he's probably the most informed poster here, one with a very droll sense of humor, one with courage and wit, and otherwise hail fellow well met.  

Then again, you can't ignore the really bad moderation aspect.  That's like saying, "Other than that, Mrs. Lincoln, how was the play?"  

3  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: dr. pepper. on: Today at 11:52:53 am
It's okay.  A bit like pressurized, carbonated prune juice.  I wouldn't buy it but the times it was offered to me I drank it and found that I could stomach it well enough.  I assume that we're not talking about sugar-free dr. pepper.  I've never tasted that, but I assume that it's nasty like all sugar-free sodas.
4  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Americans both support unions and right to work laws on: Today at 11:38:03 am

There seems to be some confusion.  The irony is that folks posting here seem very confused, yet they claim that the people answering the poll are confused.  Let's clear this up:  The folks answering the poll question are not confused.  They were asked the questions, therefore they know what questions they were answering.  

Here are the questions relevant to this thread:

1. "Do you approve or disapprove of labor unions?"

53% claim that they approve.  I approve of them as well.  (Whether I want to be represented by one or want to join one is a different question, and one which was not asked in this poll.)

2.  "Some states have passed right-to-work or open shop laws that say each worker has the right to hold his job in a company, whether he joins a labor union or not.  If you were asked to vote on such a law, would you vote for it or against it?"

I would definitely vote for such a law, and I am not surprised that a majority (71%) of respondents in the poll would also vote in favor of such a law.

There is no evidence of confusion among those answering the poll questions.  Moreover, it should not come as a surprise that most folks are, simultaneously, tolerant of the idea of the existence of unions but leary of having laws which allow them to operated in a heavy-handed way.
5  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Americans both support unions and right to work laws on: August 29, 2014, 08:38:35 pm
In typical American fashion.

I guess I'm in the majority, more or less.  I support the right of unions to exist, but I'm also a big fan of right to work laws.  You can have a union, but I'll thank you not to force me to be in it to have a gig.  Calling it "typical american" seems odd, though, because we're usually not accused of subtlety.

6  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Opinion of Ernest on: August 29, 2014, 06:42:13 pm
Smart, open=minded, humorous, well-informed poster, and I like him.

On the other hand, he's totally dysfunctional as a moderator.  Of course, like all moderators here he's an absolutely horrible person by virtue of his being a moderator.  I'm not sure why becoming a moderator on this forum seems to cause a sort of madness, but it does.  His recent hijacking, moving to another board, and totally misrepresenting the original question in R2D2's immigration thread clearly regarding a point of US General Discussion to Forum Community is clear evidence of his madness.


7  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Does anyone of you know ... on: August 29, 2014, 11:27:00 am
this guy had a bigger and creepier problem.

But not as creepy as this guy.

8  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Is there a hidden "mini-decade" between the 80s and 90s? on: August 28, 2014, 09:06:40 pm
You could argue the same of the 67-72 period.  Neither the Sixties of the Andy Griffith show and the Civil Rights battles nor the gas-guzzling, polyester-wearing Seventies represent well the cult of flower children and war protesters in the summers of love.
9  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: American Southwest Could Face Megadrought This Century on: August 28, 2014, 08:40:46 pm
Weird map.  There's a little rectangular gulf where the Berkshires and a good bit of southern New England used to be.  What happened to Cape Cod and Cape Ann?

10  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Does anyone of you know ... on: August 28, 2014, 08:23:36 pm
We're having ants right now.  I don't know how it started.  First there were a few marching in a column across the dining room floor in the evening.  We swabbed the floor, cleaned everything, and thought that they'd leave, but we kept seeing them.  Then we sprayed vinegar, because I generally don't like killing animals.  I'm not a Buddhist or Hindu or anything like that, but I don't like killing animals.  It worked for a while, but it got to be too much trouble.  I became desensitized, finally, and I started wasting everyone I saw, but it's futile.  It's like any other country besides China going to war with China.  I'd kill fifty every night, but the next morning there were fifty more, every morning.  Finally, we got serious.  We bought some 40 Mule Team borax and mixed it with honey and put it in a bowl.  Now we have about a thousand dead ants in the little honeybowl every morning.  Maybe in about ten years we'll have killed them all.

I guess with a bat I'd be reluctant to kill it too.  I'd probably go out to the garage and get the butterfly net and close myself in the bathroom and try to catch it.  If that didn't work I'd take a big towel or a blanket and try.  If it flew at me I might pussy out and run away.  I might do that several times, but I'd keep trying.  If that failed repeatedly, eventually I'd probably get serious.  I think at some point I'd get pissed off enough to get my raqcuetball racquet out and start aiming to kill.  I'd probably wear big gloves and a big jacket and a football helmet, even if it's warm, just to protect myself. 

Good luck.
11  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: eight arms to hold you on: August 28, 2014, 08:02:02 pm
my thing for octopuses.

Is it octopuses when you have many of one species, and octopi when you have many different species, or vice-versa?  I never can remember these things.
12  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Favorite planet is our solar system? on: August 28, 2014, 07:45:35 pm
Didn't we have this thread at least once before?  That poll offered Pluto and that's how I voted.  I also mentioned pluto in a poll of my own several years ago.  Since this one doesn't mention Pluto, I'm a bit rudderless.  I'll vote for Earth just to throw some support to the local team.

13  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Post your 10 favorite musical bands/artists on: August 28, 2014, 10:19:14 am
Beyoncé Knowles
Beyoncé Carter
Beyoncé & Jay-Z
Destiny's Child
Beyoncé and Missy Elliott
Beyoncé and Free
Beyoncé and MC Lyte
Jay-Z featuring Beyoncé
Beyoncé as Sasha Fierce
Beyoncé as Etta James

14  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Your three favorite avatars on: August 28, 2014, 10:07:43 am
Aang the airbender, Zuko the firebender, and Katara the firebender, although the latter can be somewhat irksome at times.
15  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Full House set to return on: August 27, 2014, 07:20:48 pm
It's going to be hard to take Jesse seriously without a mullet.
16  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Is Beyonce cultism getting annoying? on: August 27, 2014, 09:16:07 am
Heavens no.  Nothing about Beyonce is getting annoying.
17  General Politics / Political Debate / Re: Women in Combat on: August 27, 2014, 09:10:50 am
I know some very combative women, so yes.  

18  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Pennsylvania Quiz on: August 26, 2014, 07:55:31 pm
5. What Pennsylvania town is nicknamed "The Sweetest Place on Earth", and why? - Hershey?

We were just there two weeks ago.  Went to Hershey Park.  My son is now a Twizzler (between 54 and 60 inches tall), and can now ride all the big roller coasters.  (I'm a Jolly Rancher, over 60 inches tall.  Not sure what extra privileges that brings.)  Saw the big signs "Sweetest Place on Earth" signs as we entered the city limits.  Interestingly, we passed a disproportionately large number of dentists' offices on the way in.  I guess it should not be surprising.  Still, the high density of family dentistry offices in Hershey is very striking.

FYI, Milton Hershey started his first successful company in Lancaster.  It was the Lancaster Caramel Company, founded in 1887.  He sold that in 1900 and opened a new business 30 miles north of Lancaster, near his birthplace of Derry, PA.  The town that grew up around his business became Hershey, Pa, the Sweetest Place on Earth.  And home to a thriving cottage dental industry.

Lucky for those early 20th Century dental students, Hershey's wife took ill and he had to cancel his travel plans to return to the US in 1912 and got a refund on his tickets that he had bought for a trip on the luxury liner the RMS Titanic.  As it was, he did not board the Titanic, and lived to build the world's largest chocolate company, to the economic security of dentists everywhere.
19  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Pennsylvania Quiz on: August 26, 2014, 03:22:37 pm
5. What county are the towns of "Intercourse" and "Blue Ball" both located in?

I just discovered a community called Fertility just about a mile east of Lancaster city limits.  It's behind the big Walmart on Lincoln Highway.
20  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: How would you like to be buried? on: August 26, 2014, 11:36:30 am
Preserved a la Jeremy Bentham, preferably with head intact, and donate my eye to science.

I might have guess that, given your macabre signature photo. 
21  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: is your urine ever bubbly? on: August 26, 2014, 11:07:02 am
I enjoyed the game of "try to cover all the toilet water with bubbles".

I rather enjoyed the opposite game:  breaking them with my projectile stream.

But that's a different phenomenon.   When the perfectly normal (non-effervescent) urine hits a hard surface, it creates the foaming effect.  The various substances present in the urine alter the surface tension of the water in the bowl and the force with which the urine strikes the water cam cause that effect.  Those bubbles are born in the bowl.

I took the question at face value:  "bubbly urine" implies that the urine exhibits cavitation as it is excreted, and it is not something I have experienced.  I think it might have a physiological explanation.  It may be nothing to worry about, or it may indicate a medical condition which requires treatment.
22  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Is this post racially insensitive? on: August 24, 2014, 07:33:50 pm
no, since he never said that the roomie was articulate.
23  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: out of all the odd and weird posts in the update... on: August 24, 2014, 07:20:13 pm
Surely the weirdest post is when Bushie's family reacts to his father's diabetes diagnosis by laughing about it and vowing to only eat healthy 3 or 4 days a week.

But the whole concept of the update was absurd, ab initio.  It ought to be given a free pass when it comes to folks choosing weird posts, since it rests on the idea that such a thread is reasonable and valid in the first place.  My instinct would have been to post this, but in case I didn't I will now. 

Still, to be fair, the episode you point out is far more jarring than the urine indicator colors. 

24  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: is your urine ever bubbly? on: August 24, 2014, 06:35:48 pm
bubbly, like champagne? 

I guess not.  It has been every shade of yellow but never effervescent.  My excrement sometimes is.  After a hard night featuring Mexican food and hard beverage I used to get three-phase movements:  solid, liquid, and gas, with the occasional explosive, high-pressure effervescence.  I also never heeded the "don't drink the tapwater" advice that tourist books give for visiting sites in the developing world.  Nowadays, I consume more fiber and green vegetables along with my meat and alcohol, and I'm a big fan of bottled water, so my evacuate is generally of the high-density, well-turned and fairly solid variety.

Never had bubbly pee, though.  You probably ought to see a urologist.

25  General Politics / Political Debate / Re: What do YOU think should happen to the Eurozone? on: August 24, 2014, 06:24:38 pm
The Euro was a mistake and should be eliminated

I'm no expert either, and my portfolio doesn't really feature much in the way of German or French or Italian investments as I prefer established US companies with a somewhat aggressive 30% developing world stock in the mix, but I have always been against the common currency.  That said, I do like the idea of a stable, peaceful Europe.  The Europe of the 90s was fine.  No need for the Euro.  Still, the one semester that I worked in Amsterdam since the Euro became the coin of the realm, it was also satisfactory then, but from my conversations at that time with European workers, not only from Netherlands but from other (poorer) parts of the continent, I gather that they are not universally satisfied with the common arrangement.  I think it should be abandoned.  There would be some initial disequilibrium, but I suspect that it would be for the best in the long run.
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