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Thread: Stuff you just don't get.

  1. #2881
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    Mad magazine had an article back in the 1960s on gifts to give people you don't like. Examples (the few that I remember) ...


    A home movie of the guy's kids. (On film, of course. So he has to buy a projection system to see it.)

    Volume 1 of an Encyclopedia. (So he has to buy the rest of the set so as not to waste it.)

    A tool set for the young son. (So the kid proceeds to destroy the furniture with hammers,. saws, drills, etc.)

    A pair of rabbits, that kind of thing. The drum was probably in there somewhere.

  2. #2882
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    My brother said only one word to me, which I cannot repeat here, and which seemed implausible in view of our shared parentage, and then he hung up.
    If it's the word I'm thinking of ("illegitimate offspring"), I once had the incredibly amusing experience of hearing one of my younger brothers call his twin brother that same word during an argument.

    "You're twins." I said, immediately after.

    (If the word was instead "son of a (dog)", which would also work, then I apologize for the derail.)

  3. #2883
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    Quote Originally Posted by KaiYeves View Post
    If it's the word I'm thinking of ("illegitimate offspring"), I once had the incredibly amusing experience of hearing one of my younger brothers call his twin brother that same word during an argument.

    "You're twins." I said, immediately after.

    (If the word was instead "son of a (dog)", which would also work, then I apologize for the derail.)
    I was thinking "illegitimate offspring", as "son of female dog" is more than word in both forms (forum friendly and not forum friendly). Though calling your brother "son of female dog" is almost as funny as calling your twin "illegitimate offspring".
    At night the stars put on a show for free (Carole King)

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  4. #2884
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    I guess you shouldn't say "Well I'll be a monkey's uncle!" to your niece or nephew either.

  5. #2885
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    Quote Originally Posted by KaiYeves View Post
    If it's the word I'm thinking of ("illegitimate offspring"), I once had the incredibly amusing experience of hearing one of my younger brothers call his twin brother that same word during an argument.
    It's possible, and not as uncommon as you might think. It's called heteropaternal superfecundation, and the prevalence was 2.4% in one survey of fraternal twins. (That survey is of course in a selected subset of the general population, since it involved genetic testing specifically for paternity suits, but it's nevertheless a striking result, isn't it?)

    Grant Hutchison

  6. #2886
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    Quote Originally Posted by DonM435 View Post
    I guess you shouldn't say "Well I'll be a monkey's uncle!" to your niece or nephew either.
    Walt Disney had an innocuous one back in the 1950s. "Well I'll be a blue-nosed gopher!"

  7. #2887
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    It's possible, and not as uncommon as you might think. It's called heteropaternal superfecundation, and the prevalence was 2.4% in one survey of fraternal twins. (That survey is of course in a selected subset of the general population, since it involved genetic testing specifically for paternity suits, but it's nevertheless a striking result, isn't it?)

    Grant Hutchison
    That is a striking result. Interestingly, this subject came up in a conversation a week ago, and I speculated that chances of it occurring it must be related to variation in release times of the ova. And now I'm happy to know it's called heteropaternal superfecundation!

  8. #2888
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    Quote Originally Posted by Torsten View Post
    Interestingly, this subject came up in a conversation a week ago, and I speculated that chances of it occurring it must be related to variation in release times of the ova.
    That's a possibility, but fertilization occurs most commonly in the ampulla of the fallopian tube, and unfertilized ova hang around for about three days in the ampulla before they move down the tube to the uterus. So there's plenty of time for ova that were released from the ovary simultaneously to be fertilized by two separate ... um ... conception opportunities.

    Grant Hutchison
    Last edited by grant hutchison; 2017-Dec-22 at 07:12 PM. Reason: typo

  9. #2889
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    Quote Originally Posted by SeanF View Post
    What about time travel? Travel to the past is usually referred to as "going back" in time, and to the future is "going forward".

    Likewise, when we set our clocks for Daylight Savings Time, the change from 2am to 3am is considered "springing ahead" and changing it from 2am to 1am is "falling back."

    But if we reschedule an event from 2am to 3am, we say we've moved the event "back". That terminology would seem to be the outlier.
    I'd like to give it a shot. In the Spring, by resetting clocks from 2am to 3am, every single scheduled event has been moved up, in the queue, one hour closer to us. And, as you point out, moving events closer to us is moving them up (in the queue).
    To be honest, though, it all seems to make sense to me, but I'm not sure if I can explain it. And it may only seem to make sense because I've been using it that way all my life.

    EDIT: I'm going to give it a try. You're making a trip, and you have three stops scheduled - you will stop at location A, then location B, then location C. So as you move from A to B to C, you are moving forward.

    However, your visit to location B comes before your visit to location C. B comes before C, B precedes C, ergo B is ahead of C, so if the B visit is moved in the direction of the C visit, it is being moved back. If the C visit is moved in the direction of the B visit, it is being moved forward.
    I hope I don't disagree with one of the Hutchinsons.

  10. #2890
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    Quote Originally Posted by grapes View Post
    I'd like to give it a shot. In the Spring, by resetting clocks from 2am to 3am, every single scheduled event has been moved up, in the queue, one hour closer to us. And, as you point out, moving events closer to us is moving them up (in the queue).
    Sure. Changing the clock from 2am to 3am is effectively the same as moving a future event from 8am to 7am (the future event arrives an hour sooner), so it makes sense to say "moving forward" in both cases.

    Quote Originally Posted by grapes View Post
    I hope I don't disagree with one of the Hutchinsons.
    Is it possible not to disagree with at least one of them?

    Grant hasn't told us yet which way he uses the terminology, has he?
    Sometimes you win, sometimes you learn

  11. #2891
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    It's possible, and not as uncommon as you might think. It's called heteropaternal superfecundation, and the prevalence was 2.4% in one survey of fraternal twins. (That survey is of course in a selected subset of the general population, since it involved genetic testing specifically for paternity suits, but it's nevertheless a striking result, isn't it?)

    Grant Hutchison
    Personally, I think "product of heteropaternal superfecundation!" has a bit too many syllables to catch on as an insult.

    (My brothers are fraternal, but J. resembles Mom's father when he was young, while P. has darker hair like me and like Mom herself, so they're probably on the up-and-up and the insult probably was absurd.)

  12. #2892
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    Wouldn't a megaphone be the most parental-contemptuous gift for a child? Too bad the Gene Belcher megaphone isn't real.
    Calm down, have some dip. - George Carlin

  13. #2893
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    Quote Originally Posted by KaiYeves View Post
    (My brothers are fraternal, but J. resembles Mom's father when he was young, while P. has darker hair like me and like Mom herself, so they're probably on the up-and-up and the insult probably was absurd.)
    Still, you probably owe the insulter an apology for impugning his scientific accuracy. Then, I guess, an apology to the insultee and parents for pointing out the possibility ...




    Or, I suppose, you could just let sleeping dogs lie.

    Grant Hutchison

  14. #2894
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    That's a possibility, but fertilization occurs most commonly in the ampulla of the fallopian tube, and unfertilized ova hang around for about three days in the ampulla before they move down the tube to the uterus. So there's plenty of time for ova that were released from the ovary simultaneously to be fertilized by two separate ... um ... conception opportunities.

    Grant Hutchison
    Is that the explanation for all non identical twins?
    sicut vis videre esto
    When we realize that patterns don't exist in the universe, they are a template that we hold to the universe to make sense of it, it all makes a lot more sense.
    Originally Posted by Ken G

  15. #2895
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    Quote Originally Posted by profloater View Post
    Is that the explanation for all non identical twins?
    Not necessarily - if both fraternal twins have the same father, the two eggs could equally well have been fertilized by two spermatozoa produced during a single ... event.

    Grant Hutchison

  16. #2896
    Why my hot water pipe won't thaw over where it shoudl be frozen with a hair dryer and a heat gun and can't get to the spot where it is frozen.
    From the wilderness into the cosmos.
    You can not be afraid of the wind, Enterprise: Broken Bow.
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  17. #2897
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    Not necessarily - if both fraternal twins have the same father, the two eggs could equally well have been fertilized by two spermatozoa produced during a single ... event.

    Grant Hutchison
    Not to mention that well-behaved families historically have but one father-candidate at a given time. At least I should hope so.

  18. #2898
    Quote Originally Posted by astrotimer View Post
    Why my hot water pipe won't thaw over where it shoudl be frozen with a hair dryer and a heat gun and can't get to the spot where it is frozen.
    the pipe on the top of heater is warm even before I put the heat gun to it, ran the heat gun over all the pipe in basement several times and the above the basement has a similar treatment and it is just the hot water.
    From the wilderness into the cosmos.
    You can not be afraid of the wind, Enterprise: Broken Bow.
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  19. #2899
    All fixed frozen supply to the heater.
    From the wilderness into the cosmos.
    You can not be afraid of the wind, Enterprise: Broken Bow.
    https://davidsuniverse.wordpress.com/

  20. #2900
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    Quote Originally Posted by DonM435 View Post
    Not to mention that well-behaved families historically have but one father-candidate at a given time. At least I should hope so.
    Rather depends on a specific definition of "well-behaved," doesn't it?
    _____________________________________________
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    "Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"

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  21. #2901
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gillianren View Post
    Rather depends on a specific definition of "well-behaved," doesn't it?
    And of "family".

    Grant Hutchison

  22. #2902
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    Quote Originally Posted by pzkpfw View Post
    American Football.

    Got a channel now that shows games. Tried to watch some.

    It's like they took the worst bits of Rugby Union and Rugby League and made a game out of them. Seems to have been invented by advertisers; people keep watching hoping something interesting will eventually happen, and there's plenty of time to show an ad in between the bits where that hope gets dashed.

    Apology for starting a religious discussion.
    As a USian, I find regularly find myself in a small minority of non-fans of American football. When asked why, I tend to say "Why? In football [in the US, we never say 'American football'; obviously, there is only one kind of football], they run a play, then stop and talk about it. They drop the ball, stop the clock, and stand around and talk about it."

    My non-football-fannishness is something that I must carefully conceal in many places, including the Housatonic River Valley and most sports bars.
    Information about American English usage here. Floating point issues? Please read this before posting.

    How do things fly? This explains it all.

    Actually they can't: "Heavier-than-air flying machines are impossible." - Lord Kelvin, president, Royal Society, 1895.



  23. #2903
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    Note on frozen pipes: I might do a survey of frozen drafts. Take a stick of incense, light it.....
    producing smoke. Carefully move it slowly about the vicinity of the pipe which freezes ( and on a very cold day...especially when it is windy , and see if you detect any small drafts of outside air directed toward your pipe.
    I had found one above my garage door , which waited for 15 years before it decided to rear it's ugly head. A little judicious carpentry later; I blocked the path with a strip of 1" by 4" on the top of the door , where it greets some neoprene weather striping , and now it passes the incense draft test
    and has never frozen again. No house should be as tight as a bottle. That being said, severe drafts
    are a terrible as well as a dangerous nuisance. If it is the foundation sill , clean it well.If you have compressed air, use it to remove accumulated dust and dirt, which inhibit caulking properly.Get it clean. Get it dry.
    Spray a little urethane varnish on the area that you want to caulk . It will dry in an hour.
    Get some good silicon caulk and fill that cavity well. Test afterwards. You can beat any draft and sleep better after. Your efforts will be rewarded.
    Dan
    Last edited by danscope; 2017-Dec-23 at 09:08 PM.

  24. #2904
    How a 2 kilo cat can sound like an elephant going thru the house.

    Last nights frozen pipe was at unusual spot. There are usually two culprits when they freeze and was unusual it just affected the hot water.
    From the wilderness into the cosmos.
    You can not be afraid of the wind, Enterprise: Broken Bow.
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  25. #2905
    My nieces fathers who do not want to help raise them.

    People who don't get some families can be close over multiple generations. I know my great aunts and uncles (ok most are probably more like aunts and uncles) and went to school with some of my cousins.

    People who think I have to share everything with everyone.
    From the wilderness into the cosmos.
    You can not be afraid of the wind, Enterprise: Broken Bow.
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  26. #2906
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    Quote Originally Posted by astrotimer View Post
    People who think I have to share everything with everyone.
    You could always show them pictures from your colonoscopy to disabuse them of this notion.
    Calm down, have some dip. - George Carlin

  27. #2907
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    Quote Originally Posted by Delvo View Post
    A place I've applied at several times over the years has applicants take a huge test of multiple-choice questions to try to determine what kind of attitude/personality the applicant has. The questions fall into a few general themes, and in some cases the kinds of answers they want are obvious... But then there are the ones about multi-tasking... isn't the fact that all the research on it shows that there's no such thing, and that people who pride themselves on doing it are actually the least efficient at organizing and prioritizing tasks, sufficiently well-known these days that employers would have started trying to filter the opposite way now, to avoid the fakers?... Or is this particular corporate myth just too stubborn and too deeply embedded in corporate culture...?
    Quote Originally Posted by DonM435 View Post
    I’d say give an honest answer and take your chances.
    That brings me to the other problem with this test: most of the questions are impossible to give an honest answer to, because there's no way to tell what most of them mean, or at least what the test creators think the available answers mean.

    For example, there are statements that we are to give a level of agreement/disagreement with in the form "the problem with X is Y". That kind of thing is what would usually be said by someone who thinks that Y makes X fundamentally a bad thing. But that connotation isn't built in to exactly what the words of the statement say; all that's technically there is an admission that X, even if it might be great in general, does have at least one imperfection, and Y is it. So would agreeing with the statement be read by the test's creators as meaning I disapprove of X overall, as that kind of sentence would normally be used, or just that I acknowledge the role of Y as a challenge X faces, which is all it literally says? And would disagreeing be read as praising X as so good that a little blemish like Y doesn't matter overall, or suggesting some other unidentified thing might be a bigger drawback than Y is, or denying that Y has any relevance to X at all?

    Then there are the ones that ask about something that has a clear opposite which the dichotomous structure of the questions brings to mind; would disagreeing be read as meaning I think the opposite, or as allowing a neutral position between the two?... and thus, would agreeing be read as a rejection of the opposite, or as allowing that both the original and the opposite might be true in different circumstances/ways? In these cases, even the neutral option can't be counted on as being read as neutral; if the test's creators thought of disagreement with 1 as -1, then the half-way response is 0, but if they thought that disagreement with 1 was 0, then the half-way response is , which is still partial agreement!

    Then there are the ones that say something "sometimes" happens, and it's always something that really does happen. But it typically doesn't say anything indicating how often it happens, not even loosely with words like "usually" or "rarely", so obviously agreement or disagreement will be read as a claim that it's either rare or common, but there's no clue of which is which. Worse yet, there's a subcategory of these in which the thing clearly bad, and doesn't never really happen, but is uncommon enough that it would normally only be brought up by complainers, people with negative attitudes, so the statement we're to agree or disagree with is technically accurate but unmistakably comes out as a cynical whine. So would I be agreeing/disagreeing with the obviously deliberately written tone, or with the technical facts of the statement? If the former, then agreement would be complaining as if the thing were especially common, and disagreement would be dismissing it as so uncommon as to be not worth considering and whining about; if the latter, agreement or disagreement would just be acknowledging or denying the facts of reality.

    On top of that, it might seem that the most basic method of avoiding such problems would usually be to pick the most neutral answer, but it's not always possible to even tell what that is, and, even if it were, a long series of neutral non-answers would be conveying another message itself. But what would they think that message was? That I'm hiding what I really think? That I generally think about things so little that I never come to conclusions of my own? That I find their questions invalid?

    None of the above issues are about deciding how to give them what they want instead of just telling the truth. They're about needing to know how one's audience will interpret messages in order to voiding being misunderstood by choosing the right message to be understood correctly. They've set up as much of the test as possible to make it impossible to do something even that basic.

    It's like everything about every part of the entire test is designed to be as comprehensively worthless as anything could possibly be in every conceivable way. It's so obvious that the idea of actually finding out anything about job applicants this way can't be anything but a scam, that it's hard to believe any business anywhere ever really bought into this crap. (And I doubt that it's even legal.) ...which brings up another "thing I just don't get": how in the world did any institution anywhere ever fall for stuff like this instead of immediately recognizing it as transparently the creation of a "consultant" whose only interest was obviously in making the "consultant" seem important?

    Quote Originally Posted by DonM435 View Post
    ...take your chances.
    Based on past experience with this company's corporate language application process, I don't believe I have any actual chance anyway. They don't seem to like the answers I've given before, I have neither the intention nor any clue how to change them next time because even if I wanted to be dishonest giving them the answers they want could make it obvious that I'm just giving them the answers they want, and an unrelated issue came up during an interview a few years ago. One of the questions their HR schlock asked was how I would design an employee training program about "diversity", and my answer was that I don't create training programs and wasn't applying for job doing that. When she pressed for more on "diversity" alone without the absurd framing device of a training program, I said I don't think about it because I don't care what kinds of backgrounds or demographic details my co-workers or customers have. I seem to have been blacklisted in the company since then. Apparently, they wanted some pretentious blather praising how awesome "diversity" is and how radically everything would be improved by as much "diversity" as possible. The world of corporate language consultants has completely taken this place over.
    Last edited by slang; 2017-Dec-26 at 09:35 AM. Reason: language

  28. #2908
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    The Wi-Fi at this hotel seems to dislike Google. All other sites work fine. Weird.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  29. #2909
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    The Wi-Fi at this hotel seems to dislike Google. All other sites work fine. Weird.
    Hotel Bing?

  30. #2910
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    Maybe so! The first fruits of net non-neutrality?
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

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