Pharyngula

Hairy horde marches on

I just stagger back from yet another long day of travel, and what do I discover? You’ve filled up the las entry in the endless thread again. Does the horde never sleep?

Anyway, we will launch this one with a mystery. Watch this video of an Oregon bigfoot:

Now the mystery. Why is it that all sightings of bigfoot are such obvious scams? They are typically badly done messes like a poor and shaky camera recording, or a pile of rotting meat in a fur suit. This one suffers from overly slick choreography — isn’t it nice how the camera zooms into focus only briefly, just as Bigfoot turns to look at the cameraman? At least this guy invested in a nice hairy man suit and put some effort into the makeup, but it’s still a guy in a costume.

And wait — the creator’s name is “John E. Walker”? Yeah, right.

As if you need anything to talk about, at least you can start by ripping into this video. I have no idea where you’ll end up from there, of course.

Comments

  1. #1 speedweasel
    January 17, 2010

    I hate vans

  2. #2 Jadehawk, OM
    January 17, 2010

    must be a cousin of the Geico Cavemen. The face shows distinct family resemblance.

  3. #3 InfraredEyes
    January 17, 2010

    That video would be a lot more convincing if the silly bugger had resisted the temptation to include a face shot.

  4. #4 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    January 17, 2010

    Full again. Do you people think thread is free or grows on trees or something?

    Yes, yes we do. Poopyhead. :)

    I hate vans

    I don’t hate vans, I just think converses are much better looking.

  5. #5 Jadehawk, OM
    January 17, 2010

    Do you people think thread is free or grows on trees or something?

    Is that a trick question?

  6. #6 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 17, 2010

    You call that a video? I saw more writing than action. Still, call the National Enquirer. Looks like Bigfoot had Elvis’ baby…

  7. #7 Glen Davidson
    January 17, 2010

    Obviously an evolutionist scam, trying to cover up the lack of transitional forms between apes and humans.

    And if they were ever proven to exist, well, then we’d have to ask why Bigfoots still exist if humans evolved from (something like) them. If the premise is that evolution is impossible, then the conclusion is that evolution is impossible.

    On a different tack, the “films of Bigfoot” remind me of creationists and their many incompatible “ideas” of how it must have occurred. That is to say, this “Bigfoot” doesn’t look like other “Bigfoots” (Bigfeet?). The face is some hideous Halloween mask, while others look (sort of) like gorilla faces.

    So there will likely be fights over the “true Bigfoot,” akin to the fights over which site on Ararat is the “real site of Noah’s ark.”

    Glen D
    http://tinyurl.com/mxaa3p

  8. #8 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 17, 2010

    Do you people think thread is free or grows on trees or something?

    No, we think this thread pays for the Trophy Daughter’s? tuition.

  9. #9 Carlie
    January 17, 2010

    He’s following the most noted mythical creature the US has, and he puts his camera down at his side as he runs after it? Guy can’t run and hold his arm up at the same time? Sheesh.

    And yeah, if you have a cheap costume, hi-def isn’t the way to go.

  10. #10 rndm_arshl
    January 17, 2010

    I prefer the 1970′s In Search Of-type bigfoots. You know, the ones that throw rocks and grab people through living room windows.

  11. #11 https://www.google.com/accounts/o8/id?id=AItOawmCjarMSG5ZZR58WO-P0Vxt6VsXUB3PIB0
    January 17, 2010

    Anyone seen aronra’s “five facts” vid where he describes his bigfoot story? It’s hilarious!

  12. #13 mothman
    January 17, 2010

    HA, love it. Almost seems like a tribute to classical footage… or viral marketing. Setting aside reality – even if bf’s did exist, footage like this would still be bogus. The hoaxer has zero knowledge of animal behavior. It would be nearly impossible for someone to be following such an elusive animal at a casual stroll for 5 minutes, especially in such close proximity. You would think there would be some sort of behavioral response, unless it was habituated to humans. If that were the case, we’d see these alongside the elk in Estes park.

  13. #14 Carlie
    January 17, 2010

    A sasquøtch once bit my sister…

  14. #15 Darren Garrison
    January 17, 2010

    Just a couple of days ago I finished a good book on the history and scammary of bigfoot. The guy had some questionable ideas about the psychology behind the legends, but it is a good read.

    Buy it here:

    http://www.amazon.com/Bigfoot-Legend-Joshua-Blu-Buhs/dp/0226079791/

    Steal it here:

    http://avaxhome.ws/ebooks/biography/Bigfoot_The_Life_and_Times_of_a_Legend.html

  15. #16 Dust
    January 17, 2010

    The sound on the camera is on, but he says nothing when he first sees BF! Come on, its a definate WTF moment and he says nothing? Also, pretty brave of him to follow such a huge unknown creature when he was hiking alone in the woods….

    Yeah, I’m convinced. (not)

  16. #17 godlessgoat
    January 17, 2010

    These people must have way too much time on their hands to make this sort of thing. Either that or reaally bored.
    If it was at least half decent I could see the point, but they are always pretty much drop dead boring.

  17. #18 Killer Bud
    January 17, 2010

    When I was 12 I had a close encounter with what I thought was a sasquatch. I almost ran it over on my 10 speed bicycle on my way to the bus stop around 6:00AM in the morning.
    This was almost 20 years ago, and to this day I do not know what I saw, but I definitely saw something. I wish I could go back in time and have a do over, I was such a chickenshit, I sped away scared for my life. If I had the hindsight I would of followed it and tried looking for evidence. Nowadays it just a good story for people to laugh at.

    I read somewhere that Jane Goodall believes in the existence of bigfoot. Its kind of interesting that someone as prominent as her would go out on a limb like that and speculate the possibility of their existence.

    Its hard to imagine that a species like this would exist alongside homosapiens without anyone finding any fossils whatsoever. Until I see real evidence I am going to assume it is nothing more than cryptozoology and lore.

  18. #19 Knockgoats
    January 17, 2010

    There’s another clue in the intro: this was shot just north of “Green Horn, Oregon”. I assume there is such a place, but together with “John E. Walker”, at least the guy is signalling pretty plainly that this is a hoax! Crap footage, though.

  19. #20 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    First of all; Paul, is it that they’re all scams, or because you need them to be scams? Seeing what you want to see is not a trait exclusive to woo addicts.

    BTW, there are people out there with names like “John E. Walker”. Check out the blog of one Zoe Ellen Brain (nee Alan E. Brain) some time.

    On the video itself, it stinks of scam. Another Blair Witch in my estimation. Just the way it’s put together. Shorts are unclear, and the editing is (deliberately) confusing. If the aim was to intrigue and confuse, Mr. Walker succeeded. But if your aim is to inform, then Mr. Walker failed spectacularly.

    For David @ #7

    Agree. Hoaxers would have better luck if they just studied the sparse authentic footage. The Patterson/Gimlin film for example. One thing people keep missing is that Patty does not have a gorilla face. Patty has a very human face. May be the source of the legend that Patty was a man in a suit. (That face might be the source of the legend that sasquatch are descended from neanderthals, though cranial morphology argues against it.)

    Whenever the sasquatch/human split occurred, it may have occurred at a time when the basic human face had evolved, which would make the sasquatch a descendent of Australopithecines, or even an early Homo. Though I don’t think sasquatch is a member of the genus Homo, but belongs to a new, related genus that split off from Homo very early in our genus’ history if it is not an Australopithecine.

    But don’t people say that sasquatch is a modern Giganthropithecus? Doesn’t fit. Giganthropithecus goes back a lot longer than Homo or Australopithecus, and is considered ancestral to Gorilla. The sasquatch-Giganthopithecus connection may be a link to the the “gorilla face” legend prevalent in the believer community. If sasquatch are descended from Giganthropithecus, of course they’re going to have a gorilla face.

    For My Loyal Readers :D

    I know PZ is having fun with me. No biggy. As long as he’s amused, and he has a topic for this iteration of the Thread Unending. From what I’ve seen, the typical woo addict suffers from a total lack of a sense of humor. God take my life if I ever lose my sense of humor; it’s the only thing that makes my depression tolerable.

    So a few guidelines for fake bigfoot footage…

    Does the subject have a gorilla like face?

    Does the subject move like somebody in a costume?

    Are the body proportions human. Do the limbs appear to have the proportions of human limbs?

    Does the subject walk like a human? Does it stride? Patty’s walk is not a human stride, but has been compared by some as looking like what Australopithecines may have walked. (Note that while we can emulate Patty’s walk, it’s not natural to us and is fatiguing.)

    Is the subject playing to the camera? Are his behaviors studied? Is he putting on a performance? Patty acts naturally, completely naturally through out the film. She shows no indication she as any idea as to what a camera is, or what a rifle is. She is responding to the two humans, and she don’t like them. Could it be acting? As the Mel Brooks stand-in said to the Errol Flynn stand-in in the movie My Favorite Year, “Nobody’s that good an actor!”

    When you’re performing for stage or film, your behavior is studied, rehearsed. Even Harrison Ford couldn’t avoid performing when he played an usher on an older film he appeared in, the one where studio executives complained his acting was too natural.

    The footage above stinks of fraud, but that does not in and of itself invalidates any other sasquatch footage. Each film or video stands on its own merits or lack thereof.

    Just remember, you are not immune to seeing things as you would like them to be.

  20. #21 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    Correction: #20

    Oops, that should be Glenn @#7. Sometimes my memory retrieval system mishandles the file system.

  21. #22 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    Carlie, 14

    That was no sasquatch, that was a linebacker.

  22. #23 windy
    January 17, 2010

    Do you people think thread [...] grows on trees or something?

    Sure, or how else do you explain this photo of a woman harvesting thread? It’s at least as convincing as the bigfoot video!

    But I would like to know if this thread is fair trade and ecologically sustainable? Or are we heading towards “Peak Thread”?

  23. #24 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    Killer Bud, #18

    When you consider how unlikely fossilization is, what’s amazing is that we find any fossils at all. goes to show you how much live our world has seen.

    Then there’s the fact we’ve been looking in the wrong places for sasquatch fossils. Rapidly eroding locations like mountains really aren’t the places. Swamps and flatlands on the other hand have problems with rapid decaying. Stream beds where the current suddenly slows are better spots to look, but as far as I know nobody’s looking there. Taking a course on fossil hunting would do sasquatch hunters a lot of good.

  24. #25 Blind Squirrel FCD
    January 17, 2010

    windy, she is harvesting spaghetti.

    BS

  25. #26 recovering catholic
    January 17, 2010

    PZ, what are your criteria for considering a particular thread “filled”?

  26. #27 glenister_m
    January 17, 2010

    I remember stopping by a place while driving from Seattle down to see Mt. St. Helen’s. The cafe or restaurant had a ‘Bigfoot’ museum with some plaster casts of feet, etc. All I could think of while I looked at them was ‘what a load of b.s.’ considering how bad and fake looking they were. I was a kid when the bigfoot craze/patterson film came out and so I really believed/hoped it existed at that time, but I’m a lot more skeptical now. Admittedly it would be great if it does exist, but some actual evidence would be nice eg. fur/hair we could do a DNA test off of.

    I agree that if I had a camera rolling if I saw one, that I could not lower my arm/camera while I ran after it.

    Which reminds me of a really bad B movie (was in the World’s Worst Film Festival years ago) called ‘Shriek of the Mutilated’. The plot concerns a professor and some grad students searching for the abominable snowman in Canada (!!!???), but it turns out the professor belongs to a cannibal cult and the students were being brought for dinner…

  27. #28 DLC
    January 17, 2010

    It’s not the Vans I mind, it’s the Vons.
    Van Schuyler, say, vs Von Manteuffel.

  28. #29 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    glenister M., #27

    What do you know of footprints and forensics? I know very little and I would have trouble separating the fakes from the authentic, but not knowing the difference does not make all the samples fake. Nor would it make all the samples authentic.

  29. #30 Rorschach
    January 17, 2010

    God, PZ, did you have to do that ? Now MM will be all over this thread for days to come…..

  30. #31 Owlmirror
    January 17, 2010

    When I copy something to the clipboard, I almost feel it in my right hand till I paste it, or even longer

    Nerd synaesthesia FTW!

    The Thread has grown past this point, but I just wanted to point out that some text editors have HTML syntax higlighting, and some even do HTML syntax spellchecking, such that misspelled tags show up in red.

    <blokcquote>

    <blockqutoe>

    <blockquote>

    This will not fix all blockquote failures, but it might help somewhat, at least.

    I use Sc1, a tiny 500K editor, from here:

    http://www.scintilla.org/SciTEDownload.html

    Which is a win32 app, but it also runs under wine, which runs under MacOSX and Linux.

  31. #32 Blind Squirrel FCD
    January 17, 2010
    turns out the professor belongs to a cannibal cult and the students were being brought for dinner…

    Sounds as plausible as the notion that a large ape could maintain a viable population on the north American continent with out detection.

    BS

  32. #33 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    DLC, #28

    It’s really very simple, van is Dutch for von, while von is German for van.

    Vons, on the other hand, is a southern California grocery chain infamous for their (comparatively) high prices and their chintzy promotions.

  33. #34 386sx for a hundred, Alex!!
    January 17, 2010

    Fox News token priest mascot who looks waaaay tooo much like the evil priest dude from Angels & Demons

    http://www.atheistmedia.com/2010/01/father-knows-best-how-to-dodge-good.html

    I’m not sure if those answers were made up on the spot or if they were just your typical standard theology. It’s hard to tell the difference! I’m not kidding!

  34. #35 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    BS, #32

    Things don’t happen because they should, things happen because they do.

    Then you have the fact that some people overestimate human wonderfulness and the depth and breadth of human knowledge. There are things we know that aint so, and things we say we know we really don’t.

    And don’t confuse visiting a location with knowing it.

  35. #36 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    Does the horde never sleep?

    The horde is legion, the legion is made up of cats.

  36. #37 Mr T
    January 17, 2010

    Here’s a touching tribute from our friends, Tenacious D: Sasquatch

  37. #38 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    #36, Blockquote Fail!

    Does the horde never sleep?

    The horde is legion, the legion is made up of cats.

  38. #39 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    On a personal note, I’m now waiting for the backed up data on my external harddrive to copy to my new internal harddrive. An 12 hour marathon in case you’re wondering.

    You remember when 800 megahertz was blazing fast?

    The donation of a 2 gigahertz mactel iMac would be eagerly accepted. :) I may be able to pay for shipping.

  39. #40 Mr T
    January 17, 2010

    whoops, here’s the version of the video I wanted, including all that fine acting at the beginning and end.

    Sasquatch

  40. #41 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    More personal news…

    The San Diego Chargers lost. They lost because the New York Jets took advantage of the Chargers’ tendency to slack off and not take the game seriously, until the other team reminds them that this game is serious. The Jets did what the Chargers’ regular season opponents didn’t do, refuse to give the Chargers an opportunity to correct their mistakes.

    See how erroneous assumptions can come back to bite you on your ass?

  41. #42 MikeTheInfidel
    January 17, 2010

    mythusmage, I love it. Apparently, absence of evidence is evidence that it’s real.

  42. #43 Miki Z
    January 17, 2010

    Absence of evidence doesn’t mean it isn’t.

    I mean, look how long it took for proof. But proof is here. You may say it’s different, but just because some of the small details were wrong… there are people in every field who aren’t up on the current state of the field, or who are in it for their own gain. But now, everyone will have to stop laughing. Iridology has been vindicated:
    An eye test for Alzheimers (please to kindly ignore any differences between this and discredited claims of iridology, as No True Iridologist would make those claims).

  43. #44 timrowledge
    January 17, 2010

    Do you people think thread [...] grows on trees or something? Of course not – it grows on the Red Planet and travels across space in order to invade our world. Why else do we have Dragons? Really; the youth of today just don’t pay attention to their lessons.

  44. #45 AnneH
    January 17, 2010

    Windy @23,
    Thanks for reminding me of the BBC Swiss Spaghetti Harvest April Fools hoax – one of the best filmed hoaxes ever. John E. Walker and his ilk could learn a thing or two about creating a convincing filmed hoax from this:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=27ugSKW4-QQ

  45. #46 'Tis Himself, OM
    January 17, 2010

    Windy #23

    Sure, or how else do you explain this photo of a woman harvesting thread?

    As Blind Squirrel FCD so accurately points out, that woman is harvesting spaghetti. Here’s a somewhat better picture of a girl picking the fruit of the spaghetti tree. It looks like a particularly good crop, probably due to a mild winter and a low infestation of the spaghetti weevil.

  46. #47 Lunshbox
    January 17, 2010

    Hmm. I was thinking of the bigfoot from the beef jerky commercials that seem to play endlessly.

  47. #48 Blind Squirrel FCD
    January 17, 2010

    386sx for a hundred, Alex!!
    Did you notice that the female robot was placed in the kitchen? Probably a coincidence…
    And talk about dime store theology! Free will in heaven, but we won’t want to use it for evil.

    BS

  48. #49 timrowledge
    January 17, 2010

    Oh for goodness’ sake. Some sort of blockquote fail

    Do you people think thread [...] grows on trees or something?

    Any fule kno that it grows on the Red Planet and travels to our world through the vasty reaches of space. Why else do we have Dragons?

  49. #50 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 17, 2010

    That’s not bigfoot. It’s my brother Ed walking around naked again. Just ignore him.

  50. #51 Owlmirror
    January 17, 2010

    Still catching up on old(er) topics:

    Lynna, condolences on the brain thing. Heal well!

  51. #52 Mr T
    January 17, 2010

    Quoth Fr. Johnathan Morris (from 386sx @ #34):

    If I am so united to God in Heaven, I am not going to be able to choose evil and destruction and Hell. Yes, there is free will, but if I am that united to God, I am so happy I don’t want anything else.

    This doesn’t answer anything. Why would a powerful and loving God have ever created us to be “disunited” from it? And where the fuck do they get off thinking they can be “united” with the supposed creator of the fucking universe? Why would there ever be “evil” or suffering at all?

    This is the kind of crap that may seem like a harmless delusion for some. For others like Pat Robertson, it’s an excuse to condemn Haitians when their island is destroyed by an earthquake. Obviously it wasn’t an all-powerful God who did that, it was because their evil free wills have sided with the fucking devil. It’s all so stupid that I want to vomit on small woodland creatures.

  52. #53 386sx for a hundred, Alex!!
    January 17, 2010

    Blind Squirrel FCD #48 And talk about dime store theology! Free will in heaven, but we won’t want to use it for evil.

    Yeah, and besides, that didn’t work out too well for Satan and the other rebel angels. They were pretty freakin close to God too.

  53. #54 Mr T
    January 17, 2010

    Besides omnipotence, omnibenevolence, and omniscience, it would also be inconsistent with a belief in God’s omnipresence.

  54. #55 386sx for a hundred, Alex!!
    January 17, 2010

    Besides omnipotence, omnibenevolence, and omniscience, it would also be inconsistent with a belief in God’s omnipresence.

    True, but there’s probably a smug answer for it though. The easier the refutation, the smugger the answer. :P

  55. #56 386sx for a hundred, Alex!!
    January 17, 2010

    First law of apologetics: The easier and more obvious the refutation of a theological point, the smugger and more obtuse the theological counter-refutation.

  56. #57 windy
    January 17, 2010

    As Blind Squirrel FCD so accurately points out, that woman is harvesting spaghetti.

    way to spoil a joke, guys…

  57. #58 Lynna, OM
    January 17, 2010

    Owlmirror and other friends, thanks for the good wishes. Per advice from John Morales, I am still kicking, and avoiding kicking the bucket.

    Now to the Bigfoot issue. As is all too often the case when it comes to being truly strange, our craziest contestant for Bigfoot Freak is a mormon. We’ve talked about this guy, Meldrum, on other threads. I reintroduce him here with his “EVALUATION OF ALLEGED SASQUATCH FOOTPRINTS AND THEIR INFERRED FUNCTIONAL MORPHOLOGY”. This paper is very sciency. Enjoy.

  58. #59 Sven DiMilo
    January 17, 2010

    Thread history update.
    Blogospherical Science.
    Bold prediction.

  59. #60 386sx for a hundred, Alex!!
    January 17, 2010

    Jeepers Lynna OM hope you’re feeling okay dude.

  60. #61 Mr T
    January 17, 2010

    I don’t think I have the stomach to find out how Rule 34 applies to apologetics….

  61. #62 AJ Milne
    January 17, 2010

    Well, I dunno about Bigfoot, but the skunk ape is totally for real, I assure you…

    And I’ll be riding mine at Whistler-Blackcomb in just six more short days–not that I’m counting.

  62. #63 Standard curve
    January 17, 2010

    If you follow the link to the homepage you can see that Johnny Walker also got a hair sample… I’m guessing polyester.

  63. #64 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    Mike, #42

    Why the need to deny Bigfoot? Were you ordered to? Is it because you disagreed with His message of peace and love in favor of violent revolution? Did you deny Him three times before the cock crowed?

    Peeps, back in the previous thread episode somebody (I forget who) pointed out that people with Aspergers are peer pressure resistent. I have Aspergers, of course I’m going to resist your pressure. Especially when I just don’t see you providing valid evidence to support your claims, only assertions and declarations.

    Keep this fact in mind, I’m not doing this, presenting these arguments, to convince you, I’m doing this to make you doubt your self-assurance. For absolute assurance is the enemy of science. For science is not about confirming your beliefs, science is about learning things you didn’t know before and learning better about things you think you know.

    Some years back an East Coast US university ran an experiment to see how fast cats learned. Cats were placed in cages with the cage doors modified so jostling a bar inside the cage would open it. Then the students started to observe.

    What they observed was the subject cats weaving back and forth and rubbing against things. On some point they would rub against the bar and the cage door would open. The routine didn’t vary.

    After a few months of observation they concluded that they had no idea what was going on. One possibility raised was that the cats were engaging in some sort of arcane ritual. That was a popular hypothesis in the media.

    Then a West Coast US university decided to replicate the experiment. In their observations they saw the same behaviors, with different cats, as their eastern colleagues.

    Then a grad student noticed something. The cats only engaged in their strange behavior when they knew humans were around. When cats didn’t know humans were around they tended to sleep.

    So the researchers changed things. They removed the interior bars so the cats couldn’t open the cage doors. The cats continued to weave and rub when humans were present. Then they removed the cage doors, and the cats continued to weave and rub whenever a human appeared. Finally, they got rid of the cages and — don’t get ahead of me … That’s right, they continued to weave and rub upon the appearance of a human. The researchers in this running of the experiment concluded that the most likely interpretation of their observations is that weaving and rubbing is how cats say hello to humans.

    What’s the connection with Sasquatch? The researchers at both experiments recounted above made no firm conclusions. In Either case they made their best guess based on what they had observed, the later group based on additional observations they made after a crucial observation was made by one of the researchers.

    My best guess, based on the viewing of the Patterson/Gimli film, is that the subject is a sasquatch. An adult female sasquatch with a bad, possibly painful, leg injury. My best guess after watching the video PZ embedded above, is that Mr. Walker is a conniving bastard with a deep contempt for people as a whole.

    The only thing an absence of evidence shows is that you have no evidence. That is all it shows. It does not show that a proposition must be true because there is no evidence for or against it, only that you have no evidence.

  64. #65 rndm_arshl
    January 17, 2010

    MM et al.,
    Please provide the predictions of your hypotheses concerning BF and then provide the evidence in support of those predictions. So far, every bit of evidence brought forth by BF hunters to support their claims has failed to support the hypothesis that BF exists. Otherwise, be happy to be taken as a joke because that is the best that you can aspire to be.

    BFF — Big Foot Forever!!!!

  65. #66 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    Correction, #64

    The Patterson/Gimli film is said to show a troll walking about, all unpretrified, in broad daylight. Not to be compared with the Patterson/Gimlin film showing a sasquatch.

  66. #67 Lynna, OM
    January 17, 2010

    Here’s a video produced by Professor Meldrum: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kHrn4nru6iY

    Scientific American story about Meldrum’s theories:
    http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=bigfoot-anatomy&page=2

    Reviews of Meldrum’s book:
    http://www.cryptomundo.com/bigfoot-report/sas-lms-review1/
    excerpt:

    Meldrum?s expertise, according to the books? forward, is ?human locomotor adaptations;? he is certainly qualified to speak about anatomy, but how that applies to Bigfoot ? an animal never proven to exist ? is unclear. Since we have no Bigfoot body for Meldrum to apply his real-world expertise to, he is reduced to being an armchair analyst for the Zapruder film of Bigfootery, the famous film shot in 1967 by Roger Patterson. The problem for Bigfoot proponents is that the film is an evidentiary dead end. Like any number of other ambiguous photos, film, videos, and images, it is simply a pattern of colors on a two-dimensional medium and cannot yield a shred of hard evidence or conclusive information about Bigfoot.
         Meldrum often fails to seriously consider alternative explanations, a serious scientific misstep. Throughout the book, he focuses on theories that support his position while ignoring (or giving short shrift to) competing skeptical theories.

  67. #68 Standard curve
    January 17, 2010

    home page… I meant his “blog” with exactly two entries, this being #2. #1 is “hello world.”

  68. #69 Pierce R. Butler
    January 17, 2010

    I have no idea where you’ll end up from there, of course.

    Like hell he doesn’t. Start with the three B’s…

  69. #70 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 17, 2010

    Oh horse shit. It’s my brother Ed. Similar video was taken of big foot swimming in Joe’s Lake and then mooning the Amtrak, it was Ed.

    Are any of you old enough to remember the big foot center in Oregon was run by a guy named Peter Burn? (That bit is true.)

  70. #71 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    #65

    My prediction? That we have a large, native bipedal ape living in North America. The best evidence I know of consists of the Patterson/Gimlin film shot in 1967 showing a sasquatch walking along a dry creek bed. I have not seen any solid evidence showing that that film is a hoax.

    Showing that A is a hoax does not show that B is a hoax.

  71. #72 Creature of the Universe
    January 17, 2010

    …once we were lovers (bigfoot and I)

  72. #73 windy
    January 17, 2010
  73. #74 MikeTheInfidel
    January 17, 2010

    “I have not seen any solid evidence showing that that film is a hoax.”

    As soon as you provide any evidence that it was a real animal and NOT a hoax, we’ll get to work on it.

  74. #75 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    Lyanna, #67

    So the reviewer you got the excerpt from doesn’t believe in photographic evidence. By his reasoning the numerous photos we’ve taken on deep ocean expeditions tell us nothing about the subjects photographed, and so zoology has a number of phony species listed.

    Indeed, all the photographic evidence we’ve gained over the years regarding the presence of recognized species and their behavior have to be discarded, because photographs, video, and film are evidence of nothing.

    You get right down to it, if the reviewer is right, we have no reliable evidence that PZ Myers even exists. All we have is a picture purporting to show PZ Myers, and as the author says, “[I]t is simply a pattern of colors on a two-dimensional medium and cannot yield a shred of hard evidence or conclusive information about Bigfoot.”

  75. #76 RickR
    January 17, 2010

    “…once we were lovers (bigfoot and I)”

    Same here. I met him in a Bear bar sometime around 1996. We dated a couple of times, then he suddenly stated that he wanted to move in. I felt kinda sorry for him, so I agreed. Dude didn’t have many friends.
    He seemed nice at first. But that shit-ass broke more of my dishes than the Loma-Prieta earthquake. When he totalled my car (after borrowing it without asking me) joyriding around Big Sur, I’d had enough and called it quits.

    Sometimes I miss him. Sometimes.

  76. #77 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    Patricia, #70

    I bet he went through razors at a blazing speed.

  77. #78 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    #74

    Sorry Mike, butyou made the claim that the film is a hoax, providing no evidence that it is. You do provide a fine example of “dodging the issue”, that I will give to you.

    You asked me for the best evidence I can find demonstrating the existence of sasquatch. I pointed to that evidence. It’s now your job to show that the Patterson/Gimlin film is a hoax, and not with unsupported claims and assertions. That is how science works; I present a claim, you ask for evidence. I provide that evidence, you prove that evidence false. Want to continue this game of “Moving the Goal Posts?”

  78. #79 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    Gentles all, it is not my goal to convince you, it is my goal to make you doubt your conclusions.

  79. #80 Lynna, OM
    January 17, 2010

    Jeepers Lynna OM hope you’re feeling okay dude.

    I am surprisingly tired, but otherwise apparently functioning near normal. I attribute the fatigue to the fact that the brain is a very demanding organ, and when it wants time off for repairs, it demands sleep.

    I played a game of Scrabble with my daughter today as a sort of test. We played through the facebook version of the game. I put up a score of 460, which is good playing against my daughter, as she is very intelligent and a great player.

    The craving for oranges is still hanging in there. I figure it’s okay to feed that craving, as it seems harmless. It’s a sign though that there are still some feckin’ wires crossed somewhere.

  80. #81 MikeTheInfidel
    January 17, 2010

    Are you really being serious here? Your one bit of evidence is a film. Everything else is extrapolated from that. The burden of proof is on you to show that what was seen in the video is representative of what is actually real.

    What you’re doing is the exactly the same as a fundie saying that I have to disprove their god.

    That is how science works; I present a claim, you ask for evidence. I provide that evidence, you prove that evidence false.

    You haven’t provided any evidence. You’ve asserted that this film is evidence of a creature that has no other evidence for its existence! Why on earth should we conclude, upon seeing this film, that it’s an actual animal? Support your claims!

  81. #82 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    Observation:

    It is very easy to see the creationist in others, it is very hard to see the creationist in you.

    (Cue irate response from John Morales in 5, 4, 3…)

  82. #83 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 17, 2010

    we have no reliable evidence that PZ Myers even exists

    Humm, sightings of the beast in the wilds of a creation museum don’t count? His lovely offspring and trophy wife with solid gold taste in socks don’t count?

    I know Mythusmage, call Bill Donahue at the Catholic League, he can tell you all about PZ.

  83. #84 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 17, 2010

    MM, until you show hard physical evidence for sasqauatch, like a body, or at least turds with DNA, you will not be believed. There is no reason to, as your evidence does not rise to the level required for serious scientists. That is what several of us are telling you. So drop your BF idiocy until that evidence is available. That will help you maintain credibility. Which you lose with every weak evidenced bigfoot post. Welcome to science, where real hard evidence rules.

  84. #85 MikeTheInfidel
    January 17, 2010

    Gentles all, it is not my goal to convince you, it is my goal to make you doubt your conclusions.

    Then quit pretending that you have any interest in logical argument or scientific inquiry, because you clearly don’t. You want to present us with a video and then have us say “Oh, wow, maybe it’s real after all.”

    Sorry. No. Science operates on the NULL HYPOTHESIS. In this case, that would be “This is not a real animal.” You would then provide a collection of evidence to either confirm or refute that hypothesis. You have done no such thing. This is not scientific, so stop pretending it is. It’s anomaly hunting and nothing more.

  85. #86 RickR
    January 17, 2010

    “Gentles all, it is not my goal to convince you, it is my goal to make you doubt your conclusions.”

    Then you are using the most asinine example possible.

  86. #87 MikeTheInfidel
    January 17, 2010

    Observation:

    It is very easy to see the creationist in others, it is very hard to see the creationist in you.

    Observation: mythusmage has no sense of irony.

  87. #88 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    #81

    No Mike, what you have demonstrated is the need for sasquatch to be a lie. I offer the Patterson/Gimlin film as is because it is the best bit of evidence I can find. You claim it must be a hoax, and the only reason I can see for your claim is because you have problems with the idea of sasquatch and the presence of such an animal in North America.

    Frankly sir, it doesn’t really matter what I present in the way of evidence, because you show no sign you’d would even give it due consideration. I could present you with a fucking corpse, and you would call it false.

    You just can’t bring yourself to doubt what you know. That is the tragedy here.

  88. #89 Lynna, OM
    January 17, 2010

    Patricia @50: I thought maybe it was Floyd Rubber.

  89. #90 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 17, 2010

    Errr…now Nerd you may be being hasty.

    MM could be proof that there are sasquatch turds being used for brains. Or at least the copralites of some pre-jebus creature.

  90. #91 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 17, 2010

    the only reason I can see for your claim is because you have problems with the idea of sasquatch and the presence of such an animal in North America.

    MM, film can be easily faked. Which is why it isn’t considered good evidence except for carefully controlled video. This is why your films are not sufficient evidence. As I said, a skeleton, body, or skat would be good hard physical evidence. Until then, the soft evidence is insufficient.

  91. #92 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    #81

    How am I asking you to disprove your god? What I’m asking for is evidence, solid evidence, that the Patterson/Gimlin film, is a hoax. Note that small word, that word that gave former President Bill Clinton such trouble, “is”. I’m asking you to prove a positive, I’m asking you to prove the Patterson/Gimlin film a fraud. If you can’t prove a positive, then science is not the career for you.

    So let’s go over this again; you’re saying the Patterson/Gimlin film is a hoax. I’m asking your for proof that it is. Stop your dancing, collect that evidence, and get it verified. Or dance on and demonstrate your words have no backing.

  92. #93 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 17, 2010

    Lynna – No, it’s my brother Ed. He’s well known for sending ladies shrieking from the frozen food department of the supermarket when he bends over the burrito section.

  93. #94 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 17, 2010

    What I’m asking for is evidence, solid evidence, that the Patterson/Gimlin film, is a hoax.

    You have this ass backwards. It is a hoax until proven otherwise. And no corroborating evidence has been forthcoming, like a body or skeleton. That is how science works. And will continue to work.

  94. #95 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 17, 2010

    Disprove my gods MM. I worship the god of bacon, Moccus, and the celestial Jack Ass, Mullo.

  95. #96 Mr T
    January 17, 2010

    mythus magee:

    it is not my goal to convince you, it is my goal to make you doubt your conclusions.

    I assume that the plural “conclusions” here refers to more than just Sasquatch-related ones, so would you please expand on this a bit?

    How do you know what my conclusions are, and what reason have you given to doubt them?

    It’s fine if you don’t have a good answer, but then perhaps it shouldn’t be your goal.

  96. #97 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    Nerd, #91

    Does the fact a film can be faked mean all films are faked? More specifically, does it mean the Patterson/Gimlin film is faked? Or is it more that you are troubled by the mere possibility there is a large non-human primate native to North America?

    Is the film a hoax and where is your evidence showing that it is? I’m not asking you to disprove your god, I’m asking you to prove your claim. Unlike Mike the Infidel I see no reason to doubt your ability to give it the good old college try.

  97. #98 A. Noyd
    January 17, 2010

    mythusmage (#79)

    Gentles all, it is not my goal to convince you, it is my goal to make you doubt your conclusions.

    One and the same. No one’s being unreasonable about their standards of evidence other than you.

    ~*~*~*~*~*~*~

    Lynna (#80)

    The craving for oranges is still hanging in there. I figure it’s okay to feed that craving, as it seems harmless.

    I’d mail you my neighbors if I could. They use some sort of orange-scented cleanser that comes through the ventilation system in the bathroom and makes that side of my apartment absolutely reek of oranges for days. (Though, if I’m granting myself unlikely abilities, I might as well just wish you all better!)

  98. #99 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 17, 2010

    when he bends over in the burrito section.

    Sheesh!

  99. #100 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    Patricia, #95

    Prove the Patterson/Gimlin film a hoax.

  100. #101 MikeTheInfidel
    January 17, 2010

    the only reason I can see for your claim is because you have problems with the idea of sasquatch and the presence of such an animal in North America.

    Here, let me rewrite that as a creationist claim:

    the only reason I can see for your claim is because you have problems with the idea of God and the presence of such a being in reality.

    Do you REALLY not understand that the reason I doubt it is because you haven’t given any evidence?

    A video is not evidence. A video is the beginning of an investigation. So far, the investigation has turned up absolutely no evidence supporting the hypothesis that the video is of an actual, legitimate unknown animal. The null hypothesis – that it is not a real animal – has not been refuted, or even had doubt cast upon it!

  101. #102 MikeTheInfidel
    January 17, 2010

    Oh, for fuck’s sake!

    Prove the Patterson/Gimlin film a hoax.

    Here, let me rewrite that as a creationist argument:

    Prove that God isn’t real.

    HELLOOOOO! Earth to MM! You’ve made an extraordinary claim. A videotape is NOT extraordinary evidence. Get to work, or stop trolling!

  102. #103 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 17, 2010

    MM at #100 – You can’t be serious. It’s already been proved a hoax and several TV shows, and newspapers have covered it.

    I’ve been to the now gone Bigfoot Center in Oregon run by Peter Burn and the “evidence” was laughable bullshit, just like your hoax of a god.

  103. #104 RickR
    January 17, 2010

    Mythusmage, if all you’re doing is mental masturbation, you really should pick a better topic.
    How about UFOs? A lot more people have claimed to see them, and there are a lot more alleged photos floating around. And the lack of hard evidence of visitation by a technologically advanced species would be a somewhat easier to justify, since they can have any abilities you want- memory wipes, rays that destroy evidence of landing sites, hell, pretty much anything.
    But a population of man-apes living in the Pacific Northwest (not at all a remote unpopulated area) that stringently avoids detection, and removes all sign of its existence for no reason other than to befuddle curious humans is a ridiculous claim, to put it mildly.
    Forget the animals themselves. Where are their dwellings? Where are the bones of their dead? And even the most skittish of species excretes.

    In short, bring me some shit, and I’ll at least begin to take you seriously.

  104. #105 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    Nerd, #91

    Additional: Sometimes photographic evidence is all you have to go by. When all you have is photographic evidence, then you look for additional evidence. You don’t de facto decide the photography is faked and refuse to look for anything that might confirm or refute it. That is what I keep hearing here, “It must be fake, so there’s no reason to go looking for evidence supporting it or disproving it.”

    I don’t have the resources, but I can’t be the only one with a functioning pair of arms. You want to go looking, don’t let me stop you.

  105. #106 MikeTheInfidel
    January 17, 2010

    Don’t forget, it’s a semi-invisible psychic bigfoot. That’s why nobody sees the bodies and it knows when people are coming. Its only time of weakness is when it’s walking off to use the restroom, as was the case in this video and the Patterson/Gimlin film!

    I dare mythusmage to prove that I’m wrong. After all, I’ve made a claim and my talking about it should be construed as evidence in support of the claim. Now you have to prove that I’m lying!

    [/brokenlogic]

  106. #107 MikeTheInfidel
    January 17, 2010

    You don’t de facto decide the photography is faked and refuse to look for anything that might confirm or refute it.

    Occam’s Razor alone is enough to make that the default conclusion. Which is more likely: that a reproductive population of bipedal apes inhabits North America and is capable of hiding any actual traces of its existence beyond fuzzy, distant video tapings, or that it’s a prank?

    That is what I keep hearing here, “It must be fake, so there’s no reason to go looking for evidence supporting it or disproving it.”

    Oh, bullshit. You just heard the opposite from me.

    A video is not evidence. A video is the beginning of an investigation. So far, the investigation has turned up absolutely no evidence supporting the hypothesis that the video is of an actual, legitimate unknown animal.

  107. #108 RickR
    January 17, 2010

    Well, I saw this movie once where a guy was taking video at his friend’s going-away party, and a giant monster attacked the city!!

    Prove it’s a hoax!

  108. #109 MikeTheInfidel
    January 17, 2010

    I also love your blatant false dichotomy: You claim that I have a problem with the idea of Bigfoot based on the fact that I think the Patterson/Gimli film is a hoax.

    Nice try, but “This film is real” and “Bigfoot is fake” is not a dichotomy. There very well may be a sasquatch, but we have no reason whatsoever to believe that this is a film of it.

  109. #110 Feynmaniac
    January 17, 2010

    Bigfoot debate? I think the eternal thread has jumped the shark.

  110. #111 Sven DiMilo
    January 17, 2010

    Alan K:
    I cannot prove that the Patterson film is a hoax. (Here‘s the best version btw.)

    I myself have questions about the biped seen in the Patterson film. (So does Darren Naish).

    OK?
    Nevertheless, as evidence for the existence of a large bipedal primate in the forests of northwestern North America, it’s pretty crappy evidence.

    So it’s still extremely unlikely.
    More better evidence and I’ll believe.

  111. #112 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    #101

    I have, Mike the Infidel, I have pointed you to the best evidence I can find. It is you who keeps rejecting it, making no effort to demonstrate it is false. I ask you to prove a positive, you keep refusing to. Truly, if the film is a hoax the evidence showing the hoax is out there. Why is it so hard to find?

    Or do you refuse to look because you fear what you would find? Are you afraid you’ll learn that the Patterson/Gimlin film shows the real thing, and your dearly held belief regarding sasquatch is wrong.

    All I’m hearing from you is denial, and the refusal to give what evidence I can present an honest appraisal. Fuck God and fuck Him with a spiky gherkin, show me the Patterson/Gimlin film is a lie.

    Your message is loud and clear, the sasquatch can’t be real because if it is real then you are wrong. It is being wrong that bothers you and causes you such distress. Continue demonstrating this and know you can do little to further degrade my opinion of you.

  112. #113 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 17, 2010

    We don’t give a fiddlers fuck what your opinion of us is.

  113. #114 RickR
    January 17, 2010

    Mythusmage doesn’t ever seem to take into account the motive one would have for wanting to fake such a thing. Publicity and attention, and I’m sure some $$$ came his way.

    But since he’s blind to people’s motives, I’ve got a really first rate piece of Arizona beach front property I’d like to show him….

  114. #115 RickR
    January 17, 2010

    “Publicity and attention, and I’m sure some $$$ came his (Patterson’s) way.

  115. #116 Sven DiMilo
    January 17, 2010

    You know what? I’m going to tell you something, Alan K: your behavior on this thread has finally pushed you into my killfile. The plate-tectonics bullshit was bad enough, but yeesh, dude. I do not care whether the reason is Asperger’s or obtuse idiocy; I no longer care to read anything you write on the internet.
    From now on (unless I peek), here is what you are to me:

    Comment by mythusmage blocked. [unkill]?[show comment]

  116. #117 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 17, 2010

    MM – Prove to us that we are wrong. I will be the first one to drop to my knees and kiss gawds ass if you can produce him.

  117. #118 MikeTheInfidel
    January 17, 2010

    Your message is loud and clear, the sasquatch can’t be real because if it is real then you are wrong.

    Amazing. You’ve just proved your illiteracy twice on the same page. First, you claim that I think the investigation stops at the video; then, you claim that I have a “dearly held belief” that sasquatch can’t be real. This despite the fact that I just said:

    There very well may be a sasquatch, but we have no reason whatsoever to believe that this is a film of it.

    Could you possibly be any more daft or dishonest?

  118. #119 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 17, 2010

    Sometimes photographic evidence is all you have to go by.

    MM, you don’t get it, but then, you aren’t a scientist. Film evidence of deep sea critters may be the only evidence, due to lack of other mean to detect the critters. But then, the film has to be handled under forensic conditions to make sure fraud doesn’t occur. The problem you have is that the pacific northwest forests, while very sparsely populated, is somewhat trafficked. By hunters, hikers, fishermen, trappers, loggers, and even a few scientists. The fact that no bodies, skeletons, or unknown skat has been reported speaks volumes. And as I scientist, I must listen to the lack of hard evidence. So, you can believe what you want from possible hoaxed films. I will continue to require a body or some skat with DNA to confirm said creature. That is how science, not credulity, works. So, you don’t do yourself any favors for later ideas by continually pressing this weak and possibly hoaxed evidence. Wait for the real stuff.

  119. #120 Autumn
    January 17, 2010

    MM, the P/G film may be a bit of a sort of evidence, but it has been shown that there exists the possibility that it (the P/G film) may have been faked. When compounded with the total lack of remains and spoor, the overwhelming probability is that, despite the evidence of the P/G film, there is not an unknown biped living in North America.
    Whenever I talk about bigfoots, I have to mention the fact that, in the 80′s, a project was undertaken to tag as many Florida panthers as was possible in order to help save the species. There was only about 50 of the cats in existence, and they lived in the Everglades, as daunting and inpenetrable an environment as any on Earth. Regardless, nearly every single cat was found and tagged.
    How?
    Simple, because they exist, there is ample evidence of them.

  120. #121 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    #111

    Sven,

    I admit the film has problems. There are so many questions regarding how it came to be shot. But the claims of outright fraud lack proof themselves, and that is what I’d like to see. I’d like to see verified proof Patterson and Gimlin and whoever else conspired to fake footage of a sasquatch, carried it out, and have kept knowledge of this conspiracy secret ever since 1967. What’s that saying about keeping secrets?

    Is it weak evidence to prove anything? Of course. The best such evidence can do is provide leads to possibilities. Such as the possibility such an animal exists. I base my conclusions regarding sasquatch on that film because it is the best evidence we have, but there is better out there.

    Such as scat for instance. Google “bigfoot scat” and you’ll find pictures purporting to show sasquatch shit. Now google “bear scat” and compare those pictures with the reported bigfoot scat pictures. I just don’t see how one could confuse bear shit with sasquatch shit, unless one was obsessed in denying sasquatch.

    Further research is needed, and what disheartens me most is the insistence that the lack of evidence means we can’t go looking. That we must discourage others from looking themselves. It hurts me to see the denier in others, it hurts me even more to see the denier in those I thought otherwise sensible people.

    My goal is to make you, my friends, to doubt your verities. Isn’t that what science is all about? For science is not just about learning new facts, it is also about learning facts you already knew might be wrong.

  121. #122 Mr T
    January 17, 2010

    Mike, if sasquatches have restrooms, then I bet they would be larger than human restrooms. Where are they? Are they also invisible? Isn’t it also possible that they eat their own shit?

    In other news, I have four and a half testicles. I am fourth cousins with Elvis Presley, Benjamin Netanyanhu and Gary Coleman. For a small fee, I can commune with the spirits tell you your horoscope, read your palm, and realign your chakras. I am the only conscious being and all of you are merely figments of my imagination.

    Wheee! Making up false stuff is easy. Have fun disproving all of it, everybody!

  122. #123 MikeTheInfidel
    January 17, 2010

    My goal is to make you, my friends, to doubt your verities.

    No, your goal is to be completely ignorant of how science functions, and to tut-tut those of us who actually understand it and claim that we’re being closed-minded for not accepting flimsy evidence and for refusing to play your childish games.

    As Mr. Vonnegut so eloquently wrote, you can go take a flying fuck at a rolling donut.

  123. #124 Blind Squirrel FCD
    January 17, 2010

    Nerd: Scat is feces, skat is a card game.

    BS

  124. #125 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    #120

    Autumn,

    There is always a possibility that evidence has been faked. There is no absolute proof for anything. Sometimes the fake is easy to show, sometimes showing it is nigh impossible. And sometimes we learn that a conclusion derived from evidence is wrong and that there is a better conclusion to be derived.

  125. #126 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    Mike the Infidel,

    The key is easily within reach, anytime you wish you can open that cage door and walk outside. I hope you can do so soon and join me in the greater world.

  126. #127 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 17, 2010

    Such as the possibility such an animal exists.

    MM, we aren’t denying the possibility that sasquatch exists. We simply say that the total hard evidence to date is insufficient to conclusively prove the existence of sasquatch. You are attempting to use one of the proofs for god, where the sheer possibility of existence means it exists. That is a fallacious argument. Same for sasquatch. Parsimony requires non-existence be the true until existence is scientifically demonstrated. Which requires the body/skat. There is nothing here to stop a scientist from looking for sasquatch, but unless he already has tenure, that would be a foolish research project.

  127. #128 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 17, 2010

    My goal is to make you, my friends, to doubt your verities.

    OK, that is SO easy. Trot out gawd. We all know what gawd is, what he does, what he looks like, and where he lives, we have the Holy Babble to inform us.

    So show us. We are open minded. Trot the old boy out. Show us your facts that aren’t wrong.

  128. #129 MikeTheInfidel
    January 17, 2010

    The key is easily within reach, anytime you wish you can open that cage door and walk outside. I hope you can do so soon and join me in the greater world.

    OK, Morpheus, but you can still get fucked.

  129. #130 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 17, 2010

    Gawd dammit PZ these Dollar Store trolls taste awful.

  130. #131 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 17, 2010

    My goal is to make you, my friends, to doubt your verities. Isn’t that what science is all about?

    Sorry, you are wrong. Hard evidence is required to make us doubt the conclusions of science. What you offer is not hard evidence. It is soft, possibly hoaxed evidence. So science goes YAWN, because we have seen too many idjits like yourself who think that the new scientific discoveries are made by outsiders. That is good fiction, but bad science, as anyone who studied the history of science will tell you. The new paradigms are made by those trained in science, and make sure they apply those principals properly to the observations in question, including the hard evidence available. And they publish those findings and ideas in the appropriate journals. Which is why we find you aggravating. You are wrong, but can’t shut up.

  131. #132 speedweasel
    January 17, 2010

    How is it that mythusmage has thus far avoided my killfile?

    Has this guy always been a manic airhead determined to present as an uber-skeptic?

    Or is he/she in the throes of some kind of seizure and normal, cogent programming it set to resume shortly?

  132. #133 mythusmage
    January 17, 2010

    #127

    Nerd,

    As hard as this may be to accept, I agree with you. The sole bit of reliable evidence I’ve been able to find falls far short of conclusively proving sasquatch exist. My point is that the evidence we do have is the closest we can come to proving the existence of sasquatch, and that additional evidence is needed.

    Where is your proof that I am using a proof for the existence of God? I have no proof for God’s existence other than personal experience, and that in a milieu I have no proof exists either. What I offer is a proof that might be faked, but for which no proof has be presented showing that it is faked.

    What I’ve heard from some people on this subject is a need to deny their imperfection. Being wrong is hard for people to admit, as I demonstrated with the North Atlantic/North American kerfuffle a couple of thread episodes ago. Please, stop telling me I have to be wrong; show me that I am wrong and do it with evidence.

    After all, when you go looking for evidence demonstrating one thing, sometimes you’ll find evidence demonstrating just the opposite.

    To reiterate, you’re right; the total hard evidence to date is insufficient to conclusively prove the existence of sasquatch. What say we find what there is to find?

    BTW, thank you for adopting my usage of sasquatch (singular) and sasquatch (plural). Don’t know about you, but I find “sasquatches” such a clumsy construction.

    One more thing, you may call me “Mythus”. :)

  133. #134 flyonthewall
    January 17, 2010

    oh my are people still referring to that bigfoot footage on creek bed.

    The Patterson footage has been exposed as a hoax. The guy in the suit lives in Yakima, WA. He walks just like he did in the video.

  134. #135 A. Noyd
    January 17, 2010

    mythusmage (#121)

    what disheartens me most is the insistence that the lack of evidence means we can’t go looking

    Forget bigfoot. Give evidence that anyone is actually saying this. In fact, shut the fuck up till you manage that much. Thanks.

    ~*~*~*~*~*~

    MrT (#122)

    Isn’t it also possible that they eat their own shit?

    Well, gorillas do that and it still comes back out one end or the other eventually. Maybe I’ll mail mythusmage some for comparison to potential recycled bigfoot shit.

  135. #136 mythusmage
    January 18, 2010

    #128

    Patricia, if I trotted out God wouldn’t that convince you of His existence?

    I’m not doing this to convince you of anything, I’m doing this in the hopes of getting you to doubt what you are convinced of. For before you can accept new possibilities you must first doubt the truths you knew from before.

    Let me put it this way. Were this a creationist blog with a truly open policy concerning commenting and you a creationist (God forbid), I would be working to get you to doubt any conclusions you may have made regarding Genesis.

  136. #137 RickR
    January 18, 2010

    “There is no absolute proof for anything.”

    Oh, OK. Sophistry.

  137. #138 MikeTheInfidel
    January 18, 2010

    Skepticism and science aren’t about doubting the popular idea. Jesus Christ. Killfiled.

  138. #139 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 18, 2010

    Mythus, on the proof of god issue, you were pressing that the possible existence of sasquatch meant sasquatch existed. There is a proof of god (ontological?) that uses the very same logic.

    I expect to learn something new every time I open a Scientific American or American Scientist. Some of those ideas are different than they were when I was in school, but no problem. They have evidence. And what they say integrates into other knowledge that I have. What irritates me as a scientist are ignorant people deliberately trying to make us look like ideologues, which is what you are trying to do (upset the present ideas). If you want to look at things differently, do it right. Don’t put those ideas out here, but rather write up a scientific paper for publication and submit it. People who are afraid or find excuses not to do that are not worth listening to.

  139. #140 mythusmage
    January 18, 2010

    #135

    A Noyd,

    I can’t. Because I didn’t say it, I typed it.

  140. #141 mythusmage
    January 18, 2010

    #139

    Nerd,

    Ah, but testable evidence for sasquatch has been presented. Accepted or not, it has been presented. Last I heard nobody has presented testable evidence pointing to the existence of God. There is more to reality that our philosophies admit of, the trouble is finding the evidence for it.

  141. #142 Andyo
    January 18, 2010

    OK so far I’ve avoided these thousand-post threads (I mean, come on!), but a bigfoot believer? Count me in!

    Posted by: speedweasel | January 17, 2010 11:53 PM

    How is it that mythusmage has thus far avoided my killfile?

    Why would you want to killfile a bigfoot believer? That’s crazy!

  142. #143 Blind Squirrel FCD
    January 18, 2010
    Another watershed came in October 1967 with ?one of the most momentous events in the annals of Bigfoot hunting? (Bord and Bord 1982, 80). Roger Patterson, a longtime Bigfoot enthusiast who had frequently ?discovered? the creature?s tracks, encountered a man-beast as he and a sidekick rode at Bluff Creek. It spooked the men?s horses but as his mount fell, Patterson claimed, he jumped clear, grabbed a movie camera from his saddlebag, and filmed the creature as it strode away with a seemingly exaggerated stride, ?as if,? wrote Daniel Cohen (1982, 17), ?a bad actor were trying to simulate a monster?s walk.?

    Patterson?s creature had hairy, pendulous breasts, a detail many thought so convincing that it argued against the film being a hoax. Actually, Patterson had previously made a drawing of just such a supposed female creature which appeared in his book, published the year before (Patterson 1966, 111).

    Although early in the next millennium a Patterson acquaintance, Bob Heironimus, confessed he had been the man in the ape suit (Long 2004), some skeptics as well as die-hard monster enthusiasts refused to believe him.

    From http://www.csicop.org/si/show/mysterious_entities_of_the_pacific_northwest_part_i/
    BS

  143. #144 speedweasel
    January 18, 2010

    MM said,

    #135

    A Noyd,

    I can’t. Because I didn’t say it, I typed it.

    How childishly fucking pedantic is that? Way to meaningfully engage with people, MM. Go away already, you’re wasting people’s time and insulting their intelligence.

  144. #145 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 18, 2010

    MM- Look sonny boy, I was one of the most god fearing, believing, scripture award winning fundamentalist Old Believers ever.

    But the more I studied it, and the more I tried to believe it, was the more I could see it was bullshit.

    Don’t even try it with me. Genesis is such horse shit that if you can’t see the huge gaps I think you are a child or an idiot.

  145. #146 Mr T
    January 18, 2010

    mythus:

    I’m not trying to convince you there’s no reason to believe in a god. I’m trying to get you to doubt your convictions.

    (Note that I’ve written the previous two sentences in present progressive. However, these are just assertions until I actually do it. At the moment, I’m tired and slightly drunk, so I’ll stick with that.)

  146. #147 Blind Squirrel FCD
    January 18, 2010

    My post above inspired by flyonthewall who jogged my memory, so I did that thing with the Google and it popped right up.

    BS

  147. #148 Andyo
    January 18, 2010

    Don’t even try it with me. Genesis is such horse shit that if you can’t see the huge gaps I think you are a child or an idiot.

    If even the catholics (ex-me!) are too embarrassed to believe the old testament literally that’s got to tell you something.

  148. #149 mythusmage
    January 18, 2010

    #143

    Blind Squirrel,

    Are you sure of your source, and do you have evidence the author actually knows what he’s talking about? What I hear from the author are assumptions based on a priori reasoning. Can he demonstrate his assumptions can be verified?

    I point you to a pro sasquatch forum can you consider the possibility they might actually have something valid to say? Fuck God and the leviathan He rode in on, without reservation can you consider the possibility sasquatch believers have something valid to say?

  149. #150 A. Noyd
    January 18, 2010

    mythusmage (#140)

    I can’t. Because I didn’t say it, I typed it.

    Lamest dodge ever. First, I asked for evidence of what you claim other people are saying. Or typing. Or whatever floats your fucking boat. Second, you’re not “hearing” what other people are typing, but you were happy to use the metaphor up in #105, so where do you get off going all literal on us now? Ridiculous.

    Shut up until you can give evidence that anyone is actually saying (or typing or posting or whatever-verb-you-need-to-understand-what-I-mean-ing) that “the lack of evidence means we can’t go looking.” A simple quote from anyone here (or in previous threads) will do.

  150. #151 Mr T
    January 18, 2010

    mythus:

    There is more to reality that our philosophies admit of, the trouble is finding the evidence for it.

    If you quote Shakespeare, then quote Shakespeare.

    There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio,
    Than are dreamt of in your philosophy.

    Ironically, ghosts (including Hamlet’s father) are not one of those things.

  151. #152 Rutee, Shrieking Harpy of Dooooom
    January 18, 2010

    In the utmost of fairness and irritation, I will point out that technically, Blind Squirrel is supposed to point out the evidence that contradicts the whateverthehell it was video. At least, that’s how I learned in better depth the Scientific Method, but eh.

    That said, no body, no bigfoot (Like no flag, no country), is my stance. And I was incredibly sad on realizing that PZ was referencing Bigfoot this endless thread because I knew this one sided snowball fight would happen.

  152. #153 Andyo
    January 18, 2010

    hey anyone watches late night talk show comedy? I usually don’t go for the entertainment news, but it’s gotten the funniest in years since everyone is angry now, and Leno is getting his dues.

    Of course, I’m on Team Conan. Also check out Andy Richter’s answer. A bit wishy-washy but good in comparison to all the other tripe.

  153. #154 Jadehawk, OM
    January 18, 2010

    awesome t-shirt designs!

    one for David,
    one for Josh and Alan B,
    and one for Nerd
    :-)

  154. #155 mythusmage
    January 18, 2010

    #146

    Mr T,

    You doubt I doubt? I doubt the existence of reality, for ultimately our proofs come down to what we observe and how we interpret it. That there is a reality out there we can experience and experience in common I am convinced of, but I am not absolutely convinced of it.

    The weight of the evidence comes down on the side of the proposition that reality is pretty much as we observe it, and that reality is independent of us. What we believe and what we need to be true has nothing to do with reality, but more with our need to be special; with our need to be something separate from the world, not of it but of some greater realm.

    You make a mistake in observation, you correct your mistake in observation. That is my understanding of science. I may be wrong about that, but I see no reason to have faith in any alternative that does not allow for the recognition and correction of error. For is that not the path to religion?

  155. #156 Blind Squirrel FCD
    January 18, 2010

    Without reservation? Certainly (heh) not. I’m going to go with the preponderance of evidence.
    Bob Heironimus passes lie detector test:
    http://www.bigfootencounters.com/articles/polygraph.htm:
    There are a few other interesting articles under Bob Heironimus You might want to read.

  156. #157 mythusmage
    January 18, 2010

    #151

    Mr T,

    I reserve the write to restate Shakespeare. After all, isn’t West Side Story a restatement of Romeo and Juliet? :)

  157. #158 arachnophilia
    January 18, 2010

    while i happen to think that an unknown great ape in america is slightly more likely than, say, UFOs or the loch ness monster, i still refuse to believe bigfoot actually exists.

    why? because the self-proclaimed bigfoot experts don’t either.

    you know how i know? because i’ve seen hours upon hours of them out in the woods hunting for the thing. and if they actually seriously believed that there was a 8-foot tall, 500-lb, potentially dangerous wild animal in the area, they would bring fucking rifles.

  158. #159 aratina cage of the OM
    January 18, 2010

    mythusmage #20, I have seen a Bigfoot footprint. It was all part of the culmination of a spooky story told to a bunch of kids while out on a trip in a snowy wilderness. The magic of the story of Bigfoot is much the same as the magic of the story of Santa Claus (Bigfoot hunters and “finders”, for that matter, are not much different than people who make movies about Santa Claus or sell reindeer trinkets for the Xmas tree)—they are both a fun inside joke for adults and a sort of fable that serves as a warning to children (in the case of Sasquatch the moral is to not venture off in the woods alone). That is really all it is.

  159. #160 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 18, 2010

    Nerd – Since this is an open thread – have a look at #31 Lace Stockings, Vogue Knitting Spring/Summer 2009 – on YouTube it’s my next knitting project. The Redhead may want to try it too. It’s naughty.

    And now back to the idiot.

  160. #161 Blind Squirrel FCD
    January 18, 2010

    In the utmost of fairness and irritation, I will point out that technically, Blind Squirrel is supposed to point out the evidence that contradicts the whateverthehell it was video.

    Working on it. Here is a video of Bob H walking with bigfoot from the Patterson video along side. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HCzRBzBmUjE

    BS

  161. #162 mythusmage
    January 18, 2010

    #156

    Blind Squirrel,

    Didn’t think so. From what you’ve posted on this subject I have come to doubt your willingness to be honest.

    Where polygraphs are concerned, research — the last I heard — has shown that the lie detector is no such thing. It shows responses to questions, not whether the respondent is lying or not. Polygraphs show the possibility of the intent to deceive, they do nothing to show that a person is lying or telling the truth. Read up on the available work and see what it has to say.

    Where Bob Erroneous is concerned, keep in mind that pathological liars have fooled polygraphs before. Also keep in mind that if you think Patterson has a spotty past (and he does), compared to Heironimus he qualifies as an honest man. For the life of me I don’t see how such a dumpy little twerp could ever pass for Patty. Unless, that is, they needed to believe he was Patty.

    BTW, thank you for reminding me of the man’s name. I tend to forget details like that, and that trait does nothing positive for any claim I make.

  162. #163 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 18, 2010

    I keep telling you people it’s my hairy assed brother Ed.

  163. #164 Blind Squirrel FCD
    January 18, 2010

    Also Bob H dressed in a bigfoot suit Imitating the Paterson video. That’s all I can be bothered with on this subject. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nMPmMJeEoqY&feature=player_embedded

    BS

  164. #165 RickR
    January 18, 2010

    “I point you to a pro sasquatch forum can you consider the possibility they might actually have something valid to say? Fuck God and the leviathan He rode in on, without reservation can you consider the possibility sasquatch believers have something valid to say?”

    I, for one, would not. Because it isn’t arguments that would convince me. Not only is talk cheap, it’s an enormous waste of time.

    Hard evidence. Bring it. I’ll consider it.

  165. #166 mythusmage
    January 18, 2010

    #161

    Blind Squirrel,

    You are aware that the mash-up was produced to show that Heironimus was not Patty? Can you show us that Bob matches Patty in size, in proportion, in stride without grossly manipulating the images? Can you explain why the reddish hair of Bob’s costume differs so much from the dark brown of Patty’s hair? Can you explain why the hair on Bob’s costume differs so much in length and texture from Patty’s hair? Why is the face on Bob’s costume so stiff, when Patty’s face is so expressive.

    BTW gentles, this is what I mean by raising doubts.

    One more thing before I go — for I am getting a bit worn out: Can you be sure, truly sure, I’m not PZ Myers doing this to hype Pharyngula and increase traffic? I know I’m not PZ Myers, but how do I prove I’m not? :D

  166. #167 Blind Squirrel FCD
    January 18, 2010

    From what you’ve posted on this subject I have come to doubt your willingness to be honest.

    My honesty? Where does that even enter in? I honestly found these links. This can be verified. I admit to a little concern about the clarity of your reasoning, however.

    BS

  167. #168 mythusmage
    January 18, 2010

    Sorry, but this I must answer…

    #165

    Rick R,

    Did I ask you to be convinced by them, or to consider the possibility they might have something valid to say?

  168. #169 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 18, 2010

    Shame on you RickR – The Holy Babble says:In the beginning GOD created the heaven and the earth. Genesis 1:1

    Now how can you doubt such a thing? It’s in the book.

  169. #170 RickR
    January 18, 2010

    “Did I ask you to be convinced by them, or to consider the possibility they might have something valid to say?”

    I’m sure they must have many valid things to say. Probably on a variety of topics.

    However, I would only be convinced about the existence of something called “Bigfoot” by hard evidence. When that has been obtained, please, let us know.

  170. #171 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 18, 2010

    MM – Yes we can be sure it’s not PZ because you are an idiot, and he has no reason to morph idiot trolls.

    Fool.

  171. #172 mythusmage
    January 18, 2010

    And this…

    #167

    Blind Squirrel,

    Your honesty about your arguments and your conclusions. Are you honestly considering the question, or doing your best to avoid addressing it? Are you going by what you think I want, or by what I’ve been asking for?

    (Night all, I’ve got to go plan my next nefarious scheme to promote this blog. I mean, it takes a lot of money to keep me and the trophy wife in a manner we’ve become accustomed to.

    PZ My… Mythusmage

  172. #173 Blind Squirrel FCD
    January 18, 2010

    Damn, but this is the reason I gave up riding Greyhound buses. I get someone like mythusmage for a seatmate every time. Give me a couple of Jehovah’s Witnesses any day. At least I know the ground rules.

    BS

  173. #174 A. Noyd
    January 18, 2010

    mythusmage (#162)

    Also keep in mind that if you think Patterson has a spotty past (and he does), compared to Heironimus he qualifies as an honest man.

    Because hoaxes are usually perpetrated by honest people, right?

    Before you sneak off, give me the damn evidence I asked for.

  174. #175 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 18, 2010

    Fucktard.

  175. #176 A. Noyd
    January 18, 2010

    Well, rats. Maybe he’ll suffocate in his own fog of irony and not come back.

  176. #177 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 18, 2010

    The christards always come back.

    They have no proof of their gawd or big foot, but they always come back. Fools.

  177. #179 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 18, 2010

    What this thread needs is lesbian nipples wrapped in bacon nested in Hickory chips.

    It’ll do for a start. :)

  178. #180 RickR
    January 18, 2010

    “What this thread needs is lesbian nipples wrapped in bacon nested in Hickory chips.”

    That goes without saying. ;)

  179. #181 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 18, 2010

    OK, well how about some brass bossoms, burnished by bacon?

    The Chimp is going to swoon shortly with all of this bacony goodness.

  180. #182 RickR
    January 18, 2010

    Now I’m hungry.

  181. #183 Travis
    January 18, 2010

    I do not have any lesbian nipples (though I could probably ask friends for some help in this matter but that has to wait until tomorrow), no bacon, or hickory chips, but I have some beer and I have been indulging. It does certainly help me stomach the troll.

  182. #184 Krystalline Apostate
    January 18, 2010

    Uh, hey guys, I don’t think y’all should be messing with Sasquatch

  183. #185 MikeTheInfidel
    January 18, 2010

    Wait, wait, wait. Was that PZ fucking with us this whole time, or just him editing the last post from mythusmage?

  184. #186 blf
    January 18, 2010

    After long consideration of the matter I think I’ve solved several mysteries. First, is there no bigfoot scat, no bigfoot bodies, no bigfoot laterines, no bigfoot children, nothing but rare sightings, even rarer strands of fur, and some strange footprints? Second, where does bigfoot hide or live? And finally, third, where are the Entwives?

    It’s obvious: Bigfoots are the Entwives.

    Ents are known to only drink. So no scat.

    They drink water. I presume the urine, if any, would be very hard to distinguish from other normal stuff in the forest.

    When they don’t move, Ents look like trees. So there could be lots of bigfoots, only not moving. We only occasionally spot the restless ones.

    And since the Ents lost the Entwives a long long time ago, all the Ent children have grown up. Which is why no bigfoot children are known.

    It all seems to fit. Bigfoots are the Entwives.
    Q.E.D.

  185. #187 Militant Agnostic
    January 18, 2010

    This Monster Talk podcast makes a compelling case that the Patterson/Gimlin film is a hoax.

    http://monstertalk.skeptic.com/media/skeptic/002_Monstertalk.mp3

    Even when I was a Sasquatch believer, I thought the PG film was probably a hoax.

    My hypothesis is they are alien tourists on “back to nature” holidays in the galactic boonies. They are supposed to avoid any contact with us, but a few of them can’t resist scaring the bejeezus out of the rubes. This would explain the lack of scat and bodies.

    MM would have us believe there have been collisions between small cars and Sasquatches. If this occurred at any significant speed, the results would be catastrophic for both parties.

    If you haven’t seen the Arthur C Clarke’s Mysterious world Sasquatch episode, you should watch it for the footprint hoaxing demonstration. The large old guy running while wearing wooden Sasquatch feet is simply amazing.

  186. #188 llewelly
    January 18, 2010

    I knew I wouldn’t have to wait long for Bigfoot to disprove the Laramide Orogeny.

  187. #189 F
    January 18, 2010

    Then there’s the fact we’ve been looking in the wrong places for sasquatch fossils.

    Yes.

    Perhaps we should look in Universe 5.

  188. #190 shonny
    January 18, 2010

    Bigfoot?
    Nah, just Robin Williams on holidays!

  189. #191 Stephen Wells
    January 18, 2010

    Let’s see now. Many videos- blurry, low-quality videos with poor provenance- show hairy bigfoot-type creatures walking around in North America.

    No bodies or physical evidence of such a creature have ever been found.

    In most cases the creature on the videos can be identified as a guy in an ape suit.

    The entity in mythusmage’s favourite video (the gospel according to sasquatch) is either (i) a real bigfoot or (ii) a guy in an ape suit.

    We know that guys in ape suits exist.

    What’s our default hypothesis here? Don’t all shout at once.

  190. #192 SEF
    January 18, 2010

    The sasquatch films always look and move like humans in hairy suits. And that’s not as simple a statement as it seems.

    The sasquatch is always larger than a human – such that it could easily be a human in a hairy suit. There’s no part of any sasquatch which is smaller or slimmer than human. Whereas among the real great apes, there’s some variation in proportions. Eg much longer arms and shorter legs. The gait of real non-human primates differs far more from human norms than that of any purported sasquatch does.

    The modern software packages which analyse images, eg for police or film industry, could probably do a good job of showing that the joint positions (ie limb proportions) and ranges of motion of an alleged sasquatch match up all too well with those of a human.

  191. #193 John Morales
    January 18, 2010

    PZ, spammer “indogreenteak” is polluting old threads.

    MythusMage:

    [1] It is very easy to see the creationist in others, it is very hard to see the creationist in you.
    [2] (Cue irate response from John Morales in 5, 4, 3…)

    1. Yes, it is hard to see that which is not there. :)

    2. No ire, just disappointment. You could be (and, sometimes, have been) an interesting commenter… instead you’ve chosen to post in a manner indistinguishable to that of a troll, and you use your claimed Asperger’s as an excuse.

    Tsk. You accrue bad PharynguKarma thereby.

    That said, I will indulge you as I would any such poster:
    Are you aware of how many species of apes/hominids are known to exist in North America?

    Are you aware of the geographical distribution of claimed sightings in the USA, and if so, how does affect your conjecture?

    Are you aware of the many similar stories of humaniform megafaunal cryptids across many continents and cultures?

  192. #194 spunmunkey
    January 18, 2010

    Hi everyone!

    I have decided to come in from the lurkers.

    MM shows a severe lack of knowledge of mythical creatures – Yetis and Bunyips for starters… *LOL*

    Gee MM ? looks like everyone has their own BF.

  193. #195 Judy L.
    January 18, 2010

    Am I the only one who’s always baffled by the presence of a SINGLE sasquatch in all these videos? As far as I know, all primate species are highly social, and with the exception of a silver-back gorilla enjoying some alone time and some poor monkey being scorned from the group, whenever I’ve seen filmed footage of non-human primates in their natural habitats they’re always in groups.

  194. #196 SEF
    January 18, 2010

    The lone sasquatch doesn’t just need family, it needs ancestry. How is it supposed to have traversed to the US from Africa/Asia (where the great apes evolved) without apparently even being tool-using (not just on film footage but also because that would mean another strand of physical evidence found wanting)?

    If the sasquatch had boats, why aren’t they spotted out fishing in them? Did the “native” american humans ever mention seeing them before? Did they sneak over on European boats just before the earliest reported sighting?

  195. #197 SEF
    January 18, 2010

    Then there’s the too-rapid evolution of specific features of the sasquatch (not just differences across long-standing legends). Eg the changes in the sort of foot-prints allegedly left by them.

  196. #198 MetzO'Magic
    January 18, 2010

    Do you people think thread is free or grows on trees or something?

    No, but spaghetti does:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=27ugSKW4-QQ

  197. #199 Knockgoats
    January 18, 2010

    Judy L., SEF,

    While I’m almost as sure there’s no Bigfoot as I am that there’s no Loch Ness Monster (and for similar reasons – no good evidence, implausibility of a viable population existing), I don’t think your latest points hold: orang-utans are solitary, and many large mammals have spread from Asia to North America via the intermittently-existing Beringia land-bridge. If Bigfoot existed, it would most likely be related to Gigantopithecus, which lived in SE Asia until at least 300,000 years ago, and may have been bipedal.

  198. #200 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 18, 2010

    Poor MM just isn’t getting it. Just like creationists and their imaginary deity. He can harp all he wants about his soft, inconclusive evidence, but his harping is meaningless and useless. He needs that body. Without it, he cannot make any scientific conclusions about the existence of sasquatch.

    And he can keep his ideas about “shaking things up” to himself. To date, he has presented very silly ideas without conclusive evidence. That convinces nobody, and makes him look like a fool.

  199. #201 Feynmaniac
    January 18, 2010

    Well, belief in Bigfoot is at least more rational than creationism….

  200. #202 MetzO'Magic
    January 18, 2010

    Alright, I’ve learned my lesson. Already pipped at #45 with the BBC spaghetti tree hoax. Will read entire thread before posting from now on :-/

  201. #203 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    January 18, 2010

    Sasquatch is real? Seriously?

    Is this supposed to be clever? Or humorous?

    One more thing before I go — for I am getting a bit worn out: Can you be sure, truly sure, I’m not PZ Myers doing this to hype Pharyngula and increase traffic? I know I’m not PZ Myers, but how do I prove I’m not? :D

    ugh

    It is very easy to see the creationist in others, it is very hard to see the creationist in you.

    Something you are demonstrating quite well with your Bigfoot wooism.

    No excuse me, I’m off on a snipe hunt followed by a Jackalope trapping session.

  202. #204 SEF
    January 18, 2010

    many large mammals have spread from Asia to North America via the intermittently-existing Beringia land-bridge.

    But then reports of it and physical evidence of it would have to match that route (as well as each other!).

  203. #205 https://www.google.com/accounts/o8/id?id=AItOawkxPcOu-NB6l49mcRg06fXAAAgW2ewHeVI
    January 18, 2010

    If anyone here is tired of the same old creationist trolls, you might want to try out this wackaloon. Scroll down to find the evolution stuff.

    http://zdenny.com/

  204. #206 Rorschach
    January 18, 2010

    Enough Sasquatsch already, I want our endless thread back !

    Here are a few educational clips :

    Sean Carroll-EvoDevo lecture 2007

    Brian Cox-What is time?

    Richard Feynman-Take the world from another point of view

  205. #207 SEF
    January 18, 2010

    I don’t see any bacon flavouring in this recipe/design. Someone should remedy that. Or perhaps do an octopus/squid cake.

    Just the other day, I was wondering whether there was much in the way of cheese-flavoured cake (I’m not counting cheese-cake because that’s an entirely different animal). It might be harder to flavour a spider cake realistically.

  206. #208 MetzO'Magic
    January 18, 2010

    Hmm. I agree with John Morales that mythusmage is usually a decent commenter. The wife must have put the blue pill in his cereal this morning by mistake.

  207. #209 SEF
    January 18, 2010

    I disagree.

    Anyhow, which particular blue pill would that be to give the alleged personality change?

  208. #210 IanM
    January 18, 2010

    The absence of evidence isn’t evidence of anything except that we haven’t any evidence. Accepting the absence of evidence as evidence of anything but our lack of evidence is evidence of lack of common sense. Of course, common sense itself has been much tarnished by the simpleton punditocracy but a good rule of thumb with regard to common sense is that any claim which begins, “It’s only common sense that blah blah blah” lacks any real sense, common or otherwise.

  209. #211 Knockgoats
    January 18, 2010

    The absence of evidence isn’t evidence of anything except that we haven’t any evidence. – IanM

    Garbage. There is a complete absence of evidence of live Apatosaurus in central London. this is conclusive evidence that they do not live there.

  210. #212 Lynna, OM
    January 18, 2010

    A.Noyd @98

    I’d mail you my neighbors if I could. They use some sort of orange-scented cleanser that comes through the ventilation system in the bathroom and makes that side of my apartment absolutely reek of oranges for days. (Though, if I’m granting myself unlikely abilities, I might as well just wish you all better!)

    Thanks for the thought, but please don’t send me your neighbors. By the close of the season in which I hiked most of the Idaho/Montana portion of the Continental Divide Trail, I could smell food cooking up to half a mile away, and the people in my neighborhood who used softening dryer sheets that were scented drove me crazy. Yuck. They filled the air for blocks around with orange or lilac or “mountain spring” scents … and all of them were horrible riffs on the real thing. Poison, I tell you.

    My nose seems back to normal (for human beings) now, so I only smell dryer-vented scents when I pass by the house that is exuding them.

    Actually, real orange oil is not quite as bad as all those blended fake scents, but it’s still way too strong.

    The heated scents out of the dryers are the worst. Someone will eventually discover how bad they are, and that they trigger allergies. Outlaw them, I say.

  211. #213 AJ Milne
    January 18, 2010

    Seein’ as Patricia’s outing her brother Ed, I guess this is only right, now. Even overdue…

    See, the truth is, I’m pretty sure I’m the Yeti…

    And no, I’m not (quite) that big, and definitely not that hairy.

    But it’s a funny story… It involved what was stacking up to be a lovely evening with a local Brahmin’s daughter being cut short by the unscheduled appearance of her brother and several of his alarmingly well-armed friends, an escape from a hut in the dead of winter while wrapped in the bearskin rug that just happened to be awfully close at hand at the time, a coating of snow on said rug making it look all streaky white, then this mutually alarming encounter with some local farmers…

    Anyway. That and my size 13 clodhoppers sealed the deal, I’m afraid. My sincerest apologies for any inconvenience this may have caused anyone.

    Oh. I’m pretty sure I’m the skunk ape, too… Similar story, oddly enough…

    (/And as to the smell, what can I say, but Betty Sue always said she preferred it when I hadn’t showered for a week or two.)

  212. #214 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 18, 2010

    The absence of evidence can be meaningful. If people have been looking for years, and nothing conclusive is ever found, it can have meaning. So the absence of evidence is meaningful for sasquatch, Nessie, and present day Apatosauruses. It doesn’t have as much meaning for a hard to find, but known bird, that might be on the edge of extinction, and hasn’t been seen for 25 years. It is important to remember that the reason science tends to require positive evidence is that one can’t prove a negative. After a million tests that find nothing conclusive for the existence of sasquatch, the credulous believer in the myth could always say you need to run another million tests.

  213. #215 Rorschach
    January 18, 2010

    TMI @ 213,

    TMI !
    :-)

  214. #216 Walton
    January 18, 2010

    I’m going to say something which is rather controversial, and which will probably get me flamed by a few people. But it needs saying, and I’ll accept whatever abuse I get as a result of it. This thread is the only appropriate place I can think of to say it, by virtue of its being an open thread.

    Pharyngula has a serious cultural problem, due to this ingrained idea that tone and politeness do not matter. A lot of people here regularly point out, correctly, that tone and politeness do not affect the objective truth value of a statement: “Two plus two fucking equals four, you fucking stupid fuckwit fuck fuck fuck” is no less true, in an objective sense, than “Two plus two equals four”.

    But the fact that tone is irrelevant to truth does not mean that tone is unimportant. In any environment where people use their brains, people are always going to disagree, sometimes vehemently, about various things. But in a civilised community, people evolve rules of politeness and etiquette for dealing with these disagreements. Civilised people ought to be able to separate disagreement from personal dislike, and to challenge someone else’s ideas without attacking that person on a personal level.

    This doesn’t mean that everyone merits respect and politeness. Someone like “Global Warming is a Scam” (et autres pseudonyms), who is just here to troll and flame and repeat the same nonsense over and over, can quite legitimately be told to fuck off. Similarly, someone who intentionally uses offensive racial or gendered epithets, for the purpose of attacking and demeaning others, does not deserve any courtesy or consideration.

    But I would argue that it is unnecessary to attack people simply because they have wrong ideas. Some people have been unjustifiably unpleasant to mythusmage, here and on previous versions of the open thread, when he wasn’t doing anything to merit such attacks. Yes, he might be entirely wrong about Bigfoot (I don’t know anything about the issue, and couldn’t care less), and about tectonic plates and various other topics. But he’s well-meaning, and it’s perfectly possible to converse with him and correct any misapprehensions without attacking his intelligence or character.

    When I first appeared at Pharyngula, I got a hostile reception from a lot of people. In those days, I held a lot of ideas which I now believe were completely wrongheaded. But life is a learning process, and I come here to educate myself and expand my mind. The reason I stayed was because there were a few people – Bill Dauphin, especially, stands out in my mind – who were willing to engage me in rational, interesting discussion without attacking me on a personal level. And this process has actually changed my life and my worldview on a number of levels. It can, and does, do the same for other people – but it won’t, if everyone who wants to learn and discuss things is driven away by being attacked and insulted.

    There are, of course, a range of predictable responses. You can say “If you don’t like it, don’t read the blog”. But as I just outlined, reading and commenting here has actually made a substantial change to my life and my understanding of the world. So it is important. I don’t doubt that someone will accuse me of being a “tone troll”, and I would bet money that someone will reply to this post with words to the effect of “Your concern is noted”. But I hope some people will think about what I’ve said.

  215. #217 Rorschach
    January 18, 2010

    But in a civilised community, people evolve rules of politeness and etiquette for dealing with these disagreements. Civilised people ought to be able to separate disagreement from personal dislike, and to challenge someone else’s ideas without attacking that person on a personal level.

    Walton, as a regular here you would have noticed by now that politeness and etiquette do not mean for a christian what they mean to non-christians, and that xtians just love to confuse disagreement with personal dislike, because it helps them distract everyone from the fact that they are losing on the argument front.
    This is just silly.I’m surprised you would bring it up.

  216. #218 Alan B
    January 18, 2010

    Except for the Spaghetti Harvest, this may be the best of the BBC April Fool films:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8kvWS1XwCMM&feature=related

    They even produced a “How did we make it” film:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lzhDsojoqk8&NR=1

    I keep pretending to be a flying penguin but my grandson thinks I’m mad.

    [Ed. Your grandson is right!]

  217. #219 AJ Milne
    January 18, 2010

    TMI !

    Sorry man. But y’know… Been carrying that around a while…

    Now the Loch Ness Monster, anyway, that’s not me…

    But I have heard convincing evidence that that was probably just Walton’s mom, skinny dipping*…

    (/*This joke is still pending review by the Tone Police. If it does not pass muster, minors will please try to forget they never heard it. The rest of you may also, of course, choose to do the same, at your own discretion.)

  218. #220 eddie
    January 18, 2010

    zdenny is clearly a dolt. He(?) refers to his first and second links but even gets them in the wrong order. An extreme case of ‘that source doesn’t say what you claim it says’. Even taking them in the right way they still contraindicate what they’re claimed to indicate

  219. #221 Walton
    January 18, 2010

    Rorschach, you’re missing my point. Of course disagreement and personal dislike are different things; that’s exactly the point I’m making. But a lot of people here have a tendency to combine disagreement with unnecessary personal attacks. It is possible to disagree with someone, even vehemently, without calling them a “fuckwit” or otherwise calling their moral character or intelligence into question. And there is a good reason for choosing to be nice to people, even where they hold completely wrongheaded ideas: a pleasant, polite argument will often convince them to change their minds. I’m a case in point: I’ve changed my mind on any number of issues, sometimes two or three times, since I started commenting here, as a result of discussions on Pharyngula.

    I’m not accusing you particularly, and I apologise if I created that impression.

  220. #222 Alan B
    January 18, 2010

    #52 Mr T said:

    It’s all so stupid that I want to vomit on small woodland creatures.

    Oh dear!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n3swCYXAiPc

  221. #223 Celtic_Evolution
    January 18, 2010

    Walton…

    That was the longest tone-concern troll post I think I’ve ever read. It’s not new, and it’s not that interesting. There are MANY personalities here, some calm, some entertaining, some acerbic, some downright mean-spirited. They all contribute to the dialog, and frankly, they ALL have merit.

    I hardly consider myself to be in the position of being able to decide what tone is appropriate, and I’m fairly sure you aren’t either, Walton. For some, being angry and sharp-tongued, even vulgar, helps get their point across.

    I’m sorry, but who are you to determine for anyone the method by which a message is delivered? If you personally think that being cordial, polite and patient is the best way to get your point across, then by all means do so. If you are one of those people who is sick of the requirement of deference to stupid, archaic, insane, harmful and deceitful lies that are the hallmarks of religion and anti-science, then you might strike a different chord with your comments.

    And this goes not just for the sender, but also for the recipient… some people respond better to rational discourse, some need to have it beat over their head to get the point. Either way, once again, who are you to determine which method works best?

    Either way, I for one am grateful for the vast collection of completely different personalities; the various methods of delivery… from Cuttlefish’s brilliant, often strikingly poignant minstrelsy, to Sastra’s elegant, insightful, articulate prose, to Nerd of Redhead’s simple, direct, take-no-prisoners, indignant vitriol… I love all of it.

    I also love that we are all able to take each other to task when attacks are unwarranted or premature… I’ve heard this place called an “echo-chamber” by not-so-regulars and it never fails to make me laugh. This place is anything but, and no-one who’s spent more than a week here reading the comments would ever be foolish able to make such a comment.

    You, Walton, should know better than to make such a complaint. I don’t know if you just woke up on the wrong side of the bed today or what but please, get over it already.

    Oh… and yes, your concern, IS noted.

  222. #224 Lynna, OM
    January 18, 2010

    Jadehawk @154: I like the Ferrous Wheel best. Good find.

  223. #225 Rorschach
    January 18, 2010

    Hm ok, to elaborate on my last comment,

    I will concede that for a lot of people, christians or not, the tone will influence the truth value of a statement, as regrettable as that may be, and I will also concede that we are probably currently underestimating the effect this has on debates with believers.
    We know it’s wrong, and it shouldn’t influence judgment about a statement, but unfortunately for many people, it does.
    On Pharyngula, we can brush it off and logic and rationality, let alone numbers, are on our side.
    In a lecture theatre or classroom debating some loon, not so much.

    I think we are not doing this very well outside of internet fora at the moment, Walton, so point conceded.

    But I would argue that it is unnecessary to attack people simply because they have wrong ideas

    I think it is important that we do, because wrong ideas hurt people, and fuck with mankind.

    To the question of how to react to tone trolls, outside Pharyngula and in the public domain, I have no definitive answer, it remains a problem as long as so many people really think the truth value of a statement changes with the number of swear words it contains.

  224. #226 Stephen Wells
    January 18, 2010

    Plato on a pogo stick, Walton, did you really just say that you don’t know and don’t care about the existence of Bigfoot and mythusmage’s advocacy of same? You think Bigfoot is seriously an open question? That level of ignorance and incuriousity does not reflect well on you.

    If somebody pops up here saying that a film of a guy in an ape suit constitutes good evidence for the existence of a race of giant hominids wandering the USA, they deserve to be mocked. Your comments on tone are misguided because no argument in any tone is going to correct mythusmage’s cognitive problem. Any idea that stupid, and its proponents, should be mocked pour decourager les autres, not because we think mm himself is even listening.

  225. #227 Walton
    January 18, 2010

    You think Bigfoot is seriously an open question?

    No, I did not say that. I said I don’t know anything about it, and don’t care. The existence or non-existence of Bigfoot makes, so far as I can tell, absolutely no difference to anything important.

    There are lots of issues which are vitally important to society, and affect real people’s lives – global warming, science education, terrorism, religion, medicine, civil liberties and so on – which are discussed here on a daily basis, and which I am interested in learning about and discussing. I don’t see how the existence or otherwise of Bigfoot can be said to fall into that category.

  226. #228 PaleGreenPants
    January 18, 2010

    Serious Walton is serious.

  227. #229 Celtic_Evolution
    January 18, 2010

    It is very easy to see the creationist in others, it is very hard to see the creationist in you.

    Damn, I see this argument a lot anymore… trying to prop up your own silly ideas by calling people that disagree with you as bad as creationists… what the hell?

    When did it become ok to assume you have credibility in advocating other stupid, evidentially unsupported ideas just because you don’t believe in one of them?

  228. #230 Alan B
    January 18, 2010

    #154 Jadehawk Thanks for the T shirt.

    But I’ve told you and I’ve told you and I’ve told you!

    “Don’t mix the mustard with the chilli sauce!”

    (Liked the ferrous wheel too.)

    Oh yes. When are palaeontologists going to sort out spelling? Chemists sorted out sulfur/sulphur and aluminium/aluminum decades ago.

    (To save David M the trouble, yes I do know the argument about the ć dipthong / ligature.)

  229. #231 Antiochus Epiphanes
    January 18, 2010

    blf #186 FTW

  230. #232 Celtic_Evolution
    January 18, 2010

    The existence or non-existence of Bigfoot makes, so far as I can tell, absolutely no difference to anything important.

    Ummm… no, Walton… a discovery that a bigfoot-like creature was real would be wildly important to many fields of study, not the least of which would be biology and anthropology.

  231. #233 Lynna, OM
    January 18, 2010

    Pharyngula has a serious cultural problem, due to this ingrained idea that tone and politeness do not matter. A lot of people here regularly point out, correctly, that tone and politeness do not affect the objective truth value of a statement: “Two plus two fucking equals four, you fucking stupid fuckwit fuck fuck fuck” is no less true, in an objective sense, than “Two plus two equals four”.

    Walton, Walton, Walton. Sigh.
    Pharyngula has a serious culture, with a great sense of humor. It is too important to be taken seriously, if I may paraphrase Oscar Wilde.

    I think I would have to come up with some new swear words to describe the situation if the Overlord instituted a Policy of Politeness (PoP).

    I don’t want any whey-faced, fawning tone trolls loving me for my refined, weasel-reeking language.

    Pharyngula is rare — that combination of serious chatter about the things that matter, with a dollop of snark spice! That combo indicates passion, vitality and intellectual rigor. Take the “culture” away, or tone it down, and you take the life out of it. No more rigor, just rigor mortis.

  232. #234 Antiochus Epiphanes
    January 18, 2010

    Something to add, re blf #186:

    When mythusmage was spouting crazy shit regarding plate tectonics, a number of you (Alan B, Josh, David M, Dania et al.*) provided informative responses, and I felt like I was getting a miniseminar in geology. It was delightful. However, this sasquatch business is just lame. There really isn’t anything to learn. Or so I thought. Thank you blf for making this thread a worthy read.

    Thank you, thank you, thank you.

    *Sorry if I missed anyone.

  233. #235 Walton
    January 18, 2010

    I’ve heard this place called an “echo-chamber” by not-so-regulars and it never fails to make me laugh. This place is anything but, and no-one who’s spent more than a week here reading the comments would ever be foolish able to make such a comment.

    I did not call Pharyngula an echo-chamber. I agree with you that it is nothing of the sort. If anything, the problem is the opposite; the regulars are too ready to turn on each other over political or scientific disagreements.

  234. #236 Stephen Wells
    January 18, 2010

    Walton: if you “don’t know” about bigfoot, you are saying you do not know enough to be able to decide whether or not it is plausible that a race of giant hairy hominids is inhabiting the woodlands of the USA and periodically posing for blurry video stills.

    I think that more or less disqualifies you from forming opinions about anything important. If you can’t come to a rational decision on the plausibility of Bigfoot, your opinions on global warming, science education, terrorism, religion, medicine, civil liberties and so on are utterly and completely worthless, because you lack both the knowledge and the reasoning ability to form any useful opinions.

  235. #237 Sven DiMilo
    January 18, 2010

    But enough about sasquatch.

    Let’s talk about sasquatch’s taste in music:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kf8TM4CIk5g

  236. #238 Celtic_Evolution
    January 18, 2010

    I did not call Pharyngula an echo-chamber. I agree with you that it is nothing of the sort. If anything, the problem is the opposite; the regulars are too ready to turn on each other over political or scientific disagreements.

    Interesting that you chose only that segment of my comment to reply to, as it was probably the only part of it not directed at you in any way… I never said YOU called it an echo chamber, I was merely expanding on my point of diversity here in the comments.

    As far as the regulars being “too ready to turn on each other over political or scientific disagreements”, I say, good for us! I welcome being challenged if I’m thought wrong, and more than willing to defend myself and engage in discussion over it. I relish being shown to be wrong, and learning from the experience. If I feel the tone directed at me is unwarranted, I’ll address it myself, thanks.

  237. #239 IanM
    January 18, 2010

    I stand justly chastised. I would hardly be swayed by anyone claiming, in the absence of evidence, that Apatosaurus are living in central London.

  238. #240 David Marjanovi?
    January 18, 2010

    Fuck. I had written half of a very long comment, and then I tried to look for a CafePress T-shirt ? CafePress crashes Safari 1.3.2. I hate Apple.

    Maybe Netscape 7.2 can do it? yes, it just pops up within a second. This is the kind of paleontology T-shirt I like, not one with a random green blob on it!

    The geology one is lovely, however :-)

    Also, I got this one for Newtonmas. The anatomically impossible hand posture should indeed be forbidden.

  239. #241 Walton
    January 18, 2010

    Look, everyone. I’m sorry if I’ve seemed pompous or self-important on this thread.

    I’m not naturally funny, or naturally good at “snark”, or naturally socially adept. I do try from time to time, but it rarely succeeds. My MO is to write long-winded, rather repetitive posts setting out my reasoning in detail, and I realise that this bores some people. And I’m also a bit more sensitive and insecure than many people here, and don’t always find it easy to laugh at my own expense. I accept these failings.

    I’m also not entirely sure whether I’m a liberal, a conservative or a libertarian, or an incoherent mixture of all three. And every discussion I’ve started about politics lately has been a complete mess, because I’m no longer really sure where I stand and keep changing my mind, and/or getting trapped into playing devil’s advocate and talking bullshit.

    I’m going to drop this line of conversation now, since it’s going nowhere. I’m sorry if I’ve pissed anyone off. My mind is not working normally today (a friend of mine brought me back some unusual Rwandan coffee from a trip abroad, and it seems to have had a strange effect). :-)

  240. #242 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    January 18, 2010

    The aliens brought me back and dropped me off at this bar. But I could not go to work that day because Bigfoot stole my car.

    I know a mother fucking Bigfoot when I see one.

  241. #243 Matt Penfold
    January 18, 2010

    A while I thought Walton was showing signs of maturity and was learning to overcome his libertarian inclinations. Since Christmas though he seems to have taken a few steps backwards in his progress to becoming a fully paid up member of the human species.

  242. #244 Darren Garrison
    January 18, 2010

    This reminds me of an argument I got into in another of my haunts last year:

    http://www.obakemono.com/cgi-bin/yabb/YaBB.cgi?board=monsters;action=display;num=1213821146

  243. #245 Sven DiMilo
    January 18, 2010

    sasquatch’s favorite tunes 2, w/ excellent vid:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sUOXgL4rvYk

  244. #246 Blind Squirrel FCD
    January 18, 2010

    The ferrous wheel graphic goes back at least 40 years.

    BS

  245. #247 Stephen Wells
    January 18, 2010

    Walton, you are allowed to, you know, _not_ make tedious long-winded posts setting out your current incoherent opinions. Relax a while. Read a bit. Drink either more or less coffee, as appropriate.

  246. #248 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    January 18, 2010

    Be sure to pour some Cream in your coffee. It will cure what’s inside of you.

  247. #249 Antiochus Epiphanes
    January 18, 2010

    Walton: The real world requires all that crap about civility, patience, concern for the feelings of others, etc. To have a long standing productive community/work/family relationship, these little rules of courtesy are important.

    However, following these rules is tedious for some people. The “style over substance” world is a place where many bright and useful people are clearly at a disadvantage. Blogs like this are popular partially because they give people an opportunity to communicate in a way that’s honest.

    Some people are advised on job interviews to “just be themselves”. My post-doc advisor gave me some great advice before a job interview and it was this “Man, just be yourself, but maybe a little nicer”…which I did, and I guess it worked. However, doing that all the time is such a goddamned strain. I prefer the company of the vitrioloic and foulmouthed, so I can relax. I like all the nice people, too, but I might be less interested in reading this blog if everyone behaved themselves all the time.

    If I may quote George Carlin: “Rat shit, bat shit, dirty old twat. 69 assholes tied in a knot. Lizard! Shit! Fuck!”

  248. #250 Sven DiMilo
    January 18, 2010

    [this is where I refuse on ethical grounds to link to Kenny Loggins]

  249. #251 Celtic_Evolution
    January 18, 2010

    My mind is not working normally today (a friend of mine brought me back some unusual Rwandan coffee from a trip abroad, and it seems to have had a strange effect). :-)

    I have to say, Walton, I was truly surprised to see your tone-concern post… I do hope it was just one of those “I’m having a shit-poor day” streams of thought…

  250. #252 Alan B
    January 18, 2010

    # Lynna

    You could always try Earl Grey tea. I know it’s only oil of bergamot but it might hold you between your fixes of orange. Alternatively, there’s always Grand Marnier!

    Tasting Notes

    Colour
    Beautiful, reddish-gold with light amber on the rim.

    Aroma
    Rich nose of aged cognac with background notes of cocoa, cinnamon and other spices.

    Flavour
    Macerated bitter orange flavours enriched by notes of coffee, honey, bitter almonds and spices.
    The finish is long and complex.

    OR Cointreau:

    A perfect marriage between sweet and bitter orange peels.
    Ready to meet the strength of the crystal clear spirit, are baskets laden with sun-dried orange peels, their intricate colors defining different orange flavors; greenish-bronze for bitter, orangey-red for sweet which yield a greater fruit intensity. Their heady fragrance will soon be revealed by the next steps. The peels are fully dried, macerated and finally distilled in gloriously burnished red copper stills to extract every drop of the precious essential oils. The other ingredients (alcohol, sugar and water) ? which are also completely natural ? give the liqueur its creamy roundness and aromatic vigor in its mouth-feel. Like an intimate secret, the recipe itself is jealously guarded.

  251. #253 Strangest brew
    January 18, 2010

    Seriously challenged possibility from beginnings to endings methinks!

    A hominid striding around…looking for all the world like a six footer give or take a pair socks in the backwoods of beyond!

    A gait looking more like an attempt at retaining some upright dignity rather then traipsing to grandma’s house as ya do!
    Obviously humanoid development of the pelvic structure and swinging arms to boot.

    A side branch of Australopithecus…Neanderthalis…
    anyway before Homo sapiens got the modern act together…yeah right…(Not)
    More like a renegade from a seedy Charlton Heston B-flick!
    And talking about prising cold dead fingers and all that machismo this tangs of prising cold dead inanity and all that fandango from a Blair Witch wannabee clip!

  252. #254 PZ Myers
    January 18, 2010

    Mythusmage: DO NOT EVER TRY TO PRETEND TO BE ME. That kind of attempt to confuse issues and play identity games will get you banned.

  253. #255 Walton
    January 18, 2010

    Stephen, I don’t always do the sensible thing. You should know this by now. :-)

    Arrgh. I feel really stressed for no reason. I need to go to the gym. Over Christmas and New Year I was going for 5km runs several times a week, and I’m currently rather addicted to exercise and become unhappy and irritable if I don’t do any. (I’m told there’s a biological reason for this; something to do with production of chemicals in the brain?)

  254. #256 Celtic_Evolution
    January 18, 2010

    If I may quote George Carlin: “Rat shit, bat shit, dirty old twat. 69 assholes tied in a knot. Hooray! Lizard! Shit! Fuck!”

    Fixed. Sorry.

    /pedant

  255. #257 Antiochus Epiphanes
    January 18, 2010

    Celtic E: Thanks. Hate to misquote a comical genius.

  256. #258 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    January 18, 2010

    Mythusmage: DO NOT EVER TRY TO PRETEND TO BE ME. That kind of attempt to confuse issues and play identity games will get you banned.

    PZ, anyone who could not smell Mythusmage’s stream of shit is going to be easily mislead anyways. That was the last act of a fool who was out matched by every regular that interacted with him last night.

  257. #259 Bobber
    January 18, 2010

    Walton:

    As a constant reader, and infrequent commenter, to this blog, and a person who would rather avoid unpleasant confrontations than seek them out, I think I understand where you are coming from.

    However, when you hear (uhm, read) angry and insulting words, it’s important to have an idea of what it is that motivates the use of such words. For example, I know many people who refused to listen to comedians like George Carlin simply because he used such “filthy” language – which is one of the reasons Carlin, a student of the use of language, spoke the way he did in his act. He wanted to cut through any niceties, he wanted to shock people into paying attention, and he was a contrarian par excellence. Did this turn some people off? Of course – but I would say (without a shred of empirical evidence, mind you) that those same people would have been turned off by his overall message anyway.

    Do regular Pharyngula commenters sometimes wax profane and personal? Sure. But ask yourself why? If I may use another example to illustrate my point, this one from personal experience:

    When I taught in a public school, I needed to explain the same material, over and over again, to people (students) who were generally ignorant (in terms of their not knowing the information I was imparting) and who often asked the same questions, also over and over again, stemming from that ignorance. Do you have any idea the kind of frustration that builds up during even a single day of this? (In my opinion, one must be extraordinarily patient to be a teacher.)

    Now, most of the regulars here – very intelligent people, many of them teachers in their own right – see the same arguments, again presented from ignorance, over and over again. The level of frustration only increases when people try to speak authoritatively on subjects they can be demonstrably shown to be not only ignorant of, but willfully ignorant of.

    As usual, I can’t be pithy, so here’s the point I’m trying to make: taking offense at the tone of some of the commenters here ignores not only the substance of what they are trying to say, but also the fact that many of them are actually, in my opinion, arguing in good faith – they really are trying to point people to information (and often include links or references to sources). Do they sometimes do that rudely? Sure. But generally speaking, on this board, those who object to the tone of the commenters (you excluded) aren’t going to be convinced by nicely-worded arguments either.

    And to this:

    But I would argue that it is unnecessary to attack people simply because they have wrong ideas

    This must be qualified. Again referring to my former students, the level of frustration is tempered by the fact of their being ignorant. But when confronted with willful ignorance, I don’t blame people for letting the nastiness fly. Would you not agree that there is a definite difference between the two?

  258. #260 Lynna, OM
    January 18, 2010

    National Geographic focuses on polygamists:
    http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2010/02/polygamists/anderson-text/1
    Good photos, as one would expect. You can certainly see the spectacular proposed wilderness area that is north of Colorado City/Hilldale on the Utah/Arizona Border. This is the community that my brother Leland and I drove through looking for trailheads that led up onto the plateau.

    It looks like Nat Geo got inside access that is rare. Excerpt:

    At the memorial service for Foneta, her husband and three sons give testimonials praising her commitment to the covenant of plural marriage, but there is an undertone of family disharmony, with vague references by Merril Jessop to his troubled relationship with Foneta. No one need mention that one of Merril’s wives is missing. Carolyn Jessop, his fourth wife, left the household in 2003 with her eight children and went on to write a best-selling book on her life as an FLDS member. She describes a cloistered environment and tells of a deeply unhappy Foneta, an overweight recluse who fell out of favor with her husband and slept her days away, coming out of her room only at night to eat, do laundry, and watch old Shirley Temple movies on television.
         At the conclusion of the service, most of the congregation walk over to the Isaac Carling cemetery for a graveside observance. I assume the enormous turnout?mourners have come in from FLDS communities in Texas, Colorado, and British Columbia?stems from the prominent position Foneta’s husband holds: Merril Jessop is an FLDS leader and the bishop of the large chapter in West Texas. But Sam Steed, a soft-spoken, 37-year-old accountant acting as my guide, explains that elaborate funerals are a regular occurrence. “Probably between 15 and 20 times a year,” he says. “This one is maybe a little bigger than most, but even when a young child dies, you can expect three or four thousand people to attend. It’s part of what keeps us together. It reminds us we’re members of this larger community. We draw strength from each other.”

  259. #261 Sven DiMilo
    January 18, 2010

    I am glad that others with saintlier patiences and more sparsely populated killfiles were on hand to note Walton’s concern.

  260. #262 Knockgoats
    January 18, 2010

    some unusual Rwandan coffee – Walton

    Hmm, I haven’t heard it called that before!

  261. #263 Walton
    January 18, 2010

    Knockgoats: You what?

    The substance to which I refer is, in fact, coffee. From Rwanda. I was not making a veiled reference to illegal narcotics, sex, or anything else that might merit the use of a euphemism. I’m not that imaginative, nor is my life that exciting.

    Just to make this entirely clear.

  262. #264 Walton
    January 18, 2010

    (Addendum to #263: It hadn’t even occurred to me that someone would read my post in that way. Apparently I’m rather naive. Note to self: think more carefully before posting.)

  263. #265 boygenius
    January 18, 2010

    Yikes! I believe that’s the first time I’ve ever seen the Overlord type in allcaps. I felt a slight twinge of guilt and I didn’t even do anything wrong. (Aside from that little morse-code episode. Nothing happened and it will never happen again.)

  264. #266 Focus
    January 18, 2010

    # 263 Walton
    “My mind is not working normally today (a friend of mine brought me back some unusual Rwandan coffee from a trip abroad, and it seems to have had a strange effect). :-)”

    If coffee has strange effects on you and it is not a strange coffee, you would be wise to visit an MD. Just being concerned…

  265. #267 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    January 18, 2010

    Walton, seeing that you cannot pick up on all of the humor used by the regulars, I am almost afraid to find out what you do find to be funny.

  266. #268 Walton
    January 18, 2010

    I was joking about the coffee having strange effects. I’m just a bit stressed and fed up with work (and, as I said earlier, I really want to go to the gym and haven’t been in two days). Nothing suspicious, weird or medically worrying.

    I’m going to stop posting on this thread now, as this is degenerating into silliness. Please, go back to talking about bacon and Bigfoot, or whatever it is you were all discussing before.

  267. #269 Celtic_Evolution
    January 18, 2010

    A side branch of Australopithecus… Neanderthalis…

    Reminds me of a really bad work of fiction I read some years ago… a book called Neanderthal by John Darnton.

    Interesting premise, bad science as I recall. But a fairly entertaining read, all in all.

  268. #270 PaleGreenPants
    January 18, 2010

    But silliness is what I come for!

    Well, that and the roasting Christians….tasty.

  269. #271 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    January 18, 2010

    I’m going to stop posting on this thread now, as this is degenerating into silliness.

    Silliness is not a form of degeneration. Dem’s fighting words. I will have to dispatch Bigfoot to find you and bury you in bacon. But only after Bigfoot forces you to consume two pots of Rwandan coffee.

    Oh, wait, this could be more messy than silly.

  270. #272 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 18, 2010

    Blind Squirrel, you are correct. I have confused scat/skat. Ah, the problems of spelling seldom used words phonetically in English…

    Walton, most of the discussion on this thread has to do with the quality of evidence in order to be considered conclusive. It would be a very good read for you, as it is something you do need to be aware of. For example, the anti-AGW arguments are like MM’s sasquatch evidence. Looks on the surface to be something there, but when looked are harder, the holes appear, and a possible hoax is present. Compare that to the level of evidence we scientists want to conclude sasquatch exists. It isn’t a real high bar, since a live animal isn’t required, but it does require hard evidence with preferably some DNA present to confirm where sasquatch would appear in the tree of life. This evidence could be published in the scientific literature. Which gives one a bit more confidence in the conclusions than something from a web site.

  271. #273 Sven DiMilo
    January 18, 2010

    I love Doonesbury.

    Bacon T-shirts:
    h**p://www.snorgtees.com/baconmakeseverythingbetter-p-758.html
    h**p://www.snorgtees.com/youhadmeatbacon-p-916.html
    h**p://www.snorgtees.com/bisforbacon-p-1007.html

    and paleontologically, the trike on a trike one is sorta funny once.

  272. #274 Sven DiMilo
    January 18, 2010

    I love Doonesbury.

    Stoopid bacon T-shirts:
    snorgtees.com/baconmakeseverythingbetter-p-758.html
    youhadmeatbacon-p-916.html
    bisforbacon-p-1007.html

    and paleontologically, the trike on a trike one is sorta funny once.

    Point of info: trying to disguise links by replacing the Ts in ‘http’ with asterisks will get you moderated anyway.

  273. #275 Sven DiMilo
    January 18, 2010
  274. #276 Alan B
    January 18, 2010

    Lynna (Molly thread)

    Thank you for the Honorary Membership of the Wild Women of Pharyngula.

    I hope I can live down to the privilege!

  275. #277 SEF
    January 18, 2010

    go back to talking about bacon and Bigfoot

    So… do sasquatch taste like bacon?

  276. #278 Knockgoats
    January 18, 2010

    Walton@263,

    I was joking! Sorry, when I joke with you, I’ll be sure to include a smiley! ;-)

    BTW, if you’re going to be addicted to anything, exercise is about the best – recent work indicates that athletes who exercise hard over decades age more slowly (can’t find the ref. just now, but it stimulates production of telomerase and so slows telomere shortening).

  277. #279 a_ray_in_dilbert_space
    January 18, 2010

    Walton,
    Every culture has its norms. Pharyngula is an evidence-based culture. Unbridled speculation presented without evidence will generally not be well received here.

    What is more, Pharyngula attracts a very broad spectrum of people, so if you are knocking your pud on a particular subject, you’ll have a hard time keeping that a secret. Post bullshit about biology, evolution, etc. and any number of posters got your backside, which they will be happy to kick for you. Post woo about the 2nd law of Thermo or quantum mechanics or cosmology, I will be happy to politely tear you a brand new and fully functional asshole. Geology? Chemistry? Anthropology? Archaeology? Biblical Scholarship? Got you covered with biting sarcasm in response to all bullshit and woo.

    When I post woo, I want you guys to call me on it. Keep me fucking honest, goddammit. And if you can do it with a little bit of humor at my expense, so much the better. I’m a big boy. I’ll get over it.

    I don’t know if you have noticed, but Pharyngula is a rather unique oasis on the intertubes. PZ has a very light hand here–unedited commenting, removing only complete idiots like GWIAS. Have you looked in on other unmonitored sites of late? The idiots have taken over completely. Anything to do with climate science is immediately dismissed by half a dozen idjits. Evolution? The creationists are on it like white on rice. Here, they are free to try, but usually retreat from the hornet’s nest fairly quickly.

    If it comes down to a choice between civility and a bullshit-free oasis, I’ll kiss off civility.

  278. #280 Walton
    January 18, 2010

    OK, I’m going to the gym now. I was intending to start an essay this afternoon, but have been completely and utterly unable to concentrate (and may have to stay up all night later in the week to get it done). I don’t know quite what’s wrong with me today.

  279. #281 Celtic_Evolution
    January 18, 2010

    I don’t know quite what’s wrong with me today.

    Some days you just wake up grumpy… go sweat it off… you’ll feel better.

    I know that my twice a week volleyball matches almost always erase my pissier moods. I think it’s the release of competitive aggression in addition to the pure workout, though…

  280. #282 Alan B
    January 18, 2010

    #248 Janine etc.

    Much to my surprise, I really enjoyed that Cream song. Thanks for putting it up. Was the lead guitarist Eric Clapton?

  281. #283 David Marjanovi?
    January 18, 2010

    So? two comments after I write “I can see the next thread coming on the horizon”, exactly that happens. I seem to be getting good at this.

    I’d also like to point to this blog post about the Patterson/Gimlin film again, though neither it nor the comments mention the admission by Heironimus.

    (?Heironimus? Seriously? Is that the fault of some moron on Ellis Island?)

    what does “articulated to associated” mean? is that about how well the bones stayed together as they were when the critter was alive?

    Exactly. “Associated” means that the bones of one individual form one single heap, “articulated” means the bones stay together like in life.

    The geology one is lovely, however :-)

    The one that Jadehawk suggested to Alan B and Josh in comment 154.

    Frankly sir, it doesn’t really matter what I present in the way of evidence, because you show no sign you’d would even give it due consideration. I could present you with a fucking corpse, and you would call it false.

    <sigh>

    Can’t you see it’s a parsimony argument?

    Opinions disagree as to how easy it would be for a population of big apes to hide in that kind of forest; there are no bones; the Patterson/Gimlin film has come into doubt; footprints can be faked; and so on. Can you really not see why so many people conclude the most parsimonious hypothesis is that there simply is no sasquatch?

    At the same time, falsification trumps parsimony. A corpse would convince everyone, or at the very least everyone on this thread. Do you really not understand this?

    Such as scat for instance. Google “bigfoot scat” and you’ll find pictures purporting to show sasquatch shit. Now google “bear scat” and compare those pictures with the reported bigfoot scat pictures. I just don’t see how one could confuse bear shit with sasquatch shit, unless one was obsessed in denying sasquatch.

    Hang on a second.

    We have sasquatch crap?

    Where the fuck is the Sasquatch Fucking Genome Project?!?!?

    Here’s the best version btw.

    Really? I remember seeing one on TV that was? like? in color and stuff. I’m also told much higher resolution is available.

    Here is a color version, with a part taken out and played backwards and forwards several times at the end of the video.
    youtube.com/watch?v=IJjUt2sXo5o&feature=related

    Also? youtube.com/watch?v=r5tvXoGQ4UI&feature=related

    Bob Heironimus passes lie detector test:

    <facepalm>

    The lie detector measures whether you’re excited. Not whether you’re lying. If you can lie in cold blood, it’ll let you pass. If you say the truth, but are scared, it’ll convict you.

    That’s why it’s forbidden to use this thing in court in much or all of Europe.

    i still refuse to believe bigfoot actually exists.

    why? because the self-proclaimed bigfoot experts don’t either.

    you know how i know? because i’ve seen hours upon hours of them out in the woods hunting for the thing. and if they actually seriously believed that there was a 8-foot tall, 500-lb, potentially dangerous wild animal in the area, they would bring fucking rifles.

    “Potentially dangerous”? it’s said to be rather on the shy side of things, and I don’t think anyone has ever claimed to have been attacked by a bigfoot.

    There are bears in those places, and if they aren’t dangerous enough to warrant carrying rifles around, the sasquatches sure ain’t!

    a sort of fable that serves as a warning to children (in the case of Sasquatch the moral is to not venture off in the woods alone)

    Bears.

    Why would anyone need to invent yet another incentive for children not to run off into those woods?

    Here is a video of Bob H walking with bigfoot from the Patterson video along side. youtube.com/watch?v=HCzRBzBmUjE

    He stretches his knees. The Alleged Sasquatch doesn’t ever do that. Also, his arms are shorter (TAS has arms more like mine).

    Why is the face on Bob’s costume so stiff, when Patty’s face is so expressive.

    You can see the face? In that video? What have you smoked???

    One more thing before I go — for I am getting a bit worn out: Can you be sure, truly sure, I’m not PZ Myers doing this to hype Pharyngula and increase traffic?

    What do you mean by “truly sure”? You’re hardly increasing traffic, as anyone could have guessed; and what comes through of your thought patterns is completely consistent with your previous behavior and quite different from PZ’s. By far the most parsimonious hypothesis, thus, is that you’re not PZ. :-|

    many large mammals have spread from Asia to North America via the intermittently-existing Beringia land-bridge.

    But then reports of it and physical evidence of it would have to match that route (as well as each other!).

    Why would the reports have to match that route?

    Of the physical evidence, only the so far entirely absent fossil bones would have to match it.

    Sasquatsch

    :-D

    Pharyngula has a serious cultural problem, due to this ingrained idea that tone and politeness do not matter.

    It’s frustration.

    We’ve all seen it before so often ? the arguments listed in the Index to Creationist Claims and strikingly often in the “Lists of Arguments We Think Creationists Should Not Use” by Answers in Genesis and creation.com. The Dunning-Kruger effect. The logical fallacies. Everything.

    We simply lose our patience after some time. Some sooner (truth machine), some later (Gregory Greenwood), but we all do. We just haven’t undergone the kolinahr.

    Also, different people react to tone in different ways. Some flee at the slightest hint of unpleasantness. Others only take arguments seriously if they’re presented and defended in a way that makes clear the presenter is serious. There are even deconversion stories by people who say they were deconverted by being laughed at. People are too diverse for any one strategy to have the same effect on all.

    If somebody pops up here saying that a film of a guy in an ape suit constitutes good evidence for the existence of a race of giant hominids wandering the USA, they deserve to be mocked.

    The only evidence for a suit being involved is Heironimus’ admission, and the film itself argues against that (see the first link in this comment, and this: youtube.com/watch?v=r5tvXoGQ4UI&feature=related). If it’s faked, it could be a rather oddly proportioned guy with thin strips of fur glued to his body, but a suit would be very difficult to square with the film.

    Someone should try to remake the Patterson/Gimlin film with someone who has bacon glued to their nipples strips of fur glued everywhere. Has never been tried. Remaking it with a guy in a suit has been tried several times, and looks pathetic each time.

    To save David M the trouble, yes I do know the argument about the ć dipthong / ligature.

    I don’t know what you mean. Anyway, biological nomenclature is fixed (Palaeotis, but Paleothyris, because that’s how they were spelled in the original publications), and the rest is left to everyone’s preferences.

    (?And a diphthong is one vowel transitioning to another so that both fit in the same syllable. That’s a matter of phonetics, not of spelling. Almost every English “long” vowel is a diphthong; ć isn’t.)

    I think I would have to come up with some new swear words to describe the situation if the Overlord instituted a Policy of Politeness (PoP).

    If anything, the problem is the opposite; the regulars are too ready to turn on each other over political or scientific disagreements.

    But? but? we are scientists. We have SIWOTI syndrome. We won’t let our friends keep being demonstrably wrong ? that would be a serious disservice to them!

    See comment 238.

  282. #284 Lynna, OM
    January 18, 2010

    Alan B, (@252), I will try some Earl Grey tea for my afternoon tea. Good idea. Though the Grand Marnier sounds more appealing. :)

  283. #285 Jadehawk, OM
    January 18, 2010

    I know you wanted the subject dropped, but I feel the urge to comment on it anyway:

    for one, those religionists and creationists who come here with honest questions get honest and polite responses; see , for example. It’s only those that come here making arrogant, offensive claims and insult us that get the same thrown at them. And their lack of use of certain words doesn’t make them polite, just passive-aggressive.

    secondly, from experience of many discussion threads with creationists I can say that those posters who remain polite (by the creobots definition) aren’t listened to, either; they merely risk being proselytized at.

    thirdly, even out in meatspace, politeness is not always the way to go. This may be less of an issue in Britain where atheists aren’t a minority that’s rather heavily discriminated against, but it certainly matters in the US. We’ve had quite a few discussions about how demands for politeness from the oppressors are just a way to put the Uppity [place minority here] down. The accomodationist approach doesn’t show any more success than the confrontational one, as far as I can see.

    forthly, religionists confuse politeness with immunity from criticism; they’ll be just as offended, insulted etc as they are by our choice of words. just remember the various reactions to the Atheist Bus campaigns! The religionists were offended! the atheists were attacking their faith! they were being intolerant! so yeah, being more polite with them isn’t gonna help; what they really want is for us to shup up and sit down.

  284. #286 Jadehawk, OM
    January 18, 2010

    oh look, weird link-fail. oh well, nothing essential got cut out, and the link works.

    *goes off to find more hot tea with honey*

  285. #287 PaleGreenPants
    January 18, 2010

    @282

    Them’s alot of words.

  286. #288 Sven DiMilo
    January 18, 2010

    I remember seeing one on TV that was? like? in color and stuff.

    For the purpose of getting a look at the animal, the image stabilization is much more useful than the color IMO. All of these versions are zoomed way in, btw, (here os the original clip) and I seriously doubt that much higher resolution could be coaxed out of 8mm film. (even 16).

  287. #289 Alan B
    January 18, 2010

    #234 Antiochus Epiphanes said:

    … a number of you (Alan B, Josh, David M, Dania et al.) provided informative responses, and I felt like I was getting a miniseminar in geology. It was delightful.

    I don’t think I’ve ever been called delightful before!!

    Thinking of putting up a Kemist’s Korner* as soon as I can write it. There may be some more Geology and YEC faux geology in this incarnation of “The Thread”.

    *Can you explain how salt works in melting ice and in freezing ice cream? I think I can explain it – unless everybody knows … If you can – give us a chance first – you can always tear it apart later.

  288. #290 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    January 18, 2010

    Frankly sir, it doesn’t really matter what I present in the way of evidence, because you show no sign you’d would even give it due consideration. I could present you with a fucking corpse, and you would call it false.

    Who is acting like a creationist again?

  289. #291 Lynna, OM
    January 18, 2010

    Rorschach @225

    To the question of how to react to tone trolls, outside Pharyngula and in the public domain, I have no definitive answer, it remains a problem as long as so many people really think the truth value of a statement changes with the number of swear words it contains.

    There’s lots of advise about how to deal with grizzly bear encounters. Most of it includes being polite, as in backing away slowly, giving way on trails, not making eye contact, speaking softly, etc. But if a bear has an impacted tooth or otherwise got up on the wrong side of den, you had better stand your ground with a gun or pepper spray because nothing is going to appease the beast. Because the beast is stronger, you need numbers of humans with you to even the odds, or you need a weapon such as knowledge — you need to watch for telltale signs, like chuffing, teeth-clacking, head-swinging, or the laying back of ears.

    Every bear is different. They are individuals. There are no definitive answers. You judge the individual to the best of your ability and respond accordingly.

    Little, polite warning bells do not work for any bears, do not work at all, nada — it’s a myth. Another myth is that most bears run from human. I’ve had personal encounters, close encounters, with 13 bears. Less than half ran away.

    Interactions with black bears are usually different from interactions with grizzly bears. Know your bears. Adjust your avoidance and survival techniques according to the bear(s) in question, and according to the situation/environment. You can’t back so far down that you fall off a cliff.

    Well, that extended analogy got out of hand. [slinks off]

  290. #292 Sven DiMilo
    January 18, 2010

    [insert old joke about black vs. brown bear scat here]

  291. #293 David Marjanovi?
    January 18, 2010

    I do try from time to time, but it rarely succeeds.

    That one did succeed, though. Don’t try to be snarky when you don’t feel like it ? but when you feel like it, let nothing hold you back.

    I’m told there’s a biological reason for this; something to do with production of chemicals in the brain?

    Do you seriously get runner’s high? That would be endorphines to make you stop feeling the pain and the exhaustion.

  292. #294 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    January 18, 2010

    I find some bears to be quite enjoyable.

  293. #295 Sven DiMilo
    January 18, 2010

    watch out Walton…those endorphins to which you are addicted are binding to opiate receptors…you’re getting a whisper of a heroin buzz there…careful now…

  294. #296 SEF
    January 18, 2010

    @ David Marjanovi? #282:

    Genome Project

    When I was looking on the interwebz earlier, I came across a claim that fur had been found from two individuals (black and brown) which allegedly didn’t match known life-forms and yet somehow didn’t have enough DNA for any sequencing to be done. Not particularly impressive.

    Why would the reports have to match that route?

    If it bimbled through pre humans, the reports (pretty much nonexistant at the moment!) of finds (fossils, graves, tools or whatever) would have to match it. If it bimbled through with or post humans, then the human legend reports would have to reflect that.

  295. #297 Feynmaniac
    January 18, 2010

    Walton,

    I was not making a veiled reference to illegal narcotics, sex, or anything else that might merit the use of a euphemism.

    That sentence alone proves you desperately need to try at least one of those things, ;).

  296. #298 Lynna, OM
    January 18, 2010

    @188

    I knew I wouldn’t have to wait long for Bigfoot to disprove the Laramide Orogeny.

    lol — funny enough to read several times. I do loves me some whimsical jokes that require insider knowledge of geology.

  297. #299 A. Noyd
    January 18, 2010

    Lynna (#212)

    The heated scents out of the dryers are the worst. Someone will eventually discover how bad they are, and that they trigger allergies. Outlaw them, I say.

    Oh, hell yes. And the plug in air fresheners, too. They don’t work to cover up smells unless you count making me stuffed up by setting off my allergies.

    ~*~*~*~*~*~

    Celtic_Evolution (#238)

    If I feel the tone directed at me is unwarranted, I’ll address it myself, thanks.

    Pretty much the crux of it, if you ask me. If people have a problem with tone, they can point it out. When they do, often as not, they’re focusing on the presence of insults and swear words while being just as condescending and disrespectful themselves. Some merely are upset by people getting the verbal better of them and want to level the playing field. And then there are the Karen Armstrongs who thinks pretending all sides have something worth saying, even in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary, makes talking about nonsense less pointless.

    Given that offense is so personal, it might be an interesting study to see how on highly moderated message boards the censorship evolved to suit the collective sense of propriety. Or how much censorship vs. permissiveness influences the tone threshold of contributors to various blogs/boards. Do people here get less sensitive? Does hyper-moderation make people more sensitive? Etc.

    ~*~*~*~*~*~

    Walton (#264)

    Apparently I’m rather naive. Note to self: think more carefully before posting.

    Where’s the fun in that?

  298. #300 David Marjanovi?
    January 18, 2010

    I know you wanted the subject dropped, but I feel the urge to comment on it anyway:

    See, Walton? SIWOTI syndrome. ^_^

    Them’s alot of words.

    Bah, just over 5 screens. I’ve written many ten-screeners. That’s just what happens when I reply to an entire thread at once.

    Can you explain how salt works in melting ice and in freezing ice cream?

    Yes?

  299. #301 Lynna, OM
    January 18, 2010

    David M @240

    I got this one for Newtonmas. The anatomically impossible hand posture should indeed be forbidden.

    I love the T-shirt! lol. want badly. Is that you in the photo? The guy does have a big nose. ~:-)

  300. #302 Celtic_Evolution
    January 18, 2010

    Can you explain how salt works in melting ice and in freezing ice cream?

    Yes?

    Hehe… sometimes it’s the simplest jokes that give me the best chuckles…

  301. #303 David Marjanovi?
    January 18, 2010

    I came across a claim that fur had been found from two individuals (black and brown) which allegedly didn’t match known life-forms and yet somehow didn’t have enough DNA for any sequencing to be done. Not particularly impressive.

    Could depend on the mode of preservation? dried, sun-bleached, moldy, whatever? But hairs alone can be identified down to species by just looking at them under a microscope. If that had been done, had found a new species, and had been published, I’d know about it :-)

  302. #304 Jadehawk, OM
    January 18, 2010

    I love the T-shirt! lol. want badly. Is that you in the photo? The guy does have a big nose. ~:-)

    not him. and I know this because there is a photo of David M floating out there in the depths of the internet [/creepy]

  303. #305 Celtic_Evolution
    January 18, 2010

    Wait…

    Ok… I lost the pace of the conversation, there… I thought David M was answering the question affirmatively and then leaving off the explanation intentionally to be funny… re-reading the conversation between them, I’m not sure it was intended as such…

    Oh well, I thought it was funny anyhow.

  304. #306 Lynna, OM
    January 18, 2010

    Alan B

    Lynna (Molly thread)
    Thank you for the Honorary Membership of the Wild Women of Pharyngula.
    I hope I can live down to the privilege!

    Practice, Alan B. Practice!

  305. #307 Lynna, OM
    January 18, 2010

    Janine, thanks for the Cream. You had me getting out the actual vinyl and cranking up an actual turntable. Nobody beats Cream.

  306. #308 David Marjanovi?
    January 18, 2010

    Is that you in the photo? The guy does have a big nose. ~:-)

    No, the hair color is all wrong, and, erm, all the rest is, too :-)

    there is a photo of David M floating out there in the depths of the internet [/creepy]

    I feel honestly flattered that you have bothered to look for one.

    But <reaching through intert00bz, grabbing Jadehawk by shoulders, and shaking her> you must tell me where it is! :-) I have no idea where there could be one. I just double-checked: the only halfway logical place lacks one.

  307. #309 SEF
    January 18, 2010

    But hairs alone can be identified down to species by just looking at them under a microscope.

    I know – I was the one who said so on the previous incarnation of the thread! That’s why the absence of proper publication for everyone to see (regardless of any DNA failure) is so unimpressive.

  308. #310 David Marjanovi?
    January 18, 2010

    re-reading the conversation between them, I’m not sure it was intended as such…

    It wasn’t. I did leave the response off deliberately, but that’s because of the “give us a chance first” part.

    ?Not that I understand why Alan B speaks of himself in the plural, though.

  309. #311 Jadehawk, OM
    January 18, 2010

    But #&60;reaching through intert00bz, grabbing Jadehawk by shoulders, and shaking her> you must tell me where it is! :-) I have no idea where there could be one. I just double-checked: the only halfway logical place lacks one.

    pffft, and deprive any other potential cyberstalkers of the pleasure of finding it? I think not :-p

  310. #312 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    January 18, 2010

    ?Not that I understand why Alan B speaks of himself in the plural, though.

    Gollum speaks of himself in the plural. Could have Alan B lost his precious?

  311. #313 Carlie
    January 18, 2010

    There are too many David Marjanovi?s on the web! How do we know which one is him? This will take a little work…

  312. #314 Jadehawk, OM
    January 18, 2010

    ?Not that I understand why Alan B speaks of himself in the plural, though.

    maybe he’s including Ed?

  313. #315 Jadehawk, OM
    January 18, 2010

    There are too many David Marjanovi?s on the web! How do we know which one is him? This will take a little work…

    n00b

    ok, I’ll stop bragging about my stalkerific google-fu now :-p

  314. #316 David Marjanovi?
    January 18, 2010

    pffft, and deprive any other potential cyberstalkers of the pleasure of finding it? I think not :-p

    No, seriously, drop me an e-mail. I want to know if it’s really me, and how old it is, that kind of thing.

    maybe he’s including Ed?

    Oh, that makes sense.

    There are too many David Marjanovi?s on the web! How do we know which one is him?

    Srsly?

    OK, there is a guy with my name at the same bank who lives in southern France, but apart from that? My surname isn’t especially rare in Croatia, Bosnia and Serbia, but my first name is, so the combination shouldn’t be common.

  315. #317 Lynna, OM
    January 18, 2010

    As, everybody knows by now, not only are the mormons anal-retentive when it comes to controlling their members, they also think they can control the actions of people leaving their church.

    There’s a great post on exmormon.org today that includes some telling details about how frustrating the procedure can be when members try to leave the LDS Church. Basically, the church’s head honchos will do anything to get enough information to send the local Bishop and Stake President gunning for your hide, umm, to talk things over with you. Excerpts:

    Although the Notice only provided you/LDS Inc. with my middle initial ?X?, your acknowledgment letter addressed me by my full name, ?Jacyn XXXXX XXXXXXX.? Obviously you were able to locate LDS Inc.?s record of my former membership with the information I did provide and your claims to the contrary are disingenuous….Incidentally Mr. Dodge, I am no longer a member of LDS Inc. and thus not your sister.
         Govern yourself accordingly,

  316. #318 Carlie
    January 18, 2010

    David – actually, it is fairly common – you don’t seem like a Facebook kind of guy, but there are 7 of you there already. :)
    Jadehawk – I’m sure I could narrow it down fairly easily, just haven’t put in the effort. I was just surprised that so many dopplegängers showed up.

  317. #319 Walton
    January 18, 2010

    I’ve now been to the gym and run two miles on the treadmill, and feel somewhat better.

    Sorry to anyone I annoyed earlier. Today has not been my day. I intended to start work on an essay, which I have not done due to procrastinating all afternoon.

  318. #320 Paul
    January 18, 2010

    People are still surprised when Walton gets his feelings hurt and posts another concern trolling screed? Just because it only happens every month or so doesn’t mean it’s a surprise when it happens…

  319. #321 Alan B
    January 18, 2010

    #282 David Marjanovi?

    The Concise Oxford Dictionary, Ninth Edition, definition of “diphthong*”:

    1. a speech sound in one syllable in which the articulation begins as for one vowel and moves towards another (as in coin, loud and side).

    2a. a diagraph representing the sound of a diphthong or single vowel (as in feat)

    2b. a compound vowel character; a ligature (as ć)

    * Your spelling is correct, mine was in error.

    I was using the word diphthong in the sense of 2b.

  320. #322 Carlie
    January 18, 2010

    Found one! Not a great shot, though. Too dark and far away. Could be a different one than Jadehawk found.

  321. #323 SEF
    January 18, 2010

    Is this like hunting for a sasquatch?! Do we get to compare fur, gait and DNA samples next to determine which are the real ones?

  322. #324 David Marjanovi?
    January 18, 2010

    Contender for the best paper title of 2003:

    Yang Ziheng & Anne D. Yoder: Comparison of likelihood and Bayesian methods for estimating divergence times using multiple gene loci and calibration points, with application to a radiation of cute-looking mouse lemur species, Systematic Biology 52(5), 705?716

    Disappointingly, however, all three figures show unadorned cladograms. :-(

    you don’t seem like a Facebook kind of guy, but there are 7 of you there already. :)

    <headdesk>

    You’re right, I’m not a Facebook member and don’t intend to ever join either it or Myspace or anything similar.

    Concise Oxford Dictionary

    Interesting. Never encountered sense 2 before.

    (I do hope 2a says “digraph” rather than “diagraph”, which doesn’t exist?)

    Not a great shot, though. Too dark and far away.

    ~:-|

    There are any photos of me from too far away? Even in meatspace I’m not aware of any.

    Is this like hunting for a sasquatch?! Do we get to compare fur, gait and DNA samples next to determine which are the real ones?

    :-) :-) :-)

    Fur sample.

  323. #325 Sven DiMilo
    January 18, 2010

    New update, unveiling a cleaner, more streamlined, more sophisticated look that I think you’ll like. *wink*

  324. #326 Jadehawk, OM
    January 18, 2010

    Fur sample.

    *giggle*

    I did send you that e-mail, in case you haven’t noticed (or in case gmx once again swallowed it whole and you never got it)

  325. #327 Falafel
    January 18, 2010

    Hello PZ and Pharynguloids!
    long time reader, first time commenter.
    not sure if this is the right thread but lets see.

    I saw PZ’s lecture on design vs chance and i have a question about the Receptor tyrosine kinase (boy it took forever to find how to spell that from listening to PZ).

    if this protein tells cells around it which type of cell they should be, how do the cells connecting the various organs know not to change? how does the kidney for example not grow infinitely?

    i get that whatever mechanism that does this is the one at fault in many (or all?) cases of cancer but i wanted to get some more detail on this.

    i’ll add that i have no real knowledge in biology but my wife does so feel free to go all sciency in your replies :)

    thanks!

    Amir

  326. #328 Alan B
    January 18, 2010

    #323 David Marjanovi?

    Yes, it did say “digraph”. The Rev has been tinkering with my keyboard again.

    I suspect usage 2b will die once those who were taught that meaning at school (probably including the editors of the Oxford Dictionary) have shuffled off this mortal coil. “Ligature” (Printing) 2 or more letters joined is also in the Oxford Concise.

  327. #329 blf
    January 18, 2010

    Antiochus Epiphanes@234:

    Something to add, re blf #186:

    … [T]his sasquatch business is just lame. There really isn’t anything to learn. Or so I thought. Thank you blf for making this thread a worthy read.

    blf to ego, blf to ego, please return to base…

    If you’re trying to wrangle a place to crash in South France, you’re doing a good job.

    Thanks.

  328. #330 Lynna, OM
    January 18, 2010

    @324, very nice, Sven. Even with the ugly vestige, it’s quite clear. I applaud your refusal to bow to the Overlord.

  329. #331 Alan B
    January 18, 2010

    #309 David Marjanovi? said:

    Not that I understand why Alan B speaks of himself in the plural, though.

    Explanations so far:

    #311 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM

    Could have Alan B lost his precious?

    H’m. Lost his precious mind / marbles?

    #313 Jadehawk, OM

    maybe he’s including Ed?

    Ah, this sounds like there could be an element of truth (just an element, not a whole Periodic Table – sorry, chemist’s joke. [Ed. Chemist? Yes. Joke? ...?])

    It’s the royal we, closely followed by the royal flush!

    #309 David Marjanovi? said:

    Not that I understand why Alan B speaks of himself in the plural, though.

    Explanations so far:

    #311 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM

    Could have Alan B lost his precious?

    H’m. Lost his precious mind / marbles?

    #313 Jadehawk, OM

    maybe he’s including Ed?

    Ah, this sounds like there could be an element of truth (just an element, not a whole Periodic Table – sorry, chemist’s joke. [Ed. Chemist? Yes. Joke? ...?])

    TRUE REASONS:

    “Give us a job/quid/money for a Rolls Royce etc., mate” is a common cockney, Eastend of London, expression. Usually aimed at someone of a higher social standing in the hopes that the [higher] other will treat the person with kindness because they are just like them but fallen on hard times.

    OR

    It’s the royal we(e), closely followed by the royal flush!

  330. #332 Sven DiMilo
    January 18, 2010

    did did you you just just say say that that twice? twice?

  331. #333 Alan B
    January 18, 2010

    Ignore previous post.
    Oh dear, Oh dear! Not my day [Ed. But it's his fingers!] Shut up, Ed.

    #309 David Marjanovi? said:

    Not that I understand why Alan B speaks of himself in the plural, though.
    Explanations so far:

    #311 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM

    Could have Alan B lost his precious?
    H’m. Lost his precious mind / marbles?

    #313 Jadehawk, OM

    maybe he’s including Ed?

    Ah, this sounds like there could be an element of truth (just an element, not a whole Periodic Table – sorry, chemist’s joke. [Ed. Chemist? Yes. Joke? ...?])

    TRUE REASONS:

    “Give us a job/quid/money for a Rolls Royce etc., mate” is a common cockney, Eastend of London, expression. Usually aimed at someone of a higher social standing in the hopes that the [higher] other will treat the person with kindness because they are just like them but fallen on hard times.

    OR

    It’s the royal we(e), closely followed by the royal flush!

  332. #334 Carlie
    January 18, 2010

    David – also sent link by email, assuming that was the right address.

  333. #335 aratina cage of the OM
    January 18, 2010

    Very sniny, Sven! I get endless chuckles from the spat you have with the ECO over the anastomosing of The Thread.

  334. #336 blf
    January 18, 2010

    Alan B’s not only lost his marbles, someone’s made them into a voodoo doll and now has control of both Alan and Ed.

  335. #337 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    January 18, 2010

    It’s the royal we(e), closely followed by the royal flush!

    See the glory of the royal scam.

  336. #338 MetzO'Magic
    January 18, 2010

    SEF, hi,

    Hmm. I agree with John Morales that mythusmage is usually a decent commenter. The wife must have put the blue pill in his cereal this morning by mistake.

    I disagree.

    Anyhow, which particular blue pill would that be to give the alleged personality change?

    *Sigh* obscure film reference fail. In which film was the protagonist offered a choice between taking a blue pill and a red pill, and what would have happened had he taken the blue one like mythusmage did this morning?

  337. #339 SEF
    January 18, 2010

    Then I’m going to guess the film’s The Matrix; but I haven’t seen it so I have no idea which pill allegedly did what or even that there was more than one pill and that it was a choice. The other pill references would be literature ones.

  338. #340 aratina cage of the OM
    January 18, 2010

    David Marjanovi?

    Bears.

    Why would anyone need to invent yet another incentive for children not to run off into those woods?

    I’m not sure about the warning thing but it seems to be part of the tale (my perception of it at least) and I offer it as an example of how childish belief in Bigfoot is. Bears are not humanoid enough (can’t throw things or kidnap you) or rare enough in Sasquatch country (no mystery unless the bear is a giant or something peculiar). I’m not sure where you have heard that Sasquatch are peaceful, and I believe that one of unique the things that Harry and the Hendersons did was turn the fear of a Sasquatch attack on its head, making Harry into a gentle giant. You have reminded me of another aspect of the Bigfoot mythos which is the tall tale or the attainment of secret knowledge which pays off well for bullshitters.

  339. #341 Alan B
    January 18, 2010

    #355 blf

    We deny it … don’t we Ed.?
    Ed. Ed. You can’t leave me now … Agh!!
    I’m being taken over by the Pharyngulite Zombies©

    No. It’s not them. It’s worse than that, Jim, it’s …, it’s …, it’s the other Alan.

    Will Alan B escape?
    Will Ed. come to his rescue?? [Ed. Not a chance!]
    Will “Share and Enjoy” ever be the same???

    Does anyone care?
    And the Universe said, “No!”

    See our next exciting episode of “Alan B, Special Chemist” in “The Thread That Will Not Die!”

    Or not if you can’t be bothered!

  340. #342 MetzO'Magic
    January 18, 2010

    Then I’m going to guess the film’s The Matrix; but I haven’t seen it so I have no idea which pill allegedly did what or even that there was more than one pill and that it was a choice.

    Fair enough. I don’t like to spoil plots on people, so we’ll leave it at that.

  341. #343 MetzO'Magic
    January 18, 2010

    I’ve had personal encounters, close encounters, with 13 bears. Less than half ran away.

    When you’re speed dating, you’ve got to handle the big, hairy ones with kid gloves. If half of them are running away before you even get to talk to them, yer doin’ it wrong. I reckon it could be the stare.

  342. #344 blf
    January 18, 2010

    When you’re speed dating, you’ve got to handle the big, hairy ones with kid gloves.

    What do you do if it’s small and flaccid?

  343. #345 David Marjanovi?
    January 18, 2010

    Wow. 340 comments already, and already rank 9.2 in the “Top Posts” widget.

    …So, I got an e-mail from a certain “Jadehawk ^_^” which informs me that photos from the 2009 dig in Krasiejów are online. I am indeed shown in at least two of them.

    (I check my e-mail only once per day while at work, mainly to delete the spam. Now I’m at home and not limited to webmail. GMX doesn’t delete anything that’s not on my blacklist.)

    Now, Jadehawk, is there a photo of you somewhere? Or should I not bother launching images.google.com…?

    Carlie also found me ? one of the participants in the dig was also present at the 5th Symposium on Permo-Carboniferous Faunas and took a photo of me from behind. But beware! In that photo there’s a very strange reflection on my sniny hair that looks like naked skin… like a rift between two continents… <headshake>

    Bears are not humanoid enough (can’t throw things or kidnap you)

    Sounds like a good point.

  344. #346 MetzO'Magic
    January 18, 2010

    I was not making a veiled reference to illegal narcotics, sex, or anything else that might merit the use of a euphemism.

    That sentence alone proves you desperately need to try at least one of those things, ;).

    That reminds me of one of my fav Hunter S. Thompson quotes, from Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas:

    “I tend to sweat heavily in warm climates. My clothes are soaking wet from dawn to dusk. This worried me at first, but when I went to a doctor and described my normal daily intake of booze, drugs and poison he told me to come back when the sweating stopped.”

    …while we’re waiting for some creotard or AGW-denier to stumble onto this thread. Just to pass the time, like.

  345. #347 vanitas
    January 18, 2010

    David
    Krasiejów 2009 – picture of you with Jakub and Daniel.

  346. #348 vanitas
    January 18, 2010

    Duh! by the time you get a comment on, someone has already beaten you to it…

  347. #349 Jadehawk, OM
    January 18, 2010

    So, I got an e-mail from a certain “Jadehawk ^_^” which informs me that photos from the 2009 dig in Krasiejów are online. I am indeed shown in at least two of them.

    see, this is why i didn’t want to send you the pictures. spoilsport :-p

    Now, Jadehawk, is there a photo of you somewhere? Or should I not bother launching images.google.com…?

    upon googling myself, I have discovered that most images are by me, not of me. I found two though: one from 10 years ago, and another from Halloween 2008 :-)

    also, “Silesaurus opolensis” is an awesome name. I shall have to visit that excavation site someday, since it seems only a few hours from where my dad lives

  348. #351 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 18, 2010

    what do you do if it’s small and flaccid?

    Generally, I assume it’s a priest, then point and laugh.

  349. #352 David Marjanovi?
    January 18, 2010

    Krasiejów 2009 – picture of you with Jakub and Daniel.

    Yes. Who are you? Do I know you?

    I shall have to visit that excavation site someday, since it seems only a few hours from where my dad lives

    I’ll try to participate in the dig again this summer. If they still take me (in theory it’s only for students, and by then I’ll most likely have my doctorate, though I’ve seen exceptions), I might be able to bring a friend (that seems to happen a lot)…

    see, this is why i didn’t want to send you the pictures. spoilsport :-p

    …?

    Oh. Have I made searching too easy? You see, I have a phobia of misunderstandings, so I wanted to make sure that anyone here who finds those photos knows it really is me. After all, as I have learned, there is potential for confusion.

    I found two though: one from 10 years ago, and another from Halloween 2008 :-)

    Bizarrely, I found only one.

    Your drawings remind me of my uncle’s. He makes storyboards and got involved in Star Wars. Incidentally, his name is probably nigh ungoogleable (he’s my biological aunt’s husband, so he doesn’t share my surname).

  350. #353 eddie
    January 18, 2010

    Understand I’m not an expert on breasts, pendulous or otherwise, but the idea that another great ape species would have the same kind of sexual selection as h sap sap while not having the same selection for hairlessness seems weird to me.

  351. #354 David Marjanovi?
    January 18, 2010

    Bizarrely, I found only one.

    And that one looks big, but in fact it’s so small that you could look like three or four entirely different people I know! :^)

    that anyone here who finds those photos knows it really is me

    …and, especially, that anyone who finds photos of someone else can figure out they’re not of me.

  352. #355 eddie
    January 18, 2010

    I’ve watched a bunch of the bigfoot movies on youtube and I now believe…
    …it is Patricia’s hairy-assed brother, Ed.

  353. #356 Jadehawk, OM
    January 18, 2010

    I’ll try to participate in the dig again this summer. If they still take me (in theory it’s only for students, and by then I’ll most likely have my doctorate, though I’ve seen exceptions), I might be able to bring a friend (that seems to happen a lot)…

    I suspect that trying to coordinate that with my only visit to Europe this year (i.e. during the worldcup) would be impossible, since I can’t just stay in Europe for several months. I’ll go broke if I don’t get any work done for that long, and for some reason I don’t get any work done when not at home.

    Oh. Have I made searching too easy?

    yes. where’s the fun in cyberstalking if you’re going to hand out the information just like that? :-p

    And that one looks big, but in fact it’s so small that you could look like three or four entirely different people I know! :^)

    well, they’re avatars/profile pics, so of course they’re tiny.

    come to think of it, it’s rather amusing and weird that there aren’t any more pictures of me, since I have a Webshots account.

  354. #358 SC OM
    January 18, 2010

    Yes. Who are you? Do I know you?

    If it’s the one on the site I found, the label has your names.

  355. #359 SteveV
    January 18, 2010

    #207 SEF

    Better late than never

    http://www.finecheese.co.uk/cheese-wedding-cakes.html

    Enjoy

  356. #360 mythusmage
    January 18, 2010

    I have returned, mostly refreshed with the Diabetes Type 2 and all (taking metformin for it). Since we’re just going round and round on sasquatch I’m going to lay out my thinking on the subject.

    1. I am convinced there are native North American apes (hominids maybe) roaming the countryside.

    2. I am convinced by the Patterson/Gimlin film from 1967.

    3. I am frustrated that better evidence has not been found yet.

    4. I am ticked at those assholes manufacturing fakes that poison the subject.

    5. I’m certain that science and believers alike could be handling the matter much better than they are now.

    That said, what do I think is the most likely manner in which the sasquatch will be discovered will occur like this:

    We start by considering the fact that between births and immigration the United States has a growing population over all. There are locations, entire states even, where the population is declining, but otherwise we’re adding people on a daily basis.

    More people means more development. Even in rugged terrain as is found in Maine and Alabama (and Washington State, but mentioning that would be sort of cliche in an essay like this). More development means more buildings, in more places. The extension of Man’s footprint into once wilderness areas.

    With our extended presence in the world has come a corresponding counter movement of the world into our domain. Bears and deer are now traipsing into suburbia in the Eastern US. Here in Southern California reports of cougar sightings (the cat, not the randy broads) in neighborhoods has increased. As human development continues to expand, and sasquatch habitat continues to shrink, I see a day when the animal may well decide to see what it’s like in the human world and go sightseeing.

    That is how I see the sasquatch being discovered; when a young adult male decides to scope out human territory and is observed by the neighborhood residents. He may be recorded on video or photograph. He may interact with some humans. This first “close encounter of the third kind” will no doubt be dismissed as a fraud. But should our young explorer may decide to return, and may even by emulated by other young male sasquatch, and their adventures will be recorded.

    Records of their visits, and records of their appearance. Which will include comprehensive looks at their anatomy, including their junk. Their package, their flugelhorn, their genitalia. The hoaxers tend to omit that in their costumes?

    Then comes the day when a sasquatch tourist takes a dump on camera. (Like he knows what a camera is, or has any idea what the taboo against public shitting is all about.)

    And speaking of shit, with sasquatch traipsing around suburbia there will be many opportunities to collect fecal samples. And hair samples. And samples of skin, blood, and other substances. Sasquatch start touring human lairs forensic evidence will be widely available.

    Yes, I know that this all depends on the existence of sasquatch. I’m also aware that there is little evidence of any sort pointing to that existence, and what evidence as does exist may have an alternate explanation or be faked. Still and all, what with the present situation it may be such a scenario that leads to the formal discovery and naming of the sasquatch.

    We’ll just have to wait and see if it occurs.

    BTW, I am aware that the above is an open ended prophesy. It could happen tomorrow, it could happen a century from now. It could be happening right now, we just haven’t heard about it. It may never happen at all and we’ll learn for certain and for sure that the sasquatch does not exist (evidence of absence you know). All I can ask for is patience and forbearance on your part. I hope the above helped clear things up regarding my sasquatch stance and gave you something to think about.

  357. #361 SEF
    January 18, 2010

    @ SteveV #358:

    Those aren’t so much cakes as they are mere piles of cheeses with flowers on! :-D

  358. #362 Carlie
    January 18, 2010

    muthusmage – Why do you dismiss all of the evidence presented that the Patterson film is a hoax?

  359. #363 A. Noyd
    January 18, 2010

    mythusmage (#359)

    [blah blah blah blah]

    Enough with the mental diarrhea. Fulfill my simple request from #135. Give evidence that anyone is actually saying* that “the lack of evidence means we can’t go looking.”

    ……………………
    *If you’re not sure what I mean, refer to #150.

  360. #364 MetzO'Magic
    January 18, 2010

    mythusmage,

    The metaphorical sasquatch has been well and truly beaten to death at this stage in the proceedings. You may feel re-invigorated, but we don’t.

  361. #365 mythusmage
    January 18, 2010

    Now for some observations regarding Jesus of Nazareth.

    1. Jesus existed.

    2. He was born in the village of Nazareth in Galilee, birth date unknown.

    3. His parents were Joseph and Mary (Yosif and Miriam if you must).

    4. Joseph and Mary had premarital sex, the result of which was Jesus. (Yes, I am aware that the Jewish community of the time had rules against premarital sex, but people don’t always follow the rules.)

    5. It was a shotgun wedding. Mary’s family confronted Joseph’s family and they came to an agreement whereby Joseph agreed to wed the despoiled Mary.

    6. After some years of unhappy marriage — and a few more kids after Jesus — the two divorced and Mary returned to her family for support. (This would go a long way towards explaining Jesus’ antipathy to the institution of divorce.)

    7. Jesus did think he was the Messiah. (He knew nothing of this Christ critter, which is a different thing than a Messiah.) Jesus was wrong.

    8. During his vigil at Gethsemane he realized just how wrong he was, but decided to stay and face the music because he thought God demanded it of him.

    9. He was crucified, but he did not die. There were people who actually survived crucifixion and went on to live for years. Crucifixion did not kill you quickly, it killed you slowly with the end coming by strangulation.

    10. He awoke in his tomb, thinking he had been raised from the dead by God. Not knowing the true extent of his injuries he went gallivanting around talking to people and bleeding. Naturally he collapsed and died for real as he was walking with his followers discussing what they were to do next.

    Note that there was no competent physician present at his crucifixion. Luke the Physician was hiding with the rest of Jesus’ followers, it was his family and personal friends who attended. Besides, I’d hardly call a lying bastard like Luke a competent physician. (Compare Matthew’s account of the Passion with Luke’s sometime. Luke fibbed is the nicest thing I can say about what he did.)

    11. Jesus did say he was going to return someday. Jesus really believed that. Jesus was wrong. Not lying, wrong. He assumed things that were not so, and was shown to be in error.

    12. Finally, Jesus could be a jerk. To his friends and admirers he could be gracious and charming, but to his enemies he could be a royal asshole. So remember the next time you hear the phrase “Prince of Peace”, remember that to people he didn’t like Jesus of Nazareth could be a sarcastic bastard.

    You know, if you think about it, with Jesus’ visits to publicans and sinners and the spots they frequent, what was stopping him from schtupping a hooker or whore? Not being real people, sex with them wouldn’t count.

    And there you have my observations on Jesus of Nazareth.

  362. #366 Blind Squirrel FCD
    January 18, 2010

    I hope the above helped clear things up regarding my sasquatch stance

    Yes.

    and gave you something to think about.

    No.

    BS

  363. #367 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 18, 2010

    MM, we don’t give a shit what you think or believe. Right now you are showing yourself in a very, very bad light for any future discussions here. Your credibility is heading into negative numbers, like godbots and creobots. So, either cite the peer reviewed scientific literature, or shut the fuck up. Welcome to science.

  364. #368 mythusmage
    January 18, 2010

    #361

    Carlie,

    Has that evidence been verified, or only attested to?

  365. #369 Jadehawk, OM
    January 18, 2010

    And there you have my observations on Jesus of Nazareth.

    observation doesn’t work like that. those aren’t observations, those are speculations.

  366. #370 speedweasel
    January 18, 2010

    Walton is back in full swing with his remorse trolling I see.

    allintext: walton – sorry | apologize site:scienceblogs.com/pharyngula

    Hi Walton, we’ve never spoken but I’m speedweasel and I’m sick of reading your numerous apologies.

    Could you knock it off please? Thanks.

  367. #371 mythusmage
    January 18, 2010

    When did ire and outrage become legitimate reasons to reject a proposition?

  368. #372 Jadehawk, OM
    January 18, 2010

    When did ire and outrage become legitimate reasons to reject a proposition?

    you confuse our feelings about you and your trolling with our feelings about the stuff you present here.

  369. #373 mythusmage
    January 18, 2010

    #366

    Nerd,

    In time the kidney stone will pass.

  370. #374 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 18, 2010

    MM, let sasquatch, who never lived, die in piece (STFU about him). Quit trying to upset the applecart with inane speculation. We really don’t give a shit what you think with those airy (non-evidenced) speculations. Rehabilitate yourself. Start by taking your speculations elsewhere

  371. #375 Blind Squirrel FCD
    January 18, 2010

    There were people who actually survived crucifixion and went on to live for years.

    Citation, please.

    A much more parsimonious explanation, if we accept that a historical Jesus existed is that Jesus had a twin brother that the disciples dug out of some 0 century ale house, dried out and paraded around for a few days.

    BS

  372. #376 mythusmage
    January 18, 2010

    #371

    Sorry Jadehawk, but what I see is you confusing your feelings about me with your feelings about what I present. What I see is people saying, “This is wrong, the man is a jerk.” Equating the messenger with his message, and damning both because you don’t like what the message says. The existence of sasquatch will be proved or disproved on its own merits, on the evidence gathered whichever way it points.

    You shant persuade me with invective and bile, but with facts and evidence. But first be sure your evidence says what you think it says, and has been proved itself.

  373. #377 lose_the_woo
    January 18, 2010

    Now for some observations regarding Jesus of Nazareth.

    You think that those are observations? I don’t think that word means what you think it means.

  374. #378 SteveV
    January 18, 2010

    #360 SEF

    Whadda yu mean ‘mere’

    You some kind of cheese hater?

    FYI they also sell bacon – really good bacon.
    Sadly no nipples.

  375. #379 RickR
    January 18, 2010

    “This is wrong, and the man is a jerk.”

    Fixed for accuracy.

  376. #380 mythusmage
    January 18, 2010

    On other subjects, just recently I saw something about a coming bout of rampant inflation. May happen, may not, but I have seen one sign of how this round may play out.

    While shopping for comestibles at the neighborhood Ralphs (Southern California chain owned by Krogers) I spotted a price change on two liter sodas. The recommended retail stayed at $1.99, but the discounted price had risen from $1.25 to $1.79.

    That got me to thinking, and my thinking is that this round of inflation will be marked by retailers and discounters raising prices, while the manufacturers will stay the course, and may even lower prices. Discounters, such as groceries, will reduce their discounting and prices at the store will come more in line with retail pricing.

    There is also the possibility I’m wrong and the manufacturers will start raising prices themselves. Time will tell.

  377. #381 SteveV
    January 18, 2010

    Any chance of a link to the Cheese Shop Sketch?

  378. #382 Walton
    January 18, 2010

    speedweasel, believe it or not, calling me a “remorse troll”, after all the years I’ve been here, actually hurts. If you don’t like my posts, don’t read them.

    Yes, I apologise a lot. I will admit to this failing; it follows from the fact that I get things wrong on a regular basis, and that I am aware of my own mistakes. Apparently this particular character flaw makes me a “remorse troll” and means that nothing I say is worth taking seriously. This is something I never realised.

  379. #383 mythusmage
    January 18, 2010

    #377

    SteveV,

    SEF impugned cheese? :rage: Why that cad, that bounder, that hamster! Impugn cheese? He may as well as declare the pizza unfit for human consumption!

    Mere cheese indeed.

  380. #384 mythusmage
    January 18, 2010

    #381

    Walton,

    After all the creationists and God annoyers that have visited here it becomes easy for some to yell “troll”. Outrage and frustration ends up hurting those outraged.

  381. #385 Menyambal
    January 18, 2010

    mythusmage, your perceived persecution doesn’t make you into a Jesus.

    People don’t like you and your postings for very simple reasons.

    You are not offering anything new and useful about Sasquatch. You are just rambling on about what you think, and you don’t seem to think very well.

    You are talking down to folks–don’t do that–by telling them what and how to think–don’t think that helps your case–like some sort of superior jerk. I am just trying to help you out, here, because you make me feel all maternal, you little fuzzy lumpkin, you, sweetikins.

    You won’t listen, read or shut the hell up.

    You believe in Sasquatch, which pretty much makes you a crazy person. This is not a crazy person site, nor a believer site.

    Most folks here see little probablity that Saquatch exists, and great probablity that everybody who has “evidence” is a hoaxer and that everyone who believes that evidence is making a mistake, and is probably not qualified to participate in an intellectual discussion.

    Trolls, on the other hand, exist. At least the internet variety. You, mythusmage, are very probably a troll. You are certainly in the wrong place.

  382. #386 Ichthyic
    January 18, 2010

    all the years I’ve been here

    has it been that long?

    OTOH, sure seems that way whenever i see you post your endless ignorant drivel.

    I get things wrong on a regular basis, and that I am UNaware of my own mistakes.

    fixed that for you.

  383. #387 David Marjanovi?
    January 18, 2010

    I suspect that trying to coordinate that with my only visit to Europe this year (i.e. during the worldcup) would be impossible, since I can’t just stay in Europe for several months.

    It would just be two weeks. The FIFA World Cup® ends on… <wikipedia> July 11th; one such time slot should start around July 15th.

    the label has your names.

    “vanitas” isn’t a name.

    <think, think>

    Dawid Mazurek? That kind of throwing Latin words around looks a bit like him. Sort of. And the two one-liners don’t contradict that. Cze??, Bosmanie! <wave> :-)

    Now for some observations regarding Jesus of Nazareth.

    “Observations”, or “Jesus of Nazareth”? :-)

    The speculative scenario you unfold is entirely possible*, but there’s no evidence for it whatsoever, and it’s not even terribly parsimonious. I will therefore blithely ignore it.

    * Except for one problem: how does one get out of that kind of tomb without several people rolling the stone away?

  384. #388 SEF
    January 18, 2010

    @ SteveV #377:

    Whadda yu mean ‘mere’

    I mean not made into cakes (those spongy and generally sweet flavoured things) as one of several ingredients. Those cakes of cheese you found are more along the lines of cakes of soap (which are just moulded soap).

  385. #389 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 18, 2010

    Even his Jebus plot is a repeat. Research. Keeps one from reinventing the wheel…

  386. #390 Sven DiMilo
    January 18, 2010

    OK, well, the angels rolling away the stone really happened, but the rest was a Big Hoxe!

  387. #391 David Marjanovi?
    January 18, 2010

    What I see is people saying, “This is wrong, the man is a jerk.”

    <sigh>

    Then look again.

    Off-topic:

    “I have noticed even people who claim everything is predestined, and that we can do nothing to change it, look before they cross the road.”
    ? Stephen Hawking

  388. #392 A. Noyd
    January 18, 2010

    mythusmage (#375)

    but what I see is you confusing your feelings about me with your feelings about what I present

    These “conclusions” and “feelings” you refer to are the product of your imagination. You’re trying to make us doubt something you invented. If you weren’t a coward, you could quote someone saying something like “the lack of evidence means we can’t go looking.” (Doesn’t have to be those exact words.) I should think, given how many words you’ve already wasted on this, that you would want to make sure you understand how we feel.

  389. #393 SC OM
    January 18, 2010

    “vanitas” isn’t a name.

    Huh? No, I meant that vanitas could have just read the names listed below the pic, like I did. (I have no idea – vanitas could know you, but one wouldn’t have to to describe the picture that way. Were you going by the fact that vanitas referred to you by your first names? I’m confused.)

  390. #394 eddie
    January 18, 2010

    Deep cover concern troll gotcha @216!

    OTOH, pharynguloids all have their own personalities and act and react as the current situation arises. C’est la vie.

  391. #395 mythusmage
    January 18, 2010

    Here’s something to be outraged by…

    Pumping Autistic Children Full of an Industrial Chelator

    Read the whole thing, and write to the FDA or your country’s equivalent about this crime.

  392. #396 Sven DiMilo
    January 18, 2010

    dude, vanitas could be anybody; the picture is labeled with your names (and you look nerdy as all get-out!)(tee-hee!)

  393. #397 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 18, 2010

    Walton have you been tested for PMS?

  394. #398 Rutee, Shrieking Harpy of Dooooom
    January 18, 2010

    PZ will be :< about having to put up another endless thread in a couple days.

  395. #399 Rutee, Shrieking Harpy of Dooooom
    January 18, 2010

    ….Oh, I get it.
    :| about making a new Endless thread so soon, then. Apparently you can’t use open Lesser Signs in emoticons here?

  396. #400 SEF
    January 18, 2010

    @ Rutee #398:

    You can but you have to know what you’re doing.

    <?##

    <><

  397. #401 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 18, 2010

    Apparently you can’t use open Lesser Signs in emoticons here?

    Since they are used for the HTML tags, no. &LT Done using ampersandLT.

  398. #402 llewelly
    January 18, 2010

    The lone sasquatch doesn’t just need family, it needs ancestry. How is it supposed to have traversed to the US from Africa/Asia (where the great apes evolved) without apparently even being tool-using (not just on film footage but also because that would mean another strand of physical evidence found wanting)?

    The answer is, or should be, common knowledge:
    Sasquatch migrated to North America riding on invisible flying pink unicorns.

  399. #403 a_ray_in_dilbert_space
    January 18, 2010

    Don’t forget: Blessed are the cheesemakers
    Cheese shop sketch
    Pick your favorite version:
    http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=cheese+shop+sketch&search_type=&aq=f

  400. #404 'Tis Himself, OM
    January 18, 2010

    Damn, I wish Walton had come back to discuss tone rather than mythusmage coming back to discuss Big Feet.

  401. #405 aratina cage of the OM
    January 18, 2010

    Sasquatch migrated to North America riding on invisible flying pink unicorns.

    Hmmm…

    Santa’s reindeer :: invisible flying pink unicorns

    Santa’s helpers :: Sasquatch

    Santa :: Wild Uncle Bill with a .30-06

  402. #406 eddie
    January 18, 2010

    I think I’ve finally caught up, but missed a few comments due to hiding from the tone police. David Marjanovi?, OM, are you the one kneeling down on the right hand side of a group photo linked to above?

    My mam makes good scones with grated cheese through them. You gotta use a hard cheese that won’t be too badly cooked and roll the grated cheese in. Never had both cheese and fruit in a scone, tho.

  403. #407 llewelly
    January 18, 2010

    Pharyngula has a serious cultural problem, due to this ingrained idea that tone and politeness do not matter.

    There are some contests which one has no choice but to engage in, but cannot be won solely by playing nice. A vital part of winning any PR battle is convincing those who had not previously taken a side, that if they take the side of your enemies, their reputation will be damaged. It is very important to convince all onlookers that if they agree with the creationists, the anti-vaxers, the AGW-denialists, or the anti-science groups, they will be seen as either deluded, dishonest, or stupid – and rightly so.

  404. #408 A. Noyd
    January 18, 2010

    Want greater and less than signs? Use:
    &lt; instead of <
    &gt; instead of >

    And because I’m an idiot, it took ages to figure out how to get &lt; to show up instead of <. I only stared at the ampersand entity for ampersand itself for forever before* realizing I use it to replace the ampersand in &lt;. Now it’s so obvious I want to cry.

    …………………
    *Hmm, the for’s is strong with this sentence.

  405. #409 'Tis Himself, OM
    January 18, 2010

    In meatspace I’m generally a polite, soft-spoken, mannerly man even when I’m disagreeing with someone. On the intertubes I’m somewhat cruder, although I try to be polite when the person I’m addressing is making an honest effort to discuss rather than rant or proselytize.

    In discussions on Pharyngula there are generally two things that set me off:

    (1) The creotard who says “evilution is on its last legs and is only sustained by dogmatic fervor from atheists” probably believes it. The creotard rarely if ever will look at evidence to show this belief is wrong. Willful ignorance makes me rude, crude and socially unacceptable.

    (b) I get quite annoyed by people who tell me what I think and why I think it. “Yer a atheist ’cause you hate gawd” will get scorn as a response.

  406. #410 SEF
    January 18, 2010

    Now it’s so obvious I want to cry.

    That seems to be a common problem. Quite recently someone else (I think!) was annoyed with themselves for having to have the ampersand for ampersand thing pointed out to them.

    Meanwhile, other people get annoyed if you do pre-emptively point out the obvious.

  407. #411 SC OM
    January 18, 2010

    In meatspace I’m generally a polite, soft-spoken, mannerly man even when I’m disagreeing with someone. On the intertubes I’m somewhat cruder,

    You don’t say.
    :)

  408. #412 llewelly
    January 18, 2010

    * Except for one problem: how does one get out of that kind of tomb without several people rolling the stone away?

    If you had seen any good movies, the answer would be obvious to you: zombies are really fucking strong.

  409. #413 PZ Myers
    January 18, 2010

    Over 400 comments in a thread I just opened yesterday? Yikes.

  410. #414 Owlmirror
    January 18, 2010

    People, please!

    There is a simple, obvious compromise solution to this Deep Rift ™ that is plaguing us:

    The video is indeed a hoax; the Patterson-Gimlin video is indeed also a hoax. But Bigfoot hoaxes have a purpose. They are part of a disinformation campaign waged by and for Bigfeet (or Sasquatch-Americans).

    The point is not to convince humans (Homo [so-called] sapiens) that Sasquatch-Americans (Homo maxipodus) are real, but rather that Sasquatch-Americans are no different from humans in furry suits.

    Yes, this is somewhat demeaning to them, for now. But they want to be able to stand up for their rights in court and be considered as human as Diné, Cymry, or Suomalaiset.

    They have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal.”

    But first they have to be considered to be exactly equivalent to men.

  411. #415 Sven DiMilo
    January 18, 2010

    Over 18,435 comments in a thread Teh CO just opened last February? Yikes.

  412. #416 Sven DiMilo
    January 18, 2010

    as human as Diné, Cymry, or Suomalaiset.

    I R laffin.

  413. #417 Owlmirror
    January 18, 2010

    PS: “I believe the truth always lies halfway between the most extreme claims.”

  414. #418 Mr T
    January 18, 2010

    Owlmirror, #416:

    If it’s true that “the truth lies halfway between the most extreme claims”, then I am awfully confused.

    Let’s say we start with an extreme claim. To get to the opposite extreme, we first have to get halfway there. One would think this is enough to get us to the TruthTM, but I’m afraid nothing is ever so simple. In order to get halfway there, we first must get to half of that distance (a quarter of the total distance from one extreme to the other), and so on ad infinitum. Clearly then it’s not important what the actual distance away from the TruthTM is or in what units it is measured. Therefore, unless we start exactly at the TruthTM, we can never arrive at the TruthTM.

    Q.E.D., and stuff, etc.

  415. #419 Owlmirror
    January 18, 2010

    I cannot possibly be the only one here who regularly reads xkcd.

  416. #420 cicely
    January 18, 2010

    Hi, Walton.

    To a certain, limited, extent, I feel that you have a point. I, myself, have always felt that once you call someone an asshat, they stop listening to your logical, well-reasoned arguments; but I think that there’s an element of projection involved on my part, because I know that I tend to stop listening to yadda yadda, after they call me an asshat. But the thing is….your mileage may vary. And Lynna’s mileage may vary. And Sven’s, and Owlmirror’s….you get the picture. For dishing it out, as for taking it.

    Not everyone is receptive to the same style, and I say, a good thing, too! Monocultures aren’t necessarily the healthiest cultures.

  417. #421 mythusmage
    January 18, 2010

    #408

    Tis Himself,

    What annoys me is being told how I must think. Outrage and ire are no way to get me to change my mind either.

    BTW, I support your right to be a God denying, baby eating, Darwin adoring atheist.The lemur porn goes to far however.

  418. #422 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 18, 2010

    Over 400 comments in a thread I just opened yesterday? Yikes.

    You’re getting paid for our posts, right? Ka-ching!

  419. #423 Lynna, OM
    January 18, 2010

    cicely, JNOV came on here the other day and called himself/herself an asshat. That’s one way to get over it. I’m aiming for Petite Poopyhead.

    In other news: Haitians everywhere are united by faith according to CNN. This coverage bugs me. It’s like seizing the opportunity to proselytize.

    “People continue to be God’s instruments,” the pastor said, with the help of a Creole translator. “God will work through all of us to bring new life to Haiti.”

  420. #424 Jadehawk, OM
    January 18, 2010

    I cannot possibly be the only one here who regularly reads xkcd.

    you’re not, but I do sometimes forget that there’s extra commentary when you hover the mouse over it :-)

  421. #425 mythusmage
    January 18, 2010

    Speaking of the Beast That Shall not be Named, here’s a Beast That Shall not be Named video from NatGeoTV. The episode itself is supposed to air on the 24th.

    (Haven’t seen it myself, Safari keeps reloading the page, and I’m now waiting for Disk Utility to finished doing the checksum on my new harddrive, so Firefox is not available to me.)

  422. #426 'Tis Himself, OM
    January 18, 2010

    BTW, I support your right to be a God denying, baby eating, Darwin adoring atheist.The lemur porn goes to far however.

    You’ll pry my lemur porn from my cold, stiff hands.

  423. #427 mythusmage
    January 18, 2010

    News flash! Chupacabra discovered. Identified as Eddie’s cousin, Milton. Milton now undergoing treatment for his advanced exzema.

    Update: Milton’s vampirism is proving resistant to treatment.

  424. #428 mythusmage
    January 18, 2010

    #425

    Tis Himself

    You ever wonder why your hands are cold and stiff?

  425. #429 Mr T
    January 18, 2010

    Owlmirror:

    I cannot possibly be the only one here who regularly reads xkcd.

    You’re definitely not. I had thought it was a funny quote wherever you had come across it, but hadn’t gotten my dose of xkcd in at least 24 hours. My deepest apologies.

    I don’t think that’s the most parsimonious compromise, though. Obviously, the government only used half the amount of explosives necessary to take down both towers, and it was an unfortunate coincidence that at exactly the same time the terrorists crashed the planes into them.

    Mythus magoo: your first “observation” that Jesus existed is not substantiated by anything. A character named “Jesus” was mentioned in the Bible, and that’s all there is. You may as well be talking about Zeus or Poseidon. From there, it goes downhill.

  426. #430 aratina cage of the OM
    January 18, 2010

    What annoys me is being told how I must think.

    Sorry, but Sasquatch/Bigfoot are “big” no-nos. Lemur porn is acceptable, however.

  427. #431 joshua.dittrich
    January 18, 2010

    The BBC recently did an excellent program about chaos (in the mathematical meaning, not the colloquial). As stated at the beginning, the show is about the question “how did we get here?”, and it nicely concludes that chaos theory and evolution quite cleanly explain how systems with simple rules will manifest incredible complexity in entirely unpredictable ways. It’s something I expect many readers will enjoy, so I wanted to share it with you all.

    I’m sorry if this isn’t the most appropriate place for this, but there hasn’t been a creationist thread in a while. Although, PZ could make a thread about this program…

  428. #432 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 18, 2010

    MM, a word of advice. You are trying too hard to get a number of discussions going. Back off for at least one full day. Then, only try one topic, or join in what we start.

  429. #433 Jadehawk, OM
    January 18, 2010

    It would just be two weeks. The FIFA World Cup® ends on… July 11th; one such time slot should start around July 15th.

    hmmm…. that might actually be doable. I shall have to think about it :-)

  430. #434 joshua.dittrich
    January 18, 2010

    Sorry, that link failed. I’m new at this, so I’d appreciate suggestions. Until then…

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YEpZFEIDHdc

  431. #435 Blind Squirrel FCD
    January 19, 2010

    joshua.dittrich:

    I’m sorry if this isn’t the most appropriate place for this,

    No, this is an open thread. Pretty much anything goes, but your link is borked.

    BS

  432. #436 Miki Z
    January 19, 2010

    Thanks for your posting, joshua.dittrich. I studied this stuff in grad school and one of the things I do for money is build models (of the mathematical variety). It’s of great interest to me, and I didn’t realize a televison program had been made about it.

  433. #437 Rorschach
    January 19, 2010

    If I had to venture a guess, I would say that MM has entered into a manic phase of his bipolar disorder.

    And to jadehawk and David M, I have cut my Europe visit short and instead added a week of lavish decadence in Thailand to start the holiday off with, so I won’t be around until June 27, and then the schedule will be pretty tight until July 11.

    For you vomit fetishists :

    Palin on Beck

  434. #438 Rorschach
    January 19, 2010

    and then the schedule will be pretty tight until July 11.

    Having said that, the train from Cologne to Paris takes, what, 2 hours ? So not an issue really…:-)

  435. #439 Jadehawk, OM
    January 19, 2010

    Having said that, the train from Cologne to Paris takes, what, 2 hours ? So not an issue really…:-)

    you two are going to make me travel across half of Europe this summer, aren’t you? :-p

    Anyway, let me know if you can make enough free time to watch one of the games and have some beers with me. Hannover to Cologne isn’t that horribly far, either :-)

  436. #440 Rorschach
    January 19, 2010

    Anyway, let me know if you can make enough free time to watch one of the games and have some beers with me

    Oh !!! Now that would be awesome…:-) My brother lives near Hannover, that’s really just a Katzensprung !

  437. #441 bastion of sass
    January 19, 2010

    Haven’t had time to read all the comments in this thread. Hope this hasn’t already been posted repeatedly.

    Satan’s reply to Pat Robertson.

  438. #442 Stephen Wells
    January 19, 2010

    Why does mm think anyone is interested in the random fanfiction he writes about leprechauns and Mithras? Sorry, bigfoot and Jesus.

  439. #444 SEF
    January 19, 2010

    Another example of where the UK bottlenecks are for medicine – over whether or not to make expensive treatments available at all (rather than rationing initial access to services based on wealth or possession of reluctant insurance!).

  440. #445 'Tis Himself, OM
    January 19, 2010

    Yesterday I was helping a friend with his model railroad. He and I were detailing one section and he had a model of a man who was just perfect for the scene except it was looking in the wrong direction. So I put the model in a vise and was hacking off the head with a razor saw when our wives came in. The look on my wife’s face when she saw what I was doing was, um, interesting.

  441. #446 Sven DiMilo
    January 19, 2010

    Here you go, Alan: Bigfoot in Oz?

  442. #447 Focus
    January 19, 2010

    #444

    Wouldn’t it have been easier to just turn the model around, so the man looks in the right direction?

  443. #448 Sven DiMilo
    January 19, 2010

    Here’s the (eminently sensible) Executive Summary:

    The most sensible conclusion is that the Yowie represents a combination of hoaxing, hallucination and witness misinterpretation, combined with the global folklore motif of the wild hairy-man. ‘Wild man’/mystery hominid sightings and legends don’t just come from Asia and North America; believe it or don’t, there are also accounts, legends and even recent sightings of such creatures from Hawaii, New Zealand, the UK and Spain. While there’s nowhere near enough Yowie evidence to make any hard-nosed sceptic properly pause for thought, some of the eyewitness accounts do, I feel, suggest that people have had encounters with peculiar creatures of some kind. Even if this is a naďve conclusion, we still have a fascinating cultural phenomenon here, and a larger question emerges: why do people claim to see wild, hairy, man-like creatures in the Australian bush?

  444. #449 SEF
    January 19, 2010

    Another link (with more numbers but also bonus spelling error).

    Consider the case of a hypothetical person with rheumatoid arthritis who is one of those for whom other treatments won’t work but this one will. They are soon going to be so badly disabled without it that they will no longer be able to support themselves (or any family) – quite apart from all the pain they’ll be in. So it’s going to be on their personal must-have list.

    The Ł9K cost per year is about a third of the average gross income here (with a third already going on various taxes) – the sort of income a well educated but undervalued person might get. It’s well over the minimum wage. So that cost would finish off most people’s budgets. The stinking rich proportion of the populace wouldn’t notice a problem of course. But I’m not sure whether anyone’s private health care insurance here would cover it.

    So how would that example compare with the US? Would US health insurance cover that sort of drug at all – or have a convenient loop-hole for never actually paying out for it? Would it be too much for most of the population to afford in their own right (assuming they can gain access to it privately somehow). NB this is leaving aside the issue that many people in the US wouldn’t even be able to get as far as having the problem diagnosed in the first place because of the cost of that process being levied on the individual.

  445. #450 Lynna, OM
    January 19, 2010

    Re Rorschach’s link to Palin on Beck, Palin noted that it’s awful when we can’t trust what’s going on in the Whitehouse. She expressed fear (alarming eye-widening), outrage, and her usual bilious nature, … but no irony.

  446. #451 'Tis Himself, OM
    January 19, 2010

    Wouldn’t it have been easier to just turn the model around, so the man looks in the right direction?

    No, because then the body would have been facing the wrong direction. I cut the head off, rotated it 90°, and glued it back on.

  447. #452 Miki Z
    January 19, 2010

    Re SEF@448:

    It depends entirely on the insurance company. Even the best plans typically have some limit on prescription drug coverage, usually amounting to a hard limit on the number of pills of any one drug that can be obtained monthly.

    Some insurance plans offer no drug coverage at all or reserve the right to “substitute” generics for you. Your physician might prescribe drug X and the insurance company will tell the pharmacist to give you drug Y. This is almost universally the case with brand-name vs. generic drugs, despite some (so far not conclusive, afaik) evidence that some generic drugs differ in efficacy from their brand-name counterparts — anti-convulsants in particular.

    The companies can also be stupidly retarded in their application of policies. My wife’s insurance policy paid nearly $8,000/month for her to receive treatment several times per week at her physician’s office rather than pay the $900/month that the medication recommended by the physician cost. They would pay for the medication and appointment if my wife received it at the physician’s office, but not if she picked it up at the pharmacy.

    If an insurance company will pay for a drug, though, getting that payment is usually not a problem. Most pharmacies receive electronic approval for the prescription while they are filling it, so that you only pay whatever agreed portion (usually a flat rate, differing only between generic and name-brand drugs) at the cashier.

  448. #453 Lynna, OM
    January 19, 2010

    It seems like the analogy is stretched a bit too far to me, but it’s an interesting article nonetheless: Bacteria Provide New Insights into Human Decision Making

    Scientists studying how bacteria under stress collectively weigh and initiate different survival strategies say they have gained new insights into how humans make strategic decisions that affect their health, wealth and the fate of others in society.

  449. #454 Lynna, OM
    January 19, 2010

    Gators breathe like birds:

    Scientists have discovered that air flows in one direction as it loops through the lungs of alligators, just as it does in birds. The results, published in the journal Science, suggest that this breathing method may have helped dinosaurs’ ancestors dominate Earth after the planet’s worst mass extinction 251 million years ago.

  450. #455 Miki Z
    January 19, 2010

    Lynna,

    Palin doesn’t do irony, as that would be bowing to the patriarchal regime. No irony for her.

    Also, no cookie, no cleany, and no foldy.

  451. #456 Sven DiMilo
    January 19, 2010

    I’ve loved this line for years (WARNING: Janine! Do Not Click!)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0l3Ghakv8-Y

  452. #457 AJ Milne
    January 19, 2010

    Palin on Beck…

    … Oh! Oh! I know this one! Pick me! Pick me!

    (Ahem…)

    What is ‘slash most likely to be classified as a hazardous, export-controlled substance’, Alex?

    (/As to her concerns, I’m oh so terribly sympathetic, honest. It must be dreadfully disorienting, after eight years of having a dangerous, sociopathic, brain-damaged far right, manipulative, systematically deceptive, fear-mongering loon in the oval office, to be now stuck with this merely sporadically craven, middle right populist/opportunist.)

  453. #458 Miki Z
    January 19, 2010

    Interesting about the breathing of alligators. I sometimes suppose that basic information like this is all studied-out.

    It made me curious about the breathing of bats — if parts of birds’ ability to fly (and remain conscious will doing so) is based on their breathing, might bats have some differences from people in how they breathe?

    It seems that they may. Here’s an abstract of a study which suggests that bats can passively absorb oxygen into their lungs. They do breathe, but this appears to supplement their oxygen intake.

  454. #459 David Marjanovi?
    January 19, 2010

    Were you going by the fact that vanitas referred to you by your first names? I’m confused.

    I haven’t seen the photo in context, so I thought vanitas knows the people on the photo, and I was trying to ask vanitas who he/she/it/squid is.

    David Marjanovi?, OM, are you the one kneeling down on the right hand side of a group photo linked to above?

    Probably, if you call that kneeling, but? where’s the link? I seem to have overlooked it in this fast-growing thread.

    Anyway, remember I provided a fur sample.

    Hmm, the for’s is strong with this sentence.

    :-)

    Over 400 comments in a thread I just opened yesterday? Yikes.

    Looks like Bigfoot and me are good conversation starters <trying to put arm around Chewbacca’s shoulders, but failing to reach them>, even though documentation of me is slightly easier to procure.

    (?And? so is lemur porn, apparently. Uh? not easier to procure! ARGH! It’s apparently a good conversation starter!!! :-D )

    hmmm…. that might actually be doable. I shall have to think about it :-)

    You’ll like it. Even if it rains the entire two weeks through (hah!) and turns to the site into a mud pit comparable to the one I cited near the end of the previous subthread, so we can’t dig at all, you’ll like it. I promise. I’ve been there 3 times already, I know what I’m talking about. :-)

    Having said that, the train from Cologne to Paris takes, what, 2 hours ?

    Probably a bit over three, but certainly not much more ? it’s all TGV now, and almost nonstop.

    I should start asking today evening whether I should hold the thesis defense in Paris or in Vienna. It’s currently scheduled for Vienna, but there they might not have any money to invite jury members from abroad. But then, I don’t even have a jury yet.

    you two are going to make me travel across half of Europe this summer, aren’t you? :-p

    Bug or feature? To discuss this eternal question, we have invited blah blah?

    The Astronomy Picture of the Day is interesting. It’s a Martian landscape that looks surrealistic.

    Too cool.

    Here’s an abstract of a study which suggests that bats can passively absorb oxygen into their lungs.

    Erm? that abstract says that during their torpor they don’t ventilate their lungs much, but when they don’t, they don’t hold their breath (close the glottis) either, so fresh air diffuses in and stale out (even though it’s not being moved). That has nothing to do with flying.

    AFAIK, bat lungs are simply the extreme of the mammalian lung type, plus larger-than-usual amounts of hemoglobin, plus heat being dumped through the wings (birds do it through their respiratory system). In principle, a small amount of gas exchange must occur in the wings, but it probably doesn’t make any difference in such a strenuous activity as flight.

  455. #460 David Marjanovi?
    January 19, 2010

    It’s currently scheduled for Vienna

    Nothing is scheduled in the sense of “timetable”; there’s no date yet. It’s just that the cosupervision treaty currently says Vienna, but that can be changed.

  456. #461 David Marjanovi?
    January 19, 2010

    Probably a bit over three, but certainly not much more

    Would you believe it. I tried to check, but http://www.voyages-sncf.com now crashes both Safari 1.3.2 (“quits unexpectedly”) and Netscape 7.2 (page is loaded, then turns to white, and goes on loading forever). Stupid Apple, where you have to pay for the equivalent of Service Packs®.

  457. #462 Jadehawk, OM
    January 19, 2010

    You’ll like it. Even if it rains the entire two weeks through (hah!) and turns to the site into a mud pit comparable to the one I cited near the end of the previous subthread, so we can’t dig at all, you’ll like it. I promise. I’ve been there 3 times already, I know what I’m talking about. :-)

    oh, I don’t doubt that. I’m merely worrying about travel logistics. Especially flight dates, since flights in summer are getting more expensive very quickly, which might mean I’ll have to schedule them blindly; which I hate doing.

    Do you have any idea when you’d be able to find out
    1)when precisely this thing is
    2)If they let you in
    3)If they let you smuggle me in

  458. #463 Jadehawk, OM
    January 19, 2010

    Stupid Apple, where you have to pay for the equivalent of Service Packs®.

    dunno what you’re whining about: Firefox, Opera, and Safari opened the page just fine. It’s 3 1/2 hours apparently.

  459. #464 SEF
    January 19, 2010

    I provided a fur sample.

    Probably a good thing it wasn’t a scat sample.

    Looks like Bigfoot and me are good conversation starters

    But if there be giants of the hairy variety (if only in people’s subconscious projections!) then what about the pygmies and dwarfs? Where there’s a wookie there’s an ewok. Yet the small hairy primates which scare people are sometimes real – albeit without the supernatural powers attributed to them!

  460. #465 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    January 19, 2010

    So I put the model in a vise and was hacking off the head with a razor saw when our wives came in.

    That poor helpless model! You ghoul! lol

    More current affairs:

    Cambodia (The Phnom Penh Post)- Christians claims that only they give charity. Buddhist are insulted by remarks.
    Nepal (Towleroad)- LGBT persons are now protected by the constitution.
    Portugal (Fridae)- gives LGBT the right to merry. I guess God should be sending his wrath to the Himalayas and the Iberian Peninsula now.
    Russia (NHK)- People dips in ice cold water to celebrate Epiphany.
    Germany (Tagesschau)- “Betriebsratsverseucht” ist das Unwort des Jahres 2009. Was ist “Betriebsratsverseucht”?
    Es ist in kein Wörterbuch, das ich habe.

  461. #466 David Marjanovi?
    January 19, 2010

    Do you have any idea when you’d be able to find out
    1)when precisely this thing is

    I’ll check the Czech* paleontology bulletin board later today. Usually the overlords** inform people in April or May, and the excavation lasts throughout the summer. Arriving on a Sunday and leaving on the Saturday after the next one seems to be considered the normal state of affairs, but as long as there’s space, anything goes.

    * Pun impossible to avoid, so whether it was intentional makes no difference! :-)
    ** University of Opole, Institute of Paleobiology at the Polish Academy of Sciences (Warsaw).

    2)If they let you in
    3)If they let you smuggle me in

    Depends only on whether there’s still space, and that only depends on how soon they open subscriptions, I think.

    Also, I haven’t told you there’s not just Krasiejów anymore! There’s also Lisowice, where they find arguably more awesome animals, Wo?niki, which is apparently the same age as Krasiejów but was a different environment, and maybe one or two more. I’ll try Krasiejów first. Maybe it’ll even amount to one week of one and one of another.

  462. #467 Sven DiMilo
    January 19, 2010

    Well that gator story now means that I have been WOTI for years, arguing here and elsewhere that there must have been archosaurs with tidal lungs and airsacs. Nope. (Although I did recently back off from this suggestion, over at Tet Zoo somewhere, I think. Thanks to David M. for first jogging my thoughts in the right direction, btw.)

    And nothing could make me happier–this study is so cool.

    The press release linked, though, is maddening. Zero details on the physiology and instead a bunch of completely conjectural hand-waving about surviving the Permian mass extinction. Farmer does this all the time; she does very cool organismal work but then is always trying to spin a much much larger story of greater significance. As they say in baseball, stay within yourself!!!

  463. #468 David Marjanovi?
    January 19, 2010

    dunno what you’re whining about:

    The French science budget. Here in the lab I’m stuck with OS 10.3.9.

    At home, in IE8 for WinXP, it opens just fine.

    Where there’s a wookie there’s an ewok.

    Enter the orang pendek.

    Was ist “Betriebsratsverseucht”?
    Es ist in kein[em] Wörterbuch, das ich habe.

    Verseucht mit Betriebsräten. Infested with works councils. No wonder this is the most disgusting word of the year!

  464. #469 CJO
    January 19, 2010

    And there you have my observations on Jesus of Nazareth.

    And they provide even less insight than your tiresome ruminations on Bigfoot, if that’s even possible.

    Demythologizing the gospels is stupid. The accounts did not arise that way, by legendary accretion to stories about an actual historical figure. They are transparent fictions. The mythology is the whole point.

  465. #470 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 19, 2010

    Here in the lab I’m stuck with OS 10.3.9.

    And IIRC, you don’t want Tiger without at least 512 MB RAM (preferably 768 MB or 1 GB) and Quartz Extreme on your video card. But some of us might have a copy sitting around collecting dust. Mine is supporting the almost 9 year old, but heavily upgraded, G4 the Redhead should be using.

  466. #471 SEF
    January 19, 2010

    Enter the orang pendek.

    But if that one’s mythical, is there any cultural or other environmental reason why some groups of humans make up big hairy men to be afeared of while others make up small hairy men? Is it as simple as the availability of animals to be misidentified? Eg the US has lots of bears – hence the sasquatch is big too. Whereas Asia has a bunch of smaller primates – hence the orang pendek is small.

    The UK doesn’t have anything much at either end of the mythical hairy man spectrum. Fairies, pixies and leprechauns tend not to be portrayed as particularly hairy. Though some mermaid legends are of the hairy seal-like kind.

  467. #472 Jadehawk, OM
    January 19, 2010

    There’s also Lisowice

    Lisowice, eh? *checks google map* Damn, I could get to that one by bicycle if necessary*! No wonder it sounded familiar :-)

    Dunno if I can wait til April with flight tickets, but we’ll see.

    The French science budget. Here in the lab I’m stuck with OS 10.3.9.

    I see.

    Verseucht mit Betriebsräten. Infested with works councils. No wonder this is the most disgusting word of the year!

    If every word you can make in German actually were in the German dictionary, the damn things would be ginormous.

    —-

    *Now I just need to convince my mom that she wants to take her vacation at the same time as me, and my intra-European travel arrangements are taken care of :-p

  468. #473 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    January 19, 2010

    Ich scheitere zum Akkusitiv und Dativ. lol

  469. #474 David Marjanovi?
    January 19, 2010

    And IIRC, you don’t want Tiger without at least 512 MB RAM (preferably 768 MB or 1 GB) and Quartz Extreme on your video card.

    This here is a G5 with 1.25 GB DDR SDRAM? Tiger is 10.4, right?

    Is it as simple as the availability of animals to be misidentified? Eg the US has lots of bears – hence the sasquatch is big too. Whereas Asia has a bunch of smaller primates – hence the orang pendek is small.

    <scratching head>

    I should have thought of that one myself. Of course, the question is whether the orang pendek is mythical.

  470. #475 Owlmirror
    January 19, 2010

    Random questions about alligator lungs:

    Do the results apply to any other crocodilians?

    Are alligators considered particularly primitive among crocodilians?

    Is there any evidence for flow-through lungs in other archosaur descendants (besides Aves, obviously)?

  471. #476 Lynna, OM
    January 19, 2010

    The Governor of Idaho, Butch Otter, is campaigning to cut funding for Idaho Public Television. He has a philosophical objection to public-funded TV. Of course, he will not take away the tax-exempt status of the BYUI TV station, so we’ll still be funding them, just not in quite such an obvious way. So, we fund mormon TV to a certain extent, but we do not fund public TV.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/01/19/AR2010011901619.html

    Unfortunately, the smaller communities that most need input from diverse media sources are the ones that will suffer — if the proposal is passed. Larger population centers will still be served by IPTV.

  472. #477 cicely
    January 19, 2010

    Blasphemous Lesbian Lemur porn! With bacon!

    (Well, someone had to see the obvious next step….)

  473. #478 Lynna, OM
    January 19, 2010

    We might be better off without oversight of Idaho Public TV by the state, but there’s not enough money to keep it going without state funds. Most of Idaho is public land, and the centers of population are small, with the exception of Boise, Coeur d’Alene, and a few others.

    1981, the Idaho Legislature cut all but $70,000 of public television’s funding after it angered lawmakers with programs about logging practices and lead poisoning in northern Idaho. A year later, they relented, but required the then three stations to be operated as a statewide network under Board of Education oversight.
         And in 1999 and 2000, programs about homosexuality prompted lawmakers to require programming disclaimers.
         Rep. Steve Hartgen, R-Twin Falls, remains irked by what he said is public TV’s liberal, pro-government bias. But he’s not ready to pull the plug, saying state funding allows lawmakers to make sure things don’t go too far.
         ”It does give the state some oversight,” Hartgen said.

    This issue reminds me that having a conservative majority that is also highly religious, with a big block of mormon voters, is not good for education.

  474. #479 Owlmirror
    January 19, 2010

    Is there any evidence for flow-through lungs in other archosaur descendants (besides Aves, obviously)?

    And theropods (at least tentatively).

  475. #480 Sven DiMilo
    January 19, 2010

    Do the results apply to any other crocodilians?
    Probably. I am pretty sure they all have lungs with the necessary tubular parabronchi and nonvascularized posterior end. Not certain about gavials.

    Are alligators considered particularly primitive among crocodilians?
    Well, there are only 3 small clades left of a formerly bushy bush, but no.

    Is there any evidence for flow-through lungs in other archosaur descendants (besides Aves, obviously)?
    Everybody but birds and crocs are extinct; there is evidence (pneumatic bone) for airsacs in dinos and pteros, but no direct lung evidence whatsoever.

  476. #481 Sven DiMilo
    January 19, 2010

    Along these lines, this is very cool if you can track down a copy:
    http://www.jstor.org/pss/30161087

  477. #482 Sven DiMilo
    January 19, 2010

    I should be more patient.
    Here‘s the pdf.

  478. #483 blf
    January 19, 2010

    Yikes! Don’t get me started on the SCNF site http://www.voyages-sncf.com —it’s one of those split-personality overworked but undercooked jobs: It either works reasonably well or fails spectacularly (changing minute-by-minute it seems), has lots of gee-whizz-bang rubbish whilst is noticeably short of useful features,? and gaahhh!!!1!

     ?  Admittedly, my favourite example of a missing useful feature is (last I checked) now no longer missing: An ability to look at earlier train times when making a booking. It used to be the case you could look at later train times, but could not go backwards (or even back to where you started looking). Made it real fecking annoying to try and work out the best train(s) to book.

  479. #484 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 19, 2010

    This here is a G5 with 1.25 GB DDR SDRAM? Tiger is 10.4, right?

    Right. A G5 running Panther.

    *headdesk*

    What a waste. And if the G5 has a Core Image video card, it could run 10.5 (Leopard) properly. It will run OK without Core Image, but some graphics, like the water drop effect opening new widgets, won’t be there. OSX 10.4 would get you Safari 3 and might load Safari 4. OSX 10.5 will run Safari 4. I think both will run Firefox 3.5.

    Any European Mac user have a spare copy of Tiger or Leopard to donate to a deserving graduate student?

  480. #485 Jadehawk, OM
    January 19, 2010

    Oh NOES!!!! Demographic Winter!!! “Certain kinds of human beings [dramatic pause] are on their way to extinction”, and it’s all the feminists’, environmentalists’ and gays’ fault!

  481. #486 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    January 19, 2010

    It’s raining! People are walking with umbrellas! So much better than snow!

    *pokes Jadehawk.

  482. #487 Jadehawk, OM
    January 19, 2010

    So much better than snow!

    heathen! infidel!

    the only thing that’s better than snow is snow on mountains. currently, I have neither :-(

  483. #488 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    January 19, 2010

    You don’t like watching people freak out due to a little thunder and lightning? lol.

  484. #489 Walton
    January 19, 2010

    Normally I’m not a big fan of snow (at least the kind we tend to get in England, which tends to be weak and slushy, and often melts and then freezes over, causing you to slip every two seconds while walking). Plus, every time we get a sprinkling of snow in southern England (let alone weeks of snowfall, ice and freezing temperatures, as we had this winter) the entire transport system grinds to a halt.

    And I also think the aesthetic value of snow is overrated, for us urban-dwellers. Yes, it looks pretty for a short time when everything is covered in a pristine white blanket. But in a city, it always ends up covered in mud, slush and tyre tracks within a day.

    I will, however, admit that Jadehawk is right in one particular: snow on mountains is awesome. I’d like to live somewhere one day that has mountains.

  485. #490 Jadehawk, OM
    January 19, 2010

    You don’t like watching people freak out due to a little thunder and lightning? lol.

    I’ve seen enough of that when I lived in San Jose.

    And then again, but about minuscule amounts of snow, when I lived in Seattle.

    It’s refreshing to be in a place where people are semi-competent about the weather :-p

  486. #491 eddie
    January 19, 2010

    On Coast now: Wow! That clam is 250yrs old!

  487. #492 David Marjanovi?
    January 19, 2010

    The always well-informed Czechs haven’t started a thread on the 2010 field season yet. But the one on the 2009 one only started in September, while one of the two for 2008 started on January 14th and appears to begin with concrete information, so I think I’ll send an e-mail.

    Rorschach? Do you want to join, too, or have I misunderstood?

    Do the results apply to any other crocodilians?

    Most likely all of them.

    Are alligators considered particularly primitive among crocodilians?

    No, they’re pretty average. In fact, all surviving crocs are rather average.

    Is there any evidence for flow-through lungs in other archosaur descendants (besides Aves, obviously)?

    At a minimum all saurischians and all pterosaurs, probably more. The evidence lies in the vertebrae, which are invaded by outgrowths from the cervical and the abdominal air sac. The vertebrae of most sauropods consist of, like, 80 % air.

    Plus, only a flow-through lung can explain how it was possible to breathe through a neck twice the length of a giraffe’s. Already giraffes have a narrower windpipe than usual, so as to reduce the amount of dead space…

    but no direct lung evidence whatsoever

    Well, duh. Lungs don’t seem to ever fossilize, which isn’t exactly surprising.

    Along these lines, this is very cool

    Oh yes. If you don’t look at them closely, crocs look vaguely like overgrown lizards, but if you do, several layers of fascinating weirdness start to emerge. I’m telling you, there are reasons why crocodiles grin. B-)

    It used to be the case you could look at later train times, but could not go backwards (or even back to where you started looking).

    Wow. Never noticed that, but I’ve only been using the site for 2 years or something.

    Anyway, I confirm that sometimes it works very well and sometimes it basically just freezes. Definitely too many bells & whistles.

    Oh NOES!!!! Demographic Winter!!!

    However, all is not lost.

    One country has managed to stem this horrendous, horrendous tide.

    And that is…

    <10 minutes of drum roll>

    <entire Also sprach Zarathustra/Odyssey 2001 theme>

    …<voice mode=”booming”>France. Rampant socialism, buddies. Crčche and kindergarten for everyone and for freeeeee!!!</voice>

    <inhale>MWA HA HA HA HAAAAAH…</inhale>

    I think I see quite a lot more little babies in the public transport here than in Vienna, and almost all of them have at least one parent that belongs to <dramatic pause> a certain kind of human being.

    You don’t like watching people freak out due to a little thunder and lightning? lol.

    Where do people freak out over this?

    Also, I don’t like watching people freak out. I prefer snow. <pout>

  488. #493 Lynna, OM
    January 19, 2010

    Tying Light Into Knots

    The remarkable feat of tying light in knots has been achieved by a team of physicists working at the universities of Bristol, Glasgow and Southampton, UK, reports a paper in Nature Physics this week. Understanding how to control light in this way has important implications for laser technology used in wide a range of industries.

  489. #494 Lynna, OM
    January 19, 2010

    Jadehawk @484: Regarding “Demographic Winter”, you will not be surprised to learn that Scott Lively, The Family (The Fellowship), and other nefarious persons have commented on this, and have pumped up the scare factor.

    We discussed this in November, 2009, on the “How not to end the scourge of HIV” thread.

    Fascinating cast of characters, etc. There are multiple posts.

  490. #495 Jadehawk, OM
    January 19, 2010

    Rorschach? Do you want to join, too, or have I misunderstood?

    I think he was talking about the Party we are supposed to be having to celebrate you getting your degree.

  491. #496 eddie
    January 19, 2010

    I know many here have given up on responding to mooneyitism but it’s still often interesting when others do respond. Is there anyone called sean carrol who’s not briliant?

    Also;
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nt4SNfcd72s

  492. #497 Jadehawk, OM
    January 19, 2010

    We discussed this in November, 2009, on the “How not to end the scourge of HIV” thread.

    oh, I must have missed that. Thanks.

  493. #498 Jadehawk, OM
    January 19, 2010

    Where do people freak out over this?

    in California, where anything that isn’t perfect beach-weather is considered a catastrophe of biblical proportions, and every rain-cloud is subject to 24/7 “storm-watch” coverage on the news

  494. #499 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    January 19, 2010

    Where do people freak out over this?

    I was at my university’s dinning area when we all saw a quick flash and heard a large boom, followed by a bunch of student screaming and the other student giggling.

  495. #500 Lynna, OM
    January 19, 2010

    oh, I must have missed that. Thanks.

    You’re welcome. You have to read down a bit from the link I gave you to get the full picture. aratina cage made some interesting comments in that thread. Also, see post 154 in that thread,, where Caine calls Demographic Winter “venomous bullshit.”

  496. #501 SteveM
    January 19, 2010

    in California, where anything that isn’t perfect beach-weather is considered a catastrophe of biblical proportions, and every rain-cloud is subject to 24/7 “storm-watch” coverage on the news

    As a recent transplant from New England to California (SF Bay area), this amuses me to no end. These people have no idea what bad weather is.

  497. #502 eddie
    January 19, 2010

    Even tho they missed the reference, Mr T’s response @416, to Owlmirror’s #416 was awesome in it’s own right.

  498. #503 David Marjanovi?
    January 19, 2010

    Oh yeah, when I rewrote that comment from scratch (vox.com signed me out), I forgot to add the following to the end again:

    Allons, enfants de la pa-triii-i-euh,
    le jour de boire est arrivé!
    [...]
    Aux verres, citoyens,
    buvons nos flacons,
    buvons, buvons, qu’un vin bien pur
    a-breeeeeu-veuh nos poumons !!!

    causing you to slip every two seconds while walking

    You need some training. Expect to slip. Start to slide deliberately. I never slip when I expect the ground to be unpredictable, and sliding along can be great fun!

    so I think I’ll send an e-mail.

    Done.

  499. #504 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    January 19, 2010

    As a recent transplant from New England to California (SF Bay area), this amuses me to no end. These people have no idea what bad weather is.

    Come to SoCal, live in our heat during the summer. It’s pretty bad, lol. (Not nearly as bad or dry as some places, still I rather that my AC isn’t on.)

  500. #505 AJ Milne
    January 19, 2010

    Heathen! infidel!

    … Speak it. We must find this (spits vehemently) accursed pikachu and make them see the error of their ways!!!

    (… counts exclamation marks, concludes that, clearly, there just aren’t enough up there yet…)

    !!!!!!

    (/…in other news, in five days I will be in Whistler. My legs are getting all restless already. If anyone needs me, I’ll be in the basement, standing on my board, with my hands over my tips and my eyes closed.)

  501. #506 David Marjanovi?
    January 19, 2010

    followed by a bunch of student screaming and the other student[s?] giggling.

    :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D

    So your university is in it-never-rains-in-southern-California?

    arrivé!

    arrivé !

    Mčre. Deux.

  502. #507 Lynna, OM
    January 19, 2010

    Steve Benson gets in trouble for making fun of Pat Robertson. See cartoon at http://comics.com/steve_benson/2010-01-17/

    [Steve Benson writes,] Got this stern reprimand from an individual who obviously missed or is ignoring Robertson’s goofy assertion that God punished Haiti with an earthquake because they chose to join Satan’s team as long as Satan would help them throw off French colonial rule:
         ”Steve: God will have the last word for those who mock his anointed. Operation Blessing was the first functional relief organization on the ground in Haiti following the earth quake…not the U.N. or The Salvation Army nor The Red Cross. Furthermore you are ignorant of Haiti’s historical spiritual strongholds as a Nation.”
    _____
    My reply: “So, when Pat Robertson on the 700 Club last week declared that God had hit Haiti with a killer earthquake because 200 years ago the Haitians made a pact with the Devil to follow him if he would rid them of French colonial rule, Robertson was really saying that God killed thousands of Haitians under earthquake rubble because of ‘Haiti’s historical spiritual strongholds as a Nation??
    _____
    Roberton’s water carrier responded: “Steve: Your theology is backward. God saves & is moving through His people to rescue Haitians. Satan comes to kill, steal & destroy those who worship the devil. If you think that is funny you need a reality check Bro.”
    _____
    My answer: “Yeah, right. Tell that to Robertson, who claimed that God punished Haiti with an earthquake because of their devil worship. He didn?t say anything about Satan creating the quake:
         ”‘Pat Robertson Says Haiti Paying for ‘Pact to the Devil,’ CNN, 13 January 2010, at: http://www.cnn.com/2010/US/01/13/haiti.pat.robertson/index.html ; to view the video of Robertson’s claim of a fulfilled prophecy, see: ‘Robertson’s “true story”: Haiti “swore a pact to the devil” to get “free from the French” and “ever since, they have been cursed,”‘ broadcast from Christian Broadcasting Network’s ‘The 700 Club,’ 13 January 2010, at: http://mediamatters.org/mmtv/201001130024)”

  503. #508 Jadehawk, OM
    January 19, 2010

    (/…in other news, in five days I will be in Whistler.

    oh, fun! I’ve been there once, with a friend from Vancouver. Snow and weather were shitty then, but it was still a cool weekend.

  504. #509 Knockgoats
    January 19, 2010

    Lynna@492,

    Amazing! Thanks. Knot theory is one of the most fascinating branches of mathematics for an amateur – and contains many deep, unsolved problems. I have a popular book on the subject on my shelves. However it’s not true, as the linked article says, that until now knot theory has been considered completely abstract. DNA strands can get knotted, and there are special enzymes, called topoisomerases, which knot and unknot it. In chemistry, synthesising knotted molecules is part of the study of isomers – different molecules made of the same combination of atoms. Knot theory also has deep connections with statistical mechanics.

    On a lighter note, this reminds me of a British series of children’s books about an eccentric scientist (oh well, at least not a mad or evil one) called Professor Branestawm. The Prof. wrote a letter to the Water Board (in the good old pre-Thatcher days, the UK had a municipally-owned water supply system), complaining that the water was coming out of his taps twisted. The Water Board wrote back saying they didn’t mind that, but if it started coming out in knots, to please let them know!

  505. #510 Brownian, OM
    January 19, 2010

    I’d like to live somewhere one day that has mountains.

    Blech. You can have the ones here. I’ll never understand the appeal of camping in the mountains. I live in a part of the world that only has three or four snow-free months and the first thing people want to do is go as soon as the weather warms is find the only place in the province that still has snow, like Jasper or Banff, and set up a tent near a glacier?! I’ll take Mai Tais and palm trees any day.

    (/…in other news, in five days I will be in Whistler. My legs are getting all restless already. If anyone needs me, I’ll be in the basement, standing on my board, with my hands over my tips and my eyes closed.)

    This is exactly the sort of up-to-no-goodery I’m talking about, AJ.

    Tying Light Into Knots

    That’s awesome. In the most tangential manner, that reminds me of this delightful puzzle game.

  506. #511 Lynna, OM
    January 19, 2010

    Knockgoats @508:

    However it’s not true, as the linked article says, that until now knot theory has been considered completely abstract. DNA strands can get knotted, and there are special enzymes, called topoisomerases, which knot and unknot it. In chemistry, synthesising knotted molecules is part of the study of isomers – different molecules made of the same combination of atoms. Knot theory also has deep connections with statistical mechanics.

    Ahhh. Excellent addition of info. I didn’t know that. This is what I like about Pharyngula!

  507. #512 David Marjanovi?
    January 19, 2010

    I’ve [link] been there once

    :-) :-) :-)

  508. #513 AJ Milne
    January 19, 2010

    Oh, fun! I’ve been there once, with a friend from Vancouver.

    I seriously can’t wait. I’ve been training on my local regular hill almost nightly, and doing cardio stuff and strength stuff at home in faint hopes of being halfway ready for that kind of drop and that much powder, and everyone I mention it to is warning me after this mountain, I will be forever spoiled for the East coast.

    This is exactly the sort of up-to-no-goodery I’m talking about, AJ…

    Yeah, I realize… But I figure to make me pay now, the sick-of-winter lynch mob is gonna have to come into the mountains to get me. I figure I’m safe for a bit, anyway…

    (/Granted, they’ll probably be waiting at the airport when I get back with a noose, too… But by then, fuck, who cares. I’ll die happy.)

  509. #515 Lynna, OM
    January 19, 2010

    Is the LDS Church trying to buy a controlling interest in the Salt Lake Tribune? Jeeezus christ, I hope not. Sometimes the Salt Lake Tribune reporters are the only force keeping the LDS Church honest when it comes to Utah politics.
    http://www.cityweekly.net/utah/blog-2955-lds-church-vs-city-weekly.html

    Doesn’t sound good though. The Tribune is bleeding money and the church has money. Shades of Rev. Moon buying the Washington Times.

  510. #516 David Marjanovi?
    January 19, 2010

    Already got a reply! Information on the digs should start to become available in March.

  511. #517 AJ Milne
    January 19, 2010

    I’ll take Mai Tais and palm trees any day.

    See, I’m not agin’ that, either, exactly… With enough iced drinks, no particular need to move through the air, and plenty of sufficiently cool water to swim in and/or sail on, even I can stand summer. Briefly, anyway.

    But too much of the reality of summer for me is nothing like that. It mostly seems to be about stinking, overheated, humid cities, trying and failing to breathe ground level ozone and worse, and this awful sense of intellectual torpor. Seriously, I feel like I lose 20 points off the top of my IQ in the months around the summer solstice… Sometime ago, I came to the conclusion my body’s cooling systems completely suck, and my CNS starts going on the fritz even when mildly overheated… I’ve always figured it’s probably some nasty side effect of having spent the first three years of my life somewhere around 60 degrees North.

    (/So summer’s label sez, for me: Warning, take only with ice-cold beer and/or margaritas.)

  512. #518 Brownian, OM
    January 19, 2010

    (/Granted, they’ll probably be waiting at the airport when I get back with a noose, too… But by then, fuck, who cares. I’ll die happy.)

    Not without snow tires I won’t. You’re safe…for now.

    (Okay, so the roads are fine. I’d still rather be rollin’ with my windows down.)

  513. #519 Walton
    January 19, 2010

    On a lighter note, this reminds me of a British series of children’s books about an eccentric scientist (oh well, at least not a mad or evil one) called Professor Branestawm. The Prof. wrote a letter to the Water Board (in the good old pre-Thatcher days, the UK had a municipally-owned water supply system), complaining that the water was coming out of his taps twisted. The Water Board wrote back saying they didn’t mind that, but if it started coming out in knots, to please let them know!

    I remember those books! In primary school, I think I even dressed up as Professor Branestawm once (using a shower cap to create a high bald forehead, as I recall) for a “come dressed as your favourite book character” day.

    I’m not going to rise to the bait about the Glorious People’s Commissariat of Water Supply, of course…

  514. #520 Knockgoats
    January 19, 2010

    Of course, now water is privatised, you get to choose whether it twists or not – and if it does, which way – as it comes out of the tap ;-0

  515. #521 Walton
    January 19, 2010

    Of course, now water is privatised, you get to choose whether it twists or not – and if it does, which way – as it comes out of the tap ;-0

    Unlike the good old days of socialised water, when government inspectors made sure everyone’s water twisted to the left, like good socialist water. If you were suspected of twisting your water to the right, you’d be up before the Communist Fascist Death Panel before Sarah Palin could say “You betcha!”

    (I’m not quite sure whether I’m making fun of socialists or conservatives here, or both. Bah. A plague on both their houses.)

  516. #522 Sven DiMilo
    January 19, 2010

    Weather? We are burining valuable Threadwidth talking about weather?

    Now, water supply: fascinating history there, of engineering breakthroughs and grand schemes. Cadillac Desert, fossil aquifers, all that shit.

    I have been learning about the old Brooklyn Water Works. Brookyn, in the years before it became a borough of NYC and back when it was the third largest city in North America, used to get its water via an amazing system of reservoirs, giant conduits, and steam-powered pumps from further east on Long Island (including the “lake ” across the street from which i live).

  517. #523 Sven DiMilo
    January 19, 2010

    burining

    to burin: chatting listlessly and aimlessly about random, trivial subjects.

  518. #524 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 19, 2010

    Wait – I thought Knot theory was a hotly contested subject only amongst knitters.

  519. #525 Sven DiMilo
    January 19, 2010

    Here‘s a good read!

  520. #526 Jadehawk, OM
    January 19, 2010

    Already got a reply! Information on the digs should start to become available in March.

    :-)

    I should be able to hold off on buying the tickets until then. That makes me happier.

  521. #527 Knockgoats
    January 19, 2010

    Why knit?
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    Why knot?

    Nighty-night!

  522. #528 A. Noyd
    January 19, 2010

    Gyeong Hwa Pak (#487)

    You don’t like watching people freak out due to a little thunder and lightning?

    The thunder in Seattle sometimes sounds like buildings exploding and then collapsing. That’s freaked me out a few times before I realized it was only one of our rare storms.

  523. #529 Day
    January 19, 2010

    So did David from Canada ever return, or did he end up being eaten as well?

  524. #530 Jadehawk, OM
    January 19, 2010

    The thunder in Seattle sometimes sounds like buildings exploding and then collapsing. That’s freaked me out a few times before I realized it was only one of our rare storms.

    yeah, thunderstorms sound like that over here, too. And they look Epic, as well, because you can have a single lightning-bolt go across the entire sky; which is HUGE here in the prairie.

  525. #531 John Morales
    January 19, 2010

    Day, David fC is one of a few who’ve appeared honestly inquisitive, asked questions, were directed to a wealth of resources, and never returned.

    Make of that what you will…

  526. #532 Jadehawk, OM
    January 19, 2010

    like this, for example.

  527. #533 'Tis Himself, OM
    January 19, 2010
  528. #534 MrFire
    January 19, 2010

    And…SHHHHHIIIIIIIIT

    Coakley concedes the Senate race to Scott Brown.

  529. #535 RickR
    January 19, 2010

    On that note, I just got a call from the RNC, laying out the case that the Republicans? are BACK!! and would I please be willing to donate $100.00 in the fight to defeat Obama’s policies??

    I let the caller run on and on with his script, thinking the time he wasted with me would be time he wouldn’t have to proselytize to an actual Repubtard. When he had finished his spiel, I calmly informed him “Well, I’m a “big L liberal democrat socialist Muslim fairy, so…….no.”

    Then I hung up.

  530. #536 llewelly
    January 19, 2010

    The Astronomy Picture of the Day is interesting. It’s a Martian landscape that looks surrealistic.

    That pic appeared in the RSS feed for HiRISE some time ago. Probably 1 in 5 is comparably weird and beautiful – the rest a pretty too, but only moderately weird. One of the many I like.

  531. #537 Lynna, OM
    January 20, 2010

    Just to join the discussion about lightning: here are a couple of storm and lightning photos my brother Leland took.
    http://www.wildernessbooks.com/lee/lee/owhyee_river_lightning.html
    http://www.wildernessbooks.com/lee/lee/natures_glory.html

  532. #538 Feynmaniac
    January 20, 2010

    Here’s a nice article on knot theory.

  533. #539 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    January 20, 2010

    Those are very beautiful pictures Lynna. I like the one with the rainbow over the field. I reminds me of the time I say a tripple rainbow.

  534. #540 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 20, 2010

    Lynna, Leland is an artist with his photographs. Unfortunately, only the Redhead’s work in on our walls.

  535. #541 Lynna, OM
    January 20, 2010

    Those are very beautiful pictures Lynna. I like the one with the rainbow over the field. I reminds me of the time I say a tripple rainbow.

    If you see a triple anything in nature isn’t that supposed to instantly convert you to a brand of christianity that worships the dogma of the Trinity? :-)

    Reflector of the Light of God

  536. #542 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 20, 2010

    Dang, those typo cooties. …work ins on our walls.

  537. #543 Miki Z
    January 20, 2010

    Growing up in Alaska, double rainbows, circular rainbows, and rainbows in the middle of the night were not all that uncommon (although still very cool). I don’t think I’ve ever seen a triple, though.

  538. #544 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    January 20, 2010

    If you see a triple anything in nature isn’t that supposed to instantly convert you to a brand of christianity that worships the dogma of the Trinity? :-)
    Reflector of the Light of God

    I suppose so. But since they were rainbows I suspect they want me in Valhalla. Or join a gay church. lol.

  539. #545 Owlmirror
    January 20, 2010

    @Sven and David M.: Thanks for the archosaur metabolism/palaeo xrefs.

    Possibly relevant regarding knots:

    http://fold.it

  540. #546 Lynna, OM
    January 20, 2010

    I remember seeing lots of “sun dogs” in Alaska. The most spectacular sky display, though, was the northern lights.

    Hmmm. As far as joining a gay church, if you see a triple rainbow, don’t you have to join a triple-gay church? I like the idea of a triple-gay church.

    Change of subject warning: Here’s a Moment of Mormon Madness. Or rather, years and years of madness. The information is from an anonymous poster on exmormon.org

    I too was a Sex-offender therapist in Utah.
         After reading through that thread started by Changed Man, it triggered a thought. I remember when working with sex-offenders and their parole officers in half-way houses, being shocked at what they were being asked to do as part of getting out of the half-way house. They were supposed to be getting a support network around them, for their eventual transition into society. Guess what one of the things they were supposed to be doing if they were LDS? Going to singles dances!
         They would have to report on their employment searches, and support networks. If they were LDS, and hadn’t thought of singles dances on their own, it was usually suggested to them by one of the law enforcement staff.
         At the time I thought, holy shit, these mormon women have no idea that there is a meeting taking place where a rapist/molester etc. is being told that he should come to your dance to meet you! It wasn’t an isolated incident, it happened over and over. Sending the offenders to LDS singles dances was just part of the routine of getting back into the community.
         One situation that stood out was a 50 year old single man that was gay. He also was mentally retarded. He was very effeminate and child like and had been sort of adopted by the older members of his ward. …
         He was known for his bizzare sexual habits(he would often steal nylon coats from the local schools,throw them in a pile,strip naked,fall on the coats and masturbate).One day he had oral sex with one of the boys in town. The kid was not LDS and so the ward blamed the boy. He “made it up”. The problem with this was that the guy admitted to it. He admitted to having sex at rest stops with guys he didn’t know. He admitted to his coat fetish. NO ONE in the church would believe him. They thought he was joking.
         Anyways,he was convicted and placed into a mentally handicapped program. The church members did try to keep him away from kids “so he wouldn’tbe falsely accused again”. … a friend of mine who was the membership clerk saw his record. He said that he was a member in good standing.

  541. #547 Miki Z
    January 20, 2010

    He was convicted of statutory rape, forcible rape, or being gay and handicapped?

  542. #548 llewelly
    January 20, 2010

    ‘Tis Himself, OM | January 19, 2010 9:28 PM:

    Waterspout over Tampa Bay.

    Your link does not work unless I forge the referer to http://www.caedes.net/
    Otherwise it takes me to an image which threatens that chihuahuas are comming to get me for stealing images.
    Here’s another waterspout. (From here .)
    And another.

  543. #549 Blind Squirrel FCD
    January 20, 2010

    Third and forth order rainbow. Very rare.

    BS

  544. #550 Lynna, OM
    January 20, 2010

    Miki Z @546: Sorry, I don’t know what the conviction was. I assume statutory rape. I went back to the original post to see if there was more info on the handicapped gay guy, but no.

  545. #551 mythusmage
    January 20, 2010

    #282

    David (Also Sven, but I’ve lost his comment on the Yowie (I do things like that)),

    There are reports of finding sasquatch hair and feces. I haven’t been able to check them out, and while there are reports on DNA testing etc., write ups in the scientific literature aren’t there as far as I can find.

    The stories have it that the hair and fecal samples contain genetic material that is not human, not even bear. What it is, according to the tales, is primate, but not any species currently known.

    On a related note there was a report our of Calgary, Alberta Canada wherein a pair of young men out in a rural area heard a noise late at night. It being over cast, and them out in the boonies, the night was very dark, and our investigators forgot to take a light. So there they were, flailing about unable to see anything clearly.

    They saw something large, got excited, and decided it had to be a sasquatch. But they weren’t able to catch it, though they did manage to get a few, short hairs.

    The hairs they managed to get a local professor to test. According to the test our intrepid souls had discovered, the bison. Last I heard they still insist they had seen a sasquatch.

    As for the yowie, which Sven asked about, let us start with the Wallace line. A line between two faunas; the South East Asian to the west, and the Australian to the east. In the one you have primates. In the other you have tree kangaroos.

    There are a few animals shared between the two faunas. Birds for example, and bats (I think). Also humans, dogs, and some rodents. These last animals that could reach Australia from South-East Asia via boats, or by hitching a ride from those with the tech.

    But what about yowies? How did they get to Australia, when they had no boats, and apparently never hitched a ride with the humans. And keep in mind that Australia broke off from Africa a long time before apes evolved.

    The yowie, from what I can tell, is that the yowie is an example of Aussie humor, only that.

  546. #552 mythusmage
    January 20, 2010

    289,

    BDC

    Creationists are offering evidence now?

  547. #553 boygenius
    January 20, 2010

    mythicalmage:

    There are reports of finding sasquatch hair and feces. I haven’t been able to check them out, and while there are reports on DNA testing etc., write ups in the scientific literature aren’t there as far as I can find.

    The stories have it that the hair and fecal samples contain genetic material that is not human, not even bear. What it is, according to the tales, is primate, but not any species currently known.

    ‘Nuff said. Please?

  548. #554 boygenius
    January 20, 2010

    Friggin’ blockquote fail!!! ‘Nuff said. Please? is me, obviously. Also, emphasis mine. Duh.

  549. #555 mythusmage
    January 20, 2010

    #436

    Rohrsharch,

    Never ascribe to bi-polar disorder what can adequately be explained by Aspergers.

  550. #556 John Morales
    January 20, 2010

    mm,

    The yowie, from what I can tell, is that the yowie is an example of Aussie humor, only that.

    Is it that they’re all scams, or because you need them to be scams?
    Why the need to deny Yowie? Were you ordered to? Is it because you disagreed with His message of peace and love in favor of violent revolution? Did you deny Him three times before the cock crowed?

    PS Ctrl-F is your friend, and the post you’ve lost is #445.

    PPS Similar alleged creatures outside of North America.

  551. #557 mythusmage
    January 20, 2010

    #555

    Boygenius,

    What strange compulsion forces you to read me?

    And since I’m writing…

    On David Marjanovic’s Macintosh

    Are you barred from upgrading the OS on your Mac? If not then I recommend getting a copy of either Leopard or Snow Leopard.

    On the Orang Pendak

    The first thing to note here is that the orang pendak is taken more seriously than other cyptid apes. Something to do with the relative lack of fakes and hoaxes where evidence is concerned, and the relative lack of a hostile reaction from scientist (might be because assholes and jerks haven’t produced all that much in the way of fakes related to it).

    Then again, the orang utan turns out to be more bipedal than any other great ape with the exception of humans. Forget where, but I think in National Geographic there is an article on the animal that points that out.

    So the orang pendak may be a subspecies of orang utan, or even just a population of one of the two established subspecies. Considering how long the species has been around, and the varied territory it lives in, it would seem there’s been some evolving going on.

  552. #558 386sx for a hundred, Alex!!
    January 20, 2010

    I love it when drudgereport.com doesn’t try to influence politics. They’re just so fair and balanced over there.

    Current headline:

    “NOW… WILL HE RUN FOR PRESIDENT?”

    They report, you decide!

  553. #559 mythusmage
    January 20, 2010

    #555

    John Morales,

    Where’s the evidence? Did they take the ferry from Jakarta?

    And why are you blathering on about this when people have asked you to stop? I swear, you show all the signs of being bi-circular. I mean, when are you going to provide proof that Vishnu sleeps at the very center of reality, and all of reality is but the product of his dreaming? That is, after all, really what you’re talking about, isn’t it?

    I mean, why should we take seriously anybody who believes in some cosmic vatch with an esoteric taste in halleucinogenics?

    (Yowies = Vishnu, a simple equation!)

    (Vatch: cf The Witches of Karres)

  554. #560 boygenius
    January 20, 2010

    mythicalmagic:

    Boygenius,

    What strange compulsion forces you to read me?

    Have you ever witnessed a train wreck? Were you able to look away?

    That said, can anyone tutor me on how to create a killfile. Can I do it through Movable Type? I’m admittedly clueless on this subject.

  555. #561 A. Noyd
    January 20, 2010

    @ mythusmage

    Sooooo, have you found me a quote or two of people saying anything like “the lack of evidence means we can’t go looking” or are you ready to admit you’ve imagined this anti-sasquatch prejudice we’re supposed to be feeling? This should be so easy; you don’t have to step outside the blog. How do you hope to change our minds on the beastie itself if you can’t even produce a single quote to show us we’re being tripped up by our “inner creationist”?

    On the other hand, here are your own words: “[T]oo many people have an emotional investment in sasquatch being a lie. … You have become afraid to admit to error, you and many more besides.”

    Which I originally compared to those of an actual creationist and can now compare to the words of a paranoid lunatic confused about science over on Respectful Insolence: “It boils down to this – if you entertain the thought that vaccines are bad and I’ve been grossly lied to about the benefits and risks then it EXPLODES the world you believe in. And most people don’t want to go there.”

    See the theme here? Doesn’t it worry you?

    Now get to work. Show us what we’ve said that makes you think we’re sasquatch deniers too invested in our sasquatch-free worldview to confront the “evidence” with the proper level of reverence. Slaughter us with our own words. If you can’t, then admit you made a mistake, shut the fuck up, and try to learn enough about science and skepticism that you stop sounding like a creationist or a vaccine denying conspiracy theorist.

  556. #562 llewelly
    January 20, 2010

    Peer-reviewed Research Shows Richard Dawkins Can Change Minds.

    Azim F. Shariff, Adam B. Cohen, and Ara Norenzayan have recently published a paper, The Devil?s Advocate: Secular Arguments Diminish both Implicit and Explicit Religious Belief . ( Journal of Cognition and Culture 8 (2008) 417?423 )

    I found it by way of the most recent Reasonable Doubts podcast. (Starting at about 16:20 .)

    Anyone who reads pharyngula long enough will encounter a story from regular commenter about how their mind was changed by a “strident” atheist, such as Bertrand Russell, Richard Dawkins, Daniel Dennet, Christopher Hitchens, Sam Harris, or PZ Myers. A few of the atheists interviewed in D.J. Grothe’s long running Point Of Inquiry podcast have told similar stories.

    Yet many opponents of so-called “New Atheism”, or “Militant Atheism” claim the arguments of Richard Dawkins will not change minds. And from there, the argument seems to devolve into a war of anecdotes.

    But now there has been a scientific test – a limited, small-scale test, but a test nonetheless.

    Abstract:

    The religion-science debate has heated up in recent years, with polemical arguments on both side decrying the other. Given that the dominant view is of religiousness as a relatively fixed personality trait, all of this furor seems excessive. Interested in just how malleable religiousness is, we exposed half of our participants to an argument against the existence of God by Richard Dawkins. Those exposed to Dawkins? arguments showed lower self-reported religiousness, as well as less implicit association between religion and truth. These results demonstrate the flexibility of trait religiousness.

    Discussion:

    The results strongly suggest that religious beliefs can be diminished, at both implicit and explicit levels, by arguments such as that of Professor Dawkins. Those reading the Dawkins passage were significantly less likely to endorse our religiosity items including statements such as “I consider myself a religious person” and “My personal religious beliefs are very important to me.” Though the possibility of an effect was predicted, the degree to which explicit beliefs were reduced surprised us. Self- reported belief in God, for instance, dropped by more than a full point on a 5-point scale.

    The Dawkins passage used appears to be The “know-nothings”, the “know-alls”, and the “no-contests”, which appeared in The Nullifidian, December 1994 .

    The authors do note some limitations, particularly:

    It remains to be seen how long lasting the effects of arguments such as that of Professor Dawkins actually are. People’s beliefs, both implicit and explicit, can be influenced by their immediate environments (Devine, 1989). The brief exposures that people from religious backgrounds have with secular arguments may be rapidly overwhelmed by more pervasive exposure to their religiously saturated communities. Nonetheless, the current results do demonstrate the effectiveness of pro-evolutionary, anti-religion arguments, as well as the existence of a certain fluidity in people’s religious convictions.

    It can often seem futile to argue with believers. But there is evidence minds can be changed by atheist arguments. Next time you find yourself wondering if anyone’s mind will be changed by your arguing with a theist, come back, and read the paper I have written about. Do not give up hope. Minds can be changed.

  557. #563 Walton
    January 20, 2010

    It can often seem futile to argue with believers. But there is evidence minds can be changed by atheist arguments. Next time you find yourself wondering if anyone’s mind will be changed by your arguing with a theist, come back, and read the paper I have written about. Do not give up hope. Minds can be changed.

    Did you need a paper to tell you that? I’m the living proof; my de-conversion occurred while I’ve been commenting here, and I haven’t been quiet about it.

    Admittedly, it’s not as simple as “Pharyngula changed my mind”. I already had considerable doubts before I ever started commenting here, and was on a gradual road towards non-belief. But it certainly accelerated the process.

    I would also add that I don’t think it’s particularly worthwhile, in and of itself, to “evangelise” for atheism. It is worthwhile to try and convert people to a pro-science worldview, and to campaign on important issues like gay rights, proper science teaching in schools, and secularism. But it isn’t necessary for everyone to be an atheist in order to support these things. It’s IMO far more worthwhile to try and persuade conservative/fundamentalist believers to convert to a more liberal and flexible form of religion, than to try and convert relatively moderate believers (as I used to be) to atheism. In the end, atheism isn’t a religion; it’s a simple state of not believing in any gods. And, self-evidently, the non-existent gods don’t care whether people believe in them or not. What I care about is the actual effect of people’s beliefs; and conservative/fundamentalist religion is a million times more harmful to the world than moderate religion.

  558. #564 John Morales
    January 20, 2010

    Walton,

    What I care about is the actual effect of people’s beliefs; and conservative/fundamentalist religion is a million times more harmful to the world than moderate religion.

    I think you’re equivocating between someone’s beliefs and their religion.

    For me, the difference between what you refer to as “conservative/fundamentalist religion” and what you refer to as “moderate religion” is the degree of zealousness of an adherent, at least in regards to the Abrahamic religions.

  559. #565 Rorschach
    January 20, 2010

    “Study” had 106 participants, who were Uni students, so had some intelligence presumably, hardly representative of the general population.

    Interesting, in a way, but not more then that.

    I would also add that I don’t think it’s particularly worthwhile, in and of itself, to “evangelise” for atheism

    Walton, stay away from the rwandan coffee, I don’t think it agrees with you !
    Who evangelises for atheism ? All people point out, here, or in the public sphere, is the shortcomings of religion, noone is running around yelling “join the non-stamp-collecting society” !

  560. #566 llewelly
    January 20, 2010

    Walton | January 20, 2010 5:19 AM:

    Did you need a paper to tell you that? I’m the living proof; my de-conversion occurred while I’ve been commenting here, and I haven’t been quiet about it.

    I was thinking of stories like yours when I decided to post this. I certainly appreciate conversion stories, and I think there are plenty to be found on pharyngula and similar places. However, from a scientific standpoint, it is important to see the ideas implied by these stories tested under controlled conditions.

    Additionally – comments claiming the minds of believers cannot be changed are sometimes made here, and I thought the paper in question provided a new way to argue against those claims. Narratives like yours probably appeal to more people, but research changes minds too, and I think it’s important to apply multiple strategies.

  561. #567 SEF
    January 20, 2010

    Off-topic (!):

    Why men use prostitutes. US readers need to bear in mind that political definitions differ in the UK and that far fewer UK people attend religious services overall (so you can’t directly compare those sorts of things with your own experience but would instead need to see how they relate to the actual local population norms).

    From the PDF, an interesting parallel:

    Of the men studied, 44% reported that their first use of women in prostitution occurred when they were below the age of 21. … between 50-75% of women entered prostitution before they were 18

    It’s a shame they don’t have figures for the same ages of each. It looks as though youth is a big factor on both sides. It’s far easier to trap females into prostitution when young (no options, poor self-image) and also somewhat easier to convince males it’s an OK thing if they get inducted into that culture when young. But the males reported also easily adopting the habits of other males and other places where it’s regarded as OK (and tended to down-play the significance of the fact that the women were coerced – and from how young an age that had been for most).

  562. #568 llewelly
    January 20, 2010

    “Rorschach” | January 20, 2010 5:52 AM:

    “Study” had 106 participants, who were Uni students, so had some intelligence presumably, hardly representative of the general population

    That’s why I referred to it as “a limited, small-scale test”.

    But your decision to put quotes around the word ‘study’ is irresponsible; it is real research, and the researchers are entirely honest about its limitations. You, on the other hand, try to imply it has no importance. That is a mistake on your part.

  563. #569 negentropyeater
    January 20, 2010

    Additionally – comments claiming the minds of believers cannot be changed are sometimes made here, and I thought the paper in question provided a new way to argue against those claims.

    Seems to me the claim that is more often made here is that the minds of a certain type of believers cannot be changed. Those whose delusions completely incapacitate them of the simplest form of critical reasoning and evidence based thought. That paper doesn’t provide a way to argue against this claim.

  564. #570 Rorschach
    January 20, 2010

    llewelly,

    What I am implying is that it has no statistical significance.

  565. #571 SEF
    January 20, 2010

    Seems to me the claim that is more often made here is that the minds of a certain type of believers cannot be changed.

    Indeed, there’s more an expectation of a huge pool of mediocrity, of moderate religionists, of cowardly potential atheists and other assorted fence-sitters who could conceivably be reached with sufficient remedial education and unremitting application of reason.

    The problem being that, even though this mediocrity can individually be pinned down into acknowledging that they don’t really believe much of their religion (and don’t really know much about reality nor even about what they pretend to know about religion!), it’s debatable whether they’re worth having on side. They’re liable to want to maintain their comfortable cover within society and to revert to their normal non-thinking habits – or even to be convinced of the reverse point of view the next moment they encounter another charismatic religiot.

    It’s hard to civilise their minds in the first place but also hard to get them to retain and maintain that level of civilisation (ie as active mental processes). The ones who were capable of it (ie sufficiently intellectually honest and brave) would already have obtained it for themselves.

    Obviously it’s important to try and stop the fundies claiming the mediocrity as their own; but the average dishonest, lazy, cowardly, unthinking human is not a great asset in its own right for the truth-seeking (ie atheism and science) side.

  566. #572 SEF
    January 20, 2010

    Think of them as pawns in a reverse Overton Window game:

    If the large mass of mediocrity are generally held away from flocking with the religious nutters (both the dangerously insane and the criminally manipulative) and giving them protective cover, then those religious nutters can more properly be seen for the extremists and conmen that they are. So the big flock of sheeple will then be even more discouraged from hanging out with the rabid dogs and voracious wolves – despite the unlikelihood of the sheeple suddenly becoming sensible in their own right.

  567. #573 Knockgoats
    January 20, 2010

    llewelly,

    Thanks for that reference – interesting. However, I’d strongly criticise a couple of aspects:
    1) The first four of the six questions of the self-report questionnaire assume that the subject is religious:
    ?My personal religious beliefs are very important
    to me?,
    ?My religion or faith is an important part of my identity?,
    ?If someone
    wanted to understand who I am as a person, my religion or faith would be
    very important in that?,
    ?I believe strongly in the teachings of my religion or faith?
    2) The r-values for correlation between self-report and implicit measures are quite low, and many statisticians would say r is not a robust measure anyway.

  568. #574 Miki Z
    January 20, 2010

    I would worry about the Hawthorne effect with the study as well. It’s not unreasonable to suppose that if you have someone reading a passage which hints that they’re a moron for being religious and then ask if they’re religious, you may affect the answer more than the thinking. It’s an interesting study, and I don’t have any suggestions on how to improve it, but what it says is pretty narrow.

  569. #575 SEF
    January 20, 2010

    Pretty geology – but only allowed to remain that way because of its lack of mineral value!

  570. #576 Sven DiMilo
    January 20, 2010

    Third and forth order rainbow. Very rare.

    Cool, but not rare at all. Problem is that to see them, you have to be looking right at the sun.

  571. #577 aratina cage of the OM
    January 20, 2010

    Growing up in Alaska… -Miki Z

    It’s good to see another Pharynguloid from the Last Frontier! :)

  572. #578 Sven DiMilo
    January 20, 2010

    Imagine (if necessary) yourself a molecular biologist. You’ve got all the tools needed to isolate, amplify, and sequence DNA (these don’t come cheap even today btw; nobody, not even molecular biologists, has the apparatus set up in the kitchen). You are brought a hair or shit sample from North America.

    Now you have to primer out a gene of interest, PCR-amplify it, and run it through the auto-sequencer. BLAST the resulting sequence.

    WTF? Seems to cluster with primates? Try another gene or two. Maybe a mitochondrial.

    Still a primate, but not any known species?

    Yes, now is the time to shut up about your incredible discovery and maybe leak out a surreptitious “tale” or anonymous internet “report.”

    This shit is just so fucking stupid it makes my eyeballs hurt.

  573. #579 Miki Z
    January 20, 2010

    This happens more than you would believe, Sven. I’ve got proofs of P vs. NP and the Hodge Conjecture. I just keep them secret to keep people guessing. I’ll release them when it stops being funny.

  574. #580 Miki Z
    January 20, 2010

    Coincidentally, my wife is watching “Bones” right now, with this great quote by a UFO-nut:

    I know things. People laugh at me, but I know things, and I deserve a little respect for that.

    Springs to mind for some reason.

  575. #581 AJ Milne
    January 20, 2010

    …the average dishonest, lazy, cowardly, unthinking human is not a great asset in its own right for the truth-seeking (ie atheism and science) side…

    I know there’s a larger context to this statement, and you do later go to saying that, regardless, you do want to keep these people away from religion anyway. And this I’d agree with, regardless.

    I’d also add, however, that assuming (if anyone is) even said segment of the population is unchangeable would be unreasonably pessimistic.

    My view is: people are naturally curious, at the very least. There’s an awful lot of ways of subverting that curiosity, an awful lot of ways of distracting yourself with minutiae and trivia–burning off brain cycles on rote learning, computer solitaire and baseball scores–and apathy of various kinds adding up to undue tolerance of incredible batshit unreason can often seem just as frustrating as that unreason…

    But people, in my experience, are also easily fascinated with reality, in all its complexity and beauty, too. Religion, in my mind, must actively work to suppress and subvert that to survive.

    I’ve often suspected this is part of why religious services are held weekly–or even more frequently–to steer the mind actively in the directions wanted, away from those not wanted, to keep that creed echoing through the neurons so they don’t get busy with something that might undermine it.

    As to why, I dunno. I wouldn’t call myself so much an optimist at all, but I’ve talked with a lot of segments of society, for various reasons, over the years–partly from some years as a reporter, partly from having been through a few career changes, partly from a few hobbies that seem to attract quite a cross-section, and I’m the garrulous type, in person–give me five minutes in an environment I’m not shouting to talk in, and I’ll talk. And in my admittedly limited experience, there’s an awful lot of people who seem to know squat about anything who want to know more about everything. I’ve talked to people about stellar evolution on chairlifts, and had them keep asking for more, not nodding off.

    In my less charitable moments, I sometimes think society actually does it, in a sense, deliberately: tries to keep some people dumb, for various reasons. They want to know, they want to learn, they like to flex those (relatively) big, H. sapiens brains, given half a chance… But there’s so much telling them: don’t. Get lazy. Knowing, understanding, thinking too deeply, too rigourously, this isn’t done… Advertising campaigns that lean on emotive, empty appeals and deliberately irrational associations between sex and whatever telling them that whatever you want to associate, for whichever reason, that’s all good…

    So, more briefly, I’d say: just because someone looks a little lazy, a little apathetic, don’t count them out yet. People like to think. Sometimes, tho’, they really only feel comfortable discovering how much they like doing so when they think certain influences–peers, priests, and family–aren’t looking.

    Then, of course, you have to get to the next phases: past curious through straightened out enough by where that curiosity leads to use their brain with some effectiveness, through to brave enough to express that aspect of themselves more publicly… But even getting to that second stage, I’d say it’s a good thing, in the long run… And they don’t even have to be brave enough to shout anything from the rooftops, either… So long as they’re not also actively teaching their children the bullshit they themselves used to believe, that, too, is one hell of a victory.

    I’m one of those who believes there will probably always be some degree of religiosity around much as a gardener expects there will always be weeds–and even if we were somehow to stamp out every old superstition tomorrow, there’d still be some annoying new ones next week–but I also do not hold to the notion there’s really anyone who absolutely cannot shake off the older dogmas, and start really thinking for themselves, if they are given a good enough reason to do so, and the space to do so. It is no contradiction–thinking in terms of, say, epidemiology.

    So, more to the point: there is so much that is possible just through speaking up, just through educating, just through getting that spark of curiosity started, however you do so.

  576. #582 Miki Z
    January 20, 2010

    aratina cage,

    I grew up in Fairbanks, went to junior high and high school there, and moved away shortly after I graduated from high school. I don’t drive, so I’d never move back there, but I have some good memories of it.

  577. #583 David Marjanovi?
    January 20, 2010

    like this, for example.

    Awesome!!!

    Waterspout over Tampa Bay.

    If that thing comes too close? :-S

    http://www.wildernessbooks.com/lee/lee/owhyee_river_lightning.html

    Almost three-dimensional.

    http://www.wildernessbooks.com/lee/lee/natures_glory.html

    Worthy of Terry Pratchett!

    I saw a triple rainbow once and double ones occasionally.

    There are a few animals shared between the two faunas. Birds for example, and bats (I think).

    Wallace actually worked on birds when he discovered the Wallace Line between Bali and Lombok. Of course, some bird species don’t care ? there are even globally distributed ones ?, but most do.

    Are you barred from upgrading the OS on your Mac?

    I’d have to buy it myself, which is ridiculous and way too expensive.

  578. #584 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 20, 2010

    If not then I recommend getting a copy of either Leopard or Snow Leopard.

    He can’t run Snow Leopard. That is for MacTels only.

    On the other hand, here are your own words: “[T]oo many people have an emotional investment in sasquatch being a lie. … You have become afraid to admit to error, you and many more besides.”

    Reminds me of when cold fusion was first announced. As a scientist and skeptic, I was willing to tentatively, but skeptically, accept the announcement at face value. But it set my BS meter off big time, so I thought about it, and decided that I would not fully accept it until the “smoking gun” experimental results were there. Namely, both excess heat and neutrons, with the neutron output being expected for the extra heat seen. The results were never there, confirming I was right to be skeptical.

    While catching up on my reading, Skeptical Inquirer Vol. 32, No. 6, had an article by Michael Dennett (pages 47-51), looking at the Patterson BF video, and the alleged footprint evidence from that scene. The timeline for the taking, printing, and first showing of the film is dubious, being almost physically impossible in that time. The footprint data was interesting, in that the alleged BF print was deeper than a hoofprint of a 1,200-1300 pound horse. Given the difference in foot area, this require poor BF to be horribly overweight at about 2,200 lbs. Hoax.

    Like with cold fusion, I require the “smoking gun” evidence for BF. For me, a body, or even a reasonably complete skeleton is required. Scat or hair with good DNA analysis, which Sven #577 pointed out is both expensive and time consuming, would bring the concept that BF probably exists back into play. The body would be easier and cheaper. So, the burden of proof is upon those making claims to sasquatch existing to provide the necessary level of evidence. MM, do you have the body? If not, until you do, shut the fuck up on BF.

    As an aside, the same issue of Skeptical Inquirer had a picture of our bearded overlord (page 9). Some asteroids were named, and PZ, Philip Plait, Michael Stackpole, and Rebecca Watson were honored.

  579. #585 aratina cage of the OM
    January 20, 2010

    Miki Z #581, I think growing up there qualifies you as an Alaskan. :) I never really got to stay long in Fairbanks over the summer and so I feel I have missed out on much of the grandeur of that city (like the midnight rainbows), but it is a hard place to go to and not take away some special memories. I was able to see the Northern Lights there several times in the dead of winter and one of those times I was mesmerized by what looked like a giant hand playing Liszt on the piano.

    And in #579 you mentioned a quote from a Ufologist:

    I know things. People laugh at me, but I know things, and I deserve a little respect for that.

    Coincidentally, the National Geographic special on Bigfoot that mythusmage linked to in #424 (I swear it looks like a parody from the preview) also had Jeffrey Meldrum (the Sasquatch specialist) saying nearly the same thing. It shows Meldrum holding up casts of “big feet” and stomping ludicrously fake footprints in freshly laid soil to “prove” that the hundreds of mismatched Squatch footprints he has documented and collected could not have been faked. It even shows a map of the USA with lighted dots representing all reported Bigfoot sightings and wouldn’t you know that the sightings correlate with bear populations. Unfortunately, National Geographic props up Meldrum vs. the rest of the scientific faculty at Idaho State as a continuing “debate” despite the fact that Meldrum is treated like a crackpot.

  580. #586 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 20, 2010

    *headdesk*
    Incomplete citation in #583. That was the Nov/Dec 2008 issue. Left out the year.

  581. #587 David Marjanovi?
    January 20, 2010

    I want to bite on something. Hard (so, not Jadehawk’s neck). First I hit the keyboard somehow, so a cascade of random acts were triggered, which included submitting the comment. Naturally, I tried to interrupt that, but, as always, it didn’t work.

    Then, while trying to see the page with the Hodge Conjecture, I pressed an extra key and made the bookmarks bar show up. I tried to get rid of it by? showing all bookmarks (under the silly assumption that this was turned on and had to be turned off). Did Safari show me all bookmarks (whatever that actually means)? No. It crashed. Now I have to write the entire rest of my comment from scratch. I’m supposed to work here!!!

    Fortunately it isn’t much anymore.

    The Dawkins passage used appears to be The “know-nothings”, the “know-alls”, and the “no-contests”, which appeared in The Nullifidian, December 1994 .

    Unfortunately, at the link you give, it’s very sloppily retyped.

    Imagine (if necessary) yourself a molecular biologist.

    :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D

    BLAST the resulting sequence.

    ?where BLAST means this.

    “The Basic Local Alignment Search Tool (BLAST) finds regions of local similarity between sequences. The program compares nucleotide or protein sequences to sequence databases [ = GenBank] and calculates the statistical significance of matches. BLAST can be used to infer functional and evolutionary relationships between sequences as well as help identify members of gene families.”

    The footprint data was interesting, in that the alleged BF print was deeper than a hoofprint of a 1,200-1300 pound horse.

    ?Ouch.

    I was able to see the Northern Lights there several times in the dead of winter and one of those times I was mesmerized by what looked like a giant hand playing Liszt on the piano.

    ~:-| How do you tell it was Liszt?

  582. #588 David Marjanovi?
    January 20, 2010

    Also, BLAST most assuredly is a blast. :-)

  583. #589 Miki Z
    January 20, 2010

    ~:-| How do you tell it was Liszt?

    The best way to view the northern lights is to lie outdoors in the snow. The lights may last for a few hours, and if you lie there until they’re over, you’ll probably realize you’re suddenly feeling Liszt-less.

    The lights are amazing, sometimes more than others. I remember in particular a night when they were a ribbon of purple and white light snapping audibly back and forth across the sky, bright enough to tint the snow purple.

  584. #590 Sven DiMilo
    January 20, 2010

    ~:-| How do you tell it was Liszt?

    arpeggio.

    Here’s Rubinstein, but you can’t see his hands much (@2:20):
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ejXPcv9MS7s

  585. #591 Lynna, OM
    January 20, 2010

    SEF @571

    If the large mass of mediocrity are generally held away from flocking with the religious nutters (both the dangerously insane and the criminally manipulative) and giving them protective cover, then those religious nutters can more properly be seen for the extremists and conmen that they are. So the big flock of sheeple will then be even more discouraged from hanging out with the rabid dogs and voracious wolves – despite the unlikelihood of the sheeple suddenly becoming sensible in their own right.

    This is an excellent point. You clarified some of my own thinking about people from whom one cannot expect reasonableness when it comes to religion. They’re likable perhaps, in other areas, intelligent in their chosen career, etc., but they also have very little perspective when it comes to the negative effects of religious nutters because they have a knee-jerk reaction to any discourse that puts religion in a negative light. Making it okay for the masses to look down on the nutters is one step in the right direction.

  586. #592 aratina cage of the OM
    January 20, 2010

    How do you tell it was Liszt?

    The “finger” movement was crazy fast, all over the place, yet graceful with intense emotion, like so: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tmq5JBpFf9w

    The best way to view the northern lights is to lie outdoors in the snow.

    Yes, I think I may have on Ester Dome for that show.

  587. #593 Sven DiMilo
    January 20, 2010

    This is cool: experimental evidence for the evolution of “3-bears” DNA polymerase: both too much and too little error (mutation) is disadvantageous.

  588. #594 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    January 20, 2010

    Cool, but not rare at all. Problem is that to see them, you have to be looking right at the sun.

    Are you saying I was staring at the sun?
    It wouldn’t be the first time. . .

  589. #595 Lynna, OM
    January 20, 2010

    Prop. 8 puts Paramount board member on hold is the title of an article in the San Francisco Chronicle. Oh, look, mormons are being persecuted for called to account for their support of Prop 8 … again.

    A $26,000 contribution to the initiative that banned same-sex marriage in California appears to have cost a 96-year-old former Mormon temple president his seat on the board that oversees Oakland’s historic Paramount Theatre.
         Amid rising criticism from the gay community, Mayor Ron Dellums said Tuesday that he was putting on hold the reappointment of Lorenzo Hoopes, most likely signaling an end to Hoopes’ 30-plus years on the Paramount board.
         ”The community is asking us to reconsider, and that is what we are going to do,” mayoral spokesman Paul Rose said.
         Hoopes, a past president of the Mormon temple in Oakland as well as a former Safeway executive, has been on the Paramount board since before the downtown theater was restored in the early 1970s….
         Mormon church members contributed an estimated $20 million to the Proposition 8 campaign. Hoopes, who supports civil unions for gays but not marriage, said his support for the 2008 initiative – and the contribution he made – was a personal matter.

  590. #596 'Tis Himself, OM
    January 20, 2010

    Mendelssohn’s 4th Symphony (The Italian), 1st Movement:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TIITKVYrHvQ&NR=1

  591. #597 Blind Squirrel FCD
    January 20, 2010
    Third and forth order rainbow. Very rare.

    Cool, but not rare at all. Problem is that to see them, you have to be looking right at the sun.

    Correct. I should have been more precise with my wording. Speaking of looking at the sun, I have on 2 separate occasions, seen naked eye sunspots.

    BS

  592. #598 Lynna, OM
    January 20, 2010

    On page 1003 of Stephen King’s new novel “Under the Dome” the adjective “mormonesque” is used: “Another family!” Charlie Gibson said in a voice of approval that was almost Mormonesque.”

    The strange droning, restricted sing-song of mormon worthies during General Conference speeches has been remarked upon before. I don’t know why the regular members don’t notice. They do seem to soak it up though, because some them adopt the style unconsciously and they slip right into it when discussing religious matters.

    One oddity that shows up more in past speeches than in present ones is the tendency of mormon worthies to smack their lips into the microphone. Don’t know what that’s all about, but it’s irritating, mormonesque even.

  593. #599 SEF
    January 20, 2010

    I have on 2 separate occasions, seen naked eye sunspots.

    And now you go by the soubriquet “Blind Squirrel”.

  594. #600 Lynna, OM
    January 20, 2010

    @584

    Unfortunately, National Geographic props up Meldrum vs. the rest of the scientific faculty at Idaho State as a continuing “debate” despite the fact that Meldrum is treated like a crackpot.

    Meldrum graduated from BYU, of course, where he learned enough to do some good work on bipedal locomotion, and also how to veer wildly from the facts.

    From wiki: Meldrum received his B.S. in zoology specializing in vertebrate locomotion at Brigham Young University (BYU) in 1982, his M.S. at BYU in 1984 and a Ph.D. in anatomical sciences, with an emphasis in biological anthropology, from State University of New York at Stony Brook…

    From ex-mormon, Bob McCue:

    Meldrum is an LDS scientist at Idaho State who has published a number of articles and at least one book related to science and Mormonism. He weighs in on the ?you?ll never refute the Book of Mormon using DNA evidence? side of the DNA argument (see http://maxwellinstitute.byu.edu/pdf.php?filename=Mjk3NjA2NTc1LTEyLTEucGRm&type=amJtcw )… offering a silly mixture of scripture, J. Smith?s meandering ideas, magical thinking and unparsimonious science, …
         Hmmm. Might the same be said about the proposition that the Earth is very old? Indeed, there are many people with PhD?s in geology, mostly on staff at Biblical literalist educational institutions (using that term a bit loosely) who argue that the case has not been definitively made that the Earth is much more than 6,000 years old. ?You can?t prove it!? is their battle cry….      Says Meldrum, ?I’m not out to proselytize that Bigfoot exists. I place legend under scrutiny and my conclusion is, absolutely. Bigfoot exists.”
         Does anyone see a pattern yet?
         See http://www.isu.edu/~meldd/fxnlmorph.html for a sample of Meldrum?s Big Foot work, and http://www.dailytidings.com/2006/1106/stories/1106_bigfoot.php [to see] how his professional peers view his research. The typical comment runs as follows:
         ?? many scientists are embarrassed by what they call Meldrum’s “pseudo-academic” pursuits and have called on the university to review his work with an eye toward revoking his tenure. One physics professor, D.P. Wells, wonders whether Meldrum plans to research Santa Claus, too.?
         Another of Meldrum?s colleague?s puts his finger of the problem?s root, as follows:
         ?A scientist should not be a believer, said Martin Hackworth, a senior lecturer in the physics department at Idaho State University.?

  595. #601 Blind Squirrel FCD
    January 20, 2010

    SEF: I didn’t even make the connection when I posted! Actually,the reason naked eye sunspots are rarely observed is because a cirrostratus haze of the correct density must be present to make it safe.
    The first time I noticed the phenomena was in high school. I went down the street pulling people out of cafes and making them look. “Do you realize what this would have meant to the trial of Galileo if this had occurred previous to his trial?”
    No they didn’t and they returned, unimpressed, to their coffee. This was the first time I realized that I was “not like the others.”
    Sven: as long as we are pulling techs on one another the third and forth order rainbows occur at 45.5 degrees from the sun and do not require looking directly at it. It helps to mask the sun with a building, watertower etc.

    BS

  596. #602 Lynna, OM
    January 20, 2010

    The LDS Crutch just bought a few more acres of downtown Salt Lake City.

    Calling it an investment opportunity, the LDS Church has bought a 3.76-acre lot on the northeast corner of 400 West and North Temple in Salt Lake City….
    “The land was purchased as a long-term investment with no immediate plans for development,” LDS Church spokesman Scott Trotter said Tuesday.
    The move follows the church’s recent purchase of 13 downtown acres, including a block between 400 South and 500 South and West Temple and Main streets from Sinclair Cos., controlled by oil magnate Earl Holding. Church officials said that acquisition, estimated around $25 million, also is a long-term investment.

    There are also plans for a new “North Temple viaduct” which the city has planned, but not yet constructed. The viaduct is part of an engineering project that would culminate in a TRAX train from Salt Lake City to the International airport. That might help revitalize the downtown, but I think it’s also a plan to make it easier for mormons to fly into the airport and then take a train to Temple Square, the Conference Center etc. If the LDS Crutch would stop buying up the downtown, I would be all for better public transport for visitors, for transport to downtown hotels, fewer cars, etc. (Salt Lake City already has one of the worst smog problems in the USA, and that problem is getting worse every year.) Source is at http://www.sltrib.com/faith/ci_14224477

  597. #603 David Marjanovi?
    January 20, 2010

    and if you lie there until they’re over, you’ll probably realize you’re suddenly feeling Liszt-less.

    :-D :-D :-D

    I’ll watch the videos later.

  598. #604 Lynna, OM
    January 20, 2010

    Jadehawk, in my rabid and frantic concern over consuming oranges, I forgot to tell you that I liked your wordle. (See Jadehawks comment and link at
    http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2010/01/pharynguloids_from_the_deep_en.php#comment-2209618

  599. #605 Alan B
    January 20, 2010

    #574 SEF

    Pretty geology – but only allowed to remain that way because of its lack of mineral value!

    I can see your point but according to Prof. Ian Stewart who did a film there for the BBC:

    They do not earn any money (from the cave), and sooner or later, when the financial situation of the mines change, will be closed. The water pumps will be removed and the cave will be flooded, and the crystals, again, will be out of our reach.

    http://www.treehugger.com/files/2010/01/geologists-explore-giant-crystals-in-fated-cave.php

    Part 1 of a 5 part series on the crystal caves (others accessible from youtube):

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xpf51UH456U

  600. #606 Owlmirror
    January 20, 2010

    Did Safari show me all bookmarks (whatever that actually means)? No. It crashed.

    Given how many times you’ve mentioned that Safari crashes– have you tried uninstalling and reinstalling it?

    Have you tried installing Firefox and/or Opera and seeing if it’s more stable?

    Have you fscked your filesystems? (Note for dirty-minded non-geeks: This does not mean something dirty.)

    Do other applications crash on this machine?

  601. #607 Jadehawk, OM
    January 20, 2010

    I want to bite on something. Hard (so, not Jadehawk’s neck).

    tease

    Jadehawk, in my rabid and frantic concern over consuming oranges, I forgot to tell you that I liked your wordle.

    :-)

    and since this thread is slowly nearing its end as well (though who knows if PZ will have time to restart it anytime soon), I made another one, and I think this one is truly worthy of Pharyngula :-)

  602. #608 Jadehawk, OM
    January 20, 2010

    and in other news, it’s supposed to snow on Friday. Yay!

  603. #609 Sven DiMilo
    January 20, 2010

    the third and forth order rainbows occur at 45.5 degrees from the sun and do not require looking directly at it.

    Right you are (about the 3rd order ‘bow). Of course I was not recommending looking directly at the sun; that’s counterindicated for anybody who enjoys vision. In any case, what you meant in the first place was “rarely seen,” which is certainly true, and that’s why.

  604. #610 SC OM
    January 20, 2010

    I want to bite on something. Hard (so, not Jadehawk’s neck).

    tease

    Jadehawk, in my rabid and frantic concern over consuming oranges, I forgot to tell you that I liked your wordle.

    too…much…adorableness…

    …I made another one, and I think this one is truly worthy of Pharyngula :-)

    Indeed! (And “hard Squirrel Now“? Beauty.)

  605. #611 'Tis Himself, OM
    January 20, 2010

    Have you fscked your filesystems? (Note for dirty-minded non-geeks: This does not mean something dirty.)

    Yeah, that’s what you geeks want us to believe.

  606. #612 Jadehawk, OM
    January 20, 2010

    Hitler Finds Out Scott Brown Won Massachusetts Senate Seat (since we’re abusing that meme anyway)

  607. #613 SC OM
    January 20, 2010

    This is still my favorite by a mile:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-VRBWLpYCPY

  608. #614 eddie
    January 20, 2010

    In BBC2 now;

    Horizon: Pill Poppers.
    Brilliant coverage of both the benefits of science based medicine and the evils of big pharma.

    Check it on the iPlayer.

  609. #615 eddie
    January 20, 2010

    As a f’rinstance: Why do you get combinations of paracetamol and codeine? Sure paracetamol is a useful drug that is effective as a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory pain releiver. The amount of codeine in them is not enough to help pain relief, but enough to make you addicted to codeine.

  610. #616 Owlmirror
    January 20, 2010
    I want to bite on something. Hard (so, not Jadehawk’s neck).

    tease

    [...]

    too…much…adorableness…

    …I made another one, and I think this one is truly worthy of Pharyngula :-)

    Indeed! (And “hard Squirrel Now“? Beauty.)

    Note, in particular, the proximity of “Jadehawk” to “Marjanovi?” in the wordle.

    Further deponent sayeth not.

  611. #617 SC OM
    January 20, 2010

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QeahROQ716M

    The other side was made for you and me.

  612. #618 SEF
    January 20, 2010

    @ eddie #615:

    The amount of codeine in them is not enough to help pain relief

    Ah but the real trick there is that they put in more of the drug which genuinely does have a worthwhile effect – eg aspirin. So, whereas a standard aspirin would be 300mg, the aspirin in a standard aspirin-codeine mixed pill is 400mg. For average people taking 2 pills that’s 600mg straight aspirin vs 800mg contaminated aspirin. So it’s no wonder the victim/patient notices some genuine improvement – which they can be misled into attributing to the codeine rather than the aspirin.

    However, very few people are smart enough to read the label (despite the fact that regulations do now at least force manufacturers to own up more and more to what they’ve actually put into stuff) and work out the trick that’s being played on them. Otherwise more of them would figure out that the correct thing to do instead is to take the maximum safe dose of straight aspirin, viz 3 x 300mg, and have a slightly higher dose again (900mg) while avoiding the codeine trap altogether.

    You’re also allowed more aspirin overall in a day too. 4g aspirin is greater than the total from 4 doses of 3 aspirin (3.6g) which in turn is greater than 4 lots of 2 codeine-contaminated pills (3.2g).

  613. #619 eddie
    January 20, 2010

    Very Spanish

    I was looking by the version of Spanish Fly by Avant Jazz guys Cavemen but can’t find a no-pay version :-(

  614. #620 David Marjanovi?
    January 20, 2010

    Given how many times you’ve mentioned that Safari crashes– have you tried uninstalling and reinstalling it?

    Reinstalling from where? Only version 4 can be downloaded.

    Have you tried installing Firefox and/or Opera and seeing if it’s more stable?

    I tried Firefox. Then I tried to upgrade it to 3.5. It doesn’t open anymore.

    Have you fscked your filesystems? (Note for dirty-minded non-geeks: This does not mean something dirty.)

    …Then… what does it mean?

    (See also comment 611.)

    Do other applications crash on this machine?

    Rarely. And Safari crashes on those websites where it’s plausible that 2005 technology can’t deal with them, those with extra bells & whistles.

    Usually, when I need to open something and can’t get it to work in Safari, I now use Netscape 7.2, but that, too, can’t deal with some things. Netscape has apparently been succeded by Flock, which presumably requires an Intel processor.

    I made another one, and I think this one is truly worthy of Pharyngula :-)

    HA! Smack dab in the middle, in the biggest font, front & center, “evidence”. It is a science blog after all. =8-)

    too…much…adorableness…

    One detail isn’t adorable, though ? look how far the Redhead is separated from her nerd! :-(

    Note, in particular, the proximity of

    …”David” to “Bigfoot”. Hm.

    On the other hand, I’m next to “take time”. That fits.

    And while we’re at words, here’s something interesting from the ResearchBlogging widget:

    “I got the word daft published in the British Medical Journal”

    Congratulations.

  615. #621 Blind Squirrel FCD
    January 20, 2010

    SEF: You never specifically stated otherwise, but the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory pain reliever discussed in #615 is know as acetaminophen in the USA. The nasty stuff that takes out your liver when one tries to get high on codeine containing pills. This happens a lot.
    BTW,In the USA, 100mg ibuprofen is available over the counter. 800mg tablets are prescription only, and a person is liable to be arested and charged for the poession thereof.

    BS

  616. #622 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    January 20, 2010
  617. #623 SEF
    January 20, 2010

    the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory pain reliever discussed in #615 is know as acetaminophen in the USA.

    In the UK, the common paracetamol codeine combination would be “co-codamol”.

    The nasty stuff that takes out your liver when one tries to get high on codeine containing pills.

    That would be the paracetamol. Nasty and almost useless stuff compared with aspirin. Yet, for the past couple(?) of decades they’ve been trying to push it as the safer option when in fact, not only does it barely have any worthwhile effect at all (compared to aspirin’s 3 pronged efficacy) but it’s actually more dangerous in overdose than aspirin is! It only functions as fractionally better than a complete placebo for people who can’t tolerate aspirin. It’s a stupid “choice” for anyone who can tolerate aspirin.

  618. #624 David Marjanovi?
    January 20, 2010

    Here’s Rubinstein, but you can’t see his hands much

    Heh! LOL! It stopped playing at 2:25 because it can’t keep up loading, and the fingers of the left hand are in several places at once in that single frame! :-D

    The “finger” movement was crazy fast, all over the place, yet graceful with intense emotion, like so:

    Speechless.

    It’s like working on Supersaurus and Sauroposeidon and suddenly seeing Amphicoelias fragillimus walk by.

  619. #625 AJ Milne
    January 20, 2010

    Walking Spanish Down The Tall

    See… I was assuming this was some sort of cracked cover version… Possibly ‘Walking Spanish’ as performed by some guy on stilts… But noooooo….

    Not that having the master hisself do the thing is in any way unsatisfactory, natch… The problem here is typos, an overactive imagination, and the general observation that Waits has to be one of the most covered artists anywhere on the planet.

    (/And if there isn’t actually a ‘Walking Spanish Down the Tall’ version out there somewhere, well, there should be.)

  620. #626 Rorschach
    January 20, 2010

    A quick one, gtgt work.

    but it’s actually more dangerous in overdose than aspirin is!

    I don’t know about that.At least Paracetamol O/D I can fix with an antidote, Aspirine not so much.

    And btw, Paracetamol has no anti-inflammatory effects whatsoever.

  621. #627 mythusmage
    January 20, 2010

    Good-bye

  622. #628 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 20, 2010

    Ta-ta.

  623. #629 SC OM
    January 20, 2010

    Good-bye

    What?! No! Argue! Now!

    Look, don’t joke. You’re a fixture here. Come on. Don’t be silly.

  624. #630 SC OM
    January 20, 2010

    mythusmage, you there? Please answer.

  625. #631 John Morales
    January 20, 2010

    Spanish music? Concierto de Aranjuez

    Loved it since I was a kid.

  626. #632 SEF
    January 20, 2010

    At least Paracetamol O/D I can fix with an antidote

    Not if it’s too late and the liver damage effect has already been set in motion.

  627. #633 SC OM
    January 20, 2010

    Alan,

    Post anything. Please.

  628. #634 John Morales
    January 20, 2010

    It would seem MythusMage has transitioned from the manic to the depressive phase.

  629. #635 Blind Squirrel FCD
    January 20, 2010

    Damn! I’ve been confusing the terms anti-inflammatory and Antipyretic. Thanks Rorschach.

    BS

  630. #636 SEF
    January 20, 2010

    You’re a fixture here.

    Are you trying to sell the thread, all fixtures and fittings included, before we move on to a new home?

  631. #637 Owlmirror
    January 20, 2010
    Given how many times you’ve mentioned that Safari crashes– have you tried uninstalling and reinstalling it?

    Reinstalling from where?

    Apple doesn’t provide reinstallation media with their machines?

    Srsly?

    I tried Firefox. Then I tried to upgrade it to 3.5. It doesn’t open anymore.

    Sigh.

    OK, can you uninstall and reinstall that?

    Have you fscked your filesystems? (Note for dirty-minded non-geeks: This does not mean something dirty.)

    …Then… what does it mean?

    FileSystem ChecK. Corrupt filesystem => programs failing.

    Hm. Does the machine need to have MacOS on it? I suppose you wouldn’t be comfortable installing a Linux distro on it….

    Note, in particular, the proximity of

    …”David” to “Bigfoot”. Hm

    Hur, hur, hur.

  632. #638 John Morales
    January 20, 2010

    SC, that you seem genuinely concerned makes me concerned too. :|

  633. #639 SC OM
    January 20, 2010

    Hey, mythusmage, defend Bigfoot. I dare you.

    Look, you’re a part of this blog. Don’t go anywhere.

  634. #640 Carlie
    January 20, 2010

    I like how Jadehawk’s first Wordle had “Oh done old” in the middle of the O of OM.

  635. #641 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    January 20, 2010

    AJ Milne, as always, we have the scapechimp. Why does he insist on passing on his typo cooties? And you are right, the new title is quite evocative.

  636. #642 SC OM
    January 20, 2010

    Alan, what’s going on?

    What do you want to talk about?

    Post something.

  637. #643 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    January 20, 2010

    SC, you know there is always new people to tangle with.

  638. #644 Jadehawk, OM
    January 20, 2010

    SC, you know there is always new people to tangle with.

    usually I agree, but in hte case of people with known mental problems, such sudden, visible yet not explained departures are usually not a good sign :-/

  639. #645 SC OM
    January 20, 2010

    Good-bye

    Come on! Hello? Is it me you’re looking for? :P

  640. #646 SC OM
    January 20, 2010

    mythusmage,

    What’s going on?

    Just post anything, amd I’ll be the happiest girl in the world. Please, please, please.

  641. #647 Walton
    January 20, 2010

    I agree with SC and Jadehawk. Alan, please come back, and don’t do anything foolish.

  642. #648 SC OM
    January 20, 2010

    mythusmage,

    I completely understand if you just want to go to another site. Please just let us know that that’s what you mean by Good-bye.

  643. #649 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    January 20, 2010
    Good-bye

    Come on! Hello? Is it me you’re looking for? :P

    You should know by now this is what I would do.

  644. #650 SC OM
    January 20, 2010

    Alan, everyone here understands. Let’s talk and argue. Even if you’re not up to that, just a letter, or a symbol, or anythig to let me know you’re still there.

  645. #651 SC OM
    January 20, 2010

    Alan?

    Don’t be a tease. :)

  646. #652 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    January 20, 2010

    What’s going on?

    Just post anything, amd I’ll be the happiest girl in the world. Please, please, please.

    It is like she is setting this up for me.

  647. #653 SC OM
    January 20, 2010

    Janine,

    Are you fucking crazy? This isn’t a joke.

  648. #654 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 20, 2010

    SC – you’re fine.

  649. #655 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    January 20, 2010

    I am sorry. I have been ignoring Mythusmage.

  650. #656 SC OM
    January 20, 2010

    SC – you’re fine.

    And mythusmage?

  651. #657 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 20, 2010

    I see SC is worried Alan K (MM) might do something drastic to himself. I simply thought he was being melodramatic, irritated because we weren’t agreeing with him about sasquatch, and not letting him dictate the topics.

  652. #658 John Morales
    January 20, 2010

    I would hope Alan is AFK, rather than just being cruel to SC (who very clearly is exceedingly concerned) or something worse.

  653. #659 SC OM
    January 20, 2010

    Alan, please, just let us know you’re OK. I know I’m melodramatic, so feel free to make fun of me.

  654. #660 'Tis Himself, OM
    January 20, 2010

    Alan, come out come out wherever you are.

  655. #661 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 20, 2010

    And mythusmage?

    I don’t know how he is.

    But you are fine, that’s my way of giving you a cyber hug, and support.

    In the mean time I’m gonna go share a Walnetto with Janine.

  656. #662 Sven DiMilo
    January 20, 2010

    SC: oh, I enjoyed that one. Woody Guthrie ala soul!

    I have no idea why it reminded me of this one, but whatever; I’ve loved it for years:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AdsuEsy-qrg

  657. #663 Sven DiMilo
    January 20, 2010

    Right, so, incidentally, 18700

  658. #664 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    January 20, 2010

    Good-bye

    But you’ve, generaly, been welcomed here
    Hugs. :)

    Alan, please, just let us know you’re OK. I know I’m melodramatic, so feel free to make fun of me.

    Hugs. :)

    I lost my lab manual in the rain today. I blame Jadehawk and AJ Milne. *Pokes

  659. #665 aratina cage of the OM
    January 20, 2010

    Fuck. After a quick google search, I’m really worried about mythusmage now too. Is someone in San Diego who can check on him?

  660. #666 Lynna, OM
    January 20, 2010

    mythusmage, I know nothing about Aspergers, and online I just usually don’t deal because I don’t how to deal. This might have come off as ignoring you, but that’s not the case. I read your posts.

    If you’d like to educate me about Aspergers syndrome (sp?), please feel free.

    This has been described as “an explosive day” in the Prop. 8 trial in California. Here’s an excerpt from some of the coverage:

    The transcripts from this afternoon read like an episode of Law and Order, with the attorneys arguing with the judge over what documents ought to be introduced as evidence. These aren?t just any old documents, they are emails and letters sent back and forth between the Prop 8 campaign and Catholic, LDS, and Evangelical churches.
         For example, one letter indicated that the LDS church had identified a volunteer for the campaign in every single zip code. This was a church document that was in the hands of a Prop 8 campaign official, and thus was discoverable. Andy Pugno, the general council for ProtectMarriage.com tried his darnedest to get Judge Walker to exclude it, but failed. From Rick?s liveblog:
    Pugno: Objects because document will be revealing.
    Judge: Not to make light of this, but the reason people want to produce documents is that they are revealing.
    Boutrous: It?s from an outsider to the core group. We are attempting to show the level of coordination with groups that Protect Marriage says were not even affiliated with the campaign.
         This is perhaps the most explosive bit of all, from a document between the LDS Church and the campaign:
    “With respect to Prop. 8 campaign, key talking points will come from campaign, but cautious, strategic, not to take the lead so as to provide plausible deniability or respectable distance so as not to show that church is directly involved.”

  661. #667 John Morales
    January 21, 2010

    Alan, as you can see, (at least some) regulars care and are worried about you.

    Please post anything so as to reassure us, and be assured that I (and others) will come down like a ton of bricks on anyone who disses you for it. Seriously.

  662. #668 Lynna, OM
    January 21, 2010

    For those who may want to follow the Prop 8 trial going on now in California, here are some links:

    The Courage Campaign provides transcript-like coverage interspersed with commentary since Day 1 (with 2-3 liveblogging entries per day) of the trial here: http://prop8trialtracker.com/ Note the logo which is a parody of the Yes on 8 campaign and which sparked its own kerfuffle last week.

    For details of the logo fight, see -http://prop8trialtracker.com/2010/01/15/irony-defined/ This blog also includes quite a few commentary/discussion posts in addition to the liveblogging posts.

    Firedoglake is covering the trial live: http://firedoglake.com/prop8trial/

    The San Jose Mercury News has a reporter providing live coverage http://www.mercurynews.com/samesexmarriage

    The Los Angeles Times has daily reports here: http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/prop_8/

  663. #669 Miki Z
    January 21, 2010

    Lynna,

    This type of thing is not so surprising anymore, but it is highly hypocritical. Given that the LDS church doesn’t regard non-temple marriages as being anything other than a temporal partnership, what is their investment in traditional marriage? I remember being taught as a very young child that polygamy was God’s style of marriage, and that when we were ‘spiritually ready’, God would make it legal again. This was in the “mainstream” LDS, not FLDS, RLDS, or any other *LDS sect. If marriage equality will lead to polygamy, aren’t they fighting God’s will?

  664. #670 Patricia, Queen of Sluts OM
    January 21, 2010

    Alan – The offers of support here are serious. They have been helping me through the death of my husband, and they will help you too.

    Sorry, gawd won’t, but we will.

  665. #671 A. Noyd
    January 21, 2010

    @ mythusmage

    I know I’ve been riding you for being irrational, but only because I sincerely want you to be more rational. (I wouldn’t bother if I didn’t think you were up to it.) But before that, I want you to be alive and well. Can you let people know you’re at least alive?

  666. #672 A. Noyd
    January 21, 2010

    Lynna (#666)

    “Judge: Not to make light of this, but the reason people want to produce documents is that they are revealing.”

    Can’t you just imagine the judge fantasizing about taking his gavel to someone’s head?

    ~*~*~*~*~*~

    MikiZ (#668)

    what is their investment in traditional marriage?

    Marketing. It’s easier to sell people outside the church on “protecting traditions” rather than “using religion as an excuse to deprive fellow human beings of their equal rights.”

  667. #673 Emmet, OM
    January 21, 2010

    Have you fscked your filesystems? (Note for dirty-minded non-geeks: This does not mean something dirty.)

    I fsck my filesystems all the time; but, of course, with filesystems the size of mine, it takes a while. Thankfully, I can fsck a couple of them at the same time. The only thing I find annoying is them demanding to be fscked when I want to do something else.

  668. #674 monado
    January 21, 2010

    My favourite Bigfoot hoax was of the hairy figure trotting away, followed by “experts” wisely opining that this couldn’t be a human because it didn’t have the proportions of a man. Some years later, the fellow with the convenient film camera revealed that the person in the ape suit was his wife. Sexist assumptions will bite you on the ass when you least expect it.

  669. #675 windy
    January 21, 2010

    I’m not entirely clued in to the discussion about/with AK/MM but for the concerned, a more recent sighting here.

  670. #676 Jadehawk, OM
    January 21, 2010

    thanks windy; i guess that indicates that he’s just sick of us, but otherwise fine. I can live with that :-)

  671. #677 John Morales
    January 21, 2010

    Good pickup, Windy. It assuages my guilt-free worry. :)

    On another note, Leigh still has not responded to me regarding whether she’s honest on the occasions when she asserts her belief by reciting the Apostles’ Creed.

  672. #678 SC OM
    January 21, 2010

    windy – Thank You!

    Alan Kellogg now owes me one good night’s sleep and the enjoyment of one set of trig puns.

  673. #679 SC OM
    January 21, 2010

    And apologies to Janine and Patricia. I can get worked up into a frenzy of worry. It may be genetic.
    :)

  674. #680 John Morales
    January 21, 2010

    SC, it may be genetic, but it’s also contagious!

  675. #681 Jadehawk, OM
    January 21, 2010

    it snowed! only a wee tiny bit, and by tomorrow morning stoopid people will ruin it by driving cars over it, but it looks soooooooooooooo pretty right now!

    hopefully Friday will bring enough snow that people doing people stuff won’t be able to ruin it.

  676. #682 Rorschach
    January 21, 2010

    Bit of paranoia going on here, I see….
    Unfounded, methinks.

    SEF @ 632,

    Not if it’s too late and the liver damage effect has already been set in motion.

    No that’s not correct, even then it is still protective of hepatocytes.It is not like some unstoppable avalanche of damage once a tipping point is reached.

    Have you fscked your filesystems?

    Unless it asks you too, a unix-based system shouldnt have to be fscked, this stuff runs in the background without you ever noticing.
    Only ever happens to me on Unix I run on USB sticks, somehow after a while the inodes break, and all fscking in the world won’t fix it anymore.

    I want to bite on something. Hard (so, not Jadehawk’s neck).

    tease

    Get a room already, you too !!
    :-)

  677. #683 John Morales
    January 21, 2010

    Get a room already, you [two]!!

    Aww, won’t you think of the voyeurs? ;)

    Bit of paranoia going on here, I see….
    Unfounded, methinks.

    No harm done, though.

  678. #684 Rorschach
    January 21, 2010

    /note to self

    too and two mean different things

    /end note to self

  679. #685 SEF
    January 21, 2010

    It is not like some unstoppable avalanche of damage once a tipping point is reached.

    It is when the tipping point includes the amount of alcohol (or other susceptibility factor) and passage of time before anyone even considers doing anything! In the UK, what had tended to happen (it may perhaps not be so true any more) is that people overdosed, didn’t die immediately, were thought to be OK (being largely asymptomatic initially) and then died of the liver failure just a little later.

  680. #686 Rorschach
    January 21, 2010

    I have been treating those overdoses for more then 10 years and in all this time had to send 3 or 4 patients to the transplant unit.Once you come to Hospital, and especially within 12 hours, you are probably going to be ok.

    The issue here is that a potentially fatal drug is consumed by the general population like lollies, and anyone can acquire large amounts of the stuff in their local supermarket.

    It is not a nice way to die, by the way, not at all.

  681. #687 Rorschach
    January 21, 2010

    Here, have some culture folks….:-)

    Stan Live

    Mockingbird

  682. #688 SEF
    January 21, 2010

    There’s a dearth of nice deaths.

  683. #689 MrFire
    January 21, 2010

    Totally unrelated to anything anyone is saying:

    Robin Williams on Whose Line Is It Anyway?

  684. #690 AJ Milne
    January 21, 2010

    The issue here is that a potentially fatal drug is consumed by the general population like lollies, and anyone can acquire large amounts of the stuff in their local supermarket…

    Yeah, y’know… And I’ll tell you, honestly, reading this thread is making me mildly nervous.

    I mean, I use a fair bit of paracetamol/acetaminophen, myself, on and off. Headaches (weird schedule, lot of time in front of screens, so do I get a fair number of these), muscle pulls, colds, flus, yadda yadda… Thinking I’d rarely exceed 2000 mg per day–might get to 3000 if I’ve really banged something up bad, or at the peak of a bad cold… And I do have a beer or two frequently enough that now and again my liver probably does take a pretty heavy load–between that and the analgesic…

    I get that ASA also does the anti-inflammatory thing all by itself, but I do have occasional stomach issues (I have a prescribed proton pump inhibitor in the medicine cabinet, for when a too-spicy relleno starts getting revenge and irritating the bottom end of my esophagus), too… And odds are, if I’ve torn something up bad enough to need anti-inflammatories, the docs will put me on a dedicated one in a second anyway (on one now, actually, for a bruised rib)…

    So now y’all are making me wonder about the acetaminophen by default thing again… Dunno… Thinking mebbe it should be ASA, anyway, after all, if I find it’s not causing me to digest myself.

    (/Heads off to read dosage recommendations/toxicity stuff more closely, again…)

  685. #691 SEF
    January 21, 2010

    Part of the problem with paracetamol is all the stealth paracetamol included with other products (along with stealth alcohol!). People can easily take some paracetamol alongside what they think is some magical cold remedy, without noticing that the cold remedy is itself laced with paracetamol. It’s rather similar to the problem of all the stealth salt in processed foods.

  686. #692 AJ Milne
    January 21, 2010

    Part of the problem with paracetamol is all the stealth paracetamol included with other products (along with stealth alcohol!). People can easily take some paracetamol alongside what they think is some magical cold remedy, without noticing that the cold remedy is itself laced with paracetamol.

    Yeah, I’ve noticed the cold remedy thing. Also muscle relaxants for back pain–tho’ there, at least, the common product here (Canada) tends to be available in a mix either with the paracetamol or ASA, take your pick… I guess given the use, people would be looking more for the ASA anti-inflammatory thing…

    Also, in both cases, typically ‘extra strength’ for over the counter stuff generally seems to mean 500 mg vs. 325 of the paracetamol, not the decongestant/antihistamine/muscle relaxant/what-have-you.

  687. #693 AJ Milne
    January 21, 2010

    Clarifying, re ‘not the decongestant/antihistamine/muscle relaxant/what-have-you’… The point being: the dose per unit will be the same for these, between extra and regular strength–it’s just the analgesic (usually paracetamol) dose that’s different.

    (/And in many cases, of course, consume either 325 or 500 mg of the other ingredient would be rather unwise.)

  688. #694 David Marjanovi?
    January 21, 2010

    Finding a photo of me just got a whole lot easier. (But don’t immediately start scrolling. Read the whole thing, comments included. It’s also fine to get lost in the links for a while. :-) )

    Also, I talked about the air in sauropod vertebrae. There are currently several posts about this on the front page of this blog.

    Apple doesn’t provide reinstallation media with their machines?

    I think it does. I’ll have to ask where the CD might be.

    Sigh.

    It’s actually worse: it’s 3.0, not 3.5, that I tried to upgrade to.

    OK, can you uninstall and reinstall that?

    I just deleted it (no uninstalling procedure seems to exist). But the only Firefox version I can find on mozilla.org is 3.5, which requires OS 10.4 or higher.

    Corrupt filesystem => programs failing.

    That isn’t the case. Only Safari fails, and that only when I try to access too advanced websites.

    Hm. Does the machine need to have MacOS on it? I suppose you wouldn’t be comfortable installing a Linux distro on it….

    I wouldn’t, because there are programs here that wouldn’t run on anything but MacOS. And is it even possible to run Linux on a G5?

    Hur, hur, hur.

    I noticed it myself and wanted to write something adorable about it before I saw you had covered it already. (Probably better that way. :-) ) So, all I got to do was making a lame joke. :-)

    mythusmage, I know nothing about Aspergers, and online I just usually don’t deal because I don’t how to deal.

    I don’t think leaving in disgust is connected to Asperger’s. Asperger’s is more like SIWOTI syndrome.

    However, where do we take our impression that disgust is involved from? Maybe no emotion whatsoever was intended. That’s something Asperger’s makes one capable of.

    it snowed! only a wee tiny bit, and by tomorrow morning stoopid people will ruin it by driving cars over it, but it looks soooooooooooooo pretty right now!

    hopefully Friday will bring enough snow that people doing people stuff won’t be able to ruin it.

    As I told you, people: she’s not merely taking words out of my mouth, she’s pirating entire thought processes right out of my brain and then setting them into words (which I probably wouldn’t even have done in the first place). Now let’s just hope she doesn’t start mass-producing them in Shenzhen.

    Autumn, uh, fall weather here, with a thick cloud cover, except that the sun comes through and briefly interrupts the darkness every afternoon.

  689. #695 Lynna, OM
    January 21, 2010

    Looking fine in that photo, David M.! BTW, I always pictured you in my mind as having fiery eyes. Nice to see I was right, though the red is slighting less saturated than I imagined. This makes you look like a thoughtful devil, a satan with a polite listening stance. :-)

    Thanks for giving up on your whole hermit thing.

  690. #696 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    January 21, 2010

    Another plea for someone in Europe (or anywhere, Europe is easier for shipping), who has a copy of the Leopard install disk that they are no longer using, to send it to David Marjanovi?.

    David, if there is no response, I will see about backing up my firewire boot recovery volume, which is still Leopard (always one version behind the internal boot volume), and sending you my copy. IIRC, Safari 1 was so bad, I used Netscape or IE instead. Safari has gotten better.

  691. #697 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    January 21, 2010

    SC, just heard about this book, Mythmakers and Lawbreakers: Anarchist Writers on Fiction. Guess I will have to hunt for a copy.

    Funny, it was couple of decades ago while reading a lot of Ursula LeGuin and Edward Abbey (Could two authors be more different?) that my political thought was more anarchistic in nature then anything else. I guess it is time to dig up my old copy of Always Coming Home.

  692. #698 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    January 21, 2010

    Finding a photo of me just got a whole lot easier. (But don’t immediately start scrolling. Read the whole thing, comments included

    I knew you were evil. Just look at those devil eyes.

  693. #699 Lynna, OM
    January 21, 2010

    “slighting” should be “slightly” in my post @694 — this mistake was made in a post intentionally slighting David M’s devilish eyes.

    Back to enjoying morning coffee, and researching the costs of CT scans at local sources of medical imaging –I’m still in fuck’em mode most of the time, but trying to resist sounding like that on the phone. I may need some of these people to cut me a break.

  694. #700 PZ Myers
    January 21, 2010

    Again? Jeez, you guys, it’s like you can’t shut up.

    More space for conversation here.