Open Thread by John Cole| December 25, 20118:46 pm| 122 CommentsThis post is in: Open ThreadsFacebookTweetEmailTrying very hard to care about Bears/Packers.
Glad Christmas is over. I’d enjoy the holiday much more if it weren’t so fucking much work.
We had waaaay too much food at my mother in law’s. There were about a dozen different dishes. Everyone was so stuffed we didn’t even touch the desserts we all brought up. And after everyone eats, we spend all of our time putting the leftovers away and doing dishes. This after spending yesterday cooking.
Really, we need to simplify. Four dishes and bread. We don’t need more than that and then we wouldn’t be spending all of our family time doing the fucking dishes.
Yeah I’m grumpy.
Nothing else on. But Saints-Falcons tomorrow!!
@Southern Beale: Because of people working, we haven’t even started Christmas yet. I may be 61, but dammit, all those presents under the tree are starting to call to me: “Come shake me, come rattle me.”
And the roast beast, while thawing, is not yet in the oven.
Villago Delenda Est
Well, last week’s wild fantasies of the Seahawks backing their way into the playoffs are now, officially, dead, after last night’s loss to the 49ers.
I’ve been in the “wait until next year” mode since the preseason, so no biggie.
Failing, me. But in turkey plus red wine coma, large men suffering physical exertion for my entertainment works.
Loneoak (co-owner of the Green Bay Packers)
I got one share of Packers stock for Xmas! Best present evar!
I am nervously chewing my nails off, watching the Boxing Day test between Australia – India here in Amsterdam. Thank God I have the day off tomorrow.
Odie Hugh Manatee
@Villago Delenda Est:
The Seahawks are the reason I quit giving a shit about football. I was a fan from day one and by the early 90’s I had just given up.
A person can only take so much abuse…
I first read that is “physical erection.”
Not that there’s anything wrong with that.
Because of people working ….
I was thinking about the people who must work today, as we had a 2 hour drive to the in-laws. Lots of gas stations and convenience stores open on Christmas Day, and then someone told me there’s a football game on today, and I thought DAY-YAMN, we make all those people work on Christmas Day? The concessions workers, the parking lot attendants, the custodial staff? After making such a big fucking deal about saying MERRY CHRISTMAS — none of this Happy Holidays which is waaay too secular! — we then ditch this supposedly holy of holy days because people have to work.
I mean, I feel for anyone who has to work today, police and fire department folks doctors and nurses and all that, but those are jobs which serve the public good. Working a football game or at a gas station? That’s just serving capitalism.
I am sure there are workers who are more than happy to have the hours but I just think the fact that they’re having a football game today is just more evidence of the hypocrisy of our noble “war on Christmas.”
@Odie Hugh Manatee: As a long time Saints fan, all I can say is never give up.
@chowkster: India sitting pretty at the moment. Let’s see.
Loneoak (co-owner of the Green Bay Packers)
Bah, put in moderation. Edited message with misspelled trigger words:
I got one shaire of Packers stoock for Xmas! Best present evar!
Having watched most of the series ER, I have come to believe that medical professionals working on Xmas usually have to cope with a mass transportation disaster, several children’s deaths, and at least one miracle.
I got a share of Packer’s stock for Xmas! Best present evar.
Bears QB was an assistant HS football coach in October.
This is why, when I root for an NFL team, it’s the Packers. Fan-owned, small town goodness.
Best news is all the EPL footie on tomorrow for Boxing Day. Looking forward to leftovers and a full dvr.
Newtonmas (thanks, Tom) dinner:
Brined, pan-seared Richardson Farms (local [Austin, TX]) bone-in pork chops topped with a prickly pear jelly, apple cider vinegar, and La Mesilla red chile reduction
Local, organic (Johnson’s Backyard, also ATX) kale braised with onions, garlic, homemade stock, and local uncured bacon
Local, organic (Johnson’s Backyard) oven-roasted yellow cauliflower
Tragically, I didn’t photoblog jefferyw-style, because we had to tuck into it right away. Most expensive implement used, a $100 Shun knife (suck it, McMegan).
I hope everyone had a great Christmas, best to all!!
Sorry for the many repeat comments. Still not sure how moderation works around here.
Obamas’ were seen attending church today. Has any one seen the tundra twit, let alone her ‘family’, go to church today ?
@Loneoak: Looks like we’re getting induced on Wed. for a Thurs or Fri birth. Little guy on the way!
Mrs. BG not at all please with the name “Tunch” for him. I guess all the t-shirts have to go back.
@amk: I can’t see AZ from here, but we’re only on the 3rd floor.
I package Bays English muffins (lightly toasted)
One pouch Boboli sauce
One Kraft Italian Classic (shredded)
Kessler and Squirt
@BGinCHI: missus seems to be the sensible half. Advance congrats.
Amazingly, that miracle usually involves a pregnant woman who was turned away from a motel because it was full.
@amk: Can’t argue with that. Smart and able to pass a small human. Women are amazing.
OK, I’m really effing up the football thread.
That’s great! Maybe you’ll get a New Years baby?!
Not that I’m an expert or anything, but the one thing that saved us was learning how to stay ahead of the contractions with the breathing. Pitocin makes for gnarly contractions, so you really need to keep one eye glued to the monitor so you can help her breath deeply and evenly before the contraction peaks—if you wait for the peak, she won’t be able to stay in control and recover between contractions. Hope yours goes more smoothly than ours did, but you’ll end up happy whatever happens in the end.
@phantomist: English muffin pizzas rule
@Southern Beale: I was surprised to find my local Giant supermarket open. I was glad because the Lyra Nook light that I bought for my wife had dead batteries, but I’m sure it ruined the holiday for a bunch of those folks working today.
@BGinCHI: Why do Packers fans feel the need to prove the moral superiority of their support? Root for any team you want, but it’s just football.
@Loneoak: Thanks for that. Really looking forward to the end of the process. She’s definitely ready for it to be over. Just hope it goes relatively smoothly.
Now, if we could just settle on a name….
Santa brought me a six-CD set of classic Quintet of the Hot Club of France recordings. I’ll be spending this week marveling at what Django Reinhardt was able to do with only two fully functional fingers on his left hand.
because they can.
@BGinCHI: In these matters, the other half wins 99% of the time. So why not just give up ?
Go watch some futball or something.
I wouldn’t assume that. Giant is unionized, so those folks are probably making double-time-and-a-half (around $50/hr) today. Working on Christmas is paying for Christmas.
@Southern Beale: @Moonbatting Average:
Roast lamb, roasted sprouts, mashed potatoes/parsnips cooked in cream and butter, lemon/rosemary butter sauce for dipping.
Oh, and cloverleaf rolls.
@BGinCHI: Two weeks later and my wife is still mumbling about how great it is to not be pregnant anymore, even though the tradeoff is a full time job of handling one person or another’s bodily fluids.
On the names, you’re probably going to lose so you might as well use your momentum in losing gracefully to earn concessions. I used one veto on a boy’s name, but otherwise she did most of the choosing. He was 5 days old before we decided on a middle name, and his great-grandmother chose it.
My real name is Jacob, and I had always wanted to have a Jr. and call him Jeb. But Jacob is the number 1 boys name for 5 years running … because of fucking Twilight. That wasn’t going to work, needless to say.
The BJ Fantasy Football finals came down to tonight’s game. One more Rodgers completion and it’s all over.
Having a terrible weekend. My eldest cat, Bailey is going in tomorrow. It’s unbelievable how fucking bad this hurts, and even more, that these buggers manage to make this worth it.
Here’s the little man in the back yard
Good news is my green beans were a success. I’ve had this running thing with my M-I-L from day one about her green beans, which are cooked beyond recognition of ever being a living thing. Me, I use fresh beans, steam them just a tish, then sautee in butter and garlic for flavor. So for years I’d never eat her nasty overcooked beans and finally she asked me to bring my beans for Christmas, while she made hers, and guess whose beans got eaten at dinner? Hers were barely touched.
SUCCESSS! Another victory in the war on Christmas.
So sorry to hear about Gex, what is his problem? Just old age? We’ve had to put down more than our fair share of dogs and cats — my beloved dog Zelda last Christmas. It’s always so hard to know if it’s the right time.
Villago Delenda Est
OK, checking…up…this is the open NFL thread…
The ownership situation of the Packers scares the bejebus out of the rich assholes who constitute the ownership of the rest of the NFL.
@Southern Beale: Just old. He’d been moved to the Science Diet k/d, and the last two mornings he has not woken me with demands for it. I take that as a hint that the time is right, even if I’m not ready.
J. Michael Neal
@chowkster: Who the hell is Ed Cowan?
@Villago Delenda Est:
In your fantasies, perhaps, but in the real world it’s just a charming anachronism.
because they outlawed it.
but please, tell us more about shareholder value.
I added sliced almonds today, actually. Don’t always add the almonds … must say, hadn’t thought of amaretto. Sounds yum!
J. Michael Neal
Some years ago, we established the tradition of eating out on Christmas at a really good restaurant.
Xmas present for PC skyrim players:
Level 44, only UNBOUND (tutorial), First Lessons completed (entry to the Mage University).
Smurfed Build, Unbeatable, many skills maxed. An endgame character for playing through the game as a god. No console commands were used.
Disclaimer: Be careful with the potions, they can damage your character or make the game crash if you are not careful. Meant for selling. OTOH If you know what you are doing with these, have at them.
Should save anyone who wants to play through w/ an endgame build massive amounts of time. Still plenty of skills left to level as well, so you have plenty to do.
To use the save, be sure to copy it into your “My Document (aka Documents)/My Games/Skyrim/Saves
Link doesn’t work. And I want to look at that feast.
Ah, kidney disease. Yeah we’ve lost quite a few friends to that, too. Don’t know if you’ve tried this/are up to it, but we got a good bit of extra quality time out of all of our friends with some sub-cutaneous fluids. Just did it at home, basically it flushes their kidneys out. Got another year out of Frasier and it sure made him feel better, too. It’s super easy to do, and you just pay for the fluid bag and ringer, they’ll give you some needles.
So, his name obviously should be Jordy now.
Busted ass from Virginia through North and South Carolina to get home for the second half!
Oh Gex, I’m so sorry. What a beautiful kitteh Bailey is. Hugs and condolences.
Here’s a YouTube video:
As I said, we’ve done it with two of our cats and it can add years to their life.
@Southern Beale: … Aaand here the Spousal Unit & I just got home from a delicious dinner at the best Chinese restaurant north of Boston (Su Chang’s, if anybody cares). But I’m not gonna feel guilty, because (a) we eat there often enough during the rest of the year to be recognized by the waitstaff; and (b) it was really crowded, even at almost 9pm.
@Gex: Bailey is indeed gorgeous. And lucky to be living with people who appreciate him, and keep his best interests in mind even when they (you) know how much it’s going to hurt…
@jeffreyw: You’ll appreciate the menu for the Christmas Buffet at the Hotel Roanoke.
@Gex: I hope the new year holds some early goodness to make up for this one’s bad finish.
I had a boy cat that died of kidney failure. It was years ago. It is so very painful when this happens. I don’t have any cheery word to offer. Let us know tomorrow how you do.
@Loneoak: Twilight!! No!!
I wondered why that was the #1 name. That’s depressing.
Those books are a loath-a-thon. I’d rather read the WaPo. OK, it’s a tie.
Thanks guys. This is a great community of pet-friendly people. I love it.
No idea who Ed Cowan is, but if the Indian bowling continues to suck he could still be batting at this time tomorrow.
@J. Michael Neal:
Cowan is a Tasmanian opener who’s been doing pretty well in domestic cricket this season.
Not that Australia had much choice after Hughes, the guy he replaces, was bowled and caught by the same combination of bowler and fielder four times in a row against New Zealand.
@burnspbesq: Both sides have blooded yung’uns in this series. It will be interesting to see who dies on the pitch.
Ponting is fighting for his cricketing life. The aussies always treat their ex-captains rather shabbily.
@burnspbesq: Hey, how come you won’t answer me when I ask you if that big white dog is yours?
I see another deep water well has sprung a massive leak, this time off the coast of Nigeria. In an apparent attempt to engender the same sort of disdain and loathing BP faced, Shell lied about the size of the spill.
I went to the movies today, and stopped at a Chinese restaurant afterwards. As far as I am concerned, all the workers at these establisments were serving the public good. When I am not visiting family, which I could not do this year, a movie and dinner are a holiday tradition.
Saw Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, a tremendous and tremendously well acted movie, though unnecessarily cryptic in places, if you are not familiar with the novel or the British mini series with Alec Guiness.
Overheard at dinner two people talking about the new Sherlock Holmes movie. One person evidently had never heard of Holmes, had never read a Holmes story or ever seen any of the movie or tv incarnations. She knew of Robert Downey Jr because of Iron Man, and just wanted to see what other cool stuff he was in. She didn’t understand why the movie was not set in the present day.
“tell us more about shareholder value.”
If I thought you were capable of getting it, I’d be happy to.
Said so more than once. Sorry you missed it.
@burnspbesq: Cool, what a beauty.
eta I was thinkin maybe you pied me:)
Well the Bears lose and are eliminated so the Falcons are in. Mixed emotions but the Bears weren’t going anywhere anywaze.
If it was, it’d be CSI:Baker Street.
Wait, there was an NFL game tonight?
@Hill Dweller: But fewer people will care, since it’s across the ocean and happening to more brown people.
I skipped seeing a movie today and went to a Japanese/Thai fusion place I just heard about. Not bad, though their basil beef was uninspired. Their sushi was excellent, though. I love a place that makes it impossible to eat the tobiko roll without having to deal with spilled roe.
If I had the energy and money, I’d be at karaoke right now. But reality must be honored.
I’m watching a screener of Warrior, and after seeing Tom Hardy rip shit up in this flick, I might end up rooting for Bane in the new Batman movie next summer.
We’re watching “Holiday Inn” and just got to the tender scene where Bing Crosby applies blackface makeup to his girlfriend as he proposes to her.
And then it gets worse as Bing himself comes out in blackface for the musical number and OMFG WTF IS THIS SHIT?!
@Southern Beale: You’re making the mistake of assuming that the “War on Christmas” people are motivated by genuine religious conviction. But, of course, they aren’t. It’s just pure unthinking tribalism.
Whatever other delusions they may hold, serious believers, even fundy ones (such as, say, Cal Thomas), generally aren’t worried all that much about whether or not the name of their Lord is invoked by salespeople. Some of these people, including an aunt of mine, don’t even celebrate Christmas themselves due to it being all unbiblical and pagan and Romish and all, but that’s a whole ‘nother issue.
It’s the people for whom being “Christian” is shorthand for being a True White Heartland Middle American – IOW, people like this asshole – that keep losing their shit over this stuff every year. The actual content of the holiday matters far less to them than making sure everyone submits to the hegemony of the Ingroup.
Have you seen the BBC Sherlock (that returns next month!). Those whovians know how to make good tv.
Villago Delenda Est
They cleaned the “Minstrel” part of the movie up for “White Christmas.” No blackface.
Hey, look at this: turns out the Greatest Conservative Evar, Winston Churchill, was a thoroughly ugly racist, always in favor of bombing and gassing all wogs, everywhere, including the Irish wogs, Russian wogs, Jewish wogs, and lower-class British wogs. Nobody tell Sully!
The true horror doesn’t occur until Marjorie Reynolds starts dancing in her pickaninny wig.
@Villago Delenda Est:
Yeah, but “White Christmas” is a thoroughly craptastatic movie. Download or stream the Ihnatko Almanac episode number 11, “Occupy White Christmas,” to hear a thorough, non mean spirited demolition of this faux holiday classic.
I wanted Minerva or Atticus. I didn’t get either, so feel free to use them as you see fit. ;)
@Gex: I lost my Nico (a.k.a. the Best Cat Ever) a few years back to kidney failure. I cried and cried, and had to buy a new couch, as she’d been unable to go in the litterbox for so long. It sucks so unbelievably much, but you’ll know what to do and when.
Hugs to you.
Brother Shotgun of Sweet Reason
@BGinCHI: Two adoptions. I tell people that the labor was a 12-hour overnight flight with a baby with a cold who wouldn’t sleep unless you walked him up and down the aisle bouncing him gently on your shoulder.
Naming? They both came with a name, which we kept, so I consider myself lucky in that regard.
Brother Shotgun of Sweet Reason
@Southern Beale: After years and years of eating green bean/mushroom soup casserole, I pulled out “Joy of Cooking” and made them with butter and sliced almonds and they were great and well received. After that, though, back to mushroom soup. Sigh.
@Southern Beale: Hi Beale.
We had a much lower impact gathering than you did. I indirect-grilled a lovely bone-in rib roast, which though it wasn’t perfect, fell into the pretty-damned-good category. We had mashed potatoes with various veggies in it, a mushroom-wine reduction sauce, a sour cream (fresh) horseradish sauce and a baked vegetable medley. With wine, martinis and excellent scotch. Lively conversation. No one was drunk (a first for us). Lovely. Christmas is such a good excuse for a good time, even for folk who aren’t Christians, don’t you agree?
@burnspbesq: if i thought you were capable, i’d listen.
It’s the seventh anniversary of the tsunami that killed about a quarter of a million people on the shores of the Indian Ocean back in 2004.
I remember that at around 9am that day I happened to feel a slight shaking here in Kuala Lumpur. And I saw the doors of my wardrobe shaking ever so slightly …
@suzanne: Waitaminute…one of your kidlets could have been a Minerva? Was Mia a compromise or something?
@Yutsano: Yeah, Mr. Suzanne didn’t like Minerva, but liked Mia because it’s shorter. Since our last name is recognizably Italian and long, and the kids also have my maiden name, we went with something shorter. There’s also been an Ava born in the family recently, and we’d considered that, as well, but there’s about 58768646328 little Avas running around right now.
@suzanne: Minerva is the name of a fucking Roman goddess. How much more Italiano do you get? :)
@Yutsano: THAT’S WHAT I SAID. He was not convinced.
Minerva is also Professor McGonagall’s first name. Another Italian name tucked into the Potter canon is Ginevra — Ginny Weasley’s full first name.
@suzanne: You need to pack that boy up and ship him off to Roma for a month or six. He needs to get back in touch with his culture.
@Amir Khalid: OOH!! I loves me some Easter egg hunts!
@Odie Hugh Manatee: Took the Saints more than 40 years but they finally won one. Suck it up, bud.
@suzanne: I have friends with a son named Atticus. Father is a linguistics guy who joked about wanting to add “Gram” to the beginning of it.
I know. He’s never been. He doesn’t like marinara sauce. He was unable to name any Renaissance artists who were not the namesakes for Ninja Turtles. He’s never seen “The Godfather”. I think Kim Jong Il was more Italian than he is.
@Amir Khalid: Yeah, the fact that it was in the HP books was why he didn’t want to use it. I’ve loved it forever, because Minerva was the goddess of the intellect. But no dice.
But I don’t know if Minerva is one of the names that would be handed down to Italians today. You have classical names like Aglaura being used very unself-consciously in at least one story.
(The first 10 Italian pages in Google have “Minerva Titani” which may be an obviously fake name and the Minerva, which is a kind of Navy ship. Whereas the first 2 pages contain Facebook pages for two obviously real people named Aglaura.)
There is Athena to get around the HP problem. You could even point out that that is John Scalzi’s daughter’s name.
(Seriously, in those 10 pages “Minerva” seems to be favored more as the name of an institution, of various kinds.)
@4jkb4ia: But Athena isn’t as cool.
The Who once used the name Athena as a song title.
@Amir Khalid: The Who haven’t been cool in my lifetime.
@suzanne: The Who haven’t been cool in their own lifetimes.
Ha ha. Just kidding. You must’ve been born after ’71.
Hmph. Young people nowadays …
Considering what he does for a living he could get a job there like yesterday. All you’d need is an EU arch credential and you’re set.
MAMMA MIA!! Did he fall into a vat of it as a child or something?
That seems to be an unfortunate American problem. But jeez, there’s a fucking DISH named for one!
Neither have I. But I also have no Roman blood.
It would, as always, be irresponsible not to speculate.
The prophet Nostradumbass
I wonder how many people there are in the USA who think that tomatoes are actually from Italy.
Isn’t “Mamma mia!” a Swedish expression?
@The prophet Nostradumbass: My guess is many. This is not a uniquely American stereotype however.
Comrade Nimrod Humperdink
@The prophet Nostradumbass:
I don’t know, but I do know that spaghetti is grown in Switzerland.
The BBC told me so.
@Amir Khalid: It would, as always, be irresponsible not to speculate.
@Citizen_X: No need to tell Sully he already knows this deep in his little black heart. Hitch knew this too, they are peas in a pod/ Raised on a diet of upper-crust English superiority its not hard to understand the hard on they got about bombing the hell out of Iraq. Its all part of the white mans burden. Wogs need to be kept in line and shown who the boss really is.
We have the same nasty strain here in the US (see:the mustache of sucking on it). But it really reaches its full flower with those upper-middle class twit of the year contestants.
@SiubhanDuinne: Ack! Here it is: Roasted leg of lamb and stuff.
This little girl wondering why “companies trick girls into buying the pink stuff” warms the cockles of me heart …
You go, girl!
Sure, but then you’re not one of the ones shrieking IT’S MERRY CHRISTMAS THAT MOST HOLY OF DAYS CHRISTIAN NATION FOUNDING FATHERS JESUS’ BIRTHDAY BLARGH BLARGH ARGH on Fox News.
My point being people who decry the secularization of the nation are the very ones who are driving it with their worship of consumerism.
Minerva! That would be a great name! The cuddly little girl would be known throughout the family as “Minnie the Smoocher”.
Do you have any evidence for your (implicit) assertion that Giant workers are routinely making $20 an hour? All I can find is this.
I have rodgers in the “other” bj league which is points rather than head to head. Big night for him but last weeks failure killed my chances to get anywhere near the overall lead.
@The prophet Nostradumbass:
San Marzano tomatoes are from Italy, and are about the most delicious things ever.
An assumption based on knowledge of what unionized workers make in SoCal.
So nothing, then, to confirm your assumption? Just as a formality, of course.