Open thread by DougJ| February 11, 20141:07 pm| 85 CommentsThis post is in: Open ThreadsFacebookTweetEmailSlow day of blogging here.
It’s too cold to type.
It’s early, but James Taranto makes a bid for asshole of the year.
The weather has nearly destroyed my car (electrical system, now the transmission seems to have snapped something), I think it is making everyone I know feel like hell, and one of my closest friends passed away in the middle of all this, and it hasn’t warmed up yet.
I have never hated winter so much.
He’s going to have a lot of competition. The thing these days for the GOP seems to be to out-jerk everyone else. The biggest fucking jerk wins.
@BGinCHI: Hang on for another day. We’re up into the low teens in MN with warmer weather on the way. There are a lot of +30’s in next week’s forcast.
For all you BJ’ers in the Southeast, I hope you can batten down the hatches for tomorrow. Good Lord, enough with this friggin’ winter.
For a good laugh, read this RedState diary on how deep the 2016 GOP bench is.
I got one ready to go. But I’ll post it in a few minutes or so, just to give this one a little room to breathe.
Oh, it’s piled high and deep. SCARED YET, LIBS?
My old Sentra is becoming too creaky to drive. Do any BJers have any opinions on the Prius? How does it handle in cold temps? I used to have a Camry, is Prius more or less like a Camry?
Culled from a slow news day:
State dinner for French president is being held in a tent on the lawn of the White House.
In the cold.
Does not compute.
Still been -20 and highs of zero to 5 above in the northern regions of MN for-freaking-ever.
For Bill Murray fans, Charlie Rose interviewed him last night on PBS, and Bill was the most serious and thoughtful I have seen him. Hard to believe it was the same guy who arrived flying in a Peter Pan costume on Letterman last week.
From the last thread:
BTW I finally wrote a post about Lori Gottlieb’s stupid magazine article for the NYT, according to her couples splitting household chores puts a damper on intimacy.
Yes she is the same woman who wrote an whiny rant about the ACA.
@Comrade Jake: I can not believe I actually clicked on that link. Please 12:30 conference call, please start ASAP!
@NotMax: Trying to deep freeze Hollande’s libido and libitidinous desire to hit on Beyonce.
@Comrade Jake: OK. That did bring a smile. That list is to deep benches as Grand Fenwick was to strategic supremacy.
@schrodinger’s cat: How cold is cold? A friend of mine in northern VT has a Prius and reports that everything runs fine until temps fall below -15 or so, at which point it gets horrendous mileage.
Shirley Temple has gone to the great beyond.
Despite being probably the biggest child star of all-time, she managed to live an adult life free of convenience store robberies and trips to the Betty Ford clinic.
@beltane: I live in Massachusetts.
@Comrade Jake: He doesn’t seem to have mentioned Santorum, but I don’t think Senator Man-On-Dog is so easily dismissed. The Froth will rise again!!
David in NY
@schrodinger’s cat: Katha Pollitt asked why does anyone take her seriously? Damned if I know. Piece of tripe.
@Comrade Jake: @Chyron HR: That RedState piece, devoid of anything but sophomoric adulation for any conservative not named Christie or Kasich, really cheered me up. Unfortunately the cheer is for 2016, and 2014 is the real, real problem.
@schrodinger’s cat: The Prius should be fine for you.
@David in NY: I don’t but NYT does, I guess it makes Tom Friedman and resident Punditubbies look less stupid.
@schrodinger’s cat: A) plenty of Priuses on the road in Massachusetts.B) I don’t own one, but my wife drove one for a week or two as a production rental. She said it was OK — felt a little light at speed on the highway. The location was up in Burlington, which meant a lot of 128 time, so that stuck in her mind.
There is a hybrid Camry, of course. A friend of mine owned one for several years and put a lot of miles on it. Seemed to like it a lot (until he replaced it w. a Tesla. That’s a sweet car — and many times more expensive than one I’ll ever own.)
@Tom Levenson: @beltane: I think it looks a bit too grandma, but hubcat’s heart is set on it. Its seems a bit too light to me I want a Subaru.
PS. I liked the way the Camry drove but was not too wild about the looks.
No medal for Shaun White.
You knew it was a bad omen when he pulled out of the slopestyle event.
Between the Republicans caving on the debt ceiling and Karl Rove suggesting that revisiting the Lewinski affair might be a bad plan, I am thinking of listening to Mark Levin this afternoon, just to listen to his very first on-air stroke.
David in NY
@schrodinger’s cat: Yeah, who’s running the Mag, I wonder? First Hillary’s weird picture, then this.
What is it about computer issues that instantly turns me into HULK SMASH? I download a LOT of books from Audible.com, and today the “Download” button is borked. So I get on insta-chat with Tech Support, and I find myself getting weirdly enraged at the smallest technical workaround.
Really enraged, like “NEVER DOING BUSINESS WITH THIS OUTFIT AGAIN” kind of anger, never mind that my hour-and-a-half commute is only bearable because BOOKS BOOKS BOOKS.
Computer issues just do that to me, why is that?
Would include her (as a child actress) in a troika with Mickey Rooney and Baby Peggy. Jackie Coogan and Jane Withers arguably could make it a quintet.
Like Samson of the bible, he seemed to lose his edge when he sheared off his mane.
In doing so, he had fully transformed from Shaun White, free wheeling snowboard dudebro, to Shaun White, Inc.
@schrodinger’s cat: My sister just got the baby Lexus hybrid — the CT200h. She loves it so far, having downsized from a Subaru Outback 6 cyl. She lives in LA and puts a lot of miles on the road (commuting from West LA to ~Pasadena) and hasn’t missed the big beast at all.
Here’s a quicky comparison article for a bunch of small hybrids. The Ford’s been getting a lot of love lately.
D.D. Circuit opinion in the Gitmo hunger-strike case is out. Bottom line: no preliminary injunction against force-feeding, because the court doesn’t think plaintiffs have demonstrated probable success on the merits on either their statutory (RFRA) or constitutional claims. However, the Court of Appeals rejected the Government’s argument that the Military Commissions Act stripped the District Court of jurisdiction, so the case can continue. Although, given the Court of Appeals’ thorough discussion of the law governing habeas corpus challenges by prisoners to the conditions of their confinement, it would require pretty big balls for a District Judge to rule for the detainees.
@Cacti: She was also an extreme homophobe.
@Comrade Jake: That really is funny as hell! The comments are delicious. These god damn people are so lost in their bubble they may never get out of it. When you think that Joe-Fuckin’-Scarborough is a legitimate contender you are beyond reach.
I got published in another anthology, this time Mardi Gras Murder, if anyone’s interested I can provide the Amazon.com link…
Paul in KY
@slippytoad: Sorry to hear about your luck & your friend passing away. Hope things get better quickly!
@Tom Levenson: Thanks I will take a look. I am betting that Lexus is probably way out of my range. The Tesla is cool too, but again too spendy!
Paul in KY
@schrodinger’s cat: Coworker has one. No problems starting in cold/driving in cold (10 degrees). She doesn’t like the car’s heater, though.
Wondering what to do with 2 days in L.A.. besides hang with bjers in the evening. Also, too, deets on the meet up this Saturday? Bueller?
Paul in KY
@Cacti: She was extremely wealthy, so the robberies were probably never going to happen. Good on her for living a good, adult life. Heard she was a very nice person. Amazing she came out of that circus as sane as she did.
Paul in KY
@NotMax: Had never heard of ‘Baby Peggy’. Interesting life she’s had.
@NotMax: What do you have to be to be a child star? Would Judy Garland and Elizabeth Taylor qualify? Or were they teen stars.
Congratulations! Is it one of these?
Here’s an Amazon.com link, though not the one you had in mind.
Paul in KY
@PaulW: Way to go! You should feel a great sense of accomplishment.
She was also a creature of her environment. How many politically conservative Americans in their 80s are as accepting of LGBT people as the younger and more liberal?
In Hollywood, would posit that where one’s name shows up in the credits (and longevity of top billing while a child) is a determinative factor, but far from the only one.
@Paul in KY
And she’ll be 96 this year. One of the few from silent film days still among us.
I love Shirley so much (I know, I know, she was a Republican). I am so sad, but I have no time to sit around and watch videos. Maybe later. The NY Times has posted a couple of my favorites — “Laugh, You Son of a Gun” and “Baby Take a Bow.” She was a genius. I won’t hold my breath for a BJ thread.
@Amir Khalid: Actually, I screwed up. I was thinking of Anita Bryant,who was very outspoken (and mockable). Temple-Black was probably more as you say.
The answer to your perplexity is patio heaters. They’re quite capable of warming up a tent until it’s pleasant inside, even when it’s colder than it is in DC.
This is interesting:
He really did do that, too. He all but said that anyone who was a Christian had to expand Medicaid. I think that absolutely drove them crazy in a way that him saying, for example, “it’s good for business!” or “we need the money for rural providers, because we have a lot of low income rural people!” (probably the real reason) might not have.
He was shooting for “compassionate conservative” but his actual argument was indistinguishable from “compassionate liberal”, and it was a blatantly religious argument :)
I watched a lot of Shirley Temple movies when I was a kid. It’s always sad to see actors from that era go.
I was wondering what it was about Cathy McMorris Rodgers response to sotu that I just couldn’t put my finger on. It wasn’t the gulping, there was something else. When I was listening to Randi Rhodes one day, she or a commenter said Rodgers spoke like Shirley Temple in her movies and I burst out laughing. That was it.
Do figure skaters trivialise the Shoa when they perform a routine set to the score from Schindler’s List? I’ve seen this question raised in articles at Salon‘s website and the BBC‘s. Skaters have been using this music for 20 years, since the movie came out, and I don’t understand why there’s a question about it now.
No, it’s one of those.
@Cacti: They aired footage of his big training crash last year…if it was me, I’d be dead. How he competed is beyond comprehension.
Someone should ask him whether he agrees with the following statement: “All Christians should be environmentalists, because we are called by God to be responsible stewards of His creation.”
I’ll always recommend MOCA. If not there, the Getty or the Norton Simon.
Thanks, Shelly. I was supposed to meet a friend for lunch today but it was already sleetingsnowingraining and the temperature was dropping, so we postponed for a week. I loaded up on the basics (dark chocolate, red wine) a couple of days ago and am just battening down now until the whole thing is gone.
Howard Beale IV
Ya gotta love the cognitive dissonance….
@Amir Khalid: Now, skating to The Pianist would be a whole other story!
Paul in KY
@Amir Khalid: I would say she would be if her costume had a Yellow Star of David on it. Do not think it did. Will note Russians lost huge numbers of people in war & suffered as much in WW II as anyone.
Wow. That looks almost exactly like 2012’s bench, except whiter and dumber.
Christie is already out. His career is over. The GOP governors he wants to cheer on are ALL gigantic assholes who are doing incredibly asshole things right now, and are going to be nationally unelectable.
And of course there’s no Ted Cruz presidency in anyplace except Ted Cruz’ head, and Jeb Bush is also dead on arrival.
The toll this last 18 months has taken on the GOP’s leadership has been enormous.
He seems like quite a catch. Ladies, here’s your chance!
I’ve been to a couple of events in tents in cold weather. There are good heaters, and the tents are really well-designed to be undrafty. Should be quite the elegant dinner.
@Howard Beale IV:
If there’s not enough money to keep everyone on at the company, then there sure as hell isn’t enough money to pay even one cent in bonuses.
Mickey Rooney, Baby Peggy, and Jane Withers are still alive!
@Roger Moore: Also Little Tokyo. The Black Line is a really powerful piece of urban art. Plus that whole area is just fun.
@schrodinger’s cat: I drive a 2007 Prius in Minneapolis/St. Paul.
I have had no problems with ignition or starting her all the way down to -20F this winter. For the most part she handles pretty well in the snow and ice — the battery pack in the back actually helps to stabilize and weigh down the rear wheels, so in my experience the Prius handles winter driving better than my old 1996 Corolla. MAJOR CAVEAT – make sure you have good treads/tires! I’ve definitely noticed that my traction has gone down as my tires start to approach marginal tread.
There is an “engine braking” (B) gear in the Prius that is largely an analogue for low gear in a standard or automatic transmission that basically applies a slight but steady brake as soon as the accelerator is released or relaxed at all — I’ve found that using it in the snow and ice dramatically improves my traction and reduces slippage.
During the coldest part of this winter (-25F) I got roughly 33 mpg, and on average (-10F to 10F or so) I still get around 38-40 mpg. This compares to 45-55 mpg in the summer…depends on how fast I feel like driving :-)
I don’t think the heater does a bad job, especially given how ridiculously cold it’s been this winter, but unless you like to drive in a tropical sauna it is tough to both keep the windshield defrosted and your feet from freezing. It’s definitely a challenge to find a balance where the side windows don’t fog up while keeping from getting too warm or too cold. Personally I endure the cold feet and keep the full defroster running, since I use the rear side windows to check blind spots…the shape of the car and its blind spots were the hardest thing to get used to when I got the Prius, but I was comfortable within a few days.
Hope this helps.
My MIL had two Prii. Smashing the first at high speed she walked away and (despite my protests) bought #2, which she smashed a couple months later and again walked away. Exeunt, driving days.
My takeaway is they’re tough little buggers, even seemingly made of plastic, foam and cardboard. I drove Prius #1 around town for a few days. It’s one of those cars that somehow seem larger inside than out, so well-thought out from that perspective. The cockpit instruments and layout are a love/hate thing–put me in category 2. The real last straw was it stranding me in the parking lot at work, unwilling to propel itself. Got a ride home, returned the next morning and spent half an hour on the phone with Toyota and the owner’s book. Surrendering, they called a tow (must be flat-bedded) and while I waited I kept fiddling and, voila, it began functioning. Drove it home, parked it and never drove it again.
Probably anomalous, but left me a non-fan. Informally, it’s the most common car model in my neighborhood and Japan’s best-selling model, period. I’d rather have a Volt, preferring the concept of electric commute/gas-electric long-range driving. Am newly aware there’s an electirc Fiat 500 which is absolutely the cutest li’l electric car evah, but such things are solely city cars, having limited range.
How about a diesel Jetta or something fun? There’s zero fun to be had in a Prius, from a driving standpoint.
Howard Beale IV
@Tom Levenson: Plenty of Prii up in MN, along with Subies as well. Even seen the odd Leaf and Tesla to boot.
Howard Beale IV
@icedfire: What you running for tires on your Prius? I’m using Nokian WRG3’s.
We went to a wedding ceremony in tent on a frozen MN lake in January a couple of years ago. Beautiful but cold and short! No one removed their coats but the wedding party were in all their finery except for warm winter boots. Some people were a little unnerved by the sounds of ice cracking which is common. It was unique. The reception was in a nice warm building on shore. Minnesotans aren’t quite that nuts.
@Paul in KY:
Not specific to the Prius, but as @icedfire just said the milage of my Honda Insight really drops in cold weather. During the summer I ger around 54 mpg, but this winter it has been down to about 42 when it is “warm” (~15-20 degrees) and maybe 35 mpg when it is 10 below. I have heard other hybrid owners say they have signicant decreases in mpg during the cold weather as well. I know here in the Milwaukee area we have a cold weather blend for gasoline that might be part of the drop, but I think it is also due to the engine taking a while to get to operating temperature.
@Amir Khalid: Ah. I will answer that question, No. Ice Dancers, perhaps, because Ice Dancers are supposed to be interpreting the music. But figure skaters aren’t really trying to interpret a song. The song is just there to provide some kind of musical structure to their skating. A movie soundtrack is not sacred piece of music. It’s incidental music. The reason Shindler’s List is chosen is probably because it is pleasant to listen to and has changes in tempo and dynamic ranges that make effective skating programs. I’d have more problem if someone used excerpts from a Mass or skated to the chants of tibetan monks. But incidental music for a movie isn’t any different than choosing a ballet or opera overature for a competition.
OK, that reply was to schrodinger’s cat, not Paul in KY
@Howard Beale IV: I’m still driving on Kelly Ultra GT tires that were on the Prius when I bought it September 2012 — they were close to brand new then, and they’ve about reached their time when it comes to MN winter.
I’m up in the air as to what I’m going to do on the next set…my partner’s dad sells used tires and could probably get me a decent set for cheap, but that’s just kicking the can down the road. Then again, buying a set of good new tires is a pretty big hit in the wallet.
Battery capacity really takes a hit in low temps, likely transferring a bigger fraction of the propulsion to the engine. Everything else you note has an effect too, including the winter fuel formulation and even the choice of engine oil.
Link with video of the testimony from Michael Dunn earlier this afternoon in the kill-the-thug-if-his-music-is-too-loud murder trial.
I have to say that this fucker doesn’t seem very concerned at all.
Yes, you threw me off there. She was pretty moderate (although favored continuing the Vietnam War when she tried to run for office). She was big on environmental issues, for example. I would have been surprised to hear she was homophobic.
That’s pretty much my feeling about it too. The Salon writer made a big deal of the skater’s red outfit being an overt reference to the girl in the red coat from the movie. But even then I saw nothing in her performance that disrespected the Shoa.
Or maybe this?
Paul in KY
@JCJ: My co-worker did mention the milage dropped in extreme cold (5 degrees or below).
Paul in KY
@mclaren: Excellent, and I fear very true, comments from Mr. Carlin.