Patterico's Pontifications


Sockpuppet Black Friday, Friday, Friday…

Filed under: General — Aaron Worthing @ 10:00 pm

[Guest post by Aaron Worthing; if you have tips, please send them here.  Or by Twitter @AaronWorthing.]

Yes, we already had a sock puppet thread, on the theory that Wednesday is sort of the “Friday” of Thanksgiving Week.  But some of us still have to work on Friday, myself included, so Friday is still the last day before the proper weekend and all that, so… here’s another Sockpuppet thread.

As usual, you are positively encouraged to engaged in sockpuppetry on this thread. The usual rules apply.

Please be sure to switch back to your regular handle when commenting on other threads. I have made that mistake myself.

And remember, the worst sin you can commit on this thread is not being funny.


And for this week’s Friday Frivolity, witness my friends the horror of Kohl’s Black Friday ad:

Click on the picture to watch, or go to this link.

And don’t hate me too much for it.

[Posted and authored by Aaron Worthing.]

Happy Thanksgiving to Greg Packer

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 6:58 pm

And congratulations on punking CBS:

Greg Packer, meanwhile, got to see the Macy’s Day Parade and eat dinner at a Salvation Army. He said it was only natural to catch the next tradition.

“On the American shopping holiday, you pretty much try to find what you’re looking for and when you find what you’re looking for, you grab it while you can,” he said.

On this Thanksgiving, I give thanks for the existence of a man who must be quoted.

Happy Thanksgiving

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 11:22 am

[I am reprinting the post below from 2006, about a mental exercise I sometimes employ to help me appreciate the good things in my life. Many people have written me to say that they have given their loved ones an extra hug after reading the post.

Even if you’re going through a rough time, there are no doubt positive aspects of your life that you won’t be able to count on forever. Hopefully this post will help you not to take those things for granted. Happy Thanksgiving.]

I’ve discovered a way to bring a new perspective to your life.

To explain it, I have to tell a little story.

Driving home Friday night, I was remembering a time years ago, when my daughter Lauren (now six years old) was in her first year. An old friend of mine was coming to town, and we went with my wife to see a Glen Phillips solo acoustic concert down near San Diego.

We were very excited to see the show. But for some reason, we couldn’t get a babysitter. So we decided to take Lauren. Since it was just an acoustic show, we hoped that she’d sleep peacefully on my lap. If, during the show, she got upset, I would take her out to the car. Thereafter, my wife and I would take turns watching her in the car.

Lauren was asleep when the concert began — but she awoke, crying, five seconds into the first song. It was louder than we had thought it would be. I hurriedly took her to the car, which was parked on the street about half a block away.

Once I had her out there, I never brought her back inside the club. Although part of me wanted to be back inside watching the concert, I was also having fun being with my daughter — at times talking to her when she was awake, and at times watching her sleep. Plus, I wanted to let my wife see the whole concert. I figured there was no reason to interrupt her enjoyment if I was having a perfectly good time.

It wasn’t so much that I preferred to be with my daughter than to watch a concert. I just didn’t mind staying out with her in the car.

Thinking about this the other night, I asked myself: Patrick, if you could go back to that night, right now, and either stay out in the car with Lauren, or be inside and watch the concert — which would you do?

And of course the answer was obvious.

The night it happened, I didn’t mind being in the car with my daughter. But if I could go back now, there’s no question that I would want to be there.

Not only would I stay in the car with her — I would make the most of the experience, realizing that I had a precious chance to see her at that age again. I would try to commit every moment to memory.

And then I realized: some day, years in the future, I might be asking the same question about my life today — this very minute. If you could have this moment back to live over again, what would you do?

The rest of that evening, I pictured myself as having been sent into my body from the future, to relive the moments I was experiencing. And I saw everything differently. I sat on the couch and watched television with my arm around my wife — all the while imagining myself as an old man, transported back in time to relive that moment. And all of a sudden, what otherwise might have seemed like a mundane moment seemed like a privilege. I felt like the luckiest guy in the world, just sitting there with my wife.

I’ve tried the trick all weekend, and it really changes your outlook. Just sitting around with a sleepy child in your arms is great any way you look at it. But if you picture yourself as someone whose child has grown up — if you imagine yourself as an older man, who would give the world to be back in that chair with that child in his arms — it makes you realize how important the moment is. And you appreciate it more.

Like any epiphany, I know that this will pass, to be remembered only from time to time. I hope I remember it often, when routine is wearing on me.

But there are times I actively need to forget it, because this outlook promotes a sort of hedonism. For example, right now, I need to clean the house — but that’s not really what I would choose to do if I were sent here from the future.

Oh, well. I’m going to clean up anyway. I think the guy from the future would understand — sometimes, you just gotta do what you gotta do. I can hear my future self in my head right now. He says to make a nice cup of coffee and put on some music while I do it, and take some breaks to play with the kids. Enjoy the chores as well as the easy and fun moments, I hear him saying. Some day, you’ll miss even the chores. Some day, you’ll miss almost everything about your life the way it is right now.

Open Thread: What Are You Thankful For?

Filed under: General — Aaron Worthing @ 10:29 am

[Guest post by Aaron Worthing; if you have tips, please send them here.  Or by Twitter @AaronWorthing.]

Nothing complicated, just a thread to say happy Thanksgiving and offering you a chance to share what you are thankful for this year.

And at the very real risk of being called a kiss up, I will say that besides family and friends, and having a job in this rough economy, I am thankful to Patrick for letting me borrow his blog for well over a year now.  This continues to be one of the coolest experiences in my life, thanks in no small part to the commenters.

Well, besides the trolls and stalkers, that is.  But they are not nearly bad enough to harsh my buzz.

So have a good day, and try not to kill anyone when the stores open at midnight.  🙂

[Posted and authored by Aaron Worthing.]

A Trifecta of Stupid Dishonesty From Ken Ashford

Filed under: General — Aaron Worthing @ 9:36 am

[Guest post by Aaron Worthing; if you have tips, please send them here.  Or by Twitter @AaronWorthing.]

Hey, to celebrate this day, let’s carve up a liberal turkey and give thanks to him for providing us someone to laugh at.  Ken Ashford writes at the little blog known as the Seventh Sense and I have clashed with him before for his dishonesty. But I had ignored the blog for a few months and apparently when the cat was away the mouse played.

First up we have a post attacking me called: Pig (And Stupid Lawyer) of the Day. In the post he alleges that I said here that if Hermain Cain approached an employee with a sexual quid pro quo (i.e. “sleep with me or you’re fired/won’t get that promotion”) that it was not sexual harassment.  Then he spends the remainder of the post citing things like the EEOC to prove that in fact saying “sleep with me or your fired” is indeed classic sexual harassment.

There’s only one problem.  I never said it wasn’t sexual harassment.  In fact, I said the opposite.  And for extra hilarity, Mr. Ashford actually quoted the passage where I said that such behavior was sexual harassment but failed to understand that I had said it.  Here’s the passage he quoted, just as Kenny-boy quoted it:

Or did [Cain] do the full quid pro quo (“something for something”) and say, “sleep with me or you are fired/won’t get that promotion, etc.?” Now I want to be careful to say that we are not nearly there, yet, but if that is what it was, then it’s not just “sexual harassment.” Seriously what do you call it when you give something of value in exchange for sex? In most states, that’s prostitution.

And then he goes on in self-righteous fashion, thinking that he as Ahab finally has the opportunity to kill his white whale, writing:

No, Aaron.  An employer saying to an employee[] “sleep with me or else you are fired/won’t get that promotion” is the textbook definition[*] of sexual harassment.  It is a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.  Go back to law school (or alternatively, get a job and read the company employee manual).

And all because apparently he doesn’t know what the word “just” means in this context.  Read that passage again.  I said it was not just sexual harassment. If you go to Webster’s Dictionary and look it up as the adverb, definition 3 a will inform you that the term “just” can mean “only, simply <just last year> <just be yourself>.”  So in context I was saying nothing more than that such conduct is not merely sexual harassment but also solicitation of prostitution as well.  I was saying it was both.

Pro-tip, Kenny boy.  Before you accuse someone of being stupid, double check and make sure you aren’t the one being stupid.  Or else that person might make you look stupid.


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