Sunday, September 30, 2018

Antecedents, Referents, Reflexives...

So, in this sentence
the lizard bit down on the snake and prevented it from being eaten
what was not eaten?

Nope!

This snake captured a lizard, and began to eat it alive. As the lizard lost the use of its arms and legs by being swallowed, the lizard bit down on the snake and prevented it from being eaten.  Life or death fight and it's all depended on how long this motherfucker can bite down for. Eventually, the snake regurgitated the lizard and both left alive. This dude had no other choice than to prevail.  He adapted, and made shit happen and lived to fight another day.  #staythecourseHere's the whole awkward paragraph, in meme form (a King Snake trying to eat an Alligator Lizard, taken in 2014 (source of photo).

So clearly, it's meant to be the lizard. But nope. Just nope.
"It" can't be the lizard, not syntactically.

Pronouns go to the nearest referent - and that's "snake". Also, since "lizard" is the subject of "prevented", any pronoun referring to it has to be reflexive. That is, "itself". Using the reflexive pronoun directs the reader back to the correct antecedent.

There are, of course, a few more infelicities ("it's all depended", for one), but they don't mislead the reader.

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Saturday, September 29, 2018

Kavanaugh

Here are several things re that train wreck... some funny stuff at the end!


"It is possible that his accusers might have mistook him for someone else... and the mysteriously disappearing gambling debts may be innocuous, not mafia connected. But there is one absolute inarguable fact from last week's hearing. The bilious, voice-cracking rage and openly partisan expressions of hate toward half of the voting populace were not behaviors of a mature jurist and adult. The simple and politically defensible thing for Susan Collins to say is: "Go back to the bench/bullpen and send us a conservative grownup." -David Brin

This by Albert Burneko:
the skeleton key to understanding American conservatism is this: At bottom, it lacks absolutely any moral or ideological underpinning beyond the reactionary protection of moneyed white men—of their station, their wealth and power, and their egos. Its supposed ideas and abstractions are just a framework for spasmodic lashing-out against anything that can be interpreted as a threat to rich white dudes. It likes supply-side economics because the supply side is made of rich white dudes. It likes tax cuts because the taxes are mostly cut for rich white dudes. It likes cops and soldiers because cops and soldiers uphold a social order with rich white dudes at the top. It likes “traditional family values” because social, economic, and sexual dominion over women are the most traditional family values of all. It likes “Make America Great Again” because rich white dudes used to roll through society and over everyone else with even greater impunity than they do now. All of these things are just proxies for reiterating, over and over and over, forever, the power and security and primacy of rich white dudes.

Something else to think about:
What we do know suggests the likelihood that Kavanaugh, both as Associate White House Counsel under George Bush from 2001 to 2003 and then as his White House Staff Secretary from 2003 to 2006, had significant involvement in the Bush Administration’s torture policies. We need to continue to demand to see Bush White House files to “pin down specifics of any Kavanaugh involvement in detainee policy discussions.” (See the Chicago Tribune article by Michael Kranish, “Kavanaugh’s role in Bush-era torture debate now an issue in his Supreme Court nomination,” July 18, 2018.)

This terrific picture from Boing Boing (is that guy on the left asleep???


And this from Andy Borowitz:
Obama said that it was “a little comforting” to know that he was not the only person Kavanaugh neglected to blame in his remarks. “I just got off the phone with George Soros, and he is bummed as well,” Obama said.

And finally, Randy Rainbow!!!!

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Friday, September 28, 2018

Jeopardy! moments

Just a couple of little moments from this week...

First, earlier Rob said he'd never been able to see Book of Mormon because they always wanted $1,000 for a ticket. I don't know what he's talking about. I saw it on Broadway - on Broadway, Rob! - for about 1/3 of that.

And then, tonight. Well, I mean ... the clue for Final was "The first line for the title character in this classic (1970s movie) was 'Why did you go to the police? Why didn't you come to me?'" That had been the New York Times's clue for the day, and I hadn't known it. But when Alex read it, he imitated Marlon Brando's delivery. Which kinda gave it away. Grrrrr. At least they all got it, so no harm no foul. I guess. Grrrrr.

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Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Before the Computer...

Someone posted this on Facebook - Luke Skywalker on Ahch-To ... or rather, Mark Hamill on Skellig Michael, Ireland. All those puffins? They couldn't be displaced, so they were turned into porgs.

Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker surrounded by puffins

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Sunday, September 23, 2018

Puzzled

Here is what I do not understand.

They have a list of nominees. He can't be the only judge they've got who will rule like they want. Why doesn't Trump pull Kavanaugh or he recuse himself - not admitting anything, just to avoid tainting the court with speculation or until there is an investigative result. 

If they did, they could look reasonable. And then, well, he could nominate someone else, they could do their "thorough background check", and vote on him, all before the midterms (though really, they have till January). McConnell could easily call a special session, right? 

Why is "this man right now" their hill to die on? Can't they see what it looks like? It's like they just can't stand being opposed army all, even rightly, like they just can't admit to even a possible mistake. Or like they really think they're entitled to whatever they want.

Even if what they want repels much of the country.

It's not a good look.

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2 Comments:

At 4:39 PM, September 23, 2018 Anonymous Abbot of Unreason had this to say...

I believe it’s because of the footballization of politics. And that man, in particular, doesn’t want to do anything he thinks looks like a loss.

 
At 4:06 PM, September 28, 2018 Blogger Kevin Wade Johnson had this to say...

Your suggestion makes perfect sense. While they're at it, can't they nominate a woman? Sexual assault and harassment allegations would be less likely, don't you think?

 

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Friday, September 21, 2018

Shaving in increments

Alex Trebek this week, shaving the beard despite its overwhelming fan support - his wife disliked it.

Monday he had the full beard. Tuesday it was a goatee. Wednesday, just the mustache. Thursday, clean shaven.

Kathie wondered if he'd come out Friday wearing a bald cap. Unfortunately, he didn't.

Monday


Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

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4 Comments:

At 5:58 PM, September 24, 2018 Anonymous Kathie had this to say...

"His wife disliked it."

Hmmm, sounds reasonable to me!

 
At 10:54 AM, October 01, 2018 Blogger Peter Threadgill had this to say...

but... but... they don't film shows daily, they film them in batches (presumably a week at a time). so does that mean he went to the bathroom between episodes to shave off a little more each time?

 
At 12:48 PM, October 01, 2018 Blogger The Ridger, FCD had this to say...

He must have!

 
At 12:53 PM, October 19, 2018 Anonymous Kathie had this to say...

"does that mean he went to the bathroom between episodes to shave off a little more each time?"

Why not? The show takes a break between each taping, during which Trebek and the returning champion clearly change clothes.

 

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Friday, September 14, 2018

Pretty brown bird

Here's a female House Finch. The first and third are the same bird, and probably the second is, too, as a pair breeds in the big box holly a little further down the house, but on the other hand there are several pairs that visit the feeders in the back, so maybe not. Beautiful bird in her patterned coat of brown, regardless.

female House Finch

female House Finch

female House Finch

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