21 November 2009

Daily Chat 21/11/09

Judas Maccabeus restored the temple in Jerusalem in 164 BC.  The Mayflower Compact, setting out the rules by which Plymouth Colony would be governed, was signed by 41 men in 1620.  The Verrazano Narrows Bridge opened in 1964.  It was the largest suspension bridge in the world at the time.  Bombs exploded in two pubs in Birmingham, killing 21 people, in 1974.

Born today:  Voltaire (1694-1778), René Magritte (1898-1967) and Björk.

It is World Hello Day.  Greet 10 people to promote peace and better communication.


  1. For those seeking to expand their French vulgar vernacular: "pipe" = "blowjob"
    The painting makes summat more sense on that basis...

  2. Bonjour!

    Guten Tag!

    (for our european friends)

  3. Ey up!

    (for our Yorkshire friends)

  4. Good evening UT, I've been lurking here for months. I've not been modded or banned from CiF, but i'm willing to sacrifice the apparent smidgeon of an agnostic soul that remains.Very much entertained by the comments which most often are better than the article itself. That is how I ended up here in a roundabout sort of way.Much enjoy the upbeat levity, joviality and slander that I read in this den of iniquity.Thanks to Montana for running a good little vibrant village here. And yes ,Montana, I think caribou barby is a skank.Anyway,just thought i would log in and say fit like.(Am transplanted from Aberdeen several score+ years ago.)Incidentally, in the jargon or venacular of the younger set; "polishing the chrome = blowjob.Sounds a bit 'victorian' but pleasant all the same.bye for now.B.

  5. ''Ceci n'est pas un pipe?''


    ''Ce n'est pas un poteau.''

    Please Miss B, could you correct my French Grammar?

  6. Am slowly making my way through the Tatchell thread and, yup, he's a treasure...

    (for all our classical friends)

  7. Oh and I do know a bit of Dutch so :

    Goedemorgen iedereen!

  8. Hola, Boudican!

    Your grace - you've got me there. "it is not a goalpost"? You still on about the Henry main man thing?

    Ah..."it is not a post". very good.

    I'd go with "ceci" ("this") for a proper sense of rebuttal.

    And "une annonce" would probably lessen the chance that people think you're talking about a flagpole...

    Incidentally, "les traitres au poteau!" is "death to the traitors!", which literally means "(send them) to the stake!" - thus reflecting, per Cpt Mainwaring, that they don't like it up 'em...

    Right, that's me French practice done for the day...

  9. Hello all and welcome to Boudican.

    Found this little site which has some lovely stuff on it. One here for you Montana - given your techie issues

  10. Madinn mhath guys and hi Boudican

    I knew a surrealist plumber once, or at least I assume he was a surrealist as you could hear his voice under the sink going 'this is not a pipe'.

  11. Merci beacoup Philippa,

    my problem came from 'post' as in posting on here.

    Do the french use 'franglais' for chatroom posting as in ''C'est ne pas un post''?

  12. and apropos of the recent successful firing up there's this one.

  13. Edwin,

    every plumber I've met is a surrealist.

    The charges on a plumbers bill are more surreal than Dali's Soft construction with boiled beans.

  14. your grace - sort of, but they have a rather defensive approach to the frencher end of the spectrum. both french teachers thus far have looked at me blankly when I referred to a "website", and could only be enlightened by a dictionary translating this as...


    Sometimes I think they refuse to understand me out of sheer bloodymindedness.

    Other times, due to my inept pronunciation and inability to remember how to construct the past conditional.

  15. Sheff - that's brilliant!

    Went to the Dali museum in Figueres in September. In crowd management terms, not the best idea to let a master surrealist design the building as well as the art...

  16. Shef that is so funny !

    Just read the last few comments from last night btw. Don't have many words for that, except... damn there are some pretty special people posting here occasionally. Must be the hostess :-)

    Anyways, off to an all day blues festival. Have a good one y'all.

  17. Morning all.

    Nice to see the sun shining here, even if it won't be for long. I am definitely a SAD person. I shall go out shopping later and park the car at the far end of town so I can have a good walk about in the sun.

    Welcome Boudican!

    As seems to be more and more usual for a Saturday, I've got work to do so I shall be popping in and out.

    Mark Lawson's thread is an interesting one today.

  18. Morning BB,

    just been looking at Hannan's thread. You know those Tories who really, really, REALLY give you the creeps?

    Those Tories who if you look deep into their eyes, you would find yourself being transported to a dark nihilist abyss with no hope of escape and which all hope is snuffed out for eternity?

    He's one of those.

  19. Bore da!

    Loved the LHC cartoon Sheff!

    BW agree about the end of yesterday's thread - very special - restores hope doesn't it?

  20. Oh dear, just been filling out the form for my oldest to start school next year. Can't believe how much it means to me that he goes to first choice school. Did not realise I would be like that.

    Horrible to imagine people sifting through applications and allocating schools for little ones who are only 3 now!

  21. Ahahahah!

    Who is posting as FourthSectorWayne?


  22. Haven't looked at Hannan's thread yet - largely because I think he is a repugnant little reptile. Will make another cup of tea, take a deep breath and enter the fray...

    And yes, forgot to say - that cartoon is great Sheff.

    Bore da, Anne! How is your house-moving going?

  23. Bit late for Helloing - but greetings all.

    BB - speaking in defence of reptiles - Your comment is a bit mean.

    L x

  24. Deth da, everybody! And welcome, Boudican!

    I've been wondering if my tech problems were due to the fact that my most recent free trial of security software expired the other day. I know I asked people back in May if they knew of any good free ones and a couple of people made suggestions, but I can't find where it was. So, seeking suggestions anew: Anyone know of any good, FREE security software?

    Enjoyed the cartoon, too, Sheff.

  25. True that leni

    Apologies to reptiles everywhere!

  26. Montana

    We use AVG - my hubby actually upgraded to the paid-for version a while back, but prior to that we always ran the free version and it was fine.

    Get it here: http://free.avg.com/gb-en/homepage

  27. Ithink I am right in saying that it was to the Maccabean brothers that God granted permission to kill the enemy on the Sabbath - the day of joyful rest.

    Religions are funny things ain't they ?

  28. Comments are closed on the WDYWTTA thread but they haven't opened up a new one?

    Good old Magicsparklefish, one of the radfems from Cath's blog, posted a sniffy response to my comment on labiaplasty. Apparently, it's offensive and shallow of me not to realise that what a woman or girl who has perfectly normal genitalia that she just doesn't think are quite perfect enough is suffering from 'body dysmorphia' that is brought on by those nasty men watching too much porn and getting unrealistic expectations of what women's genitals should look like.

    This procedure is apparently being done on girls as young as 10 years old. Just how much porn do you suppose 10 year old girls have seen? Giving insecurity a pretentious medical name doesn't make it a condition that merits surgery. Counselling is in order, not surgery.

    I grew up feeling like I was the ugliest girl on the planet. I had thick glasses, trying to correct the amblyopia that I was born with. I've got thick, coarse hair and my mother didn't want to hassle with it, so she kept my hair cut really short, at a time when long, straight hair was fashionable and I've always felt like my nose is too big. Kids at school used to make fun of me and tell me I was ugly and my mother also criticised my appearance a lot (she still was doing it, last time I spoke to her). I'm still pretty insecure, but I've at least come to realise that I'm not ugly.

    The problem is in these women's (and girls') minds, not their pants. The solution needs to be in their minds.

    The thing that REALLY irks me is knowing that Magicsparklefish would be one of the first ones screaming about FGM. How is labiaplasty any less wrong than FGM?

  29. The idea of labiaplasty is weird and somehow wrong. But the idea that women might be doing this because they think they aren't perfect as a result of seeing porn films is fukken ridiculous!

    I have no idea if my labia are normal or not - nobody has ever mentioned them. And I haven't seen very many lady-parts in real life to be able to compare and contrast. But it would never occur to me to have plastic surgery on my bits, ffs.

    I dunno. Too weird.

  30. Montana and BB

    Agree entirely - I'm becoming worried about the shape of my liver - it may be wrong - OMG - will I be ostrasized and laughed at.

    The aesthetics of the human body have now become so commercialised - we are creating more and more insecure people.

    The worst thing about it is that it confuses barbaric practices , such as FGM. with vanity surgery thus weakening the case of those who speak out against the former - it normalises it.

  31. Gilly Goulden here.

    Just had my first mouthful of this year's Beaujolais. Bloody lovely.

  32. BB

    The more I read this thread the more I realise it is peopled by the cultural cognoscenti - I'm impressed.

    Up in the hills of Wales we are still drinking home brew small beer and buttermilk.

  33. Leni
    The worst thing about it is that it confuses barbaric practices , such as FGM with vanity surgery thus weakening the case of those who speak out against the former - it normalises it.

    What a world! I hope nothing could normalise FGM, a grotesque practice.

    But there is something, arguably worse, about the extreme vanity of some people in the west who indulge in all kinds of cosmetic surgery when there's nothing wrong with them except their perceived lack of some manufactured notion of what physical beauty is.

  34. In honour of World Hello Day, let me start by saying "oright, mate" from the London branch.

    Special welcome to Boudican as it's their first time, and to Leni as I've not seen her (?) here before.

    Phillipa: I discovered the alternate meaning of "une pipe" some years ago when a friend of mine tried to acquire a small pipe suitable for smoking hash in in a small tabac in the depths of the French countryside.

    Naive Friend: "Bonjour Madame. Je voudrais une petite pipe, s'il vous plait..."

    Elderly French shopkeeper: "Quoi????"

    Naive Friend: "Pardonez moi, madame, I am stupid english who can't speak proper French, like"

    Unfortunately, my friend had to smoke his hash with tobacco in what I always thought was the normal way, in a joint

    We discovered a few days later from a French friend why we got such dirty looks...

  35. Hey andy - where have you been? Having a life I expect but its good to see you. Lots of new people on the UT which seems to be going from strength to strength. Famous last words of course. We haven't had a row for at least a fortnight so you're back just in time.

  36. Andy - one thing, we are now officially a cult that worships the Great Weed of Bitterness and the Fourthway Pathfinder. If you go back a couple of days BB outlined the prayers. Not a complex faith but periodic genuflections to BW and MF accompanied by spliffs and lager are required to maintain ones spiritual equilibrium.

  37. Evening, folks.

    And welcome back, andysays.

    Vile weather round my part of Yorkshire today. I wonder if deano's made it to The Messiah tonight?

  38. Evening all,

    one thing that's occured to me in the labiaplasty debate.

    If women are feeling the pressures of ''appearance'' due to porn, are there any statistics to show the amount of men getting todger extensions?

    After all, men probably watch about 97% more porn than women so therefore should feel much more pressure to become endowed like John Holmes?

  39. Hi sheff:

    Yeah, I've been attempting to have a life, with various degrees of success.

    How is everyone?

    Did I detect from BB's comment above that Anne has sold her house and is now moving?

    And I hope you're not suggesting that I'm likely to start a row.

    Mind you, as the statement at the top now says "I've never run away from an argument" rather than encouraging posters to play nice, maybe views on the desirability of rowing have changed recently...

  40. I don't think it's just porn - at least not directly. Two of my grandaughters aged 7 & 9 already seem to be aware of their appearance in a way that my daughters generation certainly weren't at that age. A kind of self consciousness i find a bit disconcerting.

    As to todger extensions - I wouldn't know although I never thought having a huge one was a particular advantage. Wouldn't most women prefer the imaginative use of a 'normal' or even smallish todger than the beating up of their internal organs by some massive instrument? could be wrong of course - i often am.

  41. Hey andysays

    Long time no read! How ya doing?

  42. w007!!!!

    Ireland 41 - 6 Fiji!

    Scotland 9 - 8 Oz!

    Wales 33 - 16 Argentina!

    England - er, a bit better than expected.

  43. thauma

    Rwgbi I assume. Wales won something? Wow.

  44. Sheff

    I heard a story once - a guy , unable all his his life to perform. had successful surgery. Overjoyed - he was killed by a bus the following day.

    Mind I heard the tale in L'pool so it may be apocryphal.

  45. Welcome to Boudican! Have I gathered correctly that you are US-based?


    Do the french use 'franglais' for chatroom posting as in ''C'est ne pas un post''?

    Puts me in mind of a transatlantic conference call I once had. Was in the US with French bloke sitting next to me, and some Americans, trying to explain a manufacturing simulation software bug to the progtrammer in France. One of the Yanks tried his best, but the programmer couldn't understand what was being said in English.

    So the French bloke translated. The funny part was that all the nouns were English words with a French accent, something vaguely like:

    C'est que le software ne reconnais pas la path du robot ni celle du weld gun et cela produit un fatal exception error et puis un core dump....

    Ah bon, je comprends parfaitement a dit le programmeur.

  46. Hi MsChin: how's your daughter doing at uni now?

    BB: I'm good, thanks. Hope you are too.

    13D: Yeah, I was wondering if I could get the NHS to pay for a little surgical enhancement in a vital area (not that I really need it, of course). Presumably if I argued that I've watched too much porn and I now feel I can't measure up in that department, I'd be "entitled".

    Seriously, there are a tiny number of people who suffer from body dysmorphia, but they don't need surgery, they need psychiatric treatment, in fact, if they really are affected by such a thing, no amount of surgery will ever be enough.

    Can anyone remember the story about Robert Mitchum's response to the studio exec who suggested he had cosmetic surgery on his nose?

  47. Hehehehehe- franglais rulez!

    Leni - I am not really posh, I just like wine. I used to live in France so there are certain rituals I look forward to, like the year's first Beaujolais. Yummy!

  48. This just annoyed me. Seems the New Athiests, predominantly Male and White (and middle-aged) notably Dawkins, Hitchens, Dennett are insufficiently aware of and amenable to ethnic and female athiests. I had a bit of sympathy given that..

    a)they are likely to have suffered the negative effects of religion far more than middle aged white males.

    b) Religion has often had a major role in emancipation ie. slavery/ US civil rights/ with the result that eg. a black American rejecting religion is likely to feel an additional pang of 'betrayal' or ingratitude.

    c) All the big atheist sellers do indeed seem to be male..Dawkins, Hitchens, Dennett, Harris..(dunno if "Ayaan Hirsi Ali" is actually atheist or a bestseller)

    BUT then I read it and really it's just a bit of outrageous narcissism. The interviewee is a committed athiest but hasn't done much more than look at atheism, thought "what can I contribute?" and arrived at the answer: My identity.

    And so, Atheism gets the fill-on bullshit, post-structuralist, identity treatment...

    "Hence, the European- American atheist community can't be truly inclusive unless there is some recognition of how privilege and positionality undergird the very articulation of atheism as an ideological space that empowers white folk to deconstruct the cultural tethers of organized religion, without having their authorial right to do so be questioned."

    Thing is..somewhere in there is probably a good point waiting to be made but that's hard to do when your thoughts contain concepts such as 'ideological space' and 'positionality'.

    Anyway..I'm off to the pub to watch X Factor.

  49. thaumaturge,

    just reading your franglais out loud in a 'Pepe le pew' accent. Most amusing.


    it sounds like they've been on the postmodernist generator which churns up postmodernist guff with every refresh.


    yeah it occured to me that if women are under pressure to get labia surgery then surely there must be loads of men out there feeling inadequate. This is not a cry for help incidentally.....

  50. Working my way through the thread - havent read the end of yesterday's yet although it sounds interesting!

    Montana - the labiaplasty thing is just ... words fail me. Having only watched one porno in my life, and having found it a source of great amusement rather than erotica, I cannot say that I've ever compared my bits with with any other woman's and found them wanting. Or compared at all, actually. WTF?!

    I've got loads of rather unruly hair too, but some blokes have been kind enough to say that they like it that way.

  51. BB - Beaujolais Nouveau is an affront unto the name of red wine. Heretic, I banish you!


    Up in the hills of Wales we are still drinking home brew small beer and buttermilk.

    Nothing wrong with the hills of Wales: lovely, they are! It's the falis you have to watch out for. ;-)

    Hi Andy - nice to see you around!

    A couple of funny stories of mistranslations:

    French friend of mine, who had lived many years in the US, went into the depths of the French countryside to visit an aged aunt. The aunt asked, "What do you find different over there?" My friend (thinking of food), said: "On utilise beaucoup de préservatifs" ("they use a lot of preservatives"). Apparently in French, préservatifs means condoms....

    Me, having just arrived in Buenos Aires with my Argentine friend (must remind her of the rugby results), thirsty as hell after about 24 hours of travelling and encountering a heatwave in December. I spot a kiosk and ask my friend to go and buy me a bottle of water. She says, buy your own, your Spanish is good enough.


    I walk in, find a bottle of water, and try to ask how much it is. "Cuánto cuesto?" I ask innocently. The shopkeeper starts laughing and rapid-firing incomprehensible Spanish at me. Eventually I manage to effect the sale, but I go out and tell my mate about it. When she makes me repeat what I'd said, she also falls about the place laughing.

    What I *should* have said is, cuánto cuesta? What I *did* say means, "How much do I cost?"

  52. Hi thauma. Did you and Hank ever decide which of your favourite games was more authentically working class? (crouches to avoid various hurled objects)

    monkey: you got that out of pseuds’ corner, right?

    If not, send it in in time for the next issue of Private Eye.

    And surely the “European- American atheist community”, if such a thing exists, doesn’t have to be inclusive. It explicitly excludes anyone who isn’t a European- American atheist.

    Even the atheists are riven by sectarianism

    Next someone will suggest that the BNP ought to allow black people to join, cos it’s, like, sooo unfair…

    Oh yeah, make sure you find the appropriate positionality at the bar when you're down the pub. If you don't get the best ideological space, you won't have a view of the telly and you'll miss X Factor.

    13D: I think we could be on to a nice little source of income here, mate.

    We should set up a self-help group for male victims of pornography who have become unable to cope in today’s hyper-sexualised society and therefore need funding to build our own support network.

    I don’t want to make light of what are actually serious issues here, even though I suspect they’re blown out of proportion for the sake of furthering an agenda and generating pseudo-debate, but I am, yet again, astounded that there is so much bullshit now passing for informed comment and opinion.

    It’s good to be back…

  53. Hehehehe - excellent.

    Oi, anyway! I like beaj nouveau!

    Reminds me of when we were in Berlin when I was a teenager and my mum went to the market and asked for a kilo of apes...

    The best one was in the butchers, though. So much pork in Germany, and mum really fancied a leg of lamb but had no idea how to ask for it, so my brother, sister and I ran out of the shop and hid in disgust as my mother was pointing to her leg and going "Baaaaa! BAAAAAA!".

    She was an awesome woman. :o)

  54. And, returning to the labia discussion earlier, you can get a rather rude T shirt here.

    The T shirt shares its name with Kizbot's cat, oddly enough.

  55. BB: nice story.

    Animals in different countries make different noises though, don’t they? – or the human version of what they sound like is different in different languages – you know what I mean.

    Does anyone know what the German version of a sheep sound is?

  56. Leni - yes indeed, the glorious game that is rugby. Don't be so dismissive of Wales; they are generally a great side although my Welsh mates tonight weren't too impressed with the result despite the score. Roll on Six Nations she says, rubbing her hands. (Although I'm a bit worried about the French and then the Scots are looking rather resurgent.)

    MF - are you reacting to anything in particular?

    Andy - Hank and I (and Jay and others) haven't quite settled the class dynamics of various ball-related sports, but we have got him to admit that he supports Wales over England in rugby, so that's a start.

    BB - :-D - I don't get the 'kilo of apes' bit though - please explain!

  57. MsC: so what are you doing in the Twisted Mythology God Shop?

    This suggests a side of you I don’t think you’ve revealed before. Does this mean you’re not a member of the atheist community, of whatever nationality/ethnic origin/blah blah blah?

    Thauma: please don’t go too far down the ape road. You’ll only encourage Reilly and his chimpist comments again (sigh…)

  58. Awright, have just polished off current bottle orf wine. Do I open another one, or are you lot not up for the onslaught?

    (Not that I plan to *finish* the next one, you understand.)

  59. Chimpist comments, Andy? Refresh my memory, because I am sure they were amusing.

  60. Apes in German are Affen (not sure of the spelling), whereas apples are Apfeln.

    Hehehe - like the Sheela Na Gig t-shirt tho.

  61. BB

    I have nothing against 'posh' - I don't really have an 'ideological space' or if I do if very permeable. I just like people - even the oddest ones are interesting - some I admit hold a horrible facination for me as I wonder just how they can live with themselves. These types exist cross class and cross culture.


    I'm not a follower of the rwgbi - I can usually tell when Wales have won by the hi jinks in the village. Nowt so daft as a happy Welshman.

    I used to follow rugby league when I lived up north - seemed a faster game - not so much hugging and huddling.

  62. Is there an atheist 'community' - they often seem to disagree as often as the theists. Never sure how you can disagree about something you say isn't there.

    Animal noises - birds sing with regional accents - but can adapt if they move to new location.

  63. Leni - have barely watched any RL but am a huge fan of RU. My bloke is Welsh and I do try to keep him happy. ;-)

    Except of course when Wales are playing Ireland.

  64. MsChin,

    further to the PJ Harvey T-shirt, here's L7 showing their erm, wares, at the end of their infamous performance on 'The Word'.

  65. Duke

    I am soooo disappointed.

    I misread 'L7' as 'LZ' and was hoping to see a bit of prime-time Robert Plant.

  66. andysays

    Yeah, I quite like mythology, but I was actually looking for the Sheela Na wotsit image. It seemed apt, given the debate re: body morphism and 'labia are horrid, one must surgically erase them'.

    And while I'm on the subject of the divine female body, here's another one

    thauma & BB

    You pair of old soaks .. have one for me, as I'm past it these days.

  67. Sorry, thauma, it’s pretty much ancient history by now. Just a running joke I had with Jay on CiF for a few days following a comment of his I pretended to find offensive because it was derogatory to chimps.

    And I for one will be off to bed when I’ve finished my current glass of wine (a rather pleasant Cotes du Rhone, actually) as I’ve got to be up early to carry on constructing a rabbit proof fence to protect my Dad’s vegetable garden.

    So don’t expect me to keep you company through the next bottle, but don’t not open it on my account either.


    “Never sure how you can disagree about something you say isn't there”

    If you’ve knocked about CiF for any length time you should surely have realised that people can disagree about pretty much anything.

    For starters, there’s the nature of the thing that isn’t there, and the implications of its not-thereness, and I believe the current hot-topic is whether or not to continue fighting for equal representation on Thought for the Day.

    Of course the majority of us atheists just say

    “There probably isn’t a god; now stop making such a fuss about it and get a bloody life”

    And of course, anyone who disagrees with me will be excommunicated…

  68. Andy - too late, I've now opened a rather nice Portuguese bottle. But I'm only doing it for MsChin.

  69. Andysays

    Much of the inter atheist argument seems to be about flaunting a superior vocabulary to describe something they all agree isn't there/

  70. Leni - have just read the end of yesterday's thread and I think you are a herione.

  71. Btw, I'd always parsed your Cif username as "a fancy doggie", but I saw from a recent post that I'd got that wrong!

  72. thauma

    Thanks - but not heroic at all - he was just a kid.

    I knew a vietnamese woman - rescued by the Sibonga - she had a daughter and 2 older sons. She had been widowed. Sons seemed older than they claimed - as I got to know them better they told me they had lied about their age as they wanted English education (sensible boys). I asked them where they were born - smiling silence followed by a laugh - 'On the Sibonga' they told me. Both orphaned they had been 'adopted' by Phuong as she realised they had better chance in a family.

    Eventually I learned the whole story - the boys were N viet (ethnic Chinese who were persected ) Phuong from south and Viet. This little,frightened uneducated woman really did give them a new life.

    Many similar stories from refugees - when really up against it people can do amazing things.

  73. Leni - great story and incredible bravery. I don't think yours is any less: what you have done is something I could not do.

  74. I'll second that - just read it. Leni, you are a star. :o)

  75. Gah - 'heroine', even. I hate it when I commit typos.

    But I still stand by the term!

  76. X Factor was top notch family enertainment since none of you are likely to ask..


    "MF - are you reacting to anything in particular?"

    Yep..the notion that anything is fair game for an injection of identity based special pleading...sorry, I'll rephrase that..

    "..the accommodatory potentiality of any open ideological space to perspectives of a ethno-gendered-cultural specficity.."

    It's about fuckin atheism...the idea that at present all we are given is the white male version is not at all persuasive as far as I'm concerned..any more than that's the case with science, climate change or football. She just doesn't make that case at all. It seems a case of "I'm an atheist..why haven't I got a publisher..I'll do the black feminist angle". That didn't seem to have too many takers so she goes down the "My black female angle is being suppressed by white male exceptionalism" route.


    "Never sure how you can disagree about something you say isn't there."

    Oh come off it. What do you think of Ulysses? I've never been a big fan of personally but the cut-throat rivalry between Joycean scholars has to be seen to be believed despite the fictional status of Leopold Bloom. Your take would be?...but he's not even real?

    And "there" or not, the various deities (however you view their existential status) have, over the millenia had much influence on the lives of all mankind.

    The disagreements tend to be more over the extent to which those who do think something's there need to be challenged over their presumption in foisting the 'consequences' of their beliefs on the wider world.

    Oh yeah...

    "Mind I heard the tale in L'pool so it may be apocryphal."

    I know you're new here but generally we tend to eschew the wilder varieties of 'racial' stereotyping. Also..what if I agreed with your characterisation and stated "all Liverpudlians are liars"..you'd have a classical paradox on your hands..or does that only work with Cretans d'you reckon?

  77. Hllo MF

    Don't snarl. I was refering to Scouse humour. I once heard the mayor of Bootle recount a tale -

    The council was considering building a new urinal. One councillor stood and said ' Why don't we go the whole hog and build an arsenal'? Do you reckon this was a true story?

    Leopold Bloom did - and still does - exist within the pages of a book. Fictional characters do exist - just in a different way.

    the non existent god does not exist within a non existent space.

    PS - I was born in Liverpool, went to school there so I know scouse outrage when I meet it it.

    L x

  78. Watching Rebus at the moment MF. I don't have anything against family entertainment, but I like a bit of escapism, a story I can get lost in, rather than reality/talent shows and the like.

  79. Leni: it’s all about how many non-existent angels you can fit on the head of a non-existent pin.

    And after reading yesterday’s closing comments, welcome again to Untrusted. Another heart warming story – it’s good to be reminded there are still people like you about.

    monkey: I can’t remember exactly what the apparent flaw in your reasoning is called, but

    "I heard the tale in L'pool so it may be apocryphal"

    Doesn’t quite equate to:

    "all Liverpudlians are liars"

    Whatever happened to the much-talked about Liverpudlian sense of humour?

    Next you’ll be asking that the open ideological space of Untrusted takes special compensatory measures to accommodate your white male scouse specificity ;-)

  80. MF

    It's about fuckin atheism...the idea that at present all we are given is the white male version is not at all persuasive as far as I'm concerned..any more than that's the case with science, climate change or football. She just doesn't make that case at all. It seems a case of "I'm an atheist..why haven't I got a publisher..I'll do the black feminist angle".

    Must have missed something somewhere because I don't know who the 'she' is that you're referring to.

    But yeah - it's never occurred to me that atheism is a white male concern. It's a 'rational person' concern to me.

  81. In fact, the idea that 'not believing in gods' is a white male privilege is ludicrous on the face of it.

    But please lay off Leni because I think she's done more for social justice in a very practical way than ... well, me, for instance.

  82. I'm guessing whoever it was that made these statements was American? (If you could give us a link or a URL, MF?) Everything is the fault of white men, Monkeyfish -- haven't you learned that by now? ;-)

    I can't figure out how being a black female atheist is much different from being a white male atheist, apart from the being black and female bit. If you get my drift... I mean, how many different ways are there to not believe something and what does skin colour or sex have to do with it?

    But we've already learned today that I'm shallow because I don't think it's okay to cut up a woman's genitals just because she's insecure. I keep forgetting to blame men for everything. Damn. Bad feminist, Montana. Bad feminist!

  83. LOL @ the postmodernist generator! Wonderful!

    Somehow it reminded me of this:

    Why did the chicken cross the road?
    Arthur Andersen Consultant's Answer:

    Deregulation of the chicken's side of the road was threatening its dominant market position. The chicken was faced with significant
    challenges to create and develop the competencies required for the newly competitive market.

    Andersen Consulting, in a partnering relationship with the client, helped the chicken by rethinking its physical distribution strategy and implementation processes.

    Using the Poultry Integration Model (PIM), Andersen helped the chicken use its skills, methodologies, knowledge, capital and experiences to align the chicken’s people, processes and technology in support of its overall strategy within a Program Management framework.

    Andersen Consulting convened a diverse cross-spectrum of road analysts and best chickens along with Anderson consultants with deep skills in the transportation industry to engage in a two-day itinerary of meetings in order to leverage their personal knowledge capital, both tacit and explicit, and to enable them to synergize with each other in order to achieve the implicit goals of delivering and successfully architecting and implementing an enterprise-wide value framework across the continuum of poultry cross-median processes.

    The meeting was held in a park-like setting, enabling and creating an impact environment which was strategically based, industry-focused, and built upon a consistent, clear, and unified market message and aligned with the chicken’s mission, vision, and core values. This was conducive towards the creation of a total business integration solution.

    Andersen Consulting helped the chicken change to become more successful.

  84. thaum

    The She is the woman being interviewed in the link I forgot to post..


    "But please lay off Leni because I think she's done more for social justice in a very practical way than ... well, me, for instance."

    Well OK, but I wasn't aware I was having a go. She seemed to be looking for a theological debate earlier..I was just chipping in with a few pertinent contributions.


    "the non existent god does not exist within a non existent space."

    Is this a haiku? I'll respond anyway..

    Supposing that non existent entities require a space, either spatio-temporal, conceptual or metaphorical, in which to manifest their non-existence seems to me to be investing them with attributes to which the fact of their non-existence renders them unqualified. Deciding that particular non-existent entities, by virtue of their invention or conceptualisation, take on a markedly different set of attributes (notably some different sense of 'existence') is a shaky doctrine since we can bring them into being at will with a minimal degree of mental activity. Stating that fictional characters 'exist' says little more than "human beings have imagination". The fact that some achieve greater prominence than others; some even influencing human intercourse and events is purely a question of the degree of the dissemination of the entity's significance.


    "the non existent god does not exist (tautologous..but so far so good)... within a non existent space (or indeed without.. since how can a non-existent space be demarcated in such a way that within or without are in any way meaningful)"

    I'm not outraged btw...dunno why you got that impression. I tend to sound outraged when I'm outraged.

  85. annetan

    Hi - Before I knew your name was Tanner I thought of you as 'fiery Anne'

  86. andy

    #monkey: I can’t remember exactly what the apparent flaw in your reasoning is called...#

    It's not a flaw. It's called "poetic induction".

    "Whatever happened to the much-talked about Liverpudlian sense of humour?"

    What, that legendary quality that spawned such legends as Jimmy Tarbuck and Stan Boardman? I think the least said the better myself. If you mean the hard-faced, cynical, sarcasm, I think you'll find it's very much alive and kicking.

  87. Hi Leni why fiery?

    and why has my surname dampened it? ;)

  88. Fuck me, MF, just got back from Boro, and it's every bit as bad as you suggested. Cold, wet, and feeling robbed to only get a point.

    "poetic induction"...yep, the talk was of nothing else in the pubs around the Riverside.

    Good to see you again, andy.

  89. Anetan

    Welsh fire - tan - can't accent but imagine circumflex.

    still think you're feisty - don't worry you haven't gone down at all in my estimation.

  90. Not a good football day for either of you, eh, Hank?

  91. Hank

    Shoulda said. I could have given you a tour of the good bits...I had a spare 10 minutes earlier.
    It's fuckin dire isn't it? But, strangely enough..it can grow on you...and the chances of developing a pretentious bourgeois outlook are minimal.

  92. @MH - genital reconstruction...Well, you're forgiven for not knowing this but here in the UK, the Saatchis ran a campaign on this some years back..

    New Labia, New Danger.

    The mistake we made was to dismiss them and their Tory mates as a bunch of old cunts, and not realise that Blair was simply leading a bunch of new cunts.

  93. MF

    The nonexistence gods clearly require a space in which to manifest their non existence in order to generate discussion around their non existence. Do they exist as something other than a negation of the existent god or do we conclude that the non existent does in fact exist?

    Fictional characters exist as positive creations of a writer which is confirmed by their recognition and acceptance by the reader and those who discuss them.

    Do fictional caracters and non existence gods come into being by the very fact that we discuss them and therefore recognise their validity.

  94. I was on driving duty today, MF. If not, I'd have got in touch about having a beer or two after the game.

    Not sure when we are at the cathedral of the Geordie Nation. Maybe we could meet up for a beer then....

    "Not a good football day", MH? Frustrating. Played well, and should have won. Still unbeaten away from home, but that's 2 wins and 7 draws. Still, could be worse. Says Hank, speaking from bitter experience.

  95. Sorry, Montana, dunno who MH is. You're MW, yeh?

  96. Morning all.
    annetan, good stuff! I think I was in that Arthur Andersen consultation meeting - that would certainly explain the utter nonsense I've been writing in business reports over the years.

    Hank, Middlesbrough... best seen through the rear-view mirror. Places around it are nice, though. If you want grim, have you ever been to Warrington or Skelmersdale?

    Me, I still miss living in Beeston.

  97. #Do they exist as something other than a negation of the existent god or do we conclude that the non existent does in fact exist?#

    Nope, we conclude that we cannot meaningfully speak of non-existent entities except as convenient myths. Some, such as numbers or scientific theories are especially useful in practical ways and some are useful in clarifying general concepts or moral sentiments eg. The good Samaritan or Schrodinger's cat. But none are worth the sort of sacrifices and anxieties which non-existent deities seem to produce.

    #Fictional characters exist as positive creations of a writer which is confirmed by their recognition and acceptance by the reader and those who discuss them.#

    Well yeah, but the acceptance and discussion are merely arbitrary and contingent. A different set of circumstances or a less prescient publisher might have left Madame Bovary effectively non-existent. If I now invent some fictional entity, say "the four sided triangular keyring in my pocket", in what sense does it come into existence? And what of the fact that it is not only non-existent but non-actualisable...does that give it an additional level of non-existence? And if this blog suddenly achieved world-wide attention and my keyring took on some sort of legendary mythical status, would that again alter its existential type?

    I think it would remain a convenient myth brought into being to help clarify an idea.

    #Do fictional caracters and non existence gods come into being by the very fact that we discuss them and therefore recognise their validity.#

    Only if you buy the "Well, if X doesn't exist then how can we talk about it" argument. It's a problem of vocabulary as much as anything else and especially the difference between existence and subsistence.

    Anyway, I'm off to say my prayers and go to bed.

  98. Beeston's good, Habib. The Beeston 14 pub crawl, Charlie's Barn on a Tuesday night when snakebite was 50p a pint.

    All these years later, it's still a good night out. I saw Edwin Starr play his last ever gig at Beeston Social. Him, three backing singers, a full horn section on a tiny stage, and no more than 200 punters in the club. He was dead three days later.

    I like to think he went out on a high.

  99. Well, unless the 'wild' is a prefix, like 'van' or 'ten' in Dutch names, I would think that I'm MW. I answer to both -- you're not the only person who does that.

    Seven draws is better than seven losses.

  100. Do you know the White Lion on Staion Road, Hank? Because I've got a fairly embarrassing story to tell you, if you do.

  101. Hello thaumaturge, how are you? I live on the west coast of Vancouver Island in a town called Gold River.pop.-1500. Was it my manner of speech which prompted your question.you do know that it will take me weeks to get over being possibly called Amurkin? :) I do weekend and holiday in the U.S. from time to time.Born in Aberdeen,now a proud naturalized Canadian. BB- hi, I am enjoying a glass of lustily bodied shiraz.PFG! bye for now.

  102. "Seven draws is better than seven losses" - yup. Four wins and three defeats would be better than seven draws though.

    Ah well, off to bed now, Montana van Wildhack, before we get embroiled in arguments about the provenance of Vennegor of Hesselink, not to mention jokes about how Iowegians think that Hertz van Rental is a Dutch painter.

    Nite all (-:

    Nite, MW xx

  103. Hi Hank, in this modern era 3 wins from 7 would be better than 7 draws as well. I like the one about the painter and will plagiarize immediately. Thanks and goodnight.

  104. Leni - oh right - got you! I am welsh but married an Englishman, which isn't necessarily a bad thing - just was in this case :(