Monday, July 31, 2006

View From A Mudhole

So we were awakened from our nap by a Hellacious Thunderstorm...


The rain was coming down as hard as I've ever seen it. Kate and I, being alone for the week with Ruthie et al out of town, decided to take the mature, respectable, intelligent course.

We seized the day.

Out into a driving downpour, clad in our underwear, squealing like a pair of six year olds, we bolted out the back door and reveled in the deluge from the blackened sky. It was delicious and magnificent. We spread our arms and raised our faces, and nearly drowned in the warm flood. It was strangely serene, in its odd little way.

At least until I got whacked across the back with a huge wad of mud, that is. I spun around to see my dear love Kate, bent over and grabbing another pair of fists full of mud, preparing for a second volley.

I don't take such things lying down.

I did the only thing I could. I charged. She got me again, but I got her better. She was on her butt before she could even think about shot number three.

Then I did the single dumbest thing I could have. I attempted to swan dive on top of her, with the intent of rubbing her face in the mud.

I guess I forgot about that whole Marine Corps thing. I did manage to hook my finger in her bra strap. Which broke. It was an accident, I swear. And it was just the clasp on the shoulder strap, it's not like I broke the actual bra.

In a fit of faux rage Kate, who is apparently called corporal for more than just military reasons, thought I should be...um... corrected. I thought otherwise, and things sort of got slippery, and muddy, and really really fun. By the time the rain began to let up, we were exhausted and covered from head to toe in nothing but the back yard. And we had at some point aquired an audience consisting of the neighbor couple who just moved in next door a few weeks ago. I guess they heard all the ruckus and decided to peek over the fence to see what was up. Whoops.

Well not whoops too bad. The lady asked if it was a private party, or if anyone could join in. Kate, without missing a beat, yells "you're overdressed", so the lady started to correct this little deficiency. I like her already. Her husband/boyfriend stopped her, though. She did everything she could to talk her "man" into hopping into the mudhole with us. He apparently has a problem with naked, muddy girls, I guess. He wouldn't do it, and I think she's mad at him. He's a poop. It's not like we were having sex. It was just naked mud wrestling. Good clean fun, you might say.

Anyways, we're back in, and showered again, and back in clean underwear.

If you're ever awakened from a nap by a thunderstorm on a hot summer day, take my advice. Be young. Be fun.

Seize the day.

15 Eloquent Orations

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What is Science?

Immediately following our oh-so-lovely shower, Kate suggested that I perhaps start at the beginning.


Chapter One, Page One

What is Science? As I currently understand it, science is about figuring out. About explaining.

We see something, we naturally want to know what it is, where it came from, where it's going, and how it affects us in its passing. Science is about answering these questions.

My darling Kate has been quite adamant about the idea that science is not about knowing, per se. It's more about understanding better. She's been educating me on the difference between a theory (as used by the general public), a Theory (as used by science), and a fact.

theory - guess

Theory - expanation of something observed, back up by facts, subject to change as more accurate facts appear or are discovered

fact - 2+2=4. 2+2=4 is true today, it was true yesterday, and it will be true ten thousand years from now

For an example:

Observation - There is a Snuffleupagus in our driveway.

fact - All previously observed Snuffleupagi have been either in or from Snuffleupagusland.

theory - The Snuffleupagus came from Snuffleupagusland.

hypothesis - The Snuffleupagus in our driveway appears to be similar to all other previously observed Snuffleupagi, and therefore may have come from Snuffleupagusland. Further observation and/or testing is necessary to confirm or refute this.

Testing phase - where we attempt to confirm or refute our hypothesis. We could start by asking the Snuffleupagus where he's from. His answer is that indeed, he flew on a C-141 Starlifter straight from Snuffleupagusland International Airport to Albert J. Ellis airport in Jacksonville, NC.

Theory - As all previously observed Snuffleupagi have been either in or from Snuffleupagusland, the Snuffleupagus himself gives us compelling support for our hypothesis, and no current information contradicts our hypothesis, we can say for the moment that the Snuffleupagus probably originated in Snuffleupagusland, but future observations may cause us to alter or abandon this theory.

Sometime later, we travel to Albert J. Ellis airport for a flight to Cancun, Mexico for some nude sunbathing. When we enter the airport and talk to Isabel, the lady behind the counter (who is very sexy, and has great hair), she chuckles. "Take a look out the window at that inky dinky runway. We only fly to Charlotte NC and back in little teeny tiny planes. We have one small jet that makes a shuttle run to Philadelphia International once a week, but that's all we can handle with our inky dinky runway."

Thinking back to the Snuffleupagus, we of course ask the question...

"What about the C-141 back and forth to Snuffleupagusland?"

In a fit of uproarious laughter, Isabel shows us a picture of a C-141 Starlifter. "First of all," says she, "a C-141 Starlifter is a military jet. It would have no business at a civilian airport. Second of all, look how big that sucker is. Our runway isn't even wide enough for something like that to taxi, let alone long enough for it to execute a takeoff or landing."

Our next hypothesis and investigation may involve Snuffleupagi and honesty, but for now, let's go back and re-visit our original theory.

We now have reason to suspect a problem with our "Theory on the Origins of the Snuffleupagus in Our Driveway". We won't throw it out just yet, but we need to go back and investigate the discrepancy.

Did Isabel lie? Did Mr. Snuffleupagus? Did we perhaps misunderstand Mr. Snuffleupagus' testimony? Is Mr. Snuffleupagus really a Snuffleupagus? Could he be an abnormally large anteater impersonating a Snuffleupagus? Perhaps Mr. Snuffleupagus is a different, rare species of Snuffleupagus, the heretofore only rumored Small Penis Forked Tongue Snuffleupagus, snuffleupagus javisonadus.

We need to go back and do more research. After Cancun, of course. And a private drink or two at Isabel's apartment.

How am I doing so far?


61 Eloquent Orations

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Sunday, July 30, 2006

The Big Green Marker

Is everyone else enjoying it as much as we are?


Ok, I suppose that banned commenters aren't so fond of it, but hey, what do we care? They're banned.

Kate and I have been putting our heads together to come up with creative ways to abuse Javison, and I think we've done OK. He must not really mind, because he keeps coming back for more.

Isn't there a word for having a penchant for being abused? Oh yeah, masochism.

I actually started out the day trying to get this top ten commenters thing to work, but Dohn Asswipe Javison kept interupting me with inanities. Sorry 'bout not really having anything to post today. Turns out that top ten thing isn't integratable in a Blogger blog.

Well, I hope that the Big Green Marker at least entertained you all. Otherwise, the whole day was wasted.

Oh, except for when Lifewish gave us the link to the dancing and sex paper. That would have been cool if we could have concentrated on it without having to keep one eye on the blog-o-meter, looking for visits from the tin-foil hat man.

Is anyone else hearing 1939 croonings of Ray Bolger, while actually visualizing Jack Haley?

15 Eloquent Orations

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Saturday, July 29, 2006

Shooting Yourself In The Foot

Over at Fundy Central, Little Billy D pulls an O'Leary.


"Youth — the key to unseating Darwinian materialism

Check out this forthcoming book, in which I understand that our very own Sal Cordova is featured. Note especially Sam Harris’s blurb — with people like Harris expressing such foreboding, one has to wonder how close we are to seeing the Darwinian house of cards collapse under the weight of its self-delusion."

The forthcoming book about which he's blathering can be found at Amazon. It's called Righteous: Dispatches from the Evangelical Youth Movement it's by Lauren Sandler, and its scheduled release is September 7, 2006.

It's apparently an in depth look at the fundy youth movement. After his salivating comments above about the upcoming release of this book, he does a wholesale copy and paste of the book review section of the Amazon page.

Now, reading his comments above, you might be tempted to think of this book as praise for the right wing fundy Christian movement. However, if you actually READ the reviews that he so flagarently slopped all over his post, you see a bit of a different timbre to the book.
“Lauren Sandler obliterates the naïve and complacent hope that keeps most secularists and religious moderates sleeping peacefully each night-the hope that, in 21st century America, the young know better than to adopt the lunatic religious certainties of a prior age. The young do not know better. In their schools, skate-parks, rock concerts, and in the ranks of our nation’s military, our children are gleefully preparing a bright future of ignorance and religious fascism for us all. If you have any doubt that there is a culture war that must be waged and won by secularists in America, read this book.”
—Sam Harris, author of The End of Faith and Letter to a Christian Nation

“Lauren Sandler has traveled among the believers and returned with a story that alarms, informs, and enlightens. She reveals the rise of a fundamentalist-style youth movement that has replaced faith with closed-minded certainty and is frighteningly cult-like. Read this book and you will understand this Disciple Generation and the challenge it poses to a civil society.”
—Michael D’Antonio, former Newsday religion writer and author of Fall From Grace and Heaven on Earth

“Righteous is the most adroit and fascinating examination of a great national ill, the muddling of faith and politics, the secular and the divine.”
—Brad Land, author of Goat

It seems to me that none of the above quotes are really positive towards the movement, only toward the book itself, and its expose of the movement.

Is it just me, or does anyone else get the impression that Dr. Doolittle-to-nothing forgot to actually read the reviews before he pasted them on his blog?

And given the topic of the book, what exactly does it have to do with science and ID? Unless, of course, ID is about religion, and not at all about science?

If this is his idea of promoting good science, it's no wonder ID can't get a place at the table.

76 Eloquent Orations

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Davison vs. Godzilla

As promised at John A. Davison's Single Post Blog, one thread for him to take all the cheap shots he wants at MorphoDyke.


Fair warning, John. One out-of-the-way comment about Dave or any of our other commenters here, you're out the door.

And no one else can take shots at Davison in this thread until and unless he misbehaves... We're all about being fair here. Mostly.

Take it away, John.

[EDIT: John couldn't behave, it's now open season. Knock yourselves out.]

28 Eloquent Orations

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Friday, July 28, 2006

The Smilie Thread

Here's the list.


Ok, first of all a warning. My "recent comments" script can't digest the smilies, so don't put them close to the top of your comment. Blank lines and spaces don't help, because they apparently get stripped out.

So PLEASE MAKE SURE YOU HAVE A FEW LINES OF TEXT BEFORE YOU INSERT ANY SMILIES!

Thanks.

Ok remove the spaces from any of the following, and you'll get the smilie you see next to it.

; ) -- ;)
; - ) -- ;-)
: D -- :D
: - D -- :-D
: B ) -- :B)
: B - ) -- :B-)
: x -- :x
: X -- :X
: - x -- :-x
: - X -- :-X
: - ( -- :-(
: ( -- :(
: o -- :o
: O -- :O
: - o -- :-o
: - O -- :-O
: p -- :p
: P -- :P
: - p -- :-p
: - P -- :-P
: ) -- :)
: - ) -- :-)
: - k -- :-k
: - K -- :-K
: R O F L M A O -- :ROFLMAO
: L O L -- :LOL
; p i r a t e : -- ;pirate:

If there are any you'd care to have added, let me know. I'll be adding from time to time as I feel like it.

(Thanks go to BestSmileys.com where I got most of these, and where most of them are hosted.)


12 Eloquent Orations

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What Happens When You Put An Idiot In Charge?

This, apparently.


MorphoDyke blathers on and on about "Darwinism" and evidence, and whatnot.

After all that, I was left wondering, "What the Hell is your point, Freakshow?"

A whole page of yacking, yet she never really said anything...

Unless you take all that and reduce its complexity to "Darwinism is dead".

Evidence, anyone? Some science, perhaps?

Nope, just a propoganda piece. "We got us 600 engineers." That's it.

What a truly crappy piece of writing. Some journalist.

I did pick out one quote that I want to look at. Part of it, anyway.

The most common argument I hear for Darwinism - the absolutely darling must-have story in the pop sci media - is “We have found evidence for Darwinism!

We found it - in the eye of a fly - in the butt of an extinct anteater - in the lies guys tell about sex.” And we have more, too! Watch this space!”

The fatal problem, as any journalist knows, is: An apparently convincing case can be constructed if the only requirement is to assemble evidence for one’s own position. The case can then be aced by bullying anyone who knows contrary evidence into silence.


Let's leave aside the whole journalist thing, and how she might have any idea of what a journalist may or may not know. Anyone with a brain can see she's no journalist. "I knew Jack Journalist, MorphoDyke, and you're no Jack Journalist."

Let's also leave aside her attack on "Darwinism". (I know you guys don't like that term and why, so I try not to use it myself.) It is interesting to note however, that she's bitching about evidence while presenting exactly none of her own. But I digress.

I'm going to skip the fly eye, and only correct one little thing about the butt. If she knew anything at all about biology, she would know that butt belonged not to an extinct anteater, but to the common Snuffleupagus. Idiot.

Which leaves us with one little phrase in this huge pile of dung.

"the lies guys tell about sex."

Now see, this would be an interesting way to start our Science Friday. Do guys lie about sex? Why? How? Do they lie to the person in their bed, or just to their friends ABOUT the person in their bed? Do they lie about themselves? Before the deed, or after? What about girls? Samey same? What effect does sexual preference (or lack thereof) have on the behavior?

See, THESE things would be worth a real journalist's time to investigate. This stuff would be worth tracking down some scientists. Lay some source material on me, boys. I'm going to do a little investigative reporting here, and I'm starting with an experiment.

Oh, Kate? Are you busy at the moment Darling?



25 Eloquent Orations

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Thursday, July 27, 2006

I've Been A Bit Scarce Today

Sorry 'bout that. I've been working hard on the blog, though. It took me the better part of the day to find and implement two things:


A decent "recent comments" script that does what I want.

Smilies.

The recent comments script is working well. My only issue with it is that if you comment on a thread that's not on the front page, it doesn't register. There doesn't seem to be a good work-a-round for that.

The smilies seem to be working well...

In Firefox. Not IE. I'm not sure what the issue there is, but I'll look into it tomorrow.

That's all the news that's fit to print.

Kisses and goodnight.

:)

5 Eloquent Orations

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The British Museum, for vino of wil

In the On the Heels of Demons thread, vino of wil suggested that

"...you better not miss the British Museum. If you want to see fossils and learn about evolution there are few places better."

Do you mean this British Museum?

The front of the British Museum in London


With this stuff inside?

The Rosetta Stone

Statue of a Naked Guy

Statue of Another Naked Guy, possibly Pan

Bust of Zeus

Yet another Statue of a Naked Guy

Bust.  I think it may have been Plato or Aristotle

Egyptian Mummy

Or perhaps the Natural History Museum?

Natural History Museum Lobby


With this inside?

Human Evolution Exhibit

We wouldn't dream of missing the museums.

6 Eloquent Orations

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WWBD

What Would Blipey Do?


In a comment to the previous post, Blipey Needs Your Support , Dave wondered if blipey would allow him to sign his cast in the event of a real broken leg.

Kate commented that she was pretty sure blipey would, and in fact if Dave made the trip all the way to Kansas City to sign blipey's cast, blipey would probably frame it and hang it over his mantle.

We're polling our readers:

What Would Blipey Do?

8 Eloquent Orations

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Blipey Needs Your Support

We're going to start the day with a plug for one of our favoritest readers.


We hadn't seen blipey comment here at UDOJ much lately, and we were a little worried, so we popped in to his blog, A Clown in the Middle.

It seems our favorite Shakespeare Quoting Snuffleupagus has just had a big Kansas City Fringe Festival gig dropped in his lap at the last minute.

He's probably working hard on polishing his act for this 11th hour show, so we certainly understand if he doesn't have time to pop in here much right now.

If you are anywhere near the area, please go see his show. And leave him a little encouragement at his blog, we're sure he'd appreciate it.

Break a leg, blipey!

One last thing. We noticed that dear blipey has a link to UDOJ on his sidebar. Thank you blipey. Kisses to you from bof'us.

A Deep Wet Kiss From JanieBelleA Deep Wet Kiss From Kate

7 Eloquent Orations

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Wednesday, July 26, 2006

On The Heels Of Demons

Come the angels.


My darling sister, in all her glory, is better than an angel.

As you regulars know, I'm staying with my sister for the summer. I was supposed to go to school in England this fall, but that fell through in a big way.

I'm not crazy about the idea of going back to Columbus, but I have no place to live here. Kate and I have been talking about our own place. We each have a little money in the bank, and my Dad offered to pay the rent (within reason, of course) as long as I stayed in school.

So life isn't over, it just took a sharp left turn when I wasn't paying attention.

But NOW. Now comes the moment. The moment when my dearest darling sister really goes to bat for me. Family is a wonderful thing.

As you also know, Ruthie is pregnant with her third child. The house here is already cozy, and with Kate and I stuck in limbo and another baby on the way, it was getting positively packed.

Ruthie and her hubby had been talking about getting a bigger place. Before I got up this morning, they apparently had a long talk with Kate. And also apparently, they liked what she had to say.

Ruthie's house is paid for, free and clear. She and her gaggle of geese are going to buy a big new house, but they're not going to sell this one. At least, not to anyone else. They've offered to sell it to us, dirt cheap, (over $20K below market price!) on a land contract. Between what Kate and I can afford to spare from savings for the down payment, that's going to leave us with a $250/month house payment... which my Dad has offered to pay (same deal, though, only as long as I stay in college).

So the road of life has veered sharply back to the right and straightened out. I'm going to college, just not in England, and Kate and I will own our home without a house payment. We'll still have enough in savings to live off for a while, as long as we don't splurge too much (no plasma big screen TV). And as a present from my parents for Kate's upcoming separation from the military, Kate and I are going to England on vacation. Kate cleared it with the Guys in Green today, so the Corps won't cause us a problem. She even took care of her passport. It'll be here in two weeks.

"Ups and downs, Janie. Ups and downs." That's what keeps running through my head.

We'd be idiots not to take them up on it. We're not idiots.

5 Eloquent Orations

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How Am I?

An answer forever lost to the ether...



First the background. Two weeks ago I had a little booboo that needed tending by the doctor. So I go. On the way in the nurse, like every single nurse in every single doctor's office in the universe asks the question.... "How are you?"

We chit chat a minute, and somehow the subject came up about lovers or boyfriends or whatever, and something was said about "all us pretty girls". Now, it's of note that all of this new (for me) doctor's nurses (four or five of them) are above average in the ol' pretty department. No supermodels, but definitely above average. All very pretty.

Having recently entered my relationship with Kate, I attempt a response off the cuff.

"I'm sorry, I'm spoken for and I can't see any pretty girls."

Only a guy would say such a remarkably stupid thing. A guy, or me.

Of course what I meant was "I'm sorry, I'm spoken for and I'm no longer allowed to notice pretty girls."

Of course how they jokingly took it just to give me static was "I'm sorry, none of you within eyeshot is pretty."

I took a great deal of playful abuse that day.

The followup was this morning. I'm sitting in the waiting room recalling this conversation and it occurs to me to have a much better response ready for "The Question".

I'm waiting a short while, so I come up with something soulful and dramatic. I'm gonna knock 'em out with this. This is a response even a robot could use to weaken a girl's knees.

She calls my name.

I walk through the door.

She pops "The Question".

I begin...

"How am I?
HOW AM I?
'tis a strange question to be asked
by one such as yourself
on my second descent into the inferno..."

"Step off the scale, it has a mind of its own sometimes."

She.
interupted.
my.
soliloquy.

"So is that a 'good'?"

"yeah, whatever."

Nurses have no sense of drama.

And so my well prepared dramatic response vanished into the sterility of the doctor's office, never to be heard by human ears.

It is small consolation for me, but perhaps you can hear my voice in your head:

"How am I?
HOW AM I?
'tis a strange question to be asked
By one such as yourself
On my second descent into the inferno,
My personal circle of succubi.
Oh how magnificent you all are,
Oh how seductive.
Thirsting, hungering,
Lusting for that which is truly me.
My Lover shall have my head for this answer,
But you all
You all
Shall have my soul
And I shall blissfully burn forever.
That is how I am."

Gilbert Gottfried could get laid with that answer.

0 Eloquent Orations

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Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Candy From Strangers

Our first gift from a fan.


I don't usually accept images from strangers.

But AJ from NY was kind enough to send us this, and he obviously worked hard on it.

Thank you A.J.





9 Eloquent Orations

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There Is No Love From England

I understand why dogs bite the letter carriers.


I've always thought of England as a magical place where folks have moved past the Dark Ages. Alas, today reality bit me in the ass. Hard.

I've been corresponding with a family in England since we met last year. They were sort of friends of friends of a college buddy of my Dad's. They're part of the reason we went to England last summer. I was going to stay with them while I went to school there.

When we last spoke on the phone, they let me know I was welcome to bring a boyfriend with me to stay while I went to school, as long as he went to school or worked. That was in May.

In my last letter, I mentioned Kate. Now, I didn't propose or even suggest that she was coming with me, in fact Kate and I had just met a few days before. It was more just banter about what had been going on in my life. They had been keeping me up with things in the family there, I was keeping them up with things in my family.

Yeah...

Today a letter comes telling me that they aren't so sure my staying with them would be such a good idea after all. They have a 15 year old daughter (with whom I'd also been swapping mail) and apparently I may not be such a good influence on her. Now amazingly just a few weeks ago I was someone that she could emulate.

Well I wonder what changed between then and now...hmmm... let me think about that...

So now, not only do I not have a place to live, they withdrew their recommendation of me.

No home, no school, no visa.

I have to get off this rollercoaster. It's driving me nuts.

Kate's been great, she's been cuddling and petting me all afternoon. I was stressing over leaving her and running off to England, anyway, so I guess this will at least help my stress level.

But the whole thing still just sucks. It's a crappy way to go about things.

It's not too late to register at Coastal Carolina, though. I can go there for the first couple years and get my English 101 and stuff out of the way, then transfer to UNC or State. I don't think I want to go back to Columbus. OSU is a great school and all, but I'm kinda likin' the weather here.

I don't know if things really "happen for a reason", but right now I hope so. I'll certainly be happy to be with Kate. Of course, we'll still have to find our own place to live. We can't mooch off Ruthie forever.

Well we could try, but she'd get wise eventually.

grin

I think I'm going to bed now.

3 Eloquent Orations

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In The Event You Need A Laugh Badly

I'm all crapped out, but this helped a little.





4 Eloquent Orations

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Francis Collins: "The Language of God"

Dr. Francis S. Collins, M.D., Ph.D., director of the human genome project, appeared this morning on the Diane Rehm Show. The archived broadcast usually appears about an hour after the show ends at noon. I'll post the link when I have it. [EDIT - Here's the Windows Media Player Link, and Here's the Real Audio Link to this segment of today's show.]


I only tuned in midway through, just about the time Dr. Collins was talking about his personal faith. He is apparently a "born-again" Christian.

Some of his comments at first sounded like he was a literal Bible type Christian, and I have to say I was expecting an ID endorsement at any moment.

As usual, Diane cut right to the chase.

She asked specifically about evolution, about literal interpretation of the Bible, about creationism, and about ID.

Dr. Collins was pretty unequivocal in his ringing endorsement of evolution, and was very clear but polite in dismissing Intelligent Design, as well as literal interpretations of the Bible.

His bottom-line comment on ID was "Intelligent Design I think is headed for a discrediting on the scientific basis, and in the process I fear that those who support it may also be discredited." (This comment begins about 26:40 into the interview.)

I also found another point of his rather interesting, involving "the soul". He pointed out, in reference to embryonic stem cell research, that science can't tell us when the soul enters the body, or even if there is such a thing. He mentioned twins, specifically. His point was that if one believes in souls, and if one grants that identical twins each have their own soul, then a soul must enter the body sometime after conception, and after the embryo splits in two.

I had never really thought about this before, but it makes for a fascinating thought. Personally, I think there is something more than electrical impulses which make up that which is "me". However, it's always seemed silly to me to insist that "I" entered my body before it developed a brain. It just seems that a body without a brain isn't really terribly useful. If indeed "I" were to be choosing a body to hop into, I think "I" would have enough sense to jump into one that "I" was sure was functional at some level. One that at least had someplace for "me" to go, and one that had a pretty good chance of at least making it out of the birth canal. Call me selfish, but I really don't relish the idea of dying, much less dying before living.

Yeah, it's one of them "Arguments From Incredulity". What's your point?

Here's the Amazon link for his new book, The Language of God: A Scientist Presents Evidence for Belief which has just been released.


0 Eloquent Orations

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It's all about the Theology Science

(Post by Kate)

Straight from the horse's mouth.



Jacktone: Job descriptions and what prospective employers actually want are some times at odds. Of course, I’d be delighted to interpret the theological significance of evolution to the public.

Comment by William Dembski — July 24, 2006 @ 7:15 pm


To quote Dave, 'nuff said.



1 Eloquent Orations

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John A. Davison Office Pool

(Post by Kate)
Place your bets, the prize is a guest post on our blog, uncensored, on any subject.

No "F bomb", that's the only restriction, unless Janie can think of something else.
[Edit - No porn. See This Comment below]


How long will it be before John A. Davison gets banned from UD?

Place your bets here. Closest guess without going over wins.

For example, if one person guesses 10 days and one guesses 15 days and he's banned on day 14, whoever bet 10 days wins.

[EDIT - We are now offering a second prize. Closest guess without going under will also win a guest post. See This Comment below.]

Anyone have a date for his first post over there? Was it yesterday?

Is this his first comment?

If so, then today is Day 1. [EDIT - Day one ends at Midnight Eastern Daylight Time, today, 25JUL06. See comments below.]

Kate


Current Standings (red highlight indicates winner if he is banned today)

Bourgeois Rage has July 25th.
Steve Story has July 28th. FORFEIT
Arden Chatfield has July 30th.
Blipey has August 4th.
DaveScot has August 14th.
Lifewish has August 20th.
Alan Fox has August 28th.
AJ has October 31st.

UPDATE: Looks like we have our winners! "
JAD was banned at 8:50pm, CST, on 8/30/06." Alan Fox and AJ each get to make a guest post. Email your posts to us, boys, and we'll get them posted for you.

84 Eloquent Orations

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Monday, July 24, 2006

Adding On To Dante

It may be the greatest hubris, but let me just add one level of Hell


Via the ever lovely Dr. Tara Smith, comes this MSNBC article.

Pregnancy Centers Misled Women on Abortion

I suppose it's predictable enough, but it's always a shock to see it anyways.

From the article:

Care Net, an umbrella group for evangelical pregnancy centers across the country, instructs its affiliates to tell callers there is a possibility that abortion can lead to greater risk of breast cancer, according to Molly Ford, an official with the organization. She said there have been several studies that say it does, and several that say it doesn't.

I'm sorry, did I read that wrong? Evangelical pregnancy centers? Are these the same folks that pretend to be abortion clinics, but never actually give abortions? Either way, they're lying to women about health issues to trick them into doing what the fundies want.

If your position is solid, why do you need to lie about it? Why is it necessary to trick people into adopting your position? If the evidence backs you up, you shouldn't have any problem that would warrant lying and deceit.

This is indeed what is commonly referred to as "Lying for Jesus". Seems to me their own God would be ashamed of them.

Since we were just talking about Dante's The Divine Comedy in another thread, it seems appropriate, though perhaps arrogant, that I should add a bit to The Inferno:

There is one extra special level of Hell set aside for people who lie to women about their health, just to promote their religion. I suspect it is full of Fundy Christians.


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Evolution of the Wooly Worm

Here's a question for ya'.


I don't have any pictures, so I'm just gonna' do my best to describe this.

Out in Kentucky, there are these super fuzzy caterpillars. They're black and orange, and about 2 or 3 inches long. Sometimes they're all black, all orange, or black on both ends and orange in the middle or vice versa.

My grandfather (Papaw) is an old "mountain man" kinda guy. Very woodsy. He was a coal miner back in the day, and grew up poor as dirt. He dropped out of school and went to work sometime around the fourth grade. He still doesn't read very well. He used to keep a still on the back forty of the farm, but until she died, my grandmother (Granny Bea being a good Christian woman and all) would always sneak out and find it, and trash it, whenever he'd be away visiting for a few days. He'd come back and rebuild it every time, but in a new place. In an odd way, it was sort of a lovers' game. He hasn't built one since she died a few years ago. It's so sweet in the most unusual way. It's sort of a shame, 'cause he made the best 'shine in the whole (dry) county. Don't ask me how I know. Nonya bizwax.

Anyways, back to the wooly worms. Every fall, he goes out on the farm, picks a few of them up, brings them back to the house, and predicts the weather of the coming winter by their color.

It goes like this. The winter is three months long, and the wooly worm has three "portions", the middle and the two ends. Now, where there's black, that's where the winter will be bad, and where there's orange, that's where the winter will be mild.

Old wives' tale, right? You would think.

I admit that I haven't ever kept a written journal or anything, to record his accuracy, and I further admit my bias. However, the entire family swears he's never been wrong. He can't read an almanac, so even if they got one every year, that wouldn't help him. He rarely leaves the farm, and even then only goes "a visitin' his kin", so we're talking backwoods folks here, not meteorologists or scientists or nothin'.

My question is, is there some way the wooly worm may have evolved some trait that causes it's coloration to react to atmospheric changes or something that would cause this phenomenon? Is it possible that maybe a particularly high humidity or something during the summer both portends a less mild winter and also affects the coloration of the wooly worm's wool?

Or are we poor country bumpkins just all being snookered?

Of course there is the possibility that our memories in March of what Papaw said in September and October are biased, but that IS a lot of folks to be remembering wrong, all exactly the same way. Possible.

(Anyone calls Papaw a liar gets a kick in the shin. I'm warning you ahead of time, just so y'know.)

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After The Storm

It's been an interesting week here, but it looks like things are settling down.



Now looking at the graph of this weeks visits below, guess which day Hurricane Jane blew in...

The Week of Hurricane Jane

I guess I should get banned more often....


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Monday Morning Sunrises Aren't So Bad After All

After being up 'til after 2:00 this morning, I was rudely awakened by Kate before 4.



Kate picked this morning for a surprise. Ok, I'm less than enthused at first, but my lack of sleep is nobody's fault but mine. When I started to dress, Kate stopped me and put my bathing suit on me. She loves to dress me, and I love when she does it, but swimming at 4 o'clock in the morning? Then she wiggled me into my jeans and a sweatshirt. Now I'm totally lost. Ok, it's been like a million degrees here lately. Definitely not jeans and sweatshirt weather. What the heck is she thinking?

I managed to make it out to the car without being carried, which is quite a feat for me at that hour, let me tell ya'. Sometime before we hit the end of the driveway, I was out like a light again.

When I woke up, Kate was turning off the car in a parking lot, and I was looking at something large and dark in front of the car. As Kate hopped out of the car with WAY too much energy for 0-Dark-Thirty, it dawns on me that I'm staring at a sand dune, and I'm hearing the ocean in the background.

The beach? I'm at the beach in jeans and a sweatshirt in the middle of summer, sometime before God's alarm clock has gone off? Kate was rummaging around in the trunk, and I hadn't even attempted the seat belt yet. I was seriously dazed and confused. And still half asleep. Maybe three quarters.

Well about that time Kate about caused me to stain the passenger's seat by tapping on my window. I squealed, she squealed, then she busted out laughing. It must have been funny on her side of the window, but it sure wasn't on mine.

Well I got my door open, and Kate leaned in and kissed me, still giggling, and helped me find the damned button for the seat belt. Man, that car light was bright and annoying.

Now I always thought that the beaches were closed at night, but apparently there's one place on Topsail Island where you can park your car any old time and get on the beach. I'd driven right past that lot a dozen times, and never noticed it. We usually go to the next lot up, where the bathrooms and the snack bar are. That'll teach me to pay more attention to the side of the road when I'm driving, and less attention to the traffic. Who cares about the traffic if you might miss an all-night parking lot at the beach, after all? It's right on the road, too. No trees or buildings to block it. No possible way for anyone but me to miss it. Blondes, sheesh.

Kate and I crossed over the dune on the walkway, took off our sandals, and started down the beach, away from the snack bar. And the bathrooms. Did you see the comment vino's sister made on her website about country girls and peeing in the yard? Well, a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do. Even on the beach. No way I was getting in the water. It's COLD on the beach at 4 or 5 in the morning. Even in the summer. That explained the sweatshirt and jeans.

There were a few people walking up and down the beach, but they were few and far between. The waves coming in were sooo loud, but yet it was so deafeningly quiet at the same time. Very strange, but very cool at the same time.

Way down the beach we picked a spot and laid out the blanket. It was starting to get light out, and Kate wanted to watch the sun come up. We sat on the blanket for a while, then sort of wiggled it around and arranged it so we could lay back and watch. We managed to get about a half a ton of sand on it, but it wasn't too bad. You have to expect such things on the beach. Somebody way back when had the bright idea of making beaches out of sand, and the rest of us just have to live with it.

So we cuddled and kissed and whispered little "Sweet Nothings" to each other for a while, and then I rolled over to watch the sun come up and Kate snuggled up behind me with my head on her arm. We didn't say much, we just watched the sky get bright, and eventually the sun came up over the clouds on the horizon.

It was beautiful. Inspiring. I don't think I've ever seen those shades of pink and purple in the sky before. Or anywhere, for that matter.

Monday morning sunrises aren't so bad after all.

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Sunday, July 23, 2006

Have You Seen Billy D's New Picture

at Uncommonly Disgustipatin'?


Now tell me that when that picture was taken, he wasn't looking at his new playmate and thinking, "Man, I bet Denyse has GIHUGIC nuts."

He's positively salivating at MorphoDyke across the page there. And leaning over to disguise his...um... anticipation.

Freakboy.

Bof'em.

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Braxton Eugene

Here's his birth announcement online:


Remember last week when I mentioned my cousin having a baby?

Here's the Growing Family Site for King's Daughters Medical Center. He was born on July 15th.

Here's the direct link to his page

He's so cute!!!
Braxton Eugene

(Like they were going to stop a Goddess from copying the picture! Duh.)


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Since It's A Slow Sunday And All,

I'm fiddling with the site.

New Cable guy rocked, by the way. I have a few things to fix, and then we'll get to commenting and posting.

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Saturday, July 22, 2006

New Banner At The Top Of The Page

What do you think of it?

The background color is black, because Collier's painting of Lilith looks so much better on black.

The painting of Lilith was done by John Collier in 1892. Lilith is a character from Judeo-Christian mythos, ripped off from the Babylonians. She is said to have been Adam's first wife, made from the dust of the earth as he was, rather than from Adam's rib as Eve was. When Adam told her to get on her back like a good little wife because he was superior and should boink her from on top, Lilith told Adam to go yank it himself. "I will not lie below", said she. Hence the subtitle of this blog.

Anyways, Lilith ran off and consorted with the three big-time demons and spawned lots and lots of little demons. You can check Wikipedia for the rest of the story, it's really fascinating to me.

This is the hottie who lent her name to The Lilith Fair, a roaming festival of female musicians.

The blog name is in Edwardian Script, because it's girly and pretty. That's it.

There are two hurricane signal flags at either end of the banner, recognizing my lover's pet name for me when I'm on one of my "Rude Raving Bitch Rants". She calls me "Hurricane Jane".

And last, but not least, the roses. There are a dozen roses on the banner for Kate. Here at UDreamOfJanie we hand out virtual roses for those we feel deserve a special sweet recognition from us. Raspberries are the antithesis of roses, and we hand them out too. We've been trying to keep a running list in The Roses And Raspberries thread.

Kate gets a dozen roses from me everytime she clicks a page on the blog.

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Up Late With The New Guy

Kate and I stayed up late last night with The New Guy.



With no interweb, we decided to watch a couple movies on DVD, and then we caught "The New Guy" on TV.

Let me just say that Eliza Dushku is the second hottest chicky on the planet. (Next to Kate, of course.)

Talk about great hair. And legs. And abs. And boobs. And hair.

And Geez O Man can she work it when she's leading cheers and dancing! If she had ever popped into OUR locker room, there'd have been an incident. One that would have gone down in school history.

For those of you who've never seen it, there's another scene where she's riding a mechanical bull. She's wearing a top that's basically a big bandanna.

Watching her ride the bull is very sexy. Slow and sensual. Like making love.

Gotta tell ya', it wound me up. Apparently it wound Kate up, too.

Yeah, Kate's getting a mechanical bull and a bandanna for Christmas. I'm getting The New Guy and Bring It On on DVD.

(Written Saturday morning 7/22/06, still offline)

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Solitaire anyone?

A Deck of Cards.


That's what a computer is without an internet connection.

A very expensive deck of cards.

We have four very expensive decks of cards here right now.

(Written Saturday morning, 7/22/06, still offline)

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First time we've been able to log on

since yesterday afternoon. just want to say that before we go dark again.

i hope you all have been behaving well....

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Friday, July 21, 2006

As The Cable Modem Burns

Let me just say one thing about the Time Warner Cable Guy.

He's a friggin' idiot.


Now, I know I'm a girl. I like being a girl. That doesn't mean I'm stupid.

Here's what happened. Guy shows up. Janie and I are the only ones here, so he's already annoyed, because "the man of the house" isn't here for him to talk to. Asshole.

Then, when I tell him that the neighbors had a guy up the pole the same day we started having trouble, he ignores me and walks away around the side of the house.

Here's what the little dipstick did. He undid all my patchwork, and put the cables back together. Now I had already taken the cable modem out to the trunk line and tapped it in there, and we STILL HAD PROBLEMS!

You would think that that is a pretty strong indication that the problem is UP THE DAMNED POLE. Nope. Ignored me, put it back the way it was, told me to stop messing with it, it would be fine, and left.

15 minutes. That's how long it took for the cable to drop out again.

I think the tech support guy on the phone at Time Warner needs a hearing aid now. Now we have to wait a couple more days for a different guy. Ruthie's husband said something about a property line and a big stick regarding the first guy. He won't be back.


Kate

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About the New Colors

So blipey, Kate, and I have been fiddling with the colors of the blog.

What do you think? Like the new ones, the old ones, or something different?

Any suggestions are welcome, though we can't promise we'll take them.

We'll entertain layout suggestions, too, if you have them. Lots of unclaimed real estate to work with.

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So The UD Saga Continues

I see they're having a bit of a problem


with their vowels...

Too funny. I'm just wondering if she's a fascist or an idiot. Your choice, vote here, vote often.

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It's Beginning to Thunder Here

No Excuses. Cable Guy don't show up, I'm kickin' his ass.

That is all.

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Thursday, July 20, 2006

Just to verify, I just posted at AtBC

Yes, that was us. One post to verify we are who we say we are.

Move on with your lives, now boys and get back to comedy. You suck at detective stories.

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I Wonder What the Odds Are

of four people from Ontario, Canada (two in Toronto, one in London, one in Waterloo), all visiting the exact same page of my little old blog at the same time.


Hello, Denyse. Piss off.

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The First Science Friday Comes Early

Ok, so once again I'm going to break my very own, brand new rule....



Well it's not really a rule anyway, more of a guideline...

Kate's home and had to fiddle with the cables again. Whilst doing that, she came across this guy. He's like 3 or 4 inches from leg tip to leg tip.

It's the first time I've seen a spider like this.


Our Spider Friend
Our Spider Friend

Anyone know what kind of critter he is?

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Homage to Ira Flatow

Ok, in order to bring order to our little corner of the universe, I think we're going to do something orderly.


Since we don't have a cat, we're going to do Science Fridays. That'll help me to work on the science stuff on a more regular basis, but still do the Literature and Blog-about-my-life-and-love things that I set out to do.

Starting tomorrow, we're going to work on one little science topic a week. Any thoughts on this?

Any suggestions for tomorrow? We can start the science lessons over from the beginning if anyone feels the need.

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On The Green-Eyed Monster

He's rearing his ugly little head a bit...

Kate got a call and had to go to the base to take care of something.

Couple of thoughts here...

  1. She's already told me about the guys she's dated over there.

  2. I do trust her to be honest.

  3. She gave me the OK to blog about this... in fact it was her idea.

  4. It's the first time we've really not been together since we've been together.

  5. The call was unexpected.

  6. It was from one of the guys she dated.

  7. She can't tell me why she had to go.

  8. Have you ever noticed how big the shower is when you're all by yourself in it?

  9. I hadn't.

  10. She told me she Loved me before she left. (aka "She dropped the L bomb")

  11. It was the first time she said that seriously.

  12. I don't want her to tell me that to ease my tension, I hope she said it because she means it.

  13. I said it back.

  14. I meant it.

  15. I don't want to be clingy and neurotic. I had a boyfriend like that once.

  16. That's why he's an EX-boyfriend.

  17. He didn't last long, it was annoying and kinda scary.






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Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Today UD, Tomorrow The World

Hurricane Jane blew in and damn near broke that interweb thingy.


Ok, that's hyperbole. But in the last few days we've seen some interesting developments in the blogosphere.

First I owe DaveScot a huge apology. I don't know if I AM responsible for how things went for you over there, but I FEEL responsible. I really and truly am sorry.

That being said, I'm not at all sorry for what I said over there. That bitch deserved it. Freak.

I see that comments over there are locked for everybody. I don't think the good Dr. wants to hear what anybody has to say about his boneheaded choice for Dave's replacement. If I am in some small way partly responsible for the comments being shut down, I deserve a whole pile of roses.

As for the aftermath of Hurricane Jane on this blog, lookie here:
This week's visitor count.

Now for that big spike in readership, we owe a great big "Thank You!" shout out to Ed Brayton, from Dispatches From the Culture Wars. I don't know if he cares much for us or not, neither of us has interacted with him at all, but he's sending huge amounts of traffic here, and we like him for that. Ed gets a whole dozen roses.

Having said that, I hope that all you folks from the Culture War who came for the spectacle, stay for the conversation. Be polite. Civil at the very least. I'm the only one allowed to throw "Rude Raving Bitch Rants" around here, and Kate is trying to help me off that horse.

Roses to Kate. A whole dozen. And a sweet, soft kiss.

I'm almost ready to drop the L bomb on her.

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My Mistress

by Kate


My Mistress

On heels of satin,
In the blackest of night,
Away slips my bride,
The stars that I love.
And inch by inch,
Moment by moment,
Mile by mile,
and star by star,
Steals my awesome mistress,
Her power builds and churns,
as she nears me,
And my soul quivers in my skin
at her approach.
The wind is her slave,
and comes at her silent command.
Softly it begins,
Then increasing with stealthy speed,
Leaving my hair wild, unfettered.
She begins to speak,
Quietly at first; distantly.
She kisses me softly, moistly,
with the first tiny drops of passion.
But rapidly builds the lust of my mistress,
And soon I am drenched in her violent need.
She demands my obeisance
with electric displays of temper,
and I gladly give it.
Her whisper becomes the passionate cry
of a long neglected lover
echoing off the mountains
and slicing through the trees that surround me.
Unmoving, I experience her strength, her need,
And I am humbled.
And when, at last, she is sated, breathless,
We part.
"Until next time, my love,
There is no other," I whisper.
She leaves me with a quiet kiss of rain.
And yet she knows,
I lie.

K.


I wrote this about a thunderstorm. While astronomy is my bride, the thunderstorm is my mistress. I have a love and passion for each, and yet the way I feel about them is as different as, well, a clear sky is to a thunderstorm.

It could be read otherwise, if you choose.


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The Dreams

This one is mine.


The Dreams

The dreams come.
I sweat.
Shall I see the angels?
Perhaps the demons this night.
or Death itself.
Women all, each and every one a woman,
Beautiful, Sensuous, Ravenous, Captivating, Spellbinding,
Eager to grace me with her presence,
Thirsting for my soul.
It is the Demon Tribe that owns me this night
I am carried away in their arms.
I succumb, my head thrown back, my hair trailing in the biting wind,
Limp, naked, lifeless,
Content.

J.

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For the Courtesan Ch'ing Lin

by Wu Tsao

(Post by Kate)

I came across this on the web. I read it to Janie, and she just melted.



For the Courtesan Ch'ing Lin

On your slender body
Your jade and coral girdle ornaments chime
Like those of a celestial companion
Come from the Green Jade City of Heaven.
One smile from you when we meet,
And I become speechless and forget every word.
For too long you have gathered flowers,
And leaned against the bamboos,
Your green sleeves growing cold,
In your deserted valley:
I can visualize you all alone,
A girl harboring her cryptic thoughts.

You glow like a perfumed lamp
In the gathering shadows.
We play wine games
And recite each other's poems.
Then you sing `Remembering South of the River'
With its heart breaking verses. Then
We paint each other's beautiful eyebrows.
I want to possess you completely -
Your jade body
And your promised heart.
It is Spring.
Vast mists cover the Five Lakes.
My dear, let me buy a red painted boat
And carry you away.


-Translated by Kenneth Rexroth and Ling Chung

You can find it Here along with a ton of other wonderful verse. Janie will add the site to the Lit links in the sidebar once our interweb connection is fixed.

Kisses,
Kate

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Blogger Having Trouble Again, Too?

So it would seem. Anyone else having a problem with Blogger?

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We're Temporarily Offline

Sorry kids, we're having a spot of trouble with the cable modem.


Kate has tracked down the problem, she's going to work on a better work-a-round than the one we're using now.

The cable guy is coming Friday to fix it, until then posting may be sporadic.

Please continue to behave.

I only had a sec to check through the blog. One comment:

John Davison. Knock it off or go elsewhere. If you can't hold an intelligent conversation without slinging crap, you're not welcome here.

JanieBelle


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Tuesday, July 18, 2006

In Which Janie Gets Banned

By popular demand here is what we saved before the thread got the axe. I'm going to go ahead and post it, and then go back and start tagging to try and make it legible. Unfortunately, bold type doesn't show up well on this page, and I'm not familiar enough with the Style Sheet thing to adjust it, or even if it's possible.

My comments are in red, comments normally seen in bold type, inserted by Dave, are in blue.



1. Speaking as a brilliant man I can honestly say this is the greatest line of bs I have ever heard. It does, however, explain a lot about the radical acceptance of Darwinism.
Comment by Jon Jackson — July 15, 2006 @ 10:45 pm

2. OTOH, Darwin was, a I understand it, faithful to his wife.
So
This is either BS.
Or Darwin wasn’t brilliant.
Comment by tribune7 — July 15, 2006 @ 11:03 pm

3. Bravo, Tribune7, well put!
Comment by bFast — July 15, 2006 @ 11:36 pm

4. I lost all respect for Richard Feynman after reading James Gleick’s book, “Genius: The Life and Science of Richard Feynman.” (Gleick is the famous New York Times science writer best known for “Chaos: The Making of a New Science.”)
From the Feynman biography, page 287:
“…he had pursued women with a singlemindedness that violated most of the public, if not the private, scruples associated with the sexual ballet. He dated undergraduates, paid prostitutes in whorehouses, taught himself (as he saw it) how to beat bar girls at their own game, and slept with the young wives of several of his friends among the physics graduate students.”
This has nothing to do with Darwinian evolution. It is quite simply complete moral degeneracy.
Comment by GilDodgen — July 15, 2006 @ 11:56 pm

5. My dog must be a genius, who knew?
Comment by mentok — July 16, 2006 @ 2:29 am

6. Not all brilliant men are skirt chasers of course but…
There’s a lot more to it than what the author suggested. The temptations are greater for brilliant men. A lot of women are very attracted to smart men regardless of wealth, power, or physical good looks. They don’t necessarily want to wed but they do want them for the father of their children. That drive in women would probably be the major factor. Monogamy for humans is a social convention not a biological imperative. Polygamy for men is a biological imperative. Look at the setup - men produce millions of gametes fresh every day for most of their lives. Women are born with a fixed number of gametes of limited shelf life. Clearly two different reproductive strategies set in opposition are in play there. But even given that women have a biological imperative to attract a keep a single mate she doesn’t have a biological imperative to be sexually monogamous with him.
At any rate, what I described above should work to cause allelic evolution to favor high intelligence in humans. And remember, when it comes to the science of evolution, should is the same as does.
Comment by DaveScot — July 16, 2006 @ 9:48 am

7. Dave,
Given the appropriateness of the subject matter, and the fact that we’ve managed to tick off enough people for one week, we’d like to explore your comment a little further at our blog.
Is it ok if we quote your last comment there? We won’t do it without your ok.


No problem. -ds

Comment by janiebelle — July 16, 2006 @ 10:36 am

8. This is stupid. He is just describing frequent male behavior at any intellectual level. I have known many guys from the playground who never got pass driving a truck who would act the same way if they could and probably still do when the opportunity arises. It has nothing to do with IQ but is a matter of opportunity or the ability to attract the female. And certainly fame and money help a lot. But other skills helps too, such as verbal ability. When I was a teen ager, the guy with the best lines is the one that always seemed to have a different girl.
Does he mean that low IQ males are more faithful? Or does he mean that low IQ males are more easily socialized by religion or Victorian standards?
Comment by jerry — July 16, 2006 @ 10:47 am

9. “A lot of women are very attracted to smart men regardless of wealth, power, or physical good looks. They don’t necessarily want to wed but they do want them for the father of their children.”
Huh? I don’t know whose this idea is, but there is a barking great hole in it: People who have affairs rarely want children to come of them. I hardly need enumerate the reasons why that is so, but for women such reasons have included - in historical times for which we really have information -extreme poverty, divorce, unmarriageability, induced abortion, infanticide, and a shameful death by stoning.
Of course, we could always default to Darwinian storytelling about Pleistocene cave guys and gals who “must have” or “would have” thought, said, or done this or that.
Well, “must have” and “would have” never caught the fish, right?
The only humans of whom we have any real knowledge are the modern ones, and they KNOW why they rarely want their affairs to end with a bun in the oven.
Women who want a bunch of kids typically get married to one stable guy who owns land and/or works for a living - and they don’t fool around. They get involved with a religion that promotes “family values”. They know their rights and make sure the guy knows his duties. If he doesn’t, the priest or witch doctor, or whoever is happy to explain them.
cheers,

I suggest you do some googling before going off half cocked next time. Human history stretches back millions of years and you are evidently running on about your own anecdotal experience and some knowledge of the most recent eyeblink of human history where social custom made monogamy a more expected behavior. My anecdotal experience is far different from yours but that’s neither here nor there when it comes to monogamy in the human species. Something’s barking alright but it wasn’t me. -ds

Denyse O’Leary
Toronto
Comment by O'Leary — July 16, 2006 @ 11:12 am

10. Thanks, Dave.
We appreciate it.
Comment by janiebelle — July 16, 2006 @ 1:28 pm


11. While I was waiting for my comment to clear (#8), I added to it. I happen to agree with Denyse more than Dave though I am sure there is something in the “getting the best for my eggs” theory. Here is the rest of my comment that didn’t get posted at first.
I don’t think this behavior of women has anything to do with who is the father of their children. Everyone wants an exciting life and for many women, the easiest way to an exciting life has been to associate with someone of wealth or fame or maybe just a fun or interesting person. This is changing somewhat though we may always have the groupies.
When I was in graduate school, one of the female students was pursuing a concept in a marketing context that women were not fulfilled unless they were married and had a child and how this related to purchase behavior. She thought it was a biological imperative and in fact had been taught that theory in Social Psychology. The drive to have children was supposedly wired into the female neurons. Obviously, present day female behavior patterns has dispelled that hypothesis. A very large segment of the current female population don’t care if they reproduce and many wait till their late 30’s or 40’s and finally do so more from lingering social prescriptions than I think from biological needs.
I also knew a very prosperous women who said she did not want to go into old age without children. She had seen too many lonely old women with no one to care for them and did not want it to happen to her. She made sure she had children in her late 20’s and early 30’s. So there are a lot of motives to have or not have children and they may not be wired in.
I also had an anecdotal conversation with someone who trains Olympic level athletes and was commenting on how pretty the females tended to be in Australian and US sports such as swimming and beach volly ball. We were commenting that maybe the good athletes are able to marry an attractive mate and the result is beautiful athletic and often very tall children. Hey, Darwin in action.
Comment by jerry — July 16, 2006 @ 1:42 pm

12. Folks, I think the salient point here is how easily Darwinism “explains” Einstein’s infidelity. Had Einstein remained faithful to his wife, Morris could have just as easily formulated a Darwinian explanation for that as well. Darwinism explains everything and therefore explains nothing.
Comment by terrylmirll — July 16, 2006 @ 1:43 pm

13. Well, at least DaveScot and Denyse make a good illustration of where evopsych goes wrong. Both positions can be argued: that women will be promiscuous/faithful in order to have more children/better cared for children. But Dave, don’t you realize that Denyse actually does have a clue what she is talking about–and have you noticed she has a far more civil way of saying it, besides?
Comment by TomG — July 16, 2006 @ 1:49 pm

14. A little bit of old-fashioned dualism might shed some light here (I know you hate this stuff, Dave, but here goes) : The human is physically an animal, and so it is of course true that the physical demands of procreation will have a primarily physical/animistic form, such as the greater male tendency toward promiscuity, etc. as Dave described. However, and here’s the key: the human posesses a spiritual core which should at all times govern the material body, ennobling it in all of its forms and activities. This holds especially true with regard to the sexual instinct, the proper sublimation of which can yield tremendous creative energy for spiritual/cultural work in every field. The recognition of a hierarchy of value-giving elements within the human (physical/spiritual) explains the presence of the physical tendencies toward promiscuous behaviour while at the same time providing the key to the healthy conquest of this potentially chaotic nature.
Comment by tinabrewer — July 16, 2006 @ 2:02 pm

15. Ok, we gotta say something about that.
Tina,
Exactly what does spirituality have to do with sex or monogamy? How many wives did the Old Testament Kings have again? How many concubines?
Start with Solomon, please.
Comment by janiebelle — July 16, 2006 @ 2:28 pm


16. Wilt Chamberlain is the most brillant man in history!
Comment by tribune7 — July 16, 2006 @ 2:31 pm

17. Dave — Human history stretches back millions of years.
If you take history to be what’s recorded in the written word it’s only 8,000 or so years. If you take it in a more general sense to mean everything relating to man’s past (i.e. including the “prehistoric”) the age of man is estimated via archaeology, paleontology etc. at 200,000 years.
Comment by tribune7 — July 16, 2006 @ 2:45 pm

18. janiebelle
Adam just had one
Comment by tribune7 — July 16, 2006 @ 2:47 pm

19. Janiebelle
Where did you read Solomon was very spiritual? He was given great wisdom but in his own words point out in Ecc. he was the most wise fool around. Those wifes turn Solomon into idolatry. It’s hard to remain spiritual when you got wisdom, wealth, and fame. I seen even the most humble christians change (became very proud) after God bless them with these three.
Comment by Smidlee — July 16, 2006 @ 2:48 pm

20. Seems to me he was smart and wise enough to get at least two books in the ol Bible. He must have been doing SOMETHING right. You should read his stuff sometime. If you can’t read Song of Solomon and see how absolutely divine it is, your issue isn’t with me, it’s with girls in general.
And don’t blame the wives for what Solomon did. He was a big boy, capable of making his own decisions.
Monogomy…. hmmm.. was there a commandment on that I missed? Bishops, yes… general population? ‘fraid I missed that one.
The point was WHAT DOES ONE HAVE TO DO WITH THE OTHER?
As for Adam, the books that didn’t make the cut because of a bunch of misogynistic men decided they didn’t like them mention another wife. A first wife. Look it up.
Comment by janiebelle — July 16, 2006 @ 2:56 pm


21. Janiebelle: First of all, when I use the term “spiritual” I am not referring to “things having to do with religion”. Although religion should of course concern itself with the spiritual, it often doesn’t, unfortunately. Instead, I use the term to denote a particular inner substance or composition of a being: in humans, the animating core is “spirit” i.e. the substance which is not bound to and limited by matter. Not everyone would agree on this use of the term, but that is how I meant it.
Also, I am not using the Bible as a starting-point for understanding all things spiritual, and I happen to be of the opinion that lots of really bad stuff made it into the Bible. Thats neitherhere nor there, however, and we are specifically instructed to avoid religious disputations here. I just brought up dualism in order to shed light upon the fact that science will always be able to find out things about our bodies which make it possible to argue that we are determined in our behaviour like many animal species appear to be. That is because we have animal bodies. However, no successful human society has ever developed which has based itself upon the frank and unquestioned acceptance of biological urges and necessities. In human society, these urges are AlWAYS chaotic and destructive. There is a reason why this is true, and I am merely proposing that the reason is that unbridled promiscuity violates not a material value set, but rather a spiritual value set which might include concepts such as ‘fidelity/steadfastness/faithfulness”.
The animal value of procreating the species can easily be fulfilled in many sexual contexts. If the only necessity is a loosely defined ‘i need to make sure my young are cared for’, then any number of arrangements would suit, and there would never be the necessity of powerful inner urges toward fidelity and sexual limitation, which urges are obvious even in societies in which, for example, forms such as polygamy are encouraged.
It seems to generally be the case that monogamy is a sort of “latter-day” development; the more primitive the society, the more likely that there will exist formal, accepted, non-monogamous arrangements. While I cannot speak helpfully about the characters in the bible, I could take a stab at an explanation just based on a developmental idea: In general, it appears that most sets of things in creation develop from rudimentary states into more complex, individuated forms. This is true of plants, animals, planets, you name it. It is also true of human spirits. Perhaps (and again, I am making a stab here, not claiming to know for sure on this one) at an earlier period in human spiritual development, polygamous marriage was still a harmonious form because the individuation process for the humans involved had not yet progressed to the point where the unique monogamous relationship, with all of its clear spiritual benefits, had become necessary or beneficial. Just as we expect different patterns of bonding and interrelationships for young children than we do for adults, perhaps the human spirit has a “childhood”, “adolescence” and “maturity” over the long-haul, and the differing forms for human society reflect what is appropriate for the particular maturity of a given people at a given time. I dunno. I tried…
Comment by tinabrewer — July 16, 2006 @ 3:03 pm

22. Solomon did right when he was young but if you study the scriptures you will find Solomon changed as he got older. A spirtual man will do his best to please his wife instead of himself. Solomon admitted in Eccesiastes he did whatever he desired which he’s conculsion was all is vanity. A carnal beleiver is one who give into his desire and lives for “I,me,myself”… lives by “if it feels good do it”
Comment by Smidlee — July 16, 2006 @ 3:04 pm

23. What the heck are you going on about? What “spiritual benefits” of monogomy? Back that up. SHOW ME. First it sounds like you’re saying that the human spirit evolved from a less spiritual state, then the rest of all that blather sounded like a good ol’ fashioned Billy Sunday rant to me. Nothing more.
Comment by janiebelle — July 16, 2006 @ 3:08 pm

24. Smidlee,
Back it up. You’re making the claim that Solomon was not spiritual because he was polygamous. Prove that the one was caused by the other. The burden is on you. BACK THAT UP.
Comment by janiebelle — July 16, 2006 @ 3:10 pm

25. Someone left this comment in response to my previous post:
“I suggest you do some googling before going off half cocked next time. Human history stretches back millions of years and you are evidently running on about your own anecdotal experience and some knowledge of the most recent eyeblink of human history where social custom made monogamy a more expected behavior. My anecdotal experience is far different from yours but that’s neither here nor there when it comes to monogamy in the human species. Something’s barking alright but it wasn’t me. -ds “
Denyse replies: That human history stretches back millions of years seems immaterial to me.
The history for which we have evidence features the following very important fact: Children are usually born singly and take a long time to grow up. (Typically 14 through 18 years in the last few millennia.
Even if children matured a bit earlier in previous millennia, how much earlier?
Indeed, it may well have been the opposite. In our current experience, we find that hardship actually RETARDS puberty, so it is quite possible that our hard-pressed Ice Age ancestors did not even mature as quickly as humans do today. And that might be one reason why their numbers grew so slowly.
For example, starving girls and women typically don’t menstruate. Hence they are much less likely to conceive. And if they die young, well … Historically, in tough times, women married later; there may be a relationship between that and later and irregular menstruation.
The long years of strenuous effort involved in raising even a single child must - alone - give potential parents pause for thought. I simply don’t know how googling a bunch of stuff can persuade me that a woman with enough survival smarts to leave healthy and socially acceptable offspring would not take great care about how she goes about acquiring a “bun in the oven.” If anything, that was a much more important concern in times long past than it is today.
Of course, it is possible that in an early stage in human history, people did not know how babies got started. But they could hardly have avoided knowing the circumstances under which babies thrive or don’t. Indeed, that might be the way we first began to learn HOW the babies get started.
cheers, Denyse
Toronto
cheers,
Denyse

You seem to be conflating genetic parentage with who raises the child. While this is usually one and the same for the woman it often isn’t for the man. Sexual fidelity and pair bonding are two different things. For millions of years of human existence people didn’t even know that sex and babies were connected. A very many species that pair bond for life don’t practice sexual fidelity. Sexual fidelity is a social custom in humans and compared to the total time humans have been around it’s not a very old custom. So if women are doing the nasty outside the pair bond one might ask what instinctual criteria drives the selection. I’m positing intelligence is one of those criteria and given that intelligence is what makes our species so special it makes perfect sense that intelligence is a powerful aphrodisiac for many women. Thus, while Einstein’s actions are in the end his personal responsibility it makes it tougher to remain sexually monogamous when women are throwing themselves at him. -ds

Comment by O'Leary — July 16, 2006 @ 3:23 pm

26. Lllith is something I always thought cooked up by “misogynistic men” i.e woman as a demon.
Of course, I always thought polygamy, assuming it was not warranted by circumstances, was a bit on the misogynistic side too. At least it certainly seems unadvantageous to you ladies.
Comment by tribune7 — July 16, 2006 @ 3:39 pm

27. OK, who left the door open and let the 19th century back in?
Comment by janiebelle — July 16, 2006 @ 3:39 pm

28. Hey tribune. Polygomy shouldn’t have to be misogynistic. What’s good for the gander should be good for the goose, right?
Oh, the comment above was for Denyse.
Comment by janiebelle — July 16, 2006 @ 3:41 pm

29. Tribune,
I see the point you’re making about Lilith. And it’s a valid one, the misogyny of her consorting with demons and all. But I’ve always thought of her as more heroic. She supposedly told Adam “I will not lie below” when he (very misogynistically) yacked about being superior and all.
She took the position of a strong woman, and said “eh, piss off, I don’t need you if you’re gonna be a jerk”.
That’s the part the church found too dangerous to let the masses hear, even if she was portrayed as a whore and a demon. “Don’t want them there womens gettin no idears or nuthin” (in Latin, of course)
I like Lilith.
Comment by janiebelle — July 16, 2006 @ 3:49 pm

30. ‘course Mom says I’m part demon…..
Comment by janiebelle — July 16, 2006 @ 3:52 pm

31. What? Little girl stood up to the self-loathing loud-mouthed women of the board and everybody ran for cover?
Sissies.
:)
Comment by janiebelle — July 16, 2006 @ 4:08 pm


32. Well then, I think I’ll just take my ball and go home. Since I’m the only one left, I declare myself the winner by default. You may all come to my blog and compliment me on my stunning rhetorical skills at your leisure.
Kisses,
JanieBelle
:)
Comment by janiebelle — July 16, 2006 @ 4:28 pm


33. Janiebelle — if you want to be wife #2 that’s cool.
I wouldn’t want to be husband #2.
Anyway, here’s the story of Lilith as per Wiki — http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lilith.
She appears to have come into our culture via the Babalyonians.
Comment by tribune7 — July 16, 2006 @ 4:39 pm

34. I must admit, even though I dismiss the majoritity of evolutionary psychology, there was one evolutionary researcher who actually made serious empirical observations which got my attention. Dr. Helen Fisher used brains scans to actually measure romantic feelings in her subjects.
Dr. Fisher was married at age 22 (or so) and got divoreced 6 months later, and thereafter went on a quest to understand what it was that drives people to love in the hope of finding what will make love last. Her lifelong quest to find lasting love made her one of the world’s experts on romantic love.
She has her Darwinian viewpoints as to why love evolved. Though I don’t agree with her view that love is a consequence of Darwinian evolution, her accounts of the theme of romance repeated in the biology of other creatures is fascinating. Evolutionary convergence at it’s best.
I give my alternate explantion at ARN:
Why We Love by Rutgers Antrhropologist Dr. Helen Fisher
I tie it to Bill Dembski’s post:
Legitimizing a Thoughtful Form of Anthropomorphism
Comment by scordova — July 16, 2006 @ 4:43 pm

35. BTW, in case anyone thought otherwise, evolutionary psychology is considered to be a psuedoscience by a large number of evolutionary biologists. Case in point, PZ Myers:
“[Evolutionary Psychology] is a controversial sub-discipline (despite some uninformed claims that it is the accepted doctrine of evolutionary biology) that attempts to explain modern behavior in terms of adaptive solutions to ancient problems in the human lineage. The idea has serious problems, in that it consists mainly of adaptationist just-so stories and bizarrely doctrinaire assumptions that many complex behaviors are driven by genetic predispositions—and those actual genetic mechanisms are not supported by any concrete evidence.”
http://pharyngula.org/index/weblog/comments/gould_on_ep/
Comment by BC — July 16, 2006 @ 4:49 pm

36. Tribune7
OK, we promised Dave we would behave here at this blog, but I can’t do that and say what I really need to say. My response to your little parting-shot-after-she’s-turned-her-back can be found at our blog.
Show up if you’ve got the mettle in your spine.
Comment by janiebelle — July 16, 2006 @ 6:04 pm

37. Maybe I just don’t get it, but it seems to me that there is an obvious, absolute, moral truth at issue here.
I have a wife to whom I have been married and faithful for almost 30 years, and I have two daughters. I would not even consider trying to seduce another man’s wife or daughters, for the same reason that I would be outraged if a scumbag like Richard Feynman tried to seduce mine.
Of course, I’m one of those hideously seditious and nefarious evangelical Christians who wants to establish a theocracy, so perhaps I’m just brainwashed.
Comment by GilDodgen — July 16, 2006 @ 10:47 pm

38. Gil, I don’t think we were talking about cheating. Cheating is a betrayal, a lie. I think what was at issue was non monogomous relationships between consenting adults absent other commitments in general.
Polygamy in general. If everyone involved is a consenting adult and is honest, what’s the issue?
Wherein lies the inherent moral depravity of that relationship that seems to be being suggested by previous posters?
Comment by janiebelle — July 16, 2006 @ 11:40 pm

39. Everyone - may I be so bold as to suggest that the intent of this post is not about the morality of polygamy/adultery/mistresses or it’s benefits/disbenefits as relating to geniuses but rather the false role evolutionary-psychology (the idiot-step child) has assumed in predicting this behavior from hindsight.
In fact most ‘proclamations’ trumpeted from the halls of evo-psycho have as much to do with science (and sometimes evolution itself) as the three stooges have to do with neuro-surgery. Every few month they come up with another corker just to remind themselves they exist and are important. Remember the one a month back about where laughter and humor originated??
Just a thought, use it - don’t use it.
Comment by lucID — July 17, 2006 @ 2:52 am

40. [From Denyse: (My last comment, as I msut get back to work:)
1) it is a fundamental demographic fact that children are a heavy long-term investment. I do not know of good evidence that they were ever otherwise for modern humans.
2) a creature unable to foresee something as obvious as that is not a modern human.
3) it is irrelevant whether women connect babies to sex. If they did not prevent them by abstinence, they can get rid of them by infanticide, thus removing them from the gene pool all the same.
4) Sole support moms have always had a low birth rate compared to married moms, and the human race would have died out a long time ago if it depended on their fertility.
5) Women have not usually been entirely free in their choice of mates, mainly on account of the high cost of investment in children. Women are most free when there is no question of children.
6) There is simply no evidence that women have usually preferred men of higher intelligence as such or are more willing to raise their babies. Skills and circumstances that produce wealth have always been much more important to most women, but these skills and circumstances correlate with many factors, not just intelligence. (Incidentally, far more women who rock with high-status men hook up with movie stars than mathematicians.)
7) There is no evidence that men of higher intelligence are consistently more fertile; evidence would seem to go the other way.
8) Higher intelligence is not necessarily heritable, but where it is, its outcomes are not predictable. Were Einstein’s sons great revolutionary physicists? cheers, Denyse]
2) a creature unable to foresee something as obvious as that is not a modern human.

There are a lot of women TODAY who are unable to foresee that. Maybe you should put a little more thought into this. -ds

Comment by O'Leary — July 17, 2006 @ 4:02 am

41. I think there are clearly idiots IN evo-psych but the concept that human experience shapes human behavior isn’t idiotic. It also seems clear that some human behaviors become heritable in the form of instincts. There doesn’t seem to be the first clue about a mechanism behind the heritability of behaviors. My bet is that somewhere in the vast expanse of DNA with no known function lie coded instructions for instinctual behaviors.
Comment by DaveScot — July 17, 2006 @ 6:05 am


Now, we're missing the next comment, we didn't expect the thread to get dumped and hadn't updated our copy. However, I had already cross posted my next comment to this blog:

2) a creature unable to foresee something as obvious as that is not a modern human.
This from the woman stuck in 1872? Perhaps modern is a word with which you are not familiar.
Here, let me help:
From the Free Dictionary
“mod·ern Pronunciation (mdrn)
adj.
1.
a. Of or relating to recent times or the present: modern history.
b. Characteristic or expressive of recent times or the present; contemporary or up-to-date: a modern lifestyle; a modern way of thinking.
2.
a. Of or relating to a recently developed or advanced style, technique, or technology: modern art; modern medicine.
b. Avant-garde; experimental.
3. often Modern Linguistics Of, relating to, or being a living language or group of languages: Modern Italian; Modern Romance languages.
n.
1. One who lives in modern times.
2. One who has modern ideas, standards, or beliefs.
3. Printing Any of a variety of typefaces characterized by strongly contrasted heavy and thin parts.”
Here’s another one:
“ar·cha·ic Pronunciation (är-kk) also ar·cha·i·cal (–kl)
adj.
1. also Archaic Of, relating to, or characteristic of a much earlier, often more primitive period, especially one that develops into a classical stage of civilization: an archaic bronze statuette; Archaic Greece.
2. No longer current or applicable; antiquated: archaic laws. See Synonyms at old.
3. Of, relating to, or characteristic of words and language that were once in regular use but are now relatively rare and suggestive of an earlier style or period.
[Greek arkhaikos, old-fashioned, from arkhaios, ancient, from arkh, beginning, from arkhein, to begin.]”
And I believe that should conclude our lesson on adjectives for the day, class.
Comment by janiebelle — July 17, 2006 @ 10:32 am

There were at least a few more comments, but it was shortly after this comment that the thread disappeared, as far as we can determine.




17 Eloquent Orations

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