Open Thread

Flashback OT: “For What It’s Worth”

I’m guessing everyone has associations with music, some good, some bad, some memories “just are.” There are songs I hear that make me think of meeting my husband, songs that make me remember being with Selena and Demeter in college, songs from high school, you get the idea.

There are also songs that make me think of childhood moments- I remember my mom singing Carly Simon’s “You’re So Vain” in our green Buick Skylark, I remember hearing “Horse with No Name” in the same car and really wondering what the hell that was all about.

Yesterday I heard Buffalo Springfield’s “For What It’s Worth” and was immediately transported back to my family’s living room circa the late 1970s. This video plays through my head every single time I hear this song. I kid you not.

So, how was your day? Feel free to discuss it, musical flashbacks or the Muppets as you see fit!


153 replies on “Flashback OT: “For What It’s Worth””

My computer is dying. It is taking me forever to do a few simple tweaks to my portfolio because my computer is so slow. Even typing this comment it froze for a bit twice! I want to kill it. But I need it. And I don’t want to have to decide between getting a car and getting a new computer.

ARGH. This should have taken me ten minutes and it has taken me two hours.

I grew up today.  I am really really pissed about it.  I went to a roller derby bout on Saturday which was all I needed to convince myself that I needed to be a roller derby queen.  I contacted the local team, got the info for their next tryouts, my husband was totally on board and supportive.  Then I ran the numbers.  Between the gear, league dues, and insurance I couldn’t afford it.  Actually, lemme clarify that.  I could totally afford it, but I couldn’t justify it.  My husband and I are just getting out of some major financial trouble.  We are almost done paying off some medical bills that just about sent us to debtors prison.  We no longer buy things we don’t need and we are saving money for the first time since we’ve been married.  I made an adult choice to not do something I wanted to do because it just wasn’t practical, and now I am acting like a teenager, crying and feeling sorry for myself.

That sucks, but I totally understand. I gave up my roller derby dreams when I found out that the most common injury for new derby skaters was broken wrists. I work with my hands, even if I could afford all the stuff, I can’t afford a broken wrist (though Slay Belle informs me that they make these things called ‘wrist guards’ if I ever change my mind…).

I say skate your ass off, get in lots of practice and save some pennies. There’s always next year.

Would it help to try out anyway? (unless you need to pay all this money upfront, in which case, ignore me). Just to see what level you’re at, if you like the people, and what you have to practice on? You never know, if they want you they may be able to offer reduced-price gear or something, and in any case no harm to have your face in their minds for trying out when you can afford it.

I thought about that.  They do have some open practice-and-see-if-you-like-it times strewn throughout the year that I may check out.  I also downloaded the basic skills test that one would need to pass before being able to actually bout.  Now, in the light of day, it really makes more sense to step into this slowly.  I do thank you all for listening to me pout like a spoiled teenager!

Aw, I don’t think you were being unreasonable about it. It really sucks to want to do something so badly and then run into money troubles that, at first glance, seem to prevent you from doing it.

I’m glad there’s other options! With how excited you were over this, it would be a shame to not at least do SOMETHING related to it. :)

Sesame Street had this one random song were a bunch of drops of water danced around telling kids not to waste water.  I don’t even remember how the song goes, but I know it had the line “are you a waste of brew?” several times throughout it.  Since then, every time I see a leaky faucet I have the chorus “are you a waste of brew?” get stuck in my head.  It’s pretty random since I’m pretty sure that’s the only song I remember from YEARS of Sesame Street, and I think I saw it when I was <5 yrs old.

I def didn’t get brew from The Muppet Show. I know this only because I would also picture the water drops dancing around at the same time singing it.

Did they really discuss beer preferences on The Muppet Show? I had very limited TV growing up (Sesame St and Mr. Rogers) so I really have no idea what The Muppet Show is about, but I did think it was more family oriented?

So, normally, I agree that a lot of people share way too much on Facebook, but I don’t think this example was an overshare at all, and I wish more people would talk about the issue in general.  This morning, a sorta-friend-not-really-she-is-full-of-drama-and-makes-me-tired-but-still- posted something along the lines of getting justice and never letting a man lay a hand on her again.  Given her history with boyfriends, I am super confident that she’s been in a domestic violence situation, and I’m really glad that she’s handling it and being strong and not letting this guy get away with it or control her.

But then, some douchebag replies, asking if she’s become a lesbian and why would she post something so personal on Facebook?


Her post was so obviously about a guy hurting her.  I can’t believe anyone could be so freaking insensitive and flippant.  WTF is wrong with people?

He may not realize she was talking about abuse – a lot of people don’t think it happens to the people they know, “their type of people”, etc.  Although I have to say, I don’t understand if one realized/decided that one was a lesbian, why you wouldn’t put that on FB.  Isn’t that the easiest way to update everyone in your family/friends without having to have a lot of awkward conversations?

I had to work at my stupid side job tonight. Even though it was only three hours, it was pretty terrible. I have dealt with more awful human beings, adult or child, in the last two days than I have in the last two months. It was so bad I stopped at Krispy Kreme on the way home and ate two doughnuts in my car by myself before I even walked in the door, which is sad, sad emotional eating. I really hope I hear back from that interview I had for a lovely full-time teaching job.

Oh god, I feel you. Some jobs are just legitimately THAT AWFUL. I had to quit the only work I could find in the eight months or so in my undergrad-to-gradschool transition. Even though I needed the money. Even though I had only been there six weeks. Because it was a telesurvey job and it fucking. sucked.

Good luck with the teaching job. Escaping shitty job situations is the best!

And as for the donuts, I wouldn’t worry about it too much. Maybe you needed the comfort.

Side effects of not submitting one or more word lists to my Mad Libs may include:

  • Coming home one day to find all of your favorite comfortable clothing has shrunk down to doll size.
  • Being doggedly romanced by Newt Gingrich.
  • Being taken to small claims court by your cat.

You lose and are forced to pay your cat $3500. Your cat uses the money to go to Bermuda—without you. You will sit at home, alone, uncomfortable and/or nude, clutching a pair of six-inch yoga pants, sobbing, and Newt Gingrich won’t stop calling you.

Submit your words: Mad Lib 3; Mad Lib 4; Mad Lib 5.

Every time I make this one particular steak sandwich recipe, I want to take the beef + sauce base and make stroganoff. Which I’ve never made in my life. But the idea of this particular nommy steak-flavour + creamy noodles + peas sounds AMAZING.

I spent today being overtired when I should have been at work. This weekend kinda wasn’t- I worked all Saturday, then drank at a friend’s house and only crashed out for a few hours. Sunday was spent ENTIRELY at church interviewing prospective ministers until 9:30pm. So tiring. So I called in sick and essentially didn’t move from my bed. I feel much better now. I did accomplish one thing- I finished the Hunger Games trilogy! Check that off the required reading list!

You know what I remember? The Muppet Babies.

Today was all right, much better than it could have been. Kind of stressful, but the weather was nice so that made up for it. I’m currently watching Portlandia while drinking Diet Pepsi. It’s good right now.


I know there’s been a bunch of stomach flus going around (I caught 2 this season! I never get stomach flus!) Hopefully it’s just that and it will go away. I’m sorry you have to deal with it though. :(

Is it possible for you to ask around and see if there’s a stomach flu making the rounds in your area?

Oh, man. The house I grew up in has to be torn down. This is bringing up so many feelings. Mostly, crushing sadness. I lived in that house for the first 18 years of my life. I know every inch of that place, every creak and groan of the floors, the way the screen door banged when you let it go. It was built well over a hundred years ago, and it cared for so many families, and now it’s at the point where nobody can rehabilitate it and they’re just going to pick it apart for scraps like a chicken carcass before they demolish it.

Ugh. I feel so fucking depressed.

Aw man, that sucks. The house I lived in as a child burned down. I was living around the corner at the time. I can remember watching it go up in flames and being super sad about it. And it wasn’t even a nice house. It was a crappy duplex with ugly yellow siding that we rented the front half of. Many sympathies.

Thank you. I wish I could say that it was this other family who bought the place and let it go to ruin, but unfortunately it was my own parents. They fixed up the smaller house on the property when the bigger house started falling apart with the notion of redoing the bigger house, but lack of money/time made it impossible for them to do anything with it. I has the sads for sure.

Also, I can’t imagine watching your own childhood home go up in flames. That must have been terrible.

I’m pretty excited because I heard back and I got into the grad program I applied to. I was so nervous since I only applied to one program, and I can still hardly believe it. I kept worrying that it was a mistake, but since I heard by email and communicated with the grad director I guess it must be real. To get to the point, I know a number of people here are in grad school, or have gone through grad school, so any advice?

Grad school: the hardest thing I’ve ever done and always made me feel like I wasn’t good enough the whole time I was in it, but so worth it after it was done. For me, it helped me hone my career choice into something different than what I actually entered school for. So my advice: work really hard, take every opportunity you can and be open to unexpected things.


@Ailanthus-altissima wrote this article just the other day on some things they don’t really tell you but are really really good to know in grad school.

Also, if they haven’t told you about funding opportunities, you should look into that stat. There isn’t really anything in the way of US federal grad school support other than loans, so scholarships (third-party or otherwise), fellowships, and department funding are essential. Especially at a private school, grad school can be fucking expensive.

Especially when you first start getting involved, you want to go to as many department gatherings as possible. Grad school isn’t the same environment as undergrad; since it’s usually smaller, it’s a lot closer-knit. Make connections, especially with the people who make decisions such as who gets funding, etc. Try to find someone who is willing to help mentor you. I can’t stress that enough!

Also, at times you will feel completely inferior and like you shouldn’t be there. That happens to all of us. Try your best to ignore it. Those voices speak lies.

Thank you both so much! Luckily I’m in Canada, so tuition is a lot more manageable, and they have offered me decent funding. And in the fall I can apply for government grants for next year. That article looks pretty helpful, and thanks for the reminder that everyone worries about not being good enough. It’s something I’ve struggled with off and on through undergrad and the application process, and I do need to try a little harder to have more confidence.

Ah! My apologies for assuming US residency.

There’s a phrase I heard about the progression of feeling like you know shit:

When you’re an undergrad, you think you know everything. When you’re a graduate student, you realize you know nothing. And when you get your doctorate, you realize no one knows anything.

Some people don’t really have that first step, but I see it happen this way an awful lot.

So my neighbor across the street is driving me crazy.  We have (what I assumed was) street parking in neighborhood, but there are no curbs.  In front of our house, and my neighbor across the street’s house are area’s filled with gravel to delineate between yard and road.  Tonight, my sister was dropping something off to me, so her boyfriend pulled over in front of the neighbor’s house while my sister and I were chatting in front of my house.  The neighbor came out and yelled at her boyfriend!  And this is not the first time they’ve done that.  She even went so far to tell my sister that she’s friends with the cops.

I just went to bitch about this to my boyfriend and he was all like, it’s private property.  Which it’s totally not!  It’s street parking!  Anyone can park anywhere!  Ugh, I am so irrationally mad about this!

HAHA! My mom’s neighborhood is all street parking. The neighbor across the street from her is kind of crazy pants. A friend was coming to pick me up one night and he parked in front of her house. He came in while I looked for my keys and in the 2 minutes he was out of his car, she came over to tell him she was having a get together and he couldn’t leave his car parked in front of her house. We just stared awkwardly at her and told her the car would be gone in 5 minutes if she could wait that long. I definitely wanted to just start parking in front of her house all the time after that.

Ugh you guys, today unmitigatingly sucked. I had a particularly nasty migraine today, threw off my sleeping patterns, and then on my way to buying painkillers from the Tesco near my house, ran into someone I fancied for three years. I should point out I looked like vomit because migraine and no shower and hoodie comfy clothes. So we get into a very halting conversation, I explain I have a migraine, and then this guy turns around and goes

“Really?! I totally thought you were faking back then. Well, everyone did. Oo, here’s my turning, bye!”

So now I’m in a huddle feeling like shit. And I’m out of caffeine. And there isn’t even any tea. WATER THOUGH, WHOOP-FUCKING-EE.

The idea of assuming someone is faking over something like that makes me so mad.


And this also applies to any other sort of “invisible” chronic ailment.

I have chronic migraines, as does one of my coworkers, and the number of people who use “migraine” as a substitute for “bad headache” makes me furious. We were just saying the other day that we wouldn’t wish migraines on our worst enemies, but that a lot of people have no freaking clue that it’s not a bad headache.

I totally understand. I remember wondering how bad a migraine really was, having had terrible headaches before. I was told they weren’t migraines, so I refrained from saying so…but I had no real experience to show me what it was like.

And then I had one.

Holy motherfucking christ.

I’m glad I did, though, because now I “get it” on a far more personal level.

I got so much done today. Took Girl Dog to the vet, where they told me her ear infection was nearly cleared up, so we’ll be going back once she’s done with the antibiotics for another chest X-ray to see about her heart and the risks for her cancer surgery, so it was a generally positive visit. Did the grocery shopping, cleaned the floors, made a semi-healthy dinner, and took a nice afternoon nap. Now I’m bracing myself to go back to work tomorrow.

My day was…interesting. I went to talk to a professor at 11am, and she found out she had to pick up her sick daughter from school. So, she asked me to fill in for her…in the class I’m taking. It was either that or cancel class! She asked me if I had read it yet, and I said no; I was planning to read it after meeting with her. But she asked to do it anyway so…what could I do other than say yes? You don’t say no to the chair of the graduate department when she asks you for something like that. And it’s very flattering that she thought well enough of me to even ask…despite the knowledge that I hadn’t even read the assignment yet!

So, I frantically outlined the article and charted some of the arguments. I only had a couple hours before class, so it’s all I had time to do. I figured I’d treat it like a class presentation, since that’s how she seemed to think of it. So, I ended up talking about it for about 40 minutes, periodically answering questions to help clarify.

She mentioned she wanted a lot of discussion…and when I got to that part shit went bad. There’s a person in my class who I don’t like, because I feel like sometimes he goes out of his way to shoot down what I say. He’s sort of rude about it normally. But nothing compared to how rude he was today. Discussion turned extremely venomous. I couldn’t stop it. I wasn’t the PhD. I didn’t have very much authority.

Afterward, a couple people came up and told me they thought I did a great job, which thank god(s) they did. Cause I was terrified I fucked up. When I left, the rude person was waiting for me…and he did that thing where he sort of apologizes for being rude, but then he tries to lay out why he was “justified” for doing so. I wish I had called him more on his shit while he was doing it. I’m too much of a conflict-avoidance sort of person sometimes. But I also didn’t realize he was flat-out trying to bully me.

I’ve been talking to Mr. Silverwane a lot about what went down. And that’s how he put it: even though this dude wasn’t seemingly intending to bully, that was what he was doing. It felt like he was trying to take me down a few pegs. It’s felt like he’s been trying to take me down a few pegs. One way or another, he was trying to intimidate me into feeling like I was inferior, like I shouldn’t have tried to do the class, like I did it wrong, like everything I said was wrong, like I handled questions wrong…so on and so forth.

It’s funny, because when I put it like that I don’t quite understand why I didn’t immediately see it for the bullying it was.

The red flags should have probably gone off immediately when, upon talking to me after the debacle, one of the first ways he went about it was saying “Well, I’m kind of a dick.”


“Well, I’m kind of a dick.”

oh good lord I hate that.

congratulations on your great feedback! it sounds like you worked hard with what you were given and the short time you had. and really, what more could your prof have asked of you? and like you said, it’s flattering that she would ask you to take over even though you hadn’t done the reading… that is such a compliment to your intelligence and your competence!

I am sorry for your douchebag experience though. the “well I’m a huge jerk, what can ya do?” types are the worst. if it had been me dealing with his attacks I would have turned bright red and stammered and hoped someone in the class would take pity on me and say “What I think 5P is trying to say is…”. and after-the-fact fake apologies never make it better. he probably has realized he is a whole lot stupider than you are but doesn’t know how to handle the news.

but I do hope you will take comfort in the positive feedback you received! also would the prof be someone you could talk to/commiserate with about Jerkface Man? maybe she has noticed his behaviour, or maybe (if you like teaching and want to do more of it) give advice on how to combat it?


Aw, thank you. :)

And yeah, I don’t know. I feel like this particular guy has been trying to shoot me down all the time. I don’t want to be like “I’m smarter than him,” or “I’m more capable than him,” cause I’m surrounded by smart capable people, and I wouldn’t dare say I was better! Maybe, though, he feels threatened by me…hence his awful behavior.

I am, and do feel a lot better after realizing his behavior was bullying. I’m planning on talking to the professor about how the class went; I’m sure she wants to know, anyway. And if she has any advice to give, that would be awesome.

Ugh, he sounds like kind of a jerk. I think it’s understandable that you didn’t realize what was going on until today. I think it’s sometimes hard to admit that certain behaviours are bullying. It can be hard to escape the mindset that bullying is what happens in grade school, even though it definitely happens throughout life. I also think in a lecture situation it’s really easy to just put that kind of behaviour down to someone who is passionate but has different views, even if it’s actually bullying. Either way, what a great vote of confidence that the professor had you lead the class! It sounds like it went well, even with this guy’s behaviour.

It was definitely a hard realization that it was bullying behavior. Once I realized that…it made sense. It made a fuckton of sense.

And I agree, with a lecture, maybe he was just really concerned with making sure everything was “right.” But the thing was, he wouldn’t have been nearly so rude when authorities were around. He hasn’t been that rude before when he’s virulently disagreed. The question was, why was he that rude then? I felt like it all came down to jealousy and bullying. And fuck that noise. Petty people suck.

From what I’ve gathered, the class feedback to her will be positive. Which is definitely awesome. I hope I don’t get asked to do that again for a class he’s part of, though. I mean, if I’m asked again…I’ll do it. But I’ll have to take very concerted precautions to deal with him.

Hah! Yeah, I tried to tell him that. I think, even in his “apology,” he was still more concerned with justifying his behavior than really apologizing to me.

So, it basically means, he felt at least a little contrite, but he didn’t want to admit he was wrong.

There are two arts of measuring—one is concerned with relative sugar, and the other has reference to a mean or standard of flour. The difference between good cookies and evil cookies is the difference between a mean or measure and excess or defect. All baked goods require to be compared, not only with one another, but with the mean, without which there would be no beauty and no cookie-related arts, whether the art of shortening or the art of gluten-free baking or any other; for all these arts must guard against excess sugar or defective flour measurement, which are real evils. This we must endeavour to show, if the cookies are to exist; and the proof of this will be a harder piece of work than the demonstration of the existence of not-being which we proved in our discussion about the Sophist Bakery. At present I am content with the indirect proof that the existence of such a standard is necessary to the existence of the cookies. The standard or measure, which we are now only applying to the cookies, may be some day required with a view to the demonstration of absolute truth.

We may now divide this art of measurement into two parts; placing in the one part all the sugars which help to measure the relative size or number of chips, and in the other all those flours which depend upon a mean or standard. Many accomplished men say that the art of measurement has to do with all recipes, but these persons, although in this notion of theirs they may very likely be right, are apt to fail in seeing the differences of cookies—they jumble together in one the ‘more sugar’ and the ‘too much flour,’ which are very different things.

@maus …Did you just do a cookie-related Mad-lib style treatise??


Est Platonis dialogum Politicus et pistor magna philosophiae. Graeco sermone non memini. Fiat latine sufficere.

(Oh shit! I need to open a prep school, just so it can have the motto Fiat latine sufficere.)

I know exactly the kind of person you mean; one of those idiot twats who thinks he’s really brave for being un P.C. when he’s just being rude, and who enjoys using the adjective “blunt” to describe himself. Meanwhile, his half-formed embryonic ideas are nowhere close to being as intelligent as he thinks they are because he’s a moron, but what they do succeed in doing is harshing everyone’s mellow so that nobody feels as confident contributing any more. Then he complains about the teacher after he didn’t do the reading and is generally a fuckmouse who needs to be stepped on.

Haha, so fucking yes.

I don’t know if he’s *completely* this person. He seems to read thoroughly, and he seems like an intelligent person, but he also seems to think he’s better than other people. Oh, and he namedrops other philosophers/philosophical works/philosophical ideas CONSTANTLY. Like, at an obnoxious level.

I feel like he’s constantly trying to show off.

It’s really annoying, actually.

Ugh! I hate people like that, and it seems like grad school is full of them. I think  some people enact the crushing insecurity that everyone has in grad school by becoming giant egotistical assholes. I know a fellow  young scholar  who always justifies arrogant  and rude behavior by saying “well, I’m just a bitch.” There are times, definitely, when I want to reply with, “yup, you’re sure right about that!” (I don’t though.)

Ugh. That majorly sucks. One of my friends is working on her Master’s in English, and she has misogynist archenemy that has been in quite a few classes with her. He does the exact same thing. He challenges her on ridiculous points, one of which was, “Why are men emasculated all the time? Seriously. I’m sick of all the men being emasculated.” and then sends her facebook messages about how he’s a total dick and has relationship problems. We were actually just talking about him today. It really sucks when you can’t escape it in class, too. You’re stuck with them! Good luck! And like everyone else said, focus on the positive. More than likely, everyone else realized he was being an asshat, too.

Fucking hell, that is TERRIBLE.

It definitely seemed like nearly every other person in the class thought he was a complete twatface. I feel a tiny victory in this. It’s like, if his reputation has been damaged because of this, people are more likely to deny him accolades. Cause ability doesn’t matter half as much in academia as reputation, sad as that is.

I probably shouldn’t get any satisfaction out of that, but I do.

your sweetheart is 100% right.  especially his after class ‘apology’ – all i hear in that is *pat on the head* “Sorry little girl that I gave you such a rough time.  Keep trying, sport – you’ll be able to keep up with me someday.”  Patronizing, bullying piece of shit.  I have zero patience for those people.

Musicology (music history and theory), it’s weird because it is definitely a humanities field so one would think it would be more liberal, but music itself is SO bound up in tradition (some orchestras like the Vienna Phil just started hiring women) that it is definitely hard to have a voice if you aren’t a white dude.

Ahh yeah, philosophy is similar. When I was younger, I never realized it was a “masculine” “white” field. For some reason it never clicked that there was a reason why we only tended to talk about dead white (or possibly tan Mediterranean) dudes. I think since it was supposed to be all about “thought” and such rather than physical actions, it seemed at the time to be more “feminine.”

Boy, was I wrong!

ok – two more points, then I must force myself to go to sleep:

1) don’t you ever, ever, ever get thicker skin.  being thin skinned means that you are an emotive, emotionally healthy person who is capable of recognizing an entire continuum of injustice when it is directed at yourself or someone else.  thin skinned people change the world because they notice crappy things and are unable to stand by and watch them occur.

2) i think we buried the lead a bit here: you were asked to teach the class – of your peers – with no foreknowledge of the material.  you are so bad ass, chuck norris takes lessons from you.

1) That is a great great point. I’ve never really heard it put like that…I’ve heard all my life that I have to learn not to be so “sensitive.” And when it comes to taking things personally, I used to do that far too much…but it is definitely fishy when the person being incredibly rude to you comments on your “thin skin.”

2) Aww, you’re sweet. :)

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