Activity from jessamyn

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Reflections after a friend's suicide
Awww, I am sorry. This is not about suicide but about the idea of grief and keeping the people we care about in our hearts. Have you read The Lovely Bones? The protagonist is a murder victim (no really over the top murder scenes in the book, it nearly all happens after that) and the storyline is about her spirit sort of being kept alive by people remembering her. It's a bit more complex than that and the theme isn't really original, but it's a nice treatment of the idea of a complicated loss… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 12:58 PM on April 26, 2017
There is also this essay by Russell Brand about loving someone with a problem (in this case Amy Winehouse and her addiction)
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 1:15 PM on April 26, 2017

Children's books that encourage questioning everything
The biggest deal for me was reading a lot of books that had kids that were not at all like me, so part of this is defining what "not like them" is. Ezra Jack Keats books about young black children who lived in cities were useful to have for me, for example. Many of these are classics that hold up. I think Little House on the Prairie can be good for these reasons. And, of course, Hunger Games.

Free to Be You and Me holds up for the most part (with a few notable… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 10:02 AM on April 26, 2017

How daily my anxious life. How do I stop becoming this person?
it is better if I not become dependent on them. She has suggested thinking positive thoughts to counter the negative ones

When people tell me things like this, I ask if they have any first person experience with clinical depression or anxiety. Dependency can be difficult, sure, but it's nothing like the hell on earth that sitting around catatonic with panic can be. I have said this many times in AskMe but I will say it again for good measure: the… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 7:25 PM on April 25, 2017

Recent stats/data on how libraries prevent destitution/homelessness?
If you don't mind reading through stories and not always data, the American Library Association's Hunger Homelessness and Poverty Task Force has a fairly updated blog as well as a list of resources that are a little US-centric (and a little out of date for some of it) but probably the best US collection you are likely to find. In the UK sometimes the good googleable terms are "social inclusion/exclusion" Also seconding Pew and IFLA as good places to check.
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 4:26 PM on April 25, 2017

Help me find a specific article?
Looks like there are two articles with that title in that book's citations. One is online here and doesn't have that content. Manhattan Inc ceased publication in 1990 (though continued on as M Inc) and you can check Worldcat to see if there is a library near you that has archives. None of the libraries I have access to have it electronically.
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 9:36 AM on April 25, 2017

For the sake of the kids: diplomacy edition
My mother-in-law decided any help she offers will be in the form of taking my breastfed infant out of state for a month until I can have other arrangements in place.

Unless you are desperate and need to do this for those reasons, this is just a "thanks but no thanks" situation if I am reading your question correctly. However, I'm having a hard time parsing what you are saying and it seems like there is a lot going… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 2:45 PM on April 24, 2017

Cape Cod MA or Fernandina Beach FL?
I think you're going to find the Cape a little remote for you and you might want to look at the other side of the bridge? My dad retired to Westport MA which is a little retirement town on the South Coast of MA. I'm not sure I'd suggest there specifically (it's spendy) but the South Coast will get you a lot more in terms of public transportation options and New England culture but also navigable roads and beaches in the summertime. Cape Cod in summer is a zoo. You might want to look at some of… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 8:13 AM on April 24, 2017

Traditional cable TV experience without traditional cable TV?
It seems like you've explored options. It's unclear from your question if this is happening at one house or at multiple houses? My suggestion is based on one house.

If this were my family member I would consider spending the $20-30/mo that cable costs to set it up in the guest house a remarkably low price for peace of mind. Or have them pay for it if it's really a money thing. This is about what services like Sling or Playstation VUE would cost you. TVs are basically… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 7:53 PM on April 23, 2017

Help me bird
If you live somewhere where this is okay, a simple window feeder is a great way to figure out what's nearby you and get to see birds up close. Or even have a few feeders, depending on what your house is like. I live in a second floor apartment and I have a suet feeder and a squirrel-proof canister-type feeder and a home made window feeder that I made from some suction cups and a soda bottle. I regularly have anywhere from 3-12 different kinds of birds come by. After a while you get really used… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 3:31 PM on April 23, 2017 marked best answer

Restaurant complaint etiquette
I am actually not a complainer though...I negotiate.

Yeah I feel like "complain" may be not as accurate as just making sure everyone is holding up their end of the arrangement.

I have a friend we sometimes call Customer Service Karen because she is very nitpicky about how service is at various restaurants, especially when she is hungry. And she'll sometimes bitch which makes me sort of cringe. It might be more… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 9:59 AM on April 23, 2017

Working remotely from NYC
When I need to do this, I'm usually at the SIBL branch of NYPL. Comfy chairs, cubbies for working, good internet. OK for everything but teleconferences (imo).
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 12:59 PM on April 21, 2017

What do you see when you turn out the light?
Caucasian, Ashkenazi Jewish descent.

Hey me too! And I get the whoosh sometimes (and, like Metroid Baby I can sometimes make it happen on its own) and other times not. I never get the "ears turn off" thing. When I close my eyes it's like it's dark out at night but I can make out shapes sort of moving around slowly. In fact one of my get-to-sleep maneuvers is to slowly follow the patterns around behind my eyelids (usually amorphous blobs but… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 11:20 AM on April 21, 2017

How to get unstuck.
The two things that seem at issue here are the "I can't control this" aspects of your personalities. For you the crying and for her the shutting down/blackout rage stuff. These conflict. If it's true that both of you can't control these things at all, then yes, cut and run.

My sister is a cryer. I am someone who basically can't deal with crying. (admittedly, we are not married, but I say this just to explain that I have some empathy for your wife also). When… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 6:25 PM on April 15, 2017
With kindness, I think you may have buried the lede where you were in another controlling abusive relationship before this one, and that there is a child involved.

It can be hard to break the cycle of being with people who are wrong for you but it's absolutely a cycle that should be broken. This relationship is no good for you. Your partner is showing no signs of being willing to work on things. Consider calling a domestic abuse hotline for tips on an exit strategy. I'm… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 10:56 AM on April 21, 2017 marked best answer

Laptop under $1000 for college kid
Just FYI but you could get a refurbed Mac laptop for just a little more than that. That said a refurbed Dell would be half that and a lower end laptop would be under $200. So it might be worth adjusting your search from "$999 laptop that last four years" to "$150 laptop that last two years and then I'll buy another $150 laptop"

Does your kid know the Windows environment? As far as shopping, I usually go to DealNews' laptop section just to get an idea… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 8:04 PM on April 20, 2017

Short story about an alien boy?
Alan Mendelson, The Boy from Mars by Daniel Pinkwater.

That book is amazing but it is not this book.
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 3:16 PM on April 20, 2017

My own response to spouse's yelling/anger
She and I agree re. what behaviors should mean a time out or a loss of privileges, and we're both the bad cop with those. I just don't think real yelling from adults should be part of discipline or part of family life.

You are correct. This is abuse. People who grew up in abusive households where they were actually hit sometimes view their own "only yelling" as an improvement and may not understand that it, too, is abusive behavior. I… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 11:11 AM on April 20, 2017

Wedding-safe '70s and '80s cheesiness.
Was just coming here to say, I was at Funspot on Monday and they played a lot of Wham! It's also a good time for some 80s metal if you can stand stuff like Steppenwolf/Born to be Wild or Motorhead's "Please Don't Touch"
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 5:02 PM on April 19, 2017

Help Me Ace My Library Page Interview
The only thing I would add to the excellent suggestions above is make sure you know the library's privacy policies in terms of patron information. Some libraries are very serious about not disclosing what a patron has been reading/looking at (and in some libraries this extends to children and in some it does not) and it's probably worth giving it a once over not so you can memorize it but so that you can show that you, too, care about this stuff and will endeavor to support and promote those… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 7:03 AM on April 18, 2017 marked best answer
The thing you talk about being difficult doesn't have to be a job thing, it could just be a life-thing. What they want to know, usually, is that you have some problem solving capacities and are maybe a little bit flexible in how you manage difficult situations, can work with people, general stuff. They don't want to hear you telling a story about something FREAKING YOU OUT (for the most part) or a story where you talk a lot of shit about another co-worker or (worse) a patron. As a shelver,… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 6:01 PM on April 18, 2017 marked best answer

How many cats makes a crazy cat lady?
First an answer to your stated question: the crazy cat lady danger zone is above N+1. That is, when you have one more cat than people that is enough cats usually. This doesn't mean it's wrong or a problem but just... that is the fact. Three cats for two people. So you're fine there.

Realistically I think you have a choice but this is going to have more to do with your roommate than anything else because it seems like that is the bigger deal. And have an honest chat with… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 1:55 PM on April 18, 2017

Things to do alone on your birthday
The first thing I think of here is BATHTUB (I mean, if you have one). What I would be doing is loading up on goo and weird smelling stuff and

- making sure my bathroom was clean
- lighting candles and maybe some incense
- having clean towels and maybe a robe to get into
- having ice cubes so I could have some ice water at the ready
- playing the music that I like and having a real-paper book to read
- having my… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 1:36 PM on April 18, 2017

Intermittent fasting diet is making me sleepy but unable to sleep!
When I've read up on the 5:2 people have usually talked about sleep issues being a problem for them and suggested something low cal but maybe with a bit of sugar (carrots, apples, cucumbers) as a right-before-dinner thing to quiet the stomach.
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 10:21 AM on April 18, 2017

How do leftist anarchists engage with current politics?
Libertarians in the US are different from Anarchists in that they usually believe "the market" is the way to level playing fields and get things to work out. So you don't need environmental regulations because better companies will naturally achieve more market share blabity bla. I am handwaving broadly but the difference between the hands-offness of Anarchism and the hands-offness of Libertarianism is that Anarchism isn't anti-governance, it's anti-governance from without and often… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 10:19 AM on April 18, 2017 marked best answer

Another reckless bird question
It's fighting with itself. Can you soap up the window just for a day (on the outside) so it basically can't see its reflection? Just drag a bar of soap around it in irregular zigzags. Will come off with a hose or in the next rainstorm.
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 9:57 AM on April 18, 2017

Silence, not sheep.
I travel with a white noise machine usually, though I use the one on my phone as a backup. This is one I've been looking at but not yet gone all-in and purchased yet. I'm lucky enough to be able to sleep with earplugs and it does seem like you might want to try a few more different kinds, including those wax ones which mostly go outside your ear and not in your ear canal.

Sleep hygiene is the big thing, of course, but for me the big travel game-changer was flat out… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 7:09 AM on April 18, 2017

Older Dog, Bigger Crate?
I would need to see a photo of Tiny Dictator to be certain of the answer to this question.
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 12:20 PM on April 16, 2017

Best advice from an old fogy
My father was a stay-at-home drunk in his retirement, sitting on the couch and making an awful lot of pronouncements about how other people, including me, should live their lives. Two pieces of advice he gave me were worth more to me later than they were at the time.

1. When I was detailing the minutiae of a failed relationship ["well and then he said THIS ... and then he did THAT..."] defending why it was okay that it was over (tho it was not my choice) he… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 6:17 AM on April 16, 2017

Recommendation for good book for public readout (Banned Books Week)?
The big news this year is that the top five books on 2016's banned/challenged list have been put there because of GLBTQ themes. That is, in the political environment we find ourselves in, people want to keep people (especially younger people) from reading books with gay themes. If you want to work on First Amendment themes you can have them read stuff that people might find offensive saying out loud, something with really explicit or even sexist/racist words in it (be careful, this can be a… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 6:30 PM on April 14, 2017

Tipping Business Owners
This is a thing about which reasonable people disagree. A lot depends on whether you 100% know they are the business owner and not, for example, someone who is self-employed and leasing the space or something (examples often given are for barbers). I usually tip if the service is good. We have a family-run-and-owned Chinese food restaurant in my neighborhood in which I am literally waited on by a ten year old and I don't tip there (and I usually just go for takeout now anyhow).
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 6:17 PM on April 14, 2017

In need of a book to be obsessed with
I don't feel like it's too much heavy-lifting but it might be borderline but Richerd Powers sometimes does this for me and The Gold Bug Variations might do it for you. The Time Traveler's Wife, if you haven't read it, is good for that full-heart feeling.

Seconding Little Big (and Aegypt) and Winter's Tale and maybe adding The English Patient or Housekeeping.

I don't know if these books work for anyone who isn't a Vermonter but Howard Frank… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 2:45 PM on April 14, 2017 marked best answer

Well-meaning friend gives Easter flowers that poisoned our cat.
I don't feel comfortable asking friend to help pay for this vet bill, but I feel like if I were in their shoes, I would absolutely offer to help.

That would be the better etiquette move, even a token, but it's not how everyone would handle it and I don't think it's one of those mandated etiquette moves where your friend is a jerk for not doing it. They didn't know. You have ultimate responsibility for what your pet consumes. I think you have to let this one go. I am glad your cat is okay.
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 10:20 AM on April 14, 2017
Friend was present as the whole scene unfolded and we both realized the flowers would harm the cat; the cat would have to go to the ER.

The only scenario I can see where this is friend's responsibility is if friend brought the flowers into your house when you were not home and left them there for the cat to eat. With your additional details it's still unclear

- did friend know the flowers were bad for the cat beforehand?… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 10:42 AM on April 14, 2017 marked best answer

Gypsy/ Sinti&Roma culture
Latcho Drom is wonderful and Bury Me Standing is very evocative. I found Gadjo Dilo very hard to watch but the music is great. Jaqueline Winspear writes lady detective novels set in the early 1900s and one of them features the Roma fairly centrally. I winced going into it (because it's pretty easy to use Roma casually as stereotype characters and it's rarely done well) but I thought it was pretty good. Book is called An Incomplete Revenge. Similarly Deanna Raybourn has a mystery series The Lady… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 7:27 AM on April 13, 2017

How to do damage control after a job offer mistakenly made
Well sounds like there are two separate issues

1. Is colleague actually allowed to hire interns? Like, I am unclear if the issue is they did this without your okay (not cool but that's an internal issue you work out with coworker) or if they did this without the actual authority to do this (totally against the rules)

So if it's the first, you and coworker need to work this out and maybe the intern gets hired as an outside edge case. If it's the… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 10:15 AM on April 12, 2017 marked best answer
"Thanks for your follow up emails. You've asked good questions, ones that we covered already during our initial interview.

The first thing in this email needs to be an apology for the screw up and a very very clear outline that there is a retraction of the offer that your colleague made but that the candidate is still in the running. Your email does not do that.

Also I would not have any sort of "We said this in the… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 12:43 PM on April 12, 2017 marked best answer

How do people engaged in voter suppression justify it to themselves?
I work the polls in my town, get paid to do so, and I think everyone should be able to vote all the time, so that is where I am coming from.

However, elections cost money, staffing polling areas costs money. The big thing is whether you feel the onus is on the person VOTING to make the effort to jump through the hoops in order to participate or whether it's on the people running the voting system to get the widest possible engagement. My take, as someone who actually… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 11:29 AM on April 12, 2017 marked best answer

Is there an obligation to like certain culture if one is "smart"?
I'm worried that my tastes in particular are incongruent with those of a supposedly smart person.

I have this problem! And at some level the issue comes down to "according to whom?" Like, culture is basically some sort of shared agreement of what people do/believe/feel. So, yes, there are definitely people who believe in highbrow/lowbrow distinctions who are in positions of power (I am in the US, can't speak to other countries). It's also… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 9:41 AM on April 10, 2017
the bulk of my discussion has concerned a different, greater obsession/anxiety that I'm not really going to expand upon because that's not relevant to this discussion.

Obsessional thoughts, particularly ones that are intrusive and cause you a lot of worry and concern are likely part of the same general package. I know that to your brain these thoughts feel rational and that you can just suss out the truth (or approximate leanings) about taste and… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 10:45 AM on April 10, 2017

Plane travel with walking boot
when ambulating in my own I did have to take it of and walk through without it, and they did the chemical test on it.

When I traveled with a boot they asked me to take it off. It was not much of a hassle for me so I did it but it's worth knowing that might be coming up. When my mom was having some medical issues including some balance unsteadiness she requested and received a wheelchair and said it made her travel through the airport a LOT easier.… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 7:15 PM on April 9, 2017 marked best answer

Where can I find drawing reference photos of a diverse set of people?
I find that Wikimedia Commons which has digital images of stuff from around the world can find you a lot of different types of people. Their people by country category might be useful here and they're free to use so no copyright concerns.
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 8:55 AM on April 8, 2017

One thing to make a better life?
Habits, generally. Specifically

- 45 min of "no screen" time in the am
- flossing/brushing daily
- meditation daily
- reading 30+ minutes before bed (and no other screens)
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 8:52 AM on April 8, 2017

How to approach my mom's potential alcohol problem?
Alanon will be very, very helpful for you.

Concur. I had an alcoholic parent and everything medusa said rings true for me. It's a natural thing for people to minimize the drinking problems of those they love. It may be helpful to you to be in a room full of people doing it so that you can see how common this sort of story is particularly to people who have lived through it. I don't think you need to confront your mom (agree with others: she has… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 5:22 PM on April 7, 2017

What are your tips and best practices for selling a car on Craigslist?
The only scammy thing that happened to me was a family who told me the head gasket seal was defective and said they'd only pay $1,000. There was no defect. Good day, scammers. I said good day!

This exact same thing happened to me. People would say "Oh hey there is oil leaking from this, I'll give you (significantly less than asking) just to take it off of your hands, it's a fire hazard!!" Ignore these people. Be realistic about how much the… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 11:26 AM on April 6, 2017

I like using cash over credit card
I'm a huge fan of cash. I even have a checkbook which I use to pay for some things. I have credit cards and pay them off at the end of every month. As long as you feel like you know where your money's going and you are not unduly inconvenienced, cash is just fine.The only way I would say it's NOT fine is if you're trying to pay someone who doesn't want to be paid that way. If you make your preference for cash into someone else's inconvenience, then it's a problem. Otherwise, no it's fine.
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 5:21 AM on April 5, 2017
As a counterpoint, I have a bank that refunds my ATM fees which can be helpful for this sort of thing.
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 9:50 AM on April 5, 2017

Help this trans man swim!
My thoughts went straight to Under Armor tank tops. They have a masculine look, they are snug but not binding. They're not specifically for swimming but have a fitness gear look that wouldn't be out of place in the water. This is their "surf" shirt that might work since it's a little roomier. This sort of tank even though it's men's might not read that way but I bet it's comfy. This is not Under Armor but is rash guard without the neck. Not sure of the scoop neck would work. Googleable… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 4:49 PM on April 4, 2017

Wrong name on mother's death certificate?
I am sorry for your loss. Grief makes people hold on to all sorts of odd little aspects of the death process, as you have noted. You should absolutely let this go--the death certificate uses the name your mother used--and maybe make it up in some sort of personal way that gives you some closure. My father had his born-with name and his commonly-used name and the death certificate had his commonly used name and this worked out fine for us.
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 6:56 AM on April 4, 2017

Adventurous seniors and living on the cheap
An oldie but a goodie is Over the Next Hill: An Ethnography of RVing Seniors in North America by Dorothy Ayers Counts. I just finished reading Full-Time RVing: A Complete Guide to Life on the Open Road by Bill and Jan Moeller who have written a number of good books about the RVing lifestyle. Many are somewhat outdated but all are pretty good.
posted to Ask MetaFilter by jessamyn at 6:35 PM on April 3, 2017

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