What a nice man.

Tuesday already, and already: What a week. Post-Labor Day is the time to shift into a higher gear, and the tach is definitely climbing. But still manageable. For the millionth time, it’s hard to work two half-time jobs; you have to be good at planning (which I’m not) and boundaries (ditto), as well as willing to bend everything, all the time.

Ah, well. Employed is better than unemployed.

How is everyone at midweek? The news about Cokie Roberts broke late morning, and as I know a lot of public-radio types, the tributes, as they say, poured in. Until late afternoon, when a different sort of reaction hit the porch like a wet load of manure:

“I never met her,” Trump told reporters traveling with him on Air Force One. “She never treated me nicely. But I would like to wish her family well. She was a professional, and I respect professionals. I respect you guys a lot, you people a lot. She was a real professional. Never treated me well, but I certainly respect her as a professional.”

My god, is there anything this idiot can’t ruin?

Truth be told, haven’t been a Roberts fan for a while; she was the high priestess of the conventional-wisdom take for many years, and I’m just done with that. She was also Washington establishment/journalistic royalty, and again: BFD. It did seem that she was a sterling person and a great friend and mentor, so that counts for something. It counts for a lot, actually.

Yesterday, the president of the United States spoke highly of Saudi Arabia as a military partner/client. Because they “pay cash.” I need a vacation so bad I can taste it. A vacation out of the country. One more month.

Not much to blog today, but this is really good. Long, but good. Enjoy. Me, I’m into Netflix tonight.

Posted at 9:16 pm in Current events |

91 responses to “What a nice man.”

  1. beb said on September 18, 2019 at 1:21 am

    The other day Deadline Detroit had an article about Mitch Albom where someone was trying to decide what was the Mitchiest Albom column. I looked all over the page but could not find Nancy’s name anywhere. They referenced a column where Mitch wrote that the youth of today do not respect their elders. Anyone have a more Mitchiest column to suggest.

    By way of reference one of the tablets translated from Ur was a poem (or pray) that complained that the youth of today don’t respect their elders. 4000 years ago people were already complaining about th’ kidz.

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  2. Sherri said on September 18, 2019 at 2:37 am

    When old Mitch writes about sports these days, he’s just as awful. This latest piece, about Matt Stafford and his wife’s brain tumor, in which he goes on an extended metaphor about the similarities between Stafford’s Job as QB for the Lions and what he had to do to support his wife.


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  3. Alan Stamm said on September 18, 2019 at 7:35 am

    . . . you people.

    Not journalists or reporters or the media. You people.

    Staying on brand takes no effort.

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  4. Suzanne said on September 18, 2019 at 8:21 am

    I just skimmed the article on teenage pricks, but I think it’s on to something. It seems that a hallmark of conservative pundits, and many politicians, is the inability to move past middle school intellectually and emotionally. Ben Shapiro comes to mind, along with Mike Huckabee as tops in this. There must be plenty of their kind out there since they have quite a following.

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  5. Mark P said on September 18, 2019 at 9:29 am

    Of course Roberts’ death was all about Trump. In the mind of a psychopath, only one real person exists.

    I’m sure Cokie Roberts was a nice person, and maybe at one time a good journalist, but as an elder commentator, she sucked. I couldn’t stand to listen to her “insights”. She would repeat the conventional wisdom, and then the anchors would act like she just gave an analytical solution to the three-body problem. Oh well. Nil nisi bonum.

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  6. Sherri said on September 18, 2019 at 11:00 am

    This is good – Sarah Taber’s Twitter thread about the MIT Media Lab is now an article online at the Atlantic: https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2019/09/problem-sugar-daddy-science/598231/

    Also, more fallout at MIT, Richard Stallman, who has long been a toxic presence there, resigned his courtesy appointment as Visiting Scientist, and more importantly, has also resigned as head of the Free Software Foundation. Stallman was the creator of the FSF, and has been the person most identified with the org. He’s also been a repulsive human being, responsible for setting a culture which has made that world unwelcoming for women.

    I went back and read the 1983 report on women in CS at MIT, and it was depressing how little has changed, except for the worse.


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  7. Sherri said on September 18, 2019 at 11:16 am

    Cokie was always pretty centrist, not much worse or better than the rest of the Washington press corps. I think it’s very rare to find anyone who is good as a elder commentator; too often, they get stuck in time, unable to adapt to a changing world.

    In the era of #MeToo, it is nice to hear of someone who actively helped out younger journalists in their careers, particularly younger women, and by all accounts, Cokie did that.

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  8. Deborah said on September 18, 2019 at 11:23 am

    Lewindowski is a perfect example of an adult with teenage prick behavior. I’ve seen clips of him being a smug asshole yesterday. I read that the Dem reps did a bad job of questioning him until the end when a lawyer staffer got him to answer closer to respectfully. What is this country coming to?

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  9. Scout said on September 18, 2019 at 2:01 pm

    That Teenage Pricks piece was disturbing and so right on.

    “And all of them— the kids from the almost entirely white rural host school and the kids from the predominantly black and Latino urban visiting school—knew exactly what that banner meant. It meant: Fuck you. It meant, “we” took “our” country back.

    The only person who’d be confused, or who’d infer a more complicated message, is a sophisticated professional adult whose political worldview depends on a condescending belief in America’s essential racial innocence.”

    This piece hits pretty much every point of what has transpired since the biggest example of arrested development stole the white house and proceeded to act as an example for assholes to flaunt their privilege, their bigotry, their misogyny and their lack of any moral compass.

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  10. Deborah said on September 18, 2019 at 2:11 pm

    I had my physical today and my Dr is perfectly OK with my low carb diet and I’m in good health. I don’t have the results of the routine lab work yet of course so that might change. Tomorrow I have a routine mammogram and that always makes me think of Moe and her hilarious comment here about mammograms years ago. I wish I could find it. I think there’s a way to go to the archives but I’m not remembering how.

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  11. Deborah said on September 18, 2019 at 2:27 pm

    This isn’t exactly the way Moe told the mammogram joke as I recall, but it’s close:

    How to prepare for a mammogram


    Open your refrigerator door and insert one breast in door. Shut the door as hard as possible and lean on the door for good measure.

    Hold that position for five seconds. Repeat again in case the first time wasn’t effective enough.


    Visit your garage at 3AM when the temperature of the cement floor is just perfect. Take off all your clothes and lie comfortably on the floor with one breast wedged under the rear tire of the car. Ask a friend to slowly back the car up until your breast is sufficiently flattened and chilled.. Turn over and repeat with the other breast.


    Freeze two metal bookends overnight.. Strip to the waist. Invite a stranger into the room. Press the bookends against one of your breasts.

    Smash the bookends together as hard as you can. Set up an appointment with the stranger to meet next year and do it again.


    I miss Moe.

    I wonder… if guys had to have their testicles squeezed in a freezing machine every year, they’d come up with a much more humane procedure pronto.

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  12. Sherri said on September 18, 2019 at 2:44 pm

    Hey basset, still looking for a house? Maybe you should move out to Clarksville? Money magazine just named it the best place to live: http://money.com/money/longform/clarksville-best-place-to-live-in-the-us-2019/

    There were certainly a lot of houses being built when I was there a few months ago visiting my parents. I’m happier in number 12 on their list, but Clarksville is definitely much more affordable than Redmond.

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  13. Julie Robinson said on September 18, 2019 at 3:38 pm

    Deborah, what a hoot. Except, not really. Did you know that in Germany, you start with an ultrasound? So you only get the radiation exposure of a mammogram if the ultrasound indicates the need.

    An Orlando friend, who is from Germany, tries to get hers done when she goes for a visit. She’s argued with docs here for years in hopes of having the ultrasound but without success.

    I’ve had both, and I’d take the ultrasound any day.

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  14. beb said on September 18, 2019 at 4:25 pm

    Digby’s column in Salon this morning makes an interesting point. During the afternoon session a committee lawyer was allowed 30 minutes of questioning. And during that time he got Lewendowski to twice confirm that every thing he said in the Muller report was true. Then Nadler put the nail in it by reminding Lewendowski that failure to answer question from Congress was an obstruction of justice, the third article of impeachment for Nixon. That said, the biggest obstruction to impeachment now seems to be Nancy Pelosi, She obviously afraid that impeachment hearing would drive away Democratic voters but I think the bigger fear is that is she does not impeach that is demoralize even more Democrats.

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  15. Jeff Borden said on September 18, 2019 at 5:08 pm

    Two quick items:

    One: Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who just flew to Saudi Arabia, called the attack on its oil fields “an act of war.” Did we learn nothing from our adventure in Iraq? Are we now going to send people in harm’s way because the damned Saudis are helping keep Kushner Co. afloat?

    Two: This is a work of genius agit-prop. My jaw dropped the first time I saw it. Brilliant. But will it move the needle?


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  16. Deborah said on September 18, 2019 at 7:00 pm

    What do we always get when Republicans are in power these days? Recessions and War. They think starting wars gets them votes or something. When will this stop?

    That Sandy Hook Promise link was powerful, Jeff B. When will the Republicans get a conscience and do something about guns?

    I noticed that Joe had nothing to say after some of us answered his question about how to get rid of AR type guns. I realize I have fed the troll but damn it, get a conscience Joe.

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  17. Joe Kobiela said on September 18, 2019 at 7:14 pm

    No Deborah,
    I read what you had to say, just don’t think it’s doable, do you honestly think over 1,000,000 people are just going to give up their gun? Start in Chicago, and see how it works, and get back to me. I would much rather see stricter background checks including mental evaluations especially at gun shows. Glad your DR appointment was good and sorry how they have to do breast exams all I know is they found my wife’s cancer and we’re able to save her life 20 yrs ago.
    Pilot Joe

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  18. basset said on September 18, 2019 at 7:46 pm

    Sherri, we’ve thought about it, particularly in Pleasant View, but we don’t want to get too far from our 35 years in place in sw Nashville. Backing off on the search for now, Mrs B is having some outpatient surgery tomorrow and we need to see how that goes.

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  19. Deborah said on September 18, 2019 at 7:53 pm

    Joe missed the whole point, didn’t he?

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  20. Jeff Borden said on September 18, 2019 at 7:54 pm

    As a 30-year resident of Chicago, I’m really tired of my city being cited by ammosexuals as proof of the folly of gun laws. Indiana is 20 minutes away. It’s easier to buy a gun there than Sudafed. Straw buyers flood our streets with handguns. Street gangs gobble them up. They not only kill with impunity, but they care nothing about collateral damage. We live under the same insanely inadequate gun laws as every other place in ‘Murica. We don’t have tough gun laws thanks to the murderous motherfuckers from the NRA’s well-funded lawyers.

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  21. alex said on September 18, 2019 at 8:37 pm

    It took some powerful ads to move the needle on smoking and drunk driving, but it worked. I predict that things will eventually shake out the same way with regard to guns. When the issue is reframed as the public’s right to safety versus the individual’s right to behave with no regard for others’ safety, the public’s interests eventually prevail.

    And Joe, Australia gave up its guns without a Ruby Ridge type of showdown. They didn’t have to send in the military to disarm people. All this cold, dead hands shit is just NRA hyperbole and nobody but an idiot takes any of it seriously anyway.

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  22. David C. said on September 18, 2019 at 9:10 pm

    I’ve never been able to make low-carb work for me. Bread, pasta, and potatoes are my favorites. I can’t imagine a meal without one of them. I do two 24 hour fasts a week and I think I probably does the same thing. I find prohibition much easier than moderation. It seems to be helping my pre-diabetes too. During my last two physicals my blood glucose, which has been creeping up for years, is down from 105 three years ago to 85-ish both times.

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  23. Sherri said on September 18, 2019 at 9:15 pm

    Democracy is what we do to prevent political disagreement from turning into violent conflict. But the premise of Trumpist populism is that the legitimacy and authority of government is conditional on agreement with the political preferences of a shrinking minority of citizens — a group mainly composed of white, Christian conservatives.

    This is about why conservatives flip out on gun buybacks, but it applies to more than that.


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  24. Dexter Friend said on September 19, 2019 at 2:03 am

    The PBS Country Music shows are exceptionally good. It’s sad that almost all are long dead, but Willie Nelson still is out there. Burns’ staff did well in finding all those ancient photos and interviews. I never really understood the sell-out from hillbilly music with a fiddle to the sophisto change to soft piano, six violinists, and slow love ballads. I do prefer the storytelling songs over the crap that FM stations play in the modern age. Stations like WOWO years ago played cross-over country songs half the time. Today’s playlists on FM Country stations are garbage. Thank gawd for satellite radio to filter out the crap.

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  25. Joe Kobiela said on September 19, 2019 at 5:57 am

    Brenda Lee is still a pistol and Patsy Cline my god what a voice only 30 yrs old when she died.
    Pilot Joe

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  26. Suzanne said on September 19, 2019 at 7:00 am

    Pilot Joe, I almost gasped when the documentary stated that Cline was only 30. I had no idea she was so young. What a voice!

    I grew up on country. It’s all my dad listened to. I mostly despise what is now called country. It’s bland pop music only distinguishable from other pop music by it’s lack of diversity and lyrics that mention God and America and soldiers. Beyond that, the lyrics are mostly about sex & drunkenness and the singers sound exactly like what is playing on the local pop station.

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  27. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on September 19, 2019 at 7:40 am

    So am I the only one who didn’t know Willie Nelson wrote “Crazy”?

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  28. basset said on September 19, 2019 at 7:56 am

    Could be, JeffTMMO, could be.
    Dexter, “sellout” is the key word there… they were just trying to come up with something that’d sell to the largest possible audience. And the crap we have today is the logical extension of that… you create a marketing plan, do some market research, get something written to fit what the research says your audience wants, then get out there and sell. Takes all the soul and emotion right out of it.

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  29. Connie said on September 19, 2019 at 10:07 am

    I suspect so, Jefftmmo.

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  30. Julie Robinson said on September 19, 2019 at 10:13 am

    Nope, Jeff, you aren’t. Country doesn’t ring my bell at all, and I’m not watching. I’ll go stand in the corner now.

    Our toddler in chief has dropped his former bestie, Netanyahu, now that it looks like he won’t be in power anymore. Talk about whiplash! https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/our-relations-are-with-israel-trump-appears-to-give-embattled-netanyahu-the-cold-shoulder/2019/09/18/9950eb24-da45-11e9-bfb1-849887369476_story.html?wpisrc=nl_rainbow&wpmm=1

    Also, Tulsi Gabbard has a thing or two to say to Trump about Saudi Arabia telling us where to send our soldiers: https://twitter.com/TulsiGabbard/status/1173723701373591552

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  31. Deborah said on September 19, 2019 at 10:53 am

    David C, interesting that you fast a couple of days a week. Do you pick the same days each week, or randomly choose? I think I could do that too, maybe I’ll try that as a way to keep the weight off once I hit my goal. I’ve already lost 5 lbs and it hasn’t been a struggle. I love bread, pasta and potatoes too, but on this diet I get to have cheese so there’s that. I’ve been trying out different recipes for chicken, so it’s been fun. I normally have 2 meals a day, breakfast and dinner, I rarely eat lunch. Now I have lunch at around 10, a Martini at 4:30 and dinner around 5:30 and nothing before or after except coffee first thing in the morning and water after dinner. I’ve never been much of a snacker. I did cheat once when we had company and my husband made risotto and I will cheat again on Monday, our wedding anniversary, I’m going to have pasta at Spiaggia, a restaurant a couple of blocks away.

    Most people lose weight during the summer because they’re more active, but not me this summer I was super lazy, I sat around and read a lot at the cabin instead of hiking etc, especially the second half of summer after eating my way through France.

    I ordered a jacket over the internet in a size large, it arrived yesterday and I happily need to exchange it for a medium.

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  32. Deborah said on September 19, 2019 at 10:56 am

    Julie, is it just me (?) when I click on your first link in comment #30 I get nn.c?

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  33. Michael Einheuser said on September 19, 2019 at 11:01 am

    This was my Cokie FB comment for which I received some pushback including a suggestion I was a snowflake.

    First, I want to give due respect to her pioneering role and service as a role model for both women and men in journalism. NPR would not be what it is today without its founding mothers. You know who the others are.

    That said, I thought Cokie could often be arrogant and condescending to her listeners. She constantly reminded us that she sat at the big people’s table. She often reported with a chuckle in her voice as if to say; “What do you expect, they are all fools.”

    Go gently on your journey, Ms. Roberts. You annoyed me, but you informed me.

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  34. Julie Robinson said on September 19, 2019 at 11:10 am

    Well, darn it, I was trying to do the html linky thing, looked it up and everything. So I was perturbed when it still showed up all long, and then to know it didn’t even work is frustrating. Here it is again: https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/our-relations-are-with-israel-trump-appears-to-give-embattled-netanyahu-the-cold-shoulder/2019/09/18/9950eb24-da45-11e9-bfb1-849887369476_story.html?wpisrc=nl_rainbow&wpmm=1. *crosses fingers*

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  35. Deborah said on September 19, 2019 at 12:03 pm

    I found this article riveting, I want to see this documentary about Roy Cohn https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2019/09/19/roy-cohn-donald-trump-documentary-228144

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  36. Jakash said on September 19, 2019 at 1:10 pm

    I’m no more of a country music fan than Julie, but I’ve known who wrote “Crazy” for a pretty long while. (You don’t have to be a country music fan to like that song, I submit.)

    Gotta say, though, Jeff, that regardless of what it says about your musical knowledge, it shows that you’ve been derelict in keeping up with the comments to this blog, which is by far the greater sin! ; ) Comments 10, 11, and 12 on this thread, for instance… http://nancynall.com/2019/08/28/a-to-y-no-zzzzs/#comment-867034

    We just finished the first segment of Country Music, grudgingly. (Hey, isn’t any Ken Burns documentary required viewing for a granola-and-Grantchester PBS subscriber?) It was weird to have all the traditional excellence of his work (and Dayton Duncan’s) devoted to something that I just don’t really give a crap about. Those foundational classic performances by the Carter Family and Jimmie Rodgers sounded to me like caricatures of what many folks hate about country music. Sorry about that; obviously I’m making myself look silly by saying that, but there you have it.

    My wife has announced that she’s done with it. I’m torn between being intrigued to see a well-produced Burnsapalooza like this, simply from a historical standpoint, and sparing myself 14 more hours, given my attitude…

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  37. Julie Robinson said on September 19, 2019 at 2:30 pm

    I’ve never watched a Ken Burns documentary, except for 10-15 minutes when someone else had the remote. Always meant to watch The Civil War, threw out the videotapes just a few years ago. Just too plodding and ponderous.

    I’ll go back to my corner now.

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  38. Suzanne said on September 19, 2019 at 2:52 pm

    I have missed about half of the Country Music documentary. What I have watched brings back many memories of hearing the old time country stuff; Bill Monroe, Hawkshaw Hawkins, Hank Williams, etc.that my dad loved! I like Johnny Cash’s music but I never did like his voice or June Carter Cash’s.

    I don’t know if any of you have watched the Marvelous Mrs Maisel on Amazon Prime but if you did, and watched the Burns documentary, did Minnie Pearl not make you think of Jane Lynch’s character, Sophie Lennon? Old Minnie was not the rube she pretended to be at all!

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  39. basset said on September 19, 2019 at 3:06 pm

    Too much Marty Stuart, that’s the main issue I have with it… he is an authority on this stuff, but by no means the only one.

    Haven’t seen any hip-hoppers yet, have to give Burns that, and I did buy a Maddox Brothers & Rose cd this week.

    Suzanne, you might find this interesting; https://sarahcannon.com

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  40. Jakash said on September 19, 2019 at 3:10 pm

    You probably know this, Suzanne, but you can watch all the episodes that have been broadcast so far for free via the PBS app, through whatever it is you use to watch Amazon Prime.


    “plodding and ponderous” Well, there’s that, Julie, but try reading a book or listening to a podcast! 😉

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  41. Sherri said on September 19, 2019 at 3:15 pm

    I was allergic to country for a long time, since it was everywhere I turned. But I do like Hank Williams, Patsy Cline, Dolly Parton, and Johnny Cash. And Willie. But not Waylon.

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  42. Deborah said on September 19, 2019 at 4:07 pm

    My husband has been watching the Country Music series. He isn’t a fan of the music but he likes Burns and he’s enjoying the Americana history. One of the things about country is that it is often about the words less about the actual music. The stories are very direct, about practical things one encounters. It’s not abstract at all. There have been some excellent musicians of course.

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  43. Joe Kobiela said on September 19, 2019 at 4:52 pm

    Sitting at the FBO in Raleigh Durham and everyone is running around madly, Bernie Somebody is coming in for a speech. Kinda funny how he flies private now, wonder what that carbon footprint is?
    Pilot Joe

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  44. David C. said on September 19, 2019 at 5:08 pm

    Deborah, I shoot for Monday and Thursday. It varies though. I do long bike rides on Tuesday and Saturday or Sunday, weather permitting. If it’s supposed to be raining, I adjust the bike riding day and the fast day if necessary. I’ve tried riding on a fast day and I hit the wall hard. The fasting doesn’t seem to shift my weight much. I think I probably eat extra the rest of the week to make up for it. As I understand it, the cells in my body have to work extra hard to use insulin and it reboots the way I metabolize carbs and lowers my blood glucose. It seems to be working and I’ve just accepted that I’ll probably be 5’9″ and 200 lbs. the rest of my life. If fasting two days a week and cycling 60-80 miles a week won’t do it, nothing will.

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  45. Deborah said on September 19, 2019 at 6:43 pm

    Before you comment that fasting is dangerous, know that it’s in our DNA. Our ancient ancestors didn’t eat as regularly as we do now, they went much longer in between meals so there is some science about fasting to control weight.

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  46. David C. said on September 19, 2019 at 7:18 pm

    What Deborah said, and I don’t do it in a dudebro lifehack way. It’s also been shown to work on German rats. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/07/190702152749.htm

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  47. David C. said on September 19, 2019 at 7:36 pm

    I saw an Andrew Yang yard sign today. I couldn’t be more confused if I’d have seen a unicorn.

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  48. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on September 19, 2019 at 9:56 pm

    Jakash, dereliction is my life. I stopped even pretending to keep up!

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  49. alex said on September 19, 2019 at 10:07 pm

    The genes that give us diabetes were evolved by natural selection to help us survive famine and go for long stretches without eating. Unfortunately, this trait doesn’t jibe well with our modern diets and living habits and thus becomes a disease. We were built to withstand deprivation but not abundance.

    Work’s kicking my fucking ass this week. I’m afraid I’ll be all used up before I ever get to retire.

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  50. Jakash said on September 19, 2019 at 11:08 pm

    Well, Jeff, if you’re not even trying to keep up these days, I give you loads of credit for wading through that tedious 4-paragraph screed of mine and responding to it. Cheers!

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  51. Dexter Friend said on September 20, 2019 at 1:00 am

    I rarely do this but tonight I re-watched the Hank Williams segment , as I became a huge fan when I was in my late 20’s about 1975. Tonight I realized something: I remember Mom playing records when I was a little boy, and quite possibly the first song I remember is “Hey Hey Good Lookin'”, by Hank. Also “How Much Is That Doggie in the Window?” by Patti Page. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2AkLE4X-bbU Tonight was an entertainment desert until I stumbled across Peter Jackson’s restoration project of WWI. (on HBO) My gawd! What devastation. I do not think I have ever seen anything like it, on film, tape, or fer crissakes, even in Vietnam.

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  52. bb in DE said on September 20, 2019 at 5:25 am

    Dexter, I felt the same way about the Peter Jackson project. For those who dunno: Jackson took hundreds of old-timey reels and clips of video recorded during the War to End All Wars, slowed them down so they no longer look all herky-jerky like film from the 19-teens tends to look, colorized, shaded, and in myriad other ways made them look absolutely modern, added sound effects to match what is shown in the restored clips, and then used as voice-over the recorded remembrances of WWI vets as they discussed their experiences in the war. I watched it during our flight stateside this summer and found it so transfixing that it was the first thing I watched on our flight back in August.

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  53. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on September 20, 2019 at 7:44 am

    Yes I did, Jakash, but I didn’t try to defend Grantchester; I’m kind of on the fence about the new rector, while my wife enjoys it all. Hoping it’s not just because that’s the minister she wishes she were married to!

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  54. Suzanne said on September 20, 2019 at 8:43 am

    What is the name of the Jackson film? I have not seen it and I would like to. Since the 100th Anniversary of the end of WWI, I have spent some time delving into it more than I ever have, realizing how much it was glossed over in history class in school and how foundational it is for our modern world and its troubles. And how horrific it was.
    Surely I can find it online somewhere…

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  55. LAMary said on September 20, 2019 at 9:13 am

    I got into Hank Williams in the 70s also. Lovesick Blues got me, then So Lonesome I Could Cry. I had a double album of Hank and then a double album of Bob Wills. There’s a quirkiness about both of those guys that appeals to me.

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  56. Deborah said on September 20, 2019 at 9:43 am

    Suzanne, here’s a trailer for the Jackson movie https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PcgceA64aAI

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  57. Julie Robinson said on September 20, 2019 at 10:05 am

    They shall Not Grow Old is available on Netflix but only as a DVD, also at the good ol’ ACPL.

    I had my doubts about the new vicar, because:James Norton, but he has grown on me. Of course if you’ve read the books, you know the TV version just lifted the concept and took it in a new direction. SPOILER (No romance with Amanda; he marries the German widow.)

    Speaking of British drama, I’m taking my mom to the Downton Abbey movie this afternoon. It’s the second anniversary of my sister’s death, and the movie will brighten her day.

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  58. Deborah said on September 20, 2019 at 10:58 am

    I’m getting ready in a few minutes to go to the climate strike in Grant Park, it starts at 11, it will be interesting to see how many people, especially young people show up. Seeing pictures from Germany and Australia where hundreds of thousands of people are out for it.

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  59. Jakash said on September 20, 2019 at 1:03 pm

    Full disclosure: we actually jumped ship on Grantchester when the new vicar came on board, i.e., after the first episode this season. It was handy for alliterating with granola, though!

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  60. Deborah said on September 20, 2019 at 2:20 pm

    I’m back from the climate strike march, it was fairly well attended and mostly by young people, somewhat diverse but predominately white kids. Lots of energy. There were maybe tens of thousands, but I’m bad at estimating crowds. It was really hot, the temps weren’t that high but the humidity was awful. It started at Roosevelt and Columbus in Grant Park for those who know Chicago, it ended at the Federal Plaza on Dearborn. I peeled off when we got to Michigan Ave and walked home, I was sweating like a pig. Saw lots of funny signs, I was really glad to see so many young people get involved, I hope this is a big movement.

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  61. Deborah said on September 20, 2019 at 7:08 pm

    One more thing about the march today, a young girl came up to me with her phone out and asked me if she could video/record why I was there today, I said Ok, I said that I was simply there to support the young people who were out today and she seemed very happy with my answer. She jumped up and down and whooped and told her friends what I had said and then she thanked me profusely. I don’t know if she had been asking other people what she asked me but it made me feel good that my response seemed to mean something to her. Maybe she was playing me but it didn’t feel like it.

    More power to the young people, they have to bear the brunt of climate change.

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  62. Julie Robinson said on September 20, 2019 at 8:14 pm

    Downton Abbey was fun, but I’d say strictly for the fans. I get all geeked out by the costumes and jewelry, and they did not disappoint. I never saw that many walkers at the movies before!

    Both the kids were at the climate protest in Orlando, with our son leading a singalong of We Are the World, complete with karaoke track. I had to laugh at that one, he loves to DJ and perform. There were some good signs, like the dinosaur holding a card that said “You’re Next”. And my favorite, a preteen’s sign that said “If You Did Your Job, I’d Be At School”.

    We just had solar installed at our Orlando house to provide all our electricity. Down there, everything is electric, from heat pump for heating and cooling, to stove, to water heater and dryer. Apparently natural gas is rarely used and so super pricey to get a hookup for. Except for one apartment in college, I’ve always had gas, and the electric burners are a huge challenge.

    This is the last year for the full tax credit on solar, and with the current regime, you know that won’t change soon.

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  63. Sherri said on September 20, 2019 at 8:38 pm

    Julie, growing up in TVA land, I had never used gas for anything until I moved to Pittsburgh for grad school.

    I’m in Boston for the ACLU Leadership Conference, which gets started in earnest tomorrow. I did learn today that Biden and Klobuchar are both blowing off the ACLU on the questionnaires we’ve sent the candidates on civil rights issues. Everybody else except for Castro has submitted answers, and Castro’s staff has indicated answers are imminent.

    BTW, JC, I have to turn off my VPN in order to post comments. Otherwise, my comments seem to go into a black hole.

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  64. LAMary said on September 20, 2019 at 10:03 pm

    I need an opinion. I’ve been at my most recent contract job for nearly three months. I freely admit I don’t like it. It’s working for a huge company that works with the federal government. The federal government’s requirement for how we do things is baroque. The company’s IT systems are about 10 years out of date and the two systems I have to use all the time don’t talk to each other so there’s a lot of double work. On top of that, my training consisted of “shadowing” someone who had been there for a while. Most of the people there are temps, like me, just there longer. The first guy I shadowed was great. Clear communicator, sharing his templates and best practices. He quit. I got paired with a woman who, and please don’t take this as being catty, looks about eighty, weighs about eighty, has long, yellow, stringy hair, and sounds like she smokes four packs a day. She wheeled her desk chair over to my cubicle, asks me to show her a specific process. I haven’t done this process before and I’m trying work my way through it following the logic of the system. I make a mistake. She sighs loudly and rolls her eyes. I make another mistake and the sighs get louder and more dramatic and the eye roll happens again. She asks me if I haven’t paid any attention to anything. I tell her I’ve never done the process she’s asking for. She wheels away, muttering and sighing.
    People sitting near me who were hired at the same time I was are looking at me like they expect me to either cry or get up and smack her. Am I being too sensitive? I found her attitude really offensive and hurtful but I don’t know if I can complain. It’s a weird place, to be sure. I’ve never had anyone be so rude right to my face and really I’ve had a hard time getting my head into the game since then. I do my job but man, it sucks. There’s a good chance I’ll get let go soon because there’s no guarantee with my contract and in early October my 90 days are up. They’ve already got rid of more than half the temps who were hired the same time I started.

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  65. alex said on September 20, 2019 at 11:06 pm

    LA Mary, my heart goes out to you. I don’t think I could deal with another dysfunctional workplace at this point in my life, and you shouldn’t put up with it either. It’s been a while since I could describe a co-worker with such passionate intensity, which is a good thing.

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  66. Heather said on September 21, 2019 at 12:57 am

    LA Mary, do you ever read Ask a Manager? She has a lot of good advice for dealing with annoying coworkers. Might be something in the archives. If nothing else it makes for entertaining reading: https://www.askamanager.org/category/advice-about-your-coworkers

    Personally I would just probably take a mild tone and say something like, “Is the way I’m trying to help you bothering you?”

    I’ve been doing some freelance work since I got let go and I’m thinking about pursuing it full-time. I’ve been applying for jobs and employer-sponsored health insurance makes life easier in many ways, but I’m also so much happier not dealing with crappy bosses and terrible coworkers. The idea of going back to an office all day–ugh. Well, we’ll see.

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  67. Dexter Friend said on September 21, 2019 at 2:07 am

    Deborah, thanks for representing at Global Climate Strike March. 4 million globally, 150 countries+, Greta Thunberg, the tiny 16 year old, has captivated the world as did the Parkland kids in Florida. Too bad everything in 2019 gets shoved aside after Warholian 15 minutes. L.O’Donnell just said NYC estimates center on a count of “hundreds of thousands” in the streets. By cracky, in my day I did my share of marching, in my old army fatigues and field jacket, in D.C. and Chicago, protesting the war in Vietnam. Since then, many causes have aroused demonstrators. Today’s may have been the biggest since the October 1967 war moratorium. That day, in all the major USA cities, demonstrations shut down commerce in protest of LBJ’s war policy. ~ Well, I hope things work out, LA Mary. Your comment made me recall the time a temporary boss told me to set up a punch press , get it ready to run parts, and I had never seen anything like this press and had no idea where the dies were or how they had been cataloged and filed in the racks. I offer my sympathy and hope you find a solution.

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  68. ROGirl said on September 21, 2019 at 6:20 am

    LA Mary, I feel your pain. The rudeness that you have experienced at your job is something I have been wondering about, too. I mean, I have been on the receiving end of verbal attacks by numerous people where I work that in most places would not be tolerated. It’s the company culture, but is that just how things are now? These people didn’t just change recently and become unhinged anger machines. I’m also dealing with a manager who is extremely narcissistic and operates in chaos and incoherence. Not unlike working for Donald Trump, I would imagine. It’s a daily struggle.

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  69. nancy said on September 21, 2019 at 8:54 am

    Mary, you know how many cigarettes are in four packs? EIGHTY.

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  70. Deborah said on September 21, 2019 at 9:36 am

    LA Mary, this may not be possible, but are you allowed to have your cell phone near you when you’re on the job? If so, while your nemesis scoots her chair over maybe you could surreptitiously hit record on your phone. Do that a few times until you have a number of instances of her being rude, then share those with a higher up. And maybe talk to another coworker who sits near you to back you up. I suppose it could do more harm than good. But it might get you a bit of satisfaction.

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  71. dull_old_man said on September 21, 2019 at 10:45 am

    Dexter Friend–It’s tricky, remembering the 1960s. My memory is that the first Moratorium was November 1969. The March on the Pentagon was October 1967; I read Armies of the Night (Norman Mailer’s self-promoting version) in a college class in 1969 along with Thucydides.

    It was bad then. What’s worse now is that the entire Republican Party is in on the crimes.

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  72. Deborah said on September 21, 2019 at 12:08 pm

    My husband always says that the reason so many youths got involved in protests etc in the 60s was that it was personal, young men were getting killed in Vietnam and their friends and families didn’t like that one bit. Young men got drafted and often had hideous experiences, as Dexter and others here very well know. Now the climate crisis is getting personal, people are experiencing it first hand and young people globally know they’re the ones that will have to carry the brunt of climate change into the future. They make me hopeful that something will be done. We’ve got to quit voting for old white men who have the power but don’t take action.

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  73. susan said on September 21, 2019 at 2:53 pm

    Nancy Pelosi is acting like an old white man.

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  74. Brian stouder said on September 21, 2019 at 3:13 pm

    Well, my nickel theory is – Speaker Pelosi is thinking several moves in advance. If you impeach Trumputin NOW, he gets the 2020 victim/put-upon banner, and many more votes than he’d otherwise get. Let’s defeat him at the polls in 2020 (again!), and be done with him. Ms Pelosi is playing this exactly right, imo

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  75. beb said on September 21, 2019 at 3:32 pm

    If Pelsoi won’t impeach Trump congress should impeach Pelosi — I mean replace her as Speaker of the House. Where she fears that impeachment will cause some of the blue dogs Dems to lose their election, she ignores the bigger issue that she will dishearten Dems across the nation and cause Trump to win again. Pelosi was good in her day but her day has passed.

    A couple months after I retired I was asked to come back to train two other chemists on the use of Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer, a machine for measuring copper and lead (and other metals) at very low levels. When I heard that the woman I had trained was willing to come back to train the others I was happy to let her. I’m terrible at training. I’m not used to talking and after maybe half a day I’m hoarse and all talked out. So my sympathies to LAMary. I know your pain.

    I was never a Country fan. In fact for a long time I shunned Buffalo Springfield because I thought they were too Country for Rock and Roll. (Had mixed feelings about Neil Young was well. When he rocked he was really good, but sometimes he was awfully county.

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  76. David C. said on September 21, 2019 at 6:21 pm

    This is a long thread of threads on Pelosi’s/Dem’s strategies. It counts an awful lot on the Supremos not being assholes, which is a pretty big ask. I hope it’s at least somewhat accurate though. https://twitter.com/blakesmustache/status/1171772353958875136

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  77. Suzanne said on September 21, 2019 at 6:26 pm

    I concur on the Ask a Manager site:
    She give credible advice and I have learned almost as much from the comments. It helped me learn how hiring managers think (hint: not like you’d think, often) and she can be a little harsh.

    Crazy people at work must be going around. My daughter is dealing with two people who almost had a shouting match in her office over how to word an email RSVP to an event. One wanted to reply “yes” but the other insisted that the reply say “It’s on the calendar”. She said they went round and round for about 20 minutes.

    Truly, the world needs more people like this guy

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  78. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on September 21, 2019 at 10:48 pm

    Pence is on Mackinac Island, and he did it the no-class way as anticipated . . . but the two bike cops bringing up the rear make the video worth watching.


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  79. Connie said on September 22, 2019 at 1:56 am

    What Jeff said. I cracked up. This could swing Michigan blue for sure.

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  80. Connie said on September 22, 2019 at 6:08 am

    The Pence in cars on Mackinac video that I saw turned and shot from the rear after the cars passed, and that was the funny view of two officers in bikes working to keep up withthe vehicles. And I am serious that Pence with cars on the island could lose votes for the Rs.

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  81. ROGirl said on September 22, 2019 at 8:20 am

    I have been watching the Ken Burns Country Music documentary series and keep on waiting for an episode during which I don’t keep nodding off.

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  82. Suzanne said on September 22, 2019 at 8:41 am

    Wow. What a large crowd for the VP on Mackinac. What, 8-10 people?
    His wife has launched a Twitter account to highlight all the accomplishments of the Trump/Pence administration. The replies were, well, not nice.

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  83. susan said on September 22, 2019 at 10:08 am

    Oh, I see the problem: no cars allowed on Mackinac Island. Pence swingin’ his prick, which is his whole self.

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  84. Deborah said on September 22, 2019 at 10:20 am

    Here’s Greta Thunberg’s speech to congress. We need to listen to her https://www.independent.co.uk/voices/greta-thunberg-congress-speech-climate-change-crisis-dream-a9112151.html

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  85. Joe Kobiela said on September 22, 2019 at 1:16 pm

    I have a friend with a son in the secret service, he has been on every presidency since Bush the 2nd it is up to the secret service how security is laid out, so it was their decision not the vice president on how he traveled on the island. Also the security threats against this adminstration is way higher than it was against the last one.
    Pilot Joe

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  86. Deborah said on September 22, 2019 at 2:42 pm

    I just learned how to do something from the internet that I had never thought of before and boy howdy it has changed my life. I found out you can scrub your tub with a broom!! I have residual back pain from my spine problem and scrubbing the tub is usually painful, on my knees, bending over and twisting, all the worst things to do to my back. I went to the hardware store near here (which is unfortunately closing Nov 1) and bought the perfect broom, it’s like a scrub brush with a broom handle. It worked perfectly. You have to use a brand new, clean broom of course. I love the internet.

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  87. susan said on September 22, 2019 at 4:02 pm

    Deborah @85 – Yah. I recently learned how to tie my shoes in such a way that the laces don’t come untied while you’re walking/hiking. But they are just as easy to untie, when you want to untie them, as untying a regular shoe lace knot. Just pull on one of the string ends. THAT little trick has made me so happy! Shoe laces are just so slick they won’t stay in a knot unless you double tie them, which makes them so hard to unknot. I’ll see if I can find that video.

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  88. Dexter Friend said on September 22, 2019 at 6:28 pm

    ROGirl: Blame Peter Coyote. I am into the show, but try as I may, I also nodded off a few times and had to rewind a little bit. His voice could make a “dead man walking” nod off on the way to the chair.

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  89. Brian stouder said on September 22, 2019 at 7:44 pm

    I call bullshit on Joe’s assertion at 84 above. Every president gets a lot of attention/threat/crazy-talk from various peanut-galleries. One is tempted to say Obama would already have been impeached, if he acted as our current president does, with regard to (for example) Saudi Arabia, let alone the rammed Ruskies!

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  90. beb said on September 22, 2019 at 7:46 pm

    I think Michigan was going to vote blue next time anyway but Pence bringing SUVs to Mackinac Island only rubs in it what A-holes the Republicans have become.

    President G. W. Bush visited the island and did not bring a car. V-P Pence, a highly unimportant man that nobody thinks worth spending a cap on, brings an armada. I doubt the that Secret Service thought that was necessary. I’m sure Mr, Vain-in-the pants wanted the triumphal entrance.

    Deborah, congrates on finding a scrub brush you can use while standing up. I think I’ve seen them in the hardware store. Assumed they were for industrial applications but cleaning a tub is a great idea. Says the old guy who really can’t get on his knees any more.

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  91. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on September 22, 2019 at 8:16 pm

    Best piece I’ve read in the last year on the odd 40 year arc of evangelicalism in America. No clear path forward other than auguring in, which seems likely. The difference between this and a plane crash (though Joe may correct me if he likes!) is that while both will have casualties, the hard impact of evangelicalism with the Zero axis will result in multiple new unpredictable airframes taking flight.


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