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November 29, 2006 8:47 AM   Subscribe

Which MetaFilter members can you identify by their writing style/content combination alone? [more inside]
posted by louigi to MetaFilter-Related at 8:47 AM (184 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

I've been thinking about it for a while, but this post by grumblebee, highlighted a fact I've noticed several times before: I can essentially always tell when a post is by grumblebee, before I've finished reading it and seen his name. It's hard to put my finger on exactly why, in any way that isn't uselessly vague.

So, which members could you identify if all the names were hidden? Can you explain why?
posted by louigi at 8:47 AM on November 29, 2006


I can recognize almost anything by Eideteker, because I usually remember writing it.
posted by Eideteker at 8:55 AM on November 29, 2006 [2 favorites]


Oh, and that's not a post you've linked to, it's a comment. Every time someone confuses the two, Matt kills a kitten.
posted by Eideteker at 8:56 AM on November 29, 2006


Eideteker's also grumblebee. Mystery solved. Please close thread now.
posted by Smart Dalek at 9:01 AM on November 29, 2006


Ethereal Bligh and jonmc are the only ones I can consistently recognize, through a combination of content and distinct writing styles in both cases - though obviously that they both post a lot helps.
posted by Jon Mitchell at 9:12 AM on November 29, 2006


I can generally recognize comments left by Mayor Curley, even if they're not raging against New York.
posted by saladin at 9:15 AM on November 29, 2006


That time Jimmy Carter bought an account and posted all the comments in the thread about Ukrainian snuff films, I knew it was him instantly. That hombre's got the recognizable prose.
posted by COBRA! at 9:15 AM on November 29, 2006


grumblebee (guessed on that exact answer, too). And it's not totally vague- grumblebee often CAPITALIZES words in his answers. Plus he talks about his WIFE a lot.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 9:15 AM on November 29, 2006 [1 favorite]



    You know the posts. About
    the war. Or politics. Or Bush.
    You have seen them before.

posted by y2karl at 9:12 AM PST on November 29 [+] [!]
posted by YoBananaBoy at 9:17 AM on November 29, 2006


Astro Zombie 3 has a unique posting style.
posted by Astro Zombie at 9:18 AM on November 29, 2006


Oddly, the two that come to mind are quonsar and dios.
posted by Bael'Gar at 9:19 AM on November 29, 2006


Absolutely grumblebee. I started noticing that a long time ago, I believe before he started capitalizing. But maybe he used to italicize?

Frequently I can guess jonmc and Ethereal Bligh.
posted by ludwig_van at 9:22 AM on November 29, 2006


I have successfully predicted the poster before getting to the byline for grumblebee, little miss manners, quonsar, and cortex.
posted by danb at 9:23 AM on November 29, 2006


I can usually recognize IRFH's comments, because they are pure genius.
posted by cortex at 9:24 AM on November 29, 2006


I can generally recognize comments left by Mayor Curley, even if they're not raging against New York.

I can't disguise my voice on the phone, either.
posted by Mayor Curley at 9:25 AM on November 29, 2006


elpapacito .
posted by Kwantsar at 9:27 AM on November 29, 2006


I can usually pick out

Miguel (self-congratulatory, cocky, foreign)
Pinks (more of the same, but decidedly female)
mathowie (authoritative, lots of anger boiling over into his comments)
quonsar (lower case, angry at mathowie)
EB (several scrolls down just to finish first paragraph)

And yes, I can tell Astro Zombie 3 apart from the others, he's the only one who eats the stick instead of fetching it.
posted by onalark at 9:27 AM on November 29, 2006 [1 favorite]


I can only recognize EB in general.
However, I can identify ikkyu2's comments when the type of comment is an explanation of something mechanical/chemical/physical, and I can identify languagehat's entries when the subject is language.
posted by Bugbread at 9:29 AM on November 29, 2006


That's not anger in Matt's comments, that's lack of sleep. I have it on good authority that he hasn't slept a single minute in seven years. And now that he's got Fiona to worry about, he's sleeping negative.
posted by Plutor at 9:31 AM on November 29, 2006


I can recognize jimjohnson's comments when the subject is underarm sweating.
posted by found missing at 9:34 AM on November 29, 2006


I can spot a Todd Lokken post from 1000 yards.
posted by Rhomboid at 9:35 AM on November 29, 2006 [1 favorite]


I can almost always recognize posts I have written.
posted by BrodieShadeTree at 9:40 AM on November 29, 2006


I can't even tell my own comments sometimes. Seriously, I'll be reading really old AskMe threads and find an answer with my name on it, not remembering writing it whatsoever.
posted by grouse at 9:40 AM on November 29, 2006


Hey! I totally wrote the above post! Uncanny!
posted by BrodieShadeTree at 9:41 AM on November 29, 2006


I'll be reading really old AskMe threads and find an answer with my name on it, not remembering writing it whatsoever.

Thank god I'm not the only one.
posted by CunningLinguist at 9:45 AM on November 29, 2006


Thomcatspike?
posted by These Premises Are Alarmed at 9:45 AM on November 29, 2006


your mom.
posted by Stynxno at 9:54 AM on November 29, 2006


By the way, vis-à-vis my poor punctuation and my calling a comment a post: I hope that in general my identifying features aren't bad grammar and incorrect use of words.
posted by louigi at 10:04 AM on November 29, 2006


I dunno. Let's remove all the names and find out.

(I can usually recognize Divine Wino, thepinksuperhero, and the NYC people but that's just because I know them in real life so I know what their conversational styles and personal hobbyhorses are. Aside from a few really prominent people like y2karl, fold & mutilate, Miguel and quonsar, most others would be a crapshoot if I was guessing blind.)
posted by jonmc at 10:06 AM on November 29, 2006


grumblee is a partial giveaway because there's a good chance it's him if the name is offscreen due to the length of the post.
posted by StickyCarpet at 10:10 AM on November 29, 2006


Let's remove all the names and find out.

Been there, done that.
posted by Rhomboid at 10:10 AM on November 29, 2006


um, COMMENT, COMMENT, not post.
posted by StickyCarpet at 10:11 AM on November 29, 2006


I dunno. Let's remove all the names and find out.

Okay let's play then!
posted by TwoWordReview at 10:12 AM on November 29, 2006


Where is Thomcat anyway? I miss him. Is he ok?
posted by amberglow at 10:20 AM on November 29, 2006


I think it's more gratifying to be able to go undetected than to be predictable.

(Sgt. Serenity's messages all seem to smell like alcohol and puke.)
posted by crunchland at 10:21 AM on November 29, 2006


"I think it's more gratifying to be able to go undetected than to be predictable."

I knew you were going to say that.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 10:24 AM on November 29, 2006


Bevets.
posted by agropyron at 10:36 AM on November 29, 2006


I can often tell jonmc because he's the only one who consistently writes about jonmc.
posted by leftcoastbob at 10:40 AM on November 29, 2006


If we're talking about comments; dong_resin and stav.

If we're talking about posts; Hama7.
posted by davehat at 10:41 AM on November 29, 2006


I can often tell jonmc because he's the only one who consistently writes about jonmc.

I've considered writing a retort to this assertion but there's no way to do that without digging myself in deeper, so I won't.
posted by jonmc at 10:48 AM on November 29, 2006


I've...myself...I...

See?! 3/23 words were pronouny self-references!
posted by cortex at 10:55 AM on November 29, 2006


(well, that's cause the only things I can honestly speak about are the things I see and hear myself, not because I think I'm so great. Although...I am pretty great. I'm smart, I'm funny and I'm a sexy motherfucker to boot.)
posted by jonmc at 11:05 AM on November 29, 2006


I can usually pick out comments by jonmc, EB, quonsar and fivefreshfish before I reach their bylines. y2karl's posts are instantly recognizable but not his comments. The only one I can explain is quonsar, whose comments are consistently cranky and uncapitalized. With the others, I just sort of get a feeling and it usually turns out to be right.
posted by LeeJay at 11:09 AM on November 29, 2006


Smedleyman
loquacious
It's Raining Florence Henderson
bugbread
bevets
posted by gigawhat? at 11:15 AM on November 29, 2006


Oh, and 9 times out of 10, it seems that when I read an excellent, illuminating story-comment in AskMe about lost love or redemption or what it means to be a man, I realize that it was written by paulsc.
posted by saladin at 11:19 AM on November 29, 2006


On a good day, when the air is clear, and the horizon far, and if I am at last able to look up from the darkness, I can occassionally recognize my own writings. And sometimes they're mine, sometimes they're written by... him. But always, always, there is jello.
posted by blue_beetle at 11:22 AM on November 29, 2006


loquacious. quonsar.
posted by Kwine at 11:25 AM on November 29, 2006


Harry Morgan, dhoyt, jenleigh
posted by OmieWise at 11:32 AM on November 29, 2006


pyramid termite's posts are always easy to spot

the distinct lack of periods

and lack of sentence structure

are like poetry

or something
posted by fandango_matt at 11:41 AM on November 29, 2006


Right, basically most of the people with easily recognizable writing styles were around a lot four, five years ago, leaving the place to us clones.
posted by furiousthought at 11:45 AM on November 29, 2006


cortex. It's that mixture of humor, oddity and always hitting the nail in the head. He is also recognizable cause he shoots the funniest thing when two users are about to kill each other, and that helps to ease the tension.
posted by micayetoca at 11:50 AM on November 29, 2006


Oh yeah, I'll have to add loquacious and bugbread. loq has a distinctive style combining clever vulgarity with, well, loquaciousness. bugbread is another one I can't really explain.
posted by LeeJay at 12:00 PM on November 29, 2006


(Sgt. Serenity's messages all seem to smell like alcohol and puke.)

Where is sarge, anyway? And thomcatspike? And clavdivs, dammit? I kept waiting for him to show up and kick me around in that Gorbachev thread.
posted by languagehat at 12:07 PM on November 29, 2006


I'm pretty good at spotting occhiblu, EB, quonsar, loquacious, paulsc, grumblebee and delmoi. Oh, and fandango_matt before the img tag was deleted.
posted by deborah at 12:08 PM on November 29, 2006


Another one I can recognize (though due to no good reason) is that stupid Ceiling Cat. It's a good joke that got old really quick.

Can't wait to see the day when someone calls for his bannination. *Oops did I thought that or did I type it out loud?*
posted by micayetoca at 12:14 PM on November 29, 2006


Oh yeah, I'll second the paulsc-recognizability-for-awesomeness.
posted by onalark at 12:16 PM on November 29, 2006


Speaking of the difference between comments and posts, why is it that when I click to flag a comment, I am taken to a page with the title "Flag a Post", which says "Flag this post" twice in the text, and has a submit button with the caption "Flag this Post"?

I tried to flag a comment for the first time yesterday, and became so confused that I cried.
posted by trip and a half at 12:19 PM on November 29, 2006


Aw man I have spent 2 years here and I am not even memorable. Oh, well. I'll just go back to Google Answers, I guess.
posted by The Deej at 12:20 PM on November 29, 2006


Oh, and I meant to say I often recognize comments from Ethereal Bligh, grumblebee and languagehat. Sorry for the derail.
posted by trip and a half at 12:23 PM on November 29, 2006


oh yeah--clavdiv's gone too--sad.

we need a Mefi detective agency thing.
posted by amberglow at 12:34 PM on November 29, 2006


OmieWise I find I can recognize as well. Always very erudite and knowledgeable, but with a sense of humor and never any condescension.
posted by jonmc at 12:35 PM on November 29, 2006


I generally read the names first and then the comments, so the only people I'm ever likely to try and recognize while reading are grumblebee and EB. So, really, I have a 50-50 chance of being right right off the bat.
posted by jacquilynne at 12:43 PM on November 29, 2006


Smedleyman is totally recognizable too, just by the crazy use of the enter key alone.

/no offense
posted by stinkycheese at 12:48 PM on November 29, 2006


grumblebee (earnest, use of capital letters, wife, longish), bugbread (meticulous reasoning, analogies to mundane examples), EB (long, well-reasoned), amberglow (idiosyncratic use of pseudo-em dashes), languagehat (relative brevity, especially lucidity).

Those are the main ones for me, probably because I find myself reading their comments more than others.
posted by smorange at 12:54 PM on November 29, 2006


ikkyu2, when I started reading AskMe, then he took a break and I wondered if he ran away to join a band or something, but now he's back and that's good. And languagehat. Someday I'll flame out just to get him to notice me.
posted by ersatzkat at 1:01 PM on November 29, 2006


languagehat, EB, grumblebee.

I also find that I read a comment, laugh out loud, and then see mr_crash_davis's name.
posted by Alt F4 at 1:31 PM on November 29, 2006


I recognise amberglow because he uses ": >" as a smiley and no one else does.
posted by matthewr at 2:01 PM on November 29, 2006


crash. amberglow. quonsar. EB.
TCS, god love 'im.
miguel, of course.
clavdivs, when he was here, most recognisable of all. S_@_Linwood, once upon a time.
dios, for the obviousness of the threads he goes into (or did).
troutfishing, in those days, fighting the good fight.
jonmc - he's practically a brand name now.
wendell, short and pithy, just like his comments...
posted by dash_slot- at 2:10 PM on November 29, 2006


*notices ersatzkat, waves*
posted by languagehat at 2:41 PM on November 29, 2006


Jessamyn's answers in AskMe are instantly recognizable to me. Anything by Miguel or grumblebee too.
posted by smich at 2:43 PM on November 29, 2006


For me it's k8t and thepinksuperhero (k8t more so than tps). I end up agreeing with them while reading their comments and then I get to the end and find out it's them. At this point I'm almost able to predict it. Particularly if it's a comment that really resonates with me or my experiences. I also recognize klangklangston sometimes too before I get to his name. I think it's the youthful authoritative confidence mixed with a splash of aggression he sometimes displays.
posted by ml98tu at 2:46 PM on November 29, 2006


Pot and Kettle
posted by Arch_Stanton at 2:59 PM on November 29, 2006


You can't spell "Dr. Ethereal Bligh" without "tl;dr."

Which is sad, as he has well-reasoned things to say - but MEGO
posted by jtron at 3:07 PM on November 29, 2006


y2karl's posts (not comments) are the only ones I'd bet money on being able to identify. I can make fairly confident guesses on a lot more but not to the same degree of certainty.
posted by juv3nal at 3:09 PM on November 29, 2006


I have a flawless ability to recognize those who have marked any or all of my comments as a favorite.
posted by Eideteker at 3:20 PM on November 29, 2006


Can you explain why?

If I had to guess, I'd say that we pick up on distinctive stylistic markers. Like: grumblebee tends to use parentheses to make asides that are often little jokes or exclamations (like this!) and though he tends to write longer sentences, they're often strings of independent clauses sperated by commas, so that when he writes a single-clauses sentence, which he often begins with a coordinating conjunction, it seems to flow with his longer ones. He uses independent clauses, he uses parallelism, and he often uses both together in threes. And his usage is similar to these two sentences I'm writing now.

He also favors a construction that departs from his normal reliance on independent clauses -- when he uses a dependent clause, it's often in the construction: INDPENDENT CLAUSE and DEPENDENT CLAUSE, where the dependent clause adds depth to what the independent clause describes.

He tends to write short paragraphs which are almost always seperated by double-spacing.

His prose is also often marked by introductory qualifying adverbs or adverb phrases.

Does that answer your question?
posted by eustacescrubb at 3:21 PM on November 29, 2006 [1 favorite]


I can usually spot Smedleyman, tkchrist and dhartung. Mainly because they seem to have similar experiences to mine and when I'm reading a post and nodding while thinking to myself "I know just what he means..." invariably it's one of those three. Plus Smedleyman has a really distinctive style.

(Not that those three are anything alike one another, I just find myself identifying with each of them for different reasons.)

I can also always spot Astro Zombie and Astro Zombie 3's comments. Astro Zombie 2 is more of an enigma.

I'm about fifty fifty with loquacious. Half the time I'll guess right, half the time I'm way off.
posted by quin at 3:23 PM on November 29, 2006


!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! man, I gotta start adding distinctive stylistic quirks to my writing !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
posted by jonson at 3:32 PM on November 29, 2006


Not necessary to !, jonson. If it is a quality post, chances are is is yours.
posted by Cranberry at 3:44 PM on November 29, 2006


You would have written "it is yours" the first time.
posted by Cranberry at 3:45 PM on November 29, 2006


I appreciate the commenters who are funny, but I will not attempt to list them (and probably misspell their nicks).
posted by Cranberry at 3:46 PM on November 29, 2006


d-d-d-d-id s-s-s-s-someone s-s-s-say d-d-distinctive wr-wr-wr-writing s-s-st-st-uh form?
posted by The Deej at 3:47 PM on November 29, 2006


Just the standards. Though I have to say I find the guys saying paulsc for right-on-ness disturbing. I know it's him because it starts out making sense but then goes batshitinsane. I also can tell LoriFLA and jamjam for less then complimentary reasons.
posted by dame at 4:01 PM on November 29, 2006 [1 favorite]


I go through phases of recognition. I don't really notice language structure so much (unless it's terrible). It's the ideas that do it for me. Lately I spot Smedlyman pretty quick. He usually nails an issue down and basically shows a lot of perception. Let's see...before that I guess I was noticing Loquacious for the wide or varied knowledge. Amberglow always does this: :-> and is active during the political discussions. Languagehat usually has some interesting thing to say about..language. Jonmc is like all punk rock and struting his stuff. Divine_Wino seems like a literary tough guy. If I had an Anus (Who's been missing lately) is funny and scatological (no surprise there). EB has those long disquisitions with incredibly thoughtful and what seem like learned comments. More than 3 paragraphs and it's usually Ethereal Bligh. Monju_Batsu comments authoritatively on legal matters, as did Dios (where did he go?), except Dios comments were weighed down a bit by an agenda. That neocon in training style of thinking. KlangKlangston is usually writing tough about music. Bugbread is meticulious and analytical. Caddis has good ideas and is funny and cranberry is a nut (a good nut!) and TPS is like everyone's fave kid sister. As for me...I obviously spend way too much time here...
posted by Skygazer at 4:04 PM on November 29, 2006


oh yh, dhartung. Something cool, methodical and informative in his style.
posted by dash_slot- at 4:19 PM on November 29, 2006


I recognize Skygazer. Now, anyway.
posted by hal9k at 4:24 PM on November 29, 2006


Y doze int enni 1 wreck og knize mai rite eng sty yule? HOLLA! @#
posted by Falconetti at 4:39 PM on November 29, 2006


Posts? only y2karl

Comments? EB (length), quonsar (biting humor, total brevity), jonmc (tenacious, especially on prejudice, also most down to earth).
posted by caddis at 4:44 PM on November 29, 2006


oh yeah--clavdiv's gone too--sad.

Shouldn't that be clavdivs's ?

At any rate, clavdivs last commented in the blue on October 20th. Before that, he commented on August 6th. 'Cause he's the Bomb. And his Halloween despot costume would be Danton. So, he ain't exactly gone.

Sgt. Serenity comented last on November 14th. Like, two weeks ago, man.

Thomcatspike, on the other hand, has been absent since February this year.
posted by y2karl at 5:03 PM on November 29, 2006


If I had an Anus (Who's been missing lately)

He's not missing (I'm surprised you didn't recognize his writing style).

as did Dios (where did he go?), except Dios comments were weighed down a bit by an agenda

Having an agenda isn't it. Plenty of members have agendas. It's that his is different than 99 percent of the norm here so it sticks out.

There are exceptions, but the majority of names being mentioned have commented anywhere from 12 to 20 thousand times, so that might have something to do with it.
posted by justgary at 5:06 PM on November 29, 2006


I can't remember his name, some hockey reference, methinks, but the mormon guy who always comments in askme self-help threads that the OP should "accept jesus as savior," pray, etc.

also:

It's Raining Florence Henderson
jonmc
posted by M.C. Lo-Carb! at 5:17 PM on November 29, 2006


M.C. Lo-Carb, you're referring to the member formerly known as rinkjustice, who was banned, and is now back under some other moniker.

Paulsc is the only member I can consistently recognize without seeing his/her username.
posted by jayder at 5:37 PM on November 29, 2006


Do please spill a little on the pavement for my fallen holie.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 5:43 PM on November 29, 2006


I also can tell LoriFLA and jamjam for less then complimentary reasons.

Could you elaborate?
posted by LoriFLA at 6:25 PM on November 29, 2006


Could you elaborate?

I'd recognize that snarky tone anywhere!
posted by found missing at 6:42 PM on November 29, 2006


found missing, I am sincerely curious. I didn't intend to come across as snarky.
posted by LoriFLA at 6:49 PM on November 29, 2006


I don't recognize styles blind very often, but I do often get to the end of the post, see the name, and think, oh yes, par for the course from so and so.
posted by orange swan at 6:49 PM on November 29, 2006


just kidding
posted by found missing at 6:50 PM on November 29, 2006


Hell, sometimes I can't even recognize my own writing.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:08 PM on November 29, 2006


pyramid termite...a big fan of the ellipses...
posted by A dead Quaker at 7:19 PM on November 29, 2006


I used to be able to pick out my own posts, but not so much anymore.

I can recognize Loquacious, Smedleyman, Dios, Amberglow, Bugbread, a couple Astro Zombies, quonsar, and Y2Karl, usually.
posted by Balisong at 7:33 PM on November 29, 2006


Holy crap, I miss thomcatspike.
posted by knave at 8:13 PM on November 29, 2006


jonmc, EB, y2karl (as others have said, posts more than comments), miguel cardoso, languagehat.

What's funnier is that I don't always recognize my own spouse's MeFi posts until I read the name, much of the time. Sometimes I think "heh, I should have Jason read this one, he would like it," and then I see that he wrote it.
posted by litlnemo at 8:39 PM on November 29, 2006


What's an enigma?
posted by Astro Zombie 2 at 8:43 PM on November 29, 2006


Twenty bucks, same as in town.
posted by cortex at 8:51 PM on November 29, 2006 [1 favorite]


In askme, I recognize Melissa May, Scody, occhiblu but thats more on the content than the language structure. Eriko, loquacious, Ethereal Bligh and delmoi in Mefi.
posted by dhruva at 8:57 PM on November 29, 2006


All of the above examples, plus anyone who is compelled to sign their handle after every comment.

--exlotuseater
posted by exlotuseater at 8:58 PM on November 29, 2006


seriously, every one.

--exlotuseater
posted by exlotuseater at 8:59 PM on November 29, 2006


à la Todd Lokken
--exlotuseater
posted by exlotuseater at 9:01 PM on November 29, 2006


Unfortunately, Mr Lokken hasn't made a comment since June.
posted by bob sarabia at 9:36 PM on November 29, 2006


He also favors a construction that departs from his normal reliance on independent clauses -- when he uses a dependent clause, it's often in the construction: INDPENDENT CLAUSE and DEPENDENT CLAUSE, where the dependent clause adds depth to what the independent clause describes.

Good golly jeepers CREEPERS! I'm going to have to take a close look at my writing. Or maybe I'll ask my WIFE to have a look! Now, how can I make this post a bit longer ... ?
posted by grumblebee at 9:43 PM on November 29, 2006


Astro Zombie 2 : What's an enigma?

Well according to the Wiki, the Enigma was a portable cipher machine used to encrypt and decrypt secret messages.

So clearly what I was saying is that I've always suspected that your are an electro-mechanical device designed for cryptography. I imagine it's all the rotors and transformers you have attached to your flesh that made me draw that conclusion.

My apologies if you are simply a complicated human-form printing press/ laundry dryer, but I hope you can see where my confusion came from.
posted by quin at 10:10 PM on November 29, 2006


Ok folks, put your sleuthing skills to the test. "We've secretly switched your regular user ids with new instant ids masquerading as regular ids. Let's watch!"

*To play along, you should close immediately the popup box from WordReplacer that gives the game away. Also: capitalization seems quite random, which is also a giveaway. I also didn't catch everybody--doesn't mean you're not worthy of being punk'd!
posted by war wrath of wraith at 10:46 PM on November 29, 2006


Enigma Power, Engage!
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 10:48 PM on November 29, 2006


litlnemo : "What's funnier is that I don't always recognize my own spouse's MeFi posts until I read the name, much of the time. Sometimes I think 'heh, I should have Jason read this one, he would like it,' and then I see that he wrote it."

What makes me feel, from time to time, like a complete and total ass is when someone links to a really old thread, and I read through it, and I reach one comment that is absolutely right on the fucking money, and I think "holy shit, who wrote this? This is perfect!" and I reach the bottom, and...it's me. And I realize that I must have some kind of latent egomania.
posted by Bugbread at 10:54 PM on November 29, 2006


war wrath of wraith: while that's incredibly cool, unfortunately joke threads are the hardest to identify people in, because one-liners are too short for the stylistic differences to show up well.
posted by Bugbread at 10:56 PM on November 29, 2006


"Latent?"

/sorry - had to
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 10:57 PM on November 29, 2006


bugbread, I was thinking the same thing. Just wanted to put it out there, but didn't want to spend too much time on it searching for "worthy" threads... Something for future reference perhaps.
posted by war wrath of wraith at 11:01 PM on November 29, 2006


Ikkyu2, Jessamyn, Languagehat.

(Did anyone else search for their own name on this page and then feel generic? ;) )
posted by acoutu at 11:21 PM on November 29, 2006


I was starting to be able to recognize riotgrrl69, but then she disappeared.
posted by gsteff at 11:24 PM on November 29, 2006


Why the shit are my nunpissing ears burning like an asshole fire?

--Todd Lokken
posted by loquacious at 11:42 PM on November 29, 2006


ND¢, at least in the grey.
posted by Tuwa at 11:47 PM on November 29, 2006


bugbread, I am so with you on this. More than once I've been ready to defend to the death a really great point, only to realize that [oh for fuck's sake] I was the one that made it.

I really hate it when I don't recognize my own words.
posted by quin at 11:54 PM on November 29, 2006


I can usually identify occhiblu's comments before I see that it was her. I can also identify my own comments when I happen upon them in threads I'm browsing from a couple years ago.

But none of you losers can identify my sockpuppet, because I totally camouflage and obscure my inimitable style! Ha ha!
posted by ikkyu2 at 12:16 AM on November 30, 2006


I should start having a Style. Maybe I will start fucking swearing in all of my comments. Hmm...

no.
posted by blacklite at 1:25 AM on November 30, 2006


Oh, yeah, I forgot ND¢, I can recognize him too.
posted by Bugbread at 1:26 AM on November 30, 2006


Smedleyman. In a good way.
posted by slimepuppy at 2:10 AM on November 30, 2006


I generally recognize several of the above mentioned (Smedleyman by mere visual construction, usually), but bardic's comments, for some reason, are particularly noticeable. And generally notable; usually because he's sworn to fight the good fight.

I'll click on a politico/theologico/philosophico-thread and it's like hearing a neighbor's lawn mower cough into life on a Saturday morning: bardic's in there somewhere, about to carve a swath.
posted by Haruspex at 3:25 AM on November 30, 2006 [1 favorite]


I can recognize God. He hasn't posted yet, but I'll tell you when he does.
posted by TwelveTwo at 4:03 AM on November 30, 2006


Delmoi, elpapacito, smedleyman, EB, and amberglow (those pointy emoticons are such a tip-off. :>)
Quonsar.
jonmc has such a consistent, conversational writing style that I 'hear' his comments as much as I read them. I'm not sure how he does it, but I always imagine him speaking as opposed to typing.
Bevets, duh. The only time I caught him not being a total 'bot was when he called me out for calling him a total 'bot.
Jonson in comments, because they're usually about jonson (metatalk only. Although I can usually guess a jonson fpp on MeFi.)
And one of my favorites, Nickyskye. Her writing style always struck me as effortlessly elegant, and she has a knack for tossing out the most perfectly complementary, appropriate links in her comments. She's like a virtual innoculation against meh. Come back, Nickyskye!
posted by maryh at 4:26 AM on November 30, 2006


And one of my favorites, Nickyskye. Her writing style always struck me as effortlessly elegant, and she has a knack for tossing out the most perfectly complementary, appropriate links in her comments. She's like a virtual innoculation against meh. Come back, Nickyskye!

I wish she would come back. Her comments epitomize intelligence, insight and grace, with a complete lack of hate-filled snark that oozes from certain folks here. I really miss her presence.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 4:52 AM on November 30, 2006


konolia.
posted by gaspode at 6:00 AM on November 30, 2006


jonmc has such a consistent, conversational writing style that I 'hear' his comments as much as I read them.

Heh. I usually do try to write like I'm talking to somebody. I don't really feel comfortable writing any other way, even though I do like reading other people who can.

And I'm surprised I'm the only one who mentioned Divine Wino. He's pretty much head and shoulders above 99% of the people I see online in terms of turning a phrase and I thought that even before we became friends, and he's definitely distinctive.
posted by jonmc at 6:09 AM on November 30, 2006


O RLY?
posted by Eideteker at 6:16 AM on November 30, 2006


oh. my bad.
posted by jonmc at 6:20 AM on November 30, 2006


Not always but sometimes Divine Wino or loquacious or even occasionally cortex will appear at the bottom of something I'm smiling at and I will not be surprised whichever way - not to say they are all the same at all but rather I tweak to the word bursts with eclectic metaphors or the somesuch. All good.

Maybe there's a dozen or more I would likely guess 95% of the time for good or not so good reasons.
posted by peacay at 6:30 AM on November 30, 2006


Holy crap, I miss thomcatspike.

And that link reminds me that I miss tamim.
posted by languagehat at 6:44 AM on November 30, 2006


Yeah, whatever happened to Nickyskye? I liked her.

Completely unrelatedly, due to watching too much 21 Jump Street lately, when I read comments, I mentally hear them in Doug Penthall's voice.
posted by Bugbread at 6:58 AM on November 30, 2006


Completely unrelatedly, due to watching too much 21 Jump Street lately,

mmmm, Holly Robinson. The first girl I ever got into heavy petting with looked a lot like her.
posted by jonmc at 7:13 AM on November 30, 2006


My wife once posted a question to ask, and since I don't really check to see who the poster is, I thought, this is just the sort of question she's been trying to answer, I shall read it and look the hero by passing its advice off as my own.

I'd also like to use this thread as my Paris Hiltonesque launching point to Mefi-celebrity since no one seems to recognize my writing style.

I think my unleaded writing style will involve using words in hip and "edgy" new ways with — dashes and things thrown about. See you in the threads.

— d
posted by drezdn at 7:20 AM on November 30, 2006


The kind of fame you get from signing your posts is not the kind of fame you want.
posted by jacquilynne at 7:24 AM on November 30, 2006


Please remember to bring the brats, drezdn.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 7:25 AM on November 30, 2006


You remembered!

I've always got some simmering on the back burner for—special occassions.
posted by drezdn at 7:39 AM on November 30, 2006


JustGary: Having an agenda isn't it. Plenty of members have agendas. It's that his is different than 99 percent of the norm here so it sticks out.

Well there are agendas and then there are AGENDAS.
What really interests me though is that people have identifiable approaches or patterns to what they think or imagine, conscious or not, and there's a thin line between a conscious agenda and a psychological state or pathology, that lead them to their thoughts and ideas, so what I find fascinating usually is not so much
what someone thinks, but how they think and the factors that bring them to that.

It also amazes me that the need for socialization is so strong in humans that we're able to sit, in front of keyboards and have a unique mental vision and even an emotional response simply by looking at words on a screen. Humans are weird...maaaan.

*Passes spliff to If I had hosted an Uranus*
posted by Skygazer at 7:50 AM on November 30, 2006


I really miss her presence.

Me too. I wish she'd start posting again. Her comments wouldn't leave you alone, once you started readling them you just couldn't stop and afterwards you'd have food for thought for days.
posted by soundofsuburbia at 8:04 AM on November 30, 2006


*holds arm up to Skygazer*

Go ahead, twist it.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 8:19 AM on November 30, 2006


Completely unrelatedly, due to watching too much 21 Jump Street lately, when I read comments, I mentally hear them in Doug Penthall's voice.

God I looove(d) that show, had crushes on all of the boys. I had a sex dream about Peter DeLuise once. (You'd think Johnny Depp, amirite? But DeLuise was also haaaahhht.)

Back to the topic at hand -- Better question: how often can you match the "anonymous -- human relations" post to a particular Mefite?
posted by ClaudiaCenter at 8:21 AM on November 30, 2006


So far I ain't seen my monicker mentioned here. Maybe I need to comment about jonmc more.
posted by davy at 8:23 AM on November 30, 2006


I may not know his writing voice, but I can always sense when davy is feeling neglected.
posted by Astro Zombie at 8:38 AM on November 30, 2006


I can spot a Divine_Wino comment instantly: the word choices and juxtaposition, the bizarre images, the cutting humor.

I also find I can recognize a gompa comment-- I'll be reading a comment, totally agreeing, thinking 'Wow! This poster is right on! Must be gompa." And then, sure enough, I see 'posted by gompa.' In gompa's case it's the writing style and he's also a real-life friend of mine so I know how he thinks.
posted by Fuzzy Monster at 9:15 AM on November 30, 2006


A lot of people here have lamented nickyskye, and I'd like to add my voice to that chorus. For those curious, I emailed her several months back when she first disappeared and she replied (after some delay) that she was in the middle of serious health problems, and then shortly thereafter she dropped out of the conversation and has not responded. I hate to sound melodramatic, but I'm honestly not sure if she's alive, which would be a tremendous loss if her real life personality was anything like the intelligent & charming persona she exuded on Metafilter.
posted by jonson at 9:55 AM on November 30, 2006


"klangklangston sometimes too before I get to his name. I think it's the youthful authoritative confidence mixed with a splash of aggression he sometimes displays."

It's plumage that I display in order to attract mates.

"KlangKlangston is usually writing tough about music."

I believe in muscular musical diplomacy.


(I tend to recognize jon and EB, occassionally loq and cortex, and often delmoi and tomcat—though I haven't seen him in a while— but most everyone has a fairly educated patois. Once I get into a conversation I can recognize most folks, but just skimming, it's catch as catch can).
posted by klangklangston at 10:03 AM on November 30, 2006


Oh, and on AskMe, paulsc and Steve DB from their prolific bredth and weird hobbyhorses.
posted by klangklangston at 10:06 AM on November 30, 2006


jonson I sense your sincerity but speculating to the nth degree is a bit umm, extreme. NickySkye has in fact disappeared before -- for the same reason you have divulged here -- so I expect that she is not up for the internet at the moment. No, I don't know anything for certain but I knew of this at the beginning of the year at any rate.
posted by peacay at 10:19 AM on November 30, 2006


If I had a hosted anus: *holds arm up to Skygazer* Go ahead, twist it.

*Puts on rubber gloves. Twists arm.*
posted by Skygazer at 10:20 AM on November 30, 2006


The trick, I think, is to start with a noun and follow it closely with an entirely uncalled-for personal pronoun ("I"), so as to make it seem as if the subject in question is crucially bound up with your own affairs and indistinguishable from your deepest preoccupations. You must annoy.

Then you add an unfunny joke about maroons or mad cows (strained and effete, if possible) and effortfully (as opposed to effortlessly) add an incidental description of your supposedly exotic surroundings. For instance: "The heavy fogs or Oregon descend upon me as I speak and my erection is more noticeable than I would wish. And yet I yearn for the days when MetaFilter was bleak and adversarial and "posting" was a mortal sin and young fauns bristled in the deep fronds, eager to frolic and bolt..."

Length, frequency, volume and sameness is all that matters, in the end.
posted by MiguelCardoso at 10:29 AM on November 30, 2006 [1 favorite]


Back when there were img tags, I always knew a bob sarabia comment.
posted by nickmark at 10:47 AM on November 30, 2006


Nickyskye is great. I hope she comes back. She's just the sort of person this site needs more of.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 11:02 AM on November 30, 2006


My ex boyfriend and all his sock puppets - Because it's just so obvious

My brother - years of experience
posted by footnote at 12:18 PM on November 30, 2006


peacay - that's good news, sorry for the melodramatic tone of my post. I was just a little concerned given the nature of the health problems & the sudden lack of email response, but most likely you're right, it's probably just a self-imposed online timeout.
posted by jonson at 12:28 PM on November 30, 2006


I've been worried about her, too, jonson. I hope peacay is right.
posted by maryh at 1:33 PM on November 30, 2006


NickySkye was very sick. Last I heard, she got through surgery, though. I'm emailing her now to tell her people are worried.
posted by CunningLinguist at 3:12 PM on November 30, 2006


(Did anyone else search for their own name on this page and then feel generic? ;) )

I totally did--i'm so cheesy : >
posted by amberglow at 3:23 PM on November 30, 2006


Smedleyman, definitely

and troybob when he was in his rhyming phase

I really always assume everyone is typing and forming their sentences the way they would talk in real life.
posted by amberglow at 3:30 PM on November 30, 2006


[a few comments removed, please keep people's off-metafilter lives off of metafilter]
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 8:16 PM on November 30, 2006


dame writes "Though I have to say I find the guys saying paulsc for right-on-ness disturbing. I know it's him because it starts out making sense but then goes batshitinsane."

I think that his BSI% isn't much greater than the average but because of his commitment to answer you see it a lot more in total.

bugbread writes "What makes me feel, from time to time, like a complete and total ass is when someone links to a really old thread, and I read through it, and I reach one comment that is absolutely right on the fucking money, and I think 'holy shit, who wrote this? This is perfect!' and I reach the bottom, and...it's me. And I realize that I must have some kind of latent egomania."

This happens to me all the time, often, sometimes. Even worse I'll read a comment that set me off originally and will have started mentally composing the same rebutal when I realise the thread is closed and no one is paying attention. Matt any progress on putting the posting year in the posted by line in the archives?
posted by Mitheral at 8:20 PM on November 30, 2006




(Sgt. Serenity's messages all seem to smell like alcohol and puke.)

Where is sarge, anyway?


I'm here LH - Crunchland, are you making light of the fact that i'm a recovering alcoholic ?

I cant remember posting about it on mefi and in fact i've only ever mentioned it to jessamyn in private emails - but you know - if it bothers you, maybe a meeting would help you.
posted by sgt.serenity at 8:09 AM on December 1, 2006


Hi sarge! Pay crunchie no mind; he likes playing Mr. Bitter and throwing darts at people.
posted by languagehat at 10:46 AM on December 1, 2006


No. I'm saying your messages are usually brutal and belligerent; berating and bad-tempered. Like a drunkard looking for a fight. That you are an alcoholic is no surprise. That you are recovering is. Best of luck to you in the battle with the bottle.
posted by crunchland at 10:49 AM on December 1, 2006 [1 favorite]


That you are an alcoholic is no surprise. That you are recovering is.

Jesus christ, man. I'm breaking that one out at parties, let me tell you what.
posted by cortex at 11:40 AM on December 1, 2006


Nice personal attack there, crunchland. I've never advocated for a time-out, but I think one is warranted for that comment.
posted by deborah at 12:28 PM on December 1, 2006


jeez crunch. I don't know what you are talking about regarding sarge's comments. brutal? belligerent? where? The only thing brutal and belligerent I see is your last few comments.
posted by caddis at 1:13 PM on December 1, 2006


Matt: Just tried to flag crunchland's nasty comment as "offensive content" and accidentally hit "double post" instead. Just so you know I'm not nuts. (Though, given his commenting style, it may well be a double post. And it certainly proves my point.)
posted by languagehat at 2:13 PM on December 1, 2006


Yeah, well, I guess you never got abusive, irate emails from him, or even looked at some of his comments. It seems pretty obvious to me. Though I admit to having absolutely no patience or sympathy for alcoholics, unrelated to Sarge or Metafilter. But if you find my comment there offensive, so be it.
posted by crunchland at 3:17 PM on December 1, 2006


Yeah, well, I guess you never got abusive, irate emails from him

No, but I've gotten perfectly nice e-mails from him.

I admit to having absolutely no patience or sympathy for alcoholics


I've known alcoholics and I've known assholes, and I like the alcoholics a lot better. For one thing, they have a better shot at recovery.
posted by languagehat at 3:37 PM on December 1, 2006 [3 favorites]


ouch!
posted by caddis at 3:46 PM on December 1, 2006


Though I admit to having absolutely no patience or sympathy for alcoholics

Recovering alcholics, the ones who really do it, and work the 12 steps to their full, are, in my opinion, among the bravest human beings on the planet. I'd like to see you honestly work steps 8 and 9, crunchland, because anyone who can do that with sincerity deserves nothing but respect.
posted by eustacescrubb at 4:23 PM on December 1, 2006


CunningLinguist just dropped me a brief but nice email pointing out this thread. It seems odd to comment now on top of conflict. I do want to respect the conflict going on though. I’m anxious this'll sound gushy to a ghastly degree by comparison, lol, typically long-winded, and personal. yikes.

Maryh, Blazecock Pileon and bugbread, such generous praise! Thank you guys for saying such great things.

Thank you jonson for caring if I were alive. That means a lot to me. I’m sorry I didn’t reply sooner. It was a very close call there for a month. Nothing like a philosophical stretch hanging out with the shadow of the Grim Reaper at hand.

Thanks as well to jason’s_planet for your kind emails and calls in the last few months. I didn’t feel like socializing at any MeFi get togethers because I’ve been under a lot of stress, didn’t feel like being a visual wet blanket while I was hairless as a lightbulb, bloated as a marshmallow from the chemo/steroids. But it felt so nice to be cared about and missed.

MetaFilter has been such an excellent source of companionship over the last five years. Everybody’s voice here has a distinct character and many of your voices have been great companions, especially during this last year of intense cancer treatment. I love the MeFi hubbub between science and techno geeks, art lovers, the outright mischievous, culture aficionados, journalists, silly rascals, the ferociously opinionated, skeptics, linguists, musicians, people who know about Finland and 21st Century brainiacs of all ages.

Many posters’ style is instantly recognizable to me. I enjoy the vital, patchwork beauty of all the comments, especially the educated and piercingly funny ones, the various approaches to life, raucous snarks, gentle interest in obscure subjects, jabs, dry wit, wisdom and insight. MeFi conflict can be brutal but almost always educational. I’ve never seen cyber conflict handled better by moderators, nor the permission to voice intense anger, while being healthily reasonable about it, to what extent that is possible.

Metafilter’s cultural complexity is delightful and, in my experience, offers genuine intellectual and social companionship. I don’t think in five years coming here there has been a single time I’ve read posts and comments without thinking, “Wow, now, *that’s* interesting!”, “Good point!”, “Huh, didn’t know that.”, “Cool!”, “Better put that in my bookmarks.”, laughing or wanting to share the newly learned info with other friends.

To respond to questions about what happened to me: An unexpected series of events took place from April until November this year. Since my anonymity was blown in the Vanity Fair article and MetaFilter/internet username, NickySkye outed, I might as well talk about it directly.

During the arduous radiation treatments for late stage cancer I came home to find the body of this man, Andrew Merchansky, was found hanging under the front steps of the building where I live. A New York Post journalist, Mark Bulliet, who had come to cover this story, and I began chatting. I told him if I found out anything about the dead man I’d call him. A month later he turned up at my apartment, presumably to discuss Mr. Merchansky, but it was, surprisingly, to ask about my sister’s lawsuit, which had already been written about by the NY Post three years earlier. Mr. Bulliet contacted my sister, Caroline, and a couple of weeks later his article was published.

It was a life changing, cathartic and healing article for my sister and me.

And then came this article.

Based on the first article by the NY Post, Vanity Fair contacted my sister and me and they wrote a long article.

A few weeks before the Vanity Fair article came out I had an agonizingly painful, near-death experience, a stroke and several excruciating brain vaso-spasm ‘events’, spending the better part of a month in and out of the hospital, had a cool brain procedure, called a CAT angiogram while in the neurosurgery ICU. The stroke is likely to be a side effect of chemo but the cause is unknown at the moment. While I was in the hospital, my sister visited me from England and told me that out of the past a man confessed to this bombshell.

The impact of the stroke left it very difficult for me to communicate much either on the computer or phone, the sound and light too painful. For quite some time words didn’t come out as usual and I was extremely worried that yet another ‘brain event’ might occur at any minute. Life seemed to go by in moments, which might end at any second, rather than days. I’ve been quite fond of my brain/mind and cancer seemed much more like something I could live with than existing as stroke-induced ‘vegetable’. It’s been impossible to make my living street vending because I lost a lot of strength with the cancer, *cue violins*, the chemo/radiation treatment and then the stroke. Couldn’t afford the internet, (YAYY wi-fi). But I’m getting stronger and hopefully healthier now, day by day.

So, ‘nuff said, see you on the blue…and thanks for the kind consideration and encouragement. It means more to me than I can tell you. Thank you.
posted by nickyskye at 5:08 PM on December 1, 2006 [22 favorites]


I am glad you are still with us. Your post back in February is not something one quickly forgets. You have been a gem around here. Best of luck to you in this fight.
posted by caddis at 6:03 PM on December 1, 2006


Nice to hear from you caddis. :) Thanks, it's good to be alive.

louigi's post makes me look at individual posters' commenting style more carefully. It's interesting to see how a person's voice/character comes through their writing.
posted by nickyskye at 7:22 PM on December 1, 2006


God bless, nicky. I'm sorry for fearing the worst, and here's hoping your healing continues unabated.
posted by jonson at 6:34 PM on December 2, 2006


aww jonson, your fears were reality based. Please don't be sorry about being concerned. And, by the way, your posts and comments have consistently brought me a lot of happiness. There is something life-affirming that shines through your choices of posts. It's way cool. :)
posted by nickyskye at 1:31 PM on December 3, 2006


Thanks for the update about your offline life, nickyskye. I too was wondering about your disappearance. I wish you good luck with you health.
posted by dhruva at 8:06 PM on December 3, 2006


I'm glad you're ok, nicky--stay well : >
posted by amberglow at 2:48 PM on December 4, 2006


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