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Getting drunk with the penguins
May 16, 2009 1:49 AM   Subscribe

Meetups on six continents? Weak.

We must recruit one or more researchers for an Antarctic tenth anniversary meetup. Any members spending the winter at McMurdo Station or one of the other year-round camps? Surely some mefite knows a friend-of-a-friend in the program.
posted by ryanrs to MetaFilter Gatherings at 1:49 AM (56 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

Wintertime Antarctica is pretty much just computers and booze anyway, so let's give them accounts and call it a meetup. It wouldn't be any more contrived than any of the other things humans do on that continent.
posted by ryanrs at 1:49 AM on May 16, 2009


I believe I saw a twitter from Jessamyn roughly to this effect earlier this week.
posted by !Jim at 2:23 AM on May 16, 2009


They'd be pretty busy fighting the 'thing', surely..
posted by a non e mouse at 2:24 AM on May 16, 2009 [15 favorites]


I know there is/was a member in the Falkland islands, that is the most southerly member I know of.
posted by edgeways at 2:29 AM on May 16, 2009


There's got to be an Antarctican lurker around here somewhere. Maybe they just never thought to sign up. We could chip in or use some of the Tenth Annniversary Bailout Fund to activate an account.
posted by sambosambo at 4:10 AM on May 16, 2009


A friend of mine just got back from McMurdo. Oh well.
posted by Salvor Hardin at 4:31 AM on May 16, 2009


Can one of these people help?
posted by Shohn at 4:49 AM on May 16, 2009 [1 favorite]


If we can find someone in Antarctica who is down, I would be more than happy to sponsor their membership.
posted by SpiffyRob at 5:15 AM on May 16, 2009


I believe I saw a twitter from Jessamyn roughly to this effect earlier this week.

You did indeed. Followed by a link to super-cool Antarctica desktop wallpaper. I think this is an awesome idea.
posted by middleclasstool at 7:22 AM on May 16, 2009


I don't like this idea of sponsoring a stranger just to get the 7th continent represented. That said, I'm happy to research / arrange my own trip there if you can all agree to sponsor me.
posted by allkindsoftime at 7:37 AM on May 16, 2009


I don't like this idea of sponsoring a stranger just to get the 7th continent represented.

Word. People, think this through:

You want to do this semi-organically.

Locate some folks in Antarctica who are doing something interesting that's worthy of a post that will not, itself, be a double. Collect some interesting web resources on the subject, ideally including a decent blog or site run by one or more of the folks involved.

Post about it. Either count on them to check their referrer traffic, or drop them a courtesy email letting them know you liked their x and had posted it to mefi. Offer to gift them an account, or casually mention the situation to a mod and see if they'll comp it.

Antarctican signs up, joins in on thread about their stuff. Be on best behavior, encourage sense of warm and welcomingness, give them a reason to feel like sticking around. Someone take them under your wing and mentor them, encourage them to contribute to the site regularly. Try to steer them toward a level of enthusiasm that will have them talking about the site to at least a couple of friends down there.

After a few weeks, broach the subject of the tenth anniversary. Let them call the meetup, like it was their own idea. They'll invite some friends from the research station, have some lab-distilled everclear, try to explain "favoriting" and "sockpuppetry" and maybe why "the" is funny by itself. It'll be awkward and not particularly well-attended, but it'll be a god's-honest meetup.

Then, a couple weeks later, having not really understood the basic dynamic of the site's posting guidelines and having been abandoned by their esrtwhile mentor, they'll self-link on the front page and get banned.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:58 AM on May 16, 2009 [28 favorites]


Allkindsoftime can't meet up all by his lonesome - he needs at least one other MeFite to make it official. I volunteer. Now how do I set up a PayPal donation box so everyone can chip in for my airfare?
posted by Quietgal at 8:16 AM on May 16, 2009


Don't you really need two Antarcticans? Otherwise it's not really a meetup.
posted by WPW at 8:17 AM on May 16, 2009 [1 favorite]


Technically, we only need one Antactican Mefite. We see non-members and lurkers at meetups all the time. And we berate them mercilessly.
posted by sambosambo at 8:26 AM on May 16, 2009


And we berate them mercilessly.

But you let them leave alive? Wuss.
posted by infinitywaltz at 9:31 AM on May 16, 2009


MARCH OF THE MEFITES
posted by koeselitz at 10:28 AM on May 16, 2009


True fact: I'm so cool I shit penguins.
posted by loquacious at 10:40 AM on May 16, 2009


"Antarctican signs up, joins in on thread about their stuff. Be on best behavior, encourage sense of warm and welcomingness, give them a reason to feel like sticking around. Someone take them under your wing and mentor them, encourage them to contribute to the site regularly. Try to steer them toward a level of enthusiasm that will have them talking about the site to at least a couple of friends down there."

Fuck you, penguins! ARCTIC RESEARCH RULES!
posted by klangklangston at 11:27 AM on May 16, 2009


I know it's nowhere near good enough, but I'm hosting a meetup here in Prudhoe Bay, on the shores of the Arctic Ocean. It seems to be a poular (yet extremely weak) joke about the Arctic and penguins, so maybe that'll work.
posted by Nabubrush at 11:43 AM on May 16, 2009


That was supposed to be "popular", not "polar", but in an interesting instance of serendipity, it works either way.
posted by Nabubrush at 12:28 PM on May 16, 2009


Fuck you, penguins! ARCTIC RESEARCH RULES!

Yeah, yeah. You've got your bears and your...narwhals. Whatever. Terra Incognita's got penguins, baby, and fucking leopard seals.

McMurdo isn't the only base with an overwinter population; there's the Pole, and several British stations are open year-round.
posted by rtha at 1:12 PM on May 16, 2009


There was some antartic thread a while back, and someone mentioned that they worked there and it got sidebarred... just a sec, googling...
posted by From Bklyn at 1:31 PM on May 16, 2009


Leopard seals? I didn't realize I had to check my leopard for leaks.
posted by ooga_booga at 1:48 PM on May 16, 2009 [1 favorite]


Its worth noting that one of the other continents - South America - is only barely there thanks to Meatbomb (Where are you, Buenos Aires??)

Oddly, Africa is on a more solid footing.
posted by vacapinta at 1:52 PM on May 16, 2009


Is this our Antarctic Mefite? I think he's in San Francisco now (although his most recent comment links to a photo of a South Pole research team).
posted by Rhaomi at 2:00 PM on May 16, 2009


Oddly, Africa is on a more solid footing.
“Okay,” he said in disappointed tone, “well now I know you’re lying. I mean really, everybody knows that Africa hardly even has electricity, let alone computers, let alone COBOL programmers! You could have at least picked a place like Scotland!"
posted by niles at 2:02 PM on May 16, 2009


That's the one I was thinking of Rhaomi - and I was just about to find it no really really really I was. Really.
posted by From Bklyn at 2:15 PM on May 16, 2009


True fact: I'm so cool I shit penguins.

I've seen this happen and it's not a pleasant sight.

So please, everyone, try to avoid startling loquacious.
posted by aubilenon at 2:34 PM on May 16, 2009 [3 favorites]


So please, everyone, try to avoid startling loquacious.

Well, not so much because of the penguins, but because of the doberman pincer chaingun I carry around in my nerdpurse to deal with all the damn penguins.
posted by loquacious at 3:26 PM on May 16, 2009


Damn, cortex, you're one calculating mofo. I'm so onboard with this idea. I'm going trawling for Antarctican blogs right now.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 4:01 PM on May 16, 2009


I'm going to Antarctica, but unfortunately I will not be there until late August. I'd be happy to have a little one-person MeFi meetup at McMurdo, though, if it seems worthwhile despite the time delay.
posted by fermion at 5:01 PM on May 16, 2009


Fermion, you can totally put me in your suitcase! I'd go to Antarctica in a heartbeat. And then it would be a two-person meetup, if belated...it's a plan, right?
posted by librarylis at 5:11 PM on May 16, 2009


They'd be pretty busy fighting the 'thing', surely..

The Thing was based in the arctic, not the antarctic. I like your thinking though.
posted by dead cousin ted at 5:32 PM on May 16, 2009


The Thing was based in the arctic, not the antarctic.

O RLY?
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 6:21 PM on May 16, 2009


...who are doing something interesting that's worthy of a post that will not, itself, be a double. Collect some interesting web resources on the subject, ideally including a decent blog or site run by one or more of the folks involved.

Thanks a lot Cotex, now I don't feel welcome anymore since I've never done any of those things. I wonder if antarctic researchers have as a job perc some kind of high speed satellite hookup, that would give them a clear video chat presence.

Maybe another (pre-setup) format to involve them would be to sort of pretend we are doing a metafilter marathon, and that we have just cold called them on video chat to confince them to join.
posted by StickyCarpet at 6:39 PM on May 16, 2009


(cortex, you can fix that spelling blunder of your name if it bothers you, sorry)
posted by StickyCarpet at 7:07 PM on May 16, 2009


Let's say we succeed and get a couple of mefites in Antarctica (or at least a couple of Antarcticans on metafilter). What next?

Space.

It should be possible. God knows they're already on Twitter.
posted by sleeping bear at 7:16 PM on May 16, 2009 [1 favorite]


The Thing was based in the arctic, not the antarctic.

No, as Marisa Stole The Precious Thing says, it was definitely the Antarctic. I know because I have been researching all of the amorphous, malevolent, be-tentacled entities that have been encountered in that vicinity (see also Lovecraft's "At the Mountains of Madness") so as to be sure that I'm prepared for all eventualities.
posted by fermion at 8:09 PM on May 16, 2009


astro38 is member 1905 and also the owner of 75 Degrees South, a blog about living in (on?) (at?) Halley station. (His old blog now directs you to this new blog.) I can't tell if he's there at the moment, but he's certainly the guy you need to talk to.
posted by anastasiav at 9:23 PM on May 16, 2009 [1 favorite]


A few years ago, I read a great article on Antartica. I think it was on salon.com, but I can't find it just now.

Among many funny bits -like murder over a game of chess, keeping beer near freezing by placing it on the ground next to beds, calling the pasty, pale skin one gets after months 'toasty' and general cabin-fever-induced insanity- the article said that on the day the last plane of the season took off, effectively stranding them there for six months, everyone gathered to see it off, waving wistfully good-bye, and then went back inside to the ritual, yearly watching of The Thing.
posted by Cobalt at 10:09 PM on May 16, 2009 [2 favorites]


Cobalt: That sounds a lot like Big Dead Place.
posted by O9scar at 10:21 PM on May 16, 2009


FUCK ANTARCTICA! Goddamn penguin jockeys AMIRITE?!?

what'd I say? ... whatOOPS WRONG THRAED SRY G2G
posted by not_on_display at 10:34 PM on May 16, 2009


I have a friend who is among the small crew with the record number of winterovers at the Pole, and he'd probably even like Metafilter, but he's not there this season, so I'm no help at all.
posted by gingerbeer at 10:42 PM on May 16, 2009


O9scar: It is not, but it looks mondo cool and is going into my weekly reading list, effective immediately. Thanks!
posted by Cobalt at 10:54 PM on May 16, 2009


Hm! I've always wanted to know how to get hired as a programmer/IT guy in Antarctica. It's always just a passing thought and never did any thinking on it. The Google quest begins! I could probably try to make a Ask MeFi out of it if that fails.
posted by floam at 2:11 AM on May 17, 2009


True fact: I'm so cool I shit penguins.

Just because your turds are brown and rectangular with rounded corners, that does not make them Penguins.

Should you be struggling to tell the difference, here's a clue: one of these things is perfect with a nice cup of tea.

The other one isn't.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 2:50 AM on May 17, 2009 [1 favorite]


I want to work in Antarctica but I suspect my constant refusal to admit we're on Earth and not a barren Ice Moon would get on people's nerves.
posted by The Whelk at 5:50 AM on May 17, 2009 [1 favorite]


Is there a google map showing the location of all mefites? I'd like to see that.
posted by birdwatcher at 6:18 AM on May 17, 2009


birdwatcher: "Is there a google map showing the location of all mefites? I'd like to see that."

There's a google earth file that has locations of anyone who has done the lat/lon thingie on their user page: metafilter.com/metafilter.kml


Also: eponysteri{WHAP} hey that was a shoe someone threw! ...at my head!

posted by not_on_display at 10:15 AM on May 17, 2009


Then, a couple weeks later, having not really understood the basic dynamic of the site's posting guidelines and having been abandoned by their esrtwhile mentor, they'll self-link on the front page and get banned.

I do not support this part of the program -- it gives us no opportunity to refer to them as "metafilter's own."

FUCK ANTARCTICA! Goddamn penguin jockeys AMIRITE?!?

I think the preferred nomenclature is "Coldasfuckistaizanis."
posted by Devils Rancher at 10:58 AM on May 17, 2009


Interestingly, while John Carpenter's The Thing was set in Antarctica, the original The Thing from Another World was set in the Arctic. I can't tell from dead cousin ted's post which film he meant, because the original is also often referred to just as "The Thing".

I've spent a lot of time in a setting disturbingly similar to the one in the film. Not that I was thinking about it constantly at the time when we were weathered in there, me with seven other people that I basically didn't know from Adam, stuck in the frozen Arctic for a week. Not at all.
posted by Nabubrush at 6:53 PM on May 17, 2009


Matt, can we get one of these for meetups? It's the right color. You could put it on a trailer and take it on the road for a massive meetup tour.
posted by mds35 at 7:33 AM on May 18, 2009


...Linked from here.


C'mon Mr. Haughey. You can get a wide load sign, too. Call it the Wide Load Meetup Tour.
posted by mds35 at 7:35 AM on May 18, 2009


...credit to user above for finding link.
posted by mds35 at 7:37 AM on May 18, 2009


My sister is in Antarctica and I would greatly appreciate if you do not let her get involved with metafilter. I like to have a place to play without my family watching.
posted by silkygreenbelly at 4:44 PM on May 18, 2009 [1 favorite]


According to the WHO, even without Antarctica, Metafilter will achieve global pandemic status.
posted by gman at 4:47 AM on May 21, 2009


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