Call for input and interviewees for an essay on Metafilter June 23, 2014 2:52 PM   Subscribe

Hi, I'm in the process of writing a long essay on Metafilter for Hazlitt and I'd love to get some input from the community on it. In particular, if the site has intersected with your IRL life in a meaningful or interesting way, I'd love to talk to you.

The essay will be a sort of general introduction to Metafilter and its culture to outsiders, with a focus on the site’s intersections with users’ IRL lives as a limiting constraint and as a way to explain what someone in the fundraising thread called an “insanely engaged” userbase.

If you'd like to help me with this, I have a few questions for you:

1. If I’m missing anything from the following 3 lists that you’d like to add, please do so

  1.1 ‘Notable moments in MetaFilter–IRL intersections’ (I’m aware of and using this but it’s actually pretty light on IRL-related events):
    a. The updates-live-from-location that was happening in the 9/11 thread.
    b. The support of coldchef during Katrina, as discussed on the podcast here.
    c. The community support of mrbill through his wife’s passing (MeTa).
    d. The Russian Incident.
    e. The recent NYC wedding officiating.

  1.2 Examples of really incredible Ask or MeTa threads that show off not necessarily the depth and breadth of wisdom here, but more like examples of the
    a. almost-unbelievably serendipitous,
    b. dogged, or
    c. clever.

  1.3 Really really classic comments like:
    a. scarabic's how-to-dispose-of-a-body one, or
    b. the ask/guess culture one;
  comments that get linked back to again and again. Not your personal favourite but site-defining Recognized Canon.

2. As I said above the cut, if you personally have a story involving an offsite interaction with the site’s members and would like to share it with the public, I’d love to talk to you. This could be anywhere from how you married (or got into a long-term relationship with, or had a notable experience with) someone you met at a meetup, to a time when a site member or members helped you out in some way, by sending you money, or officiating your wedding, or showing you around a new city, etc. Also, if you know of good stories like this but they happened to someone else and not you, I’d love to hear about who I should get in touch with, either in this thread or by MeMail, if that seems more appropriate. There are a few notable events I know of just from reading the site and from infopages like this one, the participants of which I’ll be getting in touch with, but feel free to assume I’m forgetting everything. Please don’t be shy—even relatively minor anecdotes could be good material for the essay. I'm also happy to accommodate any degree of anonymity you may wish.

By the way, I know 99% of you won’t recognize my username, so I understand I could come off like an outside interloper writing about foreign fauna; I just want to say this is far from the case; I read MetaFilter every day, I just don’t post a lot. Also, rest assured you won’t be contributing to anything negative vis-a-vis the site; the essay is going to be very positive.

Thanks very much for any help you can offer.

Also, I might link to this thread in my essay; just a heads-up.
posted by skwt to MetaFilter-Related at 2:52 PM (132 comments total) 22 users marked this as a favorite

There was an askme a while back where the person had been dumped and asked what things he should do that evening, or where he could get a drink, and I think some members went and drank with him.
posted by misspony at 3:03 PM on June 23, 2014 [4 favorites]


I'm the cancer-code girl from your 1.2.c. I'd be more than happy to chat about the astounding cleverness of folks on the Green! I'll Memail you my personal email address if you want to get in touch.
posted by JannaK at 3:30 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


One part of the so-called 'Russian Incident' that isn't as widely known is that fake did eventually make it to Los Angeles that day (the day he asked the question he was en route here by car from Montana I think?) and actually showed up at a MeFi meetup that night in Marina del Rey where several people bought him several drinks.
posted by carsonb at 3:32 PM on June 23, 2014 [6 favorites]


About a week ago, I was standing in my pig pen, looking at my heavily pregnant pig, and FB chatting about all matters porcine with a Mefite who lives across the country from me, and whom I've never met. MetaFilter --> FB --> mutual piglet squee!

Last summer, a FB friend put out a call for help. Her friend, francinefuqua, was trying to track down the descendants of several WWI soldiers who had left their names on the wall of her great-grandparents' barn in France. I contacted francinefuqua and told her that I would be happy to post her query in Ask MetaFilter. I did. Because I knew that the smart, tenacious, and resourceful folks on the Green would help. And wow, did they; thanks to their assistance, francinefuqua was able to get in touch with the descendants of all but one soldier. Her words: "I am so impressed by the knowledge and dedication of all of you, at MetaFilter. I tried for two years to locate my 3 missing GI's, to no avail. A few weeks after I asked for your help... Success." *Applause.*
posted by MonkeyToes at 3:34 PM on June 23, 2014 [10 favorites]


When I lost my job last July another member (who shall remain nameless) took time out of his day for more than one day to help me buff up my resume and I credit my getting a kickass job pretty much entirely to him BUT AT THE SAME TIME without my knowing it while he was helping me with the resume he sent me & my wife a giftcard to our local grocery store and fed us for a month like wtf
posted by shakespeherian at 3:49 PM on June 23, 2014 [40 favorites]


The Cat lost at Devil's Tower AskMe and MeTa were pretty neat, I thought.
posted by MoonOrb at 3:51 PM on June 23, 2014 [14 favorites]


Thanks everyone so far.

misspony (or anyone else) -- got a link for that one?

JannaK -- awesome I will be in touch

carsonb -- that is a great detail, thank you

MonkeyToes -- I read that WWI at the time and had forgotten about it. That's a great one.

shakespeherian -- that is an excellent and amazing example of exactly what I'm looking for, I will be in touch
posted by skwt at 3:54 PM on June 23, 2014


Oh! I know one! The mefite who got locked in a room, and the community helped them figure out how to escape. I can't even remember when, but I'll see if I can find it for you. That is, unless someone else finds it first.
posted by annsunny at 3:57 PM on June 23, 2014 [11 favorites]


Oh yeah that was amazing. I have no idea when that was though or who it involved. Any link help would be very appreciated
posted by skwt at 4:01 PM on June 23, 2014


When dances_with_sneetches was stuck in an elevator and could only get to a comment in the blue to shout for help!
posted by rtha at 4:02 PM on June 23, 2014 [25 favorites]


When I broke an arm and a leg, the MeFi community really came together to help my recovery. There's more in the archives, or you can just email me and I'll answer questions.
posted by klangklangston at 4:02 PM on June 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


rtha -- that is amazing I totally missed that one. Thank you

klang -- I remember that, I commented in one of those threads actually, I said I thought you were a really good writer. I'll be in touch
posted by skwt at 4:08 PM on June 23, 2014


Found it.
posted by annsunny at 4:09 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


1.2 ... This question, and flug's answers starting here.
posted by nangar at 4:09 PM on June 23, 2014


We threw a block party. Does that count?
posted by eamondaly at 4:24 PM on June 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


I'm going out for a bit but this is all great please keep it coming!
posted by skwt at 4:25 PM on June 23, 2014


Does anyone remember the taters thread?

Also Jessamyn's sexy sex talk answer.
posted by annsunny at 4:26 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


The recent "can you identify the album cover from this tiny slice of a cropped image" was kind of insanely great when it was answered correctly in 15min.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 4:30 PM on June 23, 2014 [6 favorites]


Miko's breakup advice, of course.
posted by amaire at 4:37 PM on June 23, 2014 [3 favorites]


Also Jessamyn's sexy sex talk answer.

That was lemuria.
posted by cashman at 4:38 PM on June 23, 2014 [9 favorites]


herrdoktor's Vegas soap comment.

One note of caution: I trust you're getting the OK from the involved people to discuss what, in some cases, are intensely personal stories? There was a reference to contacting people in the post, but just wanted to double check.
posted by arcticseal at 4:38 PM on June 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


It occurs to me, zipping though the posts for past episodes of the Podcast would be another way to catch up on some high points, eg fun AskMes or that kind of thing.
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 4:39 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


There was an Ask where someone misplaced their glasses in the bedroom and had such poor vision the poster couldn't find them. Someone offered the brilliant solution to stand in the middle of the room and snap consecutive pics, thus allowing the poster to enlarge and zoom the image to a size that was clear enough to see.
posted by mightshould at 4:40 PM on June 23, 2014 [11 favorites]


I don't have the link handy, but I'm sure someone will find it in an instant -- about the person who was looking for his Jewish grandfather's old address in Europe, and the request quickly found it's way to someone who worked at the Jewish archives? Matt used to use that example in one of the earlier Metafilter videos.
posted by ceribus peribus at 4:42 PM on June 23, 2014


D'oh! There it is, right in the post.
posted by ceribus peribus at 4:44 PM on June 23, 2014


If you're having trouble seeing the words in the post, stand in the middle of the room and take consecutive screenshots.
posted by cashman at 4:46 PM on June 23, 2014 [8 favorites]


There was an askme a while back where the person had been dumped and asked what things he should do that evening, or where he could get a drink, and I think some members went and drank with him.
posted by misspony at 6:03 PM on June 23

HEY CHAMP I'M HERE WEARING AN ORANGE HAWAIIAN SHIRT COME SAY HELLO I WILL BUY YOU A DRINK
posted by Greg Nog at 8:14 PM on May 27, 2012
posted by Iris Gambol at 4:50 PM on June 23, 2014 [9 favorites]


help
posted by Rock Steady at 4:54 PM on June 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


Also Jessamyn's sexy sex talk answer.

I love how you thought that might be me.
posted by jessamyn (retired) at 5:19 PM on June 23, 2014 [19 favorites]


It helped me find my current apartment.
It helped my find a previous job.
It's gotten cookies and flowers delivered at work.

and of course, it provided all the guests at my wedding.
posted by jonmc at 5:48 PM on June 23, 2014


I don't know why I thought that. Maybe it was a comment you made sometime.
posted by annsunny at 5:49 PM on June 23, 2014


There was a recent askme from a couple who were getting married at city hall (or equivalent) in NYC and wanted to know if they needed to bring (a) witness(es) and how it all worked and they were nervous and shy about just asking a random person there to be their witness. Many mefites offered not just first-person knowledge but to come be witnesses. For the life of me I can't find it.
posted by rtha at 5:51 PM on June 23, 2014




I was deathly afraid of a surgery and made both an askme and a meta about it. I thought there was a decent chance I wouldn't make it out alive because I was (and am) deathly afraid of anesthesia. I did think if I died it would be pretty hard for people to one up that flame out! These made me feel great about the $5 sign up fee.

I've gotten a few me mails over my surgery over the years. My recovery photo is my profile photo.

I also met Delmoi just because I was wearing a metafilter shirt.

Ask me anything.
posted by cjorgensen at 5:56 PM on June 23, 2014


I've posted this a few times, but the Lost Poem post always blows my mind.
posted by lalex at 6:07 PM on June 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


1.1b here. Feel free to email me any questions not answered on the podcast or I can MeMail you my phone number and we can chat if you'd like. The colorful accent is free!
posted by ColdChef at 6:12 PM on June 23, 2014


Also: I'm PRETTY MUCH responsible for two MeFites getting hitched. Which kind of makes me an extra parent to their kids. I'm just sayin.

On a much, much sadder note, several MeFites and I helped out when a member unexpectedly died and his mother needed assistance planning his funeral services.
posted by ColdChef at 6:16 PM on June 23, 2014 [5 favorites]


You might find the "metafilterhistory" tag, applied selectively during the backtagging operation, leads you to some stuff you're interested in.
posted by Rumple at 6:40 PM on June 23, 2014




Also, I met MonkeyToes from the site and have been enjoying the pork she raises to this very day. And we occasionally trade pickles and other canned goods.
posted by Toekneesan at 6:50 PM on June 23, 2014


I'm quite fond of the zoomorphic/Optimus Chyme pairing, and zoomorphic herself posted a comment about how mefi informed pretty much every part of her life in NYC (INCLUDING ME, ME, I RULE, HELLO)
posted by Greg Nog at 6:51 PM on June 23, 2014


Also: I'm PRETTY MUCH responsible for two MeFites getting hitched.

It's true, it's true! And the magic must pay forward, because it was stynxno and I that introduced Greg Nog and likeatoaster (they probably would have met without our personal help but I STILL TAKE ALL THE MATCHMAKING CREDIT).
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 6:53 PM on June 23, 2014 [5 favorites]


And Toekneesan and family were kind enough to offer accommodations when my husband and I came to town for a conference, even though they had never met us. Good folks!
posted by MonkeyToes at 6:57 PM on June 23, 2014


And GregNog performed griphus & Blisterlips' wedding!
posted by jessamyn (retired) at 7:02 PM on June 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


And griphus fed me for a month BUT THEN I DID NOTHING FOR ANYONE HAHAHAHAHAHAHA
posted by shakespeherian at 7:04 PM on June 23, 2014 [13 favorites]


when i met shakespeherian in chicago he stomped on my foot and told me "welcome to the OC"
posted by Greg Nog at 7:16 PM on June 23, 2014 [4 favorites]


I'll chat with you about my cat at Devils Tower.
posted by k8t at 7:16 PM on June 23, 2014 [3 favorites]


I'll chat with you about my cat at Devils Tower.

That's a long drive to talk about a cat.
posted by Dip Flash at 7:21 PM on June 23, 2014 [13 favorites]


"How it got into Devil's Tower we'll never kn^H^H"

Oh wait, it's right here.
posted by jessamyn (retired) at 7:24 PM on June 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


I used to be internet fraud detective squad station number 9, if you're looking for me :)

I also started a weekly meetup in Brooklyn which is super cool and I moderate a NYC mefites listserv (started by griphus IIRC)

Me and grobstein (who I met via metafilter of course) had the interstate move from hell (movers didn't show up and didn't tell us they weren't going to show up! our furniture was literally imprisoned by the storage company so we had nowhere to sleep but the floor!) but were helped at nearly every juncture by wonderful mefites who helped us move, helped us to IKEA, and generally were kind and welcoming. Mefites are pretty much the best.

Also lately I've been trying to make non-metafilter friends for various reasons and it's SO HARD! I don't recommend it to ANYONE!
posted by the young rope-rider at 7:30 PM on June 23, 2014 [11 favorites]


And, I'll be tactful about the overlap between my love life and the site, but if my memoirs are of any interest at all it will be because of Metafilter.
posted by the young rope-rider at 7:32 PM on June 23, 2014 [4 favorites]


A while ago Mr. Pterodactyl and I were at a meetup where we met a bunch of people including a MeFite I'll call Minneapolis. As we were leaving I mentioned to Mr. Pterodactyl that it's a shame Bureaucracy, a really good friend of ours who is a MeFite (also not a real name), hadn't been there because I think they would have liked each other.

A few months went by and we started having more DC meetups and we saw Minneapolis fairly frequently and she became a fairly good friend and sometimes would hang out at our house for board games or whatever and it was cool because she was a nice person and I ended up inviting her to my birthday party. The rest of this story I have to take on faith because I don't remember it but apparently during this time I got hugely, hugely drunk and Minneapolis vouchsafed to me that she had a crush on Bureaucracy and I went out for a cigarette and was like "Bureaucracy, come with me" and poor Minneapolis saw this and started flipping out and poor Mr. Pterodactyl had to comfort her because obviously as soon as we got outside I was like "Bureaucracy, just FYI Minneapolis has a crush on you" and now they are dating and it's awesome because they are both very nice people who I like a lot but also value their privacy which is why I have not used real names.

Also to be perfectly honest when I say "my birthday party" I mean that since I never got a bachelor party (although I had a lovely bachelorette party) my amazing husband threw me one for my thirtieth birthday so during the day we played paintball and then came home and he made fajitas and I made a cake shaped like a dinosaur and then we went out so all of this bit where I was drunk and telling people about crushes was at a strip club so although I think that Minneapolis and Bureaucracy are absolutely lovely together they can never, ever tell their families the real story of how they hooked up because it boils down to "we met through the internet and then our drunk friend dragged us to a strip club and said 'she's got a crush on you' all high school style but it's cool because she was too drunk to remember".

I'm not sure if this is the kind of story for which you're looking?
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 7:33 PM on June 23, 2014 [26 favorites]


And griphus fed me for a month BUT THEN I DID NOTHING FOR ANYONE HAHAHAHAHAHAHA

You sent me the nicest metafilter mail like 5 years ago! I still remember where I was when I read it because it just made my whole day.
posted by the young rope-rider at 7:33 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


Spilling over into IRL happens with the secret Quonsar and charity drive, too.
posted by annsunny at 7:41 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


dear rope-rider, do you like me

□ yes
□ no
posted by shakespeherian at 7:43 PM on June 23, 2014 [4 favorites]


I'm also happy to accommodate any degree of anonymity you may wish.

I told that story because I find it amusing but yes, a high degree of anonymity would be appreciated both because it's a story about my friends and because I don't come off in the best light.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 7:45 PM on June 23, 2014


well, who among us hasn't gotten drunk at a strip club?
posted by desjardins at 7:52 PM on June 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


arcticseal: "herrdoktor's Vegas soap comment.

I took herrdoktor's soap advice and I now have a bathroom full of something called "Aromatic Wood."
posted by Dr. Zira at 7:54 PM on June 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


Oh, uh, actually I meant because I told someone's secret, but, yeah, the strip club thing too.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 7:55 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


I asked a question because I was looking for an app that did certain things, and it didn't exist, so chairface wrote an app for me.

Also, though I wish it didn't have to exist, I'll admit to a bias for the Sandy thread.
posted by booksherpa at 8:10 PM on June 23, 2014 [3 favorites]


Oh boy, I witnessed that wedding and it was great! Lots of other Mefites offered but the fact that I work across the street was probably pretty compelling. (I actually used to work in the building itself. People would always ask me and my work BFF if we were getting married when we'd walk back in from lunch, but I never went in the marriage bureau before the question came up on AskMe.) Feel free to shoot me a memail if you want. I obviously won't provide any identifying details about the anon newlyweds, but I am happy to give my perspective. (Spoiler alert: Mefites are awesome and now they are married! Hooray!)

Also, I have probably said this numerous times before, but Mefi helped me find a grad program and an apartment, both of which are more or less functional. Good times.
posted by mlle valentine at 8:25 PM on June 23, 2014 [5 favorites]


I knew it was you, with witnessing that wedding! And I even looked through your ask comments to see if I could find the thread, but I must not have scrolled back far enough.
posted by rtha at 8:36 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


Pastabagel on boring men.
posted by Melismata at 8:40 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


The You were doing it wrong AskMe is pretty great.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 8:42 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


This was an awesome comment that I've remembered for years!

Here's what you do:

1) Buy a taco
2) Eat the taco
3) Buy another taco
4) Eat the taco
5) Buy a Dr. Pepper
6) Buy Rose's Lime Juice
7) Put a splash of Rose's Lime Juice in a glass with two ice cubes
8) Pour the Dr. Pepper into the glass
9) Drink the beverage
10) Love how awesome the drink is
11) Dump your boyfriend

Now, 11 is the only necessary step. But after having two tacos and a Dr. Pepper with a splash of lime syrup, you'll realize how awesome life is and wonder why you're spending time with a fuckpuddle "boyfriend", and ruminating over some petty crap like this.

All of that time and energy could be spent on other things. Like mixing Ginger Ale, Grenadine, Sweetened Lime Juice, and Rainbow Sherbet in a blender, and drinking that for desert.

Private message me if you have important matters to discuss, like if there is anything that mixes well with grape juice (there totally is).
posted by Bathtub Bobsled at 3:45 PM on December 15,
posted by misspony at 11:25 PM on June 23, 2014 [14 favorites]


Really really classic comments

My go to for this is comment fables. There are some excellent pieces of writing that are, IMO, part of the MeFi canon like The Wheel and The End of AskMe.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 12:35 AM on June 24, 2014 [4 favorites]


Everyone always recommends checking out Deezil's profile when they have a virus, so I figured "he's knowledgeable" and asked him what I thought was an innocent question about something weird my computer was doing - and he wrote back within five minutes to warn me that "uh, your computer is literally about to die any minute now, you need to do something" and that lead to him basically servicing my computer over the phone at 8 pm on a Saturday with me in Brooklyn and him in Kentucky. I gave him a shout-out here out of gratitude, and I think he mentioned that he got 150 other "I have a computer question too" emails as a result and so I do feel slightly guilty....
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 4:33 AM on June 24, 2014 [2 favorites]


The You were doing it wrong AskMe is pretty great.

As is this similar AskMe from last year.
posted by gauche at 6:19 AM on June 24, 2014


And GregNog performed griphus & Blisterlips' wedding!

Oh man, MeFi/AskMe is responsible for like a good half of our wedding and a big reason it was actually an affordable event: the (surprisingly inexpensive) venue was suggested by several MeFites, my bespoke suit was via an itinerant Hong Kong tailor I got from an AskMe question, we had a Polaroid camera station instead of an expensive photo booth, etc.

And griphus fed me for a month BUT THEN I DID NOTHING FOR ANYONE HAHAHAHAHAHAHA

ACTUALLY, shakes and his wife sent us some really really lovely thank-you notes that are still up on the fridge and two huge volumes of Ernie Bushmiller's Nancy which I burned through in like two weeks.
posted by griphus at 6:38 AM on June 24, 2014 [2 favorites]


Oh and my wife and I are in the process of buying a co-op in Brooklyn and mlle valentine (who will soon hopefully be our neighbor) has been super helpful.
posted by griphus at 6:40 AM on June 24, 2014 [3 favorites]


Every mefite I've come in contact with off the site has been a goddamn delight, most notably:

-I became good friends with a coworker at a former job after she saw me slacking off and reading the blue and revealed that she was also a mefite, but slacked off at work by reading the green.
-I sent a message to a user about how his username cracked me up every time I saw it, he introduced himself to me at a party in my own house (friend of a friend, not enormous creeper) a few weeks later.
-Realizing that a cool colleague of mine was a mefite when she tweeted about liking one of my grumpier comments.

Mefites: they're everywhere!
posted by troika at 7:14 AM on June 24, 2014 [1 favorite]


It's always challenging for me to come up with MeFite stories because a lot of the people who I happened to meet via MeFi are now just people I hang out with in real life. So, from the last 24 hours... A MeFite came to my house where I was grappling with a car (not mine) with a dead battery and all full of anxiety about getting made fun of by the AAA guys (who had been out twice before - yes this was a situation I was Not Handling) and was wondering if he could help me jump start it since I was not having any luck on my own and I wasn't sure why. He drove over after his daughter had gone to bed around 9 pm (he lives two towns over) and brought his trickle charger and an extension cord and hooked the whole thing up, calmed my fears about the weird nail that the AAA guys had put next to the battery last time and hung out in the driveway telling stories about his new job and how the town 4th of July Parade has a tank in it and oh his mom wanted to mention that I was invited to watch the parade with them when I was in town. I gave him a six-pack of beer and he gave me the bag I'd left at his place last time we all hung out (Superbowl playoffs?) and we made nebulous plans to get together and play board games (hopefully with other local MeFites) later this summer sometime.

This is the comment I come back to time and time again and actually had the occasion to bring it up with the MeFite who wrote it who was now attending the wedding of the MeFites (who met on MetaChat) who are (I think) mentioned in it. It always makes me all misty-eyed.
Two Mefites danced at my wedding, mingled cheerfully with the crowd even though the only person there they'd ever met was busy getting married, and I even spied them after the party, all dolled up in their wedding finery, helping to fold the grange hall's chairs and hoist the tables back into storage. And they wrote us a wedding poem!

I have made some good friends in this place.
posted by jessamyn (retired) at 7:34 AM on June 24, 2014 [1 favorite]


I know I've mentioned it before, but the earthquake/tsunami/Fukushima thread was immensely helpful to me and a lot of other mefites here in Japan. Being able, in thread, to not only get news, as well as false reports debunked quickly, but to hear from other mefites in Japan to know that they were safe (as well as the incredibly kind words written to us by mefites from around the world) is something I'll never forget. On a personal level, it helped me get through the hours when I was still at my school, before I heard from my wife, and then during the hours waiting for her to finally make it home the next day.
posted by Ghidorah at 7:49 AM on June 24, 2014 [4 favorites]


Metafilter is almost directly responsible for me having a stable writing carrer. But in the "writing comments every day" sense and in the "getting me paying jobs" sense.

I have made so many friends, around the world, from Metafilter and I've met a lot of them - just this weekend I had a riotous going away party for two other Mefites and I'm having lunch today with another one. I never would've met these people except through Metafilter.

For lack of a better word, Metafilter is my social circle, or at least a huge chunk of it. I'm scheduling a trip to Chicago soon on the entire pretense of meeting a members' new baby. I have been in conversation with people under the same MeMail headline for FOUR YEARS.

Also I once gave away a juicer AND a dinosaur poster and that's pretty cool.
posted by The Whelk at 7:57 AM on June 24, 2014 [2 favorites]


( also the ethos Ask Metafilter has slowly crept into my brain so whenever I have a question I just imagine how the site would react- honestly the heavy moderation and general attitude has made me a more empathic, careful person.)
posted by The Whelk at 7:59 AM on June 24, 2014 [3 favorites]


I'm scheduling a trip to Chicago soon on the entire pretense of meeting a members' new baby.

Whaaaaaaat. I assume there will be an IRL. I will take the train down, and I'll drag divined by radio with me (though I am sure there will be no dragging necessary).
posted by desjardins at 8:04 AM on June 24, 2014


I traveled from Yellowknife to the 10th anniversary meetup in Toronto where I met a bunch of cool mefites including you.
posted by ODiV at 8:08 AM on June 24, 2014 [2 favorites]


Here's a MetaTalk thread with more highlights (and lowlights) from MetaFilter, as of February 2008, though it's not as much IRL as you're looking for.
posted by filthy light thief at 8:27 AM on June 24, 2014


I'm scheduling a trip to Chicago soon on the entire pretense of meeting a members' new baby.

WHO
posted by shakespeherian at 8:31 AM on June 24, 2014


And what other community weblog (or any other website, for that matter) features a moderator who likes the members so much as to literally jet around the US for a month to visit members he hasn't met before.
posted by filthy light thief at 8:35 AM on June 24, 2014 [4 favorites]


Someone with a much cuter baby shakes
posted by The Whelk at 8:36 AM on June 24, 2014 [2 favorites]


FISTICUFFS
posted by shakespeherian at 8:39 AM on June 24, 2014


Guys, this is all great, thanks so much. I'll be getting in touch with people as I write. And to answer someone's question, yes, I'll definitely clear any highly personal stuff with people.
posted by skwt at 8:40 AM on June 24, 2014


One part of the so-called 'Russian Incident' that isn't as widely known is that fake did eventually make it to Los Angeles that day (the day he asked the question he was en route here by car from Montana I think?) and actually showed up at a MeFi meetup that night in Marina del Rey where several people bought him several drinks.

The whole trip ended up being over two days, I think.

The destination was an Extended Stay in Glendale, CA. I parked the car, had a swig of Jameson and hauled my hatchback full of stuff inside. Just as I started to relax, Scody called me up and said "Hey neighbor! Can I take you out for drinks?"

I had to say yes. She picked me up and we drove to the place. There was much food and drinking, and I remember being buzzed and slouched in a chair, surrounded by LA MeFites asking for more details (which they got. ;))

Go ahead and get in touch with me. I have pretty complete documentation of everything.
posted by fake at 8:41 AM on June 24, 2014 [2 favorites]


FISTICUFFS

For sale: baby shakes, never fought
posted by Greg Nog at 8:43 AM on June 24, 2014 [8 favorites]


I moved from Memphis to Boston and posted an ask.me about details. DiscourseMarker actually lives in both Memphis and Boston and offered to meet up with me on campus and answer all my questions. She's the best.
posted by woodvine at 8:44 AM on June 24, 2014


Many MeFites never make it to the meet-ups but participate in two recurring events that straddle the border between e-life and real life and play a role in community culture: the Quonsmas gift exchange and the mix-tape trades.

For my part, I once recognized one of the more prominent MeFites getting on a plane--she had posted a picture of herself recently--but I had just realized that I'd lost my iPad and was frantically stirring my briefcase contents trying to find it. I decided to say hello after the flight, but I lost sight of her. So I sent her a "was that you?" MeMail and discovered that we're in allied professions. It was nice.
posted by carmicha at 8:48 AM on June 24, 2014


Oh! The last 3 big trips I took I made a point of floating the idea of meetups in each of those cities. Which lead to the following incidents:

1. Being in New Orleans for Mardi Gras in 2009 - which was also my birthday - and ColdChef's family inviting me to join them on RadioAmy's front lawn to watch the Truck Parade (a more free-form parade than the big Krewe stuff). RadioAmy had coincidentally just had another birthday party at her place the night before and had leftovers of everything, INCLUDING birthday cake, so I even had cake on my birthday.

2. Meeting a whole flock of London MeFites for fancy-ass cocktails and then following them across Islington to a place for Turkish Food. I remember essexjan and cilitbang helping me pick things to order, and then later on running order squabble fest helped me figure out why the Tube wasn't accepting my Oyster card. They were all also very patient when they saw I'd lagged behind because I was doing the whole geek-tourist thing of "OH MY GOD IT'S A HOTBLACK DESIATO SIGN I MUST TAKE A PICTURE OF THIS RANDOM STOREFRONT".

3. Awesome codcakes in a hole-in-the-wall place in Rome I would never have known about otherwise, culminating in a free ride back to my hotel courtesy of aqsakal and his missus (who very patiently endured my trying to thank her in my phrasebook Italian).
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 8:49 AM on June 24, 2014


And griphus fed me for a month BUT THEN I DID NOTHING FOR ANYONE HAHAHAHAHAHAHA

You've been supplying us with really great Black IPAs for, like, months

And GregNog performed griphus & Blisterlips' wedding!
posted by jessamyn (retired) at 9:02 PM on June 23


Jessamyn is going to perform ours!

Greg told me to mention here that also he is v handsome
posted by likeatoaster at 9:00 AM on June 24, 2014 [5 favorites]


i heard a rumor that he's simply the tastiest
posted by Greg Nog at 9:01 AM on June 24, 2014


He has to button up his shirt or all the other men will feel shame and sorrow
posted by The Whelk at 9:03 AM on June 24, 2014


I once saw Greg eat like three regular humans' worth of brunch in one sitting
posted by shakespeherian at 9:15 AM on June 24, 2014 [1 favorite]


A Greg ate my baby
posted by the young rope-rider at 9:30 AM on June 24, 2014


wait, Greg Nog and likeatoaster are getting married? how did I miss this? jesus, how drunk was I? congratulations, you crazy kids.
posted by desjardins at 9:40 AM on June 24, 2014 [2 favorites]


Jessamyn is going to perform ours!

Wait jessamyn now you have to get married so I can perform your wedding.

IT'S ONLY FAIR.
posted by griphus at 9:42 AM on June 24, 2014


No, seriously, one time Greg Nog dressed up as a lion in order to photograph himself menacing a photo of my baby
posted by the young rope-rider at 9:58 AM on June 24, 2014 [2 favorites]


My go to for this is comment fables.

why isn't tim's taters LIE on that page

it is because it was a LIE and not a fable
posted by elizardbits at 10:11 AM on June 24, 2014


and greg's artisanal coke lie which i believed for almost 2 whole minutes im still mad
posted by elizardbits at 10:13 AM on June 24, 2014 [5 favorites]


This one time jessamyn was stranded at the airport and we're only 10 minutes from there, so we went and picked her up and brought her back to our place and it was the evening of the Academy awards and our house makes a big deal of this and so she hung out and watched the Oscars with our fashion-obsessed friends and we had to explain Metafilter to all of them and she slept on our couch and she really liked our awesome cat Yorvit and he got a shout out on the next podcast and now we tell him that he's internet famous. The end.


She is one of three mods who have stayed on our couch, fyi. We're trying to collect them all.
posted by gingerbeer at 10:17 AM on June 24, 2014 [7 favorites]


I came out of my meet-internet-people-shell a while ago because of this site's members, and have made some great, great friends. I don't have much time, and, you know, what happens in MeFightClub stays in MeFightClub, but I will say that my pals in MFC are aces, all around.

However, I did post a trip report when I made my my first trip out to Los Angeles, and have had the good fortune of making some great friends, but who are spectacular people. I've got out to LA a handful more times specifically looking forward to visiting them.

Gotta split for a meeting, so I'll keep this short. Meeting MeFites IRL, through MeFi proper or through MeFightClub, has been some of the finest times of my life. Period. Except for the time when we collapsed a some boat dock. Or when I burnt off the hair of my left arm. No. wait. Those were awesome times, too.
posted by herrdoktor at 10:20 AM on June 24, 2014


She is one of three mods who have stayed on our couch, fyi. We're trying to collect them all.

I would absolutely love it if there were another mod trip around the country (or the world). I met cortex years ago and he was very personable and patient even though I'm sure he was completely exhausted. Then he played Rainbow Connection on a ukulele. I would like something similar to happen again.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 10:23 AM on June 24, 2014 [3 favorites]


Hi! I am one of the organizers of secret quonsar, which generally goes swimmingly. There are few purposeful jerks (of the "Yeah, no present for you. Mwahahahahahaha!" variety), and a legion of awesome volunteers who want to make to sure everyone gets a gift, and the folks who help make it go are really great. And the participants are awesome when we stumble and when we can make the process better.

Some cool, public quonsar-related events that leap to mind:

We have a lot of couples/roommates/spouses on MeFi who both participate in sq. Our quickest draw-to-delivery sq is 10 minutes; one MeFite drew his wife's name and already had an appropriate sq gift for her ... so voila! It was delightful and kicked the season off wonderfully.

We also have had folks ask us if they can swap out their drawn roommate/spouse/partner/*friend because they like the side benefit of getting to know another mefite through this process - people generally read through someone's history on the site: posts, asks, metas, comments, favorites, etc, and any associated public social media/websites/public work and really get to know people individually. Some people have found themselves liking/undersanding/connecting with someone whom they were in awe of, or with whom they had associated a post/comment/philosophy/style they hadn't care for, or whom they had never noticed/talked to before. And sometimes the gifts are incredible - homemade banjos, copies of a book or cd the author was trying to locate in a long-ago askme or mentioned in an aside in MeFi, tasty local fare, the perfect addition to a collection or interest the sender has.

There's almost always a bonus gift (or three), too, each year. Someone will mail us, having noticed a comment that someone missed the signups or even mentioning that they miss something specific not available to them now in MeFi, and want to send the commenter something. We're always glad to see if we can make that work, and it often does. Whether it's a jar of vegemite or apple butter or a CD, it's a delight for the recipient and makes the community aspect of MeFi seem more tangible.
posted by julen at 11:36 AM on June 24, 2014 [5 favorites]


I also started a weekly meetup in Brooklyn which is super cool and I moderate a NYC mefites listserv (started by griphus IIRC)

I met tyrr at this very meetup! Metafilter changed my life!
posted by grobstein at 11:37 AM on June 24, 2014 [1 favorite]


There are few purposeful jerks (of the "Yeah, no present for you. Mwahahahahahaha!" variety)

Sounds like MetaFilter needs a Secret Krampus.
posted by griphus at 11:44 AM on June 24, 2014 [2 favorites]


I like to think I can Krampus it up with the best of folks, although I think of myself as more of a nisse. Those little suckers can get mean!

We don't permaban many people from s.q., but supreme jerkiness will get you a polite but firm buh-bye.
posted by julen at 11:50 AM on June 24, 2014 [1 favorite]


julen, you just reminded me that I've never had to ask someone to stop coming to meetups or to leave. I've only once had to talk to someone about their behavior on the listserv, and that was more a friendly misunderstanding than anything else. It's pretty incredible given the number of people who are involved in these activities.
posted by the young rope-rider at 11:53 AM on June 24, 2014


Great job, everyone!
posted by gman at 12:19 PM on June 24, 2014 [3 favorites]


unixrat discovered photoshopping in a New York Times piece. His work was eventually acknowledged by The Times.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 12:21 PM on June 24, 2014 [2 favorites]


About a week ago, I was standing in my pig pen, looking at my heavily pregnant pig, and FB chatting about all matters porcine with a Mefite who lives across the country from me, and whom I've never met. MetaFilter --> FB --> mutual piglet squee!

After reading this sentence, I skipped to the end to see what clever username would be there. I expected to find 'Ms. Piggy', or 'Pork'n'Beans' or something, and was puzzled to see 'MonkeyToes' instead. So I had to go back and re-read the sentence to finally understand that she was talking about real pigs.
posted by QuakerMel at 12:25 PM on June 24, 2014 [1 favorite]


By the way, you can talk to me about my getting stuck in an elevator. I don't know why it was so memorable.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 12:48 PM on June 24, 2014 [3 favorites]


That was you! That was so cool.
posted by the young rope-rider at 12:58 PM on June 24, 2014


Oh, and you might want to ask gman about this. He's too modest to bring it up himself, bless his heart.

Great job, everyone!
posted by gman at 3:19 PM on June 24 [1 favorite +] [!]

You too! :D
posted by the young rope-rider at 1:02 PM on June 24, 2014 [3 favorites]


Oh, shoot, I meant to link to the thank you from loquacious. Arrgh! Hopefully you get the gist of things anyway, OP.
posted by the young rope-rider at 1:06 PM on June 24, 2014


For me, it's this and this.
posted by pjern at 3:32 PM on June 24, 2014 [1 favorite]


Its not a big dramatic thing but perhaps that's what makes this community so special... I was late to the threads on the metafilter moderator shrunkage for reasons and normally would have been far more active in those discussions so I just made a throwaway comment about having just been crudely dumped as my excuse for being late to the great unfundraising... AND a whole bunch of people, some of whose names I'd never seen before, memailed me hugs and best wishes, right there in teh middle of all that communal wagon circling to save teh site.

That touched me deeply. It really is a community that cares, and takes the time out to do it.

Thank you all.
posted by infini at 4:43 PM on June 24, 2014


Have we mentioned blue_beetles famous "You are the product" viral memefication yet ?
posted by infini at 4:48 PM on June 24, 2014 [2 favorites]


I am reminded of that time when mediocre concussed themselves badly at Occupy Portland, and posted to AskMe for help with their auditory hallucinations. It was obvious from the post that they were in trouble, and confused and somewhat incapacitated. In the AskMe post, people worked out mediocre's IRL identity, and ottereroticist swept in, picked them up and took them to the ER.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 4:53 PM on June 24, 2014 [7 favorites]


At the first (and so far only) Meetup I went to I met tingting and realized that she and I had been friends in 2nd grade! But then I moved and never saw her again. But since the meetup we hang out when we have time and I try to send freelance graphics work her way.

At that meetup I also met Pater Alethias and found out that he was a highschool friend of my husband's. We hung out with his lovely family a few times, then they moved, but we talk on Facebook and I enjoy the adventures of his many adorable children.
posted by emjaybee at 5:29 PM on June 24, 2014


I met middleclasstool IRL. His wife is lovely. He is horrible.
posted by desjardins at 5:30 PM on June 24, 2014 [2 favorites]


People are getting married, helping each other out, socializing with each other, having fun and building life-long friendships. Now I feel like I'm doing Metafilter all wrong. (Though there isn't much of a critical mass of Mefites here in flyover country.)
posted by double block and bleed at 6:28 PM on June 24, 2014


this thread: Wow, I Wish I Lived In New York City

[lives in New York City]

Why Did I Wish This Upon Myself
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 7:28 PM on June 24, 2014 [2 favorites]


You are so NOT doing MeFi all wrong. MeFi isn't a single-passage Maze and there's no one way to MeFi. Folks should interact as much as they feel comfortable with the site and the community, showing respect for both. I live in an area reasonably populated by MeFites, and (used to live in a metropolitan area with bunches of them) have never been to a meetup. Heck, I'm pretty sure I've stood in line at the library or IGA or post office behind other mefites, and nothing happened, other a polite "pardon me" and "let me get this bag out of your way" or "they are never going to stop "beautifying this road", are they?"

All the MeFites I happen to know, I know from other arenas. This doesn't make me any less of a MeFite than than lurking and not wanting to comment between (approximately) 2001 and 2004 did. There was a while there where people were throwing shade at people who only participated in AskMe or never came to MeTa, and that was b.s., too.

There are a ga-dozen ways to do Metafilter right and far fewer to do it wrong. And most of the wrong ways involve actual effort in achieving new heights of jerkitude or egotism or willful bastardry.

Sorry, but this drives me nuts that people can somehow be a true MeFite only if you do certain things. This is not a slam on people who do those things - I'm delighted vicariously for them! But, it is not the only way, and you should not feel bad if you don't or can't or won't do them.
posted by julen at 7:33 PM on June 24, 2014 [5 favorites]


dances_with_sneetches: unixrat discovered photoshopping in a New York Times piece.

As covered in MetaTalk.
posted by filthy light thief at 8:06 PM on June 24, 2014


I have a whole lot of positive experience with meeting mefites online and in person, but I'm unfortunately extremely time limited right now with dealing with housing instability and ongoing unemployment and mental health issues.

To fellow site members, please don't read my silence on this as a lack of gratitude or remembering. My situation is pretty screwed up again right now but I'm working on it.
posted by loquacious at 8:56 PM on June 24, 2014 [3 favorites]


Someone upthread - hi! - posted a great poem a few weeks ago, a poem of their own composing, and I sent them a MeMail asking permission to read it IRL to the elderly people at work. Permission was graciously granted, and I'll be reading it next Monday.

I did meet some RL MeFites recently, but not one of them proposed. Am I doing it wrong?
posted by valetta at 12:54 AM on June 25, 2014 [1 favorite]


Two Mefites I met at a last minute meetup I organised when I was visiting San Francisco were organising their wedding. She first became aware of him on Reddit, but decided he would be worth meeting up with when she found out he was a Mefite as well. So they dated>got engaged>got married AFAIK
posted by asok at 2:38 AM on June 25, 2014 [1 favorite]


Somehow without realizing it much of the trajectory of my life of the past half decade has involved Metafilter heavily in some way:
  • I owe my current job (that I adore) to a MeFite that I met through other MeFites on Twitter. He passed my resume along when their company was hiring a front-end dev and then cheerleaded me at every step of the interview process.
  • Come to think of it, I also owe my last job (and consequent relocation to North Carolina) to a MeFite - we'd been dating long distance for two years, he worked for a digital agency that had no developer at all, and I was looking for a way to to get out of accounting. Win-win-win.
  • When I moved back to the Toronto area at the end of last year, I rented out the basement of a couple of married MeFite friends that I met at a meetup in 2010 until I figured out what my next geographic step would be. (That worked out kind of amazingly well - we joked that we had a mini meetup at dinner every night.)
  • A MeFite is catsitting for me right now while I visit my parents, and when I get back I'll probably go to Karaoke and hang out with the non-MeFite friends he's introduced me to.
  • My MeFite and MeFite-adjacent friends are the main reason I want to move to the Bay Area. We have regular-ish Google Hangouts, including that one time we did a ridiculous drunken readthrough of Much Ado About Nothing.
  • Half of my Facebook and most of my Twitter/Instagram friends are MeFites.
So because of all of that, I make it a point to call a meetup in every city I travel to. Sometimes the timing works out better than others, but I've never had an experience that wasn't just delightful and charming. I feel like I have friends all over the world because of meetups and Twitter. It's kind of fantastic.
posted by Phire at 1:20 PM on June 26, 2014 [15 favorites]


Another amazing AskMe that I half remember was one where someone had a painting that they posted a picture of and they were asking if anyone knew anything about it, and approximately 30 minutes later, the artist's daughter showed up in the thread and said, "Yeah, that's my dad's work".

(apologies if I have some of these details not quite right.)

Does anyone else remember this?
posted by marsha56 at 3:30 PM on June 26, 2014


Does anyone else remember this?

I think you're talking about the Art Seller thread. (Also one of my favorites; what a lovely story.)
posted by lalex at 3:48 PM on June 26, 2014 [3 favorites]


Wow, I got quite a lot of the details wrong, but yeah, that must be it. Thanks lalex.
posted by marsha56 at 3:56 PM on June 26, 2014


I'm 1.1.c, and would be more than happy to discuss it.
posted by mrbill at 12:08 PM on July 3, 2014


Stephen, good talking to you tonight, and I look forward to the end result! Thanks.
posted by mrbill at 6:00 PM on July 8, 2014


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