Are we a bunch of politically correct nerds? March 14, 2007 8:43 PM   Subscribe

DiscussionFilter: Is Metafilter (as a collective) horrendously biased and therefore a crappy measuring stick for 'Real Life'? [MI]
posted by Phire to MetaFilter-Related at 8:43 PM (139 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

Given that the general age group of Metafilter seemed (to me) to be in the mid-20s-and-above area, I as a teenager always figured that reading threads that involve human relations, work issues, psychological issues, etc. would be helpful in terms of being less flummoxed when facing a similar issue in 'The Real World'. After reading this comment though, I'm wondering if the demographics of Metafilter (inclined to be semi-civilized, semi-educated and semi-well-off) skews the nature of the responses enough to render them next to useless?
posted by Phire at 8:44 PM on March 14, 2007


What?
posted by boo_radley at 8:46 PM on March 14, 2007


Are you asking if we're too nice to be helpful?

Wow, nobody's ever asked us that before.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 8:47 PM on March 14, 2007 [2 favorites]


I think "next to useless" may be a bit...dramatic.
posted by desuetude at 8:49 PM on March 14, 2007


I'm a teenager as well, and from what I've seen, the information found on this site is pretty close to what you're likely to encounter in the real world--because the people here are giving advice based on their actual experiences.

That's why I like Metafilter--and especially AskMeFi--so much. It's one of the few places on the web where you can get a real answer about basically anything from a friendly group of people.

*Group hug*
posted by DMan at 8:50 PM on March 14, 2007 [2 favorites]


No no, not ... too nice to be helpful. Well, not intentionally anyway. :P

But I mean, polling a group of Fandom fangirls about gay marriage is going to be drastically different than polling a group of people with conservative points of view, isn't it? that's what I'm thinking of. The metafilter people spend a significant time on the net, are generally well versed and well-off... does that affect their POV too much?
posted by Phire at 8:54 PM on March 14, 2007


The metafilter people spend a significant time on the net, are generally well versed and well-off... does that affect their POV too much?

Yes. You should go back to reading Penthouse Forum.
posted by docpops at 8:58 PM on March 14, 2007


But then I'd just be jealous of all the action I'm not getting. *emo pout*
posted by Phire at 9:03 PM on March 14, 2007


The metafilter people spend a significant time on the net, are generally well versed and well-off... does that affect their POV too much?

Well, of course it affects their point of view, the same way anyone's life affects their point of view. You'll have to decide on your own whether the advice given on this site lines up with how you want to live your life. For me, it generally does, although there are times when I want to scream DAMN YOU CRAZY LIBERAL HIPPIE LOSERS- I WILL HAVE A REAL DIAMOND RING SOMEDAY AND I WON'T LET YOU RUIN IT!
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 9:09 PM on March 14, 2007 [7 favorites]


... does that affect their POV too much?
Whenever you ask a group of people for advice, you need to consider the point of view they are giving advice from. If your view of us is "spend a significant time on the net, are generally well versed and well-off" and this coincides with how you currently live or how you want to live, then the advice will be aproppriate for you. If this is a good summary of the group and you either are or would like to be an ignorant, broke luddite, then the advice you get may well be "next to useless". Only you can decide. Any opinion as to the usefulness or otherwise of advice that comes from that same group of people is terminally skewed.
posted by dg at 9:23 PM on March 14, 2007


Wait, am I being called out or not?
posted by klangklangston at 9:28 PM on March 14, 2007 [2 favorites]


no, you're not! :P I actually thought that comment rather refreshing. Ideals rarely work in real life. Actually - 'grats!
posted by Phire at 9:38 PM on March 14, 2007


Dear Metafilter Forums,

I never thought it would happen to me, but...
posted by Falconetti at 9:45 PM on March 14, 2007


What is this "Real Life" you speak of?
I'm too busy with work, school, business, music, family, singing frighteningly badly, photography, friends and 10 others things to worry about a "real Life", guess I'll have to make do with the one I have, damn.

Seriously, what is your definition of real life?
posted by edgeways at 10:00 PM on March 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


Outside of High School. Unless life is merely a continuation of High School, in which case - for !@$#(&*'s sake!
posted by Phire at 10:04 PM on March 14, 2007


I don't think MetaFilter is a reflection of "real life", but then I don't think the internet is either.

A survey about people's opinions based on those here at MetaFilter would be largely skewed to a more liberal, open-minded stance, I would think.

While there are many a douchebags on this community they at least appear to be articulate douchebags, something not so common in "reality".

But what would I know? I'm just a teenager.
posted by liquorice at 10:09 PM on March 14, 2007


It all depends on the people you surround yourself with, really. You can make yourself believe that the majority of people are caring, sensitive types who are witty and sardonic and actually know things as opposed to saying things. I've thought about this a lot, really. In any case, there will always be some jerk who comes around and bursts your bubble, anyway.
posted by liquorice at 10:14 PM on March 14, 2007


Sorry, liquorice.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 10:19 PM on March 14, 2007


*claps hands over ears and continues to sing loudly*
posted by liquorice at 10:21 PM on March 14, 2007


Phire, one of the reasons I, and assumedly others, paid $5 was to be of help to people on askme with what I think is articulateness about and aptitude for various issues IRL. Just because klang found a thread that was set for and rife with overly fluffy validations and made laid with the idealism smackattack doesn't mean we are, as a whole, blue-state blue-pill nimrods.

I think the truth is that "ideals" do rarely "work" in real life, without substantial consequences. They are, however, easily espoused by anyone who knows what's "right," and the educated believe they do know, maybe more than do others, probably from successful proselytizing by intelligent arguments in the past.

It seems apparent that as a group, we are capable of great wit, intellect, research and ethical prescription, but it's greatest pragmatism ftw in 3d.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 10:36 PM on March 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


Happily, there is not measuring stick for real life.
posted by b1tr0t at 10:39 PM on March 14, 2007


*emo pout*

That, my friend, is adorable.

I think we're biased and that any and all advice on the green should be taken with some number of grains of salt apportioned according to the nature of the question, the credulousness of the asker, and the thoroughness and context of the response.

I don't think 'horrendously biased' or 'next to useless' are anywhere near the target, but I realize you were probably going for hyperbolic effect there.

There is no measuring stick for real life. Life isn't high school—it's less insular and less constrained and largely without the same sense of either looming authority or comforting structure, other than what you introduce of your own volition, and the answers you are seeing on the green are the product of a damned wide variety of experiences and volitions from folks all over the map. What general political or social biases may exist don't overshadow that essential variety of personal perspectives that seems to make AskMe tick.
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:56 PM on March 14, 2007


In all areas of life -- and most especially when you are in situations where people are telling you things rather than when you are experiencing them yourself -- a dogged determination to exercising your skills in critical thinking (also known as 'cutting through the bullshit') and remaining calm will see you through almost anything.

Metafilter is people, 'real life' is people. Because Metafilter's on the internet, some of those people feel more freedom to be and say things more... colorful... than they otherwise might in real life.

The upside is that nobody wants anything from you here, so you can rule that out as a vector of manipulativeness, at least.

Take everything, including this tedious old-guy advice, with a grain of salt.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 11:01 PM on March 14, 2007


Will AskMe tell me how to be adorable?
posted by liquorice at 11:12 PM on March 14, 2007


Shouldn't you ask that over there?
posted by jacalata at 11:35 PM on March 14, 2007


Asking AskMe whether I should ask it a question? *head explodes*
posted by liquorice at 11:52 PM on March 14, 2007 [1 favorite]


The answer to all three of the above questions is: no.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 11:55 PM on March 14, 2007


And to the original question for that matter.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 11:55 PM on March 14, 2007


as usual, i disagree with stavros
posted by keswick at 12:19 AM on March 15, 2007


but his name rocks! how can you not agree!

(I kid. and digress. but your name does rock.)
posted by Phire at 12:21 AM on March 15, 2007


I don't think 'horrendously biased' or 'next to useless' are anywhere near the target, but I realize you were probably going for hyperbolic effect there.

Yeah, given that nothing but 'horrendously biased' or 'next to useless' would come close to making me stop haunting AskMe. And even then, it's debatable, really.
posted by Phire at 12:23 AM on March 15, 2007


1. People want to help other people.
2. Especially in AskMe there are social pressures on the site to reward helpfulness and deter mean-spiritedness.
3. Mean-spirited answers disappear.

These last two things are different from some times in high school, and in post-high school life.

Mefites might be more lefty, more articulate, more educated than the average bear. But you can shape your real life to increase the number of such people you get to be friends with -- once you're out of high school, especially. Also, out of high school, people will by and large be freer to be the nice weirdoes they always wanted to be.
posted by LobsterMitten at 12:24 AM on March 15, 2007


as usual, i disagree with stavros

And all is right with the world!
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 12:41 AM on March 15, 2007


"Life is just like high school, except there is more money" spy
posted by hortense at 1:01 AM on March 15, 2007


On those occasions where political correctness overtakes reality on Mefi, there is usually someone calling BS, like klangklangston in the comment you highlighted. That's one of the excellent things about Mefi. I sometimes come here thinking that some issue will get the "usual internet treatment" -- shallow, knee-jerk reactions -- and while there can be a bit of that, it almost never gets bogged down in that because people call that shit out when they see it.

The internet anonymity factor may play into that, too. When I'm at a bar (god, when was the last time I was at a bar??) and some mixed-sex conversation turns to PC-stupidity, few people will call BS I find (and generally those are the people I want around). Here, not so much. The main thing you need to do is figure out who is being a helpful dick and who is just being a dick (or uselessly polite, as you initially suggested).
posted by dreamsign at 1:05 AM on March 15, 2007


Unless life is merely a continuation of High School

In many ways, yes. Yes, it is.

Employment is a lot like high school. Your boss is the principal. You're graded on shit that doesn't matter. Your ability to do stuff that DOES matter will get you no credit. You always have to be on time, even though the teacher is fifteen minutes late. And everyone is always sitting around the lunch table talking smack about the other kids in the class. The popular kids become less important, thankfully, but there is still always that one person whose ass you have to kiss if you want to get through the day alive.

The redeeming factor: at least in the "real world" you get PAID to put up with this shit.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 1:10 AM on March 15, 2007 [4 favorites]


And now the question turns to why there are so many people (I'm on March Break, don't look at me) up at 4 AM on a Thursday morning. There are more than a few of you in EST, I'll warrant.
posted by Phire at 1:48 AM on March 15, 2007


Er, Metafilter (and, you know, the internet) is international (if top-heavy with Americans). I live in Korea. It's just before 6 pm.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 1:52 AM on March 15, 2007


*points to the EST portion*

Although for not having been back to China in a decade, my sleeping patterns are suspiciously jet-laggy these days. ><
posted by Phire at 1:55 AM on March 15, 2007


Free advice: You get what you pay for.

Go back to bed.
posted by Dave Faris at 2:04 AM on March 15, 2007


No.
posted by puddinghead at 2:04 AM on March 15, 2007


Go back to Math, rather. Ew. MeFi's much more fun.
posted by Phire at 2:14 AM on March 15, 2007


Everyone sucks. Happy?
posted by liquorice at 2:16 AM on March 15, 2007


Many suck, some rock.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 2:23 AM on March 15, 2007


Sweet.
posted by Phire at 2:29 AM on March 15, 2007


*Group hug*

This might not be legal...
posted by The God Complex at 2:46 AM on March 15, 2007


On those occasions where political correctness overtakes reality on Mefi, there is usually someone calling BS, like klangklangston in the comment you highlighted.

The phrase "politically correct" becomes grating. It's only ever really been a possibly useful phrase in the U.S., and at that it's been inaccurate for nearly a decade - it would make more sense for people to use "politically correct" to describe science textbooks that include creationism.

But it's become the kitchen sink of contemptuous expression for anything that can even vaguely be joined to equality issues, so that here we end up with advice that "someone who cares about you... won't be bothered if you're more comfortable keeping a bra on" as "politically correct".

One can side with those who believe that the world does indeed contain people who don't care about (or possibly even like) deviations from what's considered beautiful or normal, or one can align with those who believe that this can only be a lie designed to make people feel better about themselves, but terming that belief "politically correct" is just muddy thinking.
posted by taz at 2:54 AM on March 15, 2007 [11 favorites]


'strue. Unless you're James Carville, personal relationships should not should not be political, and what's actually politically correct in the U.S. is more like Mussolini than Dr. Phil.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 3:30 AM on March 15, 2007


There are all kinds of odd biases devaluing the answers on ask.me. The most pervasive is prestige bias, with everyone most people competing to seem more articulate, more witty, and more tolerant than they perhaps are in "real life".
The particular ask.me bias that drives me nuts, is with regards to therapy. Questions about normal emotional or relationship issues are routinely answered by suggestions that the questioner seek some form of professional therapy. People rarely stick their heads above the parapet to suggest that questioners should just "suck it up", and deal with it themselves.
posted by roofus at 3:39 AM on March 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


terming that belief "politically correct" is just muddy thinking.

And that's an unrealistically narrow view if you really think that politics haven't invaded personal discourse. We could put a top ten list together of arguments you can't make on Mefi without being shouted down, despite the arguable validity of those arguments. What makes Mefi a decent place is that it doesn't happen very often, there aren't many such hot button arguments here, and dissent is tolerated, more or less. But my point wasn't about that. It was that, IRL, people may not tell you when they think your point is bullshit, because they're too worried about the ramifications of your relationship, be it work, school, whatever. Here, not so much.

Thanks for proving my point.
posted by dreamsign at 4:51 AM on March 15, 2007


roofus, you should not let that drive you nuts. Just suck it up.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 4:52 AM on March 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


I agree, roofus. One of these days I expect someone to be told they should probably seek out therapy because their plants keep dying. Or because their lightbulbs keep burning out.
posted by Justinian at 4:52 AM on March 15, 2007


Don't listen to Kirth. He needs to seek therapy.
posted by Justinian at 4:52 AM on March 15, 2007


OK, then, go crazy.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 4:54 AM on March 15, 2007


After reading this comment though,

Wait a minute, one lousy (and yes it was a lousy comment) is suddenly starting to make you wonder whether askme is any good. ONE comment?!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:12 AM on March 15, 2007


...people competing to seem more articulate, more witty, and more tolerant than they perhaps are in "real life".

How fucking dare you, cockface.
posted by Jofus at 5:13 AM on March 15, 2007 [2 favorites]


kids....
posted by caddis at 5:16 AM on March 15, 2007


On AskMe, and in "Real Life," it seems people often have problems making their wireless router work properly. William F. Buckley helped me with mine.
posted by Otis at 5:26 AM on March 15, 2007


For measuring what?
posted by DU at 5:53 AM on March 15, 2007


dreamsignWe could put a top ten list together of arguments you can't make on Mefi without being shouted down, despite the arguable validity of those arguments.
Let's hear it, dreamsign. I'm interested in that list.
go ahead, you won't destroy your mefi reputation
posted by jouke at 5:58 AM on March 15, 2007


Is Metafilter (as a collective) horrendously biased and therefore a crappy measuring stick for 'Real Life'?

If you mean a measuring stick for real life issues that apply to the 1% of the general population it's representative of, no, probably not.
posted by The Straightener at 6:14 AM on March 15, 2007


Are we a bunch of politically correct nerds?
Me: "Can feminists be bigots?"
Mefiperson: "What a stupidly insulting thesis! Blow it out your ass and get the fuck off my lawn, you emasculated, motherfucking, Holocaust denying retard!"

Yes. And no.
posted by falcon at 6:26 AM on March 15, 2007


And that's an unrealistically narrow view if you really think that politics haven't invaded personal discourse. We could put a top ten list together of arguments you can't make on Mefi without being shouted down, despite the arguable validity of those arguments.

To which politics does this correctness refer?
posted by desuetude at 6:27 AM on March 15, 2007


Often, askers get advice based on what we'd all like to pretend the world is like, where all people care about is what's inside, but that's simply not true.

I definitely agree with that. Another example is that you will always be told to make the big change in your life (like quitting or breaking up), regardless of the circumstances, because people wish they had the courage to do it themselves.
posted by smackfu at 6:30 AM on March 15, 2007


klangklangston didn't call BS, he misinterpreted the comment. You can find some feature or flaw of your partner gross or weird *and* not care about it. caddis didn't imply that no one would find the poster's breasts unattractive, just that someone who cared about her would not be distracted by her flaws. Is it tautological? Maybe a little. Is it BS? Well, how many weird-looking couples do you know?
posted by carmen at 6:37 AM on March 15, 2007


Yeah, mefi totally sucks the way bitches and homos get all uppity. It is so not like that in the real world.
posted by dame at 6:42 AM on March 15, 2007


You don't see the couples who broke up.
posted by smackfu at 6:43 AM on March 15, 2007


Oh, and to answer the original question: I find that MeFi is fairly analogous to my "real life," and when it isn't, it is more conservative.
posted by dame at 6:45 AM on March 15, 2007


AskMe actually strikes me as offering good advice, both in the practical and the philosophical realms. I never take any of it, but it's all good advice.
posted by OmieWise at 6:52 AM on March 15, 2007


*Group hug*

This might not be legal...


Yeah, not with all these teenagers around.
posted by mediareport at 6:55 AM on March 15, 2007


You don't see the couples who broke up.

But they are by definition the ones that didn't care.

Look, if you think of every single bodily weirdness that any lover of yours has every had (acne, eczema, sixth toe, excessive flatulence, weird hair growth/loss, large scars, whatever and etc.) and you decontextualize them into a survey that says:

Do men/women find the following
a) attractive
b) unattractive
c) unimportant

then you're going end up putting a lot of those weirdnesses into b or possibly c. And yet, chances are that you didn't break up with a person that you really loved because of one of those weirdnesses and you may even have started or intensified your relationships *despite* them. Which appeared to be caddis's point: that in relationships that matter, bodily oddities just don't add up to super important. The fact is both patently not BS and readily observable in the world around us.

Is it a sunshine-and-roses guarantee that everyone will be able to find such relationships? Of course not, but that wasn't in caddis's comment.
posted by carmen at 7:05 AM on March 15, 2007


Is this part of the thread where someone says "Most men over 40 (and, for the most part, under 40) would just be happy to be near a pair of actual naked human female breasts regardless of their shape"?

OK then.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 7:34 AM on March 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


Unless life is merely a continuation of High School

In many ways, yes. Yes, it is.


*skips class, gets stoned in the woods*

I don't know if there's really an andwer to this question. there's over 50,000 of us here and ultimately we don't all have anything in common beyond being literate English-speaking carbon-based bipedal life forms (and I could be wrong about some of us). So I'd be hard pressed to find any universal measuring sticks here.
posted by jonmc at 7:38 AM on March 15, 2007


Arguments you can't make on Mefi without being shouted down

10. Bill Hicks stole most of his material from Hitler
9. It doesn't really matter whether or not you declaw your cats, they still taste better than vegan "meatballs"
8. The "medicate/don't medicate" your emotional problems debate is stupid, because you'd probably feel better if you just took this opportunity to use your new diagnosis & insurance to get some sweetass mind-altering drugs, sell them on Craigslist for twice the price, and buy yourself something pretty
7. Your favorite band is okay
6. Kids these days are childish
5. Teh Gay is neither a lifestyle hack nor a superpower - it's a cologne
4. Profit
3. It's too easy being green
2. The war in Iraq is just a smokescreen to hide the conservative's real agenda to replace jessamyn with Rachel Ray
1. cortex sucks
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 7:44 AM on March 15, 2007 [13 favorites]


I'm more like a measuring tape than a yardstick, that's for sure. Does that help?
posted by exlotuseater at 7:49 AM on March 15, 2007


Unless life is merely a continuation of High School

In many ways, yes. Yes, it is.


I would disagree completely; I haven't had that experience (hell, even my high school experience wasn't typical high school). And that's one thing I like about AskMeta- there's a wide enough range of experience that there will be people whose experience resonates and teaches you, pretty much no matter what your background.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 7:51 AM on March 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


"On those occasions where political correctness overtakes reality on Mefi, there is usually someone calling BS, like klangklangston in the comment you highlighted. "

I didn't really see it as political correctness, just a strain of sort of an overly-validating train of thought I often see on the internet. Perhaps it was prompted by my roommate having just gotten back from a date with a "fatty," talking about how she's really cool but he won't date her further because she's not hot enough. Of course, he's a bit of a jerk on this, but on the other hand it's a fair thing for him to do (not date people who don't turn him on). In AskMe, the advice would be all on the side of validating the self-esteem of the girl, and I thought that was a little bit cloudcuckooland.

"Me: "Can feminists be bigots?"
Mefiperson: "What a stupidly insulting thesis! Blow it out your ass and get the fuck off my lawn, you emasculated, motherfucking, Holocaust denying retard!""

Oh, Falcon. Don't you remember? This intarweb is all connected, so people can go back and see what a moronic argument you were making, and how dishonest it was just by checking through your comments page. I had meant to call you out again for your inability to answer questions and repeated attempts to reframe the debate to match your insane worldview, but I figured by not going back there and letting you get the last word, you'd drop it and go back to chewing on bark or skull fucking kittens or time-cubing or whatever the hell you do on your free time when you're not insisting that women rule the world and oppress us men.
Don't you have a bus station to hand out pamphlets at?
posted by klangklangston at 8:10 AM on March 15, 2007


"But they are by definition the ones that didn't care."

Um. You can break up and still care for someone. Just like you can stay together with someone and still be squicked out by their, say, vestigial tail.
posted by klangklangston at 8:13 AM on March 15, 2007


For future reference, as I go all Delmoi on this thread, this: "Someone who cares about you won't care about the state of your breasts" was the clause I objected to.
posted by klangklangston at 8:15 AM on March 15, 2007


Phire writes "And now the question turns to why there are so many people (I'm on March Break, don't look at me) up at 4 AM on a Thursday morning."

Plenty of time to sleep when you're dead.

roofus writes "Questions about normal emotional or relationship issues are routinely answered by suggestions that the questioner seek some form of professional therapy. People rarely stick their heads above the parapet to suggest that questioners should just 'suck it up', and deal with it themselves."

I think this is because "suck it up" is self perceived as non-helpful, after all you aren't providing an actionable _solution_. Even if it is the best response.
posted by Mitheral at 8:16 AM on March 15, 2007


Perhaps it was prompted by my roommate having just gotten back from a date with a "fatty," talking about how she's really cool but he won't date her further because she's not hot enough. Of course, he's a bit of a jerk on this, but on the other hand it's a fair thing for him to do (not date people who don't turn him on).

You're in college, right? Because I will say that people's definition of attractive seems to change a lot between their early and late twenties. And his might, too.
posted by dame at 8:20 AM on March 15, 2007


horrendously biased

What's so horrendous about bias? Are there really folks who fancy themselves unbiased out there? If so, are they fooling anyone but themselves?
posted by breezeway at 8:21 AM on March 15, 2007


Just because bias is normal doesn't make it less horrendous. In fact, most normal human shit is pretty horrible.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 8:27 AM on March 15, 2007


And if you think mefi is biased, you should check out my tube amp.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:30 AM on March 15, 2007


"You're in college, right? Because I will say that people's definition of attractive seems to change a lot between their early and late twenties. And his might, too."

I'm in college, he's not, we're both 27.
posted by klangklangston at 8:32 AM on March 15, 2007


I prefer light blue dress shirts to white ones.

I generally like democratic political platforms more than republican ones.

I'm inclined to think that gay people and straight people are pretty much the same, with minor, insignificant, differences.

I enjoy college basketball, but I love the Maryland Terrapins.
posted by breezeway at 8:33 AM on March 15, 2007


"Someone who cares about you won't care about the state of your breasts" was the clause I objected to.

What's objectional about it? It's a pretty general statement.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:34 AM on March 15, 2007


Huh, klang. You know really shallow people. Or people who haven't been smacked around as much as some of the ones I know. Sorry for the assumption.
posted by dame at 8:36 AM on March 15, 2007


I think this is because "suck it up" is self perceived as non-helpful, after all you aren't providing an actionable _solution_. Even if it is the best response.

Of course, "suck it up" would be a more actionable solution if somebody would explain how to "suck it up" in extremely difficult situations, which actually is a skill that sometimes needs to be learned, especially when whatever/whoever is causing you distress is not likely to go away or get better by itself. I, for one, have never been crazy about the "close your eyes and think of England" method of dealing with getting raped. "Get therapy" is essentially the same as "talk to somebody about it", from the point of view that Therapists are better qualified for that task than anybody else, which is not necessarily true.

How to "suck it up" might be a good question for AskMe... or maybe not.
posted by wendell at 8:48 AM on March 15, 2007


Yes, 'political correctness' is an overused cliche that people apply to anything that makes them uncomfortable. On the other hand, around here if you deviate one iota from the current orthodoxies on certain subjects without a certain contingent branding you a bigot, which essentially stymies conversation.

As far asMefi-style conversation versus the real world. Well, in the real world most of the population dosen't care whether you, I, or anyone else lives, dies or grows roses out our ass. here we at least pretend to.
posted by jonmc at 8:57 AM on March 15, 2007


Obnoxious is a strange word.
posted by peacay at 9:07 AM on March 15, 2007


It's one I wear proudly, peacay.
posted by jonmc at 9:08 AM on March 15, 2007


"What's objectional about it? It's a pretty general statement."

It's defining "someone who cares about you" as "someone who does not care about your breasts." B does not follow from A.
posted by klangklangston at 9:19 AM on March 15, 2007


Actually jon, that random comment had zero to do with you and everything to do with my having misremembered the post wording by Phire. I thought the word 'horrendous' was 'obnoxious' - I read it ages ago and I just wandered back in and decided to throw in a circuit breaker comment. But it's true, obnoxious is a strange word.
posted by peacay at 9:23 AM on March 15, 2007


It seems to me this discussion largely misses the point. Of course there are people out there to whom appearance is paramount. I don't think that klangklangston was out of line for inserting that reality check.

But I also think that there isn't anything wrong with stressing a positive outlook. The reality (and I think it is more apparent to those of us to whom 40+ is closer than 20-30) is that a lot of people do have relatively elastic and realistic standards of appearance. Klangklangston basically points this out in the second half of his comment.

Some of us are just of the opinion that looking for a person of a more understanding proclivity might be a better solution than never taking your bra off or insisting on intercourse only when the blackout curtains are firmly drawn and the lightbulb has been smashed with a hammer (just in case).
posted by nanojath at 9:23 AM on March 15, 2007


I know, peacay. I just think that obnoxiousness is what will save us.
posted by jonmc at 9:29 AM on March 15, 2007


I know, peacay. I just think that obnoxiousness is what will save us.

Well, Obnoxiousness and carbon monoxide detectors. Seriously folks, they're like 20 bucks, pick one up.
posted by Divine_Wino at 9:37 AM on March 15, 2007


why not combine the two, and make a detector that sings ABBA songs in a Jimmy Durante voice and makes loud fart noises whenever it encounters the chemical. We'll call it the Obnoxide Detector.

Call Sears.
posted by jonmc at 9:40 AM on March 15, 2007


If klangklangston's roommate found his date attractive, he might not care about the fat. Or maybe fat will always be a deal breaker for him. Likewise, just because there are guys out there that dig fat (or don't care about size) doesn't mean she'll find true love. But the fact of the matter is that people overlook unattractive parts when they find the whole package attractive. Saying that is no more cloudcuckooland than saying that x feature will cause some lovers to reconsider. Both are valid, both represent different aspects of the "real world."


To be clear, I'm not suggesting that caddis=rocks, klangklangston=sucks. It's the caddis=fantasy, klangklangston=reality that I object to.

On preview: what nanojath said.
posted by carmen at 9:51 AM on March 15, 2007


But the fact of the matter is that people overlook unattractive parts when they find the whole package attractive.

So what you're saying is that my handsome face and cute butt make up for the vestigial twin sprouting from sternum?
posted by jonmc at 10:04 AM on March 15, 2007


It's defining "someone who cares about you" as "someone who does not care about your breasts." B does not follow from A.

Interesting, that's a pretty literal translation.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:05 AM on March 15, 2007


So what you're saying is that my handsome face and cute butt make up for the vestigial twin sprouting from sternum?

Yes. Those and your charming wit.
posted by carmen at 10:09 AM on March 15, 2007


But my vestigial twin needs love, too. What about him? His name is Howard. Howard Sternum.
posted by jonmc at 10:11 AM on March 15, 2007


I actually find Mefites to be some of the most incredibly useful, clever & cool people imaginable. Well, as long as you don't say anything nice about Ben Stein, cuz then they turn... man... do they turn! Aaaah! Stop throwing things, people!
::runs away::
posted by miss lynnster at 10:14 AM on March 15, 2007


WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU FATTIES YAMMERING ABOUT GO GET YET ANOTHER GODDAMN TWINKIE
posted by Mister_A at 10:39 AM on March 15, 2007


Not even quonsar does quonsar well. Please stop pretending to be him. One of him is about 150% too much as it is.
posted by Dave Faris at 11:15 AM on March 15, 2007


Every party needs its pooper, that's why Dave Farts.
posted by breezeway at 11:26 AM on March 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


Of all the nerve!
posted by Mister_A at 12:38 PM on March 15, 2007


I hope carmen realizes that comment will be picked up by the Yahoobot, increasing the "caddis rocks" "klangklangston sucks" count and affecting the result at sucks-rocks.com. Any additional usage of the phrases on the same webpage will not. But strictly in fairness, let me say... "caddis sucks" "klangklanston rocks". This does not necessarily represent the opinion of the wendell.

But as an act of kindness, I'm going to be inserting "stavrosthewonderchicken rocks" into my comments in various threads. (A 3.3, man? Ouch!)
posted by wendell at 12:41 PM on March 15, 2007


READ IT AND WEEP DAVE
posted by Mister_A at 12:43 PM on March 15, 2007


So, that somehow validates your desire to pretend to be him? I don't see what you're driving at.
posted by Dave Faris at 12:55 PM on March 15, 2007


These stavrosthewonderchicken rocks - are they the ones he is going to swallow to aid his digestion, or ones he's already used?
posted by Kirth Gerson at 1:02 PM on March 15, 2007


We get it, Dave. You're the guardian of propriety and class. Pin a rose on you.
posted by jonmc at 1:02 PM on March 15, 2007


MeFi isn't a bunch of PC nerds? What about all the threads about how "metafilter is about dios"? If he toed the party line like everyone else, no one would notice.

Regarding the fatties, the point being made by both sides needs to be clarified, since the accusations being made are just stupid. Both sides are saying this:
1) Fat people can be attractive, whether because or in spite of their fat. Such attractiveness is obviously in the eye of the beholder.
2) KK's roommate thinks this individual fat person is unattractive.

The question is therefore whether 2 has an implication of moral responsibility attached to it--does he have the obligation to suck it up and pretend to like her in order to counteract the dominant societal bias against fat people and assert his independence therefrom? Dame and her ilk seem to be responding to a strawman, namely "fats R ugly lol." I see no evidence that the roommate thinks that--it is possible that he finds fat a turn-off, but in this situation the chemical equation balanced in such a way that the net result is negative. Which is okay. I don't think he has the PC obligation to pretend that oppressed groups are perfect or deserve special treatment. That is just a waste product of the hivemind's working process.

See, it's possible to separate the bullshit from the vaguely-non-bullshit.
posted by nasreddin at 1:06 PM on March 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


oh, oh. No. I wasn't accusing you all of pretending to be quonsar. I was just referring to that one comment. The rest of you can feel free to whack off as you wish.
posted by Dave Faris at 1:06 PM on March 15, 2007


Too late, Dave. The moment's gone.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 1:11 PM on March 15, 2007


Dave? You know that link in your last comment? I stopped whacking off long enough to click on it, and I don't think it's what you wanted to do ...
posted by Kirth Gerson at 1:11 PM on March 15, 2007


Yea Dave, I think I actually validated the shit out of that premise. Your interpretation is, as always, the only possible one.
posted by Mister_A at 1:12 PM on March 15, 2007


Metafilter: feel free to whack off as you wish.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 1:38 PM on March 15, 2007


Truth be told, Id rather fondle my own 'man' breasts than touch those horribly deformed entities. I mean, crapping Christ, fly those fucking monstrosities over Illinois and they'd all be praying to spit in Jesus's holy anus. Wouldn't you?
posted by econous at 1:47 PM on March 15, 2007


Not to invalidate an already meaningless statistic, but...
posted by team lowkey at 2:57 PM on March 15, 2007


None of this is about me. Why not? My man-breasts hang like spent liverwurst casings.
posted by maxwelton at 4:33 PM on March 15, 2007


Just to be clear: the reason MeFi is not as PC as idiots who use that term think has nothing to do with klang's fatty-hating roommate, about whom I made erroneous assumptions.
posted by dame at 8:39 PM on March 15, 2007


I am not politically correct. This pisses off some people. I am empathetic to the human condition. I think that is more honest than polical correctness. Don't ever ask me to be "correct.' I'll punch you. Sorry, no hard feelings.
posted by caddis at 9:20 PM on March 15, 2007


Do people with moobs go out with no shirt on? Because that would be wrong.
posted by liquorice at 11:02 PM on March 15, 2007


What's sad is that whenever I talk to him about the girls that he has these first dates with, I get the feeling that the reason he doesn't want to date a fat, or otherwise "unattractive," girl is that he feels that he needs my (and by extension, other guys') approval on the girls he dates. Like, he's frontin' on not liking them because they're "fatties." And it's like, man, I don't care if you date a fatty. I'm not the one who's involved, I'm not the one making the final compatibility determination. Besides that, if you don't like her for whatever reason, that's fine. You don't have to rely on her being fat to explain to me why you didn't like her.
But hey, whatever. In retrospect, I was more of a dick than I had to be to Caddis, and feel kinda embarrassed by having that, of all comments on AskMe, called out as great. I meant what I said, but I over-reacted.
posted by klangklangston at 11:23 PM on March 15, 2007


What's sad is that whenever I talk to him about the girls that he has these first dates with, I get the feeling that the reason he doesn't want to date a fat, or otherwise "unattractive," girl is that he feels that he needs my (and by extension, other guys') approval on the girls he dates.

This is a sadly common phenomenon. One of the best things about growing up is giving less of a shit about other guys' approval. (Assuming you do actually grow up rather than just getting older.)
posted by languagehat at 6:22 AM on March 16, 2007


"One of the best things about growing up is giving less of a shit about other guys' approval."

One of the others is banging all the fat chicks.

Sweet, sweet fat chicks.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 6:54 AM on March 16, 2007


You like fat chicks but not hobbettes?
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 7:03 AM on March 16, 2007


in the back of an SUV, on the way home from having the cat declawed
posted by caddis at 7:09 AM on March 16, 2007


from now on, the word "declawed" shall be replaced by "in my ass" and the acronym "SUV" shall be replaced by "oozing sore on my penis".

Cortex, make it so!!!!



cortex?
posted by taz at 7:49 AM on March 16, 2007


klangklangston: "I had meant to call you out again for your inability to answer questions"

Well thanks for clearing that up. I thought the effort of deploying a comparison to Holocaust denial to close down a conversation about argument suppression had caused you to vanish in a flash of recursive improbability.
posted by falcon at 8:04 AM on March 16, 2007


When you believe in ridiculous conspiracies, don't be surprised to find yourself ridiculed and compared to other ridiculous conspiracy theories, especially if you emply the same pseudo-logic.
posted by klangklangston at 9:11 AM on March 16, 2007


"haiysteenins, please fetch a taxi, ms laemon, please bring your notepad, I wish to make a staemont before we drive OFF THE FUCKING CLIFF"

jeez

and make a detector that sings ABBA songs in a Jimmy Durante voice
heh

ethel merman sings Foghat software will also be available
posted by clavdivs at 11:25 AM on March 16, 2007



Employment is a lot like high school. Your boss is the principal. You're graded on shit that doesn't matter. Your ability to do stuff that DOES matter will get you no credit...


I don't work at places like that. Sorry to hear that you do.

p.s. When I was in high school, I pretty much refused to do the shit that didn't matter.
posted by bingo at 1:37 PM on March 16, 2007


Metafilter: feel free to whack off as you wish.

I think this is actually the definitive iteration of this joke, and it should no longer be made. I mean, could it get more accurate?
posted by davejay at 5:02 PM on March 16, 2007


klangklangston: don't worry about it. I've made the politically incorrect suggestion that there may be gender bias in the media. You are the opinion editor of a newspaper that derives its income from advertising to a 65% female graduate college. It was bound to be rough - it's not like there is no motive or opportunity. I'm sorry you chose to substitute politically correct ridicule for intelligent debate, but only because I found it unconvincing and I prefer to learn from any time I invest here. See you in the threads - Ciao.

(Phire - don't worry about 'Reality" either - you don't get fat just because your local store stocks junk food. It's all about informed choice, ignoring the advertising and checking the ingredients for shit. There are some great brains here - just be selective).
posted by falcon at 3:59 PM on March 17, 2007


"klangklangston: don't worry about it. I've made the politically incorrect suggestion that there may be gender bias in the media. You are the opinion editor of a newspaper that derives its income from advertising to a 65% female graduate college. It was bound to be rough - it's not like there is no motive or opportunity. I'm sorry you chose to substitute politically correct ridicule for intelligent debate, but only because I found it unconvincing and I prefer to learn from any time I invest here. See you in the threads - Ciao."

Oh, you sweet, sweet little man. Why, of course it's all about political correctness! That's the most obvious answer! And me, poor me, working in college has given me the collaborator's false consciousness in this gender jihad. Those clever women, arranging to have fewer positions of power, and to be paid less on average, just so they can keep their reigns on, what, exactly? This is some John Le Carre, Spy Who Came In From The Cold shit, my friend.
Remember, that this position is "politically correct" does not make it wrong, and it does not follow that the ridicule would more likely follow from that viewpoint than the simpler "You're talking bullshit without supporting it" one.
Maybe I'm just enough of a man to not feel oppressed.
posted by klangklangston at 7:37 PM on March 17, 2007 [1 favorite]


indeed.
:)
posted by clavdivs at 11:43 AM on March 18, 2007


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