The Few, The Proud, The Beans June 30, 2007 9:07 AM   Subscribe

This AskMe should be encased in glass as the definitive example of "overthinking a plate of beans." Or a few plates. Perhaps it can be part of the sign up process for new members. "After reading this, are you sure want to join such a community?"
posted by The Deej to MetaFilter-Related at 9:07 AM (53 comments total)

In reality... I mean this as a "good callout." It shows the variety of opinions, and different ways of thinking that MeFites bring to even a simple question. That is a valuable commodity.
posted by The Deej at 9:08 AM on June 30, 2007


And now you're meta-thinking said thinking.
posted by jouke at 9:14 AM on June 30, 2007


Just never ask us to order lunch together.
posted by pupdog at 9:17 AM on June 30, 2007


Reeeelly Ossifer, I only had a few fine brewskis. I can 'rive juss fine.
posted by caddis at 9:20 AM on June 30, 2007


Yeah, well, I like you MeFites and everything, but you'd be hell on a long road trip.
posted by The Deej at 9:27 AM on June 30, 2007


the answer is, of course, "as many as you can get away with"
posted by pyramid termite at 9:31 AM on June 30, 2007


More like "overthinking a plate of leftovers."
posted by googly at 9:42 AM on June 30, 2007


As a wise man from Issaquah once remarked, "Language is a liquid that we're all dissolved in / great for solving problems, after it creates a problem".

Also, I wouldn't want to belong to any club that would accept me as a member.

By which I mean to say, you figure it out.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 9:51 AM on June 30, 2007


We might lose a few members, but how many would we really lose? Three? Four?
posted by Astro Zombie at 9:55 AM on June 30, 2007 [2 favorites]


Lamda*x*(not(large^C(abs(x))))?
posted by ormondsacker at 10:00 AM on June 30, 2007




What's really strange for me is that I was just discussing this with a friend and we both came to the exact same conclusion that exlotuseater gave.

Odd.
posted by CitrusFreak12 at 10:48 AM on June 30, 2007


Yeah I would have done so too but I brought up the "literal vs. metaphorical Viking" thing last time 'round and I now no longer have any friends.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 10:58 AM on June 30, 2007


What's really strange for me is that I was just discussing this with a friend and we both came to the exact same conclusion that exlotuseater gave.

Aside from a "couple" (for which the definition is quite literal), the idea that there should be an agreed upon value for each of these general notions of numeracy is pure lunacy! If I say a "few" I mean, roughly speaking, anywhere between two and four, but clearly I'm not yet sure as to the actual value. If you want a strict value, use the number!

You twits.
posted by The God Complex at 10:59 AM on June 30, 2007


A few, several, some, or many? Discuss.

Just know if you get it wrong, you will be banned.
posted by miss lynnster at 10:59 AM on June 30, 2007 [1 favorite]


Ha! That's good. I'm gonna go with ... a handful.
posted by The Deej at 11:01 AM on June 30, 2007


I must be on my way to becoming a cranky, old man because I'm really starting to get annoyed by catch phrases.

It used to be that I'd read something like "overthinking a plate of beans" and a switch in my head would trip. Basically, I'd just instinctively ignore the person since they were obviously some kind of a me-tooer trying to gain acceptance from the clique by emulating what they perceive to be alpha-mannerisms.

Now though, rather than just being a knee-jerk, dismissive asshole, I'm genuinely annoyed by it. Weird.
posted by willnot at 11:10 AM on June 30, 2007 [4 favorites]


Let's talk about the tagging on that post: it's bad. Bad, bad, bad. Not useful.
posted by Tuwa at 11:12 AM on June 30, 2007


A few, several, some, or many? Discuss. Just know if you get it wrong, you will be banned.

'Just know if you get it wrong, you will be canned.'
posted by ericb at 11:20 AM on June 30, 2007


Your favorite plate of beans is overthought.
posted by moonbird at 11:20 AM on June 30, 2007 [1 favorite]


So, what you are saying, willnot, is you are a beancrank. That's the new catchword for people who are annoyed by catchphrases, specifically bean-related ones.
posted by The Deej at 11:21 AM on June 30, 2007


Blackadder: Right Baldrick, let's try again. This is called adding. If I have two beans and then I add two more beans, what do I have?

Baldrick: Some beans.

Blackadder: Yes...and no. Let's try again, shall we? I have two beans, then I add to more beans what does that make?

Baldrick: A very small casserole.

Blackadder: Baldrick, the ape creature of the Indus have mastered this. Now, try again. One, two, three, four! So how many are there?

Baldrick: Three

Blackadder: What.

Baldrick: (Pointing to one) And that one.

Blackadder: (Picking it up) Three and that one. So if I add that one to the three what will I have?

Baldrick: Ah! Some beans.

Blackadder: Yes. To you Baldrick, the rennaissance was just something that happened to other people, wasn't it?


MeFi: Some Beans
posted by pupdog at 11:28 AM on June 30, 2007 [10 favorites]


Very apt pupdog
posted by jouke at 11:31 AM on June 30, 2007


That was a good thread for one reason and one reason only: It smoked out the completely insane people who think "couple" can mean "three." For that alone we as a community should be thankful.
posted by majick at 11:39 AM on June 30, 2007 [1 favorite]


The thing about "beans" is, it went past annoying for me so long ago that now I've surrendered to it with a shoulder shrug. Beans beans beans. See? It does nothing to me now. Tra la la!
posted by miss lynnster at 12:00 PM on June 30, 2007


That was a good thread for one reason and one reason only: It smoked out the completely insane people who think "couple" can mean "three." For that alone we as a community should be thankful.

I was just going to say the same thing. Before that thread, I had no idea that anyone seriously thought that couple could mean anything other than two. Jokingly, evasively...sure. Sincerely? Unfuckingbelievable.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 12:01 PM on June 30, 2007


I'm pretty sure that's one of those "life-saver" askme's that everyone has been prattling on about lately.
posted by Dave Faris at 12:02 PM on June 30, 2007


It seems to me that there could be a couple of right answers, maybe a few that were close and several that would be wrong but only a handful of people would realize this.
posted by Sailormom at 12:13 PM on June 30, 2007


A good friend of mine (hey duffell!) had to illustrate an idiom when he was in kindergarten. In retrospect, I suppose this was an exercise in learning to not think literally all the time. So, while kids were drawing chips taken off old blocks, or apples in one's eye, my good friend decided he couldn't possibly go that route. Why would you settle for drawing a tired, cliched idiom, when you could illustrate an idiom you made up yourself? So, he went the extra mile makng up his own idiom that he was sure would catch on, which is why to this day he has an drawing of a man with an enormous bean for a head walking, with two other guys pointing at him saying, "Hey, BEANHEAD."

I guess what I'm trying to say here is that you guys are all acting like a bunch of beanheads. Knock it off.
posted by piratebowling at 12:14 PM on June 30, 2007


You know what's funny? Someone asked the exact same question in the first week or so of Ask MeFi, and it was like their 5th question in two days.

Because of that dumb question, we developed guidelines and added limits so one person couldn't hog the place with their idle thoughts.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 12:18 PM on June 30, 2007


couldn't hog the place with their idle thoughts
Good luck with that.
posted by jouke at 12:25 PM on June 30, 2007


Why can't we just let everyone have a few questions a month?
posted by The Deej at 12:25 PM on June 30, 2007


Slyly, The Deej slips a question into someone else's question.
posted by Cranberry at 12:39 PM on June 30, 2007


Uhhh, look up. Check out the name of the OP. He's actually slyly just getting 2 questions for the price of 1.
posted by miss lynnster at 12:42 PM on June 30, 2007


Now that I think about it... this actually gives the phrase "bean counting" a whole new meaning to me really...
posted by miss lynnster at 12:45 PM on June 30, 2007


The best plate of beans:

1) can of fool beans

2) sea salt

3) olive oil

4) coriander

5) fresh chopped garlic

6) small dab of peri-peri sauce
posted by By The Grace of God at 12:50 PM on June 30, 2007


Shhhhh, miss lynnster.
posted by The Deej at 12:56 PM on June 30, 2007


You know what's funny? Someone asked the exact same question in the first week or so of Ask MeFi, and it was like their 5th question in two days. Ha! Double! Delete!! BAN!! With Prejudice!!!!
posted by philomathoholic at 1:26 PM on June 30, 2007


Wasn't me! I'm a 21ker!!!
posted by The Deej at 1:31 PM on June 30, 2007


Hunh, when I saw that question, I assumed it was about a drinking problem.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 2:02 PM on June 30, 2007


I amazed the hell out of a friend, back in college, by successfully order "a couple" burritos or burgers or something at a drive-through without proffering or being asked for clarification. Poor son of a bitch had never even conceived of "a couple" as having a generalized cardinal interpretation like that. It led to a sprawling college-nerd discussion of the theories of binding fixed numeric values to ambiguous descriptors—when "couple" could and could not be taken to mean two, how the bounds of "a few" and "several" and "some" would shift and scale with context, the circumstances where otherwise explicit labels like "two" or "a dozen" could be taken as non-literal expressions of magnitude, i.e. as other than precisely 2 or 12.

So what I'm saying is, great job, Mefi: we're a bunch of snot-nosed college kids in the Taco Bell drivethrough yelling at each other.
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:42 PM on June 30, 2007


Mefi: we're a bunch of snot-nosed college kids in the Taco Bell drivethrough yelling at each other.

That's about right.
posted by The World Famous at 5:39 PM on June 30, 2007



posted by exlotuseater at 7:50 PM on June 30, 2007


wait. what. this.
posted by exlotuseater at 7:54 PM on June 30, 2007


Mefi: we're a bunch of snot-nosed college kids in the Taco Bell drivethrough yelling at each other.

Dude, that's the whole Internet. Didn't the first Ethernet packet say "you suck!" in hex?
posted by lysdexic at 7:57 PM on June 30, 2007


I pity the few.
posted by rob511 at 8:57 PM on June 30, 2007


I pity the many and the in-betweens.
posted by cgc373 at 1:19 AM on July 1, 2007


Imagine what would have happened if Ralph had said "Sleep! That's where I'm a few Vikings!"
posted by L. Fitzgerald Sjoberg at 11:48 AM on July 1, 2007 [1 favorite]


Discussed in MetaTalk!!! I've arrived! Finally!
posted by josher71 at 12:42 PM on July 1, 2007


Actually, I was very surprised (and pleased) by the amount of responses to the question.
posted by josher71 at 12:45 PM on July 1, 2007


Wellll, ya... josher71, don't get a big head. It was me who started the thread, not anyone of any notoriety. That may give yoou null points.

Now, if one the MeFi celebs started a MeTa, even to call you out, that's a feather in the cap! :)

Or a few feathers.
posted by The Deej at 12:51 PM on July 1, 2007


I'd call that several, not a few. But that's just me.
posted by pupdog at 1:37 PM on July 1, 2007


If it's just you then it's one, pupdog.
posted by cgc373 at 2:49 PM on July 1, 2007


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