Look, Ma, I'm full of piss and vinegar April 6, 2008 12:08 PM   Subscribe

Hickory Dickery Dank, this thread is full of wank.

I hate myself for posting this, but there is too much pissing on things in the Heston thread. Please piss on each other wrt speaking ill of the dead vs pissing on graves vs pissing on loafers here. As a Chuck Heston fan who believes he turned into a schmuck in later life, I would appreciate it.
posted by crataegus to Etiquette/Policy at 12:08 PM (216 comments total)

all i've got to say is that when michael moore goes, i won't be able to piss on his grave because i don't do mountain climbing
posted by pyramid termite at 12:13 PM on April 6, 2008 [7 favorites]


wow pyramid termite, that's a really useless way to kick off this thread.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 12:15 PM on April 6, 2008 [13 favorites]


Obit threads, always turn to shit. I blame the dead people. Let's kill them all.
posted by jonmc at 12:15 PM on April 6, 2008 [12 favorites]


There seems to be a fundamental disagreement about the purpose of an obit thread, which is most evident when a controversial person dies. If only Fred Rogers could die every day.
posted by found missing at 12:16 PM on April 6, 2008


it appears the wank levees have breached.
posted by Busithoth at 12:17 PM on April 6, 2008 [2 favorites]


The opening comment in the Heston thread really seemed to set the tone I guess. But man, what a zinger.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 12:18 PM on April 6, 2008


Psst!

It's b/c of teh snark.
posted by stinkycheese at 12:18 PM on April 6, 2008


Obviously we need to have threads where we trash the barely living, so as not to be offensive after they've passed. We can even send emails to the soon-to-be-friends-of-the-reaper alerting them to the post, so they (or their hospice worker) can reply.
posted by papercake at 12:18 PM on April 6, 2008


The real news here is that we managed to go a full US/Pacific day without a single MeTa.
posted by b1tr0t at 12:22 PM on April 6, 2008 [7 favorites]


Both sides of the respect the dead/pissing on graves argument seem to be having an e-dick fight. I'm an insensitive clod. I am among the first to disrespect the dead. I was cackling over "cold dead hands" and "filthy paws" jokes minutes after his obit hit CNN last night. Reading that thread, though, I think a lot of people should take a deep breath, step away from the keyboard, and close their front doors on their hands repeatedly for a few minutes in an attempt to get some perspective.

Chuck Heston was a bit big on over-the-top. It's part of what made him such a great actor. Later in life, he was not only a vocal gun ownership activist and president of the NRA, but he was also a bit of an ass. Still, he had more class than any of us. I'm not asking everyone to respect him just because he was the last of Hollywood Glory in our time, but Jesus, folks, calm it down. There's poking fun, and then there's unnecessary vitriol.
posted by crataegus at 12:23 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


Nothing against the poster, but maybe the thread would have been better with more than a link to a comingsoon.net article. When there is no context, people just post on what they know, some of which was wrong -- e.g. Heston always being against gun control (he wasn't) and only being a b-movie actor (he wasn't). Obit threads on controversial figures are always going to have mixed responses, but there is a definite tone set when the post is bare-bones like this one was.
posted by Locative at 12:25 PM on April 6, 2008


Sometimes the MeFi community just bums me out.
posted by sneakin at 12:26 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


You chased Smedleyman away, you damn dirty bastards. He was one of the best posters here.
posted by jtron at 12:27 PM on April 6, 2008 [6 favorites]


all i've got to say is that when michael moore goes, i won't be able to piss on his grave because i don't do mountain climbing

Fuck that guy, seriously.
posted by Krrrlson at 12:29 PM on April 6, 2008


papercake, I was wondering if the still lucid near-death celebrities asked for access to the pre-written obits that major news services have prepared in advance, to refute/contest their treatment. what else do old fart has-beens got to do, anyway? it could be a bonding experience with their grandkids!
posted by Busithoth at 12:29 PM on April 6, 2008


As others above have noted, part of the problem is that in the poster's rush to win the race to post the obit, he failed to include any sort of historical or cultural context. It could have been done easily; Heston's contributions to politics and film are legion.

Other posters have helpfully contributed their own links, but it is a weak post that begat weak repsonses.

I should also note, to those that demand nothing but punctuation in obit threads, that there is a difference between speaking ill of a dead person and speaking ill of their ideas. While both usually turn up in these sorts of threads, a person's death does not preclude their ideas from criticism, especially if they had many followers and supporters. In fact, their ideas represent their historical legacy, so it's foolish to suggest that discussion of them should be forbidden.
posted by anifinder at 12:30 PM on April 6, 2008 [2 favorites]


Speaking ill of people who have had a greater impact on the world than all of us put together ever will is our right as Americans.
posted by Mr. President Dr. Steve Elvis America at 12:30 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


Predictable, so much so that I have yet to even view that thread.
posted by caddis at 12:30 PM on April 6, 2008


"when michael moore goes, i won't be able to piss on his grave because i don't do mountain climbing"

'Cause he's fat, so it will take a lot of earth to cover his corpse!

Hoo boy, that's comedy gold.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 12:36 PM on April 6, 2008 [5 favorites]


Fuck that guy, seriously.

Clearly, only in the Bizarro World of Krrrlson is it right to equate criticism of someone who organizes a cadre of gun nuts to bully grieving parents with criticism of someone who is overweight, because he's overweight. Very well thought out.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 12:38 PM on April 6, 2008 [4 favorites]


The resulting hullabaloos always end up with the same lameass circular arguments. As much as I've found some memorial FPPS moving or edifying I think it's time for a . for ObitFilter.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 12:41 PM on April 6, 2008


Clearly, only in the Bizarro World of Krrrlson is it right to equate criticism...

Hey, fuck you! Look at that, I just "criticized" you.
posted by Krrrlson at 12:46 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


I think it's time for a . for ObitFilter
I absolutely agree. Or at least take multiple submissions and hold them and let the mods choose the most suitable one for a FPP after a few days. And keep the poster anon so it's not a pissing match to get their first. FIRST! Cause if you take time to build a decent post someone will have single-linked to a blog or something.
posted by dawson at 12:47 PM on April 6, 2008 [3 favorites]


Hey, fuck you! Look at that, I just "criticized" you.

Blazecock Pileon, always taking the high road.
posted by Dennis Murphy at 9:53 AM on April 6 [1 favorite +] [!]

1 user marked this as a favorite:
Krrrlson April 6, 2008 10:00 AM

posted by Blazecock Pileon at 12:48 PM on April 6, 2008


I snark on Heston because he and his followers took themselves so goddamn seriously. And pretended to know what was best for the rest of us and told us so. That kind of attitude whether from the right, left or whatever leaves one open to lampooning, dead or alive.
posted by telstar at 12:52 PM on April 6, 2008


Smedleyman gone.

The worst loss since I became a member.
posted by jamjam at 12:53 PM on April 6, 2008 [3 favorites]


You chased Smedleyman away, you damn dirty bastards. He was one of the best posters here.

He's gone?! Fuck. He really was one of the best posters here.
posted by homunculus at 12:55 PM on April 6, 2008 [3 favorites]


That thread is an ugly and pointless thing, and yet so much classier than the Buckley obit thread.

Why do we run these sort of posts again? Oh yeah, because Metafilter is about the conversation.
posted by LarryC at 12:55 PM on April 6, 2008


Yeah, let's do that thing on restricting obit threads. Throwing a bunch of periods into cyberspace is a weak way of expressing condolences anyway. It's nothing like a real moment of silence.
posted by WalterMitty at 12:57 PM on April 6, 2008


Most of the problem was simple: that was an incredibly crappy post. If the poster had done his goddamn job instead of "omg I have to be firstfirstfirstzomgfirst!", we'd have had a much better thread.

I think all rushed obit threads should be terminated, immediately, with extreme prejudice. And if someone takes the time to put up something thoughtful, it should trump an earlier, lower-quality post.

Obitfilter on MeFi sucks primarily because the the obit posts themselves suck. If the mods stop allowing the bullshit one-liners, things will immediately improve.
posted by Malor at 12:57 PM on April 6, 2008 [6 favorites]


Nothing against the poster, but maybe the thread would have been better with more than a link to a comingsoon.net article.

Obit posts are a bit dull anyway and they become even worse when people race to be the first to post and have just one piece of crap link. This should be an area where the mods delete all one link snore-fests and wait for the post that is well researched and well thought out. Is it because they're dead that the posts are allowed to stand?

Clint Eastwood is old.

How long would that last?

On preview: Or what everyone has just said...
posted by meech at 12:59 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


I'm not so hot with the analogies admittedly, but it seems to me that eliminating obit threads because they tend to produce unbearable comments and alienate people is akin to, say, deciding to eliminate alleyways because knife-fights tend to occur there.
posted by stinkycheese at 1:00 PM on April 6, 2008


As others above have noted, part of the problem is that in the poster's rush to win the race to post the obit, he failed to include any sort of historical or cultural context.

Amen. I made a snarky comment to that effect in the thread. (And it was deleted, which is fine.)

Obituaries are a category of news, and with any breaking news we tend to get half-assed posts from people trying to get the post up quickly.
posted by LarryC at 1:02 PM on April 6, 2008


Its more akin to Yankee Stadium stopping beer sales in the 7th inning.
posted by found missing at 1:02 PM on April 6, 2008


Or we could put the personal snark in MetaTalk and the impersonal snark in MeFi.
posted by WalterMitty at 1:02 PM on April 6, 2008


Oh, and Smedleyman: please unpush the button. Yes, that thread was a wreck, but that's because of the bullshit framing that didn't recognize any of the truths that you tried to point out.

YOU should have been the one to make that FPP, but of course you would have taken your time and done it right, so you'd have been beaten by zomgfirst! guy.
posted by Malor at 1:03 PM on April 6, 2008 [2 favorites]


MetaFilter: knife-fights tend to occur there.
posted by ericb at 1:03 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


Jesus, it'd save so much time if we could just have a standardized "Mad Lib" type fill-in-the-blank template on hand to use for the MeTa post that inevitably ensues when yet another unreflecting premature eulogization obitfilter FPP inevitably turns into yet another battle for the between the "you may not speak ill of the dead" and "you must speak ill of the dead" contingents.
posted by FelliniBlank at 1:04 PM on April 6, 2008


I was grateful for the thread because it allowed me to write a note to my roommates suggesting that they dedicate the 15th anniversary edition of their former college's newspaper to Chuck Heston. Not only did they try to form a society for the prevention of planet of the apes, but a large portion of the paper was dedicated to pissing off the (majority) hippie population of that school.
posted by piratebowling at 1:07 PM on April 6, 2008


How about automating obitfilter? 1) A direct feed from the NY Times obit page to create a FPP for each celeb death. 2) Thread automatically populated with dots for each registered MeFi member. 3) Thread immediately closes.
posted by found missing at 1:08 PM on April 6, 2008 [14 favorites]


Chased Smedley away? Nice going.
posted by caddis at 1:08 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


I think an obituary post should be held to the same standard as any other post on Metafilter. The obit-post on Metafilter today about Heston is like so many others I've seen. In a rush to be first on the main page it provides no context. It basically says, "He's dead, go at it."

The more robust a post is, the more it helps guide the conversation that takes place in the comments that follow it. A vague, limp post on an inflammatory topic will eventually, inevitably, lead to a cluster fuck. A nice, rich, nuanced post, like I've seen from hadjiboy, for example, will inspire a more directed, focus conversation.

That's all I'm saying.
posted by kbanas at 1:08 PM on April 6, 2008 [2 favorites]


Yeah, shitty post. Should be nuked. A higher standard for obit filter would be nice.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:11 PM on April 6, 2008


WHAT
THE
FUCK
SMEDLEYMAN?


The real news here is that we managed to go a full US/Pacific day without a single MeTa.

Oh... I see. Oh, God. I can finally quit! FREE AT LAST, OH THANK GOD ALMIGHTY I'M FREE AT LAST!!
posted by loquacious at 1:11 PM on April 6, 2008


But I think that's part of the problem here, too.

I mean, who's going to dedicate the time and effort to craft a really great post about Charlton Heston - and one could be made, for damn sure - when they can be nearly certain that it's going to be blown away as a double because some ass tart wants to see his name in lights as soon as CNN breaks a story?
posted by kbanas at 1:14 PM on April 6, 2008


I don't think it's obit threads that go poorly. Evidence A. There are also some great obit threads about obscure but intersting people. The problem is that political threads are awful and the touchiness around death makes them even worse. The idea that if the post had lots of links to Heston's film work and early life would have prevented this is flawed, I think. For one thing, it assumes people with an axe to grind are going to stop to read a link first.

There was a (now deleted, I think) comment on the Heston thread that said something like "I will never respect Heston or the people here who agreed with his politics."

never respect

What kind of conversation can you have when some of the contributors have, as a ground rule, a refusal to respect people who think differently than they do?
posted by Bookhouse at 1:18 PM on April 6, 2008 [3 favorites]


I hate learning that someone I liked died via a meta callout.
posted by iguanapolitico at 1:18 PM on April 6, 2008


There have been at least a few instances where the second post is kept and the first crappy one is deep-sixed. And by god, when I'm elected Empress, I'll blast every successive Me First! obitfilter post with my DeathRay Sceptre until a decent one shows up.

*proffers can to collect Audacity of Hope spare change*
posted by FelliniBlank at 1:19 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


The idea that if the post had lots of links to Heston's film work and early life would have prevented this is flawed, I think.

Okay, that is an ugly sentence. Short and sweet: good links are not a shield against flung poo.
posted by Bookhouse at 1:20 PM on April 6, 2008


I like obitfilter because it's usually the first place I find out about the person's death. I like the threads because they provide a place to share stories and take a moment of silence, like in the Gygax thread.

When the subject of the post is someone who has done things people don't like some people feel like they have to say something to that effect. However, that usually comes off as "hey, don't feel bad, he was actually a jerk." If you said that to someone in real life you'd probably get slugged.
posted by flatluigi at 1:20 PM on April 6, 2008


Smedleyman gone. Fallen, another shield in the bulwark 'gainst Chaos and old Night.
posted by adamdschneider at 1:23 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


You chased Smedleyman away, you damn dirty bastards. He was one of the best posters here.

Jesus fuck. Makes me want to join the NRA just to piss people off.

Come back, Smed. Please. I don't think I can take many more of my favorite MeFites hitting the button.
posted by languagehat at 1:24 PM on April 6, 2008 [5 favorites]


When hell is full the dead shall walk the earth.
posted by nola at 1:38 PM on April 6, 2008


As long as they get out of my way.
posted by jonmc at 1:42 PM on April 6, 2008


dirtynumbangelboy is back.

Yin and yang, alpha and omega, a time to reap, a time to sow, all that stuff.
posted by yhbc at 1:42 PM on April 6, 2008


Smedleyman is one of my favorite posters. I've always found his point of view fascinating and his arguments sound. I think it's his fault that I know about Smedley Butler and how after a distinguished career as a self-described "gangster for capitalism" he redeemed himself by writing a great, honest, prescient, and still relevant book, War is a Racket; he also prevented a coup in the United States.

Anyway, I appreciate his contributions to this site and am sad to see him go. I hope he comes back.
posted by vira at 1:59 PM on April 6, 2008


Please piss on each other wrt speaking ill of the dead vs pissing on graves vs pissing on loafers here.

thus proving someone gets dickhurt on the internet every time a celebrity dies.

protip: the dead don't really give a fuck what you say about them, because they are, in fact, dead.
posted by quarter waters and a bag of chips at 2:10 PM on April 6, 2008


[IMG: Charlton Heston's scowling head poking out of a hole in a ceiling upside down.]
posted by loquacious at 2:14 PM on April 6, 2008


Ceiling Heston is watching you damn dirty apes.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 2:26 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


I don't care about Heston.

Smedleyman, though - him being gone makes a difference, and not a good one.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 2:30 PM on April 6, 2008


My husband is right this minute at a gun show. Doing voter registration. And yes, he's a member of the NRA.

Just how many minority positions do I have to fill around here????
posted by konolia at 2:33 PM on April 6, 2008 [6 favorites]


Look, pissing on the dead is what MetaFilter does when someone dies. The more, umm, controversial the credentials of the deceased, the higher the arc of the piss. The fact that MeFi would open a communal urinal over the open grave of a past president of the NRA, given the leanings of the membership here, should in no way come as a surprise.

I mean, even when Gary Gygax died, there were a couple of "I heard he was kind of an ass" posts, and it's hard to imagine someone less objectionable and with a more positive effect on your average MeFi member. Mister Rogers was the exception, not the rule.

The fact is, if you're going to call for respect in obit threads, then you need to be prepared to not dance on future graves when, say, George W. Bush, Ann Coulter or Michael Moore dies. What do you think the odds of that happening on MeFi might be?

The measure of a man is his life, not his death. You do not gain respect in the public dialogue by simple virtue of having kicked the bucket, and other people's evaluation of the merits of a particular soul are likely to differ from yours. If you are unprepared to spend the day sticking air fresheners all over the obit thread for someone who is a particular hero of yours, please do your aching heart a favour and stay off the blue for the duration.

Having said all that, the mods should get an automated email alert every time a post is sent to the blue tagged with "obit" or "obituary" and any FPP obit with less than three links should be binned.
posted by DarlingBri at 2:35 PM on April 6, 2008 [7 favorites]


Dear Smedleyman: Why did you push the button? Seems like a bit of an overreaction for someone who is such a positive contributor, and who must know how obit threads can be among the ugliest. Why not just leave the thread and not return to it?

--confused in Cleveland
posted by found missing at 2:38 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


That's too bad that smedleyman pushed the button. Man, he was insightful and funny.
posted by slogger at 2:39 PM on April 6, 2008


Heston was a willing, nay eager, figure in the right wing scorched earth, split the nation twain, demonize liberals, campaign. That made him the enemy, and that's why I don't give a shit about what he did that may or may not have been laudable forty years ago.

How can a normal person remain calm when ignorant hysteria like that is being spouted? I mean, yeah, people are starving to death, someones mom was just killed in a car wreck, someone else just found they have only months to live so a obit post about a guy who had a good life is something one shouldn't get worked up over. But that level of ignorance (in the truest sense of the word) is kinda hard to take sitting down. Of course some people will let you call their own mama a bitch. Me I see red and all.
posted by dawson at 2:45 PM on April 6, 2008


Obviously this proves that Smed and DNAB are one and the same.
posted by jtron at 2:45 PM on April 6, 2008


Heston was a willing, nay eager, figure in the right wing scorched earth, split the nation twain, demonize liberals, campaign.
How can a normal person remain calm when ignorant hysteria like that is being spouted?


How is that ignorant? It seems spot-on accurate to me.
posted by grouse at 2:53 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


Maybe smed is just Not seen on metafilter for several days.

*hopes*
posted by languagehat at 2:55 PM on April 6, 2008


If you dumb motherfuckers drove off Smeds with your stupid squabbling over Charlton Heston of all people I'm going to be super ticked the fuck off. Jesus wept.


Smedleyman, come back. I'll let you borrow my Lee Enfield short magazine Mark III.
posted by Divine_Wino at 3:01 PM on April 6, 2008


Just how many minority positions do I have to fill around here????

Sorry, we're over quota.

any FPP obit with less than three links should be binned

What if they're three shitty links?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 3:04 PM on April 6, 2008


My husband is right this minute at a gun show. Doing voter registration.

There's actually a need for voter registration booths at gun shows? Like, a registration volunteer would come away from a gun show with a fair haul of previously unregistered voters?

I would've figured, given how politicized guns are in the US, that most of the attendees would be all gung-ho about their right to vote and exercising it. Except, I guess, the way-out-there anti-govt types.
posted by CKmtl at 3:04 PM on April 6, 2008


These are people who think that if you register something, the government has you on a list to take away the thing you registered.
posted by found missing at 3:12 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


If you lead a controversial life then expect controversial things to be said at your death. I dont see why this is so hard to understand. I'm not going to defend every statement in that thread but its not exactly his funeral with his family and friends present. Its just another anonymous webboard. We go through this each time and nothing changes. Dont like it? Dont click on the view comments link. Do you need to grieve? Dont do it on Metafilter or any public webboard.

What do some people expect to happen when Fred Phelps dies? Lots of "oh he was such a good family man" posts? Or how about when Tom Cruise kicks the bucket?

Guns are a highly politicized issue in the states. This is expected. Although Id love to see a policy where later, better FPPs were kept and an earlier ZOMG FIRST POSTs were deleted when its comes to sudden events like this.
posted by damn dirty ape at 3:16 PM on April 6, 2008 [3 favorites]


"Obviously we need to have threads where we trash the barely living, so as not to be offensive after they've passed. ..."
posted by papercake at 3:18 PM on April 6

I tried that. Worked out, pretty well, for the subject.

I could see it, particularly around here, becoming snarky VultureWatch, pretty easily. And then there's problem of getting an accurate death forecast for every obit worthy public figure, and the loonies that would bring out of the woodwork...
posted by paulsc at 3:18 PM on April 6, 2008


My husband is right this minute at a gun show. Doing voter registration. And yes, he's a member of the NRA. Just how many minority positions do I have to fill around here????

Since you clearly relish the positions, konolia, I'd say, just about as many as you want. And as new slots open up, I'm sure you'll keep us informed. On the other hand, it seems to be your husband that's filling this particular one. Perhaps he should cough up his 5 bucks and take this particular minority gig. I'm sure there'll still be other positions coming available for you.

And hey, c'mon back, Smedleyman!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 3:19 PM on April 6, 2008 [2 favorites]


And, uh, Smed? Get your keister back in the Blue pool.
posted by paulsc at 3:23 PM on April 6, 2008


This place is really disgusting sometimes. I'd leave but I don't have anywhere else to go.
posted by puke & cry at 3:23 PM on April 6, 2008 [4 favorites]


On the other hand, it seems to be your husband that's filling this particular one. Perhaps he should cough up his 5 bucks and take this particular minority gig

I look like Nancy Pelosi next to him. Be careful what you wish for.
posted by konolia at 3:24 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


Smedleyman posted *once* in the thread and in that post he compared people who criticize Heston to necrophiliacs. In a thread that had gone no further off the rails than any other obit. In fact, given the controversial nature of the deceased, this went a hell of a lot better than it could have. It doesn't make any sense to me unless all these people who think there's fresh piss on Heston's corpse hold him up us some kind of unassailable Jesus figure.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 3:27 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


To clarify, I understand the natural tendency to want to step back and contemplate this mortal coil and the fragile nature of human life as we respect someone's memory. I just find the backlash to be a bit surprising and I am having a hard time wrapping my head around it. What happened that so shocked a long time member that he had to cash in his chips? And why did he stick around so long if this kind of thread is so offensive?
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 3:33 PM on April 6, 2008


Has there been a lot of cleanup? Because that thread looks heated, but not that bad.
posted by klangklangston at 3:34 PM on April 6, 2008


What happened that so shocked a long time member that he had to cash in his chips?

Seriously. The scenery is getting pretty chewed up around here lately. Way too much wailing and gnashing of teeth - over not a whole heckuva lot.
Apt, in this case, I suppose.
posted by CunningLinguist at 3:42 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


Slarty Bartfast, you're quite willfully ignoring the context for Smedleyman's comparison. He quoted DecemberBoy and then made an analogy afterward, one that seemed to be an attempt to point out the gaping hole in the latter's argument. He admittedly didn't link or use December's name, but it seemed fairly obvious to anyone who had been following the thread. He was not comparing all of Heston's detractors with necrophiliacs but merely taking DecemberBoy's ridiculous defense and extrapolating from there. One might call it a "sidebar".

Furthermore, it's fairly ridiculous to state that desiring or seeking out respect for the dead and holding someone up as a messianic figure are in any way equivalent. If you'd like to discuss the issue intelligently, lay off all of the hyperbole.
posted by nonmerci at 3:42 PM on April 6, 2008


Last point--none of us know what was behind Smedleyman's decision, so why the useless speculating?
posted by nonmerci at 3:43 PM on April 6, 2008


Seriously. The scenery is getting pretty chewed up around here lately. Way too much wailing and gnashing of teeth - over not a whole heckuva lot.

For sure, which is why plenty end up coming back.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 3:45 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]




Ok, I just got caught up on the original thread. It's definitely off the rails at this point.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 3:50 PM on April 6, 2008


It was not obvious to me nonmerci. Looking back it still not obvious but I am pretty thick.

My observation is just that right *there* was a weird place to draw for Smedleyman to draw his line.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 3:54 PM on April 6, 2008


Fair enough. I read through the thread and and when I got to Smedleyman's comment knew immediately what he was referencing, but that could be because DecemberBoy's original comment stuck out at me as being rather ludicrous. Either way it would have been helpful for Smedleyman to make it as plain-as-day that he was indeed citing another member so that conclusions like your own weren't reached.

It is strange, as he didn't engage with anyone further in the thread, but regardless, maybe other factors are at play? Hard to tell at this point.
posted by nonmerci at 3:57 PM on April 6, 2008


What if they're three shitty links?

Three shitty links does not constitute best of the web, so bin it.

The fact that MeFi is not news filter has long been established. Therefore, races to make below-par FPPs should not be encouraged. Allowing them to stand does not deter anyone from making similar, crappy FPPs in the future, and in fact encourages it.
posted by DarlingBri at 3:58 PM on April 6, 2008 [2 favorites]


Well, while I hope Smedleyman returns because I like his contribution here, he chose to go. He wasn't forced or bullied away. And, he can chose to return, Heston on the other hand, is gone for good.
posted by Elmore at 3:59 PM on April 6, 2008


Just how many minority positions do I have to fill around here????

5.

Mainly, though, we just need a black Jew with dyslexia.
posted by sleepy pete at 4:22 PM on April 6, 2008


I don't know. When was it that we just rolled over and accepted that obit threads are something that belongs on Metafilter?
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 4:32 PM on April 6, 2008


It was about the time that the use of the dot became institutionalized.
posted by found missing at 4:35 PM on April 6, 2008


Aw, Smedleyman, come back!
posted by Quietgal at 4:36 PM on April 6, 2008


Fuck "."ism.
posted by Artw at 4:47 PM on April 6, 2008


DecemberBoy's original comment stuck out at me as being rather ludicrous

What was so "ludicrous" about it? I asked an honest question that I really wanted an answer to. I was polite and wanted to spark conversation. Instead, I got a bunch of ranting about necrophilia. I didn't even say anything bad about Heston, besides calling him a B-movie actor, which, a few fondly remembered Bible flicks aside, he was. What is it with this guy? I expected plenty of grave-pissing from a group of educated left-leaning people, instead he appears to be worshipped and anything less than total worship and adulation is blasphemy. Are some of you confusing him with the characters he played in the aforementioned Bible flicks?
posted by DecemberBoy at 4:52 PM on April 6, 2008 [3 favorites]


I didn't even say anything bad about Heston, besides calling him a B-movie actor, which, a few fondly remembered Bible flicks aside, he was.

As opposed to your boy Manson, huh, DecemberBoy?
posted by jonmc at 5:03 PM on April 6, 2008


I expected plenty of grave-pissing from a group of educated left-leaning people, instead he appears to be worshipped and anything less than total worship and adulation is blasphemy.

I think you may be confused. It seems as though you think that anything less than pissing in someone's grave is evidence of total worship and adulation. You are incorrect, sir.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 5:03 PM on April 6, 2008 [2 favorites]


I expected plenty of grave-pissing from a group of educated left-leaning people...

Tee hee.
posted by Krrrlson at 5:05 PM on April 6, 2008


No guys like Eric Roberts are b-movie actors. Heston's stuff is pretty good, especially considering that a lot of established actors would never have dirtied their hands with sci-fi or any movie that takes a chance. So, to each his own, but dismissing Heston as a bad actor seems unfair.

I see him as a figure who achieve success early on, got an oscar, became president of SAG and eventually got so sick of far-left issues and unions that he swung to the opposite far-flung right. Its somewhat tragic and you may disagree on the post MLK heston, but tossing in "Oh and he was a shitty actor" on top of that seems to be trollish.
posted by damn dirty ape at 5:07 PM on April 6, 2008


What is it with this guy?, indeed.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 5:07 PM on April 6, 2008


The latter is why you didn't see as much of the former as you were, bizarrely, hoping for.
posted by Cyrano at 5:07 PM on April 6, 2008


why the useless speculating?

What useless speculating? All I see is a bunch of people going "Shit, Smedleyman's gone. Come back, Smed!"
posted by languagehat at 5:17 PM on April 6, 2008


educated left-leaning people
Can educated people lean right, or maybe not even lean?

But to call Heston a B movie star is plain silly. I guess it would be like Tom Cruise dying and people snarking on him, but if they said he was a 'B movie actor' you'd figure the snarker was not very well educated on basic pop cultural standards.
Of course you may not like his acting, but he was no more a B movie star than Jimmy Stewart, Gary Cooper or Kathrine Hepburn were used car salespersons.
posted by dawson at 5:17 PM on April 6, 2008


Martian DecemberBoy: One does not speak ill of the dead because when one dies, one goes to the place where the dead go, and then you meet that person, and he has been longer there, and has many friends, and you are like the new kid in school, and all this time the dead person has been talking shit about you, and they have been looking at everything you do, and you are sure to have slipped at least once, and the dead person and all hid dead friends will mock you, and you will be all alone and sad with egg on your face and stuff. But if you say nice things about the dead, when you die and you meet them, you can be all like remmber me? i said nice things about you on metafilter, and they are like oh yes, i almost favorited that comment, but I was dead, why don't you come to this party and meet my friends, we will have a blast, and then you meet some cool people and have a blast.

Oh, and another reason not to speak ill of the dead, Martian DecemberBoy (how many months are there in mars? Do you have 2 lunar calendars) is that when people die, live people who like the dead people are feeling all sensitive and sad and cheated, and if you speak ill of the dead, they are not in their most rational state (the live people), and they can get all pissed at you and kick your ass. If you feel happy that someone just died, enjoy that warm fuzzy feeling, and a long time later, when someone you don't like says something you don't like, you can say something like hehehe you are the one who cried when heston died, hehehe, and you will feel like all smart and stuff.
posted by Dr. Curare at 5:21 PM on April 6, 2008 [5 favorites]


Obit threads are quite pointless, and almost always break the guidelines: they're hardly ever a link to something interesting on the web, just an opportunity to chat about some dead guy/girl.
So if the chatting is positive or negative, who gives a flying fuck? The FPP itself is not worthy of being posted. I propose automatic deletion of all obit threads, including the one under discussion.
posted by signal at 5:29 PM on April 6, 2008


Ickes to Penn: "[Expletive] you!"

Penn to Ickes: "[Expletive] you!"

Ickes to Penn: "[Expletive] you!"

heh.
posted by dawson at 5:32 PM on April 6, 2008


What Dr. C said.
You DO enjoy all this attention, however, don't you d-boy?
Does it make you feel important?
That is an honest question, and I really want an answer to it.
I'm just being polite to spark conversation.
posted by Dizzy at 5:33 PM on April 6, 2008


I expected plenty of grave-pissing from a group of educated left-leaning people...

That's a good way to fall into a grave.
posted by found missing at 5:41 PM on April 6, 2008


Who you callin' educated, smartass?
posted by jonmc at 5:45 PM on April 6, 2008


"Who you callin' educated, smartass?"

Clearly not you, so please go back to reorganizing your vinyl collection.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 5:49 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


*files vinyl thong under 't', vinyl bikini under 'b'*
posted by jonmc at 5:50 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


Really, it's much easier to file it all under 'v'.
posted by found missing at 5:52 PM on April 6, 2008


"The Jerk Store called, and they're out of YOU!"
posted by Dizzy at 6:05 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


The Charlton Heston post probably would have benefited from more context - certainly he was a controversial figure, but he was an iconic actor and a complicated person, and his politics don't render the story of his life irredeemable.

I feel that the problem with obitfilter posts in general, as others have pointed out, is the mad rush to be the FIRST of the web, rather than the best, which is not really what we ought to be doing here. I've noticed that posts about more obscure figures tend to be more interesting and better constructed because there isn't a clamor to be the first to slap it on the blue.

It's not a race. After all, it's not as if the person is going to stop being dead.

There should be a sentence before a period. That sentence should probably not be "There was this one guy and he died." Even if that person is very famous, even if they "need no introduction," we should be able to learn something about his or her life, and why that life is of interest.
posted by louche mustachio at 6:09 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


Oh, for the love of the fuck. Look, I posted two comments in that thread. Here they are, in full:

OK, I'm just going to say this, so please don't jump all over me, but: why is it when someone I didn't know personally and couldn't stand when they were alive dies I'm all of a sudden expected to say nice things about them? I have never understood this. This same thing happened when Jerry Falwell died, although he was a far, far more horrible human being than Heston. Heston was a B-movie actor whose actions as a political organizer later in life have caused untold harm. I'm not going to piss on his grave, but I'm not going to pretend I worshipped him either. It's distasteful.

But WHY? Why shouldn't we "speak ill of the dead" if the dead are assholes? I mean, there are people in this thread lauding The Omega Man and Airport 1975 and Return Of The Son Of The Illegitimate Daughter Of The Planet Of The Apes as good movies. That's just completely ridiculous. Pretend I'm a Martian and explain to me why people pretend to say nice things about someone who was widely despised yesterday. Because it's a social convention and we don't dare question it?

So again, pretend I'm a Martian and explain to me how these two innocuous, inoffensive comments in a thread where many people said much worse things about Heston amount to dressing in a clown suit and raping his corpse while shouting death metal lyrics and then personally going to all of your houses and raping your pets. You might note that, again, I did not even say anything particularly insulting about Heston and simply commented on what I saw as disingenuous (come on, you don't REALLY think The Omega Man was a masterpiece, do you?) beatification of a man who dedicated the latter part of his life to a harmful cause, simply because he died.
posted by DecemberBoy at 6:14 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


I may so use Ida Amin as a sock puppet to answer embarrassing anon q's, only you will know!
posted by dawson at 6:14 PM on April 6, 2008


DB, You're a Martian, you wouldn't understand.
posted by dawson at 6:19 PM on April 6, 2008 [2 favorites]


But WHY? Why shouldn't we "speak ill of the dead" if the dead are assholes?

Honestly, this is a perfectly reasonable question, and while in the middle of someone's Dead Thread may not have been the best place to ask it, I haven't seen anyone attempt to answer.

I'd have a go myself except "James Brown is dead? Yay!" was mine.
posted by DarlingBri at 6:20 PM on April 6, 2008


dawson I'm curious as to why you think my post, in particular, was nasty and ignorant. Heston *was* a major player in the game of activly demonizing liberals, look at his speeches during his time as NRA president. Its true that he was, generally, a bit more eloquent than Limbaugh, but that doesn't change the fact that he was busy spreading the lie that liberal == evil commie who hates guns and gun owners.

In fact, reviewing my comments, I didn't even say anything particularly personally insulting about him. I said I considered him to be part of the enemy, that I felt he and his were damaging America with their scorched earth tactics, and that I was of the opinion that this was sufficiently significant that the fact that 40 years ago he might, maybe, have been a decent human being was irrelivant.

I didn't say I was glad he was dead, or that I wanted to piss on his grave, or anything else that would seem to merit the horror you've expressed at my posts. What am I missing?
posted by sotonohito at 6:33 PM on April 6, 2008


Give him some time to chill, and then I believe there's a gun that needs some prying.
posted by Schlimmbesserung at 6:54 AM on April 6 [154 favorites -] [!]


I so thought about saying that, but decided it wasn't appropriate for an obit post, even in this case.
posted by cerebus19 at 6:56 AM on April 6 [2 favorites +] [!]

posted by matteo at 6:34 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


But seriously DecemberBoy, just to choose one of your posits that you post as de jure truths, you state:
beatification of a man who dedicated the latter part of his life to a harmful cause
I don't think anyone is seeking beatification at this juncture, just respect. But I would like to know what 'harmful cause' he 'dedicated his life' too and how you know it was a harmful cause and that he dedicated his life to it?
I'm a longtime NRA member and I don't think of myself as contributing to a 'harmful cause'. What about Pink Pistols which I also support (they will bust a cap in yr ass...literally)? But again, about Heston, not me...and why do you fixate on only his 'religious' movies and delegate him to 'B" status? And this 'harmful'. 'cause'.

But WHY? Why shouldn't we "speak ill of the dead" if the dead are assholes?

Try here, here here and here for starters
posted by dawson at 6:35 PM on April 6, 2008


speaking of prying, rigor mortis essentially disappears less than 24 hours after death, so someone's clearly need to hurry.
posted by matteo at 6:37 PM on April 6, 2008


So again, pretend I'm a Martian and explain to me how these two innocuous, inoffensive comments in a thread where many people said much worse things about Heston amount to dressing in a clown suit and raping his corpse while shouting death metal lyrics and then personally going to all of your houses and raping your pets.

but i thought that's what martians did
posted by pyramid termite at 6:38 PM on April 6, 2008


but i thought that's what martians did

No, Martians find some poor slob out in the hils and probe his butt. Look, you antannaed fuckos, life is rough out there in the hills and there's nothing in Billy Joe's ass you wanna know about. Leave him alone already.
posted by jonmc at 6:48 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


No, Martians find some poor slob out in the hils and probe his butt.

no, they don't because we got guns to stop them and we're gonna shove them right up their butts until they're chewing iron
posted by pyramid termite at 6:52 PM on April 6, 2008


Say what you will about Charlton Heston, but personally I'm reviewing the age and health status of celebrities and collecting ironically poignant ASCII art in order to exponentially increase my "favorite" count when the time comes.
posted by Tube at 6:55 PM on April 6, 2008 [2 favorites]


DecemberBoy: "So again, pretend I'm a Martian and explain to me how these two innocuous, inoffensive comments in a thread where many people said much worse things about Heston amount to dressing in a clown suit and raping his corpse while shouting death metal lyrics and then personally going to all of your houses and raping your pets. You might note that, again, I did not even say anything particularly insulting about Heston and simply commented on what I saw as disingenuous (come on, you don't REALLY think The Omega Man was a masterpiece, do you?) beatification of a man who dedicated the latter part of his life to a harmful cause, simply because he died."

We do it because we're (in general) sensitive to people around us who may be hurting. We do it because it brings home to us the frailty of life (there but for the grace of god go I etc). Mostly, though, we do it because we do it. It's expected behaviour in a civilised society. If you don't want to do it, then don't, but don't act surprised when some are offended.

These comments reminded me of a conversation I had the day after watching an acquaintance die a sudden violent death. As flowers were being laid on the spot where he died and people were talking about what a cool guy he was, someone commented that he was, actually, an arsehole and his dying didn't change that. My response was "he sure was an arsehole, but he was our arsehole and we miss him".
posted by dg at 6:59 PM on April 6, 2008 [3 favorites]


but i thought that's what martians did

All except for the death metal bit. We generally prefer Spandau Ballet and 1970s Swedish dansebands such as Gert Jonnys.

No, Martians find some poor slob out in the hils and probe his butt.

Ohfer... listen, I swear, that was just this one guy who was really into asses. He was removed from the Exploration/Abduction Force years ago under the "don't ask, don't tell, don't probe" policy.
posted by DecemberBoy at 7:01 PM on April 6, 2008


sotonohito
You say, for one example:
I'm scared. I'm not merely scared, I'm outright terified, and terror brings anger. The forces of good seem to be losing on every front to a horde of theocrats, homobigots, racists, and economic aristocracy. Americans seem infinately willing to fuck themselves over economically as long as they can bash queers and deny evolution.

Now I don't want to parse everything you've said, but you've also talked about 'enemy' and 'war' and so forth. I grew up with 'the enemy' being the communists (and how harmless they seem now..but not then, and not to the tens of millions they killed) and I just don't think in terms of calling people on a different political/ideological spectrum than I am as 'evil' and myself as in a war with them. I am not terrified, or even 'ascared'. I don't hate on anyone really. So I can't, frankly, wrap my mind around how I might interact with someone like you in real life. I mean I have all kinds of friends, including actual communists, but you paint with a broader brush than W. I guess I can appreciate your ability to see everything so black and white that Chuck Heston is your evil enemy, but I can't empathize. It just really boggles my mind.
posted by dawson at 7:03 PM on April 6, 2008 [2 favorites]


We do it because we're (in general) sensitive to people around us who may be hurting.

Are people really "hurting" over the death of Charlton Heston, other than his friends and family? He was a celebrity, not your family. I mean, I understand why you wouldn't make "cold dead hands" cracks to his family members. I can even understand why people would be "hurting" to some degree over the death of someone like Mr. Rogers, who was universally loved and did nothing but good and had a positive influence on many people's lives. But Heston? He was in some movies many people enjoyed, and after that became a divisive and widely disliked political organizer. How could the loss of Heston possibly affect you personally? It's like, I'm a huge Ramones fan and totally idolize them, but I can't say I was "hurting" when Joey, Johnny and Dee Dee died. It was sad, but I didn't know them personally or really anything about them outside of their public personas and their music.

If there are people here who were actually personally distraught over Heston's death, then I apologize if anything I said offended you, although again, I hardly said anything insulting. I have a hard time comprehending how someone could be personally distraught over the death of a public figure they don't even know.
posted by DecemberBoy at 7:20 PM on April 6, 2008


I have a hard time comprehending how someone could be personally distraught over the death of a public figure they don't even know.

I kind of agree with you n this in that I hate it when people get all 'he meant so muuch to me,' about somebody they didn't know, but at the same time, I figure my objections about anybody but the worst of people (and heston while not without his faults, was far from the worst) can wait for another time. call it maturity.
posted by jonmc at 7:29 PM on April 6, 2008


In the case of a public figure, I agree and am often puzzled by the depth of sorrow expressed by some people. I have always put it down to a flaw in my character that I am pretty much unmoved by deaths of people I have never met, so maybe it's a "flaw" we share.

I guess I trimmed more of your comment than I intended and I wasn't really addressing your question at a level specific to that part of your comment, but was more answering in general terms. I agree that you didn't say anything insulting that I could see and don't really get what all the fuss is about. Perhaps it's worth keeping in mind, though, that your comments here are more like publishing your thoughts in the local newspaper than a private conversation? You can't control who hears your voice here.
posted by dg at 7:37 PM on April 6, 2008


I just don't think in terms of calling people on a different political/ideological spectrum than I am as 'evil' and myself as in a war with them.

i don't see it either - frankly, it's getting tiresome to hear that sort of rhetoric because all it generally means is that the people who say it are just going to continue to squabble whether it accomplishes anything or not

the real problem with the charlton heston thread is that many of the people commenting in that thread know little else about him but that michael moore indulged in grandstanding sophistry at his expense and made him look "bad" because he's "insensitive" and didn't know the answer to a question that michael moore didn't know the answer to, either

why does america have such a bad problem with gun violence? well, mr moore, it's not because of gun laws, it's not because of ethnicity, it's not because of banks, or tv, or the nra, or charlton heston, or welfare to work laws, or satanic metal, or pilgrims, or a violent history, it's because many of our fellow citizens are too clueless and stupid to vote, keep a gun, raise children or settle disputes without fucking it up

but i don't suppose the president of the nra, or a populist documentary maker or a politician are going to satisfy their followers by saying something like that
posted by pyramid termite at 7:38 PM on April 6, 2008


Alas, some see it as rather hip to put the boot in after one's passing. Some even want to rub it in, all the time yelling "it don't hurt me, so how can it hurt you?".

DecemberBoy: "I have a hard time comprehending how someone could be personally distraught over the death of a public figure they don't even know."

As if somebody who brought you great joy with their life cannot also bring great sadness with their death? Shades of the Heath Ledger arguments all over again. A myriad of mechanisms exist which tie us to public figures, at different levels of empathy. Perhaps just accept that while you remain unscathed by your idols dying, it does bring some people sadness, so move on sans snark?

That's nothing new nor unique about this cocksmithery to either MeFi or society. Heston would not be shocked at its emergence in his obit. He brought much controversy onto himself in life, which tends to attract the rabid from all directions.

It's certainly in poor taste, but that poor taste is on display now for all to see, and allows us think less of those that chose to record it above their names.
posted by cosmonik at 7:40 PM on April 6, 2008


And as Smedleyman said, before his tragic self-disabling:

The man is not the issue. Nor is the issue the man.
posted by cosmonik at 7:45 PM on April 6, 2008


The fact that MeFi is not news filter has long been established.

Oh, don't we wish...
posted by LarryC at 7:47 PM on April 6, 2008


So are obit threads a place for 342 mefites to mark the passing of a public figure with a "." or a place to discuss the life and death of said pasee? Because I'm pretty sure we discuss everything in infinite detail on MetaFilter, and I don't think the expectation that obits will be any different is a reasonable one.

And cosmonik, that swings both ways. To a number of people, James Brown was the godfather of soul; to me, he was a habitual abuser. I was irked to see comments from people saying he probably wasn't like that when he wasn't off his head; I'm sure these people were just as pissed off to see my hope that he rot.

Metafilter is not a winning venue for uncritical piety, and I prefer it that way. That said, I am also not an idiot, and I will not be reading the blue on the day Sandra Day O'Connor dies.
posted by DarlingBri at 8:04 PM on April 6, 2008


To a number of people, James Brown was the godfather of soul; to me, he was a habitual abuser.

Elvis presley was a pathetic drug addict and he was the King Of Rock & roll. Life's complicated like that. Take your holier-than-thou posturing elsewhere, please.
posted by jonmc at 8:08 PM on April 6, 2008


By which I mean that without flawed humans there is no art, no worthwile art anyway. If I were to remove everybody from my music library who someone could find some moral objection to, I wouldn't have much left, and what was left wouldn't have much relevance to day to day life. Somebody said that we should always temper judgement with mercy, if I'm going to ask the same, I ought to provide the same.
posted by jonmc at 8:16 PM on April 6, 2008 [3 favorites]


Elvis presley was a pathetic drug addict and he was the King Of Rock & roll.

jerry lee lewis is laughing at that
posted by pyramid termite at 8:17 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


jonmc: I took DarlingBri to mean habitual abuser of women, rather than of narcotics or alcohol. Not sure how you took it, or if that makes a difference, but anyhoo.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 8:20 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


Wow...it's like all of the crap that was backed up over Saturday came gushing out now. I'm all for killing obit filter now...in fact, mod the hell out of this place from here on out, please.
posted by Burhanistan at 8:20 PM on April 6, 2008


People keep saying that we shouldn't speak ill of the dead, and yet, it still happens constantly. Maybe we should just stop deluding ourselves into thinking this is some sort of polite community or something.
posted by Dave Faris at 8:23 PM on April 6, 2008


jerry lee lewis is laughing at that

which part, the drugs or the king of rock and roll?

jonmc: I took DarlingBri to mean habitual abuser of women, rather than of narcotics or alcohol. Not sure how you took it, or if that makes a difference, but anyhoo.

Thomas jefferson owned slaves and probably fathered children with them. Martin Luther King was probably an adulterer. Miles Davis was a junkie and a wifebeater. Phil Spector is a psycho and probably a murderer. The list goes on and on..saints are few and far between and since when did sainthood become a prerequisite for enjoying music?
posted by jonmc at 8:24 PM on April 6, 2008


Fair point, DarlingBri, but I think jonmc counters with what I was going to say in my initial comment and left it out - that these issues are not black and white, that I, for one, don't have a strict 100% love or 100% hate for all people, and you may love the art but despise the artist.

As a mad fan of all survival horror I loved Omega Man, for example, but Chuck Heston as a person...not so much. So James Brown can be a great performer, and a terrible human being, all at the same time.

One may ask: when does one outweigh the other? You sem to have your mind made up re. James Brown, that his drug use outshines his musical output so you 'hope that he rot', but the threshold will change for each person. I expect some form of substance abuse in many of the artists I like, and as much as I hate the junkie in them, I can admire the rest. This goes for other qualities too - if I detested every band that expressed some form of racism, my Texan metal collection would be threadbare indeed.
posted by cosmonik at 8:27 PM on April 6, 2008


This is just my inner cranky-age-ist speaking, but I'd bet ducks to dough-nuts that the Heston-haters are mostly about 18 or so.
I'd like a word with their parents.
posted by Dizzy at 8:33 PM on April 6, 2008


which part, the drugs or the king of rock and roll?

the king of rock and roll part, of course
posted by pyramid termite at 8:34 PM on April 6, 2008


Dizzy, I'll bet you duck nuts to dough that you're right. What's with these dumb kids taking out their misguided malaise on yesterday's celebrities? They need to place the blame squarely where it belongs. Themselves, of course.
posted by Burhanistan at 8:36 PM on April 6, 2008


Dots are for the lazy people that want to express a certain level of respect for the deceased, and have the main benefit of not pissing anyone off. Any other comment in an obit thread, be it a favorable comment about somebody everyone hates or a hateful comment about somebody everyone loves, is guaranteed to piss somebody off.

Then some respected member quits and it gets called out on MeTa and the whole thing goes to hell faster than the deceased.

So yes, dots are lazy and innocuous, but that is exactly what makes them such a useful device on Metafilter.
posted by Mr.Encyclopedia at 8:36 PM on April 6, 2008


I don't give a hoot about his drug abuse. I care a great deal about his habit of beating women.

So yes, we're all going to have different lines. Sainthood is not a prerequisite for enjoying music or the Declaration of Independence or integration or anything else. That doesn't mean that when you die, we should only bewail your good points and ignore the full picture of your life. Public figures are exactly that - public, and falling under public scrutiny.

Metafilter has never been a place where "If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say it" applies, and I just think that people with an expectation that that is suddenly going to come into play in obit threads are going to be saddened and disappointed every time.

But I've made my point several ways several times now, so I don't think I can add anything new and clearly, we're going to remain just as divided in this conversation as we were in that thread.

Not that I posted in it.
posted by DarlingBri at 8:36 PM on April 6, 2008


Public figures are exactly that - public, and falling under public scrutiny.


Why is that considered axiomatic? Just because someone does something notable in one field of activity doesn't mean that they are supposed to fit the ideal in all other fields. You're falling victim to the celebrity gossip cum serious journalism that has cropped up since the OJ trial and has really gone a long way towards stupefying every man woman and child either directly or indirectly. Just don't talk about celebrities outside of their work, unless you have real context. What the hell is wrong with you that you need to gossip about them all the time? Please die.
posted by Burhanistan at 8:40 PM on April 6, 2008


(speaking in general)
posted by Burhanistan at 8:41 PM on April 6, 2008


That doesn't mean that when you die, we should only bewail your good points and ignore the full picture of your life. Public figures are exactly that - public, and falling under public scrutiny.

Exactly. It dosen't mean that there should be a mad rush to piss on your grave either. I'm sure that anybody looking at my life under a microscope would be able to find numerous reasons to piss on my grave, too. If any of us look close enough at our own lives I imagine we'd come to the same conclusion, so maybe I'm not as inclined to cast stones. Maybe you don't live in a glass house, or maybe you just aren't aware you do.
posted by jonmc at 8:43 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


I'm all for dissecting and pissing.
But my problem with dissector-pissers is that they want to dissect and piss BEFORE I have a chance to process it myself.
And they're such attention-whores.
I'm all for a reasonable "cooling off" period between a person's death and the attendant dissection and subsequent pissing.
Premature D and P needs to stop ASAP, OK?
posted by Dizzy at 8:50 PM on April 6, 2008


Hickory Dickery Dank,
This cab has left the rank,
You can rage away,
but the snark will stay,
Hickory Dickery Dank!
posted by tellurian at 8:58 PM on April 6, 2008


posted by loquacious: [IMG: Charlton Heston's scowling head poking out of a hole in a ceiling upside down.]

As requested.

there you go
posted by Krrrlson at 9:03 PM on April 6, 2008 [4 favorites]


(credit: fandango_matt)
posted by Krrrlson at 9:04 PM on April 6, 2008


Obit Filters get more than their fair share stupid, flaming comments. But any subject on MeFi, no matter how seemingly innocuous, can become a stupid exchange of flaming.

Sometimes, visiting MeFi is like attending a cocktail party with thousands of intelligent and interesting people, some of whom will randomly piss your leg.
posted by Fuzzy Skinner at 9:13 PM on April 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


s that P n yr G n T, FS?
posted by Dizzy at 9:16 PM on April 6, 2008


Mr.Encyclopedia writes: So yes, dots are lazy and innocuous, but that is exactly what makes them such a useful device on Metafilter.

The least controversial post is the one you don't make.
posted by anifinder at 9:17 PM on April 6, 2008


since when did sainthood become a prerequisite for enjoying music?

Never, of course. Though I've often noticed that folks'll deride any artistic criticisms based upon an artist's personal life and in the next breath speak about how the art's merits are attributable to and were informed by that same life, I agree with what Orwell wrote about Dali.

But still, when did it become such a great sin to allow one's emotions or beliefs to influence the completely subjective opinions to which they are entitled to? DarlingBri, like you or I, is human and he has a human reaction. It's not as though we're entering entartete kunst territory or he's in a position to influence anyone's artistic consumption with his opinion*.

Mind you, that's not an endorsement of folks shitting in ObitFilter - if you don't have anything nice to say, you can at least take the time to express it in a way that doesn't disrespect the other commenters who may not share your point of view.
Is there room for warts and all in memorial threads? Yes, I believe so, and constructively done, it can make for much better posts.
Is there room for a steaming pile of crap? No, just as there isn't in any other type of FPP.

Life's complicated like that. Take your holier-than-thou posturing elsewhere, please... maybe I'm not as inclined to cast stones. Maybe you don't live in a glass house, or maybe you just aren't aware you do

Holier than thou posturing indeed.

*Unless he's on an arts funding board, in which case the James Brown National Memorial Monument people are in trouble.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 9:41 PM on April 6, 2008


I agree with Alvy. There's nothing particularly difficult about any of this. One can say that they disagree with someone's actions or beliefs without getting hysterical or attacking other commenters. One can be respectful and still voice dissent, one can comment about the life of a specific person and its influences, positive or negative, without trying to derail the thread into a debate on the larger issues or trying to impress the other kids with your irreverent, edgy one-liners. It's simple stuff, you damn dirty apes.
posted by taz at 10:53 PM on April 6, 2008 [3 favorites]


Not that I'm obsessed with it, but I have been giving this some thought. I can't say I'm for banning obit threads totally. Having multiple submissions and the mods choosing the best would create more work for them which I doubt they want. People being people, there will always be a few who piss in the thread. They will get more and more outrageous until somebody cries uncle or quits in disgust. They will get hysterical and attack other commenters. I've seen a few obit threads here that were kind and informative and therapeutic but if the person was involved in politics in any way, or ever did something sinful that was reveled (say, Roman Polanski) someone with an axe to grind or whatever will have to vomit in the thread. So the bottom line is this behavior isn't (apparently, as mods seem to be silently waiting for the fire to die out) going to stop. It will leave a bad taste in most mouths, be embarrassing and low brow, but there it is. I don't want the threads to go away and I don't want to stop reading them, and so it goes.
posted by dawson at 11:05 PM on April 6, 2008


If this is going to be an obit thread for Smedleyman, one of the admins should run all the comments in this thread through 's/\. /\.
/g'.
Except for mine, since that would break the regex.
Oh well.
Need some of that good ol' Smedleyman formatting.
posted by blasdelf at 11:18 PM on April 6, 2008


Smedleyman left because of the stupid comments of less than ~0.3% of metafilter's members (245 comments in the thread, 71,008 mefites)? Fuck that guy.

*ducks* Hey, he's still alive!
posted by mullingitover at 11:53 PM on April 6, 2008


How can a normal person remain calm when ignorant hysteria like that is being spouted? I mean, yeah, people are starving to death, someones mom was just killed in a car wreck, someone else just found they have only months to live so a obit post about a guy who had a good life is something one shouldn't get worked up over. But that level of ignorance (in the truest sense of the word) is kinda hard to take sitting down.

I can't tell whether this comment of Dawson's is supposed to be satirical or serious. Why would someone give a shit whether someone's assessment of an actors career led them to label them a B-movie actor? While Heston played a couple of big leading roles during his long career, his acting was so mannered and lacking in subtlety, I can see why somebody would characterize him that way, even if it isn't strictly true. He came off like a great big ham.

And all of this 'Oh noes, you have driven X away with your evil and unnecessary snark' is just so much bullshit. I'm pretty sure that people leave because they've got personal stuff going on that has nothing to do with this website. Pseudonymous people acting like dicks on the internet might be irritating, but it's hardly a major source of trauma. If you've got so little self control that you can't simply close the browser window, walk away and come back when you're less pissed off, then you've got issues.

In short: flag it and move on. You'll find it genuinely liberating, I promise.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 2:31 AM on April 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


Note to self:
If I ever need a therapist, and for some reason PeterMcD is a therapist, do not let him be my therapist.
posted by Dizzy at 4:33 AM on April 7, 2008


I got an email claiming to be from Smedleyman last night:

Tough finding someone to e-mail. Sorry for all the trouble. Had nothing to do with Heston (not that it's not irritating, but I'm not petty). Be back when I can. Right now circumstances a bit beyond my control.

I've never communicated with him directly before, but he sent it to my MeFi contact address, so I don't see any particular reason to doubt that it's him.
posted by Malor at 4:39 AM on April 7, 2008


pyramid termite Its hardly a black and white, ultrasimplistic, worldview. I call it "being aware of the world around me". There is a brand of conservativism that has little or nothing to do with what was traditionally labeled conservative, but is more defined as an opposition to an absolute evil which they label "liberal". Coulter and Limbaugh are, of course, the biggest cheerleaders of that form of conservativsm, but other groups, individuals, etc actively participate in the eleminationist rhetoric, the neverending demonization of "liberals" [1], etc.

Pre-Heston, the NRA was a group which advocated gun rights, hunter's rights, and so forth. Post-Heston the NRA became yet another branch in the "liburls are evil commiefaggots" brigade

Put down your copy of Planet of the Apes and go watch some of Heston's speeches as president of the NRA and you'll see what I mean. Many people are unaware of just how nasty the post-Heston NRA became, and still tend to think of it as just a little gun rights group. The post-Heston NRA is no longer particularly about gun rights. I doubt Heston was involved in planning or executing that change, but he did chose to become its public face.

I figure that when people work to classify me as an evil commiefaggot worthy only of death or expulsion from the USA they aren't my friends, and they aren't neutral towards me, which leaves only one other option: enemy.

Naturally, I never knew Heston personally. He wasn't talking about me *personally* when he talked about evil commiefaggots, but his rhetoric did add fuel to the growing, and from my POV incredibly dangerous, new conservative movement. He wasn't as bad as Coulter, Bush, or Limbaugh, but he was on their side, and he did use his position to advance their agenda.

I don't think any conspiricy is involved, but its foolish to ignore the fact that the various new conservative advocates do hetrodyne, and that the actions of Heston didn't help that process. Hell, the NRA (along with dozens of other right wing loony outfits) claimed credit for electing Bush. I doubt that's true, but the NRA, and Heston personally, did expend a lot of energy working against both Gore and Kerry.

dawson I'm still not seeing what you're so pissed at me about. I didn't make "cold dead hands" jokes, call Heston names, or even say that I'm glad he died. I said that after he made all those movies he turned into one of the advocates of an approach to politics that I don't like, and that frightens me. I also said that I didn't care what he did 40 years ago that might be thought of as socially good because I'm of the opinion that his later actions were damaging to society.

He didn't just advocate gun rights, if he had I'd have considered the work of his later life to be "meh" but very faintly positive. I like guns, though I consider the paranoid "ZOMG they want to take away your guns" line to be a bit pathetic. The gun rights angle to the NRA of Heston's time was, to a very large extent, secondary to its "smear all liberals" angle, and that's what I'm complaining about.

[1] In scare quotes because the "liberals" they so hate are apparently identified by nothing more or less than simply not being in lockstep with their agenda, and have squat to do with actual liberalism.
posted by sotonohito at 4:39 AM on April 7, 2008


piratebowling writes "Not only did they try to form a society for the prevention of planet of the apes, but a large portion of the paper was dedicated to pissing off the (majority) hippie population of that school."

Right. You do understand that the movie "Planet of the Apes" was based on the book, and the book was an allegory about race relations, colonialism and post-colonialism, right? And that "a society for the prevention of planet of the apes" sounds a bit like something David Duke would sponsor, or Lou Dobbs would praise, right?
posted by orthogonality at 5:15 AM on April 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


I see no problem with being honest in an obituary thread about whether or not you liked what someone contributed to society. It should be common knowledge now that threads on Metafilter about controversial people are not places people should go if they're only looking to grieve a loss. It's a discussion, not an obituary.

That said, excusing a level of snark that's not really allowable anywhere else isn't good either. I think the mods could do a little better job of babysitting people who feel the need to make useless comments that only serve to get people more riled up.

It shouldn't be necessary but it is.
posted by scabrous at 5:22 AM on April 7, 2008


For a while now, I've wanted to do a meta thread about Smedleyman.

Not only is he one of my favorite commenters, but his comments have come such a long way. His earliest comments are somewhat... telegraphic; you have to work a little harder to get his point, and to add the paragraph breaks he omitted. But those comments were worth the extra work it took to read them.

Over the last several years, the quality of his writing has improved, at times becoming almost lyrical. Well-written or no, he's invariably insightful in his comments, and his experience, as a veteran and as a resident of Chicago really informs his comments.

I hope he'll return here soon.
posted by orthogonality at 5:24 AM on April 7, 2008


I kind of agree with you n this in that I hate it when people get all 'he meant so muuch to me,' about somebody they didn't know, but at the same time, I figure my objections about anybody but the worst of people (and heston while not without his faults, was far from the worst) can wait for another time. call it maturity.
posted by jonmc at 3:29 AM on April 7 [+] [!]


Perhaps, but it's our duty to cut them down to size.......
posted by jonmc at 1:04 AM on January 23
posted by Reggie Knoble at 6:02 AM on April 7, 2008


I've never would have thought that death was a time to air a final word....on controversial things that should only be taken up with the living. I didn't agree with the man either while he was alive, but all I can say about the thread is, show a little respect...it's already full of terrible people.
posted by samsara at 6:08 AM on April 7, 2008


posted by jonmc at...

Yes, because people never change their minds or learn anything.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 6:38 AM on April 7, 2008


I'd bet ducks to dough-nuts that the Heston-haters are mostly about 18 or so.

Not all of them. Count me (40yo) in the crew that found him a toxic blight and wants to know why I shouldn't be allowed to say so, even at the risk of hurting Dawson's tender feelings.
posted by CunningLinguist at 6:50 AM on April 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


Right. You do understand that the movie "Planet of the Apes" was based on the book, and the book was an allegory about race relations, colonialism and post-colonialism, right? And that "a society for the prevention of planet of the apes" sounds a bit like something David Duke would sponsor, or Lou Dobbs would praise, right?

They just wanted money from their school so they could train a bear to fight kung fu and fight the apes that would ultimately enslave us. I had no idea their lighthearted plan to get some extra cash from their school, which didn't pan out, was in fact so evil at heart.
posted by piratebowling at 6:50 AM on April 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


Yes, because people never change their minds or learn anything

You have your opinion and I have mine, very recent comment history seems to me like an adequate way of assesing someone on their actions rather than their lofty claims.
posted by Reggie Knoble at 7:10 AM on April 7, 2008


I figure my objections about anybody but the worst of people (and heston while not without his faults, was far from the worst) can wait for another time. call it maturity.
posted by jonmc

Perhaps, but it's our duty to cut them down to size.......
posted by jonmc at 1:04 AM on January 23
posted by Reggie Knoble at 8:02 AM on April 7

Yes, because people never change their minds or learn anything.
posted by jessamyn


Yeah Reggie. You act as if maturity can't be achieved in 2 months. Silly boy.
posted by justgary at 7:26 AM on April 7, 2008


sotonohito, CunningLinguist , etc
please trust me, I am not angry and my feelings aren't hurt. This isn't about Heston. I tried to be clear, in both threads, that it's about anyone who dies. I think it drags the human spirit down to be gleeful about any death, including those of animals and insects. I guess if Al Gore died I could crack some jokes, but now is the time for that, not when he is dead. Apparently I have a minority opinion so it's OK. And PeterMcDermott, the point I was trying to make, using hyperbole, is that yeah, flag it and move on cause in the grand scheme does it really matter? But if I see the behavior as repulsive and if I'm a (new/tiny) part of the community I have ever right to point that out.
posted by dawson at 8:24 AM on April 7, 2008


I look forward to Smedleyman's triumphant return. Not only because I suspect that he and I have similar views on many subjects, but because he was one of the few posters here that I could accurately identify solely by his distinctive writing style.

Until you do come back, you will be missed, my friend.
posted by quin at 8:35 AM on April 7, 2008


Heston was a great performer. He was a shitty activist. He did a lot of wonderful things that I loved. He said a lot of stupid things that I hated. Some of you think the opposite for one or the other. We have the right to talk about both.

Now if you'll excuse me, some old black guy said something I didn't like.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 9:02 AM on April 7, 2008


I will sort of miss Smedleyman, too. Maybe we should create a thread in his honor, so that people can come by and pay their respects?
posted by Slap Factory at 9:20 AM on April 7, 2008


Hickory dickory diddle
What's round on both sides and high in the middle?

The answer is Ohio, because it has the letter "o" on each end, and also is full of stoners.
posted by Astro Zombie at 10:30 AM on April 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


From later comments in mail, it doesn't sound like Smedleyman will be back anytime soon, if at all. I won't repeat them, as it doesn't feel appropriate.

He does, however, say that it's okay to publish his email address:

smedleyman@gmail.com

So, if you want to reach him, that's how.
posted by Malor at 10:41 AM on April 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


Dear The Button,

If you give us back Smedleyman, we'll let you take back dnab and konolia.

Thanks,

The Smedleyfans
posted by shmegegge at 11:25 AM on April 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


Thanks for that, Malor. I just wrote him.
posted by languagehat at 11:41 AM on April 7, 2008


"it'd save so much time if we could just have a standardized "Mad Lib" type fill-in-the-blank template on hand to use for the MeTa post..."
posted by FelliniBlank at 4:04 PM on April 6 [+] [!]

Wow, this is just one small step from being a self-link.
posted by GrammarMoses at 12:21 PM on April 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


Dear The Button,
If you give us back Smedleyman, we'll let you take back dnab and konolia.
Thanks,
The Smedleyfans


P.S. Act now and we'll throw in shmegegge, at no extra charge, as our special gift to you.
posted by Atom Eyes at 12:42 PM on April 7, 2008


Tough finding someone to e-mail. Sorry for all the trouble. Had nothing to do with Heston (not that it's not irritating, but I'm not petty). Be back when I can. Right now circumstances a bit beyond my control.

So hey, does that mean I can come down off the cross now? You know, I could say that I was unfairly pilloried. I could say how hurtful, unfair, gross and wrong this whole thing was. I could even say that this really had nothing to do with Charlton Heston in the first place, rather that since one of my TOTALLY OUTRAGEOUS AND LUDICROUS two comments in a thread about him was the last thing Smedleyman replied to, obviously it was my fault he left. And it turns out his departure had nothing to do with Heston! Boy, don't you have egg on your face now, huh?

But I won't. Because that's MATURITY.
posted by DecemberBoy at 1:08 PM on April 7, 2008


Dear The Button,
If you give us back Smedleyman, we'll let you take back dnab and konolia.
Thanks,
The Smedleyfans



Uh, no one consulted ME.
posted by konolia at 2:30 PM on April 7, 2008


That thread got ugly. Not because of the tearing down of Heston. He knew he was a controversial figure. And the good he did the first fifty years of his life... I think he take a few insults

But the drive-by insults being thrown were pretty bad. MeFi 2nd Amendment supporters described as "climbing out of the ooze" and shit like that. WTF? C'mon now. That's some petty shit right there.


And. Smedlyman left?

God damn you people all to hell.

P.S. Act now and we'll throw in shmegegge, at no extra charge, as our special gift to you.

Ah. Nope. That's not going to win you any friends, bro. no offense but Schmegegge and Smed are the worth 50 of you. And maybe 17 of me.
posted by tkchrist at 2:39 PM on April 7, 2008


Yeah Reggie. You act as if maturity can't be achieved in 2 months. Silly boy.

A sign of maturity is giving people the benefit of the doubt. Or so I have heard.
posted by tkchrist at 2:40 PM on April 7, 2008


I thought the sign of maturity is that the crystal embedded in your hand turns black, and hen you go to Carousel.
posted by Astro Zombie at 3:23 PM on April 7, 2008 [2 favorites]


Dishing it
+
Taking it just as gleefully
=
Maturity
posted by Dizzy at 3:26 PM on April 7, 2008


So hey, does that mean I can come down off the cross now?

No! Jesus was innocent, too, and he had to stay up there. Now you're saying you're better than Jesus? Huh? Is that it?

Never mind.

posted by Fuzzy Skinner at 3:28 PM on April 7, 2008


I thought the sign of maturity is that the crystal embedded in your hand turns black, and hen you go to Carousel.

Renewal is hogwash. You're better off running to sanctuary.

Oh. Bring a coat. It's cold there.
posted by tkchrist at 3:30 PM on April 7, 2008


A sign of maturity is giving people the benefit of the doubt. Or so I have heard.

I'm all for giving the benefit of the doubt. That we shouldn't be held precisely accountable to our comment history when opinions can depend on our mood? Yep.

Believing that someone did a 180 in 2 months, not so much. You, however, are free to believe.
posted by justgary at 3:30 PM on April 7, 2008


It turns out that while I read much of this thread already, I never actually commented in it. So it hasn't been in my Recent Activity, and I pretty much forgot it existed.

shmegegge, I'm sad Smed's gone too, and I admire the heck out of your anthropomorphizing The Button as some sort of demigod to be bartered with, but baseball trades on other members is a little close to an aggrieved mother's "it should have been you!" bit for comfort.
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:56 PM on April 7, 2008


I have this great idea that nobody will pay attention to: users have until 12pm PST on the day following the death of a famous person to submit an ObitFilter entry for that person. The next morning, the powers-that-be select the best one, and that one is posted to the front page to kick off the discussion.

After all, once the person's dead, they're dead; it's not like something new is going to be added. This'll give people a reason to make each ObitFilter entry a well-researched FPP, render the frists pointless, and if it's not worth it to put in a well-researched entry, then the person wasn't famous enough for an FPP anyway.

All it takes is a "This is an ObitFilter entry" checkbox on the submission page, a bit of time and coordination from the powers-that-be, and a paper clip.
posted by davejay at 4:06 PM on April 7, 2008 [2 favorites]


the paper clip is to get the floppy disk out of the drive. wait, where am I?
posted by davejay at 4:07 PM on April 7, 2008


digital life cocks.
posted by sgt.serenity at 5:22 PM on April 7, 2008


Another thought would be to absolutely, positively delete all obit posts made within a week of the death, no matter how good they are.

If they're genuinely worth an obit post on MeFi, waiting a week should essentially be irrelevant, and it gives the rest of the Web time to dig up interesting material and memories that can be linked to. A Charlton Heston memorial post would be far more interesting given until next Sunday to bake, rather than just slapdashed off with zero thought.
posted by Malor at 7:54 PM on April 7, 2008


I'd like to see obit threads meet the same standards as other posts here, very much. I'm afraid that it would almost need a full-time obit-mod (ObMod) to enforce, though. (Even with tagbot post-frying - since people would just stop tagging their crappy posts as obits.) Usually we get good (often great) ones for the less-well-known luminaries, and total fail for anyone really famous. I just can't work out why anyone thinks being the first-and-worst to post an obit is such a desired thing.

Also, sorry Smedleyman's gone, like everyone else, but getting mighty weary of the whole OMG user-pushed-the-button!!!11!! thing. Why can't people just leave without pushing the apparently ever-so-seductive button, and drop a little note on their profile, saying "I'm leaving because, blah, blah, blah. Maybe I'll be back, maybe not. Eat my dust, losers." Or something. I know of a lot of people who leave, come back, leave again, etc., without any mention or button-pushing at all, and I'm appreciating that more and more.
posted by taz at 2:44 AM on April 8, 2008 [1 favorite]


Also, sorry Smedleyman's gone, like everyone else, but getting mighty weary of the whole OMG user-pushed-the-button!!!11!! thing.

When September rolls around, attention-whoring (and the down-drawn-brow suspicion of it) starts to throw a shadow over plainold conversation. So it goes.

Or, less wonderchicken-littley, like I said from the get-go, that button was a dumb idea if it doesn't mean GOODBYE FOREVER OLD FRIEND, because it's just another dramabomb factory otherwise. Keep it, sure, but if you use it, it means goodbye forfuckingever to that username and number, sorry, line on the left, one cross each.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 4:33 AM on April 8, 2008 [1 favorite]


getting mighty weary of the whole OMG user-pushed-the-button!!!11!! thing

Me too. I wish people would stop rewarding button-pushers for being dramatic and antisocial with the usual litany of "OMG COME BACK!" It's even worse when this is used as a convenient club to attack those seen to be "responsible" somehow. When someone decides to leave of their own accord, only that person is responsible.
posted by grouse at 5:17 AM on April 8, 2008


P.S. Act now and we'll throw in shmegegge, at no extra charge, as our special gift to you.

Yeah! ...

waitasecond...

shmegegge, I'm sad Smed's gone too, and I admire the heck out of your anthropomorphizing The Button as some sort of demigod to be bartered with, but baseball trades on other members is a little close to an aggrieved mother's "it should have been you!" bit for comfort.

it was just a joke. I was posting mostly because this was the first time I'd noticed that both dnab and konolia were back since they'd quit earlier, that coupled with smedley's departure seemed to be too interesting a confluence of events not to mention. I'd like to think that, if we were all together face to face, my tone of voice and facial expression would have made it clear that I was talking about the revolving door nature of the button rather than the merit of the individuals mentioned. Since we were not in real life when i said it, though, I hope I didn't offend anybody and I apologize to anyone who I may have offended.
posted by shmegegge at 10:05 AM on April 8, 2008


also, since we're on the topic of smed, I just want to point out that he and I got in a little bit of a tiff (though it was nothing compared to most Big Mefi Fights) over the cop thing and managed to come out of it gracefully and in a manner of some pretty satsifactory agreement mostly because of his gracious nature and open-mindedness. I saw with absolute seriousness that I wish he would come back.
posted by shmegegge at 10:08 AM on April 8, 2008


I say with absolute seriousness...
posted by shmegegge at 10:08 AM on April 8, 2008


it was just a joke.

Yeah, I know it was, and I thought the construction of the joke was funny but the decision to construct it around a couple of recent departure-returnees was nonetheless kind of an uncool one even if the uncoolness itself seemed more a harmless misstep than anything else. Which is why I said what I said, instead of calling you a fucknozzle or something. It just seemed like a poor play, ultimately, in the way that it read if not the way it was intended.

and I apologize

Aw, heck, hugs.
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:14 AM on April 8, 2008


fuck that shit. all hugs go in the sansgras thread. WE'RE RUNNING OUT OF TIME, PEOPLE.
posted by shmegegge at 10:20 AM on April 8, 2008


Eat my dust, losers!
posted by deborah at 12:41 PM on April 8, 2008


I'm back!
posted by deborah at 12:42 PM on April 8, 2008


Turns out that a good hot shower is an effective treatment for dust losers. It works even better than a brisk rogering.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 6:51 AM on April 9, 2008


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