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Posts will be a bit light for a few days

What? I'll stand here if I want.
What? I’ll stand here if I want.

Hey, folks. I’m taking care of some non-blog business (nothing bad), so posts will likely be a bit light for a few days, and moderation will be a bit slow. But please keep sending tips!

In the meantime, here’s a cat. I posted this one before but, come on, this is an excellent cat who deserves some more publicity.

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Sinkable John : Pansy Ass Pinko
Sinkable John : Pansy Ass Pinko
5 years ago

@EJ

Sadly I don’t think a single recording survived since then 🙁
Might be for the best, they weren’t that great anyway. Now I’m moving on to other kinds of music and actually writing my own lyrics, and my voice has fully matured, so the half-assed garage blues and punk from my preteen-teen years is probably best left in the past.

Also, just one small thing, is it “go to *the* Auvergne” ? I always thought it was just “go to Auvergne” by the english standard.

It’s not a club though ! It’s really “just” a concert hall, albeit in a squatted building. And it really is awesome. There’s a cool thing going on with the general benevolence there. People watch out for you, among other things.
Last time I went I was super tired because I’d been up for around 40 hours, and what with the beer and weed I started dozing off and waking up repeatedly. This awesome gal woke me up once to check that I wasn’t slipping into a coma, and when I said no she just sat next to me and made sure no one else woke me up again for the same reason. Even got me a few beers sitting right in front of me for those moments I’d wake up.
That’s the kind of attitude towards others that seriously lacks in the more usual party settings – at music festivals I tend to always look out for the younger ones, for example. Always got the “first-aid kit” on hand – that includes a lot of water, food, coffee, stuff people may need in case of over-intoxication. Since I don’t sleep I keep my tent open for them to sleep in if necessary. But then I see a number of assholes who’d rather take advantage of vulnerable drunk teenagers… the Raymond is awesome in that it doesn’t have that. People watch out.

@Alan

A prerequisite indeed. Can’t have a good night if you can’t sit down when you need to. ’tis why I avoid the more “regular” settings like clubs and such. Plus alcohol, drugs and standing up are the worst mix as soon as you start getting just a little bit tired – and you can’t go until 6am if you can’t rest a bit.

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
5 years ago

@ sinkable john

tis why I avoid the more “regular” settings like clubs and such.

When I lived in London we used to hire an old Russian sub and use that for parties. It was great (until the tide went out, then it just fell over). The best thing about it was you could always find somewhere to crash back in the engine rooms.

(It actually had beds in the officers’ bit but I can only assume no submariner is over four feet tall)

Sinkable John : Pansy Ass Pinko
Sinkable John : Pansy Ass Pinko
5 years ago

This is the single most amazing thing I’ve ever heard of. Them acoustics must’ve been interesting too.

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
5 years ago

@ sinkable john

The acoustics are very weird. It’s like the most ‘dead’ space you can imagine (no reverb whatsoever). We used to have the dancey bit in the old battery compartment. That was the biggest open space. The weird thing is that even though we put a fairly big PA in there, if you went a couple of compartments back, you couldn’t hear a thing, even with all the hatches open. Joeb can probably explain the science behind that (unless of course it is actually magic).

The other great thing is that there’s no ambient light down there at all so you could just dance in total darkness apart from a few LEDs on the gear.

This is the magnificent lady* in question. Thank you ma’am for many nights of fun!

comment image

(* I think Russians use masculine pronouns for submarines)

Kat
Kat
5 years ago

@Alan

When I lived in London we used to hire an old Russian sub and use that for parties.

I’m stunned!

What’s a Russian sub doing off the coast of England?

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
5 years ago

@ Kat

What’s a Russian sub doing off the coast of England?

Dropping to bits mainly; although it was actually on the Thames.

A guy just bought it from the Russian Navy (he actually bought two but one sank, which is ironic). He said they were really cheap, like “Here’s a few thousand dollar US to look the other way” cheap. Then he just charged people to look around it. It was very interesting just in its own right, but we asked if we could hire it and he said yes.

ETA: One very interesting thing is that it came with an old (disarmed) torpedo. It was a Russian torpedo but all the markings were in English because someone had stolen the dies back in the Cold War.

EJ (The Other One)
5 years ago

Surely the virtue of a submarine is that it can sink without being harmed? Isn’t that what they’re for?

Kat
Kat
5 years ago

Wow!

And I can see that it’s all rusty. I wouldn’t want to travel in it, but it would be fun to party in.

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
5 years ago

@ EJ

Surely the virtue of a submarine is that it can sink without being harmed? Isn’t that what they’re for?

Yeah, but generally “and come back up again” is an essential part of the equation; a feature the other one sadly lacked.

ETA: Semantic query; when does it stop being ‘coast’ and start being ‘river bank’?

Sinkable John : Pansy Ass Pinko
Sinkable John : Pansy Ass Pinko
5 years ago

I think Russians use masculine pronouns for submarines

I’m totally in favor of that if it means they can name a submarine Ivan.

(GET IT !?)

(yes, this is my cryptic bad puns week)

Kat
Kat
5 years ago

@Alan, @EJ

Surely the virtue of a submarine is that it can sink without being harmed? Isn’t that what they’re for?

Yeah, but generally “and come back up again” is an essential part of the equation; a feature the other one sadly lacked.

Hmm. Coming back up again does sound important.

(You made me laugh.)

Mish of the Catlady Ascendancy
Mish of the Catlady Ascendancy
5 years ago

Ermergerd, that submarine! Alan “Best Anecdotes” Robertshaw outdoes himself 😀

I’ve also been missing Katz. When I first de-lurked here, she was consistently kind and gracious to me, plus I love her comments.

Seeing as this is kind of an OT thread in general, I have a question that perhaps some of you could help with. I currently have a student with severe OCD and this last week it’s been really affecting him, to the point that he’s raging, crying, and shouting over things that up to now he’s been able to handle, even if he didn’t like them. Yesterday he noticed that there was a minor discrepancy in the marking criteria for an assignment, and for him it was the end of the world (I’m not being sarcastic or nasty in saying that – it destroyed him).

He has support, obviously, at home, and from professionals. But my question is, how can I best help him as his teacher when he is in these moments of intense frustration? Be calm, take him seriously, of course – but does anyone know of specific strategies that might help?

Please don’t feel obligated, ok? I’ve asked the powers that be at uni for more help, but I also thought of asking here, as many of you seem to be familiar with OCD. Depression and bipolar are my personal demons, so I feel like I’m flailing around when it comes to this area.

Mish of the Catlady Ascendancy
Mish of the Catlady Ascendancy
5 years ago

Forgot to add,

@ cleverforagirl
Kimchi has THE most gorgeous little face in the universe. I remember when you posted his first pic. Kudos to you for what you’ve done (plus, I never make my bed, so no need to worry)

@ Victorious Parasol, best warm wishes to you.

Axecalibur: Middle Name Danger
Axecalibur: Middle Name Danger
5 years ago

@EJ

I have promised myself that if I go to a town where burkinis are banned, I shall wear one

Burkas, hijabs, burkinis, let’s go. Freeedooom!!! Besides, and at the risk of some insensitivity, burkinis are fuckin cute! Has anyone ever not looked adorable in one of those? I could probably pull it off…

Oh, and apparently, half the people who wear burkinis aren’t even Muslim. Also, Thierry Migoule should be made to wear a swimsuit made of legos!

Sinkable John : Pansy Ass Pinko
Sinkable John : Pansy Ass Pinko
5 years ago

@Mish of the Catlady Ascendancy

Take this with a large bag of salt because I’m only speaking from experience.

I have slight, irregularly recurring OCD but your student’s situation is obviously on a scale that I can’t comprehend, so I wouldn’t know about managing that. But from what I understand of mental illness in general – again, from personal experience with depression, insomnia, OCD, so I may be missing the point entirely in your student’s case – external factors often play a much larger role than is attributed to them. People with mental disorders are expected to work on themselves and their own brains but little to no attention is paid to “mundane” causes for grief (that is, stuff not related to mental illness) that could very well be aggravating the situation.

That could be just about anything, stuff that you as a teacher aren’t supposed to look into or offer support with – if so, then there really is nothing you can do except show a general supportive attitude.
Or it could be student stress – in which case you could recommend he takes a break, get some rest. I don’t know the specifics so maybe that’s not a good thing to do if he ends up being late on work though.

Or it could be nothing at all, “just” OCD with no outside catalyst. In which case I don’t know.

I’m gonna leave this out here to illustrate my point : last year I went into full-blown depression because of choking loneliness. They “treated” me by putting me in a closed hospital for a whole month, with barred windows and locked doors everywhere, and enough Tercian in my system to make it impossible to even keep busy since my brain just couldn’t turn on. That’s like treating a stab wound with painkillers and more stabbing. This is what happens when outside factors are dismissed, or when people are told to “tough it up”.

Sinkable John : Pansy Ass Pinko
Sinkable John : Pansy Ass Pinko
5 years ago

ETA : oh yeah and Mr Psychiatrist McStupidpants completely dismissed my insomnia, said it was caused by my use of cannabis. It never occurred to him that smoking to put myself to sleep might just be how I deal with insomnia in the first place, not the cause of it.

As a result of his fucking around my brain with seriously inappropriate drugs, my insomnia got fucking worse.
As a result of his fucking around my personal life with assumptions and police calls, it is now pretty much impossible for me to find access to cannabis in my city, as the cops have an eye on me. So there goes my only respite. Hello, beer. My alcohol intake has more than tripled in the last year, and it was already bad before.

So it’s also not a good idea to make assumptions based on “lifestyle” things, particularly when doing so from a moral high ground based on “it’s bad, mkay ?”. Could be your student had some sort of personal coping mechanism, that he either clearly identified it as such or didn’t, and that said mechanism, whatever it is, is now gone, for whatever reason.

ETA again : okay, this escalated quickly. Sorry this turned into a personal rant more than actual advice.

Kat
Kat
5 years ago

@Mish

I’ve also been missing Katz. When I first de-lurked here, she was consistently kind and gracious to me, plus I love her comments.

Yes, same here.

Yesterday he noticed that there was a minor discrepancy in the marking criteria for an assignment, and for him it was the end of the world (I’m not being sarcastic or nasty in saying that – it destroyed him).

My experience isn’t as extreme as your student’s. But here is what helps me: (1) calm, steadfast acceptance of my fear, and (2) calm, steadfast reassurance that my fear is outsize.

This turns off “the thing” for me — or at least a good part of it. Out of deference to the fear(!), I might hesitate to show it, but I am calmer.

It’s actually quite unusual for anyone to exhibit numbers 1 and 2. I mostly have to do it for myself.

If you try this technique, I’d love to hear how it goes.

@Sinkable John
Damn, that’s tough.

kupo
kupo
5 years ago

@Sinkable John
Your shrink sounds like an idiot. I’m sorry you’re going through that. Alcohol is likely to make your insomnia worse, though. It might help you initially fall asleep but then you’re likely to wake up again a few hours later. Personally I’ve found mental health professionals to be shit at helping with insomnia, but primary care physicians have been good at finding prescriptions that actually helped me. So maybe give that a try?

@Mish
I immediately thought the student probably had something else going on, too. I don’t have OCD, but as a kid stuff like grading discrepancies could cause a melt down in me. I had a lot of anxiety and grades were extremely important to me because I didn’t have any friends so bring smart was the one thing I felt I could be happy about my personality, and on top of that we were constantly reminded that our futures were on the line and if we didn’t get good grades we wouldn’t be accepted into college.

All that said, if my parents were fighting or the other kids were playing pranks on me again I was more likely to melt down. Also, if whatever it was (the assignment, the discrepancy, the subject) didn’t make sense, that made it more difficult. So my advice is to help the student understand the work and the grading discrepancy as best you can, and be patient as they’ve likely already shut down and aren’t going to be very receptive.

Fabe
Fabe
5 years ago

I’m totally in favor of that if it means they can name a submarine Ivan.

(GET IT !?)

(yes, this is my cryptic bad puns week)

I’m assuming you’re referencing the maneuver know as a “Crazy Ivan”?

Sinkable John : Pansy Ass Pinko
Sinkable John : Pansy Ass Pinko
5 years ago

@kupo

Alcohol is likely to make your insomnia worse, though. It might help you initially fall asleep but then you’re likely to wake up again a few hours later.

I know, I actually take advantage of that when I need to limit the amount of time I’m gonna be sleeping. Like if I haven’t slept in around 40-50 hours but when I finally start getting sleepy it’s too late and I need to be up less than 6 hours later. I know it’s unhealthy but in those situations it’s the only way I can make it. Otherwise I try to stay sober when there’s the slightest chance I’m gonna be sleeping. I don’t drink in order to sleep, but to deal with the aftermath of not sleeping enough. @anyone who dare say I’m destroying myself and it’s not helping : I know that full well, also fuck you. @pretty much everyone on WHTM, not including trolls : I love you folks for not being judgmental assholes.

Personally I’ve found mental health professionals to be shit at helping with insomnia, but primary care physicians have been good at finding prescriptions that actually helped me. So maybe give that a try?

In France, mental health professionals seem to be shit, period, and especially with insomnia. Especially when they fucking deny it. Like I don’t know what I’ve been living with for 24 years.
Sadly in my case medicine is out of the question anyway. I was pretty much born with insomnia, it seems to run in the family to a certain extent (apparently I’m the worst case so far 🙁 ), and never goes away. I can’t ride it out on a prescription because then it’s gonna be for life, and it seems I have very strong and quick drug tolerance : most prescriptions I’ve had have lasted me 2 weeks before they completely stopped having any sort of effect. The one thing that lasted longer was the massive doses of Tercian in hospital, and even that stopped working in less than a month. Stronger doses, or a longer period of time, would be harmful.

Really the only thing I’ve found to work somewhat reliably is weed : even if it doesn’t knock me out (it does under certain circumstances, that would be approximately half the time) it also makes the time spent laying awake trying to sleep much more bearable. My brain doesn’t keep replaying a never-ending loop of whatever I heard during the day like I’m hearing voices on a broken record, it doesn’t keep processing the most painful information it can find, it doesn’t make me miserable for hours before I can finally sleep. Half of the trouble with insomnia is what happens in your head while you try to fall asleep, a little personal slice of self-inflicted hell. Shutting that down is half the battle.

But hey, the only reliable thing I have found also happens to be illegal. These days I’m considering moving to any other country with permissive laws on acquisition and consumption, because I’m sick to death of my mental health essentially being outlawed while ministry-of-health-approved morons keep throwing useless and harmful crap at me, or outright telling me to “get a job, it’ll tire you out”.

@Fabe

I only found out about it when I then started googling for a submarine called Ivan. But no, that wasn’t the pun :p

Hint : if somebody finds a pic of a submarine called Ivan, I’ll use it as my avatar.

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
5 years ago

@ sinkable john

Really the only thing I’ve found to work somewhat reliably is weed

Have you tried experimenting with different types of weed/hash. I’ve find over the years that different stuff works (on me, YMMV) in different ways. A lot of the newer strains especially don’t seem to have the soporiphic affect of some of the classic bush types. Pity you’re not over here, there’s some home grown stuff sourced in London that makes people really sparko. (The young ‘uns complain it’s not strong enough but kids today eh? 🙂 )

I also recognise that ‘brain lock’ thing you describe. I’m lucky in that I don’t get insomnia in a genuine sense, but sometimes I do have that ‘million things all competing for attention at once’ thing buzzing around in there. It’s hard to snap out of. What works for me (apologies if you’ve already tried this) is less trying to achieve total tranquilly but instead providing a distraction/diversion that isn’t itself too stimulating. There’s certain types of music that do it for me.

Oh, and don’t know if you’ve ever tried mead but that’s something that makes me pleasantly drowsy.

Disclaimer: -As will be readily apparent I am not a doctor. 🙂

Imaginary Petal
Imaginary Petal
5 years ago

@Sinkable John

I feel you. My problems are nowhere near as severe, but on occassion I’ve had quite a bit of alcohol and/or weed on order to fall asleep. The noisy loop of useless thoughts, I recognize very much.

Sadly, I don’t think marijuana will be legalized here any time soon. Even our left wing parties are generally quite conservative when it comes to drug use. It’s one issue on which we’re far behind the US and many other countries. For me personally weed is extremely useful for pain management, so that’s the main reason why I long for legalization.

Sinkable John : Pansy Ass Pinko
Sinkable John : Pansy Ass Pinko
5 years ago

@Alan

True, different stuff has different effects. Sadly there’s the matter of availability : right now, in my case, it’s pretty bad, so I don’t get to be picky. I find that stronger-but-not-fancy-Amsterdam-kinda-strong weed works best for achieving sleep, for me at least. There’s decent sources in the city I’m moving to “soon” (was supposed to be three days from now, but it had to be delayed again to next month) so I’ll have to start working on cutting a budget.

I still haven’t found another way out of the brain-lock (that’s a nice way to put it, by the way – better than “Joan of Arc Syndrome” which is how I call it when I get especially upset about it). Music works fine during waking hours but now for some reason it also keeps me awake. Same with any other kind of diversion – even keeping my thoughts focused on something that isn’t the brain-lock itself will keep me awake.

@Imaginary Petal

Sadly, I don’t think marijuana will be legalized here any time soon.

Sorry, I don’t remember where you live, stoopid memory never registering the right stuff. Although it seems most countries in the world are far behind on this specific matter. Meh, even the US itself, although their problem as I understand it seems more about state-specific laws impeding national progress, as with pretty much all other social matters. Correct me if I’m wrong, I mean, I don’t understand US politics that well.

For me personally weed is extremely useful for pain management, so that’s the main reason why I long for legalization.

Damn, you’re the whole reason prohibition needs to end. Recreational use is one thing, the need to induce sleep is another, but at least it’s possible to make do without. Pain management is something else entirely.

ETA : @Alan

Forgot about mead – yeah, I know what you’re talking about. Mulled wine does it pretty well too, when cooked the right way (I have the best recipe ever, got it from a former bar owner friend whose bar used to be my main hangout even though I had to walk 30 minutes to reach it, that’s how good the place was). Grog too, I have dozens of different recipes for grog, it’s a huge hit with some of my friends in Paris. They basically house me, feed me and keep me stocked with ingredients as long as I keep making truckloads of the stuff.

Buttercup Q. Skullpants
Buttercup Q. Skullpants
5 years ago

@Sinkable John – wow, that’s awful. I’m so sorry. 🙁

I’ve been having trouble falling asleep (yay perimenopause) and looking for distractions from brain loops. Someone suggested ASMR videos, but they don’t work on me. It seems to be like Magic Eye: either you get it or you don’t. I’m curious – has anyone else tried them and gotten the magical warm tingle/brain orgasm effect?

Meanwhile, I’ve been watching the “Most Satisfying Video In The World” series on YouTube, and they really are hypnotically satisfying and relaxing. I could watch them all day. I guess people’s mileage varies on whatever soothes their particular neural circuitry.

Back to Mr. Nice Guy for a moment (I missed this chewy quote):

Ethically, I consider myself a deontologist

“…and it was incredibly wrong and evil of this one girl to reject me and overlook my awesomeness, so from now on I am RIGHTEOUSLY and JUSTLY going to reject all women and overlook their awesomeness.”

This guy strikes me as more of a situational ethicist, which seems to be very common in the manosphere. The black-and-white rules apply to everyone else, but not to him.

But he still gets to wave the banner of STOIC MALE HONOUR.

Sinkable John : Pansy Ass Pinko
Sinkable John : Pansy Ass Pinko
5 years ago

@Buttercup Q. Skullpants

I’ve been meaning to look into ASMR for two years now (can you say procrastination) and I still haven’t 😐

It’s the first time I hear of this Most Satisfying Video thing though, I’ll look into it too.

The Nice Guy is a most excellent specimen of his kind. The deontologist thing is seriously the most egregious thing I’ve read in a while, and I wade through the fever swamps of the Daily Stormer and Return of Kings, among others, as a hobby and on a daily basis. It’s almost glorious in its ridiculousness, well at any rate it would be if there wasn’t a very real woman being targeted by all his vicious abuse.

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