posted 1 day ago on metafilter
I need a style icon. I'm a mid-30s married mom to a toddler who works in a casual office at a desk all day. What am I supposed to look like?The last few years have limited my wardrobe to pregnancy clothes and then breastfeeding-friendly clothes. Top that off with being 15 pounds lighter than I was when I got pregnant, so I have a closet full of clothes from 3+ years ago that don't really fit me. But where do I find my style icon? Of course I have to be picky about it, too. I don't wear make-up. I don't like extra futzy stuff. But I like bold colors. But I like earth tones. My favorite outfits these days include: 1. purple skinny jeans, turquoise sweaters (so many turquoise sweaters), a fun under-stated silver necklace, and some red Toms shoes with blue squid painted on them 2. army green skinny jeans, various green or brown or grey toned sweaters, and either my hemp Fluevogs or tan calf-height boots. 3. sometimes a skirt or dress, if the mood strikes I'm not a Target-goer or a Starbucks-goer, which both seem to be the 30-something mom target market. I want higher quality garments than Target, too, with better fit and fabric. But digging through the racks at the local thrift store with little direction on the weekends when I could be splashing in the gutters with my kid isn't what I want to do, either. I'd like a style icon to give me some good ideas and direction. More than just "what's clean in the hamper". Is there such thing as a funky minimalist utilitarian style?

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posted 1 day ago on metafilter
My wife works in Corporate Treasury and has been considering creating a blog that discusses the intricacies of that career. One reason she wants to do this is because she cannot seem to locate any similar blogs or forums on this topic. So is anyone out there in any way connected to this realm and, if so, do you have any recommendations for her new endeavor? Also, if there are some noteworthy resources you think might be helpful, feel free to post them. Much thanks.

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posted 1 day ago on metafilter
FLAG is a unique anime series: a fictional war documentary told entirely through a camera lens. Background Wikipedia TV Tropes This post's first link goes to a playlist for the English dub. FLAG is a thoughtful drama that covers many war-related issues, including the role propaganda plays in modern warfare. Most of the animation is intended to be realistic rather than stylized. Overt CGI is minimal, and even though it's described on Wikipedia as a "mecha-genre anime series" there isn't much mecha action. All 13 episodes are shown through either a video or digital camera lens, photographic prints or webcam footage. This contributes to a documentary feel: footage looks as if it was compiled from multiple sources, captured as events unfolded. Reviews * The Anime Review * Nihon Review

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posted 1 day ago on metafilter
Micropanda (4) is sweet, bright, kind, and empathetic. He is also hypersensitive to sound, messy fingers, car motion, and water temperature, among other things. He had a rocky transition to preschool this fall - he behaves ok at school, but appears to exhaust his coping skills there, and has become volatile and meltdown-prone at home. Some deficiencies in his gross motor skills are also becoming apparent. I am becoming increasingly convinced that he has a sensory processing disorder with a motor component. On advice of our pediatrician, we have recently started him in once-weekly occupational therapy. I am wondering what other steps I need to be taking. Wall of snowflakes within.Micropanda does not seem to have any intellectual or language challenges. He is bright, enjoys wordplay, likes learning big words, has good reasoning skills, can carry on a solid conversation. His teachers say he is a bit withdrawn socially, but on balance he seems to have a couple of friends and relate to other kids OK. At this point I am not especially worried about an autism spectrum disorder. Micropanda has always been bothered by sticky or messy fingers and has had trouble with loud sounds for a couple of years now. If he becomes upset by a loud sound, it sometimes takes him a long time to recover. He's auditory defensive - if he thinks something might make a noise, he gets hands cocked and ready to clamp over his ears. Baths have become a nightmare - he has meltdowns about water temperature (more than barely lukewarm and he screams that it burns him), meltdowns because water might get in his eyes, meltdowns when it's time to get out because he's going to be cold, and meltdowns when he gets out and is cold. He often tells me I'm driving or braking too fast (I'm not). He is REALLY freaked out by the ball pit at the OT. I've had vague concerns about his motor skills for awhile - he's always been overly cautious on the playground. It's not overly noticeable just watching him walk around but he's afraid to climb anything harder than stairs, will not climb down ladders or other climbers, and still has trouble dressing himself. He can usually (but not always) manage pants, socks, and underwear, but can only manage shirts on the very best of days. He has maybe a 1% success rate at catching beanbags lobbed very gently to him from 3 feet away. The OT is still working through her evaluation but has commented that he seems to have a poor sense of where he is in space and also that he has poor trunk control. Now that I think about it, he sat and walked on time, but while he was learning to do those things he used to fall backwards and hit his head on the floor constantly. He'd be standing up and fall over backwards, pivoting at his feet, and hit the floor headfirst. He has little stamina and is tired a lot. We have a lot of evening meltdowns that have their roots in being tired, despite an early bedtime. He's doing OK at school, but definitely not performing at his academic abilities. The thing that concerns me most is that at home he loves math (no, seriously) and language. At home on non-school days, he's all for challenges, it's great to do hard things, it's great to exercise your brain. At school, he retreats to safe, easy activities (practical life and art). He avoids challenges. He tells me that his teachers want him to do hard things and he doesn't like it. I hear a lot of "[thing] is too difficult for me." His teachers have mentioned that at school he has a short attention span and has a lot of trouble completing work. On the other hand, he likes to watch the other kids work and does seem to absorb some of what they're doing. He doesn't melt down at school but the teachers have noted that he is overly emotional. He has trouble settling for naps at school and in the morning, he often seems anxious about going to school. (He's fine by the time I drop him off.) Of particular concern is his teachers' comment that he often does not participate in the class's gross motor activities (dancing in music class, hopping/skipping/jumping at line time.) On balance, though, they do think he's happy. [b]My biggest question is, besides continuing OT, what should I be doing?[/b] Should I pursue some sort of formal diagnosis? With whom? See the developmental pediatrician (>6 month wait)? Full evaluation through the school system? I'm not sure that at this point he exactly counts as "special needs", but on the other hand I do have real concerns about how he'll do when he gets to first grade and if we can get out in front of that, I'd like to. I'd also like to not be constantly walking on eggshells (e.g. I have to be very careful how much I ask about his day at school) and to be able to give the kid a bath. Yesterday we didn't have a single meltdown and it was the weirdest, most peaceful feeling. (Which only brings into focus that we're not in the best place, because seriously, he's 4, it shouldn't be a miracle that we got through a day without hysterical screaming). And then he had a spectacular meltdown this morning because his spoon was dirty. It had yogurt on it from scooping the yogurt into his bowl. The handle was pristine.

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posted 1 day ago on metafilter
The Galula Doctrine: An Interview with Galula's Biographer A.A. Cohen, who wrote Galula: The Life And Writings of the French Officer Who Defined Counterinsurgency, and an excerpt. David Galula is a popular subject: Grégor Mathias wrote Galula in Algeria: Counterinsurgency Practice Versus Theory, with the forward, is reviewed in Tablet by Ann Marlowe, author of David Galula: His Life And Intellectual Context[PDF], and also reviewed by Mike Few in Deconstructing Galula. Pacification in Algeria[PDF], by Galula from RAND. Pros and Cons of the Galula Model David Galula, Frantz Fanon, and the Imperfect Lessons of the Algerian War Cage match in a cornfield: G. Gentile wrestles J. Nagl on counterinsurgency Gentile: If we listen to A.A. Cohen and J. Nagl, we'll wind up involved in Syria Abu Muqawama: I Can't Get No (Military) Satisfaction - "The counterinsurgency debate very much resembles the protracted, indecisive wars that spawned it." title from Galula's Counterinsurgency Warfare: Theory and Practice[PDF, reviewed, reviewed], via James Fallow's Why Iraq Has No Army, The Atlantic 2005

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posted 1 day ago on metafilter
Jordan Peele and Keegan Michael Key star in a series of East/West Football videos wherein they play a number of increasingly uniquely named characters playing in a fictional football game. East/West Bowl 1, East/West Bowl 2, East/West Bowl Rap, Hingle McCringleberry's Excessive Celebration and East/West Bowl 3 (Pro Edition). It's possible that this was inspired by stand-up comedian Bob Nelson's 1980s routine about football players.

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posted 1 day ago on metafilter
Should I blog even though I don't know anybody who blogs, and would start with zero followers, and not even sure if people would like to see what I have to offer?I feel like this is a silly question but here goes. I have a few things I would like to share. Mainly four different themes. The first is I paint a lot and would like to start showing people. Only a few friends know I paint. I don't do it professionally, just for fun, but I would say my style is a bit different, also each painting comes with a poem beside it. I also have a lot of stories to tell which comes from having moved around so often all my life. My friends and other people say I have lots of interesting, funny, random stories. I'm overcoming an addiction and would say I have come very far this past year. I'm not completely recovered but I no longer suffer as much as before, and I feel if I write about it, I could help some people out there. Finally, I have a garden started from scratch and do lots of cooking, so that could also be interesting. The reason why I would like to blog is because it could help me put myself more out there and be less introverted and private. I feel when I'm more open about myself I feel freer and happier. I write for myself, and it helps me with my problems, but the blogs I read recommend blogging for a public because it helps. Another reason is I would like to help people or maybe give them some inspiration. However: -Though I do read some blogs, I would have no followers to start with! I have no idea how to gain readers. -Would I need to put photos of myself, or could I remain anonymous? -Is this a bad idea? It seems like it could be too much going on in one blog, too many themes, whereas most blogs are about something more specific. I would rather remain anonymous to friends, but if you think the only way to start is by putting it up on facebook then I Think about doing that... I wouldn't do this for money, but it would be nice to have some followers that aren't family or friends. Any advice? Thank you!

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posted 1 day ago on metafilter
I'm in Berkeley right now (near the Ashby BART station) and am headed down to Menlo Park this afternoon/early evening (today, Friday). It looks like there are two ways I can go: through San Francisco via rail the whole way, or along the East Bay via rail and then via bus across the Dumbarton Bridge. What's the easiest and/or quickest way?I'll have a carry-on-sized suitcase and a backpack with me. Thanks.

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posted 1 day ago on metafilter
"I am the gay community that many people think of, that gets to have its voice heard, who considers the prospect of marriage. But it certainly doesn't end with me." (SL Atlantic)

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posted 1 day ago on metafilter
Recently I have been getting random calls asking me for personal information in connection to business things which are private. When I ask whom is calling they hang up. This is to a private number I only give out to a handful of people. Is there a service online which will give me the name of the person associated with a number? (Based in Canada).

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posted 1 day ago on metafilter
"Grease delay," he said once more. "We should be back to full-throttle in a jiff, but there's a lot of grease paving the path to Flavortown." The woman did not nod, but tilted her gaze ever so to the left to see the view herself. No marinara monsoon, no blitzkrieg of bacon. Nothing but awesome blossoms as far as the eye could see. Tabitha Blankenbiller takes us on the Train to Flavortown. [h/t] Flavortown previously. See also: Guy Fieri Menu Item Generator. This is who Guy is.

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posted 1 day ago on metafilter
My employers are looking into obtaining some sort of emergency backup power for a couple of specific, large appliances. Assuming gas generators are not an option, what would a person use to provide a couple hours of power for, say, a freezer capable of pulling 15 amps when the compressor turns on?Some relevant background: 1) We're not looking to implement a full-scale power backup system for the entire lab. We can live for a while without lights and laptops. We're more thinking in terms of things like ultra-low-temp freezers, where in the event of an outage we'd benefit greatly from something that can (a) carry us through a short interruption and (if necessary) buy us enough time to move critical items elsewhere temporarily. 2) During the last major storm (well, major for this part of California) we did a "dry run" that involved renting a gas generator and setting it up outside the building. Power-wise it seemed adequate, but the noise and smell were pretty horrible and there was no way to move the generator to where it wouldn't pipe fumes into the office while still being close enough to reach inside via extension cords. 3) We're renters in a multi-office/lab suite. Single story. We have neighbors. This means that ideally our backup system could be stored and used inside our suite (not placed outside our lobby!) and would not entail any large, landlord-frightening infrastructure changes. ...so, to reiterate my basic question: what (if any) non-gas options exist for us to back up one of our big ultralow freezers for perhaps 2-4 hours at a stretch? Something like a UPS would be perfect in terms of storability and quietness, but I'm having trouble finding UPSs that could handle the peak current draw requirements of the freezers we're looking at here. References, anecdotes, websites, vendors, and recommendations from personal experience are all welcome. Thanks!

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posted 1 day ago on metafilter
What bands can you recommend that sound similar to early "Fun House" era Stooges?I've been on a Stooges kick lately, especially "Fun House". What bands/songs can you recommend that have this similar grimy, jammy, funk-punk sound? Any era, new or old is acceptable...

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posted 1 day ago on metafilter
What do I need to do to get my car out of the snow at the Lefferts Blvd parking lot?I parked in the Leffers Blvd parking lot at JFK last Sunday, and since then we've gotten a bunch of snow. There must be some sort of procedure for getting my car out, but what is it? Do I need to go to a counter somewhere at the airport and arrange for it? Do they have crewmen driving around with shovels that I need to flag down? How long should I expect it to take? I will have two small children with me, so it would be really helpful to know what to do ahead of time. It must be a really common issue at JFK but I can't find any information about it online.

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posted 1 day ago on metafilter
You have an app from your bank on your phone which lets you access your account and make payments. To verify payments you receive an mTAN SMS. Why is it not a terrible, terrible idea that both of these things are happening on the same device?If my PC gets hacked, no payments can be made without an mTAN (SMS TAN) being sent to my phone. As well as the verification code, the SMS contains the IBAN number and amount of the transaction. But if my phone gets hacked the attackers gets both the ability to start the payment, and the ability to approve the payment. Why do banks allow this? Isn't this a terrible idea? What am I missing?

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posted 1 day ago on metafilter
My sister/roommate travelled to Turkey for two weeks about a month ago and is now hospitalized for acute hepatitis. She became symptomatic about 28 days after the trip. She also recently took a prescribed antibiotics with known liver toxicity. Doctors said that the cause is not viral, and "most likely Turkey," and I don't know what that means.We were very worried that it could be hepatitis A, in which case I need to get tested too. But her doctors are saying that it's definitely not viral, and it'll be a week before they can conclusively know what caused her hepatitis. Right now they are saying "It's most likely Turkey, but we don't know what it is." They didn't give us a lot of their time. Do they mean maybe toxin exposure in Turkey? Do they mean food? If it's something that happened DURING the trip, how come it took so long before she got sick? Could it be one of the food/drinks/cups that she brought home as souvenir? If so then the source of the toxin is still in our apartment and we need to not be in contact. Why does the tests take so long? Could the antibiotics push her over the threshold? Can they be certain it's not Hep A, because I would really like to know how to protect myself. Any ideas, recommendation for things to read, recommendations for search keywords, or explanations for non-viral, non-alcohol hepatitis, would be greatly appreciated. *sister did not have a pre-existing liver condition; we both got Hep B and C vaccination but not A; she was in good health before all this.

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posted 1 day ago on metafilter
My academic and professional references have asked me to keep them informed of what jobs I'm applying to, both so that they have a heads-up, and so that they can let me know if they've been called. I haven't been very good at doing this consistently because I don't know how to phrase that email.I have sent a few emails like this: "Hi [Name], These are the positions that I am applying to that I submitted your name as a reference for: [Name of the position]: [link] [Name of the position]: [link] I have attached my new resume as well. Hope you are doing well! Take care, wrabbit" Except, I've been job searching for a while and I'm beginning to feel like a pest, especially considering that none my references have even been contacted yet for any of the positions I've applied for, as far as I know. And, since I haven't informed them of every job I apply to, I worry that it might be starting to seem as though I'm not trying very hard at all. I'm a little embarrassed, to be honest. So, the email: should I say more? How often should I email? Once a month with the jobs I've applied to with references that month? Once a week? Every time I submit and application with references? Also, should I keep emailing each person personally or should I send one email and bcc each person I used as a reference. Basically, how can I do this better?

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posted 1 day ago on metafilter
HOW TO BECOME A ROBOT IN 12 EASY STEPS by A. Merc Rustad. (short story)

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posted 1 day ago on metafilter
Don't Mess With Texas' Chili. 'So when a cookbook author like Mark Bittman writes—in How to Cook Everything—that chili means "slow-cooked red beans seasoned with cumin and chiles," he betrays his ignorance of the dish and its history. When he writes that a true chili dish, one made with meat and no beans, has "entered the realm of cassoulet," he might confuse chili-heads who don't know what cassoulet means—but they'll always recognize when someone's messin' with Texas. It's when Bittman advises amateur cooks to make chili with tofu or espresso that he is doing something worse than disrespecting the dish—he is suggesting that the names of foods can mean whatever the speaker wants them to mean.' Somehow the misguided folks at Cook's Country escape the criticism they deserve for their crimes against chili. For that matter their taste in salsa is also suspect. Get a rope.

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posted 1 day ago on metafilter
Are there podcasts about the contemporary classical / alt classical / new music / experimental music scene? Particularly interviews with composers and musicians, talk about the music, and so forth; as opposed to playlists of the music itself. WNYC's Soundcheck and other public radio podcasts sometimes touch on this kind of stuff, but I want more! And not just John Adams and John Luther Adams all the time. Blog recommendations also welcome, but podcasts seem like a perfect format for talking about music.

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posted 1 day ago on metafilter
The Queen Of Code. You probably don't know the name Grace Hopper, but you should. As a rear admiral in the U.S. Navy, Hopper worked on the first computer, the Harvard Mark 1. And she headed the team that created the first compiler, which led to the creation of COBOL, a programming language that by the year 2000 accounted for 70 percent of all actively used code. Passing away in 1992, she left behind an inimitable legacy as a brilliant programmer and pioneering woman in male-dominated fields.

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posted 1 day ago on metafilter
I was incredibly touched to learn that my goddaughter has decided that in lieu of a birthday party she's inviting all of her guests to a local book repository to sort, sticker, and bag books destined for low-income families. I love this and want to do something for her birthday to help encourage more of this kind of thing in the future. Help me choose from some options or suggest something else:a) Give $500 to the book depository. b) Give her a "certificate" for $500 to give to the charity of her choice. c) Match (probably by some multiplier) any money she raises in 2015. d) Provide a "work stipend" at $X/hr to be paid to the charity of her choice at the end of the year. a) & b) are simple, but they don't really foster continued community service. c) is fine, except I don't know how much a kid can really raise-- or if they would understand the value of a multiplier. d) is kind of like a charity allowance, but I don't know if I really want to equate charity with work. Any advice or other suggestions?

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posted 1 day ago on metafilter
If you enjoy Erik Ferguson's short films VEv and Kometh, you might also like his Birth series and Worm series. Lots more horrifically lifelike rendering on his Vimeo page. (Possibly NSFLunch.)

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posted 1 day ago on metafilter
Rediscover your musical past. Enter your birthday with day and year and this fun site gives you what was popular from your date of birth right up to when you graduated college (provided that you went at all or didn't graduate like me).

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posted 1 day ago on metafilter
This summer during the Transom Traveling Workshop on Catalina workshop, I produced my first public radio piece. While writing my script, I was suddenly gripped with a deep fear about my ability to narrate my piece. As I read the script back to myself while editing, I realized that as I was speaking aloud I was also imagining someone else's voice saying my piece. The voice I was hearing and gradually beginning to imitate was something in between the voice of Roman Mars and Sarah Koenig. Those two very different voices have many complex and wonderful qualities. They also sound like white people. My natural voice — the voice that I most use when I am most comfortable — doesn't sound like that. On the sound of public media, on the air and in the podcast world, from Chenjerai Kumanyika, communications professor and hip-hop artist. (via NPR) See also: All Things Considerate, How NPR makes Tavis Smiley sound like Linda Wertheimer.

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