posted 3 days ago on metafilter
Japanese novelist Yoshiki Tanaka's sprawling 10-volume space opera, Legend of the Galactic Heroes, was published from 1982 through 1987. Additionally, 5 volumes of side stories were published from 1984 to 1989. While the novels only recently became available in English, the series became well-known outside of Japan through an anime adaptation that began in 1988 and did not conclude until 2000. The series has also been adapted to computer games, manga, and the stage. Most recently, a new anime adaptation, Legend of the Galactic Heroes: Die Neue These, started airing in April, 2018. The series describes the military and political struggles between the Galactic Empire and the Free Planets Alliance, which had been at war for 150 years when we are introduced to the "Indomitable Prodigy" Reinhard von Lohengramm and the "Unbeatable Magician" Yang Wen-li. Reinhard and Yang are opposing military leaders, each espousing different beliefs about the role of government, but sharing mutual admiration and distaste for the existing leadership in their respective governments. The Galactic Empire was founded on principles of eugenics, suppression of political dissent, and the establishment of an aristocracy. The Free Planets Alliance was formed by escapees from the Empire, who organized themselves as a representative democracy. The first anime adaptation spanned 110 episodes of 25 minutes each for the main story, 52 episodes of side stories, and 3 anime films. The adaptation did not air on TV, but was an OVA series, with episodes released monthly to subscribers, initially as videotapes. While animation quality varied wildly over the episodes, it boasted an impressive classical music soundtrack, courtesy of the novels' publisher Tokuma Shoten, which had acquired the back catalog of an East German classical music record label during the bubble years, and let the OVA use it for free. For those embarking on viewing the OVA series, this blog can be an interesting companion: icebergs: A queer, episode-by-episode close reading of Legend of Galactic Heroes According to a 2016 interview, Tanaka had no involvement with the OVA version. He was more closely involved with the 2018 anime adaptation, reviewing meeting note and able to order changes if deemed necessary. The new adaptation will cover vol. 1 of the novel in 12 episodes, and vol. 2 through three films composed of four episodes each. Their success will determine the fate of further adaptations. Legend of Galactic Heroes: Die Neue These ep. 1 Anime Feminist review

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
In BoardGameGeek's 18 years of existence, cataloging and judging board games from all over the world, only seven games have occupied the #1 overall position. The newest is Cephalofair Games' Gloomhaven, a super-ambitious legacy game that plays like Dungeons and Dragons using cards instead of dice. It weighs more than 20 pounds, costs around $200, and comes with more than 100 branching adventures for the players to hack and slash their way through. Reaching BGG's #1 position is particularly amazing for a game that isn't actually on the market yet (not counting the the two Kickstarter campaigns). FiveThirtyEight's senior board games correspondent Oliver Roeder takes a look at why it may be hard for any game to break Gloomhaven's hold on the top spot.

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
Actually, Adam Sandler Is a Genius [Vice] "A low-brow comedy ingénue who skyrocketed to blockbuster success with a string of formulaic family comedies, Sandler's brand eventually turned self-cannibalistic, tedious, and infuriating—yet, remained profitable. In the shadow of the Happy Madison factory, however, is a Wonka-like figure whose abilities are misunderstood. To me, Sandler remains one of the most enigmatic performers of his generation: a man that can star in Punch Drunk Love and Mr. Deeds in the same year. It's easy to hate the cynical dreck he's put out, and his hacky performances therein." • Adam Sandler's DGAF Phase Will Never End, and Maybe It Shouldn't [The Ringer] "Possibly the central idea here is that Sandler and Netflix are uncommonly suited for each other, in that he specializes in precisely the sort of loud but passive, flashy but cheap, not-great-but-who-cares stunts that aren't so much movies as half-cynical Events on the order of Bright or The Cloverfield Paradox. Something about the very act of firing up a movie on Netflix feels ultra-casual and pointedly prestige-averse: It somehow feels like an insult to your intelligence if the people onscreen are putting on airs or for that matter trying at all. All these years later, his movies still feel like overgrown and undercooked SNL sketches, the seams visible, the tone erratic, the comedy actually sharper when the entire conceit threatens to collapse. The whole point of a Netflix-exclusive movie is you aren't supposed to think too hard about it; you don't even have to really watch it while you're watching it." • Adam Sandler Is One of the World's Best Actors, and His New Role Suggests He Finally Realizes It [Indie Wire] "Last summer, in IndieWire's review of "The Meyerowitz Stories," this critic wrote that "It remains hugely frustrating how great Adam Sandler can be when he's not making Adam Sandler movies." If it didn't seem necessary to hash out the distinction between a movie with Adam Sandler, and an Adam Sandler Movie, that's only because the difference between the two is ridiculously obvious. The former category includes fiercely beloved masterpieces like "Punch-Drunk Love" and "Funny People." The latter category includes minor crimes against humanity like "That's My Boy" and "Grown Ups 2." If you see him in something directed by James L. Brooks, someone who idolizes James L. Brooks, or even by someone who's met James L. Brooks, then you're probably watching a movie with Adam Sandler. If you see him in something that co-stars David Spade, features a scene where Shaquille O'Neal throws someone over a house, and/or involves a plot point about his character having sex with Vanilla Ice's mom, then it's safe to assume you're watching an Adam Sandler Movie." • Has Adam Sandler Been Trolling Us this Whole Time? [Highsnobiety] "There are two ways to view Sandler's career, and critics have made both arguments. Either he periodically appears in prestige projects as a brand-building detour from his main pursuit of soulless money making or he is a frustrated "serious artist," who is rarely offered more serious opportunities. You don't have to look far to find arguments like The Washington Post's Michael E. Miller's "Adam Sandler is awful, and it's our fault," in which he claimed Sandler "was stung by poor box office response to his more serious roles." Only Sandler knows which of these is true, or if it is a little bit of both. All we have to look at is a career in which an actor who appears in a prolific run of terrible movies gets a seven-year itch for prestige, and earns critical adulation, only to go back to the schlock he was doing before. Every few years, Adam Sandler gives us a performance that looks like it might change the trajectory of his career, but then a sequel to Little Nicky or Don't Mess With the Zohan beckons and he just can't help himself. We might have to wait until he has told his last fart joke and hung up his prosthetics for a full appraisal of Sandler's career. It might take a memoir or biography to get at the root of his career choices." • Meet the Man Who Is Watching One Adam Sandler Movie Every Day for the Next Year [Exlaim!*@#] "Adam Sandler has been a constant in my life since I was a child. I grew up watching him on SNL and obsessing over his albums and movies. I used to sneak a tape recorder into movie theaters and record audio from movies so I could listen over and over and memorize dialogues. I can't tell you how many arguments i've had over the years defending him. In 2016 I made this curated chronological playlist of his movies and stayed up all night with a bunch of friends to watch it. We called it SandlerCon and everyone came in costume as their favorite characters and I made a five-course menu inspired by his movies (ex: meatball served directly on your hand). It was really fun and stupid and we did again this year. I bought a huge prize wheel and put all of his movies on it and we spun it for 24 hours and watched whatever it landed on. That's kind of where the idea was born. I'm kind of a masochist and love endurance tests so I figured it would be fun and dumb to pair that with my genuine love of the Sandman."

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
Going to a thing that requires many hours of standing around and waiting on concrete floors for several consecutive days. It will be very crowded. What sort of portable chair should I bring?It should be as lightweight as possible and as comfortable as possible - I understand those two probably are not all that compatible. I'd like to fit it in a backpack if I can, but carrying it by its own strap could work. A camp chair is too bulky. I'm not interested in a cane with a seat because I don't want to carry a cane. I don't want one of those leaning chairs that is just a stick you rest your bottom on while standing. I've seen a variety of camping stools that look like they might work, so which of these have you placed your own butt on and liked? Or is there some other amazing option I haven't seen on Amazon? I'd love to get higher off the ground if possible. I'd need this to be very simple to set up too...I'll be sitting, then walk away for a few minutes, then sitting again, so I'd like it to just "pop" open rather than need me to install the pegs into the thingies, etc. I have time for shipping, and would spend up to 50 USD. Looking to accommodate an adult over 150 lbs but under 200.

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
I've seen a number of episodes of House Hunters Renovation, and you'll frequently see a couple say their budget is "$500k total" and they'll buy a $425k house and have $75k "left over" for renovation work. What's the structure of home loans that would make this kind of deal work for the average home buyer? I've never heard of a bank giving out loans that included a big buffer over the appraisal/asking price to cover renovations, so how do people do it?I don't understand where the money comes from, because normally banks only give you a mortgage for at or below what the house is appraised for. If you buy a $425k house, you'll want to have 20% down as cash, or take out a 2nd mortgage to cover that, then the first mortgage is 80% of the value. Are they getting construction loans? (usually at higher rates than HELOCs right?) Are they using HELOCs? Are they holding back money made on an earlier sale of a previous home? How do normal people afford these? Also, where do they get the idea of a "$500k total budget" in the first place? Is it a mortgage you qualify for plus HELOC plus cash to make that number? How does one calculate such a number?

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
What is the best matcha powder to buy to make cold drinks with? Also what are the yummiest milks, etc., to mix it with, and the best sweeteners? No dietary restrictions at all except that I don't like stevia or artificial sweeteners.

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
Being hugged by someone makes me cringe. Someone getting too close to me makes me move away subconsciously. What is wrong with me?All of my life I haven't been a touchy person. I grew up in a home without much physical touch that wasn't abusive, and I was never the one to initiate a hug with a friend or family member. At most it was a pat on the back.. I'm in my early 20's now, and this has been really effecting me. Dating is a nightmare because I get extremely anxious when they want to hold my hand or cuddle. There have been times I force myself, and this ends up with me outbursting in tears just simply cuddling during a movie. My mom had me countless therapists for this growing up, but their only solution was to find someone to be patient enough with me. I really hate being this way. Some nights I come home from a date where they're curious why I keep sliding away on the couch that I just get drunk and cry. I don't get it. Of course, I have had relationships, and there have been times I was not like this. Occasionally I'm okay jumping in with a guy (who usually is a douche good at charming me), and being affectionate with them. My last relationship was extremely unhealthy because it was very toxic but I didn't want to leave him because he was one of maybe three people I've been okay actually hugging me and me missing that. Any advice here? I've thought maybe I'm more into girls, because I believe I'm bisexual, but I'm even more awkward around females. I grew up without a father in my life, and I wasn't sexually abused growing up. Just received some black eyes and bruises.. I'm at the end of the rope here. I don't even know if I can date. It seems impossible for me because someone avoiding being closer than at least three feet is not fun. The guy usually starts to think I simply don't like him, and no one seems to understand why I can't just hug someone without panicking and hardly breathing. Negative or positive, I really need help. All advice appreciated. Thank you.

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
I'm not very computer literate, so I'm hoping someone can help me. Although I can still access and use my e-mail without any problems, I can no longer check the comments section of their articles, nor post any comments.When I click on the comments link, I get an error message stating "Sorry, we can't load comments right now. Try again." This happens regardless of the computer I'm using, and doesn't happen to others who use those computers, such as when I'm visiting my parents and using theirs. I've looked into the possibility of contacting Yahoo's, um, "Customer Service", but my experience has been that it's impossible to talk to an actual human being from that company, and nothing in their FAQ addresses this issue. Deleting my browsing history and restarting the computer hasn't helped. Is there anything I can do, or should I resign myself to no longer being able to use Yahoo the way I did before? Thank you.

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
I'm small and petite framed - 5'0, 115 pre-pregnancy. I want a wrap to wear my newborn around the house and out for walks, and I can't seem to decide on one because the choices are overwhelming and the reviews are mostly good, which doesn't narrow the pool much. Details below the fold.It's going to be warm when she's born so I need something breathable. I tried the Baby Waybe and I love how soft it is, but it's too heavy and WAY too long (9 ft). Does anyone have any other recommendations?

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
What happened when a British couple decided to let their farm go to the weeds

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
I am looking for the most portable type of crafting that I can take everywhere and whip out as soon as my anxiety/sensory stuff gets out of hand, or when the conversation of People I Can't Avoid Forever And Their Upsetting Topics becomes distressing to me.I am an intermediate knitter but find carrying bulky yarn and long needles around to be annoying and slightly dangerous. I have thought about embroidery but the many threads and complex patterns seem less than portable. Do you have any suggestions? Requirements: it needs to be relatively small, tidy, and simple enough to perform that I can jump in and out of conversation at will. It absolutely needs to be something that I can look at if I can't handle any more eye contact. Alternatively, if there is something other than crafting or looking at my phone that serves the same purpose, I'd like to know; I can only search for and put on hand cream so many times!

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
I have been agonizing over an simple engineering dilemma for several years now, and I think I would like to submit it to maybe a junior-high-level or better engineering class to see if they can figure out something. What or how is the best way to go about this?The challenge is this: Using only 'scotch' tape and a single 3x5 notecard, construct a shelf that will hold the weight of four US quarter coins for at least a week without failing. The shelf will be pinned to wall by only a single standard push-pin. Is there a good place to submit this challenge to, that accepts these kinds of challenges, or to possibly maximize participants? I consider it akin to a pinewood derby kind of challenge, or a toothpicks-and-marshmallows structure/bridge kind of challenge. (incidentally, if you would personally like to try this challenge yourself, feel free)

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
We have seven to ten days for a family vacation in July. We have never been to any of the Maritime Provinces so we're taking a road trip north. Please recommend beaches, restaurants, and things to do in any of the provinces so we can eventually hammer out a plan.We'll be coming from Rhode Island and I know it's about seven hours to St. John. Kid Ruki is 16 and an artist. This is our compromise for the mister wanting a beach vacation and me not being able to handle high heat and humidity and getting bored of all beach all the time.

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
I am trying to think of good ideas for a birthday gift for my sister. She will be 54. Her hobbies are cooking, nature photography and outdoor recreation She also runs and does other exercise regularly. She has a dog that she spoils. We live in the desert southwest. She works at a sporting goods store, so she already gets great deals on gear for outdoor recreation. My budget is up to $100.

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
We're heading up from Buffalo to Toronto in mid-June to see a show at the Danforth Music Hall. Where's a good place to stay, and is there anything particularly fun in the area we should plan to do while we're in town?We have tickets to see the Fratellis at the Danforth Music Hall in Toronto on June 22. Woo! Because of an otherwise busy week and weekend, however (we literally have tickets to another event in Buffalo at 2:00 PM the next day), we're pretty much just popping over the border for the concert and *maybe* a little something else before. Are there decent places to stay within walking/public transport distance of the music hall, or should we plan on driving over from wherever we end up staying? (It looks like street parking and a "green lot" are our parking options). Are there any must-do little fun things you'd recommend nearby (or awesome restaurants) that we should hit? We probably won't arrive until after noon the day of the show, which is at 7, and we'll leave first thing the next morning, so we'd be looking for mid-day/early evening activities for two adults on a Saturday. We like weird/quirky/creepy/unusual things and Really Good Food.

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
Is it possible, or advisable, to install a second hard drive in my new tower? I recently purchased a new tower with Win10. It has a 480GB SSd and a 1TB regular drive. My old PC has Win7.The new case is large with several open slots. Someone made the comment that I could install my old hard drive in one of the bays as it too has 1TB. As a tangent, I understand that outside of programs that Windows has to see on C drive, it is possible to chose for programs, or at least their files, to install on the non SSD drive. Thanks in advance.

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
An organic farm in Georgia received Spanish hogs a few years ago and they should be ready to release next year. Will it really be as good as the fabulous Spanish ham? We'll see. Content warming: hog butchery

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
A Sudanese desert resort operated my Mossad was used as a cover to rescue Ethiopian Jews stranded in refugee camps in the 1980s. (SL BBC)

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
You already know who. It's white people in general and white men in particular, and especially white Protestant men, some of whom are apparently dismayed to find out that there is going to be, as your mom might have put it, sharing. The history of this country has been written as their story, and the news sometimes still tells it this way—one of the battles of our time is about who the story is about, who matters and who decides. Rebecca Solnit talks about the myth of the real America and whose stories are treated with respect and whose are not.

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
After an offer and a counter offer, we've hit upon a mutually agreeable purchase price, but seller wants us to waive the appraisal contingency. If we have the cash to offer $X above appraisal up to agreed upon price, is that a terrible idea?See previous question here. We've made the decision to move forward, gotten our financing in order, and hired a real estate attorney (neither side is using an agent), who prepared an offer for us. We offered under asking price, sellers countered for less than half the difference, and we are cool with that price. Except... they want us to waive the appraisal contingency. (They did agree to our inspection contingency, and sent a very detailed disclosure form.) This is not our first home purchase, but we bought our first (small, low value) home in cash from extremely motivated sellers for way under market value because it was in terrible condition (which we knew and didn't care because we planned to gut reno everything anyway) - so there was no offering and counter offering, contingencies, etc. We used the same real estate attorney and basically made a verbal agreement with the seller, walked into the attorney's office and signed some paperwork, and walked out with the keys after writing a check for purchase price plus a nominal lawyer's fee. So we are torn about how to proceed here. On the one hand, we strongly suspect the appraisal will come in under the agreed upon price, which we were sort of counting on to lower our final purchase price (although we don't NEED a lower price for affordability - it's just that who wants to spend more money than you have to?). On the other hand, we REALLY want the house (see previous question for explanation of why this specific house is sort of the one-and-only for us) and have the cash to be able to offer $X above the appraisal price, up to their counter offer price... particularly because in the grand scheme of things, if we do the math right, the total amount of our down payment won't have to change. We were prepared to put more than 20% down, but if the appraisal comes in low than 20% of the home value will decrease such that we could still put 20% down and then throw the rest of our planned down payment at this "$X above appraisal" situation. [Does this make sense?] However, it seems like overpaying for the house is kind of... dumb. But we also foresee this being our forever home, and plan to live there for a long, long time. We don't really care a ton about resale value. We are extremely invested in living in this specific neighborhood, and will probably end up over improving the house anyway, because we care more about location + living comforts than the wisdom of not putting more in a property than you can get out. So does it really matter if we overpay? I've also read online that some banks will just reject the loan completely in this situation, even in the buyer wants to make up the difference in cash. Is that true these days? Is this something we can ask the lender ahead of time without sending up a red flag? Finally, is there any way to estimate what the appraisal might be? Because of the uniqueness of the property (again, see previous question) there are literally no comps. We have a real estate agent friend who used his software to pull comps for us and literally nothing exists within a mile radius. Extending the radius leads to comps from a nearish, but totally different and MUCH higher end neighborhood, which would lead to an overvaluation of the house we want to buy - which, in this situation, actually works out well for us because we WANT it to appraise for the price we have agreed upon if the sellers are unwilling to move forward with an appraisal contingency in place. We've tried figuring a price per square foot from smaller properties to guess the value of the one we want to buy, and using the immediate neighborhood (which is not desirable to most) vs. the further away, but super fancy neighborhood, price/sq ft gives a difference of $150,000... so we are totally in the dark about what a random appraiser who might not know the neighborhood will say. The tax assessment is much lower than our agreed upon price, but that is the norm in our city and tax assessments are kind of all over the place, so that doesn't really help us much. A few final pieces of info if it makes a difference - the total home value we are talking about here is in the $1XX,XXX range. Not crazy expensive in the real estate world, although a big step up for us. This is a cheap neighborhood in a cheap city. We also would not totally waive the contingency - we would only be willing to counter offer with something like "we will pay $X,000 cash over the appraisal price, but only up to agreed upon purchase price." We're not insane and also don't have $50,000 (beyond our down payment) cash if that's what the difference was. Finally, we strongly suspect that IF we refused to waive the contingency, the sellers would walk away because we know what they paid for the house and they've repeatedly said that they won't sell for less than what they paid... and we're assuming they paid over appraised value since they obviously think it will appraise for less than that. Lastly, we do have an inspection contingency and due to the age of the home, there will almost certainly be SOMETHING in the inspection that we could use as an excuse to walk away if we needed to.

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
Men outnumber women by 70 million in China and India. The consequences of having too many men, now coming of age, are far-reaching: Beyond an epidemic of loneliness, the imbalance distorts labor markets, drives up savings rates in China and drives down consumption, artificially inflates certain property values, and parallels increases in violent crime, trafficking or prostitution in a growing number of locations. On the other side of the demographic equation is a smaller, equally new group that has received rather less attention: women like June, whose parents chose to allow a daughter into the world at a time when others wanted a son. These girls were lucky in many ways, and given opportunities that would once have been reserved for their brothers. They were pushed to study, succeed and achieve as only boys had done before them.

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
I'm going to a New York City (specifically Manhattan, but I don't think anyone's going to be picky) -themed potluck, and need ideas for menu items.So far I've come up with Manhattan-style clam chowder, Waldorf salad, New York steak, bagels, cheesecake, and pastrami. Is there anything I'm missing? Do you have any ideas for specific recipes involving these foods, or ways they could be presented for a potluck? (Bonus points for anything that can be made a day in advance and kept in the fridge overnight.) Thanks!

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
Had a job interview that went really well with 4 of the interviewers - I could feel a strong connection and got a sense communication was going well. Then the 5th interviewer asked me some really odd questions and I'm not sure if my reaction is way off base. Snowflake details inside.I'm a front end web developer interviewing for seinor-level positions. As background, I'd already decided to end any interview process in which I was asked trick Javascript questions or pointless word-problem questions that amounted to testing whether I have a certain sort algorithm memorized, just because I know I won't fit in culturally at an employer who thinks asking such questions will reveal a great front-end developer (also I find big data boooooooring.) So: I interviewed at this employer who make useful stuff and are doing interesting work that could make certain aspects of routine healthcare easier and more affordable, which aligns with my values. I went in for one of those mega-interview sessions in which I talked to 5 people for 45 minutes each back to back. The first 4 went great and this company went from a maybe to a strong possibility for me based on those conversations. Then the 5th came. At first it was fine but when the interviewer brought out his Javascript questions they were... weird. First question: what is a Javascript factorial? Now, I've been writing JS for 20 years and have never heard of a method/object/property/keyword, etc in JS called "factorial." I know what a factorial is mathematically, and I could probably write a little function that takes an integer and returns its factorial; it'd be something that called itself starting with the number passed in and subtracting til it got to 1, but that's not what was asked, so I answered honestly, "I've never even heard of a Javascript factorial." Second question: what is cutty/cuddy/kutty/kuddy - I asked for it to be spelled and the interviewer just said "let's move on." Third question: if I wanted to fake an ES6 class using ES5 how would I do that? The real answer is: I wouldn't because why would I want to? What I said was, "I'd use Babel. Are you asking how transpilers like Babel accomplish this?" Again, we just moved on. All of the JS questions were like this. Reader, it got to the point where it felt like I was being gaslit into thinking I was stupid and knew nothing about a language I've been writing in for 20 years. When it came time for me to ask my questions, I asked, jokingly "what IS a Javascript factorial?" And. He replied "you'll have to look that up." So then I said "well you've asked a lot of questions that lie outside my 20 years' experience; I'm curious to know what kind of work is being done in this role; I'd been led to believe this was a web-based front-end role. Is that understanding not correct." His reply: "we consider this part of front-end." He seemed like a nice guy but I left the interview with a really bad taste in my mouth. It got worse when I started Googling at home. MDN has no mention of a "Javascript factorial." Nor can I find any clue as to what cutty/cuddy/kutty/kudde/kuddie/qutty (or any other phonetic approximation of that) is. The factorial thing could be a trick question, or it could have been a poorly phrased request to write a function that returns a factorial (there was no whiteboard though). Either way, learning that there was nothing to look up in the first place made me wonder what the hell was going on in that interview, and also, what should I say to the in-house recruiter? I'm definitely wary of the company now that I've had that experience - a communication breakdown of that level is alarming. But am I overreacting? Should I just let it go? I imagine even if the company makes an offer, the fact that I had no answers for a fifth of the interview questions is going to affect compensation, which I would consider unfair to say the least. What say ye, MeFites?

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
I work at a local school as an English tutor, so I'll be off July and most of August. I also work as an online English Tutor for a company based in Taiwan. I have experience working with students of all ages and levels.Things to consider: - relatively cheap cost of living (I'll want to keep paying rent on my apartment) - Spanish speaking country would be great since I'm trying to learn the language - a place with good internet so I can continue tutoring online Is this at all realistic?? I'm having a hard time weeding through information online because there is so much about TEFL/TESOL etc. out there.

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
My roommate did not pay the electric bill, apparently we were far overdue to the point where the electric company was about to cut electricity. Should this be something I should bring up with the landlord?I've done an ask about my roommate/the current housing situation I am in before, here. Sad to say that things had gotten worse. My roommate was out of town starting last Thursday, and when I got home on Friday evening, I noticed a letter on the counter from our electric company, stating an intent to disconnect service if my roommate did not pay a certain amount by that day. The letter was dated April 6. This sent me in a mad panic, and I immediately called the electric company, using his name and account number, to ask if the overdue amount was paid. No, it was not. I texted my roommate and told him, and he was like "oh shit, I'm in a meeting, I can pay it after, or you can go ahead and pay it now, I'm in California (we live in DC)." As the electric company was closing in about only two hours, I elected to pay the balance required to continue service. I was told there was also an outstanding balance as well. I was fuming and livid - I had narrowly escaped us from losing service, over the weekend, when I would be home alone. This was majorly irresponsible on my roommate's part. I asked him to pay me back the full amount that I paid, as the letter said that the overdue part was from October to February, and I had already paid him for February. (I'll elaborate a bit more below.) He gave me a vague answer, saying that he would go over everything when he comes back to DC. Short back story: my roommate did not ask me for my share of bills until two months after I moved in - he kept postponing. Finally, he gave me the amounts for each month (2xelectricty and 2xInternet), and said he did not pay the gas bill yet. I transferred the amounts to him. On Friday, he showed me a screenshot of his bank account with the search for the electric company... apparently he only paid them once back in March, so what happened to the money I sent him? He made it sound like it was more than the agreed amount that I already transferred him. He made it clear at the time he asked me for the two bills, that the amount was for the two months. This situation is making me very, very, very anxious. I am very fortunate that I saw the letter, and got home in time to call the electric company... narrowly avoiding losing electricity for the whole weekend. I had no idea this was happening or about to happen. I paid the required amount to "reconnect" (thankfully we were not disconnected yet!), and haven't gotten that money back. I don't know if I ever will get that money back. I pay $1200 per month for this, a substantially larger amount than my previous place, and this is what I have to go through? It really disgusts me, and I'm afraid my roommate will try to rip me off for more money. I also checked our Internet XFINITY bill on the TV, and it was also past overdue... again. I'm very nervous about gas, too. My roommate tended to leave the fireplace on often during cold weather, even recently, and it'd seem to be off, but I'd see that it was actually on the lowest setting/pilot, overnight and even for days. He hasn't even asked me yet for the gas bill, and I'm very afraid it'd be in an astronomical amount. I don't even use the gas that much - I rarely cook at home because it's so dirty and disgusting here (and I don't like to cook, so there's that), and my room wasn't heated that often. So, here are my questions: a) Should I bring this up with my landlord? I don't want to sound like I'm "tattling", but this was a very serious situation. Being overdue is one thing, but to the point where electric service was almost about to being cut off... that's major, and my safety could have been put at risk. What if I had medicine that needed to be refrigerated? (I don't, just saying) What should I say? b) My lease, as mentioned in the previous question, has a 30 day notice clause with no penalty. I'm trying to find another place, so could I use this situation as justification to break it a bit early? (If not, I'll just pay the full month of May and treat it as "karma" money.) c) If the gas bill(s) for the past 3 months are too high, could I negotiate with my roommate and ask that I only pay the "market rate", especially that I didn't even use gas that much? (When I first moved in, he said gas would be $10/month. I have a screenshot proving this.) I'm trying to find tenant advocacy services here in DC to help me with this, as well as a deaf services organization, but right now I'm feeling in over my head. I don't want to pay crazy amounts of money to subsidize my roommate's negligence, but I don't want to risk being taken to court, either, if he feels I didn't fairly pay my share. I have screenshots of all our conversations, etc., which should hopefully serve as proof/help my case. Somewhat irrelevant braindump: he has had a Capital BikeShare bike parked in the house for days now. I shudder to think about what he owes them. This situation is completely new to me, and the opposite of what my previous living situation was like - my landlords (who managed all the bills/utilities) created a spreadsheet with a detailed breakdown of bills, which made it easy. Everything was paid on time. Some people suggested I take over the utilities here, but no way - I'm not staying, and I don't trust my roommate to pay me back as far as I could throw him. All utilities are under his name - my landlord does not live with us. (Water is part of the rent.) This has been a huge source of anxiety for me all weekend, although I've cooled down and am now trying to find resources that can help me.

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