posted 3 days ago on metafilter
My partner's mother should have a gift, and I'm worried about sending it to her in Mexico. She hosted us in Mexico (SMA) during the Thanksgiving break. My understanding is sending it is fraught with difficulty, and it would be nice if she were not subject to form-filling-out and other exercise to receive it.My partner's mother is a charming lady with a wonderful sense of humor and a willingness to run around with us getting into trouble, so I found myself really enjoying her presence. She misses having music to play, and we talked about it. It seems that a docking station for her ipad would work for her. We looked at the Coppel store for something useful and came up empty. I would like to send something worthwhile to her, but have been scared off by horror stories about customs forms and 'lost' packages. What is the most likely way to get a package containing a nice docking station safely into her hands?

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
Jude Law is starring as Pope Pius XIII in new series The Young Pope [trailer]. Law plays 47 year old Lenny Belardo, an American, and former Archbishop of the Diocese of New York. The series also stars Diane Keaton, Cecile de France, Silvio Orlando, Javier Camara, and is directed by Paolo Sorrentino. The series is a joint production of Sky, HBO and Canal+. The Young Pope is a hit with Catholics – so why is the Vatican so silent about it? The Young Pope review: Jude Law's sleek pontiff shines in Sorrentino's Twin Peaks Of course HBO's The Young Pope will premiere on a Sunday

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
Some time after receiving bank statements, tax forms, pay stubs, firstborn child, etc., the loan officer sent an approval letter to my realtor and I thought we were all ready to go. I made an offer on a place and after a short dance it was accepted.When the lender came back a few weeks later, he said the underwriters wouldn't underwrite it. He suggested getting a co-signer or putting 20% down. He had no other ideas. Neither of those are going to happen in my world. Sounds like a bunch of crap to me, but I'm a first-time buyer. He said my score was too low (I qualify for FHA but not conventional, and there are only two condos in my city that are FHA and neither is acceptable to me, that is, I want to still be able to walk to work). He also mentioned my medical collections (several small and less than $1000 total) were impacting it as well. I had a plan to pay off a collection a month (none are over $100); tried paying off one of the collections, say it was $60, and they returned me a receipt for $61, noting it as a "partial payment." So I'm not going to play that game with them til I have time to figure out the best way to handle that. (The original creditor/company has been bought by another group.) Two questions if that's permissible 1)What does pre-approved mean if it doesn't mean pre-approved? For bonus points: Best way to pay off a series of small collections? It would be nice if they just dropped off in 7 years ('18 by my calculations) but maybe they are really impacting my score.

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
We have a relatively cheap oven model with a wire rack that slides into the oven against the porcelain walls of the oven; no bearings or anything. It's always stuck a little bit, pulling it in and out — but since we did a self-clean cycle last week, there seems to be even more friction. Is there a food-safe high-temperature grease or other lubricant that I can use to make the rack slide better?

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
Which of the European Martin Beck movies are the best?I've read all the books but only seen the American one with Walter Matthau: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martin_Beck#Films_based_on_the_novels

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
How can I buy or make a person-sized, custom-all-over-printed striped sweater by Christmas?My fellow grad students and I want to give our advisor a cool Christmas gift. Our advisor once wrote a paper on stripe patterns, and we thought it would be cool to run his algorithm and give him a (possibly-ugly-for-fun) Christmas sweater emblazoned with his stripe patterns. How should we do this? Size: We obviously don't have his measurements, but we can guess them. Materials: Don't care. Price: There are four of us, and we could probably afford $200 total. Color: We'd like to have a blue sweater with black and dark blue stripes, but any colors would work in a pinch. Pattern: We can generate the pattern ourselves on a 3D mesh, but we don't know anything about creating knitting patterns. Some possible methods: * Ideally I would like to produce a 3D model of what we want and have someone magically print it all over for a sweater for us, but nobody seems to offer printing *all over* a sweater. The closest I've found is all-over printing for a panel on the front of a sweater, which wouldn't give rise to very interesting stripe patterns. * I also looked around at custom sweater knitting services, but they all seem to cost $300+ and they require people to have placed orders months ago. (I'd be happy to pay MeFites who'd be interested in knitting this--feel free to MeMail me! You'll make a bunch of academics very happy.) * We have a friend who does computational knitting, and they have an industrial knitting machine--maybe they could knit our sweater? We'd need to figure out how to produce a pattern, though. And I have no idea how much time or yarn it would take them. * We could screen print all over a store-bought plain sweater, but I'm not sure that would work for all-over patterns. We'd also have to figure out how to discretize our stripe pattern over many sheets of printer paper. * As a last resort, we could buy fabric markers and draw on a store-bought plain sweater, but 1. That's against the spirit of computer science! 2. It wouldn't look as good. 3. The pattern would come off in the wash. Any suggestions?

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
Federal Court Justice Robin Camp, who asked a woman during a rape trial why she could not keep her legs together and called her 'the accused' several times, has been recommended to be removed from the bench, after an initial request from Alberta Justice Minister Kathleen Ganley. (The report is quite long but written in clear English.) Of the 21 allegations against him, 17 were found fully substantiated, and 2 partly. The decision was strongly written: But where judicial misconduct is rooted in a profound failure to act with impartiality and to respect equality before the law, in a context laden with significant and widespread concern about the presence of bias and prejudice, the harm to public confidence is amplified. In these circumstances, the impact of an after-the-fact commitment to education and reform as an adequate remedial measure is significantly diminished. [...] When Justice Camp's various comments are read together, an underlying and unifying theme reveals itself, namely that he regarded the evolution of the law of sexual assault (which was designed to rid the law of discredited sexist stereotypes and myths) as misguided and as a product of what he dismissed as "contemporary thinking". We do not accept that Allegation 2(a) is not evidence of biased thinking on his part. It clearly is part and parcel of his resistance to changes in the law meant to protect vulnerable witnesses, to promote women's equality, and to bring integrity to the way in which sexual assault cases are dealt with by the justice system. Taken alone, the various comments might be seen as merely an unfortunate way of expressing himself, but taken in the context of his other related utterances, it is clear that Justice Camp held a bias, whether conscious or unconscious, in the form of an antipathy towards the present laws governing sexual assault trials. [...] We conclude that, in this exchange, the Judge was advancing a discredited view that if a woman is not actively resisting or vocally objecting, she is either consenting or has some oblique motive to lure her assailant into a trap. [...] Throughout his Reasons, the Judge's numerous comments reflect the discredited rape myth that a woman can always resist a sexual assault if she really wants to. Secondly, Justice Camp's rumination to the effect that the complainant's failure to object (when the accused entered the bathroom) was "foolish" and that she's not a "total idiot" implies that a woman who does not actively resist when confronted by the prospect of a sexual assault is responsible for her own victimization. His comments reflect a classic victim-blaming attitude. [...] The complainant had testified that she was poor, was living on the street, and was struggling with drug and alcohol addictions. In our view, the Judge's unnecessary condemnations of the complainant would convey to a reasonable person that such experiences make people amoral or are equivalent to amorality. His comments reflect a prejudicial attitude towards those who are socio-economically marginalized and vulnerable, and send the message that they are less deserving of respect than other Canadians. While the Judge later commented that the complainant was entitled to the full protection of the law despite her criminal record and addiction problems, this statement does little to attenuate the harshness of his earlier comments, which, in our view, constituted misconduct. [...] Justice Camp's evidence shows that he is not as remediated as he professed. He resiled even from the evidence of Dr. Haskell and Justice McCawley regarding his sexist attitudes and gender biases, preferring instead to refer to his beliefs as "old-fashioned". Most troubling of all, when he apologized to the complainant he commented on her "fragile personality", which is language suggestive of stereotypical thinking or perhaps speaking without thinking; and h) Justice Camp's own words throughout the inquiry call into question the extent of his learning, the extent of his understanding, and his fitness to serve on the Bench. [...] We find that his impugned questions and comments and his choice of words were rooted in his antipathy towards legislative and jurisprudential reforms designed to preserve the integrity of the justice system, foster women's equality, and protect particularly vulnerable and often disadvantaged witnesses. The argument that his misconduct should be considered less harshly as other judges are equally bad was called out as arguing for a race to the bottom in the judiciary. Macleans also does some excerpting.

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
Is there a good way to defrost a side of salmon (too big for the microwave) that doesn't take very long (dinner is imminent)? Will "cut it in half and defrost by weight in the microwave" work, or is there something better I should be doing?

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
Michael James Delligatti, Creator of the Big Mac, Dies at 98 "Jim Delligatti, the McDonald's franchise owner who invented the Big Mac, died on Monday at his home in Fox Chapel, Pa. He was 98. The death was confirmed by his son Michael. Mr. Delligatti, who opened the first McDonald's in western Pennsylvania in 1957, owned about a dozen franchises in the Pittsburgh area by the mid-1960s, but he struggled to compete with the Big Boy and Burger King chains. He proposed to company executives that they add a double-patty hamburger to the McDonald's menu, something along the lines of the Big Boy, that could put a dent in sales of Burger King's Whopper."

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
Evil Kermit: The Perfect Meme For Our Terrible Times. More Evil Kermit Memes Not related to Bert is Evil.

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
I have a 7 month old baby who is an absolute delight during the day. At night, we're having a horrible time with sleep. He wakes up every two hours at least, sometimes every half hour. He seems genuinely uncomfortable/upset. Generally he doesn't need to nurse when he wakes up - just putting him back on his side (his preferred sleeping position), putting the pacifier back in, and giving him a few pats is effective - until he wakes up again. Please give me some ideas of what we can try changing to help this kid stay asleep.Baby goes to sleep very easily and always has - when he's tired, he just... goes to sleep. Especially if he has a pacifier, no fuss or trouble at all. Except for the waking up thing. Argh. Things we have tried that seem to make no difference: White noise Co-sleeping Not co-sleeping (baby in pack and play; we don't own a crib) Co-sleeping just with dad Sleeping on a parent's chest while the parent is in a recliner Sleeping on the futon - this puts his head higher than his butt, just in case of reflux. Big meal of avocado/sweet potato/etc before bed No meal (just breastmilk) Larger/more absorbent diaper for night Dressing him in only cotton, no synthetics Dressing him in an extra layer Hydrocortizone on eczema spots (husband is very eczema-prone, not a surprise that baby has it also) Tylenol / Ibuprofen (no teeth yet) Dairy elimination from Mom's diet (tried this a few months ago even though there were no symptoms of a dairy sensitivity from baby) Saline rinse / nose suction if he's a little stuffy Worth noting that this is our second kid. The first one was genuinely horrific as a baby - every time HE woke up, it took 45min+ to get him back to sleep, plus he screamed all day long and had to be worn constantly. Baby #2 is generally quite healthy, meeting all of his milestones, and right at 50th percentile for height/weight. He's very active: army crawling everywhere, sitting unassisted, and starting to pull up on stuff. His naps are generally taken in the car while we're taking big brother somewhere. Pic of the troublemaker.

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
The TSA Instagram account has your daily wacky items/batarang/doggos quota covered. The linked WaPo article highlights some of the TSA's Instagram's weirdest posts, such as the human head in a pot, the enchilada knife, and the Texas Chainsaw Massacre dummy.

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
How can I remove a large dark urine and feces stain from a hardwood floor? From a human, not a pet.A relative collapsed on the floor of their apartment recently where they remained for several days before being discovered and rescued. The person is recovering. But the area where they were laying has been stained dark brown and black by feces and urine. What would be the best way to remove the stain? Google searches turn up a few products, but do they work? And will they remove stains on wood caused by human, not pet excreta? Paramedics suggested washing the stain with milk to remove the odor. That was done, and the smell is almost completely gone. But the stain remains. If you have direct experience and can offer advice, that would be greatly appreciated. If you are speculating and have never personally tried to remove this kind of stain, I respectfully request that you please say so in your answer. Thanks in advance.

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
This was me. We've living apart, not really communicating, and still married. Now what?He moved out a little over a month ago and contact has been minimal. We talk on the phone maybe 15 minutes a week and it's mostly been checking in to say hi, how are you, happy birthday, happy Thanksgiving, you have mail here, etc. He's been a combination of cold, detached, and weepy. Occasionally he emails me a news story or a jokey link. I'm a wreck but playing it cool in our interactions. Being kind, upbeat, chatty without sharing much, conversational in a superficial way, trying very hard not to fall apart and/or explode. I have lots of support thanks to great friends/family and my therapist. I'm working hard to bring my best self forward in all of this and find other ways/places to express and process my hurt and anger and grief and the million other things I'm feeling. He's the one who wants to divorce, but there's been no discussion of moving forward with it. Months ago we talked about filing a summary dissolution in CA (we've been married less than 5 years, no kids, no property, no debts) and we'll need to complete and file that paperwork together. I realize it hasn't been long, but having this space and hearing him choke up on the phone and seeing his name in my inbox activates tiny pangs of hope, and there really isn't any hope here. Even if he did change his mind about the divorce, things would be have to be hugely different and it would require work that he's already made pretty clear he's not interested in doing. There's a part of me that desperately wants to get this over with ASAP so I can move on. My therapist asks me if I feel ready to go forward with the divorce. I don't, but I can't imagine ever feeling "ready." What does "ready" even look like in this scenario? How long would I have to wait to feel "ready?" But I also feel it would be unfair for me to have to initiate this painful process when this is something he wanted. I've already done the lion's share of the emotional labor in this relationship. It makes me feel bitter and resentful. Any advice from those who have been there (and those who haven't) would be appreciated. I read and re-read the comments in my last post on a weekly basis and it's so helpful for me. Thank you!

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
Ars Technica: "Humans began making paint and glue at roughly the same time with the same tools. Evidence from a cave in eastern Ethiopia has revealed something extraordinary about the origins of symbolic thought among humans." "Forty-thousand years ago, Porc-Epic Cave was surrounded by lush grassland full of lakes and rivers. It was home to a thriving community of people who devoted considerable time to processing ochre, a reddish powder used for variety of things including paint. Writing in PLoS One, anthropologists Daniela Eugenia Rosso, Africa Pitarch Martí, and Francesco d'Errico describe how they worked with the National Museum of Ethiopia to analyze these Middle Stone Age people's ochre-making tools. What they found was this workshop's artisans produced a far more complicated array of substances than anyone had understood before. Some were used for art and decoration, and others were used for engineering better weapons."

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
On November 28, Chapecoense, a small club from Santa Catarina in Brazil was boarding a flight headed to Medellín, where they would face Atlético Nacional in the first leg of the Copa Sudamericana (the CONMEBOL second-tier club trophy). A few hours later, the day ended in tragedy as the plane crashed on the mountains outside the host city, killing 76 of the 81 on board. The flight included the squad and staff, but also 21 journalists covering the big game, and early reports claim it ran out of fuel on the approach and was facing electrical problems. As the city mourns, the world pays their tributes, with words of comfort from "brothers in tragedy" Manchester United and Torino, with all top-level mid-week matches being preceded by a moment of silence. In a showing of fair play, several brazilian teams have lined up free loan offers, and petitioned the Brazilian Federation to protect Chape from relegation for the next three years, while Atlético Nacional also pressed CONMEBOL to declare their opponents as winners of the competition.

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
In 1969, Donald Crowhurst fooled the world into believing he was completing the fastest non-stop solo circumnavigation of the globe. Then his boat was found, empty and adrift in the Atlantic.

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
Sweet fiancé and I are getting married in a park, in July. Seating is extremely limited. How do I work this out? Our ceremony (which should be 10-15 minutes long) has seating for probably half the guests, with plenty of room to stand/lean on other things. On one of those wedding message boards, I was told that this is horrifically rude, and I'm a terrible person. Very helpful. Let's just say for argument purposes that our ceremony location is not able to be changed. [It is covered in case of rain] Do I need to put this on our invitations in case people just want to come to the seated reception? Or should I just tell people by word of mouth? Or is it okay to ask our coordinator to make sure that people who need seats (elderly, pregnant, or who can't stand for 15 minutes) get them? [NYC specific. It's the big park in the middle of Manhattan. Most people walk everywhere, and will walk to our reception a mile away.]

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
I want to put some high end (or at least very effective) skin-care potions on my holiday gift wish list this year. I know nothing about this stuff. Need some specific recommendations and/or caveats.So it used to be true, some 20 years ago when I started looking at skin care products, that they were pretty much just mineral oil in various forms. There was nothing that was going to really penetrate the dermis; they might lubricate, but they weren't going to do anything about wrinkles, skin tone etc. These days, I'm hearing about stuff that might actually work. I'd like my skin to be better, and while I'm not going to waste money on false hopes, I'd love some personal recommendations for products you find have actually worked. I'm a 40ish woman and these are the things I'd like to fix: EYES: * I have omnipresent dark circles, which are a function of my pigmentation (not of lack of rest, hydration, etc.) What, if anything, can I do about that? * I don't have crow's feet yet; can I forestall them with anything topical? NOSE: * visible sebaceous filaments, so gross. Oil cleansing maybe reduces slightly but not much. CHEEKBONE AREA: * starting to have some age spotting here, still faint. Would like more even tone. Overall, I want smooth, glowing, even skin dammit. Smooth. Glowing. Even. (Was it ever smooth and glowing? Not sure. I got compliments on my skin in my 30s, after the acne had calmed down.) I still get the occasional pimple, bleh. I should note that I do have access to a dermatologist so if there are products available by prescription only, I can get them. I had one prescribe some Retin A a while ago, but it didn't really seem to do anything for my face, and now my insurance won't cover it anyway. Currently I use a very basic oil cleansing regimen (just sunflower oil) to clean, and Eucerin SPF moisturizer every day (which, considering the dark spots I'm seeing, is apparently not enough.) I bought a L'Oreal charcoal facial mask in the hope that it would reduce sebaceous filaments but it didn't do anything. Tell me what has worked for you!

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
I have a therapist (but won't be able to get into see him for a month), I do CBT and mindfulness and other useful things but the last 6 weeks have blown my stress levels sky-high (over 360 on that psychological scale thing). I'm a late diagnosed aspie with a heaping of lifelong social anxiety on the side. I have some repetitive intrusive thoughts that I can't dislodge and I need your gentle help and logic please.  I'm moving (13 Dec) because my landlord declined to renew my lease (supposedly because he's going to renovate but I did breach the lease by letting my son move in without asking permission and they took 2 years to notice) AND because i needed to be certain not to have to move in the recovery period after my hysterectomy, which I havent scheduled yet because this. I put in notice to vacate my flat on Monday (its Thursday - gold coast australia) and it was advertised by Tuesday and real estate agent has advised me people are going to be looking through the mess on Friday (though she didn't say mess). It's a mess. I've taken today (Thursday) off work to try and make it hygenic at least. My major problematic thoughts are below: 1. Omg omg omg strangers are going to come through my filthy home in 36 hours with overgrown garden  (none of the garden guys I've contacted have got back to me) and judge me. Their negative judgement of me is accurate and reasonable. Therefore I am a worthless person and should be shunned by everyone (flippant words, but accurate to my feelings - that intense and  overblown). 2. The real estate agent is not going to be fair about the bond. The landlord will be renovating and repainting anyway (he planned to before i moved in 3 years ago, he gets a once off tax break if he does it in next 6 months - government stimulus policy). In fact, my neighbour rang the real estate when he heard my lease wasn't being renewed to see if he could move his kids in next door and they told him that the place wasn't going to be for rent because reno. So, i said to agent, look I'm going to clean, of course, but if place is being reno'd, can I skip the oven, because it'll be tossed right? And immediately after that my place was advertised on line and I was told no reno. So anyway, wear and tear and 3 years of being a crap housekeeper, they're going to ding me and probably keep my entire bond but that doesn't bother me so much as the imagined judgement. See #1. I try to tell myself that I don't know these people and it doesn't matter what they think as i already have secured a new place to move into, in a better location, with a dishwasher (yay!) and without my son (who has been bludging off me for a year and refusing to get a job or do any housework). But nope, i can't sleep, my chest is tight, in between the worry of all the things I have to get done, my approaching hysterectomy surgery and 2 months without income, my deteriorating relationships with both my adult kids, the rehomed kitties, my broken washing machine and the hassle of hanwashing everything, my dwindling life savings, my new thyroid problem, the 4 month contract I was counting on falling through, having to talk (oh crap) to people on the phone (like removalists) and then talk to them in person (gah), having to meet new neighbours and remember what they look like for the next time they talk to me, it's just all i think about. So can you help me reset my disordered thinking processes please, particularly around judgey mcjudgerson landlord/real estate agent and random strangers going through my home (i won't even be here when they do).

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
Joe Dever, best known as the author of the Lone Wolf fantasy gamebooks, has died. For those looking to remember his legacy, Project Aon has a wealth of Lone Wolf material including the Grey Star series and the once-rare Magnamund Companion. It also contains some of Dever's other gamebooks. The Lone Wolf series, which had gone out of print in the late 90s, saw a resurgence of popularity over the last 10 years, leading to an pen-and-paper RPG adaptation, a video game combining RPG elements and a visual novel, adaptations for Kindle, and culminating in the long-awaited publication of book 29, The Storms of Chai, earlier this year. (Previously)

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
Rescue operations are currently underway for a manatee stuck in a storm drain in Jacksonville, FL. Watch live now!

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
Being around actual people over Thanksgiving weekend showed me exactly where my weaknesses are in conversation. While I'm keenly interested in others' lives, I have no idea how to express such without feeling like I'm conducting an interrogation over pumpkin pie. I do fairly well with strangers - where are you from, what do you do, school, interests, kids, etc., but with my loved ones, I have no earthly idea where to start. "What's going on at work?" only takes you so far, especially when either it's all over Facebook or you're addressing a SAHM. "What are you reading these days?" doesn't work if they're strictly tv people. Politics is strictly off-limits since I'm the only liberal in the bunch. Social anxiety has me terrified of asking the wrong thing. Help?

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
Why don't duvet sets come with a fitted sheet?I'm trying to switch from a fitted sheet/flat sheet/comforter setup to a fitted sheet/duvet bed. All the duvet sets I've been able to find, however, only come with pillowcases and the duvet cover. I don't expect them to come with the duvet itself, but why isn't there something to go on the mattress? Are you supposed to sleep on the mattress pad? Or make yourself into a duvet burrito? Sheet sets for comforters include flat and fitted sheets so what's going on here?

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posted 3 days ago on metafilter
This week, reports the Charlottetown Guardian, police in Kensington, Prince Edward Island threatened to force impaired drivers to listen to Nickelback while locked in the back of a police cruiser. But, reports the UK Guardian, "they're hardly the first band to be turned into a punchline that doesn't require a set-up. Sting's career has suffered for years from the notion that he is some kind of tantric sex god, based on a throwaway comment he made in a 1990 interview."

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