Archive for Table for One

They won’t care if the coffee sucks

Sometimes you just shake your head and wonder “What’s next?”

A firm in Geneva plans to open a café where customers can enjoy oral sex while they sip their morning coffee. Not everyone is happy with the idea.

The idea for the sex café has been brewing for several months, Bradley Charvet of the Geneva firm Facegirl told Geneva’s Le Matin newspaper recently.

Modelled on similar establishments in Thailand, the proposed Geneva café would add a new dimension to the sex trade in the city of the Protestant reformer Calvin.

Put simply, the business model would see men ordering a coffee and using an iPad to select a prostitute they want to perform oral sex on them. They would then sit at the bar.

“In five or ten minutes, it’s all over,” Charvet explained to Le Matin.

Thailand?

[insert “Bangkok” joke here]

Base price is 60 Swiss francs (about €55). Charvet’s probably right about that time frame, so there should be a steady, um, stream of customers.

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Sex and the ethnicity

Can’t get the babe you want? Let them build one for you:

I am a Hispanic guy but some people think I look Asian or at least part Asian. I am attracted to Latinas and white women but it seems that these women prefer other races of men. White women only date black men when dating interracially and the beautiful Latinas I like prefer white men. I feel like I would be swimming against the current trying to get these women to like me and honestly I don’t want to have to put in 3 times the effort as men of other races to get the women I like. Sex robots should become mainstream in the next decade and the technology for them seems to be improving. I am thinking that I should just stay single forever and get a sex robot. I can customize this sex robot to have the skin color and hair color I want. They could make it look like a beautiful light skinned Latina or white woman. I am tired of being racially inferior and not being able to get the women I like because of this.

Most guys who aren’t getting any usually find some excuse, and this guy’s excuse is, um, being “racially inferior.” I don’t think so. And while he bewails the “current,” he’s trapped in an undercurrent of sexism: it’s okay for him to have his preferences, but apparently not okay for the women to have what he imagines are theirs.

Furthermore, I have to wonder how he calculated “3 times the effort.” If he got turned down twice, he succeeded once, n’est-ce pas?

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And that’s just how they roll

I’ve never aspired to the life of an autojourno. Driving lots of cars might be a whole lot of fun, but that’s the part you hear about: all the little ancillary duties, I suspect, would turn things into work in a great big hurry.

That said, I get to envy Neal Pollack in the July Road & Track, partly because he gets some seat time in a Rolls-Royce Dawn, the new drophead (don’t call it a mere “convertible”) that costs only three and a half times as much as my house, but mostly because of the occupant of the Dawn’s second seat:

My drive companion for the day was a Spanish lifestyle journalist who is also an architect and a former ballerina. Done up in a headscarf and glamorous La Dolce Vita glasses, she sat beside me luxuriantly.

This sort of description, regardless of its level of accuracy, invariably drags my heart over to the nearest abandoned mineshaft, haunted by the ghost of Rick Springfield.

I’m allowing Jack Baruth 48 hours to tell me just how full of it I am.

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Clearly misaddressed

In a spamlet received last night, “Carley” (not her real name) asks if I have any interest in a “sexy depraved pussycat.”

More deprived than depraved, I am, but that’s another matter. Anyway:

Hi stallion, this is your girl. I am Lakisha.

I want you to bonk me as a little bitch. I bleed juice with desire to feel such sex!

Don’t forget that I’m waiting with impatience for a depraved man on this site.

Again: more deprived than depraved, “Lakisha” (not your real name).

The only really amusing aspect of this item, really, was the domain name used, or feigned, by the sender: megabulkmessage207.com. Due to a most lamentable dearth of dubious sites — only one link offered, and it wasn’t even obscured — this thing failed to break 2.5 on Spam Score, where 5 is my normal threshold and 25-30 is entirely too common. To borrow a phrase, this thing doesn’t even leak juice, let alone bleed it.

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Life along these lines

I know them well, and not just because I did even better on the math portion of the SAT than the verbal portion:

(I did, however, resist the effort to reply “Cosine.”)

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Lost in trans-lation

Just what are they telling us in this TV listing?

I knew the birth rate in the EU was declining, but I had no idea it might be due to something like this.

(Via Will Truman.)

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Or perhaps somewhere in between

Robert Stacy McCain offers several bits of advice to young women who might be frightened by various feminist manifestos, of which this is the last:

Get yourself a husband — Preferably one who lives in someplace like Alabama or Oklahoma. The comparatively low cost of living in rural America makes it possible to do very old-fashioned things like getting married, having children and driving pickup trucks. Also, in rural America, a woman can keep a firearm handy so she doesn’t have to worry about “sexual violence EVERY SINGLE DAY.” (Scarlett O’Hara: “I can shoot straight, if I don’t have to shoot far.”)

I know a pretty fair number of women — or, perhaps, a number of pretty, fair women — who can wield a gun with more grace and/or accuracy than I can.

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Literary inversion

Now here’s a pitch I’m surprised I hadn’t seen before:

Currently:

  • Classic literature is filled with memorable male protagonists
  • These works of art contribute to patriarchal gender norms
  • Everyone grows up reading about worlds where men have the knowledge, adventure, power, and personal struggle

It doesn’t have to be that way!

“Call me Trishna,” begins their Melville rewrite. And rewriting is what they do: they take an old classic (and, of course, public-domain) novel with a male protagonist and flip the genders throughout. I spent a few bucks on their inversion of H. G. Wells’ The Invisible Woman, so to speak, and while there was an occasional failure of whatever search-and-replace scheme they were using, it’s still a very good story, and it’s not really any less believable with Grisella instead of Griffin. I would expect this to be the case with others in their ongoing series, though I expect the main audience to be the hardcore feminist for whom everything on earth is the fault of those tall guys with the dangly bits. Consider this an amusing side theater in the Gender Wars, and feel free to give the stories a try if you’re curious. (Frankly, I’m keen to see A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Woman, probably not by Joyce James, due out this summer.)

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Everdeen possibilities

Reportedly, Jennifer Lawrence is having trouble getting dates, and Francis W. Porretto suggests some reasons why:

Quite a lot of “regular” men would never dare to approach a major star like Jennifer Lawrence. Unfortunately, the overwhelming majority of the men in her “peer group” — i.e., other celebrities — are users and untrustworthy philandering assholes with vacuum for brains. Fame can do that to you.

Still to be determined: whether showbiz makes assholes of people, or if assholes are somehow drawn to showbiz.

A good man will have a career of his own. How many such would be willing to abandon their careers for a shot at the affections of a celebrity? Celebrities are notoriously flighty, which is part of the reason most celebrity romances are brief and go down in flames. That’s what made Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward so noteworthy.

See also Swift, T.: “So it’s gonna be forever / Or it’s gonna go down in flames.”

Then there’s the admittedly atypical example of Carl Dean, who runs an asphalt-paving operation in Nashville; he’s been married to Dolly Parton since May 1966. Then again, Dolly was still a long way from superstardom in May 1966. Maybe that’s the trick for the J-Laws out there: fall in love before you get your Entertainment Weekly cover.

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Not wasting the pretty

The fictional “Carol Van Meter-McDougal” comes up with something with the ring of truth, or so it seems to me anyway:

[F]or generations, men objectified women by assessing value to them based on their physical appearance. During more patriarchal times, guys were the ones who determined which women were pretty. But since the feminist movement finally gave women the right to objectify ourselves according to our own standards, there are now two kinds of pretty: guy-pretty and girl-pretty.

Guy-pretty women are the kind of women whom men want to be with, and are therefore women who bear traits that men find exemplary in women, traits that are generally associated with sexuality — pouty lips, a curvy figure, and a general “come hither” look, or at least a look that doesn’t scream “I smell like cats.”

Girl-pretty women, on the other hand, are the kind of women that other women want to be like, and are therefore women bearing traits that we ladies find exemplary in ourselves, traits like a fit but not surgically enhanced body, eyes that say “confident but not arrogant,” and a general aura of “flirty but not skanky.”

On this latter scale, Jennifer Aniston is ne plus ultra, though, speaking in my capacity as a guy, I find that she doesn’t do a thing for me. (Okay, make that “she doesn’t do many things for me.”)

I concede, however, that I wouldn’t know a come-hither look if it were telegraphed, closed-captioned, and explained in Braille.

(Title from “Don’t Waste the Pretty” by Allison Iraheta. Not sure which of the two types of pretty she might be.)

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Kneel before Scheherazade

Master the art, and more than a thousand and one wondrous nights shall be yours:

Guys: Are your pick-up lines no longer working? Well, here’s a new approach you may want to try. Go over to that attractive woman, introduce yourself, and tell her in a quiet but authoritative voice: It’s been a quiet week in Lake Wobegon…

That’s right: Spin a yarn. Newly published research finds women view men as more attractive potential long-term mates if they are good storytellers.

“Stories are not just mere conversation,” write Melanie Green of the University of Buffalo and John Donahue of the University of North Carolina. “Storytelling ability appears to increase (a man’s) perceived status, and thus helps men attract long-term partners.”

As a Bard with -6 Charisma, I am not likely to achieve results of this type.

What’s more, this is not supposed to work in the opposite direction. Per the abstract:

Results suggested that only women’s attractiveness assessments of men as a long-term date increased for good storytellers. Storytelling ability did not affect men’s ratings of women nor did it affect ratings of short-term partners.

Color me “outlier.” Then again, I may be remembering Sir Richard Burton’s description of Scheherazade:

[She] had perused the books, annals and legends of preceding Kings, and the stories, examples and instances of bygone men and things; indeed it was said that she had collected a thousand books of histories relating to antique races and departed rulers. She had perused the works of the poets and knew them by heart; she had studied philosophy and the sciences, arts and accomplishments; and she was pleasant and polite, wise and witty, well read and well bred.

Wiser than I, surely. Still, one of us has to be the brains of the operation, and I’m not particularly adept at it.

(Via Fark.)

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Who’s been sleeping in my bed?

If you’re the suspicious, distrusting type, this may well make you more so:

A mattress company out of Spain is marketing a new smart mattress, brilliantly named “Smartress,” that detects whenever the bed is in “use.” As you likely realize, the main purpose of this is to see if your partner is cheating on you.

And the video promoting the smart mattress isn’t shy about that functionality:

“With Lover Detection System.” Heh.

Of course, this device can’t tell you if your unfaithful partner is doing the deed anywhere else: only in that particular bed.

(Via Nancy Friedman, who doesn’t think that name is so all-fired “brilliant.”)

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Overlooked too often

This particular story is somewhat disturbing:

Lauren Buniva explains what’s going on here:

The video, originally posted on YouTube, featured emotional anecdotes of “leftover women,” or those unmarried after 25, in China. These “leftover women” receive shameful treatment as well as intense familial and societal pressure for not being married as they “should be.” The video shows the women interacting with their families and includes some of the brutally harsh and hurtful comments that parents of these “leftover women” spit out regularly. The storytelling is enhanced by compelling visuals, contrasting scenes from the young women’s modern lives with images of traditional China: families, parading dragons and the marriage market.

The marriage market becomes the an important feature of the video; it is both the scene that epitomizes the women’s frustration, embarrassment, and societal isolation, but also where they eventually stand up to their parents and reaffirm their own lifestyle choices. The marriage market is where Chinese parents display their children as marriage potential, detailing intimate information like their height, weight, salary, values and personality.

A meet market, or maybe something that just sounds like “meet market.”

SK-II, headquartered in Japan but owned by Procter & Gamble, decided to do something about it:

SK-II took over a marriage market, and did so beautifully, by posting photos of hundreds of “leftover women” accompanied with simple statements that assert their desire for independence and self-driven happiness. Viewers are then shown the parents’ tearful acceptance of their daughters, coming to the realization that these “leftover women” are actually outstanding, confident, beautiful and something to be proud, not ashamed, of.

Apparently this campaign is running through the Singapore office; the SK-II US site has no mention of if whatsoever.

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Four legs good

This is, as noted, an actual ad:

A word of warning, pal: Don’t let her borrow your razor.

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Down in the boondocks

“People put me down,” sang Billy Joe Royal, “’cause that’s the side of town I was born in.” And maybe that’s good for his existing romantic relationship, given the problematic nature of relationships with wealthy guys:

Turns out, if you give a man some money, he’ll think his partner is less attractive.

Researchers based out of Beijing Normal University in China invited 182 heterosexual college students (121 women, 61 men) in committed relationships into the lab and primed them to feel either rich or poor using two different forms of a questionnaire about financial status. Afterwards, participants rated their satisfaction with their romantic partners across various attributes, including job prospects, family background, and physical attractiveness. The ratings were completed on a 1 to 9 scale (1 = does not match my ideal at all, 9 = completely matches my ideal). Subjects also answered demographic questions about gender, age, and monthly income.

When the researchers examined the subjects’ answers, they found that men primed to feel wealthy were less satisfied with their partners’ physical attractiveness than men primed to feel poor. The difference was highly significant, a full point on the 9-point scale.

The women? They displayed no differences. None.

The only explanation I can think of for this is Miss Cellania’s: “With a few more bucks, they think they can do better.”

Source: Li YM, Li J, Chan DK-S and Zhang B (2016) When Love Meets Money: Priming the Possession of Money Influences Mating Strategies. Front. Psychol. 7:387. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2016.00387

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You need to let it go

Robert Stacy McCain offers advice to the younger fellows among us:

Do not ever imagine that you can evade a woman’s radar in terms of what she wants.

One way to be a loser is to waste your time trying to overcome a woman’s instantaneous default “no.” You could spend years arguing with losers on pickup artist (PUA) forums about tactics, but you are never going to change human nature. Every woman’s default response is “no,” and if you can’t cope with rejection — if you don’t learn to walk away the minute she signals disinterest — you are squandering valuable time and energy.

Some guys (the upper 10% or 15% of overall attractiveness) can score reliably enough in almost any pickup scenario that they don’t really need “tactics” at all. What the rest of you fellows must learn is to stop wasting time trying to convert a “no” to a “yes,” or brooding over your failures.

Guys, if you’re at a frat party, when you approach a girl, understand this: She has sized you up — evaluating you in terms of your desirability — before you even say a word to her. Therefore, if her response to your opening line is not a total green-light reaction, take it in stride and move on. Just remember there are 3.5 billion women on this planet.

Maintain your cool, young man. Don’t flip out, don’t get angry, and don’t let yourself become demoralized by the fact that this girl shot you down. Just keep on blowing down the road, Mister Breeze.

Perhaps needless to say, Meghan Trainor was available for comment, though not a favorable comment.

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Singing a sad Saskatoon

I don’t know if I could get this scheme to work:

The sexual maturation process, like maturation in general, is wildly variable. Worse, social skills usually lag woefully behind sexual development — the gawky, dorky, yet super-horny teenager is a stereotype for a reason. If, like me, you were born in the Jurassic, and if, again like me, you were one of those gawky, dorky, yet super-horny teenagers, your parents probably compared your fumbling attempts to get a date with a dog chasing cars — you have no idea why you do it, and you wouldn’t have the first clue what to do with one if you caught it.

And that’s the beauty of the Canadian girlfriend. If your social skills don’t sync up with your raging hormones, you can get yourself a little breathing room in your peer group by claiming you met this great girl on summer vacation … but, alas, she lives in Canada, and even though you were totally this close to scoring, she had to go back to, like, Ottawa … but she writes you every week, and dude, this Christmas vacation, it’s gonna be epic…

As a teenager, I was gawky and dorky, though not super-horny; I had desires, I suppose, but at no time did I expect them ever to be addressed, so the subject wasn’t uppermost in my mind, and besides the glands weren’t secreting, or something.

My one adolescent experience, if you want to call it that, with a female of the Canadian persuasion proved to be remarkably unrewarding. She was about my age, she lived in faraway Lethbridge, Alberta, and for one or two exchanges, we were pen pals. Then she asked me for a current photo, and I duly sent one.

I never heard from her again.

Okay, fine. I can take a hint. Not everyone can be an object of desire.

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Hung up on minor details

Cover of Deliciously Decandent by Fiona MoodleyThe wondrous world of seemingly random retweeting, which of course it isn’t — nothing on Twitter is truly random — landed a promo for this book in my stream, and while I admit to partaking of the occasional romance novel, by which is meant it’s probably no more than a third of what I read, give or take a percentage point here or there, I think this one might be just a hair beyond my specifications. The story goes like this:

He is every woman’s fantasy. He can have any woman but her. He will do anything just to have her in his bed were she belongs.

She is a widow and has a little girl. She cannot afford to be promiscuous but she is drawn to him like a moth to a flame.

When they come together it is explosive. Sparks don’t just fly it dominates. Can he keep her in his bed or will she run away?

Points for noting that promiscuity has its price, if not necessarily in an obvious currency. But how do we know if it’s truly “decandent,” whatever the heck that means?

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Drawing attention

I have no idea what to make of this:

Yahoo Answers screenshot: I think my boyfriend is going to leave me for an anime character?

Argument in favor of the premise:

My boyfriend and I have been together for 4 years, recently he started getting interested in anime. It was all fine and stuff until he began getting obsessed with a character from Bleach named Orihime. I tried watching the show with him, but every time his “waifu” comes on screen he starts squealing and getting really excited and saying “LOOK, IT’S MY WAIFU” He always compares me to her, like the other night I asked him to do the dishes and he said “Orihime wouldn’t make me do the dishes.” And then proceeded to go back to watching Bleach. It’s gotten so bad that he won’t even cuddle me at night, he cuddles his body pillow with a picture of Orihime on it. And I think i’ve caught him masturbating to naked drawings of Orihime. I don’t understand what she has that I don’t, maybe it’s because she has bigger breasts than me. I don’t know what to do, anime is ruining our relationship. I just want my boyfriend back, please help.

First thought: Can you cook? Because Orihime surely can’t:

Her cooking style can be described as very bad, disgusting, or, more often strange to the point that aside from Rangiku Matsumoto, no one would think it delectable, and is one of the running jokes in the series.

But there may be no cure. And as Tara Strong, speaking voice of Twilight Sparkle, for whom I’d dump you in a Manehattan minute, has said: “It’s ok to be in love with an animated drawing as long as you understand they cannot put out.”

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Sort of winging it

From “Planet TAD,” 2-10-16 (MAD #538, April):

I know the story of “The Ugly Duckling” is supposed to be uplifting, but let’s face it: it’s not really a story about an ugly duckling. It’s a story about a perfectly nice-looking swan. The moral of the story is basically: “If people don’t find you attractive, cross your fingers and hope that you’re secretly a different species entirely.”

I suspect more people have at least entertained this idea than are willing to admit.

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I blame Lord Byron

Now here’s a comparison I didn’t come up with, but probably should have. The Byronic hero as Sexy Douchecanoe:

Rochester is rich and arrogant and moody as hell, and he has peculiar ideas on how to court a woman, including disguising himself as a gypsy to try and uncover Jane’s secret feelings towards him, while also attempting to incite jealousy by lying to Jane about his supposed engagement with Blanche Ingram. He’s very secretive, too, as people tend to be when they’ve indefinitely imprisoned their mad wives upstairs in the attic.

Reading Jane Eyre wasn’t actually a tortuous affair, mostly because I rather liked Jane and, to my surprise, found that she displayed a surprising amount of power and agency in their relationship, despite the inequality of their social positions. (It also helps that Rochester is not quite as terrible to Jane on a day-to-day basis as some of the other men I’ll discuss today.) Yet I was still quite happy to see that, despite loving him, Jane leaves Mr. Rochester after finding out about Bertha, showing a welcome amount of self-respect that, unfortunately, goes by the wayside when she returns to our brooding hero at the end of the story. Rather conveniently, poor Bertha has died in Jane’s absence; meanwhile, according to every analysis I’ve ever read, Rochester is wholly redeemed of his faults and deeds when, during a fire, he loses his sight and one hand saving his servants’ lives, something that might mean more to me if his servants had been the people he’d wronged in the first place. Rochester does absolutely nothing to atone to Jane for how he treated her, and thus I find myself completely unmoved by their supposedly happy ending. He has done nothing to deserve her love, loyalty, or care.

Moving out on the “Worse than Rochester” axis, we find Maxim de Winter of Rebecca:

This novel was definitely a challenge to read, what with the way I had to keep taking breaks to hit my head against a desk as the second Mrs. de Winter trembles and quavers and continuously obsesses over whether her husband is still in love with his dead wife. I understand that Maxim saved our unnamed narrator from a lousy living situation with her former employer and all, but her complete lack of self-esteem and refusal to stand up for herself is just maddening. Still, you’d like to think if something will clue you into the fact that your husband doesn’t deserve you, it’s finding out that he shot and killed his first wife.

It’s almost enough to make you want to set fire to Manderley.

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I’m so young and you’re so old

Paul Anka, maybe, could have gotten away with that line. I never could, and I certainly can’t now.

Still, imputed age can present some philosophical difficulties:

I’m throwing this open, mostly because I don’t have a satisfactory explanation other than “Love is eternally young,” which sounds more platitudinous than practical.

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Personal logiene

As distinguished from “hygiene,” which is apparently not a factor here:

For those of us who are unhappily single, it can sometimes feel we’ve tried every trick in the book to find that special someone. If connecting over movies, books, or coffee has never panned out, there’s still one more thing you can try: smell.

Smell Dating is the creation of artists Tega Brain and Sam Lavigne, and works to match people up based on smell. Specifically, their smell after having not showered for three days. Really.

While the process may not be everyone’s cup of tea, it’s probably the most basic measure of attraction that exists. For $25, the participant gets a t-shirt, wears it for 72 consecutive hours, and sends it back. They’re then sent the t-shirts of ten other participants who also haven’t showered, and sniff away.

One might think that common sense — or common scents — would discourage potential participants.

Give the creators credit, though: they have the temerity to bill the service as “the first mail odor dating service,” and they’re actually using a .dating domain, the first such I’ve seen. So far they haven’t expanded beyond NYC, but it’s just a matter of time — hot, sweaty, crammed-into-close-quarters time.

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Words that gladden the heart

Or maybe some place a bit lower down. Francis W. Porretto, linking to this collection of Utterly Romantic verbiage from stage and screen and story, offers a sampling of “well-proven romantic lines that really ought to have been considered” but somehow never seem to be. I’m at least partially sure that “Yes, I do have five large, empty closets. Why do you ask?” would have worked with some women I know.

Allegedly this will draw the attention of the male:

Axe print ad featuring double-jointed therapist

Although I do think it needs the visuals as much as the quotation.

(Yes, I have posted this before.)

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The stuff of nightmares

I’ve already gone into entirely too much detail regarding my Valentine’s Day-connected trauma, and it’s comparatively trivial compared to some. In fact, I’d say that if you dream of things like this, at the very least you should probably lay off the early-evening cocktails:

The octopus at the Seattle Aquarium won’t be getting any love this Valentine’s Day.

Each Valentine’s Day the Aquarium invites people to watch the sea creatures mate, but this year the chance to watch some 8-armed nooky has been called off.

Aquarium staff say they’re afraid that their male octopus — a 70-pound cephalopod named Kong — is too big for the females who are 30 to 40 pounds, and he may eat them.

And so Kong, faced with rejection by forces beyond his control, will return to Puget Sound, where his life will dissolve into bitterness and/or loneliness:

Octopuses only live about three or four years and mate once at the end of their lives.

Then they die.

Just in case you thought your life was depressing. And no, the Pacific Northwest tree octopus cannot serve as a substitute.

(Via Neal Stephenson.)

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Undeliverable as addressed

There are, to be sure, certain expectations one must meet on the feast of St Valentine. And as always, I have failed to do so.

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More snippy, less Clippy

One need not have seen Her to realize that some guys are inclined to come on to anything they recognize as female, even if she’s — um, it’s — only an algorithm. Microsoft’s new digital assistant is disinclined to take crap from said guys:

Microsoft’s Deborah Harrison told CNN that when the company launched their own assistant Cortana in 2014, a lot of the questions she was asked related to her sex life. Seriously, it turns out you just have to be coded to sound female for people to feel entitled to you sexually.

According to Harrison, though, Cortana is not going to accept this kind of behaviour. As one of the writers behind Cortana’s dialogue in the US, Harrison is responsible for the jokes and responses users hear when they talk to the assistant. And that includes the responses they hear when they decide to be inappropriate. At the ReWork Virtual Assistant Summit in San Francisco Harrison said “If you say things that are particularly assholeish to Cortana, she will get mad. That’s not the kind of interaction we want to encourage.”

How mad is she?

If you ask “Will you date me?” she’ll respond “I know you know this, but I’m saying it anyway: I’m in a phone.” If you tell her to kiss you, she’ll reply “Hold up, chief. Let’s not go there.”

And fergoshsakes, don’t ask her what she’s wearing.

I dunno. This sounds — well, “testy” is clearly the wrong word — less than thoroughly pissed off. Still, the same theory that says you don’t want to date someone who treats a restaurant’s wait staff like crap would indicate that you don’t want to date someone who treats Cortana like crap.

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Coming infractions

On Valentine’s Day, the last thing I want or need to hear is — well, anything from this list, though this specific example is perhaps the most galling:

“You should try to find a date! You know, so you’re not alone.”

Because, you know, it would never occur to someone to try to find a date any other time of the year.

The one saving grace in all this is that the 14th this year falls on a Sunday, so those fortunate enough to be able to partake of late-night debauchery will pay for it dearly Monday morning.

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The competition is fierce

Fauxcountry News, which is to Charleston (South Carolina) what The Lost Ogle is to Oklahoma City, recently ran this piece which I believe to be at least somewhat satirical:

Charleston is well-known for winning best city awards from various travel and tourism magazines, but now Charleston has earned a new honor. Stylish Woman Magazine has selected Charleston as the #1 city with the most beautiful women who must settle for complete douchebags.

Editor-in-Chief of Stylish Woman Corrin Mason said it was an easy choice when all was said and done. “We visited a lot of cities,” said Mason. “But within one hour of touring Charleston, it became abundantly clear this city was the winner. I’ve never seen so many hot women paired with such arrogant asswipes.”

It’s purely a matter of demographics:

Charleston is well-known for having a 2-to-1 female-to-male population ratio. The gender discrepancy leads to the phenomenon known as The Musical Chairs Effect on the dating scene. In your early 20’s, the music starts and all the decent, good-looking guys are immediately snatched up. As the music continues playing into your late 20’s, the remaining population of single men are claimed and married in progressive order from “he’s okay” to “meh.” When women hit their early 30’s, they’re forced to date one of the leftover douchebags before the music stops and they become a crazy cat lady.

It’s been 47 years since I was a resident of the Holy City, but even back then, there was feminine pulchritude in dazzling profusion. I didn’t reach full douchery, however, until long after I’d left.

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Plange this

This landed in the mailbox, and provided small amusement for a short period of time. Assume [sic] throughout:

I want you, Handsome! I want to come to you and surrender to you all without the end)) I will be like a fire. It’ll light your torch of passion and we’ll delve into the world of illusions and fabulous pleasure. This pleasure will be so nice for us. We’ll be in the bed with you, and we will do some crazy things)) I’ll slide along your body. My hair and nipples will tickle your body pleasantly. My tongue will lick you. I’ll kiss your lips)) You will get a very strong pleasure and will get excited from it. That I’ll begin to stroke your cock very in a passionate rhythm. You’ll plunge into the tremendous passion. I want to plange with you. Call me.

Obviously this is no one who knows me.

Then there was this bit of weirdness at the bottom:

This Week In Webclips
Ando’s always welcome here, Mikey Wright rages, taking care of PNG, and more
Sneak Peek: In This Issue
At First Sight
Firsthand accounts of some of the greatest modern surf discoveries.
Journey to the Center
Finding the point of intersection between the old world and the new in Gabon.
The Long Way to Lagundr

Curiously, no links were provided for any of these, not that I was going to look at them or anything.

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