Meta: Why I’m Such a Bitch

You know, comments are simultaneously the best and the worst thing about blogging. The immediate feedback is gratifying, often educational, and (at least around here) usually fun. I love getting to “know” the regular readers of the blog who participate (though I don’t forget about you lurkers, either), and I’ve even developed a few real-life friendships out of comments and the Fatosphere community. Hell, when Sweet Machine and Fillyjonk started writing here, I’d never met either of them in person — I just assumed from their comments here, at Fatshionista, and at other blogs that I’d like them if I did, and I’d be proud to have them contributing to a blog with my name up top. Both hunches turned out to be very true. 

But there’s a reason for the bitchy comments policy I wrote before they ever got here: Unmoderated or even lightly moderated comments can turn sour very fucking quickly. I’m thrilled and honored to be a regular Broadsheet blogger now, but as I’ve said before, most days, I don’t even let myself look at the comments there — on my posts or anyone else’s — because they’ll blow my Sanity Watchers points for the month. And it’s the same at most online versions of major newspapers and many blogs that don’t make comment moderation a top priority — I don’t even bother looking at the comments, because I know they’ll be full of argumentative assholes spoiling for a fight, better known as trolls. When those comments aren’t dispatched swiftly, they take over a thread like weeds.

And that sucks, because there are always some good comments in among the bullshit, but when a thread is overgrown with jerks, it’s not even worth trying to find those comments. Skimming through the troll comments to get to the good ones raises my blood pressure and makes me sputtery, so I just don’t do it. And that’s the number one reason why anyone who pisses me off here gets shown the door right quick (see rules 5 and 7). If my blood pressure goes up, my doctor’s just going to think I’m eating too much bacon, and I don’t want to deal with that aggro. 

The problem with this policy, insofar as there is one (and I don’t actually think there is), is twofold. 1) The definition of “troll” is open to interpretation. 2) People who get on my tits aren’t always trolls, per se, and I don’t necessarily care about the distinction anyway. If somebody’s comments are consistently giving me a stabbing pain behind the right eye, I feel no obligation to be patient with that person, regardless of whether he or she falls under the rubric of “troll” in most people’s estimation.

And that’s the thing I think I made abundantly clear in the comments policy, but which some people still seem to get hung up on occasionally: It’s my right eye — and Fillyjonk’s and Sweet Machine’s respective right eyes — that makes the determination as to whether certain commenters are causing more trouble than they’re worth. We don’t take a vote, we don’t check comments against a list of specific unsavory behaviors and score them on a scale from 1 to 10 — we just ask ourselves, “Is this commenter giving me a fucking headache?” And if the answer is yes, then we generally follow a three-step process. 1) Point out that the person is violating the standards of discourse around here in some way, and warn them that it needs to stop. 2) Get snarky. 3) Banninate. Sometimes, we skip straight to 2 or 3, depending on the size of our headaches, but usually, if you look back, you’ll see we did carry out point 1 somewhere in there. And in light of the clearly posted comments policy, bothering with step 1 is being generous. 

What this means is, if you think we’re being unnecessarily bitchy, this is probably not the blog for you. And that means exactly what it says — it’s not a criticism, just a fact. We’re not trying to be exclusive for the sake of it, we’re just saying, the bloggers here all have strong personalities, zero patience for bullying and/or thread derailing, and high standards for communication. We’re actually pretty forgiving people in real life, but if we gave the benefit of the doubt to everyone here who gives us that stabby pain, A) we’d go crazy, and B) the comments threads here would be miserable reading for the vast majority of Shapelings. Everyone loves a little blog dramaz, but nobody loves a thread where one or two people keep yelling, “BUT YOU’RE WRONG AND I’M RIGHT I’M RIGHT I’M RIGHT WHY WON’T YOU JUST ADMIT I’M RIGHT?” (Hence rule 6, among others.) So we don’t put up with it. Period.

Realistically, this means that we have probably, on occasion, banned or berated a perfectly decent person who might have eventually blossomed into the kind of commenter we can’t wait to hear from. And you know what? We’re okay with that. We’re not proud of it, and we certainly don’t set out to exclude bright, interesting people from the conversation here. But if it happens every now and again, oh well — because overall, our being hardasses helps keep this blog readable and only rarely crazymaking.

Most of our moderation work goes on behind the scenes — every first-time comment has to be approved, which is why you almost never see a drive-by fat-hater here anymore — but when an approved commenter starts driving us batshit, it’s out there for everyone to see. And we’re okay with that, too. We think about our responses, and we own them. But they’re not up for negotiation. We only get bitchy after we’ve perceived a consistent pattern of disrespect for the comments policy and/or the spirit of the blog. If you don’t perceive the same pattern, then one of two things is happening: you haven’t read all the same comments we have, or you have different standards than we do. Either way, it’s our call, and arguing with us about those calls is far more likely to get you on the shit list than change our minds. 

Is this attitude of ours despotic? Draconian? Bitcherrific? Sure. It’s also what makes the comments here pleasant, entertaining, informative reading 99 days out of 100. For all the times I’ve been accused of hating free speech, banning “anyone who disagrees with me,” constructing an echo chamber, denying fat people the opportunity to read important information about their health risks (SRSLY), et fucking cetera, the discussions around here still somehow manage to be lively and loaded with polite disagreement, constructive criticism, and differing perspectives. We wouldn’t have it any other way. But we also wouldn’t have it like Broadsheet or the New York Times or some of the big-name liberal blogs — where the commentariat routinely confuses “self-expression” with “being a fucking asshole.” 

And as I’ve said before, if our readership were dropping, our comments threads were getting shorter, or any of the many Shapelings we’ve come to trust let us know they think our iron fists have gotten a little too big for their velvet gloves, we’d take a long, hard look at the way we run things around here. As it is, though, the numbers keep going up — and for my money, our unrepentant bitchery is one of the reasons for that. Like I said, I love comments — writing them, reading them, responding to them — but when blog owners lose control of their comment sections, it can turn me off on a whole damn blog, even if I’m crazy about the posters there. If the discussion sucks, I go where it doesn’t, and I can’t believe I’m alone in that. Every time a public banning happens here, I get grief about how I’m alienating people who might want to learn — emphasis on the might — as if the entire fat rights movement will dissolve tomorrow if I don’t award every jerk who drops by his or her own special soapbox. But alienating the people who cause trouble makes this space safer and more welcoming for those who don’t. It makes it the kind of blog I love to read — and until somebody starts paying me a shit ton to do this, the fact that I love reading this blog as much as writing a third of it is the only thing making it worthwhile.

So that, my dears, is why I’m a snarky bitch with an itchy banning finger, and why I encourage Fillyjonk and Sweet Machine to be the same (not that they need my help, frankly). It’s because I love this blog, I want to keep loving it, and I want people who are turned off by thread-derailing bullies to keep finding their way here and falling in love with it, too. So far, it’s working. 

307 thoughts on “Meta: Why I’m Such a Bitch

  1. Can I just say…

    I LLLLLLLUUUUUUURRRRRRRVVVVVVVSSSSSSS U!

    (strictly in a blogger-crush kind of way of course, nothing creepy)

  2. Regular lurker here.

    I love the bitchy, cut-throat moderation. It makes this blog more pleasant to read when I don’t have to read fat-hating, women-hating trolls or other thread derailments or what have you. Any one who really needs to write that kind of crap is free to get his or her own blog.

  3. strictly in a blogger-crush kind of way of course, nothing creepy

    That’s it, Tricia, you’re banned! ;)

  4. You’re right, and I’m sorry, I’m new to the lovely fat blogroll and I was thinking of this as more of a public presentation space when it is actually your blog. :)

  5. But alienating the people who cause trouble makes this space safer and more welcoming for those who don’t.

    YES.

    As someone who used to run a rather large forum (15000+ active members), I totally get down with this. You have to work hard to keep the safe space an actual safe space; because while the internet lets you create safe spaces – anyone can get into it.

    I adore how you run this place. Thank you three for doing so wonderfully.

  6. i like the way you moderate too! i’m a regular reader (via rss) but rarely comment, and my earliest comments were totes concern troll-y, but you approved them anyway and let me stay (yay)!
    the comments threads here are great, and if cut-throat bitchery is what it takes to get them that way, then high five for that.

  7. That’s it, Tricia, you’re banned! ;)

    Don’t worry. I lurvs you, too, fj (and sweetmachine). My blog-crushing is apparently polyamorous — although very, very particular.

  8. No prob, Emmy — that wasn’t directed at you in particular, just a general rant partly inspired by the way things have been going the last couple of days.

  9. I kinda had a feeling something like this was coming from the last 2 posts…

    I dunno I like the comment policy, I do feel a lot more safe saying things here then other places. I can say things here and know people will take them seriously, or say something offends me and know that if I script it intelligently no one is gonna bite me for being over sensitive(though I still bite my lip in fear when I feel it and post a comment I’m still learning safe places, especially when it comes to the internet world)

    So yay you guys are doing a faboo job. Maybe people just forget that this is your personal space?(well you, fj and sweetmachine anyway :-) )

  10. I really appreciate the comment policy here. The internet is a huge place with plenty of outlets for bigots, and this is just one precious safe space for fat people.

    Thank you for doing the hard work of providing that!

  11. Maybe people just forget that this is your personal space?

    They do, and you know, most of the time we don’t mind and even encourage that. We want you guys — the intelligent and delightful ones — to feel a sense of belonging, even cooperative ownership here. We want you to feel like your opinions are relevant and heard. But at the end of the day, it’s still our blog — meaning less “we get to be in charge,” though it’s that too, and more “it can’t be everyone’s blog.” If someone gets upset that we’re not accommodating their viewpoint, well, that’s why this blog is a subset of the internet and not the internet itself. We are large, we contain multitudes, but shit, we do not have room for ALL the multitudes. If your particular multitude is underserved, it makes more sense to look for a place that serves it, not to demand that we spread out a carpet for you.

  12. This is absolutely one of the reasons I keep coming back to Shapely Prose. It’s not just because the blogging is outstanding (though it is, obviously). It’s because I can read the comments and not come away feeling sick, angry and miserable. I get that every damn day out in the big wide world – it’s nice to come home and be reminded that there’s awesome people out there too. That doesn’t work so well if the awesome is being drowned out by the crappy.

  13. Kate, you’ve (and FJ and SM) have mad moderation skills, and I respect you guys a lot for it.
    Oh, and when you used the word “banninate”, I went over to YouTube and watched Trogdor the Burninator. :)

  14. There have been times of late that I’ve wanted to point folk to the Geek Social Fallacies…

    http://www.plausiblydeniable.com/opinion/gsf.html

    because deities know I’ve had my go-rounds with that way of thinking myself. I think the three of you are doing a bang up job. Myself, I’d have been like
    1)snark
    2)surrealism
    3)banninate

    which is why I’d make a crap moderator. Ha.

  15. We are large, we contain multitudes, but shit, we do not have room for ALL the multitudes.

    Heh. Exactly. And yes to that whole comment. To further belabor the “our house” analogy, I want the door to stay wide open with a big fucking welcome mat out front, and I want people to put their feet up and feel free to get their own beer from the fridge and eat anything they find in the pantry and nap on the futon and play with the dogs just as comfortably as they would in their own homes. But when they piss on the rug/pull a dog’s tail/break a lamp on purpose/start telling me how much my house sucks, they get thrown out on their ear. It’s that simple.

  16. Seriously. That rug really ties the room together.

    buttercup, this:
    1)snark
    2)surrealism
    3)banninate

    is cracking my shit up. Feel free to break out step 2 here any time.

  17. Well I did note at some point that my monster appeared to have genitals.

    But if you want me to get down to the real nitty-Magritte-y…..

  18. Frankly I think the world could benefit from a bit more unrepentant bitchery.

    Do you have the power to ban trolls in real life? Because that would be awesome.

  19. I love the moderation here. Not only because it keeps out the trolls and the bullying, but because it allows the conversation to progress beyond the “FA 101″ level. That’s what I find most frustrating in lightly moderated blogs (or with the “But they might learn!” idea in general) — it ties everyone up doing remedial teaching rather than saying more interesting, nuanced stuff.

  20. That rug really ties the room together.

    Heh. Al and I have also recently taken to screaming, “OVER THE LINE!” at each other when one of us gets carried away with offensive jokes, as we are both wont to do. Maybe step 2 should just be a link here. “This isn’t ‘Nam, this is blogging. There are rules!”

  21. umm…oops? Did I start an avalanche of angst and woe? I hope not, I like this blog too much :(

    No… or, well, sort of. :) But it’s okay. Honestly, this happens about every three months, like clockwork. For a while, I thought it was just dieting threads, ’cause it tended to coincide with those, but there’s just a cycle in which everything’s fine for a while, and then people come out of the woodwork all at once to tell us why our blog-running sucks.

  22. “This isn’t ‘Nam, this is blogging. There are rules!”

    This should at least go up on the comments policy page! :)

  23. “In fact, I think I just found our next tagline.”

    Oh.

    That rug really ties the room together?
    or was it
    Shit, we do not have room for ALL the multitudes?

  24. Jeez, I take a few days off and get married, and I miss all sorts of drama! I always miss the good stuff!

  25. I think that cutthroat moderation can be the best thing for a conversation. UGH… I was on a list serve once where the moderator was an INCREDIBLY nice woman, but she didn’t really enjoy the responsibility, and she wasn’t willing to tell troublemakers that they had to stop or leave. (I can think of four — one who was very, very good at subtly stirring things up and then disavowing all responsibility for it; one who was just kind of a know-it-all pronouncement-issuer who would tell people that their descriptions of their own reality was wrong; one who tried to convert people to his religion; and one who would just out-and-out insult people who didn’t share his politics by calling them idiots and such.)

    Functionally, that meant that those who cared about the list but didn’t have moderator authority had to *convince* the troublemakers to be nice or leave. Which, increasingly, became ALL that the list was ABOUT. Many, many people who didn’t like the endless negotiations and drama left. Others would invest kind of a lot of time trying to collectively manage divisive people. That was tiring and totally not the point of the list. The conversation came to suck.

    You know, it was also tremendously inefficient. Because I think EVERY ONE of the troublemakers ended up leaving anyway: the pronouncement-giver decided that the rest of us didn’t appreciate his wisdom adequately. The everyone-who-doesn’t-share-my-politics-is-an-idiot guy got pissed off that there was a much-beloved REPUBLICAN on the list that many people actually (gasp) persistently liked even though he WAS OMG VOTING FOR BUSH. The pot-stirrer said that she wouldn’t stay if the evangelizer was allowed to stay, and then the evangelizer left in response, but not after the moderator finally asked the pot-stirrer AND the evangelizer to “take a break,” which hurt the pot-stirrer’s feelings, so SHE left too.

    So they all ended up gone, but a lot of other people left too, and the tone of the list didn’t recover for a long time.

    Point is, I’m really, really glad that SP is moderated the way it is. I imagine moderating is a pain in the ass, so thanks for doing it.

  26. I’m mostly a lurker here, but I do read the comments. I’ve been on unmoderated fora (hell, I’ve been on Usenet), and I’ve seen comment sections that are so heavily moderated that they really are echo chambers, and neither is interesting enough to spend my time reading. The way the three of you participate in the conversation and moderate comments sets the tone, and that’s why I keep coming back here.

  27. Funny how one man’s meat is another man’s poison. The rules totally make sense and i don’t disagree with them or your right to enforce them.

    So it’s still a good 50/50 chance that my outsider schtick is all in my head. I like to tell myself that, anyways.

  28. I suspect that without moderation every other comment would be either “I don’t want to screw any of you,” or “I lost weight, ask me how.”

    So, thanks!

  29. Shit, we do not have room for ALL the multitudes?

    Ooh, that might be next! But as you’ll see if you look up, the new one’s already in place.

  30. But we also wouldn’t have it like Broadsheet or the New York Times or some of the big-name liberal blogs — where the commentariat routinely confuses “self-expression” with “being a fucking asshole.”

    The biggest bores on the NY Times Well blog right now isn’t the assholes, it’s the Experts who see commenting on Well as a Marketing Opportunity. Bleah.

    And yes, the rug really ties the room together. I love the matching throw pillows.

  31. *face reddens*

    I overreacted because I let my big mouth run wild without doing my research. Sowwy.

    I lurves you guys!

    P.S. Where the commentariat routinely confuses “self-expression” with “being a fucking asshole.”

    It’s a fine line. :)

  32. That’s some nice moderating there, ladies. *thumbsup* I love being able to get a nice dose of FA without having to wade through general asshattery. This place is the blue cheese dressing on the searing hot chicken wings that are the internet.

    I think I need some lunch.

  33. Functionally, that meant that those who cared about the list but didn’t have moderator authority had to *convince* the troublemakers to be nice or leave. Which, increasingly, became ALL that the list was ABOUT.

    YES

    YES YES YES YES

  34. I’m glad you made this post. As one who is too proud I realize that it’s good to get a dissenting view across, but once you’ve made your point it’s time to let it go rather than drag the whole thread down into misery. I’ve been on too many blogs where intelligent discussions quickly fizzled into poo-slinging and the whole point of the discussion was eventually lost. I’m terribly guilty of this IRL, and I find the best solution is to drop the conversation and to just sit and think for a while. In that sense, hopefully banning is beneficial to the banned as well as the community.

  35. Congrats, Kristin!

    As for the moderating, you guys help us all keep our Sanity Points(TM) in check, and I love you for it.

  36. This place is the blue cheese dressing on the searing hot chicken wings that are the internet

    Kate, are we still collecting stuff for a “praise” page?

  37. By the way is anyone working on the Christina question from the last thread? It looked really interesting.

  38. By the way is anyone working on the Christina question from the last thread?

    AL, I actually asked the original letter-writer (who liked Aunt Fattie’s advice a lot, THANK YOU ALL VERY MUCH ;)) if she wanted to work on it. She’s a blogger herself and has been thinking about these issues for a while. I don’t expect any answers from her, but I really hope she’s willing to do some musing on the question.

  39. Christina’s question was excellent but a bit of a stumper, frankly, so I’m hoping FJ or SM will address it. :)

    Kate, are we still collecting stuff for a “praise” page?

    I got rid of the “praise” page because it didn’t fit on the header, but we might have to figure out a way…

    Congrats, Kristin!

  40. I LOVE the comment moderation here. I link to your comment policy from my own new little baby blog because if your strict, non-nonsense (well, at least not the mean fat-hating kind of nonsense) awesomeness. If not for the moderation; there would be so much crap to wade through in the comments that the incredible conversatinos I read and can participate in; would be lost in the mayhem.

    I consider you 3 (FJ, SM and KH) like the heros from this little comic: http://www.xkcd.com/438/

    Yea; so thanks! :D Oh, and did you just repaint in here? The color is so lovely and warm and just brings out that colors of that rug…

  41. I’m a longtime lurker and recent poser and I like that I can come here and never worry about seeing hatred spewed in any direction. In fact, by regularly reading and in a sense participating here, I am more critical of the vitriolic shit I see everywhere else.

    And that’s why you won’t see me being a “hard-on about this.” :D

  42. I have to say I love the job you guys do with moderating this space. Despotic Bitcherifficness FTW!

    Seriously, you do seem to me to hit a nice balance between helping out the newbies who are just finding their FA feet and protecting us all from Troll Time. Plus I admire the bitcheriffic snark.

  43. I don’t think there’s really any other viable comment policy for a site such as this. Because if it becomes no fun for the moderators, the site will die, so keeping the moderators sane is a primary concern. (Yup, been there, done that, quite literally have the tshirts!) Because they’re the ones keeping it going.

    And to anyone who says that this policy suppresses disagreement should go read the comments on the latest “Aunt Fattie” thread. Lots of different perspectives, not at all sycophantic, and very good reading with lots to think about. There are ways to disagree without revealing one’s inner asshole.

  44. So what you’re saying is this is not a blogocracy? You’re the blogtator? You make the blogcisions around here?

    hee

  45. I have to confess, sometimes the snark level does deter me from posting, mostly because I am admittedly hypersensitive, and posting at SP kind of feels like I’m trying to sit at the cool kids’ table. I don’t want to say something stupid and end up making the people I admire think I’m an idiot.

  46. Thanks, everyone!

    I just read as many of the comments as I could over on the Aunt Fattie thread. Maybe there were some assholish ones that I didn’t make it down to, but one of the things I love about SP is the way people disagree so respectfully.

  47. Count me in too as being okily-dokily with moderation and snarky commentary. It’s my opinion that it’s your “house” and hence your rules. I also like the fact that you don’t mind disagreeing with someone else who disagrees with the original point (like on the epic thread that I thought about commenting on, then got distracted by epic slackery.). To me, it’s just like being with your friends – sometimes you want to smack them but it doesn’t mean you don’t still love them. ;b

  48. Wish, fwiw, I don’t recall you ever saying anything that rubbed me the wrong way. I totally don’t want people to feel intimidated, but … well, you already read the post for all the “buts” there.

  49. April D, xkcd is the best comic ever, and that one is particularly awesome!
    It’s true, too – the Internet allows people to be way bigger jerks than they would be in person. Or maybe for some it’s an excuse to be as jerky as they actually are, because they can stop pretending to be nice all the time. That’s not directed at the SP ladies – it’s in regard to trolls and shit-disturbers who take advantage of the anonymity of the Internet.
    Kate proudly blogs under her own name and owns all her words, and I know FJ and SM are anonymous for particular reasons, and they also take responsibility for everything they write. And I’m sure all three of you are just as bitcherrific in-person as you are online. :)

  50. Hey, Wish- I say stupid things ALL the time! I interject comments on threads when I haven’t had time to read all of the comments! I try to be funny when I AM NOT!
    No one ever makes me feel dumb for it…

  51. So what you’re saying is this is not a blogocracy? You’re the blogtator? You make the blogcisions around here?

    *snort* This is awesome on many levels, one being that a variant is in the comments policy on my blog:

    Lastly, this is not a democracy, it is a blogtatorship. We reserve the right to publish and delete comments as we see fit.

    Also, I love y’alls comment policy! I don’t have to worry about jackasses ruining my FA high. Rock on, y’all.

  52. Kristin, I was about to ask what you wore (which is of course the main important question with a wedding), but then I realized you already told us. Rock on with your bad shoes!

    (Er, that’s bad as in good, obvy.)

  53. as if the entire fat rights movement will dissolve tomorrow if I don’t award every jerk who drops by his or her own special soapbox

    The Internet allows every jerk with computer access to have her/his very own soapbox. There’re thousands of free blogging and journaling services out there on the tubes. If you feel that strongly about something, kids, stake out your own corner of the Web and stop acting like the entire Internet is your sandbox to pee in! You do not get to come into someone else’s blog and defecate all over their space at will. How’d you like it if I did that to your living room, huh?

    Also? Bloggers are not the US Congress. ISPs and services and web hosts and web masters are also not the Congress. THERE IS NO FREE SPEECH ON THE INTERNET. Get over it.

    Argh. Sorry. Longtime moderator of a comm and this is a pet peeve of mine. I rule with an iron fist in a fuzzy blue glove most of the time, and we’ve had very few problems because I will ban and delete very fast when necessary.

    *goes to find a cookie and some zen, in that order*

    DRST

  54. I’m typically only funny unintentionally, and unfortunately my tendency to trip and fall over my own feet doesn’t translate well to the internet.

  55. I totally read that as “A lot of Shapelings are funnier than I think they are,” and I was confuzzled.

    Well, because I am a Humorless Feminist.

  56. You know what really gets on my tits?

    Um, nothing. I just really wanted to say “gets on my tits.”

    Now I want to try to work, “Hey! Get off my tits!” into a conversation….

  57. There are approximately 1,495,595,550 places on the interweb I can go if I want a barrage of fat hate and/or well-meaning idiots preaching “health” at me. It’s everywhere. can be reading a blog about freaking baseball and still encounter all kinds of fat phobia. This is a safe haven for me. I know that while I might encounter respectful dissent, I will not feel like the target of a witch hunt.

    I can’t tell you how much I appreciate your lack of tolerance for BS here. We get it in every other aspect of our lives, so anyone who thinks we’re being closed-minded can bite me.

  58. I am down with the comments policy. I occasionally avoid leaving a comment when I see that my point has been made by someone else and not well-received, or when I can’t think of an inoffensive way to say it, or just when I know that it doesn’t fall in with the policy and/or beliefs of SP, but… I mean, duh. That’s called “being polite,” you know? And I think you have every right to insist on it.

    In other words, if you have to go “waaahhhh I didn’t get to make my irrelevant and/or offensive point over and over,” you should probably just not be here. That’s where banninating (AWESOME word) comes in.

  59. Tari, I guess this whole post mostly boils down to “hey! You! Get offa my tits!”

    In other words, if you have to go “waaahhhh I didn’t get to make my irrelevant and/or offensive point over and over,” you should probably just not be here.

    Word up, sarawr.

    I had no idea you were self-censoring; I thought you were just unrelentingly awesome.

  60. Wait, duh, the praise page IS still there. I just hadn’t looked at it in a zillion years. Hell yeah, that’s going on it.

    Ahh…sweet, sweet immortality.

    :yay:

  61. fillyjonk, I AM unrelentingly awesome. Part of my unrelenting awesomeness occasionally expresses itself in knowing when to shut the hell up. ;)

  62. I try to be funny when I AM NOT!

    In my opinion a bad joke is better than no joke at all. But then… I don’t have to listen to my own bad jokes, so I am spared the worst of it.

  63. fillyjonk, I AM unrelentingly awesome. Part of my unrelenting awesomeness occasionally expresses itself in knowing when to shut the hell up. ;)

    Oh, SO much word.

  64. I like the comments policy, because it’s clearly working. I can read the comments here without trying to stab anyone through my monitor. If someone says something dumb, someone else has already spoken to it before I can formulate an answer– which is awesome, because that means I don’t have to. :-)

    One of the other side effects of the moderation here is that it’s made me read with a closer eye. I may have missed something offensive, but because it’s called out a few comments down the thread, I’ll go back to find it and think, Oh, yeah, I probably should have seen that. And I’ll pick up on more of those statements when I first read them now than when I started.

  65. I’m glad that you reiterated the policy, because it’s easy for readers like me to forget that the mods see an awful lot more shit than you ever let on, and can sort through to see patterns of behavior in certain commenters whereas we just might notice one or two every once in awhile. That’s one of the main reasons I won’t make a blog – I couldn’t handle the constant sifting of crapola to make it a safe enough place for people who really wanted to be there. I’m impressed that y’all can.

  66. This place is the blue cheese dressing on the searing hot chicken wings that are the internet.

    Well, that’s good. If it were ranch dressing it would be blasphemy to put it on your chicken wings.

    btw, I grew up in Buffalo. Don’t fuck with my wings. lol

    I feel like compiling my own personal list of awesome little phrases people are using on this thread.

  67. Ooh, that just sent me to a bad Billy Ocean place.

    A rented van in the desert?

    (That one’s for you, vivelafat.)

  68. the mods see an awful lot more shit than you ever let on, and can sort through to see patterns of behavior in certain commenters whereas we just might notice one or two every once in awhile.

    That’s a huge part of it. We’ve all gotten pretty good at spotting trouble before it really gets off the ground, and sometimes that’s when we’ll bring down the hammer — so all readers see is a mild skirmish, but we’re thinking ahead to the explosion due in a few days, because we’ve seen the pattern so many times before.

  69. I’m hearing “Banninate!” in a Dalek voice.

    I don’t know if I hate you for that or love you because now “Banninate! Banninate!” has replaced the Billy Ocean in my head.

  70. Is there a good Billy Ocean place?

    I dunno, “get offa my tits and into my car” is kind of cracking me up.

    But “hey, you, get offa my tits” was of course supposed to send you to a Rolling Stones place. Can you get there from a Billy Ocean place? It might be too late.

  71. shinobi, I think (I hope) that’s where the “banninate” construction comes from in the first place. So your personal soundtrack is a) right on and b) better than Billy Ocean.

  72. But “hey, you, get offa my tits” was of course supposed to send you to a Rolling Stones place.

    But that would be “Hey! (Hey) You! (You) Get offa my tits!” (Although shit, now that runs the danger of sending me to an Avril Lavigne place.)

  73. We’ve all gotten pretty good at spotting trouble before it really gets off the ground, and sometimes that’s when we’ll bring down the hammer — so all readers see is a mild skirmish, but we’re thinking ahead to the explosion due in a few days, because we’ve seen the pattern so many times before.

    Does this remind anyone of oh, say, mothering, or school-teachering? Eyes in the back of the head stuff.

  74. Whitman? The Big Lebowski? XKCD? AND the Rolling Stones?

    That does it, I’m proposing to this comment thread. Comment thread, run away with me! I will make you the happiest comment threat in the whole wide Internet!

    Seriously, this is one of the few places where the comments are (almost) as much fun to read as the bloggings themselves. Long live the bitchy moderation policies, say I.

  75. Ok, this thread is cracking me up. I now have some strange hybrid of Billy Ocean and Avril Lavigne in my brain. Also, bitcherrific is an excellent word. And of course I completely enjoy said bitcherrific comments policy, as it actually allows for a conversation, as others have said. I’ve seen (also laughed at and occasionally poked with a stick) actual pointless, arbitrarily bitchy moderation on forums, and yours is nothing like that! :)

    So what you’re saying is this is not a blogocracy? You’re the blogtator? You make the blogcisions around here?
    sumac, THESE are spirit fingers.

  76. Whitman? The Big Lebowski? XKCD? AND the Rolling Stones?

    Also Mr. Show! And Strong Bad.

    And Billy Ocean.

  77. Do you really need another commenter saying they love the modding here?

    Well, I do love it. It’s a rare blog or LJ where I find myself really wanting to read not just the post but the whole list of comments as well.

  78. Does this remind anyone of oh, say, mothering, or school-teachering? Eyes in the back of the head stuff.

    Katia, the original version of this post started with a multi-paragraph ramble about the way my mother ran things around the house, which I finally decided made it too damned long. But suffice to say, I am my mother’s daughter. And my mother had an uncanny knack for spotting the friends who would eventually screw me over the first time she met them.

  79. Whitman? The Big Lebowski? XKCD? AND the Rolling Stones?

    sumac, THESE are spirit fingers.

    And Bring it On! Which I totally missed on the first read.

    Do you really need another commenter saying they love the modding here?

    Yes.

  80. *goes to find a cookie and some zen, in that order*

    mmmmm…zen cookies…*Homer Simpson gurgling sound*

    Also, I wish there was a way to type “banninate” so you guys hear it the way it sounds in my head. Except then you’d have to go into my head, and you’d probably emerge whimpering because, well, it’s scary in there. You might crawl out of the exit vent with frizzy hair and later change sexual preference. Someone please get that reference.

    Hey that rhymed.

  81. Oh, Bring It On. Such a slightly guilty but ultimately awesome pleasure.

    (I will totally watch anything that has Eliza Dushku in it. No matter how bad it is, and holy shit, girl has been in some BAD movies.)

    (There’s actually no point to this comment, except that I want to see my monster again, because IT IS HEART SHAPED and I love it.)

  82. Someone please get that reference.

    Being John Malkovich.

    I love my monster also. She looks disgruntled.

  83. car, for whatever it’s worth, Fu and I don’t get that many trolls (unless she’s zapping dozens of them at a time before I ever catch them and she’s not telling me, which I doubt). If you have a WordPress blog and you make sure everybody goes into mod the first time they post, that should take care of most of the ones you do get. These ladies here just get buckets full of trolls because they’re…um…so shapely.

    Oh, and Billy Ocean’s “Get Out Of My Dreams, Get Into My Car,” yanked that line from “You’re Sixteen” (Billy Burnette in 1960, then Ringo Starr in 1974) — “you walked out of my dreams and into my car,” etc. Also, hasn’t anyone heard the Rubinoos’ “I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend,” from 1979, which also, ahem, borrowed “Get Off My Cloud” for its chorus — “hey! hey! you! you! I wanna be your boyfriend”? Apparently the writers of “I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend” sued Lavigne and Dr. Luke and were basically told to go pound sand because all of them had ripped off the Stones. Hee.

    (takes off music encylopedia nerd hat)

  84. Get outta my dreams, get offa my tits…

    Caribean Queen, now you getting on my tits…

    Su-su-sugetoffamytits. Whoa oh!

  85. As one who is too proud I realize that it’s good to get a dissenting view across, but once you’ve made your point it’s time to let it go rather than drag the whole thread down into misery.

    And I suffer from this affliction as well. Obviously.

    My sincere apologies for threadjacking and being a general ass. My opinions on things haven’t changed–nor will they–but on further review, the sledgehammer approach did get out of hand.

    Mea culpa, and I’ll refrain from commenting from here out.

  86. Ahh our network went crazy. I missed sooo much while I was gone it’s almost like a hippy lovefest in here right now. Not that I’d know what a hippy lovefest was really like only it sounds good and happy.

    BUT LoL Trogdor silliness… my ex still sings that to me on occasion.

    And!
    —–OFF TOPIC——

    I totally just bought my first bikini ever… I’m wearing it to the island next weekend to show off my lumpy stretch marky stomach in all it’s pasty glory.

  87. Wait, was Susudio not with Billy Ocean? Who is willing to put on her music nerd hat and own up to knowing about Phil Collins and Billy Ocean? COME ON I KNOW SOMEBODY KNOWS.

  88. Also kinda off-topic, I just read the Geek Social Fallacies, and my head exploded. They completely explain a friend issue I’m having right now; buttercup, my eternal thanks.

  89. LOL Crap >__< I posted a number that was in the same word doc as my post for spell check purposes(helps me look a little less dumb)

    Anyway that can totally delete that I’d love you forever

  90. Phil Collins and Billy Ocean

    Whoa. I’ve just been desperately looking up a poem by Billy Collins, and I had a vertiginous moment of thinking that this was somehow mirrored over here.

  91. Well, it’s all been said, so I’ll make it brief – thanks for keeping this a relatively safe space. My world is full of enough hate.

  92. These ladies here just get buckets full of trolls because they’re…um…so shapely.

    And you know, we don’t really get buckets full anymore. I think some people have been cowed by the comments policy. They know they’re not going to derail anything so they don’t bother.

  93. I really appreciate the heavy-handed moderation here. Because it provides a safe space, but also because of what occhiblu said -if you let every “but fat is unhealthy!” comment through, every thread would get derailed into an argument about whether fat was healthy or not, and that would just get boring and exhausting. This way we can have actual discussions.

    I’d also like to add that whenever I have disagreed with a post or brought up a concern in a respectful manner, I’ve been responded to respectfully by the blogmistresses here. I don’t understand why people treat this space disrespectfully and then get oh so shocked when they are treated disrespectfully in turn.

  94. I am so glad we have this post so that now every time someone complains about our bitchery, we can just go “Yep” and link them here.

  95. Kate Harding: “And my mother had an uncanny knack for spotting the friends who would eventually screw me over the first time she met them.”

    Yours too? I remember the misgivings my mom had when she met my high school BFF. Three years later, when that BFF had turned all of my other friends against me, attempted to steal my boyfriend, and spread a really, REALLY nasty false rumor around the school (that I heard about from someone I barely knew), she had the good grace to refrain from saying “I told you so.”

    Huh. If I ever blog maybe I’ll set up my mom as moderator.

  96. Whoa. I’ve just been desperately looking up a poem by Billy Collins, and I had a vertiginous moment of thinking that this was somehow mirrored over here.

    Ha! Now when you find the poem you are totally going to read it to the tune of “When the Going Gets Tough (The Tough Get Going).”

  97. Do you really need another commenter saying they love the modding here?

    Considering how many complaints we’ve gotten in the last two days, yes!

  98. One of the reasons I love coming to your blog is because there aren’t obnoxious troll comments below the articles. Usually, I can’t pull myself away from glancing at comments, and then I usually end up reading them… and on other sites they do make me mad. Keep being a bitch and moderate at your discretion~you’re making us other bitches happier. :)

  99. Ha! Now when you find the poem you are totally going to read it to the tune of “When the Going Gets Tough (The Tough Get Going).”

    OTM, I have been sitting here at a library computer desperately trying not to lose my shit as I read this thread, and you pushed me over the edge, goddammit.

  100. She’s an easy lover!
    She’ll get a hold on you; believe it!
    She’s like no other!
    Before you know it she’ll be on your tits (she’ll be on your tits yeah yeah).

    God, that was like a tic. I feel so much better that I got that out.

  101. Hey, thanks, Tal. And while checking yourself is always a good idea, we haven’t banned you (obvy), so if you can tone it down a little, you’re welcome to comment.

  102. WILL YOU STOP WITH THE COLLINS/OCEAN, PLEASE! My head, she is going, “Get out of my dreams/su-su-sudio!/when the gooooin’ gets ro-ough!/she’ll take your heart but you won’t feel it!” AND IT WON’T STOP.

    Alternately, we should have a sing-along.

  103. I occasionally avoid leaving a comment when I see that my point has been made by someone else and not well-received, or when I can’t think of an inoffensive way to say it, or just when I know that it doesn’t fall in with the policy and/or beliefs of SP, but… I mean, duh.

    Hey, that’s my commenting policy! Jinx!

  104. She’s an easy lover!
    She’ll get a hold on you; believe it!
    She’s like no other!
    Before you know it she’ll be on your tits (she’ll be on your tits yeah yeah).

    I can’t believe you went there. I’m *crying* over here!!

  105. Now, now, Kate – are you really a bitch or just a woman standing up for her space?

    Glad to read this here – I’ve been noticing similar stuff around the ‘sphere (including the blog I edit) and had just about come to the conclusion that I would rather have ten polite, thoughtful readers than 10,000 assholes.

    Nice to be in your house, I promise I’ll wipe my feet before coming in.

  106. And you know, we don’t really get buckets full anymore. I think some people have been cowed by the comments policy. They know they’re not going to derail anything so they don’t bother.

    Or, maybe they all saw the mincemeat you made out of “surprise me cunt” Rick, and collectively slunk back off to the privy pits from which they emerged.

  107. Welcome, Latoya! You do amazing work at Racialicious. Attention Shapelings: if you’re not reading Latoya’s blog, well, why not?

  108. I can’t believe this… but all this Phil Collins talk has finally driven the remnants of the last Rick Roll I fell victim to from my brain. I”m not entirely sure I’m happy about it.

  109. OTM IS BANNED FOR BRINGING PHIL COLLINS INTO THE THREAD.

    Okay, not really, but that might be going in the comments policy.

    And Latoya, I am both a bitch AND a woman standing up for her space. :)

  110. Before you know it she’ll be on your tits (she’ll be on your tits yeah yeah).

    BWAH! Falls in perfectly with my long-standing theory that you can make any song hilarious by changing one word, as long as it’s the right word. “The Night Has a Thousand Noses,” anyone?

    And as long as we’re on 80s music, how about

    Oooh, here she comes
    Watch out boy, she’ll chew you up
    Oooh, here she comes
    She’s an anteater

  111. OTM IS BANNED FOR BRINGING PHIL COLLINS INTO THE THREAD.

    Seriously. Now I’m going through his whole catalog in my head, and wondering how many of them I could play…NOT OKAY!!

  112. Oooh, here she comes
    She’s an anteater

    Thankfully, the intern sharing my office walked out the door a split second before I keeled over laughing from this.

  113. I don’t get Rick Rolling. I LIKE that song! I think I first saw it on Meower’s blog and I remember watching the video and grooving and thinking, “Okay, when is something bad going to happen here?” Then the song ended and I searched You Tube for “Together Forever” and grooved a little more and I was like, “Fuck yeah! Rick Astley rules.” It’s like somebody playing a “prank” on me and replacing all my freezer burned peas with mint chocolate chip ice cream or something.

  114. OTM, I don’t think it’s supposed to be a “flaming bag of poo” type prank so much as a “rubber chicken in the high school play” type prank. You know?

  115. TARI, have I ever told you how much I honestly love the album Abacab?

    She’s an anteater

    Hahaha! Also: Oooo… Hall and Oates.

  116. I think, as a relative newcomer, that the work done is pretty damn good, although perhaps a little intimidating for newcomers when they aren’t aware of histories with certain users. My impression is that Shapely Prose occupies an uneasy space between ‘your house, your rules’ that would affect a normal, smallish blog that got say around 20 comments per entry, and a being a public and central space for a lot of bloggers that connect to the things you cover.

    That was a long sentence. In some ways this is a public, open space, because it is THE PLACE that things seem most discussed and most read. You have long term loyal commentators and these in turn draw comments from newcomers like myself. Becoming a public political space doesn’t necessarily mean anyone with a loud mouth should come in and start walking all over the geraniums though. A town square is a space for public use, but it is still regulated…..I iz rambling and I’m sure you get mah point *shushes*

    <3 SP

  117. Aack, secondhand Rickrolling!
    *bleaches brain*

    Seriously, still lmao. All of you. I’m really glad there’s no one in a 20 foot radius of my desk today!

  118. OTM, I don’t think it’s supposed to be a “flaming bag of poo” type prank so much as a “rubber chicken in the high school play” type prank. You know?

    Are you suggesting that not all jokes have to be mean and at the expense of others? Novel….

    Sorry I am totally dominating the comments with my horrible musical taste (it’s not all bad, I like cool bands I swear, I am even going to Pitchfork this year (and not just for the retro bands)). In the spirit of the thread, I will be more self-moderating.

  119. Wow, that’s a hell of a lineup. Though even with Sebadoh (!) and Mission of Burma, it’s not as retro as this year’s Virgin Festival.

  120. Your tits are on my list? Anyone?
    Ok, scratch the radius part of my last comment. The whole building just heard me snort.

  121. Can I just add one more reason to love the mod policies here? Because I can barely make it through reading the comments as is! There are so many wonderful Shapelings with so many smart, funny things to say…..I can’t imagine trying to read everything with the addition of troll wars. I hardly ever post anymore, because it takes me so long to get through the smarty-pants (smarty-pants in a good way) comments as is, and by the time I do, somebody’s already said just what I wanted to say……

    Does anyone mind if I take this last Heineken out of the fridge?

  122. Meowser- When I was a kid, riding around with my Mom doing errands or whatever, I always thought they were saying “ant eater”. I also thought that Elton John was singing “Saxon” (the paint store), not “Sad Song”.

  123. I thank you for giving me the ovaries to enact my own comments policy, after living through the geek fallacies FOUR TIMES already.

    I think Get Off Our Tits should be a tagline.

  124. OTM, I don’t think FatFu ever had a Rickrolling piece. I certainly never posted one myself. I’m not sure why Astley was chosen for this task over, say, Kajagoogoo, other than the fact that “Kajagoogoorolling” is a lot more of a typo trap.

    “Your tits are on my list,” HAHAHAHAHA.

  125. I think that Piggy Moo Moo will have to cover some of these songs with the misunderstood words….

  126. Whenever I hear the Stones’ “Heartbreaker,” I always sing, “Heartbreaker, where’s your bowling ball.” Even though I know that Mick Jagger has probably never even SEEN a bowling ball.

  127. “I have to confess, sometimes the snark level does deter me from posting, mostly because I am admittedly hypersensitive, and posting at SP kind of feels like I’m trying to sit at the cool kids’ table. I don’t want to say something stupid and end up making the people I admire think I’m an idiot.”

    +1

    just so the scope is understood (as if anyone cares), it took me about 10 minutes to actually decide to go ahead and submit even this comment.

    allergic to confrontation? um, no these aren’t hives, they’re, um, uh, freckles. yeah, that’s it. sudden freckles.

  128. YOU’RE ALL WRONG.
    “Getting on my tits” should be sung to the tune of “Puttin’ on the Ritz”.
    I will work on the rest of the lyrics over the next few hours.

  129. MissPrism I love you! Might I suggest something along the lines of “blah blah blah why don’t they know where a neckline sits? Getting in my tits.”

    Sorry, though. Your song. I just got all excited.

  130. Someone here might actually appreciate this.

    My friend Joanna made cake recently, it was Betty Crocker or something. She was saying that what made it so good was that there was pudding in the mix.

    So I bellowed “PUDDING IN THE MIX” a la Frankenstein’s (that’s Fronk-en-steen’s) Monster.

    Eventually I stopped laughing about how hilarious I am. But now I’ve started again.

    Anyway, I cannot wait to see the lyrics to “Gettin’ On My Tits,” which I’m sure will be actually hilarious and not just “aptly timed Mel Brooks reference” hilarious.

  131. Aptly timed Mel Brooks references are one of the main Hilariousness Food Groups!

    Also, my brothers and I used to replace the word “love” with “lunch” in any song that seemed to need it. My favorite was always “You can’t hurry lunch; noooo, you’ll just have to wait….”

  132. LUNCH DON’T COME EASY! IT’S A MEAL OF GIVE AND TAKE!

    Oh, sweet Lord. Why am I refreshing this page instead of making dinner?

  133. Let me be the 9 katrillionth reader to chime in and say I <3 the comments policy. I’ve gotten into a variety of kerfuffles over the years at various message boards about moderation and whatnot, and it just doesn’t seem to sink in with the more stubborn jackholes of the planet that my deleting your comments or telling you to zip it and rip it isn’t denying you your right to free speech. It’s denying you the opportunity to make my brain drool out of my ears from rage. All three of you have a great grip on what/who needs to get the boot.

    My only problem right now is the enormous amount of Phil Collins/Billy Ocean/Hall and Oates echoing around my head. I’m feeling a little bitter about that right now. However, my tits aren’t quite big enough for everyone to get on them.

  134. my sister used to think it said, “every time you go away, you take a piece of meat with you.”

  135. Oh good, I wasn’t the only one who was thinking of Peter Boyle, then. Except, if he’s the one who delivers that line, how will anyone know what it actually is? Will Gene Wilder have to wear a bra?

  136. FillyJonk- Here I am minding my own business, just reading some comments and sippin some water and then *BAM* out of nowhere comes Mr. Show. I think I love you.

  137. I keep hearing “Banana-nate”, in an effort to make it sound like the Dalek’s “Exterminate”.

    Also, in the realm of mis-heard lyrics, I grew up singing, “Oooooor-e-o, I’m gonna shout all night! Ooooooor-e-o, gonna shout it every place!” I knew the letters were “G-L-O-R-I-A”. The fact that this spelled “Gloria” escaped me for many years, long after I learned to spell.

  138. Whilst on the subject; someone quoted out of context from my comment in the previous post about bullying, in a way which implied I thought you guys were being bullies (in context it was not referring to anything of the sort). I didn’t really want to be hand waving about it being pathologically non-confrontational (seriously my landlady just hiked my rent without warning me and I just quietly signed and went home to cry to my mother…sigh). Anyway, point being, I like the snark, I don’t think anyone is guilty of bullying or being unnecessarily snarky (which is a slightly different thing) and it has been worrying me that if you just read the other comment you would think I had so I just wanted to clarify; I don’t, I never have, vive la snark!

  139. I still mis-hear lyrics, Karen, not just when I was little. I was singing Bob Dylan one day… “I eat when I’m hungry/I drink when I drive” and my husband (ooo! First time I wrote “my husband”!) looked at me really strangely and started to laugh: “Do you mean ‘I drink when I’m DRY'”?

  140. fillyjonk: “So I bellowed “PUDDING IN THE MIX” a la Frankenstein’s (that’s Fronk-en-steen’s) Monster.”

    *snort* ROFLOL! Oh my gosh. I love it! I can totally picture the whole sequence with Gene Wilder and the other guy.

  141. Damn, I have one busy day at work and I miss all the comment riffing! At least I can join in the hippie love-fest. :D

    The commenting standards around here are pretty damn high, which makes for excellent reading but also intimidates me as a commenter. Most of the comments are hilarious, thoughtful, and well-spoken (as appropriate to the subject) so I’m only now starting to believe that maybe I don’t sound like a caffeinated toddler at the keyboard in comparison. It’s hard to keep up sometimes, but I wouldn’t have it any other way, y’know? The rest of the internet is full of people hollering into text boxes. Here I don’t need to count Sanity Watchers points because 95 percent of the comments are sane in the first place — and the remaining 5 percent are mocked amusingly, so it’s good times.

    Thanks, Kate, FJ, and SM, for the excellent moderation!

    (Also I want to confess that I totally cut my hair short because of the pixie cut thread.)

  142. From Grease (The One That I Want):

    “I got shoes, they’re made of plywood.”

    I don’t know why I thought that line made sense.

  143. I just inadvertently combined PUDDING IN THE MIX, ‘putting on the Ritz’, and ‘getting off my tits’ whilst singing (at home, thankfully) and came up with ‘pudding on my tits’.

  144. Thank you, Kate, for this excellent peek into how the sausage is made, so to speak. And even though it’s not something I would like to watch everyday, the results sure are tastee.

  145. I gotz nothing, just wanted to say yay moderation!! Breath of fresh air. And I am about to eat some chicken chimichangas. I just wanted to see my monster, as I keep forgetting to look at it.

    Heh – see my monster.

  146. OK, I’ve been laughing so hard I’ve got tears in my eyes. I’m glad I’m not the only one who thinks “POOPER SCOOPER” during that line.

    Hmm… have we gotten off track here? ;)

  147. Also, in the realm of mis-heard lyrics, I grew up singing, “Oooooor-e-o, I’m gonna shout all night! Ooooooor-e-o, gonna shout it every place!” I knew the letters were “G-L-O-R-I-A”. The fact that this spelled “Gloria” escaped me for many years, long after I learned to spell.

    I was eleven years old before I figured out the “D” in Disney’s logo was, in fact, the letter D. I’d always thought it was some funny symbol, you know, like, a logo. It wasn’t until I was rewatching Aladdin and spent a bit too long staring at the VHS label that I was like “THAT’S A D!!! IT SPELLS DISNEY! HOW DO I DEAL WITH THIS???”

    I thought I was complete idiot until I found a facebook group called “When I found out the Disney D WAS a D, it blew my mind” with well over 100,000 members.

    ON THE COMMENTS POLICY: I love it because if I write someting fucked up, then I can count on someone to go, “Hey! That was fucked up!” and I can be like “What? Oh shit, it totally was!” And then I can become slightly less fucked up for the future. Which is basically my life’s goal: Be Less Fucked Up.

    ON SWEARING: About a month ago I got a job at a day care, and I think I’m coping by using even more extraneous swearing on the internet than before, because I can’t even say “that sucks” around the kids. Also, I was suddenly struck by the realization that “play nice” is bad grammar, and it should be “play nicely”. Now, weeks later, I find that we almost always talk to children with improper adverbage, and it drives me up the fucking wall.

    ON DALEKS: OMG DID YOU SEE THE PENULTIMATE EPISODE OF THIS SEASON’S DOCTOR WHO!?!?! I WAS, LIKE, HYPERVENTILATING. I CANNOT WAIT FOR SATURDAY.

    ON BILLY OCEAN: I once wasted an afternoon looking up the number one song in Bilboard’s Top 100 for the birth-week of people I knew and various celebrities. I had never heard the song “Get Out of My Dreams (And Into My Car)” until that day. I thought it was one of the creepiest songs I’d ever heard. It made me angry that I was born while it was popular. I still get shivers when I imagine that voice yelling “HEY! YOU! GET INTO MY CAR!”

    Though, if we get back onto the topic of Doctor Who, David Tennant’s birth hit was, apparently, “Joy to the World (Jeremiah was a Bullfrog)”. I don’t know what his birthday is, but I do remember that.

    There was more I had to say, but I forgot. Which is, quite honestly, probably for the better.

  148. Time-Machine: Fucking awesome Doctor Who episode!!! Oh my god, it was a total Who-verse PARTY!! It made me so happy!!! I can’t stop using exclamation points!!!!

    Also, I forgot to actually comment on, y’know, moderation, which might have been the point of this thread a while back. Maybe others think it’s heavy-handed, but I think it’s just right. I’m so sick of the cruel, ugly comments on other blogs, and especially on newspaper sites and such. Here, the comments are always so interesting, respectful, and really worth reading…. even when they’re about Billy Ocean. Keep up the good work!

    (also, one day I will manage to stay logged into WordPress correctly as marcelle42…. in the meantime, everyone can confuse me with the other Karen with impunity.)

  149. Comments policy is great and I appreciate not being banninated when my first few comments were like “here’s how to display thin privilege and lack of clue.” Then again, maybe I just managed not to submit most of those because I knew they were idiotic?? Either way…the policy works!

    Also: Mondegreens! My sisters and I used to sing “Deck the halls with balls of folly” as a joke, but I STILL don’t know the part of the verse before “yuletide carol…” Also, in that annoying Alanis Morrisette song “You Oughta Know” – I kept wondering why she was complaining about the “cross-eyed bear that you gave to me!” Having not been raised with hymns, the phrase “cross I bear” was not in my mind and I thought he gave her a teddy bear or something. :-)

  150. “I’ve got huge green eyes
    I look at you and I fantasize
    I’ve got huuuuuuuge green eyes. . .”

    And Kate, SM, and FJ, I love what you do here. This is really the only blog that I comment on with any regularity, and it’s both because the topic resonates with me and because I feel like I can have an actual conversation here. Thank you.

  151. but I STILL don’t know the part of the verse before “yuletide carol…”

    AnotherKate, I am fairly certain that it’s “toll the ancient,” but I could be wrong.

  152. GOD BLESS YOU TIME-MACHINE

    Did I sneeze? What did I do? Was it the Jeeves and Wooster link? What???

  153. sarawr: Risha owes me a Coke.

    Wait… make mine a diet.

    (Oh, I slay me.)

    Well, I was going to say “deal!” until that awful joke. Instead, you get 1000 lashes with a wet noodle!

  154. cross-eyed bear that you gave to me

    You mean that’s not the lyric? D:

    ;D

    This is totally obscure, but does anyone remember that 80s song “Tarzan Boy”? Where the chorus is basically just, “OHH OH OH OH OH OH OH OH OOOOOOH OOOH OHH!!”

    During the bridge, I thought they were saying “gimme the otter, gimme the otter”. I still sing it that way. Drives my bf nuts.

  155. Hidey hidey hidey ho, sir.

    AnotherKate:
    Having not been raised with hymns, the phrase “cross I bear” was not in my mind and I thought he gave her a teddy bear or something. :-)

    My understanding is that a lot of people who are raised with hymns just think that the hymn is about a cross-eyed bear. Named “Gladly.”

  156. Jeeves and Wooster!

    My brothers and I quote that particular scene ALL THE TIME. It’s probably the first thing that ever pops into my head when thinking about the song “Puttin’ on the Ritz”. I tried to show it to a friend once and she did not see what was so hilarious about it.

    Obviously, I ended the friendship right there.

    (The only reason I ever saw Jeeves and Wooster was because they had it in the Library a few years ago, and, you know, Free is Good, so I thought, “Why not?”. OMG. BEST LIBRARY RESULTS EVER. I seriously need to get my own copies of the DVDs. Or something. I freaking love that show.)

  157. I don’t know why I capitalized library in that previous post, but it is obviously wrong and must be shot.

  158. I’m in tears over here.

    I always thought it was, “I want to rock and roll all night, and part of every day.”

    When I told my husband that he was all, “You Canadians and your moderation.”

  159. Despite my efforts at reeducation, my man always renders The Clash’s lyrics as:

    Erythromycin!
    Rock the Casbah.
    Rock the Casbah.

  160. Melena- I totally remember that song! I thought it was “taking it over, taking it over”. What is it really?

    Another songL I still don’t know the hell the guy was doing with the rains in Africa…does anyone?

  161. “Another songL I still don’t know the hell the guy was doing with the rains in Africa…does anyone?”

    He was blessing the rains down in Africa. I don’t know why. So help me God, I swear that my high school jazz show choir did an a capella version of that song. I was a soprano and got to sing the synthesizer bits in between the keyboard sections “di-di-di-di-di-dit, di-di-di-di-di-dit”. In fact, we did all of the weird ’80s electronics with voices. Good times.

    I’ve pretty much got that song memorized, right down to the bridge synth solo (which I’m humming right now). I still don’t have a fucking clue what it means.

  162. Whoops, that synth bit should be “di-di-di-di-di-dit, di-di-di-di-di-di-di-di-di-dit”. I hate it when I forget vocalized synth notes.

  163. Despite my efforts at reeducation, my man always renders The Clash’s lyrics as:

    Erythromycin!
    Rock the Casbah.
    Rock the Casbah.

    lol

    I don’t get how “erythromycin” comes out of “Sharif don’t like it,” but rock on. hehe.

  164. I grew up Mormon, and there’s this children’s hymn, and it has this line “In the pretty garden the flowers are nodding”. About half of all Mormon children grow up thinking that the song says “In the pretty garden the flowers are naughty” and wondering what, exactly, the flowers did to be so naughty. Or what God has against flowers. I was one of those children. That song had me terribly confused for YEARS.

  165. sarawr: “I thought it was, “I miss the rains down in Africa.” Shit, now I am totally confused.”

    I’m not sure either version makes more or less sense.

  166. Bravo! I’ll tell you, I’ve been on yahoo groups and such where we tried to be all-inclusive, even asshats have the rights to opinions, that sort of thing. It died because no one wanted to hear what asshats had to say, other than the asshats. Freedom of speech is a wonderful thing, and it gives people the absolute right to start their own forums to voice their opinions. An individual blog, a mailing list, etc. is NOT PUBLIC SPACE. It is a private domain, owned by you, even if accessible to the public. It’s your space and you have the right to hand out STFU to anyone who needs it! Your comments policy probably goes a long ways towards making this a blog where people really feel comfortable participating.

  167. FJ, that’s extra awesome that people think the hymn is about a cross-eyed bear too!!

    A dorky friend of mine sings “lock the taskbar” for “rock the casbah” although he knows that’s not actually it. (And isn’t there an iPod or cell phone commercial where they sing “lock the cashbox?”)

    Does anyone remember “Oh L’amour” by Erasure? Forget not knowing what “amour” was, I thought it was “broke my heart, now I’m baking for you” – it would totally be a way to get back into *my* heart, after all.

  168. (postnote: I am aware that the song I mention [which I can't remember the name of] is not exclusively Mormon. I’ve just never met anyone who wasn’t Mormon who sang it as such regular intervals as to be distressed by the Flower Problem inherent in the misheard lyrics)

    (Speaking of misheard lyrics, and Doctor Who [note- every conversation is actually about Doctor Who]: LOL)

  169. Erythromycin!

    Damn, I have heard a lot of mondegreens for “Rock the Casbah,” but this is the best.

  170. Thank you for providing a space free from the “but what about your health!” et cetera trolls.

    As it is, my blog receives few comments, so I usually don’t bother with comment deleting or anything. (I don’t think I can ban a user at blogspot, but maybe just because I thus far haven’t needed to.)
    But off in lj land I help moderate a community that is heavily moderated for similar reasons, and with similar “why do you hate free speech!” and “they just ban anyone who disagrees with them” responses. And when I see communities that are supposed to be about the same topic, but accept comments from anyone, I can’t read that shit. Nor can I have open conversations about personal issues relevant to the topic in a space where I am likely to get such hateful responses.

    Of course the paranoid part of me is going “uh oh, but I don’t get responses emailed to me here! What if I missed the step 1 and 2 comments to me? PLEASE DON’T BAN ME!” :-P

    (ps, I used to post as “Erin”, with the name linking to the same blog it still does, but I appear to not be the only Erin who comments here so I’ve changed that.)

  171. Excuse my uncontrollable mondegreen jag! What about that song “Down Under” – 80s song about Australia? Where women blow and men blunder? For all I know this IS the lyric. (Ick.)

    Oh, and another friend used to sing “Oh L’Amour” as “broke my heart, now I’m naked for you” but once again I’m sure she knew that wasn’t really it.

  172. Every time “You Oughta Know” came on the radio, my younger brother would do a hilarious impersonation of a cross-eyed grizzly attempting to catch salmon in a river. There was much waving of ineffectual paws and confused-of-face bearitude. It was awesome.

  173. Doesn’t chunder mean puke? I’m trying to think back to Australian counselors in summer camp and may be confusing my words. But I’m glad it’s not “women blow.”

  174. Uh, about the comment policy… It’s obviously working, because this is one delightful community of people who have had me just rolling on the floor, practically in tears. C’mon, old songs with bewbalicious new lyrics. Love it.

    Best mondegreen in my experience came from my brother. I was totally rocking *out* to Margaritaville (Yes, I’m a total Jimmy Buffet freak, also Gordon Lightfoot, wanna make somethin’ of it?) when my brother wondered exactly how it was that he managed to be on the beach and step on a Pop Tart. Poor child is too young to remember pop top cans, it seems.

  175. Time-Machine, I am about to DIE waiting for the last Who this weekend!

    I’m late to the song party, but how about:

    You can’t go on, thinkin’
    Nothings wrong, but bye,
    Who’s gonna ban you troll, tonight?

    Speaking of mondegreens, why is it that tangerines and elephants play in the band looking out my back door?

  176. What about, “She was a fax machine/she kept the motor clean?” Did anyone else sing it that way, possibly for years?

    … Anyone?

  177. Has anyone ever heard the song “Be As” by Prozzak? The chorus is pretty straightforward (or gayforward lol) with this

    Be as white as you want to.
    Be as black as you want to.
    Be as brown as you want to.
    Don’t let anybody stop you.

    Be as straight as you want to.
    Be as gay as you want to.
    You can wait if you want to.
    We all need something to hold onto.

    Anyway, later in the song, as it’s fading out, they start to insert other things. Like “Be as shy as you want to. Be as loud as you want to. Be as short as you want to.” etc.

    Well, towards the very end, they have this line that I, for years, thought was Be as big as you want to. Be as bad as you want to, which to me struck we being, well, bad. It made me think “Big bad wolf” or something.

    Well, I finally realised one day, that’s not what it says. I just misheard ’cause the lyrics were fading out. What it really says is

    Be as thin as you want to. Be as fat as you want to.

    Which makes a lot more sense.

    Anyway…there you go.

  178. Another Kate: Not sure but speaking of creedence, why is there a bad moon on her eyes?

    And I always thought Creedence was singing about the location of a restroom: There’s a bathroom on the right.

  179. At least knowing where the bathroom was would be helpful. :-) And the fact that I couldn’t get from “eyes” to “rise” considering that the song was CALLED “bad moon rising” is a little scary.

  180. Erythromycin!

    Damn, I have heard a lot of mondegreens for “Rock the Casbah,” but this is the best.

    I concur. I had to call Mr. Buttercup.

  181. ON DALEKS: OMG DID YOU SEE THE PENULTIMATE EPISODE OF THIS SEASON’S DOCTOR WHO!?!?! I WAS, LIKE, HYPERVENTILATING. I CANNOT WAIT FOR SATURDAY.

    Only saw half of it, goddammit! Our, uh, trip to England was cut short, and we couldn’t find a full trip online last weekend. Must make Al look again.

    I always thought it was, “I want to rock and roll all night, and part of every day.”
    When I told my husband that he was all, “You Canadians and your moderation.”

    Sniper, that was my biggest LOL of the thread!

    And I remember being at a birthday party at a Pizza Hut in 3rd grade, when “What a Feeling” came on the jukebox, and one of the girls there convinced us all the line was “Take your pants down and make it happen.” Which was pretty much the most scandalous thing I’d ever heard.

    (In actuality “Greased Lightning” was the most scandalous song I’d ever heard at the time, except I totally didn’t know what they were saying on the “She’s a real pussy wagon” line, and I thought they were saying “the chicks’ll scream.” It took me a loooong time before I figured out how dirty that song is.)

  182. for a long time i really thought they were saying, “olly ox in free, take a chance on me!” in the abba song.

  183. Lynne, it is elephants, but tambourines, not tangerines. Of course, that’s a pretty wacky song, since I think the next line asks you to “take a ride on the flying spoon, doo doo doo.”

  184. It was a flying SPOON? Not that it actually makes any sense, but I’m happy to know what it was at long last.

  185. i wouldn’t fancy being on the receiving end of yall’s snarktasticness, but i appreciate the vigilent monitoring of the comments. i have left online groups because the mods didn’t keep up wih the trolls, and it got frustrating. the comments here are, by and large, sane and rational — not to mention hilarious — and that’s refreshing.

    on the sub-topic of mondegreens, until recently, i thought the driver of the “little red corvette” was popping her collar sideways, rather than parking her car sideways…

  186. Hey, a flying spoon makes as much sense as a dinosaur Victrola listening to Buck Owens. (I Googled the lyrics just to see if they really were as trippy as they were in my head. I was not disappointed.)

  187. I just want to thank you for “being a bitch.” I don’t think you ARE being a bitch – this is your baby (all three of you) and your space. I get so frustrated with other blogs and communities and the trolls and troublemakers. I *like* having a drama free place. I still fail to find how people can claim “free speech!” when they act like an asshole in *someone else’s blog*. No one is stopping them from starting their own blog or posting somewhere else. You’re only stopping them from doing it *here*. If someone came into my home spouting hate (or whatever I don’t want to hear) I can tell them to leave. If they don’t like what I have to say they can leave. And it really IS the same damned thing. I truly appreciate Shapely Prose and I appreciate the way you guys run it. Really – thank you.

  188. Is there a good Billy Ocean place?

    Hay, I like Billy Ocean! :P

    I expect one day I may be temporarily banninated for being bitchy. When that day comes it will most likely be something I said relating to what I perceived as overwhelming class blindness, or I just stopped giving a shit about a privileged group. At this point I’d like to say mea culpa, being poor really makes me an angry asshole. I blame the lack of fresh fruit.

    The snark level that fillyjonk lays down pretty much guarantees that I haven’t had my moment of royally fucking up just yet. My fats have been saved from roasting just by sticking with the comment thread long enough to see filly lay the smack down on someone. Better she say it than I do!

  189. I like the comment policy. I also like that if someone sneaks through, s/he gets taken care of by the rest of the commenters.

    About Doctor Who: I will be on an airplane, probably over the Arctic Circle somewhere, when the finale airs. I am not happy about that.

    About mondegreens: Up until a few months ago I thought the line in “Baby Got Back” was ‘down to get the freak shit on’, not ‘down to get the friction on’. I still like my version better.

  190. Yes yes yes. As a blogger, I’ve had a hard time deciding where to draw the line on comments. At first the blog was so small that all was peaceful and cheery, but then the assholes started to show up. I kept receiving comments that I instinctively wanted to delete, but couldn’t figure out what my ‘rules’ were so that I was being consistent. Now I’m at the point where I think, ‘fuck it, this is my space, and no one gets to voice themselves on my space if I don’t want them to.’ Period. And it feels good that way.

    I’ve noticed recently, too, that reading unmoderated comments sections makes me feel ill. Never again! Conversations dominated by assholes are so not worth my time.

    I think I might have to adopt your headache policy!

  191. Now I feel like my comment will just be a drag down from the fun misheard-lyrics derail, but…since we seem to have broken the main Geek Social Fallacies site, I have found a mirror of it here: http://source-dump.blogspot.com/2007/04/geek-social-fallacies.html It’s an oldie but a goodie that definitely deserves to be read, learned and lived.

    Back on topic: No no no no new Doctor could ever possibly be cuuuuuuuute enough after this one! Noooooooooo…..

    Also: I once worked with a girl who thought “Life in the Fast Lane” was “wipin’ the Vaseline”.

  192. *ahem*

    I can’t get you off my tits,
    Boy your pudding’s all I think about,
    I just can’t get you out of my shirt,
    Boy it’s more than I dare to lick it out

    la la la la la la, etc.

    *slinks off*

  193. Wait, it really IS elephants? I always assumed I was hearing it wrong. Is that an anti-mondegreen or something?

    Kate, I hear that the youtube company sells good tickets to England. There’s a travel agent there named tennantntatetravels (see? travel agency) who might be able to help you on your trip. ;)

  194. Time-Machine:
    I don’t know why I capitalized library in that previous post, but it is obviously wrong and must be shot.

    Obviously you had been to the Library. I’m pleased to learn Jeeves and Wooster survived the Vashta Nerada infestation.

    Shapely Prose is the first blog I read each day, even pushing the Guardian into second place. Kate, Sweet Machine and Fillyjonk – you’ve created a wonderful space here, funny, wise and brilliantly moderated. Thanks for all your hard work and I’m so grateful to be part of such a fab community!

  195. I expect one day I may be temporarily banninated for being bitchy.

    I highly doubt that. We know you and we like you. You might get strongly reprimanded if you say something that’s over the line (bitchy is usually fine, but hurtful/offensive often isn’t), but I don’t expect ever to banninate someone who has been a consistently valuable contributor but momentarily gets their ass on their shoulders for whatever reason.

  196. I saw that emerald nuts commercial with the Addicted to Love Girls this morning, it reminded me of what I used to think the lyrics of that song were. Which was:

    Mines little faces you’re a tick tick too low.

    Which, obviously, isn’t even english. But what’s a little kid supposed to do with terrible diction like that?

  197. I don’t expect ever to banninate someone who has been a consistently valuable contributor but momentarily gets their ass on their shoulders for whatever reason.

    I don’t know. I might have to ban her for liking Billy Ocean.

  198. Doesn’t chunder mean puke?

    It does. This is, apparently, what men do in Australia. At least when given a Vegemite sandwich.

  199. In the Prince song, 1999, I always thought the lyric was, “Oh, in two thousand zero zero my deodorant’s out of time. So tonight I’m gonna party like it’s 1999.”

    As a preteen, that struck me as kind of gross. :-D

    I’m another lurker who’s been afraid to comment but likes reading.

  200. Oh man, I have to get internet at home! This thread is making me pee my pants a little. Also, my BFF thought for years that the Go Gos song “Our Lips Are Sealed” was actually “Alex the Seal” about a friendly helping seal named Alex.

  201. Christi, considering that song came out in ’82, I would think his deodorant would definitely be out of time by 2000. Honestly it’s probably grosser if he thinks that his deodorant will still be going strong 18 years later.

  202. sumac, along the same lines, some friends of mine thought that the Rusted Root song “Send Me On My Way” was about Simeon the Whale.

    Also, my sister thought the Verve Pipe song “The Freshmen” went “we were mere refreshments.” Come to think of it, she had several food-related mondegreens that year. She thought Counting Crows’ “A Long December” included the line “it’s one more day I’ve been the canned yam.” (Then again, I thought the other single from that album, “Daylight Fading,” was about anger and elephants. I didn’t really think that, I guess, but I sang it that way anyway.)

    The mondegreen that always pissed me off most was from Nirvana’s “No Apologies.” I am not the only person who thought it went “I’ll take all the blame, I’ll proceed from shame.” Because THAT MAKES SENSE. But no. It’s “aqua seafoam shame.”

  203. Almost forgot, I thought for a long time that the line in “She’s Like the Wind” from Dirty Dancing was, “Feel her breasts on my face”.

  204. Okay, now I have to plug my best misheard lyric: in high school, I was absolutely convinced that the line “I’d like to keep my cheeks dry today” from Blind Melon’s “No Rain” was “I’d like to keep my teen androgyny.” I was tremendously disappointed when I found out the real lyric.

  205. My life is a series of deliberate… well, what other people would think of as mondegreens. My husband is hard of hearing, so when he comes across something he doesn’t know, he’ll throw in something random. Occasionally he tries to get the rhythm of the real word, other times, it’s like SM and her ultimate lemon machine. I give you the following:

    Boston: “All I want is to have my piece of pie.”
    Def Leppard: “Love heaves, loves fine”
    Christina Aguilera: “Ain’t no other van goes fast’r than you, ain’t no other van, old Blue.”
    Billy Joel: “Too many pipes, I wanna change them, but there just won’t be an easy way to get it done.” (to the tune of, “You May Be Right.”)
    Cutting Crew: “I just died on a farm, you’re right.”

    To someone like me who prides herself on getting the RIGHT lyrics, it’s both exasperating and hysterically funny.

  206. Re: Greased Lightning: last time Christopher Walken was on SNL, they did a riff on this, with Walken as the teacher prepping high school kids for a production of Grease, and replacing all the dirty lyrics. Old news, but if you haven’t seen it, it’s pretty funny (at least as far as SNL seems to be these days).

    http://video.aol.com/video-detail/greased-lightning-christopher-walken/1299909061

    I was 13 or 14 the summer Grease was in theaters. I’m such a nerd I had literally no idea how dirty that song was until I was about 30.

  207. I’m obviously way too naive about the sense of entitlement that exists in the blogosphere – I think it’s pretty gutsy that people think they automatically have a right to have their comment posted on your blog. I grow weary of comment threads that completely lose track of the post because readers are so busy attacking each other. And they just tend to attract more of the same. Count me as another grateful SP reader….

    (Just for clarification: this is not to say I grow weary of comment threads that are off track but hilariously funny…).

  208. Come to think of it, she had several food-related mondegreens that year.

    Which reminds me of one from a friend of a friend, who thought Bjork’s “Big Time Sensuality” was “Big Italian Sandwich.” For real.

  209. Chiming in late to raise a glass of Moderation STFU to our charming hostesses. You’re doing a very good job and I’m trying to learn the skill.

  210. Coming back to this thread today was the best (and worst) idea ever. I’m killing myself silently laughing, and not getting any work done. :D

  211. long time listener, first time caller….

    I’ve really enjoyed your blog for the last few monthes, and I just wanted to add a few thoughts. While I think that active dissent is the hallmark of a thriving democracy, blah blah blah, it was a good reminder that this is not a democracy, but rather a katehardingocracy, and as welcome as you want your readers to feel this is, at the end of the day, your forum, which people can either respect/acknowledge or not.

    I think you explained this really well without distancing people with divergent viewpoints…..that said, in terms of the conversation that inspired your clarification, I think that allowing someone like Tal to comment (who had the courage, by the way, to put his/her opinions out there) gives your readers the chance to respond to such opinions in a “safe space,” which can be empowering.

    I guess I think you just missed a “teachable moment” (sorry, M.Ed. student) by not allowing Tal to continue to post, in that while you obviously reached your limit (which again, is totally your perogative!) the conversation was inspiring some interesting points and allowing your readers to advocate for themselves/their opinions.

    While I completely agree that it is the job of the moderator to step in before a conversation devolves to the point of “you suck!” “no, you suck!” I think that a little active dissention is healthy and beneficial to all readers.

    Thanks for providing this forum!

  212. And back again today to just say how much I LOVE the snark when comments are out of line. I am sarcastic as all hell and I LOVE LOVE LOVE to see other people dish it out, too. It makes me feel less… bitchy? Snarky? Sarcastic? Not that it’s bad to be those things, just that I tend to get overboard with it, I guess, and it’s not nearly as funny as the shit that goes down here! I love that I come here and feel like I’m sitting around shootin’ the shit with my friends, even though I don’t speak up often. Now why can’t more of my real life friends be kick-ass fatties? I seriously have 2 fat friends – one male, one female. What the F?

  213. I was just listening to the Dixie Chicks and thought of another one. In Long Time Gone I thought for the longest time that one line was “I ain’t looked at porn since I don’t know when”. Didn’t seem too weird of a line, but then I listened harder and thought “Oh, the line is really ‘I ain’t shucked a corn’, ok.” Actually, it was “I ain’t honked the horn”. Double oops.

  214. Now you’re talking about music and everybody agrees with your comment policy, so I don’t even know if it’s adequate to try to comment here. Personally, I don’t think it’s very democratic to ban people, but it IS your blog. I also understand that you may have many trolls. I don’t know if I’ve been extremely lucky or if my blog is just too small (only about 400 visitors a day), but so far, in five months, I haven’t had any trolls, and I even accept anonymous comments. Granted, my blog is not only about fat and body acceptance.
    I think I commented here in your blog about five times, and though I haven’t been banned, I feel completely ignored. More than once I asked the bloggers here a few questions, and these questions haven’t been addressed. I have no idea what I did wrong. What I tried to do was start a dialog, since I’m Brazilian, and there aren’t many body acceptance blogs in Brazil. I wanted to learn from your very successful experience. But I haven’t seen an opening for this here. It really does look as if it’s okay to comment, as long as nobody disagrees. I’ve seen people criticized here not for being trolls, but merely for disagreeing or using sarcasm. That’s not my case. I’ve just been ignored, which I can only guess makes me one of the commenters that make your right eye hurt. And now I guess I’ll just be banned.
    Somehow, I don’t feel I am alone in feeling unwelcome here. But like you said, your numbers just keep growing, so why bother starting a dialog?
    http://www.escrevalolaescreva.blogspot.com

  215. Lola, FWIW, I’ve noted your presence here and think of you as a semi-regular commenter. I don’t know what to tell you about your feeling of being ignored, except that given that there are hundreds of comments on some of our posts, we can’t possibly answer every one of them. There are lots of comments where I read along and go “hmm” and nod, but don’t have anything specific to say back.

    But like you said, your numbers just keep growing, so why bother starting a dialog?

    Because a blog is a monologue. Seriously.

  216. I am in summer camp. I have been surrounded by emotionally needy sixteen-year-olds and their body issues for five weeks. It is my day off. I am slightly tipsy. I read the spaghetti language thread, and now I am reading this one, and it is to make me SO HAPPY.

    Oh, Bring It On. Such a slightly guilty but ultimately awesome pleasure.

    I have NO GUILT where Eliza Dushku is concerned.

    Or, maybe they all saw the mincemeat you made out of “surprise me cunt” Rick

    Aaaaaand I’ve just fallen over. That thread may have been my favourite thing of all time.

    LUNCH DON’T COME EASY! IT’S A MEAL OF GIVE AND TAKE!

    Oh sweet fuck, I love you all.

    I am off to drink more, because there are still twelve hours til I have to take care of tiny people. Think well of me! *totters off*

  217. Personally, I don’t think it’s very democratic to ban people, but it IS your blog.

    Right, meaning it is NOT a democracy.

    And I’m sorry you feel ignored, but you have to have noticed that most posts have over 100 comments. We are active responders much of the time, depending on what else we’re doing that day, but the blog is not our full-time job. (Well, it’s almost Kate’s full-time job, when she’s not busy writing a book, but she is.) And personally I’m more inclined to respond to someone who’s a known quantity, just as in a room with over 100 people you’d be more likely to chat with the ones you’d met before. Five comments is just not enough for that. If you flounce because you’re not getting enough immediate attention, well, sorry, but I basically have to say “oh well.” Maybe you can hang out at a smaller blog where you can get more personal service. Not everywhere is for everybody. We are not all fat things to all fat people.

  218. You know what you can do with some of those mondegreens you’re disappointed aren’t actually real, though? Write your own hit song with them! Most commercially successful example I can think of: John Fred and His Playboy Band’s 1968 smash “Judy in Disguise (With Glasses),” which was born of Fred’s having thought he heard the Beatles sing, “Lucy in disguise with diamonds,” and when he found out that “really clever lyric” wasn’t what he thought it was, he thought, well, somebody should have that in a song, so off he went.

  219. More Mondegreens!

    When my brother the Wombat was a very small child, his favorite Christmas carol was from Mahalia Jackson’s Christmas album, and he insisted it was called Oh Jelly on the Mountain…but he could never quite figure out what that had to do with Christ’s birth.

  220. Maybe I’m weird (although in the light of 289 responses when I *started* reading this, I doubt it) but I tend to take the position that it’s your blog, and it’s your choice about who’s welcome and who isn’t. Always has been, always will be, and if I don’t like it, I don’t have to read it or comment on it.

    Contrariwise, my blog is my space, which means it gets filled up with the stuff I want to put in it (and a lot of that is just pointless wibble, but some of it is reviews, and some of it is political musings, and some of it is about games, and other bits are fanfic and by now you all probably get the point) and nobody else has the right to tell me what should and shouldn’t be there. Given my blog is probably regularly read by about twenty people at most (and the arrival of a comment is something I look forward to with interest) I don’t have to worry too much about moderation or similar. However, should that day ever arrive, I don’t think I could go far wrong with something similar to what you have here.

    Or in other words, youze are all doin’ just great. Good on ya!

    PS: When a blog post on moderation styles turns into a game of catch over Mondegreens, I call the blog in question a Good Place To Be.

  221. Caitlin: “I have NO GUILT where Eliza Dushku is concerned.”

    Yeah, um, did you see Soul Survivor? Because I did. And I am not proud of that fact. Also, I own The New Guy.

    Dear Eliza, you are very pretty but I would like it if you were in a movie I could publicly admit to having seen.

    Regarding mondegreens (yay, I learned a new word today!): I used to think that song from Grease went, “I got you in some pliers, and I’m losing control.” No, I had no idea what it meant, but at that age I also didn’t know what “we’ll be getting lots of tit” meant, so… it didn’t bother me unduly.

  222. I can never figure out how so many people on the internet think they own other people’s space! I’ve heard such silly people argue that comment moderation is against ‘free speech’

    Free speech means you’re allowed to have your own blog. It doesn’t mean you have the power to take over someone elses.

    Keep up the moderation, I’m all in favour of it.

  223. Have to confess I haven’t read the whole thread – cannot keep up here a’tall.

    I don’t always agree with the moderators here and I don’t always agree with their style of moderating. But I believe that a blog (or discussion board) owner has the right to set the style so these disputes are minor.

    What I love as a reader is that the moderators create a safe space for FA (I liked the point someone made that this means the conversation can get beyond FA 101). And what I particularly appreciate as a poster is that, although I don’t always share the moderator’s mindset, I do always know why they’re moderating. That is, I know who they’re moderating and why they feel that post required moderation. I don’t really care what the rules are (that’s the owner’s business and either I’m willing to follow them or I’m not), but I think it is crucial that the rules be clearly stated and consistent.

    In my experience it isn’t irritating rules that kill a good conversation, but rather rules that change without notice or otherwise can’t be followed.

  224. (Shiloh, I just saw that you’re on, so I thought I’d take a chance and tell you that I left a note for you on South Bend Craig’s List in personals/strictly platonic/w4w. Okay, everyone else, carry on.)

  225. Some really funny mondegreens can come from foreign languages, especially when you don’t know it’s another language. I know The Beatles’ Michelle has a ton of them; when I was a kid, I thought it was “Michelle, my belle, Sunday monkeys come play piano some, play piano some.”

  226. Okay, now I have to plug my best misheard lyric: in high school, I was absolutely convinced that the line “I’d like to keep my cheeks dry today” from Blind Melon’s “No Rain” was “I’d like to keep my teen androgyny.” I was tremendously disappointed when I found out the real lyric.

    I thought it was “I’d like to keep my cheat in stride today”. (Or cheating stride). This is what happens when you don’t publish lyrics on your liner notes.

  227. I know, A Sarah, I know! I thought we were made entirely of pink sparkles and puppy dog tail for 12 weeks. I’m sure that’s in my contract somewhere.

    You’ll be pleased to know I proceeded from ‘tipsy’ to ‘wasted’ as god intended, then spent the whole of the Fourth having to leave rehearsals to throw up. I think I’m filing that under ‘lessons learned’.

    Dear Eliza, you are very pretty but I would like it if you were in a movie I could publicly admit to having seen.

    Eee hee hee. Exactly.

  228. right fucking ON, kate.

    i don’t always have time to read the comments – observe the nigh-fucking-300 comments on this very thread for instance. but! i know that when i *do* have time, or have something to add of my own? that it will be totally worth it to a) add it and b) see what others added (within time constraints – 300+ comments is some kinda commitment for time).

    so yay to the itchy banning fingers! woo hoo! i love that headache is enough to constitute a banning, anyway. when did listening to the ol’ gut instinct become so unpopular anyway? i blame our legalistic nightmare of a government.

  229. Great post, Kate.

    And hallie, you have the simplest yet cutest monster. I am jealous, ha!

  230. I’ve probably read about half the comments (I couldn’t take the music discussions.) And I agree whole-heartedly – love this blog, appreciate the ‘bannination’ policy and lack of total numpties.

    And Fillyjonk, I now keep singing ‘PUDDING IN THE MIX’ in my head ‘putting on the ritz’ stylee… At least it’s driven Phil Collins out of my head.

    Big fat kisses to all my fellow shapelings!

  231. I’ve noticed that it’s very easy to type nasty things when (a) you have little or no self-esteem; (b) you hate your life; and (c) it’s over the internet, where you don’t run the risk of getting sucker punched, like you would offline.

    Everybody else seems to be acquainted, so I feel like a bit of an odd thumb commenting. In lieu of typing anything else that might be serious, I’ll…

    Well, i was going to tell an off-color joke, but I don’t know if that would be appropriate. I’m going to read a few more posts and get a better feel for how things go around these parts.

  232. I thought it was “I’d like to keep my cheat in stride today”. (Or cheating stride). This is what happens when you don’t publish lyrics on your liner notes.

    I thought it was “cheating strategy,” LOL.

  233. YES! That is what I also thought it was, and I couldn’t remember for the life of me. (I said to SM, “I don’t know what I thought it was but there is no way in hell I thought it was ‘keep my cheeks dry today’ because it doesn’t sound remotely like that.'”)

  234. As a brand new member, I appreciated having my first post monitored – the last thing I want to do is start off on the wrong foot.
    And I sooo love being a bitch in a good way (the Good Bitch of the West?)! Your post was awesome – I can hear my 18 year old son saying, “Oh god Mom, you mean there are MORE of you out there?”
    Thanks for the job you guys do – I’m looking forward to reading more.

  235. Hey Kate. I just wanted to say that I really, really appreciated the way you corrected me (giving the benefit of the doubt, explaining what the problem was, not singling me out) when I went wrong in the comments a few weeks ago when I was new. Anybody that thinks your a bitchy moderator (not that there’s anything wrong with that) is a crazy person.

  236. I like your justification for your moderation policy:

    It’s your blog, and you can moderate it how you want. Period. You don’t need anyone else’s permission or approval.

    If anyone disagrees, they can get their own blog and moderate it the way they want.

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