« first day (4044 days earlier)      last day (51 days later) » 

1:01 AM
In a state-funded poll of 1600 Russians, 19% failed to correctly name the full name of the USSR, with 10% saying that they did not know the words behind the abbreviation, and 9% incorrectly deciphering the abbreviation. wciom.ru/analytical-reviews/analiticheskii-obzor/…
In the 18-24 age bracket, only 59% replied correctly (СССР = Союз Советских Социалистических Республик)
6% of the poll sample could name all the 15 Soviet republics.
So, basically it takes just 30 years for a state to become kind of a myth.
I wonder what a poll of former Roman Empire citizens would disclose in AD 505.
In a history test in school, one pupil was covertly asking me for answers, and commented with "wow" a couple of times when I described the War Communism period (1918-1921). That was in 1994.
A computational chemistry tool shows that Omicron is crafty at escaping antibodies: twitter.com/EricTopol/status/1468024011196039171
It just does not bind them well enough.
But that is just one tool.
1:52 AM
Just for the record, 'Xi' is not a populay family name in China. Just say it is the family name of the current president of China and skip all the head-acratching
@CowperKettle One wonders, though, what percentage could name those things thirty years ago.
@Mitch Did they skip the xi-variant because of the Chinese president?
2:25 AM
@Cerberus Yes. Because it would make it seem like the virus came from China and that would make him angry.
@tchrist Typical Chinese superstition...
It is a Chinese virus, after all.
A city with a great climate. Always from 10 to 20 C: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bogot%C3%A1
2:49 AM
Yet it's almost on the equator
Bogota high plains
Climber's paradise
+15C, sunny and cool.
Highest temp ever recorded: +30C. Heck, we had weeks of temp over 30C this summer.
3:21 AM
@Cerberus yes. That is what I was hinting at. I don't -know- it's true but the given excuse is what is obviously not the case. And it's the more likely explanation anyway
@Mitch What is 'the given excuse'?
3:56 AM
@Cerberus the official excuse is what I said above 'because it's a popular family name'
4:24 AM
@Mitch I don't get why that should be a reason at all.
I'm sure many words are common names.
4:38 AM
Mexico City is a huge metropolis with a population of about 21.3 million people
2 hours later…
6:23 AM
Hey everyone. I'm not native speaker and my query might not fit main site. Could you please help?
So I have to write something on a wedding gift and I can't figure out how to write it in simple way without being rude. Here's my options:

"With warm wishes to the newly married couple"


"Best wishes to the newly married couple"

"Best wishes to the newly weds"

"Best wishes to the happy couple"
Any thoughts?
7:08 AM
@Cerberus About 95% - they still can recall it, judging by the figure in the next-to-last column )))
@Vikas "With warm wishes to the newly married couple" sounds good!
I'm also not a native speaker.
@Vikas Here, I would combine "newlyweds" into a single word.
@CowperKettle Okay. weds is not a word btw right? It's just casual English?
Google/Wikipedia shows "newlyweds" is a noun.
7:25 AM
Noun: newlywed (plural newlyweds)
  1. A recently married person
Adjective: newlywed (not comparable)
  1. recently married
Yep, a noun
26 yo citizen of Yekaterinburg gets 15 years of penal colony for burying his classmate alive over a debt of 500 rubles (less than $10).
The murderer's accomplice Sergei Zapechnya (Сергей Запечня) was destined to get a similar term of 15 to 17 years, but a year ago he froze to death at a bus stop (probably drunk?)
I googled for Sergei Zapechnya and found his school photos at the website of the school he attended in the zeroes.
@CowperKettle Thanks. I'll go with "With warm wishes to the newlyweds". Should be fine?
@Vikas Yes ))
Hopefully I'll gift it tonight!
@Vikas Good luck! ))
@CowperKettle is it some emoji :D
7:40 AM
@Vikas No, it's Sergei Zapechnya, who killed his former classmate over a debt of $8
And then got drunk and froze to death at a bus stop.
The school's page says that he is a good boy, loves playing guitar, and "will surely become a famous hero".
@CowperKettle I've heard similar cases in past in India too
Google translate did a good job at translating this into English.
He is "ready to help everyone". He helped his friend to club the guy unconscious and cover him with a layer of earth.
8:02 AM
Hello guys.

I want to construct a snetence that express that something was missing at some time in the past when I was doing something.

Something like this:

At the time I was building the house, I hadnt had these tools on my disposal

Not sure if ^^^ is correct

When I was building the house, I didnt have these advanced tools on my disposal
@Hairi this, except on should be at
Why not:

When built the house, I hadn't had these tools at my disposal

Should that be in Past perfect ? Really dont know :(
8:21 AM
Because by using the Past Perfect you're moving the fact of "having tools" further into the past.
You don't need that. The Past Simple will do well.
@CowperKettle Ahamm 💡 - Makes perfect sense :) Thanks CowperKettle
No problem ))
8:43 AM
Russian teacher from the Kursk Region announced a public experiment: he would live on his official salary of 15 000 rubles/month.
That's $200 per month. He announced that he will describe all his spendings.
8:59 AM
What does )) mean? Smile emoji?
Two days after he announced his experiment, the Russian police opened a criminal case against him over a social network post he published 2 years (!) ago, and charged him with extremism.
@Vikas Yes ))
Q: What do ")" or multiple ")))" mean in an internet conversation?

fedorquiI sometimes see Russian people add some ) to the end of sentences, and sometimes even many of them: )))). I recently read: In Russian: ))))))) is a loud laugh So I wonder: what does it mean when it is just one of them )? And is it a loud laugh when it comes with multiple of them?

9:19 AM
In the past this medai was one of my favorites
Facebook has stamped them, RT probably not so happy about it
Maybe they do have some good materials, but I dislike them because they are under Putin's control.
1 hour later…
10:36 AM
Minus 13°C
11:00 AM
Footpaths are covered in ice, and some people wear special cleats that are secured to the shoes by rubber bands
Ice traction cleats
12:02 PM
AI generates art that I would never be able to paint by hand
1 hour later…
1:08 PM
In Moscow, a man refused to wear a mask and shot 2 guys to death in a Multiservices Center twitter.com/oldLentach/status/1468201384667398152
2:07 PM
CowperKettle I had written it and just gifted it. It went really well )))
2:57 PM
@CowperKettle Are there many guns in Russia?
3:30 PM
@Cerberus I've no idea
@Vikas Glad to hear that!
3:41 PM
@CowperKettle Is it possible to get one, as an ordinary citizen?
@Cerberus I think yes, on the black market, or by pretending to use it for hunting
"over the last 5 years, the number of gun holders in Russia decreased by 500 thousand persons" tass.ru/obschestvo/11093949
3.7 mn persons own 6.5 mn guns
"As part of the crime prevention program, every year 180 to 200 thousand guns are taken away from their owners" tass.ru/obschestvo/11093949
For improper handling, improper documentation etc.
Nice job.
Here at least Russia had done well
I don't think that you can just carry it around in Russia. Someone might notice and arrest you.
I believe you could carry it along on your way to a hunting area.
But not in a consealed fasion in your clothes.
The last 10 years, metal scanners have been installed in all bus stations, train stations, airports etc.
You'd have to take some effort to carry a gun to a train, but not much effort.
Just board a train at a street station, not at the city's train station.
Or board a train in the woods, at some village in the boondocks.
And viola, you are free to blast the train carriage to smithereens.
4:13 PM
@CowperKettle That's still a huge number. But at least it is decreasing.
@Cerberus Maybe they are long-barrel guns
I think that the police would not issue a permit to buy a revolver
And a long-barrel gun is hard to conceal
For comparison.
@CowperKettle Right, and (semi)-automatic guns are also much worse.
I knew a couple of persons owning guns. They were long-barrel hunting rifles.
Of course criminal-minded people can make an obrez by sawing off the barrel
obrezat' means "to cut", "to saw off"
I know some people who hunt, so they must have guns. It's the only way to get one here, and it's hard, praesumably.
> In the USSR, firearms with a barrel length of less than 500 mm were illegal and had to be confiscated
4:18 PM
In the Ukrainian village of Narodichi where my dad lived as a kid in the early 1950s, they played with German guns. But these guns had their barrels permanently wrecked, such as by welding
And gradually the police removed them from cicrulcation, to the bitter disappointment of boys.
Narodychi (Ukrainian: Народичі) is an urban-type settlement in Korosten Raion, Zhytomyr Oblast, northern Ukraine. It was the administrative center of the Narodychi Raion, and after the reform in 2020, the city became part of the Korosten Raion. It lies on the northern side of the Uzh River, 134 kilometres northwest of Kyiv. Population: 2,883 (2021 est.) == History == Narodytchi is located in the historic region of Polesia. Narodytchi was first mentioned in historical records in 1545. According to the census of 1897, the total population is 4576 including 2054 Jewish inhabitants. It attained the...
The village was retaken by the Red Army on 14 November 1943
Your poor father.
No, he was born after the war, and he was born in the Urals ))
His mom was from Ukraine, and dad from the Urals
They met in Vladivostok, in the Far East, during the war with Japan.
Or maybe just prior to.
She was a war nurse, he was a midshipman of the Far Eastern Fleet
in The Periodic Table, Apr 9 '16 at 16:54, by Loong
@CowperKettle I was in Narodichi. I took soil samples there.
I chatted about his in 2016 in the Chemistry chat, and suddenly the guy said that he was in Narodychi
Table of radiation levels in Narodichi in the days after the Chernobyl plant explosion
Up to 3 Roentgen per hour
in The Periodic Table, Apr 9 '16 at 17:05, by Loong
The people of Narodichi say that the village was saved be the trees (you can see on my first picture).
in The Periodic Table, Apr 9 '16 at 17:05, by Loong
Because the trees filtered the fallout from the air.
Isn't it more likely that they blocked radiation from the plant, or blocked certain wind patterns?
Maybe it was just a gossip.
in The Periodic Table, Apr 9 '16 at 17:09, by Loong
There is also a story that the people of Narodichi did not know about the accident.
They learned about it, only because the busses with the people from the evacuated zone lost a child during a break in Narodichi.
In Siberia, we also did not know what to think about the Chernobyl explosion.
That summer, we were afraid to go to the Black Sea - what if it was already contaminated ))
Just a year before the disaster, a friend of my father was trying to talk my family into buying a small house or a flat in a town near to Chernobyl.
Because of great nature and climate.
In order to live there after retiring.
4:47 PM
Too bad for him your family didn't buy it.
> SURVEY 5 DOG PRONOUNS. please be over 18 and comfortable taking a survey in english. survey is about DOG PRONOUNS I cannot stress this enough.
I thought at first that I was not qualified t take the quiz because unfortunately I am not a dog
But then I thought maybe they can't know I'm not a dog
Not many dogs make it to 18yo
So it must be intended for old dogs
like the sociology of how dogs are learning how to use the new pronouns
Since I'm a dog I want to do the right thing, I want people to like me because I love them. So I want to answer right.
I mean that's my motivation for everything. I love to eat food because somebody made the food for me and I want them to be happy about the food they made.
The page with pictures stumped me. I could not discern whether the dogs are male or female, and chose "they/them".
If I made the food, well I suppose it's OK. If I made it and it was bad I wouldn't bother.
@CowperKettle I know! How can you tell their sex if you can't smell them.
That was a question'
or was it?
In Russia we don't use neuter pronouns for animals
it's missing the "it" option. I happily refer to dogs as it
4:58 PM
@CowperKettle to be less silly, in English, 'they/them/their' (the only third choice) is not neuter or inanimate. It is the modern way to avoid specifying gender but maintain everything else.'
@MattE.Эллен Right. Lots of people use 'it'.
Pumpkin carriage, in the center of Yekaterinburg
From the fairy tale about Cinderella
I answered all 'they' because I couldn't possibly know the sex. And if I did know the sex, it'd be either he or she. because a dog can't tell us the pronoun they want us to use.
But also, on reflection, if it were really the situation in real life (ie not the questionnaire) I would use 'she' for prissy dogs, and 'he' for macho dogs, and 'he' for not obvious.
And for cats it would be 'she' by default until someone said 'he's a dude' and then I'd stutter a bunch with mostly 'she' until I got it right.
for cats it's "atchoo"
5:15 PM
@MattE.Эллен !!
@Cerberus well, I can make an exception for you
In June 2021, this gay family featured in an ad by a Russian company. A wave of hatred followed, and the family was forced to flee to Spain.
The shopping network was forced to take down the ad, fearing persecution from the state. Under a law passed several years ago, "incitement of homosexuality" is a crime.
Officially the crime is "homosexuality propaganda aimed at children", but since every and all publications can potentially be seen by children, Russian courts just fine and punish everybody who promotes LGBT rights.
@MattE.Эллен So kind.
@CowperKettle That sentence doesn't make sense at all. Shouldn't it be 'the family escaped to Spain'?
haha because compare Spain and Russia
How is "escape" different from "forced to flee"? Basically, they escaped persecution.
Moscow -5C, Malaga 15C
> Yuma said "I was just knocked back by comments to my granddaughter, where some people wrote that they wanted to rape her, kill her, stab a child who is just sitting and smiling in the photograph".
@CowperKettle I'm joking
5:30 PM
I'm glad they escaped to a country where Putin's friends buy their luxury mansions )))
I mean Spain has its problems too
But at least it is warm
or actually, maybe it's worse because the Spanish don't know how to deal with temps below 10C
We have a saying in Russian, "he looks quite an idiot, but he does not eat soap" (дурак дураком, но мыло не ест). Thus Putin's friends are happy to incite hatred to LGBT and NATO at home, but still buy their mansions in the West.
They saying implies that in reality the person is a bit wily and only tries to come off as a simpleton.
Spain is doing pretty well, these days.
unemployment is not so great
Still much better than what happens in most other countries.
You can still buy food and live indoors.
5:34 PM
They've stopped doing executions and torturing and political prisonering and such for at least 30 years.
at least publically
Spain was pretty bad under Franco, but it has come a long way.
Yes, Francisco Franko did not eat soap. He shook hands with Hitler, but stopped short of going to war.
Comparable to France, in many ways.
Every dictatorship is just fine as long as you're rich
Almost every country is fine as long as you're rich.
5:36 PM
@Cerberus Spain compared to France?
@Cerberus YOu got my joke
Oh, haha.
sort of
stops laughing
Why stop?
5:37 PM
> Five thousand dollars or a five year sentence may well be
For a man who had the nerve to think that travelin' is free
Oh, why'd he waste his time to see a dictator's reign
When he could have seen democracy by travelin' on to Spain?
I mean France was an actual monarchy for ... cripes... until 1870?
I mean how much did the French revolution really change?
Probably thereabouts.
that sounds pretty idiotic
Spain is still a monarchy.
France switched between monarchy and republic a few times before 1900.
They had a couple Napoleons
5:38 PM
Those are labels... what was really happening government wise?
The UK is still a monarchy but the monarch hasn't done anything since... George III? and he was nutballs crazy out of it most of the time, right?
Well, at least they tried, with the French revolution.
Trying is not bad.
So even though Spain is currently a monarchy, it's been pretty democratic since the early 80's
Revolution does not always play out good.
@CowperKettle Yes
In the history of France, the First Republic (French: Première République), officially the French Republic (République française), was founded on 21 September 1792 during the French Revolution. The First Republic lasted until the declaration of the First Empire on 18 May 1804 under Napoléon Bonaparte, although the form of the government changed several times. This period was characterized by the fall of the monarchy, the establishment of the National Convention and the Reign of Terror, the Thermidorian Reaction and the founding of the Directory, and, finally, the creation of the Consulate a...
5:40 PM
And the majority of terror happened when France was besieged by the alliance of monarchies.
The French Second Republic (French: Deuxième République Française or La IIe République), officially the French Republic (République française), was the republican government of France that existed between 1848 and 1852. It was established in February 1848, with the Revolution that overthrew the July Monarchy, and ended in December 1852, after the 1851 coup d'état and when president Louis-Napoléon Bonaparte proclaimed himself Emperor Napoleon III and initiated the Second French Empire. It officially adopted the motto of the First Republic, Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité. == Revolution of 1848... ==
It took the demolition of a couple of buildings for the USA to go on a roll and start attacking countries.
Same with France. When it felt threatened, murders intensified.
and the French revolution did srat up a lot of democratic things that survived through Napoleon and Charles what was it X? and N III and that brings us to 1870 and losing a war.
@Mitch Somehow, Americans always seem to assume that monarchs have power.
They should know that, in modern countries, they do not.
They probably also have no idea how many such monarchies there are.
@Cerberus 1st and 2nd republics seem almost blips in comparison to monarchies and dictatorships... I don't know how democratic France was 1848-1871
or really ever.
5:43 PM
Napoleon III tried to rule by promoting his popularity and having referendums, AFAIK.
Like Vladimir Putin.
Not totally monarch, but a populist monarch.
Notice how, on each continent, the blue and purple monarchies are amongst the best places to live.
@Cerberus well that's why I'm wondering about France. Nominally much more monarchy than not in the 19th c. but I don't have a good feel for what it was really like.
The elite ruled, as normal.
5:45 PM
also a nominal democracy can by somewhat ... clears throat ... problematic
cough Russia cough
What a country calls itself matters little.
Yes, DOG PRONOUNS matter little to countries
So if I call my nascent political entity 'Dogocratic Dogpublic of Dogistan' and there are a few cats who are rich who we allow to hang out with us and smoke cigars, then the UN is cool with that?
Putin has finished his chat with Biden.
Don't laugh. It has an awful caste system, with the German Shepherds in control of the police force, Dobermans and Rottweilers national defense, border collies are the lawyers. Also anybody can shit anywhere they like.
@CowperKettle OMG Putin is only 69. He's going to live forever.
5:53 PM
And corgies?
@CowperKettle I was thinking hard about corgies but I couldn't figure it out so I didn't say anything about them
They're very tenacious and willful and quick to anger but also to reconcile.
And they're very good looking.
Minister Shuvalov, Putin's friend, spent 40 million rubles from the Russian budget to carry his corgies to a dog show using private planes. This was one of Navalny's investigations.
I mean in their face.
@CowperKettle All dogs deserve that. But good for them corgies
5:55 PM
I also like corgies
They look always smiling and in a good spirit
Shuvalov's relatives were so stupid as to post photos of the corgies in Instagram.
And thus Navalny's team got their clues.
I've babysat a corgie. She (her name is Rosie so it is easy for me to remember the sex and pronoun) is so excited to see us after a long time that she pees.
@CowperKettle Yes exactly
and they're small enough that they're good inside dogs but not so small that they seem fragile. and they don't try to overcompensate for their short stature by yapping all the time. They're not nervous like dachsunds or chihuahuas
I also liked this kind of dog
I played with it during a bicycle ride
It's the kind of dog that starred in the Mask movie in the 1990s
Dogs that are not breeds tend to be all around good dogs.
5:59 PM
Very, very playful
(they're all good dogs)
@CowperKettle good friends
It clutched the plastic plate and I turned around and it kept clutching
I hope I did not damage its teeth
yeah. I'd hope that they wouldn't try that game if their teeth could hurt by pulling like that.
That was back in 2016.
A ride to the town of Revda.
don't tell me... -10C?
6:02 PM
No, it was in the summer, so probably +10°C
Oh, not the summer. It was 17th of September 2016.
I'm so fragile...yesterday it was 15C here and I thought.. maybe I'll go for a ride? and I stepped outside and thought... nah
The dog kept running after us. We were afraid it would get lost.
oh a smaller dog
maybe still young?
Maybe. I don't know what their proper size is ))
@CowperKettle he found friends to play with
6:05 PM
1 hour later…
7:30 PM
7:40 PM
Chinese word of the day: (/ling/), meaning zero
Also means "to fall", "to wither and fall".
> 感激涕零 ― gǎnjītìlíng ― grateful to tears (since tears fall)
> I just donated $100 to an organization for blind kids. What gets me is they'll never see a penny of it.
Modern Russian banknotes have special bumps for blind persons
@Cerberus If you go through the Greek alphabet, many look like real words but they don't look like peoples names.
Except maybe science fiction names.
"The evil Lord Omicron, ruler of all Zorg"
So baseline, the greek alphabet as a naming device should be pretty innocuous, but they skipped over 'nu' because it sounds like English 'new' (that's the reason the WHO gave and it seems pretty reasonable from an anglocentric point of view), and they skipped 'xi' also for the reasons stated by WHO.
But that last reason doesn't hold water as 'Xi' is not a common surname anywhere.
But it is the name of one particular prominent person. So 'popular name' seems like a euphemism for 'Chinese president's name'
OK goddamit I'm really sick of apostrophes being the same as single quotes. It makes me a little nauseous every time I have a quote but it has a contraction inside.
Obviously much more nause... much more nauseat... screw it makes me much more nauseous than closing my open parens. I mean -I- don't see the lack of a closing paren so why should I care. I'm not some lisp machine.
@CowperKettle A very liberal and caring government.
> Why don't Kleptomaniacs understand puns? They always take things literally.
A: Meaning of "all the boards did shrink" in The Rime of the Ancient Mariner

GerryIf you are willing to believe that the poem is an allegory of Coleridge's seven days of creation / epochs of the Earth (as described in notebook entries circa 1818/1819 and a more extensive entry dated 27 May 1828 anticipating a Magnum Opus of his own), especially in light of Coleridge appending ...

Literary criticism is the maddest thing.
> Why can't you hear a pterodactyl taking a piss?
Silent p.
8:12 PM
Maybe I'm thinking too hard about this, but what's the point of saying "he/him/his". Isn't it enough to just say my pronoun is 'he'? and then the rest of the declination is regular? Or do people have other alternatives? "Nominally I'm a 'he', accusatively I'm 'her', but possessively I'm torn between 'its' and 'themselfs'"
Also, get off my lawn.
он/его/ему/его/им/нем - that's how it would look in Russian for he
on - he
ego - him
yemu - to him
ego - him
im - by him
nyom - about him
9:10 PM
@CowperKettle он не говорит по-русски
9:54 PM
@Mitch I'm sure many people around the world have surnames like eta, mu, nu.
10:06 PM
@Mitch it's probably to match with the neo-pronouns, which probably do need to be spelt out
10:34 PM
[ SmokeDetector | MS ] Few unique characters in body, no whitespace in title, potentially bad keyword in body, potentially bad keyword in title, repeating characters in body, +1 more (297): LLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL‭ by LLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL‭ on english.SE
10:54 PM
@Mitch rock/lizard/paper/spock/scissors
Finnish nominals, which include pronouns, adjectives, and numerals, are declined in a large number of grammatical cases, whose uses and meanings are detailed here. See also Finnish grammar. Many meanings expressed by case markings in Finnish correspond to phrases or expressions containing prepositions in most Indo-European languages. Because so much information is coded in Finnish through its cases, the use of adpositions (postpositions in this case) is more limited than in English, for instance. == List of Finnish cases == Note regarding the examples: Finnish has no grammatical gender nor definite...
You should go hang out with the Finns. Maybe more of their fifteen cases might rub off on you.
11:56 PM
@Cerberus Yeah, but they don't all work at WHO. And the default language at WHO is Anglo-European or Anglo-European-Deferential (China Korea Japan).

« first day (4044 days earlier)      last day (51 days later) »