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5:00 PM
Hmm. I think the accepted answer is the correct one here: english.stackexchange.com/questions/16740/…
But it currently has fewer upvotes.
There, now it has equal upvotes. Happy? :p
@Martha :)
5:24 PM
Just come across this:
A: Using contracted forms ("don't", "let's") in a formal text

JonIt is frowned upon to use contractions in formal writing. However, these "rules" or "standards" are quickly becoming guidelines. Negations are also said to be avoided in formal writing. So, "do not" shouldn't be used at all. Of course, there are times when the negated construction doesn't have th...

Has anyone else come across the idea that negations shouldn't be used in formal writing?
It's a new one on me...
Well, in formal writing — or any writing, really — I don't know how one would advise someone not to use negation without actually using it.
Hence that is a ridiculous assertion.
^ What he said
:) "Refrain from the use of negation" I suppose...
@psmears — See, it sounds like you're avoiding it. And, therefore, silly.
Whoa, peoples.
Q: Eeeek! How does this question have 28 (and growing!) close votes without being closed?

marcogShould I use a 64Bit or 32Bit Linux for a high throughput LAMP server? has 28 close votes. Here's a screenshot from when it was on 9: All of them are for off-topic SF (this was at least true when I casted the 9th vote). How come it hasn't been closed yet?

5:30 PM
The @Martha meme is gaining traction!
Though it does remind me of some of the work I do with children
Where the advice is always "no negative instructions"
I'm wondering if the correct form of Eeeek! is four letters e or five. If only we had someone on E&U.SE who could advise us on this ... some authoritative source ...
Not for any sort of grammar or stylistic reason, but more because saying "Don't climb on the furniture" usually has the effect of giving the idea to the children that hadn't already thought of it...
Don't not climb the furniture. Reverse psychology.
5:32 PM
@Robusto Some 1940s film heroine, perhaps?
You're welcome.
@Robusto Yeah, that can't not work.
@Robusto I believe it depends on the context. But I'm not sure of the rules. Some advice is sorely needed...
@Robusto That's old news, really.
20 hours ago, by RegDwight
A: The Many Memes of Meta

drachensternMeme: Eeeek! Usage: Eeeek! {Observation of horrible, terrible, thing that has happened somewhere in the SE2.0 codebase}? Originator: Marti First Seen: 4 Mar. 2011 ~ Eeeek what happened to my envelope? (sorry guys, 10k only) Cultural Height: Probably still to be reached, given the increase of...

@RegDwight — Newness of news is relative. It was new to me, ergo it was new. None of you really exist, you are all just Turing machines attached to a chat mechanism, so none of your perceptions of time matter at all anyway.
5:36 PM
As if anybody's perception of anything matters in the great scheme of things.
There is no great scheme of things. It's a distributed system of small schemes.
@Robusto Damn, spotted.
That is your perception of the great scheme of things.
Spoken like a monoschemist.
I am a polyschemist.
We can never agree on anything.
That suits me rather well as I have to go pick up my wife.
5:39 PM
You married her and you're still trying to pick her up?
So probably no talking tonight.
That's keeping it fresh.
Or more like lots of talking, but not to Robusto.
@jgbelacqua — Wow. I wish I'd said that.
It's so good it should have been mine.
5:40 PM
@Robusto You fail.
Mar 14 at 17:14, by RegDwight
user image
@RegDwight — No, I am winning at the larger game, if you could but see it.
I'm out!
Out of good things to say?
Bye then
5:40 PM
Then why did you even enter chat in the first place?
it always comes to this in the end
You're still here, listening, I can hear you breathing.
@RegDwight likes to announce his departure somewhat before the actual event, so he can see what bad things people are saying about him.
We all do that, don't we? Easier than organizing a funeral, these days.
@Robusto The trouble with that is...
@RegDwight always reads the entire transcript anyhow. Unlike @Robusto, for whom @RegDwight then has to repeat all kinds of things.
5:43 PM
@jgbelacqua — Yeah, that's the problem I have with wakes. The best party you're ever invited to is the one everyone knows you can't attend.
@psmears — Wait a minute ... I think that cartoon has been doctored.
@Robusto ...unlike the dog
Trying to thing of a good context to use "It's palimpsestuous."
@Robusto Say it ain't so...
@RegDwight — You are so busted.
@psmears — I can't be sure without a thorough examination in Photoshop, but I suspect the worst.
You could find the original?
Using an Internets?
I think I'll always talk like this now?
5:47 PM
@Robusto The number of e's in Eeeek is variable. Ideally, it should correspond to the level of eeekiness of the problem. For example, that question about the missing red boxes on the main page of StackOverflow should, in my opinion, be prefaced by "Ek". At most.
@Martha — Thank you, Martha. It is great to have the inventor of the meme here to explain it in detail.
A curator of memes.
You can't be a curator of memes. They exist only in the wild.
Wild memes are wild.
5:50 PM
Well, "wild meme" is a redundancy. So is — before you even try to suggest it — "free-range" meme.
la même chose like that.
And if you try to copy memes you become memetic.
If you love même chose, let it go, and if it comes back to you, copy it .
Plus: what if la même chose changes?
5:52 PM
I've never liked the meme meme, actually, but I suspect that's a cliché.
It's a compression of this greedy statement of selfish children: "Me me me me me!"
"selfish children" and selfish children are redundant (when they're saying "me me me")
Q: Why do golfers yell: 'Fore"?

ArthurRexFeeling rather bogeyed, I'm looking for some fore-closure to this query - help!

T-Rex strikes again.
Ook. (Oops, meant to say "ooook.")
Hey, no copycat memes!
5:56 PM
If a thingy comes back to you, copy it badly, and release it back into the wild?
Ooook is so vastly inferior to Eeeek! it isn't even funny.
@jgbelacqua — "The young poet mimics; the mature poet plagiarizes." — T. S. Eliot
It's less recognizable as a meme. S'posed to be a sound.
Like 'fffffoooooouuuu"
(Which fails equally as well.)
@jgbelacqua — I'm staring at those letters and I don't hear a thing.
The eccentric poet hollers about pants.
And the out-of-shape hillbilly poet pants about hollers.
5:58 PM
You have to have the right props to make "fffooooouuu" speak.
@Martha: Are you even here? I'm missing my thwack.
'billy-pants rants in unshapely hloars.
She's working? I know I am.
Anything can be an answer, if you ask the wrong question.
apropos of nothing.
answer: "pesto"
question: What spice killed 1/3 of the human population during the Middle Ages?
@Robusto, I'm not your personal thwacking pet, perpetually at your beck and call. If you know you deserve a thwacking, you can very well thwack yourself. (Or - gasp horrors - not make the pun in the first place.)
@Robusto Bears?
6:02 PM
@Martha, now now, let's not be unreasonable here
He works hard for those thwackings, it would be wrong to deprive him.
And he is so very thwackable.
Was she telling him to thwack off?
That's how I read it.
I'm going to go and make tea now and pretend I didn't read that.
That's a good plan -- I think I'll do that too.
@Martha — Hey, you're the one who started the whole thwacking meme. But I see what you're doing. You give me a sample of the product so I get hooked, and then you start charging exorbitant sums for it? I guess that makes you a thwack dealer, doesn't it?
A crack thwack dealer ; she knows how to do it.
6:06 PM
@jgbelacqua — You provided the "answer: " ... I just provided the "question: " to it.
Oh, goody. Now I get a fish.
Or do you get the fish?
@jgbelacqua Sigh. (And Thwack!.)
@Martha — Watch it. She's going to start charging for those pretty soon.
Oh, wait -- I don't eat fish, I'm a humanitarian.
6:08 PM
@jgbelacqua You only eat humans?
That's called a cannibal, not a humanitarian.
So they say. Before I eat them.
Nom nom nom.
Hey don't blame Martha: she is only the instrument of the General Will.
"cannibal"! You wash your mouth out.
@Cerberus — Well, in this case she's an instrument of the Specific Won't ... as in, she won't thwack me even though I richly deserve it.
@Rob: Nicely put. I see no solution but masochism for you.
Brb groceries.
6:10 PM
Since when is masochism a solution?
Depends on the question.
Such as, how do you escape bears?
a masochism.
If you mumble, it sounds almost like 'massive chasm,' or 'bread box'.
Well, T-Rex just outed himself:
Q: Why do golfers yell: 'Fore"?

ArthurRexFeeling rather bogeyed, I'm looking for some fore-closure to this query - help!

Read his comment to my comment.
Gotta run -- ciao.
Re: cannibalism -- Y'all should be grateful. There's this lovely picture of the niece chowing down on her daddy's nose, but it's not anywhere on my work machine or in my email.
@Robusto sigh. He probably thinks he's so funny.
6:19 PM
Yeah. He won't stop, either.
I'd try becoming his Internet boyfriend, but he probably wouldn't realise he was supposed to be scared.
Q: Word for a person who doesn't think the rules apply to him

Ben CollinsI'm trying to write a letter to the editor of my local paper about their report of a man who doesn't think the rules apply to him. Is there a word for this? He's a bit of an egoist, demanding to speak at city council meetings after the public hearing portion of the meeting has been closed.

Answer: T-Rex
6:34 PM
Internet boyfriends? Where?
6:44 PM
Sorry darling, you're too late. I'm all Art's
@Cerberus: actually I was just commenting on your contribution to the Spatial/Special question.
I have already answered you ipso loco!
Though I didn't have much to say except "oh! interesting!".
That's about all there is to say, so thanks.
(Well at least I am glad you have found a decent dinosaur to have freakish kids with.)
Oh, except that HM the Q doesn't like it pronounced that way. My choir had stern instructions that it was her language and she wanted it pronounced the modern way.
@Cerberus (though bearing in mind his comment, him being a dinosaur makes it a past participle)
(Hey Jurassic Park...)
You mean Elizabeth II decided her great-etc.-grandmother's pronunciation wasn't good enough for her? Did she oppose historical pronunciation for some specific reason? It would seem silly to oppose musical practice no doubt conceived by experts in the field...?
6:57 PM
It did not amuse. I know no more.
Then again, experts do seem to contradict themselves every couple of decades, so maybe she's right.
I suppose she might be!
7:32 PM
I must be off, I'm afraid. I have friends expecting me and a few things to deliver before I get to them.
Also eating would be nice :-)
Yeah, stupid eating. Gets me every time.
Yeah. Doing it as we speak. Bye Rhodri!
8:01 PM
hi all
where is Martha's MSO enveloppe question gone? I can't find it anywhere? As it been deleted by the powers that might be?
Uh I am not sure, I haven't been following that discussion...
@Fx, yes, Evil Jeff deleted it. And locked it for good measure, or so I'm told.
@Martha so cool!
8:10 PM
So any day now I expect to arrive at MSO to see a severely diminished reputation score.
I believe you already have, haven't you?
wait, no, sorry
Nope, still 700-something.
No recalc yet.
you can ask for it :)
Right. :p
But I get to keep my badges. So there.
1 hour later…
9:26 PM
3 hours ago, by Martha
@Robusto The number of e's in Eeeek is variable. Ideally, it should correspond to the level of eeekiness of the problem. For example, that question about the missing red boxes on the main page of StackOverflow should, in my opinion, be prefaced by "Ek". At most.
In that case
If everything's totally fine, people should be able to say "k"
Or perhaps, to be totally explicit that there are no "E"s, they could put a zero in front
Like this: 0K
I am somewhat tempted to post that as an answer to this question
Q: Where did the term "OK/Okay" come from?

Daniel LeCheminantI've heard lots of varying histories of the term "OK". Is there any evidence of the true origin of the term?

Ok, I'm laughing too hard to thwack you. It's not fair.
I have defeated the thwack... my work here is done :)
10:22 PM
Hey that deserves a giant, potentially harmful thwack! I hope Martha will recuperate.
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