Jesurgislac’s Journal

June 1, 2009

On saying sorry

It was a lovely sunny day. I was wearing sandals. So was the nice lady right behind me as we both browsed along the bookstall. Unfortunately, I’m a hundred kilos of muscle and fat (“I’m big-boned!” – ed) and I was wearing solid sandals of the kind you go for long walks in hot weather, while she was wearing light sandals of the kind you wear between car and beach.

I noticed a new Who novel in the box below the stall, and, not realising she was there, I took a quick step backwards to kneel down for it – and felt my heel come down quite heavily on someone’s toes, as someone behind me let out a loud gasp of pain.

It occurred to me later that it was an interesting game to play: How would various prominent bloggers have reacted to this situation? Someone’s hurt: they were responsible: they didn’t do it on purpose.

Kathryn Cramer would have stomped on the woman’s other foot, and snarled at her for not being nicer about it.

Will Shetterley would have apologized, stomped on the same foot again, and demanded to know why she wasn’t more appreciative of his apology.

The Nielsen Haydens would have …well, considered as a team, Patrick would have run away at top speed to avoid having to say he was sorry, and Teresa would have spent fifteen minutes upbraiding the woman for being so nasty to poor Patrick, outraging his delicate ears with her noise. She would then have banned the woman from the bookstall, and demanded an apology from everyone who sympathised with her.

BitchPhD would have first of all explained to the woman that she wasn’t hurt, then claimed she was probably just hanging around the bookstall on purpose to get her foot trodden on, then explained at length that it wasn’t that bad a stomp and she hadn’t meant to hurt the woman’s foot and she really didn’t think she had, but she was sorry now she’d trodden on it since it was causing her so much trouble.

(Update: “Anonymous Coward”, er, yes. Very funny comment, but I’m the only one who will ever read it, because WordPress justly sent your sockpuppeted comment to the spam queue and I figure I kinda agree, regardless of what I think of the person you were attacking. If you’re going to launch a personal attack on someone, do it from your usual Internet pseud. )
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February 2, 2009

Banned From Argo

Yes: banned again. This time, most unusually, not for arguing too hard that same-sex marriage is a civil right, or that safe legal abortion is an essential choice. I got drawn into a conversation on Livejournal about race, cultural appropriation, and racism, Patrick Nielsen Hayden jumped in with both feet and Teresa Nielsen Hayden jumped after him with a flamethrower.

There’s a quick recap here. More information here. A timeline of events here.

And a rather brilliant post called Laurels Wither, or, It Just Doesn’t Work That Way by Bellatrys.

(Teresa’s response to my posting these links in a comment at her journal: “Jesurgislac, my only remaining point of curiosity about you is why I didn’t ban you earlier.”

I’m impressed: I normally only get banned for making comments with information the owner of the blog/journal does not wish people to read, at blogs which either (a) are rigidly anti-choice or (b) rigidly against same-sex couples having the right to marriage.)


If the following makes no sense to you, don’t worry about it; I fitted in as many injokes as I could. Potentially NSFW due to one use of a word that, while technically no more obscene than “dick”, is usually regarded as far more offensive.

Banned From TNH

When we pulled into TNH to talk of race and such
The fans set out investigating every little touch
We had high expectations of her hospitality
But found too late she isn’t geared for nithlings such as we
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September 24, 2008

Paying attention: why Florida 2000 still matters

In November 2000, the Presidential election had come down to the 25 electoral votes in Florida. Gore had won the popular vote, and, by exit polls proven reliable in every country in the world, he’d won Florida.

By December 2000, the courts – not the voters – had decided to hand Florida’s electoral votes to Bush.

Many Americans are under the strong (yet incorrect) impression that Bush “won Florida”. They are incorrect about this – but hardly to be blamed: no US news services ever clearly and unambiguously reported, at any time after the courts had awarded the White House to Bush, that – if all the votes had been counted, which they never were officially – a majority of Florida’s voters had voted for Gore. (This does not count the voters who were intimidated away from the polls nor the voters who were illegally removed from the electoral rolls prior to the election, which I was reading about in the UK news and hearing about on the BBC in November 2000 – along with the news that an attempted recount had been halted by Republican party operatives from another state who showed up to violently protest the recount.)

If all the votes had been counted, according to Florida electoral law in November 2000 – count the ballot if the voter’s intent is clear – Gore had won. (There’s an interesting interview in Research in Review that makes the point that Gore won by tens of thousands, not by a close count of a few hundred, with the author of The Battle for Florida: An Annotated Compendium of Materials from the 2000 Presidential Election.)
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