Archives For: Updates

Dudes On Diets, Ctd

Feb 5 2015 @ 4:52pm

A reader brings a personal touch to this topic:

This subject is near-and-dear to my heart. I was a college athlete who never had to even think about what I ate to maintain low bodyfat. Then my workouts dropped to, say, 20% of what I had been doing when I stopped playing college bball and started working a full-time job. Typical story, I guess. The pounds crept on slowly, 5-10 a year, until, at 29, I was 50 pounds overweight. The weight came slowly but the realization came suddenly. I remember the first time I went to the beach and felt hesitation about taking my shirt off. Within a month, I was cringing every time I looked at myself shirtless in the mirror. I wasn’t obese, but I was fat, and I just didn’t like it, at all.

So I started doing actual research into what makes people fat, and it turns out, it’s not actually lack of exercise.

Read On

The Promise Of Psilocybin

Feb 5 2015 @ 10:48am

Michael Pollan’s New Yorker piece on the medical benefits of psychedelics is well worth a read:

3567431472_f8414a7ea1_oAs I chatted with Tony Bossis and Stephen Ross in the treatment room at N.Y.U., their excitement about the results was evident. According to Ross, cancer patients receiving just a single dose of psilocybin experienced immediate and dramatic reductions in anxiety and depression, improvements that were sustained for at least six months. The data are still being analyzed and have not yet been submitted to a journal for peer review, but the researchers expect to publish later this year.

“I thought the first ten or twenty people were plants—that they must be faking it,” Ross told me. “They were saying things like ‘I understand love is the most powerful force on the planet,’ or ‘I had an encounter with my cancer, this black cloud of smoke.’ People who had been palpably scared of death—they lost their fear. The fact that a drug given once can have such an effect for so long is an unprecedented finding. We have never had anything like it in the psychiatric field.”

Kleiman calls Pollan’s article “as good an introduction to the field as one could ask for”:

Read On

The Generation Gap On MGM

Feb 4 2015 @ 6:39pm

It’s significant:


You know we couldn’t end the blog without at least one more post defending foreskin. Previous Dish on male genital mutilation here. Update from a reader:

Since it’s my last chance, I just wanted to thank you for your posts on circumcision (and all the others over the years). I hadn’t thought to question the practice, and as a secular Jew, always just assumed any sons I had would be circumcised. But my son is due any day now, and it only took a 30-second conversation with my (circumcised) husband to decide not to do it.

Another reader:

“You know we couldn’t end the blog without at least one more post defending foreskin.”

Yes, you wouldn’t want to cut it off short, now would you? :)

The Way Americans Die

Feb 4 2015 @ 3:45pm

It’s getting worse:

The number of Americans experiencing pain in the last year of life actually increased by nearly 12 percent between 1998 and 2010, according to a study released Monday in the Annals of Internal Medicine. In addition, depression in the last year of life increased by more than 26 percent. That’s the case even though guidelines and quality measures for end-of-life care were developed, the number of palliative care programs rose and hospice use doubled between 2000 and 2009.

Jason Millman looks at why this is:

[Report author Joanne Lynn] sees two major possible explanations for her conclusion.

Read On

Busted With An Eggcorn, Ctd

Feb 3 2015 @ 3:59pm

IMG_20150131_221344 (1)

For the seemingly never-ending thread, a reader sends the above hathetic spelling for colitas – Mexican slang for marijuana buds:

I happen to be karaoking tonight in Korea Town for a friend’s birthday and we happened on what I think is a brilliant new subgenre: the karaoke eggcorn! Of course, we couldn’t let that go without thinking of Andrew and the rest of you at The Dish. “Warm smell of colitis?!!!”. I’m pretty sure that’s not what Don Henley and the rest of the Eagles were thinking when they wrote “Hotel California”.

Anyway, it made us double over with laughter and we hope it does the same for you guys. See? Where else would I be able to send these great gems that make you and my fellow Dishheads smile? #KeeptheDishgoing

Update from a reader, who sees that mondegreen differently:

For the record, my brother’s eggcorn for Hotel California was:

On a dark desert highway
Cool wind in my hair
Warm smell of coitus
Rising up through the air

I lost a couple of hours of sleep because I couldn’t stop laughing at this, particularly the visual it provoked for me of dark California roadways lined with people having intercourse.

Another reader points to this supercut on YouTube:

Read On

Clearly A Cult

Feb 2 2015 @ 11:00am

Logan Hill reviews Alex Gibney’s latest film, Going Clear, which got a standing ovation at Sundance last week:

Gibney (Taxi to the Dark Side, The Armstrong Lie) powerfully adapts many of the most devastating accusations from Pulitzer Prize winner Lawrence Wright’s book, Going Clear: Scientology, Hollywood, and the Prison of Belief. First-hand sources, including Best Picture winner Paul Haggis, make emotional witnesses on the screen, dramatically offering their accounts of alleged physical abuse at the hands of Scientology leaders, including church head David Miscavige himself. The film draws a stark contrast between the group’s billion-dollar real-estate investments and the sub-minimum-wage pay most Scientology workers receive, which the film says averages about 40 cents per hour. There are awful stories of families torn apart and children separated from parents, a no-holds-barred critique of L. Ron Hubbard’s self-fictionalized biography (including allegations that Hubbard beat his wife, and comical mockery of the group’s belief in the “galactic overlord” Xenu).

Kate Erbland found the film “deeply unsettling”:

Miscavige comes across as an insane megalomaniac, but Gibney also fixes his gaze on a more meaningful target: Tom Cruise.

Read On

Busted With An Eggcorn, Ctd

Feb 2 2015 @ 7:35am


The Dish thread that keeps on giving:

As a tyke in the 1940s, I often heard grownups talking about a very bad foreign man named – unless my ears deceived me – Hair Hitler. I had seen newsreel footage of this fidgety fellow with his unruly mop flopping about, so it never occurred to me to question why he was called “Hair.” When I grew a bit older and saw him referred to in print as “Herr Hitler,” I was in no way made wiser. “Herr,” I assumed, was how the Germans spelled “hair.”

Another reader:

We live in Texas and my husband is a diehard University of Texas grad, both undergrad and law school. So when our son was about three, he came into the living room during a UT football game. My husband flashed him the hook-em horns sign and told him what it meant. The kid started saying “honk em horns”. We laughed so hard and thought, well, it makes sense.

Another notes regarding our previous batch:

“Undertoad” is an eggcorn from John Irving’s The World According to Garp. I wonder if your reader traded it for their own memory or if they came to it on their own?

Full passage from Garp at the bottom of the post. Several more eggcorns from readers are below:

Read On

A Short Story For Saturday

Jan 31 2015 @ 3:22pm

Given this week’s weather, Tobias Wolff’s “Hunters in the Snow” seemed like a timely selection – though of course the story isn’t really about snow. Here’s how it begins:

Tub had been waiting for an hour in the falling snow. He paced the sidewalk to keep warm and stuck his head out over the curb whenever he saw lights approaching. One driver stopped for him but before Tub could wave the man on he saw the rifle on Tub’s back and hit the gas. The tires spun on the ice. The fall of snow thickened. Tub stood below the overhang of a building. Across the road the clouds whitened just above the rooftops, and the street lights went out. He shifted the rifle strap to his other shoulder. The whiteness seeped up the sky.

A truck slid around the corner, horn blaring, rear end sashaying. Tub moved to the sidewalk and held up his hand. The truck jumped the curb and kept coming, half on the street and half on the sidewalk. It wasn’t slowing down at all. Tub stood for a moment, still holding up his hand, then jumped back. His rifle slipped off his shoulder and clattered on the ice, a sandwich fell out of his pocket. He ran for the steps of the building. Another sandwich and a package of cookies tumbled onto the new snow. He made the steps and looked back.

Read the rest here. More of Wolff’s short fiction can be found in Our Story Begins: New and Selected Stories. Peruse previous SSFSs here. Update from a reader:

I see a none-too-subtle South Park reference in today’s short story. I mean, it’s The Dish and one of the main guys is Kenny. Of course he’s fucked.

The Hunker Mindset, Ctd

Jan 28 2015 @ 9:09am


A lot of readers can relate to this state of mind:

​My daughter, who is a graduate student in England, says that the rush to buy bread, milk, and eggs before a storm is referred to there as “the French toast panic”.

Another suggests a different meal:

On one level, I can see this as a reasonable approach; with those three staples, you can make a reasonable meal of toast and omelet, providing you have power or a working cooking surface (like a propane grill). You can even keep them fresh in a power outage by simply putting them out in the snow by your door.

I think the urge to get these particular supplies is strongest in a certain age group: those who grew up in the Depression through the early 1950s, when such commodities were delivered daily to your door … and a major storm could halt deliveries for a few days.

A few more readers sound off:

It’s not about hunkering down. It’s about milk, bread, and eggs being items that have to be bought frequently.

Read On

The Party Of No And Dunno

Jan 27 2015 @ 12:28pm

A reader writes:

I hope a lot of voters were watching CBS on Sunday night when 60 Minutes interviewed Boehner and McConnell to talk about their plans now that the GOP controls the House and Senate. Both men acknowledged that the economy has been recovering and that the recovery has been picking up steam. They also acknowledged that the recovery has mostly only benefited the top income-earners while leaving the majority of Americans stuck in neutral. Boehner and McConnell want to “do something” to address income inequality and make sure those on the bottom of the economy have the opportunity to move up. They basically accused Obama of only helping the top 1% (which seems a complete reversal of the stories we’ve been hearing from them the last six years, but I digress).

This all sounds good enough to me, since for so long, it seemed the GOP was unwilling to even acknowledge there was an issue with inequality. If they want to blame Obama, I don’t really care so long as they are willing to present solutions.

So, the interviewer then asked if they would support raising taxes on top income earners. Answer:

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