Open thread

Since I am pretty much unavailable now and for the foreseeable future, and since this has traditionally been a place for people to reconnect when various sites go down, or they are de-platformed somewhere, for now I am leaving this thread open for communications by trolls, real people, and whatevers.

I might write one or two posts more, as the spirit moves, but probably not. I will try to monitor email for a short time, in case anyone has problems with access. (It is currently set up to pass users who have already had a comment approved.)

I will try to stop by later and remove the creeps, death threats etc.

Cheers, and carry on.


Tramp tourism is absolute the future

Don’t forget to tell your readers how happy I am without a complete madhouse called wikipedia in my life anymore.
Because wikipedia is like a onion. Every time you peel a layer you find a new one what makes you cry and makes you feel deep, deep sad.  – Graaf Statler

A few days ago Graaf tried to post a comment here as “De Kolonel”, and as usual, my Evil Twin deleted the comment.

So Graaf wrote to me and said

I am eating now high cholesterol Belgium food, am living like a tramp next to the railway and are cooking my food with a wood fire.hi choloesterol belgium food 

That is the life for me! And I am very good with cooking over a campfire.

I told Graaf to go forget Wikipedia, it is not good for anyone, and do something that makes you happy.

So Graaf told me about his business plan and gave me permission to post his  emails on genderdesk blog.

Charleroi Marchienne-au-Pont and tramp tourism is absolute the future, we are already planning courses living like a tramp.

So what exactly does that look like?  This should be it right here:
That is very nice, the canal and the bike path. This time of year will be chilly but not cold, and maybe there will still be some fall color.  It is good campfire weather.
Here is the weather, translated to Fahrenheit and Celcius.

I don’t know if you sometimes follow De Kolonel his blog but he absolute stands for healthy food in our course survival as a tramp under a Belgium bridge. That sandwich was a exception and cheap.

We expect a lot of students in the near future, so our business plan is professional. Collect wood when it is dry. How to become friends with a Romanian copper thief. De Kolonel got nice fish conserves from him. How to fix a free meal with starling scream. Dit you know De Kolonel last year was enen interviewed on Belgium TV? He had told there he was the champion starling screamer of Belgium.


Not sure what that is about.

  • “Central Park in New York City is where a group of Shakespeare enthusiasts released approximately 100 European starlings in the early 1890’s.  All the European starlings in North America descended from those original 100 birds. Today, more than 200 million European starlings range from Alaska to Mexico.”
  • Starlings are great vocal mimics: individuals can learn the calls of up to 20 different species.
  • Birdist Rule #72: It’s Okay to Hate Starlings.  Audubon.

Graaf also has some advice about Wikipedia.

Wikipedia is a nice, fine gift of the devil, the complete bullshit money and wiki honour will make no one happy at the end, Madam. I thank the lord I am not trapped in that snake pit. 

It is wikifaust, it promise you gouden bergen, and at the end it takes you anything! Wikipedia seems innocent but it can destroy lives just like drugs and alcohol can.

“Wikifaust”, great neologism.

After an attempt to take his own life, Faust calls on the devil for powers with which to indulge all the pleasure and knowledge of the world.   The Devil’s representative, Mephistopheles, appears, and makes a bargain to serve Faust, but at the end of the term, the Devil will claim Faust’s soul, and Faust will be eternally enslaved. In the early tales, Faust is irrevocably corrupted and believes his sins cannot be forgiven; when the term ends, the Devil carries him off to Hell.  In Goethe’s rendition, Faust is saved by his constant striving.

If you stop and think about it, there is a lot of wisdom wrapped up in that.

So maybe it’s time to take to the open road.

AFOOT and light-hearted, I take to the open road,
Healthy, free, the world before me,
The long brown path before me, leading wherever I choose.

Henceforth I ask not good-fortune—I myself am good fortune;
Henceforth I whimper no more, postpone no more, need nothing,     5
Strong and content, I travel the open road….

Allons! whoever you are, come travel with me!    115
Traveling with me, you find what never tires.

Don’t forget the s’mores.

Instructies voor s’mores (in Dutch)

Ingrediënten: Je hebt grahamcrackers, grote marshmallows, chocoladerepen, een stok om de marshmallows te roosteren nodig, en natuurlijk een kampvuur.


1) Neem een grote grahamcracker en breek deze in twee. Hiermee maakt u de boven- en onderkant van de sandwich.

2) Pak de reep uit en leg een stuk chocolade op een van de grahamcrackers.

3) Rooster je marshmallow en draai hem een of twee keer om. Je wilt de marshmallow aan de binnenkant smelten en bruin aan de buitenkant. Laat het niet in brand vliegen!

4) Leg de geroosterde marshmallow op de chocolade. Het chololaat smelt een beetje. Gebruik de bovenste grahamcracker om de marshmallow op het broodje te trekken. Plaats dan de tweede grahamancracker erop.

5) Eet. Neem dan wat meer “some more” s’mores.

Since we have been doing bassa nova, how about starting our walkabout with a little Antonio Carlos Jobim, the one with the giraffe on the cover…

Saints for survivors of child abuse

To all those whose childhoods were marred by violence, abuse, neglect, and pain.

There has been some backchanneling lately about child abuse, and while I do not wish to shrink from tikkun olam, the moral obligation to remove harm from the world, I also find myself in need of some saints, as a sort of palate cleanser.

Here are a few, specifically associated with child abuse and sexual abuse.

  • Maria Goretti (1890 – 1902) An 11-year-old girl who died as the result of an attempted sexual assault.  Her attacker later repented after visions of being burned by lilies.  She is patron saint of both attackers and those who fall prey to sexual predators.

“St Maria Goretti was mortally wounded with 14 stab wounds. The majority of victims of paedophilia, however, are lacerated within. They are condemned to a slow death – a long haemorrhaging of the spirit – by the interior disfigurement caused by the abuse.

“The victim is disfigured in his/her own eyes. Others might look and see a beautiful, gifted person; but the person who is abused views him/herself with intense and often violent self-loathing. The spirit weeps and the soul bleeds. This can go on for many, many years.

“St Maria fought back against her attacker. He demanded her complicity and she refused….

Lies of the abuser
“Many abused children did not have the strength, or the ability, to resist an abuser. That is no reflection on them whatsoever; but the important thing to remember is that now that they are older and stronger, they can fight back against the abuse. They can close their ears to the terrible lies that the abuser told them about themselves.”

But all of this seems quite medieval, especially when we are talking about people who are using Wikipedia to work out their personal traumas, and sometimes disrupting other peoples’ work flows in the process. Somehow it doesn’t seem quite strong enough.

How about an Amazing Grace, that is both strong and gentle enough to  overcome anything.

The song was composed by a former slave trader, John Newton, who would have fit right in on Commons.  According to Wikipedia,

“In a culture where sailors habitually swore, Newton was admonished several times for not only using the worst words the captain had ever heard, but creating new ones to exceed the limits of verbal debauchery.”

But Newton turned his life around.  He even tried to become a priest in the Church of England, but was turned down for something even worse than slaving and swearing:

“…his leanings toward evangelism and tendency to socialise with Methodists.

But Newton persisted, and was eventually not only ordained, but married the woman of his dreams. And of course he also wrote Amazing Grace, which “became a popular song used by Baptist and Methodist preachers”. What goes around, comes around.

Here it is sung by Judy Collins. And there is another version by her, performed on the steps of the nation’s capitol in 1993, with the Boys’ Choir Of Harlem.

But what about the doodz, my loyal readers may ask, because by now they know that it’s not just a rhetorical question here, and that we do indeed say stuff about the dudes, sometimes even nice stuff. And boys do get assaulted; and sometimes in a sort of Stockholm syndrome, they may even develop a “betrayal bond” or psychological alliance with the abuser, and continue the cycle of abuse.

So I have scoured the internets and listened to untold numbers of unacceptable renditions of Amazing Grace, to bring you only the best.  And I believe I have found it.  This is UK musician Terry Miles playing a boogie woogie version on a piano in a London train station.

The penis privilege of Evergreenfir

If you call a tail a leg, how many legs does a dog have?

The Evergreenfir RfA is about to wrap up, and I have to say I am surprised at the comments over at Wikipediocracy, especially after all the nasty things they have had to say about Fae.

Like this Evergreenfir person is all uppity or something.

Doesn’t know her(?) place.

Et tu, Carrite?

Dudes, check the userboxen.

Ain’t nobody use this who does not have a penis.

Evergreenfir knows exactly what male privilege is, and knows how to use it. But you won’t hear it on Wikipediocracy, because they’ve got a couple of dudes who are otherwise very smart and interesting, but like to impersonate women. And that’s what they’re into over there – check the back room for the avatars with the anime girly faces and little girls in French maid costumes – those are guys trying to flounce around and pretend to be women so they can hook up with other guys.  Ladyboys, not real ladies, like moi. And ladyboys still get all the privilege associated with having a penis, because, well, they have a penis.

So why is Manchester apologist Ritchie333 trying to fake everyone out by pretending this is an ordinary woman?  And Sam Walton, the WMF employee, was also a co-nominator, but with his volunteer account.  The third one I don’t know.  Are they all part of Fae’s secret Telegram cabal?

And what is the agenda?  Fae’s agenda was a pronoun ban fad,  and he is now topic banned from gender as a result.  But what is this on Evergreenfir’s user page?

Yep. It’s a warning template for pronouns, with some links back to the Manual of Style.  Looks like some grammar bans are coming down the pike, but not from the grammar geeks, it’s from the genderqueer bullies. Whoever would have guessed the MOS would be abused like this.

Fae may have dropped the baton, but it looks like Evergreenfir is about to pick it up.

But what does Evergreenfir actually stand for…what principles?  And what regrets from the Eric Corbet days.  After all, the nomination is coming from the Eric Corbett cabal–they are the ones who nominate everyone these days.

Yes, regrets: the Evergreen one has had a few.

First of all, when you show respect to women, it causes “hard feeling”. In the future, Evergreenfir will take threats to women less personally, “a lot less personally”. Of course he will — he doesn’t have any “skin in the game”, he has a penis.

Second, as an admin, Evergreenfir will only act in “the most blatant of cases”: the use of slurs.  And when I say “slurs”, I mean slurs against anyone with a penis. The essay in this case is called WP:Zero tolerance, which means “an immediate block without warning”.  Just like the good old days on Commons, when the Dutch admins indeffed anyone they didn’t like, without so much as a word on the talk page. These “zero tolerance” activities include terrorism, child pornography (pornography of women is not a problem apparently), socking (“duck test” anyone?), slurs and epithets (based entirely on an administrators’ “requisite judgement”, not on a community standard agreed in advance), aaaaand, (wait for it) “insult or degrade a person or group on the basis of their ….gender preference.

Yep.  Wrong adverb and it’s a permanent ban, enacted by one admin.

And I don’t suppose that “cis” is going to turn out to be one of those actionable insults, eh?

Plus ça change.

The departure of Valerie D’Costa: Can Trust & Safety protect you?

Nine months after joining the WMF, Chief of Community Engagement Valerie D’Costa has quietly slipped out the back door.

Her global account was locked with the comment “no longer employed at wmf” on Nov. 8, when much of the U.S. was busy paying attention to elections.

Here she is in April 2019, out in the field, actually talking to volunteers at local events.

D’Costa reported directly to the legendary and irreplaceable Maggie Dennis, aka user:moonriddengirl, who disappeared six months ago, after going on sick leave. She hasn’t made an edit since April.

So who can protect us?

Here is the chart again from “The importance of not being harassed“, slightly modified to show the most recent changes:

We know the “trust and safety” group is massively underqualified.  Not only that, but when they have tried to protect people in the past (*cough* Framgate), the board of trustees has just pulled the rug out from under them.

Harassment is now being handled by arbcom.  And as someone recently said, “Anyone proposing to send anything to Arbcom right now must be drunk.” The inmates have taken over the asylum.

Who would want to be a manager under those circumstances. No wonder they have all gone AWOL.

So what is going on with “trust and safety”? They have lost their alliance with line management, as well as the board.  At this point they have two choices for career survival.  They could throw their weight to the affiliates – their traditional allies – and hope the “strategy process” gives them some influence, although it is being said that the new Chief of Staff is trying to squelch that.  Or they can throw the affiliates under the bus and make an alliance with the Dark Side. The signs are that this is exactly what they are now doing.

So no, “trust and safety” cannot be trusted.  And they will not protect you.