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Wobbegong the Ovovore


Wobbegong

Inspired by WhiteGhost and because I just wanted to have a poll,  

6 members have voted

  1. 1. What should I read next?

    • "The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America" by Erik Larson (heavily researced historical fiction about the 1893 World's Fair and the serial killer who hunted there)
      5
    • "18 Tiny Deaths: The Untold Story of Frances Glessner Lee and the Invention of Modern Forensics" by Bruce Goldfarb (a biography; exactly what it says on the tin)
      0
    • "Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers" by Mary Roach (an exploration of the science and uses of cadavers through history, including some notable case studies)
      1


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I didn't eat any eggs today but I ate some cheesecake and it was pretty freaking delicious. Much heavier than the cheesecake I've had in Japan (probably a result of neglecting a block of cream cheese while keeping the egg count the same, whoops) but also so much more like the cheesecakes I grew up with. And the crust came out really well! Hooray, hooray!

21 hours ago, Waanie said:

I always explicitly calculate the ratio between my tin and a standard tin, since those quadratic factors are sneakily non-intuitive ;).

I left out that extra block of cheese by miscalculating 4 x 8 (four blocks of eight oz) when trying to figure out what that would be in grams... I went with 24oz because I'm an idiot and then rounded down to 600g because that was what I had on hand. So probably explicitly calculating would've helped, since I'd've had a calculator out to handle pi and squaring and could let it cover my sorry arithmetic skills. 😓 Whatever, it's still delicious.

 

I delivered the gift cheesecake to its intended recipient this morning and she practically exploded from happiness. She lives alone and hasn't been able to meet up with her friends or family due to the virus, so I think she might not be expecting many presents this year. In fact, she may not be planning to celebrate at all. I made sure to remind all of the students that her birthday is in two days so they should wish her well too. Hopefully.

 

If it seems like I'm making a really big deal out of a random coworker's birthday, it's because I am. I'm just worried about her because she's lost a ton of weight (she was small to start with and has now crossed over into looking fragile) since moving out on her own, and she regularly works from 6am to 10pm just to stay on top of all her duties. Since I only see her once a week there's not much I can do to help her, but at least if it's her birthday I can give her a cheesecake and expect her to take in some calories. (By the way, this is not the same teacher as the one I'm working on UK info with. That one doesn't like cheesecake.)

 

Speaking of relationships with coworkers, yesterday I worked with that elementary school teacher who the sixth graders were boycotting previously, and this week I tried just casually taking over a bunch of stuff without asking. We still went with her lesson plan, but I ran as much of it as I could myself, so the kids would be engaging with me instead of her. It actually worked really well! She even thanked me at the end of the day. These classes all happened to be a bit easier to do that with, though, because they were presentations. Usually we're much more textbook heavy, and I doubt I'd be able to make much difference there. But next week I won't see her because we have the day off, so I don't have to worry about it until the week after that! Yaaaay

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6 hours ago, Wobbegong said:

So probably explicitly calculating would've helped, since I'd've had a calculator out to handle pi and squaring and could let it cover my sorry arithmetic skills. 😓 Whatever, it's still delicious.

Omnom cheesecake :D. Fun fact: you don't need pi to calculate the ratio between two round pans, since pi cancels out on both sides.

 

I think it's very thoughtful of you to gift your coworker with something tasty and typically American :).

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Yum, cheesecake. 

 

1 hour ago, Waanie said:

I think it's very thoughtful of you to gift your coworker with something tasty and typically American :).

 

Agreed. :) 

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Replies later.

 

I've been taking my iron every day but I'm back to feeling exhausted all the time, and now I'm actually getting worried. It might just be stress -- I got the "we need to talk" text from my supervisor (which I've been assured year after year doesn't mean the same thing in Japanese as it does in English, but freaks me out every time anyway) which I assume means it's time to discuss re-upping my contract again. I took Wednesday and Thursday afternoons off to try to get ahead on my course work this week after being totally laid low by those translations, and ended up just barely getting stuff turned in on time Wednesday night and spending all of Thursday afternoon relaxing and recharging. I played some BOTW and went to bed at 8 because I was so tired.

 

I'm writing this post as I finish breakfast and run out the door; Friday is a busy commute day. Luckily I have a nice four day weekend with Monday and Tuesday being national holidays, but I wanted to spend it socializing online, not buried in catch-up work and naps! And to top it all off, I'm way behind on my egg-eating quotas. Ugh.

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19 minutes ago, Wobbegong said:

Jumping back into my UK discussion did y'all hear Barbados is stepping out of the Commonwealth? Apparently it's the first country to do so in 30 years.

 

Wow. 

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58 minutes ago, Wobbegong said:

Jumping back into my UK discussion did y'all hear Barbados is stepping out of the Commonwealth? Apparently it's the first country to do so in 30 years.

 

Yeah there have been rumbles of this for years from a lot of the Caribbean countries, and more power to them for further casting off the shackles of colonialism. More will follow suit, especially when the queen dies. 

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It's the hyperman set

Profile picture credit : NF's resident super artist - NinjaKitten

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On 9/17/2020 at 3:58 PM, Wobbegong said:

Replies later.

 

I've been taking my iron every day but I'm back to feeling exhausted all the time, and now I'm actually getting worried. It might just be stress -- I got the "we need to talk" text from my supervisor (which I've been assured year after year doesn't mean the same thing in Japanese as it does in English, but freaks me out every time anyway) which I assume means it's time to discuss re-upping my contract again. I took Wednesday and Thursday afternoons off to try to get ahead on my course work this week after being totally laid low by those translations, and ended up just barely getting stuff turned in on time Wednesday night and spending all of Thursday afternoon relaxing and recharging. I played some BOTW and went to bed at 8 because I was so tired.

 

I'm writing this post as I finish breakfast and run out the door; Friday is a busy commute day. Luckily I have a nice four day weekend with Monday and Tuesday being national holidays, but I wanted to spend it socializing online, not buried in catch-up work and naps! And to top it all off, I'm way behind on my egg-eating quotas. Ugh.

Yeah, I would get nervous hearing the "We need to talk" text. 

 

For feeling exhausted, I wonder if there might be something diet related maybe? I know this has happened to me when I got back into Keto, or even when I did whole 30. Maybe your body needs to just adjust to the new amount of iron it is getting now? Who knows, maybe it's just a phase and will pass soon. :)

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On 9/18/2020 at 12:58 AM, Wobbegong said:

I got the "we need to talk" text from my supervisor (which I've been assured year after year doesn't mean the same thing in Japanese as it does in English, but freaks me out every time anyway)

Does this typically mean "something is wrong (with your performance), and I don't want to discuss it over text"? The subtleties of the difference between "need to", "have to", "must" and "should" are still hard for me regarding the tone of a message (it all translates to the same word in Dutch), and I imagine your supervisor also might have problems with this tone-thingy. What would have been more appropriate here if you want to limit the number of words? Would something like "We must meet about your contract" or "When are you available for a meeting?" be more correct?

 

Anyway, good job on taking the iron every day, and I hope you'll feel more energetic again soon!

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On 9/16/2020 at 1:28 AM, Waanie said:

Omnom cheesecake :D. Fun fact: you don't need pi to calculate the ratio between two round pans, since pi cancels out on both sides.

 

I think it's very thoughtful of you to gift your coworker with something tasty and typically American :).

I would've realized that about pi if I had taken even a few seconds to think about how to go about converting (obviously a ratio is the answer) but I only got as far as "the area of a circle is pi*r^2" lol.

Is cheesecake American? New York cheesecake is certainly American, but surely the concept of cheesecake is much older. Surely.

 

On 9/16/2020 at 3:07 AM, Jupiter said:

Yum, cheesecake.

It was delicious and completely ruined my egg eating and also fasting protocols, but whatever, cheesecake! It's not like I eat it regularly.

 

On 9/16/2020 at 4:26 AM, Tateman said:

Sounds like an excellent cheesecake to me :) It's also very nice that you are a good friend. Hopefully, they have a great birthday.

Thanks! Since Tuesday was a holiday I won't see her again until next week, but she texted me that the cheesecake was good, so hopefully she had a nice time.

 

On 9/18/2020 at 8:10 AM, Countess D'If said:

Maybe you can get frontload the work to the first couple of days and take an actual break and socialize on Tuesday?

That would've been smart, and I did try, but in the end I just kind of... slouched along as usual. I'm still on top of things, but I also still haven't gotten ahead with anything.

 

On 9/18/2020 at 2:10 PM, deftona said:

Yeah there have been rumbles of this for years from a lot of the Caribbean countries, and more power to them for further casting off the shackles of colonialism. More will follow suit, especially when the queen dies. 

Forgive my ignorance, but why wait for the queen? Is there some particularly strong loyalty there?

 

On 9/19/2020 at 8:55 AM, Tateman said:

For feeling exhausted, I wonder if there might be something diet related maybe? I know this has happened to me when I got back into Keto, or even when I did whole 30. Maybe your body needs to just adjust to the new amount of iron it is getting now? Who knows, maybe it's just a phase and will pass soon. :)

I reflected on this and have decided you're probably right. If it's not diet-related, that means I have a new mystery ailment that happened to start around the same time as classes and fasting and eating more eggs, which just seems so unlikely. Stress is definitely part of it, but super-likely dietary issues that could cause fatigue include nutrient deficiencies (I've been meaning to start taking my multi-vitamin again, but haven't quite gotten into the swing of putting it on my computer when I go to sleep to remind myself to take it in the morning), or protein deficiency (even with the eggs I know I'm not getting nearly enough). I'll try to address those and hopefully it will help.

 

3 minutes ago, Waanie said:

Does this typically mean "something is wrong (with your performance), and I don't want to discuss it over text"? The subtleties of the difference between "need to", "have to", "must" and "should" are still hard for me regarding the tone of a message (it all translates to the same word in Dutch), and I imagine your supervisor also might have problems with this tone-thingy. What would have been more appropriate here if you want to limit the number of words? Would something like "We must meet about your contract" or "When are you available for a meeting?" be more correct?

 

Anyway, good job on taking the iron every day, and I hope you'll feel more energetic again soon!

The text was actually in Japanese, and more accurately translated said, "Something I want to talk about has come up, so when you have some time, could you come by the office? Please advise me of when you will be coming in advance." It was very polite, but also very vague, which is the crux of the issue. Last year the text she sent me did say "We have to talk, please tell me when you can come to the office" and I made it very clear that her phrasing really stressed me out.

 

In American English (and perhaps also British English, but I can't speak to that), "We need to talk" means "something is very wrong. It's wrong enough that we have to discuss it in person and in private as soon as possible, and it probably means the end of our current relationship," whether that's a romantic or a work relationship. It's stupid and obnoxious that these words carry this implication, but they do, and people like me and Tate have a pretty visceral reaction to hearing them (or even seeing them written, or in my case, processing a translation). Where I come from, "We have to talk" is a variation that also requires in-person and private discussion, but means "There is a big problem but if you are willing to put in a lot of work the situation might be salvageable." "We need to talk" suggests that a decision has already been made, and the outcome is not one you will like, but you can't avoid hearing it; "We have to talk" indicates there's still room for decision making, but none of your options are going to be fun.

 

It should be noted that the drama of both of these statements hinges on the lack of context provided. If you state upfront what exactly is going to be discussed, it's FAR less stressful. "We need to talk about that rug" might mean your rug is ugly, or filthy, or you're too attached to it, and I want it out of my house/life... but we're not going to break up over it. Without context, there is the implication that whatever information being conveyed in this "talk" is going to upset you, so you aren't allowed any details until the conditions (1) in-person and (2) private have been met. Over time, the phrase has basically become shorthand for "assume the worst."

 

"We must talk" is far too stilted for an American to use in conversation. Americans typically only use "must" to extrapolate, ex: "She must take really good care of herself, to look that good at her age" or "You must be Waanie! I've heard so much about you." Again, I can't remark on British English. I think they use must when issuing invitations ("You must come to dinner!") but since most of my contact with spoken British English is through period dramas, that could be totally outdated usage. I don't know if anyone actually uses the imperative must anymore except in academic writing. We typically rely on "have to" instead; I think Brits do use must not (or probably mustn't, pronounced mussn't), but Americans use cannot/can't. "You mustn't sit there!"/"You can't sit there!" We can't use "don't have to" in those situations because "You don't have to sit there" would mean something completely different.

 

"We should talk" is way more difficult to parse because it actually gets used in a bunch of different contexts. It can mean "you just messed up and I'm gonna set you straight" or "I see some great opportunities in our future!" or "we haven't had a conversation in a while and it would be nice to catch up." Largely depends on the context. Sorry.

 

I hope that cleared things up a little... I got very wordy, so it's probably more confusing than helpful. But I'm always happy to dive into these sorts of questions, so if I can be of use, let me know.

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3 minutes ago, Wobbegong said:

Forgive my ignorance, but why wait for the queen? Is there some particularly strong loyalty there?

 

The Queen is highly respected and conducts herself in line with how a monarch should, which is more than I can say for anyone who might follow her with the exception perhaps of William. 

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It's the hyperman set

Profile picture credit : NF's resident super artist - NinjaKitten

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Thanks for the English lesson! It makes sense that it's the word "talk" without context is the problem. However,

10 minutes ago, Wobbegong said:

"Something I want to talk about has come up, so when you have some time, could you come by the office? Please advise me of when you will be coming in advance."

would not make me nervous unless there were red flags on beforehand. It's clearly not urgent, but is either private or just easier to convey in person. It could be that some paperwork is needed, or an explanation is easier to make in person, or that it's about a student, or whatever. The fact that you have to warn in advance means that it's most likely involving something with paperwork. But yeah, this is a most likely a cultural thing. I think that in your position but with a Dutch supervisor, I would ask what it is about and how long it would take, but that's so that I can plan more easily around it.

 

 

22 minutes ago, Wobbegong said:

I hope that cleared things up a little... I got very wordy, so it's probably more confusing than helpful. But I'm always happy to dive into these sorts of questions, so if I can be of use, let me know.

It did clear it up a little :). I think this kind of stuff is the difference between "fluent" and "native". The meaning that a talk will take place in the future was conveyed to me, but I wasn't aware about the negative connotation even when you put a subject in the sentence ("we need to talk about that rug"). I might have used that kind of sentence casually in the past (e.g. "hey, we need to talk about that project some time soon, when will you have time?" for a discussion about the planning and/or scope), but I'll be more careful about that now ;).

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8 hours ago, Waanie said:

would not make me nervous unless there were red flags on beforehand.

I pretty much knew exactly what it would be about but was already really nervous about my contract discussion and had kind of been waiting tensely to hear it was time to discuss. So you're right, the verbiage of the message was not so much the problem.

 

8 hours ago, Waanie said:

"hey, we need to talk about that project some time soon, when will you have time?" for a discussion about the planning and/or scope

I think this is probably fine. There's stated context (the project) AND urgency (low, "some time soon"/"when you have time"). These things mitigate the dire sentiments associated with the shorter version. If you left out either of these elements (We need to talk about that project. / We need to talk sometime soon.) the stress level begins to increase, but with both there I think the sentiments would translate pretty much directly. It's not a red flag sentence. But even with those shorter versions that only have one piece, context again plays a big part. "We need to talk about that project." might mean "hey we really are gonna be coming up on the deadline soon, let's get that ball rolling" more than "there is a big problem with the project."

 

For the record, people with native fluency also hate the connotations of "we need to talk." Sometimes it's just the case that a conversation is necessary! That's the cleanest way to express it! In practice you end up with people making all kinds of convoluted sentences or saying that and then immediately rushing in with reassurances, it can be pretty funny.

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18 hours ago, Wobbegong said:

For the record, people with native fluency also hate the connotations of "we need to talk." Sometimes it's just the case that a conversation is necessary! That's the cleanest way to express it! In practice you end up with people making all kinds of convoluted sentences or saying that and then immediately rushing in with reassurances, it can be pretty funny.

I agree. I will go out of my way to avoid it.

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