December 30, 2008

To all my commenters, the best commenters in the blogosphere.

Yesterday, the day I saw "The Curious Life of Benjamin Button" and wrote that post, I conked out early.

Oh, I don't know if it was from the movie or from the pizza and one glass of wine I had afterward or just from being somewhat old. Most of the people in the movie audience were old, so old, that when Cate Blanchett reassured the getting-younger Benjamin by saying that we all wear diapers in the end, and the chuckle from the audience was unnervingly warm, I had to speculate that there was a high Depends-to-butt ratio in the theater at that very moment. And who knows? Perhaps young soda-swillers wear Depends to the movies, especially to 3-hour extravaganzas like "Benjamin Button." Especially with all that water imagery:
[W]ater is often seen as a symbol for birth/re-birth, and [I] thought they used it well. Spoilers: The dad nearly throws Pitt in the water in the beginning, Pitt takes the dad to sit by the water, Tilda Swinton swims the English Channel, all of the work Pitt does on the boat and the sailing, Daisy takes up swimming after her injury, Hurricane Katrina...anything else?)
And Benjamin fighting the Nazis at sea. Or should I say Ben or Ben-yah-meen?
Here's a weird-ass quirk of mine: For years now, anywhere and everywhere I see the name "Benjamin" used in a narrative (especially a grand, old one) I substitute plain old "Ben." Amazing, how well that works and the perspective it brings.

I studied Arabic one summer during college, and there was a white guy in the program named Benjamin who insisted we all call him Ben-yah-meen. That experience, I think, has much the same effect on Benjamin perspective.
The quote in that first block is from Zachary Paul Sire in the comments. The 2 in the second block are from reader_iam and Freeman Hunt.

See? This post is a tribute to all the commenters who kept an interesting conversation going all night on that thread that I conked out after writing. In the morning, it's my habit to reach for my iPhone before so much as sitting up in bed. Supine, I check the news, mostly to assure myself that nothing terrible happened during the hours when I wasn't paying attention. (The Yellowstone caldera has not exploded, despite the recent, strange swarm of earthquakes.) Then, I read blog comments for a while. Last night's post had accumulated 73 comments. The second one was from me, right before I fell asleep. I was responding to the first comment, from Zachary Paul Sire, who wanted to know if I liked the movie, a matter I'd considered beside the point of the post. I answered:
It was okay. It would have been much better if it were tightened up... and livened up. Like many high-budget, high-aspiration movies of today, it was embalmed. Its "I have always loved you" theme was very conventional, and I never felt much real passion between the 2 lead actors. And neither of them ever said anything clever. But there were some excellent special effects in aging and youthening Pitt and Blanchett, and there were some nice moments. Where to cut? You can cut all whole old dying woman and her daughter scenes, as far as I'm concerned. Reminded me of "Titanic," bringing in an old, old woman to tell the story of her big love to her daughter.
71 comments ensued. I can't reprint them all. But I intend to frontpage much more than usual this morning.

Chuck b. said:
I always enjoy the Althousian disdain for sentimentality (or is it a midwesterner's disdain? or maybe it's just very lawyerly), although I myself enjoy many sentimental films.

Actually, I'm not very good at recognizing sentimentality when I see it. I just let myself get played.

... although I don't cry as much during commercials and sentimental television things as much as Althouse does. Actually, that's interesting. A'house report tearage not infrequently. Does that have something to do with her negative reactions toward...ineffective sentimentality?
Am I midwestern? The most midwestern thing about me is that my mother grew up in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Second is: I went to college at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. Third: I've taught at the University of Wisconsin Law School in Madison, Wisconsin since 1984 (since I was 33 years old). So: 1. My formative years were not spent in the midwest, and 2. My time in the midwest has entirely been in these 2 university towns that don't really represent the region.

As for crying and sentimentality... 1. I might cry about something sentimental the way I might sneeze in the presence of dusty black pepper. It doesn't mean I admire the cause of the reflex. Quite the opposite. 2. I am cold to some emotional manipulations and susceptible to others. I might get judgmental and resist everything, but I might indulge and enjoy the easily won emotions of sentimentality. There is some good sentimentality. "The Bill Cosby Show" always made me cry. (And I do mean "The Bill Cosby Show," not "The Cosby Show," which I never watched.) 3. There are some things I regard as real art. I keep these separate, whether they provoke crying or not. The Kubrick movie "Lolita" caused me to cry profusely, but only after it was over, when I was trying to talk about it. That meant something.

Palladian said:
["Ben Button" s]ounds like a miserable Oscar-bait remake of "Big".
"Big" was much more fun, but like "Big," it gave us a chance to see an adult woman in love with a little boy — without all that nasty guilt that comes from awareness that we are witnessing pedophilia. Unlike "Big," it gave us a chance to see an old man in love with a little girl. Ah, but he's only 7! He's her age. And when an old woman tells him he should be ashamed of himself, we sympathize with the old man. I mean the little boy. And I bet pedophiliac old men believe that at heart they too are little boys.
And Brad Pit and Cate Blanchett? Can there be two more overexposed, boring actors on the planet?
Zachary Paul Sire said:
I love Cate Blanchett (anyone seen "Notes On A Scandal"? Now that's a good movie)...but Brad Pitt has never, ever been interesting to me. I can't think of one movie he's been in that I've enjoyed. Maybe "12 Monkeys," but that's because he was a supporting character. He and Cate, like Althouse said, had absolutely no passion or believability. Lifeless. Boring.
I love Brad in "12 Monkeys." Also in "Fight Club." In fact, I have a lot of respect for Brad Pitt. He picks some artistic projects, and he doesn't just rely on his pretty face — though perhaps he uglifies himself in part for the purpose of sending the message that he is so gorgeous that even uglified he's divine. In "Ben Button," he puts on that old age makeup, but then he emerges from it, so that Brad Pittifulness seems astoundingly new again. He then gets to progress to his "Thelma and Louise" level of insane male beauty. There's a scene in "Button" where he returns to the (old) Cate Blanchett in this form and she exclaims "You're perfect!" and I wanted her to say "Oh my God! You're Brad Pitt!"

Titus said:
For the most part I hate almost every movie that comes out because I find them too boring and too much made for "normal America". I also hate sitting in a movie theater for two hours with other people....

On a seperate [sic] note I have a fear of the dentist. I am only able to go once a year because I literally freak out 24 hours before I go. I have to be sedated, gased and anything else to go. I go every year in January but I now have a toothache so I have to go tomorrow and I am freaking out....

The only good news about going to the dentist tomorrow is he gives me good drugs.

He is a big liberal. His wife works at the front desk and his dog runs around the office.

My dentist is a straight queen. Every time I go in there he shows me one of his new Yoga poses that he has just conquered.
Chuck b. said...
"My dentist is a straight queen."

I loathe heterosexual gay men. What's the phobicity for that?

My dentist is a feisty latina and I am devoted to her. As a regular flosser and non-drinker of sugary beverages, my teeth are always clean and my gums are "tight". I love it when she tells me my gums are tight. Noone else tells me that.
Beth — who lives in New Orleans, the city featured in the movie but not the Fitzgerald story — said:
The more days I am from having seen ["Ben Button"], the more little "hey, that didn't add up" moments I think of. I too could have done without the entire mother/daughter hospital plot. I kept dreading possible outcomes, and that was a distraction.

And no, there's no real chemistry between the leads. There were much more appealing relationships -- b/w Benjamin and the folks in the home, mainly. And the tugboat captain was a favorite of mine.

But I am a partisan for it still; there are lots of movies shot in New Orleans, and this one made such wonderful use of places I love. The bandstand where Daisy does her nighttime dance is one where my friends and I would perform late at night, running wild in the park as teens. Lanaux House, the setting for the Button household, was also the setting for the nasty Gallier sibling household in the 1982 version of Cat People. Overall, I just loved our streets and houses and streetcars and greenery. It all looked so good.
Chuck b. said:
I was in N'awlins once for a week, drunk the whole time. I ate every meal at Paul Prudhomme's place (spelling?!) and marvelled at the cockroaches on the sidewalk that came out when the sun went down. I walked all the way back to my hotel stepping on one cockroach after another, like stepping stones. God, what a great town.
Palladian said:
I cry at the end of "It's A Wonderful Life"....

"It's A Wonderful Life" is a perfect movie. I know that some people think it's commie propaganda and that some douchebag at the New York Times (natch) trashed it this year, but still. Brilliantly detailed, perfect performances. Sob, sob.
Zachary Paul Sire said:
I've actually never watched the entire "It's A Wonderful Life" from beginning to end. I've also never watched an entire episode of "The Simpsons" from beginning to end. Some things just don't appeal to me.
Chuck b. said...
I've never seen It's a Wonderful Life, even a little bit of it.
LoafingOaf said:
I'm also sorry I don't find life so wonderful. Will the movie change my mind? I still smile through most days, though. Life is depressing but you may as well life at it.

Sometimes I come to Althouse blog and the prof's life seems so perfect, and I've never been able to detect any terrible, or even messy, things going on beneath the surface. She's even chummy with her ex, and her sons seem way too well-adjusted. Does she keep it hidden, or is she for real? She seems so "together" I feel if I browse her blog enough it will rub off on me a little. But I do wanna determine whether she just keeps it hidden or if her having her shit so "together" is for real.
You should read what they say about me on those other blogs — where I'm a decrepit, crazy drunk. Obviously, I control the message here. But, in fact, I don't lie about myself. Even though some of my antagonists think I'm outrageously self-absorbed, I rarely reveal anything about my real-world life. Haven't you noticed? My topic selection and various opinions and attitudes may seem idiosyncratic and distinctive enough to give the impression of a window into my life. And my photographs, by physical necessity, show my point of view. But I'm not telling you about any sorrows and struggles that may afflict me. Yes, I have a job that immensely benefits me, but it is exceedingly rare for me to write about my colleagues or students. If they were giving me trouble, you wouldn't know. I'm very lucky to have 2 sons — but I'm not going to say anything bad about them, and I mostly don't write about them. And you see my occasional chumminess with my ex-husband, but we separated more than 20 years ago. You have no evidence at all of any post-1987 love affairs that I may have had and how I may have suffered.

LoafingOaf said:
Oh, well, at least Sarah Palin's life and family turned out to be a mess.
Beth said:
LoafingOaf, I'm just making a guess here, so cut me some slack if I'm offbase.

You might find life a little less depressing if you cut back on the hating, just a bit. Take Palin, for example. She's not running for anything right now. She lost. Why bother looking for a Palin thread anywhere? I know, I know; there are scores of conservatives who can't get through a day without hating on Algore or blaming Bill Clinton for today's crappy economy or holding out for Obama's super-secret African birth certificate -- but they're not good examples for you to follow.

I'm not saying you should be Mary Sunshine, but a small adjustments might be in order. If you just keep your targets of anger current, you'll cut back on a lot of unnecessary bile. And that will increase the room for a bit of wonder in your life.
See how we help each other here?

Chickenlittle said:
She's even chummy with her ex, and her sons seem way too well-adjusted. Does she keep it hidden, or is she for real?

My ex-girlfriend is chummy with my wife. She's coming to visit next weekend--with her husband. We all laugh and joke about the past.

My point is that you can choose to get past horrible hurts in the past--or not. It all depends on the parties involved (and their will to party)
Palladian said:
"Oh, well, at least Sarah Palin's life and family turned out to be a mess."

A mess? She was nominee for vice-president. She has a beautiful family. If you want a mess you should look to yourself and figure out why this woman drove you crazy, why this woman turned you from an interesting commenter to a bitter, twisted loser. Take Beth's advice, Mr Sullivan, and chill out.
Reader_iam, quoting me in the original "Ben Button" post, said:
the old story is crisp and unsentimental

Finally, some love for Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald.

And that's the end of the line in this paean to commenters.

Happy New Year, everybody. Let's sing "Auld Lang Syne":


Hoosier Daddy said...

See, when Professor Althouse goes on a rampage tagging commentors, garage mahal missed out yet again.

That poor bastard will never get his day in the Althousian sun.

kjbe said...

There was a similar reaction to Cate Blanchett's diaper line, though I didn't sens it as 'unnervingly warm' but empathetic and sweet - what I sensed was others who have parent's entering that stage.

I too, linked the dance studio scene Pitt with the Thelma & Louise Pitt. My daughter and I both chuckled, "Yes, perfect."

Ron said...

That you comment less on yourself means you're become more virtual?

If you're a decrepit, crazy drunk, so what, you're our decrepit, crazy drunk, way more interesting than the Pilates-sculpted crack babies who whine about you.

Listen, more emotional Althouse is better, not worse. We know your brand; emotional Althouse seals the deal. I forgive a lot of nonsense when there's real human feeling behind it, and go all California Santa on whiny, bitchy Know (and Feel) Nothings. That later group? That's not you.

Don't let yourself be bored or jaded; keep raising the bar as you do.

Ron said...

and, oh yeah, I can't stand It's a Wonderful Life. They used to call him "Frank Crapra" for a reason...

Eric Muller said...

Ann: "But I'm not telling you about any sorrows and struggles that may afflict me."

The one little word "may" in the above sentence encapsulates everything else in the paragraph in which it sits.

ricpic said...

I always take a leak just before going in to watch a movie. Sometimes I can make it through an average length film without a quick pisscall run. But a three hour film? A three hour film?! Does anyone other than yutes have the bladder control to hold for that eternity? Rachmones, Hollywood! Rachmones.

Darcy said...

Loved reading that thread this morning...just fantastic comments.

I hate post this right after Ron's comment (sorry, Ron!), but I especially loved Palladian's comments on It's a Wonderful Life.

Host with the Most said...

To all my commenters, the best commenters in the blogosphere.

I agree, Ann. This is a unique blog because of both you and your commenters. And on this very thing I commented a couple of weeks back:

"I began reading this blog almost 4 years ago through a quirk of links. The first post I read had palladian commenting, and he was awesome.

palladian is still the reigning commenter IMHO, gay, straight or otherwise.

After the master, I always enjoy
and look forward to reading everything by John Stodder, Simon, Drill Sgt, Pogo, Beth, mcg, Hoosier, Paddy O, trey, trooper and seven. I actually learn things from some of them, too. Several others are also good, but they escape my mind while listening to the lecturer in this class I am auditing drone on and on.

I only occasionally agree with Madison Man and Doyle, but their writing is top notch. Peter hoh is also a great writer. ZPS probably hates my guts - and frankly, I may deserve some of it - but he is often among the more fascinating writers.

And DTL is an enigma to me. Obviously he is radical in his disdain for those who don't toe to his vision of homosexual mores and rights, but he also often writes cogently and has been thought-provoking numerous times.

Even michael can sometimes hit a home run here.

I'm tellin ya': there is really no other blog like this anywhere".

Happy New Year!
And thank you, Ann

Host with the Most said...

I also want to say that the "Althouse" comments trolls on can kick the ass of any other blog's trolls. Anywhere. Anytime.

That's how good "Althouse" is.

tim maguire said...

I haven't seen Ben Button and I probably won't either, but I am curious about the opening scene. How did Mrs. Button push an old man through her birth canal?

Issob Morocco said...

Ann of Althouse, I appreciate that you keep your personal life mostly shrouded. Like classic Hollywood movies, we get just a glimpse of ankle, or a cameo silhouette, ala your father's record collection. That keeps our imaginations fertile grounds for wondering why you take some of the stands you do, but draws us back because we project on you, what we think our Ann of Althouse should be, or believe in, or argue for, or just take cool photos that we wish we could do.

Thanks for the fun in the last year, for absorbing our thoughts, whether sharp pointed or dimwitted dull and wishes for you to have a wonderful and happy New Year!

Happy New Cheers!!

garage mahal said...

That poor bastard will never get his day in the Althousian sun.

There are three ways I can see getting pub from A-House.

1. Kick a hippie.
2. Kick a Clinton.
3. Come off as a milquetoast "Democrat" whose sole mission is to kick other Democrats. Stodder I'm looking at you!

And since none of them really interest me, I doubt I'll ever see a tag. I have a blast with it and that's all that matters.

Sofa King said...

Rachmones, Hollywood! Rachmones.

Or at least intermissions.

I was watching 2001 recently and was struck by the inclusion - even on DVD - of the intermission title card and music. 2001 wasn't that long by modern standards, but the intermission was a convenient means to not have to watch the second half of the moving agonizing over choosing between missing part of the movie and enduring extreme discomfort.

bearbee said...

tim maguire said...
How did Mrs. Button push an old man through her birth canal?

F.Scott tells us he was 5'8" at birth. He doesn't say if that is standing straight or hunched over from age, but either way, OUCH!

Hope his toe nails were clipped.

Happy New Year, everybody. Let's sing "Auld Lang Syne":

it's always comforting to end the year on a positve note.
Billionaire Blowups of 2008

The guy who went from $1.1 billion to $0.00 ain't a happy man.

Boo hoo to others who went from muti-billions to less multi-billions.

Simon said...

Host, thanks, I didn't see that the other day. :)

"You have no evidence at all of any post-1987 love affairs that I may have had and how I may have suffered."

Well, we know that we can cross the other Richard Cohen off the list. ;)

"I rarely reveal anything about my real-world life. ... I'm not telling you about any sorrows and struggles that may afflict me."

And yet, like a plant growing through a concrete sidewalk, we grow fond. :)

Trooper York said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Palladian said...

"This is getting awful mushy."

I know. We need some hate and anger in here to balance everything out. Fuck you, Simon.

There. Better.

Tibore said...

Aw, heck, I was just happy to get a shout-out in the "My Wild Yard" thread back in the day. :D

That's satisfaction enough for me.

Palladian said...

"palladian is still the reigning commenter IMHO, gay, straight or otherwise."

Aw, shucks. Thanks, but I don't deserve the adulation. I never understand what people see in me. In fact, when I look over my commenting history here at Althouse, I seem to have turned from the quirky, dissatisfied but honorable George Bailey to the angry, vindictive and nihilistic Mr Potter in a few short years. I blame Bush.

"And DTL is an enigma to me. Obviously he is radical in his disdain for those who don't toe to his vision of homosexual mores and rights, but he also often writes cogently and has been thought-provoking numerous times."

If you search through other internet fora, DTL (or at least someone using that handle) used to comment as a moderate conservative, leaving courteous and reasonable comments. Then something happened, something obviously very painful and disruptive that changed him into the angry and irrational fruitcake he is now. In fact, his trajectory seems to closely mirror the downward spiral of one Andrew Sullivan. I've occasionally thought there was a connection.

Simon said...

Palladian said...
"We need some hate and anger in here to balance everything out. Fuck you, Simon. ¶ There. Better."

"You would...Lie with me?" [Alarm sounds] "I guess we've lied enough, haven't we?"

William said...

Salinger wrote that a writer sometiimes reveals more about himself describing his mourning of a dead hamster when a child than about his descriptions of failed love affairs in later life. (No Salinger was not referring to Richard Gere.) I think what you write here is probably more revelatory than you think. It is easier to judge a person by the clothes they wear than by their nudity.

KLDAVIS said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ron said...

I think Palladian wins this months "Wonderful Bissage" award!

Palladian said...

This seems to be my first comment here at Althouse. Maybe there is an earlier one, but it's not easy finding them because Google doesn't seem to be able to sort results by date. I remember what brought me here: Glenn Reynolds linked to her, or she guest-blogged over there. What made me stay and start to interact was the late, lamented podcast and Althouse's disdain (which I shared) for the then-new PajamasMedia.

Linus said...

Not to get too mushy, and no disrespect to our host, who was extremely helpful to me while I was in law school (somewhere other than Wisconsin), but most days I stop by and lurk to see if Palladian has written anything. It's like with fiction novels, everyone has a writer whose style they enjoy, and it's no different with bloggers or commenters. Commentators. Commentaters. Whatever.

Anonymous said...

William Shatner introduces the actual ending to It's a Wonderful Life where that scurvy little spider gets what's coming. Sorry if this is a repeat.

Trooper York said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
reader_iam said...

Holy shit. I actually posted something about a Diocesan convention way back then (on the thread Palladian linked)?!? Had I remembered that, I would have deleted it long ago. Eh, too late now.

reader_iam said...

Man, 11/2005 seems like an eternity ago.

Hoosier Daddy said...

And since none of them really interest me, I doubt I'll ever see a tag.

Well this is the new era of Hope so there are always possibilities.

Anonymous said...

But, please, Simon, not overly fond.

Althouse handles the distancing of her personal life very adroitly. I like her, but realize I am probably fond of a chimera, or at least her dressmaker.

She has done exactly what was necessary to create the persona she has for the success of her blog. And that should be enough, and a fine thing, for her admirers and commenters.

Another blog I follow closely is AmbivaBlog, whose proprietor, Annie Gottlieb, is a wonderful writer, but whose approach is opposite Althouse. Her blog is in many ways a diary, and she writes about her struggles and joys with a depth and a style that can take your breath away. I am often moved to tears by her work, and, frankly, I don't comment much over there because I often don't know what more to say, not that she isn't open and communicative. Annie has laid aspects of her soul bare in ways that in the hands of a lesser writer could be tedious or maudlin, but in her case always has something fascinating to say about life. That is the difference between a bore and and artist, and the difference between most other diarists and amba.

Althouse is an artist, too, but in an entirely different way. Althouse as personal as Annie Gottlieb would be a horror show, and Annie Gottlieb as distanced as Althouse would be a dreadful bore.

So, there you have it. Althouse is nearly perfect in what she does, and so are others. This is a wonderful place to comment, though, something which few others have bothered to cultivate.

Zachary Sire said...

I am getting a little misty eyed. I love you all, even the ones I can't stand. Thanks for always keeping things entertaining and provocative and infuriating and inspiring.

Trooper York said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Simon said...

Palladian, I would be afraid to go looking for mine. It took me a little while to get comfortable writing blog comments, and I'm sure that many of mine from 2005 and some from 2006 were awful.

Theo, I recognize that, now, we see through a web, darkly, but I'm a romantic, and very fond.

Hoosier Daddy said...

I am getting a little misty eyed. I love you all, even the ones I can't stand.

Great. I must be losing my touch.

chickelit said...

To all my commenters, the best comments in the blogosphere

Thank you for such a wonderful blog

P.S. thanks for the tag

Garage said: I doubt I'll ever see a tag.

The road to your fortune runs through Brooklyn.

reader_iam said...

Jeez, you guys. You're on the verge of bringing out the contrarian in me. ; )

I think I'll run away and hide. Maybe I'll go bore myself silly by agreeing to watch Wall-E again with my kid again. That'll put me in a stupor and render me submissive, fer shur.

TitusLastofTheFamousInternationalPlayboys said...

I just got back from the dentist and had to get three teeth pulled. It hurt so fucking bad. I do have vicadin and xanex now so hopefully that will help.

I anticipate to chase them down tonight with a grey goose vodka and tonic.

Just call me Judy....Judy, Judy, Judy-at least over the next couple of days.

That blog comment section last night was probably one of the most gay populated in Althouse history.

blake said...

Look, daddy! Teacher says every time a troll rings, an angel gets his wings.

TitusLastofTheFamousInternationalPlayboys said...

Where did you get your pizza from?

One thing I did do when I was in Madison last week is go to Paisans which is still my favorite pizza anywhere, including anywhere on the East Coast. I love the crust. Also, the Porta Salad is on my of my favorite salads anywhere.

Beth said...

Hey, cool, I have a tag. Thanks, Althouse!

Ron said...

To all my commenters, the best comments in the blogosphere

This line aches to be sung by Willie Nelson.

Anonymous said...

I've been reading comments here for quite some time. You have the most eclectic bunch Prof. Althouse! Love the blog. Hope for more of the same in the coming year.

TitusLastofTheFamousInternationalPlayboys said...

I have to admit that my contribution to this website really can't be understated.

I mean, really, what would this place be without me?

A truely original voice that speaks from the heart as well as the hog. You can't find that dynamic combination many places.

Not to toot my own horn but my God, I am a powerful voice for those without a voice.

TitusLastofTheFamousInternationalPlayboys said...

And....I just jerked off.

I don't jerk off much.

I usually go out and seek getting off but tonight I said what the heck, where is the astroglide?

TitusLastofTheFamousInternationalPlayboys said...

I am just a small town girl with a big city address.

A simple gal really. I like my Wisconsin food, my designer clothes and my exotic immigrant hog.

My tricks are always very complimentary of my treatment of them also. Yes, it is a quick affair but I usually zip my pants up and say something witty as I run away into the night. I almost always give them a kiss good night or good morning too. It's the little things in life that I try to do that really makes a difference in people's lives.

thank you.

Ann Althouse said...

Titus: "That blog comment section last night was probably one of the most gay populated in Althouse history."

Hey, I just saw "Milk." Will blog about it later, but I must go out to dinner now.

"Where did you get your pizza from?"

Pasta Per Tutti... where we only went because both Fresco and Crave were closed.

Ron said..."'To all my commenters, the best comments in the blogosphere' This line aches to be sung by Willie Nelson."

To all the commenters I've loved before...

TitusLastofTheFamousInternationalPlayboys said...

You know I kind of love you Divine Miss A.

blake said...

To all the commenters I've loved before...

For instance, TitusIsActingLikeAWhore!


For instance, the anti-semite CedarFord!


I'm reminded of Jay Sherman singing:

"To all the girls I've loved on-screen,
For instance, Stephen King's Christine!"

chickelit said...

shoot for the stars blake, shoot for the stars!

blake said...

Shoot, I'm impressed if I hit the ceiling, cl.

Jennifer said...

Palladian has long been my favorite commenter around here. And, I always love when Beth pops in to bust down a few good ol' boys.

As for DTL, three or four years ago right here on this blog, he was extremely rational. Overly rational, possibly. The only thing that really stuck out was a mildly callous laissez faire sensibility.

I don't remember what my exact first comment was, but I think it involved an irritable scuffle with a long gone know-it-all over whether or not New Orleans peeps (Beth, help me out...? Nawlinsians? New Orleandos?) could boil the sludge oozing through the streets and chug it down in a pinch.

Jennifer said...

Oh, and I would be remiss if I didn't mention that Freeman Hunt is one of the few commenters who I never skip over.

Host with the Most said...

It's probably for many regulars here hard to determine their first comment. Blogger did something that erased all of the comments to all of Ann's posts, from her first one in January 2004 through all of March 2005.

However, anyone can comment on those old ones now. Not that I'm trying to start anything. I'm just sayin . . .

Here is Ann's first blog post on "Althouse". A rather interesting beginning; it may explain a lot of what this blog is today:

This blog is called Marginalia, because I'm writing from Madison, Wisconsin, and Marginalia is a fictionalized name for Madison that I thought up a long time ago when I seriously believed I would write a fictionalized account of my life in Madison, Wisconsin. There is nothing terribly marginal about Madison, really, but I do like writing in the margins of books, something I once caused a librarian to gasp by saying. Writing in a blog is both less and more permanent than writing in the margin of a book.

Kirk Parker said...

Hmmm, that's a lot of anti-cockroach hostility that chuck b. is expressing! I hope the wrong person doesn't accidentally read this post.

blogging cockroach said...

oh i can take it kirk
it s just chuck b s own karma
i think after all that mass murder
he s coming back as a pinworm
expelled in titus s loaf
but then with only 960 brain cells
i don t presume to understand
the ways of the cosmos
maybe he ll really be punished
and come back as garage mahal
who never ever got a tag

ricpic said...

...a powerful voice for those without a voice.

Are you for real? A straight can hardly get a word in edgewise around here.

Freeman Hunt said...

Thanks, Jennifer. I never skip you either.

Look at all the love for the commentariate here. It is obvious: there must, at some point, be a nationwide Althouse meetup. It is inevitable.

blake said...

It is our destiny.

chickelit said...

It is obvious: there must, at some point, be a nationwide Althouse meetup. It is inevitable.

FH: That might prove hard to do logistically if centrally planned (i.e., nationwide). I suggest Althouse take page a from federalism and travel to different states or regions, and see what happens (I think she did that in NYC and LA already). For that matter, it would be interesting to see a US (or world) map with little pins stuck in it for each commenter. Which state has the most bona fide commenters? Not most frequent, (though that would be interesting too).

Beth said...

Hi Jennifer,

Call us whatever you want, just don't call us late for dinner. Really. New Orleanians like to eat.

Kirk Parker said...

"That might prove hard to do logistically if centrally planned (i.e., nationwide)."

What's so hard about saying, here's the time and place: come if you can?

Of course, it should really be somewhere she hasn't already been, like, oh... say... Seattle...


Freeman Hunt said...

Or... Dallas? I know nothing of Dallas except that it's somewhat centrally located and is a major American Airlines hub so flights might be shorter and cheaper.

Kirk Parker said...

Gosh, Freeman: just because DFW is closer to Arkansas than Seattle....

Trooper York said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kev said...

Or... Dallas? I know nothing of Dallas except that it's somewhat centrally located and is a major American Airlines hub so flights might be shorter and cheaper.

I'd certainly vote for Dallas (but I'm geographically biased, of course, as DFW Airport is about half an hour's drive from me).