Sunday salmagundi

• The Style network clip “Big Rich Texas Tip: Stylish Adult Baptism” seems to have appalled everyone, as it should. My favorite response comes from James W. McCarty III: “It is now impossible to defend capitalism, Texas, or cable television to me for the rest of the day. …”

• I hope that Frank Parlato does not have a wife. I pray that he does not have a daughter.

• Jesus is the answer. And the question, it turns out, is “What is one of the most ineffective login passwords?

• Here is an article on succubi from the Forgotten Realms Wiki.

And here is an article on succubi from Charisma magazine.

The difference between these two articles is that people who play Dungeons & Dragons know that succubi are not real. Not found in the Monster Manual: the Horse of Satan.

• Pat Robertson says maybe God did not tell him that Mitt Romney would win the election after all: “I thought I heard from God, I thought I had heard clearly from God, what happened?”

But hey, sometimes it’s hard to discern what it is that the Lord Spirit is guiding you to do.

• Vikki makes the case for outing Peppermint Patty and Marcie. Wait … when was this a secret?

Ditto what John Scalzi says here, particularly No. 3 and No. 6.

Related: Ana Mardoll offers smart advice on “How to Be a (Male) Ally.”

No. The book of Genesis does not claim to present an “eyewitness account” of creation. That is not in the text. That is not permitted by the text. The storyteller makes no claim to having witnessed the story being told. The storyteller makes it very clear that the storyteller was not there. Nor does the storyteller claim to have taken divine dictation or to be providing a “God’s eye” account of the story. Neither the creation story in Genesis 1 nor the creation story in Genesis 2 allows for this.

Dennis Markuze/David Mabus has been arrested. Again. Here’s hoping he gets the help he needs.

Ta-Nehisi Coates begins reading Raymond Chandler. Coates has some sharp insights on “Hitchcock, Chandler and Misogyny,” and his readers offer some smart perspectives as well.

This, I think, is the key to Chandler: “Marlowe is genuinely in moral jeopardy. … Marlowe is trying to hang on to just enough self-respect to live with himself, and it’s not at all clear he’ll manage.”

My take: Chandler’s Marlowe is Conrad’s Marlow.

• Hier stehe Ich: “You are telling me to lie and say I do not believe God calls both men and women to the priesthood. … This I cannot do, therefore I will not recant.”

A rabbi visits Gaudi’s Sagrada Familia in Barcelona: “I always love visiting sacred spaces. Even if they’re not ‘mine’ …”

  • http://twitter.com/shutsumon Becka Sutton

    To be fair it’s not like D&D created incubi and succubi – they are traditional demons. A bit of background from wikipedia to show the antiquity of the belief http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Succubus

    It’s really not that odd that some Christians still believe in them. No more so than the fact some Muslims believe in djinn and some Hindus and Buddhists in rakshasha. We who believe things that seem strange to others should not mock others for believing strange things as long as they keep their beliefs out of the state.

    And really sleep paralysis is no less scary when you know what’s causing it is purely physiological. You sure as hell feel like something is attacking you so it’s no wonder to me that some people actually believe that it’s real.

  • JustoneK

    MAN they have fabulous hair in that art.

    Yanno what’s really odd to me?  That succubi are common enough to be vidyagame monsters and incubi are strange and obscure.  

  • EllieMurasaki

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/26/world/asia/bangladesh-fire-kills-more-than-100-and-injures-many.html –One Triangle Shirtwaist fire fucking well should have been one too many.

    The part that scares me? I couldn’t remember the name ‘Triangle Shirtwaist’–brainfarts, what can you do–so I Googled, and the first hits were this same damn thing happening in Pakistan a couple months ago. Twice. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/13/world/asia/hundreds-die-in-factory-fires-in-pakistan.html?pagewanted=all I never heard about either instance. I guess no one who did hear cared enough to make sure other people heard too.

    The Bangladesh factory was making clothes for Walmart. The Wiki article on the Pakistan fires says the garment factory was making jeans for Europe and the US. Can’t find where the shoe factory was making shoes for, but, you know, it was probably the US. And I’m betting that the things that made those factories deathtraps and that made people willing to work in them anyway are systematic problems.

    I have created a petition on petitions.whitehouse.gov with the goal of enforcing US worker-safety and minimum wage standards on suppliers of goods and their pieces-parts to US markets. The pre-shortened URL is http://wh.gov/IIJ5

  • Lori

    snow white and the huntsman is such a film. when my boys were young i would never have allowed them to go to such a film for i believe it
    would injure their developing manhood.  

    Having read a few old school romance novels in my day my response to this (incredibly stupid) statement was, “WTH? He thinks Snow White & the Huntsman would hurt his sons’ penises? How would that even work?”

    AFAICT the only damage that SW&tH might do to his sons’ development is to make them feel bad that they’re unlikely to ever have Chris Hemsworth’s physique. I’m not in favor of people’s body image being damaged by mass-produced entertainment, but that’s hardly a problem unique to sons.

    Also, I haven’t seem the movie but I seriously doubt they cast Chris Hemsworth to play a weakling or a eunuch (I do not even get the hyena thing at all). I can only assume that Parlato means that the Huntsman doesn’t automatically think that he is always and everywhere the boss of Snow White and that he does not attempt to rape her at any point in the story. Quelle horroure! How could the developing penises of his sons remain undamaged in the face of such a nightmare vision?

  • EllieMurasaki

    Hemsworth’s character follows first Queen Ravenna’s orders, then Princess-later-Queen Snow’s. Also in his first scene he’s drunk off his ass and it’s pretty clear that this is not the first time by a long shot; he’s in mourning for his wife, who (it is implied) Ravenna killed. Any of those three might make Parlato consider the Huntsman insufficiently manly; any two would ensure it.

  • Lori

    So mourning one’s dead wife = eunuch and taking orders from a female head of state = weakling

    It’s all so clear now. The penises of the younger Parlato males were clearly in grave danger. Thank goodness they have their dad looking out for the safety of their dicks.  [eyeroll]

  • Tricksterson

    I haven’t seen the movie.  Anyone who has what is in it that might drive this guy to such paranoid frothing, although he gives the impression that he’s never too far away from that.

  • Tricksterson

    To be fair:  A:  The Monster Manual does have Nightmares which could be defined as demonic horses if not specifically coming from Satan’s stables.

    B: The show never did explain how Mr. Ed could talk.

  • Tricksterson

    Have any of Pat Robertson’s predictions ever come true?

  • P J Evans

     Not that I know of. I am surprised that he hasn’t yet been struck by lightning.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    That picture? Barack Obama is officially the coolest President, ever.

  • Lori

    I think he officially became the coolest president ever with the marshmallow launcher in the state dinning room, but this one is indeed very cool.

  • Don Gisselbeck

    Any mention of password strength needs this http://xkcd.com/936/.

  • wendy

    Has Pat Robertson considered that maybe the Lord is just fucking with him? 

    This would be the same Lord that told Michelle Bachman to run for president, who told Rick Santorum to run, who told Rick Perry to run… 

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    And really sleep paralysis is no less scary when you know what’s causing it is purely physiological

    Yep. When it happens to me, I know it’s sleep paralysis. I also know for absolutely sure beyond a shadow of a doubt that a man broke into my home and is going to rape me. And I can’t move or scream. Something about sleep paralysis makes our worst fears seem absolutely real, and no amount of knowledge seems able to prevent that. 

    However, once it’s over, I know that it was sleep paralysis and that there was no rapist there. If I insisted otherwise, then I would have serious problems, and it would be my duty to fix them. 

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    It’s not odd, it’s misogyny and the male gaze and the idea that women exist to be sex objects but men must not be regarded as sex objects ever. I would have zero problems with women often being presented as sex objects if men were just as much.

    Though to be fair, I think it has a lot to do with the fact that succubi are thought of as seductresses, while incubi are rapists, full stop. Also, the thought of being forcibly impregnated is nothing like the thought of impregnating someone else. incubi are seriously frightening — and far too close to the truth for too many women. It would be nice if we could change the mythology around incubi to make it about hot seductive sex, and not about rape and forcible pregnancy, but I don’t see it working any time soon. 

    The Persona games have incubi, btw. They are creepy as hell. Their penises are as big as their entire bodies, and pointed. The games also have succubi, who are sexy. I think that points to a certain truth about the incubi/succubi mythologies. The former are terrifying. The latter… not so much.

  • Carstonio

    I don’t like Vikki’s theory because it’s the old homophobic idea that non-conformance to gender stereotypes equates to non-straight orientation. Part of combating homophobia is teaching that making such assumptions is wrong and unjustified. I would even consider the idea that societies shouldn’t have gender norms as value concepts in the first place.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Sue-White/1605859612 Sue White

    I pray that he does not have a daughter.

    If he does have a daughter, praying about it now won’t do any good.

  • Andrew_Ryans_Caddy

    My favorite succubus is Fall-From-Grace from Planescape: Torment, the chaste, dignified lady who decided that a raving sex monster is a lousy thing to be and she’s not going to do it. She runs an intellectual “brothel” where the role of the girls is to be interesting in different ways. One tells stories, one insults you in inventive ways, one plays games. 

    Yeah this is just to say how great Planescape Torment is. 

  • Jenny Islander

    “Marshmallow launcher in the state dining room.”

    Okay, he’s invited to all of our local SCA events EVER.  ”Lord Barak of the Isles” and his large group of very quiet “squires” with little curly wires hanging from their ears . . . with marshmallow launchers.

    Anyway, the incubus is portrayed as utterly sexy in at least one version of D&D, by which I mean posed like the  pinups male actors do for the hetero female gaze.  In at least one version, incubi and succubi are the same monster, the name differing depending on gender, which makes the most sense to me.

    Assuming that they’re real is–it’s sad.

  • JustoneK

    Okay, ow.  And that’s the first modern interpretation I’d seen – most others are just fantasy books that I can recall, not even, say, movies/games.

    Sorta blows my mind the gender disparity there.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Patrick-McGraw/100001988854074 Patrick McGraw

    The only significant  incubus from D&D that I can think of is the Gentleman Caller from Ravenloft – and the developers actually regret that they ever positively identified him as an incubus rather than keeping his nature a mystery.

    Damn, I miss Ravenloft.

  • Lori

     

    Okay, he’s invited to all of our local SCA events EVER.  ”Lord Barak of
    the Isles” and his large group of very quiet “squires” with little curly
    wires hanging from their ears . . . with marshmallow launchers.   

    I think you’d also have to invite Joey Hudy since the marshmallow launcher actually belongs to him. It was his project for a science fair and the winners were invited to the White House and that’s where the president got to play with it. The whole interaction between Obama and the kid made my geeky little heart grow 3 sizes.

    Story about it:

    http://www.nationaljournal.com/whitehouse/obama-shoots-marshmallow-through-state-dining-room-at-science-fair-video-20120207

    Full Video:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RN62M2Zjr-A

  • Jenora Feuer

    I commented on the Parlato case over at Pharyngula, where it was also mentioned.  The story came up in the Toronto Star on Friday:

    http://www.thestar.com/entertainment/movies/article/1291884–niagara-falls-film-critic-battles-with-publisher-over-movies-with-strong-women

    One interesting note mentioned in that story is that this same publisher went on a rant back in July complaining about the NHL ‘endorsing homosexuality’.  He was referring to the ‘You Can Play’ project, which was set up in memory of Brendan Burke, a homosexual hockey player and son of Brian Burke; Brian is currently the General Manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs.  (Which was part of why the Toronto Star remembered it, likely.)  Brendan’s brother Patrick was one of the people who set up the foundation; the Burke family in general has been actively fighting against casual locker-room homophobia for years since Brendan came out.

    Considering that, as some have suggested, homophobia and misogyny are pretty closely related, both based on the ‘traditional gender roles’… the fact that this person shows both is not surprising.

  • Frithweaver

    Hey enjoy some Straw Feminists from Kate Beaton: http://www.harkavagrant.com/index.php?id=341 (funny!)

  • vsm

    I’ve never been quite sure what to make of the relationship between the summoner and the persona in relation to those two and Mara. Apparently the games left certain dimensions of Minato, Hamuko and Souji’s psyches unexplored.

    Oh, and I’m pretty sure Peppermint Patty played baseball rather than softball.

  • mud man

    Personally, I think of Feminism as conversation by women about women and whatever else they want to talk about, and men, all men, should STFU and listen hard or not at all. Sorta like JS #3: anything a man says is going to be mansplaining even if it’s smart and it probably isn’t. I think it is symptomatic of the central problem that many man feel with great stridency that they have a right to be on the platform. Of course men and women can talk together, but when women get together men should leave them to it.

    So no, I’m not a feminist, just an admirer. A little bit trans, but never an insider. Of course, as always, if you are without sin, go ahead.

  • EllieMurasaki

    I have no problem with men identifying as feminist. If they’re doing it because they think it’ll get feminist women to give them cookies and/or sex, they’re doing it wrong. But if they’re doing it because they have paid attention to gender (and other intersecting) inequities and they have paid attention to feminists discussing why these inequities exist and how to address them, if they’re doing it as part of addressing these inequities, if they know what privilege is and they’re paying attention to when their privilege is in action and they’re doing what they can to minimize the impact of that privilege, I see absolutely nothing wrong with it.

  • GDwarf

    Any mention of password strength needs this http://xkcd.com/936/.

    That one’s good, but insufficient. It turns out that almost everyone using that system constructs sentences related to the website and then chops a few words out. That makes it trivial for a hacker to try and guess the phrase.

    Of course, if you don’t do that then you need different, impossible-to-guess, pass phrases for hundreds of different websites and such, which the site itself provides no clue for. This is…difficult.

    What people should use are “Password Safes” such as KeePass, 1Pass, or LastPass, which can generate and store (in encrypted form) uncrackable passwords.

  • GDwarf

     

    Anyway, the incubus is portrayed as utterly sexy in at least one version
    of D&D, by which I mean posed like the  pinups male actors do for
    the hetero female gaze.  In at least one version, incubi and succubi are
    the same monster, the name differing depending on gender, which makes
    the most sense to me.

    Well, wasn’t that roughly how they worked in mythology? The idea was that demons couldn’t create life, so one would become a succubus to get “seed” from a man, then become an incubus to transfer it to a woman. One assumes that the offspring of this was a demon, or else it would be rather pointless.

  • stardreamer42

     In Operation Chaos by Poul Anderson, the protagonists encounter a sex demon who seduces rather than rapes — as in, even someone who wants to resist finds themselves irresistibly attracted. Also, it’s explicitly stated that incubi and succubi are identical, changing sexual presentation as required.

  • EllieMurasaki

    Or it’s simply a way to explain away at one stroke both men having erotic dreams resulting in ejaculation and women getting pregnant when people knew she either hadn’t a husband or had a husband who hadn’t been sexing her at that time (or alternately women having children who resembled a third party more than either parent). I don’t recall anyone saying that children whose mother swore they were *cubus babies were therefore demons, but it’s certainly possible.

  • EllieMurasaki

    the protagonists encounter a sex demon who seduces rather than rapes — as in, even someone who wants to resist finds themselves irresistibly attracted

    Contradictory statement. Seduction takes a ‘maybe, maybe not, feel free to try to convince me’ to a ‘yes’. (Or a ‘no’ to a ‘yes’, according to some, but I’d file that under coercion myself.) Being irresistibly attracted sounds to me like being unable to say no. Which isn’t necessarily always the case, but combine that with wanting to say no and ending up sexing anyway, and yeah, that’s rape, not seduction.

  • reynard61

    “I do not even get the hyena thing at all(.)”

    Hyenas are matriarchal in their social structure: http://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/hyena.html (paragraph 10)

  • http://www.oliviareviews.com/ PepperjackCandy

    In the only sleep paralysis experience I can remember having, I must have remembered tales that the thing weighing one down was supposed to be gray, and so my brain made it my (gray-and-white tabby) cat.

    I’m not sure why my brain made it a comforting experience rather than a horrifying one, but I’m sure glad it did.

  • mud man

    Men can do all those things while staying in their own locker room. Any oppressed/distressed/neglected  moiety should have the right to talk things over from their own point of view, and it is always a strategy of the Overclass to prevent the Otherclass from caucusing without supervision: bosses – unions, nobles – serfs, etc etc. How can you ever discern whether an individual man’s motives are out of hopes of getting strokes in one form or another? How to separate the sheep from the goats?Where is the Masculist movement that should be putting its own personal reproductive anatomy on the line in the shared quest for progress towards healthy gender roles?

    Have you seen Roger Olson’s recent tiff with Dianna Anderson?

  • Lori

    Is that information some sort of MRA dog whistle or something? Or does everyone have that information at the fingertips except me? I’m wondering why he would assume that it would be a reference that his readers would just get.

  • EllieMurasaki

    Well, yeah, if people set up a space and say people who fit these requirements can come in and everyone else must stay out, anyone who’s part of the else needs to stay out; this is true regardless of what the requirements are. I do not think feminism is a space where any woman can come in and every man must stay out, though it certainly needs to include such spaces. (If nothing else, how, given the existence of trans and genderqueer people, are we defining ‘woman’ and ‘man’?) And actually I don’t particularly care about motive, I care much more about results, but someone who says he’s a feminist in hopes of getting cookies and/or sex from feminist women is probably not sufficiently engaged with the movement to produce positive results.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Huh. The only expression I know about is “laughing like a hyena” which apparently connotes an irritating-sounding laugh that’s as pleasant as nails on a blackboard.

  • reynard61

    “Is that information some sort of MRA dog whistle or something? Or does everyone have that information at their fingertips except me? I’m wondering why he would assume that it would be a reference that his readers just get.”

    Actually, I was inferring it from the context in which he uses the term “hyena” — i.e. “weakling, hyena-like men”. (It clicked that way in my mind because I remembered seeing a show called “Nature’s Gangstas” contrasting a group of hyenas with a pride of lions and it mentioned that the hyena’s social order is matriarchal.)

  • Andrew_Ryans_Caddy

    The feeling behind it is good, but what you’re saying disturbs me.  As a woman, I think a lot of harm is rooted in the view of us as a separate species who are comprehensible only to other women, when in actuality we’re just normal people. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Patrick-McGraw/100001988854074 Patrick McGraw

     

    Well, wasn’t that roughly how they worked in mythology? The idea was
    that demons couldn’t create life, so one would become a succubus to get
    “seed” from a man, then become an incubus to transfer it to a woman. One
    assumes that the offspring of this was a demon, or else it would be
    rather pointless.

    Yep. The resulting offspring was called a cambion.

    They played a big role in the Gentleman Caller’s plans in the Ravenloft metaplot, but we never got more than a few of his dozen-plus children identified.

  • Andrew_Ryans_Caddy

    Interestingly, according to some of the legends, Merlin was a cambion.

  • Matri
  • Matri

    Re “DM”. One word, three syllables: A-Ba-Cus!

  • BaseDeltaZero

    In at least one version, incubi and succubi are the same monster, the name differing depending on gender, which makes the most sense to me.

    Yeah, that… with the addendum that, being demons, they are technically genderless shapeshifters.

    Being irresistibly attracted sounds to me like being unable to say no. Which isn’t necessarily always the case, but combine that with wanting to say no and ending up sexing anyway, and yeah, that’s rape, not seduction.

    Well, they are demons.  Not Nice things are sort of to be expected.

  • The_L1985

    I need to play this game. NOW.

  • The_L1985

    Website? I use the Correct Horse Battery Staple-type password for my laptop.

  • The_L1985

    Look up harlequin ichthyosis (or better yet, don’t; photos are DEEPLY disturbing) and you have yet another possible suspect for “demon baby” story origins. Not that we’d need another.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    http://youtu.be/a6iW-8xPw3k

    Obligatory “Spaceballs” reference! :D


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