2019 Ask MetaFilter answers by mathowie (displaying 1 through 50)

For Christmas, I decided to set up a 529 college savings account for my 7 month-old nephew. My sister and her husband flipped out, saying I am trying to use their child for tax deductions. I don't understand what I did wrong. Insight please?
comment posted at 3:05 PM on Dec-27-14
comment posted at 4:15 PM on Dec-27-14


How do I get a Samsung WB350F camera to save portrait oriented images in the correct orientation?
comment posted at 7:11 AM on Dec-27-14
comment posted at 8:56 AM on Dec-27-14


I'm looking for a very professional-looking Wordpress theme with parallax scrolling. Preferably horizontal, wouldn't mind if it were standard vertical. Something clean, simple and modern. The less glitches/bugs, the better.
comment posted at 7:21 AM on Dec-27-14


I'm pregnant. Do I tell the boy*?
comment posted at 8:27 PM on Dec-19-14


Asking for a friend. What one book would you recommend for a college aged son who has specifically requested a book "to learn about something"? He's a really great kid who has really matured a lot in the past year - business major, likes sports. Open to all suggestions!
comment posted at 11:51 AM on Dec-19-14


What information and support is out there for adult children of people who themselves survived child abuse (including physical, sexual, and verbal / emotional abuse)? How can abuse survivors' families (including adult children) navigate the effects of untreated trauma?
comment posted at 9:39 AM on Dec-19-14


Just booked my int'l flight by way of Denver a little under 24 hours ago. Could anyone help me get empirical data (at least a prior probability) of flights to and fro DEN cancelled or severely delayed, compared against ones in and out of SFO around this time of year? I'm slightly concerned about my flight into DEN potentially snowed in, and wanted to get a better sense if it's worth switching to an alternative flight to the same destination via SFO on the ~same day. Thanks a lot!
comment posted at 10:25 AM on Dec-8-14


I just submitted a group paper. Hours before I ran it through a plagiarism checker, turns out two (!) of the group members had directly copy and pasted sentences from accademic articles into our paper. In total, no more than five sentences were plagiarized These sentences were cited but not quoted directly. I informed all group members who seemed unconcerned...Is this a big deal? Is it worth reporting? (Fwiw, I edited their work before submitting a final copy)
comment posted at 12:08 PM on Dec-6-14


My toddler (2 years old) has been regressing big time. She regressed on potty training a while back, but that's not what concerns me. Now she refuses to feed herself, she has stopped making verbal requests, she whispers instead of speaking aloud. I'm not asking why the regression, so much as how do I deal with it?
comment posted at 2:33 PM on Dec-5-14


Is there any research that compares the number of indictments by Grand Juries of public servants and/or government officials versus indictments by Grand Juries of non public servants and/or non government officials?
comment posted at 3:26 PM on Dec-4-14


A close family member has been diagnosed with Ankylosing Spondylitis. We are interested in starting a restricted diet (no starch, no dairy, and limiting some other potentially problematic foods) then gradually adding back in dairy/other to see what works for him. I am looking for recommendations for no/low starch food "substitutes" for things like pasta and bread, as well as brands of off-the-shelf-items that fit the bill. If you're on this diet, I would also be curious about how you started.
comment posted at 6:01 PM on Dec-2-14


I was recently diagnosed with a UTI at an urgent care clinic. The PA (I did not see an MD or NP) prescribed a ten-day course of cipro to treat it (500mg, twice a day, for 10 days). That seems excessive to me (though I will take the full course of antibiotics as prescribed). Is such a long course of antibiotics commonly prescribed for UTIs?
comment posted at 7:43 PM on Nov-28-14


What are Thanksgiving sides that travel well?
comment posted at 7:04 AM on Nov-26-14


After three years they (or specifically one case worker) are telling me that I was not supposed to get the full benefits for the last three years like I was. She's reduced it by almost two thirds. I don't think I believe her and I want the full benefits again but don't know what to do.
comment posted at 1:23 PM on Nov-19-14


I had a pretty terrible encounter with an incredibly aggressive person today. I feel a bit shaky and fragile. How do I cope when I deserve what happened to me?
comment posted at 5:14 PM on Nov-7-14


An old friend now living in another state looked me up. At first they seemed to have been experiencing the aftereffects of significant but ordinary traumatic events in life. I now believe they are struggling with significant mental illness that they are in denial of. I don't know how I could help them or if it's even a good idea to try.
comment posted at 3:01 PM on Nov-5-14


Wee Thumbscrew, aged nine, is a weird, morbid, hilarious child. Lately, at bedtime, we've been reading "weird Wikipedia" articles together, and they have been a HUGE hit. Please provide us with some of YOUR favorite utterly deranged Wiki pages. Spooky/gory/X-Files-y stuff is a-okay, real-life serial killers or smutty stuff is not. Here are some entries we've enjoyed:
comment posted at 2:09 PM on Nov-5-14


I often see recommendations on MeFi that people should seek counseling/therapy. In your direct experience, how has therapy affected you (or, less preferably, someone you know very well)? To be artless about it, therapy (I suppose) is supposed to help you change from one kind of person to another. To the extent you feel comfortable posting about it, can you explain the effect(s) on a particular person (ideally, you) that you have seen from therapy? How does it change one's personhood/capacity/inner life/ability to do stuff?
comment posted at 3:54 PM on Nov-2-14
comment posted at 6:04 PM on Nov-2-14


A lot of ink has been spilled on the subject of whether video games are art, but rorgy's recent megapost on Homestuck reminded me that comparatively little has been written on the idea of Internet Art. Such works that leverage the internet as a unique creative medium fascinate me, and I'd love to find more. What are some other works that qualify?
comment posted at 11:47 AM on Nov-2-14


I'm looking for clean, pretty, visually stimulating blogs for quick study breaks.
comment posted at 11:50 AM on Nov-2-14


Early twenties couple fumbling through sex. Him: sometimes can't keep up an erection, or has to keep stopping and starting. Me: can't orgasm and it all feels a bit lukewarm. I'm worried that this will eventually kill our relationship. Sorry for the wall of text but I'm getting a bit desperate.
comment posted at 3:12 PM on Nov-4-14


I’m not entirely sure where to post this on the Internet, because it seems that there are a million different opinions out there. It’s like asking, what’s the best diet to lose weight, when everyone will tell you his or her favorite diet. Regardless, I need some help. I need some guidance, a model to follow. I need to know how to get laid and/or a girlfriend. Preferably, a girlfriend.
comment posted at 2:21 PM on Oct-31-14
comment posted at 2:29 PM on Oct-31-14


I currently pay one full week's pay each month, $600, toward my current student loan balance of $97,000+. Though I usually just pay it and try to move on, I know it will follow me to my death and if I can't be rid of it I hope some of you can provide some kind of advice or coping strategies. I have read through a fair number of related questions.
comment posted at 7:10 AM on Oct-31-14


I am looking for contact information for a specific person, and since all of my leads have been exhausted, I'm thinking about using one of those sites like Spokeo to reach them. Is there any good information out there on which of these is the best and/or anecdotal information about which of them is best?
comment posted at 5:49 PM on Dec-19-14


I am writing a script in which one of the characters is a prof (religious studies/history). I need background. Tell me your stories of cooperation/quid pro quo, between students, professors, departments, admins, schools.
comment posted at 6:09 PM on Oct-29-14
comment posted at 6:19 PM on Oct-29-14


So, I'm having coffee with a polyamorous women who is potentially interested in submitting to me. Help me guess what she might mean, ahead of time, so I can be more fluent when we talk. (Trigger warning: graphic consensual violence.)
comment posted at 5:46 PM on Oct-29-14


My podcast network is piloting a pop culture panel show. Chat about culture high and low, fun and funny and well-informed. It needs a name. What have you got? Pithy and understandable on first glance really helps. If we use yours, we will credit you and send you a box of maximumfun.org stuff from our prize closet :).
comment posted at 10:33 PM on Oct-28-14


I'm thinking there must be many real people out there with the same names as fictional TV characters. They had these names before the TV show ever came into being, but because of the huge popularity of these shows, their lives must be changed.
comment posted at 9:45 AM on Oct-24-14


I was recently given a heavy Mac G5 Tower by my uncle. It has Mac OS 10.4 "TIGER" on it...
comment posted at 7:18 AM on Oct-24-14


6-speed manual transmission, standard clutch--not "paddle" or "semi-automatic" or "clutchless." Two ways to stop:
comment posted at 12:16 PM on Oct-25-14


Having read every previous wonderful Ask about Disneyland in Anaheim, CA, I've discovered that some of the game apps that folks here recommended a few years ago are now nowhere to be found on iTunes or the App Store, etc. Please help me find a cool, Disneyland-themed app to play on my iPhone with my 7-year-old DS while we wait in the lines during our upcoming trip to Disneyland.
comment posted at 2:01 PM on Oct-21-14


My partner had a significant mental health event in the past that nobody (neurologists or psych people) have been able to explain. It's never reappeared and there was no history beforehand, but it's a significant source of worry for both of us. Blizzard within.
comment posted at 5:30 PM on Oct-17-14


So I was lucky enough to see Ray Charles before he died at the Hollywood Bowl. And Sarah Vaughn at the Blue Note in the 80's. And Ella at Radio City around the same time. But I never got to see Sinatra. Or Sammy. Or Nina Simone. Largely because I couldn't afford it. So now it occurs to me I can. And Southwest tickets aren't that expensive if I want to go anywhere in the US. So who should I see among the greats - who are still out there playing - before it's too late?
comment posted at 3:39 PM on Oct-15-14


I am wondering if it's ok to leave my cat home alone overnight once or twice a week.
comment posted at 4:44 PM on Oct-6-14


Okay, so... it was a TV show in the US, in the '80s or early '90s. I'm fairly certain it was a sitcom. During the intro/ opening credits, there's a bit where one character is painting a wall or a door, and another character opens the door, and the first character rolls the paint roller over the other person's face. I can see this in my mind, but I cannot for the life of me figure out the show it came from.
comment posted at 9:28 AM on Nov-5-14


I never see anyone do it. Being a guy though, I only see men's restrooms. Maybe it's different in women's. I can't even remember seeing a guy brush his teeth in the restroom, let alone floss. Also, I imagine an office restroom has different oral hygiene etiquette than a restroom at say, the mall -- true?
comment posted at 7:21 AM on Oct-1-14


So my wife decided rather last-minute to tour the So. Oregon/California Coast from Coos Bay to San Francisco, as she wraps up a summer detail in NorCal.
comment posted at 3:19 PM on Sep-28-14


I am nervous and excited to be tapering off Prozac. What can I expect?
comment posted at 12:12 PM on Sep-26-14


I have been speaking English for 2/3 of my life, yet I still think my English sucks. Care to enlighten me why?
comment posted at 6:50 PM on Sep-23-14


I'm considering attending the Geological Society of America conference this October in Vancouver, BC. I'm an undergrad geology student, and a student member of GSA. I'm not making a presentation, receiving an award, or bringing a poster. Do people ever attend conferences like this for fun? Or would I end up feeling like it was a waste of time and money, attending a conference that really wasn't intended for people like me?
comment posted at 10:41 AM on Sep-23-14


Hi all, I had my first appointment with a pain management doctor last week that did not go well. I am curious about the legality of the contract that I was required to sign in order to receive care.
comment posted at 1:46 PM on Sep-13-14


After a divorce and some time, I'm dating again and have met a super awesome guy. We're taking things slow but there's chemistry. So I need help about an issue that could come up between us.
comment posted at 11:41 AM on Sep-13-14


What would be fun things to do when a long-distance makeout buddy is visiting? (other than, uh, make out) What little things would make this special and interesting and fun?
comment posted at 8:42 AM on Sep-12-14


The pharmacy gave my mother double the prescribed dosage of Baclofen, which possibly caused or contributed to a condition resulting in a trip to the emergency room. My dad, unfortunately and perhaps not in a clear frame of mind, went to the pharmacy to give them a dressing-down, and returned the bottle. IF (and it's a big if) litigation is in our future, what other evidence or documentation should we be collecting now?
comment posted at 10:32 AM on Sep-10-14


How is it possible to feel anxious and questioning most of the time, but also feel genuine moments of excitement to see him and genuine calm/happiness to be in his presence?
comment posted at 5:04 PM on Sep-9-14


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