12747 Ask MetaFilter answers by jessamyn (displaying 1 through 50)

Is there some kind of discernible justification for the allowance of the word "em" (meaning, the letter "m") in Scrabble, and not, say for example, the "word" "ee" (meaning, the letter "e")? I mean, who the heck decided "em" was a word, and if it is, why aren't all letters "words"?!
comment posted at 7:38 PM on Dec-19-14

I have a fairly painful toothache due to an exposed nerve that started a couple days ago. Unfortunately, I couldn't get in to see a dentist until next Tuesday, but the pain is definitely getting worse. I'm probably going to go to the campus clinic tomorrow to see if I can get some painkillers (and maybe antibiotics if they decide I need them), but are there any other ideas out there for dealing with tooth pain? I'm not a huge fan of taking opiates for longer than I need to (drowsiness, addictive potential, acetaminophen side effects, etc.), and I've found that the oral numbing gel is ineffective.
comment posted at 6:59 PM on Dec-19-14

At what point in the long, slow, steady decline of a marriage with young children does "we should keep trying to work things out, if only for the kids" become "for the kids' sake, we shouldn't be together"?
comment posted at 10:16 AM on Dec-19-14

Calling all Reference Librarians: I'm looking for daily weather data for Shasta County in California from 1892. I have no idea where to begin. Help?
comment posted at 10:57 AM on Dec-19-14

SFW version : I have no problem getting 'it' up, but I have a problem reaching climax. My basic research says it's likely psychological. So I'm looking to you guys for recommendations. The version inside is NSFW.
comment posted at 10:35 AM on Dec-19-14

An older relative has been diagnosed with peripheral neuropathy in his legs. It isn't debilitating, but it is causing problems with driving, as some days he can't feel the pedals well enough to control the car safely. Would hand controls help him stay independent?
comment posted at 8:02 AM on Dec-18-14

Turns out reading aloud to lovers in bed is hot, but I’m close to exhausting my library of things that work for me. I’m looking for stuff that…
comment posted at 1:56 PM on Dec-17-14

My lovely clear plastic icicles have aged through the years and I need help returning them to their pristine wintry looks.
comment posted at 9:54 AM on Dec-17-14

I have a good female friend whom I have some history with and a girlfriend. My friend is hurting as I prioritize her less and my girlfriend more. I want to respect both of them and their feelings.
comment posted at 3:23 PM on Dec-16-14

Many apparently out-of-copyright books on Google Books are open access. Others return limited sections in response to search queries. Yet others are completely inaccessible. Why?
comment posted at 8:10 PM on Dec-15-14

Please help me decide how to ethically consume books now that I'm the owner of a brand shiny new Kindle.
comment posted at 8:29 PM on Dec-14-14

Can you tell me about your experience with shared or "communal" tables at restaurants or coffee shops? Where are they common? Can you point me to any research, analysis, or good commentary about them?
comment posted at 6:29 PM on Dec-14-14

I know she has my best in mind but she is constantly asking me if everything is okay.
comment posted at 6:49 PM on Dec-12-14

Long story short - I'm getting married next September (Yey). I live in Canada but I'm originally from England so two of my Bridesmaids are English. One Bridesmaid, A, is my very best friend from growing up, we've known each other since we were 2. I travelled to England for her wedding a couple of years ago and there was never any question that she'd do the same for me.
comment posted at 10:17 AM on Dec-12-14

The stock answer to everyone who's posted an Ask about being stressed or anxious lately has been "Mindfulness! Meditation!" But, um, what does that mean, exactly? Please share anecdotes, techniques, references. What - exactly - did you do, and how did it help? Walk me through this like I'm five.
comment posted at 9:27 AM on Dec-12-14

Managing a Twitter account for a professional education/networking group: what do I need to know?
comment posted at 11:25 AM on Dec-11-14

We got these blue plastic discs at work as part of a promotional campaign, but no one here seems to know what the item does, exactly. Googling has failed us. Has anyone seen one of these before? What does it do, besides stump people? (You can see the full extent of its functionality in the linked video.)
comment posted at 1:35 PM on Dec-11-14

I said something that offended people. I will not say it again, but would like to know why it's so offensive.
comment posted at 12:28 PM on Dec-10-14

Last night after the final trampling of my boundaries, I asked my husband to please move out. I'm sort of adrift now. Hope me.
comment posted at 5:30 PM on Dec-9-14

I need a dish for a potluck for work lunch on Thursday. I don't do potlucks well anyway, but now I have to figure out a dish that I can cook (or assemble) Wednesday night, bring in to work at 8am on Thursday, and serve for Thursday lunch. We have refrigerators but no stove or oven. There is a small microwave. I will not have time to go out and get something during the day before the lunch, as the potluck is following a mandatory meeting, and most stores will be closed that morning before I get to work.
comment posted at 1:58 PM on Dec-9-14

I'll be spending my second Christmas with my boyfriend's lovely family, and want to get them a gift they'll enjoy. Unfortunately, I don't know them that well, and feel pretty stuck. Deets inside.
comment posted at 2:06 PM on Dec-9-14

So, I lost a fair chunk of weight in the past year, which has had many beneficial effects, to be sure. Unexpected downside: I have turned into a complete wuss about cold. After years of considering myself innately warm-blooded, merrily running around hatless through all the winter months, I am now dreading going outdoors even to grab a quart of milk. This will not do. Fellow cold-wusses, how do I adapt? What are your best tips, tricks and products for dealing with the cold? Or alternatively, toughening myself up so it doesn't bother me so much?
comment posted at 8:33 AM on Dec-9-14

The Ferguson incident has of course sparked many reactions from people. Facebook makes it easy for people to share images, articles, and thoughts related to their views on the incident. One of my best friends (since middle school) has been sharing things lately that skirt the boundaries of tolerance for me. I'm uncertain as to the best way to respond to her, or if I should even respond at all. Her latest share on Facebook was offensive to me, and shows a lack of sensitivity and understanding of the real things black Americans are fighting for.
comment posted at 1:27 PM on Dec-8-14

Bean soup is convenient for lunch and winter-friendly and healthy and all, but in reality most of them are mind-numbingly boring. (Sorry, Bean Soup.) I am looking for very lively, assertive, strongly-flavored bean soups.
comment posted at 9:53 AM on Dec-8-14

Anxiety runs in my family. I'm watching how much it affects my mom and I want to keep on challenging myself to take risks so that I never get so afraid that it limits me from doing stuff and enjoying life. How do I do this?
comment posted at 10:06 AM on Dec-8-14

I need to upload several GB of data fast while on travel to New York. How do I pull this off?
comment posted at 7:46 PM on Dec-7-14

I just re-watched the 2002 film Insomnia. It was (still) great, and now I'd like recommendations for more things like it.
comment posted at 7:47 AM on Dec-6-14

Over the past six months, I've got into this consistent habit of waking up much too early. Like from 4 to 5am. That would be fine except I go to bed around 12 or 1. Is this a big problem?
comment posted at 7:06 AM on Dec-6-14

My grandfather is in a long-term care hospital after multiple strokes. He's been there about a year, and this past week he was switched to (or from) level 3 palliative care to something where all the medical care he gets is pain relief. I don't really understand what this means, other than he's no longer getting antibiotics. Wouldn't that cause pain?
comment posted at 8:52 AM on Dec-4-14

I leased my car in Missouri (I am in Kansas). The dealer put a 30 day Missouri dealer tag on the car. It has just expired, as I lease, the dealer must do the initial registration and give me my actual license plate. Since I live in Kansas, it must be registered in Kansas, according to the dealer. However, Kansas is backed up on registrations. To combat this they issue 60 day dealer tags. The dealer says since I'm registering in Kansas, I have 60 days to register regardless of what my expired Missouri tags say. I think this is not true and I need valid tags to drive, what's the right answer?
comment posted at 12:43 PM on Dec-3-14

For a couple chapters of a book I'm writing, I could choose to adapt short stories that I already released under a Creative Commons license. Even with the adapted chapters, the book would be 95% new material. What are the implications of mixing the new material with the CC material?
comment posted at 7:47 PM on Dec-2-14

What are the best history (non-fiction) books concerned with the Oregon Territory, the Pacific Northwest, Washington State, the Puget Sound region, or Seattle?
comment posted at 7:10 PM on Dec-2-14

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 7:35 PM on Dec-2-14

I'm addicted to q-tips, have been for some time, and think it's beginning to cause some issues. Please help me quit using q-tips (it isn't that easy!).
comment posted at 6:46 PM on Dec-2-14

I need help with gmail functionality. I need to figure out how many(ish) extra hours I generally work. I think an easy way to capture part of this is to check out the volume of email sent outside of my working hours. Is there a reasonably easy way to do this?
comment posted at 6:10 PM on Dec-1-14

So my husband has suggested that for Christmas, he'd love to have the original sketch art from a comic book. Problem is, I have no clue where to find that sort of thing. Help?
comment posted at 6:16 PM on Dec-1-14

I am in California. Yesterday while stopped at a red light I was hit from behind. The visible damage on both cars is minimal and no one was hurt, but it was still a jarring crash. The person who hit me is insured but does not want me to make a claim and has offered to pay for my inspection and repairs out of pocket. Is there any reason that I should not make a claim in this situation?
comment posted at 11:33 AM on Nov-30-14

Looking for advice on how to have a peaceful couple of days with family members with whom I have unresolved issues.
comment posted at 10:18 AM on Nov-30-14

Hey everyone. For awhile now I have been living with aural fullness, meaning it feels like my ears are clogged but they are not. Not sure if my actual ability to hear has gone down, though, as I went to two audiologists and both say that my hearing is ok, though my right ear had trouble with certain frequencies I seem to remember that as a child I had alot of hearing infections if that means anything. I also have a case of tinnitus that can get intense at times. Ringing and stuff. I have read what I may be experiencing is called 'Aural Fullness'. Just a sense of fullness in the ears that can be caused by a long line of things. Does anyone know anything about this condition? I read that my whole issue might be a problem with my Eustachian tube, but if it was, wouldn't the audiologist notice that? I know I am not imagining this. I just want it to get better.
comment posted at 8:00 PM on Nov-29-14

I often obsess in my head about how many of X item I should buy at a time. What is your process for deciding this with maximum end satisfaction for any given category?
comment posted at 5:44 PM on Nov-29-14

I'm looking for a cool historic photo for a specific spot in my house. What are your favorite sources for that kind of thing?
comment posted at 7:52 PM on Nov-29-14

Employers verify a degree or get a transcript by contacting the prospective employee's school. Why isn't this procedure used in colleges and universities (instead of the onus being placed on the student to provide the information)?
comment posted at 10:09 AM on Nov-29-14

After spending more time crawling pubs and attending street fairs, I've discovered some very good local music that I might not have heard about otherwise. Usually, the most press they get is a small blurb in a local community events paper, and you generally only hear about them through word of mouth. I'd love to find less-famous musicians in other cities who deserve some love. Who are your favourite local bands? Can you link to one or two of their tracks?
comment posted at 8:48 AM on Nov-29-14

I aspire to be a woman who knows how to take care of a car. Where do I begin?
comment posted at 10:06 AM on Nov-29-14

I'm looking for media (books mostly) related to technical histories of engineering projects.
comment posted at 4:23 PM on Nov-28-14

Could my anxiety/stress be manifesting itself with all of these distressing physical symptoms?
comment posted at 4:35 PM on Nov-28-14

This may be a long shot, but can anyone recommend someone who can transfer VHS video to DVD in Bucharest, Romania?
comment posted at 12:52 PM on Nov-27-14

Specifically if you are in a serious relationship with someone else. I'm sure this varies among couples and the best thing is probably just to talk to each other openly...but before I bring it up with my boyfriend, I wanted to get some unbiased advice to make sure I'm not stepping across a line because I do feel weird about it.
comment posted at 8:14 AM on Nov-26-14

I've received a "Performance Improvement Plan" due to poor output and communication problems. This is almost entirely due to issues in my personal life that are resolving themselves. However, at most companies (probably including mine), a PIP is basically a way to build a paper trail before firing someone. While I'm going to work as hard as I can to improve performance, this is probably the time to start looking for other jobs. What is ethical for me to tell interviewers about why I'm leaving my current position? There are plenty of things I can cite that I don't like about this job, but none of them would normally be enough for me to quit.
comment posted at 7:16 PM on Nov-25-14

I want to purchase a small memorial at Pike Place Market for two relatives who have died recently but I'm severely limited in character space. Please help me choose a message.
comment posted at 1:54 PM on Nov-25-14

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