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Questions in the Society & Culture category.
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July 14

Cuenca, Riobamba, & Ambato, Ecuador
Can you compare/contrast the towns of Cuenca, Riobamba, & Ambato, Ecuador for me, from personal experience? [more inside]
posted by falsedmitri at 4:51 PM - 1 answers
Searching for Remote Trading Posts that are still Active.
Does anyone know of any remote, off the grid (USA or Canada) trading post(s) that are still operational?
posted by mm-ut at 4:35 PM - 9 answers

July 13

Thoughtful sci-fi recommendations
Looking for recommendations of sci-fi authors who are adept at some technology topics without compromising storytelling. More inside! [more inside]
posted by azazello at 11:50 PM - 24 answers

July 12

Economics and Magic
Has anyone ever attempted to realistically and fully work out what the economic and/or sociological implications of a world where dungeons and dragons or lord of the ring-style magic exists? For example, how it would impact the feudal system and so on. In any form, essay, fiction or otherwise.
posted by empath at 7:54 AM - 25 answers

July 11

Finding other Somervilles in North America
What neighborhoods or towns in the metro areas of NYC, DC, Toronto, Vancouver, SF, Seattle, and Portland are similar to Somerville, MA (north of Boston)? [more inside]
posted by acridrabbit at 11:08 AM - 24 answers

July 10

Best way to learn languages in interactive way?
What's the best way to learn languages (particularly French and German) through software or online which a) does NOT rely on long lectures, b) teaches sufficient grammar and vocabulary to read moderately complex books, and c) is interactive (if possible with a clear measure of progress) and d) self-paced?
posted by shivohum at 8:27 PM - 13 answers

Birthright Trip to Israel- to go or not to go?
The experience sounds amazing but it feels, for lack of a better word, sleazy to go while they're busy bombing Gaza. I want to go really badly but not if I have to pretend to love the IDF. [more inside]
posted by winterportage at 6:41 PM - 30 answers

What to do in life before getting pregnant in a year or two.
We're planning on trying for a baby in a year or two. I want a comprehensive list of goals for the time leading up to getting pregnant so that we're ready- psychologically, physically, and in every other way. I think my planned preparations fall under three categories- 1) getting our lives in order 2) enjoying the last of our unchained youth, and 3) practical stuff directly related to the baby. Please help me populate these lists. [more inside]
posted by cacao at 12:28 PM - 35 answers

July 9

Kid's book: little girl on vacation in Vermont who rides flying monsters
When I was a kid, I read a book about a little girl who was on vacation in the mountains of Vermont with her family. She became friends with flying monsters/dragons/dinosaurs. That's all that I remember!
posted by goethean at 8:02 AM - 2 answers

July 8

Help me brainstorm names for Science Fiction Convention / Festival
Looking for ideas for a name for science fiction convention. This event will cover the full spectrum of the science fiction genre, as well as real space and science stuff, and I'm hoping for a name that is both intriguing and fun. Ideas? [more inside]
posted by Unsomnambulist at 3:01 PM - 14 answers

Teenage nephew making anti-women comments
My 15 year old nephew has been saying some negative comments about women that make me a little concerned. How should I respond to him? Do I mention it to his parents? [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 7:03 AM - 32 answers

July 7

Do you have ideas for a low-budget bachelor party around LA in July?
A group of 10 of us would like to celebrate a dear friend of ours before he gets married, and we're meeting in the Los Angeles area for a bachelor party. We're all students, or recently graduated, and so we're trying to limit the cost to $500. What are some affordable activities that we can do around the LA area that would be super fun? Are there any notable activities close to the coast (Malibu, Santa Monica, Manhattan Beach, etc)? Thank you for all the help! [more inside]
posted by mahoganyslide at 11:08 AM - 13 answers

July 6

It's the new 20 or something like that, right?
Any inspirational written materials for a woman about to turn 30? [more inside]
posted by Enchanting Grasshopper at 12:58 PM - 7 answers

Most interesting science fiction/fantasy monetary or currency systems?
There are lots of interesting SF&F economic systems that are without money -- post-scarcity AI-nano cornucopias, magic subsistence economies, etc. For those who imagine worlds that still have money, though, what are the most interesting speculative monetary/currency/financial systems? (Please feel free to mention the obvious-to-you, as I've got big gaps in my SF&F reading and watching.) Thanks! [more inside]
posted by deathmarch to epistemic closure at 9:22 AM - 18 answers

July 1

How many books has the average person read?
I'd be interested to know how many books the average person has read by the following ages: 21, 30, 40, 60? [more inside]
posted by Musashi Daryl at 10:49 PM - 9 answers

Examples of memorable performances from American Idol, Shark Tank, etc.?
I'm trying to put together a set of performances from various reality/contest shows (e.g., American Idol, Shark Tank) that provide good examples of the following four scenarios: 1. Contestant appears very confident/proud, performs very well. 2. Contestant appears very confident/proud, performs very poorly. 3. Contestant appears very nervous/embarrassed, performs very well. 4. Contestant appears very nervous/embarrassed, performs very poorly. I'm very grateful for any and all suggestions. Thanks!
posted by ChopperDave at 5:25 AM - 16 answers

June 30

How can I help rural women who want to obtain an abortion?
I live in a rural place, the nearest Planned Parenthood is far away and hard to access if you're poor and/or without a car. I want to help women in my area get to the clinic if that's what they need. How can I do this? [more inside]
posted by blue_bicycle at 4:59 PM - 13 answers

Gather round, OKC profile critics...
I know the topic of OKCupid profile critiques is polarizing. Those who enjoy picking apart profiles and judging photos, please bring your honesty and step on up. [more inside]
posted by justonegirl at 11:42 AM - 32 answers

June 29

Finding my GGG grandfather
I'm visiting Scotland for a week in July, and I thought it might be fun to lookup some of my Scottish ancestors. We know that the family lived in New Cathcart (parish?) in the 1840's, which appears to now be a part of Glasgow. We also know my GGG grandfather died sometime between 1847 - 1849, in Cathcart, but it's not clear exactly when he died or where he's buried. Would I be wasting an hour or two trying to find it? [more inside]
posted by sbutler at 7:13 PM - 4 answers

Businesses in New York that have been around for over 100 years
I'd like to compile a list of businesses in New York City—starting with Manhattan—that have been around for 100 years or more. I'd also like to include places the public can visit that aren't "businesses" per se. I'm guessing this information is publicly available, but I don't know where to start. Any guidance would be extremely helpful. Thanks!
posted by context adventure at 3:45 PM - 20 answers

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