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Seeking great subject-matter introductions for a voraciously curious kid

My ten-year old son wants to understand everything. He is a voracious reader and doesn't confine himself to kids books. He loves reading the newspaper (NYTimes, Boston Globe), fiction, and non-fiction books. He's old enough to really learn things by reading. Agatha Christie is fun, but he's ready for more than that. He's full of questions about society, politics, science, economics. I'd like to get him some books that will expand his mind, begin answering his questions, and show him how the world fits together. [more inside]
posted by alms on Jul 1, 2016 - 43 answers

What is this mystery play?

Yesterday, I ran across the proverb "Great cry and little wool, as the devil said when he sheared the hogs," along with the explanation that this came from "an old mystery play, David and Abigail, based on 1 Samuel." Where/when was this mystery play performed, and is its text available? [more inside]
posted by the sobsister on Jul 1, 2016 - 11 answers

Goody Bag Alternatives

Hello! My baby is having a birthday party, and I noticed that most kid birthday parties include goody bag giveaways filled with all kinds of crap. I don't really want to gather a bunch of cheap things, and instead would like to give one nice gift for kids to take home. Any suggestions? [more inside]
posted by lirael2008 on Jul 1, 2016 - 45 answers

Which neighbourhood in Victoria, British Columbia should we live in?

My partner and I are moving to Victoria from St. John's, Newfoundland. What neighbourhoods should we focus on to find an affordable stand-alone house to rent? [more inside]
posted by jardinier on Jun 30, 2016 - 6 answers

Baby daddy or baby granddaddy?

Can genetic links in this particular scenario be diferentiated? [more inside]
posted by Promethea on Jun 29, 2016 - 2 answers

Can you help me get in touch with Airbnb by phone or live chat asap?

There is no # or way to do this listed on their site, but I need to speak with someone. Please help if you can. [more inside]
posted by shrimpsmalls on Jun 29, 2016 - 4 answers

Help with creepy shower curtain liner

I am looking for a solution to keep the shower curtain liner in my claw foot tub from drafting in from the corner when the shower is in use and clinging rudely to the showerer. [more inside]
posted by *s on Jun 29, 2016 - 15 answers

Travelling to Norway from UK tomorrow: Least worst currency option?

Going to Oslo, Norway tomorrow at short notice - what is the least worst option for getting Norwegian currency with the current terrible state of British sterling? Airport exchange will not accept pre-orders for collection due to market instability, usually a reasonable deal. Should I just draw cash on my debit card when I get to Oslo?
posted by Hugobaron on Jun 29, 2016 - 6 answers

From A to B to Xe(la)

I am departing this Friday (three days!) for a three week trip to Guatemala, the first two weeks of which will be spent at Escuela Montana. Hooray! Then my dad got involved. Uh-oh! Many, many cautionary e-mails later, I am considering hiding under the bed for three weeks and just telling people I went to Guatemala. Esperanzame, Mefites! [more inside]
posted by theweasel on Jun 28, 2016 - 11 answers

How do I find a homeless person?

A homeless guy I've known for years had dropped off the grid. Help me make sure he's ok. [more inside]
posted by dortmunder on Jun 28, 2016 - 7 answers

How to repair damage to floor?

One of the casters in my bedframe fell off, and the bare metal of the bedframe gouged out a chunk from my floor (pictures here ). The floor isn't hardwood, it seems like some kind of engineered wood product with a veneer of grain on top. Any ideas of how I can repair this, or am I a dingus who just lost his security deposit?
posted by Maecenas on Jun 28, 2016 - 14 answers

Another Find-Me-A-Laptop-Bag, difficulty level: large laptop, not black.

SonR got a new laptop for college when the old hand-me-down he had been using died. So, we're looking for a new sturdy bag. Most bags for 15" laptops don't fit. We've looked at office/business stores (OfficeMax/Staples/uni bookstore) and perused old Asks but most bags are too small or feel/look flimsy. [more inside]
posted by jlkr on Jun 28, 2016 - 19 answers

DashClock Setup Issues On Samsung S7

I’m trying to set up DashClock on my spiffy new Samsung S7. I am running into trouble because the instructions say I’m supposed to make sure that “Enable Widgets” setting is enabled, but I can’t find that setting anywhere. All the instructions I find also say that I should swipe to the left, a plus sign will appear, and then I click on that to add DashClock to the lock screen. However, no matter how much I swipe to the left, no big plus sign appears. Thoughts?
posted by purplesludge on Jun 28, 2016 - 7 answers

New kitten seems stuck on eating adult cat food

I was unable to resist adopting a stray kitten from a co-worker. During the five days the co-worker had her, she was eating dry food meant for indoor adult cats. Now she won't switch. Is this a problem? [more inside]
posted by twoif on Jun 27, 2016 - 20 answers

San Francisco - list of accidents available?

Is there a sort of online police blotter for San Francisco where crimes/accidents are listed? Asking for a friend with a relative who was an alleged victim of a hit-and-run. [more inside]
posted by fraula on Jun 27, 2016 - 7 answers

"By hand" on a hand delivered thank you note

I have observed that when thank-you notes written by people from old money families are personally delivered, the annotation "By hand" is invariably added to the bottom right corner of the envelope. Can anyone educate me as to the origins of this practice?
posted by Turtles all the way down on Jun 26, 2016 - 4 answers

Project Tracking Software for a Beginner

What's a good piece of non-cloud software to track project completion for a small office? [more inside]
posted by Ndwright on Jun 26, 2016 - 9 answers

Uh... I don't get it

I don't understand last week's Oglaf comic [NSFW ads]. Do you? And can you explain it? Thanks!
posted by Too-Ticky on Jun 26, 2016 - 9 answers

How best to manage YouTube on an iPad for a child?

My four-year-old loves our iPad, but I don't want him to use it for nothing but YouTube videos. I'm also unhappy with some of the videos that Google considers to be OK for children. How can I manage his viewing, in terms of both time and content? [more inside]
posted by Zonker on Jun 26, 2016 - 15 answers

Nice Car. Brave choice of overalls.

What is the car that Justin Timberlake just finished washing in the background of the "Can't Stop The Feeling" video? (At abot 1:38s, dont know how to link sorry.)
posted by paulash on Jun 26, 2016 - 4 answers

I've had this song chorus in my head since 1990. Please send help.

I went to summer camp in northern Minnesota in the late 80s/early 90s. I was exposed to all kinds of awesome music there from kids all over the country, which was a huge big thing for young midwestern me. I remember sitting on a cold lake beach listening intently to a mix tape one of the older girls was playing, and there is a song that has stuck in my head ever since. The chorus is something like "So wave goodbye to everything you knew." I can still noodle it out on piano and guitar, but I can't identify the song. Please help. [more inside]
posted by erst on Jun 25, 2016 - 15 answers

Name that Tune!

Mr. Darling found a video on YouTube of a gentleman driving his 1959 Mercury and the perfect song is playing on the car's radio. The question is, what is the tune?
posted by tafetta, darling! on Jun 25, 2016 - 3 answers

Webcam recommendations

All I want to do is get a relatively cheap webcam for video unboxings that films beautifully and has auto-focus. Got a good rec for me? Bonus: tripod recs. [more inside]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Jun 25, 2016 - 11 answers

Best iOS Twitter app?

What's the best Twitter app for iOS these days? I have been using the official app but the increasing amount of ads is getting to me. One feature that it does well is let me hide thumbnails in tweets. Is there an alternate app that gives that option? I've seen Tweetbot and Twitterific mentioned, but don't have any experience with either. Thanks!
posted by cozenedindigo on Jun 25, 2016 - 10 answers

Reasonable quality drill bits for home use

What set of drill bits should I get for general purpose drilling needs around the house? I only use them occasionally and typical materials include sheetrock, wood, and plastic. [more inside]
posted by unus sum on Jun 25, 2016 - 9 answers

Sending framed photo to England w/o crazy shipping costs?

I want to send my dad, who lives in England, a framed photograph (preferably the stand-up-on-a-desk kind rather than the hang-on-the-wall kind). I'd like this photograph printed and framed by an online company that will then mail it to him. I thought I could pick a British company so as to avoid large shipping costs and a long delay, but the sites that I've tried won't accept payment from a credit card with an American billing address. Anyone know of a place that would accept an American credit card, or have clever alternatives?
posted by pie_seven on Jun 25, 2016 - 4 answers

Young adult with mild development delay has social needs I can't fulfill

Our daughter, age 23, has what might be called a mild developmental delay. She seems to relate to others like an 8 year old. She can do many things such as travelling alone, shopping and self-care. However she lacks good judgement and often, common sense. If someone befriends her, she'll be at their door several times a day, not respecting social boundries. [more inside]
posted by Coffeetyme on Jun 25, 2016 - 10 answers

Paw Patrol pre-school bribery in NYC

I bribed my two three and a half year old girls (identical twins - super cute) who are obsessed with Paw Patrol in the way that is hard to explain, that I was going to a country where they sold Paw Patrol everything - but now I can't find anything, help. [more inside]
posted by Augenblick on Jun 25, 2016 - 14 answers

Classical CD stores in Cologne/Bonn and Helsinki

Shops with a reasonable stock of classical music CDs in Cologne/Bonn and Helsinki? [more inside]
posted by Logophiliac on Jun 25, 2016 - 4 answers

Grabby baby meets mom with personal space issues

My 7.5 month old baby explores the world with his hands and feet... I don't like to be grabbed. Help. [more inside]
posted by toomanycurls on Jun 24, 2016 - 23 answers

Which flavor of awful should I buy: Norton Vs. McAfee edition

I am holding my CEO's credit card in my hand and cannot leave work without purchasing either Norton or McAfee today (thanks to our sales guy who keeps getting malware on his computer). Running a Lenovo Yoga 3 Pro-1370 with Windows 10 and Windows Defender, however, they are not convinced this is sufficient and are forcing me to buy/install one or the other today. Help? [more inside]
posted by Unicorn on the cob on Jun 24, 2016 - 20 answers

Which heat pump to get?

My heat pump (a 10 SEER packaged unit) is dead. It would cost at least $800 to fix it, assuming it's an easy fix. If not, it would either be unfixable (because no one makes the coils anymore), or cost well over $1k (if, for example, the reversing valve needs to be fixed/replaced). So I've had a few different quotes on new heat pumps, and can't decide what to do... Can anyone shed some light on the best route to take? [more inside]
posted by kethonna on Jun 24, 2016 - 7 answers

What are the best novels about the American West in the late 1800s?

My knowledge of books is sadly lacking on this question. I'm currently reading Twain's Roughing It and want more, preferably written in the last fifty years. Books about Oregon in full or in part are even better. [more inside]
posted by angrycat on Jun 24, 2016 - 16 answers

Songs to leave Europe to

So, presciently, my apocalypse themed birthday party is happening tomorrow (Saturday). Obviously, the mood has dimmed a bit with Brexit, so I want to put together a banging playlist to cheer my party guests up while we dance. [more inside]
posted by litereally on Jun 24, 2016 - 35 answers

Ate something bad - but what?

Often when I am feeling unwell due to eating something bad, I'll think back over what I've eaten, and one particular item will stick out and make me feel queasy. Is there any science or fact to this?
posted by gorcha on Jun 24, 2016 - 7 answers

Firefly LED light wand! I want to make one.

There is an LED toy that I want to recreate. It was the length of an umbrella, without the canopy, and looked like the person was being followed by a bobbing, waving band of fireflies. Details inside. [more inside]
posted by ananci on Jun 23, 2016 - 8 answers

Is it common to tip auto mechanics at holiday season?

I have found a great automotive repair shop. Honest, qualified mechanics and qualified office staff also, fair prices. I was surprised to get a call from them in December, wishing me a happy holiday. Now I'm wondering if that's code for "Hey, throw a few bucks our way since we've helped you out this year." [more inside]
posted by dancestoblue on Jun 23, 2016 - 13 answers

How do I purchase German stamps in the US?

I'd like to send a self addressed stamped envelope to Germany so that someone can mail something back to me in the US. [more inside]
posted by mrcrow on Jun 23, 2016 - 9 answers

Who do I address my query to?

So, I finally wrote a novel and I'm ready to start looking for an agent. I found this via twitter, and the agent looks like a good fit for my book. The submission guidelines at her agency say "Please mail submissions to the attention of ETHAN ELLENBERG". [more inside]
posted by notbuddha on Jun 23, 2016 - 5 answers

They don't ask, so I don't tell

I’m starting to think that I don’t know how to make small-talk properly, or else people tend to find me very boring. Or maybe both. Most of my conversations (aside from those with close friends or family members) revolve around the other person. Should I do something differently? [more inside]
posted by alex1965 on Jun 23, 2016 - 25 answers

Ubuntu mp3 sync script help needed

I am looking at writing a script for my Ubuntu system that synchronizes the latest (as in, last added) N (say, 10 or 20) files from one of my home folders with one of my Dropbox folders. Rsync seems to offer all but one needed feature. [more inside]
posted by circular on Jun 23, 2016 - 3 answers

How to handle an odd social phenomenon

Let's say I travel with my coworkers - let's call them Anne, Bryan, and Casey - to an offsite event near our office. How should I handle the awkward situation that sometimes plays out? Snowflakes inside. [more inside]
posted by schroedingersgirl on Jun 23, 2016 - 16 answers

Storing gasoline

I have a house. It has a walk-in basement, it does not have a garage. I have ~3 gallons of gasoline in appropriate containers. I think it's probably unwise to put this in my basement (with a water heater, electrical stuff, etc. not to mention the whole being effectively inside my house thing). Is storing it outside in a storage tote a good solution? Why or why not? [more inside]
posted by so fucking future on Jun 23, 2016 - 8 answers

What is this miniature stove and where can I buy it?

How can I identify the make/model and buy a duplicate of this miniature metal stove? It's at least 50 years old and has no brand markings. front top bottom Exact dimensions unknown but small enough to hold in one hand. The individual items (pans,bucket) are not attached and can be moved.
posted by Izner Myletze on Jun 23, 2016 - 7 answers

Recommend some Fitbit Flex bands that won't cause irritation

I love my Fitbit Flex but my skin doesn't love the band. Now that the resulting skin rash is almost healed I'd like to wear it again but would prefer a band made from a different material. [more inside]
posted by tommasz on Jun 23, 2016 - 6 answers

Hey Girl With Those Pretty Glasses, Where Did You Get Them?

Today I tried on this pair of glasses & I loved them. I did not love the price tag - can you help me find them (or a very similar style) within my budget? Difficulty level: UK but happy to internet shop. [more inside]
posted by kariebookish on Jun 22, 2016 - 8 answers

Landlord Problems

We gave the rental company 30 days notice, its now 2 days from the latest possible turn-in date for the keys without incurring a penalty. Here is the problem. My building manager, didn't show up for my first scheduled walk through or even return my calls asking for an explanation and a reschedule. I emailed and called and left (multiple) messages to the actual company, they have not deigned to respond. [more inside]
posted by deadwater on Jun 22, 2016 - 6 answers

Where to go in Los Angeles with my cat on Friday afternoon?

On Friday, my building will receive a much-welcome visit from The Exterminator. That means that I'll have to be out of my loft for about three hours with Garbo, Queen of All She Surveys. We can't really go to a neighbor's because the whole building is being treated, and so far none of my friends have offered to host a visit. Anyone have any suggestions about where I can go in LA with a pissed-off cat, preferably air-conditioned? [more inside]
posted by ljshapiro on Jun 22, 2016 - 9 answers

We are grateful, really grateful - we just had too much going on.

My baby is four months old, and due to a plethora of reasons, we never ended up sending out thank you cards after the baby shower. I know there's a period of time after which you just don't... but is it too late to send out thank birth announcements? What is the best way to show our appreciation for the gifts we were given for the baby months later? [more inside]
posted by Everydayville on Jun 22, 2016 - 42 answers

Help Identifying/Translating Turkish or Arabic? Writing on Artifact

I volunteer in an archaeological lab and sometimes people bring in things they find in their yards or on the beach. A woman brought in this spoon that she found buried in her yard. None of us here have any idea what it is other than it is a spoon. [more inside]
posted by jenjenc on Jun 22, 2016 - 4 answers

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