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Where should we go for summer sales in London next week?

We live outside the UK. We're going to be in London from this Sunday to Wednesday. We want to take advantage of the sales without wasting time that could be better used sightseeing. Are the sales still on in the places we want to shop? Is Oxford Street as good as anywhere for our purposes? [more inside]
posted by Busy Old Fool on Jul 14, 2016 - 7 answers

How to do myself justice on the MENSA IQ test?

After very good results on some Internet pop quizzes, including MENSA's own, I am sitting a supervised MENSA entrance exam/ IQ test in Glasgow in about a month. I know it's not possible to increase one's IQ by a huge amount simply by prepping, but do any members here (or anyone else) have tips for passing or at least getting the best score possible? Any recommended books or online resources? On one hand it's not a big deal but on the other hand it might be a fun learning challenge just to see what my IQ really is. I am putting this question in the "Work" category here because meeting other people at MENSA gatherings, if it turned out I was bright enough to get in, would be hugely inspiring for me. Also it wouldn't hurt to have it on my CV, it might intrigue someone, despite the old adage "no one likes a smart ass" :) [more inside]
posted by AuroraSky on Jul 14, 2016 - 32 answers

How to determine if a major remodel is worth it?

We've lived in our house for about a year and are trying to prioritize what projects need done. The kitchen and bath are in major need of a remodel but I'm not sure how to prioritize this with everything else. The other factor is we are not sure how long we are going to stay in the house - it could be 30 years, it could be 5. [more inside]
posted by lpcxa0 on Jul 13, 2016 - 8 answers

Help me identify this mysterious pendant with unknown inscription

We found this pendant in my grandparents' house when clearing it. But no one can work out what it is / what it means, or what the inscription signifies. [more inside]
posted by Hadrian on Jul 13, 2016 - 32 answers

Typical Love Story With Twist: Vegetarian Meets Bacon

I am fully aware that this is an obnoxious First-World problem, and yet... I've been an ethical vegetarian for over 30 years. I've felt that I want no part in farming or killing animals and I never wanted to eat them. Anyway, yesterday I accidentally ate bacon. I now love bacon and want to eat more bacon. My question SPECIFICALLY for people who didn't eat meat for ethical reasons but then started is how did you make it okay in your heart? [more inside]
posted by yes I said yes I will Yes on Jul 13, 2016 - 35 answers

What should I do for a week in Amsterdam?

I'll be in Amsterdam for a week in October. I like eating, drinking, and old things. What should I be sure to not miss? [more inside]
posted by Ducks or monkeys on Jul 13, 2016 - 13 answers

How to write a successful appeal argument (university expulsion, IN)

Family member was expelled from their university over a (BS) claim of misconduct. Is there a template to use or any recommendations on how to outline their statement to the panel? [more inside]
posted by heavyp08 on Jul 13, 2016 - 12 answers

Can I have a gun?

With the recent events in Dallas, there's been renewed talks about gun control vs. second amendment freedom etc etc. So that got me wondering: in which US State could I, as a foreign passport holder on a tourist visa (and therefore not a resident), just walk into a store and buy a gun without any question asked? Or is it not that simple? I'm looking for specific states where the legislation makes gun purchase as easy as is being reported in the media.
posted by Kwadeng on Jul 13, 2016 - 9 answers

Insects that don't eat, how do they make more insects?

Some insects live short lives and don't eat or even have mouths. How do they breed? Wouldn't you run out of insects eventually if there's no input into the system of insect breeding as a whole? If I built and set free autonomous robots programmed to "breed" by assembling new robots out of each other, and they built other robots without picking up any spare parts or materials, wouldn't I eventually run out of functioning robots? What am I missing that this is so confusing? There has to be a logical answer to this.
posted by blnkfrnk on Jul 12, 2016 - 9 answers

Please help me find a dead pop culture art site

I am looking for an old website (at least 10 years old) that did weekly art challenges for members only. [more inside]
posted by dogmom on Jul 12, 2016 - 1 answer

Handbrake defaults to Full Screen/TV vs Widescreen on single DVD rip

I only run into this once in a while. Some older or cheaper DVDs that have both Full Screen and Widescreen on one dvd will default to ripping the Full Screen. It isn't often but am not sure if my setting is off. [more inside]
posted by chicaboom on Jul 12, 2016 - 3 answers

Non mainstream eating around Santa Monica

Hi all. As I've mentioned, I'm taking my now 18-yo daughter to Los Angeles in September. We have flights and a booking at the Hotel California (heaven help me), and the next stage in planning is upon us. Laura wants some recommendations for "non-mainstream" places to eat around the general areas of Venice and Santa Monica. [more inside]
posted by Logophiliac on Jul 12, 2016 - 21 answers

Mental Health and Addiction Rounds - Halp me Plan

Does anyone know of any North American Psychologists or Psychiatrists doing any work on how patients are treated differently, dependent on gender? [more inside]
posted by Dressed to Kill on Jul 12, 2016 - 10 answers

ID short story about a group of kids who came back from a fantasy world?

I am trying to locate a short story I read sometime in the last few (1-3) years. I read it online, and it was about a group of kids, now older (20s?), set after they had done the trope thing of going into the woods, winding up in a fantasy world, saving the world, and then coming back to ours a short time later our-time, but months later in their lives. [more inside]
posted by fings on Jul 12, 2016 - 4 answers

Please help me select quality bed linens

My wonderful partner has requested “something for the home” for his upcoming birthday, and since we haven’t had new sheets in ages, I’m going to be getting new pillows and sheets for our queen-size bed. Trouble is, I don’t know how to get what we most like. Details within. [more inside]
posted by Short Attention Sp on Jul 11, 2016 - 13 answers

Visiting relatives who have guns when you have a toddler

Extended family that I visit (I'm in Canada) and stay with a few times a year have started the application for a "pistol permit" in New York state. I have a toddler who's never met a button that he didn't press or a latch he didn't fiddle with. I know it's unlikely a gun would be accessible during a visit but I've seen the statistics. My gut reaction is to not visit anyone who has a gun (maybe having one locked in a gun safe would be ok) but I don't know if that is excessive. They are buying the gun "for protection" so I am assuming it will be carried and I want to get a handle on my feelings before I discuss it with them. Have you been in this situation? How did you manage it?
posted by betsybetsy on Jul 11, 2016 - 30 answers

WordPress Ecommerce solution for a small shop?

I am helping redesign a website. We will be moving it to a WordPress platform. The site needs some kind of simple shopping cart system for selling real world goods. What are the best options, both for cost as well as ease of use? [more inside]
posted by jammy on Jul 11, 2016 - 7 answers

Alarm recommendation requested!

I am the world's heaviest sleeper, while my housemate is the world's lightest. I need an alarm that will wake me up, but not him. [more inside]
posted by Space Kitty on Jul 11, 2016 - 20 answers

Help me save my new office from its pea soup walls

I'm moving to a new office at work, from a rat-maze cubicle-farm cube in a room with very tall ceilings and surrounded by windows to an office with a door in the basement. I don't know why, but the occupants of the suite of offices painted all of their walls green. I strongly dislike the particular shade of green chosen, but there's no money to repaint right now. What can I do to make the office more palatable for me? [more inside]
posted by ashirys on Jul 11, 2016 - 9 answers

Discontinued hairspray! Need replacement.

My wife and I both used Pantene Flexible Hold #1 hairspray for many years. We liked it because it was unscented (at least as unscented as these products can be) and had very little 'glue' (in that it was level 1 hold out of 4 levels). Now that it has been discontinued, I'm hoping you guys can offer an alternative spray with those qualities. We don't want hair helmets or bees buzzing around our heads! Thanks in advance for your suggestions!
posted by Don_K on Jul 11, 2016 - 3 answers

Mystery pink flower

I planted some seeds directly in my garden but what has come up is not what I sowed! Any idea what it is please? I'm in the UK. [more inside]
posted by KateViolet on Jul 11, 2016 - 3 answers

Austin work trip in late August--transit questions

I'm applying for permission to attend a training workshop in Austin, TX, from Aug. 21-25, and I have some transit questions for Austinites!: [more inside]
posted by theatro on Jul 11, 2016 - 7 answers

Where are Series 1 & 2 of Endeavour?

I have a recurring recording for Masterpiece Mystery on my DVR, and a few weeks ago I was suddenly seeing Endeavour in the queue. This is great because I found I like it a great deal. However, it is series 3, and I never saw the first two series. I went to my AppleTV to see if I could find the first two series there but I didn't see them. So, how can I (legally) view the first two series? [more inside]
posted by terrapin on Jul 11, 2016 - 7 answers

What's the logic behind not letting people edit/delete their comments?

I just learned that Wordpress does not let you edit/delete your own comments in others' blogs. Why is this? [more inside]
posted by eisenl on Jul 10, 2016 - 8 answers

Snorkling Recommendations for Great Barrier Reef

We're seeking recommendations on snorkeling locations and outfitters/tours on the Great Barrier Reef, north of Cairns. [more inside]
posted by Mngo on Jul 10, 2016 - 13 answers

New Dog Walking Bag

I have a beloved bag that I carry with me when I walk my dogs - but it is showing its age - can you help me find a replacement? [more inside]
posted by hilaryjade on Jul 10, 2016 - 11 answers

The benefits of pre-natal vitamins are not over stated.

I started taking pre-natal vitamins about two months ago in preparation for a (hopeful!) pregnancy. The side benefit of thicker, more luxurious hair is DEFINITELY happening. Except, I have PCOS so I already have more hair than I want and the "benefit" is affecting a lot more than the hair on top of my head. Please PLEASE tell me that this will stop when I stop taking the vitamins. PLEASE.
posted by magnetsphere on Jul 10, 2016 - 4 answers

Is the cost of a move to a cheaper apartment worth it to pay less rent?

Is moving worth it to save $ on rent or should we stay put and try to make it work? [more inside]
posted by ShadePlant on Jul 10, 2016 - 27 answers

Which stories, novels, or non-fiction always jump-start your writing?

Seeking examples or lists of writing that have inspired writers to write. Not "I read Orlando and wanted to be a writer," but novels, stories, or non-fiction that, when read, inspire one immediately to write, either on a one-time or a repeated basis. I write regularly; I'd like to have a shelf by my desk that I dip into more or less randomly before writing to prime the pump. While I love many books or stories, I rarely remember the ones that make me want to write.
posted by cupcakeninja on Jul 10, 2016 - 10 answers

My number will not work on Sprint/CDMA?

I recently switched from Verizon (CDMA) with a Moto-X to Ting (T-Mobile/GSM) with a Nexus 5. [more inside]
posted by falsedmitri on Jul 9, 2016 - 11 answers

Best LGBT-related charities/nonprofits?

Two gay friends are getting married (finally! yippee!) and have requested no presents. Lots of us (the buddies, including the wedding party) want to respond by making donations to organizations that have supported marriage equality and other LGBT issues. Suggestions? [more inside]
posted by BlahLaLa on Jul 9, 2016 - 14 answers

Plugging a U.S.-U.K. converter into U.K.-EU

If I have an American laptop with a 60W power adapter, and I'm in Europe, and the only thing I have with me is a U.S.-U.K. plug adapter -- is it O.K. to plug that into a U.K.-E.U. one? [more inside]
posted by johngoren on Jul 9, 2016 - 10 answers

Backfired: The Briefing

I watched this Clinton ad today that used footage from James Comey's testimony to Congress yesterday. How long did this take to make? There aren't many edits, or anything, but it's professionally put together and very concisely argued. I'm just curious, from conception to completion, how many person hours would something like this take?
posted by OmieWise on Jul 8, 2016 - 5 answers

How to counter the "American abundance" argument.

We Americans have too much stuff in general. This is not a controversial statement. But when I say something like this to friends or acquaintances (and I phrase it non-accusatorially! Gently! Practically wrapped in cotton batting!) some people counter with, "Well, I'm just glad I live in a country that provides so much abundance, and where we have freedom of choice about what we own." [more inside]
posted by BostonTerrier on Jul 8, 2016 - 56 answers

Substantial Salads?

I need your best protein based salad recipes! Details below [more inside]
posted by deadwater on Jul 7, 2016 - 35 answers

Should I attend a Writer's Digest conference, or something else?

I just retired from teaching and am resuming writing. I had an agent and had two books published (F/SF, mainstream publisher) twenty years ago, but my agent died and I'm basically starting from scratch. The Writer's Digest conference in August in NYC looks okay. Is it worth going? Or should I do something else first? [more inside]
posted by Peach on Jul 7, 2016 - 7 answers

How to sign off a card to an elder in French

I'm writing a birthday card to my grandmother in French (this is in Canada). In English I would just sign it "Love, sea change", but I'm not sure what the appropriate sign-off is in French--something that's loving and not too formal/distant, but also respectful enough for a 90 year old woman. [more inside]
posted by sea change on Jul 7, 2016 - 6 answers

To Boldly Go Where Many Have Gone Before!

I want a real career. After a decade of professional frittering, I'm finally coming into my own — I have deep focus and a desire to invest heavily in my future. What should I make of myself? [more inside]
posted by fritillary on Jul 7, 2016 - 11 answers

Teaching the visual language of user interfaces to novices

I'm looking for resources that explicitly lay out what probably has a more technical name but what I think of as the generalized visual language of most modern UIs (especially as pertaining to web design). My goal is training computer-illiterate/technophobic people to be able to recognize common UI elements across multiple websites and applications. Specifics inside. [more inside]
posted by soren_lorensen on Jul 7, 2016 - 12 answers

Physical therapy for general improvement of health?

Is there a kind of physical therapist who can help me work through some general posture and muscle imbalance problems, and teach me exercises to avoid re-aggravating an old injury? How would I find one? [more inside]
posted by gilsonal on Jul 6, 2016 - 8 answers

Need AC solution for fairly open space in rental

I'm getting desperate for AC solutions to a fairly open first floor in our rental. I'm in my last month of pregnancy and I'm not excited for the next few weeks or to spend hot days at home with a new baby in August while I'm on maternity leave. Any advice would be greatly appreciated! [more inside]
posted by moshimosh on Jul 6, 2016 - 10 answers

Who are some famous human rights heroes?

I'm working on a fundraiser for an old Soviet dissident. I'm writing the fundraiser text, and I need suggestions for some human rights heroes I can compare him to, to put his achievements in a context that modern people can understand. [more inside]
posted by Cinnamon Bear on Jul 6, 2016 - 7 answers

Old Scandinavian b/w short about children and wild birds

I'm trying to get the title, and perhaps see (YouTube? - although I've searched), an old movie I used to show my elementary school classes in the mid-1970s. This is what I remember: black and white; 20-25 minutes long (not feature-length, I think); great photography; voice-over narration; Scandinavian of some sort; made in 1950s or 60s (possibly 40s); children's faces; forests, countryside; migrating birds (swans, storks, geese?); melancholy feeling. [more inside]
posted by feelinggood on Jul 6, 2016 - 3 answers

Help me record calls on iPhone

Freelancer business writer here. Recommend me the best app to record interviews using an iPhone. [more inside]
posted by LonnieK on Jul 6, 2016 - 13 answers

Can you identify this plant?

I've been gardening and hiking in the Pacific Northwest for a long time, but I have never seen this flower. It was growing on a moist, shady bank under oak trees. What is it?
posted by A. Davey on Jul 6, 2016 - 5 answers

Epoxy grout - yay or nay?

Is epoxy grout worth the extra effort and cost? [more inside]
posted by killy willy on Jul 6, 2016 - 7 answers

DC/Winchester to Jacksonville with kids

I'm heading off for my first semi-solo road trip with kids (and my mom) from either DC or Winchester to the Jacksonville/St. Augustine area of Florida. We are planning to take two days and stop every few hours for a break, preferably somewhere scenic and fun for the kids. [more inside]
posted by instamatic on Jul 6, 2016 - 5 answers

San Diego relaxing beachy vacation

I perused many of the San Diego questions but didn't feel that any fit the bill. I'm going to San Diego with my husband the last weekend (Thu-Sun) in July (weekend after Comic-con). We'd like to do relaxing beach-y (walking along or swimming, not surfing) or historical sight-seeing things, sit in nice coffeeshops and eat good food. More snowflakes inside. [more inside]
posted by permiechickie on Jul 5, 2016 - 18 answers

You okay,succulent?

One of my succulents(some type of aeonium,not sure) has developed weird black marks. Cannot figure out what they are. Green thumbs, please help! [more inside]
posted by InkDrinker on Jul 5, 2016 - 5 answers

Name that song, electro YouTube clip edition

MeFites, I need your help identifying the catchy song in this video. [more inside]
posted by henryaj on Jul 5, 2016 - 3 answers

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