April 2020 Archives

April 30

Mother's Day gift ideas for a special person

Any great Mother’s Day gift ideas for my wife? She's a Sondheim fan who likes to play percussion but can’t with her usual group, though she could play piano. She enjoys peanut butter eggs and cherry Coke zero, but doesn’t drink much in the way of alcoholic beverages. [more inside]
posted by wnissen at 10:30 PM PST - 8 comments

Infrastructure Access Point aka

I've noticed *things* in English seem to be getting a technological inflation. Manhole Cover becomes Infrastructure Access Point. Register becomes Point Of Sale. I'm not sure this is an actual trend but if so, I'm curious if other languages are using more complex names as well.
posted by rebent at 9:19 PM PST - 12 comments

I want to buy comics

Comics and graphic novels from the last 10 years or so you've loved? I'm omnivorous - from the weird to the mainstream: If you think this is a good comic because of the story, the writing, the art, the themes, whatever, lay it on me. I am not very interested in horror or extreme violence but I could be open if for some reason you think the comic in question is exceptionally well done. Restriction is looking for relatively recent works, and not really into buying floppies - I want books. Happy to buy directly from creators/small presses or get curbside pickup from one of our local comic shops.
posted by latkes at 8:40 PM PST - 24 comments

Recs for hiking trail in/near PDX with best space for social distancing

Hi, that's the whole question! Any ideas on which trails might be best for having a good longer hike and are either more remote or have the best chance to appropriately socially distance oneself? Bonus if it's one of the ones that is still allowing parking. This is for one human to go on a solo hike. Thanks!
posted by fairlynearlyready at 8:19 PM PST - 6 comments

Should I seriously consider moving back home?

Given that there's a serious pandemic going on here, I'm seriously considering moving back home. However, there's a set of complicated factors (job, parcopresis, living situation, deaf, parents), so I'd like help walking through them. [more inside]
posted by dubious_dude at 8:02 PM PST - 18 comments

Consoling passages from poetry or drama or song?

What are your most-comforting passages from poetry, or drama, or lyrics? What words ease your mind when worry gnaws? [more inside]
posted by wenestvedt at 7:41 PM PST - 15 comments

3yo CBD oil

Would you expect CBD oil packaged in May 2017 to still be effective?
posted by HotToddy at 7:33 PM PST - 7 comments

When will the COVID-19 pandemic be over?

I am looking for numerical estimates of your current best evidence-based answer of when the COVID-19 pandemic will be over 1) in the United States and 2) worldwide. To more clearly define, "over" I would like to clarify that it would not be zero cases, but more to do with a return to pre-pandemic activity with no greater fear of excess mortality than that of influenza prior to the pandemic. [more inside]
posted by metasunday at 7:16 PM PST - 12 comments

Should we send our kids to daycare starting in June?

I'm curious to hear from others about how they plan handle daycare and summer camps from June 1st and beyond. [more inside]
posted by JPowers at 7:11 PM PST - 8 comments

Metafilter Magic: Name that Forgotten Game

In the last 3-5 years, I played a computer game that I don't recognize among the games in my Steam library and can't recall the name of. Hopefully ask.me recognizes it and can name it for me. A teenage girl takes a ferry to an island with her stepbrother and his friends (maybe her friends, maybe he's her brother, not her stepbrother?) for a traditional party on the beach. Mystery ensues--your transistor radio is a huge part of it. You explore and solve the mystery. Take the ferry home. There's lots of dialogue boxes and a variety of choices you can make about who splits off with whom for investigations and the like, which impact the end game. I am quite certain I learned about it on ask.me. Any suggestions? [more inside]
posted by crush at 5:51 PM PST - 3 comments

When will it be really, truly be safe again?

So this may be a question that no one can answer, but is there a reliable metric or statistic that I can refer to that will tell me when it is TRULY safe to resume normal life? [more inside]
posted by zeusianfog at 4:32 PM PST - 23 comments

Basic question about licensing for Adobe Sign

I'm interested in possibly purchasing Adobe Sign, but I can't figure out the licensing terms (in particular, the difference between "user" and "license"). [more inside]
posted by JD Sockinger at 4:23 PM PST - 4 comments

Can I eat this? Hummus edition

I have an unopened, still sealed with saran-wrap-like plastic under lid tub of hummus. To my chagrin, it reads "Best by 4/24/20." [more inside]
posted by intrepid_simpleton at 3:44 PM PST - 11 comments

Help me beautify this random (but meaningful) moving box

This is Lily, a cat. This is an empty box (technically an empty box inside another empty box) leftover from a recent move. The box isn't always empty though, sometimes there's a cat in there. The box originally served as a temporary redoubt after a traumatic move; everything is fine now but the box is still well used and all attempts to remove or replace it have been met with disapproval. So the box is now a permanent feature and I'm thinking about how to decorate/improve it to make it more aesthetically pleasing. I thought about papering it over, or building an outer shell of nicer wood, but I've love to get some inspiration for other ideas or designs. No specific style required - this room has furniture from antique to modern. How can I make this boring cardboard box into something that's moderately attractive without changing the fundamental shape? Links, advice and ideas are all welcome!
posted by Banky_Edwards at 3:17 PM PST - 11 comments

what, you egg?

The Hanged Man (NSFW) in this tarot deck is based off of Odin sacrificing his eye at Yggdrasil. why is there an egg? [more inside]
posted by gaybobbie at 3:01 PM PST - 3 comments

Laptop recommendation

Do I really need to know what I'm going to use my computer for before I buy it? Why can't I just get the most powerful computer in my budget? Budget and priorities inside: [more inside]
posted by stuart_s at 2:48 PM PST - 13 comments

Feet Slide Forward In Shoes, what is going on?

I have this frustrating problem where my feet tend to slide forward in my shoes and end up crunching my toes in the toe area and becoming uncomfortable to walk any distance. It's worse for my right foot than left but happens with both. I don't believe my feet are narrow and I think I have the right size - what the hell is going on?! I'm a woman's size 5.5, maybe 5. [more inside]
posted by [insert clever name here] at 2:17 PM PST - 8 comments

Less expensive mirrorless camera for video?

So what do you buy in 2020 if you want an inexpensive ILC that you're going to use primarily for video? [more inside]
posted by selfnoise at 2:01 PM PST - 5 comments

Question about Canada Post shipping to Colombia

Why doesn't it work? [more inside]
posted by Joan Rivers of Babylon at 1:48 PM PST - 2 comments

Nintendo Switch Online + Kids: privacy settings?

My young boys recently started playing Mario Kart with their friend via Nintendo Switch Online. Random people from the internet are joining their games and then sending Friend requests (almost one per session, which surprised me). How do I turn this off but still have my kids be able to connect with their real friends?
posted by cgs at 1:17 PM PST - 2 comments

A bed head-scratcher

Why are standard mattresses so short? As a life-long short person I'm used to a lot of newly manufactured furniture being too large, especially the height and depth of seating. But beds seem the opposite: I'm ok, but I can't imagine getting quality sleep if I was even an inch taller. [more inside]
posted by Text TK at 11:00 AM PST - 38 comments

Basic reliable fold-up treadmill in stock?

What is a basic reliable fold-up treadmill that is in stock right now? I have no interest in training routines, inclines, heart rate monitors, wifi connections, or anything like that. The only control or feature I want is to change the speed (as well as ability to fold up). [more inside]
posted by catquas at 10:30 AM PST - 4 comments

How do I set up recurring messages in Discord

I'd like to set Discord up to send messages at a preset time every week. Unfortunately, the MEE6 bot I use doesn't seem to have this capacity. Is there an easy solution for a non-programmer (I could edit some JavaScript, but that's about all)? [more inside]
posted by Gelatin at 10:00 AM PST - 3 comments

Babycakes temperature

When using a regular cake recipe but baking it in one of those novelty mini cake pans (like mini muffins but decorative), would you raise, lower or leave unchanged the oven temp?
posted by HotToddy at 9:20 AM PST - 6 comments

Why can't I drink any more?

I used to be a reasonably heavy binge drinker. Then I stopped drinking completely six years ago to reset my relationship with alcohol. In the last year I've felt like trying drinking again, but every time I've tried drinking even a small amount of alcohol I get a brutal three-week spell of depression afterwards. I'm looking for information (and anecdotes if you have them) about why this is happening and what (if anything) I can do about it. [more inside]
posted by terretu at 8:53 AM PST - 11 comments

Ironically, I Got Lost

A few weeks ago I signed up with an online mapmaking company - and I have COMPLETLEY forgotten what it's called. But there are some clues; maybe someone can help jog my memory? [more inside]
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 8:04 AM PST - 5 comments

bending 3/16" stainless steel rods

I have a 3/16" 304 stainless steel rod with an almost closed loop at the end. I want to bend it closed. Couldn't get it to bend with pliers, would a vice work? [more inside]
posted by skewed at 7:35 AM PST - 13 comments

Are protein powders bullshit?

Is there any benefit to protein powder for someone who is not actively body building? Are protein powders even effective, or safe? [more inside]
posted by JDHarper at 7:01 AM PST - 18 comments

Advice for video conferencing?

We want to have a meeting via internet with four or five people, MacBook and Windows machines and a variety of browsers. We've never done this before. Any advice is appreciated. Such as: What is the best platform for this? What problems may come up? How to lead/facilitate the meeting? Etc. — Thanks
posted by partner at 6:48 AM PST - 12 comments

Printer copier that isn't going to lock me into years of rip-offs?

I'm in the sad position of needing to own a home printer/copier, something I swore off of years ago. Are there any available new/refurbished now that A) are reasonably well-built; B) Aren't going to mean contending with years of ink replacement cartridge mafia tactics from the manufacturer?
posted by ryanshepard at 6:47 AM PST - 24 comments

Best adult toy site?

What's your favorite adult toy site? [more inside]
posted by cozenedindigo at 6:25 AM PST - 13 comments

Buying albums with Apple Music on Mac

This is a really dumb question, I hope, but please be gentle. I've been buying albums from iTunes for years. I want to continue doing so from Apple Music. I can't find how to do it on a Mac. So tell me how, please. [more inside]
posted by Logophiliac at 4:11 AM PST - 9 comments

Trying to find an adult version of a children's sweatshirt.

We recently purchased this sweatshirt for my daughter. After she was parading it around the house, my wife had mentioned that she wished they made an adult version of it for herself. My daughter has latched onto that idea and wants to make it a reality for the upcoming Mother's day. [more inside]
posted by wile e at 2:27 AM PST - 4 comments

Would you repair a leaky dishwasher in These Times?

My apartment’s dishwasher has sprung a leak underneath the tub. I hate dealing with the handyman at the best of times. Please help me decide whether to resign myself to hand washing dishes for the rest of the pandemic. [more inside]
posted by ceramicspaniel at 1:37 AM PST - 16 comments

April 29

Can I eat... Puffy cornbread mix?

Bob's Red Mill brand cornbread mix. Sold in a plastic bag. Unopened. Best by July 2019. Has been in the freezer for... 2 years? Took it out a few days ago and discovered the package was fully puffed up with air. How do I know if it is safe to eat? [more inside]
posted by rouftop at 11:00 PM PST - 7 comments

How does selling a house work?

I have been renting out a house to longterm tenants who have informed me they are vacating at the end of May. I want to be rid of this house as soon as possible but it needs work and I don't have a lot of cash on hand. I've never sold a house before. Where do I start? [more inside]
posted by possibilityleft at 9:15 PM PST - 14 comments

Infographic hell

Looking for resources and guidance on good design of infographics in printed reports/ PDFs. [more inside]
posted by tavegyl at 9:05 PM PST - 6 comments

Do banks really monitor ATMs for left cash?

I keep seeing oft repeated line that if someone is trying to deposit money or otherwise leaves money in the ATM, you're next in line and the person who left it is gone, that taking the money is stealing and the bank will track you down. I have several questions, 1. Is this really illegal or does this fall under abandoned cash? 2. Are there instances of banks really tracking down the person who took the cash? [more inside]
posted by geoff. at 7:22 PM PST - 15 comments

No party like a Zoom party?

My birthday is next month and I'd like to get at least a little enjoyment out of it. I live alone/am in an LDR so I can't celebrate with my partner or family this year. But, maybe it's a great opportunity to reconnect with friends in faraway places! What makes for a good Zoom (or other video chat platform) party? What makes one unpleasantly awkward?
posted by 4rtemis at 6:29 PM PST - 12 comments

An already reluctant learner and COVID-19 distance learning

So Taffeta Boy who was failing fourth grade at the beginning of the year managed to turn it around pretty well over the year and has recently been diagnosed with ADD. And then COVID-19 and distance learning hit. He is struggling (and so am I). [more inside]
posted by tafetta, darling! at 6:28 PM PST - 13 comments

your grandmother's carrot cake

Looking for a recipe for old-fashioned carrot cake. Carrot-flakes below. [more inside]
posted by Crystal Fox at 5:25 PM PST - 10 comments

Small band, large bust bralette

Looking for a unicorn bralette. Specifications within: [more inside]
posted by Grandysaur at 5:06 PM PST - 15 comments

Apple user seeks cloud file storage & image hosting from single service

I have 1 macOS laptop and 4 iOS devices. I want to read/write files from all devices to common drive. I also want to host images for my Dreamwidth blog. Currently paying for Dropbox but they no longer support rendering images in HTML. It’s possible to publish photos on iCloud as "public websites," but I don’t see where to get the photo’s link. macOS' and iOS' insistence on managing iCloud files in its own way confuses me a lot. Willing to pay for reliable, easy-to-use system.
posted by Jesse the K at 4:23 PM PST - 4 comments

Help me tame my knotty/naughty hair!

I am looking for suggestions on how to make my hair not so knotty. I would like to be able to run my fingers or brush through it without continually hitting snags. [more inside]
posted by nirblegee at 2:20 PM PST - 22 comments

Songs about authenticity & self acceptance

Can you suggest some songs about self-acceptance or authenticity that aren't too on the nose? [more inside]
posted by biscuits at 2:04 PM PST - 39 comments

Point and click games to play together remotely (for kids)

Mrs. Gefilte and I are looking to help out my sister-in-law with some child-minding (kids are 4 and 6) and I was wondering if anyone had suggestions for games that we can play online together, remotely. [more inside]
posted by greatgefilte at 1:21 PM PST - 6 comments

Dental insurance and wisdom tooth removal

My wisdom teeth are impacted and decaying. My appointment to consult with a surgeon was cancelled because of the pandemic, and now I have turned 26 and am no longer on my parents' dental insurance. All of the Marketplace insurance plans have 6 months waiting periods. Help? [more inside]
posted by brook horse at 12:51 PM PST - 11 comments

Take the cake

I need help with two more birthday cakes, particularly concepts/recipes/decoration ideas. Cake #1: Theme is nuclear (reaction?). Cake #2: Chocolate/peanut butter flavors. More details and challenges below. [more inside]
posted by papergirl at 11:52 AM PST - 21 comments

Best online form to capture commnity recipes?

I'm working with a colleague to collect recipes, stories, and photos to create a community cookbook for our clients. Since this is a side project, I don't want everything getting lost in email; I want to create a form they can fill out which will pull to a Google sheet or similar. I've used Typeform and Google forms for projects in the past; should I just use those? Is there something better? I'm especially wondering if there's a form that makes it easier for them to include photos.
posted by assenav at 11:38 AM PST - 1 comment

How do I help my spouse keep up our home internet setup after I die?

Like many folks here, I don't have a straight forward internet setup. I have a bunch of IOT devices, an extra linux box or two, game consoles and a router with satellites. I have done some minor documentation of usernames and passwords in a physical book, but it really doesn't tell the whole story. [more inside]
posted by sciatica at 11:24 AM PST - 10 comments

Plane Tickets on United; Event Cancelled; Next Steps?

I booked two round-trip first-class tickets directly through United Airlines on Jan. 06 2020, for domestic travel within the US, for a trip from July 01-07 2020. Total value: US$1573.60. The event we were flying to attend has been cancelled. The airline has not cancelled or rescheduled the flight. I need some advice on what to do next. [more inside]
posted by sourcequench at 9:30 AM PST - 17 comments

Book rec: Magic, female protagonist discovering her power

I've searched other Asks and have some leads, but haven't seen this exactly: can you recommend fiction with a female main character coming into her own via connecting with her magical power? (more details within) [more inside]
posted by profreader at 9:11 AM PST - 57 comments

ID this (smart?) wall switch?

I just moved into a new place with what appears to be a smart lightswitch. Naturally, no documentation/manuals are available. There doesn't appear to be any manufacturer info visible. Can anyone by chance ID it?
posted by entropicamericana at 8:11 AM PST - 9 comments

Interview about the narrowing of fame in music with time.

I have a vague memory of a radio/podcast interview. I'd love to find either the interview or whatever the guest wrote that prompted the interview. The guest was talking about the way in which our popular memory of music from more than a century ago tends to get pared down to a very small number of famous individuals. Perhaps badly paraphased, they said something like, "name a composer of marches. Now name a second one." They went on to ask what names from the late 20th century music world will be recognizable in a hundred years. I think they might have gone on to talk about things unrelated to music. [more inside]
posted by eotvos at 8:10 AM PST - 4 comments

Vegetarian cooking resources for kids

My kiddo doesn't eat much, and she wants to change that. She's expressed some interest in not eating much meat. I have no idea what I'm doing. Plea for help within. [more inside]
posted by cheese at 5:34 AM PST - 21 comments

It should be all rise, baby

Give me upbeat, pumped up songs that start with a bang and keep going from there.
posted by Cozybee at 4:18 AM PST - 58 comments

April 28

'I think I'm the only one here who's only been born once'

I recall, during the George W. Bush era, an anecdote in which an official looked around a meeting room and broke the ice by saying 'I think I'm the only one here who's only been born once'. Who said it? Was it a real person, or if not, whose joke am I thinking of?
posted by Fiasco da Gama at 8:25 PM PST - 1 comment

Where can I buy a print of this painting?

I discovered this painting in an AskMe thread earlier today, and I'm in love with it. I'd love to buy a print of it, but I can't seem to find anywhere selling it -- half an hour of googling has turned up only a single print on eBay for $350, which is a little out of my price range (sub-$100). Does anyone know any secret magical art print source I haven't been able to find?
posted by mekily at 8:00 PM PST - 3 comments

Help me give (anonymous wireless carrier) my money.

I want to order the new phone that's being released tonight, but my carrier game is weak. [more inside]
posted by DandyRandy at 6:43 PM PST - 2 comments

Chicken bone broth left out for three hours: Can I eat it?

I made bone broth by first boiling it, then cooking it in the crockpot for 24 hours. I poured it into a glass jar and left it to cool before putting it in the fridge so the jar wouldn't explode. About three hours later I remembered it. It was tightly covered and still warm. It's now in the fridge. Is it safe to eat?
posted by Beethoven's Sith at 5:03 PM PST - 16 comments

Hey, that's not funny...here.

Help me settle a debate with a friend: in the way that Russian culture is known for its dark humor and to the degree to which dark humor is acceptable there, are there any places that are the opposite and have a culturally low tolerance for dark humor? Anecdotes and academic studies welcome! [more inside]
posted by blerghamot at 4:14 PM PST - 20 comments

A dog unfriendly TV?

I'm looking for a TV that displays in such a way that my dog won't be able to understand the images and will hopefully just ignore it. [more inside]
posted by mmmmmmm at 3:49 PM PST - 13 comments

What is the non-English idiom meaning “A beautiful thing to see/tell”?

There are two non-English phrases that mean “a beautiful thing to see” and “a beautiful thing to tell”, I believe. They are rarely used in English but are established set phrases and I believe are in a Romance language or Latin. Does anyone know what these are?
posted by johnnydummkopf at 3:47 PM PST - 2 comments

Whats a cute board game to play with a 4 yr old over Facetime?

My little cousin calls me every night on facetime to play a board game together. What's a good game I can buy and send to her, that we can play together virtually? [more inside]
posted by silverstatue at 3:06 PM PST - 14 comments

Patio umbrellas for newbies

My free hand-me-down patio umbrella is wobbling in a scary way, so I am going to buy a new one for the first time in my life. I’m looking for a basic 9 foot version that tilts. I’ve read the relevant Wirecutter article and a million reviews on the Home Depot website, but I would love advice from MeFites who have opinions about patio umbrellas. Do you own a patio umbrella that you do not regret purchasing? Is it worth it to spring for a version with Sunbrella fabric? Have you ever tried to get one replaced under warranty and then cursed or loved the manufacturer for all eternity? My sunburn-free future self thanks you for your input.
posted by Maarika at 2:37 PM PST - 7 comments

Wild/Natural Yeast for White Sugar Sponge Cake (Bai Tang Gao)?

Can I use wild yeast, like from a sourdough starter, in non-bread applications, like white sugar sponge cake (bai tang gao)? [more inside]
posted by devrim at 2:11 PM PST - 4 comments

Tracking down a ~2000s blog post about accidentally designing a car

When I first started on the internet I remember reading a blog post by someone who explained their series of increasingly complex solutions for staying dry while walking in the rain, and ultimately realized they were designing a car. [more inside]
posted by dunstanorchard at 2:09 PM PST - 7 comments

Show Me the Tummies

I would like to see paintings and sculptures of women whose lower bellies protrude a little or a lot. Would prefer art created prior to the early 1900s. Please help me view this part of my own body in a different light.
posted by Kitchen Witch at 12:53 PM PST - 16 comments

Advice on Haldol (Haloperidol) withdrawal symptomes

A close relative was hospitalized for 2 months with a diagnosis of bipolar mania with psychosis. He was prescribed Haldol since atypicals didnt work. As he was discharged, he immediately stopped all meds. A week later, he has delusions of grandeur and possibly hallucinations. Also, he's very slow cognitively. Obviously, the assumption is the his illness is back. But, could it simply be withdrawal symptoms? I see Hallucinations, confusion and delusions listed as withdrawal symptoms and Return of psychosis as a separate entry in withdrawal symptoms. Is there any chance that he has these "withdrawal symptoms" go away and the original illness would not return? How long would these types of withdrawals last? (He has not told his doctor that he's off meds. I want to be sure that there's no chance of being OK and not being on meds before I notify the doctor.)
posted by kirsti at 12:50 PM PST - 12 comments

id ghostlouse bug

What is this white woodlouse looking bug? [more inside]
posted by signal at 11:50 AM PST - 3 comments

Theater-filter: a play with 6-8 characters and well-distributed dialog

Friends and I may do a "table read" of a play over zoom and we're trying to think of fun/interesting plays that have maybe 6-8 characters (I'm honestly not sure how many of us are up for this including me, a terrible actor) and dialog that isn't centered on one or two of them. I was kind of wondering about Travesties but then noticed a five-page monologue early on. (I haven't seen the play in 25 years but had a copy on my bookshelf.) Bonus challenge: I am just not up for Shakespeare. Too much to stumble over. I guess extra bonus points, though, for things that are in public domain and can be found online. I've gotten worse about favorite-ing responses but thanks for any ideas!
posted by less of course at 11:36 AM PST - 13 comments

Fitbit: a good solution for my mother with hearing loss?

My mother has partial hearing loss, which means that sometimes she doesn't hear her cellphone ring if it isn't right in front of her. Is a "fitness bracelet" a good solution for her, for the sole purpose of alerting her by vibrating on her wrist when she gets a call, SMS, or WhatsApp message? Do other people with hearing loss use a Fitbit (or the like) for this purpose? Or is there a better solution? [more inside]
posted by splitpeasoup at 11:28 AM PST - 18 comments

Dried morel disappointment

I’m sitting on a second mortgage’s worth of dried morels, and they... don’t really taste like much. Compared to say a dried porcini. I’ve tried them rehydrated and as powder, in dishes. Am I expecting too much or is there something different I should try?
posted by ftm at 11:06 AM PST - 6 comments

What temperature do I REALLY have to reheat food to for safety?

So I'm having trouble finding information on this other than from various countries' official food safety recommendations, which are notoriously over-cautious and would have us all eating steaks like hockey-pucks and pork chops like packing material if strictly followed. [more inside]
posted by Dext at 10:55 AM PST - 5 comments

Have you ever been paid (fairly) to answer market research questions?

I'm trying to help out-of-work people make some $$ by putting together a vetted list of market research firms that compensate their panel/respondents fairly (rather than big "panel farms" like SurveyJunkie who outsource their panel to other companies and pay their panel like crap). If you've had a good experience giving your opinions on products/brands/life, can you share the company's name and the (ballpark) compensation? I know it varies by person, but it's still helpful to know the range. [more inside]
posted by qzar at 10:22 AM PST - 18 comments

Seeking legit, mutually-agreeable Android monitoring app for partners

As a part of our recovering and rebuilding trust after my infidelity, my partner has asked me to install an app on my Android phone which allows my partner to monitor my calls, texts, and app usage. [more inside]
posted by phredgreen at 9:41 AM PST - 7 comments

WiFi's patchy- but I REALLY need WiFi today

I'm home for the first time post quarantine, and have discovered my WiFi's crashing regularly. I'm co-leading a large webinar over Zoom in 3.5 hours. What can I do before then to avoid crashing out during the webinar? [more inside]
posted by quiet coyote at 9:34 AM PST - 15 comments

Crafty, low-gear-required couples activities

Please help me brainstorm creative activities for my partner and I to do together that minimize buying new specialized equipment! [more inside]
posted by Alterscape at 9:19 AM PST - 15 comments

MacBook 2017 is not charging?

I have a refurbished 2017 MacBookPro and for some reason for the past three days it has not been able to charge properly. [more inside]
posted by RearWindow at 9:02 AM PST - 8 comments

Charging guide for newer iPhones?

3 dead old iPhone SE's in a month lead me to order a new iPhone SE 2020. However, the charging landscape has really changed. Is there a nice chart with wattages showing what my various charging options are and what kind of equipment I would need? [more inside]
posted by wnissen at 8:59 AM PST - 3 comments

Multiple Alexa audio devices, want multiple streams, multiple rooms.

We have several Amazon Alexa speakers capable of streaming music. I want to be able to be upstairs and stream some music. While my wife is upstairs with the baby - streaming baby lullabies. Later today I'll have the baby in a different room and she'll want to listen to music she wants. Oh yeah, the kids are upstairs and want to stream something else.. [more inside]
posted by filmgeek at 8:34 AM PST - 1 comment

removing vocal track from song

I have an audio file that has some vocals on it. I would like to remove those vocals. Is there a way to do so without destroying the file? [more inside]
posted by nayantara at 7:21 AM PST - 7 comments

Spice-y not spicy curry recipes

I would like recipes for curries using base spices, but without curry powder or chilli powder as an ingredient. Surprisingly hard to find. Do you have a tried and tested approach? [more inside]
posted by like_neon at 7:18 AM PST - 20 comments

How to ask for extended WFH when moving to a new city?

I have a white collar job that, like many, is entirely work-from-home during the pandemic. My family is planning on moving four hours away come summertime. How/when can I best ask if I can keep my job when moving? Snowflakes inside. [more inside]
posted by HeroZero at 6:44 AM PST - 14 comments

Pay upfront for a service to be delivered after Covid-19 goes away?

I'm a trans woman. I was booked in for laser facial hair removal just before Covid-19 hit and it was cancelled for obvious reasons. This is something essential for my day-to-day life that I'm going to have done as soon as it's safe to do so again, it's not something I'm going to decide I don't want. Earlier on, my laser clinic sent an email blast with a very tempting special offer of a significant financial saving - if I pay upfront now, and book when the clinics are reopened. Should I take it up? It's raising a red flag. [more inside]
posted by winterhill at 6:40 AM PST - 16 comments

Best practices for taking in a young relative who isn't independent

My wife's younger sister M, who's just turned 30, is leaving her boyfriend, needs a place to live, and has never been fully able to live on her own. We're 38, securely employed, with a spare room, and we're considering offering her a place with us temporarily. I'm not asking if we should do this. I'm interested in, I dunno, best practices? If you've done this and not regretted it, how did you approach it and what boundaries did you set? [more inside]
posted by nebulawindphone at 5:46 AM PST - 21 comments

What are some non-obvious ways that people WFH cause stress on others?

For example: more noise leaking through apartment walls during the day. [more inside]
posted by lucidium at 5:24 AM PST - 36 comments

April 27

Fancy Birthday At Home

My birthday is coming up. How do I "celebrate" it at home? Difficulty level: pain. [more inside]
posted by LoonyLovegood at 11:27 PM PST - 8 comments

Dance like no one is watching (and they aren't)

Something that helps me cultivate a positive mood is dancing around my apartment while doing chores. I'm looking for recommendations with an upbeat tempo and the kind of song that gets stuck in your head (in a good way). [more inside]
posted by pdxhiker at 9:54 PM PST - 17 comments

Sex ed website?

A few years ago there was a fairly popular sex education website written for a mostly female audience, made to help women understand a large variety of sexual topics, breaking them down into beginner friendly terms. I cannot remember what this website was called, or if it still exists. [more inside]
posted by crunchy potato at 7:39 PM PST - 3 comments

Encoding cross-writing in TEI

I'm working on a project to encode a handwritten diary using TEI (Text Encoding Initiative). A section of the diary is cross-written and for the life of me, I can't figure out how to encode it! [more inside]
posted by brushtailedphascogale at 6:27 PM PST - 5 comments

bipolar vs borderline

this has become my godzilla vs gamera. i'm bipolar, friend/coworker is borderline (not in therapy). how the crap do i make this work? [more inside]
posted by megan_magnolia at 6:00 PM PST - 7 comments

Graduation Gift for New PhD Moving Internationally

My kickass sister is finishing a PhD in cognitive psychology, then moving to Toronto. What should I get her as a graduation gift? [more inside]
posted by bassooner at 5:32 PM PST - 11 comments

Unsaveable day

I'd like to hear about books and movies where the heroes do not manage to save the day. [more inside]
posted by ubiquity at 4:24 PM PST - 68 comments

Explain this key! Samsung phone edition.

I use a Google sheet on a Samsung phone. When I enter a number into a number-formatted cell, it displays the number keypad shown here. To the right of the 9 key, there is a key (circled red) labeled with what looks like a decimal point and a minus sign. What does this key do?
posted by SemiSalt at 3:54 PM PST - 2 comments

looking for a mystery skirt, with birds!

At least a dozen years ago I saw a skirt on a woman passing by that was either a-line or pleated, beige or tan or khaki, and had red birds either printed or embroidered in a full circle around the hem of the skirt. I did not speak to her. I don't know who she is, and I never saw her again. Have you ever seen this skirt? I thought it might be H&M or Anthropologie, but have never seen anything like it either online, on ebay, etsy, Mercari, Poshmark, etc. Any help is much appreciated.
posted by 41swans at 3:54 PM PST - 6 comments

Please help me identify this MP3 player!

I'm shopping for a digital music player (no, I don't want to just use my smart phone) and I can't identify one photographed in this article. Help! [more inside]
posted by deathpanels at 3:45 PM PST - 2 comments

unobtrusive, even transparent, third-party chat?

A friend and I are watching tv, remote from each other, on tiny laptop screens. For Netflix, Netflix Party works great. But, for other streaming services, it's been hard to find an app that has a tiny, columnar, or transparent window footprint (to have visible while also having a video playing, as enlarged as possible). Does a chat app with a tiny, columnar, or transparent window footprint exist? [more inside]
posted by zeek321 at 3:34 PM PST - 2 comments

Short COVID-19 explainer video for person with dementia?

Can anyone recommend a video that touches on the main points - where it came from, how far it’s spread, that a lot of people have died, how dangerous it is, that seniors are extra vulnerable? Ideally from the BBC, CBC (or other well-known Canadian network), CNN, ABC, or NBC. Nitty gritty not needed, neither hygiene advice. Just something from an authoritative source to get the message across that it’s dangerous to go outside. [more inside]
posted by cotton dress sock at 3:15 PM PST - 8 comments

Who is this actress?

This has been bothering me for a year. [more inside]
posted by ihaveyourfoot at 2:51 PM PST - 4 comments

Is unemployment for a Sole Proprietor who is paid irregularly possible?

I am a Sole Proprietor LLC, and my am earning less because of the lockdown in NJ. Is it possible for me to get unemployment as a self employed person? [more inside]
posted by ridogi at 2:01 PM PST - 3 comments

Cooking for the lab during a Pandemic

My work is still open, as we are considered an essential service to the university. 1/3 of us are incredibly busy building and validating antibody testing, and the rest of us are coming in on different/odd shifts to continue our regular work. No one is really eating lunch, besides candy bars from the vending machine and all campus food near us is closed. I made cinnamon rolls last week, and that was really well received. I'd like to bring in more items, but, I don't want to just stick to my usual cookies and breads, so I'd like some recipe suggestions! [more inside]
posted by lizjohn at 1:52 PM PST - 17 comments

"Exercise" for health

My mother (65) lives in a place with a very strict shelter in place, and for many reasons (poor health, asthma), she is scared to get outside even for small walks in her neighborhood. What can she do in her smaller apartment to help keep her body moving? [more inside]
posted by something_witty at 1:36 PM PST - 11 comments

Is This Settlement For Me?

I received a $120 check from a class action lawsuit. Great! Except... I don't think I ever bought the product involved. Am I missing something? Can I still deposit the check? [more inside]
posted by gregoryg at 1:30 PM PST - 2 comments

Please tell me about maintaining a saltwater pool

We moved into a house last fall with an inground saltwater pool. I’ve never had a pool before and don’t know where to start with looking after it. I had a company close it just after we moved in, and they’re coming back next Monday to open it for the summer. However, due to lockdown and distancing they are not allowed to come back and do a planned training session with me to teach me how to maintain it, though they are being helpful over the phone. [more inside]
posted by valleys at 1:15 PM PST - 6 comments

Food Ingredient Secret Santa Ideas?

I'm looking for ideas for a cooking-based secret Santa gift, which can be delivered before this Saturday. Help me think of unexpected ingredients or gadgets! [more inside]
posted by soleiluna at 1:09 PM PST - 7 comments

How interchangeable are chili pastes?

I don't think I've ever used chili paste when cooking, but I'd like to try. I'm aiming to get a little heat in fairly simple dishes - noodles, say, or vegetables over rice. Which paste should I buy - and how interchangeable are they? [more inside]
posted by kristi at 1:02 PM PST - 12 comments

Fingerprint recognition-ing when gloved?

I previously helped my father set up fingerprint recognition on his Moto E4 Plus (Android 7.7.1). He told me today that he is able to unlock his phone using fingerprint recognition even when he has latex gloves on. Is this a flaw? Is there something else/a different feature he can pursue to assure the security of his phone? What gives?
posted by mcbeth at 12:51 PM PST - 4 comments

The logistics of being immortal?

Seeking books and other reading that deal with the realistic, day-to-day challenges/details of living more-or-less forever. [more inside]
posted by Thorzdad at 12:21 PM PST - 21 comments

Deck of cards with creative problem-solving prompts

Years ago I remember a deck of cards that had prompts on them for approaching a problem differently. This was a physical deck of cards you could buy, but there was also a fairly classy web page that would turn up random draws for the deck. [more inside]
posted by Lorc at 12:17 PM PST - 5 comments

How do I find a percentage of something?

I failed basic maths back in the day [more inside]
posted by fantasticness at 11:31 AM PST - 16 comments

Git client for a 10 year old?

I bought a web domain and set up a github pages site for my soon-to-be step nephew, who is 10. Next, I would like to set things up so he can edit the site himself. Is there a simplified git client that a kid this age could use? I could write some scripts and maybe even a little GUI myself, but then I'd have to maintain those as well :) I'm hoping there is an off-the-shelf client that will work for him.
posted by tom_r at 11:27 AM PST - 8 comments

Reading in bed: backmax or something else?

I really need a more ergonomic and comfortable way to position myself when I read (which I do in bed and also sitting on the floor with my back leaned against my bed frame.) Is a BackMax (set of contoured adjustable pillows that zip together) worth it for $160 or should I cobble together something similar from wedge pillows and elevated leg pillows? I don't just want a "husband pillow" - I want a more complete system that will be really comfortable and minimize strain.
posted by needs more cowbell at 9:48 AM PST - 5 comments

Minoxidil and pregnancy?

I'm thinking of starting using 5% minoxidil to see if it helps with my hair loss, but I've also read that it might not be safe to use it while pregnant or breastfeeding. [more inside]
posted by U.N.Owen at 9:32 AM PST - 8 comments

How can I sink a 7ft pole into the ground?

I have a shepherd's hook that I want to hang a bird feeder from. I'd like to sink it three or four feet into the ground but when I push down on goes in less than a foot. [more inside]
posted by KleenexMakesaVeryGoodHat at 9:03 AM PST - 24 comments

What flavours are missing in this recipe?

This shrimp, orzo and butternut squash dish came out really bland [more inside]
posted by winterportage at 8:49 AM PST - 26 comments

How to do copyright (for streaming performances)?

Can anyone point me towards a good guide for how to copyright-clear music, literary work (e.g. poems and/or book chapters read aloud) and still images for streaming concerts? My chorus has nice archival recordings of a few of our past concerts that we'd like to stream. I've done copyright clearance for printed material and CDs before, but that was a while ago and I know nothing about the rules around a one-time streaming event. [more inside]
posted by mskyle at 8:04 AM PST - 6 comments

Gotta dance - online

Looking for online beginner dance classes. Details below. [more inside]
posted by FencingGal at 7:41 AM PST - 8 comments

Poems about Parenthood and Babyhood...for Tomorrow.

I need a poem on parenting or infancy to read at my brand-spanking new niece's baby naming TOMORROW. There are specs below the cut. [more inside]
posted by jeszac at 6:56 AM PST - 5 comments

One weird trick for teaching remote classes.

To those teaching university classes via videoconferencing: what tips or techniques are working for you? [more inside]
posted by signal at 6:46 AM PST - 7 comments

Chatroulette, but for a private group

In a dream world of mine, there is a video chat option where a group of people could join a private chat roulette and get randomly paired with people within the group. I've googled around and haven't found anything, but maybe you know - or know of a work around with in one of the major video chat options?
posted by vividvoltage at 6:32 AM PST - 4 comments

Looking for an online collaborative video playlist tool

I’m looking for an online collaborative video playlist tool or app. [more inside]
posted by The Card Cheat at 5:46 AM PST - 3 comments

Harness training a rescue cat

We rescued a gorgeous boy last year, who's about 1.5-2 years old and was living wild in a garden. He's naturally skittish but has become very cuddly and gentle with us. We'd like to get him comfortable with a harness and leash so that we can all spend time in our small garden during the summer, but even though he's very food-motivated, I'm not sure we've been making progress. Have you done this successfully? [more inside]
posted by carbide at 4:11 AM PST - 7 comments

How was my weekend? Dreadful, you?

I have depression and anxiety and sometimes I struggle with it. How do I respond in a friendly and professional way with work colleagues when people ask me about my weekend, but I had a bad time? [more inside]
posted by mnfn at 3:50 AM PST - 35 comments

Having difficulties finding a mask, and other COVID-19 questions.

I'm having difficulties finding a mask, and my situation is a bit unique, given I have a half-grown ear, so can't use the common ear-strap masks. I tried T-shirts and a wool scarf, with difficulties. I also have a couple of questions relating to COVID-19. [more inside]
posted by dubious_dude at 3:14 AM PST - 28 comments

April 26

Who needs books?

My mother was a voracious reader. She passed away in 2018 but left a library of thousands of books; mysteries, science fiction, finance, health & fitness, etc., all in excellent condition. I found a note that she wrote that makes me think that she may have wanted to donate them to a library. [more inside]
posted by CollectiveMind at 11:18 PM PST - 12 comments

Baby's first foray into skincare

Help me figure out a basic skincare routine that isn't too expensive or too much work [more inside]
posted by Amy93 at 10:08 PM PST - 12 comments

Song ID?

This is a silly question but also one of askmetafilter’s most magical abilities: Help me find this song from the Little Fires Everywhere finale please! [more inside]
posted by sleepingwithcats at 9:10 PM PST - 4 comments

(When) Can I Eat This? Tofu edition

Last month, I bought 6 packs of tofu, that are all marked with "Best By 5/18/20". They are sealed in plastic and seem to be in good condition. There is no manufacturing date/any other date on the package. AskMe seems pretty alarmed by the prospect of eating *expired* tofu, but what does "Best By" mean? I'm planning out my meals for the next several weeks. Is May 18 the *last* day I should plan on eating the tofu, or do I have more leeway?
posted by rogerroger at 8:33 PM PST - 13 comments

Terrible quality video when using TV as an external monitor ....

I was hoping to use this Toshiba TV as a monitor for my 2013 vintage Mac Air, but the video output over HDMI is grainy and fuzzy and noisy. Help? [more inside]
posted by RandlePatrickMcMurphy at 8:28 PM PST - 7 comments

What technique from a life coach or self-help book worked best for you?

I have had a couple of sessions with a combined counsellor/ life coach which I initially sought out partially for someone to be a listening ear to cope with living alone during UK lockdown (I get groceries delivered so only leave my apartment to take out the trash or get prescriptions). I am now getting more support from online friends as some of them are also at home at this time and we are all seeking and giving support to each other. Rather than just quit the counselling/ coaching I'd like to have maybe five more sessions exploring a different coaching technique each week. Can anyone speak of a technique they learned in coaching or a self-help book which was especially helpful? [more inside]
posted by AuroraSky at 7:30 PM PST - 3 comments

How to accurately calculate a pay raise?

I received a job offer for a position to start mid-May, and I'm trying to determine the actual percentage raise from my current earnings. Seems straightforward, right? But I'm having a really difficult time figuring it out. Maybe it's coronabrain. Maybe I'm super overthinking it. I need to figure this out by tomorrow. Halp! [more inside]
posted by koolaidnovel at 6:30 PM PST - 4 comments

How long should I keep my deceased Aunt's medical/financial records?

My 88 year old Aunt passed away late September 2019. She had been in skilled nursing since 2011. She had virtually no money and my Mom was able to get her enrolled in Medicaid which paid for most of the cost of skilled nursing. She had Medicare and a supplemental policy, too. [more inside]
posted by socrateaser at 5:33 PM PST - 8 comments

What technobabble should I google?

I feel like more than once, in science fiction, I've seen machines that characters have to do techno-babble to by opening up a machine, and swapping around a bunch of cards or circuitboards or whatever inside. But I'm drawing a blank coming up with any concrete examples. Can anyone think of any specific episodes of shows, or movies, in which this happens? Bonus points for any technobabble justifications for what they are supposed to be doing.
posted by aubilenon at 5:12 PM PST - 22 comments

Could you recommend some novels and/or novellas?

In normal times, I spend a lot of time reading. Right now, I'm struggling to focus on anything, let alone sit down and read. I'm in the mood for novels or novellas that are some or all of the following: short-ish; punchy; a little weird or surreal; neither super-dark nor super-light; and maybe funny or wry. Could you recommend some? [more inside]
posted by cimton at 4:59 PM PST - 26 comments

Short fiction is better than long right now...

Reading is my escape, but I'm too scattered right now for long-form fiction (god i wonder why). Rec me your favorite short story collections please? I'm open to any author or genre, as long as the writing is good - thanks!
posted by ersatzkat at 3:06 PM PST - 29 comments

Need Quick Advice: Should I consent to lumbar puncture for my baby?

My 7 week old son just got admitted to the hospital. They ran a bunch of tests and identified that he has a fever of 103, he has an infection, and he has a UTI (which is apparently uncommon in infants). [more inside]
posted by JPowers at 2:28 PM PST - 18 comments

Should I loan my father a firearm?

As a result of Quarantine and the uncertainty and anxiety surrounding it, my father has asked me to loan him a firearm. He says that everything in the past few months has left him feeling unprepared and vulnerable. I'm not sure how to feel about that and would appreciate any insight or suggestions you might have, especially if you've been in a similar situation. [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 2:27 PM PST - 59 comments

What else can I do with roasted chickpeas besides just snack on them?

I made pretty basic crunchy-roasted chickpeas for the first time, and even though I'm pretty sure I did it right, it turns out I don't really like them. They're too hard, they're kind of greasy and starchy and tasteless, and I don't want to eat 2+ cups of them as is. Any other ideas? [more inside]
posted by slenderloris at 2:22 PM PST - 15 comments

Podcasts App Keeps Adding Tons of Podcasts

Every time that I add an episode of a podcast, it adds ALL the episodes that I've listened to. I'm using Apple's podcast app on my iPhone. Details inside [more inside]
posted by Alvin80 at 12:51 PM PST - 5 comments

Playlist: This one's for the girls!

What are your recommendations for songs by women, for women, celebrating girlhood? Country music is my favorite, but all things sisterhood will work. Old standards, coming-of-age, DTMF ballads, looking back on a life well-lived. Girls are doing it for themselves.
posted by TrishaU at 12:44 PM PST - 27 comments

Tab(let)? I can't give you a tab(let) unless you order something!

What's the best 100-200$ 7-10" tablet that I can root? [more inside]
posted by Dmenet at 12:21 PM PST - 10 comments

Yoga without Adriene

Seeking recommendations for YouTube yoga sessions without all the chat [more inside]
posted by Ender's Friend at 11:53 AM PST - 8 comments

Mystery roll of blue «something» from Japan

I bought this blue thing in the housewares/hardware section of Oomomo, thinking it was some kind of tape. It's not any kind of tape I've seen before. What is it? [more inside]
posted by scruss at 11:34 AM PST - 11 comments

Name Prononciation in Email Signature?

In my job I get a lot of email introductions that lead to phone or Zoom calls. My name is easy to say, but the spelling is easy to mispronounce. For example, if my name sounds like “Hazel” but is spelled “Hazyl”. Not the biggest deal, but it would be nice if there was an easy and gentle way to share how my name is pronounced. Like in an email signature? [more inside]
posted by Goblin Barbarian at 11:26 AM PST - 7 comments

What to do with chestnut flour

I bought some chestnut flour for a cake. Now I have a lot of extra chestnut flour. I do not like dried fruit and I do not want to make pasta. I have most regular baking ingredients but no other non-wheat flours, though I'm not unwilling to get those (if available) for the right recipe. Sweet or savoury is fine.
posted by jeather at 11:26 AM PST - 6 comments

Do you recognize this set of books?

When I was a kid in the late 70's/early 80's, my mom had a set of books for kids that I believe she bought when she bought our set of encyclopedias. The set consisted of about 9 volumes. I don't remember all the volumes but hopefully describing what I do recall will help. [more inside]
posted by Neely O'Hara at 11:13 AM PST - 8 comments

I want to be freee (from thoughts about whether I'm hot or not)

My body image is unstable and takes up so much mental real estate... Please teach me how to switch this part of my brain off. [more inside]
posted by existentialwhale at 10:36 AM PST - 16 comments

Examples of sax & Guitar unison solo lines in jazz/funk

I'm looking for examples of saxophone and guitar playing the same (or working very tightly together) as an alternative to the traditional improvised solo. [more inside]
posted by Mikey51 at 10:29 AM PST - 2 comments

How to setup Windows for YouTube Karoke

My kids want to do Karaoke on a Windows 10 laptop. I have looked for instructional guides, but all of this includes mixers and other equipment. [more inside]
posted by WizKid at 10:04 AM PST - 2 comments

Cake recipe to use cherry liqueur

I have 1/3 cup of homemade cherry liqueur that is several years old. I'd like to turn it into a boozy cake. Recommend me a recipe? Preferences inside. [more inside]
posted by aws17576 at 9:01 AM PST - 6 comments

Is it time to go home to Massachusetts? Covid 19 edition

Hi, ask mefi. My husband, baby and I traveled to Va on March 9th. Extended house work planned to take 2 weeks. We’re staying at my in-laws. Pandemic! It’s been 7 weeks. I am scared to make the 12 hour trip with a 5 month old to Massachusetts, the third biggest outbreak site in the country. We are welcome to stay here and have all been getting along fairly well. But, it’s been weeks since we’ve been home! Should we stay or should we go now? [more inside]
posted by natasha_k at 8:40 AM PST - 12 comments

Computer games that players can control from their phones?

The Jackbox party games only require one player to purchase and run the game software. Other players interact by visiting a website on their phones, and entering a game code. This works great for remote play over Zoom. Are there other games that work similarly? (Either similar party/trivia games, or more board-game- / video-game-oriented things?)
posted by escape from the potato planet at 8:14 AM PST - 6 comments

Zoom Zzzzz

I have been having weekly Zoom sessions with my older parents/aunts, etc. Problem is, after a few minutes of chit-chat about life in quarantine we run out of things to say. These folks are in their 70s, and aren't particularly talkative (without prompting). What are some questions or conversation starters I could ask to liven up the chat?
posted by Ike_Arumba at 8:04 AM PST - 18 comments

The (actual) Bike Shed Problem

Hello, I'm in need a of a bike shed, can you help me with your experiences? [more inside]
posted by SaltySalticid at 6:52 AM PST - 10 comments

University and Covid-19 - should I stay or should I go?

I'm a current UK university student, about to move from a foundation year course onto the first year of the degree "proper". I have huge misgivings about starting university at such an uncertain time, particularly with regard to the course offering - online learning just isn't working for me and isn't the ideal platform for a very practical degree course, but it's going to be the norm for the foreseeable. I'm also worried about losing out on university as a place to continue my gender transition. What do I do? [more inside]
posted by winterhill at 4:44 AM PST - 16 comments

GDM support groups

Gestational Diabetes: looking for up-to-date online support group- Australian focus would be nice. [more inside]
posted by freethefeet at 3:37 AM PST - 5 comments

Questions to ask my doctor about endometrial cancer

I’m a fat woman in London, UK, and have just been diagnosed with endometrial cancer. I’m now awaiting a hysterectomy. What questions should I ask my doctor? [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 12:30 AM PST - 21 comments

April 25

What should I know about short-term food canning?

The Food Lab cookbook has a slight variation on Marcella Hazan's tomato sauce recipe, and apparently it can be refrigerated in sterilized jars for up to a month. That would save a lot of freezer space! Where can I learn more about this style of food preservation? What do I need to know to avoid poisoning myself? [more inside]
posted by ripley_ at 11:13 PM PST - 9 comments

How Couches, Though?

We need to purchase a new couch and I have no idea how to make it not terrible. [more inside]
posted by Parasite Unseen at 10:29 PM PST - 28 comments

Moire effect when viewing PDF via web browser

Why does a moire effect appear on a PDF only when viewing in a web browser? The PDF needs to be viewed by a client online, but eventually will be printed in a book. Google-fu has failed me!
posted by shinyj at 9:31 PM PST - 3 comments

Title/author of a YA/children's science fiction book

Details are fuzzy, but the book was one of many by this particular author that I read as a kid in the mid/late 80s, I believe. The protagonist discovers an outbuilding in his yard contains a [something] that slows time, meaning he goes into the shed for, say, 2 hours, then steps outside where only 30 seconds have passed. He spends an entire year in this time shed improving himself while only a few hours pass for everyone else overnight - the motivation was that he was trying to distinguish himself from his twin brother. What book was this?? [more inside]
posted by hansbrough at 9:31 PM PST - 4 comments

Concerned about depictions of/references to sexual assault in Twin Peaks

I have heard that the 1992 Twin Peaks film depicts sexual assault, but I would like to recommend it to someone who very much likes the surreal. [As an aside, let me know if you think I'm incorrect in thinking that Twin Peaks would satisfy an urge for the surreal.] I was hoping to be advised, so I could pass on the information, as to the degree in which sexual assault is a part of the Twin Peaks franchise. Is it clear in the original show or hinted at that a character was sexually assaulted? Would it be satisfying to watch the original show and not the film? Is it possible to watch the original show and skip the film to the recent continuation? Etc.
posted by TheLinenLenin at 9:27 PM PST - 9 comments

Animal Crossing New Horizons Save Data

I have a Switch Lite and a mad desire to start my ANCH save over. I don't want to lose my current save, which is stored locally on the Switch itself. If I get a flash card, can I offload my current save data there as a backup, then clear my internal card and start over? If eventually I decide I want to go back to my first save, is that possible, too?
posted by Kitchen Witch at 8:22 PM PST - 5 comments

Is there a way to export an enumerated list to individual image files?

Is there a simple way to export individual questions from an enumerated list in a LaTeX document to separate images? [more inside]
posted by NoneOfTheAbove at 7:22 PM PST - 5 comments

Guidance for art for a tattoo design

Commissioning an artist for tattoo work - how to guide her [more inside]
posted by plinth at 5:54 PM PST - 2 comments

Gifts made by, and intended for, Latinx persons

For a relative, we are looking for birthday gifts from Latinx-owned companies. [more inside]
posted by gudrun at 5:53 PM PST - 3 comments

Weighing risk to volunteer at food bank

My wife wants to volunteer at the food bank. But I have some concern about her having higher risk factors. I am not sure whether even I should go, because I could bring the virus back to her. We would both use a face mask and gloves and take appropriate precautions. My wife does not see this as a problem. [more inside]
posted by NotLost at 5:04 PM PST - 13 comments

How do I cope with a relative around whom I don't feel completely safe?

I have a relative with whom I have occasional contact. They can be fun and funny, but they also have a flip side that disturbs and upsets me. I welcome your advice regarding how to manage my feelings related to this. [more inside]
posted by SageTrail at 12:46 PM PST - 42 comments

How to support my friend (MTF) through her transition (UK)

My friend is about to start HRT treatments in the UK; she's just come out to her parents and is thankfully able to go ahead with treatments in spite of the Big Dumb Virus. I'd be grateful for any advice from trans women in the UK on things that would have helped you to have or to hear (or not hear?) from a friend as you started on HRT. I'm locked down in a different country, but we can video chat etc.
posted by jlibera at 12:27 PM PST - 2 comments

Thinking about upgrading my cell phone experience

My cell phone has never been my friend, but I'm thinking about changing that. The new iPhone SE has me interested in getting a much better phone than my crappy old LG phone. Along with that I'm thinking about moving from TracFone to an actual cell contract. I'm curious what people have to share about what cell plans and cell companies they have that they like that aren't hugely expensive. I'm not a household bundle sort of person, the contract would be just for me. [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 12:01 PM PST - 27 comments

Prestige tv with no violence and no death??

Both of my parents recently had big health scares, though are now doing well. But now my dad, at least temporarily, can't watch a little bit of tv every day, which he really loved to do, because it's too triggering. [more inside]
posted by zeek321 at 11:48 AM PST - 28 comments

Help my choruses host a fundraising cabaret..

I’m on the operating board of two, large (200+) LGBTQIA community choruses, one of which is celebrating 40 years next season. Specific online fundraising questions. [more inside]
posted by pearlybob at 11:03 AM PST - 4 comments

How can I make a DX7 sound good?

I was given a Yamaha DX7 early 80s synth. How can I make it make exciting sounds? [more inside]
posted by umbú at 10:37 AM PST - 10 comments

How to keep iPhone storage free for taking video

As a newly-minted online teacher, I have been using my 32GB iPhone to shoot videos for my classes. After using AirDrop to store them on my desktop, I have to delete them from my phone to keep storage space free for the next batch. However, even after deleting them and clearing the "Recently Deleted" folder, my "Other" storage category doesn't drop. I need this space back! [more inside]
posted by klausman at 10:33 AM PST - 6 comments

Should I rent a Zipcar during Covid?

I need a car for the day (Tho not ABSOLUTELY essential). I am concerned about any previous people in the car. They claim to wipe down the cars. I talked to them to see if I could get car no one has rented for a day or 2. They say that is possible. I can clean it also when I get in. What do you think?
posted by ebesan at 10:12 AM PST - 8 comments

What are these microscopic bugs in the soil of my Maidenhair fern?

Just when I thought this one was actually going to be okay. [more inside]
posted by unannihilated at 10:08 AM PST - 4 comments

How much iron should I take? (29F, low ferritin & hair loss)

I posted a question about my hair loss a few days ago, and I guess the conclusion is my ferritin levels are too low and that's likely why I've been losing my hair. How much iron is it safe to take though? I won't be able to consult this with a doctor nor have my ferritin levels checked anytime soon, and google wasn't of much help. [more inside]
posted by U.N.Owen at 8:12 AM PST - 8 comments

Alternatives to Amazon Subscribe & Save

Is there a list of alternatives to Amazon's Subscribe & Save? [more inside]
posted by toastyk at 7:51 AM PST - 5 comments

Social distancing in dealing with lawyer

My state doesn't do eClosings. We're supposed to meet our lawyer face to face. How can we maintain 6 feet social distancing during a real-estate closing? Other tips to make this as safe as possible?
posted by spacefire at 6:02 AM PST - 9 comments

The gold rush is on

Where to go to invest in gold? [more inside]
posted by InkaLomax at 4:09 AM PST - 8 comments

April 24

In which subfields of computer science can I learn more about math?

First, I've asked a ton of questions related to this, it's annoying yes, but I want to apply to a masters degree and part of doing that is doing research and asking questions to narrow down the scope. [more inside]
posted by Tarsonis10 at 10:16 PM PST - 13 comments

How do I improve my Coronavirus productivity?

I've always had problems with productivity and concentration but with the lockdown things have fallen off a cliff. [more inside]
posted by whitelotus at 9:25 PM PST - 27 comments

We're not in Google Voice anymore.

My cell phone number started out as a Google Voice number, but I ported it to a main carrier back in October. However, when I try to use my number at some places, it still recognizes it as a Voice/VoIP number. Is there anything that can be done to fix this? I'm assuming it has to be "updated" in a system somewhere and that there's nothing that can be done on my end. Thanks!
posted by signondiego at 8:23 PM PST - 3 comments

What does it feel like to become bilingual as an adult?

If I’m going to continue on my current path it’s important for me to become fluent in Spanish. Despite that I’m having trouble getting started and I’ve realized one of the big reasons is that I don’t have any image in my mind of what it would feel like to speak two languages. I’ve talked to people who grew up bilingual, but what if you came into it later in life? [more inside]
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 8:04 PM PST - 24 comments

What was this 2000s folky/Indie song?

I'm trying to remember a song that I used to hear on WERS in Boston in maybe the late 2000s or early 2010s. [more inside]
posted by ldthomps at 7:15 PM PST - 4 comments

Need a UPS, what do I get?

Life in the country during quarantine has been awesome except for the power outages. I know I need a UPS but I have no idea what to get - this is well outside my areas of expertise. Can the tech savvy portion of the hive mind throw me some suggestions? More detailed info inside. [more inside]
posted by ninazer0 at 6:53 PM PST - 12 comments

Devolution for the right reasons

Is anyone aware of regions, movements or collectives seeking devolution with an holistic mindset or looking to create a new politics, and especially one oriented to low-carbon thinking? [more inside]
posted by unearthed at 5:30 PM PST - 4 comments

Daycare - when to go back?

Daycare isn't currently an option for us, but help us weigh when to send Little Synesthesia back once it reopens. [more inside]
posted by Synesthesia at 4:00 PM PST - 11 comments

Experience with TMS

I am interested in hearing from folks who have undergone TMS (transcranial magnetic stimulation) Therapy for treatment resistant depression about their experience. Did this work for you? If so, how long lasting were the effects? What did you wish you knew or asked the doctor before undergoing treatment? What advice would you give to someone considering this? [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 2:59 PM PST - 7 comments

COVID19 bringing out unpleasant sides of people you thought you liked?

Since the COVID19 pandemic began, there has been so much written and discussed about the virus bringing out people's true colors: selfishness, hypocrisy, willful ignorance, delusion, privilege, racism, "but muh freedoms," and so on. I'm seeing this ugliness arise in a few of my friends. How should I process this new information about them, having now seen them in a different light? How should I reevaluate our relationships? If I "cancel" them now, will I regret it later, when life regains some semblance of normalcy? [more inside]
posted by keep it under cover at 2:42 PM PST - 24 comments

Please help me meta

I have never done a meta-analysis before. I am struggling to find some basic information I need and am hoping some stats-y mefites can answer my query! [more inside]
posted by DTMFA at 2:38 PM PST - 2 comments

what's the thing from the 80's that makes shirts shorter?

Okay it's ungoogle-able because I can't say it succinctly... the plastic O with a slash through it, think Ghostbusters logo, that you would thread the bottom of your shirt through to cinch it and make it shorter... what's that called? so i can buy a few? [more inside]
posted by emirenic at 2:29 PM PST - 5 comments

Improving Japanese at home

I studied Japanese for a couple of years in college using the Genki textbooks. I'd like to study more now that I have free time. Can you recommend resources with a similar feel that I could study at home with? [more inside]
posted by marfa, texas at 2:27 PM PST - 4 comments

Do you have to disinfect sprouts before you grow them?

Hi, is it necessary to disinfect sprouts before you grow them in a mason jar? [more inside]
posted by lynnie-the-pooh at 2:19 PM PST - 2 comments

Find This Book?

In the 80s or early 90s I borrowed a book from the library. Female author, probably the book was a cookbook or in the cookery section, but what I remember were the stories. She described one story of ending up shipwrecked on an island with a ruined cabin, going into the cabin, and finding a bowl with a little bit of ancient flour in the bottom which she revived into sourdough bread on which she and her family survived temporarily. [more inside]
posted by shadygrove at 2:16 PM PST - 4 comments

Can't Shelter In Place WIthout A Roof

How do we finance roof repairs for our house? [more inside]
posted by Sauce Trough at 1:19 PM PST - 14 comments

treatment for family member with bipolar disorder

I have a two-part question related to getting treatment for a family member with bipolar disorder. [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 1:17 PM PST - 5 comments

Prescription Sunglasses for High Rx

I have a glasses prescription of about -5.25 in each eye. Where would you go online to get Rx sunglasses with that heavy of a sphere? [more inside]
posted by mr_bovis at 11:54 AM PST - 12 comments

Better living through saucers on the roof

I am about to break down and order satellite TV. But which one? [more inside]
posted by SLC Mom at 11:35 AM PST - 3 comments

Would Google Forms be a good option for an online trivia night?

I've been having weekly game nights with friends and we've had enough of the Houseparty/JackBox type apps. I want to host a customized trivia/name that tune night but there's no clean/accurate way to buzz in so I was going to have them answer via text or email but now I'm thinking that having to sort through and open every text or email seems really cumbersome. [more inside]
posted by simplethings at 10:28 AM PST - 7 comments

Cash, career, calling

I had a career counselor tell me that first comes cash, then career, then calling. I thought it was interesting advice on how life should progress financially. Any thoughts on this way of seeing adult life? [more inside]
posted by shirhashirim at 10:10 AM PST - 32 comments

Skateboard 101

I want to skateboard. Any useful tips? [more inside]
posted by morning_television at 9:17 AM PST - 5 comments

Can I use a beard trimmer to cut my hair?

Can I use a beard trimmer to cut my hair? [more inside]
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 9:04 AM PST - 18 comments

How to watch an old soccer match without knowing the score first?

A friend and I want to watch an old international soccer match (doesn't matter which one, really) over video one of these socially distant evenings. How can we do it, without knowing the score first? [more inside]
posted by RajahKing at 8:26 AM PST - 7 comments

Affordable above ground pool options

With the prospect of summer camps being canceled and being stuck at home for the entire summer, I'm desperately looking for options to help our backyard be a little more fun. Does anyone have an affordable (under $500) above ground pool situation? Inflatable? Structured? Looking for recs from folks who own or have used a specific model. Warnings also welcome :)
posted by LKWorking at 8:03 AM PST - 12 comments

Accessible & positive cardio exercise videos

I have recently discovered Leslie Sansone's "Walk At Home" videos, and am really enjoying them (SLYT example vid; SLYT channel), much to my own bafflement. What else might I like? [more inside]
posted by thetarium at 5:40 AM PST - 4 comments

Help me remember this sci-fi book’s title please!

From a friend: “I read a book around 2002/2003 about a man who was thrown into a parallel universe after his wife tragically died in a car wreck. In the new universe she was cheating on him so he hired a private investigator. Somehow he and the PI discovered that he was in the parallel universe.” [more inside]
posted by tatiana wishbone at 4:45 AM PST - 2 comments

Outlook woes

I seem to have ended up on a very chatty work-related mailing list. It's really distracting. I get a ton of emails a day from strangers and the notifications are very distracting. What Outlook features can I use to stop getting notified about these emails in particular and about relegating them to a separate folder in my inbox, when there aren't any distinguishing features to use as a filter? [more inside]
posted by unicorn chaser at 2:56 AM PST - 5 comments

April 23

Convert 3M respirator for use during blood donation?

I have a respirator (think Breaking Bad) that I have been wearing during the few times I'm within 5 meters of another person. I have an appointment to donate blood. I would like to protect the phlebotomist to the same level as a well-fitting cloth mask, but the respirator has a one-way vent. What should I do? [more inside]
posted by wnissen at 10:23 PM PST - 6 comments

Self-care Gifts for Quarentine Birthday

Help me come up with an amazing smorgasbord of skincare / makeup / scents / other to order for my SO while we're sheltering in place. [more inside]
posted by postcommunism at 10:02 PM PST - 17 comments

Please find me the perfect backyard lounging chair

I do not want a lounging chair with a laptop tray that makes it easy for me to work from my backyard. I do not want a gorgeous Adirondack chair. I do not want a beautiful vintage work of art of a chair that I can take pictures of for Instagram but that I do not want to actually lounge in. I want a comfy lounging chair. [more inside]
posted by erst at 9:26 PM PST - 9 comments

Gimme those cozy travel fantasy recs for quarantine!

So one thing that's been helping my Mom and I during this lockdown is re-reading our sources of what I'd call 'cozy fantasy'-- you know, like the chapters in LOTR where they've arrived somewhere safe and can eat and rest for a few days, or when Mole and Ratty get safe into Badger's house in Wind of The Willows. More, please? [more inside]
posted by The otter lady at 7:05 PM PST - 30 comments

ISO songs about a woman/women that do not refer to them as girl/girls

I want to create a playlist that avoids grating on my last nerve. [more inside]
posted by she's not there at 6:56 PM PST - 33 comments

College Graduation in these COVID-19 Times

How can a department at a small liberal arts college congratulate our graduates, without physically meeting? [more inside]
posted by Peter Petridish at 5:16 PM PST - 10 comments

2000 mile road trip with a newborn

We received the amazing good news that we were picked by someone for an adoption and find ourselves suddenly going to pick up a newborn. But because of current circumstances, we can’t fly home with the (Healthy!) baby. We are going to be first time parents driving from Ohio to California with a 5 day old girl. Please help me make this as painless as possible! How can I best prepare for this drive (taking place probably Tuesday)?
posted by BuddhaInABucket at 4:11 PM PST - 41 comments

This map of Covina made me curious about the basics of City Governance.

I was looking at a map of LA and noticed that you could click on the discrete towns and get a border to show the area. I have questions... [more inside]
posted by Just this guy, y'know at 3:58 PM PST - 19 comments

Almost intermediate runner

I am looking to improve my running but am overwhelmed by the amount of information online. Could you direct me to the best resources, like YouTube videos or books or websites or whatever, that would fit my needs? [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 3:43 PM PST - 8 comments

Voice loss after illness

I had some kind of virus/stomach issue in mid February, and lost my voice almost completely. Now, 9 weeks later, it still hasn't come back. Looking for advice/hopeful anecdata, etc. [more inside]
posted by sizeable beetle at 3:00 PM PST - 8 comments

Can I wear a niqab or similar?

I'm not Muslim. I'm a white woman from the US living in the US who does not have ties to Muslim culture. Can I wear a niqab during this pandemic? [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 3:00 PM PST - 20 comments

Canadian undergrad wanting to publish a paper in an academic journal?

I am a fourth year undergraduate student, and I would like to work on a research paper about educational reform, but I am only an undergraduate student. If I want to use another Professor's works for reference to build upon my argument, do I need to ask their permission to use their reference, since this paper is not being graded for a course, but hoping to get it published in an academic journal. [more inside]
posted by RearWindow at 2:19 PM PST - 11 comments

Where can I find this puzzle box?

I'm looking for this puzzle box, or the plans for one, or even pictures of one disassembled. I've seen them on a site called SiamMandalay, but they're sold out.
posted by Marky at 2:12 PM PST - 2 comments

Canine separation anxiety and working from home

So I am working from home and always thought I would love it. But I’m finding it challenging in unexpected ways. One of the things I most looked forward to, is the opportunity to hang out with my dog all the time. About 75% of the time it’s awesome. But the other 25% is driving me crazy. How do I create a more manageable routine? Help! [more inside]
posted by Weng at 1:37 PM PST - 10 comments

Best online venue for taking a free or cheep course in R

I've had some casual exposure to R. I would like to become sufficiently proficient that I could say install R and packages, import a data set, run some statistical models, and make some graphs. I'd like to do a course online. I'd like something free or quite cheap. I do not require any sort of certification or grade etc. What's the best source/site for such a course? I'm open to everything from Lynda.com to MOOCs etc. I don't think i really want to cobble something together by browsing youtube.
posted by If only I had a penguin... at 12:59 PM PST - 15 comments

Can a "breathable" waterproof jacket be made to shed water again?

I have a Columbia "Omni-Tech" jacket which is my go-to garment for dog walks and the like when it's wet out. Structurally it is still fine, but the shell material no longer beads water, or at least not for very long, which makes wearing it not a lot of fun. [more inside]
posted by maxwelton at 12:28 PM PST - 11 comments

What is going on with my knee?

Sudden-onset inner knee pain caused by ??????? [more inside]
posted by catoclock at 12:16 PM PST - 6 comments

Supporting the trees - birch tree and power line edition

I have this beautiful little birch tree in the backyard of a home I recently purchased. There are 4 trunks that have grown out kind of like the roots of a molar tooth - they each curve in different corners. Unfortunately, both mine and my neighbor's power lines run through the branches of two of them. [more inside]
posted by raztaj at 12:13 PM PST - 7 comments

BerkeleyFilter: Where can I be outside alone?

I live in an absurdly small studio apartment with no yard. Normally, I spend a lot of time at parks, but now they're either closed or overcrowded. Even the sidewalks in my neighborhood are too crowded to comfortably go for a walk when I want to be outside in the afternoon. Where could I go around Rockridge, Oakland or Berkeley to just sit outside without worrying about people walking by? [more inside]
posted by pinochiette at 11:39 AM PST - 25 comments

Creative ideas needed!

A friend and I have been coordinating GOTV efforts for the past few elections. Over the winter, we hosted "letters to voters" parties with a plan to do GOTV canvassing once the weather turned warmer. Covid-19 upset those plans so now we've got our volunteers writing letters at home. We need a cute phrase we can put on small envelopes for people to contribute stamps and/or money toward buying stamps for all these letters we're having written. [more inside]
posted by DrGail at 11:25 AM PST - 2 comments

Coronavirus housemate problem

My partner is very high risk. My housemate is very anxious to go shopping, pick up takeout at local foodcourt, etc. I own the house. What do I do? [more inside]
posted by Frowner at 11:12 AM PST - 33 comments

Salary expectations in tech with defined job levels

I am currently interviewing with a tech company (one of the big ones) for a position characterized as ‘Senior Level Individual Contributor.’ They’ve asked me for salary expectations, and for my own clarity, I’d like to figure out what industry level outside of tech this would be equivalent to. [more inside]
posted by Everydayville at 10:38 AM PST - 17 comments

Advice on California Unemployment

Keep current unemployment claim open or file new? [more inside]
posted by ducky l'orange at 9:52 AM PST - 3 comments

Quarantining together

Me and my family have been quarantining for 5+ weeks. My friends family has done the same. How much risk is there for us to spend a few days all together at their house?
posted by pmaxwell at 9:37 AM PST - 22 comments

Help me live the good life - by sharing your tricks

I wanted to post this question for quite some time, but had trouble framing it. After reading this interview with Donald Knuth I suddenly realized what is I'm really after: "A person’s success in life is determined by having a high minimum, not a high maximum. If you can do something really well but there are other things at which you’re failing, the latter will hold you back. But if almost everything you do is up there, then you’ve got a good life. And so I try to learn how to get through things that others find unpleasant.". Share your tricks how you raise your minimum! [more inside]
posted by kmt at 9:08 AM PST - 18 comments

Am I Out of Line for Not Wanting to Go to the Office?

I work in a very small business. Less than five people during normal times. We are in the tristate area (NY/NJ/CT), in an area very hard hit by the virus. I last was in the office in mid-March and have not been in since. [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 8:00 AM PST - 10 comments

The way for our wills?

My spouse and I have an informal understanding of what we'd like in terms of our wills. Before we talk with a lawyer, can you help us refine our ideas? [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 7:59 AM PST - 9 comments

Tasty, tasty almond flour

I have some toasted almond flour! I want to do something delicious with it, preferably sweet / desserty. What should I make? [more inside]
posted by meese at 7:57 AM PST - 13 comments

Online figure drawing class

Anyone doing zoom/video figure drawing classes right now? Not just sessions, but classes with instruction and feedback?
posted by latkes at 7:37 AM PST - 6 comments

What is an insider term for "company hopping?"

There are people who aren't loyal to any one brand. A good example, I think, would be cell phone plans. Say someone jumps companies every time a better seeming contract comes along, so they go from Sprint to Verizon, and then next time they go from Verizon to T-Mobile, etc. They pick the best advantage deal of switching every time. Is there a company insider term for this type of "company hopping?" How are customers who do this described within a company labeling the type of customers they have?
posted by tiny frying pan at 7:07 AM PST - 6 comments

Gift delivery in Santiago, Chile?

I have a friend in Santiago, Chile, to whom I would like to send a little 'thinking of you during this time' gift. I don't want to go the international route (e.g. Amazon) as from previous experience this can take months. I would love to order something online from a local maker there who could deliver (by post or in person); I have checked Etsy but there's not a lot. My Spanish is very rusty which hampers my googling. Any suggestions?
posted by atlantica at 6:50 AM PST - 2 comments

Do I want a Peloton? If not, what do I want?

Current circumstances are making me actually consider getting a Peloton. Is this likely to be a good investment for someone desperate for meaningful exercise and potentially stuck in a small flat a lot in coming months? If not, what might be better? [more inside]
posted by sueinnyc at 6:04 AM PST - 25 comments

Gift ideas for two-year-old's birthday?

What are your suggestions for a birthday present for my downstairs neighbor who's turning two in early May? (I am close with the whole family.) So far, I've come up with the idea of creating a box of at-home activities the family can do together -- ingredients for play dough, jars of vinegar & baking soda for volcanoes, that kind of thing. I am not sure if this is a good idea or should wait until the kiddo is older. Notes under cut. Thanks in advance! [more inside]
posted by wicked_sassy at 5:36 AM PST - 12 comments

What other options for putting Powerpoint with audio online?

This is more of a question asking for ideas. I have a number of powerpoint files - with audio in them - which some students are having difficulty downloading and viewing. So I'm looking for ways to help them out. [more inside]
posted by Pyrogenesis at 2:57 AM PST - 10 comments

April 22

We're All in This Together

I've heard celebrities, municipal, state and county politicians, doctors, nurses and essential workers say it. How many federal politicians have said it? Are there tweets, FB posts or newspaper articles, radio interviews or TV news soundbytes where a US Senator, or House of Representatives member, cabinet level official or President has said it? Not counting the President's response team or members of the CDC.
posted by CollectiveMind at 9:42 PM PST - 5 comments

Any behind-the-scenes on lives shows "WFH" yet?

All late night hosts are doing WFH bits, with the exception of Conan and Fallon all look like they had set designers or behind the scenes people either running the show or there once. I don't know if these are running live or not, but I can't imagine them running live without a full satellite crew. For example, Kimmel's "home," which I have no doubt is at his home, looks like a full on set designer took over a garage or something. [more inside]
posted by geoff. at 9:18 PM PST - 12 comments

I wish to mitigate actual physical pain when exercise causes 'good' pain

I wish to mitigate actual extreme physical pain when exercise causes pain. CW: suicidal ideation. [more inside]
posted by Evilspork at 7:07 PM PST - 11 comments

I may almost a doctor*, but I don't understand Zoom. Halp?

*not that kind of doctor. I'm trying to figure out if I can host a meeting on Zoom (or another video platform) while also participating in another meeting. This is for my dissertation defense, so I'd really like it to work. Can anyone help? [more inside]
posted by Paper rabies at 6:44 PM PST - 14 comments

Seeking TV recommendations - relatively upbeat with great ensemble casts

I'm looking for TV recommendations for relatively upbeat shows with great ensemble casts (or varied casts of characters that really tie together, even if there's a main lead). A little bit of sarcasm and snark is always welcome, too. Stuff I've really liked: Schitt's Creek, Community, The Good Place, Zooey's Extraordinary Playlist, Doctor Who. Can you recommend what I should watch next while staying socially distant and indoors? Thank you!
posted by slateyness at 6:27 PM PST - 44 comments

Carrots and celery and parsley, oh my!

I bought too many carrots. I have about 12 oz. of carrots I would like to use up, and I don't see my wife and I munching on that many. I also have about half a stalk of celery and half a bunch of parsley to use up, too. Do you have a recipe for me? [more inside]
posted by NotLost at 6:24 PM PST - 22 comments

Seeking baby chicken expertise!

My sister found a baby chicken in her driveway. How can she take care of it until they find someone to take it? [more inside]
posted by leftover_scrabble_rack at 6:02 PM PST - 10 comments

Young adult novel from the late 70s

Does anybody remember the title of a young adult novel from the late 70s or early 80s about a guy with an incurable disease who gets cryogenically frozen so he can wake up in the future at at a time when a cure has been found? [more inside]
posted by ambulocetus at 5:03 PM PST - 5 comments

Is there an anti-face-mask face mask?

We're in a city that mandates face masks, and we've been wearing them daily. Today my husband and I noticed that we both have deep bags/wrinkles under our eyes that (based on their location) are probably caused by the masks against our skin. I haven't been out since walking the dog at 7 this morning (over 12 hours ago), and the lines are still there. Is there a fix for this? Will it go away? It looks like we both gained 10 years overnight.
posted by Mchelly at 5:00 PM PST - 11 comments

Borrowing academic textbook

Looking for resources for borrowing an ebook version of an academic textbook. [more inside]
posted by dawg-proud at 4:46 PM PST - 7 comments

What is the best way to host a virtual event these days?

I had an event planned for June that may need to go virtual due to COVID-19. I have looked at options like Zoom and Teachable, but I'm not sure what other platforms exist or what would be the best one. Facebook is not an option as some of the attendees don't do Facebook. Special details inside :-) [more inside]
posted by Calzephyr at 4:41 PM PST - 7 comments

Meeting facilitation training

I'm planning an online training in how to do meeting facilitation for a group of my fellow workers. This training needs to be a one-off/relatively short. I am looking for training materials. I am happy to pay. [more inside]
posted by latkes at 4:36 PM PST - 2 comments

Managing Medications: how do I keep track of it all?

My mother has brain cancer, and she's taking about 20 different medications right now. Today her primary care doc indicated that she doesn't think that my father is up to keeping track of all the medications, and she thinks that I should take over. I am also not really up to keeping track of my mother's medications, but that doesn't matter, because someone needs to do it, and it looks like that someone is me. Please help me come up with a system so I don't fuck this up. [more inside]
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 4:12 PM PST - 19 comments

Help me with my home Ethernet setup

When we had some rooms redone in our house 18 months ago, I thoughtfully had the contractors install Ethernet jacks (along with ~100 feet of loose cable, described within). I'm now trying to get this connected to my home network, which currently exists as an integrated DSL modem / wifi router that is nowhere near those new rooms. Pretty sure I need a hub or switch or something similar, but what exactly? [more inside]
posted by Joey Buttafoucault at 3:58 PM PST - 10 comments

toast

All of the outlets in our kitchen stopped working this morning. What else can I try before getting our property manager or an electrician involved? [more inside]
posted by theodolite at 3:30 PM PST - 6 comments

How do I have a social life if too much screen time causes pain?

I have tendonitis/muscle weakness/TMJ in my neck/shoulders/jaw. Being on the computer/phone a lot causes me pain. Pushing through the pain causes even worse pain, which persists day to day. I am on the computer at least 30 hours a week for work. Socializing online just isn't working. Using a mouse/keyboard/touchscreen is problematic, but just looking at a screen hurts my neck. Does anyone else have this problem, and how do you handle socializing these days? [more inside]
posted by hijol at 2:35 PM PST - 10 comments

Dragon Naturally Speaking for control of PC, is this as good as it gets?

I recently switched to using Dragon Naturally Speaking, Professional Edition v15. I am trying to minimize my typing and save my wrists. I find Dragon software very underwhelming, and Google search provides no clues to hacks for the software. Special snowflake details inside. [more inside]
posted by 4midori at 2:11 PM PST - 4 comments

How does refrigeration affect Coronavirus survival/decay rate?

Plenty of sources have indicated that most of the virus will die off/decay after about 3 days on most surfaces. On many porous surfaces, like cardboard, it lasts much less time. But I can't seem to figure out: how would these times be affected by refrigeration? [more inside]
posted by summerteeth at 1:36 PM PST - 5 comments

Is online therapy the solution here?

I am badly in need of a therapist for some issues with paranoia that possibly stem from PTSD. Given the paranoia coupled with the specific issues I would like to discuss, I do not feel comfortable speaking with someone who lives in my city or any of the surrounding cities. [more inside]
posted by massofintuition at 1:32 PM PST - 10 comments

Starting points for video/audio production on an iPad Pro?

I’m starting to create educational video at home as supplementary material for my remote students: brief, fun explainers and talks, reply videos, etc. I only have an iPad Pro (and an older iPhone) at home. I’ve been using super basic tools, like cloud recording through the Zoom app, but I’d like to get better at this: to edit, do voiceover, and produce nicer videos. Could you point me to good starting points for the apps, best practices, workflows, and so on for doing this well with only a tablet?
posted by Stevia Agave at 1:09 PM PST - 1 comment

recommend an available (-ish) face mask I can buy

My bandanas and homemade masks are not the greatest face coverings. Is there a reusable mask I can buy that you'd recommend, that I can get before, say, 2022? [more inside]
posted by kristi at 12:28 PM PST - 28 comments

Bad time to buy a new computer?

I teach college classes online and my lightweight laptop is driving me mad. Is this a terrible time to invest in a new one, especially if my contract doesn't pay over summer? (A potential move, PC questions, and more details inside.) [more inside]
posted by caliche at 11:39 AM PST - 8 comments

KVM switch options for ChromeOS + macOS + Windows 10

At home I alternate between a cheap personal Samsung Chromebook 3 (XE500C13), a 2012 Mac mini server, and a work Lenovo ThinkPad T460s. I have a wireless Logitech K750 keyboard and an M705 mouse both controlled by a Logitech Unifying USB dongle. There's also a Dell Ultrasharp U2415 monitor. I unplug the HDMI cable and USB dongle and swap them between the three platforms when I want to use the keyboard, mouse, and monitor with any given device. I'm aware that a KVM switch can make this easy between the Lenovo and the Mac, but I am concerned about whether such a switch will allow the Chromebook to play nicely with the others. I also wonder whether the Unifying wireless dongle plays nicely with KVM switches. Does anyone know whether a device exists that will allow me to switch easily among the three devices using the same monitor, keyboard and mouse?
posted by cgc373 at 11:38 AM PST - 6 comments

ADHD and partnership best practices

I am wondering how you as a person with ADHD navigate the intersection of your symptoms with your relationship. I am also wondering how you as the partner of someone with ADHD navigate this intersection. I am looking for what is normal in the dynamic, what is actionable, and who is responsible for what. [more inside]
posted by crunchy potato at 11:13 AM PST - 15 comments

Celebrating graduation in time of COVID?

How are you planning to observe/celebrate graduation during lock-down? My son is a high school senior, and we just can't let this event go un-marked -- but the school has cancelled the big, in-person event. I would love some ideas of what we can do to celebrate this. [more inside]
posted by wenestvedt at 10:03 AM PST - 16 comments

Easy clean toaster?

I love toast. I absolutely hate cleaning my toaster. I have the kind with a removable crumb tray. I have to clean it monthly, and I hate hate hate doing it. The crumbs get stuck around the edge where the toast goes in, and they fly everywhere when I remove the tray. It takes me a good 15 minutes to get my toaster and the area around it clean and crumb free. Is there a type of toaster that's easier to clean? I've had one that a hinged crumb tray and it was even worse to deal with. I think if my toaster had a really deep crumb tray that was easily accessible the process would be a lot easier. A toaster oven is not an option due to limited counter space.
posted by Stoof at 9:56 AM PST - 19 comments

Creating a dynamic document with user-selectable sections?

Is there software that will allow me to create a complete master document/form with a bunch of sections, easily let the user of the form select only the sections they want, then automatically repaginate, update the table of contents, etc? Up until now, I've been creating the document in Word, then making it into a form in Acrobat, but as far as I can tell neither of them offer this dynamic functionality.
posted by SampleSize at 9:43 AM PST - 2 comments

My cat hates it when my partner kisses me?

My cat and I (they) have been staying with my partner of two years, K (they) and their other partner, S (she) during the COVID-19 mess. It’s all going really well in spite of the circumstances; the humans all get on great and adore cats, and the cat loves people. I’m just really perplexed by kitty’s reaction when K and I kiss. [more inside]
posted by thepigeonsknow at 8:54 AM PST - 15 comments

Best online courses to learn Google Analytics

What are the best online courses to learn google analytics? I know Google has their own free course, but are there better ones out there? I have a professional development budget at work so the course does not have to be free.
posted by winterportage at 8:20 AM PST - 4 comments

What happens during breakdown on bridge or in tunnel?

Have had this thought for a while. What if you experience debilitating car problems in an area where there is no shoulder or breakdown lane? I realize it's dangerous, but surely it happens from time to time. Here's an example of a tunnel and a bridge with no shoulder or breakdown area. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ppia5xUr8kU Help ease my mind in this scenario. Thanks!
posted by toastchee at 7:57 AM PST - 9 comments

Great LiveStream/Zoom Performing Arts/Classes

I'm looking for amazing livestreams/zooms that you have taken or plan on taking, or good places to look for them. Plays, concerts, comedy shows, lectures, classes etc. Ideally are unique, actually cost money, and (not necessarily for some performance art) are pretty interactive.
posted by sandmanwv at 7:45 AM PST - 3 comments

Traveling during Covid-19

My husband has had a chronic cough since last August, and he's been seeking treatment for it the entire time. Just before Covid-19 broke (or the story broke, anyway), his doctor told him he was being referred to the Mayo Cough Clinic in Minnesota. I wasn't expecting this to come to anything during Covid-19, but they just called and want him to come in on May 5th. What do? [more inside]
posted by ashirys at 7:40 AM PST - 13 comments

Another "What Car Should I Buy" question

After asking this question a few years ago, I am now in the market for mid-large size 3-row SUV. I am pretty sure that the car I want is a Volvo XC90, but am open to other suggestions. I have driven some of the top competitors including the Toyota Highlander and the Acura MDX and the Audi Q7 and ridden in the Tahoe and I strongly prefer the XC90. Details below the fold: [more inside]
posted by seesom at 7:24 AM PST - 16 comments

How can I find someone to sext with?

I’m a single bisexual woman in my 30s, currently isolating with family that includes small children with big listening ears. Normally, I’d be dating to meet people for possible hookups/relationships, but obviously that’s off the table right now. I’m thinking that the best way to have a sex life right now would be to have someone to talk dirty with via text. How do I go about finding someone to do that with?
posted by anonymous at 6:22 AM PST - 11 comments

How to help a person having a manic+paranoid episode?

A close friend is having a very paranoid episode -- hasn't eaten, hasn't slept -- and is currently in stay-at-home mode, alone. The people who live closest to them are wrapped up in the paranoid conspiracy thoughts in a way that makes me think it would not be helpful for them to check up on this person. They also live in a city with a very high prevalence of CV19. As far as I know this is the first time this kind of episode has happened. Does anybody have any advice on how to help? Resources?
posted by mojopiano at 6:00 AM PST - 9 comments

Our laptop is Slow!

Said laptop is a Dell Inspiron 5566 with Windows 10 (uptodate) and using Chrome browser (also up to date). CPU: Intel i3 Memory 6 GB in two slots Storage: HD SATA 3 2.5" form factor 932 GB. Have run CCleaner (is this still a thing?) to no avail. Is it worth adding RAM? If so is this worth doing or am I SOL? Any and all solutions welcomed!
posted by lungtaworld at 3:51 AM PST - 10 comments

Help me geek out about emergency supply chains

I recently read Eric Larson's The Splendid And The Vile, which touches on transforming factories during WW2 to produce aircraft. I am also reading a lot in the news currently about the need for factories to pivot to making PPE for key workers. Where can I read in much more depth about how this actually works? How do you take your existing manufacturing plant and suddenly get it to make something it wasn't designed for? [more inside]
posted by citands at 2:50 AM PST - 4 comments

April 21

Can I eat this:beef hot dogs

I opened them only 24 hours ago but now there are some strange Grayish spots on them? [more inside]
posted by Blitz at 11:24 PM PST - 3 comments

Help me think through what country we should move to

I'm an American citizen married to a Chinese citizen, we live in China, and are trying to figure out where we should move to. We are currently working on the (long!) process to move to America, but I'm having cold feet. Lots of snowflake details inside. There is brief mention of the coronavirus, but the conversation absolutely does not center on it at all. [more inside]
posted by wooh at 10:06 PM PST - 30 comments

2 Nintendo Switches, 2 Children, 1 Dad with a credit card

What is the best (i.e. cheapest) way for me to purchase games on the Nintendo Switch so that both kids can play on their own individual console under their own profile? [more inside]
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 9:50 PM PST - 10 comments

How to email a reminder after several months have passed?

An expert in a field I want to work in promised to send me some materials, but never did. Now, several months have passed and I don't know if it's strange for me to send a reminder email asking if he could still send me the materials. [more inside]
posted by NoneOfTheAbove at 7:31 PM PST - 7 comments

Negotiate with my commercial landlord for temporary rent abatement how?

I'm the owner of a small retail specialty food shop (Portland, ME, USA) that's been closed to the public since March 15. We're selling online, but... overall sales are down :) so I'm considering asking my landlord for a temporary rent reduction. Just not sure how best to position it, what tone to use, what terms to propose, etc... [more inside]
posted by Text TK at 7:27 PM PST - 11 comments

Download epub on Android from archive.org books collection - how ?

I've been trying to download an e-book in epub format from archive.org to my android phone and it sort of looks like it's doing something for a second and then ... nothing . Has anyone been successful in doing this ? Is there some special approach I need to take to this ? Background details inside ... [more inside]
posted by southof40 at 6:52 PM PST - 8 comments

Career suggestions?

Hi, a friend is out of work due to COVID-19 (entertainment industry/cruise ships) and wants to use this as an opportunity to explore new careers. Could you suggest careers that he should explore (or, if you do this thing, are you open to an informational interview?). Friend is 40-something, incredibly bright, endlessly curious, books on his shelf range from astrophysics to the history of public sanitation. Great at expressing himself in writing (and verbally). He has worked in the entertainment business for 20 years and plays piano as well as a number of instruments and sings professionally. [more inside]
posted by arnicae at 6:36 PM PST - 7 comments

Help! What kind of bike should I get?

Y'all were so helpful in steering me towards a great mountain bike, but my around-town bike just got stolen and commuting to work on it was the only thing keeping me sane. I need a replacement/upgrade asap. I want something pretty comfortable for commuting and in town that could also be used for road rides of 20-30 miles in my very hilly area. also I'm very short (5'2" with short legs for my height) [more inside]
posted by genmonster at 6:08 PM PST - 12 comments

Can I just do nothing?

So my mom just passed away. She was sick for a long time, so it isn't surprising, but the problem is she is in the US and I am in Korea. Logistically, I don't think it is possible for me to go and be with my family right now. Emotionally, I don't think it is possible for me to not go. Is there like any guidance for this kind of situation? [more inside]
posted by Literaryhero at 5:50 PM PST - 14 comments

Oh no virus don’t you brick my switch

Where can I find the official Nintendo Switch dock? Or failing that, what third-party docks work well and won’t brick my Switch? [more inside]
posted by downtohisturtles at 5:25 PM PST - 5 comments

What's wrong with American capitalism? Play this game to find out

I want to understand how the American economy got the way it is. What are the best intro-level explainers of capitalism that use code, simulation, or visualization as a primary means of explanation? [more inside]
posted by Rich Text at 1:40 PM PST - 9 comments

Does Android Work actually... work?

Basic question: if I install Android for Work on my phone and Outlook etc can my employer spy on me? A google search says no but I'm feeling paranoid. [more inside]
posted by selfnoise at 1:32 PM PST - 4 comments

Thank you to thesis committee

How to thank my thesis committee? [more inside]
posted by aetg at 12:29 PM PST - 10 comments

What's the best setup for remote music lessons / duets?

Tell me about your remote music-playing solution! Do you have something that's much better than FaceTime for both ends playing at once? We're trying to do beginning piano lessons and duets are a no-go over FaceTime. [more inside]
posted by mmc at 12:03 PM PST - 14 comments

This question comes to you from behind a wall of empty gin bottles.

Can anyone recommend a small home still? I've been going through gin like it was water and I'm interested in making my own. I have buddy with a small still and I've done the process a couple of times with him. Any recommendations for one that I can order online?
posted by humboldt32 at 11:55 AM PST - 19 comments

Can I look up domains by "Registry Domain ID"?

I'd like to look up a domain registration by "Registry Domain ID" and understand the implications of that ID [more inside]
posted by Glomar response at 10:43 AM PST - 3 comments

The play might be the thing

What kind of theatre do you want to see when this is over? [more inside]
posted by miles1972 at 10:16 AM PST - 15 comments

Seeking real-time table massage tutorials

My DH bought a massage table for us to use during shelter-in-place, but while we both love getting massages, we don't really know how to give them. We really need online video tutorials which take the viewer through a 30-60 minute table massage lesson/session, which one of us can watch while giving the other a massage without having to press "pause." Thank you for any and all help!
posted by egeanin at 10:10 AM PST - 3 comments

Planning for Planning

Urban and regional planners – how did you get your job? Where did you do to school? What have you learned along the way and what resources can you recommend? [more inside]
posted by NewShoo at 9:40 AM PST - 12 comments

Online auto repair course?

I've always wanted to learn more about auto repair in order to be well-equipped to repair my old camry. I would like to be proactive about it, rather than researching issues as they arise. I'm looking for any recommendations for an online course that teaches the basics of auto repair. [more inside]
posted by unid41 at 9:13 AM PST - 3 comments

Meditation for kids

I find meditation helps me a lot and I wish I found it earlier. How can I introduce it to my kids? [more inside]
posted by aeighty at 8:58 AM PST - 13 comments

Interfaith Marriage in the late 1800s USA

I'm looking for demographics as well as societal feelings on interfaith marriage in the US in the late 1800s. I'm specifically interested in marriage between Jewish and Protestant people. [more inside]
posted by sciencegeek at 8:19 AM PST - 9 comments

ISO cheapy but functional printer

I have a MacBook Air. My partner has a Samsung Chromebook. I haven't owned a printer in years and I suddenly find myself in need of one. Can anyone please recommend me a good, inexpensive printer that would work for both of our computers with minimal setup required? Assume that both of us are not very great with technology beyond Word, Excel, and QuickBooks. Thanks!
posted by nayantara at 8:17 AM PST - 23 comments

Explain how instacart shoppers work and how that explains odd outcomes

How do instacart shoppers work? Do they scan items on their phones to "check out" or do they stand in line? Do they scan every item or just those that they are substituting? Do they pay themselves and then get reimbursed? Why do I get things for free and things I didn't order and this is not reflected on receipt? (oh, also, how do they get paid?) [more inside]
posted by If only I had a penguin... at 8:02 AM PST - 8 comments

What are some of your favorite "awe-inspiring" moments in books?

I am mainly thinking about science fiction, but am open to all genres. I'm looking for moments where something...big happens/is described. Something amazing. Where everything sort of comes together and some really incredible scene unfolds. Hard mode: no spoilers! [more inside]
posted by wooh at 6:48 AM PST - 45 comments

Dusty Garage Springfield

Is it worth parking my car in my super dusty garage? [more inside]
posted by BAKERSFIELD! at 6:18 AM PST - 15 comments

Free courses to build online teaching skills (undergrad focused)

I'm going to have some time on my hands, so I'm looking for free online training courses that focus on building skills for teaching online with undergrads. Areas of interest include online pedagogy/instructional design in general, as well as the following topic areas among others: climate change, social science, qualitative methods/ethnography, technology/society/ethics, history of technology, communication, and so on. Thank you! [more inside]
posted by carter at 5:19 AM PST - 3 comments

Can I leave?

I live in New York, alone, and I want to go home. Can I feasibly do this given the things I've laid out? [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 5:05 AM PST - 45 comments

Worrying about my housekeeper during COVID-19. What to do?

My beloved, longtime housekeeper has not been working during the COVID-19 crisis. My finances are stable so far and I have offered to pay her at the normal rate during the downtime, which she refuses. She asked to start working again in early May, which is not even remotely going to be safe in our hard-hit metro area. I declined this offer. I am struggling with guilt and am not even really sure what criteria I might use to agree to have her back. Help? [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 5:05 AM PST - 22 comments

April 20

Best platform & software for these convos

What's the best way for me to create a "videochat podcast" show that happens in real-time, requires no editing, and lives on the internet? [more inside]
posted by nouvelle-personne at 9:08 PM PST - 5 comments

Seaweed Salad recipe

Below is my seaweed salad which I make once a week. What can you suggest to add or change just to break the monotony? [more inside]
posted by falsedmitri at 7:04 PM PST - 16 comments

Is this worth going to the doctor for?

You're not my doctor or pharmacist. However, week I had an outbreak of dyshidrotic eczema on the palms of my hands and fingers. With everything going on due to covid-19, is this even worth going to a walk in clinic for? I don't know what to do! [more inside]
posted by VirginiaPlain at 5:31 PM PST - 26 comments

Is a Master's in Social Policy worth it?

I am curious to know if a master's in Social Policy a good degree? [more inside]
posted by RearWindow at 5:21 PM PST - 5 comments

Help me find good Trans 101 content

I'm trans, and contemplating the terrifying prospect of coming out to my immediate family. Would like useful 101 content to pass on to them but my mental health cannot take all of the google searches that finding it will entail. Would love some help in this. [more inside]
posted by forza at 5:06 PM PST - 6 comments

What plants to plant in an alleyway "secret garden?"

We have a 3x20 shady space in our yard. It is bordered by a fence on one side and our barn wall on the other, so it is quite shady. I would like to turn it into a "secret garden" jungly type space for our daughter (she turns four tomorrow!!!). What plants should we plant there? [more inside]
posted by chaiminda at 4:38 PM PST - 18 comments

What can I bake with 2 lemons and no grater?

I have 2 fresh lemons gifted from a neighbor, an incurable sweet tooth, and the skills of an adventurous beginner baker. What should I (attempt to) make? [more inside]
posted by serelliya at 4:23 PM PST - 19 comments

Red flags to look for if joining a sublease?

Someone is offering a 1-year lease in a 2BD/2BR apartment, but wants it to be a sublease, not through the building. Is this a good idea? [more inside]
posted by thoughtful_analyst at 4:00 PM PST - 6 comments

What are some of your favorite 30-mins or less non-sitcom tv shows?

I am looking for shorter tv shows available to stream (preferably on Netflix, Hulu, or HBO) that are not sitcoms. Some of my favorite shows are: Please Like Me, Nurse Jackie, My Brilliant Friend, Westworld, Succession, The Comeback, Silicon Valley, Dark, Years and Years, Black Mirror. Most of the type of shows I like are 45 minutes or longer (I have a long list of those to watch) but I’m hoping there are more great shows out there that I’m missing that are shorter. Thanks!
posted by sunshine37 at 3:53 PM PST - 32 comments

Cat poop in the pansies.

My lovely neighbor just informed me my cat has been using her perennial flower beds at a litter box. I would like to change this cat behavior while maintaining good relations with said neighbor. Short of making my raised-as-a-barn-cat rescue into an inside cat, what actions should I take? I am looking for product and training recommendations. I have already cleaned up all the existing poop from her flower bed. I will be purchasing any products we use to tackle this issue. The cat has an indoor litter box that she happily uses when she is inside. [more inside]
posted by Grandysaur at 3:24 PM PST - 15 comments

Using a desktop as a second monitor for a laptop

I have a Windows laptop that I use as my primary computer. I'm used to working with double monitors in the office, but working from home with just one screen has been very difficult. I found an all-in-one Windows desktop computer that I would like to use as a second monitor with the laptop as primary, but I cannot figure out how to do it. Is this even possible? [more inside]
posted by Neely O'Hara at 12:40 PM PST - 13 comments

Upstairs neighbor renovating during shelter-in-place

Our upstairs neighbor has decided that the current coronavirus pandemic is the best time to redo the entire apartment. It wasn't great living under them tearing up the floor for a whole week, and then painting has been a lot louder and with more sawing and hammering than expected. How can I find someone to call either from the city or the county to either confirm this is allowed or report him? [more inside]
posted by Carillon at 12:29 PM PST - 7 comments

How do I let ALL the bugs know they're no longer welcome?

What are some general indoor insect-repellent measures I can take in my home? [more inside]
posted by Calicatt at 12:03 PM PST - 8 comments

Ways for kids to support local health care workers?

I'm looking for ideas for ways I and my kids (ages 7 & 11) can help support local health care workers, aside from putting signs in our windows and banging pots and pans at 7 pm (and staying healthy). We don't know any personally. Is there anything else we can do during these long days at home? We're in Portland, OR.
posted by gottabefunky at 11:56 AM PST - 11 comments

My money's no good here

Please help me not spend another 3 hours doing this. I need a new iphone. My old one is an iphone 6 and limping along with no camera and other problems. I have Verizon but want to switch plans -- both for this new phone, and for another line that doesn't need a new phone. [more inside]
posted by nantucket at 11:35 AM PST - 11 comments

Possible coronavirus stimulus fraud?

Should we be concerned that a stranger's stimulus check came to our home address when we've lived here for seven years? [more inside]
posted by WhollyMatrimony at 11:16 AM PST - 10 comments

Coding an app .. Excel or Google Sheets or Python?

I want to make an app or spreadsheet to enter and wrangle some numbers into particular arrangements, on an Android or Apple pad. Will this be possible in Excel or Sheets, and if it is, which would be easier to code, or would a Python app be more straightforward? (I know neither spreadsheet nor Python well, but I'm a retired programmer ready to try to figure it out so any & all hints, clues and advice will be *very* much appreciated: my coding brain is rusty! If python will be best, what UI would it use on a pad?). [more inside]
posted by anadem at 10:45 AM PST - 3 comments

How quick is the pickle?

Our meal kits often include a "quick pickle" on a persian cucumber. How long is the minimum and maximum the cukes can sit in the liquid? [more inside]
posted by soelo at 10:45 AM PST - 7 comments

What to do with 1936 Berlin Olympics porcelain bell -w- swastika?

Mrs. LDS inherited a bell collection many years ago. We recently sorted through it and discovered a little '36 Olympics bell, complete with text in the Fraktur font and a small swastika. We're stumped as to what to do with it. More under the fold: [more inside]
posted by Larry David Syndrome at 10:27 AM PST - 21 comments

Cooking with 100% pure cacao wafers

What it says on the tin. I have a four lb. bag of completely unsweetened 100% cacao wafers. I'd like suggestions for using them in recipes which call for other forms of chocolate. I'm familiar with the recipes on this site and this site, neither are especially appealing. Thanks!
posted by cyndigo at 10:25 AM PST - 3 comments

Recipes to showcase almond and/or oat flour?

In the Before Times, I purchased a bag each of oat flour and almond flour to use for recipes when hosting someone with gluten issues. The recipes I made were fine, I guess, because I don't remember anything about them, good or bad. Like many people, I'm baking my way through self-isolation, and this seems as good a time as any to use these flours before they get weird. What recipes have you used that really showcased oat flour and/or almond flour? [more inside]
posted by SeedStitch at 8:54 AM PST - 27 comments

Articles/anec-data dealing with COVID-19 working/parenting at home?

I'm feeling... unseen right now as a person in a partnership where both of us have equal (online, non-"essential") work responsibilities and pay, who have a young child to manage during this time. I'm not the only one here... right? right? [more inside]
posted by wannabecounselor at 8:33 AM PST - 28 comments

Cobrama, por favor.

Please help me compile a list of Spanish covers of English songs. [more inside]
posted by skewed at 8:30 AM PST - 30 comments

Decipher some old handwriting

I'm trying to decipher a name on some old records (I can read the father's name OK, it's the mother's name I am having trouble with. The name appears here, and is a bit clearer here. (some more clues/details inside) [more inside]
posted by iamsuper at 8:26 AM PST - 9 comments

Stop hitting yourself, stop hitting yourself

I need help to stop hitting myself in the head. CW for self-injury, obviously. Details inside. [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 8:17 AM PST - 11 comments

Pajama/lounge pants with no strings attached

I'm looking for high-quality women's pajama or lounge pants with an elasticized waist - no ties. For some reason, this is hard. Other snowflakes within. [more inside]
posted by FencingGal at 6:50 AM PST - 18 comments

I Am Once Again Asking for Your Hip Hop Mix Suggestions

It's been 10 years to the day since I asked this question but quite a bit has changed since then. Many of the links from the post are dead and while I still love 90's hip hop, I've grown to enjoy hip hop from the '00's, & '10's too. Please suggest your favorite hip hop mixes (and DJs) from the '90's, '00's, & '10's - lil' more background after the jump! [more inside]
posted by alrightokay at 5:55 AM PST - 5 comments

Please explain this 43-year-old joke to me

We are in a bar on Halloween. The narrator describes a series of jokey and punny costumes that the bar patrons are wearing, and then his own: "Me, I was dressed as a pirate with a black eyepatch and the name of a certain oil company painted across my chest." What's the joke? [more inside]
posted by Glier's Goetta at 3:58 AM PST - 4 comments

Persistent hair loss without a known cause (29F)

I've been losing my hair for almost 3 years now. Went to all the doctors, had many tests done yet no cause was found. Were any of you ever dealing with something similar, or maybe know someone who did and managed to find out what was causing it and how to stop it? [more inside]
posted by U.N.Owen at 3:42 AM PST - 21 comments

Tell me about your experiences taking medication for anxiety

My anxiety seems to be getting the better of me at the moment (not really COVID related); this is a perennial issue, but I think it might be time to start thinking about medication - how was it for you? [more inside]
posted by smoke at 2:02 AM PST - 24 comments

April 19

Do culinary grads know how to bake?

Please help settle a discussion. Can one feasibly graduate culinary school and become an executive chef without knowing how to bake? That seems like being a mathematician but not knowing how to add. So since neither of us have been to culinary school, what gives?
posted by jojo and the benjamins at 9:58 PM PST - 17 comments

Car buzzing when off for over 48 hours

My Subaru Crosstrek had a moderately loud buzzing sound coming from underneath it tonight. It hadn’t been driven or even started in over 48 hours. Starting it made the noise stop immediately. Ideas? [more inside]
posted by inflatablekiwi at 9:56 PM PST - 3 comments

Exercises to improve cycling uphill

I've been riding my bike more nowadays and I want to get better at uphill cycling. Besides practice, are there any exercises I can do to improve my uphill stamina or my cycling performance in general? [more inside]
posted by vanitas at 8:37 PM PST - 17 comments

It should be easy to export an iTunes list, but it's not.

I know iTunes is not everyone's choice of music file managers, not even for Mac users, but I like it. I came up with it through the years and have the keyboard shortcuts ingrained, and I have come to like the way it presents my music in lists that I can arrange. What I've discovered I don't like is how hard it is to export the entire list of music. [more inside]
posted by The Pluto Gangsta at 6:44 PM PST - 9 comments

recommend me your teleconferencing software

What teleconferencing software can support a weekly call among 4-6 people whose special-snowflake constraints include but are not limited to a mixture of Apple and PC telephone, no telephone service, and extremely poor tech literacy? [more inside]
posted by meaty shoe puppet at 3:53 PM PST - 11 comments

What should I do with a big bag of mini sweet peppers?

I bought a bag of mini sweet peppers that is way too big. Any suggested recipes welcome, especially ones that will likely require not leaving the house to buy more ingredients. (My own bonus mini sweet peppers recipe inside) [more inside]
posted by ShooBoo at 3:35 PM PST - 24 comments

Memorialise a Purr

I have a windows laptop and cheap headset that plugs into plain old headset jack. I want to use the mic on the headset to record my cat's purr to an .mp3 so I can use it as a notification sound on my phone. Recommend me a free software to do this? [more inside]
posted by Mitheral at 3:30 PM PST - 2 comments

Do I doctor? Broken toe in quarantine edition.

Two days ago, I broke my pinky toe. It is unquestionably broken. I haven't left the house since the February and I know it's just a toe, but... [more inside]
posted by Ruki at 3:29 PM PST - 16 comments

Safe, moderated online chatrooms or social opportunities for young teens

My 13yo has been struggling socially at school this year and so didn't have a strong group of friends when this pandemic hit. He asked if he could sign up for Omegle last night and my husband was an emphatic NO! Are there better, safer options where he could chat with other kids near his age in a somewhat safe environment? Especially options that match kids based on their interests. [more inside]
posted by victoriab at 3:15 PM PST - 2 comments

Is this Zoom thing doable?

Can I mute everyone on Zoom, including the presenter, without turning off my computer audio? Further details inside. [more inside]
posted by BlahLaLa at 2:23 PM PST - 12 comments

Bike Helmet Recommendations

I've been doing more road biking on hills, and it has me thinking I should get a helmet. What's a good and comfortable helmet for a casual weekend rider, and how does sizing work in helmets? [more inside]
posted by willnot at 2:19 PM PST - 9 comments

how to report plagiarism

But not by a student. Elaboration below. [more inside]
posted by nayantara at 1:23 PM PST - 23 comments

Siblings 2 years apart - what are we in for?

After a huge emotional journey, we had our daughter 17 months ago. As soon as we had become resigned and happy with having an only child, of course the gods of fate decided to laugh in our faces and I got pregnant. The baby is due about a month before First Child turns 2. I go between being in denial and being bewildered. What are we in for? [more inside]
posted by like_neon at 1:11 PM PST - 23 comments

Toy research, early 60's

I have a couple of grainy images of cool toys. How can I find out more about them? [more inside]
posted by diode at 12:25 PM PST - 9 comments

Windows, why don't you like Bluetooth Audio?

So… Due to reasons I'm using a bluetooth audio headset under Windows, which is driving me a bit nuts. I'd appreciate any help in stopping it. Detailed behavior below the fold, but there's massive audio stuttering and poor sound quality in general. [more inside]
posted by Alensin at 12:21 PM PST - 2 comments

iOS app to send custom hotkeys to a PC?

Looking for an app that I can run on my iPad that lets me create custom hotkey layouts and bind those buttons to PC keypresses. I want to use this to play various Simulator games like Bus Simulator and Farming Simulator by creating layouts on the iPad for the advanced controls in the game.
posted by odinsdream at 12:18 PM PST - 1 comment

Still getting texts from a blocked caller

My poor MIL has been harassed and targeted by a number of online scammers. Frequently, they talk to her by text. We've slowly been able to block those numbers but she had a recent unfortunate encounter and I'm stumped. How could a blocked number still be reaching her with texts? [more inside]
posted by amanda at 12:15 PM PST - 5 comments

What kind of insect is this?

There are these insects that keep 'visiting' my kitchen. I have attached two images (yes, poor quality. The little monsters keep moving) Can anyone identify these insects? Would you share insights on how to evict them? [more inside]
posted by dfm500 at 11:46 AM PST - 6 comments

I'm scared to make Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s Fried Sushi Cakes

I've had my eye on Jean-Georges Vongerichten's Fried Sushi Cakes since before this all started. I made all the components yesterday and this morning, but I'm having unusually bad anxiety about actually finishing the dish. Please help. [more inside]
posted by slenderloris at 11:14 AM PST - 5 comments

Need help tuning my violin

I am new to violin/fiddle playing. Several months ago I took an intro fiddle class for absolute beginners. At the end of the class I was able to play 7 or 8 tunes (not well!). For a while I practicing regularly but then fell off. Now I'm wanting to practice again, but my violin seems weirdly out of tune. I have a tuner app that always helped me in the past, but now it's telling me the strings ARE in tune, but they sound bad to me. What's going on?
posted by swheatie at 11:04 AM PST - 5 comments

xkcd curated collection

I need a collection of all the gory, death-involved, weapon-involved, scary things, series of unfortunate events-related (if any), mythology, greek myths, anything fatal or deadly, etc., xkcd comic strips that exist. [more inside]
posted by aniola at 10:38 AM PST - 4 comments

I just need the percentage, dammit!

I've scoured the internet for what I need, to no avail. ALL I NEED is a rough percentage to figure out what I owe the IRS for this quarter. Total earnings are $2,960.00 I can't get a straight answer from the Motley Fool, IRS, Forbes, or any other website! GIVE ME THE FIGURE and I'll stop yelling.
posted by BostonTerrier at 10:34 AM PST - 10 comments

MeToo quote about the art we missed

I’m looking for some quotes about the art we missed out on because women (and enbies/genderqueer people) were harassed out of the scene. Any suggestions? [more inside]
posted by pxe2000 at 10:18 AM PST - 2 comments

Creative/Alternative Solutions for Living Together

Looking for ways to move forward a relationship. SO has a kid and the blended family dynamic is not yet at the point of all cohabiting. [more inside]
posted by mossy_george at 9:51 AM PST - 5 comments

Messy but sterile

Stores are out of Lysol wipes. To clean the house, I've diluted bottled full strength Lysol into a spray bottle according to package directions. I'd like to just spray that onto a rag and wipe down packages. [more inside]
posted by nantucket at 7:18 AM PST - 16 comments

This shit is bananas, or vice versa?

I had some overripe bananas which I peeled and stuck in the freezer to make banana bread later. And now it's later and I'm ready to make the bread. I thawed the bag of bananas in the fridge two days ago, and they don't look so good. [more inside]
posted by Serene Empress Dork at 6:13 AM PST - 18 comments

Help with articles to explain anxious mindset to non-anxious SO

I'm riding the daily emotional rollercoaster, as one does when anxiety is part of life. He's the exact opposite, and can't understand my struggles. Can you point me to articles that will help someone with a stoic, analytical mindset understand what it's like to be me? [more inside]
posted by I_Love_Bananas at 5:58 AM PST - 6 comments

help a lowly techno-idiot/masterchef nerd...

i have a smart tv, and a roku. and also, my laptop suuuucks. i'm also a huuuge masterchef australia fan, so to watch it, i have to get to the episodes through a link that's posted somewhere. how can i follow that link or whatever so that i can watch it on my tv? [more inside]
posted by megan_magnolia at 5:57 AM PST - 6 comments

Musical Note?

Is there a transcription of this musical postcard by Debussy? Or, better yet, has anyone recorded it?
posted by vacapinta at 5:38 AM PST - 1 comment

Monastic memoir recommendations

I am looking for recommendations of books, memoirs especially, of people who have either gone to live in monasteries (Catholic, Zen etc) as long-term visitors and/or people who have adapted a monastic discipline in their own lives without necessarily living in an actual monastery. [more inside]
posted by shibori at 1:45 AM PST - 17 comments

April 18

Sensory issues and coronavirus masks, how to cope?

I live in NYC where we now must wear masks where we can't totally socially distance, which means for me, in practice, the grocery store. But the heat, the constriction, the inner dampness of a mask, and the reduced airflow hit all of my bad-sensation sensitivities. Do you have any practical tips abut making mask-wearing less awful? [more inside]
posted by zingiberene at 10:40 PM PST - 12 comments

Moving During the Pandemic

As the title says, I am moving during the pandemic. I know, terrible timing. My basic question is this... I signed a lease for an apartment without being able to even look at the property because we are under a no travel order. Now, 10 days before I'm supposed to move in, my leasing agent called me to inform me the unit I rented is not going to be available. What rights do I have as a tenant? (ik you are not my lawyer, just wondering if anyone has lived through this) [more inside]
posted by DEiBnL13 at 10:33 PM PST - 10 comments

Asymptomic carriers of COVID19 (i.e. Typhoid Mary)?

I'm not asking about the stage of COVID19 in which people are initially asymptomatic. Rather, do we know yet if, and/or how long, people could be asymptomatic carriers of COVID19 (à la Typhoid Mary) – could it be indefinite (such as with Mary), or would it eventually progress to being symptomatic, or leave/burn out?
posted by WCityMike at 9:32 PM PST - 13 comments

What do I need to think about for my new back porch?

My old back porch is rotting away and it's time to get a new one. Because of the shape of the house and how the land slopes away from the house, it's going to be a pretty big porch. As long as I'm spending money on this, I may as well get something nice, because I'm not planning on doing this ever again. What features should I be thinking about? What features do you like / wish you had on your back porch? [more inside]
posted by Vatnesine at 9:03 PM PST - 33 comments

Help me remember this book!

I'm trying to remember the title of a fantasy novel I read a few years ago. It's in the same broad gaslamp/regency magic vein as: Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke; The Paper Magician by Charlie N. Holmberg; and Sorcerer to the Crown by Zen Cho, but isn't any of those! [more inside]
posted by prismatic7 at 8:14 PM PST - 11 comments

Best price on Vitamin C tablets, prefer mail online order.

I take a multivitamin daily. B complex daily. get micro-nutrients/minerals from pink sea salt dissolved in water. This whole COVID-19 thing got me looking for vitamin C. Had vitamin C ordered, paid for, magically they didn't have it any longer. [more inside]
posted by dancestoblue at 7:48 PM PST - 9 comments

How do I defrost Chicken Fat?

I froze the whole jar [more inside]
posted by fantasticness at 6:46 PM PST - 7 comments

Nintendo Switch game data storage?

Noob Switch question: I'm confused by how saved game data is handled. I get that the data is stored on the Switch and not the game's cartridge. Do I have do anything special to save a game's data when I change to a new game? We got a Switch last year and have only been playing BotW. We just got Mario Odyssey but I want to make sure I don't accidentally overwrite our saved Zelda data when I change game cartridges.
posted by not_the_water at 2:42 PM PST - 3 comments

Argh

I just blew dust out of the cooker base/heating element of my instant pot using "endust" electronics dusting spray. I promptly realized what a stupid, potentially dangerous idea that was. After wiping the whole thing out with a damp cloth, is it safe to use? [more inside]
posted by whistle pig at 2:03 PM PST - 9 comments

Weird and wacky arguments for and against gun control

I'm going to be debating this issue informally with some friends. What are some wacky arguments on either side? I want to inject some levity so we don't get too carried away with the inherent emotionality of the topic.
posted by storybored at 1:57 PM PST - 29 comments

Is "untreated" lumber treated?

I'm trying to build raised garden beds. Just as I was about to purchase some redwood boards, I remembered a tour of a lumber mill where I heard about "dip tanks" with fungicides (?) so that the lumber could be stacked outside without discoloring. Is this still happening, and will these chemicals leach into the soil? Also, I have a one-year-old who licks and chews pretty much everything. Is this an actual thing to think about and if so, what's the workaround?
posted by slidell at 12:34 PM PST - 11 comments

Care package for friends and new baby in Vietnam

We trade pictures a lot and I mostly send pic of the birds in my yard and I found these baby safe quasi-realistic stuffed birds that have real chirps so I got a bunch of those. Going to get some "Lucky Money" shiny/crispy dollars/$2 bills for the baby. Beyond that I am stumped, not finding too many great suggestions online. I'm hoping you can suggest some items that are hard to find in HCMC, VN. [more inside]
posted by certs at 12:30 PM PST - 5 comments

Shopping During Coronavirus: Best Practices (Snowflakes Edition)

Starting to quietly panic about visiting the grocery store in the coming days. Help me not do that. [more inside]
posted by xenization at 12:08 PM PST - 32 comments

No-knead bread needs non-bread flour?

I've been using all-purpose flour as directed to make the NYT/Jim Lahey no-knead bread (non-paywalled epicurious version). I was recently able to get bread flour from the supermarket (they're bagging the stuff they usually use in the bakery) and was wondering if that could be used instead of all-purpose here? [more inside]
posted by matildatakesovertheworld at 10:59 AM PST - 17 comments

Homeschooling question one million: medieval edition

Our ten year old son has been deeply into what he describes as “medieval” things: sword fighting videos on YouTube, making his own shield and sword (out of sticks and tinfoil), books like Taran Wonderer, etc. Give me your best learning-ish ideas with this general theme, please! [more inside]
posted by purenitrous at 10:21 AM PST - 36 comments

Mini Office in bedroom or living room?

I'm probably going to move from a 650 sq ft 2-bedroom to a 750 sq ft 1-bedroom (so instead of 2 smaller bedrooms I'll have one larger bedroom). I don't need a full home office set-up, but I do still want a small desk area. I do a little bit of work there, but 95% it's for hobbies. I also live alone. Do you think a mini office set-up works better in the bedroom or in the living room?
posted by Aranquis at 10:03 AM PST - 14 comments

Thawing and repackaging (vacuum sealing) a huge frozen block of chicken

I have this huge block of frozen raw chicken (over 6 pounds). It looks like it is all boneless, skinless chicken breasts. I also have a vacuum sealer (it's like this one, but an older model). What I want to do is thaw all the chicken, separate it out into individual pieces, re-seal them, and re-freeze so I can pull out and cook one portion of a time. What's the best way to approach this? Trying to figure out the least wasteful and most efficient method. [more inside]
posted by pupstocks at 9:49 AM PST - 10 comments

Apple ID splitting gotchas?

At long last our family members are each getting their own Apple IDs. In order to share in-app purchases I am not planning to use Family Sharing. Any tips and warnings from those who have done this? [more inside]
posted by wnissen at 9:24 AM PST - 4 comments

Secret Solstice Structure in the Southwest?

I recall reading about a sculptor or artist of some sort that was building or had built a massive stairway or ramp through or on sandstone geology in the American Southwest. The passage was designed to line up with the rising or setting solstice sun. The location was secret to prevent over-visiting and erosion, but was available for ceremonial use. [more inside]
posted by stinkfoot at 9:22 AM PST - 13 comments

Is there a way to stop my client from tracking my email activity?

I received a highly disturbing email from a client of mine indicating that she could see that I was currently viewing an email she had sent me a few days prior. What are the possible mechanisms she could be using to accomplish this and is there any way I can block it? [more inside]
posted by bkpiano at 9:06 AM PST - 16 comments

Great online courses?

I am looking for truly *great* and inspiring online courses to take (or videos to watch) that help broaden my perspective, are well-researched / taught by experts, and go into some depth (like several hours of content vs. 10min video). I am looking for links/recs to *specific* courses vs. general learning platforms like Masterclass. [more inside]
posted by ellerhodes at 8:52 AM PST - 18 comments

How does online dating work now?

I am newly single and and a bit perplexed by how dating works with Coronavirus. [more inside]
posted by pando11 at 8:28 AM PST - 13 comments

Is there a way to watch Taiwanese baseball on Roku?

Is there any way that I (in Canada) can watch the current Taiwanese baseball season on Roku? I've found ways to get it on my laptop but was hoping for a solution that can use my Roku rather than having to plug my laptop into the TV.
posted by synecdoche at 7:10 AM PST - 5 comments

Audience participation / interaction / community in large online events?

Have you taken part in any online events with large groups (say, 300 to 30,000 people) that did interesting things to create a sense of participation / interaction / community among the people there? I'd love to hear about that! (Or about things you haven't seen, but would like to) [more inside]
posted by ManInSuit at 5:34 AM PST - 4 comments

Lesser-known ways to ameliorate coronavirus crisis

I'm not looking for the well-known things we should all do that every media outlet has already covered every day. I'm looking for ideas that haven't been much promoted, but would be helpful. There is not one correct answer to my question. The right answer is for us to put together a lot of ideas among which different people can pick and choose or combine in accordance with their circumstances. To help get things started, the "more inside" section includes one way to fight the rolling toilet paper shortages--a way that I've already experimented with. [more inside]
posted by cattypist at 1:11 AM PST - 37 comments

April 17

Anonymous Financial Gift/Gift Cards

We're a dual income family who received the stimulus yesterday. We've done donations to our preferred charities, and have a small amount left over that we'd like to give to friends who we know are in need. However, it feels a little smug to do this, and neither of us want to be like a jerk in Oliver Twist. Basically I'm looking for a way to send a few people $100 gift cards, but without them knowing it was us. [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 9:20 PM PST - 14 comments

Debt repayment

I have a $15,000 line of credit with a 7.3% interest rate and a $18,000 personal loan with fixed weekly payments of $183.45 at 7.5%. Those weekly payments are non negotiable. Which should I pay off first? Or, do I pay off both at the same time? [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 9:19 PM PST - 9 comments

Seeking stories about adoptees adopting their own kids

I'm married to an adoptee, and we'd like to adopt a child. I'd like to learn about other adoptees' experiences adopting their own kids. [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 9:18 PM PST - 5 comments

Vets receive payment

Senator Jeff Merkley just sent out an email saying vets who have not filed taxes (and who may not have filed in 2018 and 2019) will, according to the Treasury, receive a $1200 payment. It is for any vet who uses VA benefits. [more inside]
posted by CollectiveMind at 8:46 PM PST - 2 comments

Two households, both alike in dignity, in fair Corona...

I know everyone's tired of coronavirus questions, but... help a brother out. Gay guy who had a weird couple of years meets another gay guy who had a weird couple of years. Separated by distance, but with a glimmer of a possibility of ending up in the same city in the near future, these guys end up striking up a conversation. It blooms. Just as the flower opens up and announces itself to the world, an asshole virus puts the kibosh on it all. Recognizing that this is far from the worst thing happening in the world right now, I'm looking for insights into how people handle non-negotiable separation at that point of interest in something bigger. Bathe me in your wisdom, mefites. [more inside]
posted by late afternoon dreaming hotel at 4:27 PM PST - 9 comments

Good Xbox game for two cooped-up tweens?

Our kids, 10 and 13, have an Xbox but very few games. What is a good age-appropriate game they can play together? [more inside]
posted by Mid at 4:02 PM PST - 16 comments

I do not want my cat to be my alarm clock

Our senior citizen Bandit (cat tax pic) is moving up his morning yowling time incrementally by 15 minutes and I cannot do it anymore. [more inside]
posted by tafetta, darling! at 3:21 PM PST - 14 comments

Help Me Paint a Mural (Please God help Me!)

Unwisely, I decided to paint a mural on a wall in my house. I have very little mural painting experience. Not surprisingly, this is not going so well. I need materials suggestions. More after the jump. [more inside]
posted by WalkerWestridge at 1:53 PM PST - 9 comments

What stops someone from clearing out the Treasury via check?

As I understand it, personal checking accounts in the US are not particularly secure because the routing and account numbers shown on paper checks are all that's needed to access funds. Is the checking account used to mail out tax refunds at the same risk or does the Treasury do something special? Bonus pandemic CARES Act question inside. [more inside]
posted by Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drug at 1:52 PM PST - 4 comments

Espaciel balcony light reflector - worth it? Alternatives?

Do Espaciel balcony light reflectors really work, and/or are there any alternatives folks have successfully used? [more inside]
posted by dubhemerak3000 at 1:28 PM PST - 3 comments

FSA Cleanup Filter - Shelf Life of Breast Pumps

My FSA will be closed in 6 weeks and I need ideas to use up the money (it is use it or lose it). I will have around $1,200 to spend. One option, other than buying $1000 worth of tampons, is to get a breast pump per FSA store. Challenge: earliest we'll need it is next summer, as noone in this household is pregnant. Will a piece of electronic/hydraulic equipment last this long?
posted by sandmanwv at 1:18 PM PST - 15 comments

Stuck in the Apple Arcade

My son wants to unsubscribe from Apple Arcade (he's 13, and it's my $4.99/mo, so I fully support him in this effort.) It's not showing up in his subscriptions. When he tries to download a game through it, however, it lets him for free. I have read explanations online that indicate it's supposed to show up in your subscriptions like any other subscription. But it's not. I am more than $5 worth of annoyed about this. Does anyone have any insight? If you're subscribed, does it show up in your subscriptions? [more inside]
posted by chesty_a_arthur at 1:11 PM PST - 8 comments

Road trips from the bay area that don't involve much interstate driving?

Assuming we all ever get to leave our houses, it still seems like road trips are going to be more of a thing for a while than other kinds of travel, but 1) I find interstate driving unpleasant and 2) everything in the west is so fucking spread out. Where could we go that won't take two days to get to and could be done on smaller highways with less 75mph driving? This is of course nothing like immediate but I wanted to get some ideas. (Personally I am a big fan of Not Going Places but I try to accommodate more normal ways of living sometimes.) [more inside]
posted by less of course at 12:33 PM PST - 18 comments

Essential Dog Supplies

So we're (almost certainly) getting a dog! He's a 50 lb. black lab/boxer mix, about three years old, crate trained, potty trained, and good natured. Tell us about the stuff/gear you use that we/our dog might like. Crate. Dog bed. Treats. Food. Toys. Talk to us about what you use and why it's awesome. [more inside]
posted by DirtyOldTown at 12:27 PM PST - 38 comments

Why didn't I get the stimulus payment? How do I get it?

How do I get the $1,200 stimulus payment? It hasn't shown up yet, and the IRS tracker isn't giving me any results. [more inside]
posted by davidstandaford at 11:56 AM PST - 17 comments

How should I best prepare to move within the next 30 days?

We have a new lease that begins in 30 days and there will be a 15-day overlap where we will pay for two apartments (what fun!). Our currently place is your typical 2-bedroom apartment so we do not have a ton of extra space. We also have a toddler. How should we best utilize the next 30 days, taking into consideration normal move prep as well as COVID. [more inside]
posted by kmr at 11:32 AM PST - 12 comments

Get me out of New York! Much later! When it's safe!

The Current Situation in NYC has clarified that we are ready to not live in NYC anymore. Please sell me on your (U.S. or comparatively easy to emigrate to) city! I know MeFi gets these questions a lot—thank you for indulging me. [more inside]
posted by babelfish at 10:52 AM PST - 37 comments

Bunker parenting and scheduling sanity savers

We are a couple who are both working from home at rather demanding jobs. We count ourselves to be very lucky, both still be employed and healthy, but going slowly crazy managing parenting/teaching small kids and work. We have tried various schedules but without constant supervision it's hard to corral them. A lot of useless articles are filled with time-spending activities to do with your kids at home as if you had ample spare time. We feel bad since we are doing poorly at our jobs as well as parenting. We know most parents are in the same boat -- what tricks, websites, and methods have you found that has eased your lockdown life? We are not in a position to hire a live-in nanny. School and daycare are doing zoom meetings which is helpful but are more things to schedule during the day.
posted by benzenedream at 10:20 AM PST - 19 comments

Good resources for managing team members who may have ADHD?

I'm in an informal project management and mentoring role, where one of my team members has ADHD. What are your favorite resources or other tips for managing people with these abilities and challenges? [more inside]
posted by a device for making your enemy change his mind at 9:00 AM PST - 10 comments

Knitting filter: how to make stockinette stitch tighter

I seem to remember a technique that involved doing the WS purls differently and then the RS knits differently to put the yarn back in the correct orientation, and this resulted in purls with less fabric, thereby making the finished fabric tighter. But I can't find this online for the life of me. [more inside]
posted by baptismal at 8:43 AM PST - 7 comments

Why can't I un-archive this Facebook Group that I help moderate?

I am an assistant moderator of a Facebook group that serves a small, isolated community. I am logged in to Facebook, seeing my "Moderator" status (checked). I have my Adblock paused. I am not seeing any option to "un-archive" the group which gets archived every night. It's the 'classic' look Facebook. I should be seeing the "un-archive" option when I click the "MORE ..." below the group photo. But all it's offering me is "Find Support or Report Group" or "Create New Group". [more inside]
posted by philip-random at 8:28 AM PST - 3 comments

Why are my LEDs dim?

My microwave came with two LED boards for under-lighting, with 4 LEDs each. I used a hot air rework station and soldering iron to replace the horrible original 6000K LEDs with some nice 2700K LEDs Great! But one of the boards is now much dimmer than the other (they should both be very bright). All 4 LEDs on each board light up, and swapping their positions doesn’t make a difference. Any ideas on what could have gone wrong, or how to troubleshoot? Any hope of salvaging this without buying a new board and more replacement LEDs? [more inside]
posted by stopgap at 8:18 AM PST - 22 comments

Can I make something non-disgusting out of this disgusting turkey jerky?

After an unfortunate impulse buy, I have a costco-sized bag of turkey jerky that I can't force myself to eat. This one, to be precise. I hate wasting meat, especially in these times, but this stuff is foul. If I boil the crap out of it, could I make it into a tolerable stew or something, or would it keep its original flavour?
posted by randomnity at 8:05 AM PST - 17 comments

10 Pounds of Files in a 5 Pound Bag

My elderly but beloved Asus (ET2410IUTS i5 3.10 Hz 8G Ram) AIO system has run out of file space. I consolidated 1 TB of active files onto a 4.5 TB external drive. This left about 70GB of empty space on the factory drive. The system will not reboot unless the external drive is disconnected. After bootup, I can reconnect the external drive and everything, including performance speed, is fine. [more inside]
posted by Raybun at 7:46 AM PST - 4 comments

Block SMS on iOS based on content / keyword?

I have a constant spammer sending SMS to my work iPhone. It always contains the same unique, wrong name. Can I create a filter somewhere to block these so I don't ever have to see them again? [more inside]
posted by glonous keming at 7:40 AM PST - 2 comments

Your best vegan burgers that freeze

I want to make some vegan burgers to freeze. Do you have a kick-ass recipe? [more inside]
posted by FencingGal at 7:29 AM PST - 4 comments

Minim crotchet what?!! Surprise existence of non-slang vocabulary

If you are a English language reader and speaker, has there been a non-slang, non-obscure word you encountered as an adult that completely astounded you by its existence. I'm in my early forties and just came across the existence of semibreve, minim and crotchet in an Irish music academy's explanation of whole notes, half notes, and quarter notes. What!? It's been a week and I'm still reeling as to their existence. [more inside]
posted by spamandkimchi at 6:56 AM PST - 40 comments

Google PLEASE Lose That Number

Someone else seems to be trying to sign up for something with Google, and mistyping their number as mine. A lot. Is there a way to track them down? [more inside]
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 6:21 AM PST - 7 comments

Chapter books with illustrations on every page?

Looking for recommendations for bedtime stories for a five-year old, either an anthology or chapter books, but still with illustrations on every page? [more inside]
posted by skewed at 5:15 AM PST - 9 comments

Audio from YouTube

What is current best/safe practice for extracting audio from Youtube videos? [more inside]
posted by tavegyl at 1:38 AM PST - 11 comments

April 16

How to emphatically yet practically talk about not being able to travel

My spouse's parent is undergoing surgery later today in another country. There is a high probability the parent won't survive the surgery or the immediate recovery (very elderly, emergency surgery, very significant issue, parent has been subtly preparing my spouse for the worst for the past few weeks etc). Travel back to that country for my spouse is unlikely to happen due to all sorts of COVID complications. I need help on how to be empathetic to my spouse, but still find a way to pragmatically talk about how we deal with this. [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 6:47 PM PST - 20 comments

Non-sweet vegan baked goods

I'm looking for dessert/other baking recipes using flour but that do not call for sugar or other sweeteners. Like.. savory cake. Is there such a thing? To complicate things a bit, it must be vegan or easily veganized.
posted by cokelessrome at 3:12 PM PST - 23 comments

Stories about people in therapy

When doing new things, I like reading stories about other people having parallel experiences. As I'm about to start therapy, I'd like heartening book recommendations about people in therapy, how they progress in tackling their problems, and their relationship with the therapist. Preferably fictional or autobiographical (rather than journalistic or scientific). (And with the therapist as a helpful figure, please!) Thank you!
posted by Omnomnom at 2:31 PM PST - 20 comments

Decision looming

Which Moby-Dick audiobook should I get from Audible?
posted by These Premises Are Alarmed at 1:17 PM PST - 11 comments

Need a short message of good wishes

My library is thinking about doing a social media post next week to let our patrons know that we miss them, appreciate them, are thinking about them while we're all staying at home. The plan is to take a picture of 15-20 staff members, each one holding up a word or two on a piece of paper that, when put together, all spell out a message of hope/appreciation/inspiration. Normally I am not a great collector of inspirational quotes. Do you know of one that might work for such a thing?
posted by lyssabee at 1:05 PM PST - 6 comments

What's a cute transition from I to V on piano?

When practicing with the circle of fifths, I start with a Cmaj scale up and down, then I play the chords I, IV, I, V7, I. Then I move my hands to G, and repeat with a Gmaj scale, etc. What cute filler could I play between the C chord and the G chord to make it sound continous?
posted by derbyshire at 12:51 PM PST - 5 comments

Self care/hygiene products for tween girls?

My daughter is looking down the barrel of puberty, and has started talking about wanting skin care products, etc. but won't use mine and has no input as to what she actually would like to use. What are the 11-13 year old kids these days using on their skin/as deodorant/ anything else that I can think of, etc? (What's new in the world of menstrual products?) Cheers!
posted by gaspode at 12:50 PM PST - 27 comments

How did this scam work?

So I’m a customer of a major cell provider, the same one for 20 years. A few weeks ago I got notified that I had entered into a credit agreement for the purchase of two new iPhones at a carrier retail store in NYC. I had not done so. Issue is resolved with carrier but I can’t figure out how the scam worked. Any ideas? Details below the fold. [more inside]
posted by spitbull at 12:31 PM PST - 15 comments

Help me find an alarm clock!

My ancient Timex alarm clock died in November. The Sony I bought to replace it just crapped out. I would like some suggestions for finding a working replacement that doesn't utterly suck. [more inside]
posted by caution live frogs at 11:59 AM PST - 10 comments

Best, most economically efficient use for stimulus money

We just received our stimulus funds, and we're trying to figure out the best, most economically efficient use for it in terms of helping society generally. Financially we're fine and should continue to be, and we save quite a bit already, so we don't need to save it. So it seems like the choice is between donating or spending. But how do we decide what's best? [more inside]
posted by McPuppington the Third at 11:42 AM PST - 9 comments

Replacing tubes for Epiphone Valve Junior Combo amp.

Got my hands on a Epiphone Valve Junior guitar amp and a while back it suddenly stopped outputting any sound. It gets power, I replaced all the capacitors, looked for any broken leads-- it's as much as I knew how to do and replacing the tubes seems like a logical, inexpensive next step for an amp I just got for free. What sort of tubes would I need or what resources exist for a beginner learning about amps/replacing tubes?? Thanks!
posted by dr handsome at 11:29 AM PST - 7 comments

back pain from bike riding

Since the rona shutdown, I have been riding my bike a lot lately. More than I would have if the gym were open. It is a Cannondale hybrid. I ride mainly on the streets. [more inside]
posted by jtexman1 at 10:35 AM PST - 12 comments

How do I make a Kindle book with very simple interactive features?

I'm trying to make an ebook in indesign with very simple buttons which just reveal text when you click on them. I've made it as a fixed layout epub, which works perfectly, but I'll need to upload it to Amazon and I can't get it to work on Kindle. [more inside]
posted by Chenko at 10:03 AM PST - 2 comments

How to get a document notarized during social distancing?

In the upcoming week, I have some rental assistance documents that need to be notarized. Are notaries even available still? Can this service be provided digitally or through video conferencing somehow? Tampa Bay, Florida here.
posted by caveatz at 9:51 AM PST - 13 comments

Who are the authors who celebrate the banal?

After having spoken to people who've lived in war and other conflict zones, I always appreciated how lucky most of the Western world is enjoy simple freedoms such as going to a mall or enjoying a coffee in a cafe with relative peace of mind. [more inside]
posted by jacobean at 9:46 AM PST - 24 comments

Getting pet rats during a pandemic

I live alone in a studio apartment, and have decided that I really don't want to go through social distancing as the only mammal in my apartment. I have decided I want to get some pet rats. Help me think through what precautions I should take given the current pandemic. [more inside]
posted by bridgebury at 9:19 AM PST - 3 comments

Recommend a batch tool for converting 1000s of .TXT files to .PDF

I have a client who is a lawyer who received thousands of individual .txt files from his opposing counsel and wants them combined into a smaller set of PDF documents so he can review them more manageably. Is there a batch tool or other automation for Windows 10 you would recommend that can handle the large number of files? He does have Adobe Acrobat installed.
posted by briank at 8:13 AM PST - 10 comments

Zooming.... quietly

Help me troubleshoot a Zoom audio issue on an iPad? [more inside]
posted by NotMyselfRightNow at 7:11 AM PST - 6 comments

How to market a novel? And, I mean, how to market a novel NOW?

My debut novel, a queer supernatural romantic comedy, is being published in July. Hurray! ... But. I was already feeling a bit at sea in terms of what I can do, as an author, to help get the word out. And now, with the festivals and conventions I'd been scheduled at cancelled, the bookstores closed, and my social media savvy mediocre at best, I'm even more at a loss. What should I be doing? What's the best approach? Can an author, as opposed to the publisher, actually move the needle much on sales at all?
posted by kyrademon at 6:35 AM PST - 11 comments

Seeking a Knuckles the Echidna fanfic by 'uvilalalalala' (or similar)

A decade or so ago I read a Knuckles fanfic with a very recognisable autistic sensibility (numerically defining lots of speeds and distances etc). I remember that Porpentine was a big fan of it, and also linked to a video of the author playing an early RPG. I'm about 60% sure about the repeated last syllable in the author's name, but none of this is quite enough to find it again! Can anyone help?
posted by wattle at 4:43 AM PST - 2 comments

April 15

What should I consider before choosing a masters program?

So I've been in a sort of quagmire figuring in this out. I applied last year to several programs, I don't think I will attend to any of them because honestly I didn't know what I was doing and just went for whatever "looked right". I was hooked on machine learning just like most CS grads out there. I got a taste and then figured out that I don't care much for the field. [more inside]
posted by Tarsonis10 at 11:19 PM PST - 6 comments

Optimize my home dental regimen

I have TERRIBLE teeth. Despite brushing twice a day and flossing daily, every dentist I've ever had has eventually put me on a frequent cleaning schedule to keep the cavities at bay. These past couple of years I've spent thousands of dollars to fix things up after an 8 month gap (gasp!) between visits. I'm already overdue for my next cleaning and I have no idea when my next visit will be, for obvious reasons. Dentists of AskMe, though YANMD, what should I be doing to maximize my chances of getting through These Unprecedented Times with my teeth intact? [more inside]
posted by btfreek at 10:34 PM PST - 29 comments

Running shoe recommendations for haglunds deformity

I have haglunds deformity This means I can't wear any shoes with a rigid/structred heel counter without experiencing pain and blisters. I am currently needing new running shoes that will accomodate this problem. [more inside]
posted by MT at 9:40 PM PST - 5 comments

How to not obsess over coworker dynamic?

I really struggle with coworkers deviating from my idea of the values governing coworker behavior. I don't expect to be friends with everyone but I do expect people to not be rude, and to not treat people hugely differently unless there is bad blood or something. I have a complicated political situation and I need to get some support. [more inside]
posted by crunchy potato at 9:25 PM PST - 17 comments

Virtual Learning Help! ISO Video Making or Editing Program

I'm an educational sign language interpreter desperately trying to find resources to make our state's virtual learning accessible to my students. I'm looking for a program (either a video making program or an editing program, I think?) that will let me put an already existing video from the internet OR a document on one side of the video and let me record myself interpreting on the other side. Do you know of any programs I can try for this? More inside. [more inside]
posted by carlypennylane at 6:20 PM PST - 10 comments

What's the deal with the beds in Unorthodox?

I watched all of Unorthodox on Netflix last night and have spent the day chasing down explanations for the Hasidic practices represented in the show. The one I can't find anything on is Yanky and Esty's beds. Is this real--a matching set of headboards, but a bigger one for the man? I've never heard of such a thing.
posted by HotToddy at 5:47 PM PST - 2 comments

Why is it always "rotate right" for images and not "rotate left"?

Every app that I can think of that has a rotate button always orients the rotation clockwise. However, whenever I upload a photo that needs rotating, it always requires three clicks. It seems like it would make more sense to rotate left and require only one click from the user. Is there some kind of design thinking I'm overlooking here? [more inside]
posted by Roy Batty at 5:36 PM PST - 17 comments

I'm moving with or without my employer. How do I approach this?

I mostly relocated to my current city for work, and as in my last question, I'm looking to move on soon to a place that better fits me. The potential exists for me to transfer with my existing job, but I'm really going to go even if that doesn't pan out. But I'm not really sure how to have this conversation with my bosses/HR. [more inside]
posted by signondiego at 4:57 PM PST - 3 comments

Plant ID - Am I growing nettles?

Several of my garden containers are growing the same kind of plant (weed?) but before I chop them down I'd like to identify them. I think they may be nettles. I am in the San Francisco Bay area. [more inside]
posted by shoesietart at 4:53 PM PST - 16 comments

Where Can I Find Actual News & Not Spin & Talking Points

I'm sick of partisan news. How can I cut through the right/left noise and find out what is really going on? [more inside]
posted by Alvin80 at 3:23 PM PST - 29 comments

Fun in the sun

What is the most realistic fictional portrayal of a manned mission to Mercury’s surface? Unlikely bad things can happen in the story so long as the actual mission details and landing are plausible. Any medium is fine.
posted by michaelh at 2:04 PM PST - 8 comments

Noisy neighbors, COVID-19 complications

How do we address recurring noise issues with our neighbors without bringing worse consequences down on them by involving the landlord? [more inside]
posted by MetaFilter World Peace at 2:04 PM PST - 20 comments

Help My Mother Get Audiobooks

So, my mother is elderly with severe vision loss. She has been relying on a talking books program for audiobooks, but, due to the pandemic, they are closed. She started an Audible subscription, but didn't realize that she would need a device to play them and can't easily navigate the website. Tell me if my plan is stupid. Details under the fold. [more inside]
posted by GenjiandProust at 2:00 PM PST - 14 comments

Stickers on a postcard?

Can I put stickers on a postcard and still be pretty sure it will be delivered with a regular postcard stamp? Nothing with googly eyes, etc., just a couple standard flat stickers to spice things up. I am in the US and would rather not go inside a post office to ask right now.
posted by charmedimsure at 1:47 PM PST - 5 comments

What material should I pick if I don't want my bathroom counter to dye?

I love to color my hair. Tints, permanent you name it, I love changing things up, unfortunately my old granite bathroom counter top has not survived my hair adventures unscathed. I'm doing up my bathroom so what material should I be looking at for my bathroom counter top to avoid staining, if such a product exists, or be easy to clean or at least resist staining if such a magical dye repelling substance doesn't exist. [more inside]
posted by wwax at 1:10 PM PST - 7 comments

Package detour?

I ordered an item off of Etsy that supposedly shipped from Santa Ana, CA by USPS. I am in Illinois. I looked at the tracking info today and it showed that it was first received at a post office in Lihue, HI and is currently in a regional USPS facility in Honolulu. [more inside]
posted by Serene Empress Dork at 12:41 PM PST - 10 comments

Old, weird, good legal cases

I'm looking for pre-1700 legal cases that are interesting, or weird, or have challenging problems where both sides have good points. Got links, case names, blogs, online collections? Hit me up. [more inside]
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 12:19 PM PST - 12 comments

Can I eat/freeze this: sour milk edition

Barely used gallon of milk separating (but not exactly curdling) 2 days before the sell-by date... is it going to kill us? [more inside]
posted by DoubleLune at 12:17 PM PST - 6 comments

Can I reuse potting soil infused with old root hairs?

I have a patio garden with plants in pots/containers. Some of those pots (that used to have plants in them) have been idle for a while and I would like to return them to service, but in many cases the potting soil is matted together with fine root hairs from previous occupants (these hairs are generally of diameter well under a millimeter and are not circling the edges, but evenly distributed throughout). I can remove the soil all in one pot-shaped clump. It's easy to tear it up into smaller clumps, and I would guess the root hairs make up just a few percent of the soil mass, but they seem too fine and numerous to remove altogether. Is it possible to reuse this soil, and if so, what should I do to prepare it? [more inside]
posted by aws17576 at 11:43 AM PST - 14 comments

DIY Barista

I was recently given a 250g bag of President's Choice Espresso Forte. I don't like espresso, but I do love cappuccino. Is there any way I could use the espresso to make cappuccino at home without special equipment? I have a basic coffeemaker as well as the usual kitchen appliances/equipment: a stove, microwave, hand mixer, etc.
posted by orange swan at 11:28 AM PST - 13 comments

Easy and inexpensive tax filing program for self employed?

My accountant retired and I don't have the funds to hire someone. What is an easy tool to use to file my 2018 and 2019 taxes? [more inside]
posted by MountainDaisy at 11:18 AM PST - 7 comments

IRS Stumulus Payment Sent to Closed Account

Since filing taxes last year, I changed banks and closed the account that I've used for IRS direct deposits. Checking on the status of my stimulus payment says that the payment is scheduled to be delivered to the (now closed) account today. How can I update my bank info? Should I fill out the form for non-filers? Something else? The FAQs page doesn't address this.
posted by too bad you're not me at 11:05 AM PST - 7 comments

NYC unemployment filter: Switching to part-time

Can anyone help me, a complete ignoramus, navigate this unemployment dilemma? [more inside]
posted by cakelite at 10:44 AM PST - 3 comments

Looking for a eco friendly game.

It seems to me that all the games that involve open worlds are all about destroying the environment to build stuff. Minecraft is a perfect example, you cut down all the trees you can, dig nasty holes in the earth to get minerals, and kill everything. Is there are game where you restore a devastated environment? Or where you are fighting the creatures-human trying to destroy it? Imagine being a Minecraft creeper trying to stop the destruction of your home!
posted by KaizenSoze at 10:22 AM PST - 15 comments

Poem for a late cat

I remember, maybe 6-8 years ago, seeing someone write a poem for their late cat who was an asshole. I believe this was on a personal blog. I am fairly sure either the poem or the surrounding text said something about how their cat would have hated the idea of the rainbow bridge poem. What is this poem?
posted by jeather at 9:56 AM PST - 10 comments

Free mail merge tool for Gmail & Google Sheets?

Can you direct me to a FREE tool that will allow me to send a mail-merge message to an UNLIMITED number of recipients? The data required are in a Google Sheets document, and I need to send the message via Gmail. [more inside]
posted by Dr. Wu at 9:56 AM PST - 2 comments

What to do with stimulus money that isn't direly needed right now?

How should we save, invest, spend, or donate? Current family salaries and savings appear stable enough that we can weather a lot of short-term uncertainty during the COVID-19 pandemic. We certainly welcome the bump to secure our position - but also want to help our neighbors and community in thoughtful and effective ways. What ideas--or factors in deciding--do you have?
posted by GPF at 8:19 AM PST - 18 comments

Will adding these moving blankets to my recording booth kill me?

I ordered Stalwart moving blankets for the walls of my 4X4' recording booth to dampen sound, but upon arrival they have a warning about cancer and reproductive harm. I won't be in physical contact with them but should I be concerned about breathing the air of the confined space for an hour or so a day? (picture of the warning sticker)
posted by Mikey51 at 7:40 AM PST - 11 comments

Happy plant family?

Over the past week I have come into possession of: a hydrangea, not-yet-bloomed tulips, and 2 different cultivars of hosta. I would like to arrange them in a large pot. Will it work? [more inside]
posted by FirstMateKate at 7:36 AM PST - 9 comments

Access Mac account remotely without disrupting other user?

Is it possible to remotely login/control my Mac account without disturbing another user logged into a different account on the same machine? [more inside]
posted by modernnomad at 7:03 AM PST - 15 comments

Moving to a new apartment during pandemic- good idea or bad idea?

My 19 year old son wants to move on May 1st to a new apartment. Is this a safe and wise idea? [more inside]
posted by fourpotatoes at 7:00 AM PST - 15 comments

How to prevent neighbour knocking my wheelie bin over with their car?

I have two wheelie bins at the front of my garden. My neighbour has several times driven their car out of the adjacent parking space in their garden leaving clear tyre tracks and my bins lying on their sides. There is also a small dent in my car and I think flying bins are the cause. They were seriously verbally abusive in the past so I am really not feeling able to address this by talking to them. (Also we are in social distancing lockdown). What to do? [more inside]
posted by ElasticParrot at 6:46 AM PST - 18 comments

Why would this FB post be so much more popular than others?

My non-profit, social services employer has a Facebook page. Almost all the posts get about the same engagement. But this one got much more. How come? What data can I look at to figure this out? [more inside]
posted by RajahKing at 6:45 AM PST - 2 comments

therapy for complex issues

I have some questions about seeking online therapy for complex issues. What kind of therapy would be best suited for the issues I would like to address? [more inside]
posted by unicorn chaser at 6:34 AM PST - 3 comments

What's going on with my toenail?

It's sort of the opposite of an ingrown nail. Details below in case you'd rather not read about my toenails! [more inside]
posted by stillmoving at 6:32 AM PST - 8 comments

Driving with an expired out-of-state license in Illinois?

So, it's been a really hard year, and I just realized that I have an expired California driver's license while residing in Illinois. [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 6:12 AM PST - 10 comments

Online step aerobics on the hardest setting?

I've been really enjoying doing online exercise classes here in lockdown. It's got me thinking wistfully of the amazing step classes I used to go to 10, 15 years ago. These were not Les Mills Body Step, but fabulously intricate, dancey routines with complex choreography. It seems like Step is out of fashion these days, but is anyone creating online classes or an app that has this kind of content? I've googled, but haven't found much, and it mostly looks too plodding, repetitive and tame. I want something stylish, fast and difficult! [more inside]
posted by prune at 5:46 AM PST - 7 comments

Can President Trump unilaterally ban funding to the WHO?

Can President Trump unilaterally ban funding to the WHO? Where are the 'checks and balances'?
posted by lungtaworld at 5:23 AM PST - 6 comments

Zoom and bandwidth

I've been asked to join a zoom meeting tomorrow or on Friday. I haven't tried it, but I guess I can figure it out. What I really need to know is wether I can do it when using my bad phone connection for internet, or I should get myself to a place where I can access broadband? [more inside]
posted by mumimor at 4:06 AM PST - 15 comments

April 14

What is the etiquette around camera on/off in virtual movement classes?

I’ve been doing lots of Zoom stretching and Pilates while stuck indoors over the last three weeks. And I’m stumped. I’m fine to respect stated preferences but is it ok to keep the camera off and stay on mute if there’s no stated preference or direction from the instructor? Sometimes I just want to dance/stretch/savanassana like no one’s watching. [more inside]
posted by t0astie at 11:51 PM PST - 8 comments

no notice resignation

I need some advice on navigating a very likely exit from my current job. I received some verbal abuse today that was startling and demeaning from my supervisor, and I can't see myself (in any respect) continuing with the company, even for another day. [more inside]
posted by SpacemanStix at 11:08 PM PST - 19 comments

Global Music History Books and YouTube Channels

What books should I read and YouTube channels should I look at to study global music history? I learn best when things are really structured, so if I need to go order an old music history textbook from eBay I will at your recommendation. No podcasts or For Dummies style texts, however, please.
posted by Kitchen Witch at 10:26 PM PST - 2 comments

Beans, Greens + what magic ingredient(s)?

My standard shelter-in-place quick meal is this: Cut up a whole bunch of greens (kale, collard greens, chard), sauté an onion and some garlic, then throw it all into the Instant Pot at 30 minutes on high pressure. After it's done, I add a can of beans. It's starting to get old. What else can I add to my beans & greens to make it interesting? Assume I want to keep throwing it into the Instant Pot. I'm not vegetarian but I'm (gasp) sick of bacon. [more inside]
posted by rogerroger at 10:06 PM PST - 27 comments

Frequent intermittent audio rumble plagues my Mac Mini

My Mac Mini (late 2012) intermittently makes a sort of rumbling sound which *seems* to come from the internal speaker. This noise seems to be unconnected to whether other audio is being played through the Mac's system. The speakers plugged into the headphone jack are Creative desktop speakers with a subwoofer on the floor. Nothing plugged into mic jack. The only audio devices showing on the System Preferences are the built-in ones (headphone and mic jacks and HDMI). Any clues? [more inside]
posted by ademack at 9:38 PM PST - 3 comments

Re-learning to knit

I learned some very basic knitting skills and finished a few projects about 15 years ago, and I've barely touched my needles and yarn since. Now that I'm spending so much time inside, and I've eaten most of my Easter candy, how can I re-learn to knit? [more inside]
posted by gladly at 6:43 PM PST - 20 comments

Very specific recipe suggestions

I'm not sure how to phrase this best, but hopefully my examples will help clarify. I'm looking for recipes like Chocolate Caramel Matzo Toffee or The Pioneer Woman's Holiday Bacon Appetizers. In both of those recipes, there is a cracker base where the base gets soaked with fat or caramel, and then the soaked base gets crispy during the baking process. I love that combination but I can't think of any other recipes that follow that formula. Thanks for any ideas that come to mind!
posted by Neely O'Hara at 6:40 PM PST - 11 comments

Word game involving linking similar-sounding words by definitions?

Inspired by a recent Twitter conversation – What's this sort of word-game where you link similar-sounding words by their definitions? My family has played it, often on long car rides, and I've seen many Twitter threads of it... my earliest memory of it is, I think, some TV show for kids, but I'm not sure if it was supposed to be educational or funny. [more inside]
posted by The otter lady at 6:23 PM PST - 5 comments

What are the epidemiological side effects of mass social distancing?

I’m curious since people in a lot of places all over are keeping far enough apart to slow the spread of a really contagious disease if it is possible anything will happen to other diseases as “collateral damage.” Might we accidentally wipe out a few strains of rhinovirus, for example? Is there any documentation of this happening in previous periods of quarantine during epidemics?
posted by Gymnopedist at 5:16 PM PST - 14 comments

"Let's cheers": is that a thing?

I have always thought of "Cheers!", in a drinking context, as the word/exclamation you give after someone gives a toast. Is it also something people typically use as a verb to indicate they're going to drink to, or honor through drinking, something or someone, by saying "Let's cheers to X" or "Let's cheers X"? [more inside]
posted by mistersix at 4:57 PM PST - 30 comments

Featured Photos in a Facebook Event

How do I control the photos that appear in a Facebook event's page? The event is being virtually hosted by a business page. There are photos from events past that I don't want associated with the virtual event I am hosting that are appearing in the Photos section of the event under the event description. Can we choose the photos that appear there? Can we turn them off? [more inside]
posted by jeoc at 4:12 PM PST - 3 comments

I'm a walking barometer and I don't want to be

For years, I have felt absolutely awful on days where it rains or snows. The awfulness begins hours before the rain or snow, irrespective of whether or not I know it's going to rain or snow. How can I feel less awful? [more inside]
posted by brook horse at 3:01 PM PST - 9 comments

Shut-in project: learn more about American history

Difficultly level: not a good autodidact. [more inside]
posted by less of course at 2:39 PM PST - 12 comments

What happens to menstruation when it is paused?

I've had my periods interrupted twice in my life. First time was when I started college with drastically different food and sleep schedules -- I missed them for three months straight, and had them return (for good) when I went home for break. Second time was when I got pregnant and breastfed. Both times, I noticed that the period returned on approximately the day (+/- 1) that it would have with my 28-day cycle, starting from the last period many months earlier. Is this a thing, or am I reading into a coincidence? [more inside]
posted by redlines at 2:27 PM PST - 9 comments

tea...but make it slightly more fun

Which brands of tea have fun things written on the labels of the teabags? [more inside]
posted by aaanastasia at 1:24 PM PST - 4 comments

Has anyone calculated analogy ranking US income brackets & country GDP?

I was considering making an analogy between the income brackets in the USA and the GDP ranks of the countries of the world. So that you could say, "If the United States were the world, and you make $x, then you, by analogy, would be Honduras." Have you ever seen a chart like that or know of datasets that could easily make that comparison? [more inside]
posted by straight at 1:10 PM PST - 4 comments

I want a Zoom webinar that is also a Zoom meeting

In the non-virtual world, I’m involved in a lot of events where there are two to four people talking on stage, followed by interaction with the audience, and between audience members (eg: we ask people to talk to the people sitting near them about what they just heard). I wonder if there’s an online tool that can replicate this. Zoom is frustratingly close. But from what I understand, there are two separate products, "meetings"and "webinars" which each do part of what I want but not all of it. [more inside]
posted by PersonAndSalt at 12:53 PM PST - 4 comments

Historic, cultural, or famous distances, with podcasts?

I am starting to walk more for fitness and I like the idea of walking a famous route or place, along with listening to a podcast or audio-book that fits. [more inside]
posted by dstopps at 12:16 PM PST - 6 comments

I thought flowers would be cheerful. I don't know a thing about flowers.

Taking advantage of our florist's pay and then pick up (no contact) service, I purchased some pansies. Now suddenly it's been colder the usual (40 degrees F today) and even the net says our last frost could be as late 4/27. What is the best way to keep these babies healthy until it's warm enough to plant/frost time is over?
posted by intrepid_simpleton at 12:16 PM PST - 10 comments

What are my mother's health risks during COVID-19?

My 80-year old mother is scheduled to start chemotherapy at the end of the month. She lives in NYC, in Manhattan. Please help me understand her risk of contracting and dying from COVID-19. [more inside]
posted by cardamom at 12:14 PM PST - 9 comments

TV From Home

Can someone explain/point a good article on how the shows produced from home are being put together? Examples are John Krasinki's Some Good News on youtube, or SNL At Home night? Are the actors taking clips and sending them via imessage to a production company? I'm interested in how much the workflow might change from 'regular' tv?
posted by sandmanwv at 10:58 AM PST - 8 comments

I don't have a gas grill. Do I want one? What does one do with one?

Inspired by this AskMe. If you have a gas grill: what do you do with it? I already have a charcoal barbeque for cooking outside and a gas stove for cooking inside and a camping stove for camping (if we're ever allowed to do that again). Is there something delicious and fun I could be doing if I had a gas grill? We are omnivores. None of us are particularly into recreational cooking, but we do like eating burgers outside in the summer. [more inside]
posted by The corpse in the library at 10:31 AM PST - 32 comments

How do I Reverse Hack the Election?

I'm considering building a consortium of individuals who will spread True Memes to Combat Trump and the Extreme Right in a manner similar to Russian or other Election Monkeywrenchers. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, probably not video. How did Russians hack the election; what can I learn and where can I learn it? Budget: 0, of course. [more inside]
posted by Mom at 10:28 AM PST - 9 comments

Can I get a housecall for my cat in Seattle?

My cat's health has been deteriorating the past couple months, and we've reached the point where my vet is suggesting euthanasia. Going to the clinic really stresses the little guy out, and with the pandemic, I wouldn't even be able to go inside with him. Are there any mobile vets who would come to my apartment in Seattle so he can have a more peaceful end of life?
posted by Cogito at 9:51 AM PST - 8 comments

Best, simple backyard grill

I'm looking for a simple gas grill. I'd like to prioritize high-quality construction and components over additional features. [more inside]
posted by andythebean at 9:10 AM PST - 10 comments

Where to start with Gene Wolfe?

What it says on the tin. [more inside]
posted by xenization at 8:21 AM PST - 23 comments

Delivery for goat meat/mutton/lamb?

How do I get goat meat (I am open to mutton or lamb too) delivered to my house? Normally, I buy about 5 pounds a month of skin-on, cubed goat meat for stews. The nearby Asian and Latin markets where I usually buy the meat have temporarily shut down due to Covid-19. I am in Tampa Bay, Florida and I can also drive somewhere for a pick-up point. Just really not interested in going to a grocery store right now.
posted by caveatz at 8:01 AM PST - 4 comments

Press play to start

I'm looking for virtual dates to go on with my girlfriend. [more inside]
posted by k8lin at 8:00 AM PST - 8 comments

How can I get out of having to use a webcam at work?

How can I get out of having to use a webcam at work? My work is sending me a webcam. I cry off and on all day these days and they will NOT be kind/sympathetic about it if they find out. [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 7:59 AM PST - 36 comments

Nervous About SNRI Taper

I have had problems with tapering in the past. Now I have to get off an SNRI. Details inside [more inside]
posted by kbbbo at 7:38 AM PST - 10 comments

Non-variable recommended drug dosage

The recommended daily dosage of cetirizine (Zyrtec) is 10mg, whether you're a 40 lb six-year-old or a 300 lb adult. How can this be? Does it really have a similar effect?
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 6:57 AM PST - 6 comments

Looking for Dutch(?) Holocaust fiction book

I remember reading a dutch, I believe, novel about a young man who witnesses a Jewish neighbor outside and the family next door doesn't act to save him. But years later he finds out that they weren't Nazi sympathizers but actually already had a Jew in hiding in their house already. I believe this is a classic of Holocaust literature but the name escapes me. Thanks.
posted by captainscared at 5:41 AM PST - 4 comments

Resurfacing outdoor table?

We have an outdoor Crate and Barel table that the surface is separating on. We didn't care that much for the surface and want to put something down that will be long lasting, weather resistant and good looking. It looks like some kind of composite board, very hard, grey with flecks of white in it. image one closer image Seems like a very good surface to start with. Just want to choose the best material (paint, varnish, epoxy, etc) to cover and seal.
posted by silsurf at 4:30 AM PST - 7 comments

Using an Echo Show as a baby/video monitor without timeout

I want to use an Echo Show as a video monitor for a camera for periods of time up to 1-2hours in duration. Trying to do this with a Blink camera doesn't work as the live view times out after 5 minutes. [more inside]
posted by Simon_ at 4:26 AM PST - 2 comments

My therapist appears to have become a conspiracy theorist overnight

I've been seeing the same therapist for about 8 years now, and she's worked wonders for me. However, our most recent session gave me real cause for concern (cut for pandemic anxiety). How do I address this in our next session? [more inside]
posted by six sided sock at 3:45 AM PST - 20 comments

April 13

Tall Skinny Guy, Short Fat Guy

Is there a name for the trope of having a pair of characters in a movie or tv show where a tall skinny guy and a short fat guy are either posing as, or actually are, workmen using bureaucratic excuses to gain access to a home? [more inside]
posted by Lokheed at 8:58 PM PST - 24 comments

Date night during coronavirus

Help me plan a special date night! I'd like to drop off a package with all the materials for a creative, socially distant date. [more inside]
posted by lucy.jakobs at 8:25 PM PST - 18 comments

How to ruminate productively?

For years I have thought about a person I know whose life is more precarious than mine in ways that are not really solvable, but mentally I try to solve their problems anyway. It's like this person's life is a puzzle that I am trying to solve, but I really don't have any inputs from them other than the occasional "hey, this new thing happened" I'd like to ruminate about this, but productively. [more inside]
posted by perdhapley at 7:56 PM PST - 6 comments

Please recommend a plant light that goes in a standard socket

I am looking for a plant growth light for veggies indoors, I am running up against all kinds of technical terms and designs that don't work for me, details within. [more inside]
posted by Rufous-headed Towhee heehee at 7:40 PM PST - 10 comments

Pandemic Anxiety, End of Life Affairs, and Moms, oh my

I want to make sure that my mother has all of her end-of-life directives, passwords, and wishes in order, but I don't have the emotional bandwidth to be helpful right now. Are there low cost services that I could enlist to guide her through this process? [more inside]
posted by ajarbaday at 7:02 PM PST - 7 comments

Static On the Receiving End of FB Live

I've been teaching yoga classes on FB Live using my Chromebook. The classes went fine until Friday when all the watchers could hear was static. Same thing happened this evening. Is it the Chromebook? What can be happening? How can I troubleshoot this issue?
posted by goalyeehah at 6:49 PM PST - 4 comments

PC Games for the Perpetually Dizzy

Wow, there have been a lot of "what game should I play now that coronavirus..." questions here lately. Here's another one. Help me game too! [more inside]
posted by Gray Duck at 4:51 PM PST - 18 comments

Looking for great music shows

I'm looking for live streaming or podcast style music shows. The perfect show would: feature a unique style of music, played as a whole set, with high quality audio, minor explicit content, and a host who loves the music. Is it the weekly classic banjo show? Maybe it features 80s pop from South Africa, or the freshest Japanese hip hop. A few examples inside. [more inside]
posted by rebent at 4:36 PM PST - 9 comments

Good essays on the genocides of the 1990s from a leftist perspective?

I identify as a leftist anti-imperialist. However, I struggle to reconcile this mindset against the genocides in Rwanda and Srebrenica. [more inside]
posted by zeusianfog at 3:53 PM PST - 6 comments

74yo dad bleeding from stomach in NYC. Do we go to a hospital?

My dad was hit by a truck in October. One of his vertebra was fractured. To manage the pain, he took Advil every day. In early February, he started having trouble with his digestion. Every time he eats something, he has terrible diarrhea, and he wakes up every night with terrible reflux. Today, he tried to pass gas and felt liquid coming out. It was a lot of blood. After a while, he went back to the toilet because his stomach hurt, and more blood came out. What do we do? [more inside]
posted by saltypup at 3:38 PM PST - 37 comments

Fluorescent light ballast replacement

What would be an appropriate replacement for this fluorescent lamp ballast? Was installed about 15-20 years ago. I need four, each powers two lamps. I'm assuming symbols on the left are for neutral, ground and live. How concerned should I be that it's got no red or blue or yellow wires? Do the three white plastic terminals on each end accept bare wire and clamp it down or should I plan on cutting and splicing during replacement? These light fixtures are on the same circuit as my home office, so I've not had the time to turn it off at the breaker and fully remove and cap to inspect further.
posted by now i'm piste at 1:39 PM PST - 11 comments

Recording Multiple Audio Sources on an iPad

So, I have an iPad Air (3rd Generation), and have been getting back into making goofy electronic music while socially distancing. I've run into an issue with my setup, though, and would like some guidance on how to proceed. [more inside]
posted by SansPoint at 1:25 PM PST - 9 comments

Responsible Shopping During Covid-19?

What is the most responsible / ethical way to purchase things during the pandemic? [more inside]
posted by wym at 12:51 PM PST - 19 comments

PTSD pain

I got assaulted and my body is pain even though I'm not physically injured. Advice is welcome. [more inside]
posted by Sterros at 12:15 PM PST - 11 comments

Best PC game of the decade

So, like many people. I got a bit of unexpected free time and already watched all the Netflix I can stomach, so I want to get back into gaming. [more inside]
posted by SweetLiesOfBokonon at 11:30 AM PST - 22 comments

Baking with herbs

Recently I've been enjoying baking sweet recipes that combine herbs and fruit in unique and complementary ways. I have made rosemary, olive oil, and dark chocolate cake, and lemon thyme and strawberry shortbreads. I would be interested in finding more recipes from this genre. Recipes for savory baked goods using herbs would also be fine, but I'm primarily looking for ways to combine fruit and herbs. I have mint, thyme, basil, and parsley in my garden, but I'm open to others as well.
posted by unstrungharp at 10:51 AM PST - 19 comments

hey siri, google "doors under rich person lawn gilded age what do"

What are the doors built into the retaining wall(?) at the bottom of the lawn called, and what are they for?
posted by Grandysaur at 10:15 AM PST - 12 comments

Mediator/lawyer in MA for unmarried/queer couple splitting up

A dear friend is splitting up with her partner and needs help. I'd really like to help her by finding a mediator or lawyer (preferably in the Boston area, but anywhere in MA is okay) who has experience with or specializes in working with queer/unmarried people splitting up. Details within. [more inside]
posted by tangosnail at 9:14 AM PST - 2 comments

What happens to a digital thermometer reading when the battery is old?

Trying to figure out if I've got the rona or hypochondria. [more inside]
posted by unannihilated at 8:39 AM PST - 22 comments

House/Apt hunting during the pandemic

Have you recently looked at houses/apartments and moved? What did you learn or suggest for both looking and on moving? [more inside]
posted by OnTheLastCastle at 7:56 AM PST - 7 comments

What can I do to feel that the UK is my home country?

In spite of living there more than half my life, I feel I can't call it my home and it seems to be down to the feeling that I don't deserve to. How can I change this? [more inside]
posted by gadha at 7:37 AM PST - 13 comments

Help me come up with an acronym that helps me combat bored eating!

I struggle with emotional eating at the best of times, and sheltering in place has been pushing all of my buttons about food, boredom and deprivation. I'd like to come up with an acronym like HALT (Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired) that I can pull out when I'm tempted to eat when I'm not hungry. However, I'm not coming up with anything. Given the emotions I feel that are associated with this behavior, can you help me come up with something better than "bonefruited"? [more inside]
posted by shirobara at 6:34 AM PST - 21 comments

Houseplant pest ID please

What is this houseplant pest please? [more inside]
posted by rrose selavy at 6:19 AM PST - 6 comments

Why does my iPad see Gmails that my PCs don't?

On my iPad (Pro), I am able to receive certain messages in Gmail that do NOT show up when I check them on one of my two PCs--a desktop and a laptop. I've gone through the settings, filters, but can't figure this out. [more inside]
posted by zardoz at 2:37 AM PST - 10 comments

Statistics on UK manual braking habits saving lives?

Before the coronavirus, I was learning to drive in England (thanks, Metafilter for recommending that I switch instructors). When we came to a stop at a crosswalk, the first thing we had to do is "make it safe": to pull the manual brake up, protecting pedestrians ahead of us in case of a rear-end collision. My buddy back in the States, however, insists this is ridiculous and refuses to believe that braking like this saves lives. Is there any safety data out there that I could cite to uphold the UK braking style? [more inside]
posted by johngoren at 2:26 AM PST - 38 comments

Plant ID - Obscure very short grass at Santa Monica SMURFF

In 2011 I managed to get a tour of the Santa Monica Urban Runoff Recycling Facility SMURFF (which I can't recommend enough for when we have normal again) and while there saw a bed of what I was told was a true grass (but I think may be a sedge) growing as a monoculture and acting as backup for an osmosis system. [more inside]
posted by unearthed at 12:56 AM PST - 5 comments

Makers of metafilter, how do you not hate-pick your own products?

I'm making a short run of books and all I can see towards is every flaw. These are partly inherent to the variable nature of the materials and process, and partly being The Worst Craftsperson In The World. Rationally, I can see that someone not in the same field will go yay, but all I see is every tiny flaw writ large. This is why I hate handmaking presents although I love receiving them. Magnify this a thousand times for anything handmade for sale. How do you distinguish between real flaws and "only visible to you" flaws?
posted by dorothyisunderwood at 12:17 AM PST - 15 comments

Shipping ecofriendly packaging NZ to US still ecofriendly?

These fluoridated toothpaste tabs are packed in recyclable aluminum cans, but must be shipped from New Zealand to me in the USA. Is international post efficient at a per-item level or is this wildy inefficient compared to throwing away regular toothpaste tubes?
posted by derbyshire at 12:05 AM PST - 7 comments

April 12

What is this bush?

Can you tell what this bush is? Sorry, this is my best picture. [more inside]
posted by ancient star at 9:12 PM PST - 8 comments

D&D and my 7 year old nephew

My 7 year old nephew (in whose house I am currently living) reeeeeeeeeally wants to read the Dungeons & Dragons Player Handbook. He has the reading skills (can read The Lord of the Rings and The Silmarillion on his own). Is there anything in there that might be inappropriate for a seven year old? Inappropriate in this case means sex and drugs more than anything else. Fantasy violence is okay (otherwise there’d be no point, right?).
posted by ocherdraco at 8:43 PM PST - 9 comments

Competitive word games for the distant

When my large family (70-ish parents through teen/tween niblings, but mostly my adult siblings) gets together we play things like Boggle, Scrabble, Balderdash, Bananagrams, Code Words, Apples to Apples, charades, Jackbox games, etc. We all live in different time zones. What mobile/web games should we play now, all together or in smaller groups of 2 or more? [more inside]
posted by doift at 8:40 PM PST - 3 comments

Another game question for the covid pandemic (old-fashioned edition)

I have looked at the answers to recent game questions. But I haven’t found what I am hoping for. More inside. [more inside]
posted by NotLost at 8:29 PM PST - 9 comments

Please help identify a B&W Conan magazine issue

Somewhere between 1985 and 1987 I bought an issue of a Conan comic where the main story was that he met a woman who thought he'd looked at her longingly after a fight in an arena, but he had to tell her that his look was just one of relief and that he wasn't even really looking at her. [more inside]
posted by interrobang at 8:21 PM PST - 4 comments

Unconventional travel on YouTube

I've started to get into watching travel videos on YouTube and it's really fun! I'm looking for more. In particular, can you recommend channels or videos about visiting places that are not common tourist destinations? [more inside]
posted by capricorn at 8:02 PM PST - 13 comments

Expired canned Dulce de Leche

I discovered some cans of La Lechera Dulce de Leche at the back of my pantry. Yum! However, the bottom of the can says Best Before Sept 2016. Still edible or certain death in a can? [more inside]
posted by Joh at 7:22 PM PST - 14 comments

Song about home

Help me find this song about home that I don't remember much about. [more inside]
posted by Former Congressional Representative Lenny Lemming at 7:02 PM PST - 2 comments

Can I eat this? Avocado with cut and Covid risk.

I had groceries delivered two days ago and discovered that the avocado I bought as a cut in it. Usually I wash produce in soap and water. However, I'm worried that the cut means that any potential Covid contamination couldn't be washed off, and that possible virus particles could be in the avocado itself.
posted by daybeforetheday at 6:18 PM PST - 10 comments

What's the story on the updated Dymaxion Car?

Buckminster Fuller designed an automobile he called the Dymaxion Car in 1933. Only three were built. A couple images of an updated, or custom version appear occasionally, without any attribution I've seen. I'd like to know if it's real, and if so, who built it. Not interested in exact replicas of the original, although several of those have been constructed. [more inside]
posted by Rash at 5:52 PM PST - 3 comments

Identify/translate Arabic cassette tape

I was given this tape by a bus driver in Morocco 30 years ago. Can anyone translate so I can identify the artist, etc? Thank you!
posted by gryphonlover at 4:48 PM PST - 5 comments

Books in monsteries, boarding schools, and other confined locations

It's RecommendationFilter time! For some reason I have always loved books set in semi-confined spaces like monasteries (Name of the Rose, Cadfael series, Anathem, Canticle for Leibowitz) and boarding schools or old universities (HP, Secret History, Instance of the Fingerpost), cathedrals and ancient castles (much Gothic fiction). I don't know why! But I'd like more. [more inside]
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 4:47 PM PST - 35 comments

I'd love to give you my money, but how do I?

Hypothetically, if someone in the USA who's in the top 1% of net worth woke up this morning and wanted to give $500,000 to their favorite charity as soon as possible, where would they get the $ from, would they just go to their checking account? [more inside]
posted by fizzix at 3:32 PM PST - 17 comments

How do I potato yeast?

Recently, due to the dearth of baking yeast on any store shelf anywhere (not that I go out often to look) I followed the instructions using this recipe, for creating yeast from potatoes. Now, looking at the results, I am not sure I did it right. I don't want to attempt to make bread with it if I have to throw a mess out because it won't rise. Bakers of MeFi, please enlighten me. [more inside]
posted by Crystal Fox at 12:04 PM PST - 7 comments

Which non-feline animals or creatures does your cat remind you of?

And do you create nicknames for your cats based on those animals? A zillion years ago when I adopted a tuxedo cat, I called her killer penguin for obvious reasons of color pattern. My current set of cats remind me a lot of dragons, unrelated to coloring or pattern. Do other people do this? And what animals? Apologies for chatfilter, I've decided to obsess over this in lieu of other things today.
posted by spamandkimchi at 11:38 AM PST - 63 comments

Do you know a delightful math YouTube video?

Tell me about math videos that are delightful, intriguing or funny! [more inside]
posted by MangoNews at 10:53 AM PST - 25 comments

Why do I go cold on the warmest people?

Psychologists and armchair counsellors of MeFi, please help me unpack this hangup I have. Other people’s kindness feels intrusive, specifically when the kindness is objectively appropriate and from my closest people. [more inside]
posted by shocks connery at 10:47 AM PST - 28 comments

What's the best scheduling program for the quarantine?

Okay it's time for every day NOT to be Quaraday. I need to make a daily calendar and apple isn't really great for it. What do you find is the best calendar for being productive and addressing a bunch of tasks in different areas - writing, fitness, etc?
posted by rileyray3000 at 10:45 AM PST - 6 comments

Adding a resistance band to my rowing machine?

I'd like to increase the resistance on my rowing machine so that I can get a better leg workout. Is that plausible or will it lead to injury? [more inside]
posted by Eudaimonia at 9:57 AM PST - 2 comments

Could someone explain the variables of this equation to me?

Modelling an exponential curve to fit a time history of tree sway data: a*exp(x*(t-t0))*cos(w*(t-t0)*pi/180)+b+c*(t-t0) [more inside]
posted by Alex Haist at 9:39 AM PST - 6 comments

Why can't I clean my N95 orphan mask in the microwave?

I have a lonely N95 mask I bought a long time ago for a project that involved plaster dust I didn't want to breathe in, but I never used it. So now I have an N95 mask. I've used it once to go outside in this pandemic (NYC). [more inside]
posted by DMelanogaster at 9:23 AM PST - 18 comments

When to seek non-corona medical care

Testicle lump details below the cut. [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 9:14 AM PST - 5 comments

Support for Those Impacted by Mental Illness During a Pandemic

My brother is dangerously mentally ill. What kind of resources are available to his family during this time? [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 9:14 AM PST - 8 comments

The Art of Japan

I'd like book recommendations for the study of Japanese aesthetics. [more inside]
posted by all the light we cannot see at 6:44 AM PST - 10 comments

Website recommendations for life skills?

I'm looking for websites with information about any sustainable/frugal living skills, readable information rather than videos. The biggest thing I want to avoid is websites that are largely about what to buy, I'm trying to get in the mindset of being creative and working with what I have when possible. I'd love recommendations for websites with an ethos along those lines too! [more inside]
posted by Eyelash at 6:33 AM PST - 6 comments

Is there such a thing as a video looping app?

Is there an Android app that'll let me record video of myself playing an instrument, then record another video alongside it with accompaniment on another instrument? [more inside]
posted by srednivashtar at 6:05 AM PST - 6 comments

Finest formulation for faux fromage blanc?

I’m cooking something later today that calls for fromage blanc, which I don’t have on hand. It’s a key component in the recipe (along with crème fraîche, which I do have) so I’d like to substitute it with something that’s as close as possible to the real thing. Fortunately I come from a family of dairy fiends, so the following are at my disposal when concocting a suitable replacement: ricotta cheese, fat-free Greek yogurt, American-style cream cheese, heavy whipping cream, sour cream, buttermilk, semi-skim (2%) milk.
posted by theory at 5:24 AM PST - 10 comments

Italian Easter Egg Clue Needed!

I'm setting an Easter Egg hunt around the house. It consists of (badly) rhyming clues / riddles / puzzles describing the location of the next one. I'm trying to make the hunt so that each person in the house finds a clue that only they can solve. As there's an Italian living here, setting one in Italian seems like a good bet, though unfortunately I can't speak any! Could someone on internet could help out? [more inside]
posted by Ned G at 2:12 AM PST - 1 comment

What should I watch next? super picky and demanding edition

Sorry as I know this is a perennial question but I hope you're all bored enough to maybe help! I'm looking for something to take my mind off things at the mo and make me feel good and happy too. However I am ridiculously picky and have the world's shortest attention span! So I wonder - could you recommend something on UK Netflix or Amazon Prime that I'd like...? [more inside]
posted by low_horrible_immoral at 1:38 AM PST - 20 comments

April 11

Will my kid be Jewish?

Help me understand the ancient rules for a modern world [more inside]
posted by gillianr at 9:24 PM PST - 8 comments

When someone dies, you lose the memories they have of you.

I came across someone who said, basically, "When someone dies, you lose the memories they have of you, and you lose the part of your identity that was external to you, and kept within that person." It had to have been in the last two years. Does anyone remember this essay? It feels especially relevant as so many memories are being erased right now.
posted by mecran01 at 9:10 PM PST - 9 comments

Gallic and teutonic song

I'm looking for recommendations for popular music sung in the languages of Goethe or Molière. [more inside]
posted by bertran at 6:06 PM PST - 13 comments

Actually good hot cross buns

I am done being disappointed by hot cross buns. Clearly the potential is there. Where is my actually good hot cross bun recipe?
posted by HotToddy at 5:10 PM PST - 11 comments

Duck geniuses of Metafilter, save me

I have received a surprise whole duck from my local farm. I look to you all for the tastiest way to process it. I'm game for anything but want to try to use every part somehow. Tell me your duck recipes! [more inside]
posted by range at 5:04 PM PST - 15 comments

Can I eat this unopened skordalia that's 3 days past expiration?

I love Greek skordalia spread. I have an unopened plastic tub of a pound of it that has been refrigerated since delivery on March 30, 12 days ago. It has a "best before" area on top that's blank, but a sticker on the bottom that says "EX. DAT 04/08/20." Today is 3 days past that. The only ingredients: potatoes, garlic, extra-virgin olive oil, and salt. All those ingredients are inert and long-lasting, and I feel like they might be OK past the best by/expiration date would suggest. Should I or can I eat this?
posted by limeonaire at 3:53 PM PST - 12 comments

Why won't my cat sit on my lap?

My cat won't sit on my lap, even though she will sit on everyone else's lap. Is there some cat cue I'm missing? Or is she mad because I belong to another cat? [more inside]
posted by christinetheslp at 3:52 PM PST - 18 comments

PPP Me or Leave it Be?

Should I refrain from applying for the Paycheck Protection Program loan for my sole proprietorship because I have personal savings and "don't need it" as much as others, even though I have lost all of my confirmed work due directly to Covid-19? This my entire business and my only income, as I am not W2 or an employee of any other business. [more inside]
posted by Bunglegirl at 2:47 PM PST - 17 comments

Where did my article go?

I was looking for an article I wrote for Salt Lake City Weekly in 2004. It was titled, "NAACP: What's that Spell?" It revealed a lot of hard feelings felt by African-Americans about the organization at the time and focused much attention on its leaders. It was the feature story with accompanying cover artwork. I have hard copies of the issue. [more inside]
posted by CollectiveMind at 2:28 PM PST - 4 comments

Panic Making Tamales

I have a fairly large quantity of mole powders from Mexico. I want to turn them into pastes/sauces, but strangely enough can't find a recipe. Can you help? [more inside]
posted by brookeb at 1:27 PM PST - 5 comments

Kink Question

I have gotten switchy in my old age. As a treat after it is safe to travel again, a former lover and I are planning to meet up so I can top him. I hope to gag him at some point during our play session but he has asthma. Can anyone recommend a safe gag to use for someone with potential respiratory problems? [more inside]
posted by Bella Donna at 12:26 PM PST - 6 comments

Help me get things delivered *not* by the Postal Service

We are staying in a friend's house in a rural area. USPS only delivers to PO boxes. For health reasons, we are very intensely quarantining and going to the post office is a non-starter. Amazon (for better or worse) has been our go to for delivery but they don't specify which mail carrier they are using and a number of packages have not arrived. Basically, we need UPS, Fed-Ex or another option. Can you recommend options for books and home-goods that you know do NOT use the US Postal Service? Thank you! [more inside]
posted by jeszac at 11:53 AM PST - 8 comments

Otherwise in good shape—why does biking uphill make me want to pass out?

I've biked all my life, and all my life hills have made me feel faint. What's up with that? [more inside]
posted by nebulawindphone at 11:02 AM PST - 31 comments

Securing posters when wall goo won't work

I'm turning my basement into an office. [more inside]
posted by Rumi'sLeftSock at 11:01 AM PST - 9 comments

weighted blanket recommendations

There seem to be a lot of unreliable ratings on some of the weighted blanket websites. Do you have a weighted blanket that you really like? How heavy is it compared to your body weight? If it matters, this is for a young person who weighs about 120 pounds.
posted by nantucket at 10:54 AM PST - 13 comments

Fill my life (well, iPhone) with music, please!

Hi! This feels like it must be a dumb question, but I haven’t been able to figure it out, so I am hoping you can handhold me through this. How do I get my large music library from my external drive to my iPhone? [more inside]
posted by prefpara at 10:49 AM PST - 10 comments

What playset is so awesome that it warrents its own room?

I have 2 sensory/non neurotypical preschool boys aged nearly 4 and 5. We have a large attic space (the engine room) where we have housed a huge thomas the tank engine brio train track that has provided over 2 years of enjoyment and it was too big to take out. They've outgrown it now and just bring all the other new toys downstairs to the livingroom. What awesome toy is big, amazing, cohesive and engaging enough that they will go up and enjoy it there together for, say 45 minutes- 1 hour a day, like they did with the thomas set? [more inside]
posted by catspajammies at 10:24 AM PST - 19 comments

I gave myself a haircut last week and now my scalp itches. Help!

A week ago I decided it was time to trim my overgrown pixie cut. Since all we had were nail scissors and a beard trimmer, I opted to tackle the increasingly mushrooming volume of my hair with an asymmetric cut where I buzzed one side close (2-3mm), then transitioned it around the back with the trimmer, then used scissors to thin out the other side. It looks pretty rad in a queer apocalyptic haircut way ("Ladies, please! I'm social distancing!"), but in the past two days, and not sooner, EVERYTHING ITCHES in the areas where I used the trimmer. [more inside]
posted by deludingmyself at 10:16 AM PST - 8 comments

Online euchre playing options (aka midwesterners on lockdown)

Are there remote card game playing options? My mom wants to play euchre with us. [more inside]
posted by geegollygosh at 9:39 AM PST - 2 comments

Recommendations to translate anonymous voicemails from Togo?

Dear all, I've been receiving voicemails overs WhatsApp to my Montreal phone number from a +228 country code (which means the calls are from Togo as far as I understand). I don't believe that I know this person, nor have I ever traveled to Togo nor any neighboring countries. I don't understand the language, although the speaker does say some words in French that I do understand ("bon travail", "au revoir", etc.) More below... [more inside]
posted by vert canard at 9:36 AM PST - 6 comments

Is there any reason not to get a BCG (tuberculosis) vaccine right now?

I've been reading that countries that universally vaccinate for TB are having better COVID outcomes. This is preliminary and correlational for now, but why wait? Is there any reason not to get the vaccine other than to avoid doctors' offices right now?
posted by ziggly at 9:07 AM PST - 12 comments

Trying to find a 00s era comics about "how to move to a new city"

I'm looking for, what, in my memory is a 2000s era (maybe late 1990s) independent comic about "how to move to a new city" and was hoping my favorite 00s era website could help me find it (that's you). [more inside]
posted by alan at 8:55 AM PST - 0 comments

Transferring OS drive from one laptop to another: will Windows work?

I appear to have fried my old Thinkpad X230 motherboard (a cupful of tea seems to have been too much for the famed spillproof design). If it's easy to just swap it with a used X230 from eBay, I'd like to do that, but not if I need to repurchase/reinstall Microsoft Windows and Office and all the other stuff on my drive. [more inside]
posted by splitpeasoup at 8:53 AM PST - 8 comments

Helping 6 year old learn to read music?

Our daughter has been taking piano lessons for a while, and enjoys it. But she's really struggling to remember the notes. How to help? [more inside]
posted by caoimhe at 7:46 AM PST - 11 comments

Help me wear a mask

I live in NYC. I like to go for a daily socially-distant walk. I do not go in any stores or enclosed places, and I remain waaaay more than 6 feet away from people, but know I should still wear a mask just in case. Problem: I am having problems finding one I can deal with having on my face for more than a few seconds. [more inside]
posted by millipede at 7:20 AM PST - 12 comments

Why won't my Whole Foods checkout complete?

I keep getting Whole Foods delivery slots but then after payment it reverts back to the cart - doesn't throw a error and the same problem happens on my phone and my MacBook (on two different networks). Any one have any idea what I can do to fix this? [more inside]
posted by UMDirector at 6:08 AM PST - 9 comments

Should I submit my Medium article to a publication that contacted me?

I am a first-time writer on Medium and very new to the platform. A large publication – The Startup – got in touch and asked me to submit. I assume this is good news! But I’m new to the platform and want to make sure I understand and pros and cons before I say yes. [more inside]
posted by ManInSuit at 6:00 AM PST - 3 comments

replacement for replacement for replacement for cigarettes

I quit smoking with the help of Juul, several years ago. When Juul stopped selling fruit flavored pods I moved to another brand (nJoy, I think?) and then THEY stopped selling fruit flavored pods. I went to a dang vape shop, the guy recommended a kit called Uwell Caliburn. Refillable pods, fruit flavored juice, vaguely Juul-shaped device, worked great. Now, brick and mortar vape shops are closed. replacement pods are out of stock everywhere I can find online. What is a good replacement? [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 2:42 AM PST - 12 comments

Painting over permanent marker on walls

We have a wall with a lot of black permanent marker on it (housewarming party game went a little over the top:) and want to paint over it. Some sites suggest that an oil-based primer will do the trick, but that didn't work for us. Other sites suggest simple spray-can paint works best. Any tips? [more inside]
posted by twirlypen at 2:02 AM PST - 11 comments

April 10

Washington State Self-Employed Unemployment COVID Cluster-F

Within a week -- like a lot of us -- I lost two of my main freelance jobs. How to proceed through the clusterf_ck of everyone filing? I'ven been self-employed for 25 years. [more inside]
posted by zenpop at 10:08 PM PST - 4 comments

Hot feet whyyyyyyy

Why are my feet hot? You are not my doctor. [more inside]
posted by St. Peepsburg at 9:57 PM PST - 10 comments

How to get prenatal care in Canada w/o insurance? (A COVID clusterf*ck)

As a non-resident Canadian who unexpectedly needs to move back to Canada for a few months while pregnant, how do I get prenatal care if my provincial health insurance is no longer valid? [more inside]
posted by Sockmaster at 9:40 PM PST - 5 comments

15th-19th century period films and books, ideally queer?

For film recommendations, I'm looking for more in the vein of Portrait of a Lady on Fire and The Favourite. I also loved Mary, Queen of Scots and Marie Antoinette, and Ever After (yeah, with Drew Barrymore). Excellent if queer, francophone, and especially if available on a streaming service right now. [more inside]
posted by witchen at 9:06 PM PST - 30 comments

How to respond to 6yo daughter's newly developed throat-clearing tic?

Around three months ago our daughter got a cold and struggled with clearing her throat and the gesture has since developed into a full-blown tic. How should we be responding or supporting her so she can eliminate this behaviour? [more inside]
posted by sxtrumpeto at 8:03 PM PST - 16 comments

Want to travel with friend, but needtoo learn freelance skill for funds

I have a bachelors in Psych, 3mths of a UX bootcamp course (GA), 8mths of UX for a small company before being laid off an unable to find a new job because of my lack of design skills, 9 mths of working with my Dad to start his business. I want to join my friend who wants to try out the freelance nomad lifestyle. How can I afford this? [more inside]
posted by ggp88 at 5:59 PM PST - 5 comments

Oops, I bought gluten-free matzo meal. How bad is this going to be?

It was my first shopping trip in a month, so I guess I'm out of practice. I accidentally grabbed gluten-free matzo meal. I just want to make some matzo balls. Are they going to be terrible? HOW terrible? What if I have a bit of stale gluten-containing matzo meal I could mix in? Any and all tips are appreciated, including "feed it to pigeons and enjoy matzo balls after next month's shopping trip."
posted by juliapangolin at 5:42 PM PST - 8 comments

Blue veins on face

Two weeks ago, dark blue veins on my forehead and sides of my face became very visible, to the point that I'm startled whenever I look in the mirror. Is this a sign of... something? Should I be concerned? [more inside]
posted by metasarah at 5:02 PM PST - 3 comments

HazmatFilter: Oven Cleaner Spill Edition

I have what I think is a pretty minor chemical spill in my basement involving oven cleaner and latex paint, but I'd like to make sure that I take the right precautions when cleaning it up and disposing of the spilled materials. Details below. [more inside]
posted by tonycpsu at 4:32 PM PST - 3 comments

Dipped in the River Styx, Achilles was left with a weak spot. Or two.

Trying to figure out why my Achilles', and other ankle-area tendons and muscles, go completely to hell after short periods of physical inactivity — AND/OR because of Statins. What approaches might I take to address this long-term chronic issue, esp. given the current access limitations of the Western Medicine Machinery, and the physical limitations imposed by a recent acute flareup? [more inside]
posted by armoir from antproof case at 4:04 PM PST - 4 comments

Short Story searching

I read a short story some years ago. I can't remember the same or who wrote it. Can the Hive Mind help me? [more inside]
posted by mule98J at 3:43 PM PST - 5 comments

What Happened to My Back?

So I had a tense teleconference sitting in an uncomfortable chair a week ago, and ever since then I've had varying degrees of lower back pain. YANMD, but what, biologically, could be going on in my back? I can understand throwing my back out lifting something heavy, but how could sitting tensely on a bad chair cause a week's worth of back pain?
posted by musofire at 2:33 PM PST - 12 comments

Looking to incorporate oversight into online coaching for students.

For research purposes on how to do this, can you help point me in the right direction or suggest key words I might use? Please see Extended Explanation. Many thanks. [more inside]
posted by ritabean1 at 1:51 PM PST - 1 comment

Remote printing bulk mail solution

I've been in contact with my city government about and impeding mass eviction threat. Good news, they can't do it while the State level eviction ban is in place just so they can re-furbish apartments. I'm trying to come up with a way to let my neighbors know this bit of information and the best way I could think of would be to snail mail them. But I don't have a printer or that many envelopes or stamps. Is there some sort of online thing that's suitable?
posted by zengargoyle at 1:47 PM PST - 4 comments

could I make a wikipedia page stick?

My mother is a highly accomplished nurse in an executive position at a major hospital, and she has been deeply involved in the coronavirus response since it came to the US. We're working hard to help her feel supported and appreciated. My wife suggested that we be able to make a Wikipedia entry for her! I think it's a great idea, but I know that Wikipedia's editing community has a poor track record with deleting pages of women in STEM. How could we make a page stick?
posted by skookumsaurus rex at 1:35 PM PST - 10 comments

ISO Podcast app with oldest-first playlist

Hi all - I am looking for a podcast app which will list episodes from my subscribed shows in chronological order, oldest first. The closest I have found is a custom playlist in Apple Podcasts, with a filter of oldest first, but then it adds all historical episodes, going back years. This seems like a easy feature but I have not found it in any of the apps I've tried so far. Thanks for your help!
posted by cgs at 1:27 PM PST - 11 comments

Apps that gamify no-spend days

I'm looking for a really simple app that allows me to input no-spend days and gives me a badge or something when I don't spend for X days while tracking my discretionary spending. Lots of great money apps out there, but I do not want to link anything to my online banking accounts or track debt repayments. [more inside]
posted by nathaole at 1:26 PM PST - 2 comments

Socially distant games for kids?

We’re stretching to find ways for our kids to “play” with friends from a distance or over video calls. Battleship works well and they try to practice Morse code with the kids across the street (this is adorable). Any other ideas? [more inside]
posted by areaperson at 1:05 PM PST - 11 comments

Ideas for hosting a remote baby shower?

Coworker's first child is due in June and I volunteered to organize a long-distance baby shower. I've never planned a baby shower of any kind before, and this one will have to take place over Zoom. How can we coordinate, decorate, send gifts/treats, and make it special? Looking for fun, creative ideas that will be relatively simple to coordinate and execute. Bonus: can we make it a surprise? (That about covers it, but more details below the cut). [more inside]
posted by adastra at 12:32 PM PST - 6 comments

does this old candy still exist?

One night in college, circa 2002, I was pulling an all-nighter, and I went to the grocery store around 3am for supplies - mostly beer, but I bought a bag of store-brand candy that was kind of life-changing. There's a detailed description inside, but to progress the story, the grocery chain went out of business a couple of years later. I saw similar store-brand candy for a while afterward, but I haven't seen anything for probably 15 years. I'm wondering if anything like this still exists. [more inside]
posted by kevinbelt at 11:34 AM PST - 12 comments

You're Soaking In It: Books edition

What novels are absolutely soaking in atmosphere? These are books that because of the fine details and vivid and deft writing really transport and immerse you in another time or place and pull you completely into the author's world. [more inside]
posted by taz at 11:33 AM PST - 58 comments

Help me find miniature books!

Like what you find at in the racks at the cash register of a bookstore...but all the bookstores are closed. [more inside]
posted by Flying Saucer at 11:23 AM PST - 8 comments

Can I eat this: Mariano's via InstaCart ground beef (time sensitive)

Hi - I ordered two pounds of ground beef from Mariano's via InstaCart. It's not supposed to be gray inside, right? Photo linked inside. [more inside]
posted by tzikeh at 10:55 AM PST - 10 comments

Getting something mailed to me

I want to order something from a UK shop but they do not ship to the US. What are my options in the time of coronavirus? [more inside]
posted by crunchy potato at 10:30 AM PST - 4 comments

What Predictions Were Made For NYC After 9/11

Over on Bloomberg Tyler Cowen Wrote about what New York City will be like when this pandemic is over. What did people thing would become of NYC after 9/11? I'm curious about things written in 2002(ish) predicting what things will be like sometime later in the future. Did many writers assume people would flee the city?
posted by Blake at 10:03 AM PST - 1 comment

Does this Dilbert cartoon actually exist, or did I imagine it?

I have a distinct memory of seeing a Dilbert cartoon related to working from home. But I can't find the cartoon using Google, and I'm starting to think that I imagined the whole thing. [more inside]
posted by JD Sockinger at 9:44 AM PST - 7 comments

Kosher for Passover (in theory) liqueurs

Which liqueurs that you might commonly find in the U.S. would be at least theoretically kosher for Passover (putting aside certification issues) for someone consuming kitniyot? [more inside]
posted by Conrad Cornelius o'Donald o'Dell at 9:34 AM PST - 10 comments

Captioning videos

My organization is moving online and will be doing a series of webinars and videos for the public. I want to get them captioned for when the recordings end up posted on Youtube - how do I do this? [more inside]
posted by Toddles at 9:11 AM PST - 6 comments

How to find poor-quality qualitative research articles?

I am a sociology professor teaching a qualitative methods course, and I'd like my students to be able to pick apart poorly designed/conducted studies. I'm not sure how to find good examples without crawling through tons of literature - and Googling things like "examples of poor qualitative research" is not getting me anywhere. I know that there was a previous Ask regarding bad research studies more generally, but I couldn't find what I was looking for. Any ideas?
posted by amyshmamy at 7:14 AM PST - 15 comments

iPhone on wifi: browser works, Mail says "No Internet Connection." Wut?

When my iPhone Xs (iOS 12.1.2) is connected to my home wifi, whether cellular data is on or off, my iPhone's Mail app throws this error: "Cannot Get Mail No Internet connection available." Web pages will load, apps will update, everything else works. With cellular data only, Mail and everything else works fine. If wifi is connected, cellular data on or off, Mail fails but everything else works. Screwy. [more inside]
posted by conscious matter at 6:56 AM PST - 6 comments

Contacting a friend's therapist for advice

I'm close friends with someone—call them A. I'm in the unfortunate position of having to deliver bad news to A, news A might take quite hard. A suffers from depression and sees a therapist. A is open about this and has told me who their therapist is. I have been considering emailing A's therapist for advice on the best way to break the bad news to A. Is this ethical? Is it a good idea? If so, how should I go about it? Would A's therapist have to disclose to A that I reached out? [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 5:48 AM PST - 24 comments

Rec me a nice fancy compass, and is this weird?

Please recommend me a nice, working, kinda fancy, handmade(?), traditional style compass. A coworker (not my report, but not not) is having a kid and is pretty pumped, we've talked about it bunch as we have some overlap in our deals re kids and get on well, etc. I'd like to get their kid-to-be a compass. [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 5:45 AM PST - 11 comments

Best Finger Protector for GRATER/MANDOLIN/SLICER?

As we speak I have numerous cuts as a result of using a grater/slicer that came not with a guard/protector. I want one - but need something that's not flimsy and will hold a carrot on a universal-sized mandolin/slicer. Name your best. TIA
posted by watercarrier at 3:26 AM PST - 7 comments

April 9

What should I put on the base of my bathtub for more comfortable baths?

My bathtub has a rough, non-smooth texture to prevent you from slipping when taking a shower. Unfortunately, it's fairly uncomfortable when I'm lounging on my back taking a bath. What should I put on the base of my bathtub for a more comfortable reading experience? And where should I buy it? I'd prefer something that (1.) is removable, (2.) won't develop any kind of mold, and **optionally** (3.) is non-toxic/non-plastic. But again, (3.) is negotiable and I'm open to any suggestions. Thanks!
posted by jtothes at 11:18 PM PST - 11 comments

Trying to assemble a comprehensive reading list on Venezuelan history

What it says on the lid. Details within! [more inside]
posted by wooh at 10:30 PM PST - 2 comments

Bulk food 101

All of this staying at home and trying to avoid shopping has me really wanting to figure out how to buy food in bulk. I also have this idea that it should save us money. Can you tell me how to do this? [more inside]
posted by Spokane at 10:09 PM PST - 15 comments

DIY mask -- no sewing machine

I have several heavy cotton napkins that I think would be ideal mask material, but no sewing machine. They're about 18 inches square, and I can thread a tie through the hem by making holes in each side (pic). But I need help from there. [more inside]
posted by mefireader at 8:35 PM PST - 13 comments

beanplating fridge replacement in the time of 'rona shelter

2005 basic Whirlpool fridge, freezer on top, has worked mostly ok since I took ownership in 2013. Worried it may expire while we're sheltered. Plus i am one of the middle-aged with multiple underlying conditions. TMI inside. [more inside]
posted by bitterkitten at 7:46 PM PST - 13 comments

Best windows laptop to work with new Cintiq Pro?

I'm back at home after working in-studio for several years and need to upgrade my gear. I've generally used MacBook Pros with my Cintiqs but the software my client needs me to use isn't supported on Catalina. I'm looking for a graphics focused windows laptop with USB-C ports that can output 4K video. I think I've decided on a couple but I'm hoping someone here can look over the connectivity specs and make sure they'll work. [more inside]
posted by bonobothegreat at 7:12 PM PST - 8 comments

Stay at home and get food delivered, or go out so others can stay in?

This discussion raises a question for me that I hope someone can clarify: [more inside]
posted by ejs at 5:34 PM PST - 31 comments

Searching for near-adjacent strings in pdf

I want to search a pdf for words\strings nearly adjacent to one another as this is at least suggestive of a link. I'd heard I could do this in Astrogrep but regEx seems to be beyond my tiny intellect. AgentRansack also does regEx but again regex is not gelling for me. Is RegEx my answer and if so how do I do this? [more inside]
posted by unearthed at 3:16 PM PST - 7 comments

Advice for writing a professional blog post

I've been asked by my employer to write a blog post on an aspect of my work. I don't consider myself a writer, and most of the writing I do at work is to produce technical reports. Do you have any advice or good resources to write a professional yet engaging blog post? [more inside]
posted by sizeable beetle at 2:54 PM PST - 7 comments

Random grocery substitutions, vanilla cashew yogurt edition

I ordered cashew "yogurt" to use in sauces because I'm lactose intolerant and worried about running out of magic dairy pills. They brought me a big vat of vanilla flavored rather than plain, so I can't be using this in any savory sauces. [more inside]
posted by buildmyworld at 2:17 PM PST - 8 comments

Bent Needles

Using a 24 embroidery needle, on 14 aida cloth, the needles bend. What's going on? [more inside]
posted by plinth at 2:10 PM PST - 3 comments

Help remembering childhood board game

I am trying to figure out if this board game involving dogs and sausages I remember is real. [more inside]
posted by Waiting for Pierce Inverarity at 2:09 PM PST - 2 comments

Getting to the bottom of my fatigue

I've always considered myself a "tired person" -- and I'm tired of it. Working from home has presented me with a wonderful, unprecedented opportunity to identify the reasons behind, and potentially correct, my daytime fatigue issues. [more inside]
posted by Anonymouse1618 at 12:48 PM PST - 26 comments

Sweet potato leaves and other odd edibles

I am considering growing sunflower seed sprouts and also starting some sweet potatos in water for their leaves, which apparently are tasty and nutritious. There appear to be dandelions growing wild, as they do, close to my complex. What other edibles might be nutritious, tasty, and easy to grow and/or gather in or near my small home? Located in Stockholm, Sweden.
posted by Bella Donna at 12:42 PM PST - 12 comments

Overwhelmed and feeling inadequate in new job

What is the best way to handle feeling overwhelmed at a new job when you're overwhelmed with everything going on? [more inside]
posted by buttonedup at 12:32 PM PST - 9 comments

St. Patrick's Day weekend, Europe to U.S. travel: which airports?

Which U.S. airports were European travelers funneled to on the weekend of 14-15 March? [more inside]
posted by Spathe Cadet at 12:19 PM PST - 3 comments

WFH and heal my back

So my suddenly sedentary four weeks of work from home are destroying my lower back. What are you best go-to tips to alleviate discomfort and strengthen what needs strengthening in the short term given current limitations? Physical tips--especially what to do while (or before) walking--are welcome, but so is anything to deal with the mental anxieties, too. [more inside]
posted by TwoStride at 11:49 AM PST - 21 comments

NYC/COVID Filter: Donating unlimited MetroCard funds

I have money in my WageWorks account for one monthly unlimited card. I'd like to donate this to an essential worker since I've been working from home and will do so for the foreseeable future. Problem is, I haven't loaded anything onto my MetroCard since late February, so I'm assuming I'd have to go to my nearest subway station and load up a card to then donate. How unsafe would this be? If very, are there other options to do this remotely? [more inside]
posted by Recliner of Rage at 11:38 AM PST - 6 comments

Filing for unemployment-MA

I was supposed to start a new job, but it has evaporated due to covid. I have questions about unemployment in Massachusetts. [more inside]
posted by john_snow at 11:35 AM PST - 4 comments

What is "heavy frost"?

I think I understand about the "last frost" date and how to look that up, but I have a bunch of plants that say they can go outside, or that their seeds should be sown outside, or that they need to be pruned, "in early spring after the danger of heavy frost has passed." How am I supposed to know when that is? Is it now? Last year I waited until the "last frost" date for everything and it felt too late: mid-May was practically summer. This is in Madison, WI/zone 5a if anyone has a specific date in mind, but I'm also wondering in general what the concept means.
posted by teremala at 11:23 AM PST - 15 comments

Leaving without saying goodbye- how best to do?

I accepted a new job and handed in my notice before the COVID crisis began. I’m now working remotely and never got to say goodbye (or even tell many coworkers) that I’m leaving the company. How would you say goodbye and let people know? (Under normal circumstances, I would tell them face to face!) [more inside]
posted by robertthebruce at 11:14 AM PST - 7 comments

Virtual Shoe Shopping

Where can I find shoes similar to these? Features: black t-strap with cutouts and white sole. [more inside]
posted by sarajane at 11:12 AM PST - 2 comments

Distance co-op or kid-friendly competitive Switch games?

My 9 year old and I live a couple of thousand miles apart. We both have Switches and Nintendo Online. We've already played a bunch of Mario Kart and Splatoon 2. What else is out there that's good and all of: kid-friendly; online multiplayer that can be limited to just friends; not a free-for-all (looking at you, Fortnite)?
posted by hanov3r at 11:02 AM PST - 9 comments

Birthday gift of champagne, need recommendations!

My sibling was called back from their posting overseas given the Covid-19 concerns. They are now in a long term hotel for an indeterminate amount of time. Their birthday is coming up and they'd mentioned they'd love a bottle of champagne as a fun gift, and an easy way to celebrate given the circumstances. I'd love to nice recommendations as my champagne knowledge is limited. [more inside]
posted by Carillon at 10:40 AM PST - 7 comments

How to express a noise/subwoofer concern?

Ever since about a week ago, for most of the day, the floor shakes... really close to imperceptibly, but enough that I notice it and feel it in my entire body. I thought at first it was psychological or a low-level heart condition, but I have good reason to believe the floor is actually shaking and it's my downstairs neighbor's soundsystem. In particular, I only feel the floor shaking in my office/bedroom area, which is above my neighbor's living room where their TV is. Who do I talk to and what do I say? [more inside]
posted by LSK at 10:07 AM PST - 7 comments

Need quality grade 4 math worksheets

I'm willing to pay for math worksheets, as I am sick unto death of digging through the reams of add-filled, slow-to-load and not-worth-it supply of free worksheets online. Where can I buy math worksheets online - specifically for multiplication, division and fractions. [more inside]
posted by kitcat at 9:51 AM PST - 6 comments

Can I make a partial/transparent virtual background for Zoom?

Is it possible to make virtual background for Zoom that blends with my real background? [more inside]
posted by AMyNameIs at 9:34 AM PST - 8 comments

Recommendations for educational apps for a pre-schooler?

I have a 3.5 year old pre-schooler. We have an iPad that he uses and I'm wondering if anyone has any recommendations for educational apps/games that he can play during the Coronavirus outbreak. We've tried some of the recommendations we found online but it seems like it's really hit or miss. Some of the apps seem absolutely terrible and some seem really amazing. Just wondering what iOS apps have worked for your pre-schooler. Thanks!
posted by NoneOfTheAbove at 9:11 AM PST - 15 comments

What bait works best for a homemade flytrap?

I normally buy fly traps in the hardware store, but since getting to the store is more challenging nowadays, I would like to try a homemade flytrap to deal with the flies in my backyard. If you've made a homemade flytrap before, what bait did you find to be most effective? What baits did you find to be not very effective?
posted by 23skidoo at 9:01 AM PST - 2 comments

Postdoc adviser editing while hammered: NOT. OK.

My postdoctoral adviser edited part of an important grant application while totally hammered, and it shows. This isn't OK at all, I cannot work with her until this is addressed, and I have no idea how to address it. What do I do to try to salvage this working relationship? [more inside]
posted by The Sock Puppet Sentience Movement at 9:01 AM PST - 28 comments

Can I eat it? Chicken long after buying but long before sell-by date.

I bought and refrigerated raw chicken >4 days ago, and the sell-by date is still >4 days away. (I was surprised by how far the sell-by date was into the future.) It looks fine, smells fine, is not slimy. Can I cook and eat it? Is the sell-by date likely to be wrong? [more inside]
posted by zeek321 at 9:00 AM PST - 11 comments

Asking for education guidance but not a full mentor

I am currently working for a struggling industry in a niche position that has the potential for diversification into other sectors (other industries, public service), but due to the very specific nature of my experience I'll require additional education and certifications to be able to make the leap. I'd like to reach out to a few professionals who are listed as mentors on my relevant career's professional organization. They each have experience across multiple sectors and I'd like to find out what education they could recommend. Is my email request tailored well enough? [more inside]
posted by reader at 8:47 AM PST - 1 comment

How to get help with medical claims?

My wife and I have a complicated set of health claims (multiple insurances, a number of claims) that we are having significant trouble keeping track of and getting paid. Neither she nor I have the bandwidth to deal with the coordination / back-and-forth with the insurance companies on this. We want to pay someone to help us with this. Are there people who help with this? I have read about “professional fiduciaries” is that right? We aren’t old / incapable, we just don’t have the time here. How the heck do we find someone to hire?
posted by The Ted at 12:10 AM PST - 2 comments

April 8

Best supportive house slippers for hot feet?

Anyone have a favorite women's summer, supportive house slipper/flipflop/slide they love? Thanks! [more inside]
posted by tipsyBumblebee at 9:38 PM PST - 17 comments

Will I like a rotary lawn mower?

It's getting warmer, and the tiny little lawn at my tiny little house is already getting longer. I had a local kid mow my lawn a few times after I moved in late last summer, but now it's time to buy a new mower. I'm thinking that because my yard is rather small I don't a big gasoline mower. Will I be happy with an old fashioned manual rotary push mower, or should I get an electric one? [more inside]
posted by ambulocetus at 9:14 PM PST - 57 comments

Firsthand accounts of confinement?

I've been under various levels of quarantine for about three and a half weeks and it's gotten beyond frustrating. Some historical perspective from other people in extended, but not endless, confinement would be nice. The more tedious detail in each day the better! [more inside]
posted by VelveteenBabbitt at 8:27 PM PST - 23 comments

Is "vomiting from relief" a real thing?

Several times lately I have had this experience: I try something that is scary and important to me, something that would crush me if I were to fail at it. In the lead up to the thing I get super anxious, but not so much that it overwhelms me. Then when I succeed, I am so overwhelmed with relief that I start crying and vomiting. [more inside]
posted by snippet at 7:41 PM PST - 6 comments

Should I make my medium.com story eligible for curation?

I am writing an article for medium.com, as a first-time author there. Yay! I'd love for it to reach as many people as possible. I'm not sure if I should make it eligible for curation, because I'm concerned about the paywall. [more inside]
posted by ManInSuit at 7:16 PM PST - 6 comments

Has Anyone Overcome a Lifetime of Self-Sabotage?

Hello, all. I'm writing to ask for your experience with and suggestions for dealing with a lifetime of self-sabotage -- especially during this time of quarantine, which is proving sort of a crossroads for me. I'm 38 years old, fairly bright, and talented in a number of areas. I've been able to achieve some success in the arts, academics, and with my own small business. To be honest, I'm totally sick of strangers/clients/friends being basically amazed by stuff I do, and then seeing the question in their eyes even if they don't say it (and some do): "Why aren't you, like, really successful/well known/famous for this?" A huge part of me just rolls its eyes and says they're full of it and just being nice. But I've heard it so many times, about so many different things, from so many people (including people who aren't necessarily nice) -- and I've thought it myself -- so I have to admit that something f***ed up is probably going on with me. The problem -- and it's embarrassing as hell to see this clearly only now, at almost 40 -- is that every time I get close to being *really* successful, I back down. [more inside]
posted by Orlando_Vita at 7:10 PM PST - 10 comments

Add Notes and Reminders icons to iPhone home screen

I have somehow deleted the icons for the Notes app and Reminders app from the home screen of my iPhone SE. Is there some way to get them back? If I reset the home screen layout will it revert to factory settings and delete all my other apps?
posted by Naanwhal at 6:14 PM PST - 2 comments

Learning the banjo - socially distant edition

Welp, I bought a banjo! I've never even HELD a banjo! What online videos and tutorials will show me the basics of the instrument and how to get started? [more inside]
posted by kinsey at 5:12 PM PST - 5 comments

Hack half a screen door/pet gate?

I am now working from home in a room where the only window is a door. I'd like to be able to open the door for fresh air on nice days without my feline coworkers escaping. A regular screen door won't work because the door frame also includes a tall, narrow window. Pet gates (even if I screened the bars to make sure the cats couldn't slip through) probably aren't tall enough. Do you have any suggestions? I'm open to hacks and temporary solutions. [more inside]
posted by bluedaisy at 4:32 PM PST - 22 comments

Big Intergenerational Fluff Romance Fiction Series Sought

When I'm stressed, I really like long series (10+ books preferred) that involve the romances of all members of a family, and then the members of the new related families, and their friends, and then the kids, cousins, etc, and everyone keeps popping up in the further books to let you know that yes they are still living happily. Please help me find new ones to keep me comforted during quarantine. [more inside]
posted by corb at 3:56 PM PST - 23 comments

I hate exercising (help me get me exercising)

I am slim, and look fit. But I have some lower back issues, and also a dodgy shoulder. I need to do specific exercise for these things, but I have never managed to motivate myself to do this every day. In fact, I find exercise incredibly boring and tedious. I want to figure out ways to integrate exercise for my back and shoulder (and perhaps everything) into my daily life. Out of the box thinking very welcome. [more inside]
posted by 0bvious at 3:45 PM PST - 19 comments

Simplest way to share resources/links/articles for parents & kids

Is there is an easy/simple app? website? that would allow me to have 2 sections, where I could then store links, articles, videos, etc for folks I work with to access, and doesn't have any messaging or commenting feature? [more inside]
posted by fairlynearlyready at 3:08 PM PST - 6 comments

I quit drinking! Looking for simplified phrases to keep me motivated

When I quit smoking, I was able to come up with simple phrases that encapsulated more complex issues to remind me why I was quitting, and kept me motivated. It worked for me!! Now I need this for alcohol. [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 3:01 PM PST - 14 comments

Will this old security system kill me?

Photos here. We just bought and moved into a house built in 1970. I want to remove the obsolete security system control box from my coat closet. Can i just start cutting wires? Prior owner doesn’t know anything about it and there’s no alarm company info on it.
posted by Talia Devane at 2:38 PM PST - 18 comments

When to give a poop -dog edition

My dog has red blood in stool. I know to call the vet but...more below the fold to hide the pleasant details. [more inside]
posted by turtlefu at 1:57 PM PST - 6 comments

How would you bake this no-bake cake?

No-bake cake recipe includes raw eggs. Do not want to eat raw eggs. What are our options? [more inside]
posted by fozzie_bear at 1:51 PM PST - 5 comments

Looking for a video game to play with my son

I was playing Team Fortress 2 on my PC and my 3.5 year old came by and watched. He was really interested in controlling the character and seeing the other players running around. We stopped playing when he realized they were fighting each other. Are there any first person non-shooter games that would be appropriate to play with my son?
posted by NoneOfTheAbove at 1:36 PM PST - 13 comments

Parent in shared custody using 'quarantine' to keep child - USA version

Pretty much what it says. We have 50% custody, the child is currently with other parent, other parent has told me that they will now keep the child because of unspecified quarantine issues. I have called my attorney, but it is always useful to have hive mind suggestions as to possible ideas to talk about with said attorney. Pennsylvania, USA. Thank you! [more inside]
posted by life moves pretty fast at 1:03 PM PST - 20 comments

Help me remember YA Fantasy from the 90s

I'm trying to find 2 90s YA fantasy novels that are entangled in my memory. [more inside]
posted by kittensofthenight at 12:55 PM PST - 13 comments

Duplex Dysfunction

I own a unit in a duplex outside Boston. The relationship with the other owner is extremely antagonistic. I feel under siege and cannot enjoy or relax in my home or yard. Is there an avenue for us to rectify the situation without us having to pay a lawyer and sue? [more inside]
posted by Phyllis keeps a tight rein at 11:45 AM PST - 15 comments

Fiction recs for BFF--> Romance

Looking for lighthearted entertainment (books, tv shows, movies) where 2 characters start out as BFFs & then later get into a romantic relationship. [more inside]
posted by jschu at 11:09 AM PST - 17 comments

Pruning red, black and white currant bushes mostly with old wood

My currant bushes are mostly old branches. Do I prune them out just the same, leaving very little or no new growth? [more inside]
posted by kirsti at 11:03 AM PST - 4 comments

Fixing the Message store has reached its maximum size Outlook 365 home

I'm extremely frustrated not finding a solution to my outlook issue. I have tried all kinds of things. I have removed tons of emails (naturally, I can't remove them in my outlook but I can do it in my gmail account). I have allowed archiving. I have previously managed to get out of this using these tricks but not this time. I have some info that I really need in my contacts folder.... [more inside]
posted by kirsti at 10:27 AM PST - 3 comments

This is no big deal, right?

Need reassurance about sudden lump under chin... [more inside]
posted by sprezzy at 9:51 AM PST - 8 comments

Question about state and federal unemployment benefits

I started working in January as a substitute teacher in NYC, through a temp agency. After ~2 months of work, the schools closed. Are there any state or federal unemployment or other benefits that I can apply for? [more inside]
posted by davidstandaford at 9:39 AM PST - 6 comments

In search of language self-studying how tos

Looking for best practices on structuring language self-study programs for an intermediate learner. Not looking for specific language learning resources so much as resources on how to study. (Spanish, specifically) [more inside]
posted by geegollygosh at 7:45 AM PST - 6 comments

Tell me about your favourite MKE and PHI pop culture!

I had a trip planned to Chicago and Milwaukee, and now that's been obviously postponed, I am reconfiguring it to also include DC and Philadelphia. Chicago/DC are pretty well served by popular culture - are there any books, films, documentaries or series about Philadelphia and Milwaukee that I can get into whilst proper planning is on hold? [more inside]
posted by mippy at 6:51 AM PST - 17 comments

Should I report a non-essential business that hasn't closed?

I'm located in a state with a high prevalence of COVID-19. I am aware of a hair salon that is still doing brisk business, despite a mandatory order for all non-essential businesses to close. Should I report them? [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 6:26 AM PST - 35 comments

Someone just harassed me via text. Can I find out who sent it?

I just received a weird string of insults via text. The sender used specifics that make me think they know (or knew) me personally. (Damn, dude. This is a first.) I looked up the number on Whitepages, Spokeo, and Intelius. Not much info, except the carrier is listed as Onvoy. It looks like (?) that's a service that lets you text over the Internet. Is there anything I can do to find out who sent these messages? I didn't respond because Gift of Fear, but I'm reluctant to block in case they escalate. Thanks for any ideas or expertise you have to share!
posted by anonymous at 6:25 AM PST - 3 comments

Museum ID from "The Americans"

In "Immersion" (S5E8) of "The Americans", the FBI agents meet with a Soviet source in a museum. Where was this scene shot? (Description of the scene inside.) [more inside]
posted by Johnny Assay at 4:56 AM PST - 2 comments

Creating Finder icons for video files on a Mac (Catalina)?

Is there a way to create preview icons in the Finder for video files on a Mac with Catalina installed? In the latest version of Mac OS the icons for video files in formats like .wmv and .avi have become just general icons rather than being a visual preview. I don't think that this is currently supported by Apple itself, but is there any third-party software that can accomplish this?
posted by mortaddams at 4:42 AM PST - 2 comments

Switch lite with limited hand mobility

I'm slowly regaining mobility after a severe break in my left arm and wrist. I had just bought a Switch Lite before the injury, and I am new to video games (besides super mario bros c. 1988). I can press buttons and sorta move the joystick around, but not smoothly or dexterously. Is there anything that might work? Or a truly enticing game that will help me push forward despite some frustration? [more inside]
posted by thegreatfleecircus at 4:26 AM PST - 13 comments

Awkward hair grow-out

My 6 year old boy wants to grow his hair long ("just like mama"). He is currently at that awkward stage where it is starting to be long enough to get in his eyes and over his ears but too short to pull back in any way. Can you help us with some ideas about how to keep it under control while he plays? [more inside]
posted by ohio at 1:14 AM PST - 25 comments

April 7

Help wording an email concerning new resident at assisted living home

My 88 year old mother lives in an assisted living home. The residents have been well taken care of during the covid pandemic They receive meals in their private rooms, group activities have been stopped, no visitors are allowed...We get email updates every two days with protocol and safety updates. This residence is smaller, 35 people, but part of a large group of senior living. We have just received a message from another resident's daughter, that two new residents are moving in this week. They are from the NY area, movers will be in and out of the building... What should I write that will be constructive and persuasive, rather than angry and emotional? Thank you
posted by jennstra at 9:41 PM PST - 18 comments

Podcasts/books for men about healing from heartbreak after being dumped?

I’m 31 and was recently dumped out of the blue by my first girlfriend of ~3 years. I’m looking for a series of podcasts or books I can listen to while walking or going through an emotional crying spell that are for men. Reason for the distinction is that a lot of what I’ve found is for women. I’m not looking for a Pickup Hot Babez type of thing. I’m looking for help grieving, self love/care and getting back out there to find my future wife. [more inside]
posted by ggp88 at 8:41 PM PST - 15 comments

How to make a phone call to unemployment during a pandemic

I need to reach unemployment on the telephone. It won't let me do the weekly update online, and when I used the contact form, I was told to call a number that I had already called literally a hundred times today. Is there a service that will attempt to call a phone number and connect me when the number rings? [more inside]
posted by aniola at 8:07 PM PST - 8 comments

Internet Browsing Trouble

I am more or less stuck on on one website. I can't switch between browser tabs using my mouse. I can't click on the browser settings icon in the top right. [more inside]
posted by NotLost at 7:47 PM PST - 4 comments

Craaaaaazy for coffee! (Hopefully not?)

I am the proud owner of a 6 cup aluminum Bialetti coffee percolator. Italian made. I love it to death and use it everyday, but a friend recently pointed out the toxicity of aluminum and the fact that it can cause Alzheimer’s later in life. Or something. [more inside]
posted by leafmealone at 6:07 PM PST - 7 comments

Get me (sourdough) started

I’m making sourdough starter for the first time, using the approach posted on the blue recently. However, being a set of instructions in tweet form, it’s really light on details, and seems different enough from other sourdough starter recipes that I’m finding it hard to know what to do next. [more inside]
posted by quiet coyote at 5:54 PM PST - 25 comments

How to do better on the marshmallow test?

How can I improve my impulse control? How can I instill the values of non-instant gratification/teach my toddler to have good impulse control? [more inside]
posted by robertthebruce at 2:37 PM PST - 22 comments

Ok to collect unemployment along with severance?

My wife was laid off today in Massachusetts. She can sign away some rights to get a severance package that will be paid over a couple of months. She intends to sign. Several websites including boston.com indicate that if one gives up rights in exchange for severance they can also collect unemployment. Is there any issue with doing so? We'd like to start collecting right away to make sure we can get the full extra COVID amount, as we don't think she'll be able to easily find a job any time soon.
posted by david1230 at 2:37 PM PST - 11 comments

Another eBay selling question -- buyer wants refund

This is a follow-up to my eBay-related question from February. Buyer now seeks a refund. The auction for the vintage white-gold engagement ring ended when I accepted their offer of $300. Yesterday I received an email from the buyer, asking if I was aware that "the cttw of this ring is not 1.00cttw - but it is 0.48cttw? Do you accept returns?" A link to the closed auction listing is on my profile page. [more inside]
posted by furtive_jackanapes at 12:25 PM PST - 14 comments

"If I have a dog, my dog has a human."

Folks who are autists or who have mental health issues, especially those who don't have strong social networks: how has being guardian to a dog helped you? [more inside]
posted by Sheydem-tants at 11:34 AM PST - 14 comments

Is this juice safe to drink?

The other day I bought a bottle of carrot/apple/watermelon juice at my local juicer. Unfortunately, I forgot about it in my bookbag for 8hours to a day. I put it in my fridge after I remembered it. I just took a sip - and it's vinegary - I think it fermented. Frankly, I love fermented stuff and it tasted great. Is it safe?
posted by matkline at 11:29 AM PST - 12 comments

MN - Furloughed Bi-weekly pay but still have hours

I don't understand how furloughing works and my company is directing me to the state and the state is directing me to my company. Does anyone know how this works? [more inside]
posted by lpcxa0 at 11:15 AM PST - 5 comments

Looking for a Nominet registrar (for a .ltd.uk TLD) domain

But I know some don't deal with .ltd.uk TLDs... Does anyone here know (or recommend, or otherwise!) a registered Nominet registered Registrar (from the list linked below) who deal with .ltd.uk domains? Nominet Register of Registrars... Perhaps someone here, or someone you know has registered a .ltd.uk domain in the past, and wouldn't mind letting me know who they used. (or PM me their domain, so I can find out myself) I considered checking the Accredited ones first, but I already know that at least one of them doesn't deal with .ltd.uk domains. [more inside]
posted by Dub at 10:57 AM PST - 11 comments

Convert my fun in-class activity to a fun online activity

For a (doctoral level) class I teach I do an activity where I hide a quarter on the quad (grassy open space the size of a soccer field, say) and a student has two minutes to find it. The student can recruit helpers, if they want, but has to split the fabulous 25 cent spoils evenly with each helper recruited. I'd like to do a similar activity in my now online class. [more inside]
posted by shadygrove at 10:33 AM PST - 13 comments

Best universities in Canada for applied math and mathematical finance?

So I'm a CS major, but I want to get into more mathematical fields. I really like Finance and Operations Research. I know Waterloo has good programs for that. However, who else is also a good choice? [more inside]
posted by Tarsonis10 at 10:32 AM PST - 2 comments

I need a robot that says to me "Okay, so then what happened?"

The way I've written best has been to lecture to a writing assistant who, at key pauses, repeats a portion of what I've just said with a questioning tone. And then I elaborate and continue. And then types it up. Because of Covid, not so much. I got transcription with an app. But not the prompts. I tried with someone on zoom. Not good. So is there some sort of vocal robot that can be my new writing encourager?
posted by rileyray3000 at 10:22 AM PST - 8 comments

8.5" x 11" alternative to Rhodia pads

I am in love with my spiral-bound micro-perf Rhodia notebook. However, it's A4 size, which means that it is just slightly off-size from all of my 8.5" x 11" office papers - just off by enough to drive me crazy. What alternatives can you recommend that offers the same quality of paper, but is in a size that matches American office supplies?
posted by AngerBoy at 10:13 AM PST - 3 comments

The next-best thing besides changing medicine as we know it.

My amazing cousin saw my various facebook posts about being a scared medical worker and messaged me asking "Is there anything I can do to make your essential-worker life suck less? Up to and very much including buying and having supplies delivered to you." I would love to take her up on this but I'm overwhelmed and can't even think of where to begin. What would you ask for in my boat? More info about both me and my cousin below. [more inside]
posted by I am a Sock, I am an Island at 9:54 AM PST - 5 comments

How do I stop assuming the worst of people?

How do I stop assuming the worst of people that I know? I will often conclude that they don't like me anymore or that they are not going to do things they said they'd do or other things along those lines, despite plenty of evidence to the contrary. I can tell it's not productive for me and not fair to them, and yet I persist.
posted by ferret branca at 9:47 AM PST - 7 comments

How can I achieve marks in mid-eighties in my fourth year at university?

I am starting my fourth year this coming fall and I am eager to achieve grades in the 85 percent range if possible. Most of my grades are high seventies and low eighties, but I would like to somehow achieve marks in the 85 range for graduate school/law in the future. How can I change my study habits and write excellent papers in my fourth year? [more inside]
posted by RearWindow at 9:44 AM PST - 15 comments

Podcasts where file is under 10MB

My current computer setup means that podcasts of an average sort of size (say 15MB to 45MB) take two or three hours to download and fail several times whilst downloading. Can you recommend podcasts of a smaller file size, say under 10MB, but still lasting half an hour or longer? I'm not too worried about sound quality as long as it's intelligible. Not politics, fiction or humour (though a bit political or a bit humorous is fine). Thanks.
posted by paduasoy at 9:39 AM PST - 6 comments

We have a few days to prepare - what to do?

Cut for COVID-19 content. [more inside]
posted by prewar lemonade at 9:31 AM PST - 9 comments

Mail Merge to create timesheets

I have an Excel spreadsheet showing time worked for around 70 employees. Each employee has between 7 and 14 entries. I would like to do a mail merge that will produce a single page for each employee and show only their entries. Is there an easy way to do this? I have come up with a few complex work-arounds, but I'm hoping there's a simpler solution. I feel like it has something to do with a Directory merge, but I can't figure out how that works and the few resources I found in a google search didn't seem to match. [more inside]
posted by robverb at 8:34 AM PST - 5 comments

Find this weird, magical, deeply strange book I read as a child!

For ages, I've been semi-haunted by trying to remember what book I (sort of) read. Details of what I remember below, but it was a very odd book, about a woman who had an (evil? chaotic?) creature living in her garden. The book was full of deep descriptions of sunlight and the garden and this woman's fear of the creature. [more inside]
posted by kalimac at 8:11 AM PST - 3 comments

Which parts for upgrading an older iMac?

Hi. I'd like some help regarding parts and tutorials for upgrading my old iMac. [more inside]
posted by komara at 8:09 AM PST - 12 comments

Books about herb gardening

I'd like suggestions for books about culinary herb gardening that go beyond intro level, but there are a million options. [more inside]
posted by medusa at 7:43 AM PST - 4 comments

Share information about how to get delivery services now

I'm disabled, and I'm reliant on delivery services for groceries and other necessities. I know a lot of people are in the same boat. Delivery services are very overloaded now, and it's hard to get service. I thought we could share our experiences. If you are using delivery services, can you answer the following questions? [more inside]
posted by Surprised By Bees at 7:28 AM PST - 37 comments

My relationship with my boyfriend is far from what I want...

My “boyfriend” and I have been together for about 8 months and we have been living together for about 2. I moved to his country a couple of years ago because of a job. My contract is soon to end and my future here is uncertain. I might get a new contract at the company but it's not sure. I met him in the middle of this situation and although I had doubts and wondered if it was a good idea to date someone now, I decided to give it a try. We soon became very close and he asked me to move in with him. [more inside]
posted by Fromthesouth at 6:55 AM PST - 11 comments

General tips for extending shelf life of food

Apropos the Virus and avoiding public places to limit exposure, the Today show just ran a 3 minute segment on making perishable items last longer. The advice was very good, but limited given the short length of the segment. This question is a request for the same. Fellow learned, epicurious Mefites--what do you know about making food last longer?
posted by BadgerDoctor at 6:50 AM PST - 42 comments

Billie Holiday - Proof of dog breed?

Today I learned that there's an illustrated book about Billie Holiday and her dog, Mister. Seeing pictures from it I immediately thought, "Why did they draw the dog as a Boxer when it famously was a Pit Bull?!" And then I learned that in the book, they ID'd the dog as a Boxer. WTF? [more inside]
posted by dobbs at 6:26 AM PST - 9 comments

Best light coding make your own game system for 9 yo?

My daughter wants to make her own video game but has no idea what kind of game she wants to make. She is not into plaformers but really enjoyed some smaller games like World of Goo and Donut County. She knows how to do Scratch style gui coding. We are on Win10 or Android. What are the best all in one game creation systems? I don't care if they are pay or open source, only that they are age suitable and don't require everything to be hand crafted. She is not very into LEGO or Minecraft.
posted by benzenedream at 12:48 AM PST - 9 comments

Can you help me identify this pink tile?

I’ve seen my share of pink tile, but not like this! Can you help me figure out what kind of tile it is? It’s very hard and feels like solid stone. It held up to getting scratched with a flathead screwdriver. [more inside]
posted by ancient star at 12:08 AM PST - 4 comments

April 6

Can I use my iPhone’s camera, but my MacBook’s screen, for FaceTime?

My parents and I are planning a FaceTime call with my grandmother. She’ll have an iPad provided by staff at her nursing home, while we have an iPhone 12 and MacBook Pro. The iPhone camera is significantly better than the MacBook’s, so I’d like to use that to give my grandmother the best possible video of us. But we’d like to see my grandmother on the MacBook's larger screen (and better speakers). Is this possible without using any third-party software? If a third-party app is necessary, which one would be the least sketchy?
posted by theory at 9:11 PM PST - 13 comments

How did they accomplish this multi-person musician jam

Hi all, I know we've had many very helpful threads about how live music jamming "in sync" is virtually impossible without insane university-level internet connections, so I was wondering if anyone knew how the Hamilton cast accomplished this "live from each performer's apartment" rendition of Alexander Hamilton. [more inside]
posted by katecholamine at 7:41 PM PST - 16 comments

A pot roast recipe that makes you feel comfy cozy just thinking about it

It's no longer comfort food season for most of us, but let's be honest, it's still comfort food season for most of us. On a whim I bought (while strictly observing all best social distancing practices) a pot roast, some red wine, onion, carrots, celery, rosemary and thyme on my trip to the store, and am looking for favorite preparations for a pot roast that will help my family, you know, deal with everything.
posted by vverse23 at 7:11 PM PST - 11 comments

Money for Nothing

My hospital workplace has a policy to pay all employees until late May if their department has been affected by coronavirus. I have some questions about how they are paying affected employees during this time and whether or not I'm being unreasonable. [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 4:37 PM PST - 10 comments

I want to make great fried chicken but can't find buttermilk :(

All my trusted sources (Serious Eats, NY Times, etc.) suggest buttermilk brine for the best fried chicken. But it's too hard to find and I'm not TOTALLY convinced it's worth getting covid-19 in search of it. But I am also really picky about fried chicken and I don't want to make it if it's gonna be subpar. Any suggestions? (I do have pickle brine, by the way). Thanks!
posted by malhouse at 3:09 PM PST - 21 comments

Bread/baking recipes that require egg, but not yeast?

Are there any good bread (or baking) recipes that don't require yeast, but do require eggs, either for chemical or flavoring purposes? [more inside]
posted by melorama at 2:20 PM PST - 27 comments

Boundaries & Feedback in the Time of COVID

I’m realizing that one of my best friends is very self-centered and it’s gotten worse as life has gotten more challenging for everyone during quarantine. How do I give her feedback/set boundaries right now when I know that none of us are at our best and most resilient? [more inside]
posted by Colonel_Chappy at 2:05 PM PST - 19 comments

get/make transparent hard drive icons - why so difficult? (OS X)

This should be ridiculously easy, and yet I fail every time. 1) Find icon with transparent background 2) Download 3) Copy 4) Get Info on matching drive 5) Select the little pic at the top left in the Get Info window 6) cmd-v to paste the new icon. I can't get past #2 - the transparency's either gone when I download or won't hold through saving as a png. Click for longer explanation --> [more inside]
posted by tzikeh at 1:55 PM PST - 9 comments

An Easter Feast for One

I have a leftover pork tenderloin that I want to cook over the weekend for a mini-Easter feast for myself. I'm looking for recipes that aren't *too* complicated to use this pork tenderloin for. I'm also looking for suggestions for 1 extra side that'd go well the pork tenderloin. [more inside]
posted by VirginiaPlain at 12:53 PM PST - 16 comments

Successful Bluejeans breakout sessions?

Have you had success using breakout sessions / breakout rooms in BlueJeans? [more inside]
posted by spbmp at 12:31 PM PST - 1 comment

CenturyLink gigabit fiber and WiFi

1. What's the easiest way to fix a dead spot that's far away from my router, but near an ethernet cable in the wall? 2. What's the best wifi/mesh setup to get the most out of our gigabit fiber? [more inside]
posted by rouftop at 12:03 PM PST - 7 comments

Good natured neighborhood pranks/jokes

Any ideas on good-natured neighborhood pranks/jokes in the age of COVID? Thinking things like the classic "found dog" poster with a picture of what is clearly a raccoon posted to a power-pole, etc. [more inside]
posted by inflatablekiwi at 11:33 AM PST - 30 comments

Online band jamming

My band stopped practicing in person, for obvious reasons. Is there a way we can still play together online? We're a typical electric guitar-bass-drums outfit. We're moderately technically savvy. (Well, the other guys are.) I understand "latency" is an issue?
posted by gottabefunky at 11:26 AM PST - 4 comments

How to throw a COVID-era karaoke party

For a friend's birthday next week, I want to throw a remote karaoke party, one where everyone can participate from their own homes. What kind of setup would you use for this? [more inside]
posted by Mender at 11:20 AM PST - 5 comments

Recipes ideas to use up frozen carnitas

We made this recipe of carnitas awhile back and ended up freezing about 2 cups of leftovers. We’re tired of nachos/tacos, our access to fresh product is limited, and I’m not feeling inspired in the kitchen right now. Please lend me your ideas! [more inside]
posted by the thorn bushes have roses at 10:52 AM PST - 21 comments

blocking out some words in pdf

And I thought it would just open in paint, silly me. Having lost *both* of my jobs due to the cv... [more inside]
posted by Rumi'sLeftSock at 10:35 AM PST - 12 comments

Swollen lymph nodes in neck?

Okay I can't believe I'm asking a medical question but here we are. The lymph nodes below the jaw on either side of my neck feel big. Internet says they shouldn't be larger than a pea but they definitely are. They feel like they're both the same size. They don't feel tender. I noticed this last Tuesday. I have no other symptoms beside an off again on again headache. YANMD but: what is up here? I literally can't get this checked out right now because my doctor's office and urgent cares are closed.
posted by Automocar at 10:21 AM PST - 12 comments

Pork butt in the house!

As part of a biggish shopping trip this morning, trying to lay in supplies for the next couple weeks, I picked up an almost 5 lb boneless pork butt. I'd like to braise/slow roast this bad boy, but don't have a recipe. I could wing it, but would love to know what are your favorites? I have only my tried and true Le Creuset Dutch oven on hand.
posted by computech_apolloniajames at 10:14 AM PST - 21 comments

Activities that involve waiting and short bursts of activity

To help structure my day, I'm looking for activities that involve long waiting times interrupted by short periods of activity. Ideally it would run on a time scale of a day or so (so if I start in the morning and do things intermittently throughout the day, something happens at the end of the day) Bread baking is great for this (knead dough, wait, punch down, wait, etc..) but there is only so much bread one person can eat/freeze and I'm starting to run low on flour. What other things can I do?
posted by btfreek at 9:52 AM PST - 11 comments

Is there a way to improve the audio of recordings mad in a car?

I've been shooting a vlog with my iPhone in my car. You can check out an example here. The audio isn't awful, but it could certainly be better. I'm going to experiment with a GoPro and mics to help, but I'd like to improve the ones I've already shot. Is there anything that can be done to help?
posted by StimulatingPixels at 9:39 AM PST - 3 comments

Portable washing machine wanted

Even in the best of times I hate going to the laundromat. And now is not the best of times. I am very much resisting going to the laundromat (no laundry in building), so towels and sheets and lounge wear and bandannas I use for face masks are piling-up. I'm thinking the solution is to buy (online) a portable washing machine (the type that connects to the kitchen faucet). [more inside]
posted by Pineapplicious at 9:38 AM PST - 14 comments

Replacement for Mossimo leggings from Target

Mossimo used to make leggings - they were thick, soft, supportive, matte, and sturdy, with a wide, flat waistband, and ankle length for me (I'm 5'5"). They were affordable and sold at Target. I wore them under dresses with boots, on the weekends, everywhere. They no longer make them and I've been trying to find a suitable replacement for a year. Most of what I have found is either way too thin, too shiny, or the waistband is insanely tight. Anyone that was familiar with these leggings that can direct me to a replacement with similar qualities?
posted by wurly at 9:25 AM PST - 9 comments

Mouse Proofing Questions

Looking for strategies to mouse proof an old house, with lots of tiny holes for them to travel through. [more inside]
posted by SobaFett at 8:31 AM PST - 12 comments

Fall lawn fertilizer in Spring?

I got most of the way done laying-down a weed-n-feed this morning, and then realized I had put down the stuff sold for Fall treatment. Will it still work the way I need? [more inside]
posted by Thorzdad at 7:59 AM PST - 4 comments

Losing friends and moving on

I officially ended my 12 year friendship with my ex-best friend on the day before yesterday. It was upsetting, but overwhelmingly, I feel relieved. But now I'm navigating the delicate situation of keeping our mutual friends. Just because I leave my best friend, that doesn't mean I have to leave our mutual friends...right? [more inside]
posted by Socolime at 7:55 AM PST - 4 comments

Security/privacy issues with Zoom – is the panic justified?

My small organization is considering whether to dump Zoom. Offhand, this seems like an over-reaction to me, but I'd like to get some other opinions. [more inside]
posted by akk2014 at 7:53 AM PST - 12 comments

Record Zoom without recording chat

I know this is googla-able but I am short on time and my google skills are failing me. How do I record a zoom meeting including screen sharing and not have the chat show up on the recording. I have 15 minutes before showtime but you all are amazing so I have hope!
posted by a22lamia at 7:44 AM PST - 1 comment

Australian fingerprints in the age of COVID19

I'm in Melbourne, Australia. I need to get a set of fingerprints for an FBI criminal check for immigration purposes. Our state police aren't doing fingerprints due to COVID19. What are my other options? [more inside]
posted by divabat at 6:34 AM PST - 9 comments

I have two new N-95 masks. Ok to use them or not?

My husband and I were given two N-95 masks by the wife of a (retired) doctor from church when C19 was barely making headlines. She said he had a couple of boxes from his practice. [more inside]
posted by KleenexMakesaVeryGoodHat at 6:24 AM PST - 9 comments

What was this book about getting stranded on a tropical island?

I'm trying to find a book I read as a kid, but can't find anything on google. [more inside]
posted by stillnocturnal at 4:54 AM PST - 12 comments

Calming activities

Activities which keep the body/hands busy and calm the mind [more inside]
posted by unicorn chaser at 3:15 AM PST - 36 comments

I need to switch it up; how do you deal with self-isolation alone?

There's been lots of advice for partner board games and group social meetups and work meetings online but I feel like I'm in the vacuumest vacuum in which I've ever been. [more inside]
posted by bendy at 1:54 AM PST - 20 comments

April 5

Hungry Asian Seeks Freelance Chinese to English Translation Work

My small business is temporarily shut due to Covid-19 and I am looking for freelance Chinese to English Translation work to feed myself over this period. [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 11:32 PM PST - 9 comments

Can I eat this? Edition: musty/lysol brown rice

Before hunkering down for quarantine, I bought two big, 5lb bags of brown rice. They smell and taste a little off. Can I eat this? [more inside]
posted by moonlight on vermont at 11:24 PM PST - 7 comments

Comforting, easy-to-make recipes

I'm looking for comfort food that I can make during these dark days. I live alone. I have a small fridge. I have a microwave, a small oven toaster, and a rice cooker/steamer. [more inside]
posted by pleasebekind at 11:09 PM PST - 10 comments

At-home relief for possible sleep apnea

My partner possibly has sleep apnea. They were referred for a sleep study but those aren't being done right now due to COVID-19. Daytime sleepiness is making them miserable. What can they do at home to get some relief? [more inside]
posted by brook horse at 6:02 PM PST - 28 comments

What to attach grapevine to on balcony?

I have a grapevine (planted in the ground) that finally made it up onto my balcony and is shading the table and chairs there as I had hoped. But it drapes ONTO the table and chairs, and I want it to kind of be up over them like an arbor. What should I attach it to and how? [more inside]
posted by lollusc at 5:50 PM PST - 7 comments

Reporting an employer committing ei fraud in Alberta

An employer is telling employees that they are laid off, but that they should continue working and he'll "top up" their ei if/when things return to normal. To whom do I report this? [more inside]
posted by Acari at 5:49 PM PST - 2 comments

Stretching the definition of 'digital nomad'

Lately, I've been trying to stave off cabin fever by virtually touring cities via Google Street View. Basically, I've been picking a place, setting the little icon down in a neighborhood, and following the streets in whichever direction seems interesting. So, where should I go next? Please give me your recommendation for neighborhoods/areas that are picturesque, unusual, or just places you've loved walking around in more normal times. Anywhere in the world (that the street view cars have gotten to, at least) is fair game.
posted by eponym at 5:25 PM PST - 20 comments

Coronavirus and polyamory

I've (28F) been living with and married to my wife (37F), let's call her O, for five years now. O has been dating another woman, J, for a year. O normally sees J twice a week, but O and I were doing a staycation until last Wednesday, so she didn't see J since shelter-in-place was enacted. O said to me a week before, "I've thought about it, and I'm going to continue to see J twice a week." [more inside]
posted by baptismal at 4:57 PM PST - 27 comments

What resources will help me overcome webcam jitters?

What resources will help me overcome webcam jitters? [more inside]
posted by Chaussette and the Pussy Cats at 4:03 PM PST - 9 comments

Pneumonia, "the old man's friend"?

Prior to coronavirus, I read about the unwisdom of giving the very aged the pneumonia vaccine because pneumonia was a far preferable way to die than many other common causes. Sir William Osler referred to pneumonia as "the old man's friend" because "taken off by it in an acute, not often painful illness, the old man escapes those 'cold gradations of decay' so distressing to himself and his friends." Pneumonia would often let you slip away in your sleep, etc. But all of the descriptions of pneumonia caused by coronavirus use phrases like "feeling like you are drowning," "suffocating to death," etc. Can you help me understand?
posted by HotToddy at 3:34 PM PST - 18 comments

I need a place to sit.

Like many, I'm working from home now. I need a chair that will help me do so. [more inside]
posted by pdb at 3:30 PM PST - 4 comments

Seizures of N95 Masks - Official Reasoning? Most Likely True Reasoning?

State governments are referring to seizures of N95 masks by the Trump Administration -- Somerset County, NJ (35k), Mass. (3m), Honeywell -- not to mention outbiddings. I am far from a Trump supporter, but I am wondering what they say their supposed purpose of these seizures is. Most of the social media reactions seem to come from 'keeping them out of the hands of those that need them', 'killing his own people', etc. What is the Trump Administration saying is the reasoning or strategy behind buying/outbidding these? And also, what is the most likely true reasoning or strategy behind this?
posted by WCityMike at 3:13 PM PST - 9 comments

What is this piece of studio gear?

On an synthpop music video from 10 years ago I spotted this piece of equipment that looks like a simple mixing board, but is pretty thick. It looks like an 8-track mixer or effects console, and has the style of maybe a piece of studio gear from the late 1970s. Any idea what this is exactly and who manufactures it? [more inside]
posted by rolypolyman at 3:08 PM PST - 3 comments

How should we deal with a gross unhygienic parking neighbour?

For the past couple of months, there's been a lingering urine smell in our shared parking garage for our rental townhouses; today we learned its because one of the men who owns a car three spots down has been pissing behind our car in the corner. When my Partner saw him today and asked what he was doing, he just said that "He's just taking a piss, man" and then hopped into his car and drove away. [more inside]
posted by vespertinism at 2:48 PM PST - 18 comments

Bat(s?) in the Basement

I'm pretty sure one of my cats just killed a bat in my basement. I have an old house (ca. 1901), and it's not airtight. I'm used to the occasional mouse or two, but this is my first time dealing with bats and I'm freaking out. [more inside]
posted by Sparky Buttons at 2:08 PM PST - 14 comments

Six year old can't recognize shapes -- help?

Just realized my otherwise bright six year old can't recognize basic shapes -- help? [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 2:01 PM PST - 10 comments

Software that converts a song to musical notation?

Is this a thing? Is there an app that allows you to, say, sing a tune to it or play it a recording, and it writes down the music? Do you have personal experience with such an app if it exists? How do you use it?
posted by shadygrove at 1:57 PM PST - 4 comments

How to deal - lost cat edition

My cat got out over a week ago and I can't find him. Help me cope. [more inside]
posted by maddieD at 1:45 PM PST - 8 comments

What online resources are there to learn about poetry?

I want to read poetry and to be able to dissect and understand it. I have an Eng Lit degree but this aspect of it apparently passed me right by. Do you know of any good online resources that can help me access and understand poetry better? (Other than just reading lots of poems, which you can assume I will do.)
posted by Balthamos at 12:56 PM PST - 7 comments

What's the best software for putting together a pandemic church service?

Hey guys I'm at my wits end. My tiny church is trying to adapt to weekly streaming services, and my normal role is to play piano and lead worship. I have tried to adapt PowerPoint to this task and produce a video that includes the worship music, communion video message by someone else and the sermon by our pastor, but it turns out PowerPoint is a really awkward tool for this and I can't get half the videos to play despite a full day of debugging and testing. Help! [more inside]
posted by Happydaz at 11:52 AM PST - 3 comments

Out of Egypt and into the frying pan

My parents are bringing my grandmother from her nursing home to their house for Passover. How do I convince them that they need to be more stringent about social distancing? [more inside]
posted by cosmic owl at 11:11 AM PST - 21 comments

Vetrinary degree or science degree?

My daughter wants to work in wildlife conservation: research, management, and policy. Which degree would be better for a career in wildlife: veterinary (with a big debt) or master's in environmental biology? [more inside]
posted by Miss Cellania at 11:02 AM PST - 8 comments

fashionable clothes for the top-heavy tween?

I have a top heavy tween. Help us find clothing for her. [more inside]
posted by fingersandtoes at 10:57 AM PST - 19 comments

Audiobooks that scratch the Pratchett itch?

I just finished re-reading all of Discworld! ...right before the pandemic and shelter-in-place. I need new books (preferably with audiobook editions) that scratch the same itch.
posted by ocherdraco at 10:24 AM PST - 20 comments

By what % has the death rate increased due to Trump?

A friend posted that Trump was solely to blame for Covid-19 deaths. Despite Pres. #45's malicious incompetence, wilful ignorance, etc., I think this claim is significantly extravagant. By what percentage has or will the rate of death increased because of this Administration? [more inside]
posted by theora55 at 10:08 AM PST - 25 comments

Video conferencing with password/PIN protected breakout rooms

I'm looking for almost the opposite of this query - our organisation would like to set up videoconferences where the participants aren't completely free to move between breakout rooms, but can only do so via a password or PIN so as to allow some level of self-management. [more inside]
posted by Major Clanger at 9:52 AM PST - 0 comments

Where can I buy a Ninteno Switch Console right now?

My son wants a Nintendo Switch (not Lite). Apparently there is an international shortage. He almost bought one from "some guy" on Facebook Marketplace but it turned out to be a scam and luckily the purchase was aborted. [more inside]
posted by DMelanogaster at 9:43 AM PST - 3 comments

Should I sell my twitter account for $100k?

It’s more than a twitter account for me. [more inside]
posted by thenickeldropped at 9:39 AM PST - 43 comments

Authors "who fall somewhere between Umberto Eco and Dan Brown"?

A close relative is looking for novels to read, and asked me to ask Metafilter if anyone knows of any authors who fall "somewhere between Umberto Eco and Dan Brown." He suggested that people would know what he meant by that, but I am available to pass any clarifying questions along as needed.
posted by Juffo-Wup at 8:33 AM PST - 24 comments

Hyper local news sites

Please share your favorite hyper local news sites. All areas and languages welcome.
posted by jojo and the benjamins at 8:25 AM PST - 14 comments

Help me transition from plus-size to straight-size clothing

I was Very Fat Woman and now I'm just Fat, and given my height/weight/body shape I'm right on the brink of transitioning down from 1X size into "straight sizes." This is bringing up both practical and psychological issues as I try to get new clothes, mostly via online shopping. [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 5:15 AM PST - 15 comments

Best way to scan books at home?

I am looking for a way to scan books to PDFs at home, now that (in the time of coronavirus) I don't have access to book scanners that I otherwise would. I have an iPhone XR; is there an app for this? I've tried several, and haven't found anything that does a great job.
posted by Noisy Pink Bubbles at 4:48 AM PST - 5 comments

April 4

Zoom Safari

I just watched the "Customer Safari" episode of Superstore and want to brainstorm a Zoom version of this. [more inside]
posted by jenfullmoon at 9:01 PM PST - 2 comments

Plague stories

I'm listening to the audiobook of A Journal of the Plague Year and I find it oddly comforting as a reminder that we as humans survive these catastrophes. Can you point me to other epidemic literature? [more inside]
posted by latkes at 7:38 PM PST - 41 comments

Frog bra alternatives?

Recommend me a sports bra that's the next best thing to Title Nine's Frog Bra, but without the big ugly straps. [more inside]
posted by waffleriot at 5:14 PM PST - 13 comments

What does this fine print mean?

My hair salon sent out an email asking people to buy gift cards now while they're closed. I was all set to do it, but then I read the fine print, and I'm a little confused. [more inside]
posted by swheatie at 4:58 PM PST - 23 comments

Obscure Song Filter: A Secret Place

This is such a long shot but I'd love to hear this song again - an indie recording circa 2001 - 2005 [more inside]
posted by chocolatepeanutbuttercup at 4:37 PM PST - 7 comments

How Do I Find Out What Shoes I'm Wearing?

Please help me, if you can, figure out what model running shoes I have. I need new ones and can't go in to a store to get fitted. Details after the jump. [more inside]
posted by WalkerWestridge at 4:06 PM PST - 10 comments

The most fun you can have with the lights on

Help me think of indoor activities for couples, besides the obvious one. (Or, at the risk of chatfilter: what hobbies and projects are you and your partner doing to pass the quarantime together?) [more inside]
posted by tapir-whorf at 4:00 PM PST - 27 comments

How do I... put my camera on this tripod?

I bought a Cameron T100BH tripod, and the top of it looks like this. My camera (Fujifilm X-70) has the normal screw-type thing at the bottom to attach to a tripod. I was too embarrassed to go back and ask the camera store about this, but is there a way this camera can attach to this tripod that I am missing, or is there an adaptor I can get? [more inside]
posted by ITheCosmos at 3:41 PM PST - 11 comments

Can I paint an N95 mask with watercolors?

And have it still more or less work? [more inside]
posted by mygothlaundry at 3:26 PM PST - 10 comments

Help me visit nature in my mind

I was watching a movie today with many scenes set in nature and noticed that if I concentrated on the scenes, I could feel as if I was in a forest or another natural settings. Are there any guided meditations available online that take you on a journey through nature, where you are focused on the sensory experience? Thinking of narratives/meditations where all of the senses are engaged (in your mind).
posted by rogerroger at 3:03 PM PST - 4 comments

In search of a pasta receipe that uses canned artichokes!

I need a recipe FAST for a pasta dish that uses canned artichokes. I have: pasta. two cans of artichokes. some half and half. Parmesan cheese. I do NOT have spinach or lemon or tomatoes. [more inside]
posted by silverstatue at 2:50 PM PST - 9 comments

Artisan Chocolatiers in Your City

One of the ways I'm trying to a) support local businesses and b) keep some fun in my life while I sit at home is by ordering fancy chocolate. Do you have a local chocolatier in your area that delivers nationally? [more inside]
posted by something something at 2:36 PM PST - 48 comments

The Blog of an Orthodox virgin

Years ago I read a great anonynous blog by an Orthodox Jewish woman who was unable to be matched with a husband of her liking in her community, so she expected to be single for life. She wanted to experience sex, but couldn't figure out how to do it without compromising her values or safety. She wrote thoughtfully about this predicament. Anyone remember what the blog was? [more inside]
posted by nouvelle-personne at 1:10 PM PST - 7 comments

What is this thing on the ceiling of a hallway of our new house?

We bought a house before the pandemic - a good move it turns out, thank goodness - and were finally able to move in this weekend. While the move has been surprisingly smooth, we're puzzled by a 3-4" something on the ceiling of a small hallway above the laundry nook. It neither looks like a sprinkler or an electrical box. Any ideas?
posted by eschatfische at 12:43 PM PST - 18 comments

sharp shoulder spasm

I have experienced sudden onset of intense spasm. upper inside corner of my right scapula. mostly when I breath too deeply or move a certain way. I have full range of motion in my arm and do not feel that my breathing is obstructed. normally I would call the advice nurse (which I am going to do) or just go in, except not a great time, is it? [more inside]
posted by supermedusa at 12:03 PM PST - 7 comments

M.E.T.A. brought us together

What might be the significance of wearing white robes in Theravada (or other Buddhism schools), especially after having worn saffron? (Song lyric question.) [more inside]
posted by michaelh at 11:30 AM PST - 4 comments

USB C Hub stops USB A Headset from working

Problems with remote work setup. Details below... [more inside]
posted by The Architect at 11:27 AM PST - 4 comments

Make a PDF of all the first pages of PDFs

I have a large number of e-books in PDF format. I would like to print just the covers and put them in a folder so I can browse through them. The easiest way would be to extract the first page of each to a single PDF and then print that. How to do. I am on a windows PC and don't want to spend any money.
posted by Iteki at 10:40 AM PST - 5 comments

Mansard? More like man-hazard!

How can I protect myself against my own eavestrough? [more inside]
posted by Mrs. Rattery at 10:19 AM PST - 6 comments

Best scripts for table reads with friends?

My group of friends and I want to start socializing by doing Zoom table reads of different scripts and screenplays. What are your suggestions? [more inside]
posted by thelastpolarbear at 9:49 AM PST - 19 comments

Pandemic Bingo

In an effort to break up the boredom and provide some stress relief, we'd like to start a Bingo game amongst our group of stay at homers. Instead of numbers and letters, we're using COVID-19 pandemic themed phrases and words inside the boxes to mark off. We need a few more to fill out the bingo cards. [more inside]
posted by newpotato at 9:35 AM PST - 22 comments

The mixer is dead. Long live the mixer!

The noises and smell say that I just about killed my ~20 year old 325W Kitchenaid mixer. 575W Kitchenaid or Bosch universal+? [more inside]
posted by GCU Sweet and Full of Grace at 8:49 AM PST - 20 comments

Cozy cheery

I'd like to learn more about designing cozy apartment spaces -- less Design-y design, more cheerily lived-in and generous. But I'd still like to find frameworks/ways of thinking about design. Any books, videos, podcasts, etc you'd recommend? [more inside]
posted by elephantsvanish at 8:35 AM PST - 11 comments

Should I go to the dentist?

I am not sure whether I should go to the dentist now, or wait. Can you help me work it out? [more inside]
posted by kinddieserzeit at 8:10 AM PST - 7 comments

Is there any way I can pay my rent without going to a bank branch?

I make a deposit into my landlord's business bank account. [more inside]
posted by unannihilated at 6:01 AM PST - 16 comments

COVID19: can/should I go home again?

I left NYC at the end of February to help out with a family emergency. I subsequently got COVID and recovered. Should I go back to NYC? [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 5:55 AM PST - 12 comments

Questions about being unfairly accused of assault

I have been accused of an assault I didn't do. My anxiety levels, which were already through the roof due to coronavirus, are now life-threateningly high. I have never been accused of anything more serious than parking illegally, and I know very little about the courts. I am hoping that people can answer some of my more basic questions about how this process goes, and that a lowered level of uncertainty will help me calm down. [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 5:54 AM PST - 16 comments

Boss spreading misinformation about Covid-19. Help.

On Monday, I overheard my boss at a weekly pep-talk meeting with his road crew explain that the coronavirus isn't airborne and that you only have to worry about direct contact with someone who is showing symptoms. [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 5:54 AM PST - 8 comments

Where are tall fences common in the U.S. other than California?

I like living in dense areas but also really value having private outdoor space. In cities like L.A., it's common to have tall fences in both front and back yards. I'm sure this is partly because the weather is so nice it's possible to outside most of the time, and yards are also tiny. Where else are fences like this common (or even allowed)? I'm interested in much less expensive cities. [more inside]
posted by pinochiette at 5:46 AM PST - 15 comments

(Shitty) love in the time of coronavirus

I was just walked out upon and ghosted. By someone I've dated for months. I want some guidance about how to respond while I'm feeling really angry. [more inside]
posted by pando11 at 2:20 AM PST - 21 comments

April 3

Another Coronavirus/COVID-19 custody question

I've read the earlier post about this issue but my situation is slightly different and I'd like an outside perspective. I'm one of the parents in the custody arrangement but I'll phrase the question as neutrally as possible to avoid bias. [more inside]
posted by mezzanayne at 11:08 PM PST - 24 comments

Never believe the first report!

My father was a foreign service officer for many years, and vividly recalls on someone’s desk in the late 1960s or early 1970s probably at main State but perhaps at the Pentagon or even in an officer’s quarters in Vietnam a sign which was something to the effect of “general so-and-so’s rules for dealing with Southeast Asia.” [more inside]
posted by eglenner at 10:43 PM PST - 2 comments

GGEZ

I love single-player PC games, especially RPGs, but I am useless without automatic targeting and an easy difficulty mode. I like a good story, amazing graphics and walking around talking to people. What game would you recommend? I asked you this six years ago, and you really came through for me -- what's new? Please suggest only new games -- games from the last six years or so. [more inside]
posted by pH Indicating Socks at 10:15 PM PST - 15 comments

SUPER far fetched - findig someone in nyc

i'm in va, a friend has gone missing in nyc. how can i help look for him? [more inside]
posted by megan_magnolia at 8:49 PM PST - 3 comments

Is my electrical outlet damaged? Unsafe?

An iPhone charger was loosely plugged into an outlet in my kitchen, partially hanging out, when a piece of aluminum foil bumped onto it. The foil formed a short between the prongs of the plug, resulting in an arc and tripping the ground fault protection of a nearby outlet. [more inside]
posted by Jpfed at 7:46 PM PST - 6 comments

Home Electrical work

No, you are not my electrician, and maybe I should hire one. but I think my homeowner skills are up to this. I've added plenty of outlets and switches but my most complicated wiring was a new 3-way switch setup. I want to add a new 20A circuit breaker/circuit to my main electric panel. The original panel is inside, and the outside main was added before my time when service was upgraded. Can I do this safely w/o compromising the service/load? [more inside]
posted by TDIpod at 5:56 PM PST - 14 comments

NYC rent strike / withholding resources

My building is attempting to organize. Housing Justice For All promised a toolkit available April 1, but I don't see it on their website. What resources should my building be aware of? How should we go about exploring various options? [more inside]
posted by schadenfrau at 1:29 PM PST - 6 comments

Online Business

A friend of mine is a speech therapist. Due to social distancing and quarantine, she is finding a lot of business success with online speech therapy. What other service related business which have traditionally been face-to-face will also become successful in a Zoom connected world? For example, I would imagine some form of physical therapy could be achieved remotely, albeit not as effective as face-to-face.
posted by jasondigitized at 1:23 PM PST - 24 comments

Home made facemask question: floppy ears edition

We are attempting to make our own facemasks here with a bandana. But as it says in the title I have floppy ears (I used to absently fold them all the time when I was a child) and now because of this the elastic straps don't stay on. We've created a version when it just wraps around the back on my head but it keeps slipping. Could anyone offer any tips on how to create a good fitting mask with my Bert from Sesame Street ears ?
posted by Webbster at 1:10 PM PST - 18 comments

Tablet closest to pen and paper for grading essays?

What tablet will most closely resemble the experience of grading papers with a pen on an 8 1/2 X 11 piece of paper? I [more inside]
posted by tomorrow at 1:04 PM PST - 8 comments

How are you washing your produce?

I'm trying to work out if I should change my produce washing ways during this time. I usually rinse them (and rub) under cold water if it's a large piece of fruit or vegetable (like apple or potato) and soak in a mix of vinegar and cold water and then rinse clean with cold water for small things (grapes or brussels sprouts). These days, I have heard of people using hot water and even soap. Is that really necessary?
posted by massofintuition at 12:51 PM PST - 14 comments

Give me your livestream recommendations!

For the past few weeks at noon PST on Fridays, Colin Meloy of the Decemberists (@dullandwitlessboy on Instagram) has been performing on Instagram live and it's been such a nice thing to look forward to. What upcoming or regularly scheduled stuff on Instagram Live, Facebook Live, Twitch, etc. are you watching? Music is great, but I'd love to hear about anything that's bringing you joy.
posted by LadyNibbler at 12:16 PM PST - 17 comments

Should I buy a sewing machine?

How have you found having a sewing machine materially useful? Or is it more of just an aesthetic hobby? [more inside]
posted by stoneandstar at 11:46 AM PST - 32 comments

Mystery Snack

Way back in the 70's my grandmother (in Louisville, KY) used to have these chips/snacks that I can only partially remember (I was like 8 or 9) as coming in either a bag or a box that had a cartoon on the back which illustrated the manufacture of said snack. I can't remember much, but the illustration showed (I think) potatoes being sliced then they were being expressed as flakes onto a conveyor belt. [more inside]
posted by valkane at 11:42 AM PST - 7 comments

What is this recipe: red wine and cherry pie edition

I used to have a recipe for a very special cherry pie. It had a chocolate crust, and called for one or two lbs. of dried cherries that you soaked in red wine. Where did this recipe come from, what is it called, and would anyone be willing to send it to me? I’ve decided that this is the stress baking project I need today. Thanks, folks!
posted by unstrungharp at 11:29 AM PST - 5 comments

Can I eat FROM it? White specks on my Wagner Ware Magnalite roaster

I have a Wagner Ware Magnalite roaster that I use and love. I recently used it like a humidifier kettle on top of our wood stove, and white specks appeared on the sides. Was it safe to use for cooking before this happened, and is it now? [more inside]
posted by daisyace at 11:04 AM PST - 3 comments

Stick with the big name realty office or use the individual realtor?

We're talking about moving. Should we use the same realty office (owned by a big name realtor who is a family friend) we used to buy our current home, or should we go with the amazing realtor who did our showings and is now out on his own? [more inside]
posted by Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drug at 10:54 AM PST - 3 comments

YouTube Channel - best way to substitute edited video for livestream?

My organization did a livestreamed event on YouTube this week that has been getting a lot of views on the archived livestream. We've now edited the subtitles for the published one, and we're putting it up. Anything to keep in mind in that process - not breaking other people's links, etc? [more inside]
posted by mercredi at 10:52 AM PST - 1 comment

What is the best paint pen for touch ups on chipped paint.

I need to touch up chipped paint on both furniture and my white or off white walls. Thank you in advance.
posted by Tziv at 10:35 AM PST - 1 comment

I can see clearly now, the grime is gone

Please help us get our windows clean. Complication: we're on the third floor. [more inside]
posted by Lexica at 10:05 AM PST - 5 comments

Helping my brother with covid19 in NYC

My immunocompromised brother in NYC has covid19. I want to get him some supplies, but am a continent away and deliveries seem to be slow to nonexistent. What are my options? [more inside]
posted by congen at 9:40 AM PST - 14 comments

Ideas for play space in a smaller yard?

We have a small sandbox. Other ideas? Kids range in age from 4-9. If there’s something with a mid-century look, we’d especially love that. [more inside]
posted by areaperson at 9:28 AM PST - 9 comments

What is the best translation of this from Latin to English?

Robert Boyle quotes Paracelsus (in De Mineralibus Tractatus) as saying this about minerals: "Sed et hoc verum est, in terra multa adhuc condi, quae mihi incognita sunt, sed eadem nec alii norunt. Certum siquidem est, progressu temporis tot tamque varia à Deo adhuc proditum iri, de quibus nemo nostrum nedum unquam somniavit." [image] What is a good translation of this into English?
posted by Philosopher Dirtbike at 7:46 AM PST - 2 comments

Show me the absurd side of Twiter

OK, so People dancing to Steely Dan hit me the right way--silly, witty, a little absurd. (Soviet Soldiers Dancing isn't quite as good for me, but has the right idea.) Which other Twitter accounts will hit the sweet spot of ridiculous pairings that make me bark-laugh? Need not be dancing--just amusing juxtapositions of any kind. (Other styles of silliness welcome. If it makes you cackle, share, please.)
posted by MonkeyToes at 7:23 AM PST - 15 comments

Dog likes being petted but doesn’t show it

My dog, who is otherwise expressive and affectionate, lays like a lump on a log while being petted. She occasionally rolls over to offer her belly or bears into a head scritch and she always reacts when I stop petting, but for the most part there is zero movement. Is this normal? Is there anything I can do to get her to let me know what she likes and doesn’t? [more inside]
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 6:57 AM PST - 12 comments

Other Instagram accounts like Livinthefuture?

Do you know other Instagram accounts like Livinthefuture, mentioned previously? It's a graphic novel presented as the Instagram account of a fictional protagonist.
posted by bleston hamilton station at 6:33 AM PST - 1 comment

We're not doing the pottery wheel scene from ghost.

It's my 9th Wedding Anniversary. So I need some ideas of pottery themed activities that can be done in London in Late June. Please do bear in mind the possibility that we may (or may not?) still be living in a terrible dystopian future at that point. [more inside]
posted by Just this guy, y'know at 5:59 AM PST - 7 comments

I wish there was no knead for this question

Another baking question: I've done 6 or 7 loaves following the Jim Lahey book basic recipe and technique to the letter (I believe). The crust always comes out super tough and bitter/burnt tasting, although not overly dark I don't think. I'm baking in a dutch oven, and using a hanging inside the oven thermometer so I think the temp is ok. How do I get a more tender crust?
posted by CheeseLouise at 5:18 AM PST - 18 comments

Resources like "Back Mechanic," but focused on ppl who use desks/comps?

I'm someone who needs to use a computer. I found Back Mechanic, but it didn't seem to speak directly to the specific set of issues facing people who sit (or stand) at a desk all day. I'm looking for resources that have a similar "outlook" to Back Mechanic (well researched, based in clinical experience), but specifically oriented towards desk workers. [more inside]
posted by wooh at 3:29 AM PST - 5 comments

How to move internationally now?

I was offered a stable job in my home country. I am currently in Japan. How does this work?? [more inside]
posted by LoonyLovegood at 12:04 AM PST - 9 comments

April 2

What's your experience applying for a PPP loan?

The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) is part of the recently-passed CARES Act, the coronavirus relief bill. It permits small businesses/nonprofits to apply for loans which can later be forgiven if used for payroll and a few other things. It's supposed to go live Fri April 3 with money channeled through the SBA down to your bank where you apply for the loan. But it seems the banks have no clue. I couldn't get any answers. What's your experience? [more inside]
posted by mono blanco at 9:39 PM PST - 16 comments

FB Deleting Notifications?

Recently FB has just been... Deleting my notifications. This is on the website, in Firefox 74.0 on Desktop. I'll see the red number badge over the bell, indicating x notifications. I click, and they're not there. Sometimes they repopulate, other times they don't. [more inside]
posted by symbioid at 8:02 PM PST - 8 comments

Violence in 1987 TV series Beauty and the Beast?

Does the violence of the first episode continue at a similar rate through the series or does it ease off? How safe is the show for someone who is triggered by depictions of sexual or gender based violence? [more inside]
posted by Coaticass at 7:39 PM PST - 3 comments

Can I Go On Unemployment If I Leave Work Temporarily Due To Coronavirus?

I work in a butcher shop in Los Angeles. We have been dealing with an intense flow of people over the past few weeks. It was only yesterday that we closed the shop and are are only accepting on-line orders. I am unable to contact the state as I am working the counter during the hours the Unemployment offices are open and cannot spend the time needed to remain on hold [more inside]
posted by goalyeehah at 6:47 PM PST - 4 comments

Mediterranean on Ice

I'm looking for Mediterranean diet recipes that 1) are inexpensive to make, and 2) can be made in batches (i.e., 9-12 servings) and frozen for later use. Hit me, Metafilter!
posted by orange swan at 6:19 PM PST - 3 comments

Can I donate a N95 mask to a health care facility?

I was going through my stuff and found I still have an unused N95 mask that I had for when I work outside to avoid allergies. I could use it myself but think it would go to better use by a health care worker. [more inside]
posted by Justin Case at 5:09 PM PST - 8 comments

Talking games

My friends and I call every day now, and conversation topics have started to get low, so we need some game ideas. Please help me find some two-person games that can be played over the telephone and don’t require any materials! [more inside]
posted by Margalo Epps at 4:30 PM PST - 16 comments

In the age of COVID distancing, how to support someone who's dying?

I'm looking for practical ways to support and connect with my father-in-law, who is dying of cancer, and (even more so) his wife, my mother-in-law, who is his full-time caregiver. We are doing daily phone calls. What else can we be doing? [more inside]
posted by lollusc at 4:13 PM PST - 9 comments

I want an advance directive for health right meow.

This is a UK friend's question. "I don't want CPR and I don't want a ventilator if I come down with the Rona. I don't want to go to a hospital at all, if possible. What forms I need to sign and how do I accomplish the distancing requirements for the witness? My temperature is 37.4 and was lower in the last few days, so I really don't want to risk passing it on if I've got it."
posted by Mistress at 3:40 PM PST - 7 comments

Grocery delivered GF flour instead of regular

I am unfortunately in possession of 5 lbs of Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free AP flour, the result of having ordered regular AP flour from the grocery for delivery. Asking to return it would make me an asshole (right?) but it was super expensive and there’s an awful lot of it. So can you point me to the Smitten Kitchen of GF baking? I’m looking for the one most reliable source of GF recipes on the Internet. (Also, is this considered a good GF flour?)
posted by HotToddy at 3:13 PM PST - 19 comments

Slightly obscure non-fiction book recommendations?

My grandmother's currently stuck at home for the obvious reason, and she is feeling a bit isolated. I'd like to figure out some books we could read at the same time and chat about over the phone. Unfortunately, she's a non-fiction reader, and when I have enough time to read, I tend to prioritize fiction. I'd appreciate any suggestions the collective MeFi mind can come up with! A few caveats inside: [more inside]
posted by ASF Tod und Schwerkraft at 3:02 PM PST - 51 comments

What should I look for in a wooden playset?

We’d like to put a wooden playset (swings, slide, platform) in our yard this spring. I normally research large purchases extensively, but it doesn’t seem possible to find unbiased information for these products online. Looking for any recommended brands or places to shop, and planning to spend $1k or less. [more inside]
posted by kyleg at 2:36 PM PST - 6 comments

Can we eat it: shelf stable foods left in car

To kill the coronavirus with time, I left groceries in the trunk of the car for about a week. The car has been kept outside only (not in the garage). It's ranged from the 40s to the high 60s in that time, but of course higher in the trunk. [more inside]
posted by nantucket at 2:27 PM PST - 9 comments

Moving question, smaller town near a bigger city edition

My latest coping mechanism is daydreaming about future times and moving to a new place. Help me figure out where to move in a year or two! [more inside]
posted by switcheroo at 2:20 PM PST - 12 comments

Unemployment Question - falling through the cracks

I have been out of the formal workforce for 5 years. I started a business last year but that ended with my lease, and since then I have been doing freelance art jobs. I recently started working part time at a studio and they don't hire people directly, rather "1099" them, and there was no formal work contract. That ended with the quarantine order here in NYC. I was hired months ago to work for The Census with a start date around March 10, but they are frozen right now. My husband has been unemployed for 2 years, aside from a couple of freelance contract jobs that were very short term. So, does anyone know if I should/could apply for unemployment. Complications below: [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 2:08 PM PST - 5 comments

Baking 101, pandemic edition

Help, I panic-bought some flour and yeast, I'd like to learn how to bake savory things, what now? [more inside]
posted by lunasol at 1:55 PM PST - 22 comments

who does twitter recommend to you?

Because of the gendering and racializing of expertise, I don't follow men who primarily retweet other men, even when I like their work as journalists, scientists, etc. And yet... I've noticed that Twitter almost always recommends men and more often not, white-appearing men, in "You might like" and "Relevant people." People who use Twitter (while logged in), who does Twitter recommend to you? [more inside]
posted by spamandkimchi at 1:15 PM PST - 14 comments

Older call log on an iPhone?

Sometime in January, I made a phone call. I still know which number I called, but now I'd like to know the date of that call. It's too old to show up in the "Recent Call Log" on my iPhone XR. Is there a way to pull up the date of the call?
posted by nouvelle-personne at 12:50 PM PST - 3 comments

What is causing these the symptoms in my car that probably isn't CO?

Whenever I use our car, I get a headache or a heavy head and sometimes tingling lips (depending on length of journey). Basically a feeling that the air in the car isn't 'good'. My initial thought was CO poisoning so I put a CO alarm in the car. But it hasn't sounded once despite being in there months. There's a 'dirty fumes' smell around the bonnet area when you're OUTSIDE the car but you don't really smell it on the inside. Is it possible that dirty air filters can cause these symptoms? Thanks guys
posted by dance at 12:36 PM PST - 7 comments

Can I eat it? Sushi rice

I have an unopened bag of Lundberg Sushi Rice with a best before of 20170503. Yes or no?
posted by kokaku at 12:16 PM PST - 8 comments

My amazon fire tablet was stolen and is being used. How to get IP Adress

My Amazon Fire Tablet was stolen over 4 months ago (with a ton of other sh_t in my backpack, huge financial loss) in Europe. 1. The thief or current "owner" is buying free ebooks on my amazon account 2. I have installed google play on the amazon fire tab. It was first used again today and find my device displayed the quite unique name of the WiFi network. How do I get the IP address from Google and or Amazon so that I can report it to the police?
posted by yoyo_nyc at 12:13 PM PST - 7 comments

Can I eat/consume it? Fish oil caps circa 2015

1000mg Kirkland fish oil caps that expired 2015 - use or toss? [more inside]
posted by kilohertz at 11:41 AM PST - 10 comments

Video meeting/party where people can move freely between small groups?

Is there a way to allow participants in Zoom (or another similar system) to talk in small groups, and move freely between groups? Zoom lets you you divide a group into breakout rooms, but only the meeting host can create rooms and move people between them. I'm looking for workarounds and/or other systems that would give participants more freedom. I want this for conferences/meetings and also for cocktail parties. Do you have any ideas/suggestions? Have you seen anything like this done? [more inside]
posted by ManInSuit at 10:24 AM PST - 10 comments

VMs For Social Good

I'm looking for VMs or apps which help out the social good that can be run on some idle hardware I have. [more inside]
posted by JustAnotherPerson at 9:51 AM PST - 2 comments

Is my small business (guest house Airbnb rental) eligible for CARE funds

We are wondering whether our small business (small guest suite that we primarily rent on airbnb) could be eligible for some of the small business CARE funds. I'd like to pay someone to consult with them about whether we could be eligible and (ideally) get some help applying. What is the title of this type of specialist (and do you have any recommendations)? I'm in CA if it matters. [more inside]
posted by arnicae at 9:48 AM PST - 8 comments

Apple Cloud Recipe Needed (from FSM @ UCB)

I am in search of a suitable clone recipe for the Apple Cloud I used to get at the Free Speech Movement Cafe at U.C. Berkeley. [more inside]
posted by Temeraria at 9:25 AM PST - 2 comments

Calorie tracker for those who eat actual food?

Covid-induced stress eating has prompted me to start tracking calories again. Most of the apps for this focus on packaged and restaurant food where I eat mostly whole foods that have no barcode to scan. I’ve also noticed that the food databases for many apps are user generated and thus full of errors so I’d like to avoid that too. Is there an app that’s better for this kind of thing? I don’t mind paying if it’s good.
posted by genmonster at 8:52 AM PST - 17 comments

Soaking beans

Food safety question: okay to eat black beans that were soaked on the counter 15-16 hours? Usually we soak about 6-8 hours but forgot to cook earlier. Started around 830 last night, it’s about 10am now. Room temp is 68-70ish. [more inside]
posted by john_snow at 7:28 AM PST - 24 comments

Power me up! Acer laptop adapter needed -but which?

The power cord for my Acer Spin 3 needs replacing. I can buy one direct from Acer, but it's pricey and shipping timelines are vague. I'm hoping to get this quickly and am wondering if there is a suitable option on Amazon Canada. [more inside]
posted by walkinginsunshine at 5:51 AM PST - 1 comment

Bread is fab, don't get me wrong. But I also want to eat other things!

For lack of any other flour in the store, I bought a few kgs of ''all-in'' bread mix in different variations (white, wheat, brown, etc). It's the kind where you just add water. What else can I do with it besides, you know, make bread? [more inside]
posted by hasna at 4:20 AM PST - 10 comments

"Hemingway" quote check

Lately people around me have been quoting Ernest Hemingway, from "A Farewell to Arms", saying: [more inside]
posted by chavenet at 1:17 AM PST - 4 comments

April 1

Help me make LOOSE masks for medically vulnerable people to wear

I am trying to balance protection and comfort and ease of wearing. The PPE that I have made at home, from fabric, has been on the tight side aka I would wear it in an infectious area but wouldn't wear it through the day. [more inside]
posted by societypages at 11:44 PM PST - 13 comments

Modding Steripen Adventurer (optical) for surface disinfection

I'm trying to turn my Steripen Adventurer UV water disinfecter into something I can use on surfaces for, well you can probably guess why. Problem is that this model uses an optical sensor to sense water and prevent it from turning on elsewhere. This means, unlike older models, I can't just short the probes. Any engineering types know of a way that I might be able to bypass the optical sensor to force the UV light to turn on? Could it be as simple as covering the sensor with something I might have around? No need to warn me about voiding my warranty, messing around with UV, or unproven efficacy, please. I'm a biomedical engineer, so I'm well aware of the risks! Thanks!
posted by beammeup4 at 10:59 PM PST - 5 comments

Cake flour conundrum

So when me and the Mater went through the pantry for optimum organization and storage during a pandemic reasons- we found a lot of cake flour. And bread flour- but I know what to do with that. (bread). My AP stores are lower than I'd like, but that seems to be true of everyone. But cake flour- what can you do with that? (besides cakes, but also including cakes) My special complication is no dairy whatsoever but I'd like to know all your favorite recipes that involve cake flour for IDK bread, cakes, cookies, ETC ETC. [more inside]
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 10:17 PM PST - 9 comments

What's the best way to organize my computer cords?

Does anyone have a good system for organizing/managing their collection of random computer cords? [more inside]
posted by NoneOfTheAbove at 9:03 PM PST - 20 comments

Should I wear a mask to use Uber?

I haven’t been out in a month and have to use Uber to pick up prescriptions that aren’t eligible for delivery. The city just recommended masks; the only one I have is a surgical mask a neighbor left on all the doors in the building. Should I wear it? [more inside]
posted by dianeF at 6:35 PM PST - 16 comments

Recommend an MP3 player for elderly person with no tech skills?

I'd like to get a very, very basic media playback device to give to my grandma during quarantine, so I can provide her podcasts, radio stories, things in her native language, etc. to entertain her. However, she is extremely poor with technology; she frequently has issues with even the radio on her bose alarm clock. [more inside]
posted by unid41 at 6:31 PM PST - 11 comments

Strange cat behavior

We’re fostering a kitty due to COVID-19. She’s 9 years and blind. I’m not sure why she’s blind since her eyes look pretty clear and her pupils react to light. She came from a hoarder situation and lived with 80 other cats, so who knows what she’s been through. [more inside]
posted by hazel79 at 6:05 PM PST - 5 comments

Free diabetic toenail trims in Seattle?

A friend needs to know, and my ideas of who to call are stumped. Even mentioning places that used to do it, so I can call them and see how they're handling the stay-in-place orders, would help a lot.
posted by clew at 5:54 PM PST - 9 comments

Un-deleting Zoom default virtual backgrounds

Can't believe I'm wasting a question on this, but -- I accidentally clicked the delete button on one of the default virtual backgrounds in Zoom (the outer space one). How do I get it back? [more inside]
posted by serelliya at 5:54 PM PST - 5 comments

Consider the Pizza Roll

Of all the stuffed foods in the world, which does the Pizza Roll most closely resemble? I will accept justification based on shape, fillings, encasement ingredients, history, etc. Apologies if this is too discussiony, but the best answer does have a real world application. [more inside]
posted by Grandysaur at 5:05 PM PST - 17 comments

Résumé services in Seattle?

Looking for a professional to help with résumé and LinkedIn stuff for an early-career software developer in Seattle. [more inside]
posted by palmcorder_yajna at 5:01 PM PST - 2 comments

A Keyboard Stroke of Annoyance

In the past few days, my keyboard has started thinking that I want to type a math symbol. I don't. When I type a combination of [Shift] and [command], sometimes I hit them just right, and the computer outputs this symbol: ± [more inside]
posted by hydra77 at 4:29 PM PST - 5 comments

Poetry for the lonely

I am alone in a small apartment, observing the social distancing rules that are in place for the foreseeable future. So, like many of us, I feel quite lonely. (Also quite broken-hearted, which doesn't help.) I'd like to read some poetry. Can we collectively compile a corona-inspired collection of poems that somehow make our isolation more bearable? [more inside]
posted by Desertshore at 3:14 PM PST - 30 comments

How to carrot-based vegetarian ramen broth?

A local-to-me (but not local enough for take-out at present) ramen place says their vegetarian ramen broth is somehow or other carrot based? It's creamier and tastier than many other vegetarian ramen broths I have had. Sadly, my google-fu is apparently not up to finding a recipe. Do you have such a recipe? Do you have thoughts, ideas, or educated guesses about what such a recipe might look like? Do you have any good links about multiple options for vegetarian ramen broths in general?
posted by eviemath at 3:09 PM PST - 16 comments

Brand new PC (HP) won't connect via connector.

It was time, after working with this 7 year old lap top that now has black holes in the screen. [more inside]
posted by Rumi'sLeftSock at 2:55 PM PST - 17 comments

Subcutaneous Injections: how?

I have to give myself a subcutaneous injection in the stomach from a prepared needle twice a day for the next little while. I think I'm doing it wrong. You've done it before. Walk me through it please? [more inside]
posted by mygothlaundry at 2:22 PM PST - 21 comments

List of companies that *are* looking after their employees?

I'd like to support companies that *are* providing sick leave and safer working conditions for their employees during this pandemic. If I need to order something to be delivered online, what's the most ethical company to go with? [more inside]
posted by EllaEm at 1:51 PM PST - 12 comments

Dogs and heart failure - can you tell me what you did?

Our dear old pup has a pretty strong heart murmur that I think is trending into congestive heart failure. Can you tell me about your personal experience managing this? I’d also appreciate any resources for learning more about the prognosis. [more inside]
posted by robertthebruce at 1:28 PM PST - 7 comments

Hello smol cake fren

I would like to start baking small pretty cakes, and as I don't care for sweets don't have any experience. What I have in mind is a sort of bakery-pretty two layer cakes that would provide two reasonable (not huge) slices or portions. Like the sort of thing you would make for a dessert for two, or give to a friend. Should I get 4" pans? 6"? (Since I'm shopping online now it's hard to visualize.) And where to find recipes that are scaled down? Thank you!
posted by 2soxy4mypuppet at 12:25 PM PST - 11 comments

What's the best Mac App Store App for burning a DVD?

I have been using Toast DVD to burn an MP4 video file for family and friends. Yesterday it decided to start crashing in the middle of burning for no apparent reason so I need to find a new app ASAP. The Mac App Store makes it really hard to assess if an app will do what I want to do so I've been buying up apps that turn out to not have the features I need - I was wondering if you could help me skip that step. Help me before I run out of blank DVDs! [more inside]
posted by bleep at 12:16 PM PST - 6 comments

What's the best way to fax a PDF without a landline?

I have a packet of forms as a PDF that I need to get to a doctor ASAP for some medical stuff. Their office wants these documents by fax, not email. I'm stuck at home with no fax machine or even a landline, but lots of internet access. [more inside]
posted by COBRA! at 11:31 AM PST - 9 comments

Horrible Timing?

My mother is very close to me. I recently realized she has never had a photo taken of her with me and my brothers and sisters all in one photo. Luck would find me in a Facebook page and a very talented artist there drew a photo and I was so impressed I commissioned him to draw this family portrait. It was not cheap. [more inside]
posted by The_imp_inimpossible at 11:17 AM PST - 14 comments

What can I use this flavored powdered sugar for?

A few months ago, I had a couple tablespoons of orange zest leftover from a recipe. I added it to about 2 cups of powdered sugar (didn't have granulated on hand) and left it in an airtight container. I'm looking for recipes to use it in which won't obscure the delicate citrus taste of the sugar. [more inside]
posted by Everydayville at 11:09 AM PST - 12 comments

I already have the cat. Now I need the music.

What instrumental-only acoustic music/artists must must I listen to for my life to be complete? [more inside]
posted by headnsouth at 10:29 AM PST - 26 comments

Life After Fire

Last night, the house we were staying at burned down. My husband woke up, thank god, yelled fire and we got out with our baby, phone, car keys, wallet. Now what? [more inside]
posted by neematoad at 10:25 AM PST - 8 comments

Branching out from Earthboxes

I've been growing cherry tomatoes, baby eggplants, cucumbers, potatoes, peas, and strawberries in containers (mostly Earthboxes) for a few years. I now have access to a small backyard as well and would like to branch out, but I have no experience growing vegetables in the ground (only flowers). Can you recommend some beginner resources? [more inside]
posted by marfa, texas at 10:18 AM PST - 7 comments

What is the current situation in South Korea?

I am looking for information about both daily life and government policy in South Korea right now, specifically regarding coronavirus. I know that schools are closed, lots of people wear masks, and there is aggressive testing and tracing. But how much are people eating out? Are businesses closing? How is life different now relative to two months ago? Do people feel the current situation is sustainable?
posted by molla at 9:44 AM PST - 4 comments

Help Me to Remember High School Football

First question on Ask. I searched for answers to my question but didn't find my specifics. Thanks for your help. I am looking for information about schedules for varsity high school football teams. Bonus points if you or your child play/played varsity high school football. Extra bonus points if your high school was in upstate New York. Extra extra extra bonus points if you played around 1997 - 2001. [more inside]
posted by cursed at 9:25 AM PST - 9 comments

What is going to happen to the housing market?

We were hoping to buy a home in the next year or two. What might happen? [more inside]
posted by k8t at 8:53 AM PST - 19 comments

paleogeology and paleoclimatology publications

I seem to have an interest in paleogeology and paleoclimatology. Are there any dead-tree publications that I could subscribe to? [more inside]
posted by falsedmitri at 8:46 AM PST - 1 comment

Does a runny nose mean I've failed at social distancing?

We've been sheltering in place for over 2 weeks now and I just got a runny nose. I'm not worried that it's Coronavirus, but it made me wonder how I got it - does this mean I failed at social distancing or do we harbor colds for weeks in our bodies before showing symptoms? [more inside]
posted by Toddles at 7:18 AM PST - 19 comments

Telehealth Ontario

I am having some pretty severe anxiety at the moment. Is there a doctor in Toronto I can call and get a prescription for some short-term/emergency anti-anxiety medication? [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 7:11 AM PST - 8 comments

Covid-19, anxiety, parents

I've been trying to isolate myself as much as possible for more than a week now, with the intention of visiting my parents (both over 65, one with a health condition that creates additional risk). However, I live in a multi-resident building and any time I walk out my front door, I am in a shared space. [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 7:11 AM PST - 14 comments

I need a checkbook app

I need a straightforward checkbook app: a register that makes reconciling the account straightforward and that can handle recurring transactions. That's really it. [more inside]
posted by Orlop at 7:04 AM PST - 10 comments

How do I stop waking up after about every sleep cycle?

Lately I've been waking up about every hour-and-a-half to two hours. I can go back to sleep (usually) but then I'm up again another 90-120 minutes later. I figure it's after I hit the first REM cycle or so because I generally wake up after dreaming. The dreams are not bad dreams, and there's nothing in them that would jar me awake. Sleep habits haven't changed. What's going on? [more inside]
posted by schroedinger at 6:45 AM PST - 16 comments

Can't connect to internet via ASUS AC3200 router

I got a new router, an ASUS AC3200 Tri-Band Gigabit WiFi Router, for a better signal. My android phone and windows 7 work laptop connect just fine and can get to the internet. My windows 7 home PC, however, can only connect after taking 30 seconds or more and then shows connected but no internet. [more inside]
posted by Pig Tail Orchestra at 6:26 AM PST - 5 comments

So now they say we should wear masks..

It seems that we should be wearing masks. I don't have any, and I don't sew. Where can I get some? [more inside]
posted by AMyNameIs at 5:47 AM PST - 19 comments

Windows timestamp text filename

I'm looking for a way to do date and time stamps in windows (especially for renaming filenames, but anywhere else too). I was going to try autohotkey but the site gives a warning, IDK how real that warning is but more wary than usual due to general weirdness. [more inside]
posted by unearthed at 1:21 AM PST - 5 comments