These questions have answers marked "best" by the asker.

November 13

Preparatory monkeys

I have convinced myself that a prototype model of a sculpture is called a macaque. Is that right? What's the word I'm thinking of? [more inside]
posted by popcassady to Media & Arts at 4:05 AM - 4 answers

November 12

Life insurance...for war zones?

I don’t know anything about life insurance, and I know you’re not my insurance agent, but I have no idea where to start. [more inside]
posted by gucci mane to Health & Fitness at 4:46 PM - 11 answers

What should I do this week at night in Chicago?

I'm in Chicago at work for the first time ever, and I'm kind of bummed it's so cold and dark and that lots of the usual night tours and such are closed for the winter (because it's so cold and dark). Anything open after 5 you would recommend? [more inside]
posted by clarinet to Travel & Transportation at 3:08 PM - 8 answers

Removing snow from the top of a minivan?

I have spent 20+years cursing people who drive with snow flying off their cars. Now I am one of *those* people because I have a minivan and am too short to actually get all the snow off (and honestly in too much of a rush to do a great job on the areas I can reach). What are my options? [more inside]
posted by dotparker to Home & Garden at 2:47 PM - 21 answers

How to decide whether to go to Lebanon for NYE

I've made plans (including flights) to go to Beirut and Byblos for a week in Dec/Jan. How do I decide whether or not to go? I am not looking for an answer on whether or not to go. I'm looking for advice on how to make that call, and possibly whether to go to Israel (or Saudi Arabia?) instead. [more inside]
posted by Capri to Travel & Transportation at 10:18 AM - 7 answers

I'm awkward and hate conflict

I have decided to discontinue seeing my therapist, for a couple of reasons. I'm having trouble figuring out exactly how to phrase this to him in a graceful way. Can anyone help me with a script? [more inside]
posted by thereemix to Health & Fitness at 9:41 AM - 7 answers

Where to go on a road trip this week?

Can someone recommend me a general target destination for a road trip this week, starting from San Francisco and going... probably east? Hopefully places that aren't *too* icy/snowy? [more inside]
posted by picklenickle to Travel & Transportation at 8:21 AM - 8 answers

How to soothe my ex's anxious cats until they can move in with him?

My husband and I are getting divorced. He's getting the cats in the divorce. He has effectively moved in with his new girlfriend (temporarily, until we can sublet our apartment and he can afford his own) whose living situation precludes him taking his cats with him, leaving me as the sole caretaker of two very upset cats who don't understand why their favorite human isn't around and are acting out accordingly. How do I survive this and maybe help these poor babies be a little happier? [more inside]
posted by bridgebury to Pets & Animals at 7:59 AM - 10 answers

November 11

Help me easily track my water intake

I need something that will stick on the side of my refrigerator, and allow me to track the number of glasses of water I drink. What is that thing? [more inside]
posted by BlahLaLa to Grab Bag at 3:41 PM - 11 answers

Funky commercial investment for personal use

There is a commercial building in my neighborhood for sale and I'm interested in purchasing for personal use (i.e. art studio), but need advice on how to go about looking into it. Details below. [more inside]
posted by hillabeans to Work & Money at 12:59 PM - 8 answers

How to find a part-time nanny/childcare/general help in San Francisco?

My San Francisco-based friend has a 4 m/o daughter, and has had a very very tough time with pregnancy, birth, and the first few months of her baby's life. She needs help, but she's too overwhelmed to figure out where to start. Do any of you SFers have tips or resources for finding a nanny or other childcare help? [more inside]
posted by alleycat01 to Home & Garden at 9:24 AM - 11 answers

Portuguese-language documentaries about community climate response

I'm looking for Portuguese-language documentary films that show how a Portuguese-speaking community has come together in response to a climate event. [more inside]
posted by sleevener to Media & Arts at 8:33 AM - 3 answers

Checklist for viewing a prospective house?

We might be moving and thus looking for a new house. But it's been close to 2 decades since we've been house hunting and we're feeling kinda lost/overwhelmed with what to check for when viewing a prospective house. Anyone got a link a good checklist to use as a starting point? [more inside]
posted by Brandon Blatcher to Home & Garden at 7:20 AM - 10 answers

The US immigration border crisis - where to donate?

In order not to feel so helpless, I want to donate to organizations that are mitigating ICE policy at the border: detention, forced separation, and deaths. [more inside]
posted by honey badger to Law & Government at 6:49 AM - 4 answers

Should I move forward with getting engaged?

I'll make this intro short. I've been dating my girlfriend for the past 2.5 years, and she talked with me yesterday about how she wanted to get engaged. I want to as well. The problem is that I don't feel financially secure enough in my career growth. The reason this is an issue is because gf's parents are strict Indian people who have told me that they want me to be in a certain place before accepting me and moving forward.
posted by ggp88 to Human Relations at 6:07 AM - 43 answers

D&D etiquette, or how can we become a better team?

We've been playing D&D for a few months now - all us players are beginners, (not the DM, he's experienced). I'd like to know about ways to ensure that we have the best group dynamics possible. How to avoid players getting too frustrated with one another. Slight complication, the DM is on Skype, but all the players are in the same room. [more inside]
posted by Zumbador to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation at 5:46 AM - 7 answers

Teen books where friends are imperfect

My 11-year-old son is struggling with new friendships at a new school. He is very loyal to his friends, who can be difficult and get in trouble, and that can lead him into trouble. I would like to find teen fiction books that address these kinds of situations -- for example, where the kids have friends, and those friends are imperfect and do bad things, and kids have to decide how they will respond. I'd also be interested in teen fiction that addresses issues of troublemaking, independence or loyalty more generally. He is a fairly mature reader for his age, so books aimed at 10-14 year olds might fit the bill.
posted by beniamino to Writing & Language at 2:59 AM - 12 answers

November 10

Help Identify (indie?) Card Game Like Set + Memory

This year at XOXO Fest I played a card game that had elements similar to Set and a basic memory game. You placed square cards upside down and then took turns either viewing, flipping, or sliding cards IIRC. The object was to make a set of cards in a row. [more inside]
posted by oneirodynia to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation at 7:23 PM - 3 answers

What's a non-Apple replacement for an iPod Nano?

It finally happened: my iPod Nano 7 bit the dust. I bought the Nano 7 as a replacement for a previous Nano 5, even though the 7 was the obviously inferior model, lacking the scroll wheel. I see that the Nano is no longer manufactured in any model, leaving only the iPod Touch, which has all the drawbacks of the 7 and is also way too huge. It's clear that Apple no longer makes products I want to buy, so where do I go from here? [more inside]
posted by Faint of Butt to Technology at 12:44 PM - 15 answers

Gaining Perspective on Unrequited Something or Other

When we were 21 years old, a friend had a crush on me and I rejected him. 12 years have passed, and we have kept in touch despite living thousands of miles apart. We've traveled together, were roommates for a time, etc. Neither of us has made a move since that one rejection, and I doubt he is interested anymore. But I am. I miss him a ton and fantasize about us being together. And then I get sad. Should I dismiss these fantasies or should I make a move? [more inside]
posted by nowadays to Human Relations at 12:08 PM - 10 answers

Low-acid, non-irritating, easy-to-make, non-dairy recipes & snack ideas?

Mr. Pup often gets canker sores. Eating anything acidic or spicy hurts / delays healing, so he eats bland food (basically rice and bread) when he’s on the mend. He ends up losing weight because the food is so boring, and he’s trying to gain weight. What low- or no-acid recipes and snack ideas can you share to keep Mr. Pup eating while he heals? [more inside]
posted by saltypup to Food & Drink at 12:28 AM - 20 answers

November 9

How to set wholesale price to independent gift shops?

I want to sell items to independent gift shops, not a Spencers or Hallmark store. Looking for guidance on how to set wholesale price based on what I think the retail price would be. [more inside]
posted by Sophont to Shopping at 10:41 PM - 3 answers

Hairstylists of Metafilter, lend me your shears!

My new shag haircut looks dull and blocky. Could it be an execution error by a stylist using the wrong tools? If so, what's the best way to get it fixed (if it's even fixable)? [more inside]
posted by victoriab to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion at 8:05 PM - 8 answers

Is “Guts” the book too old for my kid & other anxiety book recommendatio

My 4 yo saw the book Guts today at target and fixated on it; I want to give him language to talk about his anxiety but I don’t want to feed / seed it either. Is the book too old for him? And what other books would you recommend for parenting an anxious kid? [more inside]
posted by St. Peepsburg to Human Relations at 3:44 PM - 10 answers

Working harder but losing lean mass...who do I talk to?

TLDR; my DEXA scan shows a lean mass decrease of approximately 3kg, and a fat increase of about the same, in spite of increasing my strength work outs. Why is this happening and what sort of professional do I talk to figure out how to reverse it? [more inside]
posted by eloeth-starr to Health & Fitness at 12:14 PM - 9 answers

Which music file is "fresher," from my computer or external hard drive?

Need advice on hard drives w/ music files. Seven years ago I ripped a bunch of CDs and also backed up the collection to a Passport hard drive (a little Western Digital black box). I started playing the files on the computer, a Dell laptop, and have ever since. Now, I want to throw all the same music onto a different computer. Should I use the files as they are from the old computer, where I've been playing them? Or would they be "fresher" coming from the Passport hard drive that's just sat safely for seven years? [more inside]
posted by noelpratt2nd to Computers & Internet at 10:48 AM - 10 answers

Shipping car across state lines to unreliable family member (not my idea

A member of my family is shipping a car across state lines to their daughter who is not reliable. In order to ship the car to Daughter State Y, the car has to be registered and have plates in Home State X. Last time my family member shipped a car to this daughter (yes, second time), daughter did not register the car or get plates in Daughter State Y. All of the tickets and toll bills etc. ended up eventually routed to my family member who paid them. [more inside]
posted by ClaudiaCenter to Travel & Transportation at 10:26 AM - 13 answers

How to use an RCD socket?

My rented garage has this RCD power socket installed (or at least one that looks identical). It's acting like it's permanently tripped. Am I just using it wrong? [more inside]
posted by metaBugs to Home & Garden at 9:26 AM - 6 answers

bulk powdered broth at Berkeley Bowl

When I lived in the Bay area I used to buy really great, fairly cheap ($7/lb) vegetarian stock powder (sometimes chicken flavored, sometimes "vegetable" flavored, both were good) in bulk at Berkeley Bowl. I moved away and can't find anything that's as good & as cheap, so I'd like to order it in bulk online. Does anyone know what brand it is? I don't think it's Frontier, which seems to be the most common bulk bin supplier.
posted by needs more cowbell to Food & Drink at 7:32 AM - 11 answers

November 8

Do I cancel this trip?

I was going to visit someone romantically. Then I find out this person is dating our mutual friend when I thought otherwise. Do I cancel the trip? [more inside]
posted by pando11 to Human Relations at 12:08 PM - 25 answers

A 2019 Guide to Laptops

I found a great deal on a laptop (I think!) but I'm woefully out of the game on what to be looking for. I want to use it for school, programming, some games. I mostly want it to last! [more inside]
posted by OnTheLastCastle to Technology at 10:24 AM - 4 answers

National Geographic was wrong!!

I'm still considering the potato, and this is a question about Acadian recipes, and salt pork, and potatoes. The internet has a trillion recipes, but some clarification would be helpful. [more inside]
posted by Melismata to Food & Drink at 9:32 AM - 5 answers

Financial Aid and Nontraditional Students

My partner is in college for the first time, balancing school with work. He's not getting any financial aid outside of loans-- is there anything we should be doing differently, or is that just the norm? [more inside]
posted by geegollygosh to Education at 7:53 AM - 18 answers

Arabic calligraphy, Marvel edition

It's another Arabic calligraphy question, this time supervillain-themed. Can anyone read what it says on this t-shirt, around the Hydra skulltopus? [more inside]
posted by daisyk to Writing & Language at 4:52 AM - 4 answers

November 7

iPhone and iPad neophyte. I now own both. Need online tutorial.

Stroke of luck, a friend re-signed up for new cable, new phone service, new iPhone. Sign-up bonus: brand new iPad. He sold it to me for $100. Another friend just got latest iPhone, sold me his iPhone 7 Plus for $150. So I've a brand new iPad, a sweet (if a bit dated) iPhone. I've used cheapo android phones and don't even know what all they can do -- Apple a whole nother game. Seeking instructional site, series of videos, where I can go from knowing nothing to utilizing these amazing pieces of gear. Any ideas? [more inside]
posted by dancestoblue to Computers & Internet at 10:24 PM - 11 answers

Autistic anxiety on new hobby projects

I'm after some rational solutions to reduce a newly-recognised but long-term trigger for anxiety. [more inside]
posted by b33j to Grab Bag at 8:05 PM - 18 answers

Definite article question

I have a question about definite article use--and its non-use. [more inside]
posted by zardoz to Writing & Language at 5:36 PM - 4 answers

Excel crossword puzzle that triggers conditional formatting when won?

I’m making a custom crossword for which the player will input their guesses into Excel. My plan is to have two sheets in this document: a hidden puzzle with all the correct letters in it (the player is on the honor system), and a visible sheet with the proper boxes blacked-out and the rest empty. (Obviously each cell has to correspond exactly between them.) I know just enough about Excel to know that there’s gotta be a way to set up a visible indicator when the puzzle is completed successfully, but… [more inside]
posted by CheesesOfBrazil to Computers & Internet at 2:47 PM - 5 answers

Who is this artist?

My mother has three prints that she acquired knowing only that they were "a Chinese artist," and although I can make out part of the title of the prints, I haven't had any luck figuring out the name of the artist. Can anyone read either the title of the prints or the artist? Bonus points for the seal! [more inside]
posted by wakannai to Media & Arts at 12:49 PM - 2 answers

Gift for 9 year old cat lover

My daughter's friend is turning nine. According to her mom, she likes "anything cat. Toys, books, clothes, you name it." This somehow does not help narrow it down at all! Please help! [more inside]
posted by Omnomnom to Shopping at 12:16 PM - 26 answers