Open Forum

Where you can't be off topic because there IS no topic.

The floor is yours.

Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. OzarkHillbilly says:

    A construction worker who attempted to warn managers about building dangers and was seriously injured in last month’s deadly Hard Rock Hotel collapse in New Orleans, will be deported on Monday, his lawyers said this week.

    Delmer Joel Ramírez Palma, a Honduran citizen, was working inside the 18-storey building when it dramatically crumbled on to a busy downtown intersection on 12 October, killing three and injuring dozens. He survived a fall from the ninth floor to the sixth by swinging from a rope.

    Ramírez Palma was hospitalized with serious injuries, including head trauma and internal inflammation, and still requires surgery for an acute eye injury, according to his wife and two lawyers working on separate immigration and civil injury cases.

    Immediately after the accident, he was interviewed by a Spanish-language media outlet. Two days later, he was arrested by immigration authorities while fishing with his family in a national wildlife refuge.
    “The timing is highly suspicious … and the circumstances of the arrest are extraordinarily suspicious,” said Yanik, noting she had no direct evidence tying his arrest to his employer.

    Tania Bueso, Ramírez Palma’s wife, said the encounter with a US Fish and Wildlife Service ranger that led to her husband’s arrest was unusual, but can’t be certain it was targeted. She claims the officer “seemed to actually be looking for him” as he was resting in the shade. The ranger asked for a valid fishing license, which he had, and then for a driver’s license, which he did not.

    The family fishes regularly. Bueso said they had been through license checks before, but have never been asked for personal identification before the October encounter.
    Daryl Gray, who is representing Ramírez Palma and four other Hard Rock workers in a civil suit against building developers, said he had spoken to “numerous” undocumented workers too afraid to talk about the accident.

    He called federal authorities’ treatment of Ramírez Palma “unfair at its core”.

    “And it is contrary to seeking justice,” he added. “One agency is investigating this tragic collapse and then another government agency is moving material witnesses out of the country.”

    I am shocked, shocked I tell you!

  2. Kit says:

    5:31 AM! It’s Saturday, Doug, don’t you ever sleep?

  3. OzarkHillbilly says:

    An Alabama jury on Friday convicted a white police officer of manslaughter in the fatal shooting of an unarmed black man in 2016.

    Jurors returned the verdict against the Montgomery police officer Aaron Cody Smith on the lesser charge for the shooting death of 58-year-old Gregory Gunn, according to reports from news outlets. Prosecutors had charged Smith with murder.

    Smith shot and killed Gunn after he fled during a pat-down. The officer had stopped Gunn for a random stop-and-frisk as Gunn was walking home around 3am.

    Smith had a Bible in front of him at the defense table as jurors walked into the courtroom, and Gunn’s relatives stood as the verdict was read. Some in the courtroom cried.

    A deputy led Smith out of the courtroom afterward, and Smith resigned from the Montgomery police department. He had been on paid leave since the killing.
    The jury, which was mostly white, deliberated for two hours before returning the verdict.
    The trial was moved from mostly black Montgomery to the rural, south-east Alabama town of Ozark, about 85 miles (135 kilometers) away, at the request of the defense because of publicity in the capital city.

    Franklin Gunn thanked jurors for the verdict.

    “They brought this case to a very conservative county expecting a different outcome, but I believe we have seen the best of Alabama today,” he said.

    Maybe there is hope for us after all

  4. @Kit:

    The Open Forum post is a scheduled post that gets published at basically the same time every two days. We set them up days in advance.

    But to answer your question, my sleep habits are weird. I was up at 4:00 a.m. today. Although that was probably because I fell asleep early last night.

  5. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Republican committee bought Trump Jr book Triggered in bulk

    Another day ending in Y. I have to admit to wondering why somebody considered this newsworthy. $95,000 is a misplaced decimal point in RNC spending.

  6. @OzarkHillbilly:

    This is the same scam that helped Newt Gingrich bring down former Speaker of the House Jim Wright in the early 90s.

  7. sam says:
  8. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Doug Mataconis: I am sure that Newt Gingrich will be on FOX this very AM to talk of his outrage over this scandalous use of RNC money to enrich the family trump.

  9. OzarkHillbilly says:

    But her emails!

    In the span of just over five hours, Haley sent at least five emails containing classified information apparently related to North Korea’s test launch on July 4, 2017, of an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM). The documents also suggest that Haley intentionally used her less-secure, unclassified email for these sensitive communications — on a matter of great importance to U.S. national security — because she had forgotten the password for her classified email system.

    I’m sure this will get front page treatment at the NYT and Hannity, Carlson, Ingraham, and Pirro will get their outrage on in every one of their shows for weeks and months, maybe even years.

  10. OzarkHillbilly says:

    A resentencing hearing on Friday for the former Penn State football coach Jerry Sandusky resulted in the same penalty he received after his 2012 conviction for sexually assaulting teenage boys: 30 to 60 years in prison, probably the rest of his life.

    Sandusky was granted the hearing because of a supreme court ruling that minimum sentencing requirements, such as those on which his original sentence was based, were unconstitutional.

    Sporting a faded orange prison jumpsuit, Sandusky smiled broadly to spectators including his wife Dottie as he entered the courtroom at the Centre county court of common pleas in Bellefonte, where his trial was held seven years ago.

    His shoulders slumped when he heard Visiting Judge Maureen Skerda reimpose the 30-to-60-year sentence.

    “You mean I’m not getting probation and released immediately? What a bummer.”

  11. Jen says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: If she ever runs for president, that had d@mn well better sink her campaign. After all, there’s precedent.

  12. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Jen: IOKIYAR.

  13. Sleeping Dog says:


    In your dreams 🙂 I know you’re probably still getting through your first cup of joe, but you’re forgetting it is only a scandal when a Dem does it.

  14. Teve says:

    Sen. Marsha Blackburn

    Vindictive Vindman is the “whistleblower’s” handler.

    8:53 AM · Nov 22, 2019·Twitter for iPhone

  15. Teve says:

    I seem to remember there was somebody on this site and who argued that it was different when Hillary did it because reasons.

  16. de stijl says:


    Does Blackburn have any evidence? No.

    I love that nowadays US Senators now just shitpost on Twitter. Well, some of them anyway [knowing wink].

    Psst – they learned it from their President.

  17. mattbernius says:

    I give you my most frustrating read of the week wherein Rich Lowery admits the Trump doesn’t respect the Constitution, but he’s still better than any Democrat.

    For extra points he also doesn’t think Steven Miller is a White Nationalist either. Gotta love the intellectual pro-Trumpers.

  18. Kurtz says:

    From the ten takeaways from A Warning at The Wrap

    1. During the president’s briefings, aides were told to reduce information down to PowerPoints with a single bullet point

    Early in Trump’s presidency, the author said that Oval Office briefers were first told not to bring “lengthy documents” or “summaries” and, if they had to bring paper to their meeting with Trump, to use PowerPoint slides. But that soon proved to be too much information for the president, who “couldn’t digest too many slides.” Briefers were then told to keep things to a maximum of three bullet points, even for complicated issues, like “military readiness or the federal budget.” And when the president still struggled to comprehend the three bullet points, briefers were advised to keep their meetings with Trump down to just a single bullet point.

    “Come in with one main point and repeat it — over and over again, even if the president inevitably goes off on tangents — until he gets it. Just keep steering the subject back to it. ONE point,” the author wrote of the advice West Wing aides gave briefers. “Because you cannot focus the commander in chief’s attention on more than one goddamned thing over the course of a meeting, okay?”

    For those who ignored this advice and came in prepared to have “robust policy discussions on momentous national topics,” the official wrote, “they invariably paid the price.”

    “‘What the f— is this?’ the president would shout, looking at a document one of them handed him. ‘These are just words. A bunch of words. It doesn’t mean anything.’ Sometimes he would throw the papers back on the table. He definitely wouldn’t read them,” the official recalled.

    “These are just words. A bunch of words. It doesn’t mean anything.”

    Great job, red states. Idiots.

  19. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @mattbernius: Thanx but no thanx. I have too much self respect to ever intentionally read Star Bursts Lowery.

  20. Teve says:

    @Kurtz: he’s as smart as his supporters.

  21. Kurtz says:


    Lowery also just released a book called The Case for Nationalism because apparently nationalism never caused any problems in the past.

  22. de stijl says:

    For @Jax:

    This is the same space as The Jayhawks and Golden Smog. Not straight up country, but more alt country / Americana.

    My recommendation is Joe Henry. Specifically, I love Short Man’s Room. But his whole career is really great.

    Start out with Short Man’s Room. Really, any song, but my faves are One Shoe On, Last Man Out, The Diving Bell, Good Fortune. Really, really great songs.

    The Jayhawks are the the backing band on this album.

    This is melancholy music. For me, it fits the season. Short days; the sun low in the sky. Glorious autumn has passed. We must endure winter now.

    Queue it up one day during dinner prep. If you like it – that’s fantastic. If you don’t, you now know Joe Henry ain’t your scene.


    Weird fun fact: Joe Henry is Madonna’s BIL. He married her sister decades ago.

  23. Kit says:


    And when the president still struggled to comprehend the three bullet points, briefers were advised to keep their meetings with Trump down to just a single bullet point.

    Maybe they should just use emojis. No more than three, of course.

  24. Kit says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    I was up at 4:00 a.m. today.

    Well in that case, what took you so long to get the Open Forum post up? 🙂

  25. de stijl says:

    I was listening to Joe Henry’s Good Fortune to inform my previous comment to @Jax, and YouTube’s algorithim decided I might also like Dwight Yoakam (highly approve), but hilariously also Bauhaus’s Bela Legosi’s Dead.

    I would never ever have associated Joe Henry with Bauhaus.

    But eff those guys, they’re spot flipping on. I love, love, love Bela Legosi’s Dead.

    That’s spooky.

    [listening to it now]

  26. Teve says:

    From Kurtz’s link:

    4. Trump wanted to label migrants as “enemy combatants” so that the administration “had an excuse to keep them out of the country”

    “Almost anything, any issue, and problem can be tied back to immigration in [Trump’s] mind. At one point, Trump warmed to a new idea for solving what he viewed as the biggest crisis in American history: to label migrants as ‘enemy combatants.’ Keep in mind this is the same designation given to hardcore terrorist suspects,” the official wrote.

    “If we said these illegals were a national security threat, Trump reasoned, then the administration had an excuse to keep all of them out of the country,” the author continued. “It was unclear if someone had planted this in his head or whether he had come up with it on his own, but either way, advisors were mortified.”

  27. MarkedMan says:

    @Kit: A whole lotta eggplants….

  28. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Astronomers have been racing to understand the impact of future satellite launches since May when Elon Musk’s SpaceX sent up the first 60 of what is expected to become a 12,000-strong internet satellite constellation.

    When I heard of Musk’s project my first thought was, “This can not be good.” Turns out I was right: ‘Not cool’: telescope faces interference from space-bound satellites

    A flagship observatory that will map the heavens in spectacular detail and search the skies for asteroids on a collision course with Earth faces serious disruption from a new wave of satellites bound for space, the Guardian has learned.

    Astronomers on the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope, a state-of-the-art observatory due to open in Chile next year, have discovered that its views of the night sky will be marred by thousands of highly reflective communications satellites being launched by SpaceX, Amazon and other firms.

    Researchers on the LSST ran simulations to assess how the telescope would be affected by proposed launches over a decade of planned observations. They found that in some scenarios, almost every image the telescope takes will be spoiled by at least one bright streak produced by satellites passing overhead.

    The scientists modelled the impact of companies launching 50,000 internet satellites into low Earth orbits over the next decade, in line with stated aims. The greatest disruption was to twilight observations, which are crucial for some areas of astronomy, and useful for spotting Earth-bound asteroids coming from the direction of the sun.

    “Astronomical twilight is really, really dark, but about 90% of all our exposures with LSST will have a bright saturated trail across them,” said Tony Tyson, a professor of physics at the University of California, Davis, and chief scientist on the LSST. “At midnight in the summer, about 25% will have a trail, according to our simulation. That’s a huge hit on LSST observing.”
    Tyson’s calculations suggest the LSST will be more seriously affected than any other ground-based telescope. It is particularly vulnerable because it observes the entire sky multiple times each week. On a single night, it will take 1,000 exposures, each covering a square as wide as 40 moons in the sky. In all, the astronomers will make 30tn observations of 40bn objects. Construction and operation costs for the decade stand at $1.3bn.

    “It’s designed to scan the sky as rapidly and as deeply as physically possible and that’s exactly the prescription for running into these things,” Tyson said. To the 12,000 satellites already planned, SpaceX may add a further 30,000. Other companies, such as Amazon, OneWeb and Samsung, are interested in launching their own constellations.

    A months-long effort to remove the streaks by processing the images has so far failed. And while it is possible to reschedule the telescope’s observations to dodge small numbers of satellites, it cannot avoid 50,000. “It turns into a wild goose chase. It turns out to be even worse than not doing anything because you end up losing telescope time in a major way,” Tyson said.

  29. @Kit:

    It’s set up to auto post at 5am Eastern every other day.

    At five I am either reading the news or writing a post 🙂

  30. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Frank Sowa

    BREAKING – JUST IN … TRUMP THIS MORNING SAID HE WANTS THE USA OUT OF THE NATO ALLIANCE. He asked Pompeo & Esper to have State & PENTAGON to create wording for an EXIT Clause that he intends to push through at NATO HQ!

  31. de stijl says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    At 5AM, if you are voluntarily awake, ignore us. Take a half hour and enjoy the new day. Do coffee, tea, juice, smoothie whatever. Chill out and do not stress.

    We can wait.

  32. de stijl says:



    “The horror. The horror.”

    We are in the heart of darkness, or very adjacent.

  33. Kurtz says:

    @de stijl:

    Marlow never figured out that i took all the rivets.

  34. Kathy says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    I have an odd sleep pattern. On weekdays I go to sleep between 10:30 and 11:00, and I wake up, very reluctantly, when the alarm goes off at 5:50. I then snooze it two or three times, falling back asleep instantly each time.

    On weekends, I go to bed around the same time, but I tend to wake up at 4:30 or 5:00, and can’t for the life of me go back to sleep. It’s like my brain is subconsciously saying “Day off! get UP!! We won’t waste a precious day off sleeping!”

  35. sam says:


    Yeah, well, Rich Lowery:

    I’m sure I’m not the only male in America who, when Palin dropped her first wink, sat up a little straighter on the couch and said, “Hey, I think she just winked at me.” And her smile. By the end, when she clearly knew she was doing well, it was so sparkling it was almost mesmerizing. It sent little starbursts through the screen and ricocheting around the living rooms of America. This is a quality that can’t be learned; it’s either something you have or you don’t, and man, she’s got it.

    From someplace in National Review back in the day.

  36. Mister Bluster says:

    Tesla’s windows break but Timex keeps on ticking…maybe…

    If that doesn’t convince you, this will.

    (Trigger warning! Mimes…)

  37. @de stijl:

    Well the coffee is generally already brewing when I wake up and at the moment at least the weather is not exactly ideal for sitting outside unless I went to freeze off one body part or another.

  38. de stijl says:


    We are all savages.

  39. de stijl says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    Chill and rest for a bit. Put on a jacket and embrace the morning. We only get a finite set.

    Your job should not be your first thought at 5AM. Screw that noise.

    Just be you for a bit.

  40. gVOR09 says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Lock her up. (Somebody had to say it.)

  41. de stijl says:

    @de stijl:

    In a very real way youtube associating Dwight Yoakam, Bauhaus, and Joe Henry makes a lot of sense.

    We are in the post autumnal existence.
    Bare trees fractally spiking a pale sky. A brown and gray world. Super bad teen- age poetry.

    Melancholia is the antidote.

    I once shared a melancholy thought with someone and he mistook it for sadness or disatisfaction, and was concerned for my well being. Good on him, but it meant I communicated my head space poorly. I enjoyed what I was feeling. It was vital and precious.

    Melancholy is a positive thing. It is the acknowledgement of loss. Well, not just that. I have to think on that more.

  42. JohnSF says:

    I present to you the greatest sports interview of all time!

    Ruby player Joe Marler, Harlequins and England loosehead prop-forward on the significant horse

  43. Kurtz says:


    It’s such a stupid notion that a woman in public life should be physically attractive. Even then, she was never attractive to me. Male Republicans acted like she was the new Marilyn Monroe.

    As someone pointed out above, if Lowery is an intellectual highlight of your movement, there is a serious lack of brainpower at the top.

    Then again, there are many people that think Ayn Rand was a serious philosopher. I’ll quote one of the characters in The Wire, “Americans are by and large a stupid people.”

  44. de stijl says:

    @de stijl:

    Throw in some Joy Division, though, Youtube. Totally would have completed the set. Y’all missed the finisher.

    (I am so going to listen to Joy Division today. This totally feels like a Joy Division day.)

  45. gVOR08 says:

    @mattbernius: I read that last night because I like Illing’s interviews and I was curious how he’d handle Lowry. I would say Illing was quite respectful while not hiding that Lowry’s views are nonsense on stilts.

    I regard conservatism as a huge game of make believe. Let’s pretend giving money to rich people is good for the economy. Let’s pretend W is somehow presidential. Let’s pretend we’re post-racial. Let’s pretend Ukraine has “the server”. In Lowry’s case it’s let’s pretend nationalism is something other than what it obviously is so he can sell his book without the rest of us thinking he’s a racist asshat.

  46. Kathy says:


    I’ve had bosses who don’t listen because they are too busy, but not because they are too dim or incapable of assimilating new information.

    It’s frustrating, especially when you have something important that requires the boss’ attention and their decision.

    One time I was handed the price criterion for a big project. I set the prices as per instructions, and then ran the numbers against the requirement. By my estimate, we were leaving a few hundred thousand dollars on the table. Worse, about half of the fruits and vegetables were being listed at cost or with a ridiculously tiny markup.

    The boss was very busy, but this was far more urgent than the other big project he was concentrating on. he had two weeks for that one, I had a few hours to send the price listing to the client. But he still wouldn’t listen.

    So I said. “Ok. I’ll send the listing as is, and you can look for a new job tomorrow.” That got his attention and we fixed the problem in five minutes.

  47. gVOR08 says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Good God. Putin must be realizing his toady doesn’t have much time left.

  48. de stijl says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    Why Open Forum auto-post at 5AM?

    Walk me through why you think that is the appropriate time.

  49. Jax says:

    @de stijl: The Weather Channel had 70-80’s day on their background music yesterday. I am literally incapable of listening to “Video Killed the Radio Star” without it getting stuck in my head for days, so I communicated my earworm on Facebook and got text messages and comments all day long cussing me out for sharing the earworm. 😉

    The Youtube algorithm gets better the more you use it!

  50. grumpy realist says:

    @de stijl: Durer’s Melancholia I

    Thomas Moore has a chapter on melancholy in his book “The Care of the Soul”. I like his identification of it with the step of calcination in alchemy–a way of burning out all the superfluous and reduction to a pure element.

  51. de stijl says:


    The Buggles. That is an earworm.

    Curse you for infecting me!

  52. de stijl says:

    @grumpy realist:

    Thank you!

    That was so tremendous!

    I love that era of art where all of the stuff in the margins had cultural meaning and commented on the foreground figure.

  53. gVOR08 says:

    Free speech absolutism sometimes comes up in these threads. Elizabeth Nelson at LGM has an excellent interview with law professor Gregory Margarian on the subject. Starts with the inability of a state university to deal with a racist, and I assume tenured, asshat, but then broadens to First Amendment absolutism.

    Yes, I absolutely think First Amendment law has shifted from protecting dissenters and socially marginal speakers to protecting powerful and wealthy speakers.

    When people talk about “free speech absolutism,” what they really mean is free speech formalism: If you can state a First Amendment claim against the government, you should win.

    I reject First Amendment formalism. I care instead about a substantive view of the First Amendment. The law should foster and promote social conditions that enable people to speak, to receive information, and to consider and debate ideas, in order to learn, to contribute to democracy, and to grow and thrive as human beings. We should presumptively mistrust government interference with speech, because the government has a lot of power and an intense self-interest. But sometimes the government can help make speech more free, especially when other powerful institutions, like wealthy business corporations, are trying to suppress speech. That’s why, for example, the First Amendment shouldn’t bar the government from making ISPs operate under Net Neutrality.

    I think conservatives’ pious complaints about their victimization at the hands of the PC thought police are complete and abject bullshit. Conservatives almost never suffer coerced speech suppression; rather, conservatives always have been, are today, and probably always will be the dominant speech suppressors. Here’s a simple test for judging any claim of speech suppression: Who has power, and how is power being used to suppress speech? When conservatives claim that they’re afraid to speak on campuses because of a climate of PC repression, where’s the exercise of power? There isn’t any. They’re just afraid to speak because they don’t believe they should have to bear and answer criticism.

  54. de stijl says:


    I put it out, but you don’t have to like Joe Henry.

    You seemed to like The Jayhawks and Golden Smog.

    He shares that space. Sort of.

    If you don’t like, that’s cool too. If you do like, that is also cool.

  55. Kurtz says:


    This is what Ben Shapiro blamed his terrible interview in England on. He accused a well known English conservative of being part of the liberal media and stormed out.

    Along with Victor Davis Hanson, Shapiro and Lowry tend to criticize the liberal media incessantly while showing little intellectual responsibility in their own media careers.

  56. Jax says:

    @de stijl: I do like him! He’s come up a couple times as “suggested for you” in my algorithm. 😉

  57. de stijl says:

    Melancholy is definitionally linked to sadness. That misses the point. It is the facile take.

    I experience it as a mostly positive, helpful, healing feeling.

    My meaning acknowledges that sadness and the acknowledgement that we all face that. Bittersweet acknowledgement of loss.

    I might be misguided. Trying to cram a meaning into a word everyone else sees diffetently..

  58. Jax says:

    If anybody has any “egg heavy” recipes to share, please send them my way. My chickens are going crazy and they’re producing 3-4 dozen a day, even with as many people as I have buying eggs, supply is far exceeding demand. So far I’ve made a gallon of pickled eggs and beets, pickled eggs with garlic and dill, pickled eggs with sausage and peppers, an angel food cake, angel food cake cookies, and egg noodles. NEED MORE IDEAS!!!!

  59. Kit says:


    Here’s a simple test for judging any claim of speech suppression: Who has power, and how is power being used to suppress speech?

    While not perfectly apropos, you did put me in mind of the following quotation:

    what power do you have; where did you get it; in whose interests do you exercise it; to whom are you accountable; and, how can we get rid of you? — Tony Benn

  60. Kathy says:


    Look up spaghetti carbonara, and egg drop soup. Though it’s about one to three eggs per dish.

  61. de stijl says:

    @de stijl:

    Burger? Put an egg on it! Runny yolk is super yum.

    Pork chop? Put a runny egg on it.

    Seriously, any protein. Just put a sunny side egg on that sucker. Poke the yolk and all that yummy goodness emerges.

    (This assumes you like runny yolks.)

    If so, on pizza. On pasta. In pasta – carbonara.

    Still not going to account for 3+ dozen a day.

    This will sound harsh, but you might have more layers than optimal, and may need to cull. And by cull, I mean harvest. Lesser souls might say “kill”, but they are missing the life giving nature of the process.

    When I was a wee lad we went to my Grandfather’s farm. I learned that chickens can actually run around for ten seconds or so after they’ve been beheaded. And it is freaky as shit. They have no connected brain – it just should not be true, but it is.

    That the hatchet makes a distinct noise when it goes through a chicken neck before it hits the stump.

    Also, plucking a dead chicken is frankly gross. You pull the feathers out and it makes a weird gross sound.

    If you have more eggs than you can accommodate, you need to think about culling. Sorry.

  62. de stijl says:


    The Jackson 5’s ABC123 is is the nuclear bomb of earworms.

  63. JohnSF says:

    (Runs and hides)

  64. de stijl says:


    You can’t make an omelette without breaking some eggs.

    Crappy action movies love this cliche.

    Rogue cop teams up with misunderstood gang leader.

    Egg breaking ensues.

    Roll credits.

  65. JohnMc says:

    @Jax: Fried chicken?

  66. grumpy realist says:

    @Jax: Start looking at some traditional European dessert recipes. Sachertorte takes 10-12 eggs/recipe. Look for recipes where the egg yolks get separated out into the main batter, then you whip the egg whites until stiff and fold in to provide the leavening.

    There’s also quiche, kookee (Persian omelette), quenelles, Japanese datemaki (get one of the rectangular pans if you want to do this correctly)….no one used to ever worry about eggs and cholesterol.

  67. Kathy says:

    @grumpy realist:

    Also Torta Caprese, or Capri chocolate cake. It uses almond flour, though. But it takes up six eggs.

  68. de stijl says:

    @grumpy realist:

    12 eggs per?

    Holy moly, that is a very rich torte. How many is it meant to serve?


    You could try to sell your layer hens.

  69. grumpy realist says:

    @Jax: Here’s a link to a YouTube video explaining how to make the pickled quasi-soft-boiled eggs for ramen. He goes into great detail.

    You also might want to take a look at Jas. Townsend & Sons–he’s the guy who does all his 18th century cooking using period equipment. At least one of his videos on YouTube was about preserving eggs–he did some experiments and discovered you can store them unrefrigerated under the correct storage medium for a ridiculously long time–I think it was up to 18 months.

  70. MarkedMan says:

    Salmonella in eggs is a common thing in the US. I don’t understand why anyone eats runny eggs.

  71. grumpy realist says:

    @de stijl: I think the standard recipe serves 16-18 people, but remember, it’s not so much the eggs but the sugar and the chocolate and the apricot filling and the robing in ganache. THEN you’re supposed to eat it with a huge mound of unsweetened whipped cream on the side. (For all the eggs you put in, it’s actually a rather dry cake.)

    Whenever I make one of these babies I freeze most of the slices and enjoy Sachertorte over the next several months. It freezes well.

    Oh, and don’t forget the coffee!

  72. Jax says:

    @de stijl: I already did cull anything that was gimpy, weak, or super mean to the other hens, and gave away about 25 of the older gals….I think it’s been the nice weather, we’ve had most of November at 50-60 degrees during the day, which is absolutely unheard of for this area. I try to maintain the same number of hens each year to stay steady with demand, they don’t usually lay like this!

    Ironically enough, I sell most of them at one of the local bars in town. They usually go through about 10 dozen a week. I guess the guys can say they’re “grocery shopping” if they can pick up a dozen eggs while they’re having a beer. 😉

    @grumpy realist: Thanks, I will look those recipes up!

  73. grumpy realist says:

    @de stijl: There’s also a traditional Japanese New Year’s Day dish which involves nothing but egg, sugar, and dashi, but a lot of time and effort. (You hard-boil the eggs, separate out the whites from the yolks, pass each of them through a very fine mesh, add sugar and a little bit of dashi, then recombine in layers in a wooden box which you then steam to solidify everything, then let cool before slicing across the layers.) I seem to remember we started with at least 12 eggs, maybe 24.

    ….actually, if I had to deal with a huge number of eggs, I’d get myself invited to a church potluck reception and show up with one of those huge platters of devilled eggs. Nom nom nom.

    The only other suggestion I have is to find a bunch of people on the keto diet–the eggs will immediately vanish.

  74. Kurtz says:

    Sorry to break up the wonderful culinary discussion.

    Here is Andrew C. McCarthy’s latest piece of horsehit. I actually had emojis for the curse, because i intended on a Trump joke. I didn’t realize they do not appear here; probably for the better.

    Bonus points if you can get through the whole thing with your eyes in the correct position. I stopped part of the way, because i was afraid for the health of my peepers.

  75. de stijl says:

    @grumpy realist:

    Austrians are super hard-core!

  76. de stijl says:

    @grumpy realist:

    Move to rural Minnesota or northern Wisconsin.

    Church pot-lucks every Sunday, and fish fry every Friday at every bar in town.

    You can get jello with fruit pieces suspended within the jello! Call me crazy, but it’s true!

    Lutherans kick jello butt!

    Lutheran pot-lucks are the best. If you crave starch, literally acres of casseroles.

    Aka “hot dish”

  77. grumpy realist says:

    @de stijl: Don’t they call it “a little lunch”? (swiped from “How to Speak Minnesotan”)

  78. Tyrell says:

    News you may have missed:

    “New Tesla truck’s windows don’t pass the smash test” (NY Post) But can it haul a load of gravel?

    Protestors confront disrupt Senator Warren speech at college (“Dutifully ignored by MSNBC and Washington Post”) Washington Examiner

    “Democrat Candidates Move To Center” (Slate) Returning to their
    southern roots?

    “Mouse Deer Found in Vietnam after Thirty Years” (Guardian)
    A deer the size of a small dog!

    “God has a plan” Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa credits faith (Sports Spectrum)
    See also Coach Saban’s inspiring talk. Coach for president!

    “Men can give birth” (Newsbusters) Really?

    “ Disney’s “Frozen 2” opened with an impressive $8.5 million at North American locations on Thursday night.” (Variety) Not bad considering it was a school night.

    “ Professor Claims to Have Discovered Insect-Like Life on Mars “ (Futurism) What else have they not told us?

  79. DrDaveT says:

    @Jax: A 9″ quiche uses 4 eggs, and doesn’t last long at all, at least around my family. It’s trivially easy to make, except for the crust — if you can buy pre-made commercial pie shells, the whole thing only takes a few minutes to prep and less than an hour to bake.

  80. DrDaveT says:


    I don’t understand why anyone eats runny eggs.

    If you have a sous vide cooking setup (or just the immersion heater half of one), it’s easy to pasteurize fresh eggs while leaving the yolks runny for culinary purposes.

  81. Jax says:

    @DrDaveT: What do you normally put in yours? I’ve only ever had quiche one time, I think it had spinach in it or something green.

  82. JohnSF says:

    @de stijl:
    Just listened to Joe Henry “Short Man’s Room”; yes, quite like that.
    Not an entire musical universe away; have you ever heard Mojave 3?
    Sort of intersection of English alt-rock (were former members of Slowdive) with sort-of Americanish folk.
    Mercy” is the best song Leonard Cohen never wrote 🙂

    Also, from longer ago: Richard and Linda Thompson, “Under the Calvary Cross”

    “Short days; the sun low in the sky”: tell me about it; current days here 8 1/2 hours, sun at maximum above the horizon 60 degrees. and still a month to Winter solstice.
    And it seems to have hardly stopped raining since September.

  83. Teve says:

    Dave Chang
    You are a fucking dumb ass
    Quote Tweet

    Tom Nichols
    · 2h
    Indian food is terrible and we pretend it isn’t.

  84. Mikey says:


    I don’t understand why anyone eats runny eggs.

    Because sometimes that’s the best way to eat them. And by sometimes I mean always.

    But you can buy pasteurized eggs, all the glorious runny-ness with none of the risk.

  85. Mikey says:

    @Teve: Hahahahaha…Dave Chang is awesome. If you haven’t been able to catch his show Ugly Delicious on Netflix, take some time to binge. It’s fantastic.

  86. de stijl says:


    A half hour ago I had a red curry over short grain rice on purpose.

    I did not have to pretend.

    I freaking loved it, and ate every bit of it.

    It’s as if I love Indian food.

  87. JohnSF says:

    @de stijl:
    Indian food is the true national cuisine of Britain.

    I usually cook up a curry (of varying degrees of Indian authenticity) at least once a fortnight.
    Chicken tikka and lamb dopiaza esp.

  88. Jax says:

    @Kurtz: I did not make it through with my eyes in the correct position, and I see Fox News has picked it up.

    This is why we can’t have nice things.

  89. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @de stijl: I happen to like the song, so that may make a difference, but I find the best way to address an earworm is to embrace it. I whistle it, sing it out loud (if I can), dance to it, imagine the video if I know it, everything I can do to engage with it. For some reason, the earworm goes away in a while. Maybe John Donne (???) was right and “freedom is found in excess.”

    It might not work for everybody, I don’t know; I (as opposed to others on this forum) am not everybody. It could be that the problem I had with earworms and other types of ADD/OCD-type mental things (have I ever told anybody here how annoying the constant flickering of fluorescent lights and buzzing of the ballast was when I was a child?) went away after I was treated for sleep apnea. The human mind is complex–and simple at the same time.

  90. JohnSF says:

    Hello Doug; a comment of mine with a couple of YouTube links in it appears to have been ate by the spam filters, any chance of releasing it?

    If not, basically it was to de stijll: check out Mojave3 and Richard and Linda Thompson, if you don’t know of them already (which you probably do) and if you think days are short where you are …

  91. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @de stijl: There’s a cookbook out in the world called Grandma Rose’s Cake Book (I think) by Rose Naftalin. She was the Rose of Rose’s Highway Inn near SeaTac Airport (IIRC). There’s not a single cake recipe that takes fewer than 8 eggs in the entire book. Eggs are what make the cake moist and dense but still having a tender crumb (that and melting the shortening into the batter instead of creaming it into the sugar according so someone I knew who worked at Pacific Deserts in Seattle when I worked in the produce business 😉 ).

  92. Teve says:

    Indian food is 10 lbs of awesome in a 5lb bag.

  93. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @de stijl: My favorite is jello chiffon with both cream cheese mixed into the jello and fruit suspended in it (but no nuts, I’m allergic to walnuts and pecans). I never learned how to make it, though.

  94. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @DrDaveT: I use baking mix and make “Impossible quiche.” It’s not quite as good, but I’ve never had anybody say “no, I’m not going to eat that; it’s sacrilege!”

  95. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Jax: Not Dr. DaveT, but I put and combination of the following sautéed vegetables–onions, peppers, mushrooms (canned work too), broccoli, cauliflower, celery, carrot–along with bacon, ham, or sausage (brown and serve work really well and are quick) and shredded cheese.

  96. MarkedMan says:

    @DrDaveT:I do have a sous vide setup and knew about that method for killing the bacteria. But, truth be told, I find the very idea of runny eggs nauseating. Basically I’m claiming superior hygiene over what amounts to a matter of taste.

  97. DrDaveT says:


    What do you normally put in [quiche]?

    There are an infinite number of wonderful quiches. Some favorites:
    1. Cooked diced ham or bacon or pancetta, sauteed onions, and grated gruyère (classic Lorraine)
    2. Cooked chorizo, sauteed onions, green chiles, and grated Monterey Jack
    3. Steamed broccoli florets, minced shallot, and grated cheddar or muenster or fontina (bacon optional)
    4. Sauteed asparagus (diced), diced ham, and your favorite blue cheese (mine’s Stilton)
    5. Kalamata olives, diced artichoke hearts, and feta
    6. Chopped cooked spinach or kale or chard, grated smoked edam, and grated parmesan

  98. Mister Bluster says:
  99. Gustopher says:

    I had to have my sweet and beautiful 15 year old cat put down today, after watching her decline with lymphoma for a while, and I have a few thoughts:

    1. People should be offered the dignity of having their loved ones bring them to the vet to have them euthanized when they are in pain and aren’t going to get better. There is no dignity in suffering.

    2. She got better health care than most people over the course of her life. She didn’t get chemo, because she was a 15 year old cat, but she got good care.

    (She got melanoma treated with an eye-ectomy a few years earlier, and she got lots of preventive care over the years…)

    3. as much as people joke that cats are a liquid, wow, a dead cat really is a liquid. Without muscles holding them in a cat shape, they are like slinkies. It was a little disturbing. But she got to die while being held and told that she was loved by someone she trusted, so freaking me out was not a bad trade off.

    4. Vets today are about as skilled as doctors for people about 10 years ago, which is honestly pretty amazing.

    5. My other cat is just not as good.

  100. Mister Bluster says:

    My sympathy to you Gustopher. My old Momcat was 17 when I had to have her put down. It was one of the hardest things that I’ve ever had to do. That was 25 years ago. I still have a picture of her on the refrigerator so I can see her every day.

  101. Jax says:

    @Gustopher: My deepest sympathies, my friend. It hurts so bad. I have always found some comfort in gathering up all of the pictures I had of that cat, and crying. I have occasionally had Fatheadz/calendars made for the kids if it was their cat, it helped them grieve. Me too, really.

  102. Jax says:

    @Gustopher: My Youtube algorithm found this for me tonight.

  103. de stijl says:


    She went out being held by her best friend. So much sympathy for you.

  104. de stijl says:


    Back when JT did not mean Justin Timberlake.

  105. Jax says:

    I have a funny story to tell about a cat.
    I have a “special needs” cat, her name is Runty. She’s 5 now.

    For a very long time, I have blamed my kids for their socks and stuffed animals being left out on the living room floor. Kids, right? They always looked at me funny when I yelled at them, “wait, what?! I didn’t do that!”

    About 6 months ago, Runty walked out with a bra in her mouth. Growling, meowing, stomping hard to haul her “fresh kill” out to the living room. Then I saw her do it with socks, stuffed animals, all kinds of other stuff.

    This whole time, I’ve been blaming my kids. And it was my cat.

    Yes, I apologized to my kids. 😉

  106. Jax says:

    @de stijl: Late Night OTB?
    Youtube gave me this. Oldie but goodie!

  107. Jax says:

    @de stijl: Awwww, now, see? This is one of my Momma’s favorite songs.

  108. de stijl says:

    Cats are awesome.

    Here. I brought a present. Enjoy your new dead mouse.

    I am too cool for this room. I am too cool for this house. I am too cool for this block.

    Large, very clumsy dumb thing who feeds me and cleans up my poop, you smell funny, so I’m now going to rub my face all over you for a bit to make you part of my crew.

    I mostly ignore you, but you do have a warm, comfy lap.

  109. Jax says:

    @de stijl: Hahahaha…EMBRACE THE PURR!!

    Youtube thought I’d like this.

    And I laughed my ass off!

  110. Jax says:

    @de stijl: This one isn’t too bad, either.

  111. de stijl says:


    I’m listening to Buddy Holly, Andrew Jackson Jihad aka AJJ now, The Mountain Goats, Sia, Crystal Castles, Superchunk, Guided By Voices, Marin Marais.

    It’s a weird playlist, but works for me.

  112. de stijl says:

    I have theory that cats are very worried and concerned about us. They are trying to nudge us into better behavior but we are too stupid to listen.

    You are awake waay too much. The sun is shining through this window right over here. Come over here! Sleep for a bit, wake up, stretch, go pee, have some water, then sleep some more. Wake up and give major side-eye to that asshole yorkie across the street who’s always sporting about in that window. Yah, I see you.

    It’s so easy! Come into the sunshine and nap a bit, you big clumsy dummy!

    Cats are perpetually annoyed at how dumb and obstinent and inefficiently bipedal we are. We just do not see the big picture. Which is napping is super cool.

    We refuse to lick ourselves clean.

    We are idiots, so they have to look after us and protect us.

  113. Mikey says:

    @de stijl: And we can’t hunt for shit. “Here, I gave you a dead mouse! See how it’s done? Gah…you’re hopeless. Now pet me.”

  114. Stormy Dragon says:


    Just remember that there are good cheese puns and bad cheese puns, but in the middle there’s a gruyèrea

  115. Stormy Dragon says:

    In response to one of Doug’s Tweets:

    In retrospect, it is clear that so-called conservatives didn’t care as much about the Constitution and the Rule of Law as they have claimed to. As I’ve said, what used to be “conservatism” has become Trumpism after a long process that began in the 90s with the rise of Gingrich.

    Anyone who claims to follow an “-ism” probably just doesn’t understand their own motivations. 99% of people are not driven by loyalty to abstract philosophical tenets. Those philosophies exist primarily as a way of retroactively imposing a coherent narrative on actions driven by other factors.

  116. In some Sunday news, Mike Bloomberg is running for President, and yes we’ve got a post up about it.

  117. MarkedMan says:

    Devin Nunes is a complete nutter. Paranoid Schizophrenic?

  118. gVOR08 says:

    @MarkedMan: That Nunes is nuts is unremarkable. What’s gobsmacking is that there are large numbers of people who voted for him, and will again.

  119. Gustopher says:

    @Mikey: Many, many years ago, I was adopted by a NYC alley cat who would semi-regularly try to teach me to hunt. She should bring me a live, stunned mouse, make sure she had my attention and drop it at my feet. The mouse would lie there for a moment, and then run away. The cat would just stare at me as if I was the stupid giant, hairless kitten that had once again not even chased the mouse.

    It was a very disapproving stare.

    I think it was usually the same mouse, or we had a lot of mice missing half their tail.

  120. DrDaveT says:

    @Stormy Dragon:

    Just remember that there are good cheese puns and bad cheese puns, but in the middle there’s a gruyèrea

    Not exactly: there are good ones and middlin’ ones, but the remainder are feta’ed.

  121. grumpy realist says:

    @Gustopher: Supposedly they bring you dead mice to get you familiar with the beasties, then they start bringing you live ones….

    One of our cats did that. Sauntered up to me one summer afternoon when I was sitting cross-legged on the ground and dropped a live mouse in my lap.

  122. Mister Bluster says:

    The only time I ever saw one of my tomcats, Bozo, with a mouse all I could see was the varmints back legs and tail hanging over the kittys chin as he gobbled it down. Yum!

  123. Jax says:

    My other cats all circle around Runty when she gets a live mouse, she’s not very good at getting them dead, so they run defense. 😉

    She has a birth defect, her tongue has no rasps, it’s smooth, so she has to get shaved 2-3 times a year. There is nothing quite as cute as a shaved Runty, she gets all feisty and ambushes us like a tiny black and white ninja.

  124. Teve says:

    Jim Roberts
    · 11h
    Donald Trump has taken to “working” from his private quarters in the White House rather than the Oval Office because he distrusts the staff around him.

  125. Mikey says:

    @Teve: So we’ve reached Führerbunker status, then?

  126. Teve says:

    Charles Johnson

    The best possible audience of rubes for a cynical con man is a credulous crew of religious fanatics, and Trump certainly has taken advantage of them. And vice versa. It’s a quid pro quo of fanaticism and fraud.

  127. de stijl says:


    What was your cat’s name?

    I’d like to toast him or her.

    I hope our shenanigans and sharing made this day easier for you.

  128. de stijl says:


    This will approach NSFW, but hopefully not cross the line.

    Let me get this straight.

    You have a cat (think different word with the same meaning), with a smooth tongue, who must be shaved regularly.

    OMMFG! Literally lol’ing.

    “There is nothing quite as cute than a shaved Runty…”

    Omg, omg, omg

    I have to take a breath. I’m getting light headed.

  129. Jax says:

    @de stijl: Hahahahaha…..I never thought of it like that when I was writing it, but it’s hilarious!

    I should tell you about the taco story, but it’s also probably not suitable for this forum now that we’ve all got that mental image in our heads!!! 😉

  130. de stijl says:


    So that was the comment that got swallowed by the auto too many embedded links goblin.

    Tip: you embed two links or less and you are aces. However, embed three (or more) in one comment, you’ll get auto jailed. Those are just the rules.

    It just sort of popped in the timeline.

    I like Richard and Linda Thompson. They possess every ingredient I love, but I just can’t get past like for them. Music is so subjective.

    Will definitely check out Mojave 3. Thanks for the steer!

    I’m geeking out right now to Elvis Costello’s Get Happy! which all the contemporary critics slagged as pop dross. High Fidelity is a top pop song in my book. There are loads of great songs on Get Happy!

    And The Attractions. It’s Elvis Costello and The Attractions, idiot brain.

  131. de stijl says:


    There is nothing quite so cute as a shaved Runty is definitely entering the lexicon of random things that make me laugh.

    Thank you. You made my week.

    Give Runty and good scratch behind the ears. A little tickle under her chin.

  132. Mister Bluster says:

    Apparently Navy Secretary Richard Spencer has walked the plank.

    In an extraordinary move, the Pentagon chief “fired” the Navy secretary Sunday for going outside his chain of command by proposing a “secret agreement with the White House,” according to a senior defense official.

  133. de stijl says:

    mr. robot is exceptionally framed and shot.

    Malek and Chaikin are so so so good. And Grace Gummer. Bobby Cannavale last season.

    Sam Esmail put together a great team that produces a cracker jack show. I thought S2 was dodgy, but in hindsight, it makes sense now.

    This is peak TV. Last week’s stage show. Wow.

  134. de stijl says:


    You will share the taco story sooner or later.

  135. DrDaveT says:


    So we’ve reached Führerbunker status, then?

    I was thinking about strawberries and a duplicate key, but the gist is the same.