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I am very painfully not awake. No sleep until after 5 a.m. this morning.

And I have to ask, are people getting stupider, or am I just noticing it more frequently? If they are getting stupider, I blame Twitter. And Oprah. And the pharmaceutical companies. And the fact that Britney Spears was allowed to breed.

Yesterday, I managed to write another 1,196 words on "At the Gate of Deeper Slumber," which will be appearing in Sirenia Digest #41 later this month. While we were reading yesterday's pages, Hubero snuggled with me, and Spooky got this photo, much to his eventual chagrin (behind the cut):







I looked out the window yesterday. Hardly a substitute for leaving the house, but it was the best I could manage. I looked out the window, and saw that the trees are now, finally, awash in a spray of new green. I think this dreadful winter might actually be behind us.

Last night, I suffered a three hour (!!!!!) dungeon crawl through Maraudon. When it was over, Shaharrazad socked Suraa in the nose and adjourned to the comforts of Orgrimmar, where she intends to get a room in the Drag, and hold up with booze and orc whores for at least a week.

Last night, I found the resolve to leave Second Life. For good. Forever. It's been almost two years since I began trying to use it for roleplay, as a means of generating what would be, essentially, interactive novels. And I now reluctantly admit defeat and pronounce the experiment a protracted, costly, embarrassing failure. Let someone else cast pearls before the swine. Anyway, I'll write more on this some other time, sometime when I'm less sleepy and can summon the requisite disgust. Anyway, don't look for me, because I'm not there. I will say that, disappointment aside, there is great relief that the whole mess is at long last behind me.

Okay. Where's the IV drip with the coffee/Red Bull blend?

Comments

( 23 comments — Have your say! )
jtglover
Apr. 21st, 2009 05:17 pm (UTC)
While I do not necessarily dispute that people are getting stupider, Yahoo's coverage leaves a bit to be desired. Also, to be frank, testing people on this in the PNW seems like a poor idea. There are so many gradations of precipitation there, and so much difference in people's attitudes (practical and cultural) to what one is supposed to do with respect to rain, that the situation is confused to begin with. I'd be much more interested in the results of a similar study repeated in a U.S. location with more distinct periods of precipitation and non-precipitation.
greygirlbeast
Apr. 21st, 2009 05:20 pm (UTC)
Yahoo's coverage leaves a bit to be desired.

It always does.

I'd be much more interested in the results of a similar study repeated in a U.S. location with more distinct periods of precipitation and non-precipitation.

I predict that Americans are getting stupider, no matter where you test them.

Edited at 2009-04-21 05:21 pm (UTC)
mrs_ralph
Apr. 21st, 2009 06:34 pm (UTC)
I don't think people are any stupider than they were 30 years ago if that's any comfort. I used to work in a jewellery store where we had a long-running 50% off sale, not one customer in ten could figure out what the sale price was for any given item. It wouldn't have been so bad but most of the prices were round numbers...how hard is it figure out what half of two hundred is?

I suspect schools are not concentrating hard enough on good old-fashioned math; especially things like times tables, fractions and percentages.
greygirlbeast
Apr. 21st, 2009 06:50 pm (UTC)

I don't think people are any stupider than they were 30 years ago if that's any comfort.

Not really. Thirty years ago (give or take), the were getting ready to elect Ronald Reagan president.

I suspect schools are not concentrating hard enough on good old-fashioned math; especially things like times tables, fractions and percentages.

I think they had to cut all that, to make room for important stuff, like Facebook and Twitter.
mrs_ralph
Apr. 21st, 2009 07:47 pm (UTC)
Actually it is the touchy feely, can't make anybody feel bad it might traumatise them stuff that is messing them up. No child left behind, no punishments just notes to Mom and Dad which they don't have time to read because they live in seperate places and are both scratching for a living. Back in my day you learned or you got kept behind and the idea of being stuck with a bunch of younger kids was enough to inspire a bit of effort. I believe you can learn a lot about the relativity of time if you have to spend an hour in detention after school on a nice spring day too. Of course the idea of what was going to happen when your folks found out was pretty good inspiration too. My mom was a dab hand with the flyswatter and she didn't limit its use to swatting flies either. XD
greygirlbeast
Apr. 21st, 2009 08:23 pm (UTC)

Actually it is the touchy feely, can't make anybody feel bad it might traumatise them stuff that is messing them up.

*groan*

Because, you know, they're all precious fucking flowers...
mrs_ralph
Apr. 21st, 2009 09:15 pm (UTC)
In a word, yes. It is hard to decide whether to laugh or cry because the news is banging on about packs of feral children. Uhm...maybe if someone took the time to show them there are repercussions for bad behaviour they wouldn't be quite so hard to manage?

Some of those precious little flowers need a good swift kick. Apparently one of them was in queue at lunch yesterday showing off his electronic surviellance ankle bracelet and bragging about getting a suspended sentence. There were a couple of young foreign students (female) behind him obviously wondering what they had let themselves in for by coming to school in England, or, at least, their expressions could have been in the dictionary under OMGWTFBBQ!!!111!!! I can't say I blame them, I probably have that look everytime I listen to the news.
humglum
Apr. 21st, 2009 06:55 pm (UTC)

Oh, goodness. I got exceedingly good with fractions and percents when I was working at a fabric store at the cutting tables. The scary thing was how I was constantly running across people who had no concept of how long a yard was, let alone the fractions of yards. Or how to use a calculator when we offered them one to figure out how much cloth they needed.

You're probably right about the math in schools. I wonder if kids are even taught to read "old fashioned" clocks any more?
mrs_ralph
Apr. 21st, 2009 08:03 pm (UTC)
I think they do still teach them to tell time on a clock face, it's something to do with prepping them for the workforce since some things still require knowing where the times are on the clock face and what direction the hands move in. As for the rest of the maths and reading some of the learning programs for that are pretty lacking and once you get to the High School level there is a sharp divide between the students who are following the university track and the ones who are following the vocational track. Mostly though it is the lack of consequences for not trying that seems to be a problem. No one wants their kid to get dentention or be held back so the schools have their hands tied. It's worse in England from what I can see. The teachers have no authority over the students and the students have no respect for persons or property so a number of teachers have to be satisfied with keeping the peace and trying to get out uninjured...the only thing that is keeping the kids in schools at the moment is that the government gives them a certain amount of money per week to attend.
greygirlbeast
Apr. 21st, 2009 08:21 pm (UTC)

the only thing that is keeping the kids in schools at the moment is that the government gives them a certain amount of money per week to attend.

Are you serious?!
mrs_ralph
Apr. 21st, 2009 08:31 pm (UTC)
Yep, dead serious. It is called EMA (Educational Maintanance Allowance) and it is available to all people who are 16 or over to continue their education at a college or university level. I'm not sure how many years you can qualify for it or how high the end age limit is (probably 60.) They started it up again last year and fall registration was a nightmare at most of the local colleges and universities. At the college my husband works at the time in the queue for registration was averaging around 6 hours. They had to put on special buses to keep people moving along out of the area after they had registered because the quad was so crowded and the regular buses were full as soon as they opened their doors.
robyn_ma
Apr. 21st, 2009 10:37 pm (UTC)
'I wonder if kids are even taught to read "old fashioned" clocks any more?'

Judging from the blank stares I get from kids at the library when they ask what time it is and I point to the grandfather clock, or say it's 'twenty of five' or whatever, I would say not.
humglum
Apr. 21st, 2009 11:46 pm (UTC)

My little sister had trouble with it in the early 80's, so I imagine it's a billion times worse these days.
martianmooncrab
Apr. 21st, 2009 07:32 pm (UTC)
Twitter. And Oprah. And the pharmaceutical companies

Bread and Circuses.. ooooh Lions!
grinkat
Apr. 21st, 2009 09:09 pm (UTC)
Education, or lack thereof...
You're probably right about the math in schools. I wonder if kids are even taught to read "old fashioned" clocks any more?

Not around here, in the educational & cultural black hole that is the Ozarks. The absence of any real education, and the emphasis on the whole "squishy feelgood" crap is why I pulled my daughter out of the public schools in order to homeschool; I refuse to raise an uneducated, unaware, and lifeless drone, like most of the other sheep being turned out of the public education factory these days.
robyn_ma
Apr. 21st, 2009 10:39 pm (UTC)
Bwahahaha, Hubero gets caught. 'Noooo, I iz not snuggly! I iz fierce n solitary. This iz libelous.'
greygirlbeast
Apr. 21st, 2009 10:39 pm (UTC)

'Noooo, I iz not snuggly! I iz fierce n solitary. This iz libelous.'

Almost word for word...
robyn_ma
Apr. 21st, 2009 10:46 pm (UTC)
'U realize I iz plottin to eet ur corpse wen u dies, rite?'

'Sure, Hubero. Now c'mere and get your ears skritched.'

'*purrrrrrr* i hatez u *purrrrrrrrr*'
greygirlbeast
Apr. 21st, 2009 11:38 pm (UTC)

'U realize I iz plottin to eet ur corpse wen u dies, rite?'

'Sure, Hubero. Now c'mere and get your ears skritched.'

'*purrrrrrr* i hatez u *purrrrrrrrr*'


So, your superpower is hearing conversations between me and Hubero from a great distance.
robyn_ma
Apr. 21st, 2009 11:47 pm (UTC)
No, my superpower is knowing pretty much how all conversations go between hoomans and cats.

Featuring such classics as:

'Ur not reedin dis, rite?' *sits dead center on what you're reading, gets comfortable*

'Hubero, I... *sigh* Fuck it. I'm gonna go take a bath.'
greygirlbeast
Apr. 21st, 2009 11:47 pm (UTC)

Damn, you're good.
runratboyrun
Apr. 22nd, 2009 09:24 pm (UTC)
i just blame the fact that people like britney breed. the only solace is that she has stopped at two. well for now at least.
ardiril
Apr. 23rd, 2009 11:29 am (UTC)
People are not getting stupider, you are getter more observant.
( 23 comments — Have your say! )