On A Portrait of the Alt-Bro as a Young Dumbass

Bring back Dear Polly!

Posted on September 17, 2014 at 1:46 pm 0

On Ask Polly: My Boyfriend Won't Stop Raging About My Sexual History

@jalmondale I thought up until the baseball thing that she was talking about my ex too! It literally sounded like the same guy to me also. So I'm throwing my chips on the Dump His Ass pile. Also, be prepared for some serious tantrum-throwing on his end if you reject him. This long-distance situation actually presents you with a prime opportunity to break it off, and deal with his inevitable backlash via phone (which you can hang up and turn off) and email or text, which is a written record that may come in handy if he ever starts to harrass you in person. Speaking of which, please know that when you start to loosen yourself from his grip he might ramp up the boundary violating and control by showing up at your house unexpectedly, or reaching out to your Team You to either mine information he can try to use against you, or to play baby-bird-with-a-broken-wing at them to manipulate pity out of them. Don't hesitate to call the police if he harrasses you, and let people close to you know that you're breaking it off. I wish I had at least considered calling the police much sooner than I did with my ex-who-was-exactly-fucking-like-this, because shit got scary and it was difficult to see it as dangerous while it was happening. I mean, you love and care about (and still trust even) the version of him that he initially sold you, and that version was not a stalker. But the real him very well might be. Wish you the best of luck. And seriously, dump his ass. In a year, you'll not only wonder what took you so long, but you'll start to remember even more red flags that you missed, and it will become an incredibly valuable lesson in fine-tuning your horseshit alarm system. *HUG*

Posted on June 12, 2014 at 11:10 am 1

On Ask Polly: I Survived a Hard Life, But I Never Learned How to Be Normal

@fancypants So good. You said it so good.

Posted on May 23, 2014 at 1:53 pm 1

On Ask Polly: I Survived a Hard Life, But I Never Learned How to Be Normal

LW, you sound like a truly lovely person to me. I would have given so much to find a friend like you when I was 23. I had a rough family situation as a teen and left home early, too. I experienced the same self-conscious, chasm-y feelings during my time of finding my social feet. I also weirded people out and really struggled with how to be light without feeling as though I was coming off as fake or just offensively awkward. Polly is right about how the lightness unfolds, though. It might take some time, but you'll find your people. And you will find that the process of developing yourself as a friend will be really rewarding. Wishing you all the best!

Posted on May 21, 2014 at 1:53 pm 0

On Ask Polly: I Thought My Mother-in-Law Was Going to Kill Me at My Wedding

@cmf406 So true. It amazes me how absolutely difficult it is to credibly describe BPD people, and to be believed. Of course part of the issue is that they do and say unbelievable, outrageous, crazy-making things. People who don't understand how these dynamics work instinctually try to reason with the sane ones in these situations because they want to reassure themselves on some level that normal people can "show compassion" or "turn the other cheek" or "work around this person" in order to prove that it is possible to exercise some sort of control over emotionally destructive people. And of course you can't control people or their abuse, but a common reaction among groups of inexperienced people is to put the burden on the victim to try. And it's important, as the sane victim who is neither at fault nor in control but merely unlucky, to not internalize that horse shit and stick to their boundaries. LW, you are brave and you are also a human with feelings. Take care of yourself, and have a happy life with your wonderful hubby.

Posted on May 16, 2014 at 10:37 am 1

On Ask Polly: I Was Dumped After a Freak Accident and I Can't Move On

@chevyvan Definitely! Those people are not obvious villains, and the tricky bit is they kill you slowly, with periods of rescuscitation between the really messy feeding times. LW, sending you love and understanding. Love and forgive yourself, you have so much to give to yourself, to this world, and to others who truly love and appreciate you.

Posted on May 9, 2014 at 7:07 pm 0

On But What About The Cop Horses?

@soulhorse What a cool job! I agree with you about the variance among horse owners, that is a good point. It is why regulation would be a good step.

Varying competence of horse ownership also provides a clue about the behavioral problems that are cited as well. Horses that are well trained, well cared-for and temperamentally suited to working do not generally "spook". If they're used to urban noises and lights, they can hang pretty well (and many carriage horses have blinders on too). The ones that are jumpy and miserable are that way because they're stressed out and in pain, or have the wrong temperament to do that kind of work in the first place. It's not because they are noises and lights are fundamentally incompatible with them. I sincerely hope that they get a vacation each year - that's heartening news.

Posted on April 23, 2014 at 2:03 pm 0

On But What About The Cop Horses?

@anthraxl rose What I really mean is, unless de Blasio is willing to regulate the ever-living fuck out of the carriage industry, he should shut it down. But a set of welfare standards, which ostensibly appear to be in place at NYPD already, should apply to the use of police horses. The mayor is correct that this is an "apples and oranges" comparison, but he's partially wrong about why.

Posted on April 23, 2014 at 12:36 pm 0

On But What About The Cop Horses?

It's not clear to me why the police horses are grouped in with the carriage horses. I've spent years working with horses and it appears that this comparison is flawed.

The welfare of police horses is properly addressed in terms of the horses' physical needs for the urban environment (good hoof care, balanced diet for their activity level). The fact that they are working horses is not a bad thing; the horses are selected for intelligence, agility, and willingness to work. Some breeds enjoy working, just as some breeds of dogs do. As long as they are properly cared for and not expected to perform beyond their physical limits (such as not getting adequate rest), they are incredibly useful for police work.

The carriage horses, on the other hand, do not appear to have any guarantee of good care. I've seen carriage horses whose hooves are in awful shape, and they are undoubtedly suffering. What's more, some of the harnesses fit poorly and restrict the horse's full range of motion in the neck, and this can cause injuries and chronic pain. You can tell they're in pain by the way they walk. These problems could be mitigated by enforcing policies on care standards, including restrictions on using horses that are too small to reasonably pull specific weight ranges. This is just my own observation, but I've never seen a police horse with bad hooves, or one that was out working with an injury. The carriage horses don't fare so well, and it really is too bad because, as strange as it sounds, some horses like having a job to do. They are like any other worker, however, in that they need protection from being run into the ground.

And further, have any of you ever actually smelled a horse up close? Their coats smell WONDERFUL. If their manure is cleared away each day, all that is left in the barn is the amazing smell of clean horse coat, hay and leather.

Posted on April 23, 2014 at 11:52 am 0

On Who Really Owns The Internet?

Nice article. Just a small correction: Ms. Taylor's husband's name is Jeff Mangum (not Magnum!).

Posted on April 22, 2014 at 10:02 am 0