Happy July!

Jul. 1st, 2015 03:21 am
conuly: (Default)
Rabbit, rabbit?

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Ruling Against "Three Strikes" Sentencing Law Opens Door to Reform (Credit where it's due, go Scalia! Have not actually read his opinion and don't intend to.)

Obama Making Millions More Americans Eligible for Overtime

“I think America is out of hand”: The shocking numbers that reveal just how burnt out American workers are

How the Professor Who Fooled Wikipedia Got Caught by Reddit

Justice Department Report Says Police Exacerbated Violence In Ferguson

Scientists program solitary yeast cells to say 'hello' to one another

How To Use All The Weird Toilets You’ll Find Outdoors

1 in 3 People Worldwide Don’t Have Proper Toilets, Report Says

Amnesiac woman found in California makes appeal for ID

Myanmar fisherman goes home after 22 years as a slave

Hibernating crustaceans sink masses of carbon in oceans

Researchers are racing to determine whether forests will continue to act as a brake on climate change by soaking up more carbon.

People labeled “smart” at a young age don’t deal well with being wrong. Life grows stagnant.

GOP declares war on the Supreme Court: What’s really behind the reactionary plot against the judiciary

U.S.-Cuba deal to restore ties to be unveiled on Wednesday

How Classroom Curriculum Can Impact Children’s Friendships

The Odd American View of Negotiation

Doctors hope to use herpes to cure cancer. Here’s how.

Woman gives birth, fights off bees, starts wildfire in Northern California

The American Ballet Theatre has named Misty Copeland its principal dancer - the first time a black ballerina has held the prestigious role.

Targeted LEDs could provide efficient lighting for plants grown in space

Cuba Stops Mother-to-Child HIV Transmission

The Resonant Frequency of Googly Eyes

New Hawaii law legalizes traditional 'clean burial' practice

The Strange Link Between Junk Food and Depression

The Supreme Court Just Stopped Texas From Closing Almost All Of Its Abortion Clinics

New nanogenerator harvests power from rolling tires

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conuly: (Default)
And her pencils, and her shirts, and her bracelet of beads which is bound to fall apart sooner or later, and her shirts. I did NOT tell her that at her age, I gnawed on my shirts as well. I certainly didn't tell her I used to tear off the corners of pages in books for the joy of placing them against my tongue and feeling them dissolve. (I did tell her that Jenn used to rub glue all over her hands because she liked peeling it off. That seems a fairly harmless hobby, unlike the shirts.)

Instead, I caved and ordered her a chewy necklace, and now Ana wants one too. Well, if it keeps them both happy.

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On Tuesday, the world gets a ‘leap’ second. Are we all gonna die?

New study deciphers bird sounds to reveal language precursors in babbler birds

Almost a third of China's Great Wall has disappeared

In a Brave, Powerful Dissent, Justice Breyer Calls for the Abolition of the Death Penalty

Fingerprints change over time, but not enough to foil forensics (The summation is pretty much the entire article. I won't blame you if you don't click.)

New York bans 'poor doors' in win for low income tenants

NSA Employees Are Training Service Dogs While Working

How States Are Fighting to Keep Towns From Offering Their Own Broadband

Disgust dampens women's sexual arousal more than fear

Lego To Replace Oil-Based Plastics



How should I get rid of old Barbies and Legos? (Takeaway: There are charities that specifically accept random lego blocks.)

Why Coke Cost A Nickel For 70 Years

The Most Important Population Statistic That Hardly Ever Gets Talked About

Years Of Pretending Netflix Cord Cutting Wasn't Real Is Biting The Cable Industry In The Ass (If you're convinced that the free hand of the market works because all players act rationally at all times, re-read the first paragraph, and maybe crack open a history book while you're at it. Or any book, really.)

Why police don't pull guns in many countries

We’ve Got Some Great Female Superheroes—But Study Shows We Can Still Do Better

Palestinian striker to be freed, Israelis injured in attacks

New “corner cloak” directs light around sharp bends

Girl Scouts choose transgender girls over $100,000 donation

Israel stops flotilla seeking to break Gaza blockade

Were All Those Rainbow Profile Photos Another Facebook Study?

In Nigeria, the hustle that makes Lagos bustle

Spiky monsters: New species of 'super-armored' worm discovered

Roundup of SCOTUS' recent crazy productive spree

Airplane Coatings Help Recoup Fuel Efficiency Lost To Bug Splatter

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conuly: (Default)
It's weird, I remember the Smithy fight involving multiple Come Backs and running low on all items, but this time around I didn't even use any of my six (SIX!) carefully hoarded Red Essences. Maybe the website got the game wrong. The boss fight was rather anticlimactically over in just a few minutes.

Annoyingly, this time around I was unable to win the Yoshi race. I don't know what's up, but clearly the keyboard is a little wonky and the timing is perpetually off.

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A 30-Second Guide to How the Gay Marriage Ruling Affects You

LGBT Activists Are Still Fighting

Report: Only 47,000 Social Justice Milestones To Go Before U.S. Achieves Full Equality

Stephen Colbert Reacts to the Supreme Court Marriage Decision

A Quick Guide to Spotting Graphics That Lie

No sanctuary from deportation as migrants stay trapped in a legal limbo

Dark Matter Just Got Darker (and Weirder)

New questions about why more women than men have Alzheimer's

Macedonia tells banks to pull money from Greece

Youth Chorus Unites Israelis and Palestinians, at Least for a Few Hours

6 Insane Space Stories You Didn't Learn In History Class

Where Girls Are Missing Out on High-School Sports

In Defense of Fiber: How Changing Your Diet Changes Your Gut Bacteria

Puerto Rico in crisis: weighed down by $73bn debt as unemployment hits 14%

Why Time Will Stop For a Leap Second

Returning to ‘Avalon,’ the text-based dungeon game some never left

The Lonely End (Note: This article has graphic discussion of human remains)

7 Things No One Tells You About Being Homeless
conuly: (Default)
Geez, is it going to be doing this all weekend?

Well, in keeping with yesterday's good news, I have a different link.

“Running of the interns outside the Supreme Court 6/26/2015″

I had no idea this was a thing.

Ana was delighted with the news, Eva was just confused. I think she thought it was a done deal already? (Also, if you need to cleanse your palate after trying to wade through any of the dissenting opinions - and I suggest you don't read them unless you have a strong need of an emetic - you can read excerpts from the majority opinion here.)

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Songbirds have a thing for patterns

This Dutch City Plans to Give Residents a Universal ‘Basic Income’

What's Killing the Babies of Vernal, Utah?

A 100-Year Debate About the Eardrum Comes to an End

The Republican war on vegetables: How new dietary guidelines brought out the GOP’s inner petulant child

Congress Doesn't Think Agricultural Sustainability Has Anything to Do With Your Health

Dutch campaigners fly abortion pills into Poland

Scientists Invent an Oil Spill Cleanup Chemical That Quickly Biodegrades

Columbia becomes first U.S. university to divest from prisons

Rats dream about the places they wish to go (YOU HAVE TO CLICK THE LINK TO SEE THE ADORABLE PICCIE!)

Starfish that clone themselves live longer

What Happens When Oligarchs and Vigilantes Take Over Public Safety in a Big City

Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head: A Mosquito’s Lament

Vatican signs first treaty with 'State of Palestine', Israel angered

There's a giant penis in Norway going around firing glitter at people (Don't worry, it's for a good cause!)

Monster galaxy swallowed another, smaller galaxy

Kalief Browder was a Good Kid. Should That Matter?

Watch What Happens When a Can of Coke Meets Liquid Nitrogen

Toys resembling disabled children (9 Photos)

What Muslims around the world eat to break their fast during Ramadan




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conuly: (Default)
If gays are a tiny minority then it surely doesn't harm you to let them do what they like.

Of course, you can be a tiny minority and still be a sizable number of people. Statistics show that only about 3% of the US identify as gay or bisexual. We have no idea how many people might simply be deeply closeted and not admit they are gay or bisexual, but then, those people are unlikely to get into a same-sex relationship in the near future so let's ignore them.

The US is the third most populous nation in the world, right after China, India, and the EU. (Okay, except the EU isn't a nation, now is it?) We have just over 321 million people. Minors make up about a quarter of the population, and like closeted gays are also unlikely to get married in the near future, so that leaves, what, 313 million people? Of whom nearly 10 million are gay or bisexual?

Okay, that may be a "tiny minority of the population", but it's also half the population of the greater New York metropolitan area. Or, put another way, it's about 25% greater than the population of NYC. However you want to slice it, 3% of the population of the US is going to add up to a lot of people.

I'm not sure if people making this claim simply can't do math, or if they don't want to.
conuly: (Default)
by finding somebody to get gay married to (or non-gay married, I'm openminded), we could celebrate by her picking me up a burrito from Chipotle.

She seems remarkably unconvinced by my stirring argument. This is because she is teetering on the precipice of worst sister ever. (But she can redeem herself and become the best sister ever by getting me that burrito.)

Anyway, once all is said and done I might update this post with a complete list of great images I've seen so far. It might be a looooooooong list.

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The meaning of the Confederate flag is best discerned in the words of those who bore it.

Face of bizarre sea creature Hallucigenia revealed

Urban microbes come out of the shadows

Christ, Not Even Jurassic World's Dinosaur Toys Are Allowed to Be Female

How ‘organs-on-chips’ could end animal testing

Why cycletrack networks should be the next great American transit project

The Sikhs who saved Parmesan

Marvel's New Spider-Man Is Our Third White Peter Parker In 15 Years

Sony can make a black Spider-Man movie, it just doesn’t want to

Drastic acceleration of HIV fight needed to stop AIDS resurgence

Fat is back: New guidelines give vilified nutrient a reprieve

Oslo builds its bees a highway of flowers

Thai Buddhists to help anti-Muslim Myanmar monks set up radio station

Middle-Class Black Families, in Low-Income Neighborhoods

NYT Summer Reading List Finally Achieves 100 Percent Whiteness

The Increasing Scarcity of Helium

Listening to 'extreme' music makes you calmer, not angrier, according to study

The Surprisingly Imperfect Science of DNA Testing

The writer of this note is treading a very fine line between passive aggressive and simply aggressive aggressive

Smart insulin patch could replace painful injections for diabetes

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conuly: (Default)
Okay, so four out of nine justices are assholes, and at least two of them couldn't put together a coherent argument if they tried (but Scalia and Thomas barely have three brain cells between the two of them, so what do we expect?) but it's still good news!

Damnit, where's my confetti?
conuly: (Default)
The Association for Psychological Science. Somebody linked to them in the same comment they linked to The Blaze, and since I'm determined to be open-minded and shit I'm not rejecting both links out of hand, just one of them. So... is The Association for Psychological Science reputable, credible, legit? Or is it a right wing organization dedicated to the promotion of shoddy science?
conuly: (Default)
First they wake me up an hour early to go to field day... then, when I finally manage to get up and to the store to get food for field day they fall asleep and I keep having to shake them awake to get dressed and eat something!

They did, of course, complain (and rightly so) that they hadn't spent enough time with other kids this year... but when I got to field day (up in the freaking East Meadow, which is an act of love for me to go there) they complained that they didn't WANT to go out and spend time with people.

I finally got them to eat something, which perked them up, so Ana went off with a friend of hers from book club and Eva joined in the activities and never spoke to anybody. Between the two of them we officially accomplished Mission: Socialize! Maybe next time around they'll both talk to people and both join in. An aunt's dreams must exceed her grasp, right?

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Can the Bacteria in Your Gut Explain Your Mood?

American recycling is stalling, and the big blue bin is one reason why

A Linguist Explains How We Write Sarcasm on the Internet

Marvel launches mixed race Spider-Man (In the main continuity, not the Ultimate Universe.)

Surprisingly Healthy Teeth Write a New Chapter in Ancient History

What becomes of the babies of incarcerated mothers? Research suggests that having nurseries in prisons leads to lower recidivism rates for moms and better outcomes for their kids.

What’s Justice for Kids Who Kill?

Counting crows’ neurons work just like yours

Study: Repeal of Obamacare would increase deficit, up uninsured 20 million

Amazing Pictures: Baby Chameleon Doesn't Know It Hatched

Millennials are No Less Racist than Generation X

Italy’s answer to Alcatraz, the island vineyard where inmates are taught the secrets of winemaking

Sixth Mass Extinction Really Started Thousands of Years Ago (Well, no shit, I've been saying it for years.)

The Jewish-Arab running club that’s uniting some of Jerusalem’s teens

In The West Bank, Facebook Posts Can Get You Arrested, Or Worse

Wooden combination lock

For centuries, experts have predicted that machines would make workers obsolete. That moment may finally be arriving. Could that be a good thing?

Tensions build as Supreme Court readies blockbuster rulings

This Week in Science: Measuring the Mass of a Black Hole, The Coldest Molecule on Earth, A New Laser Based Space Propulsion Method, and So Much More! (Be sure to read about that laser propulsion method.)

Map: Where Europe is growing and where it is shrinking

Supreme Court says government seizure of raisins is unconstitutional

Walmart, Amazon, Sears, eBay to stop selling Confederate flag merchandise

The Tale of My Daughters' Penises


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conuly: (Default)
I said I'd spend money like there was no tomorrow, that's what. Kindle books, streaming videos, nice dinners, Broadway plays, day trips - there's plenty of things to consume in a 24 hour window when you have no fear of the consequences down the line!

I had a huge headache today, which is probably a message from my guardian angel (or whatever) telling me I'm extraordinarily dehydrated and I need to drink more water. Duly noted. I had promised to take the girls to see Inside Out, though, so I gleefully took them, bought only two tickets, and spent the length of the movie reading a book because they're old enough to go to the movies alone!

The Regal Cinema at Battery Park City is on the third floor of a rather nice building, and nobody knows about it, so it's never crowded. On the second floor there are three rather large circular bench mat things, two together under one escalator and the third tucked in a different corner. The bench cushions (or whatever they are) are a little longer in diameter than a twin mattress, and every child who passes by jumps on them. Sometimes they roll, and sometimes they flop, and sometimes they keep bouncing around for a while, but they all jump on them.

I didn't know that when I chose that as my place to hunker down, or I might have sat somewhere else. Still, I amused myself by watching the kids jumping around, and made a few interesting observations (at least, they were interesting to me).

The kids jumped on with the same frequency whether they were male or female. I only saw two parents comment on this negatively, one who called it "disgusting" (?!) because "you saw those kids on it earlier" and then pointed out that the kid had come within a few feet of me and could've theoretically bumped into me (lady, I'm the one sitting where your kid can't see me on the approach, it's hardly his fault!) and one who laughed at her younger child (her son and daughter both having rolled on the cushion thingy) and asked "are you a boy?", which really left a bad taste in my mouth. I wish I'd called after them that EVERY child did the same thing, boy or girl, but they were already at the escalator, and what was I going to do, chase after them?

Of the adults, only a few climbed on them, mostly fathers (or men with kids, anyway), sometimes men with girlfriends or wives. Never men alone or with other men, and while some women were persuaded to sit or lie down for a brief moment on the cushions they never flopped down like the kids and rare men did, they simply sat after their kid or partner asked them to.

Nobody gave me a second glance when I was sitting on the cushions under the escalator, but when I eventually moved to the single cushion next to the OTHER escalator (less chance of being jumped on!) every person going up the escalator turned to stare at me for a second. I have no idea why this should be the case, but so it goes.

The girls liked the movie, and they liked that they were allowed to sit without me, and I certainly liked that I didn't need to spend an additional $20 on my own ticket. (Plus, Ana is short enough that nobody questioned me on getting her the children's price, even though she's a few months too old. Win! Of course, that theater's approach to ticket taking is so refreshingly lax that many times I've simply strolled in because nobody was there to TAKE my ticket. I always buy one anyway, but I really don't have to.)

Huh.

Jun. 21st, 2015 01:50 am
conuly: (Default)
I stayed up waaaaay too late reading a new book. Jenn is in Toronto, so the girls got themselves up, dressed, and fed and then went to their friends' dance recital they'd been invited to and took the bus home on their own (well, they were put on the bus by Michele). When they came home, they declared their intention of making dinner and shooed me from the kitchen.

If they weren't scared to go into the basement and do their own laundry, the adults in this family would be utterly superfluous.

I'm not sure how I feel about that yet!

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Saharan silver ants can control electromagnetic waves over extremely broad spectrum range

Stop eating Nutella and save the forests, urges French ecology minister. (In addition to the palm oil, Ferraro has not yet eradicated slave labor in its production.)

Zoologger: The fish that can vanish in 2 seconds flat

Why I Answered My Dad’s Gay Sex Ad

Medics celebrate 'remarkable' step to eliminating flesh-burrowing worm

Washington Berry Pickers Push For Elusive Union Contract

Kangaroos are left-handed, study finds

Why Footbinding Persisted in China for a Millennium

Answer to a 150-Year-Old Math Conundrum Brings More Mystery

How Germany does prison

Titan's Weird Surface Dissolves Like Earth's Sinkholes

Saturn's Moon Titan Has Polar Winds, Just Like Earth

Teens may be misled by crisis pregnancy center websites

The True Face of Medicare Fraud

Signs of democracy seen in typically authoritarian baboon society

Report: US drug deportations tearing families apart

Despite Soaring Popularity, Women’s Sports Got More Coverage a Generation Ago

Starfish Ruin an Experiment and Reveal a Superpower

Glowing diamonds make great thermometers

Has America Given Up on the Dream of Racial Integration?

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conuly: (Default)
I don't always want a cat on me, contrary to popular opinion. Previously, her only recourse was to stare at me until I relented, but recently she learned that if she flops down next to me she can sort of sidle her way under my arm. One minute I'm reading a book, the next I'm hugging a cat! How did THAT happen? Flop-sidle, that's how.

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Japanese-American couple interned by U.S. in WW2 get high school diplomas

Gravity Kills Schrödinger's Cat

Moroccan villagers harvest fog for water supply

In Dominican Republic, deportations cast long shadow

Google to remove revenge porn search results

Capitol Hill abuzz after 15,000 honey bees swarm Senate entrance

My father’s medical mystery

‘This could be a real game-changer’: protein points to cure for life-limiting disease

Refugees given a chance to grow their future in US

Study: Flu Viruses Travel on US Roads and Railways

Musicians don't just hear in tune, they also see in tune

Cat wins shelter's Hero Dog award for saving kid from canine

It’s not about mental illness: The big lie that always follows mass shootings by white males

Indian man loses long legal battle over his own birth

Did Ebola Strike Ancient Athens?

Children with good memories 'tell better porkies'

Dutch paediatricians back right to die for under 12s

Mormon church to make available records of 4 million freed slaves

Picky Eaters Are Not All Alike

Biotech firm creates fake rhino horn to reduce poaching

#EndAusterityNow: Tens of thousands march against austerity measures in London

The Story of One Whale Who Tried to Bridge the Linguistic Divide Between Animals and Humans

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conuly: (Default)
Last summer we got tons of eggplant and zucchini, and almost no tomatoes, so I broke with tradition and took a single share this year. What do you want to bet we'll be drowning in tomatoes and I'll want more more more?

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Christian Denomination Plans To Avoid Civil Rights Laws By Pretending Receptionists Are ‘Ministers’

In the 1950s, a group of Inuit children were taken from their families in Greenland to be re-educated as model Danish citizens. More than 60 years later, they want the Danish government to apologise for an experiment that did enormous damage.

Why is a Chinese tycoon building a $50 billion canal in Nicaragua that no one wants?

Antarctica Growing Green With Grass

Here's the Latest Evidence of How Private Prisons Are Exploiting Inmates for Profit

Individuals with social phobia have too much serotonin -- not too little

Here Is the World's First Engine Driven by Nothing But Evaporation

House Republicans Propose Stripping Family Planning Services From Millions Of Low-Income Women

The logic question six-year-olds can answer, but leaves adults baffled

Deadline looms for legal status in Dominican Republic

The widespread belief that sophisticated sanctions provide policy makers with a silver bullet for addressing intractable national-security issues is wrong.

The military playing field is more even than it has been for many years. That is a big problem for the West

The Blight of the Honey Bee

Hacker Can Send Fatal Dose to Hospital Drug Pumps

Why Are Fewer American Women Getting Abortions?

New anti-malaria drug developed at Dundee University

Moon dust is filling in the astronaut footprints

New U.S.-Philippine military deal, already on ice, could face further delays

Worm Brain Yields Secret to How Animals Sense Earth's Magnetic Field

The $10 bill will soon feature a woman. But the debate is only beginning.

Sweden announces first centre for raped men

Graffiti and Virgil.

Poll shows Americans are starting to worry about climate change again

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conuly: (Default)
Eva went out the other day with a cooking pot to gather mulberries. After an hour she came back in with a purple face. I saw her on the stairs and went "Oh, did you get a lot?" and she burst into tears.

Apparently, she wanted to collect them to make jelly. A fine idea (excepting the fact that we need pectin to make jelly, and without it the most we can do is syrup), but she accidentally ate all her mulberries and didn't put any in the pot! Whoops.

Poor Eva!

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Scientists discover a bacterium that "breathes" uranium and renders it immobile

Study: Private contracts encourage federal immigrant detentions

Border Patrol absolves itself in dozens of cases of lethal force

What's in a name? 'Death-associated protein' promotes cancer growth in most aggressive breast cancers

The Surprising Demographics of American Slavery

You Can Thank Genetic Engineering For Your Delicious Cheese

Play Set in Israeli Prison Imperils Arab Theater

NASA spacecraft finds strange lights on dwarf planet

Crowdfunding for kids' summer programs takes off

World's Thinnest Light Bulb Created from Graphene

Pope Francis' Climate Change Encyclical Just Leaked. Here's What It Says.

How theme parks like Disney World left the middle class behind

Texas pool party incident sparks protests - and police support

Hawkmoths slow their brains to see at night

U.S. justices refuse to restore North Carolina abortion ultrasound law

Scientists Create World's Coldest Molecules Ever

Pay low-income families more to boost economic growth, says IMF

Oil refineries use a ton of water—and a lot of them are in drought-plagued California.

Arid Tucson leads the way in water conservation out West

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conuly: (Default)
God DAMN it. It's going to be raining all week, too.
conuly: (Default)
The kids went on in roughly age order - and the dance school had the bright idea to split the performance into two shows rather than one long show with an intermission, so we weren't sitting on those seats too long!

The pre-ballet was appropriately adorable, and I was quite surprised by how much they expect of the babies! No tears or freakouts, though, and none of them got *too* far off cue.

The older kids were fairly impressive. The goal at this school is simply to showcase what the kids learned rather than to "do a show", so perhaps it isn't surprising that all the age groups had a prompter instead of just the babies.

And, of course, the girls. They got a special speech about how they were really beginners despite being older students, so I was braced for the worst - after all, I know the huge discrepancy between the amount of practicing they should have done and the amount they actually did! But no, they were nigh on perfect. It was great.

And they got report cards which stated that they were a "joy" and made "great progress" (yeah, we could see that) and they hoped to see them over the summer!

We really lucked into a good dance school. I worried so much, but my ultimate selection criteria was apparently inspired.

Afterwards the family went home and I bought my can opener. And then I went to The Strand. This is entirely because I wanted to and not even a little because I accidentally got on the wrong bus followed by the wrong train and figured that since I had to transfer at 14th and walk a bit anyway I might as well stop somewhere with a water fountain and a toilet in the process. That's my story, and I'm sticking to it!

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