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January 1, 2013

Comments on Happy New Year!:
#1 ::: Stefan Jones ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 01:02 AM:

Belated Happy New Year to the East Coasters!

I had a good year. The world, and certain friends in particular, not so much. I'm hoping things are better for everyone in 2013.

I spent the day moving stuff. I hope I have enough umph left to make it to midnight, PST.

In the meantime, I'm watching "Moonrise Kingdom" again. A splendidly peculiar film.

#2 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 01:13 AM:

Happy New Year to all, and to all a good night.

#3 ::: C. Wingate ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 01:29 AM:

And to 2012 I say, "good riddance."

#4 ::: Tom Whitmore ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 01:45 AM:

It's still not midnight here, so happy new year to all -- we'll probably not be up at midnight. What can I say, we're wimps.

#5 ::: CZEdwards ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 02:20 AM:

Oh... Right. That's why I'm hearing pops and crackles.

Don't let the door hit ya on the way out, 2012.

May 2013 be one in which we cooperate with others to better build up a new world rather than fighting to destroy the old*.

*Shamelessly borrowed from the Friends Ambulance Service.

#6 ::: thomas ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 03:00 AM:

So far in 2013 it has been a perfect summer day, and I've made my best mole poblano ever, from a book I got for Christmas.

Duck! Here comes another year!

#7 ::: Andrew Wells ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 04:30 AM:

And a Happy New Year to everyone here!

#8 ::: Jules ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 06:41 AM:

Happy new year from those of us who have been up long enough to get over the hangover. (I'm sure last year's lasted all day... Must have done something wrong this time.)

#9 ::: Janet K ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 07:32 AM:

Happy New Year!

I comment here rarely but I read Making Light faithfully and would like to take this opportunity to thank all of you who make it such a delightful point of light on the Net.

#10 ::: TexAnne ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 08:09 AM:

Out of curiosity, how did you pick these posts, Jim? Number of comments, personal taste, what? Because I liked Abi's polder post so much I used it in class, and one of my students thought it came out of a book in spite of the URL right there on the page.

In other news, it's not a new year for teachers. Ask me again in September, when it's possible I won't be all grumpy.

#12 ::: Janet K ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 08:29 AM:

Auld Lang Syne beautifully sung by Ine Braat (from the Netherlands! with lovely scenery and cute animals, too!).

#13 ::: Serge Broom ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 08:49 AM:

And a Happy Birthday to Patrick!

#14 ::: Dave Harmon ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 09:20 AM:

Happy New Year! Went out to First Night Virginia with my new friend, got to hear a lot of local bands, and even danced a bit (it's been years and possibly decades) near the end.

#15 ::: Anne Sheller ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 09:42 AM:

Happy New Year! I was at work at midnight, but we had no customers and chores were caught up, so I went outside and blew 12 blasts on my stadium horn to bring the new year in.

#16 ::: beth meacham ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 10:53 AM:

A very happy new year to all! May 2013 be a good one for you.

#17 ::: Jim Macdonald ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 11:03 AM:

TexAnne #10: I picked the posts by Patrick or Teresa (other than open threads) that had received the most comments.

#18 ::: Diatryma ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 11:20 AM:

I'm actually okay with 2012. For several years, it seemed that everyone I knew was having terrible times; every New Year, all my friends would fervently hope that next year would be better, that next year would be neutral. This year, I'm seeing much less of that. I'm okay with where I am for now. I'm okay with how things are. That's a big change, and I'm glad of it.

#19 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 11:47 AM:

Happy New Year!

#20 ::: Lizzy L ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 12:31 PM:

For a few of the people I love, 2012 was a terrible year which closed in sorrow. For most, and for me, it was not bad. For all of us, I hope for a peaceful 2013. Let us be kind to one another.

#21 ::: Ginger ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 01:46 PM:

2012 was far better than 2010, but there's still room for improvement. Here's to 2013, may she be even better than last year!

#22 ::: praisegod barebones ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 01:48 PM:

@OP: On the whole, I prefer elliptical functions to grapefruit, and Hapsburg monarchs to both.

#23 ::: KayTei ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 03:56 PM:

Glad to see it go. This new year is so promising of really interesting adventures. I am hopeful that it will be a really positive year for everyone.

#24 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 04:08 PM:

Happy MMXIII to all. MMXII is so hesterne die.

#25 ::: Lori Coulson ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 04:50 PM:

Happy New Year!

I am attempting to follow the activities in Washington, DC and trying to figure out what the heck is going on. Can anyone explain to me what happened?

#26 ::: Paula Helm Murray ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 06:06 PM:

Happy New Year! Has to be better, then again, thankfully 2012 was not any worse than it was. I hope everyone has a rocking 2013!

#27 ::: Terry Karney ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 06:09 PM:

Here's to a better future.

#28 ::: Theophylact ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 06:21 PM:

Lori Coulson @ #25: Perhaps the late Rev. C. L. Dodgson could. But if you're asking about rational analysis, no, not really. The Republican Party stopped behaving rationally back in the mid-nineties, when it tried to impeach and remove a popular, successful Democratic President for lying about a blowjob. It's gone way down the insane clown path since then.

#29 ::: Lin Daniel ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 09:23 PM:

2012 has been a year of amazing highs and truly dreadful lows, bellylaughs and heartbreaking sobs, and the days in between where I managed to survive. A lot of the lows caused a lot of the highs, and while I really don't want to give up the highs, I hope that the PowersThatBe don't feel the need to make 2013 quite the rollercoaster ride.

To quote jan finder, may the best of the past be the worst of the future!

Happy New Year!

#30 ::: elise ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2013, 10:32 PM:

Happy New Year!

Love and light and luck and laughter, and the wit to appreciate the good things we are given, especially each other.

#31 ::: Linkmeister ::: (view all by) ::: January 02, 2013, 01:47 AM:

A belated Hau'oli Makahiki Hou to the Fluorosphere.

#32 ::: dcb ::: (view all by) ::: January 02, 2013, 03:00 AM:

One day late, but: Happy New Year, everyone! May this be a good, healthy and fruitful (in whatever way is appropriate) year for everyone.

#33 ::: beth meacham ::: (view all by) ::: January 02, 2013, 09:07 AM:

And a Happy Birthday to Patrick!

#34 ::: elise ::: (view all by) ::: January 02, 2013, 11:28 AM:

Yep, all hail the Patrick-birthday! (Dear me, I sound like the Aislinn Mice.)

There is about to be celebratory gyoza, as soon as I get ready to go out with him to the gyoza-and-ramen joint he suggested. I better find my coat.

#35 ::: Tom Whitmore ::: (view all by) ::: January 02, 2013, 12:01 PM:

Indeed, Happy Birthday to Patrick!

#36 ::: rea ::: (view all by) ::: January 02, 2013, 01:29 PM:

Thomas @ 6--I've had chicken, turkey, and shrimp with mole poblano, but I've never tried it with duck . . .


#37 ::: Bill Stewart ::: (view all by) ::: January 02, 2013, 01:29 PM:

Lori Coulson@25, I've seen Congress's behaviour this week explained as cartoon physics. Character runs past the edge of the cliff, stays in the air but notices his feet aren't getting any traction, then looks down and (depending on what they did overnight) either runs back onto the cliff or grabs a handy tree branch or falls off. Or jumps back onto the cliff, gets hit by approaching train/buffalo/oceanliner, and falls back off again.

(But serious discussion belongs on some other thread. Happy New Years! And thanks for a year of great discussions.)

#38 ::: Suzanne ::: (view all by) ::: January 02, 2013, 03:26 PM:

Happy New Year, everyone!

I missed the Hugo YA thread and kerfuffle back when it came by (2012 was a busy year for me) but I have to say I was really pleased to see discussion of how impermeable fandom can be, particularly to younger fans (and by extension, to fans with kids.) I didn't think I'd see that directly addressed from inside the community, and as discouraging as it is to know I'm not the only one to feel that way, at least if we can talk about it, maybe we can start making it better.

#39 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: January 02, 2013, 04:20 PM:

Happy birthday to Patrick!

#40 ::: Velma ::: (view all by) ::: January 02, 2013, 08:50 PM:

Happy New Year, all! And happy birthday, Patrick!

#41 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: January 02, 2013, 10:00 PM:

Happy birthday, Patrick!

#42 ::: Nicole J. LeBoeuf-Little ::: (view all by) ::: January 02, 2013, 11:02 PM:

Happy New Year! Happy Birthday Patrick!

2012 was mixed for us personally. Mostly good. John got an awesome new job which he still loves, and it started paying for health insurance so we could say goodbye to the private insurer that had more than doubled its premiums since we enrolled (and kept sending us nasty little notes saying "Because of the Affordable Health Care Act we are now forced to do X Y and Z, sorry"); I sold another story; one of my better-paying freelance writing gigs became viable again; we both went on fun and fulfilling trips. Some not so good, though. The biggest blows were the terminal diagnoses for both of our 15+ year old cats: Null of kidney disease and Uno of a tumor. Null left us over Memorial Day weekend. Uno is still with us and reasonably comfortable thanks to his army of medications. We're painfully aware he's unlikely to make it through another year, though.

I think no matter what the balance had been in 2012, I could always hope for better in 2013. So here's to that. Here's to making the best of what comes to us, and treating each other and ourselves with all the compassion within our reach. Here's to writing more, enjoying the work, playing more games, eating and drinking yummy things, taking significant steps towards lifelong goals, making good ends when ends are necessary and making good beginnings full of hope and joy. To 2013 and beyond!

#43 ::: Avram ::: (view all by) ::: January 02, 2013, 11:59 PM:

I just spent some time slurping down last year’s archives and stuffing the relevant bits into an Excel spreadsheet. Assuming I didn’t botch it, then if we include Open Threads, 11 of the 12 most comment-getting threads started in 2012 were Open Threads (579–962 comments). The only one that wasn’t was the Dysfunctional Families thread (923 comments and still going). The 13th was Politics open thread 1 (579 comments); if we count that as an Open Thread and exclude it from our stats, the top dozen comment-attractors for the year were:

  1. Dysfunctional Families: Everybody lined up for the parade? (Abi, 923 comments)
  2. Guns, police, class, society (Teresa, 472 comments)
  3. Election 2012: the morning after the morning after (Patrick, 463 comments)
  4. Regarding a Hugo Award category for YA fiction (Patrick, 388 comments)
  5. When we were young, we talked about ideas. Now all we talk about is words. (Abi, 382 comments)
  6. Chicon Plans (Abi, 370 comments)
  7. Mangling the history of fanfic (Patrick, 319 comments)
  8. The return of the evil spelling test (Teresa, 319 comments)
  9. Obvious nonsense about SF sales history (Patrick, 316 comments)
  10. Portal fantasies, and cycles of desire (Teresa, 309 comments)
  11. English usage rant (Patrick, 308 comments)
  12. Can’t you hear beyond the croaking? (Abi, 298 comments)

#44 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: January 03, 2013, 01:04 AM:

Interesting. Last year, for the first year since I've been posting here, I posted over 1,000 comments.

#45 ::: Tamlyn ::: (view all by) ::: January 03, 2013, 02:25 AM:

Happy New Year all!

I feel good about 2013. I hope that good will last.

#46 ::: abi ::: (view all by) ::: January 03, 2013, 06:17 AM:

Avram @43:

I'd say that Dysfunctional Families threads are categorically similar to Open Threads; I close them and start a new one when they creep toward the magic number (I'm putting together another one now, in point of fact). Given that, if you drop the DF thread off the top, then "Please enter a valid last name" (Patrick, 296 comments) moves into 12th place.

Of course, "most commented on" is only one measure of "top"; I think that any definition that excludes Jim's O Shipmates Come Rally, Teresa's link-rich Some reasons I read fanfic (with its even more link-rich comment thread), Patrick's clear-headed piece on Making Light to go dark against SOPA and PIPA, and your interesting take on voting in Getting more than your two bits' worth, is not one I'd subscribe to. (This is leaving aside a few of the things I've written here this year that have mattered to me; I'm definitionally biased there.)

Also, Happy New Year, everyone.

#47 ::: Dave Harmon ::: (view all by) ::: January 03, 2013, 07:30 AM:

Avram #43, abi #46: Given that Open Threads are "stickier" than normal topics, and run until they "run out of room", I think you need a different metric for "heat" for those -- perhaps time from posting to when they pass 900 comments? (That covers cases where they lingered a while before being actually closed.)

Of course, that's not commensurable with the normal metric, but I'm not sure one formula can cover both types.

#48 ::: praisegod barebones ::: (view all by) ::: January 03, 2013, 04:50 PM:

I think I'd like to protest against any definition of top posts which includes posts that jave driven a significant number of people out of the commenting community. Jim's list contains at least one post which falls into that category. I'm not entirely sure that the same isn't true of Avram's list, though my memory's not so clear that I 'm confident of that.

#49 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: January 03, 2013, 07:28 PM:

I'd ask, but the label on the can says "WORMS."

#50 ::: Jeremy Leader ::: (view all by) ::: January 03, 2013, 07:38 PM:

Xopher @49: I was holding back from responding because I couldn't think of a good way to express exactly what you just said.

Except that as an old-time Usenet lurker, "top post" at first glance looks like a verb phrase to me (so "top posts" is the 3rd person singular conjugation), though Google's results for that phrase seem to include versions with and without hyphenation.

#51 ::: OtterB ::: (view all by) ::: January 03, 2013, 08:18 PM:

Release the measurement geeks!

There is, in my mind, a significant difference between posts that get a lot of quick responses, such as those that start some kind of word game (intentionally or not) or those with a string of condolences or congratulations, and posts that prompt longer and more deeply thoughtful replies. So one would want to consider a measure of average comment length. Or perhaps median length.

Likewise, posts that prompt poetry should get extra points. Though I do not know if it's possible to auto-recognize poetry for the purpose of identifying a comment as poetry or not.

I do realize that "top posts of 2012" is a way to look back over the year and discuss, not an absolute judgement. Just following a train of thought from the maxim that what you measure is what you get.

#52 ::: Avram ::: (view all by) ::: January 03, 2013, 09:56 PM:

There’s a reason I used phrases like “most comment-getting threads” and “top dozen comment-attractors” instead of “best”.

#53 ::: praisegod barebones ::: (view all by) ::: January 04, 2013, 12:51 PM:

Avram @ 52: it's a fair point. On the other hand, not everyone has been so cautious.

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