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  1. #1
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    Here is where we ask random questions...

    Didn’t know where to ask this question since it’s not just about movies or just about comics or just about books or whatever. So... I decided to start a “random questions” thread here.

    Just finished watching SpiderMan 3, and in case you’re wondering... it’s still pretty bad for the most part. One thing it did get *almost right was the love of Peter Parker and MJ Watson. That got me wondering... what’s the greatest (fictional) love story of all time? I think I’ve narrowed it down to four possibilities.

    1) Peter/MJ
    2) Rocky/Adrian
    3) Anakin/Padme
    4) Romeo/Juliet

    Discuss if you want, and then feel free to ask a new (random) question about whatever. Or let this thread die a horrible death. Either/or. I’m drunk and will probably forget I even started this thread come tomorrow.

  2. #2
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    Peter and MJ have such a tortured continuity that I'm not sure how to judge them. 3 and 4 end in grisly death so I'm gonna knock them off the list. Rocky and Adrian would be the best of the bunch, I think.

    The right answer is Carl and Ellie from the opening of Up.

  3. #3
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    Simba and Nala.
    Billy and Chuck.
    Bert and Ernie.

  4. #4
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    Nony comes through yet
    again. Inspired choices these are.
    Sorry. Wrong damn thread.

  5. #5
    Feeling Minnesota Powder's Avatar
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    Jack and Rose...

    Harry and Sally

    Ross and Rachel

    Zach and Kelly

    Fred and Wilma/Betty and Barney

    JD and Turk

  6. #6
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    So... when I originally thought this thread was a good idea, I was hoping for other random questions from you guys; not just answers to the original questions. If there’s any random stuff you guys are wanting to ask that don’t necessarily fit into other threads, feel free to ask them here.

  7. #7
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    Bringing this back, and hopefully it goes better this time...

    So, I’m eating taquitos and salsa for dinner, and it got me wondering... do Brits eat tacos and salsa and other Tex-mex kind of stuff?

  8. #8
    Senior Member Gooner's Avatar
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    We do, but I would guess usually as a treat or to have something different. I make my own fajitas and nachos, but any other Mexican cuisine I would usually go out for it. We have a chain of restaurants called Chiquitos that does some decent Mexican food. But I'd say Italian, Chinese, Indian, Thai among others are more popular cuisines.

    EDIT: to keep this random question going, where's the best place to go partying in US?
    Last edited by Gooner; 11-09-2018 at 08:34 AM.


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  9. #9
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    It really depends on what you’re looking for, but typically Miami, Las Vegas, New Orleans and Los Angeles are big party cities, and I’m assuming NYC, but haven’t been there.

    Also, Saturdays are big party nights in college towns where there’s big football programs.

  10. #10
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    I've got a random question... I know that in the states education is more local than federal and it will have been different for everyone. But how did your school structure work? Like, at what age did you do various standardised tests, what age did you move from one school to another, all that kinda shit.

    And not just for the Americans too I guess, what is it like in your part of the world? Interested in comparing this to the British experience.

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  11. #11
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    There’s a federal education department that pretty much disperses funds to the states, and at the point, the states spend the money as they see fit.

    As far as how it’s broken up, it depends on the size of the city/town/whatever. Like, smaller rural communities with a lower population is probably going to be different then schools in NYC.

    Nashville, for instance, is broken down K-4th grades (typically referred to as “elementary”) in one school. And you might have three schools with that age kids filter into “middle school”, which is 5th-8th grades. Then you’ll have maybe three middle schools filter into one high school, which 9th-12th grades.

    As far as standardized testing, each state is responsible for developing and administering their own version. The only federalized standard testing is the ACT and SAT, and those are used for college admissions. In Tennessee, standardized testing starts at the very beginning in Kindegarten and is an annual thing. Although, when I was in high school in the late 90s, standardized testing was only required for 9th grade once you reached high school, unless you did extremely poorly, and then you were required to do it each year until you reached an acceptable score. That may or may not have changed, though.

  12. #12
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    Good info, thanks!

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  13. #13
    What is the first news story you can remember?

    Fall of the Berlin Wall is mine

  14. #14
    Senior Member Gooner's Avatar
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    Unfortunately it is 9/11. Watched the second plane go in live on CNN.


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    9/11 was weird. I didn’t wake up until around 10:00 (central time) that morning. As I was out running some errands, I was scanning through the radio stations, and after about ten minutes of not finding a single song, I was like “WTF is going on?” I finally settled on a station and actually listened to what was going on, and was like “Oh... shit.”

    For me, the first news story I remember was the Exxon Valdez oil spill.

  16. #16
    Senior Member Gooner's Avatar
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    Yeah, it was very surreal, even as a British person myself, so I can't imagine how it must have felt for Americans or New Yorkers. Obviously there were the London bombings later on, but for sheer chaos 9/11 was devastating.

    Weirdly enough, I was preparing to go to a football game that day. I was living in Mallorca, Spain at the time and it was the first time ever that my beloved Arsenal were going to play Mallorca in European competition, so naturally I got a T-shirt commemorating it. And as you can imagine, it had the date on it. Never worn the shirt since (I was 11, but I actually got it 2/3 sizes bigger soi I could theoretically wear it later on in life...)


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  17. #17
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    It's another one that isn't much fun to have as a first memory but I'd say the furthest back I can really recall as a news thing would be the war in the Balkans in the early 1990s.

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  18. #18
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    the 1984 US Presidential election (makes my pretty old around these parts) is mine. I remember my parents disliking Ronald Reagan so much, and feeling strongly about his opponent, Walter Mondale, who got shitwhipped in the election.

    As far as 9/11 goes, I was woken up that morning, while living in Brooklyn Heights right across the water from the Towers, to a phone call and looking out my window and seeing the hole in the first Tower. Really, really surreal. Went to class (law school, 1L at the time) and had students in class reporting in real time what was happening, they were tracking on their laptops. **Sidenote, this is the first time I remember internet in class being a thing** We were told that the second Tower had been struck, the first Tower had fallen, and then an administrator for the school came into our class to tell us that we were shut down until further notice - the school was among some federal courthouses and the like, so it made sense for us to get shut down. I grabbed a buddy who lived way uptown Manhattan and would not be able to get home any time soon due to subway shutdowns etc...we went up to the roof of my building and got a few six packs and drank and mourned the loss of a NY fixture and something that had represented NY for so long. That might sound melodramatic, but as a born and raised NYer I felt impervious to everything until that day and then it was all taken away from me.

  19. #19
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    Completely off topic but what was it/is it like in the army?? I kind of wish I'd joined when I was younger instead of just wasting my life away. You can do nearly anything in the army and you learn loads of valuable skills.
    “There he goes. One of God's own prototypes. A high-powered mutant of some kind never even considered for mass production. Too weird to live, and too rare to die.”

  20. #20
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    If PT would be willing to move this to the random questions thread, I’d be more than happy to answer it there. Don’t think we need any more details in this thread.

    Thanks PT for moving this...


    The army is... a complete change of life. At least it was for me. Some guys come in and do a "3 and done" and then go back to their shitty lives. I was a punk-ass 19 year old kid when I joined. Thought I had the world figured out. I was more actually more interested in dropping acid and X and partying at the time then I was about defending my country. However, I had a new wife and a 6 week old baby I needed to provide for. And... that's the only reason I joined... to provide for my family.

    Basic training was more mental than physical. Supposedly, the drill sergeants went through psychological classes on how to break people down. (Don't know if that's true or not... just what I heard.) Once you realize it's just a mindgame, though... basic became easy.

    My first duty station was awesome. Washington State. I was surrounded by a bunch of cool dudes, and we all became great friends rather quickly. Which... worked out when we all got deployed about 6 months later. For once... the movies are true. You bond with your squad. Doesn't always mean you're best friends, though. Tons of fights that year we were deployed. But... you get over it eventually.

    The best thing about the army is the people you meet and the things you see. While I've met plenty of assholes along the way and seen more death than I'd like to admit... the cool kids are fucking awesome, and I've seen some of the most beautiful sights ever. The sunrises and sunsets in Iraq are like something out of a painting. I've told more jokes and laughed harder than I ever have with my old buddies as opposed to my civilian friends. I still keep in touch with those old army buddies even now.

    I did 16 years total. Other than the last 3-4 years, those were the greatest days of my life. I'll always cherish my memories... no matter how good or bad. I spent half of my life in the military... it is what I am today because of it.
    Last edited by meandi; 02-11-2019 at 11:28 PM.

  21. #21
    Toubabo Koomi The Dude's Avatar
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    Sorry I didn't reply to this before.

    That's kinda how I imagined it, if you survive, you've learnt a lot and gained friends etc.

    I'm only 5'4 so even if I'd wanted to join the army for real (which I was considering when I was 16), I don't think they'd let me in.

    Did you see real combat and everything? Unless I was armed with a machine gun myself that would scare the shitt outta me but to be honest I've seen some pretty scary shit just dealing with drunks and drug heads combined with mental health issues... but I haven't learnt shit worth a damn and have no discipline at all so it's all a bit crap.

    Even if I had joined somehow, and been shot and killed, I think I'd prefer that to, well, virtually nothing.
    “There he goes. One of God's own prototypes. A high-powered mutant of some kind never even considered for mass production. Too weird to live, and too rare to die.”

  22. #22
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    If I remember correctly, you're either an Aussie or a Brit... and while I can't comment on either of those armies (although I've encountered both along the way... always as an ally...), I can say the American army wouldn't necessarily disqualify you just because of your height. (We have tons of females under 5'4"...)

    Yes, I've seen "real combat" as you put it. Was doing convoy security in Iraq back in '03, maybe '04... roadside bomb (what we call an IED) went off while pulling security for a civilian group of truckers hauling fuel from Balad to Fallujah. I was the driver, and my role was to get out us out of the "kill zone". Looked right and saw the guy riding shotgun and the guy behind him in the backseat shooting. The "pink mist" is a real thing. Only encounter I had overseas. (New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina was a completely different story, though. Got shot at more in the states and had to pull my weapon more than I did in two years in Iraq. That fucks me up more than Iraq, tbh.)

    Most of us that have been in agree with your last comment... better to have seen the shit and died fighting for others than living a nothing life. Some people even wanted to die out there. Some kind of "right of passage to Valhalla" or some shit. I've got obligations here in the states, though, so my mentality was "Do my job... go home to what's important. If you die, at least you die with honor." And... I did my job, I survived, and I got out a year ago, and now I can focus on my responsibilities here.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by BK-097 View Post
    the 1984 US Presidential election (makes my pretty old around these parts) is mine. I remember my parents disliking Ronald Reagan so much, and feeling strongly about his opponent, Walter Mondale, who got shitwhipped in the election.

    As far as 9/11 goes, I was woken up that morning, while living in Brooklyn Heights right across the water from the Towers, to a phone call and looking out my window and seeing the hole in the first Tower. Really, really surreal. Went to class (law school, 1L at the time) and had students in class reporting in real time what was happening, they were tracking on their laptops. **Sidenote, this is the first time I remember internet in class being a thing** We were told that the second Tower had been struck, the first Tower had fallen, and then an administrator for the school came into our class to tell us that we were shut down until further notice - the school was among some federal courthouses and the like, so it made sense for us to get shut down. I grabbed a buddy who lived way uptown Manhattan and would not be able to get home any time soon due to subway shutdowns etc...we went up to the roof of my building and got a few six packs and drank and mourned the loss of a NY fixture and something that had represented NY for so long. That might sound melodramatic, but as a born and raised NYer I felt impervious to everything until that day and then it was all taken away from me.

    This sounds so surreal to me. Like, back in 2010, Nashville had some bad flooding. And it shut the city down for like, two days, yeah? But reading about a first hand account like this baffles me. (And I was in the French Quarter when Hurricane Katrina came through...) What baffles me about NYC and the towers is... my kids are now in high school, and they're reading about this in text books. (Or having to look it up on the internet... whatevs) The fact that there is a major American moment that we as adults were alive for, but my kids have to research it blows my fucking mind. Almost makes me want to go back and research what I missed during the 80s.

  24. #24
    Toubabo Koomi The Dude's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by meandi View Post
    If I remember correctly, you're either an Aussie or a Brit... and while I can't comment on either of those armies (although I've encountered both along the way... always as an ally...), I can say the American army wouldn't necessarily disqualify you just because of your height. (We have tons of females under 5'4"...)

    Yes, I've seen "real combat" as you put it. Was doing convoy security in Iraq back in '03, maybe '04... roadside bomb (what we call an IED) went off while pulling security for a civilian group of truckers hauling fuel from Balad to Fallujah. I was the driver, and my role was to get out us out of the "kill zone". Looked right and saw the guy riding shotgun and the guy behind him in the backseat shooting. The "pink mist" is a real thing. Only encounter I had overseas. (New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina was a completely different story, though. Got shot at more in the states and had to pull my weapon more than I did in two years in Iraq. That fucks me up more than Iraq, tbh.)

    Most of us that have been in agree with your last comment... better to have seen the shit and died fighting for others than living a nothing life. Some people even wanted to die out there. Some kind of "right of passage to Valhalla" or some shit. I've got obligations here in the states, though, so my mentality was "Do my job... go home to what's important. If you die, at least you die with honor." And... I did my job, I survived, and I got out a year ago, and now I can focus on my responsibilities here.
    Well, I'm glad you made it back in one piece for your family and also because you're a cool poster.

    Yes, I am a brit. Not sure if I like that or not, but it's the fact of life. Anyway, I think they changed the rules not all that long ago. I think it was around 2005/6 I was considering the army. If I'd done it before being diagnosed with mental health problems my life could be a whole lot better... Or I could be dead, not sure if I'd mind too much unless I went to hell. That's why suicide is never a serious thought for me. I'm not super religious but if there IS a hell I'm 100% sure I don't want to go there and suicide is a one way ticket straight there for altering God's plan.
    “There he goes. One of God's own prototypes. A high-powered mutant of some kind never even considered for mass production. Too weird to live, and too rare to die.”

  25. #25
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    Today is the start of March Madness. Question to anyone outside of the US... is college athletics as big a thing in your country as it is here? To give you an idea of how popular it is... I’ll watch a third rate college football or basketball game more often than I’ll watch a marquee pro game.

  26. #26
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    Nowhere near here. BUCS has it's fans and there's a couple of universities that compete near the top of some sports (mostly minor ones), but still, nowhere near.

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  27. #27
    Senior Member Gooner's Avatar
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    I played in BUCS in Badminton. Got to the last 64. In the final there was probably 100 spectators at best.

    I think Rugby probably gets the biggest crowds in BUCS, which is likely to be no more than a couple of thousand spectators. If you're at Uni and you're any good at the sport your playing, you'll already playing professionally, so they tend to skip BUCS competitions.

    Must admit, I love the importance the college sports get in USA, but I don't quite understand the phenomenon. By that I mean why do some people prefer the college sports instead of the pros? Is it down to the money involved in the pro game, which admittedly feels detached from the real world?
    Last edited by Gooner; 03-22-2019 at 05:35 AM.


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  28. #28
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    Oh, forgot to include the one exception to that: the Oxford vs Cambridge boat race, that is televised nationally and people who've no connection to either University watch (including myself). But even though I watch it, I'm at a loss to explain why it's popular.

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  29. #29
    Senior Member Gooner's Avatar
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    Tradition more than anything? It's been going on for well over 100 years and probably pre-dates any form of college sporting contest?

    Plus it has a TV deal. That alone brings eyeballs to the event.

    Now that you mention it though, I'm at a loss as to why even I watch it! Was always on TV growing up and I guess it's just stuck.
    Last edited by Gooner; 03-22-2019 at 07:09 AM.


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  30. #30
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    Oh yeah, it has to be tradition. But even so, I'm not sure that makes enough sense as a reason for me. I would totally get it if people connected to the two universities watched it out of tradition, and if the rowing community watched it for the same reason. But it's got millions of people watching it, and plenty of them lining the banks of the river. It's really bizarre, if you think about it.

    But yeah, I do think that it being the oldest continuing sporting tradition (except a few horse races I think) is at the heart of it, and that's why I watch. Though I'm struck even then that's it's not much of a reason in itself to care.

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  31. #31
    Up North, our own university sports aren't that popular (but truly, it depends on the sport and the region), but people will follow closely March Madness. Like bars will show the games and people will spend many hours there! Since the country is SO big, USports are separated in three : Canada West, Ontario/Quebec and Atlantic provinces. Each league crowns it's own champions in every sport, and we get an all-star tournament between the champions. Some leagues are stronger than others in certain sports.

    As for our University sports, the biggest teams draw quite a lot of people, and special rivalry games too. ULaval draws a lot for Football, but it's pretty much their only sport. Carleton University (Ontario) is the most decorated champion in men BasketBall since the turning of the century but they will never draw thousands of fans. Even if we are supposedly a hockey country, University hockey gets TWO days of exposure per year, on national TV. It's still the most underrated league in the country...

    I can talk more about hockey because it's the one that I follow, but USports hockey is now being considered more as an option rather than a last-resort option. In the last few years, we got more and more players sign pro contracts after the end of their USports career, either in AHL or ECHL (ECHL --> AHL --> NHL to make it simple). One guy, this year, signed directly with the Calgary Flames... Players continue to develop and can move on anywhere. More and more players are going to Europe after their career here, most in France, some in the UK, some in Italy or Germany. They are playing in the best leagues of these countries, getting paid and travelling. Honestly, it's not a bad life for a few years before they come back to settle down and start a family.

    But in the end, most USports games are played in front of 500 people or less (in hockey, there is one team that draws a few thousands per game).

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