The Dame Walked In and Gave Me a Monologue Even Longer Than Her Dynamite Gams

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Adam Bernstein's obit of brass-knuckled crime writer Mickey Spillane includes this left-field info nugget.

Survivors include his third wife, Jane Rodgers Johnson, a former beauty queen 30 years his junior; and four children from the first marriage.

He also carried on a long epistolary flirtation with Ayn Rand, an admirer of his writing.

I just scanned Reason for some reference of this insanity, and all I found was a comment by "Jason" on a two-year old H&R thread.

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  1. Google has failed you, Dave. I posted on this very issue this morning in the Manliness thread.

    Someone simply must write a mash-up passage of Rand and Spillane having relations. While retaining both of their styles. I await the submissions.

  2. Wow. I just discovered that the argument I had with Ayn Randian last week was a re run of an argument I had two years ago.

  3. She mentions Spillane in Romantic Manifesto, as well as at length in several essays from The Ayn Rand Letter. Her aestetics fall apart somewhere between there and declaring Elliot Ness a moral absolutist.

    (I’m still of the opinion that Peikoff put the stake through most of Manifesto with fact and Value, but that’s off topic)

  4. Spillane was buddies with Jack Kirby as well, but somehow I don’t think that fact will devolve into the pissy thread that this one will in 5, 4, 3…

  5. Hey Mickey, I heard you had an epistolary flirtation with that Ayn Rand chick.

    Spillane: Naw, I never did that. I just wrote the broad some letters.

  6. Jason, all arguments with Randians are re-runs.
    Not only is there nothing original there, there has been more than enough time for all the major points to have been raised against that poseur.

    The problem is that so many randians are social metaphysicians of the worst sort — their own self-appraisal is intimately tied not to what people think of them, but what people think of their heroes. Odd, isn’t it? It seems unlikely that anyone with any genuine self respect could be a Randian.

    hugs,
    Shirley Knott

  7. Not only is this factoid accurate, but Rand argues in her book The Romantic Manifesto that Spillane is a better prose stylist than Thomas Wolfe-which is obviously true, but probably seemed pretty daring when she wrote that book. It makes you wonder why her own descriptive writing is so lousy. (I like Rand’s non-fiction, but her fiction is strictly from hunger.)

  8. And Shirley’s out of the gate with the first salvo! And it’s a good one too! Peppered with invective, and I think I see some corn lodged in there as well…

  9. her fiction is strictly from hunger

    I love you.

  10. Ah, Shirley’s back, making baseless assertions about Rand being an intellectual thief and poseur. You know, Shirley, I seem to remember a few days ago asking you for some proof of your mind-dump of a post (I believe you called Rand some decidedly nasty names, adding much to your argument).

    I like how we’re the social metaphysicians, and then in the same breath you assert that none of us could possible have genuine self-esteem! Who’s the one assuming reality from other people’s minds now?

  11. How to be a successful book reviewer:

    “DO NOT review any book about Ayn Rand. Even if you rave it, her gremlins will find something to go bananas about and write you a letter: ‘Dear Social Metaphysician! Examine your anti-Objectivist premises and you will see that your epistemology stinks!!!'”

    –Florence King in “National Review,” 3 Feb 1999, p. 64.

  12. Jennifer – Just because some people do that doesn’t mean you should paint us all with so wide a brush, and neither should King.

  13. I also want to mention that King’s criticism of individuals who are Objectivists or followers of Rand doesn’t really have any intellectual weight as it pertains to the ideas of said people or the philosophy as a whole. In short, it’s a cheap ad hominem that plays on old stereotypes.

  14. You just made the list, buddy.

  15. Jennifer – Just because some people do that doesn’t mean you should paint us all with so wide a brush, and neither should King.

    Oh, for fuck’s sake. Here, let me edit it:

    “DO NOT review any book about Ayn Rand. Even if you rave it, some of her gremlins will find something to go bananas about and write you a letter: ‘Dear Social Metaphysician! Examine your anti-Objectivist premises and you will see that your epistemology stinks!!!’ while others will not respond at all, and still others might say ‘Hmm, what a well-done and nicely balanced review. There will also be Ayn Rand fans who don’t read your review.

    Here’s a joke for y’all:

    Q. How many Ayn Rand fans does it take to change a light bulb?

    A. THAT’S NOT FUNNY DAMMIT!!! Some Ayn Rand fans might have problems with illumination, but that does NOT mean you should paint us all with so wide a brush!

  16. “”DO NOT review any book about Ayn Rand. Even if you rave it, her gremlins will find something to go bananas about and write you a letter: ‘Dear Social Metaphysician! Examine your anti-Objectivist premises and you will see that your epistemology stinks!!!'”

    –Florence King in “National Review,” 3 Feb 1999, p. 64.”

    I ? Florence King.
    In fact, after she retired and they gave the back page to Jonah Goldberg, I quit reading National Review.

  17. How do you make hearts, Mediageek?

  18. How do you make hearts, Mediageek?

    The same way he breaks them: one at a time.

  19. A. THAT’S NOT FUNNY DAMMIT!!! Some Ayn Rand fans might have problems with illumination, but that does NOT mean you should paint us all with so wide a brush!

    I like how my simple recommendation (that some of us Randians are reasonable folk who have senses of humor and aren’t all sycophants) was turned into me USING ALL CAPS AND USING TOO MUCH PUNCTUATION!!!!!!!!!!

    And who are the irrational critics again?

  20. And who are the irrational critics again?

    I dunno–how about “the Ayn Rand fans who keep taking things way too personally?”

    SOME MEDIOCRE COMEDIAN: So, like, what IS it with women and their tendency to buy so many shoes, anyway?

    JENNIFER: You take that back, you son of a bitch! I’m not one of those shoe-fetish bimbos and only a misogynist would say I am!

  21. Objectivists have no business defending thier philosophy against those who do not follow it. After all, they have deep-seated mental issues, are prone to frequent involuntary urination, and harbor deep-seated cravings for violent arserape.

    It is also clear that we need a thread that combines Rand, abortion, religion, and the dismal failings of western culture, so that we can give dem server squirrels a good workout.

  22. SOME MEDIOCRE COMEDIAN

    At least you’ve summed up your humor about Rand fans well.

  23. BOOKING AGENT: “Wow! That’s some act! So… what do you call it?”

    RANDIAN: “The Objectivists!”

  24. At least you’ve summed up your humor about Rand fans well.

    Remember, Ayn Randian: anytime anyone criticizes Ayn Rand, it’s really a personal attack against you and if you don’t start frothing in defense of her your dick will shrivel up and fall off.

    Yes, your manhood is that dependent on her.

  25. I think I’ve read the first five Mike Hammer novels. The first, _I, the Jury_, was fun, because it was so new and different (I hadn’t read any “noir” P.I. novels before) but the next two were sort of lame. The fourth, _One Lonely Night_, was actually a good novel, but the fifth was a return to lameness, so I stopped there. Isn’t _One Lonely Night_ the particular novel that Rand picked out as an example of good writing?

  26. I actually saw that happen to an Objectivist once. The memory of his anguished cries haunts me to this day.

  27. their own self-appraisal is intimately tied not to what people think of them, but what people think of their heroes

    People with self-esteem don’t care what others think of them or their heroes, Shirley. I’d guess they care even less about anything you have to say regarding Ayn Rand.

  28. People with self-esteem don’t care what others think of them or their heroes, Shirley. I’d guess they care even less about anything you have to say regarding Ayn Rand.

    And then they make 1,000 indignant posts demonstrating their lack of concern.

  29. Who’s frothing? I pointed out your humor is mediocre, your perception of Randians is wrong and your personal portrayal of me as some wild-eyed hysteric is completely off base, all without resorting to talking about genitalia falling off or misrepresenting your position.

    I still can’t understand why you think, as an Objectivist, I am automatically “frothing” when you’re the one with the hysterical tone.

  30. “And who are the irrational critics again?

    Comment by: Ayn_Randian at July 18, 2006 11:45 AM”

    ooh! ooh! ooh!

    I am! foam foam. sputter sputter! 🙂

    [pours third drink of the day]

    On a serious question:

    Are you a fan of “The Rational Review”? and besides “aynrand.org”, “capmag.com”, and “capitalism.org”, what are some sites you particularly enjoy and recommend? (guessing those are mainstays in your bookmarks)

    or: put it another way – there are a lot of people who don’t like Ayn Rand or Objectiveism – are there some applied articles out there on issues that analyze from a Randian perspective that can perhaps bridge the gap we’re seeing here?

    thanks much!
    VM

    p.s., Mitch: you and Chris Knight sure did a number on Prof. Hathaway’s house. That was awesome!

  31. The dame had set me up! She didn’t want me to solve the case at all! She just wanted a patsy to pin the crime on!

    I didn’t like the way this story was shaping up, so I decided to write a new ending with my .45 automatic as co-author. I introduced the dame to a friend who’s very close to my heart. Just a little down and left, to be specific.

    My friend is an eloquent speaker. He made three profound arguments while I excused myself from the room. I always leave when the talk gets philosophical.

  32. your personal portrayal of me as some wild-eyed hysteric is completely off base

    That’s right; it was entirely personal and meant to be taken literally. Whenever I criticize Ayn Rand my main motivation is to make you furious. (I can’t help myself; Objectivists are just so cute when they’re mad.)

    So how many friends do you call for help when you need to change a lightbulb, anyway? I generally have my boyfriend do it for me, because that’s easier than dragging out the stepladder.

  33. VM-

    I am here most of the time during the day. Other Objectivst sites I enjoy are solopassion.com and rebirthofreason.com. I enjoy non-Objectivist humor sites much better (I believe I have tim to thank for my daily addiction to thesuperficial.com)

    The rest of the time I spend reading Wikipedia…it’s a wonderful exemplar of how the truth doesn’t come from top down, but from the input and debate of thousands.

  34. “How do you make hearts, Mediageek?”

    Assuming you’re running a PC, point to Start -> Run

    In the dialogue box that pops up, type Charmap

    This will bring up a little utility that displays all of the glyphs for a particular font. Scroll through the list, and pick the one you need.

  35. “The same way he breaks them: one at a time.”

    He speaks the truth.

  36. Type ♥

    Thus, ?.

    Here’s an ASCII Character Code Chart. You can find more by googling “HTML symbols”.

  37. Emoticons are bad enough, pleeeeeease let’s not usher in a new age of quaint ASCII characters.

  38. PL- Have always wondered what the ASCII or Unicode keyboard command is. I know that ? is alt+0233 (Hold down alt, and type 0233 on the numberpad.)

    The ones that I use fairly often I’ve got memorized, but I’d be surprised if that amounts to more than half a dozen.

  39. Jeff P., it’s not just about little symbols. It’s also about accents, umlauts, and trademark symbols. Not to mention Greek letters, which are cool. And math. . .can’t very well do math without the notation!

    Here’s a personalized one for you: J?ff P.

    Furthermore, ?, 10?, C?sar.

  40. I’ve always felt that the reckless misuse of umlauts lessens us as a species…

  41. Deatht?ngue!

  42. I swear by my life, and by my love of it, that Shirley and Jennifer are cunts.

  43. Wh?, wh?t?v?r d? y?? m??n, J?ff?

  44. Thanks, Randy Randian!

    (Mediageek – that name is not appropriate for a family-friendly band. Change the name. Billy and the Boingers, for example)

    🙂

  45. U-Stink-But-I-?-U

  46. My Spanish class required regular accent marks, so I ended up memorizing all of those. For ?, alt+130 is easier. For most of the important letters (accented and umlauted vowels, for instance) there’s always a three-number code apart from the four-number code. Here’s a page with some more.

  47. Oh, why Simone Weil can’t arouse the same passion than Ayn Rand? Both were women, both were Jews, both were philosophers…

    But no one goes bonkers over Simone Weil…

  48. No, Howard; Shirley and I merely have cunts. And if you had occasional access to one as well, maybe you wouldn’t be so uptight.

  49. It’s not too surprising that Spillane and Rand got along. His politics were far to the right, particularly in comparison to, say, Hammett and Chandler (Jim Thompson wasn’t recognized until much later).

    More than that, excepting Walter Gibson, Spillane was just about the ultimate workingman author, pumping out a ridiculous number of words for years after hitting age 15 or so (then pretty much hanging it up after Hammer, not doing any books for a decade.) A few others matched his pace, but they were usually on speed or something and burned out quick.

    However, the part that nobody’s explained: after Hammer Spillane becomes, not only a Christian, but like a Jehovah’s Witness. He pitched light beer all those years ‘cuz working men could drink it watching football without beating their wives afterwards.

    Probably the only Witness Rand corresponded with regularly. I guess he never tried to convert her, though.

    /I the Jury rulz.

  50. The opening scene of One Lonely Night really resonates — it’s hard to read that and not experience the same loneliness and frustration that Mike Hammer is feeling.

    Unless I’m getting my books mixed up, it also has a great ending, with him going off to rescue Velma from the Communists with just war paint and a Tommy gun.

  51. 1. Great headline for this post.

    2.
    “How do you make hearts, Mediageek?”

    “The same way he breaks them: one at a time.”

    AC, that made me break into peals of giddy, unmanly laughter, right here in the office. Durn you.

    3. Howard Galt: Once in a while, someone flings a comment in Jennifer’s direction that I feel is over the line. As a friend, I get this quaint chivalrous impulse to say something in her defense. Then I scroll down a bit, and there’s nothing left of the miscreant but a smoking corpse. I have learned to just stay out of the way. Take a lesson.

  52. And then they make 1,000 indignant posts demonstrating their lack of concern

    Defending something that I value is worth it…I note that you make just as many to refute us.

  53. Oh, chillax, Jennifer, I was just joking, ya cunt.

  54. Defending something that I value is worth it…I note that you make just as many to refute us.

    Yes, but once again you miss the point that your insistence on taking any Rand criticism personally is as inane as me being offended by a guy who jokes about women’s shoe-buying habits. I don’t feel the need to run around making sure every man I see knows that I’m not like that, and I’m damned sure not going to make 1,000 posts pointing out that I’m not like that but I really don’t care if you think I am but I’m not like that but who cares if you think I am?

  55. I ? blog drama. ?

  56. John Roark is an unmannered lopdick.

  57. I am not one of those shoe women. Stop thinking I’m one of those shoe women! Not that it matters–I don’t care what you think. But I’m totally not one of those shoe women.

    Let me repeat: I do not give a damn about shoes and I loathe those stupid bigots who think I do just because I’m a woman. Not that I care about them, though; really, these people are far beneath my radar I scarcely notice them.

    Stop thinking I like shoes!

    Not that I care what you think.

    Stop joking about women who like shoes! It totally doesn’t apply to me. But hell, do what you want–no skin off my nose.

  58. Hey! WTF. My ASCII illustrations didn’t work. I think I need a new computer. Better go tell the boss. ?

  59. smacky,

    Eschew ASCII. Use HTML codes. What were you trying to do, anyway?

  60. Jennifer,
    So, umm, what kind of shoes do you not like?

  61. Jason Fager,

    Yeah, you correctly recall the final scene of _One Lonely Night_. An unforgettable literary depiction of cathartic violence. I wish Spillane had been able to maintain that high level of writing.

  62. I still don’t care what any of you think about my shoe collection or lack thereof. Believe what you want! So what? It’s not like I’m going to lose any sleep over it. It totally doesn’t matter to me at all, if you think I like shoes just because I’m a woman.

    Really.

  63. Pro Lib,

    I was trying to use a heart icon and a little black smiley face. I used mediageeks suggestion (the charmap), but it just came out like gobbeldygook.

    FWIW, in college I used to go over all of my Ancient Greek papers and write in all of the little accents by hand.

  64. I ? blog drama. ?

  65. Thanks, PL! 🙂

  66. I’ve never bothered to look at all of the expanded character sets for HTML, but there are some fun ones. Here’s my rendering of Leonardo da Vinci’s St. John the Baptist:

    ??

    And here’s La Gioconda:

    ?

    Distressingly, there’s ? but no cool libertarian symbols. However, an old, old Christian symbol made the cut: ?.

    Finally, for those who want to avoid Carousel: ?.

  67. Jennifer, all I am saying is that Objectivism is a philosophical system, and your superficial critiques about what you think some Objectivists are like are not only untrue but also ridiculous. I am sad to see that you really don’t have a set of principles you care about; if you did you wouldn’t equate a way of living life with a comedian mocking women’s shoe habits, and you would realize that in ridiculing (poorly, I might add) someone’s bedrock principles you may just raise that person’s ire.

    FWIW, I loathe “observational comedians” who make lame and stereotypical jokes about men and women…it’s the same sort of prejudice that made it OK to mock blacks and Jews in the years past.

  68. I think the editors here insert an Ayn Rand story whenever things are slow or they’re feeling a bit sadistic. Pull the strings and watch the puppets dance!

  69. Ayn Randian, the fact that you get all huffy about a joke in the same thread where you insist you are not humorless is beautifully ironic. But since a Florence King quote started this, I’ll give another Florence King quote here, from an article decrying the decline of wit in America.

    Our worst nightmare is that backbone of wit, the generalization. Samuel Johnson’s quip, “If you give a Scot something, he’ll either break it or drink it,” would cause mass cardiac arrest in the land of the free and the home of Jimmy the Greek. Jesse Jackson and Ted Kennedy would go on Nightline and wail, “SOME Scots are clumsy drunks but the vast majority of Scottish-Americans are well educated and responsible citizens.”

  70. smacky, use ☺ for the regular smiley face (?), ☻
    for the black smiley face (?), and ♥ for the heart symbol (?).

    All you do is type the characters I used above (I faked it so you could see the code instead of the symbol) in the box, then post. You can check to make sure it worked in the preview mode, too.

  71. the fact that you get all huffy about a joke in the same thread where you insist you are not humorless is beautifully ironic

    Not when you take into consideration the fact you’re not funny. And if anything, that would make me guilty of hypocrisy, or doublespeak…but ironic? I don’t get the usage here.

  72. smacky, use ? for the regular smiley face (?), ?
    for the black smiley face (?)

    Oh, so “regular” as opposed to “black”? Are you some kind of racist? That’s it, I’m cansilling my subskription.

  73. SMACKY is Juanita?!?

    Smacky!!! How could you?

    take into consideration the fact you’re not funny

    But you are, AR. Especially when you get all huffy and self-contradictory like this.

  74. smacky,

    Funny you should say that, because I was thinking it was arguably racist to have the standard smiley face (is that better?) in blackface. That’s just wrong.

    Look–gettin’ in the hot tub is a symbol! ?

  75. I’m not dead, I’m just being held hostage by some Objectivist heretics.

    Here’s my favorite symbol: ? .

  76. SMACKY is Juanita?!?

    Ha! I wish. It must take years to perfect that level of trolling. I was just borrowing the handle temporarily, since I couldn’t rightfully post such an offended comment under my own handle. Thanks, Juanita. You can have your handle back now. I hope I haven’t breached some sort of unspoken troll code of law.

  77. I don’t get the usage here.

    There’s a lot you’re not getting here. But seriously: if Ayn Rand is as fabulous as you say, her fabulousness will be evident to all despite my and Florence King’s comments, so there’s no need for you to get so ridiculously defensive. If she’s not as fabulous as you say, then there’s even less reason for you to get so defensive.

    Seriously: either stop taking it so personally, or for fuck’s sake at least admit you’re taking it personally. A lot of people find a lot of unintended humor in Ayn Rand, and your infuriated insistence that there’s nothing funny or mock-worthy about her is just like King’s Jesse Jackson bleating “SOME Scots are clumsy drunks, but the majority are educated and responsible citizens” with a perfectly straight face.

  78. Oh, crap, I have to go to a meeting. I’l be gone for quite awhile, but I promise to check this thread later and see what other faults I possess.

    Smacky, I wish I could believe you. I really do.

  79. Smacky, I wish I could believe you. I really do.

    I assure you, Jennifer, it is not I. But I am flattered that you think it was me…that means my mimicry skills are improving. That is important if I am ever going to be a successful troll in the blogosphere.

  80. Jennifer, your principal fault is a wicked underestimation of the sexiness of women in the shower. Truly a criminal offense.

    As for Ms. Rand, I’ve always liked her books and think she had some interesting and important things to say. She certainly appears to have been a major influence on people across the political spectrum, too.

    Still. . .she was a bit odd. Her sexual ideas were just freaky and needlessly interwoven into her novels, her philosophical analyses lacked rigor, and she tended to oversimplify issues. But the worst thing about her are some of her followers. Many Objectivists treat Rand and her writings as Holy Writ and are batshit crazy about the whole movement. Incidentally, I’m not really saying that about anyone who posts here, and I’m prepared to acknowledge that there are plenty of Objectivists who aren’t crazy at all.

  81. Here’s a joke for y’all:

    Q. How many Ayn Rand fans does it take to change a light bulb?

    A. THAT’S NOT FUNNY DAMMIT!!! Some Ayn Rand fans might have problems with illumination, but that does NOT mean you should paint us all with so wide a brush!

    Don’t quit your day job, Jennifer.

  82. STOP BANTERING ABOUT THE TERM OBJECTIVIST!
    There are no Objectivists left in the world. As Rand proclaimed that only she had the right to deem someone worthy of that title. It seems that she bestowed that honor on four others besides herself. The Brandens, Nathaniel and Barbara were ex-communicated. Frank O’Conner is dead and so is Rand. And that leaves syncophant Piekoff who by supporting John Kerry has left his status as an Objectivist and Rand’s intellectual heir as nothing but a laughable legality.

    According to Rand, the proper term for any lessor light who wishes to attempt to live his or her life in a manner that Rand would consider moral is “Student of Objectivism.”

    It is obvious that anyone who wishes to honor Rand would respect her decree.

    It is also obvious that anyone who wants to point out her hubris and generally make fun of her would do the same.

  83. I think the editors here insert an Ayn Rand story whenever things are slow or they’re feeling a bit sadistic. Pull the strings and watch the puppets dance!

    That is the problem with ‘Reason magazine’ and Libertarians in general. It seems they don’t want solutions to problems or even trade offs, but, instead, create policies or views that will simply get them and their readers off. The magazine should not be called ‘Reason’; however, it should not be called orgasm either because I doubt they leave a mess. I got the perfect title for the magazine — ‘FRISSION’!

  84. Do you mean, frisson? As in “a moment of intense excitement”? That seems a bit much, though it would be an excellent name for an April Fool’s issue. Frisson Magazine: Free behinds and free strumpets.

  85. Testing: ?

  86. Q. How many Objectivists does it take the change a lightbulb?

    A. None. John Galt just invented a lightbulb that will never burn out.

    Q. Why did Ayn Rand cross the road?

    A. Because she chose to.

    Ayn Rand: Knock, Knock.
    Jennifer: Who’s there?
    Ayn Rand: I.
    Jennifer: I who?
    Ayn Rand: Exactly. Let me show you something I wrote…

    Back on topic, Rest In Peace, Mickey Spillane. I enjoyed I, the Jury very much and could see how he either pioneered or at least played a major role in crafting the much-beloved old school gumshoe archetype. Respek.

  87. Testing: &#9787

    (I want to see if this comes out racist. The blackface smiley does look kind of minstrelsy.)

  88. “Lawsy, lawsy, lawsy! This place sho’ gone crazy!” &#9787

  89. Do you mean, frisson? As in “a moment of intense excitement”? That seems a bit much, though it would be an excellent name for an April Fool’s issue. Frisson Magazine: Free behinds and free strumpets.

    I was thinking more along the lines of something like “Frisson Magazine,” if it feels good — write it. But I like yours, too.

  90. Excellent, Grasshopper. When you can snatch this symbol ? from my hands, you will be ready to leave the Village.

    Check out this Character Entity Html Reference for some of the more unusual characters.

  91. Ok, there must be something wrong with my computer. Most of the characters in this thread just show up on my screen as a little rectangle. Like this:

    I don’t think I can even see half of the characters that people posted in this thread…I guess that explains my confusion at everyone’s comments.

  92. Smacky?

    It’s not the characters people post here that are the cause of confusion; it’s the characters who post here! 🙂

  93. Smacky,
    That last one showed up as a question mark in a diamond. I suspect that your computer’s browser is not correctly translating the extended character set. May I recommend pestering your boss for an upgrade.

  94. Stop joking about women who like shoes! It totally doesn’t apply to me. But hell, do what you want–no skin off my nose

    .. Jennifer, you totally missed the opportunity to say, “No skin off my toes

    .. it occurs to me that I am the most Objectivist person that I know .. not that it means anything, just figure I should be holding up my end or something ..

    (crickets)

    .. Hobbit

  95. Jennifer, your principal fault is a wicked underestimation of the sexiness of women in the shower. Truly a criminal offense.

    Dammit, ProLib, I made the initial “shower” comment in hopes of deflating a false legend, not inspiring one.

    I actually just looked up the thread and read it, and I think I see the misunderstanding here–you guys were all saying “I know a showering woman is sexy because I’ve showered with my girlfriend before.”

    This proves nothing. The mindset “I’m here with a naked man” is very different from the mindset “I’m here alone and need to assume some ungainly positions so I can clean between my toes.” So while I’m certainly not apologizing to any offended Ayn Rand fans, I will extend an olive branch here to those of you stuck in the shower-fantasy bubble.

    The branch can pop the bubble, see, and then you’ll all at last be free.

  96. We now have showering peace. I’m confident that when the Jews and Arabs learn that women can be hot while in the shower, they will cease their incessant warfare and, um, shower together.

    smacky, I have a question. Are you seeing the characters that I’ve been posting? Or are you getting the Diamond of Querying? Not every browser can pick up the extended character set, so that could be the problem. However, several of the posters around here have been using ASCII symbols without converting them to HTML code. That often fails to work.

  97. Are any of you here Sloan fans? Arguments with Objectivists always remind me of their lyric from “Coax Me”:

    “It’s not the band I hate; it’s their fans.”

  98. Mickey Spillane…dead?! Aw hell! I grew up reading his books – begining at the age of thirteen with “The Deep.” I read all of his books – or all of them I could discover – several times over by the time I reached my twenties. They and Ian Flemming’s James Bond novels provided me many hours of escapist entertainment, long before I had ever even heard of Ayn Rand.

    Even by the early 1960’s his stuff was still considered pretty racey and certainly not something a seventh or eighth-grader should be reading. I remember that once, in eighth grade English class, we were divided into groups of four or five students; each group was to choose one member to stand up and give an impromptu, oral book report to the rest of the class – right then and there. Apparently I was either the only one in my group that had lately read a book or the only one stupid enough to mention that he had – or both. In any event I was “nominated.” To this day I remember the look of panic on the teacher’s face when I stood and announced to her that the book I would report on was “The Deep” by Mickey Spillane! I remember, also, her look of relief when I had managed to finish without mentioning any sex scenes from the novel. They didn’t pay teachers enough back then, either. 🙂

    No, the critics didn’t care much for Spillane’s work and probably even less so after Ayn Rand announced that she liked his stuff. Certainly the English teachers did not approve of his writing. I’m not sure what the measure of a great author is, but I do know that he was read – by millions of people – and not because his books were made part of some curriculum, either. He brought enjoyment to many people; he was a great story-teller. Thanks, Mickey.

  99. Love or loathe Rand, but you can’t deny she’s had an enormous influence on libertarians or libertarianish people and free marketeers in general. So, I don’t think it’s just a way to get people riled up to bring her up from time to time.

  100. You know, that’s the symbol for the astrological sign, Cancer, not what you bad, bad people think it is.

    Ooh, pirate symbols: ?. How Tampanian. Practically Gasparillish.

  101. Jennifer,
    I’m sure that most men here are like me and for those men who are, I say “We don’t want our bubble to burst. Keep on showering. Uh, unless that is, you desire help in toweling off.”

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