Got a problem getting "Editor's Picks"? Been flambéed by an anonymous member? The Open Salon Action Reporter is here to help!
Dear Open Salon Action Reporter:
Recently an OS guy or gal with a made-up user name and a Bette Davis icon called me an "insufferable petit bourgeois twit" in a comment. I don't speak French--is that a compliment or an insult?
George Downing, Green Ridge MO.
It depends. On the one hand, the petit bourgeois are the small business people whose stores line the Main Streets of America and create jobs on which our high standard of living depends. On the other hand, the term is also used to sum up a narrow-minded, insular, priggish world view. You are free to take the comment either way.
Mr./Ms. OS Action Reporter:
A certain member whom I will not identify other than to say that his user name is "Nebraska Barbarian" recently called my manhood into question just because I posted a poem entitled "To a Waving Field of Grain." Here is what he said: "okay poetry boy you like grain so much why dont you try rding (sic) a combine for 18 hours a day harvesting winter wheat I bet you woulnd't (sic) have any filbert nuts left when you got thro (sic) ha ha. Write a poem about that why dont you?"
I went to Nebraska Barbarian's profile and he lists "The Little Prince" by Antoine de Saint-Exupery as his favorite book. I would really like to drill the Barbarian a new bodily orifice, but that's my favorite book too! Help!
Vincent Cassing, Ph.D., Adjunct Professor of Comparative Literature, University of Iowa-Keokuk.
Dear Professor Cassing:
The wonderful thing about Open Salon is that we meet people with common interests whom we might otherwise never encounter unless we wandered into a biker bar by mistake. Why don't you send the Barbarian a private message pointing out your shared enthusiasm, and ask him to be a teensy bit more constructive with his criticism.
Dear OS Action Reporter:
I was recently approached by OS member "Weird Bob" and offered a "tip" and a "rate" to flame the member who started the "Sarah Palin for Vice President 2012" open call. Apparently, Weird Bob has submitted several articles to the group that have been rejected because they reflect a certain, shall we say, "fetishistic" interest in Ms. Palin's hairdo. I am ready to agree to Bob's proposal if I can be certain that "tips" and "rates" are transferable, as I would use them to pay off my Fingerhut credit card balance. Please advise.
Sharon Connolly, Plattsburgh NY
"Tips" and "rates" are most certainly not transferable as consideration for services that violate Open Salon's "Terms and Conditions." Just as you cannot wager food stamps at a dog track, you cannot use valuable on-line rewards to pay off somebody for inappropriate behavior. Read the fine print, please. You will be hearing from customer service shortly.
Open Salon Action Reporter:
I am a 15 year old boy who wants to join Open Salon because I have no friends except for the other officers of my high school Audio-Visual Club. The kids at school make fun of us when we set up the stuff for assemblies in the auditorium. So what if I'm not on the football team? They only won one game last year, and that was against the Concordia State School for the Nearsighted.
Anyway, I am trying to find people who share my love of audio-visual equipment--overhead projectors, public address systems, etc. My mom won't let me become an "OSer" because she says I will just attract philatelists looking to have sex with boys. What should I do?
Earl Theobald, Eau Claire, Wisconsin
Your mother is mistaken. A philatelist is someone who collects stamps, not an adult who is attracted to children, which is a pedophile. Philately is legal in all 50 states, and adults often provide support and encouragement to teenagers like yourself who are interested in the romance and mystery of stamp-collecting. Your desires are quite natural in a 15 year-old, and if your mother continues to frustrate you in this regard, remind her that you would be much worse off at your local library.