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January 30, 2013

1:08
P.M.

Web Hostess Live: The latest from the Web

Total Responses: 69

About the hosts

About the host

Host: Monica Hesse

Monica Hesse

Monica Hesse is a staff writer for the Post Style section. She frequently writes about culture, the Web and the intersection of the two.

Read the The Web Hostess Archive .

About the topic

A weekly chat about the best ways to kill time online. Our Web Hostess, Monica Hesse, sifts the Internet so you don't have to, searching for meaning, manners and the next great meme.
Q.

Monica Hesse :

Afternoon, everyone, and thanks for stopping by.

 

To start us off, I have an odd little story regarding a man who blackmailed several women into taking their clothes off via a web cam. This sentence stood out to me: "Posing as a woman, Kazaryan would allegedly trick other potential victims into believing they were talking to one of their female friends, and persuade them to remove their clothing in front of their webcam."

 

I have been wrecking my brain trying to figure out a circumstance in which one of my female friends would convince me to take my clothes off on Web cam. I cannot. The changing room of a gym? Sure. A dressing room? Maybe. But a web cam? How would this happen?

 

I will award four points to anyone who can give me a plausible explanation for this.

Q.

Monica Hesse :

Also: North Korea finally gets mapped on Google maps. Including suspected prison camps.

(We'll get started at 2. I'm just posting a few things in the meantime)

Q.

Monica Hesse :

....And, while we're on the topic of wrongful nakedness: A new lawsuit is trying to prosecute so-called "revenge porn," which is when videos of consensual sex are non-consensually posted online. Either because one participant did not know he/she was being filmed, or because the video was made by two people who were in a relationship, and when the relationship went sour, one party posted the video as revenge.

 

(You must read this New York Observer profile of Hunter Moore, the erstwhile king of revenge porn, which ran last month).

Q.

I will award four points to anyone who can give me a plausible explanation for this.

Explanation - You are smart. They are stupid. The world is full of stupid people.
A.
Monica Hesse :

Ha. But no. I'm not asking "why were these women gullible enough to believe that the creepy dude was a female friend?" I'm asking, "Why were these women taking their clothes off for female friends?"

 

What's the line being used? "Hey, Sara, I just took a class on chest-reading. It's like palm-reading. I can predict your life expectancy using your sternum. Take off your top. It's fun."

– January 30, 2013 2:00 PM
Q.

Naked in front of friends

My best friend and I recently made a pact (after hearing that other ladies were sending naked pics to each other) that unless something was ABNORMAL ("look at these clown boobs, my milk just came in!" or "is this herpes or an ingrown hair?") a naked picture would never be sent. I NEVER want to see my friends' everyday naked bodies, but I"ll look at a trainwreck any day.
A.
Monica Hesse :

This seems like a perfectly reasonable plan.

– January 30, 2013 2:00 PM
Q.

better topics

Noooo, I don't like these topics. I want better topics.
A.
Monica Hesse :

My, my. We are getting demanding, aren't we? Please feel free to suggest better topics. I shan't shoot you down.

– January 30, 2013 2:00 PM
Q.

Naked pictures

Is the lesson that nobody should ever allow anybody to take a naked photo of them? I mean, I know I say that to my 13 year old daughter -- but is the lesson that even married people in committed relationships shouldn't take private photos of each other, because that marriage could end in divorce and one of the partners could be a total psychopathic dingbat?
A.
Monica Hesse :

This is actually a really interesting question. Chatters?

 

Because it does seem like the Internet, and the relative ease of embarrassing people on it, is encouraging us to hold people at arms' length, and to not trust even the people we are supposed to trust the most. On the one hand, it's very prudent to not trust anybody, because the relationship might end, and things might go badly. On the other hand -- how sad.

(FWIW, the chatter asked about nude pictures, but I think this could just as easily pertain to private confessions or declarations -- really anything transmitted online)

– January 30, 2013 2:03 PM
Q.

This might be your mother, it might not be

What is this about you discussing nekkidness in public? Didn't we raise you better, Go stand in the corner, or go to your room, or whatever it was that we used to do.
A.
Monica Hesse :

There is no way this is my mother. My mother would think this conversation was hilarious.

– January 30, 2013 2:03 PM
Q.

Downton Abbey Spoiler

A pox on the editors for headlining Tuesday's health section article with a major plot spoiler. Lucky for me, a friend warned me against looking at the section until I'd watched Sunday night's episode. I was so upset, I threw out that day's copy of the Post.
A.
Monica Hesse :

I'm afraid I'm going to have to side with the spoilers in this instance. Not only was the episode two days old by that point -- well within the bounds of discussion for a television show -- but moreover, the Event in discussion had been floating around the internet for literally months, ever since DA season 3 premiered in the UK last fall. When there's such a ridiculous lag time between the British air time and the American air time -- and when fans had ample opportunity to watch the show Sunday or Monday -- I think that writing about said spoiler on Tuesday was perfectly reasonable.

– January 30, 2013 2:03 PM
Q.

Plausible explanation

This may be a generational thing. I have been surprised by the photographs that young people place on their Facebook, MySpace, Flickr, etc. Not every young person, yet let us say there seem to be a lot of young people, even ones with thoughts of government careers, who have not totally thought out that their acceptance of their body is not necessarily appropriate for public consumption. I am guessing that anyone who takes off their clothes on a Web cam has done it before, and therefore whoever is filming them knows which women these are and this person is tricking them. Seriously, though, if you want to be taken seriously in the government and business world, keep those photos and videos away from the Internet. I would recommend not taking them at all, but at least remember that anything on the Internet can be found and often blackmailers or bosses find them or learn about them.
A.
Monica Hesse :

Yes, yes, to all of this. But, in some odd way, I can actually understand people taking their clothes off for a virtual stranger as part of a sassy striptease better than I can understand someone disrobing for a same-sex buddy.

– January 30, 2013 2:05 PM
Q.

hunter moore

thanks for the info about him. I live in SF and will be sure to punch him in the face if I ever see him.
A.
Monica Hesse :

The Internet salutes you (even though I think Anonymous is already on the job)

– January 30, 2013 2:06 PM
Q.

Regarding the North Korea maps

There are starred "reviews" of the various gulags on Google when you search for them in the new maps. Some of them are funny even though they are so irreverent. I suspect the British.
A.
Monica Hesse :

Oh, you mean these?

Always suspect the British.

– January 30, 2013 2:07 PM
Q.

Better Topic: Cats

This morning I stepped on 2 In-n-Out ketchup packets after I got out of bed. Kitty thought they were her new toys and stole them from the table where my clueless SO left them last night. Your turn.
A.
Monica Hesse :

I...do not think we can make a whole hour-long chat about this. I am very sorry.

– January 30, 2013 2:07 PM
Q.

Naked Blackmail

I thought for a long time if there were any way I could see this going on, and every time I came up with something I thought might work, it hit a wall. Maybe if I wanted a friend to check a mole - nope, I'd be coming up with that on my own. And I still wouldn't show anyone a mole in my bathing suit area on webcam. I can't come up with anything. This boggles my mind.
A.
Monica Hesse :

The mole theory -- I thought of that. But even if that were the case, -you- would be the one saying, "Hey, Jenny, I have a weird thing on my shoulder that I can't quite see. Would you look at it?"

 

You would not be saying, "Jenny. I have an idea. How about you take off your top so I can examine you for strange moles?"

– January 30, 2013 2:09 PM
Q.

Trust

You need to share private confessions/declarations with your love (assuming you have one) and trust they will stay around. This is part of emotionaly growing together. Without this, your life is empty. If the person breaks your trust, it's word against word etc. However, naked pictures are not necessary for emotional growth of a relationship and are majorly risky. Nobody will EVER take a picture of me naked (not that I have anything to be ashamed about)
A.
Monica Hesse :

(Ha.)

 

And yes, I get what you're saying re: nudie pictures being majorly risky. But it also seems to convey an implicit lack of trust that would potentially damage a relationship. It brings up similar feelings that prenuptial agreements do for me. Everyone always says they're not about thinking the relationship will end up in divorce. But...aren't they? Kind of?

– January 30, 2013 2:11 PM
Q.

Naked

Plus, who gets on web cam for someone who isn't also on web cam? I'm not going to let you see me if I can't see you. Ridiculous
A.
Monica Hesse :

Unless he was wearing a wig. And dressed up as a woman. (Was he? HAVE WE CRACKED THE CASE?)

– January 30, 2013 2:12 PM
Q.

Not only was the episode two days old by that point

Not if you watch it on DVR. The Post could very well have waited a week or two. Those who search the Internet might have known about it, yes, but why is the Post catering to them?
A.
Monica Hesse :

I realize that I might be in the minority here, but I'm pretty firm in my beliefs and sense of rightness on this.

Five years ago, you couldn't have DVRd anything (twenty-five years ago, you couldn't even have VCRd anything). The concept of getting to watch your shows whenever you want to watch them is a fairly recent concept. Before that, you watched the show when it was on, or you missed it. We were all part of the same cultural conversation, and I think there was a lot of good to be said about that.

 

Now we're supposed to wait for the people who DVRd it, the people who are waiting to watch the whole season at once, the people who are holding out until the series is on Blu-Ray? No. Just no. It's not that the rest of the world is being inconsiderate to you. It's that you are expecting the rest of the world to revolve around the private timeline that you have set up for yourself. You are the inconsiderate one.

 

And FWIW, I adore Downton Abbey. But due to circumstances related to an article I was writing, I ended up being spoiled on the entire third season before a single episode aired in America. And it is just as good. Even knowing what happens, it's just as good.

– January 30, 2013 2:17 PM
Q.

nudity

Really, just make sure your nude pics don't have any identifying features. No faces, no tattoos, no birthmarks that look like Elvis. Maybe it's just me, but if nobody knows that I'm the one in the pic, like the airport scanner, I don't care who sees my naked flab.
A.
Monica Hesse :

If I had a birthmark that looked like Elvis, I would be showing it to evvvveryone.

– January 30, 2013 2:18 PM
Q.

The Glee cover drama

I don't know if you watch Glee but I'm sure you're aware of the "controversy" over their version of Baby Got Back. Apparently their cover was a cover of the cover Jonathan Coulton did. I don't really understand the backlash. Glee covered Amy Winehouse's version of the Zuton's Valerie and nobody cared. I'm not sure how Glee credits the artists that they cover, but if it's just by writer, then the writer of that song is Sir Mix-a-lot. I don't know why this annoys me so much. I guess because the version of Baby Got Back they did sucked so badly.
A.
Monica Hesse :

I was not at all aware of this controversy. However, it seems appropriate for the naked-centric topics of this chat. FWIW, the backlash is because the arranger wasn't credited -- Amy Winehouse was.

– January 30, 2013 2:18 PM
Q.

Do you have any thoughts on Queen Beatrix abdicating?

A.
Monica Hesse :

I vacationed in the Netherlands a couple of years ago and did not know that they still had a monarchy.

 

That being said, I think I am opposed to this abdication. It seems that if you're going to go ahead and have a monarchy for ceremonial purposes, than one of the mythic aspects of it is that it's a lifetime appointment. One does not retire from the monarchy, one dies from it. What do you think?

– January 30, 2013 2:18 PM
Q.

"Is the lesson that nobody should ever allow anybody to take a naked photo of them?"

What's more worrisome is photos and videos taken secretly without the person's knowledge. How does when prevent against that, short of becoming a hermit?
A.
Monica Hesse :

One doesn't, unfortunately. I mean, if it's a lover, then the normal precautions might apply: either wait awhile before disrobing in front of someone or insist that all disrobing occur at your own house, where you are the master of the technology.

 

But if it's a stranger, shooting up-skirt shots? There's no way to safeguard against that. There should be. Someone should invent an app that lets you know when you're being filmed.

– January 30, 2013 2:20 PM
Q.

Yes to NEVER NAKED DIGITAL PHOTOS

It's true! You should NEVER trade digital naked photos with anyone ever. Ever. Even if that person is the most trustworthy in the world, the camera or the computer they're stored on might be stolen or a zillion other weird things could happen. Never naked digital photos!! My mom and I decided a few weeks ago that we really wish we had a Polaroid of our naked selves in our prime... sad.
A.
Monica Hesse :

Polaroids, yet. Digitals, no.

– January 30, 2013 2:20 PM
Q.

webcam article

The article is really poorly written. Did he hack into their computers and find pictures, and then blackmail them into the webcam shenannigans? Or was he posing as a friend? The former seems more plausible, but still super weird.
A.
Monica Hesse :

Yes, I think part of our confusion has to do with the nebulous questions the article leaves unanswered. For sure.

– January 30, 2013 2:21 PM
Q.

Possible Nekkid-inducing line

"Oh, geez - did I just see a cockroach fall down into your cleavage?" That's assuming that he was one heck of an actress and able to convince them that he was a) female and b) their friend and c) had a very clear connection, web-cam wise.
A.
Monica Hesse :

I think you have landed on it. Truly I do. "There is a disgusting bug that just fell down your top" would cause me to remove my shirt almost immediately.

– January 30, 2013 2:22 PM
Q.

Re: four points

I have a picture of you that I will post online unless you can prove it isn't you...
A.
Monica Hesse :

Hmmmmm. Perhaps.

– January 30, 2013 2:23 PM
Q.

twenty-five years ago, you couldn't even have VCRd anything

I beg your pardon, you could VCR stuff more than thirty years ago.
A.
Monica Hesse :

Yes, you technologically could. I'm digging back into the far recesses of my brain to remember when my family got a VCR, which was about 25 years ago. (Huge news. My brother and I were elated). And at that time, several of my friends and family members still didn't have one. I'm going based on when it became popular to tape shows, stock them up, and fast-forward through the commercials. And that procedure has grown exponentially in the past 25 years.

– January 30, 2013 2:25 PM
Q.

Now we're supposed to wait for the people who DVRd it, the people who are waiting to watch the whole season at once, t

Nonsense, and you know it. There's a vast difference between six months and a week or two.
A.
Monica Hesse :

Nope. Sorry.

– January 30, 2013 2:25 PM
Q.

DA spolier

I'm with you - and I've DVR'd it and haven't gotten to this week's episode yet. I think a one-day embargo is ok (time zones can make some shows hard to watch "live") but beyond that is silly. If you didn't get to it you can try to avoid the spoilers and if one gets to you a sneaky way (like, you weren't reading the TV news but found it in another section) then - bummer, but it's not like it's the hugest deal. It's a TV show. Maybe you'll be more careful to watch next week's episode sooner!
A.
Monica Hesse :

Yes.

And, I should say, I don't think that our lives should revolve around watching television. I don't think that we should turn down birthday parties or dinners with friends because we must watch Downton Abbey on Sunday, and we fear getting spoiled. But I don't think that being spoiled is the worst thing in the world. And I think we should expect ourselves to drift along with the cultural tide, rather than always have our own tides.

– January 30, 2013 2:27 PM
Q.

photos and videos taken secretly without the person's knowledge

While I am not a lawyer, I think this is different. In the "revenge porn", both people were willing participants in the photos/videos. The law was saying the jerk ex owned the photos (i.e. were given the photos willingly by the nude ex) and therefore could do with them as they pleased. Photos/videos taken without consent of both parties wouldn't be covered by this "protection" and while upsetting, would be removed.
A.
Monica Hesse :

The law is an ass in this case then, no?

– January 30, 2013 2:28 PM
Q.

Precaution against "up-skrting"

Slacks or other long pants.
A.
Monica Hesse :

True.

– January 30, 2013 2:28 PM
Q.

a great book

i just read is by ken jennings and called maphead. it talks a bit about google maps and their issues and how just mapping stuff has caused some political fights. It's a fascinating book I think you'd love.
A.
Monica Hesse :

Oooh. Thanks! I'll put it on my list.

– January 30, 2013 2:28 PM
Q.

Possible plausible explanation

First, let me say that I would NEVER take my clothes off for a web cam but is it possible that Mr. Kazaryan knew through previous conversations that, perhaps, the women had breast augmentation or reduction surgery and stated that (s)he was considering it and wanted to see the results? Breast surgery seems so common these days, that is the only excuse I can think of that a woman *may* fall for.
A.
Monica Hesse :

I'm just going to post these as they come, because the speculations we are reaching as we try to get in people's heads is...kind of hilarious.

– January 30, 2013 2:29 PM
Q.

When there's such a ridiculous lag time between the British air time and the American air time

Besides, the New York Times spoiled the whole rest of the season for us, and now we know that the show is going to suck without the person who dies at the end of this season, so it's pretty much over. It will be tragic if the producers try to keep it going without that character.
A.
Monica Hesse :

At this point, I'm frankly surprised that any people have managed -not- to be spoiled.

– January 30, 2013 2:29 PM
Q.

FB spoilers

Did we come to some sort of consensus about whether it's ok to be annoyed by people posting tv show spoilers on FB? I watch Downton Abbey online (PBS posts the episodes on Monday) because I don't have real television (long story). Not ten minutes after this past Sunday's episode, one of my friends posted a spoiler. (Other friends were also posting, but saying things like, "OMG! I'm utterly wreaked!" which revealed their feelings, but not what happened.) I was a bit peeved at my one friend, as were others. I get this is a completely First World Problem, but did I have a right to be annoyed? I supposed that I should expect this in today's media-saturated world...
A.
Monica Hesse :

I -do- think it's rude to real-time Facebook your reactions to a television show. However, there's become such a community around live-Tweeting responses to a show that if you truly want to avoid spoilers, you might do best to stay off of social networks for the evening.

– January 30, 2013 2:31 PM
Q.

private confessions, etc.

I do think the internet forces us to be more cautious, not just with pictures, but with what you write, etc. It makes me insanely uncomfortable when, in asking for advice, a friend forwards or pastes in language from a text or email. For some reason this seems much more intimate than saying, "this guy I'm dating said such and such, what would you do" vs. "here is his email, how would you respond". And as for pictures, it's so hard because you know most of these women trusted the guys that were taking the pics/they were taking them for, but there's no way to guarantee your love/trust isn't misplaced.
A.
Monica Hesse :

I totally agree with this! I always feel like a spy whenever someone forwards me an email from someone else. It feels much more like eavesdropping than advice giving.

– January 30, 2013 2:32 PM
Q.

Topic suggestion

How to get a book published in today's book market. If only we knew someone who has recently written a book...
A.
Monica Hesse :

I have no idea how to get a book published. You think I'm joking -- but I feel like everything that happened with mine was a complete fluke. And I think that other authors would tell you the same thing. Every experience is completely different, and the only solid piece of advice is, "Write the book."

– January 30, 2013 2:33 PM
Q.

Yo!

I didn't realize DA stood for Downton Abbey in the post labeled "DA Spoiler". I read it in my brain as "Da Spoiler" (yo). Thanks for the chuckle!
A.
Monica Hesse :

At first I thought it was "dark arts spoiler" or "Dumbledore's Army" spoiler, but I had to remind myself that we live in a post-Potter world now.

– January 30, 2013 2:34 PM
Q.

Spoiler Dispute

As someone who DVRs everything and generally watches it way later, this whole "spoiler" idea is lame. If something is broadcast on television it is fair game for commentary and no one has any responsibility from shielding you from the plot twists. Moreover, there are studies that people actually like books, TV shows, vacations etc. BETTER if they have an idea of what will happen because creates an air of excitement and expectation. This is why people read/watch the same books/movies/tv shows over and again. End of Rant.
A.
Monica Hesse :

Thank you.

– January 30, 2013 2:34 PM
Q.

"a week or two"

But that's the problem w/ the DVR/waiting for the DVD spoiler people. Where do you draw the line? And if it's an issue that's only "hot" because of the show, how long can you wait before it's like, "hey remember that episode of Downton two months ago, here's an article on an issue that arose during that episode." Then everyone would be like, "why didn't they write this closer to the episode?" I think this is more the technology making people all "me, me, me" about everything. Just because you can wait weeks, months, years, to watch something doesn't mean you can expect everyone else to do that and to wait until you've seen it to discuss it.
A.
Monica Hesse :

Thank you. Especially the point about not knowing where to draw the line. Some people are writing in, "But two days is different than a week," and some people are writing in, "I only needed three hours," and some people are writing in, "You should have waited at least a month."

– January 30, 2013 2:36 PM
Q.

Not the guy in the cubicle next to you, honest.

A nasty bug just fell down your cleavage.
A.
Monica Hesse :

Ah-HAA. All of my cubicle mates are women right now. And if there was a bug that fell down my shirt, one of them would already be helping me take it off while the others formed a protective barrier to prevent the rest of the newsroom from seeing the incident. I have a good work pod right now.

– January 30, 2013 2:38 PM
Q.

Spoilers

Also, this is a NEWS site. They report the news. Expecting news to be held for a week because you can't be bothered to watch tv is like asking them to not report on the Inauguration speech because you recorded it.
A.
Monica Hesse :

This.

– January 30, 2013 2:38 PM
Q.

Continuum tv show

You seem like a person who would watch this show. Do you? If so, what do you think?
A.
Monica Hesse :

I do not! Should I?

– January 30, 2013 2:39 PM
Q.

Queen Biatrix

Her mother abdicated too. Seems like the way they do things.
A.
Monica Hesse :

Oh, those practical Dutch.

– January 30, 2013 2:39 PM
Q.

Queen Beatrix

I'm fine with it--but mostly just because it's tradition. Her mother abdicated for her; I think her grandmother abdicated for her mother. I will say I might be influenced because for years I wanted Charles to abdicate for William.
A.
Monica Hesse :

The joke is on Charles. Queen Elizabeth will rule until the end of time.

– January 30, 2013 2:40 PM
Q.

queen beatrix

The Dutch have a history of Monarchs resigning. Queen Wilhelmina resigned in favour of her daughter in 1948. Queen Juliana resigned in favour of her daughter Beatrix in 1980. Now Queen Beatrix is resigning in favour of her eldest son. The Brit, on the other hand, have had only one abdication.
A.
Monica Hesse :

I am fascinated and enamored that all of you have this Dutch monarchy knowledge at your fingertips. I love you guys.

– January 30, 2013 2:41 PM
Q.

Spoiler etiquette

I think it is polite to refrain from talking about spoilers in public social media until the program has aired on the West Coast--until everyone has had the OPPORTUNITY to watch it in real time. After that, if you didn't watch in real time and the mystery is important to you, stay off the internet.
A.
Monica Hesse :

Several people have brought up the West Coast addendum, which I can completely support and get behind.

– January 30, 2013 2:41 PM
Q.

Post-Potter, circa-Downtown world

A.
Monica Hesse :

My life. It is changed.

– January 30, 2013 2:43 PM
Q.

Blogging "Downton Abbey"

Did I read somewhere that ex-Postie Celebritologist Jen Chaney is blogging "Downton Abbey"? If so, do you have the link?
A.
Monica Hesse :

I don't have a link right handy, but she's blogging for Vulture.com, and she is hilarious.

– January 30, 2013 2:44 PM
Q.

Facebook spam

All of these "if I get 1 million likes, my wife said I can have a goat" postings are cluttering up my news feed. I'm guessing that they rise to the top because of the "show top stories" setting but man are they annoying. Equally annoying are the viral political or gun control posts; they're like the forwards/chain emails that I used to receive when my grandma first got email. Short of hiding the offending poster/commenter/liker is there anything to be done? Setting my news feed to Most recent stories brings on a whole different type of spam.
A.
Monica Hesse :

Alas. If you don't want to hide the offending poster, then there really is not much that can be done. Short of waiting for Facebook's entire culture to change (and it will).

– January 30, 2013 2:44 PM
Q.

Spoilers

Headlines that have spoilers just seems overly harsh. Maybe change it to Preeclampsia, Downton's Hidden Killer rather than What Killed XXXXX. It's kind of if a review of Citizen Kane had the headline "Despite Stupid Name for a Sled, an All Time Best Movie."
A.
Monica Hesse :

Hahahaha!

– January 30, 2013 2:46 PM
Q.

Facebook spoilers

If I want to discuss a recent episode, I'll try to post something vague that invites comments. That way, the specifics end up in reply and someone who hasn't watched yet can skip reading them. But in general I agree that once a show has aired, it's freely up for dicucssion and the person who hasn't watched is responsible for trying to avoid stuff. Some people think that tv spoiler rules = movie rules, but it just doesn't work.
A.
Monica Hesse :

Yes. We haven't discussed this, but television rules are obviously different than movie rules. Movies shouldn't be spoiled -- not without a lot of warning -- for at least several weeks after they've been in the theater.

– January 30, 2013 2:47 PM
Q.

Ken Jennings

Also read Brainiac. Dude is HILARIOUS. (Also, check out his AMAs on Reddit.)
A.
Monica Hesse :

Thankee.

– January 30, 2013 2:47 PM
Q.

Photos

I can't imagine doing this, nor could I imagine anything but being disappointed in seeing my friends sending them to me. Sure, I'm inhibited, but a lot of people just look better dressed to some extent.
A.
Monica Hesse :

"A lot of people just look better dressed" should be stitched on a pillow somewhere.

– January 30, 2013 2:48 PM
Q.

Spoilers

If the artistic quality is good, as it is on "Downton Abby", one can appreciate it even knowing how things will end. SPOILER ALERT: Seriously, did anyone see "Lincoln" without not knowing Lincoln dies in the end? Yet it still is a great movie. I recall people reading "Team of Rivals" by Doris Kearns Goodwin and they were reading as fast as they can because they wanted to find out who wins the Civil War. (I won't spoil that ending.)
A.
Monica Hesse :

Actually, I would love to see Lincoln marketed with the tagline, "Don't spoil it for your friends."

– January 30, 2013 2:49 PM
Q.

It's not that the rest of the world is being inconsiderate to you...You are the inconsiderate one.

I was going to write a long setence detailing why you are right, Monica. But you said it better than I could. You are totally correct.
A.
Monica Hesse :

Feel free to go ahead and write that long sentence anyway. If you want to. (It's been a rough week. Sometimes I could use the validation).

– January 30, 2013 2:49 PM
Q.

Continuum

It's a scifi show about the future and time travel with a female lead (cop). The philosphical questions presented (only seen 2 episodes) are (1) what is the role of corporate power in society and (2) if the good guys use evil tactics that kill innocents, who is in the right? Also, interesting, if overly convenient futuristic gadgetry. I like it so far.
A.
Monica Hesse :

Ooooh. Oooooohhhhh!

– January 30, 2013 2:52 PM
Q.

"Preeclampsia, Downton's Hidden Killer"

There was only one character well-along in pregnancy at the time of this week's epi. So we can pretty well eliminate all the other female characters -- unless it was Isis, of course (because I doubt pets were neutered back in 1920, and Pharaoh is still healthy)!
A.
Monica Hesse :

DA is not above having entire plots focused on the dog.

– January 30, 2013 2:52 PM
Q.

Doppledanger (is that the right word?)

I look like a movie star. I have infrequently been stopped by people who asks me for my autograph by people who think I am this movie star. I tell them I am not who they think I am. I have since read horrible things posted about how this movie star refuses to sign autographs. I often wonder if the postings are about the movie star, or me, or perhaps us both.
A.
Monica Hesse :

This is an ethical conundrum. On the one hand, you do  not want to lie and pretend to be someone you are not. On the other hand, you do not want to besmirch a celebrities good name by allowing people to think he/she is a jerk. (WHO DO YOU LOOK LIKE?)

– January 30, 2013 2:54 PM
Q.

Spoilers

It's not just t.v. shows like Downton that get ruined by the Post's spoilers. Last night I DVRed the Capitols game so I can watch it tonight, but once again the Post spoiled it by giving away the final score of the game on their website. Of course they weren't the only ones, I also heard the score on the local news. Thanks, jerks!
A.
Monica Hesse :

Hahahaha! (This is irony. Right? Right?)

– January 30, 2013 2:54 PM
Q.

I recall people reading "Team of Rivals" by Doris Kearns Goodwin and they were reading as fast as they can because they wanted to find out who wins the Civil War.

You can't expect me to believe that people who can appreciate Doris Kearns Goodwin's writing are ignorant of history.
A.
Monica Hesse :

I think the writer was implying that the book read so much like a novel that people forgot they were reading history for which they already knew the outcome.

– January 30, 2013 2:55 PM
Q.

Thanks, Cupcake!

Thanks, Cupcake! I just found Jen's "Downton Abbey" blog.

A.
Monica Hesse :

You're welcome. It's delicious.

– January 30, 2013 2:56 PM
Q.

Cheating on us

I see you tweeting when you should be responding here. What, are we not good enough for you here? Is there something lacking in our relationship here? I'm hurt. Send me a nudie pic and we're good.
A.
Monica Hesse :

But wait. If you saw me there, that means you were there too...

– January 30, 2013 2:56 PM
Q.

Doppleganger

The Today Show had a story about a 15 year old kid who looks like Harry Styles (apologies if I spelled it wrong). Apparently there is quite the market for dopplegangers in Britain, if you happen to look like a British star, and are willing to move over there.
A.
Monica Hesse :

They do doppelgangers much better than we do. Around the time of the royal wedding, I met several young women in Britain who were making fine livings off of pretending to be Kate Middleton. And you know what? They didn't even really look all that much like her.

– January 30, 2013 2:58 PM
Q.

da spoiler

My problem wasn't that they wrote the story, or that it was on the front of the health section, but that it was listed on the front page of the website as one of the top 10 stories! No chance to avoid spoilers in that case. Also, if this was actually "news", shouldn't the Post have written about it months ago when the story aired in the UK? Can't have it both ways (it can't both be "news" and "several months old").
A.
Monica Hesse :

Well. Of course you can have it both ways. It was new to the 300 million Americans who had no way to see the episode for themselves until Sunday night. It's the same reason that we wait to review foreign films until they come to E Street -- there's no point in knowing if there's a really good movie currently playing in Paris.

 

Furthermore, the Post doesn't decide what the top 10 stories are. Readers do. That story only made the list because enough readers had clicked on it -- DA fans who obviously didn't care if they were spoiled, or had bothered to watch the show when it aired.

 

I can see we will not agree on this. But we agree on so many things, I'm sure. Do not let this get in the way of our friendship.

– January 30, 2013 3:01 PM
Q.

Queen Beatrix

When I was a kid my mom was friends with one of the Queen's ex-brothers-in-law and his children and I got to know them a bit. They were all pretty down to earth people although they did have that just acceptance of being able to get/do pretty much anything they wanted. This is not a knock against them. It is just part of who they were.
A.
Monica Hesse :

This is by far the most random brush with celebrity I have ever encountered. Thank you.

– January 30, 2013 3:02 PM
Q.

Time traveler

As a time traveler, I am glad the 2013 Super Bowl is over and I am not spoiling anything but celebrating the Ravens victory. The Super Bowl was last Sunday, right?
A.
Monica Hesse :

Oh no. You have traveled back to the wrong parallel dimension. The 49rs won in this world.

– January 30, 2013 3:03 PM
Q.

Lincoln

When I saw it, during the voting scene I could here someone in the audience saying, "Vote yes!" to herself. Even though we all know that the amendment passed, it was easy to get caught up in the action and pray the characters did the right thing.
A.
Monica Hesse :

Exactly.

– January 30, 2013 3:03 PM
Q.

How does a doppelganger differ from an impersonator

or an impostor?
A.
Monica Hesse :

I would say it has something to do with intent -- how much you are trying to impersonate someone else, as opposed to just coincidentally looking like them. But I would say this having completely made up that difference, and having nothing scientific to back it with.

– January 30, 2013 3:04 PM
Q.

WaPo Olympic spoilers

The Post spoiled the Olympics for me several times. What's the ruling on front page pictures of winning athletes when the competition hasn't aired yet? Maybe a headline that results were in and a jump?
A.
Monica Hesse :

This, I think, is a very tough call. And I don't think we have time to parse it out during this chat. It's already after three. What are we still doing here?

– January 30, 2013 3:05 PM
Q.

oh good grief

You know what, the ending of the Sixth Sense was spoiled for me, and I still enjoyed the darn movie. If your life is so wrapped up in a show/movie/etc that you can't risk being spoiled, then lock yourself in a box until you see it. You can't both want to be a part of the internet world (chats, webpages, etc.) and simultaneously expect it to be exactly what you want, when you want it.
A.
Monica Hesse :

I'm posting this mostly for the last sentence, which is exactly correct.

– January 30, 2013 3:07 PM
Q.

Doppleganger opposite

I was in Las Vegas and was staying in a hotel that was known for its celebrity look-a-likes. I went to a show and had a nice but short conversation with a celebrity George Clooney-look-a-like and his lovely date. I later saw photos of George Clooney and his girl friend and I realized something: that was not his look-a-like.
A.
Monica Hesse :

I bet you were sooo much cooler with George Clooney because you did not know it was George Clooney. (FWIW, the first time I stood next to Sarah Palin, my first thought was, "That is a terrible Sarah Palin impersonator.")

– January 30, 2013 3:08 PM
Q.

"Bar of soap, Downton Abbey's Hidden Killer"

or perhaps "O'Brien, Downton's Hidden Killer."
A.
Monica Hesse :

This seems perfectly appropriate to end on.

 

Thanks for stopping by -- see you next week.

– January 30, 2013 3:09 PM
Q.

 

A.
Host: