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Thread: The Peanut Gallery

  1. #2051
    Member Mxx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fitz View Post
    Can we start a betting pool?
    Think of the possibilities... I'll bet that it will include a gif-based Stigmata reply to what will in retrospect be a massive red flag post.

  2. #2052
    Senior Member Limes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fitz View Post
    Can we start a betting pool?
    I've been thinking about this TBH and I'm willing to name my horse.
    I think that Eli Porter will kill someone just to watch them die in the Johnny Cash sense. Possibly even in Reno.

  3. #2053
    Homo siderius Sistamatic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Starjots View Post
    Per wikipedia Top murder rates of US cities

    St Louis, MO 66.7
    Baltimore, MD 55.8
    Detroit, MI 39.8
    New Orleans, LA 39.5
    Baton Rouge, LA 38.3
    Kansas City, MO 30.9
    Cleveland, OH 27.8
    Memphis, TN 27.7
    Newark, NJ 27.1
    Chicago, IL 24.1

    All of these are still way too high. Get rid of every handgun in the country and see what happens. Better yet, get rid of poverty, hopelessness, and ignorance.
    Damn. I live in one of those places. I know a lot of my students lost family members/friends/sigoths to murder when I was teaching, and I've seen former students on the news as victims before.

    According to that same source, my city is also top five in the nation in per-capita burglary. I caught someone about to break in last week. Stupid thing, and partly my fault. Most burglars are looking for low hanging fruit, and since I'm on a highly visible corner lot, work at home, have neighbors who also work at home, and don't have any secluded back driveway, I don't typically make the cut..unless I just leave my door unlocked like a moron. I stepped out and went to my friend's house four doors down. Thought I was just gonna be there a few minutes but I got sidetracked. Didn't lock the door.

    When I came home the front door had been opened and not shut all the way and the same guy I'd turned down when he knocked on the door the day before asking if I needed sticks picked up from my lawn ... yeah, he was coming out of my fenced back yard, walked between my car and the garage on his way back to the front door, walking confidently toward it about to make a call on his phone. He looked up and saw me, did a double take, then said he was knocking on the back doors to see if I needed any yard work done.

    Of course we all know what really happened is he knocked on the front door, no one answered, he tried and found it unlocked, and so he went to the back to make sure no one was home before he went in. If I'd come back 5 minutes later I'd likely have walked in on him. That would have been awkward and really fucking dangerous. I asked around. He had knocked on doors all down the street with the notable exception of one house that had video surveillance and a ring doorbell. Money and time later and we are no longer low hanging fruit. Doorbell plus a camera on each of the other 3 sides of the house. (I also now have really amazing wifi coverage that won't shut off even if the power does....in for a penny in for a pound...plus hurricane season). They can distinguish between person sized motion and say raccoon sized motion so we only get audible alerts in the house and on our phones if it is a person sized motion. Oh, and they have night vision too. Pretty cool thing. I always know if there are people in my yard, at my front door, or in my driveway, even if I'm not home (I'm always home, though frequently alone). And I can turn on a cacophonous alarm on all sides of the house if I see someone snooping and I want to scare them away, or I can just talk to them through the cameras. I'd use the alarm in most attempted robbery circumstances though. I'm sure it isn't foolproof, but it does keep my fruit from dangling so low. (snicker)

    I find it a very comforting thing to have when I'm home by myself in VR. I feel like a blind person should also have a similar setup, even though they wouldn't be able to see the footage.
    Insults are effective only where emotion is present. -- Spock, "Who Mourns for Adonais?" Stardate 3468.1.

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  4. #2054
    Senior Member jyng1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sistamatic View Post
    Damn. I live in one of those places. I know a lot of my students lost family members/friends/sigoths to murder when I was teaching, and I've seen former students on the news as victims before.

    According to that same source, my city is also top five in the nation in per-capita burglary.

    Wut?? I don't know anyone who has lost someone to murder (apart from at work-but they're special).

    What brand cameras did you buy? (if it's not on camera it didn't happen).

  5. #2055
    Senior Member Limes's Avatar
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    I'm surprised Philadelphia isn't on that list. I spent a few years commuting through PHL twice per week and the news had black on black murders or police shootouts every day, sometimes two.

    I can believe St Louis is on the list. I have a fellow INTJ photographer coworker from there who took me to all the crappy neighbourhoods in a drive through one night after barbecue. Then the next day, I had to go to East St Louis and break into a bank. It went surprisingly well considering that the small town across the river has the highest incidence of violent crime in the country. I believe it was one in twenty people are the victim of violent crime there.

  6. #2056
    Homo siderius Sistamatic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jyng1 View Post
    Wut?? I don't know anyone who has lost someone to murder (apart from at work-but they're special).
    I don't really worry too much about it happening to me. There is a tale of two cities theme here. Baton Rouge is two places superimposed onto each other. I live in the safer one and many of my students live in the not so safe one. The guy who was looking to steal from me has no reason to empathize with me at all. If he'd robbed me I'd probably still be better off than him. Doesn't mean I'm not going to take precautions though.

    That being said, someone of my own demographic that I knew did get murdered here last year, but randomly and from a distance by a crazy person she'd never even met who was off his meds. The weapon was his vehicle.

    I got ring cameras. Several people I know have them and like them and so far it's been flawless.
    Insults are effective only where emotion is present. -- Spock, "Who Mourns for Adonais?" Stardate 3468.1.

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  7. #2057
    Senior Member Starjots's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sistamatic View Post
    I got ring cameras. Several people I know have them and like them and so far it's been flawless.
    We had a break-in/room trashing in Albuquerque and got Arlo cameras, and then put them up at our own house. Someone later stole a package off the porch in ABQ, so we did know EXACTLY when the package was stolen. Problem is, many such people looking for a quick score wear hoodies around here, so no real ID. NM has some serious crime too, especially the southern part of Albuquerque.

    On the plus side, the cameras have been wonderful for identifying animals we want to evict from various holes under the house and are good for watching the house IF we ever get to take a vacation again.

  8. #2058
    Homo siderius Sistamatic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Starjots View Post
    We had a break-in/room trashing in Albuquerque and got Arlo cameras, and then put them up at our own house. Someone later stole a package off the porch in ABQ, so we did know EXACTLY when the package was stolen. Problem is, many such people looking for a quick score wear hoodies around here, so no real ID. NM has some serious crime too, especially the southern part of Albuquerque.

    On the plus side, the cameras have been wonderful for identifying animals we want to evict from various holes under the house and are good for watching the house IF we ever get to take a vacation again.
    Yeah, I think it's probably possible to prevent package theft with ring, but not at 100 percent. In our neighborhood the average break in results in the whole house being looted, tvs, computers, jewelry, phones, everything. It's happened to the house across the street 3 times (to 3 different owners, all of whom think that back driveway that no one can see should be reopened for convenience). It happened to my best friends four doors down too. Since I get a motion alert sent to my phone every time a human comes by and I can set off a loud alarm from my phone and call the cops, It seems like it would limit the amount that could be stolen to just a package or something...it would be very difficult to rob the whole house. It would also make me aware if someone had gone into the house...I think the thing that scares me most about the recent encounter is that I might have just walked into the house on the guy completely unaware. About 8 years ago a lady a couple of blocks from here walked in on a burglary and got beaten so badly she almost died. On the other end of the spectrum, a robber was shot and killed inside the home of another neighbor.

    My Aunt lives in NM. She got burgled two years ago. They set up cameras too and they've been seeing coatimundis at night that they never knew were there.

    One feature of the ring system that I like is that if I'm travelling overseas or somewhere that I can't expect to have internet access, I can temporarily give my friends access to the alerts.

    We have a side yard that is very difficult to see from inside the house. I've been really enjoying seeing it through the camera, but I still haven't figured out what is making the trail behind the shed. I may crank the motion sensitivity temporarily.
    Insults are effective only where emotion is present. -- Spock, "Who Mourns for Adonais?" Stardate 3468.1.

    It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. -- Aristotle

    This SEP field is glorious!

  9. #2059
    Senior Member jyng1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sistamatic View Post
    Yeah, I think it's probably possible to prevent package theft with ring, but not at 100 percent. In our neighborhood the average break in results in the whole house being looted, tvs, computers, jewelry, phones, everything. It's happened to the house across the street 3 times (to 3 different owners, all of whom think that back driveway that no one can see should be reopened for convenience). It happened to my best friends four doors down too. Since I get a motion alert sent to my phone every time a human comes by and I can set off a loud alarm from my phone and call the cops, It seems like it would limit the amount that could be stolen to just a package or something...it would be very difficult to rob the whole house. It would also make me aware if someone had gone into the house...I think the thing that scares me most about the recent encounter is that I might have just walked into the house on the guy completely unaware. About 8 years ago a lady a couple of blocks from here walked in on a burglary and got beaten so badly she almost died. On the other end of the spectrum, a robber was shot and killed inside the home of another neighbor.

    My Aunt lives in NM. She got burgled two years ago. They set up cameras too and they've been seeing coatimundis at night that they never knew were there.

    One feature of the ring system that I like is that if I'm travelling overseas or somewhere that I can't expect to have internet access, I can temporarily give my friends access to the alerts.

    We have a side yard that is very difficult to see from inside the house. I've been really enjoying seeing it through the camera, but I still haven't figured out what is making the trail behind the shed. I may crank the motion sensitivity temporarily.
    And you live on the good side of town?

  10. #2060
    Homo siderius Sistamatic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jyng1 View Post
    And you live on the good side of town?
    Well, that's complicated. In older southern cities, the "good" and "bad" parts are sort of blended together unless you go out to the outskirts. This is probably in the top 5 best neighborhoods in city limits, but there is no neighborhood in city limits that matches the modern "suburbs" concept.

    The TLDR version:

    So while it's not one of those McMansion gated communities on the outskirts, in the 50s, this was a brand new neighborhood with brand new houses and schools. Now it's an aging neighborhood with a racially and economically diverse community. The middle school that was built in the 50s in what was then considered a modern style, looks like a backdrop from Fallout today. They can't even afford to keep the AC on. But the properties still command a very high price only because, and I can't stress this enough, the traffic in this city is about as bad as traffic gets. The last time a study was released, it was revealed that were number one in the nation for hours spent sitting still in traffic for a city in our size range, so if you commute from the satellite suburbs, you are going to spend up to 4 hours a day in your car. But if you come from one of the neighborhoods inside the city, you might spend 15 minutes in your car. My husband's commute is, for example, 3 minutes, 5 on a bad day, and he can just come be at home for his lunch break. But the downside is that to go hiking or do anything outdoorsy, you have to sit in traffic for over an hour. When you drive home from said excursion, the same thing happens again. Even if you get home from a trip late at night, as soon as you hit Baton Rouge, everything slows to a crawl and the last part of your trip is...frustrating. This town is super dangerous for bikers and walkers too, and our public transportation is total shite. But if you can afford to create a nice secluded oasis for yourself in the middle of town minutes from work, that doesn't matter so much. @TeresaJ has been here. She can attest that our house, despite being in town, is a nice peaceful place where the outside world can be more or less forgotten.

    Our neighborhood has big lots, ranging from a third of an acre to 3/4 of an acre. Ours is just over half an acre. The houses were built back when they were built to last (rafters made of 2x4s instead of light weight trusses made of 1x1s and staples that are found in your average new construction...even really expensive new construction), and with a bit of remodeling, are sturdier than a brand new house ever thought about being. This hood also didn't flood during the 2016 floods...because back in the 50s there was still high ground to build on. All the McMansions in their gated communities in the outskirts were underwater, and because flood maps are useless, most didn't have flood insurance even though they could have afforded it. Probably half the upper middle class families in the greater Baton Rouge area took on a second mortgage in 2016 to rebuild their uninsured flooded property. Of course as you can imagine, a lot of the poor neighborhoods in the city limits were built on low ground. Those guys just lost everything. You can't get a second mortgage if you are poor.

    So our property values have skyrocketed, and a lot of people with more money than I have are coming in and improving the ever living shit out of properties here and just sending their kids to private school to avoid sending their kids to the shitty public schools that keep the poor people in town from ever having a chance to get ahead. But we also have properties that are falling apart because the adult children of the parents who built in the 50s aren't well off enough to maintain an aging property, or because the OG owners are like 90 now and they don't have the wherewithal to keep up with maintenance. So it's a mixed bag neighborhood. There are a couple of construction companies that are coming in and buying up every poorly maintained property that comes on the market and either remodeling or doing a total tear down and rebuild, then selling for big dollars. A fully remodded property (like torn out sheetrock, total rewire/replumb, then back up to modern codes but with the hefty bones of a 50's house) or new construction in this neighborhood goes for half million. The owners of the construction company have moved here and are vested in making this hood a high dollar place. Every single time that happens, our property values eke up just a bit more.

    I doubt we could have afforded to move here if we'd come in after they got started. We bought a fairly derelict property with an eccentric floorplan (that we like, but that isn't great for keeping up with joneses) for super super cheap and have been very slowly fixing it up as we can afford. We are putting a lot more into critical repairs than we are into cosmetics, and we prioritize what we want to live in over what a real estate agent says is selling. We figure there'll be other introverted dinks that want an eccentric floorplan when we are ready to retire elsewhere.

    Of course there are scenarios that fuck us and everyone else in the city over. Like the St. George initiative, in which a bunch of rich people who were off in the burbs to one side of the city incorporated, then made a move to annex all the tax generating businesses there. Because of some clever loophole manipulating, the only people allowed to vote on the measure were the people who would benefit from it. There may have been some gerrymandering involved as well. The people whose schools and infrastructure would lose funding in the annexation got no vote. Now our schools are getting even less money (they had to cancel plans already in progress to rebuild that school I mentioned that's in such bad shape it looks abandoned) and the St. George schools that were already super nice are getting massive extra funding and everyone with school aged kids who can afford it is moving there. Until covid, the price they paid was a harsh commute. Now that everyone is working from home, there may be no incentive to buy in our neighborhood unless you don't have kids and can afford to put cameras up everywhere. Our only hope is that more and more people aren't having kids.

    And income inequality here doesn't just inch forward, it now has another machine that will inch it forward in perpetuity.

    Sigh.
    Insults are effective only where emotion is present. -- Spock, "Who Mourns for Adonais?" Stardate 3468.1.

    It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. -- Aristotle

    This SEP field is glorious!

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