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Thursday, October 08, 2009

How Ann Althouse Picks Her Pastries

I love to see great minds at work. I could spend hours listening to Michele Bachmann link ACORN to alien abductions or watching Joe the Plumber work out the most opportune time to sneak a fart into a conversation. These kinds of exercises in deep thinking fascinate me. I spend day happily deconstructing them.

I witnessed a great mind at work yesterday when Ann Althouse wrote about Bill Ayers jokingly confessing to being Barack Obama's ghostwriter. Here's a snippet of that piece:
Get it? Let's say he did write it. Well, he's not really admitting that. He's making fun of the way some conservative bloggers think they've found evidence that he wrote it. He knows most sensible people believe their evidence is bullshit, and this has been amusing to him because he — in this scenario of mine — knows that, actually, they are right.
Reading that made me wonder how she uses these incredible deductive skills in everyday life. Wouldn't it be great to see how her mind works when she's doing something as simple as buying a pastry? I imagine her internal conversation would go something like this:
Did the baker's nose wrinkle when he pointed to the cream cheese danish? What does that mean? Is he silently warning me that the cream cheese is a bit off today? Or does he just want me to think that, so he can sell it to a more valued customer.

I come in here everyday. He knows me. He knows how I think. Perhaps the cheese danish is tainted and he knows that if he hints that it is bad, I'll think he's saving it for a more valued customer and snatch the rotten pastry up for myself.

Or maybe he wants me to buy the bearclaw next to it. Could it be that he is pretending that the danish is off so I'll buy a day-old bearclaw? Or maybe he wants me to think that's his intention so I don't buy the bearclaw. Does he get a higher return from bearclaws than danishes? Is he trying to make me think he wants me to buy the bearclaw so I don't buy it?

Wait, there's a creampuff on the other side of the danish. Look at that. Look at the creampuff and bearclaw in profile. Breasts! The baker must be trying to unnerve me by making a subtle reference to the Valenti breast controversy. He's trying to recreate the embarrassment I felt then, hoping that it'll overwhelm my thought processes and cause me to buy the bad danish.

Or maybe he just wants me to think that, so I don't buy it, and he can sell it to a more valued customer.

Damn it. I'm going to buy the danish, anyway.

No, no, no, no, I can beat him at this game. I'll get some imported biscotti.

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  1. I dunno if biscotti goes well with a box of wine.

  2. General, Sir:

    May I say that Jessica Valenti is a very attractive young woman, whereas Ms. Althouse appears to have been struck, heavily, with the fugly stick. I hope that doesn't come across as sexist. Ann Althouse would be an ugly MAN, never mind woman.

    Danish, biscotti, wtf? Has Ann Althausfrau got something against Ho-Ho's and Ring Dings? WTF is the matter with a good ol' MerKKKin pastry like the Twinky? She prolly drinks fuckin' lattay too.

  3. That poor woman looks like she just got goosed by a rhino.

  4. Sir,
    Your explanation of Ann's thought processes put me in mind of the scene in "The Princess Bride" when Vizzini is trying to figure out which glass of wine has the Iocane powder.

    "But it's so simple. All I have to do is divine it from what I know of you. Are you the sort of man who would put the poison into his own goblet or his enemies? Now, a clever man would put the poison into his own goblet because he would know that only a great fool would reach for what he was given. I am not a great fool so I can clearly not choose the wine in front of you ... But you must have known I was not a great fool; you would have counted on it, so I can clearly not choose the wine in front of me.
    Because Iocaine comes from Australia. As everyone knows, Australia is entirely peopled with criminals. And criminals are used to having people not trust them, as you are not trusted by me. So, I can clearly not choose the wine in front of you.
    And you must have suspected I would have known the powder's origin, so I can clearly not choose the wine in front of me.
    You've beaten my giant, which means you're exceptionally strong ... so you could have put the poison in your own goblet trusting on your strength to save you, so I can clearly not choose the wine in front of you. But, you've also bested my Spaniard, which means you must have studied ... and in studying you must have learned that man is mortal so you would have put the poison as far from yourself as possible, so I can clearly not choose the wine in front of me!"

  5. Oh...Pastries....I'm sorry I thought she was talking about her Pasties. Now that would be something I would really like to hear her talk about.

  6. I can't go to Ann's site. It's too dangerous.
    Even reading the paragraph above, I slip into a trance-like state. I stare out the window and become highly suggestive. Ann has power in her words. She is able to knot my brain so tight that I cannot but help being hypnotised and believe anything. Sometimes my girlfriend toys with me by reading a piece of Ann's work and then tells me to walk around clucking like a chicken.
    It isn't just me. I understand that everyone who chooses to read Ann's work has their brain tied in knots. The problem is cumulative. If there isn't enough of a break in between, the brain-knots never come undone. I'd like to help them, but how much Ann before a brain is so knotted that it is permanent? Permanently mulling over pasty and boobs. Before long, these people will be watching and nodding along when Beck cries.
    Oh the humanity!!!

  7. Hmmm... pastry and boobs. That doesn't sound that bad really...
    OMG! I've read too much!

  8. Re: BC -- who let another Aussie in? I refer to these lines in the previous commentary: Because Iocaine comes from Australia. As everyone knows, Australia is entirely peopled with criminals.

    Look mate -- I want to be the token Australian commenter around here! It's OK, because I an untainted by "the stain" of antipodean criminal heritage, not having been born here...

  9. oops. I posted my token aussie bit in the wrong thread.

  10. That's OK, cobber. You don't have to keep proving that you're ridgelley didgelley Aussie by doing things like that. I believe you...


We'll try dumping haloscan and see how it works.