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03 October 2003 — Brownie Points (47)


So previously I've mentioned the idea of Foldedspace Brownie Points in jest, but now I've decided to actually codify a formal system incorporating reward levels and everything. Why? Because I think it's fun.

Here's how it'll work. I'll award Brownie Points as I see fit, basically arbitrarily, but often in a predictable fashion. I'll award one Brownie Point to the first person who brings a typo to my attention. (Notice I didn't say spelling mistake. That's me being arrogant: "Oh, I could never make a spelling mistake; any error must be a typo.")

Typos in comments do not count unless the misspelled word is a homonym. I've been having a hell of time with homonyms lately (e.g. I always use "through" for "threw"), so pointing out a homonym in a comment earns a Brownie Point.

Exceptionally good comments will earn five Brownie Points.

Sometimes I'll ask for your participation in return for a certain number of Brownie Points. For example, each person who completes the writing assignment gets five Brownie Points. When I read them (which I will not do until I've finished with my own), I may award extra Brownie Points for the best one. (Or I may not.)

If you take me to a Women's World Cup football match you earn a zillion Brownie Points.

To what end?

I'm not sure yet. I'll keep a tally, of course, and once I've seen the pace at which points accumulate, I'll establish actual rewards. These are likely to be things like "Nicole has earned fifty Brownie Points so J.D. will now send her one of his favorite books" or "Mackenzie has earned twenty-five Brownie Points so J.D. will take him to a movie" or things of that nature.

I'll play it by ear.

Brownie Points are retroactive to October first. Kris has one (for noting my "through" for "threw" error in yesterday's comments) and dowingba and Nicole each have five (for completing the writing assignment — I need to finish mine so that I can read theirs!).

Sound like fun? Good. If it stops being fun, or, indeed, turns out simply to be stupid, the Brownie Points will go away. But I hope they'll be fun.

On this day at foldedspace.org

2005Lazy Weekend   Problems with Netflix. Bad movies about Africa. Dinner with Mac and Pam. Life goes on.

2004The Blood of a Squirrel   Greetings it is I Simon. I kill squirrels.

2002Wednesday Evening, 9 p.m.   The West Wing starts. The credits roll. "Oooh. Guest starring Joanna Gleason," I say. "You know who she is, right?"

On 03 October 2003 (10:49 AM), Rich said:

Do I get an additional one point for noting that you forgot to include me as someone who has already earned a zillion points for taking you to the WWC, and therefore am WAY ahead of downing, nicole, and kris? So I actually should have a zillion and one jdbp's (short for "JD brownie points").

Now a zillion and two jdbp's for coining a really superb acronym.

On 03 October 2003 (11:05 AM), Dana said:

I think Tammy and I ought to get a bunch of extras for all our verbose contributions =)

(Yes, I'm just kidding, in case you couldn't tell...)

On 03 October 2003 (11:27 AM), Tammy said:

Yeah! what dana said!

On 03 October 2003 (11:43 AM), dowingba said:

You left out "been" between "I've" and "having". Does that count as a typo?

On 03 October 2003 (11:53 AM), J.D. said:

Dowingba gets a brownie point. :(

Brownie points for typos are going to add up fast, aren't they?

On 03 October 2003 (12:47 PM), Denise said:

Too bad they aren't retroactive to September 29th....then I'd have five jdbp's. :(

On 03 October 2003 (12:58 PM), Aimee said:


Does this seem necessary, J.D., when your website has generated so much response in the past sans Brownie Points?? This is seems to me to be a post-secondary school cry for authority and affirmation, J.D.

Yours (as always),

On 03 October 2003 (01:13 PM), J.D. said:



Certainly not what I intended.

I just thought it would be a fun way to a) eliminate those damn spelling mistakes typos and b) reward those who contribute this site. It was spurred by Kris finding yet another instance of "through" for "threw", and by Nicole and dowingba taking time to write stories.

I don't look at it as affirmation for me, but as affirmation for you, the reader.

But, then, like I said, if this seems stupid (and too Aimee, it does), it'll go away, as most stupid things do.

My goal here was fun. Fun. FUN!

On 03 October 2003 (01:32 PM), Dana said:


and too Aimee should probably be and to Aimee...

Yes, they'll add up fast, there's no really good way to track them, you're going to end up with random people showing up and pointing things out every once in awhile and so you'll end up with a bunch of us regulars with a bunch of points, and a bunch of random strangers with a few.

I think it's a bit dopey, frankly, but it's your blog, so whatever. I wasn't planning on paying much attention, frankly. Shrug.

On 03 October 2003 (02:03 PM), tammy said:

I too am not into the brownie points but there does seem to be a lot of obvious interest in it. What does light my fire is the story thing. Brownie points or not it's interesting to see what people come up with.

And dana don't say it's dopey. That could hurt his feelings. He was "egged on" by some of his readers ya know.

On 03 October 2003 (02:32 PM), Dana said:

And dana don't say it's dopey. That could hurt his feelings.

I normally wouldn't use dopey without qualification, but I know JD, and I know probably won't hurt is feelings and, if it did, he'd let me know and I'd be able to apologize. Shrug.

On 03 October 2003 (02:34 PM), Denise said:

1. I think it was stated that jdbp's don't count in posts, just for the original entry.

2. For those who don't like the brownie point system, don't spoil it for everyone else.

Two more hours and I'll be free for two whole days! Yippee!

On 03 October 2003 (02:38 PM), J.D. said:

No, no, Tammy. If it's dopey, it's dopey! (Though I prefer the term stupid.) My feelings are not hurt.

However, since there is apparently an element of stupidity (or dopiness) in the whole thing, I'll simply keep a private tally rather than posting a tracking board for the entire world to see.

It's supposed to be fun, damn it! :)

On 03 October 2003 (02:50 PM), Denise said:

J.D. - I would suggest you post it, or those of us that want to know where we stand will be constantly bugging you for the totals....and it seems to me that you have enough emails to return as it is, eh?

Plus, who couldn't like something that has 'brownie' in the title?

On 03 October 2003 (03:01 PM), Tiffany said:

Too much pressure!! Now I will think about my comments even more before posting.

On 03 October 2003 (03:44 PM), dowingba said:

I think it's a good idea. I'd feel guilty about recieving a prize for the otherwise jerkish practise of pointing out typos though...

(And yes, when practice is a verb it's supposed to be spelled with an S; a rule nobody seems to adhere to anymore.)

On 03 October 2003 (04:00 PM), tammy said:

However, Dowingba, I do believe they still adhere to the old rule 'I before e except after c' As in your word receive above. "about recieving"

On 03 October 2003 (04:33 PM), Dave said:

Actually, my Websters lists "practise" as an alternate form of "practice", but says nothing about "practise" being the preferred verb form of practice. In fact, "practise" didn't warrant it's own entry. Is this an issue where we Americans took a shortcut on the way to the dictionary?

On 03 October 2003 (04:44 PM), J.D. said:

As long as we're being tangential, let me mention my favorite non-American English word (so far): twee, which means (I believe) small and cute. A fluffy kitten could be twee, for example, or your three-year-old in his Joseph, Father of God costume. (Why is it Mary, Mother of God, but not Joseph, Father of God? Sexism?)

I'm sure there are other equally fun non-American English words, and I don't just mean alternates like "torch" for "flashlight" or "boot" for "trunk". I mean words that I don't even know exist until I hear Alan Titschmarsh use them on Ground Force.

On 03 October 2003 (05:13 PM), Joel said:

Actually, I think Joseph's official title is "Cuckold of God."

On 03 October 2003 (05:20 PM), Kris said:

I think we should all start using "fancy" in the British sense, as in, "fancy a beer?", to mean: could you go for a beer? Just think, it could start with Jd's blog and sweep the internet, then the nation, next, the world. The British will think they've started it, but we'll know the truth (Truth).

While I'm posting, I must say I don't really fancy the idea of the brownie points. Sorry, hon'.

On 03 October 2003 (06:52 PM), Tammy said:

Jd you could track it on the forum.

On 03 October 2003 (07:02 PM), Tammy said:

Oh and JD technically Mary should not be referred to as the mother of God either. She was the mother of Jesus. Joseph is not called the Father of Jesus because God is Jesus father.

On 03 October 2003 (08:15 PM), dowingba said:

And because Joseph had nothing to do with the conception of Jesus (ie: immaculate conception). Mary, however, gave birth to Jesus.

On 03 October 2003 (08:18 PM), dowingba said:

And yes, I noticed my "i before e" blunder just after I posted that comment. I am the absolute worst at adhering to that rule mostly because the rule makes no sense. Practise as the preferred verbial spelling is how I learned it personally, and "practice" used as a verb just looks plain wrong to me. I'd like to point out though that the way I used to the word in the statement above may just not be a verb. Isn't "pointing" the verb in that statement and "practise" is in fact a noun? Gah, head exploding.

On 04 October 2003 (06:21 AM), Tammy said:

Ok Dowingba lets take a look at this sentence. I haven't taught school since '96 but when I did I taught English. Lets see what I remember.

I'd feel guilty about recieving a prize for the otherwise jerkish practise of pointing out typos though...

I(subject)would feel(verb) guilty(adjective)

So that means practice is a noun in that sentence.

On 04 October 2003 (06:30 AM), dowingba said:

I(subject) concur(verb).

On 04 October 2003 (06:30 AM), dowingba said:

"jerkish" in that sentence, though, would be an adjective, not a verb.

On 04 October 2003 (07:13 AM), tammy said:

Yes as it describes the noun practise. The reason I made it a verb was because of the word otherwise. If Otherwise is an adverb it has to modify a verb. I couldn't figure out what that verb would be. So maybe my problem lies with counting otherwise as an adverb. I bet it's an adjective too. Yep I get it. It is. Otherwise and jerkish are both adjectives describing practice. Thanks for pointing that out. Somebody listened in English class I can tell.

On 04 October 2003 (08:29 AM), dowingba said:

No, "otherwise" is an adverb. If it modifies a verb, adjective, or another adverb, then it's an adverb.

On 04 October 2003 (09:56 AM), tammy said:

I know that. But I don't believe it is modifying the word jerkish. I think it's describing practice which is a noun. It's a jerkish practice. It's an otherwise practice or alternative practice.

On 04 October 2003 (10:01 AM), Tammy said:

There is another problem. The word out is a preposition, not an adjective.

On 04 October 2003 (01:57 PM), J. Gingerich said:

For once I had a minute to read JD's post. As I look through the comments (funny though they are) I have to wonder...

What the fuck do you people do all day?!


On 04 October 2003 (10:52 PM), dowingba said:

I work the breakfast, lunch and dinner shifts every day at work, while doing a wedding once a week until 3am (EST), and then breakfast, lunch, and dinner again the next day ad infinitum. What do you do all day?

On 04 October 2003 (11:02 PM), dowingba said:

JD, not sure what you did to the design of this site, but it looks like absolute crap on Mozilla Firebird and 1.3. Looks fine on IE though...

On 23 June 2004 (02:31 PM), Maria said:

How much time do you guys have on your hands?!
'God walked among men' implies that Jesus WAS God - well the incarnation of God, made from flesh, but not God's actaul son. Jesus is referred to as God's own son because Jesus was a man, and all mankind are God's children.
If you believe in God, that is.
And not all british people say 'do you fancy a drink?' in that sense - only the english and welsh.

On 24 June 2004 (12:37 PM), Maria said:

Also, Kris, before you start using the word 'fancy' in the 'british sense', thinking it will sweep the word JUST cos Jd used it on his 'blog', maybe you should think about what the english think of the americans...
theyre fat, stupid, up themselves wankers who think theyre the only ones in the world.

On 24 June 2004 (12:45 PM), Johnny said:

Fortunately for us, at least they have manners enough to keep their opinions where they belong.

On 24 June 2004 (03:19 PM), tammy said:

Hey, Maria I doubt you know that by trying to make a dig at Kris you have just slammed JD's wife. Hmmm. I don't think he'll take too kindly to that. Maybe you'd better stay away from here.

On 24 June 2004 (04:03 PM), Anthony said:

See, Maria, the AWL (Almighty Web Lord) of this blog has a loyal following, and many who frequent this site are his abject subjects since they depend on his good graces for the existence of their own blogs. So if some newbie comes in here and starts talking smart, they might get mad. JD won't mind, though. Also, don't mind Tammy. She is rude, too. Like you.

Is "cos" a cute little British abbreviation for because?

Let's "sweep the world" with that one too, cos I fancy it.

On 24 June 2004 (04:32 PM), SI said:

I am a Brit and I would like to add my opinion on some of the points raised here (even though everyone else will have moved on to the next post). First of all, Scots (of which I am one) also use the word "fancy" as in "fancy a pint?" (of beer). Similarly, if I find someone physically attractive, I might say that I "fancy" them. I would not describe something that is simply cute as being twee, however. A kitten per se is not twee, for example, but a kitten in a jacket might be twee. I can't think where the difference lies: I think tweeness requires an element of affectation, perhaps.

On the subject of Jesus' parentage, under Scots law there is a rebuttable presumption that the husband of the gestative mother is the father. In other words, Joseph would be deemed to be Jesus' father unless evidence existed to prove otherwise.

I think the brownie points idea is fabulous. It's about time grammatical (sorry JD - typographical) sticklers were rewarded. On the subject of practise/practice, I was taught that the way to remember it is to think of advise/advice.

I think Joel deserves several brownie points for "Cuckold of God".

On 24 June 2004 (05:23 PM), tammy said:

Wouldn't you say that calling somebody rude is rude? Especially when that somebody is your elder?

On 24 June 2004 (08:28 PM), Anthony said:

Calling someone rude is the epitome of rude.

On 26 June 2004 (04:36 PM), SI said:

On the subject of cute abbreviations, do Americans use the word comfy?

On 26 June 2004 (09:01 PM), Anthony said:

They do.

On 11 July 2004 (03:37 PM), Maria said:

yep 'cos' is a word for because. go on, sweep the world for all i care, it may bring a litle joy to someone's life.(oh by the way congratulations on that 'i fancy it' joke - very clever)
sorry about my comment on americans. i like them really. i wrote that comment when i was, er, drunk, yes, thats it!
also, sorry for, ahem, "slamming" jd's wife. o and thank you anthony for sticking up for me, i wont mind tammy.
and again generally sorry to you all for being a nosy prick, i have no idea how on earth i came by this sight or why the hell i even bothered putting my useless boring opinions on it, but there we are and id just like to clear that up. i really should get out more.

On 04 October 2004 (05:26 AM), kmr said:

Let's get it straight here Dowingba and Tammy. It's "i before e except after c, or when sounded like "a" as in neighbour and weigh." So the word is "receiving" And, yes, I'm Canadian so neighbour is spelled with a "u".
PS Tammy, I miss your blog....

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