Have your pressing issues decided by Famous Minor Television Personality John Hodgman, Certified Judge. If you'd like John Hodgman to solve your pressing issue, please contact us HERE.
Judge John Hodgman decides the case of a couple who disagree: do parentheses have a place in fiction?
Recorded live at The Talent Show in Brooklyn with guest bailiff Elna Baker.
This week's case, To Tree or Not to Tree.
Jason and Brandi disagree: Jason believes that Christmas decorations should not be put up before Christmas Eve, keeping the spirit of Advent. Brandi argues that they should go up in the first week of December, so that the decorations may be enjoyed longer. Only one man can settle the dispute.
This week, the case of The Lion's Den.
Greg and Shannon disagree: is their extra room a den? A dispute over room name definitions spirals into a dispute about the underpinnings of all male-female marriages. Only one man can settle it.
This week, the case of The Lovely Couple.
A dispute between newlyweds: husband Thomas argues that physical attractiveness is an essential component of romance. Wife Kiersten argues that it is irrelevant. Only one man can decide who's right.
This week, the case of the Long-Necked Custody Battle.
Best Friends Katie and Meghan went halfsies on a robotic giraffe while vacationing abroad. For years, it entertained friends in their shared college apartment. Now Meghan is headed for a PhD at Stanford, and Katie is staying home and pursuing an advanced degree in illustration. Each wants the other to have the giraffe, as comfort in challenging times. Is Jeffrey the Giraffe staying in Atlanta, or is he headed to Palo Alto. Only one man can decide.
This week on the Judge John Hodgman Podcast, a dispute between friends. Foy argues that breaking the fourth wall ruins film and theater. His friend Matt disagrees. Only Judge John Hodgman can decide.
While we're mentioning mentions on great blogs... our friend Mark Frauenfelder was kind enough to give a mention to Judge John Hodgman on Boing Boing the other day. Reactions are generally excellent, except for one guy, named "Weatherman," who writes: I'm a big fan of Hodgeman, but any show ranked with Sound of Young America immediately shoots to the bottom of my list. That has to be one of the worst shows on NPR, and I'm including Prairie Home Companion. Thanks, fella!
This week on the Judge John Hodgman Podcast, a dispute between friends. One insists that machine guns are a type of robot - they perform a difficult and onerous task, are programmable and he wouldn't want to fight them. The other demurs, and has asked Judge Hodgman for a final ruling.
In episode two of the Judge John Hodgman podcast, Judge Hodgman settles a dispute between a married couple. The wife says their kitchen sink's built-in dispenser should house dish soap. The husband argues that it should hold hand soap. Only one is correct.
(Thanks for our graphic to Steve Wolfhard.)
Judge John Hodgman was due to render a decision in the upcoming episode of Jordan, Jesse GO!, but because of severe illness, explained below, he has chosen to issue a written rather than oral decision.
Ilia writes in:
Do my boyfriend and I have an obligation to let his mother, brother, and two small yappy dogs stay at our (600 sq. ft.) place during the holidays?
Boyfriend says yes but a few Christmas' ago when we let them and their dogs stay one of her dogs was senile, had no teeth, and wore a diaper and when I tried to change it she tried to bite me. I say get a hotel.
Judge Hodgman responds:
First, let me apologize for not being able to provide you with a live answer, but I am very sick. I have lymph and blood draining from my left ear due to an infection. (How are you?)
But do not be concerned about my lymph and blood loss. Even with a low-lymph supply, I am able to quickly and fairly render judgment.
From an ethical point of view: you are not required to house your boyfriend's menagerie of relations and their dogs, no matter how small and yappy they all may be. This is, of course, a standard and accepted obligation of marriage. But you are not married: you are merely living in sin. If he wants to force his family on you for the holidays, I say he can come up with a ring first.
From a practical point of view, you may still be tempted to offer them lodging, insofar as it is the nice thing to do and will keep the peace between you, your boyfriend, and his family. But this is only putting a diaper on a dying, senile dog, as we say in Hollywood. It is a matter of physics, not of opinion: 600 square feet is not enough to house you all.
It may suit your boyfriend to deny this reality in order to avoid conflict with his own mother; but it is your job as his life companion and sinful co-habitant to help him grow up and explain to his family what any sane adult could see: five sane adults and two dogs cannot share such a space comfortably.
If THEY resist this logic, you will know that they are insane, but I suspect you know this already. Under no circumstances are you required to house insane people--unless you are married.
But never mind the ethical and practical implications: what's the classy thing to do? I'd suggest apologizing for not being able to accommodate them and then buying them two rooms in a clean, dog friendly, inexpensive hotel or motel nearby. It may hurt to spend that kind of money, but consider the cost of doing business as a sane, unmarried adult.
That is all.