Because it’s 3:19 a.m. and my Facebook feed is already full of declarations of rank despair …

… I’ll share this Facebook post someone whose opinion I trust mightily wrote last night:

Dear People Flipping Out,

I’ve mentioned this before, but about a decade ago I was in a sabermetric-oriented simulated baseball league with someone I’ll call “Sate Nilver.” I eventually quit that league because no one could defeat “Nilver,” because “Nilver” cared about nothing but being correct. His assiduous devotion to developing models that could defeat your models sapped all the fun out of simulating baseball games with a group of stats nerds. Now, sleep easy, because tomorrow he will “win” again.

I believe in the guy who believes in this guy like he was my son or possibly myself.

50 comments on this post.
  1. parrot:

    most audacious move in chess … the opening move resignation gambit …

  2. SEK:

    Actually, I still think the Bishop’s gambit is still the most audacious opening. (At least, I never won a damn thing when I played it.)

  3. rea:

    E. g., Ficher-Panno, Palma de Mallorca 1970: (1) c4, Black resigns.

  4. parrot:


  5. parrot:

    star wars style?

  6. Hogan:

    Speaking of audacious . . .

  7. parrot:

    heh … i flubbed it …

  8. ploeg:

    Monty Python style. (OK, Devious, don’t move!)

  9. Fred:

    It would be helpful to actually go vote rather than just resorting to faith that everyone else is actually going to vote.

  10. Dr.KennethNoisewater:

    Nilver had Obama’s chances at 86% last I checked. I feel ok.

  11. Dr.KennethNoisewater:

    From BJ:

    So… final prediction time! Nate Silver at 538 calls it 315.2 for President Obama, 92% chance of winning.

  12. Malaclypse:

    Up to 91.6% now. I’ll be running up the score post-work.

  13. Dr.KennethNoisewater:

    I sent in my ballot weeks ago, so today is anti-climatic for me, on the actual voting front.

  14. SEK:

    I voted three weeks ago. I’m not discouraging anyone to go to the polls so much as encouraging them not to have heart attacks every thirteen minutes.

  15. Dr.KennethNoisewater:

    There’s nothing left to do but wait for the inevitable impeachment trial.

  16. BigHank53:

    Where’s the angst in that?

  17. Warren Terra:

    Everyone knows there’s no such thing as .2 of an electoral vote, so Silver is obviously just making stuff up.

  18. Malaclypse:

    While I don’t mean to trivialize that possibility, I must admit that the idea of Joe Biden as President does not, in fact, fill me with gloom.

  19. Warren Terra:

    Either way, right? I mean, even if (FSM forfend!) Romney wins, really think they’ll let Obama makie it through another three months without an impeachment to remember them by?

  20. Cody:

    A Joe Biden Presidency would be great for the comedy shows…

    Though a Mitt Romney one probably wouldn’t disappoint either. Obama, sadly, is too good to say a lot of stupid stuff.

  21. Cody:

    The guy who ruins your games is always the smartest one… for some reason. That’s why no one likes smart people!

    I think I understand Republicans finally.

  22. Mumbly Joe:

    I believe that’s what’s known as the “French Defense” (too easy)

  23. Malaclypse:

    More from Joe.

  24. Incontinentia Buttocks:

    Just wait until the dreaded Whitey Tape appears!!! ;-)

  25. NBarnes:

    I voted-by-mail last week specifically so that I could spend today in spectator mode.

  26. Not Nate Silver:

    I am glad to see an acknowledgement that Silver’s good reputation is due to his record (which itself may be mathematically analyzed) of correct predictions, as opposed to chanting that his use of mathematical models cannot be approached by an anecdotal approach, without bothering to ask whether that mathematical approach is valid by analyzing its outcomes (which can involve using anecdotes as treating them as a form of data).
    2. I would point out that a true nerd would sneer at this as mere anecdote. Why does this status update not include a real mathematical analysis of Silver’s actual record in fantasy baseball instead of these impressions?
    3. A truly true nerd would sneer at your reference to baseball. “Sports are suboptimal. What is this entertainment in the context of living in human society that you speak of? It perplexes me. Of course, I post absurdly stupid and derivate memes online, but that is different because it just is that’s why!”

  27. SEK:

    First, a true nerd would point out that you had no “1.”

    Second, a true nerd would point out that sabermetrics is a valid means of evaluating human performance, perhaps even one of the best, given the historical and current data-sets available.

    Third, if you think all I post are “memes” you haven’t read 99 percent of what I’ve written, and if you think making fun of me for posting about popular culture is an insult, well, you haven’t read 99 percent of the comments I’ve written on the posts I’ve written.

    So basically, fourth, you’re just a drive-by asshole. Everyone else here knows that I write things that can be proven correct or vilely otherwise, and that when people investigate my claims, there tends not to be much in the way of vileness or otherwise.

  28. Craigo:

    You think you’re joking, but I’ve already seen that sentiment in Facebook thread. For srs this time.

  29. Dr.KennethNoisewater:

    I wouldn’t put anything past these freaks.

  30. Different John:

    Possibly I’m wrong, but I think you misread that one, SEK – the nerd was writing about himself posting absurdly stupid and derivative memes, not about you writing them, and it seems to me pretty clear the nerd isn’t supposed to be you. The one person it might conceivably be is the facebook poster, but I don’t read it that way either, since the point is to distinguish the truly true nerd from the poster.

  31. John (not McCain):

    Yeah, but a Joe Biden presidency would be Carol Burnett Show funny. A Mitt Romeny presidency would be Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf funny.

  32. not not nate:

    Yes, SEK, you are mostly right. But on the down side, occasionally excessively touchy.

  33. not not nate:

    I think we got some hints as to the identity of the poster.

  34. BigHank53:

    Mitt would be more like Sylvia Plath where’s-the-oven funny, if you ask me.

  35. actor212:

    To periphrase a meme about Obama that passed around a few years ago…

    “He got this.”

  36. The Dark Avenger:

    Q to QL3

  37. Davis X. Machina:

    The French is 1.e4 e6.

    And is there anything French funnier than this?

    Ossuaire de Douaumont.

    Cheese-eating surrender monkeys indeed.

  38. DrDick:


  39. DrDick:

    Sam Wang has him at 99.5%.

  40. parrot:

    i’ve concluded flipflop Rmoney is actually leonard zelig … the onion confirms my dot connecting …

  41. Steve LaBonne:

    Thirded. Pretty much the only good thing about the voting process in Ohio.

  42. Captain Splendid:

    Kinda hoping the Romney loss leads to enough internecine warfare in the R ranks that they might be a little too busy and divided this time to make a proper go of it.

  43. DrDick:

    Here in Montana, we have open absentee voting, same day registration, and election day is a state holiday, which sort of balances out the voter ID law that the local Rethugs pushed through to disenfranchise the Indians and college students. The former provisions were put in place back when Democrats were in running the state.

  44. Keaaukane:

    Q to KL1. Beam me up!!

  45. SEK:

    Like you don’t already know that.

  46. N__B:

    What’s the over/under date on when a prominent Repub says they lost because, you know, MORMON?

  47. SEK:

    Good God damn, I’m an idiot … but it’s not like everyone didn’t already know that either.

  48. The Dark Avenger:

    Hiram Johnson put the initiative, the referendum in the California Constitution(with the help of the State Senate and Assembly) with the explicitly stated goal of making it impossible for a Democrat to become governor. It almost worked, there have been only 4 Democratic governors since his reign in Sacramento.

  49. Halloween Jack:

    My scanometer has him at umpteen skadillion googleplexes to the negatron. Wait… *flicks dial with finger* It really says “pretty darn good.” I’ll take it.

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