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I've seen that usually a number of 30 comments calls for removal, why not this time?

Please move to chat the extremely long trails of comments posted under this question and its main answers.

  • In addition to my answer here, can I also ask a favor of the mods or another 20k+ user? Because @thedrake spent an inordinate amount of time on researching the axe clipart, but didn't have the 10 rep on EL&U to post an answer, he asked me to unprotect the question. I did that, he posted, and then I reprotected. The problem is now my username appears in the protection banner. This seems self-serving and protectionist to anyone who Sidney's know the history of the Q. Can someone else un- and re-protect the Q? – Dan Bron Jul 3 '17 at 13:43
  • @DanBron done, the post is now protected by mig. Happy to be of service. – Mari-Lou A Jul 3 '17 at 14:51
  • @Mari-LouA Thank you very much! – Dan Bron Jul 3 '17 at 15:16
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    @tchrist status completed, but my mod flag is still lying around; sad and lonely, questioning life, contemplating covfefe. – NVZ Jul 3 '17 at 18:51
  • @Josh I'm not sure what answer you would like here. – tchrist Jul 3 '17 at 19:10
  • @Josh let it stay status completed; deleting it is not necessary. – NVZ Jul 4 '17 at 7:34
  • This wasn't the original question, this was never a request to begin with. – Mari-Lou A Jul 4 '17 at 11:18
  • @Mari-LouA -Yes, but is was understood as such, amen to that. – user66974 Jul 4 '17 at 12:59
  • @Josh Thanks. And if you do post an answer on the "alluring" question, which now has a bounty, don't delete it, unless it is horribly wrong. Do me this favour will you? – Mari-Lou A Jul 13 '17 at 6:38
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    @Mari-LouA - unluckily I can't find interesting material on this issue, so I doubt I'll be able to post an answer. Sorry. – user66974 Jul 13 '17 at 14:05
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I agree, the comments are too long. They need to be pruned.

Can I make a request for a few specific comments to stay?

  • Anything I link to directly from the answer, because I'm citing them as evidence, and giving credit to their authors. This was a collaborative effort, and I'd really like future readers to know that¹.
  • Temporarily, anything from this comment by Mari-Lou and lower, as I haven't had time to incorporate them into my answer yet². I will do that when I return from my July 4th vacation. Should be done by the end of the week, then these comments (anything I don't link to from the answer) can also be archived.
  • And if I may ask a favor, this comment by AshleyZ and this one by Jaydles. They were real moments for me during the process of writing up the answer, and I'd like to keep those two comments as momentos.
  • For similar reasons, for gmauch's (the OP's) sake, I'd recommend retaining Kevin Workman's comment and his own under his question.

Thanks to everyone for both your support and your forbearance on this atypical question. It was an amazing experience and collaboration. In the most visceral, sincere sense, I've never felt more connected to this community. It was quintessential StackExchange. I won't soon forget it.


¹ For convenience (and because the answer is so long), a listing of these comments is given in the hidden link-references at the very end of this Meta-answer.

² I promise those changes will be my last, and I won't bump the question thereafter. You can believe me when I say I'm drained on this question too. But 3 users did some extraordinary work further tracing the ball, and I feel guilty not making them whole.

  • I rescued a couple of them; anything else you should be able to still find in the chatrooms. – tchrist Jul 3 '17 at 17:55
  • @tchrist Thank you very much! – Dan Bron Jul 3 '17 at 17:57
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    I imagine many of the 77,801 folks who viewed the question (and read the answer) experienced some of that joy as well. – anongoodnurse Jul 4 '17 at 3:49
  • May I say, I still find it so disappointing that the question remains locked (historic). The joy anongoodnurse spoke about is just not the same, knowing that users cannot express their satisfaction in upvotes. – Mari-Lou A Aug 10 '18 at 20:51
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    @Mari-LouA I am too but it’s nbd. Ultimately it’s a question about the provenance of a toy ball on a site I use to educate and/or entertain myself. I won’t lose sleep, and if others feel strongly, let them have their way. The only thing that makes me sad is I wanted to see the answer hit +1K, which it would have; a nice milestone missed. – Dan Bron Aug 10 '18 at 21:21
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There are now between 350 and 400 deleted comments, most of which I've moved to chat. I've rescued a few upon request, but do please feel free to continue your discussions in the allotted chatrooms.

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