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Pilpul can find you even on the internet...
polydad
Snarfed from wilperegrine:
It must be finals time.

3. Using your understanding of how sugyot are formed and how they work, create a small sugya, inventing texts as needed to fill in the pattern that you want your sugya to have. Your topic can be serious or whimsical, possibly a matter of law or of ethics. (28 points)

Mishnah: When you hear the shliach tzibor speak a bracha before a minyan, having said amen, you become yotzei for that bracha.

Gemara: Rabi Hodo ben Reiza said: One who phones into the minyan remotely can also be yotzei. (This is the practice at a certain synagogue, wherein one who is not present may dial the sanctuary and hear the words spoken before the minyan.) Said Rabi Robin ben Erez in the name of Rav Conner ben Mendel: This is also true of the internet. But his student Rabi Heather bat Yochevet asked: The whole internet? Bishlama one can become yotzei through Skype, for When you hear and on Skype one can both hear and see. Eleh on Twitter and Facebook, one can only read. In the days of Rav Jacobs there was no Facebook but instead fax machines, and he determined that one cannot be yotzei from a fax machine. Facebook and Twitter are like a fax machine, Skype like a telephone. Asked Rabi Robin, Is all hearing the same? Go out and see—two long-range spaceships left Earth with minyanim aboard. Both were damaged by meteors (Rabi Matthew the Nuisance says: Attacked by space pirates) such that some crew members died and neither ship had a minyan. Because long ago the Chabad of Houston transmitted its daily brachot into space, the captains had access to recordings on subsonic frequencies. On the ship of Captain Hillel, they said amen and were yotzei. But on the ship of Captain Shammai, they did not say amen, nor barchu nor the kaddish. Why so? Captain Shammai says: When all in the minyan long ago received their shares in the World to Come, how can he be yotzei who says amen? To this day, the crew of Shammai do not respond to the minyanim of Houston. But the crew of Hillel—are they yotzei? It is like a king of flesh and blood who sends a messenger to his son in exile, to ask him to return and take his rightful place at his side. Though the messenger travel many years to find him, is his joy lessened by the intervening time? It’s obvious! At the moment that he hears the news, his joy is as if he had been present when the king his father sent the messenger to him, as it is written: They shall hear and be glad. Said Rabi Ben bar Bat: If nine stand in the room, and one who is not

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polydad
I have identified that I am in an ocean, and thus that the appropriate activity is swimming.

While I sink like a rock, I *can* swim, and fairly well; it just takes a lot of energy to keep me afloat.

The ocean in question is small-town politics. I am just starting to learn this kind of socialization, and what I've observed so far is largely fear-driven, which is not a style of interaction I like very much. I need to learn to acknowledge other people's fears without either agreeing with the fears or indicating my disagreement to the fearful person, all without being untruthful.

Metaphorically, it feels like dancing ballet in full plate armor.