So how did you find the Straight Dope?

I’m from a small town in Wyoming. When I was thirteen, I bought a Straight Dope book, not realizing that it was a column in a newspaper. Since then, I was hooked (my favorite line was about the impossibility [at the time] to lengthen one’s penis. In Cecil’s words “if you were equipped with a ding instead of a dong” there was little that could be done.).

Around here (still Wyoming), the Straight Dope is very, very obscure. I haven’t met anyone who has ever heard of it.

Eventually, when I got internet access, I looked up the Straight Dope. Thread-spotting that week was about Wally’s attempt at cyber-sex. That was how I came to find the message boards.

So, how did you find the Straight Dope?

I had never heard of the column or the books. None of the papers in my area carry it.
I found the MB from a friend that used to work here. I don’t think he ever registered, but he knew I liked little know facts, and there are pleanty of them here.

I was sitting at work one morning and a friend told me it was a good site to pass the time and learn some interesting facts. I liked it so much I basically don’t ever leave the message boards now.

I used to hang around the Grey Labyrinth alot when at one time there was a post that linked to this message board, about a thread where tiny cow explained what the nick names of people tasted like. That was a weird thread and got me hooked to thr SDMB.

I spend a lot of time hanging out in the reference section in bookstores…I have a voracious appetite for mindless information and still read books by Feldman, Poundstone, et al.
The first time I encountered the first of Cecil’s books, it brought the roof down at my house. The Dope has been a staple in my family ever since.
As far as these boards, I stumbled in while surfing.

I used to go to a site called, they posted a link to Straightdope. I spent a couple of months going through all the archived columns. After exausting all the columns I stumbled across the message board. Haven’t been back to in a long time.

Bought the first book while stationed in Germany and loved it. Kept on buying the books as they came out until one happened to mention that they were online. Popped on over to this site and lurked for a long time and then registered.

I’ve lurked through many other message boards but none compare to this one.

I saw the TV show during my sophomore year at college. Mike Lukas (sp?) is the bomb. I had to fight my roommates away from the remote to tune in A&E
70.3% of the way to a 1k!

I started reading Cecil’s column in 1985 in the Washington D. C. edition of “The City Paper.” I then stumbled across his first book. When I bought my first computer it seemed like a sure bet that there would be a web-site. Here I am.

How did I find the Straight Dope? Jester. We used to talk online every night back in the summer and around August, he started taking a reeeeeaaaaallllly long time to reply to me. I asked him what was up and he said he was on the message board and sent me the link to a thread.
I got an account because I wanted to try to really piss him off, but I ended up liking it here. Go figure.

How did I find the StraightDope?

Refreshing, with a wonderful witty banter that satisfied both the intellectual side and inner child. The story composition could have been stronger but the general premises’ failings are supported by an extremely strong and diverse ensemble cast.

The main sub-plot (is the God ‘Cecil’ real?) also petered out somewhat - though this was obscured by the appearance of The Invisible Pink Unicorn - but the direction Lyn took more than compensated. We were spellbound, flowing from Creationism debate to Lesbian Orgies smoothly.

Popculture references abounded providing that extra touch of layered-reality, swinging from Buffy quotes to presidential election campaigns (and campaigns with campaigns). Characters also expounded opinions on who the most sexually attractive cartoon characters were and debated the merits of The USS Enterprise against a Star Wars Imperial Star Destroyer: a graphic and all-too accurate metaphor of the stubborn loyalties that prevail within our cultures without the need for substance.

Then just as we’re becoming comfortable and settling in, came the sudden twists. Yes, the Moved Threads that had us chasing subplots in a manner that briefly left you questioning the scriptwriter’s sanity. Characters were introduced and harshly cut, mirroring life’s uncertainty and death’s unpredictability.

Diversity meets on a common intellectual ground without the snobby pretensions: truly an epic for anyone.
I give it 2.4 thumbs up (it’s for everyone in the nuclear family).

Same here.

So I’m hanging around in the reference section at a book store in a mall in Fort Smith, Arkansas, c. 1992. I saw the Straight Dope books there on the shelf, and I leafed through the biggest one (the first one, in case you didn’t know). I was hooked! I sprung the $14.95 and I’ve been hooked ever since.

A buddy of mine forwarded me a copy of one of Cecil’s answers to a question. I asked him where he had found it and he sent me the link for the Straight Dope main page. I read most, if not all, of the articles, archives, looked through “Wierd Earl’s,” and finally hit the link to the SDMB. I lurked for a while, not very long, though. I decided to sign up and started posting.

Not long there after, Coldfire and I think it was TVeblen were called up to be mods. I thought “Wow. They must go through moderators pretty quick.”

I don’t post as much as when I first started, but I would post my opinion to just about any thread I had even the slightest connection to. Now, I think a lot more before I post. I stick to MPSIMS, IMHO, ATMB, and if I’m feeling uppity, the PIT. Once in a great while, I’ll respond in GQ. I have to think too much at work to tax my brain at GD, plus, from what I’ve heard about it, it just scares me.

How did I find The Straight Dope?

I found it very informative!

Oh, you mean what lead me to start reading it? I first started reading TSD in the L.A. Reader around 1984 or 1985.

Sorry. Spelling is also affected before caffeine ingestion. :o

I also started by watching the TV incaration. I loved that show ~ smart and funny. Friends who lived in Chicago said, ‘Duh. It’s an article in The Reader.’ Fast forward a couple years and a move from IL to FL, I’m feeling homesick and I remember The Reader. I check if it was online, it was. I’m happy. Website provides link to SDMB. I’m now in bliss. Well, maybe not “bliss”, I really enjoy reading the great post everyone makes. Thanks for the good stuff!


I have never read any of the Straight Dope books or newspaper columns. An online friend of mine who lurks here sent me threads here every now and again, and then one time when the message board I usually frequented was temporarily down I got bored and so read a few threads of my own accord, and then registered…

Much the same as poohpah. The very first Straight Dope book, with its bobbing pigeon heads, sperm trees and other wonders, kept me howling. I own the whole collection and as sought out the site as soon as I had access.

Sharing with intelligent people gifted with both insight and humor is tremendously addictive. If I had it available at home as well, it would be hard to do anything else. As it is, I come in to work early and stay late just to get a chance to persuse the boards.

[Mr. Spock imitation]
[/Mr. Spock imitation]

I originally read about the Straight Dope in a Yahoo magazine. Sounded interesting, so I checked it out. I loved it, and went through most of columns. Being somewhat dense, I forgot to bookmark it, and couldn’t remember the name of the site to come back to it.

About a year (?) later, I was browsing the The Useless Pages and found a link to it in the trivia section.

I recognized the name, and came back. A few weeks later, I thought I’d see what the message boards were like, and the rest is history.

I used to work with Demise, and apparently I struck him as a thoughtful and intelligent person (he doesn’t know me very well) and he told me I should check it out. I had passed by the site before, but never really went into it much. Never knew there were books, may have seen the column before, but didn’t follow up.