Children's Book: The Farmer's Water Buckets: Children's Picture Book On Building Self Esteem

Children's Book: The Farmer's Water Buckets: Children's Picture Book On Building Self Esteem

4.56 out of 5

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Teach your children to celebrate their differences.

Being different is not easy, especially for young children. Sharing a story wherein the main characters celebrate being different is a very powerful tool for any child. This book shows a great example of looking at the bright side of things and aims to inspire children to embrace who they are with all their unique differences.

This inspiring tale tells the story of The Farmer's Water Buckets in which one of the watering buckets unfortunately breaks. From then on, the broken bucket feels sad about not living to the expectations of others and not being able to help the farmer like he used to before he got broke.

  • Will the cracked bucket manage deal with his difference?
  • Will the cracked bucket still help the farmer after being broken?
  • Can both buckets still be friends?

This book will help you teach your children the value of tolerance, cooperation and acceptance while celebrating their differences. It may help boost a child's self-esteem and realize that being different isn't a negative trait.

It reinforces the view that being different is a positive thing and encourages children to accept the fact that everyone is different.

The lesson of the book best expressed in this inspirational quote by Robert Tew.“Do not underestimate yourself by comparing yourself with others. It’s our differences that make us unique & Beautiful.” - Robert Tew

This well-written and inspiring story will help you to teach your children an important way of thinking with regard to tolerance, acceptance and celebrating diversity.

The Farmer's Water Buckets is an entertaining read before bedtime, with the whole family, or as self-reading for older children. Additionally, it is a great resource for teachers and counselors to share with individual students or in a class.

With vibrant, delightful illustrations and easy-to-digest lessons, children will learn of a life that is much happier and richer–in health, family, and friendship!

  • Gavin Larson

    I love their friendship. In every interaction you can tell that Larry is without a doubt the older bro. In the Suns game he hit Zu after he made a bucket and Zu's reaction was so funny. The next great NBA bromance.

  • Lesley Parisian

    I started little after they turned one I would sit them down on my lap or in front of me till they were like 2 I think. They understood more than I could ever imagine for their age. My way may not be the right way for his daughter but or anyone else's kids but how on earth are you going to know unless you try. I mean you got some kids that need rocked to sleep and such mine had to self soothe because they would flail around when you tried to hold them as babies to go to sleep. They are much more cuddly now that they are older. I like to ask or search when I'm having trouble because what I'm doing is not working. I have learnt of things I never knew or didn't understand how to make it work by asking for help and people giving their suggestions. Like I never would have thought about frozen bagels being used for teething until I read it in one of the books I was given. I know I lucked out with my guys because of their personalities but maybe something I say can make him think more and find something similar or completely different that will work for their children. I'm sure all and all they'll make the best decision for their family.

  • Jeromy Volkman

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  • Matilda Bauch

    > I'm not just saying don't hit them, I'm saying don't punish them in any way. Woah, woah, woah. This is a little extreme. In Nathaniel Branden's book "[The 6 Pillars of Self Esteem](https://www.amazon.co.uk/Pillars-Self-Esteem-Nathaniel-Branden/dp/0553374397)" the author explains that the best way to raise childrens' confidence is to give them clear and fairly enforced rules. By never punishing a child they become unsure about what actions are right and which ones are wrong which makes predicting the outcomes for actions more uncertain. With this effect in mind combined with other anecdotal evidence such as children who become insufferable because they're never told no, should prove quite easily that never punishing a child doesn't make sense.

  • Jermey Hilll

    Worked for a small bookstore owner on my block during the summers and parttime during the year from 14-16. Owner was an extremely erratic but massively intelligent Vietnam veteran. We spent most of the day just talking, since hardly anyone was ever in there. As time went on, our conversations grew richer and deeper, I'd stay for dinner sometimes ( he lived above it) and I always viewed him as a beautiful human. The last few months I was with him, he started educating me about property management, real estate, and gave me several books that I finished to impress him. He also supervised me when I passed my salesmans license test at 18. He passed away when I was 19, and left his store, all the belongings in it, and the entire 6 story building in park slope Brooklyn to me. There's 16 apartments in the building, and it paid for my college, as well as provide me with a 6 figure income for around 5 hours a week of work. Changed my life and the life of my future children. Never could have expected it.

  • Geoffrey Rodriguez

    Yes, I've had that happen to me many times (native English speaker learning Polish). Languages take a long time to master. Even if you know many base words, if you come across an idiom or slang where the word is used in a different way than the literal translation you may not recognize what's being said. Also just because you have a high reading level in Polish, that doesn't mean you can read the same level of text in German and understand everything. Start reading books for children and work your way up to more difficult reading levels. Most importantly, don't give up. If you have a desire to learn German, you can do it. Just keep trying every day. If you can, write in a journal or record yourself speaking after every study session. You can write/talk about things you've learned or just what you did that day in your life. This way you can see/hear the progress you are making instead of the things that you can't understand yet. Powodzenia.

  • Alfredo Gibson

    I call the doctor’s office to ask which day my doc will be in, he’s the old guy that only works one day a week. Just my luck, he’s on vacation this week and won’t be back until Tuesday of the following week. Ativan needs my own doc’s approval because it’s a schedule IV drug. Great, now I have so much anxiety and I am so sick from losing Eddie that I don’t care, I am gonna drink hard. I don’t keep liquor in the house, so I immediately go buy two of my favorite bottles. I was so sick emotionally and physically the next day that my boss told me I could take the rest of the week off. I drank, and drank, until it was suddenly Thursday night and I was so sick I couldn’t keep anything down and hadn’t eaten all week. What I really needed, right then, was a family member to just be my nurse for a day or so, spend some time with me and help me get better. I called my aunt who has dealt with her childrens’ addictions for a decade, I knew she would understand that I didn’t want anyone else to know. She agrees, she won’t say anything. Lying bitch. She shows up with an entourage, calls 911, and has me taken to the ER. So at this point I’m thinking, it’s simple, I will explain I ran out of Ativan and my doc won’t be back for 4 more days. They’ll give me 16 tiny mg of Ativan until then, right? Nope, my mom starts on a rampage that I’ve been taking all this Ativan etc. Finally they shoot me up with a huge dose, I don’t even know how much, and I am halfway gone. They start telling me that they are not going to give me any more Ativan unless I check myself into a special floor at the hospital. Ugh, okay sure. I figure I still have until Monday to be back to work, and how different can this floor be from the last time, right? Wrong. I was so fucked up on the Ativan that they had me sign here, sign that, initial here. I basically signed my rights away without any verbal explanation of what I was doing. I was holding a bag puking into it while signing. Next thing you know I am wheeled into a dark, grey, but otherwise normal looking hospital room. Except, there’s no TV, and the blinds are closed and shut behind glass. All I have is a clock staring me straight in the face. The nurse explains that they have to open the door and insert a keycard in the wall every 15 minutes to prove they’ve checked on me. I figure what the hell, sure, I just want to feel better. I continue to puke my guts out and the nurse tries giving me oral Ativan. Are you kidding? I am puking every 5 minutes. So they agree to get another IV going. Finally I stop puking and hope to sleep. Imagine this, you are trying to sleep but your child comes to your room every 15 minutes on the dot, opens the door, knocks once on the wall, then shuts the door. All. Night. Long. Would you be able to sleep? Fuck no. Plus I can hear multiple people wailing and screaming nonstop in the distance. So my anxiety just keeps going up. They up the Ativan dose. I feel a little better the next morning. Then I find out I can only have clothes. No phone, no tablet, no laptop. All of which I brought with me on the ambulance. WTF. Okay, as long as I can keep getting my Ativan until I am not in alcohol withdrawal, I guess I will live. I keep trying to keep liquids down and I am asking for my Ativan less and less. Later, the only doc on that floor takes me into an office for a very long mental exam, it was obviously a questionnaire but he veered off and was very conversational, I learned he was over 80 years old. It was extremely detailed, he asks me such questions as to all of my siblings’ birthday. I explain that my drinking is all related to my inability to cope with being rejected or cheated on by all my exes, and in passing I use the word “him” and it becomes apparent I’m gay and the temperament changes. People usually can’t tell, I just look like a geeky straight kid. Oh how I wish I just would have stuck with the term “ex”. I think I pass with flying colors, I love talking to people, I do it for a living. I didn’t hide anything, I thought I was just there to get better and leave. I honestly didn’t even take a look around the hallways or anything cuz I was so carefree. Way later that day I was able to keep food down fine, liquids fine, and I hadn’t asked for any Ativan in quite a while, which means I can go home and go back to my normal beer drinking, right? I walk to the desk and asked to begin my checkout process, regardless of whether or not it was against their better judgement. The nurse basically looked at me and laughed. “You can’t leave, the doctor hasn’t released you.” I’m like “I don’t care, what happens if I just walk out?”, then she explains that there are no doors, and my anxiety immediately hit a high note I have never felt before. I didn’t realize until then that I am basically in jail. This makes perfect sense now. My world starts spinning. I personally go ask the doc when he thinks I will be good to go. His words were “As soon as your vitals are normal you can go.” Phew! Obviously my vitals were not normal right then because I just realized for the first time in my life that I am trapped inside somewhere. So I didn’t bother having them check, I went right back to the nurse and asked to be started up on the dosing again. After some Ativan, Clonidine, and deep breathing in my room, I asked them to check. They looked a little confused but they did anyways. I was close, my blood pressure wasn’t quite there yet. More meds, more relaxation, and I tried again. Jackpot! Alright let me go please. The nurses again acted like I am dumb. That’s great honey, but you’re still not leaving. The doctor did some special thing that by law extends my review another three days or something, I don’t remember, my heart was in my throat at that point. I was literally in my room, looking for screws to remove the window with, trying to pry open vents, do anything but stare at the clock. Do you know what they had to do if you were bored? Coloring books. Bro I was so fucking shaky I couldn’t color a posterboard with a can of paint to save my life. I simply couldn’t breathe. They just kept dosing and dosing me with Ativan until the point where I was hallucinating audibly and visually. I lost count at 24mg/day in Ativan. I take only 4mg/day outside on even the worst day. I was trying to keep track but there’s about 5 different medication names they gave me that I can’t remember. At one point I think I remember I was yelling out loud in my hallucinatory state and they came in and gave me something different that made it so much worse. Time literally went backwards. I was hearing music, voices were talking to me and I could even make them say what I wanted. The three nurses at the desk, which was literally right next to my room, just sit on their phones and gossip all day, and at one point, their voices turned into my mom’s and two great aunts.

  • Tavares Wyman

    It's worth noting, first of all, that no poll can ever offer a full picture. There surprisingly isn't much data on the Japanese perspective of this topic, but the poll linked is fairly recent, and Famitsu polls have always been a reasonably good representation of Japanese opinion on games (especially with regards to JRPGs). So, no, it is no lie, but uncertainty comes with the nature of polling. Keep in mind the difference in perception across the globe. Mother 2 is the worst selling game in the series. That's a fact. Japan looks at Mother 1 far more favorably than the US. Saying M2 is the most popular title in Japan may be projecting US sensibilities on the country. There's no way of being certain. >And i see that title has been regularly released on Virtual Consoles... EarthBound has been rereleased more, but this isn't because its more popular. Neither M2 nor M1 were rereleased in Japan until 2012 and 2015 respectively. M3 was rereleased on Wii U exclusively because Wii U is the only platform with a GBA VC. Lets look at a timeline of Japanese Mother rereleases: 2012- M2 (Wii U) 2015- M1 (Wii U), M2 (3DS) 2016- M3 (Wii U) The VC rereleases don't conclusively prove that M3 was any less successful or well-received in Japan. >, while Mother 3 is still making the press drool. I don't exactly understand. What does the press have to do with this? And why do you have some sort of vendetta against the press? >Lucas was a mere DLC, while Ness was a Must in the latest Smash Bros game. 400.000 is not a success. Ness is a "must" because he is one of the original 12, not because he is some sort of cultural icon. In fact, he was going to be replaced by Lucas in Melee until the game was pushed back. Also, 400,000 for a game on a dead console seems fine to me. That Nintendo overproduced the game doesn't change my opinion. > You're making up lies to defend your arguments. I sourced all of my arguments. You may disagree with them, but that is a different matter entirely. >It's hard to see how dolls that are meant to entertain children are to star in a supposedly heavy and deep story about murder, death, tragedy and human morality. This is an interesting argument because it touches on a couple of debates about the nature of the narrative. J.R.R Tolkien has written extensively on the categorization of fiction, and on how trying to list stories as "for children" or "for adults" is meaningless and destructive. Its an interesting read, I think you'd enjoy it. A historical example: Up until the mid 1900's, many fantasy stories were simply written off as "for children", even though there is no easy way to make this distinction. The Lord of the Rings, for example, would have been considered a childrens book by the sensibilities of the early-mid 20th century, but is now enjoyed by many adults. Its a world rich with mythological allusion, symbolism and metaphor. Is it entirely fair to reduce it to a simple "children's tale"? No, it isn't. Instead of judging a work based on its perceived audience, we should be judging it on literary merit. There's a reason *The Little Prince*, a children's book translated from French, is commonly studied in High School lit. class; it has literary merit that allows it to transcend its "perceived audience". Instead of casting aside a work aside because "it was meant for children", we should be dismissing work because it isn't written or designed at a level that allows it to hold up to critical analysis. Take Harry Potter, for example. Now, I haven't read the series since I was a pre-teen, but I remember even then being unimpressed by its quality of writing. Instead of being unhappy that people invest themselves into fiction aimed at children, wouldn't it be more fair to be unhappy that people get overly obsessed with *poorly written literature*? We shouldn't be looking at an investment into "children's books" as a "cultural catastrophe", as literature is constantly evolving, and so too is our perception of what "children't literature" is. If we followed that, any sort of fiction would still be frowned upon in today's society. Instead, we should be looking at placing poorly written literature on a pedestal as a "catastrophe". >Because, ultimately, if we have people that think that Mother 3 is the greatest and deepest story ever, then i believe there's something really wrong here. I don't think anyone sees Mother 3 as the deepest story ever. I certainly don't. I do think, however, that Mother 3 possesses great merit in its narrative, at least context of videogaming (which is admittedly a low bar to set), and that it compares favorably with most contemporary works of fantasy (which you seem to dislike). I also think it compares at least somewhat favorably to the literature I've read. Now, I haven't read many comics or contemporary novels because of the environment I grew up in; I grew up with Dickens, Homer, Faulkner, Fitzgerald, etc. When I say that Mother 3 has merit, I'm not trying to be one of those "videogames are deep!" edgelords, I genuinely believe it has merit, and I stand by that opinion. I most certainly don't say that lightly, either; Mother 3 is the only modern work where I constantly draw parallels to my favorite works of literature. >If it was all about "I liked it, let me like it, please", it would have been different, but i'm pretty tired on people who try to make a flawed children story made for adult people and ditch people who criticize certain choices as the ones who aren't "sensitive enough". The issue here is that you're generalizing. Different "children's works" have differing levels of merit. *Tom Sawyer*, for example, is a very different beast from *The Cat in the Hat*, which is not even comparable to *The Hobbit*. I think your issue is that people seem to be worshiping books that you think don't possess literary merit. >I'm not the arrogant one I never said you were arrogant; I try not to make sweeping judgement about people. I *did*, however, say that your habit of passing off sweeping generalizations as fact came off that way. Now that you've clarified your position better, I think I can sympathize with your arguments a bit more. Apologies if I came off as overly antagonizing (which it seems I did). >you are, sorry. I'm just outspoken. I'm just gonna pretend like I never read this bit.

  • Willard Marvin

    Oh my. I'm 30 now so I'm going to have to dig deep, but I'll give you some bullet points. - I was a big fan of reading. There are books about sexuality at the library that are age appropriate for different age groups. 6-8, 8-10, 10-12, 12-and so on. I think I first started reading about the human body and what it can do before I was 10 (so before the "shame" wins it from curiosity). If I had any questions I could ask mom. We always did little book club nights where I talked about what I read, so switching from childrens books to sexual education kind of went naturally. - we were very open about being naked. As small kids we played in the tiny pool in the backyard in our bare butts. As toddlers Dad would take a bath with us while my mom had time to wash up the dishes downstairs. When we got a little older my sister and I showered together, so I could wash her hair (she was too little to do it herself). We never locked bathroom doors. (I tried that once when I was like 13, when I got my first pubic hairs and went into that teen phase of I'm ashamed of my body don't look at me plz. My dad needed to brush his teeth bc he was late for work, he had heard from my mom, who I had told of my changing body, and he went berserk NOBODY CARES ABOUT THE THREE HAIRS ON YOUR PEEPEE MISS-IMPOSSIBLE NOW OPEN THE DOOR! But then gave me time to hop back into the shower before he came in, because he's an awesome dude). My mom always sunbathed topless (Europe guys, calm down. We do that here). My aunt did too, and so did her daughters (20 and 25 at the time). So my sister and I quickly followed. We went to nude spa's with our mom and got pampered. - a LOT of humor. My parents would tease us to no end. My dad knew exactly what to say to piss me and my sister of beyond reason, but he could also make us laugh until we almost pissed ourselves. They'd make fun of our "boobies", in a lighthearted tone, or when we started to grow pubic hair my mom would say "ooh hurry up cover yourself I might see your spider". By making it funny, it quickly loses its "shame", if you get my drift. Prudity just couldn't really thrive in a welcome climate like that. - when I got to the age where I could potentially start making out/fooling around/having sex, my mom took me for a long walk in the woods, just the two of us, and tried her best to prepare me for it. Topics? - birth control, did I need that yet? I didn't (I was 13, never had a period yet, and had never even kissed a guy). She told me that by the time I did needed the pill, she would get it for me no questions asked. (A few months later I got my first period which it turned out needed to be contained by birth control, because it was so heavy I was sick 2 days a month). - protection and std's. Always wear protection. If you think you need condoms or you know the moment is close where you could potentially need them, let me know and I'll buy them for you. If a boy says it's not necessary to wear one, he's lying and probably has gone without with other girls too. If it has happened without a rubber, please tell me immediately so I can go and get a pregnancy test and take you to the doctors for an std check. Again, no judgement, no questions asked. You can tell me what you think I need to know and that is enough. - love. How amazing it is to fall in love, and what an amazing feeling it is to explore eachother and melt into one. That love is not always mutual. That sometimes people get hurt. That sex can be ok without love too, but that it will never top off having sex with someone you love. That she hoped my first time was with someone I loved and that he (or she) would love me just as much. - against my will. If something bad happened, that it was ALWAYS something I could come and talk to them about. They would never judge me and that they would help me. These are the main things I can come up with off the top of my head.

  • Sydnee Fay

    Practice. Practice every day. Even if you can only learn one word, that's still one more word than you knew yesterday. Languages are made up of speaking, writing, listening and reading. Try and focus on all of these equally. The internet is your friend. You can find tons of resources out there and if you can't, there will often be plenty of people to point you in the right direction. Incorporate it into your daily life. Every so often just ask yourself "How would I say that in X language?" or "Do I know the word for this in that language". Learn mundane things. Keep a diary. Even if all you write was "I ate chicken today" it still gets you in the practice of writing in that language. I personally try and tweet in my target language as they're short enough to not be too complex and it's good practice. I also follow twitters that post in the languages I want to study because again, the shortness really helps and you can see it being used naturally. For reading - pick a childrens book you like and find a translation of it in that language (If you like Harry Potter, that's usually a good choice). Because you already know the story, it'll help you figure out vocabulary more often. The first few chapters will be really difficult, but it'll get a lot easier as you pick up the vocabulary. Music! Music is a great help - Disney songs are translated into a lot of different languages and are fun to sing along with. You want to not only listen, but try and sing along because it will help your pronunciation. I noticed in the comments you said you were learning German - there's a Youtuber called AlexiBexi who does covers of Pop Songs in German and posts the lyrics on his website. I highly recommend having a look at him. Speaking is difficult if you don't have anybody local to practice with but you can speak to yourself! You can use the internet to help with this too. There are lots of great apps out there - my personal favourite is Memrise as I can make my own courses (I like making vocab ones for the books I'm reading) but there are lots of great courses too. Find a list of the most commonly used words and try and learn those. Then, when you learn new grammar concepts try and use them a lot. It might be repititive, but it'll help. The more examples you do, the easier it'll be in future. When learning new vocabulary, especially verbs, try and write sentences with them because then you'll learn related vocabulary. If you can, I recommend labelling lots of things in your target language. Use post-its and label them everywhere. Once you're confident you've learnt a word, put a new one out or add things to them like adjectives or verbs (for example if you label your sink, then you could add "shiny" or "to clean") I recommend joining a community that learns languages too as it's always more fun with friends - there's a weekly language-learning check-in on here that helps encourage me to do something so that I can post about it. You can also share resources and tips and discuss things like "what should I focus on next?"

  • Carolyn Haley

    When I was younger I was Christian, I wasn't raised that way by my parents, more it was my grandparents that kind of made me Christian. Also when I was younger, i really wanted to be an archeologist. I was obsessed with ancient Egypt. I started reading books on ancient Egypt, and their gods. My parents had bought me many books on the subject, including the childrens book, egyptology. From there I started to broaden my knowledge to ancient greek and norse mythology. This was about when I was 6 and I had this view that there where many gods that held a council over the world, and that the king was the Christian god ( since the bible says no God **before** me). Later I would see the division of these gods as having jurisdictions, which was me trying to rationalize how different cultures worshipped different gods. My parents bought me a second book, from the same publisher, Wizardology (there's a really good post on /r/occult about it if you can find it, im on my phone but I'll try to link it), which was a children's book "written by merlin" that taught things like tarot and wandmaking. So began my obssession with wizards. I would then proceed to dress up as some form of wizard for Halloween for the next 4 years (including Harry Potter) A few years later at 13 I really wanted to find what religion I would fit into, since I loved the subject so much. At the time I thought that you had to pick either your mother eor fathers families religiom for some reason, until my dad pretty much said do whatever you want. It just so happens that I stumbled upon wicca, a religion that would share my love of multiple ancient gods, magical skills, wandmaking, and dressing up as a wizard on Halloween. I became a hard polytheist christian-Wiccan, and after meeting an atheist friend who taught me of all the contradiction of the bible, I dropped the Christian part entirely. Later I would try to tighten my views through ancestry and would then flop between Celtic and Norse Paganism. While practicing these I would study more of the occult, and learning of Satanism, which then I became a Theistic Satanist, who saw Satan as the bastardised form of the celtic god Cernunnos, while still using the Satanic bible as a useful tool. At some point I just dropped the Theistic side, it just kind of stopped. I am here now an agnostic Satanist who takes a lot from different occult philosophy. I now have the view that Wicca is a really good stepping stone for young pagans and occultist who don't know where to go, and I do miss the days of being a young teenage Wiccan who hid it from the world. It was fun staying up late into the night, lighting a candle and making a wand as I was careful not to wake my parents. Thats pretty much it. I have other reasons (like how I justified theism and magic) but that is a different story.

  • Murray Gorczany

    I didn't fully explain everything I personally believe about the theory, so let me clarify. I don't think all the Brandon Starks are ACTUALLY one person, as if it's just one guy who has lived for thousands of years. I do believe that the Bran that we know likely has gone back in time to either communicate with, or skinchange into other Brandon Starks in history.. possibly all of them, to manipulate them into particular actions, such as building Winterfell and The Wall.. Breaking the Night's King... possibly being the Knight of the Laughing Tree (possibly!), and traveling to King's Landing to die. That isn't to say that Bran lived every second of all of the Brandon Starks lives. That isn't to say that every Brandon Stark is just the embodiment of Bran's disembodied consciousness. As I said before, the fact that they're all named Brandon Stark is actually the part about all of this that gives me the most trouble (were they born as Brandon Stark, or did tree-Bran just warg into them and start calling himself Brandon, so that's how they're remembered.. or did Bran simply alter history books at some point.. or does Bran just skinchange Stark parents on their childrens' namedays to ensure he's got a fresh Brandon to warg later.. that's a joke.. I know it's hard to tell amidst all the other craziness).. but I believe it's more likely that these were just Stark sons named Brandon.. and Bran communicated with or skinchanged them through space/time, via WW.net. Some for only a moment (ie. Willas from the show), some for maybe longer periods (months or years), possibly some for a lifetime, and in the case of Bran the Builder, maybe something different wherein Bran dips in and out of the time continuum to present himself at different times/places to make sure that important structures are built throughout that several hundred year period in history. To answer your question directly.. no I don't think it's all that likely that Bran just time-bangs his ancestors to continue the Stark line through history.

  • Marcellus Cassin

    I love so many things about Britain, mostly cultural. I love your many talented writers throughout history, from Shakespeare and Jane Austen and Dickens all the way to today, like J.K. Rowling and many of your crime authors. I love your children's books in particular, from Peter Pan and Alice in Wonderland to Winnie the Pooh and Peter the Rabbit. Most of them involve a very surprising, absurd and clever humour you don't really see much in childrens' books anywhere else and that make them enjoyable for adults, too. I love your 18th century painters, whose style was more refreshing than 18th century painters anywhere else. Same goes for architecture: I love your historical styles of architecture, especially Palladian - again, having the beauty without the clutter, but without being spartan. (I think British philosophers are kind of similar in their mindset, especially around the 18th century.) And while I don't like modern architecture much, I actually think London as it is today looks marvellous. I love most British accents, from very high class BBC style to the vastly different regional ones. I love British television, that produces intelligent, well produced films and programmes all the time, and I love the BBC and its news and factual podcats in particular. I love that many British actors flawlessly go from TV the big screen, then back to theatre live on stage, often surprising us with amazing singing and dancing skills in between, and switching from laugh-out-loud comedy to serious, classical drama. American actors don't tend to be so well-rounded. I admire that, all in all, the mix of races and cultures works quite well in Britain. I am not blind to the existence of both racism and problematic isolated subcultures, but I think it's still working much more smoothly than in Germany, France and Italy. It's funny - I am a German who is obsessed with British culture, and married a Brit who is obsessed with German culture, and neither of us quite gets each other's obsession.

  • Hester Oberbrunner

    I am just gonna jump on here because noone cares but I want to type out some nostalgia. N64 was my favorite system, because in that era, you were getting the early waves of achievements, and "Cheats" started to just become a menu that unlocked when you finished the game, or achieved other things. I remember playing a lot of playstation games like this and being dissapointed, because before I got the playstation, I had an N64. Every week, I would get on my bike, and ride it to the library. I would walk in, reserve a computer (to play some Magic Schoolbus, of course), and id trek over to the sparsely populated "gaming" section of the Periodicals department (A whole quarter of a shelf!). Now, periodicals had Game Informer which was a magazine whose first half was as it exists today, but the entire second half of the magazine was just an index of NES, Saga, SNES, and N64 games that listed off different lists of cheat codes. Looking back on it, I would liken myself to a young wizard-to-be who was pouring over spell books, and scribbled the more interesting ones into a beat up notebook to add to my list of abilities. After that, id check out the [Brady Games section](http://www.barnesandnoble.com/p/secret-codes-for-nintendo-64-ronald-wartow/1029720106/2685283286938?st=PLA&sid=BNB_DRS_Marketplace+Shopping+Books_00000000&2sid=Google_&sourceId=PLGoP1948&k_clickid=3x1948) in childrens fiction to see if I hit the ever elusive pay-dirt, and if one of them had been returned so that I could take a full spellbook home with me for an entire week. I'd play my computer game, often pay my 1.50 fee for returning my last Brady Games book, which I actually greedily kept for 3 weeks, check out a new one (if I was lucky) and set about the 5 mile bike ride home. 2016 has a lot of cool technology, but it is a shame that children these days never get the tutorial on how to swipe the bar scan pen against the laminated bar code.

  • Demario Schaefer

    Space and portability is a big factor. I travel fairly regularly (even if it's just to see my parents) and I don't have to worry about lugging around 3-4 books with me. I'm more of a minimalist, so I like having more space in my apartment too. I love being able to have hundreds of books at my fingertips. Dictionary look up and translation are also huge factors. I don't have to put down the book and type in a word on my phone to figure out what a word means. Kindle has google translate pretty well incorporated, too, so that's a nice bonus for those phrases that are in a different language. The kindle is lightweight and easier to hold for long periods of time. I can stand it up (origami cover) and read it while laying on my side. Having a kindle with the light means you don't have to worry about the lighting situation around you. Instant gratification. I can buy a book and download it instantly. I can also browse through overdrive and check out books via my local library and also get those instantly. Some drawbacks: No shelves full of pretty books to display. Or this shelf is at least not as full as it would be otherwise. A bit more clunky to navigate through a whole book. You can have bookmarks on a kindle, but if you want to do a bunch of notes/highlighting it can be a bit clunky on a kindle, IMO. This would probably be easier and more intuitive the more you do it on an ereader. Can't loan someone an ebook(or there's an annoying process to go through to do it) I.e. You have a friend over, they see your shelf and you can let them borrow a book. Said situation Doesn't really happen with an ebook. Childrens books, pictures, cookbooks, books with diagrams, etc. For very young children, they probably shouldn't have a $200 eink device (with fragile screens) as they will break in no time. If books have a lot of pictures or diagrams, the reading experience isn't going to be pleasant on a kindle. A tablet make that better, but sometimes it's nice to have a printed book instead.

  • Hallie Kuhic

    I would like to further elaborate that being in love means something different for everyone. In Dumbledore's case it was that he was in love with what Grindlewald represented and what he was. If Grindlewald was a woman, he would have had the same feelings. He cared about Grindlewalds mind and ideas, not his body. While I get what you are trying to say, that she meant that, but because it was a childrens book that she couldn't say that they touched each other and showered naked or something. The thing is despite what the author intends, books are interpreted in different ways by different people. As there was no implication of anything sexual, he is neither hetero or homo. Even a he kissed him on the cheek, or they held hands (the legend of kora.. still vauge) would give some hint of his sexuality. The fact is the word has to do with sex, not feelings (other than arousal) means that he is not gay. You can't write a character as nothing .. and be like ohh.. he's gay. Cause until she said it, there were no hints. No one even said hey... I think Dumbledore's gay. /rant over I'll fix grammar and any logical mistakes in my argument later.

  • Ronny Maggio

    Similar issue here. My 6 year old can spell just about any website she uses but has trouble reading childrens books the school sends home. But youtube, google, facebook and at least 5 different passwords she can spell them no problem. As my oldest im unsure how to help her learn words as i found being a parent is basically a experiment with the first kid (my dads gone and dont talk to mom so dont get much help with how did you do this questions). I have her sound out words and she will get close to them and stick with it stubbornly even if i tell her no that letter makes a different sound in that word and explain the various sounds of usually vowels.

  • Jan Hegmann

    #Gays Claims that gay parents are just as capable of raising children as straight parents are misrepresented. Source: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2657413 Between 24% and 90% of lesbians report being psychologically abused by their partners. Source: https://mainweb-v.musc.edu/vawprevention/lesbianrx/factsheet.shtml Gay men are 60x more likely to have HIV than straight men. Source: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3462414/ 46% of male homosexuals report being molested, as compared to only 7% of heterosexual men. Source: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11501300 Gays are more likely than straight people to have mental illness. Source: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2072932/ 1/4 gay men in America have had over 1000 sex partners. Source: http://www.amazon.com/Homosexualities-Study-Diversity-Among-Women/dp/0671251503 43% of gay men have over 500 partners. Source: http://www.amazon.com/Homosexualities-Study-Diversity-Among-Women/dp/0671251503 Gay men are six times more likely to commit suicide than straight men. Source: http://www.amazon.com/Unequal-Opportunity-Disparities-Affecting-Bisexual/dp/0195301536 Gay men are 12x more likely to use amphetamines than straight men. Source: http://www.amazon.com/Unequal-Opportunity-Disparities-Affecting-Bisexual/dp/0195301536 Gay men are 10x more likely to use heroin than straight men. Source: http://www.amazon.com/Unequal-Opportunity-Disparities-Affecting-Bisexual/dp/0195301536 Liberal arguments in favor of homosexuality are based on logical fallacies. Source: http://hrcak.srce.hr/index.php?show=clanak&id_clanak_jezik=19028&lang=en 10 to 15 percent of older homosexuals have more than 1000 sex partners. Source: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3813477 Gay people are 2-3x more likely to abuse alcohol than straight people. Source: http://www.amazon.com/Unequal-Opportunity-Disparities-Affecting-Bisexual/dp/0195301536 Up to 50% of lesbians have reported sexual abuse. Source: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9360290 79% of homosexual men say over half of their sex partners are strangers. Source: http://www.amazon.com/Unequal-Opportunity-Disparities-Affecting-Bisexual/dp/0195301536 99.8% of lesbian, gay and bisexual teens will change their sexual orientation within 13 years. Source: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26048483 Two-thirds of men and women who were homosexual change their orientation to heterosexual five years later. Source: http://psycnet.apa.org/books/11261/004 Two thirds of self-identified lesbians later have heterosexual relationships. Source: http://psycnet.apa.org/books/11261/004 Identifying as lesbian, gay or bisexual does not end sexual questioning or confusion. Source: http://psycnet.apa.org/books/11261/004 One in eight gay men in London has HIV. Source: http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2014/11/18/13-of-gay-and-bisexual-men-in-london-living-with-hiv/ Gay men are twice as likely as straight men to be in interracial relationships. Source: http://sf.oxfordjournals.org/content/93/4/1423 In Australia, 25% of homosexuals have had more than 100 sex partners. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Gay men, who are 1.65% of the US population, account for 63% of the country’s syphilis cases. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print In 2010, homosexuals were about 200 times more likely than everyone else to be diagnosed with HIV. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Gay men are 15 times more likely to have Hepatitis B than everyone else. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Homosexuals are more to use illegal drugs and drink to excess than straight people. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Homosexuals are more likely than straight people to have anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, and to commit suicide. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Gay men are 10-15 times more likely than straight men to have eating disorders. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print 40% to 60% of serial killers are homosexuals. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Homosexual men are more likely to have been abused by their partners than straight men. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Monogamy is not a central feature of most homosexual relationships. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Married homosexual men are 50% more likely than straight couples to divorce. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print In the Netherlands, the average homosexual in a “steady relationship” has seven to eight affairs per year. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Over 20% of older homosexuals have had more than 500 different sex partners. Source: http://advindicate.com/articles/3022 The average gay man has several dozen sex partners per year. Source: http://advindicate.com/articles/3022 28% of homosexuals have had sex with over a thousand men. For straight men? Just 25% have had sex with more than 10 women. Source: http://advindicate.com/articles/3022 Most “long term relationships” between gay men last less than eight years. Source: http://advindicate.com/articles/3022 Among gay Canadian men in “committed relationships, only 25% were monogamous. Source: http://advindicate.com/articles/3022 In one study, only 9% of gay men were monogamous. Source: http://advindicate.com/articles/3022 75% of straight men an are faithful, compared to just 4.5% of gay men. Source: http://advindicate.com/articles/3022 In Berlin, 83% of gay men in “steady” relationships had had frequent affairs in the last year. Source: http://advindicate.com/articles/3022 Infection rates for gonorrhea and chlamydia are increasing among active homosexual men. Source: http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2015/12/the_gay_agenda_and_the_real_world.html Gay men, 1% of the population, account for 83% of syphilis cases. Source: http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2015/12/the_gay_agenda_and_the_real_world.html Syphilis was almost eradicated, but made a comeback among homosexual men. Source: http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2015/12/the_gay_agenda_and_the_real_world.html Active homosexual men are 17 times more likely than straight people to have anal cancer. Source: http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2015/12/the_gay_agenda_and_the_real_world.html Lesbians are 2.5x more likely than straight women to be obese. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Lesbians are twice as likely as straight women to have eating disorders. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Lesbians are twice as likely as straight women to be stalked or physically abused by their partners. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Married lesbians are 2-3 times more likely to divorce than straight couples. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Homosexuals, lesbians, and transsexuals are poorer than straight people. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print America has spent $700 million promoting gay rights abroad – an “integral” part of American foreign policy. Source: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/21/world/africa/us-support-of-gay-rights-in-africa-may-have-done-more-harm-than-good.html?_r=0

  • Pietro Hand

    Gays Claims that gay parents are just as capable of raising children as straight parents are misrepresented. Source: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2657413 Between 24% and 90% of lesbians report being psychologically abused by their partners. Source: https://mainweb-v.musc.edu/vawprevention/lesbianrx/factsheet.shtml Gay men are 60x more likely to have HIV than straight men. Source: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3462414/ 46% of male homosexuals report being molested, as compared to only 7% of heterosexual men. Source: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11501300 Gays are more likely than straight people to have mental illness. Source: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2072932/ 1/4 gay men in America have had over 1000 sex partners. Source: http://www.amazon.com/Homosexualities-Study-Diversity-Among-Women/dp/0671251503 43% of gay men have over 500 partners. Source: http://www.amazon.com/Homosexualities-Study-Diversity-Among-Women/dp/0671251503 Gay men are six times more likely to commit suicide than straight men. Source: http://www.amazon.com/Unequal-Opportunity-Disparities-Affecting-Bisexual/dp/0195301536 Gay men are 12x more likely to use amphetamines than straight men. Source: http://www.amazon.com/Unequal-Opportunity-Disparities-Affecting-Bisexual/dp/0195301536 Gay men are 10x more likely to use heroin than straight men. Source: http://www.amazon.com/Unequal-Opportunity-Disparities-Affecting-Bisexual/dp/0195301536 Liberal arguments in favor of homosexuality are based on logical fallacies. Source: http://hrcak.srce.hr/index.php?show=clanak&id_clanak_jezik=19028&lang=en 10 to 15 percent of older homosexuals have more than 1000 sex partners. Source: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3813477 Gay people are 2-3x more likely to abuse alcohol than straight people. Source: http://www.amazon.com/Unequal-Opportunity-Disparities-Affecting-Bisexual/dp/0195301536 Up to 50% of lesbians have reported sexual abuse. Source: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9360290 79% of homosexual men say over half of their sex partners are strangers. Source: http://www.amazon.com/Unequal-Opportunity-Disparities-Affecting-Bisexual/dp/0195301536 99.8% of lesbian, gay and bisexual teens will change their sexual orientation within 13 years. Source: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26048483 Two-thirds of men and women who were homosexual change their orientation to heterosexual five years later. Source: http://psycnet.apa.org/books/11261/004 Two thirds of self-identified lesbians later have heterosexual relationships. Source: http://psycnet.apa.org/books/11261/004 Identifying as lesbian, gay or bisexual does not end sexual questioning or confusion. Source: http://psycnet.apa.org/books/11261/004 One in eight gay men in London has HIV. Source: http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2014/11/18/13-of-gay-and-bisexual-men-in-london-living-with-hiv/ Gay men are twice as likely as straight men to be in interracial relationships. Source: http://sf.oxfordjournals.org/content/93/4/1423 In Australia, 25% of homosexuals have had more than 100 sex partners. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Gay men, who are 1.65% of the US population, account for 63% of the country’s syphilis cases. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print In 2010, homosexuals were about 200 times more likely than everyone else to be diagnosed with HIV. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Gay men are 15 times more likely to have Hepatitis B than everyone else. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Homosexuals are more to use illegal drugs and drink to excess than straight people. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Homosexuals are more likely than straight people to have anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, and to commit suicide. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Gay men are 10-15 times more likely than straight men to have eating disorders. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print 40% to 60% of serial killers are homosexuals. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Homosexual men are more likely to have been abused by their partners than straight men. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Monogamy is not a central feature of most homosexual relationships. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Married homosexual men are 50% more likely than straight couples to divorce. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print In the Netherlands, the average homosexual in a “steady relationship” has seven to eight affairs per year. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Over 20% of older homosexuals have had more than 500 different sex partners. Source: http://advindicate.com/articles/3022 The average gay man has several dozen sex partners per year. Source: http://advindicate.com/articles/3022 28% of homosexuals have had sex with over a thousand men. For straight men? Just 25% have had sex with more than 10 women. Source: http://advindicate.com/articles/3022 Most “long term relationships” between gay men last less than eight years. Source: http://advindicate.com/articles/3022 Among gay Canadian men in “committed relationships, only 25% were monogamous. Source: http://advindicate.com/articles/3022 In one study, only 9% of gay men were monogamous. Source: http://advindicate.com/articles/3022 75% of straight men an are faithful, compared to just 4.5% of gay men. Source: http://advindicate.com/articles/3022 In Berlin, 83% of gay men in “steady” relationships had had frequent affairs in the last year. Source: http://advindicate.com/articles/3022 Infection rates for gonorrhea and chlamydia are increasing among active homosexual men. Source: http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2015/12/the_gay_agenda_and_the_real_world.html Gay men, 1% of the population, account for 83% of syphilis cases. Source: http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2015/12/the_gay_agenda_and_the_real_world.html Syphilis was almost eradicated, but made a comeback among homosexual men. Source: http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2015/12/the_gay_agenda_and_the_real_world.html Active homosexual men are 17 times more likely than straight people to have anal cancer. Source: http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2015/12/the_gay_agenda_and_the_real_world.html Lesbians are 2.5x more likely than straight women to be obese. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Lesbians are twice as likely as straight women to have eating disorders. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Lesbians are twice as likely as straight women to be stalked or physically abused by their partners. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Married lesbians are 2-3 times more likely to divorce than straight couples. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print Homosexuals, lesbians, and transsexuals are poorer than straight people. Source: http://takimag.com/article/the_straight_dope_on_homosexuality_elizabeth_mccaw/print America has spent $700 million promoting gay rights abroad – an “integral” part of American foreign policy. Source: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/21/world/africa/us-support-of-gay-rights-in-africa-may-have-done-more-harm-than-good.html?_r=0

  • Kody Farrell

    I love these kinds of things!! I love analyses and I love mythology, so this is super fun. Anyway, I read up a lot on Medusa and Perseus after seeing this thread, to see if there was anything I could add to the discussion. I even pulled out some books that I had on the subject. Honestly, I was extremely shocked with some of the connections I found between the myth and this series. Buckle up, because this is gonna be long. First off, I want to talk about Perseus, the one who slays Medusa. Before his birth, his mother was imprisoned so that she would not get pregnant. However, Zeus impregnated her in the form of a "shower of gold", thus conceiving Perseus. Obviously, this brings to mind Hana's revenge on Kiyoshi. About Medusa: In the words of Perseus, "She was once most beautiful, and the jealous aspiration of many suitors. Of all her beauties none was more admired than her hair." Her beauty was even said to rival the goddess Athena, daughter of Zeus. However, things went downhill for her after Poseidon violated her in a "forbidden" place, which is said to either be one of Athena's temples or a flower meadow (side note- Hana means "flower" in Japanese). Athena punished Medusa by turning her into a serpent-haired monster that turns onlookers to stone. Medusa's origin story, with Poseidon violating her, could relate to Kiyoshi violating Hana (albeit in different ways). Disregarding Kiyoshi's intentions, each situation for which Hana wanted revenge for was one in which he violated her in some way. Now, what's really interesting is Freud's interpretation of the myth, which /u/TheGoodKindOfPain touched on. He wrote a short essay called [Medusa's Head]( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medusa's_Head) in which he makes many connections that relate to this series. Freud literally says that Medusa's head represents the female nether regions, and that turning to stone represents exactly what Kiyoshi says it does. He even states that the fear of Medusa is the fear of castration. I find it quite interesting just how much all of this coincides with Hana and Kiyoshi's story, particularly the first kiss scene. Aside from the obvious Medusa/turning to stone connection, there's also the fact that Kiyoshi was afraid of what Hana was going to do with her scissors (castration). Others see Medusa as a symbol of female sexuality. Her ability to turn men to stone represents the female's ability to cause impotence in men, which at the time was seen as extremely dangerous. Perseus "conquering" Medusa represents him taking back and asserting his manhood. This becomes quite an interesting point when you think about Hana and Kiyoshi's constant struggle for dominance. Again, the first kiss scene exhibits this most obviously (from start to finish), as well as the conversation between Medusa and PBR in the futon (they talk about who is really the "beast"). I also wanted to explore the rivalry between Athena and Medusa. It is alleged by some that Medusa was beheaded for Athena's sake. When Perseus goes on his quest, Athena steps in and offers her help. Without her, he would have never won against Medusa. In fact, it is said that Athena guided Perseus' hand when he swung the blade to behead her. After using her head to petrify his enemies, Perseus gave it to Athena, who then put it on her armor to scare her enemies in battle. I was wondering what it would look like if we saw Hana as Medusa and Chiyo as Athena. Although there are many ways in which Chiyo doesn't seem to fit Athena's role, there are many similarities in relation to Medusa. For instance, Hana and Chiyo are the obvious love rivals for Kiyoshi. Kiyoshi finds both of them to be objectively cute/beautiful. Also, the juxtaposition of their roles are similar. Athena is a virgin goddess who is the patron of many heroes. Chiyo is a naive girl who has always been at the aid and support of our story's hero, Kiyoshi. Medusa is a powerful figure who strikes fear into men, and in some cases is described as enjoying her sexuality and engaging in sexual activities instinctively. Hana is a physically strong girl who the boys had grown to fear, especially Kiyoshi, and is shown to be embracing her sexuality. There's also the contrast in Chiyo being Kiyoshi's pure/rational choice and Hana being his instinctual choice. The fact that there are hints that Chiyo may begin seeing Hana as a threat also reminds me of Athena. Much like how Athena was likely jealous of Medusa, perhaps we will see Chiyo being jealous of Hana. If the myth has any relation to the series, perhaps we will see Chiyo act in ways that would turn Kiyoshi against Hana, or sabotage her in some way, after she finds out what went down between her and Kiyoshi (much like how Athena cursed Medusa after the sexual transgression with Poseidon, and later helps Perseus behead her). Although I won't go into it very much, I also want to note that Athena can also be seen as a reflection of Medusa. In this sense, Hana would represent both of them. In terms of it being another character like Chiyo, I also thought it could be Mari, but for less obvious reasons. Athena is closely associated with birds, particularly an owl, much like how Mari is associated with crows (although Chiyo is a bit as well). Also, in some versions, Medusa is a priestess serving in Athena's temple, much like how Hana is in the USC serving under Mari. I don't recall exactly how much Mari knows of Hana and Kiyoshi's antics, but Hana was clearly fearful of her finding out and then being punished. After Perseus decapitated Medusa, she supposedly gave birth to two of Poseidon's children from her neck. One of those was [Pegasus]( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pegasus), the winged horse. Interestingly, Pegasus is a symbol of wisdom and poetry. I can't help but think of the futon scene here, when Kiyoshi has a whole monologue on his and Hana's relationship. That entire monologue could be seen as poetry, and perhaps even wisdom. Much like how Pegasus was born from Medusa's defeat, that monologue seems to come to fruition after Kiyoshi's defeat. It's even more interesting if you consider the fact that Medusa symbolizes death and life/rebirth in many ways. For instance, after her death, her drops of blood fell from her head, landed in Africa, and turned into snakes (some even say oases, coral reefs, etc.). There's also the snake motif that symbolizes rebirth (shedding of skin/snake swallowing its own tail). And then, obviously, from her death came the birth of her children. In terms of the futon scene where Kiyoshi can be seen as having a literary baptism, the Medusa motif also reinforces the idea of Kiyoshi being born anew. Actually, if we look back at Perseus being conceived in a "shower of gold", I'd say this also reinforces a figurative rebirth for Kiyoshi. Kiyoshi even has an inner monologue in the futon about his mother getting mad at him for peeing the bed as a child. And now, I'd like to make one last point: Perseus vs. Medusa played out in the story already. I would argue that the Perseus vs. Medusa story played out in the first kiss scene. The constant struggle for domination played out clearly between the two's thoughts and actions. There's also a heck of a lot of eye contact during the kissing, which calls to mind how men turn to stone when they look into Medusa's eyes. However, the ending is what's most important in this comparison. At the moment when Kiyoshi decides to make out with Hana in order to "destroy" her, he is Perseus using his shield to see Medusa's reflection. In that moment, he reflects on Hana's situation and his own. He realizes that Hana is inexperienced and naive, and that her kiss is a "child's kiss". He discovers the way to defeating her after this introspection. Then, he turns his thoughts to himself, and he comes to the decision to give up his first kiss to accomplish his mission. These reflections, like Perseus' shield, were the reason he succeeded. Then, my favorite part of this comparison, is the beheading itself. Hana's beheading comes when she faints. She even bleeds, just like Medusa does from her neck. And when she faints, her eyes are drawn without pupils [(Ch. 77, p. 9)]( https://kangokugakuen.com/uploads/manga/prison-school/chapters/77/09.png), just like how Medusa's are depicted in the manga. Even the way it's drawn looks almost as if Hana has been beheaded. Seriously. [Look at this page (Ch. 77, p. 8)](https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/cd/2f/f7/cd2ff76671decf5fef15bcb96b142290.jpg). Then, following Medusa's theme of death and life, Hana wakes up [(Ch. 77, p. 15)]( https://kangokugakuen.com/uploads/manga/prison-school/chapters/77/15.png), except now she acts differently than before [(Ch. 78, p. 1)]( https://kangokugakuen.com/uploads/manga/prison-school/chapters/78/01.png). She's been reborn, awakened to her feelings for Kiyoshi. And what symbolizes this rebirth? Her blood. Just as Medusa's blood birthed children and created life after her death, Hana stares at her bloody tissue, contemplating her newly discovered feelings, after her own defeat. Some sources/reading: [1]( http://www.english.illinois.edu/maps/poets/a_f/bogan/medusamyth.htm), [2]( http://www.thaliatook.com/AMGG/medusa.php), [3]( http://www.webwinds.com/thalassa/medusa.htm), [4]( http://www.maicar.com/GML/Perseus1.html), [5]( http://www.maicar.com/GML/Medusa1.html), [6]( http://medusa.plush.org/analysis.shtml)

  • Nina Smitham

    > wrote an answer already, but didn't press send... I hate it when that happens! Either that or you press send and get an error. If you use Chrome I recommend [Lazarus](https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/lazarus-form-recovery/loljledaigphbcpfhfmgopdkppkifgno?hl=en). Hasn't been updated in forever, but still seems to work. > overwhelmed the story of the movie? Possible. Also, the movie didn't have audio description, so I was probably less invested in it, because I knew I was going to miss stuff anyway. > The theatre is called 4DX That sounds really interesting! I'll go bother the two or three Scottish blind folks I know to see if they've been and what they thought of it. If I lived there, I'd have definitely made time to go. By the way, are you at all familiar with the work of [Dr. Michael James Heron](http://michael.imaginary-realities.com)? He works at Robert Gordon University, and has done a lot of really interesting research into accessibility of computer games, board games, open-source software, etc. > I'm pretty interested in your baseball radio. Do you like the device itself at all? What is it like? Sure, I like it for listening to baseball games! LOL. It's a hand-sized radio, shaped sort of like a cylinder, with a speaker and extremely short antenna on the top, and a place to put the batteries in at the bottom. It has two dials on the side, the larger one near the top for changing the frequency, and the smaller one near the bottom for turning the radio on and changing the volume. It also has a toggle switch that slides between being up for AM, and down for FM. If I line the bottom of the radio up with the heel of my palm, the top of the antenna sticks up just a few mm above my longest finger. As for width, I can comfortably make a circle around the radio with my thumb and longest finger. I have no idea what colour it is. And that's the most detailed description I can give without actually measuring anything. I got it when I was about 6 years old, and took it with me to the ball park the first time I ever went. It's been my baseball radio ever since. It's far from the only portable radio I have, though. My friends joke that whenever I find a portable radio on sale, I can't resist buying it. Not actually true, but I do own a few more radios than I need. A canadian manufacturer of shortwave sets was closing down, so I just had to get one of the last ones they made! And a few years ago a local electronics store was going out of business, and everything was 50% or more off, so I wound up getting a couple radios there, because they had interesting features (AM/FM/NOAA Weather Radio/marine radio on one, another with 3 extra shortwave bands we don't actually use in Canada and the ability to do upper and lower sideband). And I found a tabletop radio made in the late 60's or early 70's that doesn't even have FM or the AM expanded band at a garage sale for $5, so I had to buy it. It's actually covered in fake leather! ROFL! Etc, etc, etc. > So you have never seen baseball, but enjoy listening to it. Actually, I played tee-ball as a young child. And I've played a few games of beep baseball whenever we could get enough blind people together for a one-off game. Though I never played either game seriously. I've also been to events in the past where I got to walk around the field, run the bases, and meet some of the players. I even have a baseball autographed by the Toronto Blue Jays world series winning team! So I've been listening to baseball games on the radio for as long as I can remember, and going to games for almost that long. > What do you especially like about it? It's a slow paste game, leaving plenty of time for descriptions of the action, and making it easy to follow, even when listening socially with friends and family. If I had been born in the UK, I expect I'd feel the same way about cricket. But as it is, nobody in Canada cares about that sport, and it's never on the radio here. So I'll stick to baseball. Also, I'll never get to visit a cricket pitch, so even if I started listening online, my mental imagining of the plays would never be as strong. So I guess it's fair to say my love of baseball is as much an accident of birth as anything. > Are the braille cards an easy way to play together? Fairly. But whenever someone else plays a card, they need to announce the card they played (assuming we're playing a game where cards are played face up, or tricks are taken, or whatever), so I'll know what's happening, and who's turn it is. So that can sometimes be a barrier to having relaxed conversation while playing cards, because it keeps getting interrupted so someone can announce there play. > How is braille for you in general? Blind children who don't learn Braille don't learn how to spell, how to use punctuation and capital letters, or how to format paragraphs. So it's something that's just gotta be learned! However, once I became an adult, the only things I use Braille for are games, and labeling objects. I would never read a Braille book today. It's too bulky, too slow, and too expensive. But never-the-less, I'm glad I learned Braille as a child. If I hadn't, I couldn't write as clearly on the computer as I do today. > Do you wish there were more things available in braille More Braille books? No. And I don't really want letters, bills, or other documents in Braille; those are fine online. But signs, door numbers, button labels, ATM instructions, or any other text that's built into the physical world, and wouldn't make sense electronically, yes please! > What is it about accessible game versions that make it harder to get together with people you don’t know that well to game? First off, the modifications can make the game look unusual or different. Second, they may have to change how they play slightly, for example by announcing there move or play. Generally people seem to say that if you take your hands off the board, or lay the card down on the table, or pick up a peace and move it, your play is done and you can't take it back. I always house rule that your play isn't done until you've announced it, with some exceptions depending on the game. For example, in some games where you have to decide if you're going to draw from the deck or the discard pile, you can't change your mind once you've seen the card you drew. But in general if you move a peace or put down a card or whatever, you can still change your mind if you haven't announced your move outloud. This also helps to prevent the next player from starting to take his turn before the previous player has finished telling me what she did. Third, accessible games are a lot more expensive than the regular variety! A single pack of Braille cards can be as much as $20. And some people are just so rough on cards when they shuffle or deal. Bending a regular pack of cards over the course of a game night is no big deal, because an entirely new pack is only a dollar. But I'd like my Braille cards to last months, if possible. > are there any other formats you can use? Sure. Electronic formats, like epub or html or pdf, assuming the publisher isn't using any DRM. Similarly, Kindle books, unless the publisher has disabled text to speech. Unfortunately, some publishers sell a Kindle book for $9.99, and disable text to speech, to make sure people are forced to purchase the audio book they also sell, for $30. > What would a shared experience be? I consider music, food, and books shared experiences, even if they're not something we're all doing together. Because it's still possible to discuss them after the fact. I've spent many an evening engaged in discussions of the smallest details of Harry Potter, for example. I don't consider movies and TV shows shared experiences, because even with audio description, blind people are missing a lot of the information conveyed only by visuals. However, I used to think the information we were missing was a lot more important and involved than it perhaps is. In the past, I've publicly stated in online discussions that 75% of the information in a TV show or movie is conveyed exclusively through visuals, and vigorously defended that totally unsupported opinion, to the frustration of everyone else in the discussion. That only started to change a few years ago, when I got involved in the fringes of the _My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic_ fan community. A gentleman writes some [extremely, extremely detailed](https://docs.google.com/document/d/1T_9kufM2yZeHcRZ_bw7j1SYPxhnaCMKvHLI9zNCX52Q/edit) transcripts for the episodes of that show. Comparing those shot-by-shot scripts with the episodes that are available with audio description really reinforces just how little the things the audio describer fails to mention matter to the plot...or...well, anything really. But when I know I'm missing information, I tend to way over-estimate just how important the things I'm missing are, perhaps because I have no visual memories of TV, so know way of imagining what actually happens on screen. > goal ball I've played that a bunch over the years, though again, never for anything more than fun. I think that's a good example of a shared real time experience. And I would agree with you that shared real time experiences are few and far between. However, I don't agree that an experience has to take place in real time to be shared. Hense music, podcasts, books, food, cooking, etc, can all be shared experiences. That is, experiences where the blind person and sighted person both have access to the same basic information, that they then use to form opinions, preferences, etc, and can then communicate about these opinions with each other on the same level.

  • Shayna Kessler

    > I don't copy-and-paste from any website. I used to be a very practicing muslim, who lead salah and manned the dawah tables at my university. The knowledge I have about Islam, I acquired from reading the Quran (yes, I actually did read it), the tafseers of Ibn Kathir and Al-Jalalayn, the hadith collections of Sahih Bukhari and Sahih Muslim (Yes, I actually did go through these books when I was around 16), and the seerah of Muhammad written by Sheikh Safi-ur-Rahman al-Mubarkpuri (The Sealed Nectar). Unlike a lot of hacks out there who just lazily post links to websites, I actually go back to the books to type up a good, well-sourced response. My weakness is that I'm a slow writer-- I compulsively use up a lot of time to write up something I'm satisfied with. I mean there is so doubt that you attempt to come off as someone whose done his homework but it's the little things that give it away. I think your process is more like you lift your stuff off these anti-Islamic subs and websites, you rewrite it but I think you actually do attempt to make some changes to the original in order to appear as if you do your homework. I'm not even sure why you put in so much effort when one look at the narratives you create easily squashes them. > 'Islamophobia.' The guy who popularized that term-- the former head of Britain’s Equalities and Human Rights Commission (EHRC), Tervor Phillips-- has admitted on record that he "got almost everything wrong” about Muslim immigration and Islam. He now advocates (trigger warning: Breitbart link) for halting the growth of Sharia courts, Masjids funded by the Saudis, and Muslim majority schools among other things. He has realized the dangers of Islam and is now trying to find ways to minimize its negative effects on British society. U.K. Muslims make even other Muslims hate them. So it's no surprise the guy had to readjust his position.but it matters little because the term only names the behavior and with out that term this behavior would still exist and I'd be calling you a bigot or someone behavior is racist like. > Btw, phobias are irrational fears I think you'd have to be a very young person if this is your argument against beig referred to as an Islamophobe. I hate having to teach basic differences between words and their specific meanings and how they get used in spoken language. I'll give you a small example and am sincerely hoping you are able to pick up why your argument of "being called fearful of Islam" is extremely and unbecoming of someone who has claimed to have done some serious amount of reading. Take the work anti-Semite for example. Semitic people atent just Jews. Another group that is in majority is also known as Semitic people, I'm talking about the Arabs. Yet the term Anti-Semite only reffers to being anti-Jewish, which is one ethnic-religious group from amongst all people that speak the Semitic languages. You can see how words slightly change meaning to become more specific or broad in spoken language depending on how they are used and popularized. As for your concern for you claim to have for the common Pakistani, I'm doubtful, because what you preach is pretty horrible. I hate to admit that a lot of Pakistanis back home are simple folk and if your ideas reach them, they aren't going to be abandoning the religion at all, infact the more naive from amongst them will be sold on ISIS as doing the right thing. What you're pushing has potential to create terrorists, who bomb and kill people.. so you'd have to excuse me if I see your attempts of rewriting narratives and using Hadith out of their context a to further these attempts. > Muslims always use this "but what's the context brother!?" argument. Trust me, I know the tricks of the trade. I used to be involved in dawah and debates. I even compiled a list of arguments muslims use to delegitimize genuine criticism of Islam. According to some Muslims, the only 'acceptable context' is the one which portrays Muhammad and Islam in a positive light. Any evidence that breaks this illusion is deemed as something taken 'out of context.' Yup, we use it because islamophobes have a bad habit of justifying their hate by removing context in order to replacing it with their own narrative. Take the post you linked me to for example. You are fully aware of the context of terror in the hearts of disbelievers being when Allah(swt) says he put that fear in the hearts of people who came to fight Badr, when angels were sent to to help the Muslims on the battlefield. Yet, you deliberately make it appear as to Islam sanctions terrorism as it's understood in modern day context. > No I don't. I do my best to reply to everyone but like I said before, my weakness is that I'm a slow writer. I compulsively use up a lot of time trying to make my responses as good as I can. This means that I can't debate 2 or 3 people at the same time. Sorry, almost all of my discussion with you result in you cutting and running and never responding to the rebuttals. As for this excuse of writing slow, and not being able to carry out a discussion with more then one person. I call BS on that, you start arguments and since this is the Internet where you can respond at your leisure. You chose to cut and run. >My problem with Muhammad stems from the fact that he used God to justify all the evil, vile things he did (like blinding people with hot pieces of iron and burying human beings halfway into the ground and hurling rocks at their heads until they died of trauma). All done for the purpose of creating a community that was structured and law abiding, that didn't let societal ills get out of control, a community that was able to take over most of the world. You might prefer the notion of rehabilitating criminals by literally locking them up with the cancer of the society where they become hardened and repeat offenders so that their actions continue to hurt the innocents in the society as well as their own families and friends. You might like the idea to forgive people who torture and murder their helpers. You might be into the idea of putting people through psychological torture by literally grounding them like children, locked away with other bad apples who influence them negatively, you might even like the idea that if a person knowing the Punishment of the crime confesses and that he shouldn't be punished, there by emboldening other criminals to confess and normalize their ills in a society. Islam on the other hand concerns itself with immediate punishment and moving on. Why jail a person for involuntary manslaughter when you can have him benefit the family of the victim by paying them blood money. Why put someone in the system only for him to become a repeat offender because of the environment he was put in as a punishment, why not give him some lashes. He heals in a few days and goes back to living his life. As for adultry and its harsh punishments, I'm sure you've realized by now that they are mostly to serve as a deterrent and it's pretty difficult to convict someone outside of confession. Adultery destroys families, which are the very building blocks of societies. But you seem to be more sympathetic to the murderers and destroyers of families then you are with the impact their actions have on their victims. This man Named Muhammad(pbuh) achieved feats no one else in human history has been able to achieve and he did it by remaining principled. He brought about a revolution unseen before or after him. See most revolutions take place after the muse, or the author of an ideology has already passed away. This man started a movement and within 23 years transformed his society. With most revolutions the only thing that really changes is who rules the people and a few pointers that different from the old rule of law. With Prophet Muhammad(pbuh's) revolution not only did the rule of law change, people changed, how they lived, ate and dressed change, how they washed themselves changed. How they worshipped changed. How they dealt with one another changed, one serious and objective look at this man, his life and the revolution he brought forth single handedly.. and one stops asking what changed with this revolution, the question then becomes ***What didn't change***. No wonder he is regarded as the most influential man in all of history. You might not be objective enough to look at this great man and his achievements though. Because to you this most influential man is just evil and the people who followed him chose to follow evil despite the human disposition of being good. > Most people believe that god is a force for good so when I see a man exploiting that positive sentiment to justify doing evil shit, that's when I have a problem. Sure. Most people do believe that God is good but have you ever thought about what you think is good for you may not be good in the eyes of God. Take the beloved idea of freedom for instance. It's an idea that seeks to remove all checks and balances of being a responsible individual in a society. The idea is, I get to do whatever I want, to hell with the impact my actions have on the society around me. We humans are beings that have to follow rules for the benifit of ourselves and others. We are balanced being and often require others to limit our actions to keep us from hurting ourselves and the societies we live in. Which is why even the most free of nations try to restrict freedoms. Your gripe seems to be that you want to have the kind of limitations the white man uses in his nations and not the one ms Islam suggests. So it's really just boils down to where does the limitation marker be placed on a line that suggests point A is total control and point B is total freedom and anarchy.

  • Laron Upton

    >How should I read postmodern literature as a Catholic? With a grain of salt. I've yet to see a bigger named Post-Modern philosopher who didn't take at least a moment to criticize the Church, which, in a sense, is to be expected in such a secular society. Although it seems as though they spend much less time on religion than their Nihilist and proto-PoMo counterparts (looking at you Nietzsche). But that doesn't necessarily imply that everything about PoMo is about that. As with philosophies like Nihilism, PoMo is a very wide philosophy that is very loosely defined, which allows one to subscribe to various portions while disregarding others (theres a bit of a joke in the philosophy world that states something along the lines of: over the years Post-Modernism has been defined so many different ways that the name has lost all meaning. The joke being that in modern times society has tried redefining things so many times through various ideologies, that we have lost meaning in even the most basic things, which is the core of PoMo philosophy). Much of the discussion by Post-Modernists is quite similar to what a traditionalist might talk about in terms of the degrading of social values. While a Post-Modernist might not inherently have the same expectations of society in terms of where to head (most don't expound on this), they see and understand that we are living in a time without moral values, where rampant consumerism is destroying the very foundations of what kept our species going all these years (marriage, family, religion, morality, tradition, a sprinkle of tribalism, etc), that our very existence is drowning in a lack of meaning and purpose. And without this purpose, people, and society as a whole, is starting to fall apart. Before, man would look to Christ for purpose. We lived virtuous lives with a strong sense of right/wrong, and had a goal for our lives (to have a family, to live and die with honor, to be with Christ). Now, with the lack of Him (and the values that follow Him) in society, humans have begun looking elsewhere for meaning and purpose. We (I use this term loosely) are looking to other men, to worldly pleasure, to abstract self-expression, to rampant individualism, complete and utter indifference and apathy, politics, nationalism, rampant and illogical humanism that is violently self-destructive, etc. These are all things recognized within Post-Modernism, and addressed by different philosophers in varying degrees. PoMo can be very complex. Jean Baudrillard is considered the one to have "started", if you will, the idea of PoMo. His most famous piece, *Simulacra and Simulation* (the book that inspired The Matrix movies), is often considered one of the most complex books ever written, and it's only about 160 pages long. It's a nightmare to read, but very thought provoking. >What should modern Catholics know about post-modernism? I think that Catholics share the same sentiments that most people share about PoMo, that it's some big evil that is a threat to everything they hold dear, and that it should be stopped. I very much disagree with this, because I **hate** modernity, and Post-Modernism is the destruction of Modernity coming to fruition. While it certainly can be destructive to our ideas if one chooses to allow it to be, it isn't inherently about that. I find that much more time is spent in PoMo criticizing the Modern, the capitalists and socialists, the politicians and the media, than it does even considering religion. I think that while most PoMo is typically quite atheistic, they recognize that the departure from the rule of Christendom has been as harmful as the liberals and modernists believed the Middle Ages to have been (Foucault touches on this a lot in *Discipline and Punish*. He believed that the difference in punishment for crime from then [physical suffering] and now [mental suffering] is a matter of degrees, not kind). At best, there have been no real positive changes in a large number of areas in our lives from pre-Enlightenment to Modernity. It's all been the same, just under a new banner. >How can we use it to better understand and engage with our modern society? I think being able to fully grasp modern society is something that most people living in it can't do. I think we can identify the things that bother us, but don't realize to what extent they are affecting society, or where they are coming from, or how deep it really gets. This is something that PoMo has really spent the last 30 years attacking. Understanding this allows us to better articulate the issues we have. And, as much as I'm not a Marxist, there are some really great Marxist thinkers who have gone after this very well (Gramsci comes to mind). We can say something along the lines of "feminism is bad because X, Y, Z", but that doesn't get to the root of the problem. *Why* is feminism so rampant and pervasive in contemporary society? Why do people feel like they need to make this their life's mission? Well, because of things like crippling capitalistic factors that create anxieties in us combined with a lack of true meaning and purpose to drive their lives. Women feel inadequate because capitalism tells them that they are inferior, that they aren't beautiful without more makeup, more expensive clothes, more jewelry, more more more. Advertising has replaced the Holy Scripture, money has replaced Christ, stores have replaced the Church, senselessly entertaining ourselves has replaced prayer life. It's considered a feat to sit in silence without scrolling facebook or reddit for an hour...to the point where people give it up for Lent. Through understanding underlying problems, we can begin to properly address them. >Can you go into a bit more detail on how post-modernism attacks capitalism, socialism, and any other major modernist ideologies? I've already addressed a bit on capitalism above. The big, reoccurring things I see a lot is how they address the media, and consumerism. The news, which is supposed to objectively tell us about the happenings of the world around us, has become more about ratings, advertisement, and entertainment value (think: clickbait). It's more important to them to create a scandal about something minuscule and irrelevant that the president says than it is to cover something important but might not get ratings. Objectivity and neutrality has been replaced with blatant lies. Most people can't begin to figure out what is true or not because of this. There is no line between fabrication and reality. Baudrillard argued that because of this our reality has actually become a complete fabrication. In terms of socialism, a lot of it points to the failures of the USSR and the fall of the Berlin Wall. Actually, let me rewind a bit. Capitalism and liberalism was meant to save us from the brutality of the Middle Ages. People would be free to choose their life path, the poor could become rich, economic and materialistic growth would set us free to become what we couldn't become under the rule of the Church and monarchy that had dominated western society for most of it's history. Fast forward to the 18th century, this wasn't really happening. A few were becoming rich, many were poor and hungry, children were being used as cheap labor. Imperialism, driven by capitalism, was breeding war on a large scale and would eventually lead to global wars of unimaginable horror. Step forward again, and socialism was thought to be that which would free us from the brutality of capitalism, just as capitalism was to free us. The poor wouldn't be poor anymore because everyone would have a slice of the pie. If we stopped producing for excessive profits, people wouldn't have to work so hard and they could be more free to do as they please. If we put political power in the hands of everyone, nobody can be tyrannical. Well...as we have all seen, that's not exactly what happened, and socialism ended up being just as, if not more brutal than, capitalism. Just as capitalism was just as, if not more, brutal as the Middle Ages. Millions upon millions of people starved to death under Stalin and Mao. There was massive oppression under these authoritarian regimes. People were being sent to labor camps, there were mass executions, people were afraid to speak out against any of it because they would disappear (Stasi in the GDR), etc etc. It was a massively failed experiment that didn't answer for any of the problems of the world. PoMo tends to see most ideologies as not being able to answer for the inherent problems in humanity, and often believes that they tend to exasperate them. Even if we take it to the most bleak and nihilistic end point, where our existence is a mere chance happening and there is nothing greater than ourselves, then humanity can't physically create the answers to give us any kind of meaning through ideology. For me personally, I agree that man can't create an ideology that answers for everything or fills the void in our lives that exists without our Lord. I believe that He is the driving force for our existence and meaning. To detract from that by replacing Him with ideology or other belief systems creates exponentially more problems than what might arise by having Him guide us. I hope this helps a bit. I'm in the middle of working, and trying to chase my <1yo son around the house.

  • Erwin Armstrong

    Yeah, that's more or less what happened. Here's a little background: I grew up in a Christian household but was never really encouraged to find community or actually study my faith on my own. My parents were unfortunately very lukewarm about faith and okay with just simply going to church on Sunday. I'm not blaming them for my struggles, this just happens to have been a factor. Another factor is that I've had clinical anxiety and depression issues since adolescence. By the end of high school, I was badly struggling with my social issues and discontent with life. I moved around between schools, cut myself on my thighs, and generally hated myself. I've seriously considered suicide multiple times throughout my life. In addition, I did not fit in very well socially until I got to college and even now I have a lot of trouble. With these things in mind, it's clear that I was unstable in my faith and even in my self. It's very typical for young adults to go through a huge existential self discovery phase around the end of adolescence and sometimes into their mid twenties. I'm no exception. At the end of high school I radically abandoned my faith in favor of rationalistic thinking. I read up on evolution, abiogenesis (which I still believe in but reconcile with faith) humanistic philosophy and other things. In particular I became very interested in Nietzsche's philosophy and scientism. I looked down on religion as a coping mechanism for weak minded people and those who are unable to find happiness independently. I more or less worshipped the universe for its rational and mathematical beauty and myself as the central vessel which it is experienced with. Religious people, and Christians in particular, began to look more and more ridiculous. But over time I realized something: I was unable to manufacture my own happiness. Try as I might, I was unable to find happiness in my lack of religiosity; I thought I was enlightening myself by abandoning the silly ways of faith in God and looking for real answers, but all I found was emptiness and pointlessness. The universe only made sense in a weird, twisted, and unnatural sort of way. At first I was disturbed by where I had found myself. I think Godless people tend to still find something to worship. For some it's themselves. For others it's their careers. I tried to worship myself and find my own purpose and place and happiness independently but I failed miserably. I discovered that the self is terribly unstable and that my foundation for belief (and lack thereof) had always been in myself. One day my girlfriend convinced me to go to church with her. I almost had to leave in the middle of the service. It was disgusting watching all those people embarrass themselves like that. It was hard for me to watch them go on about a God that I didn't believe in or understand. It was freaky and uncomfortable and I felt like I had walked into a cult. However, it was familiar. I had heard the songs before, heard the passages and messages spoken by other people and not very long ago. Still it was foreign and revolting. I left with a sense of disgust that didn't make sense to me. I couldn't understand why what I had just witnessed was so alarming to me. Over time that girl worked on me more and more. During my deepest depressive throws she understood me and comforted me unlike anyone had before. She understood exactly what I thought about God and life and the universe, and because she understood me she could comfort me. She never pressured me into rediscovering God, but she did set the tools for doing so out in front of me. I saw the potential in that so I gave it a shot. I started reconsidering what I believed in. At first I became more open to other thoughts and interpretations of the universe. I became less hostile to Christianity and to religion in general and was more willing to consider Christian theology from the Christian point of view. I still had (and have) some pretty intense doubts, mostly concerning the Old Testament and the general historicity of Christianity and Judaism. Despite that I was now on different ground. I was prepared to look at theism and atheism honestly. I was more prepared to honestly examine myself and why I believed what I did.   Meanwhile, I still had an inherently unstable identity and image of myself. I still worshipped my self as the center of the universe because I believed that as a brain floating in a body on a rock in space, there was no use in deluding myself that there was some higher power concerned with me, just the cold logic of the universe and the circumstances it creates. My identity was what I did, and it was grounded in my relation to the world. I put my identity in what I did as a college student, as a computer security hopeful, and as an unstable atheist. I'll tell you right now that it's a bad idea to put your identity in how you relate to the world. The world or (possibly a better term for it) civilization is a complex and impersonal machine which only cares for inputs and outputs. Civilization is the amalgamation of social constructs and economic interactions which people must partake in if they wish to accept the social contract of law and order. It doesn't see you as a person because it doesn't see anything at all. It doesn't care for you and it by nature it can't and shouldn't. I worshipped myself but that was only possible if it was grounded in how I related to the machine. It was therefore unstable and unhealthy. If you value yourself the way that machine will value you, I guarantee you will be unstable and unhappy.   It took break down after break down for me to realize this. During one week in particular I spiraled worse than ever before and the feelings of self hatred and uselessness and pointlessness resurfaced. I kept it hidden at first and turned to alcohol and weed and Xanax to cope with it. Of course it festered and grew more and more ugly. But somewhere in there i finally recognized what I had been thinking all along. I finally realized that all of my reasons to abandon Christ were rash, that I was putting my own intelligence and strength above any higher power, that I was recklessly experimenting in an unnatural state of human independence from God. I realized that I was valuing myself based off of how the world valued me. I put God in a box and said "I've got this" and went out and tried to live without Him and I failed. So many factors were working in my life to bring me to this epiphany. So many discrete and seemingly unrelated developments over many years worked together in perfect harmony to bring me to that moment and to that set of realizations about myself. First my unstable religious foundation failed. Then I wandered in search of answers and purpose outside of faith. It seemed that my heart hardened and I became hostile to God and disconnected from Him. But the reality was the exact opposite. My wandering wasn't that failing religious foundation crumbling further and further away. It was a new one being poured, this time stronger. This foundation was poured with care and tempered with honesty and mindfulness and self awareness. It was being poured just as I thought I was eroding it away piece my piece. I thought I was examining why God cannot be. Really I was examining why I must be called to Him. Meanwhile the woman that I love had been subtly and patiently teaching me. At an oddly perfect time, I learned more about the actual theology of Christianity in one of my college courses. I was given the tools to confront Christ on honest terms and decide whether I wished to accept Him or not. To me it seems like one of those books where seemingly unrelated storylines are intricately and carefully weaved together to form a single thread and a unified story. That's how I feel about coming back to Christ. All these discrete things worked together in perfect union to surprise me at a perfect time and tell me what had really been going on in my life. I still marvel at the mystery of how God can do that without any evidence of divine intervention. How does He weave together a story so specific and intricate without breaking everything else with the butterfly effect? If what happened to me, a thing that happens to countless other people across the world, can occur the way it did without disturbing the balance of the world, then there must be an omniscient and omnipresent God. But anyways, there I was at the crossroads, the Way to one hand, and independence to the other. This is a crossroad that everyone faces and one I had faced many times before, but this time I knew something about both: I knew where the latter would take me because I had been there before. I found that it was a place of sadness and emptiness. But this time and unlike any other, I was prepared to start walking down the other way. I was ready to start following Christ on that path. I'm still walking, and I believe that I will still be walking until I die. I haven't been on this Way long, but I know that it is good. I've turned around and I've looked back many times but through the scripture I know this is the way of men like me. We stumble and fall like the children we are. But each time I look forward again, I'm overcome with emotion, more intensely than ever before and more intensely than I ever imagined. I cannot explain to you the pull that I feel on my heart each timeI look forward again. Just yesterday I turned back around from looking back and cried because of love and joy for almost an hour while driving to a different city. Faith now moves me in surprising and unpredictable ways. Sorry for dropping this absolute book on you out of nowhere. I suppose I wanted to tell the story to myself just as much as to you. I hope this helps you in some way.

  • Lucious Hayes

    [***Barefoot***](http://www\.fanfiction\.net/s/11364705/1/) by [*Zaxaramas*](https://www\.fanfiction\.net/u/5569435/Zaxaramas) > Harry has the ability to learn the history of any object he touches, whether he wants to or not\. ^(*Site*: [fanfiction.net][139974019422976:site] **|** *Category*: Harry Potter **|** *Rated*: Fiction M **|** *Chapters*: 49 **|** *Words*: 138,112 **|** *Reviews*: 1,972 **|** *Favs*: 5,755 **|** *Follows*: 7,141 **|** *Updated*: 3/3 **|** *Published*: 7/7/2015 **|** *id*: 11364705 **|** *Language*: English **|** *Genre*: Adventure **|** *Characters*: Harry P., N. Tonks **|** *Download*: [EPUB][139974019422976:epub] or [MOBI][139974019422976:mobi]) [139974019422976:site]: http://www.fanfiction.net/ [139974019422976:epub]: http://www.ff2ebook.com/old/ffn-bot/index.php?id=11364705&source=ff&filetype=epub [139974019422976:mobi]: http://www.ff2ebook.com/old/ffn-bot/index.php?id=11364705&source=ff&filetype=mobi --- [***Harry Potter and the Rune Stone Path***](http://www\.fanfiction\.net/s/11898648/1/) by [*Temporal Knight*](https://www\.fanfiction\.net/u/1057022/Temporal\-Knight) > 10 year old Harry finds a chest left by his mother with books on some of her favorite subjects\. Discovering he has a talent for understanding and creating runes sets Harry onto a very different path than anyone had expected\. Shortcuts, inventions, and a bit of support go a long way\! Pairings: H/Hr/NT/FD/DG\. Ron/Molly bashing and GreaterGood\!Dumbledore\. ^(*Site*: [fanfiction.net][139974019442896:site] **|** *Category*: Harry Potter **|** *Rated*: Fiction M **|** *Chapters*: 50 **|** *Words*: 517,752 **|** *Reviews*: 4,663 **|** *Favs*: 8,596 **|** *Follows*: 9,645 **|** *Updated*: 12/28/2016 **|** *Published*: 4/15/2016 **|** *Status*: Complete **|** *id*: 11898648 **|** *Language*: English **|** *Genre*: Fantasy/Adventure **|** *Characters*: <Harry P., Hermione G., Fleur D., N. Tonks> **|** *Download*: [EPUB][139974019442896:epub] or [MOBI][139974019442896:mobi]) [139974019442896:site]: http://www.fanfiction.net/ [139974019442896:epub]: http://www.ff2ebook.com/old/ffn-bot/index.php?id=11898648&source=ff&filetype=epub [139974019442896:mobi]: http://www.ff2ebook.com/old/ffn-bot/index.php?id=11898648&source=ff&filetype=mobi --- [***Harry Potter and the Children of Change***](http://www\.fanfiction\.net/s/6764665/1/) by [*T\. E\. Tanglebrooke*](https://www\.fanfiction\.net/u/2537532/T\-E\-Tanglebrooke) > A 73 year old Harry dies in a tragic accident and finds himself in his 15 month old body again\. Young\!Tonks HP/NT/HG\. currently year 3 Disclaimer: I don't own Harry Potter or the universe he finds himself in\. ^(*Site*: [fanfiction.net][139974019109496:site] **|** *Category*: Harry Potter **|** *Rated*: Fiction T **|** *Chapters*: 62 **|** *Words*: 287,371 **|** *Reviews*: 3,885 **|** *Favs*: 6,205 **|** *Follows*: 7,017 **|** *Updated*: 9/8/2015 **|** *Published*: 2/21/2011 **|** *id*: 6764665 **|** *Language*: English **|** *Genre*: Humor/Adventure **|** *Characters*: Harry P., N. Tonks **|** *Download*: [EPUB][139974019109496:epub] or [MOBI][139974019109496:mobi]) [139974019109496:site]: http://www.fanfiction.net/ [139974019109496:epub]: http://www.ff2ebook.com/old/ffn-bot/index.php?id=6764665&source=ff&filetype=epub [139974019109496:mobi]: http://www.ff2ebook.com/old/ffn-bot/index.php?id=6764665&source=ff&filetype=mobi --- [***Strings of Fate***](http://www\.fanfiction\.net/s/8996023/1/) by [*Knife Hand*](https://www\.fanfiction\.net/u/147648/Knife\-Hand) > Being raised only by his Aunt, Harry comes to Hogwarts not only knowing about the Wizarding World, but with a kind of training no one at the school is expecting\. Chapter 28 up ^(*Site*: [fanfiction.net][139974019423816:site] **|** *Category*: Harry Potter **|** *Rated*: Fiction M **|** *Chapters*: 28 **|** *Words*: 44,231 **|** *Reviews*: 1,734 **|** *Favs*: 4,392 **|** *Follows*: 6,143 **|** *Updated*: 2/18 **|** *Published*: 2/10/2013 **|** *id*: 8996023 **|** *Language*: English **|** *Characters*: Harry P., Hermione G., N. Tonks, Susan B. **|** *Download*: [EPUB][139974019423816:epub] or [MOBI][139974019423816:mobi]) [139974019423816:site]: http://www.fanfiction.net/ [139974019423816:epub]: http://www.ff2ebook.com/old/ffn-bot/index.php?id=8996023&source=ff&filetype=epub [139974019423816:mobi]: http://www.ff2ebook.com/old/ffn-bot/index.php?id=8996023&source=ff&filetype=mobi --- [***Seven Normal years of Harry the Hufflepuff***](http://www\.fanfiction\.net/s/12085137/1/) by [*TheLemonsWillSeeYou*](https://www\.fanfiction\.net/u/5676693/TheLemonsWillSeeYou) > What if Voldemort made a mistake with his Horcruxes? What if he had truly been vanquished that fatefull night? What if the Dursley's didnt treat Harry like crap, but rather with casual indifference? Who would Harry become and what would his world look like? Read along with a seventh year Harry as he goes through his diary of Hogwarts and experience his best and worst moments\! AU ^(*Site*: [fanfiction.net][139974019335448:site] **|** *Category*: Harry Potter **|** *Rated*: Fiction T **|** *Chapters*: 70 **|** *Words*: 69,748 **|** *Reviews*: 107 **|** *Favs*: 228 **|** *Follows*: 243 **|** *Updated*: 9/9/2016 **|** *Published*: 8/4/2016 **|** *Status*: Complete **|** *id*: 12085137 **|** *Language*: English **|** *Genre*: Friendship/Romance **|** *Characters*: <Harry P., N. Tonks> **|** *Download*: [EPUB][139974019335448:epub] or [MOBI][139974019335448:mobi]) [139974019335448:site]: http://www.fanfiction.net/ [139974019335448:epub]: http://www.ff2ebook.com/old/ffn-bot/index.php?id=12085137&source=ff&filetype=epub [139974019335448:mobi]: http://www.ff2ebook.com/old/ffn-bot/index.php?id=12085137&source=ff&filetype=mobi --- [***Nobody told Me the rules***](http://www\.fanfiction\.net/s/10851278/1/) by [*Zaxaramas*](https://www\.fanfiction\.net/u/5569435/Zaxaramas) > An avid Harry Potter fan gets dropped into the wizarding world\. Metamorphing, AU goodness\. Skewed ages ^(*Site*: [fanfiction.net][139974019445480:site] **|** *Category*: Harry Potter **|** *Rated*: Fiction M **|** *Chapters*: 68 **|** *Words*: 149,146 **|** *Reviews*: 641 **|** *Favs*: 1,478 **|** *Follows*: 1,056 **|** *Updated*: 3/3/2015 **|** *Published*: 11/26/2014 **|** *Status*: Complete **|** *id*: 10851278 **|** *Language*: English **|** *Genre*: Humor/Adventure **|** *Characters*: Harry P., Fleur D., N. 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  • Lane MacGyver

    I totally understand the confusion and its hard to make the connections without understanding whats behind the thinking. So the thing that you are researching is a 'nature vs nurture' debate. This is at the crux of a lot of social science thinking and its the exact question of if you have two people with exactly the same genetics, but put them in two completely different social situations, then to what extent are the traits they develop genetic, and to what extent social. There's not space here to get to the nitty gritty of it, but in short the work has been done with twin studies, and will get you started. The methodological limitation though in regard to gender specifically is that its not possible to raise a child in a social situation that does not feature gender inequality. Some reading on twin studies, generally, though, will help you get your head around the extent to which a lot of human characteristics are nurtured (as opposed to 'hard wired'). So, taking a short cut here, because I think I might be able to come at this in a way thats a bit different to how its usually discussed, I am a 45 year old male with a 5 year old daughter. One of my objectives with my daughter has always been, since she was born, to raise her stong, independent, critically thinking, and confident she can do anything she sets her mind to. I would like her to feel like she lives in a world where anything is possible, and she can get what she wants from life by exercising her will and working hard. Thing is, from the word go, there are things you have no control over as a parent that get in the way of this. If you take a young child to a toy store, then you will find that there is the 'toys' section, where all the 'general' toys are; soldiers, action figures, trucks, guns, tools, construction sets, etc etc. There's also a 'girls' section, where 'girls' toys are packaged in pink, they have pictures of girls on them, and the toys are things like dolls, plush ponies, kitchens, ironing sets, toy washing machines, all that kind of stuff. So if you think about this for a second, from the minute my daughter goes in there to look for things she might want to buy, she's being told what 'girls' play with, and what 'boys' play with. Implicitly, adults are being marketed to the same way. But what if I want my daughter playing with an electronics set or an engineering set? - we can get her one, but more often than not the packaging is of boys. Again, not very subtle implicit messages about who does what. If you take a stroll in any large toy store you will see this playing out. Its interesting when you look at it from a young girls point of view. The other thing I love to do with my daughter is read to her. I started with very fond memories of the books I started on when I was a kid. We started reading to her at 6 months old. By the time she was three we were reading chapter books to her (ie books with chapters and less pictures or no pictures at all, as opposed to 'picture books'). So of course I did research and started reading her classics; charlie and the chocolate factory, (all of the roald dahl books, actually), the Narnia series, Despereaux, Sideways School, Wind in the Willows, Secret Garden, etc, etc. I think we have probably got through easily 100 books per year for the last 2 years. Thing is, if you look at kids 'classics' some very interesting trends emerge. Firstly, in the majority (not all) of the older books, the lead character is male. In a lot of the stories, in fact, most of the characters are male. In books where most of the characters are male, there are female characters, but often these characters are 'support people' to the male characters (aunties, sisters, mums). dont get me wrong, nothing wrong with being an auntie, a sister or a mum - all completely well and good. the issue is the patterns and themes that evolve over time; boys and men 'do' the important things. They have the adventures. They are the 'agents' of the story (here, I mean the people that instigate and propel the narrative). By contrast, girls are supporters, nurturers, helpers. Dahl is a fantastic author, for example, but the only book of his I can think of that has a female lead is 'Matilda'. there may be others, but I can say for certain the majority of his work is about male characters. Let me be clear I am not saying that nurturing or helping is 'bad', but think for a second about what sort of message this would, over time, communicate to a young, impressionable mind. So once I realized what was going on, I started mixing up the books so that if we read a book with a male lead, I make sure theres a female lead with a lot of agency in the next book we pick up. (Her favourite book is actually 'redwall'. This is a fantastic story but totally conventional inasmuch as the characters are predominantly male, and only one female character is 'active'. Of TWO female characters total - the other is the *love interest* for the hero. Her primary characteristic is 'attractiveness'). Yopu might think Im a bit nuts being concerned about all this stuff. But here's the thing - at the age she's at, her mind is very impressionable, and what I dont want to be teaching her is that her role in life is to be a helper to makes, or an object for the gratification of male gaze. What I want her to read about is girls who are in charge, leading, being in control of their destiny and having domain over others - just as much as male characters do. Because I think this is really important. Its not hard, either, if you get a bunch of kids movies from, say 1980-2000 and do this type of analysis. There are 'movies' and there are 'girl movies'. The 'movies' either involve a gender mix or predominantly male characters. The 'girl movies' feature fairies, ponies, animals, friendship struggles, etc. Fortunately, filmmakers in the last 10 years have turned things around considerably, but thats another story and I dont want to bog things down here. So these are the stories we have been telling our kids for... well for every. Boys do these things, and girls do those things. Something interesting to consider; parents of boys will read them classics without a second thought. Indeed, I see no reason not to read children classics, as they contain a lot of interesting stuff. (I have a son, he's now 15). Parents of girls also read them the same classics, but there probably wasnt as much critical thinking about that previously as there is now. So, in short, girls read girl and boy stories. And so far, this is unsurprising, right? But here's where it gets really quirky, if you talk to parents of boys about whether they read them books like Pippi Longstocking, Heidi, Amelia Bedelia, Anne of Green Gables (the list could go on, but you get the picture), you may get raised eyebrows. Because those are 'girl books'. (For girls). (Because they are about girls, and why would boys want to read about girls?). Recently we read some stuff on pirates. Some of this was fiction, but I also like to complement the fiction we read with non fiction so my daughter can make the connection between a 'story' and 'facts' that actually happened. We talked in pirate. She did "oooh-arrrgh" and "shiver me timberrrs". We did pirate scowls, and pretended to have peg legs. We played games where she was the captain of the ship and in charge of all the "scurvy dogs" in the crew. It was great fun, and both of us still have a 'pirate language' we can use and fall back on jokingly from time to time. But here's the thing. We read these non-fiction books about pirates after doing all of this, and it really saddened me as I realised that she's looking at a book entirely populated by men. Women werent even *allowed* on a lot of ships (considered bad luck). And I was thinking about how we had played pirates, and how she was pretending to be the terror of the seven seas, and then as we were reading this book with all these pictures of ships and sailors and she asked me why there werent any girls.... There's also research about how adults treat children based on perceived gender. From the word go, babies receive different types of attention based on whether they are perceived as male or female. Parents of small children introduce them to different types of stimuli based on the extent to which they want them to fit into gender roles. Up until not too long ago, schools, also, had different protocols for boys and girls. I hope this makes sense, and I am trying to answer your question. Sorry for the length but I hope you find the point relevant. The point is, we start teaching our kids differently from the time they can start to understand and observe the world around them. And this goes on and on in a self-perpetuating social system that is massively influential on who 'boys' are (and what they 'should' do), and who 'girls' are, (and what they should do). So when you ask the question about whether its hard-wired, what I would say is, 'yes... but'. Yes, women have different bodies and hormones and musculature, BUT (and its a big but), it matters what we tell our kids about what options in life are available to them. The thing I wonder is, what would things be like for girls if they were taught from the word 'go' about the world being a place where they can do anything.

  • Jakob Feeney

    I will be the first to say that I don't always "get" high/vogue/avant garde fashion. Sometimes I'll see a piece I really love (even if it's impractical and not for normal wear), other times I hate a piece. It tends to vary and I'll have no idea where I'll land until I actually see the item(s) in question. I don't think clothes have to be functional or practical - that fashion can merge with art and exist purely to be unique, beautiful, and interesting. This is a bit off-topic but I tend to appreciate when books take the opportunity to use fashion as a way to bring drama or insight to a story. One of the most recent examples I can think of happens to be the The Hunger Games series. I will say that the way I imagined the garments seemed a lot more memorable and stunning in my mind than the on screen adaptations...but that's a different conversation entirely. Now this is “high” fashion, which is almost but not quite a world unto its own, since few people buy and wear on the street the outfits touted at these shows. The shows themselves, as is thus evident, are mainly for seamstresses (and seamsters?) to talk and boast among themselves. So it's clear that the author doesn't think much of this industry...or at least what they call 'high fashion,' which *would* be fine except for the fact that there's really something for everyone if you take the time to look. I just instinctively mistrust anyone that says they *hate*: video games, movies, fashion, music etc etc because there are so many different *types* and genres and varieties. I have the same eye-roll reaction when someone claims they hate working out. No, you just haven't found an activity you enjoy yet and you probably have a very narrow view of what 'working out' looks like. Anyway, moving on. > As in much modern “art”, the goal is to be as “transgressive” as possible. This sets up a competition to see who can be the most lunatic. Full disclosure, I had to look up what 'transgressive' meant (in my mind I thought 'travelling' and 'aggressive') for anyone else that hasn't heard this word before: - involving a violation of accepted or imposed boundaries, especially those of social acceptability. "her experiences of transgressive love with both sexes" - relating to fiction, cinematography, or art in which orthodox cultural, moral, and artistic boundaries are challenged by the representation of unconventional behavior and the use of experimental forms. - GEOLOGY (of a stratum) overlapping others unconformably, especially as a result of marine transgression. All right, so I disagree that 'modern art' can be so narrowly defined, and that modern art/high fashion etc can be so easily boiled down to 'lunatics.' Yes, fashion is a highly competitive field, but at the same time there are *lots* and *lots* of designers, many that specialize in their own particular niches. Not everyone has a show at fashion week, or even *wants* to get to fashion week...but they are still designers, bringing their visions to life and embracing their passion. I *do* agree that some of the chatter about fashion (and cooking, and decorating) can get a little too over the top and sound really stuffy and outright ridiculous - but that's by no means the standard (in my opinion). > Palomo Spain is a current leader in the race to total insanity. I don't know enough about Palomo (one way or the other) to agree or disagree with this statement. It does make me wonder however, because there are some pretty nutty things happening in other parts of the world when it comes to gender, equality, and acceptance. > Vogue, the magazine of gloomy, emaciated creatures and celebrity tittle tattle Okay, so another thing the author dislikes: Vogue. Got it. I've never bought the magazine, I have watched a documentary (I think it was vogue) about getting ready for a shoot or making a dress...I don't really remember. Again, skinny women in fashion is the *norm* so to suggest the origin of this 'toxic' idea was the result of this magazine seems (again) a bit simplistic. Out of curiosity I did a search of Vogue covers and found this: > September, 1933 Vogue has its first known cover girl in the form of the bisexual (and biracial) model Toto Koopman. She later became a spy for the Allies in Italy, where she was apprehended and escaped on multiple occasions. George Hoyningen-Huene/Vogue/Condé Nast Tell me more about how narrow, restrictive, backwards, and 'frivolous' this magazine is supposed to be again? Think about that for a second 1933, and they're featuring a biracial and bisexual woman. [Here](http://tmagazine.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/08/21/vogue-magazine-list-10-most-groundbreaking-covers-in-the-history-of-vogue/?_r=0) is the link for anyone that is curious. The women may all share similar slim builds, but they can (and generally do) have wildly different backgrounds. If anything, fashion tends to be one of the most accepting fields for people with unusual features, and unique looks. Sure, they can't be land whales, but I've heard too many 'rags to riches' stories *about* models that came from nowhere and achieved an entirely new life thanks to their physical looks. I don't think it's right to demonize anyone for making the most of what they have and following their god given right to pursue happiness. > Let’s repeat the lowlights: gave a bejeweled and feather-trimmed middle finger to the unaccepting and the regressive, clothes are clothes and can be worn by anyone. Intentional transgressiveness. Okay, so this is factually correct. Clothes *are* clothes, and they *can* be worn by anyone. People can do whatever they want (within the law), but that doesn't free them from criticism or judgement (here's looking at you "I can free my tits but men better not be turned on!" women). > Altogether, the Palomo Spain fall 2017 collection looked like what would happen if a young Spanish prince got into his mother, the queen’s, wardrobe. Or if a matador was feeling a bit kinky. (It also owed a major debt to the in-your-face hauteur of the the bad boys of the so-called Movida Madrileña of post-Franco Spain, like Pedro Almodovar.) The show opened with a feminine take on suiting, with ruffles, bell sleeves, and exposed shoulders. And closed with virginal boys in all white gowns and garters, plus one latex suit that resembled a bridegroom’s condom. The only thing that bothers me about the W Magazine summary is the 'virginal boys' line and that's because I think we *do* normalize the sexualization of children, and it's disturbing in my mind. I know there's really nothing *new* about using boys and girls right on (or under) the cusp of 'appropriateness' to sell (via sexual appeal) different products. There was a really controversial Levi's ad with a tween girl as I recall, and jeans aren't exactly the cutting edge of fashion last I checked. I could be completely wrong - but I *think* both the Vogue and W reviews are supposed to be a bit tongue-in-cheek and sensationalist (which is fitting given the actually collection/models). > Recalling the words, “A woman shall not be clothed with man’s apparel, neither shall a man use woman’s apparel: for he that doeth these things is abominable before God,” I say good riddance. I could be wrong...but historically the Pope (and many wealthy elites) have been both religious and interested in displaying their power and wealth with fashion. Technically speaking, you could also point out that men used to wear heels, and makeup, there's also the traditional Scottish clothing to consider, not to mention that if you get *technical* many religious robes *do* look like dresses. From a religious/conservative perspective - I completely understand why fashion maybe isn't something that gets celebrated a whole lot. I guess my main criticisms are this, and they really have nothing to do with the value of the show as a fashion statement etc. I dislike normalizing the sexualization of boys and girls. I think people can wear whatever they want, and people are free to *react* to those choices. I do think the fashion industry provides a lot of opportunities to people that otherwise wouldn't be able to attain a high level of success (sports offers similar opportunities as well). I really don't *get* these pieces. The models look greasy, sad, and dirty...so this isn't the first (or last) collection that misses the mark for me. At the same time I don't 'hate' Vogue, fashion, or even the people that *do* like this show. I know that androgynous models have been highly sought after in the past. Those that can pass as both male and female. I believe there's a very beautiful male model that has posed shirtless on the cover of a magazine - and it was pulled for being to risque because people didn't *realize* it was a man. Fashion has always (to my knowledge) pushed the limits, sought out new territory, and purposely tried to shock, amaze, and stun the public. So, this seems about par for the course. Furthermore, if *anyone* looks to movies, fashion, or music as *moral guides*....I think *that's* the bigger indication of lunacy.

  • Jed Von

    I can offer a bit of a different perspective than either camp. If you talk to the classical guys, they're pretty snobby. They would be all elitist and think you're a peasant. So you're not gonna get what's going on with them by trying to talk to them. Most are forced into that whole realm. Parents are likely rich. Upper class. The parents probably also decide who were their kids friends when growing up. If their kids would try to hang out with poor kids, or later, ones who don't go to university or have good jobs, the parents wouldn't like that. They probably get their children playing those classical instruments from a young age. Had no choice. Look at them in orchestras, nobody's smiling. Half of them probably don't like it. How would you react to being forced to do something and had no choice. Another aspect of playing that type of music is they're extremely strict about any screwing up. That's why they're so serious. A million notes going on, have to change the page with your hand but you need them to play all those notes. I was looking at some of those instruments. The violin has no frets like a guitar. How are you supposed to know what note it is. Could be in between notes. How's that for a whole other level of difficulty. Then you play the strings with this bow. How are you supposed to choose a middle string and not hit the other. Can't twang the note like a guitar pic. It just goes back and forth. Then you get these horn instruments. 3 or more buttons to push and from combinations of those, you're supposed to play all kinds of notes. Now you can't just play one note like pressing a piano key, you have to remember the combination of however many buttons, to play that one note. I was looking at them, one girl was playing the big tuba. You'd see her eyes scrambling at all the jumble of notes. Plus look at her breathe to play those notes. I could picture passing out from too much inhaling and exhaling. Another thing to remember about all their instruments, is they can keep going even though the power goes out. You try that with any other mainstream music. I got into classical when I ran out of my own note combinations around 2000. I can't play piano, pretty much only Mary had a little lamb. lol. In the 90's had a few guitars and basses. Chords seemed odd, why are you tuning those two smaller strings unlike the rest. I just tuned it like a 6 string bass. Probably was too complicated to get the fingers to do chords anyways. Had a few of my own riff combinations I could think of but ran out. Wanted to keep playing around with making music so borrowed notes from public domain classical. I'd have them play with midi instruments like distortion guitar and bass. Replace the harpsichord with those. Tested out making my own instruments made from sound effects, in the same key as piano. Stuff like dogs, for example. Whatever kind of noises you can record. Can be rough and be off-key. Have a piano note looping in the background while you try to harmonize what note it's supposed to be. Just melodyne saying a sound is that piano key, isn't always the case. It'll be close, you might have to nudge it a bit up or down to match a piano key. Had tens of thousands of classical songs from all kinds of composers. Some of the stuff could be Beethoven, Mozart or Bach, or some obscure guy. It wasn't so much who as what it sounded like. A big problem is trying to find usable material. Can't just grab whatever, lots of it can sound bad. Takes a while to find interesting stuff. These guys think it's "artsy" for notes to not mix well together. Go thru songs and try to weed out those bad sections. Not easy piecing things together after to keep it flowing. Most classical has no drums. Some might have a metronome going on. Sometimes notes don't go to it. Lotsa fun trying to put this stuff to drums. What happens after that even though you have a snare or what would be a metronome, now it can sound odd. These guys may not give a damn about the metronome sometimes. So even if you add drums, something may seem like it's not right. They can get a little crazy too. When I test out changing these instruments to distortion guitar and add metal drums, those notes are as fast as metal guitarists. These guys go up and down, all over the place. When you look at some of these notes, it can be quite a bit going on. Sometimes you'll open up a song and they'll have several tracks of notes in one track. You have to figure out how to separate things. It's like, ok what would be the left hand and right hand here, looks like 3, 4, 5 hands. Also check out some of these composers original hand written stuff. Beethoven was like a doctor's note with his chicken scratch. Looking at multi-track orchestra notes, lots of times you'll have a few guys playing the same set of notes, but on different instruments. That's handy to weed out duplicates. The last track I replaced a whole orchestra with only guitars, either lead or rhythm, and bass guitar. Tricky too when you want simpler notes but they're doing all kinds of chords. It's like, which do I choose for let's say a simple bass line, or lead notes when there are none. How I'd choose some is as you go along watch for which notes are the furthest up or down. Works ok. Listening to classical, a lot of it is old, from like 1700 or whatever. It's a different style of melodies compared to these days. Some of it can be happy. They like to do this twinkling on notes back and forth quickly at the end of things. They have their little catchy melodies you can sort of whistle. Tricky though because violins or something could be playing those and that's back and forth longer notes. More like a drone or something compared to short piano notes. What seems to happen is there's styles during certain years. Other centuries might sound similar. Then you get into the 1800's and early 1900's. It's different types of melodies. Some of the earlier stuff can be more happier notes. Gets more serious later. Most of the recognizable guys were from long ago. You never hear of some new guy being a great composer these days. It's sort of like painting artists. They need to be long dead before they're recognized. I was over in the classical subreddit, wondering.. they're all stuck in the past only playing old stuff. Can't you think of new melodies. I don't know. I guess it's a little tricky, you'd have to be the composer. Most of those guys would be one dude in an orchestra. So they play somebody else's notes all the time. They're not the composer. You're never going to be written about in the history books by being some dude who plays an instrument and there's two dozen other dudes in the band. But, that's the way it goes with that stuff. So they're all around crabby, pretty much. No way they can be great. They're forced into it by their parents. Absolutely complex notes, and combinations you need to do to play a proper note. Meanwhile, you screw up once, you're out. A lot of the music mood is serious too. Goes on bad tangents that sound bad. Some of these odd chords. All this crap they gotta deal with and the general public, when they listen to it, they think it sounds bad a lot. They think people who play classical are not "cool". Dealing with all that crap, and aren't really into it because they're forced because of their parents. And then no respect from the general public. Meanwhile the only people who are into it is the 1% upper class. Stuck in their ways from centuries ago. Can't change anything. Have to play unplugged instruments. Can't experiment. Have to stick to however they compose the music with the song structure. You can't come in there and do anything groundbreaking. There's no pioneering going on in classical music. That was all done around the time of Bach, Beethoven and Mozart and that's about it. Maybe a little bit since then. When's the last time you heard of a great composer. They're probably running out of note combinations like mainstream music. All the riffs are used up. So they're stuck in the past doing "cover songs" too. Sounds like washed-up 60's rock bands who had hits years ago but now tour casinos doing cover songs. Ya got the same thing in both realms. All washed-up and nothing new. Now, you're wondering what the deal is, about classical. Why it's handy for studying or soothing on the brain compared to other types of music. Well, that one you pointed out, "this modern song". What makes it irritating is the fucking drum. Plus he's experimenting with bits of tones for that. Gets on your nerves. The whole reason classical doesn't do that is because it doesn't have that constant kick and snare. Could have answered you with just that last paragraph. haha. But naw.. I like to get into things deeper. When you talk about classical, they're a snobby crabby bunch, and that's why. They just get it from all the way around. Plus the mainstream public doesn't respect it. Meanwhile sometimes today's stupid music with a few notes, boum tss boum tss boum tss 'll have a billion plays. lol. And there the classical guys are, completely busting their ass. No matter what they'd do in that genre they're guaranteed to keep going nowhere.

  • Charlene Mertz

    >Read the Camus, Sartre, etc. Not the person who makes the leap of faith because why the hell not. You can't make yourself believe anyways. Camus and Sartre were just building on their predecessors. They would both agree with the notion that there's no objective morality without God. Sartre rejected the notion that morality could have any basis, or that there was any proper way to live your life. Camus emphasized rebellion, also pointing out how there's no inherent point to life but we should live anyways just to be free. I've read a good deal of both of them, they would probably agree with the claims I've been making. They're just building on the work of Nietzsche, Dostoyevsky, and Kierkegaard. Camus actually wrote a play adaptation of one of Dostoyevsky's books, Demons. He once said he regarded the book as one of the 5 most important books he ever read in his life. A book where one of the central themes is the social problems that arise from atheism, and the necessity of religion. You're not entirely mischaracterizing Kierkegaard, [although you shouldn't be so dismissive of him. You can get a lot out of reading him as an atheist.](https://www.reddit.com/r/philosophy/comments/1ecrsu/what_can_atheists_get_out_of_reading_kierkegaard/) He's one of the most important thinkers who ever lived, and heavily influenced everyone who came after him, religious or not. >Read up on Sam Harris's Moral Landscape and the Ted lecture about morality in animals. I've read a lot of Sam Harris. There's huge holes in his conception of morality. He's trying to say you can solve the is/ought gap with utilitarianism, and then saying we can do that through science because brain scans. Utilitarianism is abhorrent, and I would again direct you to Crime and Punishment to see why. 'Well being,' is a murky undefinable concept, how could it possibly be measured? Who's to say 'well being' is even a good thing? What about the idea that all growth and fulfillment comes through suffering? You could redefine 'well being' to include suffering, but then how would you measure that? Is the goal of life simply to be happy? If someone made a machine that put you in a fantasy world where you were infinitely happy for the rest of your life, and the machine was so powerful you would forget about your old life, should you get in? Shouldn't we all get in? It would be better for our 'well being.' In fact, this machine already exists; people do this all the time. It's called heroin. Go out and overdose on heroin. You will be happier than you could possibly imagine and forget all about your responsibilities or mortality as you die. Obviously people shouldn't do heroin, but it's easy to logically justify it. Without God, there's no reason not to other than, 'my conscious tells me not to.' That's a good reason, but there's nothing to make it 'objectively true.' >If you have good reasons to kill someone that of course that's justifiable. That would be justifiable with or without a God(s). Ah, here is where we run into issues. This is exactly what 'no morality without God' means. If there's no God, then there's nothing to keep people in check. If you have a good reason to kill then kill is what you're saying. The same applies to torture. If torturing people will save lives, we might as well torture. If torturing children will save lives, we should do that too. Theft is okay too, if you can justify it. Someone might have worked to get something, but that would do more good in someone else's hands so we should steal it from them and give it to the poor. That's good. Telling lies is obviously good in a lot of situations, I should start lying to everyone to make them happier. Utilitarian logic can be used to justify anything. That's the crux of the issue. Do you think human beings are smart enough to know the consequences of their actions? How do I know that torture is really going to save lives? How do I know that killing a bad person is really the better thing to do? Every one of your actions has huge unintended consequences. The world is enormously complex. Moral absolutes like 'don't kill,' 'don't steal,' have a sense of karma behind them. Maybe you'll be in a situation where you're sure that stealing or killing will be better, but what if you're wrong? >Is that why they freaked out at Copernicus when they realized that they've been affirming that the Earth was still/unmoving because of the Bible for centuries? Copernicus was a clergyman who died of illness. His work on heliocentrism only finished printing as he died. The controversy over it was mild. The Pope and many Cardinals at the time were interested in his theory, and he was encouraged the publish it. [The controversy didn't actually start till 3 years after he died. He was denounced by some Dominican authors who were defending the absolute truth of scripture,](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catholic_Church_and_science#Copernicus) which wasn't the position of the catholic church at the time. The catholic church had been treating 'Genesis' as allegorical a far back as the third century. 'Absolute truth of scripture' is something espoused by some American Protestants and was only really emphasized in the past century. The Catholic church never had that position. The long standing position of the church was that the scripture wasn't science, and that when it contradicted common sense it was meant to be read as allegory. To be fair, the church eventually did condemn heliocentrism about 100 years later, when Galileo began advocating for it. Galileo was forced to abandon the theory, but was later allowed to write a book on it provided 'he didn't take sides.' In the book he put the pope's arguments against heliocentrism in the mouth of a 'buffoon' like character, and was punished for offending the pope. He was later tried and had to spend the rest of his life under house arrest. Opposition to heliocentrism dropped over the next century. >What even are Christian ethics? It's pretty much the golden rule. Which you pointed out has been around for much longer. The question is, how do we justify it? It's justified by fear of God. Without that, there's no reason you can't break the golden rule in the name of utilitarianism, which means anything goes. Christianity is grounded in Platonism, especially the idea of an all powerful monotheistic God that's the source of all Goodness. He is the platonic form of goodness. People can say 'lets follow the golden rule' and live their lives for a while, it's happened as you pointed out. The philosophical problem with is that there's no reason to. >Our whole society is structured around Enlightenment thinking. What exactly is enlightenment thinking? To me, it looks like a bunch of christians, or at the very least diets, in a christian culture trying to figure out how to justify christian values. >Few. Lol. They were doing God's will. When God tells you to kill your child it's good. When God tells you to commit genocide against another group, it's good. Is that good? Read Kierkegaard, he addresses this. God is good, he is the source of goodness. So if God comes down and tells you to do something, you ought to suspend whatever conception of ethics you have and do what he says. Since he is God. God doesn't talk to people very often. Some people have mental illnesses and act on them, but those things happen regardless of religious belief. >Where does 'goodness' come from, if not from God? >Socialization Great! What enforces that? What makes it objective? Remember, the idea isn't that there's no morality without God. The idea is that there's nothing to justify objective morality without God. You can say 'goodness' comes from socialization, but then goodness is all relative and thus there isn't really such thing as objective goodness. We would all have different conceptions of it. >From what I've seen he doesn't believe in a literal God. One can have a transcendental "experience" without believing in God. "Everything I'm going to say is a metaphor ........." He's an Atheist. [Here's Jordan Peterson on a panel of theists vs atheists passionately arguing against atheism, and atheist morality. ](https://youtu.be/48V0m2lia5U?t=284) The metaphor thing doesn't mean it's not true, it just means it's hard to describe. Have you ever taken acid or had some other transcendental experience? It's almost impossible to put into words, which is why he says it's a metaphor. He tends to dodge the question of outright belief in the supernatural, (something Jung did a lot) but he clearly thinks that the metaphysical foundation provided by religion is necessary for civilization to work. He's also open about having transcendent religious experience. He has outright described himself as a christian, although a strange one. He has gone on television several times arguing against atheism, going so far as to say they should be shamed. Would you call such a person an atheist?

  • Cathryn Rutherford

    "War crimes!" shouted Cesar off to my left. "War crimes are the answer to this!" I rolled my eyes. It was the fifth time since our arrival and decanting that Cesar had proclaimed victory over the planet Earth. The fifth. It would only be a second before Amelia-- "*Won't work.*" Amelia said pointedly. "Nobody pays any attention to the Hague. Anyone important enough to make the call still won't be powerful enough to drag in a leader of a standing country. If we're going to topple a nation so we can take it over from within, you have to do better than war crimes!" "Amelia, shush." I hissed. "We're in a library. You saw how these people acted at the last one. You're being too loud." Amelia rolled her eyes. Well, her host's eyes. The real Amelia didn't have eyes, she was a wad of cellulose with segmented legs, filled with firefly-like neurons, and coiled up inside the body's skull. Her normal appearance and personality left something to be desired, but I would choose no other Archivist for our Divide & Conquer team. We met in the local equivalent to college and formed the dream partnership that got us into the galactic championships. Cesar on the other hand was new. I'm not even sure what he studied or how he passed the entry requirements, but we were assigned Cesar at the same time we were assigned Earth. I figured it was my fault after offending the judges at the last match. They didn't appreciate that our team passed advanced technologies to a species to encourage a rabid failure of their ecosystem, so that we could repossess it the world under Galactic Endangerment law. I was also starting to wonder if Cesar was part of our punishment. I dragged a hand back through my body's hair and affected a sigh to keep up appearances. "Alright, we only have five Earth years to pull this off and the clock is ticking. We need better ideas than what we've had so far." Cesar sat back in his chair. He was already totally comfortable with his body, it was roughly human-shaped normally and he smelled bad. He fit right in on Earth. "I have read your histories, both of you, and you play dirty. But I'm not sure that's going to work here." Amelia hissed at Cesar. "And why is that? We've been crushing our matches for a hundred years. What makes this place so different?" "They're crazy." I said. "I don't want to agree with Cesar, but he's right." Cesar stared at me. "I'm happy you agree, but why wouldn't you want to? If I'm right, I'm right." Amelia smirked. "It might be because your presence is offensive." "Children? Really?" I asked, and both looked away. "What do we have access to?" "The world court at this... United Nations." Amelia offered, waving her hand at a pile of political science books. "I don't think anyone takes it seriously. Even if we undermined it, it doesn't appear this global organization really has the pull to do anything. They just... shame countries they don't like, and hope that making them feel bad will achieve something." I rolled my eyes; outside two, inside six. "That tactic didn't work on Vorhesa, either. Although it was fun watching the competition try." "What happened on Vorhesa?" Cesar asked. "Daycare." Amelia snorted. "It turned out the species sent their elderly politicians to this massive international organization to argue about their feelings and opinions. Turned out that it had no pull, it was daycare. For senescence." I nodded. "We took Vorhesa by undermining the legitimacy of the education system, filling the media with fake information, and fomenting internal struggle. They were in a state of early capitalism, so when panic started we offered to buy all of the land. All of it. We owned the planet in a year due to that panic." Amelia sighed wistfully. "That was a good match." "But what about Earth?" I asked. "We're here now. Could we run that propaganda treatment here?" Cesar shook his head. "Too late. They've done that to themselves. None of them trust each other, they don't trust their governments, and even their smallest communities stare at each other with suspicion. They still divide themselves by shallow external characteristics and when all else fails, fall back on aesthetics. It's a total shit show. They're media is a circus." I tapped my pen on my notebook, looking out over the law library and down at the stacks on the table. When we first arrived, we thought the chaos of the planet would make it an easy match. But we hadn't even found our opponents yet. They were nowhere to be seen, and on the coin flip, they had first-landing advantage. They could be anywhere, and yet... Nothing. Not even an attempt on our lives yet. That was totally unnatural. "The world is also a mess." Amelia added. "The environment is collapsing due to over-consumption, the population is breeding out of control, they have warring ideologies that get in the way of agreeing on... anything. It's a mess. A total mess." I stared at my notebook again. I had in my own readings discovered some possibilities, but I was hesitant to suggest them. It was too insane and too overt. It would make us total targets, but it presented a possible endgame that would be faster than any we had tried before. "What if we go around the bureaucracy? Popular uprisings, that sort of thing?" I asked. "We've never done a match by attrition. I don't think our opponents would see that coming." Cesar's eyes widened. "That's insane. We'd end up dead. The first one to go is the demagogues after the populist's take power. Even the history here agrees on that. Have you read about this Lenin guy? His own friend murdered him. His friend." Amelia shrugged. "It's worth a try. What do you have in mind?" I flipped open the notebook and looked deep into the nauseating mess of notes I had there. They presented the absolute worst case scenario plan I had ever devised, and it broke both of my hearts to even consider it. I tapped my pen against the book. "I..." "Out with it!" Amelia scowled. "Or I'm going to take your notes and read them myself." I scowled back at her. "Alright, I've been reading about a global organization that may or may not exist, but an overwhelming number of humans believe does. It's called the Illuminati, and they assume this group is pulling threads from behind the scenes. That this secretive cabal is twisting and turning every world event to their own whim, dancing everyone on puppet strings." Amelia shook her head and sat back, eyes narrowing. "And?" "What if we built it? This Illuminati thing?" Cesar shook his head as well, rolling it around on his neck. "Never work. They're so skeptical they don't even listen to their skeptics, that won't work." His second set of eyelids nictated, "I don't know about that... They're primed for it." I scratched my head with the pen. "The legends are all in place, better than if we set it up ourselves. There is already a messiah in place and everything. All we would have to do is offer up a perfect proof, totally manufactured, and they would eat it up." Amelia and Cesar shared a look, then back at me. Amelia spoke up first. "What do you have in mind?" "We would need someone to act as our Emissary, to confirm the Messiah's beliefs, and bring about the uprisings." "And?" Cesar asked. His eyes shifted left and right to make sure nobody was watching, only for his long tongue to curl out and lick his eyes. I had to admit, they looked pretty dry. The air in the law library was like breathing razors. "...I want you to be the Emissary, Cesar." "What?" Amelia howled, then nervously lowered her voice. "We barely know this guy and you want him to do it? He doesn't have the training for this." Cesar looked unsure, but he stayed quiet. "The Messiah will make up for it. I'm sure of it. He is so ignorant, so self-blinded, he will believe anything if it confirms his longstanding thoughts. Total hubris. He'll burn himself alive for an audience, too, just for the ratings. He's perfect. Plus, he has a thing." Amelia smirked. "What thing?" "He's one of those people who believe that lizard people run everything." I added, pointedly looking at Cesar. "If a lizard person approached him, he'd gobble it right up. I have all the research done. I know everything about the Messiah." "Oh." Amelia said, shuddering. "I see what you mean. And with Cesar being Urantian..." "Uh-huh." Cesar sighed. "Specists. If we're going to do this, I guess let's just do it. Who is this Messiah? Who am I taking my skin off for? It's embarrassing, but if it'll win us the match, I'll do it. That's why we're here, right?" I nodded and folded over the first page of my notebook. The words were oil on my tongue, revolting from the time I spent reviewing the research. I had spent hundreds of hours listening to the potential Messiah, just in case, and it all bubbled back up in the form of acid around the stones of my crop, leaving my chest tight. It was stressful just thinking about it. "The Messiah and future ruler of Earth is a man named Alex Jones."

  • Francesca Gleason

    Here's the first one I have handy, for the book that ended up being called *The Mad Apprentice*. (Middle-grade fantasy) [Book Two -- Alice's Labyrinth](#s " A year has passed since Alice came to the Library. In that time she's bound several additional creatures, and Geryon tells her she's making satisfactory progress. Alice, suspicious of her master, is not satisfied, and so unbeknownst to him works with Ending to piece together what she can about 'real magic' -- the process of binding words into the magic books that cements a Reader's power. This is slow going and somewhat dangerous, but Alice perseveres, and she's now able to write simple magical spells into books, or try to alter or erase another Reader's work. The one thing she has not been able to do is use the dragon, or even speak to it again. Given free run of the library, she spends time with Flicker and the other book-creatures, who have somewhat grudgingly come to accept that she's different from the usual callously exploitive Reader. Alice even visits Flicker's homeworld, inside a world-book that leads to a dimension of flames, to see the brother that she rescued and help secure the fire-sprite equivalent of vermin to feed Mr. Black's furnace. One day in December, Geryon summons Alice, looking particularly grave. He tells her that something very rare has happened: one of the old Readers, Esau-of-the-Waters has died. This is something that occasionally occurs by accident, but in this case the cause was the one thing all of the paranoid, fractious Readers can agree to despise. Esau was murdered by his apprentice, Jacob, who has taken over his fortress and library for himself. He tells her that putting down a threat like this is the only time all the Readers work together, and that she's to go to Esau's fortress, meet with the apprentices sent by the other Readers, and destroy Jacob. Alice, while not sure she's up to 'destroying' anyone, sees an opportunity to get more information about her father's fate, and so goes along without much protest. Alice asks Ashes why the Readers don't go themselves to get rid of a rebellious apprentice, and Ashes explains that for the most part the Readers never leave their library-fortresses for fear of one another. Having spent the last several hundred years fighting each other, they are all justly paranoid about either attempted assassination or someone pillaging their precious books while they're gone. Geryon sends her through a portal-book that leads to a secret cave, where a set of heavily guarded portal-books that serve as the "front doors" of the Reader's fortress-libraries are kept. There she meets the other apprentices, who are a mixed bunch of boys and girls close to her age or a bit older. Isaac is among them, but to her surprise he acts cool toward her, which leaves Alice feeling a little hurt. Some of the others are kinder, but the older ones, who have absorbed more of the Reader's ethos, are openly dismissive of their younger companions. Two of these in particular, named Gerard and Ellen, take charge of the expedition and start issuing orders to the younger children. Together they go into the portal-book that leads to Esau's fortress. According to the older Readers, upon Esau's death the web of wards that guard his domain should have fallen apart, leaving it relatively open to invasion. The apprentices find themselves in an interlocking maze of stone blocks, with chambers of books similar to the clusters found at the back of Geryon's library. Unexpectedly, the dragon speaks up in the back of Alice's mind, telling her that they're in an active labyrinth. Alice tells the others, but Ellen and Gerard are dismissive, since Esau's bound creatures should all be gone by now. But no sooner have they gone around the first few corners then they're attacked by huge ant/scorpion creatures. One of the younger apprentices is killed before the rest manage to fend the things off. Alice is deeply shaken by this, bringing home as it does the danger of what they're doing, but some of the other younger children are worse off. She and Isaac work to keep morale up as Ellen and Gerard lead the group deeper into the maze, insisting they know where they're going. Forewarned, they are able to dispatch a few other wandering creatures, and explain that this is to be expected as the uncontrolled books start to leak into their environment. But the maze goes on and on, without end, and Ellen and Gerard eventually fall to bickering. Finally, exhausted and hungry, the apprentices call a rest halt. Alice takes the opportunity to try and get more information out the dragon. It speaks with her, reluctantly, and she asks what it meant by 'labyrinth'. It explains that each Reader has a maze-demon, a race known as the Labyrinthine, to help contain his books and protect his domain. Ending performs this service for Geryon, and one of the creatures is still at work here, in spite of Esau's death. The others begin to debate whether Esau is really dead, and if he isn't, whether they should turn back. Alice asks the dragon why it is talking to her now, when it refused before, but the taciturn beast refuses to say anything further. Stepping away from the others, Alice tries to talk privately with Isaac, but he looks embarrassed and dodges her. Before she can follow, a voice from the shadows stops her. It's Jacob, the apprentice responsible for Esau's death, accompanied by a shadowy creature similar to Ending. He introduces himself to Alice, and when she asks him what he wants he says he only wanted to take a look at her while he has the chance. He seems unhinged, almost insane, and Alice runs to warn the others. Just as she gets there, another pack of monsters descends on them. This one is a shoal of colorful, airborne sea-life, all equipped with spines or jaws. The apprentices fight back, and led by Gerard's considerable power they repel the initial assault. When Gerard pushes through a pack of vicious, one-horned air-dolphins, though, he's surprised by an ancient and battle-scared whale-like creature that pounces and devours him in a single gulp. The apprentices scatter in panic. Alice tries to stay with Isaac, but she can feel the maze twisting away from her, warping space and distance every time she rounds a corner, and when he stumbles and falls behind for an instant he's lost to view. Alice herself emerges onto a grand avenue, running through the middle of the maze like a highway and leading to a distant stepped pyramid. Alice asks the dragon what's going on, and he tells her that Jacob's Labyrinthine controls the maze, and is clearly inviting them to continue. Alice hesitates, wanting to go back and look for the others, but the dragon says she had no chance of finding them if the maze-demon doesn't wish her to. She's almost convinced by this, but at that moment she hears a scream from one of the younger children, and goes charging back into the maze without thinking. At first the dragon's prediction comes true, and Alice runs down corridor after corridor only to find herself back on the avenue, while the screams continue. Finally, in tears from frustration, she closes her eyes and runs straight towards the walls, ready to slam into them headlong. Before she hits anything, something reaches out from her and the labyrinth's walls change, leaving her facing a spidery monster threatening to devour one of the apprentice girls. Alice distracts the thing and rescues the girl, and as she flees the walls of the maze close in behind her and prevent the monster from following. With this newfound power, Alice is able to quickly round up the other apprentices, including Ellen. She finds Isaac corned by more beasts and saves him, though he insists that he had the situation in hand the whole time. Most of the group is terrified and ready to run for the exit, but Alice says she has to stay and see it through, still hoping to find out something about her father. She opens a path for Ellen and the others to get away, but to her surprise Isaac remains behind as well. Together, they return to the avenue and climb the pyramid. Jacob and his shadowy companion, who he introduces as Torment, are waiting for them. Isaac is ready to fight immediately, but Alice tries to talk to Jacob, who seems almost pathetically eager to befriend her. He rants incoherently about how he had to kill Esau, and how Torment made him do it. Alice tries to question him about Ghillie, the fairy who threatened her father, but when she's almost talked Jacob around into coherence Torment casually cuts the boy down from behind.")

  • Else Kuhic

    My mother was 18 when I was born. My dad said she died giving birth to me, and so my father, who was 17 at the time, raised me on his own. He was the youngest of seven children, but all of his siblings were much older, had lives of their own, and lived in different places around the country. My grandparents weren’t exactly the most supportive people (they tried to convince my dad to tell my mom to have an abortion, but he refused), so I didn’t really grow up around them, either. One of uncles lived not too far from us, though, so he was able to help take care of me from time to time. Now I don’t know how he did it, but despite being a single dad at 17, he was able to finish high school on time and go to college. If my uncle wasn’t babysitting me, my dad would just bring me to his classes. My dad was a mechanic, a carpenter, an electrician… he basically did everything. He worked multiple jobs for as long as I could remember. Despite all of that, we were still struggling financially, and while my uncle did try to offer us a place to stay, my dad just really wanted to at least try and make it on his own. He fixed up a truck and from the time I was about five until I was almost seven, that truck was our home. We basically lived on the road for two years, always driving to different places for his job. I wasn’t able to go to school because we were all over the place, but my dad was able to find time to teach me how to read and write, as well as some math (that was his favorite, not so much mine, though!). Since he always took me to work with him, all I did was read and read and read to pass time. Just after I turned seven, my dad was able to get a small, one-bedroom house near my uncle’s place for a great price. He fixed that up by himself (I like to think that I contributed in some way, but thinking back now, I probably broke more than I helped fix lol). The neighborhood was actually pretty good, and I was able to go to school. The following September, I started the 2nd grade, and I LOVED it. My teachers were actually surprised that I was doing so well despite it being my first time in school ever. They didn’t know it was because I had a fantastic teacher at home. :) Over the next few years that followed, things started to get better for us. We lived efficiently with little to no excess, and soon, my dad had saved up quite a bit of money. We were no longer living from paycheck to paycheck, so he started a college fund for me. He wanted to make sure that I wouldn’t struggle, so he prioritized that first. Unsurprisingly, my grandparents started to treat us “nicer”. My aunts and uncles started to visit us more. I was just a kid, but I knew how badly they treated my dad. I knew they were only nice now that he proved to all of them that he wasn’t just a worthless kid. I probably hated them more than he did, but he told me that some people are just like that, and it would be a waste of time trying to make them change. Then, when I was 12, my uncle pulled me out of school to tell me that my dad had been in a car accident on the way to work. It was a hit-and-run, and the person left my dad alone on the side of the road in his totaled truck. He was in a coma for weeks before they finally took him off life support. Just like that, my dad was gone, and in summary, you could say that I was, too. My uncle helped to cover most of the medical bills, then sold our house and put everything under my name. Despite the major setback, I was still financially set for college and probably a good couple of years after that, but my father’s death left me completely devastated. I lost all of my motivation to go school. I really just wasn’t the same anymore. My dad made me who I was, and without him, I couldn’t be myself. I lived with my uncle for the first few months after my dad died, but soon, my grandparents started offering to take care of me. My uncle was a busy guy and was rarely ever home, so it seemed like the best choice to make. I was barely going to school, anyway. I ended up leaving everything behind and moved across the country to live with my grandparents. Like I said before, they were pretty nice to me at first, but things quickly went downhill. My grandfather would tell me that because of my dad’s mistakes, I was now their burden to bear. He was an alcoholic and often physically and verbally abusive, too. For the rest of my teenage years, I lived in that hellhole. I admit that I wasn’t the world’s greatest teenager, and for the first couple of years I was just downright depressed. By the 11th grade, I started to pick everything up again because I realized that I was around the same age that my dad had me. I started to focus more on school, and spent more time there or in any after-school program I could find than at home. I also kept trying to go back to living with my uncle, but my grandparents kept pushing it off and eventually I just stopped asking. Somehow, they managed to get their hands on the money my dad had saved for me, and as you could probably expect, they just blew it all on God knows what. I didn’t even realize that they did that until I was applying for college and realized I didn’t have the money to pay for it. I had no idea what to do from there. If there was a way to get it all back, I didn’t know what it was, nor did I know who to ask. I could’ve gotten a loan but the fact that they threw away everything my dad had worked for was just too much. I absolutely resented my grandparents after that, and I felt like I was on the brink of another downward spiral. So as soon as I graduated from high school, I took everything I could bring with me in a backpack & suitcase, and moved back in with my uncle. He wanted to help me start another college fund, but he was already giving me free food and rent, and I didn’t think it was right that he’d have to put me through college, too. So, after I graduated high school, I took a break from school. I wasn’t nearly as crafty as my dad, so I just worked as a waitress and picked up every other job I could find. I did that for about two years, then saved up enough money so I could go to university to become a nurse. Fast forward to when I was around 27. My life was looking pretty all right. I had a stable job, my own house, had just gotten married, and then… another big bombshell was dropped into my life, again. I found out that my mother was actually still alive. I wasn’t planned, and my mom wasn’t financially nor emotionally ready for a kid, so she planned to put me up for adoption. My dad begged her not to, and said he’d take care of me if she wouldn’t. So, when I was born, she literally just handed me over to him and left. They didn’t make a case out of it or anything. My dad just took full responsibility without any hesitation. My uncle says that my dad made up the whole story of her dying so that I wouldn’t grow up thinking my own mother didn’t want me, and possibly also to not go looking for her. Nonetheless, she managed to find one of my aunts on Facebook and creeped her way to find me. My guess is that she saw some of our wedding photos or something. I was pretty upset with my uncle about the whole thing at first since he knew all along and never bothered to tell me (at least when I became an adult), but then I realized that had I been in my mom’s position when I was 18, I probably would’ve doubted my ability to properly raise a child, too. I thought that maybe hings wouldn’t have been the same for me if I grew up knowing the truth. Also, it’s not like I missed out on much, anyway. My dad and I were fine without her. We had the whole world at our feet with just the two of us. My mother and I never ended up meeting in person, and to this day, we still aren’t very close. She has a family of her own, and she’s always asking if we could meet one day, but I just don’t feel like I’m ever going to be ready, even after so many years. My kids do, however, know she’s their grandmother and they send each other gifts/cards on Christmas. Fast-forward to now, I’m 34 and happily married with three kids under 6 and a fourth on the way. My husband’s a pharmacist and I’m the head nurse of the hospital where my dad passed away. We’re well off and living a life I never really imagined would be possible for me. I just wish that my dad was here to see it. None of it would’ve been possible without him. I’m still close with my uncle and catch up with him regularly, but I’ve distanced myself with my grandparents and don’t really see my other relatives except on certain occasions (e.g. weddings, etc.). My husband and in-laws are amazing, though, and I’m thankful for them everyday. :) P.S. Sorry for the long post, but thank you to anyone who took the time to read through it all. I've read a lot of books in my life but my dad's story is my favorite one to tell. :)

  • Toney Wunsch

    My friends would visit at home, and I would have to inform her 1-2 days before they come(not really a problem), and exactly what time they would be leaving if they were spending the night. However, her friends could just come home whenever (again not a problem to me), same rules applied to my family, but it wasn't something I enforced for her family or she enforced. After we got married and before pregnancy, intimacy was significantly reduced, compared to before marriage. It was a very frustrating situation, and I tried to find out if there was a medical problem, or what we could both work with that would mutually satisfy us. We came to an agreement, i'd meet her needs to the best of my ability and she'd meet mine to the best of her ability. I'd buy lingerie that she liked or that I thought would look nice on her, and she'd do things that incorporated role playing. Well, to my surprise, she said why do i only buy her lingerie (even though I also buy shoes, purses, spa services for her, gift cards to some of her favorite stores, etc). She said I should be buying her jewelry too. So we go to a jewelry store, and one that she really liked was $40k, and a few others in the $10-17k range, and some on the $3-5k range. I thought to myself, why is jewelry so important all of a sudden, considering I never bought her jewelry in the time we dated, nor did we frequent jewelry stores. A watch or two here or there, yea. So she would get mad at the fact that I didn't get jewelry, and tell me don't forget you live in my house (she did buy the house). That was the thing she would use which I felt was very disrespectful. SO after enough times hearing that, I packed my things and left. Before I left the house, one of the things we talked about was names of our kids. And considering I come from a very small family, I suggested if we can keep some names from my family alive through these two children we would be having. At least one of them could carry my paternal grandfather and grandmothers name given how much she meant to me, and the fact that I never saw my grandfather. I left, and then had the affair. It was more of an emotional affair as I could not bring myself to have sex with this woman. As soon as I learnt my wife was on bedrest, I immediately broke things off and told her that I could not continue. This is my responsibility, and I blame nobody for why I chose to address whatever issues I had by betraying her trust. And we've attended counseling, and I have made this very clear to her as well. That's all I can do on my end. It isn't as though I was expecting that all will be dropped. So she finds out and immediately tells her mom to change the locks on the door, and proceeds to punch and slap and bar me from the hospital, and threatened to have me arrested if I showed up. So I didn't show up for fear of being arrested. I did send flowers twice/day, taking full responsiblity for my actions. Then when she was on the verge of giving birth, she called to let me know they were going to do a C section. I came as soon as I could. And while she was there, she said she was very disappointed that I never once came to the hospital since the day she found out. I said you were very upset, and did tell me that I would be arrested if I showed up. I was just respecting your wishes. I sent flowers, as that was the best way I could still let you know I was thinking about you and I was sorry for what I did. We talked about names in the hospital twice, and then low and behold, I find out a week later that she had given names, even though we were still talking as though they had not yet been given their names. She then went on to say I'm the woman, and there's nothing you can do about it. At this point, I feel again that she was still hurt, but this is a life long decision she made to tell me she is hurt. At the same time she told me, she will name any future children we have, because of course she is the woman and can give the name without the husband being there. You will not have any say about how these kids are raised. And I said, I have failed you as a husband, but let us raise our kids together. You can't prevent me from having a relationship with my kids. Given our kids were in hospital for a while, we had to grant permission to let people visit. When my family would visit and I did not tell her before hand, she would be so upset that she doesn't just want "people" coming by visiting her kids without her knowledge. Again I didn't do the same for her family. Infact I gave her mother full rights to change them and hold them, etc. I would take my kids out, and if I did not get her on the phone before taking them out, I had to hear it from her as to why I didn't "clear" it with her before taking them out. There was even a time when I was bringing a family member to see the kids, and she knew I was going to do that. She got home so I could go pick up the family member (I was babysitting them that day and she had their booster seats in her car). I drove an hour away, and then drove back home and she wasn't home. I called her, and she didn't answer. Text messages, nothing. We waited there about 45 minutes, and she didn't answer her phone or text messages the entire time. The next day she comes back home as though nothing happened. I asked where she was, and she didn't answer. So I have looked at all that's transpired. I think I didn't spend more time with her, like go to the movies, or walks in the park, quality time. I was so consumed with paying off our debt, getting us a chance to retire at by 50 (15 years from now), saving for our kids and retirement that maybe she felt lonely. But what baffles me is, she gets mad about the fact that I went to my friend's graduation, but when I bring up Italy, she says it was my fault I went because I was working too much. When I say look at how much debt we paid off in that time, and how much we saved for our kids so I could stay home and help you. Well, if you hadn't been working that much I would not have gone to Italy. You betrayed my trust by cheating on me. I acknowledge that and have repeatedly done so. I have not betrayed your trust. I bring up taking money and still till this day not letting me know what she used the money for. Well that's different. Besides what does it matter if I can't take money out of the account. I remind her that it applies to us both. I can't withdraw any money from the account unless you are present. Well yes you can do that because you make more money and I am even paying for your health insurance. I am an independent contractor so my salary fluctuates. I remind her that my money goes towards both our debt, both of our retirement accounts, both of our life insurance policies, and contributes to the day to day running of our house. She says well, we need to save my money and use yours. Then there are questions as to why I have to do things for my parents. She bought her dad a flight ticket, but when I bought my parents one, and I told her about it, she said why can you do that for your parents but you couldn't give me money when I went to Italy. Work slowed down for me, and now she says I am responsible for paying her mortgage, despite me giving her $1200/mth for childcare, and I bring diapers, food, books, clothes, myself when I get the chance to visit, and this is money I don't even count towards the $1200. And still that's not enough considering she has a car payment, mortgage, children, and her own bills. I remind her of the fact that I have my own bills to pay. Even counseling that we currently go to, I was on her insurance, but she told me she took me off because it was too expensive (that's understandable), but I pay 85% of the cost, and she 15%. That was the only agreement that was going to work for her for us to do counseling. I've suggested, let me even get a chance to date you all over again. And we go back and back, and what more can I do? People who've looked at this from the outside most have suggested a divorce. She's talked to people about my wrongs, and of course, I have to defend myself against what I know isn't true. When they do ask her now tell me what you've done wrong and how you can make it better? I can give off exactly what I've done wrong, and what I can do to make it better. She doesn't answer this question. Instead it goes back to what I did, and the things she says I have done which are not true. And then calls me a deadbeat dad because I should be giving more money. I've asked how much she spends for insurance so I can contribute. I went to get records from their hospital and I was told I am not on there as a parent. She is the only one, and only she can request those documents. They've been sick, and I only find out when she lets me visit. So yes, I can understand that this would be a natural reaction given the egregious betrayal here. And I have acknowledged at times that everything is my fault. Everything that has gone wrong is my fault. Will you give me a chance to win you back. She says yes, and then we go back to well why did you cheat on me? It gets very tiring. Nonetheless, I appreciate your words on this. Thank you sincerely.

  • Caesar Heller

    I'm going on a study visit next week, so I'll ask the managers on their thoughts when I get back. As for my impressions on the benefits: 1. Returns are a faster process. For example, yesterday I was helping a patron who had an item that was 'assumed lost' and thus her account was frozen as the charges for replacing the book put her over the allowable balance to use the account. Normally the book would be checked in and the charges cleared...but on this occasion the conveyer belt had stopped. I had to go through the returns and dig out the book to clear her account. On most occasions this will happen automatically and we don't have to dig through a mountain of books to find one that people say is returned but still shows on the system as checked out to their account. With or without charges this has improved greatly as the returns are being checked in 24/7 and will be processed before the customer hits the checkout with their next selections if no one is manning the returns area. 2. We have 3 people scheduled at all times on the front desk/returns area, except when breaks are needed. Most breaks happen outside of scheduled desk duty. This automated system has freed us up to give more assistance with patrons. We are generally more caught up on shelving and there's been an increased need to spend time with patrons needing help on printing, scanning and general computer usage problems which has timed nicely with the introduction of RFID. Previously we'd need to spend more time doing check-ins and check out for customers. We haven't seen a reduction in staffing or hours used, just an ability to spend a few more of those hours with patrons rather than scanning books. 3. Inventory. Since we put in the RFID system we haven't done a full library inventory, just some testing of the system. This might be the biggest benefit as an inventory will be more accurate and take much less time. Additionally, if a patron walks out of the library with something we know exactly what it is. 4. Kids enjoy scanning the books once they learn how to use the self checkouts. 5. We get about 15-20 totes of product from other libraries every weekday. The automated check in system allows us to putt his high volume of product through a little faster than previously. The only times it causes a problem is on days that the returns area is already swamped like the day after we are closed. Biggest problems: 1. The automated system isn't as gentle as humans when doing check-ins. We have had some books/magazines damaged from the system. 2. It can cause a frustration for patrons that visit multiple libraries if any of those libraries haven't implemented the self checkout system. For us, this has only been evident with one customer. She will visit a library that hasn't yet started using a self checkout system, though they have put RFID tags on their product. When she visits us after the other library and tries to exit our library she will set off out exit alarm. We then check what items set off the alarm and check her account to make sure they are checked out on her account. This is a very minor issue though. 3. I don't know that we have any hard data on this one but anicdotally a few of my colleagues have expressed an increased incident of items where customers have been located on the shelf that the system didn't check in. These arise from customers alerting us to this on items they say they returned but the system still shows on their account. We are lucky at our library that our customers don't get upset when this happens and we obviously will clear any fees that may have resulted. 4. It's a big project to put RFID tags on everything. It'll probably be a project done by many different people, so getting everyone to do the job well can be a challenge. We started with one system and then ended up with another by the time we were done. The famine difference with the two systems involved DVDs, CDs and grouped items. Originally we only tagged each item in a set if it had 1 supplemental item or 1 disc. The second system had us tag all items if there are 2 additional items. So a DVD set with 2discs has a total of 3 RFID tags. You must be very careful when putting tags on discs to make sure they are centered and pressed down securely. We haven't had any complaints of tags coming off while the cd or did is inside a player, but if they are a little loose kids will probably pick at them. This wasn't a big issue but did take extra time as we over the CDs and DVDs extra times recoding items that changed requirements as we changed systems. Keeping track of which items are done and which are still to be done is a challenge. The hardest area is the children's area due to its high usage and how man items are thin. We used a sharpie and put a dot on the spine or back of items as they were done. This allowed us to easily walk down an aisle and see what still needed to be tagged. Luckily for most of the project, we had 3 mobile stations so we were able to tag product on the floor rather than pulling items off the shelf and carting them to the back room and then taking them back out to reshelve them. Once we got close to finishing a section we would have that listed in the returns room and as check ins were done, items that didn't have RFID tags went on a separate cart. Every morning I would tag that cart or two and shelve those items before I went on to putting RFID tags on other items. 5. The system does seem to get overwhelmed at times when it's very busy, both on check-in and checkouts. Customers aren't as fast at self checkout as we are so there are times people are waiting to checkout that previously we'd help faster. But conversely there are less lines more times as we have 3 self checkouts and 1 staff member can help those 3 stations with minimal supervision and previously 3 customers would be considered a line if only one staff member was at the counter and would have to page someone to help. Also, a few questions by a customer could slow down the check out process quite a bit, but now I can help someone with questions while 3 customers are doing their checkouts at the same time. So, you can't have it both ways and you get lines either way but the RFID system has less lines. The biggest difference is that previously we had stansions set up for an orderly lineup but now we don't so lines now can be a big more frustrating as people aren't in 1 orderly line but the lines happen less often...I hope that all makes sense. 6. People can enter their card number manually if they don't have their card with them. If they mis-enter the number they could end up checking out items on someone else's account. Because of this we are in the process of updating the system to require a pin when checking out. Most of our customers already have a pin as that's required to access their account from home and wifi when in the library. But there will be quite a few that have no pin or forgotten their pin when we switch this feature on. 7. If items are too close to the scan pads, they can mistakenly be checked out to patrons without them realizing it. This happened a few times where a customer did their checkout then came up to the counter to ask one of us a question. While we were talking another customer would be using the self-checkout station and customer 1s items would be read by the RFID reader under customer 2s account. So you must be very careful of where you place things. I was a volunteer during the time we were tagging the product in preparation of the self-check out system and I did about 1/3 of the library and double & triple checked the entire library. After this project I was hired as a casual and have since started a masters in information studies program. Tips: 1. Do the kids section first. We did it last and by then everyone was losing a bit of steam on doing the project. It's the hardest section to double-check. 2. Mobile stations are a must, even if you have to make your own. I talked with our I.T. manager about this and we toyed with the idea of making ur own up but we do very little tagging now. We did have 3 for the majority of the project but did do a few sections where we loaded up a shelf or two at a time and carted them to a PC in our back room. 3. Take time to fully train people doing the project. The main mistakes we had to fix were avoidable and mostly came from a lack of training. 4. Watch the screen as you are tagging, don't rush. There were times where people rushed and may have scanned one item that imprinted the information of another item on the wrong tag. let me know if you have any specific questions and I will talk with management next week for you.

  • June Hane

    > That was because he was acting under the assumption that things would be put right if he took the throne, and frankly he wasn't that wrong compared to the other candidates. Joffrey was already a disaster from day one and Renly was going to create a precedent that would upend practically every succession across Westeros and set the stage for a long era of mini-wars. Joffrey was a disaster, but he was also a child. It's quite possible that a more firm hand from Tywin could have shaped him into a decent king, and have done so without the enormous cost in bloodshed that Stannis' assault on King's Landing resulted in. As for Renly, any precedent he sets could be no more damaging than the one Robert had already established. He could have forced a back-dated abdication from Stannis before ascending the Iron Throne, then held a show trial to formally disinherit Cersei's bastard children. There are lots of ways to legally justify something on paper. Stannis cloaks everything he does with a veneer of legalistic or moralistic justification, but at the end of the day his real motivation is getting what he thinks he is owed. Stannis may claim that he will right things when he ascends the Iron Throne, but he's been an underdog in that fight since the very beginning and there is very little evidence to back up his assertions. > Based on the legal system that exists and exists to create a clear line of succession to avoid wars and constant instability, he is the king. And those laws exist for the common good by not just throwing the job to a guy that you may like, but keeping the peace by insisting that it has to be this specific guy. > And Stannis doesn't think he's going to survive this war. It isn't ambition if you think that you're not going to really rise to the top but rather have to sacrifice everything. By that system, Joffrey was the rightful King as Robert had recognized him as his firstborn son and heir. That doesn't disappear just because Stannis asserts (without providing evidence) that Robert is not Joffrey's biological father. Moreover, just because one has the legal right doesn't mean one has the moral right. What good has come from Stannis' quest for the Iron Throne, beyond helping the NW defeat the Wildlings? Thus far his claim has caused nothing but needless bloodshed. > And what heinous crimes? He hasn't committed any that I know of, unless you're referring to a possible burning of Shireen (which will almost certainly be under very different conditions and the real threat of the destruction of all life on the planet). Kinslaying, burning people alive, attempting to burn a child alive (which he will likely try again and succeed doing with Shireen), adultery. Not on the scale of other characters in the series, sure, but Stannis is a poster child for "the ends justify the means." > The Tyrells will almost certainly clash in battle with Aegon long before that's a possibility and Tommen was already being guarded before Pycelle and Kevan's assassination. After, I highly doubt even a seemingly innocent septa would be able to get close enough to kill him before the Tyrells are firmly enemies of his. Plus, why would any Sand want an Aegon-Tyrell marriage? They might hate the Lannisters, but that doesn't mean any liking for the Tyrells, their very long-time enemies. A plot to break Tyrell power and possibly remove a united Reach would be much more appealing to them than Aegon marrying a Tyrell and continuing the past decade-plus' reversal of Martel fortunes. Doran sent Nymeria Sand to take Oberyn's place on the Small Council, even after she explicitly stated her desire to kill Tommen and Myrcella as retribution for the murder of Elia Martell's children. She may not be *purposely* trying to facilitate an Aegon-Tyrell alliance, but she may do so inadvertently through her desire for vengeance. Either way, we know that Tommen and Myrcella will die before Cersei, and given that both are dead already in the show it's really not a stretch to imagine them both dead before the end of TWOW. However that happens it will sever the Tyrell claim to the Iron Throne, necessitating a new coalition forming behind a different claimant. > She explicitly rejected their ideology and reaffirmed her identity as a Stark. She did outwardly, but people were quick to point out how un-Arya-like she was acting when she took up her old identity. She walks and swaggers like a noble (something Varys called out specifically earlier in the season), she throws money around, she demands a private cabin. None of those are things that the Arya of AGOT would have done, but they *are* things that a noble girl who just-so-happens to be named "Arya of House Stark" might do. Again, people are quick to chalk all of those inconsistencies up to directorial incompetence, but they all seem like very deliberate choices by the director and script-writers so we should not be so quick to dismiss their relevance. When Jaqen H'ghar tells Arya that she has "truly become no-one," we shouldn't discount that just because it doesn't make sense within our understanding of the FM. Instead we should take it as a sign that our current understanding of the FM is *wrong*. So yes...Arya reaffirmed her identity as Arya of House Stark. But does she actually remember what that really means? The show makes it seem very much like she doesn't...she remembers the connections that Arya of House Stark had, but at this point that identity may very well just be another mask that she can put on and take off at will - albeit a well-worn and comfortable one. > And Baelish left him with another lord. Which means that Baelish doesn't have power to press the lords to do anything. I note that Baelish deliberately didn't do anything like that in the books, for all that he said he'd send the boy to be a lord's ward, he keeps him close and in the Eyrie for as long as possible. Yes, but in the books it's not getting in the way of things he needs to do or places he needs to be. The showrunners changed things up for narrative expediency, but the ultimate effect (Baelish's control over Sweetrobin) is largely the same. > And it's far more than not perfect, it's throwing out everything about Baelish's motivations. He was obsessed with Catelyn. He transferred that to Sansa, so much so that he idiotically kisses her in the open, which leads to a disaster where he's forced to kill Lysa because she's saying too much. They decided they really had to reach this story marker of having some girl in a horrible marriage to Ramsay, and so had Baelish just toss Sansa to Ramsay in complete contradiction of who Baelish is and how he operates. Let's not forget that in the books LF turns Sansa's best friend into a prostitute, then sells her to the Boltons to ingratiate himself with them and the Lannisters. LF doesn't care about Sansa as a *person*, he cares about her more as an ornament or symbol of his own success. Also in the books, after that one kiss, I do not recall him making any further sexual advances towards her. LF cares primarily for LF, and how he can turn any given situation towards advancing his own interests. I'll also point out that in both the books and the show he sincerely believed he could win Cat's affection by challenging Brandon to a duel, "saving" her from a loveless marriage. So yes...he sold Sansa to the monstrous Boltons, but this kicked off a chain of events resulting in Littlefinger riding to Sansa's rescue with the Vale forces at his back. I honestly think his miscalculation wasn't selling Sansa to a horrible marriage, but overestimating how grateful she would be to him when he saved her from it. Note that prior to the marriage Sansa had a *claim* on Winterfell, but was still in the eyes of the realm legally married to Tyrion Lannister (whom the North had plenty of reason to despise). After the marriage to Ramsay her marriage to Tyrion is a non-isue, and her claim to Winterfell has been elevated to the rightful ruler both by marriage and by inheritence. Making the North and the Vale go to war to press Sansa's claim is a hard sell, but riding to *save* Sansa from the evil Ramsay was much easier.

  • Holden Schiller

    Okay, I'm going to apologize in advance for my lengthy post, but these questions are tough for me to answer as "one-liners." So here we go...*you have been warned :P* **Would you prefer if there was only one bite or if there were multiple bites? Does it matter to you in the end, outside of being right or wrong?** - For tightness of the story, I have a preference for FNAF 4's Fredbear incident to be the "Bite of '87," and for it to be the only "bite" in the story. For this to be Afton's own son is so tear-jerking and tragic, especially when this innocent little boy did absolutely nothing to deserve it. *Fun fact: Crying Child is my favorite character in the series outside of Freddy Fazbear & Fredbear, because I found his character to be so relatable. I was so scared of inanimate objects that moved on their own as a kid and hated locked doors, dark closets, and even elevators because of an exaggerated fear of being locked in with no way out.* In short, the FNAF 4 story is most powerful as "The Bite of '87," because it is the worst nightmare that could really happen to a child. (That's not even including having a murderer for a father, yeesh!) Even if it weren't the '87 Bite in the end, I would still say that this theory is the tightest and makes for an excellent pinnacle as the "4th Chapter" in the story of FNAF. Also, can I just say that the Golden Freddy jumpscare in FNAF 1 after entering 1-9-8-7 seems to back up this theory. I think it would be *awesome* if this was Scott's way of hinting that it was the Yellow Bear the whole time that did the "Bite." **Would you prefer if the nightmare animatronics were real or not real?** I have a preference for them to be exaggerated in the child's mind. That being said, I do think they're real--obviously they're his plush toys "coming to life", but my impression is that they could also be like Teddy Ruxpin characters, plushies, but with a talking or remote-control ability. This could be yet another explanation for why the Fredbear plush is "possessed," like in the mind of an over-imaginative child. To add to this idea, I also think the little girl holding the Spring Bonnie plush when she says "Daddy says I have to be careful or I will pinch my finger. He's a finger trap, he says" could hint at this idea, of it not being an ordinary plush, but a talking one, where the mouth would move up and down, hence "pinching her finger." **Do you think it would work better if all the animatronics were possessed, or only some of them? The toys? The funtimes?** Hmmm, my understanding of FNAF 1 - 3 is that 11 children die in total...(1 Puppet child in "Take Cake", 5 Missing Children in "Go, Go, Go", and the 5 children in "S-A-V-E-T-H-E-M.") Based on that knowledge, I believe that the FNAF 1 & FNAF 2 characters are all possessed as that makes for a total of 11, (assuming the Withereds are the Classics). The Funtimes I believe are highly advanced / possessed, however the only animatronic's child that's really pertinent to the story is Circus Baby's, since it was the Sister she swallowed. That's not to say that the others aren't possessed. I think they could be, especially since Funtime Freddy has a child's body inside his storage tank. **Who makes a better Springtrap?** In terms of villainy, definitely William. Hands down. Funny story, in the first few days I was exposed to FNAF it was *definitely* Springtrap that scared me the most, out of any of the characters. Part of the reason was not only because of his creepy concept of a corpse inside of him, but also because I legitimately thought he was the bad guy (or *a* bad guy). It made him so intimidating. But now I see him differently. In some ways I think that this is unfortunate, because Springtrap was such an epic villain, but the potential for him to be Michael is what keeps FNAF's original storyline still intriguing and relevant. How Scott is able to tie his story back to elements of FNAF 1 & 3 is genius. In the end, the killer (William) as Springtrap had a lot more punch, but then again, if that wasn't Scott's original story, I'm not complaining... **Would you prefer if the child experimentation theory turned out to be true or untrue?** I like the Funtimes as experiments, and cutesy-on-the-outside-horrific-atrocities-on-inside designs. But that's about it. I don't like ideas of the Nightmares being experiments very much, because it takes away from them being Nightmares, as in things we see in our sleep. That being said, I don't put anything past Mr. William Afton, the crooked man that he is. I'm curious to see the reason Scott put Nightmare on the front cover of *The Twisted Ones.* **Would you like it if Mr Afton turned out to be working alone, or if he had accomplices?** Often criminals don't work alone, and I think it would give the plotline *so much depth* if Afton and his son Michael worked together at some point. My headcanon currently is that Michael slowly learns of his father's evil ways, is enraged by them, and then tries to undo them. Since I also lean towards him being the Foxy Brother, that would make him a person drawn to do good things after what he did to his little brother. He begins to feel disgust for anything that is unjust in nature and eventually when he realizes his father's full potential, he winds up trying to stop William once and for all. (HandUnit: "Self-reflection on past mistakes." Michael: "I'm going to come find you.") **What do you think of William Afton having a family? Does it add to his character? Is it weird?** I think this makes FNAF's plot overall stronger. Before it was revealed that Afton had a family, I felt that we didn't get a really good glimpse into *who* the purple guy was, other than just being an 8-bit figure who murdered some children. That Scott's given the murderer a name and a family gives this character so much more depth...I've come to appreciate the story of FNAF in such a different way now. **Who would you prefer the bite victim to possess, if anyone?** - Probably Shadow Freddy. ("I will eat your soul.") I think that this line could be a reference to Fredbear "eating" the child. My thinking here is that Shadow Freddy being the exact opposite color of Fredbear (deep purple as opposed to bright gold) is symbolic of the child's entering the "Nightmare." In the same way, the character Nightmare is the counterpart of the Nightmare Fredbear character. **Would you like Michael to be the Foxy brother? The bite victim? Someone else?** - Michael as the Foxy Brother definitely! I would be fairly upset if this wasn't the case, mainly because it wouldn't give the bully brother a "second chance" to make things right again, with either his little brother or his sister. The "Angsty Teen" hint, as well as "Self-reflection on past mistakes" quote I mentioned before makes me think there's something to the Foxy Brother = Michael theory. And again, I'll go back to the idea of story tightness. At some point, Scott is going to tie things back around, and so far, with that final "Father, It's Me" cutscene, he has. We're seeing Springtrap again. Now, if Scott were to introduce Michael as a 4th and oldest brother, it'd be yet another character in this huge and already confusing world of FNAF characters. Now as for Michael being the Crying Child, I don't think so. He clearly died at the end of FNAF 4, and I believe that Nightmare / Shadow Freddy represents his death. **Would you like Henry to play a role in the backstory of the games, or just stick to the story continuity?** I think it'd be cool, but I'm going to have to say that since the game's lore is so congested, I'd have to go with leaving Henry in the books. There's so much storyline there with he and his daughter Charlie that I think doesn't necessarily need to be brought into the games. However, it is my belief that William Afton did not make the original characters of Freddy, Bonnie, Chica, Foxy, Fredbear & Spring Bonnie, but that these were Henry's creations, both in the games and the book series. Should Funtime Foxy be a yes or a no in your opinion? Funtime Foxy / Mangle is an *animatronic*...period :P

  • Genesis Waters

    >Joffrey was a disaster, but he was also a child. It's quite possible that a more firm hand from Tywin could have shaped him into a decent king, and have done so without the enormous cost in bloodshed that Stannis' assault on King's Landing resulted in. >As for Renly, any precedent he sets could be no more damaging than the one Robert had already established. He could have forced a back-dated abdication from Stannis before ascending the Iron Throne, then held a show trial to formally disinherit Cersei's bastard children. There are lots of ways to legally justify something on paper. >Stannis cloaks everything he does with a veneer of legalistic or moralistic justification, but at the end of the day his real motivation is getting what he thinks he is owed. Stannis may claim that he will right things when he ascends the Iron Throne, but he's been an underdog in that fight since the very beginning and there is very little evidence to back up his assertions. And yet Tywin never really did anything to keep Joffrey from being his useless self. And what damaging precedent that Robert had established? Aerys II had shown that he was a brutal tyrant who would murder his loyal subjects, Rhaegar had apparently kidnapped a Stark engaged to Robert and Rhaegar then *fought for Aerys*. He *didn't* go over to the rebels at any point, he was politically saying that what his father did was fine. The political argument made by Jon Arryn about Robert was that the Targaryen family's tyranny had made it illegitimate and that the proper ruler should be Robert, who was close in bloodline to them and *hadn't* done any of these things to people that the Targaryens had. And so being an underdog means that he doesn't intend to try govern? >By that system, Joffrey was the rightful King as Robert had recognized him as his firstborn son and heir. That doesn't disappear just because Stannis asserts (without providing evidence) that Robert is not Joffrey's biological father. No, Robert's recognition is pointless. Joffrey isn't, and you're arguing apparently that because Stannis doesn't have evidence he should just give up on resisting a regime that's murdered before and after taking power and is definitely illegal. >Moreover, just because one has the legal right doesn't mean one has the moral right. What good has come from Stannis' quest for the Iron Throne, beyond helping the NW defeat the Wildlings? Thus far his claim has caused nothing but needless bloodshed. Keeping in place a system that's supposed to stop constant warring over power by people who are going to argue that they should rule based on nothing than they think they're great? And I would love to hear how exactly Joffrey was going to rule. The boy that Tywin wasn't keeping under control, the boy that Cersei had proven she couldn't control, the boy who hated Tyrion and was definitely going to at best kick him out as soon as he could. The boy who would just order a man executed after he'd already agreed *not to*. >Kinslaying, burning people alive, attempting to burn a child alive (which he will likely try again and succeed doing with Shireen), adultery. Not on the scale of other characters in the series, sure, but Stannis is a poster child for "the ends justify the means." No one accuses the Brackens and Blackwoods of kinslaying and he makes it clear he doesn't even believe that he was responsible for Renly's death, he never attempted to burn a child alive (consideration does not equal actually making an effort to do so), I believe every person he *has* burned was guilty of something and as I pointed out Shireen will probably fall under the category of "all life on this world will end if I don't" which doesn't change the horror but definitely does change the context. >Doran sent Nymeria Sand to take Oberyn's place on the Small Council, even after she explicitly stated her desire to kill Tommen and Myrcella as retribution for the murder of Elia Martell's children. She may not be purposely trying to facilitate an Aegon-Tyrell alliance, but she may do so inadvertently through her desire for vengeance. >Either way, we know that Tommen and Myrcella will die before Cersei, and given that both are dead already in the show it's really not a stretch to imagine them both dead before the end of TWOW. However that happens it will sever the Tyrell claim to the Iron Throne, necessitating a new coalition forming behind a different claimant. So the Sands will all forget their own political knowledge to make this happen. And it will happen before Aegon seals a deal to marry Arianne and get Dornish support. >She did outwardly, but people were quick to point out how un-Arya-like she was acting when she took up her old identity. She walks and swaggers like a noble (something Varys called out specifically earlier in the season), she throws money around, she demands a private cabin. None of those are things that the Arya of AGOT would have done, but they are things that a noble girl who just-so-happens to be named "Arya of House Stark" might do. But she insists that she isn't "no one" which a FM is supposed to do. >Yes, but in the books it's not getting in the way of things he needs to do or places he needs to be. The showrunners changed things up for narrative expediency, but the ultimate effect (Baelish's control over Sweetrobin) is largely the same. What he needs is to stay in the Vale and secure his power there. He isn't doing that because he's constantly leaving to go all over Westeros, and you can't claim you control Robin if you've just left him under the control of one of the major lords who isn't a die-hard supporter of yours. >Let's not forget that in the books LF turns Sansa's best friend into a prostitute, then sells her to the Boltons to ingratiate himself with them and the Lannisters. LF doesn't care about Sansa as a person, he cares about her more as an ornament or symbol of his own success. Also in the books, after that one kiss, I do not recall him making any further sexual advances towards her. LF cares primarily for LF, and how he can turn any given situation towards advancing his own interests. He sent Sansa's *friend*, not Sansa. That he doesn't care about Sansa as a person doesn't change that he's obsessed with her. And he was clearly not happy that she was just being a dutiful daughter in things like how she kissed him after that. >I'll also point out that in both the books and the show he sincerely believed he could win Cat's affection by challenging Brandon to a duel, "saving" her from a loveless marriage. So yes...he sold Sansa to the monstrous Boltons, but this kicked off a chain of events resulting in Littlefinger riding to Sansa's rescue with the Vale forces at his back. I honestly think his miscalculation wasn't selling Sansa to a horrible marriage, but overestimating how grateful she would be to him when he saved her from it. Note that prior to the marriage Sansa had a claim on Winterfell, but was still in the eyes of the realm legally married to Tyrion Lannister (whom the North had plenty of reason to despise). After the marriage to Ramsay her marriage to Tyrion is a non-isue, and her claim to Winterfell has been elevated to the rightful ruler both by marriage and by inheritence. Making the North and the Vale go to war to press Sansa's claim is a hard sell, but riding to save Sansa from the evil Ramsay was much easier. Except that he would give control of Sansa to someone else with nothing to ever guarantee he could get her back. And Tyrion wasn't there, and making them ride to press her claim along with an alleged marriage to Robin would do plenty to get the Vale to ride. And if you're bringing up the books for this, I'll point out he isn't giving her to the Boltons in the books. The person he's getting her engaged to is in the Vale and he probably plans to murder him as soon as Sansa could plausibly be pregnant with Harry's child.

  • Edgar Rath

    I'll include a chapter. Also, as I mentioned, I'll send the book for free to those who cannot afford it. It's really not about the money at his point. Here's the chapter (hope you enjoy it): The Difference Between The Gentleman and The Nice Guy Before we continue any further, it is of essence that we define a few terms and ideas. I am not a fan of the terms ‘Alpha’ and ‘Beta’ since these terms are over- and misused, especially in “pickup” books, so I have chosen do characterize the two inherently different types of men by a set of standards and beliefs characterizing The Gentleman and the set of ideas and beliefs making up the Nice Guy. These are two fundamentally different types of men; some of the characteristics of The Gentleman are self-confidence, self-worth, high self-esteem, humility, honesty, graciousness, compassion, integrity and composure, to name a few. The Gentleman is not fazed by other’s opinions of him. He follows his own path in life, upholding personal set of values and beliefs that he never compromises under any circumstances, unless the compromise contributes to The Gentleman’s self-development, as in a case of changing an opinion or belief when being presented with a more rational and complete thought. The Gentleman is self-aware and mature enough to admit when he is wrong, and while he is a self-confident being, he never lets his confidence metamorphose into arrogance. When challenged, The Gentleman never loses his composure, but instead listens and evaluates the arguments and notions being presented in an objective manner and only after letting these thoughts manifest in his mind, forms his own interpretation and responds accordingly. The Gentleman is self-assured enough to be able to change his idea or belief of something if the arguments presented seem of a more logical and sound nature that those that he has held as axioms for a long time. This is the only way to enlightenment. There is no place for bigotry and narrow-mindedness in the life of The Gentleman. The open-mindedness with which The Gentleman operates allows him to be highly self-aware. Apart from his reasoning skills, The Gentleman is a man of high values and standards who always strives for excellence in any endeavor. He doesn’t settle for anything less than what he truly desires, no matter how challenging the ambition. The Gentleman is also well behaved and well mannered. He is articulate and of good taste. The Gentleman understands that the greatest gift that he can give to himself and those around him is self-development, and so he spends a great deal of his time engaging in activities of intellectual and spiritual stimulus. The Gentleman respects the elderly and engages in behavior of traditional values, like holding up the door for a woman, or giving up his seat for someone in need. The Gentleman never let’s anyone take advantage of his kindness, nor does he let his feelings get the better of him, and he never takes any decision based on feelings, but always reason, despite any problematic consequences of the decision. Though The Gentleman is firmly in touch with his own emotions, he never displays his feelings openly in form of anger or tears. If he really needs to cry, he does so in private. The Gentleman’s feeling of self-assurance arises from his appreciation of his own abilities and qualities. The Gentleman values his family and close friends above anything else. When it is time for him to form his own family, his entire life and focus is directed towards the well being of his wife and offspring. He realizes that a healthy relationship is based upon loyalty and trust and that there is no room for egotism in building strong bonds. The Gentleman protects his honor, as well as that of his woman, at all times. If he chooses to form a family, he understands that it is his duty to support his wife and children to the best of his abilities. The Gentleman always draws clear lines in any relationships from the beginning, to avoid any mishaps and misunderstandings. He treats women with care and respect, but never seeks to please them or conform to their inclinations. While he has a dominant demeanor, he does not feel the need to dominate everything and everyone around him. The Gentleman also realizes that if a fight is inevitable, he must hit first. These are some of the characteristics of The Gentleman and more will be presented throughout this book. To personify The Gentleman: His name is Eric and he is generally considered a ‘good guy’; at least, by those close to him. Eric has very little emotional investment in people that are not close to him and he doesn’t care the slightest of what other’s think of him (or rather, he does not let the opinions of other’s get in the way of his goals). Eric has a well-defined set of standards and morals, which he doesn’t compromise for anyone, especially women. Eric is self-confident and remains himself under pressure, even amongst people with completely conflicting ideologies and beliefs to his own. Women seem to be ‘naturally’ drawn to Eric. He is never mean or abusive to women, but he never invests much time and emotional effort in them until he finds someone worthy of his time. Eric sees no point in trying to please people and so if he meets a girl that wants him to behave in a certain way that is in disagreement with who he is as a man, he moves on. When a relationship breaks up, Eric doesn’t get down or depressed but moves on rather rapidly, realizing that every relationship is a sum of trial and errors in the search for compatibility and chemistry. The Nice Guy is nothing like The Gentleman- he is often insecure, not the least self-aware or self-confident, and generally a conformist who is in a constant search for validation; someone that will rather please other people than ‘hurt’ their feelings. The Nice Guy is not very composed in his demeanor or relationships and lets his feeling get in the way of his decisions. The precarious self-identity with which the Nice Guy operates paves the way for constant shifts in his beliefs and principles, leaving him in a state of oblivion and self-doubt. Example of the Nice Guy: Alfred is a deeply insecure person. The thought of approaching girls spontaneously is inconceivable for Alfred. The word ‘spontaneity’ itself makes him anxious. Alfred is anxious a lot. Alfred might have someone he considers his girlfriend, and while she might flatter him or laugh at his jokes, she will never engage in sexual activities just for the sake of sex. She might do it to get gifts or to rise in social status, or for the sake of other benefits, but never based on attraction alone. Alfred’s girlfriends can’t seem to stop yelling at him, and have no problem embarrassing him in public. When he tries to be a gentleman and pay the bill at the restaurant, for example, Alfred’s girlfriend snags the bill out of his hand and begins yelling at him for assuming her dependence on him. When Alfred gets an erection watching a film with his girlfriend featuring a lesbian sex scene, he apologizes for getting hard after she feels his erection and begins screaming at him. It would be fair to say that Alfred’s girlfriend has claimed ownership of his balls. Alfred is convinced that his girlfriend isn’t a ‘slut’ because she never lets him deepthroat her and do other “deviating” sexual acts. When his reasoning is questioned, Alfred replies that her refusal is an indicator that she hasn’t done it with anyone else. Now, I bet that while you might not posses all the characteristics of Alfred (or that you would like to admit), you probably embody more Nice Guy traits than those of The Gentleman. Not to worry. I was once an Alfred myself. Remember, it doesn't matter where you are now in life. It really doesn't. What matters is... WHERE YOU WANT TO BE.

  • Madelyn Kreiger

    Mark -- Mark approached Annabel between first and second period. She had early lunch, that much he knew. She usually hung out with the art crowd, pressed against the back wall, sitting on the floor with lunches in the laps. Marton High had plenty of benches, art kids just liked to be *special snowflakes.* Mark pushed through the lunch line, looking for the pink haired girl. He shouldn't have to talk to her, but *Jae wasn't in class.* Mark needed to talk to him, so the sister would have to do. When Mark approached, Annabel was looking at her phone. Her friend, Mimmy, was sketching a dragon, the scales taking on a lifelike texture. Mark felt insecure, Mimmy was someone he wanted to impress, the "hot girl" in their grade. The fact she was the fag's sister's friend didn't help. Still, he had to talk to Jae. "Hey, er, Anna, can we talk?" Mark began. Mimmy looked up first. Annabel refused. "I think you have done enough Marcus," Mimmy said. "I need to talk to Jae about last week," Mark tried again. "I want to--" "I don't give a fuck what you want," Annabel said. She started packing up her lunch, putting her phone away, and shouldering her backpack. She didn't look at Mark once. "You are fucking shit. Don't talk to my brother again." Mimmy picked up her own stuff, following Annabel out of the cafeteria. xxx It took make three months to realize that Annabel no longer attended Morton High. She was usually in the play, but when Mark went, trying to find Jae in the crowd, she wasn't there. The pamphlet they handed out, drawn by Mimmy, didn't have her name on it. Well, it did, but it merely said "Music by Annabel Gordon" with no mention of her in the cast or behind scenes staff. When he approached Mimmy, there was ice between them. He slipped on his words. Mimmy seemed to understand why he was here, but her perfect smile scrunched up and she walked away. "Mimmy!" Mark called after her, fighting through the thick groups of parents and students. "I need to ask--" Mimmy made a jerking motion with her hand. "I know you've been looking for Anna, but she's gone. They left town a while ago." "Mimmy I--" Mark began. Mimmy held up a hand. "Don't call me that, like we're friends. It's Miriam." "I... Okay..." Mark felt his face turn red. He had thought they were friends, they had been in the same school for ten years. She lived down his street. Or if not friends, he thought he was at least part of her world. He felt his anger curl into a fist. Jae's face flashed in his mind. He released. "I just wanted to apologize." Mimmy let out a bitter laugh, though it sounded staged. "You shouldn't have to apologize for being a piece of shit, Marcus. You should just stop being shit. Don't go looking for them, they're better off without you." xxx The ten year reunion was a little awkward. Morton High had about 950 students total, give or take a few addicts. So when they planned the '05 reunion, it wasn't a huge affair. There were only 130 adults to invite. Mark found out about the event through Facebook. He had moved to Oregon for college and tried to forget about Langleyville. His parents never called and he kept in touch with his younger sister, the only family member who still liked him. Who kept up with his kids and his wife. Mark got an invite from Chester Stevens and decided he would like to go. The invite said "Former Students Only" and listed a dress code, theme, and small cost to attend. Mark told Stacey he planned to go visit his parents and she yawned, showing her adult braces. Stacey was not someone who cared about sentimental events like High School Reunions, she had a similar relationship with her past that Mark did. That's why they worked together, they tried to forget the past and didn't bring up their former selves much. Still, Mark felt guilty for hiding so much from his own children, now six and four. They asked him about his family and he claimed they were just busy. He wondered if his son would ever ask to see the empty year books. Mark had taken a pen to the first one, writing with his left hand "see you next summer" and "good times man" until the book looked halfway warm. The others were all empty, his face only showing up in the Grade Page. He had been banned from Prom, and the editor of the yearbook [Mimmy Lewis] hated his guts. So he had been largely erased from the world he once took so much pride in. And he couldn't blame her. Shouldn't blame her. But he wanted to. When Annabel left, Mimmy went on a spree to ruin his social life. Whatever she told the other kids had ended so many of his friendships. Only Blake and Shep stood by him, but they were awkward, social lepers as well. Still, Mark wanted to go. He had become a different man. He knew what he did was wrong. He was careful to tell his son, Luke, to be careful and kind. He was gentle with Sarah, refusing to allow his kids to turn out like him. Better to be kind than cruel. Better to have some friends instead of hating yourself. And Mark still hated himself. Stacey seemed to have the same view. Whatever history she hid from him, he could see it come out in her lessons to the kids. "All love is okay. Gay parents are just as vital as straight." "We don't say people are fat. It makes them feel bad." "We don't hit." "If someone is sad, you ask if they are okay. You don't laugh." He could see the girl she must have been, how ashamed she was now. Still, Mark loved her. Loved her like he couldn't love himself. He booked a flight for June 18th. He was going back to high school. xxx Mark didn't look the same. He had thinned out, gotten into sports, and devoted his time to his family and career. When he approached the table, his name wasn't even written down. He had to have an awkward conversation with Sharon Kipler about a blank name tag. She seemed to go white when he said his name. She spelled his name wrong the first time. Mucus. He offered to write it for her, saying it was okay if she needed him to spell it out. She wrote Markus instead of Marcus, but at that point her cold eyes were burning him. He took what he could, dignity that is, and wore it. When he got inside, he recognized most of the people on site. There was Jackson Tamson talking to Couch Lent. There was Angela and Angel Smolder, the hottest twins in town, now 20 pounds heavier and both pregnant. Mark moved through the group with the oiled guilt of a bully. And he had been one. At some point he took the name tag off and threw it behind a planter. It was then that he saw Mimmy talking to a redhead in the corner. The girl was very light, short, with a naturally angular face. *Annabel!* He had not seen her since high school. He had tried to find her on FB, but she must have blocked every Marcus she could find. Or she used a different name. He approached. Mimmy seemed to pause, looking for a name. She didn't recognize him. "Mark." Annabel said it with the cold clarity of someone wronged. "Why the fuck would you come talk to me, at all?" Mimmy looked angry as well. "Why are you here?" "I was invited." "I will make sure that doesn't happen again," Mimmy said. Mark sighed. "It's been ten years." "I won't forget what you did to my brother in a thousand," Annabel said. She stormed off, tears streaming down her cheeks. "I wanted to say sorry," Mark whispered. Mimmy seemed to decide something. She approached him and asked him to follow her into a private corner. When they were away from the loud conversation and heated lighting, she asked him one question, "Do you know what happened to Jason?" "No." "He killed himself two months after they left town. He was in and out of the hospital for-- suicide attempts. The school never mentioned it, but I knew. Annabel knew, of course, but you didn't. I wondered if you knew or were just stupid stubborn," Mimmy said. "He died. He's dead." "What does that have to do with her hating--" Mark trailed off. "You were mentioned in the suicide note. Jae mentioned you by name... You were the last straw Mark," Mimmy said. "You're the one who told him to go kill himself." Mark blinked. Then, with precise steps, he walked out of the reunion, got in his rental car, and cried.

  • Lera Heathcote

    My experience is similar, though less extreme. I have two strong pieces of advice: 1. OKCupid 2. statistics This is what I mean. This is what jumped out at me: > I live far away from any large city, so I don't think I will ever find someone like me to meet and date. I have been treated for depression and at one point a year ago was suicidal because I didn't know how I could go on living, all torn up inside. It looks to me that your problem is not the church. Not any more. And your ex wife's hold over your children is a secondary issue, though serious. If my experience is any guide then your real problem is loneliness. And there is a cure. Five years ago I was divorced (TBM wife, 19 years), and had just been diagnosed as autistic (which explained why my previous 40 years had been such a mess), and was living in a remote village with no money, no way to get any, and terrified of stepping outside. The loneliness was the worst thing. I saw no way out. What did I have to offer anybody? Realistically? Autism, poverty, an interest in comic books and obscure philosophical and economic ideas, a history of failed jobs, fear of talking to people, and when I do get talking I go for ages about my previous Mormon life. And I was miles from civilisation. Oh, and I had only just stopped living with my parents (I went back home when my marriage failed). What a catch, eh? I'm not a gay, but I do relate to feeling that I was destined to be alone so had better just accept it. To cut a long story short, I finally got on the dating site OKCupid. I name it because not all sites are the same. Back then (and I don't know if it is still true) you basically had four kinds of dating site: 1. The big name sites. Whatever their intentions, they make the most money if you are not happy, and if they lie to you. And if you report a predator the predator will be back soon under a different email, because predators are profitable regular customers. Sorry to be brutal, but I think paid dating sites are much like the church: big promises, all happy smiles, but dig deeper and their business plan doesn't add up unless it hurts you in a way that you blame yourself. 2. Small name sites. They are either the big sites repackaged, or they don't have enough people to be useful to someone in a rural town. 3. PlentyOfFish.com - back then this had the most people, and was free. It even had a dozen or so people in my local small town! But there was not enough detailed information about each person. If your background is non-standard (like gay ex-mormon grandpa) you will despair of ever meeting somebody who understands. 4. OKCupid. This was the second biggest of the free sites. Only a couple of people close by, but a reasonable number within a three hours of me. The great thing about OKC was its devotion to data. I answered literally hundreds of questions which enabled them to suggest some pretty good matches. One them is now my wife and I have never been happier. And yes, OKCupid is LGBT friendly. In fact it once urged users to boycott Firefox when the Firefox CEO supported prop 8. There may be others now that are even better, especially for a particular niche, but just be aware that the paid ones make money from misery, by definition. OKC's passion for data was legendary. Their most famous report was a statistical analysis of why paid for sites make you LESS likely to find a partner than not visiting them at all. The report went viral. After that, one of the big sites bought out OKC, and promised to let them continue being free, and continue being just the same... except that the report disappeared. The site creator said he had found he made a statistical error, but did not comment further. Basically it looked like the big sites realised their number was up, and OKC was going to put them out of business. So they paid several million dollars to remove that report and ensure that OKC never advertises enough to be a serious problem. I hope they are still around and still as big. Because I cannot praise them highly enough. But that brings me to the second rule, and this is essential. **Part 2: statistics** This is maybe the hardest part. Dating today is a numbers game. But we did not evolve for that. We evolved in small groups, where if you got rejected three or four times you would probably end up single for life. So after being rejected three or four times either you are emotionally broken and five up, or you likely become hardened and heartless, which is even worse. But somehow you have to get through it. You have to remember that you are NOT dating in a pool of fifty hunter gatherers where maybe five people are eligible to date. You are dating in a pool of MILLIONS. If you get your hopes dashed three times, ten times, even a hundred times, the next person could be the one. Now it's incredibly hard to stay genuine and vulnerable while being hurt hat often. But you have to remember the statistics. This is where OKCupid's questions were so helpful. By answering hundred of questions I was able to seriously narrow down the millions to just the few who might be possible matches. And (being the kind of person who writes a lot - can you tell?) when I met somebody I thought might be "the one" we spent two weeks sharing ten page emails so that by the time we met it was just the formality of making sure the other person was not an extremely clever con artist. Basically I knew I wanted to marry her before we even met in real life, and this is four glorious years later and I cannot begin to describe how much my life has improved. And she seems pretty happy too. The numbers game adds its own challenges as well. If you date online you will meet your share of horrible people. Predators, people who make you feel like dirt, or just people who say thoughtless things. Anonymity brings out the worst in people. It's known as John Gabriel's [Greater Internet F*ckwad Theory](https://www.penny-arcade.com/comic/2004/03/19/) : **Normal person + anonymity + audience (you) = total f*ckwad** It's more academically called the [online disinhibition effect](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Online_disinhibition_effect) or classical scholars will recognise it as Plato's Ring of Gyges: when given a magic ring that makes people invisible (in this case the Internet) people become horrible. Luckily I missed this (or, being autistic, was too dense to realise), but before my wife met me she was about to give up online dating: one guy she dated was only using her to get back at his ex. Another lied about everything. And she lost count of the number of men who just sent her dick pictures. If you're not prepared for this, have a drink and just remember the statistics: yes, 99 percent of people you like will end up disappointing or hurting you. But if you can find the strength to be philosophical, to not hate the for being human, and to keep looking, you will find The One. I did. >IF you can wait and not be tired by waiting, >Or being lied about, don't deal in lies, >Or being hated, don't give way to hating, >And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise: >If you can dream - and not make dreams your master; >If you can think - and not make thoughts your aim; >If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster >And treat those two impostors just the same; >If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken >Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools, >Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken, >And stoop and build 'em up with worn-out tools: >If you can make one heap of all your winnings >And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss, >And lose, and start again at your beginnings >And never breathe a word about your loss; >If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew >To serve your turn long after they are gone, >And so hold on when there is nothing in you >Except the Will which says to them: 'Hold on!' ... >Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it, >And - which is more - you'll find your Man, my son!

  • Jules Wisozk

    > And yet Tywin never really did anything to keep Joffrey from being his useless self. He was taking steps. Had Joffrey survived more than a month or so after Tywin showed up things may have been different. The show especially tried to show Tywin taking steps to reign in Joffrey's excesses, and trying to do a better job with Tommen. > And what damaging precedent that Robert had established? Aerys II had shown that he was a brutal tyrant who would murder his loyal subjects, Rhaegar had apparently kidnapped a Stark engaged to Robert and Rhaegar then fought for Aerys. He didn't go over to the rebels at any point, he was politically saying that what his father did was fine. The political argument made by Jon Arryn about Robert was that the Targaryen family's tyranny had made it illegitimate and that the proper ruler should be Robert, who was close in bloodline to them and hadn't done any of these things to people that the Targaryens had. Westeros has no legal mechanism through which a king can be rendered illegitimate through tyrannical acts. Robert's uprising was an illegal and treasonous act against the legal and legitimate King of Westeros. The argument that he had a *moral* justification for rising up against Aerys is little different than the argument that Renly should be king over Stannis, as the former was a competent statesman and the latter lacked the diplomacy and flexibility to govern a culturally diverse nation like the Seven Kingdoms. As for Rhaegar, note that he was actively trying to *avoid* entangling himself in the conflict until Aerys threatened the lives of his wife and children. There is also strong evidence that Rhaegar was *trying* to unseat Aerys through more legitimate avenues, but was undone by Varys' informing on him to the King. > And so being an underdog means that he doesn't intend to try govern? No, my point was merely that he sacrificed the lives of his followers on a long-shot gamble for the Iron Throne. > No, Robert's recognition is pointless. Joffrey isn't, and you're arguing apparently that because Stannis doesn't have evidence he should just give up on resisting a regime that's murdered before and after taking power and is definitely illegal. Robert's recognition establishes a legal statuos quo. To usurp the presumption of Joffrey's legitimacy, Stannis must supply *proof* that Joffrey is not Robert's issue and therefore has no claim to his inheritance. Also note that Stannis' regime commits murder as well. There are only shades of grey in this series. > No one accuses the Brackens and Blackwoods of kinslaying and he makes it clear he doesn't even believe that he was responsible for Renly's death, he never attempted to burn a child alive (consideration does not equal actually making an effort to do so), I believe every person he has burned was guilty of something and as I pointed out Shireen will probably fall under the category of "all life on this world will end if I don't" which doesn't change the horror but definitely does change the context. Melisandre did it on Stannis' behalf, and he either knew her intentions or was willfully ignorant of them. Renly's blood is on his hands, whether he did the deed himself or not. And he may protest that he had no part in it, but he admitted that night he dreamed of slaying Renly, and would seem to have a guilty conscience from that knowledge. As for the rest, it remains to be seen how Stannis will act in the books. However, I sincerely doubt that D&D will prove to be as inaccurate in their depiction of his arc as many Stannis fans presume. They created his on-screen persona in direct consultation with GRRM, after all. > So the Sands will all forget their own political knowledge to make this happen. And it will happen before Aegon seals a deal to marry Arianne and get Dornish support. This is presuming that Aegon agrees to marry Arianne in the first place. Keep in mind that he is presently planning on marrying Danaerys, which was the entire justification that Tyrion fed him for invading Westeros in the first place. Dany is bringing an elite sellsword army and three dragons, while Dorne is almost guaranteed to support his claim regardless given their hatred for the ruling Lannister regime. What does he stand to gain from marrying Arianne that he can't achieve elsewhere? > But she insists that she isn't "no one" which a FM is supposed to do. She does, but is she correct? From observing the FM's training regime it would seem that their purpose is not so much to eliminate their acolytes' individuality as it is to teach them to *suppress* that personality such that no part of it leaks through to expose their disguise. Arya may have ended Season 6 wearing her "Arya of House Stark" mask once again, but that girl is as much a mask as any of her other personas is at this point. Look at the "Mercy" chapter and that transformation is much more apparent. She is explicitly "Mercy" right up until she kills Raff the Sweetling, when she makes a sudden transformation back to "Arya." *This* is what Jaqen meant when he said she was "no one"...she is now capable of seamlessly switching between personalities, without letting one bleed into the other. > What he needs is to stay in the Vale and secure his power there. He isn't doing that because he's constantly leaving to go all over Westeros, and you can't claim you control Robin if you've just left him under the control of one of the major lords who isn't a die-hard supporter of yours. You can if he's been thoroughly brainwashed, which that scene was meant to evidence. Besides...it's a TV show. There is only so much screen time available, so sometimes a character needs to jump around a bit more than is entirely logical in order to advance the narrative. GRRM can write in a dozen supporting goons to do LF's bidding, but D&D have much less to work with. Thus is the nature of an adaptation. > He sent Sansa's friend, not Sansa. That he doesn't care about Sansa as a person doesn't change that he's obsessed with her. And he was clearly not happy that she was just being a dutiful daughter in things like how she kissed him after that. Which is why I'm arguing that he sold her to Ramsay so that he could then turn around and ride to her "rescue." LF is manipulative to the extreme, but he lacks the capacity to actually *empathize* with people and that bounds his ability to anticipate their actions. This follows a general theme where fear and manipulation bring short-term gains, but loyalty like that the North gives to the Starks is only won through authenticity and real human connections. Just look at Tywin, whose legacy won't last a year past his death. > Except that he would give control of Sansa to someone else with nothing to ever guarantee he could get her back. And Tyrion wasn't there, and making them ride to press her claim along with an alleged marriage to Robin would do plenty to get the Vale to ride. He handed her over to a monster he knew she would never be loyal to, and from which a "rescue" would be enthusiastically welcomed (or so he clearly thought, given how he approached Sansa in the show). > And if you're bringing up the books for this, I'll point out he isn't giving her to the Boltons in the books. The person he's getting her engaged to is in the Vale and he probably plans to murder him as soon as Sansa could plausibly be pregnant with Harry's child. He's not marrying her off to Ramsay Bolton, but Harry the Heir has shown himself to be a right and proper prick right from the get go. He may well be setting her up for a similar scenario.

  • Kenyon Franecki

    Okay look I want to continue this debate because I think it's important. Yes Africa is fucked but that just isn't an indicator of mental inferiority. I'm not saying whites are doing that to them, I personally think the dictators and strongmen that run these countries are responsible for the huge suffering in their countries. And let's not pretend there is some racial reason for these dictators being corrupt and downright evil. You only have to look back 80 years to see these awful things occurring in Europe. I do think we will disagree on this next point but I do think the fact these regimes were able to take power has its roots in European Colonialism. Okay now I just want to look at some of these facts you're saying. >Why does the Zulu language show a clear lack of capacity for abstract-thought, given the definitions ascribed to particular words? Words like, "Obligation", are defined as to "bind the hands and feet". Square, circle and triangle are all the same word. They appear have no concept of gradiation, as well. One can say, "It's up the tree", but not "It's half-way up the tree", in Zulu. Problem number one with this is a lot of these aren't true. Zulu is actually available on google translate if you want to check it out yourself. Square, circle and triangle all have different words, with square and circle having many synonyms. You can see these aren't just anglicisations like words for 'pentagon' and 'hexagon' are. There is also a word for obligation. https://www.google.ie/webhp?sourceid=chrome-instant&ion=1&espv=2&ie=UTF-8#q=google+translate+zulu&* It's also a very silly argument because if the literal translation of obligation 'is bind hands and feet' then that's pretty feckin similar to our word which comes from 'oblige' from the latin 'to bind toward' (ob-ligare). I also just don't believe this says a heck of a lot about intellectual capability because my own country's language (Irish) was massively lacking in abstract words when it had to be standardised after many years of disuse and that's firmly a white language. Okay yes I've seen this load of links before. Firstly I'm sorry I'm not going to buy the books they link to so I can only read what's online. There's a few bad citations there like you said average FST between dogs is 0.154. The study is only on East Asian dogs firstly so they will clearly have a much smaller genetic diversity than humans worldwide (except they don't as it turns out). Secondly the 0.154 you're quoting is the global standard deviation of the tests. The actually mean FST given is 0.580. Just in East Asian dogs. So humans clearly are far more homogenous as a species. Yes humans are one species as we can all interbreed for fertile children. I have no way to see your claims about how closely related we are to Homo Erectus and Neanderthal but I hope they don't contain the same mistakes. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11773246 The dog link^ All in all though the FST argument simply says that it is 'possible' humans are varied enough that they could have different levels of intelligence. It does not provide evidence in and of itself and does not allow you to treat them as another species. Nearly all other biologists believe race has no effect on intelligence. >Did you just share a link to a page created by a man named "Jakub"? Lol (I imagine the irony eludes you). Yes it does. Is it something to do with it being a name of Slavic origin? This didn't really provide any argument. I still stand by the facts that whites IQs are affected by being in a fucked up country too. Just read the study you linked for the class of African immigrant children in college. Barack Obama is an example as his family come from Kenyan immigration rather than slavery. The study looked at a university called Davidson Academy which rejected affirmative action and found the blacks they take in are Nigerian Igbo (post slavery immigrants.) Please don't insist Nigerians and Ghanese are doing better because of white involvement. These countries have some of the lowest percentages of whites. Ghana has only 0.08% whites while Nigeria has even less. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White_Africans_of_European_ancestry These emigrants are doing well in the UK, better than the local whites. This certainly isn't because they have a load of whites helping them. And also Liberia? Liberia was founded by ex-american slaves. You're trying to tell me they weren't affected by European colonialism. Once again it seems clear to me it is not being black that affects one's success in school. There is so much difference depending on which country the black person comes from. Look back in the day I would've bought into the whole "we've given them welfare and they're still useless" argument but there's one thing that often makes me reject that. You will see that exact same argument in every country worldwide. Look at the US, they give the blacks help but they're still in poverty and responsible for more than their fair share of crime. Of course people then say well it's because they're black that they can't function like us whites. Okay now go to Australia. One group there that often struggles are the aboriginals. Despite the state giving lots of welfare and affirmative action, they are still in poverty, responsible for more than their fair share of crime and they're the ones doing and dealing a lot of the drugs. Okay now Ireland. Basically no blacks. We still have a huge class of people, living in inner city urban areas and huge amounts of them live off welfare and the state. They live in poverty, they account for the majority of violent crime and drug crime and generally act like eijets. Does that sound familiar? Except they're white. It's the exact same thing that is present in the US but there's no racial factor. It doesn't stop people calling them lazy and saying it's their fault. This is why I think the way we look at these people is wrong. When you put humans in the same conditions of poverty they all turn out very similar with very similar behaviours. Even whites. I do think the way the problem is approached is wrong (like I think affirmative action based on race is just stupid and causes hate) but I absolutely think that putting these problems down to race is misunderstanding the root cause and will lead to no solution. Look I would actually like to ask you a few questions. If you've made it through my wall of text then I'd love if you could answer these. For example you obviously have done a lot of research on blacks being inferior. I simply am curious how this comes about. What made you initially decided blacks were not capable of being like whites? Why do you think you followed these beliefs so strongly rather than rejecting them like many others do? Also it might be a bit personal but do you come into contact with black people much outside of strangers? Do they actually seem different to you? These are not to try trick you into an argument, I simply wish to understand where this comes from. Personally one of the biggest reasons I can't believe these arguments is that of the black people I know (who are from immigrant families and so not really growing up in poverty) I see absolutely no difference in intellectual or emotional capability. One of my better friends is doing theoretical physics in Uni and is black and that's a pretty taxing subject. This is obviously just anecdotal but I really do want to understand.

  • Eldred Pfannerstill

    First of all, sorry if some of my statements are weird and poor spelled, trying my best to be readable (Learning in the proccess).   Second: i dont wanna invalidate any possibility, because like i said, thats the beauty of dark souls. I was just explaining why i felt that changing names makes no sense for me at this point of the franchise. And always my opinion, which is just another interpretation of the lore.   >I don't know why you refer to names in such a romantic light. You don't need a name if you have other evidence, that's why most of the lore in these games is very vague and unclear. If everything had the same name, people wouldn't have as much fun trying to figure everything out. More than romantic light, i see it as a literary resource to keep the story followable. i analyzed the way they used their wording, as far as the translations let me, and watched closely what they done, and never repeated. This is commonly used in movies, series, games or books adaptations to keep the attention focused where it matters. Its not a thing to make things simpler, just cleaner.   Tackling your statements about Yorhska and Nameless King. >I disagree. As everyone who has played a Sous game knows, we never knew Gwyn's Firstborn. His birth name was never mentioned and we will most likely never learn what it was. Yet in DS3 it's quite clear who the Nameless King is. We don't need a name to form a picture of something. >See how changing someones name can give you more to think about? It's more interesting to think about who Yorshka was before Gwyndolin "found her". I want to separete two concepts, proper name, and narrative name.   Proper name is what we all think of a name, given name to someone or something in the dark souls universe (Gwynevere, Gwyndolin, Rosaria, Gertrude...)   Narrative name, is, outside the univese, what the developers or the narrator gaves us to identify an object, character or whathever. Proper names works here, but sometimes they use concepts like "Gwyn's first born, The Witch of Izalith, the Nameless moon...". Eventually, they could give us a proper name for them, or just a new interpretation about them. Thats what i though, they used titles when they wanted to be ambiguous, not names.   What they never did in the entire franchise, is change a proper given name. So was Yorhska. In the past she could be named differently, but in dark souls narrative they ONLY gave us her proper actual name; doesnt matter how she was called before, we automatically identify that character as Yorhska. I hope i explained good enough the slightly differences between the narrative they use, and the lore itself. >I'm sorry but that is entirely your opinion, not a universal fact. It's clearly not hard to follow as many people have made connections already, so that part of your sentence is redundant. On the contrary, changing a name of a well known character is more interesting IMO. It gives you more to think about instead of just "Oh yea that's Gwynevere". More questions arise like; Who is Rosaria? Why does she have Gwyneveres miracle? If it is Gwynevere, why did she change her name? Why is she in the Cathedral of the Deep? Yeah, all i write is my opinion. Like yours and the others. We have few facts to make the whole picture. Changing name is interesting lorewise, as the narrative goes in a game or a movie, its easier, and cleaner to keep characters with given names the same for the sake of the cohesive storytelling like i said (Want to point out that im talking about the narrative, not the lore). In my opinion. Who is Rosaria? a heavenly daughter of Gwynever who could've served as a Maiden of Gwynevere if she was the Queen of Lothric. Why does she have Gwynevere's miracle? Because was given to her maidens in the past, could've happened again, or maybe because being her daughter fits the theme. Why is she in the cathedral of the deep?, maybe her role was to give "salvation" in her onw way, she could been in the cathedral before it were tainted, and one of the Arch-bishops of deep put her in that "jail" to keep her safe from Aldritch or other members of the church. Its a strong leitmotiv, transformation, in dark souls 3. Thats the hard one to answer, but this could end being too long for a merely reply post. >The royal family are forgotten in Drangleic, not Lothric. They are two separate lands. It's pretty clear that everyone remembers the royal family in DS3. From Lothric himself all the way to Gwyn. Hell even Gwyndolin shows up in the game Yeah, we agreed that Drangleic was far enough for their names to be forgotten. However, we dont see any try, or intention to give us wrong names for the royal family, keeping them as forgotten. In the history of religion is commonly found different names given for the same concept or even gods (Like it was the case for the greek, roman and norse pantheon). We cant forget that we found items, and symbolism for the Old royal family in Drangleic as well (Heide for example) Lothric, like you said, remember well enough the royal family due to it being a kingdom directly ruled by close relatives, maybe Gwynevere or her daughters, for the sake of linking the flame, and workshipping Gwyn's first born. >That makes literally no sense whatsoever. We need to go to Anor Londo in order to fight Leonhard. We don't get summoned there by him. So by the time we fight him, we already know Anor Londo still exists because we're in it. That is a very bad attempt at brushing off the implications. The way Leonhard speaks when you approach him in Anor Londo, gives you pause for thought. He's not there to "let you know it exists". It's got much deeper implications than that Id give you the point that my explanation wasnt good enough. I could expand why i think that its a strong connection, like origin of Leonhart, and why his face is burnt and.. all thats stuff. >So do I. The heavenly children do seem to have some sort of similarity to Gwynevere in some way. I wouldn't call Rosaria evolved however, as she turns her subjects into man-grubs. Maybe "evolved" wasn't the right word, id used evolved in a sense of difference, a step forward or behind. Maybe her kind of rebirth is due to the Cathedral of the deep Corruption. >The justification probably being to throw us off and have us talking about it on the internet, like we're doing right now. From gets off on this sort of thing. They will never, ever outright say "Yea that's Gwynevere". That's not how they do things. Id agree that From soft telling us "Thats it" is not the way they told us the story. But at least, by my points, you could also agree that none of the given proper names changed yet (As i explained). Thats why im replying, love to see what others interpretations are to keep the lore fresh for me. >Precisely. So if it's possible that Yorshka had another name, why is it not possible for Rosaria to be in the same situation. From the start, Yorhska is a proper name, a given one, the only one From soft used for her. Thats, imo, the same for Rosaria. Thats why i hardly see her as Gwynevere, she has her own identity and lore in Dark souls 3. >That's fair enough. I don't think it's Gwynevere either, but I admit that there is a relatively strong case for people to think that it is her. I hope we encounter something in the DLC that gives us a hint as to what happened to Gwynevere and if she really is any of the characters we suspect she might be. We both agree on this.   Thanks for taking your time rplying.

  • Dominic Wolf

    ...You don't have any idea what you're talking about do you? I wasn't even the one who downvoted you btw, but this is getting absurd. >and I think by the way that their widespread in the population is way more recent The dish became popular and available for purchase in supermarkets and restaurants in the late 1960s. It has been adapted since its introduction to Japan, and is so widely consumed that it can be called a national dish. http://www.dims.ne.jp/timelyresearch/2008/081014/ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_curry NHK documentary: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tennQJl7hho >but that doesn't hinder the fact that it has more of a feeling of exotism than ramen for example. YASHOKU IS NOT EXOTIC. Yashoku dishes are so familiar to the Japanese people they're about as exotic as an egg roll is to an American. Or American chop suey. Do you think egg rolls and chop suey are exotic? Then you must be from the 1950's because that was the last time they were exotic. People make curry and hamburg steak at home, curry is now practically the national dish of Japan, and you want to pretend that's *exotic*? Dude, do a little research. It's not a secret. You are correct in that fortune cookies are analogous to how 'exotic' yashoku feels to the Japanese, as in, not exotic at all. >And it has gone popular again because of the "recent" trend in Japan (and basically every non-western country that has developed) to be more open to foreign influence Literally no cultural expert would agree that modern day Japan is experiencing more openness to foreign influence compared to the Showa era. The Showa era was the period of rapid Americanization of Japan. Girls went from wearking yukata to wearing hotpants and croptops in roughly 20 years, along with American music like jazz becoming popular, and the suit being standardized as the official office worker's clothing of choice. After the economic collapse of the 1990's, Japan withdrew into itself and moved away from the Americanization period. There's been an opposite reaction towards rediscovering and celebrating Japanese culture outside of the shadow of the Meiji era. The 80's and 90's saw huge infrastructure projects to restore hundreds of year old traditional Shinto temples and there was a big push to "reinvent" Western goods using Japanese sensibilities and aesthetics. One of the best examples of this is the hybrid between western and Japanese style scissors made during that period, as well as the birth of cellphones that used email addresses instead of sms. Japan resisted smart phones for so long even Africa got smartphones before Japan did. Again, dude, do just a little research before spouting off total nonsense. >don't act like only children and neckbeards watch anime. Sure, I won't act like it, I'll say it. **Only children and otakus watch anime.** Take it right from the horses mouth, most normal Japanese people only watched anime when they were kids, or like older anime and manga like Blackjack and Slam Dunk. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F1vrdtyLPjU https://www.cartercutlery.com/shozaburo/ I know what your trying to say "but there are teenage otaku!" Sure. And they're rare. Middle and highschool is an EXTREMELY stressful time for the Japanese, and if they're not studying, working to support themselves or doing their own chores because they live on their own (which is shocklingly common at that age), they're completley and totally devoted to their singular school club https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8bI96cC7Ea0 NHK documentary about school clubs: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3HpTzsSuf_s Also, not all otaku are into anime. Many Japanese are kpop otaku, or fashion otaku, etc, which is a legacy of that whole "one club acitivity for 6 years straight during your formative years" https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MEflX5_Lxj0 Japanese kids don't have the free time to watch anime. Only the kids who don't care about schools, don't have jobs or only have jobs to support their hobby, and the kids who go straight home after school and don't do clubs, have time for anime. Especially when it airs so late at night and school starts so early in japan, with often LONG commutes by train or bike since many go to school far from where they live. >Flying Witch must be to your taste since they eat glorious traditional Nippon food instead of filthy omurice Actually my favorite anime are sports anime, including Shoukogeki no Soma for all the great food science and Western food recipes. It's like America's Test Kitchen (one of my favorite PBS shows) but an anime. I actually personally HATE Japanese food, as I'm Indian and our cultures have completley different palettes. Much of Japanese food is too mild for me, and focuses on things like texture or the poetry of eating foods in season, like a bowl of oden in the winter. I'm not about that life. I like proper curry, not the weaksauce Japanese version with honey and apples. That's why I don't understand the love for yoshoku, since I don't like yoshoku either. Hamburg steak is a poor man's steak in america and the wrong way to eat a hamburger. I'm ideologically opposed to most yoshoku, they go against all of my principles of good food. >but producers have to sell them anime when they are young Teenagers do not buy expensive anime with the disposable income they don't have. Being a Japanese teenager is damn expensive. Bookbags cost upwards of 300 dollars there (not kidding) you have to buy your textbooks for school and your prep books for exams, you have to buy and maintain a formal school uniform (including dry cleaning and tailoring). Japanese stationary that's cool looking is often expensive and sold at a premium if you want to be trendy, casual clothes in Japan are more expensive than they are in America, haircuts cost more too, you have to supply all your own equipment for you clubs, so if you're on a baseball team (which is popular) your paying for a shit ton of expensive equipment. You have to pay for bike maintenance and train fare (but not gas money or car insurance), eating out with your friends is expensive too unless you eat at Mcdonald's. Karaoke and the movies similarly cost alot of money. Most boys play expensive video games, and you have to buy or make your own lunch everyday because schools don't offer free lunch at the middle and highschool level. You think kids have money left over to buy expensive anime bluerays? That cost hundreds of thousands of yen they don't have? Most kids spend that extra money on cheap stuff like manga and light novels, which costs only a few hundred yen (in the realm of less than 10 dollars) rather than stuff that's like 100 to 150 dollars for 2 episodes. >by for example eating trendy food that feels modern and western Eating at Mcdonald's and Starbucks is trendy and western. Eating yashoku is neither trendy nor western. Have you seen the inside of a yashoku restaurant? They're like even dingier versions of a Denny's. Yashoku is food like spaghetti fried with ketchup and sausage, it's not high class stuff. NHK documentary abour Yoshoku: https://youtu.be/bhFB85c6oTE?t=4m17s

  • Olaf Rice

    > Russia and China are not examples of Communism, they are examples of corrupt people doing corrupt things. No they are example of communism where the government has complete control over the economy and the distribution of wealth. I believe you are referring to the area between socialism and communism . I cannot be for sure, but half of your comments refer to socialism and the other half refer to communism and it is confusing. On the topic of corruption and communism I believe that is hard to pin down because it will always appear to be corrupt when you deal with any government. Some one will always get the shaft and in the case of communism they realize that regulating everything through the government is an impossible task to this "corruption" you speak of was created out of necessity. This corruption had to happen or Venezuela would happen all over again. Sure you have your classical corruption like bribery, but favoritism or neglect simply had to happen because they lacked the ability to reach this Utopian dream. "It was to make all men equal, to have no one be oppressed, to have every man as important, powerful, and able as any other" so a genius is equal to some one that is mentally handicapped? A crazy person should have the same amount of power as a sane person? Here we run into a problem that the United States ran into. If you want all those things then how can you refute someone that wants to be more powerful or wants to be more successful and so on? If you are all equal then you all have the same chance to be successful and all the other things, you know them. " The Native American peoples, prior to being conquered and largely murdered, lived in a Communist society" this is not equivalent do to massive amounts of over population and international trade and all these other complexities. Think if the Indians were running out of room to live and were struggling to survive. That communist frame work would crumble, but that is the real problem isn't it. Communism needs a prosperous society to start with. "True free market capitalism does not care about a corporate oligarchy." this is a falsehood commonly made by the left. For example man one says "I am on the right and want a free market" man 2 says "are you crazy you want a completely unregulated market, that is suicide". The assumption made is just stupid. The capitalist wants a free market in a perfect world, but openly admit that people are corrupt and know regulations are needed. I do not know how to make this analagy so don't kill me on this one. When you have an absolute free market the monopoly oppress the market which drastically restricts free trade and destroys the supply and demand model. Now regulating monopolies restricts free trade in its own right, but at the same time it opens up huge swaths of the market to the general public. It is a lesser of the 2 evils neither is wanted but it is a clear choice. I cannot remember what I said before so I will just say that the tangent created between the push and pull of the government and the oligarchy is what creates communist ideals. When the free market seems unfair including jobs the people plea to the government for help (communism/maxism/socialism), or they think these people worked hard and got their because people are different. Some people are better than other people and tuff shit. Status and wealth does not create happiness so stop crying. The question is not why aren't more people rich millionaires that run corporations, the question is "how are those people that crazy to work 120 hour weeks to run a international corporation" "massive amounts of corporate interests" corporate interests are the 3rd wheel....you have the left the right and the corporate interests that are only tied to politics as far as gaining legislation in their favor. I'm not going to get into the Ologarchy and its problems because it is best left to books and documentaries. The topic is just to extensive for this post. "Trump, as a Billionaire, and Romney, as a man with hundreds of millions of dollars, pays less (percentage wise) in tax than you" that isn't true by any stretch of the meaning. You still have taxes on goods and you still have taxes on the company transactions. Each pay check that goes out has fed tax and state and local tax taken out. Without trump those jobs and those taxes would not have been collected. around 30% of the cost of goods comes down to taxes. If he ever spends money there you go. "If you are willing to call all of the poor on welfare and healthcare moochers," no, all of the people that take in healthcare, and unemployment, and never work are moochers. The population of unemployed people is increasing on the number of people that go on unemployment and never look for another job is increasing. This group of people then birth more children to get even more money and they then teach these kids to live off this system. We need to take a step back and answer some major questions. Would you need these healthcare systems and unemployment if the economy was good and growing? If not then what caused it to go down hill? "By calling a man in need of emergency care a moocher, you are dooming his future." that is a problem that was created before this problem was created. This is getting complicated. When health insurance was created the hospital priced jumped up, and then people came in with no health insurance and couldn't pay so they increased the priced even more and now it is so astronomical that one stitch costs 200 dollars. 1 fucking stitch it is crazy and this is part of another problem all together. "history? A resume? Did he say he would take the healing back or repossess the man's legs" fallacious because you cannot equate the 2. 1 teaches the man or "changes his heart" or "saves him", and the other just gives him free money with no reason to act right, just more reason to act like a lazy shit. "Where is your compassion for those in need?" I believe people strive to live beyond what they need or should need. I am as close to a non-conformist as it gets. Although I am on mood stabilizers, but anyways.... people tend to see what someone else has and they think they need it or want it until they have it. When they have it they realize it isn't fun or good so they reach even higher and the same thing happens over and over. There is a clear thresh hold where your life is miserable, but at the same time there are happy homeless people. This view appears to be a communist perspective, but it isn't I assure you because I do not believe you need to restrict someones will to make everyone else happy because we can all be happy with basically nothing. The average citizen in the middle ages had less well everything than your average homeless person today.

  • Alda Lemke

    > Continued... Then the voice, and oh man I tell you I was shakin’ in my boots. This was it, it was the big cheese himself. God Almighty, like the one in the Bible. It was like listening to Niagra falls, the Nile, the Amazon and the ocean all at the same time but talking. It wasn’t English, but I could understand it anyhow. Like with other things I describe here to you, these words weren’t exactly like the words I’m using to talk to you. It was like each word was a thousand words, they just fit together different than when you or I speak. I just don’t know how to do it justice, but I’ll try. Also, I don’t know why but rather than calling this God or the Throne or whatever like the priests do, when I recall I always think I should call the source of the voice the Fountainhead. Some Rabbi once told me that was the literal meaning of Yaweh in the old Jewish texts anyhow, and it seems ok to me. The Fountainhead: “It was asked that you be allowed to make the world a better place. Have you done so?” I didn’t have a hat and I couldn’t stand because I already was standing. Also I found I was in the very center of this arena now, looking down because the light in front of me was just too bright to look into. “Yessir.” I replied. The Fountainhead: “Show me.” And so I did. I’m not rightly sure how I did, but I found I could walk through any part of the world. I showed how everyone had enough to eat, everyone had a job they liked, nobody cheated each other and the world ran like a smooth Chevrolet fresh from the factory. I was a bit proud of what I had done, I have to admit. The Fountainhead: “Now show me the future.” This surprised me a little bit because even though, as I already said, I could move through time I hadn’t really thought to go very far into the future. As instructed I went a few hundred years into the future. Not a whole lot had changed, but everything was still as neat and perfect as it had ever been. The Fountainhead: “Further.” And so we flew forward in time. For a thousand years all was well. Things changed a bit, but life was peaceful on my world. Then suddenly the world was in ruins. There was no life. None. The world was a blasted ruin. Moving more slowly, I stepped back in time five years at a time. It took a few tries, but finally I found it. Out of nowhere, an black armada of ships. I didn’t then, or now, know where they had come from. They were sleek, long and black. There were big ones and small ones. They just blanketed the earth with death from above, scorching everything to ash and dust in a few hours. The Fountainhead: “Do you understand?” But I didn’t. I didn’t understand why anyone in the universe would destroy. Me: “No. It isn’t right! You have the power to prevent the universe from being this way. We were happy!” The Fountainhead: “You are but a child. Even so, what depth of wisdom have you to question? What right of accomplishment do you bring for challenge? I was before your sun. I was before your galaxy.” I was a bit terrified by this. Not the kind of terrified you get when you’re about to die, no. There wasn’t threat or malice in anything being said. It was weight really. Somehow as it spoke I could feel the weight of trillions of years behind the words. I could feel just how tiny a fraction of time I had been a part of this universe. I tell you, I’ve never been more humbled. Me: “I’m sorry, I should not have responded like that. Please show me so that I can understand.” The Fountainhead: “Around you sit my children. I was the first, and I was alone. I made others of many kinds. Some are like you, but many are not. Each feels and thinks and believes in different ways. To make things all the same would destroy many upon many worlds, for they could not function in peace like yours. They could not find joy in your joy. I tried making children of my own hand, but this did not go well. They were copies of me, given knowledge by me, and we could not learn from each other because all our knowledge was of the same source. It was decided that each would go and make new worlds, and then we would come together and see what new things we had made and all of us would be more for it. And so I took the east and west and north and south and in and out and tied them together with then and here and what will be to make matter, so that all would be recorded by causation in a shared infinite universe. Many of my children take after me and desire order and simplicity, but some do not. Some find joy in conflict and in the struggle to achieve. Who shall judge between us? Who shall say that one is good and the other evil? I cannot, for I came first and all else came from my hand. And so we made your world and your people. You are made of contradictions. You love both peace and war, you are ruled by passion and reason. You are driven by sex, and hate, and greed but also compassion and love and a sense of justice. But you are young, fragile, and some of my children would not see you become powerful. It is only in the hottest fire that steel can be tempered or diamonds form, and if you find peace then you will not strive to become more for you will be happy. And so you must not be at peace, but must know war. You must struggle and fight amongst yourselves and learn how to create your own kind of peace and governance. Only then will you be ready for those that come to destroy your world.” I don’t know if it was moments or years later, but I found myself back in the line. I had brought something else back with me. I gave my bread to the woman and boy and it wasn’t for some reward in heaven or for some feeling of righteousness. It was because I knew, deep inside, what I wanted the future to be like now. I got around to reading the old books and the bible, and I couldn’t help but realize there was a whole lot about space and other worlds and stuff in there. Funny how the Catholics and fire-and-brimstone preachers never seemed to see it, opting instead to see hell and judgement. When the Japs bombed Perl Harbor I was already in the navy. I signed up as soon as it looked like there was gonna be war. I don’t know much, but I know what I want the future of man to be now. It can’t be what the eugenics guys are going for. It can’t be all military or control with no spirit. It’s gotta be a mixture of what makes us human: our individuality, our passion, our sense of fairness, our reason and our pride… those things are what will make us strong enough to face the future.

  • Ron Zulauf

    **Oops, didn't remember that the character was supposed to be old enough to have a family of his/her own, not changing everything now, sorry** It's like the day I found the documentation of my family tree is etched into my mind. My grandfather had just died, and I was tidying up in his study when one folder fell out of my arms and landed on the floor with a sharp noise. The landing had made it open, and a sheet of paper had partly folded out to reveal a large family-tree that had clearly been updated several times over the years. With gentle movements, I unfolded it completely. The paper was old, but even so, the first five generations were in the same ink, and seemed to have been copied off and older document. I was curious as to why my grandfather would have a document like this, and reading the names downwards I saw that it was our family. Not so surprising, perhaps, but nobody had ever mentioned an interest in heritage to me. I reached my parents, who were linked together as a married couple, but something was written over the bond in a tight hand. I leaned forward and squinted at the small print. *U.A., see app. 10* U.A.? app. 10? Could that be "appendix"? What family tree has appendixes, I thought to myself, but my confusion was overtaken by a sharp shock as I saw the line from them BRANCH OUT. I was there, as expected, but there was another name next to mine. *Leanne U.S.* U.S? Does that mean she lives in the US? There were years of birth and death for every name, and Leanne had only a year of birth. I looked at it to see if a logical explanation presented itself, maybe she was born when my parents were very young, and was estranged before I was born? But no, she is just six years older than me! How could I have a six years older sister that I couldn't remember at 17? The folder was marked *Project Evolution*. I checked all the folders, and found another marked the same. Both folders went into my backpack, and I would study them intently for a long time to come. When studying them in my room, it didn't take me long to note that most names had small letters following them. "U.S" was a rather common one, as was simply "S", and a few had "R". It took me a little longer to note that only one that was marked "U.S" had a child, and they were both aggressively crossed out, and no father was given. The ones marked "R" typically had a lot of children. Only my father had no letters after his name, instead he had a question-mark. My sister was what intrigued me the most - quite naturally. Some would perhaps have asked their parents about this, but I figured that if they had kept me from knowing about her for so long, asking now could lead to nothing good. First, I googled "Leanne Chesterton", to no avail. None of the many hits related to anybody who could possibly be my sister. I searched news records and the like, and found nothing. After some furious googling, I turned to the folders from my grandfathers study. But despite searching page after page, I could not find her name mentioned any other place. In the end, I decided to take break, and read the appendix regarding my parents. I leafed through the pages until I found appendix 10, and read the following, in my grandfathers handwriting: *Jane Henderson insisted on marrying Thomas Chesterton, despite him not being able to provide lineage and medical history further back than two generations, and even there not having enough detail.* Seeing this threw a light on the chilliness between my parents, especially my father, and my grandfather. I was baffled to see this strange passage written in my own dear Poppa's hand. Medical history? Lineage? What are we, pedigree dogs? In a slightly different ink, the text continued: *Their union bore an Unsuitable, a mentally ill girl, within its first five years. The spawn has been put into a suitable institution, and will undergo preventative measures when old enough.* An Unsuitable? Suddenly, the letters "U.S" after Leanne's name sprung into my mind - UnSuitable... "Spawn", what a crude word to use for a child just because of a disease! It felt like taking a shower in droplets of ice when the thought "What does 'preventative measures' mean?" entered my mind. Considering the tone of the appendix, I hardly believed it to mean having a personal assistant assigned. Again in a different ink, and this time it was slightly visible that my grandfather had aged. The lines were not as straight anymore, and a few places, his hand seemed to have trembled. *Their next child is more promising, a young boy of five. He is showing great promise, already reading, and physically fit.* I knew this had to be me. Poppa was always very proud that he had been able to teach me to read before I started school, and he would talk incessantly about how "almost nothing was required of me, Marcus just needed to be shown the letters and encouraged a little, and he would be telling me all about those books of his!". He would also make me show people how strong and fast I was. Like most children, I would do so with a huge smile on my face, proud to be the object of his pride. The last note was difficult to read, and my grandfather's hand had definitively trembled while holding the pen: *The boy shows great promise, while the girl will never be suitable. A transfer has been initiated.* Again, I had a head full of questions. Whatever did a transfer mean? Many of my questions remained unanswered for another year, until one day my mother sat me down in the living-room and told me we needed to talk. My father had just left the room, visibly angry and upset. My mother's face looked almost nervous, and a few thin lines where starting to show on her normally so youthful face. For the first time, I noticed a few gray hairs in her copper-coloured curls. "You are becoming a grown man..." she began, looking down into the carpet. I remember thinking she was going to tell me all about the 'birds and the bees', and was just going to let her know that we had been taught that in school, thank you very much, when she started again: "and I assume you have already been in love a few times. However, our family takes certain... precautions when it comes to marriage." Marriage? My first thought was a confused exclamation, but then, I though of the folders under my bed. I looked up and met her blue-gray gaze. "I... I'm not thinking about getting engaged for a long time, mom," was all I could think to answer, and it was certainly true! **To be continued**

  • Miller Funk

    Yeah, a -lot- of us go hardline from "supernatural/spiritual" to "Yeah uhh, can you prove any of your beliefs are true? Can you demonstrate them repeatedly in front of me?" For me, it's in -very- large part because of how huge of a betrayal it felt like. I tend to offend a lot of people because I'm pretty honest about how I see things, and often blunt, because if I'm wrong, I want someone to shove it in my face instead of tip-toeing around to spare my feelings. That being said, Christianity -does- just stomp all over sexuality and relationships, -especially- for women, and -especially- for poly/bi/anything not man+woman married. Even then, it messes with it because you literally have someone watching your thoughts to see if you commit heart adultery. BUT! The bright side of me being the kind to go crazy with research is that I've got an arsenal of dealing with the "what if" problem, some of which I haven't seen anywhere else before, which make me like... happy. So here's a quick list. There are apologetics to some of these, some have no refutation aside from an appeal to ignorance/incredulity. For the ones with apologetics, chances are pretty high I already know the counter-apologetic if you need more. Cuz I memorized this stuff like I memorized scripture for the "what if" panic attacks. I wanted to make 100% certain I was making the right decision. ANYWAY! Old Testament: How many legs does a locust have? 4 according to God. 6 According to the OT. How many kids did Michal have? Did she die childless due to a curse, or did she have 5 sons? (this one kinda cross blends with NT, but) Has no one heard God's voice, or did all of Israel hear and and beg for him to stop speaking because it was so scary? Look at the troop numbers in Chronicles and Kings. Umm, there's some genealogy stuff I can't remember in the OT. Technically, David's grandma wasn't supposed to be allowed to join Israel, iirc. u/Private_Mandella You know what I'm talking about? I think it's cuz she was a moabite. OH How many brothers did David have? NT Stuff: Luke vs Matthew (they have a lot of problems agreeing) How many donkeys did Jesus ride during the triumphal entry? (This one is the funniest to me, especially if you study the Septuagint and Greek and realize Matt's an idiot.) Where did he get them from? What's his genealogy? Matt and Luke do -not- agree, and the apologetic of "well -one- is obviously Mary" is refuted by throwing "all scripture is God breathed" and "do not add to the words of the LORD, lest you be reproved, and found a liar." And here's a -really- big one. What year was Jesus born? According to Josephus, Herod the Great (the one who ordered the mass slaughter of infants) died in 4 BCE. This matters because Quirinius did not become governor of Syria until 6 AD, which Luke (iirc) very specifically dates as the time of the census. So uhh... how did Herod kill the innocents 10 years after his death? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Massacre_of_the_Innocents Good to read up on, tbh. Okay, now for my pride and joy: Paul lies about how he received the Gospel. He admits to prosecuting Christians, interrogating them (iirc,) and was there for the stoning of Stephen. You're going to tell me that he, one of the greatest early enemies of the church, never once heard the Gospel from the mouths of men? That it wasn't until after Damascus that he heard it? Christian apologist would probably say he heard it but didn't understand or some bs, but he makes it very clear it wasn't something he was told by anyone, that he received it through divine revelation. There's also a contradiction on Damascus road between what was seen and heard between the accounts, but I don't remember it. Okay, so OT has errors, Gospels have errors. But what about Mark? John? Mark has the extended ending that's -still- in many Bibles where it says if you have faith you can drink poison. Look up how many people have died because they believed this passage. It was a later addition, and a rather malicious one at that. Which means the Bible isn't "perfectly preserved", or at least Mark isn't. Which leaves one Gospel standing, with almost the entire NT broken. John. The most beautiful one to a lot of people. It also has the woman caught in adultery story. Which was added later. None of the early church fathers mention it. Origen did a verse-by-verse commentary on John, and wrote the Hexapla (essentially 6 language version of the Bible, fascinating but mostly missing.) This man cared so much about scripture that he compiled 6 different versions of it. This is before the printing press. That means all those books, all that knowledge, and all that time he spent -writing- that shit down means he -knew- the Bible. But the woman in adultery story (and several other verses in John, iirc)? Nowhere to be found for a while. There's also stuff like the Johannine Comma (idr how to spell it), which was directly added to the first epistle of John sometime around the 9th century. It's the only verse that directly supports the trinity. So now we've shown that the Bible has been edited and tampered with. All the Johns die. Peter and Jude reference Enoch, which is noncanonical. And if it is canonical, that means God left Enoch out of the canon while preserving it. And Enoch is a fucking crazy book. Huge, too. 5 volumes. I'll stop there. One of the best ways to kick out the "what ifs" is to actually read the Bible, cover to cover, and study it. Plus, you'll find out fun facts people omit, like YHWH threatening to make women eat their children while hiding the corpses so they don't have to share them in Deut and Ezek, and actually going through with it by Lamentations. Or Uzziah being killed for touching the Ark of the Covenant because he was trying to keep it from tipping over. Or Jephthah essentially being a reverse version of Abraham, where God -doesn't- stop him burning his daughter alive. And on and on and on. Hope that helps.

  • Modesta Pagac

    > Mormons are Christians. Nope. Doctrines of the LDS Church: 1. The Bible has many errors, changes, and omissions and must be understood using the Mormon scriptures as explained by the LDS Church’s prophets. According to Mormon belief as taught originally by founder Joseph Smith, the Bible is unreliable and incomplete, so that the Bible must be supplemented and corrected by the LDS scriptures. This alone makes for a thousand contradictions between the Mormon doctrine and the Christian one. For example, compare the [Genesis 1:1-7](https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Genesis+1%3A1-7&version=ESV) to [Abraham 4:1-5](https://www.lds.org/scriptures/pgp/abr/4.1-5?lang=eng). Not to mention they have extra 3 books (the book of Mormon, the doctrine and covenants, the pearl of great price) as a part of their scriptures. 2. God the Father was once a man like us but is now God, our Heavenly Father. In Mormon doctrine, God the Father was once a man like us—a mortal being—and became God by going through a process or progression that culminated in his becoming exalted to Godhood. He has a physical body and cannot in his own person be omnipresent. However, as God, he is omniscient and omnipotent. But this is impossible, since he can not be omnipotent if he is not omnipresent and he can not be omniscient if he is not omnipotent. Ridiculous, a spit in the face to the teachings of the Early Christian Church and its theologians and followers who often spilled their blood and gave their lives for this. Furthermore, this straight out contradicts the Scripture, which teaches that God is eternal: [Psalm 90:2](https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Psalm%2090:2), [Psalm 93:2](http://biblehub.com/psalms/93-2.htm), [1Tim 1:1-17](https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Timothy+1:17) Moreover, God has no physical body: [John 4:24](http://biblehub.com/john/4-24.htm) 3. According to Mormon doctrine Jesus, all human beings, all angels, and Lucifer (Satan) and the demons were all spirit children of our Heavenly Father and heavenly mother. The relation of the Holy Ghost (their preferred term for the Holy Spirit) to this heavenly family is generally unstated. Jesus Christ was, before becoming a mortal on earth, Heavenly Father’s firstborn spirit son and was known as Jehovah, while Heavenly Father was known as Elohim. 4. Mormon doctrine rejects the classic Christian doctrine of the Trinity, according to which there is one God who exists eternally as three inseparable yet distinct persons, the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Instead, Mormon doctrine teaches that the three are separate personages who became Gods at different times and have separate bodies. 5. Joseph Smith is the Prophet of the Restoration, who did more for mankind’s salvation than anyone besides Jesus Christ. A "prophet" who died in a gunfight whilst being in prison. Sure. God's chosen man, I tell ya! 6. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the only true church, and its priesthood and ordinances are necessary for entrance into God’s presence in the celestial kingdom. One goes to one of the 4 kingdoms in the afterlife: celestial, terrestrial, telestial or outer darkness Nice fairytale. Mormon doctrine maintains that baptism, to be valid, must be performed by a man holding the LDS priesthood authority; thus, all non-Mormon baptisms are invalid. Since baptism is prerequisite to receiving the “gift of the Holy Ghost,” this means that non-Mormons cannot receive this gift and consequently cannot receive spiritual gifts. Non-Mormons also lack the true, full, or restored gospel and are not authorized to preach the gospel. Despite these claims about non-Mormon believers in Jesus, Mormons today acknowledge that such non-Mormon believers are Christians—and take offense when non-Mormons refuse to acknowledge them as Christians. 7. Jesus Christ organized this world with the help of others, under the direction of Heavenly Father and the Council of the Gods; his helpers included Adam and perhaps Joseph Smith. Council of the Gods. Heh... [Isaiah 45:5](http://biblehub.com/isaiah/45-5.htm), [Isaiah 41:13](http://biblehub.com/isaiah/41-13.htm), [Matthew 4:10](http://biblehub.com/matthew/4-10.htm),... 8. Faithful Mormons may become Gods, meaning that they can become all-powerful beings that make and rule their own worlds. Mormon belief holds out the ideal that human beings, who were God’s literal spirit children in heaven, may become like their Heavenly Father in every way—that is, that they may become Gods. This transformation, called exaltation, means becoming all-powerful beings who can make and rule their own worlds just as Heavenly Father made and rules this world. This is a completely alien teaching that has nothing to do with the Judeo-Christian thought! . They worship wrong and corrupted teachings. They DO NOT follow the teachings Jesus Christ gave us through Scriptures and hence are not Christians. Just because they say they believe in Christ, that does not make them Christians. Matthew 7:15-17 (“Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. 16By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? 17Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit.) Observe the fruits they bear as I have and you will notice they do not follow the teachings of Jesus Christ, the Early Christian Church, the Ecumenical councils, even Scripture!

  • Graciela Reichel

    So you've mentioned three points here: 1) Forced conversation about the patriachy 2) Whether or not you're a feminist 3) Him watching videos that make fun of people Like, I said before, if you feel you want to end things with him then I really am not trying to say you should do things one way or the other, that is totally your call. However, if you're looking for general advice on how things can be resolved with him or in the future. 1) I think that argument is a relatively normal example of a fight many couples have. It's about conflict resolution. Marriage counselling books sometimes talk about how regularly in a conflict one person is a "rhino" who likes just fighting through a disagreement and the other is a "hedgehog" who will want to avoid a conflict but usually resort to being passive aggressive. Men and women don't fit into one category, I know relationships where the women is more of a rhino and others where they are hedgehogs and this distinction exists outside of sexual relationships. Brene Brown is a counsellor that talks a great deal about the importance of clear boundaries in a relationships and when boundaries are crossed it leads to resentment. The example you've given of the patriachy argument is an almost textbook example of issues to do with clear understandings of boundaries and enforcing them and a differing approach to conflict resolution. However if you decide to end it with this person this is likely to come up again. Next time the fight might be about children and what kind of school they should go to, maybe its about your opinion of a relative one of you finds annoying, maybe its about the colour of the walls that you want to paint. Its also very normal for someone to care about something and the other to not and the mere fact the person doesn't care (but won't submit) will make the other person angry. I think trying to frame that fight in terms of healthy boundaries and getting to a place where you have, as a couple, better conflict resolution is more likely to result in something you can move forward with. ------ 2) Whether or not you are a feminist. Some people here have suggested you are being "gaslighted" here. That is an inherent sign of abuse when someone tells you your own subjective experience is wrong. I don't know your situation fully and so I can't tell but I think perhaps those other people have got it wrong. There is a difference between the disagreement of how YOU feel and a disagreement about what a word means. One is internal to you and one is external. If you say "I am a feminist and think women should be equal" and then he says "No you're not a feminist, you hate equality and you hate all women", I think that is closer to gaslighting. If you say "I get really sad when you belittle others" and he replies "No you LOVE it when you see people being belittled", That is gas lighting. He is disagreeing with your own subjective attitude towards things. However here it appears that you and him just disagree with what the word "feminist" means. I think its very important in a relationship to be able to disagree on things like this as long as you both fully understand that you disagree. I think this fits in with "healthy boundaries". It appears you're not ok with his definition of feminism that says "Feminists are morons almost by definition" either. Somehow I would suggest for you to move on you need to be both in a place where you are ok and fully understand that you both mean something different by that word. Again, I think this is something that would be worth going through with a counsellor. You need to focus on you, your feelings and how it impacts your relationship. Trying to argue once and for all the "true definition of feminism" is unlikely to be solved by you to. But the way it makes you feel when he doesn't get that you think of feminism differently to him, matters and if you and him can't find a shared dialogue to discuss these things (such as saying "ok, I see that you think feminists are morons, I'm not one of those "moron feminists" I'm a different kind of feminist a "Me-feminist" can to accept that I see things differently to you?") then it will cause resentment. 3) Finally the belittling. Personally I hate this kind of thing too, I had a girlfriend that did it quite a lot although she didn't mean to. I think a lot of people are very insecure and find it makes them feel better about themselves if they can look down on the "stupidity" of others and laugh at them. The problem I have with this, apart from the nastiness, is that usually it hurts the person doing it. When she used to laugh at someone else's stupidity it made "Being stupid a bad thing" which meant she would get REALLY upset if anyone made her feel stupid. The reality is that everyone sometimes says or does stupid things. We don't need to feel bad and we don't need to laugh at others. However this thing again is something where you will in all of your life have people that do things that you find distastful. You need to decide for yourself if you can find a way of living with it, or is the 10 years worth ending because he does some things you disagree with? --------- Upon reflection, I'll probably stop posting unless you really want me to. It appears to me like you have almost already made up your mind with what you want to do and you're coming here looking for some kind of justification for a decision you've already made. You don't need that justification. You haven't married him yet and so you don't owe him life time loyalty. If you don't want to marry him then that is up to you, don't. From what you've said it appears that you have many many issues you've built up over the years that have been unresolved. You talk like someone who is in a relationship that makes you very sad. However from the way you talk it looks like your issues run deeper then politics, alt-right or TRP. I think discussion about that is a red herring.

  • Orval Mayer

    Oh come on, there's nothing wrong with interspecies love like say if a dog person on this show has a romantic relationship with a human man like a sexy collie anthro woman who marries a human man and has anthro pup babies. When i was a kid 30 years ago watching Beauty and the Beast (with Linda Hamilton/Ron Perlman as i had a crush on Linda at the time as a kid) with Catherine/Vincent, Madison/Alan in Splash, The Littlest Tramp episode of New Adventures of Mighty Mouse (the one episode with the lovely blonde mouse woman who got harassed by a bullying rich human man then Mighty Mouse taught him a lesson then she forgave him as he forgave her them they got married at the end plus one of my fave episodes), Kit Mambo and Rene on Animalympics, and Star Trek Trek TNG really opened my mind to love in movies/shows/animation that love doesn't have to be the same species/race of Being as love isn't by appearances. Then later with comics even Marvel on Hepzbiah/Corsair in Guardians of the Galaxy comics, Alien Nation, some Sci-fi and fantasy movies/shows/books, Disney's Beauty and the Beast, X-Men's Beauty and the Beast episode, Gargoyles, Sonic The Hedgehog's Sonic/Sally in the comics/show plus many more etc. all did the same. Now recent examples of interspecies or inter-Being love has been on Regular Show with Margaret's parents one being a human man and one being a humanoid Bird woman and Doctor Who who has an alien lizard woman who is a lesbian married to a human woman and both couples are inspiring no doubt as you don't have to be the same race or Species to fall in love and both are Beings no doubt, And you know something? I am very proud to see that fact in Margaret's parents and Vastra and Jenny. It's absolutely inspiring to see that appearances means nothing to Frank and his wife with Vastra and Jenny and Rigby/Eillen whom one is a raccoon person and one a mole person. They love each other for who they are, not what they are, same for the parents of the Wolf Children. The same thing applies to Marvel lovers like Howard The Duck and Beverly Switzler (interdimensional Duck being and human woman), Corsair/Hepziabah (Cyclop's human dad who is a space pirate having a romantic affair with an alien skunk furry cat-woman), Queen Lilandra/Charles Xavier (mutant man and alien bird woman who's race evolved from a species of bird) etc. Take for example, Minerva Mink and a human man in a story series i'm reading for example as i mean both are sapient mammal beings who are consenting adults as she is a humanoid mink woman with parts/all like a human's even breasts underneath the fur/tail/ears with all that plus high intelligence/can think/similar DNA like a human's and all even for romantic or sexual relationships with the man as they love each other for who they are and not what they are and can get married in their world and produce children even half-mink person half-human hybrids or if the children end up the same species/race as the mother. Plus Vastra is an alien reptile lesbian woman on Doctor Who who is married to a human woman i am a furry myself and very supportive of interspecies or rather inter-being couples/romance in stories even comics/games/animation/sci-fi fantasy books & movies & TV shows, video games, fanfiction etc. but only if it involves a humanoid being, a sapient or sentient being, magical creature being (ala mermaid or gargoyle or vampire or elf etc.), alien being or mutant being which is ok because they can consent but never to a 4 legged regular feral non-evolved non-humanoid non-sapient animal creature like an ordinary feral animal like say an ordinary regular 4 legged Labordor retreiver getting screwed by a human man for example as that would be beastality since it's a thing that cannot think or consent or have feelings especially romanatic like a Being would and it isn't a Being who has same structures/body build/nor humanoid looking like any Being in general is. Afterall the word "people" just don't mean just human but Beings in general like from other worlds and stuff as it's alright to love a different Being in Sci-fi/fantasy, comics and all that. As i see in Sci-fi/fantasy that inter-species or rather inter-Being love is an allegory for interracial or same-sex love in a way. There's also Hellboy and Liz in the comics/movies, The Warden in Superjail who romanced a lovely anthro alligator woman and had kids with her, Preston and Carola in Tales from the Darkside the Movie, Charlene and Vinnie on Biker Mice from Mars, TankGirl and Booga in Tankgirl comics (Mutant kangaroo man and human woman), InuYasha and Kagome, Mass Effect which has alien races with different alien races even romancing to human beings, Minerva Mink and a human lover in a story series, Handy Smurf and a mermaid in some Smurf episodes, Farscape alien beings with different races/species of alien Beings even to humans, Batman and Cheetah on Justice League, Nick and Judy on Zootopia, Aragon and Arwen (human and elf), Duckman who romanced with different mammal anthro beings/different bird people/even human ladies on the show and so much more. It's like Prince Lir in The Last Unicorn (Anyone here seen that movie or read Peter S Beagle's excellent fantasy classic novel from 1968) once said when he was told about the lovely gal Lady Amalthea's secret since she is the gal that Lir had been courting/dating/romancing is really a humanized unicorn "Unicorn, mermaid, sorceress, gorgon, lamia, gargoyle, vampire, genie, werewolf, elf...no name you could give her would surprise or frighten me, i love whom i love" and it's one of my fave quotes and you know what he meant by his quote?

  • Lowell Gerhold

    Your wife is depressed to a level that requires professional help. She can barely function as a person, much less as an adult or parent. She pulls this shit because she gets attention from you - even if it is negative attention. You buy into it. This is just like teenagers who act out and get into trouble all the time. It is how they get attention. This does not mean she actively knows why she is doing it. I think she is too depressed to be able to self-analyze why she acts the way she does. You really can't blame her at this point. However, you DO need to take charge of this situation immediately. First, stop being her emotional tampon and trying to setup a system so that she can "manage the day" or whatever. She is not there. She has reached her breaking point where even waking up in the morning is cause for a mental breakdown that devolves into physically hitting things and breaking objects. Essentially, something in her life is massively wrong. It may be that she hates you. It may be that she hates being a mother. It may be that she hates what she is doing with her life. I don't know what it is. I'll give you an example: In the case of the latter, she may feel she is obligated to raise the kids as a SAHM despite absolutely hating it and feeling like she is trapped or throwing her life away. What happens is the lessons and stories we learn from earlier parts of our lives direct our choices, even though it might not be what we really want. In this made up scenario, an example would be that your wife's mother was a SAHM who raised her and always spoke of how virtuous it was to raise your kids. So your wife would have that life lesson driving her to consistently want to stay at home or else feel she is failing as a human being, but on the other hand she might totally hate what she is doing. Here's the thing: Until she admits and actually addresses whatever her problem is with real action, there is no moving forward because she will just hate herself. This is why you get all the self-pity stuff like "I'm a failure as a mother" - aside from seeking attention and validation from you, she is actively admitting she loathes who she is. Some people don't want to face it or address it, and instead keep being self-destructive or just take drugs to numb the pain and live years like an emotional zombie. And it is hard to change things in your life that are so big that they can depress you this much. Look at how hard it is to get into MRP when you're a depressed dadbod; yes, a lot of guys turn it around over the course of months or years, but it's fucking HARD even with a whole internet forum of guys giving advice and tough support. Turning into someone who actually likes and respects themselves when you're that depressed requires a shit ton of effort and going through/doing hard shit (physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually), and it will be the case for your wife as well. So this is where "being an oak" comes in - note this is different than being an emotional tampon. The point is you absolutely need a professional to help reconcile these kinds of issues. And it may not turn out how you like. It might be a divorce if the issue is she hates being with you. Of course, as others have said, the more you focus on yourself and becoming awesome, the more you will likely help or outright solve this issue. And I get that you want to make sure the kids are OK as mentioned in one of your comments, and so you keep getting involved in this situation. And that's fair. So how about this: if you get involved, start taking ownership and leadership in this situation rather than trying to appease her. Stop listening to her problems and making her food when she pulls the fetal position crap. Stop demanding to know if your kids are ok with her. She sees what your buttons are and then pushes them more to get even more attention - you are playing right into it with how you currently act. Instead, you need to put your foot down. Right now, your wife is not mentally healthy enough to take care of the kids. No one would agree with the idea that your wife is capable at this time given the stories you are providing. You need to first get your kids into daycare. This can even be just a "temporary measure" if it makes her feel better so that she can get a break for a few weeks/months and get back to a better, happier, healthier state. Second, we need to jump straight to going back to a therapist and possibly even medication. Forget exercise as a step; your wife can't fucking make it two days without breaking shit. If she was seeing her old therapist more than a few months and hasn't identified why she is so fucking miserable, then it is time to get a new therapist. You want someone who is going to hold her accountable to identify the issue and start taking action on it. She should be actively working on stuff even away from the therapist - I'm not saying she should have weekly homework or otherwise suck they as a therapist, but they should definitely be making recommendations on books, workbooks, questions to consider, things to discuss with you, etc. You have to take control of yourself and this situation. You're definitely doing better than a toxic, shitty husband who is not handling his shit, but your efforts are misguided because you are too caught up emotionally in this situation with her. You have got to detach and take a look at the facts on paper. Your wife needs help. Your kids should not be around her all day in her current state. Then, make a plan that is in the best interests of you, your wife, and your children, and execute it without remorse no matter how hard it is. In the short term your wife may resent you for it, but **if she gets better** then in the long run (regardless of how things go with you and her) she'll respect you for taking the right actions to protect your family.

  • Jessy Bednar

    This is absolutely heartbreaking to read. I'm so sorry you and your wife had to go through this. I can't believe there are still places in the world where parents will shun their children for not believing as they do, where communities will abandon their most needful, or callously abuse their need to press their agenda. And I can't believe people are still brought up to believe that there is an actual hell, and that there is a genuine chance of going there. To me, religion, or more succinctly 'belief' isn't something you decide, it's just what you think is true, what you believe in the most basic sense. I can't be a christian because I don't believe in Christianity, not any of it, it doesn't make sense to me and it never has (even when I was a child I brushed the thought aside, hoping there were answers I'd understand when I got older, but that's just not the case). There is no pleading or forcing or goading or threatening or torturing, or even desire on my own part that can change this for me. I suspect it was the same for your wife. A deeply ingrained sense of personal honesty about what we consider to be the truth. Trying to emotionally blackmail someone into something they are unable to do honestly is incredibly cruel. A person can pretend, go through the motions, but unless they actually think it's true, it's meaningless. I get being afraid of hell, if you've been convinced of it since infancy, I get being afraid for others and desperately hoping they'll do what ever it takes so you don't have to think of them going there. But it's not real, it's not even plausibly made up. I make room for some agnosticism in my atheism, I recognize that while I don't think I'm wrong, it's still possible that I am. If it turns out there is a god of some sort, I'll be surprised, but I won't have an aneurism trying to comprehend that I was wrong. But Hell, the specific Judeo-Christian God in our modern culture? That I can say with absolute certainty is not real. It's a mish mash of different legends and proto-religions, passed down over generations, argued in conventions and revised, books added and left out, influenced by artists and writers in the public imagination, simplified to explain to the illiterate commoners of the middle ages. (both Satan and Mary Magdalen are likely several different individuals combined from different stories of the bible into single characters to make the story simpler). It is a cultural phenomenon to explain the world in a pre-scientific world, to provide people with commonality and community, and to control them. It is in my view not plausible that the current image of God is anywhere close to anything that might be real. Some sort of God, maybe even some proto-image of what is now described as the christian god, it's not impossible (although I don't think it likely). All that said, you are hurting right now and you are angry. That is often the first step in becoming non-religious. The shock of seeing the plain implausibility of it can push one to consider things one never did before. Just like fear can lead some non-believers to convince themselves to believe. In the end, it's about what you think is true. You can work in certain directions, you can try to convince yourself, but it's still something deeper. If you're angry at God, that means you still believe in him. I realize it's a christian cliché to think atheists are angry at God, but that's not the case...it sometimes describes the initial step, but that's not what disbelief is really, even if it can lead you there. I don't recommend making huge life decisions when in emotional turmoil. So just like I don't like it when churches target grieving widows/widowers for proselytizing, I would urge you to not decide where you are going in a hurry. Please don't take my description of my views as trying to convince you...I do hope to convince you that there is no Hell, but I would not want to rob you of a belief in God (in some form) if you still want it (even presuming I had such powers of persuasion, which I think is clear by now, I do not) My advice is that the universe is what it is, what we would like it to be or would wish it to be doesn't change anything. The only real question when it comes to what you believe is 'what do you think is true?' The atheist viewpoint, which I'm aware you didn't come here for (sorry), may sound harsh. Consider that to some people, while they may fear eternity in Hell, it is still in some lonely and deep corner of their minds still preferable to the notion of not existing. The fear of hell is visceral and palpable, but the fear of true death is an existential dread, a cold and consuming fear (if you let it be). It is something every atheist must make their peace with, one way or another. Many never do, and I'll admit it still gives me trouble now and again. But, the world is what it is, no matter what we want it do be. You seem like a good person, and your wife seems like an incredibly strong and decent person. I offer you my sincere condolences. I know this turned into a ramble a long time ago. I hope that you recover in time from this heartbreak, and that you will have a fuller sense of your own thoughts, beliefs and self. If you stay with Christianity, I hope it will be a more considered, more tested version, with more room for those who don't share it. If you wind up moving away from it, I would caution you that it's very frightening at first and requires a lot of thought and soul searching. Finding out how to anchor your morals on secular ideas and ideology without what feels like the inarguable bedrock of a higher power can be troublesome, but is very possible and in the end, more meaningful in my view. We are each on our own journey, but I hope I have been some measure of helpful on yours.

  • Veda Greenholt

    I 100% believe that neither Hermione or Ginny give a damn about gender roles, but because they have two pretty different personalities, I picture them embracing feminism in very different ways. Ginny is the type that, if someone was suggest to her that she was different or inferior to a man in any way at all, would be ready for a fight. We see a bit of that in HBP, as she shoots down the idea of her brothers needing to protect her from other men. If someone made a crude or unwanted sexual remark to her, I imagine that growing up as the only girl with six older brothers, she has a comeback and a jinx on retainer. I can't imagine her brothers ever being *terrible* to her because she's a girl, but I'm sure there was a good deal of teasing from Fred, Ron, and George, and she learned how to not only shut that shit down early, she learned how to keep up. I absolutely believe that Ginny is very comfortable and open about her sexuality, and can picture her as the kind of girl to bring up sex and aspects of her sex life in regular conversation without batting an eye. After all, when you grow up with six brothers, privacy and personal space/conversation goes out the window. This is just Ginny's personality that we see - brash, scrappy, and while I wouldn't go so far as to call her a tomboy, she definitely can keep up with the boys. So, given all that, one might say it doesn't make sense for Ginny to give up her last name or concede the names of her children to Harry. I read a comment or post on this sub not too long ago, and it was put perfectly - Ginny has (after the war) five other siblings to "carry on" the Weasley name. Harry, on the other hand, has zero family. By taking the name Potter, Ginny is helping him start a new family and a new part of his life, because she loves him. While she may have lost her brother, Ginny didn't experience half the lost that Harry has over the course of his life. Albus Severus may be terrible (for a number of reasons) and Lily Luna may sound kind of dumb, but I can imagine that starting the Potter family was a very emotional moment for Harry, and those names really meant a lot to him - I imagine that Ginny conceded out of love and probably has some nick names for the kids. And if anyone has something to say about that, they can answer to her just as well. Hermione on the other hand, isn't as confrontational as Ginny, and seems to be concerned with being a bit more "proper". I definitely don't get the idea that girls have to act like X and boys have to act like Y, but it seems that Hermione was raised in a different way from Ginny. She was probably told by her parents not to cuss, don't say inappropriate things, etc, like most little girls are. The only difference being, as an only child, Hermione didn't have several naughty brothers doing the exact opposite around her. She probably learned about sex and sexuality from - of course - books, and as she had no older siblings or close female friends, never had the right outlet to talk about those kinds of things. So she gets embarrassed because it isn't normalized for her, fumbles through it awkwardly with Ron, but grows comfortable with herself as she stays with Ron. She sure doesn't bring up her sex life unprompted though, and even then, it takes a lot of prodding and nagging to get details out of her. OP, you bring up that Hermione thinks that Ron should have been the one to ask her out, but I never saw it that way. It's been a while since I've read HBP so if I'm wrong, feel free to correct me. But I always saw their situation as having crushes on each other without realizing that they had crushes on each other, Hermione being hurt and indignant that Ron just couldn't read her mind and know she liked him, and knowing that's illogical but *still*. Again, she doesn't know how to talk about these things or who to go to, so she bottles her feelings up and faces questions about them with bursts of embarrassment and emotion. Moving away from sexual agency, growing up and having ties in the muggle world, which has more long standing and prominent gender roles than the wizarding world, Hermione is aware of the roles and expectations of men vs. women, but has absolutely zero time for it. Hermione is exceptionally well read and educated, and knows that feminism is having the choice to pursue whatever kind of lifestyle you want. Ginny, on the other hand, seems more like the type to suggest that following traditional gender norms is a violation of feminism and sees herself as above that, but even this is questionable, considering that her mom is the most badass housewife that ever lived. So let's say that Ginny would be the type to push girls to fulfill their true potential, whereas Hermione understands that being happy is what's important, even if it isn't as glamorous. Very fun ideas to think about!!

  • Ernestine Halvorson

    Platform 9 ¾ was an oddity to Alivan. It wasn’t that it was magical, that didn’t stand out at all in the life of a young wizard. The boy was simply left wondering where Platform 91/2 was, there didn’t seem to be another pillar to leap through, but he figured there needed to be other wizarding trains. The platform itself was abuzz with the start of a new year. Alivan’s journey to Diagon Alley had been quick after the acquisition of 5 wands. Wands were expensive, and between his sticks and his books the young wizards had cut through Mum’s pocket change. He was now sitting on a bench of Platform 9 ¾ knowing that the rest of his schooling equipment was going to be shipped to him in the coming days. At least he’d be getting mail. Everyone seemed very excited to start school and Alivan wasn’t quite certain why. All of the Witches and Wizards had something to look forward to, either wonder or stories from their parents; Alivan had neither, the boy’s parents had been scarce about the details of Hogwarts seeing as they though he might have been a squib. There was no need to torture the boy if he couldn’t really use the magic. “John!” Maeve called out to an old friend as she jumped off the bench beside Alivan. The witch skipped over to a man on the platform who was tucked into an ill-fitting blazer with a young girl pulling at his side. “Oh my God it’s been so long!” she continued as Alivan got up to follow her. “Maeve is that you?” John asked and held out a hand. Alivan’s mother skipped the polite introduction and leapt into a hug with John. “I didn’t think you were coming this year.” “I’m dropping off Alivan,” she said as she straightened herself out. “He’s going to be a Ravenclaw, just like us. I know he is, he’s a bri-“ Alivan let his mind wander away from the conversation his mother was carrying to the girl standing beside John. She did the same for him and for a moment the two children just stared at one another. “Rae,” the girl said while holding out a hand. “Alivan,” Alivan said and accepted the handshake. For the first time in forever his name got no reaction. It wasn’t a strange name, it wasn’t a quirky name, it was a name. “Where’re your robes?” the girl asked as she poked over Alivan’s jumper. “On the way,” Alivan answered, “they have some spare ones on the train for that sort of thing.” “Well why didn’t you get them?” the girl pressed. There were boxes from Olivander’s on the boy’s cart, which meant he’d been to Diagon Alley and should have picked up his- Wait, boxes? “Why do you have more than one box?” Rae asked Alivan, pointing to the small pyramid of Olivander’s that he’d purchased. “Uh,” Alivan started. Maeve caught onto the conversation going on between the children and cut in. “Alivan was just bringing in some shipments from Olivander. Fixed wands and all of that.” “Well that’s nice,” John mentioned, “thought he woulda used the post for that sort of thing.” “Family friend,” Alivan answer. He knew the story he was supposed to be telling, he just wasn’t sure why he was supposed to be telling it. Mom had said that the wands were to be a secret until he spoke to the headmaster, but Alivan couldn’t imagine why. He had 5 wands. 5! That meant he had four more than anyone else, he must have been a terribly powerful wizard, and being powerful was a good way to make friends. “Oh he must be a great dinner guest!” John mentioned before the Hogwarts Express cut into the conversation. Both adults glanced down at their watches. “Heavens,” John started, “look at that we’ve been talking for barely a minute and they want to break us up.” “You will come over for dinner soon,” Maeve said as she grabbed onto Alivan’s wrist and started pulling him toward the train. Alivan broke free from her grip and walked beside her. The boy was going out on his own, he figured he didn’t need hand holding. “Alivan,” Maeve said from the edge of the platform when he was about to hand over some of his baggage. “Yes Mum?” Alivan asked as he spun around. Maeve was as close to tears as someone could get without sobbing. “I am so proud of you,” she got out before breaking down in a hug and pulling Alivan tight. Mom had been proud before, for a lot of different reasons. This was the first time that she’d been proud of magic though, and that meant the world.

  • Gabe Osinski

    To be fair, this has happened with ALL of the above. Newspapers were going to doom the youth, so was radio, television, movies, books that weren't christian, paintings, sculptures... Its just a phase that all art mediums go through on their way to acceptance. It tends to present ideas in a different manner, or different ideas, than people are used to, which evokes a feeling of change, and people like 'the good old days' more than the changing future. Why are videogames still seen as this? Largely because of how the AAA industry handles games and advertising. They do it very immaturely. More recently we have seen many more artistic games from the indie scene, a few from the AAA scene, and at the same time the rise in acceptance of games in general. This isn't an accident, though a larger cause is likely the shifting age demographics. But AAA games often don't have titles like Fight Club or Inception (Both very different quality and message movies, but both serve the point). Sure, we have fighting games, and we have action puzzle games, but the writing and design often doesn't match up to deliver a cohesive message like those movies, or to ask stimulating questions. The fact that the more 'high brow' side of TV, cinema and books exists causes them to receive some image of that maturity, despite often not displaying it. Games, meanwhilst, are seen as distractions for children - as often that's what their main focus is. A side part of that that games struggle with is ludonarrative dissonance. Its where gameplay doesn't match the story - Bioshock Infinite was targeted for this semi recently. In many games, its message is told through cinematic cutscenes, and then in the gameplay that message of peace and working together or being merciful turns into a bloodbath because the player needs something to engage them. This can lead to the image that games try are low brow entertainment, and focused on flashy action and such, with the more thematically interesting story only existing as something to drive the gameplay, or as an afterthought that is undercut by the gameplay. This isn't necessarily accurate, however it does impede any message a game tries to teach when its strongest teaching method, interactivity, is used against it. That said, some games do pull things like this off excellently. The original Bioshock and Spec Ops; The Line both had stories that were very thematically relevant to videogames, and asked their players to consider some rather poignant questions about why they were doing what they were doing, how they thought of themselves and the game, and contrasting it to the dystopian game world to show how strange that behaviour really was. Both games mechanics also reinforced these ideas, and at times offered alternatives to those in the know. Other games do similar; The Last of us is praised for its story, though I've not personally played it, Journey was a beautiful game all around, and we're running into things like the Telltale games taking off which, while they don't exploit the medium to its fullest, are different to what many think when they see videogames. But it is important to realise that gaming rode into true mainstream popularity on the backs of Pokemon and CoD. A game for children, and a game that shouldn't be for children but is. And the AAA industry has largely followed that example; with flashy, fast paced, action gameplay and Michael Bay-esques story direction, or smaller, simpler games more meant for children. Games rode into popularity of the backs of these titles (Though it was Nintendo and Apple/Facebook with the Wii and fremium mobile games that brought it to the elderly and many of the hold out families, though still as a largely gimmicky short time waster rather than anything serious). It is riding into acceptance on the backs of these more thought provoking and artsy games though. And its a trend you'll continue to see; more people grow up with games with a good message, and will make such games themselves, and thus more such games will be made. In games, much like movies, tv, and books, low brow entertainment will likely always be the biggest driving force and portion of the market, however as we make more high brow games, the perception of gaming as a mature medium will increase, even if few people actually use it that way.

  • Ruthie Ebert

    I would say that CELTA is NOT necessary for Korea or Japan if youre teachiing high school students and below. For some reason I thought it would up my chances of being hired because it showed I wasn't willing to just do some online TEFL without knowing if it was actually beneficial or legit. The CELTA required me to do in class learning as well as actual teaching to adults. It was so expensive and honestly not sure if it was worth it now that I think about it. It is VERY intensive I have to say. You end up with a stack of papers and a book for some help at the end but I feel like it can be modernized a bit more and less heavy on paper. I liked that I could practice what I learned and teach an actual class in the community and have my peers rip me apart teling me where I could improve on. If you're not good at criticism you'll have to get used to it in CELTA. It's good for you so you can do it to yourself while teaching on your own and constantly try to improve. I did my program in San Francisco California. You get to teach students that are either residents in the cty or tourists or foreign students trying to take the English test. They come to the class sort of as an extra / volunteer class and so you never know what level of students you're teaching. We had no PPTs to make nor a projector ... we just taught with a white board, paper, and markers. It wasn't as helpful for Korea since all I do is use PPTs but for when the computer breaks down I just revert to what I remember in CELTA. CELTA is not exactly the best for teaching children/teenagers because it's for adults. I do teach one adult class per week for the community in my city so that has been handy. I think CELTA is usually a stepping stone to something else like a masters or etc. Korea doesnt really discriminate with tefl programs online or CELTA since I know many people who got hired without a CELTA. It doesnt look any fancier but the interview guy probably liked to hear that I wanted those in class hours to show I was serious about it. You can go on the website yelp and search for the city san francisco and type in CELTA and see what you find from reviewers. It was almost 3000$ or more. Im not sure if you're American or not... but you can't teach for the korean govenrment program EPIK if youre not from the countries listed as english speaking. I think you should compare your salary of teaching spanish versus english. It may be more lucrative to teach spanish but who knows. My experience in korea teaching for the epik program has been pretty positive but I have know a few people who got sent to the country side in vocational schools who are struggling to justify why they are there. I lucked out that I got co workers who speak English VERY well, who care about my input, and my students are not 100% rebels (which is very good). I unfortunately was placed in TWO schools to teach during the week which doubles the amount of lessons I potentially have to make since they use different books and or dont use books at all. That was difficult the first semester but Ive since found my rhythm. It's 22 hours of actual teaching but i spend quite a bit of time making lessons and figuring things out. During winter and summer vacation we are required to do english camps, aka a week or two for the school where we plan themed activities for the students to have fun. Its kind of difficult to plan when they give u 0$ for a budget but sometimes Ive been given 400-500. There is a website called waygook.org you can look at . a lot of us use it for resources and its a forum for talking but it's filled with trolls and negative expats at times. reddit seems a bit more positive. I have my own studio apt paid for, standard of living is pretty okay, pollution gets bad at times but no way as bad as china, and it's been pretty doable. I live in a big city so im not without my american things and its convenient. As for Japan, enjoy it! Its expensive to live in (i lived there for a month as a kid) and I feel its bit more repressive (people dont say what they want and have two faces - its a cultural ting apparently and im generalizing here) and in korea they are a bit more blunt. Japan is BEAUTIFUL. and clean. and safe. I hope you enjoy your time! my friend is japanese n moved from bolivia to japan again in tokyo. she speaks fluent spanish haha. Message me more questions, i got all day in the office since today is placement test day

  • Dolores Ruecker

    Aaww thanks glad you've enjoyed the AMA! I would say the fandoms fluctuate a lot based on what's marketed or popular at the moment. Pokémon has obviously seen a renewal since Pokémon Go came out. Batman has always been super popular Star Wars is also pretty constant, along with Harry Potter. Recently I finished a Punisher themed half sleeve and that was really cool!! Other stuff comes and goes as interest ebbs and flows naturally. A lot of people my age (late 20s through mid 30s) like getting stuff that reminds them of their childhoods so lots of 90s pop culture is popular including Nick cartoons. I haven't done a Garbage Pail Kids tattoo yet but I would be so down to do one! Tattoo training obviously varies from mentor to mentor. But a quick run down...for the first few months I did little aside from showing up early, cleaning the shop top to bottom, scrubbing tubes and running the autoclave, answering phones, doing paperwork and doing drawing assignments such as tracing lettering and roses and skulls over and over again. Tedious stuff. Most good mentors will do this to weed out the little rockstars and people who think they can just jump right into it and make money hand over fist. After showing up every day and being dutiful, polite and doing whatever I was asked, I started getting cooler drawing assignments and my mentor would start showing me new tricks and pushing what I was capable of as an artist. I drew constantly, even on the light rail and bus to and from the shop I would be drawing skulls and roses and all sorts of stuff. Then I could start watching my mentor tattoo. I spent countless hours hovering over his shoulder (and other artists that invited me to watch. I'm proud to say I was well liked and worked hard there. Besides the shop owner but that's a whole other long story) watching him tattoo. Slowly I would earn more knowledge, things like needle depth and how to pull a line, how to pack color, how to shade grey etc. as well as how to work clean and safe (although I had taken my blood borne pathogen training in the very beginning) and all sorts of other things. I eventually learned watercolor painting, new painting techniques with acrylic, how to draw human portraits and other realism. About 8 months in I finally got to tattoo myself for the first time (it sucks and I was hella nervous but I'll never fix it) and from there I would tattoo myself several more times before practicing on a couple good friends. The rest is more or less history. :) tattoo apprenticeships require a lot of dedication. I simplified my timeline but there were hard points when I was learning when I felt frustrated and overwhelmed. There was drama sometimes and doubt. I'm grateful for my Sensei for always being stern and compassionate in his approach with me and always steered me right. I know I had a much better apprenticeship than a lot of folk and I thank my mentor at least once or twice a year. As far as how I decided to be a tattoo artist...it just kinda presented itself as an opportunity. So I took it. I had never had a machine in my hands before (and wouldn't for 8 months) and only had 4 tattoos at the time, and no knowledge about the subculture or anything besides a pretty vague notion. But I loved art and I thought tattoos were cool, and had thought about drawing tattoo designs to sell to shops in the past. Before I started tattooing I actually wanted to be an illustrator for book covers and children's books. :) so I had a drawing portfolio. I was accepted under a different mentor first (the shop owner) and that was a train wreck that my Sensei saved me from. It's been a rough road and I gotta say I'm lucky cus I worked with some great people, have a great Sensei, and a good support network of family (a little financial support and a couch to sleep on) and friends (and now my wonderful fiance) who encouraged me to see my dream through. It hasn't all been sunshine and roses...but it has been the most rewarding, humbling, touching, meaningful and interesting thing I ever could have imagined doing with my life, and I wouldn't trade it for the world.

  • Leopold Reichel

    Firstly, it's really not worth that much explaining to say it's a bad product! (Ironically I wrote a lot too...) Your first point brings a good point/discussion about effects and structure of effects, mainly when it comes to prolonged gambling demos. Personally I've found that they are cool to some people, but they don't have the same effect on say your dad or mum versus a seasoned gambler. You can make them entertaining if you're not framing it as, look at me, I can find cards. I tend not to do them because after showing how you can produce all the aces, there's not much you can follow it with. "Your card is lost in the deck!", "I don't believe you, you controlled 4 aces, so you're obviously controlling your card", Chris Mayhew and David Williamson has some great ideas on this exact point. Erdnase was definitely catering to the gambler/magician, but there was a lot more to it then just a few gambling demos. No doubt Madison has capitalized further on that though... There is a lot of valuable stuff in erdnase, and a lot of the moves that are in there, were described technically and fully for the first time. It was very much one of the first technical books on cards. Erdnase also contributed some original moves and commentary on existing moves. Regardless of what people say about it being dated, the majority of the moves are still fully workable, if they aren't as practical you should be able to cater to making them so. If you are reading an advanced text (although more intermediate/advance nowadays) on cards, you should at least be able to creatively cater it to yourself... People need to make money, that's how it's always been and always has been. In fact, the ending of Erdnases preface to the book, humorously (at least if he was joking) reflects this: *"...but whatever the result may be, if it sells it will accomplish the primary motive of the author, as he needs the money."* Therefore, magic companies need to make money, magicians need to make money. Whilst there are selfless magicians and people who genuinely want to further the art, the big companies or greedy magicians have to survive with money. You see cash grabs all the time. The best beginner DVD ever seems to be released every month, with the exact same tricks that could be found in every other DVD, but it's created by the same guys who run the company publishing and pushing it. Magic kits are being churned out by every company, again using the same tricks, just different packaging. There's a ton of video instruction to old books, sometimes done in the hopes of bettering the original material, or bringing it to light, sometimes as a shameless cash grab. Royal road has been done to death, 13 steps has been republished a bunch of times, Tarbell is penguins money maker. There's also bandwagon and hype effects, such as the omni phase where everything that came out was just "hey this is an omni pen, totally different from the omni deck, oh and this is an omni chair, and an omni spectator", same thing with smoke effects, which seems to be making a comeback. All of these are fairly easy money with very little creative input aside from "hey, lets substitute this cigar in this manipulation routine for a sharpie. It's a completely new trick now". Of course some of it might have merit, but the majority of these things are not needed and overpriced. Lastly, I think new people in magic should just experience the regret of buying a new overpriced product for themselves, to realize they could've got the equivalent with a book 20 times cheaper... It's like children, if they are climbing something they aren't supposed to, they are going to learn more from falling and injuring themselves, then if they are told not to. The latter creates a human impulse to do the complete opposite!

  • Sydnee Torp

    I really don't know if she was cheating or not. She did have a dude who was visiting her at her work which was in retail. And I knew about that she told me he was just a friend and her brother even thought the guy was gay. But I really don't know and won't ever know most likely. She turned very religious towards the middle and end. So I do truly think she was waiting to have sex until marriage. Also she already had two small children. So I think she sorta used it a way to find another guy who she really wanted to be a father for her kids. We made out plenty and got on top of one another very often. So i feel she would have gave into temptation at least one time with me if she was sleeping around with someone else behind my back. I think she would have slept with me at least once even if she was sleeping with someone else as well. So I truly think she was really trying to follow the bible rules. Also because she had two kids as a teenager and I think she wasn't religious at all during that time. And maybe she regretted doing some of the things she had done prior in life. So she felt reformed now and my community is one of the most religious places in America. So I don't doubt that she was being told by all her friends at church she should wait until she finds a man who wants to marry her. I don't know though. She could have been sleeping around behind my back and using me for a steady relationship hopefully searching for something she couldnt just get from maybe someone else? I dont know and have no clue. But she told me that she wanted someone who would read the bible with her every night and talk about jesus. She really got invested into two different churches. One was her normal Sunday morning church another one was a new mega church which had a group of young people who would meet up every week. And she was scared to ever introduce me to the group because she said she thought I would make fun of them or something. It was strange because she took me to her Sunday morning church with her a few times and introduced me to some of her church friends even. All I know is in the end she never truly liked me even. She told all her co-workers we were just friends and she didnt even like me more than that. After almost a years worth of time. And I worked for the same company as her just at a different retail location in town. And it was my friendly co-workers who talked to her co-workers and then broke the bad news to me one day at my job in front of all of my peers. I have never felt so embarrassed and ashamed because I had said many great things about her for over a year and how much I liked her. I think it was based on the way my appearance because I am slightly overweight and not very tall. And she was very gorgeous but she had two kids with no father in their life. So I felt it was an even deal between us. If she was single and had no kids I doubt I would have got an opportunity to date her based on all my prior relationships at least. It was a truly sad thing that happened to me and she was really my first real relationship with another woman. I had a couple short relationships in high school and a few one night stands during my early 20's. But no never a solid girlfriend ever in my life. I felt I had finally found someone who loved me and wanted to be with me at least as a boyfriend. And it all was just a bunch of bullshit in the end. She just wanted someone to spend some time with her and give her attention. Even if things would have not worked out after a certain amount of time. I never would have ever guessed she would have not even acknowledged our relationship with her co-workers. But it really showed me the dark side of religion belief. And lead me to truly question the belief in god in general. Which lead me to science and reason and knowledge. And now I have read so many books and have gained so much knowledge that I most likely never would have found if it wasn't for her.

  • Cassandra Schulist

    (Practiced witchcraft for 5 years; initiate in multiple religious traditions) Silver Ravenwolf's content is often times prejudiced and a little "fluffy" around the edges. Knowledge is knowledge but some authors aren't worth reading for a few reasons. Still, don't rely on every book review a Pagan or witch puts out about a book. Even not-so-great books can have great information inside them somewhere. You might want to look into magickal theory (how/why it works/what it's all about) since that will help you a lot in formulating spells that work. You should also start thinking about what kind of person you are since that impacts your energy field and that can reveal what kind of magick you'd be best at (for example, if you're a really emotional person or stormy by nature, you'll probably be great at storm or weather magick). Then you can start working up to different kinds of spells. Most of what I know comes from personal experience and years of contemplation. I find witchcraft videos on youtube to be helpful...you just have to be picky about the types you choose. --- Now, on Gods, take one full stop. Stop right in your tracks. A God is an entity Who has some key features They share with people except one thing: They are tied to goodness. They are manifestations of goodness in the people and culture They come from. That being said, a lousy offering rite, misinformation, watering Them down, or spinning Them into molds They do not fit is not only disrespectful towards the cultures and traditions They come from...it's also disrespectful towards Them. There are some Gods, Spirits, Entities etc. Who will not work with people outside of a particular religion or cultural group. They think of the people of x group as being like Their children so They only care about them. Don't get mad. That's just how it is. This mostly includes smaller, low-key faiths who have faced a lot of oppression or injustice from larger society. But in larger faiths too. I'm also saying this because if you keep making a mistake due to willed ignorance, that God might decide to teach you a lesson. In addition, if you're going to approach the Celtic pantheon, you should do it in a way They'd recognize. They spent hundreds of years being approached by devotees in a certain way. That'd be a place to start, "how to honor Celtic Gods" or "Celtic offering rituals". If there are particular Gods you're interested in, look around for all Their associations. Think of an offering rite as being like a birthday party for a God. That'll make offering to Them a lot easier for you (regardless of what pantheon you approach). You're going to clean and prepare the area in a certain way for celebrating. You'll arrange food, drink, and presents around until you have it just right. You'll call Their attention and invite Them down and present Them with your gifts. You'll celebrate with Them and enjoy the environment while taking in Their vibe or sense. And after you do some things that They enjoy doing as a celebration of Their life, you'll hug, pay your respects, and say goodbye. Each culture/religion has its' own separate offering ritual and it's worth doing right. In your preparation, you should ask yourself if you're able to hear, see, or somehow communicate with the Gods since it will help you gauge whether or not you're pleasing Them. If you can't, best to stick to traditional understandings and rites so you can develop those senses over time. Like I said, I"m an initiate in three religions and I've spent a lot of time offering and honoring different Gods and Spirits. If you have any questions, I'll try and answer what I can for you.

  • Alva Howe

    >My question is (could be a case of me having outside knowledge), but why did nobody seem to be mistrustful towards Selene at all? Or were they because I was reading pretty quickly throughout. By nobody, I'm guessing you're referring to Rand, Hurin and Loial? Firstly, none among those three is very worldly and they had no idea about where they were or what to expect from/in a place like that, so they weren't exactly well-equipped to suss out an imposter, liar or thief in their given situation. More importantly however, if you read between the lines and pick up on the clues in the writing of those parts, you'll notice that Selene was using a subtle form of Compulsion over Rand and most likely the other two as well, which was muddling up their thought process with regards to her. The way they were going goo-goo-gaa-gaa over her just wasn't natural and she was also using the Power to enhance her own physical beauty to different degrees at different moments as well (remember how Rand would suddenly find himself thinking that she was becoming even more younger looking, even more beautiful as they talked about something particularly contentious?) They definitely sensed that she was different and that at times there was something very odd about her...but they just couldn't make the connection in that situation, given the breadth of their skill set and worldview. >Is Ordeith Padan Fain? I'm not sure if he showed up at end of book 2 or start of book 3, but he was with the head of the Children of Light. I don't want to look this up incase of spoilers. And also not sure if this is me reaching, but is the fact that Ordeith being similar to the name Mordeith (or was it Mordeth?) of some significance? Yes, Ordeith is Padan Fain. His conversation with Niall (Lord Captain Commander of Whitecloaks) in the Book 3 prologue, especially his knowledge of the Two Rivers and the 3 Ta'veren, is indicative of it. Ordeith (meaning wormwood) and Mordeth (meaning death) sound similar because they're both from the Old Tongue, but Fain is definitely Mordeth (from Shadar Logoth) in him...the meaning/symbolism behind the name, wormwood, is also of significance. You're just about to hit the point at which most people begin loving Mat. The questions about Rand and the Dark One fighting in the sky as well as answers to some of your other thoughts and questions will be catered to in a certain fashion by the end of Book 3. That merchant lady and her men that Rand killed in Book 3 were a group of Darkfriends who had a Gray Man with them and intended to kill Rand. It's intentionally written in such a way that you're supposed to have precisely the same questions that you've asked...were they really trying to kill him (the answer is yes) or did Rand kill them preemptively because he's going crazy (this is more subjective, but it sure seems like that right?) I would strongly recommend that you do not google anything at all about the series, including any names or in search of any meanings/explanations, because it will most definitely spoil future storylines for you. As you've noted, so much has happened in just 3 books, and there are many more left...so you can imagine how much story and development awaits and can potentially be spoiled. This sub is mostly really good with spoilers and answering any questions that current readers have without spoiling anything, so I'd say it's a good place to keep sharing both your thoughts and queries!

  • Ethel Legros

    More than anything, you are using terms unfamiliar with her, because manga being an import from Japan, does not have much notoriety in certain Western countries like the US, compared to Europe and the UK. Mostly for cultural reasons. Most parents will understand you better if you use the term, graphic novels to explain what manga is in the broadest of terms. They more than likely have not tried the media, which really only became popular in the 2000s as the "authentic" form of manga started to distinguish itself from its graphic novel cousins. Manga is a distinct variety of graphic novels originating from Japan. To many foreign imports are an have an exotic aura to them making them hard to approach. Think of it like going to the supermarket to buy oranges. You have your typical navel and mandarin oranges, but along the way you see a new variety that you've never seen before, the [sumo orange](http://www.sumocitrus.com/sumo_story.aspx). It's not quite a navel orange and too big to be a mandarin, so you might have a hard time wrapping your head around it, much less consider purchasing one. After all you've grown up with the same types of oranges all your life, and now all of a sudden this weird looking orange shows up in the store your frequent. Do you try this new thing or stick with the tried and true varieties you grew up with. Chances are most would choose the latter option. It's not easy to get people to try new things, even with things as simple as fruit. You might think it's simple and straightforward, because you've already experienced it, but the perception might differ from the other side. There's a lot of talk about the stigmatized fan scene, but your average caucasian suburban mother in America probably can't tell hentai or moe from the capital of Taiwan or types Korean BBQ, unless they grew up reading it themselves. If they never heard of manga, they probably don't know what hentai is. From my observations, kids and parents in the US, don't typically find much common ground as they are of different respective generations. Tailor your recommendations to who you want to the one enjoying it, rather than pushing what you like onto them. Everyone has their different tastes. Youtsuba& appeals to a broad audience due to the relatability of it's everyday circumstances and its simplistic plot. It might be better suited for younger parents (especially women) who have children learning to read. But parents with older children, might be interested in something more mature or heavier in terms of content or plot. If you find another parent interested about what another child is reading. Ask them what about that particular book piques their interest. Listening to them and can give you a better idea of how you can market these types of books to other parent. A good parent would know what their children likes. Appealing to these parental interests can get your foot in the door. There's no need to make a distinction between what's manga and what's not, because chances are they can't really tell them apart. Focus on the subject, if their kids like Pokemon (which might be one of the reasons the parent approached you), the Pokemon Adventure series might be a good series to push. If they like fantasy and adventure the Zelda, or Nausicaa manga series might have that mainstream appeal they're looking for.

  • Isaiah Willms

    A lot of people have a different meaning of fluent. There are some Chinese students at like TOPIK 6 level with nearly perfect grammar skills and knowledge of thousands of highly academic words (due to sino-Korean similarities with Chinese), yet they CAN NOT actually fluently communicate in Korean and it's difficult for natives to understand them. I would say I'm near fluent in Korean, but not the traditional fluent. I certainly am not fluent to the point of being able to take a philosophy course completely in Korean and 100% understanding it, in fact, there's almost no Westerner that could do that, even the ones that are 'fluent.' I'm bad at studying, but I went to the language schools for about a year and a half. I got to TOPIK 4 level, but I really couldn't not speak Korean. I knew grammar and a decent amount of words, but even ordering food on the phone was difficult. After I started my gaming and streaming career, that's when my language skill took-off. The first 3-6 months of gaming it was very difficult to communicate in chat or with teammates, I was slowly reading lines of chat, I couldn't really express my feelings properly. But after about 1.5 years of being a streamer and playing games exclusively with Koreans on Korean servers, I can read Korean about as fast as English, and communicate pretty well. My only current issue is expanding vocabulary, since I spend so much time playing games it's rare to come across words that aren't used in a gaming context. Unfortunately, learning Korean through playing video games is not really an option for most people who don't play video games 12 hours a day. You should definitely get your foundation from a language school, it is the fastest and most efficient way. After you get your foundation of very basic Korean down (the alphabet, basic grammatical and verb structure, 600+ words), what you could do is browse Korean forums, read books (children's books if you're a complete beginner), and in general just browse the Korean Internet. They use A LOT of slang, and no matter how many times you try to google translate it or ask an older non-internet-using Korean, you'll never find out what the slang is referring to or why it's used or why it's even funny (if it is); but when you DO figure it out as you advance in the language, your mind will be blown. Not only is there Internet slang, but each Internet community has its' own slang that belongs to the community. For someone intermediate in Korean, you could browse forums like DCInside, choose a "gallery" (like subreddit) that you're interested in, and just read posts/comments every day and try to figure out what a certain post is talking about. This will for sure improve your Korean, and even posting on those communities would be amazing if your Korean is good enough. Be careful though, if you try to post and your grammar is not completely correct and you claim that you're a foreigner, 99% of the forum's users will just ignore you and assume you're a troll pretending to be a foreigner, so you have to just kinda lurk. Also, something you SHOULDN'T do is get into a relationship for language purposes. Because if the person you're in a relationship with can speak English, let's be honest; you're only gonna be speaking in English for anything important/worth learning. If that person cannot speak English, well then what the fuck are you doing and how are you even communicating? That cannot end well. Anyways, gl

  • Joanny Bernhard

    I'll note that neither do I think of the portrait as one of the best - I just remember once reading a list of the greatest portraits of all time (don't even remember where) and this one held a spot. But it does hold a certain appeal to me, which I cannot exactly describe. I'm not from Spain, but I live relatively close to it - in certain parts of Europe with prominent rural areas, it is typical for parents living in the city to send their children at their grandparents'/relatives' place in the country during the summer. And those grandmothers and aunts that lived there were, personality-wise, exactly like aunt Pepa described here. You might get the impression that she was an unlikeable and conservative person, but it was probably quite the opposite. So, as someone who has spent numerous vacations at grandmother's/grandfather's, I find something very cool in the image of young Picasso arriving at his aunt's place during the summer, eager to roam around town, hang out with his friends, but having to be around his likeable, but sometimes just a little bit irritating relatives. With that in mind, I look at the portrait, and for me it is a portrait which looks the way it does just because it was painted by young Picasso, and not some random professional who would be hired to do it. No offense but, if you are from America, I'll respectfully say that you cannot quite imagine how I feel about it, simply because the difference between cultures - if you have ever seen some films by Federico Fellini you might know what I'm talking about (I know Fellini is an Italian - but it's very similar). There's nothing wrong about it, as I'm certain there is art which bears meaning to you, but I can't quite identify with it - we're all different, after all. And as far as your opinion on the greatness of art goes - it's such a huge subject that Bible-sized books could be written about it. I'll just say that I think that art which our generations of people will deem the greatest literally won't be the greatest as the greatest classical art. Both are the greatest at the same time because the people's *perception* of art has changed *so much*. There are many people who are experts in, say, Renaissance art. But do you ever think just how different it must have been to be a consumer of art in that time? Nothing was printed, published and then brought to your door. Only a few copies of books were made, and they weren't sold in stores, they were stored in libraries which you had to visit to read them. You barely knew *anything* about the authors - today they tweet about their daily activities all the time. And art critics weren't even a thing back then - some artists were more famous than others, but rarely anbody during the Renaissance bothered with picking the greatest pieces of art. Finally, being an artist in that time was a real job, and once you had it you could've done (almost) anything you want knowing you won't lose money or something. Renaissance was filled with innovations. In 1915 Malevich painted the Black Square, influencing generations of abstract artists - how do you innovate anything after something so groundbreaking like that? Today, everything is different. So in my humble opinion, the greatest classical art is simply incomparable with anything modern. Dammit. I just wanted to write a comment and accidentally wrote an essay.

  • Erna Homenick

    Your argumentation looks circular. When you write “She's a narcissist at the end of the day, so she's never gonna value anything more than she values herself” it seems you are starting from the place where you want to arrive. And of course, “valuing oneself more than anything else” is the only sane behaviour for a thinking being but let’s leave this for another day. I am exclusively discussing show-Cersei here, the book character being so different they cannot be merged. Your impression of her could be right in the books but I don’t think it is in the show. Let’s see. Cersei, like many other characters, is torn between choices. GRRM himself likes to quote someone saying it’s the only thing worth writing about and this is something we find in her relationship to Tywin. She wants to be like him, she says she has listened to him all her life but she is not willing to pay the price his philosophy asks of her. They share logic and a set of values but she makes a different choice in that she places herself higher than he would himself. He is a relentless, ascetic worker and she is clearly not. She also has a woman’s feelings for her children which he apparently lacks. He is like an ideal someone refers to for its positive effects while silently fearing or refusing its price. In a way, this is what nearly everyone does. We bring up our ideals when it suits us and we try to make arrangements with them when they come at a cost. When placed in front of a choice between herself and “the family name”, she clearly chooses herself but it is not without regret. She wants both. We saw opposition towards Tywin when it came to what mattered to her and this opposition was reckless but her resentment was not clearly targeted. She mostly spoke of it in abstract ways as opposed to Tyrion who clearly identified his father as the source of his trouble. Cersei criticized the game when Tyrion hated the player. I do not see the tricky, manipulating side of Cersei, at least not in the show. She is so straightforward you know it is what hurts her most in her relationship to people. And it’s definitely not a game, she is not playing anything. To me, she looks more like a threatened animal running for her life throughout the series. She is paranoid but it doesn’t mean no one’s out to get her. Ned Stark wanted to, Stannis wanted to and she fully believed Tyrion wanted to as well, which is why she didn’t even want him trialed. The same goes for the Tyrells after she remembered that old prophecy. Cersei is terrified, not playing. Regarding Margaery’s walk, I believe Cersei chose the preservation of the status of a queen over whatever pleasure she would have had at seeing Margaery humiliated. It is her own status which would have been walked naked through the streets again and this is another thing she didn’t want. This is what she told Tommen, by the way and it made sense. She is cleverer than people think and she has an “us” to fight for. It’s not a large one, but it’s clearly more than just a “me”. I don’t believe she is manipulating Jaime either. He is the last part of this “us”, the closest one, and it was never an affair they had but the realization of this need for a shared identity.

  • Dandre Homenick

    I'm atheist, but even as a child I never believed in any of it, so I didn't have a traumatic moment of losing my faith or anything. I remember being like 4 and playing along with "rain is God crying" and stuff. It confused me why I had to pretend like this story was real even though I was allowed to act like all the other stories adults told me were not. Maybe this is because I associated the bible with the fiction books we read? Not sure. I "don't mind" religion. I understand it's a positive influence for a lot of people and those beliefs and convictions are totally real to them. However most religious groups that I have encountered regularly -- friends' parents, local political scene, stuff like that -- are CLEARLY a harmful influence. Anyone trying to impose their views on others is an instant rage button for me. My husband's career is the worst for this. He had to register which religion he was (buddhist, he's asian) and attend services every Sunday while in training or be lightly punished (just given extra work and kind of harassed for being different, I do think this is punishment) even though those services didn't reflect the buddhism his family practiced, and given a real choice he wouldn't go. Now that he's out of training and actually working, he has to do the whole "let's bow our heads in prayer" thing regularly. Christian prayer. Any neat things going on -- employer sponsored events, even ones that are clearly 100% secular and that we pay to participate in -- go through the christian church first, so people who attend a different church or don't go at all have less chance of hearing about the events or being able to get tickets when they do know of them. His job is a branch of the government of a secular country with "separation" of church and state. This behavior is clearly illegal, even if it's not done out of bad intentions. Individual religious people that I know use their beliefs for good -- to get involved with charity work, or outreach, or help counsel people, whatever -- and are respectful of those around them who may not share their beliefs. Individual religious people I know also use it for bad -- to justify abusing their children, to keep poor people from receiving services they need, to influence other people's education or medical availability, to be exclusionary and mean -- and are not respectful of those who may not share their beliefs. As you know it's not smart to paint religious people or organizations with a wide brush because their actual beliefs and practices vary too much. Two churches right next to each other will be totally different. I don't appreciate the overall religious climate in my country -- especially people who approach you on the street or at your home to convert you, or new "friends" who suddenly don't want to talk to you if you hesitate to tell them what church you belong to -- but I don't care one bit what my neighbors believe in, if that makes sense.

  • Xander Gaylord

    >Not sure if that has anything to do with love rather than gaining power. People don't love whores they use them. That's my point he went from looking for love with a woman to using women. He doesn't have a woman in his life that he loves because that part of him died in the duel. >but there a few instances where he would be delegated a "monster". He was having fights to the death for his name day and was trying to kill a man by having him drink until he died until Sansa stepped in to save him. Then he publicly gave a minstrel the choice of having his hands cut off or his tongue ripped out because he sang a song he didn't like. Joffrey made no attempt to be discreet with his monstrous behavior. I don't take these as the only 2 incidents of Joffrey behaving badly they are just meant to illustrate his cruelty. >Littlefinger gains a powerful ally, while simultaneously gaining an edge in that alliance. Yes but what are the conditions of the alliance. It seems absurd to think he committed regicide without something specific in mind and just killed the King so they might do him a favor in the future. >Again, Littlefinger wants to create chaos and instability in the capital so he can continue to climb the social hierarchy. Joffrey on the throne does this and in the books it's implied that Littlefinger can manipulate Joffrey to act on his worst instincts (changing Ned's punishment from banishment to execution). >Not sure what "mechanism" you're referring to but who's to say it didn't work? We were talking about the Tyrell's role in murdering Joffrey it didn't work if the Lannisters are unaware the Tyrell's had a hand in it. Nothing that happened between the Tyrell's and Lannisters after Joffrey's death seems different than what was going on before he died. >And Lysa was not an Arryn yet when he wedded her he rose to lord protector of the vale. That is as much because Robin accepted him and wanted him as regent (he's good at fooling children like Robin and Sansa). >Cersei Lannister became queen regent when she was not a Baratheon. Regent in name only Tyrion, Tywin, and Joffrey all ignored her and overruled her. If she was truly the regent she would have appointed her own hand of the king. >Robyn being littlefingers possible son is kind of irrelevant. I don't think it is irrelevant, I think Littlefinger befriended the boy as soon as he was old enough to speak more than his legal father Jon did who was busy as Hand. Which is why Robin and Littlefinger are so close. Littlefinger's plan all along was to kill Robin's "legal" parents and take their place which is why there was never any room for Cat.

  • Cynthia Schmidt

    (Kind of a long one here but here it goes) All in all there were plenty of things I liked about the episode and a few I could've done without. I like the fact that Alice is stuck to Q in place of the Cacodemon but I did prefer the way it was done in the books. I'm very confused on how Magicians like Eliot, Margo and even Q (when he was in Fillory in the beginning) wouldn't even have it cross their minds to put up wards around the castle...it just makes NO SENSE...I did enjoy watching Kady punch someone in the face :) Julia, as she seems to continue to do in each upcoming episode, is only annoying me more & more. I enjoyed her character so much in the books, I just feel the way she was written in the show sucks, I cannot find myself empathizing with her at all in the show, whereas the books, her behavior/actions/mannerisms made perfect sense. I'm looking forward to seeing where the story is going to go with the war with Loria (book version was different but in my opinion enjoyable to read with quite a few funny parts) not sure how the show will deal with it but I'm trying to stay optimistic. I'm very interested to find out more about Reynards child (now adult) Dana said he was someone in power/influential (this is a BIG change from the books so I have no clue whats going to happen). I do have a question for the thread....so we now know that Julia is not the first person this has happened to....so....does Reynard have any other demigod children out there besides Dana's? If this happened to Julia and Dana before her then could it have happened to anyone else? IDK...just was a thought I had. I am happy we technically have Alice back (well kinda sorta) but I really wish they would've waited a little bit longer before having her come back, even in Niffin form. It just feels rushed. I dont see how in this short amount of time it will have the same effect on Q that it rightfully did in the books. As always Margo had some great lines, I really love her character. As I mentioned in the thread last week I'm still over Fen and would love to see her character go away for good. I want my good ol' man loving Eliot back! I still can't get on board with him being married to a woman (who knows if the baby is even his..like she said she did have a life before he showed up) I think it would be a good twist to have it be the Fu dudes kid. Benedict was not what I expected (in the books he reminds Q of himself at that age, so BIG change from the books) but I liked his character a lot so I'm hoping they dont screw him up too much on the show. Another question I have, do you guys think the bank heist in the next episode will be replacing the "heist" from the books, or do you think we'll still get that eventually in the show in some form? Personally I hope they dont replace it or not do it at all. I hope it does happen, maybe season 3 if the show is renewed for another season.

  • Maximilian Monahan

    About the birds... The Fenghuang isn't specifically a firebird - I should have mentioned that before. The association of the Fenghuang with fire in Chinese webnovels is actually caused by Western mythology bleeding into Chinese culture. The Western Phoenix is strongly associated with fire (being reborn from ashes and everything), but it's a completely different creature from the Fenghuang. What's happening is that Chinese authors have been fusing the Phoenix's characteristics into the Fenghuang, probably because they've come into contact with Western mythology through movies/books/etc and think the fire phoenix is cool. *** I was talking previously about the general "ranking" of birds. And one of the first things you'll read in any Chinese source talking about the Fenghuang is that it's the "King/Ruler of Birds" (百鸟之王). That's emphasized quite a bit. Combined with how the Fenghuang and Dragon are the most revered creatures, that's why I rank it at the top of the mythical bird hierarchy. The Vermilion Bird was probably at the top of the hierarchy in ancient times, I imagine (before the Fenghuang became associated with Yin and the Empress). It's still very important, of course. Since the Four Symbols are such vital components of Chinese cosmology (representing the cardinal directions, the [divisions of the sky](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twenty-Eight_Mansions), the seasons, and the elements), I believe they must have been born from the universe itself near the very beginning of time. I don't have a source for this since none of the sources I've read discuss the Four Beasts' origins, but I think that makes logical sense. But because the Vermilion Bird is such an important part of the natural world, I rank it at #2. But the Golden Crow is different. There were originally ten Golden Crows, and they were the children of Emperor Jun (god of the eastern sky, where the sun rises) and Xihe (a solar goddess). Their parentage isn't all that impressive. Emperor Jun's status is somewhat lower than the [Three Sovereigns and Five Emperors](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Three_Sovereigns_and_Five_Emperors), for example. Plus, the fact that there used to be ten of them kind of diminishes their value, IMO. They weren't vital enough to be born from the universe itself at the beginning of time, and the Golden Crow wasn't a one-of-a-kind creature. That's what makes me rank them lower than the Fenghuang & Vermilion Bird.

  • Kathleen Gulgowski

    I went to a private Christian school up to 5th grade (my brothers were in 2nd and 1st grade) and then our parents decided to homeschool. Initially I was a little worried but excited I guess. They never actually got around to teaching us anything. They bought a ton of books and whenever I asked my mom when we were gonna be taught stuff she'd yell and say we have all the books and I just need to go get them out and 'do school'. So, since we were kids, we didn't do anything. As a kid and teen I was terrified, I thought my future was doomed because how was I supposed to get into college or get a job with nothing but a 5th grade education? Yet, I kind of felt I was lucky compared to my brothers: I was a girl in a conservative religious community, my most likely future would be marrying some guy and being a stay at home wife so at least I knew I probably wouldn't starve. (Ironically, I'm 23, not a single Christian guy has approached me in my life and my boyfriend is Muslim. :D ) I was ashamed too, our lack of education was a big secret and we struggled to keep up appearances around the other homeschool families. And lastly, I was really lonely. My brothers had friends in the neighborhood but there weren't any girls my age around so I basically spent my entire childhood and teen years completely alone. I ended up with one friend somehow, but she lived just far enough away that we didn't often meet in person, and I was still too ashamed to talk to her about the things that weighed on me. Turns out she had a similar experience. Now, I'm resentful of it. It put me at a pretty big disadvantage in a lot of different ways, but I am thankfully beginning to overcome some of them. I feel like my life between the ages of 11 and 17 were completely wasted, the only productive thing I did was read a lot. However, I'm happy with where my life is right now. I finally feel like I have goals and I'm getting closer to them, rather than just existing. As for my opinion on homeschooling in general, I think it can work for the exceptional parent. If you can't do it, swallow your pride and admit it for the sake of your children. Homeschoolers should absolutely have more accountability, right now in most states it's kind of a free-for-all and so many kids are slipping through the cracks and either being neglected or outright abused. Unschooling can go die in a fire though.

  • Demarcus Olson

    When you look up the mountain you have to climb it can be overwhelming and that's when those voices yell that you can't do it. But you can take one step forward. Focus on the step right in front of you. Don't worry about the rest right now. I understand about the whole having something to hang over your head thing, my dad is a little like that too. But your well being comes before your pride. I'm glad you know what medication works for you, that alone can take multiple trips and hundreds of dollars to figure out. Wow, First, I am so sorry you were raped. You did not deserve that. Second, I am so sorry those therapists were so shitty. I can't even imagine how that has affected you. Since you are being so honest, I will be too. My husband is actually in recovery for sex addiction. He was molested multiple times by different people when he was a child. Before I was with him, he was addicted to cocaine, but I met him after he stopped. He stopped drinking too a couple years after we met. He didn't deal with his pain from the past so he turned to what he knew he was good at, sex. He was having an affair with a woman, who is a licensed therapist. She knew he was married. I actually knew about her because he was suppose to be doing side work (fixing her basement) She sometimes gave him adderal, (I think it was her sons). She even sent my children books with a note from her written in them on Valentines day. So I understand not trusting therapists, there are some really shitty ones out there. She even had her licence revoked for a bit because she was having a relationship with a client outside of the office. Hubby's cliff moment happened after I left when I found out they were having sex. (I found emails from her) Its hard to find a good one. Especially a good one you can afford. If you go for disability and your family disowens you, would that be the end of the world? Getting to functional would be an awesome climb halfway up that mountain. It would be an achievement all on its own. But If you go halfway up to functional, then you can make it to the top. Even if you have to camp out halfway up for a couple years. OMG, my sisters and I would make our own music videos to I saw the sign by Ace of Base. Except we didn't have a video camera, haha! We also had their VHS tape! Freaks are the best kind of people. Freaks are my people. YAY for internet therapy!!! This has actually helped me as well. Only one of my friends knows about his sex addiction and its something I'm pretty ashamed of, So thank YOU!

  • Tremayne Nader

    lol, Man i remember the first time i saw that. It reminds me of growing old myself. For a long time the hardest thing was not being pretty anymore. I mean, I was still pretty, but I was no longer the youngest and prettiest in the room. I was no longer able to make a real entrance. People no longer said, "Who is that thin girl with the blue eyes and the short hair?" In my thirties I became just one of the moms. Then, groups of men stopped noticing me. First the ones in their twenties, then thirties, then forties, and as I bear down hard on sixty the group of men most liable to notice me are wearing WWII vet hats. I am dead serious about this. It's hard to watch your body change shape. Hands, arms, legs, all different than they were--never, never to return. That beautiful young girl has vanished from the face of the earth. Then my babies began to vanish. My boys, who longed for me to hold them, who snuggled next to me on the couch each night, went away. I felt relief. They were out with their friends, playing in a band, away at college, married. They have wrinkles, gray hair and 401K's. When I see them, they no longer sit next to me. I can no longer rub their hair, over and over; it just wouldn't feel right. But next, a miracle. I had a grandson and loved him with a passion I never even felt with my own children. People had told me to expect this, but I didn't understand until I saw him....then I understood. But now he is out in the world, at the park, with his friends, and he no longer snuggles with me, because he's ten. My joints hurt, my thumbs are quite arthritic, and I had an old lady fall this summer, shattering my arm. My mother is growing older and I know that she will grow truly old and ill and die someday. I know that for sure now. My career is stalled, but I do a very good job at what I do, and I find joy in my work and in my competence. You know how they say you lose brain cells as you age? What a myth. I grow more and more wise, I learn new things every day, and one of my biggest fears is that I will die before I've read all of the books I want to read. But as I grow more wise, people want to hear what I say less and less. So I'm sitting back, taking it all in, letting the great world spin.

  • Stewart Leannon

    I'm a teaching assistant, and I disagree. The English language is flexible, and hearing this flexibility in a read-aloud is good for children's language acquisition. They're not *just* learning precise grammatical rules; they're also learning how to communicate. And, like it or not, people *do* communicate using sentences that start with "and" or "but." They also use prepositions to end sentences with. (I think that one's not even a rule anymore.) If all we read to children were books where every character and every narrator used only precisely grammatically correct speech, they wouldn't be getting the full English experience. I don't really like teaching spelling or grammar "rules" as if they're unbreakable and inflexible. We teach spelling patterns, but we also teach the oddball words that don't fit the patterns. And when we work on writing, we work on voice and word choice just as much as on conventions. We don't tell them "don't start sentences with 'and'" as a way to ensure they don't start *all* their sentences with "and." Instead, we tell them the real goal: start your sentences in different ways. Furthermore, we teach them that these authors have finished school, and they *know* all the rules, and one of the prizes for getting good enough at writing to get published is that now you're allowed to *break* the rules. But most good writers only break the rules for a good reason, so if you see it happening, ask yourself why. Is it to show the reader something about that character? Is it to have a certain rhythm? Is it because it's funnier or more interesting that way? Being a good writer is a lot more than just memorizing and following grammar rules. And maybe you think they need the basics before they can layer in the more interesting parts, but I think that's a recipe for teaching children to hate writing. Remember, language is fun. Reading is fun. Writing is fun. Stories are fun. Learn the rules, yes, but don't forget to enjoy yourself along the way.

  • Peter Jast

    Yes, I really am half-Filipino. You're right about Filipinos going apeshit about any kind of Filipino representation in the media, and thus I concede your point about representation mattering. Personally, though I never really identified with Filipino culture all that much and haven't had much in the way of Filipino role models. I grew up with "mixed child syndrome" where I was never quite Filipino enough to be considered Filipino, but too dark-skinned to be considered white. So I'm very different in this regard as far as cultural identification goes. >Why is it that movies, TV, and books have been instilling values into our children for all of their existence? Aesop's fables? If you go way back to pre-history, superhero mythology has its roots in actual hero worship. Real people who did real amazing feats and were admired for their values and what they could accomplish, those were the role models for their respective cultures. The appeal of superheroes is that they demonstrate ideals that are already valued by society. Along those same lines, if we are trying to instill in our children that race, skin color, heritage, etc. is irrelevant to how a person should be treated, and by extension, their success in life, how does focusing so much on race, skin color, heritage, etc. instill that value? >Asian Americans are far less likely to become CEOs for a company despite being well represented in lower level positions in tech, for example. I'm not sure what your source is on this but this seems like a statistical interpretation from somewhere. It may be there are few Asian American CEOs but I wouldn't venture to say that being born Asian in America is a deterrent to corporate success. Is Vanessa Hudgens really part Filipino? Aww shit son, I might actually have a chance!

  • Brandy Schiller

    I'm South Asian so my perspective is obviously different. But at least for me, I don't see why the question is absurd as some here seem to think. It really depends on how embedded you are in your community, and how much you want that to be the case for your SO and children (if any). So much of my life experiences, my values, and what I enjoy is rooted in my ethnic identity so for a non-South Asian the gap would be quite difficult to bridge. And with the guy I'm seeing now, who is Tamil like me, we can have an easy back and forth, agreements and disagreements about movies/songs/books - I like that. And as an added bonus we can always talk shit about other people in Tamil so there's that. A cousin of mine who moved here to a city without knowing anyone there was helped by a one of his friend's relative. Unlikely to happen with a white SO. Now for me, if I have kids in the future it is an absolute necessity for them to be taught to read, write and speak Tamil (or another South Asian language) fluently. Without that they would not be able to sustain a connection to Tamil history and culture, and since they can't enjoy Tamil media and literature they'll be almost entirely dependent on white media and literature (most of the self-hating South Asians I know can't speak anything other than English). And teaching a child another language by yourself without the help of your spouse is extremely hard. I know this because I've seen a few Indian-White marriages and none of them have managed to pass on their language or culture to their children (and then there's the eventual blame game), as opposed to most of the Indian-Indian marriages I've seen. There's often a distance between the white partner and the Indian parents and extended family. And the world is getting more tribal, the West is becoming more and more hostile to non-whites, I want my family to be rooted in my community both here in the US and in the motherland. So again, I don't see why the question is being dismissed as silly. It's a reasonable question for any POC to ask.

  • Clement O'Kon

    The examples that you gave (Sunny, restaurant, hospital, etc.) are humorous because they are absurd situations, just as I said in my previous post. The show definitely captures this aspect to some extent; for example, Mr. Poe's ridiculous ineptitude is excellently portrayed, and the locations are appropriately weird. However, the show adds another layer of humor in that Olaf is much more self-aware and flamboyant in his mannerisms, his choice of phrasing, his random breaking into song. He was just not that flamboyant in the books. I'm not saying this is a bad change - books and shows are different mediums, and what works in one doesn't necessarily work in the other, so some change to the humor was inevitable. But I think it is clear that there is a difference. I disagree with you about the show glossing over the dark aspects. The books were hilariously dark, but they were still very dark. In particular, the example you mention - Klaus getting slapped - I thought was played quite lighter in the show. In the show, Olaf's troupe reacts in horror and sympathy. They are worried that Olaf might drop Sunny, and shocked that Olaf would slap Klaus. But in the book, the troupe sneers at the children and applauds Olaf's actions. The scene serves to emphasize just how alone the children are. Literally no one around them cares that they are being abused. Literally none of the adults present care enough to help them or even worry about them. And again, maybe the show's lightening was a necessary result of the visual medium. It is one thing to read about something terrible and another to watch it happen. But again, I think it is clear that there is a difference.

  • Thaddeus Schuster

    It's probably worth noting that all of the things you identified as problems aren't objectively problems in any universal sense. They're cultural problems. *You find them weird because it's weird within your culture.* But, at the age of 3, some women are still breastfeeding. In some cultures, the toddlers will identify when they're ready to be potty trained, and so forth. In fact, there are quite a number of parenting books *in this culture* that recommend you approach raising toddlers in this fashion because being a toddler is difficult on toddlers. They're understanding more about the universe but are trapped in tiny dumb drunk bodies that won't let them communicate, surge them with uncontrollable emotions, and so forth. Trying to enforce unnecessary rules just because otherwise you find it weird only adds to the turmoil of being a toddler. You have different parenting styles. If you want to eventually have children together then you should sort out your styles now. These divides aren't going to just disappear with time. But it's important that you know that you're not technically right and she's not technically wrong. You have two different, viable approaches. You also need to ask your girlfriend for clarification on what your role is in *her family unit.* It's sweet that you want to be a father for the young kid but is that what she wants?

  • Gwen Schuppe

    Well, it sounds like you're already on the right track. Just keeping the conversation going with her and letting her adjust slowly to the idea that she was adopted is key. And, of course, you're not going to bombard her with all the details yet-she's too young to really process it all. However, I think you can slowly start expanding the conversation. For instance, around in the next few years you can start giving her more information on the difference between adoptive/birth parents. And there are some great children's books out there than can help you with this. Then as she reaches tweens/teens you can start getting into more specifics of her birth parent. But you can adjust this based on the amount of interests she shows. Kids can be different in how much they wish to know about the who and why of their being given up for adoption. So, all that to say, I'm not sure there's a hard and fast answer for the specific age a child will be when they understand everything about being adopted. A lot will depend on their personality/the circumstances of their adoption/etc. However, don't be afraid to seek outside help if you find yourself unsure of how to answer her questions. A counselor who works specifically with adopted kids can be really helpful in circumstances like these...

  • Alvah Towne

    She maintains her own home and gets her bills paid (likely). I'd say that's a decent part of being an adult. And I added reading books, traveling, and other stuff to show that she's living a normal life like most people. Most of us spend average weeks working, watching TV, hanging with friends, and going to shops. That's what she seems to do as well. What is she supposed to do to prove she's "mature"? Go bungee jumping? Go clubbing every weekend? I don't care if you think being a stay-at-home wife with no kids is uninspiring and depressing. I know plenty of girls Kathleen's age who are living that life and are perfectly content and happy. Not every woman needs children to be happy and not every woman needs a job to feel fulfilled. Every woman should live the life SHE wants to live. Also, anxiety can stop people from doing a lot of things. Maybe don't be so judgmental about the things anxiety stops people from doing, because everyone struggles in different ways. I, too, learned how to pump my own gas—but I struggled with it for years due to fears my mind wouldn't stop tormenting me with. This is EXACTLY why I responded in the first place. People seem so damn judgmental about this girl because she chose to make life decisions that a lot of Western women nowadays choose not to make. That's not okay in my book.

  • Antwon Hartmann

    This is a good analysis and I would agree with you. Voldemort probably did give the encouragement to all of his followers to feel important and so, they continue to express these "evil" traits, even if the original reason for being sorted into Slytherin had nothing to do with these characteristics. And yes, they would have shaped their children who are the focus of the series. I would extend the argument that even during the events of the books, most Slytherins were conducting themselves as it was in the past. It was the small group of Voldemort's followers that stood out in the story and so, we hear more about them and their children. A lot of what we perceive Slytherins to be come from Harry's view and so, it is very bias. Most of the children of non- Death Eaters were unheard of and was implied to have been neutral in the war. And I think the fact Snape, who is younger than Voldemort and Slughorn, turned out to be completely different than what we thought shows that these model Slytherins have continued to exist. They just got overshadowed by the dark ones. So now that Voldemort and his followers have disappeared, we can expect a greater focus on the group that have always been there but never received attention- the "past" Slytherins.

  • Zelda Feest

    I used to go here (to the original location, where this photo was taken) often as a small child with my mom and other parents/kids. It truly felt like walking through a magical forest--weird and other-worldly, but not threatening. Who ever designed the structures did such a great job making them look fantastical and different from real-world buildings, like the way buildings were illustrated in children's books. My mom has numerous photos of me as child sliding down Mt. Vesuvius, standing next to Willie the Whale, etc. I loved going there. There have been articles in MD papers over the years about the disrepair the facility had fallen into, and they made me really sad. I'm thrilled to know that many of the original park pieces have a new home and are being taken care of. It's wonderful. Though they look much different on the treeless farmland, honestly--they feel sort of out of context to me. In the forest, as a child, it felt like you were wandering through this mysterious place and anything could be hidden behind the next copse of trees. It was really a magical experience.

  • Bailee Friesen

    She's a toddler, and sounds like she's much to busy being curious about the world for a while book. And that's ok at her age. As long as you keep trying to read to her, even if you get only a few minutes in before she runs off, that's great. Try to make it happen multiple times a day and then those few minutes add up. Remember that she's a sponge so she's absorbing even if she's not sitting quietly and looking directly at the pages. Also, you and your husband keep reading your books around her. Seeing your interest will also help build hers. And maybe try different types of books too, e.g. Seek and find, pop-ups, or more interactive books. Good luck! Source: am a children's librarian

  • Eulalia Friesen

    >12 What are the places beneath the sea that Jonas speaks of? What is the hierodules that Jonas speaks of? What is the machine Jonas stepped into? Is it like father Inire's device? The hierodules are the three odd beings Severian meets several times throughout the books (Ossipago, Famulimus, and... Herbert? I think it's Herbert). This is covered in *Urth of the New Sun*, so it might be a spoiler, but they are agents of (who are created by) the Hierogrammates, who are basically gods. They travel backwards through time, so the first time Severian meets them is the last time they meet him, from their perspective. Jonas steps into Father Inire's mirror, which is evidently called a Specula. >13 What the hell was the story with the moving castle on the island supposed to be? Another *shrug*. It contains foreshadowing some of the later events (for example, the fight with Baldanders). The fish god is probably an undine, which is one of the reasons Baldanders goes there: he appears to be either an undine, a half-breed, or just very interested in them. Wolfe likes these stories-within-stories. I usually find them boring, then regret not paying more attention to them later. >14 What was the green face they saw after being whipped in the antechamber? Probably the Green Man from #6. Maybe he was trying to rescue Severian as a *quid pro quo*. I can't think of anyone else who is green. >What was the butterfly woman the autarch showed Severian? It's a character Severian will meet in *Urth of the New Sun*. >What rare weapon was used on Baldanders? Smoke? Why did Baldanders get mad? Is he just dumb? Baldanders is definitely not dumb, but I don't remember the specific incident you're talking about. Do you happen to have a citation? >Did Severian rape jolenta? Almost certainly. > What exactly does the woman in the river look like? Who is she? Her name is Juturna, and she's an undine, so think of her as looking basically human, but being so large that she can only live underwater. When she tries going on land, her body can't support the weight. She's the same undine who rescued Severian from drowning in the first book. I'm not sure why she both helps Severian, and tries to kill him; possibly, he did something she didn't like, or was about to. Note that "Juturna" and "Diuturna", the lake with the floating islands, are different spellings of the same word. >19 What is a cumaean and what was that vision of the Apa-Punchau on the roof? She's not from Urth, for sure. She's a reptilian being disguised as an old woman. In Roman mythology, the [Cumaean sibyll](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cumaean_Sibyl) was effectively a prophetess or oracle, and, notably, she guides the hero to the underworld by taking him through a cave called Avernus (hmmm). We get a reference to her early in the first book as well, in the Gardens of Everlasting Sleep, so her 'cave' is probably an extra-dimensional space that can be anywhere. Apu-Punchau is a big spoiler for *Urth*. It's one of those things Wolfe figured everybody was smart enough to figure out on their own, but then had to spell out explicitly when he found out we were not. >20 What is the ancient libraries that cyrcia tells Severian about It's an archive of important stuff from the distant past. It may be the same as the Library of Nessus, or it may be totally different. It has a guardian, which *may* be the thing that Severian awoke in the caves, in which case the mines at Saltus are the entrance to this archive. It seems like, at some point in the past, humans decided to get rid of their 'wild' nature, and if you like the idea that Saltus houses the archive, then the ape-men might be devolved humans, or their descendants anyway. > 21 What did the archon do with cyrcia? Was Severian's sex the punishment I'm not sure I understand the question. I think the Archon was a cruel husband to Cyriaca, and she seduced Severian of her own free will (Severian seems to be irresistible to women, which is something a lot of people complain about in these books). He ordered her executed for adultery, but Severian refused to carry out the order. > 22 What is a zoanthrop? And how do they "deliberately" give up their humanity like Ava states later? The world of Urth is a pretty terrible place — it's a fallen civilization where life is meaningless, because the sun is about to gutter out — and Zoanthropes are humans who can't stand living there, but don't want to commit suicide. They decide to undergo a surgery that remove their forebrain, the part that gives them human consciousness, and live as wild animals outside of society. > 23 What net was decuman weaving in the magic battle with Severian? Severian talks like he is jnbetwren two suns? Is Severian hallucinating? Decuman shot Severian with a blow dart from his staff, and Severian was hallucinating. Maybe. Probably. > 24 What is the two headed Man typhon strapped in? Why did water bring him back to life? Some sort of suspended animation apparatus; ancient technology from the height of Urth's past. Maybe the water rejuvenated him, or maybe Severian did (that's a question we always have to ask when the Claw is around). We learn more about Typhon in *The Book of the Long Sun* and *The Book of the Short Sun*. > 25 What killed little Severian? I assume some trap set up by typhon? Yep, he got shocked when he tried to steal the gold. > 26 Why wouldn't Severian take the oath? Would the claw bind him to keeping Typhons oath? I don't think the Claw had anything to do with it, I think he just recognized that Typhon was a tyrant. Severian also isn't great at keeping oaths, and is perhaps loathe to take them. > 27 Why did the buildings of Thrax turn to Severian's claw? I don't remember this! I'm just answering the ones I don't have to look up now. >28 What was talos telling Severian about "momentous events f the past cast their shadows down the ages, so now, when the sun is drawing toward the dark, our own shadows race into the past to trouble mankinds dreams" Not sure. This is literally something that happens several times in the books (and then, more explicitly, in the follow-on series). > 29 What was the cacogens test that Severian failed? I'd have to look up where in the books this is quoted, and who said it. Off the cuff theory: The cacogens are any beings of non-Urth origins, so they could include the Hierodules & Hierogrammates. Usually, when the book talks about a 'test', it's the test that determines whether the Autarch is worthy of being the Conciliator, and saving Urth from the death of the sun. This is dealt with in *Urth of the New Sun*. Since Severian contains all the previous Autarchs in himself, he may speaking as the previous Autarch when he talks about failing the test. He does that a lot: narrating the book in the persona of one of his multiple personalities, without letting us know he's doing it. Again, not sure, just talking out of my ass. >30 Was miles really Jonas returned and healed? Yes! Jonas' journey is from Android to man. Think of him as Pinocchio. His father, a 'craftsman', created him many thousands of years ago. He sailed the stars, and his ship crashed to Urth centuries in the past, after Urth had declined to the point where nobody could repair him. He replaced some of his parts with human biological matter, thus becoming more human (this happens with another robot in *Long Sun*). After he dies, Severian raises him from the dead, and he is a real boy at last. >31 Who was the redhead whipping Severian when he met up with the military? Did Severian rape her? Don't remember! He might have raped her, but I really doubt it. I don't think he's a serial rapist, I think Jolenta's very unfortunate nature was to inflame desire, and Severian genuinely regretted his actions after it was over. >32 What was the cart that Severian and the ascians were protecting? Why was it heading north? Why did they kill all the ascians? They're at war with the Ascians, who are controlled by the undines. I don't remember this specific incident, or what the importance of the cart was. One of the interesting things that Severian glosses over is that he was an Ascian slave for an entire year. >33 What was the pentadactyl that flew over Severian's column? It's an Ascian plane or war-animal of some sort. Remember that most technology in these books is referred to by older words. Pentadactyl just means 'five-finger'. Certainly makes me think of a Pteradactyl ('winged finger'). >34 Why did Vodalus want Severian to confirm that was the autarch? Was Vodalus trying to become him? Yes, he wanted to usurp (or just assassinate) the Autarch. He's an Ascian spy, as are a lot of people Severian interacts with (Thea, Hildegrin). I never really understood the significance of this part. It's possible that it just symbolizes Severian's growth, from admiring his Vodalus' dashing chivalry as a child, to ultimately realizing he's a cruel, foolish, self-serving traitor. > 35 Why was the autarch paralyzing the social order of Urth until the new sun? Good question. I'm sure there's an answer, but I don't recall it. It's possible that he is unable to do anything: he's emasculated, impotent in every sense of the word. > 36 What is a pteriopes? They are another of Hethor's space monsters. He gives them to Agia to help rescue Severian, because he is in love with her (the same reason he used other space monsters to try to kill Severian when Agia wanted that, instead). I think they look like giant harpies. >37 How does the green man go throughout time? Quantum tunneling? Beats me. He's from *really* far in the future, and I think this is one of those times when sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic. Severian can go through time, and perhaps his 'children' (that is, the human race he helped create) develop this ability as well. [*Continued...*]

  • Hertha Mueller

    >Political scientists tell us that democracies require a little faith. ...You have to assume that institutions will be fair and that leaders will act in the country’s best interest. >...The president is right that they don’t believe. But he’s wrong to take credit for it — and wrong to suggest that there’s much that can be done. There's a lot that can be done and needs to be done, it just won't be easy. For "big business," they're hard to trust when they believe things like this: http://www.nytimes.com/1970/09/13/archives/a-friedman-doctrine-the-social-responsibility-of-business-is-to.html >The Social Responsibility Of Business Is to Increase Its Profits http://www.huffingtonpost.com/george-mcgraw/nestle-chairman-peter-brabeck-water_b_3150150.html >Human beings have no right to water http://www.nytimes.com/roomfordebate/2015/04/16/what-are-corporations-obligations-to-shareholders/a-duty-to-shareholder-value >The leading statement of the law's view on corporate social responsibility goes back to Dodge v. Ford Motor Co, a 1919 decision that held that "a business corporation is organized and carried on primarily for the profit of the stockholders." That case — in which Henry Ford was challenged by shareholders when he tried to reduce car prices at their expense — also established that "it is not within the lawful powers of a board of directors to shape and conduct the affairs of a corporation for the merely incidental benefit of shareholders and for the primary purpose of benefiting others." >Despite contrary claims by some academics and Occupy Wall Street-type partisans, this remains the law today. A 2010 decision, for example, eBay Domestic Holdings Inc. v. Newmark, held that corporate directors are bound by "fiduciary duties and standards" which include "acting to promote the value of the corporation for the benefit of its stockholders." https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/maximizing-shareholder-value-the-goal-that-changed-corporate-america/2013/08/26/26e9ca8e-ed74-11e2-9008-61e94a7ea20d_story.html >Investors in IBM’s shares, by contrast, have fared much better. IBM makes up the biggest portion of the benchmark Dow Jones industrial average and has helped drive that index to record highs. >...It used to be a given that the interests of corporations and communities ... were closely aligned. But no more. Across the United States, as companies continue posting record profits, workers face high unemployment and stagnant wages. >Driving this change is a deep-seated belief that took hold in corporate America a few decades ago and has come to define today’s economy — that a company’s primary purpose is to maximize shareholder value. >The belief that shareholders come first is not codified by statute. Rather, it was introduced by a handful of free-market academics in the 1970s and then picked up by business leaders and the media until it became an oft-repeated mantra in the corporate world. >Together with new competition overseas, the pressure to respond to the short-term demands of Wall Street has paved the way for an economy in which companies are increasingly disconnected from the state of the nation, laying off workers in huge waves, keeping average wages low and threatening to move operations abroad in the face of regulations and taxes. >...“The shift in what employers think of as their role not just in the community but [relative] to their workforce is quite radical, and I think it has led to the last two jobless recoveries,” said Ron Hira, an associate professor of public policy at the Rochester Institute of Technology. >The change can be seen in statements from IBM’s leaders over the years. When he was IBM’s president and chief executive, Thomas J. Watson Jr., son of the company’s founder, spoke explicitly about balancing a company’s interests with the country’s. Current chief executive Virginia Rometty has pledged to follow a plan called the “2015 Road Map” in which the primary goal is to dramatically raise the company’s earnings-per-share figure, a metric favored by Wall Street. http://www.nytimes.com/2007/09/15/business/15atlas.html >The book is “Atlas Shrugged,” Ayn Rand’s glorification of the right of individuals to live entirely for their own interest. >For years, Rand’s message was attacked by intellectuals whom her circle labeled “do-gooders,” who argued that individuals should also work in the service of others. Her book was dismissed as an homage to greed. Gore Vidal described its philosophy as “nearly perfect in its immorality.” >But the book attracted a coterie of fans, some of them top corporate executives, who dared not speak of its impact except in private. When they read the book, often as college students, they now say, it gave form and substance to their inchoate thoughts, showing there is no conflict between private ambition and public benefit. >“I know from talking to a lot of Fortune 500 C.E.O.’s that ‘Atlas Shrugged’ has had a significant effect on their business decisions, even if they don’t agree with all of Ayn Rand’s ideas,” said John A. Allison, the chief executive of BB&T, one of the largest banks in the United States. >“It offers something other books don’t: the principles that apply to business and to life in general. I would call it complete,” he said. and do things like this: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2013-07-11/at-sears-eddie-lamperts-warring-divisions-model-adds-to-the-troubles >In January, eight years after Lampert masterminded Kmart’s $12 billion buyout of Sears in 2005, the board appointed him chief executive officer of the 120-year-old retailer. ... Since the takeover, Sears Holdings’ sales have dropped from $49.1 billion to $39.9 billion, and its stock has sunk 64 percent. ... “The way it’s being managed, it doesn’t work,” says Mary Ross Gilbert, a managing director at investment bank Imperial Capital. “They’re going to continue to deteriorate.” >Plagued by the realities threatening many retail stores, Sears also faces a unique problem: Lampert. Many of its troubles can be traced to an organizational model the chairman implemented five years ago, an idea he has said will save the company. Lampert runs Sears like a hedge fund portfolio, with dozens of autonomous businesses competing for his attention and money. An outspoken advocate of free-market economics and fan of the novelist Ayn Rand, he created the model because he expected the invisible hand of the market to drive better results. If the company’s leaders were told to act selfishly, he argued, they would run their divisions in a rational manner, boosting overall performance. >Instead, the divisions turned against each other—and Sears and Kmart, the overarching brands, suffered. Interviews with more than 40 former executives, many of whom sat at the highest levels of the company, paint a picture of a business that’s ravaged by infighting as its divisions battle over fewer resources. (Many declined to go on the record for a variety of reasons, including fear of angering Lampert.) https://books.google.com/books?id=zIO3BgAAQBAJ&pg=PT10&lpg=PT10&source=bl&ots=TAr4mBYhOi&sig=uFhXs6ZjLuts2k7LpG9MKDiLtjw&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjN_K70xMDSAhXj5oMKHRBXBaUQ6AEINjAE#v=onepage&q&f=false >Nestle identified a large market in Africa for its infant formula. Without any regard for the prospective customer, Nestle, through mass media tactics, promoted this infant formula as the modern way a "loving parent" should feed a baby. Reports indicate that in some cases, mothers of dead babies place cans of formula at the graves to show that they cared to do the very best they could for their children; even though Nestle knows that the formula never could replace the natural immunities provided in breast milk and was therefore, a contributing factor in the causes of the babies' deaths. https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2015/09/how-wall-streets-bankers-stayed-out-of-jail/399368/ >The probes into bank fraud leading up to the financial industry’s crash have been quietly closed. Is this justice? https://cambridgeanalytica.org/news/press/1465 >But, like almost everything else in the politics of 2016, appearances were deceptive. Behind the scenes, Mr Trump’s aides used data in an innovative way. It raises unsettling questions and also throws down a gauntlet to the corporate world. >The issue revolves around a company called Cambridge Analytica, created by British data scientists ... and which is now mostly owned by the Mercer family, who are big Republican donors. >CA has built a franchise by promoting a proprietary technique known as “psychographs,” which tries to influence consumers, and voters, with micro-targeted messages designed around market data and psychological profiling. http://web.archive.org/web/20150901040354/http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/wireStory/clinton-quietly-discourage-biden-2016-bid-33374845 >...her team rolled out a string of high-profile endorsements in early-voting states and scheduled an onslaught of fundraisers across the country in the effort to ice a Biden bid before he even gets started. >Behind the scenes, they're pressuring donors and delegates to pledge their loyalty to Clinton. http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-election-biden-idUSKCN0QV01U20150826 >Biden's inner circle has been working vigorously to reach out to undecided donors, according to sources close to the Draft Biden Super PAC. A meeting with potential donors is set to occur after Labor Day. >On Monday and Tuesday, Reuters interviewed 13 political activists who are among the Democratic Party's top donors and bundlers. As recently as February, when initially contacted by Reuters, seven of them were undecided, though all have since thrown their support - and fundraising machines - behind Clinton. They literally kill babies and install fascist dictators in our country. If they had let Biden run, we would have won the cold war by now. Of course people don't trust them.

  • Zelma Ziemann

    This story is copy pasted from a book that I was shown by some relatives of mine in Hong Kong. I think the story is true and it took place some time in the late 80's. A man by the name of Sheng Ding was the chief engineer of a deep-sea fishing ship. When he was in Hong Kong, a friend invited him to consult a very famous fortune-teller skilled in the art of Chinese divination known as Tad-Ban-Shen-Suan, which requires one`s birth date and time, right down to the exact minute. The more accurate the information is, the more precise the divination will be. Sheng Ding felt that this art of divination, first devised by Shao Kang Jie in ancient China, was indeed remarkably accurate. The fortune-teller stated that Shen Ding`s father was born in the year of the dragon, and Sheng Ding`s mother was born in the year of the monkey. He also mentioned that Sheng Ding has three elder brothers and one younger sister. The above revelation indeed corresponded with the facts. The fortune-teller revealed that Sheng Ding`s mother passed away when he was ten years old. Sheng Ding was astonished because what the fortune-teller revealed was indeed true. His mother died of a certain illness when he was just ten years old. The fortune-teller proceeded to describe Sheng Ding`s own destiny: Sheng Ding`s livelihood was connected with water. Indeed, Sheng Ding sailed with a deep-sea fishing ship. When he turned thirty, he met a friend by the surname Xie and lost his money. Certainly, at the age of thirty, a friend with the surname Xie borrowed seven hundred thousand dollars in Taiwanese currency and disappeared. The most astonishing divination was the revelation of his girlfriend`s surname, Chang, and his monthly salary, which left Sheng dumbfounded. Finally, the fortune-teller got to Sheng Ding`s life span. The fortune-teller suddenly became silent. Sheng Ding was eager to know how long he was going to live. `It is best that you do not know,` replied the fortune-teller. `Long or short, it doesn`t matter to me. I can take it,` Sheng Ding said. The fortune-teller insisted on being silent about Sheng Ding`s life span. Sheng Ding exploded and said, `Look! I told you I don`t mind. People live and die. Long life, short life - so be it. Having a long life may not be a good thing. But I must know how long I am going to live or I`m not going to leave.` The fortune-teller was in a very difficult position, but Sheng Ding demanded to know. Finally, the fortune-teller picked up one of the books on divination. He flipped to the respective page and showed Sheng Ding what was written on it. The respective sentence stated, `You shall die at age thirty-seven.` Thirty-seven? Thirty-seven! Sheng Ding was shocked to learn of his life span. Sheng Ding was thirty-five, he thought to himself, and that meant he had another two years before he would leave the world for good. Judging from the accuracy of this fortune-teller, it seemed that his life would surely come to an end at that age. Sheng Ding claimed that he didn't mind. But his heart was pounding hard. Sheng Ding asked, `Is there a way I can change my fate?` `Everything is destined by divine will. You can change your destiny through gathering good merits. I can't help you.` `Doing good deeds?` `Yes.` `Just like the story of Liao Fan.` Sheng Ding had read that story. `Almost,` said the fortune-teller. `But is two years enough time for me to change my destiny?` said a worried Sheng Ding. The fortune-teller smiled and refused to comment. `Is there anyone in the world that can help change my destiny?` The fortune-teller said, `To my knowledge, this form of divination is extremely accurate. I am aware that one is able to change one`s destiny, but this is rarely possible. Perhaps you should look this person up and see if he can help you.` `Which person?` `A Buddhist monk, Sheng-yen Lu.` `Can he really change my destiny?` `Why not give it a try?` When Sheng Ding came to me, he did not mention his consultation with the fortune-teller in Hong Kong. He only forwarded a note stating that he wanted to know how long he would have to live. I said to him, `I never do readings to determine the length of one`s life.` `Why not? Isn`t it possible that we can find out about our marriage, our wealth, our children, our state of prosperity, and certainly our life-span?` `Well, you`re right in a way. But if I determine your life span and it turns out to be a short life, you`ll become frightened. To avoid unnecessary complications, I avoid going into it.` `Can you make an exception?` Sheng Ding requested. `No.` I replied. `Alright. Any age is a two-digit number. Perhaps you can determine the last digit of the age rather than the first digit, how about that?` I gave it some thought and felt that it was fair enough. The last digit would not give away the length of one`s life span, and was thus meaningless. But I was unclear why Sheng Ding requested to know the last digit of his age of death. I consulted the divination and wrote down the number seven. Sheng Ding looked at the number and said, `Seven. That`s precisely the number!` Sheng Ding then revealed he had consulted a fortune-teller in Hong Kong who had told him that he would live to the age of thirty-seven. He wanted to know how he could reverse this cycle and if I could change his fate. I told him, `I can give it a try.` I went into deep meditation. In my meditation, I saw a figure of Kuan Yin Bodhisattva dressed in a white robe, carrying a vial of elixir and a stalk of willow leaves in her hands. She appeared noble and at ease with herself. The Bodhisattva told me, `All you have to do is tell Sheng Ding to chant the Mantra of the White Robed Kuan Yin Bodhisattva twenty times per day, and there shall be deliverance. You don`t have to teach him how to recite it. He already knows how.` I came out of my meditation and said to Sheng Ding, `You do know how to chant a mantra.` `Nonsense!` Sheng Ding denied. `But the Bodhisattva says you do.` `The Bodhisattva must be joking! I have never chanted any mantra in my entire life.` `The White Robed Kuan Yin Bodhisattva told me that you know how to chant her mantra.` `Ah!` Sheng Ding was taken aback. He then related this story to me. It was ten years ago when Sheng Ding`s aunt passed away. Before she died, she gave him a painting of a portrait of the White Robed Kuan Yin Bodhisattva. The mantra of this Bodhisattva was written alongside the painting. His aunt had recited every word carefully to Sheng Ding and he had actually chanted the mantra correctly, with the right pronunciation. His aunt told him that the painting with the mantra has been kept and worshipped over a long period of time. The mantra was to be recited in the course of one`s lifetime, and should not be forgone. According to his aunt, the mantra was very magical. Sheng Ding kept this painting properly and recited the Mantra of the White Robed Kuan Yin Bodhisattva for a short period. After his aunt`s passing, he put the painting away and it did not see the light of day. He had since stopped chanting the mantra. I told Sheng Ding, `Hang up the piece of painting of the Bodhisattva immediately.` `Yes.` Sheng Ding answered. `Recite this Mantra of the White Robed Kuan Yin Bodhisattva twenty times a day.` `Yes.` `Do you need my coaching?` `It`s OK. I still remember how to chant this mantra.` Surprisingly, Sheng Ding was able to write down this mantra: When Sheng Ding returned home, he hanged his painting of the Bodhisattva on the wall and worshipped it with much reverence. In preparation for his daily chanting, he would clean his hands, light incense and prostrate before the image of the Bodhisattva before chanting the mantra. After completing his chanting, he would recite the dedication verses: May karmic hindrance and anxiety be removed. May wisdom and true realization be attained. May all transgression be eradicated completely. May I follow the path of Bodhisattva life after life. Sheng Ding added, `Kuan Yin Bodhisattva, please protect me from any fatality and offer me longevity.` At home, he could keep to the routine of his practice. But Sheng Ding was, after all, a traveling chief engineer with his deep-sea fishing ship. He spent most of his time away from home. Nonetheless, he taped a photo of the White Robed Bodhisattva at a corner of his cabin on board his ship. He continued his daily practice without fail. His friends sneered at him and thought he was superstitious, crazy, and had lost his mind. But Sheng Ding ignored them. Besides chanting the mantra, Sheng Ding would commit himself to charity work whenever possible. When he was thirty-seven, Sheng Ding`s fishing ship anchored at Hawaii before sailing to Guam the following day. That very night, Sheng Ding had a bad stomachache and was in great pain. When he was rushed to the emergency ward in the hospital, he was diagnosed with appendicitis and needed an operation right away. Under the circumstances, Sheng Ding had to stay behind at the Hawaii hospital. However, the ship was scheduled to Guam and could not wait for him. So the ship sailed on without Sheng Ding and would arrange to meet with him again after his surgery. Sadly, the ship sank on its journey to Guam when it encountered a heavy storm. None of the crew survived the tragedy. The ship with its load of crew sank without a trace. Despite rescue attempts from the shipping company to search the area with helicopters and other rescue ships, they could not locate the missing crew. It was as if they had all vanished into thin air. Because his illness required him to stay behind in Hawaii for surgery, Sheng Ding became the sole survivor of this tragedy. Since then, Sheng Ding developed a deep faith in the White Robed Kuan Yin Bodhisattva, and knew that the compassionate Bodhisattva would certainly answer the cries of all.

  • Lori Treutel

    Trump openly calls for the U.S to commit war crimes and advocates for the murder of innocent women and children. http://thinkprogress.org/politics/2015/12/15/3732671/trump-isis-kill-family-members/ http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/donald-trump-reiterates-desire-to-murder-terrorists-families-a6912496.html http://www.cnn.com/2015/12/02/politics/donald-trump-terrorists-families/ http://www.dailywire.com/news/3891/trumps-horrifying-anti-military-slur-last-nights-ben-shapiro/ http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2016/mar/3/donald-trump-says-hed-force-us-military-commit-war/ Trump doubles down after veterans speak out claiming U.S soldiers would not commit war crimes or torture children even if ordered to. Trump responds with, “They’re not going to refuse me. If I say do it, they’re going to do it.“ http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2016/mar/3/donald-trump-says-hed-force-us-military-commit-war/ http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2015/dec/17/rand-paul/rand-pauls-right-geneva-conventions-bar-donald-tru/ http://theweek.com/speedreads/610361/donald-trump-doubles-down-torture-war-crimes http://www.telesurtv.net/english/opinion/The-US-Military-Will-Commit-Donald-Trumps-War-Crimes-20160307-0011.html http://reason.com/blog/2016/03/03/donald-trump-says-military-wont-refuse-h http://www.rawstory.com/2016/03/a-retired-major-general-sets-trump-straight-after-he-advocates-war-crimes/ http://www.democracynow.org/2016/3/1/donald_trump_wants_to_commit_war Trump on torture: “Even if it doesn’t work they probably deserved it anyway.” http://www.cnn.com/2016/03/11/opinions/trump-wrong-on-american-torture/ http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/patrick-goodenough/trump-waterboarding-it-works-if-it-doesnt-work-they-deserve-it https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/nov/24/donald-trump-on-waterboarding-even-if-it-doesnt-work-they-deserve-it Trump renews calls for torture citing public executions and mass rape committed by ISIS promising for the U.S to do the same, “fighting fire with fire.” http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/trump-responds-istanbul-waterboarding-torture Trump says Geneva Conventions a problem and needs to be changed since, US soldiers are to afraid to do their job due to laws which outline the definition of war crimes. http://www.politico.com/blogs/2016-gop-primary-live-updates-and-results/2016/03/donald-trump-geneva-conventions-221394?cmpid=sf Trump threatens to shoot down Russian planes starting war with Russia. http://www.newsweek.com/trump-says-us-should-shoot-russian-planes-if-putin-calls-fail-454902 Trump says he would shoot Iranian ships out of the water starting a war with Iran. http://www.cnn.com/2016/09/09/politics/donald-trump-iran/ http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2016/09/09/trump_if_iran_harasses_us_ships_they_will_be_shot_out_of_the_water.html Trump says he, "won’t rule out” using nuclear weapons in Europe. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-elections/donald-trump-refuses-to-rule-out-using-nuclear-weapons-in-attack-on-europe-a6961101.html Trump calls for a global nuclear rearmament. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2016/04/06/should-more-countries-have-nuclear-weapons-donald-trump-thinks-so/ http://time.com/4276960/trump-wants-to-free-the-nuclear-genie/ Trump says he would declare a World War as President. http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/donald-trump-bill-o-reilly-declare-world-war-scenario-article-1.2712682 http://thinkprogress.org/world/2016/07/14/3798566/trump-muslim-blame-nice-france/ http://crooksandliars.com/2016/07/trump-oreilly-declare-world-war-iii Trump's solution for high gas prices is to violate The Geneva Convention by invading several of America's allies in the Middle East and Africa unprovoked to forcibly seize the oil fields for himself. http://blogs.abcnews.com/george/2011/04/donald-trumps-solution-on-gas-prices-get-tough-with-saudi-arabia-seize-oil-fields-in-libya-and-iraq.html http://www.forbes.com/sites/williampentland/2011/04/23/dumbest-guy-in-the-room-donald-trumps-energy-policy/#700458db29b9 When asked for clarification about the above mentioned plan to steal land from multiple nations on two different continents Trump responded with, “We’re not stealing anything. We’re taking.“ http://content.time.com/time/specials/packages/article/0,28804,2068227_2068229_2068345,00.html Trump says during debate he wants to invade Syria with 30,000 soldiers. http://www.cnn.com/2016/03/11/politics/donald-trump-30000-troops-isis/ Trump runs TV add promising to seize foreign oil fields. http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2016/01/04/donald_trumps_first_tv_ad_of_the_2016_campaign.html Trump promises mandatory Death Penalty for anyone accused of murdering a police officer despite no legal grounds to impose that. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-politics/wp/2015/12/10/donald-trump-wants-the-death-penalty-for-those-who-kill-police-officers/ http://www.cnn.com/2015/12/10/politics/donald-trump-police-officers-death-penalty/ Trump thinks lethal injection is “too comfortable” Wants to devise a more painful way to execute people. http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2016/03/02/3755065/trump-criminal-justice/ The man Trump hired to write his books for him says he honestly believes Trump would start a nuclear war if president. http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2016/07/25/donald-trumps-ghostwriter-tells-all Anne Frank's sister (now 86 years old) says that Trump reminds her of Hitler. http://www.cnn.com/2016/01/27/politics/anne-frank-donald-trump-adolf-hitler/ North Korean Dictator Kim Jong-Un endorses Donald Trump. http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2016/05/north-korea-praises-wise-politician-donald-trump http://nationalreport.net/kim-jong-un-endorses-donald-trump/ http://www.reuters.com/article/us-northkorea-usa-trump-idUSKCN0YN35S http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/north-korean-state-media-endorses-donald-trump-article-1.2655453 http://www.vanityfair.com/news/2016/06/donald-trump-north-korea Russian leader with history of human rights abuses Vladimir Putin endorses Trump. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/donald-trump-finds-unlikely-support-from-vladimir-putin-a7008601.html http://www.thepoliticalinsider.com/vladimir-putin-just-made-a-massive-donald-trump-announcement/ Imam of known Islamic Terrorist (Omar Mateen) endorses Trump. http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/283218-orlando-shooters-imam-is-pro-trump K.K.K endorses Trump. http://www.rawstory.com/2016/04/a-lot-of-what-he-believes-we-believe-kkk-grand-imperial-wizard-endorses-trump/ http://www.snopes.com/2016/05/02/klan-leader-endorses-trump/ Convicted Neo-Nazi Terrorist Don Black endorses Trump. http://www.businessinsider.com/trump-helping-white-supremacist-website-2015-12 http://www.nationalmemo.com/an-extremely-partial-list-of-white-supremacists-who-support-donald-trump/ Chinese Communist Party endorses Trump. http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2016/04/19/china-endorses-donald-trump.html Serbian War Criminal Vojislav Seselj endorses Trump. http://reverbpress.com/world/trump-just-won-an-endorsement-from-war-criminal-bill-clinton-tried-to-kill-video/ http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-01-05/balkan-war-crimes-suspect-calls-for-serbs-in-u-s-to-back-trump

  • Frank Jaskolski

    Mistveil, capital of Sevendor. **Lunch** The diversity of the empire shines through the lunch options you have. Will you eat the subtle and sweet Elven bread on sale in the High quarter? It might lighten your purse a few gold. Will you try the gnome restaurants that serves seemingly random combinations of food? They're willing to trade a meal for a story they've never heard before. You can always try the mage-meals that differ wildly from stall to stall. They'll run anywhere from a few silver to 10 gold, but the cost is well worth it. I've had meals that made me pleasantly drunk but not impaired, one that gave relief from bad knees, and even one that induced a lucid dream that night. **Allergy concerns** Due to recent...conflicts with the druids of Sevendor,, all non-historical trees have been cut down, and owners of flowers, plants and lawns are to have them magically warded by a licensed enchanter. An allergic guest can smell a warded night-blossom in full bloom and not even sniffle. **Criminal Activity** Mundane Crime is very rare. Ever since the Wizard-King's implementation of Divinationists, forensic thaumaturgists, and hemotologists into the Protectors of the Veil crime has been dramatically halted. Sometimes even in advance of wrong-doing. The most local guards have to deal with are drunken brawls and crimes of passion. If you are ever approached by a someone seeking to take your coin, let them. You'll have it back within a fortnight. If you are attacked by a murderer, you can call out-even in a low voice- "Green King protect me." That guards will quickly scry your area and come to your aid. In the event of your death, or maiming, the cost of reviving or healing you will be put on the criminal and his family. The criminal will likely be inprisoned and work to repay for the healing. Assaults or murders by magic users can lead to the loss of license the first offense, and on the second, or if they are unlisenced, their magic will be burned from their mind by the Cult of Nethys. **What not to bring** Do not under any circumstances bring spell books or magic items containing or holy symbols of gods whose portfolio contains: cannibalism, disease, necromancy, or chaos. While certain necromantic spells are used by the forensic thaumaturgists to solve crimes, the public is widely disallowed from using necromancy. Disease is similarly discouraged and due to the organized nature of our beautiful nation, gods or spells that promote anarchy are banned. Beyond that,the common laws of Abadar apply. **Housing** If money is not an issue, I highly recommend staying in the Sparks and Spells inn in the Mage Quarter. On top of being near the exquisitely crafted Green Keep, our wise king's home, you can watch the light show from the magical discharges of the Enchanter's guild, freely observe Magus duels without paying admission, hear the occasional song from the Bard's college, and then sleep in total quiet in your silenced room. Of course you'll be near the most exotic of magical goods and services come morning, and yoi can even clap your hands to make unseen servants clean, cook or turn theMage-bulb off and on. **Nobles, guilds, and churches** As long as you are just visiting and buying, there are very very few people you must see. Maybe just the gate guards, the magical tester, and the Truthsayer when you enter the city. If you are selling... well visiting the Ministry of Commerce might be best. The priests of Abadar know far more than a humble tour guide. **Food Poisoning** A bad meal? Nethys above, say it isn't so. Come, we'all get you some Soothe-Syrup from the Chirgeon Alchemists. If you're wanting an instant remedy, you can visit either the clerics or buy an extract from the Alchemists. I do warn, instant does not mean free. But you can compensate that cost by recording your illness with either of these groups, and reporting the vender you bought the food from. The Green King requires all vendors to have the clerics purify their ingredients at the start of the week, and one found violating that ordinance will have to pay for your treatment as part of their fine. **Sweets** The High Quarter has the best sweets. Chocolate from northern Tien, ice cream made from the snow above the High quarter, yogurt, tea... ahh I could go on all day. But if you're as generous with your sweets as you are with your housing, I know a master cook- a former alchemist who traveled through Elysium- and came back knowing how to make the food of the gods: Ambrosia. He served it once to the king himself, it's said. **Weapons** Ah, weapons. The Black Quarter has you covered, friend. Don't be discouraged by the name; it has more to do with soot than reputation. If you're looking for a longsword, you can find hundreds among the common smiths. You can find more exotic weapons from the Tieniese venders, and cheap, mass produced weapons from the Nessian caravans. Crossbows are allowed, but the seller will mark down your name and status to give to the Ministry of War. If you have the money, you can also buy some magical trinket from the Enchanters guild. Look see, I have an animated tattoo. In case of danger, this little knight will pull off of me and defend me while I make my escape. If you're looking for a weapon to astound your family with, well, the enchanters guild does take commissions from The public. Be warned, some noble families bankrupt themselves trying to outdo each other's mageblades. **Do not enter** I generally don't go in the Low Quarter. You've got too much bad-blood in one place. Half-Elven noble bastards, Half-Orcs, Dwarves, swift-fingered halflings, Gnomes desperately trying new substances to stave off bleaching... I mean during the day time it's fine, but... house Corrino rules in all but name the Gray Streets. Since Abadar doesn't forbid blackmarkets explicitly, the unregistered markets have dubious legality, thus the Gray Streets. The inquisition one time turned their gaze onto them, and for weeks the morticians were busy. I think the inquisition took a Pyrrhic victory, as at the end of those weeks two of the Corrino breweries burned down due to "a mistake with fermentation using exotic substances." It's a good place for Slumming or if you need a discount magic item, if you're into that, but don't ask management too many questions, don't get caught with that cheap wand in your pocket and when you hear the half-orcs start to bicker with dwarves, it's probably time to leave. **Prostitution** There are many houses of leisure in the city. They actually get their own subdistrict in the High and Mage quarters. Look for the blue ribbons in the High Quarter, they'll lead you to the most beautiful men and women you've ever seen. The Ministry of Commerce and Love bicker over who gets to tax this section, but the Ministry of Public Health is lord here. They require the madames and magistrates to have their employees screened bi-weekly for disease, and all visitors are given "discrepancy rings" to help prevent disease and unwanted children. They make em pay for the privilege too. I've heard that premier client's rings also mask their identity. The Mage quarter's section is open only at night. Those looking for more... exotic entertainments go here. Follow the animated illusions of nymphs along the walls, and you'll reach the subdistrict. Here you can find transmutation, enchantment, conjuration and illusion bent towards more... carnal needs. The whole area is under the effect the Discrepency Rings mimic. In the Low Quarter, whorehouses spring up around law enforcement like weeds around cobblestones. The Gray Streets are rumored to offer similar services as the Mage Quarter does, and it was likely the rumors about necromancy that attracted the inquisition in the first place. **Law** If there is a discrepancy as to who did a crime, a trial shall occur. What I mean by this is if our government's mages cannot determine by Truthsayer or Memory-diving -the accused has the option to submit to this, guards that were witnesses of the crime always have their memory searched- who committed the crime the accused and accuser will be held in judicial housing and an agent will be appointed by the city or selected by the accused/accuser to gather witnesses. Evidence will be examined and reported on in court by two separate teams who worked independently on their reports. Witnesses will describe what they have seen while under the scrutiny of a Truthsayer, then the agents can question the opposition's witnesses. Then either a judge or a panel of citizens of equal number from each district will weigh in judgement. **Entertainment** By far the most popular entertainment in Mistveil is the Arcane Arena. A wonder of magical innovation, it was worked in by over 70 enchanters including the Green King himself. It can simulate any terrain, it can watch far away locations, and conjure forth great beasts for gladiators to fight. One of my favorite fights was a duel between the Magus Pieretto III of Isha and Magus Lyra Cavecrawler. It was meant to be a re-enactment of the battle between the Storm-king of the Shattered Shore pirates and Inquisitor Raev i'l Vadfar, but the actors themselves were rivals. When the boats launched on the waters of the arena, Lyra froze the water around Pieretto's boat when everyone knows the real Raev opened up by burning the Storm-king's sails. Ah but I blather too long. You can watch the fight yourself at the Illusionist's theater.

  • Mabel Batz

    [](/twismile)In my tiredness, I ended up re-reading Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality. Actually, I listened to the audio version, but I can't say re-listened because I didn't listen it the first time. I don't know what the proper word is. Harry Potter is the only book series I've ever read. I love the world and story but don't care much for the characters. In HPMOR I love the world and characters but can't say I love the story. Overall I seem to enjoy this version more because of a lot of personal appeal points. [](/sp) [](/twiponder)Undoubtedly one of the main appeals of Harry Potter is its world. It's exceedingly interesting and creative and makes you wish you could be a wizard and study magic. At first this fic is a kind of wish fulfillment for those with inquisitorial minds, having a character that asks all the obvious questions and tries to figure out the world's rules before the story starts taking precedence. One of the things I love about fanworks is that they don't have to care about standard literary practices, which I don't believe in anyway. This fic is really weird, it often interrupts scenes to explain some scientific experiment or principle, dialog is very loaded and if your suspension of disbelief doesn't accept that characters can talk like that, it's not going to work for you. Plot details can be introduced because it shows the characters acting reasonable but they don't always come into play. Characters can evaluate themselves and others in terms of literary tropes. Certain things early on can put off people who dismiss them as poor writing, not knowing that they will be explained much later on. The thematic goal of the story is not apparent for pretty much the first half of it and a lot of it is different than what most media aim for. These things are all easily condemnable for not obeying storytelling principles but they are also what makes it a unique work to me. It has a personal style that is memorable, a common attribute of my favorite pieces of media. [](/sp) [](/twibeam)The main reason I love the characters in HPMOR is Harry himself. In the book series I find him a cliché main character who goes through an annoying teenager phase, but in HPMOR he's my favorite kind of main character: someone whose personality affects everything and everyone around him, and it's wonderful to see how the world reacts to his eccentricities. [](/sp) [](/twipbbt)He is also the first obvious point of contention that people will find with the fic. The premise of the story may lead one to believe that Harry is only a science-obsessed genius because of his upbringing, and condemn him as a lame self-insert. But as is expected from a fanfic, it pretty much requires that the reader has read the original. It deliberately uses your knowledge to mess with your expectations. Thus if you remember a certain plot point from the original books you should immediately have a guess as to what's going on with Harry. It's also easy to think that everything Harry says early on is supposed to be right because he's the smartest character and he argues things well, but that's not giving the author enough credit. The story does go on to show that there are many conflicting points of view that are neither absolutely right nor absolutely wrong. When a smart character explains themselves, that is not the author preaching his point of view to the reader, ~~HE IS LITERALLY VOLDEMORT~~ it is the character explaining themselves. Complex characters have a point of view and many reasons to believe in them. When you have characters of varying intelligence they'll not always be able to argue well, because people are not always able to argue well. But that does not mean that smarter characters are always right, that simplistic rule breaks down soon enough. [](/sp) [](/rtwiponder)The "not a 11-year old" argument holds more water for the other kids, who are more like anime teenagers than 11-year olds. But I'm OK with that since I don't like 11-year olds and my mental image when reading is an anime anyway. [](/sp) [](/twipride)I do love the depth that other characters get, not only going through their own development, but also having Harry develop his perception of them. Dumbledore's been through some real shit and it shows. McGonagall takes the spotlight from Hagrid and Draco takes the spotlight from Ron. Hermione gets her own inner conflicts to deal with. [](/sp) [](/takealetter)The second thing I love is how it deals with the four houses. In the original the main trio were all in Gryffindor, so we only got that point of view. Draco was supposedly struggling with being pressured to be evil but we seldom saw that. HPMOR really delves into what it means to be in each house and what it means to choose between them, how they can be good or bad and how they can come together. It's lovely to see characters diss Gryffindor and have nice characters in Slytherin. There are many secondary characters from all houses that just get along, and that gives us many points of view. I only wish we could've seen what happens after the story ends since a few things remained open-ended. [](/sp) [](/twisad)I guess that is my main complaint, that it left me wanting more. The _climax_ was immensely satisfying by highlighting the complete opposite of a _deus ex machina_, but beyond that there are quite a lot of loose ends in terms of character development/Hogwarts/magic research that leaves me unsatisfied, although not nearly as much as the original's ending. And I'm not sure a sequel fic by another author would fill that hole. My other main complaint is Hermione, sadly. I should like inferiority complexes for their relatability, but whereas Harry seems to have rubbed off on all his other friends and made them think a bit like him, that wasn't the case with her, and the result is that she often just _reacts_ to everything in the way you'd expect her to, so she feels a bit like an NPC. I was often not enthused by her scenes. [](/sp) [](/rarishock)Another thing that puts people off is the tone. Being more realistic, this is not a children's book, and an early mention of rape will certainly push some readers away. I am picky about fanworks staying true to the original tone, but I make an exception for this fanfic. It doesn't go too far into grimdark territory to put me off, but more importantly it sets its own tone well and that also includes lighthearted bits and a sense of humor. [](/sp) [](/flutterwhoa)These lighthearted bits might also be an off-putting factor if they don't appeal to you, because I find it very anime-style, which is why my mental image looks like that. There _are_ anime references but it's also in the way characters are written and fights are choreographed. So if you despise anime with a fiery passion this is not for you either. [](/sp) [](/rtwiright)The story's themes also seem tailored to appeal to me. For one, they subvert some themes from the original work to deal with transhumanism. It also explores cynicism and how being excessively cynical can make you literally Voldemort, which is pretty in line with how I view cynicism. It also tosses in some cynicism about cynicism which tickles my fancy. I relate to the way smart characters create mental models of less smart characters and sometimes treat them as NPCs thanks to my experience reading internet comments, and it's something that interests me because it conflicts with my constant sondering. Everyone is supposedly leading a life as complex and unique as mine, yet they behave as NPCs posting generic dumb comments completely unaware of their environment and how other people think, how does that work? [](/sp) [](/twisquint)I like all the trope awareness, but it sometimes backfires. For all the characters act trope aware and avoid falling into certain pitfalls, you may feel that at times they miss the obvious and their cleverness may be too much at the author's whim. In other words, if at some points you know that a character is making bad choices and you don't buy into their reasoning, the illusion of rationality will shatter and you may find that the characters are just arbitrarily smart depending on where the author wants the story to go. I am, of course, talking about [all that Quirrel did that would make him obviously Voldemort to anyone but Harry. The benefit of having him present throughout the whole story is that we get an insight into his character that we didn't get into the original work, and he's an amazingly fleshed out villain for it. The whole story builds up to how threatening he is by showing us what Harry can do with his limitations. But it does come at the cost of knowing the protagonist is being duped for so long.](/spoiler) The fanfic aspect I praised earlier also backfires a bit, as some parts do drag on (Padma/ghost scene) and some parts of the later story are rather uninteresting, making it on average less compelling than the fun sciency/chaotic start. [](/sp) [](/hmmm)In the end, it's an amazingly unique and engaging read, provided that it appeals to you the same way it appeals to me. It's especially fun to re-read due to all the foreshadowing and memorable things, though that can also backfire when you see characters making mistakes and wishing you could have lots of "alternate path" fics.

  • Layla Feeney

    During the four-year battle for Aleppo, the world was flooded with images of the toll it took on the civilians trapped between the Syrian regime and opposition militias. As the siege tightened, the ancient city was dubbed Syria’s Stalingrad, enduring relentless street fighting, indiscriminate barrel bombings and deadly “triple-taps” — that killed civilians, killed those who came to rescue the wounded, and finally destroyed the hospitals that the few survivors could reach. It was a siege smothered in myth and propaganda. With few independent journalists left to document the collapse, it had to be archived on social media — immediate, unfiltered and often inescapable. In the deluge of those images, one voice cut through the noise, like a clarion call broadcasting our failure to protect the weakest. It belonged to Bana al-Abed, a precocious young girl whose Twitter feed — managed by her mother — captured in painful granularity the confusion and fear of being a child caught in a war. Each tweet felt like a frame in a horror film — one in which her followers worried constantly she might be killed. She became for many the face of Aleppo. And here she is in front of me, wide-eyed in a shopping mall in Ankara with her mother Fatemah as my lunch guest. “My name is Bana, I’m seven years old . . . This is my last moment to live or die.” So wrote Bana on December 13, amid one of the heaviest bombing campaigns. Three days later, as the bombing drew closer, she wrote: “Please save us now.” A few weeks earlier she had posted: “I am sick now, I have no medicine, no home, no clean water. This will make me die even before a bomb kill me.” In those terrible weeks, the Twitter feed @AlabedBana went viral. It brought fame: JK Rowling, author of the Harry Potter books, shared Bana’s tweets with her millions of followers. It brought danger: for the Syrian regime, it was a daily reminder of the suffering they wrought upon civilians, marking her first for character assassination and finally, her mother felt, for death. Eventually, it brought her to Turkey. Now, she is one of 3m Syrians here, after the largest human exodus since the partition of India. An object of fascination — child, social media legend and witness to war — she is also a pint-sized prop in a geopolitical propaganda game. Both, I explain to Fatemah, are good reasons for me to have lunch with them. But, as any parent will tell you, choosing a place to take a seven-year-old for lunch is fraught with peril: too formal, and the child loses interest; too adventurous, and the child is put off. For advice, I ask a six-year-old, Mira, the daughter of a colleague. We have settled on the Kent Mall in Ankara — what it lacks in fine dining, it makes up for with a huge playground — and ice cream. Bana approves of the choice. Her hands are swiftly entwined with Mira’s, who I have brought along to help break the ice. We walk through the shiny mall, the sort of place young Turks so love, struggle with an elevator and eventually reach a cul-de-sac that leads to Gelato Ice & Caffé, which has pop music on the stereo and a decor that tries — and fails — to evoke a “Ruby Tuesday” in the American Midwest. Our table is a latter-day Tower of Babel. Bana speaks Arabic and a little English; her new friend, Mira, speaks Turkish and English; Bana’s mother speaks near-fluent English and Arabic; I speak neither Turkish nor Arabic; and my Arabic translator, Jihad (who jokes later that he better change his name if he wants to move to America), is so excited to meet Bana that he often forgets to translate. *** We order quickly: a burger, with onion rings and a Coke for her; a mushroom pizza and a chicken wings for mum; fajitas for me; manti (cheesy ravioli, covered in yoghurt) for her new friend, Mira. Simple and unexciting — but a feast compared to the fare in her months under siege. For many months, Bana has been an Anne Frank-like figure, a visceral, online diary of the rawest of human emotions. But she has also been accused of being a tool of propaganda. In the version of the Aleppo siege propagated by pro-Assad groups, including the machinery of RT (formerly Russia Today) and cyber trolls, Assad was a brave leader fighting terrorists and defending the world from Isis. Bana’s story helped puncture that lie and for months her mother has been hounded by people claiming they were faking their tweets, that Bana spoke no English, and was being manipulated to generate fake sympathy for terrorists. There were death threats and the fear of being singled out for execution. Behind this global profile is a girl we know so little about, other than the fact that she loves Harry Potter and didn’t want to die. She may have captured the inhumanity of war for millions, but she remained veiled, a totemic image of every child in war. In possibly a first for Lunch with the FT, we strike a deal — we’ll eat something first and talk, and then, we’ll all share ice cream. *** Bana is proud of her English, which she speaks like any child talking in a foreign-language would — sometimes haltingly, sometimes in a rush of words unconnected by grammar. But she is thoughtful right now. She says it was her and her mother’s idea to go on Twitter and that she wanted to share a picture of herself with the world. That first tweet, on September 24 2016, was three words long. “I need peace,” it read. After dozens of television interviews in the early days, many of her sentences sound like stock phrases (“I want to help the children of Aleppo”; “I want to be the voice of children of Syria”). We switch to the translator, hoping she will open up more. I ask her if she understands how different her life has been to those of other children her age. She thinks for a while, and then delivers a rush of words, tangled up in emotion. “In Aleppo, I couldn’t feel like a child,” she says. “I couldn’t sleep, I couldn’t find a safe place. There were bombs dropping overhead, in the morning, afternoon, night. I couldn’t find any food — biscuits, or normal food, like normal children. We were always worried — when will a bomb come on our heads? I wanted to go to school, but my school was bombed.” She and her family had a particularly close call. Their kitchen was destroyed one evening in a bombing raid when they happened to be taking shelter in the living room. Her mother shows me photos on her phone of a shattered room, and her children covered in dust and dirt. The timestamp said November 27 7.55pm. She describes what happened. “My husband and his brother and my mother-in-law were sitting with Bana, there is a family conversation. Suddenly, the rockets came down, like birds in the sky. I was in the kitchen, I was cooking. Thank God I just moved for two seconds from the kitchen.” Bana starts to tell me about her friends. “I had a friend, her name was Yasmin, and I had another friend, her name was Fatma, and we were the same age and we played with each other all the time . . . My friend Yasmin is dead. Fatma’s still alive, but we cannot contact her,” she says. Yasmin’s death inspired one of her most powerful tweets, with a picture of a young girl’s bloodied and lifeless face. “Oh dear world, I am crying tonight, this is my friend killed by a bomb tonight. I can’t stop crying.” It seems like a cruel moment for our food to arrive. Our waitress bustles around, bringing Bana her burger, Fatemah her pizza and wings. The wings are spicy, and Fatemah is pleased. Bana’s burger is too big to fit into her mouth. She loves it, she loves the onion rings, she loves her Coke. I notice she’s missing a few teeth. She counts them out in English — seven — and then flashes a big grin. I remember a tweet of hers from October, when she smiled into the camera, holding a tooth that had come loose. The next morning, she tweeted again. “The tooth fairy is afraid of the bombing here, it run away to its hole. When the war finishes, it will come.” Fatemah explains how the tweeting worked. She would ask Bana how she felt, or what she was thinking, and would type them down for her. Even towards the end, they had solar panels to charge their phones and they could sometimes pick up a mobile phone signal from government-held Aleppo, or from the satellite internet provided by Turkish and other NGOs. Bana has her mouth full, so I speak with Fatemah. She’s 27, and had been training to become a lawyer when the war came to Aleppo. I have to ask her how she feels about her child being used “as a tool for propaganda” — first for the anti-government forces and now by the Turkish government. When the Turkish government brokered the chaotic retreat of fighters and civilians from east Aleppo, they found Bana and her family in a makeshift camp in the northwestern Syrian province of Idlib, and flew them by helicopter to Ankara. She and her two younger brothers ended up in front of the cameras, sitting on President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s lap. Now, even as Turkey sends in its own military, arms opposition fighters and demands the overthrow of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, they are presented as symbols of his magnanimity.

  • Vito Rolfson

    Are...are you okay? You seem like you're going to have a stroke if I continue replying. If you really want me to be pedantic... > don't make me dig up another twenty definitions just to make the point that landmass doesn't mean what you're implying it means. A "landmass" is a large body of land. You're ignoring the crucial bit of the sentence: continuous. Europe continues into Asia and Africa. To visualize: If you had a map of the world, and used the 'fill' option in Paint, and filled in Europe, all of Europe, Africa, and Asia would also fill in, because they are continuously connected. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Continent#Definitions_and_application > By convention, "continents are understood to be large, continuous, discrete masses of land, ideally separated by expanses of water."[2] Many of the seven most commonly recognized continents identified by convention are not discrete landmasses separated completely by water. The Wikipedia article itself recognizes that the definition of 'continent' and what we consider to be continents are actually not properly the same; our commonly understood definition of continent goes against what we actually think of as the continents. > motherfucker how about you give me ONE definition that even comes close to supporting anything you're saying I already did, the link to the Afro-Eurasia article, which discusses all of this. But if you want more links talking about the controversy, here you go: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Continent#Separation > The ideal criterion that each continent be a discrete landmass is commonly relaxed due to historical conventions. **Of the seven most globally recognized continents, only Antarctica and Australia are completely separated from other continents by ocean. Several continents are defined not as absolutely distinct bodies but as "more or less discrete masses of land".**[10] Asia and Africa are joined by the Isthmus of Suez, and North and South America by the Isthmus of Panama. In both cases, there is no complete separation of these landmasses by water (disregarding the Suez Canal and Panama Canal, which are both narrow and shallow, as well as being artificial). Both these isthmuses are very narrow compared to the bulk of the landmasses they unite. > > North America and South America are treated as separate continents in the seven-continent model. However, they may also be viewed as a single continent known as America or the Americas. This viewpoint was common in the United States until World War II, and remains prevalent in some Asian six-continent models.[11] This remains the more common vision in Latin American countries, Spain, Portugal, France, Italy and Greece, where they are taught as a single continent. > > The criterion of a discrete landmass is completely disregarded if the continuous landmass of Eurasia is classified as two separate continents: Europe and Asia. Physiographically, Europe and South Asia are peninsulas of the Eurasian landmass. However, Europe is widely considered a continent with its comparatively large land area of 10,180,000 square kilometres (3,930,000 sq mi), while South Asia, with less than half that area, is considered a subcontinent. **The alternative view—in geology and geography—that Eurasia is a single continent results in a six-continent view of the world. Some view separation of Eurasia into Europe and Asia as a residue of Eurocentrism: "In physical, cultural and historical diversity, China and India are comparable to the entire European landmass, not to a single European country. [...]."[12] However, for historical and cultural reasons, the view of Europe as a separate continent continues in several categorizations.** > > **If continents are defined strictly as discrete landmasses, embracing all the contiguous land of a body, then Asia, Europe and Africa form a single continent which may be referred to as Afro-Eurasia. This produces a four-continent model consisting of Afro-Eurasia, America, Antarctica and Australia.** http://basementgeographer.com/there-are-seven-continents-or-six-or-five-or-four-or-eight-oh-never-mind/ http://www.universetoday.com/45468/how-many-continents-are-there/ > Not everyone on this planet is in agreement as with regards to the total number of continents. So how many continents are there then, according to the disagreeing parties? > > Well, in Russia, Eastern Europe and Japan, the people there consider the continents of Europe and Asia as one, known as Eurasia. In other places in the world, North and South America are combined as one American continent while separating Europe and Asia instead. Thus, according to these two views, there should only be 6 continents. > > There are even geographical views that prefer the presence of both a Eurasian as well as one American continent. These geographers therefore contend that there should only be 5 continents. > > And if you thought that would be the lowest number, think again. There are others still who are more comfortable with a 4-continent view. http://help.nationalgeographic.com/customer/portal/articles/1449965-how-many-continents-are-there- > By convention there are seven continents: Asia, Africa, North America, South America, Europe, Australia, and Antarctica. **Some geographers list only six continents, combining Europe and Asia into Eurasia. In parts of the world, students learn that there are just five continents**: Eurasia, Australia, Africa, Antarctica, and the Americas. > > **To some geographers, however, "continent" is not just a physical term; it also carries cultural connotations. For example, Europe and Asia are physically part of the same landmass, but the two areas are culturally diverse.** (That is, the various cultural groups in Asia have more in common with one another than with those of Europe.) > > Islands located near a continent are generally considered, in a geographical sense, part of that continent. Greenland, for example, is politically part of Europe but belongs geographically to North America, as do the islands of the Caribbean and the western North Atlantic Ocean. There are some islands and island groups, however, that are not considered part of any continent, geographically speaking. New Zealand, Hawaii, and French Polynesia are among them. http://www.nytimes.com/books/first/l/lewis-myth.html > The Myth of Continents > A Critique of Metageography > > The Development of the Continental Scheme > > In contemporary usage, continents are understood to be large, continuous, discrete masses of land, ideally separated by expanses of water. Although of ancient origin, this convention is both historically unstable and surprisingly unexamined; the required size and the requisite degree of physical separation have never been defined. **As we shall see, the sevenfold continental system of American elementary school geography did not emerge in final form until the middle decades of the present century.** > <A bunch of text I don't have space to quote at length, but basically the 7 continent model is a fairly recent conceptual model.> > <Ending paragraph here> > ...Paradoxically, almost as soon as the now-conventional seven-part continental system emerged in its present form, it began to be abandoned by those who had most at stake in its propagation: professional geographers. Whereas almost all American university-level global geography textbooks before World War II reflected continental divisions, by the 1950s most were structured around "world regions" (discussed in chapter 6). Yet the older continental divisions have persisted tenaciously in the popular press, in elementary curricula, in reference works, and even in the terminology of world regions themselves. Anyone curious about the contemporary status of the continental scheme need only glance through the shelves of cartographic games and products designed for children. Nor is such pedagogy aimed strictly at the young. A recently published work designed primarily for adults, entitled Don't Know Much about Geography, locates the "nations of the world" according to their "continental" positions. The author further informs us that cartographers only "figured out" that Australia "was a sixth continent" in 1801. And his repetition of the familiar claim that Australia is at once "the world's smallest continent and its largest island" confirms as well the continuing invisibility of the "world island," encompassing Europe, Asia, and Africa. Were you actually unfamiliar with the discussion around what constitutes a continent?

  • Marietta Hackett

    continued: > 9th: Free Speech is man's only weapon against half-truth, that denies free > speech to smear-slay-slander-tax-enslave. Full-truth, our only God, unites > all mankind brave, if 10 men guard free speech, brave! "If every one > religion unites all mankind, it will be by omitting all irrelevancies & > redundancies, added unto the Faith in One-Almighty, all-embracing, > ever-loving, ever-evolving, ever-recreating Eternal God, & by ABSOLUTE > NOTHING ELSE!" America's founding father, Thomas Paine, 8 books, suppressed > since 1799! > 10th: Thank God we don't descend down from the perfect Adam & Eve to sinful > sinner, brother's keeper, divided slave! Thank God! United, hard-working > trained brave, from dust we ascend up! Thank God for that! Our brother's > teacher of the Moral ABC, mason-tent-&-sandalmaker Hillel, taught carpenter > Jesus to unite all mankind free! With it, every Human being created on > God's Spaceship Earth, can evolve united, > inspired-raised-trained-skilled-disciplined, guided lightning-like by a new > birth! Without it... we destroy God's Spaceship Earth! > 11th: Essene & Chinese birth controls must reduce birth or Easter Isle type > overpopulation destroys God's Spaceship Earth! God's law prevents all > conception below pH3. Therefore, Essene contracepted for 400 years with > rosehips, pH2! So, absolute clean, apply vaseline oil, butter or cream, > insert teaspoonful juicy lemon pulp, pH2. O.K.! Next day, douche with qt. > soapy water, pH8, restoring pH5 balance God made! Eggwhite is pH9. Dr. > Bronner's soap, pH8, guaranteed the mildest made; below pH8 soaps > biodegradable, synthetic-sulfides cannot. At conception, 10 grams contain > 100 million humans! or... 10 HUMANS IN 1 INVISIBLE MICROGRAM - SMALLER THAN > DUST! > 12th: A great teacher, must first, a self-supporting hardworker be, like > Alesen-Baeck-Carnegie-Cousteau-Hammer-Liebman-Paine-Pike-Sanger-Spinoza-Stra > uss-Szasz-Wilke-Yadin-Zamenhof, or he'll turn our greatest teaching into > spades, to bury our people! "All people!", added Carpenter Jesus entering > manhood! Manhood! but, for 2000 years, we Rabbis never teach the Moral ABC > the real Rabbi Hillel taught Jesus, to unite the Human race in our Eternal > Father's great ALL-ONE-GOD-FAITH! For we're ALL-ONE OR NONE! ALL-ONE! For > example: Einstein's Rabbi Levey evicted us from his University Princeton > "Hillel Foundation", when we asked: "You agree, of course, that Hillel's > hard work-speech-press-&-profitsharing Moral ABC, unites the Human race in > our Eternal Father's great ALL-ONE-GOD-FAITH! The exact opposite to > Marxist-Socialism, that does demoralize-divide-decay the whole human race > today! > 13th: "Knowing the full-truth that unites all, and not teaching all, is > deathly guilt." learned Jesus entering manhood! Manhood! But Marx, grandson > of 2 Rabbis, learned half-truth Ashamed, Marx wrote 1844: "One World > Without Jews," causing 66 million murders, many tortured-blinded, > terrorism! But Gorbachev found: "Surely God on high gave us enough wisdom > to unite all nations!" What an apology we Rabbis owe all nations for not > teaching the Moral ABC's All-One-God-Faith, the real Rabbi Hillel taught > Jesus to unite the human race! For we're All-One or none! All-One! All-One! > "Listen Children Eternal Father Eternally One!" These are the days my > friend, we know they'll never end! We'll work-sing-dance-love, marching on! > Marching on! We live God's law today, we win free speech OK! With > full-truth our only God, we rally-raise-unite All-One! All-One! Exceptions > Eternally? None! > All-One-God-Faith started 1000 acre Calif. rain-forest with 1 trillion > trees God's spaceship Earth can survive! Our 13 Essene Birth Control > Patents prevent overpopulation, save life! So in our town with 19 people > start a chapter of astronomers Israel 6000 year great All-One-God-Faith. > Send $10 for 10: $3 for 1 Moral ABC scrolls. 6 billion unite all free! > Instead of bombs, 6 billion scrolls unite the Human race instantly in > ALL-ONE GOD-FAITH! P.O. Box 28, Escondido, 92033 CA (760) 743-2211. ALL-ONE! > > Finally, the following text is off by itself in a box: > CLEOPATRA'S TEACHER OF ABSOLUTE LOVE: THE "ABC" OF MAMA CAT;" WITH THE > SWALLOW'S 10 DISCIPLINES ABOVE; THE ARCTIC WHITE OWL'S BIRTH-CONTROLLED LOVE! > Arctic White Owls by Birth-Control survive: the female does not go into > heat until she sees three full months of frozen food for her young ones to > survive! Putting to shame our welfare-state, with its untrained masses, > enslaved by Marxist half-truth hate! Beavers, by family teamwork, stay > alive! Building dams, surviving the toughest winters without any welfare > help to enjoy life! Bees, once each year, drop three percent drone > parasites from hive! How else can life ascend-evolve-survive? > Cleopatra's Art of Love, evolved Egypt's Civilization 10,000 years back, > based on the God-Inspired "ABC of Mama Cat: Automatically, instinctively, > each Mama Cat teaches her young ones from the moment of Birth: 1st: > Absolute cleanliness is Godliness! 2nd: Constructive-selfish, build, > protect and raise food, home, young! 3rd: Absolute teamwork fertilizes > God's Earth! 4th: Absolute harmony with God's timing, easy birth! 5th: > Mother's Love-discipline, joy, strength, praise! 6th: Father's > stern-discipline, off titties when raised! 7th: Hardworking > self-discipline, brave! 8th: God's instinct-discipline, save! 9th: Absolute > self-reliance! Nine lives! Strength, to carry on! 10th: Absolute dignity, > beauty, relaxation, fun! 11th: Absolute tenacity gets it done! 12th: > Absolute perfect sense of direction, ESP! 13th: Free, brave! No Marxist > slave! Mama Cat's ABC of Love and the Swallow's Song inspired by the > Kingdom of God's law! All-One! Above! Above! > All swallows evolve united to perfect pilots by full-truth, hard work, > God's law, trained brave! No slave! Brave! Always evolving-united, free in > All-One-God-Faith! Hardworking, self-disciplined, no > parasite-blackmail-welfare-slave! Therefore, brave we live to > teach-work-love-inspire-unite! All-One! Win Victory! Help get it done! > Teach to unite All-One! All-One! All-One! For these are the days my friend, > we know they'll never end! We'll work-sing-dance-love marching on! Marching > on! We'll teach how to Love God's Way! We'll fight for it, OK! For we're > young and sure to unite All-One! All-One! > All freedom loving children hate the word "Discipline!" Yet, > self-discipline is the key to freedom! Without it, even the most brilliant > head remains useless, ineffective, small! How basic is self-discipline? > Anthropologist, Margaret Mead, found Arctic Timberwolves litter abandoned, > the mother probably killed: "So, we put the timberwolf pups with our > Daschund mother, since she only had one pup of her own. She raised the > timberwolves. Within three months, they were twice as large as their foster > mother. > Now, when we threw a chunk of raw meat into the kennel, the pups attacked > it ravenously, like timberwolves, but one grunt from their Daschund mother, > and they jumped back, stood still like a soldier at attention, waiting > obediently until the Daschund mother had eaten her fill, then with a loving > grunt she gave them permission to go back and eat!" > That illustration of love-discipline was amazing; but any wild animal, bird > or bee, has that self-discipline down to a "T", or there is no survival! > This proves we must replace, with The Moral ABC, our Marxist welfare state, > or we won't survive free! We perish by half-true hate! Learn the Moral ABC > to unite free: You Must Decide! 1st: Work hard to perfect thyself! 2nd: > United-loving, armed-brave! 3rd: To teach all, every slave! 4th: The Moral > ABC, 6 billion strong, with Essene Birth-Control, a trillion Isreal-system > fruit trees and "How to Love." lightning-like uniting all free! All-One! > Above! Above. With half-truth, slavery, barbarism gone! Evolving-united, > inspired-guided by full-truth, hard work, God's Law, Eternally One! > All-One! All-One!

  • Adela Brown

    Yeah, /u/ezfi, that hoser. So I'm writing out a mod for Fallout 4 in which the Lone Wanderer tracks down a man named Flint Northwood to a bombed out theater and attached office space. In addition to some slick loot, the player recovers a note and a key that describes the fate of the *real* Flint Northwood, a vigilante whose name was stolen and defaced by a fraud that left him to die deep in the bowels of the Corazo Pipeworks. The Pipeworks were built before Vault-Tech built its hundreds of nuclear war survival vaults. An opportunistic project manager cut corners in the design of Vault X (still unnamed) by connecting it to the sewage treatment plant's pipes, which circulated and purified water in the short-term just long enough to get his clipboard effectively signed off on. Unfortunately for the Vault this means, after the war, it was only a matter of time until the Pipeworks stopped functioning and the incomplete infrastructure of the vault failed to provide for the residents. Worse, it was also a vector for disease and radiation. More damaging to the Vault than inadequate water purification, however, was the absence of government-mandated history books, funducational material, wartime propaganda, and the other material necessary for the generations born to the vault after the war to retain the American dream, or even to retain the necessary knowledge to continue functioning. Absent were the manuals on repair and maintenance. Absent were the guides to horticulture. Absent were textbooks on medicine. In their place were dozens upon dozens of Spaghetti Westerns, a Great Awakening-era Bible, and dime novels that romanticized the America West. Culture, history, medicine, social caste, religion-everything that the vault dwellers had, locked hundreds of feet beneath an irradiated surface, four generations in to a glorified (and poorly designed) science experiment, came at the hands of the silver screen or cardboard-print. The first generation, of course, was glad to have a source of entertainment. There was nothing to do in the vault but reproduce and await old age. The second generation, born entirely the world of intellectual darkness and fluorescent lights, had to memory of America save what their parents could impart. The third generation had the second-hand misremembrance of shattered, forgotten world. The fourth generation had John Wayne. And Clyde and Texas Jack and Wild Bill and Doc Holiday and Killer Jim Miller. The fourth generation named the next after the only heroes they had, ignorant to their fictional nature. You can't really blame them, but they lived and died believing the entirety of the world to exist in a loose confederacy of continents named "Texas" or "Indian Territory," navigable only at great danger along the Chisholm Trail. Such metropolises dominated this land as Abilene, the great Rail-Cattle Capitol. Some lands were christened in blood, lands of eternal war and plight, like the hell-on-earth Lincoln County. Cattle Barons were Satan and Ranch Hands their angelic soldiers. The almighty Cattle, the Range, the Rail, and Gold were sacred. No man ever shot another man in the back, and no body called a man "yellow-bellied" and lived to tell about it. The Jesse James gang terrorizes naughty children and Deacon Jim takes their souls. Beans and whiskey sustained a man. Poker was a holy rite. ...you can see where I'm going with this. The residents of the vault reverted to a strange and primitive society that sought to reconcile the mixed messages of their many films and the anachronisms and discrepancies presented by their environment. In the vault, there was no fear of darkness or rattlesnakes or even hypothermia. Near-perfectly sealed, near-perfectly self-contained, and yet the *desire* to face the tribulations and challenges of the Old West became self-fulfilling prophecies. The vault segregated. Hallways became "canyons." The route to the cafeteria became a "trail." The cafeteria itself was renamed "Sad Larry's Saloon," tended by a robot that never managed to reverse the decline and regression. People branded each other as "savages" and "desperados" and "banditos" and swore family feuds with no direction but an aimless, fervent, even fanatic desire to emulate their "history." They declared the southern section of the vault Mexico and somehow rumors spread of a hidden El Dorado, which began a protracted and bloody conflict. Confederates and Yankees were decided by whatever color shirt they chose that morning, sometimes ending a fight having traded sides twice or more! All the fighting was senseless, self-appointed, and accomplished nothing. But they did it anyway. It's what they were supposed to do. Right? There enters Mr. Flint Northwood. He commanded a posse of "gentlemen thieves," Robin Hood-esque vigilantes who "discovered" a "hidden mine" (I've got to stop with the quotes) after a couple of "miners" experimented with inventing dynamite. They left the vault and entered the Pipeworks, then eventually made their way to the surface where Northwood stole, robbed, shot, and murdered his way across the North-East. He deputized survivors and lynched raiders, all the while shouting about state's rights and all other sorts of nonsense. He eventually deigned to return to the vault with a mixed desire to "find a woman, a homestead, and peace" and to pursue El Dorado. Of course he didn't tell the survivors of his posse (none of which were original members, or knew anything about the vault) of the latter, except for his second-in-command and confidant. They encountered ghouls (zombies caused by radiation) in innumerable numbers. Flint was abandoned before discovering that the rest of the vault had succumbed to the same fate. For finding Flint's body (after fighting through the Pipeworks, solving puzzles, fighting through the vault, escaping the vault, and fighting through more Pipeworks), the player is rewarded with a completed quest, as well as a few unique items with which to remember this strange, strange tale. Most of the tale, of course, is discovered by reading computer entries, personal journals, or simply piecing information together. Some of the story telling/worldbuilding is visual, as are some of the jokes. The dead skeleton with a bowling pin for a head, for example, nearby a "Dirty Dan"-brand sponge. A lot of the set pieces and characters are named after my personal, favorite westerns. Others, like the references to The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly are just homages to the genre in general. My ideas so far: Doctor Holiday's Orthodonic Clinic The closet thing the vault had to a doctor was a disease-riddled alcoholic with a gambling problem. His office storeroom has a skeleton surrounded by easy-to-OD-on drugs, and his computer has an entry identifying the woman as Mrs. Blaylock. His computer has a series of notes detailing the plight of another woman named Ms. Sanalitro, who (as the player can discover) developed chlamydia, gonorrhea, "inmodest bumps," syphilis, hepatitis, and trichomoniasis, in addition to "diseases and symptoms I am unable to diagnose, or even describe." Of course, by the end the player has discovered that Doc Holiday is not so clean himself, and in his last entry he writes something to the effect of "I'm 90-days into the 100-day cough. Nothing I could catch from her would matter in time. Might as well have a last spot of fun." She can be found as a unique ghoul that deals poison damage. *Le Magnifique Sept* and *Briscoe-State Jr.* are two franchises that can be found in abundance. There is a unique shotgun called the "Problem Solver" that was used by the vault sheriff quite liberally that has a note reading "Problem solving is 93% perspiration, 4% evaporation, and 2% Butterscotch Ripple." There are sights of lynchings, scalpings, witches being burned at the stake, saloons, bordellos, hanged skeletons, and more. I'm almost at the comment limit so I have to wrap this up without going into better detail. But to prove my point, the near-religious reverence of the dwellers was something I hadn't thought through until now, as well as the purpose for the Vault and the Pipeworks to be so close together.

  • Cleve Weimann

    A carb heavy diet characterized by high percentage of calories comsumed through beverages, a rabid distaste for fresh vegetables, a widespread belief that food without salt was flavorless and darn near pointless, overworked college teaching assistants and residential assistants pilfering leftover food from college functions for their own consumption...oh, yeah, and young adult-heavy cities going mad for bacon. Sounds almost familiar, right? Well, maybe except for the tendency of princes to have their musicians play on a stage made out of pie crust. This introduction is of course having some fun with generic similarities between modern "mainstream" America (my basis for comparison) and 16th century England, but it's actually a good way of getting at the *differences* between typical diets in modern times versus during the era between when trade with the Islamic world and parts further east was affecting the upper classes but before the foodstuffs and fads from the New World really took hold. Broadly speaking, I might say that modern diets tend to be more horizontally diverse in terms of different types of things consumed, whereas late medieval/early modern diets were more vertically efficient. While modern carb consumption involves breads, potatoes, dry cereal, junk food, *the* basic 16th century staple was bread. Price controls to make at least some amount of bread affordable to even the poorest people was one of the first signs of the English government acting for the good of its people, not just the enrichment of the sovereign. Ovens in private residences were still very rare, so much like today, nearly all bread was purchased commercially. But while most bread today tends to be "white" or "wheat" (obviously not the only varieties available), the different types of bread--defined by type of grain used, fineness of flour, amount of sweetener (usually honey) and spices, etc--was so criticial that *laws regulated who could bake what kind*. Bakers developed "trademarks" that they carved into their bread loaves to prove it was their work, just like printers added their names to the title page of their books to claim ownership. The #1 piece of advice for weight loss, at least for Americans, is "stop drinking your calories." And what a rainbow of ways we do that--soda, juice, a thousand varieties of alcohols and mixed drinks, milk, sweet tea, pumpkin spice lattes. For medieval people beyond the elite, drinking a high percentage of the day's calories (up to 30% in some estimates) was critical to powering through the day, but options were much narrower. While preacher railed against the evils of wine, weakened beer was the daily drink of choice for adults and children alike. (By 1500 in England, commercially-purchased beer with hops was largely replaced homebrewed ale without). This is not to say that water was "universally unsafe" or never drunk. It was the beggar's (or the penitent's) drink--free and good for hydration or religious asceticism, but vastly inferior to the beer that could also supply energy and flavor. Although more creative options are not unheard of, American meat-eating tends to center on the big four: fish, chicken/turkey, cow, and pig. Furthermore, unlike some other modern cultures, Americans tend to consume a strikingly small percentage of each animals. Meat-eating was much more the province of the urban middle/upper and noble classes in 16C England than it is an upper class privilege today. Fish was by far the most prevalent animal consumed, with pig and cow next up. However, standard types of fish were a much wider variety than today's typical tuna or salmon, with the occasional shrimp (or fried calamari). Studying account registers from King's College (Cambridge) in the late 15C, Francois Soyer found the students frequently dined on eel, roach, perch, tench, gudgeon, pike, herring, dogfish, salmon, mackerel, ling, cod, and oysters; haddock, sole, plaice, turbot, scallops, crab, shrimp, and *sting rays* were rare treats. Poultry, too, encompassed more than our default chicken and turkey. (Alas for your Renfair turkey leg, turkeys make it over from the Americas a bit later). Parish churches had built in towers for doves to nest in (yes, poop disposal was a problem)--selling young doves to hungry consumers was a common fundraising method. Of course, for people who still maintained meatless religious fasting practices, fast days (including all of Lent) required some strategic substitions. One Italian lasagna recipe recommends substituting ground-up nuts for the meat (the recipe also involves lays of noodle and cheese; this is pre-tomato days). In terms of pig and cow, there was a definite "waste not want not" attitude. Christopher Woolgar notes that while modern research places a premium on butchers (especially in archaeological research--a surprising amount of our knowledge of medieval meat consumption comes from studying animals skeletons in burial pits next to butcher shops), medieval sources often highlight the skills and special roles of nonprofessional English *women* at handling and preparing offal, especially intestines (helloooo, sausage). Pig hooves, a nice dog treat today, were considered a treat, especially among monks and nuns. As for flavoring? With the exception of the rich and the aspirational, which I'll discuss in a moment, there were two major medieval ways of adding flavor to food: salt and fat. Our word "sauce," in fact, comes from Latin *salsa* and *in salsamento*--basically, salted. Salting meat was absolutely vital in a pre-refrigeration age, as the primary means of preservation. Salted fish, in particular, was the major way that meat was transported and consumed in winter. But pretty much everything got the salt treatment, sometimes combined with smoking. If you've guessed that salted pork, either smoked or cooked in extra fat, was as tasty then as it is now--by all accounts, thick-cut bacon was an enduringly popular way of consuming meat. (In the 19th century, in fact, travel guides for Oregon Trail pioneers recommended the purchase of absolutely unholy amounts of bacon). By way of what we would consider flavorings, medieval culture distinguished between what scholars classify as "herbs" and "spices." The basic difference was cultural, not scientific. Herbs were local and cheaper; spices were expensive, exotic, and from far away. As a result, spices were enormously popular for the rich to dump and dump and overdump in their food, as a demonstration of conspicuous wealth and largesse to their guests (spices were also expensive medical remedies). While modern cuisine pays exquisite attention to different combinations of flavorings (spices and herbs and flavored oils and flavored vinegars and and and), medieval recipes often just say "and spices," with the implication being either that the cook would know *or* that the cook would just use whatever/everything that was available. This type of pattern--vertical rather than horizontal diversity--applies to other categories of food of food as well, like dairy (milk, butter, and cheese instead of our amazing array of dairy products...but use cow, sheep, goat) and the ability of 15th-16th century foodsellers to turn anything into a pie (including the Duke of Burgundy's 28 living musicians). So while some foodstuffs would be completely recognizable to modern eyes and maybe even the modern palate (comparing taste is *really* hard; historians of wine tie themselves in paroxysmic fits trying to figure out what medieval and early modern wine actually tasted like), other dishes would definitely raise some eyebrows.

  • Luigi Hickle

    TL:DR sorry By no means is Tolkien free from criticism. Yes light/dark is and was a cliche concept. It's also a cliche way to bring modern race/identity politics into things not involving them. Stretch them to tenuous racial points if one wants but you still cannot remove the discussion from their innate concepts dealing with luminosity. Tolkien was a pretty devout Christian, which has heavy light/dark mythos, so this would obviously permeate his thoughts. Again this idea is common in mythologies from all ages and around the world. The trope is open to much criticism for sure, but even Christianity began and spread from non-white peoples of the near/far east and was spread through Europe by the "swarty ones", not the very white nordics... The only 'universally bad guy culture' in the world is that of Melkor and his demigod/monstrous allies. The actual 'races' (Children of Iluvater) of middle earth are all subject to both resist and accept this influence. No one race ever stays wholly pure (dwarves at best). Again it must be stressed...the Orcs, trolls, and the like are not 'races' as the others. Elves and Men (of all shades) were the "planned" 'Children of Iluvatar'. Dwarves were somewhat unplanned but Iluvatar gave them divine blessing and so they find themselves among men and elves in grand scheme. Orcs, trolls, and other monstrosities were born from an evil god's magical power, in direct contrast to that of the good...they are essentially demons. They are given no agency outside of thralldom to evil and receive no 'salvation'. Tolkien somewhat wanted to perhaps find some good deliverance for these beings, but ultimately they never become more than monsters. Again, I think the idea to equate Orcs to Black people leans towards stirring controversy and baiting far more than any actual readings of the texts or Tolkien's own ideas... In the battle I consider all the Easterlings dying more of a sign of how the battle turned than their 'cowardice' or 'lesser-than-ness'. Bor and his sons are seen as heros inasmuch as any other minor players in the battle. Sure some people were made to seem more heroic in the battle but some elves, dwarves, and men alike flee. Then again it was the great anti/hero elf Feanor's follies that truly lead to the defeat. Still some are painted more 'heroic' but the outcome hardly contains a 'racial' message...unless it's against Elves... Well considering one sentence then they are known for both 'greatness' and 'cruelty'. In the real word evil and cruelty are not truly synonymous terms. The Black Numenoreans do not 'show up'. The Numenoreans, before they become evil, meet and forge relationships with Harad, which borders what they claim as their kingdom. Ultimately the Haradrim are described as the Easterlings are: they are loosely connected tribal groups of men of varying color, custom, and disposition. Numenor's fall into evil is partly predicated upon the way their kingdom over time becomes colonial and begins to *subjugate and enslave* the Haradrim, they do not become the Black Numenoreans until somewhat later. Both the Haradrim falling for Sauron's lies and the Numenoreans descent show that men of all types can be enticed and coerced to do evil...I mean don't all of the races/characters/heros embody a tale of the 'greyness' of morality and action? Despite their siding with the dark lord during Pellenor, I see no reason to consider all men from groups that support evil at various points to be solely bad guys. Some critique that there are no truly rebellious heros from these group to show up is somewhat warranted. That is maybe the harshest racist critique of the works that holds any water, along with perhaps their lack of *inclusion*... But even these critiques seem weak, conjecture and/or anachronistically agenda driven. Not to mention that the 'academic' critiques of Tolkien along these lines pick up a lot of steam around the time of the movies (which I dislike) and often read like the author(s) have spent little time reading (but perhaps watching) any Tolkien. All the hallmarks of 'out of context', 'cherry-picked sentences', lack of attention to blatant overarching themes, etc. are present... But if we must get a little critical in our theory then we have some things to look at. "...squat, broad, flat-nosed, sallow-skinned, with wide mouths and slant eyes; in fact degraded and repulsive versions of the (to Europeans) least lovely Mongol-types."(Letter 210) This is Tolkien is a letter describing some reasons for one the few times 'human' attributes are ascribed to Orcs. This statement does not seem kind, but we can gleam a few things. They are not meant to be black people and he offers that the description comes from Euro sentiments of the time, not necessarily a personal belief, towards Mongols and the hoard. Allow me to be crass but nearly everyone from China to Europe considered the Mongol hoards to be horrifying people who rode into your lands, raped your women, killed wantonly, and subjugated you to their empire. Mongol contact with the outside world as not that of oppression they received, but that of oppression they carried out and embodied. They are one of the great colonial empires of the ages; if anything, by 'moderns standards', shouldn't that be considered "punching-up"? Maybe his dark-light dichotomy is about black/white skin color? Maybe the "swarty" men are only evil? Maybe the only concern of the book is white supremacy? Come on... How many minor plot points or characters can we pick up on a try to bend to modern theory and blow out of proportion (considering how much he actually wrote). At what point are we defending Morgoth and his ilk as 'misunderstood'? (Hell even white privileged Adorno and his Frankfurt school allies were creating these discourses of attack during and after Tolkien's time...) Sure there are biases from Tolkien's own world. He was white, British, heavily studied in 'white peoples' mythology, etc. He is writing in English, using familiar mythological tropes, to a predominately white audience. Critique is welcome, but that coming focused from a modern lense of anachronistic condemnation obviously comes *biased*. Despite his 'damning orc letter', there are many letters of his animosity towards Nazi Germany, Apartheid South Africa, belief in the non-allegorical nature of his works, "...unscientific race-doctrine", etc... Again, racism is prevalent in his works among the beings of middle earth and is uniformly a bad and corrupting thing...both 'other' racism and 'racial purity'... >He certainly does Seriously? The only way this is believed is if you accept, completely, all post-modern, critical discourse as the 'holy' way. Otherwise he is guilty at best of 'microaggressions'. You have to literally read the books and only think about how Orcs are inner city blacks or some shit...I say to this that there are far more meaningful, easier, and more pertinent places to dig up racism than in Tolkien's fantasy world...

  • Irwin Becker

    Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth. (Mat 5:5) The elect shall possess light, joy and peace, and they shall inherit the earth. (Enoch 5:7 {6:9}) the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the son (John 5:22). the principal part of the judgment was assigned to him, the Son of man. (Enoch 69:27 {68:39}) shall inherit everlasting life (Mat. 19:29) those who will inherit eternal life (Enoch 40:9 {40:9}) "Wo unto you that are rich! for ye have received your consolation. (Luke 6:24) Woe to you who are rich, for in your riches have you trusted; but from your riches you shall be removed. (Enoch 94:8 {93:7}). Ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. (Mat. 19:28) I will place each of them on a throne of glory (Enoch 108:12 {105:26}) Woe unto that man through whom the Son of man is betrayed! It had been good for that man if he had not been born. (Mat. 26:24) Where will the habitation of sinners be . . . who have rejected the Lord of spirits. It would have been better for them, had they never been born. (Enoch 38:2 {38:2}) between us and you there is a great gulf fixed. (Luke 16:26) by a chasm . . . [are] their souls are separated (Enoch 22: 9,11{22:10,12}) In my Father's house are many mansions (John 14:2) In that day shall the Elect One sit upon a throne of glory, and shall choose their conditions and countless habitations. (Enoch 45:3 {45:3}) that ye may be called the children of light (John 12:36) the good from the generation of light (Enoch 108:11 {105: 25}) the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life. (John 4:14) all the thirsty drank, and were filled with wisdom, having their habitation with the righteous, the elect, and the holy. (Enoch 48:1 {48:1}) Here is a good summary of the book: We first learn of Enoch in Genesis 5 but it leaves us with questions. Hebrews 11 has the answers and Jude quotes Enoch! How did Jude come to know the words of Enoch? They are not in the Bible. The answer of course, is The Book of Enoch. A book which is actually quoted not only by Jude, but also James the natural brother of Jesus. The quote in (Jude 14-15) & (1 Enoch 1:9) is as follows: "In the seventh (generation) from Adam Enoch also prophesied these things, saying: 'Behold, the Lord came with his holy myriads, to execute judgment on all, and to convict all the ungodly of all their ungodly deeds which they have committed in such an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things which ungodly sinners spoke against him'." What is the Book of Enoch and where did it come from? Enoch was the grandfather of Noah. The Book of Enoch chapter 68:1 "And after that my grandfather Enoch gave me all the secrets in the book and in the parables which had been given to him, and he put them together for me in the words of the book of the parables." This makes it possible for the Book to have survived the flood as its not too hard to accept that Noah would have taken his Great Grandfathers writings with him onto the ark. The Book of Enoch was extant centuries before the birth of Christ and yet is considered by many to be more Christian in its theology than Jewish. It was considered scripture by many early Christians. The earliest literature of the so-called "Church Fathers" is filled with references to this mysterious book. The early second century "Epistle of Barnabus" makes much use of the Book of Enoch. Second and Third Century "Church Fathers" like Justin Martyr, Irenaeus, Origin and Clement of Alexandria all make use of the Book of Enoch. Tertullian (160-230 C.E) even called the Book of Enoch "Holy Scripture". The Ethiopic Church even added the Book of Enoch to its official canon. It was widely known and read the first three centuries after Christ. This and many other books became discredited after the Council of Laodicea. And being under ban of the authorities, afterwards it gradually passed out of circulation. At about the time of the Protestant Reformation, there came to be a renewed interest in the Book of Enoch which had long since been lost to the modern world. By the late 1400's rumors began to spread that somewhere a copy of the long lost Book of Enoch might still exist. During this time many books arose claiming to be the long lost book and were later found to be forgeries. The return of the long lost Book of Enoch to the modern western world is credited to the famous explorer James Bruce, who in 1773 returned from six years in Abyssinia with three Ethiopic copies of the lost book. In 1821 Richard Laurence published the first English translation. The famous R.H. Charles edition was published in 1912. In the following years several portions of the Greek text surfaced. Then with the discovery of cave 4 of the Dead Sea Scrolls, seven fragmentary copies of the Aramaic text were discovered. The Book of Enoch is divided into five basic parts, but it is the The Book of Parables (37-71) which gives scholars the most trouble for it is primarily concerned with a figure called "the messiah"; "the righteous one"; "the chosen one" and "the son of man." Chapter 46:1-2, There I beheld the Ancient of days whose head was like white wool, and with him another, whose countenance resembled that of a man. His countenance was full of grace, like that of one of the holy angels. Then I inquired of one of the angels, who went with me, and who showed me every secret thing, concerning this Son of man; who he was; whence he was; and why he accompanied the Ancient of days. He answered and said to me, This is the Son of man, to whom righteousness belongs; with whom righteousness has dwealt; and who will reveal all the treasures of that which is concealed: for the Lord of spirits has chosen him; and his portion has surpassed all before the Lord of spirits in everlasting uprightness." The opening verses of the Book of Enoch tell us that the revelations in this book were not meant for Enoch's generation, rather a remote generation, and of course the book would make more sense to the generations after Christ. We know that the early Church made use of the Book of Enoch, but it was then all but lost, until recent times. Perhaps this book was meant for our generation, as it is widely available today after being concealed for over a millennia. (Enoch 1:1-3) The words of the blessing of Enoch, wherewith he blessed the elect and righteous, who will be living in the day of tribulation, when all the wicked and godless are to be removed. And he took up his parable and said -Enoch a righteous man, whose eyes were opened by God, saw the vision of the Holy One in the heavens, which the angels showed me, and from them I heard everything, and from them I understood as I saw, but not for this generation, but for a remote one which is for to come. Hope that gives some food for thought.

  • Gregorio Farrell

    In case of defective link The Great Song to Mani O teacher of the original doctrine of the noble Jesus! We are here to worship and revere you. O my respected and famous father, my Buddha Mani! We are here alone to worship you from our heart of humility. Be our hope and refuge and receive the worship of each one of us. Before you we bow with internal faith. May each of our prayers be pure. You told us the consequences of evil . . . you blocked the road to hell . . . preaching good laws. . . . You rescued eight kinds of suffering beings in poisonous savage animals. . . . Unendingly submerged in the dust of forgetting rebirths and in a state of poisonous savage animals, they were always mad. When the passion of greed poisoned them and they were dying, you prepared a medicine for them from the herb of meditation. They raved in the passion of anger; they lacked sense or coherent thought and you assembled their thoughts, and so they understood their origin in the realm of light. Those living beings in the five states of existence you freed from ignorance and gave them wisdom, leading them to parinirvana. Many differing passions—hatred and bitterness— troubled these thinking beings and scattered their thought, but holy father, when you descended from the sky, the families of all thinking beings reached the peace of nirvana. We who are miserable and with no hope would have stayed in the torture of samsara, not finding the end of your path. You set up the ladder of wisdom, you let us supersede the five forms of being, and you delivered us. We who were fettered in suffering were rescued from rebirth to see the Buddha-like sun god who is like you. For those tied to transitory pleasure, you preached the true law. You carried them across the sea of suffering to the good nirvana. For those tied to the root of attachment to the world, you revealed the road to the realm of the Buddhas, you raised a Sumeru mountain of virtue, you let them find endless happiness. For those plunged in the water of pride, you showed the bridge of the true law. You took understanding of the good law into their hearts. You entrusted them to the holy assembly. For those confused by the six organs of perception you showed the rising and falling states of being. You revealed what is the suffering of those in the Avici, the deepest Buddhist hell. You let them be reborn in the blessed fivefold heaven of light. Look[ing?] for the ways of salvation, you crossed lands going to every side. When you found humans needing salvation, you rescued all. To those like us who were lazy, you preached details of the jewel of the gospel book. We come on the ways of freedom and salvation when we know them in the book. If you hadn't preached the pure law so fully, wouldn't the world and its thinking beings have come to an end by now? After the four Buddhas you went down and attained truly incomparable buddhahood. You saved thousands and saved them from dark hell. You purged them of masterly cunning and deception and caused them to help others. You were a guide leading those in error. You saved them from the claws of evil Mara. You rescued the malevolent, you healed the blind, you caused them to do works of honor, you showed them the right path to the land of the gods, You were born the hope and refuge of the world. You taught the seven precious books and held back those about to join evil. Walking on foot and calling your name, praising you with their tongues, they would all love the same as children who love their mothers and fathers. Hugging them with your compassionate heart, you brought them great help and prosperity. Not distinguishing between relative and stranger, you made them yours. You counseled numberless people. With your heart you do good to all, and through your good the afflicted overcome their sorrow. You brought them great help and prosperity in this way always. Because of your virtue you come into full buddhahood. Through your insuperable tongue and generosity you gave the jewel of the good law to us the miserable. The families of the living lost their minds through their dark passions, yet they were reborn. Through your great and compassionate heart you put your arms around everyone and rescued them from the cycle of rebirth, saving them from samsara. The blessed of pure heart slowly came upon insight, overcame malevolence, and came to the statue of the arhats. But pleasure, tying them to the world, gave them mastery of cunning and trickery. You brought them help and prosperity. For those who forgot their origin, you revealed who you are, changing your form. When all living beings saw your revelation, they were inspired and desired only to escape from the suffering of cyclical samsara. To children you came in a benevolent form and turned them from evil and love of the world, to which they had succumbed. Before the blue sky of the whole kingdom you were born as the Buddha god of teachers. On seeing you, the living were happy and with firm minds no longer doubted. They obeyed your commandments. Their good thoughts increased every day and shone like the sun god. The knowledge of light shone. In their hearts compassion grew. They obeyed the commandment to be sinless and escaped the unending burning fires of hell. They tried to keep the true law, observe the true commandment, and not fall into impure sin. After knowing the transience of the body, they left their houses and homes. Following the good law, they were pure in body. They made every effort to follow pure laws and avoid the dangerous places. To be reborn in the palace of immortality, they observed the commandment to be pure in mouth. They prayed for blessing and to walk along the road of blessing and escape terrible samsara. They followed the commandment of blessed poverty. In fear of the perceived transitory doctrines and of the three evil ways, they followed the three seals to be reborn in the highest place. You agreed to command them, to praise and sing songs, to repeal their evil, to gather and meditate. The living had been confused, but when they heard your command, their virtue was a teeming stream and river, and they were reborn in the land of the Buddhas. Other unworldly people walked in pure paths and meditated and were reborn in the palace of immortality. We bow our heads and we worship before you, our highest god. May the living on earth be forever reborn in nirvana! We worship. Our heart is steady. May all the living on earth escape dangers. May they find the peace of nirvana. So through the virtue of our praise and worship may all holy forces of the gods above and below and of the diverse spirits be magnified.

  • Darron Ritchie

    Torment tells Alice that he's been waiting for her. He knows that Ending had placed a pawn among the Reader's apprentices, and he wanted to see what her new servant could do. Alice protests that she's not anyone's servant, but Torment scoffs at the notion. Her manipulation of the maze proved that Ending has lent her power, he says, and he's decided it is better to eliminate the threat while he has the chance. Alice tells him she doesn't want to fight, just to know what the connection was between Esau and her father. Torment says that while he knows all of Esau's secrets, he has no reason to reveal them to her. Isaac shouts a warning, and Alice whirls to find wolf-like creatures closing in all around her. Isaac throws himself in their path and goes down under a pack of them, and before Alice can hurry to his help new walls spring up between them. Torment himself, an enormous wolfen thing, emerges from the shadows and comes after her, and Alice runs for it, the pack baying at her heels. She runs until she's exhausted, but every time she tries to find someplace to stop and rest or turn on her pursuers, the maze changes and they emerge practically on top of her. She eventually realizes that she's being deliberately hunted -- Torment is toying with her. Her anger at this gives her new strength, and she exerts her own will to change the labyrinth and surprise the wolves, sending Torment's children howling with a sudden attack by her bound creatures. Torment himself briefly flees, and Alice follows, only to find herself in a plain stone room with no exits. The maze-demon, furious now, admits that Ending has taught Alice a few tricks. He says he's done with games, and he's trapped them both in a space at the center of the maze, from which there is no escape. Then he comes after her, jaws snapping. Alice throws everything she has at him, but to no avail -- the Labyrinthine is unspeakably strong and shrugs off the strongest blows, and his wounds heal almost instantly. Torment had Alice at his mercy when Alice, in desperation, pulls with the last of her energy on the dragon thread and finds it uncoiling into the world at her touch. The dragon materializes beside her, not full-sized but still as big as Torment, and pounces on the giant wolf. The two wrestle in a whirl of claws and scales, but before long the dragon has the advantage, and ends up on top with the wolf's throat in its jaws. The blank stone room dissolves around them, and they find themselves back on top of the pyramid. Isaac is waiting nearby, having disposed of the wolves attacking him. Alice asks if he's okay, and he repeats, irritated, that he had the situation in hand. The dragon tells Torment that he will answer Alice's questions, and the trapped wolf-thing's resistance quickly subsides. Alice asks what Esau had to do with her father, and Torment tells her that all the Readers knew that he was hiding a first-class candidate, and were trying to get him to hand her over as an apprentice. The dragon growls that he's lying, and insists that he show her everything. Torment acquiesces, and a mirrored wall mounds up out of the stone and beings displaying the events of a rain-swept night aboard the deck of the Gideon, more than a year previously. The image shows Esau confronting Alice's father, after his creatures have ransacked their rooms. Esau is furious that Alice isn't with him, and Alice's father is defiant. Esau threatens him. They're interrupted by an explosion from outside, and they rush out to find the ship heeling over under the assault of furious wind-sprites and riven by lightning strikes. Hovering amid the storm, distant but recognizable, is the fantastically-bearded figure of Geryon. He demands that Alice's father and Alice be handed over to him, but Esau's only answer is to call on his own forces, water-sprites and vicious sea creatures. The view blurs as the battle between two full-scale Readers reaches epic proportions, but the last image is of the Gideon afire and sinking as magical pyrotechnics blaze on all sides. Alice sits back, stunned. The dragon, satisfied, crushes Torment, and the huge wolf dissipates in a spray of black sparks. Alice is upset, but the dragon assures her that it takes more than that to kill a Labyrinthine, although the maze-demon may take years to recover. Then the dragon too vanishes. Alice looks around for Isaac and finds him coming back a staircase at the back of the pyramid, which he says he was just checking for threats. They walk together, in silence, back down the now-quiet avenue toward the exit. Alice asks Isaac what will happen to this place now, and he says that the other Readers will descend like vultures, sending creatures to fight one another and grab the most valuable books. They reach the portal-book and go through, back to the cavern where further portals lead to their respective homes. Isaac is ready to depart, but Alice stops him to ask why he was so cold to her at the beginning. Isaac, a bit sheepish, admits that he was worried he might have to fight her, and he didn't want to get any friendlier because he wasn't sure he'd be able to do it. Alice thanks him for coming back with her, and when he blushes deeply she hugs him and kisses him on the cheek. In doing so, however, she finds the pockets of his coat are thick with books. Isaac admits that he was under orders to grab the, from a storeroom behind the pyramid. Alice asks him whether he came back for that, or to help her, and he insists that it was mostly to help her. He looks so sheepish that all she can do is laugh, and open the portal back to Geryon's estate. Before she leaves, he extracts one of the books and hands it to her, saying that she may need it more than he does. (A.N. She eventually binds the creature inside, see opening note.) That night, Alice has a disturbing dream. She's chasing Geryon through a maze, and the walls reshape around her, so she can hunt him as easily as Torment hunted her. He's desperate and afraid, begging her to stop, but she runs him down and transforms into the dragon, swallowing the old man whole and crunching his bones between her teeth. When she looks up, though, she sees her father watching her, looking sad. Alice tries to turn back into a girl, but she can't, and when she flees her father's disapproval the walls of the maze rise up around her to hide her forever. She wakes up, sweaty and disheveled, but as she thinks it over her resolve hardens. She knows now that Geryon lied to her, and that he was intimately involved in sinking of the Gideon. Her father might not approve, but her father is dead, and Alice is determined to have her revenge.

  • Carrie Nitzsche

    > You're conflating human with human personhood. My elbow is a human elbow, but it's not a human person. Just because a fetus is human (rather than a feline fetus) doesn't make it a person those are some mental gymnastics to justify the killing note, I found several instances where killing a baby may be more humane, but never did i try to lie to myself or anyone else that it isnt a human to justify killing it its common mental gynastics - just like one of the oldest trick in the book to justify violence is to dehumanize your opponent nazis dehumanized Jews, Japanese in WW2 dehumanized the chinese, and so one. The japanese, in order to mutilate and torture thousands of chinese people w/ plagues, removing limbs, rape experiments, plague experiments, and torture, had to make the other person less than human typically its a mental game... I think a reasonable person whould be able to at least recognize they were themself a fetus. I don't get this magic that happens that when a baby exits the uterus it somehow gains person hood, as if the baby is any different than it was moments ago prior to exiting the womb >the inviability of a fetus by definition requires the outside intervention of the host to support it until it can gestate to a state of viability in which it can be born and not need outside intervention for support. youre trying to argue that the passive care of the baby makes it requiring outside intervention but it is all passive and biological - true it requires something of the mother, but in a consensual sex situation she knew this was the result also consider a chicken egg - they passively always produce these eggs but if it is fertilized, the fetus grows outside of the chicken in an already produced egg - even though it is a different animal w/ a different cycle, it illustrates how this stuff is a natural biological cycle interrupting that and killing the child is far more assertive than letting it passively develop >It takes a direct and intentional action of the hen to sit on the egg for it to develop into a hatchable chicken. It's funny how this example undermines your argument its funny how the point wooshed right over your head it is still part of the natural biological cycle from a consenting action - its merely a different example to show, in the context of resources, that the resources are already in the egg and the heat already comes from the chicken. Youre trying to target the one aspect that the chicken needs to spend her downtime on the egg, rather than 5 inches from the egg, to let the egg hatch. >Um, history would like to have a word with you about this claim hard to discuss topics w/ people that can't understand points... humans have often had murder laws right? true, humans have often fought w/ other humans, but within a society, history universally has shown a respect for other humans that humans dont have for other living things murder laws are one of the oldest laws on the books and generally always accepted - ever hear of Hammurabi's code? thats like 4k years old - just because one group of ppl like to kill other groups it doesn't mean that humans don't respect human life, they just dont respect the lives of those they think are their enemies or adversaries you just can't understand what youre reading, maybe thats why you hold your points of view >that is an extremely sexists thing to say No, it's a factual statement. Aside from Couvade syndrome (which isn't accepted by all doctors as a real thing even), a male genetic donor cannot experience the carrying of the fetus or a miscarriage or giving birth. He cannot die in childbirth. He will not be able to provide milk to an infant after it's born. He factually cannot have an equal stake in the pregnancy as the pregnant woman. still horribly sexist what you mean to say is that he bears less of a physical burden in the one stage of fetal development but society often delegates a ton of the labor to the man via providing and caring for it, and emotionally they can be just as interested in the child's welfare youre a sexist, plain and simple >A fetus does not have due process rights. It's not recognized by the Constitution as being a person with rights foreigners don't have the right to immigrate, yet the left often thinks they do, and try to argue it, because it is a living document also this is more of a moral discussion and a discussion of what laws should be, not what they are in the USA >If a fetus dies during its removal from the woman because its not at a stage of viability, it's the equivalent of you dying from failing kidneys because I refused to give you one of mine **okay, at this point i think it a waste of time to keep reading something from someone with such a horrible understanding of responsibilities** If I refused to give you my kidney when yours failed, it is obviously not my problem. I can let you die. Why? I didn't cause them to fail. I didn't influence your genetics. I have zero relationship w/ your kidneys or you. A mother however, **created the baby** when she consented to sex. She is directly the cause for the baby's existence, just like your parents are the sole cause for your existence. The baby is now a living human, and the mother now, because she is a direct cause of its inception, has the responsibility to not let it die. We don't really like it when moms toss newborns in the trash either. We as a society don't think parents should abuse and kill children of any age. Let me give you one more hypo to sort of illustrate this concept, since it seems you need it. If you are on a bridge, and see a person in the water below drowning, you aren'ts required to to save them in most jurisdictions. Some, you don't even have to make a phone call for them, though now often you are expected to make minimal effort such as alerting rescue services. But what if you yourself, either intentionally or accidentally, knocked them into the water? You are now legally required to do everything possible to save them. Both criminal and tort laws expect this. Your actions have a causal relationship w/ the situation, so now you have to take responsibility for what you did, whether on purpose or accident(negligence). How you are able to try and argue that giving kidneys, and letting the baby that you created connect to a bloodvessel, means you are totally incapable of logic and reason. sorry. end of story, abortion should be an option in 1)rape 2)mother's health actually in danger (meaning, in places without healthcare it would be easier to have one) 3) baby deformities 4)**both** parents agree they can't care for it and it would be more humane to end it

  • Jarvis Nienow

    > Death penalty: Good. Dictatorships agree. > Teen pregnancy...not any government's fault Anti-condom, anti birth control. > Religious fundamentalism: Wrong. The USSR, Nazi Germany, and many other failed states had anti-theism They weren't 3rd world. One was a superpower and the other WASN'T anti-god. **The Hitler Oath...** "I swear to God this sacred oath that to the Leader of the German Empire and people, Adolf Hitler, supreme commander of the armed forces, I shall render unconditional obedience and that as a brave soldier I shall at all times be prepared to give my life for this oath." Service oath for public servants... "I swear: I will be faithful and obedient to the leader of the German Empire and people, Adolf Hitler, to observe the law, and to conscientiously fulfill my official duties, so help me God!" > Anti-gay marriage: Nobody is against gay marriage any more. **Bannon...** "On the social conservative side, we’re the voice of the anti-abortion movement, the voice of the traditional marriage movement, and I can tell you we’re winning victory after victory after victory. > Tough on crime: GOOD! We don't want repeat offenders. And yet there are repeat offenders in every TOUGH on crime state and nation. > Anti-diversity: Again, nobody is against diversity any more. We're a meritocracy. Bannon's website, Breitbart: "Why equality and diversity departments should only hire rich, straight, white men" And David Duke loves Bannon's appointment by Trump. "Excellent". > Fewest regulation: More freedom, less rules! And more like the 3rd world! And UNLIKE every free nation on Earth. The rules are to protect the commons, things we all share: the air, water, etc. > Really HATE progressives: I'd hate them too So do fundamentailsts. Muslim. Christian. Whatever flavor. > Male supremacy / anti-feminist: Not in the US. [Quiverfull](http://www.andrewpurcell.net/?p=1070): "offshoot of the Christian Patriarchy movement...tens of thousands of American families are withdrawing from the world, educating their children at home and living according to a literal interpretation of the Bible that stresses absolute submission to male authority." > Fossil fuel loving: You mean they have blue-collar workers? Instead of [more entrepreneurs](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NjTi1j4enl4) with truly renewable energy. The opposite of truly renewable is undemocratic energy. We can do better. And we will despite Trump policies. [Democratic energy is vastly superior](http://i.imgur.com/vXXkQsn.jpg) for economic liberation. And [it's accelerating](https://www.reddit.com/r/worldnews/comments/5pgo4d/iceland_is_digging_worlds_deepest_geothermal/dcrdkr1). > Ok with using nukes: Because getting rid of them only makes it easier for countries with nuclear capability to strongarm us. We should definitely let Kim Jong Un be world leader, gaiz. All nations must abandon nukes. They naturally perpetuate war. Only nations with permission can tinker. "We can use nuclear energy, but YOU can't" > Really hate anti-war activists: Holy shit, you're serious about letting nations with larger standing armies have at us. Newsflash: while America still has enemies, we will have a strong military. Anti-war. As in against the *abusing* of the military to fatten the war industry. Along with all its propaganda of blind/fake patriotism to scare the public into supporting the war. USA spends more on military than the next 7 nation *combined*. (Including Russia, China *and* Saudi Arabia) No other bad nations come even close. The rst of the 7 nations are allies. > Declare natural disaster as god's punishment against gays: Not since there was a belief system based on rain sticks. **Jerry Falwell** on 9/11: “I really believe that the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU, People For the American Way—all of them who have tried to secularize America—I point the finger in their face and say ‘you helped this happen’" **Pastor John Hagee** on Katrina: “I believe that New Orleans had a level of sin that was offensive to God, and they were recipients of the judgment of God for that. The newspaper carried the story in our local area that was not carried nationally that there was to be a homosexual parade there on the Monday that the Katrina came. And the promise of that parade was that it was going to reach a level of sexuality never demonstrated before in any of the other Gay Pride parades. So I believe…that the Hurricane Katrina was, in fact, the judgment of God against the city of New Orleans.” > Permit government to have a too powerful military: South Korea can go fuck itself, I guess. *Too* powerful DOESN'T = powerful enough. > Permit too powerful police: Rioting in the streets is a-okay. Ditto. > Ways to limit voting: Wrong. Strict voter IDs. Limiting the number of days available to vote. Instead of putting the burden on government to ensure a basic right of the people. If Republicans REALLY wanted to solve the fantasy problem of *in-person* voter "fraud" (where the voter commits fraud, instead of the machines, officials, or other agents)....if they really wanted to solve it, they'd print the photo images of voters directly IN the voter roll books at the voting station! So the attendant can compare pictures along with asking basic questions like address. But they're not interested in solving a made-up problem. --- So...why all the uncanny similarities? Maybe they ARE trying to turn the states into 3rd world dictatorships. After all, the [ten states most dependent on federal money](https://wallethub.com/edu/states-most-least-dependent-on-the-federal-government/2700) are red states. And how do Republican majorities perform? **When Republicans had Presidency, House, AND Senate...** - **1920 to 1930:** they ended with the Great Depression. - **2001 to 2006:** they ended with the Great Recession. - **2016 to ?:** they'll end with no excuses if their kick-people-to-the-curb economics fails (once again).

  • Maye Donnelly

    Alright, good faith answers: **A. What is, in your opinion, "political correctness"?** It's not mere politeness. To go back to the original creation of the term - it's about valuing a political view above facts, common sense or basic empathy. It's dogmatism. **Is it good or bad?** In the sense that I describe it - bad. **What's the appropriate response to "political correctness"?** I'm not sure what the appropriate response is, but I would prefer it if people were not afraid to say what they believe to be true for fear of social retribution or pure tribalism. Yes, even views a reasonable person might think reprehensible. Forcing someone into silence does not change their views, it merely conceals them. **B. How would you characterize "nerd/geek" culture?** Culture that revolves around participation in certain related categories of hobby. Mainly games (tabletop and computer games but not sports), fantastic fiction (comic books, fantasy and sci fi largely) and technical pursuits (such as computer hardware/software). The groupings are fairly arbitrary really. **Who's allowed to participate in "nerd/geek" culture?** Anyone. Why would you want to stop someone? **What "counts" as a video game?** It's more about what counts as a game. And that's a very contentious issue. I would classify a game as something that requires meaningful choices and perhaps a win/lose condition. A novel is not a game, but a Choose-Your-Own-Adventure book is. Snakes and Ladders is notably not a game by this definition. If you're asking about 'walking simulators' specifically, it depends entirely upon how it plays. Dear Esther (which I enjoyed when I first played it) doesn't have any actual choices as far as I know. Firewatch does. The former could be said to be less of a game than the latter. That isn't a value judgement, just a question of categorisation. **When, and in what forms is artistic expression legitimate?** I'm not sure I understand the question. I can't think of a situation in which artistic expression is not 'legitimate'. **C. How would you define "feminism"?** That rather depends on the context. Feminism is the idea that men and women should be treated equally. But it can also be an ideology that goes far beyond that. I don't think self-described feminists themselves can agree on a definition either. **Do you think feminism "went wrong" some time? And if so, when?** Even from the very beginning I think feminism was a mixed bag of good ideas (egalitarianism) and some very strange ones (some of the more esoteric stuff). I feel that the current feminist movement has become counter-productive to say the least but I'm not knowledgeable enough about the timeline to say when or why that became the case. **What's your view on the wage gap?** I think the 70% stat that is often quoted is vastly misleading and doesn't take into account a vast number of subtleties such as occupation choice, part-time vs full-time employment, overtime, wage negotiation differences and the like. I'm quite willing to believe that there is a problem, provided someone can show it to me after accounting for those things, but unfortunately the conversation rarely gets that far. **How about the alleged STEM disparity?** It's complex. From what I've seen in studies of toy selection among very young children (and primates) there are biological differences between men and women that result in different spheres of interest (on average). How much that affects the STEM disparity I couldn't say, but I think it's telling that the numbers are heavily divergent even amongst schoolchildren. In any case, I'd prefer we tried to figure out the cause before jumping straight into the assumption of sexism. **How would you describe your beliefs on patriarchy theory and rape culture?** Descriptions of 'patriarchy', I find are mainly descriptions of the harmful elements of society as a whole. Society does oppress those living within it and especially the most vulnerable. Society makes people conform to its rules and those rules can be awful depending on the culture. But society also gives us everything we have. If we want access to roads and running water and food security, we need to learn to play nice with others and that means giving up a part of our independence. It's a faustian pact, but it's one that works. The idea that patriarchy or society is a male force is basically true. Most leaders and influential people throughout history have been men. And that, I think, is down to differences in psychology between the sexes. Most species of animal have a sex that occupies the dominant hierarchy position. Among mammals, that is most frequently males (but not always). If an alien biologist came from space to observe the human species, they would probably classify humans among that group that includes deer, lions, chimpanzees and gorillas (but not elephants, hyenas or bonobos). Is that hierarchy difference a good thing? No. But it is something that exists. Animals do kill each other but murder is not good either. As for rape culture - it is something that can exist. But doesn't in western culture outside of jails and maybe isolated communities. We consider rape to be one of the most heinous crimes imaginable, sometimes even classing it above murder in severity. The idea that we are supposed to condone or celebrate it baffles me. Rape jokes -such as they are - rely on shock. They elicit humour *because* they are so outrageous. **D. How would you characterize the political leanings of the subreddit?** Diverse. Tending towards liberal/libertarian but with people from pretty much every part of the spectrum. **How would you characterize your personal political leanings?** Labels mean something different to everyone. But let's go with 'culturally liberal, economically libertarian-socialist' if you can imagine such a thing. **Who did you, personally vote for?** In the most recent UK elections I voted for the Green Party. **Do you have problems with politics in the current status quo? If so, elaborate.** That's a helluva broad question but let's go with: There's a complete expectations mismatch between the elites and a large segment of the population in many western countries and the media seems more intent on proselytising than informing anyone of the facts, further obfuscating the problem.

  • Nils Padberg

    DynCorp is one of the three preeminent private mercenary corporations in the world, and is the dominant entity for training security forces in the Middle East. Herbert “Pug” Winokur a lead investor and creator of DynCorp—he was CEO from 1987 to 1991—and previously chaired the finance committee at Enron, where he somehow escaped the scrutiny of federal prosecutors. DynCorp is ubiquitous; it manages the congressional telephone system and does the computerized bookkeeping for a dozen federal agencies, including DOD and HUD, and as such has presided over the loss (or theft) of trillions of dollars. DynCorp has a contract to manage the police and court systems in the US-occupied Iraq. Arthur Anderson is the financial auditor of DynCorp, the same auditor which handled Enron’s books. The HUD Inspector General testified before Congress that HUD had lost $17 billion in 1998 and $59 billion in 1999. In September, 2001 it was disclosed that the Pentagon could not account for $1.1 trillion for the fiscal year 2000. In a separate loss, it later became public that the DOD could not account for $2.3 trillion dollars, amounting to over 25% of its assets. The DOD budget is $480 billion a year, more than all the non-American military spending in the world combined, yet they managed to lose trillions. The financial data processing for the US government accounting systems is performed by DynCorp and Lockheed-Martin. DynCorp was given a $322 million contract to develop, produce, test, and store FDA licensed vaccines for the DOD. DynCorp owns the former Blackwater renamed Xe, renamed Academi, the company that employs the majority of the tens of thousands of security contractors in Iraq. (Source) Dynacorp has also been brought up in front of Congress, along with Dick Cheney’s old company, Haliburton, for their alleged roles in international sex slave rings. “A homosexual prostitution ring is under investigation by federal and District authorities and includes among its clients key officials of the Reagan and Bush administrations, military officers, congressional aides and US and foreign businessmen with close social ties to Washington’s political elite. Reporters for this newspaper examined hundreds of credit-card vouchers, drawn on both corporate and personal cards and made payable to the escort service operated by the homosexual ring.“ (Source) — Washington Times, 6/29/1989 On March 11th 2005, McKinney grilled Secretary Rumsfeld and General Myers on the Dyncorp scandal. “Mr. Secretary, I watched President Bush deliver a moving speech at the United Nations in September 2003, in which he mentioned the crisis of the sex trade. The President called for the punishment of those involved in this horrible business. But at the very moment of that speech, DynCorp was exposed for having been involved in the buying and selling of young women and children. While all of this was going on, DynCorp kept the Pentagon contract to administer the smallpox and anthrax vaccines, and is now working on a plague vaccine through the Joint Vaccine Acquisition Program. Mr. Secretary, is it [the] policy of the U.S. Government to reward companies that traffic in women and little girls?” The response and McKinney’s comeback was as follows: Rumsfeld: “Thank you, Representative. First, the answer to your first question is, is, no, absolutely not, the policy of the United States Government is clear, unambiguous, and opposed to the activities that you described. The second question.” McKinney: “Well how do you explain the fact that DynCorp and its successor companies have received and continue to receive government contracts?” Rumsfeld: “I would have to go and find the facts, but there are laws and rules and regulations with respect to government contracts, and there are times that corporations do things they should not do, in which case they tend to be suspended for some period; there are times then that the – under the laws and the rules and regulations for the – passed by the Congress and implemented by the Executive branch – that corporations can get off of – out of the penalty box if you will, and be permitted to engage in contracts with the government. They’re generally not barred in perpetuity.” McKinney: “This contract – this company – was never in the penalty box.” Rumsfeld: “I’m advised by DR. Chu that it was not the corporation that was engaged in the activities you characterized but I’m told it was an employee of the corporation, and it was some years ago in the Balkans that that took place.” Rumsfeld’s effort to shift the blame away from the hierarchy at Dyncorp and onto the Dyncorp employees was a blatant attempt to hide the fact that human trafficking and sex slavery is a practice condoned by companies like Dyncorp and Halliburton subsidiaries like KBR. What else are we to assume in light of recent revelations that Halliburton subsidiary KBR and Dyncorp lobbyists are working in tandem with the Pentagon to stall legislation that would specifically ban trafficking in humans for forced labor and prostitution by U.S. contractors? And the likely real reason former Gov. Rod Blagojevich of Obama’s home state of Illinois was sacked and jailed, was due to his dogged inquiry into the international sex slave business. “In a letter expected to go to Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld on Friday, Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich said he is troubled by the Pentagon’s inaction on human trafficking and called on Rumsfeld to take aggressive measures to protect human rights. “The time to act is now,” Blagojevich told Rumsfeld, according to a copy of the letter provided by the governor’s office. The letter also touts a new Illinois law, which takes effect Sunday, that Blagojevich says will create stiff new penalties for anyone engaged in trafficking.” (Source) ***** So is this the Grand End Game we are seeing finally being ratcheted up based on critical food and water shortages? Is CCM using its global and government connections to engineer population reduction helped greatly by it being a mega-private investment firm that is not under public scrutiny? “The elderly are useless eaters” Dr. Henry Kissinger from the book, the Final Days.

  • Electa Becker

    When I was in junior high and high school, some of my best friends were Mormon girls. In particular, my friend Gillian, was one of my very best friends, we would talk for hours on the phone, hang out together all the time, etc. We were very close, and we joked about dating each other and getting married, etc. We both knew that wouldn't happen, though, because she was raised LDS and I was raised atheist, and we were both very committed to our beliefs. Later on, when I was 18, I was dating this beautiful, wonderful girl, and I enlisted in the US Army. While I was away, she broke up with me. I was absolutely devastated. I had loved her so much, I had never felt so strongly for someone, never felt so much affection before in my life. I went through my duties in a complete daze, barely talking to anyone, always looking at the floor, etc. Then, two of my comrades, two young Mormon women, sat me down and talked to me. They had noticed that I was in pain, like probably everyone who saw me had, but they were the only ones who came to me to talk to me about it. They comforted me and held me and told me everything was going to be okay. They invited me to come to church with them on Sunday, and I agreed. When I got there, we sat through the service, and the priest giving the sermon ... he sounded as if he were talking directly to me, about my problems and misery in particular. I felt something I had never felt before, I didn't know what it was. I took the sacrament, and this feeling intensified. After the service, I sat down with two young men, missionaries, who talked to me in a way no one had ever talked to me before. I began to feel a burning sensation in my heart, something very alien to me, that I had never felt before. Just as I was noticing this feeling, one of the missionaries said to me, "When the Holy Spirit enters your body, you will feel it as an intense burning sensation in your heart, and that is how you know that God is with you and looking out for you." I was astonished... I wanted so badly to believe that there was some force in the universe that could take this pain from me, and so I did believe it. I converted, and I was baptized the next weekend. I wore the white gown and was gently dipped backwards into the water and lifted back up. The leader of the mission knew that I liked to write journals, poetry, dream journals, etc. and he advised me to write down my thoughts and feelings from the day of my baptism, so I would always have a record of that day, which I did. I read all of the texts and books the missionaries gave me, I studied and I attended Sunday school, I prepared myself with knowledge of the Church and their doctrines and rituals and vocabulary. I received the Aaronic priesthood, and then later on, the Melchizedek priesthood. I received a personal blessing from the leader of the local mission, he placed his hands on my head and prayed to the Heavenly Father to bless me with a lovely and faithful bride to cherish and make my heart whole. I received so much love and support from everyone at the mission, I felt so accepted and secure. Later on, when I got out of the Army, I went back to my hometown. As it happens, one of my best friends throughout elementary school, junior high, and high school, Niko, was being confirmed into the Church the very afternoon on the day I flew home. I had just enough time to drive down to the church, still in my ACUs, to attend. I walked into the room where the ceremony was being held, and sat in the back row, as everything was already underway. Afterwards, my friend went off with the leaders of the local church, and I was greeted by old friends and their parents. I stood up from my chair to say hello, and I told them about how I had converted while I was enlisted. They were ecstatic, and these three girls surrounded me, all smiles and excitement, asking me all kinds of questions about my time in the Army and my path to the Church, etc. I was so overwhelmed with the attention and admiration of these girls, and they were so close, that I went to take a step back, and fell back into my chair... I still laugh when I think about that. I remember, Gillian's first words to me were, "So, Niko told me that you joined the Church!" and I said, "Yes, we can finally get married now!" I said this as a joke, since we always joked about it when we were kids. She didn't take it as a joke, though, she said with real conviction in her voice, "Yes! We really can!" She was so beautiful, and so good and pure and intelligent and funny... I would have been truly blessed if I had married her. Unfortunately, that was not what was meant to be. You see, when I got to my home ward, I realized that the Church was much more than a support group for broken hearts, as it had served me as up until that point. I met with the leader of the ward, and he told me the expectations that the Church had for me. Since I was not raised in the church, and therefore had not had the experience of attending seminary school every weekend and every weekday morning as the children of LDS members had, I had to attend weekend seminary school after the regular service. This consisted of, essentially, a few old men telling us young men how to live our lives. It consisted entirely of rules and limits on our actions and behavior and we were told to feel guilt and shame and contrition for our sins... On top of that, we were told that we had to begin tithing, i.e. 10% of all income had to go to the Church. At my home ward, there was none of the magic feeling, that feeling of a burning heart, or the love and support I had experienced at the mission. The Holy Spirit had left me. It didn't reside here, with these old men and their rules and their greed. I was so disillusioned. I never went back to church, and I never saw Gillian again. I still have those memories, though. That brief time in my life, where despite my upbringing and staunch lack-of-belief, I was able to feel like a believer. Here is an excerpt from my writings from that time: >One of the greatest things that I've ever heard is that in the LDS church, couples are sealed together for eternity, their souls make an unbreakable bond to be forever in union. I told one of the Elders that that was one of the most beautiful things I had ever heard of, that I'd been looking for it all my life. I couldn't stop smiling Sunday, or today. Everything has been filled with light and hope, and my heart has taken on a new glow. It shimmers and it burns, and keeps me far away from the dark thoughts and hopeless feelings I used to dwell upon so often in the past. Truly, truly grateful.

  • Ethelyn Ratke

    I really hate the term atheist, I feel it is very unnecessary, I don't have a special word for my non belief in Poseidon, or tinker bell. I am not a-Poseidon or a-tinkist. There is simply no evidence for their existence, just as there is no evidence for any supernatural phenomenon to have ever taken place. Not one proof that isn't anecdotal. >You've never seen a Demon, had one speak to you late at night in your room have you? You've never witnessed with your own eyes cabinets slamming shut by themselves followed by laughing or an Ouija board flying into a wall when it becomes upset. You don't realize how water dowsing was used to build civilizations. No i have not, because I don't have schizophrenia, take hallucinogenic drugs, nor have I attributed sounds in the dark with more likely and plausible causes, to dark supernatural forces. If you had a video, or a clear recording of said events, or was able to recreate them before my eyes I would believe you. But no one has or can, so until such a day as you have non anecdotal evidence, I cannot accept your claim. People with strong beliefs tend to attribute things they can't understand or seem strange to whatever their belief system says. Impressionable Children are a prime example of what I mean, often attributing night time noises to the boogeyman, or whoever was the villain in the last scary story they heard or movie they watched. A breeze or fan blowing the cabinets shut, odd noises in the night from old duct work or coming from the outside through thin walls, a member of the Ouija board party throwing the board to give everyone a jump, are all much more likely, plausible and honest events, than dark forces which have never ever been verified or documented. Even if evil forces did exist and were influencing people, would that not be cruel of an all powerful, omnipresent, omnipotent god, to allow? What possible purpose would it serve to allow peoples minds to be influenced? Shouldn't an intelligent and loving god allow everyone to clearly see and weigh the facts without interference before coming to a decision on what to believe and how to live? Water dowsing, that is strictly water dowsing, without using environmental, physical, markers to aid the dowser, has been soundly debunked. The flood accounts vary drastically, extent of the flooding, people saved, animal involvement, and so on. Floods have affect humans since their existence and is a worldwide danger, it makes sense that many civilizations would have flood myths. Since these myths are also pre-biblical it is possible that when humans were a smaller population, many were affected by a flood and took their story when they spread out. More likely though, because flooding can always be a danger to humans, these stories arose from many instances of flooding. Civilizations living by volcanoes, or forests, also created large stories and myths about them that cannot possibly be true, it is human nature and ancient practice to tell taller and taller tales when telling stories. In a addition there is no evidence for a global flood and mountains and mountains against it. There simply is not enough water to cover the entire earth, the ark at its size, and in the shape of a box could absolutely not have been seaworthy, the animals in different parts of the earth problem, just to name a few of issues, there are hundreds. >The Bible has no contradictions, yet each book was written at a different point in time, while the writers had no access to the previous books. This is just empirically wrong. Many writers did have access to other books of the bible and used them in their own writings, we see word for word passages taken from parts of the bible and placed in others, and the writers of the new testament CERTAINLY had access to the writings in the old testament and used them to create their narratives in an attempt to craft their story to fulfill prophecy. The bible is filled with contradictions, even the gospels themselves. The reason you don't think so is because you have already decided the bible is the word of god, without a careful examination, and then cherry picked sayings and events from all over it, to try to create a complete picture. I could write for days on this topic, for all books of the bible, but I will just use the gospels as an example. You have to remember that each book was written by an individual, and each individual had their own agenda. The genealogies of Jesus, some gospels are pro Jews, others like Mark are very anti-Jewish, Mathew and Lukes nativity. What did Jesus do right after his baptism? What were Jesus last words? What happened with Jesus tomb and the women? Why were none of the writers eye witnesses of Jesus? This is a difficult medium to discuss this much information on, but the fact is there is contradiction and glaring inconsistency of views, especially in the new testament. >Man thought the world was flat for ages, but the Bible had it written, that the earth was a sphere. Not sphere, circle. Which could have meant anything. And let's not forget how many times the bible talks about the four corners of the earth. >If the big bang were true, at most the only thing that could have come out of it would be bacteria. the mind isn't created by chance, it was designed, science cannot figure out what the mind is, that's because it's our soul, the same thing the Angels are made of. These are all claims you cannot prove. The evolutionary record from bacteria to the diversity we see today provides compelling evidence for its truth. Sure science doesn't currently understand how the mind works, but we certainly see its evolutionary development, and have learned much about it. A god of the gaps argument, you don't understand it fully, therefore god, is a silly way to try to give evidence for gods existence. This belief in a god has a strangle on so many peoples minds because of childhood indoctrination and its prevalence as the only explanation for thousands of years. I firmly believe, if you took a step back, removed all prejudice and preconceived ideas, and examined nothing but the actual evidence, you would find compelling reasons to believe in evolution, and that the Judeo christian god, cannot possibly exist.

  • Jaquelin Windler

    Well this is sort of getting off topic but I hope the mods are ok with it, as it is somehow related to the conflict in a (much) wider context. > do you have any source on those figures ? There is a lot of material on this subject, books, documentaries, lectures, papers from all kinds of disciplines, etc... For a reason it is called the second most studied genocide in history after the Holocaust. If you want a brief, readable, concise and to the point article about the Armenian Genocide you can read this [one published by the US Holocaust Memorial Museum](https://www.ushmm.org/wlc/en/article.php?ModuleId=10008189) which includes the figures. If you want primary sources, google the many academic papers published. >> systematic pattern of coordinated acts > you mean deportation ? Was there systematic coordinated acts of killing armenian civilians by young turks government > Was Ottoman-era government's intention in 1915 deportations was to destroy part of armenian nation ? Is there any proof of it? > Was there systematic coordinated acts of killing armenian civilians by young turks government Good questions. The deportation law and its implementation wasn't the only coordinated act repeated systematically. But I'll only focus on that here. The implementation of the deportation law was part of a set of coordinated acts repeated systematically (that means it was a pattern) which ended up killing so many. That is enough to show the genocidal intent of the government. The interior minister, Talaat Pasha, and other officials along the chain of command, were receiving updates about the implementation of the ongoing deportation orders, and therefore the whole chain of command from the soldier's in charge of the death marches all the way to the interior minister were aware that their orders were killing the Ottoman Armenians. And they still continued until the end. The soldiers continued literally killing the Ottoman Armenians to death, by forcing them to march without food or water in heat or by allowing and/or participating in their rapes and murders (the ones going to the death marches were mainly the women and children - the men were sent to the Ottoman army and were systematically killed there working as hamals). Their superiors who let it happen and their superiors all the way to Talaat Pasha. This alone is enough to prove genocidal intent. So they knew they were killing off a nation and they kept on doing it. And this is if we only take into account the Turkish narrative of the events (for sake of argument). Obviously that is not the only proof for genocidal intent. There are primary and secondary evidence for the intent to exterminate from many sources. Some as blatant as [this](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henry_Morgenthau_Sr.#/media/File:AmbassadorMorgenthautelegram.jpg). But the point is that if you even go by the official Turkish narrative and ignore the narrative rejected by Turkey, it is enough for the committed acts to constitute genocide. The facts on the ground accepted by Turkey are the other requirement of the scope of destruction of a nation. Nobody argues against this. > Moreover, those 3 pashas, they also had certain political ideology (I mean ideology of Young Turks). Does this ideology, one way or another supports annihilation of armenian nation Yes, but it was more the ideology of the CUP in the later years. The ideology of the Young Turks was not nationalism at the beginning. The latter years of the CUP's ideology was tp switch the Ottoman Empire from Islamism to Nationalism. Turkish nationalism to be precise. Armenians simply were in the way for this project. Armenians held a lot of influence and power in the late Ottoman Empire, specifically in the fields of business, trade, foreign relations and general economy. This was another reason, if the Armenians were included in this national project, they would have a lot of power and would eventually either control Turkey or be successful in their independence of Armenia. This power had to be shifted from the hands of Armenians to the hands of the owners of the new Turkish state in the making, first for power consolidation and second for making sure there would be no independent Armenia. Basically this would be the political doctrine for the genocide. > Well, I strongly believe that, there was a systematic pattern of coordinated acts with intention of destroying existence and heritage of azerbaijani people from Karabakh. Total destruction of azerbaijani heritage from occupied territories (take cities like Agdam, Fuzuli) proves it. Well I don't see that as intentional destruction of heritage more so than results of war and total neglect and other non-intentional acts. It is vital to understand that this heritage legally still belongs to Azerbaijan and should be returned to Azerbaijan one day. For contrast look how the Armenian properties were immediately confiscated, auctioned off and laws placed to prohibit any survivors from returning to them. And in any case the acts described in [article II do not include destruction of heritage](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genocide_Convention), so even if what you say were true, it wouldn't count. > And I'm strongly against politicisation of "G" word and exploiting it for political benefits. Comparing without malice is not as bad, and thinking that an event might be a genocide without you knowingly involving yourself in political agendas or simply not knowing enough about the matter is not that bad either. Politicising the term *genocide* knowingly is bad. Not because of Armenians or Azerbaijanis. But because in the future we are going to see another genocide being committed somewhere else in the world and these politicisation will have contributed to it. So I sincerely thank you for this stance of yours and for you last sentence.

  • Hallie Will

    Thank you for the delightfully ignorant response! I could not have requested a more gift wrapped summary of your lack of knowledge on this topic if I had wanted! Lets start with this as you have finally and clearly shown you do not understand it - A scientific theory is different than a theory as we use it in everyday speak. In common parlance a theory would be less than the equivalent of a scientific hypothesis. A scientific theory is defined as: a well-substantiated explanation of some aspect of the natural world, based on a body of facts that have been repeatedly confirmed through observation and experiment. Such fact-supported theories are not "guesses" but reliable accounts of the real world. THAT'S YOUR FIRST GROSS MISUNDERSTANDING IN THIS RESPONSE The god you just posed is intentionally deceptive. Not only that, as you admit the god you pose is not testable, substantiated, and not observable. Therefore by definition it is not science and has no place in a science classroom! THAT'S YOUR SECOND GROSS MISUNDERSTANDING > As we continue to get smarter, we'll learn more and more, and soon some of these more complex theories will become as proven as the boiling point of water. AND HERE'S YOUR THIRD GROSS MISUNDERSTANDING IN THIS RESPONSE. The boiling point of water is a piece of evidence. A fact. Evolution is a fact (its observed). The theory is the explanation of these facts. A theory never becomes a law or anything greater than a theory. Its the top of the "scientific food chain" in regards to explaining evidence. The theory of evolution by natural selection is one of our most well understood theories and in this it is irrefutable. > What evidence do you have that releasing your pen in midair tomorrow will result in it falling to the ground? I have the empirical evidence gathered from all past events (Empirical evidence is information acquired by observation or experimentation. This data is recorded and analyzed by scientists and is a central process as part of the scientific method.) as well as the gravitational theory which predicts it will fall to the ground. History is empirical and scientific evidence. THATS THE FOURTH GROSS MISUNDERSTANDING YOU'VE DISPLAYED IN THIS RESPONSE. >We've already brought up two alternate theories for the existence of humanity. You dismiss them out of hand, but hey! Until you prove otherwise, they will remain on the table. Actually you haven't posed one. Neither Creationism nor ID align with any of the evidence. Neither makes predictions either therefore neither is a scientific hypothesis, let alone theory. >Lumped in with evolution, all 3 are theories that can not be conclusively proven one way or another THAT'S YOUR FIFTH GROSS MISUNDERSTANDING. >Evolution is the most 'down-to-earth' of the three, and therefore meshes nicely with the human ego. It requires the least amount of faith but the largest display of narcissism. Actually presupposing that the divine creator of the universe specifically created us to rule the planet would be the most narcissistic of the lot. Stating that humans are just another species along the evolutionary chain, no more or less evolved than the rest would be the least narcissistic. As you noted, you're projecting again. >Creation is the most 'mystical' of the three, and is the realm of pure faith Actually Creation and ID are the same fucking thing. If its pure faith, what place does it have in the science classroom? None? Got it! > everyone deserves the right to choose how to live their own lives Agreed > choose how to live their own lives and what to teach their children. So its A-OK for these schools to teach that slavery was awesome (it wasn't) because the Bible said so (it did) and we should go back to slavery and that America is a Christian nation (its not) and that a person should not get a transfusion because its the mixing of souls? Where do you get in your head the lie that we're a Christian nation? You realize that of the 10 commandments, the first 5 are in direct conflict with the 1st amendment... the 10th is a direct contradiction of our economic capitalist system, stealing and murder are illegal, and adultery and lying are only illegal in certain situations? In other words 6-8 / 10 are the opposite of our laws and we have a founding document which explicitely states the US was not founded as a Christian nation (Treaty of Tripoli). YOU ARE WHY WE HAVE EDUCATIONAL STANDARDS. SO THAT PEOPLE LIKE YOU DO NOT PASS YOUR IGNORANCE ONTO OUR FUTURE GENERATIONS SO THAT FUTURE GENERATIONS CAN GROW FROM US RATHER THAN HOLDING THEM BACK. Now please explain what this god of mine is. You're right regarding egotism and projection as you have readily portrayed it in your attempts to create controversy to support your mythology. Let me be very clear. If you bring such bullshit into the classroom and ask it to be taught as science, it will be ripped apart and mocked. Every tiny stupid hole in your mythology will be laid bare. Your belief system is not congruous with the world around it and with our knowledge of our universe. And if you bring your belief system into the world of testable tangible science and attempt to present it as equal, it will be mocked because its fucking hilarious. Keep your non-scientific hypothesis out of spaces where they do not belong, where they do not have support, where they cannot hold their own weight and we can continue living in harmony. Keep your religion out of public schools and out of publicly funded schools and let us teach kids actual knowledge rather than attempt to lie to them to make your ego feel better about your sky fairy and we'll be fine. Cross that line and you get people like me... Educated people... Who can speak very knowledgeably about your holy books as well as the holy books of others and dissect them in a scientific manner until kids look at you and wonder why you're trying to brainwash them. Its up to you. I suggest you look in the mirror and recognize that yes, you just want to lie to kids to prop up your failing ego as the world around you passes you by. But really its up to you.

  • Hilda Berge

    *White* by Winry Jude When I fell from the sky, my skull exploded into a thousand colors. I was the only one who started to sing. I am not sure why I did it, but I couldn't hold back the words. *Save tonight, fight the break of dawn, tomorrow... tomorrow I'll be gone.* People were screaming, for such a brief time. Yet, I kept singing. Song after song, years and years of radio vomiting out my mouth. The woman beside me was praying to go, so I sang about Jesus and his love of all the little children. I thought we fell for much longer. I sang everything I could thing of. *Walking in fields of gold...* *Don't say nothing, shh, don't say nothing...* *My Mamma don't like you but she likes everyone...* *I saw the sign and it opened up my eyes.* *Don't ask me what you know is true...* All the words mixed together until it was nonsense in my mouth, a painful blend of tasteless medicine and vibrant curry. I couldn't think of anything but the music, until finally I was singing a jumble of children songs. *Mary had a little lamb, who... row row rowed the boat... gentle down the wheels on the bus went round and round... paddy cake paddy cake the muffin man...* When the plan landed, I don't remember how I got out of the wreckage. I think the door blew off and I just... got sucked out. I must have blocked it out. I have such a fear of wide, deep, dark spaces. I have a fear of falling down into them, of there being something too big beneath me. Of sharks and fish and tentacle monsters. When I ended up on the Island, I was still shaking to the beat of some song I half remembered. Perhaps it was Cher. The song stayed in my head. It stayed as I walked along the beach and muttered to myself. I couldn't figure out where I was. I was just cold and afraid. The first few days I talked to myself, tapping out the heartbeat in my throat with my feet. I found an old abandoned hotel, filled with ration stores. It was creepy, but I had always been fascinated by the eternity and fragility of these abandoned buildings. I used to watch a lot of 'urban exploring' videos on YouTube. So when I went in there, it was with caution and hope. There were sweatshirts with the words EternaTravels written across the breast pocket. When I first got there, I was a wide woman, I could only fit in the 2X, making a weird skirt out of two work shirts when the pants didn't fit. I eventually made a strange dress from some aprons I found in the kitchen. I didn't look like someone who would be rescued by a handsome man in an airplane. I think they would assume I was dead. Look at me, I thought, in the first days. *I am someone who sinks. I am sinking.* Yet, I was almost happy. I had endless food and a bed to sleep on. EternaTravels had a full library and a generator. What seemed like endless days lounging on the beach would be hours, what seemed like hours would be days. I was lost in sunshine. I read books, I walked, I didn't look beyond the hotel. I thought about doing it, but I was so afraid I would never find my way back. It seemed wise when the first tropical storm came. It slashed through the Island like a bewitched woman, screaming loss and pain. The lights went out. That was when I saw the first ghosts. They walked out of the forest and touched the edge of the sands. Then they faded away. Men and women with sandals in their hands, the faint outline of beach bags. They had tropical shirts faded by sunlight and death. There were some children, but they seemed more solid, touching the water but running back to the forest. They seemed to disappear the moment the forest wind ruffled their hair. I didn't know what to think about it. I thought nothing of the ghosts, I didn't want to think about them. But part of me wondered if maybe I was the ghost, living in a lie my dying mind created. Perhaps these people were alive. Perhaps I was seeing the memory of other people? I didn't know. The storms came every three days and with them, the spirits of adults and sometimes children passed through. I didn't leave the building, though it felt heavy and confining. I went out in the daylight, my hands heavy at my sides. I didn't touch the water much anymore. I felt like I would break some pact with the island, that maybe that was how I would die, somehow the ghosts would take me with them. I didn't realize how much time passed, until the pile of books I had read was nearly a mountain in the corner of the library. The shelves were empty, the books were piled into neat little stacks along the walls like an abandoned castle. There had been nearly 3000 books in the room, all of them consumed. I looked in the mirror and saw no change. I realized I had been here far longer than I thought. I had been writing down some things, just to prove I could hold a pencil. I had written the names of the books in a small journal I found, all 2,874 of them. I had also listed the Ghost Walks. I'd been here nearly-- When I finally had the number in my head, there was a sound like the world cracking around me. The generator went out and I was left alone in the hotel. I made my way down the hall to my bedroom, the room I claimed on the bottom floor. I opened the door to find dust covering every surface. The book in my hand seemed a hundred pounds and it fell to the ground. When it touched it became dust. The clothing I was wearing--an EternaTravel sweatshirt, a skirt formed from an old work shirt, and my shoes--remained intact. Which was a blessing, as the next moment someone burst into the room and knocked me to the ground. It was a security guard in dark blue. He demanded to know who I was. I told him, with a dry mouth, "Annabel Lucas..." He pulled me to my feet. He took me out into the sunlight. There I saw the hotel for the first time, as it really was. It was a crumbling building without a ceiling. It looked like it had been bombed or set on fire. "How did you get into here?" he asked. I fell to the ground and everything went dark.

  • Jaycee Bergnaum

    This is very, very similar to my situation and I find it to be common with other male friends I speak to. Once kids come, the relationship changes. First off, my advice is: Everything is going to be OK. This sucks on a bunch of different levels and it hurts badly in so many ways that it's easy to get all wrapped up in and assume the worst. I don't have a "solution" for you but I can pass on a little advice that I'm currently using with some good results. Now, don't get all excited. Those results don't mean SO and I are going at it like rabbits. It just means I understand better what is going on and am working on myself. My relationship is similar where I feel that things should be talked out and resolved while my wife doesn't really see anything as her fault. She doesn't really have the repair cycle of relationships after a conflict. She'll tend to be mad for awhile an pretend the incident never happened. I can't do that. It makes me feel fake if we don't talk about it and come to some realization. My attachment style is somewhat needy while my SO's is a wounded attachment style. This means that I need lots of attention while my SO feels like anything that doesn't go her way is a personal insult that she can never forgive. You can imagine this creates a bit of anxiety and frustration. I've been in marriage counseling by myself for about 8 months now. SO refuses to go because she's "just too busy". To be fair, she is really busy at the moment and I hope that once things calm down in a few months, she'll join me for a few sessions. Here are a couple of thoughts that have helped me over the past few months. 1. A person doesn't need sex to live. Yea, yea... I know all the HL's in here are screaming and pulling their hair out of this comment but it's true. I'm HL and I want sex all the time. After a lot of work, I've come to find out that my urges for sex were not always about the actual sex but about how I felt lonely and really wanted the connection and support of my partner. Yes, I still want sex but it will not kill me if I don't get. I need air, water, food and shelter to live. I don't die if I don't have sex. Also, it not my partner's job to see to it that I am sexually fulfilled all the time just like it's not her job to see that I have air, food, water and shelter. She may decide to help me if I need those basics, but IT'S NOT HER JOB! I'm an adult and I can handle all those things. 2. Also, when I've been denied sex, I act a like a spoiled angry child because I feel rejected. This behavior turns of my SO. I get sullen, angry and non-communicative for days on end. I can barely look at hurt without disgust and rage. Why in the hell would she want anything to do with me if I treat her badly? She treats me like she's the adult and I'm the child because I let that happen. I have started to act like an adult and be upright and less of a child in the relationship. Now, when we talk, I keep my emotions in check no matter how emotional she gets. Just because she's screaming doesn't mean I have to get all intoxicated with emotion and behavior like a child. If she amps it up to 10 emotionally, I stay calm at a 1 or 2. 3. I don't stand up for myself when I should. My role models in my life, my father and my step father, never, ever stood up to my domineering, spoiled mother. I behave the exact same way. If she says she needs, something I leap up and get it. If we disagree on something, I find a way to make sure she gets what she wants. If I resist, she screams at me and gets emotional until I become an emotional cripple and slink off to hide from her. This creates resentment and anger on my part. Sure she gets what she wanted but I'm not happy about and I didn't get what I wanted. We don't communicate well. Because communication between us is so uncomfortable, we only talk as much as we absolutely need to. This means we often miss details which come back to cause more problems. I have this fear that if I tell her exactly what I'm thinking, she we leave me. I have this fantasy that if I ditch her that I will be bluntly honest and open with any new partner so this sort of this won't happen again. The truth is that I'll be like this with ANY new partner unless I change my behavior. So what I'm trying to do now is be as blunt and honest about what I'm thinking with my SO because she can't read my mind. This does not mean I'm walking around shouting my needs at her day and night. It means I'll hold my tongue less and try to find a way to say things that are important to me without suppressing my needs. I also have to be OK with the idea that if I do tell her what I honestly need, she may leave. That's just life. I'm not going to be miserable for someone else. 4. In the relationship, I was very selfish and never spent much time trying to understand her side of things. Having children changes a woman's life in so many ways, it's hard for guys to understand. Things are remarkable different for her than you. Her life has been upended. Yours is slightly altered. OK, that's all about me and not you so... Calm down. You're going to be OK. This sort of thing is common. If you want to work on this, you're going to have to do some homework. 1. Don't have child #2 until you talk about with your wife in great detail. Talk about everything. I had child #2 without talking about all our issues. It made things so much worse. 2. Get into therapy. Go by yourself if she won't go but go. Do it for yourself and do it for your child. Life ain't easy and it helps to have a couch. Find a good therapist and find a new one if the first one sucks. 3. Read books on relationships. Work on yourself. You can't change her. You can only change yourself. She will change her behavior in response to yours. That doesn't mean it will change in the way you want it to. You don't have any control over that. You only have control over yourself. 4. Don't check out. Get back in there. Dust yourself off and be an adult. You can do this. You love each other. Talk to her. Tell her what you feel. Find out what she feels. Work together. Talk to her about how the sex makes you feel. Tell her the truth. She's a big girl. Find out how the sex makes her feel. 5. Don't give up hope. 6. Be ready to leave. Hey, some people aren't meant to be together. If that's the case, work on getting out. Otherwise, plant your feet, do your homework and get in there.

  • Gabe Davis

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  • Landen Carter

    Other posts from /u/SwiggyBloodlust: * [Here is a gift idea for your SOs who don't deflect your JNMILs. (Smartass post!$](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/5o3jjn/here_is_a_gift_idea_for_your_sos_who_dont_deflect/?ref=search_posts) * [A perfect wine to celebrate the holidays with MIL!](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/5hg3ar/a_perfect_wine_to_celebrate_the_holidays_with_mil/?ref=search_posts) * [Anyone see the new Keurig ad that will inspire some of your MILs?](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/5e0quq/anyone_see_the_new_keurig_ad_that_will_inspire/?ref=search_posts) * [We got a live one in Relationships. :(](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/5czde4/we_got_a_live_one_in_relationships/?ref=search_posts) * [[META] A List of Books Recommended by the JMNIL Commenters](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/5amssv/meta_a_list_of_books_recommended_by_the_jmnil/?ref=search_posts) * [Austrian 18yo sues parents for posting child pics on social media](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/52sqhx/austrian_18yo_sues_parents_for_posting_child_pics/?ref=search_posts) * [44yo mother and her 25yo son arrested on incest charges](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/52h3dt/44yo_mother_and_her_25yo_son_arrested_on_incest/?ref=search_posts) * ["Son-in-law 'knew it was mom and not wife in bed'" [from /u/nottheonion]](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/4zfxai/soninlaw_knew_it_was_mom_and_not_wife_in_bed_from/?ref=search_posts) * [It's About Time I Shared — & This Time, It's Personal!](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/4vk1de/its_about_time_i_shared_this_time_its_personal/?ref=search_posts) * [Great security camera with live streaming & night vision for sale on Woot today.](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/4tsl9h/great_security_camera_with_live_streaming_night/?ref=search_posts) * [This may be a spendy way to LITERALLY deflect MIL's photos but worth it!](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/4rwqoj/this_may_be_a_spendy_way_to_literally_deflect/?ref=search_posts) * [Might be a helpful resource to understanding MIL/Mother/child dynamics 'round these parts.](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/4lxacy/might_be_a_helpful_resource_to_understanding/?ref=search_posts) * [Feral MIL advice](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/4gltft/feral_mil_advice/?ref=search_posts) * [MILs are big babies -- forget a baby advice book, what would you add to a MIL advice book?](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/49gdt2/mils_are_big_babies_forget_a_baby_advice_book/?ref=search_posts) * ["A human being will exit your wife, so she's done enough." A fun link for MILs to learn from, as well? ;)](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/45yt5g/a_human_being_will_exit_your_wife_so_shes_done/?ref=search_posts) * [Carolyn Hax: "Do you, Adult Daughter, take Mom to be your scene-stealer so long as . . ."](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/45niqd/carolyn_hax_do_you_adult_daughter_take_mom_to_be/?ref=search_posts) * ["Scientists Discover Children’s Cells Living in Mothers’ Brains"](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/42o91i/scientists_discover_childrens_cells_living_in/?ref=search_posts) * [Blood is thicker than water -- proof your MIL won't like. Enjoy!](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/41rmlm/blood_is_thicker_than_water_proof_your_mil_wont/?ref=search_posts) * [Grandparents Rights — informational links [U.S.-based]](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/3y0xti/grandparents_rights_informational_links_usbased/?ref=search_posts) * ["I had a baby made to look just like him!" and other tales of the hell I escaped.](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/3xqzqu/i_had_a_baby_made_to_look_just_like_him_and_other/?ref=search_posts) * [Another Fb image touting grandma is authority -- bonus, it's from a pet adoption site!](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/3ttrn5/another_fb_image_touting_grandma_is_authority/?ref=search_posts) **** ^(If you'd like to be notified as soon as SwiggyBloodlust posts an update )[^click ^here.](http://www.reddit.com/message/compose/?to=MILBitchBot&subject=subscribe&message=subscribe SwiggyBloodlust)

  • Juwan Block

    Other posts from /u/SwiggyBloodlust: * [Here is a gift idea for your SOs who don't deflect your JNMILs. (Smartass post!$](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/5o3jjn/here_is_a_gift_idea_for_your_sos_who_dont_deflect/?ref=search_posts) * [A perfect wine to celebrate the holidays with MIL!](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/5hg3ar/a_perfect_wine_to_celebrate_the_holidays_with_mil/?ref=search_posts) * [Anyone see the new Keurig ad that will inspire some of your MILs?](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/5e0quq/anyone_see_the_new_keurig_ad_that_will_inspire/?ref=search_posts) * [We got a live one in Relationships. :(](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/5czde4/we_got_a_live_one_in_relationships/?ref=search_posts) * [[META] A List of Books Recommended by the JMNIL Commenters](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/5amssv/meta_a_list_of_books_recommended_by_the_jmnil/?ref=search_posts) * [Austrian 18yo sues parents for posting child pics on social media](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/52sqhx/austrian_18yo_sues_parents_for_posting_child_pics/?ref=search_posts) * [44yo mother and her 25yo son arrested on incest charges](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/52h3dt/44yo_mother_and_her_25yo_son_arrested_on_incest/?ref=search_posts) * ["Son-in-law 'knew it was mom and not wife in bed'" [from /u/nottheonion]](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/4zfxai/soninlaw_knew_it_was_mom_and_not_wife_in_bed_from/?ref=search_posts) * [It's About Time I Shared — & This Time, It's Personal!](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/4vk1de/its_about_time_i_shared_this_time_its_personal/?ref=search_posts) * [Great security camera with live streaming & night vision for sale on Woot today.](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/4tsl9h/great_security_camera_with_live_streaming_night/?ref=search_posts) * [This may be a spendy way to LITERALLY deflect MIL's photos but worth it!](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/4rwqoj/this_may_be_a_spendy_way_to_literally_deflect/?ref=search_posts) * [Might be a helpful resource to understanding MIL/Mother/child dynamics 'round these parts.](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/4lxacy/might_be_a_helpful_resource_to_understanding/?ref=search_posts) * [Feral MIL advice](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/4gltft/feral_mil_advice/?ref=search_posts) * [MILs are big babies -- forget a baby advice book, what would you add to a MIL advice book?](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/49gdt2/mils_are_big_babies_forget_a_baby_advice_book/?ref=search_posts) * ["A human being will exit your wife, so she's done enough." A fun link for MILs to learn from, as well? ;)](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/45yt5g/a_human_being_will_exit_your_wife_so_shes_done/?ref=search_posts) * [Carolyn Hax: "Do you, Adult Daughter, take Mom to be your scene-stealer so long as . . ."](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/45niqd/carolyn_hax_do_you_adult_daughter_take_mom_to_be/?ref=search_posts) * ["Scientists Discover Children’s Cells Living in Mothers’ Brains"](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/42o91i/scientists_discover_childrens_cells_living_in/?ref=search_posts) * [Blood is thicker than water -- proof your MIL won't like. Enjoy!](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/41rmlm/blood_is_thicker_than_water_proof_your_mil_wont/?ref=search_posts) * [Grandparents Rights — informational links [U.S.-based]](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/3y0xti/grandparents_rights_informational_links_usbased/?ref=search_posts) * ["I had a baby made to look just like him!" and other tales of the hell I escaped.](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/3xqzqu/i_had_a_baby_made_to_look_just_like_him_and_other/?ref=search_posts) * [Another Fb image touting grandma is authority -- bonus, it's from a pet adoption site!](https://www.reddit.com/r/JUSTNOMIL/comments/3ttrn5/another_fb_image_touting_grandma_is_authority/?ref=search_posts) **** ^(If you'd like to be notified as soon as SwiggyBloodlust posts an update )[^click ^here.](http://www.reddit.com/message/compose/?to=MILBitchBot&subject=subscribe&message=subscribe SwiggyBloodlust)

  • Gonzalo Strosin

    TL;DR I watch the fourth season of *American Horror Story* as some people watch heartwarming home movies of T-Ball games. I first became interested in "monsters." When I was just learning to read, my grandparents were the type to allow kids to follow their own curiosity. I had a couple of Little Golden Books and Dr. Seuss, but all I wanted to do was hang out with the teenagers, do what they did, read what they read. My mom was going to college to learn how to be a therapist for severely developmentally disabled children. She specialized in helping kids who looked so horrific, most people couldn't even stand to look at them without crying or vomiting. I also got to be at my mom's work sometimes because I was a victim of contaminated city drinking water. I was never clear on what exactly the contamination was, but it attacked my urinary tract worst of all and I had to have repeated cystoscopies in my bladder. So when I went to the hospital, it was a terrifying ordeal - but I also got to see my mom more often. And I'd been reading her textbooks. It was hard to sound out words like "maxillofacial," but it was like a fun game. I picked up lots of medical vocabulary. We also discovered that, like my mother, I am not in the least bit fazed by seeing a Harlequin infant or someone with multiple chromosomal issues. They were just kids like me. Some kids have lots of gross cysts inside, like I did. Some kids have five extra webbed toes and flippers for hands. Some kids have brown hair. It's just part of the package. To me, the hospital and everything going on in it was another setting for "normal." I was often placed next to a child who was struggling with being hospitalized. When she got her placement after college, it was at an "Institute for Mental Defectives." The institution was little more than a dumping ground for babies and children with severe health issues. Abuse of the nonverbal children especially was rampant. Overcrowding. Neglect. Funding had been cut so severely that the only people interested in working there were either recent grads still convinced they could make a difference, and fucking sociopaths looking for a vulnerable population. Then the institutions were allowed to go broke, and most of the kids and adults were "transitioned." Some to other facilities and care homes, but for most, there was just nothing. A lot of the adults became homeless and died shortly after deinstitutionalization. I don't think the people who pushed deinstitutionalization so heavily really gave a shit. The point was to lower taxes, and people will happily kill someone else's grandparents if they get $2.00 more back on their refund. Deinstitutionalization was why I refused to say the Pledge of Allegiance in school. I got sent to the principal's office, threatened with paddling, he held the paddle in his hands while he asked my mother if he could hit me with the paddle for not saying the pledge (a couple years earlier they didn't have to ask), and he was upset when my mother thought my little protest was great. I would keep going to the principal's office, they made me look at the paddle, and then I'd go back to class. I got punished a lot for stupid bullshit at that school. My mom worked on getting me into a better school. As my mother's patients slowly found placements, this usually left her with the most severe cases since she worked with kids my age. I loved going into work with her. I would sit there and color with the "Mental Defectives." There weren't many enrichment supplies aside from crayons and paper, but sometimes just a difference in routine was enrichment. I remember teaching them duck duck goose. Most of the kids I played with couldn't understand the complexity of the game, and most of the ones that had functioning mouths were nonverbal. But when I was supposed to tag a "goose," the kid who was "it" made noise and clapped. I would be "chased" by the goose and pretended to run and then be caught. Every time I was caught, the groaning sort of laughter that came up from the group... to anyone else it might sound like The Walking Dead Mormon Tabernacle Choir, but to me it was the sound of pure joy from a group that did not often experience it. Not long after the institution was closed, stories of hauntings by "monsters" showed up. People dared their friends to go in the building. A place where I used to play was a fucking carnival attraction, and my friends - wherever they'd gone to, however long they lived - were now freakish boogeymen. On more than one occasion I have told someone off for engaging in that urbex horror shit. Not all urbex do this, not even the majority, but those who engage in the "haunted asylum" genre do tend to utterly dehumanized people who lived their *entire lives* as less than human. It's bad enough people here, and in Willowbrook, and in Danvers, were often abused by the very people who were supposed to care about them. Now there is an entire cottage industry around disrespecting their very memories. My friends were called monsters. But monsters are only things that we create. Making someone into a monster is what happens when we'd like to pretend that we have an orderly, reasonable, and just society. Anything that falls outside of that pretense so violently and tragically that we have to ignore it to be able to look ourselves in the mirror is a "monster." I don't believe in monsters.

  • Fredrick Flatley

    > I forget if it was ever directly said in the show, but the Art Book for Season 1 confirms that he used bloodbending to block their active chi paths. Again with the art book. You literally cannot leave big plot holes like this in the show and then just explain them away in an art book that most people are not going to buy/read. If this was the real reason then they absolutely should have explained it in the show. Not to mention it kind of waters down the impact that taking away someone's bending had in the first series, that was a gigantic spectacle. I would have preferred them to just say "oh amon can energybend" and be done with it. It still would have been ridiculous but at least slightly less so than the implication that advanced water benders can literally take someones bending away. >That didn't really happen in TLOK either though outside of one or two points. It seems like it could be that you have to actively want to talk to Raava for her to respond. I mean....you're just speculating. There's no given reason why you should have to WANT to talk to Raava for her to say something, that feels like a paper thin excuse. She talked to Korra when she was at her lowest point about to give up, I can think of plenty of moments in Avatar where that would have come in handy. Raava does not mesh well with the original series. >I personally never found any that fell flat. I mean, I can't argue with how the series personally made you feel or what happened to resonate with you. I just found it extremely odd that Mako and Bolin basically came to a stand still in their relationship, especially considering it had just been the two of them for nearly their entire lives. Unalaq had almost no relationship with his kids, so that was terrible. Korra and Naga split for seemingly no reason. Even the Korra / Asami relationship could have been way better developed. Team avatar as a whole felt very disconnected, like only two of them could ever be developing at once. > Iroh has no way to know for sure that only some benders can do that. I think he made an assumption about lightning generation. I mean, he also says that to perform it requires peace of mind, but Azula was able to in the finale despite being emotionally instable and growing more and more insane. Uh.....no. Iroh is a master firebender with years upon years of experience bending the elements, in addition to being one of the wisest men living. If the writers wanted to imply that he made an incorrect assumption, they would have pointed it out. You don't have a character give exposition to the audience and then retroactively contradict yourself without giving any explanation. Azula was a firebending prodigy with previous experience producing lightning, there's no reason she would suddenly lose this ability. > When dealing with canon it certainly does. No it really, really doesn't. Art books are for mentioning cool fun facts you couldn't fit into the show or fun info about why you designed something a certain way. They're not for explaining away major contradictions / plot holes as a foot note. Imagine if it was never explained how Aang took Ozai's bending away and then in an art book they were like "oh yeah! It was a lion turtle!". > She certainly would. Being a chief of police for a rather large city is going to put a lot of stress on her. Wanting to maintain her public image as well as not be super hard on her kids means that she would let what Su Yin did slide. That was super morally abhorrent, if Toph was going to pull a move like that then it needed to be further explained. I can't reconcile someone who abuses her position and is flippant about her own children having a relationship with their fathers with who Toph is as a person. As some else said in this thread, part of Toph's character growth in A:TLA was learning to be more self aware showing respect to the people in her life. This seems like she's taken two steps back when realistically after so many years she should be leaps and bounds forward. > I think you misunderstand the point. Lion Turtles gave people the ability to control elements. They were little more than Element-tossers, like what the Aye-aye spirit called the people from the city Wan came from. Badermoles, Dragons, Sky Bison, and the Moon&Ocean are how people learned bending. No, I completely understood what you were getting at but my point still stands. In Avatar it was pretty clear Bryke intended the original benders to be the ones who actually taught people to use the innate ability inside themselves to control the elements in the first place - no Lion Turtle middle man needed. In Korra they retroactively added the element of "wait there was a step before that where we had to GRANT them the ability to manipulate the elements in the first place!" which was IMO unneeded. I don't know why people having the innate ability to control elements in a fantastical world is any more ridiculous to you than lion turtles for some reason having the innate ability to control the elements in a fantastical world and then giving that ability to humans by.....touching them? > To an extreme degree. Like seriously very few people nitpick to this degree. I was just talking about the Iroh thing as it was one of many examples I was using to illustrate a larger point. There's a reason many people feel Korra fell vastly short of its potential, and it's not just because of nitpicking.

  • Erick Ullrich

    Yay, more adventures! Let’s see what I can help with… Build: Healer who absorbed the holy grail. Has hypnosis powers of impenetrable force field and flight. Magic powers include: most Faith spells, summoning spirits and recent dead, and synthesizing flesh. **Squid Bait:** I’m surprisingly well suited to being bait. I have healing, flight, and force fields to act as a backup if anything goes wrong. Sign me up! **Fetus Monster:** While my shields might come in useful here, I don’t think I’ll be much help for this one. I’ll drop off a supply of healing water to help out any of the afflicted women and children. The E-Team hunters and trackers will also get a supply, but I will sit this one out. **Dueling Empowered:** I have no real diplomacy abilities apart from Helpful Stranger, and I don’t think that will be enough in a literal warzone. I’ll have to pass on this one too. **Mosul Dam Disaster:** I could most likely gain entry into Iraq pretty easily if I offer humanitarian aid for whatever is going on with the dam. If the dam breaks and the crack is relatively small, my force fields could patch it until help arrives. If the cause is from the Astral Plane, I’ll be able to see it immediately. Blessings and Wards might help too, so I’ll bless anyone in the immediate area. If I can’t avert the disaster, I can convert all of the water to healing water, which should hopefully help save anyone who gets caught in its path. **Psychic Outbreak:** I can help with this! Healing, blessings, wards, being able to see into the Astral Plane. This one is right up my alley. If it’s caused by something mundane, my healing water will fix it. If it’s caused by something on the Astral Realm, Purify, Seal, or Wards should do it. **Kilauea Fire Demons:** Helpful Stranger might be good for this, but as a ‘holy’ person, I’m not sure how ‘demons’ would react to me. Since I have no translation abilities, I’ll sit this one out too. Also, if it ends up taking two months, I might not have the time anyway. **Results: Squid Bait:** It looks like the squid incident went swimmingly. I’ve made friends with another pre-cog and another flier. Although I can already fly, they might be willing to practice with me so that we can become more agile in the air. I donate the money to charity and the E-Team as I’m already flush with Cash from the Bay Area Incident. **Fetus Monster:** The healing water should help with those afflicted, but with no tracking abilities of my own, it looks like I couldn’t have done much to help anyway… **Dueling Empowered:** Oh shoot…this is the Bay Area incident all over again. I wasn’t there for the fight, but I’ll go in at some point and attempt to Seal the rift. Since that probably won’t work, I’ll keep an eye on the area if it needs Purifying due to undead monsters coming through. **Mosul Dam Disaster:** I might have actually foiled the Yellow Lantern Ring User’s plan by accident. Since I wanted to go around blessing and warding everyone, people would have been reassured. I would also tell everyone about my plans with my force field as well as the healing water, which should dispel a lot of the fear. And I’ve made a bunch of new friends here too. :D I think the E-Team’s clout should be able to get Arash’s empowered entry to the US if we need their help. **Psychic Outbreak:** This one would go pretty much perfectly. I can heal the health workers, and I can see into the Astral Plane and identify the cause. I can gather the afflicted together. A few wards/blessings should detach the creatures from their hosts, and Purify will destroy them. I can also use my healing water and Summon Recent Dead to revive any of the zombies back into normal people. The bigger creature should still be vulnerable to Purify or Seal, so it won’t be much of a threat. **Kilauea Fire Demons:** Well, it looks like I probably could have helped here. The ‘demons’ weren’t real demons and probably wouldn’t have reacted badly to me. At least nothing went wrong because I wasn’t there. Overall, I’m happy with my choices. Although there are some fairly drastic consequences for a few, they aren’t things I had the power to prevent anyway. And I ended up making a bunch of friends/allies as well as helping a bunch of kids. Also, Arash is now the leader of the Iraqi division of the E-Team. I think he’ll be able to find plenty of allies. **Schedule:** I want to do some magical studying, so I’ll calculate out how much time I have. For the Squid Bait, It should take a month (two weeks for prep and two weeks on the boat). I can still study in my Atelier for the first two weeks and bring a few books on the boat with me, but on the boat, I’ll be limited to a 4 hour day, as I won’t have my Atelier to help me recover strength/make my spells more efficient. I would say that the Mosul Dam Disaster would be over with fairly quickly (two weeks?) if I was particularly visible about blessings, wards, and my plans. The Yellow Lantern Ring User wouldn’t get anywhere near the power he needs to hurt anyone. The Psychic Outbreak should be contained within 24 hours as I would be able to spot the problem immediately and destroy the creatures easily. Overall, I would have about two months of normal study and two weeks of part-time study for magic. Since this comment is already quite long, I’ll reply to this comment with my magical training schedule.

  • Maxine Donnelly

    Whenever someone opens with "no offence" the following is always offensive so uh, I'll just, skip on saying that. Instead: >Taking care of a disabled relative. You're a good person. --- Okay uh, back to the incel discussion. This submission has 130 comments by now. For a topic about a lack of passion in people's lives the conversation about this lack sure is passionate. >Feeling that way is exactly an example of a lack of empathy though. The sentence preceding that was me literally saying I lacked empathy for them. So, yes. Got me there. Doesn't mean I don't understand they're in pain, how they got this way, or why they are this way. Show me what they do about it. >**I did my best at literally every venue that offered a chance of increasing my sex appeal.** I did all that **while getting an education, while job-hunting, while starting a career, while taking care of a disabled relative.** I did my best and exhausted all venues, and still **I wasn't attractive enough for even the most desperate women around.** Highlighted those phrases to be a bit pedantic and inquire a bit more. Word choice is always illuminating: * "I did my best at literally every venue that offered a chance of increasing my sex appeal." [You either did your best and it wasn't good enough OR you didn't do your best.](https://youtu.be/xKzMd328bMw) Great excuse to share a classic clip from a classic post. Furthermore, *literally* every venue? *Literally?* Literally, meaning actually and without exaggeration, every venue? * "I did all that while getting an education, while job-hunting, while starting a career" ...So, like every other human on the planet, incel or not? * "I wasn't attractive enough for even the most desperate women around." The very fact you used the word 'desperate' signals to me that maybe it was your attitude that was holding you back (I'll get back to this, so I'll leave a number place holder [1]) ... Also... Did you try the perpetually high, meth-addicted single mother with eight children and six teeth living in a trailer park and uses a hole in the backyard to poop in because the water was cut 'cause she couldn't pay the bill that month? I could "easily bet a large amount of money" that she would have been down to clown. >Of course. Because she would rather save herself than be saved by someone who isn't Hercules. Ha, buddy. Was quoting a goofy song lyric for comedic effect... Did you listen to the song? Anyway, ahaha... If you've read the mythology you know that Hercules wasn't exactly the *ideal* husband... I wouldn't want a Hercules... Oh boy. Like not being ripped literally into two. >you can't expect men not to be frustrated when they are denied even the opportunity to become Hercules. Not going to take that line boringly seriously like you did with me quoting a cover of a ridiculous 80's Bonnie Tyler song from the Shrek 2 with the retort "...Dude. Do you actually know the mythology of Hercules? Shitttttty husband!" 'cause I don't think she, like you, thought much further than surface knowledge of the trails of Hercules and that he was a hero (Greek heroes typically do not spring to mind the modern usage of the word 'hero' let me tell you...) Instead, I'll point out the self-fulfilling prophecy here: being the kind of guy that thinks he can be "denied" the opportunity to overcome adversity (trails of Hercules) is being the kind of guy who would probably would never become Hercules if given it. Take a moment to think about that. Finally, I know you opened with this so I'll close with it. Then get a coffee. >You're ascribing to incels a negative trait that you don't know is there... as someone who until very recently used to identify as an incel, and who spent a lot of time communicating with other men who struggle to find any intimacy and any validation at all, I could easily bet a large amount of money that you haven't had to work nearly as hard for whatever sexual success you have, as I've worked for literally no result at all. You say that until recently you identified as an incel, so going to guess that you indeed get laid/had an intimate relationship with a woman/found validation etc.? Regardless, you're ascribing to me a positive trait that you don't know is there. I'm 23. I never had sexual success until I was 21. Want to know why? [Check out the character Taylor Swift plays in this obnoxious song](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VuNIsY6JdUw) Watch it. *Cringe.* [1] There's that place holder. Like Taylor Swift and Elliot Roger I'm not exactly hideous to look at, and not only that but I was the Supreme Lady! Wasn't a slut! Was intelligent and into books and not some materialistic, superficial bimbo that was only interested in boys and fashion and Britney Spears! I didn't dress like a fucking whore either. Not only that, but I was always so nice and did everything I could for guys and yet they'd always pass on me? [Why couldn't **I GET A GUY?!**](http://hotelconcierge.tumblr.com/post/87341171254/dont-become-elliot-rodger) That is a dark mirror.

  • Anais Williamson

    Thank you, and if i may repay the compliment by saying it's nice to speak to someone who is willing to consider things in a more nuanced way. However i'm just going to ramble incoherently about things now... I think a lot of the problem in the world is that people in the middle east don't learn anything good about the west and we don't learn anything good about the middle east or Islam, actually I watched one of mufti menk's ramadan lecture series about the life of the prophet, he's incredibly popular in the Muslim world and a really interesting and clever guy, i don't agree with everything he says of course but i can't deny he's saying it from a good and honest heart, his vision of Islam is something i always keep in mind when people talk about how Islam just a pure bad religion or antiquated or etc, i mean of course if you take sections from the Koran it's antiquated and of course if you look at the most regressive and reactionary places in the world then it looks awful but if we judge Christianity by just the snake charmers and mega-churches in america then it doesn't look great either... looks at the treatment of homosexuals in Africa and England - and remember just because we've passed a fairly visible threshold in acceptance doesn't mean we're so far ahead, gay bashing was something that older friends of mine had to contend with in the sixties - of course rich counties where people like us have endless time to moralise are going to advance quicker in such things and of course while we do this there are probably people funded by our taxes blowing little children into pieces because they were near someone our government had decided had links to people we think are rightly or wrongly opposed to us and our wider economic interests.... i dunno, maybe i'm just odd but that doesn't sit right with me, it really doesn't. actually in fairness to myself i do spend most of my spare time trying to help create the things we as a species need to develop so we can put these petty games and idiotic conflicts behind us - humanity needs to learn we are all the same kin, we are all amazing machines full of passion and understanding and that if we combine our efforts and work on solutions to the many little problems we all face then we'll be able to make a world in which no one need suffer, in which poverty is a thing children wonder about in their history books and idle minds like ours try but fail to grasp, just as today we may wonder what life in the neolithic was actually like - we'll never be able to understand, not even if we went there. Personally I'm working on automated horticulture, on computer based educational systems and learning resources that all people to learn how to grow their own food, fibre and medicine with the same ease kids learn computer games -- it's only a tiny part of a huge puzzle which much more significant minds are working on but i'm doing my part where and how i can, or trying to at least and that's as best as i can ever do... It's an open source project of course so that anyone in the world anywhere can use, copy, build on or expand my work or mix it with the work of others, draw inspiration form it and do whatever they like just as long as we get ever better abilities to make our gardens fruit and our store cupboards overflow - monks were once really important in this regard actually, sadly the faithful fell of a bit and got self-indulgent and forgot about actually helping the poor and feeding the hungry, all their apple breeding and mead making [water purifying] has gone to the winds... personally i think they should pick it back up, the catholic church isn't shy of technology they could start producing genuinely good open source technology designed to help impoverished people improve their lives, i mean they really could - or at least they could make serious efforts to fun the people who are doing it, to get them support and help from their devout followers and complex system of churches spanning the world - every church tower should have a server rack in it distributing wikipedia, librivox, and all the millions of awesome learning resources so that people can leave their devices downloading while they're listening to the lord and then go home and learn hydro-mechanics or find out what's wrong with their child using the WHO impoverished community diagnostic app [which doesn't exist either yet despite the huge adoption of smartphones in africa (where they haven't the phonelines for broadband)] I guess what i'm trying to say is there are many possible worlds, we really need to be careful we don't get stuck in the notion that it's either fight or be fought - war isn't the only option, bloodshed isn't humanities only choice - we can be more than that, we can work towards better things than eternal conflict. There's a whole solar-system to explore, with seven billion people all educated and informed and engaged on a shared global ideal of mutual progress for the betterment of humanity and outreach into the cosmos we could spend out retirement sipping martins on Pluto laughing about how awesome our new age resistant cyborg bodies are...

  • Krystal Halvorson

    I'm not sure that Mexican gender roles are any more strict than anywhere else. Patriarchy is the water we all swim in - it's easier to see when we're looking at someone else's aquarium. Pre-conquest and colonial history are definitely not my fields, but as an interested outsider, I can at least recommend some books: There's a lot of disagreement about how gender worked in Mayan societies, for sure, and I think also Zapotec and Mexica and others. If you're interested, start with Nancy Farriss. For colonial history, the historiography of gender is fantastic - super-smart and often fun to read as well. Sonya Lipsett-Rivera's most recent book is great. Chris Boyer on bigamy is good too. Kathryn Sloan is a little more dry but still well worth reading. For the independence period through the early nineteenth century, look at Rob Buffington, Pablo Piccatto, and Steve Stern. (I'm limiting myself to books in English here.) What I draw from the work of those (and many other) historians is that at the beginning of the 20th century, families were the most important institution in most people's lives, despite vigorous church and government efforts to put themselves in the "head of household" role. One of the ways that families (all the members of a household, let's say) ensured the survival and well-being of household members was to maintain and increase the honor/respectability of the family. This was most easily done by male heads of household displaying their control over female household members' sexualities (i.e. by insisting on the appearance of having a lot of children who they supported, and the appearance of not allowing any other man sexual access to any woman in the household.) Rich households did this through access to the courts - people were dragging each other into court all the time, producing many helpful documents my colleagues can read now - but poor households managed this through masculine violence. (Lipsett-Rivera and Lyman Johnson have an edited volume on how this worked in colonial Latin America which I highly recommend. Look for Johnson's article about carpenters in Buenos Aires.) So what happens to this in the 20th century? Most importantly, the Revolution and post-Revolutionary state efforts to gain and keep power, plus global transitions in gender roles and ideologies. The Revolution was, among other things, a *really big war.* Millions of people were put into motion - sent from country to city, or one part of the country to another, or over the border, or just killed. They might be separated from family, placed in the company of strangers who became intimates, made suddenly poor or (much more rarely) rich. As Carlos Monsiváis and Gabriela Cano have pointed out, this provided many opportunities for people to reinvent themselves - especially important for trans* and queer people, but also anyone else who just wanted to try out new things. But also this meant that for many people, the protective framework of family was gone, and had to be remade, or replaced with something new. Once the fighting stopped, and a shaky new state was trying to legitimize itself, men and women could get state support for all kinds of experiments of this nature by saying their project was "revolutionary." A special school for women gym teachers? Sure! A photography exhibit about women industrial workers? why not! A national tour of a filmstrip about how to avoid getting VD? Go for it! And so on. Other key words people used for this kind of project were "modern" and "scientific" and "progressive" and hygienic." People who opposed the new government therefore defined themselves and their projects as "traditional" - these were things like magazines meant to teach young women servants how to behave, and vigorous opposition to a government sex ed program that did not exist, and so on. So a binary of gendered stereotypes emerged which applied especially to women, the traditional and the modern. The "new woman" of the 1920s globally got folded in to this discourse, which is why "traditionalists" of the 1920s attacked short-haired flappers ("pelonas") on the streets. Male violence in defense of masculine prerogatives was quite old in Mexico (as elsewhere) but the local and global contexts were new. This traditional/modern binary got baked into Golden Era Mexican film (1935-55), often in deliberately comic ways. Some of the great movies about machismo were intended as mockery of machismo, or so Sergio de la Mora says. Then TV comes along in the 1950s and is immediately filled with reruns of those classic movies. So, tl;dr version: you're better off looking to the 1880-1940 period for a deep history of Mexican patriarchy, not Spanish colonialism or indigenous cultures.

  • Joanny Watsica

    Sure, I can do that. I don't know how much detail you want so sorry if I go overboard. Either you want the literal details or you want to know what I know generally; I think you mean the latter but if you wanted the first, PM me. Here's what I know generally: As far as her family tree goes, I have it back numerous generations from her. I know who both her parents are, their parents, and so on. I know almost exactly (as in where on a plat map) she lived when my ancestor was born, as well as during most of her life. Her father died roughly 1855 or so, and her mother remarried to a local farmer. However, her mother died in about 1859 as well. So, she and her under 18 siblings ended up living with their stepfather after that. My ancestor would have been conceived late September or early October of 1860, assuming a full-term birth -- thus not long after her mother died. She was not employed at that time according to the 1860 census, which would have been enumerated a few months before conception. [One note here: I have found no evidence that I am related to her stepfather in any way.] In July 1863, she gave my ancestor up for adoption to a local couple who as far as I can tell could not have children of their own. [Another note here: I have not found any evidence that I am related to the adoptive parents either.] Before the next census she moved with her stepfather to a different, nearby county. She ended up getting pregnant again and having another child just prior to the collection of the 1870 census. She said she was married and had the surname of her child for the 1870 census (she was listed as being employed as a "charwoman"). In reality she did not truly get married. No one by the surname of her child was living in the county of the child's birth between 1860 and 1870. I have found no evidence that the supposed father existed at all -- the name could have been made up. She did keep this child until he was an adult, unlike my ancestor. At some point in 1872 she got pregnant again, and very shortly after got remarried to a man in a different county -- I am highly confident that for whatever reason she had moved out of her stepfather's house and was living in the county where she was married. This time the marriage was official and on the books. Unfortunately I can find absolutely no evidence of that man's whereabouts either before or after her marriage (though I can find who I believe are his relatives -- the surname is exceedingly rare). However, very shortly after her third child was born in 1873, she abruptly remarried yet again, and I think the absence of the previous husband, the birth of the child, and the choice of the last husband are connected. Basically, I think the baby came out.. "the wrong color". This child, unlike her others, was listed on censuses as "mulatto", and her final husband was black. The child had the surname of the black husband. I was able to do a lot of research on the last husband -- he was a former slave and I was able to locate his owners, as well as his mother and several siblings. They lived in the same city for a few years, but then do not show up in any records again until 1885 far away in a distant county in the same state. From there the family regularly appeared in newspaper articles for various reasons. Her white son was a drunkard and petty criminal. He was abandoned by his wife and lived in obscurity for a couple of decades before becoming a barber far away. Her mixed race son joined the military but left because of health problems. Local business people put together a fund to send him to a doctor out of state. He got married, but his only child and wife both died early and young (of tuberculosis). He remarried, moved to the end of the earth, never had kids again, and died extremely poor. The last husband of my ancestor's mother died in 1897 from water intoxication, if the newspaper is to be believed. She lived on the goodwilll of the people of the town from there on, receiving the modern equivalent of welfare. She lived alone, unemployed, until she died in 1911. According to census records, she knew she was the mother of three living children. However, her relationship with them was apparently non-existent. After she died, the people of the town held her home and property for about seven years before finally announcing that it would be put up for sale as her heirs still had not been located. So I will let you make of all of that what you will. Hopefully it illustrates what I am up against. For what it is worth, the person I suspected was the father was a relation of the adoptive mother. He matched all the criteria that you mentioned for being the father. He moved away immediately after my ancestor was conceived, though several months later moved back. While my ancestor would have been in his first year of life, that man joined the army to fight in the civil war. He never returned home and died while a prisoner of the CSA. My ancestor was adopted about two weeks before the suspected father died in the military prison hospital. Having said all of that, I have failed to turn up any DNA matches related to this individual.

  • Kayla Wolf

    >Hmm. Less choices is better? That sounds... weird. So, what you're telling me is that we're on a big ball of dirt floating in nothing, around a ball of burning gas, and we're being kept from hurling off because it's so big? Yeah, most true things sound weird when you're ignorant. Decision fatigue. Look it up. >Now you're really off the deep end. Or I'm literally parroting back basic systems thinking to you. Seriously, there's a science for this. In fact, here's a quote: >he best way to deduce the system’s purpose is to watch for a while to see how the system behaves. If a frog turns right and catches a fly and then turns left and catches a fly, and then turns around backward and catches a fly, the purpose of the frog has to do not with turning left or turning right or backward but with catching flies. If a government proclaims an interest in protecting the environment but allocates little money or effort towards that goal, environmental protection is not, in fact, the government’s purpose. Purposes are deduced from behavior, not from rhetoric or stated goals. So, if by off the deep end, you mean I actually read, then you're right. I read. I admit it. I'm off the deep end in information. Doing the fucking breaststroke. >Poverty is a feature of humanity. Humans were born into poverty. You think the Native Americans had bank accounts and books and iPhones? Hell no, they were practically destitute. They had little to no means of production. Which is why, when our civilizations clashed, the Native Americans lost out. So, you don't understand the subject we're discussing. Poverty is not just constituted by the failure to meet the income guidelines set forth by the IRS. Poverty is a state of resources insufficiency. It's not having enough food, water, shelter, safety, etc. No, the Native Americans were not impoverished. Neither were pre-colonial African tribes that practiced hunter-gatherer lifestyles. People are born without money. People are not universally born without resources. >Which is why, when our civilizations clashed, the Native Americans lost out. Or, and bear with me here, it might have been the germ warfare that wiped out millions of them between conquistadors (then again with the infected blankets at Fort Pitt). Followed closely by the development of extreme warlike tendencies motivated by a state of non-monetary poverty that can directly be attributed to an agrarian lifestyle and a finite supply of land with an ever-expanding population living off of it. Sapiens and The World until Yesterday are great books to read if you need help with understanding human history.. or even some basic anthropology. >You're solution is govt govt govt. More govt. I'm not sure what you have against one of the greatest inventions in human history. That's not true. I think it's the fact that you don't know the value it has to us because you've never existed outside of it. My solution is systems. Government is an efficient mass delivery mechanisms for systems. My solution is science. Government is a good funding platform for science. My solution is **SOCIETY**, something that you would find it increasingly difficult to maintain without a government of the size we have, if only for the reason that an agreement of the sort that we're having would be much easier to resolve with a bullet if it weren't for the looming threat of government intervention after the act. >You seem to be unable to analyze the results of policies. Like Dodd-Frank, right? Tell me more about your foresight. >Your solution is to ignore people's genuine, well-founded concerns and lobby for more govt control. Like coal jobs, right? If their concerns are as well founded as your knowledge of human history, then there's a significant amount that can be ignored there. What you're actually saying, and which I won't validate beyond identifying it, is that I don't care about your feelings. You're right. I don't care about your feelings. I care about your lives, but not about your feelings. I care about the meth epidemic running it's way through your part of our country, but not your feelings. I care about those of you going away to the military and getting unjustly treated when you return, but I don't care about your feelings. I care about those of you that are poor, but I don't care about your feelings. You care about your feelings but don't give a fuck about much else. >Your proscription is precisely what we don't want. And children don't want to eat vegetables. So? >And I'm glad Trump is in charge and ideas like yours will get nowhere near those at the highest levels of govt. Yes, you're glad Bannon has the ear of the president and not scientists. Jesus, you're thick.

  • Jaydon Schmitt

    The pantheon for my setting is far from original, mostly made up of deities pulled pulled or inspired from several different sources and just kind of thrown together. I've never really been a fan of the organized pantheon; I prefer my deities to be more like Forgotten Realms' pantheon, made up of several deities without any sort of official organization (like you'd find in, say, the Greek pantheon). I always like to give the impression that the "pantheon" is not finite. New gods are created, old gods die. There are small gods, with only a few hundred or even dozen worshipers. If the PCs travel to a far-off land, they should not expect the same deities to be worshiped there. The pantheon is split chiefly into two sorts of deities: ancient deities, and ascended mortals. The ancient deities tend towards the Lovecraftian, being incomprehensible entities from beyond the scale of mortals; while ascended mortals are just very powerful (usually-) humanoid NPCs with divine powers. --- There are the creator deities: **Immotian**, LN deity of fire and purity. Holy symbol is ball of fire, or a red gem. Brought fire to the world. Infamously strict and intolerant; hates anything considered unnatural or monstrous. Patron deity of the main human empire. Anthropomorphized portrayals are considered heretical, and is always shown as a ball of radiant fire. Is always given a gender, though it changes depending on the worshiper/sect. **Kysul**, LG deity of water and fate. Holy symbol is an unblinking eye surrounded by a corona of tentacles. Brought water to the world. The only deity known to be of the world that came before this one, while the rest of the progenitor deities were created along with the world. Worshiped only by rare cultists who know of its existence. Dwells deep within the ocean, and protects the world from incursions from otherworldly beings, good and evil alike. Is not usually directly portrayed by worshipers, but is in actuality a colossal cephalopod covered in thousands of eyes. Is not usually given a gender, but when it is, Kysul is considered female. **Moradin**. We've seen em' a million times before, no need to go into detail here. Creator of the Dwarves, bringer of Earth to the world. **Io**, N god of dragons. Creator of dragons, bringer of air to the world. In mythic times, split to become **Bahamut**, LG god of good dragons, and **Tiamat**, LE goddess of evil dragons. **Xel**, LE deity of agriculture and blood. Holy symbol is crossed sickles over two sheafs of wheat. Brought life and death to the world. Worshiped by most of the common people as a pagan-esque god of good harvests, and by evil druids and cultists. Secretly, the priests kidnap people and sacrifice them to their evil god at black altars in ancient valleys; this practice has dwindled with time, but is currently undergoing a resurgence. Usually portrayed as a horned man, but is in fact a lovecraftian monstrosity of tentacles and eyes that, in its few dealings with humans, is only seen as a vague shadow hiding behind the clouds, reaching down with massive tendrils. Is not always given a gender, but when it is (especially by laypeople), Xel is considered male. **Correlon**. Again, a million times before. Creator of the Elves and bringer of arcane magic to the world, yadda yadda yadda. **Tharizdun**, CE deity of entropy and destruction. Holy symbol is a jagged spiral. Brought chaos into the world. Worshiped only by rare cultists that know of its existence. Imprisoned since mythical times. Is never portrayed (as his true form is lost to the ages), but is a roiling cloud of black fog. Is usually considered male. --- Then there's a host of lesser deities, ascended mortals or similar such characters: **Mara**, LG goddess of death and love. Her holy symbol is the white silhouette of hooded woman. The current goddess of death, having wrested control of the domain from Xel ages ago. **Ioun**, LN goddess of knowledge and spells. Her holy symbol is a stylized eye with a green gem as the pupil. Worshiped by wizards and sages. Rose to godhood in ancient times after succeeding at her apotheosis (think Karsus or Vecna). **Mielikki**, CG goddess of nature. Holy symbol is a a unicorn head in profile. Worshiped by rangers and good druids. Rose to godhood centuries ago, but still within memory of the oldest Elves. **Arcoiris**, CG god of music and happiness. Holy symbol is a cookie. Worshiped by those who work with children. Rose to godhood within living memory of most old humans; not expected to last long. And a dozen others that aren't worth mentioning. Kurtulmak, god of the Kobolds; Nurgle, god of poison and disease; Erathis, goddess of invention and craft; Vecna, Maglubiyet, Gruumsh, and a host of other evil gods ripped from DnD books.

  • Krystel DuBuque

    No, mainly I just think that the earth's resources are limited, and that our capacity to provide endlessly for beings capable of *seemingly* infinite reproduction is thusly limited. If we split all of the resources up exactly evenly across all seven billion people on this planet, or even all 300 million people in this country, no one would have enough to do anything meaningful with them and the economic consequences are unknown, and fraught with risk. For example - if we seized the empty, foreclosed-upon homes from the banks and gave every poor, homeless person a home demand for homes would plummet. People and financial institutions would not invest in new homes out of fear that the government would seize them, and construction companies would shrink or fold due to the risk of carrying potentially-seizable assets on a balance sheet. The government would be forced to build housing, and they've done *such* a good, cost-effective job of doing that - even *with* the special advantages they have over any private business. What would be the cost of paying for electricity, gas, and running water to people who aren't paying into the system? Higher rates on everyone else? You've already pushed tons of construction workers out of a job, now everyone else has to pay higher bills, too? Homelessness probably wouldn't be solved, either, and over time it certainly wouldn't be. People will cycle up the economic adder more often than they cycle down it, but with renewed government obstacles to them pursuing their self-interest, survival, and prosperity I suspect it would bias the paradigm towards *more* people cycling down it *than the status quo*. And that's *just* housing. There's the internet (a prospering industry that has provided billions of dollars in value to the American people who it is employing at higher relative compensation), healthcare, education, food, and many other sectors of the economy for which the liberal answer is "raise taxes and establish a government program that gives it to poor people for free. And *yes*, I *do* reject the notion that every poor person is a victim of circumstance for whom society must part with its own dreams (going to Mars, hiking Everest, designing super-fast cars, making faster processors, etc.) *and prosperity to realize those dreams* on behalf of. I *do* think that, *at some point*, we have a right to turn our backs on someone and say, "Good luck," and let them go where fortune will... or won't. Anyone who's had a friend crashing on their couch for a good eight months longer than originally promised, or who's had to deal with a drug addict in their circle of friends or loved ones has had to cross this Rubicon, *and sometimes it's the right fucking thing to do*. Sometimes a dose of the coldness and aloneness of nature wakes people up mighty quickly, and sadly, sometimes it doesn't. But we do not have infinite resources on this world. We don't have infinite resources on this world, AND we're somewhat inherently selfish beings. We are also somewhat inherently charitable beings, but there can be no charity where we are dead - either physically *and/or* mentally *and/or* spiritually. It is hard enough to provide for our elders, for our children, for those suffering clear mental and physical challenges that prevent them from helping themselves, and even those able-bodied people who are down on their luck. With each passing day, the amount of resources available for our exploitation towards those very ends, declines - so *IF* we are to help more and more of the sick, the elderly, the poor, the disabled, the down-on-their-luck (and there will be more and more, at least for awhile), we must employ a system that does more with less. I do not believe that that system is the monopolist, violently-enforced bureaucracy you demand we all submit to. Ignoring the fact that competition and property rights has *demonstrated* a proficiency at raising standards of living on a massive humanitarian scale, the moral imperative of "caring for our fellow human beings" is threatened not only by the suffering faced by others, but also by the inherently violent core of state power. That's why I'm on the right, and not on the left. I believe you mean well. I simply do not believe we can afford the things I hear the left demand for. I don't think our economists in academia have cracked economics, and that writing laws micromanaging economic exchange will compel utopia to flow forth, and place want in the history books. I think it's quite a bit harder than that, and frankly, given the record of capitalism and free enterprise, I'm far from convinced that their role in the play is over.

  • Audie Gorczany

    I was reading the GONE series. I like dark books, but there has to be a point to it. When a writer just makes things worse and worse purely for the sake of shock value and nothing else, I lose interest. This was the most blatant case I'd ever seen. The basic plot of the books is that a small town was encased in a dome with no access to the outside world and everybody there over 14 vanishes from existence. Also, a minority of the kids developed superpowers. These kids have to figure out how to survive in an adult-less world that is inherently hostile to them, figure out how to stop themselves from disappearing after they turn fifteen and reconnect their town back to the world while there's a mysterious deity-like creature in a cave trying to fuck their shit up. Now, let me give you a run-down of some of the 'dark' things that happen book by book and you'll see why I found it a little excessive. Book 1: Actually a pretty great book. I enjoyed it. Basically the worst thing that happens is that the main villain has people with powers who aren't loyal to him locked up with their hands encased in cement blocks so they can't use their powers. The main character breaks them out and the author doesn't shy away from telling you some of them have hands that are just rotting, useless, gross sacks of skin from being encased for so long... buuuut the main character happens to have a healer with him at the time (whom the author REEATEDLY finds ways to keep away until he needs her throughout the next few books) so she fixes that. The main villain loses, his even Worse Dragon loses an arm and is presumed dead, the minor villains don't control the town, main character becomes mayor, everyones happy. Oh but also, it is totally mentioned that babies died in cribs when all the adults disappeared and they have to clean up baby corpses while raiding houses for food. Book 2: It's a few months later. They're running out of stored food. Main character tries to get people farming but a) they don't wanna and b) he finally loads some people on a bus, takes them to a field, turns out it's infested with worms that work like pirhannas do in movies. They find this out because a kid goes out there and has all the flesh picked off his bones. So the food they're trying to harvest is rotting. Also, there's discontent growing between superpowered and non-superpowered kids. Also, the deity thing in the cave does some stuff, the last main villains dragon isn't dead and is serving it now, he has a whip-tentacle arm. Its dark, but still totally within the realm of acceptable. Book 3: The deity thing starts spreading its influence. a 'religion' of people who don't want to stop themselves from disappearing at 15 because they think they'll pop back in the real world springs up. Then it starts getting turned into dying in this world and disappearing are the same thing. The town babysitter (watches all the children who're under five who didn't die in their houses when all the adults poofed) ends up in this cult. At the end of the book, she takes all her kids, gets them all to hold hands, and jumps off a cliff with them. Most of the kids survive because of a super speed character who defies all physics saving them, but not all. The babysitter dies. The always sweet and sympathetic babysitter trying to murder a bunch of children is NOT what made me stop reading. Book 4: Ah, book four. Let me count the amount of bullshit the writer tried to cram into you. * The attempted murder of a severely autistic child * Fucking cannibalism * A KKK allegory of kids against people with powers * a food situation so dire that search parties have to be sent into the woods around the town to find any food and water they can. (this occurs at a different location than the cannibalism) * above KKK allegory tries to burn down the town. The last two? Yeah those occur simultaneously. The party out for food finds a crashed delivery truck far away from town full of nutella while the town is being burned down. Search party contains both the main character (strongest power-user in the city) and the super speed girl (main way for them to send messages; phones don't work). Every few pages they flip between super speed girl and main character rejoicing over nutella and the carnage back in the city with people commenting on how if only they could find super speed girl (who was taken on the expedition at the last minute), she could run a message to main character to come back and fix this and everything would be better, just really rubbing your nose in the fact that she's not there to find and there's no way to save the people in town. It was so blatant and disgusting a never finished the book. However, on book 5 the author mentioned there was a scene in it so dark that 'my editor asked me to take it out (I didn't, you know me better than that!)' (paraphrased direct quote). There are six books. I don't think I missed anything.

  • Edd Donnelly

    I don't work for a school (obviously, as my reddit username implies), but it's very similar here. I'm a one man show, and I do everything. EVERYTHING. Patron needs help connecting to wifi, resizing a picture, opening their email? Me. Printer toner needs changed? Also me. And god forbid we get the dreaded "your ____ toner cartridge only has 5% ink left, order more soon" message on the public printer. I will be hearing about it for weeks from staff. Yes, I f&*(ing know. It's really easy to replace. You've all been trained. It gives you instructions, I've sent out half a dozen emails letting everyone know that the toner is on the shelf in certain workroom. Just leave the empty toner and box on my desk and I'll take care of it. But then, there's the fun stuff, like I got to completely redo our website. New self hosted Linux server, new theme, the works. Learned a ton. I virtualized our DCs, added 2012 DCs, and decommissioned the old ones. Again, learned a ton. I rolled out a Windows 7 to 10 upgrade by imaging a single source computer and loading that image through multicast over the network. Worked great, was so cool to see. It can just be a little frustrating when I have to deal with tier 1 helpdesk stuff. Hell, some of the things that I have to tell people is below tier 1. It's tier 0. Some of these people should not be using computers without taking one of our library computer classes first (which I also teach). I make just a little bit more than you do, but that's only because I've been here for over 5 years now. 1-2% yearly raises with zero chance of a merit based raise are kind of demotivating. The benefits and retirement plan are both amazing though. The area I live in is dirt cheap though. I live very well on that small amount. The other thing is.. I have a lot of freedom. My boss (our library director) has only ever rarely said no to a suggestion, and that's almost always been a budget thing. My co-workers really are great people, and they all really do believe in what we're doing for our community as a public library. We get lots of paid holidays, and even the occasional snow day. If I want to take a day or a week of vacation, assuming I have enough built up, all I have to do is ask. I can literally ask the day before I want to take off and my boss will just say "sure, as long as you don't have anything pressing to do". It's entirely up to me... as long as I can afford to be away from the office. I've had a week off where I didn't hear a single peep from work. Not once! That's pretty astounding for one man show. If I stay with the public library system here, I can retire at 57 with full benefits, and then go on to do IT contract work on the side. If I want extra money, I'll be able to work. If not, then I won't. I know there is more money to be made in the private sector with big corporations, but I'm so used to not having anyone to answer to but myself and the library director. It's not that I'm a bad sysadmin or anything, but at this point I'm kind of my own boss. If I want to work remotely during the evening or on a Sunday when we're closed, I just let my boss know and I do it. Then again, I feel like I've done a lot to earn trust where I am. Like, when a water pipe burst and saturated the ceiling, including over our server room, and water soaked the entire server rack and all the equipment (it was a horrible, horrible mess - server room was almost a total loss).. once it had been dried out and our power was turned back on, I worked for over 30 hours straight setting up an entirely new server rack full of switches, two new VMWare hosts, restored baremetal backups of our DCs, web server, set up a new NAS, started restoring our files to it, etc. I didn't have to stay that long. My boss told me to go home. I said no, I'll go home when it's all up and running and we can offer 100% of our library services when we re-opened. And we did. I think going the extra mile when stuff like that happens really shows your mettle. Anyway, enough blabbering. A library is not a school, but we're like close cousins. We have a lot of the same needs and face a lot of the same problems. All those kids though.. all the time.. that would be rough. It's bad enough when we have a big children's program at the library. Doing that every day? I dunno heh. Be glad that you're on a team. I so badly needed a mentor those first few years as the one man show at this library. Instead, I had to learn from Spiceworks, Reddit, books, and a ridiculous amount of self teaching. I got tossed into a JOAT one man show job that required Windows Server administration, linux, wordpress, and a lot deeper networking knowledge than I had at the time. The first year was hell, but now it's getting to be too easy and I'm getting bored. One last note: is there no way to re-negotiate your terms of employment so you get PTO / benefits? Working for a school or public library.. that's the main draw. Yeah your salary sucks, but your retirement and healthcare are so solid.

  • Sheldon Volkman

    The last try had just been scored. The Queen let out a tear, then ordered Prince Phillip to shoot her, before the "colonial dogs and dregs got to her." Twickenham was on fire. Rioting was breaking out. The Wallabies had just finished conquering the known world. Lets rewind a few years. The Trans Pacific Partnership, a massive legalese document meant to do certain things, then cancerously tumoured into something else. Certain things about "investor state disputes" and various intellectual property agreements. This was the beginning of the end. Many treaties like this spanned every country on the world map. It started slowly. Countries were on guard against technology and pharmaceutical firms. Against Basketball and Soccer companies. But nobody expected the Australians to use Rugby. There was a series of landmark court cases which revealed a number of damning truths: 1. That no country could legally refuse to play Rugby against Australia. 2. That the intellectual property penalties were so high that infringing them would immediately bankrupt any country. 3. That a "competitive match for the assets of an organisation" counted as a legally binding wager. When Australia played Rugby against your national side, you were wagering your entire sporting IP. When you lost, it was now owned by Australia. However, historical infringements totalled into the quadrillions of dollars and now Australia owned your country. It started with Japan. The US fell early. Asia Pacific went under although Fiji, Tonga and Samoa were placed under blockade until their players succumbed to famine. Africa was east until a final, 50 minutes of overtime, sudden death with four actual deaths games in Pretoria ended with a single drop kick. The Americas fell, unable to scrounge anyone better than Argentina. Asia just surrendered. Europe was the last bastion. A hard fought campaign was launched from Easter Europe, with Russia trusting to a Siberian winter to slow the Wallabies down. No dice. Sweeping down over Germany, the Australians were stumped by the neutral Swiss, who in a cunning plan had blown up all their sports grounds, the scheeming french who were unable to field an injury free team for five years (STDs were ruled as legal reasons not to play), and the Italians, who couldn't commit to a single time. But eventually two of them fell and the Swiss were ignored. Spain was on a Siesta, and the Ireland got shamrock and rolled. Wales put up a stunning defence, but the Dragon was slain. Scotland came with kilts and claymores, but despite slaughtering 50 Wallabies under a creative interpretation of the rules, still lost the game. The Last Bastion: England. Twickenham, the Home of Rugby. The Lions vs the Wallabies. Queen Elizabeth the Seconds mechasuit was there, and she played her heart out, literally, before being subbed to have the remaining organic components operated on. The English and the Aussies had a blistering game. High scoring, action packed and dramatically close. With 30 seconds to go, the Aussies got a final Try, giving them a 2 point lead at 80 minutes. Australia now controlled the world. And so it lasted for decades. Australia schools flourished under the one world Rugby government. Sciences and Arts grew. Health increased massively, and a race of supermen and women appeared. Everything was going fine. Nobody was disappearing at the hands of the secret police. There was no talk of a "blacked out nation". Everything was good. By law. Let us move forward in history. 2099. Australia has controlled the world for nearly 70 years. The conquest is taught in schools. Heavily sanitised for the children of course. Bazza Bazzason was sitting in class, looking through some old books. Atlases from before the Uniting. Curious at the comparison, he took it to his teacher. "Miss, what's this country here?" The teacher looked over, then, in shock, as she was secretly an agent for the ministry of truth, grabbed a Sharpie and scrubbed over the offending atlas with black ink. "Bazza, that's not a country that exists. It was an error. We know now that it's just water there." The lie to a child was easy. The lie to herself was harder. Black Sharpie. A Blacked Out Country. Black Bagging for talking about it. Black Sites. And yet, these were not the fearful things. The country really did exist. The single country that the Wallabies had been unable the conquer. Maybe it was prophetic that their warriors were called 'the Originals', 'the Invincibles'. They had a terrifying stance, and fearful intimidation rituals. From the blacked out country they came: The All Blacks.

  • Marlen Emmerich

    Character A: Aiken, the Oaken, is a member of the Council of the Citadel, and was formerly a wealthy sailor. Aiken is a devoted follower of the Unified Way and Aeternitas, so he enforces dedication to Aeternitas throughout the Citadel. Aiken firmly believes in the supremacy of humanity. Most of his hatred is for Lamia, Goblins, and Kleinfels. As a member of the Council, Aiken is considered to be one of the most powerful and experienced warrior-mages in the continent. He is a master of using Earth and Water magic in battle. While he has not left the Citadel in many, many years, he still has a powerful reputation. Unfortunately, other than his feats in battle and his hatred of non-human sapient creatures, little is known about him. When one of the Citadel students brought a Lamia slave into the Citadel's territory, Aiken responded by only eating Lamia meat for the next week. Aiken loves humans, though, especially children (no, not like that). Whenever he sees a small child, they remind him of his children, who died long ago, and their age of innocence. Whenever he is around anyone that he considers young (due to his age, this includes most people around him), he goes out of his way to make them laugh, from making jokes to making funny faces. When he is not doing something serious for work, he can come off as a buffoon. Character B: (I really wanted to make a new character for this, but I could only think of one that would be most appropriate for it after I finished with Aiken) Lilith Marlowe: Lilith arrived at the Citadel with Luka, who claimed to have met her on his way there. She is gifted in the use of Poison magic, and is capable of using Umbra magic. While she fulfills the duties of a guard, she is not technically employed by the Citadel; instead, she is officially Luka’s slave. Her kind, Lamia, are not allowed to be in Citadel territory under normal circumstances. However, the council allowed her because of a special dispensation, under the belief that her free will had been taken because of a necklace she wore which ensnared her body from acting against the orders of Luka. However, the necklace is simply a bloodstone on a piece of string; the lie was made up by Lilith on the spot in order to answer the question that the Council had asked Luka: “How do you keep it from killing you and those around you?” Her answer was that “My scales were originally green, but he used this stone to take control of me, and my scales are the same black and red as this stone until he releases me.” Normally, even under special circumstances, a slave Lamia would have been forbidden to have been brought to the Citadel, but, the combination of Luka’s family’s immunity to Umbra magic and a well-placed bribe by Levi was enough to convince the Citadel to allow it. Prior to coming to the Citadel, Lilith had envisioned the place as a paradise that humans were so lucky to be able to attend, as she dreamed of libraries upon libraries of knowledge. But, she was not an idiot, so she knew that she could not possibly go there without having a giant target on her back. So, instead, she maintained her own small collections of books in her burrow; as she was born with black and red scales, it was expected in Lamia culture that Lilith would be strange, so it was tolerated by her people. You could say that Lilith was obsessed with human culture. She was usually easily excitable when she was young, and the only thing she loved near as much as reading books written by humans was seeing beautiful things in nature and drawing them. As she is officially only there as a slave of Luka, Lilith is aware that she must stay near Luka and that she had to be much quieter from day one in the Citadel onwards; because of this, she has had to restrain her own enthusiasm and refrain from joining in the conversations she hears among the students of the Citadel, no matter how badly she wishes she could discuss her favorite subjects. But, she reminds herself that she must endure it, as she at least has access to all of this knowledge, even if she cannot discuss it with the mentors or students. As Lamia tend to live longer than humans and age slower than humans, Lilith looks like she is about twenty, despite being older than that. If not for the whole “lower half of a snake” problem, Lilith could be considered to be quite attractive. Lilith has a high opinion of the students around her, and is envious of their access to learning tools. The most access she has is that she can listen to lectures that she convinces Luka to attend and she can read the books that he borrows from the Citadel libraries. As she is always with Luka, she has spent a lot of time with Klaas Buskirk, as well. Shortly after Lilith's arrival at the Citadel, Aiken began a week of only eating Lamia meat. And she was well aware of it.

  • Myrtle Friesen

    It's the 5th of summer. Donovan gets up early to celebrate his birthday. He rushes downstairs and eats pancakes with mum and dad. They plan about going to the pokemon daycare and adopting a spare pokemon for Donovan. At the daycare, he picks out a (lvl 8) geodude. It's a female. The carers tell him that they call the geodude 'Argentite.' (His parents pay the manager 200 dollars to adopt Argentite.) Donovan's party includes some pokemon battling, separated by rests. (Argentite knows tackle and rock polish. Also, the geodude's ability is sturdy, in this case.) After the party with his friends, Donovan goes to look at his unopened letters, underneath all of his opened birthday cards. There is a strange letter amongst them. He breaks the wax seal and reads the invitation to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. The next day, his dad has already gone to work and Donovan goes to the edge of town to find wild pokemon. He wants a chance to use some of the poke-balls that he received. During his adventure around the edges of forest, he catches a male pidgey lvl 4 and a male eevee lvl 5. He is content with a bird pokemon, since they are so useful, and he hopes that his pokemon will work together well and become friends. A pokemon professor comes to his house to visit him. "I'm Professor Elderberry. It's nice to meet you." "I'm Alexandria. Are you here to see Donovan?" "Why, yes! If he's not around, then I suppose we should wait for him. -Though we could go out and look," suggests the professor. "I have some exciting news for him, though I also came to explain it to his family." Luckily, it is only a few minutes until Donovan returns. He is introduced to the professor and then they bring down his letter to Hogwarts. "You are a wizard, Donovan. Do you know how some people become fighters, or how some people become psychics?" Donovan and his mother generally nod and grunt/mumble that they understand so far. (As a species, Humans do not have particularly high offensive capabilities or speed, but we have long-distance and large-injury endurance. When people become fighting types, they can be very effective at hurting normal people, but they do not usually become evil because they would be vulnerable to the ghosts of their victims. Humans are related to the human-like ((egg group)) pokemon species which are usually fighting or psychic type.) "Well," continues the professor, "you were born a fairy type person." "-Wow! Really?!" wonders mother Alexandria. "There are lots of people like you at Hogwarts. You have powers, especially if you use a held item as a magical focus. The school at Hogwarts will teach you how to use your powers." "Are you a wizard?" asks Donovan. Professor Elderberry says "No; I'm just a professor." "I'll come back tomorrow to take you to a hidden road in London where we can get you school supplies." Donovan and Professor Elderberry head off on their journey to London City. Don introduces his pokemon to the professor and meets the professor's (lvl 38 M) charizard. "I'm very proud of learning how to ride Charizard. If Pidgey were big enough to carry you, I could fly us over to London City." On the long road to the city, Donovan finds a water stone. The prof. explains that he could use it to evolve his eevee, or he might be able to perform some magic with it. He adds that it might be foolish or dangerous to try using magic before learning about it. Donovan put the water stone into his backpack. After camping twice and traveling for two and a half days, they reach London City. Donovan has trained his pokemon slightly. He had gotten some opportunities to catch bug pokemon but he passed them up. They find Diagon Alley. In the wand store: Donovan was given ash wand to hold. ... Oh no! The wand isn't a good match! Donovan was given elm wand to hold. ... Success! This wand chose Donovan. It felt good, like when you successfully catch a pokemon. (Donovan purchased his wand; an elm wand with a zapdos feather core.) Donovan also purchases his books, robes, cauldron. Professor Elderberry confirms that Hogwarts School has free tuition, (paid by the Ministry of Magic,) though it isn't considered to have terrific education in non-magical subjects. Professor Elderberry shows him where the train platform is and helps him find a place to stay until the end of summer break. The professor goes back on his charizard to his office and lab. Donovan learns about pokemon. He also does some work in the city; leading Eevee and Argentite to help dig some trenches for piping. In London City, he meets some other children of various ages who are going to Hogwarts once the school year starts.

  • Selena Emmerich

    > Robert betrayed his king and slew his heir. I already pointed out that Robert had no choice - Aerys ordered Jon Arryn to turn over him and Ned. Their options at that point were to meekly show up to their executions or rebel. I suppose option 3 would have been going into exile, but then they'd be leaving Jon Arryn there to face the consequences of defiance by himself. I'm not trying to argue that Robert's Rebellion was honorable, merely that the circumstances were very different than what led to Renly crowning himself. > The heir's children were slaughtered. The king’s other children were forced to flee the continent, their rights voided. Was that honorable? Renly or no, do you imagine that Brienne would consider Robert's claim entirely "rightful" after what went down? By that logic, Aegon wasn't the rightful king either. As Jorah pointed out to Dany, he had no claim over the Seven Kingdoms. He took them because he could. After a conquest though, it's generally in everyone's interest to establish some sort of peaceful transfer of power (in the case of a monarchy, that's the line of succession). The alternative is war every time the ruler dies, which is really only one step above complete anarchy. >Though judging by her wording the dubiousness of Robert’s claim had been a long held belief. And she was hardly the only person to believe such a thing. I read that as her repeating the things she heard from Renly. At this point in the story, she's an incredibly naive 17-18 year old girl following her dream guy and living out a song. She has no concept of what war is really like (though she certainly learns over the next couple of books) and she flat out says in AFFC that all she wanted to do was to protect and serve Renly. The theoretical underpinnings behind whether or not Robert's claim was valid had very little to do with it -- hell, she's happy enough to defend Robert when she argues with Jaime about why it was wrong for him to kill the Mad King: >"Robert did all he did for love." Water ran down Brienne's legs and pooled beneath her feet. >"Robert did all he did for pride, a cunt, and a pretty face." He made a fist . . . or would have, if he'd had a hand. Pain lanced up his arm, cruel as laughter. >"He rode to save the realm," she insisted. (ASOS, Jaime V) That doesn't seem awfully consistent with what she tells Catelyn about how he was never a legitimate king. >Except Renly and Brienne were committing the same act that brought about Robert’s claim in the first place. At the time they believed that Joffrey was Robert’s rightful heir, and they believed it was justified and even preferable to rebel. Again, why? There are two questions here: 1) Is Joffrey a legitimate king, and 2) If not, who is? If Renly thinks Joffrey is the Mad King come again, why not back his brother Stannis, who might be unlikable but no one would ever accuse of being unjust or mad. Renly crowned *himself* because of ambition. It wasn't that there was no one else or that he was attacked first and was forced to step up or die (like Robert and Ned). > I don’t view the two situations as particularly analogous either. The Stark’s never engaged in breaking guest right. They never established the precedent for engaging in such behavior. While Robert and Stannis did set a precedent for establishing right by conquest. That's not the analogy I was talking about -- it was to do with why people follow certain social conventions even though they don't technically have to. The reason people generally respect guest right is that the alternative is a complete breakdown of a functioning feudal society. Likewise, the line of succession prevents there from being a war every few years. It's typically mutually beneficial for everyone to agree to respect these norms, because the alternative is a whole bunch of people dying. Side note, Robert did not set a precedent for establishing right by conquest. Aegon was a conqueror too, and there were plenty of other conquests that happened earlier. However, the whole point of such a conquest is to set up a new dynasty, not to create a society perpetually at war. And again, Robert and Ned didn't start the rebellion in a premeditated way, it was a reaction to the Mad King demanding their heads. >You can claim that he was merely bluffing, but he did seem rather shocked when Stannis attacked Storm’s End. He was only shocked because he didn't think Stannis would be that bold. The scene where he treats with Stannis doesn't read like shock to me at all. It reads like Renly going through the motions of asking Stannis to be realistic and kind of enjoying the fact that he has the upper hand (he thinks) and gets a chance to stick it to the brother he never really liked.

  • Bradley Purdy

    >>The Thousand Years 20 And I saw an angel coming down out of heaven, having the key to the Abyss and holding in his hand a great chain. 2 He seized the dragon, that ancient serpent, who is the devil, or Satan, and bound him for a thousand years. 3 He threw him into the Abyss, and locked and sealed it over him, to keep him from deceiving the nations anymore until the thousand years were ended. After that, he must be set free for a short time.>> Here we have the defeat of Satan and his casting into the lake of fire. >>4 I saw thrones on which were seated those who had been given authority to judge. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony about Jesus and because of the word of God. They[a] had not worshiped the beast or its image and had not received its mark on their foreheads or their hands. They came to life and reigned with Christ a thousand years. 5 (The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were ended.) This is the first resurrection. 6 Blessed and holy are those who share in the first resurrection. The second death has no power over them, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with him for a thousand years.>> Here we have the Resurrection and reward of the martyrs who refused the mark and fought back against te anti-Christ. >>The Judgment of Satan 7 When the thousand years are over, Satan will be released from his prison 8 and will go out to deceive the nations in the four corners of the earth—Gog and Magog—and to gather them for battle. In number they are like the sand on the seashore. 9 They marched across the breadth of the earth and surrounded the camp of God’s people, the city he loves. But fire came down from heaven and devoured them. 10 And the devil, who deceived them, was thrown into the lake of burning sulfur, where the beast and the false prophet had been thrown. They will be tormented day and night for ever and ever.>> Here we have the final test of Humanity when Satan is released to test us once more. >>The Judgment of the Dead 11 Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. The earth and the heavens fled from his presence, and there was no place for them. 12 And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the book of life. The dead were judged according to what they had done as recorded in the books. 13 The sea gave up the dead that were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead that were in them, and each person was judged according to what they had done. 14 Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. The lake of fire is the second death. 15 Anyone whose name was not found written in the book of life was thrown into the lake of fire.>> >>A New Heaven and a New Earth 21 Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,”[a] for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. 2 I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. 3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. 4 ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’[b] or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”>> This is the promise of a New and un-fallen earth where sin no longer exists. 5 He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” >>6 He said to me: “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the thirsty I will give water without cost from the spring of the water of life. 7 Those who are victorious will inherit all this, and I will be their God and they will be my children. 8 But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars—they will be consigned to the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.”>> Our Eternity with Christ begins. What that will bring, we shall see.

  • Sydney Gutmann

    The coach careened around tight cliff corners. It was night time by a foreign coast. The driver sat weary eyed, hunched over the wheel. The teachers sat splayed in all angles, drooling and asleep. The school children pretended to sleep, but really whispered gossip, talked about crushes and played games. The coach was two tiered, teachers downstairs, and kids upstairs. I was sitting at the very front, looking out through the large Perspex window. It was so dark. We were travelling along a thin narrow path, briefly lit by pale fluorescent lamps every few hundred meters. Above, the stars shone, and down to our right little other lights shone. I knew, even though the darkness, they must be the lights of boats and buoys, because they moved in tandem with the invisible dark sea. I wanted to share this knowledge with my cohort at the front. I was part of the group of people at school where this kind of observation would of been given credit, from most of the other people in my year it would of earned me cruel words. Sadly, my friends were not the rebels and they all slept. We were the only kids wearing seatbelts. I stretched my legs up onto the small space at the front, the recess filled with children’s garbage: gum wrappers, crisp packets and foreign sweets. This was my fourteen year olds self's idea of rebellion. Then, everything went wrong. No longer focusing on the road, I heard a loud blaring horn, my eyes shot up to see a great angry flaring array of lights. We had drifted into the other lane of traffic, the driver must have fallen asleep. A giant red tanker was headed directly for us. My entire body tensed up for impact, just as everyone else's attention was being roused. Then, things turned from bad to worse. The sleeping driver must of woken up, and having learnt to drive in another country, his instinct was to veer to the right to avoid the incoming truck. The whole coach swayed, my entire vision was filled with the blaring lights of the incoming truck. Then, a terrible harsh screech and a sudden terrible sensation of weightlessness. Everyone was screaming, I was still startled by the lights, as we careened off the road down the cliff into the sea below. I remember the coach hitting the water with an incredible crunch, there must have been low laying rocks in the water. I remember a large stalagmite of rock puncturing the window. I remember seatbelt-less bodies tumbling down the aisle. I remember a terrible, terrible screaming. I remember the almost peaceful, constant gush of water. When I awoke, I was face down in the sand. It was comfortable, and for just a moment I could have curled up there and slept. Until I remembered. I lifted my head up, I looked and then it was my turn to scream. The school coach, impaled on an underwater formation of rocks. A large rock had gone straight through the front Perspex window, lifting the whole coach just slightly off the sea floor. Then, as the initial shock began to set in I realized. I wasn't making any noise, and not only that - I was under water. I instinctively clamped my jaw shut, and turned away from the scene. I noticed a gash in my leg, and looking briefly back at the coach I remembered. I must have climbed through the gap in the window …before the coach had taken on so much water it had sunk further down … sealing the rest of my companions inside. This realization made me want to vomit, and this realization brought me back to the fact that I suddenly, desperately needed to breath. My instincts won out and I opened my mouth, but instead of the sheer total panic I associated with drowning, came a strangely familiar relief, I could breath. I must have passed out due to shock, because the next thing I knew I was lying face up in the sand, this time on land. Medics stood over me, shining small flash lights into my eyes, an oxygen mask clamped over my mouth. I was rushed on a gurney into a foreign hospital, I couldn't understand what anyone was saying, nor did I care. I have been interviewed, books have been written, I have several Guinness world records, and studios have contacted me about making a movie about my story. I have been called a super-hero. But what is the point of super-powers. So what, I can breathe underwater. It's too late. They all died, every single one of them. I could have saved them, I should have known. I could have carried them to the surface. I keep to myself mostly now. Sometimes I will go out late at night, out to the beach. I look out to the sea, where it is so dark you can't tell the difference between the stars in the sky and the lights of boats and buoys. I remember them.

  • Max Schumm

    All around me there was white. White walls, a white floor and a pure white roof. There was a bright light that seemed to come from nowhere and everywhere all at once, somehow both comforting and dazzling at the same time. In the middle of this strange room stood an old wood table, decayed to the point where it was barely able to support its own weight. I could just make out a single piece of paper lying on the top, covered in sprawling handwriting. I slowly made my way towards the table, disturbed that I didn't know where where I was, yet completely at peace in this strange room. I picked up the piece of paper, a slight involuntary tremor causing it to flutter as I lifted it. The page was covered in dates, ages and quotes. As I slowly scanned the page it eventually dawned on me that I was reading everything I'd ever wanted to say but had never spoken. Underneath the quote someone had noted what would have happened if I'd said the words written. The page seemed to go on for an eternity, with thousands of quotes each vying for my attention. There were only a few which truly mattered, and I don't know how long I spent reading them over and over again. The first words which I could not ignore almost broke me. "Leave her alone." I was 13 and in middle school. *They listen, but turn around and start attacking you until a teacher can break up the fight. You come out with a black eye and a broken nose, but they never pick on her again, saving her from years of torment. Instead of turning to drugs she turns to books, starts a family and lives a happy life. Her children later bring hope to millions and change the face of humanity forever.* "Do you want to go on a date sometime?" 19, in College. *They say yes. They are everything you expected and you both complement each other in every way. You get married, which marks the happiest day of your life, but after fifteen years they take their own life and there is nothing you can do to stop it. The fifteen years of marriage were the best of your life, but the aftermath leaves you a shell of your former self* "I'll agree to it for nothing less than ten million dollars." 31, and just appointed CEO *You close the deal, leading to the cutting off of vital water supply for three million people. Over the following months you learn that fewer than a hundred managed to survive. You feel no guilt.* "Alright. I'll do it. But not for the fame or money, but for you." 35, Political Office *You're elected. The largest majority in decades. The power does not corrupt you and you govern with integrity above all else. You end poverty all around the globe and begin a new age of humanity. You never forget the person you ran for, and their memory stays with you every second of your life.* When I reached the end of the page there was one last quote seemingly out of place, almost as though someone had tried to tear it off but decided at the last moment against it. At this point I was torn between anger, relief and regret, so I almost didn't read those very important words. "Give me another chance." There was no date listed next to it, only two words: "Right Now." *Ask and you shall receive. You go back to that day, age thirteen in the schoolyard. You can do good, you can do evil. You will remember nothing except for fragments of this room to guide you on the right path.* I read the quote countless times, unsure if speaking those words would even do anything. I didn't know if I wanted to try again - what if I accepted the deal that killed so many? what if I didn't help that girl in middle school? would I give the rest of my life for fifteen years of joy? I didn't have the answers to these questions. Everything was a complicated mess, and the sheet of paper in front of me had no answers. By now I could see a door at the other end of the room, behind which lay only darkness. Was I happy with my otherwise uneventful life? Some of the quotes on the paper barely scratched at the surface of the difference I could make, or the terror I could cause. So now I had a choice. I could choose peace or I could chose turmoil. I could end it all or start all over again. I could not stay here, where chaos and calm could coexist, and I had to decide whether the risk was worth it. I slowly made my way towards the door, and opened my mouth to speak.

  • Sigrid Parisian

    hell.... Let me just voice two concerns. 1. Generation Goto ( or to make it personal, the brathering brats). The idea sounds good, but there is some quality control needed to check what is actually been taught. I remember it, in a personal anecdote, by the word Brathering. We had the missfortune of having someone in school who taught english so badly and with such a strong german accent, that strangely enough, all the children in her english course were not able to speak a proper TH ( german national here). When they investigated, we found out that Oh, my , apparently that person was a rather nice person, but had a speech condition that prevented her from passing on proper english annunciation and pronounciation to 10 year olds. Now, you may smile, and beatifically say, oh, well, these strange germans, but ask anyone who is a bit older and who worked in the heyday of coding what it means when you have a GOTO programmer, and what they would personbally like to do with the people who thought GOTO was a valid statement in a language that should be taught in schools. But prepaere for some swearing. The lesson is, what has been learned so early should be quality tested to the extreme, and updated regularely, or you do more harm then good. From personal experience, it takes me less long to teach a good natured person who has never coded on a computer to write nice and proper code, then to eliminate a persons BASIC habits. 2. How to spot fake news. I allways find it extremely interresting how children are taught. new methods, new exercises.... But I wonder. When a kid from downstairs does his math homework out loud, I can't help but think along, and sometimes cringe. The best guarantee of fairness would be if the classes about fake news get corrected and graded by a foreign teacher. Who is instructed to let the class mercylessly fail and such if the class, instead of pointing to the actual fake news, points to the fake news "station". The most important thing you have to learn is to actually differentiate between "does this fucking make sense or not". It must be allowed to question the experts. Fox news displays that immigrants are raping the white women, based on a report of some expert. Credible? CNN interviews an expert who claims the small trump child is autistic, but has never actually diagnosed the fecker. Credible? Salon.com claims it is ok and in the national interest to show a sex tape of an aging male star, and takes him to court over it, but claims it is horrendous and unethical to show even swimsuit pictures of a female star. Credible? Newspaper endorses political candidate, while claiming to be unbiased. Credible? You can get into extremely hot water very quickly if you do not learn to differentiate between "Teach a kid to check sources, if he is really interrested in it", and "Use fake news to badger away anything that you don't like. " Personally? Two interresting games. 1. A dollar for a fake. Bet 1 dollar, or your countries currency, on if a story is revealed as fake or not fake. 2. Actually fucking parent. The school can do one thing, and one thing alone, and that is, teach your kids facts. It can not teach your kid how to behave, it can not teach your kid how to interpret facts, it can certainly challenge the kid with more difficult things, but it can never give your kid the context it needs. That is typically the job of prents. Pick up your little fecker, switch off the TV, and talk to the little shit, for at least an hour a day. 3. Personally, I like the following thing, that my mother used to great effect. Teach me something new, and you get 5 bucks. Simply, let your child teach you, what it wants to teach you. Listen to your child. Challenge the child. Have the child explain to you. If the child manages to teach you a single fact, and you find no flaw in it, it has well earned its reward. If there are infos missing, get to the computer, open wikipedia, learn the things, then come back to me and you get the reward. It does not matter how meaningless the fact is, or how banal, but the fact a day, that your kid teaches you, will tell you more about your childs education then all the experts and self help books ever.

  • Arturo Windler

    > The main point I would like to get across in reply is: give it time. The issue is if someone is asking you to support an agenda that casts other Americans as something to despise and fear, then if you are morally against it how can you line up in support of it because "in time" maybe it will become a message of unity? I don't expect you to fall in line behind the press. I expect you to hold them to a higher standard. And if you want to reform the press, I expect you to lift up the press that does a good job. Presents stories with heavy research, that provides insight into the problems that face us. Shines a light on corruption. You can be against what's false, but you can also uplift what is true. I do not have the ability to lift up what is good about Trump. But you do. You, as a member of those in power, have the ability to ask them to focus on agendas that we can all agree with. You have the ability to drill down into each subject and decide what the best answer is, and ask for that answer to win. For example, with immigration, we make it very expensive and difficult to hire immigrant agrarian workers, even though no Americans are willing to do the job for 50% above minimum wage. Do you remember the employees of Wells Fargo who always cheated because their bosses had unreasonable expectations of their work? You encourage illegality if you create a system that makes it extremely hard for people to hire and work and succeed legally. But maybe you think the problem is that local workers would take the job if they were paid a fairer wage, maybe the above-minimum-wage is still an exploitive wage (could be true). Then the answer is to require better work and wages for those jobs. At a price point locals would recognize them as reasonable jobs for the wage. Because either the jobs are reasonable for the wage or they aren't. And if they are reasonable for the wage, then we should make it easy for those willing to do the work to do the job (straightforward H-2 visas), and pay taxes to cover the cost of the worker (the education of their children, roads, potable water, workplace injuries, health care). Or we should make sure the job is worth taking (protection from workplace injuries, bathroom breaks, plenty of water, overtime pay, etc. etc.) I've seen zero evidence that immigrants are even correlated with higher crime. When I get into debates about gun control, I'm always shown evidence that deaths from guns is not on the rise. That the fear of gun violence is overblown. That individual sensational cases are blown out of proportion to incite fear to push gun control. If we don't have an increase in gun violence, then where's the fear of out of control immigrant violence coming from? The same type of individual sensational cases used to create a narrative? Against a backdrop of the same type of crime as we've always had? The truth is, the bigger war in immigration has always been about work paying a reasonable wage. When you have an oversupply of labor, you have lower wages. Immigrants want better work conditions and wages as well. They aren't the enemy in that fight. When you have a convoluted hiring system, the winner is people willing to pay those who are desperate enough to hire under the table. The losers are those willing to follow the insanely expensive and hard to follow laws. When you cast the desperate as "them" and "the illegal bad guys," and "those to incarcerate at all cost," and at the same time you don't check the books of the employers, bring the law down hard and heavy on the employers, jail them, bankrupt them, bring holy fire down on them to the same vengeful degree you bring upon the workers... then what you have is employers using that desperation to drive down wages further. Trump's been smart and uses subcontractors that hire illegally. Is that kind of thing going to stop? Because it doesn't look like it. And that's the real nuts and bolts just on the immigration issue. It doesn't matter who is in power, if we don't actually start talking about the real problems and the real ways to solve them. And give our Congressmen a chance to work on the real work, instead of being reactive and defensive at every juncture.

  • Reid Schowalter

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  • Xzavier Kovacek

    Personality Akbar hunting with cheetahs, c. 1602 Akbar plays draughts with living pieces at Fateh pur Sikri, 1575 Akbar's reign was chronicled extensively by his court historian Abul Fazal in the books Akbarnama and Ain-i-akbari. Other contemporary sources of Akbar's reign include the works of Badayuni, Shaikhzada Rashidi and Shaikh Ahmed Sirhindi. Akbar was a warrior, emperor, general, animal trainer (reputedly keeping thousands of hunting cheetahs during his reign and training many himself), and theologian.[160] Believed to be dyslexic, he was read to everyday and had a remarkable memory.[161] Akbar was said to have been a wise emperor and a sound judge of character. His son and heir, Jahangir, wrote effusive praise of Akbar's character in his memoirs, and dozens of anecdotes to illustrate his virtues.[162] According to Jahangir, Akbar was "of the hue of wheat; his eyes and eyebrows were black and his complexion rather dark than fair". Antoni de Montserrat, the Catalan Jesuit who visited his court described him as follows: "One could easily recognize even at first glance that he is King. He has broad shoulders, somewhat bandy legs well-suited for horsemanship, and a light brown complexion. He carries his head bent towards the right shoulder. His forehead is broad and open, his eyes so bright and flashing that they seem like a sea shimmering in the sunlight. His eyelashes are very long. His eyebrows are not strongly marked. His nose is straight and small though not insignificant. His nostrils are widely open as though in derision. Between the left nostril and the upper lip there is a mole. He shaves his beard but wears a moustache. He limps in his left leg though he has never received an injury there."[163] Akbar was not tall but powerfully built and very agile. He was also noted for various acts of courage. One such incident occurred on his way back from Malwa to Agra when Akbar was 19 years of age. Akbar rode alone in advance of his escort and was confronted by a tigress who, along with her cubs, came out from the shrubbery across his path. When the tigress charged the emperor, he was alleged to have dispatched the animal with his sword in a solitary blow. His approaching attendants found the emperor standing quietly by the side of the dead animal.[164] Abul Fazal, and even the hostile critic Badayuni, described him as having a commanding personality. He was notable for his command in battle, and, "like Alexander of Macedon, was always ready to risk his life, regardless of political consequences". He often plunged on his horse into the flooded river during the rainy seasons and safely crossed it. He rarely indulged in cruelty and is said to have been affectionate towards his relatives. He pardoned his brother Hakim, who was a repented rebel. But on rare occasions, he dealt cruelly with offenders, such as his maternal uncle Muazzam and his foster-brother Adham Khan, who was twice defenestrated for drawing Akbar's wrath.[165] He is said to have been extremely moderate in his diet. Ain-e-Akbari mentions that during his travels and also while at home, Akbar drank water from the Ganges river, which he called 'the water of immortality'. Special people were stationed at Sorun and later Haridwar to dispatch water, in sealed jars, to wherever he was stationed.[166][better source needed] According to Jahangir's memoirs, he was fond of fruits and had little liking for meat, which he stopped eating in his later years. Akbar also once visited Vrindavan, the birthplace of Krishna in the year 1570, and gave permission for four temples to be built by the Gaudiya Vaisnavas, which were Madana-mohana, Govindaji, Gopinatha and Jugal Kisore. To defend his stance that speech arose from hearing, he carried out a language deprivation experiment, and had children raised in isolation, not allowed to be spoken to, and pointed out that as they grew older, they remained mute.[167]

  • Mose Prohaska

    Well, yes. I'd put Pynchon, Gaddis, Wallace, DeLillo, etc. on the same level for writing that Jimi is for music. What I meant was if plot is the only thing the book offers, I will not read it. If plot is maybe lacking, but the prose, style, and philosophy is amazing, then I will read it. But all of my favorites seem to blend both of these without issue. I think there are plenty of books that are beautiful and amazing in a technical sense, that still have compelling plots, great characters, and hard-hitting emotional scenes. In fact, I'd say Pynchon has just as many beautifully human and touching passages as any writer who focuses on plot. Consider this passage: “In the kitchen, the water in the kettle shakes, creaks toward boiling, and outside the wind blows. Somewhere, in another street, a roofslate slides and falls. Roger has taken Jessica’s cold hands in to warm against his breast, feeling them, icy, through his sweater and shirt, folded in against him. Yet she stands apart, trembling. He wants to warm all of her, not just comic extremities, wants beyond reasonable hope. His heart shakes like the boiling kettle. It has begun to reveal itself: how easily she might go. For the first time he understands why this is the same as mortality, and why he will cry when she leaves. He is learning to recognize the times when nothing really holds her but his skinny, 20-pushup arms…. If she leaves, then it ceases to matter how the rockets fall. But the coincidence of maps, girls, and rocketfalls has entered him silently, silent as ice, and Quisling molecules have shifted in latticelike ways to freeze him. If he could be with her more… if it happened when they were together – in another time that might have sounded romantic, but in a culture of death, certain situations are just more hep to the jive than others – but they’re apart so much…. If the rockets don’t get her there’s still her lieutenant. Damned Beaver/Jeremy is the War, he is every assertion the fucking War has ever made – that we are meant for work and government, for austerity: and these shall take priority over love, dreams, the spirit, the senses and the other second-class trivia that are found among the idle and mindless hours of the day…. Damn them, they are wrong. They are insane. Jeremy will take her like the Angel itself, in his joyless weasel-worded come-along, and Roger will be forgotten, an amusing maniac, but with no place in the rationalized power-ritual that will be the coming peace. She will take her husband’s orders, she will become a domestic bureaucrat, a junior partner, and remember Roger, if at all, as a mistake thank God she didn’t make…. Oh, he feels a raving fit coming on – how the bloody hell can he survive without her? She is the British warm that protects his stooping shoulders, and the wintering sparrow he holds inside his hands. She is his deepest innocence in spaces of bough and hay before wishes were given a separate name to warn that they might not come true, and his lithe Parisian daughter of joy, beneath the eternal mirror, foreswearing perfumes, capeskin to the armpits, all that it too easy, for his impoverishment and more worthy love. You go from dream to dream inside me. You have passage to my last shabby corner, and there, among the debris, you’ve found life. I’m no longer sure which of all the words, images, dreams or ghosts are “yours” and which are “mine.” It’s past sorting out. We’re both someone new now, someone incredible…. His act of faith. In the street the children are singing: Hark, the herald angels sing: Mrs. Simmon’s pinched our King…” When it comes to some of the greatest writers, you're not losing out on plot - it may, however, be harder to follow. This is something I enjoy.

  • Annie Miller

    292. Retexture for Soup 293. Better mammoth cheese 294. Glass Refracting Wine Bottles 295. Retexture for Bread - Hearthfire 296. Horncandles 297. Ren's HD Shrines by Rengel 298. RUGNAROK 299. PELTAPALOOZA - Pelts of Skyrim Expansion 300. Revamped Alchemy Lab HD 301. RUSTIC CLUTTER COLLECTION 302. RUSTIC OVEN - Hearthfires 303. RUSTIC EAST EMPIRE COMPANY SIGNAGE 304. Realistic HD Blacksmith 305. Realistic HD Ingots 306. Realistic HD Misc 307. Realistic HD Mushrooms 308. Realistic HD PickAxe 309. Realistic HD Woodcutter's Axe 310. Skyrim 2015 Shaders 311. Superior Silverware - HD Textures 312. Alternate Summoning Visuals 313. Rune Magic HD 314. Holy Wards - a retexture 315. Skyrim Effects Project 316. Realistic Smoke and Embers 317. Ultimate HD Fire Effects 318. Realistic Instruments - Flute Lute and Drum HQ 319. Retexture for The Scroll 320. Business Ledger HD Retexture 321. Books Notes Paper HD 2K 322. Embers HD 323. Snazzy HD Furniture and Clutter 324. Snazzy HD Noble Beds 325. Edwarr's Ultra HD Enchanting Workbench 326. Book Covers Skyrim 327. Book Covers Skyrim - Compatibility Patch Collection 328. HD Quill of Gemination 329. HD Model Ship 330. PotionsReplacer 331. PotionReplacer PatchV0 332. White Phial Replacer 333. Azuras Star Retexture 334. Sweet Mother - the Night Mother Improvement 335. SSIRT v1.3 336. Better Gold 337. Cultist HD Retexture - Cultist of the Champion of Mora or Follower of the Disciple of Talos 338. Hanas Shrooms 339. MAPS 340. Recolored Edwarr's Spelltomes 341. Stunning Statues of Skyrim 342. Azura Retexture 343. Real Gold Trophies 344. RUSTIC ELDERSCROLL 345. Northfire's Skidmarks 1K-2K 346. Honey pot 347. Design of the Nords -- MARKARTH 348. Leather Retexture 349. RUSTIC FORSWORN 350. Texture for Safe with Lock 351. LITTLE THINGS 358. Vivid Weathers 359. Vivid Weather Rain Sound Replacer\ 364. Ethereal Auroras 365. Skygazer Moons - Masser and Secunda Ultra HD 4K (2K and 1K) Moon Textures 366. Immersive Horses 367. Horses Revamped 368. Better Beast Races v2 369. Dragonic and Feminine Argonian Textures 370. Coverkhajiits 371. coverkhajiits male version 372. JazzJR CoverKhajiits Bodytexture Ver1 373. JazzJRCoverKhajiitFemaleBodytexture 374. SkySight Skins - Ultra HD 4K and 2K - Male Textures 375. SFW bikinis for Main body 376. Superior Lore-Friendly Hair - HD textures 377. AOF Believable Hair -Female and Male- 378. Straight hair retexture 379. Beast Tints 380. XCE - Warpaint and Dirt 381. Hi Res Female Lips for SKSE 382. PAINTERLY - a High Res Vanilla Warpaint Retexture 383. BodySlide 2 and Outfit Studio 385. RUSTIC CHILDREN A bit of mixing and matching, but presto-bingo, every single texture in vanilla skyrim covered with a much higher quality version. Also some neato grass and weather and water overhauls in there. Add in Dyndolod and a few city overhauls, and Skyrim does not look like the same place. Pictures: http://imgur.com/a/4GRjn (some are made with a different modlist, but mostly the same. WARNING: VERY LARGE ALBUM. DO NOT TRY TO LOAD ON MOBILE OR IF YOU HAVE A DATA CAP) Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GOgLAj-gcNs Full modlist: https://modwat.ch/u/ThallassaWIP

  • Cara Sporer

    I'm most comfortable with US-American history so that's what I'll tackle. In the 1800s - early 1900s, both alcohol and drugs were commonly used and readily available. [Cocaine](http://www.narconon.org/drug-information/cocaine-circa-1860-1900.html), for example, was used to treat depression, relieve the pain of teething, and used to treat headaches. It was even a main ingredient for [Coca Cola.](https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.theatlantic.com/amp/article/272694/) Narcotics weren't restricted/controlled until the Harrison Narcotics Act of 1914. The US went from being the Oprah of cocaine recommending it for everyone for everything to going, "oh shit - even infants are addicted" within about 100 years. Similarly, [the addiction to alcohol](http://www.pbs.org/kenburns/prohibition/roots-of-prohibition/), was also a motivating factor in the Temperance movement that led up to the prohibition of alcohol in 1919. But, before that, [drug stores also treated alcohol like medicine](https://www.google.com/amp/amp.history.com/news/10-things-you-should-know-about-prohibition) recommending whisky to treat teething babies and alcohol to treat depression. There's also the added complexity that [alcohol was consistently safer than water to drink.](https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK216414/) Remember that, up until then, the work force was predominantly men. Women and children were solely dependent on the income of working men. Addiction exacerbated poverty, was an impediment to work, and caused a lot of problems with work injuries. Workers compensation had recently been enacted (1884) and employers were supportive of the idea of denying workman's compensation to those who were engaged in illegal activity while on the job. Prohibition was a [bipartisan effort](http://m.dailykos.com/story/2013/9/23/1240480/-Mapping-Historical-Votes-Prohibition-Passes-The-House) in which the Republicans and Democrats came together in almost equal representation to support it. It's the one of the few things that Protestants and Catholics agreed upon. Until [Protestant KKK members](https://www.radcliffe.harvard.edu/news/radcliffe-magazine/sort-dry-and-very-shaken?utm_source=SilverpopMailing&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=08.21.daily%20(1)), affiliated with the Republican Party, started conducting vigilante alcohol raids against white ethnic and largely Catholic immigrants (like Irish and Italian immigrants). There was also an element of class warfare as [alcohol became so easy to domestically manufacture - anyone with a tub could do it.](https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK216414/) Suddenly, the wealthy saloon owners and manufacturers of alcohol faced competition with home brewing and distilling. The temperance movement that supported controlling the sales of alcohol were championed by affluent alcohol manufacturers.

  • Alysson Pfeffer

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  • Jonas Kuhic

    i gave it a read, although it never really speaks to the uneven playing field specifically... ie, studying low cost private in low cost areas in low cost countries isn't the same scenario as ghetto high v suburban american high...i will study it later more though, thanks for that. I realize it's jist. I was a huge huge fan of [John Holt](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Holt_(educator)) and [John Taylor Gatto]( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Taylor_Gatto) and [Jon Kozol](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jonathan_Kozol). Hell any of those books by the Jo(h)ns are worth it. Probably to illustrate my point for the above query would be [Savage Inequalities]( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Savage_Inequalities). I feel that this 'method' Woods is advising is similar to where i would like to be but is politically motivated, which is weirdo. I was disheartened by the final appendix c rhetoric especially. I find name calling and term invention for yuks and gaggles dangerous like propaganda. Finding it at the end of an education method is extra disheartening. But, i am aware that it is now ok to make fun and not be pc in all arenas with kids. I'm down. My arena is church and science for getting un-pc. So i can handle a jib and blip during some education talk. Idk, Woods? eh, i read it too quick maybe but it's got this agenda feeling going on. Idk, i will study into it, him and those people later more though; good bunch of info. cheers. I think there needs to be a decently funded basic structure that a lot if not most kids thrive in. I don't have as big of a beef with the education system as these folks do. I think it sounds expensive on the scale you quoted and could be much better in inner cities, but i'm not so sure blowing it up (as this admin seems to be into) and seeing how it falls out is the way to go. I mean , look, we are still inventing cool shit and we are still with all the best colleges, and everybody wants to send there kids here. I did fine on public everything and the military. I have my own business from scratch and some lying. My taxes are bad but not "fuck it get the gun" bad, water is clean and the internet is uncensored. It is not by accident we're still ahead in many ways. That being said, i do not think utter tragedy and mayhem will ensue due to Devos' unqualified obviously nepotistic appointment. The poor will pick up their own slack like they have always done, the middle class will basically figure it out and the rich will find gaping loopholes leaving their children basically inbred vicious racist idiot assholes with amazing jobs and no concept of work. Thus allowing places for the upwardly mobile underclasses to undercut the vicious idiot assholes like i did. Hopefully. It is worth it to note, that someday, it will fall apart because of some dumb shit we do. Kurt Vonnegut told me that. (no he didn't). Don't be dismayed by down votes on these subjects, i go specifically to the 'controversial' tab to find actual conversations and not cheer sessions or comic brigades. Reread Apology by Plato to remind yourself to follow your own gods and never stop talking.

  • Bethany Bins

    That's interesting. I haven't seen many of the themes in Gravity's Rainbow explored in the way Pynchon does it. If this passage is overused or the idea is overdone, in your opinion, I'd like to know what books you read so I can get my hands on them! Here's a quote with a little more context, curious what you think. “In the kitchen, the water in the kettle shakes, creaks toward boiling, and outside the wind blows. Somewhere, in another street, a roofslate slides and falls. Roger has taken Jessica’s cold hands in to warm against his breast, feeling them, icy, through his sweater and shirt, folded in against him. Yet she stands apart, trembling. He wants to warm all of her, not just comic extremities, wants beyond reasonable hope. His heart shakes like the boiling kettle. It has begun to reveal itself: how easily she might go. For the first time he understands why this is the same as mortality, and why he will cry when she leaves. He is learning to recognize the times when nothing really holds her but his skinny, 20-pushup arms…. If she leaves, then it ceases to matter how the rockets fall. But the coincidence of maps, girls, and rocketfalls has entered him silently, silent as ice, and Quisling molecules have shifted in latticelike ways to freeze him. If he could be with her more… if it happened when they were together – in another time that might have sounded romantic, but in a culture of death, certain situations are just more hep to the jive than others – but they’re apart so much…. If the rockets don’t get her there’s still her lieutenant. Damned Beaver/Jeremy is the War, he is every assertion the fucking War has ever made – that we are meant for work and government, for austerity: and these shall take priority over love, dreams, the spirit, the senses and the other second-class trivia that are found among the idle and mindless hours of the day…. Damn them, they are wrong. They are insane. Jeremy will take her like the Angel itself, in his joyless weasel-worded come-along, and Roger will be forgotten, an amusing maniac, but with no place in the rationalized power-ritual that will be the coming peace. She will take her husband’s orders, she will become a domestic bureaucrat, a junior partner, and remember Roger, if at all, as a mistake thank God she didn’t make…. Oh, he feels a raving fit coming on – how the bloody hell can he survive without her? She is the British warm that protects his stooping shoulders, and the wintering sparrow he holds inside his hands. She is his deepest innocence in spaces of bough and hay before wishes were given a separate name to warn that they might not come true, and his lithe Parisian daughter of joy, beneath the eternal mirror, foreswearing perfumes, capeskin to the armpits, all that it too easy, for his impoverishment and more worthy love. You go from dream to dream inside me. You have passage to my last shabby corner, and there, among the debris, you’ve found life. I’m no longer sure which of all the words, images, dreams or ghosts are “yours” and which are “mine.” It’s past sorting out. We’re both someone new now, someone incredible…. His act of faith. In the street the children are singing: Hark, the herald angels sing: Mrs. Simmon’s pinched our King…”

  • Retta Lemke

    Because Jesus saves and Satan destroys. My point is simply that Satan from the beginning has wanted to be God. So the line of thinking where Jesus' divinity and authenticity are called into question are not unique. The Antichrist who is Satan in the flesh will deceive the whole world. He will say he is Christ and God and all but believers in Jesus will be deceived. How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High. Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit. They that see thee shall narrowly look upon thee, and consider thee, saying, Is this the man that made the earth to tremble, that did shake kingdoms; That made the world as a wilderness, and destroyed the cities thereof; that opened not the house of his prisoners? All the kings of the nations, even all of them, lie in glory, every one in his own house. But thou art cast out of thy grave like an abominable branch, and as the raiment of those that are slain, thrust through with a sword, that go down to the stones of the pit; as a carcase trodden under feet. Thou shalt not be joined with them in burial, because thou hast destroyed thy land, and slain thy people: the seed of evildoers shall never be renowned. Prepare slaughter for his children for the iniquity of their fathers; that they do not rise, nor possess the land, nor fill the face of the world with cities. For I will rise up against them, saith the Lord of hosts, and cut off from Babylon the name, and remnant, and son, and nephew, saith the Lord . I will also make it a possession for the bittern, and pools of water: and I will sweep it with the besom of destruction, saith the Lord of hosts. The Lord of hosts hath sworn, saying, Surely as I have thought, so shall it come to pass; and as I have purposed, so shall it stand: Isaiah 14:12‭-‬24 And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever. And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire. Revelation 20:10‭-‬15

  • Kaylah Hegmann

    Former Used Bookstore Employee here. Some others have already provided good reasons to recycle your books or why certain books "should" be discarded/archived based on content. But I wanted to weigh in, because I have answered this question to literally hundreds of customers.   At our bookstore, we didn't just sell used/new books, we bought them directly from the public. So people would come in every day with boxes, bins, bags, suitcases, garbage bags, armfuls, or even **truckloads** of books. It was our job to sift through every buy and determine first whether any of it was salvageable, then whether any of it had value, then what that value should be.   The thing most customers who came in to sell didn't understand was that not every book has value just because "it's a book." Twenty copies of your local church's self-published catechism do not belong on our shelves (ok, maybe in clearance). But, even more than that, all of that paper from books that people are unlikely to read *serves far more purpose getting turned back into paper for new books.* An outdated book, while it may have historical or archival purpose, is likely already kept somewhere for such purposes. Anything we find that appears to be old or outdated but still hold some collectible value, we'd clean up and put in our antiques section. However, beyond mere questionable content value, many buys would come in filled with books that were water-damaged, covered in black mold, filled with handwriting obscuring the text, bent up and curled over to the point where pages were falling out or the spine was broken, *rotted to the point of disintegrating*, covered in stains, infested with critters, experiencing readability deterioration due to foxing, stinking of smoke, or worse. We did donate a ton of old books to children's reading charities, but none of these damaged ones are suitable for children to be handling. Not only are some of them hazardous (black mold) or completely unreadable, they're just plain nasty, and kids should be given books that are at least in "ok" shape no matter what part of the world they're in. So we would throw all these heavily damaged ones in the trash and any recyclable ones (water-damaged was still ok to recycle, etc) in the recycling bin.   There's nothing wrong with used books or books that are a little old, especially if you're responsible about maintaining your old collection. But most people aren't, and it's important to toss your damaged books and recycle your old, outdated ones: this also helps book retailers and printers stay in business as they resupply old books that are still in demand. While literally throwing out brand new books is pretty stupid (since you can donate them or sell them for cash online), the general practice of thinning one's collection is not without its merits. From watching the video, it appears that Mr. Gutierrez is responsibly only filling his shelf with tossed books that are still in good shape. Which is what the kids deserve. Good on him.

  • Abigail Roberts

    Not a centre owner, but high enough up in the chain of command to answer your question. Mostly it is to do with ratios. Quality of care comes from well qualified staff with lower adult-child ratios. Under 2s have a ratio of 1:4. Under 3s have a ratio of 1:5. 3-5yrs ratio of 1:11. The most profitable room is the kindy room because you require fewer staff per child. The least profitable are babies and toddlers, they always run at a loss. They are also the rooms that are most desirable and have the most demand. Most babies and toddlers have a very long day because those parents tend to work full-time. So the children you have in attendance for the longest amount of time, take up the most resources, thus money. Most nursery rooms will be full. You need to have a diploma educator (minimum $23.81 p/h) and cert III educator (minimum $20.61 p/h). You also have to cover them for a lunch break, a tea break (negotiable) and weekly programming time. So the float staff need a salary too (you'll usually have at least two float staff). You also have to have them covered for the full day, so even though the educator may be there for 8-9 hours, the centre is open for 12 hours, someone in a different room will be covering that later shift. This industry has a lot of turn-over. Lots of sickness because parents dose them up on panadol and they infect all the staff and other children. So you have to hire casual staff, who attract a leave loading on top of that hourly rate. Also holidays, sick leave, that all costs money. You have to buy a lot consumables - nappies, toilet paper, hand towels, gloves, chemicals. We go through a lot because children have a lot of bodily leakages. You have to buy resources from "preferred suppliers" who absolutely rip-off the centres (charging sometimes 5 x the retail price). You have to pay rent and your electricity bills (bad if your centre is air-conditioned) and water consumption (children do lots of water play, that's a lot of water to pay for). You have to pay for a lot of colour printing because the EYLF is obsessed with documenting children's learning through photos. Means you have to have a fair few computers too (operating costs with keeping all of that up to date). If you're part of a chain, you have to send a big cut to head office (including not-for-profit centres). That funds the salaries of all those people working in policy, HR, the CEO. People who do all the behind-the-scenes work. If you're a for-profit centre, your owner will take a large cut, often having to cut back on resources to allow for that profit (which is what Eddie Groves did with ABC). Many childcare workers buy resources out of their own pocket because they'll beg their director for months on end and will get nothing. I routinely buy all my books and resources because I don't want to wait for 6 months and be told "no, we can't afford that."

  • Rogelio Bartell

    >It is a bitter cold morning in November, and the sun is just creeping up over the horizon. But for over an hour already, two unmarked vans have been idling or parked outside S.O.M.E. (So Others Might Eat), a longtime nonprofit that feeds D.C.’s homeless. These are the eviction company vans, known as “trucks,” and they are waiting for cheap, off-the-books labor. >Years of experience tells them they can get it at S.O.M.E., where men who sleep on the street or in the shelter congregate in the mornings. These men, and the occasional woman, are always looking to make a few dollars, and the eviction companies know the homeless will accept below the minimum wage of $11.50—accept even $7 total to work an eviction, which can take a few hours or most of a day. And the companies also know that, because they are homeless, these men mostly will not complain, even if the job is to make others homeless. >. . . The people waiting for crew work outside S.O.M.E. take the jobs knowing the day will not be easy. According to interviews with more than a dozen people who work the trucks, this is what they are up against: First, there is no guarantee they’ll get paid what they’re offered. Second, there are no set hours. Also, if the work lasts all day, they may be able to eat or be given water, but they probably won’t. There is no insurance if anyone gets hurt. >There are no gloves and no dollies to move heavy furniture—only trash bags. There is often no transportation back to S.O.M.E. once the evictions are over, which could be in D.C. or far away in Virginia or Maryland. >. . . Workers also have to be hard—or hardened—because, as in the case of the Williams family, the people being evicted are often home. There might be little children or old ladies or parents who are angry. And they may react in many different ways. They might swear, or shout, or cry. They might beg not to put them out on the street. >Dupree Cross, 38, with a graying beard, has worked evictions that pick up outside S.O.M.E. and elsewhere for years, but he says he mostly stopped after a man shot himself during an eviction. The suicide was a turning point for Cross but not an isolated event or a matter of his bad luck. In 2006, multiple psychiatrists wrote a letter to a journal of the American Psychiatric Association warning that eviction had been a significant risk factor for suicide in their patients. They asked why this had not been studied before. >“I got emotional with it after someone shot his head off,” Cross says. “We were evicting someone and the wife came out screaming: ‘He shot his head off!’ After that I said, ‘I can’t do this work anymore.’” >When men like Cross drop out, the companies know dozens of others among the homeless are ready and willing to take his place. . .

  • Quinton Weber

    Hmm let's see... Chapter 1: Shirou cooked "Yosenabe" for everyone (but especially for Saber) except Rin since she's not there. https://dinnerwithweijia.com/2012/04/30/yosenabe-japanese-hot-pot-with-seafood-and-vegetables/ Chapter 2: Shirou invited Lancer for dinner with him, Taiga and Saber since Lancer heard Shirou talking about cooking some fish. The menu is "Baked salmon wrapped in aluminium foil" (something like this: https://books.google.co.th/books?id=9pXp6iRz26sC&pg=PA119&lpg=PA119&dq=baked+salmon+wrapped+in+foil&source=bl&ots=x9dMHDOt3F&sig=8-9agJ-qjHPp7AfTQXlBnJSISEg&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiF3I3ix7rSAhXJpZQKHSMQDgsQ6AEIHDAB#v=onepage&q=baked%20salmon%20wrapped%20in%20foil&f=false) Chapter 3: Shirou cooked ”Haru no chirashi sushi (春のちらし寿司) for Illya on girl's children day. http://park.ajinomoto.co.jp/recipe/card/710300 Chapter 4: Shirou visited Ryuudou Temple for his part-time job with his boss (Neko-san) and saw Assassin guarded the bro-gate alone. He made "Bacon with spring vegetables sandwich" for his boss as a lunch and shared a portion with Assassin. Chapter 5: Issei gave Shirou a lot of bamboo shoots so he brought them back home and Sakura cooked "Bamboo shoots gratin" for everyone, including taking some bamboo shoots back home to cook the gratin for Shinji. (Something like this https://washoku.guide/recipe/2187507) Chapter 6: Flashback chapter when Shirou start learning how to cook and made "Hamburg steak" for Taiga and Kiritsugu. Chapter 7: After visiting "Waku Waku Water Land", Shirou made "Cold Tea Rice" for Saber and Rin. https://www.nagatanien.co.jp/recipe/590/detail.html Chapter 8: As a thank to Shirou and Sakura for helping Rin cleaned her house, our Chinese food specialist cooked "Five Ingredients Fried Rice" for them. (Gomoku Chahan: http://www.pbs.org/food/fresh-tastes/gomoku-chahan/) Chapter 9: As a loving wife, Caster asked Shirou to teach her the fundamental of Japanese food. So he taught her to make grilled fish, pickled plum, and some common side dishes for Japanese food. Special Chapter 1: Picnic chapter with Shirou making Onigiri and Kakiage Soumen. (Soumen: http://www.orangepage.net/recipes/detail_116727) Special Chapter 2: Highlighted chapter for me as a Saber fan :P Saber wanted to repay for all the cooking Shirou had done for her so she asked Sakura how to make pancakes (hotcake in Japanese) and made some for Shirou.

  • Dale Renner

    "Lowrey: I figure the infrastructure—having access to hospitals and roads, having access to education for your kids, to programs like S-CHIP, again for your kids, to clean water… Deaton: A lot of these programs have been turned into block grants, like [the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, or welfare, program], and it’s very hard for people to get them. And life expectancy in much of Appalachia is below life expectancy in Bangladesh." The conversation is all over the place, but they cite these [books](https://www.amazon.com/2-00-Day-Living-Nothing-America/dp/054481195X): "the number of American families living on $2.00 per person, per day, has skyrocketed to one and a half million American households, including about three million children. But the fuller story remained to be told. Where do these families live? How did they get so desperately poor?What do they do to survive?" " And [Evicted](https://www.amazon.com/Evicted-Poverty-Profit-American-City/dp/0553447432): "atthew Desmond takes us into the poorest neighborhoods of Milwaukee to tell the story of eight families on the edge. Arleen is a single mother trying to raise her two sons on the $20 a month she has left after paying for their rundown apartment. Scott is a gentle nurse consumed by a heroin addiction. Lamar, a man with no legs and a neighborhood full of boys to look after, tries to work his way out of debt. Vanetta participates in a botched stickup after her hours are cut. All are spending almost everything they have on rent, and all have fallen behind. The fates of these families are in the hands of two landlords: Sherrena Tarver, a former schoolteacher turned inner-city entrepreneur, and Tobin Charney, who runs one of the worst trailer parks in Milwaukee. They loathe some of their tenants and are fond of others, but as Sherrena puts it, “Love don’t pay the bills.” She moves to evict Arleen and her boys a few days before Christmas. Even in the most desolate areas of American cities, evictions used to be rare. But today, most poor renting families are spending more than half of their income on housing, and eviction has become ordinary, especially for single mothers. In vivid, intimate prose, Desmond provides a ground-level view of one of the most urgent issues facing America today. As we see families forced into shelters, squalid apartments, or more dangerous neighborhoods, we bear witness to the human cost of America’s vast inequality—and to people’s determination and intelligence in the face of hardship."

  • Adam Koelpin

    I've written my review to my blog at http://harnessinglight.conryclan.com/2017/02/05/fc17-assignment-01-critique/#bamc113 Here's the text for easy reading :) Photo 1: Wow! As someone who struggles with composition, this impresses me so much. The leading lines of the river, the row of buildings with the shadows that almost accentuate the higglediepiggldy roof line. The reflections and crisp white boats. The lovely warm golden tones sandwiched between the blue sky and river. What isn’t to love? When looking at it at full resolution, it makes me think of those children’s books where there’s a lot of detail on each page. There’s so much to look at and explore. Simply magnificent! Photo 2: The fire is spectacular. Sadly the rest of the image is pretty distracting, the red object toward the left as well as the tree with the lit up trunk.. The image is also fairly noisy, so I’m assuming you used a high ISO to freeze the spark trails, rather than end up with a bug orange glow. I also find the composition awkward, with the fire too far over on the right. On the bright side however, the fire truly is spectacular. Be sure to try and catch it again. Photo 3: Oddly enough I recently watched a YouTube video all about bird photography, so will offer some thoughts with a bit of theory added in. The bird gets lost in the detail of the image. A shallow depth of field may have helped isolate it from the background. I also find the composition a little awkward, with the bird looking out of the frame. Perhaps if it was facing the other way, of you had composed is so that the bird was closer to the left of frame. The only other criticism which I’m a little reluctant to offer is based on the sharpness of the bird. There looks to be plenty of detail there, but it just doesn’t appear to be sharp to my eyes. Photo 4: In contrast to the above shot, I love this one. The isolation with the shallow depth of field works well. On it’s own, the background may be considered to busy, but together with the rest of your “urban” photos, it forms part of a story nicely. Even the fact that the bird is fairly small in the frame, is OK, as it’s well positioned and stands out nicely. If anything the smallness of the type of bird is nicely emphasised by the space in the composition. Photo 5: This is a tough one. The sky, clouds, horizon and water are spectacular. The timber poles and structures are just too busy for my liking though. To be honest, living on the coast, we have lots of this type of scenery, and I always struggle making it into a nice image. The photo’s I have seen that work well for me are when they are able to frame the image to reduce the amount of structure, so that what is in the image becomes the primary feature, and the focal point, or used as a leading line.

  • Jamar Waelchi

    Let's see... I'd specifically advise examining Hebrews 10:19-24 *19 Therefore, brothers and sisters, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, 20 by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, his body, 21 and since we have a great priest over the house of God, 22 let us draw near to God with a sincere heart and with the full assurance that faith brings, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. 23 Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.* ...then I'd advise reading all of Hebrews. Haha!! I've JUST finished it, since we're focusing on the book in church, and like most books of the Bible there is just SO much to unpack, but here are some key ideas that the book goes over that made me think of your situation: -examinations of patriarchal law, in particular the nature of the priesthood and the tabernacle, how the Most Holy Place was only entered once a year by the high priest, and then only after a special sacrifice. Because these sacrifices do not really cleanse sin once and for all, they are imperfect shadows of the heavenly concepts. -Christ is a perfect, undying high priest who, through his sacrifice, cleansed the sins of those who call his name once and for all. In the gospels it was said the curtain separating the people from the Most Holy Place was torn when Jesus died, and in Hebrews it says that he holds this curtain open for us, so to speak. -Communion, from my understanding, is an act symbolizing our dependence on Christ for our spiritual nurturance, and to break bread with our brothers and sisters of the church. If you refrain from approaching the Lord until you are sin free, you will remain cast out forever, because it is impossible to accomplish this without the Lord's provision, namely through his Son. It is like trying to get into an entry-level job that requires 5 years experience, a catch-22. -All this to say that I think confession is a wonderful tool, and that you should refrain from sin, even knowing that you will fail. But refraining from approaching the Lord because of your sins is a losing battle. It's like being sick, and then refraining from going to the doctor until you are well. Confessing to your brothers is healing, but God's ears are bent towards his children, and He will hear you if you speak directly to Him, whether for confession, praise, or doubt. I hope this helps you. Please forgive me if I've misunderstood your situation, and feel free to offer explanation.

  • Aurelie Hermiston

    Example from an anti-vaccine article: > Not only has Kennedy previously said that there was a “holocaust” of children hurt by immunization. But also lobbied for vaccine exemptions and written anti-vax books as well. > Good! Thanks for the information. They are inventing even more vaccines which they want people to take when young, in the military, while pregnant and give double dose flu shots to elderly. We may lose a whole generation of kids to Autism…mostly boys if they don’t change.Elderly may die or get Alzheimer’s. They also need to ban GMO/Round. Gluten/dairy/soy/sugar/GMO/food with a label hurts and **Fluoride water** in addition to vaccines which are give too young/too many total/too many at one time. **Even one vaccine hurts my cats.** **Pets are getting too many vaccines also which have mercury/Al in them. .People and pets need grain free and chemical free lives.** Vaccines may hurt and not help. People need to learn how to detox which Conventional medicine doesn’t tell them. Supplements need to be allowed/promoted and Alternative medicine allowed to thrive. 2000mg of fish oil daily in addition to Celiac which which may help the immune system stopped my colds/flu for more than 20 years. People need fish oil and a grain free diet which help the immune system. instead of vaccines. Get kids/pets/animals into the sunlight that helps the immune system making Vit D in their skin. Food with a label compared to eating organic may destroy American’s brain/body/health fast. People new to the country may lose their health fast with our vaccines/standard American diet etc. American are used to being sick/no energy/tired/depressed etc. They don’t realize they could feel very different if they ate different and did only natural help. I had 1000X more energy and felt 20 years younger after 2 weeks of no gluten when my intestines started to heal and absorb nutrients again. Clean up pollution/food/chemicals…get natural only help and exercise and people’s immune system’s may be strong. Fix the root cause…not take drugs etc that only cover symptoms. Vaccines/antibiotics may lower the immune system so people may get the flu/shingles etc. Fear makes people take vaccines/Chemo/radiation when cheap natural helps in a better way.

  • Margarete Reynolds

    My only childhood friend. She was a cute, fixed, short haired, dark gray cat. She ended up being 14ish years old when she finally passed. When the parents were rough and loud when I was a child, she was my pillow, nuzzling away my tears until I played quietly with her in the sanctuary that was my room. When I got kicked out, I fought tooth and nail to bring her with me, even going as far as keeping her a few closed doors away from the landlord that was allergic. I returned her to the parents when I took my trip to Europe, but she ran away from them several times so I returned to find her skin and bones. I spoiled her with catnip in every other corner, water never a day old, and both dry and wet food for two years. When I went into the Air Force, I asked my parents to send me pictures of her, and after it was too late for me to go "home" to them, or more importantly, to her for christmas, she got really sick. I had just gotten used to the idea of her being really sick when I got the call the next day that she passed. My father is not known for showing any emotion except anger, but he was crying when he told me and it's the 5th time I have heard him cry. I tear up just thinking about it. Her name was Jezebel. My dad named her after she was fixed because he thought it was ironic that a female that couldn't have children was labeled with definition such as "a morally unrestrained woman." The only thing that was ever unrestrained was her lovely meows when she wanted to say something. She purred loudly in happiness, and meowed to let you know if the food was gone (she never bugged if it still had food, because the parents dogs taught her to eat every bit before bugging). I have videos of her meowing in unhappiness over bath time and her "pouncing" on the cursor after she was playful from the scent of my mint tea. (Catnip is in the mint family) It's been a few months, but if I think about it, I've lost my little sister. I tried my best to care for her but I wasn't there for her when she was in pain. I had planned on driving her back to my base after I graduated but alas, it wasn't in the books. I hope she has lots of catnip and ribbons and cuddling wherever she is. Love you, Jezebel. Hope the other kitties don't pull your tail like the other pets tried to do. <3

  • Ubaldo Will

    My personal opinion? Who cares if it is lore-friendly. One of the best playthroughs I have ever done was on Oblivion with a joke character I made with a friend of mine. Her name was Queen Firecrotch and she was a badass, reckless bitch with no concern for anyone but herself. She was a depressingly old Altmer with wrinkly skin, giant bags around her ice blue eyes, and neon red hair. She wore nothing but enchanted Black Finery that she found in the Shivering Isles that provided 12% shield, a magical hat that gave her night eye called HELM OF THE CROTCH, a ring that let her walk on water, and an enchanted mace called DEATHBALL that let her set her enemies on fire. She would immediately pummel anyone that spoke poorly towards her without regret, and would frequently murder people for being rude and/or existing within her general vicinity. Her favorite spell was Finger of the Mountain, which she would shoot at anything movable, causing the objects to fly around (the best to shoot were dead sheep and books). Speaking of books! She hated and therefore banished from her Queendom all men, women, children, and books - but especially books. She made it a point to shoot her magic spell inside any bookstore she could find, to cause a great deal of stress for the store owner, who she would kill if they talked smack for her actions. Some of the best times we had with the Queen was choosing to become a vampire. For most other characters, vampirism makes you look pretty ghastly, so we thought that it would make the Queen even older (therefore adding to the humor of the character). Turns out that she somehow came out looking younger, which simply would not do, so we immediately sought the cure for vampirism - which took a lot of time lol. By the end of the trek we had accumulated quite a hefty bounty for our general shenanigans, so we went to prison for 3 whole years. When she came out, the Queen was ollllllllllllllllllld, which we didn't think was possible, but it was certainly evident. So in the end we got what we wanted out of the journey! All of this is irrelevant but my point is - sometimes making wacky, crazy, or otherwise lore-unfriendly characters can lead to some great memories down the road. My friends and I quote the shit we would say from our time playing as the Queen together, and she was originally born from our minds nearly ten years ago (wow, I feel old).

  • Kayleigh Mraz

    > as I know the Amish don't allow outsiders to join I was a foundling kinder. That means I was not borne to Mama and Papa. They found me. Eventually, like a very long time later, they found some of my kin folk which were Amish as well, like 3rd cousins or something and adopted me with their permission. Unfortunately it didn't last until adulthood because my biological mother ruined it...another time another story though. My point is they accepted me as Amish right off. Amish foster and adopt children also. Amish let adults in also. You have to seek with a sincere heart, prove you are teachable, submit to the elders will, and of course to the will of God. It depends on the order, but many new orders have plenty of converts. Old orders are harsher and much harder to enter. I was adopted into the old order. No electricity, no running water, not a power tool nor gas engine. Everything was done with muscle power and the will of God. Hand washing, draft horses to plant, milking by hand (20 cows morning and night), hand woodworking tools, hand sewn clothing, no toys allowed, and German taught at the local school which was basically an old barn. Barefoot all summer, with a pair of boots boughten each year for school only. Papa took a week's pay to get my boots and German books. It was very expensive. If you seek, you will be accepted. Now they will probably refuse to enter a door you open until you are accepted. You may even be called "English" which is a bit offensive. They will be curious and try to dissuade you many times. It isn't a life for just anyone you see. I would still be Amish except for, I think it's silly to be shun a small child for cursing for a full two weeks. There are other more complicated reasons of course, but that one bothered me a bit. They take their shunnings seriously. The elders decide the children's punishments when the community becomes aware of their misdeeds, so mom and dad can't save you. To be Amish is to be part of the community and to give over your will to the community in many ways. It's a better life than not. It's just not for everyone.

  • Catherine Baumbach

    > it makes "self-victimization" the main argument. I don't even understand what that means, I'm talking about children that aren't myself and talking about the amount of resources their schools have. There is no mention of some kind of victim status, the only thing I talked about is that the resources schools and communities have is damaged by parents trying to make sure their kids have advantages others can't or don't have. What part of that has to do with self victimization or victim status? I mean these are just buzz words the rightists use to halt progress, they don't even apply in this case. >Accusing the affluent of being inherently bad promotes That isn't what I said at all. Read my post again. >Poor children in specific do not lack the agency or motivation to rise up in an impoverished school district. You don't understand this phenomena if you think an actual child can 'boot strap' themselves out of a school with teachers that don't care, not enough books, and unsafe water. >Saying that no school has the right to be better than another school seems regressive. How is it regressive? Do you think that some people deserve a lower quality education than others? It's certainly progressive to ensure that wealth cannot buy a golden ticket through life. > Handing out participation trophies and pussifying students Making sure every school provides the same quality of education doesn't have anything to do with trophies or mandatory sex reassignment surgery for male children. >capitalism is America's backbone And it needs to be replaced. >but I would much rather have a social class of wealthy citizens over a ruling government/political class that has the confiscatory power at its own discretion. Do you not think that the wealthy class currently commands the government? Also why would making schools equal eliminate either? Why would eliminating wealth until all people have their needs met create some government class? These aren't based in reality.

  • Casimir Powlowski

    Imagine for the moment that God came down to heaven and said directly to your face that he made the earth in six days. Would you believe him? Here's God doing exactly that to Moses. > 11 For **in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is**, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it. [Exodus 20: 11] Jesus said to the Jews that if they would believe Moses then they would believe him. In Exodus 20:11 (from the 10 commandments in the books of Moses) we see God telling Moses that he made the earth in six days and Moses telling the children of Israel that God made the earth in six days. > 46 For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me; for he wrote of me. > 47 But **if ye believe not his writings, how shall ye believe my words**? [John 5: 46-47] Do you believe Moses? If you don't believe Moses then you wouldn't believe Jesus if he came down from heaven and told you to your face that he made the earth in six days. > It seems pretty obvious to me from this passage that with God's time not being our time: the "7 days" in Genesis are not referring to our definition of 7 days, but God's. If that's how you're going to interpret Psalm 90: 2-4 then you should come to the conclusion that God made the earth in six thousand years -- not billions of years. These two numbers are many orders of magnitude apart. The bible tells us that in the end times people would be willingly ignorant of the flood and the creation. > 5 For this they willingly are ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water: [2 Peter 3: 5] If you read Exodus 20:11 (where God told Moses to his face that he made the earth in six days) and walk away believing that God meant billions of years then you're willingly ignorant. To be willingly ignorant means you're choosing to be stupid.

  • Janie Dibbert

    The whole point of his post was asking if Islam would take over Europe, to which the answer is a likely yes. Not a question on the ethics of Islam, or for you to criticise his 'racist ideas'. I do not believe that he was talking about those being terrorists, but rather those that worship a radical ideology to do with Islam. With the rise of Islam in the UK, and the rest of Europe, many new social aspects also take place - this isn't just about terrorism. Burkas, and many political attitudes that come with Islam are also migrating to Europe. Firm atheist, but your point about "In the bible it orders followers to stone their children to death if they disobey, but nobody worries that Christians will do this" refers to the Old Testament, which Jesus allegedly came and said "hey guys, you got it all wrong, this is how to live". "These holy books are 2000 years old, many factors were influenced by the values of the time and religious people of all faiths acknowledge this and interpret the parts they find most important." Much of Islam however, especially from these regions of the world which have long been cut off from the rest of the world, due to poverty etc. (no access to internet, electricity, running water and the like for many farmers etc.), HAS NOT PROGRESSED. Yes, a lot has, and there are many secularised muslims, but at the same time, there are many who still follow the religion to the Tee. This is not an attack on Islam, but a point that due to the wide ranging countries in which it is present, and the way in which it is followed, there are many different views of how the religion should be followed, all from Muslims themselves. Christianity on the other hand, is not like this, as whilst the religion still has fanatics, the bible does not preach death to infidels etc. and there are basically no politically motivated attacks on the public by Christians. Christianity has progressed. 500 years ago, it was the most dangerous religion. Now a days, I would say it is hard to argue that Islam is not.

  • Eliezer Bosco

    > What does a McDonalds not have that a sit down resturant does Table-side service, for one. Chairs that actually move and aren't attached to a table. A folding menu you get at the table. Real plates & silverware - that are often doubled up (water glass & drink glass, salad and dinner forks, etc). And, most importantly: an atmosphere of relative, *expected* quiet. In short, there are a LOT of things that you probably wouldn't even think of. But my kids were sitting politely at restaurant tables by age 5 - and, yes, learning how to calculate tips not too long after that...and they were reminding us to tip if it looked like we may had forgotten long before that. But they would not have learned to do so had I not exposed them to that sort of environment. (And yes, I know they were polite and I'm not just whitewashing because we *often* got/still get unsolicited compliments about how polite they were/are) You cannot tell a child "you need to sit quietly" when the whole location they are in has *other* kids running madly around. You lose any semblance of authority because the child can see perfectly well that you're telling them that for no logical reason. But if you are in a place where good behavior is obviously *expected*, they comprehend that and, most times, they *want* to behave. When they don't, it's usually because the *parent* made a mistake - brought them when they were too tired or over-hungry, didn't bring coloring books or something to keep them from getting bored, etc. But in short, if you want children to grow up into well behaved adults, you need to SHOW them how well-behaved adults behave. And banning them to 'kid-acceptable' venues makes it pretty much impossible to do that.

  • Marcelo Rohan

    Um, because the products he sells are made only in a very few select villages in Kenya. Its a very traditional craft. They made these items and a few runners wore them. My brother has strong connections in pro running world and spent a long time trying to get one of these items. He continued to further these connections and then had the idea to share them with the world. Even then he has encountered many road blocks and finally flew to to kenya to meet directly with the producers. It's nothing like the basic model of morality you think it is. So spare me with the "moral person". Ive read Adam Smith's Theory of Moral sentiments, taken semester long courses on Kant, blah blah, did the philosophy thing. And im a big hippie, so you're hard pressed to meet someone who believes more in morality than and ethical treatment of all living beings, but i also understand the world isnt a utopia. For the record, my bro took 2 full suitcases with him to Kenya with about 2 outfits for himself and the rest filled with shoes, clothes, and books for children over there. All of this cam be found on his instagram i posted. It's cool you want to be a raging skeptic and make ridiculous claims not grounded in reality, but understand the world isnt a philosophy class in ethics and morality. The real world is a shot sandwich and every day is another bite and my bro has done a ton to help alleviate the simuffering of those in the kenyan villages he works in, he even donates a good portion of his proceeds to clean drinking water on top of everything for the villagers. So yea, you can have the last word, but until you have anything to add aside from rosy textbook ideas about ethics and morality, please, spare us all.

  • Justen Wolff

    "This is what now unites Yennefer and Francesca, Triss thought feverishly, still avoiding eye contact. The calculation. Because, what they did had something to do with parks and breeding rabbits. Yes, their plans for Ciri and Kovir’s king, although seemingly unlikely, are completely real. They have already done this. They place who they want on the thrones, they create links and dynasties as they wished, as it is more convenient for them. The used charms, potions and aphrodisiacs. The kings and queens enter into foreign marriages, often morganatic, against any plan, intentions and treaties. And then those who want children and should not are administered secret measures to prevent pregnancy. Those who did not want to have children, but it was necessary to do so are instead or the promised cured were given placebos, water with licorice. Hence, all these incredible connections. Calanthe, Pavetta … Ciri. Yennefer was involved in it. And now regrets it. And she is right. Heck, if Geralt finds out about it …" This is a specific part in the books, it is its own subsection. You can argue that Triss is in the wrong, but i think for such piece of information be separated in the middle of a discussion and coming from a character that is REALLY REALLY friends with Yennefer and knows her better than Geralt (Yennefer even says that he is not enough to come between them), i think it's realiable. But again, there's arguments against it, i'll not deny, i just think it's highly unlikely for such thing to be put in the book and not mentioned again if is just wrong.

  • Jaydon Bogan

    But it could go the other way and normalise deviant behaviour, which is a big no-no. You can defend it all you want for it not being real and not harming anybody physically or mentally. That's fine, because it can lead down a slippery slope where any type of fictional creation can be outlawed. Books like the widely regarded "Lolita" would soon become illegal and banning famous fiction does not generally go down well. But there's always a slippery slope argument for the other side too. People often say that it woud normalise paedophilia to the point where these dolls will not be enough for prospective child abusers and that it's better to nip the problem in the bud by banning anything that could encourage it. Or that like all types of porn, the dolls will not be enough and paedos will eventually move onto actual children. That makes these dolls, or normalising other types of fiction, a huge danger to society You could also argue that it's like calling every normal person a potential rapist based on what they could do, rather than what they have done (which leads down the road of throught crimes rather than actual crime). Adult sex dolls already ring alarm bells to most people. It's a huge can of worms that I wouldn't be willing to open, personally. Nobody in their right mind would advocate for anything of the sort anyway. Unless you want to be labelled as a nonce by association. IIRC, Canada is also a country where bestiality is legal, so raping a dog or a horse would land you in less hot water than a piece of plastic.

  • Kirsten Doyle

    Paramid scam. I got a call from a company I do not remember applying to, so I said fuck it and went to the "interview". They said we would shadow somebody, so I was teamed up with this young 20ish middle eastern kid. He was super amped and said he wanted to make money today. Nobody at any time said what the job was, and I was ready to bail. So we were sent into vehicles and driven to a shopping center. He parks the car and he starts talking. Were selling a catalog of random shit. Absolutely random shit. Wrapping paper, children's coloring books, small water fountains, and pool/pond supplies or something like that. Random shit. This amped up dude begins running after people in the parking lot, going into businesses and trying to sell. He went into a Walgreens until we were kicked out. Wandered over to a bunch of doctors offices, I pointed out the no soliciting sign and he said "but they don't know what we have!" So we break for lunch, he tells me I make money if I bring in more people ect ect. I dropped my politeness and asked him "you ever heard of a paramid scheme?" and explained it to him. I even used his own diagram which formed a paramid. I explained it's a scam, I'm not doing it, and your being taken advantage of. He was in shock. I shook his hand and wished him better luck, and left. Called a friend to pick me up and to go get my car. I remember keeping the catalog, because of how random the items were.

  • Anita Wuckert

    Well, if you want a kid to practice something and keep doing it, you have to raise and cultivate his intrinsic motivation (motivation of doing an activity just for the pleasure of doing it). Well, the bastard just probably blew the kid's intrinsic motivation to do math and homework to smithereens. Now, it is associated to traumatic memories, fear and humiliation instead of pride, fun, encouragement and appreciation. Way to go bastard! Want your kid to crack his school books, first go crack some books about basic parenting you lazy, dumb, sadistic fuck! Although the politically correct answer would be to hand over the kid to competent social services (don't think that it is that great in China) arrest the father for abuse and send him to mandatory counseling and charge all the laughing onlookers (wtf was wrong with all of them) with failure to provide assistance to a person in danger, I am quite tempted to give the kid a hug, a blanket, hot cocoa and a teddy and tie the father and the onlookers each on a pole that is lowered into the water while saying "Is it still funny you sick motherfuckers". Yeah, I read that mistreated kids are more likely to grow into abusers but some of those kids just grow into the polar opposite (parents determined to cherish their children and protect them from the abuse they went through). I think that it depends on the kid's innate predispositions and how other people would treat him afterwards (therapy and a new loving environment would help).

  • Jonas Gerhold

    I'm on to my third kid, and I've never owned a crib. We use a Graco Pack'n'Play until they move to a regular bed between ages 2 and 3. Be sure to get a water-resistant pad to put on the "mattress." Things I would not register for: - clothes - special diaper pail. A lidded trash can will be fine if you empty it frequently enough. You don't want gross diapers in sitting around anyway. - Swings/bouncers/rockers/walkers. If you can someone to loan/hand-me-down these or find super cheap second hand, that's great! Some babies love them and others don't, and it's nice to find out before you buy one or commit to having it clutter up the living room. - Same with carriers if you want to babywear. Definitely try on with your baby before you commit, if you can. And for me - blankets! I should not have registered for more than one pack of receiving blankets/muslin blankets, because I have sooo many craft-people in the family. I was inundated with quilts, handmade flannel blankies, afghans, etc. That depends on your family. I always register for books because I like to write the name of the giver in them. It's fun to show the kids in future years. And if you have books on the registry, I find people are more likely to buy your baby their favorite children's book. It feels personal and you get some great books you might not have known about.

  • Jamarcus Mraz

    (Reposted from main board) Hi there! I've read through the previous posts here and it seems hit and miss when getting engineering work in Finland! I'm currently in a master of civil engineering and am moving to Helsinki as an exchange student to complete my final research project. I am hoping to secure some student work either during the summer (prior to commencing my exchange), during the autumn semester or after completing my degree. I have already applied at a few consultancies such as pöyry, rambol, fortum etc, both for open applications and kesätyo positions, but have had little luck. It's early days and I'll continue to apply, but I wanted to get an idea of the market for civil engineering students/graduates. I have a few months of Engineering experience in renewable energy assets and water resources, but nothing long term. It would be nice motivation to hear stories about any foreign graduate civil engineers that speak little-to-know Finnish and were able to land a graduate job in Helsinki. Especially those who had a degree from their home country. PS I have studied in Helsinki before in 2014 so this will be my second time. I have a few contacts, but nothing significant/outstanding. I am also learning finnish everyday by myself by reading children's books :)

  • Stefanie Pacocha

    Yeah that's the logical explanation, does that make you feel better about yourself? And what exactly do you propose to do to stop all the suffering of probably more than half the women and children of the world so well say, 2 billion people? It's pathetic you think you can drag out the dirty laundry of other countries as some kind of excuse for helping abused women in this country. Why does this only extend to women's rights? Hey, plenty of people in the 3rd world can't get an education yet you selfishly go to college. People in China can't worship freely but all you can talk about is the war on Christmas. Why fix Flint when people in 3rd world countries don't have clean water? People in 3rd world countries don't have plumbing or toilet paper yet you selfishly demand toilet paper. How about we support women's rights and the continued improvement of the country because we don't lower ourselves to the least common denominator and we lead by example? Oh and btw VA just outlawed child marriage and it's one of the first states with it on the books to do so last year, and a Republican politician voted against it. Plenty of statea still haven't done so like Texas. It may not be common but child marriage is legal in this US, expletive expletive.

  • Edmund Marvin

    I am an old woman now. The buffaloes and black-tail deer are gone, and our Indian ways are almost gone. Sometimes I find it hard to believe that I ever lived them. My little son grew up in the white man's school. He can read books, and he owns cattle and has a farm. He is a leader among our Hidatsa people, helping teach them to follow the white man's road. He is kind to me. We no longer live in an earth lodge, but in a house with chimneys, and my son's wife cooks by a stove. But for me, I cannot forget our old ways. Often in summer I rise at daybreak and steal out to the corn fields, and as I hoe the corn I sing to it, as we did when I was young. No one cares for our corn songs now. Sometimes in the evening I sit, looking out on the big Missouri. The sun sets, and dusk steals over the water. In the shadows I see again to see our Indian village, with smoke curling upward from the earth lodges, and in the river's roar I hear the yells of the warriors, and the laughter of little children of old. It is but an old woman's dream. Then I see but shadows and hear only the roar of the river, and tears come into my eyes. Our Indian life, I know, is gone forever. - Waheenee, Hidatsa

  • Herbert Collins

    It's fantastic seeing you here, congratulations on the award! Here are my few "short" questions, and I'll try staying out of the deep water. 1. As a writer I love world building. However the detail and culture of your stories are so incredibly thought out. Do you storyboard and document all the family lines, kingdomes, traditions, languages, ect before hand or do these things evolve as you write them? 2. I assume that the Worldhoppers (characters who travel from planet to planet between books) can and sometimes enter into romantic relationships. Have there ever been any children born on one world with powers from another? (For example: A misting being born and raised on Roshar) 3. I have heard you say you consult with doctors, physicist, and other professionals in order to keep your books as grounded in reality as you can. How did you meet these individuals and how early in your career did you have their help?

  • Amari Smitham

    I know those scenes and they're always ones I remember when people talk about how they want to make "darker" takes on Oz, since they're go-to scenes to prove that Oz can be dark enough on its own. But it still doesn't make sense to me to age Dorothy up because of those scenes. She was a child in the original books, and other adaptations had no problem portraying a young Dorothy witnessing those scenes (the comic book and manga adaptations come to mind). Now the gun argument I can understand--that's fair. But why not just keep Dorothy as a young girl and not have her wield a gun? Other westerns have gunfights without showing children using guns. Dorothy doesn't do much fighting in the original books either, other than throwing water on the witch. Otherwise, her companions fight for her. I noticed you never addressed the issue of how her attire doesn't fit a western set in the mid-1800s, which I'm still suspecting is a big reason why she was aged up.

  • Eulalia Heller

    There is a used bookstore in the Washington, DC, area called Books for America. They're a non-profit and they regularly donate all of the children's books to the local school district. They also send hundreds and thousands of books to prisons and anybody else that wants them and can't afford. Anything that can't be donated is sold in the bookstore and all of the money goes back to pay for their charity work apart from what the employees are paid. When I was moving away from the area, I brought two shopping bags worth of books. Most of mine were history and literature and other things that I thought someone else could use. They took everything and gave me a tax receipt for it. I'm pretty sure those books were put to good use. Finally, I always recycle books that are in bad shape. Water damage, mold, whatever. I usually recycle it. There's no point in trying to sell books in that condition. Nobody will buy them.

  • Velva Braun

    I empty my backpack everyday (mostly). I keep my pencil bag, tampons, glasses, charger, headphones and chapstick inside. I empty out my books, iPad, folders, notebooks, etc. Then I remove any lose papers or trash I accumulated as well as my lunch containers and water bottle. That way each day I carry the bare minimum and my bag stays clean. As far as my clothes and things at my mom's house, I narrowed it down to things I want to have in my future, permanent, home. (Sentimental items, things for future children). I also have some clothes there just in case (she's out of state). As far as your sorting, I think bringing everything to your parents' is a great idea. Do the clothes there, then bring your keepers all back to the dorm. Sort and store the keepers, and set aside the clothes you want to go back to your parents'. (Maybe put them in your car's trunk if you have a car?) and then go from there! Best of luck

  • Colin Krajcik

    I recently retired from municipal water treatment. Being there made me aware of the water problems on reserves and other Indigenous communities. Disgusting is a good word. That led me to do some other looking around. 'Children of the Broken Treaty' is a good place to start, and then there are recent books by Indigenous writers. On the water issue, Nestlé just outbid a municipality for a new well. Now the municipality has to try to figure out what's next. Nestlé is paying the princely sum of less than $4 per million litres. If I was in charge, Nestlé and others would have to build and donate water treatment plants in undeserved communities, pay commercial rates, and be allowed about the same water consumption as the municipal consumption. If they can't figure out how to make a profit under those conditions, then too bad.

  • Katheryn Stark

    We have three kids under 4yo, so your experience rings true. We have found that some simple toys and books help keep the kids occupied during Mass, as does having access to a simple snack (Cheerios) and water. As they get older, the music gets their attention, and they begin to recognize the common prayers and songs. (My three year old had a recent phase where he'd bust out with the Agnus Dei in the grocery store ...) If possible, try to sit near other parents with small children. At our usual Mass, there's a nice critical mass of families who sit in one side -- no one's going to worry about fussy kids, the little ones enjoy seeing each other, and the parents look out for wayward toys, bottles, etc. Since my kids tend to glom on to my wife during Mass, she's always asking me to recap the homily afterwards.

  • Everett Goodwin

    I agree with the backpack idea. The stuffed animals are a great idea for patients of all ages. I sell cancer awareness products for all types of cancer and I also sell Scentsy. I sell it to help raise money for cancer research and also to send Buddies (stuffed animals with a scent pack inside to make it smell) to children fighting cancer. I add a French Lavender scent pack to them (comes with the buddy) to help calm & soothe them during treatments. Might be a great gift idea for your mom! There are different buddies to choose from. Good luck to your mom. Just supporting her & her wishes is helpful. Sometimes my mom wanted company & sometimes she wanted to go alone. We had a chemo bag & I kept water, her buddy, books/magazines, a journal, snacks, etc in it. It was also a great place to keep paperwork and her appointment book, etc.

  • Vallie Cremin

    1. I wanted to get out 3k today, but I've only managed 2k. I'll try to get the last bit done after work tonight. 2. I'm loving the ideas for my first series, so I'm hoping that'll motivate me to get them done fairly quickly before a shiny new idea comes and distracts me. And the waking up early went well until my stomach started growling for breakfast and I got distracted after that :P I think I'll leave a poptart and bottle of water on my desk for tomorrow to try and keep that from happening again. 3. I loved the Boxcar Children and Babysitter club books in elementary school. Then Harry Potter and Unicorn Chronicles in middle school. Anime took over my life in highschool, so no real books then other than keeping up with Harry Potter XD

  • Isidro Kunde

    Hello! Walk my dogs for as long as time permits. Suffer my children :-) Work - it gets in the way of other things!! Watch TV Now that Spring is here I will be in the garden trying not to kill things. Play cricket - or at least I will be in April. For now I have to content myself with indoor nets. Visit SD and read posts Read books Cook. I seriously love cooking. Try to finish my Phd on the many benefits drinking litres of tap water rather than Rioja :) Rinse and repeat.

  • Melba Wintheiser

    >To be educated is great. Learning is wonderful. Schools teach virtually nothing; children literally, literally learn more from reading a couple books a year and a few hours of basic math instruction from their parents, novices at math and at teaching math, than they do in public schools. I know from experience, as I went to fairly high-end public schools from K-8 and private schools thereafter, and the private schools, despite costing 40k/yr more, are not much better. Despite our extreme, insane ideological difference, we seem to agree 100% on this. >Liberals push for evolution to be taught because it's the only viable replacement for the Christian creator god, which is fine. By all means let scientific theory replace theistic mysticism. The problem is that liberals *don't* push for *all* of evolution to be taught; they don't dare touch anything actually written by Charles Darwin with a ten-foot pole because it is horrifyingly politically incorrect, and they don't teach natural selection, because to teach natural selection would imply that the races didn't magically stop evolving 120kya with the divergence of SS Africans and Eurasians, nor 65kya with the divergence of the White man and the Oriental, nor is race skin-deep, and especially that humans didn't stop evolving above the neck. Republicans and conservatives push for creationism, liberals push for evolution even if they might leave a few sensitive areas aside. Though we seem to disagree in the extent in which ethnicity matters. There are massive cultural, economic and social differences between people of different ethnicities. Even if genetics plays a part, it certainly is only a small part of the picture. To say that race is irrelevant might be a bit exaggerated, but is certainly far, far closer to the truth than ignoring environmental factors and making it all about genetics. > "At some future period, not very distant as measured by centuries, the civilised races of man will almost certainly exterminate and replace throughout the world the savage races. At the same time the anthropomorphous apes, as Professor Schaaffhausen has remarked, will no doubt be exterminated. The break will then be rendered wider, for it will intervene between man in a more civilised state as we may hope, than the Caucasian and some ape as low as a baboon, instead of as at present between the negro or Australian and the gorilla." — Charles Darwin, *The Descent of Man*. People back then didn't know of the potential of those people. Obama for example, despite being black, got really far and is no less competent than most politicians. Same with many other black people. Even if you considered that the average black will be doing worse than the average white even given the exact same environment, you bet that the best blacks are definitely ahead of the worst whites. >If humans were created, we are distinct from animals, were not produced by the great grinding gears of evolution, and thus are not subject to its laws. If humans evolved, we are merely a higher form of ape which is a higher form of mammal which is a higher form of tetrapod which is a higher form of...(etc.) and our "values" are entirely rooted in evolution, which evolution is natural selection, which natural selection is survival (procreation) of the fittest. "Be fruitful and multiply." Sure. But you're not a gene, you're a brain which was created through evolution. Evolution is your (our) creator, but the creation can rebel against its creation. If evolution gave us a certain set of emotions, and those don't completely match up with our desire to have children, why bother? Would you rather spend money in a fancier car or a nicer home or would you rather overwork yourself, donate to as many sperm banks as you can, and have thousands of children? Who needs a family? (according to evolution) Two or three kids are nothing compared with a thousand! >Woman -> womb man. We agree then (I think, not sure). But then why do you think ~~wives~~ womb husbands should obey their husbands, instead of being a kinda balanced relationship? Also, do you expect them to be pregnant at all times? >This varies between races. Stable families and inviolate monogamy are good for the health and well-being of all races, but the genetic inborn tendency to monogamy is highest in Whites, and then afterwards in descending order, NE Asians, Arabs, Africans. Most African groups have virtually no evolutionary experience with monogamy, though they probably benefit the most from it relative to the social catasrophe produced by their uninhibited mating patterns. I mean, I'm not a sociologist, but people have far more children the poorer the country is. Ask your grandparents, you bet they had way way more children than you or your cousins. Subsaharian countries are just really, really poor, middle ages poor in some extreme cases. People had kids like rabbits back then, even in Europe. >Women can do many things men can do, though they cannot do male-specialty tasks as well as men can do male-specialty tasks in the same way that men cannot do female-specialty tasks as well as females can do female-specialty tasks, such as childbearing (at all), nursing (at all), and nurturing young children. Men can be great fathers. Sure men might have a slightly less appropriate hormonal profile, just like women have it harder if they wanted to be soldiers or police officers or something. However that doesn't make any job (other than highly physical ones) to be much more easily done by men than women nor viceversa! We're talking tiny differences here! >Wife goggles. The husband forever sees his wife as he did the first time they fucked. If they fucked at 17, he forever sees her as prime-time 17 despite being 30 or 40 or 50. If they fucked at 30 or 35, he forever sees her as washed-up worn-out 30 or 35 no matter what age thereafter. What about old men who marry old women? >Sluts provide men with little paternity assurance. Paternity assurance is the confidence that a man's children are actually his children. Men do not invest resources into children that they know are not theirs, and they invest less in children that they are less confident are theirs. We have something called a "paternity test". If a man cares little about that, then it doesn't matter, if a man cares a lot, then it will be done and so the woman will have no reason to pretend. There's also stuff such as condoms, anti-conceptive pills and IUDs. What you say made sense a century ago or so, but nowadays technology has made being a "slut" to be harmless! >High-investment societies look like the societies of White people at any time from the birth of the White race 8kya to the 1960s (and we've been declining precipitously since); low-investment societies look like Africa at any time within the last 120k years. Oh, no, it's the other way around. Poverty --> Many children --> Low investment --> Poverty. European societies were lucky in many ways, for example a temperate climate, plenty of trade partners, lots of foreign tech (many of which came from the arabs and chinese, which were the most advanced in the world at the time!) and many other circumstances. So once they made the leap from pre-industrial to industrial, people stopped starving as often and dying from epidemics and parents decreased the amount of children they had, increasing their investment in them. Almost everything you blame on race has a pretty fascinating historical explanation! >Sounds exactly like us, today. The main problem with the USSR was that it was born as a democratic regime born of the broken bodies of the Romanov children. Weimar came by similar circumstance, though by blind luck things didn't spiral quite so out of hand in Germany. Germany's government exploited their country to wage war to fuel their nationalistic desires, the USSR government exploited their country for the same reason. In the meantime of course they got plenty of riches and stuff, which came from taxes obviously. Anyway, US politicians are well-paid, but not to the point where a significant part of the budget is currently paying top politicians. The president earns 400k, that's a joke. The owner of a medium-sized business can earn that much, or the CEO of a large corporation. They're greedy to an extent, but they're not looting the country, they're just moving money around and hoping they can stay in office to get paid. >Africans are poor in every country. They're poor in every country in Africa, despite the continent of Africa being a far richer continent than any part of Europe or Asia. They're poor in America. They're poor in South Africa, which until they took over was a well-run, First World country. They're poor in South America. All blacks are so because they come from countries with a lot of sun, and developing a civilization in the middle of the sun is nearly impossible. I mean Egyptians did it sure (they had the Nile and great flood plains though), but most of Africa is pretty screwed climate wise. So no surprise blacks are poor. However you can't assume that on top of that they managed to evolve to stay poor, you can only be certain that they're poor for environmental reasons. >In contrast, Jews are rich everywhere, despite ghettos and shtetls and all the shit they've been through. Maybe there's a difference. Maybe that difference is the average IQ of Africa: 70, vs. the average IQ of Jews: 112. Maybe the difference is that africans have had it insanely tough while jews have pretty much being selected out. That doesn't necessarily mean that the jews are much smarter nor anything though, it has a lot to do with culture, maybe all of it. >See Israel, created by America in 1917. If America wants to carve out a country for an ethnic group from a region inhabited by Arabs or Africans (or any other race besides the Russians or the Chinese), it can do so with the swipe of a pen. Jews came there voluntarily.

  • Myrl Abshire

    > STEPHEN CURRY THOUGHT it was still possible to get away from being Stephen Curry. This was over the summer, a month or so after Curry’s Golden State Warriors had suffered a painful Game 7 loss to LeBron James and Cleveland in the NBA Finals. Curry and his wife, Ayesha, decided to celebrate their fifth wedding anniversary with a trip to the South of France. St. Tropez. The plan seemed perfect. Come on—who was going to care about Steph Curry in St. Tropez? “We thought it was going to be really, really, really low key,” Curry says. “Then we get to the hotel, and the next thing you know, there’s an article that night: ‘The Currys’ Vacation’.” Curry smiles, part amazed, part rueful. This has been his reality for a few years now, ever since the undersize point guard from Davidson College metamorphosed into one of the most electric basketball players ever, a virtuoso shooter and highlight machine changing the boundaries of his sport. Here, sitting in his black Under Armour signature sweats at the Warriors’ practice facility in Oakland, California, Curry blends in. Stepping outside, however, can provoke a fuss. It can mean strangers running up to Curry with iPhones, begging him to hop on FaceTime with other strangers. Curry’s 4-year-old daughter, Riley—well-known from her adorable appearances at her dad’s postgame press conferences—now does surveillance on family outings. “Riley’s at the point where she’ll point out when people are trying to sneak pictures,” Curry says. Curry doesn’t sound jaded or unappreciative about his fame and what it has brought him. He exudes none of that celebrity/athlete world-weariness that makes the rest of us want to break out a tiny violin. The 28-year-old knows that almost anybody on the planet would love to switch places with him. “I understand,” he says. “We play a game. Our fans love it.” It’s more of a riddle to Curry: How does he maintain the semblance of an ordinary life in the middle of an extraordinary one? After all, ordinariness is part of Curry’s appeal. Basketball stars often appear otherworldly, as if drawn for comic books. But at 6 foot 3 and “180 pounds soaking wet,” as his new Under Armour commercial says, Curry is a superhero stuck inside a mortal’s body, a back-to-back league MVP who would not stand out in line at an airport Starbucks . Big-time colleges did not recruit him; NBA teams worried he didn’t have the muscle to evolve into a top player. Curry’s success among the NBA giants is a beacon to anyone who’s been discouraged from chasing a dream. “His excellence doesn’t come from being physically overpowering, but from his special skills,” says NBA commissioner Adam Silver. “Whether those skills are shooting or ball handling, there’s a sense, especially for kids, that those are things they can excel at as well.” Off the court, Curry seems intent on maintaining normalcy. It’s hard not to be charmed by Curry’s superdad life with Riley, 1-year-old daughter Ryan and Ayesha, a Nigella Lawson in the making who just launched a Food Network TV show called Ayesha’s Homemade and whose first cookbook, A Seasoned Life, became a bestseller. Faith (Curry is a devout Christian) is a huge part of his identity. He comes from NBA roots—his father, Dell, played 16 seasons in the league, and Steph and his brother, Seth, spent their childhoods in locker rooms and practice courts. Instead of entitlement, that background seems to have cultivated a level-headed self-awareness about the profession. “Steph’s as grounded as anybody I know—superstar or not,” says Curry’s coach, Steve Kerr, who played with Michael Jordan and Tim Duncan over the course of his career. “He just has a great foundation of values and a humility off the court. That wouldn’t seem to jibe with his incredible confidence on the court, but it’s a great combination.” And then there are the Steph Curry Moments. Pretty much everyone has a Steph Curry Moment. Maybe you were lucky enough to experience your Steph Curry Moment live, in person. More likely, you saw it on television or via a clip on social media. Maybe it came in a text message from a friend with a link and four simple words: You gotta see this. You saw it, and you couldn’t believe it. Steph Curry—and for the last time, it’s pronounced Steff not Steve, and Steffin not Steven or Steff-ON (like the old Saturday Night Live character)—was doing things that nobody had done in basketball before. Here was a relatively small-bodied player who was stretching the limits of a big person’s game, redefining its flow and knocking down decades-old beliefs about scoring and decision making. Dear Lord, he’s not going to shoot it from there. Oh, he’s going to shoot it from there. (Swish.) A good deal of credit belongs to the Warriors, an unselfish club that preaches ball movement and plays with a relentless, fluid style that is almost giddy to watch. Curry is the straw stirring at the center, always moving, always a threat to score, no matter the distance from the hoop. “Every time he has the ball, you can’t turn your head away because you think he’s going to do something that has never been done before,” says Silver. He just crossed half court. No, he’s not. Yes, he is. (Swish.) Curry isn’t simply a basketball phenomenon. Sometime in the middle of last season, during which the Warriors won a league-record 73 regular-season games, Curry and his team became the greatest show in sports, drawing in viewers who’d abandoned basketball years ago or had never watched at all. Children in particular piled on the bandwagon. I live nearly 3,000 miles from Oakland, in Brooklyn, New York, where there are more Curry jerseys on neighborhood kids than Knicks or Nets shirts. (Curry has led the NBA in merchandise sales for the past two seasons.) Boys, girls, it doesn’t matter. It’s as if Star Wars and Frozen joined up and became a basketball player. It reached a point where Warriors fans started showing up to games early, just to watch Curry take his practice warm-up shots, as if he were Bruce Springsteen doing a sound check. The ritual amuses but mystifies Curry. “It’s confusing because it’s just my routine, it’s what I do every day,” he says. He tries to focus on his practice and not get swept up in the mania, fearful of getting “lost in that scene.” Curry knows that everything the fans love had been borne in solitude, through practice, repetition, hard work. An hour before, I’d watched Curry work with some Warriors assistant coaches on his shot, rotating around the three-point line in a drill familiar to anyone who’s played basketball even at the lowest level. Again and again, he went through the routine. It occurred to me that this might be like watching Mozart noodle around on the piano. The person shooting jump shots might be better than anyone who’s ever done it. Swish. Swish. Swish. Swish. Swish. On and on it went, for close to an hour. I ask Curry if he ever gets bored of the repetition. “I don’t ever get tired of shooting,” he says. “I might not have as much energy based on what day it is, but I love challenging myself. That’s part of the grind. That’s what separates the guys who are one or two years in the league from the Kevin Garnetts and Kobe Bryants. They might not like it, but they know they have to do it, and they attack it as hard as they would in a game.” It’s this underdog mind-set that attracted Curry, once a Nike athlete, to Under Armour, the Maryland-based apparel company, which was looking to build a new line of basketball footwear. Under Armour had successfully penetrated a sportswear market long dominated by Nike and Adidas, and in Curry, it felt it had found a spiritual match, a player repeatedly told he’d never break through at the highest level. “As soon as we sat down with Steph and his family, I think everyone in the room was thinking: ‘This is the kind of athlete, the kind of person you want to be associated and in business with,’ ” says Kris Stone, who heads marketing for Under Armour’s basketball division. Curry gave Under Armour an immediate splash in the sport, though there have been a few hiccups. At the height of the playoffs last year, a new shoe release, the Chef Currys, became the subject of a rowdy social-media roast, with critics ridiculing the simple white shoes as footwear for suburban soccer dads, or worse: Air Jordans for nurses. Minivans for the feet. Early Bird Specials. Larry David 2 Lows. “All of a sudden it was just a barnstorm of jokes,” Curry says. “It was pretty creative, all the different names they had for the shoes. I got a good laugh out of that.” The Great Steph Curry Shoe Roast also served as a reminder that Curry is a superstar of the digital era. LeBron James came into the league years before Instagram and Twitter were things, but Curry’s ascension has paralleled social media’s rise; when we spoke, Curry had 27.5 million combined followers on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. The same digital audience that poked fun at Curry’s shoes has championed his greatness, almost evangelically, through bite-size clips of his on-court brilliance. “It’s as if he’s ready made for social media,” says Adam Silver.

  • Cindy Wolff

    >Better predictor - no. If a method of inquiry is not a better predictor of human phenomenon then it is not demonstrably more capable of giving us information about human reality. >I am just saying that the extreme variability in their studies lead them from extreme quantitative end and attempting to follow the large sample idea but in the end have shaped up many books like the one I mentioned because they give a better understanding of what actually happens to a person. If your methodology is going to be "You're wrong in talking about the importance of sample size, because this book with a small sample gives us a better understanding then some other studies with large sample sizes." Then I feel pretty justified in rejecting this argument. You neither really define in operational terms what this "better understanding" may mean nor do you take into account the fact that studies and works can be methodologically inferior yet still yield true results and something can be methodologically optimal and yield bad results. Even broken clocks can be right twice a day as they say. I am not saying this type of book is bad research, because I haven’t read it, but you can’t just use the argument you just used and then claim you’ve refuted something. Ironically, this is a textbook example of why you may need a bigger randomized sample of different works with different methodologies to answer the question of who is better. >My main point is that if you spend enough time with one person you understand a lot more than the tiny amount of time you have to spend if you are going for a n of over a few hundred. You know more about the person, but not necessarily the relevant general population. Let's take schizophrenia once again; schizophrenics have a very different combination of symptoms from individual to individual. If you intend to spend your time with 1 person , as you say, you may come out of it thinking schizophrenia means you have visual hallucinations.[When in fact only a minority do] (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2660156/). More probable, you may encounter a person with no visual hallucinations and assume that no schizophrenics have hallucinations of this sort which is also false. You also keep acting like I only talked about sample size in my first post. I didn't. I also mentioned the obvious qualitative limitations with studying artists which you have never addressed. > Depth of data is important, and often getting more of the same from very different people should ring alarm bells that it’s either a 3rd variable leading to that (social desirability) The most probable and conservative hypothesis would be simply that while people may differ in many ways, they simply do not differ in the ways relevant to the task at hand. Groups seen in everyday life, for instance, aren’t homogeneous and yet share characteristics which make us classify them as a group. This argument also overlooks all the studies using implicit measures not known to the participant, the studies that don't use self-reports, the studies where we precisely study socially undesirable traits,the general anonymity of the process, the fact that psychometric tools are checked for reliability and validity, the fact that if you want to claim that the effect of social desirability is big enough to invalidate most of our data then it is your job to respond to this burden of proof providing data and , most importantly, the fact that, as I said in my initial post, artists do change their work according to what is perceived as palatable (social desirable) to an audience so it is hardly an argument in favor of OP's point that art is more capable of answering questions on humans than science if this flaw is also there. >the questions you ask has an answer that describes how the world should be in a discursive manner which is a major issue most psychology and science doesn't deal with I don't understand what you even mean there. Yes, our descriptions have linguistic ( what I assume you mean by discursive) limitations. This is true for all fields scientific or not and art analysis wouldn't escape it. >You need to collect data on everything else to describe the thing Following your logic nothing can ever be proven to be causal, because there will always some minute gap in our knowledge regarding it. Can I really know my chair permits me to be seated? Well, I don't know about the specifics of its molecular structure and particles so I better remain agnostic about it. If your study has been replicated by the people who tried to evaluate it ,that it shows the apparition of a given response after the introduction of an independent variable the subjects are exposed to, if the relation is significant, if we have no evidence of other variables that may have caused what we saw and that the same effect hasn't been observed in a control group then the probability that all those different people spontaneously just up and decided to have this response with the independent variable playing no causal role is inherently low and it just becomes Occam’s Razor to assume that the variable likely plays causal role and not some weird unknown unjustified variable. Once again, like with all your arguments, you never demonstrate how art analysis fairs better. > Sample Size is arbitrary - most power measures for studies are based on teh studies before them and if you follow it back far enough it is usually arbitrary in the beginning. I was referring to the margin of error and it is a statistical fact that your sample size affects your margin of error and your confidence interval. Do you seriously think that you can have a sample of 3 people and represent a population of 500? No, for any trait you may want to observe you’ll only be able to get a 33% proportion, a 66% proportion, a 100 % proportion or a 0% proportion. Nothing in between. To be honest, I am not the most well versed in regards to statistical power, but analysis of science and it's methodology will depend on prior studies obviously since they are what is being studied and even if arbitrary conventions (which you haven’t specified) exist that doesn't mean that statistical power doesn't discriminate effectively between studies with high and low chance of a type 2 error. Now maybe you can point me to the peer-reviewed studies which you claim invalidate my concerns. >We assume that small periods of time if refined enough will be enough to understand extremely complex things - while I hesitate to say 'this cannot be the case its unintuitive' it seem that to understand more people attitudes, cognitive patterns, traits and behaviours it would always be better to follow them for extremely long period It depends on what you are studying and longitudinal studies follow people for long periods of time. >Then the variance and contextual changing in those things become massively apparent - even if we start with a survey we end up finding out that answer was more how they thought they should answer that day than how they act in general There are tons of psychometric tools and questionnaires that have proven test-retest reliability (IQ,MMPI and others). But, fine, why don’t you link me to this peer-reviewed work. >the limitations of focusing on getting small amounts of data from more and more people assumes that things that affect them are not increasing in variance which they always are, and saying that they cancel out or it becomes so varied is okay as long as you get a sample that is varied but most of the time they are early 20s mostly female uni students that are of the country you live in. The people you named can still vary in relevant ways relative to what is studied. For instance, just because you are American, a female, in your 20s, a Westerner and studying psychology doesn't mean you have the same IQ, personality traits, life experiences, sexual orientation, etc. As I said, before a limited variation in your sample doesn't go away with art. Furthermore, I don't think I should need to tell you that a lot of psychological research is done on people which aren't undergrads like studies on brain damage, children and clinical populations. > The idea that people take in more and more data as they live, as they do things - its not really a helpful way of analysing what people do every day, its more about the audiences and the stable contingencies of their behaviour - often acting on them for them to fail as well because people don't take on the new data very well if the audience and context don't change obviously. First, forgive my snark and sarcasm, but yea it’s not like we have a whole field of cognitive psychology which works on processes like encoding sensory information and memory needed for problem solving, language and object discrimination which are all processes needed in everyday life. Secondly, working with contingencies and encoding data aren’t mutually exclusive, actually you’ll have a hard time recognising contingencies without gathering any data. Thirdly, that is not what scientism means because saying people constantly make scientific conclusions isn’t saying that they *only* make scientific conclusions. Fourthly, I was responding to OP’s claim that we are more acquainted with art than with science and you do nothing to support this idea. Your whole shtick throughout this exchange seems to be more built on beating on psychology than on establishing why those flaws wouldn’t be there when analysing art. In the rare instances, where you talk about art it is not “just a little of base”, as you say, it is in a way that is explicitly contradictory to OP’s view of art analysis as opposed to science. As I said before, you can analyse art and do science, but that is not what I am arguing against. To be honest, I am tired , I think we should end it here.

  • Nickolas Baumbach

    Let's just nutshell all of these posts: Ralph: Me fail English? That’s unpossible. Lionel Hutz: This is the greatest case of false advertising I’ve seen since I sued the movie “The Never Ending Story.” Sideshow Bob: No children have ever meddled with the Republican Party and lived to tell about it. Troy McClure: Don’t kid yourself, Jimmy. If a cow ever got the chance, he’d eat you and everyone you care about! Comic Book Guy: The Internet King? I wonder if he could provide faster nudity… Homer: Oh, so they have Internet on computers now! Ned Flanders: I’ve done everything the Bible says — even the stuff that contradicts the other stuff! Comic Book Guy: Your questions have become more redundant and annoying than the last three “Highlander” movies. Chief Wiggum: Uh, no, you got the wrong number. This is 9-1…2. Sideshow Bob: I’ll be back. You can’t keep the Democrats out of the White House forever, and when they get in, I’m back on the streets, with all my criminal buddies. Homer: When I held that gun in my hand, I felt a surge of power…like God must feel when he’s holding a gun. Nelson: Dad didn’t leave… When he comes back from the store, he’s going to wave those pop-tarts right in your face! Milhouse: Remember the time he ate my goldfish? And you lied and said I never had goldfish. Then why did I have the bowl Bart? Why did I have the bowl? Lionel Hutz: Well, he’s kind of had it in for me ever since I accidentally ran over his dog. Actually, replace “accidentally” with “repeatedly” and replace “dog” with “son.” Comic Book Guy: Last night’s “Itchy and Scratchy Show” was, without a doubt, the worst episode ever. Rest assured, I was on the Internet within minutes, registering my disgust throughout the world. Homer: I’m normally not a praying man, but if you’re up there, please save me, Superman. Homer: Save me, Jeebus. Mayor Quimby: I stand by my racial slur. Comic Book Guy: Oh, loneliness and cheeseburgers are a dangerous mix. Homer: You don’t like your job, you don’t strike. You go in every day and do it really half-assed. That’s the American way. Chief Wiggum: Fat Tony is a cancer on this fair city! He is the cancer and I am the…uh…what cures cancer? Homer: Bart, with $10,000 we’d be millionaires! We could buy all kinds of useful things like…love! Homer: Fame was like a drug. But what was even more like a drug were the drugs. Homer: Books are useless! I only ever read one book, “To Kill A Mockingbird,” and it gave me absolutely no insight on how to kill mockingbirds! Sure it taught me not to judge a man by the color of his skin…but what good does that do me? Chief Wiggum: Can’t you people take the law into your own hands? I mean, we can’t be policing the entire city! Homer: Weaseling out of things is important to learn. It’s what separates us from the animals…except the weasel. Reverend Lovejoy: Marge, just about everything’s a sin. [holds up a Bible] Y’ever sat down and read this thing? Technically we’re not supposed to go to the bathroom. Homer: You know, the one with all the well meaning rules that don’t work out in real life, uh, Christianity. Homer: Kids, you tried your best and you failed miserably. The lesson is, never try. Homer: Here’s to alcohol, the cause of — and solution to — all life’s problems. Homer: When will I learn? The answers to life’s problems aren’t at the bottom of a bottle, they’re on TV! Chief Wiggum: I hope this has taught you kids a lesson: kids never learn. Homer: How is education supposed to make me feel smarter? Besides, every time I learn something new, it pushes some old stuff out of my brain. Remember when I took that home winemaking course, and I forgot how to drive? Homer: Homer no function beer well without. Duffman: Duffman can’t breathe! OH NO! Grandpa Simpson: Dear Mr. President, there are too many states nowadays. Please, eliminate three. P.S. I am not a crackpot. Homer: Old people don’t need companionship. They need to be isolated and studied so it can be determined what nutrients they have that might be extracted for our personal use. Troy McClure: Hi. I’m Troy McClure. You may remember me from such self-help tapes as “Smoke Yourself Thin” and “Get Some Confidence, Stupid!” Homer: A woman is a lot like a refrigerator. Six feet tall, 300 pounds…it makes ice. Homer: Son, a woman is like a beer. They smell good, they look good, you’d step over your own mother just to get one! But you can’t stop at one. You wanna drink another woman! Homer: Facts are meaningless. You could use facts to prove anything that’s even remotely true! Mr. Burns: I’ll keep it short and sweet — Family. Religion. Friendship. These are the three demons you must slay if you wish to succeed in business. Kent Brockman: …And the fluffy kitten played with that ball of string all through the night. On a lighter note, a Kwik-E-Mart clerk was brutally murdered last night. Ralph: Mrs. Krabappel and Principal Skinner were in the closet making babies and I saw one of the babies and then the baby looked at me. Apu: Please do not offer my god a peanut. Homer: You don’t win friends with salad. Mr. Burns: I don’t like being outdoors, Smithers. For one thing, there’s too many fat children. Sideshow Bob: Attempted murder? Now honestly, what is that? Do they give a Nobel Prize for attempted chemistry? Chief Wiggum: They only come out in the night. Or in this case, the day. Mr. Burns: Whoa, slow down there, maestro. There’s a New Mexico? Homer: He didn’t give you gay, did he? Did he?! Comic Book Guy: But, Aquaman, you cannot marry a woman without gills. You’re from two different worlds… Oh, I’ve wasted my life. Homer: Marge, it takes two to lie. One to lie and one to listen. Superintendent Chalmers: I’ve had it with this school, Skinner. Low test scores, class after class of ugly, ugly children… Mr. Burns: What good is money if it can’t inspire terror in your fellow man? Homer: Oh, everything looks bad if you remember it. Ralph:Slow down, Bart! My legs don’t know how to be as long as yours. Homer: Donuts. Is there anything they can’t do? Homer: In this house, we obey the laws of thermodynamics! Apu: Yes! I am a citizen! Now which way to the welfare office? I’m kidding, I’m kidding. I work, I work. Milhouse: We started out like Romeo and Juliet, but it ended up in tragedy. Mr. Burns: A lifetime of working with nuclear power has left me with a healthy green glow…and left me as impotent as a Nevada boxing commissioner. Homer: Kids, kids. I’m not going to die. That only happens to bad people. Milhouse: Look out, Itchy! He’s Irish! Homer: I’m going to the back seat of my car, with the woman I love, and I won’t be back for ten minutes! Smithers: I’m allergic to bee stings. They cause me to, uh, die. Barney: Aaah! Natural light! Get it off me! Get it off me! Principal Skinner: That’s why I love elementary school, Edna. The children believe anything you tell them. Sideshow Bob: Your guilty consciences may make you vote Democratic, but secretly you all yearn for a Republican president to lower taxes, brutalize criminals, and rule you like a king! Barney: Jesus must be spinning in his grave! Superintendent Chalmers: “Thank the Lord”? That sounded like a prayer. A prayer in a public school. God has no place within these walls, just like facts don’t have a place within an organized religion. Mr. Burns: [answering the phone] Ahoy hoy? Comic Book Guy: Oh, a sarcasm detector. Oh, that’s a really useful invention! Marge: Our differences are only skin deep, but our sames go down to the bone. Homer: What’s the point of going out? We’re just going to wind up back here anyway. Marge: Get ready, skanks! It’s time for the truth train! Bill Gates: I didn’t get rich by signing checks. Principal Skinner: Fire can be our friend; whether it’s toasting marshmallows or raining down on Charlie. Homer: Oh, I’m in no condition to drive. Wait a minute. I don’t have to listen to myself. I’m drunk. Homer: And here I am using my own lungs like a sucker. Comic Book Guy: Human contact: the final frontier. Homer: I hope I didn’t brain my damage. Krusty the Clown: And now, in the spirit of the season: start shopping. And for every dollar of Krusty merchandise you buy, I will be nice to a sick kid. For legal purposes, sick kids may include hookers with a cold. Homer: I’m a Spalding Gray in a Rick Dees world. Dr. Nick: Inflammable means flammable? What a country. Homer: Beer. Now there’s a temporary solution. Comic Book Guy: Stan Lee never left. I’m afraid his mind is no longer in mint condition. Nelson: Shoplifting is a victimless crime. Like punching someone in the dark. Milhouse: I can’t go to juvie. They use guys like me as currency. Homer: Son, when you participate in sporting events, it’s not whether you win or lose: it’s how drunk you get. Homer: I like my beer cold, my TV loud and my homosexuals flaming. Homer: Marge, you being a cop makes you the man! Which makes me the woman — and I have no interest in that, besides occasionally wearing the underwear, which as we discussed, is strictly a comfort thing. Bart: I didn’t think it was physically possible, but this both sucks and blows. Homer: How could you?! Haven’t you learned anything from that guy who gives those sermons at church? Captain Whatshisname? We live in a society of laws! Why do you think I took you to all those Police Academy movies? For fun? Well, I didn’t hear anybody laughing, did you? Except at that guy who made sound effects. Makes sound effects and laughs. Where was I? Oh yeah! Stay out of my booze! Homer: Lisa, vampires are make-believe, like elves, gremlins, and Eskimos. Thanks Gold Delivery Person; that was very kind of you.

  • Alberta Bahringer

    Pages 9-12 9 Nintendo Co., Ltd The 77 Period ( 2017 Year 3 Monthly period ) Management policy briefing session / The 3 Quarterly financial results briefing materials Smart device business Next, it is a smart device business. Smart Device Business Policy Nintendo IP Maximizing the population touching Monetization of the Smart Device Business alone Synergy with game special purpose machine business 1 2 3 Optimized for smart devices Deliver gaming experience with sufficient quality First of all, it will be a confirmation of what we are describing from a long time ago However, in our smart device business this 3 Points as policy Doing. Using smart devices, Nintendo IP Aiming to maximize the population that touches the intellectual property (intellectual property) I will. Monetize smart device business alone It is assumed. Further synergy with the dedicated game machine business Create a fruit, leading to the maximization of the entire Nintendo business I think that I want to. Also, titles for smart devices are smart Device optimized gaming experience, enough qualities We were telling you that we would like to deliver with Te. 7800 Ten thousand downloads Super Mario Run • Play with one hand, New Mario • Developing country of game specialized machine business Exceeds 151 Delivery to the country Source: Nintendo ( IOS Version Only, as of today) Based on this idea, last year 12 Moon, you can play with one hand Mario " Super Mario Run " , IPhone , IPad Toward We delivered it to you. Our company is a game specialized machine business In countries and regions where products and services are deployed. We can not deliver to a wide range of people all over the world. did. From the start of distribution Four Over the whole world in days 4000 Ten thousand downloads To break through, App Store Being the fastest start I have already told you in the news release It was. Even after that I steadily increased the number of downloads, and today In point 7800 Thousands of downloads are done. Continue to decompress download count The world purchase rate also tends to rise As a "classic application" that you can play with confidence Aim for broad acceptance Super Mario Run " Supe R Mario Run " Download it for free And I was playing part of the 3 modes free of charge You can do it. after that, 1200 I paid yen If you do not worry about additional charges after that, all elements You can enjoy. Download this title The number continues to grow from the start of distribution. One side With respect to the cumulative number of downloads from the start of distribution Ten Nintendo Co., Ltd The 77 Period ( 2017 Year 3 Monthly period ) Management policy briefing session / The 3 Quarterly financial results briefing materials Purchase ", that is, payment for consideration Despite the increase in population, the proportion of customers we received I am slowly rising. Responding to the feedback of customers who were "purchasing the world" I feel. " Super Mario Run " Children Including the status as a "classic app" that you can play with confidence I'd like to build, so already in the world Customers who purchased or downloaded For those customers who have not yet purchased the world, at the end Efforts that you can play for a long time and new Dow We will increase the proportion of customers who purchase the world I will add hands in the game so that it will be. ※ The amount of money for world purchase varies depending on the delivery country Become. Super Mario Run •