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Monday musings. Couple of things that I have thought about recently....

2020.08.10 14:59 maby66 Monday musings. Couple of things that I have thought about recently....

I'd like to try and make this not a shit fest/bitchy post, but actually discuss some of the stuff in WoTC. I'm not sure how that's going to work out, as I feel a lot of people are getting worked up about things that although they are annoying, are cosmetic/temporary and will be gone by and by. I'm more interested in some of the deeper game direction/experience stuff as I've been playing for over 6 years and feel that gives me a level of understanding/investment to make a call on things that are happening just now...
1) Gameplay/player intelligence - Cross play has been great for server populations and game queues, and I don't subscribe to the "xbox are all shitters/playstation are all shitters theory" - whether in jest or not. What I am finding is that as a solo player the number of games I enjoy seems to have dropped off a cliff. It's been going like that for a while, and I don't think there is any one point to say that it's worse since "X" date, but how it feels at the moment is that a good 80% of games are blow outs, and it's random luck if you'll be on one end of it or the other.
I'm solidly green WN8 (at least I think I still am, haven't checked since the sites were knocked out) so I think I can understand gameplay dynamics enough to be useful/recognise what's happening. Thing is - I play for fun, not marks or mastery. I want to log on, have a few games, enjoy it. Gaming is a past time for me and quite often I'll be working it around other stuff like cooking dinner - play around, finish, back to garage while I do something else for 5/10 minutes, back in and start another round. A common response on here to people who express frustration with current gameplay standards has been to recommend to platoon up/play with similar skilled players in order to increase enjoyment levels/decrease frustration. That should be my choice not something I'm forced into doing (which is an element when it comes to the season pass - but that's another thing), having to plan gaming sessions around other peoples availability or annoying the people I'm playing with as I nip off to do stuff at the same time as my tanking. This game wasn't designed as purely platoon orientated gameplay so what does that say about the state of it if that's the seemingly only way to get back to simple enjoyment?
There's multiple things at play here which influence this to some degree or another - the age of the game, number of veteran players decreasing over time, learning curve past T4, lack of meaningful in game tuition, high tier tanks in the hands of players with less understanding of gameplay/mechanics - and I don't think there is a single answer to it. What I would say is that I don't see any indication from WGCB that this is concerning to them, and that's my problem with it - because if the game becoming less satisfying for veterans and/or new players, then player retention will drop and cross play will be a sticking plaster over reducing player numbers. Lower numbers of paying customers will have multiple impact areas in terms of investment in the game itself, while I suspect that WGCB will then look at additional ways to monetise/increase spend from the players left to try to fill the revenue gap. Is Season Pass on top of Premium the beginning of this? Are the constant stream of "free" tank events the incentives to keep players playing as long as possible, despite frustrations they may have with the gameplay - or are WGCB trying to get more spend on other premiums/re-skins while they still can?
2) Bugs/Lag - meme worthy though both of these are, it would be good to try and talk about these objectively as I think there's more to say on this. With lag (and related elements such as ghost shells and so on) server performance and gameplay experience based on it are variable for individuals. I don't think it's good enough for WGCB to write every instance off as "it's your ISP" though that can be a contributing factor. What is frustrating is WGCB's seeming insistence that their services are infallible, when we see from other parts of the puzzle that they are anything but. The number of bugs that the latest release rolled out with, and the multiple bugs (visual mostly) that haven't been fixed weeks down the line, was/is not good. I've seen some posts to the effect that many of these are minor, that delivering this service is not simple, that these will be fixed in due course and don't impact the game so much. I hear that, but my response is also that this is WGCB's job. This is literally what they are paid to do. How can you get to release a significant update, trailed for many weeks, with really obvious things like the tracker of the summerslam levels numerics glitching over the text - how can you ship that update with that still sitting there? Which makes me think that it was fully known prior to 5.0 going live, but was deemed acceptable. And it still is, as it's not been fixed.
The thing is this makes me think that bugs and issues - lag, graphical or otherwise - are not being given priority and resources for fix. Why not? Should not the user experience on a purely online, multi player only game be the highest priority, in order to encourage spend/player retention? The lack of investment in this area by WGCB compares unfavourably to many other developers/games, who have much more regular updates for hotfixes and balance/gameplay updates - Borderlands 3 for example is pretty much weekly, with balance in particular being constantly tweaked based on feedback from the community as well as analysis of the metrics.
How it feels is that bugs, gameplay and related issues are taking a significant back seat in terms of priority, with focus being put on the season pass/monetisation and revenue generation (tank sales primarily). Of course this has to be a focus, as without income the game cannot survive, but there also has to be balance. Potential customers won't stay around to buy the latest season pass/premium if the game they are playing is unsatisfactory.
3) Monetisation/Season Pass - I've paid premium for years. Not a huge buyer of gold outside of that. I've bought a fair few tanks, but I'm by no means a whale. I'm not a big fan of the season pass idea as it stands and my thoughts are as follows..
This iteration of the season pass feels like a test event - how many people will purchase, what level and so on. The base (2k gold) feels like a no brainer as IF you complete, you will receive the 2k gold back together with all the season pass rewards. All good on the surface, but my question then becomes what is the point of Premium? 24k gold (or 12k in the sale) invested to give me higher earnings in both xp and silver, in order to progress furthefaster in the game. In previous seasons/events that has been sufficient - my annual investment in premium was a sufficient entry fee paid for participation, paid back in swifter progress through the event and gaining the full rewards offered. But now, unless I make additional purchases (season pass) I'm gated from full participation/reward. This is a different model from previous events/seasons, and if it continues in it's current form I have concern.
Where WGCB have previously offered full season rewards, plus bonus rewards for premium purchasers, even incremental purchase of premium (buy a day prior to completing the event/tier that gave the premium reward tank such as the KpZ 50t) now you have no choice but to make a full season pass purchase. Layered with the tweaks to the tiers/tasks which seems to be more about grind/volume (spotting at least 1 tank in hundreds of matches, damaging 1 or more tanks in hundreds of matches) there is a swing from tasks that are assisted by having premium (pure xp based) to tasks accomplished by slog/grind/being present in a match, hundred of times. If that becomes more prevalent then what is the point of premium?
Given I've paid in advance for premium (currently sitting at 360 days) then a significant change in it's value /worth going forward is annoying. If I have no choice but to make additional purchases of gold to take part on top of what I've already invested then that's not good. If this is the way WGCB are taking the game forward, then perhaps they should consider a "combined" premium/season pass offer - and a way to convert existing subs into that, similar to how MS have worked Gold/Game Pass/Ultimate. If you want Ultimate and already have a Gold sub, you can convert the existing months left on your Gold into fewer Ultimate months - as you are gaining access to additional value.
4) Season pass ops - to go with the above, something that stuck me this weekend was around the way the ops have built/changed from previously. Some of the previous activities have been a bit simplistic/easy to complete and I've had mixed feeling about that (point 1 about high tier tanks in the hands of people with less game knowledge) but overall once I got going I always felt it was achievable. I'm not 100% on that with the current event, which given the additional cost of taking part is a concern. Weekly ops structures are coming in with longer term/grind requirements, or ones that are difficult to achieve for me personally, and the "making a point" equivalent with it's never ending escalation of xp requirement is functionally useless over time.
Platoon ops are annoying because I am a solo player, covered off earlier. Gating these means that unless I change my play/find people to play with (and even then it's not guaranteed I'll be able to achieve the op requirement) I'm going to be down multiple levels. I think we have had 2 platoon ops in the 3 weeks to date for 18 or 19 points. If that is repeated over the 8 odd weeks of the event, then potentially I'm missing out on hitting 8, 9 or 10 levels in the season that I can't make up any other way as to date I don't think we have seen any of the previous season/event weekly/one off points tasks that WG put in as bonuses.
My other concern is one that until we get to the back end of the event can't be confirmed, but given what we've seen so far has got me wondering. Will the ops in the final few weeks be pro-rata'ed for achievement in a shorter timescale? In week 3 we have 1 op with 100, 2 ops with 125 and 1 with 300 battle requirements for completion. Will WG bring those down in the final couple of weeks to allow for realistic completion? I play every day to some extent, but have still not quite got the 100 or 125 in the last seven days let alone the 300, so if we had similar requirements in the final week or two then it's highly unlikely I'd get the completions. Put that on top of the platoon only requirements and I can see myself being presented with a sunk cost decision - either miss out on finishing the season/final rewards or pay out gold for single tier skips or a season pass upgrade.
If I was playing only here and there then it's fair to make the case I haven't put the hours in and don't deserve the reward, and paying up to skip/buy out is my choice given lack of effort. But if I'm playing every day and the end point starts feeling unachievable/un-realistic then where is the incentive to take part in the next one? Current progress is 48/100 so on that run rate I should be there or thereabouts, but that's on the assumption that the ops don't keep going up in terms of grind/time sink required. Week 1 and 2 ops (other than the platoon) had less time/volume requirement than week 3 - surely that should be the other way round?
So - there you have it. Thanks for listening to my Ted Talk etc. I'd be interested in peoples thoughts who want to have a discussion about the direction that WGCB is taking the game. As much as I am not a fan of the WWE branding I am looking past that as it is a cosmetic and will change in a few weeks - though it could be to something just as visually unappealing or to subject matter that again I have no interest in - but it's not really the point of the above. I would much rather talk about the developer focus areas, the monetisation model and what it means going forwards/things that could be improved.
submitted by maby66 to WorldofTanksConsole [link] [comments]

2020.08.04 12:59 MobileVulgusaurusSex The Timeless Art of Seduction: My Modest Content List

"My List". So, Infinite Jest is amazing, it's a thousand pages though, and it's not going to do a lot for you in the seduction racket. The Stranger by Camus, philosophy is kinda my bag, but I am certain that throwing out most exi's quotes in talking a girl up will not help me. I can't tell you the none times I've attempted to throw out some witty Moby Dick quote in the club. I prefer movies for my fiction and honestly don't think you have to "read the classics" to be a well rounded man these days. So here's a simplified Seduction and seduction adjacent list I've found, actionable.
12 Rules for Life by Jordan B. Peterson (Everyone should begin here, really, I am not a fan of his politics per se, but he is intelligent and from the standpoint of analytical psych he's simply right, like completely correctly right. His ethics and philosophy debate performances are also great but this book is a modern young male oriented self help book that is a first read for anyone first entering this sub)
Anthony Robbins - Personal Power 2 (this is the Big Poppa of them all you will endlessly hear pickup coaches talk this guy up and this is the original 30 day hourish a day audio program, it's so great that when typing this I put it back on my phone to start it up again this week), Awaken the Giant Within (This is basically a condensed version of Personal Power with a bit more of the aspirational mantra speak, it's good as an audiobook listen over 90 mins or on YouTube), Get the Edge (This is like an updated buy condensed Personal Power 2 with some more recent additions but it's not going to give you the same step by step stuff that the first one here will)
Fashion - Art of Manliness blog for building an overall wardrobe, streetwear (subreddit), GQ Seasonal fashion trends articles, googling “Summer 2020” etc on google images and look at the common trends you see there.
Movies - Tao of Steve, Van Wilder; those are just a couple that popped into my head while typing.
RSD Julien - He flew too close to the sun and singed his wings, but the pickup work here is solid. He has twoish "programs" (Shift and TenGame). Start with Shift.
The Game by Neil Strauss - Yeah, it's a great history book/ introduction into the world of Pickup circa the 2000's. There's useful stuff, but only when understood in a greater context.
Venusian Arts by Mystery - It's the Mystery Method rebranded after Nick Savoy essentially stole his work and made a real company out of it as per the end of Strauss's book. Not really anything earth shatteringly different or useful out of it though. It's B grade pickup literature.
Real Social Dynamics by Tyler Durden - The OTHER guy besides Nick Savoy that turned Mystery Method into a real venture. He made a couple worthwhile products such as Blueprint Decoded and his company had it's own super conference put to video, I recommend Transformations. Tyler Durden now has a very boring YouTube channel since he has pivoted/ rebranded himself as a 21st century self help guru type, just like Mark Manson only with success and experience. I only recommend that as a YouTube subscribe random viewing thing.
Love Systems - In my opinion, it's the gold standard of Pickup as corporation in coaching and product development. Magic Bullets by Nick Savoy (Mystery Method rebranded and improved), Text and Phone Game by Braddock, Day Game by Soul, Social Circle Theory (video) and Beyond Words (video) and Guide to Online Dating by Derek Cajun (now the boss at that company I believe) , Routines Manuals. I recommend ALL of them honestly. I also recommend the Super Conference video, and The Interview Series audios. There's a lot here to digest and internalize. You could probably be considered 85%-95% knowledgable of this entire subculture based only on their products. They also have a YouTube channel I haven't looked at much. Seems like standard click bait video articles driving traffic to their products.
Fitness - Kris Gethin's 12 Week Trainer (it used to be free on bodybuildingdotcom until they became a paywall content site), Greg Plitt MFT28 (is also on bodybuildingdotcom and he's dead now because he tried to outrun a train, for real, but awesome motivational guy), BUFF Dudes (probably the nicest, most honest guys in the fitness YouTube game), Starting Strength 3rd edition (I have it, haven't read it but it's like a bible for strongman types so if that's your taste then that's your book), Swoley Bible by Dom Mazzetti (It's a joke, he's a joke, but the Brofessor is awesome and his YouTube channel (BroScienceLife) is just great and the book is great, "It's not that fuckin' hard, it's not rocket science, it's broscience, which is harder")
Nerdist Way by Chris Hardwick (I never got into it but it may appeal to some of you more than Anthony Robbins, as in some younger readers, especially gamers as he angles self help from a game you're playing of your life perspective which may be useful to some as really a lot of the concepts you'll see in self help are not that different)
Modern Romance by Aziz Ansari (along with his show Master of None and comedy specials i think they are good examples of modern honest intentioned win/ win dating advice provided in comical fashion)
Richest Man In Babylon by George Clason (this is probably the only finance book most of you will need until you get involved in the stock market, it's simple stuff and it's not glamorous or sexy or baller, because it's being responsible which is unsexy and boring)
Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl (This is basically stoicism applied in autobiography, it's inspo)
Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg (This looked good and I was planning on getting into it so I'm including it here)
So here's the thing about this list of content. It's not mostly books. It's really some books, some videos and some audio, since ya know, this isn't 1832 and we can consume more forms of data than just print nowadays. I don't do books made of paper anymore unless it's some archaic textbook i'm required to buy for school. I always see these book lists and we are all expected to champion reading Catcher In the Rye, but where's the list that says we should all listen to Kendrick Lamar's DAMN? Which I would argue is a lot more applicable in dating right now than A Confederacy of Dunces. Just because something is old does not mean it is eternal or universally applicable. Every single piece of content I have listed can be found in one corner of the internet or another. I don't generally believe that helping another man become better at socializing should be a "for profit venture". And while this is about seduction, seduction isn't just for sex or romance, it's applicable in all aspects of life which is why this content draws on all aspects of life. All this is just to make you better at operating in the social world we live in.
The Timeless Art of Seduction
submitted by MobileVulgusaurusSex to seduction [link] [comments]

2020.07.14 02:48 PhillipRayne [Fantasy World Epsilon 30-10] - 6.1 Entry, Duh

They approached Elgelica from the northeast the next day on two giant Mor’Orc warhorses and the other three in tow. It took most of the evening to retrieve them. Kay was much better than he at calming and coaxing them, so he gave the tracking to her while he mopped up the campsite.
With Jon currently sitting in the roughshod leather saddle, everything felt a little too big, like he was a kid getting a pony ride. Having to hike up the saddle stirrups did not allay small-man complex he was getting, and I’m not a small man!
The beasts themselves handled quite well. For such massive creatures, they were surprisingly tame. He supposed being around Orcs all the time, little was likely to unsettle them.
Four of the dead Orcs made the trip with them; finding linen body bags large enough to fit them was a notable challenge. Giant old-timey linen body bags wouldn’t be the craziest thing he’d bought, but Jon couldn’t rightly source them online since their story needed continuity.
Instead, they found a small village on their trek south using the HAS. There they bartered for the sacks by selling off a weapon and some of the orc clothing. Each bread crumb was essential, like fabricating an Internet history.
One orc, he chose Baugh, was now stuck in his macabre freezer of the dead. He’d taken the time to cordon off and sterilise a large portion of his walk-in freezer over the last few weeks, sadly nothing was edible in there, but the autopsies would be worth their weight in gold. That was likely a literal analogy, but gold had depreciated a fair amount since it kept on getting mined in new worlds. Still, few currencies translated across the multiverse quite like precious metals and real coinage had once again become vogue.
Lugging the dead around and onto the horses had ‘mysteriously’ fallen to the elf. She was not happy, but Jon’s back was ecstatic. He hadn’t the heart to kill any of the majestic beasts, so he settled for taking a blood sample. Once more, the task fell inexplicably to the elf, who could nonchalantly dismount metres away from a gigantic bucking horse after sticking a syringe in its hindquarters.
Olympic gymnasts would envy how she stuck the landing. Giving rigorous applause, he scored her at nine-point-four-five and told her as much. She did not appear gratified.
Bullets had been fished out, and cases retrieved. All the orcs’ gear had been stowed with them, tied to the saddles and in the bags. The duo and their caravan were obviously conspicuous as they made their way toward a stone bridge. Travellers along the path gave them a wide berth and stared aplenty; mainly elves but a few humans milled by as well. The smell was pretty kak; he didn’t blame them.
The River Lea, it was called back home. Jon didn’t know its name here, and Kay was also fuzzy on the details. Naturally, there were soldiers at a bridge checkpoint long before they would get to Elgelica proper. As such, they were immediately commanded to halt. Kay was ahead; the next stage of the plan depended heavily on her.
“Halt, in the name of the Elgelican Council! You two on those large horses, what business do you have in Elgelica. And what are you transporting?” He spoke in Common, likely for Jon’s sake, but he addressed Kay. She responded in Elven, and Evy gave Jon subtitles.
“Good day, sir. My name is Kay Luren. We have news of great import to the Elgelican Council. As you see we come bearing the remains of a Mor’Orc scouting party we encountered to the northeast. I suspect these worrisome tidings to perhaps be of import to the Thousand-Year City and surrounding Elven lands.”
It was well-rehearsed. Jon’s role required acting like a blithe idiot, something that came naturally. “A thousand fucking years!” Jon muttered absently
“You there human! Is he your servant Luren-sun?” The guard remained speaking Common.
“Why yes, he is.”
“Please, tell him to open the sacks.”
“Jon, do as the honourable guardsman says.”
She did not so much as turn around to make eye contact. Jon dismounted with a bit of effort, waddling on saddle-sore limbs. Minutes of drudgery passed as he opened each bag in succession and showed the contents to an armed and armoured Elven inspector.
All the while, steely-eyed soldiers stood with halberds on either side of the bridge. On the other side of the river, he spied Elven archers upon humble but sturdy-looking crenelations. This was a clear choke point for any approaching military force.
Finished with inspection the guard nodded to him and returned to address Kay.
“Thank you for your patience, Luren-sun. Our commander will likely wish to speak with you. Please wait here while we send word.”
A runner was sent. Jon dawdled with the horses for a while before being escorted across the bridge and into the nearby fort. Fully dismounting, they were guided on foot indoors. Meanwhile, the horses and their burdens were attended to by guards in the courtyard.
The stonework was finely maintained, and there was an aesthetic touch to it that one might not find in most medieval castles: minimalist in its simplicity and beauty. A flower or shrub here, an elegantly carved flourish across a door or plinth there. They made their way through internal corridors until entering a chamber overlooking the central courtyard and saw the horses being fed and drinking below. Their escorts took positions at either side of the door.
An Elf showing the fine wrinkles of a middle-aged man sat at a desk. Jon guessed he was probably approaching his five-hundreds, but he knew fuck all about elf ageing, so he wondered why he bothered. Guards also attended the chamber to either side.
“Welcome Luren-sun, your servant is welcome to wait outside.” He said in Elven gesturing to Jon.
“He attends to me and goes where I go, if that is not too much to ask. Commander, I presume?”
“You presume correctly, my name is Commander Virion Shalen. I am in charge of the Len River Keep. Your attendant may stay if you so wish. Please, sit.”
She found a chair across from him, Jon waited, standing by the entrance just ahead of the guards. There was parchment, ink, and quills arrayed on the desk, but the commander had cleared enough space to offer some tea which he poured without asking into a prepared cup.
“Luren-sun, I must say, the men and I are quite mystified as to how a young female elf and her human servant came upon the remains of a Mor’Orc scouting party and their mounts.” His sharp eyes betrayed his casual tone.
“I believe you are mistaken Shalen-sena. We did not come upon them. We slew them.”
“Please, ‘sun’ is more than sufficient.” Virion politely waved it down.
“Very well, Shalen-sun.”
“So, slew them, you say? I should very much like to know how.”
“Your disbelief is quite understandable, Commander. I shall elucidate. My aide and I are travelling adventurers from the mainland. We hoped to enter Elgelica to seek knowledge of my family’s past. As with all Wood Elves, all roads eventually lead to Elgelica. We are, of course, no mere peasants, and I have the luxury of a Fire Mage in my employ. Might I allow him to demonstrate?”
“Oh, a fire mage! Why it has been quite some time! Mores the pity he is human: their lives are so ephemeral.”
Jon watched Kay’s face in profile carefully, and she didn’t quite manage to avoid the frown. It came off in a manner that could be construed as detached pity, so it was probably fine.
Virion continued, “Please use the hearth in that corner.”
“Jon, demonstrate your power for Shalen-sun.” She kept her commands clipped, as they had practised.
Virion pointed to a stone fireplace in the corner away from the balcony. It was not particularly majestic but pragmatically made to heat the room with a high chimney and excellent draw. The flames practically pulled back and up. Virion strolled over and stoked a bunch of coals, giving them a healthy radiance and raising the flames further; it was something Jon could work with.
Gently, he found the slivers and pockets of ionization in the hottest parts of the crucible and began to churn them together in a vortex the resulting flames followed suit eventually contorting the convective flow as well. The upward convolution pulled more air from below, feeding the combustion and the fire rose a metre in a matter of seconds. Any more massive and the conflagration would threaten to burst from the grating to nearby wood and furniture. Jon felt the heat radiating on his face. The guards tensed for a moment eyes on Virion, who remained placid.
“My, my, he is quite skilled. I’ve not seen a fire whipped into a frenzy so quickly before. Your servant is blessed with potency! A fortunate find indeed, Luren-sun! My earth magic is somewhat more mundane by comparison, good for pulling bows but little else.”
“You jest Shalen-sun, I’m sure your prowess with an Elven Earth Bow is formidable. My earth affinity, by comparison, is less than that of a paltry minor mage.”
Jon held her recurve bow, slung about his chest. She had handed it off to him when they dismounted, though the quiver remained with the horses. It was a stand-in quiver with very mundane looking arrows. Virion gave a polite laugh, the kind that was honed over many years and utterly humourless.
“Is that your bow?” He gestured to the item in question, and Jon wordlessly brought it forward in hand, bending at the hip, head down, and eyes to the ground.
“May I?” Asked Virion.
“Of course.” Replied Kay as she took a deliberate sip of tea. Virion stood and deftly reached out, plucking the bow from Jon’s hands. He inspected it for a minute before continuing.
“Absolutely exquisite workmanship! The detailing and how these materials have been plied together, just what are they?! Is it wood? Perhaps a new metal? But it is light and shines like glass. Where did you receive such an artefact? Am I to assume this is your Seykho Bow?”
“Yes, it is indeed my first true bow. The draw weight is meagre as you no doubt realise. Still, it is a great honour to be bestowed such an item. Regarding the origin of its craft, however, I must remain deferential of for the moment. Should matters in Elgelica proceed smoothly, I would be happy to discuss more at a future date.”
Virion tried his hand at drawing it a few times scrutinising the details of its fabrication and assembly, clearly as enraptured as Kay initially had been. That bow was likely better than any amount of gold he could have lugged through the gates.
“Of course, I completely understand.” He reluctantly gave the bow back to Jon and proceeded to sit. “Let us conclude matters at hand then, so you may be on your way.”
Kay then spun the tale of how they had happened upon the Orcs during their trek from the coast. Waiting until night, they prepared a trap. Swiftly with the use of Jon’s fire magic, they spread a ring of flame in the half-light encircling the camp. The horses had been grazing a little ways off and bolted as the fire began. Then using the same method he had used on the hearth he had whipped the flames into a torrent, the orcs could not escape, and the air within rapidly grew poisonous.
Indecision cost them their lives as they suffocated before trying to brave the blaze. Virion appeared to understand the threat of carbon monoxide poisoning and smoke inhalation even if unaware of the specifics. One body was burnt entirely to ash, and the others suffered partial burns marking their demise.
Kay pinpointed the site on a map, should they wish to verify the area of charred trees and ground. True to all accounts, the earth and trees had been burnt just as described. The corpses were also singed, they were just dead already. Jon had had a merry time pretending to be a fire god the previous evening.
Next, she explained that the Orcs were verified to be dead with the use of a thin armour piercing pike fashioned from a stiletto dagger. Jon conveniently produced the weapon for inspection. This had not been the first time he needed to explain away bullet wounds and the blade had a handy hollowed hilt with fastening holes to insert any old stick. He’d tried boar hunting with it once; now that was good meat! Jon resisted the urge to salivate.
Virion took this all in without much inquiry, he appeared in thought but not disbelieving. Afterwards, he sent them on their way. Kay graciously left the horses and their burdens in Virion’s hands as a show of good faith. Good horses, especially Mor Horses, were hard to come by. The gifts left a few smiles on guards’ faces as the pair moved off to Elgelica with only their packs and personal items.
Virion recommended a good tavern where they were to mention his name upon arrival. He watched them go from his balcony, waving at Kay and bowing before moving out of sight. Jon just hoped the dominos had been given enough of a nudge.

Comments & Calculations

Carbon Monoxide poisoning is no joke, it can kill people faster than it takes for them to realise they are dying. With the onset of a headache, it is already too late to escape as muscles have no oxygen to move. It binds better to haemoglobin than oxygen, so with every breath, CO levels in the blood accumulate. Hours to days are required on an O2 respirator to slowly purge it from the bloodstream. With large industrial furnaces, CO gas pockets are silent and swift killers accounting for many workplace fatalities.
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2020.04.20 19:08 salvolife Thinking about Conan during COVID-19

The beauty of the coronavirus and associated quarantine is that it permits the average person time to explore their interests. Mankind was thrust into the belly of the beast and an assortment of disgusting vices have apparently arisen. For some, exercise. For others, trying to develop their own sourdough starter. And for others, getting their murderous rage in check. And for yet others, the depths of the YouTube rabbit hole. This rabbit hole is deep. It is expansive. It offers refuge from the sorry reality we’ve dealing with. People are sick, people are tired. Eventually sick AND tired. YouTube, for a fleeting moment, lets the fear melt away. Not completely, but for a second, just enough to allow the mind to escape the four tastefully painted walls with no art hanging on them yet because I only moved in 2 years ago and haven’t had a chance to screw in the requisite hooks.
YouTube’s structure is perfectly suited to fill the void of the quarantine, or el quarantino in Latin. You have options on YouTube, but as I’ve discovered, the options available are a ruse. Presented to distract you from the realities in its darkest recesses. You use the search bar, like a chump, typing in things like “yoga baking” or “why does my wife keep insisting I swear too much around her family”. You watch the videos then automatically dive into associated clips, like “yoga soccer” or “why is my wife’s family so sensitive to swearing”. The more you watch, the sharper the algorithm, the more relevant videos you are presented with.
As an avid YouTube consumer, I am credited with contributing to this system for some time. An early adopter, I perused the sites early stage classics like “Visit to the Zoo”, “Chocolate Rain”, and “Journalist falls while crushing grapes and makes agonizing sound when she falls out of the basin with the grapes in it and the cameraman doesn’t run over to help fast enough”. I witnessed the stage where vloggers shared their insights on the favourite brands of blush and teens pirated entire Bollywood movies.
I am here now, and I find myself amid the commercial era. Networks see an untapped market on YouTube and have been oh so generously posting the goods, free of charge for us consumers to consume. In most cases, this is harmless. Jimmy Fallon offers light banter for the masses. His skits and sketches offer a laugh, and once the laugh is over the viewer moves along. Colbert and Kimmel elevate the conversation. They’ve really been letting Trump have it, and while enjoyable and appreciated, once the video ends, so does the evening.
I’ve spent time watching these hosts and I’ve been to the bottom of the rabbit hole. I’ve laughed, I’ve even occasionally LOLed, but I’ve made a horrifying discovery. At the bottom of the rabbit hole of talk tv and hosts is a web of clues, dangled before me by YouTube. One after the other, I mapped it out. Clue after clue, it became more glaringly obvious and I grew angry, obsessing over how clear it was all along… and how much danger we’ve been in all this time. Conan O’Brien’s humour is self deprecating, but my conclusion is simply that every word he uttered in jest was fact. Conan speaks frequently about this pasty white skin, sensitivity to sun, and general discomfort around other living human beings. I hate to be the one to break it, but the harsh reality is Conan O’Brien became a vampire in 2009.
In 2009, Conan did a segment on a hunky vampire called “Conan’s Hunky Vampire Assistant”. I am convinced it was during or immediately after this sketch that Conan was bitten by this Assistant (whose general appearance and skin tone already matched Conan’s), and he received the cursed soul of Countess Elizabeth Báthory de Ecsed of Hungary. I have to admit, I have not seen this segment for fear of becoming beholden to the soul of Báthory, and also because I was enjoying an episode of Community at the time of writing. Holding the World Record as the most prolific female murder ever, Conan’s appearance and manner were a more natural fit for Conan than his hunky assistant and surely led to the demise of Conan’s efforts at the Tonight Show in January of 2010. After extensive research, it is clear this is only the beginning of the story.
The YouTube algorithm became aware Conan was my favourite of all the hosts. Video after video, I watched Conan interview his staff, interview celebrities, and deliver dated and specific references that a mere mortal couldn’t understand without the blood of thousands of innocent people coursing through his veins. This, naturally, can only mean that Conan was an acolyte of Elizabeth Báthory for decades before submitting to her will with the gift of his very body and soul, and probably other enticements like access to celebrities and descriptions of what he is able to see on top of the fridge. She chose Conan for his inability to pass as a human, and experiencing a penchant for his androgyny, saw an opportunity for a vessel to dominate the world in the same way that Zoom calls are a vessel for foul language and off colour jokes when chatting with my wife’s family.
Conan proudly flaunts his time at Harvard university and based on Google searches and some invariably accurate and reliable Hollywood movies, I am able to conclusively confirm he was in a vampire cult dedicated to Báthory, as is tradition among Harvard students. I would investigate further and in person, but due to coronavirus and other limitations (the effort required would be immense and I’d have to probably change into my travel sweatpants) I have to rely on my extensive online research. Conan’s father is a scientist, further confirming his access to a lab and the necessary instruments to receive the blood transfusions from previous devotees of Báthory to deepen his pre-vampire sexual powers. Convenient, right? Conan capitalized on his familial connections and his embeddedness in the secret societies of Harvard to then write for the Simpsons and SNL. More proof is uncovered in a simple analysis of Conan’s Simpson’s writing credits. Treehouse of Horror IV, where none-other-than Conan O’Brien receives a writing credit, for a legendary Dracula homage. In hindsight, the clues were obvious that Conan was not writing a lighthearted, Halloween themed comedy, but an aspirational love letter to Báthory where he detailed a dream world where everyone was able to fly and live openly as a vampire, with Marge as the lead. Conan’s overwhelming sexual attraction to cartoon characters (a second essay on that later) is revealed in his structuring the sketch with Marge as Báthory.
Conan being tapped to take over the Tonight Show was humanity’s closest brush with total annihilation prior to COVID 19. Offering very, very well reviewed content with over 1 Billion viewers every night (I assume), his domination began and his offering to Báthory was cemented on September 29, 2009. Conan lovingly gazes at his Vampire assistant and then proceeded to have a lustful encounter. I can only assume this based on the thumbnail because, again, I have not seen that clip and will likely not watch it because I’ve made up my mind on the issue and you can’t convince me otherwise. From here his power only amassed.
The true hero of the story is Jay Leno, who courageously staggered out of retirement in the hopes of preserving the innocence of the masses from Conan’s reign of terror. Conan losing the tonight show seems to have lessened his power. He now operates his dark dominion on TBS at the ungodly half (witching) hour where he now resides. His podcast is pretty good though, can’t lie.
To conclude, Conan’s girly good looks, translucent skin, shock of red hair, and his ability to zap any room’s joy were clear signs that he was a vampire and I’m frankly shocked it was only Jay Leno and I who were able to see it. I’ll continue to monitor the situation as time goes on, but I fear for my safety even revealing the fruit of my research. This revelation, despite being among the most interesting parts of my quarantine, along with finding the sweet spot for Chinese food before expiration, has not ruined my life so far. I’ve also been listening to Conan’s podcast and have fallen increasingly under his spell. Will keep you posted as to whether I lose my mind completely and inherit Báthory next, or whether I can go on living my life living in close quarters, trying to limit the amount of swearing I use when on Zoom calls with my wife’s family.
submitted by salvolife to conan [link] [comments]

2020.02.22 15:45 Glass-Significance Badly need HELP: How do I keep him interested and convert from non-serious to serious?

DISCLAIMER: I came to this sub to seek your advice, support and understanding. Please dont judge. This is a developing story so if your advise works, ill keep you posted on what happens next if youre interested. Sorry if this is way too long.
INTRODUCTION I’m new to this sub and I’ve been learning more about RPW dating. About me and my dating history (or lack thereof): I’m a 28 year old female who had just gotten out of a 12 year serious long distance relationship (broke it off when I found out he has a live in partner of 24 yrs). My ex is 20 years older.I find that I’m more attracted to men who are smart and are much older than me. I’ve never really experienced dating before as that was the only relationship I’ve ever had. Of course, I was heartbroken as this was the only guy I’ve ever really known and am used to my entire life.
I live a busy life mostly spending long hours at work and with family. Now that I’m newly single (9 months and counting), I wanted to experience what it feels like to date, be outging, meet new people and eventually land into a serious and committed relationship. As I venture into the dating world, I realized that it can be daunting, exhausting and frustrating. I scroll,swipe pictures here and there, read bios and find things interesting about the men, some casual chat messages and a few phone calls which really lead to nothing (didn’t meet anyone). I thought that these dating sites/apps don’t work for me as most of the guys are not really honest about their intentions. To weed out the men who are just looking to play, I decided to join this dating service where you come to seek arrangement based on what works for both parties. This I thought, could give me a higher chance at landing a more honest man who will be clear about his boundaries, desires and intentions. With the experience I had from previous dating sites, I came to the new one with lower expectations that I’ll find anyone interesting.
Fast forward to a week, I finally felt like I found a connection. Guy in his mid 40s, divorced with 2 boys (19 & 15) a sr executive in this big company. We corresponded and finally had our first phone call. In his profile hes only looking for fun and something discreet. He was upfront about what he wanted. Hes not looking for a 1 night stand either but he finds that the women hes dated were too clingy and were revolving their lives around him. He didnt like that. He was clear about having his own space and that he would cancel any plans or date if it meant he had to be there for his kids or something important at work came up. The women would be ok with it at first but would resent him for it later on and then leave. He talked about his previous marriage and why it didnt work out. He said that his priorities are his kids and that his ex wife and him had made a pack to be discreet about who they will date to protect them. And that when the kids are mature enough to understand and have finished school, then both will be open about introducing new partners to the them. I completely understood this and I couldnt agree more. I listened to him and asked a few follow up questions. He was also honest about his feelings and vulnerability. That hes a man who has needs and also feels lonely and longs for someone to hold at night etc but right now not looking for anything serious.
Now, maybe this is a flaw of mine but him being straightforward about what he wants, his situation and his vulnerability made me feel connected. It felt like it was a challenge. I have this urge to prove Im different from the previous women. I assured him that I get where hes coming from and that Im on the site to look for fun and excitement as well since Im newly single. I also talked about my previous relationship. I had a few naughty convos with him for the first week and 1 steamy hot video call which only happened once. I realized that the guy isnt a big texter and caller and Im the type who would send gmorning/evening texts which he barely responds to. Id start a convo to get him to text me more, he would reply sometimes and would get it going then leaves me hanging and stops responding later on. This gets me frustrated but I keep it cool.
THE BUILD UP.. Three months into us talking, we agreed to meet and go over for coffee a week after.The build up was giving me extreme excitement. On the week we were supposed to meet, he stopped responding and texting. I could stil see him online but he doesnt read my messages nor answer my calls. I was worried and kept sending concerned messages. I kept my cool and was cautious about the words I used to not sound frustrated. I asked for closure and expressed that Id appreciate if he could tell me upfront that he didnt want to be bothered me anymore and Ill respect his wished instead of going silent. Still there was no sign of life from him. A week later, he texted and apologized for going ghost. He explained that he went over our convo and felt (assumed) that I was looking for something serious and he didnt want to misrepresent himself to me. He didnt want to be in a situation he cant handle since he has insinuated many times that hes not looking for something serious. He added that hes a very busy person and cant even probably do justice to a platonic relationship. So I tell him, if hes really that busy, how does he have time to pay for a dating membership and be even on the site. He said he joined the site 2 yrs ago but never really pursued anyone coz he didnt find a connection. Hes only accessed it again 2 weeks prior when he was at the airport but doesnt have subscription anymore. I apologized and has said that I didnt mean to make it seem like I was seeking for something more. I assured that I understand his concern. I shared that I thought he had gotten a cold feet since ill be the first woman hell meet from the internet. I kept my cool but at the same time asserted that he should give us a chance to meet over for coffee as theres no harm in having a friendly chat. After this incident, Ive learned to set my boundaries and not seem too clingy. I stopped texting daily but would make sure to check in from time to time. I mirrored the same effort he was putting towards. Two weeks after, I brought up the subject of meeting for coffee again, so we set it up on the eve after work. I felt confident it was bound to happen this time. Evening came and received a text 3 hours before scheduled that he has to cancel because something came up at work and cant leave early. I empathized and offered to wait but he insisted it will be too late if it were to happen as we both had to work the next day. I kept my cool and said it was ok and we can reschedule for next time. My heart sank and was frustrated. I felt like crying as I had arranged for that day to happen. Excitement dropped, any bit of hope left was gone. Just when you thought I had given up, I didnt. The more he acts evasive the more I want him. I dont understand this about myself either, I seem to like guys who are this type. I let it slide this time, waiting for a perfect timing. We still text here and there but not much effort. A month after, December came and I made a bold move to ask to see him again before the end of the year. I expressed in jest that weve been talking for 4 months, that should be long enough to convince him Im not a serial killer. I let him know that Im not the type to easily give up but if the meet doesnt happen this year, I doubt it will ever happen. I assured that I have no expectations and that I just wanted to meet him because I like and find him attractive. Of course I was cautious with how I used my words as I didnt want it to sound like Im giving an ultimatum. At the back of my mind, I was already losing hope and interest. He replied and agreed again to meet for the 3rd time. I was already skeptical but I gave it a shot. I grew more anxious as I anticipate the days leading to our meet up, I wasnt as excited because of the previous incidents.
FIRST MEETING.. Judgement day came (Day after xmas). I arrived 30 mins early and texted him of my whereabouts. He came on time. I got in his vehicle and said our greetings and pleasantries. He didnt seem nervous but I can sense a little shyness at first. I wasnt nervous at all, we were in the vehicle for about 30mins as he was driving to our destination (Starbucks). I asked if its ok for him to hold hands as we walked to the coffee shop and he was cool with it. We Went over for coffee and had a fun and serious conversation basically about each others career, romantic and personal life. We got back in the vehicle and was parked for 30 mins waiting for my driver to pick me up. I had this assumption that our first meet would be sexually motivated given we met at that site and had done a few naughty stuff prior but turns out he was actually respectful and behaved. I was wearing a V neck dress (cleavage showing) and stilletoes. He made a comment about my outfit, asked if I was wearing a bra. So I answered yes and grabbed his hand put it under my bra so he could get a feel. I teased and said, see I told you Im wearing one. He played with my breasts without hesitation. I asked if he could suck and bite them, he obliged and suck them gently. He didnt bite coz he was concerned it might hurt me. People were passing by us so he had to stop what he was doing as we run the risk of getting seen from the inside of the vehicle. There was a bit of silence so I asked if its ok to get a kiss, he said yes. I leaned over to kiss him. A smack and a little nibble on his lips. He seemed passive about the kiss, probably wasnt sure what kind of kiss he was getting. You could hear a pin drop from the silence. I did this again and he was still passive , no tonguing though, just me nibbling on his upper and lower lips. For him to return the gesture, I asked if he could kiss me back and he did but was only a kiss on the cheek. I smiled and asked why only a kiss on the cheeks, he replied that there are cameras in the area and where we were parked had a bunch of lights directed towards us (the windshield), people outside could see us.He talked about how he has access to the cameras and can zoom in out, at his job and could hear peoples conversation if he wanted to but would never dare do it if it didnt require for his job to do so. It was getting late so both of us were tired, we held each others hands. As the clock ticks, he made a bold move to put his hand under my dress and started to carress my thighs.I was getting wet, a bit conscious and shy at this point...when my driver arrived (thank god) lol. I had to leave and we kissed each other goodbye with a promise to see each other again after the holidays. An hour later, we update each other of our whereabouts, he said he had a great time and looks forward to the next meet (he doesnt call it a date but a meet) with a blushing emoji. That evening, I didnt realize that I had forgotten a gift I had bought for my boss, in his backseat. He promised to give it once we meet again.
THE AFTERMATH + SECOND MEETING.... Having met him, I expected that maybe this time he would text or reply/communicate more. I guess there was change but only at a bare minimum. January came we both were busy with our careers. I kept my distance and would only return the effort hes giving. 2 weeks before Feb I expressed my interest in seeing him for the 2nd time, probably by Feb 13 or 14 + I needed to get the item I had forgotten in his vehicle so I can gift it to my boss. He gave assurance that hell take note of it but 14th maybe a no as its a valentine day where people are out and about causing traffic on the road. I pretended that I was oblivious to the fact that 14th was a Vday. I looked forward and waited patiently. That week came, we agreed to meet on the 13th. I planned out my schedule and made sure to look damn good even though I was a little anxious. 2 hours before scheduled I notify that Im leaving work in a few to our rendezvous. 10 mins later I get a text that he has to cancel as he cant leave work early due to an urgent matter he has to address. Its hard for me to believe this now as its becoming a theme already. I was extremely upset and frustrated but I replied with understanding and assured that I can wait and will be at the rendezvous on time. He insisted he cant make it and has an early meeting the next day. I expressed a little disappointment by saying he couldve told me at a much earlier time so I didnt have to leave work early, I cant go back since Im already on the road. I politely insisted that he doesnt have to stay long and just hand me the item so I can give it to my boss. He apologized and said that hes not the type of person who just cancels unless its a valid reason. He offered to have the item shipped the next day if it was really that urgent. I went quiet for 5mins thinking of a good reply. I responded that the item is indeed important but I also wanted to see him. He replied and offered to swing by the next day (evening) Feb 14 for a few minutes. I didnt respond and got to the rendezvous and notified him. He replied and said he cant make it. I assured that I understand and that I just felt the need to let him know and I was going to leave after I pee, with or without him. That night was horrible I felt like I was yet again rejected and dismissed. So I went on another date with a friend instead. Yes Im not putting all my eggs in one basket.
The next day, I let him know that I needed him to confirm by 6pm if the meeting is on or not. So I let him know Im already at the meeting place and hes on the way. I didnt know what was bound to happen that night since we didnt have anything planned. While I was waiting he texted and asked politely if its ok to get him a drink at SB since I was already there waiting and that hell pay me in the car, hes too tired to go outside. I gracefully said its fine and he didnt need to pay me since he paid for the drinks last time. He arrived, told me where he was parked so I went. I was a little anxious but kept my cool. Got in his car, smiled, handed him the drink and he said thank you. He handed me the item I had left in his car and I apologized for the inconvenience and thanked him for still seeing me despite his busy schedule. He may have sensed that I was upset from last night which is why he kept his distance and there was little silence for a while as we sip our own drinks. I jested and asked why I didnt get a kiss, he gave me the same reply last time, lights directed towards us and didnt want people passing by to suspect that we were doing something. I let him know that I understand then asked how much longer he can stay, said he has 30 minutes. I didnt want to bring up what happened the night before so I just looked at him and gave assurance that I wasnt mad and that Im happy he made it tonight (Friday).(He picks up the kids every Friday to stay with him during the weekends. So him making time for me on a Friday is a big deal to me since I knew the weekend is dedicated to the kids). He replied with, oh yeah Thanks. We talked for a few more minutes as we finish our drink. I told him about the problem I had at work which almost cost me to lose my job and I almost didnt know what to do. He asked what happened so I told him. He commented that I couldve come to him sooner so he couldve helped me out with how to work around it as hes been running companies for yrs and yrs and knew the due process etc. In this meeting, there was no petting or anything, I didnt ask to hold hands, I didnt attempt to seduce or do anything since he already set the tone when I arrived (not giving me a kiss coz hes concerned people could see us from the outside). I let out a cute sigh and mumbled that maybe there wont be a 3rd meeting, he reacted and made a promise that well see each other again when he gets back from out of the country for a week. Its just that hes busy right now due to a lot of movements at work (higher boss will retire end of Feb and hes next in line to take the post). Hearing this from him gave me a little hope that there will be a 3rd meeting. Time was up and we had to go. Thanked him for the time and asked for a kiss. He obliged and had his lips pouted ready to kiss me. It was a quick smack, then I went for another one..then off we left. We both update each other as soon as we arrive home and said our goodnight.
OBSERVATIONS From what Ive observed, hes careful with his words, weve had conversations but Ive never heard him say the words "love, date, fell in love, i miss etc". First week we started talking, he only asked about how Im doing 2x. Up to present, I mostly am the first one to text and ask how hes doing but like I said, I stopped over texting and only check in from time to time (maybe 2 to 3 txt per week). Hes only addressed me by my name 2x and this was in text when we first started talking. But to be fair, we havent disclosed each others complete name..yet, we only go by our nickname. Hes not complimented me yet. Id like to think that he doesnt do so coz he didnt want me to misinterpret his compliments since he is not into something serious. He has shared pics of his kids though. I dont know where he works nor does he know mine. I tried to ask his position at his job but wont share so I didnt insist coz Im tryjng to respect his boundary. So yeah theres mystery in all this. Id like to think he really is who he says he is (divorced and not cheating on his wife). I have asked if he has a live in partner and he strongly replied with no, if he did he wouldnt be out on a Vday. No other observations or red xflag other than when he cancels our meet up.
THE PLAN: HOW DO I KEEP HIM INTERESTED? I appreciate if you got to this part of my post. Please dont judge me. Im not looking to rush into things with him. I know hes not serious right now but Im hoping that over time, Ill be able to earn his trust and affection. Somehow, I have this theory that maybe hes giving me a test? Is he testing my patience and how committed and determined I am? Maybe hes purposely cancelling in the hopes that Ill go away sooner or later? I dont know. I want to show him Im different than the rest of the women hes met.
Im running out of ideas on what to do when we meet for the 3rd time. I want to keep him interested and actually spend quality time with him every time we meet. I have asked for his input on what he wanted to do from the last 2 meetings we had but he doesnt give any input and he seems to let me drive the situation.
I do my best to be as feminine as I can be. Compliment him, listen to him and show appreciation and be sexy for him. I dont want to seem aggressive and masculine as this might put him off so I try my best to be gentle and staying true to myself.
Can you please give me ideas on how to keep him interested and motivated? What should I do on our 3rd meeting? We plan to meet next week Thurs/Friday.
How do I convert him from non-serious to serious? Im not rushing things, Im giving myself 1yr to be able to convert him or at least keep him interested. Its been 6months and running since we started talking.
I have this idea for the next time we meet, where Ill express how Id like for this to move forward. I.e how often we can arrange to meet/spend time (1or2x/month), things we could do together, how often he should try to communicate/respond to texts, and maybe request for him to ring me sometimes since he doesnt ring me at all, only text, so I can hear his voice. Is this a good idea?If so, how do I go about it? Is the 3rd meet the right time to talk about this or do I wait 2 more meetings to do so? I want to use sex to keep him interested but I am not all for it as Im afraid hell ghost me right after. What am I doing wrong? What am I doing right? How do I keep my frame? I really feel a strong connection for this man. Hes so mysterious, very masculine and smart which keeps me more interested and drawn to him. Its been 6months since we started talking and I still feel strongly for him.
Please dont tell me to dump him and find somebody else coz thats not the answer I seek.
Your help is much appreciated. Thank you ladies!
submitted by Glass-Significance to RedPillWomen [link] [comments]

2019.08.09 14:13 ultimatefuzzypickles [Love Live! fansite] Website is run suspiciously but any concerns anyone has are ignored.

Edit since this slipped my mind: Love Live! is an anime/franchise about a bunch of high school girls singing and dancing and being friends. If you've ever seen the Nico Nico Nii meme (or even the hit or miss one since she was cosplaying Nico) this is where it's from.
So, I'm not going to specify where this happened because if you know, you know. And if you don't, it isn't necessary. I don't want to start even more shit than has already happened. Anyway, Love Live! fansites aren't too common as is so I believe it shouldn't be hard to figure out where this is happening. Onto the story.
Note: I did a horrible job explaining this, and skipped a lot, like the part where my friend brought her concerns up with the owner directly and was ignored, but I did my best.
This website brands itself as a website made by the community, for the community. As such, despite the owner complaining about being broke and not being able to afford running the site if not for community donations, they hold regular giveaways for the birthdays of every main character in the franchise. Not just digital art giveaways - physical prizes, both official and unofficial merch, are involved. For literal months now, users on this website have had a lot of problems with the way these are run, though. My own first run-in with it was in November 2018, when I made a post commenting on how my prize from the giveaway that happened in November 2017 had never arrived, and I was sad because that was supposed to be official merch and my attempts to reach out to staff were ignored. That one post sparked a LOT of drama, with other people finally gaining the courage to talk about how their prizes never arrived, and nothing had been done about it. At the same time, other people had issues with how website staff and the owner themselves were participating in giveaways since to them it seemed unfair. Thirdly, only people who already owned merch seemed to ever win. Merch, cosplay, and cakes. Never art or anything of the sort. Naturally, this was a complaint too. This led the owner to get pissed, writing a long rant about how she gives up on these giveaways, talking about how even as she typed she was working on 21 prizes, and calling us "ungrateful brats." Those were the exact words used. This rant also included mention of how staff are allowed to enter giveaways for fun, but not to win, and ended with "You guys are honestly hurting my feelings right now," after a very angry rant. Emotional manipulation, much?
... That aside, the whole ordeal ended quickly because no one was willing to say much more after being called ungrateful brats just for raising genuine concerns you have in a polite way. Nothing was fixed, nothing was changed, as usual. I myself took a long break from the website after that after being harassed in private messages to the point where I nearly cried. I actually asked the owner to disable this person's ability to message me since the website lacks a block button, but they didn't do it until they were convinced to by a moderator. Shows how much they care about their users. Fast forward to a few months later, I'm no longer actively using the site but I'm in the officially endorsed "unofficial" discord server, the admin of which is part of the website staff as well. This admin's favorite character is born in June, and everyone knew she planned to enter the giveaway despite already owning most of the merch of this character, and as far as I'm aware everything that was among the prizes for this one. Hell, this admin is the type to own dupes of merch as well. Soon before making their post, the admin (who has had issues with my friend and I for reasons too long for this post) asks in the server whether it would be abuse of admin powers to use an @everyone to show people their post (in a 200+ member server). Several people, obviously on their good side, said that it might be, but that it was okay. I chimed in, saying it would be unfair because the giveaways are about 50% vote-based, and not everyone could ping 200 people to ask for votes, so it basically guaranteed her a win. They agreed, and went on to use a ping. Granted, it wasn't an @everyone, but it was still an @here, with likely about 90ish people online at the time. They went on to win the giveaway, but after several people complained about website staff winning (remember how the owner said staff could enter, but not win?) the winners' post was edited to include a second winner. Gee, nice damage control.
Another point I found suspicious is that aside from vote counts, every single giveaway winner post includes point totals from the judges working on the giveaway. Usually, whoever has the most points wins the judges' pick category, and whoever has the most votes wins the crowd's favorite category. However, the giveaway our lovely admin won was missing point counts. And she was up there as the judges' pick along with the edited-in winner. Why hide their point totals, then?
Moving on to July, though another giveaway in the middle here had similar issues. In July, my favorite character's birthday giveaway is held, and so I entered it. I didn't expect to win, since I had no merch or cake to show, unlike that admin up there, and all I could do was post about how much I love said character along with a card edit that took me roughly 6 hours and an animation that took me 13. With these giveaways branded as being for those who want to show how much they love a character, I expected that my entry should be okay. After all, entries of the same length as mine (roughly 1300 words) had won in the past. Even the admin I mentioned had a post at about 1200 words. At the very least, I wanted to come in second, or third even. Two weeks later, the results came in. I did win crowd's favorite by a long shot. I had 73 votes, with second place having 30-something. I was also an honorable mention in the judges' pick category. I was a little annoyed, but then I read the comments on my entry. "Too long," one said, "which I disliked when reading it." Too long. When a 1400 word post had won before, and at least three other winners were between 1200 and 1300 words. And who did win 1st place? A donator to the site and member of the staff Discord, of course. This annoyed my friends and I, and one of them decided to post about how the giveaways are getting shittier each year, and how they're becoming increasingly reliant on connections or closeness with staff. Suddenly, the comment section is filled with "It's not about merch!" even though merch wasn't mentioned in the first place. In the staff discord, people started talking about how my friend's post could be ignored because they didn't want "negativity," the post was "bitching," and my friend had "had issues since June" (since they were part of the people who complained about staff winning). Again, their post inspired people to make their own, and people starting bringing up their concerns again. Concerns about merch being the only thing that can win, that these giveaways are unfair, that spending money seems to be the only way to win. "Judges are assigned by their skill to be fair and unbiased," staff replied. And the merch argument that had been going on for literal ages continued unsolved.
A new argument was brought up by staff: "This is a free website made by fans, for fans. No one is entitled to anything about this website." But do you really have that argument once you have a huge userbase and are taking donations to keep the website running? After advertising your site everywhere as a place for the community to come together? Once you start getting so many users you are expected to keep them pleased, are you not? Especially when they're paying you to do it. The website was supposed to get an overhaul that introduced features everyone has been asking for for ages, and that v2 of the site was announced, but when someone in the staff discord asked about it recently they got told that the owner canceled it without telling anyone. So the whole website was left waiting for something that would never come. I don't think that's something you should be doing to the people who are providing the money that keeps your website up. Staff also insists that they've been discussing things, but no one ever sees the results of these discussions - discussions that affect us - so is there really any point? Can we be expected to trust the staff that never, ever listens to us? That seems to do things only for their own benefit?
I soon made a post saying that it was pretty hurtful that my post was called "too long" in the section where judges are supposed to state what they liked about your post. People agreed with me that it was inappropriate. They also brought up staff's terrible handling of the giveaways again, as well as the "ungrateful brats" comment. I posted about the lack of transparency from staff as well as all my other problems, and so did my friend. People agreed again, talking about the negative experiences they've had with staff and how suspicious everything they do is. Hell, to quote a comment on my post:
One time I made a strongly worded comment about the giveaways- It was definitely not the nicest message, but I basically had the same grievances you list here. Staff pretty much replied to my comment in a rude way (which is understandable, but I didn't think they were going to respond at all, so I was kind of speaking in jest as well). When I responded to that reply in a more polite way, they never messaged me back, but instead addressed my grievances to a different person, even though staff discussed what I said. To that other person who didn't even respond to me specifically, just OP.
Then either staff or OP deleted their post, basically censoring that entire train of my messages and other people's messages about problems they also had with the giveaways, and preventing the public from seeing it. Now that I'm seeing a bunch of posts talk about the way contests are run months after that post was deleted... [gif of tea]
A lot was discussed, we talked about how staff seems to not be able to handle everything they've taken on and it's causing trouble for everyone, etc etc. No comments from staff whatsoever. Radio silence. Gotta stay positive and happy 24/7, right? No negativity allowed. Yesterday, though, a member of staff posted a link to a Q&A form. Ask your questions about the site and we'll answer, it said. Except the form wasn't anonymous and asked for your username, which imo is pretty discouraging. Comments on the post were also disabled. Everyone had been complaining about staff doing things so secretively, and yet here it was again. Anything remotely public was closed off, and all questions would be seen by staff only. We had no guarantee that they'd answer every question. I'll repeat this again, it was posted yesterday. August 8th, 2019. Soon after, I posted about it:
funny how they made a post about a q&a but disabled comments so everything's private and secret instead of done in public as literally everyone wants. not to mention asking for your username on the form so people are too intimidated to ask more daring and honest questions. love the transparency here with staff getting to pick and choose which questions to answer or ignore and no one having any evidence of discarded questions.
Aaand guess what? My post was mysteriously moved down on the feed so no one sees it, its post date now set to August 2nd. I guess I'm a time traveler now, posting about things before they even happen?
Anyway, I was kinda looking for opinions on this. Is this or is this not shady as fuck? Or am I the one in the wrong? Idk but I'm mad.
UPDATE: My post calling them out for moving the other post down to August 2nd just got pushed down to July 24th. Person associated with staff tells me it's a glitch, but I don't think I can trust that LMAO
submitted by ultimatefuzzypickles to HobbyDrama [link] [comments]

2018.10.29 04:26 deleted-desi Guy (28?M) may be lying about his age, may be much younger than he says lol. I'm 28F. He might be literally 18!

I met a guy online (we are both Indian American and met thru a matrimonial matchmaking website for Indians in the States, which is a cross between online dating and traditional Indian matchmaking - it's like matchmaking for the modern age, with the major difference from say being that dating often progresses more slowly and sometimes parents chaperone dates (which gets a hard NO from me, but some do that). That's just for context - I'm not sure it changes much in this particular situation...
Anyway, this guy seems like a nice guy in all our interactions in texting and calling, not throwing up any red flags (so far the dates through this site have been ok, none of them went anywhere but no one has been creepy so far), so we get to meeting for coffee. I jokingly write, "I hope you don't show up and turn out to be 50!" This is purely in jest because he said before he's the same age as me (28) and I believed him. But then he replies "Don't worry, I'm 28. I was born in '91."
Before I could stop myself, I noticed that if he was born in '91 he could, at oldest, be 27, if he already had his birthday this year, or 26 if he hadn't. I was born in '90 and just turned 28 this month, so we would be basically the same age if he were born in '91, (one year is not a problem for me; it is for more traditional Indians but I couldn't care less) but I didn't believe him.
His email address ends in 99 so for a while it's been at the back of my mind that he might be only born in 99 so only 18 or 19 years old!
I still havent replied to the text. what should I send back? Lol. He seems like a genuinely nice guy but I'm not going to creep on someone almost a decade younger than me! Should I just meet him and see how it goes? I HOPE I'll be able to tell if he's actually just 18 or 19 years old vs. a decade older than that...
submitted by deleted-desi to dating [link] [comments]

2018.09.06 04:10 TeresaRScruggs [Kindle] The Golden Tower (Magisterium #5) by Holly Black

[Kindle] The Golden Tower (Magisterium #5) by Holly Black
The final, thrilling instalment in this extraordinary series from bestselling authors Holly Black and Cassandra Clare.
A generation ago, powerful mage Constantine Madden came close to achieving what no magician had ever achieved: the ability to bring back the dead. He didn't succeed . . . but he did find a way to keep himself alive, inside a young child named Callum Hunt.
Facing up to what he is, Callum has battled chaos and evil across four years of magical training at the Magisterium, eventually defeating the armies of chaos in an epic battle.
It came at a cost.
Now, triumphant and heartbroken, Callum Hunt has just about had enough, and is ready to complete his training. But the evil Callum faced has not given up just yet...READ MORE►►

Details of Book
Author : Holly Black
Number of pages : 256 pages
Editor : RHCP Digital
Date of Publication : September 6th 2018


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2018.08.02 22:11 bkjproductions Gutenberg impressions and WordCamp Boston, July 2018

I recently attended WordCamp Boston, where I saw several presentations about the glories of the new “Gutenberg” editor for WordPress. Here’s my takeaway: The developers are hell-bent on installing it into the core code of WordPress, certain to create “a new editing paradigm”. The bar for entry into coding has just been raised dramatically.
Hoping to get some conversations started, at WordCamp, I wore a T-shirt stating my position. Gutenberg, Core: No, Plugin:Yes. I believe there are certainly some benefits to this new technology, however, don’t shove it into the core code of WordPress, but rather, let it be an optional plugin. As a plugin, you can decide whether or not to use it, and it doesn’t add to the amount of code in a basic WordPress installation.
However, no one really took the bait, apart from one or two of the vendors there, until mid-afternoon, when Tammie Lister and Aaron Jorbin approached me and inquired. I really appreciate the fact they reached out, but I came away from the conversation feeling that, of course, I have not convinced them, and they have not convinced me. It’s a stalemate. Their viewpoint will prevail, as they effectively own the chessboard. Tammie and Aaron are core WP contributors, and Tammie is one of the lead Gutenberg developers. She gave the Keynote Address and has a wonderful British accent. Tammie could read the phone book and I would love listening.
My basic points:
  1. Drupal has such a thing as a choice of editing interfaces, so there is a precedence for editor-as-plugin.
  2. Many WP users are already installing frameworks/editors like Divi that replace the editor anyway.
  3. It represents about 18% more code than WordPress itself. That is, you are immediately increasing the size of WordPress by nearly one fifth when it is added permanently to core.
  4. Did I mention “added permanently to core”? What about in five years, when a new editor comes along, maybe it’s voice-controlled, or uses some other metaphor than block type (phototype, anyone? maybe dot matrix)? We’d be stuck with the legacy code of Gutenberg.
  5. Users who do not want Gutenberg are directed to install the Classic Editor plugin pre-emptively, so that when WP5.0 comes out (with Gutenberg built in to the core code). However, the Classic Editor is Beta, and we are also told never, never, never, to put Beta code into a live site.
  6. I have 60 or 70 websites to maintain, so now I need to go to each client and explain that probably they are going to want to install the Classic plugin. Is it fair for them to have to pay for that time? Or, if Gutenberg suddenly appears in their familiar editor, is it fair for them to have to spend the extra few hours to learn something new that will probably not benefit them? Certainly going forward, my new websites may take advantage of Gutenberg, but as a business owner, I would be very annoyed if I had to change a well-proven workflow. (As I am.)
  7. Gutenberg could be installed as a plugin automatically, just like the Hello Dolly and Akismet plugins are automatically installed on a fresh WP installation. Then, the user has a choice.
  8. Gutenberg could also be installed intelligently as a plugin. On old installations, the plugin would be inactive. On new installations, it would be active. Very simply, the older users are unaffected but have the freedom of choice, and the newer users could take advantage immediately, without having the mental baggage of the old editor. There is precedence for this, too: Anyone remember when WordPress was just a blog tool and there was a Blogroll/Link type of content? Some time after custom post types were added, someone woke up and realized that the Blogroll was sort of obsolete, and since it wasn’t being used as much anymore, this feature was removed for new installations of WP, but left intact on auto-upgrades of old installations. An elegant solution: New users are unaware of the change, and old users are not disturbed.
  9. The Gutenberg plugin itself has a 2.7 star rating. The reviews are polar: Either it’s 5 stars (with typically very little descriptive text about why it deserves this) or it’s 1-star-only-because-I-can’t-give-it-zero (with a five-page diatribe peppered with flaws, concerns and occasional insults).
  10. As I learned in one of the presentations, the structural naming conventions within the editor are not the same as the div structures that are rendered. That is, suppose the div that contains some zippy new feature (like the block cover image) is named “wp-block-cover-image” when you are styling it on the front end (for final presentation on your web page). It may be named something like “block-image” on the back-end editor, so you would need to make sure to style both .wp-block-cover-image and .block-image if you want to control how the editor looks on the back end so it provides a closer wysiwyg interface.
  11. The new design features in Gutenberg do not automatically exist in your theme, so you may be disappointed in how they are finally rendered. For example, the banner image, where white text is on top of a photo, is simply just a few extra div’s and css that make it look pretty. That’s not really a major improvement; it’s just some fancy CSS. It is unclear how Gutenberg adds this to the page-- is it injected within a