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Last night, after work, I drove to a meeting of the New Hampshire Labor Council. When I arrived there was a sign on the locked door, saying "Call this number blah blah blah." As I said in The Ukraine Thingy thread, I don't have a cellphone, so I walked around the building a couple of times, looking to see if I could see my comrade through the window and signal him. But, alas, I couldn't, so I just went home.
Apparently, the chair of the meeting was the head of the local branch of the National Air Traffic Controllers Association and editor of the New Hampshire Labor Newsletter. Apparently, he and my comrade have repeatedly butted heads over the last couple of years, mostly, of course, over the issue of supporting the Democrats. Later, when I spoke with my comrade, he said "When I walked into the room, XXXX was the only person there. He looked up, saw me, sighed, and said 'Who told you about this?!?' I just laughed and he didn't say anything else to me for the rest of the evening."
Revolutionary socialist trolls in your f*+!ing face, pro-Democrat labor bureaucrats!
Vod Canockers wrote:
I, of course, think voting is for ninnies. I was just wondering how many disenfranchised felons there are in Ferguson.
I wondered what Ferguson looked like through the prism of The New Jim Crow and started cursorily googling, but I didn't get very far before I realized that I have to go to work. :(
Bookmarking for later:
"Justice Brennan/Take out some insurance on me, ooh baby"
Amusing anecdote about Chomsky that reminded me of the recent exchange here:
One night over a bottle of Irish whiskey, Alexander Cockburn told me a story about Noam Chomsky’s teeth. One day the great brain went to the dentist for a check up after several years of neglect. During the examination, the tooth doctor noticed extreme wear on the enamel of Chomsky’s molars.
“Noam, do you grind your teeth?”
“Not that I know of.”
“Well, the enamel is taking a real pounding. Perhaps you’re doing it at night. Can you ask your wife if she’s observed anything?”
Chomsky goes home Lexington, near the MIT campus and tells his wife Carol about his encounter with the dentist. That night and the next, Carol stays up after Noam has fallen asleep, keeping a close watch for any nocturnal grinding but notices no unusual dental machinations.
However, Carol did observe a furious gnashing each morning at the breakfast table as Noam read his way through the New York Times.
Psyche for Saturday
I found this while bopping around youtube:
I've only gotten up to The Chocolate Watch Band, but, so far, they seem to be mostly American third-stringers. Pretty funny.
Summon Comrade Anklebiter!
Alas, I have no idea what you pinkskins are arguing about (Gamergate? Zoe Quinn? Mass Effect?), but it is very pleasing indeed, to be summoned by a stranger [DJdD](and such a pretty one, too! [Waggles eyebrows])[/DJdD] and gratifying to learn that I have successfully disseminated communist propaganda on the Paizo messageboards.
Vive le Galt!
I feel like writing out some lyrics, too.
Looking like a born again
I'm topped full of vitamins
What would it take
Are you ready to be heartbroken?
I don't really have anything to add, I just wanted to voice my appreciation for Comrade Dingo's powerful and, er, singular vision, both here and in other threads current on the OTD without actually favoriting one of his posts, that way the feds won't be able to prove anything.
Din-go! Din-go! Din-go!
Male Goblin Druid 4
Kirth Gersen wrote:
Miralda looks unconvinced, but you're not particularly sad, since the Burgomeister is telling the group which house is his, and that if you pull the little rope to ring the doorbell he'll have his houseboy show you to the bathroom.
Ooh, I missed this before.
After giving Gleed a quick pat down for hidden daggers and other possible dangers, Cricket is delighted to give Gleed a bath. Looks like he has some wounds, too, poor baby. Cricket directs Gleed towards the Burgomeister's house with his quarterstaff, giving the freakish gnome swift taps if he lags or falters, only interrupting his homilies and parables from the teachings of Old Mother Tree to whistle for Wolvie.
When he gets to the front door, he pulls the rope.
Male Goblin Druid 4
Seeing that no one else appears to be interested in his (invisible?) unconscious gnome, Cricket slaps him around.
Hey, freak, where are your spellbooks?
When the Burgomeister arrives, Cricket accepts his gracious hospitality and sez:
I love festivals. Anywhere in this town I can take a bath?
Kingpinmaker, Game N+3, Part One
So, the party makes friends with "George" and the Red-Banned Band, prepare funerary rites for poor Toby Poodlecock, etc. The party was pretty concerned that all of the strix tribes had been united under the leadership of a cult of Pazuzu, but then Barbie Ragnarock's player said, "Wait a minute, we're not in Sandpoint anymore, we're in Cheliax, we should just go tell the Hellknights!" but, of course, later, when they were in a position to inform authority figures about the impending winged devil apocalypse, they didn't.
Anyway, more roleplaying (there actually was hardly any combat this game as the loyal reader shall see), Jillian Poodlecock is inconsolate, blah blah blah. With a little prodding from the Dungeon Master, Genny realizes that the strix-and-stirge poo collected at the bottom of Devil's Tor just might be chemically identical to bat guano, and makes arrangements to come back and collect it all to turn into gunpowder. "George" tells the party how he and his Red-Banned braves are going to go gather other members of their tribe and arrange a series of signals ("if you find a pile of white rocks with a black one on top, that means the Devil's Tor is no longer safe; if you find a purple one in the middle of all white ones, that means..." etc.)
The party spends the night in the Devil's Tor and when they wake up the next morning, all of the strix are gone. So they say their last goodbyes to Toby (he was cremated) and resume their journey to Foxglove Manor.
When they arrive at Foxglove Manor, they espy a light on in the upper story and discover three little kids hiding in the wreckage of the stables. Sneaking up on them, they discover that a gang of juvenile delinquents have come up here to drink beer and commit acts of antisocial vandalism. The party decides to teach them a lesson.
They cast euphoric cloud (fog?) on the three hiding in the ruins and start tormenting them with ghost sounds and suggestion. As they were doing that, they noticed that a larger light is coming from the Manor itself, and Giles climbs up the outer face of the Manor and peeks in a window where he discovers Beavis, Butthead and Eric Cartman busy defecating, setting tapestries on fire and spray-painting "Satin Rulez!" in the hallway. More shenanigans involving Giles using prestidigitation to make a suit of armor rattle and impersonating the ghost of Aldern Foxglove, Symoreel flying about casting showy spells and Barbie Ragnarock displaying her prehensile hair to good effect. Beavis and Butthead wet themselves and ran away, put poor Eric Cartman stumbled down the staircase and broke his neck. Thankfully, Buck Rogers was there to save the obese adolescent, and they put a blindfold on him and scared him some more.
Hee hee! Good times.
Anyway, the it might not look like a whole lot on paper (or on screen), but the Haunting of Foxglove Manor was by far the most exciting part of the gaming session, so I will leave off at there for now.
People from Denmark are called Danes, not Dutch.
Googling indicates that the national median wage for McDonald's employees of 5 to 8 years is $9.15.
According to the article linked, $20 is the base wage for adults as negotiated by the unions (apparently there is no minimum wage in Denmark?) plus five weeks paid vacation. I don't know what the wage goes up to after 5 to 8 years.
There's a pretty good book I'd like to recommend which argues--pretty convincingly, I thought--that the present American racial caste system was intentionally designed to non-racist-ly appeal to the Rule of Law.
Good book. I liked it.
Also, I've worked with a lot of Spanish-speakers and the only time I ever caught hell for calling a Puerto Rican a Mexican or vice versa (mostly because I'd ask the Spanish-speakers where they were from before referring to them as either a Puerto Rican or a Mexican) was when I was working at the airport with Toro.
He had a tattoo of Tweetie Bird and one time he was flirting with one of the cleaning ladies when we were supposed to be working. "Hey, c'mon, Toro, the plane's here." He made a dismissive hand gesture. "Hey, Toro, Arriba! Arriba! Andele! Andele!"
He got up in my face, poking his hand at me with the pinkie and pointer extended (horns of the bull, he did that a lot, his name was Toro after all).
"Hey, man, I'm not Mexican, I'm Puerto Rican. Don't ever f~!+ing call me Mexican." He then went on a racist rant against Mexicans. Then he smiled. "Ha, ha, El Pussygato!* I'm just f&!@in' with you!"
*I'd explain why he called me that, but it'd involve telling you my real name.
Yes, all the benefits of high-tech imperialist terrorism, none of the domestic drawbacks of American GIs coming back in body bags.
F+@+ that shiznit.
Smash US Imperialism!
Male Goblin Druid 4
Mystified by the multiple gnomes, Cricket swings wildly at one of them, yelling in Tuelvi:
1d20 + 8 ⇒ (7) + 8 = 15 1d8 + 3 ⇒ (7) + 3 = 10
Wolvie attempts to eat one of the gnomes.
1d20 + 8 ⇒ (20) + 8 = 28 1d6 + 4 ⇒ (2) + 4 = 6 plus trip
EDIT--To confirm critical bite 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (17) + 8 = 25 Extra critical damage: 1d6 + 4 ⇒ (5) + 4 = 9
I hope Wolvie bit the right one!--EDIT
If anyone can understand Tuelvi they might be confused as to why Cricket is yelling I can't believe I wasted so much time reading those lousy books!
I am favoriting the hour of the very best of Curtis Mayfield on principle, although, alas, I haven't gotten around to it yet.
Funk for Friday! comes early this week!
Kingpinmaker, Game N + 2, Part Two
So, the rest of the night was taken up with the Assault on Devil's Tor, which, like a lot of encounters that I make up rather than stealing from Paizo books, suffered from a lot of flaws in design. These were compounded by a few flaws in execution, for a very long, frustrating fight.
Barbie led them to the secret tunnel into Devil's Tor where the party, precariously picking their path through a floor of razor sharp stalagtites (? -mites? whatever), upset a
I had originally planned on them encountering a bat swarm, and then was going to reward Genny's player with a giant heaping pile of bat guano from which to make gunpowder, but the Black Goblin's player received a package from Frog God Games earlier that day and in it was a copy of Tome of Horrors 4. I decided to teach the Black Goblin a lesson about his profligate ways and decided to use a monster from the book, found stirge swarm and, voila!
Well, those stirges f~+@ed them up good. I think only one, maybe two, characters avoided their blood drain and poor Giles O. Beck, I think it was, lost 10 points of Con! There was much gnashing of teeth and consternation, especially with the movement reduction, and the party was only saved when Symoreel pulled out some spell I'd never seen from one of the splat books that created a mini-maelstrom of electricity like out of Terminator 2 that drove the stirges away.
Finally, the party found themselves near the bottom of a giant crater in the middle of Devil's Tor. Below them, they could see a giant pool of white putrescence; above, they could see a winding path to the top of the tor, some caves, and two shelfs near the top that jutted out into the center of the crater.
From one, they could glimpse the harpy from the earlier encounter, banging a ritualistic rhythm on some drums; on the other they could see a wooden scaffolding. As the party scouts watched stealthily from the bottom, they saw two flying strix carry out a naked Toby Poodlecock and hold him in place as a eight-foot-tall strix wielding a nasty-looking falchion tied him to the scaffolding so he was spread-eagle, facing down, his lashed limbs the only things keeping him from falling into the roiling puddle of poo.
By the banging of the drum, and the gathered strix celebrants the party scouts could make out, they realized they didn't have much time. Potions of invisibility were quaffed, the stealthy party members started stealthily sneaking ahead, and the clanky party members waited and readied their ranged weapons.
And then Brother Makao stepped out into the crater and rolled a 1 on his Stealth check. Now, I know that a 1 doesn't automatically mean a failure, but Brother Makao didn't have a very high Stealth modifier and the players all drew in their breaths in nervous anticipation...so I had the strix notice them, interrupt the ritual, and attack.
Here's where all of the design flaws came into play. First off, I am nowhere near good enough of a DM, nor mathematician, to pull off a 3-D fight with many different layers and over 20 combatants. Second off, I had looked up some irl tors and had come up with a height of 800'. The party started the fight 500' below where the sacrifice was and, in retrospect, never had a chance. Third off, I had forgotten to tell Barbie's player a couple of things. Fourth off...well, I could mea culpa all day but essentially:
An invisible Giles started climbing directly up to the shelf with Toby. Barbie and Genny snuck out and started walking the path that led around the edge of the crater. An invisible Esmerelda snuck out after them. Brother Makao stepped out, tripped, and dislodged a large rock that crashed down the inside of the crater, alerting the strix. Brother Makao starts running DOWN the winding path towards the poo, hoping to distract the strix from the sneaking party members who were already climbing up the path. Buck Rogers, clanky as all get out, followed him down. I don't remember what Symoreel did.
For the first couple of rounds, the strix attack Buck and Brother Makao down below. The giant strix cleric summons a gigantic vulture demon which menaces the party doing some kind of crazy dance before Esmerelda dispels it to shouts of victory. The harpy flies out and sings her captivating song. Giles climbs invisibly. Genny and Barbie reveal themselves and shoot at the harpy. More strix show up, but attack Genny and Barbie. Symoreel blasts the harpy with a fireball The giant strix cleric casts some more spells. More strix show up. Giles, this entire time, climbs invisibly.
At some point, Barbie realizes that there are two different types of strix, ones with a blackish-blue coloration and ones with a purple-red coloration, like her dear George. Then she realizes that the next band of strix warriors flying down are LED by George! Ohmygod! They squawk at each other in strix as the demon-summoning and fireballs exploding all around them and Barbie learns that the all the strix tribes of Devil's Point have been strong-handed together into a giant confederation of all the winged devil tribes that is ruled over by--a cult of Pazuzu! But George isn't happy about this, and he is easily persuaded to call upon his brethren to revolt against the tyranny of the Black Talons! Birdman revolution!
Meanwhile, Giles keeps climbing. Around this time, Brother Makao, who has the Run feet and can move at 250' per round starts running up the path. Barbie and Genny jump on the backs of Symoreel and a strix and they start flying about, fighting Black Talon strix in mid-air.
Meanwhile, the eight-foot tall demoniac of Pazuzu with the falchion has been preparing his ritual sacrifice of poor Toby Poodlecock and, as Giles finally, invisibly makes it to the top of the ledge, disembowls poor Toby whose entrails spill out dangling down into the crater. The demoniac plays in Toby's viscera and blood and channels Toby's ebbing life power into summoning another vrock! which would have been a lot more ass-kicking if Esmerelda hadn't dispelled it again! Huzzah!
Anyway, I know there's a lot I'm missing in here, for example, at one point Buck Rogers summoned an angel, but to wrap it up, demoniac of Pazuzu kills Toby, flies away. The party, with their new friends in the Red Banned Band, kill all the Black Talons. Giles spent most of the game climbing the wall and Brother Makao spent, I think, four or five rounds just running. Design flaws. :(
Comrade Anklebiter wrote:
So when I wrote this, I was lying. I hadn't yet finished the first chapter,
Now I have and all I can say is if you like reading Comrade Anklebiter's posts on American history and race relations, you will probably enjoy this book. Starts with Bacon's Rebellion, moves quickly through Reconstruction, the defeat of the Southern Populists, the erection of Jim Crow, penal servitude, the Civil Rights Movement, the Civil Rights Movement backlash, Reaganism and ends up with a delightful quotation about how "In so doing,"--she is referring here to Slick Willie's 1994 crime bills and welfare reform--"Clinton--more than any other president--created the current racial undercaste."
As for Comrade Jeff's question above, Alexander locates the birth of "law and order" rhetoric among Southern segregationists as a rallying cry against the Civil Rights Movement (the passages where she quotes Southern segregationists about civil disobedience and crime being one and the same thing should raise the nape hairs for the anti-police faction of the thread), traces it through the Republican Southern Strategy, the Nixon administration and the Reagan years* and the declaration of the War on Drugs, two years before the crack epidemic (which, Alexander claims, was mostly overblown by the Reagan administration and a servile press), Willie Horton and Ricky Ray Rector.
So, Citizen Pres Man was right: somewhere after 1973.
"For example, when Reagan kicked off his presidential campaign at the annual Neshoba County Fair near Philadelphia, Mississippi--the town where three civil rights activists were murdered in 1964--he assured the crowd 'I believe in states' rights,' and promised to restore to states and local governments the power that properly belonged to them. His critics promptly alleged that he was signalling a racial message to his audience, but Reagan firmly denied it, forcing liberals into a position that would soon become familiar--arguing that something is racist but finding it impossible to prove in the absence of explicitly racist language."
Focus on this finger: [Makes obscene American gesture]
I'll leave to the pedants whether they feel it is worth arguing about "starvation" vs. the following:
“'He had eaten almost nothing at home,' Mr. Nikas said, sitting in his cramped school office near the port of Piraeus, a working-class suburb of Athens, as the sound of a jump rope skittered across the playground. He confronted Pantelis’s parents, who were ashamed and embarrassed but admitted that they had not been able to find work for months. Their savings were gone, and they were living on rations of pasta and ketchup."
"Last year, an estimated 10 percent of Greek elementary and middle school students suffered from what public health professionals call 'food insecurity,' meaning they faced hunger or the risk of it, said Dr. Athena Linos, a professor at the University of Athens Medical School who also heads a food assistance program at Prolepsis, a nongovernmental public health group that has studied the situation. 'When it comes to food insecurity, Greece has now fallen to the level of some African countries,' she said."
"Now, several of Evangelia’s classmates are frequently hungry, she said, and one boy recently fainted. Some children were starting to steal for food, she added. While she does not excuse it, she understands their plight. 'Those who are well fed will never understand those who are not,' she said." (all from the first NYT article).
In the meantime, I shall amend my original statement that irked Citoyen Banker's Mouthpiece so:
No, I've never been to Portugal, but I am wondering how wise a choice it is to join the EU when so many of their member-states' populations are being given the choice of emigrate or be evicted, go dumpster diving and risk passing out from hunger which, of course, isn't anything like starvation.
I wonder if you have lost track of the exchange, Citoyen. You said "nobody starves in EU," hence the pictorials.
I'm not really sure how pointing out that there is poverty and hunger in even richer countries is a counterpoint, but, then, I rarely understand what you're saying.
Well, your "soft-bellied communist" screed sounded like the letters by 15-year-olds I used to read in punk rock magazines complaining about Rage Against the Machine's major label record contract.
Anyway, I don't buy $30 RPG books, but if I did, I'd make sure they were printed in the People's Republic of China.