Stare in awe at the wonder that will be Pistaccio Prime!
Celestial Healer wrote:
Can I have a place of power in this new world order? I am a connoisseur of gelid desserts.
But of course! Pistaccio Prime will require a strong caste of rulers to keep it safe and sound! Would you like a barony in the creamy Prairies of Cherimoya? Perhaps a fief in Coolatta Falls? Or maybe a duchy in Moors of Cookie Dough & Marshmallow Choco-Blast?
Pfah, the Frozenyoghurtians can bite my stracciatella-ridden behind! They shall be powerless before our Cornet Destroyers and Waffle-Raffle-Fafflers! We're still unsure what the latter ones do, but I'm sure it will be both tasty and nefarious.
OR come live with me in my protoplanet made entirely from icecream.
It's not yet built, of course. Still in what I call "Early Napkin-Doodle Development Stage", but I'm a serious man with serious goals. But with your monetary support, I can make it happen.
There won't be any cantaloupe icecream, however. Screw cantaloupes.
So, I go to this meeting. Meet a couple of gentlement. It all goes very well and all, until the waitress comes by to ask what we're having (we're at an icecream cafe -a coffehouse where you also, well, eat icecream-). She suggests trying out the tripple delight icecream, when one of the gentlemen says:
"No, thanks. I do not like icecream"
The gentleman. He does not like icecream. Ice-cream. He dislikes it. A human being who has not an ounce of love for a cream of ice.
IS THERE NO HOPE LEFT IN MAN?!
My grandfather once told me that [paraphrasing] "When people insult you, most of the times it is either because anger is twisting their words, or because they are too uneducated to formulate the message otherwise. In the first case, a gentleman should show restraint and understanding, taking no offense; in the second, a gentleman should feel pity, taking no offense either".
I always go back to that lesson when someone insults me. Perhaps that's why I'm so hard to anger. Or maybe I'm just slow. Either case, it leads to less ulcers, I think.
I'm more bothered about books that switch genders on every other paragraph, to be honest.
As for Mother's Day, the celebration is technically pretty ancient, dating back to Classical times. The current version was instated in the XIX century, before Hallmark was founded. It was officially adopted as a holiday in the early 1900's, but with Hallmark having about 100 employees back then according to Wikipedia, I really doubt it was all a corporate conspiracy.
I heard he made it by hammering down a tank into a blade inside the fires of Mt. Fuji. While the tank was shooting back at him.
I'm pretty happy the way things are. I'd probably just do some functional fixes, like improving my hearing on the left side (which has been diminished ever since I got an ear infection while travelling through Mexico about 10 years ago).
As for more dramatic modifications, I'm pretty sure they'll happen sooner than we expect. I wouldn't be surprised to see people with blue skin, tails, and beer-cooling compartments inside their thighs. Some people like standing out, others like the shock-factor, and others try to build their identities around their looks, which means we're likely to see some rather extreme modifications show up as new technology allows it.
Thus, I've often wondered how, if it ever happens, our first contact with aliens will be like:
Alien 1 "Dude, I thought you said these guys were mammals"
I disagree. As I've mentioned, homosexuals are not part of my "default to" set of elements. Therefore, if I were to put homosexuals in the game, I would have to consciously and purposefully add them.
That means I'd be including the equivalent of a "token gay" in the game for some odd and misplaced sense of forced diversity, something which seems rather counterproductive to me. I've always though true tolerance and diversity is when it doesn't matter whether you include someone of a particular group or not, because the descriptor is no longer relevant as a method of social classification.
For the reccord, black people very rarely appear in my games, and when they do it is often conscious, never as something automatic. Does this mean that I've purposely predefined the place of black people in my game world? No. I think this is the result of my social background, as I live in a country where black people represent less than 0.1% of the population and thus the concept of black-skinned people is not what my brain automatically defaults to when I ask it to quickly make up 20 NPCs.
Same with homosexuals.
Whenever romance, marriage, parental relationships and whathaveyou are at the focus of the story, the take is generally more platonic than sexual, as in more interested in the external effects of the relationship than the internal. They still sometimes take some notoriety, but they are not relevant to the story (as in, the story would develop essentially the same way with or without them).
To use a greek classification, themes of love in the manner of philia ("fraternal love"), agape ("preocupied love"), and storge ("familial love") get the focus, while the eros ("intimate love") is not really relevant.
No particular reason for that, though. That's just the way we play and feel comfortable playing.
Sounds like a great idea! Simple terror is best terror.
As for powers, the whole concept of "home" has very strong relations with various mythologies: A place that means something to someone has a certain relationship with that person, and home is the most powerful relationship a place can have with an individual. Therefore, allowing someone/something into your home has strong metaphysical significance, akin to voluntarily giving your name.
Demons, witches, faeries, and various other mythological monsters want your name because it gives them power over you. Keeping your name to yourself protects you, because it shields your identity from them.
Home works in a similar fashion: Home is where you act like yourself, where you are at ease. Home is also where you feel safe and protected, and where only those you trust should enter. Giving someone access to your home, then, implies letting them through one of your innermost layers of protection (your name/identity and ultimately your soul being the only things left after that).
These creatures, then, want to come in, but they want you to let them in. They want you to let down your defenses (using exasperation as a tool, apparently) and allow them access. After that, it's all nefarious plots and probes in the wrong places, I guess.
Queso chicken from the nice Mexican place not far from work. Found out you can just call in and pick up an order, so might visit them a bit more often now.
<Movie fast-forwards through a montage of Orthos ordering queso chicken twice per day, every day, and we find him in his deathbed with a doctor looking at his lab results sternly>
Doctor: "This is the worst case of queso chicken intoxication I have ever seen"
Then doctor and nurse kiss for the camera while Orthos dies unceremoniously in the background.
Space 1889 game. The party was going through a hunting safari in Venus, when one of the characters (Lord Nigel Blackhorn of Humplebottom-on-Averyshire, Proffessional Nothingdoer) suddenly snapped:
"By golly, I haven't done anything lordly in almost two days. <Pointing at two servants> You and you, fight to death for my amusement. Chop chop"
He also insisted on calling everyone "Richard".
During a Pathfinder campaign, the resident barbarian had lost one of his hands. Later on, the party got a necromancer to attach a new one they stole from a graveyard. From time to time, the hand would slap him, give the finger to random people and stuff like that. When asked if it wasn't problematic, he responded with his characteristic russian accent:
"Hand holds sword. Sword kills people. Vorgok pleased with arrangement. Rest of time, hand can have day off"
Did you know the words "cannon", "canon", and "canyon" have the same root? They all come from the Latin "Canna" (a cane or long tube).
The difference in their writing comes from the fact English addopted "Cannon" from the French when refering to a gun, "Canyon" from the Spanish when refering to a a large ravine, and "Canon" from the Church when refering to a body of rules.
The more you know <takes off on a rainbow>.
Roads don't have rails. Railways do. You don't derail if you are not on a rail.
Check & mate.
DM Torillan wrote:
2 cents? That's all? I mean, couldn't you give like 4 cents? It's like you don't value the topic at hand at all!
From what I remember hearing when I saw this in the news last year, the honey was perfectly eddible and tasted just the same. In fact, some farmers were selling it.
However, the authorities finally determined they posed a potential risk, as the product was adultered.
I'd personally buy me a pack of funny coloured honey in a heartbeat!
Honey will take on a bit of the flavor of whatever nearby plant life the bees are making use of. For example, if the hive is next to a stand of orange trees, the honey might have a slight citrus flavor.
On a similar line, red, green, and blue honey was produced by bees in France last year, making everyone perplexed. It was later discovered that the cause was a nearby M&M processing plant.
In my experience, it was something like:
Me: "Guys, GUYS, let's play D&D!"
It's been 17 years since. I think I've been less than 6 times on the other side of the screen.
That or the Starstone thing.
More seriously, though I don't remember learning or doing anything particularly different when I first took the DM hat, stuff I've picked up along the way would be:
1.- The amount of prep you need to do will be correlated to your capacity for improvisation. The more you can make up on the spot, the less you need to worry about the details.
2.- You can really help your improvisation capacity by having a good idea of the background. Rather than laying down every single event, character, and fight in detail, if you create a solid setting (or study it well if you are playing with a published world) you'll be able to pull stuff out very easily.
3.- Players will do half your work if you let them. Players regularly give out suggestions of what to do next, most of the time without noticing it. Pay good ear to what they say and use it to weave the plot when you're out of ideas. Even when you already have stuff set, players can sometimes give out even better ideas.
4.- Knowing all the rules is less important than knowing the spirit of the game and being fair. Nine times out of ten there'll be a player in your group that knows more about a specific rule than you do. But as long as you can act as a fair referee, don't be afraid to say you don't remember the price of chicken or the rules regarding concrete mixing. Let the players collaborate with their knowledge and then give a ruling that you consider fair.
5.- That said, know your players. Some people really don't mind absolute rule precision, while others will be expecting you to stick to the RAW on every step. One option is not better or worse than the other, just different ways of enjoying the game.
6.- Lay out your expectations for the game early on. If you are planning on giving out a lot of background information for a mystery story, tell the players you'll be expecting them to take notes. If your game will be heavy on the world's mythology, tell players to do some preping of their own. Try to set the mood you want for the game before it starts, so both you and the players know well what they are getting into.
7.- Don't make a story for yourself alone. Though you don't need to have players decide how the whole thing will develop, ask their input on what they'd like to play before you plunge into writing the whole story (unless, of course, we're talking about DMing for an unknown group). Some groups really don't like investigations; others prefer their adventures to have a certain degree of lighthearted humour. Always remember that, no matter how deep and well crafted the story is, it needs to connect with what players want in order to get them involved.
8.- That said, you are the DM, and you should always make that clear. Define which level of control you want and tell your players. You are there to have fun too, and in order to do so you will need some things to go your way. Maybe you need to restrict character concepts within a certain style, or perhaps having too many minions/companions will boggle the game down for you. If there is a point of contention, try to reach a compromise, but never DM something you are not comfortable with. In the end, it will just make the game a problem for you and a problem for the players.
9.- Finally, let players play with your story. I've found that the greatest and most unique thrill in our field as DMs is the wonder of what will they do with what you give them. Stick to your narrative, but give them room to bend it around. In the end, it will both pleasantly surprise you and also decrease your workload, since the more you write in stone, the more prep you need to support it.
Hope it helps!
That picture is tremendously overpowering. I'm looking at Saturn from behind, while sitting in the comfort of my office drinking tea.
By golly humans can do some awesome stuff.
Shh, it's alright, it's alright.
I heard that, if we're nice, Paizo will send us packaged in bubble wrap!
Hey! Part of the Argentinian slice of Antartica overlaps with part of our Chilean slice of Antarctica! We have actual people living there (which may or may not be mingling with the penguins. We're still not sure, but some think they ought to get voting rights, at least for the bigger penguins).
Argentinian natives can settle on the British overlapping of the Argentinian claim. We have... stuff to do with ours. Technical stuff. You wouldn't understand.
Raping Latin America?
Sure there were some controversies, but the Jesuits have been fundamental for us Latin Americans in more ways I can explain. Some key aspects:
-They created our entire educational infrastructure. Universities, libraries, schools, you name it. They built it all.
-They fought a perpetual battle against the crowns of Europe for the protection of natives. When the Spanish and Portuguese sought to basically enslave them, the Jesuits protected them, kept their languages, cultures, and knowledge. Many Jesuits died fighting agains slave raids. One of the main reasons they were expelled from America was because they represented such a danger to the European crowns (also because they wanted their fabulous wealth), which sought to supress the natives, while the Jesuits kept educating them (they even formed native militias to help them fight-off slave traders).
-They were essential to the independentist movements that culminated with all our countries breaking off in the early 1800's. Even after they got kicked out of the continent, they kept supporting the would-be nations through all manners of secret networks and influences.
-Even though they were stripped of everything they had made in America, when they were allowed to come back they started all over and once again rose to the top. They built a whole new wave of schools and universities, newspapers, even comic books (the first Chilean cartoonist, for instance, was a Jesuit priest).
-Their work with the poor of the continent is unmatched. I've had the honour of working on missions with them several times, and the work they do is frankly amazing. One great example is the Roof Foundation, which started in Chile under the tutelage of the Society of Jesus and now extends all over Latin America and the Caribbean, with over 500,000 volunteers participating and over 90,000 families having been assisted with new houses, improvements, reconstructions, and whathaveyou. Not to mention other Jesuit organizations like the House of Christ, which takes care of tens of thousands of kids and elders in extreme poverty.
There is a reason Pope Francis is so insistent on the matter of poverty; Jesuits have always been working elbow-to-elbow with the poorest of the poor, and their work has helped millions. Latin America in particular owes them tremendously, on humanitarian, intellectual, political, and social levels.
DM Wellard wrote:
Keep in mind Mrs. K has a very, very poor relationship with Pope Francis. He was a dedicated opposer of both hers and her husband's government, which he accused of forging poverty stats, inflation numbers, and all sorts of other social and economic data in order to mask the problems riddling Argentina. That, on top of their clashes regarding matters like homosexual marriage, abortion, social security and the treatment of social movements.
The Falklands/Malvinas issue is one that serves Mrs. K keep the focus away from the other internal issues. If she gave into somehow using Papal support for the matter, it would mean she has to get on Pope Francis' good side, which in turn would require acceptance of his critical opinion of her government.
The cons outweight the pros in such a case. In any case, saying the Pope is anti-british feels like an improper stretch here.
Even though I personally think Britain has the current right to own the islands, matters are not as clean cut as you say.
No one really knows who found the islands first (reccords are split between Portugal, Britain, Spain, and the Netherlands), but what is known is that the French settled it first (calling the the Malouines, from where the castillian name Malvinas comes from) and then the Spanish took it, putting it specifically under control of the governorship of Buenos Aires.
The Brits also settled the island, without knowing the French had it before, so later on when the Spanish took control of the French territory, there was a nebulous status regarding who owned what, but in the end the Spanish had the rightful claim according to the notions of the time, as they had taken the French claim, which in turn was the earliest and thus the valid one.
To complicate matters even further, the British left the island in the late 1700's, leaving nothing but a sign saying it was their, while the Spanish still kept a governor appointed. He eventually also left and also left a sign, and the island became completely deserted in the early 1800's.
Thing is, the island was empty and then the now independent Argentinians claimed and settled the island. Not only that, but the guy who did so actually had British support to do so in the name of La Plata (I suppose because they were enemies of Spain and the guys were revolting against the Spanish).
Meanwhile, the US decided to bomb the island over some fishing rights and unilaterally called the island as being outside any national jurisdiction (even though Argentinians still lived there). Later on the British came back and forced the remaining Argentinians to leave.
So that's where the source of the conflict lies: The matter of who owns the settlement is a historical mess, but it does lend validity to, first, the French claim, then the Spanish claim and latter on the Argentinian claim. Eventually the British took over by force, which was an acceptable method for claims at the time, so in my understanding the British own the island since the 1830's.
Some more interesting facts about Franciscus I:
-Only has one lung. He lost the other one 50 years ago due to an infection.
-He's the son of an Italian railworker who migrated to Argentina in the early XX century.
-He's a Chemist by profession. Also has a master's degree in Chemistry.
-Avoids living in the Archbishop's Palace of Buenos Aires. Instead, lives in a tiny flat.
-He has asked his fellow countrymen not to travel to Rome to celebrate the election and instead give the money to the poor.
-There are rumours that say he might have been the second place in the last papal election in 2005.
-He's in favour of the use of condoms.
-He's openly critic about priests who refuse to baptise the children of unmarried couples.
-He is very vocal about direct priestly activity in the assistance of the poor and heavily criticises "stay-at-home" clerics.
Just got the news: The Conclave has elected Argentinian Archbishop of Buenos Aires, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, to be the CCLXVI Pontifex Maximus of the Catholic Church! He has taken the name of Francis I, most likely in honour of Saint Francis of Assissi.
It's a pretty historical election as well:
-He's the first non-European Pope in 1,200 years.
As a Catholic I'm pretty happy with the election. Cardinal Bergoglio is well-known for his keen interest in helping the poor, his simplicity, his humility, his acute theology, and his criticism of the dehumanizing routes modern economical and social models can take. He's pretty adamantly against homosexual marriage, however, so that might cause some controversy.
As a Latin American, I'm ecstatic. We've been waiting for a Latin American Pope for as long as I can remember, our continent being home to 40% of all the Catholics in the world. I'm glad our particular culture and way of seeing things and understanding Christ will have a chance to assist and enrich the Universal Church.
And finally, as a Chilean, I'm proud to see a fellow Argentinian brother on the Throne of Saint Peter, one that underwent his Jesuit formation here in Chile interestingly.
Thought I'd share the news.
WHY DIDN'T I KNOW OF THIS SPELL
I MUST NOW PLAY A FIRE-SNEEZING GOBLIN WEEZARD!
Comrade Anklebiter wrote:
You are just jealous because there was no Goblin Autonomous Oblast.
Humphrey Boggard wrote:
Some assistance with the name:
-The title would be Don Pedro (Señor only goes with the last name, so it would be either Don Pedro or Señor Piedro). As for the secondary title, it should be "El Hacha Negra de las Minas del Sur", "Axe" being feminine in Spanish (but since it begins with a silent H followed by an A, has to be preceeded by "El" rather than "La").
-Piedro doesn't actually mean anything in Spanish, though it clearly conveys the meaning of stone, so it's alright. Other suggestions from actual last-names involving stones might be Pedreros ("Of the Stones" or "Stonner"), Pedral/Pedrales ("Stone Field"), Pétreo ("Stony"), Rocal ("Place with Rocks"), Pedregal ("Place with Loose Stones"), Pedroza/Pedrosa ("Pink Stone"), and Pedrón ("Large Stone").
-For some made-up dwarvish-themed names in Spanish relating to stones, you could use stuff like Piedranegra ("Blackstone"), Rocatronante ("Thundering Rock"), Forjarrocosa ("Rocky Forge"), Guijarroaudaz ("Bold Pebble"), Rompelosas ("Slab Breaker"), Barberrueco ("Granite-Slab Beard"), or Cantofuerte ("Strong Stone").
-For extra style, you can create names using the traditional Spanish naming system: Title + Forename + Family Name + Father's Last Name (which can also be composite) + Mother's Last Name (which can also be composite), so you'll end up with something like Don Pedro Augusto Rocatrueno del Pedregal y Hachanegra de Forjafuerte (roughly translated into Sir Peter August Thunderock of Stonefield and Blackaxe of Strongforge).
-As for looks, there is one particularly famous Spanish figure, The Count-Duke of Olivares (at one point the most powerful man in the whole world) who looks a lot like what I would imagine as a Spanish Dwarf.
-The largest cemetery in the world is the Wadi-us-Salaam in the iraqui city of Najaf. It measures over 6km2 (about 1,500 acres) and received over half a million dead per year. No one truly knows how many people are buried there, but even the most conservative estimates speak of tens of millions.
-Cleopatra was not Egyptian; she was Greek, specifically of the Ptolomei dynasty, which had been ruling the region for 13 previous generations.
-A Micromort is a measure of the statistical chance of someone dying. It represents a 1 millionth chance of dying, and is used to measure risk. For instance, travelling 1 hour on a canoe measures 10 Micromorts, while eating 500 bananas has a Micromort value of 0.5 (surprisingly, not because of an eating-related dysfunction, but because of the chance of developing cancer due to the radiation exposure caused by the banana's potasium). A single Micromort has an estimated value of 50 USD, based on the average amount of money people pay for such services as life insurance.
-Related to the aforementioned death cause, BED, or Banana Equivalent Dose, is the amount of radiation exposure you get from eating one banana. 1 BED equals 0,98µSv. As reference, the workers exposed to the Fukushima accident received about 68,000 Banana Equivalent Doses.
-A container full of bananas can trigger false alarms in the radiation detectors of ports.
In my experience, it is better to ask and run the risk of being told to leave than never to ask.
I had a very similar experience around 2005. I was staying in a resort in Aruba, when I started hearing crying from the room next door. Few moments later, the crying got louder. So I went there, knocked on the door to see if everything was alright, and then a woman opens up, her face clearly the recent recipient of several hits.
Both she and the husband tried to play it cool, but when the woman started sobbing again while we were talking, the guy tried to hit her again. I got in the middle and got the punch in the shoulder, pretty hard by the way, so imagine what would have done to her face (where I think it was aimed). I managed to calm the guy down after that (though he seemed to be about to try and hit her again all the time. I myself wanted to punch the man hard, but I somehow managed to keep it cool) and called the resort management, who generously gave the woman a new room and custody, and called the local authorities to handle the man.
So worst case scenario, the neighbour calls you out for snooping. But that's preferable to the potentially worst case scenario on the neighbour's side.